Just a quick comment, somewhat tongue in cheek.
I flicked the TV on for a couple of minutes the other night, nothing worth watching as usual. But there was a show on SBS about Neanderthal man.
The bit I saw had a reconstruction of the face of a Neanderthal over the bones. A lot of very interesting assumptions there. But the really interesting thing was that when they had finished the model looked like Liam Neeson. I'm not kidding.
It kinda reinforced (unscientifically of course) a little question I have had for a while...
Is the difference between Neanderthal and me, for example, any greater than the difference between a Kalahari Bushman and a Scandinavian, or between an African and a Japanese person?
I think we tend to assume that Neanderthal were stupid and backward because they didn't have the tools we have. But 99.9% of us don't develop any new technologies either.
I think there is more proof needed before we can conclude that man has evolved since Neanderthal and not merely developed new technologies.