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specified complexity

Functionally Specified Complex Information and Organization

Design Disquisitions: Peter S. Williams on Intelligent Design

In the latest post at Design Disquisitions I focus on the excellent work on ID by British philosopher Peter S. Williams. He has published several papers, and has many high quality articles and media presentations on the subject. His work was instrumental in initiating my change of mind from theistic neo-Darwinism to design. Highly recommended stuff! Peter S. Williams on Intelligent Design  

Design Disquisitions: A Dialogue Between Peter S. Williams & Denis Alexander

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Selensky, Shallit, & Koza vs artificial life simulations

It’s always a pleasure to host Dr Selensky’s thoughtful contributions. Here, he tackles the subject of artificial life simulations and the implications of modelling environments, assumptions, algorithms etc: ____________________________ On Modelling Spontaneous Emergence of Programs and Their Evolutionary Self-Improvement Evgeny Selensky Some time ago, I left a comment on Jeffrey Shallit’s blog. We exchanged a couple of phrases. In particular, I referred Jeffrey to the requirement for computational halting in models of artificial life. I praised David Abel’s work, which put him off. In response, Jeffrey recommended that I should “read and understand” the following article. I have done my homework now. However I’d like to post here at UD rather than visit Jeffrey’s blog again. Jeffrey of course is Read More ›

FFT: TJG ponders the design inference- objecting mindset

. . . through a case in point: >>tjguyApril 12, 2017 at 2:28 am rvb8 @2 Thank god (heh:), the obvious has been consigned to the rubbish bin of understanding, and we now prefer evidence, experimentation, and the unobvious, to the vacuous, empty, ‘obvious’. What is the problem with this way of thinking? He just assumes this “obvious” thing too will be relegated to the dustbin of understanding. That is what he believes – which is great, but it is nothing more than opinion/belief/worldview deduction, etc. right now. It is just as possible that the Materialist view of OoL will be relegated to the dustbin of understanding. And get this! He thinks that since we were able to learn how Read More ›

Programming by Accident – The Darwinian Paradigm

The last couple of days I have spent too much time trying to rescue a hard drive.  This drive was intended for a Windows 10 system, but it would not appear anywhere in utilities.  BIOS could recognize it was plugged in, but that was it.  Nothing in Explorer, nothing in Disk Management, not even in the command-line diskpart partitioning utility.  In fact, just plugging the drive in would cause all of these to hang until terminated. I went through the whole litany of troubleshooting procedures: BIOS check, memory diagnostics, different slots, direct plug, external connections, a special cloning hardware connection.  Nothing. Finally, after painstaking effort on multiple different machines I was able to get a Linux command-line terminal on one Read More ›

GP on the Origin of Body Plans [OoBP] challenge

. . . here (at 194) in his amazing engineering thread as he responds to Dionisio: >>Dionisio: Thank you for summarizing that interesting discussion. I will summarize it even more. 1) Nobody knows how morphogenesis is controlled and guided. 2) Moran is no exception to that. 3) “Experts” are no exception to that. 4) However, according to Moran (and, unfortunately, he is probably quite right): “experts do not see a need to encode body plans and brain in our genome” 5) You and I, and probably some more sensible people, do see that need. 6) So, it seems, the problem is not about what we know, but about what we see as a need. Now, I notice that Moran says: Read More ›

RVB8 and the refusal to mark the difference between description and invention

. . . (of the concept, functionally specific, complex organisation and associated information, FSCO/I) Sometimes, a longstanding objector here at UD — such as RVB8 — inadvertently reveals just how weak the objections to the design inference are by persistently clinging to long since cogently answered objections. This phenomenon of ideology triumphing over evident reality is worth highlighting as a headlined post illustrating darwinist rhetorical stratagems and habits. Here is RVB8 in a comment in the current Steve Fuller thread: RVB8, 36: >> for ID or Creationism, I can get the information direct from the creators of the terminology. Dembski for Specified Complexity, Kairos for his invention of FSCO/I, and Behe for Irreducible Complexity.>> For a long time, he and Read More ›

UD Guest Post: Dr Eugen S on the second law of thermodynamics (plus . . . ) vs. “evolution”

