Page 1 of 1

Reading Recommendation

Posted: Mon Feb 05, 2018 10:35 pm
by Pat D
Before the Dawn
Recovering the Lost History of Our Ancestors
by Nicholas Wade

An absolutely fascinating look at the development of human societies during the species' expansion out of Africa and across the globe. Where the author's info may be disputed, this is acknowledged. An honest book of great delight.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:52 am
by catweazel
Does the author acknowledge that the 'out of Africa' theory is now disputed by 'out of Asia' evidence?

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:00 am
by Pat D
I believe you're talking developments of a more recent nature; they will be chewed over for a long time before there's any consensus.
There may be flaws in this book, actually I know there are, however, that does not take away from the whole here.
A fascinating and thought-provoking book.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:08 am
by catweazel
Pat D wrote:A fascinating and thought-provoking book.
More fascinating and more thought-provoking is the idea that, as apes, we merely got lucky with having brains developed enough to support a conscious mind. If not for that fluke of nature we might all be cockroaches now.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 2:35 am
by BenTrabetere
catweazel wrote:More fascinating and more thought-provoking is the idea that, as apes, we merely got lucky with having brains....
I do not know if it is more fascinating or thought-provoking, but many years a paper was published in The Journal of Irreproducible Results entitled "The Scent of Man." Not the "ascent" or the "descent" - it was more of a lateral move.

It postulated the success of human kind was not based on our intelligence, but on our stupidity. Our ancestors took to walking because they were too stupid to climb back into the trees, invented tools like spears and arrows because they too stupid to take on something their own size, etc.

Sadly, I am unable to locate the article online. If you are not familiar with JIR, here are a couple fascinating, thought-provoking papers it published.
How to Make a Hummingbird Stew Feeder
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/649736/posts

Utilizing Infinite Loops to Compute an Approximate Value of Infinity
http://www-user.slac.stanford.edu/jimstan/Infinity.htm

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 2:52 am
by catweazel
BenTrabetere wrote:It postulated the success of human kind was not based on our intelligence, but on our stupidity. Our ancestors took to walking because they were too stupid to climb back into the trees, invented tools like spears and arrows because they too stupid to take on something their own size, etc.
I can relate to that. I've always said that modern society is firmly built upon human stupidity.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:20 am
by Moem
catweazel wrote:I've always said that modern society is firmly built upon human stupidity.
Well, that's at least something that is not going to be in short supply any day soon...

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:33 am
by catweazel
Moem wrote:
catweazel wrote:I've always said that modern society is firmly built upon human stupidity.
Well, that's at least something that is not going to be in short supply any day soon...
If stupidity ever reaches $0.000001 cents per tonne, my wife will be very rich. She has drilling rights on my head.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:43 am
by Faust
catweazel wrote:I can relate to that. I've always said that modern society is firmly built upon human stupidity.
Not just modern society .....
You reminded me of something that dear old Frank Zappa said ( quoted from memory )

" Scientists say the universe is built from hydrogen , because it is more abundant than anything else ,
but if that reasoning is correct , the universe must surely be built out of stupidity "


I've long thought of making a power station that runs on stupidity ( although my early experiments were frankly disappointing ) .
But how about mindless chatter ? -
That is a definite physical force and there's loads of it , wherever people congregate , and the airwaves are absolutely PACKED with it !
I feel a Nobel Prize coming on .....

What was the thread topic again ?
My mind wanders if it's not kept on a short leash .

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 6:41 pm
by Portreve
Hmm...

Guns of the South, an alternative-history fiction novel by Harry Turtledove.

Nine Princes in Amber by Roger Zelazny

Battlestar Galactica: Armageddon a reboot attempt by Richard Hatch

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Tue Feb 06, 2018 7:33 pm
by Pat D
Roger Zelazny.
My All-Time favourite writer, across all genres.
"Lord of Light" is superb.

Re: Reading Recommendation

Posted: Wed Feb 07, 2018 12:18 am
by jimallyn
“Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.” - Albert Einstein