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Bickerton D.,University of Hawaii at Manoa | Szathmary E.,Eotvos Lorand University | Szathmary E.,Parmenides Center for the Study of Thinking | Szathmary E.,Institute for Advanced Study
BMC Evolutionary Biology | Year: 2011

The emergence of language and the high degree of cooperation found among humans seems to require more than a straightforward enhancement of primate traits. Some triggering episode unique to human ancestors was likely necessary. Here it is argued that confrontational scavenging was such an episode. Arguments for and against an established confrontational scavenging niche are discussed, as well as the probable effects of such a niche on language and co-operation. Finally, several possible directions for future research are suggested. © 2011 Bickerton and Szathmáry; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source


Zintzaras E.,Institute for Advanced Study | Zintzaras E.,University of Thessaly | Zintzaras E.,Tufts University | Santos M.,Institute for Advanced Study | And 4 more authors.
Journal of Theoretical Biology | Year: 2010

How to design an "evolvable" artificial system capable to increase in complexity? Although Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection obviously offers a firm foundation, little hope of success seems to be expected from the explanatory adequacy of modern evolutionary theory, which does a good job at explaining what has already happened but remains practically helpless at predicting what will occur. However, the study of the major transitions in evolution clearly suggests that increases in complexity have occurred on those occasions when the conflicting interests between competing individuals were partly subjugated. This immediately raises the issue about "levels of selection" in evolutionary biology, and the idea that multi-level selection scenarios are required for complexity to emerge. After analyzing the dynamical behaviour of competing replicators within compartments, we show here that a proliferation of differentiated catalysts and/or improvement of catalytic efficiency of ribozymes can potentially evolve in properly designed artificial cells where the strong internal competition between the different species of replicators is somewhat prevented (i.e., by choosing them with equal probability). Experimental evolution in these systems will likely stand as beautiful examples of artificial adaptive systems, and will provide new insights to understand possible evolutionary paths to the evolution of metabolic complexity. © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. Source


Filk T.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Filk T.,Parmenides Center for the Study of Thinking
Foundations of Physics | Year: 2013

In this article I investigate several possibilities to define the concept of "temporal non-locality" within the standard framework of quantum theory. In particular, I analyze the notions of "temporally non-local states", "temporally non-local events" and "temporally non-local observables". The idea of temporally non-local events is already inherent in the standard formalism of quantum mechanics, and Basil Hiley recently defined an operator in order to measure the degree of such a temporal non-locality. The concept of temporally non-local states enters as soon as "clock-representing states" are introduced in the context of special and general relativity. It is discussed in which way temporally non-local measurements may find an interesting application for experiments which test temporal versions of Bell inequalities. © 2012 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Source


Atmanspacher H.,Institute for Frontier Areas of Psychology | Filk T.,Institute for Frontier Areas of Psychology | Filk T.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Filk T.,Parmenides Center for the Study of Thinking
Journal of Consciousness Studies | Year: 2012

This contribution addresses major distinctions between the notions of determinism, causation, and prediction, as they are typically used in the sciences. Formally, this can be elegantly achieved by two ingredients: (i) the distinction of ontic and epistemic states of a system, and (ii) temporal symmetry breakings based on the mathematical concept of the affine time group. Key aspects of the theory of deterministically chaotic systems together with historical quotations from Laplace, Maxwell, and Poincaré provide significant illustrations. An important point of various discussions in consciousness studies (notably about 'mental causation' and 'free agency'), the alleged 'causal closure of the physical', will be analyzed on the basis of the affine time group and the breakdown of its symmetries. © Imprint Academic 2011. Source


Atmanspacher H.,Institute for Frontier Areas of Psychology | Filk T.,Institute for Frontier Areas of Psychology | Filk T.,Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg | Filk T.,Parmenides Center for the Study of Thinking
Journal of Consciousness Studies | Year: 2012

Temporally non-local measurements - single measurements yielding information about the state of a system at different instances - may provide a way to observe non-classical Behaviour in mental systems. The signature for such Behaviour is a violation of temporal Bell inequalities. We present such inequalities applicable to scenarios with two alternating mental states, such as in the perception of ambiguous figures. We indicate empirical options for testing temporal Bell inequalities, and speculate about possible explanations in case these inequalities are indeed violated. © Imprint Academic 2011. Source

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