The anthropologist is in....

Postby littleflower » Sun Apr 26, 2009 9:08 pm

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Postby Simon of the Playa » Tue Apr 28, 2009 5:21 am

"this is not some silly Ladies tea party, it is a "Him" event. A Men Gala."
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men gala

Postby Da Mule » Tue Apr 28, 2009 6:11 am

Huh?

Well then why did you bring tea sandwiches? Who would have ever thought that wonder bread, mayonnaise and cucumbers could be so good? Had Tom Robbins only thought of cucumbers, villa incognito would have been more attractive.

And hey, who wants to hang out with a bunch of men anyway? You out to keep promises now, are you?

I, myself am thinking of organizing a million mule march: Stand in the Crap: A Sacred Ass-embly.
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Re: twins and heritability

Postby Ugly Dougly » Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:37 am

[quote="Countess"]
We ought to think of genes like recipes (rather than blueprints). If we were looking at a cake, would you ask the baker: “What shapes this cake more -- the recipe or the ingredients?â€
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Tue Apr 28, 2009 4:23 pm

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did someone say "twins"?
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Postby ygmir » Tue Apr 28, 2009 9:44 pm

is that Joseph (Yosef)? How come his eyes aren't blue?.........
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Thu Apr 30, 2009 7:30 am

but of course...i was wondering when he would resurface since his role in the science of Eugenics / Genetics is so profound and yet so awful.


none other than the God-Father of genetics, The Creator of Cloning, the Twin-Meister himself...


Jo-Jo Mengele.
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Boyd and Silk

Postby Countess » Fri May 08, 2009 12:18 pm

Sorry it has been a while since I have posted anything. I have been grading midterms.

I wanted to cite my source. This is the textbook we are using for the class I am teaching. Below is a link to the publisher's site. You can get one chapter on the Evolution of Cooperation for free. You can also purchase an ebook for half the price of the paperback copy.

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http://www.wwnorton.com/college/titles/anthro/evolve5/
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Fri May 08, 2009 12:51 pm

How about those Hobbits?

How did they get to that island on the other side of the Wallace line if they were some sort of primitive H. erectus?
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Revolution!: Flowers, Fruit and Nectar

Postby Countess » Fri May 08, 2009 1:44 pm

This is a story of coevolution....

During the Mesozoic era (the latter years of the dinosaurs) a revolutionary change occured in the plant world that created new ecological niches. Angiosperms evolved. These are plants with showy flowers, sugary nectars, and nutritious, easily digestible fruits. These adaptations evolved to attract pollinators to facilitate sexual reproduction and animals that could disperse their seeds. Birds, insects, and mammals evolved to take advantages of these new ecological niches. These kinds of animals become more diverse and successful as time passed.

I think this is the most fascinating thing I learned while teaching this course. We know that there was a time before fruit and flowers, when plants had only traits that attempted to thwart hungry animals -- thorns, toxins and so forth -- to keep them from eating their precious leaves. After the angiosperms evolved, plants displayed traits that actually attracted the animals to them. The plants now take advantage of the animals' gift of mobility and the animals now take advantage of the plants' gift of nutrition. The plants and animals coevolved. It was revolutionary and it lead directly to the proliferation of mammals that we see in the world today.
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Postby ygmir » Fri May 08, 2009 1:50 pm

seems I could adapt your post to use for "date" material...........
might get her hot and all............

"angiosperms, sugary nectars, pollinators, and taking advantage of mobility and eating their fruits".

hhhhhmmmmmmm..........
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Sat May 09, 2009 7:06 am

could you explain pheromone attraction, and is it the basis for mating selection and hence offspring coding?

does this natural scent lure work to produce good relationships and /or vibrant progeny or does it make for good sex but not necessarily a good and / or monogamous union.

why do we seek out those we sub-consciously perceive to "smell right" and avoid those that dont?

i have personally found that cops smell funny, but thats an aside, and has no basis in scientific proof. I do know that the human sense of smell is very powerful and effects us in many ways, behavioral and otherwise.

Could the fairly recent development of "Anti-scent" chemicals and devices confused our natural selection process and blurred the mind into thinking we've made the right choice about someone when actually it was estee lauder? Should we be sniffing each others pits before making a commitment?

i need to nose.
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Smelly apes

Postby Countess » Sat May 09, 2009 11:03 am

Simon of the Playa wrote:why do we seek out those we sub-consciously perceive to "smell right" and avoid those that dont?


We are actually very stinky apes. Other animals have a stronger sense of smell, but since we don't have this skill, we produce a lot of odor so that we can communicate information through olfaction.

