Archive | Evolution


New technique for thought-controlled data input almost as accurate as one-fingered typing

When we type or perform other precise tasks, our brains and muscles usually work together effortlessly. But when a neurological disease or spinal cord injury severs the connection between the brain and limbs, once-easy motions become difficult or impossible. In recent years researchers have sought to give people suffering from injury or disease some restored […]

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How evolution shaped our idea of the perfect butt

New research from The University of Texas at Austin sheds light on today’s standards of beauty, attributing modern men’s preferences for women with a curvy backside to prehistoric influences. Specifically, the woman’s ability to better support, provide for, and carry out multiple pregnancies. The study, published in Evolution and Human Behavior, investigated men’s mate preference […]

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New fossil interpretation challenges notion that birds are descended from dinosaurs

Re-examination of a sparrow-sized fossil from China has led researchers to challengethe commonly held belief that birds evolved from ground-dwelling dinosaurs that gained the ability to fly. Researchers Stephen Czerkas of the Dinosaur Museum in Utah, and Alan Feduccia of the University of North Carolina, say that the birdlike fossil is actually not a dinosaur, […]

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Human face evolved to be punched

A controversial new paper from the University of Utah contends that human faces have evolved over time to minimize injury from punches to the face during fights. The new theory, detailed in the journalBiological Reviews, presents an alternative view to the long-held hypothesis that the robustness of our faces resulted largely from the need to […]

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Walk this way: how an upright gait made humans musical

Why don’t chimpanzees, our closest primate cousins, have musical ability? Scientists at örebro University in Sweden hypothesize that our musical ability developed only after we had begun to walk upright. Writing in the journal Animal Cognition, researcher Matz Larsson suggests that our musicality stems from the need to deal with the disturbing sounds that are […]

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Mechanical gears seen in nature for the first time

Gear mechanisms, previously thought to only exist in man-made machines, have also evolved in nature, according to scientists who say they have made the first observation of mechanical gearing in a biological structure. The gears were identified in the hind-leg of juvenile Issus leafhoppers and they bear a remarkable resemblance to the cogs found on […]

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