Welcome to
Science a GoGo's
Discussion Forums
Please keep your postings on-topic or they will be moved to a galaxy far, far away.
Your use of this forum indicates your agreement to our terms of use.
So that we remain spam-free, please note that all posts by new users are moderated.


The Forums
General Science Talk        Not-Quite-Science        Climate Change Discussion        Physics Forum        Science Fiction

Who's Online Now
0 members (), 352 guests, and 0 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Posts
Top Posters(30 Days)
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 1 of 3 1 2 3
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
SOME of the most basic organisms are smarter than we thought. Rather than moving about randomly, amoebas and plankton employ sophisticated strategies to look for food and might travel in a way that optimises their foraging. Biophysicists have long tried to explain how creatures of all sizes search for food. However, single-celled organisms such as bacteria seem to move in no particular direction in their search. To investigate, Liang Li and Edward Cox at Princeton University studied the movements of amoebas (Dictyostelium) in a Petri dish, recording the paths travelled by 12 amoebas, including every turn and movement straight ahead, for 8 to 10 hours per amoeba. Immediately after an amoeba turned right, it was twice as likely to turn left as right again, and vice versa, they told a meeting of the American Physical Society meeting in Denver, Colorado, last week. This suggests that the cells have a rudimentary memory, being able to remember the last direction they had just turned in, says Robert Austin, a biophysicist at Princeton who was not involved in the study. For the full story Click Here . So now I can truly say that I know people who aren't as smart as an amoeba.


DA Morgan
.
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
T
Megastar
Offline
Megastar
T
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
From the article:

"For the amoeba, the pay-off is that it avoids travelling in circles".

Now DA. Most of go round in circles most of the time. Therefore most of us are not as smart as the average amoeba.

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Article says: Such memories might be laid down because of the way the cell moves. To turn, an amoeba extends part of its body in the preferred direction, which creates a scar made of protein down that side of the cell. The scar might make the cell temporarily more likely to move in the opposite direction. For the amoeba, the pay-off is that it avoids travelling in circles and hence can search a larger area.

the movements some want to describe as thinking can be explained by instinct or anatomy, but also i will quote my zoology professor:
We torture them with all kinds of experiments becouse they cant scream or say anything. And if they do, they're too small for us to hear them.


BTW, good point terry.

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
quantum wrote:
"the movements some want to describe as thinking can be explained by instinct or anatomy"

I agree. But I would also, at the same time, want to give pause to consider whether much of what we call thinking is the same.

I'd be willing to bet a sentient amoeba would answer that it thought it through carefully and decided go to the other way because it was better.


DA Morgan
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
thue. concept of mind, opinion, or should i say thought is individual.
honestly, i'm not sure what to think about amoeba clever movements. i attempt to be open minded and consider any question as possible so i'm not rejecting the idea that amoeba can think. actually, i would say that i agree with that! but also that kind of questions bother me: do plants think? do we constantly eat living, thinking beings that are not in ability to run for their lifes? (becouse it is proven that plants grow better if you play them music, talk to them...)
well...i guess that's the cyclus of life...nothing we can do about it. for now

Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
T
Megastar
Offline
Megastar
T
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
Quantum. Yes, even vegetarians continue living by destroying living things.

Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
W
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
W
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
There was a good MythBusters episode where they tested the myth of plants thriving when talked to or given music to "listen to". They also did one on the myth that plants have some ESP ability.

In both cases, it came up resoundingly negative.

My guess is that plants you talk to thrive because you (the gardener) feel a stronger connection to them and tend to take better care for them because they are such good listeners. (They almost never interrupt, and when they do, it's time to run far away.)

However, plants are most certainly alive. Their chromosomes have the same imperative as ours t reproduce, and yet we kill them and eat them - usually in the prime of their lives.

So save the flowers and eat a cow! wink

Actually, if you want something REALLY disturbing, read this and then (after you finish the article) read this and watch the video. (Warning: That second link is really quite disturbing. The first one is incredibly interesting and non-disturbing, but the knowledge gained from it makes the second one worse. You have been warned. There's nothing actually offensive, but it's not for the weak of heart.)

And that's just a mollusk. Imagine what we put livestock through.

We are a cruel species, but not always do we realize what we are about.


w

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
Wayne wrote:
"We are a cruel species, but not always do we realize what we are about."

Of course we don't. No more than the drunken morons in singles bars realizes they look like a complete idiot "be cool."

But I think one must be careful about over-analysis.

We are just omnivores. We, at least, try to do better than the Bengal Tiger and the Weasel.


DA Morgan
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
W
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
W
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
I'm a steak eater. I even love veal. Give me some nice venison and you'll make me a happy man. Who doesn't love lamb? I even had some buffalo just last week. (Really!)

While our livestock admittedly usually lives in awful conditions, they are rarely aware that they are about to die and they are never aware that they only exist to be put on somebody's plate for dinner. Even if they saw it happening, they'd be unlikely to grasp the concept.

But the idea of putting a creature on your plate, alive, who has been demonstrated to have emotional response and possibly even sentience, and cut it's legs off and eat them one by one while it sits watching you do it - that's more than omnivorous. That's an abomination. The thing panics and turns colors and tries to escape, but the diner just cuts off another leg and makes the creature watch the leg be devoured.

The Bengal tiger and the weasel don't have the capacity to know that they are terrifying their prey. Humans do this and laugh about it and call it a delicacy.

