Any television show that markets itself as 'cool' is laden with the tiniest in swimwear, washboard abs, and bad attitudes. Love affairs come in episode four. White, or near-white sand beaches with crystaline blue water establish the settings to be most exotic, as if anything can happen. Grey or brown rocky beaches spell adventure or trouble. Tonnes of memories are forged and shattered over the sandy spans. When it comes to summer, pop culture has it all chalked up to raucous beach parties, crashing waves, and clashing rivals. Glances over super cool sunglasses varying in intentional temperature episodically leave the in-land majority at a loss, with no sand for all those long walks.
Before becoming the symbol of 'cool,' sunglasses first came about as a common accessory because of the discomfort sunlight can present to the human eye. Although now widespread, the first documented case of lenses being used to as a visual aid, whether to guard from glare or distance strain, was by the first-century Roman emperor Nero as he watched the gladiators competing in sand pits through the green of an emerald. While today's glasses seem to come in all colours, and are all easily made of plastic, the first corrective and darkened lenses were made of glass, which is mainly comprised of silicon dioxide.
Where It All Comes From
|Silicon -- not Silicone -- is the second-most popular element on this spinning planet and is trumped only by oxygen. It manifests as a coarse dark grey powder with a bluish tint, but it isn't abundantly found in its pure form. Silicon is more commonly found in dusts, planetoids, and planets as the aforementioned pale silicon dioxide, which is what we commonly call sand, and it's upon its not so colourful surface where people tan, celebrate summer, and have their hearts broken. And it's a part of their super cool sunglasses.|
Melting and Compressing
|Most likely because of its abundance, sand has been manipulated for centuries. Usually almost colourless, sand is used as the principle material for glass making, and said glass making reached an artistic peak during the Romanesque and Gothic periods, where adding metalic salts to silicon dioxide led to the creating of coloured glass panes, or stained glass, which can still be seen in churches and cathedrals today.|
Heating Information Technology
Some argue that manufacturing is bland of colour, but I'd have to argue that they've never taken apart a CD player or an old, defunct PC. Silicon has become an important staple in technological industries, employed in creating semicondutors, intergrated circuits for microchips, or green or brown circuitboards. The heavy use of silicon in the southern section of San Francisco's Bay Area has given it the name 'Silicon Valley,' which is renowned its bustling technological industry. Seeing more of the world and all of its colours from a computer screen has been made possible through the framing and molding of silicon. Listening to favourite songs has become easier and easier, as devices become smaller and smaller, from the evolution of the 8-track to the prismatically blinding CD, onward to today with digital music.
Principally, pieces of beaches are all around us. Anything electronic or glass comes from sand. Most of our grandparents see the world from a beach, so to speak. Concrete for sidewalks depend on sand, so those long walks just have a different feel. So, all of you fellow in-land dwellers out there, lament not. If you long for the ocean, simply bring your hard drive to your ear and listen for the waves.