I Zinc This Is A Good Thing

See, the "joke" in the subject line works because the English language has words that sound alike, but with different meanings. Here I am "playing" on them, so to speak. Also, I just read that Yemen is investing in a $200 million zinc mine, apparently the first mine in Yemen. Output is projected to reach some 80,000 tons annually. A few quick thoughts.

1)I have no idea if that is a lot of zinc. Frankly, I am not even sure what one uses zinc for. I'm reasonably sure I have never purchased any.

2) I just read that zinc "also acts as a sacrificial anode in cathodic protection", which leaves me even more confused and frankly a little scared. It all sounds very religious.

3) Regardless, there is a chance- albeit a small, laughable one- that simply because I don't know something doesn't mean it is unimportant. The important thing, of course, is the diversification of the economy. Even though this is only expected to create 400 direct jobs (mining, supervision) and 1800 indirect jobs (lodging, maintenance, food), it has the potential to add another wrinkle to the economy, which right now rests largely on shrinking oil reserves and tourists, the latter group being deliberately driven away by al-Qaeda. Coupled with the oil investments below, I'd say this is a good start to the week for Yemen. It is too early to tell- and clearly these are medium-to-long term strategies which could be undermined with the next explosion- but the country's staggering walk along the brink seems to have focused some thought.

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less
Photo by Alina Grubnyak on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Do human beings have a magnetic sense? Biologists know other animals do. They think it helps creatures including bees, turtles and birds navigate through the world.

Keep reading Show less

Harvard: Men who can do 40 pushups have a 'significantly' lower risk of heart disease

Turns out pushups are more telling than treadmill tests when it comes to cardiovascular health.

Airman 1st Class Justin Baker completes another push-up during the First Sergeants' push-up a-thon June 28, 2011, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. Participants were allowed 10 minutes to do as many push-ups as they could during the fundraiser. Airman Baker, a contract specialist assigned to the 354th Contracting Squadron, completed 278 push-ups. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Janine Thibault)
Surprising Science
  • Men who can perform 40 pushups in one minute are 96 percent less likely to have cardiovascular disease than those who do less than 10.
  • The Harvard study focused on over 1,100 firefighters with a median age of 39.
  • The exact results might not be applicable to men of other age groups or to women, researchers warn.
Keep reading Show less

U.S. reacts to New Zealand's gun ban

On Thursday, New Zealand moved to ban an array of semi-automatic guns and firearms components following a mass shooting that killed 50 people.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Gun control supporters are pointing to the ban as an example of swift, decisive action that the U.S. desperately needs.
  • Others note the inherent differences between the two nations, arguing that it is a good thing that it is relatively hard to pass such legislation in such a short timeframe.
  • The ban will surely shape future conversations about gun control in the U.S.
Keep reading Show less