[vemba-video id=”van/sc/2019/05/22/bang_09ba0fb2-182c-4fd6-bcd1-1aa93074d780″](CLICK HERE, if you are unable to view this photo gallery on your mobile device.) SANTA CLARA — Watching Jimmy Garoppolo throw passes on a reconstructed knee actually wasn’t the most jarring sight Tuesday on the 49ers practice field.Instead, top draft pick Nick Bosa sustained a hamstring injury in linemen drills on Day 2 of organized team activities. He’s got plenty of company on the injury list.Coach Kyle …
Meet Australopithecus sediba – or is it Homo something? Scientists are arguing over how to classify new fossils found in a cave at Malapa, South Africa. Announced today in Science,1 the fossils, alleged to be just under 2 million years old, are producing a strange mixture of hopeful headlines and cautionary counsels from experts. As could be expected, headlines in the popular press tease their readers with tantalizing titillations: “Fossil Skeletons May Be Human Ancestor” wrote Charles Q. Choi for Live Science. Ker Than wrote “‘Key’ Human Ancestor Found: Fossils Link Apes, First Humans?” for National Geographic. And Jeff Hecht wrote “Almost human: closest australopithicine [sic] primate found” for New Scientist. And anything that might please Darwin has to include the shedding-light motif: Science Daily’s long headline proclaimed, “New Hominid Shares Traits With Homo Species: Fossil Find Sheds Light on the Transition to Homo Genus from Earlier Hominids.” True to tradition, PhysOrg dutifully paraded the iconic image of the march of progress from ape to man, complete with racist skin colors and sexist depictions of naked males only, their right legs or arms artfully concealing their private parts. It’s not quite clear why most of these charts leave the highest man beardless, unless the chart is Lamarckian, in which case a spare tire should also be evident. Yet a closer look at the articles reveals a great deal of doubt about many aspects of the story.Taxonomy: Experts disagreed strongly on whether these specimens should be classified within Australopithecus or Homo. If it had been classified within Homo, it would have represented a dead-end lineage of no consequence to human evolution. There appears to have been a strong controversy between the discoverers and other experts about which taxon to use.Traits: The skeletons appear to have a mosaic of traits: long limbs and small brain capacity, but indications of upright posture and human-like teeth.Provenance: Experts disagreed whether the bones were buried together, or fell through to other levels after burial.Dating: The dating depends on the provenance, yet was measured with U-Pb dating of materials below the bones. Assigning a date is critical to how evolutionists perceive the specimen’s relationship to human ancestry.Hope: No one is claiming these fossils clarify a human evolution story. Hopes that it might are put in future tense: “This new Australopithecus sediba species might eventually clear up that debate, and help to reveal our direct human ancestors.”Credibility: Lee Berger, the lead author of the paper, has been involved in sharp controversies with other paleoanthropologists about which hominids represent human ancestors. Michael Balter wrote for Science,2 “Some of Berger’s other past claims have sparked strong criticism, including a highly publicized 2008 report of small-bodied humans on Palau, which Berger thought might shed light on the tiny hobbits of Indonesia. But other researchers say the Palau bones belong to a normal-sized modern human population.” Berger gave this new fossil a suggestive name: sediba is local lingo for “wellspring” – as if his discovery can garner significance merely by naming it that way.Candidacy: Michael Balter’s headline in Science accompanying the paper is more guarded than the popular press: “Candidate Human Ancestor From South Africa Sparks Praise and Debate.”Dispute: Balter quoted Tim White’s opinion: “Given its late age and Australopithecus-grade anatomy, it contributes little to the understanding of the origin of genus Homo.”Burial: The authors’ hypothesis about how the bones were buried contains many ad-hoc elements (see below).Sequence: Balter considered the opinion of Chris Stringer of the London Natural History Museum: in summary, “At no earlier than 2 million years old, A. sediba is younger than Homo-looking fossils elsewhere in Africa, such as an upper jaw from Ethiopia and a lower jaw from Malawi, both dated to about 2.3 million years ago.”Deflation: Even Lee Berger, the discoverer, made this admission: “Berger and his co-workers agree that the Malapa fossils themselves cannot be Homo ancestors but suggest that A. sediba could have arisen somewhat earlier, with the Malapa hominins being late-surviving members of the species.”Meaning: All Balter could say in conclusion is confusion: “However they are classified, the Malapa finds ’are important specimens in the conversation’ about the origins of our genus, says [Susan] Ant�n [New York U], and ‘will have to be considered in the solution.’” The statement implies that the conversations do not include solutions – only questions.A second paper accompanying the discovery announcement considered the geological context of the fossils.3 It defends a hypothesis that the skeletons were buried in a debris flow into the cave before scavengers could harm them. Others, however, are not so sure: “Geochemist Henry Schwarcz of McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, notes that the