October 10, 2011

Echoes from the Past (Oct 10)

A lot of stuff that I won't probably dedicate more time nor space (sadly enough in some cases at least):

Middle Paleolithic:

Mass production of flint flakes at Palestinian Qassem Cave ··> Jerusalem Post, The Media Line, Ron Shimelmitz et al. at Journal of Human Evolution (PPV).

Upper Paleolihic:

Domestic dog with mammoth bone in mouth (left) found in Czech Republic (Gravettian context) ··> Pileta de Prehistoria[es], Discovery News, Journal of Archaeological Science (PPV). 

Australian rock art dated to c. 30 Ka ago in danger because of Rio Tinto mining activities at Burrup Peninsula ··> The Heritage Journal, The Guardian

Children made rock art in Rouffignac ··> The Heritage Journal.

Basque chasm captured sample of late UP animals. The "Kiputz IX trap" near Deba was a death sentence for 48 deer, 23 reindeer and 18 steppe bisons, none of which show any sign of human consumption. The best preserved skull is that of a male bison (right). The site is dated to c. 19-18 Ka ago, in the Solutrean period ··> Gara[es].

20,000 years ago Azrak (Jordan) was a fertile inhabited region and the first one to bury people in crouched position, it seems ··> MENA.

End of war allows dig to recover Paleolithic artifacts at Jaffna Peninsula (Ceylon) ··>  Sri Lanka News.

Neolithic & Metal Ages:

City older than Troy, dated to c. 7000 years ago, found not far away ··> National Turk, Hurriyet, Today's Zaman.

Kurgan explored with tiny flying drone ··> Live Science.

Elevation reconstruction of the tomb

Girl's tomb found near henge in Kent ··> The Heritage Journal.

Project to dig islands around Britain to establish origins of Neolithic ··> PhysOrg, Irish Weather Online

Iruña-Veleia: map shows there were two Veleias. Veleia Gori [VIIL(II)I(A) GORI] and Veleia Nova [VIILIII NOVVA.]are mentioned in a stone map of the Basque-Roman town ··> Iruina[es] (also here).

The 'map' (click to expand)
I'd speculate that GORI (a word that also appears in other inscriptions) might be goiri (upwards and attested as surname modernly) it could be also goren(a) (of the high, or something like that). Previously it had been supposed to mean gorri (red) because it appeared along with other color names, who knows?

Conservation efforts for Göbekli Tepe ··> Popular Archaeology.

Uncertain period:

Heart-shaped Australian stone ring at Little River (Victoria) could be astronomical observatory ··> BBC.

Human genetics and biology:

Extremely pale people may not be getting enough sun without burning (and hence may benefit from extra fish in the diet or industrial supplements) ··> SD.  

Claim, based on mtDNA, that major population expansion in East Asia is pre-Neolithic ··> Hong-Xiang Zheng et al. at PLoS ONE (open access).

Figure 2. mtDNA Bayesian skyline plot showing the size trend of 4 East Eurasian populations.
Take with a pinch of salt, of course. 

CHB: Chinese Han from Beijing, CHS CH from South China, CHD: CH from Denver, USA, JPT: Japanese from Tokyo. Notice how, whatever the case, CHS have the softest curve, with almost no sudden expansion signatures. 

Proposal to estimate sex bias in gene flow ··> N. Osada at PLoS ONE (open access). 

Jomon Era ancient mtDNA of Hokkaido Japan (includes N9b, D4h2, G1b, and M7a) ··> Dienekes, Noboru Adachi et al. at Physical Anthropology (PPV).

Population genetics conference at Porto, Portugal, on November 23-25 ··> link.

Other science news:

Solar system once had fifth gas planet, but was expelled ··> PhysOrg

Can primordial black holes be the elusive dark matter ··> PhysOrg.

Magic mushrooms (Psylocybe sp.) can impact certain personalities for the better, while being trivial for others ··> Psychedelic Research, SD.

2011 IgNobel prizes:
  • Physiology: no contagious yawning for turtles.
  • Chemistry: wasabi (pungent radish) fire alarm for heavy sleepers.
  • Medicine: people make better and worse decisions when under pressure to go to the loo.
  • Psychology: why do we sigh?
  • Biology: beetles love beer bottles.
  • Physics: why discus throwers get dizzy (and hammer ones do not)?
  • Mathematics: to a long list of doomsayers who predicted the end of the World... and failed.
  • Peace: smashing wrongly parked luxury cars with tanks in Vlinus, Lithuania.
  • Safety: driving while a visor intermittently blocks your sight.

Can neutrinos be faster than light? ··> Nature.

Gonorrhoea becoming resistant to antibiotics ··> BBC.

Special thanks to (see also): Stone Pages' Archaeo News.

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