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Researchers Have Reconstructed an Ancient Egyptian Throne

Researchers at Harvard University recently used computer modeling software to recreate the 4500-year-old throne of Queen Hetepheres, an Egyptian ruler who lived around 2550 BCE. The ornate replica is currently on display in a new exhibit at the Harvard Semitic Museum in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

In 1925, a joint archaeological expedition between Harvard University and Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts unearthed Hetepheres’s tomb in Giza, Egypt. The room was filled with once-majestic furniture that had deteriorated over millennia. According to the Boston Globe, conservators and craftsman used detailed archaeological notes from the Giza expedition to build copies of some of the tomb’s furniture pieces in the 1930s; today, they sit in the Cairo Museum and in storage at the Museum of Fine Arts. Hetepheres’s inlaid wood-and-gold throne, however—a find that archaeologists say is one of the most elaborate pieces of royal furniture from Egypt’s Old Kingdom—was too complicated to replicate.

In recent years, advances in technology allowed a fresh generation of scholars to pick up where their predecessors left off. To build the intricate chair, an interdisciplinary team at Harvard first created a 3D digital model of the tomb and its artifacts. They then used a computer-controlled, five-axis milling machine to construct an exact likeness of the throne.

Fashioned from cedar, wrapped in gold foil, and fitted with ceramic falcons, flagstaffs, beetles, and arrows, the brand new throne resembles the original down to the last detail. It was also created using techniques that the original builder used thousands of years ago, team members say.

“This is experimental archaeology,” Rus Gant, lead technical artist on the project, told the Boston Globe. “We wanted to know how they made it, not just replicate something that looked like it." 

Thanks to the chair, experts now know more about furniture craftsmanship in ancient Egypt. However, some ancient mysteries—like the meanings behind some of the chair's inlaid symbols—continue to stymie them.

The throne initiative came courtesy of the Giza Project, a comprehensive digital resource of all archaeological finds from the storied Egyptian city. It includes notes, diaries, photographs, and maps, as well as 3D virtual creations of its famous sites. Learn more about the chair on their website, or see it in person; Recreating the Throne of Egyptian Queen Hetepheres is an ongoing exhibit at the Harvard Semitic Museum. 

[h/t Boston Globe]

All images courtesy of YouTube.

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The Most Searched Shows on Netflix in 2017, By State

Orange is the New Black is the new black, at least as far as Netflix viewers are concerned. The women-in-prison dramedy may have premiered in 2013, but it’s still got viewers hooked. Just as they did in 2017, HighSpeedInternet.com took a deep dive into Netflix analytics using Google Trends to find out which shows people in each state were searching Netflix for throughout the year. While there was a little bit of crossover between 2016 and 2017, new series like American Vandal and Mindhunter gave viewers a host of new content. But that didn’t stop Orange is the New Black from dominating the map; it was the most searched show in 15 states.

Coming in at a faraway second place was American Vandal, a new true crime satire that captured the attention of five states (Illinois, Kansas, Massachusetts, Minnesota, and Wisconsin). Even more impressive is the fact that the series premiered in mid-September, meaning that it found a large and rabid audience in a very short amount of time.

Folks in Alaska, Colorado, and Oregon were all destined to be disappointed; Star Trek: Discovery was the most searched-for series in each of these states, but it’s not yet available on Netflix in America (you’ve got to get CBS All Access for that, folks). Fourteen states broke the mold a bit with shows that were unique to their state only; this included Big Mouth in Delaware, The Keepers in Maryland, The OA in Pennsylvania, GLOW in Rhode Island, and Black Mirror in Hawaii.

Check out the map above to see if your favorite Netflix binge-watch matches up with your neighbors'. For more detailed findings, visit HighSpeedInternet.com.

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Monthly Internet Costs in Every Country

Thanks to the internet, people around the world can conduct global research, trade tips, and find faraway friends without ever leaving their couch. Not everyone pays the same price for these digital privileges, though, according to new data visualizations spotted by Thrillist.

To compare internet user prices in each country, cost information site HowMuch.net created a series of maps. The data comes courtesy of English market research consultancy BDRC and Cable.co.uk, which teamed up to analyze 3351 broadband packages in 196 nations between August 18, 2017 and October 12, 2017.

In the U.S., for example, the average cost for internet service is $66 per month. That’s substantially more than what browsers pay in neighboring Mexico ($27) and Canada ($55). Still, we don’t have it bad compared to either Namibia or Burkina Faso, where users shell out a staggering $464 and $924, respectively, for monthly broadband access. In fact, internet in the U.S. is far cheaper than what residents in 113 countries pay, including those in Saudi Arabia ($84), Indonesia ($72), and Greenland ($84).

On average, internet costs in Asia and Russia tend to be among the lowest, while access is prohibitively expensive in sub-Saharan Africa and in certain parts of Oceania. As for the world’s cheapest internet, you’ll find it in Ukraine and Iran.

Check out the maps below for more broadband insights, or view HowMuch.net’s full findings here.

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site HowMuch.net.
HowMuch.net

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site HowMuch.net.
HowMuch.net

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site HowMuch.net.
HowMuch.net

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site HowMuch.net.
HowMuch.net

Map of Internet costs in each country created by information site HowMuch.net.
HowMuch.net

[h/t Thrillist]

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