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Tag Archives: rock doc

Rock Doc: Plants respond to sounds of insects eating leaves

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – Plants are not as dumb as they look.

At least to me, plants have never seemed like the brightest bulb in the box. They stand around, looking green, hoping for a sunny day but not able to walk, talk or turn on the TV. However, due to a recent university press release, I’ve got to rethink my attitudes about vegetation.Continue reading

Rock Doc column: How hard is that?

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – A good friend of mine checks each morning on the Web for the final “Jeopardy” game show question. It’s the last question on the taped TV program to be broadcast later that day. I don’t go to movies or follow sports, so I’m often at a loss when it comes to many quiz show questions. But recently I was in a position to answer the “Jeopardy” question because of my early training in geology.Continue reading

Rock Doc: A light fast twice per week

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

petersPULLMAN, Wash. – It certainly sounded like a fad to me. A while ago I caught a program on public television about a medical doctor in Great Britain. Dr. Michael Mosley, like millions in both that country and in the U.S., found that in middle age he needed to lose weight and lower his blood sugar and cholesterol levels.Continue reading

Rock Doc column: Have a cup of joe to help your eyes?

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

petersPULLMAN, Wash. – My day starts with coffee. I’m too cheap to buy it by the cup from baristas, so I just brew my own Folgers by the pot. I have a cup or two as I settle into work each morning and another cup – sometimes two – in the early afternoon. That may not be wise for a chronic insomniac like myself, but it’s a lifelong habit that at this point would be quite tough to break. Continue reading

Rock Doc: Designing healthier snack foods with new wheat

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – Most of us don’t spend a lot of time cooking from scratch. What’s known as processed foods – everything from snacks to boxed dinners – makes up a great deal of what most Americans eat. Indeed, the majority of what most of us eat is processed to one degree or another.Continue reading

Rock Doc column: Seize the day and visit a park

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – This is the time of year to get outdoors and observe Mother Nature in all her glory. With a simple field guide to trees or birds and a Sunday afternoon trip to a local park, you can play amateur scientist and immerse yourself in forces larger than those we humans create.Continue reading

Rock Doc column: A tale of two stoves – and energy choices

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – My elderly aunt recently came into some money. She decided – very generously – to send part of it to each of her nieces and nephews. This gave me the task of choosing how I wanted to spend an unexpected $1,000.Continue reading

Rock Doc: Training microbes to make biofuel

By E. Kirsten Peters, College of Agricultural, Human & Natural Resource Sciences

peters-e-k-2010-80PULLMAN, Wash. – When you fill your tank, you likely see a little sticker on the pump saying part of the fuel is ethanol. Ethanol is a biofuel, which means it comes from plants like corn rather than from fossil fuel – ancient carbon that’s been buried within the Earth for millions of years.Continue reading