Single thoughts

G K GRAY gord at
Sun Nov 24 18:36:34 EST 1996

In article <32994E93.2F65 at>, kenneth paul collins (KPCollins at writes:
>Stephen Black wrote:
>> A further thought. Responding to the non-facetious part of this message
>> and adding my own only partly facetious, I suggest that oxygen
>> consumption be measured under different conditions:
>> e.g.  (i) while flipping one's lower lip and saying "duh" (no thought)
>>      (ii) while counting forwards by ones (small thought)
>>     (iii) while counting backwards by sevens (big thought)
>>       iv) while trying to make sense of some politician's speech (your
>>           choice-very big thought)
>> Then any differences in oxygen consumption can be attributed to
>> differences in thought size. Would any be detectable (serious question)?
>Yes. There are always detectable Geometrically-localized experience- 
>dependent high-frequency-diminution gradients. future apparatus will 
>actually be able to "read minds" :-). The apparatus will cross correlate 
>stimulus information-content with such gradients, and from such will be 
>able to "know" what the subject "knows". 
Perhaps - but no foreseeable certainty!
>From a technical perspective, 
>this's no "big deal". It's just a more-functional "polygraph". It =is= a 
>Big Deal from the perspective of Human Rights, however. Abuses in the realm 
>of this technology will wreak havoc with naive individuals' Humanity.

Whoa! Steady on - what is "Humanity"? - the word has many meanings.
Ben Franklin saw "Man" as the "Tool-Making Animal" which we now
see differently thanks to W.Koehler and Jane Goodall. What still
stands is that we are *obligate* tool-makers due to our dentition as
were earlier members of the genus Homo. This obligate status not
only set us apart from all other genera, it set us off into a new
evolutionary direction leading us to the perception of *chains* and
even recursive networks of Cause and Effect, which perception is the
germ of all cosmological thinking - past and present - including,
possibly whatever Ken means by "humanity" in this discussion. 

Cheers! Gord

>(One good(?) thing, though is that this apparatus will finally settle all 
>the humans vs animals questions. Stuff that any dog lover has known all 
>along :-). ken collins

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