Friday Four

Friday, October 18, 2013

1. "Headhunter" Nick Corcodilos demonstrates once again why I am a fan of his work when replies to a reader who asks how to optimize his first day at a new job:

It's a good idea to stop by your boss's office at the end of your first day to say thanks for the job and to "check in." But you should also check in with your boss regularly, to ensure you're meeting his or her expectations and that you understand your objectives.
As always, Corcodilos reminds us to keep our eyes on the prize, and his advice flows quite naturally from it. The blog posting also contains a link to a longer article on starting a job on the right foot. It, too, goes beyond what one might expect, with advice that is really good to follow throughout a career.

2. This week, I really enjoyed a visit from my mother, who came to help me with the kids while my wife was away for a conference. Pictured at the right is one of the batch of Halloween cookies she and my daughter made on the morning of the last day, while it was raining outside.

3. This article contains more than you'll ever need to know about North American phone numbers with the 555 prefix. You may be surprised to learn that they are not all fictional.

4. Will scientists have to prune our evolutionary tree, based on an analysis of several skulls found in Georgia?
The odd dimensions of the fossil prompted the team to look at normal skull variation, both in modern humans and chimps, to see how they compared. They found that while the Dmanisi skulls looked different to one another, the variations were no greater than those seen among modern people and among chimps.

The scientists went on to compare the Dmanisi remains with those of supposedly different species of human ancestor that lived in Africa at the time. They concluded that the variation among them was no greater than that seen at Dmanisi. Rather than being separate species, the human ancestors found in Africa from the same period may simply be normal variants of H erectus.
Maybe, maybe not, but based on what the article presents, it seems reasonable that a few purported species may well disappear from textbooks.

-- CAV

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