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Cadell Last
I am an evolutionary anthropologist (MSc.), creator of The Advanced Apes, and science writer currently working on an animated science channel with PBS Digital Studios. My writing has appeared in Scientific American, Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science, Jane Goodall Institute, American Humanist, Humanity+, and my blog is hosted and promoted by Svbtle. My academic research has focused on the species-level differences between humans and chimpanzees. For my doctorate, I would like to integrate evolutionary anthropological and cybernetic theory to better understand our system emergence and evolution. If you want to contact me, please visit,, or (@cadelllast).

Entries by Cadell Last

The End of the Universe: A Search Between Rising Disorder and Complexity

(1) Comments | Posted June 6, 2014 | 1:34 PM

In his new book, The Beginning and the End: The Meaning of Life in Cosmological Perspective, philosopher Clement Vidal (@clemvidal) explores the two main trends of the universe: rising disorder and complexity. As a result, his investigation takes us to the most extreme conditions possible in our universe.

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New Governments Now: Distributed Digital Democracy

(0) Comments | Posted March 11, 2014 | 5:37 PM

Our current governments do not work. I'm talking broadly here, but this is no generalization. You would be hard pressed to find a government on the planet today that operates as efficiently and effectively as it should, given the collective knowledge generated by our scientific and larger academic enterprises. This...

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Extending the Mind

(0) Comments | Posted March 11, 2014 | 3:22 PM

Do you want to travel through the depths of space and time? Do you want to journey to the edge of the universe and back again? If so, it's a good thing you're a human, because that is exactly what the human mind allows you to do! Our species is...

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The Road to Superintelligence

(0) Comments | Posted February 11, 2014 | 11:06 AM

(Image credit:

In the 21st century, we are walking an important road. Our species is alone on this road and it has one destination: super-intelligence.

The most forward-thinking visionaries of our species were able to get a vague glimpse of this...

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The Future of the Internet!

(1) Comments | Posted December 16, 2013 | 4:03 PM

[Image Credit / Alicia Herbert]

The Internet is a ubiquitous phenomenon that seemingly emerged out of nowhere. In my opinion, this emergence represents the most powerful example of exponential computational improvements. You don't need me to tell you that the...

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Is There Life on Mars? (VIDEO)

(3) Comments | Posted December 5, 2013 | 1:36 PM

Image credit: Alicia Herbert

I have always been fascinated by questions related to our biological uniqueness. We have no evidence that life evolved more than once in the universe. But of course our universe is vast and homogenous. We now have

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Can We Live Forever? (VIDEO)

(24) Comments | Posted November 19, 2013 | 8:20 PM

Image credit: Alicia Herbert

Transhumanism is the idea that we can (and should) use scientific knowledge to fundamentally transform the human form in order to improve human intellectual and physical abilities. These ideas are usually connected with discussion about radical life extension,...

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Where and When Did Humans Evolve?

(39) Comments | Posted November 4, 2013 | 5:17 PM


[Image Credit / Alicia Herbert]

Humans are a species that permanently inhabit every continent on the planet. But of course, like all other species, we've evolved. So where and when did this take place? Figuring out important temporal and spatial questions related...

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Why Aren't We Preparing for Supervolcanoes?

(51) Comments | Posted November 1, 2013 | 4:20 PM

Last week the United Nations General Assembly approved the establishment of an "International Asteroid Warning Group." Researchers have identified more than 2,300 near-earth asteroids large enough to cause significant damage to the biosphere, but it is estimated that there are 100 times more that we have yet to...

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Does the Recent Homo Discovery Change Our Understanding of Human Evolution?

(18) Comments | Posted October 22, 2013 | 10:12 AM

The recent discovery of a fantastically complete early Homo skull from Dmanisi, Georgia (dated to about 1.8 million years old) has set off a proverbial "bomb" in the paleoanthropological community (PDF here).

Over the past two decades paleoanthropologists have discovered several different early human fossils...

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Are We Observing Extraterrestrial Intelligence Without Realizing It?

(333) Comments | Posted October 17, 2013 | 3:50 PM

Philosophy and the physical sciences have a long and interesting past spanning the entirety of human history. Philosophers have played the role of logically deducing the existence of certain physical phenomena that were untestable. Physical scientists have then either empirically confirmed or refuted the philosophical speculation proposed when the necessary...

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Can Google Defeat Aging?

(15) Comments | Posted October 2, 2013 | 5:21 PM

For most people, nothing seems as inevitable as the aging process. We are born, we grow old, and we die. It's a fact of existence.

But also consider that aging is an evolved process. The human evolved aging average seems to be around 80, which is substantially longer than...

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What Is the 'Internet of Things'?

(3) Comments | Posted September 26, 2013 | 3:44 PM

Do you remember the sound of "dial-up" Internet? For many this sound defines a decade of emerging obsessive Internet use. For my generation, it marks a decade of battling for family computer time, while simultaneously hoping that no one needed to use the landline.

We've come a...

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Where Are We Going to Get New Energy?

(33) Comments | Posted September 22, 2013 | 6:27 PM

The U.N.'s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will be releasing the world's foremost climate report on September 30. The report is bound to spark fierce, polarizing, and annoying debate over the effects our energy economy is having on the planet's climate. Leaked copies of the report have...

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Is the Internet Evolving Into a Global Brain?

(24) Comments | Posted September 20, 2013 | 4:34 PM

You don't need me to tell you that the Internet has become a pervasive global network of people and machines that is beginning to mediate all human interactions. But, just for a second, think about how different the 21st century will be in comparison to the 20th century, simply because...

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