Infinity Imagined
Multicellular Organic
Neural Network
Lives in Nitrogen-Oxygen Atmosphere
270 K - 300 K
Eats, Breathes, Thinks, Creates
wetwareontologies:

When sequencing 400,00 pieces of viral DNA located in Lassen Volcanic National Park he found a gene (made from DNA) that looked like the gene for a protein coat from an RNA virus. Upon further sequencing they found a a gene for DNA replication typical of a DNA virus. This was significant as the prevalent theory is that the prebiotic world was composed of RNA. The find proves that modern viruses can combine information coded in the two normally separate genetic molecules. This lends support to the idea that it was viruses that performed the “upgrade” from RNA and effectively gave rise to DNA (and all life as we know it today).
Stedman suggests that it may have formed when an RNA virus, DNA virus and retrovirus all infected a cell at the same time. This perfect viral storm could have triggered a three way genetic mash-up.
via New Scientist [link]
fyeahpaleontology:

alphynix:

Let me introduce you to graptolites. These odd little prehistoric creatures were colonies of tiny marine animals which formed protective cup-like structures around their bodies and filter-fed on microscopic plankton. They’re classified as hemichordates, and their closest living relatives are a similar member of that group called pterobranchs.They appeared in the fossil record between about 490 and 320 million years ago, and came in a wide range of shapes and sizes. There were single rows, double rows, branches, spirals, forks, and even net-like forms. The earliest types lived attached to the sea floor, but later ones floated around freely near the surface of the ocean and could reach lengths of up to 1.5m (~5ft). Some may have attached themselves to seaweed and floating debris, others are thought to have dangled from their own little bubble-like flotation rafts.Their remains are so numerous and widespread that they’re very useful as “index fossils”, allowing paleontologists to precisely date the age of the rocks they’re found in.

(More Information: 1, 2, 3)
lostbeasts:

Wiwaxia was a kind of prehistoric annelid worm (like earthworms). The spines and plates on its body were for defense against predators, and it had a mouth on its underside with teeth that could be retracted when not in use. The biggest fossil specimens have been 2 inches long, and the smallest 3.4 millimetres.
n-a-s-a:

47 Tuc Near the Small Magellanic Cloud 
Image Credit & Copyright: Ivan Eder 
space-pics:

Alternative processing on Eta Carinae complex [via /r/astrophotography]http://space-pics.tumblr.com/
pappubahry:

Earth, photographed by Mariner 10, 1973.
stellar-indulgence:

The Whirlpool Galaxy (M51A or NGC 5194) and (M51B or NGC 5195, left). The Whirlpool Galaxy is a grand-design spiral galaxy, interacting with NGC 5195, a dwarg galxy. Both galaxies are located 23 ± 4 million light-years away in Canes Venatici.
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