Wednesday, May 14, 2008
It seems we always learn these lessons too late, because this was all inevitable, some time, some day. But none of this can help the people of Sichuan now. Thankfully the PLA is getting every resource at its disposal to save those who could still be saved (unlike Myanmar), and those resources are vast. Godspeed.
Tuesday, April 8, 2008
Geopad is "the integrated combination of GIS software, a GPS receiver, and a Windows XP TabletPC (GeoPad) or a PocketPC Personal Digital Assistant (GeoPocket)." Sounds great, but I have such little experience with this stuff and really no clue where to start. My biggest fear is that I drop a bunch of dough on some equipment that will take a ton of time to integrate. On Inside-out, based out of Lawrence University, there's a good bit of blogged info on using this technology in teaching intro environmental science courses. I'm scrounging for info and hope that once this semester reaches its final throes I'll be able to dig into this a bit more.
But I mean check it out- how cool would it be to be able to do this:
Thursday, March 27, 2008
When this new geo major went on to say "Oh, petrology... I should take that class if I'm interested in petroleum, right?" I will again sheepishly admit I felt a bit better about my oodles of training. Guess if I don't have the big paycheck I at least have my work (that I like) cut out for me! As the housing market shows again, all booms will bust, but I plan on enjoying this part of the ride for sure!
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
This is a special Western Exposure report from the desert southwest of the US. My first venture to this area was back in '97 and in 10 short years there has been a world of change - human habitation of this arid ecosystem has skyrocketed. I read Desert Solitare after moving to the desert southwest in 1998 and was instantly smitten. For a geohead like myself the significance of anthropogenic scars on what was such an incredibly outcrop-rich geo-wonderland environment was heart-wrenching! After Desert Solitare, I moved on to The Monkey Wrench Gang and since then, my daydreams often involve small explosive devices at the base of those dreaded LCD billboards or legislation outlawing the creation of McMansions in greenfields when brownfields are in such dire blight or severe damage to any major place of commerce beginning with "Wal" and ending in "Mart".
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
What I'm here to do now, though, is to lament that despite the push to publish, we don't always get the review criteria for every journal before we submit. What exactly will the critique entail? Well, submitting is one way to find out! Once I've reviewed more papers I may find that the actual check list is meaningless. But right now all I can ask is "Is it meaningless? If not, what does it mean? Heck, what IS the review process for a specific journal?" Some have them available on line, but not all. In particular I've struck out with Journal of Sedimentary Research but found it available on Sedimentology. It just got me thinking about the review process and its subjective nature and how it might be good to give yourself a pre-review if you knew what the criteria were. Or maybe it wouldn't be good and would just be a waste of time. Or maybe it would be good but wouldn't make the difference b/w accepted and rejected.
Mostly I was thinking of this in terms of how to teach my students to write for a critical audience (me). I find they want details of what I want so they can tailor their paper to the criteria. But in the "real world" of academia (ok, I can hear the guffaws from here :) or industry for that matter, we don't often get such a detailed request. In the end, I guess what enhances learning isn't the way things are done in the "real world". So what should I teach? "Real world" or "learner-centered classroom" modus operandi? For now I think I'll try to do a little of both.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Humans have alteredRead more so much that scientists say a new epoch in the planet's geologic history has begun.here.
Say goodbye to the 10,000-year-old Holocene Epoch and hello to the Anthropocene.
Among the major changes heralding this two-century-old man-made epoch:
- Vastly altered sediment erosion and deposition patterns.
- Major disturbances to the carbon cycle and global temperature.
- Wholesale changes in biology, from altered flowering times to new migration patterns.
- Acidification of the ocean, which threatens tiny marine life that forms the bottom of the food chain.
The idea, first suggested in 2000 by Nobel Prize-winning chemist Paul Crutzen, has gained steam with two new scientific papers that call for official recognition of the shift.