Thursday, December 23, 2010

Fossil genome reveals ancestral link

A distant cousin raises questions about human origins.

The ice-age world is starting to look cosmopolitan. While Neanderthals held sway in Europe and modern humans were beginning to populate the globe, another ancient human relative lived in Asia, according to a genome sequence recovered from a finger bone in a cave in southern Siberia. A comparative analysis of the genome with those of modern humans suggests that a trace of this poorly understood strand of hominin lineage survives today, but only in the genes of some Papuans and Pacific islanders.

More here:

And Discovery News:

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Consider Phlebas

Okay, I finally got my hands on a copy of Consider Phlebas by Iain M. Banks and enjoyed it immensely. The story is great, lots of really cool bits and despite the large size of the volume, it's all very fast paced. I love the ambiguity of it all. My one gripe: Most of the characters are total assholes. I found the snippy little robot to be the most likable character.