31 October 2009

Down by the sea

“Wide is the ocean, sweet gravity...” while that refrain from Cerys Matthews’ song1 Ocean is intended as poetic metaphor, it is also appropriate to a scientific computing view of things. The size (roughly two thirds of planetary surface area) and mass (on the order of a quintillion tonnes, sloshing around daily under tidal pull) of the oceans are central to their importance and there is little on earth, from its core to the limits of atmosphere or from microbes to tectonics, that can be treated meaningfully without reference to these huge bodies of water and dissolved solutes.


  1. Cerys Matthews, “Ocean”, on Cockahoop. 2003, London: Warner Music. 2564-60306-2

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