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Thread: Why havn't our eyes kept up with our brain?

  1. #1 Why havn't our eyes kept up with our brain? 
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    A brain can conceive things far beyond what eyes can see. Why? Why did nature make it so that our brains advance so much faster than our ability to percieve what our brain considers. People have figured out that there is no real color, we just see color. So why can our brain conceive and understand this fact while our eyes refuse to follow suit?

    Any input would be awesome.


    I'm always confused.
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  3. #2 Re: Why havn't our eyes kept up with our brain? 
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    A brain can conceive things far beyond what eyes can see. Why? .
    Because brains are for conceiving things and eyes are for seeing. Legs can carry a brain many miles. A brain, by itself, can do bugger all.
    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    Why did nature make it so that our brains advance so much faster than our ability to percieve what our brain considers.
    Our eyes are a sensory device. They evolved to detect external stimuli. They react to what is there, not to what is not there, or to what might be there, or could be there, or would nice to be there. They react to what is there.
    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    People have figured out that there is no real color, we just see color. So why can our brain conceive and understand this fact while our eyes refuse to follow suit?
    There are varying wavelengths of light. Our eyes detect these varying wavelengths. The systems (eyes, nerves, brain) then interpret these detected wavelength variations as colour. We perceive colour because it is a very useful way of interpreting our visual sensory input.


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  4. #3  
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    Well, you have to conceive something before you can create it. Naturally, this means that our ability to do or see what we can envision or imagine will always have to trail behind.

    Biology, especially, advances much more slowly than our ability to think of solutions. Probably humanity won't evolve to be more intelligent than we are. We'll simply start augmenting our own brains.
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  5. #4  
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    in animals in the natural world you could argue the contrary is far more important, in order to survive, the brain must keep up with the eye!!!!
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  6. #5  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    This is misleading thinking. There is no 'keeping up' of anything. The organism is either more fit (in which case it is likely to survive and reproduce), or less fit (in which case it is less likely to survive and reproduce). It is the combination of features/behaviour of the entire organism that generally determine survival, not any specific. I just don't see it as meaningful to talk about one feature 'keeping up' with another.

    Disabuse me if you will.
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  7. #6  
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    in fact, the discrepancy between eye and brain is even more pronounced than you think : e.g. on most occasions you don't notice that you have a blind spot in your eye where the optical nerve goes through because normally the brain does a pretty good job at smoothing over the deficiency

    on the other hand, don't overrate the brain : when you're being tricked by an optical illusion it's not the eye that fails but the algorithm the brain uses to analyse the optical impulses it receives
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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  8. #7  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope zinjanthropos's Avatar
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    Don't know why but this thread made me think of this:

    www.c4vct.com/kym/humor/whoboss.htm
    All that belongs to human understanding, in this deep ignorance and obscurity, is to be skeptical, or at least cautious; and not to admit of any hypothesis, whatsoever; much less, of any which is supported by no appearance of probability...Hume
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  9. #8 Re: Why havn't our eyes kept up with our brain? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    A brain can conceive things far beyond what eyes can see. Why? Why did nature make it so that our brains advance so much faster than our ability to percieve what our brain considers. People have figured out that there is no real color, we just see color. So why can our brain conceive and understand this fact while our eyes refuse to follow suit?

    Any input would be awesome.
    The computer analogy with our brain is classical

    In this analogy, it's obvious that without acquisition devices : microphone, keyboard, DVD reader, a computer is totally useless.

    Our eyes, our ears and more generally our senses are our acquisitions devices.
    But granted to science (wich is a now a collective pattern : I can't make a computer out of nothing on a desert island, even if I am a supra genius) we have built new acquisitions devices (cameras ...)
    This acquisations devices have expanded our senses, and thus the comprehension of the world nearby.
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  10. #9  
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    Has anybody noticed this is in the wrong section?
    Whence comes this logic: no evidence = false?

    http://www.atheistthinktank.net/thinktank/index.php

    Theists welcome.
    ___________
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  11. #10  
    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    you mean to say you don't use your eyes or brain to do astronomy ?
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." (Philip K. Dick)
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  12. #11  
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    Zinjan, that was a hilarious link.

    Now that I think about it, this is probably the wrong forum for the question, I guess it should go in philosophy.

    I guess I just asked this question out of frustration. We can contemplate so many amazing thoughts but seem to be so limited by our senses. I mean, in our heads we have a certain understanding of the world but our eyes are trapped in some optical illusion. Our eyes can only see when there is light, but it's when I close my eyes, that's when my imagination really seems to blow my socks off.

    I posted the question in this forum because I always thought of cosmology as the study of the origin of the universe. But when I have so many questions about the way I percieve the universe, it's hard for me to ignore the idea that what I see could be limited/distorted. The viewer is as important as what's being viewed right?

    Oh and I realized I did not spell (haven't) correctly in the title.

    Anyway, thanks for the input.
    I'm always confused.
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  13. #12  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by scientstphilosophertheist
    Has anybody noticed this is in the wrong section?
    Not until now. 8)
    Thanks. Moved to Biology.
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  14. #13  
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    Okay, I posted this question before it was properly formulated in my head. Let me try this again, this time with some supporting text.

