Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

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Brendle
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Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Brendle » Sun Sep 15, 2013 7:07 pm

I'd like to know why apes (who are very intelligent and about 99% genetically identical to us) haven't learned all the valuable things that the homosapien learned, like making cutting tools from stones and walking on two feet.

I guess this question is like saying "why haven't humans learned to get gills and breathe underwater like fish?" The answer being...humans don't need to learn those things because they are land mammals, and apes don't need to learn all the human stuff because they are in a different environment.

But...how the f*ck did humans luck out so much? Our brains grew a lot faster than every other species of ape...and we figured out how to start fires and sh*t. Why were we the lucky ones? How come apes haven't figured the sh*t out? Aren't they smart enough to just look at us doing something and try to copy it?

I'm very ignorant with regards to evolution. I mean, I could just Google it, but I'd rather learn a few things from some of the smart SP fans here.
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Brendle
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Brendle » Sun Sep 15, 2013 7:14 pm

Or maybe it's happening right as I speak, since evolution is such a slow, slow, gradual process from generation to generation. Maybe the one or two apes that did develop some kind of language with one another and figured out a few of human's intellectual secrets...maybe they died.

Somewhere along the evolutionary chain, there was a modern ape who was just like any other ape, and something clicked in his brain...the first revelation to sharpen a stone so that it could cut more easily. Something clicked, and it was that extraordinary insight that led to me typing this sentence on the forum today. Why have no other animals on this planet had that insight yet?

Maybe they do and they just die off. Maybe that first genius ape just got really lucky...lucky enough to pass his genes on.
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Brendle
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Brendle » Sun Sep 15, 2013 7:20 pm

Or maybe that "extraordinary revelation" wasn't extraordinary at all. Maybe it was just as ordinary as a predator learning a new way to catch its prey. I'm just placing an unnecessary importance on intelligence (which is what the human excels at)...but of course, in certain environments intelligence is useless for survival.
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(ugly)Bob
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby (ugly)Bob » Sun Sep 15, 2013 9:36 pm

There's an ape that can sign ASL or American sign language, she learnt visually i think,..... :z
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Brendle
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Brendle » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:02 pm

Then why don't we breed these apes to make them smarter in each successive generation? Just to see what happens.
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(ugly)Bob
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby (ugly)Bob » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:14 pm

I dunno, science is discovering new things everyday
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John_117
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby John_117 » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:16 pm

(ugly)Bob wrote:I dunno, science is discovering new things everyday

Science is weird.

Image
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby (ugly)Bob » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:18 pm

John_117 wrote:
(ugly)Bob wrote:I dunno, science is discovering new things everyday

Science is weird.

Image



So dang weird that we still don't know the full function of le brain
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Big-Will
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Big-Will » Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:41 pm

Four words: Planet of the Apes

We do know that apes and other monkeys can pass their knowledge on to their young, and they can make simple tools, but we don't know if we want them, who are already stronger than us, to be as smart.
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Milo Vonnegut 3 » Mon Sep 16, 2013 2:48 pm

In a parallel universe, we were condemned to hell by Charlton Heston for pulling that shit on humanity.
Brendle
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Brendle » Mon Sep 16, 2013 4:30 pm

Big-Will wrote:Four words: Planet of the Apes

We do know that apes and other monkeys can pass their knowledge on to their young, and they can make simple tools, but we don't know if we want them, who are already stronger than us, to be as smart.

Interesting. I will have to watch that.

Surely there's a group of apes out in the wild who have been slowly learning how to make tools? We need to find them and cage them.

It's so lucky for us we were the first species to become super smart. Now we can swoop in and lock the species that threaten us, up.
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Mamont
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Mamont » Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:37 pm

A very hard question. Maybe it would be best to google it, or ask an evolutionist.
Only one here remotely qualified to answer the question is Unassumption.

Humans are the only animals to actively teach and learn. That is one of our great advantages. Chimpanzees don't teach their young actively. Their young just imitate their parents. Humans are different. We engage in teaching children everything we think they'll have to know and more. And children expect us to do so. Over time our knowledge accumulates.
If a chimpanzee learns a skill unknown to others, others might copy it, but the knowledge will be lost after a few generations. If parents don't repeat the action often enough, calf won't learn it, and if it learns it wrong, parents won't correct it.
One more great trait that we have is helping others even when there's no immediate benefit to us. All humans do it (except maybe for sociopaths). Even babies. Other apes help each other only if they can gain something directly. Helping each other we do things for our mutual benefit, even if there's nothing in it for one person.

(ugly)Bob wrote:There's an ape that can sign ASL or American sign language, she learnt visually i think,..... :z

Yes. Her name is Koko and she's a gorilla. The only reason she learned it was because humans taught her. She can't pass the knowledge to other gorillas.

Brendle wrote:Then why don't we breed these apes to make them smarter in each successive generation? Just to see what happens.

That would take a long time to achieve. Who knows, maybe someone is doing it?

John_117 wrote:Science is weird.

Science is just a method of explaining the world around us, ergo the world is weird.
triplemultiplex
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby triplemultiplex » Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:18 pm

Mamont wrote:
(ugly)Bob wrote:There's an ape that can sign ASL or American sign language, she learnt visually i think,..... :z

Yes. Her name is Koko and she's a gorilla. The only reason she learned it was because humans taught her. She can't pass the knowledge to other gorillas.


I'm pretty sure that gorilla didn't "learn" sign language, it just learned to imitate humans in exchange for rewards. Koko doesn't understand what it is she is communicating the way we were lead to believe. Lots of "Clever Hans" effect going on with Koko.

Humans evolved in a situation where we were physically inferior to many other animals and the utility of learning from other individuals and teaching what we knew to others was very prescient. There was selective pressure for teaching and learning the way humans do and that's really all you need to make us so different from the apes.

The apes' ability to imitate as a form of learning has been sufficient for their survival (at least until humans really started messing with their shit.) Smart as they are, they also can kick a little ass when push comes to shove. With humans, it was more like, "Learn how to sharpen this rock or get eaten by a cheetah."
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby (ugly)Bob » Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:23 pm

I just have mental images of apes jerkin' off

Come to think of it

Animals can imitate humans... If the jerking off was done in front of them to imitate
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Re: Why don't apes have the ability to learn visually?

Postby Milo Vonnegut 3 » Thu Sep 19, 2013 6:29 am

(ugly)Bob wrote:I just have mental images of apes jerkin' off

Come to think of it

Animals can imitate humans... If the jerking off was done in front of them to imitate

I've seen gay orangatans suck each other at a zoo, once.

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