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Zinjanthropos
Post  Post subject: Vision  |  Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2016 7:54 pm
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Where would we be without it?

I'd like to add something to that but it would only be one opinion of many, influenced a great deal by what I see. Not being the philosophical type, I can only surmise that it is a game of life changer to have vision. I think that philosophical questions/discussions re knowledge, existence, guiding principles etc might be quite different without vision.

Imagine an intelligent creature that's never seen the light of day....is it even possible? What about anything related to light? How can one talk about light when you can't sense it. I suppose something like light to a blind intelligence would be something they could philosophize about. We could tell them about it but they still wouldn't know it and that kind of makes me think about today's philosophers. Are they doing the same thing? Are we still missing the sense(s) that could serve our intelligence to a greater extent??

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marnixR
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2016 9:38 pm
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have you ever read Daniel Galouye's SF novel Dark Universe ?

it's about people who have underground after a nuclear war, and when left (literally) in the dark some of them develop infra-red vision, and others highly sensitive hearing

as for non-intelligent life there's plenty of cave animals who just lose functioning eyes because they're utterly useless in caves without any source of light

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Zinjanthropos
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2016 10:08 pm
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marnixR wrote:
have you ever read Daniel Galouye's SF novel Dark Universe ?

it's about people who have underground after a nuclear war, and when left (literally) in the dark some of them develop infra-red vision, and others highly sensitive hearing

as for non-intelligent life there's plenty of cave animals who just lose functioning eyes because they're utterly useless in caves without any source of light


No I haven't and yes I understand that.

Maybe I should have asked, 'would philosophical thought be different if we did not possess vision?' Is there a link between vision and intelligence? I can't imagine myself saying 'hearing is believing" :)

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marnixR
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Mon Nov 21, 2016 10:23 pm
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only because primates are predominantly visual animals
if you were a bat you would say "hearing is believing"

dolphins tend to be regarded as fairly intelligent animals, and the river dolphins of the Amazon have very poor eyesight because the water is so murky that it's better to use echolocation to get around and find your prey

it would be interesting to see how their intelligence compares with that of e.g. bottlenose dolphins

tbh i don't think intelligence relies solely on visual clues, but it probably would determine what type of intelligence arises
come to think of it, if we were olfactory adept like dogs our intelligence might just be different, but not necessarily less intelligent - it's a bit like adding a new dimension to your perception, it opens pathways to how you express your intelligence

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Zinjanthropos
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:19 am
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marnixR wrote:
if you were a bat you would say "hearing is believing"


Interesting because I would assume that the past evolutionary history of a bat includes a sighted ancestor who could easily have said 'seeing is believing'. What that means in a philosophical sense I can't say. Perhaps whatever your strongest sense is dictates beliefs, I don't know.

Quote:
if we were olfactory adept


A big nose? I imagine an alien race landing on Earth with above average sense of smell having a schnoz that only a Proboscis Monkey could admire. However I don't know if any being can smell its way through space(does space smell?)

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iNow
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:40 am
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Smell is what happens when a cloud of molecules or a gas interacts with the nose. Space is a vacuum. If gas travels at all, it's no longer a vacuum. A vacuum us the absence of gas travel. If the gas is already in your nose or your suit while in space then you can smell it, but otherwise gases won't travel so, no. There is no smell. For similar reasons, there is also no sound in space.

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Zinjanthropos
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Tue Nov 22, 2016 2:56 am
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iNow wrote:
Smell is what happens when a cloud of molecules or a gas interacts with the nose. Space is a vacuum. If gas travels at all, it's no longer a vacuum. A vacuum us the absence of gas travel. If the gas is already in your nose or your suit while in space then you can smell it, but otherwise gases won't travel so, no. There is no smell. For similar reasons, there is also no sound in space.


Thought I'd check it out after asking the question in previous post. Turns out there numerous links to stories of astronauts claims of space having an odor. Most of them say, and I quote ....
Quote:
When astronauts come in from a spacewalk and remove their helmets, they've reported smells of “seared steak,” “hot metal” and “arc welding on their motorbike.”


NASA has gone as far to ask leading scientists to recreate the smell. Don't know if successful or not.

Anyway I put current thread in this subforum to discuss any philosophical aspects pertaining to sense, in particular vision. I suppose that any one of the senses are candidates for a being's dominant sense. Which begs the question, why aren't they all equally at their highest peak for every animal? If every beast was equally equipped sense-wise, then what path would evolution take and why?

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Pong
Post  Post subject: Re: Vision  |  Posted: Wed Nov 30, 2016 4:38 am
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Most animals have a straightforward niche, and do best when they stay on task. Take the pea-hen for example. She's a pecking machine. Her focus should be on the forest floor, scanning for tidbits. So she can grow fatter than her sisters and lay more eggs, and so forth. Distractions aren't helping her. She'd do poorly to have much awareness beyond her narrow occupation. She shouldn't pause or have any bright ideas. Just keep pecking, peahen. Turkeys are most famous for singlemindedness but in my opinion peafowl are "worse".

The male of the species betrays how visually oriented the peahen is. He wants to distract her, so his efforts are visual. She wants to ignore him 99% of the time and just keep pecking, so by evolution she becomes more single-minded and he becomes more distracting. Males of other species might focus courtship in sound or smell - precisely where they best intercept female attention.

If I'm right, then by my "courtship test" humans aren't so visual as cerebral... and emotional. Male suitors are most successful with a combination of humour and social promise. So we're becoming a species of Woody Allens... "blind" to mere physical appearance?


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