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In geological terms, a contact is the place where two different types of rocks come together. This ezine is a place to find content from my favorite web sources on the the creation-evolution issue, with a focus on the subject of geology. Just as the layers of a rock can be composed of many different materials, so my sources often differ in their assumptions and in their views on the issue, but their common intersection is the belief that this is an important subject.
(Image source: Glyn Baker, http://www.geograph.org.uk/reuse.php?id=167895)
"On the last weekend of November 2013, a rare weather phenomenon occurred at the Grand Canyon in Arizona, USA. In an event that only happens approximately every 10 years, the entire canyon was filled with fog. To heighten the scene, the skies above were clear and cloudless. "
"While the study represents an excellent first step in understanding how soft tissue can be found in fossils, it doesn’t solve the mystery of how it could be preserved for millions of years."
Jay Wile has a good take on Mary Schweitzer's latest foray into explaining her mind-boggling discovery of intact blood vessels in dinosaur bones supposedly tens to hundreds of millions of years old.
Dr. Schweitzer posits the chemical bonding properties of iron as a possible solution. However, dinosaur soft tissues have been found that do not have iron in them (http://blog.drwile.com/?p=10065).
Dr. Wile concludes, "If the study is extended and starts to use real-world conditions, it might explain how soft tissue can be preserved for hundreds or perhaps even thousands of years. I am not sure how it could be used to explain the preservation of soft tissue over millions of years, but I remain open to the possibility."
"This extraordinary discovery provides further evidence that the scale and rates of geological processes in the past often dwarf those we are familiar with in the present."
What I like to call "creeping catastrophism," which says that rates of geologic processes tend to increase with increased knowledge.
The discoverer of soft tissue in dinosaur bone now has a new explanation for its preservation – but does it really answer the obvious question?
Answer: no, not really. I mean, blood surviving for 146 million years? Really? And it's not even just blood, because other soft tissue has been found as well.
Joe Hanson (via a retweet from Gavin Schmidt) tips us to an interesting video that gives some insight into the complexity of measuring sea level. A good use of 3 minutes follows. Watch.
The comments are very interesting, too.
"The authors found a rich diversity of microscopic organisms living on the plastic. In fact, the diversity was so rich that they have decided the plastic supports its own little biological community. As a result, they call the plastic and the organisms living on it the Plastisphere. It’s probably correct to think of it this way, because the organisms living on the plastic are quite different from the ones living in the water where the plastic floats. "
"Just as you shouldn’t trust everything you read or see on television, you should never blindly trust information just because it is on a map. All maps posit arguments. Maps present information about how something is. All maps posit arguments. Maps present information about how something is. Just as there are no unbiased arguments, there are no unbiased maps."
This is a really good article that explores the idea of how to critically read maps. It gives good guidelines, techniques and questions to ask when assessing the positionality of the map. If you are looking for a video for a younger audience to teach this same principle, see this clip.
Tags: mapping, perspective.
Map skills are vital in the study of democratic place and space.
Exercise 14 :
Read the news and answer the questions:
a.What is the news talking about ?
b. There are two maps.Maps that is down has these questions ( Answer them ) :
c.Sum up the news ( five sentences in english )
d.Choose another map ( of Internert if you want ) and answer the questions 1,2,3 i 4. Add the map.
Send by moodle.Good luck¡
Long-lost Apollo data on lunar dust accumulation has been found, showing a tenfold increase over previous estimates. What does that imply about the age of the moon?
David Coppedge continues:
"Three aspects of the PhysOrg story might motivate reclaiming the lunar dust argument for an upper limit on the moon’s age.
(1) One is that the new estimate is 10 times higher than previously thought.
(2) Another is the steady decline in sensitivity of the instruments; it indicates dust is accumulating at a steady, predictable rate, at least at the three Apollo sites, rather than reaching a steady state.
(3) A final aspect is how silent the article was about the implications of lunar age."
Info and two videos of cool research (literally!) being done in Alaska by scientists from Columbia University. Check out the little critter above--it's crawling along the ocean floor under the ice pack.
Researchers recently examined a spectacular mosquito fossil from the Kishenehn Formation, finding fresh blood—remnants of its last meal—still stored in its abdomen.
"Ancient Antarctic forests were like nothing seen on Earth today, new research reveals. The polar trees had features of today's tropical trees and may have been mixed evergreen and deciduous. ...
Deciduous and evergreen trees have different patterns of late and early wood. Ryberg and her colleagues examined the Antarctic fossils and found that they looked evergreen."
According to the article, the fossils are Permian (248 Ma), and according to this article, the last plant life in Antarctica vanished 12 million years ago: http://www.livescience.com/14803-antarctica-vegetation-vanished-pollen-glacial-history.html
But yet there are original carbon molecules in the fossilized wood? I wonder what they would find if they carbon dated it.
This is a Google Maps image of the South Carolina coast just north of Savannah, modified with the Ink Sketch effect in Paint.NET. I like the way that the two rivers look like two leafless old oak trees talking to each other. Or two Ents, maybe.
"While a 200-fold delay in the decay of ostrich blood vessels is certainly impressive, even that level of preservation can’t hold a candle to the 99,800,000-fold increase in chemical stability needed in the millions-of-years evolutionary scenario.
