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April 18, 2014

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5:30 AM | Dolatocrinus triangulatus? Crinoid Calyx Fossil
This appears to be a Dolatocrinus triangulatus? crinoid calyx fossil. It was found in the Thunder Bay Formation of Alpena Michigan, USA. It dates to the Middle Devonian Period (Erian).Learn more at the michiganbasinfossils.org web site.Thanks to Mary Ann for letting me take some pictures of this fine specimen.
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4:46 AM | Do Not Spray
Related posts:abandoned citrus electricity and beer Watering the desert, circa 1937
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4:44 AM | When the Clock Strikes Twelve!
When the hand reaches 12 noon it is time for the ‘day shift’ scientists to start work. read more
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3:59 AM | The Bottleneck Years by H.E.Taylo – Chapter 88
The Bottleneck Years by H.E. Taylor Chapter 87 Table of Contents Chapter 89 Chapter 88 Going North, June 15, 2060 I was worried about going North and leaving Edie alone while she was pregnant. She had another opinion. “Don’t be silly. I’m a big girl, Luc.” She took my hand and held it to her…
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3:02 AM | Guerrilla Drill-a: an ambush of drilling terms!
(teaser photo of our tool pusher, Bubba, with an XCB and RCB drill bits- by Cedric Hamelin) read more
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1:54 AM | promotional items
I've collected a vast array of promotional items from conferences, subcontractors, and "technical lunches" where a vendor is trying to sell something and we're trying to score free food. So here's the Short Geologist's guide to common promotional gear, from least to most useful.1. baseball cap: If I'm outside, I'm wearing either a hard hat or a wide-brimmed sunhat. A baseball cap is useless to me. And even if I were a baseball cap-wearer, how many caps could I possibly need? Or if a baseball […]
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1:37 AM | Great Lakes Ice Unprecedented? Hardly.
The headline above is on the Huffington Posts front page this evening, and it’s rather misleading. Yes, it’s been a rather cold winter around the Great Lakes and a cold spring has slowed the ice melt as well. It’s really not  that big of a deal however, and the claim that this will affect the environment for years is more than dubious. The ice was worse in the cold winters …

