Showing posts with label evolution. Show all posts
Showing posts with label evolution. Show all posts

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Link-dump #17 (Fortean edition)

"They" Are Not "Them": A Hybrid View of the UFO Presence

Lost world of fanged frogs and giant rats discovered in Papua New Guinea

Chinese scientists 'filmed UFO for 40 minutes'

Has Jesus Christ been spotted on Mars? (I don't see it.)

A skull that rewrites the history of man

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Thursday, August 06, 2009

Elaine Morgan on the Aquatic Ape Hypothesis

Whether you agree with Morgan's case for semi-aquatic human ancestors or not, her willingness to take on the scientific priesthood with sensible (if resolutely unpopular) questions is refreshing indeed.

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Thursday, May 07, 2009

Return of the "hobbits"

Hobbits 'are a separate species'

The team, which discovered the tiny remains in Liang Bua cave on Flores, contends that the population belongs to the species Homo floresiensis - separate from our own grouping Homo sapiens.

They argue that the "Hobbits" are descended from a prehistoric species of human - perhaps Homo erectus - which reached island South-East Asia more than a million years ago.

Over many years, their bodies most likely evolved to be smaller in size, through a natural selection process called island dwarfing, claim the discoverers, and many other scientists.

(Via The Keyhoe Report.)

Friday, April 03, 2009

Terence McKenna and artificial intelligence

"This is a medium so permeating, so inclusive of what we are, that its agenda, in a sense, supervenes the agenda of organic evolution and organic biology."

(Once again, tip of the hat to Dedroidify.)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Mutants on demand

A Machine That Speeds Up Evolution

Rather than changing the genome letter by letter, as most genetic engineering is done, George Church and his colleagues have developed a new technology that can make 50 changes to a bacterial genome nearly simultaneously -- an advance that could be used to greatly speed the creation of bacteria that are better at producing drugs, nutrients, or biofuels.

"What once took months now takes days," says Stephen del Cardayré, vice president of research and development at LS9, a biofuels company based in South San Francisco of which Church is a founder.

(Via The Keyhoe Report.)

For when you need that doomsday virus now, damnit.

Sunday, March 08, 2009


It's all in how you look at things.

(Found at Centauri Dreams.)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Humanity (reloaded)

Juan Enriquez looks past the tumult of the present to an imminent evolutionary reboot:

Saturday, February 07, 2009

The posthuman condition

We are becoming a new species, we are becoming Homo Evolutis

Chairman and CEO of Biotechonomy, Enriquez says that humanity is on the verge of becoming a new and utterly unique species, which he dubs Homo Evolutis. What makes this species so unique is that it "takes direct and deliberate control over the evolution of the species." Calling it the "ultimate reboot," he points to the conflux of DNA manipulation and therapy, tissue generation, and robotics as making this great leap possible.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Life As We Know It Nearly Created in Lab

Now scientists have created something in the lab that is tantalizingly close to what might have happened. It's not life, they stress, but it certainly gives the science community a whole new data set to chew on.

The researchers, at the Scripps Research Institute, created molecules that self-replicate and even evolve and compete to win or lose. If that sounds exactly like life, read on to learn the controversial and thin distinction.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

'Hobbit' Fossils Represent A New Species, Concludes Anthropologist

University of Minnesota anthropology professor Kieran McNulty (along with colleague Karen Baab of Stony Brook University in New York) has made an important contribution toward solving one of the greatest paleoanthropological mysteries in recent history -- that fossilized skeletons resembling a mythical "hobbit" creature represent an entirely new species in humanity's evolutionary chain.

. . . and around and around we go.

Tangentially related:

La Planete des Singes: Human-Ape Hybrids and the Future of Chumanity

One of the leading activists to speak out against experiments that might involve inter-species breeding with humans and apes is Dr. Calum MacKellar, director of research at the Scottish Council on Human Bioethics, who this past April warned of a "controversial draft Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill" which did not specifically place restrictions on human sperm being inseminated into animals. MacKellar argues "if a female chimpanzee was inseminated with human sperm the two species would be closely enough related that a hybrid could be born."

