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South African Doctor Cures Deafness With First-Ever Middle Ear Transplant

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The South African Department of Health has announced that a team of South African doctors have successfully completed the first ever middle ear transplant that restores hearing caused by certain types of deafness.

  • Reflect On:

    Does our current economic system truly support innovation? Does it value things that truly make humanity thrive? Or does it seem like there is always a need for us to convince someone to invest in something that is obviously important for society?

The South African Department of Health revealed earlier this year that a team of South African doctors have successfully performed the first-ever transplant of a patient’s middle ear, allowing them to once again hear. The surgery can be performed on people of any age and sets out to cure deafness caused by physical damage, infection in the middle ear as well as congenital birth defects and metabolic diseases.

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Once again we see the value and innovation of 3D printing at work as this new invention helps to reconstruct the broken bones of a middle ear. Unlike other forms of transplants, this new innovation is seen as a long-term solution to conductive hearing loss.

It was 40-year-old Thabo Moshiliwa who lost his hearing in a car accident that underwent the first ever surgery dreamt up by the medical team at the University of Pretoria’s Steve Biko Academic Hospital. This first ever surgery lasted about an hour and a half. The next patient to receive this treatment was 62-year-old Simon Bohale, who had an underdeveloped middle ear. His occupation as a welder also contributed to worsening his hearing loss. “I am excited. I have had two surgeries before but was not 100% okay. I cannot wait to hear people when they speak to me.” said Bohale.

The most influential person behind this new discovery was Professor Mashudu Tshifularo who had been studying conductive hearing loss over the past decade. When his interest turned to 3D printing technologies as a means for solving the intricate physical issues associated with certain types of hearing loss, he realized this highly useful discovery.

In the South African Department of Health press release, Tshifularo stated:

“By replacing only the ossicles that aren’t functioning properly, the procedure carries significantly less risk than known prostheses and their associated surgical procedure.

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We will use titanium for this procedure, which is biocompatible. We use an endoscope to do the replacement, so the transplant is expected to be quick, with minimal scarring.”

Tshifularo told local radio station Jacaranda FM:

“This was one of our patients we have been waiting for, for this reconstruction for almost three years now because they are not affordable … [but] we have done something new in the world and people will remember us for that.”

 Tshifulara understands that this new treatment must become accessible and affordable for poor and working-poor patients for its benefits to fully be realized. This includes those who use South Africa’s public hospitals.

Tshifularo continued:

“Because we are doing it in the country and we are going to manufacture here, it has to be affordable for our people in state hospitals.

It will be very accessible because as long as we can train the young doctors to be able to do this operation, then it will be accessible for them as well.”

Now it comes down to funding and support to continue moving forward with making this treatment accessible. The university’s Department of Otorhinolaryngology (Ear, Nose and Throat) requires government funding and private sponsors to ensure this innovation continues forth.

More good news, South African Minister of Health Aaron Motsoaledi pledged that the Department of Health will “do everything in our power to assist and mobilize resources to make sure that Prof. Tshifularo gets all the help he needs for this far-reaching innovation.”

The Takeaway

There is no shortage of innovative people and incredible creativity on this planet, but does our current economic system truly support this innovation? Does it value things that truly make humanity thrive? Or does it seem like there is always a need for us to convince someone to invest in something that is obviously important for society?

The truth is, we hold back our own healing and thrivability as a species by accepting the belief that our current economic system is the way to go.

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Proposed ‘Smart’ Forest City In Mexico Would Be 100% Food & Energy Self-Sufficient

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Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Architecture firm Stefano Boeri Architetti has proposed a design for a 'Smart' Forst City in Cancun and is awaiting its approval.

  • Reflect On:

    Could this be a model for future cities?

Italian architect Stefano Boeri has unveiled impressive plans to create a forested smart forest city near Cancun, Mexico. It is said to be an example of the potential for cities in the future. If you’re like me, there are aspects of this that are quite impressive, but the word ‘smart city’ may sound some alarm bells. Let’s address this as we go.

There is a 557 hectare site near the Mexican city of Cancun where currently proposed is a huge shopping mall. Previously, this piece of land was partly occupied by a sand quarry, but if Boeri’s firm gets the nod, their design for a smart forest city will bring 7.5 million plants, including numerous species of trees, shrubs and bushes chosen by botanist and landscape architect Laura Gatti.

“Smart Forest City Cancun is a Botanical Garden, within a contemporary city, based on Mayan heritage and in its relationship with the natural and sacred world, […] An urban ecosystem where nature and city are intertwined and act as one organism.” said Stefano Boeri Architetti.

“Indeed the effort of the smart Forest City of Cancun could make our world a better place, reducing significantly the negative impacts on the environment, possibly being a pioneer for a new kind of human settlement, a man made city for nature and biodiversity,” said the firm.

The city would grow food, could be home to up to 130,000 people and would even collect and process its own water to irrigate the farmland. The city would also be energy sufficient through the use of solar technology.

“We have designed different types of housing that could include all the types of inhabitants,” […] “This will include affordable buildings for young students, researchers, and professors.” said the firm.

