Saturday, November 23, 2019

"Evolution Family Tree": show that high intelligence evolves independently repeatedly



\The “Evolution Family Tree from Single Cells to Modern Humans” (17 min) from Useful Charts.


The first living “cells” were probably bacteria and archaea (extremophiles – the most “alien”) and then the eukaryotes that split into “domains” -- plants, fungi, and animals.  (Bacteria and Fungi are no longer “plants”. Eukaryotes have cell nuclei.)

What gets interesting is to see how very high intelligence evolved separately several times.  Birds split off separately from reptiles (which have an amygdala) and became rather intelligent in problem solving with corvids (crows, jays, ravens). With mammals, high intelligence developed separately in elephants (which normally graze), carnivores (which have to hunt and can typically bond to humans), cetaceans (including orcas and dolphins, whose brains, which process sonar – an organic Internet – and have more cells than humans, and primates. Even some invertebrates (some mullosks) have self-cognition.
  
That’s a good reason to respect the rights of many animals. It also argues that intelligent life can evolve many ways.

There is a place in Ethiopia with no life at all (CNN). 

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