Education

# 3,700-year-old Babylonian stone tablet gets translated, changes history

### They were doing trigonometry 1500 years before the Greeks.

via UNSW

Dr. Daniel Mansfield and his team at the University of New South Wales in Australia have just made an incredible discovery. While studying a 3,700-year-old tablet from the ancient civilization of Babylon, they found evidence that the Babylonians were doing something astounding: trigonometry!

Most historians have credited the Greeks with creating the study of triangles' sides and angles, but this tablet presents indisputable evidence that the Babylonians were using the technique 1,500 years before the Greeks ever were.

Mansfield and his team are, understandably, incredibly proud. What they discovered is that the tablet is actually an ancient trigonometry table.

Mansfield said:

"The huge mystery, until now, was its purpose – why the ancient scribes carried out the complex task of generating and sorting the numbers on the tablet. Our research reveals that Plimpton 322 describes the shapes of right-angle triangles using a novel kind of trigonometry based on ratios, not angles and circles. It is a fascinating mathematical work that demonstrates undoubted genius."

"The tablet not only contains the world's oldest trigonometric table; it is also the only completely accurate trigonometric table, because of the very different Babylonian approach to arithmetic and geometry. This means it has great relevance for our modern world. Babylonian mathematics may have been out of fashion for more than 3,000 years, but it has possible practical applications in surveying, computer graphics and education. This is a rare example of the ancient world teaching us something new."

The tablet predates Greek astronomer Hipparchus, who has long been regarded as the father of trigonometry. Mansfield's colleague, Norman Widberger, added:

"Plimpton 322 predates Hipparchus by more than 1,000 years. It opens up new possibilities not just for modern mathematics research, but also for mathematics education. With Plimpton 322 we see a simpler, more accurate trigonometry that has clear advantages over our own."
"A treasure trove of Babylonian tablets exists, but only a fraction of them have been studied yet. The mathematical world is only waking up to the fact that this ancient but very sophisticated mathematical culture has much to teach us."

People were understandably excited by the news.

Some mathematicians actually think studying the Babylonians back then could help us improve the way we do trigonometry today.

Of course, there were the haters...

But all in all, Twitter users were pretty impressed with the Babylonians' skills.

And they figured it out 3,700 years ahead of me...and counting.— Marty (@Marty) 1503631905

Congratulations to Dr. Mansfield and his team on their incredible discovery... and for making trigonometry exciting!

Education

## Sweden’s landmark new proposal will stop the world from mixing it up with Switzerland

### Honestly, do you know the difference?

True

After over a thousand years of peaceful relations, European semi-superpowers Sweden and Switzerland may finally address a lingering issue between the two nations. But the problem isn’t either country’s fault. The point is that the rest of the world can’t tell them apart. They simply don’t know their kroppkakor (Swedish potato dumpling) from their birchermüesli (a Swiss breakfast dish).

This confusion on the European continent has played out in countless ways.

Swedish people who move to the United States often complain of being introduced as Swiss. The New York Stock Exchange has fallen victim to the confusion, and a French hockey team once greeted their Swiss opponents, SC Bern, by playing the Swedish National Anthem and raising the Swedish flag.

Skämtar du med mig? (“Are you kidding me?” in Swedish)

To help the world finally recognize the differences between the two nations, Sweden has created a landmark proposal to end the confusion once and for all.

“If people struggle to separate our two countries, we need to help them. We can’t change the names of our nations, but we can become more distinct. Sweden offers the luxury of a different nature, that’s why we think it’s time to decide who promotes what, and hopefully, we can reach an agreement,” said Susanne Andersson, CEO of Visit Sweden.

The Swedish proposal is simple and practical, just like its citizens. The country hopes to make a clear distinction between the two countries by deciding who talks about what. “We will be able to communicate things like sandbanks, rooftops and silence. Meanwhile, Switzerland will focus on banks, mountain tops, and loud noises,” Andersson said in a statement.

