Human Origins Slide Show
What's Hot in Human Origins?
What Does It Mean To Be Human?
New digs and geological dating in Liang Bua Cave, Indonesia, show that Homo floresiensis, nicknamed the “hobbit” for its small size, became extinct around 50,000 years ago – tens of thousands of years earlier than originally thought.
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The Hall of Human Origins offers a welcoming place to explore one of the most exciting areas of science, the study of human evolution. Despite strong public interest in the science, however, many people find this topic troubling when viewed from a religious perspective. Representatives of diverse religious communities encourage a larger, more respectful understanding of both the scientific evidence and religious belief.
All modern humans are 99.9% similar to one another in the part of the human genome that codes for proteins. In equivalent areas of the genome, we are 98.8% genetically similar to chimpanzees, 75% genetically similar to chickens, and even 60% genetically similar to banana trees! Humans share large portions of our genome with other organisms due to similar basic functions across the animal kingdom.