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Best Minerals, Quartz - Welcome

Posted by Rock Currier  
Rock Currier March 06, 2009 11:25AM
In this forum we hope to create articles with pictures about all the good Quartz specimens from all the good Quartz localities. You are welcomed and encouraged to help create content for this and all the Best Mineral forums. You are encouraged to use the approximate format that has already been developed and exampled in the more extensively developed examples in the Best A Minerals forum. If you would like to take a crack at creating content for a particular quartz locality(s), please read over the suggestions and example in the sticky message at the top of the A minerals forum and then add it to this thread entry and I will work with you and walk you through any problems you may encounter. Ill also create a thread entry for the mineral you want to work on and help get you started. You will not be able to create new threads in this forum, unless you are approved as a moderator of the Best Minerals forum. If you have something you think is worth adding to the thread about a particular mineral, just make a thread entry about it, and Ill add it into the thread for that particular entry or at leas ask you for more information about it. There is a huge amount of work to do, so lets get started.

Ideally what we want to know about each significant mineral from each locality is:

1. What is the largest crystal of the mineral that the locality has produced?
2. What do the best specimens from this locality look like and where can one be seen?
3. Does the locality produce a variety of different kinds of specimens of this species, and what do the best of each type look like and how many of them were found etc.
4. What are the associated minerals found with this species and what is its geological setting?
5. How abundant are these specimens and when were they found? A type locality? In other words, how rare are they.
6. How do they compare to other specimens of the same mineral from other localities?
7. How much is it worth. This should probably be optional, but in cases where specimens are worth thousands of dollars we should probably say something of the value of these things.
8. What kind of care and feeding do these specimens require? Are they delicate, radioactive, unstable, color changeable etc.?
9. Are the specimens commonly faked, and if so, how to tell if they are?
10. Are there any interesting stories relating to the collecting of these specimens or their discovery as a new mineral?

Of course this is difficult to try ans answer all these questions about quartz from each locality we will we will do a lot better job when writing about them.

I recently completed a survey of the quartz images here on mindat and though the number of quartz images goes up most every day here is what I found:

Interesting data about quartz on mindat.
When I started wonk on this quartz thing there were 28766 localities for quartz listed and these were represented by nearly 5000 images. The numbers seem to grow each day. Of all of these there were only 65 or 66 countries represented in the quartz pictures on mindat, depending on how you wanted to count the countries. The Seventh edition of the London Times Atlas of the world lists 316 states and territories of the world and lists 206 countries. This indicates to me that we have barely started to scratch the surface of the planet on what is out there.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/25/2009 01:54AM by Rock Currier.
David Von Bargen March 20, 2009 11:02PM
Are you planning to greak these down by countries (with all the varieties) or try for varieties +- countries? ie. separate articles for things like citrine and amerthyst, smoky quartz, agate etc.

We also will have to do something else with the mineral page links since this won't work with one mineral/many countries entries.
Rock Currier March 21, 2009 01:56AM
Right now I have started to grind my way down through all the quartz images on mindat, making notes of possible images that could be used in the articles and opening threads by country for those countries we have quartz pictures for. By the time I am done, I will have some idea of the size of the task facing us. How are those tags coming along. I think we will need tags for each block of information(each species we write about at each locality). You/me/Jolyon etc will need to figure out a way to sort all this stuff and call it up with some sort of search procedure. In the specimen cataloging program I developed, there was a tab we called Properties. In the system manager there was a little database where we could create and add as many properties as we wanted, and when we wanted to tag a record with any property or properties, all we had to do was go to the properties tab and tick off those we wanted associated with a specimen. In this case if we had a system like that, we could click on a button and tag each data block with as many tags as we thought we needed. The example below represents what I call a data block. In this case we might want to tag this block with"Amethyst, Stalactites, Pseudomorphs, Cut and Polished specimens for instance. What do you think?

QuartzUruguayArtigas Department, Artigas, Santa Ana Quarry
Here a picture
Here the text about the locality.

