Animal minds Intelligent Design Logic and First Principles of right reason Mathematics Mind Probability

Robert J. Marks: Pigeons can solve the Monty Hall problem. But can you?

The dilemma pits human folk intuition against actual probability theory, with surprising results. But the howler is that pigeons tended to get this right more easily than humans – at least in one study. (Another study found that it depended on the humans’ age.)

Animal minds Intelligent Design Neuroscience

Debunking another claim that an alleged “pillar” of human exceptionalism has “fallen”

Stripped of the rhetoric about supposedly fallen “pillars of human exceptionalism,” the researchers found a neuronal response in carrion crows that “might be a broad marker” for consciousness. Well, sure, it might. But before we get carried away, the consciousness we should know the most about is human consciousness, which remains almost a complete mystery to us, despite much research.

Animal minds Intelligent Design Neuroscience

If spiders are as intelligent as many vertebrates …

… and it appears that they are, what is the role of the brain in mediating intelligence? Spiders have rather different brains from vertebrates; much simpler, for one thing: Ronald R. Hoy, Cornell University professor of neurobiology and behavior, considers the spider “one of the smartest of all invertebrates.” But while its behavior is comparable Read More…

Animal minds Cell biology Intelligent Design

Bacteria are smarter than we think

At Wired: As they cleared paths of food, the E.coli tended to move toward unexplored, broth-rich areas, which ultimately helped them evacuate the maze. It took about 10 hours for about 1 percent of the multiple generations of bacteria to collectively solve the puzzle. That may not sound fast, but it’s five times faster than if the organisms had just been swimming around randomly, says Phan.