Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Greek astronomer Hipparchus (120 BC) has been regarded as the father of trigonometry. That is until now.New research by the University of New South Wales on a 3,700-year-old tablet from Southern Iraq published in Historia Mathematica, has debunked the belief that Greeks developed trigonometry, instead pointing to the Babylonians as the true masterminds.The tablet – also known as Plimpton 322 – was discovered in the early 1900s by Edgar Banks, an American archaeologist and diplomat, and had experts stumped.But the team at the School of Mathematics and Statistics in the UNSW Faculty of Science believe they have cracked the code, revealing the Babylonians developed trigonometry 1,500 years earlier than the Greeks, using a sophisticated mathematical method that could very well change the way in which we calculate today.“Our research reveals that Plimpton 322 describes the shapes of right-angle triangles using a novel kind of trigonometry based on ratios, not angles and circles,” said Dr Daniel Mansfield.“It is a fascinating mathematical work that demonstrates undoubted genius. The tablet not only contains the world’s oldest trigonometric table; it is also the only completely accurate trigonometric table, because of the very different Babylonian approach to arithmetic and geometry.“This means it has great relevance for our modern world. Babylonian mathematics may have been out of fashion for more than 3,000 years, but it has possible practical applications in surveying, computer graphics and education.”Researchers believe the tablet dates back to 1822-1762 BC from the ancient Sumerian city of Larsa, predating Hipparchus’ table of chords by over 1,000 years. It could have been used for surveying fields or making architectural calculations to build palaces, temples or step pyramids.READ: A young woman’s quest to find her Greek father in AustraliaA trigonometric table helps the user determine two unknown ratios of a right-angled triangle using just one known ratio.On the Plimpton 322, the 15 rows on the tablet describe a sequence of 15 right-angle triangles, steadily decreasing in inclination. While the left-hand edge of the tablet is broken, researchers believe there were originally six columns and that the tablet was meant to be completed with 38 rows.Today’s trigonometry uses a base of 10, while the Babylonian mathematics used 60. With 60 an easier number to divide by three, experts have found calculations to be more accurate.Dr Wildberger says that not only does the discovery open up new possibilities for modern mathematics research, but also for mathematics education.“With Plimpton 322 we see a simpler, more accurate trigonometry that has clear advantages over our own,” he said.“A treasure-trove of Babylonian tablets exists, but only a fraction of them have been studied yet. The mathematical world is only waking up to the fact that this ancient but very sophisticated mathematical culture has much to teach us.”READ NEXT: Swedish ambassador says ‘return of the Parthenon Marbles to Athens is a question of moral principle’
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram James Gargasoulas, the man who rammed down pedestrians in Melbourne’s Bourke St, was thought of as a bit “crazy” from a young age with some revealing that he displayed sociopathic tendencies from his school years.ABC’s Four Corners profiled the man, showing his long history of criminal behaviour from his school days with problems stemming from a childhood defined by violent punishments from his single father in the opal mining town of Coober Pedy.Gargasoulas and his brother, Angelo, did not have a happy upbringing. His brother states that Gargasoulas struggled at school, attending special education classes and getting picked on by other students. At age 14, he smuggled explosives into school to get back at those giving him a hard time. His problems, however spiralled out of control after he started smoking weed.Speaking to the ABC, Angelo described his brother as a man capable of “extreme violence, especially towards women”.“I’ve seen him drop a woman onto the floor, drag her by the hair, knock a woman unconscious, completely,” Angelo said.In the hours leading to the Bourke St attack that led to the killing of six people, Angelo was also stabbed by his brother.Questions by his own brother are raised as to why Gargasoulas had not been locked up sooner. “It could’ve saved so many lives. It could’ve saved so much drama,” he said.
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The Hellenic Medical Society of Australia (HMSA) recently hosted a medical educational evening for its professional members entitled ‘Brain and Pain’.Doctors from various specialities as well as general practitioners packed out a function room at the QPO restaurant to be informed on the latest updates on the brain and on the topic of chronic pain management.HMSA president A/Professor Marinis Pirpiris introduced the evening and welcomed the generous sponsors of the evening Servier Pharmaceuticals and Delphi Bank. MC Dr Arthur Kokkinias (HMSA Secretary) in turn warmly introduced each of the keynote speakers of the evening.The ‘brain’ part of the evening was presented by Professor Dennis Velakoulis, neuropsychiatrist and director of the Neuropsychiatry Unit at the Royal Melbourne Hospital. He updated the audience on the latest developments of psychiatric presentations of neurological disorders and on genetic and neuroimaging developments. A potpourri of disorders and information was enjoyed by all.The second speaker Dr Nick Christelis, an anaesthetist and pain management specialist, director of Pain Specialists Australia, gave a presentation on the latest developments on the all important topic of chronic and neuropathic pain management. Chronic pain affects and costs our society billions of dollars annually in health care and in lost productivity. Evidence is scant with regard to best practice and ideal interventions.An important link between the two talks was the presented research evidence that psychological aspects of pain assessment and pain management are paramount in achieving optimal outcomes.The presentations were followed by a barrage of questions from the audience highlighting the interest generated by the speakers.HMSA functions have become famous in the local medical community for their warmth, liveliness and congeniality. Doctor members of a variety of medical interests and backgrounds come together to share their Hellenic heritage in a social and educational setting. While HMSA meetings are a unique opportunity for an exchange of ideas and perspectives between GPs and a variety of specialists which in the medical world is a rarity.Upcoming public educational events for 2019 will include a heart awareness seminar, an adolescent mental and physical health seminar (to be held at Alphington Grammar School), an HMSA dementia seminar in conjunction with Fronditha Care (to be held at Oakleigh Grammar School) and a paediatric update on basic life support at the Greek Community school in Bentleigh on 18 June.Doctors who have yet to become members of HMSA are invited to do so at www.hmsa.org.au
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Members of the Pankoaki Brotherhood gathered over the weekend for a special high tea to raise funds for a worthy cause, Kidney Health Australia.The champagne was flowing, accompanying delicious sandwiches, freshly baked scones and speciality cakes that were lovingly prepared and served up by volunteers.A beautiful set up for a great cause.Generous volunteers behind the scenes.Members of the Pankoaki Brotherhood getting behind the cause.A beautiful set up for a great cause.The high tea was a chance to support the fundraising efforts of committee member George Papadopoulos, who together with his son Nick will be participating in the Kidney Kids Kar Rally.Kidney Kids, an initiative of Kidney Health Australia, offers support for children suffering from kidney disease and gives them the chance to attend a special camp with their family, during which all necessary medical staff and equipment are readily available to ensure a pleasant stay.Mr Papadopoulos and his son will depart Melbourne on 7 August, driving from Melbourne to Port Macquarie and then all the way to Rockhampton, returning home on 18 August.Those wishing to donate to the cause can do so through the Pankoaki Brotherhood by calling 0425 740712. All donations will be issued with a receipt from Kidney Health Australia.
