1. We have added a Gift Upgrades feature that allows you to gift an account upgrade to another member, just in time for the holiday season. You can see the gift option when going to the Account Upgrades screen, or on any user profile screen.
    Dismiss Notice

Political Philosophy discussion

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Caveman 2 Cosmos' started by pepper2000, Oct 26, 2018.

  1. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    So fatal flaws in various systems and beings will be impossible after certain point?
    I find it improbable, that every action and move will be perfectly calculated, so it can be executed without any bad consequences.
    Also we could notice such destruction here or there.

    In caveman2cosmos military and war still are a thing in Galactic and later era (well there are some military units/buildings/techs).
    Read description of future civics especially military branch.
    There are clearly evil buildings like time abyss or roko basilisk too.

    So in Pepper's vision of future we are most advanced aliens.
    Also we can spread destruction, if we wanted to till end of game.

    In your vision of future you can't do misdeeds, and perfect security prevents accidents too.
    Or at least no one can leave home system without 50 years long training.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2019
  2. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Would we know it when we saw it? Would we know how to differentiate the scars of it from something natural? The actions of governments may be potentially aggressive, sure, but they only get better and better at managing their people in an advanced technological environment.

    Sure. And I'm sure that war has taken place in the stars as well, but again, could we be so sure we'd know it when we saw it? Some say the Fertile Crescent on Earth is no longer Fertile for a reason and the story of Sodom and Gomorrah in the Bible as well as numerous tales in the Vedic texts suggest that things weren't always peaceful for the ETs here. We see a Mars that may well be a fairly blasted landscape. In fact, there's an asteroid belt that might have once been a planet.

    Surely peace is not assured, but RANDOM acts can be dramatically diminished. Interstellar governments would need to be very well held together. Even in our own tech tree we show a place where mind control becomes possible and in the modern day we are inventing ways to monitor individual behaviors on an extremely intrusive level AND we're beginning to think of such surveillance as normal and perhaps a good idea for the benefit of society overall. Just extrapolate out our own development a little. It's not hard to see how random acts of violence may become extremely rare, and even if they happen now and then, what kind of statement would an alien be making to attack our insignificant little world at great peril from their own overlords?
     
  3. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    So mind control and once you become cosmic era civilization time travel (if its like in caveman2cosmos) is answer for peace in skies.
    That is cosmic war crimes can be solved by time travel (like loading earlier save).
    Our planet is as insignificant for Galactic era civilization, as that civilization is insignificant for extragalactic (Cosmic era) civilization.
    Also there are kinda evil buildings I mentioned in previous post.

    Also there has to be sort of prime directive.
    When observing up close pretend to be their classified cutting edge military tech or natural phenomena.

    Also what if they are future us?
    There is "theory" like that - this is what can happen if time travel is possible.
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2019
  4. tmv

    tmv Emperor

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2015
    Messages:
    1,255
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Germany
    Even if aliens are not "evil" towards each other, they could still be fiercely tribal - on a planetary scale. Tribalism may have started in prehistory (according to the C2C timeline), but it certainly hasn't ended today. It might not end even in the far future, especially if the only reason for uniting a planet is the presence of "others". That can work very well to overcome national differences, but in the end it only means tribalism goes a step up.
     
