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Archive for the ‘evolution’ category

Apr 24, 2021

Martin Rees and Frederick Lamb on humanity’s fate

Posted by in categories: alien life, cybercrime/malcode, evolution, military

Rees explained how his astronomy background meshes with his concern for humanity’s fate:

People often ask does being an astronomer have any effect on one’s attitude toward these things. I think it does in a way, because it makes us aware of the long-range future. We’re aware that it’s taken about 4 billion years for life to evolve from simple beginnings to our biosphere of which we are a part, but we also know that the sun is less than halfway through its life and the universe may go on forever. So we are not the culmination of evolution. Post-humans are going to have far longer to evolve. We can’t conceive what they’d be like, but if life is a rarity in the universe, then, of course, the stakes are very high if we snuff things out this century.

Bottom line: From nuclear weapons to biowarfare to cyberattacks, humanity has much to overcome. Martin Rees and Frederick Lamb discuss the obstacles we face as we look forward to humanity’s future on Earth.

Apr 22, 2021

This Wooden Sculpture Is Twice as Old as Stonehenge and the Pyramids

Posted by in categories: evolution, food

As the Times reports, researchers have been puzzling over the age of the Shigir sculpture for decades. The debate has major implications for the study of prehistory, which tends to emphasize a Western-centric view of human development.

In 1997, Russian scientists carbon-dated the totem pole to about 9500 years ago. Many in the scientific community rejected these findings as implausible: Reluctant to believe that hunter-gatherer communities in the Urals and Siberia had created art or formed cultures of their own, says Terberger to the Times, researchers instead presented a narrative of human evolution that centered European history, with ancient farming societies in the Fertile Crescent eventually sowing the seeds of Western civilization.

Prevailing views over the past century, adds Terberger, regarded hunter-gatherers as “inferior to early agrarian communities emerging at that time in the Levant. At the same time, the archaeological evidence from the Urals and Siberia was underestimated and neglected.”

Continue reading “This Wooden Sculpture Is Twice as Old as Stonehenge and the Pyramids” »

Apr 16, 2021

Transcendental Cybernetics: Imagining the Technological Singularity

Posted by in categories: biological, evolution, singularity

The Syntellect Emergence seems to be a cosmic necessity, and in the long run, any voices calling to resist the cybernetic fusion of the mind will be no more influential than the voices calling, right now, to eradicate civilization and return to the jungle. Nature’s tendency to build up hierarchies of emergent patterns, the heuristic law of evolution, supersedes the human race itself. We see it time and again, Nature is constantly trying to combine seemingly opposing forces, to assemble existing parts into the new wholes through the universal process of radical emergence. We are bound to transcend our biology, our human condition, our limited dimensionality, we are bound to transcend ourselves.

#TranscendentalCybernetics #CyberneticSingularity #SyntellectEmergence


Syntellect Emergence is hypothesized to be the next meta-system transition, becoming one Global Mind — that constitutes the Cybernetic Singularity.

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Apr 16, 2021

Episode 46 – Harvard Geologist Andy Knoll Sums Up The Grand Sweep Of Earth’s History

Posted by in category: evolution

Great new episode with Harvard University geologist Andrew Knoll who chats about the grand sweep of Earth’s history.


Harvard University geologist Andrew H. Knoll takes on the grand sweep of Earth’s formation and evolution in his new book A Brief History of Earth: Four Billion Years in Eight Chapters. He succinctly describes Earth from its cosmological beginnings in a molecular cloud on through to the present day. It’s a fine line between the vacuum of space and the planet on which we walk.

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Apr 16, 2021

Island Gigantism and Dwarfism: Evolutionary “Island Rule” Confirmed

Posted by in categories: biological, evolution

It is an old-standing theory in evolutionary ecology: animal species on islands have the tendency to become either giants or dwarfs in comparison to mainland relatives. Since its formulation in the 1960s, however, the ‘island rule’ has been severely debated by scientists. In a new publication in Nature Ecology and Evolution on April 15, 2021, researchers solved this debate by analyzing thousands of vertebrate species. They show that the island rule effects are widespread in mammals, birds, and reptiles, but less evident in amphibians.

Dwarf hippos and elephants in the Mediterranean islands are examples of large species that exhibited dwarfism. On the other hand, small mainland species may have evolved into giants after colonizing islands, giving rise to such oddities as the St Kilda field mouse (twice the size of its mainland ancestor), the infamous dodo of Mauritius (a giant pigeon), and the Komodo dragon.

