This Mysterious Underground Building Still Baffles Everyone

This Mysterious Underground Building Still Baffles Everyone
Word spread, and a local schoolteacher soon volunteered his young son, Joshua, to be lowered into the hole with a candle. If you think dipping your child into a mysterious cavern in the Earth seems a bit, well, unsafe, we do, too. Luckily, Joshua was fine, and what he saw underground was a breathtaking mystery.

When Joshua was pulled out, he described rooms filled with hundreds of thousands of carefully arranged shells.

Needless to say, the adults were a bit skeptical, but when the hole was widened and they saw if for themselves, they were stunned. There was a passage, a rotunda, and an altar chamber, and the whole thing was covered in a mosaic of shells.

Joshua’s father, the schoolteacher, immediately thought of the financial benefit that this place might have. He quickly bought up the land and began renovating the grotto, making it suitable for visitors. Two years later, in 1837, the Margate Shell Grotto opened to the public for the first time. And he was right; it did catch on with the public, and it’s still open and enjoying visitors today. Today, it’s also got a museum, gift shop, and cafe.

But there’s still a major question hanging in the air: who built this, and why?

With all these shells so carefully arranged, it’s clear that someone spent a lot of time — and money — on this creation. The shells are arranged in sun and star shapes, and vaulted ceilings and altar-like spaces lead some to believe it once had religious significance. Yet no one knows for sure, and no one is even sure how old the structure is.

Theories about its origin place it as being built as long as 3,000 years ago.

Other theories also run the gamut between ordinary and totally out there. Some think it was created as an aristocrat’s folly sometime in the 1700s. Others think it might have been used as an astrological calendar, or that it’s connected with the Freemasons or the Knights Templar. Still, others maintain it is connected to a mysterious Mexican culture that lived some 12,000 years ago.

Shell grottoes were actually quite popular in Europe in the 1700s among the wealthy.

There’s only one catch: the Grotto’s location was on farmland, and that land has never been part of a large estate, where follies would have been built. Even in 1835, there was no record of its construction, which would have been a major undertaking. People have been so stumped by this that in the 1930s, people held seances in the hopes of contacting the spirits of whoever built it.

Visitors from the 1930s left their mark on some scallop shells in the grotto.

The shells in the grotto, which include scallops, whelks, mussels, cockles, limpets, and oysters, can all be found locally. Only the flat winkle shells had to be brought in from elsewhere.

The arrangement of the shells must have taken countless hours of painstaking work.

In all, there are over 2,000 square feet of shell mosaic in the grotto.

Many of the shells in the grotto have faded over time and lost their luster through water damage. This recreation shows what they might have looked like at the time the grotto was built. It would have been full of dazzling color.

(via Kuriositas, Wikipedia)

To determine the age of the shells, they could be carbon dated. However, on the Shell Grotto’s FAQ page, it’s stated that this process is very expensive, and other conservation issues are currently prioritized. Perhaps one day, we’ll at least know when this was built. For now, our imaginations can run wild with all the possibilities of the Shell Grotto’s mysterious past. Was it a smuggler’s hideout? A secret temple? An underground party room? The life’s work of a madman? Whatever it was, someone obviously cared about it enough to decorate it like this.

Read more: http://www.disclose.tv/news/this_mysterious_underground_building_still_baffles_everyone/118943#ixzz3ehCnw7IJ

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The Worst Places To Seek Refuge During The Zombie Apocalypse

Posted: 10/21/2014 8:26 pm EDT
If and when the zombie apocalypse is nigh, we will all have to make one monumental decision: Where to seek refuge?

Steer clear of the 25 cities on the map below, produced by real-estate website Trulia. Unless you’re a zombie, in which case, live it up! (Oh wait, you can’t.)

zombieapocalypse

When the undead rise up, hitting the beach in zombie-free bliss will not be an option. Honolulu is ranked as the most appetizing city for hungry zombies.

Residents of Honolulu will make easy targets for the walking dead, what with the city’s high walkability and lack of hardware stores (where there are potential zombie-killing weapons). Honolulu also has a high hospital density, making it easy for zombies to find weak victims, and it is extremely congested, with some of the worst traffic in the nation.

New York is number two on the list, followed by Newark, Boston, and Washington D.C.

Trulia calculated the survivability of the cities using the following criteria: highest walk score, lowest hardware store density, highest hospital density, and most congestion.

So where should we find refuge? We might take a page from the book of “The Walking Dead’s” Rick Grimes and build a fortress in Atlanta — it doesn’t even appear on the map.

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Old Video Screens Predicted Facebook Response to SCOTUS Ruling…

I knew that the rainbow lens used on so many Facebook profiles following the SCOTUS ruling reminded me of something…  Now only the very old will get this – because you had to grow up in an era when you went to an arcade to play video games and you had to put in quarters.

