Evidence of Modern Astronomy in Ancient Babylon

From The New York Times:

Ancient Babylon, situated in what is now Iraq, south of Baghdad, was a thriving metropolis, a center of trade and science. Early Babylonian mathematicians who lived between 1800 B.C. and 1600 B.C. had figured out, for example, how to calculate the area of a trapezoid, and even how to divide a trapezoid into two smaller trapezoids of equal area.

For the most part, Babylonians used their mathematical skills for mundane calculations, like figuring out the size of a plot of land. But on some tablets from the later Babylonian period, there appear to be some trapezoid calculations related to astronomical observations.

A fascinating article which, due to the discovery of the meaning of some new tablets, disproves the notion that calculus was a technique discovered by scholars in England and France.

Is there life elsewhere in the Universe?

This is a summary of the discussion between The Promised Messiah and a Professor of Astronomy from Australia about the existence of life elsewhere in the Universe.