Tuesday, July 7, 2015

History: The Year is 1606

I've uploaded year 1606 to the TSP Wiki...


Here are some one liners...

The Dutch Find Australia But Miss the Point -- The Dutch finally land on the coast of Australia but think it is part of New Guinea. They will miss the cape and the Strait of Torres.

Galileo Is Feeling the Heat -- He invents the thermometer, in part. He also creates a compass-like thing that helps aim cannons. You have to see it. Then it makes sense instantly.

The Magic of 'Secret Writing' is Made Public -- This guy's books on Secret Writing are finally published... long after his death. They are books are on cryptography. They will go on the list of prohibited books because it is feared that this particular type of cryptography requires some level of magic

The Dutch Find Australia But Miss the Point

William Jansz has been commissioned by the United (Dutch) East India Company to seek out opportunities for trade in the East Indies. He is also looking for gold which is rumored to be found in the area of New Guinea. The Company has already established a colony at Banten in northwest Java. His ship, the Little Dove, reaches the Cape York Peninsula in Australia but he believes that it is part of New Guinea. He tries to establish trade with the natives but something goes wrong and after several members of his expedition are killed, he returns to Banten... totally missing the Torres Strait which separates Australia from New Guinea. A few months later Luís Vaz de Torres sails through the strait that today bears his name. He notes it for Spanish maps but he doesn't see Australia. The Dutch will notice the difference between their maps and the Spanish the maps and eventually everyone will figure it out. The name, Australia, comes from the Latin word meaning "southern" but it won't be applied to the land in any official capacity until the early 1800s. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Well... what went wrong between Dutch and the native Australians? According to the oral history of the tribe, everything went great until the Dutch insisted that the natives do the hunting for them and then took their women. Arguments broke out and people died. The trade didn't go well because the natives took one look at the flour the Dutch were offering and threw it away. They didn't know what to do with it and didn't want to know. This reminds me of the time, during the opening days of the war in Afghanistan, when the USA would air-drop food packages to Afghan villages. Critics said that the Afghans didn't understand what they were supposed to do with the packages... and frankly... who, in their right mind, would want to eat peanut butter? Clearly, one month after the 9-11 attacks, as we bombed the Taliban, the United States military was not fully prepared with culturally correct food packages for Afghan citizens, but food is food. [6] [7]

Galileo Is Feeling the Heat

Galileo is one of several people who are said to have invented the thermometer. Frankly, many schemes have been used down the centuries to measure a change in the temperature. Galileo worked out some sort of liquid moving in response to the expansion or contraction of a gas. Still, it will be a few more years before drawings will be made and the thermometer will take the shape of a tube with marks to measure the change. This is why the credit for the invention of the thermometer is spread around. It was an incremental process of development rather than a single event. [8] [9]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
Many of the so-called inventions of Galileo are actually improvements on previous designs or engineering feats rather than inventions themselves. The telescope was one of his improvements, but he didn't invent the telescope. He also created a geometric compass (not a magnetic compass) to help the military perform ballistic calculations when aiming their cannons. It looks like a plumb-bob hanging next to a triangular scale. If you see it, you will recognize instantly how it works... which was the point of creating it. Most gunners had little or no math skills but they had eyes and they could be trained to count. By following the marks on the scale they could aim their guns to great precision. Of course, when making guns easy to aim so that any idiot can do it, one should use care. Idiots can be so d-mned ingenious.

The Magic of 'Secret Writing' is Made Public

Johann Heidenberg is long dead but his books entitled "Secret Writing" have been passed around privately all these years since his death. Reading them requires a decryption key and that key is made public this year. Two volumes of his secret books are published in Germany. People expect to see advice on magic and the occult but these two volumes contain advice on how to send secret messages that do not require trusted messengers. In other words... they are cryptographic messages. His books will soon be added to the list of books prohibited by the Catholic Church... probably because it is believed that part of the trick of secret writing involves magic. The books will remain on the list until 1900. [10] [11] [12] [13]
My Take by Alex Shrugged
I have never seen magic. Experts have looked at the methods of encryption used in these books and they are confident that no magic was used to encrypt these volumes. There is supposed to be a 3rd volume that contains occult secrets but the volume has never been found. If it is found one day, I doubt it will contain any workable magic formulas. Magic is fun to imagine and such imaginings remain harmless until one tries to do it. For example: it is fun to imagine myself as Superman... until I try to fly off of the roof of my house without benefit of parachute. That would not disprove the existence of Superman, but clearly, I would be eliminated as a possible candidate. [14]

This Year on Wikipedia

Year 1606, Wikipedia.

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