Thursday April 25, 2019

Famous Pre Human ‘Lucy’ likely to have died after falling from a tree: Study

Researchers reached their conclusions after extensive X-ray scanning of the skeleton over 10 days when they were able to borrow the skeleton

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A reconstruction of "Lucy", a female Australopithecus Afarensis. Source: wikipedia

August 30, 2016: According to Researchers from University of Texas, Lucy, our most famous ancestor, may have died due to a fall from a tree, after they analysed her fossilized bones.

The Australopithecus afarensis, which walked upright, lived in Africa between three- and four million years ago. Her partial skeleton was unearthed in 1974.

Some experts disagree with the conclusion, arguing instead that her bones were broken after the young adult hominid died.

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Lead author John Kappelman told The Washington Post there were some cracks that appeared to have happened post-mortem, but there were also apparent compression fractures likely cause by some kind of impact.

Researchers reached their conclusions after extensive X-ray scanning of the skeleton over 10 days when they were able to borrow the skeleton, which is usually kept in Ethiopia.

“We scanned nonstop, 24/7, for 10 days,” Kappelman, a the University of Texas at Austin anthropology and geological sciences professor, told the Post. “We were exhausted. I was happy to see her come, but I was happy to see her go.”

“Orthopedic surgeons see these breaks day in and day out all over the planet,” Kappelman said. He’s had several specialists take a look at Lucy’s big break.

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“To the person, it’s not like, ‘Oh, you know, there’s a chance.’ They say, ‘This is what it is; we see it in our practice all the time.’ We have been able to demonstrate that these are matches to what is widely seen in the literature in patients recovering from a fall,” he said.

But some experts are dubious.

“I’ve worked in eastern Africa at these sites for many years, and there’s hardly a fossil out there that doesn’t have damage like Lucy has,” said William Kimbel, director of the Institute of Human Origins at Arizona State University, during an interview with The Washington Post.

“I just don’t buy it,” said Kimbel, who was not involved in the research.

The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Texas at Austin and appeared in Monday’s issue of the journal Nature. (VOA)

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  • Manthra koliyer

    This is great news, we need to learn more about our ancestors.

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Most of 2030’s Jobs Haven’t Been Invented Yet

In theory, this kind of online job matching could lead to less bias and discrimination in hiring practices. However, there are potential pitfalls.

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In theory, this kind of online job matching could lead to less bias and discrimination in hiring practices. However, there are potential pitfalls.

More than two-thirds of jobs that today’s college students will have in 11 years haven’t been invented yet.

“Those who plan to work for the next 50 years, they have to have a mindset of like, ‘I’m going to be working and learning and working and learning, and working and learning,’ in order to make a career,” says Rachel Maguire, a research director with the Institute for the Future, which forecasts that 85 percent of the jobs that today’s young people will hold in 2030 don’t exist right now.

The Institute for the Future, a nonprofit that identities emerging trends and their impacts on global society, envisions that by 2030, we’ll be living in a world where artificial assistants help us with almost every task, not unlike the way email tries to finish spelling a word for users today.

Maguire says it will be like having an assistant working alongside you, taking on tasks at which the human brain does not excel.

“For the human, for the people who are digitally literate who are able to take advantage, they’ll be well-positioned to elevate their position, elevate the kind of work they can do, because they’ve got essentially an orchestra of digital technologies that they’re conducting,” she says. “They’re just playing the role of a conductor, but the work’s being done, at least in partnership, with these machines.”

New technology in the next decade is expected to lead to new human-machine partnerships that will make the most of each partner's respective strengths.
New technology in the next decade is expected to lead to new human-machine partnerships that will make the most of each partner’s respective strengths. VOA

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says today’s students will have eight to 10 jobs by the time they are 38.

And they won’t necessarily have to take time away from any one of those jobs for workforce training or to gain additional certifications related to their fields. Instead, they’ll partner with machines for on-the-job learning, wearing an augmented reality headset that will give them the information they need in real-time to get the work done.

“It eliminates the need for people to step away from income generating opportunities to recertify in order to learn a new skill so they can level up and earn more money,” Maguire says. “It gives the opportunity for people to be able to learn those kinds of new skills and demonstrate proficiency in-the-moment at the job.”

Students use virtual reality for an immersive educational experience. VR blocks out the physical world and transports the user to a simulated world. (Courtesy Dell.com)
Students use virtual reality for an immersive educational experience. VR blocks out the physical world and transports the user to a simulated world. (Courtesy Dell.com) VOA

And forget about traditional human resources departments or the daunting task of looking for a job on your own. In the future, the job might come to you.

Potential employers will draw from different data sources, including online business profiles and social media streams, to get a sense of a person and their skill set.

Maquire says there’s already a lot of activity around turning employment into a matchmaking endeavor, using artificial intelligence and deep learning to help the right person and the right job find each other.

In theory, this kind of online job matching could lead to less bias and discrimination in hiring practices. However, there are potential pitfalls.

“We have to be cognizant that the people who are building these tools aren’t informing these tools with their own biases, whether they’re intentional or not,” Maguire says. “These systems will only be as good as the data that feeds them.”

Also Read: Migrant Caravan Still Stuck in Mexico Shelter, Frustration Grows By Every Passing Day

Which leads Maguire to another point. While she doesn’t want to sound melodramatic or evangelical about emerging technologies, she believes it is critical for the public to get engaged now, rather than sitting back and letting technology happen to them.

“What do we want from these new technological capabilities, and how do we make sure we put in place the social policies and the social systems that will result in what it is we all want?” she says. “I have a deep concern that we’re just kind of sitting back and letting technology tell us what jobs we’ll have and what jobs we won’t have, rather than us figuring out how to apply these technologies to improve the human condition.” (VOA)