Friday Fluff – March 18th, 2011

By Razib Khan | March 18, 2011 1:22 pm


1) First, a post from the past: Evolution: What the Fossils Say and Why It Matters.

2) Weird search query of the week: “cheap pretty tutus.”

3) Comment of the week, in response to “Think Twins”:

An interesting point. No one can create another Hitler via cloning, nor a Charlemagne or even Mozart should their DNA be available in some way. The problems are many and are well illustrated with a car analogy… GM tries to produce exacting replicas of individual models thousands of times and they do this every year. Despite their efforts, quality varies, performance varies, endurance varies. No two vehicles of the same model are identical. Like a car has a driver, a human has a brain. Despite their similarities, identical twins are not identical in all ways.

They say that everyone has a twin somewhere. My friends met someone that looks nearly exactly like me. Yet other people have my same name. None of those people are me or even like me in meaningful ways. Cloning a human will get you a human which looks like another – nothing more. There is nothing special in that… until genetic ID systems are implemented. Then a clone is something different altogether.

4) And finally, your weekly fluff fix:

MORE ABOUT: Blog, Friday Fluff
  • gcochran

    “Cloning a human will get you a human which looks like another – nothing more”


  • Alan Kellogg


    How is it nonsense.

  • Razib Khan

    i think he means behavior genetics.

  • gcochran

    You’d get someone who was behaviorally similar – very similar. Similar in IQ, personality, and all manner of quirks. Obviously a Hitler clone would require a Weimar Germany in order to show his full potential, while Charlemagne would probably have been just another big galoot except for being born the son of Pepin the Short.

    The clone of Mozart would probably not re-compose The Magic Flute, but he would exhibit a very unusual degree of musical talent.

    As for all the recent nonsense about talent not existing, putting in ten thousand hours, and all that: basically crap. Genius needs work, but the average Joe could sweat blood for his entire life and never become a genius. In fact, the average Joe could never become a competent electrical engineer.

    I wonder how anyone can believe this nonsense. Familiarity with behavioral genetics is not necessary: anyone with a fairly thick knowledge of history, or who has even observed and remembered the people around him, should know better.

  • bob sykes

    A little off-post (I agree with geochran).

    Why do you discriminate against your black cat? Why do we only get Fluffy pix?

  • Razib Khan

    black kat optimal light is summer.

  • EcoPhysioMichelle

    Black cat was last week!

  • Janet J

    Black cat
    Nine lives
    Short days
    Long nights
    Livin on the edge
    Not afraid to die

  • John Emerson

    On Mozart, remember that his father was a well-respected professional musician whose specialty was music teaching.

  • ohwilleke

    Worth blogging:

    Non-lineal model developed for language extinction prediction shows nine countries en route to religion exitinction:

    Source study available online at


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About Razib Khan

I have degrees in biology and biochemistry, a passion for genetics, history, and philosophy, and shrimp is my favorite food. In relation to nationality I'm a American Northwesterner, in politics I'm a reactionary, and as for religion I have none (I'm an atheist). If you want to know more, see the links at


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