Archive for the 'Mysterious News' Category

If you think your mind is safe, think again…

Is this research the stuff of nightmares, or the stuff of future ways to understand each other better?


“Although the technology still has some way to go, early work reveals that, in the not too distant future, we may be able to send pictures with our thoughts.”





Scientists Have Invented a Mind-Reading Machine That Visualises Your Thoughts


“If you think your mind is the only safe place left for all your secrets, think again, because scientists are making real steps towards reading your thoughts and putting them on a screen for everyone to see.


A team from the University of Oregon has built a system that can read people’s thoughts via brain scans, and reconstruct the faces they were visualising in their heads. As you’ll soon see, the results were pretty damn creepy.


“We can take someone’s memory – which is typically something internal and private – and we can pull it out from their brains,” one of the team, neuroscientist Brice Kuhl, told Brian Resnick at Vox.


Here’s how it works. The researchers selected 23 volunteers, and compiled a set of 1,000 colour photos of random people’s faces. The volunteers were shown these pictures while hooked up to an fMRI machine, which detects subtle changes in the blood flow of the brain to measure their neurological activity.


Also hooked up to the fMRI machine is an artificial intelligence program that reads the brain activity of the participants, while taking in a mathematical description of each face they were exposed to in real time. The researchers assigned 300 numbers to certain physical features on the faces to help the AI ‘see’ them as code.


Basically, this first phase was a training session for the AI – it needed to learn how certain bursts of neurological activity correlated to certain physical features on the faces…”


For the rest, click here.


The Comet Cometh?

Some thing are better left in the sky where they belong…


From Ancient Origins,


The Comet that Changed Civilization – And May Do Again




“On 30 September this year the first human spacecraft ever to orbit a comet was deliberately crashed onto its surface in order to get the closest possible pictures of the enigmatic celestial body. This will end its mission that began when the vessel was launched over twelve years ago. During the past two years the European Space Agency’s Rosetta probe has been circling the comet millions of miles from Earth, making unprecedented close-range observations of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko (named after the two astronomers who discovered it).


One of the spacecraft’s most significant accomplishments is to have taken readings of the comet’s makeup, determining that it contains some of the basic building blocks of life. Cometary impacts, it seems, may have helped start life on Earth. But comets, such as the focus of the Rosetta mission, have also posed threats to earthly life. 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko is around two and a half miles across; if it hit the Earth— which thankfully it won’t— it could put an end to civilization as we know it. A comet just 500 feet in diameter is believed to have caused the Tunguska event of 1908, when it exploded over a remote area of Siberia with the force of a fifteen megaton bomb, flattening 1000 square miles of forest. But the Tunguska comet was miniscule compared to one, estimated to have been around ten miles wide, which almost collided with our planet three and a half thousand years ago…”


For the rest, click here.


P.S. Our friends over at the Long Now Foundation created something amazing called the Rosetta Disk – and here’s something that not very many people know: The Rosetta Disk hitched a ride on the Rosetta probe. Learn more about this adventure here.




But it was not the very first disk. That one is in space. In 2004 the Rosetta Space Probe was launched by the European Space Agency. This small craft was created to land on a comet in 2014. Before it blasted off, the ESA contacted us because we share names. They asked if we’d like to mount a version of the disk on their probe. Of course we would! We had manufactured a pure nickel disc with a subset of 6,000 pages of language translations, which was mounted on the payload section of the probe


Ancient Egyptian Stories Will Be Published in English for the First Time

Pretty much the best news ever…






Ancient Egyptian Stories Will Be Published in English for the First Time


Translated from hieroglyphics on monuments, tombs and papyri, the book will present tales few outside of academia have read


By Jason Daley


“While people may view inscriptions in Greek or Latin as pretty, they still recognize their merit as text. Indeed, writings from ancient Greece and Rome are revered and considered classics of Western literature. Egyptian hieroglyphics, however, are often seen as mere decoration. Sometimes, the characters are literally used as wallpaper.


One reason is that schoolchildren and classicists alike have read Greek and Latin widely for centuries. But hieroglyphics and the stories they tell have remained accessible only to a handful of trained scholars. That’s one reason Penguin Classics has published Writings from Ancient Egypt in Great Britain (it will be available in the US in January), the first literary English translation of some of the texts that cover thousands of square feet of monuments and tomb walls.


Egyptologist Toby Wilkinson, a fellow of Clare College at Cambridge University, tells Dalya Alberge at The Guardian that the ancient Egyptian writing is just as compelling and layered as those written by the Romans. “What will surprise people are the insights behind the well-known facade of ancient Egypt, behind the image that everyone has of the pharaohs, Tutankhamun’s mask and the pyramids,” Wilkinson says…”


Read more here.


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