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William Calvin

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How Brains Think : Evolving Intelligence, Then and Now
coverThe Cerebral Code : Thinking a Thought in the Mosaics of the Mind  by William H. Calvin.   

Few philosophers today attempt a nonmaterialist explanation of consciousness, but even materialist explanations get stuck at the mysterious boundary where thoughts arise from synapses. The Cerebral Code offers a physiological model of the brain's thought processes, albeit in a highly technical presentation. William Calvin, overly glib at times, tries hard to present his new hypothesis for the workings of higher intellectual functions in easy-to-understand metaphors and plain language. And while the technical difficulty of the topic makes this a daunting read, the cogent neurological model of human cognition--dreaming, problem solving, and creative thinking--is rewarding. Anyone who wishes to thoroughly understand consciousness should not ignore this book. 

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William H. Calvin:  The River That Flows Uphill
Full Text online

Table of Contents:

bullet

PREFACE Prologue
Navajo Reservation: Where Did Humans Come From?

bulletDay 1
Mile 0  Lee's Ferry: The Lizards Are Doing Pushups Again
Mile 4  Navajo Bridge: Of Clever Crows, Ravens, and Gulls
Mile 8   Badger Rapid: Life as a Staircase of Quiescence and Turbulence
Mile 17 House Rock Rapid: The Evolution of Feathers
Mile 21 North Canyon Camp: The Big Bang and the Condensation of Earth
bulletDay 2
Mile 22 The Roaring Twenties: Descent into Layer-Cake Geology
Mile 29 Silver Grotto: The Light at the End of the Swim
Mile 30 Giotto's Tower: Parachuting Cats to the Rescue
Mile 31 South Canyon: The Peopling of the World
bulletDay 3
Mile 33 Redwall Cavern: Roll On, Colorado, Roll On
Mile 39 Damsite: Beaver Instincts and the Salt of the Earth
Mile 47 Saddle Canyon: How Did Animals Become Smart?
Mile 52 Nankoweap Ruins: The Anasazi and the Supernova
bulletDay 4
Mile 61 Azure Confluence: The Colorado Matter and Meteor Extinctions
Mile 64 The Great Unconformity: Sacred Hopi Salt Mines
Mile 66 Furnace Flats: How Was the Grand Canyon Carved?
Mile 71 Overlooking Unkar Delta:
                     An Eclipse of the Moon at an Indian Ruin
bulletDay 5
Mile 71 Cardenas Creek: Population Ecology and Freedom
Mile 77 Inner Gorge: Bootstrapping through Fluctuation
Mile 84 Clear Creek: Early Earth and the Origins of Life
Mile 88 Phantom Ranch: In Limbo
Mile 92 Monument Creek: Hit-or-Miss Toolmaking and the Secret Necklace
bulletDay 6
Mile 95 Hermit Rapid: Neural Templates for Reading and Writing
Mile 99 Crystal Rapid: Of Floods and Fools
Mile 104 Onyx Rapid: The Mental Image of a Hawk
Mile 109 Bass Camp: A Canyon Thunderstorm
bulletDay 7
Mile 109 Powell Plateau: Islands and Evolution
Mile 116 Elves Chasm: Design by Change Order
Mile 118 Stephen Aisle: Of Natural Selection and Sexual Selection
Mile 120 Blacktail Canyon: Of Clones and Social darwinism
bulletDay 8
Mile 121 Conquistador Aisle: The Puzzle of Cooperation and Sex
Mile 132 Stone Creek Beach: Alan's Walk Through Time
Mile 134 Surprise Valley: Marginal Agriculture and Nuclear Winter
bulletDay 9
Mile 134 Tapeats Creek: Meteors Stirring the Pot of Ape Evolution
Mile 136 Deer Creek Falls: Scenarios for Post-Ape Evolution
Mile 137 Overhang Camp: Gathering, Tools, and Prehuman Brain Size
bulletDay 10
Mile 143 Kanab Creek: Growing Young and the Big Brain
Mile 145 Olo Canyon: Selection Scenarios for Juvenilization
Mile 148 Matkatamiba Canyon:
                   Was Throwing the Fast Track for Big Brains?
Mile 150 Upset Rapid: The Evolution of Language
bulletDay 11
Mile 155 The Ledges Camp: How Did Our Musical Abilities Arise?
Mile 157 Havasu Canyon: Consciousness and Will as Rehearsing the Future
Mile 166 National Canyon: Surprises from Emergent Properties
bulletDay 12
Mile 170 Lake Lava: Ageing, Pain and Suffering
Mile 179 Lava Falls Rapid: The Great Black Hole
Mile 182 Honeycomb Tapestries: Ratchets Driven by Winters and Ice Ages
Mile 188 Anasazi Art Gallery: World Population Limits Human Change
bulletDay 13
Mile 188 Whitmore Wash: Scenarios for Superhumans
Mile 205 Kolb Rapid: Trapped in the Backwaters of the Universe
Mile 212 Hangout Rock: Simulations of the Future
Mile 220 Upper Gorilla Camp: Stage-Managing as a Duty
bulletDay 14
Mile 225 Diamond Creek Takeout: To Hold Eternity in an Hour
bulletPOSTSCRIPT
bulletNOTES

 

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