Damon Morelli

Forest Grove, OR, United States

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Damon Morelli
Posted about 3 years ago
Juan Enriquez: Will our kids be a different species?
I would really like Juan Enriquez to clarify on this comment board if, when he states that humans are beginning to "directly and deliberately control the evolution" of the species, he believes this proposition is a conscious process, and one that is compatible with evolutionary theory. I am questioning the implication that evolution can be a conscious process, in which a desired outcome can be anticipated. Juan's examples of Autism reflecting evolution at work are more in line with my understanding of evolution. Evolution does not occur because we consciously choose it--that implies determination. Evolution is a constant ongoing process of life at a variety of scales. We are never directly and deliberately in control. The idea that we can anticipate the genetic drift of our species is somewhat mildly arrogant. Excellent presentation Juan Enriquez. I haven't felt compelled to comment on a TED talk in quite some time. Thank you.
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Damon Morelli
Posted about 3 years ago
Regina Dugan: From mach-20 glider to hummingbird drone
Dear Regina Dugan, Are you suggesting that when your team thinks about what "you would do" when you are not constrained by the fear of failure, you all decide that you want to build a flying craft that can reach any point on earth within 60 minutes? This is what your motivates your team? Building vessels that have no practical application except for the delivery of weapon systems (As you said, it would be too hot for a person to travel in). If this is what you come up with when you lower your inhibitions, then you all likely need some serious therapy. Please, take a moment to face the reality that you are trying rationalize and reify your role within the federal military industrial complex.
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Damon Morelli
Posted over 3 years ago
Peter van Uhm: Why I chose a gun
How do you know when violence is legitimate? Democratic constitutional society legitimizes violence? Rwanda was a democratic constitutional republic when the majority Hutus slaughtered (sometimes with military assistance) Tutsis and moderate Hutus. It's not a straight forward argument of good versus bad, right versus wrong. I don't know the answer. Should the U.S. and European forces be in Afghanistan? Are the women and children better or worse off? Are we there for the right reasons? How do we know? There's a big difference between one homogeneous society defending itself against another homogeneous society and sending soldiers abroad. I don't have any answers.
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Damon Morelli
Posted over 3 years ago
Antonio Damasio: The quest to understand consciousness
There are patterns in linguistics, as well as everything else. A pattern is not necessarily sacred. There are patterns of violence given specific conditions. The existence of pink noise seems to be a characteristic of all living systems, but that doesn't necessarily make it sacred.
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Damon Morelli
Posted almost 4 years ago
Mark Pagel: How language transformed humanity
Right off the bat, Pagel erroneously suggests that we can implant specific ideas into other people's mind with our language. This exhibits a fundamental misunderstanding regarding the self-organizing process of language and cognition. Absolutely we intentionally affect and influence others via our linguistic interactions, and the social learning of our species is real, but his suggestion that language evolved to solve a problem is so out-dated it's humorous. Language evolved among us, for us? Language co-opted and adapted to available structures and unities so language could grow. His arrogance is annoying. He is obviously a follower of Chomsky and Pinker. They were essential for getting us to where we are, but we are way passed these outdated understandings of evolution and natural selection and their relation to language. Terrence Deacon would illuminate brightly this guy's misconceptions and conjecture based on unsubstantiated causality.
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Damon Morelli
Posted about 4 years ago
Rob Harmon: How the market can keep streams flowing
How about allowing us to rate the commercials after the presentation? I thought about this because of how BAD and STUPID the Blackberry Touch commercial following this presentation is. When was the last time you saw a professor, or even a presenter on TED, wear fur? This girl, whoever she is, did not inspire me in the least. I thought that TED is challenging its advertisers to create meaningful advertising like thegirleffect.com by Weiden & Kennedy. I wish Rob Harmon and his Bonneville Environment Foundation the best of luck.
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Damon Morelli
Posted over 4 years ago
Sebastian Seung: I am my connectome
He mentioned how our experience within our environment shapes our neural connections (our "connectome"), but then he fails to accommodate the consequences of that fact. If our connectome is dependent upon the external environment, then our cognition is integrally connected to our external environment (i.e., embodied cognition). Maybe he should have had the audience chant, "I am my connectome, and my friends, and my family, and all that other stuff that has at some level catalyzed an action potential and affected my neural connections!"
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Damon Morelli
Posted over 4 years ago
Sebastian Seung: I am my connectome
I'm sure that Sebastian Seung is well aware that we should proceed extremely cautiously regarding the conception of "mis-wiring." Mis-wiring is relative to each individual and relative to larger societal networks. Certain "mis-wirings," such as autism or ADHD or others, may be instrumental in catalyzing larger scale (societal, economic, technological, philosophical) system innovations or niche realizations.