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Evolution of the human brain: when bigger is better
I said much the same thing in my article on the Yas Om. They are in fact slower thinkers than a typical Superior, but benefit from being able to consider things from a truly huge number of different perspectives at once to compensate. In fact, their incredible multitasking and mental flexibility make them resemble a Superturing AI rather than any kind of normal biont.

But the Yas Om have a brain that was designed from the ground up to be decentralised, so it scales much better with increasing mass than a human brain would. The Highbrows, on the other hand, would face additional challenges other than just worse latency.

I don't know how much of the linked article you read, but there's a chart (click HERE) describing how the subcortical volume begins decreasing as a percentage of total brain volume with increasing size. In other words, areas like the hippocampus, crucial for memory formation, and the amygdala, involved in the subjective experience of emotions, would shrink in proportion to the rest of the brain as it increased in size.

These issues could have serious consequences for a being with a 14 kg brain. Consider that at just 9kg, the brain would consist entirely of white and grey matter, with no subcortical areas at all! So no amygdala, hippocampus, etc. Of course this could be managed with cybernetic implants, but presumably a being that cultivated such a massive brain would prefer to be able to rely on their biological tissue alone. After all, they must have a bioist outlook or they would simply have become uploads and could scale to as much 'brain tissue' (i.e. drytech computronium) as they pleased.

Whales and elephants wouldn't encounter these problems as their brains have a different structure. Much larger proportions of their brains are devoted to the cerebellum as a consequence of having such a massive body to manipulate.

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RE: Evolution of the human brain: when bigger is better - by extherian - 08-19-2018, 08:34 PM

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