- Poverty @WikiPedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poverty
- Poverty is general scarcity or dearth, or the state of one who lacks a certain amount of material possessions or money.
- “Your Brain on Poverty: Why Poor People Seem to Make Bad Decisions (And why their “bad” decisions might be more rational than you’d think.)” by Derek Thompson (The Atlantic; 2013.11.22) – http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2013/11/your-brain-on-poverty-why-poor-people-seem-to-make-bad-decisions/281780/
- “This Is Why Poor People’s Bad Decisions Make Perfect Sense” by Linda Tirado (The Huffington Post; 2013.11.22) – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/linda-tirado/why-poor-peoples-bad-decisions-make-perfect-sense_b_4326233.html
- “Why I Make Terrible Decisions, or, poverty thoughts” by Killermar (2013.11.22) – http://killermartinis.kinja.com/why-i-make-terrible-decisions-or-poverty-thoughts-1450123558
- “The High Cost of Not Having Enough” by Emily Badger (The Atlantic > Cities; 2013.09.04) – http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2013/09/high-cost-not-having-enough/6759/
- “How Poverty Taxes the Brain” by Emily Badger (The Atlantic > Cities; 2013.08.29) – http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2013/08/how-poverty-taxes-brain/6716/
- “Poverty Impedes Cognitive Function” by Anandi Mani1, Sendhil Mullainathan, Eldar Shafir and Jiaying Zhao (Science; 2013.08.30; Vol. 341 no. 6149 pp. 976-980) – http://www.sciencemag.org/content/341/6149/976.abstract
- Burden of Poverty: Lacking money or time can lead one to make poorer decisions, possibly because poverty imposes a cognitive load that saps attention and reduces effort. Mani et al. (p. 976; see the Perspective by Vohs) gathered evidence from shoppers in a New Jersey mall and from farmers in Tamil Nadu, India. They found that considering a projected financial decision, such as how to pay for a car repair, affects people’s performance on unrelated spatial and reasoning tasks. Lower-income individuals performed poorly if the repairs were expensive but did fine if the cost was low, whereas higher-income individuals performed well in both conditions, as if the projected financial burden imposed no cognitive pressure. Similarly, the sugarcane farmers from Tamil Nadu performed these tasks better after harvest than before.
- Abstract: The poor often behave in less capable ways, which can further perpetuate poverty. We hypothesize that poverty directly impedes cognitive function and present two studies that test this hypothesis. First, we experimentally induced thoughts about finances and found that this reduces cognitive performance among poor but not in well-off participants. Second, we examined the cognitive function of farmers over the planting cycle. We found that the same farmer shows diminished cognitive performance before harvest, when poor, as compared with after harvest, when rich. This cannot be explained by differences in time available, nutrition, or work effort. Nor can it be explained with stress: Although farmers do show more stress before harvest, that does not account for diminished cognitive performance. Instead, it appears that poverty itself reduces cognitive capacity. We suggest that this is because poverty-related concerns consume mental resources, leaving less for other tasks. These data provide a previously unexamined perspective and help explain a spectrum of behaviors among the poor. We discuss some implications for poverty policy.
- “How Near-death Experiences Work” by Ed Grabianowski (HowStuffWorks) – http://science.howstuffworks.com/science-vs-myth/extrasensory-perceptions/near-death-experience.htm
- “Near-death experiences are ‘electrical surge in dying brain” by Rebecca Morelle (BBC World Service; 2013.08.12) – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23672150
- “Under certain unfamiliar and confusing circumstances – like near-death – the brain becomes over-stimulated and hyper-excited”
- “Brains Of Dying Rats Yield Clues About Near-Death Experiences” (NPR; 2013.08.12) – http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2013/08/12/211324316/brains-of-dying-rats-yield-clues-about-near-death-experiences
- “Bringing people back from the dead” (BBC News; 2013.04.23) – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-22154552
- “Near-death experience ‘all in the mind'” (BBC News; 2011.10.30) – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15494379
- “New light on near-death flashes” (BBC News; 2010.04.08) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8607660.stm
- “Study into near-death experiences” by Jane Dreaper (2008.09.18) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/7621608.stm
- “‘Near death’ has biological basis” (BBC News; 2006.04.11) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/4898726.stm
- “Show me heaven” by Amanda Hancox (BBC NEws; 2004.01.26) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/3429619.stm
- at WikiPedia – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Near-death_experience
- “The Life Reports” by David Brooks (New York Times; 2011.11.24) – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/25/opinion/the-life-reports.html?_r=1&src=me&ref=general
- “The Authobiographical Consciousness of Aging” by Edmund Sherman (Morris Publishing 2000; ISBN 0-9701446-0-1′ LCCCN 00-91343)
- this book is out of the print
- “For All Time: A Complete Guide to Writing Your Family History” by Charley Kempthorne (Boynton/Cook; 1996; ISBN-10: 0867093811; ISBN-13: 978-0867093810)- http://www.amazon.com/All-Time-Complete-Writing-History/dp/0867093811/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1322280896&sr=8-1
- review: [DEARMYRTLE-L] BookShelf: For All Time: A Complete Guide to Writing Your Family History (1999.03.02) – http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/DEARMYRTLE/1999-03/0920384853
- Charley Kempthorne’s “The LifeStory Institute” – http://www.thelifestoryinstitute.com/LifeStoryMagazine.html
- Capturing Memory site – http://www.capturingmemories.com/reading.html
- Collection of Autism related articles at Nature – http://www.nature.com/news/specials/autism/index.html
- “Special issue on neuroscience: The autism enigma” (Nature, 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/news/2011/111102/full/479021a.html – Published online 2 November 2011 | Nature 479, 21 (2011) | doi:10.1038/479021a
- “The prevalence puzzle: Autism counts” by Karen Weintraub (Nature; 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/news/2011/111102/full/479022a.html
- Shifting diagnoses and heightened awareness explain only part of the apparent rise in autism. Scientists are struggling to explain the rest.
- “Scientists and autism: When geeks meet” by Lizzie Buchen (Nature; 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/news/2011/111102/full/479025a.html
- Psychologist Simon Baron-Cohen thinks scientists and engineers could be more likely to have a child with autism. Some researchers say the proof isn’t there.
- “Changing perceptions: The power of autism” by Laurent Mottron (Nature; 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v479/n7371/full/479033a.html
- Recent data — and personal experience — suggest that autism can be an advantage in some spheres, including science, says Laurent Mottron.
- “Autism’s fight for facts: A voice for science” by Meredith Wadman – http://www.nature.com/news/2011/111102/full/479028a.html
- Convinced by the evidence that vaccines do not cause autism, Alison Singer started a research foundation that pledges to put science first.
- “The mind’s tangled web” (Nature 279, 5; 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v479/n7371/full/479005a.html>
- Efforts to elucidate how genes and the environment shape the development of autism, although making progress, still fall far short of their goal.
- “The prevalence puzzle: Autism counts” by Karen Weintraub (Nature; 2011.11.02) – http://www.nature.com/news/2011/111102/full/479022a.html
- “Autism in a mouse” (Nature 478, 9; 2011.10.06) – http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v478/n7367/full/478009c.html
- “Autism linked to hundreds of spontaneous genetic mutations” by Heidi Ledford (Nature; 2011.06.09)
- Analysis suggests that girls are partially shielded from effects of the changes.
- “Hopes grow over potential autism treatment” by Daniel Cressey (Nature; 2010.02.16) – http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100216/full/news.2010.73.html
- Oxytocin hormone shown to improve social interaction.
