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

by David Turell @, Monday, March 23, 2020, 19:52 (183 days ago) @ dhw

dhw: You continue to ignore the distinction between concept and design. I can do no more than repeat what I wrote yesterday in bold:

"Which new complex abstract thought – the concept, or the design of the concept? Once more: in your dualistic world, the soul uses the brain to gather information and to implement its concepts. The concept in our example is to kill prey by throwing a sharp artefact from a distance. This is an abstract thought arising solely from the information that already exists. Once the dualist’s soul has conceived the concept, it uses the brain to design and manufacture the artefact.

We both agree design first and then implement after. Design is immaterial concept taken from knowledge of what is needed. Once the concept of the design is understood, the implementation is blue-collar work, not difficult


DAVID: The current brain at any stage of evolution always sees the information available. Conceiving of a new concept requires abstract thought in the design process.

dhw: Precisely. The new concept arises out of the information available. Then the implementation of the concept through design and manufacture makes new demands on the brain, which in former times resulted in expansion.

DAVID: Why do you think implementation is so difficult?

dhw: You keep saying that design is the difficult bit, and then you totally ignore my repeated definition of implementation as design and manufacture!

Based on my own experiences, as described, implementation is easy.


dhw Why do you insist that your God had to expand the brain before the hunter could extrapolate his concept from existing information?

DAVID: Because every enlarged brained fossil species has new artifacts found with it. Logically, they thought of it and created it.

dhw: And I keep emphasizing that it is the first artefacts which will have demanded the expansion of the brain, and only when the brain had expanded could the artefact have become real. All subsequent artefacts would have been conceived, designed and manufactured using the same sized sized brain, until the next time a concept demanded greater capacity.

And it is logical to assume the newly existing fossils made the newly existing artifacts and as shown previously still use the old artifacts from previous forms. Larger brain always needed first.


DAVID: We can only study how our brain works. We are all stuck with the fact that larger brained fossil designed and made the new artifacts, as above. You theory reverses the simple logical conclusion.

dhw: Yes, our only evidence is the way the modern brain works: and it complexifies or partially expands as a result of new tasks, not in anticipation of them. Why should this have been different in the past? And yet again you have ignored the concept and jumped straight to the design, which is why I keep asking what new information was required before my homo thought to himself: “Maybe me throw something sharp.” Please stop evading the question.

I have evaded nothing. See above. The early homo must realize, as Chimps do now that throwing stones works to damage at a distance. Throwing a wooden staff will do the same, but a napped sharp stone on the end of the staff will do the most damage. Early homos had sharped stones for scraping hides before the spear. The concept requires abstract thought to combine the two. The rest, the implementation is not difficult once the design idea is present. The bow and arrow is a bit more difficult, because trial and error will make them realize a feathered arrow tail is needed for accuracy. With the full concept of arrow finally conceived, the rest is easy to make. Design is always conceptual and immaterial. Making the design is manual work.


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