Re: An alternative to ST and AAT

Thomas Clarke (
2 Dec 1996 14:14:45 GMT

In article <> Phillip Bigelow <> writes:

>> ... the basic questions you think we should be
>> anwering here?
>My favorites are outlined below.
>Note that I broke the questions into two groups; mainly because, in
>order to answer the second group of questions, one must first answer
>(or at least get an approximate answer to) the first group of

>1) Collection of raw data (on-going)
> How many different species of each hominid can we find?
> How different from each other are these distinct species?
> Is there a temporal trend in each character-trait change?
> What is the polarity of this change?

You omit one thing. How do you go about finding new fossils?
Do you keep looking in the same old places, or do you hypothesize]
about the "lifestyles" of early hominids in order to find
new search locales?

>2) Analysis of the raw data (on-going, and much to be done)
... list of practical research questions omitted for brevity ..

>Also note one other thing in my list: not a *single* question regarding
>how "special" our hominid lineage is. That is because, philosophically,
>I don't believe that our lineage is that "special" in the first place.

One thing you may omit in the second list is the search for new
techniques enabling a wider range of questions to be answered.

Also, I think the existence of your list implies that hominid
fossils are "special". After all they are the fossils of your
most immediate "ancestors".

Tom Clarke