The Naked Scientists

The Naked Scientists Forum

Author Topic: Can you think how evolution/design of human body could be bettered?  (Read 779 times)

Offline Alan McDougall

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1285
  • Thanked: 14 times
    • View Profile
"Source Quora"

We wouldn't have a big right angle at the back of our throat that is so easily capable of causing our death by choking.

Females wouldn't give birth to children through a tiny birth canal, constricting the baby's skull and causing risk of loss of life to mother and child.

Males wouldn't have spermatic ducts that looped up and over our kidney vessels in a nonsensical way that traced our evolutionary history.

We wouldn't have wisdom teeth crowding our mouths.

We wouldn't have our retinas obscured by a mass of blood vessels.

Cancer wouldn't result from cell growth gone haywire.

Equatorial people wouldn't have had to evolve sickle cell trait to make a Faustian bargain to battle malaria.

We wouldn't have problems with our vertebral columns, hips, knees, and feet - all consequences of a switch to bipedal locomotion.

Lactose intolerance wouldn't exist.

We wouldn't get goose bumps when cold or afraid. These are a remnant of our evolutionary past.

The optic nerve wouldn't create a blind spot in our vision.

The optic center in the brain wouldn't be in the farthest part possible from the eyes.

("My one, we would absorb energy directly from sunlight)


 

Online evan_au

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 4130
  • Thanked: 249 times
    • View Profile
Quote from: Alan McDougall
Lactose intolerance wouldn't exist.
Lactose Intolerance seems to be fairly universal in all mammals (except humans), and it doesn't seem to cause them any problems.

It still occurs in some human populations that aren't dairy farmers (as a cause and/or effect).

This capability is better called Lactase persistence. Mutations that occurred in a few locations around the world allowed humans to continue drinking and digesting lactose in milk long after other mammals turn off the lactase gene.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lactase_persistence

It is the people who are lactose intolerant who are not mutated (in this gene).

Quote
Can you think how evolution/design of human body could be bettered?
Most mammals can make all their own Vitamin C - but humans can't. With a little tweak, we could eliminate scurvy.

I think the most interesting case is possibly the sense of smell. More than half of the human smell genes are thought to be mutated and inactive. Enabling these genes would be like changing from black-and-white TV to color. But I think it might have a devastating impact on society - who could stand to live in close proximity to our stuffy and polluted cities?
See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olfactory_receptor#Diversity
 

Offline Alan McDougall

  • Neilep Level Member
  • ******
  • Posts: 1285
  • Thanked: 14 times
    • View Profile
Quote from: Alan McDougall
Lactose intolerance wouldn't exist.
Lactose Intolerance seems to be fairly universal in all mammals (except humans), and it doesn't seem to cause them any problems.

It still occurs in some human populations that aren't dairy farmers (as a cause and/or effect).

This capability is better called Lactase persistence. Mutations that occurred in a few locations around the world allowed humans to continue drinking and digesting lactose in milk long after other mammals turn off the lactase gene.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lactase_persistence

It is the people who are lactose intolerant who are not mutated (in this gene).

Quote
Can you think how evolution/design of human body could be bettered?
Most mammals can make all their own Vitamin C - but humans can't. With a little tweak, we could eliminate scurvy.

I think the most interesting case is possibly the sense of smell. More than half of the human smell genes are thought to be mutated and inactive. Enabling these genes would be like changing from black-and-white TV to color. But I think it might have a devastating impact on society - who could stand to live in close proximity to our stuffy and polluted cities?
See: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olfactory_receptor#Diversity

Great and very interesting response! Thanks
Alan
 

Offline IAMREALITY

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 275
  • Thanked: 10 times
    • View Profile
("My one, we would absorb energy directly from sunlight)

But then we'd be green... Ewww!!! lol

I wonder what tanning would be like if we were green... would we get simply darker green??  Or if our skin allowed photosynthesis would we be making use of those harmful rays and therefore tanning would no longer be our bodies defense mechanism? 

But hmmm, what parts of human evolution can be bettered...   Lemme think of a few...