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Beyond city living, their design enables the city to become a centre for advanced research in the areas of bio-healthcare; astrophysics and planetary science; coral reef restoration; precision farming and regenerative technology; smart city; and mobility and robotics.

“The idea behind this project is to create a district dedicated to research and innovation (the fields will be: molecular biology, robotics, IT, etc) where academic institutions and research centres meet, along with big multinational corporations and the new generations of students and researchers, Mexican and from all over the world,” said the firm.

Boeri’s team presented the concept’s masterplan and project to the Cancun region and the Municipality in March of 2019. They are awaiting approval.

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

Image credit: Stefano Boeri Architetti

‘Smart’ City?

Naturally, the discussion of utilizing technology to collect data that manages things in everyday life brings up some interesting questions. What technology is required to collect this data? Will it become an EMF hot zone? Are we talking 5G type infrastructures? Not only that, who will hold and govern this data? And what else will be done with it? These are all fair questions when you consider what has happened in recent years with data and when you consider the dangers of concentrated wireless networks as we currently build them today.

We get at least one answer from the firm:

Data in the smart city will be managed with “full respect of the privacy of the citizens […] Big data management is used to improve the Governance of the city, hence, the life of its citizens.

While we don’t necessarily get answers regarding the use of wireless technology, I do want to bring up a conversation that I feel is important to have. Centralization of things like data for the means of improving life within a city is an acceptable way of packaging an idea that in the ‘wrong’ hands can be used to limit the population of that city. I get that argument. But what I’d like to share is the important nuance that many of the companies who have controlled decisions, abused people’s data, and monopolized utilities due to centralization have done so from a state of being that all may not operate from when ideas are centralized in some way.

What I mean by this is, having a central system that collects data around energy usage, food consumption, water consumption and so forth are not necessarily bad things as they are necessary to operate the city. Technology can be a useful tool in solving many of the challenges we face in everyday life, and it is integral in creating a world where we wouldn’t even need to work to survive. But what does that technological future look like? That is what we must discuss as a whole. We need this not to be a black and white issue, but one that seeks to create a discussion around harmonious technology design and usage such that it does not cause harm to human and planetary health and yet can advance well into the future.

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Scientists Uncovered 143 More Huge Ancient Drawings In Nazca, Peru

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TWO NEWLY DISCOVERED GEOGLYPHS IN THE NAZCA REGION. IMAGE: YAMAGATA UNIVERSITY/IBM JAPAN

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A team of researchers from Yamagata University in Japan has just come across 143 More Huge Ancient Drawings In Nazca, Peru.

  • Reflect On:

    Hows were these done? Who were they done for? Did they draw them the way they did because they thought someone from the sky would be looking down upon them?

Nazca, Peru has become famous for those who like to peer into the world of unsolved mysteries. Take for example the Nazca Lines, a series of large ancient geoglyphs ranging in size, with the largest being 1200 feet long. The world is full of interesting unsolved mysteries that question what we think we know about human history and new discoveries are constantly being made, many of which receive very little attention. This really goes to show just how little we know of human history and how new discoveries show us that there are so many variables that we really need to take into consideration when contemplating it.

Nobody really knows their purpose, and the more one looks into it the more baffling they become.

Experts have pronounced upon the antiquity of Nazca, basing their opinions on fragments of pottery found embedded in the lines and on radiocarbon results form various organic remains unearthed here. The dates conjectured range between 350 BC and AD 600. Realistically, they tell us nothing about the age of the lines themselves, which are inherently as undatable as the stones cleared to make them. All we can say for sure is that the most recent are at least 1400 years old, but it is theoretically possible that they could be far more ancient than that – for the simple reason that the artefacts from which such dates are derived could have been brought to Nazca by later peoples. – Graham Hancock, Fingerprints of the Gods

The latest news is that scientists have recently uncovered 143 more giant ancient drawings in Peru. They did so with the help of artificial intelligence and satellites. Researchers spotted a number of ‘geoglyphs’ depicting animals, people and objects.  (source)

The discovery comes via a team of researchers from Yamagata University in Japan.

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These new geoglyphs were identified through fieldwork and analyzing high-resolution 3D data, among other activities conducted up to 2018. The biomorphic geoglyphs are thought to date back to at least 100 BC to AD 300. Additionally, in a feasibility study carried out from 2018 to 2019 together with IBM Japan, the university discovered one new geoglyph by developing an AI model on the AI server IBM Power System AC922 configured with the deep learning platform IBM Watson Machine Learning Community Edition (formerly known as IBM PowerAI) . This study explored the feasibility of AI’s potential to discover new lines, and introduced the capability to process large volumes of data with AI, including high-resolution aerial photos, at high speeds. This represented the first glyph at the site discovered by an AI. (Press release).

