The Antikythera device: Some not so obvious "implications" resulting from it's very existence.

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posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 01:18 AM
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Recently, I created a thread that showed how an engineer had successfully duplicated elements of the Antikythera device using Lego Technic components ... a truly eye-opening and amazing achievement.
Well worth taking a look at for those of you with an interest in ancient devices who haven't already done so.

Antikythera mechanism: Apple engineer makes fully functional reproduction out of Lego parts !


The above got me thinking further about not the device itself, but what the existence of the device implies regarding the technological, mathematical and scientific framework that simply HAD to be in place for such a device to have been even considered, designed and completed successfully.
Consequently, I decided a thread along those lines might not be a bad idea and could serve to generate additional incites regarding those long ago scientific geniuses responsible for the creation of the Antikythera device.

When you stop to really consider the ramifications resulting from the existence of the Antikythera device for the degree of actual Greek scientific, mathematical and technological knowledge circa 100 - 200 B.C., and then compare it to the classically accepted status of Greek knowledge for that time period, there is an obvious incongruity. Such a device immediately and unambiguously implies that ancient Greek knowledge and technology simply had to have been more advanced than we've been led to believe and that therefore, there must be significant gaps/losses in our understanding of civilizations that were precedent to our own.
And if we follow that train of logic, there is no reason at all to suppose that such advanced technology and knowledge was entirely restricted to the ancient Greek civilization alone. Knowledge doesn't exist in isolation or a vacuum but has a tendency to be disseminated and shared and become universally available. Knowledge also doesn't appear fully formed but is the result of much experimentation and discovery by earlier civilizations that subsequently "bequeathed" that knowledge to the civilizations that eventually followed and replaced them.

With the re-discovery of the Antikythera device, comes conclusive and indisputable evidence that ancient knowledge was, at one point in time, far more sophisticated than currently believed but which for reasons currently unknown, was subsequently lost and forgotten for millennia afterwards.



The Antikythera device was constructed to perform automatic calculations relating to the movement of the moon, sun and planets and to facilitate the accurate prediction of occurrence of certain celestial phenomena.

So lets take a quick look at the prerequisite technology and knowledge that simply HAD to have been in existence, in place and in use within that ancient Greek civilization for the design and construction of such a device to even have a hope of succeeding.

1. Working backwards from the completed, highly accurate and fully working device, it's plainly obvious that the designers/craftsmen had to have a sophisticated understanding of the movements of the celestial bodies plus access to highly accurate data relating to their movements. Without such a foundation, the construction of the device would have been entirely futile and even if completed, would have produced highly inaccurate results.

Fact:
So therefore there MUST have been a very large body of highly detailed and extremely accurate astronomical observations ALREADY in existence to use as input data in the devices design and construction.

This implies a concerted effort would have been necessary to acquire such data and as one person working alone would not have been able to produce such data, therefore the existence of a group or society (whether Greek or pre-Greek) specializing in such astronomical data having existed at some earlier point in time prior to the device, would be mandatory.


2. The success of the design was entirely dependent on the mathematical calculations performed by the multitude of internal gears. These gears essentially functioned as an analogue computer/calculator using the equivalent of a hard-coded program with calculation parameters stored in the form of gear diameter, cog/teeth count and rotational speed to generate results and produce variable output.
This immediately implies that the designers had expert knowledge of gear mechanics and how gear ratios and transmitted torque are controlled by gear wheel diameter and cog/teeth number. This further implies that the final arrangement of the multitude of gears within the device were NOT arrived at by random trial and error but in fact MUST have been pre-designed and accurately calculated regarding physical placement, gear diameter, teeth count, etc prior to the physical construction of the device itself.

To do this, the designers must have been FULLY aware of and conversant with the equivalent of the following displayed modern table that supplies the necessary formulas that MUST be used when working with gears.

Note that the Antikythera gears primarily consisted of the simplest type of gear shape, referred to as spur gears.