Indeed, there are many instances throughout the last century where experiments were planned which may have proven conclusively whether creation of a "humanzee" were possible, though according to public records, none were seen through to completion. However, does this mean that there couldn't have been other instances where interbreeding took place at other times?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Return of the Neanderthals

Every serious scientist knows that we and other animals evolved from the same ancestors. The real question today is whether to put our DNA and theirs back together. Until now, that question has been raised in the form of human-animal hybrids made in labs for research. You can argue that these are somehow wrong because they're newfangled and artificial. But what can you say about Neanderthals? They were made by nature, not industry. In fact, we're the industrial villains who apparently wiped them out. They're as natural as we are.

Of course, just because "we" survived and the Neanderthals didn't doesn't necessarily entail that we're smarter. I actually suspect that Neanderthals were at least the equals of Cro-Magnons.

Maybe that's exactly what this planet needs right now: some good old-fashioned Neanderthal brains steering the ship.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Peter Watts offers some intriguing thoughts on Candidatus Desulforudis audaxviator, exobiology and immortality.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

George Dvorsky challenges the notion that humans have stopped evolving.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Viva cyberbiology!

(Thanks: BB.)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Disgruntled by National Geographic's distinctly unflattering rendering of "Wilma," a supposedly typical Neanderthal woman, conscientious Posthuman Blues reader Michael Garrett has produced a relatively blemish-free version:

She's still no Brooke Burke, but at least now she looks human -- which, being Neanderthal, she's not . . .

On the other hand, the "new" Wilma still looks a lot more appealing than this unsightly chimera, produced by John Fenderson:

Monday, September 22, 2008

DNA-Based Neanderthal Face Unveiled

Meet Wilma -- named for the redheaded Flintstones character -- the first model of a Neanderthal based in part on ancient DNA evidence.

Artists and scientists created Wilma (shown in a photo released yesterday) using analysis of DNA from 43,000-year-old bones that had been cannibalized. Announced in October 2007, the findings had suggested that at least some Neanderthals would have had red hair, pale skin, and possibly freckles.

(Via Aberrant News.)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Did evolution come before life?

A rudimentary form of natural selection likely existed in prebiotic molecules even before life arose on Earth, making the eventual arrival of life much more probable, according to models by mathematical biologists at Harvard University suggest.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Neanderthals were not 'stupid,' says new research

Neanderthals were not as stupid as they have been portrayed, according to new research Tuesday showing their stone tools were as good as those made by the early ancestors of modern humans, Homo sapiens.

The findings by a team of scientists at British and US universities challenge the assumption that the ancestors of people living today drove Neanderthals into extinction by producing better tools.

Another reason to read and savor Robert J. Sawyer's "Hominids."

(Thanks to Nick Redfern.)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Human ancestor fossil found in Europe

The researchers said the fossil found last year at Atapuerca in northern Spain, along with stone tools and animal bones, is up to 1.3 million years old. That would be 500,000 years older than remains from a 1997 find that prompted the naming of a new species: Homo antecessor, or Pioneer Man, possibly a common ancestor to Neanderthals and modern humans.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

How intelligent dinosaurs conquered the world

A brief citation doesn't do this one justice. Incidentally, the biped dinosaur discussed in the article has been oft-cited by various ufologists as a candidate "Gray" alien, even if the similarities are ultimately unconvincing. After all, dinosaurs didn't make the evolutionary cut. And even if they had, there's certainly no guarantee they'd evolve into dome-headed humanoids.

The "reptilian" crowd will likely propose that scientific speculation about intelligent dinosaurs -- even purely hypothetical dinosaurs -- bolsters their beliefs, which leaves one wondering why such a decidedly nonhuman species would take to meddling with human politics. Maybe a consultation with David Icke is in order . . .