Fridaygram: Dead Sea Scrolls online, monument climbing, dinosaur feathers

SEP 30, 2011
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By Scott Knaster, Google Code Blog Editor

The Dead Sea Scrolls were lost in the Judean desert for more than 2000 years before being rediscovered in 1947. Now The Digital Dead Sea Scrolls project makes five of the ancient documents available online to everyone.

The online scrolls contain incredibly high-resolution photography (up to 1200 megapixels) and an English translation along with the original Hebrew text. Looking through the scrolls online is a remarkable mashup of ancient artifacts and modern technology.

Not everything can be done online: sometimes you need to be there. When a magnitude 5.8 earthquake struck near Washington, D.C. last August, the Washington Monument suffered visible damage. This week the U. S. National Park Service sent its "difficult access team" to rappel up and down the monument to check for damage. Civil Engineer Emma Cardini seemed to enjoy the task and was quoted as saying "It’s really cool to see the planes flying under you". See, that’s why it’s great to be an engineer.

Birds fly, too – but dinosaurs with feathers? Check out this news from Canada about the discovery of amber-bound feathers that belonged to dinosaurs and birds from the late Cretaceous period.

Fridaygram is a weekly post containing a cool Google-related announcement and a couple of fun science-based tidbits. But no cake.