Have human beings "broken" evolution?

This is a discussion on Have human beings "broken" evolution? within the A Brief History of Cprogramming.com forums, part of the Community Boards category; dude what the ........?... did i even REMOTELY imply anything like that? lemmie explain! i was pointing out how it ...

  1. #16
    Has a Masters in B.S.
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    2,267
    dude what the ........?... did i even REMOTELY imply anything like that? lemmie explain!

    i was pointing out how it seems most evolutionist seem to believe there is a right way for it[evolution] to happen? and its actually kinda "refreshing" to see somebody who believes what they call "darwinian evolution", while also believing what you said, there is no technically right way things should be...

    hence the point that our technological advancements are 100% in-tune with evolutionary developemnet! being they help us survive and dominate... and should theoretically "improve" our "genetic crop".


    seriously... stop being such an ...............

    Edit: just because i've argued against it in the past, and dont believe in it... dont mean .........
    Last edited by no-one; 08-08-2005 at 10:57 AM.
    ADVISORY: This users posts are rated CP-MA, for Mature Audiences only.

  2. #17
    Mayor of Awesometown Govtcheez's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    MI
    Posts
    8,825
    Sorry, I took it the wrong way. I meant to put that disclaimer at the top, anyway

    It's still kind of offtopic, but it's my understanding that the genes that get passed on the most become most common. "The fittest" genes are usually the ones that get passed on, because they're more likely to survive, better suited for the environment, more attractive, etc. That doesn't necessarily mean there's some right way to happen, it's just what happens most frequently.

    Again, sorry.

  3. #18
    Has a Masters in B.S.
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    2,267
    actually thinking about it, i cant say i blame you... i used to be and still am a bit of a dick...

    >
    It's still kind of offtopic, but it's my understanding that the genes that get passed on the most become most common. "The fittest" genes are usually the ones that get passed on, because they're more likely to survive, better suited for the environment, more attractive, etc. That doesn't necessarily mean there's some right way to happen, it's just what happens most frequently.
    <

    ok, to my understanding(which is SMALL) of genetic's its really not a pick of the fittest, there are a LOT of deformities(mutations) that are dominant genes, being things like polydactalism, curly hair(haha), bad eyesight, albinoism.. and other not seeminly bad things including freckles, baldness, hairline... etc... are all dominant genes... being if you only have one gene of that trait... your still screwed... and generally if the parent only has one dominant gene of the pair, then there's a 50/50 chance you get the dominant one...

    so... my understanding is "natural" natural selection happens after the semi-"random" genetics... when you die because of your ........ty genes... then leading to the point that we are spoiling our gene pool by keeping the bad genes alive through advanced medicine... ehhhhhh.... this subject is just SCREAMING loooong discussion...

    but then again... im talking out of my ass, cause my understanding of it is slim.

    edit:... added some ...........

    edit: off topic but, this thinking is what spurred people like the NAZI's being they killed people they thought were genetically inferiour... to prevent "soiling" of the gene pool...
    edit: or that was their excuse anyway...
    Last edited by no-one; 08-08-2005 at 12:48 PM.
    ADVISORY: This users posts are rated CP-MA, for Mature Audiences only.

  4. #19
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,595
    I believe this is a delicate balance. Technology has helped more people live longer--better public health measures, better nutrition, better protection from routine dangers due to exposure to predators and risks associated with a variety of environmental risks, treatments for any number of acute/potentially life threatening illnesses, changes in social attitudes, etc. I don't think there is any question that more of us as a total percent of all of us born survive to reproduce than ever in history. This means there are more genes (given a standard rate of mutations arising spontaneously within a given population, and that may not hold true with the thinning of the ozone layer) in a bigger variety than ever to share. However, that also means we are putting more pressure on the systems that support us. Habitat destruction in the tropical rain forests and sub-saharan Africa as well as the awesome potential of nuclear catastrophy clearly demonstrate that we can decrease our numbers as a species by adversely affecting our environment, even if we can "compensate", as a species, for many of these pressures, at the moment.

    I think a complementary question to that posed is: are we putting ourselves at significant risk as a population, if not a species, by our activities as a species; (though this topic has been more widely explored in a variety of media than the one posed originally on this thread).
    You're only born perfect.

