Mr. Scruffy

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About Mr. Scruffy

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  1. In best old greek manner i shall reply nothing but: ´Please, continue.´
  2. Nice fleshing out. Like it. Sound very plausible. I suspect the idea being something like currency, but, please, keep it coming... The idea of the animal pictures being sort of a banner of family-tribes occured to me as well - just after i had written the posts above. It makes more sense, since it would identify the receiver of goods, not the goods themselves - those could be identified by looking at them. So, you´d put your goat ´sold´ to the fishing tribe under the fish-depiction and the fish, ´sold´ to the goat-ranchers under the goat-depiction.
  3. I guess it´s not progressing linear. But if its accelerating at the rate described, we would be right before ´touchdown´... maybe like 10 years away, i´d guess.
  4. Wow - if the two stars take 13 minutes for an orbit and lose more then 20 seconds of that in less than a year - we might be in for a good show in some 3,000 years (since they are 3,000 LY away)... No, wait, ahem, actually, there is currently only one star there, already, right? They have already merged some 3,000 years ago... (if this will lead to a merger, that is) We are in for good show pretty soon, then...
  5. Regarding infrared sensors: I figure those are also used on automatic doors, right? I know, you wont believe me, but those work really bad for me. When i walk towards one, i actually have to stop for a second in front them, to make them react on me (i have actually mananged to run into the glass doors before). On the expo2000 in Hannover they also an infrared camera and a monitor showing the picture. I stood between two of my friends - and was depicted as some ghostly imagine far less contured than my buddies. I felt like a vampire looking into a mirror or something... So maybe i should start another career? ;P
  6. I know (i am half-serious - it´s a crazy idea): Those of you who have kids - little kids - let´s tell them, that ´the face´ (or the man, or whatever you call it) on the moon is [maybe] Armstrong smiling at us, and before he went there, it just wasnt there [if you remember your dad´s story, right]... (nice little kids story - they figure the truth, when time comes, for sure- just to keep the name running)
  7. This is most miraculous, as nothing would be as bond-establishing towards the protagonist, than living throught a lot-search with him/her - i mean: we probably all know, how tense and desperate that can make you (esp- when you have to stay under-cover). I bet, you could make a whole f-ing movie about it. The gangster flee into some flat-house, under-covers follow, but dont find a lot (and cant park second rough, miami vice style, cause then everybody would know they´re police). So they keep driving and driving. Two plot-strings: One with the gangsters, one with the police-guys in the car. The really avantgarde climax comes, when you figure, they will actually never meet in the end - the police guys call it off for the day, finally... hahaha. 30 min short-movie. Hillarious, i tell you. The main tension is wether the policeman will have a fight with each other first over how to park, or the gangsters over how to divide the loot. For that purpose, two gangsters, two policemen...
  8. I already wrote a bit in the kerbal thread under indie games...
  9. The powder either works, or any fly will trigger the alarm. So i guess, for most systems, it will work. Here´s what i learned from Hollywood: - Whenever i am in doubt about the intentions of a person, i try to listen very hard for his musical score... - Always wear the same color uniform as your boss - or else you´ll die in the next 10 minutes, somehow. - Even ´mirrored´ instances of the same ship (aka ´Enterprise´) will have different colors of laser beams: Blue for the good guys and red for the baddies. If you are color-blind, you can always go by the sound the lasers make in vacuum, alternatively. - Most extra-solar planets resemble one of the planets in our solar system. Right down to shapes of continents. - Men on important missions neither eat, sleep or use the loo - ever. - No problems is unsolvable within 150 minutes of dedicated, mindless action. - Murderers are free to go - as long as they accompany their felony with a cool taunt (extra points for sunglasses). - If in doubt, blow things up some more. - Bullets are produced within handweapons, depending on charma and demand, during fire-fights. - Bullets shot by baddies are usually harmless (except when goodie is wearing wrong uniform, see above), unless for otherwise unimportant lovers of protagonists, while bullets shot by goodies have a spot-on accuracy, unless these goodies are four hobo-freaks in a black van. - British secret service agents stay young through 50 years of cold war and beyond. - People repeat the other side´s name when answering the phone, on a regular basis. - People bring forth every word exactly like they intent to, and never mess up a sentence. - Any condition will only last one scene. E.g. you can get drunk till your eyes move no more, but that´ll be gone in 5 minutes (´Indy I´ - the girl at the bar in tibet). - In case of a nuclear attack, hide in a fridge for a fun ride (Indy IV).
