The Presidential Daily Brief

intriguing

  1. Big Data Suggests War, Not Farming, Built the First Complex Human Societies

    Peter Turchin and his research team have come to believe that sewing strife, not seeds, led our ancestors to morph from tiny packs of hunter-gatherers into larger, more permanent social units. Turchin’s work, which applies big data to historical research, could do nothing less than completely up-end our beliefs about our ancestors: that farming set humans on the road to complex social forms that would one day lead us to LOLcat pirates. Turchin admits the models aren’t perfect, but they demonstrate that our new ways of crunching numbers may reshape our view of civilation’s oldest challenges

    Source: Wired

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