Big brain evolution: learning new tasks (Evolution)

by dhw, Saturday, April 28, 2018, 11:17 (230 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: You keep agreeing that the software/hardware analogy fits, but you refuse to recognize that only a complex expanded capacity computer can do complex expanded capacity solutions/concepts.
dhw: What do you mean by “do”? Only a complex expanded capacity computer brain can implement the new complex concepts that are provided by the software s/s/c. If your computer is working perfectly well with the software you already have, you don’t get a new one. I suggest that the pre-sapiens brain (computer) could not implement the new concepts provided by the s/s/c (software), and so it required additional cells and connections (a computer with a larger capacity).
DAVID: A bigger brain requires a bigger skull and a different Mother's pelvic shape, all coordinated at once. Requires design across two sexes. Not by chance.

Where have I said it was by chance? The issue between us is whether the pre-sapiens brain expanded before he had his new thoughts, or as a result of his having new thoughts. I have used your own computer analogy to explain the illogicality of your argument, and so you scuttle off to the chance issue. I presume you now accept my argument but are reluctant to say so.

DAVID: Once again, you are discussing what we know about the sapiens brain, and forgetting that evolution builds on what was accomplished in the past iterations of progressive species. We do not know that the erectus brain did not have the same plasticity, but perhaps not to the same degree. Recognize that erectus may well have had brain plasticity. It fits what we know.

dhw: Another of your straw men. I have never suggested that erectus did not have brain plasticity – how else could it have expanded? No doubt it complexified too, until the s/s/c came up with concepts that required a great capacity. You insist that your God provided the greater capacity before it was needed. I propose that the need led to the increased capacity.
DAVID: And your 'need' might have created whales and all the other strange and wonderful creatures in the bush of life. The brain of humans was never needed for survival; the Darwin view of evolution doesn't fit.

Another scuttle to a different path. No multicellular organisms were needed for survival, since single-celled organisms have survived. We are not talking about Darwin. We are talking about the complexification and expansion of the brain, in which I propose that the hardware brain needs to complexify/expand in order to implement new software ideas.

DAVID’s comment (relating to a memory experiment with mice): The study shows how the brain responds to work of the s/s/c in memory formation. When we remember something, we must be able to find where it is stored in the brain. This shows the interdependence of brain and s/s/c.

Yet more evidence that the brain responds to the work of the s/s/c, i.e. changes take place in response to thoughts and not in anticipation of them. And yes indeed, the two are interdependent.

DAVID’s comment (under “Neanderthal brain difference”): This study certainly shows a species can only think with the brain it is given, and more complexity gives more complex concepts.

Yes, it takes the materialist view for granted: that the material brain is the source of concepts. You have once again forgotten that you are a dualist.


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