  10. I only quoted (for the most part). And about Gobekli Tepe: Well, whenever one of these sites are found and date back to somewhere very old, the usual explanation is ´cult´ or ´religion´. I dont buy that, frankly. To me it makes much more sense as a trading place. And considering the fact, that the first grain crops were bred around that area and around that time, the story i am telling above makes a lot of sense, doesnt it. The site is usually subject to the discourse wether cities or religion came first - or something like that. It shows, how interlocked it all was, really. The thing i draw from it is, that the beginning of the neolithicum may not by caused by some incidental discovery, that you could of stationary crop-fields (you have reoccuring natural crops, too), but rather by the attempt to actively move ressources (the crop) to a trading place and thereby gain a very tangible advantage. First directly by being able to access all sorts of contemporary goods easily, without much footwalk, simply by having the fields next to trading place. Then, because your particular crop is quite useful for others, indirectly over time, a certain power over that trading place is established. Some people might choose to go trade somewhere else if you try to impose some rules at the trading place (easy for you, because you live there), but because you trade your grain there, and only there, it´s not like moving the centre of trade was easy anymore. The thing developes persistance. Being the only group able to choose where their ressource is produced, is what made everyone else eventually copy it. The only way to escape the power of the local farmers was to go start your own thing, in the very same manner as they did, somewhere else. The first attempts to copy the farmers at the current place led to huge rivalries around the centre of trade: Everybody wanted their field to be closest to it and too much grain was produced, while everyone lacked berries and meat. In the end, they started killing each other over it. Until someone said: Enough! And buried the whole thing and the garden was lost. It puts a bunch of sequences into the right place. Another example is that specialisation probably occured before urbanization. And that makes sense, too: Just imagine being with a bunch of hunter/gatherers and in the same area you occasionally meet others of your kind. What is more likely: That everyone has traps, a fishing rot, a net, several spears and bows... or that one family-tribe specialized on using bows in the woods, while the other goes fishing, and they meet from to time to to trade? So, specialization was not formed within the ancient societies first, but the first ancient socities originated from specilization, instead. Via trade on a common marketplace. If you think about it, it´s not surprising really, considering that in germany, this was still going on during the middle-ages, basically. Frankfurt means ´free, shallow passage over a river´ and it being a marketplace was as important to its foundation as it is today. Only before agriculture, there was neither reason nor really the ability to settle right next to that marketplace. Crop cultivation changed all that - but wouldnt have, without the marketplaces, first. They are the condensation cores of the first cities and agriculture is their water. Agriculture made the land close to the centre of trade incredibly valuable. Heck, the concept of possessing land itself probably originated here. And when before agriculture someone would try to hinder passage to the center, it could just be moved. Not anymore. More or less suddenly you had a caste of farmers dwelling around this centre and by that, they also controlled the centre itself and transportation to it. Not before too long, these would call themselves the city of X or the kingdom of Y. But that is only what i make of it. But i can imagine it so vividely, that i´d ask you to challange me on it. I dont know how much it resembles official theory. But if it does, why isnt Tepe interpretated as a marketplace, then? Animal depictions found on pillars? Not everything older than 5000 years has to be an altair of sacrifice - these pictures could instead tell people, where to sell/store what. Does that make sense? Or do people sacrifice burgers at McD, just because they are depicted everywhere? Maybe they also had ´offline´-deals, sort of, putting things there for someone to pick them up later - so you put your goat under the goat carving and your chicken under the chicken-head. Must have been hard to agree on times back then. ´What about theft?´, you i hear you say? Well, who´d steal it? There´s like 5 family-tribes roaming the county-sized area - and you know them all ; one was founded by your son - hopefully his fishing endeavours will bear fruit this moon... your hunting went bad and he´d surely help you out (uhh, we got ´spread of risk´, here? See? Makes sense? ;P ). Can´t wait to see him at the centre. Maybe his wife will give birth during the full moon - if she´s not yet, you´ll probably all stay there until she does... See- i could probably write a book about this scenario, and i think it would sound pretty plausible. I wouldnt want to try that with, say, the building of the Gizeh Pyramids. So, in conclusion (finally): The only mystery about Tepe is really, why it is a mystery. It´s purpose is quite obvious for its timeframe. It´s an amazing site none-the-less and a potential candidate for the origin of the Eden-story. But outside that, it´s more revealing than mystifying, imho. PS ;P : Can you imagine the social upheaval those farmers have brought? So they come and settle next to the marketplace and seed their crop. Some others see, how easy that is (once it got easy, that is) and copy it. Once they have a sufficient mass, they start to dominate the place together. They might have even cartellized (manipulated the market). With their success, more and more people start doing the same. Now two possibilities arise, both leading to the same result: Either there is direct conflict between the newcomers, further outside, and the established more inwards, like the later trying to deny access to the former, or the former starting to trade directly at another, too close, place, or the class grows beyond its sustainability, the grain price drops below that of menure and the ruling class in plunged into despair with everyone trying to hold on to it and pushing the others out, in persue of the previous state. Anyways success of the few will have its followers and together they will be too many at some point to sustain it. Hefty social conflict is the result and in one way or the other this lead to the abandoning of Tepe. But for a brief time, farmers were the bankers of their time. Too bad for them, that this occured at a rather early phase in the evolution of human society...
