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如何在进化中胜出、在大灭绝中存活

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Congratulations. By being here, listening, alive, a member of a growing species, you are one of history's greatest winners

恭喜。能在这里,能够听,能活着,身为一个不断成长之物种的一员,你就是历史上最伟大的赢家之一,
the culmination of a success story four billion years in the making.
花了四十亿年形成之成功故事高点。
You are life's one percent. The losers, the 99 percent of species who have ever lived, are dead
你是生命的前1%。输家们,其余99%曾经存在过的物种,都死了;
killed by fire, flood, asteroids, predation, starvation, ice, heat and the cold math of natural selection.
死因包括大火、洪水、小行星、掠食、饥荒、冰、热,以及物竞天择的冷酷数学。
Your ancestors, back to the earliest fishes, overcame all these challenges.
你们的祖先,回推到最早的鱼类,克服了各种挑战。
You are here because of golden opportunities made possible by mass extinction.
你们会在这里,是因为大灭绝所带来的黄金机会。
It's true. The same is true of your co-winners and relatives.
是真的。对你的共同赢家、亲戚们而言也是如此。
The 34,000 kinds of fishes. How did we all get so lucky? Will we continue to win?
三万四千种鱼类。我们怎么会这么幸运?我们能继续赢下去吗?
I am a fish paleobiologist who uses big data -- the fossil record -- to study how some species win and others lose.
我是鱼类的古生物学家,用大数据、化石记录来研究为什么有些物种能赢,其他的则输了。
The living can't tell us; they know nothing but winning. So, we must speak with the dead.
还活着的无法告诉我们;他们对赢一无所知。所以我们必须与已死的对话。
How do we make dead fishes talk? Museums contain multitudes of beautiful fish fossils,
我们要如何让死鱼说话?博物馆有许多美丽的鱼化石,
but their real beauty emerges when combined with the larger number of ugly, broken fossils, and reduced to ones and zeros.
但要让它们真正的美浮现,要把它们与更多丑陋、破碎的化石结合,然后再缩减为一和零。
I can trawl a 500-million-year database for evolutionary patterns.
我可以在一个五亿年数据库中搜寻进化模式。
For example, fish forms can be captured by coordinates and transformed to reveal major pathways of change and trends through time.
比如,鱼的形式可以用坐标来表示,然后转换来揭示随时间发生的主要改变路径和趋势。
Here is the story of the winners and losers of just one pivotal event I discovered using fossil data.
以下是个关于赢家和输家的关键事件的故事,是我用化石资料发现的。
Let's travel back 360 million years -- six times as long ago as the last dinosaur -- to the Devonian period; a strange world.
让我们回到3.6亿年前--比最后一只恐龙在世的时间还要往回推六倍的时间--回到泥盆纪;一个奇怪的世界。
Armored predators with razor-edge jaws dominated alongside huge fishes with arm bones in their fins.
下巴有剃刀边缘的武装掠食者和鱼鳍中有手臂骨的大鱼是主宰者。
Crab-like fishes scuttled across the sea floor.
像螃蟹的鱼类沉在海底。
The few ray-fin relatives of salmon and tuna cowered at the bottom of the food chain.
鲑鱼和鲔鱼的少数辐鳍亲戚畏缩地待在食物链的最底层。
The few early sharks lived offshore in fear.
少数早期的鲨鱼,恐惧地住在近海。
Your few four-legged ancestors, the tetrapods, struggled in tropical river plains.
你们的四只脚祖先,即四足动物,在热带河流边的平原上挣扎求生。
Ecosystems were crowded. There was no escape, no opportunity in sight. Then the world ended.
生态系统很拥挤。无处可逃,眼前也没有机会。接着世界末日了。
No, it is a good thing. 96 percent of all fish species died during the Hangenberg event, 359 million years ago:
不,这是好事。所有鱼种中的96%都死亡了,这是3.59亿年前的泥盆纪后期灭绝事件:
an interval of fire and ice. A crowded world was disrupted and swept away.
这是段火与冰的时期。拥挤的世界被中断、被彻底泯灭了。

如何在进化中胜出、在大灭绝中存活

Now, you might think that's the end of the story.

