Crocs and fish key to human evolution

Jun 01, 2010

(PhysOrg.com) -- A team of scientists now know what may have helped fuel the evolution of the human brain two million years ago. Archeologists working in Kenya unearthed evidence that our human ancestors ate a wide variety of animals including fish, turtles and even crocodiles. Based on analyses of animal bones and stone tools they excavated, the research team found that our early ancestors incorporated aquatic “brain food” in their diet.

“These aquatic foods are really important sources of the long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and docosahexaenoic acid that are so critical to human brain growth,” said co-author and paleoanthropologist Dr. Richmond. “Finding these foods in the diets of our early ancestors suggests they may have helped to lift constraints on brain size and fuel the evolution of a larger brain.”

The discovery of such a diverse animal diet is important because early human brain size increased dramatically after two million years ago. Growing a large brain requires an enormous investment in calories and nutrients and places considerable costs on the mother and developing infant. Anthropologists have long considered meat in the diet as key to the evolution of a larger brain. However, until now, there was no evidence that human ancestors this long ago had incorporated into their diets animal foods, from lakes and rivers, rich in brain nutrients.

A team of scientists from Kenya, the United States, the U.K., Australia and South Africa discovered a 1.95 million year-old site in northwestern Kenya in 2004. Preservation of the excavated site was so remarkable that the team was able to develop a detailed reconstruction of the environment. Over four years, the scientists excavated literally thousands of fossilized bones and stone tools, and were able to determine that at least 10 individual animals, and perhaps many more, were butchered by early humans at this site. Many of these bones showed evidence of cut marks made by early human ancestors as a result of using sharp stone tools to cut meat from the bones or crush long bones to access the fat-rich bone marrow.

“At sites of this age we often consider ourselves lucky if we find any bone associated with stone tools, but here we found everything from small bird bones to hippopotamus leg bones,” said archeologist David Braun of the University of Cape Town in South Africa, who was the lead author on the research.

Gaining access to smaller animals like turtles and fish may have allowed these early humans to increase the protein in their diet without the danger of interacting with dangerous carnivores, such as lions and hyenas. These early humans were relatively small and not well suited to compete with the large carnivores that lived at that time. Stumbling upon brain-fueling food may have been a fortunate side effect of finding foods at lakes and rivers.

The research was funded by the National Science Foundation. The project was directed by Jack Harris of Rutgers University and represents a collaborative effort between National Museums of Kenya and a host of international institutions. Paleontologist Marion Bamford of the University of Witswatersrand in South Africa identified fossilized plant remains that revealed the wet and possibly marshy environment in which these early humans were living. Lead zooarchaeologist Jack McCoy of Rutgers University identified bones of various animals including turtles, fish, crocodiles and large antelopes that ended up as the meals of these early humans. Dr. Richmond of GW took part in fossil identification and analyzing how the findings were important for human evolution.

The site, known to the archaeologists by the moniker FwJj 20, is located in the northern part of the Koobi Fora research area on the eastern side of Lake Turkana in Marsabit District, Kenya. The presence of overlying layers of volcanic ash helped the team pin down the age of the site. Geologists on the team, Naomi Levin of John Hopkins University and Andrew Herries of the University of New South Wales, Australia, were able to use a combination of techniques to estimate the age of the site as close to 1.95 million years. David Braun and his international team will return to northern Kenya to find more answers to questions about the diets of our earliest ancestors.

The article, “Early hominin diet included diverse terrestrial and aquatic animals 1.95 Ma in East Turkana, Kenya,” will appear in the May 31, 2010, issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

Explore further: 550-million-year-old fossils provide new clues about fossil formation

More information: Paper: Braun, D.R., Harris, J.W.K., Levin, N.E., McCoy, J.T., Herries, A.I.R., Bamford, M., Bishop, L., Richmond, B.R., Kibunjia, M., 2010. Early hominin diet included diverse terrestrial and aquatic animals 1.95 Ma ago in East Turkana, Kenya. PNAS.

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akotlar
4 / 5 (3) Jun 01, 2010
This seems like a stretch. Correlation does not equal causation. How did omega lipids account for the genetic variation necessary for smaller jaw muscles and possibly either more slowly closing growth plates or prolonged brain development?
PinkElephant
4.6 / 5 (5) Jun 01, 2010
@akotlar,

At least with respect to smaller jaw muscles, I prefer the explanation that involves invention of food processing. Cooked -- or at least prepared -- foods are much easier to chew, and you need to eat a lot less of them to get sufficient nutrition (hence, less chewing over all) -- eliminating selective pressure for powerful jaws.

As far as lipids, the brain puts a high premium on them. The "white matter" in the brain (all the major communication tracts) is mostly lipids (cell membranes) by volume.

There's also a question of vitamin D. To move out of Africa, you'd need to start wearing animal skins (so as to better survive cooler/harsher climates.) This means reduced sun exposure. A partial response would be lightening of the skin, to maximize D production with less exposed skin surface. But a seafood dietary supplement would certainly help a lot, as well.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (10) Jun 02, 2010
The other version of the story is that after the flood, man got permission to eat animals and fish in addition to the previous vegetarian only diet.

After the flood man had only one language and as a result technology grew in leaps and bounds. But with the tower of Babel diaspora, the mixed languages resulted in many clans having to live in caves after scattering.
Tehnology was lost in it's various forms because of the scattering, resulting in stone-age axes and knives having to be used.

Man has always been the same with no homonids or Neandertals or the like. Man is man, we've all got the same basic DNA with variations built up over the last 6000 or so years since creation. Hence the find in Kenya is simply that of some of the clans from the diaspora.

Just thought I'd put that in for those who thoroughly disagree with the evolutionary viewpoint.