team suggests that the hominin bodies might have been moved by river flows after they fell into the cave from holes in the earth above,” explained Michael Balter. “If so, the fossils may not be tightly associated with the dated deposits below and above them.” Dirks et al dispute that, calling attention to the fact that “the bones were partly articulated with each other, implying that they were buried soon after death.” A lot of interpretation depends, however, on the dating of the sediments above and below the bones. The paper’s hypothesis includes many ad-hoc elements: carnivores were attracted to vertical shafts where prey animals had fallen to their deaths: “These factors could have operated to accumulate a diverse assemblage of carcasses in the chamber below, away from carnivore activity,” the authors speculated. “The sediments imply that subsequent high-volume water inflow, perhaps the result of a large storm, caused a debris flow that carried the still partially articulated bodies deeper into the cave, to deposit them along a subterranean stream.” It would seem this complex sequence of happenstance occurrences would obfuscate any conclusions about dating.Update 04/09/2010: True to tradition, the counter-claims quickly ensued. “Please, please, not again,” moaned Carl Zimmer in Slate, recalling the hype about Ida last year (05/19/2009, 03/03/2010). Zimmer accepts evolution but denies (with Berger) that the term “missing link” have any validity. As for this fossil, “None of the experts I spoke to this week were ready to accept Berger’s hypothesis about A. sediba’s special place in the hominin tree,” he said. “It might actually belong to a different branch of hominin evolution. It may have evolved its Homo-like traits independently of our own ancestors.” It would seem its ability to illuminate much of anything about human history is dubious. Zimmer quoted Daniel Lieberman of Harvard admitting, “The origins of the genus Homo remain as murky as ever.” Meanwhile, Nature News weighed in on the significance (or lack of it) of this fossil. “Claim over ‘human ancestor’ sparks furore,” headlined Michael Cherry: “the researchers’ suggestion that the fossils represent a transitional species in human evolution, sitting between Australopithecus and Homo species, has been criticized by other researchers as overstated.” Quotes from Tim White (UC Berkeley) were especially harsh. He said the Berger team’s claim that these skeletons had anything to do with the rise of Homo is “fossil-free speculation” adding with Ida overtones, “the obsession with Homo in their title and text is difficult to understand outside of a media context.” Another said the bones could represent nothing more than variation within other known species. Another noted that the earliest Homo skeleton predates this find by half a million years. Berger countered that the earlier fossils are less complete. A supporter of Berger’s classification may have taken more than he gave when he said, “The Malapa specimens will rekindle the debate about the validity of the taxon Homo habilis, and will make us look more carefully at the variability of Australopithecus africanus and her sister species.” (For info on Homo habilis, see 08/09/2007, 05/27/2009, and 09/21/2009). Cherry ended his article with doubt: “the latest finds raise important questions about the ancestry of humans.” That statement raises the possibility that Berger’s fossil is a step backwards in understanding. For difficulties with the Homo classification, see the 05/27/2009 entry.1. Berger et al, “Australopithecus sediba: A New Species of Homo-Like Australopith from South Africa,” Science, 9 April 2010: Vol. 328. no. 5975, pp. 195-204, DOI: 10.1126/science.1184944.2. Michael Balter, “Candidate Human Ancestor From South Africa Sparks Praise and Debate,” Science, 9 April 2010: Vol. 328. no. 5975, pp. 154-155, DOI: 10.1126/science.328.5975.154.3. Dirks et al, “Geological Setting and Age of Australopithecus sediba from Southern Africa,” Science, 9 April 2010: Vol. 328. no. 5975, pp. 205-208, DOI: 10.1126/science.1184950.If the storytellers cannot agree on their own story, why should the audience judge the performance a history class rather than a comedy? The bones are real; the interpretations are highly questionable and fallible. Most likely this is another extinct ape out of many extinct apes that lived not so long ago. Wishful-thinking Darwinian paleoanthropologists are eager to divine human attributes in whatever bones they find. They fight and squabble over where the bones fit into their mental picture of how philosophers emerged from screeching monkeys in the trees. Pay them no mind; we’ve seen this comedy show so many times before, and we know the eventual outcome. Someone else will appear on stage with a new bone and announce, “Everything you know is wrong.” (02/23/2001, 02/19/2004).(Visited 35 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