The Northern Lights in Sweden.Photo: David Schreiner/Folio/imagebank.sweden.se

The Swedes hope that people will learn to distinguish Switzerland's technological advancements, such as particle accelerators and luxurious watches, from Sweden’s natural phenomena that, instead of winding you up, help you wind down.

The first draft of the official settlement was presented to Switzerland and can be read at the Visit Sweden website. “We’re hoping that Switzerland will negotiate with us on this important matter. But if they want contemporary fashion, the answer is no. They get to have leather couture, and we think that’s fair,” Andersson said, referencing the yellow-painted leather pants traditionally worn by herdsmen in Appenzeller.

A rooftop in Stockholm, Sweden. Emmie Bolmstedt/Visit Sweden

If Sweden and Switzerland come together on an agreement to distinguish their national identities, it’ll be a big win for the entire world. But, until then, the best way for you to truly learn the difference is to visit Sweden yourself.

Sweden’s calming, beautiful nature will refresh your spirit like no place on Earth. Imagine sailing on its pristine lakes while a sharp breeze runs through your hår (hair). Enjoy a hike in perpetual daylight during the Midnight Sun Period, or feast your ögon (eyes) on the mesmerizing Northern Lights in Swedish Lapland.

Looking for some high-altitude adventure? You and a friend could even take a yodeling tour in the Alps in the shadows of the magnificent Matterhorn. Sounds like fun? Sorry, got you. The Matterhorn is in Switzerland, and Swedish people don’t yodel; it throws off their lagom—a unique brand of Scandinavian chill.

Family

## 15 hilarious parenting comics that are almost too real

### They're funny because they're true.

Fowl Language by Brian Gordon

Brian Gordon is a cartoonist. He's also a dad, which means he's got plenty of inspiration for the parenting comics he creates for his website, Fowl Language (not all of which actually feature profanity).

## He covers many topics, but it's his hilarious parenting comics that are resonating with parents everywhere.

"My comics are largely autobiographical," Gordon tells me. "I've got two kids who are 4 and 7, and often, what I'm writing happened as recently as that very same day."

## Gordon shared 15 of his oh-so-real comics with us. They're all funny 'cause they're true.

Let's get started with his favorite, "Welcome to Parenting," which Gordon says sums up his comics pretty well. "Parenting can be such tedious drudgery," he says, "but if it wasn't also so incredibly rewarding there wouldn't be nearly so many people on the planet."

Truth.

I hope you enjoy these as much as I did.

## 1.

“Welcome to parenting."

All comics are shared here with Gordon's express permission. These comics are all posted on his website, in addition to his Facebook page. You can also find a "bonus" comic that goes with each one by clicking the "bonus" link. Original. Bonus.

## 2.

Eating is never fundamental.

## 4.

I used to be cool.

Naps happen.

## 6.

Rolling with the punches.

Tears happen.

## 8.

It’s time to get up.

## 9.

The benefits of experience.

Is it gas?

## 11.

Everyone gets therapy, yea.

## 12.

Everyone has a role to play.

What’s up doc?

## 14.

Everyone gets a participation ribbon.

## 15.

Perception shifts.

## I love Gordon's comics so much because they're just about the reality of parenting — and they capture it perfectly.

There's no parenting advice, no judgment, just some humor about the common day-to-day realities that we all share.

"I remember being an absolute sleep-deprived wreck, sitting outside a sandwich shop, wolfing down my lunch quickly beside my 1-month-old son, who was briefly resting his lungs between screaming fits.

A rather nosy woman walked up to me and said, all smugly, 'You should enjoy this time while they're easy.' It was the exact worst thing anyone could have said to me in that moment and I just wanted to curl up on the sidewalk and cry."

Who hasn't been on the receiving end of totally unneeded and unwanted advice? That's why Gordon's comics are so welcome: They offer up a space for us to all laugh about the common experiences we parents share.

Here's to Gordon for helping us chuckle (through the tears).