Shoot it down as much as you like.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
Kevinrts,

Please provide references to scientific evidence of the tower of Babel, the "flood" and that all the tests and findings that suggest humans have existed for more than 6000 years is wrong.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (5) Jun 02, 2010
@CSharpner,
Everything revolves around the worldview you assume.

If you assume there is no God then you have to abide by deep time and hence get evolutionary results of "proof" from the scientific tests you perform.

If you assume there is a God and further assume the Judaic viewpoint of six days of creation then you end up with lots of "proof" for the flood.

Fact is that since age is not a property of matter[ e.g. the earth ] one cannot measure it directly. One can only [from man's point, scientifically] measure quantities of radiometric products and calculate ratios. Once that is done, one calls on one's worldview to interpret the results.
One the age of the earth in particular - just how was that determined? Do you know?
As far as I know it was determined using material from a METEORITE in 1956. I might be wrong. This then raises the immediate question: what does a meteorite have to do with earth?
Once you answer that question U can c how the worldview affects things.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (6) Jun 02, 2010
Kevinrts,

If you assume there is no God then you have to abide by deep time and hence get evolutionary results of "proof" from the scientific tests you perform.


Speaking of assumptions, why do you assume I don't believe in God?

Simple question: Where's the proof (or evidence)? Let's start from NO "worldview" assumptions. Let's pretend we know of neither religion nor prior physical theories. Now, let's examine the evidence and see where it leads us. The "scientific" method isn't unique to "science". It's just a rational way of studying ANYTHING, including religious claims.

So, again, I ask (as a fellow Christian): Where is the proof that God created the world in 6 days and that it was done only 10,000 years ago? All of the physical evidence indicates billions of years ago.
newsreader
4 / 5 (2) Jun 02, 2010

I don't see anything in this article about omega lipids. I always thought broader diet implied broader tool set and greater knowledge of the environment. In turn, this need for knowledge place selective pressure on greater learning ability or larger brain size.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
So again, I ask (as a fellow Christian): Where is the proof that God created the world in 6 days and that it was done only 10,000 years ago? All of the physical evidence indicates billions of years ago.


Most YECers consider it 6k, not sure where 10k comes from. Which is based on the timeline of the Flood occuring shortly after the death of Methuselah.

Where as you are right that Kevin shouldnt assume, I find it to be counterproductive to one's religion to not believe it's own god.

Ch 6 of Genesis does not read any different than a history book describing George Washington's crossing of the river to defeat the English. If your going to believe in the Christian God, at least believe what He says...

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
@kevinrtrs,
One the age of the earth in particular - just how was that determined? Do you know?
Assuming you're genuinely interested, and not just posing for effect (which is a big leap of faith on my part), start with this:

http://en.wikiped...he_Earth

And this:

http://en.wikiped...ronology
CSharpner
5 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
Most YECers consider it 6k, not sure where 10k comes from


The book of Luke... or so I'm told by 2 different friends who graduated from seminary school. If you add up the ages of Adam through Abraham and when they had their children, they say it adds up to 10K. Even if it's 6K, doesn't really change my point. :)

BTW, what's "YEcers"? I've never seen that phrase before.

If your going to believe in the Christian God, at least believe what He says

I'm not sure if this was a comment towards creationists in general or towards me (not a creationist). If it was towards me, I'll just say that I was raised a Christian. I don't believe that a book which was collected and assembled by men and who one group of men collected one set of writings and another group of men collected an overlapping, but different set of writings and both called it the word of God... that they could both be right. So, I question them both and don't assume these men were perfect in their decisions.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
...in other words, just because a collection of writings assembled by men says something "religiously", doesn't necessarily mean I believe it without question. (These two collections of writings are the Catholic Bible and the Protestant Bible, BTW... Both groups believe THEIR set is the word of God). I'm on the outside looking in and asking "How do either of you know?, and for that matter, how does ANY religion /know/?".

Wow! Reading back on my posts makes it sound like I'm one of those wacko religious, creationist zealots... I am NOT! I consider myself a scientist and when science and religious beliefs (and I'll go so far to say "superstitions") disagree, I side with logic, which in most (if not even ALL) cases, is science.

In short, I'll stop short of saying there's no God. Many of my highly religious friends (and some family) think I'm an atheist. I'm not. I'm really more agnostic with a built-in-from-birth bias towards Christianity if I had to pick "one" religion.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (3) Jun 02, 2010
The book of Luke... or so I'm told by 2 different friends who graduated from seminary school.


My point is that you havent even studied it yourself. You relied on 2 friends. Where as their intentions may be noble, 10k from Luke is a flawed reconstruction, which is why I said, "Most YECers" (YECs is fine :) ) believe in 6k, esp the their leading scientists.

I'm not sure if this was a comment towards creationists in general or towards me (not a creationist). If it was towards me, I'll just say that I was raised a Christian.


It was to you, you asked a question to Kevin above "as a fellow christian"...so if I mistook your meaning, my apologies.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (4) Jun 02, 2010
If it was towards me, I'll just say that I was raised a Christian.


But you arent one now? So being a fence sitter on the basis that men collected biblical writings, you lean toward scientific writings that are also collected by men? Which logic do you prefer from them?

ese two collections of writings are the Catholic Bible and the Protestant Bible, BTW... Both groups believe THEIR set is the word of God)


Have you studied the difference? The Protestant left out the apokrypha for several reasons. Mainly, most were written during the period of silence, and none were sanctioned by the apostles. All remaining books, either reference another, have apostle approval, or were written by an apostle/prophet. In essence, the protestant merely errs on the side of integrity.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (2) Jun 02, 2010
My point is that you havent even studied it yourself.


