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Human Species May Split In Two 1000

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the if-we-don't-destroy-ourselves-first dept.
gEvil (beta) writes "According to an article at the BBC, an evolutionary theorist in London suggests that humanity may split into two sub-species within the next 100,000 years. From the article: 'The descendants of the genetic upper class would be tall, slim, healthy, attractive, intelligent, and creative and a far cry from the "underclass" humans who would have evolved into dim-witted, ugly, squat goblin-like creatures.'" No missing link here, we already have the troll-like humans to prove it.
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Human Species May Split In Two

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:38PM (#16477199)
    Half of us will be Swedish, and the other half will be British?
    • by Savage-Rabbit (308260) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:44PM (#16477313)
      Half of us will be Swedish, and the other half will be British?

      Yes and the Brits will make revolting sausages out of the Swedes and eat them with bacon and eggs.
      • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:28PM (#16477935)
        The sort of evolution mentioned in the header article starting this discussion is possible only in a caste system like that in India.

        In the "modern" system in the USA, economics imposes a different sort of evolution. As people become richer, they have fewer children. As people become poorer, they have more children. Those with the wits to become rich essentially become extinct, leaving a nation of teaming poor people.

        In short, the socio-economics of free markets kills of the smart people by voluntary extinction.

        • by WhiplashII (542766) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @07:46PM (#16478961) Homepage Journal
          And more to the point, what is the evolutionary pressure? If everyone lives, then evolution stops. Evolution is a bunch of pointless changes that suddenly become important when the environment changes, wiping out everyone without the change. What you should expect from "evolution" without any "weeding out" is extreme divergence from the mean, but not much change to the mean. So you wouldn't have 2 races, you'd have 5 billion - and we would still mostly humans...

          Really, who is this guy?
          • by dalutong (260603) <djtansey@@@gmail...com> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @09:19PM (#16479889)
            Evolution isn't just about surviving -- it is also about who mates with who. If the smart people stop reproducing with the short people, then the divergence will still happen.
            • by jets42 (820206) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @12:32AM (#16481199) Homepage Journal
              In the comment above, you said:

              If the smart people stop reproducing with the short people, then the divergence will still happen.

              HMMmmmmmm.... That depends on whether I interpret your reference
              to "short people", as meaning "people lacking in height/stature"
              or "people lacking intelligence". The first one of those makes it a
              TWO variable equation, with associated preferences, and the second one created a ONE variable equasion, with preferences to associate with people of similar status (resulting in divergance/polarazation and fewer "average" people in the middle over time). Well, As-Far-As-I-Know:

              1. [typed with tongue-in-cheek]
                If the smart people stop reproducing with the short people,
                Then you will just wind up with progressively fewer tall short people.
                (providing that those are the ONLY parameters you define)
                If on the other hand, the "smart" people DO reproduce, but only with
                the "tall" people, then...
                • The pre-existing smart AND short people, won't be able to find "smart" people (of any height) to reproduce with, and will therefore be limited to reproducing with tall but not so smart people. This would theoretically result in average height, average intelligence people.
                • From this "average" group of people, genetics, chance, and standard deviation would result in some taller and some shorter people. Theoretically, the influence of one smarter parent would also help educate most of these children, to become "smarter than your average bear"... despite the fact that some had more "natural" ability than others due to genetic disposition.
                • The net result of this, would be that existing short+smart people would have smarter than average children of average to varying heights.
                • If the smart people persist in their refusal to reproduce with short people, then over dozens of generations, you will wind up with a population of short and stupid people, because all of their smart descendants will want to leave the group of sorties, and possibly meet/mate with taller people.
                • Meanwhile the smart and tall people can reproduce with any other tall people (either smart or not), but might pick the attractive ones, regardless.
                • In this scenario, it is the stupid people in each group, who are free to mate with absolutely anybody they want to (and who finds THEM attractive)...so they are "free agents" and spread across the board.
                • This soon results in a major shortage of tall+stupid people, to mate with the short intelligent ones!! (since short+smart people refuse to reproduce with each other, and can't attract tall+smart people, they have to either become extinct, or reproduce with tall non-smart people)
                • Now, since the tall+smart people have married the most attractive tall people across the board... short+smart people are left with tall+stupid+ugly people as mates. (who are in short supply, and high demand by short+smart people)
                • Eventually, you have a genetic bias AGAINST intelligence among the short people. Since all smart sorties are forced to marry tall+dim, the smart sorties eventually become extinct. There are progressively fewer "average height" people in the middle, and the separate group of tall people of varying intelligence, won't have much to do with the sorties, except for the occasional tall+stupid individual, who thinks that one of the sorties is cute enough to marry, despite the fact that she and her entire sortie family are dim-witted.
              2. Now, if you meant that the "short people" were short on brains, or lacking intelligence (instead of height) then:
                • The smarter people just refuse to marry the stupid people, and height/stature isn't built into the equation.
                • This means that smart people reproduce with other smart people, regardless of height, leaving the stupid people to reproduce with each other.
                • Over time, you have a divergence in the middle, where smart people tend to have children with the POTENTIA
          • by Dr. Spork (142693) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @01:25AM (#16481459)
            Two things you're ignoring: One, if everyone lives no matter what their traits are, then "genetically expensive" features like good vision will just go away. Evolution has been strongly selecting people with good vision, but your eyes cease to affect your chance to reproduce, but mutations still go on, it is incredibly probable that each generation's eyesight will be progressively worse. Ditto for other traits.

