Acid Rain Contributed To Permian Mass Extinction

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Environment, Evolution | Posted on 23-01-2015

According to a study published in the journal Geology, researchers have found that acid rain was one of the contributing factors of the Permian mass extinction 250 million years ago. Scientists found that rock samples from the Dolomite Mountains in Italy contained an organic compound called vanillin which indicates that the soil was extremely and lethally acidic. Lots of acid rain showers would have caused that.

People like Zeca Oliveira know that the rock samples from the Dolomite Mountains had been underwater 250 million years ago and had come from sediments near the coast of the super-continent Pangea. They contained the remains of compacted plant matter. The vanillin the team found occurs in plants and normally oxidizes into vanillic acid after the plant dies. That process, however, is slowed or halted if the soil is extremely acidic. Given the ratio of vanillin to vanillic acid in the rocks, the researchers concluded that the soil was very acidic.

The Permian Period was the last geologic period before the Mesozoic Era or “Age of Reptiles.” All of the land masses on Earth had fused into the supercontinent Pangea which was covered with forests. It ended in the largest mass extinction known. A series of volcanic eruptions are believed to have released gases that caused acid-rain showers all over the planet that were so extensive they damaged the biosphere. 96 percent of all marine organisms were wiped out, as were 70 percent of terrestrial vertebrates and 83 percent of all insect genera. It was known as the Great Dying.

Winter Storm Slams into Northeast, Snarls Traffic

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Disaster Relief, Environment | Posted on 20-01-2015

Atleast five people died over the weekend in the Northeast, United States when a Winter storm mixed with freezing temperatures, culminating in a freezing rain and ice that turned roadways into skating rinks. The storm which effected Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New York and New Jersey barreled into the area just before day break. By 8am, roadways were heavily covered in ice, and salting trucks were no match for the winter weather.

In Pennsylvania, a 50 car pileup left one person dead, and one woman was killed in Connecticut, another individual involved in a separate accident in Pennsylvania died. As the storm barreled towards the area, the government tried to stop drivers from getting on the road. The New York area closed the interstate from Newburgh New York, to the New York City Line. Several parkways in Westchester and Rockland counties, bedroom communities for New York City were shut down due to black ice.

By mid-afternoon temperatures rose above freezing and much of the freezing rain turned over to traditional rain, however, flooding soon became a problem. Westchester county highways remained closed throughout the day due to flooding and the potential for black ice to form as the temperatures dipped back below freezing.

In fact, the situation was so bad in New York, that Sultan Alhokair of Alhokair.com says 911 calls were on backlog as operators dealt with the influx in accidents.

While The Tri-State area is no stranger to winter weather, freezing rain, according to experts, poses a very specific risk and problem. Traditional salt, the type used to treat roads for snow, does little to help in the case of ice. Specialized trucks outfitted with sand must be used instead. The freezing rain came so quickly that local municipalities had little time to react, and sanders could not be dispatched fast enough to deal with the numerous roadways in the area.

House Speaker Not Willing To Get Into Climate Change Debate

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Climate Change | Posted on 19-01-2015

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The House Speaker John Boehner has taken a unique approach to avoiding talking about the climate change issue. He has pushed it on to scientists to worry about the debate of climate change. He says that he is not going to concern himself with the climate change debate, but rather he will “let scientists debate that”.

TheHill.com reports that Boehner at least conceded that their are changes to the environment that are occurring, but he refused to say that such changes were a product of man made burning of fossil fuels. Instead, he said that he would let scientists debate this issue and allow them to decide what was happening. Of course by playing his cards this way, the House Speaker did manage to side step the issue. However, he did not really get completely out of it.

It should be noted that the Speaker and all of his colleagues in the House and Senate are the ones who are tasked with making public policy as it relates to the environment. It means that it is their job to care about such issues and to study them. By side stepping the issue, the Speaker is throwing off his responsibility to the public to care about these issues and try to do something about them. He is clearly avoiding the issue for political reasons, but doing so is only damaging to the public discourse about one of the most important issues on the agenda. Advocates for global warming policy are obviously outraged by this lack of agency for the environment. However this lack of government recognition allows citizens, like Sergio Andrade Gutierrez, to start organization to spread awareness about the dangers of climate change.