    raxo2222 likes this.
  5. Esfera

    Esfera Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    54
    I don't think so. Tribalism is one of the core features of primitive barbarian societies.
    Ancient civilizations such as Babylon, China and India were extremely tolerant and non-tribalistic, becoming even more apathic and stoic as their population increased.
    The point of tribalism is helping those similar who are similar to you surviving and hurting those you are not similar to you.
    In a post-biological society with genetic engineering (and all the existencial questions it brings) in which an individual can potentially have unlimited descendence across the infinite subjetive time, what is even the point of even reproducing at all?
    If the only point of our conciousness, as many philosophical materialists claim, is to help us survive, why is it that we are not constantly diddling each other like rabbits and investing all our resources, time and energy towards reproduction? Why is it that psychoanalysis (sexual reductionism) and social darwinism (biological reductionism) are wrong? Then, how it comes that there are people who are voluntarily celibate and altruistic?
    One may argue that altruism and celibacy are a way our species reduces growth to avoid increasing overpopulation (like Sam Harris and Richard Dawkins did to justify homosexuality as evolutionary convenient), but that argument is not convicing and doesn't hold water, if we follow our current understanding of animal sociology overpopulated societies tend towards chaos, violence, hypersexual fetishism and anti-social behaviour (source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_sink) not towards virtue, celebacy, apathy, spiritualism, wisdom, tolerance and religion (as ancient China, ancient India and Babylon did once their population started increasing rapidly).

    Even if we ignore the fact that advanced civilizations may be hive minds as it is the most advanced form of conciousness, why there is a need for mind control? Why there is a need of justice at all?
    If just one individual from a civilization that advanced can easily destroy us during a sadistic meltdown, don't you think that civilization may be able to easily restore what that individual destroyed or harmed while 'going postal' without us even noticing?

    What is 'us' at that point?
    What you are talking here is not futurism, it is philosophy of identity.
    If we assume a reductive materialistic mindset, you are dying at every instant. All the matter in your being is constantly changing, with nothing to connect it all other than your neurons, a delusion of cause-effect and a delusion of identity. So there is a Raxo for every Plank Time that there is and the Raxo I am replying right now is already dead, the Raxo that is reading this right now is a new Raxo.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Teletransportation_paradox
     
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2019
  6. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Maybe not control, just massive monitoring. If you were to have a thought that makes you a threat to yourself and others and it can be detected, it's not exactly mind control to send a response to that, but it's certainly just as difficult to keep from being well conditioned, just as we all are conditioned to maintain society's rules to varying degrees as it is. We're seriously not far from such a future now given what we've unlocked in this information age we're in and the technologies being applied. Soon, we'll have geneologies and genetics mapped out to the point that the gene that makes a person likely to be violent will be identified, and once identified, it's not much to convince people we all need to eliminate it from the gene pool if we have the gene therapy methods to do it.

    Is that mind control? I think it's even stronger because it lets us believe we're still free, just free AND safe.

    I don't think so. You can certainly create another timeline but you cannot change the events that took place in a given timeline. There are infinite timelines extending from every moment and we are adrift on a river of likelihoods. Whatever our world experiences, it cannot un-experience. Only things can be changed for the traveller.

    I'm not familiar with them yet so can't comment. Obviously, evil is a possible destination for evolution too... but it's got a natural tendency to undo itself, thus civs that embrace great evil should eventually self-destruct. This is part of the protection that more advanced societies can rely on for hope for a future no matter how dark things may get.

    Probably to some extent. I do think Earth is a piece of real estate and if we think we're the owners, we're sorely mistaken, just the placeholders and managers where most of us are blind to the reality of things beyond our planet. The owners don't need the planet to inhabit apparently, but we're sure handy for helping them get the resources from it.

    From what the UFO researchers are saying, it's possible that there's a few species we're encountering. One, the race that owns the joint, has allowed another the ability to take a few of us here and there for research purposes. However, we aren't getting all that many current abduction tales surfacing, which sorta confirms what I heard back in the late 90s that they said it's now hands off because we are starting to become too openly aware of the phenomenon. Possibly also due to some disagreements with that species or something.

    We're currently working on invisibility technology. This is not a secret. That it may be that we're trying to capture the capabilities we've witnessed in alien ships or that we're trying to back-engineer what we are studying from the ship(s) we have may also be a part of the reason for that. They're usually not all that visible to the naked eye and it's hard to say why sometimes they are seen, perhaps on purpose to test our reactions. It really is hard to explain away every one of those witnesses but for some it's easy because anyone who feels information is challenging their worldview is going to be quick to discard it... we guard our paradigms tightly.