Family

## Kid's outpouring of emotion meeting his baby brother for the first time has us wrecked

### Love at its purest.

Photo by Hu Chen on Unsplash

Meeting a new sibling can go either way, but this big brother's reaction was the sweetest.

We've all seen our fair share of older-sibling-meets-new-baby videos, which are generally pretty darn adorable. But once in a while, one comes along that socks us square in the heart and has us desperately reaching for a tissue.

Brace yourselves, friends, because this is one video that truly requires a tissue warning.

Shared by @brianaarielle89 on TikTok, the video shows a preschooler dressed up in a dinosaur costume entering a hospital room to meet his newborn sibling for the first time. He asks, "Mommy, where is Hudson?" and is guided over to the cot where his baby brother is bundled.

At first, he walks right past him. But then he turns, sees him and simply stares for a few seconds.

A man's voice asks, "What do you think?" and oh, the emotion in his little voice as he breaks into tears.

"Hudsooooon!" he wails. "Hiiii!" And then he cries out the sweetest BFF declaration you'll ever hear.

@brianaarielle89

#fyp #viral #heartwarming #siblings #brothers #babiesoftiktok

Oof, right? This is the purest love there is. What a little sweetheart and what a lucky little brother Hudson is.

I regret to inform you that there is a part two, which is also adorable.

@brianaarielle89

#fyp #babiesoftiktok #brothers #feelings #happycry

"I'm happy crying, okay?" Okay, kiddo. So is everyone else now.

Of course, not all young children are overcome with happiness when they get to meet their younger siblings. In fact, some kids can be downright hostile about it, asking the parents if they can send the baby back or acting out in anger and jealousy. Depending on their age, older siblings might demand more attention than usual or regress in certain developmental milestones, such as potty training.

For parents whose young children didn't gush with love when they met a new sibling, don't worry. Jealousy of babies is totally normal and doesn't mean your kids won't get along eventually. It just takes time to adjust to a new reality and a new dynamic in the household. Dr. Hindie M. Klein recommends tips like referring to the new baby as "our baby," letting the older sibling help in caring for the baby (in ways that are age-appropriate, of course) and providing some special parental one-on-one time with the older child to help kids more easily adjust to a new baby in the house.

Even baby Hudson and his big-hearted bro here will surely have sibling spats of their own over the years. Sibling love is complicated, but it's great to see it start off on such a beautiful note.

Family

## Father of the bride steals the show with his incredibly smooth dance moves

### From the tootsie roll to the dougie, he nailed it all.

Photo by insung yoon on Unsplash

The MC Hammer dance though.

Father and daughter dances are a traditional staple of weddings. They tend to range somewhere between tearfully sweet and hilariously cringey. But sometimes, as was the case of Brittany Revell and her dad Kelly, they can be so freakin’ cool that millions of people become captivated.

Brittany and Kelly’s video, which amassed, I kid you not, more than 40 million views on TikTok, shows the pair grooving in sneakers (Brittany’s were white because, hello, wedding dress) to their “dance through the decades.”

It all began with Young MC’s “Bust a Move,” to give you a clear picture. And bust a move, they did.

Though the duo did a handful of iconic moves—the tootsie roll, the MC Hammer dance, the Carlton, just to name a few—“the dougie,” made famous by Cali Swag District, was the obvious fan favorite.

Brittany is clearly no stranger to busting a move and showed off her skills, but Kelly had the audience (and the internet) absolutely floored. He not only nailed every move, but kept a constant grin from ear to ear.

“Reason number 1838329194920 why I love my dad,” Brittany wrote in her caption.

@bnrevell Reason number 1838329194920 why I love my dad. 🫶🏼🥹 #thatdougietho #fatherdaughter #weddingtok ♬ original sound - Brittany Revell

People in the comments were quick to profess love for Kelly as well. Here are some gems:

“WHO IS THIS LEGEND!”

“I aspire to this level of smooth.”

“Pops got moves!!🔥”

“He really is the main character 🤩🤩”

Others shared praise to both dancers for delivering an unforgettable performance.

