Friday Film:: Janine Benyus: Biomimicry in action

Today’s Friday Film features a fascinating and enlightening TED talk by Janine Benyus, natural sciences writer, innovation consultant, author, co-founder of the Biomimicry Guild and founder of the Biomimicry Institute. One reason nature is so important to us as humans is the lessons we take from it. Observing the workings of the flora and fauna in our own backyards and daily lives inspires many ideas which often benefit us and the environment.

The Biomimicry Guild defines biomimicry as “an innovation method that seeks sustainable solutions by emulating nature’s time-tested patterns and strategies, e.g., a solar cell inspired by a leaf. The goal is to create products, processes, and policies—new ways of living—that are well-adapted to life on earth over the long haul.” While the idea of biomimicry isn’t new, Velcro was created using this idea, this talk highlights recent innovations which have made technology much more efficient in addition to coming up with new ideas for products and design.

About the video from the TED website:

Janine Benyus has a message for inventors: When solving a design problem, look to nature first. There you’ll find inspired designs for making things waterproof, aerodynamic, solar-powered and more. Here she reveals dozens of new products that take their cue from nature with spectacular results.

With this quote, the film begins.

If I could reveal anything that is hidden from us, at least in modern cultures, it would be to reveal something that we’ve forgotten, that we used to know as well as we knew our own names. And that is that we live in a competent universe, that we are part of a brilliant planet, and that we are surrounded by genius.

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Kelly Brenner

Kelly Brenner is a naturalist, writer and photographer based in Seattle. She is the author of NATURE OBSCURA: A City’s Hidden Natural World, coming Spring 2020 from Mountaineers Books. She writes freelance articles about natural history and has bylines in Crosscut, ParentMap, National Wildlife Magazine and others. On the side she writes fiction.

Kelly holds a bachelors degree in landscape architecture from the University of Oregon and a certificate in non-fiction writing from the University of Washington.
Kelly Brenner
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