  11. Oh no Lancer, i couldnt have done that. To get me to the city-hall, they had prepared something special: First, you gotta know, that i am mortally afraid of heights. I mean, it´s really bad for me. So what they did is to give me a gift-certificate for a ballon-ride, saying the ballon would land on our yard within an hour or so. My knees became real jelly and i was seriously contemplating to either fight my fears once and for all on this opportunity (´to be or not to be!´) or how to weasel my way out of this, without being too rude (in my experience, people with no fear-of-height have problems understanding just how bad it can be). Well, instead of a ballon, they had prepared a cart, to hang behind a bicycle, with a lot of ballons (30 probably) strapped to it and lots of little shot-bottles put inside. That was my ballon-ride. And it went straight to the city-hall, where they had placed saw-dust and the toothbrush. And that´s when i found out, what they were upto. To refuse, would have been an eclat, ruining the whole day for everyone and would have brand-marked me as ´no fun´ for all eternity. And the relief of not actually ending up hundreds of meters above the ground (+ alcohol in the morning) made it actually sort of easy for me, to follow suit. EDIT: Another aspect was, that my gf at the time was an american and i took a little pride in showing her german traditions. She was having a lot of fun, too, with it, i think. And today, whenever i pass the city-hall of our village, i always think back of it, and smile. The cart, my gf the time riding the bike, my bro walking next to it, and me sitting inside, in proper ballon-ride-attire. The stairs werent all that big, really.
  12. So, in germany there is this tradition that if you turn 30 before being a married man, you have to sweep the stairs of the city-hall (Rathaus), until a virgin would free you with a kiss. In my clique i turned 30 last. Only one of them actually got married. No one was made to sweep - except me. And they gave me a toothbrush, too, to do it! It must be real fun to force tradition that you have already passed on, on someone else! It was fun though - of course there was lots to drink and all that... But in the end they had to bring up the neighbors daughter (who was just 13 or so back then) to ´liberate´ me (on the cheek, of course!). My gf at the time was not a virgin (and thinking about it, i may have been even more embarrassed if she had ´liberated´ me). Yeah, anyways, happy (belated) 30th, Alex!
  13. These drone attacks... these people must feel like they are being attacked by aliens. That will help fighting terrorism, for sure (i am being sarcastic here), double-tap or not!