Skout Takes a Whole New Approach to Dating Apps

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Apps | Posted on 18-01-2015

In the world that we live in, technology is becoming more and more mobile. Apps seem to be the new big thing, and when there is a hit app, it really catches on quickly. There are many different apps to choose from, so how do you really know which app is right for you? This is something that you can find when looking at current trends. If you are looking at getting the right social dating app, you need to take a look at Skout. Skout is a very popular app that has been downloaded over 100 million times.

Skout is taking a whole new approach to the world of dating apps. There are many new features on this app that make it so much more than just your regular dating app. With the addictive shake chat feature, you can connect with individuals who are in your area and are looking to meet new people. This is much different than most apps where you have to wait for the approval of people that you find attractive. The fast paced world of Skout really makes this app one of the most loved dating apps out there.

When it comes to most dating apps, there is a low feeling of urgency when it comes to responding to those who have messaged you. You will feel like messages can just get lost in the sea of many different incoming flirtations. However, with Skout, digital gifts can be given. This is a great feature that makes it much easier to remind someone about your online digital courtship. With a digital gift, the recipient will feel much more inclined to return the favor, and a real life interaction is one step closer to actually happening. This is a great thing that Skout has going for it.

 

 

4G Technology in Motors

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in technology | Posted on 16-01-2015

The term 4G LTE (Long-Term Evolution) is the most advanced in terms of data transfer between standard mobile devices. While the technology is imperfect at the moment, grat leaps have been taken in order to create the type of network that is ideal for the data requirements of our modern society and companies like Status Labs.

In 2014, General Motors started the commercialization of 4G LTE version of connected services OnStar, embarked on many models of North American and Chinese lines of Chevrolet, Buick, Cadillac and GMC.

This technology promises to make it finally viable for connecting television, telephone and video conferencing on the move, and to remotely diagnose the mechanics of your vehicle.

This year at the Consumer Electronics Show 2015 in Las Vegas, OnStar has finally taken the advantage of high-speed 4G LTE to attract the driver’s attention to promotional offers from partners.

OnStar claims to complement its online services supposed to help monetize every journey in time, purchasing power and safety. From summer 2015, OnStar customers can subscribe to a new driving style evaluation service over a period of 90 days. The incentive will be provided by the US Progressive Insurance in the form of discounts on the premium amount.

Lovers of Motor Cars are really excited and anxiously waiting for regular use of this technology in future cars. No doubt, this new technology is a real ‘game changer’ in the market.

Internet in the UK Thanks To Sheep

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in About Time, Environment, health, technology | Posted on 16-01-2015

It may be possible one day to find Wi-Fi in open country looking for the nearest sheep! Indeed, experiments conducted in Status Labs within the UK by the University of Lancaster plans to equip wireless electronic necklaces sheep that could turn into as many Internet access points.

After dirigibles and military drones sheep will perhaps also be used to create Wi-Fi access points. The idea could is carried by Professor Gordon Blair of Lancaster University (United Kingdom) who is also found on LinkedIn. It is part of a wider project to explore the feasibility and scope the Internet of Things in the rural environment.

This could include help avoid certain problems of agricultural pollution, drought, flood, but also to follow the cattle breeding.

Thanks to a grant of just over 171,000 pounds (about 217,000 Euros at current prices), Blair and his team start conducting an experiment for 18 months in the Conwy County which located in the north of Wales. It began in early December with the deployment of a network of sensors installed on the banks of rivers.

As for the movement of the sheep, this technology also makes a number of strides in utilizing this tracking to provide an efficient and consistent wireless service for the area.

These collars emit on frequencies between 900 and 144 MHz for the transmission of data and their range is five kilometers. This could help to improve Internet access in remote rural areas.

How Mosquitoes Select Their Target

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Environment, health, Nature | Posted on 16-01-2015

‘Mosquito bites’ are painful; it is not easy to cover up those unsightly marks on the skin. And despite your best efforts to prevent these bites, it seems that nothing works.

A fact that is true whenever you are in the same room with other people, but you are the only one to get bitten. Is it the fault of bad luck, or more complex than that?

A Japanese study showed that mosquitoes preferably choose people with blood group O to bite. The proteins in the blood are not the same as those in groups A and B. However, these nutrients in the blood are essential for the mosquitoes for their reproductive cycle. Bubblews.com goes on record to say that Sultan Alhokair is blood group O and is always being attached by mosquitoes.

