16 January 2009

Friday Links

Excellent point

I found this video on Pharyngula. This little animated video makes such a good argument about blindly following rituals and such.

The story is well-written and also quite sad. Perhaps it is sadder still that we actually know people like the boy's parents.

Methane on Mars

Exciting news. The presence or rather mysterious spurt of methane gas on Mars has brought up that nagging question: Was there / is there life on Mars?

A surprising and mysterious belch of methane gas on Mars hints at possible microbial life underground, but also could come from changes in rocks, a new NASA study found. The presence of methane on Mars could be significant because by far most of the gas on Earth is a byproduct of life — from animal digestion and decaying plants and animals.

They had wine?

Interesting little discovery in Armenia.

Scientists might have found the oldest brain - well, a rather well preserved human brain from the good old days. That would make it the oldest brain, wouldn't it?

These discoveries are significant in that big breakthroughs in technology occurred close to /around southern Iraq.

*Side note* It's always sad to see archaeologists refer to that area as the cradle of civilization - it was someone's (read: U.S.) bright idea to blast an important part of world history. No wait, there is still a lot of blasting going on.

Back to original story.

Researchers also found a trio of Copper Age human skulls, each buried in a separate niche inside the three-chambered, 600-square–meter cave. The skulls belonged to 12- to 14-year-old girls, according to anatomical analyses conducted independently by three biological anthropologists. Fractures identified on two skulls indicate that the girls were killed by blows from a club of some sort, probably in a ritual ceremony, Areshian suggested.

Remarkably, one skull contained a shriveled but well-preserved brain. “This is the oldest known human brain from the Old World,” Areshian said. The Old World comprises Europe, Asia, Africa and surrounding islands.

Oh and they found wine making devices.


Ayya said...

Instruction manual, wine and methane. Must have been a good friday... :)

Ayya said...

Btw.. the instruction book video is a nice find.

Aktief Kulture said...

All findings are linked to one another, hey? :)

I was quite moved by instruction manual, been passing that link around to everyone as well.