Denyse O'Leary is the News blogger for Uncommon Descent
Science

The forgotten non-materialist side of James Clerk Maxwell

British physicist David Tyler, who posts here, has a comment in Nature on “Laird of physics” James Clerk Maxwell, particularly the Laird’s disquiet with materialism, a fact not noted in the article on maxwell: As the Victorian age matured, science leaders became increasingly materialistic. At a meeting of the British Association in 1874, President John Read More…

science education

Tennessee would permit critical thinking on received science dogmas

From AAAS’s ScienceInsider we learn: “Bill Allowing Teachers to Challenge Evolution Passes Tennessee House” (Sara Reardon, 7 April 2011): If the bill passes, Tennessee would join Louisiana as the second state to have specific “protection” for the teaching of evolution in the classroom. The effects of the Louisiana law, which passed in 2008, are still Read More…

Darwinism

Darwinism: Cretaceous buttercup a “doubly abominable” mystery, it seems

David Tyler reports on the beautifully preserved Cretaceous “ buttercup”: Many portrayals of habitats purporting to represent the Age of Dinosaurs have conifer trees and ferns, but very little ground cover. As palaeontologists continue their research, they are coming to recognise that the ecosystems were much more diverse. The earliest flowering plants are represented by Read More…

Mind Neuroscience

Great debates: William Lane Craig versus Sam Harris tomorrow night

Topic: Is the Foundation of Morality Natural or Supernatural? (Thursday, April 7 – 7:00pm – 9:00pm Eastern time) Facebook page Live webcast: www.ndtv.net One viewer commented … the atheist damage control machine is going full throttle! Craig absolutely wiped the floor with Krauss. It might be the worst debate performance ever versus Craig, adding Check Read More…

Cosmology

Cosmology: One of cosmic inflation theory’s creators now questions own theory

A theory that attempts to account for the fine tuning of the universe for life may be “deeply flawed,” we learn in Paul J. Steinhardt’s “The Inflation Debate.” Steinhardt is one of the theory’s creators, nevertheless asks, “Abstract: Is the theory at the heart of modern cosmology deeply flawed? Cosmic inflation is so widely accepted Read More…

Atheism Cosmology Intelligent Design

Proponent of multiverses and “our universe as possible simulation” wins this year’s Templeton Prize

Proponent of the multiverse and the universe as simulation wins this year’s Templeton Prize The Prize has been awarded to Martin Rees. As Daniel Cressey tells it in Nature (6 April 2011), Controversial ‘spirituality’ award goes to a scientist for fourth year in a row. Martin Rees, an astrophysicist at the University of Cambridge, UK, Read More…

Biology

Biologist goes to war against language

In “The “Newspeak” of Evolutionary Biology Hopes to Banish the term “Design,” by Design”, Evolution News & Views (April 6, 2011) Casey Luskin tells us The anti-ID biologist Richard Dawkins once said, “Biology is the study of complicated things that give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.” Now some ID critics today Read More…

Human evolution

Human evolution: Did stone tools really change human hands?

In “Stone Tools Influenced Hand Evolution in Human Ancestors, Anthropologists Say,” (ScienceDaily (Mar. 8, 2011), we learn (repeated twice more in a single short piece), that New research from anthropologists at the University of Kent has confirmed Charles Darwin’s speculation that the evolution of unique features in the human hand was influenced by increased tool Read More…