Thursday, September 17, 2020

Wednesday, September 2, 2020


People began to settle Egypt about 10,000 B.C. These people learned to grind grains while mostly abandoning their hunter-gatherer lifestyle. This is technically the beginning of the Neolithic ("New Stone Age") period, where humans first learned how to use grains. Coming out of the previous period of glaciation, 15,000 years ago, the climate in the Fertile Crescent, which included the Nile River, became ideal for farming,

There is a small amount of evidence of cattle usage going back to 8,000 BC, but this didn't really get going until about 4,500 BC. During this period there were locally ruled cities along the entire length of the Nile. Eventually, there would be northern and southern kingdoms, which were untied by force in 3,100 BC, and this began the dynastic period of the Pharaohs.

Egypt was conquered by the Persians in 525 BC and conquered again by Alexander the Great in 332 BC. This continued till 30 BC when they were conquered by the Romans. Egypt began shifting to Christianity. During the late Roman period from the 4th to 6th centuries, they would be ruled by the Byzantine Empire, which had split from the Roman Empire. In 640 AD Egypt was conquered by the Muslims. It would be conquered by the Ottoman Empire in 1517 and conquered by the Napolean Bonaparte (the French) in 1798. Egypt was conquered by the British in 1882 and remained under their control until 1954 when the Egyptian Republic was established.

Egypt is one of the oldest examples of farming and human civilization.

Best wishes,

John Coffey

Friday, August 28, 2020

Alexandre Dumas - Wikipedia

The Google Doodle is devoted to Alexandre Dumas, who wrote The Count of Monte Cristo, and The Three Musketeers.

Saturday, August 15, 2020

Days of the week

'There is one major theme that binds together all the days of the week—all of them are named after gods. Furthermore, out of the seven days of the week, six of the days are named after Germanic and Norse gods.

Sunday is named after the Germanic sun goddess Sunna. Monday is named after the Germanic moon god, Máni. Tuesday is named after the Norse god of combat, Týr. Wednesday is named after Germanic god and soul-tender, Woden. Thursday is named after the Norse god of thunder, Thor. Finally, Friday is named after the Norse goddess of foresight and wisdom, Frigg.

This leaves us with Saturday, the only day of the week whose name cannot be traced back to either Germanic or Norse deities. It's the only day of the week that retains its Roman origin in English and is named after the Roman god Saturn. As it stands, Saturday is "Saturn's Day", which is a far more noble name than we would have had if we had retained the old Norse designation—Saturday would instead be laugardagr or, literally, "washing-day".'


Friday, July 17, 2020


I had to explain this one to a ton of people on Facebook.  I got it on the first try.  The guy who posted said that it took him 6 or 7 tries.

What I don't like about these problems is that they change the pictures in the last line, requiring us to infer the values and confusing the solver. It is not just a matter of simple algebra.  

Best wishes,

John Coffey

Monday, January 13, 2020

Can This Deadly New Virus Destroy the Human Race?

Many of the recent scary diseases have come from China, which makes sense given the large population base and population density. More than half the world's population lives within a circle in Southern Asia including China and India.

The original Game of Life was incredibly dark

Best wishes,

John Coffey