Monday, August 21, 2017

Today's Eclipse and Eclipse Art

I aspire to the Buddhist notion that we fill our days with distractions from the reality. However, reality itself is elusive, so the deeper we dig, the less we seem to know.

Einstein and other physicists speak of the mathematical beauty which underlies the universe. What is beautiful about the math, they say, is the simplicity. This total solar eclipse is a reminder of that very concept. We have a day in which to observe that the moon appears to be the same size as the sun. This illusion is because the sun is 400 times wider than the moon and the sun is also 400 times farther away from us as the moon.

How beautiful and how simple is that?

If you are lucky enough to see the eclipse in totality today, you will be living "in the moment" for just a while. In today's busy world, perhaps it takes a total eclipse in order for us to do that. I shudder to think how many people will have their cell phones out taking videos of it to post to Facebook instead of just enjoying it.

Here in Boulder I plan to be on a higher-up hike when we have 93% sun cover. In October 2014, we had a 45% partial eclipse and I happened to be on a hike at the time so perhaps I can position myself in about the same place for this one. While I wish I could see a night sky in the daytime, I'll save the emissions required to get there. It is a noble ambition to experience this year's totality so my hat's off to those who do, but the sorry cynic in me says people don't care about seeing the night sky given today's amount of light pollution, why would they drive to see it in the daytime.

We'd best turn to the artists for further interpretation, awe, and wonder.

Eclipsed Time ~ Maya Lin

Blue Eclipse ~ Albert Bloch ~ 1955

Square Motif, Blue and Gold: The Eclipse ~ Victor Pasmore ~ 1950

The Eclipse ~ Carlos Orozco Romero ~ 1952

Eclipse ~ Nicholas Roerich ~ 1939

After the Eclipse (11 August 99) ~ Zao Wou-Ki ~ 1999

Eclipse ~ William Baziotes ~ 1950

Eclipse chromatique No. 1 ~ Martha Boto ~ 1973

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Global Food and Agriculture Photos August 20, 2017

This roundup of global food, farming, and agricultural photos appears every Sunday on Big Picture Agriculture.

U.S.A.
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Deere & Co. John Deere tractors sit on display for sale at the Smith Implements Inc. dealership in Greensburg, Indiana, U.S., on Wednesday, Aug. 16, 2017. Deere & Co. is scheduled to release earnings figures on August 18. Photo credit: Luke Sharrett / Bloomberg/ Getty Images.

E.U.
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Women stand behind vegetables stalls on a market organized by the MODEF agricultural union (Defense Movement for Family Producers) to denounce abusive margins taken by the retail industry, on the place de la Bastille in Paris on August 17, 2017. Photo credit: AFP / Bertrand GUAY / Getty Images.
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People demonstrate as reapers from the French Ariege department arrive for their trial at the Correctional Court of Foix, southern France, on August 17, 2017. 21 reapers are charged for having rendered pesticide cans containing glyphosate unsuitable for sale in several do-it-yourself stores in the region in September 2016. Photo credit: AFP / REMY GABALDA / Getty Images.
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A picture taken on August 18, 2017 shows eggs on waffles in Lille, northern France, as packaged waffles were withdrawn from sale in France in connection with European egg contamination scandal. The tainted-eggs scandal that swept Europe this month saw millions of eggs destroyed and caused tens of millions of euros in damages. Photo credit: AFP / PHILIPPE HUGUEN / Getty Images.
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A customer shops for fruit and vegetable produce at an indoor market in Rome, Italy, on Thursday, Aug. 17, 2017. Italy's economic recovery extended for a tenth straight quarter, boosting optimism that growth can become sustainable this year amid a rise in industrial production. Photo credit: Alessia Pierdomenico / Bloomberg / Getty Images.
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A field with industrial hemp growing in France on 15 August 2017. The cultivation of Hemp has been for the last decade the only culture with no OGM and no chemicals process, that offers the most variety of spin-off products. Photo credit: NurPhoto / Getty Images.
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Combine harvesters, manufactured by Claas KGaA, operate in a wheat field in Wustermark, Germany, on Monday, Aug. 14, 2017. In Germany, problems with specific weight and Hagberg, a measure of baking quality, mean as much as 40 percent of wheat may have to go to the animal feed market this year. Photo credit: Krisztian Bocsi / Bloomberg / Getty Images.
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A Case New Holland Italia SpA CR9.90 combine harvester operates in a wheat field during harvest at a farm near Cambridge, U.K., on Monday, Aug. 14, 2017. Premiums for bread milling wheat jumped 74 percent last week to the years high, AHDB figures compiled by Bloomberg show. Photo credit: Jason Alden / Bloomberg / Getty Images.

VIETNAM
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A vegetable vendor sits among her baskets of goods at a market in downtown Hanoi on August 16, 2017. Photo credit: AFP / HOANG DINH Nam / Getty Images.

