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This is what it looks like when a piece of coral dies.

[rebelmouse-image 19532184 dam="1" original_size="500x281" caption="GIF via Netflix/Exposure Labs/YouTube, from the film "Chasing Coral."" expand=1]GIF via Netflix/Exposure Labs/YouTube, from the film "Chasing Coral."

This is a phenomenon known as coral bleaching, now captured in the award-winning documentary "Chasing Coral." To get these impressive shots, a team of photographers, divers, and scientists traveled the world to capture time-lapse photographs of coral bleaching events.


"The beauty with time-lapse photography is that you have the ability to shift how we as humans see and perceive changes that may move in the slow lane," says photographer Zack Rago.

Getting these images was a challenge. Divers had to spend hours each day battling the currents. And it could be emotionally difficult too.

"Being the person on the ground experiencing those changes is certainly emotionally taxing. I have a deep connection to coral reef ecosystems. Spending as much time as I have documenting their death is something that fills me with guilt and shame to this day," explains Rago. "At the same time, I also cherish those dives because I know that our team has revealed this issue to the world in meaningful and powerful way."

When asked if there was any single dive that was especially hard, Rago says yes. "There is one dive that was particularly difficult. In the hours leading up to the dive, I actually watched the first edit of our time-lapses. Seeing the images from day one and immediately going back out to those dying reefs was the single most emotionally challenging dive I’ll likely ever do."

Coral bleaching happens when the water around a reef becomes too warm.

During a bleaching event, the coral polyps (tiny creatures that actually make the reef) are effectively cooked, slowly turning white before dying. It doesn't take much, the episodes captured in Chasing Coral were the result of only a two-degree rise in water temperature, according to The New York Times.

Once the coral is dead, brown, sludgy algae take over, turning the once vibrant reef into something that looks like a parking lot.

[rebelmouse-image 19532185 dam="1" original_size="500x281" caption="GIF via Netflix/Exposure Labs/YouTube, from the film "Chasing Coral."" expand=1]GIF via Netflix/Exposure Labs/YouTube, from the film "Chasing Coral."

This deadly warming is fueled by climate change, as more than 90% of the excess heat in our atmosphere is absorbed by the ocean.

"Coral reefs are in trouble. We know that if current trends prevail, we will lose the majority of corals on the planet in the coming decades," says Rago. Scientists have warned that, given current trends, we could lose most corals within 30 years. Vast swaths of the Great Barrier Reef (where these photos were taken) may already be past the point of no return.

Rago is planning to head back to the Great Barrier Reef this November to help identify "super corals" that could help scientists breed heat-resistant reefs.

As climate change becomes the new norm, it can be difficult to remember how the world once looked.

"We need to protect what we can right now," says Rago.

There are already a lot of exciting efforts underway. Nations around the world are currently rallying around stopping or mollifying the effects of climate change, with 169 different countries joining in on the landmark Paris 2015 climate agreement.

As they work out the best way to stop this, photography like these amazing time-lapse images can be a touch point for us — something to stick in our minds. And, if we fail, they can be a record for future generations.

"This problem may be hidden in our ocean, but the solutions start with us," Rago says. By sharing these images, people can help inspire friends, family members, or business or political leaders to action.

"Chasing Coral" premiered on Netflix in July 2017 and is still available to watch as of this writing.

If you want to see more, you can watch this three-minute video, including some of the time-lapse images, below:

Time-lapse video captures a disturbing phenomenon known as cor...

These before-and-after images remind us of what's really at stake in the climate conversations at #COP23. (via Chasing Coral)

Posted by Upworthy on Friday, November 10, 2017

The team was also able to capture a weird, rare event known as coral fluorescence, which is well worth a watch. If you'd like to find out more about the film, you can visit their website.

Photo courtesy of Girls at Work

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Girls are bombarded with messages from a very young age telling them that they can’t, that is too big, this is too heavy, those are too much.

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Pop Culture

14 things that will remain fun no matter how old you get

Your inner child will thank you for doing at least one of these.

Photo by Annie Spratt on Unsplash

Swings can turn 80-year-olds into 8-year-olds in less that two seconds.

When we’re kids, fun comes so easily. You have coloring books and team sports and daily recess … so many opportunities to laugh, play and explore. As we get older, these activities get replaced by routine and responsibility (and yes, at times, survival). Adulthood, yuck.

Many of us want to have more fun, but making time for it still doesn’t come as easily as it did when we were kids—whether that’s because of guilt, a long list of other priorities or because we don’t feel it’s an age-appropriate thing to long for.

Luckily, we’ve come to realize that fun isn’t just a luxury of childhood, but really a vital aspect of living well—like reducing stress, balancing hormone levels and even improving relationships.

More and more people of all ages are letting their inner kids out to play, and the feelings are delightfully infectious.

You might be wanting to instill a little more childlike wonder into your own life, and not sure where to start. Never fear, the internet is here. Reddit user SetsunaSaigami asked people, “What always remains fun no matter how old you get?” People’s (surprisingly profound) answers were great reminders that no matter how complex our lives become, simple joy will always be important.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

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Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

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When I was younger I used to think I was dying or that I would get kidnapped by a random stranger, but I kept it to myself because I thought something was wrong with me. I thought that telling people would confirm this fear, so I kept it inside my entire life until I was an adult and learned it was part of ADHD and other disorders, such as OCD and PTSD. But it doesn't have to be part of a disorder at all—a vast amount of people just have intrusive thoughts, and a Twitter user, Laura Gastón, is trying to normalize them for others.

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via Lewis Speaks Sr. / Facebook

This article originally appeared on 02.25.21


Middle school has to be the most insecure time in a person's life. Kids in their early teens are incredibly cruel and will make fun of each other for not having the right shoes, listening to the right music, or having the right hairstyle.

As if the social pressure wasn't enough, a child that age has to deal with the intensely awkward psychological and biological changes of puberty at the same time.

Jason Smith, the principal of Stonybrook Intermediate and Middle School in Warren Township, Indiana, had a young student sent to his office recently, and his ability to understand his feelings made all the difference.

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