    What I was trying to ask was "why is the universe coded?" rather than "why haven't our eyes kept up with our brain?"

    Originally I was confused as to why we see the universe one way but know it exists in a different way. The universe is coded and scientists are trying to figure out the code.

    I've been reading Paul Davies' The Mind of God and I just got to a part where the same question I asked is asked, but in a much better way.

    From the book: "In a letter to M. Solovine dated 7 May 1952, Einstein wrote of the always problematical connection between the world of ideas and that which can be experienced. Einstein stresses that there is 'no logical path' between the theoretical concepts and our observations. One is brought into concordance with the other by an 'extra-logical (intuitive)' procedure (80)."

    So let me give this question another shot and I think it actually is a cosmological question.

    Why would the universe come into existance, create a being that can contemplate the universe, and then give the answers in code? Why not just show us what is actually going on?

    Any input would be great. Thank you.
    I'm always confused.
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  15. #14  
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    I think you are approaching that from an intelligent design type of angle, if you believe in a deity who designed the world you may well ask that. I think you are applying a bit too much purpose to the universe!

    However the answer lies in evolution we have evolved in such a way which maximises our survival, we did not come into being with any intention of perceiving the entire universe it is just "luck" that we did. To evolve in such a way that intuitively comprehends the entire universe when you trace back our origins is not only probably impossible, it is ridiculous! An organism is only interested in its immediate environment in which to survive and reproduce, an ability to perceive a phenomenon eg soun, light IR radiation etc will only come into being if it improves the survival of the species.

    Keep in mind there are animals with senses that we dont have which helps them o perceive the universe differently, eg bats use sonar, some bees see in UV and rats have a vomeronasal organ which gives them a more acute sense of smell (some organisms have a similar organ which they can use to direct their motion, it may act as their eyes!)
    There are many variations on how different species perceive the universe which we could not possibly imagine.
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  16. #15  
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    Robbie,
    Just want to say that I don't believe in any diety or "God" and I'm not a religious person.

    Are you a believer of the parallel universes (multiverse I think it's called, not sure) theory? The idea that there are an infinite number of universes and we are just one that by chance developed human life.

    Even if this existence is just "by chance" why then have a code that we slowly break? Why would the universe make it so that its secrets, its laws, can be uncovered like they are? Even if it is all chance, doesn't this seem kind of odd?

    Again I don't think there is some "God" behind this, but it does seem strange to me that the universe appears to be one way to the visible eye but on varying scales completely different. And as we discover new scales on which to study the universe, more and more secrets are revealed.

    Just "by chance" sounds like a bit of a cop out to me, like people who say "God did it."

    Why do we exist? Because of chance or because of some "God" both sound like unfulfilling answers to me. If you are in the multiverse (I hope that's what it's called) camp, then how did the infinite number of universes come into existence in the first place? At the neverending (or so it would seem) string of why's is "Just chance?"
    I'm always confused.
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  17. #16  
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    But then if you dont believe in a god you surely believe that everything is random, and to assign reason to the universe as if it has secrets which we must try to uncover. If you believe it is just chance then there is o reason to think that we should ave any special criteria (eg understanding the universe) as part of our existence.

    Also if you ask why we are here you must acknowledge the irony that if things were any different you would not be here to ask such a question. But seriously I think thats something you will have to answer yourself! I dont think science has the answer quite yet.
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  18. #17  
    Universal Mind John Galt's Avatar
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    I think I may need to move this again to philosophy. :?
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  19. #18 Re: Why havn't our eyes kept up with our brain? 
    Forum Cosmic Wizard spuriousmonkey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    A brain can conceive things far beyond what eyes can see. Why? Why did nature make it so that our brains advance so much faster than our ability to percieve what our brain considers.
    This is just an opinion isn't it.

    Quote Originally Posted by MatTron
    People have figured out that there is no real color, we just see color. So why can our brain conceive and understand this fact while our eyes refuse to follow suit?
    Eyes don't have brains.

    Eyes are actually partly part of the brain. Technically you are saying the brain can conceive things while our brain can't.

    The brain is specialized. Some areas work on understanding the input. Some parts work on making 'sense' of the input. Some areas work on putting a response together. Some parts make a response.

    Colour is still real. Eyes can still see colour. It's just not called colour. It's called being excited by light of certain wavelengths, and having complex feedback loops, negative and positive just beyond the receptors to confirm, reinforce, inhibit whatever signal comes in on the receptor, cluster of receptors etc.

    Hence I do not understand your position. It seems to be based on opinion and not fact.
    "Kill them all and let God sort them out."

    - Arnaud Amalric

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  20. #19  
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    Okay, let me try this again.

    Forget the original question. New question (same question inside my head though).

    Why is it that humans discover bits of information (bits of truth I think is what scientists would call it) small bites at a time like we are uncovering a mystery? Why don't we know everything or know nothing at all about the universe and what came before it?
    I'm always confused.
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  21. #20  
    Forum Ph.D. Cat1981(England)'s Avatar
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    Perhaps there was simple no evolutionary need for our eyes to be any quicker.
    Eat Dolphin, save the Tuna!!!!
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