“I would absolutely lose my mind if I saw this at a wedding,” wrote one person.

“This is probably THE best TikTok I’ve ever seen. You and your dad are legit rockstars!! Congratulations!!” added another.

Brittany told The Morning Show on Channel 7 that she and Kelly have been learning dances together “for fun in the living room” since she was little. “He has always had some rhythm, but I did not know he could pick up the moves like that,” she quipped. Hey, there’s always something new to learn about dear old dad.

Brittany also shared in an interview with NBC News that people were responding to more than just impressive choreography—it touched them on a heartfelt level.

“I think it’s kind of unique to see a dad of Asian descent be able to open up, let loose and just embrace their American child’s music and culture,” she said, adding that several people who didn’t have relationships with their fathers commended how “inspiring” it was to see the fun Brittany and Kelly created, encouraging them to “be better with their future kids.”

Weddings are a celebration of love, and that can extend beyond the bride and groom. This father expressed his love on the dance floor, and it’s giving us all something to smile about.

Odds are Brittany and her dad are gonna keep posting even more amazing dance videos. You can keep up to date by following Brittany on TikTok here.

Joy

## Owner of plus-size dress shop gifts \$700 prom dress to 'shy' teen after watching her light up

### Creating moments like these is why she opened her store in the first place.

@juicybodygoddess/TikTok

Elyse Monroe found the perfect dress, then found out it costs nothing.

Adolescence is a harrowing time for body image and self-esteem all around, but few milestones are as universally daunting as finding a prom dress. Whether it’s due to budget constraints, not being able to find a dress that fits, or both, what should be a fun event is often viscerally dreaded.

This was certainly the case for Summer Lucille. Lucille told Today.com that growing up, “if you weren’t skinny, there weren’t many options, and it was devastating for me because I’ve always loved fashion.”

She recalled, “I went to my prom looking like a church lady in a suit dress with a jacket because it was the only thing that fit. It was a very sad period in my life.”

Wanting to ensure a more positive experience for others, Lucille opened up her plus-size-only dress shop, Juicy Body Goddess, in 2016. The boutique, based in North Carolina, features mostly Lucille’s own designs of formal dresses up to a size 6X.

Juicy Body Goddess really started gaining traction when Lucille set up a TikTok account sharing truly joyful interactions with customers as they try on different styles.

Besides having an eye for fashion, Lucille is a masterful hype woman, making others feel beautiful with her enthusiastic, heartfelt praises. She clearly loves what she does. Here's one of many, many examples:

@juicybodygoddess I had to get her number so she can model🤩 #plussizefashion #plussizeboutique #birthday #plussizetiktok #juicybodygoddess ♬ original sound - JuicyBodyGoddess

Juicy Goddess’s TikTok presence is how 18-year-old Elyse Monroe found out about the store. Monroe and her family drove nearly six hours for a consultation, determined to find the perfect dress.

Lucille shared with People that Monroe was initially “nervous and shy,” but after trying on a sparkly, form-fitting purple gown, everything changed.

"When she got into that purple dress, she lit up," Lucille told People.

There was still a budget problem, however. Monroe’s family could only afford to pay \$400. The dress was \$700.

Thankfully, Lucille had one more surprise up her sleeve.

A now viral TikTok video shows the Monroe family approach the register, asking how much the dress would cost.

Lucille can be heard saying, “This dress is \$700…but it’s free.”

Yeah, as you can probably expect, this leaves the teen and her family a bit emotional. Watch below:

@juicybodygoddess I didn't cry until I did edit #plussize #plussizetiktok #juicybodygoddess #plussizefashion ♬ original sound - JuicyBodyGoddess

The video has had an overwhelming number of responses. Many commiserated with their own painful prom memories and applauded Lucille for her generosity. Some were even inspired to perform their own act of kindness by donating. Lucille told People that since posting the video, there has been \$12,000 worth of gift card purchases. Yowza.