One of the things that we communicate about ourselves is referred to as our major histocompatibility complex (MHC) . Products of our MHC are involved in immune recognition -- the way that our bodies recognize what is and is not a part of ourselves. Cells in our bodies produce a kind of password that says -- hey this is a part of me. When the password is not present, the body will assume that the cell is an unwanted invader and will attempt to kill it. When we mate, we our offspring get a new password based on the parent's two MHC profiles. Novel passwords are better than old passwords. The more dissimilar the parent's MHCs from one another, the better for the offspring -- who will be better protected from invading pathogens who are not familiar with this novel password. If you mate with someone with a very similar MHC profile as yourself, then your offspring with be at a disadvantage.

We learn about the ways that humans are detecting MHC signals through smelly T-shirt experiments. In these smelly T-shirt studies men and women select the shirts that smell the best (or the least offensive). It turns out that women prefer the smell of shirts worn by men who have most different MHC profiles than themselves. However, when they are pregnant or on birth control pills (which mimics the hormones of pregnancy), they prefer the smell of men who are most similar to themselves. Perhaps this is because women are adapted to spend time with their kin while pregnant, and spend time looking for mates with novel phenotypes when not pregnant. For this reason, I suggest that women beware of the effects of birth control pills on your choice of mate! Try a non-hormonal method of birth control before getting too serious.
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Re: Smelly apes

Postby thisisthatwhichis » Sun May 10, 2009 7:57 am

Countess wrote:We are actually very stinky apes. Other animals have a stronger sense of smell, but since we don't have this skill, we produce a lot of odor so that we can communicate information through olfaction.



Especially after a week on the Playa........ 8)
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Sun May 10, 2009 10:48 am

thank you, that explains alot.

now i know why ryan o'neal can make farrah moan.
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Postby Bob » Sun May 10, 2009 4:47 pm

Explains a lot of things.

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Amazing desert structures & stuff: http://sites.google.com/site/potatotrap/

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Postby theCryptofishist » Sun May 10, 2009 9:30 pm

That's a Floating World aftershave.

This year it's Australiapithicus.
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Mon May 11, 2009 10:49 am

I never heard a Pharoah moan. But I smelled one.

They say that once you have smelled someone's pheromones, you have already decided on whether to mate with them, regardless of all of your rationalizations.
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Postby Finnegan » Sun May 24, 2009 8:13 pm

Are we really that hard-wired? I guess I could see that might be the case. The hindbrain knows best, after all.
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Postby gyre » Sun May 24, 2009 10:08 pm

Any thoughts on the theory of gene alteration by stress during childhood, different ages applying to girls and boys?
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Postby Ugly Dougly » Mon May 25, 2009 10:05 am

Finnegan wrote:Are we really that hard-wired? I guess I could see that might be the case. The hindbrain knows best, after all.


You, sir, are basically a gibbon. And I mean that in the best possible way.
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Postby Finnegan » Tue May 26, 2009 4:22 pm

Ook ook!
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Geologist here to muddy the water

Postby Igneouss » Thu May 28, 2009 12:26 pm

With all respect to antropologists...
Human evolution is interesting but it is also but a tiny bit of the evolutionary puzzle.

To answer/clarify a few issues:

ugly Dougly: you went extinct. Genetic evidence is fairly compelling. Sorry to be the one to inform you.

Evolution is an odd process. It does not occur in a systematic way which causes fits when trying to explain the process. Much miss-information circulates.

Once in a great while a trait or characteristic that provides a distinct survival advantage will arrise in a species. The rate that these changes occur seems to vary widely for different species. Some have changed hardly at all over 100 million years. Others see large changes over 100 thousand-ish year intervals multiple times.

Lots of changes occur. Most fail to 'take hold' (lack a survival advantage). Some hang around and become 'characteristics' that may or may not fade out with time or even subsequently change again. Physical, mental, soft or hard parts can be affected. Physical antropologists have been obsessed with brian size for like 100 years. I have no doubt that they regularly write papers titled 'Does size matter?'

One of the big confusions for layfolks is the difference between 'species' and 'sub species'. Darwin's finches are likely sub spcies. They have differing physical characteristics but can viably interbreed. Think 'dog breeds' for a simple example.

