Thursday, July 09, 2009

Parasite mind

The more we learn about the astounding variability of human brains (presumably related to the rapid human evolution of the past 5,000 years) and the “normality” of some persons with fairly gross variations in the genes affecting brain development, the more peculiar commonplace human cooperation seems.

To a geek, of course, this is rather like the same software being able to run rather similarly on very different hardware. It’s not surprising to us that Chrome OS will run on very different ARM and Intel architectures, or that I ran the same software on my G5 iMac (RISC) and my Intel MacBook.

Which leads inevitably to all kinds of weird speculations.

Do dogs, with their whacko plastic genome and 25,000 years of co-evolution with humans now run a stripped down version of our minds on their wetware?

If we think of brains as a substrate for minds (and, of course, memes), then minds start to feel like different things, things that have their own evolution and natural selection. Things that might not completely respect species boundaries … (Science fiction readers can readily fill in that blank).

Minds can’t live independently though. They need something to run on.

Kind of like parasites, though not to be immediately confused with the Zimmerian world of mind-controlling parasites.

I wonder if that’s anything like the parasite mind now sold on Amazon ….


See also: The emergent ecosystem of the corporate amoeba, and prosthetic memory.

1 comment:

John Gordon said...

There was an odd comment on my post that was mildly insulting, but sort of on topic.

I allowed it, but then, since it was so curious, I clicked on the linked sender to see who it was turns.

Turns out be a fairly clever spam blog, so it was a link attack.

I've deleted it.

Those splog links are getting nefarious. Not too long before the splogbots go skynet!