Did you hear the one about the new – that is to say, old – species of human?
On the island of Luzon in the Philippines, scientists have discovered the fossil bones and teeth of a human species that lived more than 50,000 years ago. Named Homo luzonensis, researchers say the species might have stood no more than three feet tall.
Other species of human have been found in the past – fossils of Homo floresiensis, who lived about 60,000 years ago, were previously discovered on the Indonesian island of Flores. These are fascinating discoveries that reshape our understanding of humanity. But where did these mysterious ancestors come from?
Did you hear the one about the black hole from the galaxy Messier 87, 55 million light-years, give or take, from Earth? It posed for the first photograph ever of a black hole, described in The New York Times as “a smoke ring framing a one-way portal to eternity.”
A black hole is the remains of a collapsed star, so dense that even light cannot escape its gravity. Photographing the black hole – there’s also one in our own galaxy – counts as a stunning scientific achievement that required turning the Earth, itself, into a giant telescope and which affirmed Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity.
But a question: If it’s a portal, could there also be an exit, and if there’s an exit, what might emerge? We know what you’re thinking: tiny humans.
From the People are Weird file:
In Jackson, Miss., residents of the quirky Belhaven neighborhood are finding bowls of mashed potatoes on their cars, porches and mailboxes.
People in the neighborhood are also known for decorating road signs and putting Christmas trees in potholes, one of its denizens, Jordan Lewis, told the Associated Press. “So we don’t know if someone is just playing a prank or if someone just had a lot of leftovers,” he said. So far, no one has complained.
That wasn’t the case in Uhrichsville, Ohio, where striking school workers were not-so-thoughtfully offered homemade cookies by a couple who live near their noisy picket line. Turns out the cookies were laced with laxatives. None of the strikers ate the treats-for-trots, according to the AP, and the couple was charged with a crime.