...Ok, I'm back.  Here are mine:

We'd have genes that allowed us to process cholesterol in much better ways so that we could eat whatever the heck we wanted without risk of heart disease.

The genes that allow for critical thinking skills and objectivity would be more hard coded and consistent so that there weren't so many ignoramuses walking amongst us that wreak so much devastation on the planet and pain to others as a direct product of their ignorance.

Emotional states would be more advanced to where mental strength and ability to handle adversity were more constant traits that were there from birth in all.  This one is one of the most important ones to me and that I find myself wishing for often; since it is the lack of strength and ability to handle adversity that I find to be responsible for what I consider to be human kind's greatest weakness and flaw; and that's its psychological need for religion, the need to invent a god in order for most to feel complete.  This need to invent a best friend that loves you unconditionally and is always there to guide you and help you have strength, so that you never feel alone nor have to feel like there's any challenge in which you don't have this friend there with you to help you get through, that in your moments of weakness you can rely on, talk to, communicate with, and feel a bond with.  When really the whole reason the species needs this god is because they're too mentally weak overall to handle the quite simple and straightforward thought that they are merely on their own, that things are what they are and that there's no one listening, no best friend eternally there loving them unconditionally and helping to shape and guide their path, that Circumstance is chaos and things happen because they happen.  That the child died in the fiery wreck not because it was their time to go and god had a purpose for them, but instead merely because the car they were in had been going too fast and due to physics the tires lost traction around the curve and they slammed head on into a tree.  It is this mental weakness, this fear of being alone, this hard reality to handle that we're on our own and that we have very little control sometimes over things that happen, and that however we handle it and persevere through it is on our own merits and capability, that is responsible for this need for a god.  So if our emotional centers became more superior and advanced to where this strength was found from birth; this ability to handle Circumstance on our own and handle the concept of having to, then religion would be hopefully eradicated and one of the most significant barriers to our advancement as a species would be removed; one of the greatest ignorances of human kind, one of the greatest causes of death, destruction and hardship upon others would be removed, and hopefully then intellect, rather than nonsensical faith, would rule the day.  I can't think of one thing that would do more for the betterment of humankind...



« Last Edit: 22/06/2016 16:04:57 by IAMREALITY »
 

Offline IAMREALITY

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 275
  • Thanked: 10 times
    • View Profile
Some other ones:

Evolving past whatever reasons were there for us to sense itching...  I understand why we feel hot, cold, and pain.  For the life of me I can't understand why we need to sense an itch.  And on top of that, I'd wager it has the strongest impact on our brain of all the sensations.  It literally can drive you to the point of irrational insanity.  I mean, even something extremely painful you end up being able to tolerate after a bit and deal with, without going completely out of your mind.  Yet, that itch on your nose, or eye, while you're laying there comfortably?  Within ten seconds you break and have no choice but to scratch it, almost like when you hold your breath and at first you think you can do it forever, till before long you're exhaling after having lost all control and willpower.  Never quite understood why an itch can hold such power over your mind, and yeah, I would LOVE if we evolved past that!

I know this one will be odd.. but somehow evolving to where we could shoot beams of energy out of our eyes like lasers.  I've dreamed since I was a kid of being able to shoot lasers out of my eyes lol.  Eye lasers would friggin rock.

Also, evolving to be able to fly.  Cause flying would be awesome.

Oh, oh, another one!!  Evolving to where our tailbone goes bye bye!  My damn folding tanning chaise lounge legs collapsed right out from under me yesterday and I slammed into the pavement tailbone first.  Holy hell is it uncomfortable sitting here right now still...  Hurts like all damn hell!  Stupid friggin tailbone...
 

Online tkadm30

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 934
  • Thanked: 7 times
    • View Profile
    • IsotopeSoftware
Immortality is my perception of the perfect human body. Perhaps advancements in gene therapy could one day extend the life of humans, through cancer and diseases elimination. Biological immortality would have the advantage of discovering new forms of knowledge, and would benefit humanity through evolution of our consciousness.