- ARC (Autism Research Center) – http://www.autismresearchcentre.com/
- Downloadable Tests – http://www.autismresearchcentre.com/arc_tests
- Professor Simon Baron-Cohen – http://www.autismresearchcentre.com/people_Baron-Cohen
- “Improve Your Focus With Distraction-Free Writing Tools” by Robert Strohmeyer (PCWorld; 2011.03.09) – http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/221735/improve_your_focus_with_distractionfree_writing_tools.html
- “Write Space Turns Word 2007 Into a Distraction-Free Editor” by Robert Strohmeyer (PCWorld; 2011.05.30) – http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/228982/write_space_turns_word_2007_into_a_distractionfree_editor.html
- “Writer for IPad Wants to Focus on Your Writing” by David Chartier (Macworld; 2010.09.22) – http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/206001/writer_for_ipad_wants_to_focus_on_your_writing.html
- “Defeat Tech Distractions” by Christopher Null (PCWorld; 2010.05.05) – http://www.pcworld.com/article/195672/defeat_tech_distractions.html – We are the Distracted Generation: Our gizmos and gadgets clamor for our attention, leaving us dazed and confused. Here are the worst offenders, and what you can do to reclaim your focus.
- WriteMonkey – http://writemonkey.com/
- Dark Room – http://they.misled.us/dark-room [Windows]
- WriteRoom – http://www.hogbaysoftware.com/products/writeroom [MAC]
- OmniWriter – http://www.ommwriter.com/ [MAC]
- Writespace – http://writespace.codeplex.com/ – a fullscreen writing environment for Word.
Microsoft office foolies
- “Five Microsoft Word Nightmares–and How You Can Fix Them” by Lincoln Spector (PCWorld; 2011.05.10) – http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/227558/five_microsoft_word_nightmaresand_how_you_can_fix_them.html
- “Considering the Humanity of Nonhumans” by James Gorman (New York Times; 2013.12.10) – http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/10/science/considering-the-humanity-of-nonhumans.html
- The issues of self-awareness and of awareness of past and future strike to the heart of a common-sense view of what personhood might be. Chimps, elephants and some cetaceans have shown that they can recognize themselves in a mirror.
- “Unlikely Partners, Freeing Chimps From the Lab” by James Gorman (New York Times; 2013.07.08) – http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/09/science/unlikely-partners-freeing-chimps-from-the-lab.html?pagewanted=all
- “Complex thinking goes beyond primates: Dolphins understand zero, elephants rescue each other” by Seth Borenstein (Winnipeg Free Press; 2012.06.24) – http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/arts-and-life/life/sci_tech/complex-thinking-goes-beyond-primates-dolphins-understand-zero-elephants-rescue-each-other-160191285.html
- Dolphins understand concept of “zero”. Can do everything that chimpanzees and bonobos can do. Likely have personalities.
- Animal intelligence “is not a linear thing,” said Duke University researcher Brian Hare, who studies bonobos, which are one of man’s closest relatives, and dogs, which are not. “Think of it like a toolbox,” he said. “Some species have an amazing hammer. Some species have an amazing screwdriver.”
- Elephants work cooperatively, solving problems faster than chimps.
- “Line blurs between man, animal: Monkeys do math, baboons seem to read, orangutans plan ahead” by Seth Borenstein (Winnipeg Free Press; 2012.06.24) – http://www.winnipegfreepress.com/arts-and-life/life/sci_tech/line-blurs-between-man-animal-monkeys-do-math-baboons-seem-to-read-orangutans-plan-ahead-160191235.html
- Some of the shifts in scientific understanding of animals are leading to ethical debates. When Emory University researcher Lori Marino in 2001 co-wrote a groundbreaking study on dolphins recognizing themselves in mirrors, proving they have a sense of self similar to humans, she had a revelation. “The more you learn about them, the more you realize that they do have the capacity and characteristics that we think of as a person,” Marino said. “I think it’s impossible to ignore the ethical implications of these kinds of findings.”
- “The concept of “ME”” by Fakir Mohan Sahoo (2011.05.27) – http://atlasofmind.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/the-concept-of-%E2%80%9Cme%E2%80%9D/
- “Improving the mirror test” by Vincent Tijms (The Matter of Mind blog; 2010.11.19) – http://tijmz.wordpress.com/2010/11/19/improving-the-mirror-test/
- “Pigs Can Learn How To Use Mirrors” – http://camelswithhammers.wordpress.com/2009/10/09/pigs-can-learn-how-to-use-mirrors/
- In just five hours, an average farm pig can learn how to interpret an image in the mirror and use it to find hidden food.
- “Animal Sentience” (web site) – http://www.livesofanimals.org/
- The Nonhuman Rights Project – http://www.nonhumanrightsproject.org/
- Aeon Magazine articles on animal sentience:
- “I, cockroach” by Brandon Keim (Aeon Magazine) – http://www.aeonmagazine.com/nature-and-cosmos/do-cockroaches-have-a-form-of-consciousness/
- Do insects feel pain? Are they conscious? A science kit for at-home cyborg cockroaches provokes the hard questions
- “Kindred spirits” by Barbara J King (Aeon Magazine) – http://www.aeonmagazine.com/nature-and-cosmos/how-do-animals-form-families/
- Animals have friends, enemies, allies and life-long companions. Human relationships aren’t so unique after all
- While scientists and animal caretakers have only just begun to record qualitative data about animals’ responses to death, and to address larger questions that bear on mutuality of being, we have strong clues that suggest the fully interdependent nature of animals’ non-kin relationships. Mutuality of being need not be expressed only through language. Animals, too, can feel their lives deeply, and they might even feel the co-presence of others — whether related by blood or not — in those lives.
- “Being a sandpiper” by Brandon Keim – http://www.aeonmagazine.com/nature-and-cosmos/the-science-of-animal-consciousness/
- Animals have thoughts, feelings and personality. Why have we taken so long to catch up with animal consciousness?
- “I, cockroach” by Brandon Keim (Aeon Magazine) – http://www.aeonmagazine.com/nature-and-cosmos/do-cockroaches-have-a-form-of-consciousness/
- “What Is it Like to Be a Bat?” – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/What_Is_it_Like_to_Be_a_Bat%3F
- is an influential paper by the American philosopher, Thomas Nagel, first published in The Philosophical Review in October 1974, and later in Nagel’s Mortal Questions (1979). In it, Nagel argues that materialist theories of mind omit the essential component of consciousness, namely that there is something that it feels like to be a particular conscious thing. An organism has conscious mental states, he argues, “if and only if there is something that it is like to be that organism—something it is like for the organism.”
