Item#4 Amethyst

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Ametistul este o varietate de cuart, in carui structura cristalina s-au infliltrat impuritati (de tipul atomilor de fier, etc). Cea mai apreciata culoare este cea violeta (mov). Se folosesc ca geme. Indivizii cristalini (cuart drept si stang) evidentiata stresul mecanic la care a fost supusa mostra.

Amethyst is a quartz variety, the purple color is given by the impurities in the micro-crystal structure (by iron ions). The purple color is the most valued.


This item is dedicated to Dana H.

The photos can be used if source is acknowledged.

Comentariu liric asupra salbaticiei

Viaţa sălbatică oferă cele mai mutle ocazii pentru a face fotografii. Nici nu ar putea să fie altfel. Este o lume de care, în mod paradoxal, ne -am şi apropiat (prin intermediul atâtor informaţii şi noi cunoştinţe, prin intermediul programelor de documentare TV, şi chiar a cataloagelor de acest gen) dar ne-am şi depărtat în acelaşi timp. Suntem totuşi, zi de zi, departe de sălbăticie şi nu mai avem timp pentru ceva care încet încet ar putea să se piardă. Sălbăticia are o puterea ciudată asupra noastră, ne face să trăim mai conştienţi de noi înşine, mai excitaţi la nivel cortical. Ea ne dă asigurarea că atunci când va fi să murim vom şti că am trăit cu adevărat. Poate fi sălbăticia, natura, generatorul unor astfel de sentimente?

Când privesc aceste fotografii formidabile, sunt invadat de tot soiul de sentimente… încântare faţă de explozia de culoare de la tropice, …teamă şi siguranţă deopotrivă în creşa pufoasă a pinguinilor imperiali, …îngrijorare privind statisticile legate de ritmul nebun în care păduri întregi sunt culcate la pământ, …revoltă faţă de situaţia disperată a gorilelor cu spatele argintiu, aceste creaturi cu o privire, la fel ca şi alte animale, aproape umană… măreţia ce mă umple în faţa luptei dintre doi urşi polari.

Există o incredibilă diversitate a formelor de viaţă şi e nu e greu să constat extraordinara adaptare la mediul în care aceste animale trăiesc. Genomul care asigură atâta plasticitate este o minune. O minune a creativităţii, nu a unui proces orb lipsit de poezie. Găsesc un singur cuvânt potrivit pentru a descrie imaginile: ele vorbesc despre Frumuseţe. Şi sunt copleşit.

Îmi vin în fire. Aproape că mă ruşinez de sentimentele mele. Doar ştiu că creierul meu a evoluat ca urmare a unor materiale procese fiziologice determinate de către constrângeri evolutive. Astfel am devenit conştient şi pot cerceta lucrurile din jur. Frumuseaţea nu are niciun scop, nicio justificare, nicio utilitate. De fapt, ea NU exista. Este doar o amăgire pe care creierul o produce pentru a mă captiva, pentru a mă ţine ocupat, pentru a nu observa realitatea aşa cum este. Lipsită de frumuseţe.’

Îmi revin… din nou. Căci Frumuseţea însăşi mă face să raţionez. Nu autosugestia. Ceea ce este în afara mea ma determină să constat că nu creierul decide cum să interpreteze ceea ce înregistrează, ci însăşi natura îmi îndreaptă privirile spre altceva. De fapt spre Cineva. Aşa că acest Creator nu este doar inteligent… ci şi sursă a frumuseţii.

(acest comentariu este o reactie la albumul Best 100 Photos WILDLIFE – National Geografic Romania)

Comment on BBC`s “War on science”

Well, well, well… BBC is concerned about the ID movement. They see it as a threat to science. So they did this “A war on science” documentary. And it seems that they take Intelligent Design as a “a new explanation”, although in the end they conclude that is just another form of creationism. It is the same old story, “a battle between faith and knowledge”, some kind of strange panic feeling being projected (when they state “the beginning of a dark age in science”). I am not that concerned. Are they worried? The video is worth watching, I would say… in the end the creationist do get some kind of publicity. Some kind of irony against the scientist can be felt and the editing of the video is clearly meant to influence the viewer`s sub-consciousness (like for example putting a very happy tune when stating that the creationism was finally banned from the curricula).
Creationist scientist who appear on this video: Phillip Johnson, Stephen Meyer, Michael Behe, William Dembsky. As you see, la crème de la crème… They talk about two important issues – the principle of irreducible complexity (by which he means that a system composed form various interacting and interdependent smaller parts could have not ‘evolved’, so that it would not have been able to develop while already functioning) and mathematical probability.
The evolutionist response is given by Kenneth Miller (who gives a reasonable answer in my opinion on the flagellum issue, but messing up with the message to the American people), Richard Dawkins (who is 99% percent “wright”) and of course all time superstar David Attenborough (I have to admit that he has a good point at the very end of the video, when stating “if you find something that you don`t understand, you can say that it was created by a divine spirit, …but answers nothing really. It simply says we don`t know”).
Another annoying thing was the so called set up for Cardinal Christoph Schonborn pro-Intelligent Design speech. The cardinal`s position is well known. So I consider that that was pretty low on BBC`s account. And the explanation of the Vatican`s Astronomy Observatory`s employee was hilarious: “If the pope [John Paul II] were living, he never gotten away with it”.

