Fieldnotes: News Briefs

Brief news items on the AIA professional membership and newsworthy activities in the field, including links to recently published institutional press releases or articles in the media.

The New York Times
December 10, 2010
When the Environmental Protection Agency cleans up toxic waste at Superfund sites, it is required to determine if significant historic features are present. Sometimes archaeologists are asked to retrieve artifacts while wearing hazmat gear and respirators.
Trent University - Daily News
November 8, 2010
A team of Trent University archaeologists led by Dr. Helen R. Haines has recently uncovered what is believed to be the name of a previously unknown Mayan ruler painted on the wall of a tomb located on the site of Ka'Kabish in North-Central Belize. Although translation is still on-going, Dr. Christophe Helmke, an epigrapher at the University of Copenhagen, believes that the glyphs record a name. Based on the tomb’s design and construction, Trent’s archaeologists believe that the individual was a person of importance and likely a ruler of the site. The Trent archaeological team led by Prof. Haines, who is based at Trent University Oshawa, Thornton Road Campus, is supported by a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) grant through Trent University.  
Apple
October 15, 2010
The University of Cincinnati's excavations at Pompeii ('PARP:PS' - directed by Steven Ellis) have been featured on the Apple website - one of the most visited websites on the planet!  Apple caught on that PARP:PS were using iPads to revolutionize their field-work and so sent out a team to document this use of cuting-edge technology in archaeology.  One of the more public results has been the story on their website, which has led to much discussion and excitement in the archaeological community about the use of tablet computers to document the past.   
Thomas D. Cox, Researcher
October 12, 2010
www.carvedinstone.us A new interpretation of the 3000 year old Tugalo Stone, located in Northeastern Georgia (USA) has revealed it to have a multitude of functions: It is a solstice stone marking the summer solstice (June 21) with specific Celt-Iberian language and using the star constellations of Orion and Auriga to show the Summer Solstice sunrise between the two constellations. It is a map-making navigational aid for travellers from the tip of Spain and North Africa, including the use of star constellations, the North Star and the sun pictured with carvings of phoenecian-style ships. The directions indicate crossing with the prevailing late spring winds (hurricane season today) On the reverse side are navigational instructions for the return up the eastern U.S. coast and crossing to England. The stone was originally located (in 1814) on a strategic mound alongside the Tugalo River (Headwaters of the Savannah River, a major river leading to the Gold and Copper mining areas) There is evidence that the stone was used to make copies for travellers to take maps. Petroglyph and ancient language researcher Thomas D. Cox made these discoveries.  tcox@carvedinstone.us
Technology Review, published by MIT
October 7, 2010
A paper in arXiv is proposing to observe with Google Maps the surface of Peruvian country near the Titicaca Lake because of its geoglyphs created by ancient earthworks, constituting the remains of an extensive Andean agricultural system. The author, A.C. Sparavigna of Politecnico di Torino, in a following arXiv article, proposes these geoglyphs as a part of an engineering graphic design.

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