SANTA CLARA – The Gauntlet. The Hellacious Hat Trick. Three-And-Out?Call it what you like but the 49ers’ upcoming three-game stretch sets up as the toughest of the Super Bowl era this deep into a season, at least based on team records.After hosting the Green Bay Packers (8-2), the 49ers (9-1) take a 10-day trip for road games against the Baltimore Ravens (8-2) and the New Orleans Saints (8-2). To ease the rigors of transcontinental travel, the 49ers will spend the time between games in …
1. Geraint Rees, “Vision: The Evolution of Change Detection,” Current Biology, Volume 18, Issue 1, 8 January 2008, Pages R40-R42.2. For a similar claim by others, see the 01/07/2008 entry.3. Rowe et al, “The oldest platypus and its bearing on divergence timing of the platypus and echidna clades,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, published online before print January 23, 2008, 10.1073/pnas.0706385105.4. Gratten et al, “A Localized Negative Genetic Correlation Constrains Microevolution of Coat Color in Wild Sheep,” Science, 18 January 2008: Vol. 319. no. 5861, pp. 318-320, DOI: 10.1126/science.1151182.Translating Timothy Rowe’s jargon into colloquial English (blue quote in bullet #2 above), he said, “We’ll, I’ll be. Shore looks like a platypus. How come all its brethren evolved all over the place while he just sat there? Musta been stuck in a Darwinian rut somehow. Better tell my geneticist buddies their clocks are runnin’ super-fast and super-slow all at once. The clocks musta e’en forced this little guy to evolve in slo-mo! Whatever. We KNOW dem bones is 120 million years old – that’s a fact, even if the clock is outta whack.” Darwinism is the perfect playground for science fiction writers (that is, evolutionary biologists). You never have to be right; you just have to look busy. You can tell creative stories, then celebrate when they are overturned later. The more complex the plot, the better. You have no threat of criticism because your critics have been expelled and put behind a sound-proof barrier. You get free checking for making reckless drafts on the bank of time (07/02/2007). The peasants don’t revolt, because they have been hypnotized into thinking what you are working on is science. Ah, the life of a Chaldean soothsayer. It was bliss before Daniel showed up.(Visited 25 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 Evolutionary theory evolves. Since Darwinists no longer consider evolution progressive, it follows that evolutionary theory is also not necessarily progressing. The following stories show evolutionary biologists backtracking on earlier claims.The pig is falling. “Darwinian evolutionary theory proposes that the phenotype of a creature is an adaptation to the particular demands of the ecological situation in which it evolved,” wrote Geraint Rees [University College, London] in Current Biology.1 That’s what he intended to show in a report on a study suggesting humans are attracted more to animal motion than inanimate motion.2 He had to acknowledge, however, that a completely different, non-Darwinian interpretation is possible. This led to him joking about why pigs don’t have wings:This suggests that the ability to detect change in animate objects represents a heritable trait that reflects implicit information about the external structure of the environment in which humans evolved, an intriguing possibility. But while intuitively appealing, caution is required before accepting such an argument. Jerry Fodor has recently argued that phenotypes do not always represent implicit information about the environment in which they evolved. Instead, sometimes phenotypes simply reflect internal constraints on the functional organisation of that animal. For example, Fodor suggests that the reason pigs do not have wings is less to do with the intrinsic structure of the environment that pigs inhabit, and more to do with the fundamentals of how the pig is constructed. The lack of wings does not by itself carry any intrinsic information about the pig’s natural environment, and has not been selected against in the course of porcine history!In that case, there is no information about pig or human evolution to be gained from the study at all. The findings about human propensity to pay attention to animal motion, instead, “provide important insights into the organisation of the human visual system,” he said, though he still held out hope that adding natural selection to the equation might inform the “discovery of the psychological architecture of human cognition.”Platypus granddaddy: News@Nature examined the case of the ancient platypus (see 11/27/2007). The bones of an apparent platypus 20 to 80 million years older than thought is causing confusion among evolutionary paleontologists. Timothy Rowe, the discoverer, concluded “It looks like the monotremes may have had a really slow evolutionary history.” Why the vast array of mammals underwent dramatic transformations in far less time, according to the Darwinian timeline, leaves a mystery why the platypus remained virtually unchanged. “Rowe thinks the creatures probably didn’t need to evolve because their hunting abilities were so fine-tuned,” the report said. This begs the question of why other predators with similarly fine-tuned hunting skills lack the evolutionary stasis, or why the platypus’s prey did not evolve so as not to be hunted so effectively. The contrary explanation, that this was not a platypus fossil at all, but rather a remnant of a common ancestor of platypus and echidna, requires invoking convergent evolution. A platypus-specific canal found in the skull would have had to evolve twice, once before the split, and once again after the split. The illustration caption simply reads, “Older than we thought.” The paper by Timothy Rowe et al in PNAS3 states the conundrum in scientific jargon:Morphology suggests that Teinolophos is a platypus in both phylogenetic and ecological aspects, and tends to contradict the popular view of rapid Cenozoic monotreme