Could 30% of the Water on Earth Predate the Solar System?!

A September 2014 study concludes that much of the water on Earth predates the solar system itself. Say what? Here’s the L.A. Times’ Science section article with more:

Some of the water molecules in your drinking glass were created more than 4.5 billion years ago, according to new research. That makes them older than the Earth, older than the solar system — even older than the sun itself.

In a study published Thursday in Science, researchers say the distinct chemical signature of the water on Earth and throughout the solar system could occur only if some of that water formed before the swirling disk of dust and gas gave birth to the planets, moons, comets and asteroids.

This primordial water makes up 30% to 50% of the water on Earth, the researchers estimate.

“It’s pretty amazing that a significant fraction of water on Earth predates the sun and the solar system,” said study leader Ilse Cleeves, an astronomer at the University of Michigan.

 

Shoppers’ Guide to Avoiding GE (GMO) Food

With Vermont’s recent court victory to require manufacturers selling food in the state to adhere to GMO-labeling guidelines set forth, it’s time for other states to demand the same transparency on their own grocery store shelves and restaurants.

The Center for Food Safety updated its Food Shoppers’ Guide to Avoiding GE Food a little over a year ago, and they provide some good resources to get you started should you wish to have the option to either avoid, or have labeled, GMO foods. Public opinion polls hold that a large majority of Americans want their food suppliers to clearly label whether or not their products have GMO ingredients.

From the Center for Food Safety website:

“We’ve seen that our government, under pressure from the biotechnology industry, has not required the labeling of GE foods. And the biotech industry does not voluntarily identify them, fearing, probably correctly, that the majority of Americans would avoid GE foods if given a choice. As a result, the U.S. public has been deprived of its right to choose
whether to buy and consume these engineered foods. However, this is not the case with most of our major trading partners around the globe who have instituted mandatory labeling of all GE foods and ingredients.

Continue reading

Our Imperiled Dwindling Food Variety

Some shocking stats: 93 percent of the seed varieties available in US seed houses in 1903 had gone extinct before 1990. And 1994-1995 were the first years that outdoor growing of GMO’s (genetically modified organisms) began, which started to result in crop contamination and further pressure on our international seed stocks.

This National Geographic infographic spells out some of the specifics (through 1983):

1903-1983 study by Rural Advancement Foundation International results.

1903-1983 study by Rural Advancement Foundation International results.

Needless to say, the situation has become more dire in the 2000’s. Continue reading

Audio Challenge:

A fun sonic quiz for any Rolling Stones’ fans. Hear the intro to 100 Stones’ tunes and try to type in the answers as quickly as you can recognize each track, simply using lower-case letters, no punctuation and only needing the first two words of the title to help you speed through the list that much faster.

There’s also a bunch more of the audio quizzes on the site, including 100 Classic Rock Songs, 100 80′s Rock And Pop Songs, 100 Rap & Hip-Hop Songs and more. Good for a quick break from coding, SEO and design work, or just to have a blast testing your musical knowledge while the clock is ticking… 100 Rolling Stones Songs Audio Quiz

Rinzai: I Don’t Bow to Either…

Rinzai visited the stupa at Yuji. The Keeper asked him, “Do you bow first to the Buddha or Daruma (Bodhidarma, the one who brought Buddhism formally to China from India)?”

Rinzai replied, “I don’t bow to either of them.”

The Keeper asked, “Why? Are you and the Buddha and Daruma enemies?”

Rinzai shook the dust from his sleeves and went away.