            Two, there is evolutionary pressure, caused by partner selection. This is the basis of TFA! Good looking people tend to find good looking partners and make good looking children, ditto for the not-good-looking. I would add to this the element of wealth, I think it's quite important: I grew up in a very rich suburb where my schoolmates were uncommonly pretty. I realized that the people rich enough to live in that neighborhood attracted uncommonly pretty partners. No mystery why, and no surprise that the children turned out pretty. Now when you consider how little class-mixing there is in the US, and how little social mobility there is (that's right, look it up [lse.ac.uk]!) This means that money, and the extra attractiveness it brings, stays in families. Families with money will typically marry pretty people - most likely from other rich/pretty families, but possibly someone from a lower class who happened to look good. This means the upper classes poach the best lookers from below, making themselves even prettier. Because in each generation, the best looking people marry out of their lower class, this leaves the people of lower class with a increasingly uglier partner pool (on average, of course).

            As this trend advances, the increasingly pretty rich will find fewer eligible partners among the increasingly ugly lower classes. Now that you have two non-interbreeding groups, each with different selection pressures, it's not hard to imagine a further divergence. It's not a pleasant thing to picture, but it's not really so crazy!

            • by ShadowBot (908773) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @05:40AM (#16482569) Journal
              "Two, there is evolutionary pressure, caused by partner selection. This is the basis of TFA! Good looking people tend to find good looking partners and make good looking children, ditto for the not-good-looking. I would add to this the element of wealth" ...

              "Families with money will typically marry pretty people - most likely from other rich/pretty families, but possibly someone from a lower class who happened to look good"

              Not entirely accurate. You are leaving out a couple of factors.
              First, if you observe more closely you will find that *Men* with money tend to marry beautiful *Women*.
              This is becuase the mating preferences of men and women are obviously different. So wealthy men (whether they are ugly or handsome) will poach the best looking women from the not so wealthy classes, leading to them having (on average) better looking children.
              However, the good looking man already in the lower class in very unlikely to be picked out of it by a wealthy woman. Infact, what is likely is that he will have more children, by more (lower class) women, than his upper class counter parts. Thereby, increasing the pool of poor but beautiful women to move upwards, and the pool of poor but beautiful men to move sideways.

              Second, as much as social mobility may be low, if you think of it in terms of movement of genetic material between classes per generation it's huge.
              For example, how many of the people on today's top 500 rich list had rich families just 5 generations ago, or even just 3?
              And how many fifth generation decendants of say, the king of England (or any other royalty, or business mogul) are still considered very wealthy? And, on an evolutionary timescale, five generations is quite small.

              Wealth tends to be cyclical. A rough approximation of it being - Rich Parent -> Lazy Child -> Poor Parent -> Desperate Child -> Rich Parent

              TFA also ignores two other points:
              1. The definition of beautiful changes every few decades. In some african countries as recently as ten years ago women used to go to fat camps, where the purpose was to put ON weight not take it off, becuase the rounded body was considered much more healthy/attractive (Not Hungry-looking = Healthy).
              However, in the west now, where people are much more likely to die from over-feeding than under nutrition, stick thin is becoming the image of the perfect body (Not Morbidly Obese = Healthy).

