Interesting Topics on Evolution

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High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 22, 2013 - 08:25pm PT
Bringing back one Neanderthal? What are you going to do, make a pet out of the poor thing?

What, Jan, don't you think the benefits would far, far, far outweigh the risks?
moosedrool

Trad climber
lost, far away from Poland
Jan 22, 2013 - 08:55pm PT
As far as I know, nobody cloned a human yet. Most people see it either too risky or unethical. It will probably happen in the future, but I don't think a neanderthal will ever be cloned. That would be something similar to Nazis' experiments on humans. Neanderthals are our ancestors but would they be able to adapt to our modern world? What if not? Would you keep him/her in a cage? Scientific curiosity can't justify it.

High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 22, 2013 - 10:11pm PT
As we mature in our thinking about evolution and genetics...



...we will learn to distinguish between responsible eugenics and irresponsible eugenics.
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 22, 2013 - 11:09pm PT
Oh sure...the Boobs thread gets deleted and now my thread gets a few hits. Come to think of it, wonder what the whole story on the evolution of boobs is. Is their currect, glorious expression primarily the result of sexual or "natural" selection?
moosedrool

Trad climber
lost, far away from Poland
Jan 23, 2013 - 12:59am PT
but I don't think a neanderthal will ever be cloned. That would be something similar to Nazis' experiments on humans.

On what do you base the first assertion?

It is my belief in our humanity (naÔve? maybe).

The Nazi comparison is absurd on the face of it.

Nazis experimented on humans for the benefit of many. I donít see a difference between their philosophy and experimental cloning of a Neanderthal.

Neanderthals are our ancestors

That is only partially true.

Semantics.
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Jan 23, 2013 - 09:20am PT
Is their currect, glorious expression primarily the result of sexual or "natural" selection?

Surgical, I'd say.

DMR
Dingus Milktoast

Gym climber
And every fool knows, a dog needs a home, and...
Jan 23, 2013 - 09:27am PT
Hellyeah let's clone an extinct primate species I mean, think of the benefit!!! (lol)



Here's the Program Director



Think of the benefits, people!

DMT
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 23, 2013 - 10:00am PT
Serious students of evolution should check out this review of Thomas Nagel's latest book in the NYR.

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archives/2013/feb/07/awaiting-new-darwin/


From Allen Orr, the book reviewer,
"a scientific education is, to a considerable extent, an exercise in taming the authority of oneís intuition."

Ain't that the truth.

.....

Thomas Nagel,
The existence of consciousness seems to imply that the physical description of the universe, in spite of its richness and explanatory power, is only part of the truth,

So it "seems" to him. Perhaps this is why Nagel ended up a philosopher instead of a engineer, a bioengineer. (??)

In my (science and engineering-driven) view (shared by others) the existence of consciousness does NOT imply that the physical description of the universe is only part of the truth.

And in the very next sentence, Nagel adds...
[The existence of consciousness seems to imply that] the natural order is far less austere than it would be if physics and chemistry accounted for everything.


My view is, Nagel needs to expand his view beyond physics and chemistry to biology and bioengineering (in other words, to the sciences of how parts and systems interrelate and function synergistically to yield, in the end, useful functionality - not unlike computers, electronics and the internet.

In short, Nagel needs to think less like the ol' time philosopher and more like a computer-literate, information theory-savvy systems analyst or engineer.

What cowboy, even library scholar or librarian, 100 years ago could've conceived that 10,000 books would in the next century be rendered on a piece of plastic or sand? Or that a Go-Pro could render the day's climb start to finish - in HD no less - on same? All ultimately on a basis of physics, of course; and in between on a basis of parts, systems and synergy.

It's not "just" physics and chemistry. It's physics and chemistry and systems (of parts and wholes and interconnects) evolved over millions of years, extant only because their traits (features if not functions) confer existability.

T Nagel needs to either retire or go back to school.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 23, 2013 - 01:49pm PT
Another interesting topic: the evolution of hormonal mechanisms in cooperation strategies.

http://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/280/1755/20122765.abstract.html?cpetoc

I know I've suspected it a long time now. And, btw, strangely, an image that always seems to come to mind when I think about this subject: seeing a male giraffe giving oral sex to another (a female I presumed) at a zoo some 20 years ago.

