Watch a disembodied cockroach leg dance to the Beastie Boys

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This is almost too awesome for words. For those of you too anxious to wait, the needle drop is at 12:00. For the rest of you, here's some background:

BoingBoing's Mark Frauenfelder is covering this year's TED Conference in Long Beach, California, and one of the 2012 TED fellows is neuroscientist Greg Gage. A few years back, Gage co-founded Backyard Brains, an organization dedicated to introducing kids to exciting concepts in neuroscience with affordable, hands-on experiments; experiments like the SpikerBox, a DIY apparatus that lets you see and listen to neuron activity in cockroaches.

In the video up top, Gage and Frauenfelder take the SpikerBox for a spin, but around ten minutes in, their discussion turns to Luigi Galvani's 18th century experiments with electricity and frog legs. By introducing some Beastie Boys into the mix, and channelling the electrical signal from an iPhone into a disembodied cockroach leg, Gage shows how he can actually cause it to twitch in time with the beat.


You can check out more of Frauenfelder's ongoing TED2012 coverage over on BoingBoing.
Learn more about Backyard Brains on the organization's website.