Sunday, February 19, 2006

6,500 year old voice recording

Almost unbelievably, Belgian researchers have managed reproduce sounds by using scans of the grooves in 6,500 year old pottery, originally produced by the vibrations of the tools used to make the pot. The sounds recorded in the pottery include the voices and laughter of the people making the pot. Absolutely amazing stuff, does anyone have a link to a journal article for this one?

MP4 File (in French)

Via Make: Magazine

Update: Totally unbelievable, it's an April Fool's hoax...

Update: Apparently the idea was also the basis for a short story by Gregory Benford called "Time Shards".


  1. In an email Pat Galea wrote,

    re the voices "recovered" from the groove in the pot. It's a hoax.

    If you look at the source site the title reads "Poisson d'avril...".

    Neat idea though. There was a short article in Omni magazine sometime back in the 80s about some scientists who were genuinely trying to do this. I wonder if that's where these folks got the idea for the gag?

  2. This was also a subplot on "CSI" not too long ago -- the sounds of a murder were recorded onto a pot as the hapless victim made a vase. Not a very good episode as I recall.

  3. Anonymous5:43 am

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