1/21/2005:

Intermediate Word:  agoraphobia -  (a) fear of heights  (b) fear of pain  (c) tear of crowds  (d) fear of entrapment
Difficult Word: - herdic  (a) horse-drawn cab  (b) herd of wild horses  (c) garden hoe  (d) cattle drover 
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Queen's Discovery Sheds New Light On Ancient Temperatures - SpaceDaily  Left: The researchers discovered ikaite (pictured) at several different levels in what were believed to be rock formations deposited in shallow, warm oceans during the interval between two ice ages that extended all the way to the equator 700 hundred million years ago. But ikaite forms in shallow water on the sea bottom at cold temperatures and melts when brought to the surface. The fundamental question for scientists is what triggered the enormous ice ages that left the oceans cold enough for the formation of this mineral?  One controversial theory known as "The Snowball Earth" hypothesis suggests that around 700 million years ago the earth was almost totally enclosed in ice. The Queen's discovery offers alternatives to this hypothesis. Was there a major celestial change that allowed the oceans to become so much colder during this period, or was there a change in the composition of the atmosphere that no longer allowed solar radiation to heat the surface of the earth?    
Repenomamus robustus fed on psittacosaurs. Image: Xu Xiaping Fierce mammal ate dinos for lunch  - BBC  Left:  These early mammals were thought to have lived in the shadow of the dinosaurs. But the picture is much different now.  The specimen belongs to a primitive mammal about 130 million years old and its stomach contents show that it ate young dinosaurs called psittacosaurs. In the same issue, the group reports also discovering the largest known primitive mammal from the same locality. But fragmentary evidence from Liaoning suggests even bigger mammals may prowled the region during the Cretaceous. Most mammal fossils from the time of the dinosaurs are about the size of mice and rats.  

Our Cosmic Self-Esteem - SpaceDaily  "We should think of ourselves as still in the early stage of the emergence of complexity and intelligence. It's hard to conceive what forms that might take on Earth or far beyond Earth. But I think we should see ourselves as nowhere near the culmination of evolution. Even if life is now very rare in the galaxy or unique to Earth, that doesn't mean life is forever going to be a trivial afterthought in the cosmos. In the time lying ahead, life from Earth could spread all through the galaxy. The Earth could be cosmically important as the seed from which life spreads more widely. It's  possible that life is very rare and almost unique to the Earth. 




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