- “Is there anything it is like to be a bat?” by Hacker (P.M.S ???)- http://info.sjc.ox.ac.uk/scr/hacker/docs/To%20be%20a%20bat.pdf
- “What is it like to be a bat?” by Thomas Nagel – http://organizations.utep.edu/portals/1475/nagel_bat.pdf
- “WHAT IS IT LIKE TO BE A HUMAN (INSTEAD OF A BAT)?” – http://faculty.washington.edu/bonjour/Unpublished%20articles/MARTIAN.html
- Primate cognition (Wikipedia) –http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Primate_cognition
- “Chimps may have the ability to understand language too – humans just get more practice, say researchers” by Rob Waugh (Mail Online; 2011.11.01) – http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2056114/Chimps-ability-understand-language–humans-just-practice-say-researchers.html
- “Orangutan Caught Red-Handed Using Technology, Fishing with a Spear” by Michael Graham (Tree Hugger; 2008.04.28) – http://www.treehugger.com/files/2008/04/orangutan-fishing-with-spear.php
- “Rhesus Monkeys Appear to Have a Form of Self-Awareness Not Previously Attributed to Them, Research Suggests” (ScienceDaily; 2011.07.06) – http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/07/110705183630.htm
- Clever Monkeys (PBS) – http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/clever-monkeys/introduction/3946/
- Just how smart are monkeys? Their innate curiosity leads them to try new things, but it’s their culture — the passing of information from one generation to the next — that teaches them much of what they know. Their young learn by reaching out with their hands to experience the world around them, grasping new objects, slowly piecing together an understanding of their society. They learn from their families how to find food, communicate, recognize kin, even use tools, medicine, and language. It is these familiar actions that make monkeys so fascinating to humans. We can see ourselves in their faces, our nature in their actions.
NATURE travels around the world to visit some of these fascinating primates. From tiny pygmy marmoset in South America to aggressive baboons of Africa and compassionate toque macaques in Sri Lanka, Clever Monkeys challenges many ideas about what is purely “human.”
- Ape ‘Utterances” Have Been Reexamined (Babel’s Dawn blog; 2011.01.16) – http://www.babelsdawn.com/babels_dawn/2011/01/ape-utterances-have-been-reexamined.html
- “For the First Time, Monkeys Recognize Themselves in the Mirror, Indicating Self-Awareness” (ScienceDaily; 2010.09.30) – http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/09/100929171739.htm
- … Scientists who have used the mark test to explore self-awareness have found the quality in one species of bird, in one individual elephant, and in dolphins and orangutans. And so instead of asking how self-awareness evolved only among primates, they face the larger question of how it evolved multiple times in distantly related species. …
- “Humans And Monkeys Share Machiavellian Intelligence” (Science Daily; 2007.20.07) – http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/10/071024144314.htm>
- When it comes to their social behavior, people sometimes act like monkeys, or more specifically, like rhesus macaques, a type of monkey that shares with humans strong tendencies for nepotism and political maneuvering, according to research by Dario Maestripieri, an expert on primate behavior and an Associate Professor in Comparative Human Development and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Chicago.
- “Monkeys show Machiavellian intelligence” (UPI; 2007.10.25) – http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2007/10/25/Monkeys-show-Machiavellian-intelligence/UPI-47291193336900/
- Capuchin monkey intelligence (WikiPedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capuchin_monkey#Intelligence
- “Bucknell primate laboratory tests monkeys’ intelligence” (2003.04.13) – http://www.post-gazette.com/healthscience/20030412primate5.asp
- “Putting monkey intelligence to the test” (Japan Probe; ) – http://www.japanprobe.com/2009/03/16/putting-monkey-intelligence-to-the-test/
- “Monkey see, monkey infer” by William J. Cromie (Harvard News Office; 2007) – http://www.news.harvard.edu/gazette/2006/05.04/09-infer.html: Monkeys draw novel conclusions, researchers say
- “Monkey IQ and the evolution of intelligence” (The Rational Response Squad forums) – http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/17913
- “Chimpanzees’ 66 gestures revealed” by Victoria Gill (BBC News; 2011.05.05) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_9475000/9475408.stm
- “Chatting chimps in Uganda, Africa are ‘socially aware'” by Matt Walker (BBC News; 2010.07.09) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_8803000/8803403.stm
- “Rocker Peter Gabriel recalls jamming with bonobos now living in Des Moines, Iowa” (DesMoinesRegister; 2011.05.13) – http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/index.php/2011/05/13/rocker-peter-gabriel-recalls-jamming-with-bonobos-now-living-in-des-moines-iowa/
- Peter Gabriel jams with Ape Trust’s Bonobos (Monkeys In The News blog; 2005.04.26) – http://www.monkeyday.org/2005/04/peter-gabriel-jams-with-ape-trusts.html
- “Peter Gabriel Teaching Monkeys To Play Keyboards” by Corey Moss (MTV; 2001.07.12) – http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1445116/peter-gabriel-ape-music-teacher.jhtml – Renaissance rocker working with 12 bonobo apes at Georgia State University in Atlanta.
- Great Ape Trust – http://www.greatapetrust.org/
- “Peter Gabriel on Dr. Sue Savage-Rumbaugh” (Great Ape Trust Blog; 2011.05.17) – http://www.greatapetrust.org/about-the-trust/great-ape-trust-blog/peter-gabriel-on-dr-sue-savage-rumbaugh
- Elephant intelligence (WikiPedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elephant_intelligence
Mammals: Cetaceans (dolphins, whales, …)
- “Talk with a dolphin via underwater translation machine” by MacGregor Campbell (New Scientist – issue 2811; 2011.05.09) – http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21028115.400-talk-with-a-dolphin-via-underwater-translation-machine.html
- “The implications of interspecies communication” by MacGregor Campbell (New Scientist – issue 2811; 2011.05.09) – http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg21028113.000-the-implications-of-interspecies-communication.html
- “Intelligence of Dolphins: Ethical and Policy Implications” – http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2010/webprogram/Session1526.html
- Charter: The dolphin brain has a large cerebral cortex and a substantial amount of associational neocortex. Most anatomical ratios that assess cognitive capacity place it second only to the human brain. More important, recent research in marine science has revealed that dolphins have a remarkable degree of cognitive and affective sophistication. For example, dolphins can recognize their image in a mirror as a reflection of themselves — a finding that indicates self-awareness similar to that seen in higher primates and elephants. These and other studies, which have found that dolphins are also capable of advanced cognitive abilities such as problem-solving, artificial language comprehension, and complex social behavior, indicate that dolphins are far more intellectually and emotionally sophisticated than previously thought. Considerable research indicates that they are significantly different from fish and other marine species, and this research has significance for commercial policy and practice. This symposium will present the scientific findings and explore their ethical and policy implications.
- Lori Marino (Emory University): Anatomical Basis of Dolphin Intelligence – http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2010/webprogram/Paper1487.html
- Many modern dolphin brains are significantly larger than our own and second in mass to the human brain when corrected for body size. Despite evolving along a different neuroanatomical trajectory than human brains, cetacean brains exhibit several features that are correlated with complex intelligence, including a large expanse of neocortical volume that is more convoluted than our own, extensive insular and cingulate regions, and highly differentiated cellular regions.
These characteristics of dolphin brains are consistent with current behavioral evidence. In this presentation I will discuss the neuroanatomical basis of complex intelligence in dolphins, how the neuroanatomy provides evidence for psychological continuity between humans and dolphins, and the profound implications for the ethics of human-dolphin interactions. Specifically, I will focus on the growing worldwide industry of capturing and confining dolphins for amusement in marine park shows, “swim-with-dolphin” and “dolphin-assisted therapy” facilities. Our current knowledge of dolphin brain complexity and intelligence suggests that these practices are potentially psychologically harmful to dolphins and present a misinformed picture of their natural intellectual capacities.
- Diana Reiss (Hunter College of the City University of New York): Self-Awareness and Dolphins – http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2010/webprogram/Paper1488.html
- Bottlenose dolphins are highly social mammals with large and complex brains. Studies conducted in the field and aquaria have provided increasing evidence for the dolphin’s cognitive-social prowess, revealing that dolphins are cultural animals – much of their behavior is learned and passed down through generations.