              2. With the amount of progress being made in the fields of complexion altering makeup and cheap plastic surgery, we will soon be reaching a point where the traits you are marrying into will no longer be genetically transferable. Perhaps that will even lead to a situation (when people can look like anything they want) where looks REALLY don't count and beauty begins to be judged by personality, capability or some other non-physical yardstick.

              Basically , whenever anyone tries to predict the future based on the changing fads of today, they usually end up very wrong.
            • by Kreigaffe (765218) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @07:39AM (#16483247)
              Uh.

              Look at our politicians.

              Look at leaders of industry.

              Dubya ain't pretty. And.. Ted Kennedy? Hello?

              SOMEONE TELL ME BALLMER IS HOT -- I DARE YOU.

              So how about royalty, they've had a few centuries of selective breeding right? ... huh look at that, Prince Charles looks.. mighty.. not.. royal.
        • by Onan (25162) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @08:07PM (#16479201)
          Actually, the one solid predictor of reproductive tendency (in all cultures, so far as I know) is education. More educated people are less likely to have children, less educated more likely. Of course education and affluence have a strong correlation. But when they diverge, reproductive tendency follows the schooling, not the money.

          Education is not a genetically-passed trait. So while this has interesting implications for societies, it will have little or no effect on species.

        • by Simonetta (207550) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @09:13PM (#16479829)
          As people become richer, they have fewer children. As people become poorer, they have more children.

              The rich people are much more selective about the number of children that they have. They are willing and able to invest more into each child that they produce.

              The poor have always had many children. For one thing, they don't have the access to birth control that allows the rich and middle classes to have unlimited sex (without barrier-style birth control methods like condoms, crevical caps, and diaphrams) without pregnancies. Two, historically about half of the children of the poor die before productive maturity in mid adult years. And, three, the poor have been indoctrinated by culture and religion to have as many babies as possible.

              It has only been in the recent historical era, about the past hundred years, that most of the children that the poor have reach 'productive maturity'. By that I mean not only adulthood, but also get past the self-destructive cultural brainwashing like military 'service', reckless driving, and binge intoxications that kills so many young males.

              This present era with so much population growth is directly dependent and resultant from massive amounts of cheap energy, primarily oil. As we pass through Peak Oil, when half of all the oil on Earth has been found, refined, and burned, we will find that it is increasingly difficult to keep the poor people alive and well, regardless of how much they breed. As the oil era passes and the price of oil climbs each year, more and more of the poor sections of the Earth will become like present-day Palestine. That is hopelessly overcrowded; with no resources or solid government; endlessly locked in a civil war that prevents the economic growth needed to sustain its population.

              The rich are not engaged in an unforseen policy of extinction, they are enacting an understood but unspoken policy of population sustainablility at lower levels than at the present. It is the poor that are breeding themselves into unsustainable levels. Levels that will inevitably result in a massive 'die-off' in the not-too-distant future.
      • by einhverfr (238914) <chris.travers@gmail . c om> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @07:37PM (#16478859) Homepage Journal
        I didn't think the morlocks made sausage.... But then it was a long time since I read the book.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:45PM (#16477337)
      Somebody tag this as Old News, please! H.G. Wells made a very similar prediction more than a century ago.
      • by gkhan1 (886823) <oskarsigvardssonNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:48PM (#16478229)
        Yeah, I know. How come you can land of the frontpage of /. by simply repeating the plot from the The Time Machine? Silly rabbit...
      • Re:So to be clear... (Score:5, Informative)

        by jafac (1449) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @11:22PM (#16480807) Homepage
        Actually - it's older than that.

        There's this book called The Bible (author; disputed, age; roughly 2500 years?) that tells the story of an ancient nomadic race of goat-herders called the Hebrews. One of their laws was to discourage marriage outside their own race. Only the Hebrews were the Creator's favored race, and the rest were damned.
        • by sita (71217) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @03:23AM (#16481995)
          There's this book called The Bible (author; disputed, age; roughly 2500 years?) that tells the story of an ancient nomadic race of goat-herders called the Hebrews. One of their laws was to discourage marriage outside their own race. Only the Hebrews were the Creator's favored race, and the rest were damned.

          Wrong on all accounts. The Hebrews didn't exactly believe themselves to be favoured. They believed that they were God's tool to bring salvation to all of humanity. They also didn't believe that this made them any better than the rest of humanity (but it did bring a lot of punishment from God for not being). Sometimes it worked, Jonah, who wasn't exactly a role model, but perhaps more of a warning example, brought God's message to the citizens of Nineve, who turned away from their wicked ways and were saved. And so on.