The screens on those video machines were cathode ray tubes that illuminated pixels with electron beams generated by an electro-magnet.  This caused a Gauss problem due to the lines of flux.  Not to get too technical, but the imbalance of magnetic waves messed up the screen and made it swirly and look like a rainbow.  You had to fix the screens by using a circular magnet known as a De-Gausser.

Coincidence?  Or were early gaming companies using Nostradamus like screens?

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Ten photos of 3D printed bridges, buildings and other supersized structures

By , June 22, 2015, 6:20 AM PST // @nickjheath

If you thought 3D printers were only good for building tiny plastic toys then you’re mostly right, especially when it comes to desktop models.

However, there are people using the technology to realize grander designs, to create bridges and even buildings. Here are 10 projects promising to make 3D printing bigger and better.

bridge1

Bridges

A Dutch start-up, MX3D, plans to use robotic arms to weld layer upon layer of molten steel together into a steel bridge across a canal in Amsterdam. MX3D hopes to begin work on building the bridge, using the process seen in an artist’s impression above, in September.

Image: MX3D

3dbuilding

​Buildings

This five-storey building was built using a 150-meter long 3D printer, using “ink” made from recycled construction waste. When it was built earlier this year, the structure in Suzhou Industrial Park, Shanghai, China, was claimed to be the “world’s tallest 3D-printed building”.

Image: WinSun Decoration Design Engineering

moonbase

​Moonbases

This concept for a 3D-printed lunar base was devised by the European Space Agency with architects Foster+Partners. Their vision is for two robot 3D printers to mix lunar soil with other materials and layer it over an inflatable dome to form a protective shell over a moonbase, which could house four people.

Image: ESA

strati

Cars

The Strati is an electric car with a 3D printed body and chassis made of just 40 parts, compared to more than 20,000 in a typical vehicle. The vehicle is built from a single block of ABS plastic reinforced with carbon fiber and takes 44 hours to print. Manufacturer, Arizona-based Local Motors, says the car, due for release in 2016, will have a top speed of 50mph and range of about 62 miles.

Image: Local Motors

berkeley-bloom

Pavilions

This nine-feet high pavillion measures 12 by 12 feet across and is made up of 840 3D-printed bricks. The structure was made by researchers at UC Berkeley, who developed a new type of iron oxide-free Portland cement polymer formulation, which allowed for faster and lower cost construction than alternate materials for 3D-printing structures.

Image: UC Berkeley

room

Rooms

Even though it’s described as a house, this is at best a 3D-printed room, and a rather cosy one at that. The pod, created by students in the US and England, packs a toilet, kitchenette, and furniture into a compact structure. It took 60 hours for the voxeljet VX4000 printer to make and cost about €60,000.

Image: voxeljet

plane

Planes

This plane is full of 3D printed parts. This Airbus A350 XWB plane has more than 1,000 flight components made using high-end additive manufacturing 3D printers. The A350 XWB is Airbus’ extra wide body plane that seats about 315 passengers and has a range of 7,750 nautical miles. The parts were made out of ULTEM 9085 resin using an FDM 3D Production Systems machine.

Image: Airbus

rocket

Rockets

Satellite company Rocket Lab says its Rutherford rocket engine is the first of its type to use 3D printing for its primary components. All its parts – the regeneratively cooled thrust chamber, the injector, the pumps and the main propellant valves – can be printed from titanium alloys within about three days using a 3D printing technique called electron beam melting. Traditionally manufacturing the parts would take months, according to Rocket Lab.

Image: Rocket Lab

sculpture

Sizable sculptures

Resembling a Minecraft creation made real, this 3D-printed head by artist Miguel Chevalier depicts the Roman God Janus, who legend claimed could gaze into the past and the future at the same time. Printed in 40 hours as a single block using a voxeljet VX4000 printer, it weighs 120kg and measures 1000 x 1000 x 820 mm.

Image: voxeljet

minibuilder

Building bots

The Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia claim their Minibuilder robots can construct large structures of many different proportions. The bots use robotic arms, rollers and vacuum suction cups to build layer by layer, as seen above.

Image: Institute for Advanced Architecture

About Nick Heath

Nick Heath is chief reporter for TechRepublic UK. He writes about the technology that IT-decision makers need to know about, and the latest happenings in the European tech scene.

 

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Cute Dog Pictures – Late Edition

Sorry fans for the dirth of posts over the weekend.  My son Alex married an awesome young lady named Suzanna and I was in Sedona, Arizona for the wedding all weekend.  Today, I was busy with my day job so I apologize for missing some posts, but I had good reasons.  I will try to find some particularly interesting things to post this week to make up for it.  Enjoy!

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Random Humor for the Start of Your Weekend

Some random humor…

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Cute Dogs for Your Monday Blues

Cute dogs to start off the week with a smile…

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