April 17, 2014

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8:43 PM | Science snap (#23): Pacaya Volcano
Pacaya Volcano, Guatemala, is almost continuously erupting, making it one of Guatemala’s most active volcanoes and a popular tourist destination. The volcano last erupted on March 2, 2014, shown in the image here taken by the MODIS instrument on the Terra satellite. Although the volcano has been kicking off since January, in March Pacaya erupted […]
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8:37 PM | The Confidence Gap – Excellent Summary
In the last few years the number of research articles/books/popular articles about women in traditionally male dominated fields (science, leadership in large companies, etc.) has been on the rise – it has become a hot topic! Every journal and magazine seems to want to publish on this topic.  Some pieces are more sensational or more anecdotal than […]
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7:33 PM | Geo 730: April 17, Day 473: Whale Cove Sandstone
Looking more or less north from the southern end of the city of Depoe Bay, in the foreground we see the basalt of Depoe Bay. The buff cliffs under the buildings in the distance are composed of sandstone, referred to as the sandstone of Whale Cove (a small cove just to the south), and the darker rocks out on the point are made of Cape Foulweather basalt. Overall, this represents a pair of Columbia River Basalt flows separated by an interval of sedimentation. It wouldn't surprise me to find that […]
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7:31 PM | A Visit To The Science Museum
Last Friday, budding paleontologist O, his mother and I visited the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Its paleo hall walks you through geologic time and is one of the best in the world! The gems and minerals exhibit isn’t bad either, but can use a larger variety of minerals and better labels. Speaking of labels, take some […]
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7:31 PM | A Visit To The Science Museum
Last Friday, budding paleontologist O, his mother and I visited the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Its paleo hall walks you through geologic time and is one of the best in the world! The gems and minerals exhibit isn’t bad either, but can use a larger variety of minerals and better labels. Speaking of labels, take some […]
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2:36 PM | When the Clock Strikes Twelve
When the hand reaches 12 noon it is time for the ‘day shift’ scientists to start work. read more
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2:11 PM | Mountainous Fib: Andes Lie About Their Age
New research into the height of a very remote Andean plateau reveals just the latest surprise from the Earth's second-greatest mountain belt.
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1:52 PM | Vitruvian Geology – Leonardo da Vinci and the Realistic Depiction of the Earth’s Surface
Leonardo da Vinci studied rocks and landscapes not only to improve the realism of his paintings, but also in an attempt to understand how the earth works. Leonardo was obsessed with water, which he considered a vector to erode ancient rocks and to deposit new sedimentary rocks, reshaping so over time the “living” earth. The running water is for earth what blood is for the human body – it flows from the mountains to the sea, then – so Leonardo – in […]
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1:36 PM | Tipping Points Annual Report 2013-14
IHRR’s Tipping Points project has now published its fourth annual report. It provides recent updates on the multiple strands of its research that combines different fields in the physical and social sciences, and arts and humanities. The project has generated a tremendous amount of academic research investigating the many different kinds of tipping points in […]
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1:17 PM | $1.5 Mln World Record Gold Crystal Verified
The 217.78 gram (7.68 oz.) nugget is a single, intact gold crystal.
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1:04 PM | The Code of Hammering
As field season returns in my part of the world, I'm gearing up for some nice outings. So it's time again to present my code of hammering. There are guidebooks that touch on matters of professional practice, and every rockhound group teaches its members hammer safety. But as an amateur geologist I practice a game between that of the professional and the rockhound. It incorporates a respect for the rock as something with its own aesthetics and right to exist as nature made it. See if you […]
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1:00 PM | Thirsty Thursday: Porter Ahoy!
OK. I actually started this brew more than a week ago. But then suddenly… time passed, and I didn’t blog about it. What’s up with that? So I started a porter two Sundays ago. A honey porter. This weekend, it’s … Continue reading →
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12:17 PM | Vitruvian Geology – Leonardo da Vinci and the Realistic Depiction of the Earth’s Surface
In the Renaissance (1450-1600) architecture and pictorial arts, but also scientific disciplines like astronomy, physics and medicine, experienced a rebirth and important improvements – but what about geology? There were some lone geniuses in the earth sciences – Italian artist Leonardo da Vinci (born April 15, 1452-1519) recognized fossils as petrified remains of former living [...]
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12:17 PM | Vitruvian Geology – Leonardo da Vinci and the Realistic Depiction of the Earth’s Surface
In the Renaissance (1450-1600) architecture and pictorial arts, but also scientific disciplines like astronomy, physics and medicine, experienced a rebirth and important improvements – but what... -- Read more on ScientificAmerican.com
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12:15 PM | Pseudopictographs
I found this interesting looking slab of gray limestone last summer in the Bridger Range of Montana, in one of the talus slopes on the north side of Sacagawea Cirque. The high-contrast pattern reminded me of something, but I couldn’t say quite what. Then I realized: it looks like one of those indigenous pictographs, where the artist puts their hand up to the rock and spits paint all over it, …
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12:00 PM | “O” is for Optima
“O” is for the Agfa Optima. The Optima series of cameras by Agfa were among the first ‘automatic’ 35mm cameras. That is, by pressing the certain buttons, it would select the correct shutter speed and aperture for getting the correct … Continue reading →
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11:00 AM | GeoCinema at the 2014 General Assembly
GeoCinema is the home of geoscience films at the EGU General Assembly. This year features 38 fantastic films from across the geosciences, so you can step into some soil science, dive into deep ocean investigations, catch a glimpse of climate change research and more! GeoCinema runs almost continuously throughout the conference, with short films, documentaries […]
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7:51 AM | One of the World's Most Precious Places, Under the Volcano
Yosemite Valley, hands down, is one of the most extraordinary places on our amazing planet. I have been going to Yosemite National Park three or four times a year for the last quarter century, and I never get tired of spending time there. The thousand square miles of national park that surround Yosemite Valley are incredible, but the valley itself is hypnotic. I would hope that everyone could visit the park at least once, but it becomes something special when you can see it throughout the […]
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7:48 AM | Citibanker: the age of renewables is here
Kathryn Ryan’s interview earlier this week with Michael Eckhart, Managing Director and Global Head of Environmental Finance and Sustainability at the giant investment bank Citigroup was arresting. He was in New Zealand as a keynote speaker at the Wind Energy Conference and Ryan asked him about a recent report from Citi, Energy Darwinism: The Evolution […]
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7:02 AM | Meesc
My previous post Policy? trailed off in the comments in a variety of odd directions, as long comment threads are wont to. So I’ll offer you this quote: For there are some people on the left who keep insisting that economic growth is incompatible with reduced emissions, and that therefore we have to turn our…
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5:06 AM | A Few Deep-Seated Bedrock Landslides in Whatcom County
Shortly after the Oso/Hazel slide John Stark with the Bellingham Herald contacted me and asked if Whatcom County has any comparable landslide risks. In terms of likely imminent threat, there are no sites in Whatcom County that are directly comparable to the Hazel Slide in terms of size and pending risk. The Clay Banks (nooksack-river-temporarily-blocked-by-landslide, nooksack-river-blocking-landslide-notes, further-update-on-nooksack-river/clay-banks-via-DT, and […]
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4:57 AM | Orthospirifer Lophophore Brachiopod Fossil
This fossil is a great example of the brachiopod lophophore feeding tubes preserved in a white quartz form. This brachiopod appears to be some sort of Orthospirifer. It was found in the Sellersburg Limestone that formed in the Middle Devonian Period (Eifelian).Thanks to Mary Ann for letting me take some pictures of it.
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2:18 AM | What is that? Wednesday: Realistic Dinosaurs
I’m a paleontologist. I’m a little selective about dinosaur toys… understandably. So when I saw this toy set at the drug store yesterday, I had to buy it – if only to protect unsuspecting children from buying it and thinking … Continue reading →
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