          And, as you probably know, marriage between prominent Hebrews and outsiders weren't exactly rare. Even moabite (supposedly the worst people Israel knew of) married into Israel. Jacob married Arameans, Josef an Egyptian. The wife of Moses is widely held to have been a black women (a cushite). And Boaz' wife Ruth is the role model of all women who marry into the Jewish people today. (The list is much longer, and I seem to remember that it didn't always work out well, but people were people even in biblic times.)

          And finally, the Hebrews weren't a race of goat-herders. They did a lot of things (including herding goats, of course)!

    • by colonslashslash (762464) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:45PM (#16477353) Homepage
      I'm British, but that was fucking hilarious. Mod up haha.

      I, for one, welcome our futuristic tall, slim, attractive, intelligent and creative sauna loving meatball munching copyright infringing swashbuckling pirate blonde overlords. May death come quickly to their enemies. Yaaaaar!
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by slughead (592713)
      Half of us will be Swedish, and the other half will be British?

      From the Oh-Snap! Dept.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Gentlewhisper (759800)
      Half of us will be Swedish, and the other half will be British?


      Nah, the top half will be the Mac users. The other half will be.. you know.
    • by pilgrim23 (716938) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:57PM (#16477545)
      I know! lets call one group Eloi and the other...oh...say Morlocks!
      after all...you are who you eat...
  • by BWJones (18351) * on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:39PM (#16477211) Homepage Journal
    *Snort!* Ha ha ha ha ha ha....... heeeee ha ha ha ha ha! *sniff*.......

    In all seriousness though, there is nothing new here as this certainly plays off any number of sci-fi subjects going back to the late 1800s and early 1900s. People have been obsessed with this sort of thing for years and in fact, was the basis of racial profiling, discrimination, murder and genocide by the Nazis in the 1930s through eugenics.

    The funny thing though is that even though many folks are obsessed with image and "beauty", people will choose mates for a variety of different reasons, that sometimes boggle the mind in their complexity or pathology and as long as you have people that are..... less than attractive with large amounts of financial reserves, you will always have confounds in the system. Other confounds are simply human relationships. For instance, my wife and I decided to date and then marry only after we had been good friends for some period of time. The fact that she is physically attractive [utah.edu] was only incidental which brings up a whole other category of people who meet and then fall in love over the Internet without ever having met in person.

    Oh, and speaking of confounds, the increasing use of plastic surgery among those that 1) have real reason to use it (true disfigurement) and 2) are just vain enough to want it (lips, cheeks, chins, breasts) will have an effect on this as well, leading to a whole new aspect of relationships. What is false advertising when it comes to body modification? Breasts are pretty easy to detect, but what about that nose which might have been bobbed? Straightened? What about those cheekbones? Teeth? All of these mods and others will confound any selection pressure and likely will increase in their statistical impact the more important "beauty" becomes to societies.

    But hey, you know..... The Clone Wars will take care of all of this sort of nonsense..... or will it be Skynet? :-)

    • by rolfwind (528248) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:08PM (#16477695)
      Nazis in the 1930s through eugenics.


      Lest people think that Eugenics could only happened under the Nazis, various mental health places in America and other countries were practicing forms of it until the 1960-70s with practices like sterilizing the mentally handicapped:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eugenics#Eugenics_and _the_state.2C_1890s.E2.80.931945 [wikipedia.org]

      "Despite the changed postwar attitude towards eugenics in the U.S. and some European countries, a few nations, notably, Canada and Sweden, maintained large-scale eugenics programs, including forced sterilization of mentally handicapped individuals, as well as other practices, until the 1970s. In the United States, sterilizations capped off in the 1960s, though the eugenics movement had largely lost most popular and political support by the end of the 1930s.[27]"

      If you ever watched "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest", there seems to have been other practices (Lobotomy) that lived until recently as well that seem barbaric today....
      • Bush Family Trees (Score:4, Informative)

        by Doc Ruby (173196) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:25PM (#16477891) Homepage Journal
        George Bush Jr's grandfather Prescott Bush [google.com] was a eugenicist, consistent with his work funding Hitler's Nazis [straightdope.com]. Prescott's law partner Tighe was the Connecticut (Bush family home state) director of the eugenics "Birth Control League". Prescott's boss Averell Harriman was one of the main promoters of American eugenics.
        • by Venik (915777) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @07:27PM (#16478725)
          Din't do a very good job, now did he? As they say, eugenics starts at home.
        • by Geoffreyerffoeg (729040) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @07:58PM (#16479093)
          George Bush Jr's grandfather Prescott Bush ... Prescott's law partner Tighe ... Connecticut (Bush family home state) ... Prescott's boss Averell Harriman

