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Fossilization Requires Special Conditions

first_imgA science writer wrote a semi-amusing account on how to become a fossil.  In so doing, he pointed out that fossilization is a very rare fate for most organisms.Writing for National Geographic, freelance science writer and evolutionist Brian Switek quipped, “Pick your burial spot carefully if you want future paleontologists to find you.”  For those needing “Tips on How to Become a Fossil,” this article is for you.  (First tip is not to use a coffin.)Switek pondered this question when finding a footprint in a national park and wondering, “When I die, will I leave any traces behind in the fossil record?”  The chances of being preserved are slim, considering the combination of accidents that have to occur and hazards to be avoided.  (Note: the study of fossilization processes is called taphonomy.)  Here are your choices, summarized from the article:Sedimentary rock: get buried quickly.  “The sooner I can be buried by sediment and kept safe from the various organisms that decay a body after death, the better.”  Even that, though, won’t prevent the “ecological recyclers” (bacteria, fungi, burrowing insects, plant roots) from erasing all memory of your existence.  And if you survive them, your traces could be scattered by floods or other geological forces.The deep blue sea:  prepare to be fish food.  “After sharks and crabs had their fill, my bones might become home for bone-eating snot-flower worms that rely on the skeletons of whales and other benthic bonanzas to carry out their peculiar life cycles.”  Don’t count on recognizable remains.Desert decay:  prepare to be insect food.  “My drying corpse might become home to beetles and other insects that burrow in bones, their circuitous pathways permanently recorded in my skeleton.”  Unless buried quickly though, bones decay in the desert heat.Volcanic ash:  good luck.  Fine-grained volcanic ash has preserved some of the best fossils, like those in China.  Switek jokes that his favorite T-shirt would not be fossilized, though.  It says, “Future Transitional Fossil.“Muck:  good luck.  The exquisite detail in Archaeopteryx came from its burial in oxygen-depleted muck from an ancient lagoon, Switek says.His last paragraph underscores the rarity of fossilization of any animal:But even a perfect burial doesn’t guarantee discovery. In the millions of years of Earth history that lie ahead, oceans and mountains will rise and fall, and the continents will shift. Should my remains actually become a part of the fossil record, they may rest in a place wholly inaccessible to any future explorers. Even if I come to my final rest at an accessible spot on the surface, erosion might expose and destroy what’s left of me. Or there may not be any future explorers to find me. This is why the discovery of any fossil is a joyous occasion. In the face of so much destructive potential, a fragment of the past has survived and at long last been found.It’s interesting to ponder whether the late Harry Truman (not the President, but the lodge owner at Spirit Lake, Mt. St. Helens) became fossilized after being buried instantly in volcanic ash on May 18, 1980.  Even if he did, the chances of ever finding his remains are slim to none.It was nice of Brian to point out how rare fossilization is.  Very special conditions are required.  Those conditions were ideal during the Genesis Flood – an explanation that Switek (as evolutionary moyboy) is guaranteed to mock.  He doesn’t have to wait to become a “future transitional form” (where is his company?).  According to God’s word, because he refuses to acknowledge the clear evidence for creation all around him, he is already a transitional form between Homo sapiens and Homo reprobatus, most likely (because of evident exercise of his brain), at stage 2, “Professing to be wise, they became fools” (Romans 1:22). (Visited 119 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

South Africa’s new National Library

first_imgIts music library will have listening posts for CDs and a DVD/video collection which will include South African and African content. Speaking at the official opening of the National Library in Pretoria on Friday, Arts and Culture Minister Pallo Jordan said: “We are trying to make our libraries warm and engaging public spaces thronged by young learners seeking knowledge.” Jordan said an additional R200-million had been made available for building and renovating public libraries all over the country in 2008/09. The book stock will have a similarly strong focus on local content, and will be the only library in the city offering reading material in all 11 official South African languages. Warm, engaging public spaces Jordan said that access to information promoted critical thinking, particularly among young people, helping them to open up to differing, even conflicting, dimensions of the same issue. The aim, he said, was for the country’s libraries to have better staffing, more sensible opening hours, upgraded educational support material and other information resources, facilities promoting children’s literature, and more books in South Africa’s indigenous languages. 4 August 2008 Cape Town’s new central library, now housed in the Old Drill Hall, offers a wider selection of books, free internet access on 40 computers, a professional children’s collection intended for research purposes, an extended Art Library, and a Music and Performance Arts Library. Focus on local contentcenter_img Two state-of-the-art, multi-million rand public libraries opened in South Africa last week: the new National Library, built in Pretoria at a cost of R374-million; and Cape Town’s central libary, refurbished and upgraded to the tune of around R50-million. South Africa’s new National Library, situated at the corner of Proes and Andries Streets, can accommodate up to 1 300 visitors at a time and stocks around two million books, with capacity for another 3.5-million. The facility, which will contribute to the regeneration of Cape Town’s central business district, will also have a coffee shop, bookshop, meeting rooms, seminar rooms and an auditorium. “The power of written word resides in the fact that recording words transforms them into powerful means of communication, not merely between two people, but potentially amongst millions.” The upgrading of Cape Town’s central library was funded by a US$2-million (around R15-million) grant from the US-based Carnegie Corporation and R36.6-million from the City of Cape Town. At last week’s official opening, Carnegie Corporation announced that it would donate a further $2.495-million over the next three years to upgrade the library further. Carnegie Corporation president Vartan Gregorian said that libraries were invaluable to those who were engaged in lifelong learning, and who could not imagine an existence without something new to learn about every day. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more

