A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Posts Tagged ‘wales

[BLOG] Some Saturday links

  • Bad Astronomy notes the mystery of distant active galaxy SDSS J163909+282447.1, with a supermassive black hole but few stars.
  • Centauri Dreams shares a proposal from Robert Buckalew for craft to engage in planned panspermia, seeding life across the galaxy.
  • The Crux looks at the theremin and the life of its creator, Leon Theremin.
  • D-Brief notes that termites cannibalize their dead, for the good of the community.
  • Dangerous Minds looks at William Burroughs’ Blade Runner, an adaptation of a 1979 science fiction novel by Alan Nourse.
  • Bruce Dorminey notes a new study explaining how the Milky Way Galaxy, and the rest of the Local Group, was heavily influenced by its birth environment.
  • JSTOR Daily looks at why the Chernobyl control room is now open for tourists.
  • Dale Campos at Lawyers. Guns and Money looks at the effects of inequality on support for right-wing politics.
  • James Butler at the LRB Blog looks at the decay and transformation of British politics, with Keith Vaz and Brexit.
  • Marginal Revolution shares a paper explaining why queens are more warlike than kings.
  • Omar G. Encarnación at the NYR Daily looks at how Spain has made reparations to LGBTQ people for past homophobia. Why should the United States not do the same?
  • Corey S. Powell at Out There shares his interview with physicist Sean Carroll on the reality of the Many Worlds Theory. There may be endless copies of each of us out there. (Where?)
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel explains why 5G is almost certainly safe for humans.
  • Strange Company shares a newspaper clipping reporting on a haunting in Wales’ Plas Mawr castle.
  • Frank Jacobs at Strange Maps looks at all the different names for Africa throughout the years.
  • The Volokh Conspiracy considers, in the case of the disposal of eastern Oklahoma, whether federal Indian law should be textualist. (They argue against.)
  • Window on Eurasia notes the interest of the government of Ukraine in supporting Ukrainians and other minorities in Russia.
  • Arnold Zwicky looks at syntax on signs for Sloppy Joe’s.

[BLOG] Some Wednesday links

  • Anthropology.net reports on the discovery of footprints of a Neanderthal band in Le Rozel, Normandy, revealing much about that group’s social structure.
  • Bad Astronomer’s Phil Plait explains why standing at the foot of a cliff on Mars during local spring can be dangerous.
  • Centauri Dreams shares a suggestion that the lakes of Titan might be product of subterranean explosions.
  • Chris Bertram at Crooked Timber considers how, and when, anger should be considered and legitimated in discussions of politics.
  • The Crux looks at the cement mixed successfully in microgravity on the ISS, as a construction material of the future.
  • D-Brief looks at what steps space agencies are considering to avoid causing harm to extraterrestrial life.
  • The Dragon’s Tales notes new evidence that the Anthropocene, properly understood, actually began four thousand years ago.
  • Jonathan Wynn writes at the Everyday Sociology Blog about how many American universities have become as much lifestyle centres as educational communities.
  • Far Outliers reports on how, in the 13th century, the cultural differences of Wales from the English–including the Welsh tradition of partible inheritance–caused great instability.
  • This io9 interview with the creators of the brilliant series The Wicked and the Divine is a must-read.
  • JSTOR Daily looks at a paper considering how teachers of German should engage with the concept of Oktoberfest.
  • Language Hat looks at a new study examining the idea of different languages being more efficient than others. (They are not, it turns out.)
  • Language Log looks at the history of translating classics of Chinese literature into Manchu and Mongolian.
  • Erik Loomis considers the problems the collapse of local journalism now will cause for later historians trying to do research in the foreseeable future.
  • Marginal Revolution reports on research suggesting that markets do not corrupt human morality.
  • Neuroskeptic looks in more detail at the interesting, and disturbing, organized patterns emitted by organoids built using human brain cells.
  • Stephen Baker at The Numerati writes, with photos, about what he saw in China while doing book research. (Shenzhen looks cool.)
  • The NYR Daily notes the import of the working trip of Susan Sontag to Sarajevo in 1993, while that city was under siege.
  • Robert Picardo at the Planetary Society Blog shares a vintage letter from Roddenberry encouraging Star Trek fans to engage with the Society.
  • Noel Maurer at The Power and the Money looks at the economy of Argentina in a pre-election panic.
  • Strange Company looks at the life of Molly Morgan, a British convict who prospered in her exile to Australia.
  • Window on Eurasia notes that, in 1939, many Soviet citizens recognized the import of the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact; they knew their empire would expand.
  • Arnold Zwicky looks at the treatment of cavemen, as subjects and providers of education, in pop culture.

[BLOG] Some Friday links

  • Centauri Dreams notes the astounding precision of the new Habitable Planet Finder telescope.
  • D-Brief notes that the lack of small craters on Pluto and Charon suggests there are not many small bodies in the Kuiper Belt.
  • Far Outliers notes the many and widely varying transliterations of Bengali to English.
  • JSTOR Daily notes the extent to which border walls represent, ultimately, a failure of politics.
  • Language Log examines the emergence of the Germanic languages in the depths of prehistory.
  • Anna Aslanyan at the LRB Blog considers the eternal search for a universal language.
  • Noah Smith shareshis Alternative Green New Deal Plan at his blog, one that depends more on technology and market forces than the original.
  • Mitchell Abidor at the NYR Daily writes about the incisive leftism of journalist Victor Sorge.
  • Out There notes the reality that the worlds of our solar system, and almost certainly other systems, are united by a constant stream of incoming rocks.
  • At the Planetary Society Blog, Emily Lakdawalla examines the data transmitted back by OSIRIS-REx from that probe’s Earth flyby.
  • Starts With A Bang’s Ethan Siegel examines cosmic conditions at the time the solar system formed 4.56 billion or so years ago.
  • Towleroad notes the censorship of many explicitly gay scenes from Bohemian Rhapsody in its Chinese release.
  • Window on Eurasia looks at the many ways in which the social norms of North Caucasian men are converging with those of the average Russian.
  • On St. David’s Day, Arnold Zwicky pays tribute to the daffodil and to the Welsh.