They have demonstrated the capacity for mirror-self recognition (MSR), a hallmark of a level of self-awareness, previously thought to be restricted to humans but also shared by the great apes, elephants and magpies. Despite profound differences in neuroanatomical characteristics and evolutionary histories dolphins, primates (human and great apes), and elephants show striking parallels in both the progression of behavioral stages and actual responses to a mirror providing compelling evidence for convergent cognitive evolution. MSR may index an increased self-other distinction that also underlies the social complexity and altruistic tendencies shared among these species.
Can our scientific knowledge be used to influence international policy decisions and ethical considerations of the treatment of dolphins? Do scientific facts translate and transcend cultural boundaries? In the dolphin drive hunts in Japan, there are no restrictions on capture or killing methods of the highly sentient dolphin and other small whales. The killing methods fail to meet even the most minimal requirements used in U.S. laboratories and slaughterhouses. Scientists are making the argument on the basis of the scientific evidence that the drive hunts are unjustifiable and indefensible in that they inflict pain and suffering on animals that are intelligent, sentient, socially complex and have capacity to experience pain and suffering.
- Thomas I. White (Loyola Marymount University): Ethical Implications of Dolphin Intelligence: Dolphins as Nonhuman Persons – http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2010/webprogram/Paper1489.html
- The scientific research on dolphin intelligence suggests that dolphins are “nonhuman persons.” (Like humans, dolphins appear to be self-conscious,
unique individuals [with distinctive personalities, memories and a sense of self] who are vulnerable to a wide range of physical and emotional pain and harm, and who have the power to reflect upon and choose their actions.) At the same time, fundamental differences between humans and dolphins have also surfaced. (The dolphin brain has an older architecture than the human brain, and dolphin and human brains have features not found in the other. Dolphins possess a sense that humans lack [echolocation]. Humans and dolphins have profoundly different evolutionary histories.) This juxtaposition of important similarities and differences has significant ethical implications.
The similarities suggest that dolphins qualify for moral standing as individuals-and, therefore, are entitled to treatment of a particular sort. The differences, however, suggest that species-specific standards may apply when it comes to determining something as basic as “harm.” The policy implications are considerable. For example, certain human fishing practices are indefensible and would need to change. (Over 300,000 cetaceans are thought to die annually around the world as a result of fisheries by-catch. Thousands more typically die in the annual Japanese drive hunts.) Similarly, changes would need to be made regarding the hundreds of captive dolphins currently used in entertainment facilities. The economic, political and diplomatic challenges in ending ethically problematic practices, however, are daunting and multi-faceted. Unfortunately, humans have a poor track record for recognizing the rights and interests even of members of our own species once they’ve been dubbed “inferior.” Meaningful change in human/dolphin interaction, then, is likely to unfold slowly. Yet developing an interspecies ethic could mark a significant turning point in the relationship between humans and other intelligent beings on the planet.
- Lori Marino (Emory University): Anatomical Basis of Dolphin Intelligence – http://aaas.confex.com/aaas/2010/webprogram/Paper1487.html
- “Non-human Persons” by petchary (Petchary blog) – http://petchary.wordpress.com/2011/01/02/non-human-persons/ – dog knows more worlds (over 1000) that a two-years old.
Mammals: Carnivora (cats, dogs, …)
- “What Are Cats Thinking?” by David Grimm (Slate; 2014.04.21) – http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2014/04/cat_intelligence_and_cognition_are_cats_smarter_than_dogs.html
- Inside the mind of the world’s most uncooperative research subject.
- “Sit. Stay. Parse. Good Girl!” by Nicholas Wade (The New York times; 2011.01.17) – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/18/science/18dog.html
- Avian Intelligence (Wikipedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avian_intelligence
- “Empathic chickens and cooperative elephants: Emotional intelligence expands its range again” by Marc Bekoff (Psychology Today; 2011.03.09)- http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/animal-emotions/201103/empathic-chickens-and-cooperative-elephants-emotional-intelligence-expan – Chickens feel one another’s pain and elephants know when they need help
- “Songbirds Use Grammar in Tweets” by Clare Pain (Discovery News, from ABC Science Online; 2011.06.27) – http://news.discovery.com/animals/finches-songs-grammar-110627.html – It turns out humans aren’t so unique in being able to order sound logically.
- Playing jumbled bird songs back to finches showed that the order of syllables matters to the birds.
- Humans aren’t the only ones who structure their sounds in grammatical ways, the research suggests.
- Murmurations by flocks of starlings and other small birds: Likely not an example of intelligence, but it is a good example of complexity of collective behavior (which is half-way towards the intelligence):
- “‘Murmuration’ shows a fascinating and rare phenomena in nature” by William Goodman (CBS News; 2011.11.03) – http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504784_162-57318049-10391705/murmuration-shows-a-fascinating-and-rare-phenomena-in-nature/
- Vimeo page with orginal video recording – http://vimeo.com/31158841
- I have seen this many times, but never on scale like this, it were always small clouds/flocks of few tens of small birds. Typically I see them dancing around (evading) some predator bird that tries to catch one of them
Aves (Birds): Corvids [Corvidae]
- Corvidae (WikiPedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corvidae
- “Rook reveal remarkable tool use” – http://vodpod.com/watch/1672586-rook-reveal-remarkable-tool-use
- “Bird Tool Use Evolved for Better Grub, Literally” by Jennifer Viegas (Dicsovery News; 2010.09.16) – http://news.discovery.com/animals/bird-tool-use-evolved-for-better-grub-literally.html
- Problem solving by a clever crow (YouTube) – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EZSk7oCNaHg
- “Ravens Reconcile after Aggressive Conflicts with Valuable Partners” by Orlaith N. Fraser, Thomas Bugnyar (PLoS; 2011.03.25) – http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0018118
- Reconciliation, a post-conflict affiliative interaction between former opponents, is an important mechanism for reducing the costs of aggressive conflict in primates and some other mammals as it may repair the opponents’ relationship and reduce post-conflict distress. Opponents who share a valuable relationship are expected to be more likely to reconcile as for such partners the benefits of relationship repair should outweigh the risk of renewed aggression. In birds, however, post-conflict behavior has thus far been marked by an apparent absence of reconciliation, suggested to result either from differing avian and mammalian strategies or because birds may not share valuable relationships with partners with whom they engage in aggressive conflict. Here, we demonstrate the occurrence of reconciliation in a group of captive subadult ravens (Corvus corax) and show that it is more likely to occur after conflicts between partners who share a valuable relationship. Furthermore, former opponents were less likely to engage in renewed aggression following reconciliation, suggesting that reconciliation repairs damage caused to their relationship by the preceding conflict. Our findings suggest not only that primate-like valuable relationships exist outside the pair bond in birds, but that such partners may employ the same mechanisms in birds as in primates to ensure that the benefits afforded by their relationships are maintained even when conflicts of interest escalate into aggression. These results provide further support for a convergent evolution of social strategies in avian and mammalian species.
- “Angry Birds: Crows Never Forget Your Face” by Jennifer Viegas (Discovery News; 2011.06.28) – http://news.discovery.com/animals/angry-crows-memory-life-threatening-behavior-110628.html
- Mess with a crow, and it will remember your face for over five years, research shows.
- Crows remember the faces of “dangerous humans,” with the memories likely lasting for a bird’s lifetime.
