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Blog Archive for the ‘Evolution’ Category

Steven Pinker Seminar Primer

by Austin Brown on September 26th, 02012

“The Decline of Violence”
Monday October 8, 02012 at the Herbst Theater, San Francisco

Steven Pinker’s prolific output for both academic and popular audiences has made him one of the most well-known evolutionary psychologists in the world. Trained formally in cognitive psychology, Pinker has tirelessly applied lessons from his groundbreaking research to a. . .   Read More

Edward O. Wilson, “The Real Creation Story”

by Austin Brown on May 7th, 02012

This lecture was presented as part of The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking.

The Social Conquest of Earth
Friday April 20, 02012 – San Francisco


Video is up on the Wilson Seminar page.

Audio is up on the Wilson Seminar page, or you can subscribe to our podcast.

The Real. . .   Read More

Wilson Seminar Primer

by Austin Brown on April 6th, 02012

“The Social Conquest of Earth”
Presented by The Long Now Foundation and the Exploratorium 
Friday April 20, 02012 at the Palace of Fine Arts Theater, San Francisco

Edward O. Wilson started small. As a young man interested in biology, the lowly ant was his passion. Ubiquitous, diverse, and socially complex, however, ants provided Wilson with. . .   Read More

Urban Evolution

by Alex Mensing on August 12th, 02011

Cities are often hotbeds of creativity and innovation, where the pace of life is faster and the diversity of people is greater. But humans aren’t the only things living in our cities – recent research by evolutionary biologists indicates that the processes of evolution and ecological change can also speed up in urban environments. In. . .   Read More

Evolvability and 50,000 Generations of E. Coli

by Austin Brown on July 14th, 02011

Adapting to one’s environment may be essential to survival, but environments themselves change, and retaining adaptability can mean the difference between short- and long-term success. A team of researchers was recently able to observe and analyse the benefits to bacteria of different mutational strategies along these lines.

The key was an ongoing experiment. . .   Read More

Carl Zimmer, “Viral Time”

by Stewart Brand on June 9th, 02011

What’s time to a virus?
A Summary by Stewart Brand

“Everything about viruses is extreme,” Zimmer began. The number of viruses on Earth is estimated to be 1 followed by 31 zeroes. Small as they are, if you stacked them all up, the stack would reach 100 million light years. They are the planet. . .   Read More

Tim Flannery, “Here on Earth”

by Stewart Brand on May 4th, 02011

Wallace beats Darwin
A Summary by Stewart Brand

The great insight of natural selection was published simultaneously by Charles Darwin and Alfred Russell Wallace in 1858, Flannery pointed out, but their interpretations of the insight then diverged.

Darwin’s harsh view of “survival of the fittest” led too easily to social Darwinism, eugenics societies, neo. . .   Read More

Matt Ridley, “Deep Optimism”

by Stewart Brand on March 24th, 02011

Undeniable Progress
A Summary by Stewart Brand
Hominids had upright walking, stone tools, fire, even language but still remained in profound stasis. What led to humanity’s global takeoff, Ridley argues, was the invention of exchange about 120,000 years ago. “That’s ten times older than agriculture.”

The beginnings of trade encouraged specialization and. . .   Read More

The global brain

by Kirk Citron on February 21st, 02011

The Long News: stories that might still matter fifty, or a hundred, or ten thousand years from now.

A computer defeats humans on a television game show. An information network brings down a series of dictatorships. We are witnessing a massive explosion in data, and an equally massive explosion in our ability to process and. . .   Read More

Mary Catherine Bateson, “Live Longer, Think Longer”

by Stewart Brand on February 10th, 02011

Parenting Earth

A Summary by Stewart Brand

The birth of a first child is the most intense disruption that most adults experience. Suddenly the new parents have no sleep, no social life, no sex, and they have to keep up with a child that changes from week to week. “Two ignorant adults learn from the. . .   Read More