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+ - Did dinosaur-killing asteroid trigger largest lava flows on Earth?->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy writes: What is known is that dinosaurs were killed off about 66 million years ago when an asteroid slammed into the ocean off Mexico

What is still unknown is the actual process

A team of geophysicists from the University of California, Berkeley think they have the answer

When that asteroid slammed into planet earth it probably rang the Earth like a bell, triggering volcanic eruptions around the globe which in turn contributed to massive scale of devastation everywhere on Earth

The timeline of the most immense eruptions of lava in India which is known as the Deccan Traps fell "uncomfortably close" to when the impact happened

"If you try to explain why the largest impact we know of in the last billion years happened within 100,000 years of these massive lava flows at Deccan ... the chances of that occurring at random are minuscule," said team leader Mark Richards, UC Berkeley professor of earth and planetary science. "It's not a very credible coincidence"

While the Deccan lava flows, which started before the impact but erupted for several hundred thousand years after re-ignition, probably spewed enormous amounts of carbon dioxide and other noxious, climate-modifying gases into the atmosphere

Richards proposed in 1989 that plumes of hot rock, called "plume heads," rise through Earth's mantle every 20-30 million years and generate huge lava flows, called flood basalts, like the Deccan Traps. It struck him as more than coincidence that the last four of the six known mass extinctions of life occurred at the same time as one of these massive eruptions

"Paul Renne's group at Berkeley showed years ago that the Central Atlantic Magmatic Province is associated with the mass extinction at the Triassic/Jurassic boundary 200 million years ago, and the Siberian Traps are associated with the end Permian extinction 250 million years ago, and now we also know that a big volcanic eruption in China called the Emeishan Traps is associated with the end-Guadalupian extinction 260 million years ago," Richards said

"It's inconceivable that the impact could have melted a whole lot of rock away from the impact site itself, but if you had a system that already had magma and you gave it a little extra kick, it could produce a big eruption," said Michael Manga, a professor in the UC Berkeley Department of Earth and Planetary Science

Similarly, Deccan lava from before the impact is chemically different from that after the impact, indicating a faster rise to the surface after the impact, while the pattern of dikes from which the supercharged lava flowed

"There is a profound break in the style of eruptions and the volume and composition of the eruptions," said Paul Renne, a professor in residence in the UC Berkeley Department of Earth and Planetary Science and director of the Berkeley Geochronology Center. "The whole question is, 'Is that discontinuity synchronous with the impact?'

Richards, Renne and graduate student Courtney Sprain, along with Deccan volcanology experts Steven Self and Loyc Vanderkluysen, visited India in April 2014 to obtain lava samples for dating, and noticed that there are pronounced weathering surfaces, or terraces, marking the onset of the huge Wai subgroup flows

Geological evidence suggests that these terraces may signal a period of quiescence in Deccan volcanism prior to the Chicxulub impact. Apparently never before noticed, these terraces are part of the western Ghats, a mountain chain named after the Hindu word for "Steps"

"This was an existing massive volcanic system that had been there probably several million years, and the impact gave this thing a shake and it mobilized a huge amount of magma over a short amount of time," Richards said

"The beauty of this theory is that it is very testable, because it predicts that you should have the impact and the beginning of the extinction, and within 100,000 years or so you should have these massive eruptions coming out, which is about how long it might take for the magma to reach the surface"

Link to Original Source

+ - The Programming Talent Myth

Submitted by writes: Jake Edge writes at that there is a myth that programming skill is somehow distributed on a U-shaped curve and that people either "suck at programming" or that they "rock at programming", without leaving any room for those in between. Everyone is either an amazing programmer or "a worthless use of a seat" which doesn't make much sense. If you could measure programming ability somehow, its curve would look like the normal distribution. According to Edge this belief that programming ability fits into a bi-modal distribution is both "dangerous and a myth". "This myth sets up a world where you can only program if you are a rock star or a ninja. It is actively harmful in that is keeping people from learning programming, driving people out of programming, and it is preventing most of the growth and the improvement we'd like to see." If the only options are to be amazing or terrible, it leads people to believe they must be passionate about their career, that they must think about programming every waking moment of their life. If they take their eye off the ball even for a minute, they will slide right from amazing to terrible again leading people to be working crazy hours at work, to be constantly studying programming topics on their own time, and so on.