This is such an amazing example of what can happen when we celebrate uniqueness, spread generosity, and prioritize making everyone feel worthy of praise.

If you’d like to purchase a gift card from Juicy Body Goddess, click here. Or, if you wanna just follow along on some gorgeous fittings, you can find the Juicy Body Goddess TikTok here.

Family

## A fireman’s children wrote him a hilariously honest obituary he would have loved

The fireman William Ziegler of New Orleans, Louisiana.

After you're gone, people will probably forget the exact things you said to them while you were alive, but they'll never forget how you made them feel.

Unfortunately, when people write obituaries that sum up a person's life they're often just a chronological list of factual details of their lives such as where they lived, where they worked, and how many children they had.

While those facts are important, they don't really explain the type of person the deceased was or how they made people feel. An obituary for fireman William Ziegler of New Orleans, Louisiana has attracted a lot of attention for how it hilariously summed up the life of a man who was a real raconteur.

Zeigler's daughter, Sharah Currier, said that he used to read funny obituaries to his children, so they decided to write one that would make him laugh. "He would have loved this," she told the Times-Picayune. "He probably would have forwarded this obituary to us.”

Zeigler began his career as a volunteer in the U.S. Navy.

William volunteered for service in the United States Navy at the ripe old age of 17 and immediately realized he didn't much enjoy being bossed around. He only stuck it out for one war. Before his discharge, however, the government exchanged numerous ribbons and medals for various honorable acts. Upon his return to the City of New Orleans in 1971, thinking it best to keep an eye on him, government officials hired William as a fireman.

He then continued his life of service by joining the fire department.

After twenty-five years, he suddenly realized that running away from burning buildings made more sense than running toward them. He promptly retired. Looking back, William stated that there was no better group of morons and mental patients than those he had the privilege of serving with (except Bob, he never liked you, Bob).

Ziegler's children believe that he's in heaven with his alcoholic dog.

Following his wishes, there will not be a service, but well-wishers are encouraged to write a note of farewell on a Schaefer Light beer can and drink it in his honor. He was never one for sentiment or religiosity, but he wanted you to know that if he owes you a beer, and if you can find him in Heaven, he will gladly allow you to buy him another. He can likely be found forwarding tasteless internet jokes (check your spam folder, but don't open these at work). Expect to find an alcoholic dog named Judge passed out at his feet.

His children end the obituary stressing the fact that he's actually dead.

Unlike previous times, this is not a ploy to avoid creditors or old girlfriends. He assures us that he is gone. He will be greatly missed.

You can read the whole obituary at the Times-Picayune.

More

## Ever wonder why people 100 years ago died so much younger? It's these 14 reasons.

### 1796. That's when we invented vaccines. An English doctor named Edward Jenner took incredible risks to try to rid his world of smallpox. Because of his efforts and the efforts of scientists like him, the only thing between deadly diseases like the ones below and extinction are people who refuse to vaccinate their kids. Don't be that parent.

FACT CHECK TIME! This article originally appeared on 11.21.14 and this infographic is based on data from 2012.

Unfortunately, because of the misinformation from the anti-vaccination movement, some of these diseases have trended up in a really bad way over the past several years.

Wellness involves a lot of personal choices and the tradeoff between personal liberty and shared public good.

Measles is the starkest example. There were about 61 cases of measles in all of 2012, but in just the first seven months of 2014, there have been nearly 600.

As this chart shows, vaccinations are not like taxes rates or even freedom of speech. The impact of one's personal health choices can have a significant impact on the population around them, in their communities and even on a national level. It makes that trade-off all the more complicated and one not easily distilled into one convenient political or religious ideology.

Obviously, the topic of vaccinations has become immensely more complicated since the onset of COVID-19 in 2020. But history teaches us valuable lessons and information is power. No matter how you feel about vaccines today, this chart is a reminder that medical science can be used for incredible good. Without breakthrough vaccinations in the past, many of us would likely not be here to have the debate about our personal choices now and into the future.