Empiricism is a theory that asserts that knowledge is derived from sense-experience. This idea was introduced by John Locke, David Hume and George Berkeley. However, the assertion fails to show the origin, creation and evolution of information. It also fails to prove that not all we sense or experience are true or real. Because of these missing pieces, a new school of thought I named Originemology was born. My thesis on the comparative behavioral and cognitive study of how dogs of different breeds acquire information is partially presented in this article.
Zero is the hero of this experiment. I used him as my specimen to validate empirically the principles behind Originemology and Codexation. I picked him for the experiment because he has the ability to learn things quicker. His mind, strength, speed and curiosity makes him the best candidate. This marvelous, handsome, intelligent, funny, spoiled four footed baby of mine is a great giant Alaskan Malamute - a domesticated dog usually associated with arctic sled dogs. His face has black masklike facial markings that can be usually seen on a raccoon's face. His eyes are brown. His ears are erect and triangular. He has a grayish white wooly thick coat which I love to bear hug, and a black curled bushy tail that wags always in the air signaling a welcoming smile. He loves to run here, there and everywhere chasing after squirrels, raccoons and birds. He plays with me fetch ball, tag of war, hide and seek, running around the house and even pillow wrestling. But with all of these childish/ doggish interactions, there was something missing between us - Communication.
Some of us usually ignore this lovely cuddly being because we label them as dogs, as animals, as low life-form. But I'm sorry to disagree, these dogs are just like us humans and humans are nothing more than dogs. We might be unique in physical appearances but all of us are close relatives in one way or the other. They may have four feet, but they are more skilled and more intelligent than we are as you will see later. They are loving, caring and most of all they are more that simply a dedicated friend. But the burden of understanding them is within us. And in order to do so, we need to put ourselves into their shoes - be a dog – A intelligent One.
The main purpose of this experiment is to provide observable and detectable solutions to the following research questions:
i. How information is acquired by organism?
ii. Where does information come from?
iii. Can the acquisition of information be controlled piece by piece?
iv. How can Zero express what is in his mind?
v. How can Zero transfer his knowledge to another breed like a chihuahua?
vi. How does Zero transfer his abstract ideas to physical reality?
vii. Is there such thing as Instinct? Alpha Dominance? Territorial Markings? Born Aggressiveness?
I also invented a bowlingual communication device I named iBowWow that will translate zero's language to human language using a simple apps or computer program codenamed B2W.
The experiment, The Malamute-Chihuahua Codexation, was devised in order to investigate how Zero can express his abstract ideas objectively materially. A supervised environment was set-up at all times when he was a puppy. The main objective was to control the flow of information from his surrounding and into his mind. No one - people, animals, objects, sounds - was allowed to come near his crib. Also, pieces of information were introduced bit by bit during the duration of the experiment. When Zero reached his adulthood, a new breed of dog was introduced to the experiment in order to determine how information is transferred from one species to another species. However, the overall conclusions of the experiment will not be presented here but will be addressed in my book.
But before we discuss some parts of the experiment, let us first define what is communication? When a friend speaks to you and you don't answer back, communication here is not present. This is a one way communication. But when your friend nods or speaks back, then this scenario is a two way communication. We call this a conversation. When you tell your dog “down” and he is still sitting, conversation is not present. When you tell your dog “down” and he obediently lies down - smile and pat yourself on the back- communication is taking place. In communication, there are always two important elements: action-reaction, cause-effect, stimuli-response or transmitter-receiver.
In the real world, all things in our minds are nothing but ideas. They are abstract in nature. Since the mind is empty when we were first born, information come to us gradually and evolve eventually. They are not factual, physical, real or something that you can hold or feel likes a solid object. They are just spheres of energy. And the funny thing, when you express them out again via your senses, they come out as abstract too. This is what I called the Zizo Effect: what zips in must zips out. When you think of an apple and send the image of an apple to your hand so to speak, the apple stays as an "image" on your hand. Literally, your hand does not have the ability to create a physical apple - a codexation dilemma. The situation that is taking place is the same thing when you say sit to your dog. The dog does not have a single clue what the word sit means. Your dog doesn't even have a slightest idea, even an image picture of “sitting” in his mind. Your commands are all abstract to the dog. The words are nothing but high and low pitches without any meaning at all. They are ups and downs of energy moving in waves. They are like the dit and dat in a morse code - no words are spoken, but the codes can be utilized to communicate.
