[ExI] Group Selection Advances

hkhenson hkhenson at rogers.com
Sat May 2 02:06:16 UTC 2009

At 03:43 PM 5/1/2009, you wrote:
>At 03:14 PM 5/1/2009 -0700, Keith wrote:
>>>Isn't this disproved by the falling birth rates in first world societies?
>>No.  The only thing this shows is a temporary mismatch between the 
>>environment (including culture as environmental element) and the genes.
>>>Surely it isn't in the self interest of the genes to reduce reproduction?
>>Never.  By definition.
>And hence, by definition, an appeal to the "self interest" of genes 
>alone is insufficient. Keith, you're a meme guy. Calling culture an 
>"environmental element" is dangerously simplistic. Culture is a 
>turbulent memetic structure

It is now, but there have been *long* periods of human evolution 
where it was damn near a constant.  For over a million years the 
"hand ax" (killer frisbie) was a cultural constant.

>instantiated inside the phenotypes that are the cutting surface of 
>selection, and distributed across mutually reachable phenotypes. So 
>a gene-set builds a brain that hosts and expresses a mishmash of 
>memes at various levels of abstraction and power and persistence, 
>and that creates a Baldwin effect that helps shape the genomes of 
>subsequent generations, so we're always talking about 
>*co*-evolutionary elements and sets.

Hey, *I* am the Dr. Clark fan.  If you buy into his well supported 
model, then the culture set new selection conditions for genes, 
selecting a set of personality genes that were not favored in waring 
hunter gatherers.  Definitely co-evolution.

>I wouldn't be surprised if something like Benford's datavores and 
>kenes (see THE SPIKE) already traverse the computational cloud of 
>contiguous minds that can communicate and manipulate and reward each 
>other. "National character" might be a first crude approximation at 
>identifying such hypermind entities, and scientific paradigms and 
>warrior faiths might be two more classes.

And that doesn't count the information that replicates in computer space.

Talk about THE SPIKE, I seriously doubt physical state humans will be 
here by the end of the century.


>Just musing...
>Damien Broderick
>extropy-chat mailing list
>extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org

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