Saturday, August 15, 2015

The Great Silence, by Allora (author), Calzadilla (author) Ted Chiang (author)

E-Flux, May 2015

http://supercommunity.e-flux.com/authors/ted-chiang/

Evidence continues to mount that parrots, and perhaps certain other birds (crows? ravens?) are much, much smarter then we would expect, extrapolating from what we know about brain structure, brain size, and intelligence in mammals. Alex, Irene Pepperberg's African Grey research partner who died at the tragically young age of thirty, broke amazing ground in our understanding of what parrots are capable of.

Meanwhile, we're devoting time, attention, and resources to looking for non-human intelligence elsewhere in the universe. Anywhere else but on Earth.

Are we overlooking the obvious? And how would we recognize and communicate with non-human intelligence if we did find it?

There's no action in this story. It's pure concept, a fascinating look at the world and humans from the mind of a parrot.

Recommended.