W5 Reflection Post

In the article, “Top 10 discoveries of 2015”, they discuss a number of interesting discoveries. Among all, I found the “Tracing Slave Origins” to be the best discovery. I personally find it very amazing that scientists can look at some human bones and remains and then tell us so much about the history of it. The researchers, with the help of, some new technique they developed were able to identify the origins of three African slaves. They were able to make out that two out of them were men and one woman. Moreover by using some highly advanced genome sequencing techniques they were able to tell that one of them was from a Bantu-speaking population of Cameroon. And the others were from non-Bantu-speaking regions of Nigeria and Ghana. I know that DNA contains a lot of valuable information and scientists can extract a lot of important information, but so much, I could have never imagined. Even the researchers were surprised that they were able to, so precisely locate genetic origins of these people.


I picked this as the best discovery as I think this is most important one too. Researchers found a new way to trace origins of humans which is a new step in archaeology. Being from an engineering field, I find it very interesting that these new technological advancement can help know us more about our history. One day, I would also like contribute to this in some fashion.


Two other articles, “Mythological Mercury Pool” and “A New Human Relative” also stirred up my interest. I have always been fascinated with the discoveries about the pyramids around the world. No one has ever reached a conclusion as to what the real purpose was. Everyday year we learn something new about them which only intrigues me more. The discovery of liquid mercury inside the chambers is sure very surprising. In the other article they discovered a whole new species of humans which existed 2.5 million years ago. We talk about species of animals, birds, etc. But to think about another human species? They discovered a new specie known as “Homo Naledi” in the deep caves of south Africa. The pathway was so narrow that it was only seven inches at a certain point. They had to call a special team to dig up the specimens. They retrieved a total of 1,500 specimens from inside the cave. The combination of characteristics this particular specie had was very surprising to the archaeologists.

2 thoughts on “W5 Reflection Post

  1. I also found “Tracing Slave Origins” to be THE best discovery. It is very cool to hear your perspective on why you think that article was the most interesting. I am a finance major, so I cannot relate to your reasoning; however, I am passionate about learning more about genetics.

    I did not have either the “Mythological Mercury Pool” or “A New Human Relative” in my top favorites list, but I see why you did. It’s amazing how mind-boggling all of these 10 articles are. They are also all important in my opinion. Technology is advancing, and archaeology is advancing with it.

  2. I have the same interest with you, which made me choose this article, “Tracing Slave Origins” as my #1. I was really attracted with the way archaeologists started to use the new coming technology to analyze human skeletons. Also, the detail they gave out of genetic materials are so cool, such as the ability to differentiate between Bantu-speaking population or not. I believe that one day, not so long from now, next-generation sequencing technology will be one of the popular tools used by archaeologists.

    After I read this article, it intrigues me to learn more about how this technology actually work. I also started to think about other technologies in molecular biology, which might be useful in archaeology as a tool in analyzing human remains.

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