Agnostic views & images I like

Thoughts about things on the web

Posts Tagged ‘Earth

What the Universe looks like as composed by the Planck Satellite

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I like to post unique and not_seen_before images here. And this is one of those I believe. I snipped it from  bbc.co.uk’s science section:

You will notice the major astronomic features we homo sapiens know about marked up on the image. I kinda think that this is a WOW image. Can you believe a picture of the Universe? The Planck Sat is a product of Euro science as distinct from NASA.

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2010/07/06 at 05:18

After the previous post you would think that I would enjoy Peter Singer’s dire analysis

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Peter Singer speaking at a Veritas Forum event...
Image via Wikipedia

of the value of a new sentient being in this topsy-turvey world of ours. Here’s the link!

Singer asks at the end of his essay: What do you think?

Readers are invited to respond to the following questions in the comment section below:

If a child is likely to have a life full of pain and suffering is that a reason against bringing the child into existence?

To begin with, it seems to me impossible for any parent, unless they are confirmed pessimists, or optimists, to have a clear idea of the life their new child can have. It’s a throw of dice at best!

If a child is likely to have a happy, healthy life, is that a reason for bringing the child into existence?

I’m tempted to say that this is enough of a reason to give birth to a new sentient being. My wife hopes for a blue eyed baby boy to occupy her time fully. What to make of that wish, or reason to have a child?

Is life worth living, for most people in developed nations today?

Once again I am loath to say NO such a life is not worth living. For me there are really only moments of sheer joy which I celebrate with all the abandon of a 74+year old. It’s great when it’s happening and it makes a lot of shit go away!

Is a world with people in it better than a world with no sentient beings at all?

A world without sentient beings is not in any conventional sense a world. We are part and parcel of this world, sentient or not!

Would it be wrong for us all to agree not to have children, so that we would be the last generation on Earth?

Only another sentient being like Peter Singer could propose such an eventuality. Agreeing to become the last generation on Earth is a devil’s bargain! And I don’t believe in God or the devil, whatever that is!

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2010/06/07 at 02:04

What Earth’s journey through space means to us, homo sapiens!

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Comparison of the current-day Sun and the Sun ...
Image via Wikipedia

Olivia Judson often offers thoughts that are based on science and common sense. Here’s one from her science essay in today’s NY Times:

A pedant has pointed out that our journey ’round the sun is only seemingly endless, and that we’ve only got another four or five billion years to go before the sun turns into a red giant and engulfs us. He’s right; but a few billion years is so long that it feels endless to me.

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2009/12/30 at 10:37

The Tree of Life

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LONDON - MARCH 13:  Sir David Attenborough pos...
Image by Getty Images via Daylife

David Attenborough does his narrating thing here telling the story of how the Tree of Life evolved on Earth. Yes, it’s a story that has a fair amount of plausability. It offers a reasoned explanation of how we humans along with all other animals species on land, in the air and under water must of come about Here’s the link to the YouTube video!

I found it this morning at this Science blog!

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2009/09/07 at 07:08

Thx to Sean Carroll, the cosmoligist one and impresario of Cosmic Variance

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solar_system
Image by Royalty-free image collection via Flickr

A really great and highly instructional site if you want to know more about the universe, the solar system and Earth. Click here!

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2009/09/04 at 05:41

A neat view of Earth nearly 100km in space during Apollo 11 flight in July 1969

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Neil Armstrong works at the LM in one of the f...
Image via Wikipedia

I clearly recall being in our apartment in Quebec City when Neil Armstrong began the moonwalks.

About a month later I was in Algeria, part of a team of consultants preparing to work with Sonatrach, the state oil company.

A second more dreamy image of earth from the Apollo 11 flight to the moon:

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2009/07/15 at 12:24

An ominous sounding headline for me

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Daintree Rainforest. Photo taken June 2005. Up...

Image via Wikipedia

Here in Vancouver BC, we’ve been having what I consider a nice fall, sunny days, not too much frost yet, and few wind storms. So I have been spending more time biking in leafy environs and enjoying the trees. Now this headline:

Asian Beetle Spells Death for Maples So Dear

Of course we have our own fir tree beetle infestation that is turning our rain forest into a pine needle wasteland. So the idea that beautiful maples are being chopped down because of another beetle leaves me with the dreadful idea that “our trees seem to be disappearing”. Not a nice thought for me! I wonder where I can find information about the bigger picture of the health of our large forests on Earth.

I am silly enough about trees that the other day I thought I was hearing a renaissance of birds in a small forested park in South East Vancouver. The sound seemed so nice. It’s not as if I could see and hear the numbers of birds like we used to have 50 years ago, but I felt that there were more of them than last year, for instance.

Trees and birds are one of the reasons I moved from Ontario to BC 9 years ago. So this is not a trivial situation for me!

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Written by BobG in Dalian & Vancouver

2008/11/28 at 04:33