I told lil guy that chalk is made of the skeletons of tiny tiny animals and now he's saying he's never gonna touch chalk again

It's true too. The animals are called diatoms. They're microscopic.

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Diatoms are members of the kingdom protista, and they are single celled life that construct their cell walls out of beautiful glassy silica.

Diatoms make up a big portion of Earth's biomass and we wouldn't be alive without them because they produce about half of the oxygen on earth as they live out their lives in the planet's oceans, streams, lakes and soil

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@interneteh ...silica. As in silicon-dioxide? As in living gemstones? Holy crap yes!

Brb, going to genetically engineer living glass.

@MrControl some scientists think they could be useful in making biofuels because they store excess energy as lipids

@interneteh diatoms also have some amazing light weight design features like recursive combs and complex combinations of ribbings and gills to strengthen their outer shell against predators while keeping their weight low.

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