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BITS ‘N’ PIECES

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By US Desk
Fri, 01, 20

The oceans and atmosphere are inextricably linked. Changing ocean heat means changing rains, and that means more floods in some places and more droughts and wildfires in others.....

Africa - from poverty to beauty

Over the past two years, Ivorian artist O’Plerou Denis Grebet has designed more than 350 free emojis that celebrate the beauty of African culture in all its forms.

His first emoji was of Foutou, a staple Ivorian meal made from ground cassava flour and mashed plantains.

The Abidjan-based student draws inspiration for his designs from history and contemporary African life.

In 2018, after a lot of practice with photoshop, Grebet decided to create and post a new Africa related emoji every day till the end of the year on Instagram.

But Grebet wanted more than just to create emojis representing Africans.

He wanted people to be able to reference them in their conversations as they do with regular emojis on social media like WhatsApp or Twitter.So, in December 2018, he incorporated all 365 emojis from his project into an app which he titled ‘Zouzoukwa.’

In 2019, it was nominated for the Best App of 2019 by the African Talents Awards, which celebrates young Africans in creative fields.

Why do record ocean temperatures matter?

With emissions still rising every year, more heat is being trapped by greenhouse gases, and the ocean data is crystal clear: an unrelenting and accelerating rise for at least the past half century.

We live on the surface of the Earth, and so air temperature is the most common heat measurement. But two-thirds of the planet’s area is ocean and water can absorb far more heat than air. As a result, just 4% of the heat trapped by greenhouse gases warms the air and land.

The oceans and atmosphere are inextricably linked. Changing ocean heat means changing rains, and that means more floods in some places and more droughts and wildfires in others. Furthermore, hotter oceans mean more sea level rise, threatening cities from Shanghai to Miami and Rio de Janeiro to Alexandria. Hotter oceans also supercharge storms.

The way to end global heating and tackle the climate emergency is to stop emitting greenhouse gases. Most importantly that means a rapid end to fossil fuel burning, plus the protection and regeneration of forests.

Let’s rediscover hobbies in 2020

Everything doesn’t have to be a hustle, side hustle, or money making enterprise. Sometimes, it’s just fun to do something because it brings you joy, peace, relaxation, or allows you to be creative.

Additionally, hobbies don’t have to cost a ton of money or eat a ton of time. Like photography. Walk around town and take photos with your phone. Interested in a certain topic? Join a meet group and meet new humans to discuss it with. Want to learn to knit? Look up some YouTube videos and head to the thrift store for cheap supplies courtesy of everyone who gave up before you. Enjoy running? Join a local running group; most run stores have them for all levels and paces. Like cooking? Start a progressive cooking club with some friends. Into podcasts? Organize a podcast listening club that meets every week or month to discuss episodes. Want to do good? Volunteer your time for a cause/org you’re passionate about. Hobbies seem impossible because we’ve been groomed to be hyper productive so time spent not earning $ is a waste. We’ve also been taught that consumption is equal to good so obviously I need the biggest/best thing to have a hobby. Nope. Just spend a little time doing something you like.

The earth’s oldest trees

Many tree species live for hundreds of years; others, including the sequoias, survive for thousands. Bristlecone trees, in ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, can last almost indeÞnitely.

For millennia, the bristlecones have remained resistant to fire, harsh weather and soil conditions, and insect threats.

Minute changes in the tree-ring record make bristlecones an exceptionally useful source of data about changing conditions on earth, and that data shows that the trees have also survived hot spells: in 4000 B.C., during the mid-Holocene period, the earth was about one degree Celsius warmer than it is today. But it is on track to get hotter than that.