Not sure why that would be relevant. I'm not making arguments in favor of religion. I have studied it though (as a kid, as it was being shoved down my throat), but not to the extent they have. I have not touched it in years. Don't need too... don't have any desire too... probably won't for a long time (if ever). I don't go to church either (and I get a lot of flack for it from my family). I accept the possibility of a God, though all my logic tells me it's not likely... it's been programmed in to me so early on, it will never go away. If someone put a gun to my head and said "pick a religion", I'd say "OK OK, fine... Christianity".

I realize a lot of people outside of "religious circles" (so to speak) think there are think there are "religious zealots" and everyone else. Not true. I'm part of "everyone else", but consider myself "a Christian". I also consider myself a "scientist" and reject creationism outright.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (3) Jun 02, 2010
Have you studied the difference? The Protestant left out the apokrypha for several reasons. Mainly, most were written during the period of silence, and none were sanctioned by the apostles. All remaining books, either reference another, have apostle approval, or were written by an apostle/prophet. In essence, the protestant merely errs on the side of integrity.


I'm not sure what you're getting at. My original post was directed to the creationist challenging him to provide evidence counter to the tons and tons of evidence to the contrary. I'm not intending to make any other point. If you perceived one, I apologize for the miscommunication.
croghan27
5 / 5 (1) Jun 02, 2010

I don't see anything in this article about omega lipids. I always thought broader diet implied broader tool set and greater knowledge of the environment. In turn, this need for knowledge place selective pressure on greater learning ability or larger brain size.


Good question, news .... wish someone could deal with it. They are all too busy dealing with freshman theology.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (8) Jun 03, 2010
@CSharpener,
Because of time differences I'm mostly catching you guys in the morning. Hence it seems I'm absent when you reply.
Firstly, going solely by your statements I have to regretfully inform you that you are NOT a follower of Jesus Christ and hence cannot claim to be a Christian. This is not my bone of contention. So i won't pursue it.
As far as the age of the earth is concerned, there is no absolute "proof" anywhere of 6K-10K or for that matter 4.5Ba either.
There are however very strong indicators from a biblical perspective. Firstly I believe the bible when it says God created in 6 days and hence from that all interpretations of scientific observations follows.
Let me name a few indicators from scientific obs:
1. Earth still has a magnetic field. If it were billions of years old, there should be none. I don't subscribe to the dynamo theory because it's an abject failure in terms of the other planets. It doesn't account for the actual measured decline in energy strength.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (8) Jun 03, 2010
@CSharpener,
2. Most carbonaceous fossils, e.g. coal,diamonds etc. still contain C14. If they were Billions of years old, there should have been no measureable C14.
3. There are still comets out there. If the solar system was 4.5Ba old there should have been none. The so-called Oort cloud to date has not been observed or verified in any manner or form whatsoever and hence cannot be used as replenishment. In fact even if it were there it could not supply comets for orbital reasons. You have to take the cloud BY FAITH.
4. The moon is receding from the earth at 3.8 cm per year. This means it would have been touching the earth at only 1.5 Ba ago. A total impossibility.
4.5 Current cosmology cannot account for the existence of the moon except to wave hands and make magic. Hence it is disqualified to speak on past movements of the moon away from earth.
5. Going with uniformatarian assumptions, there is not enough salt in the seas and othe salt lakes to account for billions of years.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (7) Jun 03, 2010
@CSharpener,
Have you actually considered how to measure the age of something yourself?
Next time you see a bird[any bird], ask yourself just how old that bird is. How would you go about establishing it's age since it doesn't come with a birth certificate[no sarcasm intended]? Look at the assumptions you have to make to justify your estimate. The same holds for the age of the earth. Since people do not believe God made the earth, they have to assume certain processes occurred to form it. In doing so, they make the assumption that certain isotopes decayed from scratch at a specified fixed rate and that that rate remained constant over time. Even if one is to find ALL the daughter products in place [which I don't doubt] you are still left with the possibility that the rate didn't stay constant - as improbable as that might be in current scientific thought. As an aside, it is known that decay rates can vary - e.g. if all electrons were stripped off the decay rates can speed up a lot.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
@CSharpener,
The beloved Grand Canyon speaks out against evolutionary assumptions. There are some layers that are 100+ meters deep which show zero erosion. Erosion is what one would expect to find if the canyon had formed over billions of years. What is known now - and acknowledged by secular scientists is that something as big as the G Canyon could easily be formed by a catastrophic event within a few months. Just check on this http://www.physor...112.html to see mention of another canyon formed just so. There are others which you can look up yourself.

Now, if there are any theistic evolutionists reading this, please ask yourselves what is meant by Exodus 20:11 and Exodus 31:17. God's word clearly says 6 days - and in the established context of man having to work for 6 days. They're both the same 6 days - there's no argument around it. If you begin to doubt that, the person who got killed for working on the sabbath must have experienced poetic justice?

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jun 03, 2010
@kevinrtrs,

Wow...

1. You don't subscribe to the dynamo "theory", because Earth doesn't have a liquid iron core, there isn't geological evidence of regular magnetic field reversals going back hundreds of millions of years, other planets rotate just as fast as the Earth (i.e. Venus), and are not too small to have retained a liquid core after 4.5 billion years (Mars). Totally understandable.

2. No, "most carbonaceous fossils" don't contain C14. Indeed C14 dating only works out to about 60,000 years. Most fossils are millions (though not billions) of years old.

3. Why should there be no comets, after 4.5 billion years? Oort cloud (and Kuiper belt) are both deduced from comet orbits. Kuiper belt is actually observed these days. Oort cloud is expected both from computational models of solar system formation, and from observations of other circumstellar disks around young stars.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (4) Jun 03, 2010
@PinkElephant,
Thanks for the links. They simply re-establish what i already know about evolutionary thought.
Here's a quote that is very meaningful
Because the exact accretion time of Earth is not yet known, and the predictions from different accretion models range from a few millions up to about 100 million years, the exact age of Earth is difficult to determine. It is also difficult to determine the exact age of the oldest rocks on Earth, exposed at the surface, as they are aggregates of minerals of possibly different ages.

