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The Curious Nature Of Human Evolution

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Human evolution is a historically complex scientific topic. Yet, while we may not all always agree, one thing we can settle on for sure is our shared ancestry and species tag Homo sapien. Although what scientists consider to be the first evolved Homo sapiens were believed to have originated in Africa between 200,000 and 150,000 years ago, the story of humans predates that by many years. In fact, our evolutionary predecessor, Homo erectus, had already been traveling in and out of Africa and exploring regions of what is now Europe and Asia for about a million years. That knowledge helps us understand why different cultures and people demonstrate such a diverse range of physical characteristics, yet extremely similar genetic material—and why 98.5 percent of our DNA makeup is shared with chimpanzees. And while we're not entirely sure how long ago the human ancestral line first emerged, researchers believe archeological evidence shows our lineage was in existence anywhere from five to eight million years ago.

So what was life like for early humans, and how do cultural changes like diet, geography, weather and disease play a role in how humans evolve today? Scientists date human culture back only about 50,000 years, marking it as a relatively new phenomena when compared to how long humans have existed. Learn more about the fascinating lineage of humans and how time has impacted the evolutionary process.

Subscribe to Discovery! | Curiosity studies the complex evolution of human life as we know it today. Learn more on Curiosity's "Mankind Rising"! | For more Curiosity, visit For full episodes of Curiosity, visit
Turns out evolution isn't always slow. Scientists in Nebraska have discovered a bird evolving right before our eyes. Read More: "Evolution via Roadkill" "Cliff swallows that build nests that dangle precariously from highway overpasses have a lower chance of becoming roadkill than in years past thanks to a shorter wingspan that lets them dodge oncoming traffic." "Evolution Before Your Eyes" "Darwin invoked the Latin phrase: "Natura non facit saltum," which means, "Nature doesn't make jumps." What he meant is that evolution happens very gradually with lots of transitional steps along the way." "Where has all the road kill gone?" "An estimated 80 million birds are killed by colliding with vehicles on U. S. roads each year [1], and millions more die annually in Europe and elsewhere." DNews is a show about the science of everyday life. We post two new videos every day of the week. Watch More Subscribe DNews Twitter Anthony Carboni Twitter: Laci Green Twitter Trace Dominguez Twitter DNews Facebook DNews Google+ DNews Website
Hank brings you the facts, as they are understood by scientists today, about the evolution of humans from our humble primate ancestors. On the way to becoming Homo sapiens, game-changing evolutionary breakthroughs led to the development of many hominin species, now all extinct. Hank will introduce us to these species & the breakthroughs responsible for their development, and help us understand the awesome ways in which they led to us. Like SciShow on Facebook! Follow SciShow on Twitter! References and image licenses for this episode can be found in the Google document here:
We've gone from living in trees to living on YouTube in just a few millennia. We explore the weird and wonderful facts behind human evolution Music = Blowgun by Igor Dvorkin and Ellie Kidd Click to Subscribe.. 10 Things You Didn't Know About Dinosaurs: The Darwin Conspiracy: The Fascinating Facts About The Ancient Greeks: Where else to find All Time 10s... Facebook: Twitter: Minds: Here are our 10 favorite videos from 2013.. Hope you have enjoyed them! :D -
Complete video at: Matt Ridley, journalist and author of The Rational Optimist, examines the driving force behind human evolution and technological innovation, especially over the past 100,000 years. Ridley argues the answer lies in the development of exchange, or trade. ---- Via trade and other cultural activities, "ideas have sex," and that drives human history in the direction of inconstant but accumulative improvement over time. The criers of havoc keep being proved wrong. A fundamental optimism about human affairs is deeply rational and can be reliably conjured with. Trained at Oxford as a zoologist and an editor at The Economist for eight years, Matt Ridley's newest book is The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves. His earlier works include Francis Crick; Nature via Nurture; Genome; and The Origins of Virtue. - The Long Now Foundation Matt Ridley's books have sold over 800,000 copies, been translated into 27 languages and been short-listed for six literary prizes. In 2004 he won the National Academies Book Award from the US National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine for Nature via Nurture. In 2006 he published Genome, a national bestseller. In 2007 he won the Davis Prize from the US History of Science Society for Francis Crick. His most recent book, The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves, was published in 2010. He is married to the neuroscientist Professor Anya Hurlbert. They have two children and live at Blagdon near Newcastle upon Tyne.
Professor Hill is interested in the whole range of human evolution, particularly in the environmental and ecological context in which it occurred. Since 1968 he has carried out fieldwork in eastern Africa, in Pakistan, and in the United Arab Emirates. For many years he has directed the Baringo Paleontological Research Project, a multidisciplinary research program operating in the Tugen Hills in Kenya. This ongoing work was the topic of aspecial double issue of the Journal of Human Evolution in 2002, and in 1999, he co-edited Fossil Vertebrates of Arabia.  We talk with him about the climate's influence on human evolution.
You're probably aware that nature has come up with some pretty fascinating animal adaptations over the millennia, and in general, the stranger the adaptation, the more important it is to that organism. Today on SciShow News, Hank has some new discoveries about weird adaptations to report on (including one in humans!), along with the reasons they evolved the ways they did. Like SciShow? Want to help support us, and also get things to put on your walls, cover your torso and hold your liquids? Check out our awesome products over at DFTBA Records: -- Looking for SciShow elsewhere on the internet? Facebook: Twitter: Tumblr: Sources
Celebrating decades of groundbreaking exploration in East Africa, renowned paleoanthropologists Donald Johanson and Richard Leakey shared the stage at the American Museum of Natural History on May 5 to discuss the overwhelming evidence for evolution in the hominid fossil record and why understanding our evolutionary history is so important. The discussion, before a sold-out crowd in the Museum's LeFrak Theater, was moderated by Dr. Sanjay Gupta, chief medical correspondent for CNN. The event was also live-streamed on to a digital audience of several hundred viewers around the country. Known for such landmark discoveries as "Lucy" (Johanson) and "Turkana Boy" (Leakey), the work of these two scientists has produced much of the fossil evidence that forms our understanding of human evolution. Looking back over careers spanning 40-plus years, Dr. Johanson and Dr. Leakey shared the stories behind their monumental finds and offered a look at what's ahead in human evolutionary research. This historic event was made possible through a joint partnership of the American Museum of Natural History, the Arizona State University Institute of Human Origins, and the Turkana Basin Institute, headquartered in the U.S. at Stony Brook University. This video is a recording of the live stream, which ran at Produced and directed by James Sims. Shot by Jill Bauerle and Manuel Benitez for