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Author Topic:   What bothers me about the evolution of Man
Tangle
Member
Posts: 8579
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 93 of 142 (643516)
12-07-2011 3:43 PM
Reply to: Message 88 by New Cat's Eye
12-06-2011 3:08 PM


Koko
CS writes:


Koko {a gorilla} has a tested IQ of between 70 and 95 on a human scale,

koko is indeed QI.

Sadly, you felt the need to both quote mine and not provide the source, which is not the kind of behaviour I expected of you - i came here to discuss and learn not point score at all costs. However, I'm an atheist and a rationalist so I am capable of true forgiveness.

Here's the full paragraph

During the course of the study, Koko has advanced further with language than any other non-human. Koko has a working vocabulary of over 1000 signs. Koko understands approximately 2,000 words of spoken English. Koko initiates the majority of conversations with her human companions and typically constructs statements averaging three to six words. Koko has a tested IQ of between 70 and 95 on a human scale, where 100 is considered "normal." Michael, the male silverback gorilla who grew up with Koko, had a working vocabulary of over 600 signs.

So Koko has been intensively trained since near birth and for 40 years by a very dedicated team of people and has learned around 2000 signs. She's been rewarded when she she gets it right and as a result has apparently achieved the language IQ level of a sub-normal human.

Unfortuantely, the team 'publish' most of their findings via the mass media - there are a few peer reviewed papers but I haven't seen any. I do know that there is a lot of controversy surrounding what she actually understands and what she's merely been conditioned respond to.

However, I did see a documentary on Koko a couple of years and I was very impressed; from watching it I'd say that she definately understood some things and is fairly obviously not clueless.

But really, she's not even on the same page as us. Not even close.


Life, don't talk to me about life.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by New Cat's Eye, posted 12-06-2011 3:08 PM New Cat's Eye has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 94 by New Cat's Eye, posted 12-07-2011 3:52 PM Tangle has not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 8579
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 104 of 142 (643551)
12-08-2011 3:01 AM
Reply to: Message 102 by Moon-Ra
12-07-2011 8:00 PM


Moon-Ra writes:

Going back to Tangle's point, an interesting question would be if those aliens that he mentions arrived here not today, but 50 thousand years ago. We, as species, would have virtually the same brain (50k year old skulls are anatomically identical to ours), but would the aliens consider us any more intelligent than Gorillas and Chimps?

Yes they would. Technology doesn't mean iPads. It means the manufacture and use of tools. They had axes, knives, spears, needles, fishing hooks and fire. They made leather and tents, huts, boats and houses. The lived and hunted in groups and they developed language.

As for having the same brain, that is probably not true. We had similar skulls but a lot was happening in them. They'd lost a large number of smell neurons and as language developed the part of the brain processing it had to increase. Sight and sound became more important. It seems that some parts of our brain began specialising quite early, probably as a result of language.

They would appear extreemly intelligent compared to other apes


Life, don't talk to me about life.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 102 by Moon-Ra, posted 12-07-2011 8:00 PM Moon-Ra has not replied

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 8579
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 105 of 142 (643553)
12-08-2011 4:33 AM
Reply to: Message 92 by New Cat's Eye
12-07-2011 3:05 PM


Re: Area 10
CS writes:

Which means that chimps have this same thing but ours is bigger. If that's not a difference in degree rather than kind then I don't what is.

The relative number of neurones is indeed a difference in quantity - around 400% more than the chimp. I suggest that an increase in brain size of that proportion in an area of the brain thought to be responsible for intelligence probably makes a material difference. (If you're a gibbon it's a difference of a factor of 30 - which sort of suggests we're not looking at everything that matters here, but that's another story.)

The FUNCTION of those neurones is a difference in KIND. Even from the crude sectioning that they did, they found several differences in how the neurones in humans were organised and connected, their density and what they were connected to.

If you look further into the prefrontal cortex in humans using fMRI you see that there are many areas that go to make up a neural moral network in people - a physical, moral sense. But that is yet another story which is being discussed elsewhere.

Edited by Tangle, : No reason given.


Life, don't talk to me about life.

This message is a reply to:
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Tangle
Member
Posts: 8579
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 112 of 142 (643816)
12-12-2011 5:22 AM


Well it looks like everything we thought we knew was wrong:

In conclusion, it appears that the traditional notion that disproportionately large frontal lobes and frontal cortices are the hallmark of hominid brain evolution is not supported.

This paper.......
http://www.anthro.ucsd.edu/...ndeferi%20files/NN_Frontal.pdf

..... looked a lot of ape and human brains, compared them and found that there's actually not much difference in size between great ape and human brain frontal cortices

Which destroys a lot of previous wisdom and leaves me scratching my head.

The idea that humans have disproportionately larger prefrontal lobes (which is where our cognitive functioning occurs) seems to have been founded on a dodgy sample size ie it came from possibly one half-lobe sample.

It does go on to speculate about human brain specialisation:

There is already some evidence .........[to] suggest that the internal organization and size of individual cortical areas are specialized among the hominoids. In a previous study, we found that the relative volume of white matter underlying prefrontal association cortices is larger in humans than in great apes ... This is compatible with the idea that neural connectivity has increased in the human brain. More recently we have shown that orangutans have a smaller orbitofrontal sector than other apes or humans ... which suggests that some differences can be found in small subsectors of the frontal lobe at a gross level. Thus, it seems possible, and even likely, that either subsectors of the frontal lobes or individual frontal cortical areas have become specialized during hominoid and hominid evolution. Cognitive specialization in each hominoid species would be related to mosaic evolution and reorganization of specific areas in this and other parts of the brain.

We really do know next to nothing about our brains and what we do think we know seems tentative..

Edited by Tangle, : were/where


Life, don't talk to me about life.

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 8579
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.9


Message 122 of 142 (644420)
12-17-2011 8:01 PM
Reply to: Message 119 by Portillo
12-17-2011 6:51 PM


Nothing more than
portlilo writes:

So if Cricks and Dawkins theories are "nothing more than random behaviour of nerve cells and molecules", why should we listen to them?

I don't think you should take particular notice of either Crick or Dawkins, they really have no knowledge of their own about neuroscience, but if you're genuinely interested in how our brain actually works, you should listen to those who work in the field.

You should also drop the 'nothing more than' phrase - it belittles what the brain accomplishes.


Life, don't talk to me about life.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 119 by Portillo, posted 12-17-2011 6:51 PM Portillo has not replied

  
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