Re: Neoteny was Re: god makes hubey

Phil Nicholls (
Sat, 25 Nov 1995 09:18:12 GMT (H. M. Hubey) raged:

> (Phillip Bigelow) writes:

>> Ontogeny is another strong indicator or ancestor-descendent relationships.

>Yeay, if I said this I'd be asked for proof,

No you wouldn't. One of the most important criteria for establishing
homology is that the structures have a common ontogenetic origin.
This is a well established fact.

>but the poor guy read it in a book with latin names in it so it
>makes it scientific :-)..

You know, you are sounding more and more like Pat Buchanan every day.

>Good grief. From bone gazing to fetus gazing and it's all
>science because they slap latin names on everything they see.,

No, it's all science because it deals with DATA. The data in this
case is comparative embryology.

>But their observation powers immediately fail like a car that
>refuses to start up on a cold January morning as soon as time
>comes to realize that animals vary in intelligence and that
>some kind of an absolute intelligence scale would have
>to take that into account.

I have no problem with the fact that animals vary in intelligence.
All you have to do is present and support a method for quantifying
intelligence in different ways that avoids circularity. A good place
to start might be Harry Jerison's _The Evolution of the Brain and
Intelligence_. It's an oldie, but a goodie.

No what does this have to do with neoteny?

>>Ontogeny is strongly correlative with neoteny in showing
>>temporally-retrograde evolutionary relationships.

>Say what?

I'll have to second that.

> correlated how? It seems like something strange happens?

>LIke the chimps morphology. If it continued in the same direction
>it would wind up with very short legs and very long arms, not like
>humans at all.

In what direction? Are you talking about adult chimps or newborn

>> Mark, if you need help learning this biology/paleontology stuff, I will be
>>glad to provide you a list of references to get you caught up.

>Read above. Maybe you should learn to read first :-)..

Phillip, I think you have missed something here. Mark doesn't need
to spend time studying a subject before he offers his opinions. How
did he put it?

"To me everything is a hobby. In fact, I think visually and do the
math later. I already know the answer before I try to show it."

Mark's method are untouched by such mundane things as data.

>And yes, if I need some help in making up latin names for things
>that need explanations and when I want to cover up my ignorance
>of the phenomenon by giving it a latin name, I'll call you.

>PS. Don't hold your breath.

Mark, explain glia cells.

Phil Nicholls
"To ask a question you must first know most of the answer"
-Robert Sheckley