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Chimpanzee Intelligence Largely Determined By Genetics

timothy posted about three weeks ago | from the why-I'll-be-a-smart-monkey's-uncle dept.

Science 157

As reported by National Geographic, intelligence in chimpanzees appears to be strongly heritable, according to research led by William Hopkins, a primatologist at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center in Atlanta, Georgia, who examined both genetic and environmental factors for a group of related chimpanzees with varying measured intelligence: To find out how much of that variability is due to genetics, Hopkins and his team assessed the cognitive abilities of 99 captive chimpanzees. They used a battery of 13 tests measuring various manifestations of intelligence, such as how the animals dealt with the physical world, reacted to sound, and used tools. The group of chimps tested had an expansive family tree, ranging from full siblings to fourth and fifth cousins. This allowed the researchers to calculate how well scores on cognitive traits aligned with genetic relatedness. Two categories of tasks were significantly heritable: those related to spatial cognition, such as learning physical locations, and those that required social cognition, such as grabbing a person's attention. Some chimps are quite clever, making kissing sounds or clapping their hands to draw an experimenter's attention, Hopkins said. "This one is a real measure of intelligence and innovative behavior."

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This Chimanzee video amazed me... (5, Interesting)

bogaboga (793279) | about three weeks ago | (#47439871)

...Anyone agree? Have a look...
Here... [youtube.com]

Re:This Chimanzee video amazed me... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439985)

Yes, indeed. Chimps are amazing. [youtube.com]

Re:This Chimanzee video amazed me... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440409)

I'd mod you up, but the smart money says if I did that I'd never get mod points again.

Re:This Chimanzee video amazed me... (3, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about three weeks ago | (#47440097)

You'll have to do some diging, because I don't remember where I saw it... but they now understand why they are so good at that kind of task. It has to do with "working memory" and some other kind of memory that we're good at. I forget which, but having working memory that good would actually hinder us. The chimps have their plan DONE in their mind when they start pressing buttons. They do not need to be able to see the numbers anymore, because they no longer matter. The chimp saw the numbers, decided a course of action and executed. Humans on the other hand decide what to do for each key press. We make a new judgement call and continue. This is what makes us so creative. If something were to happen to the numbers, like they get rearranged we'd still be about as good. It's just as much work for us to deal with the new state as the old. The chimps on the other hand would have to stat over. This is, at least how I remember it. I'd research if you're really interested.

Re:This Chimanzee video amazed me... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440525)

People have been known to do it as well.

Some after a good bit of training the visual memory. Others have good visual memory already.

but i thought we are all equal? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439875)

are you telling the stuff the jew professors at college told me about german engineers and black welfare moms being equal was a lie? why would they do such a thing?

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439921)

Of course not, this experiment is just proof that social conditioning affects chimpanzee too.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440249)

Then why was the truncheon in lieu of conversation of the downmod applied to him? Hiding something?? Looks that way to me.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (1)

ArcadeMan (2766669) | about three weeks ago | (#47440259)

That's so true.

Like my post on Facebook if you approve.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (1)

jimmydevice (699057) | about two weeks ago | (#47441305)

The funniest joke in history is hiding here, But I can't see it because of the N2O.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439927)

They were trying to not hurt your feelings, knowing that you are a worthless sack of shit that will die alone.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (2, Insightful)

Suiggy (1544213) | about three weeks ago | (#47440101)

Funny how it's social justice warrior types such as yourself that exude the most hatred and malcontent for others. Quite the paradox.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440453)

But they only hate you for what you think so it's ok.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440877)

You know... It simply might have been a sarcastic or cynical joke hinting to all the "you can achieve anything if you just believe in yourself and work hard enough"-bullshit that's taught to children by a certain subset of our society.

It's hard to tell in some cases w/o knowing the author's intention.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440253)

Ah, that's it: Project your own weaknesses and inadequacies (needing others, you can't stand up alone on your own 2 obviously weak feet minus "support" and we know what kind too).

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (-1, Flamebait)

Suiggy (1544213) | about three weeks ago | (#47440065)

I'd give you modpoints if I had any currently. inb4 Jew admins delete your post.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440689)

are you telling the stuff the jew professors at college told me about german engineers and black welfare moms being equal was a lie? why would they do such a thing?

Yes, it's true. Also, they really really hate the superior intelligence of the hairless monkeys--especially the white ones.