Our Physicist and Computer Scientist from Russia — and each element of that balance is very relevant — is back, with more.  MOAR, in fact. This time, he tackles the “terror-fitted depths” of thermodynamics and biosemiotics. (NB: Those needing a backgrounder may find an old UD post here and a more recent one here, helpful.) More rich food for thought for the science-hungry masses, red hot off the press: _________________ >>On the Second Law of Thermodynamics in the context of the origin of life Rudolf Clausius (1822-1888) This note was motivated by my discussions with Russian interlocutors. One of UD readers here has asked me to produce a summary of those discussions, which I am happy to do now. I Read More ›

BTB: Points to ponder as we look at Crick’s understanding of DNA as text, since March 19, 1953

A few days back, I headlined a clip from Crick’s letter to his son Michael, March 19, 1953: The main text is accessible here (with page scans). Sans diagrams: >>My Dear Michael, Jim Watson and I have probably made a most important discovery. We have built a model for the structure of des-oxy-ribose-nucleic-acid (read it carefully) called D.N.A. for short. You may remember that the genes of the chromosomes — which carry the hereditary factors — are made up of protein and D.N.A. Our structure is very beautiful. D.N.A. can be thought of roughly as a very long chain with flat bits sticking out. The flat bits are called the “bases”. […] Now we have two of these chains winding Read More ›

The e-YES Joke shows the power of manipulative framing in rhetoric, media and persuasion

This weekend, someone shared the e-YES joke now making the rounds with me, and I found it on YouTube: [youtube 0Al_V7fsL7g] It seems to be just a prank at first, but on a second look, it shows us how framing distorts perceptions and is potentially quite manipulative. As we consider the various issues now before our civilisation, let us ponder the framing challenge and let us ask ourselves how we may be being manipulated with more serious cases than e-YES vs EYE-s. For instance, we have cases of objectors to design theory who regularly come here and post long ASCII-coded text strings while proclaiming they see no evidence that warrants the design inference on seeing FSCO/I or the more general Read More ›

BTB, Q: Where does the FSCO/I concept come from? (Is it reasonable/ credible?)

A: One of the old sayings of WW II era bomber pilots was that flak gets heaviest over a sensitive target. So, when something as intuitively obvious and easily demonstrated as configuration-based, functionally specific complex organisation and/or associated (explicit or implicit) information — FSCO/I — becomes a focus for objections, that is an implicit sign of its central importance and potential impact on the prevailing a priori materialism school of thought. So, it is appropriate to pause, headline and note for record its source in the works of Orgel, Wicken and Thaxton et al (where Dembski’s link to CSI is also important, cf here from a few days ago; as is the metric approach by Trevors, Abel, Durston Chiu et Read More ›

BTB, Q: Why all of this fuss about specific functionality and FSCO/I, when we already have CSI?

A: Of course, this was long since answered in Dembski’s No Free Lunch, but many (especially those who draw their understanding of ID from what ruthlessly manipulative objectors have to say) will not be familiar with what he has long since said on record. So, let’s clip and highlight, as foundational: >>p. 148:“The great myth of contemporary evolutionary biology is that the information needed to explain complex biological structures can be purchased without intelligence. My aim throughout this book is to dispel that myth . . . . Eigen and his colleagues must have something else in mind besides information simpliciter when they describe the origin of information as the central problem of biology. I submit that what they have Read More ›

BTB, Bob O’H vs the trillion-member observational base of FSCO/I and the design inference on reliable sign

It seems we need more back to basis by us deplorable lightweight ID-iots, again. Here, Bob O’H refuses to take the trillion member case observational base that functionally specific complex organisation and/or associated information [FSCO/I for short] is a reliable sign of intelligently directed configuration as key causal factor. Accordingly, in the answering ID is religion BTB thread, I just answered him at no. 31: [KF, 31:] >>Let’s pick up on points: >>As for FSCO/I, I’ve never seen it been applied to any real example,>> That is an amazing admission for an objector that has been around UD for years, not only as GP above has spoken to, but the many cases that were used as tests/challenges and the like. Read More ›