The Supreme Court verdict on the Babri Masjid-Ramjanmabhoomi land dispute has left the people of Ayodhya divided on predictable lines. The Hindu populace celebrated the order but it triggered a sense of dejection among the Muslim community of Faizabad-Ayodhya.The contrasting moods could be gauged as one walked through the different localities of the heavily guarded district on Saturday.The Hindu population of the town and district welcomed the judgment as vindication of their religious beliefs and expressed the hope that the construction of a Ram temple would augur a new wave of development. The minority community, while honouring the court decision, felt it had failed to deliver justice to them.A home for Ram LallaIn the vicinity of the disputed site, several members of the Hindu community rejoiced in the streets, chanting “Jai Shri Ram!” and distributed sweets. Ramji Nigam, who has a shoe shop near the Hanuman Garhi temple, burst into cheers as soon as the verdict flashed on his TV screen. “All of Ayodhya’s troubles will now disappear,” he said. “Justice has happened.”Prakash Gaud,who sells puja items near the makeshift Ram temple, said, a Ram Mandir would provide a big boost to business. “More people will now start coming to Ayodhya. I feel personally happy too. Now Ram Lalla will move from a tent to his rightful palace,” he said.As most of the areas in the vicinity of the disputed site were barricaded and vehicle entry barred, the civilian presence was noticeably thin. However, darshan (paying obeisance) went on as usual at the main temples with devotees trickling in through the day.Several Hindus, while expressing satisfaction at the verdict, also felt it was a sensible to award an alternate land to the Muslim side.Across town, the Purani Sabzi Mandi, a densely-populated locality in the heart of Faizabad wore a deserted look with Muslims preferring to keep their shops and stores shut as a precaution. The feast to be organised on the occasion of Barawafat (the birthday of Prophet Mohammad) on Sunday was cancelled as a gesture of mourning.Mohammad Ahmed, a clothes trader, was one of the few persons walking around the empty and silent lanes. While expressing disappointment at the verdict, he, however, said it came with the bargain of peace. “If the decision was other way round, there would have been a lot of bloodshed,” he reasoned.Mohammad Shariq, who owns a lock shop in Raqabganj, said the verdict was based on “faith” rather than a title suit but accepted it as a reality of being a member of a ‘minority’.“The moment I heard on the television that five acres would be given to Muslims for a mosque, I shut the news. Tears rolled down my face,” Mr. Shariq said. Like many Muslims The Hindu spoke to, Mr. Shariq also said the court case about the land where the Babri Masjid stood till December 6, 1992, was a matter of “justice” and not religion for them. They argued that if the apex court had divided the disputed land equally between the two main sides, that would have been more acceptable to them.
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Man City boss Guardiola praises Dani Olmo over ‘courageous’ Dinamo Zagreb moveby Paul Vegas24 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester City boss Pep Guardiola has praised Dani Olmo over his move to Dinamo Zagreb.Guardiola admits he’s impressed by the former Barcelona junior.He said: “He was in the youth of Barcelona and normally who plays there is a good player. “He had the courage to move to Croatia and it was a good choice. “He was one of the best players of the European Under-21s with an incredible performance.”
They’re throwing quite a celebration party at the Breslin Center tonight. Michigan State’s men’s basketball team, which clinched a berth into the Final Four earlier this afternoon with a victory against Louisville in the Elite Eight in Syracuse, is back in East Lansing. Tom Izzo’s squad was welcomed home by thousands of roaring fans at their arena. Michigan State is set to face Duke in the Final Four in Indianapolis on Saturday.
OSU Executive Assosicate Athletic Director Martin Jarmond in an interview with The Lantern Sept. 21 at the Fawcett Center. Credit: Hayden Grove / Lantern TV Sports directorOn the outskirts of campus, high above Ohio State’s sprawling array of athletics facilities, sits the office where the gridiron contests held at Ohio Stadium are dreamed up years in advance of when fans will take to the stands.This office — this epicenter of Buckeye football imagination — houses Martin Jarmond, the executive associate athletic director at OSU, and a series of whiteboards, where current and future OSU football schedules are written out in black marker. Jarmond’s position doesn’t necessarily require him to be responsible for each of those schedules, though. Instead, he specifically asked to create them when he was hired in 2009 at the athletics administration department. “Quite honestly, I think I probably asked (vice president and athletic director Gene Smith) if I could do that. I think I did,” Jarmond said, a half-smile on his face. “(Football scheduling) was something that was really important to me, that I said I really wanted to do and tackle and help him accomplish the vision he wants to accomplish.”So far, Smith said he has been more than pleased with his decision to allow Jarmond to handle the scheduling, along with his other responsibilities as an athletic administrator. “Martin has developed into an outstanding athletic administrator. He continues to differentiate himself as a leader,” Smith said in an email. “His background as a collegiate athlete, and various roles in athletic administration strengthens his opportunity to reach his goal of becoming an athletic director.”Jarmond played basketball while attending the University of North Carolina-Wilmington. While his boss might understand the daily grind that Jarmond goes through to put the Buckeyes’ football schedule together, not all OSU or college football fans do.Jarmond said there are many variables and challenges