    I've often wondered if some of these factions actually ARE our descendants. Many ancient temples actually appear to be constructed so as to be great time stamps. We know how old they are almost to the year because, worldwide, so many are arranged with a way to show exactly what year it is on the day of the sunrise of the spring equinox... this is how we date them ourselves and they were all made to be as durable as any constructions on the planet. I think there may be a reason that so many ancient sites are made to align to the stars and give incredible insights to anyone who visits the site with just a little knowledge about how the 'clock' works. The 'Greys' that are often depicted certainly look like they could be a future human, atrophied so far with huge heads as we evolved further and further away from the need for physical might as we replace its necessity with increasing intelligence and other tools that the mind can provide. We'd certainly be intrigued to study our own past and do so with no compunctions since we are their ancestors.

    Just as likely too, however, is that we are one branch of the larger humanity that may exist throughout the Galaxy, as many channels have claimed.
     
  7. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    I meant our descendants, that are travelling to past (biological, biotechnological (all sort of transhumans), or our sapient/sentient robots).
    There are multiple time travel related techs in game.

    This way you can have aliens in mostly alienless universe (like one per galaxy occurring naturally).
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019
  8. tmv

    tmv Emperor

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2015
    Messages:
    1,255
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Germany
    You mean like our current ones? :)

    That's a bit of a non sequitur. What has reproduction to do with tribalism?

    Besides, once we come across a really alien species with virtues that are totally incomprehensible to us, we might start preferring the presence of those we can understand. Cultures can be related, too. And compared to the possible "phase space" of values, the cultures of planet Earth are almost identical.
     
  9. Esfera

    Esfera Chieftain

    Joined:
    May 28, 2018
    Messages:
    54
    Fair point. I will give you that, people seem to be turning more and more close-minded.
    Strict unchanging ingroup-outgroup social dynamics can help the survival of an individual and his/her family, and thus, that makes the genes of that ingroup in question more prevalent.
    Tribalism used to be biologically convenient, however, nowadays, it is not only useless but harmful.

    While I think that biology and neurology don't fully determine our conciousness (because I am not a materialist) I have no doubt that it has certain effect (this is called 'Compatibilism' in the 'Free Will vs Determinism' debate), certain neurotransmitters and hormones can have a significative effect in our mindset, and natural selection will tend to favour those who help the ingroup, thus, tribalism exists and since our societies are way more prosperous and more forgiving than they used to be in 200000 B.C. there is almost no darwinian incentive to get rid of tribalism, this is known as 'dysgenics', as natural selection relax its intensity, negative traits are more likely to get passed on into the next generation.
    Not that it annoys me too much or that I think that we should remove such traits, it's ok, nobody is perfect, and that is part of what makes us humans.

    Well, as soon as they live in the same universe as us (or an universe with similar constants and laws) and are carbon-based lifeforms that evolved through trial-and-error until they reached conciousness thanks to the effects of an agricultural revolution (just like us) probably the differences aren't that big.
    However, at the end of the day, who knows? This is way above our league and I am just yet another human being living in the meat-space. Theorizing about concepts as abstract as xeno-theology, alien warfare and xeno-sociology is not very 'useful' in the great scheeme of things, it's still fun though.

    That is intriguing.
    Certain scientists argue that we may be living in a simulation created by our 'ancestors'/descendants.
    Some quantum computer scientists, such as David Deutsch argue that it is possible to replicate our universe inside our universe several times thanks to algorithmic data compression (thus, Deutsch's defense of the Omega Point theory).
    This has an interesting implication: if that statement is accurate, chances are we are already living inside a simulation created by other conscious beings.
    That statement, to a certain extent, seems to be supported by our current advances in computing and data storage, things like storing 340 terabytes for billions of years inside a small bunch of cheap crystals (just like the Kryptonians from Superman) used to seem impossible, however, it is now perfectly possible: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/5D_optical_data_storage
    Other methods, such as DNA-based computing, also seem promising with certain sucess in labs: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DNA_digital_data_storage
    While 5D Optical data storage is rigid and permanent, DNA-based data storage is quite dynamic.
     
