Mailbag: What is human?

Regarding Gesher Benot Ya’aqov:

Am I missing something obvious? Your post, referring to the work at Gesher Benot Ya'aqov, refers to human activities 800,000 years ago. I'm just an interested layperson, but the rule of thumb I've always kept in my head was Homo sapiens sapiens beginning about 200kya, maybe double that for plain old Homo sapiens. What have I missed?

I always use human as the adjective for Homo. So Neandertals are human, too – and that gives a nice way not to have to fall back on “hominin.” I suppose the right version for sapiens would be “sapient”, although you don’t see it nearly as often as “modern”.