Also, Dave, what appears to be happening is that as I open more new threads, either for individual species or for ones like Quartz, Belgium, people are jumping in and adding their input without us having to beg for it. Look at what Harjo did for Belgium quartz which was a complete surprise to me. Also, when I get the Quartz Country frame work complete, then I can go back to people like Sy & Ann Frazier of San Francisco, who have spent years making notes about quartz and try and see if I can get them interested in working on quartz. In a recent email from them they said that they had ten filling cabinets full of notes about quartz. If we can hornswaggle them into working on quartz, it would be a good deal for mindat. There are I think a lot of people out there that have a lot of good stuff to contribute if we can give them a viable forum and format where people can see the results. Many of them now realize that getting their stuff published in a book will pretty well limit them in what they can do and how many pictures they can show, and when all is said and done, they will get paid hardly anything for it. I know Bart Cannon (Minerals of Washington) is like that. He would like to publish a new version of the Minerals of Washington, but doesn't know if it will ever get done or not, mostly because the cost of publishing it will eat up most if not all of the profits.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.

Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 03/21/2009 02:16AM by Rock Currier.
Amir C. Akhavan March 21, 2009 03:10PM
Hi Rock,

if I may comment on this: Way too many pictures.
If I look at Minas Gerais, for example, I just think, "Gosh. Let's see who has the time and nerves to start this".
This will end as a patchwork article.
10 Images per country with an option to group them sounds more doable.
I don't mean to be negative, but read your own "60 hours" response to Harjo's
great work "in Belgium" :D

Amir C. Akhavan March 21, 2009 03:13PM
... unless I got something wrong and you plan to sum up and merge peoples' contributions.
Harjo Neutkens March 21, 2009 03:35PM
Amir, my friend, if you upload your beautiful (!!!) Alpine Quartz photos on Mindat you can start right away on your article, or do we have to send you flowers as Rock suggested B)-



btw I opened a pocket in a Quartz vein in the Ardennes yesterday. I know this forest road near Bastogne that cuts a succesion of Quartz veins.
Sadly, as the pocket was only 10 cm below the road most of the content was damaged by the frost.
I had to work fast because the forest department doesn't like crazy people messing with their roads......

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 03/21/2009 03:36PM by Harjo Neutkens.
Rock Currier March 22, 2009 01:44PM
Yes lots of grouping and culling. The guy who writes the article gets to pick the pictures but he should let other people participate and pass as much credit around as possible. I have been slowly winding my down through all the quartz pictures on mindat and making notes of possible images to use. I have only about 1000 more images to wade through. I find that in some instances there should be much better pictures than there are, but the biggest problem is that about many of those quartz localities I know very little about, and in some instances think many of the localities are not very accurate. It is a real mess. I was bewildered by all the Swiss localities for instance and realize I don't know enough about them to write about them effectively. Would you have an interest if doing so? About all I can to in many instances is to provide a frame work and a format where people who know more than I do about different localities can bring some order to the chaos.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Amir C. Akhavan March 22, 2009 11:52PM
Hi Rock,

1000 pictures, that's nothing B)-

I've thought about it once more, and I think that I'm not the right one to do a complete article (yet).
I think I know a few things about quartz that most people don't, but I do not really have a comprehensive knowledge about all the different localities, not even Alpine localities. I know those I visited very well because I really want to know how it works.

So I will go through your entire selection for all countries and see if I find something I know or something that I might explain or an annotation that needs to be corrected and add my comments.
I will leave out certain varieties because that will get me into bad arguments about the proper naming of things :D .

About Harjo's suggestion to upload some of my images. I don't really mind doing so, I just never felt there's a need because of the overwhelming number of images already present on Mindat, it would just be the 157th Elba prasem image, for example. And honestly one would not like to see something that was so much work drown in an ocean of other images.
As Harjo has said himself in the Austria section, many of the specimens in the already selected images are not "the best", and it is clear that my specimens do not fit in the "best" box either. They show things that are typical or have some explanatory value, and they show images of specimens I found myself or specimens I could afford, not "the best".