Zero might be a dog but he figured out also a smart experiment that always gets my attention. I discovered this when I always stop him from munching my colorful kindergarten chair sitting in the backyard. I use this small chair every time I teach zero a new trick. This could be the stimuli that triggers me to response to his act. Every time he tosses the chair, like wrestling it all over the place, moving from the cemented patio to the wooden deck, he always creates this annoying noise. A noise that will prompt me to get up from the couch, walk to the screen sliding door and whistling a sharp shushing sound to make him stop. I thought before that this playful scene is just an ordinary dog game; just like how he plays his favorite squirrel doll, his soccer ball and his string and plastic bones. But an "ahah" moment came to me that day when I compared his behavior while he was playing with his rug doll and when he was playing with the small chair. The chair was a tool that Zero used to communicate with me. Through this chair, he trained me to get up the couch, slide the door open and let him get inside the house. A nice move from Zero. He used the power of association, tagging or labelling to communicate. But how did he figure out this technique?
So I perform a simple test that will provide some clues. Zero has lots of toys. However, there are two special toys that he always love to play -- a squirrel rug doll and a colored wooden chair. He treats both of them differently. He loves to toss the doll into the air and bangs the chair to create sound. I notice every time he bangs the chair, I mechanically get up off my feet from watching TV, slide the glass door and shunt him from making that irritating sound. These events happen over and over again almost everyday to a point that he uses this tool to communicate to me if he wants to get inside the house.
So one day, when Zero was playing with his doll, I purposely showed up myself behind the glass, opened wide the sliding door and stand up still in front of him. Then I went back to watch TV and waited for him to go inside. But nothing happened. So I decided to close the screen door. However, after few more hours I heard the chair was banging around all over the wooden deck and into the cemented pavement. I opened the door, zero dropped the chair and quickly run inside the house. To Zero, banging the chair means I will mechanically get up off my feet, slide open the glass door, shunt him from making loud noises and walk back to the couch. Once the door is open, Zero will simply walk inside the house.
However during the investigation, Zero didn't know that every time he bangs the chair, I sneak up from my couch and observe him from the inside. His actions confirm my gut feeling that he is actually secretly glancing at the sliding door for me to show up every time he bangs the chair. However, if his expectation doesn't happen he will just bang the chair harder and harder until he gets my attention. This behavior just proves the validity of codexation.
Human beings are the funniest creatures on earth. We love to complicate our lives. We create a lot of words like apple, banana, orange and many more. We create this word factory in order that other humans will understand us. But do humans really need them? Yes we do! But it is wrong to think that communication can only be done through words alone! Chimpanzees do not need this complex way of memorizing words to communicate. When a chimp wants an apple, all he needs to do is point to an apple. If he needs a banana, he does not need to memorize the word banana, stores it in his memory bank, or says the word banana. Logically he simply points to the banana. This proves that communication is not only through speaking - it can also be thru eye contact, touch, smell or simply waving an object.
The sense of touch is the first sensor to evolve and touching is the first form of communication discovered. Eventually, it evolves to pointing. Pointing can be done using your eyes, by rolling your eyeballs; your nose, your lips and with your ears if you can wiggle them. Just kidding. Seriously, what I am saying here is that we can communicate using our five external senses: hands (touching), eyes (seeing), mouth (tasting), ears (hearing) and nose (smelling). Zero might be different, but he has all the senses that humans have. He might not say a word but he can talk to us using his other senses. Zero does it through body language. A wagging tail is a sign language for a friendly behavior, a welcoming smile or a warm relaxing hugs.
Zero can ask food anytime he needs it by using communication by association. This technique can be developed by asking your dog to get anything you want by simply pointing to that object. Once he learns to get things by pointing, you are actually associating objects to his needs. If you associate a bell as "let me go out", then everytime he picks it up you let your dog out. If you associate a plate as "give me food", then everytime he picks up the plate give him some food. If you associate a soccer ball as "can we play", then when he picks up the ball be sure to play with him. Communication by association is actually called labelling.