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2019
  10. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    Reactivating thread, where science goes to die.

    There is no intelligent design.

    You don't fill holes in our current understanding of evolution (and other stuff) with gods or other higher beings.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligent_design#God_of_the_gaps
     
  11. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    God of the gaps has nothing to do with it. All I'm stating is that there does appear to be an underlying goal to evolutionary pathways to higher purposes that mere chaos theory cannot account for. I'm not talking about gods or higher beings, but perhaps a species itself actually has a mind of a sort. In every system, we find small things adding up to big things. Our own brain is a mass of many cells. Within each of those cells is a mass of many atoms. Within each of those atoms is a mass of many subatomic particles. All of these things come together to make functioning systems they cannot individually begin to understand their own role in the bigger picture. Why would we think a species doesn't do the same thing as a group, or a world full of life doesn't have a unified mind that all of our interactions just pass information along from one being to the next for, just as information passes from one neuron to the next in a human brain. We shouldn't assume that we would understand this greater unified being any more than we would expect a neuron to understand the larger thoughts of the brain for which it passes information along for. If all we can see beneath our 'level' is a hint, we should consider ourselves likely to be part of a larger, far more complex, system of thought and intelligence as well. There are numerous hints when you look at evolution that suggest this is, in fact, very true. That's not a 'gap' for which to fill in a God, but a direct evidence of a larger body of which we are each just a part, something more than just our governments and civilizations.
     
  12. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    Evolution doesn't have any goal.
    Species just try to adapt to local conditions.
    It just happened, that increasing intelligence was run-away thing.

    Probably there are tons of planets without intelligent life on them.
     
  13. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    That is your theory and I don't believe it's well supported by the evidence, being the many observations of the evolutionary record, that we have.

    As for there being tons of planets without life, yes, of course there would be, thus life has a lot of ground yet to capture.
     
  14. raxo2222

    raxo2222 Time Traveller

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2011
    Messages:
    6,621
    Location:
    Poland
    Well Intelligent Design is pseudoscience - it is completely supported.

    Complexity is just side effect.
     
  15. Yudishtira

    Yudishtira Spiritual/Creative

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2012
    Messages:
    2,534
    Location:
    Brisbane
    That's not a scientific statement either, is it? Very few individual steps within evolution are understood or explained. Let alone the big picture or the 'stranger than fiction' extremes (eg. sentience). A mechanism was discovered, and it clearly operates, but the step from there to 'it explains everything' remains a leap of faith (ie. pseudoscience as you call it) rather than having been fleshed out scientifically.

    There is so much that science still doesn't know (and embarrasses itself speculating about), that various versions of intelligent design, and even theism, are hypotheses as valid as any other.
     
    Thunderbrd likes this.
  16. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    Which is exactly why I insist on stating that the modern scientific world view that despiritualizes reality is just as much a faith based choice to buy into as any other religion. I'm not saying it's wrong to despiritualize your world view, and I'm not even suggesting a spiritualized view here to speculate that a greater intelligence guides evolution, but I AM saying that such an outlook is no more logical than any other view and crosses its own gaps where it lacks the rock solid evidence with its own assumptions. And at times its assumptions counter apparent observable phenomena to maintain its internal consistency as well.
     
  17. Blazenclaw

    Blazenclaw Chieftain

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    Messages:
    99
    Some thoughts, and some moving some postings from other threads to where more relevant.

