600 year old mystery manuscript decoded by University of Bedfordshire professor - beds.ac.uk AN award-winning professor from the University has followed in the footsteps of Indiana Jones by cracking the code of a 600 year old manuscript, deemed as ‘the most mysterious’ document in the world. Stephen Bax, Professor of Applied Linguistics, has just become the first professional linguist to crack the code of the Voynich manuscript using an analytical approach. The world-renowned manuscript is full of illustrations of exotic plants, stars, and mysterious human figures, as well as many pages written in an unknown text. Up until now the 15th century cryptic work has baffled scholars, cryptographers and codebreakers who have failed to read a single letter of the script or any word of the text. Over time it has attained an infamous reputation, even featuring in the latest hit computer game Assassin’s Creed, as well as in the Indiana Jones novels, when Indiana decoded the Voynich and used it to find the ‘Philosopher's Stone’. Many grand theories have been proposed. Notes to editor
U.N. Commission Calls for Legalizing Prostitution Worldwide (CNSNews.com) - A report issued by the United Nations-backed Global Commission on HIV and the Law; recommends that nations around the world get rid of “punitive” laws against prostitution – or what it calls “consensual sex work” -- and decriminalize the voluntary use of illegal injection drugs in order to combat the HIV epidemic. The commission, which is made up of 15 former heads of state, legal scholars and HIV/AIDS activists, was convened in 2010 by U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon and is jointly backed by the United Nations Development Programme and UNAIDS – the Joint U.N. Programme on AIDS/HIV. The commission recommends repealing all laws that prohibit “adult consensual sex work,” as well as clearly distinguishing in law and practice between sexual trafficking and prostitution. Specifically, the commission wants to: -- “Decriminalise private and consensual adult sexual behaviours, including same-sex sexual acts and voluntary sex work.” -- “Reform approaches towards drug use. Dr.
The Cities That Live Behind Walls While you're in the area of Carcassonne, take a day trip 180 km east, you will find Aigues-Mortes, or as we can it "Carcassonne on the beach", a walled city rebuildt by Saint Louis in the 13th century, to become the only port in the mediterranean for the kingdom of France in this era, and the embarkation point for two crusades. SExpand It is also one of the first cities with a grid plan, making it look like a medieval New York, with it's streets and avenues crossing neatly. Digital Projects : Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies : The University of Western Australia The Centre supports digital scholarship, proof-of-concept explorations, and innovative new media projects in Medieval and Early Modern Studies. Members of the Centre are involved in cutting-edge research at the intersection of Medieval and Early Modern Studies and digital technologies, from electronic editions of Renaissance plays to interactive maps of the Latin Enlightenment, and beyond. These projects highlight the Centre's commitment to interdisciplinary research collaborations between scholars, libraries, museums, and other cultural heritage institutions in Australasia and abroad. Current CMEMS Digital Projects Beyond Authorship A project to employ innovative methods of quantitative and stylistic analysis typically used for authorship attribution testing, alongside more established bibliographical, literary-critical, and textual methods, to offer new answers to questions about the underlying common patterns and contrasts in plays performed in England between 1576 and 1642.
Long-bearded axe A bearded axe, or Skeggöx (from Old Norse Skegg, beard + öx, axe) refers to various axes, used as a tool and weapon, as early as the 6th century AD. It is most commonly associated with Viking Age Scandinavians. The lower portion of an axe bit is called the "beard" and the cutting edge of the bearded axe extends below the width of the butt to provide a wide cutting surface while keeping the overall weight of the axe low. The hook, or "beard" of the axe would have also been useful in battle, to hook onto things, such as shields or weapons, to pull them out of the defender's grasp. Modern Japanese bearded axe, demonstrating the grip for shaving wood Additionally this design allows the user to grip the haft directly behind the head for planing or shaving wood. Variations of this design are still in use by modern woodworkers and some foresters.
A Rare Look at the Tunnels Under San Francisco In the early ’90s my friends and I used to tape flashlights to the handlebars of our bikes and go riding around in underground storm drain tunnels. There was a whole network of these tunnels under the city that sat empty for most of the year. We would go for miles snaking up and down the sides of the tubes, clapping and yelling to see how far our echoes would carry, eventually popping out in some other part of the city covered in cobwebs and bat guano. When the tubes got too small, we laid down on skateboards and kept going. If we found a flooded part, we taped garbage bags around our legs and crossed our fingers. The overwhelming feeling of adventure was intoxicating. The concept of urban exploration was first given a name in San Francisco in the late ’70s by a group called the Suicide Club. As much of a bummer as that was, there are still a great number of underground spaces to explore around San Francisco.
Digital editions of medieval texts: Opportunities and challenges | CAMPS @ NUI Galway I gave a CAMPS Lab on 23 September 2011 with the title above. I’ve been involved in producing websites and multimedia now since 1997, when I started working as a copy-editor on Microsoft’s Encarta Encyclopedia (in the days when the online Brittanica was our biggest rival, and well before Wikipedia was heard of). I afterwards worked as web project manager, and since then, during my graduate student days and beyond, I’ve been involved in a number of academic digital projects. I wanted to share some reflections on this experience with the CAMPS group. Here are some summary thoughts below. Opportunities in digital humanities If we think of digital humanities simply as people working in humanities and using computers, then it’s already been around for quite a long time (esp. e-mail). Digitisation of existing paper resources.Creation of new online resources.Exploitation of the internet more generally (personal websites, texts and translations, photographs and media). Research: e.g. Challenges
Just how prevalent were Axes, Flails, and other "strange" weapons on the battlefield? : AskHistorians Year 2000 problem The (French) sign reads "3 January 1900" instead of "3 January 2000" The Year 2000 problem (also known as the Y2K problem, the Millennium bug, the Y2K bug, or simply Y2K) was a problem for both digital (computer-related) and non-digital documentation and data storage situations which resulted from the practice of abbreviating a four-digit year to two digits. In 1997, The British Standards Institute (BSI) developed a standard, DISC PD2000-1, which defines "Year 2000 Conformity requirements" as four rules: No valid date will cause any interruption in operations.Calculation of durations between, or the sequence of, pairs of dates will be correct whether any dates are in different centuries.In all interfaces and in all storage, the century must be unambiguous, either specified, or calculable by algorithmYear 2000 must be recognized as a leap year It identifies two problems that may exist in many computer programs. Background Programming problem The need for bit conservation