Category Archives: Genealogy

80,000 year old Siberian girl comes back to ‘Life’….almost.

Make no mistake, at some point in the future we will be able to completely reanimate the human body based on only the smallest fragment of DNA code. That code will be, in my estimation, dumped into a sort of pre-designed template of stem cells and the like that can be manipulated into accepting any and all DNA. That template will then become the basis for reconstructing the exact duplicate of that DNA. The difference, though, in my opinion, will be this: the recovered DNA will be found to have traces of electric current. In my view, that archaic electricity will provide holographic-like directions for repairing and recovering memories and the like, as well as the essence of consciousness itself. Could quantum computers be the next step in processing this amount of information? Could human beings be brought back completely and wholly? I believe so. Could this be another step in that direction? Possibly….

via McMannes

“We’ve known little of the genetic sequences of our precursors, despite having found many examples of their remains: the requirement for two strands in traditional DNA sequencing isn’t much help when we’re usually thankful to get just one. The Max Planck Institute has devised a new, single-strand technique that may very well fill in the complete picture. Binding specific molecules to a strand, so enzymes can copy the sequence, has let researchers make at least one pass over 99.9 percent of the genome of a Siberian girl from roughly 80,000 years ago — giving science the most complete genetic picture of any human ancestor to date, all from the one bone you see above. The gene map tells us that the brown-skinned, brown-eyed, brown-haired girl was part of a splinter population known as the Denisovans that sat in between Neanderthals and ourselves, having forked the family tree hundreds of thousands of years before today. It also shows that there’s a small trace of Denisovans and their Neanderthal roots in modern East Asia, which we would never have known just by staring at fossils. Future discoveries could take years to leave an impact, but MPI may have just opened the floodgates of knowledge for our collective history.”

via Wired

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Archaeologists from Bonn discover in Mexico the tomb of a Maya prince!

WEBWIRE – Monday, July 30, 2012

Cup provided the clue!

Archaeologists from the Department of Anthropology of the Americas at the University of Bonn have been excavating for the past four years together with the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History in the Maya city of Uxul in Campeche, Mexico. The aim of the excavation project under the direction of Prof. Dr. Nikolai Grube and Dr. Kai Delvendahl is to investigate the process of centralization and collapse of hegemonic state structures in the Maya Lowlands using the example of a mid-sized classic Maya city (Uxul) and its ties to a supra-regional center (Calakmul). Research at Uxul, located close to the border with Guatemala, is being funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).

Since 2011, excavations have concentrated on the royal palace complex, which is located directly south of the main plazas in the center of Uxul. The palace extends 120 x 130 meters and consists of at least eleven individual buildings which surround five courtyards. “The palace complex was built around 650 AD, a time when the neighboring ruling dynasty from Calakmul was extending its influence over large areas of the Maya Lowlands” explains Professor Grube. In 2011, six sculpted panels were discovered during excavations of the southern stairway of the largest building of the group, Structure K2. Four of these panels depict kings from Calakmul, playing ball. The similarities in the layout of the centers of Calakmul and Uxul and especially of the main palace complexes in the two cities let the researchers to suggest that Uxul, originally a smaller independent kingdom, may have been temporarily ruled and inhabited by members of the Kaan Dynasty of Calakmul. Through recent excavations in several of Uxul´s central buildings, the changes in the physiognomy of the city´s center can be linked directly to the time of military and political expansion of the Kaan Dynasty during the reign of Yukno´m Ch´een II, in the first half of the 7th century. However, the influence subsided after 705 AD, and there is a strong likelihood that a local ruling family came back to power for a few generations. At the start of the 9th century, Uxul was almost completely abandoned.

“During this year´s excavation below one of the southern rooms of Structure K2, we have discovered a richly furnished tomb, which can be dated to the time right after the influence of Calakmul in Uxul had ended” explains Dr. Delvendahl. The walls of the crypt are made of rough stone and the chamber was covered with a corbel vault, typical for the Maya culture. In the interior of this tomb chamber which dates back about 1,300 years, the remains of a young man were discovered who was buried on his back with his arms folded. Deposited around him were four ceramic plates and five ceramic vases in an exceptionally preserved state, some of which were decorated with spectacular paintings and moldings. A unique plate, painted in the famed Codex-Style, was covering the skull of the deceased.

Vessel with dedication may point to the identity of the deceased.

“On one of the vases, there was a simple dedication, written in elegantly molded hieroglyphics, which read: ’[This is] the drinking vessel of the young man/prince’. Also a second molded vessel appears to mention a young man or prince” says Professor Grube. Although these references are not definite clues as to the identity of the departed, the location of the tomb and the absence of certain status markers, such as jade jewelry, would indicate that the deceased was a young male member of the ruling family who was not in direct line for the throne. A possible date on one of the vessels corresponds to the year 711 AD; therefore the death of the young prince and the construction of his tomb can be dated back to the second or third decade of the 8th century. The exceptionally preserved ceramics in particular make this tomb one of the most significant discoveries of its kind in the entire Maya Lowlands.

Road construction to improve Main Street – Monday, March 01, 2010

Road construction to improve Main Street

Monday, March 01, 2010

Commuters in downtown Humble have been grappling with traffic congestion as Main Street intersection renovations begin, and traffic is funneled down to one lane. Mayor Donnie McMannes provided an update on progress with the project designed to give historic downtown an Old-World charm.

“This project has been eight years in the making,” said McMannes. “I’m glad to see the progress taking place.”

The first of the downtown renovations is the intersection of Main Street and Avenue A. “We’ve been working on the intersection for two or three weeks,” said McMannes. “Most of the work at this point is rough work.”

McMannes said the old concrete has been removed. Concrete boxes that connect storm sewers and the new water lines have been installed and buried.

“All of the prep work had to be completed before we start work on the intersection’s design,” he said. “The old water lines are around 70 years old. They need to be replaced now, so we don’t develop a problem and have to tear everything up later.”

As a side note, the mayor said workers who were hollowing and leveling the intersection recently discovered more than 100 horseshoes and a rasp file that appear to have been in the ground under the street for a long time. He speculated that they may be from an old blacksmith shop in the area.

“We could get through the process of replacing the road a lot faster if we closed the intersection completely down, said McMannes, “but there are businesses there that need access to their property. We will work on one side of the street, then move to the other side. It may take a little longer, but it will be better for the businesses downtown.”

McMannes said the forecast for completion of the project is dependent on weather, but will involve at least another month’s work. When the project is finished, he said the city will have a fresh new look. New concrete will extend 30 to 40 feet from the intersection, which will be surfaced with red and gray pavers in a herringbone design. There will be a gray star in the middle of the intersection, surrounded by a red-brick design inside a gray-brick circle. The intersection will be modified to accommodate those with disabilities, which will include sloped sidewalks to accommodate wheelchairs and a pedestrian priority traffic button.

“The old suspended street lights will be replaced. A light pole with an arm will reach across with the new traffic lights on it, then the light post rises up to a turn of the century street light,” said McMannes.

The Mayor also said this project is the first of the downtown street renovations, but that it will not be the last. He said, however, that the Main Street and Avenue A intersection would be the most elaborate. Those that follow will be a little more modest, but still complement this first intersection.

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