This discusses a lot of human origins / migration out of Africa, including information suggesting that humans almost went extinct about 70,000 years ago.
I was wondering if somebody could point me to some links / threads that might help deconstruct some of the technical methods behind this article? It's been a while since I was really "at" EvCForum, but I know people with the knowledge to help can certainly be found here!
It's been a while since I was really "at" EvCForum, but I know people with the knowledge to help can certainly be found here!
Unfortunately the ranks have dwindled (or been thinned depending on your view).
... help deconstruct some of the technical methods behind this article?
Personally, I have a lot of trouble using genetic information - as relics of the past preserved in the present - to talk about when certain changes/events/milestones occurred. To me they can talk about what happened, and the relative timing of different events, but not about absolute timescales.
I think the actual source for the article must have been the National Geographic's own article, here, rather than the original AJHG paper.
From reading the paper and some of the references I can't see the support for a lot of the claims in the CNN article. Particularly I can't see anywhere in the paper where they discuss the estimated population size of 2000, wherever they reference that paper they don't do it in that context and I don't see how it can be described as noting that the study shows it. The National Geographic article on the other hand does briefly mention 'Previous studies have shown that while human populations had been quite small prior to the Late Stone Age, perhaps numbering fewer than 2,000 around 70,000 years ago...', although it doesn't give a reference.
So in fact the whole extinction thing seems to come from a totally different paper, so its a bit of a shame seeing that plastered up as the headline for this paper.
Were there any particular technical methods you were interested in? I have studied human genetics somewhat and I'd be happy to see if I can find some resources to clarify things but the paper does quite a lot of different things so if there were specific things it might make things easier.