Comparing the simulation to the original Flores skull discovered in 2003, McNulty and Baab were able to demonstrate conclusively that the original "hobbit" skull fits the expectations for a small fossil hominin species and not a modern human. Their study was published online this month in the Journal of Human Evolution.
The cranial structure of the fossilized skull, says the study, clearly places it in humanity's genus Homo, even though it would be smaller in both body and brain size than any other member. The results of the study suggest that the theorized "hobbit" species may have undergone a process of size reduction after branching off from Homo erectus (one of modern day humanity's distant ancestors) or even something more primitive.
Here is the conclusion from the Journal of Human Evolution article that is currently in press:
Any way you shake it, the evidence is adding up that this does indeed represent a species of hominin/hominid that is separate from what else is going on in Wallacea at this point in time and further supports this "bush" notion of hominid evolution. As modern humans, we have grown accustomed to the idea of being the only species of Homo running around. As far as fauna are concerned, that is the exception to the rule. I think we also cling to this unilineal notion of human evolution in East Asia that is turning out to be unwarranted. There was, evidently, a bit of experimentation going on. What is stunning is the sheer primitiveness of the H. floresiensis fossils.
Baab, K and McNulty, K (2009) Size, shape, and assymetry in fossil hominis: The status of the LB1 cranium based on 3D morphometric analyses. Journal of Human Evolution. (in press)