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Rosetta Stones

Rosetta Stones


Adventures in the good science of rock-breaking.
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    Dana Hunter Dana Hunter is a science blogger, SF writer, and geology addict whose home away from SciAm is En Tequila Es Verdad. Follow her on Twitter: @dhunterauthor. Follow on Twitter @dhunterauthor.
  • STEM’s Harassment Problem Goes Well Beyond Field Work

    Image shows a tuxedo cat with its paws crossed and a serious look on its face. Caption says, "This is unacceptable."

    D.N. Lee has a post up at her Scientific American blog that needs to be read right now. Here’s a pull quote, but read the entire thing. Now. No excuses. I know the SAFE research focused on field research experiences – mostly abroad, away from home institution – but many women are getting harassed out [...]

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    Adventures in Creationist Earth Science Education: In the Beginning…

    Mah three textbooks on me bedside work table, plus a glass of my preferred coping mechanism (a nice, crisp, late-harvest Riesling), with the kitteh in the background looking rather skeptical of this whole idea.

    For a while, now, I’ve planned a series on the kind of creationists who like to run around calling themselves geologists and invade GSA meetings under false pretenses. People like Steven Austin, who does real geology only to the extent it gives him a Trojan Horse into professional journals and meetings. These creationists have a [...]

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    A Rather Important Anniversary

    Image shows me and Lockwood hunched over the black basalt shore, with the ocean in the background.

    I’m terrible at remembering anniversaries and worse at communication, so this post commemorating an important anniversary is a day late. Lockwood reminded me that yesterday marked our fourth year since meeting in person. Happy anniversary! I can easily say that if not for Lockwood, I’d not be here talking geology to you. It takes a [...]

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    Finally! The Perfect Book for Geology-Loving Comic Book Fans!

    platetectonics_cvr_web

    Have you dreamt of a richly-illustrated, geology-themed superhero comic for kids? One that not only gets the science right, but encourages great study habits, turns ordinary encounters into fantastical geologic adventures, models kindness and heart-warming family dynamics, and encourages creativity, all without talking down to kids for an instant? My darlings, your dreams just came [...]

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    South Napa Earthquake: Which Fault’s at Fault?

    Image shows a kitchen, with open cabinets and a lot of wine bottles scattered on the floor.

    What the [insert expletive of choice here] is happening? That’s pretty much the first question that traverses most of our minds when the formerly-solid ground starts rocking and rolling. Those of us in seismically-active areas or who have had the sometimes-dubious pleasure of living in them in the past realize pretty quickly what’s going on. [...]

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    How to Stay Safe in an Earthquake – Napa Earthquake Reminds Us to Prepare Now

    Image shows the three steps essential to staying safe in an earthquake: drop, get under a sturdy piece of furniture, hold on until the shaking's over.

    California residents in the Napa area got a rude awakening early this morning when an earthquake of roughly magnitude 6.0 shook the valley. It jolted folks awake (and jolted the already-awake folks) at around 3:20 am Pacific time. So far, a few homes have been destroyed by the fires that broke out afterward, and a [...]

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    From Firey Flow to Cool Art

    A cowboy-hatted man emerges from the top of a column.

    Humans have a long tradition of taking rocks and making pretty things with them. Usually, when you think of sculpture, you think of marble, right? I mean, of course, marble – marble’s a wonderful stone for sculptors, very hard and yet amenable to people carving and polishing it. If I asked you for an igneous [...]

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    Fun, Fidalgo, an Ophiolite, and a Very Rude Buck

    Image shows B standing atop a dark black/brown bench of peridotite with a glitter trail on the Sound from the low-lying sun.

    We made it to Fidalgo Island. Yay! We got lotsa pictures of bonza peridotite and serpentinite. Double yay! I’ll have a proper write-up one o’ these days, but for today, we’ll do some outtakes. This time, we visited Washington Park. I’ve been there once before, many years ago, and had no idea that Cujo and [...]

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    A Study in Volcanics: 5 Reasons You Gotta Visit Mount Baker

    Platy andesite near Artist Point. The sun also got involved, making this photo particularly artsy.

    Outside of Glacier Peak, Mount Baker seems to be the least-regarded of the I-5 corridor volcanoes. Mounts Hood, Helens, and Rainier seem to suck up all the ooing-and-awing oxygen. Baker, not as much. But it repays attention. For one, it’s active. For two, it’s not monitored closely enough. For three, it’s got a surprising amount [...]

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    At the Beginning of the Universe…

    Ryan's First Meteorite: "NWA 2965- Exposed interior of the meteorite. Also shown is a polished sample from a different portion of NWA 2965." Filched with permission of author.

    …there was geology. Oh, I know, some folks will tell you it was physics. Yes, there was that, too. And there might be a few who argue for chemistry, and we’ll grant them chemistry. Of course those things were there. Can’t have a universe without them. Not a universe like ours, anyway. But geology was [...]

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