          "I...am your father's...father's...law partner's...and home state's...and boss's...ad hominem."
          "So what does that make us?"
          "Absolutely nothing. Which is what your argument means!"
  • by skitheboat (901329) * on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:39PM (#16477213) Homepage
    Direct quotes from Dr. Curry's article:
    Men: "... bigger penises"
    Women: "... pert breasts" (and presumably larger/fuller too)
    I gotta wonder how valid this "research" truly is - sounds like something Dr. Frankenstein or Homer Simpson [komar.org] would have written - D'OH! ;-)

    Well done ScuttleMonkey with the "Missing Link" addition.
    • Women: "... pert breasts" (and presumably larger/fuller too)

      Boy, he really hasn't studied human beings enough, has he? First he expects smart people to be beautiful (or the converse) and now he expects large boobs to be pert?
    • by fermion (181285) * on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:54PM (#16478307) Homepage Journal
      He lost credibility when he mentioned that 'tall, slender' as evolutionary beneficial. From my understanding, the tallness and slenderness of a person can have as much to do with environment as genetics. Immigrants to the US might be short and stocky, but the diet of the US often leads to the children to be much taller. A immigrant parent might be slender, and stay so, but the children are often more likely obese.

      Now, if the tall slender people are more likely to mate, and keep the refuse out, then perhaps a subspecies will develop. OTOH, given that slenderness can be as much a function of surgery as genetics, it might seen a bit far fetched that a master race will develop.

      In any case, it is unclear what the benefit of increasingly tall and frail frames might be. OTOH, it is clear that a tall frail frame has quite a few evolutionary drawbacks, often requiring much more care than a stocky frame.

      As far as the timeline is concerned, the 100,000 year number can be found just be extrapolating the geologic record. About 400,000 years ago the first Homo Sapien appeared. About 200,000 years later, the Homo Sapien N appeared. About 100,000 years later, the Homo Sapein S, or us, appeared and apparently wiped out our cousins to become the dominant species. Hominid type have been around for maybe 5 million years, and have had varying degrees of success. Perhaps we have another 100,000 years and the Homo Sapian will be replaced with another Hominid. Certainly the the optomistic view is that another Homo Sapien subspecies will appear, wipe us out, and carry on the Sapien branch.

    • by conner_bw (120497) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @07:02PM (#16478423) Homepage Journal
      I'm sorry but based on this doctor's own criteria and predictions, his premise is wrong.

      BECAUSE of advances in technology (birth control, leisure, mobility, information, economy, politics, genetic, self-enhancing, the list goes on) beautiful people DO NOT breed. They f*ck each other, sure. But do they have the capability to raise enough offspring to eventually branch into their own subspecies? I doubt any of them have the desire, let alone the capacity to be such a branch. We have a long way to go as a world economy and society to forgo monogamy and long term spousal commitment in order to raise offspring. If perky tits and big dicks were a measure of anything, it's the porno industry. They do not create a statistically meaningful amount of offspring. The underclass, they do.

      Sorry but real people are real ugly for at least another 10,000 years THANKS to technology.

  • by homerjfong (709647) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:39PM (#16477221)
    But when the all clear sounds, which side would you want to be on?
  • by Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) * <seebert42@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:42PM (#16477275) Homepage Journal
    That he's got his use cases mixed. Intelligent, creative people are far less likely to pay attention to personal appearance, where beautiful people are far less likely to pay attention to mental pursuits.
  • by Arathon (1002016) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477283) Journal
    I guess we should all be happy we came along now. Better to be dim-witted, ugly, squat goblin-like creatures while it's still politically incorrect to call us such.
  • Hey!! (Score:5, Funny)

    by nate nice (672391) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477293) Journal
    As a dim-witted, ugly, squat goblin-like creature, I take offense to this!
  • Stats? (Score:5, Funny)

    by Datamonstar (845886) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477295)
    So... what kind of stats do the short goblin-like humans get? Want to make sure I don't inadvertadly lower any of my prime skills. ;P
  • by sam_paris (919837) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477299)
    Mac users and PC users You work out which is which..
  • Fox (Score:5, Funny)

    by DoofusOfDeath (636671) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477309)
    Hey, it's only Fox New's fault if Republicans and Democrats entirely stop cross-breeding!

