Mind Matters Natural and Artificial Intelligence News and Analysis

TagNeanderthal cooking

Neural pathways in a brain forming intricate patterns, metaphorically showing the connections within the human mind and how ideas link and spark

The Human Mind Has No History

There is no good reason to assume that human intelligence evolved from mud to mind via a long slow history

Possibly the most frustrating science discipline ever envisioned is the effort to trace the evolution of human consciousness. Apparently, we start with the flatworm’s aversion to pain and end up with Chaitin’s unknowable number. That is a large gap. Of course, it doesn’t work. Evolution might predict smarter chimpanzees (or dumber ones, depending) but it does not predict a world of ideas, of which any given theory of evolution is itself merely one of the many ideas. So what do claims like “Theories of consciousness must be firmly rooted in evolutionary biology” even mean? The neuroscience of theories of consciousness is currently degenerating into chaos. Briefly, the leading theory has been trashed as “pseudoscience.” Tellingly, so far as one can Read More ›

Tribe of Prehistoric Hunter-Gatherers Wearing Animal Skins Stand Around Bonfire Outside of Cave at Night. Portrait of Neanderthal / Homo Sapiens Family Doing Pagan Religion Ritual Near Fire

Our Ancestors Were Cooking Much Earlier Than Thought

The more we learn about early humans, the more sophisticated we find their culture to be

Recent findings suggest that some things we take for granted in human civilizations are much older than thought. Now, these findings are provisional but they are worth looking at: The owl stones from 5,500 and 4,750 years ago may be children’s art: But new research suggests the palm-sized plaques decorated in geometric patterns and with two engraved circles at the top might be the work of children. Numbering in the thousands and made from slate, the owl-like objects – previously dated the stone objects to be between 5,500 and 4,750 years old – may be “the archaeological trace of playful and learning activities carried out by youngsters,” according to the team of Spanish researchers behind the new study… They suggest Read More ›