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Design A Human

  1. Nov 17, 2009 #1
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  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 17, 2009 #2
  4. Nov 17, 2009 #3


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    Most of the reasons that human features are "incorrect" is because it has to work around previous evolutionary developments. You'd have to start from scratch and then what you get wouldn't be a human.

    But in any case, Scientific American once had an article on what 'ideal' humans would look like. Basically, hobbits with reversed knee joints. I don't think they were looking at it from a "surviving on the savannah" viewpoint, but for what would be medically best for modern humans.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2009
  5. Nov 17, 2009 #4


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    This is ultimately going to result in a stale mate based on compromises and the multi-purpose nature of creatures in general and humans in particular. Everything is a weighing of advantages and disadvantages.

    I'll pick one at random:

    That very adhesion is what allows us to grasp things. Just ask Dr. No if he thinks palm adhesion is useless. Oh wait, you can't. He's dead. Ask James Bond then.

    It is my assertion that ALL modifications will come down to the question of what (necessarily subjective) priorities that "the designer" places on its subject's livelihood.
  6. Nov 18, 2009 #5
    And what do you have to say about things like the human prostate gland?
  7. Nov 18, 2009 #6
    What exactly is your point? Are you saying that given what you know you could design a human that is better than what we have now, therefore we could not have been designed because you think you would make these adjustments to gain what you perceive as advantages?

    I don't think that a lack of higher ability is a argument for the lack of design.

    I wonder if this thread is going to get locked...
  8. Nov 18, 2009 #7
    Points like this can neither prove nor disprove an intelligent creator. First, the creator may have been constrained, or simply he liked what he created the way it was 4.4 billion yeras ago. Or maybe he was an idiot and made mistakes here and there. Or maybe, if the intelligent creator was anything remotely similar to us, he might be long dead. Fact is, for the most part, our bodies are very well made, it's an amazing feat that 100 trillion cells can work in perfect sync for more than 70 years(and each cell is an ultra complex piece of machinery by itself).
  9. Nov 18, 2009 #8


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    I don't think it's meant to. I don't think it's about that at all. I take the thread as simply an entertaining thought-experiment in human engineering.
  10. Nov 18, 2009 #9
    It's hard to design something that doesn't have a purpose...
  11. Nov 18, 2009 #10


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    That's exactly my point when I say: "ALL modifications will come down to the question of what (necessarily subjective) priorities that "the designer" places on its subject's livelihood."

    We can give it purposes such as eating and procreating but we're still going to have to make subjective calls about priorities.
  12. Nov 18, 2009 #11
    For this thread we'll assume there's no supernatural forces in the universe or if there is any superstition then it does not interfere at all. The idea of this thread was to list ways we think the human body can be improved.

    The designer is defined as you, the person posting/reading the thread.
  13. Nov 18, 2009 #12


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    In case anyone is curious here is the SciAm Article:

    http://eebweb.arizona.edu/Michod/Classes/182/182%202006/Better%20human%20design.pdf [Broken]
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  14. Nov 18, 2009 #13
    Well, if we are changing the object of the post...

    I think humans should have a rudimentary eye on or in their hand. That way when a soldier needs to look around a corner, he isn't exposing the most sensitive part of the body.
  15. Nov 18, 2009 #14
    For some reason, the eyes of most (if not all) creatures reside very close to the brain. We should explore the reasons why evolution has positioned this feature before we begin prototype testing.

    I think we should focus on reinforcing the spinal column and knee joint assembly.
  16. Nov 18, 2009 #15

    Eye-sight is crucial. Perhaps shorter nerves(eye-brain connections) proved more resilient and durable in the long run, giving better survival chances?
  17. Nov 18, 2009 #16


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    Check this out:
    http://pharyngula.org/index/weblog/comments/jellyfish_eyes/ [Broken]

    Jellyfish don't have brains.
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  18. Dec 27, 2009 #17
    The point of the thread was simply to do a thought experiment to imagine a human with some changes in its biology, if you didn't want to participate in sharing your thoughts on such a thought experiment you could have otherwise refrained from posting.
    Lack of design? This thread has nothing to do with theology or intelligent design.
    If certain types of thoughts make you uncomfortable then fine but that's no reason to be rude about it.

    Anyway, I'm sure we can say that in a sense that humans are defying nature to some extent due to our ability to communicate and build upon previous information. An example of this is how humans have built computers which can do calculations beyond human ability and how we use contraception to prevent pregnancy.

    I'm sure you guys won't say that genetic engineering is a ridiculous idea, considering much of the world's food supply is genetically engineered(although I do accept the argument that genetically modifying a human is going to take a lot more time). It's estimated that in a few decades people will be able to sequence their genome for just $1000.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2009
  19. Dec 27, 2009 #18


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    I'd change the human body so that it contains as few moving parts as possible. The current Rube Goldberg design of 100 billion cells working together is just ludicrous; something's bound to go wrong. Just replace the organs with mechanical devices with the appropriate redundancies and have a repair team to fix any problems. Screw DNA and keep the information in a more secure place. There will be no cancer, viral infections, bacterial infections, Alzheimer's disease, multiple sclerosis, or any other disease where some part of the 100-billion-cell body goes haywire.
  20. Dec 27, 2009 #19
    I'd get rid of pubic hair. I honestly don't see the point. Especially why there's so much of it.
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