I perceive life extension as a critical science in our understanding of aging. How could we evolve the human body into a indefinite lifespan? I personally believe aging is dependent on your attitude towards your perception of life. Research even reported that a negative attitude could have a direct impact on your health! 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_extension     

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160129134411.htm
 

Offline IAMREALITY

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 275
  • Thanked: 10 times
    • View Profile
Immortality is my perception of the perfect human body. Perhaps advancements in gene therapy could one day extend the life of humans, through cancer and diseases elimination. Biological immortality would have the advantage of discovering new forms of knowledge, and would benefit humanity through evolution of our consciousness.

I perceive life extension as a critical science in our understanding of aging. How could we evolve the human body into a indefinite lifespan? I personally believe aging is dependent on your attitude towards your perception of life. Research even reported that a negative attitude could have a direct impact on your health! 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_extension     

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160129134411.htm

I guess my thoughts on this would be, that becoming a father and everything about being one since has been the greatest joy and purpose I've had on this planet.  But with immortality comes the fact that we no longer would ultimately be able to bear children, because there's no way this planet would ever be able to sustain an immortal and increasingly growing population.  In fact, the billions we already have is far too much to be sustainable.  So though I agree with you that there would be so much value to the acquisition of knowledge we'd be able to have, I see a sadness in its not being able to be passed on to anyone new.  Our society would become static, and our existence would soon lose much meaning and purpose.

So I guess, if I was to be dreadfully honest while leaving myself way open for harsh judgment?  I'd have to attest that my desire would be for evolution to only make ME immortal, while the rest were left to die as normal lol.  Is that wrong of me? hehehe
 

Offline chiralSPO

  • Global Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1879
  • Thanked: 145 times
    • View Profile
Better for what?

Females wouldn't give birth to children through a tiny birth canal, constricting the baby's skull and causing risk of loss of life to mother and child.

It has been proposed that our singular advantage over other primates is due to the fact that our children are born before their brains have reached a critical developmental stage (which would cause newborn's heads to be even larger), and this allows us to develop more in response to external stimuli and be smarter. This is directly linked with the unfavorable ratio of the head to birth canal (which is reduced with respect to other primates to accommodate bipedal locomotion)

I suppose it might be better to be as fast as a horse, with the upper body strength of an orangutan, eyes (at least 3 so we can get 3D paralax and maximal view angle) that can detect a larger range of the EM spectrum with better resolution, as well as seeing the polarization of light (like mantis shrimp and cuttlefish) and detecting the Earth's magnetic field (like some birds), significantly better processing power in our brains (why have only one?) etc. etc. etc.

But then if we could do all of that, we might never be able to stop eating...

Oh, I also want the ability to back up my consciousness and be able to regenerate all parts my body indefinitely, painlessly and with perfect fidelity!
 

Offline chiralSPO

  • Global Moderator
  • Neilep Level Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 1879
  • Thanked: 145 times
    • View Profile
Immortality is my perception of the perfect human body. Perhaps advancements in gene therapy could one day extend the life of humans, through cancer and diseases elimination. Biological immortality would have the advantage of discovering new forms of knowledge, and would benefit humanity through evolution of our consciousness.

I perceive life extension as a critical science in our understanding of aging. How could we evolve the human body into a indefinite lifespan? I personally believe aging is dependent on your attitude towards your perception of life. Research even reported that a negative attitude could have a direct impact on your health! 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_extension     

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/01/160129134411.htm

I guess my thoughts on this would be, that becoming a father and everything about being one since has been the greatest joy and purpose I've had on this planet.  But with immortality comes the fact that we no longer would ultimately be able to bear children, because there's no way this planet would ever be able to sustain an immortal and increasingly growing population.  In fact, the billions we already have is far too much to be sustainable.  So though I agree with you that there would be so much value to the acquisition of knowledge we'd be able to have, I see a sadness in its not being able to be passed on to anyone new.  Our society would become static, and our existence would soon lose much meaning and purpose.

So I guess, if I was to be dreadfully honest while leaving myself way open for harsh judgment?  I'd have to attest that my desire would be for evolution to only make ME immortal, while the rest were left to die as normal lol.  Is that wrong of me? hehehe

My thoughts exactly!
 

The Naked Scientists Forum


 

SMF 2.0.10 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines
SMFAds for Free Forums