14 articles from SUNDAY 7.8.2022

No, the human brain did not shrink 3,000 years ago

Did the 12th century B.C.E. -- a time when humans were forging great empires and developing new forms of written text -- coincide with an evolutionary reduction in brain size? Think again, says a team of researchers whose new paper refutes a hypothesis that's growing increasingly popular among the science community.

Siri or Skynet? How to separate AI fact from fiction

Determining the way artificial intelligence is used and governed will be one of the century’s key political battlegrounds. Here’s what everyone needs to know“Google fires engineer who contended its AI technology was sentient.” “Chess robot grabs and breaks finger of seven-year-old opponent.” “DeepMind’s protein-folding AI cracks biology’s biggest problem.” A new discovery (or...

Rare collection of bird fossils from 55m years ago donated to Scottish museum

Collection bequeathed to National Musuems Scotland includes species that are unknown to scienceA remarkable collection of fossilised birds that lived 55 million years ago has been bequeathed to the National Museums Scotland (NMS) in Edinburgh and includes dozens of species that are unknown to science.Dating from the beginning of the Eocene epoch, they represent the early stages in the evolution of...

New Pompeii finds highlight middle-class life in doomed city

A trunk with its lid left open. A wooden dishware closet, its shelves caved in. Three-legged accent tables topped by decorative bowls. These latest discoveries by archaeologists are enriching knowledge about middle-class lives in Pompeii before Mount Vesuvius' furious eruption buried the ancient Roman city in volcanic debris.