    1. "Science" is not a monolithic entity, so I can assume here that you're referring to the Theory of Evolution specifically; could you elaborate on what flaws it has (or what specifically it 'embarrasses itself speculating about') that makes it seem a poor theory?
    2. Open question: In order for something to be a hypothesis and thus valid in the eyes of the scientific method, it must be falsifiable. How could intelligent design be shown false?
      • Consider: Evolution as a reason for human intelligence could be shown false (among other ways) by any other proven example of significant change occurring in a single step beyond that given by random mutation. As an admittedly extreme example, if tomorrow a bear was born with vocal chords capable of mimicking human speech and brain that develops to learn how to speak a human language without gradual changes occurring on an individual level, my trust in the evolutionary process (among other things) would be sorely shaken. This does devolve into somewhat of a statistical argument on what constitutes significant change, but I can speak with certainty that nobody on these forums can speak with certainty on what changes fall under what standard deviation (comment relevant for later).
      • Additionally: the lack of ability to find intermediary steps for every single evolutionary path is not proof that evolution does not work; the proof that there were no intermediary steps for any given path would be (but alas, due to the the historical timescales upon which evolution acts, this disproof likely will never be shown one way or another, unless it does occur in the future as the above example).
    "the likelihood of X seems unlikely to EVER happen" is not well defined.
    1. Consider: If we assign any probability to "flight" (which, by the way isn't well defined either. Do you mean to include insects? Bats? Sugar gliders? Dandelion seeds?) then over a sufficient timescale, it will eventually become likely. Thus it very much does depend on 'how many trillions of mutations and selections'.
      • Without a serious understanding of the probabilities far beyond what humans are capable of determining, I do not believe it possible for someone to say what is or is not likely when dealing with, effectively, two infinites: the incredibly low probability of a beneficial mutation, vs the number (time-included) of mutations and probability of propagation via selection.
        • Edit: Boundary cases are clear; we can agree it is unlikely for a bear to speak, etc, likely/within reason for the pattern on a moth's wings to change over many generations and years as the industrial revolution puts more soot into the air. But in the middle ground, or big changes and big years? It's a subjective guess, which could be improved with a PhD studying evolutionary biology... which none of us have, and would still be a guess. But a more informed one, and those that have spent the years of their life examining this, do agree to a high degree on the validity of Evolution; hence the naming of it to a theory, rather than a simple hypothesis.
    2. The probability of a specific event to occur is not the same as the probability of a class of events to occur. Consider 'a method to generate sustained lift in excess of an entity's weight under entirely under the entity's own internal power' as one possibility that requires many steps to get there. This could be defined as one 'design', say, for somewhat arbitrary reasons. Eyesight could be considered another design, for similarly arbitrary reasons. So, question: What designs are there that we don't have examples of? Some random ideas: 'reproduction of an entity using silicon as the primary component' (silicon life), 'a method of material and surrounding detection based on dissipation rates of electric charges' (constructing a view of the surroundings using static charge/discharge rather than emw sensitivity), etc etc.
      • There is some probability of flight, sight, etc specifically, that get developed. There is a far, far, far larger probability that some subset of what some call 'designs' do appear naturally from the near infinite possible set of 'designs'.
    A lot to break down here.
    1. The analogy of jumping 1m 100 times is quite flawed; evolution does proceed based on intermediate steps, that's the entire point. To use your analogy, it is entirely possible to climb a 100m mountain in 100 jumps if each jump carries you a meter higher (and damn, would you have thunder thighs by the end of that!)
    2. I admit I can't quite follow what you're attempting to claim here. Are you saying that there aren't a variety of species and classifications of fish, etc? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chordate#Diagram
      • If you're saying there's more evidence of mammal/bird history, yes, we have more evidence because among other reasons fossil records are better preserved for land animals than aquatic ones. Again however, the failure case for an evolutionary hypothesis as you suggest is not the lack of evidence in some cases; it's the proof that no evidence exists for a case. An overall lack of evidence would make for a poor hypothesis, but historic records we do have (fossil and vestigial and biological) all do seem to support an iterating tree.
    3. This is conflating ecology with evolution, and is not an argument against evolution so much as... not understanding how an ecology or statistics work?
      • It is tempting to simplify things, put them in boxes, for instance; "IF reptiles were THAT MUCH "more evolved" than fishes - we would have crocs and snakes having eaten up ALL fishes and frogs "millions of years ago"." , but reality does not compress into a single form of 'more evolved' vs 'less evolved' wherein one is strictly better than the other. Species can exist in a stable system with little evolutionary pressure - alligators are the classic example - or in a system with higher pressure, such as sparrows around highways, illustrating the type of small change evolution provides in high pressure environs : https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982213001942.
    Bottom line: Reality is complex, and we're all waffling around trying to simplify things to varying degrees so that we can understand it :crazyeye:
     