Note that the exact age is unknown.
Furthermore - the whole accretion model is invalid:
1. The sun is not the right brightness for it's supposed age and the existence of life on earth.
2. Mercury should not have any magnetic field - but it does.
3. There's no accounting for any moons in the solar system.
4. There's not supposed to be any water on earth - but there's Megatons of it.
5. Jupiter,Saturn & Neptune should not exist but they do.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
(continued)

4. The Moon is not receding at a constant velocity. It receded faster in the past. But let's use your numbers linearly, for simplicity. Current closest approach between Earth and Moon: 363,104 km center-to-center. Let's subtract Earth's radius (6,378 km) and moon's radius (1,738 km) from that: 354,988,000 m surface-to-surface. Divide by 0.038 m/year. What do we get? Drum roll... 9.3 billion years.

4.5 The Moon-Earth system is best explained by a glancing collision of proto-Earth with a Mars-sized planetoid. The Moon gets formed from crust ejecta; the Earth gets the super-sized iron core.

5. WTF does salt in seas or lakes have to do with the price of tea in China?

Methinks you ought to actually know the science, if you're going to post on a science news site. Just a suggestion...
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (5) Jun 03, 2010
@PinkElephant,
The liquid core and dynamo theory is simply that: a theory albeit a very good one. It still falls flat on it's face when it comes to the other planets. The reversals of magnetic field does NOT account for weakening total field energy.

Mercury does NOT have a liquid core yet it has a remanent magentic field. One of pluto's moons still has a magnetic field - it should have been cold and dead long time ago. One or two of the moons of pluto are still very much alive and active and spewing out gases/materials when they should have been dead long ago. Just don't have the exact names now. Check it out yourself.
Anyway, like I said right at the beginning: It's a worldview issue. No matter how much "evidence" you throw at me and I throw at you, as long as we both have different starting beliefs, we'll interpret the "evidence" differently. let me throw some evidence at you in the next section:

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (4) Jun 03, 2010
Note that the exact age is unknown.
LOL

They're saying there's an uncertainty of +/- 100 million years, in an age estimate of 4.6 billion years. Yeah, 4.6 billion - 100 million = 6 thousand. Christian Math 101, I suppose...
The sun is not the right brightness...
Huh?
Mercury should not have any magnetic field...
Why?
There's no accounting for any moons in the solar system.
Eh?
There's not supposed to be any water on earth
Why?
Jupiter,Saturn & Neptune should not exist
Why not?
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
@PinkElephant,
Using Hubble and other infrared telescopes, astronomers are making the surprising finding of mature galaxies at 11 billions light years out. Over and over again. These look exactly like those nearby, e.g. our own milky way.
Current theory says they should be different.
So how is one to interpret this observation in the face of one's big bang belief - given that those galaxies should have been younger?
This is where the worldview comes into it: One makes adjusting assumptions to bring the evidence into line with the belief. That's how it works. For both of us. The interpretation depends on the worldview. I hope you can see this and agree that that is so. This is a philosophical issue underlying things which we do not have direct access to. The past is one of those things.

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
mature galaxies at 11 billions light years out
How does that square with a 6,000 year old universe?

FYI, those are outliers. The majority of galaxies at such distances are as primitive as they're expected to be.
This is where the worldview comes into it
No, this is where scientific literacy comes in. You're stuffed to the gills with inaccurate impressions and false facts.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
@PinkElephant,
Huh?
Mercury should not have any magnetic field...
Why?
There's no accounting for any moons in the solar system.
Eh?
There's not supposed to be any water on earth
Why?
Jupiter,Saturn & Neptune should not exist
Why not?

If you have to ask these questions you seem to be displaying a definite lack of knowledge and understanding of your own accretion theory. I would suggest you go read up on the difficult issues surrounding that theory. The items I've mentioned are the main ones - you can certainly find the reasons for my stating them here barefaced without any explanations.
Please do yourself a favour and diminish your own ignorance of the facts - no insult intended.

PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jun 03, 2010
"My" accretion theory? LMAO

Do you seriously think that throwing up all over the site with patently false assertions, somehow strengthens your argument?
kevinrtrs
1.7 / 5 (6) Jun 03, 2010
@PinkElephant,
Time has caught up with me. Would have liked to continue the banter but it's not to be. Maybe again tomorrow.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (5) Jun 03, 2010
The liquid core and dynamo theory is simply that: a theory albeit a very good one.
Kinda like Newton's theory of universal gravitation.
It still falls flat on it's face when it comes to the other planets.
What connection is there between Earth's core and other planets?
The reversals of magnetic field does NOT account for weakening total field energy.
During a reversal, net average global field drops to near 0. Some people think we're heading into another reversal; the time's about right for it.
Mercury does NOT have a liquid core
Says who?
One of pluto's moons still has a magnetic field
Pluto has only one moon of any appreciable size: Charon. And it has no magnetic field that I've heard of.
One or two of the moons of pluto are still very much alive
Are you talking about Jupiter's tidal heating of Io?
Anyway, like I said right at the beginning: It's a worldview issue.
No, it's a scientific literacy issue. You have a long way to go, grasshopper.
Yellowdart
1.5 / 5 (4) Jun 03, 2010
4.5 The Moon-Earth system is best explained by a glancing collision of proto-Earth with a Mars-sized planetoid. The Moon gets formed from crust ejecta; the Earth gets the super-sized iron core.