Re:but i thought we are all equal? (1)

lazy genes (741633) | about three weeks ago | (#47440719)

All humans have autism, some just try harder to cover it up than others.

Meanwhile In Humans... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439879)

...we're lead to believe with enough money for education everyone can be intelligent!
 

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (3, Insightful)

Suiggy (1544213) | about three weeks ago | (#47440107)

Mass education isn't about making the masses of goyim more equal or intelligent. It's about breaking them away from the authority of their parents, selling them the opiate of "equality" and making them serve the will and authority of the modern state. It helps to increase tax revenues, thus enriching the elite. Nothing more or less.

Now serve your masters, goy.

"We have one that can SEE..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440263)

Regarding your post (ever seen the film "They LIVE" with Rowdy Roddy Piper? You have a valid point. I am merely seconding it, by analogy to film is all).

Re:"We have one that can SEE..." (1)

callmetheraven (711291) | about three weeks ago | (#47440357)

I have one here that can see

Then see this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440669)

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440385)

I don't really get you; you're a racist, but you don't follow the party line like the rest of the members of the racist Democratic Party of the United States. Are you from another country?

Read this (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440663)

From the Jew Talmud:

1. Sanhedrin 59a: "Murdering Goyim is like killing a wild animal."

2. Abodah Zara 26b: "Even the best of the Gentiles should be killed."

3. Sanhedrin 59a: "A goy (Gentile) who pries into The Law (Talmud) is guilty of death."

4. Yebhamoth 11b: "Sexual intercourse with a little girl is permitted if she is three years of age."

5. Schabouth Hag. 6d: "Jews may swear falsely by use of subterfuge wording."

6. Hilkkoth Akum X1: "Do not save Goyim in danger of death."

7. Hilkkoth Akum X1: "Show no mercy to the Goyim."

8. Choschen Hamm 388, 15: "If it can be proven that someone has given the money of Israelites to the Goyim, a way must be found after prudent consideration to wipe him off the face of the earth."

9. Choschen Hamm 266,1: "A Jew may keep anything he finds which belongs to the Akum (Gentile). For he who returns lost property (to Gentiles) sins against the Law by increasing the power of the transgressors of the Law. It is praiseworthy, however, to return lost property if it is done to honor the name of God, namely, if by so doing, Christians will praise the Jews and look upon them as honorable people."

10. Szaaloth-Utszabot, The Book of Jore Dia 17: "A Jew should and must make a false oath when the Goyim asks if our books contain anything against them."

11. Baba Necia 114, 6: "The Jews are human beings, but the nations of the world are not human beings but beasts."

12. Simeon Haddarsen, fol. 56-D: "When the Messiah comes every Jew will have 2800 slaves."

13. Nidrasch Talpioth, p. 225-L: "Jehovah created the non-Jew in human form so that the Jew would not have to be served by beasts. The non-Jew is consequently an animal in human form, and condemned to serve the Jew day and night."

14. Aboda Sarah 37a: "A Gentile girl who is three years old can be violated."

16. Gad. Shas. 2:2: "A Jew may violate but not marry a non-Jewish girl."

17. Tosefta. Aboda Zara B, 5: "If a goy kills a goy or a Jew, he is responsible; but if a Jew kills a goy, he is NOT responsible."

18. Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 388: "It is permitted to kill a Jewish denunciator everywhere. It is permitted to kill him even before he denounces."

19. Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 348: "All property of other nations belongs to the Jewish nation, which, consequently, is entitled to seize upon it without any scruples."

20. Tosefta, Abda Zara VIII, 5: "How to interpret the word 'robbery.' A goy is forbidden to steal, rob, or take women slaves, etc., from a goy or from a Jew. But a Jew is NOT forbidden to do all this to a goy."

21. Seph. Jp., 92, 1: "God has given the Jews power over the possessions and blood of all nations."

22. Schulchan Aruch, Choszen Hamiszpat 156: "When a Jew has a Gentile in his clutches, another Jew may go to the same Gentile, lend him money and in turn deceive him, so that the Gentile shall be ruined. For the property of a Gentile, according to our law, belongs to no one, and the first Jew that passes has full right to seize it."

23. Schulchan Aruch, Johre Deah, 122: "A Jew is forbidden to drink from a glass of wine which a Gentile has touched, because the touch has made the wine unclean."