你们可能认为故事就到此为止。
The mighty fell, the meek inherited the earth, and here we are. But winning is not that simple.
强大者阵亡,温顺者继承了地球,我们就在这里了。但,要赢并没有那么简单。
The handful of survivors came from many groups -- all greatly outnumbered by their own dead.
许多族群的少量生存者--这些族群都是死亡数远高于存活数。
They ranged from top predator to bottom-feeder, big to small, marine to freshwater.
从最上层的掠食者到最下层的都有,从大到小都有,从海洋到淡水都有。
The extinction was a filter. It merely leveled the playing field.
灭绝是一种过滤。它只是把游乐场给变平等了。
What really counted was what survivors did over the next several million years in that devastated world.
真正重要的是在接下来的数百年间,生存者在那荒芜的世界中做了什么。
The former overlords should have had an advantage.
先前的最高统治者应该会有优势。
They became even larger, storing energy, investing in their young, spreading across the globe,
它们变得更大了,储存能量,投资在孩子身上,散布到全球,
feasting on fishes, keeping what had always worked, and biding their time.
享用鱼类,保持一直以来的运作,等待它们的时机。
Yet they merely persisted for a while, declining without innovating, becoming living fossils.
但,它们只坚持了一下子,没有创新而衰落,变成了活化石。
They were too stuck in their ways and are now largely forgotten.
它们太执着在自己的方式,现在大多已被遗忘。
A few of the long-suffering ray-fins, sharks and four-legged tetrapods went the opposite direction.
少数长期遭受苦难的辐鳍鱼类、鲨鱼和四足动物,走的路则完全相反。
They became smaller -- living fast, dying young, eating little and reproducing rapidly.
它们变小了--生命过得很快,很早逝,吃得少,繁殖快。
They tried new foods, different homes, strange heads and weird bodies.
它们尝试新食物,不同的家园,奇怪的头和怪异的身体。
And they found opportunity, proliferated, and won the future for their 60,000 living species, including you.
它们找到机会,增殖,为它们六万个现存物种赢得了未来,包括你们。
That's why they look familiar. You know their names.
那就是为何它们很眼熟。你们知道它们的名字。
Winning is not about random events or an arms race.
要赢的重点不是随机发生的事件或军备竞赛。
Rather, survivors went down alternative, evolutionary pathways.
而是幸存者走向替代道路、进化的路径。
Some found incredible success, while others became dead fish walking.
有些找到了极大的成功,其他的则是行尸走鱼。
A real scientific term.
这是真的科学术语。
I am now investigating how these pathways to victory and defeat repeat across time.
我现在在研究这些通往胜利和失败的路径如何随时间而重复发生。
My lab has already compiled thousands upon thousands of dead fishes, but many more remain.
我的实验室已经收集了数以千计的死鱼,但还有很多其他的。
However, it is already clear that your ancestors' survival through mass extinction,
然而,现在我们已经能清楚地知道,你们祖先在大灭绝中存活下来,
and their responses in the aftermath made you who you are today.
而它们在事件后的反应,造成了现在的你们。
What does this tell us for the future? As long as a handful of species survive, life will recover.
这告诉我们什么关于未来的信息?只要还有少数物种存活,生命就会恢复。
The versatile and the lucky will not just replace what was lost, but win in new forms.
能随机应变的、运气好的物种,不只会取代已失去的,还会以新形式来赢。
It just might take several million years. Thank you.
只是会花上数百万年。谢谢。

重点单词   查看全部解释    
tropical ['trɔpikəl]

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adj. 热带的,炎热的,热带植物的

 
survive [sə'vaiv]

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vt. 比 ... 活得长,幸免于难,艰难度过

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species ['spi:ʃiz]

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n. (单复同)物种,种类

 
random ['rændəm]

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adj. 随机的,随意的,任意的
adv. 随

 
mighty ['maiti]

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adj. 强有力的,强大的,巨大的
adv.

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meek [mi:k]

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adj. 温顺的,谦恭的

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survival [sə'vaivəl]

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n. 生存,幸存者

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contain [kən'tein]

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vt. 包含,容纳,克制,抑制
vi. 自制

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reveal [ri'vi:l]

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vt. 显示,透露
n. (外墙与门或窗之间的

 
extinction [iks'tiŋkʃən]

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n. 消失,消减,废止

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