Interestingly, one of the most popular search hits to this blog is "Kari Byron". In case you don't know, she's one of the crew of Mythbusters, which is one of the coolest shows on TV at the moment. There's very little information on the 'Net about her, which is probably why her desperate fans come here. Sorry, guys (and gals, I suppose, but probably mostly guys)... I don't know anything more than you do.
But the theory in a recent episode about ancient batteries that that they may be been tied to idols or shrines to create a "religious experience" for worshipers was a very interesting hypothesis! I'd always assumed that batteries were used for electroplating, but the Mythbusters theory is a good one!
UPDATE (June 2007): I've moved all my Kari Byron commentary over to a different site; you're welcome to browse around here... but for anything new, check out the Kari Byron category on att.ention.net.