diversification. Whereas the monotreme fossil record is still sparse and open to interpretation, the new data are consistent with much slower ecological, morphological, and taxonomic diversification rates for monotremes than in their sister taxon, the therian mammals. This alternative view of a deep geological history for monotremes suggests that rate heterogeneities may have affected mammalian evolution in such a way as to defeat strict molecular clock models and to challenge even relaxed molecular clock models when applied to mammalian history at a deep temporal scale.Predators and unintended consequences: The simple view is that predators kill prey, leading to prey that try to reproduce faster in greater numbers – a direct effect of evolutionary ecology. A study with small fish called killifish that inhabit streams in Trinidad showed scientists a more complex view. In addition to direct effects of predation, there are indirect effects that may be just as important: for instance, the availability of food after prey are reduced by the predators. The whole community is restructured by reintroduction of predators. “Since predator-induced indirect increases in resource availability are common in both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems, the evolutionary consequences of these interactions are potentially a very important component of evolutionary change in nature,” said David Reznick, coauthor of the study. “Moreover, biologists have observed evolutionary change occurring on short ecological timescales in nature, on the order of a few years to decades, suggesting that such interactions are contributing to overall ecosystem functioning and health.” The changes he described, however, are microevolutionary changes to existing structures, not innovations. If microevolutionary restructuring of ecological communities can be witnessed in mere decades, it adds to the conundrum of why the platypus remained unevolved for 100 million years.Black sheep in Darwin’s family: Fitness is supposed to help you gain the upper hand in the race to survive, but the fitter black sheep of Scotland are dying out. Why? A study in Science4 found that fitness can work against you. Dark coat color is correlated to larger body size, “which is heritable and positively correlated with fitness,” the research team said. “This unexpected microevolutionary trend is explained by genetic linkage between the causal mutation underlying the color polymorphism and quantitative trait loci with antagonistic effects on size and fitness.” The finding makes evolutionary inference more difficult. “This result demonstrates the importance of understanding the genetic basis of fitness variation when making predictions about the microevolutionary consequences of selection.” The article began, “The evolutionary changes that occur over a small number of generations in natural populations often run counter to what is expected on the basis of the heritability of traits and the selective forces acting upon them.” When a scientist can’t expect what evolution will do, can Darwin really claim to have discovered a law of nature?Papa Neanderthal: It seems the story of our relationship to Neanderthal Man is back and forth. An article in the Australian News explains the problem: “For more than 150 years, a debate has raged over the origins of modern humans. The main body of scientific thought says modern humans migrated from Africa and then overwhelmed their more primitive European counterparts, the heavy-browed Neanderthals, or inter-bred with them. But growing credence is being given to the theory that homo sapiens [sic] evolved from the Neanderthals, who mysteriously died out some 28,000 years ago.” So no one seems to know what the relationship was. That did not stop the author from titling the report, “Bad weather helped evolution.”Tree trimming: Darwin’s tree of life just lost a branch. “The Tree of Life must be re-drawn, textbooks need to be changed, and the discovery may also have significant impact on the development of medicines,“ began an article in Science Daily. New research by European biologists who compared 5000 genes in “the largest ever genetic comparison of higher life forms on the planet” now lumps brown algae and silica algae together. “Previously, these species were thought to be completely unrelated,” the article states. The article ended on a triumphal note that researchers are making progress toward understanding evolution. Puzzles remain, however: “To make the picture a little less clear, one branch of chromalveolates is still in no man’s land,” claimed one researcher.Mammal disconnect: The molecular and fossil stories about mammals don’t agree; see Geotimes for discussion. Watch this space. (That’s all there is to watch for now.)More than a chimp: Be thankful for your DNA repair genes; they are unique. An article in EurekAlert said, “researchers were surprised to find the acquisition of functional response for certain genes involved in DNA metabolism or repair to be mostly unique in humans.” Some of the genes were shared with chimpanzees and rhesus monkeys; none were shared with mice. The researchers wove their findings into an evolutionary story, but admitted, “the full implications of these evolutionary points remain far from clear….”The new buzz: Remember the old story? The one about the meteorites that killed the dinosaurs? Scratch that. It was bugs. The new story can be found at The Guardian, which says, “Forget the meteorites – it was insects that did in the dinosaurs.” This can be considered true till the next revision. Hold the presses! Maybe it was acid rain, reported EurekAlert. But then again, that old Chicxulub meteor did make a mighty big splash, say the Longhorns.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation recognized winners and leaders in the areas of Young Ag Professionals Awards and Distinguished Service Awards on Thursday of the 100th annual meeting of OFBF.Video production courtesy of Ohio Farm Bureau and Marquee AV.