Image credits: Yamagata University

Image credits: Yamagata University

Image credits: Yamagata University

Image credits: Yamagata University

Image credits: Yamagata University

The Takeaway

It’s amazing to look back into ancient history and know that we still have so much to discover. These drawings are quite something, and especially hard to do given the size of them and how the makers, supposedly, and no way of having an Ariel view. It’s quite perplexing, and there are many theories. There are some truly remarkable findings all over Peru, even more mysterious than these lines, that still bare no explanation. Theories range from an airfield, all the way to some sort of astronomical significance.

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Alternative News

The Starchild Skull Artifact Encourages A Reassessment Of Darwin’s Theory of Evolution

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The Starchild skull artifact is one of many that has been ignored by the mainstream, and one of many that calls into question Darwin's theory of evolution.

  • Reflect On:

    Why have so many discoveries, like this one, been completely ignored by mainstream academia and mainstream media? What is going on here?

The skull was discovered in 1930 in a mine tunnel about 100 miles southwest of Chihuahua, Mexico, out in the middle of nowhere, by a teenage girl. She assumed the Starchild was simply a human with a deformed skull, most likely from the result of cradle boarding.

The young girl then brought the skull back home with her to Texas where she kept it for the rest of her life. It was not until 60 years later before her death in the 1990s when she passed it on to some friends, who in turn passed it on to Ray and Melanie Young of El Paso, Texas in 1998. Melanie Young, a neonatal nurse, was intrigued to learn what had caused the skulls unusual deformity.

Could it have been a deformed head from cradle boarding, a possible genetic mutation, or natural phenomena? She approached several of her colleagues at the hospital where she worked, and while all dismissed it as some sort of deformity, none could give her an explanation as to what condition could have caused it.

After speculating the possibilities that this skull could be a new species unknown to the scientific community, Melanie sought out the assistance of Lloyd Pye, an author and researcher in the field of alternative news who was well connected in the medical field.

One of the main issues was to determine whether or not this skull could have been deformed through the practice of cradle boarding or cranial deformation. Cradle Boarding is the practice of strapping infants into cradleboards, which causes the child’s soft occipital bone (at the rear of the skull) to flatten like the board it is pressed against. It’s important to note that cradle boarding will leave physical signs on the bones of the skull, and none of them can change the shape or position of the inion (the small bump at the rear of all human skulls). The Starchild not only has no inion but also the occipital bone shows no signs of impressions from cradle boarding either.

Credit the Field Reports

In 2004, a team of 11 specialists headed by Dr. Ted J. Robinson investigated the Starchild Skull in an attempt to identify a deformity, illness, or any other natural explanation for the skull. From a maxilla fragment of the skull, they took X-Rays, CT scans, performed a 3-dimensional scan, and discussed and researched the skull’s physical characteristics. You can view the study here.

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The study concluded that the Starchild Skull was unlike any specimen in recorded medical history, and notably that its unusual characteristics are not the result of artificial cranial deformation. The Starchild Skull is not the result of artificial shaping.

Here are some of the main points determined from the study:

  • Carbon 14 dating of the skull places its age at 900 years ago.
  • It is lighter and weighs about half of the weight of a human adult skull while the cranial capacity is about 1600 cc, which is 400 cc. larger than an average human adult.
  • It is composed of a bony material which is so hard that a standard Dremel blade had great difficulty cutting into it.

 Dr. Robinson’s team also concluded that “the extreme flattening of the skull was caused by its natural growth pattern.”

Another study revealed by researchers Chase Kloetzke and Kerry McClure found more fascinating data about the skull:

  • The Starchild Skull is 5 years old
  • The debunking theory: hydrocephalus explains the Skull’s shape. This theory cannot be ruled out nor ignored. However, a hydrocephalic anomaly should appear symmetrical, which affects the entire skull. The Starchild Skull does not display the symmetrical “ballooning effect” that would include the back of the skull.
  • Moreover, its genetic origin was said to come from the haplogroup Q which is a determinant of Native Americans from South America.

From the study reviewed by Kloetzke and McClure, the scientists’ concluding statement was, “the investigation and compiling the entirety of the scientific data from the many scientists involved, we can safely say that the Starchild Skull is not alien, nor a hybrid of a human and alien. He was 100% a human male child with profound deformities.” View the study here.

With the DNA results concluding it is indeed human, this may throw out the alien hypothesis. However, this skull brings up questions about our currently accepted view of human evolution. A human species whose skull (at the age of 5) is 400cc larger than an average human skull is fascinating. Not to mention we’re looking at a brain size that was a third larger than the human skull.

Another interesting report about the skull comes from archaeologist Aaron Judkins, PhD, Starchild Skull Final Report

The Takeaway

The implications of these findings are fascinating because it makes us rethink the human story. More importantly, why aren’t these archaeological findings being aired on CNN or BBC? Why isn’t this story being featured in the prestigious scientific journal Nature? This isn’t the first time that Darwin’s theory has been disproven and shut down by mainstream science. Look at this story published in 2018 discussing the cover-up of Giants in North America. These spectacular findings should be celebrated and accepted by archeologists because they slowly bind the earth’s real puzzle pieces together.

Related CE  Article:  Prominent Yale Professor Explains How Darwin’s Theory of Evolution Doesn’t Match The Science

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