Titbits

29 May 2010

At www.google.com/hostednews/ there is an article on divers exploring the ruins of Cleopatra's palace, dated May 26th. An international team with a French leader who has spent some years exploring ship wrecks and treasure hunts, is investigating underwater archaeology off the coast at what was Alexandria. It slid into the sea after earthquakes in the 4th and 8th centuries AD and much of the city is still intact - including temples, palaces and military outposts and the general mundane things of life. Many Pharoanic objects were brought from Heliopolis by the Ptolemies and reused - which might interest revisionists.

At www.physorg.com/print194158307.html a plague of rats in North China is eating grassland and sparking a massive extermination drive as it is has seriously impacted on the livelihood of herders in the region. The explosion has been caused by a rise in temperatures it is alleged, since the beginning of May. That may have expanded the problem as the article later admits that overgrazing is another feature of the problem. The numbers of predators such as fox, eagles and snakes has declined through human intervention and as a result of the use of pesticides - now rat poison is being added to the brew.

At www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100526170239.htm May 27th ... reports on data from NASAs Swift satellite that is researching, among other things, black holes (paper in Astrophysical Journal Letters June 20th). Intense emission s from galaxy centres seem to juxtaposition supermassive black holes which give off 10 billion times the energy of our Sun. Some of these are luminous - they include quasars and blazars.

At www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/05/100527141955.htm says Ardipthecus ramidus, a supposed human ancestor, is coming under fire from some scientists who say there is little evidence of dense woodland at the African location where the creature lived some 4.4 million years ago. There is abundant evidence of a savannah habitat (see Science May 26th) according to 8 geologists and anthropologists from 7 universities. The point of the story - and the research, is that the association of this fossil with trees and a canopy seem to argue against consensus theory - humans came down from the trees to adapt to a savannah environment where they learnt to walk upright. In other words, this article is part of a backlash - to undermine the new proposal.