  5. #20
    The Defective GRAPE Lurker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Posts
    949
    I think what'll happen in the future is much more racial blending. Many distinguishing characteristics, especially in the US, will come together. We'll become much more resistant to disease, obviously, and possibly some of our attributes will change due to that. If we survive long enough, a new era of evolution will come along when we live on other planets. 3 generations may even be enough to provide us with a new race (although still very similar to us) if we settle on Mars, and the people there don't leave. It's all speculation, but that's the fun part .
    Do not make direct eye contact with me.

  6. #21
    I am me, who else?
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    250
    Well there is still some natural selection if you think about it. Was there ebola or AIDS back in the earlier years. I believe firmly that mother nature has built in stopgaps to stop us from completely overpopulating. Eventually we would die out should the populations of everything else disappear. We all depend on the planet for air (from trees/oceans), food (from animals and plants), and of course our rather small source of fresh water on the planet.

    I think there are a lot of triggers in the world which start to "flip" should anything get radically out of balance. True we can circumvent some, but there is no known cure for AIDS, ebola, or other diseases which strike. They are there for a reason, to mold and shape populations. That is my own take though.

    Personally I find it silly that many people hold on to certain prejudicies without rethinking them every so often. But I am strange that way.

  7. #22
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    I was pointing out how it seems most evolutionist seem to believe there is a right way for it[evolution] to happen?
    They don't think that. Most evolutionary biologists think if we could turn back the clock and start life again then fastward organisms of today would look very different the second time round. Now just how different is a very interesting question, unfortunately, rather difficult to answer.

    Medicine certainly changes the ball park for evolution, i wouldn't say it has stopped it, medicine is not perfect (nor will it be for the forseeable future) further reproductive fitness is more than being kept alive, so i think that there is currently and will remain a selective pressure on homo sapiens. However evolution still seems to me essentialy redundent in our case because we are changing our lives through technology far far FAR faster than anything evolution can ever do.

    As to why Darwinian selection might be viewed as "bad" well for a start its amoral as a process, its blind to suffering and pain, a millimeter of adaptation is bought at the expensive of a billion lives. "Nature is red in tooth and claw" etc etc.

    Additionally adaptation does not equal improvement or advancement, atleast not in the way we usually use those words, it simply means more likely to pass on ones genes, so evolution ceasing to be much of a factor is not necessarily a bad thing even disregarding the ethics of the process, evolution could _in princple_ lead us towards a future humanity who's characteristics we might view as unfavourable (for example making us more violent and antisocial).
    Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem

  8. #23

    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,041
    I'm afraid I don't have a lot more to add than the question. With new breakthroughs in medicine coming all the time, we're ensuring that more and more people can and will pass on their genes. This effectively ends natural selection for humans, doesn't it?
    I see an evolved species as one that is most likely to survive, and when a species has a very high survival rate it introduces all kinds of different genetics, increasing the chances of survival against a wider spectrum of antagonists...therefore I see evolution as speeding up instead of slowing down (for the humans*).




    *Yes, for the humans, those crazy mother ........ers.

    But ultimately evolution is one of those silly ideas invented by a group of elitist Liberals that hate America (they also tried to convince us that we went to the moon)...crazy mother ........ers!
    Last edited by BobMcGee123; 08-08-2005 at 06:31 PM.
    I'm not immature, I'm refined in the opposite direction.

  9. #24
    Toaster Zach L.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    2,686
    Clyde! You're still around!


    At the risk of restating what others appear to have already said (if I interpret them correctly), so long as there is an environment, we will continue to adapt to it. I can forsee the rate of genetic drift slowing (perhaps significantly), but even as we alter our environment to suit us, we are not doing so at the exclusion of other "forms" (for lack of a better term) of humans that are equally suited to the environment we have created as we are now (of course, I am refering to changes significantly different from current differences amidst the population).
    The word rap as it applies to music is the result of a peculiar phonological rule which has stripped the word of its initial voiceless velar stop.