The truth is that programming isn't a passion or a talent, says Edge, it is just a bunch of skills that can be learned. Programming isn't even one thing, though people talk about it as if it were; it requires all sorts of skills and coding is just a small part of that. Things like design, communication, writing, and debugging are needed. If we embrace this idea that "it's cool to be okay at these skills"—that being average is fine—it will make programming less intimidating for newcomers. If the bar for success is set "at okay, rather than exceptional", the bar seems a lot easier to clear for those new to the community. According to Edge the tech industry is rife with sexism, racism, homophobia, and discrimination and although it is a multi-faceted problem, the talent myth is part of the problem. "In our industry, we recast the talent myth as "the myth of the brilliant asshole", says Jacob Kaplan-Moss. "This is the "10x programmer" who is so good at his job that people have to work with him even though his behavior is toxic. In reality, given the normal distribution, it's likely that these people aren't actually exceptional, but even if you grant that they are, how many developers does a 10x programmer have to drive away before it is a wash?"

Comment: Please! Stop lying like that!!! (Score 1, Informative) 1029

by Taco Cowboy (#49609761) Attached to: Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event In Texas

Netherlands gun violence is high by European standards

And guess who is doing the shooting...

Those Moroccan kids here in the "gangs" are NOT MUSLIMS

Bold Faced Liesshould never be tolerated, so ... lemme get you guys the link ...
There ...

Click on the link above, son

Them Moroccan gangbangers are not moslems? Or you prefer to categorize them as Buddhists / Hindus, or even ... Christians?

+ - Two Gunman Killed Outside "Draw the Prophet" Event in Texas-> 2

Submitted by cosm
cosm writes: ABC news reports that two armed gunman were shot and killed outside a "Draw the Prophet" event hosted in Garland Texas.

From the article: "The event, sponsored by the American Freedom Defense Initiative, featured cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad, and scheduled speakers included Dutch MP Geert Wilders, who has campaigned to have the Quran banned in the Netherlands. The winner of the contest was to receive $10,000."

In light of the Charlie Hebdo terrorist attacks, the Lars Vilks Muhammad drawing controversies, and the American show South Park's satirical depiction of the state of Muhammad phobia in the US and elsewhere, is there an end in sight to the madness associated with the representation of this religious figure?

Link to Original Source

+ - SPAM: Islamic Terrorism in Texas, USA 1

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: A shooting has just taken place in Garland, Texas, near Dallas

The shooting happened at a partking lot at the Curtis Culwell Center where a "Muhammad Art Exhibit" event was held

Two men pulled up in a car and started to shoot, injuring a security guard

The Garland police force moved in and an exchange of gunshot between the Garland police and the shooters ensured

Two suspects have been shot dead

Although the "Muhammad Art Exhibit" event seemed controversial, the event itself is nevertheless protected by the 1st Amendment (Free Speech for the unintiated) of the United States of America

Apparently the moslems do not care about the Free Speech provision of USA, and this latest episode illustrates that all the moslems ever want is to scare and silence, and if they are given any chance, to hurt and kill all those they deem to be "Infidels

IThis shooting also tells us that America has been infiltrated by millions of moslems who will do everything, including terrorism, to establish a Reign of Terror over the freedom loving Americans, just like what they have done in places under their control

More links are at
[spam URL stripped]...
[spam URL stripped]...
[spam URL stripped]...

Link to Original Source

+ - Tweeter account of senior female IS recruiter belongs to someone in Seattle->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy writes: British's Channel 4 has revealed that the tweeter account of the senior female Islamic State recruiter belongs to someone living in Seattle

After Channel 4 has revealed her identity, it is reported that the young female student may have either moved to Saudi Arabia or keeping a low profile inside Denver, Colorado

Tweets from that account reveals that the individual loves American football and enjoys take out food

Why are we continually funding NSA if they do not even know anything about that senior Islamic State recruiter living INSIDE the United States of America?

Furthermore, if that senior female recruiter for Islamic State individual could reside in Seattle for so long without being discovered, and could successfully slip out of the United Sates of America so easily ( to Saudi Arabia ), could it be that that senior female Islamic State recruiter enjoyed inside help from the government of the United States of America all these while?

Why is Obama using NSA to spy on the Christian citizens of America and in the meantime never do anything to curb the terrorist support networks of Islamic States inside the United States of America??

Let us be fully awared that there are still A LOT MORE Islamic State active supporters living inside the United States of America, possibly with some kind of subtle assistance from the Obama Administration

Say *NO* to the White House which supports Islamic Terrorism!!

