1219 stories
·
22 followers

vaspider: glitterarygetsit: amuseoffyre: morgauseoforkney: nancybirch: When I die I want to be...

1 Share

vaspider:

glitterarygetsit:

amuseoffyre:

morgauseoforkney:

nancybirch:

When I die I want to be buried with grave goods that make future archaeologists think I was of much higher status than I actually was so that my grave will be referred to as a princely burial and I’ll be remembered by some cool name like “The Colchester Barrow Princess” (I’ve decided that I will be buried in a highly visible barrow, possibly with a ship) and the National Trust will erect a small museum about me filled with entirely incorrect but cool sounding archaeological assumptions

Be buried literally holding a sword and axe and then sit back and watch the endless ‘powerful warrior queen v. just usual valuable grave goods indicating a high status individual’ debate from the afterlife.

I want a spring-loaded casket and non-degrading glitter. I will be remembered as “that *£^$% thing that killed Professor Hannover”

As an archaelogist I completely support this.

“Characteristic of 21st century society is the sharp delineation between the funerary practices of more conservative, traditionalist groups and the generally younger and more creative subcultures. While those who identified as more conservative nevertheless frequently included personal items in their grave goods, the individuality of their burials pales in comparison with the eccentricity and extravagance of the neoteric groups.  Funerary archaeologists have been hard pressed to find commonalities between these individualistic burials. It is likely that members of these subgroups competed to include the most unique ritual items amongst the grave goods of the deceased.

One example from Colchester could be read as a highly detailed homage to the seventh-century Taplow boat burial. Dendrochronology of the vessel dates the burial to the mid- to late-21st century. The opulence of the burial is at odds with what we know of contemporary social structure. As such, it is likely that the deceased or their family wished to indicate a strong connection to the area by aligning their identity with the Anglo-Saxon royal history of the region.

Another example, this one from Milton Keynes, included a bewildering array of items. Archaeologists uncovered a Tudor coin, a Whitney Houston CD, and a mobile phone inscribed “Bite me, historians”. Taken together, these grave goods indicate a disdain for archaeological research and the reconstruction of identity using material culture. It is possible that members of this subgroup sought to use creative anachronism to conceal the date of their death. Some researchers have argued that individuals buried under similar circumstances believed that this knowledge could be used for identity fraud or necromancy.

There has been some research done into the psychological trauma associated with excavating human remains. Most of this research has focused on the emotional challenges of excavating mass graves resulting from genocide or plague, with the occasional footnote regarding individual burials (such as the excavation of a lead coffin in Whitechapel which produced a fountain of liquefied Roman remains when the air seal was pierced). It is my view, however, that further research in this field is urgently needed following the sad and horrifying events of the recent excavations on Orkney. I am sure I do not need to go into further detail about the dig that shook our discipline to the core, and will refrain from doing so. For those of a gruesome persuasion, the full excavation report has been lodged with the ADS. Field archaeologists are advised to wear protective clothing including goggles and, where possible, shields when excavating graves of this period.

Professor Hannover is sincerely missed and a monograph of papers in her honour is scheduled for publication next year.”

… it got better.

Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
3 days ago
reply
ridingsloth
3 days ago
Identify theft or necromancy!
Share this story
Delete

rantingauthor replied to your photo “geekgirlsmash: @nudityandnerdery , you’re actually claiming...

1 Share
rantingauthor replied to your photo “geekgirlsmash: @nudityandnerdery , you’re actually claiming to exist?…”
according to the new version of D&D bisexuals get invisibility as a racial trait. Unfortunately it’s the NPCs who decide when you get to use it :/

Yeah. On the other hand, if anyone casts Detect Alignment on us, they have to make a Wisdom check to understand the results.

It’s not a difficult check, and yet some people botch it so badly…

Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
3 days ago
reply
Share this story
Delete

May you be fortunate enough to live in subtle times

1 Share

Comic

Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
11 days ago
reply
Share this story
Delete

Interferometry

2 Comments and 8 Shares
It's important to note that while the effective size of the dog can be arbitrarily large, it's not any more of a good dog than the two original dogs.
Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
18 days ago
reply
An arbitrarily larger dog won't fetch a stick from further away, but it will bring back a tree instead.
Share this story
Delete
1 public comment
alt_text_bot
18 days ago
reply
It's important to note that while the effective size of the dog can be arbitrarily large, it's not any more of a good dog than the two original dogs.

Levittown to Lebensraum

1 Share

Comic

Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
33 days ago
reply
Share this story
Delete

Building A House, Building a Cell

1 Comment

I’ve been thinking (for a long time now!) about how to explain to people outside of the field how odd drug discovery really is. And that comes down to explaining how odd things are inside a living cell.

