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The concept was first created ca. The book has since been published online. So far we have very little direct knowledge of alien minds -- but we have some fascinating bases for speculation.
There's a story about a psychologist," science fiction writer Murray Leinster once wrote, "who was studying the intelligence of a chimpanzee. He led the chimp into a room full of toys, went out, closed the door and put his eye to the keyhole to see what the chimp was doing. He found himself gazing into a glittering interested brown eye only inches from his own.
The chimp was looking through the keyhole to see what the psychologist was doing. Obviously even a creature that looks vaguely human may, or may not act human. How vastly more difficult must it be for us to understand extraterrestrial beings who may look I like nothing we've ever seen before?
Certainly we shall be at least as surprised by alien behavior as we are by earthly minds. But evolution is even more important than physical appearance, especially where alien psychology—xenopsychology—is concerned.
All living creatures, whether of this world or another, survivors in an endless chain of "winners," organisms whose behavior and sentience allowed them to succeed and increase their numbers.
Intelligence on Earth On Earth, evolution favored voted the appearance of intelligence in two major classes of animal nervous systems, called ganglionic and chordate. It has its own peculiar psychology. The earthworm is typical.
Each of its many segments is almost an individual organism unto itself, having its own set of kidneys, muscles, sensors and so forth. Coordination is achieved by a thin latticework of nerve fibers crisscrossing from side to side and lengthwise.
The ganglionic system resembles a ladder with bulbous neural tissues at the joints. Invertebrate organisms thus are comprised of a collection of sub-brains, each of which controls a separate part of the animal with fairly complete autonomy and no real centralized control.
Sensors and their ganglia tend to cluster nearer the head, making not a true brain as we understand the term but rather a large bundle of distinct fibers. Such a nervous system is highly efficient for responding quickly to stimuli. Each clump of nerve cells becomes expert at some particular function—detecting and passing along sensory information, sweeping a leg or swing in wide uniform arc, opening and closing the jaws in slow munching motions during feeding, and so on.
Might extraterrestrials develop a high ganglionic intelligence that has, never developed on Earth despite hundreds of millions of years of opportunity? Many an evolutionary biologists believe the system is too complicated to scale up in size — invertebrates are much less intelligent than vertebrates, kilogram for kilogram.
Also, ganglionic intelligence may be physically self-limiting. Typical invertebrate nervous systems just have room to accommodate mostly preprogrammed behaviors. Little space is left for growth of surplus neural matter that might eventually evolve into higher intellect.
Finally, the endless cross-connections within the body can become so entangled that they actually begin to strangle other body organs. For example, massive head ganglia ringing the spider's gullet squeeze the throat so tightly that the animal must swallow its food in a thin trickle.
It is hard for us to imagine the mentality of beings with advanced ganglionic intelligence.The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue.
Essay # Characteristics of Language: A language has the following characteristics: 1. Language is a human attribute. 2.
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JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not-for-profit organization helping the academic community use digital technologies to preserve the scholarly record and to advance research and teaching in sustainable ways. Writing a definition essay. A definition essay is an essay concentrated on the explanation of the meaning of a definite term.
The term may be analyzed from the position of one and only meaning and also from the position of subjectivity of the person defining the term.