- Crows may scold people who threaten them, bringing in relatives and even strangers to mob the person.
- The crows within mobs then indirectly learn about the person, so they too associate that individual’s face with danger and react accordingly.
- “Others have shown that some crows make and use tools, forecast future events, understand what other animals know, and — in our case — learn from individual experience as well as by observing parents and peers,” Marzluff explained. “These are all advanced cognitive tasks shown by only a few animals.”
- He suspects other social, long-lived species that live closely with humans might also share information in a similar manner. Possibilities include animals such as coyotes, raccoons, gulls, pigeons and rats. All could practice a combination of social and trial and error learning. The latter provides the most accurate information, but it is clearly riskier than indirect social learning.
- “Crows are Feathered Engineers” by Gene Charleton (Discovery News; 2010.06.10) – http://news.discovery.com/tech/feathered-engineers.html – Crows living in the jungles of New Caledonia use tools to solve problems.
- “Feathered engineers” by Gene (Texas AM Engineering; 2010.06.02) – http://engineeringworks.tamu.edu/2010/feathered-engineers/
- “Mirrors and Magpies” by fatfinch (The Fat Finch Bird Brain Blog; ) – http://fatfinch.wordpress.com/2008/08/20/mirrors-and-magpies/
- “Self-Recognition in the Pica Pica (Magpie)?” (2008.08.19) – http://cognitivetrammeling.wordpress.com/2008/08/19/self-recognition-in-the-pica-pica/
Aves (Birds): Parrots
- Parrot intelligence – http://www.budgie-parakeets.com/parrotintelligence.html
- “Parrot Proves It’s No Birdbrain” by Rachel Metz (Wired; (2005.07.20) – http://www.wired.com/medtech/health/news/2005/07/68226%3FcurrentPage%3Dall
- “Video Shows Fish Using Tools” by Jennifer Viegas (Discovery News; 2011.09.29) – http://news.discovery.com/animals/fish-uses-tool-110929.html
- “What the movie shows is very interesting,” Bernardi was quoted as saying in a press release. “The animal excavates sand to get the shell out, then swims for a long time to find an appropriate area where it can crack the shell. It requires a lot of forward thinking, because there are a number of steps involved. For a fish, it’s a pretty big deal.”
- “First Fish Photographed Using Tool To Help It Eat” by Matthew McDermott (TreeHugger; 2011.07.19) – http://www.treehugger.com/files/2011/07/first-fish-photographed-using-tool-help-it-eat.php
Cephalopod: Squids, etc
- Cephalopod intelligence (WikiPedia) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cephalopod_intelligence
- This is probably a stretch (in domain of science-fiction), but it sounds like something that just could be the case. Is decoration of your nesting ground a sign of intelligence? Also, assuming that some ancient cephalopod indeed had this intelligence, then the questions is what happened to that intelligence during the following 50 millions of years? It looks like it had gone nowhere to be seen these days.
- “The Revenge of the Imaginary Kraken” by Brian Switek (Wired; 2011.10.12) – http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/10/the-revenge-of-the-imaginary-kraken/
- “Gigantic KRAKEN fingered in prehistoric murder mystery – Prof reckons monster was also a Triassic Van Gogh” by Anna Leach (The Register; 2011.10.12) – http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/10/12/kraken_killer/
- “The proposed Triassic kraken, which could have been the most intelligent invertebrate ever, arranged the vertebral discs in biserial patterns, with individual pieces nesting in a fitted fashion as if they were part of a puzzle. The arranged vertebrae resemble the pattern of sucker discs on a cephalopod tentacle, with each amphicoelous vertebra strongly resembling a coleoid sucker. Thus the tessellated vertebral disc pavement may represent the earliest known self‑portrait.”
- “Ancient Krakens Making Self-Portraits?” (SlashDot; 2011.10.11) – http://science.slashdot.org/story/11/10/11/134240/ancient-krakens-making-self-portraits
- First time accepted submitter Sanoj writes “Strange patterns of ichthyosaur bones have been found on an ancient deep-water seabed. One paleontologist has put forward the theory that these could have been the work of giant cephalopods who were eating the swimming dinosaurs and then arranging the vertebrae to resemble their own tentacles [http://www.tgdaily.com/general-sciences-features/58953-triassic-kraken-may-have-created-self-portrait]. Sound far-fetched? Apparently, the modern octopus also does this.”
- “The Giant, Prehistoric Squid That Ate Common Sense” by Brian Switek (Wired; 2011.10.10) – http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/10/the-giant-prehistoric-squid-that-ate-common-sense/
- “Smokin’ Kraken?” by Sarah Simpson(Discovery News; 2011.10.100) – http://news.discovery.com/earth/smokin-kraken-111011.html
- “Triassic ‘Kraken’ may have created self-portrait” by Kate Taylor (TG Daily; 2011.10.10) – http://www.tgdaily.com/general-sciences-features/58953-triassic-kraken-may-have-created-self-portrait
- “TRIASSIC KRAKEN: THE BERLIN ICHTHYOSAUR DEATH ASSEMBLAGE INTERPRETED AS A GIANT CEPHALOPOD MIDDEN” by Mark A.S. MCMENAMIN and Dianna L. SCHULTE MCMENAMIN (2011 GSA Annual Meeting in Minneapolis [9–12 October 2011]; Paper No. 120-3) – http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2011AM/finalprogram/abstract_197227.htm
- The Luning Formation at Berlin‑Ichthyosaur State Park, Nevada, hosts a puzzling assemblage of at least 9 huge (≤14 m) juxtaposed ichthyosaurs (Shonisaurus popularis). Shonisaurs were cephalopod‑eating predators comparable to sperm whales (Physeter). Hypotheses presented to explain the apparent mass mortality at the site have included: tidal flat stranding, sudden burial by slope failure, and phytotoxin poisoning. Citing the wackestone matrix, J. A. Holger argued convincingly for a deeper water setting, but her phytotoxicity hypothesis cannot explain how so many came to rest at virtually the same spot. Skeletal articulation indicates that animals were deposited on the sea floor shortly after death. Currents or other factors placed them in a north‑south orientation. Adjacent skeletons display different taphonomic histories and degrees of disarticulation, ruling out catastrophic mass death, but allowing a scenario in which dead ichthyosaurs were sequentially transported to a sea floor midden. We hypothesize that the shonisaurs were killed and carried to the site by an enormous Triassic cephalopod, a “kraken,” with estimated length of approximately 30 m, twice that of the modern Colossal Squid Mesonychoteuthis. In this scenario, shonisaurs were ambushed by a Triassic kraken, drowned, and dumped on a midden like that of a modern octopus. Where vertebrae in the assemblage are disarticulated, disks are arranged in curious linear patterns with almost geometric regularity. Close fitting due to spinal ligament contraction is disproved by the juxtaposition of different-sized vertebrae from different parts of the vertebral column. The proposed Triassic kraken, which could have been the most intelligent invertebrate ever, arranged the vertebral discs in biserial patterns, with individual pieces nesting in a fitted fashion as if they were part of a puzzle. The arranged vertebrae resemble the pattern of sucker discs on a cephalopod tentacle, with each amphicoelous vertebra strongly resembling a coleoid sucker. Thus the tessellated vertebral disc pavement may represent the earliest known self‑portrait. The submarine contest between cephalopods and seagoing tetrapods has a long history. A Triassic kraken would have posed a deadly risk for shonisaurs as they dove in pursuit of their smaller cephalopod prey.
