6 August 2009, JellyBean @ 9:03 am

James Randerson’s Science blog on The Guardian website this week talked about the Antikythera clockwork computer. New research seems to indicate that the device may be even older than previously thought. The question then emerges: Could it have come from an advanced alien civilization?

antikythera-fragment“New detective work suggests that the ancient mechanism for simulating planetary motions and predicting lunar eclipses was built in the 2nd century BC.

I thought my capacity for sheer jaw-dropping amazement at the Antikythera mechanism had been well and truly exhausted – until last night. The puzzling instrument is a clockwork computer from ancient Greece that used a fiendishly complex assembly of meshed cogs to simulate the movement of the planets, predict lunar eclipses and indicate the dates of major sporting events.

The clockwork technology in the device was already known to be centuries ahead of its time, but new evidence suggests that the enigmatic machine is even older than scientists had realised. “It is the most important scientific artefact known from the ancient world,” said Jo Marchant, who has written a compelling book on the find called Decoding the Heavens. “There’s nothing else like it for a thousand years afterwards.””

Read the whole article HERE

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