Convergent evolution

A software engineer on convergent evolution

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Further to “Convergent evolution seen in 100s of genes,”

I’m a software engineer, and we re-use components all the time for different programs that have no “common ancestor”. E.g. – I can develop my String function library and use it in my web application and my Eclipse IDE plug-in, and those two Java programs have nothing in common. So you find the same bits in two different programs because I am the developer of both programs. But the two programs don’t extend from a common program that was used for some other purpose – they have no “common ancestor” program.

Now with that in mind, take a look at this recent article from Science Daily, which Mysterious Micah sent me. …

“We had expected to find identical changes in maybe a dozen or so genes but to see nearly 200 is incredible,” explains Dr Joe Parker, from Queen Mary’s School of Biological and Chemical Sciences and first author on the paper.

High rates of convergent evolution are only “incredible” if we simply assume as an article of faith that there is no design, and that therefore there is nothing to research. It shall remain then, forever, incredible. No matter why the design exists.

A price paid, shall we say, for dogmatism killing curiosity.

227 Replies to “A software engineer on convergent evolution

  1. 1
    Querius says:

    Nicely stated! This is a good example of a paradigm blinding the observer. Easy to do.

  2. 2
    Collin says:

    I think that this is very important and shows signs of design. But why don’t we find gills on whales or wings on cats?

  3. 3
    cantor says:

    But why don’t we find gills on whales or wings on cats?

    because they don’t have them?

  4. 4
    JoeCoder says:

    As a software developer I can also vouch for this 100%.

    As for gills on whales I don’t think they would be able to provide enough oxygen for such a high metabolism animal.

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    While it is important to note how computer programmers may reuse particular strings of code in different computer programs that don’t have a ‘common ancestor’, (save for the programmer himself) and how that conforms to what is being found in similar sequences of code being found in widely divergent genomes, it is also important to note how these genetic programs differ from humanly designed computer programs, i.e. how much more ingenious genetic codes are in their design. For instance,,,

    ‘It’s becoming extremely problematic to explain how the genome could arise and how these multiple levels of overlapping information could arise, since our best computer programmers can’t even conceive of overlapping codes. The genome dwarfs all of the computer information technology that man has developed. So I think that it is very problematic to imagine how you can achieve that through random changes in the code.,,, and there is no Junk DNA in these codes. More and More the genome looks likes a super-super set of programs.,, More and more it looks like top down design and not just bottom up chance discovery of making complex systems.’ –
    Dr. John Sanford – 31 second mark of following video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?f.....dM_s#t=31s

    Multiple Overlapping Genetic Codes Profoundly Reduce the Probability of Beneficial Mutation George Montañez 1, Robert J. Marks II 2, Jorge Fernandez 3 and John C. Sanford 4 – published online May 2013
    Excerpt: In the last decade, we have discovered still another aspect of the multi- dimensional genome. We now know that DNA sequences are typically “ poly-functional” [38]. Trifanov previously had described at least 12 genetic codes that any given nucleotide can contribute to [39,40], and showed that a given base-pair can contribute to multiple overlapping codes simultaneously. The first evidence of overlapping protein-coding sequences in viruses caused quite a stir, but since then it has become recognized as typical. According to Kapronov et al., “it is not unusual that a single base-pair can be part of an intricate network of multiple isoforms of overlapping sense and antisense transcripts, the majority of which are unannotated” [41]. The ENCODE project [42] has confirmed that this phenomenon is ubiquitous in higher genomes, wherein a given DNA sequence routinely encodes multiple overlapping messages, meaning that a single nucleotide can contribute to two or more genetic codes. Most recently, Itzkovitz et al. analyzed protein coding regions of 700 species, and showed that virtually all forms of life have extensive overlapping information in their genomes [43].
    http://www.worldscientific.com.....08728_0006

    Of related note is how the engineering in a cell easily surpasses our best humanly engineered systems. For instance here are a few examples that will give a small, i.e. a very small, glimpse of how the engineering in the cell easily surpasses man-made devices,,