  18. Somebody613

    Somebody613 Warlord

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2019
    Messages:
    222
    Gender:
    Male
    1. No, it's not.
    "Jumping" refers to generations in this context.
    In other words, jumping up 100 times in a row means having a LINEAGE of 100 generations directly descending from one another.
    And in the context of mutations, it means that those ALWAYS ACCUMULATE (when discussing cases like "running to flying" and similar quantum leaps).
    But statistically speaking, this is almost certainly FALSE - and for two separate reasons:
    a. There is zero necessity for EACH generation to be capable of producing healthy and viable progeny that would survive to reproduce.
    And if even ONE generation fails it - you'd "FALL" back down to step zero, since all of the latter generation's mutations would simply DIE CHILDLESS (progeny-less).
    Not impossible - and actually quite common.
    This typically gets "countered" with "there are always enough specimens to produce a new generation", which is a false statement that implies ACCUMULATIVE mutations once again - whereas RANDOM mutations can easily simply "fall off" just as well (or mutate in "wrong directions").
    If we actually observed such a process taking place, none of it would be as "accumulative" as this approach suggests, I betcha.
    b. In quite a few "extreme" cases, "mid-jump" species are simply "neither here, neither there".
    Say, the transition from an "otter" to a "dolphin" necessitates a "middle species" that is ALREADY non-land YET NOT fully aquatic either.
    Basically, such a species has a LOWER rate of survival than its parent (or child, but that one isn't born yet) - and while it's not impossible to imagine it surviving, it does require a huge lot of "magical luck", which is anything BUT scientific.
    So while possible, such a transition requires a leap of BELIEF in its success - and that is NOT how you prove a scientific theory AT ALL.

    2. No, I meant something else entirely.
    What I'm saying is that the following "evolution tree" in vertebrates is EXTREMELY too LINEAR for anything even remotely random:
    Fish=>Amphibian=>Reptile=>Mammal/Bird.
    You see, there SHOULD have been SEVERAL (surviving, not hypothetical-on-paper) branches already by the Fishes, and then by every further step.
    Yet what do we see here?
    A very linear lineage of classes - always ONE class turning into ONE "further evolved" class.
    While I predict a "retort" with "all those branches appeared and died out" - I simply won't buy it happening THREE TIMES in the exact same manner over and over again.
    By the logic of "random mutations" multiplied by "millions of years of often very separate evolution" - there SHOULD be many MORE surviving branches in vertebrates.
    The fact there ISN'T - is a huge HOLE in the logic of "evolution" - again, requiring strong BELIEF in it"happening like we SAY it did".
    Facts and observations, though, DO NOT align too well with the current THEORY.

    3. Niches can only help that much - and it makes zero sense for sharks to coexist with dolphins and whales, when they literally share food sources.
    Given "random mutations TIMES millions of years", ONE of their sides should have "out-niched" the other eventually without a doubt.
    The fact neither did it, is a logical paradox that again invokes BELIEF over LOGIC.
    And there's a ton of such examples in almost every niche worldwide - more or less.
    Including bacteria not devouring everything alive in the world - despite being highly adaptive and preying for live matter all the time.
    All of these "rabbits and wolves"-type BALANCED systems highly invoke either BELIEF in them magically controlling themselves - or a necessity of an "external control".
    And let's leave it at this for now.
     
