Friday, September 24, 2021

Algorithm Quantifies What Experts See When They Examine Skeletons


NIJ-supported researchers have designed a computer program that “thinks” like an expert forensic anthropologist. The algorithm is standardized and provides reproducible estimates of adult skeletal age at death that could be used as evidence in court. When tested with known-age skeletal collections, the program more accurately predicted age than traditional methods based on ilium and sacrum observations. 

The researchers say their open-access computer program and accompanying manual can be used by nearly any forensic practitioner to accurately age skeletal remains based on “yes” or “no” questions about 20 bony traits. 


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