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Orangutan Culture: "Ideas Worth Spreading"? - in my latest at +Scientific American, I discuss a hypothesis advanced by a group of researchers that orangutan culture is transmitted at the level of ideas rather than at the level of behaviors.

The implication of this tool use hypothesis is that individuals from communities in which tool use has not been observed are indeed cognitively capable of tool use; it isn’t that they’re somehow less mentally apt. Instead, the spontaneous use of a tool simply hasn’t occurred in the first place, or if it has, circumstances have made it impossible to spread throughout the group.
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