To be fair though, its a poor explanation. If the glancing blow hits too slight, it only forms multiple smaller moons if anything. If it hits to
violent, you cuase a whole number of additional problems. Further, how does it obtain orbit without a full breakaway or decline?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (4) Jun 03, 2010
@Yellowdart,

Actually for two bodies orbiting the Sun in the same direction and on somewhat similar trajectories (the most plausible scenario for the collision), a glancing collision is the most likely outcome. The approach speed in the collision wouldn't be very large (certainly not as big as the speed at which meteors tend to impact us.)

What happens in an off-center collision like that, is that the outer layers of both planetoids, particularly on the sides that are coming into contact, will be pulverized, melted, vaporized, and thrown up into orbit. The heavier metallic cores will merge and sink to the bottom of the "new" Earth. Pretty much everything is molten at that point, and around this molten blob is orbiting a ring of debris (also largely molten), thrown up by the collision, amounting to just a few % of the combined mass of the two pre-collision planetoids.

Over time some of the debris rains back down, while the rest forms the Moon (1.2% Earth's mass.)
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jun 03, 2010
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (6) Jun 04, 2010
@PinkElephant,

Thanks for pointing out the obvious error: Jupiter turned into Pluto because of a rush to put down thoughts and get going somewhere else.
I see on the web that mercury is now "thought to have a molten core because of the presence of a magnetic field". Nasa has a very conservative statement on that : "The discovery of a magnetic field around Mercury led some scientists to believe that the planet's outer core, like Earth's, consists of liquid iron."
Of course now a problem arises if one holds to the idea that the solar system is billions of years old: That molten core could not have been sustained for 4 billions years because the planet is too small and the size of the magnetic field indicates [according to dynamo theory] that the molten part would have to be very small indeed. So what to do now? Well, in order to make the molten core last that long the believers need a way to sustain it: Sulphur shield or eccentric orbit causing tidal effects - take your pick.
kevinrtrs
1.3 / 5 (6) Jun 04, 2010
@PinkElephant,
This is the point regarding a worldview: Because the researchers in the mercury case are committed to billions of years they now have to invent a way to sustain a molten core over 4 billion years. There is no consideration of an alternate explanation for the molten core - that just that maybe, mercury is YOUNG - about 6000 years, give or take a few.
By the way - using sulphur as an explanation as in this:[Mercury is thought to consist of a silicate mantle surrounding an iron core, but because small planets like Mercury cool off rapidly, the core should have frozen long ago. Maintaining a molten core over billions of years requires that it also contain a lighter element, such as sulfur, to lower the melting temperature of the core material. The presence of sulfur supports the idea that radial mixing, or the combining of elements both close to the sun and farther away, was involved in Mercury's formation process.
BUT:Sulfur was blown away by the solar wind long ago!
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (6) Jun 04, 2010
@PinkElephant,
But Mercury is so small, astronomers had assumed its core had cooled and solidified. Plus, it rotates too slowly to generate a magnetic field the way the Earth does. Or so they thought. Perhaps Mercury's core is still partially liquid, or perhaps the magnetic field is "left over'' from an earlier time when the iron core was molten. Astronomers continue to work on this puzzle.

Mercury's Core
Mercury's extremely large core is made up of iron. For its small size, this planet contains a large amount of iron. No one really knows how this large iron core could have formed. Many scientists think that when Mercury was in its early stages of formation, it crashed into another planet whose core contained a large amount of iron.
.
Strange how everything that cannot be explained needs a violent crash to happen. Then miraculously the evidence of the crash vanishes. I'll compile a list of all these strikes and bring them in.
Have a good day.
kevinrtrs
1 / 5 (4) Jun 04, 2010
@PinkElephant,
Just one last part before I go...
Margot and his team speculate that sulfur or some other light element got mixed with Mercury's iron core when the planet was forming and lowered its melting temperature.

"If you had such a lighter element polluting the iron, it could explain why the core has remained fluid up to the present time," Margot told SPACE.com.

"The surprise," Margot added, "is that you don't expect sulfur to condense out at the distance of Mercury from the Sun."

Radial mixing

That unexpected result fails to jibe with standard planet formation theory. That theory asserts that planets form out of the swirling disks of gas and dust that swaddle newborn stars. Within this "protoplanetary" disk, elements condense and solidify out at different distances from the star depending on their densities.
from here:http://www.space....ore.html
CSharpner
5 / 5 (2) Jun 04, 2010
kivenrts,

Firstly, going solely by your statements I have to regretfully inform you that you are NOT a follower of Jesus Chris


You need to study the Bible a little more. Nothing in there says that you have to accept a 6 day creation theory ~6K-10K years ago. In fact, there's only ONE requirement. Accept that Jesus died on the cross for our sins.

I don't deny that. So, remove your regret (or don't... I don't really care... you're not the one I have to convince).

there is no absolute "proof" anywhere of 6K-10K or for that matter 4.5Ba either


Correct. So, how do I come to a conclusion? Physical evidence.

There are however very strong indicators from a biblical perspective.


Before you can use ANY text like that, you can't just take it at its word (as you can't take any scientific writing at it's word... hence peer review and in the case of experiments, repetitive experiments).
continued...
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (4) Jun 04, 2010
Actually for two bodies orbiting the Sun in the same direction and on somewhat similar trajectories (the most plausible scenario for the collision)


Where is the other body then? Where's the leftovers? This theory requires the perfect scenario of speed, angle, impact, etc. It's the "best" but only cause the other 3 ideas were awful. The Mars size object needed, was based off of 60s equations that do a very poor job of modeling particle ejecta on top of that.

