Cool! I indeed like your basic question that you opened with. How do ~the experts~ know things... and to what extent are they just guessing (somewhat, significantly, entirely?!) Especially with modern computer-generated/doctored images --- they can render anything that strikes their fancy... and more and more often don't indicate that it is just a wishful simulation. Then the public gets ahold of it and takes it as gospel --- even devout atheists taking everything they see on the web or TV as --- gospel! Tom
But how do you know which is 'a wishful simulation', and which based on reasonable interpretation of the evidence?
For example, I understand that residues/breakdown products of melanin have been detected at some fossil sites, and since evolution tends to select out production of unnecessary bio molecules, it suggests that colouration was selected for.
The exact colouration may not be exact, but scientists will stress what they have evidence for, even if they don't have precise details.
It may be that the melanin (or whatever) was there for some other reason, but ignoring its presence would be wrong.
What does annoy me is the way that 'we' think we can interpret the spiritual and mystical life of neolithic people on the basis of scratches on bone and wall paintings.
Edited by gfamily, 11 August 2019 - 01:59 PM.