November 30, 2011

Chimps throwing stuff

Chimp. (Image/Wikipedia)
There's an interesting article on physorg today. It suggests that chimps throwing feces is a sign of intelligence. That's the headline they pulled from the story, anyway. But it's way more interesting than that.

It seems throwing and language are intertwined. It's a wild thought: that throwing something at someone in your group may have been one of the first forms of communication -- a comment of sorts. Looking at today's chimps, they found that those who threw the most stuff, and threw it more accurately than their pals, also showed increased activity in the left hemisphere of the brain, where speech is processed.

I love the idea that throwing and language are related. It's so unexpected. This is another sign that we know next to nothing about our own brains. That's because we are an infant race. Too bad we have nukes, huh?

PS: This is a fun story too: Hive mind to sort out whale sounds

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