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If we were all color blind... ?

 
 
fresco
 
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 02:06 am
If the human race were genetically color blind, how would it effect our concepts of "reality".
This is a potentially interesting question with respect to the "embodied cognition" hypothesis discussed on the "independent reality" thread.
(For the purposes of this discussion, I define "color blind" as being confined to the "black-grey-white" continuum)
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Type: Discussion • Score: 16 • Views: 8,326 • Replies: 95

 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 05:46 am
@fresco,
we would have to develop other sensory mens to detect aspects of our environment that affect our lives. (eg, food plants produce colorful fruits and other ripening signs, we harvest things like alfalfa and wheat as the target field is rapidly assess by color changes, intensity, and density- Many of our tools for health , safety and science rely upon things like color to do their detection.eg metallurgical analyses, spectrometry(key woprd is spectra). We could , of course, developseparate sensors but we would be left out of over 99.99% pf the spectrum.

We are basically color blind to large segments of the spectrum, like we cant see in ultraviolet whereas several mammals, insects, and birds can.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  4  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 05:53 am
God, "philosophers" love to make **** up. There is no "black, grey, white continuum." It takes intellectual aparatus to detect "color" whether or not one speaks of a human being or a honey bee. From a human perspective (and a human perspective only), black is the absence of all color, and white is the presence of all color (which is to say, all the light radiation we are capable of detecting).

Paeleontologists believe that human beings, or, rather, their great ape ancestors, developed the ability to detect "color" because it gives an advantage in detecting fruit and other forms of food which are ripe, ready to eat. Every eye in nature admits the light radiation which embodies what we refer to as color--the distinction to be made is the relatively fine-tuned ability to distinguish various narrow segments of the light spectrum.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 06:03 am
@Setanta,
Certain unguklates see the world in black and white (rods n cones ratios) but can see in magnification and in the IR and UV. Keeps them alive longer .
What you are sorta saying is that ,"if we didnt have color perception by now--we would probably develop it by some means sooner or later"

I agree, its kinda hard to imagine any environmental component that is undetectable for long or a"tool" that plants use to spread their seeds (other than using external "buggy" Assistance to spread their pollen or seeds).
Setanta
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 06:22 am
@farmerman,
I was fascinated when i learned that bees and other critters see flowers in UV or IR--there are all sorts of neat pix of what flowers look like in those radiation bands.

IR is also interesting in that it allows the detection of "heat." So-called automatifcally opening doors are most commonly operated by PIR--passive infrared. There is a chip which "sees" the look-down zone, and responds to any significant change of state in IR radiation. They are usually calibrated so that something with a relatively small IR signature, such as a crawling infant or a cat or a dog will not trip the relay.

So, the question for me is, do critters us IR to find other critters. I suspect they do.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 06:33 am
@fresco,
I suppose we'd find a different way to sort wiring bundles.
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 06:40 am
@roger,
red white and green would be rough smooth and just right
0 Replies
 
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 07:01 am
Background Note

Embodied cognition is the thesis that cognition is dependent on both central (brain) and peripheral (perceptual and motor systems).In the move to extend the boundaries of the cognitive system and process beyond its traditional location, " the body" can be viewed as a constraint, a distributor, or a regulator of cognitive activity. Color vision has been shown to depend on particular pigments present in the eye (i.e. a constraint), and that these pigments differ between species. (Varela, Evans and Rosch). Hence, "color vision" is not so much a "general evolutionary advantage" but a set of "niche exploitations" not necessarily of "survival significance".

So a couple of philosophical issues with respect "reality" on the basis of this thesis are
(1) Could "color" be discussed at all if we had no (pre-scientific) concept of it.
(2) Would the lack of a pre-scientific concept prevent the development of transducers or indeed the existence of the category "pigment".


Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 09:18 am
@fresco,
Quote:
(For the purposes of this discussion, I define "color blind" as being confined to the "black-grey-white" continuum)


The more I try to envision this, the more I realize that it is very difficult.
I try picturing a scene from a black and white movie, but then I wonder how much of that scene I understand on the background of knowing what colors would be there in real life.
0 Replies
 
Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 09:21 am
This kid is not color blind. He had his eyes removed at a very young age because of cancer.
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 10:48 am
@Cyracuz,
Interesting video, However, individuals lacking a "normal sense" are a totally different philosophical (and psychological) ballgame to whole species limitations. For example, the guy in the movie had social interaction with others whose vision was an essential component of the definition of a shared reality. The fact that substitute sense data was being used as a secondary recognition system begs the question that sighted individuals were responsible for establishing the categories to be recognized.
Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 11 Jan, 2012 11:18 am
@fresco,
That is a good point. I thought the video was a bit off topic, but I chose to post it anyway.
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Thu 12 Jan, 2012 09:27 pm
If I were completely color blind I would surely prefer early Van Gogh to later Van Gogh.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 12:08 am
@JLNobody,
I wonder what pigments Van Gogh would have used had he also been color blind. They might have worked better for a color blind audiance than what he gave us.
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 04:45 pm
@roger,
I think he might have preferred to dra w with charcoal. Wink
0 Replies
 
JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 04:45 pm
@roger,
I think he might have preferred to dra w with charcoal. Wink
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 05:16 pm
@fresco,
Quote:
Color vision has been shown to depend on particular pigments present in the eye (i.e. a constraint), and that these pigments differ between species. (Varela, Evans and Rosch). Hence, "color vision" is not so much a "general evolutionary advantage" but a set of "niche exploitations" not necessarily of "survival significance".

How did they arrive at that conclusion. I can think of several species with similar eye colors that vary in color perception. I think, genetically , eye colors more reflect multiple nucleotide polymorphic features. Like, for instance, deaf and blind cats arealways blue eyed (just as their body color has the predominant allele for piebald tortoise color.
HAwks and dogs have very similar pigmented iris yet dogs are color blind.
Fruit and flower coloring has evolved pretty much in concert with the spread of the animals who exploit them.

Mammals , with the exception of hominids, have only two kinds of color photoreceptors(cones) while raptors have several more cone types than humans, also some fish. Think of reef fish and their wild colors. Color perception and its evolution had to be more than niche exploitation, otherwise why are their so many unique modifications in the animal morphologies for eye development. I think the "niche exploitation " is partly correct but it has grown beyond that to actual exchange of niches and adaptation to them. Im beginning to question Verita's insites. Hes come up with a few points that I question. Kinda like me and Lynn Margulis. Shes said some great things and done some great research. However, shes also done some things in science that are the equivalent of Ron PAul's worldview (The other two guys with Verita I dont know diddly about)

fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 05:24 pm
@JLNobody,
Since all "colors" would be shades of grey, he could use anything which marked a
page.

Assuming that the sense of smell became more highly developed, one could imagine an art form based on that sense such that an orange say would be depicted both visually and nasally with its scent.
fresco
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 05:30 pm
@farmerman,
Google "Varela Color Vision" and you will get a number of detailed technical explanations about pigments and color dimensionality. e.g.
http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=QY4RoH2z5DoC&pg=PA289&lpg=PA289&dq=Varela+color+visio
0 Replies
 
farmerman
 
  1  
Reply Fri 13 Jan, 2012 05:38 pm
@fresco,
As jl stated, Van Gogh;s early works are more studies of tone and light and shadow. Like the "potato Eaters"
 

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