Schweitzer quite reasonably makes a comparison to the fixation properties of formaldehyde. Many variables influence the degree and duration of the decay-delaying properties of formaldehyde. But specimens preserved in formaldehyde are not preserved perfectly or permanently.
While burial conditions likely influence the efficacy of iron as a preservative in any given bone, there is certainly no reason to propose that iron could preserve the molecular structure of soft tissue for millions of years any more than formaldehyde could."
Answers in Genesis weighs in on Mary Schweitzer's recent work on discerning the source of soft tissue preservation in dinosaur bones.
"An unusual article appeared recently in Nature. Three scientists -- a biologist, a mathematician, and a biosecurity expert -- offered twenty reasons why politicians should be wary of scientific claims."
Good advice in any field.
Image credit: http://freshspectrum.com/toon-cherry-picking-data/
"Rescued and restored microscopes, among the many mineral samples in the “hidden museum”, now refurbished and due to reopen to the public in the Quadrangle of NUI Galway next month."
If you happen to be in Galway, Ireland, and have a hankering to visit a geology museum.
"From Hurricane Katrina to SuperStorm Sandy to various massive typhoons across the world, the thought of a Great Flood triggers thoughts of complete destruction."
A thoughtful analysis of the idea of a great Flood in history, and the different camps into which Christians fall when considering its historicity or unhistoricity.
The first I've seen of what I'm sure will be a "flood" of articles discussing the new movie (sorry, couldn't resist the pun).
What does the stratigraphy of fossils suggest about the Flood/post-Flood boundary in the rocks?
Several people in the creationist geologist community, myself included, are skeptical about the conclusions Marcus Ross draws from this study, but it's an excellent illustration of the kind of serious research that's being conducted within the YEC model.
GeoGuessr is a geography game which takes you on a journey around the world and challenges your ability to recognize your surroundings.
H/T to Seth Dixon at http://geographyeducation.org/geospatial/using-geoguessr-in-the-classroom/
"A tourist sign at Torndirrup National Park near Albany, Western Australia, says granite formed slowly but geologists now say it was catastrophic.
In the Proceedings of the Geologists’ Association,granite expert John Clemens said:
“The long-cherished picture of granitic diapirs slowly pushing their way toward the upper crust and grinding to a halt by solidification has been replaced by an altogether different picture of narrow feeder dykes punching their way upward in months, pulsing with magma and feeding rapidly growing plutons.”
More creeping catastrophism.
"This video captures some amazing footage of the 2011 tsunami in Japan."
This video allows us to remember the devastation that is caused oversees. It also gives us the ability to plan years ahead to be most prepared in minutes the moment we realize a tsunami is on its way. It is dangerous to curiously look at tsunami flood waters when a matter of minutes is the difference needed to act before a situation escalates We will never forget the devastation caused to the ancient nation of Japan, and the best we can do is coninue to be prepared for the future to come with the most effecient action steps possibly to ensure safety and save the most lives
Oh this is quite scary but I think it would be great for kids to see in a unit on Disasters.
Every time you look at a Naturall Disaster you most likely see the end result. You see the before and after pictures. What you don't usually see is the process. Watching this video really puts it into persepective just how fast these things occur. It was literally 5-6 minutes before the once calm area was beginning to get flooded with water. It was amazing how much damage the tsunami caused and how quickly it caused it. I couln't imagine sitting up on a rooftop watching my home be destroyed before my own eyes. Fortunately for the people of Japan they were able to find high enough ground to avoid getting killed by the Tsunami, but the same couldn't be said for their city. It really is so shocking. It started off with just a bell warning and calm waters. Then minutes later the water was rushing in faster and faster causing more and more damage. Then in the same video we see it slow down again. Within 25 miunutes the storm came destroyed families homes and then was gone again. You always see the after math of what happenes during such a disater, but you never see the process in which it happens. Many people of Japan witnessed their city destroyed in front of them, and it was all within 25 minutes. It is truly mind blowing that something like this occurs in such a short period of time and causes so much damage.
Paul Garner's honesty sets a great example for geologists on both sides of the issue.
"When I tell a new acquaintance that I live in Utah, I 'm often met with a mild side eye. "Are you a Mormon?" is the question that always follows. No, I'm not, I explain, and I moved to the beehive state for a more unconventional reason. I came here for the dinosaurs."
Interesting article about the fossil awesomeness that is the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.
Criticisms by Kevin Nelstead of the magmatic model for the origin of huge salt deposits are answered.
Yes...I love this! A creationist theory for the igneous origin of large salt layers was presented here: http://sco.lt/5LckpV and here: http://sco.lt/5aAsAT , and then critiqued by a Christian old earth geologist here: http://sco.lt/5I0XqL
And now the proponent of the creationist theory is responding to the old earth geologist's criticisms.
This is how scientific debate is supposed to be done--no straw men, no ad hominem attacks, just focus on the data and have at it.
The yellow dot is Upheaval Dome near San Juan, Utah, and the pink ribbon is the Green River. I messed with the saturation levels and then applied the Ink Sketch effect, which seems to do neat stuff with Maps and Terrain view.
OK, time to stop photoshopping Google for a while.
Second in a series. This is a tributary of the Ogeechee River in Savannah, GA, at 31.964722,-81.070556, modified in Paint.NET. That is one mad tributary network.
First image at http://sco.lt/92RCHx.