Gleanings of the Week Ending May 4, 2019

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Exploring the Parks: White Sands National Monument – Another place I want to return to and spend a bit more time. I’ve been once when we were on the way from Dallas to Tucson. I posted about it back in 2013. We stayed long enough to have a picnic, walk along the boardwalk trail, and photograph cliff swallows at the visitor center.

New Analysis of Depression-Era Fossil Hunt Shows Texas Coast Was Once a 'Serengeti' | Smart News | Smithsonian – Research on collections made by the Works Progress Administration and mostly just stored since the 1940s….Other states than Texas probably have research projects on these collections as well.

IYPT 2019 Elements 020: Calcium: Teeth, bones and cheese | Compound Interest – Another article in the International Year of the Periodic Table series. Did you know that the human body contains about 1 kilogram of calcium?

Image of the Day: High Contrast | The Scientist Magazine® - The milkweed bug! The milkweed is just beginning to come up so I haven’t seen any of these bugs yet this year…but they’ll come out soon enough. I’ll try to remember some of this article next time I see the bug with a group of field trip hikers!

12 Famous Flower Paintings, from Monet to Mondrian – A little eye candy. Notice that there are insects with the flowers in the Ambrosius Bosschaert painting.

An invasive, thorny tree is taking over Africa – can it be stopped? – It’s not just the US that has problems with invasive plants and animals brought from elsewhere in the world. The Mesquite tree that is problematic in Africa came from South America.

Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the week: April and Waterbirds – Catching up a little on the series…two this week and there are still some left for the next gleanings collection.

‘Exquisitely Preserved’ Skin Impressions Found in Dinosaur Footprints | Smart News | Smithsonian – The prints are from a small theropod. Not only do they show the impression left by skin…they also indicate the dinosaur was in Korea earlier than previously thought (10-20 million years earlier).

Electric Cars Could Be as Affordable as Conventional Vehicles in Just Three Years - Yale E360 – EV technologies are developing rapidly. In 2015, batteries made up 57% of the EV total cost; today it’s down to 33% and by 2025 the projection is 2025. I know that I have enjoyed my plug-in-hybrid and that my next car will probably be an EV.

Clean Tech Jobs Lead Employment Statistics in Many US States | CleanTechnica – The map is worth the look. Solar panel installer or wind turbine service technician is the fastest growing type of job in 11 states!

Prius Prime – Year 1

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I’ve own my Prius Prime for a year as of today….and enjoyed the serenity of driving in EV mode for most of my errands. I took this picture just after I bought the 3rd tank of gas (it came with a full tank so it’s on is 4th tank at this point).

It has been an easy thing to transition from a gasoline powered car (my 10-year-old Acura TL) to a plug-in hybrid. I view it as a stepping stone toward and purely electric vehicle by the time I buy another new car…and maybe that will be self-driving as well. The plug-in hybrid has worked well for me since I do make road trips occasionally that would have taken more planning – changes to the way I travel – than I was ready to undertake. This car makes it easy since it just uses some gasoline when I am on the road for a longer time.

I like that the car charges overnight (I have it programed to start charging at 11:15 PM); I haven’t needed to upgrade the regular outlet in the garage since I don’t need faster charging. There have been a few times that I’ve come back from an errand knowing I had another later in the day that I’ve had it ‘charge now’ rather than waiting for the overnight….but it hasn’t been a frequent occurrence.

The only bad experience I had with the car was a tire blowing out (on my first road trip!) last summer. The passage of time has dimmed that trauma….and the car has been a wonderful drive for the rest of the time.

I’m still pleased with my decision from a year ago today!

Gleanings of the Week Ending October 7, 2017

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Ancient Roman Mosaic in England Discovered by Amateur Archaeologists – A 4th CE Roman mosaic near the village of Boxford in Berkshire….discovered and then covered up to protect the mosaic until decisions are made about what to do next.

Fall Color In-Depth: Maple Trees Offer New Answers to Diabetes, Alzheimer’s – National Geographic Society  - I like maple syrup and often us it in cooking….it adds more than sweetness and – evidently – is better for you because of those other elements!

Electric Car S-Curve Adoption by Country (Fun Chart!) | CleanTechnica – Norway followed by Iceland and Sweden lead…The US is behind China.

Question: Can People Use Rooftop Solar Power During an Emergency? Answer: It Depends | CleanTechnica – As more battery storage becomes available…the problem of having solar panels but not being able to utilize them if the power grid is down may go away.

Spectacular Shots of Summer Fireworks Festivals in Japan - Hanabi Taikai – Wow! What a huge display.

Infographic: Brain Infection and Alzheimer’s Disease Pathology | The Scientist Magazine® - Evidence of infection (biofilms) in the hippocampus and temporal lobe in brains from people that have died with Alzheimer’s neurodegeneration….several theories about their relationship to Alzheimer’s.

These Breathtaking Natural Wonders No Longer Exist – 18 landscapes that no longer exist…including a beach in Hawaii…some sights in US National Parks.

Free Technology for Teachers: Historical Patterns Animated – A site from the University of Oregon…worth browsing even if you aren’t a teacher.

Interactives from NASA…Exoplanet Exploration – Create your own Earth-like planet….or a hostile world.

LED Lights, All-Electric School Buses, Hydroponic Gardens ... (Cleantech in Action Series) | CleanTechnica – A roundup of cleantech press releases that came out in September.

Gleanings of the Week Ending August 5, 2017

The items below were ‘the cream’ of the articles and websites I found this past week. Click on the light green text to look at the article.

Top 25 Wild Bird Photographs of the Week #98 – This set includes a kestrel!

View and Print in 3D more than 200 Objects from the British Museum – If you can’t go to the museum itself, these 3D renderings are the next best thing. And you can look at them whenever you want!

Here are UNESCO’s Newest World Heritage Sites – There are so many unique places to explore.

How a guy from a Montana trailer park overturned 150 years of biology – The researcher that overcame challenges of early life….and figured out that lichen was made of more than a fungus and an alga.

The dizzy history of carousels begins with knights – A little history. I was surprised that it starts with a training game for Arabian and Turkish warriors in the 12 century!

16 best train trips in the world – I’ve never taken an extended train trip…only short ones for fall foliage in Maryland and Pennsylvania – or scenic areas in Arizona. Maybe a train trips will be my substitute for long road trips.

Paul Hawken on One Hundred Solutions to the Climate Crises – Focusing on solutions rather than the problem…of course.

Look Ma, No Break! You’ll Drive Electric Cars with One Pedal – My Prius Prime still has 2 pedals but long term EVs will be changing to 1 pedal to maximize regen breaking…barely using brake pads

These nature photos inspire serious wanderlust – From National Geographic.

Archaeologists discover a ‘Little Pompeii’ in Eastern France -  From the 1st Century AD…abandoned after catastrophic fires….but the excavation will only last until the end of the year before the construction of a housing complex begins.