They’re very odd indeed. This has been brought home to me, yet again, by a recent deep dive into the literature on a particular cellular pathway – a complex one, to be sure, but one that illustrates just how multileveled these things have gotten over the last few billion years of tinkering. Here, then, is an attempt at describing the construction of a house, as if it were being done by the processes that take place inside the cell.

First, the tools. There are hammers and saws and power tools of all kinds, of course, but they behave differently than you’re used to. As they do inside the cell, they float and wander around to find their places and to do their jobs. Some of the hammers have screwdrivers or saw blades poking out of the back of their handles – if the hammer end senses a nail within range, it will start pounding away, and likewise the saw blade spins up to full activity if it sees a piece of wood with the appropriate “Cut here” mark on it. There are dozens of such marks, maybe hundreds (nobody knows for sure), and some saws respond to several of them, while others only seem to care about one. What makes these marks? Various colored pencils wandering about the construction site – they seem to sense patterns in the wood grain, or particular arrangements of boards, that make them leave their individual marks. Looking closely, some of these are also marking each other, if they happen to come within range.

The hammers are odd in other ways. Some hammers whack onto other types of hammer if they see them, and this can lead to the second hammer suddenly changing into a different variety – claw, roofing, tack. Or it might hit another hammer and have it then break into two smaller hammers, or a shower of nails, or a hammer and a handful of colored pencils. Sometimes you’ll see two or three of these smaller tools get screwed back together by various sorts of wandering screwdrivers or wood-glue dispensers, a group of apparently unrelated tools fitting together into something new whose functions can only be guessed at.

But the house is getting built by these weird things. Off in the middle of the construction site there’s a blueprint room, with little page-flipping devices whipping the various plan documents back and forth in complicated patterns. Pages somehow copy themselves when they get into the right orientation, and these pages float up, crumple themselves, and harden into templates that can interact with all the tools around them. There’s some sort of odd plastic around the blueprint room – some of the tools and plan documents seem to be able to shimmy through it, and some can’t. In fact, there are several kinds of these plastic dividers, you realize, oddly shaped and moving around, and they seem to be part of what sorts the various tools into the right places on the site. The entire house site has a big covering around it as well, with deliveries coming up to it from outside and somehow squirting, wiggling, and hopping through in various places.

Back closer to the blueprint room, there are all sorts of little tool foundries that pick up on the crumpled plan-document things, spitting out new screwdriver-saws, hammer-screws, sander-sprayers, and other oddities. The only reason that the place isn’t nostril-deep in such things is that the more worn examples of the various tools are themselves getting marked on by colored pencil-bearing tools in turn, ones that somehow sense the scuff marks, dulled saw blades, or rattling noises, and once such tools get marked, they get red ribbons stuck onto them in various places and get pulled, ribbon-first, into grinding waste disposal machines.

These, on close inspection, are made up of lots of saws, hammers, and so on, arranged in circles, and various small tool pieces come flying out the back ends of these things, aimed at the tool foundries that are cranking out new versions. In fact, everything seems to be made out of something else. Combinations of screwdrivers, planes, grinding wheels, nail guns, glue dispensers and all sorts of other devices are constantly assembling and coming apart again, and somehow they encounter piles of boards, connectors and nails, whirl around in dizzying patterns, and move on, leaving behind complete joists and assemblies. The scent of freshly cut wood attracts drywall-installing assemblies and shingle-attachers, themselves made up out of bizarre arrays of smaller tools strung together, and they in turn leave completed work behind them. Wood frames that have had drywall show up on one side of them seem to be attractive to brick and siding devices, more tools made out of tools, which come along to them and crawl up and sideways, laying down finished materials as they go.

When you look closely at the bricks, you find that they’re made up of tiny latticework of nails and screws, stuck together. The siding is assembled from smaller parts, too – pieces of it that were left over from the installation devices are getting red-ribboned and hauled off to be recycled. Everything’s getting repurposed all the time. Tools are materials; materials are tools. It’s hard to tell what’s being built and what’s being torn down, or what’s being worked on versus what’s doing the work, but a house is being built, remodeled, and maintained somehow in this buzzing cloud.

Looking down the street, you realize that there are hundreds, thousands, millions of similar construction sites and buildings, of all different shapes and sizes, stretching off into the distant hills. It’s where you live. It’s where we all live. It’s living, itself.

Read the whole story
rclatterbuck
52 days ago
reply
This is the biosciences equivalent of a computer programmer realizing that machine code is data and ought to be treated as such.
Share this story
Delete
Next Page of Stories