    (You can't call it a troll if I don't say which one becomes the upper class :p)
  • by sebFlyte (844277) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:43PM (#16477311) Homepage Journal
    "He carried out the report for men's satellite TV channel Bravo." Because I go to Bravo for all my evolutionary biology needs. This sounds like a joke, really. The guy in question got a cheque from a tabloid TV channel, nicked HG Well's idea, and laughed all the way to the bank. Nice work if you can get it.
  • by x_MeRLiN_x (935994) * on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:44PM (#16477317) Homepage
    "However, Dr Curry warns, in 10,000 years time humans may have paid a genetic price for relying on technology. Spoiled by gadgets designed to meet their every need, they could come to resemble domesticated animals." I fail to see the similarities between relying on a human owner and using "gadgets designed to meet our every needs". Technology doesn't think for itself, but who knows where we'll be in such a long time? Apparently, we'll have less advertisements for penis enlargement.
  • by MightyYar (622222) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:47PM (#16477377)
    The problem with this is that throughout history, the ruling class has changed many times. The rich and powerful tend to get beheaded from time-to-time, making way for a new rich and powerful set. Putin has little lineage from Catherine the Great, Chirac has little relation to Marie Antoinette...
  • Hmmmm... soma (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Scrameustache (459504) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:51PM (#16477441) Homepage Journal

    The summary mentions Alphas and Epsilons, but glosses over the transitional Betas, Gammas and Deltas.
  • Umm... (Score:5, Funny)

    by M0bius (26596) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:52PM (#16477445)
    Musicians are proof of how untrue this theory is because they show time and again that the hottest of ladies will sleep with the ugliest of guys as long as they can play a guitar, normalizing the gene pool.
  • by Alizarin Erythrosin (457981) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @05:53PM (#16477475)
    No missing link here, we already have the troll-like humans to prove it.
    Yeah, they're called politicians!

    Come on... high five! Anybody?
  • by mattwarden (699984) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:02PM (#16477611) Homepage

    From the article: 'The descendants of the genetic upper class would be tall, slim, healthy, attractive, intelligent, and creative and a far cry from the "underclass" humans who would have evolved into dim-witted, ugly, squat goblin-like creatures.

    Talk about a setup. I predict 90% of the comments on this article will be modded funny (regardless of whether they actually are).

  • it was the "ugly, squat goblin-like creatures" who were not "dim-witted", but intelligent and ran the world (not an underclass, but they did live underground). While the "tall, slim, healthy, attractive" ones were not at all "intelligent, and creative," but were utterly empty headed vapid frail cattle... literally. they were food. they were all vegetarians and they were regularly slaughtered for the meat eating underrulers

    but why anyone would seek sustenance by eating a bag of antlers like lindsay lohan is beyond me. utter science fiction, on that point alone

  • by wall0159 (881759) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:02PM (#16477617)

    Of course, we all know that the cockroaches will rule by then..

    I, for one, welcome them.. ;-)
  • tag: dumb. (Score:4, Interesting)

    by headkase (533448) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:02PM (#16477619)
    The "evolutionist" didn't even point out that natural evolution for humans is over. It ended when Fire was state-of-the-art. But I'll go out on a limb and say that there will be distinct species of human in 200 years. Not through natural evolution but through genetic engineering. Even if we didn't alter the selection pressures on humans for 100,000 years there would still be enough genetic drift that we wouldn't recognize our decendants. But I guess we'd instinctively look both ways before crossing the street by then....
    Trollin' trollin' trollin' keep those Morlocks trollin'...
  • Rubbish (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Un pobre guey (593801) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:05PM (#16477645) Homepage
    This moronic hypothesis must be decades old.

    It assumes that rich people will stop having sex with poor people. Anybody see any logic flaws here?

  • by Shimmer (3036) <brianberns@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:05PM (#16477653) Homepage Journal
    Is there any evidence at all to support these predictions? I didn't see any in the article. His credentials (London School of Economics) hardly convince me that he's an "expert" in the field of... what? Super-futuristic anthropological speculation, I guess.