  10. #25
    train spotter
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    near a computer
    Posts
    3,856
    >>However evolution still seems to me essentialy redundent in our case because we are changing our lives through technology far far FAR faster than anything evolution can ever do.

    I think that evolution is alive and well.

    Now the major force in evolution is technology, will it force us to adapt to other planets?


    Say I genetically engineer a new version of humans that is 'stronger' or 'fitter', from a Darwinian evolution point of view.

    Is my new human contributing to evolution or not?

    I think it would be as it is a result of a humans interaction with their environment.
    "Man alone suffers so excruciatingly in the world that he was compelled to invent laughter."
    Friedrich Nietzsche

    "I spent a lot of my money on booze, birds and fast cars......the rest I squandered."
    George Best

    "If you are going through hell....keep going."
    Winston Churchill

  11. #26
    The Earth is not flat. Clyde's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Posts
    1,420
    Say I genetically engineer a new version of humans that is 'stronger' or 'fitter', from a Darwinian evolution point of view.

    Is my new human contributing to evolution or not?
    Well, i'm not entirely convinced you can call that evolution, not in the Darwinian sense. Darwinian evolution normally refers to the proces of mutation and selection, leading to a gradual change in phenotype. That process takes vast quantities of time which is why i see it as fairly irrelevent given technological and corresponding social changes occur on the scale of decades not millenia.

    You're example of genetic engineering whilst a reasonable scenario does not, I think, equate to "evolution" in the darwinian sense.

    Several reasons come to mind:

    1 The change in genotype is not due to mutation.

    2 The resulting change in phenotype will be geared towards what we see as desireable, the general "desire" to change ourselves through genetic modifcation could be viewed in a very similar way to the "selective pressure" of Darwinian evolution, however it is not the same. Darwinian selective pressure is SOLEY aimed at increasing reproductive fitness, whereas what people might like to do to their own/their offsprings genotype is bound by nothing more than human whim (though the two may well coincide they are not constrained to).

    3 There is a large amount of feedback in the system, because we are doing the genetic modication (vs. random mutation) the entire process becomes highly self reffering, the genes we choose for our offspring will effect (in a non-trivial way) the genes they choose for their offspring. In biological evolution this is not the case, broadly speaking the process of mutation is fixed.

    Clyde! You're still around!
    Hello .
    Entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem

  12. #27
    the hat of redundancy hat nvoigt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Hannover, Germany
    Posts
    3,139
    If you make it idiot proof, the universe will create a better idiot.

    We will never be completely immune to diseases. We will never be immune to overpopulation and resulting disasters. We will never be immune to greed and resulting conflicts.

    We will never break evolution, we are part of it. There is nothing that would stop evolution. If we could stop it, stopping it would be an evolution in itself and surely not the last one.
    hth
    -nv

    She was so Blonde, she spent 20 minutes looking at the orange juice can because it said "Concentrate."

    When in doubt, read the FAQ.
    Then ask a smart question.

  13. #28
    train spotter
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    near a computer
    Posts
    3,856
    If a genetically engineered plant 'escapes' and becomes, through 'normal' natural selection, the dominant variant of its species, is that evolution?


    >>That process takes vast quantities of time which is why i see it as fairly irrelevent given technological and corresponding social changes occur on the scale of decades not millenia.

    The 'Culex molestus' form of mosquito found in the London Underground railway system took a lot less time to evolve, only a hundred years or so. Its evolution was driven by the available diet and the conditions (chemicals ect).


    Though this is a long time for an insect...
    "Man alone suffers so excruciatingly in the world that he was compelled to invent laughter."
    Friedrich Nietzsche

    "I spent a lot of my money on booze, birds and fast cars......the rest I squandered."
    George Best

    "If you are going through hell....keep going."
    Winston Churchill

  14. #29
    Toaster Zach L.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    2,686
    >> Though this is a long time for an insect... <<
    Correct. It is more to do with generations of a given animal.

    From this site, it states that a female mosquito generally lives 3-100 days, and a male 10-20 days. (I don't know the specifics of the species you mentioned.) Doing some rough calculations from the numbers on the website, 100 years is going to be something like 1500+ generations... which is fairly significant.

