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Camouflage technique from the past could have benefits in Today’s Warfare

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Republication from heritagedaily

Spartan APC Dazzle Camoflage

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Using the history of the past could help save lives in todays conflict.  Painting army vehicles with high contrast geometric patterns – ‘dazzle camouflage’ –  derived from past wars affects the perception of their speed and thus could make them less susceptible to rocket propelled grenade attacks, according to new research from the University of Bristol.

Warships in both the First and Second World Wars were painted with dazzle camouflage: startling geometric patterns aimed at confusing the enemy rather than concealing the vessel.  It was thought that such patterning would disrupt the enemy’s perception of a ship’s range, heading, size, shape and speed, thus reducing losses from torpedo attacks by submarines.  While there were good reasons to believe that these perceptual distortions occurred, the effectiveness of dazzle camouflage was never scientifically proven.

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Ασυνήθη κράνη και θωρακίσεις των Σαμουράι – Μέρος Α΄

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Στα δύο ακόλουθα άρθρα παρουσιάζω περισσότερες άγνωστες πτυχές της πολεμικής τέχνης των Σαμουράι κυρίως των περιόδων Muromachi (Ashikaga) και Edo της ιαπωνικής Ιστορίας, παρουσιάζοντας μερικά ασυνήθη και γενικά μη-τυπικά κράνη και θωρακίσεις τους. Οι εν λόγω περικεφαλαίες είτε έχουν ασύνηθες σχήμα, πχ έχουν σχήμα κογχύλιου ή πέλεκυ, είτε έχουν υπερπόντιες επιρροές, κυρίως ευρωπαϊκές. Επίσης παρουσιάζω μερικές θωρακίσεις με εξίσου ασυνήθεις διακοσμήσεις ή οι οποίες φέρουν ευρωπαϊκές επιρροές, όπως η πανοπλία (τουλάχιστον μία από αυτές) του μεγάλου σογκούν Τοκουγκάβα Ιεγιάσου. Τον 16ο αιώνα, οι πρώτοι Ευρωπαίοι ναυτίλοι εξερευνητές εμφανίσθηκαν στα πελάγη των Φιλιππίνων και της Ινδονησίας με πρωτοπόρο την ισπανική αποστολή του Μαγγελάνου (ο ίδιος ο Μαγγελάνος ήταν Πορτογάλος στην υπηρεσία του ισπανικού στέμματος). Λίγο αργότερα έπλευσαν  και στις θάλασσες της Κίνας και της Ιαπωνίας. Οι Ισπανοί και οι Πορτογάλοι ήταν οι πρώτοι που εμφανίσθηκαν εκεί ως έμποροι και αποικιστές, για να ακολουθηθούν σύντομα από τους Ολλανδούς και τους Βρετανούς.

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Happy New Year

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New study shows how Indo-European languages spread across Asia

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Republication from  humanities.ku.dk (University of Copenhagen)

Indo-European languages

A new study has discovered that horses were first domesticated by descendants of hunter-gatherer groups in Kazakhstan who left little direct trace in the ancestry of modern populations. The research sheds new light on the long-standing “steppe theory” on the origin and movement of Indo-European languages made possible by the domestication of the horse.

The domestication of the horse was a milestone in human history that allowed people, their languages, and their ideas to move further and faster than before, leading both to widespread farming and to horse-powered warfare.

 

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Genetic data reveal contrasting sex bias in Neolithic and Bronze Age Eurasian migrations

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Republication from PNAS

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Amy Goldberg, Torsten Günther, Noah A. Rosenberg, and Mattias Jakobsson
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Significance

Studies of differing female and male demographic histories on the basis of ancient genomes can provide insight into the social structures and cultural interactions during major events in human prehistory. We consider the sex-specific demography of two of the largest migrations in recent European prehistory. Using genome-wide ancient genetic data from multiple Eurasian populations spanning the last 10,000 years, we find no evidence of sex-biased migrations from Anatolia, despite the shift to patrilocality associated with the spread of farming. In contrast, we infer a massive male-biased migration from the steppe during the late Neolithic and Bronze Age. The contrasting patterns of sex-specific migration during these two migrations suggest that different sociocultural processes drove the two events.

Abstract

Dramatic events in human prehistory, such as the spread of agriculture to Europe from Anatolia and the late Neolithic/Bronze Age migration from the Pontic-Caspian Steppe, can be investigated using patterns of genetic variation among the people who lived in those times. In particular, studies of differing female and male demographic histories on the basis of ancient genomes can provide information about complexities of social structures and cultural interactions in prehistoric populations.

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Merry Christmas /Καλά Χριστούγεννα

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