    No one alive today knows what the next 100,000 years hold for humanity. No one. It's just too complex a subject and too long a time period to make any reasonable predictions about. Heck, no one even knows what the next 10 or 100 years hold, let alone 100,000.

    This is just a typical sensationalistic "news" story designed to attract eyeballs. It's not based in science or reality. You can make up your own long-term predictions with just as much authority.
  • by justin12345 (846440) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:06PM (#16477671)
    Given that contraception is the real barrier to procreation these days, I guess women will evolve to be forgetful (namely in forgetting to their pill), and men will evolve to be impulsive or stupid (too impulsive to use a condom, or too stupid to use one properly).

    Wait....
  • by rlp (11898) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:10PM (#16477705)
    ... ugly, squat goblin-like creatures

    Yet another dire consequence of too much time playing MMORPG's. As if the recent South Park wasn't warning enough.
  • eLoi Dreams (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Doc Ruby (173196) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:13PM (#16477741) Homepage Journal
    What kind of idiocy is this "genetic theory" from Oliver Curry? Where is the evidence for humans abandoning at least hundreds of generations of "racial" mating exclusion in favor of thousands of generations of "class" inbreeding? Where's the selection criterion forcing that division of mating opportunity by work in much more extreme degree than the millenia-old class system that has failed to produce the results Curry predicts in the future?

    Humans have been dependent on "technology" to reproduce for many thousands of generations. Tech is freeing us ever more from any selection criteria except infectious disease (just more unevenly). Current tech trends make genetics ever less important to using tech, which further decouples it from evolutionary mechanics.

    Curry just wants smooth-skinned women with big eyes and "pert" breasts, who he thinks will prefer "graceful" nerds like him to the exclusion of the "robust" people who like tech less. So what? So he thinks HG Wells' The Time Machine [gutenberg.org] is a prediction of our future more than a social satire on Wells' Victorian classist society. He should stick to hack SF rehashes, and leave the genetics to people who are realistic enough to actually get laid.
  • He is 1/2 write (Score:4, Interesting)

    by earthforce_1 (454968) <earthforce_1@@@yahoo...com> on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:17PM (#16477785) Journal
    I think the species will probably split, but not in the way he thinks. (Assuming we don't wipe ourselves out of existance which is highly likley, but that is another thread)

    Humans will evolve to live in the sea, and with the pressure and gravity difference of other worlds. We will adapt and evolve as our environments dictate, and if technology eventually permits we will actually rewrite our own genetic code to suit our whims.
  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:18PM (#16477793)
    Wasn't this an original Star Trek episode. The Cloud Minders, if memory serves.

    And IIRC, some of them (her) wasn't ugly at all!

    Besides, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Each new race might find themselves quite attractive.

    (Slashdot Rule #17: Any post mentioning Star Trek the original series is to automatically be modded Insightful.)

  • by Cloud K (125581) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @06:53PM (#16478295)
    Those who understand binary and those who don't.

    *ahem*

    Anyway, aren't there already 2... males and females... might as well be completely different species sometimes :P

    Or, to take the controversial line, perhaps the two will be natives and immigrants :)
  • by Pedrito (94783) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @09:10PM (#16479807) Homepage
    Okay, first of all, he's an evolutionary theorist at the London School of Economics. I simply can't believe the BBC is printing such garbage. I mean, I like sci-fi as much as the next guy, but this is pure fantasy.

    But in the nearer future, humans will evolve in 1,000 years into giants between 6ft and 7ft tall, he predicts, while life-spans will have extended to 120 years, Dr Curry claims.

    Well, first of all, in 1000 years, humans won't evolve to be a foot taller. Even if we were to evolve to those average heights, it'd take a lot longer than 1000 years. I would think anyone knowledgeable about evolution and genetic would know that. Second of all, 120 years? Shit, in the next 1000 years, if the past 100 have been any indication, we'll either have wiped ourselves out, or we'll have virtually unlimited lifespans because of medical advances. Natural lifespan will be completely irrelevant.

    Finally, his entire theory hinges on an upper and lower class being maintained and still existing 1000 years from now. I'm not saying 1000 years from now there won't be classes, but look who was in power 1000 years ago. You think their descendents are still in power?

    This guy's living in a fantasy world and for the BBC to publish this as anything but fiction is simply wreckless.
  • by cryptor3 (572787) on Tuesday October 17, 2006 @11:53PM (#16480997) Journal
    The Chinese will survive us all without any doubt.

    I like Chinese, yes I like Chinese.

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