24. Nedarim 23b: "He who desires that none of his vows made during the year be valid, let him stand at the beginning of the year and declare, 'Every vow which I may make in the future shall be null'. His vows are then invalid."

http://www.bing.com/search?q=j... [bing.com]

You can clearly see what they think of you all (yes, non-jews are Goy/Goyim and Gentiles from above), and quoted straight from their own belief systems (their bible(s)).

Think about that. I didn't write it either. The Jews did.

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (3, Insightful)

TheMeuge (645043) | about three weeks ago | (#47440133)

I'll feed this troll.

...we're lead to believe with enough money for education everyone can be intelligent!

Appropriate general education ensures that we all have a chance to get to a certain level. Surely some people are more intelligent than others at baseline, but like most characteristics it needs to be exercised and developed... in the absence of education, it's easy to waste what you were born with, and that's what general education tries to prevent - the waste of intelligence. The other important role of education is to ensure that no matter what your level of education, you receive instruction sufficient to let you integrate into society.

Ok, your bullcrap aside? The truth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440281)

It's to assure the current status quo has enough "wage slaves" that can function at AT LEAST the lowest common denominator level so those on top can STAY on top &, to create tax paying wage slaves being given false hope "you too can be on top of the 'mountain of gold' in the USA" which is, of course, complete bullshit. The "infamous they" 1% keep things just as they are, and control what is taught educationally as well (history you learn is about the victors and their leaders, not the REAL history, for instance). Get real.

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about three weeks ago | (#47440679)

I'll feed this troll.

...we're lead to believe with enough money for education everyone can be intelligent!

Appropriate general education ensures that we all have a chance to get to a certain level. Surely some people are more intelligent than others at baseline, but like most characteristics it needs to be exercised and developed... in the absence of education, it's easy to waste what you were born with, and that's what general education tries to prevent - the waste of intelligence. The other important role of education is to ensure that no matter what your level of education, you receive instruction sufficient to let you integrate into society.

Thought experiment: if we had perfect education, whatever that might be, then the only differences in the per-person outcome would be due to individual aptitude.

Think there wouldn't be differences?

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440309)

...we're led to believe with enough money for education everyone can be intelligent!

FTFY

Re: Meanwhile In Humans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440639)

he didn't, he clearly meant lead.. Education is only important because the 1% wants us as slaves, we are all completely perfect without any help or instruction.

Re:Meanwhile In Humans... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440329)

Some chimps are quite clever, making kissing sounds or clapping their hands to draw an experimenter's attention, Hopkins said. "This one is a real measure of intelligence and innovative behavior."

Enough ADD medicines for all and the intelligent class bullies and disturbance seekers can be made more stupid and less innovative. So more money for the drug industry!

First Post (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439891)

First Post

The study you won't see on Slashdot... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439907)

Over simplification (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439929)

The heritability of a human's intelligence [wsj.com] is as high as 77.1% in identical twin studies.

But of course, genes are just the hand you were delt. What you do with that hand is up to your parents, environment and later you.

Just flat out saying it's 50% is just an oversimplification and I'm sure it's the same with the chimps.

Re:Over simplification (2)

John.Banister (1291556) | about two weeks ago | (#47441181)

I still can't help but wonder what would happen if the Chinese government said something like "If both parents are in the top 10% for IQ, they can have all the kids they want." How much more would the per-capita GDP change after 5 generations?

In Other News (5, Funny)

sycodon (149926) | about three weeks ago | (#47439933)

A chimpanzee named Fred was eaten by a tiger after recklessly clapping his hands and making kissing sounds, attracting the tiger's attention.

Other members of the troop were unanimous in describing Fred as "not the sharpest stick in the jungle".

Re:In Other News (2)

Lotana (842533) | about two weeks ago | (#47441091)

But the following day, a bunch of pink, hairless apes wiped out the rest of the troop, because they were bored and chimps looked ugly to them.

However, Bob was spared because he kept clapping his hands and making kissing sounds, which the murderous homo sapiens found cute and adorable.

The hightest correlation... (0)

duckintheface (710137) | about three weeks ago | (#47439953)

... is to the A112 virus. But you knew that.

Some chimps are quite clever (1)

kruach aum (1934852) | about three weeks ago | (#47439955)

They demonstrated a novel argument for why there are no hidden variables and that the statistical descriptions of quantum mechanics reflect reality accurately.

