Sunday, May 31, 2009

Alexander von Humboldt Celebration

Summertime's gettin' here FINALLY, and with it, the blessed relief of FIELD WORK!!!! Still a few weeks to go, of course, but we're gettin' there, slow and steady!

Anyway, to celebrate this auspicious annual event, let's remember the scientist who for all intents and purposes, is the Patron Saint of Field Work...Alexander von Humboldt! May 2009 is the 150th anniversary of this great scientists death (specifically May 6th, so we're a little late). Humboldt was a German naturalist and botanist, and was famous for his extensive field work in Latin America...and I mean EXTENSIVE. Ol' Humboldt was one of the first "modern scientists", who went about his work in Latin America with that monomaniacal methodical madness that signifies the True Field Scientist (TM).

If you've read The Voyage of The Beagle, then you'll know that Humboldt's careful methods and emphasis on field data were a major source of inspiration to Charles Darwin. And, of course, you've heard of the Humboldt Current, right? Named after him! Read some more about him here!

Anyway, when you're lucky enough to be out in the field, doing some work and engaging in the tried and true method of field science, give a tip o' the hat to Alexander von Humboldt, one of the Greats!

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