It reminds of Monkey Brains. There's another dish served inhumanly. They put the poor creature's head in a clamp and remove it's skull cap and eat it's brain while it struggles under the specially-built table. That's not omnivorous - that's sick. As far as I know, nobody does this anymore - but it wasn't until very recent times that the practice faded. And maybe some people still do it. If so, I hope they all get Crutzfeld-Jacob's disease. That's not a terribly Christian thought, but I never professed to be perfect.

w


Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
Wayne wrote:
"The Bengal tiger and the weasel don't have the capacity to know that they are terrifying their prey. Humans do this and laugh about it and call it a delicacy."

In this you are correct. I wasn't making reference to this indefensible immorality play.


DA Morgan
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
humans show more inhumanity then all of the other species.
sick but true!!
i often cought myself in trying not to think about monstrosities humans do, but things like Wayne mentioned always remind me how disgusting we are.
i am a vegetarian. i know that didn't stop me from killing things, but i feel a little bit better becouse i think it is less damaging to eat a cabage then a cow. besides, it is not the killing it self that bothers me howmuch the attitude, disrespect and torture towards a living being.

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
No question but that you are correct. Though it does beg the question of whether the phrase "inhumane" is an oxymoron.

It seems that "humane" means not acting like most humans

And "inhumane" means acting like just about all humans.


DA Morgan
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
W
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
W
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
Our bodies are adapted to be omnivores. If that wasn't true then we wouldn't have incisors and canines - teeth crafted for the express purpose of tearing meat. If we were evolved as herbivores, we'd have mouths with nothing but molars. If we were carnivores, the rest of our teeth would be sharp. No - we are omnivores, and have been for as long as we have walked the Earth as humans.

There's nothing wrong with us killing animals for food, anymore than there is something wrong with a cheetah doing the same thing.

However, where we stumble is in our methods. We have the capacity to empathize with our prey. That would be a major disadvantage to most any omnivore or carnivore - can you imagine if a cheetah could feel sorry for its food? There'd be a lot of starving cheetahs. With the ability to empathize comes the responsibility to minimize suffering. (Perhaps that's just an opinion, but I maintain that anybody who doesn't share it to at least some degree is probably an insufferable jerk.)

Major advancements have been made in humane slaughtering techniques with an emphasis of reducing stress of the animals. Dying the way a cow does in a slaughterhouse is a lot less stressful than the way a zebra dies on the Serengeti when a lion needs a snack. Yet, even with all the attention placed on trying to make these animals suffer as little as possible, there are still restaurants that serve food that is alive and aware that it is being devoured.

I have no compunction about eating meat. But if I ever see anybody eating live octopus (or monkey brain, for that matter), I'll be hard pressed to not walk over and punch them in the head.

w

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
now Wayne, you can't tell me that a cow, grew up in a farm, in a small space, rarely left out, with hundreds of cows surrounding her, eating all kind of stuff (everything but things she really should - heard about cows eating cows?), had a less stresful life than a zebra!
i'm not saying we shouldn't eat meat - i'm saying that we should treat the living beings better then we do!

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
Wayne wrote:
"We have the capacity to empathize with our prey. That would be a major disadvantage to most any omnivore or carnivore - can you imagine if a cheetah could feel sorry for its food?"

You assume facts not in evidence. I see no reason why a cheetah could not experience the same emotion as a human (not that I am saying they do) and still decide that it must eat to survive.

We day murder is wrong and yet sanction killing every day of the year: war, police, etc.

Perhaps an empathetic cheetah would just be swift to the kill and make sure its bite was clean and on the mark. Which is precisely what they do.

Again, I am not saying they have these emotions, but rather that if they did I don't see it leading to anything different than what we actually observe in the wild.


DA Morgan
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
W
Senior Member
Offline
Senior Member
W
Joined: Feb 2007
Posts: 120
I think your both just looking to disagree with somebody regardless of if you agree with them or not.

Quantum: I already mentioned that we've made major advancements in our treatment of cattle. Yes, we have a long way to go. But it has nothing to do with the point: No matter how well we treat one animal, there are others that we needlessly torture because it's fun and tasty. The cheetah sometimes plays with it's food - it doesn't know better. We do, but we do it anyway.

DA: Same thing. You know that my point has nothing to do with empathetic cheetahs and everything to do with cruelty inflicted by man. I don't believe you think it's possible for a cheetah to be intentionally cruel to its food.

Argument for the sake of enlightened discussion is one thing, but argument for the sake of argument gets tiresome.

w

w

Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
D
Megastar
OP Offline
Megastar
D
Joined: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,136
Agreed.


DA Morgan
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
T
Megastar
Offline
Megastar
T
Joined: Aug 2006
Posts: 1,031
I agree totally with Wayne: "Our bodies are adapted to be omnivores." Killing animals in a slaughterhouse is probably no more traumatic for them than being speared slowly to death as no doubt happened frequently during our evolution.

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
terry, put aside the killing and the trauma. during the evolution the hunter would kill the animal then use it for food, for clothing etc. today millions of (per example) cows are being slaughtered (for the same reason) but also millions of them aren't being used for those reasons becouse they slaughter more cows then needed. so what do they do? lot of unethical things like feeding other cows with those (it was all over the news few years ago).
yes, we are omnivores. again, i'm not saying that we are not supposed to eat meat.
i just feel better not eating meat. my conscience is calmer.

Wayne:I already mentioned that we've made major advancements in our treatment of cattle.

well, i didn't really noticed...

Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Q
Member
Offline
Member
Q
Joined: Mar 2007
Posts: 51
Post deleted by Amaranth Rose II

Page 1 of 3 1 2 3

Link Copied to Clipboard
Newest Members
debbieevans, bkhj, jackk, Johnmattison, RacerGT
865 Registered Users
Sponsor

Science a GoGo's Home Page | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Contact UsokW
Features | News | Books | Physics | Space | Climate Change | Health | Technology | Natural World

Copyright © 1998 - 2016 Science a GoGo and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5