Simple tests have simple explanations. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439963)

Psychology, still reeling from its failure in the once fashionable fields phrenology and eugenics, has returned with a handful of tests which can be weighted in way the scientist pleases to determine how much intelligence is heritable.

And today it's "about half".

(Related chimps have insignificant environmental similarities too, of course. But that's by the bye.)

It really is a dismal discipline.

Re:Simple tests have simple explanations. (2)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about two weeks ago | (#47441175)

Eugenics is a field of psychology, really?

Scientologist troll alert.

Humans too (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47439971)

Universities suspected this with humans also and did published research on it; Most of which has quietly been removed because it's not politically correct to show Asians have a 10pt higher IQ on average than white person(me), and 'other numbers'.

Interestingly enough true genius seems quite random, can have a long history of average parents etc and them produce someone quite gifted.

Re:Humans too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440431)

"True genius" while appear to be random, is couple standard deviations from average. Higher the average, more likely is the genius.

Re:Humans too (1)

steak (145650) | about three weeks ago | (#47440747)

are you talking about that movie where iceman uses a satellite with frickin lasers to fill some dude's house with popcorn?

Re:Humans too (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441245)

IQ tests show one thing: how good someone is at taking IQ tests.

We can't even quantify the performance of a computer with one number -- what makes you think we can do it with a mind?

Exciting Times (1)

sdack (601542) | about three weeks ago | (#47439981)

I am looking forward to Hollywood's announcement of a breeding program for intelligent chimps in order to cut costs on future productions of Planet of the Apes.

By the way, the study seems to indicate that trees are only as intelligent as their genes allow it to be, but specialised breeding could lead to intelligent plants. But for now, crossing a human with a flower may not result in a talking flower, though it still could be a pretty looking flower.

Re:Exciting Times (1)

Culture20 (968837) | about three weeks ago | (#47440415)

crossing a human with a flower may not result in a talking flower

Probably a screaming flower writhing in anguish if sci-fi authors are sufficiently prescient.

See the movie (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440009)

Am I really supposed to believe it's just coincidence that this story has been showing up everywhere for the past week? It definitely couldn't just be PR for the new Planet of the Apes movie opening this weekend.

Thank god it doesn't apply to humans... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440023)

LOL... (That was sarcasm, by the way).

Thank god all the races are equal - right? Thank heavens blacks are just as intelligent as whites - I mean, look at Africa! What a powerhouse of intelligence it is! All those computer chip plants, software companies, medical research, aircraft factories, car factories, etc.etc. (LOL again)

Just say no (1)

cold fjord (826450) | about three weeks ago | (#47440029)

Re:Just say no (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440061)

Actually they succeeded. You can see the results in Detroit, among other places.

Re:Just say no (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440191)

That's remarkable! You seem to be a product of selective breeding yourself: man-ass-pig. Half man, half ass, half pig. Although I might have the proportions wrong, you seem like a total ass while being only half a man and a pig.

Re:Just say no (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440799)

Have you ever been to Detroit? Have you ever seen some of the people there? Have you actually ever interacted with them in any meaningful way?

I suspect that you haven't. The views you hold now, which I'm sure have been developed in a sterile and academic setting, would change very quickly were you ever exposed to the real world that's out there.

Re:Just say no (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47440945)

In the real world, apes and humans haven't been cross-bred. Bad behavior by humans doesn't justify race baiting. Besides that, it isn't a problem of color, but of values and culture. If you don't get that right pretty much anything you say is meaningless and useless.

Largely Determined By Genetics... (1)

leomrtns (78786) | about three weeks ago | (#47440033)

... although factors like scholarity and religious affiliation also play a role

And in politically correct news (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440045)

Human intelligence has absolutely nothing to do with genetics and everyone is equal.

haha! (1)

slashdice (3722985) | about three weeks ago | (#47440073)

HAHA
- Nelson Muntz and Eric Raymond

Don't use the M-word! (1)

nospam007 (722110) | about three weeks ago | (#47440119)

"why-I'll-be-a-smart-monkey's-uncle dept."

Ooooook!

Furthermore: (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440227)

Human intelligence may also be significantly determined by genetics...

** WOO WOO WOOO **

Sorry people, the person who posted the above sentence has been arrested for politically incorrect statements. Pointing out statistics and scientific studies is racist. He won't ever be bothering you again.