When an viable change manifests it tends to happen very quickly. Changes happen very sudenly in the fossil record. The unfortunate thing for Darwin was that many of the animals he studied carried selective changes that were caused by environment (dogs are selectively controled by humans as opposed to environment - for example). These types of changes are gradual and additive. Major evolutionary changes seems to take hold suddenly and without much warning. Species of trilobites, for example, do not slowly morph from one to another. Rather, new species suddenly appear in the fossil record. Sudden changes tend to be followed by longer periods of stability. The rate of change and the length of stable periods is not predictable.

This process is called punctuated equilibrium. (Read Gould - he's a God - may his star burn bright).

There are a few examples of gradual change in the fossil record but they are rare compared to evidence of punctuation.

The fossil record shows times when species were popping up fast (called radiations) and times when things were boring and times when mass extinctions occured. Average rates of speciation and extinction can be calculated but are rather fuzzy. Mostly because they do not occur at even rates. They are 'lumpy' (radiations and mass extinctions). Read Raup and Stanley - if I remember correctly.

Much confusion is caused by anthropologists and biologists that love to call every small variation a new species (splitters). The opposite are 'lumpers' that tend to hold that many varied critters are actually members of the same species. Common examples include the discovery that numbers of 'species' are actually various growth stages of the same animal. This is a hitoric problem with trilobite classification. Another instructive example (again) is dogs. Know that Chihuahuas and Great Danes can viably interbreed. They are the same species. Now you realize that a great range of physical variability can exist within a species. This is probably the case with human ancestors as well. Now extend the logic to other characterisicts...

...gotta get back to work...

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Postby EB » Fri May 29, 2009 4:39 pm

Great stuff, Countess.

Any book recommendations for the lay person in re: stinky t-shirt-like studies? If not, you should consider writing one -- your examples and prose really sing and I, for one, love when this stuff is boiled down into real world scenarios (i.e. don't chose a mate while you're on hormonal birth control.)
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Re: Geologist here to muddy the water

Postby Ugly Dougly » Sat May 30, 2009 12:49 pm

Igneouss wrote:ugly Dougly: you went extinct. Genetic evidence is fairly compelling. Sorry to be the one to inform you.


I sure don't feel extinct. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
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Re: Geologist here to muddy the water

Postby Igneouss » Sat May 30, 2009 8:24 pm

Ugly Dougly wrote:
Igneouss wrote:ugly Dougly: you went extinct. Genetic evidence is fairly compelling. Sorry to be the one to inform you.


I sure don't feel extinct. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.


Fancy words from Mr 'Brow Ridge'

:)
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07 $1.0M
08 $1.1M
09 $0
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11 $1.2M
12 $1.2M
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Postby Da Mule » Mon Jun 01, 2009 2:34 pm

EB wrote:Great stuff, Countess.

Any book recommendations for the lay person in re: stinky t-shirt-like studies? If not, you should consider writing one -- your examples and prose really sing and I, for one, love when this stuff is boiled down into real world scenarios (i.e. don't chose a mate while you're on hormonal birth control.)


Dr. Tatiana's Sex Advice to All Creation is an interesting book about the evolutionary biology of sex. Although it did not help me figure out how I could have offspring, it does talk about these very same stinky t-shirt studies. She theorizes that because so many are on the pill when they meet a man, there have arisen more problems with infertile couples who are not infertile independently. It's not until she goes off the pill that they realize something is wrong. Apparently if a woman tries to have sex with someone who is genetically incompatible, she's more likely to miscarry. The couple is not infertile - if they try with others, they'll get pregnant, just not together.
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Mon Jun 01, 2009 4:58 pm

i think da mule has stumbled across a great idea for a "speed-dating" or matchmaking place.

"Camp Stinky T-shirt"

you leave your stinky t-shirt and your address, and sit back and wait for the nose that knows.
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Re: Geologist here to muddy the water

Postby DaddyMassive » Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:09 am

[quote="Ugly Dougly"][quote="Igneouss"]
ugly Dougly: you went extinct. Genetic evidence is fairly compelling. Sorry to be the one to inform you.
[/quote]

I sure don't feel extinct. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.[/quote]

http://www.dhamurian.org.au/anthropolog ... thal1.html

Basically, anyone with any part red hair genes had a Neanderthal great great^400 grandmother with the mental age of a 2 1/2 year old who was raped by the respective great X grandfather who happened to be an early effort at a homo sapien.
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Postby Simon of the Playa » Wed Jun 03, 2009 7:12 am

Basically, anyone with any part red hair genes had a Neanderthal great great^400 grandmother with the mental age of a 2 1/2 year old who was raped by the respective great X grandfather who happened to be an early effort at a homo sapien.




well THAT explains the Irish, now doesn't it?
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