Evolution

Assessing the Future of Human Evolution



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Many different futures can be predicted for our race from the information we have concerning human evolution in the past. We know that animals such as ourselves adapt physically to fare better within their habitat or niche. So what we have to look at here is what kind of future environments we will have to survive. It is also possible to predict the future of the human race by looking at trends in different cultures, in scientific and technological advances, in breeding habits and in geographical movement.

One possibility, particularly in more advanced areas of the world, is that genetics will become more entangled with health care, in that more and more of us will accept the use of animal and gene transplants. Obviously, some people would still be against this practice- this is likely to be predominately dependant on religious beliefs- but this is one interesting way that the human species could develop in the future. What interesting and unusual traits would we like to import from our animal cousins ? We could pick anything at all! The practice could become the latest trend, a more extreme form of piercing, tattooing and so on; or it could provide our race with superhuman abilities., glow-in-the-dark skin, retractable claws. New laws would have to be made, or chaos could reign.

Or, how about technological implants? Phone devices implanted within our hands have been speculated over for ages now; at some point in the not-so distant future they could become a convenient and trendy reality. But why stop there? What about a connection to the internet, seated deep within our brains, so that at any point a future human could call up a screen onto their own eye? Identity chips, credit card implants where you simply wave your hands over the scanner; why not fold-out foot-sole rollerskate wheels? The world's your solar-powered oyster.

In one possible scenario, it doesn't go so well; the super-powers decided to push the big red button. If you Google the word Survivalist' you will find groups of people who are preparing for the apocalypse at this very moment. These people, if any, form the ranks of those who would be left alive if such an event were to occur. Stepping out warily into the discoloured sunshine, what problems would these survivors face? Physical evolution of the human form would be necessary and could be augmented by radiation fallout. Dietary changes might force the development of digestive systems, body shape, teeth. Perhaps an evolutionary step backwards might be effected, as the soft bodies of modern humans had to adapt to harsher conditions than we live in now, in this air-conditioned, filtered-water age.

These are some of the more exciting options; to be honest with you, I chose this route because I found it more interesting. We will all be able to see through walls/watch TV in our brains/climb tall trees with our incredibly developed limbs! -alas, no. Sadly for us, it is unlikely that any major evolutionary changes will develop within our own lifetimes. The speculation is more interesting than the reality. The actual likelihood is that we will become more and more soft-bodied and intelligence-focused; we will continue to have wars, there will always be poverty, men will continue to leave the toilet seat. But we can always hope, can't we?

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