Razib Khan One-stop-shopping for all of my content

June 15, 2010

Hobbits on NOVA

Filed under: Anthroplogy,Flores,Hobbits — Razib Khan @ 2:25 am

This looks interesting, Aliens from Earth:

An ancient legend on the Indonesian island of Flores tells of an elflike creature similar to the fictional hobbit of novels and film. But a controversial 2003 archeological find not only suggests that there could be some truth behind the legend but promises to rewrite a key chapter in the human evolutionary story. This program investigates the discovery, analysis, and startling implications of the hobbit of Flores.

Airs tonight in the USA.

February 24, 2010

The Hobbits Six Years On

Filed under: Flores,Hobbits,Human Evolution — Razib @ 11:36 pm

The Guardian has a long piece about the hobbits of Flores, and how they may have split from from the lineage which led to H. sapiens further back in time than had previously been assumed. In other words, where the hobbits had been theorized to have been a local adaptation of H. erectus, now the model is that they are the descendants of habilis or some other earlier hominin. In classic British style the article seems somewhat sensationalized to me, not to mention using terms that seem quaintly archaic, like “apemen.” I stopped paying attention to the hobbit stories after it seemed obvious that paleoanthropologists couldn’t agree on what they were. In other words, I’ve put it into a class similar to ALH 84001. What do readers think?

Note: Wasn’t too impressed with Mike Morwood’s book A New Human.

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