It's a similiar problem for recession. Hansen had to use very specific unlikely locations for the continents in his modeling in order to maximize the amount of time up to 4.2billion years.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (3) Jun 04, 2010
http://www.npr.or...92383117

Water, from within the moon, would also be a sizable blow considering you mentioned that the particles would have been "molten" upon collision.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jun 04, 2010
@kevinrtrs,

If you really want to be objectively minded, you might also want to inquire into the origins of your taken-on-faith creation myth:

http://en.wikiped..._context

Anyway, when it comes to Mercury, that it has a large iron core is not in question. Mercury is extremely dense for its size.

Now, as it happens the heaviest elements (including the heavy radioactive elements) in the proto-solar disk, would've gravitated toward the Sun early in its formation. It is reasonable to assume that Mercury is more enriched in them than any other planet. Hence, I wouldn't discount the possibility that despite its small size, Mercury's core is kept at least partially liquid by internal heat generated by continuing radioactive decay. Of course, it doesn't hurt to point out that Mercury is very close to the sun, so its surface is (on average) just as warm as the Earth's -- so no more effective at shedding heat.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (4) Jun 04, 2010
You need to study the Bible a little more.


Says the guy who hasnt since he was a kid :)

Accept that Jesus died on the cross for our sins.

I don't deny that.


Well, when you say your an agnostic, it kinda means you dont believe he did...unless at gunpoint it seems...

You might have an easier time making up your mind, if you actually studied it and the opposing views. Do you normally "study" any subject with such a "hands off" approach?
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jun 04, 2010
@Yellowdart,

That sort of thing (regarding water content in the Moon) puzzles me. But not because it runs counter to prior assumptions. Rather, I don't understand why people are so blaze about water being present on Earth, yet so shocked that water should be present on the Moon. Remember, both started out as molten blobs. So if Earth managed to either retain (bound up in minerals) or acquire (presumably from subsequent bombardment by comets) its share of water , then why shouldn't the Moon have just the same?

Regarding "60s equations", things have progressed a bit since then:

http://en.wikiped...pothesis
CSharpner
5 / 5 (3) Jun 04, 2010
...continued. Why THAT religious text as opposed to others? (I've asked myself these same questions).

Earth still has a magnetic field. If it were billions of years old, there should be none


From:

http://en.wikiped...o_theory

Slight variations in the core-surface temperature, in the range of a few millikelvins, result in significant increases in convective flow and produce more realistic magnetic fields.


Pink_Elephant has responded to most (if not all) of your other concerns.

Re: How does the 6K year old universe belief account for light from billions of light years away have already reached Earth?
CSharpner
5 / 5 (5) Jun 04, 2010
Yellowdart,

Well, when you say your an agnostic, it kinda means you dont believe he did...unless at gunpoint it seems...

No, it means I don't know (and neither do you). I wasn't there and there's not enough evidence one way or the other. This is where the word "Faith" comes in. Hello?

You might have an easier time making up your mind, if you actually studied it and the opposing views. Do you normally "study" any subject with such a "hands off" approach?

LMAO. I went to a Baptist nursery school, a Lutheran Grammar School, went to Chapel every Wednesday at school, went to a Catholic high school, went to mass once a month, all the time attending a Methodist church, visiting Episcopalian & Nazarene churches. Read the entire Bible I don't know how many times, had an hour of religion class from 1st through 12th grade, plus Sunday School, plus plenty of philosophical discussions with my seminary friends and family... on top of that, grew up in the
continue...
CSharpner
5 / 5 (6) Jun 04, 2010
...continue.
On top of all that, grew up in the Buckle of the Bible Belt in Tennessee. Trust me. I've studied all forms of Christianity inside and out.

I've also studied Science.

When I was around 13 years old I was thinking to myself, "how horrible it is that all these kids in other countries don't know that MY religion is the right one. What makes them think THEIRS is right? Oh, it must be because their parents and their community drives it into their head and they just don't know any better... how sad". Then, I'd think of how I'd debate it with them, if the opportunity ever arose and tried to think of arguments they'd come at me with, so I'd be prepared and I realized, they'd say EXACTLY the same thing about ME. Then I thought, "How can I prove to them that MY religion is right?" and you know what? I /couldn't/ come up with ANYTHING objective that proved the one I happened to be raised in was right and theirs wasn't.

That's when my eyes were opened.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (4) Jun 04, 2010
@CSharpner,
That's when my eyes were opened.
I have to say I admire that.

Personally, I grew up without religion to begin with, so I was always by default in that state of mind ever since I can remember (i.e. marveling at all the disparate religions out there, both extant and extinct, and wondering how /any/ of them can proclaim with a straight face that it's THE right one. And that's even before considering how painfully anthropomorphic, anthropocentric, and clearly anthropogenic all these deities and myths are.)

But for someone like you, who had been steeped -- nay, drowned -- in religion from day 1, to break the chains and mental blocks like that, and at a tender age of 13, no less...

R.e.s.p.e.c.t.
trekgeek1
5 / 5 (3) Jun 04, 2010
I think I'm getting a crush on PinkElephant. Great job refuting the nonsense. You have dazzled me.
CSharpner
5 / 5 (2) Jun 04, 2010
But for someone like you, who had been steeped -- nay, drowned -- in religion from day 1, to break the chains and mental blocks like that, and at a tender age of 13, no less...

R.e.s.p.e.c.t.


:)
dnleary
1 / 5 (1) Jun 06, 2010
Can you bunch of teenagers take your discussion elsewhere and leave this comment section for people with something useful to say on the actual article. Christ!
CSharpner
5 / 5 (1) Jun 06, 2010
Can you bunch of teenagers take your discussion elsewhere and leave this comment section for people with something useful to say on the actual article. Christ!