Remember my bathroom remodeling project? I took the liberty of gutting our outdated, decaying bathroom while my wife was out of town in April. I found some interesting air leakage pathways when I opened the walls. I fixed that. I found termite damage. I fixed that.Our 1970 condo didn’t have an exhaust fan in this bathroom because, hey, who needs a bath fan when you have a window? I fixed that. Here’s how.Bath fans are essential pieces of equipment for homes. One of their primary functions is to get rid of moisture. I’ve been tracking temperature and relative humidity in my bathroom for a couple of years now so I’ve seen the difference. The difference with the new exhaust fan is remarkable.I used a Broan exhaust fan rated at 80 cubic feet per minute (cfm). Most bath fans don’t get the amount of air flow they’re rated for. Heck, the majority don’t even come close. The typical bath fan gets about half its rated flow. I wanted to make sure this one delivered, and it does.Break on through to the other sideIn an existing home, the first thing you’ve got to do is figure out how you’re going to get the exhaust air to the outdoors. You can’t just dump it in a attic or other buffer space. Since there’s conditioned space above our bathroom (another condo), going through the attic wasn’t an option. I had to go through the band joist. As you can tell from the photo at right, making a hole to run the duct through was a major pain. If you’ve ever done this kind of work, you know the origin of those marks below the hole. If not, let me describe the process here.I had to go through four layers of material in this wall. On the inside, I had to cut through the 2×6 band joist first. Then the Celotex, which was the easiest part. Then brick. Then the 1-by trim board on the outside. The photo above was taken from the outside.Those marks below the hole are from my reciprocating saw bouncing out occasionally as I cut that hole from the outside. The saw would cut through wood, hit the brick, and then recoil. But I was still pushing so it immediately went back toward the board, and it usually hit below the hole. Hence those marks. Eventually I got the hole cut, the bricks chiseled out, and the 4-inch duct all the way through the hole. It was exhausting work. There’s my wall cap in the photo at right, shown with the flapper out because the fan was on at the time.I know what some of you are thinking. Exhausting below the soffit is a terrible idea because moisture-laden air will be drawn back into the soffit through that vent you see. Two things. First, I really had no other choice here. It was either vent there or don’t install a fan. I chose to vent below the soffit. Second, it shouldn’t ever cause a problem. The exit velocity is high enough that the air moves the leaves on the hedges 10 feet below. Little of that air will make its way back to the soffit. RELATED ARTICLESBathroom Exhaust FansDoes a Home with an HRV Also Need Bath Fans?Designing a Good Ventilation SystemExhaust-Only Ventilation Systems and Radon A Failure That Stalls the Certification of Many Energy Star HomesGBA Encyclopedia: Exhaust Ventilation It slides right over the Cape damper. I used zip ties and lots of mastic to hold the duct on and seal it up. In the photo, the left end wasn’t attached yet because I hadn’t installed the insulation jacket over it yet. After I did that, the left side got zipped and sealed, too.Should I have used rigid metal instead of flex? Some people might think so. I’m confident this duct will last as long as it needs to, though, and it performs just fine.How much air does it move?Of course I tested it for air flow once it was done. I tried it out in different configurations: with the grille on and off, with the window open and closed, and with the bathroom door open and closed. My 80 cfm fan moved an average of 66 cfm during those tests. The range was 50 cfm to 75 cfm, and I don’t completely trust that the 50 cfm was correct. That was with the grille on, and the exhaust fan flow device I used fit tightly over the fan and seemed to interfere with the flow.I’ve installed a few exhaust fans in my life. It always seems like it should be an easy process. Occasionally it is. That wasn’t