News A statue depicting a Neanderthal. Scientists have discovered that Neanderthal genes passed on to modern humans could affect our likelihood of developing auto-immune diseases.

The likelihood of people developing diseases including type two diabetes and Crohn's could be affected by genes inherited from Neanderthals

Stone-age humans began using lethal technology 71,000 years ago to fight Neanderthals

The date when stone-age humans first invented the lethal technology of spears and arrows has been set back many thousands of years with the discovery of small stone blades dating to 71,000 years ago.

Debate about the Neanderthals' fate has raged for decades

Neanderthals vs. Humans: Who would win in a fight?

We've had Alien vs. Predator, Monsters vs. Aliens and Dracula vs. Frankenstein, but what would happen if modern man and his prehistoric ancestor were to square off?

New Culture Secretary Maria Miller faces wrath of Conservative right flank with resounding endorsement of gay marriage agenda

The new Culture Secretary today risked incurring the wrath of the Conservative Party’s right flank with a resounding endorsement of the Government’s gay marriage agenda.

Debate about the Neanderthals' fate has raged for decades

Scientists say you're not the Neanderthal they used to think

The shared DNA of Neanderthals and humans is probably due to a common ancestor

Leading article: What happened to our profusion of cousins?

Yet more evidence of the profusion of human ancestry has dealt another blow to the notion of a single "missing link" between modern Homo sapiens and our ape-like forebears.

Coast By Nick Crane

Drawing on Nick Crane's experience as a presenter of the BBC series Coast, this is an intellectual beachcomb around Britain's coastline; part geography, part geology, part natural history, part social history.

Neanderthal man's 'life of domesticity'

Neanderthal man may have preferred domestic chores to a rugged hunter-gatherer lifestyle, researchers have said.

Bill Gates’ foundation is a major player in global development

Anger after Bill Gates gives £6m to British lab to develop GM crops

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has given British scientists a multi-million pound grant to develop GM crops in what could be the most significant PR endorsement for the controversial technology.

A detail from the 'Panel of Hands', El Castillo Cave in northern Spain showing red disks and hand stencils made by blowing or spitting paint onto the wall. A date from a calcium carbonate layer covering one of the red disks has revealed that the painting is more than 41,000 years old, making it the oldest known definitively-dated cave art in Europe. The image of the bison was painted by other Prehistoric people long after the hand images had been created.

Brutish? You have to hand it to the Neanderthals after all

Cave paintings dated as 15 milliennia older than originally thought, making them Europe's earliest known paintings

The Stone Age Europeans believed to have migrated to North America along the edge of the then frozen northern Atlantic would have had to adopt a lifestyle similar to that of traditional Eskimos depicted here in this 19thcentury print

New evidence suggests Stone Age hunters from Europe discovered America

New archaeological evidence suggests that America was first discovered by Stone Age people from Europe – 10,000 years before the Siberian-originating ancestors of the American Indians set foot in the New World.

A fragment of the jawbone, with three teeth, discovered in Devon

Jawbone shows we lived with Neanderthals

The long scientific dispute over when anatomically modern humans first arrived in Europe on their long trek out of Africa has come close to resolution – with the help of a fragment of jawbone belonging to an elderly person who lived near present-day Torquay.

Deciphering Ancient Minds: The Mystery of San Bushman Rock Art, By David Lewis-Williams & Sam Challis

When I came back to this book after finishing it, I was looking forward to further reflections, but they were dispelled by a shimmering ring that appeared floating above the pages. It seemed to be made of prisms arranged in a glassy parquet; as usual it was incomplete, and as always it was mercurial. It's a familiar kind of apparition; not just in my field of vision but in those of people suffering from migraine, people under the influence of hallucinogens and, according to David Lewis-Williams, the San people who painted on rocks in southern Africa over thousands of years until the end of the 19th century.

Andy Martin: Tweeting that started with the cavemen

Language is not just about tracking, it is about leaving tracks and traces

<i>IoS</i> letters, emails &amp; online postings (17 April 2011)

There is another AV: approval voting ("Here we go again, voting tactically...", 3 April). It is far simpler than the system which in most countries is called instant run-off voting but which here has been dubbed the alternative vote. True, this AV solves the dilemma that if you vote for the candidate you really want, you weaken another who has a chance of winning, and vice versa. But few know that their vote will not ultimately count at all if none of their choices include the winner or runner-up (so that it is not really true that the winner will always have been voted for by more than 50 per cent). Furthermore, few understand what difference it will make if they rank candidate A as 1 and B as 2 or the other way around. The answer is: none. Whether you give first ranking to the one you really want or the one who has a greater following, your vote will end up with the latter. So why not just put ticks against the names of all those you could approve? That is approval voting. There is no redistributing and recounting, and it clearly reports the real distribution of the voters' wishes.

Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Werner Herzog, 93 Mins (U)

The cave paintings at Chauvet may be 32,000 years old, but Herzog, with his appetite for a challenge, brings them to dazzling life with judicious use of 3D
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