The first week of the Greek Community of Melbourne (GCM) Language & Culture Schools’ School Holiday Program can only be described as a success, full of fun and new experiences with a Greek twist.It was a sensory experience, giving children the chance to engage in Greek culture through music, dance, aromas, flavours, as well as arts and crafts.One more week of the program is left with plenty in store to keep the little ones learning, socialising and entertained while on their holiday break.Those who missed the first week can still join in the second program at Alphington Grammar on Tuesday 9 and Wednesday 10 July.Note that the program is suitable for children aged 4-11. For more information and enquiries, visit greekcommunity.com.au/hpREAD: Mobile phone use banned in Victorian state schools to reduce cyber bullying. But how effective will it really be? Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The time of year is fast approaching for the Manasis School of Greek Dance and Culture’s Annual Dinner Dance.The popular event is attended by hundreds, including students and members of the wider Greek Australian community.To cater to increasing demand, for the first time last year the dance was run over two days, and will be the case again this year, but this time both will be held on Saturday evenings.Both nights have a jam-packed programme, which will be identical on both nights, the only difference being the actual dance performances.Hundreds of performers will take to the floor, from students as young as three years of age through to the famed Senior Dance Group, presenting dances from all regions of Greece in traditional costumes. The Seniors will also be presenting their signature routines: The Evolution Bracket and New Modern Bracket.DJ Chris (Original Vibes) will be on the decks, playing a mix of traditional and modern Greek music. Also performing on the night will be the Manasis Band together with other guest musicians, presenting traditional-style folk music with a unique live instrumental floor show featuring klarina, daoulia and the famous goat-head gaida bagpipes.Meanwhile for the first time in 13 years, the dance will be held at a different venue, now at the Nafpaktian Hall in Heatherton.When: Saturday 21 September (Seniors/Adults) & Saturday 5 October (Beginners/Juniors/Intermediates), doors open 6.30 pm, show starts at 7.30 pmWhere: Nafpaktian Hall (2-18 Ross St, Heatherton VIC)Bookings: (03) 9774 7450 or 0423 486 137. Seating is limited. 10 people per table, a few fit groups of 12. Strictly pre-sold tickets.
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram The devastating fires that engulfed seaside towns northeast of Greece killed 102 people on 23 July last year.Victims died in their homes, their cars, or as they tried to get to sea to escape the dangerous flames and fumes propelled by gale-force winds. Some dipped below the waves to stay cool, while others waited for the coastguard and local fishermen to rescue them.A year on, the charred buildings remain as a reminder of the deadly fires, while those that lived through the ordeal are still haunted by memories of the blaze that caused the highest recorded toll from a fire in Greece’s modern history.New Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis went to the seaside village of Mati, one of those affected by the fires, to peruse the burnt remains where 4,000 homes once stood, surrounded by 40,000 pine and olive trees.READ MORE: Fires break out in Rafina and Barnabas, a year following the anniversary of deadly wildfires in GreeceResidents floated candles in the water to remember the survivors that fled to sea. Mr Mitsotakis and other politicians didn’t speak after the service but announcements for relief measures had been made earlier, including no property taxes for five years fore affected homeowners and the release of 31 million euros in an emergency fund for the injured and guaranteeing continuing treatment and medicines for around 140 burn victims.New Greek Health Minister Vassilis Kikilias said he would hold an emergency session of the country’s supreme health council to ensure that silicone, ointments and other required material are available to patients without charge. The state machine has been unprepared to help burn victims recover once discharged.READ MORE: New Greek legislation allows government intervention in natural disasters; and restitution plans for last year’s firesA year on, people are still asking how the natural disaster that claimed lives and destroyed Greece’s vibrant tourist seaside centres, turning them into ghost towns with empty beach fronts. Residents are frustrated with the slow pace of recovery.