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When the archivists of the 21st century dig back into the history of the science of the earth, they will fail to see some of the distinctions of which we today are acutely conscious. Geology, geophysics, geochemistry, paleontology, and their brethren will have blurred into a single mature and rather noncontroversial discipline.
We can expect that the various earth sciences of today will continue to undergo the accelerating maturation processes that have been followed in the older sciences. The trends are clearly visible today--the descriptive and taxonomic in geology, the intuitive and subjective in geophysics are surely losing ground to the postulational and mathematical approaches of physics and chemistry. Today much of our basis for differentiation among earth sciences lies not in what those scientists are studying but in the tools that they use. Such distinctions cannot prevail. By the 21st century (only 29 years away), the successors of today's geological journals will be as full of mathematics as are today's geophysics journals. The neo-geophysical journals will be steeped in geological ideas.
Those of us in both fields who fail to adapt to the new trends will be available as subjects of study by the paleoscientists of the next century for we shall surely be fossilized.
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