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Science Forum

  1. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    16 Nov '12 17:10
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-humans-slowly-surely-intellectual-emotional.html#ajTabs

    Mutations not being selected against are adding up to dumber humans. However, forewarned is forearmed. (Enough mutations and we might HAVE four arms
  2. 16 Nov '12 18:35 / 4 edits
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-humans-slowly-surely-intellectual-emotional.html#ajTabs

    Mutations not being selected against are adding up to dumber humans. However, forewarned is forearmed. (Enough mutations and we might HAVE four arms
    Did their calculations take into account that the 'selection' against those bad mutations does not require people to actually die as a direct result of being less intelligent?
    Being less intelligent may reduce the probability of reproductive success even if no actual death-through-stupidity is involved and, if their calculations simply ignored that, their calculations would probably be completely invalid. I note I see no mention of reproductive success nor anything that implies it in that link so I wonder if they erroneously ignored this.
    This is a very common error people make about evolution; they either don't understand or keep forgetting that it is not really about individual survival at all but passing on genes.
  3. 16 Nov '12 19:05
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-humans-slowly-surely-intellectual-emotional.html#ajTabs

    Mutations not being selected against are adding up to dumber humans. However, forewarned is forearmed. (Enough mutations and we might HAVE four arms
    I am estimating that it will take hundreds of generations before the average IQ is down to my level. People seem just smart enough to be dangerous anyway.
  4. 16 Nov '12 19:32
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-humans-slowly-surely-intellectual-emotional.html#ajTabs

    Mutations not being selected against are adding up to dumber humans. However, forewarned is forearmed. (Enough mutations and we might HAVE four arms
    They've got it all wrong. Whats really happening is a much wider variety of genes is now possible thus opening up the possibility of greater intelligence.
    Of course what they totally ignore is the fact that a large proportion of the population growth is currently amongst the poor which do not benefit as much from modern medicine anyway.
  5. 16 Nov '12 20:25
    I'm also unsure as to how they conclude that intelligence is now not selected against - it seems to me that the world is much more complex than in prehistoric days, and well-educated people tend to do be successful at reproducing.
  6. Standard member Soothfast
    0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,
    16 Nov '12 22:15
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    http://medicalxpress.com/news/2012-11-humans-slowly-surely-intellectual-emotional.html#ajTabs

    Mutations not being selected against are adding up to dumber humans. However, forewarned is forearmed. (Enough mutations and we might HAVE four arms
    I could have told you that from 10 years of teaching.
  7. Standard member Soothfast
    0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,
    16 Nov '12 22:18
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    I'm also unsure as to how they conclude that intelligence is now not selected against - it seems to me that the world is much more complex than in prehistoric days, and well-educated people tend to do be successful at reproducing.
    That's because it's still just as easy as ever for Tab A to find Slot B.
  8. Standard member sonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    17 Nov '12 15:08
    Originally posted by Soothfast
    That's because it's still just as easy as ever for Tab A to find Slot B.
    Countering that is the Flynn effect, where IQ scores are rising in one aspect of testing, not in math or general but in abstract thinking, those scores have been rising around the world regardless of economic status:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flynn_effect