the case in our bathroom remodel. But it was well worth it. Allison Bailes of Decatur, Georgia, is a speaker, writer, building science consultant, and the author of the Energy Vanguard Blog. Check out his in-depth course, Mastering Building Science at Heatspring Learning Institute, and follow him on Twitter at @EnergyVanguard. Yes, I used flex ductThe next photo shows the flex duct connecting the fan to the duct that goes out through the wall. It’ll be interesting to see if we get a spot of frost on the hedges on cold winter days.Preventing backflowI don’t trust the little flapper on the outside to prevent air from coming back into the house when the fan’s not running. And I certainly didn’t trust the flapper that came inside the fan. (That’s a photo of it in Image #2 at the bottom of the page.) Do you think there might be a little bit of bypass? The flapper didn’t even move when I ran the fan with no duct attached, so I just pulled it out.Instead I installed a Cape Backdraft Damper from Tamarack Technologies. It’s a diode or check valve for air flow. Air can flow to the outside because that piece of grey latex see moves with the breeze, like a flag. But if air tries to come back in when the fan is off, that piece of latex falls into the airstream and blocks the flow. The photo below shows the exhaust fan on the left and the Cape damper on the right.
Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) member Sourav Ganguly said there would be no immediate announcement of the next India coach and the CAC was in fact waiting to speak with skipper Virat Kohli.WATCH FULL VIDEOGanguly, VVS Laxman and Sachin on Monday interviewed five candidates for the India coach – Lalchand Rajput, Virender Sehwag, Richard Pybus, Tom Moody and Ravi Shastri. Phil Simmons was not interviewed because he was not available, Ganguly said.However, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) sources confirm to India Today that the Cricket Advisory Committee (CAC) is keen on an Indian coach.Therefore, it is now a race between Ravi Shastri and Virender Sehwag.They feel the presentations were at par and that is the case there is no reason to look beyond an Indian. More importantly and interestingly, the argument being made is Ravi Shastri, who has played and won so many matches for India was removed after two years and Anil Kumble — India’s biggest match winner had to go after a year and this is sending a very poor signal to the world that Indians can’t run their own team and we need a foreigner to do so.CAC members feel that to assume Shastri or Sehwag, legends of Indian cricket can’t run a team while a player like Tom Moody can is unfortunate.They say that how come Duncan Fletcher was given a long rope while Shastri or Kumble had to give way after short bursts?Based on all of these assumptions it is now a two horse race between Shastri and Sehwag while Moody has only a very small outside chance.advertisement
zoomIllustration. Image Courtesy: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license The NYK Group has launched a new platform for ship management that would reduce onboard duties and make use of Big Data.Named NiBiKi, the platform digitalizes applications, approval, and operation workflow within the safety management system.By following the instructions and inputting appropriate information in provided forms, crews can correctly apply for approval, and that information can be automatically recorded, thus ensuring appropriate procedures by the crews, according to the company.Moreover, the NiBiKi system enables data to be shared between the ship operation company and the management company, and to be accumulated for Big Data analysis.The data will be shared with five ship-management companies overseeing about 260 vessels. The companies are located in Singapore, Tokyo, London, Taipei and Kobe.The group intends to proactively use Big Data for further safety improvements and develop a more comprehensive system that includes crew performance records, such as education and drills completed. As explained, NYK seeks to grasp the tendency of machinery failure and accidents caused by the crew to realize “zero downtime” together with ship management companies.
