Neanderthals - Cave Men, in colloquial terms (as if Cro-Magnon emerged in a medieval castle; they all lived in caves if they could) - don't get a lot of respect for being smart. But they probably had a few things going for them, since they survived until around 20,000 B.C.
Maybe even medicine.
50,000-year-old Neanderthal teeth from the El Sidrón site in northern Spain show that they were not just meat-eaters, nor were they eating plants just as foragers. They may even have understood natural medicine.
Australopithecus sediba, a short, gangly hominid that lived in South Africa 2 million years ago, had a diet unlike virtually all other known human ancestors - trees and bushes.
A new study indicates that A. sediba ate harder foods than other early hominids like Paranthropus boisei, dubbed "Nutcracker Man" because of its massive jaws and teeth, which focused more on grasses and sedges.
Conservatives give more money to charity, studies show
. This makes some sense; liberals believe in sharing wealth already and advocate policies reflecting that while conservatives advocate smaller government and greater individual initiative.
But why do people in those political groups give to one cause over another? According to a new analysis in the International Journal of Research in Marketing: Special Issue on Consumer Identities
, the values of their political affiliation are more important than the charity itself.
Around election season, in whatever country you are in (assuming you have elections) you can tell True Believers in their earnest politics truly wish the other side could be labeled as having defective brains and genetics and therefore be cured - or at least sterilized.
Things would seem to be good in China. They are the only world economy not in a financial demilitarized zone, things are booming.
Yet more money is not making people there happier. They're actually less happy today than shortly after the Tiananmen Square protest in Beijing was crushed by the military, says economist Richard Easterlin, researcher in "happiness economics" and namesake of the Easterlin Paradox.
A 1.5 metric ton block of engraved limestone at the Abri Castanet in southern France is the earliest evidence of wall art - approximately 37,000 years old and evidence of the role art played in the daily lives of Early Aurignacian humans.
The research team has been excavating at Abri Castanet for the past 15 years. Abri Castanet and its sister site Abri Blanchard are among the oldest sites in Eurasia bearing artifacts of human symbolism. Hundreds of personal ornaments have been discovered, including pierced animal teeth, pierced shells, ivory and soapstone beads, engravings, and paintings on limestone slabs.
Tattoos and body piercings are so ubiquitous in western societies that they are more cliché than edgy, but social scientists in France say they may be more than fashion trends - they may be harbingers of doom. Individuals who get them are also more likely to engage in risky behaviors that include substance and alcohol use.
We created clocks and calendars to give people a common way to communicate about the future and the past and about when to have dinner. But time is, as they say, relative. A clock on top of a mountain moves differently than one at sea level - that's gravitational time dilation
. NIST researchers have even been able to show that tall people age differently than short ones.
And if you lived your life in a car traveling 20 miles per hour, you would age slower than people who just walk around. Time is not only relative in physics, it is relative in culture. We feel like time moves faster the older we get.
New York University cultural anthropologist and Associate Professor Allen Feldman is visiting the University of Sydney, notes the blog site of the School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry (SOPHI) - they named the site SOPHIstry, which may be a little too clever, since sophists in ancient times were the people real philosophers made fun of because they were trying to be too clever and prove up is down and other nonsense.
Mus musculus, the common mouse, can happily live wherever there are humans. When populations of humans migrate the mice often travel with them and apparently that has long been the case. New research used evolutionary techniques on modern day and ancestral mouse mitochondrial DNA to show that the timeline of mouse colonization even matches that of the Viking invasions.
During the Viking age (late 8th to mid 10th century) Vikings from Norway established colonies across Scotland, the Scottish islands, Ireland, and Isle of Man. They also explored the north Atlantic, settling in the Faroe Islands, Iceland, Newfoundland and Greenland. They intentionally brought horses, sheep, goats and chickens but also unknowingly carried pest species, including mice.