brain the size of a grapefruit

I just want to say that the “hominid”: remains discovered in Indonesia, of a wholly unknown species, extinct no more than 12,000 years ago, tool-making and, if it were to get to the island, at least descended from a boat-building primates, is one of the most wonderful scientific stories of my lifetime. The creature was only a metre tall, and a brain the size of a chimpanzee’s — 380cc.

Oh, and one more thing. _Nature,_ where the real story appears, wants $30.00 for a peek at a single article. Even a creature with a brain the size of a grapefruit could be smarter and more moral than that.

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4 Responses to brain the size of a grapefruit

  1. tom says:

    Journal publishing is a scam, isn’t it? I’ll send you the PDF if you’d like…

  2. rupert says:

    The most intriguing part of the story was the report of local folk tales describing a race of very tiny people with a notable correspondence to the original owners of the bones. But the whole thing is very exciting — just when the study of early hominids seemed to be settling down to long-slog science, we have a whole other recent species.

    The creationists have already been at the story, by the way. “In short, the discovery is exciting and interesting. Evolutionists are surprised and astonished by it. However, they will doubtless find ways to fit it into their ever-flexible evolutionary framework, even using it to reinforce evolutionary notions. The Flores discovery fits very nicely into a biblical view of history. But it seems somewhat awkward, to put it mildly, for those who attempt to marry the millions of years and the Bible.” [etc, etc, etc]

    A shocking business having an evolutionary framework that can cope with new discoveries, isn’t it…


  3. qB says:

    It was free when I went. Maybe you have been read and obeyed!

  4. acb says:

    Well, some of it was free, but the two papers from the body of the magazine were not. I didn’t really want other people’s analysis. I wanted to decide for myself what was significant — the blotting paper texture of the homind bones; the fact that some of the pygmy elephant bones seemed charred.

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