Precursors to Technologies

There are many technologies that have a sort of precursor in natural behaviours. For example:

  • Cocoons could precede clothing
  • Burrows/Lairs could precede houses
  • Nests could precede cribs
  • Hives could precede apartment buildings
  • Pits/Webs could precede hunting traps

Though some are more remote than others, there are many throughlines from natural behaviours to designed tools. How should these features be considered? I’d say the most reasonable solution would be for these natural productions to continue on into later stage, and where applicable these systems allow the early creation of the relevant technologies


I doubt that, like, they have a similar function, but they aren’t precursors at all, you can build a house in a cave without noticing a burrow, sure, these might have inspired some inventions, but things like cocoons → clothing are pretty farfetched. like a beehive won’t become an apartment building if it is given time, in all common sense. These objects are just two things that have a similar function, they are not the same in all ways, nor will they be.

That is if you are just an observer, having all these traits in one isn’t applicable at all, like digging burros and building hives? it makes no evolutionary sense.

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The similar function is all that they really need. To make some new technology, they need to identify a problem, think of a solution, and find a way to contrive that solution from available materials. These precursors would simply be a fully-formed solution to the problem

Let’s look at clothing: A creature wants to protect their skin from prickles on bushes. They realize that cocoons are tough yet light and wearable, so they simply make a cocoon for adults. This would be much quicker than another creature without a cocoon, which has to completely invent the idea of covering the body, and find a useful way to do so

Most cocoons can only be made at certain times of year or at certain developmental points, and at these points you’d need to use the stuff to make your cocoon.

There are other ways to get a cocoon. Their clothing could start out by cutting leg holes in an old cocoon (either their own or taken from an animal), then move on to sewn clothes made of cocoon material, and eventually they figure out textile production like regular cocoonless species

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so i wanna understand something, how can someone derive the idea of apartment buildings from hives?

A hive contains many living spaces to house multiple individuals, like an apartment building. It wouldn’t take much innovation to build it up, expand, and eventually reach apartments

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