Cephalization and Intelligence

kenneth paul collins KPCollins at postoffice.worldnet.att.net
Fri Oct 11 02:54:09 EST 1996


S. Smith / R. Bourgeois wrote:
> 
> Gord,
> 
> I appreciate the difficulty in defining "intelligence".  However, I am not
> looking to split hairs over semantics either.  I'll restate my question
> then.... Is encephalization an a_priori requirement for a species capable
> of technological advances?  I suppose this is a question involving
> theoretical limitations.  Do advanced thought process absolutely require
> the transmission speeds of neurons stuck close together within a few
> centimeters in a brain case?  Any speculation on the subject would help me.
> Thanks again.
> 
> Ray

[snip]

...no... but, given a particular nerual architecture, a "spaced-out" nervous 
system will tend to consistently lose competitions with a scaled down version 
of the same neural architecture, because the more-compact version will 
converge faster, and be more energy-efficient... cephalization has even more 
advantages because, besides shrinking interconnection lengths, it allows the 
head-localized sensory apparatus to orient relatively independently with 
respect to the body, and minimizes "fancy" through-the-joints conveying of 
information (hard to protect, and prone to injury... like one's "funny 
bone")... ken
_____________________________________________________
People hate because they fear, and they fear because
they do not understand, and they do not understand 
because hating is less work than understanding.



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