Arch390/790 Visible Certainty
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Chris Cornelius, Associate Professor
In geology there are many different ways that minerals are classified. I think it would be highly advantageous of you to take a look at maybe a specific mineral and graphically analyze all the different classification tools. That might be something interesting to try:)
What if you examined an incredibly prominent mineral like carbon and analyzed it at a molecular level? This would narrow the focus to a specific investigation and allow for a greater understanding of the specifics. You could examine the various end-results of carbon - how can the molecular organization or source of the carbon effect its end appearance (i.e. diamond, graphite, coal). How does the time span and variables associated with its sourcing around the world effect this outcome? Can you use these variables to pinpoint why certain geological areas are more prone to diamonds vs. coal? Can the two ever be found together?If you hone in on a specific mineral as Zach suggested, you can begin applying a greater breadth of analysis to define the direction you take. It might result in a more satisfying conclusion.
Some of the other comments direct an interesting path that you could venture into. I was thinking about location when reading your post. What if, or how could location play a role into categorizing the minerals. Maybe similarities would arise. I am visualizing a world map of some sorts allowing viewers to understand where some well known minerals are from. It seems people may know certain minerals by name, but not fully know where they are coming from. This could further open up the gates of economic disparity related to mineral excavating in nations around the world.
Some of the ideas above are interesting paths for you to venture down. I was thinking about location being a possible variable for you. It seems minerals are easily known by name, but most people do not know where their precious minerals are coming from. This could open up the flood gate for other possible data to drift in. What about a countries economic wealth directly related to mineral excavation. Or worker rights and pay scale across the globe for mineral excavation. This data could graphically display problems across the globe related to wealth and mineral extraction.
The best place to start, and I think the most simple way is obviously to narrow your search, and look into the different variables that are available to categorize your information. At that point you will be able to make some inferences as to the makeup of the chosen minerals.
This presents so many avenues of exploration. Riffing off of what Ainsley said, is it possible to investigate the multitude forms of carbon? How do these forms influence human development. In the early 20th century, Texas produced the majority of oil, and now with the advent of fracking, upstate New York, and North Dakota are important sites for carbon mining.
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