Agriculture, Anthropology, History, News, Science

And then i threw it on the ground: first signs of farming come from the middle east, some 23,000 years ago

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Who, where and when “invented” farming? A new study pushes back the advent of farming by a couple of thousand years.

History, News

What may be the oldest Koran fragments were discovered in Birmingham, UK

An excerpt from what looks like one of the oldest Koran copies over. The written is extremely well preserved and legible.

A Koran manuscript etched on sheep or goat skin may be the oldest discover so far, according to a radiocarbon dating. The fragments, preserved in pristine condition and written in a surprisingly clear Hijazi script, were found in the University of Birmingham’s library. The dating shows the Koran copy is at least 1,370 years old, and was edited between 568 and 645 by a person who likely knew the prophet Muhammed himself. Though it’s not clear if it’s the oldest Koran fragment, it’s definitely out there among the earliest Islamic texts – a reason to rejoice for the large Islamic community in Birmingham.

Feature Post, Great Pics, History, Videos

In God we Trust: but other people don’t, really. Let’s look at religions

The Religion Tree, by Simon E. Davies

What drives us to create these intricate systems of tales, beliefs and myths, who starts them and why do they propagate? Is it just the need to explain the unexplainable? Is there a deeper need for order nestled in our brain that makes us pin rain and drought, life and death on some higher, but purposeful, being?

I don’t know. But what i can show you is what we know about how religion appeared, spread, and thought us up till today.

Archaeology, Health & Medicine, History, News, Science

14,000-year-old molar gives us oldest proof of dentistry, and will make you love your dentist’s drill

(A) Occlusal view of the RM3. (B) Detailed view of the large occlusal cavity with the four carious lesions and the chipping area on the mesial wall. Section A-A is directed mesio-distally, passing through the larger carious lesion. (C) MicroCT slice of the Villabruna RM3 in correspondence with section A-A.
Image via Nature

Just as today -or a little less often, as we tend to abuse our teeth quite a bit nowadyas – early humans had to deal with cavities. An infected 14,000 year old molar may give us a glimpse into how they treated such afflictions, and is the oldest known evidence of dentistry.

Read more: http://www.zmescience.com/science/archaeology/14000-year-old-molar-gives-us-oldest-proof-of-dentistry-and-will-make-you-love-your-dentists-drill-7234882/#ixzz3h7pXU5lm

History, News, Offbeat

The Great Wall of China is Slowly Wasting Away

Great Wall of China near Jinshanling. Image via Wikimedia.

The Great Wall of China, one of the most marvelous constructions on Earth is slowly fading away due to the reckless behavior of humans. The effects of travel and recycling of the stones for other constructions is taking a monumental toll on the Great Wall, and almost 30 percent of the structure is now gone.

Feature Post, History

Skeletons with lavish jewelry found in Roman catacombs

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They call them the Catacomb Saints – ancient Roman corpses that were exhumed from the catacombs of Rome, given fictitious names and sent abroad as relics of saints from the 16th century to the 19th century. They were decorated with extreme lavishness, as you can see below. But why – why would they be decorated with such luxury? Were they actually

History, Other

Tanktastic: a brief overview of the modern-day knight in shining armour

A Challanger 2 Main Battle Tank from the Royal Dragoon Guards.
Image via: wikimedia.org

We here at ZME Science aren’t very fond of war. We much rather prefer to drink beer in the shade and solve our differences with rock-paper-scissors. But we (meaning I) also think that tanks are really awesome. They embody so much of what humanity has learned over the millennia. From fire and mining used to forge the hulls of these behemoths, to gunpowder that sends a shell kilometers away to a point that we can calculate with equations that some of the brightest minds have made possible. We spent centuries learning how to build their beating hearts.

History, Science, Space

Spacewalking in the 60’s: Edward White’s EVA mission.

Edward White, in the EVA over a cloud-covered Pacific Ocean, the maneuvering gun is visible in White’s right hand. The visor of his helmet is gold-plated to protect him from the unfiltered rays of the sun.
Image via: wikipedia.org

Fifty years ago today, on June 3rd, 1965, 19:46, astronaut Edward White pushed away from the Gemini 4 capsule and into history as the first American to walk in space. Although a Russian had been the first to float in space, Ed White was determined to be the first to use jet propulsion to actually maneuver himself in space. With millions of

Great Pics, History, Science

4000 years of human civilizations charted, the Histomap

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Created by John B. Sparks and first printed by Rand McNally, the Histomap started selling in 1931 for the price of US$1. Folded in a green cover that advertised it as “clear, vivid, and shorn of elaboration,” and promising to “hold you enthralled”, the 5-foot-long work of historic awesomeness aims to deliver big.

Feature Post, History

Early SciFi: A 2nd century AD novel about traveling to outer space, meeting aliens and Homer

Lucian of Samosata’s ship getting swept up to the moon by a tempest.

Some argue that the first genuine science fiction novel is Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, where technology bordering necromancy is used to reanimate the dead. But labeling what falls under science fiction can be troublesome. Christopher McKitterick says that in the strict etymological sense, it’s literature about scientific discovery or technological change, but then argues that this definition misses the mark; instead Mckiterrick believes “SF is about how we have changed, how external change affects us, how things we do change the world around us, and how we will continue to change over time.” What about works of fiction written in a time when science wasn’t even considered a distinct field, separate from natural philosophy, or study of religious truth, etc? Depending on how you class what makes science fiction, Lucian of Samosata’s “True Stories” might be the first science fiction novel. The characters venture to distant realms including the moon, the sun, and strange planets and islands. The star protagonist is Lucian himself who happens to stumble upon aliens on the moon and finds himself in the midst of a war between the lunar and sun empires.