Funny, I thought this thread was closed.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
Rather, I don't understand why people are so blaze about water being present on Earth, yet so shocked that water should be present on the Moon. Remember, both started out as molten blobs. So if Earth managed to either retain (bound up in minerals) or acquire (presumably from subsequent bombardment by comets) its share of water , then why shouldn't the Moon have just the same?


Who is shocked? I'm not.
The water found, is not the result of comets...at least that much is understandable. What specifically are you referencing in the wiki article? The article mentions the same difficulties I've presented. In fact, had you read from some of the listed footnotes you could have read "Moonwalk" which was published in 2009. I would recommend reading it.
EDIT: Tried to link it, but youll have to go from the wiki page.
PinkElephant
5 / 5 (2) Jun 08, 2010
The water found, is not the result of comets...at least that much is understandable.
What made you reach such an understanding?
In fact, had you read from some of the listed footnotes you could have read "Moonwalk"
Ok, I just read it. It says the isotopic similarities between Earth and Moon are too great for two bodies that ostensibly came from different parts of the solar system. However, the Moon need not have come from a different part of the solar system.

Indeed, the animated illustrations on the wikipedia page show a rather different concept (involving the hypothesized Theia): the proto-moon forming in essentially the same orbit as the proto-Earth, at one of the proto-Earth's Lagrangian points. Sharing the same orbit, the two proto-planets would've been both accreting very similar material, resulting in very similar isotopic content -- which would've been homogenized even further in the process of the Giant Impact.
Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (1) Jun 09, 2010
Just a few things for you YEC because Pink and CS have done well enough here.

Water, by all models should be one of the most common molecules in the universe as it is composed to two of the most common and available elements, hydrogen and oxygen.

YEC hypotheses have all be soundly and thoroughly refuted using every measure imaginable. Unless you have new evidence, which you don't, YEC is wrong.

The funniest thing about YEC believers like yellow and kevin is the fact that it's black and white for them. "If science gets it wrong, it's automatically proof for my idea" is also wrong.

You gents don't have the ability to rationally think for yourselves. I'd blame your parents, and your relative isolation from the world. Now if you don't know something, we're all more than happy to explain it, as we have above, however, if you're willfully ignorant, and bring up the same arguments over and over and over trying to ignore contradictory evidence, then we're going to mock you.
Yellowdart
not rated yet Jun 10, 2010
What made you reach such an understanding?


The article, namely. It describes where it came from (the water), and further, actual proponents of bombardment recognitions of that difficulty.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (2) Jun 10, 2010
However, the Moon need not have come from a different part of the solar system.


Your not arguing anything different than what Pahlevan and Stevenson did. Thats part of the point. You still cant over come the problems with the amount of mass needed vs. angular momentum in order to homogenize the sytem, according to Melosh.

In essence its a sucky theory, with sucky evidence if anything at this point. Does that make it a smoking gun of proof for a YEC, nope.
In fact, the Bible says it was day 4 when the moon was established. So it is quite plausible, that it is still the result of a physical interaction of some type.

Skeptic_Heretic
4 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2010
In fact, the Bible says it was day 4 when the moon was established.
So who observed and recorded these dates and times in the Bible?

Right...

Not a reputable source, just as the story of Santa Claus isn't proof of flying reindeer. Seriously, just stop.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2010
Water, by all models should be one of the most common molecules in the universe as it is composed to two of the most common and available elements, hydrogen and oxygen.


Um, 80% plus percent of the world believe in some from of God...what does abundance have to do with any point?

The funniest thing about YEC believers like yellow..


Where did I state I was YEC? I've only stated what most of them currently believe.

however, if you're willfully ignorant, and bring up the same arguments over and over and over trying to ignore contradictory evidence, then we're going to mock you.


Who is ignoring contradictory evidence? Sound slike Molesh wasnt, and his response was fairly recent. Aside from your strawmen, do you actually have anything new to support GIT?
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2010
So who observed and recorded these dates and times in the Bible?

Right...

Not a reputable source, just as the story of Santa Claus isn't proof of flying reindeer. Seriously, just stop.


And you still miss the point. Despite your deflection, I'll be glad to simplify it, so you can understand. I basically just agreed that Moon Origin, regardless of what it is, has a physical mechanism. In essence, even by the Bible's account, was not created ex nihlo. Therefore, it is not a smoking gun for YEC.

The statement was not over the authenticity, accuracy, or proof of the bible. It is irrelative to the point.

Learn from the fine discourse of discussion that Pink and CSharp have been so kind to give, and maybe youll learn not to be as irrational as most YECs
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (1) Jun 10, 2010
CSharp,

I do want to apologize. The unspecific term of "kid" certainly had me thinking of a child, one who barely understands science, much less anything else at 13. I'm not sure if your background story meant that your thoughts on the subject continued past 13 or if all at the age of 13, you came to such a conclusion.

Either way, after a time, why would you still pick christianity if at gunpoint? Why not agnosticism if this is what you really believe? At gun point is certainly a phrase, but it is one subjected to the idea of a life or death matter.

Sounds like you believe it, you just dont want to accept it. In the least, you are uncommitted to agnosticism and I find that counter productive in either case.

I've appreciated your responses. If youd like to continue at all, feel free to PM me.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jun 10, 2010
Um, 80% plus percent of the world believe in some from of God...what does abundance have to do with any point?
Not accurate. It's about 50% but thanks for you other fine commentary.

We don't have a hypothesis that the moon is a result of two planetary bodies colliding, we have a theory. As so far this theory fits all the known evidence and there are no refuting observations. There are competing theories however they are all more flawed (not as descriptive) as the collision theory. I go off evidence, not supposition based on subjective belief of an intangible engineer.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (1) Jun 11, 2010
As so far this theory fits all the known evidence and there are no refuting observations.


