Homo floresiensis

Deep history and the robot future


I reviewed four new science books for The New York Times. They span millions of years, beginning with the birth of humanity and ending with a serious look at AI. 

It's all in the wrist

More evidence that the hobbit, a newly discovered human-like species that grew to only a meter in adulthood, is actually a separate species. Critics suggested that the hobbit, found on the Indonesian island of Flores, was not a separate species but a deformed human. A recent analysis of the tiny people's wrist bones shows that they are more primitive than those of modern humans, in fact they are very like chimpanzee's. It seems likely that the hobbit split off from the hominid lineage quite some time before humans cropped up. New Scientist, NatGeo.