- “Octopus Is First Invertebrate to Use Tools, Turning a Coconut Into Mobile Home (Video)”
by Jaymi Heimbuch (TreeHugger; 2009.12.15) – http://www.treehugger.com/files/2009/12/octopus-is-first-invertabrate-to-use-tools-turning-a-coconut-into-mobile-home.php
Plan group intelligence
- Stefano Mancuso: The roots of plant intelligence (TED Talks; ) – http://www.ted.com/talks/stefano_mancuso_the_roots_of_plant_intelligence.html
Bacteria group intelligence
- “Twittering bacteria: on bacteria… social intelligence” by Vitorino Ramos (Chemoton blog; 2010.11.24) – http://chemoton.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/twittering-bacteria-on-bacteria-social-intelligence/
- “”Bacteria running supercomputers? How?” by adonis49 (Adonis Diaries; 2010.09.19) – http://adonis49.wordpress.com/2010/09/19/bacteria-running-supercomputers-how/
- “Bacteria ‘R’ Us” by Valerie Brown(Miller-McCune; 2010.12.02) – http://www.miller-mccune.com/science-environment/bacteria-r-us-23628/
- Emerging research shows that bacteria have powers to engineer the environment, to communicate and to affect human well-being. They may even think.
Related here: Intelligence – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/10/27/intelligence/.
- “Memetic and Information Diseases in a Knowledge Society” – http://www.laetusinpraesens.org/docs00s/knowell.php</
- “Memetic Engineering – PsyOps and Viruses for the Wetware” by Michael Wilson – http://members.cox.net/slsturgi3/MichaelWilsonMemeticEngineering.htm
- “Memetic and Information Diseases in a Knowledge Society – Speculations towards the development of cures and preventive measures” by Anthony Judge – http://subrealism.blogspot.com/2008/07/memetic-and-information-diseases-in.html
- “The Dark Side of the Placebo Effect: When Intense Belief Kills” by Alexis Madrigal (the Atlantic; 2011.09.14) – http://www.theatlantic.com/life/archive/2011/09/the-dark-side-of-the-placebo-effect-when-intense-belief-kills/245065/
- While people of all cultures experience sleep paralysis in similar ways, the specific form and intensity it takes varies from one group to the next …
They died in their sleep one by one, thousands of miles from home. Their median age was 33. All but one — 116 of the 117 — were healthy men. Immigrants from southeast Asia, you could count the time most had spent on American soil in just months. At the peak of the deaths in the early 1980s, the death rate from this mysterious problem among the Hmong ethnic group was equivalent to the top five natural causes of death for other American men in their age group.
Something was killing Hmong men in their sleep, and no one could figure out what it was. There was no obvious cause of death. None of them had been sick, physically. The men weren’t clustered all that tightly, geographically speaking. They were united by dislocation from Laos and a shared culture, but little else. Even House would have been stumped.
Doctors gave the problem a name, the kind that reeks of defeat, a dragon label on the edge of the known medical world: Sudden Unexpected Nocturnal Death Syndrome. SUNDS. It didn’t do much in terms of diagnosis or treatment, but it was easier to track the periodic conferences dedicated to understanding the problem.
- “What’s Causing ‘Mass Faintings’ at Cambodian Factories?” by Andrew Marshall (Time > World; 2011.09.20) – http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,2093516,00.html
- … In the past three months, at least 1,200 workers at seven garment and shoe factories have reported feeling dizzy, nauseated, exhausted or short of breath, and hundreds have been briefly hospitalized. No definitive explanation has yet been given for these so-called mass faintings. One baffled reporter described them as “unique to Cambodia.” (Read how companies are abandoning Chinese factories in search of cheaper options.)
Hardly. It’s been almost 50 years since girls at a boarding school in Tanganyika (now Tanzania) were struck by an illness whose symptoms — fainting, nausea and helpless laughter — soon spread to other communities. Or consider the Pokémon contagion in 1997, when 12,000 Japanese children experienced fits, nausea and shortness of breath after watching a television cartoon. Sufferers of World Trade Center syndrome, meanwhile, blamed proximity to Ground Zero for coughs and other respiratory problems long after airborne contaminants posed any health threat.
All these are examples of mass hysteria, a bizarre yet surprisingly common phenomenon that is increasingly recognized as a significant health and social problem. For centuries it has crossed cultures and religions, taking on different forms to keep pace with popular obsessions and fears. In our post-9/11 world, it thrives on the anxiety caused by terrorist attacks, nuclear radiation and environmental gloom. “At any one time there are probably hundreds of episodes happening all around the world,” says Simon Wessely, a psychology professor at the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College London. “They just don’t normally get reported.”
- “Morgellons: mystery illness or memetic hysteria?” by Paul Raven (Futurismic blog; 2011.09.05) – http://futurismic.com/2011/05/09/morgellons-mystery-illness-or-memetic-hysteria/
- “Bugs Crawling Under Your Skin? It’s All in Your Mind” by Amie Ninh (Time; 2011.05.23) – http://healthland.time.com/2011/05/23/bugs-crawling-under-your-skin-its-all-in-your-mind/?iid=WBeditorspicks
- “No Evidence of Actual Infestation in ‘Delusional Skin Infestation’” by Katherine Hobson (The Wall Street Journal; 2011.05.17) – http://blogs.wsj.com/health/2011/05/17/no-evidence-of-actual-infestation-in-delusional-skin-infestation/
- “Morgellons: A hidden epidemic or mass hysteria?” by (Guardian; 2011.05.07) – http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2011/may/07/morgellons-mysterious-illness – It’s a mysterious condition that affects tens of thousands worldwide. But what is it?
- The Morgellons Research Foundation (MRF) – http://www.morgellons.org/
- “Morgellons disease?” by Robert E Accordino, Danielle Engler, Iona H Ginsburg and John Koo (Dermatologic Therapy; 2008.03.04) – http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1529-8019.2008.00164.x/full
- ABSTRACT: Morgellons disease, a pattern of dermatologic symptoms very similar, if not identical, to those of delusions of parasitosis, was first described many centuries ago, but has recently been given much attention on the internet and in the mass media. The present authors present a history of Morgellons disease, in addition to which they discuss the potential benefit of using this diagnostic term as a means of building trust and rapport with patients to maximize treatment benefit. The present authors also suggest “meeting the patient halfway” and creating a therapeutic alliance when providing dermatologic treatment by taking their cutaneous symptoms seriously enough to provide both topical ointments as well as antipsychotic medications, which can be therapeutic in these patients.
- Delusions of Parasitosis (DOP) (Medscape) – http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1121818-overview
- Delusions of parasitosis manifest in the patient’s firm belief that he or she has pruritus due to an infestation with insects. Patients may present with clothing lint, pieces of skin, or other debris contained in plastic wrap, on adhesive tape, or in matchboxes. They typically state that these contain the parasites; however, these collections have no insects or parasites. This presentation is called the matchbox sign, or what the authors term the “Saran-wrap sign.”…
More: Memetics – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/04/13/memetics/
- “Your Gut, Your Brain, and Economics – Should Economists Considers Gut-Brain Communication?” by Daniel R. Hawes (Psychology Today; 2011.08.02) – http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/quilted-science/201108/your-gut-your-brain-and-economics
- “Gut flora: You are what your bacteria eat” by Neil Katz (CBS News; 2011.04.21) – http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504763_162-20056028-10391704.html
- “Scientist Find Gut Bacteria Divides People Into Three Types” (FOX News; 2011.04.21) – http://www.myfoxhouston.com/dpps/health/scientist-find-gut-bacteria-divides-people-into-three-types-dpgoha-20110421-fc_12862614
- “Bacteria Divide People Into 3 Types, Scientists Say” by Carl Zimmer (NYTimes; 2011.04.20) – http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/21/science/21gut.html
- Enterotype 1:
- produces more enzymes for making vitamin B7 (also known as biotin).