Next question (1)

thieh (3654731) | about three weeks ago | (#47440247)

I am sure "Is it gender linked/dominated/driven?" would be asked next

Next question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440717)

When IQ tests were first developed, researchers were surprised that women have the same average as men. However, they have less variability.

Intelligence isn't always advantageous (4, Interesting)

aNonnyMouseCowered (2693969) | about three weeks ago | (#47440287)

The corollary here is that intelligence isn't always an advantage. Or else all chimps would have evolved human class intelligence. The question I'd like answered is, what natural advantages does innate stupidity confer upon a creature that enables it to spread its just as efficiently or even bettera than an intelligent creature. Maybe the neurons required to be good at puzzle solving and the like are subtracted from the total needed for street or jungle "smarts".

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (4, Informative)

duckintheface (710137) | about three weeks ago | (#47440353)

The usual explanation is that large, active brains use lots of energy, which in some environments is better spent gathering bananas.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

sinij (911942) | about three weeks ago | (#47440483)

Yes, gathering bananas and chasing tail. Intelligence does not increase your reproductive fitness past some baseline number, as a result we see regression to the mean. Why mean? Because it used to be optimal. It still might be optimal, because you don't see driven, successful people out-reproducing average bears.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

Lotana (842533) | about two weeks ago | (#47441083)

Intelligence does not increase your reproductive fitness past some baseline number, as a result we see regression to the mean.

I disagree.

Intelligence has improved out survival to such a degree, that you don't need to reproduce as much as an average bear to successfully pass on your genes.

Survival is not just about fucking more. As a matter of fact, having 5 children is counter-productive because they consume so much resources and require so much care. If your one child survives into adulthood, finds a mate and successfully breeds, then your evolutionary duty is done. Any more and you are introducing stress on to the environment to the detriment of your offspring. If you notice driven, successful people tend to not have any issues with passing on their genes.

Contrast it to your example of a bear: They need to breed more often, because that intelligent, top-of-the-foodchain predator might shoot and skin your offspring before he/she gets a chance to pass the genes further. No matter how successful the bear is, it is just a matter of pure luck whether it will come across a bloodthirsty hairless ape or not.

Compare the numbers: There are much more humans in the world than bears.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about two weeks ago | (#47441199)

You missed the important part in GP's claim: "past some baseline number".

And that may actually well be true. There's one interesting tidbit that came out of anthropological studies: apparently, earliest homo sapiens sapiens had a better developed brain than we do. This implies, at least indirectly, that they were better at core cognitive tasks (such as pattern matching) that seem to be underlying what we think of as "intelligence". In other words, if you took such an early human and put him in a modern world, with proper nutrition, education etc, he'd likely beat most of the kids in the class.

But then it shrunk. And the reason why is, indeed, that brains are very expensive energy-wise. That's why few other species get it even remotely close to what we have - you basically need to have a very specific set of environmental conditions and random inherited traits to coincide to produce an environment which would cause natural selection for intelligence to that extent in the first place. On the other hand, once it gets a significant starting push, the benefits that it yields long-term are such that it becomes the single most important trait (as you rightly note, there are more humans in the world than bears - indeed, more humans than any other mammals). But there is still an upper cap defined by energy requirements, and apparently we have actually hit that cap thousands of years ago already, and then bounced back slightly.

Regarding passing on genes, it actually doesn't even require having any children to pass on genes. Another way is to ensure the survival and the passing of genes of your relatives - sure, they don't share 100% of them with you, but if they share 50%, and with your support they can have 5 kids where otherwise they'd have 2 and you'd have 2, you (or rather your genes) are statistically better off.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440591)

True, which is why there are so many Republicans. They, obviously, don't use their brains for thinking. They only use it to figure-out ways to gain money and power thus proving themselves morons.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440429)

Well... the smart ones think there are rules, processes, to be followed when courting a mate. The dumb ones just stick their dicks in anything that will allow them to (or let anyone with a dick stick it in them, gender allowing). I'd say the dumb ones are going to reproduce a lot more than the smart ones.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440495)

Yes, in some instances, aggression and dominance are better for gene propagation. (see humans)

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

turp182 (1020263) | about three weeks ago | (#47440585)

It has to do with the survival pressures that are being experienced. If they are relatively static over time, rote learning (or instincts) can provide survival.

Homo Sapiens moved about and had varied survival pressures, to which they adapted. Higher intelligence was one of the adaptations, as was bipedal movement.

