Normal human brain: Does this brain make my head look big?
Normal human brain: Does this brain make my head look big?Courtesy Mark Ryan
According to a new study reported in Discovery magazine, over the past 20,000 years, the human brain has been shrinking in size. Whether this is good or bad in terms of evolution or intelligence is another question. But whatever the case, as musician/surgeon Charles Limb shows in a recent TED Talk, the way the brain functions continues to amaze us.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

Zeek the Geek's picture

Brain size, whether absolute or relative, does not really determine how intelligent or capable we are. Look at squirrel monkeys. These small primates live in South and Central America, and they are one of our few close relations that has a much larger brain relative to their body size than humans do. Yet, they have not demonstrated tool use or widespread elements of culture like other non-human primates do. Also, consider Neanderthals; with an average cranial capacity of ~1400 ccs (closely comparable with modern humans), they were far less flexible than their hominin contemporaries and died out.

Never fear. Brain size is just a number; it's how you use your brain that counts!

posted on Sat, 01/08/2011 - 10:48am
mdr's picture
mdr says:

You're right, Zeek, Cro-magnon brains were something like 10 percent larger than our own and look where that got them.

posted on Sat, 01/08/2011 - 12:59pm
Anonymous's picture
Anonymous says:


posted on Sun, 01/16/2011 - 9:05pm

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