    Bio-Mechanics – Don’t the Intricacy & Ubiquity of Molecular Machines Provide Evidence for Design? by Casey Luskin – Spring 2012
    Excerpt:,, biomolecular machines have a major difference that distinguishes them from human technology: their energetic efficiency dwarfs our best accomplishments. One paper observes that molecular machines “are generally more efficient than their macroscale counterparts,”7 and another suggests that the efficiency of the bacterial flagellum “could be ~100%.”8 Human engineers can only dream of creating such devices.
    http://www.salvomag.com/new/ar.....design.php

    Problems with the Metaphor of a Cell as “Machine” – July 2012
    Excerpt: Too often, we envision the cell as a “factory” containing a fixed complement of “machinery” operating according to “instructions” (or “software” or “blueprints”) contained in the genome and spitting out the “gene products” (proteins) that sustain life.
    Many things are wrong with this picture, but one of the problems that needs to be discussed more openly is the fact that in this “factory,” many if not most of the “machines” are themselves constantly turning over — being assembled when and where they are needed, and disassembled afterwards. The mitotic spindle…is one of the best-known examples, but there are many others.
    Funny sort of “factory” that, with the “machinery” itself popping in and out of existence as needed!,,,
    – James Barham
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....62691.html

    DNA – Replication, Wrapping & Mitosis – video (notes in description)
    http://vimeo.com/33882804

    Endoplasmic Reticulum: Scientists Image ‘Parking Garage’ Helix Structure in Protein-Making Factory – July 2013
    Excerpt: The endoplasmic reticulum (ER) is the protein-making factory within cells consisting of tightly stacked sheets of membrane studded with the molecules that make proteins. In a study published July 18th by Cell Press in the journal Cell, researchers have refined a new microscopy imaging method to visualize exactly how the ER sheets are stacked, revealing that the 3D structure of the sheets resembles a parking garage with helical ramps connecting the different levels. This structure allows for the dense packing of ER sheets, maximizing the amount of space available for protein synthesis within the small confines of a cell.
    “The geometry of the ER is so complex that its details have never been fully described, even now, 60 years after its discovery,” says study author Mark Terasaki of the University of Connecticut Health Center. “Our findings are likely to lead to new insights into the functioning of this important organelle.”,,,
    ,, this “parking garage” structure optimizes the dense packing of ER sheets and thus maximizes the number of protein-synthesizing molecules called ribosomes within the restricted space of a cell. When a cell needs to secrete more proteins, it can reduce the distances between sheets to pack even more membrane into the same space. Think of it as a parking garage that can add more levels as it gets full.,,,
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....130617.htm

    etc.. etc..

  6. 6
    kairosfocus says:

    Also, we do have wings on “rats” . . . we call them bats. KF

  7. 7
    Collin says:

    “Also, we do have wings on “rats” . . . we call them bats. KF.” Well played.

    My atheist friend said that whales should have gills because they are much more efficient, but it would take too many millions of years for a mammal to evolve them so it hasn’t happened yet. But it doesn’t seem like gills could provide very much oxygen for their giant brains. I would like to ask a marine biologist about this.

    I also know that you can’t just plug in a feature into a program or a species. It would be like running Mario Bros on Windows. You have to program an entire emulator device to make it work. And why would a designer do that to a whale when its lungs work just fine?

    But does that mean that the designer is not omnipotent?

  8. 8
    Mapou says:

    Although I see the author’s intent and it’s a good one, I think the analogy is a little on the faulty side. As it turns out, echolocating bats and whales do have a common ancestor, some primitive mammal or other. The problem is that the two species branched out possibly millions of years before almost identical and highly complex gene segments for echolocation appeared in both.

    Stating that this is highly improbable (incredible) is to miss the point entirely in my opinion. The probability of that happening via natural means is exactly zero. Why? Because the random nature of gene mutations guarantees that the echolocating gene segments would be dissimilar in the two species. All programmers know that there is a huge number of ways to design and code a word processor. Imagine how many ways there are to design and code something as enormously complex as echolocation. Entire neuronal subnetworks with complex sensorimotor programs would have to be designed to handle the generation and interpretation of the signals. It would come as no surprise to me if bats and whales turn out to have identical genetic codes for the neural circuitry, too.