After a year, I decided to alter the way I communicate with Zero. Zero will teach me to understand what is in his mind by "visual talk" (VT). Every action he does, whether it is through "barking", body language, eye contact or simply picking up stuff, I will make it a point to understand what is in his thoughts. This will be a great challenge but I know I will learn something from him.
One good example how zero excites my thoughts is by playing with his favorite red soccer ball. We usually start the game at the center of the backyard. He will bring the ball under my legs as we hold it together. In a croaching position, I will count one to ten, jerk out the ball under my legs and give it a mighty toss behind me. Zero will excitedly fetch the ball, run it back all the way to his goal (a makeshift bed with a heavy-duty futon mattress) and look at me as if he was saying "I win". After then he will come back to me with the ball on his mouth and start all over again. One time during our play, I was tackled up to the air and fell down on my side. I just laughed at the incident as I was standing and brushing myself up as zero looked at me with a laughing face. Now, Zero is 102 pounds and seven months old.
Another example of this VT is when everytime I sit on the porch, Zero will come to me with a tennis ball on his mouth. I know he tells me to play with him. But this time, all I do is throw the ball. He picks it up and brings it back to my hand. After a couple of throwing; he will just let the ball rolls, sit in front of me, stare at me straight into my eyes, look at the area where I throw the ball and then look back at me - as if he was telling me, "Ok it is now your turn to pick up the ball." I will get up off my feet, pick the ball and go back to the porch where Zero is already lying down on his back. Zero's body language tells me to scratch his belly and neck. And to confirm this gesture, as I say the command "scratch", he eventually bring his two feet together and act out a scratching motion. This moment, my hairy good friend created another good funny day with a well designed bonding.
Sometimes playing with him gets out of hand. Remember the futon that I was telling you; he grabbed it off from the sofa, dragged it out all over the backyard and ripped it like a devastating hurricane. ( you can see the mess below). Did I get mad? Nope! He is still a baby and I know he just wants to play. After all he is forgiven since he always stays all day in the backyard without any playmates. However, one afternoon, my new sofa just arrived from the dealer. It was a three section cushion with five throw pillows. And this day was an exceptional time for Zero. I let him into the living room proudly showing him how elegant and comfy the sofa is. I even let him jump into it and let him feel its soft texture. Although it was so abrupt I can see from his eyes that he was happy since I gave him the chance to lie down on the couch. Btw, Zero is restricted to go to any rooms inside the house except the kitchen which is adjacent to both living rooms and perpendicular to the garage. After that quick moment, as I am taking him to the kitchen, the doorbell rings. My neighbor John came by excitedly telling me how he got the ranch in Texas. The conversation was so lengthy that I have forgotten Zero for a moment. When John left the house, I went back to the kitchen and Zero was lying down in his angelic position. I know from that body language that he did something wrong. And my hunch was correct, all the throw pillows were on the floor, two of them were out of its covers and stuffed cottons were all over the place. Did I get mad?
I was so "furious". I scolded him like a teenager and even swung his leash on his behind in a playful manner telling him I will spank him. I took his 30 feet long chain and tied him under the tree. I implied through this chain th
at he was grounded. I went back to the room and cleaned up the mess. Through the sliding glass door, I can see Zero in his angelic position again with both front feet curved in under his breast. I knew at that time, he was really sorry. After a few minutes, I went out of the backyard and unleashed him without me saying any word or even touching his back. With his head and tail down, he walked behind me towards the deck. In the back of my mind, I was wishing that my girlfriend will have the same composure as Zero when we have arguments. As I was seating on the step of the deck, Zero with his head down and tail wagging downward approached me like he was asking for forgiveness. I pushed him away once, twice, several times yet he insisted to be next to me. When our eyes met, I felt this bu
rning sensation of joy, sincerity and friends
hip deep inside my heart. This visual talk sparked me to grab him under my arms, hug him so tight and kiss him affectionately. From his gesture, I learned a very memorable lesson in life. Zero knew he made a mistake. In spite of the fact that he was scolded, he was spanked and he was chained; Zero with his head down and his wagging tail down to the ground, slowly approached me without any words, without any confrontations, without any feelings of heartaches - surrendering his totality through a simple body language most probably saying - "I'm sorry joey, can you just give me a hug - please."