Willful ignorance? Molesh is an accomplished professor from UA whose expertise is in impact cratering and planetary tectonics...He's done the calcs. Unless you can show where he was wrong, his evidence stands.

Not accurate. It's about 50% but thanks for you other fine commentary


I said "some form of". Over 50% alone in christianity and islam. Considering that 15% are nonreligious, 80% is a solid conservative estimate of those that believe in some form of god.
croghan27
5 / 5 (1) Jun 12, 2010

I said "some form of". Over 50% alone in christianity and islam. Considering that 15% are nonreligious, 80% is a solid conservative estimate of those that believe in some form of god.


Does the difference make a difference - I can perceive no real difference between the actions of materialists and those of 'believers' - maybe a change in justification of the same acts, but 'true believers' as every bit as blood thirsty, nasty, argumentative as are (maybe more) non-believers. (and, in truth, they are involved in good works as well - humanity is not all negative.)

If there is any basis to this God stuff ... God is making no difference in behaviour. Occam's razor works well here ... why bother if it is not going to make a change.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jun 12, 2010
The figure for people in the world who believe in a personal god is estimated to be 61%. Christianity being 33% of that and Islam being about 20% more. Hinduism clocking in about 9% and many other religions making up the last 1%.

There are a great many religions that have NO god, ie: Jainism, Buddhism, Spiritism, etc. Your figures are entirely in error.

As for Melosh, link his work. The only Melosh I'm aware of is John Melosh, the Moon Landing Hoax Proponent.
Yellowdart
not rated yet Jun 25, 2010
The figure for people in the world who believe in a personal god is estimated to be 61%.


I thought you said it was 50%? Can you make up your mind?

According to Cambridge University in 2005, 88% of the world said they believed in a god. In the USA, 95%.

Buddhists for instance vary on their belief if there is one or not. Some do, some dont. The subject wasnt which religions have gods. The subject was that when asked, 80% or more, do believe there is one, whether certain or not, used as an example that abundance, isnt proof

As for Melosh, link his work. The only Melosh I'm aware of is John Melosh, the Moon Landing Hoax
Proponent.


Well he must not exist then if your not aware of him...Dr. H. Jay Melosh. http://www.purdue...losh.php

He now works at Purdue.

The comments he made that I am referencing come from Reference #4, which I already pointed to in previous posts.
http://en.wikiped...pothesis
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jun 25, 2010
I thought you said it was 50%? Can you make up your mind?
Depends on whether you consider Buddhism a religion. I don't, making the figure 61%.

According to Cambridge University in 2005, 88% of the world said they believed in a god. In the USA, 95%.
Most Americans are stupid, what can I say.

Buddhists for instance vary on their belief if there is one or not. Some do, some dont.
No Buddhists believe in a god. Or should I say, Buddhists with no other religious involvement do not believe in a god. Again Buddhism is not a religion.
The subject wasnt which religions have gods.
No one asserted that, strawman argument.

Well he must not exist then if your not aware of him...Dr. H. Jay Melosh.
You mean the gentleman who has all but proved that the Moon resulted from a giant impact event?

You've deballed your own argument.
croghan27
not rated yet Jun 25, 2010
Yo SH .. "Most Americans are stupid, what can I say." that's a bit of a dismissal of 150 million people ....

As for yellodork - what is a personal god? I never heard of one before the current batch of JAY-SUS lovers appeared on the scene. The catholic God I was raised to believe in (and not very well) was omniscient, omnipotent and OMNIAMROUS - noting "the fall of the sparrow" and loving all creation.
Skeptic_Heretic
not rated yet Jun 26, 2010
Yo SH .. "Most Americans are stupid, what can I say." that's a bit of a dismissal of 150 million people ....
When looking at the enlightened minds of the US who would rather teach creationism in school science courses what is your verdict?
How about when their brilliant people do excellent things like go pump millions of gallons of oil into their richest fishery? How about when we go forth and proclaim a Christian holy war with a bunch of incestuous book burners in the desert?

The US is certainly the most technologically advanced but we've proved that technological advancement comes from the few, not the many. I certainly am dismissive of those 150 million.

If the shoe was on the other foot, those 150 million would dismiss you and I as "stupid evolutionists creating a false religion to corrupt the soul of mankind.

Then they'd want us to come up with a cure for their diseases. I'm not an elitist, I'm against delusions. There's nothing more delusional than following god.
croghan27
not rated yet Jun 26, 2010
SH - I would attribute the evul in America more to Bush, Obama, Karl Rove and Dick Cheney than to the great masses of the lied to, mislead and foisted upon population. Were the US a democracy then some blame would be appropriate.

As for fundamental Christian beliefs .... see Terry Eagleton, Lunging Flailing and Mispunching in the London Review of Books.

http://www.lrb.co...punching

A response to Richard Dawkings and his God Delusion.

Benny Hinn & Co. are not representative of anything but them selves.
Yellowdart
1 / 5 (1) Jul 08, 2010
No Buddhists believe in a god. Or should I say, Buddhists with no other religious involvement do not believe in a god. Again Buddhism is not a religion.


Did I not just say that one's religion is irrelative to whether one believes in a god or not?
One may be a buddhist and still believe in a god. Since buddhism as you believe is not a religion, they can be both buddhist and a believer in some form of god. Your arguement against the higher figure seems to be the actual strawman.

You mean the gentleman who has all but proved that the Moon resulted from a giant impact event?

You've deballed your own argument.


Seems he's not in favor of it these days according to the article. GIT doesnt work. How does that deball my arguement?
Yellowdart
not rated yet Jul 08, 2010
what is a personal god?


I believe i said "some form of...".

But if your simply asking what I think one is, it seems to be a personal God would be where an individual interaction between man and God.



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