A lesson in science media gullibility. This time it concerns a duck.
… it is a short step to thinking that mushrooms have minds. A Miami University biologist has taken that step…
Death, seen as the idea of “ending it all,” is an abstraction. To know that you will die one day is to engage in abstract thought. Animals don’t do that. If they did, we’d be in big trouble.
Octopuses, squid, and cuttlefish are surprisingly smart for invertebrates. Researchers are gaining some insights into how intelligence helps them.
At Science News: “The preserved central nervous system lends insight into the ancient crab’s behavior, the researchers say. Because the fossil brain is so similar to the brains of modern horseshoe crabs, Bicknell says, it’s safe to say the ancient animal’s walking, breathing and even feeding habits were probably similar to horseshoe crabs’ today, including eating with their legs. “
Basically, snakes can be stupider than we think and smarter than we think at the same time. Except, around here, we don’t think that the “smartness” stuff is the snakes’ own. They got that from the design of the universe. Otherwise, they would be coiling around the stock market too. And they aren’t.
What to say when you find yourself among self-assured elite sloganeers. The actual history of neuroscience in the last century has not been kind to materialist assertions and assumptions.
The life forms that use rocks and stones as tools are reversing a process: bringing the rock to smash prey instead of bringing prey to be smashed on the rock.
There is a current conflict among researchers as to whether our number sense is biological or cultural (nature or nurture). But the conflict appears to miss the point: Elaborate number sense depends on the ability to abstract. If that ability is biological, where exactly is it? If it is cultural, it is an iteration of the ability to abstract.
Zoe Muller is right to wonder why researchers simply assumed that the giraffe lacked the wit for social skills without having studied the species much. It would be interesting to know if “evolutionary” assumptions underlay that view. Generally, such assumptions should be treated with caution. For example, “evolutionary” assumptions would not prompt researchers to believe that octopuses are as intelligent as they are.
No one involved hopes that any of us will ask the obvious question: If the birds understand currency, why are they not using currency themselves?
Yale: A new Yale study suggests that, in a sense, mammals dream about the world they are about to experience before they are even born.
Caitlin O’Connell: The unwritten code of conduct surrounding play lets them explore many possible outcomes.
Researchers: Complex vision evolved independently in vertebrates and arthropods and so the ability to distinguish living from non-living motion using the relative positioning of the joints has most likely arisen convergently in the two groups of animals.
In the study, the wolf pups were raised so as to trust humans and the dog pups were not. Yet the wolf pups did not trust humans — but the dog pups did.