DNA expresses a variety of aspects leading to its own survival, be they sexual, defensive, or offensive in nature. DNA survives, the individuals carrying it do not.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47440987)

...why did you choose the name of a prostate surgical technique as the stem of your handle? A satisfied customer, perhaps, "ask me about my prostate resection and my ability to achieve an erection?"

Are you still able to achieve an erection after your TURP? I hear the odds aren't great.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (2)

penguinoid (724646) | about three weeks ago | (#47440745)

Reproduction in intelligent creatures has always been a hack from lower systems. Very few intelligent creatures have as their mind's objective to reproduce as much as possible, and increasing intelligence means it's that much easier to find loopholes in the lower systems, or exert self-control over them. It probably isn't a simple thing to set as the intelligent creature's objective to propagate its genes, with the requisite math (relatives share your genes to some extent), and the proper mate selection criteria, many of which aren't conscious nor obvious (you probably aren't aware of comparing your potential mate's major histocompatibility complex [wikipedia.org] to your own). I suspect a mind sufficiently advanced to understand all this would be hard to hack to a different objective without a big reduction in intelligence.

Re: Intelligence isn't always advantageous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440763)

The male praying mantis, after being decapitated by the female he is trying to mate with, becomes a Fornicating Machine. Turns out his brain is inhibitory.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about three weeks ago | (#47440777)

The corollary here is that intelligence isn't always an advantage. Or else all chimps would have evolved human class intelligence.

A palaeontologist interviewed here on Slashdot pointed out that this sort of logic only works for the apex predator, and the apex herbivore. They are constantly in a struggle to be the 'best.' For other species, you can find all kinds of weird evolutions as they find their niche in the world.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

alvinrod (889928) | about two weeks ago | (#47440977)

This assumes that chimps aren't on their way there. However, without understanding how intelligence first arose in humans or what in our genes is responsible for it, there's no good way to determine what it would take chimps to get there other than enough time.

Also, what makes you think that stupidity has advantages? That humans exist on every continent on Earth and will probably have moved off planet within a thousand years and likely will have a least tried to move out of our solar system in the next ten thousand would suggest that intelligence ultimately confers more of an advantage. Other creatures are limited by their ability to adapt to new environments. Humans move there and adapt their environment to suit them. The only thing that really limits us is our own lack of understanding of the universe, but we've been amassing knowledge and continually peeling away the layers of mystery. The more we add to that pile, the better we're able to adapt our world to suit us.

Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (1)

Lotana (842533) | about two weeks ago | (#47441109)

The corollary here is that intelligence isn't always an advantage. Or else all chimps would have evolved human class intelligence.

In my opinion, intelligence is always an advantage and the more the better. It is just that the random changes of natural selection did not favour the chimps. They were lucky enough to get enough intelligence to be fairly high up on the food chain. Evolution is not guided and does not get the best result.

So this is how scientists research intelligence (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440289)

So this is how scientists research intelligence without hurting the feelings of people who believe everyone on the planet is as smart (individually or collectively) as everyone else on the planet. They study chimps. They publish their results. Left unmentioned is whether their conclusions might have parallels for the human race, but the fact that they specifically studied the acknowledged closest-related species says it for them. After all, drugs are developed by testing much further-removed animals like rats, and it's a process that seems to work great.

If these scientists had tried to study intelligence in humans, well, let's just say they'd have been doing it on their own dime, and their results would have been largely dismissed.

Can we teach one to play chess? (1)

mark-t (151149) | about three weeks ago | (#47440323)

[nt]

This just in! (3, Informative)

sinij (911942) | about three weeks ago | (#47440423)

This just in, intelligence also highly heritable in humans. Only it isn't politically correct to talk about.

Re:This just in! (0)

Intrepid imaginaut (1970940) | about three weeks ago | (#47440563)

Yes, that's why Einstein's parents and grandparents were world reknowned scientists.

Re:This just in! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440601)

you see that chimp over there good sir? yes? good. he's smarter than you, try to learn something from him.

Re:This just in! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440653)

Currie's family on the other hand...

Re:This just in! (3, Insightful)

am 2k (217885) | about three weeks ago | (#47440865)

His father was an electrical engineer, but maybe he knew that a single data point is irrelevant in statistics.

control (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about three weeks ago | (#47440425)

I assume all the chimps in the experiment were hand reared from birth.

genetics and intelligence was there ever doubt? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440491)

Humans are the silliest peoples.

