The "catch-on" factor LO6774

Peter Pflaum (
Thu, 18 Apr 1996 08:17:47 -0500 (EST)


RE: The "catch-on" factor;


The Two Frogs:

TWO frogs were neighbors. One lived in a marsh. where there was
plenty of water, which frogs love: the other frog lived in a lane
some distance away, where all the water to be had was that which
lay in the ruts after a rain. The Marsh Frog warned his friend
and pressed him to come and live with him in the marsh, for he
would find quarters there far more comfortable and - what is
still more important- more safe. But the other refused, saying
that he could not bring himself to move from a place in which he
has become accustomed. A few days afterward a heavy wagon came
down the lane, and he was crushed to death under the wheels.

If a frog comes to the edge of your rut and tells you of a new
and different place what would you do ? At least pay a visit to
see if it's true ?

In James Shreeve's "The Neanderthal Enigma" (William Morrow,
1995) he quotes Allan Wilson, who headed the team of human DNA
mitochondrial research that produced the "Eve" theory. The theory
suggests that all existing people came out of Africa as a single
strain of modern homo sapiens. We all are descendants from this
historic "Eve" mother who was transformed from archaic humans,
sometime in the last 300,000 years.

"Ultimately it all came back to molecular mutations. In the brain
there must be a mutation for the ability to "catch on", to detect
fellow creatures who have discovered something and imitate it as
good." Among the population those groups made up of members who
had "better" brains and "caught-on" faster reproduced at a higher
rate creating a positive feedback loop generating ever-faster
evolution. ( page 123 )

Human evolution since the beginning of modern people has been by
cultural advantages. All new technologies are tools of cultural

Stage I: ( 70,000 years) hunter gathers become farmers and
herders; THE AGE OF CLANS, tribal territory, the dreamtime.

Stage two: ( 7,000 ) improvements in irrigation, transportation,
sailing and navigation, public administration and the money
creates "civilizations" cities and empires; THE AGE OF EMPIRES,
myths, kings and churches.

Stage III, (700 years) cannon boring, joint stock companies and
insurance, money and banking, printing, creates the nation
states, imperialism and the first industrial revolution, the
federalist papers and the U.S. Constitution, Newton, Kepler;
THE INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION, iron and coal. The age of reason.

Stage IV, or III b: (70 years ) mass production, the modern
corporation, public schools and universities, Plank, Einstein,
and going to the moon and back, all are examples of "catching-on"
to better methods. THE MODERN Period, The AGE OF OIL ( Chemistry
and electricity ) The materialist, bottom line, structured world
we come from and know.

As we layer into Stage III c, IV or V: ( 7 years ) the catch-on
is to smaller warm blooded flexible cultural grouping that search
for niches in a global economy. THE AGE of INFORMATION: negative
feedback means the end of the age of dinosaurs mass production
organizations and causes down-sizing. Positive feedback the "Gold
rush" on the Internet. A world we don't know - some of us "catch-
on" faster than others. Some organizations learn faster than

** Peter E. Pflaum Ph.D. , Headmaster GLOBAL_VILLAGE_SCHOOLHOUSE
225 Robinson Road, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169-2176 (904) 428-9609

** Peter E. Pflaum Ph.D. , Headmaster GLOBAL_VILLAGE_SCHOOLHOUSE
225 Robinson Road, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32169-2176 (904) 428-9609


Peter Pflaum <>

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