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Thread: Evolution speculation.

  1. #1 Evolution speculation. 
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    I realize that this is going to sound somewhat strange, so bear with me: is it a possibility that humans aren't the first forms of intelligent lifeforms to have developed on Earth, and that previous sentients are responsible for some of the mass extinctions which have occured? Understand that I don't necessarily think this is true; the idea just occured to me, and I was wondering if anyone knew of anything which definitively disproved, or appeared to support, this idea.

    EDIT: I understand that the fact that ancient petrochemicals from hundreds of millions of years ago are still present today and therefore obviously weren't consumed by previous lifeforms would seem to disprove this idea, but suppose that the hypothetical sentients didn't rely on combustion for energy? If the creatures were, for example, aquatic lifeforms, then they would be more likely to have used electrochemical reactions (the ocean is, after all, basically a giant electrolyte solution). Ancient cephalopods might fit the bill, although the toxicity of copper to them would make constructing a safe electrical cell a bit problematical. Thoughts?

    Oh, and I'm not sure if I'm posting in the right forum. If this shouldn't be placed in here, where exactly should it be located?


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  3. #2  
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    Hmmm.. I thought it was accepted that mass extinctions were caused either by meteors or by severe ice ages. But then again, I can't think of anything that will definitely disprove your theory (or support it). Maybe aliens came down, killed most of the animals, then planted a meteor to cover up their tracks. Whos to say what is right or wrong? Although your idea does seem a little farfetched.


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  4. #3  
    Forum Sophomore CaveatLector's Avatar
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    Define "Intelligent lifeforms."
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    Cogito, ergo doleo.

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  5. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaveatLector
    Define "Intelligent lifeforms."
    Hmm... Maybe "intelligent lifeforms" wasn't the most precise way to put it. What I meant by that rather vague phrase is a species which is able to understand a problem facing it, imagine a tool it could create to fix that problem, build that tool from materials present in its environment, and use simple tools like it to construct more complex/specialized tools which make it easier for the creature to survive. This sort of creature, which I suppose could be better termed a "manipulative intelligence," would have as its main characteristic the ability to drastically alter its environment and the world using tools it had created, not from any instinct, but from its own analysis of what would help it to survive.
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  6. #5  
    Time Lord zinjanthropos's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skraken
    Quote Originally Posted by CaveatLector
    Define "Intelligent lifeforms."
    Hmm... Maybe "intelligent lifeforms" wasn't the most precise way to put it. What I meant by that rather vague phrase is a species which is able to understand a problem facing it, imagine a tool it could create to fix that problem, build that tool from materials present in its environment, and use simple tools like it to construct more complex/specialized tools which make it easier for the creature to survive. This sort of creature, which I suppose could be better termed a "manipulative intelligence," would have as its main characteristic the ability to drastically alter its environment and the world using tools it had created, not from any instinct, but from its own analysis of what would help it to survive.
    The Abyss was a good movie. All that manipulation and control of water was kind of cool.

    Don't think you're theory is correct but no one can discount entirely the possibility of the dinosaurs being hunted to extinction(by whom?). Lord knows our species is familiar with this scenario.
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  7. #6  
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    ya have to wonder i why there are no fosslis? i suppose they could be so deep.

    adn if you go back far enough, they *the intelagant lifeforms - not me judging by my spelling * would be the oil that we are usign today?

    my major stickin point would be that, we can already trace as far back as .. the begining when "something" made those first lifeforms,

    and evolved from them, and we can trace that, sort of...

    but having said that, no proof against your theory, no proof for either, :?
    Stumble on through life.
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  8. #7  
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    Yes... The lack of fossils IS certainly a bit problematic for that idea. On the other hand, intelligent invertebrates (cephalopods, for instance) would be very unlikely to leave any fossils, no matter how many of them there were. Then again, on the OTHER other hand (am I reminding anyone here of Tevye in "Fiddler on the Rooftop?"), one would think that the trace fossils of intelligent life, whether vertebrate or invertebrate, would be quite obvious and easily fossilized, or at least easily preserved... If there was intelligent life in the past, where are the ancient, metallic machines?
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  9. #8  
    Forum Freshman Captain_Anubis's Avatar
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    Well if these theortical 'intelligent lifeforms' were actually centient I'd imagine that they wuld have made some kinds of buildings and ect... I don't think we've found anything like that from a really long time ago.... but maybe all their buildings were spaceships and before we came along they all got bored and went to live on Omicron Persei 8.... who knows.
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