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Thursday, December 28
by Ron on December 28, 2006 03:26PM (PST)
This is the personal blog of Robert Godwin, the author of "One Cosmos under God," which he discussed in the WIE interview in my previous SCIY posting. Godwin describes his book as: "the fruit of a lifetime of thought attempting to synthesize material from a number of diverse domains, including cosmology, theoretical biology, quantum physics, developmental psychoanalysis, attachment theory, anthropology, history, mysticism and theology, into a coherent, self-consistent, non-reductionistic whole." — In "One Cosmos," Dr. Godwin reveals a humorous alter-ego whom he calls: 'Gagdad Bob.' His posting for today begins as follows:
Now, I'm not an anthropopogist. But I did stay at a Holiday Inn, and I do know a thing or two about a thing or three. And one of the things I know is that pre-human hominids only became human because of the specifically trinitarian nature of the human developmental situation: mother-father-helpless baby. This, by the way, is one of the many reasons I do not believe intellignt life will ever be found on other planets, because genes and natural selection are only the necessary but not sufficient cause of our humanness.
In other words, even supposing that life arose elsewhere and began evolving large brains, a large brain would never be sufficient to allow for humanness. Rather, the key to the entire enterprise -- the missing link, so to speak -- is the extremely unlikely invention of the helpless and neurologically incomplete infant who must be born approximately 12 months "premature" so that his brain can be assembled at the same time it is being mothered. If we had come out of the womb neurologically complete, then there would be no "space" for humanness to emerge or take root. We would be Neanderthals. Literally. ... more »
Tuesday, December 19
by Ron on December 19, 2006 03:24PM (PST)
...What I've basically been saying is, right now we carry a fourteen-billion-year history within us, a fourteen-billion-year history of surprises. You are a lump of quarks. So am I. Those quarks are joined in atoms. Those atoms are joined in something very complex called molecules. But we also carry fourteen billion years or more of another kind of time within us—future. The future's as real within us as the universe was real in those first tiny axioms of the Big Bang. I'm not predicting that you and I will be around to see that future. But in one form or another, our basic ingredients sure as heck will be.
And we have a unique responsibility. We're among the first batch of quarks we know trying out this new surprise called consciousness. Every new surprise—every new upgrade—is tested. Protons, for example, were tested to the nth degree. They've gone through every kind of catastrophe you can possibly imagine. They've gone through the bashing of the initial high-speed plasma soup. They've gone through the crunch and shattering of dying stars. And they've pulled through it all. Right? They're the ultimate survivors in this universe. But we'll see whether consciousness is able to survive. We will see. ... more »
Friday, December 15
by Ron on December 15, 2006 03:41PM (PST)
More evidence that the basic "laws of physics" favor evolution of life? (ron)
Nanoscale ice formations resembling the double helices of DNA will form when water molecules are frozen inside carbon nanotubes, detailed computer simulations suggest.
Researchers at the University of Nebraska, US, used a supercomputer to run detailed mathematical models of the behaviour of water molecules. In their simulations, they inserted the molecules into carbon nanotubes under high pressure, before cooling them to -23°C.
The scientists were surprised to see the molecules organise themselves into "spiral staircase" arrangements similar to those of a DNA helix. "It was very unexpected," Xiao Cheng Zeng, the computational nanotechnology expert who led the research told New Scientist. ... more »
A Review of Dipesh Chakrabarty's "Provincializing Europe" by Amit Chaudhuri (London Review of Books) Debashish
AntiMatters vol 3 no 4 is out koantum
Classicism, post-classicism and Ranjabati Sircar’s work: re-defining the terms of Indian contemporary dance discourses by Alessandra Lopez y Royo Debashish
LACMA 111909 - Debashish Banerji Debashish
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Within the limits of capitalism, economizing means taking care - Bernard Stiegler
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Within the limits of capitalism, economizing means taking care - Bernard Stiegler