Friday, September 26, 2008

the arc

Honorable Mention, Illustration: "Visualizing the Bible"

Also see my other blog for nice pics of "the arc":

And to cap off this post, a quote from Kelly's blog: "Okay, Patience: Across the arc of a life lived in faith, it allows the Almighty to be all-mighty." from "Flabbergasted" by Ray Blackston
[I have no idea of the context, but it's a cool quote! Cheers!]

Couple late links on Charles Darwin, Naturalist:
His tree of life: "I Think"
His faith & marriage: "I Do"
His r'evolutionary idea: "I Am"

Language and gesture:

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hominins ate seafood

<...and sometimes seafood ate hominins...>

Neanderthal exploitation of marine mammals in Gibraltar

C. B. Stringer, J. C. Finlayson et al, Communicated by Erik Trinkaus, Washington University, St. Louis, MO, June 16, 2008 (received for review April 22, 2008)


Two coastal sites in Gibraltar, Vanguard and Gorham's Caves, located at Governor's Beach on the eastern side of the Rock, are especially relevant to the study of Neanderthals. Vanguard Cave provides evidence of marine food supply (mollusks, seal, dolphin, and fish). Further evidence of marine mammal remains was also found in the occupation levels at Gorham's Cave associated with Upper Paleolithic and Mousterian technologies [Finlayson C, et al. (2006) Nature 443:850–853]. The stratigraphic sequence of Gibraltar sites allows us to compare behaviors and subsistence strategies of Neanderthals during the Middle Paleolithic observed at Vanguard and Gorham's Cave sites. This evidence suggests that such use of marine resources was not a rare behavior and represents focused visits to the coast and estuaries.

Neanderthals Took Hunt for Food to the Sea

By HENRY FOUNTAIN Published: September 22, 2008

The Neanderthals were seafood lovers, new findings suggest.

Paleontologists digging in sediments at two large caves on a Gibraltar beach have found clear evidence that more than 30,000 years ago, Neanderthals ate mussels and other mollusks, fish and even marine mammals like seals and dolphins. And it was not that this bounty just fell into their lap: there are other signs that they actively hunted some of their seafood, just as they did with land animals.

Yolanda Fern├índez-Jalvo of the National Museum of Natural Sciences in Madrid, Christopher B. Stringer of the Natural History Museum in London and colleagues identified the remains of meals, including bones from monk seals and common and bottlenose dolphins, in Gorham’s and Vanguard caves on the eastern side of the rock. The findings are reported in The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Some of the bones showed damage from stone tools, probably from the Neanderthals’ removing the meat from them. At Vanguard cave, the researchers found a hearth; evidence suggested it was used not for cooking but for preparing the seal and dolphin carcasses (for one thing, heating them would make the bones easier to break and the marrow easier to remove).

The location of the remains at Vanguard cave indicates that it had at least three periods of use by the Neanderthals. And many of the bones were from immature mammals, raising the possibility that the Neanderthals hunted during breeding season, when seals came on land for long periods to breed. Taken together, the evidence points to the Neanderthals’ making deliberate visits to the coast in search of delicacies from the deep.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Log some Laps Locally

Great apnea diving video by "fishtaco"
monofin freediving link

‘Save the EHS pool’ effort unveils Web site

“It is time for Loggers to show their stuff,” he wrote. “Go Loggers! Own the pool.”

Pool committee co-chairpersons Dennis Houghton and Brian Nunn also announced a new Web site that should be operational in about a week that will chronicle the fundraising journey, solicit support and inspire community members. At, links to “inspirations” such as the Sigrid and Harry Spath Aquatic Facility in Mendocino will be listed with the hopes of showing Eureka residents what a new community pool could look like. Still under construction, the new state-of-the-art aquatics center in Mendocino will feature an eight-lane competition lap pool, four-lane activity/therapy/learning pool with zero-depth, beach entry and play features that include a water slide and a 175-foot running-river resistance water channel — to name a few highlights.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Melville's classic dilemma

Captain Ahab (man) vs Moby Dick (whale) conflict resolution

Today, the battle is "crisis of the commons", where people keep dumping pollutants into the sea and overharvesting from the sea without regard for it's ecological limits. No one owns the oceans, and because they have currents moving materials around like the winds, a different type of ownership/stewardship system is required, different from land based systems, or else the oceans will be degraded.

Monday, September 15, 2008

"Stone Hole"

star pool

a bit of random imagery...

see a goldfish swimming in a round pond
directionless, here and there
bounded by the water surface,
the underwater ground beneath,
and the shoreline edge where
the air, water and ground meet

add a large stone in the center of the pond

now a new boundary exists,
a stone "hole" in the pond
causing the fish to swim in circles
now the fish has purpose and direction

Human society confines individuals
into niche cubicles with social boundaries
which gives them purpose and direction

But too many stones, or too many fish
produces chaotic conflicts (traffic jam)
while too few stones or too few fish
produces aimless confusion and drifting

(inspired from 'Ode' magazine, How to move a tree)

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Aquatic Power Events

On Sept 7th, Elaine will be debating her Aquatic Ape Hypothesis with Anthropologist Peter Wheeler in Liverpool.

ELAINE MORGAN Qualifications: M.A.(Oxon), two University fellowships, one honorary doctorate. Author of books on human evolution including The Descent of Woman (1972), The Aquatic Ape (1982), The Scars of Evolution (1990), The Descent of the Child (1994), and The Aquatic Ape Hypothesis (1997).

Elaine's Descent of Woman is a feminist take on Darwin's Descent of Man, based on Sir Alister Hardy's Seashore Human Ancestor Hypothesis.


On Sept. 8, Greg will be attempting to break the world's speed record for 24 hr, pedal boating his Critical Power II tri-hull.

Adventures of Greg: 24 hr Human Powered Vehicle pedal boat attempt

On September 9th, 2008 Greg Kolodziejzyk set an unofficial (pending IHPVA and Guinness ratification) world record by pedaling his human powered boat 245.16 km (151.3 miles) in 24 hours on Whitefish Lake, Montana.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Coral reef bleaching & malaria

Chromera velia, a unicellular photosynthetic symbiotic brown algae found associated with coral reefs, which leaves when the reef water becomes too warm resulting in bleached coral, has been found to be related to malarial Plasmodium and other apicomplexan parasites like toxiplasmosis.

Apparently, these blood-borne parasites derive from coral cell symbiont alga, and still contain vestigial chloroplasts (chlorophyll compounds, like in tree leaves that construct tissue from hydrocarbons using sunlight energy), but now obtain energy from their animal hosts.

Now, the question remains, how did a salt-water-loving coral-symbiont-algae evolve into a freshwater-nymphal-mosquito carried vertebrate-blood parasite?
or... did it?