Anyway, I'll go through the entire batch.
I would have done that anyway - to find new things I did not know about (see my Bolivia comment). ;)
I will be done in 2010, that's much faster :D

Rock Currier March 23, 2009 12:59AM
I know exactly how you feel. There is nothing like going through all 6000 plus quartz images to make you realize how little you know about most of the quartz localities and that what you do know about is just a drop in the bucket. Pick out a country where you know something about some of the localities and write about those and lash them up with images in the format that we are following. Just start with one or two and lets see how it shapes up. Others will help and make suggestions and though you might not know everything about those familiar localities, you probably know other people that also know about them, and between you and them, that is most of what is known about those places. For years one of my special interests were the borate minerals from Boron, California and I probably know about as much as any one, but know a few people that also know about them, or parts of them. A couple people have gone and died on me and now less is known about them than before. We need to try and capture as much information as possible before more people go and die on us. That is what this project is about.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Amir C. Akhavan March 24, 2009 11:21PM
Hi Rock,

could you do us a favor and put numbers before the links to the images, like


Of course the numbering would start at 1 for each country.
Otherwise you have to copy the entire link and locality text, which is a lot of work.

Rock Currier March 25, 2009 12:45AM
I can put numbers in front of them, but I don't understand about it being a lot of work to copy them. Just select the text and or URL and then do the Ctrl+C and the Ctrl+V number and the copy has been made and pasted into what ever document you want. Also, those images are just suggested ones and almost certainly there will be a lot of changes between the images I selected and the more or less finished article. Going through and numbering them all will be hours of work, but if you have a couple of countries in mind you would like to work on, let me know and Ill put numbers on them. You had better explain to me your problem with copying. There is something here I am not understanding.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
Amir C. Akhavan March 25, 2009 01:36AM
Hard to explain. There's no problem. It's just about brevity.
If you check a lot of images, like Austria yesterday, it will turn into a really long posting with all the links, and you are jumping back and forth between images and up and down in your text.
If I just pick a few images it's not too bad.
I'd rather say something like "pics 4,17 and 19 should be included" or "as also seen in pic 31 and Italy, pic 45 ".
Of course, if 500 people contribute, and the topic grows 5 miles long, then the full text/URL might be necessary.
William C. van Laer December 01, 2009 04:17PM
How about a classification of quartz with inclusions? It seems to me this very important category has been passed over, and as a collector of quartz and included quartz, I have posted many pictures on my home page of these....

William C. (CHRIS) van Laer: "I'm using the chicken to measure it..."
Rock Currier December 13, 2009 12:18PM
I love inclusions in quartz. I have an extensive collection of phantoms and other inclusions, hundreds of them from my many trips to Brazil for my business when the crystal power thing was going crazy. I was one of three "partners" who actually ran a little quartz mine in the hills out of Joaquim Felicio that produced spectacular quartz phantoms that we polished up several thousand of them in a little workshop in GV. If someone wanted to do an article devoted only to quartz inclusions, they would have my full support. Its sort of like how about an article on pseudomorphs or quartz twins. It just needs someone to do it.

Did you see the wonderful article on schalenblende that got done? I am sure it is the best thing that has ever been done on schalenblende.

What I envision for Best Minerals is that the images and text being generated in Best Minerals will eventually be translated to a database or accessed by a search engine that will allow people to search it for things like quartz twins, or phantoms, or for quartz phantoms from Montana or what ever else they are interested in. Right now I am just trying to generate the framework so that people like you can come in and add more photos and switch out the week sisters for better ones, clean up locality errors and to write about what those pictures mean and tell everyone about how many there were, how big and how good they got and their associations, geology, history etc. If you ever want to feel dumb, just pick a mineral and try to write something about all the localities it comes from. It makes you realize that you really don't know very much at all.

Rock Currier
Crystals not pistols.
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