South Africa improves access to services

first_img30 October 2012 The proportion of South Africans with access to electricity, piped water and sanitation increased considerably over the past decade, according to the country’s latest national census. Statistics South Africa released the results of census 2011, the country’s third population count since democratic elections were first held in 1994, in Pretoria on Tuesday. The previous census took place in 2001.Access to electricity According to the census, conducted in October 2011, 84.7% of South African households use electricity for lighting (up from 70.2% in 2001), 73.9% use electricity for cooking (up from 52.2%), and 58.8% use electricity for heating (up from 49.9%). The results also show a significant improvement in access to piped (tap) water in South Africa, with the number of households with no access dropping to 8.8% in 2011 from 15.6% in 2001. Nearly half, or 46.3%, of households have tap water inside their homes (up from 32.3% in 2001), according to census 2011, while 27.1% have tap water inside their yards (down from 29.0%), 11.7% have tap water on their community stand less than 200 metres from their homes (up from 10.7%), and 6.2% have to walk more than 200 metres to reach tap water on their community stand (down from 12.4%).Household sanitation Census 2011 also showed a marked improvement in household sanitation in the country, with 60.1% of households using flush toilets (toilets connected to the public sewerage system) in 2011, up from 51.9% in 2001. The use of chemical toilets (from 1.9% to 2.5%) and pit latrines with ventilation (from 5.7% to 8.8%) were slightly up, while the use of unventilated pit latrines dropped from 22.8% to 19.3%, and of bucket latrines from 4.1% to 2.1%. Municipal waste removal services also improved compared to 2001, according to census 2011, with the number of households enjoying weekly municipal removals increasing from 52.1% to 62.1%.Living standards on the up At the same time, the number of households living in formal dwellings increased, from 68.5% to 77.6%, while the number living in traditional dwellings dropped from 14.8% to 7.9% and the number living in informal dwellings dropped from 16.4% to 13.6%. Compared to 2001, census 2011 also showed big increases in household ownership of mobile phones (from 32% to 88%), television sets (from 53% to 74%), refrigerators (from 51% to 68%) and computers (from 8% to 21%). However, the surge in popularity of mobile phones and television came at the expense of radio ownership (down from 73% to 67%) and landline phone ownership (24% to 14%). SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

BuildingBulletins: Social Gets Hyperlocal With Apartment-Friendly App

first_imgRelated Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… jolie odell Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Can apartment buildings be communities? Modern times bear little resemblance to the A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, it-takes-a-village scenes of yesteryear; but one startup, at least, is attempting to foster a greater sense of community on a hyperlocal level.BuildingBulletins provides a simple, social interface for building residents to communicate with one another on just about any relevant topic. From community classes to Craigslist-style classifieds, the site lets residents connect with their neighbors and, as one of their cofounders wrote to us, “get stuff done in their building.”So far, user adoption for the self-funded site is fairly minimal; the most active building boasts 6 users who are residents. Overall, the site has 48 discussions happening in 112 buildings. Ultimately, it’s going to take more users in more buildings to make the site work. But the beauty of a hyperlocal tool like this is that even if only a handful of buildings have users on the site, as long as the saturation of active users in those buildings is fairly high, the site could be useful and successful.The creators say the site’s bulletin boards and other features, such as a live chat module and a building calendar, can be used to make new friends, create discussion topics, organize events, advertise real estate or rentals, buy or sell items, submit pictures and other information about a building, find a house-sitter, and yes, hook up with other residents to avoid that long walk home.As a sterling example, the residents of Barclay Tower in TriBeCa are using the site to organize a pool party meet-and-greet, complain to one another about the noise, gush about their respective dogs, and chat about the building’s lease capacity.We also particularly liked the Google Maps-powered auto-search features to find nearby restaurants, grocery stores, banks, etc. Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#start#startups 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market BuildingBulletins is a charming tool that fosters community within neighborhoods, something that’s decreased greatly in the digital age but seems to be on the upswing with sites and apps such as this one, BrightKite, Foursquare, and their ilk. It’s almost enough to make us want to move back into apartments again.last_img read more

Private sleuth, wife held for ‘extortion’

first_imgThe Anti Extortion Cell (AEC) of the Thane police has allegedly caught red-handed a private detective and his wife, while accepting ₹1 crore extortion money from an IAS officer, who was sent on leave earlier this year pending an inquiry for alleged corruption, police said on Friday. According to the police, the couple, arrested on Thursday from Dombivali in neighbouring Thane district, had threatened to defame the IAS officer, Radheshyam Mopalwar, using recordings of his purported phone conversations. Satish Mangle, who works as a private detective, and his wife Shraddha had allegedly demanded ₹7 crore from the IAS officer for not releasing those tapes and also to retract their allegations of corruption against him which were made earlier.last_img