What animals would be the best candidates for being uplifted

Discussion in 'Science Fiction' started by Riothamus, Mar 22, 2012.

  1. Riothamus

    Riothamus Registered User

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    Uplifted animal races are popular figures in science fiction and fantasy and more often than not, people don't often think about it. So besides primates, what animals would be the most likely to achieve sapience?If you consider all possible factors, what manner of species would achieve human like thought processes?
     
  2. Danogzilla

    Danogzilla Couch Commander

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    The standard go to beyond monkeys/apes is dolphins. Probably followed by dogs. I think more interesting options might be octopus or crow. Both intelligent already, both very crafty, and both would bring very different aptitudes to the table.
     
  3. algernoninc

    algernoninc Now I'm an axolotl

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    I would like to read about elephants and bears. I think the subject has already been touched, by Larry Niven in Footfall, and another book that I haven't tracked yet, something about The Right To Arm Bears.
     
  4. Michigan

    Michigan Registered User

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    Been reading David Brin lately?
     
  5. stbnasa

    stbnasa New Member

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    Stephen Baxter did some great work with genetically raised intelligent cuttlefish in his Manifold series. I can't think of any other series I've liked that raised non-human animals, though a lot of aliens use earth animals as their prototypes and models of evolution.
     
  6. Jennifer P

    Jennifer P Registered User

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    My vote would definitely be for dogs. Of course, they're not as close as dolphins, great apes, or crows. However, they already speak our body language and are closely tied to us.
     
  7. Omphalos

    Omphalos Orthodox Herbertian

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    I'd probably go for a book about a war between men and intelligent rats.
     
  8. phil_geo

    phil_geo Rat Thing

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    There's no point in uplifting anything that can't manipulate tools. Dogs and dolphins would be like a race of paraplegic geniuses. I like the idea of uplifting rats or octopi.


    Two racehorses were in the stable and they began bragging.
    The first horse says 'I've been in 30 races and have only lost twice.'
    The second horse says 'Well, I've been in 50 races and have never lost.'

    Just then, they hear a chuckle by the stable door, and there's a greyhound dog walking up to them. The greyhound says, 'That's nothing. I've been in over 200 races and have won them all.'

    The horses are clearly amazed. Finally, one of them manages to speak. 'Wow!' he says, 'A talkin' dog!'
     
  9. Pennarin

    Pennarin Registered User

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    Yeah, octopus and other tentacled creatures, elephants, dolphins, chimps, and apparently bears for some reason I don't yet know.

    Crows and various exotic birds of company are very intelligent, yes, but wouldn't it be cruel to uplift a small creature without grasping limbs, and expect them to live in a human civilization? To remedy this should we rob them of their natural flight ability by making them bigger and regressing their wings to arms?

    Or it might be that, just like dolphins, the act of flying or swimming is such an important part of their existence that it wouldn't matter whether they had grasping limbs or not.
     
  10. Contrarius

    Contrarius You talkin' to me??

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    Don't sell birds short. Several species already use and make simple tools, and especially the psittacine group (parrots) have very dextrous feet.
     
  11. Piousflea

    Piousflea Registered User

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    Humans are, of course, a great candidate for uplift. We certainly don't have the technology (yet) to uplift other species, which means that a Sufficiently Advanced Alien could easily uplift us.

    A sufficiently advanced patron species could uplift nearly any species they wanted to. "Neural lace", "telekinesis", and other "hands-free" technologies would work just as well for an elephant or dolphin as for a human.

    IMO, the defining characteristic of an uplifted species should be its social tendencies. An inherently social species (dolphins, elephants, dogs, pigeons, apes or humans) would make for a very different type of uplift than a species that stays alone or in small family groups (octopus, alligator, bear, most cats, eagle).

    If the patron species is bringing the client species up to near its own technology level, they might prefer to uplift less social species that would be less likely to lead a large-scale rebellion. Otherwise they run the risk of the "uplifted race rebellion" trope.
     
  12. Pennarin

    Pennarin Registered User

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    That's the one I forgot: squid (I notice someone mentioned a cuttlefish, another cephalopod). Social, part of large groups, able to communicate basic information using chromatophores and use it between members to coordinate attempts at obtaining food. As invertebrates they would make a truly alien uplifted intelligence.

    See wiki's entry on cephalopod intelligence.
     
  13. Hobbit

    Hobbit Administrator Staff Member

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  14. psikeyhackr

    psikeyhackr Live Long & Suffer

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    Humans!

    The fact of the matter is that we have not figure out how make anywhere near the most use of human intelligence. We have so called educational systems which practically destroy children's intelligence. Intelligence in an adult is not just about genetics. How many adults have had their intelligence sabotaged?

    So until we learn how to optimise human intelligence why bother giving "genetic" intelligence to any other species?

    psik
     
  15. stbnasa

    stbnasa New Member

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    Maybe they'd know (or figure out) how to use it?
     
  16. D.R. Stevenson

    D.R. Stevenson Autistic Madman

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    Animals I Would Uplift to Human Levels and their Uses

    Racoons - Labor, Exploration, Medical, Science
    Wolves - Used for Military, Law Enforcement, Exploration
    German Shepards - Used for Military, Law Enforcement, Companionship
    Lions - Military, Law Enforcement, Exploration
    Tigers - Military, Law Enforcement, Exploration
    Mountain lion/Panther - Military, Law Enforcement, Exploration
    Gorillas - Military, Law Enforcement, Labor
    Chimpaanzees - Labor, Science, Medical, Administation, Nanny
    Orangutans - Labor, Science, Medical, Administation, Nanny
    Brown/Black Bears - Law Enforcement, Exploration, Labor
    Pigs- Labor, Exploration, Medical, Science
    Meerkat - Exploration, Nanny, Companion
    Anytype of Monkey - Labor, Companion, Science, Medical, Exploration, Nanny
    Fleas - Used to innoculate against disease

    Used For Water World Colonization

    Otters - Exploration, Labor
    Octopus - Exploration, Labor, Medical, Science
    Dolphins/Whales - Exploration, Medical, Science

    Animals Re-Engineered into Something Else

    Condors - Used create as large flying mounts for people to ride the airs with
    Eagles - Just like the condor
    Bull Mastif or Rotweliers - Create a loyal riding beast or defense weapon
    Cows - Re-engineered as artificial human wombs
    Ticks- Used to introduce medicine or poison to the blood stream.You could also used them to steal DNA samples for further use.
    Termites - Used to create bio-fuel

    Didn't China just mix human and rabit DNA?
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  17. Omphalos

    Omphalos Orthodox Herbertian

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    An orangutan as a nanny???

    Though if I ad one, I'd name her Mrs Doubtfire.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2012
  18. D.R. Stevenson

    D.R. Stevenson Autistic Madman

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    I could easily see Orangutans and Chimps as nanny. They seem intelligent and social so why not. Look what happened when that little boy fell in that Gorilla cage. The female nurtured and cared for the wounded child.
     
  19. Riothamus

    Riothamus Registered User

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    Orangutans are generally solitary animals.The largest congregation is usually a mother and child pair who are on the move.
     
  20. D.R. Stevenson

    D.R. Stevenson Autistic Madman

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    They would most likely re-engineer useless behavior it could be engineered out of them or even corrected with training. But then again it would be useful for an orangutan female nanny, she would put all of her attention into your child.;)

    A solitary animal would be a great explorer for unmapped planets or even as workers to man isolated outposts.