  19. Thunderbrd

    Thunderbrd C2C War Dog

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2010
    Messages:
    26,609
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Las Vegas
    So this would be true if mutation was all that we had to consider. But when we then consider selection, it seems hardly possible that every single stage (mutation) along the way towards flight (and I'm talking about 'a method to generate sustained lift in excess of an entity's weight under entirely under the entity's own internal power' of course) would be as or more survival prone than the previous stage. Therefore, either it would flat out never occur because it would be expecting the path of least resistance to flow uphill, AGAINST survival, which it could if an intellect were guiding the course, or its equally as miraculous that such a path actually is, at each of the thousands of stages of mutation, the most advantageous possible selection for that species. Either way points to an intelligence in design of one sort or another.

    And given the absolutely beneficial and wondrous nature of such sets of designs, imaging that an intelligence was not responsible for these 'sets' of designs wouldn't exist is as improbable to me as imagining that it all happens by random chance alone. It's clear that whatever forces may exist do prefer to allow chaos theory and cause and effect to dictate what happens for the most part, but the fact that these hard to envision potentialities even exist makes it almost impossible to envision that we aren't dealing with a designed world/reality that has a purpose and a story to tell, perhaps a hell of a lot of stories, like all of them.

    Darwin did a lot to show how life fine tunes itself. But one thing he was never able to show and no scientist has so far as the last I knew, is how a species can 'evolve' past a chromosome barrier. We have not been able to show how adding a chromosome can be done by mutation.

    @raxo2222 to comment on your reply in the other thread, I'm not attributing this to some kind of spirituality necessarily. I don't see how its so hard to think that each member of a species is just a cell in a larger mind that has thoughts and powers to enact change that you cannot fathom as a part of that. If you were a single cell in a body, you'd only know your role and what you do and have no ability to understand the larger body. If you were complicated enough to be able to categorize aspects of the world around you, you'd note the differences between you and other types of cells in the body and you'd see that each plays a different role in a larger system but you'd still not realize what the larger system's perspective is. We are not going to 'make' the planet sentient, my friend... we will DISCOVER the planet already is and has been all along. And it will be really mind blowing when we can actually begin to understand its perspective. At that point, we'll realize that all planets are sentient and life upon them is just a part of that, there to enable higher forms of thought processing. Then we'll realize that solar systems are also sentient as an entity, then galaxies. Nothing in reality isn't a form of storing information and no change in it is NOT a form of processing that information. All of that processing adds up to the definition of a mind, thought. Just as the cells in our brains add up to the larger mental constructs 'self' that we identify ourselves to be. For as much as we already observe about our level and downward, this should not be a foreign or fantastical concept. It should be an obviousness.
     
    Blazenclaw likes this.
  20. Blazenclaw

    Blazenclaw Chieftain

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    Messages:
    99
    Good points! I'll get to Somebody613's later, as they take more effort to decipher and explain...

    It's definitely true that when approaching from the standpoint of building toward a endgoal of our flight definition (the 'river' framework), it seems that individual stages may be disadvantaged. However, I point to the tribe of flying squirrels as one example to discuss ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flying_squirrel ) - they haven't flight as we defined (lift in excess), but are currently at one stepping stone (a method of generating lift). Genetic testing is clear they share a common ancestor with the Sciurinae subfamily of squirrels in general, but have differentiated from them by their namesake ability. Moreover, it's also not so simple as to say that this is one step; there are at least 50 species of flying squirrel, each slightly different with slightly different mutations and features, some better at 'flying' than others. This tribe of flying squirrels is thought to have separated 18-20 million years ago from a common ancestor, which is the sort of timescale we're talking about; they've existed for that long, and are thriving, all things considered. They are disadvantaged on ground compared to regular squirrels, correct; but does not their presence and variety indicate that the value in lift and thinner bone structure give them advantages to compensate?