Re:genetics and intelligence was there ever doubt? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about three weeks ago | (#47440621)

Intelligence is social conditioning. Anybody saying otherwise is a racist. Everybody is the same! ~SJW

Learned Behavior can be Passed On (2, Interesting)

retroworks (652802) | about three weeks ago | (#47440505)

Can't remember whether I saw this on /. or another news site, but the cutting edge research on evolution has been called "neo Lamarckism". Intelligence itself can be passed on genetically. A recent "Epigenetic inheritance" study showed that mice who were taught to associate an odor with danger had baby mice who reacted strongly to the same odor. http://www.sciencedaily.com/re... [sciencedaily.com] (Science Daily 12/2013). It may be that learning or education "triggers" latent genes. Lamarck may not turn out to be a Tesla, but Darwin is unfinished business.

*CLAP* * CLAP* Smooches! (1)

Irate Engineer (2814313) | about three weeks ago | (#47440735)

Ha! Got your attention!

Racist science (-1, Troll)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | about two weeks ago | (#47440993)

This article is precisely why we need to NOT worship science as the end-all, be-all of solutions to our problems. Science will happily lead us down the primrose path of racism. Something for the science-worshippers among us to contemplate. Again and again we see Slashdot users angrily condemning competing belief systems and saying science is the one true way of thinking. It's not, and this is precisely why.

Re: Racist science (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441061)

If you are just learning that pseudoscience has long been utilized for all sorts of morally reprehensible behavior, you are a bit late to the party.

Re:Racist science (0)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about two weeks ago | (#47441213)

Are you basically saying that science is a bad thing because it sometimes gives answers which are objectively valid, but which go against your core set of beliefs?

The funny thing with beliefs is that when they do not correspond to reality, they always lose in long term, every single time. If you pretend that gravity doesn't exist, it'll "work" right until the point you walk over the next pothole, while those who stick to objective view will just walk around. Science, in that sense, is a "religion" of objectivity, taking the world as it is rather than pretending that it is what you want it do be. That's what distinguishes it from any other belief system - the only belief inherent in it is that the world is objective and can be studied.

Re:Racist science (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441287)

Are you saying that if facts tend to show that IQ varies by race, for example, that we should discard science and favor some other theorem that preserves the gentle and fragile sensibilities of the general public?

We already know that all humans aren't the same. It would be ridiculous to think they are. If that is a "primrose path of racism" then so be it.

Intelligence is not heritable (1)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | about two weeks ago | (#47441037)

The capacity to become intelligent is.

Re:Intelligence is not heritable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441295)

Proof?

We know that people can learn skills and improve their thinking, but there is a baseline that is genetic from your parents. Proof of this is we know that of genetic inheritance of all sorts of mental characteristics including mental illness, capacity for autism and IQ scores. To think that the design of your thought organ is not important to how well it works is to be ignorant to the basic facts of life.

Re:Intelligence is not heritable (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441327)

It's dictated by genes like anything else. Matter of fact, they've already identified a few one-letter switches, each of which dictate a several-percent IQ improvement. Read this book: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_Differences_in_Intelligence_(book) Come back informed.

Re:Intelligence is not heritable (1)

quenda (644621) | about two weeks ago | (#47441355)

The capacity to become intelligent is.

Pointless word-play. You could say the same about height or hair-colour.

Having the right genes = privilege (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441209)

So privilege really does exist. On a genetic level, even!

Oh Tumblr, I knew you were right all along!

op largely wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about two weeks ago | (#47441333)

Discussion here: http://languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu/nll/?p=13370#more-13370

Planet of the, um (1)

ignavus (213578) | about two weeks ago | (#47441443)

So now we could breed up a strain of highly intelligent chimpanzees by selecting new parents from the highest scoring chimps?

Hereditary=genetics? (1)

MRe_nl (306212) | about two weeks ago | (#47441529)

Hereditary=genetics? What kind of a gross over-simplification is that? "Like in Humans, Genes Drive Half of Chimp Intelligence"? Genes don't drive human intelligence. They determine the upper and lower limits that can be achieved with proper nutrition, care and education and a multitude of other factors. More and more factors are being discovered everyday, each diminishing the role of genetics.
http://pss.sagepub.com/content... [sagepub.com]
http://www.apa.org/monitor/feb... [apa.org]

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