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Antarctica is the driest continent on Earth, and always has been, with new research showing the previous "mega-lake theory" holds no water.
“The truth of the matter is that our understanding of climate change is in its infancy and to claim otherwise is a dangerous delusion.”
When it comes to ancient pyramids, the massive structures erected by the Egyptians on the Giza Plateau receive much of the focus. But on the other side of the world, at Caral in Peru, lies another pyramid complex of similar antiquity, constructed by the Norte Chico people ca. 2600-2000 BCE. The fact that people on both sides of the planet happened to build pyramids at the same time in history is, we are told, a coincidence...your mileage may vary!
During ongoing excavations in northern Sudan, Polish archaeologists from the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology in Poznań, have discovered the remains of a settlement estimated to 70,000 years old. This find, according to the researchers, seems to contradict the previously held belief that the construction of permanent structures was associated with the so-called Great Exodus from Africa and occupation of the colder regions of Europe and Asia.
Human footprints found in Romania’s Ciur-Izbuc Cave represent the oldest such impressions in Europe, and perhaps the world, researchers say.
In the early 1950s, archaeologists unearthed several clay tablets from the 14th century B.C.E.. Found, WFMU tells us, “in the ancient Syrian city of Ugarit,” these tablets “contained cuneiform signs in the hurrian language,” which turned out to be the oldest known piece of music ever discovered, a 3,400 year-old cult hymn. Anne Draffkorn Kilmer, professor of Assyriology at the University of California, produced the interpretation above in 1972.
A fascinating little paper in Brain examines Neurology and psychiatry in Babylon. It’s a collaboration by British neurologist Edward H. Reynolds and Assyriologist James V. Kinnier Wilson.
Medieval graffiti of straw kings, pentagrams, crosses, ships and "demon traps" have been offering a tantalising glimpse into England's past. What do the pictures reveal about life in the Middle Ages?
Fresh off of gaining two new entries to the UNESCO World Heritage List, Turkey is more eager than ever to exercise greater caution regarding access to ancient sites, in an effort to avoid the fate that has befallen other ancient sites damaged by 21st-century tourism.
The 21st century has seen rapid urbanisation and the global population is now expected to grow to more than 8.3 billion by 2050. Currently, 800m hectares – 38% of the earth’s land surface – is farmed and we’ll soon need to give over another 100m hectares if we continue to use current agricultural methods. That’s not additional fertile land that actually exists though, so some are investigating the potential of vertical farming.
Late last week, Brazil’s Indian affairs department (FUNAI) publicly announced an event that many anthropologists and medical researchers had feared. In the remote Brazilian state of Acre, members of a long-isolated Amazon tribe have contracted influenza after making voluntary contact with the outside world. Some researchers now fear that the contacted individuals, who speak a Panoan language, will spread the potentially fatal virus to other nonimmunized members of their tribe.
Children as young as three are able to recognize the same ‘cute’ infantile facial features in humans and animals which encourage caregiving behavior in adults, new research has shown. A study investigating whether youngsters can identify baby-like characteristics – a set of traits known as the ‘baby schema’ – across different species has revealed for the first time that even pre-school children rate puppies, kittens and babies as cuter than their adult counterparts.
In the most advanced prosthetics--such as this crazy mind-controlled robotic arm--electronic hardware interfaces directly with nerves and muscles in the human body. But getting living tissue to play nice with a circuit board is anything but easy, for a number of reasons. One fundamental obstacle you may not have considered: electronics send signals via negatively charged electrons, whereas many of the communications carried out in living tissues take place through the movement of positively-charged particles, such as calcium and potassium ions.
Within the next five years, using mobile devices simply for communication will seem outdated. The Internet of Things (IoT) will allow consumers to interact with nearly every appliance and device they own. Your refrigerator will let you know when you're running low on milk, your dishwasher will inform you when it's ready to be emptied. It's possible that you will be getting more text messages from your devices than from human beings.
Sunswift, a team of engineering students from the University of New South Wales, designed and built a car that holds the Guinness World Record for the fastest solar-powered vehicle. In 2011, that car reached a top speed of 88 km/h (55 mph). The team hopes that its newest vehicle, eVe, will break a 20-year-old electric vehicle record for the highest average speed over a 500 km (310 mi) distance.
The discovery that many small galaxies throughout the universe do not 'swarm' around larger ones like bees do but 'dance' in orderly disc-shaped orbits is a challenge to our understanding of how the universe formed and evolved. The researchers believe the answer may be hidden in some currently unknown physical process that governs how gas flows in the universe, although, as yet, there is no obvious mechanism that can guide dwarf galaxies into narrow planes.
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