Cell biology News

Engineering a life form to fail

Swarmbots: Apparently, it takes ingenuity to get a life form to fail, but the trick may come in handy. From Duke University: Duke University bioengineers design cells that die if they leave the confines of their capsule Duke University researchers have engineered microbes that can’t run away from home; those that do will quickly die […]

Culture Darwinism Evolutionary psychology Natural selection News

The selfish gene: Stay in bed if you have a cold

If you have a cold. From ScienceDaily: Research suggests that our selfish genes are behind the aches, fever The symptoms that accompany illness appear to negatively affect one’s chance of survival and reproduction. So why would this phenomenon persist? Symptoms, say the scientists, are not an adaptation that works on the level of the individual. […]

FYI-FTR Logic and First Principles of right reason Mathematics Science, worldview issues/foundations and society Selective Hyperskepticism Stirring the pot (tentative thoughts/explorations)

FYI-FTR: On Ehrlich’s unified overview of numbers great and small (HT: DS)

Over the past month in response to a suggestion on an infinite temporal past (and the counter argument that such is dubious), there has been quite an exchange on numbers. In that context, it is worth headlining FYI/FTR, HT DS, a unification with continuum — oops, link —  based on surreals discussed by Ehrlich: where […]

Human evolution News Religion

Moralistic gods explain growth of human society?

Abstract from Nature: Moralistic gods, supernatural punishment and the expansion of human sociality Since the origins of agriculture, the scale of human cooperation and societal complexity has dramatically expanded. This fact challenges standard evolutionary explanations of prosociality because well-studied mechanisms of cooperation based on genetic relatedness, reciprocity and partner choice falter as people increasingly engage […]

Genetics Genomics Intelligent Design

Information jumps again: some more facts, and thoughts, about Prickle 1 and taxonomically restricted genes.

  My previous post about information jumps, based on the example of the Prickle 1 protein, has generated a very interesting discussion, still ongoing. I add here some more thoughts about an aspect which has not been really analyzed in the first post, and which can probably contribute to the discussion. I will give here […]

Cambrian explosion Darwinism Intelligent Design News

A guide to the Meyer Marshall debate, with notes

From Sean Pitman (2016): Late last year there was an interesting debate on Premier Christian Radio, “Unbelievable” with Justin Brierley between Stephen Meyer and Charles Marshall over Meyer’s latest book,Darwin’s Doubt. Marshall, a UC Berkeley paleontologist, had published a review of the book in the journal Science a few months earlier and this was Meyer’s […]

Cell biology News Origin Of Life

Excerpt from A Brief History of Creation features Carl Woese

“One of the world’s most important biological thinkers.” From Scientific American: Excerpted from A Brief History of Creation by Bill Mesler and H. James Cleaves III. Copyright © 2016 by Bill Mesler and H. James Cleaves III. With permission of the publisher, W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. The year is 3,500,000,000 […]

Intelligent Design Natural selection News

Natural selection has limits? Who knew?

From Trends in Genetics: Evolutionary theory predicts that factors such as a small population size or low recombination rate can limit the action of natural selection. The emerging field of comparative population genomics offers an opportunity to evaluate these hypotheses. However, classical theoretical predictions assume that populations are at demographic equilibrium. This assumption is likely […]

News Peer review

Plagiarism in science text, not just journals?

From David Morrison at Phylonetworks: Some of you may have noticed the recent publication of the following book: Dan Graur (2016) Molecular and Genome Evolution. Sinauer Associates. Chapter 6 is of interest to the readers of this blog, being entitled “Reticulate evolution and phylogenetic networks”. Unfortunately, as originally published, not all of the figures in […]

Culture Media News

New at MercatorNet

From O’Leary for News’ other blog, Connecting… Apple vs. FBI: Free internet is at stake. Few analysts agree with the FBI that it would end with just this one case. It can’t. Online medical information: Help, hype, or harm? A new coinage, “cyberchondria,” refers to the worry some people experience from overdosing on medical information […]