Everything you never knew you wanted to know about octopus sex

In the latest episode of The Brain Scoop, the always-fantastic Emily Graslie talks with Janet Voight, cephalopod expert and Associate Curator of Zoology at the Chicago Field Museum, about the astounding biology of octopus sex, and "what is historically called a penis." » 7/27/13 11:45am 7/27/13 11:45am

Your cyborg octopus is almost ready

The octopus is one of those cephalopods with seeming superpowers. It can communicate using the chromatophores under its skin; it can wriggle into impossibly small places; and it can open jars like a boss. And now engineers say the next big frontier will be "soft robotics" that could result in cyborg octopuses. » 7/26/13 1:21pm 7/26/13 1:21pm

This musical ode to a little octopus is an instant cure for sadness

Nerf Herder Parry Gripp's music videos are relentlessly cheerful—just try to get through "Turtle (No, that's a Tortoise)" or "Neon Pegasus" without cracking a smile. This quickie music video pays tribute to the exploratory nature of a lone octopus just climbing that rock. It's a little burst of musical, tentacular… » 1/19/13 9:30am 1/19/13 9:30am

8 glorious buildings shaped like squids and octopodes

Architects frequently take their design cues from nature, but while some prefer the curves of budding flowers or the sturdy power of desert mesas, others give their buildings reaching tentacles, high, squid-like towers, or the occasional smattering of what looks like suckers. Here are a handful of buildings and design… » 11/17/12 2:00pm 11/17/12 2:00pm

These adorable steampunk illustrations make us want a pet octopus of…

As it turns out, the entirely imaginary Victorian Land Octopus makes an excellent pet. He's fiercely loyal, knows how to lace up a corset, is a master behind the sewing machine, and plays a mean game of hide and go seek. (The camouflage helps with that one.) Brian Kesinger's Otto and Victoria illustrations bring us… » 10/28/12 9:30am 10/28/12 9:30am

Watch this incredible slow-motion video of an octopus lighting up its…

The blue-ringed octopus is tiny, cute — and incredibly deadly. One bite from its beak could kill a human, and most sea creatures wouldn't fare much better. But the blue-ringed octopus shares a trait with poisonous butterflies. It has coloration that warns predators not to eat its deadly flesh. In the case of the… » 10/17/12 3:30pm 10/17/12 3:30pm

160 million years ago, ancestors of cuttlefish were already using the…

Researchers have shown that ink sacs from a cephalopod that lived 160-million years ago still contain traces of the pigment melanin. That's an impressive find in its own right, but what really floored the scientists was how familiar these pigments looked. » 5/22/12 9:25am 5/22/12 9:25am

Why Octopuses Should Run Our National Security Infrastructure

Next time the government wants new ideas about how to protect our nation's security, it should consult an octopus. That's the unusual proposition of marine biologist Rafe Sagarin, a pioneer in the infant field of "natural security," where experts use models from nature to help them come up with emergency responses to… » 5/16/12 1:15pm 5/16/12 1:15pm