that are presented in creating a football schedule, and he calls planning for the Buckeyes “the process.” It begins with Smith and the desires he spells out for Jarmond. “His (scheduling strategy) that he’s outlined is at least trying to have a top 10-team opponent every year, then a top 25, top 30-type opponent and then maybe a top 50 or what you can attract,” Jarmond said. “It’s mostly about what you can attract.”With his boss sketching the scheduling outline, specifically tailored to feature big-time, out-of-conference opponents, it’s Jarmond’s responsibility to color within the proverbial lines. “The way we do it is from a competitive standpoint,” Jarmond said. “I look at data from the last five years. I try to look at teams, schools, how they’ve done, their coaching, their philosophy, their offense, their defense and that kind of thing.”That research manifests itself in the form of a list of schools that both Jarmond and Smith believe will aptly play the role of an OSU opponent. That list can include a wide array of schools, each of which is put through additional rigors that include the potential national relevance of a future matchup, the effect that a game against that school will have on recruiting and even the institution’s proximity to an OSU fan base. Those factors in turn lead to churning out another list. OSU Executive Assosicate Athletic Director Martin Jarmond highlights future OSU football schedules Sept. 21 at the Fawcett Center.Credit: Hayden Grove / Lantern TV Sports directorThis list is the one where the next step of the scheduling process begins: the phone calls. It was amidst these phone calls and negotiations that Jarmond said he faced a surprising challenge in his early days as an OSU administrator. Getting opponents to Columbus was a challenge — one he did not expect. “I think — naively — I was probably thinking because we’re Ohio State, it would just be very easy and everybody would want to play us and it would be easy to work things through,” Jarmond said. “It’s not like, ‘Wow, we’d love to come to Columbus in front of 107,000.’ I thought it was going to be that way — it’s not really that way.”And some opponents might not want to spend money traveling to a city where they could potentially lose. The lack of desire to travel to Columbus makes things harder for Jarmond in scheduling opponents, along with the other factors that make it a tough job. Jarmond already has to account for things like an expanded Big Ten schedule (to nine from eight games per season in 2016) and the College Football Playoff that will take into account strength of schedule more so than the old BCS system did. These things are an added burden for Jarmond and are only lengthening planning lead time, forcing schedules until 2020 to be planned now.“It’s an inventory issue, if you’re trying to schedule stronger, you need to go ahead and do what you can do now before (other schools say), ‘Hey, we can’t play you because we don’t have anything available,’” Jarmond said. “Everything is just kind of accelerated and you have to kind of project out and where teams are going to be.” In the past, Jarmond admitted that this advanced planning has harmed OSU, with teams like California projecting well at the initial time of scheduling before taking a dive in relevancy prior to the two schools playing, but he tries to avoid those issues recurring in the future.“It’s an inexact science, but what I try to do is use the data as much as I can on where you’ve been to kind of give us an idea of where you may be,” Jarmond said. “It’s like the stock market. You look at past performance and you try to project on that.”Lately, Jarmond — with some added motivation from Smith and the fans who have bashed OSU’s football non-conference scheduling over the years — has been pressing to bolster OSU’s future schedules. Ari Wasserman of Cleveland.com said that’s something OSU has been forced to do, thanks to a weakened Big Ten conference.“(The Buckeyes) don’t get any quality wins in the Big Ten because the Big Ten doesn’t really have any premier opponents,” Wasserman said. “Going undefeated in the Big Ten may be enough to get to the playoff, but maybe when they play a team like Oklahoma and slip up, bolstering their schedule is a really smart thing to do. You’re going to have quality wins in the future with the games they’ve scheduled.”Oklahoma is just one of the schools Jarmond has added to the schedule, but there are plenty of other out-of-conference games gracing that whiteboard on his wall.Notre Dame, Boston College, Oregon State, Oregon, Texas and Texas Christian are all future opponents and it’s these additions that provide Jarmond with confidence in the work he’s done. “I would put our scheduling (from) 2016 and out compared to anybody,” Jarmond said, glancing at the board. “You tell me another school right now that has BC, Texas and Notre Dame in the same year.”When the Buckeyes take on the Bearcats on Saturday, fans might not pay much attention to the effort and work that went into scheduling an in-state rivalry game. They’ll be watching to see if the Buckeyes can hold back Cincinnati’s redshirt-sophomore quarterback Gunner Kiel, or whether OSU redshirt-freshman quarterback J.T. Barrett can win yet another Big Ten Freshman of the Week award.While Jarmond will certainly be watching the same action, he’ll have a different view of the game — one that few others in Ohio Stadium will have. He’ll be watching planning come to life upon the turf.