    Given a generous estimation of a squirrel's lifespan of 10 years, that represents around 5 million generations for the separation of one specific species to split into a further 50, probably better than the originating species split. Undoubtedly of these 50 some are not as or more survival prone than others - a number will likely die out even without human interference - but on a whole, they are likely better than the original splitting species for the situation they are in.

    Assuming no unnatural selection a la humanity, it seems to suggest that in another 2 million generations some of these species will have won out and continued to evolve even lighter bodies, larger aerodynamic surfaces, even more highly jointed limbs for better control, etc, on the path toward lift > weight. At each of the thousands of stages of mutation, *of those managed to be generated by mutation*, we have evidence that there exists situations where the optimal choice leads toward effect compounding off of a prior step; better gliding, in this case. I do find it miraculous, in a way; the real world, beyond the concepts we simplify to words, is so incredibly complex as to defy imagination! But I do not see it as so wondrous that it requires some hypothetical entity to cause a snake to not bite a mouse, to let that mouse survive if it carries some stepping stone mutation. Statistics does that by itself; statistics is that wondrous entity.

    In short:
    Evolution is very, very slow. Intermediate 'steps' do exist; aren't even just different species evidence of this, no? Could you name some intermediate step that must exist for, well, any species whatsoever, that would confer no net disadvantage?

    Here's a question for my understanding; what constitutes a 'design', then? If 'flight' is so wonderous, is gliding half the wonderous design of flight? What about species that can only fly short distances, like turkeys? Is it the fact that the laws of physics, and the conditions of Earth, allow for solids to support themselves on gasses, is that what a design is? Humans (if we have pressure suits) could fly on Titan under our own armpower, but *we* would be the ones making such suits; are we the ones with the design then, or, what is?

    Here's an idea that may seem tangential at first. Our universe, as we understand, has select few physical constants ; relative strengths of strong and weak nuclear forces, gravitational constant, etc. If any one of these is off by a tiny percent relative to what they currently are, life simply could not exist or would not develop in the universe (stars can't form, matter doesn't condense, etc). One could say that it's incredible, how this universe seems just tailored fit for us! And it really is, in a way; because the other options could not host life, life could not form in universes where the 'settings', if you will, don't allow it. This is the anthropic principle; it seems marvelous, because of a survivorship bias.
    Essentially, I question: Are the 'designs' themselves wonderous from some standpoint outside of humanity (if such a viewpoint exists?), or is it just that we exist to understand them (sentience) that which makes them interesting? If there isn't a good definition for a 'design' for some entity to design towards or 'river' to flow to... then what?

    I do believe we have ample evidence for chromosomal changes occurring through mutation? A quick search shows many studies related to evolution of chromosome numbers in varying species (though commonly butterflies, known for rapid reproduction and mutation rates specifically in chromosomes). There's even some evidence for this in humans: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15305057 , and though not wholesale creation of a new chromosome, that type of known mutation in such a small examined timespan (what, 50 years, subset of a single species?!) is the type of thing one might expect to see from a random mutation.

    This is a really interesting idea I enjoy as well! I would highlight a few things though; much as our brain is created from a net of neurons, it cannot directly interfere with the level of neurons. Abstracting a brain to a black box, it cannot directly interfere with the individual neurons that make it up - it's an emergent system . Taking the same approach, if you consider a nation as a black box, it may take in signals in form of citizens and goods, and send signals by similar means. I would say that this does not necessitate that such a system is intelligent, mind you - fleas have brains as well but talking to one is a moot point - but that if it were, how would an intelligent system communicate to another? Not really in any way we could understand, at least without a good deal of effort. I recall reading a story about galaxies talking to each other in such a manner, but can't find it now, drat!
     

Share This Page