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View Full Version : LightWave helped Antikythera Mechanism project



kopperdrake
05-15-2012, 09:42 AM
Spotted this whilst waiting for a render to do - seems the chap in charge of unravelling the mystery of the Antikythera Mechanism turned to LightWave to model the device - wonder if NewTek can get an article on it, would love to know how they got the data from the bespoke X-ray room X-Tek made for the project into LightWave. Fascinating device.

Iain
05-15-2012, 11:36 AM
I watched the TV show about this last week-fascinating.

Good catch Duncan-I didn't notice and I was paying attention at that part!

kopperdrake
05-15-2012, 01:40 PM
:D Didn't there used to be a thread ages ago about LW caught in action?

BeeVee
05-15-2012, 01:56 PM
Tony Freeth! A very good guy...

B

inkpen3d
05-16-2012, 10:38 AM
I watched the TV show about this last week-fascinating.


:agree:

Since it was by pure chance that the Antikythera mechanism was discovered, you have to wonder what else the ancient civilisations developed that we are simply unaware of? It certainly challenges our previous preconceptions of how sophisticated their science and technology had become!

Given that the Antikythera mechanism was so complex, this implies that there was a lot of developmental work over many generations preceding the production of that particular model.

As the book Decoding the Heavens by Jo Marchant says, there were probably quite a few of these mechanisms knocking about - they either got lost (as this one fortunately was) or simply melted down for their metal. Hopefully there's still some other fascinating discoveries to be made like this!

kopperdrake
05-16-2012, 10:52 AM
Sounds like a book to read inkpen, thanks for the heads up! It never ceases to amaze me how forward thinking some people were, just hindered by politics, social constraints and merely being born at the wrong time. It amazes me that things like this were actually made sometimes!

allabulle
05-16-2012, 10:57 AM
Here's a link where you can see LightWave in use for the research:
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-17989915

Edit: I post this link because outside the UK the iPlayer stream is not available. The original source is this, I think: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b01hlkcq/The_TwoThousandYearOld_Computer/

Edit: Here's a Nature documentary on the matter: http://www.nature.com/nature/videoarchive/antikythera/

inkpen3d
05-16-2012, 12:52 PM
Sounds like a book to read inkpen, thanks for the heads up! It never ceases to amaze me how forward thinking some people were, just hindered by politics, social constraints and merely being born at the wrong time. It amazes me that things like this were actually made sometimes!


The book (ISBN 9780434018352) was published in 2008, so it is probably not quite as up to date as that latest BBC documentary, but it is still a very interesting read and is packed full of information.

I am truly amazed at the level of sophistication of the Antikythera device - the sheer amount of observational and mathematical knowledge that is summarised in that one mechanism, plus the technical skill-set required to machine such accurate gear systems, just beggars belief. I certainly would be very, very hard-pressed to sit down and work out all the maths and manufacture such a device given the same set of observational data and metal-working tools that they had available back then - and I consider myself to be reasonably competent at such things!

inkpen3d
05-16-2012, 01:38 PM
Here are some other links that you might find interesting:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UpLcnAIpVRA&feature=related This is a video produced by the Hellenic Republic Ministry of Culture and Tourism. Nice views of the reconstructed mechanism, but notice how they do not mention any of the research and work done by Michael Wright or the other researchers mentioned in the BBC documentary! Watch just that video and you'd think they'd done all the hard work themselves!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4eUibFQKJqI A rather low quality video narrated by Jo Marchant of Michael Wright demonstrating his model of the mechanism back in 2008.