Hakai Magazine discusses the interesting relationship between humans and seashells, going beyond art and collections.
Humans’ affection for shells is older than our species. Half a million years ago, Homo erectus, a precursor to modern Homo sapiens, sharpened the edge of a freshwater mussel shell on what’s now the Indonesian island of Java. Archaeologists found this simple tool among a pile of shells surrounding Homo erectus bones, invoking a vision of an archaic human squatting in the jungle, prying open mussels and slurping down the calories he needed to survive.
Homo erectus weren’t just using mussels for tools and food, though. Among the shells, archaeologists also found one bearing a remarkable zigzag pattern. Analysis revealed it to be the world’s oldest-known engraving, predating similar carvings by 300,000 years. That means before Neanderthals painted abstract designs onto cave walls in Spain, before people even mastered the art of making fire, someone created beauty by drawing on a shell, projecting some part of themselves onto the natural world.
8-6-2021 (August 6, 2021) is the Snakiest day of the year and it’s also this year’s CircuitPython Day! The day highlights all things CircuitPython and Python on Hardware. See you there!
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.