Ep 240: Of mice and men and minds



Of mice and men and minds

We’ve been looking and different unusually clever creatures—ants, bees, crows, octopus, elephants, whales, sea otters, dogs, racoons and monkeys. Along the way I was hoping to figure out some general idea of how intelligence arises from the chaos that is our universe. I share what I’ve come up with with Phil, and talk about what we could do to some unsuspecting mice to test some of the notion. Join us as we look at one last unusually intelligent animal—the human.

Here’s a study that looked at the different numbers of neurons in different mice of the same species.

When larger brains do not have more neurons: increased numbers of cells are compensated by decreased average cell size across mouse individuals

Here are the episodes about how the human brain develops before we’re born.

Ep 195: Baby’s brain before birth

Ep 196: How neurons find their home

Here’s a short list of some early primates.

Five Early Primates You Should Know

Here’s an overview of primate evolution

70 Million Years of Primate Evolution

Here’s an article about the idea that learning to cook is what fueled the explosive growth in our brain size seen over the last 2-millean years or so.

What Makes Us Human? Cooking, Study Says

Here’s an article on the beginnings of cooking.

Every human culture includes cooking – this is how it began

Here’s an article on a cave site that looks like fire was being used around one-million years ago.

Human Ancestors Tamed Fire Earlier Than Thought





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