[META] Some blogroll additions

Two links are being added.

  • To the news section, I’m adding the Canadian news website National Observer, which has interesting longer articles analyzing Canadian events. Of their recent articles, I would recommend Lorimer Shenher’s “LGBTQ officers need to pick the right target”, which argues that LGBTQ police officers should step back and consider the import of the police, as an organization, to many queer people.
  • To the blog section, I’m adding Strange Company, a great blog that assembles links of interesting and odd things around the world, in the past and present, and takes the occasional longer look at particular events. This link, examining the history of one Reverend Griffiths who was something of a ghostbuster in 19th century Wales, is a good example of the latter category of post.

Written by Randy McDonald

March 6, 2017 at 2:00 pm

[LINK] “The discovery of medieval Trellech and the plucky amateurs of archaeology”

At The Conversation, Ben Edwards writes about the discovery of the lost medieval Welsh city of Trellech, and the import of its recent rediscovery by an amateur archaeologist.

The tale of how an amateur archaeologist’s hunch led him to uncover a lost medieval town and spend £32,000 of his own money to buy the land, would stand to be the archaeological discovery of any year. On the border between England and Wales, the site of the medieval town of Trellech reveals much about a tumultuous period of history – and how the town came to be lost.

The story begins in 2004, when archaeology graduate Stuart Wilson began his search for this lost medieval town in Monmouthshire, south-east Wales, near where now only a small village bears the name. In the face of scepticism from academic archaeologists, Wilson’s years of work have been vindicated with the discovery of a moated manor house, a round stone tower, ancillary buildings, and a wealth of smaller finds including pottery from the 1200s.

The town could turn out to be one of the largest in medieval Wales, and while there is more work to be done, the evidence is building. The large number of finds – including metalwork, cooking vessels and decorated pottery – point to a large settlement, and are essential in helping archaeologists date the site. What they suggest is a short-lived but intensive period of occupation between the 12th and early 15th centuries, during which the town was founded by the De Clare family as an industrial centre and later destroyed during the Owain Glyndwr rebellion in 1400. This was a period of instability on the Welsh border, with conflict between rival Welsh princes and the English throne. Settlements like Trellech would become the focus of such clashes, culminating in Glyndwr’s rebellion.

What makes the lost city of Trellech so important is its rarity and the quality of its preservation. Most large medieval settlements in England and Wales are still towns and cities to this day. This means archaeological investigations of medieval London or York for example are difficult and expensive, and can only occur piecemeal as urban redevelopment allows excavation of small areas. If Trellech turns out to be an extensive town, it will be a unique and important site. As archaeology is key to understanding the lives of everyday people who are ignored by the histories of the great and the good, sites like Trellech are the only way we gain these insights.

Written by Randy McDonald

January 9, 2017 at 8:45 pm

[BLOG] Some Sunday links

  • blogTO notes the growing concentration of chain stores on lower Ossington.
  • The Broadside Blog’s Caitlin Kelly describes her luck in interviewing a New York City firefighter.
  • Citizen Science Salon reports on a citizen science game intended to fight against Alzheimer’s.
  • Language Hat starts from a report about unsold Welsh-language Scrabble games to talk about the wider position of the Welsh language.
  • Lawyers, Guns and Money shares the astounding news leaked about Donald Trump’s billion-dollar losses.
  • Marginal Revolution links to a psychology paper examining the perception of atheists as narcissistic.
  • Towleroad reports on the informative reality television series of the United States’ gay ambassador to Denmark.
  • Window on Eurasia notes how Russia’s war in Aleppo echoes past conflicts in Chechnya and Afghanistan, and examines the position of Russia’s border regions.

[NEWS] Some Wednesday links

  • Bloomberg notes Ireland’s huge unexpected recent reported growth, looks at the deindustrialization of Israel, observes Deutsche Bank’s need to search for wealth abroad, looks at the demographic imperatives that may keep healthy Japanese working until they are 80, notes the slipping ANC grip on Pretoria and looks at the rise of anti-Muslim Pauline Hanson in Australia, and predicts Brexit could kill the London property boom.
  • Bloomberg View calls for calm in the South China Sea.
  • CBC notes some idiot YouTube adventurers who filmed themselves doing stupid, even criminal, things in different American national parks.
  • The Globe and Mail reports on the plans for a test tidal turbine in the Bat of Fundy by 2017.
  • MacLean’s looks at the heckling of a gay musician in Halifax and reports on the civil war in South Sudan.
  • The New York Times looks at the new xenophobia in the east English town of Boston.
  • Open Democracy notes that talk of a working class revolt behind Brexit excludes non-whites, and reports on alienation on the streets of Wales.
  • Wired looks at how some cash-strapped American towns are tearing up roads they cannot afford to maintain.