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Can Evolution Learn?

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posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 12:35 AM
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a reply to: Phantom423



How can humans have evolved. Today we have to be educated to live within the social system we have created.

Each year kids start fresh at grade one. Why...... because they have not evolved to automatically fit in. They have to be groomed and shaped.

It is not we humans who evovle it is the social system we create that evolves. And we have to be shaped and groomed to drift it and fit in.




edit on 27.06.08 by spy66 because: (no reason given)




posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 12:45 AM
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originally posted by: Astyanax
A paper titled How Can Evolution Learn? has just been published in the journal Trends in Ecology & Evolution. In it, the authors propose that, under the influence of evolutionary pressure, genomes may behave like neural networks.

Neural networks are computer networks that ‘learn’ from ‘experience’ to produce better and better solutions to the problems they are asked to process. Every time a neural network produces a good solution, the connexions within the network that produced the solution are reinforced. When the network is later given another problem of the same kind, it will tend to use the same connexions to process it rather than starting from scratch and trying every possible path to a solution all over again.

Humans and other animals also learn the same way: successful processing paths in our brains are strengthened, unsuccessful ones atrophy. Over time the person or animal comes to acquire a useful behavioural trait or skill.

*


It isn’t very shocking to imagine that biological information-processing networks should have this property. The design of artificial neural networks is based on that of human brains and nervous systems. What is novel is the idea that gene networks, too, may work this way. Genomes may have an evolutionary bias towards developing workable adaptations to selective pressures, rather than just producing random mutations.

This hypothesis introduces a teleological factor into the model of evolution by natural selection. Of course, the authors of the paper are not suggesting that the hypothetical bias towards producing useful rather than deleterious mutations was God-given, but that it is itself a product of evolution. However, Creationists may be tempted to embrace the idea that life has a ‘designed’ preference towards evolving beneficial adaptations.

The original paper is behind a paywall, but this news article gives the gist: Life May Actually Be Getting Better at Evolving.

_______


Note
Please stay on topic. Other thread participants may do as they wish, but I shall only respond to those whose replies make it plain that they have read at least the linked news item. I shall make no comment on generic claims in favour of either creationism or evolution.



I'm in no way a scientist but isn't evolution a form of learning what changes in a species need to be made to survive in its environment in regards to living conditions predators, etc.
edit on 19-3-2017 by Jahari because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 06:13 AM
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a reply to: Jahari


Correct.


Its odd that the eskimos never adapeded to the artic winters and grew fur.



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 08:08 AM
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originally posted by: spy66
a reply to: Phantom423



How can humans have evolved. Today we have to be educated to live within the social system we have created.

Each year kids start fresh at grade one. Why...... because they have not evolved to automatically fit in. They have to be groomed and shaped.

It is not we humans who evovle it is the social system we create that evolves. And we have to be shaped and groomed to drift it and fit in.





I'm not quite sure what you're position is on evolution. However, I think the OP's post was directed more at the hard science rather than the social science. Social pressures are part of what drives evolution - not just humans, but everything. It's a dynamic process.

Regarding the Eskimos, they have actually evolved to tolerate the cold, although fur was not part of that evolution. Here's an article which describes a gene variant which may contribute to their extreme cold tolerance:



www.nytimes.com...



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 11:44 AM
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originally posted by: spy66
a reply to: Jahari


Correct.


Its odd that the eskimos never adapeded to the artic winters and grew fur.



They haven't been there long enough. Evolution takes a pretty long time. Or they are from the hollow earth. Lol



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 01:23 PM
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a reply to: Jahari


I'm in no way a scientist but isn't evolution a form of learning what changes in a species need to be made to survive in its environment in regards to living conditions predators, etc.

As I understand it, not at all.

It has the has the same effect but the cause is quite different.



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 01:23 PM
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Verdammt double post.

edit on 19/3/17 by Astyanax because: %=÷÷+



posted on Mar, 19 2017 @ 09:35 PM
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Upon 2nd review of the links, it seems I fell for a sleight of hand in the OP and have to reevaluate my initial take on this

This isn't really about whether or not evolution can learn, but more about if the genome can learn. Not sure the need to equate the two, since evolution and genomes are two vastly different things.

Thus the answer to the title of this thread would have to be NO – evolution doesn't learn. It still is the probabilistic result [effect] of ecological interactions and other processes [causes]. For this simple reason, nevermind that it isn't a physical entity, it can't learn.

Perhaps a more suitable title to this thread, and Watson's study should be: "Can Genomes Learn?".

And the answer to that seems to be most definitely YES.

Genomes are getting better at evolving because of stronger, more plastic, and responsive gene networks. They can "remember" and store old phenotypes for potential expression at another time. Genomes are getting better at adapting and producing adaptable phenotypes, thereby increasing their evolvability. They are in essence learning to evolve better, and there's something tangible to support this.

If in fact genomes are getting better at producing just the right phenotype at just the right time in space, what impact does this have on the efficacy of natural selection?
edit on 19-3-2017 by PhotonEffect because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 24 2017 @ 09:43 PM
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a reply to: Astyanax

I almost shelled out the money for the article but decided against it. Just wanted to say it is good to see your writing again, however brief.



posted on Mar, 26 2017 @ 09:51 AM
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a reply to: PhotonEffect
Storytelling is easy.

Once there was a rainforest and some apes...

Better not watch the video below beyond 8:35 if one doesn't want to be distracted from the real issue concerning interdependency, retention and imagined gradual development over multiple generations vs the actual trend being observed:

edit on 26-3-2017 by whereislogic because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 26 2017 @ 10:48 AM
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Wouldn't learning evolution have examples of camouflage or hunting strategies suited to their body since Evo is trying to understand why things are what they are. Like why are some animals perfectly suited to blending with their environments. Snakes various can look like dead leafs, or artic animals are all white, to sharks having white bellies so they blend with the sun light. Lions blend with plains while zebra purposly stand out an confuse too look like a larger entity.

It not like they got these traits because of being taught like tricks, but more like reflecting and observation from being long time exposure to the environment. And then something in the body says that makes sense, and becomes instincal. Not so much learned just absorbed and or inherited. It not like they wished it, and it happened. It not like animals show imagination or creativity to have gained some of their mechanical defenses.

Maybe this has to do with that Consciousness is a user interface of sorts?
edit on 26-3-2017 by Specimen because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 26 2017 @ 11:18 AM
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Hi all. Just a reminder that I will only respond to posts discussing the material in the OP links.



posted on Mar, 27 2017 @ 02:02 AM
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a reply to: PhotonEffect


it seems I fell for a sleight of hand in the OP... This isn't really about whether or not evolution can learn, but more about if the genome can learn.

I stated that explicitly in the OP. The title of the published paper is ‘How Can Evolution Learn?’ Nothing I can do about that.




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