  14. About Atlantis. It´s a subject that always fascinaited me. There´s only one real source on it: Socrates´ dialogues with Critias and Timaeus as in the appedix of Plato´s ´republic´: Start reading between mark 108 & 109 (grey letters on the right side). A couple of things to note, according to it: - The date: The war of the atlanteans was waged 9000 years before the author´s time. - The size: The island of atlantis was bigger than ´libya and asia´. Now, that is not taken to literally, esp. concerning asia, as its size was not known back then. We´ll have to read that as ´the near east´ in modern terms, i guess. Anyways, it´s not some petty island - it´s quite big. - The location: Explicitely outside the pillars of heracles (the straits of gibraltar). Those three alone rule out anything within the med. Gosh, there is a whole paragraph stating its not in the med, but in the ´true sea´. I say this, because people always come up with some tiny med-islands as possible atlantis. But if you take this only source about it, it follows that: If it´s in the med, it´s not atlantis, and there is nothing to base a claim it was on. Then: - Atlantis, the island/continent, had baths for its people, remarkably roofed ones for the winter and open ones for the summer. That tells us a lot: Temperate climate. - It was furtile enough to feed even the biggest of land animals - elephants. Now, it´s been awhile since elephant-like beings roamed temperate climates... Say some 11,000 years ago today? Mammoths, perhaps? - The city itself was located on the east coast and in a valley roughly 600km (N-S) to 400km (E-W) in size, surrounded by a high mountain range, to the north, west and south. The land was government by ten kings and featured channels for irrigation. The city was composed of altering rings of water and land. On the middle-island was the palace of Poseidon, made from the fabeled Oricalchum. One ring of land, measuring roughly 10km in circumverence, was used as a racing court for horses. The city was walled. There is much more info in the text - that´s just what i recall. There´s also an interesting description of erosion in greece, which gives it a lot of credibility, from an ex-environmental student´s pov. EDIT: 60,000 lots with 10x10 stadia (~200m) each. That´s 4*60,000 km² = 240,000km². The british main island (just for comparison!) has 219,331 km², according to wiki. EDIT2: ´By such reflections and by the continuance in them of a divine nature, the qualities which we have described grew and increased among them; but when the divine portion began to fade away, and became diluted too often and too much with the mortal admixture, and the human nature got the upper hand, they then, being unable to bear their fortune, behaved unseemly, and to him who had an eye to see, grew visibly debased, for they were losing the fairest of their precious gifts; but to those who had no eye to see the true happiness, they appeared glorious and blessed at the very time when they were full of avarice and unrighteous power.´ Sounds familiar.
  15. The treasure island in nova scotia, the so called ´money-pit´, is really interesting. But i think one would first of the find that ´treasure´ to ask who put it there... To add to that list, the underwater ´castle´ is southern japan. Yonigami or what it´s called. Generals means of transporting huge blocks (and doing construction with them) of stone (upto 100tons) without machinery, pretty much worldwide. Yes, very interesting site, also. I´d figure this was a trading place, actually. Here´s my take on it: So back then, everybody used to be part of a hunter/gatherer tribal family sort of thing. Several of these ´operated´ in the region and at some point, they started to exchange, say 3 rabbits for a goat and a cloth full of berries. They then made this a habit (let´s meet every full moon, here again, to trade) and other family-tribes caught wind of it and participated at what was probably the world´s first regional market. Then something remarkable happenend: Not only did the opportunity to trade lead to speacialization (we go fishing all month, and trade half the fish for other stuff here at full moon...), but one group of these emergent speacialists figured, that they could save much effort, if they could make their crop of choise grow right next to this trade-place. They started experimenting with grain-crops, first just seeding it close to the site, and later breeding it to their needs. This is the dawn of the neolithicum. These first farmers of course settled right next to their fields and the trading place. By this, they established sort of a dominance over the place. Maybe they set up conditions for other in order to be allowed to trade there, like a tariff for passage or a certain minimum ammount of grain they´d have to trade for. Or, if the site also served as a storage (under ground cooling), they maybe controlled it. Anyways, this first conflict between farmers and the other types of ´agriculture´ (ranching, hunting, gathering), originating from the need of the former to stay local (´home´ - it would be interesting to know where this word comes from - cause it only makes a sense from here on), led to the site getting burried -by men- under a deep layer of soil. I wonder: Is this the site of Eden? EDIT: Pumapunku - never heard of it. So i checked the Wiki. It says, that it´s from roughly 500AD, and does not mention any special sort of stone. Instead it says it was built with sandstone from quarries about 10km away, and andesite (whatever that is) from ~90km away. Considering, that the largest block weighs more than 130 metric tons, that is still very impressive. Most remarkable is the technique in which the elemental blocks are joined together. It´s like some sort of super-lego. I am inclined to doubt carving for some of them, as the method of making these joints. They seem like cast (from forms) - very much like concrete. But how do you cast stone? Look at these - dont they remind you of modern concrete house foundations: