Re: Apoptosis

From: Grant Callaghan (
Date: Tue Feb 05 2002 - 21:57:52 GMT

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    From: "Grant Callaghan" <>
    Subject: Re: Apoptosis
    Date: Tue, 05 Feb 2002 13:57:52 -0800
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    > > Little confused by the question.
    > > > Apoptosis, the death response of cells.
    > > > Is there a parallel in neurobiology, i/e/, is the mutation rate of
    > > > memes linked
    > > > to the death of other memes !?
    >Hi Ray, and John and others who replied,
    >I will try to eleborate,
    >If memes were to be multiplicated ( replicated in numbers) do other memes
    >die !? Allegedly, not ! They stay all the time somewhere, they can be/ will
    >be forgotten, there will be no longer a behavior/ trait/ habit attached to
    >them_ they won 't die in the sense we all think about. They will not evolve
    >Which info allegedly ' dies ', old information has to go ( memory !?).
    >Which memes die and does this influence the mutation- rate of any other
    >meme/ memeplex !?
    >If memes has to die to let any space for others does this affect the
    >tion- flow of any other meme/ memeplex !?
    >And if memes commit suicide, or their death is controlled by others/ their
    >neighbours, to let others or themselves propagate, does this influence any
    >mutation- rate/ information- flow of any other meme/ memeplex !?
    >Is there a mechanism whci supposingly drives memes to ( commit) suicide_
    >why such a mechanism if it should exist !?
    Years of language learning (and relearning) have taught me the truth of that
    old saying "the brain is like a muscle, the more you use it the stronger it
    gets. But if you don't use it, you lose it." Language is that way, too.
    Especially if it is a second language learned later in life than childhood.
    I keep having to learn the same Chinese and Japanese words over and over
    because back in the U.S. I don't use the patterns any more. Even more
    frustrating, I once had a good grasp of Spanish, but when I go down to
    Mexico now, I find myself trying to use Chinese grammar with Spanish

    I don't know if old patterns have been replaced by new ones or if the area
    they occupied has just diminished beacuse of lack of use, but fluency has
    flown the coop until I spend time relearning what I thought I already knew.
    I think language is a skill, a lot like playing the piano or tennis. If you
    don't keep at it, you lose the skill and have to practice again to get it
    back. How this affects culture and memes, I don't know. I've watched my
    wife forget how to write Chinese and my daughter forget how to speak it.
    Each time they made the effort, they were able to recapture the skill and
    even improve upon it.

    This is one of the reasons I see memes as tools. We get better at using a
    tool with practice. The tool allows us to do things that would be more
    difficult without it. Culture is the set of tools we use on a daily basis
    to get through life. How well we live has a lot to do with the tools we
    have available to us. We're always looking for new ones and are quick to
    discard those we don't like the feel of. But I still haven't figured out
    where to draw the line yet.


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