Glad to see that you are back in the thread,and yes it is possible that somethings may be copied from one culture by another through observation.I have learned things in my trade or other associated trades in the same manner,however I was not hiding behind a rock or tree when it happened, I was in an environment where I was interacting with others and able to observe them while they worked.They knew I was there, they either didn't care or were not aware that I was observing them.
The settlement of North America by Europeans gives us some examples of interactions where one culture aids in the survival of another.Thanksgiving Day is based on how one culture saw that another new culture was not able to survive without their help, and took compassion on them.Could something similar have happened with Neanderthals and Homo-Sapiens? Neanderthals had existed in colder climates and would have been well adapted to surviving, some of the articles in the pages of this thread have shown that Neanderthals had compassion and cared for others that had been injured or unable to survive without assistance,is it possible that they mentored Homo-Sapiens in some ways?
The difference though is that you were interacting in an environment of your own species. Obvioiusly this could not be true of HSS and the Neanderthal.
Which is not the case when we are in the environment of our nearest primate relatives, since they tend to take exception to our invading their territory.
It's just as possible that both groups received much of their learning from before they split off from H. heidelbergensis. One should also keep in mind that at the time Neanderthals had gone extinct in Europe (circa 39,000 BP) that the earliest HSS in Europe had only been there for about 2000 years. And yet their level of cultural structure was already comparable in many ways to the Neanderthals. That kind of puts into question just how much would have been shared between cultures IMO.