Tag Archives: New Zealand

Cipher is Ten

It was like jumping off the end of a pier into unknown depths with unknown dangers – but a quick calculation (in actuality lots of deep reflection) indicated that it was safe…-ish; nevertheless it was exhilarating. Thus, Cipher was born. In early September 2010 Cipher started trading and by late September we had our first […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Babel (redux balal)

My father worked for the phone company all his life. Actually, that isn’t completely true. In 1943, during World War II, he joined the Marines, got married and managed not to get killed. After the war he returned to his job at the C&P Telephone Co., played around on boats in and around the Potomac […]

1 Comment Continue Reading →

Blue Skies Beijing

Yes, I know. Normally the words ‘blue skies’ and ‘Beijing’ aren’t in such close proximity. Yet, when I was there just a couple of weeks ago, it was indeed blue skies. Warm, yes; smoggy, not really. Though I was inside much of the time … I was in the captivating capital of China for the […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Cretaceous Greenhouse World

My son asked me what scores of other children ask their parents at some point: “Dad, have you ever been on TV”? I was in the middle of painting a wall inside the house and was poised to say no… no, sorry son, I have not, when I realized I actually have. So instead I […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

A Fish Story

I have an old fish on the wall, and I get to ponder it’s life every time I walk into my loo at home. I’ve been pondering this fish for the last 24 years. Considering its age, it is not a stinky, yucky fish. In fact it is over 48 million years old, so any […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Playing the variance lute

It was Ron Stanton (U.S. Geological Survey) who instilled in me the importance of proper representative sampling and John C. Ferm (University of Kentucky)* who drove home the concept of variability. In understanding the character of coal beds, these two concepts should mess seamlessly together. Or so you’d think … As it turns out there […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Musings of Micah on the Equator

At 2:56 pm Brisbane time I crossed the equator for the umpteenth time – heading north on flight CZ382. The time is significant because that is the time my son, Micah, gets out of school. When I left this morning en route to Xuzhou, China, where I’ll be teaching for a few weeks, my son […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

Coal and Coalbed Gas – New Book Out!

Considering the impact that coal has on the world, there are surprisingly few technical books dedicated to the subject. Romeo Flores, recently retired from the US Geological Survey (but still a Cipher Associate [see: https://www.ciphercoal.com/the-team/dr-romeo-m-flores/ ]), has gone some way to remedy this situation. His book “Coal and Coalbed Gas: Fueling the Future” has just […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

The Hammer – Redux

For those of you following this blog, you might remember that last year, on my annual field trip for the Geology 483 class (University of Canterbury), I lost my hammer. As is usual, this year as last, we visited the Denniston Plateau, which has an excellent geological section extending from the basement (Greenland Group meta-sediments; […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →

The Hammer

Sadly, I lost a trusted and long-time friend on the Geology 483 field trip: my hammer! I must have taken it out somewhere, either at 12-mile beach, or on top of the Denniston Plateau (perhaps at Burnetts Face) while leading the students around and … well, somewhere out there, she lies. I would have had […]

Leave a comment Continue Reading →