Zero is progressing in his vocabulary. He knows a lot of common commands now such as:
1. SIT for sitting down,
2. DOWN for lying down,
3. ASK for asking food,
4. PLATE for ge
tting his food tray,
5. PLAY for playing ball,
6. BALL for fetching the ball,
7. BANG for playing dead,
8. SCRATCH for rubbing his tummy,
9. WAIT for stopping,
10. GO for do it,
11. GOOD BOY for behaving obediently,
12. NO for do not do that,
13. RUN for jogging with me,
14. GET for fetching things,
15. DROP for letting go things in his mouth,
14. PICK for selecting which of my palm has food,
15. FIVE for shaking or high five shake,
16. IN for entering inside a tube,
17. UP for walking up an incline plane,
18. JUMP for jumping over an obstacle course,
19. SPEAK for just saying anything,
20. SAY for repeating what we say,
On the other hand, I learned some of his vocabulary.
1. When he gets his plate, he tells me he needs food.
2. When he gets his ball, he tells me he wants to play.
3. When he drops the ball in front of me, he tells me kick it.
4. When he rubs the floor, he tells us
that he wants to be tickled.
5. When he stays beside the door, he tells me he wants to go outside.
6. When he stays sitting outside the door, he tells me "let me in".
7. When he lies full body down, he tells us "No”.
8. When he touches my leg with his paw, he tells me to give him food.
9. When he noses my hand, he tells me massage my neck.
10. When he bows his head and drops his tail, he tells me he is sorry.
11. When he waves his tail up, he tells me "Hello"
12. When he gets his bone toy, he tells me he wants to go to the park.
13. When he sits next to a water cooler, he wants to drink.
14. When he sits next to me in the park, he wants to go home now.
15. When he starts to gallop, he tells me he wants to run with me.
This day is another interesting day. As I was brushing my teeth this morning, I saw Zero pooping in the backyard. To my suprised, when he was done, he started covering his mess using his nose as a scoop. And he was covering it by going ar
ound the poop, raking his nose and using his feet. I know this is unusual, because dogs usually used their hind legs. I can only speculate, that maybe he acquired this behavior from us. Because everytime he finished pooping, we usually cover his droppings with garden soil. And if he acquired this type of behavior from us, then again I assure you this is not genetic.
After studying how Zero acquires information from me and his surroundings, I step up one level higher experimenting just to prove if the principle behind Codexation and Originemology works. Furthermore, through this ex
periment, I will also prove that the missing link most evolutionists are looking for can be found in this concept of helixal-portrayal I coined Mirror-Copying or The MC-Codexation.
The objective of the malamute-chihuahua experiment is to find out if Zero can transfer the information he learned from me to another dog of the same breed (malamute) and dog of different breed (chihuahua). The information he inlearned will be transferred through communication by association or labeling. Labeling is a part of inlearning where the abstract idea is transformed to a physical reality by association in order that such idea will be stored permanently in the brain.
A strict protocol must be observed here. The set-up must be in a controlled environment where the dogs are not allowed to intermingle with another dogs until the objective is met. Three main objects are used for communication by association. A ball will represent the word play, a plate for food and a toy bone for take me out for a walk. No other objects at all will be present in the controlled environment.
The Bark to Word Codexator:
The iBowWow is a device that I invented for necessity. It is a decoding - codexating equipment that analyzes the voice signatures of barking and wooing through the waveforms produce in an oscilloscope. Some of these voice signatures are presented in my Google+. The first two waveforms you'll find represent the word Peanut while the remaining two represent the word Zero. The complete procedures and conclusions of the MC-Codex Experiment can be found in my book "Originemology".
The theory of everything:
"Find food to live and Carry life to enjoy"
~ Joey Lawsin