Archaeology

The Clovis people, Paleo-Indians whose tools were known for their distinctive 'fluted' points, were once thought to be the original settlers of North America about 13,000 years ago.    The name originates not from the 5th century Frankish king but rather the town in New Mexico where the stone projectile points created by their distinctive percussion and pressure flaking techniques were first discovered.
Tsunamis are big news for the last few days and there may be an ancient reason along with a current one.  A group of researchers are saying a tsunami likely destroyed the fabled lost city of Atlantis...and it is underneath mud flats in southern Spain. 

The team's findings are the subject of "Finding Atlantis," a National Geographic Channel special that aired this weekend (and you can watch again tomorrow evening).
A group of German archaeologists have set off to find a priceless ancient treasure and I'd rather they not get it.    Sounds like the plot of "Raiders of the Lost Ark" right?

As smashing as I look in a Stetson fedora, the reality involves no Nazis or theological death rays, instead it involves 2,156 gold tablets on which the Maya recorded their laws, which may be buried in Guatemala's Lake Izabal.  But the reality does involve a treasure map, which is always fun.  

Mayan expert Joachim Rittsteig claims to have thoroughly studied the Dresden Codex, a pre-Columbian Maya book which contains most of what we know about Mayan Culture, and says it details the location of this treasure.
If you've been to Bible study classes, you know the story of Jericho.   Actually, if you're an atheist you may know it even better, since on quizzes atheists seem to know The Bible better than many religious people.  In the story, Joshua, successor to Moses, led the Jews across the Jordan to what would be their land.   Jericho was clearly sitting on it so using trumpets for seven days and finally their voices they were able to take out the walls of the city and kill most everyone inside.

Wait until the Mythbusters try and tackle that one.
  
While many in America were happy about the collapse of the Mubarak government, they were likely happy for the wrong reasons.   Optimists, it is said, are people who do not learn from experience and the toppling of a dictator in Egypt looks a lot more like Iran in 1979 than it does America in 1776.

But regardless of the irrational optimism of many in the political spectrum, plenty of scientists are going to be happy that protesters have now turned their sights on Zawi Hawass, a man who could only have gotten his job in a dictatorship and wielded his position just like one.
An artificial big toe found attached to the foot of an ancient Egyptian mummy is the world's oldest prosthetic.  At least for now.   It predates the previous earliest known practical prosthesis , the Roman Capula Leg, by several hundred years.

It wasn't simply cosmetic.   The two toes, a three-part wood and leather artifact housed in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, and the Greville Chester artificial toe on display in the British Museum, also helped their toeless owners walk like Egyptians.
Despite the various claims surrounding the idea of alien visitation in the past, one of the primary arguments has been the creation of immense structures in the past that have been argued as being impossible to create without sophisticated modern technologies.  More to the point, the argument even suggests that it would take quite advanced technologies (even beyond our abilities today), to produce such construction projects.

Invariably the size of the blocks is mentioned (on the order of several tons to several hundred tons), as well as the issue of moving them, positioning them, and of course the precision involved in their placement.
Well, we now know what a Cargo Cult is, and we are now up to date on the recent research into the Nasca Lines. What I haven’t brought you completely up to date on is the actual Ancient Alien Theory explanation of the Nazca lines. The History Channel sums it up pretty succinctly:

“The Nazca Lines

 

Etched into a high plateau in Peru’s Nazca Desert, a series of ancient designs stretching more than 50 miles has baffled archaeologists for decades. Along with simple lines and geometric shapes, they include drawings of animals, birds and humans, some measuring more than 600 feet across.
In ancient times, when things went wrong in battle or the economy, people blamed leaders (if they didn't like them) or the Gods (if they liked the leaders) but maybe they should have blamed global warming.   Errr, and cooling.

A new study in Science uses the same techniques as dendrochronology to map the rise and fall of empires and cultures as it was recorded in tree rings - and then to weather conditions.
A cave inside some remote mountains of Armenia contain what is being called the oldest winery yet discovered, dating back to around 4,100 B.C., 1,000 years earlier than previous finds.

The discovery was made in the same mysterious Armenian cave complex where ancient leather shoe was found last summer

This is the oldest complete wine production facility ever found, including grape seeds, withered grape vines, remains of pressed grapes, a rudimentary wine press, a clay vat apparently used for fermentation, wine-soaked potsherds, and even a cup and drinking bowl.