    As to the escaped plant. No, it would not be evolution, it would, however, be natural selection. It's equivalent to species of plants/animals being introduced to an area that it is non-native to, and either eliminating or assimilating (depending on the details) a competing native species.
    The word rap as it applies to music is the result of a peculiar phonological rule which has stripped the word of its initial voiceless velar stop.

  15. #30
    Epo
    Epo is offline
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Posts
    361
    I think that evolution and natural selection are linked. (Should natural selection be broken, so is evolution).

    I believe we've broken natural selection. Imagine how tough our species would be if hospitals didn't exist. (Or we'd be extinct).

    Hoping extinction wouldn't set in: survival of the fittest/smartest would. If somebody falls off a ladder because they didn't secure it properly, well, it would be a lesson for everyone else and we'd get smarter/learn how to do things properly. The strong would pick on the weak, and slowly the weak would die off. Too generous? Well the greedy people will eventually take everything you own, and you will die off. I know it's sensitive to some people, so I'll only mention it quickly, but should someone suffer from mental health problems, they would die off too.

    What you'll have left is the smart and strong leading the smart and strong. There's your natural selection (or one path of it anyways; read my note at the bottom).

    However, we have hospitals, medications, urgent care clinics, etc. to care for the weaker and dumber members of our species (along with our emotions such as compassion, generosity, and other bonds). And so, they stick around a lot longer than they "should" (with reference to natural selection).

    NOTE: Their are numerous paths this can branch off into. A really smart person could develop something to render strength useless (I.e. a fantastic impenetrable bubble). Or, physical strength could be the mere deciding factor. But I've chosen a mix of the two, equally developed (because without intelligence, it doesn't matter if you can lift a house, and without physical strength, it doesn't matter how smart you are if you can't lift your ray gun). As I said, this is just one path.

    Now, evolution has to do with how the different mutations of genes conquer eachother (I don't think a natural/man-induced change is relevant here...). If there are two people, all other things equal, and one has the "smart" gene, while the other has a "dumb" gene, well, evolution will be when the smart gene continues to live while the dumb gene dies off.

    But it's more complicated than that since "all other things" are never equal. One person may be smarter with straight hair, but the other may be more able-bodied with curly hair. Who's to say which gene (intelligence, strength, or hair) is responsible when one of those people die and another continues living? (Not to mention the environment in which they live).

    You'd have to re-create the same scenario and test it thousands of times. But no two people are completely alike, so each time the results are a bit skewed. And, to add to this, should curly haired people be the "weak" link, it's not very apparent, because we reproduce them fast enough that we never really see the shortage. And since we reproduce the flaws, we've halted evolution as well. Natural selection can't do its thing, so those flawed genes will hang around.

    So, with the halt of natural selection due to hospitals (increasing life expectancy past what it naturally should be), and the reproduction of flaws, we've also halted evolution.

    Should only people with genes that improve "life expectancy" (again, referring to natural selection standards) mate, excluding all others, without compassion to help them, then I'd say evolution would be back on track. But, that's not the case.

    It's a bit of a read, and I've got a lot more to say, so I've tried to throw out the key points I've got and hope you can fill in the blanks/give it a thought. And of course, this is only one way to look at it.
    Pentium 4 - 2.0GHz, 512MB RAM
    NVIDIA GeForce4 MX 440
    WinXP
    Visual Studio .Net 2003
    DX9 October 2004 Update (R.I.P. VC++ 6.0 Compatability)

Page 2 of 3 FirstFirst 123 LastLast
Popular pages Recent additions subscribe to a feed

Similar Threads

  1. Alice....
    By Lurker in forum A Brief History of Cprogramming.com
    Replies: 16
    Last Post: 06-20-2005, 02:51 PM
  2. Mouse to have human brain
    By nickname_changed in forum A Brief History of Cprogramming.com
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 03-10-2005, 04:39 PM
  3. Do constructors get inherited?
    By Shadow12345 in forum C++ Programming
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 08-21-2002, 11:41 AM
  4. middle east again...
    By dbaryl in forum A Brief History of Cprogramming.com
    Replies: 313
    Last Post: 05-26-2002, 03:43 AM

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21