Natures wonders: insect migration (Introduction)

by dhw, Tuesday, November 23, 2021, 13:09 (4 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: What you do no appreciate is the imbedded program causes the brain cells to change on command.

dhw: Are you saying that the new adults don’t learn anything? Perhaps you could tell us precisely what this “imbedded program” consists of, and how it puts all the individual distances and directions and movements into the bee’s brain so that the bee doesn’t have to do any learning or thinking of its own.

DAVID: The DNA of the bee's neurons contains the program's algorithm, as the author of the article proposes. Specifically, this is not equivalent of adults learning new functions or facts. It does resemble the way children pick up language quickly, although not exactly the same time frame. as you noted.

That doesn’t tell me what your “imbedded program” programmes. Children cannot possibly learn language without using their intelligence to understand new functions and facts! And calculating directions and distances and communicating information about them to others would hardly be possible without learning about facts and functions! You have highlighted a similar learning procedure in the article on children and humour (progressively acting like animals, playing with concepts, making fun of others, playing with social rules). The bees follow the same course of learning, but with a vastly more limited repertoire of facts and functions and over a vastly shorter period of time.

dhw: So please explain why you think human learning denotes autonomous intelligence but bee learning denotes automaticity.

DAVID: The tiny algorithm, the term used by the author, automatically controls the changes in brain neurons.

dhw: That simply means that when the bee or the human learns something new, the brain changes. It does not mean that humans have an autonomous intelligence that enables them to learn, whereas bees can only follow God’s instructions. Once more, what does your God’s programme consist of?

DAVID: See above.

You have not told us what this so-called programme consists of. Let me make a suggestion: bees, like human children and adults, are born with a mechanism that enables them to learn facts and functions. This mechanism (possibly designed by your God) is such that when something new is learned, the brain undergoes changes. The nature of the mechanism is unknown, but it is the same for all: a form of intelligence which enables the cells of the organism to make perceptions (i.e. learn facts), process information, communicate it to others, and make decisions (i.e. perform functions). What you call the “imbedded program” is the ABILITY to learn etc. If you disagree, then once more please tell us what your 3.8-billion-year-old (or more recently dabbled) “imbedded program” consists of.


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