“You should never read the comments on a news article.” Personally, I think it is important. Here we have CNN.com’s Scientists find signs of life in Australia dating back 3.48 billion years.
. . . [The discovery] centers on something called microbially induced sedimentary structures, commonly shortened to the acronym MISS. It’s a mouthful to many, but some scientists believe this phenomenon could be the key to finding the first demonstrable evidence of life.
A MISS forms via a process involving microorganisms (found in what’s called microbial mats) with rocks (or sediment), something that can only happens under certain conditions.
As the study’s lead author, Nora Noffke of Old Dominion University, notes, “The signal of early life forms has been preserved more clearly in MISS” compared with other prehistoric finds. Another unique thing about them, unlike some other geological phenomena, is that a MISS structure formed a few billion years ago can look much like one a few hundred-thousand years old. Yet another is that it can show not just evidence of one organism but an entire ecosystem, one in which living things coexisted with one another...
In the comments section, the news is greeted with an argument about God ending in:
The best part of you ran down your mother’s leg.
Few places on the internet can show us the breadth and depth of the human intellect quite like a pop-sci article with an open comments section.