- high levels of bacteria called Bacteroides
- Enterotype 2:
- produces more enzymes for vitamin B1 (thiamine).
- Bacteroides were relatively rare, while the genus Prevotella was unusually common.
- Enterotype 3
- Enterotype 1:
- “Enterotypes of the human gut microbiome” (Nature; 2011.04.20?) – http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature09944.html
- Abstract: Our knowledge of species and functional composition of the human gut microbiome is rapidly increasing, but it is still based on very few cohorts and little is known about variation across the world. By combining 22 newly sequenced faecal metagenomes of individuals from four countries with previously published data sets, here we identify three robust clusters (referred to as enterotypes hereafter) that are not nation or continent specific. We also confirmed the enterotypes in two published, larger cohorts, indicating that intestinal microbiota variation is generally stratified, not continuous. This indicates further the existence of a limited number of well-balanced host–microbial symbiotic states that might respond differently to diet and drug intake. The enterotypes are mostly driven by species composition, but abundant molecular functions are not necessarily provided by abundant species, highlighting the importance of a functional analysis to understand microbial communities. Although individual host properties such as body mass index, age, or gender cannot explain the observed enterotypes, data-driven marker genes or functional modules can be identified for each of these host properties. For example, twelve genes significantly correlate with age and three functional modules with the body mass index, hinting at a diagnostic potential of microbial markers.
- “How Microbes Defend and Define Us” by Carl Zimmer (NYTimes; 2010.07.12) – http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/13/science/13micro.html
- “A human gut microbial gene catalogue established by metagenomic sequencing” (Nature; 2010.03.04) – http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v464/n7285/full/nature08821.html
- Fermi paradox (WikiPedia) – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fermi_paradox
Be quiet you stupid young species! (or else be gone)
- “Is ET avoiding us out of a fear of human galactic conquest?” (io9; 2011.04.10) – http://io9.com/#!5790567/is-et-avoiding-us-out-of-a-fear-of-human-galactic-conquest
- “Is ET Scared of Human Conquest?” (13point7 blog) – http://thirteenpointseven.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/is-et-scared-of-human-conquest/
- “Interstellar Predation Could Explain Fermi Paradox” (The Physics arXiv blog; 2011.04.08) – http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/arxiv/26622/
- In a casual chat over lunch back in 1950, the Italian-American physicist Enrico Fermi posed a now famous question. If intelligent life has evolved many times in our galaxy and beyond, why do we see no sign of it?
Kent puts it like this: “If cosmic habitats are widely enough separated that they are very hard to ﬁnd, by far the best strategy for a typical species to avoid defeat in such competitions may be to avoid entering them, by being inconspicuous enough that no potential adversary identiﬁes its habitat as valuable.”
That raises important questions about whether humanity is wise to advertise its existence. Various attempts to send messages to the stars have already been made and many scientists have pointed out that this could be a serious mistake, even a suicidal one.
- “Too Damned Quiet?” by Adrian Kent (arXiv.org > physics > arXiv:1104.0624; 2011.04.04) – http://arxiv.org/abs/1104.0624
- Abstract: It is often suggested that extraterrestial life sufficiently advanced to be capable of interstellar travel or communication must be rare, since otherwise we would have seen evidence of it by now. This in turn is sometimes taken as indirect evidence for the improbability of life evolving at all in our universe. A couple of other possibilities seem worth considering. One is that life capable of evidencing itself on interstellar scales has evolved in many places but that evolutionary selection, acting on a cosmic scale, tends to extinguish species which conspicuously advertise themselves and their habitats. The other is that — whatever the true situation — intelligent species might reasonably worry about the possible dangers of self-advertisement and hence incline towards discretion. These possibilities are discussed here, and some counter-arguments and complicating factors are also considered.
- “Study: Older people worse at multitasking” bu Elizabeth Weise (ScienceFair; 2011.04.12) – http://content.usatoday.com/communities/sciencefair/post/2011/04/study-older-people-worse-at-multitasking/1
- “Older brains less nimble at multi-tasking – study” by Steve Gorman (Reuters; 2011.04.12) – http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/04/12/uk-science-elderly-idUSLNE73B03N20110412
- “Brain finds it difficult to multitask as we get older” (Daily News and Analysis; 2011.04.12) – http://www.dnaindia.com/lifestyle/report_brain-finds-it-difficult-to-multitask-as-we-get-older_1531188
- Abstract Images – https://sites.google.com/site/mnemonistponder/home/abstract_images – 25 memorization and recall sheets.
- “Secrets of a Mind-Gamer” by Joshua Foer (The New York Times; 2011.02.15) – http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/02/20/magazine/mind-secrets.html?src=me&ref=general – How I trained my brain and became
a world-class memory athlete.
- Memorizing Numbers – http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/magazine/20110220numbers-game.pdf [PDF]
- Memorizing Names – http://graphics8.nytimes.com/packages/pdf/magazine/20110220names.pdf [PDF]
- Test Your Memory Skills (an interactive game) – http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/02/20/magazine/memory-games.html
- “Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior” by Amy Chua (Wall Street Journal; 2011.01.08) – http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704111504576059713528698754.html –
Can a regimen of no playdates, no TV, no computer games and hours of music practice create happy kids? And what happens when they fight back?
- … What Chinese parents understand is that nothing is fun until you’re good at it. To get good at anything you have to work, and children on their own never want to work, which is why it is crucial to override their preferences. …
Related: Skills acquisition – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2012/02/06/skills-acquisition/
- “Gypsies” in the United States – http://www.smithsonianeducation.org/migrations/gyp/gypstart.html
- The Gypsy Lore Society – http://www.gypsyloresociety.org/
- Gypsy Jib – http://www.gypsy-jib.com/ – a Romany/English dictionary
- The English Gypsy Language – http://www.globusz.com/ebooks/Romano/00000012.htm
- “Brain training doesn’t boost brain power, work suggests” (BBC News; 2010.04.20) – http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8630588.stm
Origins of language
- “‘Language gene’ speeds learning” by Ewen Callaway (Nature; 2011.11.18) – http://www.nature.com/news/language-gene-speeds-learning-1.9395
- Mouse study suggests that mutation to FOXP2 gene may have helped humans learn the muscle movements for speech.
- “The Mother of All Languages” by Gautam Naik (Wall Street Journal; 2011.04.15) – http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704547604576262572791243528.html
- The world’s 6,000 or so modern languages may have all descended from a single ancestral tongue spoken by early African humans between 50,000 and 70,000 years ago, a new study suggests.
