Recently, a friend posted The Deep Sea, a web-based visual guide to some of the creatures that live in the sea, organized by depth. The interactive site was developed by computer engineer/creative coder Neal Agarwal and environmental scientist Dr. Harri Pettitt-Wade. Each of the creatures you pass as you scroll down and down are represented with beautiful little (uncredited) paintings, their names, and sometimes a fun fact about them. And of course, the deeper you go, the weirder things get. For example, the terrible claw lobster’s name (and claw) made me laugh, the goblin shark made me go ‘yike,’ the black swallowers made me go ‘wow!,’ and the massive and super-creepy-looking Japanese spider crab made me go ‘nope.’
“Grab some popcorn, it’s a long ride!”– Neal Agarwal
I can’t say enough good things about this simple-yet-effective website. The deeper I went, the more curious I got. I ended up looking up many of the creatures I found, and I learned a lot. Did you know that orange roughy fish can live up to 200 years? Me, neither! And elephant seals can dive to 2400 meters. That’s 7874.016 feet! Also, I now want my own pet dumbo octopus. They’re adorable!
I think this website would be great for everyone, but I think children would be especially entranced. I’m not exaggerating when I say I hit Google for more information at least two dozen times on my way down. I think it would be a great way to get kids interested in marine biology.