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Author: Edward Berge

Grandmothers were critical for human evolution

Grandmothers were critical for human evolution

From the Into to this article from 2012: “According to a study published today in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the answer is grandmothers. ‘Grandmothering was the initial step toward making us who we are,’ says senior author Kristen Hawkes, an anthropologist at the University of Utah. In 1997 Hawkes proposed the ‘grandmother hypothesis,’ a theory that explains menopause by citing the under-appreciated evolutionary value of grandmothering. Hawkes says that grandmothering helped us to develop ‘a whole…

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Developing through relations

Developing through relations

Subtitle: “An Embodied, co-active systems approach” at this link. The abstract follows. “In recent decades, the developmental sciences have undergone a relational turn. Epigenetic (Gottlieb & Lickliter, 2007), embodied (Thompson, 2007), relational (Lerner &Overton, 2008) and systems (Kelso, 2003) approaches are transforming the ways in which we think about the nature and origins of psychological structures. At their most basic level, relational and systems approaches analyze the developmental origins of order and variability not in terms of sets of separable…

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Sapience by Walden Hanes

Sapience by Walden Hanes

Here is his Facebook post discussing some of the AI research used in his book. “The opening scenes of my novel ๐—ฆ๐—”๐—ฃ๐—œ๐—˜๐—ก๐—–๐—˜ take place at the ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—บ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ฏ, a research facility in 2036 that seeks to create ๐—ฆ๐˜†๐—ป๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฐ ๐—–๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ผ๐˜‚๐˜€๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€, a theoretical form of Artificial Intelligence possessing human-like intuition and self-awareness. ย  “Early in the novel, the ๐—ฆ๐—ถ๐—บ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ฏ pursues its goal using methods I imagined based on current ๐—ฃ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฏ๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—ถ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜๐—ถ๐—ฐ ๐—–๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐˜๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด theory. I merged this probabilistic approach with aspects of the ๐—™๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—™๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ…

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On balance

On balance

False equivalence. The cartoon below highlights the difference. Add to that democracy and fascism, love and hate, truth and lies, humanity and selfishness, right and wrong, health and sickness and so on. There is no middle ground between them where some mythical compromise or balance lies. ย  I’ve long studied kung fu, where the philosophy and practice emphasize the shifting and dynamic balance of yin and yang, empty and full, left and right, body and mind and so on. Those…

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The Social Dilemma

The Social Dilemma

The title of a new documentary showing how the big social media companies use psychology for surveillance to manipulate users to unconsciously accept programming and buy products. It’s an important topic but fails in that the makers did not use any of the persuasive techniques the social media companies use to get their own points across. It’s just dry, boring fact after fact that lost my interest a third of the way through. At one point they did try a…

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Beyond free will: The embodied emergence of conscious agency

Beyond free will: The embodied emergence of conscious agency

Article by Michael Mascolo and Eeva Kallio in Philosophical Psychology (2019). The abstract: “Is it possible to reconcile the concept of conscious agency with the view that humans are biological creatures subject to material causality? The problem of conscious agency is complicated by the tendency to attribute autonomous powers of control to conscious processes. In this paper, we offer an embodied process model of conscious agency. We begin with the concept of embodied emergence โ€“ the idea that psychological processes…

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Body representations, peripersonal space and the self: Humans, animals, robots.

Body representations, peripersonal space and the self: Humans, animals, robots.

Title of the new ebook from Frontiers in Science. The blurb: “The human self has many facets: there is the physical body and then there are different concepts or representations supported by processes in the brain such as the ecological, social, temporal, conceptual, and experiential self. The basis is constituted by the ecological or sensorimotor self that deals with the configuration of the body in space and its action possibilities. A number of concepts like body schema or body image…

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Pain and other feelings in human and animals

Pain and other feelings in human and animals

In this article the Damasios challenge Key that fish cannot feel pain because, counter to Key’s claim, pain is not the exclusive domain of the brain in humans or animals. The abstract: “Evidence from neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and neuropsychology suggests that the experience of feelings in humans does not depend exclusively on structures of the cerebral cortex. It does not seem warranted to deny the possibility of feeling in animals on the grounds that their cerebral cortices are not comparable to…

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Ideological purity

Ideological purity

I recently appreciated this Facecrook comment on the topic, copied below for those not on the crooked media platform: “Purity, as an idea, as a practice, is inherently violent. Nature isn’t pure. Beings are born amid blood and piss and shit, and when we die, our bodies rot and feed the lives of countless souls. Dirt is dirty and its what we’re born from and what we become. Pick up a handful of dirt and you are holding, literally, your…

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Civilization requires virtue signaling

Civilization requires virtue signaling

This is a frequent topic of interest to us. So here‘s an article by Geoffrey Miller, an evolutionary psychology professor at UNM. A few excerpts follow: “We all virtue signal. […] Let’s not pretend otherwise.” “Thereโ€™s virtue signaling, and then thereโ€™s virtue signaling. […] On the one hand, thereโ€™s what economists call ‘cheap talk’: signals that are cheap, quick and easy to fake, and that arenโ€™t accurate cues of underlying traits or values. […] On the other hand, thereโ€™s virtue…

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