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SCI 1030 Science and Society Fall 2010 Dr Ian Balcom

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History of Science refers to the study of protoscience in ancient history, prior to the development of science in the Middle Ages.

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Mesopotamia Mesopotamian people invented many technologies including metal and copper-working, glass and lamp making, textile weaving, flood control, water storage, and irrigation. They were also one of the first Bronze age people in the world. They developed from copper, bronze, and gold on to iron. Palaces were decorated with hundreds of kilograms of these very expensive metals. Also, copper, bronze, and iron were used for armor as well as for different weapons such as swords, daggers, spears, and maces

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Astronomy Even today, astronomical periods identified by Mesopotamian scientists are still widely used in Western calendars: – the solar year, – the lunar month, – the seven-day week.

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Agriculture Advances in irrigation Domestication of plants

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Egypt Significant advances in ancient Egypt included astronomy, mathematics and medicine the roots of the scientific method can also be traced back to the ancient Egyptians.

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Mathematics The earliest attested examples of mathematical calculations date to the predynastic period, and show a fully developed numeral system They understood basic concepts of algebra and geometry, and could solve simple sets of simultaneous equations.

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Library of Alexandria The city of Alexandria library was damaged by fire when it fell under Roman rule, being completely destroyed before 642. With it a huge amount of antique literature and knowledge was lost

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Edwin Smith Papyrus

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Persia was a cradle of science in earlier times Persians made important contributions to algebra and chemistry, invented the wind-power machine, and the first distillation of alcohol Qanat (a water management system used for irrigation) originated in pre-Achaemenid Persia. – The oldest and largest known qanat is in the Iranian city of Gonabad which, after 2,700 years, still provides drinking and agricultural water to nearly 40,000 people

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Qanat

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Early Persian Medicine

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Greco-Roman the inquiry into the workings of the universe took place both in investigations aimed at such practical goals as establishing a reliable calendar or determining how to cure a variety of illnesses and in those abstract investigations known as natural philosophy

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Plato and Aristotle prod uced the first systematic discussions of natural philosophy Plato's student Aristotle introduced empiricism and the notion that universal truths can be arrived at via observation and induction, thereby laying the foundations of the scientific method

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Antikythera

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Science in India Mathematics- Aryabhata (476-550) introduced a number of trigonometric functions (including sine, versine, cosine and inverse sine),trigonometric tables, and techniques and algorithms of algebra Astronomy: The first textual mention of astronomical concepts comes from the Vedas, religious literature of India Medicine: Findings from Neolithic graveyards in what is now Pakistan show evidence of proto-dentistry among an early farming culture Metallurgy: The wootz, crucible and stainless steels we re invented in India

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