Obviously they would NOT have used the EXACT terminology and formulas as shown in the above table but they MUST have had a comparable equivalent that they relied upon when calculating gear wheel diameter, teeth number, etc.

Fact:
Without such highly advanced mathematical knowledge relating to gear mechanics, the Antikythera device would have been impossible to design, let alone construct.

One also has to raise the question that with the incredibly sophisticated knowledge and understanding of gear mechanics demonstrated by the creators of the Antikythera device, surely it seems incredulous that such knowledge and expertise would have been used once only, and entirely restricted to, the development of the device itself. Why would such extensive knowledge and control of gear mechanics NOT permeate that entire ancient Greek civilization and be used in multitudes of different ways to benefit that civilization ? The benefits of gear based mechanics must have been obvious ... and yet we are clueless in this regard.


3. Now, one has to understand that such sophisticated and unquestionably advanced technology and mathematical knowledge cannot exist in isolation and does not appear out of nowhere.

Fact:
The implication is that there must have been other related branches of technology and mathematical knowledge equally as sophisticated and advanced which apparently, along with the Antikythera technology, again for some reason became lost and forgotten to later civilizations.


4. The Antikythera device is unquestionably one of sophistication and extreme precision and therefore would have required correspondingly highly specialized tools and instruments in its manufacture. One doesn't create a finally crafted watch using a crude hammer and other inappropriately sized tools but instead uses tools specifically designed for such fine and delicate work. Such must have also been the case with the Antikythera device.

Fact:
There must have been additional craftsmen involved who had developed the techniques and knowledge required to produce the tools essential for the construction of the device. This implies metallurgical specialization of the highest order.

Again, such specialist metallurgical knowledge and techniques didn't appear fully formed and available overnight purely for the construction of the device, but had to have already been in existence and available within the Greek civilization of that period, only to be lost and forgotten.


Ok, the preceding points are ones that in my opinion are the immediately obvious corollaries to the existence of the Antikythera device. However, I'm sure that with just a bit more consideration, that many, many more would become obvious.
It's one thing to fixate upon the device itself as undoubtedly it IS unique amongst historical artifacts. But when one takes a step back and begins to ask HOW was the device planned, designed and constructed, then it becomes obvious that the device is the equivalent of a rock being dropped into a pond ... and the resulting "ripples" caused by the devices very existence cannot help but make us question our smug and know-it-all attitude and belief that ancient civilizations were almost entirely technologically, scientifically and mathematically "primitive".




posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 01:34 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 



The Antikythera device was constructed to perform automatic calculations relating to the movement of the moon, sun and planets and to facilitate the accurate prediction of occurrence of certain celestial phenomena.


Good thread and this device has always interested me..
But I do think you are making many unfounded assumptions in the OP..

It is well known that many other groups had a deep understanding of the movement of stars and planets so that bit is already known...

What's to say that a person or small group were not the only ones to try and create this device?
There have been many people in history that have stood out as being way ahead of the rest..
Tesla of course springs to mind..We don't associate all in Tesla's era as being as intelligent as him..

Also, although most agree with what this device was designed to do, I haven't seen anywhere that states if it actually worked or how accurate it was..I heard it was too coroded to know it's workings 100%..

I just think it's a big leap to look at one item and use that to decide the abilities of an entire era...



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 01:45 AM
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Originally posted by backinblack
reply to post by tauristercus
 


Also, although most agree with what this device was designed to do, I haven't seen anywhere that states if it actually worked or how accurate it was..I heard it was too coroded to know it's workings 100%..


As far as I know ...


Michael Wright, a former curator at the Science Museum in London, has built a replica of the Antikythera, which works perfectly.





I just think it's a big leap to look at one item and use that to decide the abilities of an entire era...


Not the abilities of an entire era ... mainly just a basic extrapolation of necessary pre-requisites that would have been required.