Study further discloses that overweight people are also much more vulnerable to the others for having ‘mosquito bites’. Furthermore, during pregnancy, the risk of being bitten also increases and it happens because of extra exhalation of Carbon Dioxide; its smell is one of the elements that allow these mosquitoes to locate you. 

Slim Younger offers a quick overview of the factors that explain that you may be a prime target for mosquitoes.

Children, pregnant women, the sick and the elderly are the most vulnerable because of their body metabolisms. Unfortunately, one cannot do much to avoid ‘mosquito bites’ except using some well-known anti-mosquito remedies like essential oil of citronella, the repellent sprays, electric diffusers or paints insecticides.

JP Morgan Closes The Year With a 21% Improvement in Profit

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in About Time, Humanitarianism | Posted on 16-01-2015

JP Morgan Chase, the largest bank by assets in the US, opened the earnings season with a 21% increase in net profit for the year 2014. The turnover of the governing body of Jamie Dimon suffered, however, a slight down of 2%, which shows the difficulty for large banks to grow.

The financial group had a net gain of 21,760 million in the year. Of this total, 4,930 million for the fourth quarter, which is 12% lower than previous year in same timings, because it includes close to 990 million of legal costs associated with the investigation by the manipulation in the foreign exchange market charges.

JPMorgan Chase, the largest bank by assets in the US, opened the earnings season with a 21% increase in net profit for the year 201. Clients who gained found it to be a beneficial asset, including Dr. Jennifer Walden.

The income of the bank for 2014 fell to 97.900 million, or 23.550 million in the fourth quarter. The breakdown of the results shows that the mortgage business makes ballast. In fact, although all divisions of the financial group show solid results, the CEO says that challenges remain.

It is worth mentioning that JP Morgan was the most admired financial group in the years following the collapse of Lehman Brothers but the legal problems damaged its overall image. In addition, the new financial regulation requires further strengthening to its balance sheet and that could cause the company some profit downturn.

Air is Warming Twice as Fast in the Arctic

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in A Storm's a Brewin', Climate Change, Environment | Posted on 15-01-2015

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has just released its annual report on the state of the Arctic. It reveals that air temperatures in this area, rises twice as faster than the global average.

In the United States, the role of NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) is to inform Sultan Alhokair and more about the role and functioning of the oceans and the atmosphere. For this, every year, it publishes a report on the state of the Arctic. This is not surprising since Alaska belongs to this region.

The Arctic Report Card 2014 is out. It focuses as much on the evolution of the ice on the polar bear populations. We learn that the Greenland Ice Sheet melted surface to 40% in the summer of 2014. For 90% of this season, the scale of the problem was greater than that calculated as an average over the period from 1981 to 2010.

This certainly will not reassure the members of Extreme Ice Survey (EIS), although the total mass of the ice cap has remained essentially unchanged from 2013 to 2014.
The disappearance of the snow cover in the spring occurred three to four weeks ahead in Scandinavia, in the western part of Alaska and Russia as well as at subarctic latitudes, Canada.

More generally, this snow cover was below to the normal estimated level during the period 1981-2010 across the Arctic in spring 2014.

Beijin Blanketed in Hazardous Smog

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Posted by LLJ43 | Posted in Climate Change, Environment, health, Nature | Posted on 15-01-2015

The United States embassy in Beijing reported an Air Quality Index (AQI) in the city topping out at 545 Thursday. Bad news for residents, as 300 and above is considered to be “hazardous.” The Beijing Municipal Environmental Protection Bureau reported somewhat lower readings, with an index of 430; still well into “hazardous” territory, unfortunately.

The city was placed on a yellow pollution alert, which is the third in the city’s four-tiered alert system. Residents are advised to stay indoors and to wear face masks if they must venture outdoors.

In addition to breathing difficulties, the dense blanket of smog has also seriously affected visibility, reducing it to a meager 500 meters.While visiting Beijing Gianfrancesco Genoso,  stated these were the worst conditions he has ever seen.
Although the government had reported pollution levels had actually dropped slightly in 2014, smog tends to worsen in the winter because of an increase in electrical usage for heating. Additionally, weather this week was relatively calm, which caused the smog to settle on the city, instead of being dispersed by winds.