Picture This

What are the worlds of knowledge inside a bio-acoustic, spectrogram, a mathematical diagram, or an illustrated equation? Picture This is a column in which scientists describe the power of drawings.

Picture This: Making Waves
Astrophysicist Chiara Mingarelli on the noise of black holes merging, recorded in a single curve.
Picture This: Stephen Hawking's Blackboard
Famed physicists' loopy scribbles give clues to the origins of time and space.
Picture This: The Central Dogma
Philip Ball on how Francis Crick’s undogmatic antics changed our theory of life.
Picture This: The Periodic Table
Philip Ball on the visual ordering of all the elements known to humankind—and how we might order them differently.
Picture This: Rule 30
Stephen Wolfram on a simple rule that defined a new way of observing the computational universe.
Picture This: The Hyperbolic Disk
Theoretical physicist Sean Carroll visualizes a mind-bending geometry that inspired many, from Einstein to Escher.
Picture This: The Double Slit Test
An iconic quantum physics experiment, astounding in its simplicity and confounding in its implications, continues to befuddle the best of minds.
Picture This: The Bell Test
Author Adam Becker examines John Bell’s seminal 1964 theorem that helped settle some scores and launch the second quantum revolution.
Picture This: Feynman Diagrams
Theoretical physicist Maulik Parikh marvels at the whimsy and scientific rigor of Feynman diagrams.
Picture This: Sheet Music for the Natural World
Acoustic ecologist Michelle Fournet reads the scientific sheet music of whale songs for Picture This.
Picture This: On Seeing Equations
In this edition of Picture This, astrophysicist Will Kinney describes the images math conjures up in his mind.
Picture This: The Drawing That Earned Sir Roger Penrose a Nobel Prize
Picture This is a new column in which scientists describe the power of drawings.