Migration To Americas Came in Waves, According to Big Data

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tags: migration



Big Data is used everywhere, from marketing to election campaigns. Now, a new study has applied the remarkable insights it can offer to shed light on the enduring mystery surrounding the history of migration and settlement of the Americas.

Key to the study was an analysis of isolates – “languages that have no demonstrable connection to any other language with which it can be classified into a family,” according to lead author Mark A. Sicoli, a University of Virginia linguistic anthropologist. North and South America boast an unparalleled number of isolates, 26 in North America and 55 in South America. By comparison, only one isolate exists in Europe, and nine in Asia.

After analysing over 100 linguistic features in languages from the Americas, Sicoli and colleagues discovered that the patterns of contact and migration among the early settlers of North and South America were actually far more complex than traditionally thought.




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