I'd bet for every one we know a little something about, there are 50 others we know nothing about. We are sacks of biochemistry, not just molecular biology, evolved into stable structures over billions of years. So says evolutionary biology!

.....

eeyonkee, I've always been more into legs, ass and hips than boobs. I consider it a strength. :)
moosedrool

Trad climber
lost, far away from Poland
Jan 23, 2013 - 03:34pm PT
Oxitocin is old news.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2183953/Oxytocin-Nose-happiness-Doctors-discover-nasal-spray-stop-couples-having-heated-arguments.html

I've always been more into legs, ass and hips than boobs

You probably carry an anti-boob mutation. Nothing serious, but think about your offspring :)
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 26, 2013 - 07:18pm PT
eeyonkee, here's a short video of Steven Pinker, "Better Angels," you might like.

http://vimeo.com/58059626

Steven Pinker's the man.



Tag: Interesting Topics of Evolution / Cultural Evolution / A History of Violence

.....

Oxitocin is old news.

Oxytocin is just one of many many players, as I'm sure you know, in the endocrine control system of bodies and behavior.
moosedrool

Trad climber
lost, far away from Poland
Jan 26, 2013 - 07:50pm PT
eeyonkee, here's a short video of Steven Pinker, "Better Angels," you might like.

Can I watch it too?


oops, I already did.
eeyonkee

Trad climber
Golden, CO
Topic Author's Reply - Jan 26, 2013 - 08:31pm PT
Nice find, HFCS. I don't know who I like best, Steven Pinker or Richard Dawkins. They are both such great writers and thinkers. I've been reading three of Pinker's books over the last couple of months. The other two being "The Blank Slate" and "How the Mind Works". Just started reading two of Dawkin's books again, "River out of Eden" and "The Blind Watchmaker". Reading any of these books makes you feel smart.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:15pm PT
re: Interesting topics

There seems to be a robust (but somewhat hushed) debate over just how long (5 generations or 50 or 500) it will take to "dumb down" to the proverbial dodo bird equivalent or eyeless salamander now that we've made our environment from sea o shining sea a relatively soft place to fall - and, of course, to reproduce - thanks to medicine, social welfare, modern law and democracies, etc..

In other words, just how long will it take the forces of entropy to dull the gene pool - first, enough to notice, and later, enough to cause problems - in the absence of Nature Past's red in tooth and claw honing pressures.

Of course the evolved features likely affected in our case won't be wings (dodo bird or galapagos cormorant) as much as physical prowess (speed, musculature) and brains. Eyes, too.

Needless to say, I'd be more concerned with this implication of evolutionary theory and genetics (maybe even eugenics) and technology and ethics if I were going to be around 500 years from now. I won't be.

Nonetheless it's interesting I think to think about.
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:20pm PT
It's not "just" physics and chemistry.

that's right, it is only physics... which describes everything else.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:24pm PT
that's right, it is only physics...

You need to change your perspective, my man.

Your recent ice climbing experience, for instance, wasn't "just" physics or "only" physics. To name just one other item, it was also actin and myosin filaments interacting in a metabolic matrix. This needs to be appreciated, too.

Along with other so-called "levels of explanation" or "levels of operation."

That was the point, Mr High Energy Physics man.
part-time communist

Mountain climber
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:25pm PT
needs to think less like the ol' time philosopher and more like a computer-literate, information theory-savvy systems analyst or engineer.


that's why we have analytic philosophy. The dominant branch of philosophy these days.
part-time communist

Mountain climber
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:33pm PT
Has anyone seen this article? I thought it was amusing. I saw it when someone posted it on facebook a while back

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/4575024/Youll-have-smaller-brains-more-wrinkles-and-fewer-teeth.html


I would say its safe to say that technological advancement, at an advanced enough level, will allow us to shape our own fate with the ability to tinker with genetics.
High Fructose Corn Spirit

Gym climber
-A race of corn eaters
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:43pm PT
Yeah, note your qualifier there...

at an advanced enough level

We can hope. ;)
Ed Hartouni

Trad climber
Livermore, CA
Jan 28, 2013 - 10:54pm PT
I think that troll on p2 of High on Boulder bit me...

you seemed to take the bait HFCS, and rather quickly... oh, do you ever post on climbing threads? or started a climbing thread? I forget...
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