Saturday, 9 October 2010

Science is Vital

Since today is the day of the big Science is Vital rally and, as an impoverished student, I couldn't get down to London to join in, I decided to make a cake. An epic cake. (Possibly an epically wrecky cake). And I roped in my housemates :)
For those of you that don't know what Science is Vital is about, the basic idea is that the British government is threatening to make cuts to scientific research funding - big cuts. Our argument is that this is silly, because, well, science is vital. (You can find a much better and more coherent explanation here).

Anyway, the cake had to represent as many branches of science as I could fit on a cake board (and, for that matter, had a chance of modelling out of icing). This is what we ended up with:

The cakes were in a box with a closed lid, leading to quantum uncertainty about the cake's whereabouts (and existence).
There are two cakes of identical composition, with slightly different mass values, meaning that we have isotopes of cake.
The cakes were combined to create a geological profile (one with a tectonic fault, as it turned out) and 'fossils' (strips of sugared orange) were 'deposited' in one of the cakes.

Around the cakes, the following sciences are represented:
Archaeology - partially excavated skeleton, ranging pole, archaeologist.
Astronomy - sun, asteroid belt, stars, Patrick Moore (apologies).
The natural world: flowers, jelly snakes, Darwin's finch (couldn't figure out how to make David Attenborough).
Oceanography: whale, octopus, diver.
Physiology: eyeballs, brain (for Krystyna), DNA (for Becki), skeleton.
Chemistry: lab equipment, (badly iced) Harris structure of H2O, schematic of Chemist... minor explosion.
Paleaeontology: flower (representing the foliage of the time), dinosaur, meteorite.
Meteorology: various weather events.
As a fan of Cake Wrecks, I can safely say that these cakes were made in the spirit of that excellent blog; if they can raise a bit of awareness for Science is Vital, even better!

Thanks to Jamie (who I made get her hands dirty), Rowena (who has a hidden talent as a cake decorator), Niall (who financed the cake and fixed the icing), Mike (moral support and guinness) and the people who helped think of things to decorate them with (Krystyna, Becki, Seb, JacAbsolute and Ben to name but a few).

More images can be found at my deviantArt account, here.


  1. Hey...where am I?

    And why don't woodpeckers get headaches?