TAJIKISTAN
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Drying apples in the village of Safedsang, Mu'minobod District. Photo credit: Nozim Kalandarov / TASS / Getty Images.
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Harvesting honey in the village of Safedsang, Mu'minobod District. Photo credit: Nozim Kalandarov / TASS / Getty Images.
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A young woman feeds apples to a calf in the village of Safedsang, Mu'minobod District. Photo credit: Nozim Kalandarov / TASS / Getty Images.
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Residents have lunch in the village of Safedsang, Mu'minobod District. Photo credit: Nozim Kalandarov / TASS / Getty Images.

BHUBANESWAR
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Village women daily wage laborers look at the agricultural paddy field as they are busy in the paddy saplings replanting works outskirts of the eastern Indian state Odisha's capital city Bhubaneswar on 19 August 2017. Photo credit: NurPhoto / Getty Images.

INDIA
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An Indian farmer stacks stalks of freshly harvest jute at Krishnanagar in Nadia District some 130kms east of Kolkata on August 18, 2017. Jute is one of the most important natural fibers after cotton in terms of cultivation and usage. Cultivation is dependent on the climate, season, and soil. Almost 85% of the world's jute cultivation is concentrated in the Ganges Delta, the fertile geographic region which is shared by both Bangladesh and India. Photo credit: AFP / DIBYANGSHU SARKAR / Getty Images.
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Indian farmers harvest jute fibres at Krishnanagar in Nadia District some 130kms east of Kolkata on August 18, 2017. Jute is one of the most important natural fibers after cotton in terms of cultivation and usage. Cultivation is dependent on the climate, season, and soil. Almost 85% of the world's jute cultivation is concentrated in the Ganges Delta, the fertile geographic region which is shared by both Bangladesh and India. Photo credit: AFP / DIBYANGSHU SARKAR / Getty Images.

PALESTINE
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A Palestinian man sprays vines a month before harvesting the grapes in the village of Halhul, north of the West Bank city of Hebron, on August 17, 2017. Photo credit: AFP / HAZEM BADER / Getty Images.
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A Palestinian man checks his vines a month before harvesting the grapes in the village of Halhul, north of the West Bank city of Hebron, on August 17, 2017. Photo credit: AFP / HAZEM BADER / Getty Images.

TURKEY
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Sacrificial animals wait for the customers at a livestock market ahead of the upcoming Muslim sacrificial festival 'Eid al-Adha in Sanliurfa, Turkey on August 18, 2017. Photo credit: Anadolu Agency / Getty Images.

CHINA
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A pig jumps into a pond in Shenyang in China's northeastern Liaoning province on August 17, 2017. The Chinese pig farmer trains his pigs to dive from a 3-meter platform to get a higher quality of pork. Photo credit: AFP / STR / China OUT / Getty Images.
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Pigs jump into a pond in Shenyang in China's northeastern Liaoning province on August 17, 2017. The Chinese pig farmer trains his pigs to dive from a 3-meter platform to get a higher quality of pork. Photo credit: AFP / STR / China OUT / Getty Images.
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This photo taken on August 14, 2017 shows farmers spraying herbicide in a Chinese chive field in Liaocheng in China's Eastern Shandong province. Photo credit: AFP / STR / China OUT / Getty Images.
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This photo taken on August 12, 2017 shows a competitor eating chili peppers while taking a 'chili bath' during a chili pepper eating competition in Ningxiang in central China's Hunan province. The winner of the contest, held in the scenic region to attract tourists to Hunan province which is famous for spicy food, was the person who could eat 15 chili peppers in one minute. Photo credit: AFP / STR / China OUT / Getty Images.
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A 72 year old man harvested a 207cm length loofah in Taiyuan, Shanxi on 16th August, 2017. Photo credit: TPG / Getty Images.

HONG KONG
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A vendor (C) puts out durian fruit for sale at the food expo in Hong Kong on August 19, 2017. This years food expo, held at the Hong Kong Exhibition and Convention Centre, runs from August 17-21. Photo credit: AFP / ISAAC LAWRENCE / Getty Images.
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This picture taken on August 17, 2017 shows a customer walking past different brands of instant noodles for sale in a supermarket in Hong Kong. From decades-old holes in the wall to multi-million dollar businesses, Hong Kong's noodle scene is a sprawling moneyspinner in a city that runs on quick and affordable comfort food. Photo credit: AFP / ISAAC LAWRENCE / Getty Images.

TURKMENISTAN
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Turkmen President Gurbanguly Berdymukhamedov (2nd L), surrounded by officials and participants of the upcoming 2017 Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games, inspects melons on display during Melon Day celebrations in Ashgabat on August 18, 2017. Photo credit: AFP / IGOR SASIN / Getty Images.

FINALLY, FROM MY TOWN of BOULDER, COLORADO (There is a bike path alongside where this fella is sitting that I take on occasion - and it's downhill all the way home!)
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A traveler Richard Kroyer and his Heeler, Dillion resting along Boulder Creek in Boulder Canyon while visiting family in the area. August 15, 2017 Boulder, Colorado. Photo credit: Denver Post / Joe Amon / Getty Images.