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Archaeology & Paleontology1329 articles archived since 1845

What the small-brained hobbit reveals about primate evolution

Is bigger always better? When it comes to brain size, that has long been the prevailing theory—at least among big-brained humans. But a new analysis shows that in the course of primate evolution, brains and brawn haven't always been on the rise...

January 26, 2010 — Katherine Harmon

Plants Put the Bend in Rivers

Studies in the journals Geology and Earth-Science Reviews reveal that ancient rivers were broad straight sheets of water. Colonization by plants changed the water flow. Adam Hinterthuer reports...

January 26, 2010

Homing In on Mammalian Echolocation

From 3-D scanning to genetic sequencing, researchers are using new tools to uncover information about this ability possessed by flying and swimming mammals alike

January 25, 2010 — Katherine Harmon
Cleopatra's Eyeliner: Peeper Health Keeper

Cleopatra's Eyeliner: Peeper Health Keeper

A study in the journal Analytical Chemistry finds that the black eyeliner worn by ancient Egyptians may have had properties that helped ward off eye-damaging bacterial infections. Cynthia Graber reports...

January 22, 2010
1 Million Years B.C.: Humans Rare

1 Million Years B.C.: Humans Rare

A study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences used genomic analysis of modern humans to reveal that the population of our ancestors a million years back was below 20,000...

January 21, 2010

Alan Alda's Human Spark

Alan Alda, star of stage, screen and science, talks with podcast host Steve Mirsky about his new PBS science series The Human Spark as well as his strong interest in science and long association with Scientific American...

January 7, 2010 — Steve Mirsky
Alan Alda Looks for "The Human Spark"

Alan Alda Looks for "The Human Spark"

The Human Spark, a three-part PBS series hosted by Alan Alda and debuting January 6th, looks at what makes humans the exceptionally unusual animals we are. Steve Mirsky reports

January 6, 2010

Bird-like dinosaur used venom to subdue prey

A fierce, feathered raptor might have been terrifying enough to small dinosaurs, lizards, birds and mammals living 128 million years ago, but add venom to its arsenal and the threat would be paralyzing—literally...

December 21, 2009 — Katherine Harmon
Grain Use Well before Modern Agriculture

Grain Use Well before Modern Agriculture

A study in the journal Science finds evidence that early modern humans were making use of grains, which required significant processing before eating, 100,000 years ago. Cynthia Graber reports...

December 18, 2009
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