After all, examining any device from our current technology would give you some clues and ideas as to what some of the requirements would be for it's construction.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 01:58 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 



With the re-discovery of the Antikythera device, comes conclusive and indisputable evidence that ancient knowledge was, at one point in time, far more sophisticated than currently believed but which for reasons currently unknown, was subsequently lost and forgotten for millennia afterwards.


Now that does make you wonder..That period is reasonably well documented but as you say there must be gaps..
Why and what filled those gaps is a big question...
The ability and knowledge used to make this device does not seem to have been carried forward..
Even the first time piece wasn't made fow many more years..
Ancient history is filled with unanswered questions..

Ohh S&F



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:08 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 


SandF
excelent idea for a thread.
what I would like to know is:
Where else have the greeks shown this same gear making ability. and that math
What is the earliest we know of where they knew the astronomy, and that math
or if not the greeks who?

that machine would have to have been funded
navigation tricks and maps were jealously guarded
PS
are we dealing with a greek tesla?
or what about the fancy math contained in the pyramids?

edit on 12-12-2010 by Danbones because: PS
edit on 12-12-2010 by Danbones because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:11 AM
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reply to post by Danbones
 


I did read up a bit and some suggest the astronomy side may have come from Egypt..
Makes sense with the cycles.
www.philipcoppens.com...



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:21 AM
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Originally posted by Danbones
reply to post by tauristercus
 

what I would like to know is:

that machine would have to have been funded


Now thats an excellent point and one that didn't occur to me !

Something like that device would have involved a significant number of people ... designers, mathematicians, astronomers, metal workers, etc, etc and would have incurred a significant cost in design, development and testing. I'm sure that the average "joe blow" Greek citizen of that time period would NOT have been able to finance the costs involved ... so WHO were the financiers ?

Interesting ... very interesting !


Also, just occurred to me ... who would have thought up the original idea to construct something so advanced in the 1st place and why ? You don't just wake up one morning and say to yourself ... "I think I'll build a computer today" !



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:25 AM
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This is based on the asumption that this was the only one of it's kind , these devices may have been as common as todays wrist watch or mobile phones .I doubt in a thousand years from now you will find any evidence of their existance either .Well presented post anyways .
edit on 12-12-2010 by 13th Zodiac because: Additional text .
edit on 12-12-2010 by 13th Zodiac because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:29 AM
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reply to post by 13th Zodiac
 


Good point..

Wright also believes the device was not a one-off. "The designer and maker of the device knew what they wanted to achieve and they did it expertly; they made no mistakes. To do this, it can't have been very far from their every day stock work." So it was probably “mass produced” at the time and must have been the product of previous, less fancy clocks. That those earlier models have been lost in the mists of time is understandable, but the big question by which everyone is baffled, is why such clocks did not continue to be build in the centuries that followed… indeed, why it took more than a millennium before a clock of the same technological expertise appeared again.


www.philipcoppens.com...

They may have been mere ornaments oy toys for the rich considering that most agree they were manual and so were not much good for navigation..



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:31 AM
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reply to post by backinblack
 


Excelent find
All the maps Columbus had, and the Piri Reis map, are examples of ancient maps that were drawn from much more ancient maps.
this is shown by the projections used from map to map

The Egyptian mummies had traces of Cocain...

I'm just guessing the device was as the article states, common in its day, and was the thing carried by many ship captains.

Iron or Hittite steel would rust rapidly in the salt sea air
Also the greeks like the egyptions, may have been planting their writing on things made much older.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:37 AM
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great thread T!

you bring up great points.

kinda brings this guy into the picture?

en.wikipedia.org...

the greek god of technology, among other stuff.

i know this is from pravda but gives a little more info.

english.pravda.ru...


did he make it? wouldn't think so, myself.

did the greeks get it from some other people?

maybe?



