Saturday, February 11, 2006

The Ecology and Informatics Logo

About our Logo

The Ecology and Informatics Lab Logo reflects the mutual relationship between Plants and Animals. For many animals plants represent food and shelter, whereas many plants use animals for pollination and seed dispersal. Over this symbology are binary digits representing the information age that we live in and that much of our research revolves around providing modelling of ecological systems, spatial analysis and the development of data bases and decision support systems. The colours are green to reflect chlorophyll and the process of producing carbon life forms in plants, and the ox-blood red represents the animal part of this relationship which metabolizes such compounds.

You might ask why a fly?

At the time I was reading
Nobel Prize-winning author William Golding's book Lord of the Flies which depicts the regression into anarchy of school-children stranded on an unihabitated island (proverbial Garden of Eden) following a plane crash. Substituting an ecological metaphor for William Golding's sociological metaphor we allude to human society and its regression through non-sustainable use of natural resources. The leaf is in fact from a "Plane Tree" which although an alien species has remarkable abilities to survive highly polluted environments and there thereby represents ecological resilience and has a global presence (also there are lots of these trees in our car park and it scanned particularly nicely). Finally we have added our URL ā€“ which is the main information portal and a web-site that is seriously needing a complete overhauled. The word "Planet" originally used a superscripted ā€œeā€ so as to read either ePlant or Planet and reflects our ancestry of when we were originally a Botany Department, and one of the first in South Africa to develop world-wide web resources and that our research and outreach operate at a landscape level.


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