Tagged: evolution

Biological research by Core Alum Martha Muñoz

Core alumna Martha Muñoz has recently been involved in some very interesting evolutionary research! Here the Core has laid out some of the information Martha provides on her own page: I am studying how behavior can simultaneously impede and impel evolution in different traits in the lizard, Anolis cybotes, a species that ranges from sea level […]

The ‘hard problem’ of consciousness

Consciousness. What is it? The Core cannot say. However, an article by Michael Graziano for Aeon Magazine makes some interesting claims. Here is an extract: Many thinkers have approached consciousness from a first-person vantage point, the kind of philosophical perspective according to which other people’s minds seem essentially unknowable. And yet… we spend a lot of […]

The ‘Histomap’ Of Evolution

Relating to CC106′s study of biodiversity is a 1932 ‘histomap’ by John B. Sparks portraying evolution’s progress “for ten thousand million years”:                                                       To read criticism of this ‘histomap’, […]

CC106: The Sound of Music

Today, February 5th, Biology Professor Jelle Atema (Doctorandus, University of Utrecht (Netherlands); PhD, University of Michigan), held a lecture titled “The sound of music: frog calls and the design of music halls“, for the Core class CC106. CC106 is designed to round out students’ exploration of the natural sciences by focusing on the science of life. The professors […]

Analects of the Core: Lane on hunger prolonging life

Expanding further on the works studied in CC106, here is the next analect from Nick Lane’s Life Ascending: The Great Inventions of Evolution: We may not enjoy the fact much, but we’ve recognized since the early 1920′s that going moderately hungry prolongs life. It’s called calorie restriction. Rats fed a balanced diet, but with about […]

Robert Dorit on re-reading Darwin

For almost two centuries, Charles Darwin and his theories have been studied, criticized, and validated by the scientific community and yet, to this day controversy continues to surround his work. To try and address the continued controversies of Darwin’s work, scholar Robert Dorit re-analyzes the Origin of Species in terms of time and its importance […]

EnCore Book Club: Tonight!

Tonight is the perfect chance for Core alumni to come together at the EnCore book club and recapture the excitement of being a bright-eyed and bushy-tailed Core student again with intellectually provocative discourse. Join the discussion at the BU Alumni Lounge, 595 Commonwealth Avenue, at 6:30 PM, whether you are a returning participant or are […]

CC106: The monkeys are at it again

Do you see them? Those monkeys are banging away at their typewriters, trying to type out the complete works of Shakespeare. Every time there’s a problem involving randomness, the monkeys get called into action. But these are not your average monkeys. No, these are gedanken monkeys. They can madly type 24 hours a day, seven […]

Analects of the Core: Lane on evolution of cellular complexity

Mitochondria are a silly place to store genes.  They are often glibly called the powerhouses of  the cell, but the parallel is quite exact.  Mitochondrial membranes generate an electric charge, operating across a few millionths of a millimetre, with the same voltage as a bolt of lightning, a thousand times more powerful than domestic writing.  […]

Analects of the Core: Lane on eukaryotes and mitochondrial jumping genes

The chimeric ancestor of the eukaryotes apparently succumbed to an invasion of jumping genes from its mitochondria. – Nick Lane, in his discussion of the evolution of cellular complexity, page 115, in Life Ascending: The Ten Great Inventions of Evolution, a book now studied in CC106: Biodiversity