Some of the ideas (by the narrator) that lack irrefutable scientific support can be read below (please watch video for context):

“Natural selection explained how life evolved form the first simple organisms”.

[Natural selection is a process by which some of the favorable traits (which assure a greater adaptability to the changing conditions of the environment) in the parents are passed to the next generation and become more frequent in the phenotype of that particular organism. The better adapted organisms are more likely to survive in the environment and their population replaces the old one. In the end, the species can become very specialized, and it`s power to adapt if new environmental condition emerge drops. So it is very like too become extinct. Or to evolve, which has not been observed up to now, nor can be easily predicted having regard of the genotype constraints. Of course, mutations could interfere…. bla bla]

“The survival of the fittest allowed the species to change and developed until new species arrived, over billions of years, the diversity on earth”.
[That is quite a shortcut over them billions of year] 🙂
“They doubt that natural selection can produce the complexity of life”

[That maybe a careless statement. What produces in fact the complexity of life? Natural selection is a fact, we see it at work day by day. But what makes life be so complex? That`s a hard one for me… ]

Watch the video here: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6227704432876595996

Item#3: Quartz

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Cristalul de β-cuarţ (SiO2) prezentat aici este caracteristic clasei trigonale şi cristalizează sub temperatura de 573 grade Celsius. În detaliu se pot observa indivizii cristalini eliminaţi în etapa creşterii paralele.

Culoare: frecvent incolor, până la diferit colorat (varietăţi)

Urmă: incoloră

Luciu: sticlos, gras în spartură

Transparenţa: transparent sau translucid

Clivaj: absent, Spărtură: concoidală

Duritate: 7 [Moh`s], 120 pe scara absolută

Densitate: 2,65

The β-quartz (SiO2) is characteristic for the trigonal crystal system and is formed under 573 degrees Celsius. In the detail the individuals exceeded in the parallel growth phase can be seen.

The photos can be used if source is acknowledged.

 

New Pain of Salvation DVD (2008)

The new Live DVD “Ending themes on the two deaths of Pain of Salvation” from the Swedish progressive metal band is almost finally done! 😀

The official web site states that the dvd has been mixed and mastered this week. they are working on commentary and bonus materials. I hope that there will be a 2DVD deluxe special edition. 🙂 Hehe… I was right on this one, back in January.

the show from Netherlands, recorded for this live realase, had this play-list:

01. Scarsick (Scarsick)
02. America (Scarsick)
03. ! (Entropia)
04. Nightmist (Entropia)
05. Handful of Nothing (One Hour By The Concrete Lake)
06. New Year’s Eve (One Hour By The Concrete Lake)
07. Ashes (The Perfect Element Part I)
08. Undertow (Remedy Lane)
09. This Heart of Mine/Song for the Innocent (Remedy Lane/The Perfect Element Part I)
10. Chain Sling (Remedy Lane)
11. Diffidentia (Be)
12. Flame to the Moth (Scarsick)
13. Disco Queen (Scarsick)
14. Hallelujah (Leonard Cohen)
15. Cribcaged (Scarsick)
16. Used (The Perfect Element Part I)

The DVD is now waiting to be released. It will be a double feature consisting of a documentary and a live show, together with a thick booklet and bonus material. There will also be a Limited Edition available with the live show included as a double CD. Seems like the label is InsideOut – But nothing on thier home page.

Item#2: Native Copper

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Cuprul nativ apare ca depozit hidrotermal asociat cu alterarea rocilor eruptive si vulcanice sau in infiltratiile poroase ale rocilor sedimentare. Ocurenta este comuna, insa doar in cantitati foarte mici.

Native copper occurs as a hydrothermal deposit associated with alteration of igneous and volcanic rocks, or infiltrating porous sedimentary rocks. Native copper, though widely distributed, occurs only in small amounts.

Sistemul de cristalizare/ Cristal system: cubic

Habitus: dendritic, ramuros; cristale cubice sau dodecaedrice/ dendritic, branching forms, cubic or rhombododecahedral crystals.

Culoare/ Colour: rosu/ copper-red

Clivaj/ Cleavage: nu/ none

Duritate/ Hardness: 2.5-3

Luciu/ Luster: metalic

Transparenta/ Transparency: opac

Alte proprietati/ Other: ductil, solubil in acid azotic; ductility, readily soluble in nitric acid.

The photos can be used if source is acknowledged.