Change Over Time: Making Sense of the Diversity of Life
What do you see?
To use Jeff Cohen's heuristic metaphor: What would the world look like if you were a very observant mole
that popped up every few hundred, thousand years?
Precambrian - only aquatic simple cells - 750-590mya
Cambrian - Diversity Explosion (life still aquatic) - 590-500mya
Ordovician - First Land Plants - 500-440mya
Carboniferous - Fern and Conifer Jungle & Age of Amphibians - 360-286mya
Cretaceous - Final Days of Dinosours - 144-65mya
To use another Jeff Cohen heuristic tool, Life as we know it today is a palimpsest on the thin biosphere veneer of the earth. Further, some of what we see today is poking through from ancient times.