Le gouvernement provincial a pris une autre mesure, aujourd’hui 7 avril, visant à aborder les défis économiques auxquels font face Yarmouth et le sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse en investissant une somme de 200 000 $ dans la promotion de la région comme destination touristique. Lors d’une rencontre avec les représentants municipaux de la région de Yarmouth, le premier ministre Darrell Dexter a annoncé que l’argent servira à financer une campagne de marketing pour la promotion des Côtes acadiennes et Yarmouth sur le marché du Canada atlantique, qui représente environ la moitié de plus de deux millions de personnes qui visitent la Nouvelle-Écosse chaque année. « Cet investissement fait partie de nos efforts continus visant à encourager le tourisme et à assurer une croissance économique durable à Yarmouth et dans les autres communautés du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse, a dit le premier ministre Dexter. Cette campagne s’ajoute aux efforts conjoints du gouvernement, des membres de l’industrie et des représentants municipaux visant à trouver de nouvelles façons d’améliorer la vie des familles dans chaque région. » La campagne, qui inclura la promotion à la télévision, dans les journaux et en ligne, mettra en vedette les expériences uniques et diversifiées de la région, notamment la richesse de la musique, de l’art et de la culture de la communauté acadienne, les villes et villages maritimes, les activités sensationnelles en plein air et la cuisine de renommée internationale. Les Côtes acadiennes et Yarmouth seront présentées au marché lucratif du Canada atlantique comme une destination intéressante pour une escapade ou des vacances. Depuis février, le personnel du ministère du Tourisme, de la Culture et du Patrimoine collabore avec des représentants des Côtes acadiennes et Yarmouth et d’autres intervenants du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse pour contribuer à la planification du développement de nouveaux marchés touristiques. Cette campagne s’ajoutera également aux efforts de Team West, une initiative conjointe de développement économique lancée dans le but de mettre en commun les ressources du gouvernement et des parties intéressées dans la région de Yarmouth et du sud-ouest de la Nouvelle-Écosse.
HAPPY VALLEY GOOSE BAY, N.L. – A mayor of a Labrador community remains in hospital after being wounded in a hunting accident on Saturday.Officials in Happy Valley Goose Bay, N.L., are confirming Mayor John Hickey was involved in a hunting accident but are providing few other details.St. John’s radio station VOCM is reporting Hickey suffered a gunshot wound to the face and underwent surgery on Sunday.VOCM says RCMP indicated Hickey is sedated and unconscious in a St. John’s hospital.In a statement issued Sunday Happy Valley Goose Bay deputy mayor Wally Anderson says the community’s thoughts and prayers are with Hickey and his family.He says the council will continue to operate normally in Hickey’s absence.“At this time, we need to proceed with regular town operations as if Mayor Hickey were present,” Anderson said in the statement. “This is something council knows he would want, especially as we are in the midst of the 2018 budget process.”The community is organizing a candle light vigil for the community but a precise time and location haven’t been determined yet.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Province has announced new funding to build a new elementary school in Fort St. John across from the Fort St. John Hospital.The Province is providing up to $30.8 million to build the school and the Peace River North School District will contribute $300,000. Construction is set to begin summer 2019. The school is scheduled to open in fall 2021, with 505 spaces for students in kindergarten to Grade 6. The school will be located across the street from the Fort St. John Hospital on 112th Avenue.“Our government has committed to addressing the backlog of capital projects in fast-growing communities. We’re investing in our children and working hard to build schools that are desperately needed,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Education. “Students deserve to go to school in modern, healthy learning environments, so they can thrive in their education, and succeed in life.” The new school will accommodate the growing population in Fort St. John. Since 2012, the city’s hospital has had more than 600 births each year. The birth rate, combined with 2016 Statistics Canada Census data, indicates there may be hundreds of new students entering the school system yearly for the foreseeable future.“We’re excited to have approval from the Ministry of Education to move forward on a second new elementary school,” said Jaret Thompson, Peace River North School Board deputy chair. “Our district has been challenged with space pressures for some time, and we’re glad to begin work on this second innovative learning space, situated in the northeast side of the city.”Plans for the two-storey facility include a neighbourhood learning centre with child care, before-and-after school care and multi-purpose spaces for community use. Given the harsh winter climate in northern B.C., indoor sports and activity areas are important. This space will contribute to Fort St. John’s goal of being a healthier community.“School District 60 (Peace River North) is committed to providing our students with innovative learning spaces in which they can develop their full potential,” said Dave Sloan, Peace River North School District superintendent. “New schools, such as the one being announced today, help us meet that commitment by providing new spaces for our rapidly growing student population.”
New Delhi: Trinamool Congress strongman and Bhatpara MLA Arjun Singh is all set to join the BJP here in the presence of senior party leaders, party sources said on Thursday. The legislator was miffed with the Trinamool leadership as he was denied a Lok Sabha ticket from Barrackpore parliamentary constituency, presently represented by Dinesh Trivedi. Singh on Thursday reached here and met Bharatiya Janata Party leaders Kailash Vijayvargiya and Mukul Roy, in whose presence he will join the saffron party on Thursday afternoon. He is also likely to be fielded from Barrackpore parliamentary constituency.