- Bart de Boer – http://home.medewerker.uva.nl/b.g.deboer/ | http://uvafon.hum.uva.nl/bart/
- “Bart de Boer – 1999 – Self-Organisation in Vowel Systems” (PhD Thesis) – http://uvafon.hum.uva.nl/bart/papers/deBoerThesis.pdf | http://www.ai.rug.nl/~bart/deBoerThesis.pdf
- “Chapter 3 – Evolving Sound Systems” – http://uvafon.hum.uva.nl/bart/papers/deBoerSimEvoLang2002.pdf | http://arti.vub.ac.be/cursus/2003-2004/technAI1/Les7a.pdf
- “Self-organization in vowel systems.” Bart De Boer (2000) – http://acl.ldc.upenn.edu/W/W97/W97-1103.pdf | http://www.ai.rug.nl/~bart/Bart_JOP.pdf
- review of the book “The Origins of vowel systems: Studies in the evolution of language I” by Bart de Boer – http://www.sil.org:8090/silebr/2009/silebr2009-006
- “Computer modeling as a tool for understanding language evolution” (2006) – http://uvafon.hum.uva.nl/bart/papers/deBoerEELC2004.pdf
- “Emergence of vowel systems through self-organisation” – http://uvafon.hum.uva.nl/bart/papers/deBoerAIComm2000.pdf
- “Language Networks: their structure, function and evolution” by Ricard V. Sole, Bernat Corominas Murtra, Sergi Valverde and Luc Steels – http://www.santafe.edu/media/workingpapers/05-12-042.pdf
- “Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of Semitic languages identifies an Early Bronze Age origin of Semitic in the Near East” (Mathilda’s Anthropology Blog; 2010.05.16) – http://mathildasanthropologyblog.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/bayesian-phylogenetic-analysis-of-semitic-languages-identifies-an-early-bronze-age-origin-of-semitic-in-the-near-east/
- “Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of Semitic languages identifies an Early Bronze Age origin of Semitic in the Near East” – http://mathildasanthropologyblog.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/rspb20090408.pdf
- Our statistical tests of alternative Semitic histories support an initial divergence of Akkadian from ancestral Semitic over competing hypotheses (e.g. an African origin of Semitic). We estimate an Early Bronze Age origin for Semitic approximately 5750 years ago in the Levant, and further propose that contemporary Ethiosemitic languages of Africa reflect a single introduction of early Ethiosemitic from southern Arabia approximately 2800 years ago.
- “Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of Semitic languages identifies an Early Bronze Age origin of Semitic in the Near East” – http://mathildasanthropologyblog.files.wordpress.com/2010/05/rspb20090408.pdf
- “Proto Semitic; dating and locating it” (Mathilda’s Anthropology Blog; 2009.02.08) – http://mathildasanthropologyblog.wordpress.com/2009/02/08/proto-semitic-dating-and-locating-it/
- “Reclaiming Semitism” by Afif Tabsh – http://atabsh.wordpress.com/2010/10/10/reclaiming-semitism/
- The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary Project – http://oi.uchicago.edu/research/projects/cad/
- The Chicago Assyrian Dictionary, initiated in 1921 by James Henry Breasted, is compiling a comprehensive dictionary of the various dialects of Akkadian, the earliest known Semitic language that was recorded on cuneiform texts that date from c. 2400 B.C. to A.D. 100 which were recovered from archaeological excavations of ancient Near Eastern sites. The Assyrian Dictionary is in every sense a joint undertaking of resident and non-resident scholars from around the world who have contributed their time and labor over a period of seventy years to the collection of the source materials and to the publication of the Dictionary.
Related here: Linguistics links – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/08/07/linguistics-links/ | Learning languages / Language acquisition – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/11/12/learning-languages-language-acquisition/ | Bilingualism – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/11/12/bilingualism-multilingualism/.
- “Stigmergic Collaboration: The Evolution of Group Work” by Mark Elliott (M/C Journal; Volume 9, Issue 2, 2006.05) – http://journal.media-culture.org.au/0605/03-elliott.php
- “Definitions of stigmergy” by Eric Bonabeau (From a special issue of “Artificial Life” on stigmergy; Volume 5, Issue 2 / Spring 1999) – http://www.stigmergicsystems.com/stig_v1/stigrefs/article1.html
- Stigmergic collaboration (at Wikia) – http://collaboration.wikia.com/wiki/Stigmergic_collaboration
- Stigmergy group – http://manwithoutqualities.com/2010/11/30/stigmergy-group/
Cirque Du Soleil : Miracula Aeternitatis
- Composer: Violaine Corradi
- Album: Dralion
- Vocals: Erik Karol
- Keyboards: Sylvain Grand
- Cello solo: James Darling
- Guitars: Lionel Hamel
- Text inspired by the first verse of the “Tabula Smaragdina” (Emerald Tabled)
- at Youtube: http://youtube.com/watch?v=DGkTRCdRRVs
Quod fuit est quod erit Et quod erit est sicut quod fuit Quod fuit ad perpetranda Miracula aeternitatis Quod superius est sicut quod inferius Ad perpetranda miracula Quod fuit est quod erit Et quod erit est sicut quod fuit Quod fuit ad perpetranda Miracula aeternitatis Quod inferius est sicut quod superius Ad perpetranda miracula Quod fuit ad perpetranda Miracula aeternitatis Quod superius est sicut quod inferius Ad perpetranda miracula
|Verum, sine mendacio, certum et verissimum:||True, without error, certain and most true:|
|1. Quod est inferius est sicut quod est superius, et quod est superius est sicut quod est inferius, ad perpetranda miracula rei unius||1. That which is above is as that which is below, and that which is below is as that which is above, to perform the miracles of the one thing.|
|2. Et sicut res omnes fuerunt ab uno, meditatione unius, sic omnes res natae ab hac una re, adaptatione.||2. And as all things were from [the] one, by [means of] the meditation of [the] one, thus all things of the daughter from [the] one, by [means of] adaptation.|
|3. Pater eius est Sol. Mater eius est Luna. Portavit illud Ventus in ventre suo. Nutrix eius terra est.||3. Its father is the sun, its mother[,] the moon, the wind carried it in its belly, its nurse is the earth.|
|4. Pater omnis telesmi totius mundi est hic.||4. The father of all the looms of the whole world is here.|
|5. Virtus eius integra est si versa fuerit in terram.||5. Its power is integrating if it be turned into earth.|
|6. Separabis terram ab igne, subtile ab spisso, suaviter, magno cum ingenio.||6. Separate the earth from the fire, the fine from the dense, delicately, by [means of/to] the great [together] with capacity.|
|7. Ascendit a terra in coelum, iterumque descendit in terram, et recipit vim superiorum et inferiorum.||7. It ascends by [means of] earth into heaven and again it descends into the earth, and retakes the power of the superior[s] and of the inferior[s].|
|8. Sic habebis Gloriam totius mundi.||8. Thus[,] you have the glory of the whole world.|
|9. Ideo fugiet a te omnis obscuritas.||9. Therefore[,] may it drive-out by [means of] you of all the obscurity.|
|10. Haec est totius fortitudinis fortitudo fortis, quia vincet omnem rem subtilem, omnemque solidam penetrabit.||10. This is the whole of the strength of the strong force, because it overcomes all fine things, and penetrats all the complete.|
|11. Sic mundus creatus est.||11. Thus the world has been created.|
|12. Hinc erunt adaptationes mirabiles, quarum modus est hic.||12. Hence they were wonderful adaptations, of which this is the manner.|
|Itaque vocatus sum Hermes Trismegistus, habens tres partes philosophiae totius mundi. Completum est quod dixi de operatione Solis.||Therefore I am Hermes the Thrice Great, having the three parts of the philosophy of the whole world. What I have said concerning the operation of the Sun has been completed.|
- Rendering by: Chrysogonus Polydorus, Nuremberg 1541
- Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emerald_Tablet