In 1973, Leigh van Valen was the first that formulated the theory, based on the study by mammologist J. Bristol Foster in 1964, that animal species follow an evolutionary pattern when it comes to their body sizes. Species on islands have the tendency to become either giants or dwarfs in comparison to mainland relatives. “Species are limited to the environment on an island. The level of threat from predatory animals is much lower or non-existent,” says Ana Benítez-Lopez, who carried out the research at Radboud University, now researcher at Doñana Biological Station (EBD-CSIC, Spain). “But also limited resources are available.” However, until now, many studies showed conflicting results which led to severe debate about this theory: is it really a pattern, or just an evolutionary coincidence?

Apr 15, 2021

Malware Variants: More Sophisticated, Prevalent and Evolving in 2021

Posted by in categories: cybercrime/malcode, evolution

Employees play a vital role in ensuring their company’s cybersecurity bubble remains intact. Many malware campaigns begin by sending an e-mail communication to employees. To learn basic cybersecurity hygiene, employees must become familiar with password management, identify and report security threats, and recognize suspicious behavior. Regular content and training will assist employees in countering any malware threats they encounter.

Adopt a culture of comprehensive security.

Given the ongoing evolution of malware attacks and their capability to surpass what they were capable of, organizations should prioritize a strong malware protection strategy. Consultation with experienced cybersecurity experts like Indusface can help them create a solution that meets their needs.

Apr 15, 2021

5 Undersung Harbingers Of Earth’s Ancient Evolution

Posted by in category: evolution

New book offers unique perspective on Earth’s history.

Apr 6, 2021

Humans Were Apex Predators for Two Million Years – Our Stone Age Ancestors Mostly Ate Meat

Posted by in categories: evolution, existential risks, food, genetics, military

Researchers at Tel Aviv University were able to reconstruct the nutrition of stone age humans.

In a paper published in the Yearbook of the American Physical Anthropology Association, Dr. Miki Ben-Dor and Prof. Ran Barkai of the Jacob M. Alkov Department of Archaeology at Tel Aviv University, together with Raphael Sirtoli of Portugal, show that humans were an apex predator for about two million years. Only the extinction of larger animals (megafauna) in various parts of the world, and the decline of animal food sources toward the end of the stone age, led humans to gradually increase the vegetable element in their nutrition, until finally they had no choice but to domesticate both plants and animals — and became farmers.

“So far, attempts to reconstruct the diet of stone-age humans were mostly based on comparisons to 20th century hunter-gatherer societies,” explains Dr. Ben-Dor. “This comparison is futile, however, because two million years ago hunter-gatherer societies could hunt and consume elephants and other large animals — while today’s hunter gatherers do not have access to such bounty. The entire ecosystem has changed, and conditions cannot be compared. We decided to use other methods to reconstruct the diet of stone-age humans: to examine the memory preserved in our own bodies, our metabolism, genetics, and physical build. Human behavior changes rapidly, but evolution is slow. The body remembers.”

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Apr 5, 2021

Inara Tabir

Posted by in categories: evolution, finance, space

April 6 — 7, 2021, 9:00am — 5:00pm EST

MAKING IN SPACE
FROM MINING TO MANUFACTURING
As humanity expands into space and unlocks the incalculable abundance of the CisLunar Econosphere, Orbital Manufacturing is a necessary first step.

Here on Earth, settlements emerged around concentrations of natural resources: rivers, forests, ores, harbors, fertile fields. Roads then developed between the resources and settlements, and towns grew. Resource extraction (mining) and resource optimization (manufacturing) evolved. Eventually, specialization led to local, regional, and national competitive advantages. With growth speeding the process, communities and people prospered!

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Mar 31, 2021

Bones evolved to act like batteries, 400-million-year-old fish suggest

Posted by in categories: education, evolution

The earliest bones, however, were very different from human skeletons today. In the prehistoric past, bone was more like concrete, growing on the exterior of fish to provide a protective shell. But according to a new study in the journal Science Advances, the first bones with living cells—like those found in humans—evolved about 400 million years ago and acted as skeletal batteries: They supplied prehistoric fish with minerals needed to travel over greater distances.

The fossilized creatures in the analysis are known as osteostracans. “I affectionately call them beetle mermaids,” says Yara Haridy, a doctoral candidate at the Berlin Museum of Nature and lead author of the study. These fish had a hard, armor-encased front end and a flexible tail growing out the back. They had no jaws, and their bone tissue encased their bodies. These kinds of fish are critical to understanding the origins of the hard parts that shaped vertebrate evolution.

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