What Ancient Rome Really Looked Like

I’m very interested in ancient cultures and all we have that tells us how things used to look are ruins, some art, and some descriptions by people who lived during those times. There’s a project called Rome Reborn that allows us to see what Rome most likely looked like in 320 AD.

I found this video at this website.

The video is quite fascinating, but it makes me wonder about other places. For example, what did ancient Athens look like? Or Constantinople? Or London a few hundred years ago? Or Paris? How about Edo during the time that Edo Castle was still towering over the city? What did Angkor Wat look like when it was in its heyday? Or Machu Picchu? Or Tenochtitlan? So many to wonder about.

What other ancient cities would you like to see recreated in this way? Let me know in the comments below.

 

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Leap Year Explained Simply

It’s Leap Day today, and that means people born on February 29th finally get to have a birthday. But why do we have Leap Years? What’s the purpose? Well, it ensures that our seasons don’t drift.

You see, it takes the Earth 365.256363004 days to orbit the sun (this is known as the sidereal year). The calendar year is 365 days. But every 4 years, we have an extra day. So, we add a day to the years that can be divided by 4. This year is 2016, and is divisible by 4.

Sounds simple, doesn’t it? But it gets a bit complicated.  This accounts for 365.25 days. But what about the extra 0.006363004 days? This accumulates, and after 400 years, it equals about 3 days extra. So, we have 3 too many Leap Days every 400 years. So what do we do? We just drop the Leap Days that happen on century years, but keep the ones that can be divided by 400. As a result, the year 2000 was a Leap Year, but 1900 and 2100 are not.

Leap years fall on years that can be divided by 4, except if they can be divided by 100 (not including the ones that can be divided by 400). This balances the calendar and seasons, and we don’t have any drift.

But why is it called Leap Year? Well, in normal years, let’s say that March  31st is a Monday, then the next year it’s a Tuesday, and then it’s a Wednesday the following year. But then, on a Leap Year, we leap over the next day (Thursday) so it’s on a Friday. And that is why we call it a Leap Year.

Any questions?

Only Thirty-One Days to Go

Just a month to go until we go to Canada. But before that, we went on a little vacation. I made a video talking all about that. You can watch it here:

I didn’t mention in the video that I also recorded a lot of videos for A Taste of Japan. There should be four videos to come, though probably not until after we’ve moved to Canada. I have a lot more other videos to do before I get to them.

Hard to believe it’s only a month until Canada. I definitely need to get a job at a travel agency so we can travel to Japan often.