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"It was not a research tool, something that an astronomer would use to do computations, or even an astrologer to do prognostications, but something that you would use to teach about the cosmos and our place in the cosmos," Jones said. "It's like a textbook of astronomy as it was understood then, which connected the movements of the sky and the planets with the lives of the ancient Greeks and their environment."
"I would see it as more something that might be a philosopher's instructional device."
The letters - some just 1.2 millimeters (1/20 of an inch) tall - were engraved on the inside covers and visible front and back sections of the mechanism, which originally had the rough dimensions of an office box-file, was encased in wood and operated with a hand-crank.
It wasn't quite a manual, more like a long label you would get on a museum to describe a display, according to another team member, Mike Edmunds, who is an emeritus professor of astrophysics at Cardiff University.
"It's not telling you how to use it, it says 'what you see is such and such,' rather than 'turn this knob and it shows you something,'" he said Thursday, during a presentation of the team's findings in Athens.
The writing verifies the Antikythera mechanism’s capabilities, with a couple of new wrinkles added: The text refers to upcoming eclipses by color, which may mean they were viewed as having some kind of oracular meaning. Second, it appears the device was built by more than one person on the island of Rhodes, and that it probably wasn’t the only one of its kind. The ancient Greeks were apparently even further ahead in their astronomical understanding and mechanical know-how than we’d imagined.
In June of 2016, an international team of experts revealed new information derived from tiny inscriptions on the devices parts in ancient Greek that had been too tiny to read—some of its characters are just 1/20th of an inch wide—until cutting-edge imaging technology allowed it to be more clearly seen. They’ve now read about 35,00 characters explaining the device.
The Antikythera Mechanism Research Project is an international collaboration of academic researchers, supported by some of the world's best high-technology companies, which aims to completely reassess the function and significance of the Antikythera Mechanism.
Other inscriptions hint at where the mechanism was made. Paul Iversen, a classicist at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, reports that the calendar includes month names used in Corinth and its colonies in northwest Greece. A dial that displayed the timing of major athletic festivals, including the Olympics, lists Naa, a festival held in northwest Greece, and Halieia, held to the south on the island of Rhodes. Perhaps the mechanism hailed from Rhodes and was being shipped north. The ancient philosopher Posidonius had a workshop in Rhodes that could have been the source; according to Cicero, Posidonius made a similar model of the heavens in the first century B.C.
originally posted by: Aliensun
It is, as stated, a teaching machine (as was the first atomic blast). My question is how many X years would it take X number of Greek scientists working with crude instruments (even in writing) to record the slow motions of the planet to compile the necessary data and then prove it in the design of the machine?
The Sumerians recorded that they were taught science by ET-like creatures,