Link to Original Source

+ - Vast network of salty aquifer found in the Antarctic->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy writes: Many view Antarctica as a frozen wasteland. Turns out there are hidden interconnected lakes underneath its dry valleys that could sustain life and shed light on ancient climate change

Using an airborne imaging system for the first time in Antarctica, scientists have discovered a vast network of unfrozen salty groundwater that may support previously unknown microbial life deep under the coldest, driest desert on our planet

The findings, which are published in the journal Nature Communications, may shed light on how Antarctica has responded to climate change

They may even help scientists understand whether similar conditions could exist elsewhere in the solar system, especially beneath the surface of Mars

Jill Mikucki, a University of Tennessee, Knoxville, microbiology assistant professor, was part of a team that detected extensive salty groundwater networks in Antarctica using a novel airborne electromagnetic mapping sensor system called SkyTEM

The McMurdo Dry Valleys, situated along the Ross Sea coastline and discovered by polar explorer Robert Scott in 1903, is the largest region in Antarctica not covered by an ice sheet. It consists of an arid expanse of mostly dirt, small rocks and large boulders, dotted with a few frozen lakes

Co-author of the study, Professor Ross Virginia, from Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, said: ‘This fantastic new view beneath the surface will help us sort out competing ideas about how the McMurdo Dry Valleys have changed with time and how this history influences what we see today’

The survey, which covered 114 square miles, may have just uncovered the proverbial tip of the iceberg

“It suggests that this ecosystem is extensive and connected. There could be a very, very large subsurface habitable environment throughout the Antarctic regions,” Ross Virginia, an ecosystem ecologist at Dartmouth College, told Discovery News

The researchers believe the newly discovered brines harbor similar microbial communities in the deep, cold dark groundwater. The brines may provide insight on how microbes survive such extreme conditions. They also may provide the basis for future exploration of a subsurface habitat on Mars

Snow appears white because it reflects most visible light that strikes it. Anything that does this means you see the whole spectrum of visible light, which looks white

Other objects appear different colours because they absorb certain wavelengths of visible light but reflect others — a green apple, for instance, reflects only mostly the green wavelength. But, as reported by JSTOR, when snow is deep enough it can actually appear blue. The reason for this is due to ice crystals in the snow, according to the National Snow and Ice Data Centre (NSIDC)

‘As light waves travel into the snow or ice, the ice grains scatter a large amount of light,’ the NSIDC explains

While most of the light is reflected, there is a very small tendency towards more red light being absorbed than blue

When you see just the surface of a pack of snow, the scattering of the blue light is almost completely impossible to notice

But if you look into a significant amount of snow, about 3.3ft (one metre) or so, more photons emerge towards the blue end of the spectrum than the red end

When snow appears red, though, it is for an entirely different reason. This effect is due to cold-loving, fresh-water algae known as Chlamydomonas nivalis that contain a bright red pigment

Also known as ‘watermelon snow’, it is ‘most common during the summertime in high alpine areas as well as along coastal polar regions’

SkyTEM produced images of Taylor Valley along the Ross Sea that suggest briny sediments exist at subsurface temperatures down to perhaps -68F, which is considered suitable for microbial life. One of the studied areas was lower Taylor Glacier, where the data suggest ancient brine still exists beneath the glacier. That conclusion is supported by the presence of Blood Falls, an iron-rich brine that seeps out of the glacier and hosts an active microbial ecosystem

Scientists’ understanding of Antarctica’s underground environment is changing dramatically as research reveals that subglacial lakes are widespread and that at least half of the areas covered by the ice sheet are akin to wetlands on other continents. But groundwater in the ice-free regions and along the coastal margins remains poorly understood

More links at

Link to Original Source

+ - Could Nepal earth quake be twice as big?->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy writes: On April 25, Nepal was hit with the biggest earthquake in 80 years—but just how big was it?

Amidst the destruction, there was a spat on the issue between the US and China. The US Geological Survey (USGS), which monitors earthquakes worldwide, reported that the Nepal earthquake measured at a magnitude of 7.8. However, the China Earthquakes Network Center (CENC), which hopes to provide a similar service, measured the same earthquake at a magnitude of 8.1

While a difference of 0.3 in the magnitude of the seismic activity may not seem like much, the apparently small differences in magnitudes of earthquakes reported by different agencies around the world are, in real-life, huge. Because if we are to believe the Chinese data, the Nepal earthquake may have been twice in size than if we believe the US data

So who is correct?

There isn’t an independent body that can verify which of the two data points we should believe. Also, the discrepancy may be due to using different parameters in measurement: USGS uses moment magnitude and CENC uses surface-wave magnitude

Link to Original Source

+ - How China flew its first satellite->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy writes: 45 years ago, on April 24, 1970, China joined the "Space Club", when it successfully sent its first satellite, Dongfanghong-1, into orbit with its Long March rocket carries an article detailing the blood, sweat and tears account of what the Chinese scientists had to go through to get their first satellite launched, in spite of all the hardships they had to go through, — which includes been beaten to death by the "Revolutionary Red Guard" and committing suicide rather than endure more brutal treatments

The Chinese versions of the article are available at

Link to Original Source

Dynamically binding, you realize the magic. Statically binding, you see only the hierarchy.