Big brain evolution: changes in sapiens skull shape (Evolution)

by dhw, Tuesday, January 30, 2018, 12:30 (996 days ago) @ David Turell

dhw: [...] the s/s/c does not USE the brain to think. The s/s/c (software) does the thinking, and it uses the brain (computer) to give material form or expression to its thoughts/concepts (or “put them into practice”). And that is why it is topsy-turvy for you to claim that the pre-sapiens s/s/c could not think of its new concepts until the brain had already expanded.

DAVID: What is not topsy-turvy is advanced thought requires a more complex cortex, as I've explained and you will not accept in the computer analogy and shown by level of artifact complexity. Otherwise we agree.

According to you as a dualist, the cortex does not do the thinking. That is done by the soul. Advanced thought requires a more complex brain for its IMPLEMENTATION, just as the software does the thinking and the computer does the implementing. More complex artefacts may be implemented by the process of the brain complexifying, but in the case of pre-sapiens, when the capacity for complexification had reached its limit, more cells and connections were needed to implement the concept, and so the process of implementation resulted in expansion. The implement could not appear until this process was complete. (My bold)

DAVID: New uses add to existing complexity. And ALSO adds some neurons and many new connections while some become redundant. And the brain size shrinks!

You keep dodging from pre-sapiens to sapiens. The adding of neurons and new connections would have been the cause for pre-sapiens expansion when the brain’s capacity for complexification had reached its limit. Sapiens could not expand any more, and so complexification took over completely and was so efficient that some neurons and connections became redundant. (My bold)

DAVID: S/s/c software uses brain as a computer. Implementation is the brain learning to handle a new process, throwing, reading, etc., by a few new neurons and lots of connective branching.

dhw: Precisely. When the pre-sapiens brain had exhausted its capacity for complexification, it implemented the soul’s new concepts (knapping flint, binding stone to shaft, throwing etc.) by adding NEW neurons and connections, and the addition of NEW cells led to expansion. You’ve got it!

DAVID: You've misgotten it! Complexification shrinks the brain, is the only evidence we have!

Again you are dodging from pre-sapiens to sapiens. We know that pre-sapiens brain expanded! That means it added new cells and connections, precisely as explained above!

dhw: After one or two million years of comparative zilch, genius erectus conceived some sort of improvement (we don’t know what) which required NEW neurons and connections, as a result of which the brain expanded to sapiens size.

DAVID: Don't ignore artifactual evidence. Erectus didn't think of much because they couldn't.
No doubt the same applies to sapiens for 270,000 years. It takes clever individuals to think up new concepts.

dhw: Sapiens also survived perfectly well for a mere 270,000 years, but then some genius came up with new ideas for improvement. The rest, as they say, is history – improvement builds on improvement. Sapiens brain couldn’t expand any more, so implementing any more new ideas now led only to further complexification of the brain (so efficiently that the brain has shrunk). A logical chain of cause and effect, and if your God exists, he set it all in motion by endowing cells/cell communities – including hominids, hominins and sapiens – with their autonomous intelligence. Now tell me what part of the history is not explained by this hypothesis.

DAVID: Your fairy tale of cell committees having so much autonomous intellgence, which is only seen at the single cell level, and is most probably automaticity of molecular actions.

You are saying why you don’t believe my hypothesis, but I asked what part of evolutionary history is not explained by it. Your hypothesis that God personally preprogrammed or dabbled every single innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder attempts to explain the history of evolution, though there is not a single shred of evidence for it. My unproven hypothesis is that cellular intelligence (perhaps God-given) explains every innovation, lifestyle and natural wonder and hence the history of evolution, and it answers all the questions your own anthropocentric hypothesis fails to answer.

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