Introducing the brain: half a brain is just fine (Introduction)

by David Turell @, Saturday, March 07, 2020, 22:43 (201 days ago) @ dhw

DAVID: As for ancient brains, yes they operated in similar ways, perhaps less complex ways, but this means any new uses made tiny enlargements in those brains just like our brain does.

dhw: Nobody knows why earlier brains expanded. From the known fact that the modern brain makes “tiny enlargements”, I have extrapolated the theory that in former times the brain was able to make large enlargements. Please tell us any known facts that make this impossible.

Nothing makes that daydream impossible. It is an extrapolation as you state, but that tiny known enlargement from learning is to learn something already known. What you add is the struggle to develop a new concept makes a brain jump 200 cc in size. The only enlargement we know relates to learning, nothing more. Your extrapolation is really mixing apples and bagels.

DAVID: How our brain works is inherited from the past with new modifications, simple evolution. Nothing is consistent in your illogical theory. Tiny enlargements cannot be extrapolated to 200 cc gaps! The gaps are totally unexplained. I have God to point to. You use natural changes that somehow appear. You see the need for design, but won't accept a designing mind. So we differ.

dhw: Again: what knowledge do you have to support your contention that the brain functioned differently in the past from the way it functions in the present (complexifying and enlarging)? I use “cellular intelligence” (possibly designed by God), not “somehow” to explain the gaps. I would say it is more logical to assume continuity than a complete break that requires your God to step in every time he wants to design a new form of homo as he dabbles his way towards the only homo he actually wants to design.

If God is doing his job there is full continuity. God doesn't jump in and out discontinuously.. Your thinking about God continues to be inconsistent as each problem about God is presented.

DAVID: This article shows the mind-set of Archaeologists: the fossils that are found with the artifacts created the artifacts, but newer species still used older species artifacts, which obviously were carried over by the newer species. Erectus knew what habilis created and used. I see no support for your evolution of brain size theory.
DAVID: Archaeologists and paleontologists both equate tools and fossils to showing what the fossils created. Habilis did not tell Erectus what to do.”

dhw: Why are you surprised that thinking beings use the knowledge and inventions of their predecessors? Then of course they went on to create their own implements. But this has nothing to do with the causes of brain expansion! What’s your argument? Erectus used habilis’s tools, and this proves that God expanded erectus’s brain before he used the tools and invented his own? The archaeologists are dealing with a totally different subject!

DAVID: No, God enlarged the brain to the Erectus stage and erectus of course invented his own new artifacts. Of course the artifacts discussion has a direct relation to brain enlargement. Your theory is falling apart with this new set of papers showing how archaeologists in interpret their physical findings. Of course they are not discussing brain enlargements causes, but we must use their findings to think logically. I find your theory as weaker and weaker.

dhw: Apart from your extraordinary knowledge of what God did (first sentence), you have not provided a single argument against my proposal! Once more: What the archaeologists have found does not and cannot tell us whether the first artefacts were conceived before or after the expansion of the pre-erectus brain.(Only the first are relevant, because obviously later artefacts were conceived and created after expansion….until eventually that brain couldn’t cope any more, and new concepts required another expansion….on and on till we reach H. sapiens.) Bearing this in mind, please pinpoint anything in the article or in your own “knowledge” that makes my theory illogical or “weaker and weaker”.

All the articles I've read from Archaeology give the impression they think the larger brained fossil made the new artifacts they find with the fossils. They do not explain the jump in brain size. it is only your nebulous concept the habilis conjured up a new design tool or weapon and blew up the size of his brain so Erectus would appear and could finally make it. That is exactly how your theory translates, totally strange.

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