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:44 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 


here is a likely candidate...
if not then someone just like him


The oldest coins are considered by other numismatists to be the Aegina Chelone coins which were minted ca. 700-550 BC, either by the local Aegina people or by Pheidon king of Argos (who first set the standards of weights and measures). In the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, there is a unique electrum stater of Aegina. The date of this coin can hardly be much later than about B.C. 700


en.wikipedia.org...



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:56 AM
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Originally posted by 13th Zodiac
This is based on the asumption that this was the only one of it's kind , these devices may have been as common as todays wrist watch or mobile phones


You may be right that eventually the device may have become commonplace.

But still, there would have had to be a sizeable capital outlay incurred in the design, development, construction and testing of the prototype unit.
Makes you wonder just who the financial backers may have been and what was in it for them. I'm sure that even as far as 2000 years ago, as today, anyone investing large sums of venture capital in an untried project would be expecting to recoup a tidy profit for their risk.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 03:03 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 



But still, there would have had to be a sizeable capital outlay incurred in the design, development, construction and testing of the prototype unit.
Makes you wonder just who the financial backers may have been and what was in it for them. I'm sure that even as far as 2000 years ago, as today, anyone investing large sums of venture capital in an untried project would be expecting to recoup a tidy profit for their risk.


Please please don't talk like that....
In a minute we will have Boon in here saying it was a joint op with Wiki,Soros and the CIA.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 05:01 AM
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Lets assume the celestial knowledge came from Egypt.

So did Moses, the one that lead the Israelites from Egypt with the help of their lord.
Moses turned up with a mysterious device called the arc of the covenant.

What if this arc was also a piece of ancient knowledge and Moses as son of a pharaoh learned how to build and use it.

Enoch the Prophet and ancestor of Noach, is mentioned to get a look in the heavens.
Speculation exist of him ordering the build of the big pyramid, and he was known in ancient Greek as Hermes.

So I've read.

The white man that visited the Americas and predicted his return. It all seems to be connected.
A Jesus that warns about a majority of people that will have place their trust in the hands of the impostor.

Coincidence maybe regarding the loss of knowledge during the rain of the Catholic churge, which is already mentioned as the whore of Babylon. The endless speculative theories about an elite or illuminated group of people that has been in power ever since Egypt. Passing down the ancient knowledge benefiting only their own interests.

Along with other unexplained historical evidence.

It seems to me that we are closing in on an alternative history one that explains all our doubts puzzles and questions. Excited as I get by these kind of thoughts their is fear . Cause IMO history came with a warning for the future and it seems we are close to a life we are warned not to live...

Seriously Great thread ! S & F

PS
Sorry for going all speculative in a factual based thread. I can't help it.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 10:05 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 


Hi tautistercus,
I read your other thread about the Lego reproduction of this, and was amazed! My burning question is... why? Why did they have a burning desire to know when eclipses would happen, and the movements of the planets? What importance of this is lost on me?



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 10:11 AM
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That is interesting. You could also find out their units of measurement from the diameter size in gears. People tend to use nice round numbers if they can, while manufacturing things. Also gears itself gives indications of manufacturing technology. You need a somekind of a lathe and something that is harder than gear metal to cut it. Also the metal itself gives indications of its manufacture, and its isotopes and impurities give location of ore ( location of a mine). This could tell us about possible trade routes (highly speculative).



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 10:15 AM
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Honestly, I think ET was involved. Your argument makes a strong case for anceient astronauts...



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 10:52 AM
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reply to post by tauristercus
 




The word now is that this gizmo dates back to ancient Sumeria... Sorry I forgot the link. In other words the Greeks may have had it, maybe even used it, but they didn't make it.
edit on 12-12-2010 by trailertrash because: typo



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 11:15 AM
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reply to post by new_here
 


If the devices function was to predict celestial events, then by the sheer fact that it is portable that it could be used by the wealthy so that they could adhere to any religious duties that are celestially motivated whilst travelling.

Just one possible use.





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