    Inescapable conclusion from the above: The theory of evolution is soundly falsified.

  9. 9
    Mapou says:

    @ Collin:

    But does that mean that the designer is not omnipotent?

    Absolutely. Omnipotence is a seriously flawed concept.

  10. 10
    kairosfocus says:

    I should add, I heard about but did mot even attempt code interweaving, I rejoiced and gave fervent thanks that we could get affordable 1k x 4 bit RAM and 2k x 8 EPROMs. (I have a neighbour who was of an earlier generation, and when he built an astronomically expensive 1 MB RAM for research on video processing, people literally travelled across a continent just to see it.) If you want a single smoking gun on the DNA code, interweaving is it.

  11. 11
    kairosfocus says:

    M, I would suggest that there is no need to get into debates over omnipotence to address issues of inductively grounding reliable signs of design as causal process. But, in phil and theol, the blanket claim that omnipotence is flawed is a dubious assertion. It is subtle and challenging, but that does not mean flawed, any more than the sophistication in ever so many branches of math reflect flaws. KF

  12. 12
    Mapou says:

    kairosfocus @11:

    But, in phil and theol, the blanket claim that omnipotence is flawed is a dubious assertion.

    Maybe so but, from my perspective, neither philosophy nor theology is immune to logic. It’s the other way around. Omnipotence is a flawed concept simply because it leads to an infinite regress.

  13. 13
    LT says:

    @Mapou 12

    Omnipotence is a flawed concept simply because it leads to an infinite regress

    Only if you presume a naive definition of omnipotence. Very few theists would claim that being omnipotent means that God could do logically incoherent things.

  14. 14
    bornagain77 says:

    not calling anyone here a new atheist,,but I find it strange that when atheists argue against the omnipotence of God, they usually try to use logical contradictions and never pause to consider that they themselves cannot even create a single photon from their own thought, much less an entire universe.,, A few notes along that line,,

    a ‘uncollapsed’ photon, in its quantum wave state, is mathematically defined as ‘infinite’ information:

    Wave function
    Excerpt “wave functions form an abstract vector space”,,, This vector space is infinite-dimensional, because there is no finite set of functions which can be added together in various combinations to create every possible function.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/W.....ctor_space

    Explaining Information Transfer in Quantum Teleportation: Armond Duwell †‡ University of Pittsburgh
    Excerpt: In contrast to a classical bit, the description of a (photon) qubit requires an infinite amount of information. The amount of information is infinite because two real numbers are required in the expansion of the state vector of a two state quantum system (Jozsa 1997, 1)
    http://www.cas.umt.edu/phil/fa.....lPSA2K.pdf

    Quantum Computing – Stanford Encyclopedia
    Excerpt: Theoretically, a single qubit can store an infinite amount of information, yet when measured (and thus collapsing the Quantum Wave state) it yields only the classical result (0 or 1),,,
    http://plato.stanford.edu/entr.....tcomp/#2.1

    Thus every time we see (observe) a single photon of ‘material’ reality we are actually seeing just a single bit of information that was originally created from a very specific set of infinite information that was known by the consciousness that preceded material reality. i.e. information known only by the infinite Mind of omniscient God!

    Job 38:19-20
    “What is the way to the abode of light? And where does darkness reside? Can you take them to their places? Do you know the paths to their dwellings?”

    “When I consider what marvelous things men have understood, what he has inquired into and contrived, I know only too clearly that the human mind is a work of God, and one of the most excellent.” Yet the potential of the human mind “… is separated from the Divine knowledge by an infinite interval.”
    (Poupard, Cardinal Paul. Galileo Galilei. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 1983, p. 101.)

    Besides photons, even space-time itself renders proof towards the omniscience/omnipotence of God:

    “It always bothers me that in spite of all this local business, what goes on in a tiny, no matter how tiny, region of space, and no matter how tiny a region of time, according to laws as we understand them today, it takes a computing machine an infinite number of logical operations to figure out. Now how can all that be going on in that tiny space? Why should it take an infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do?”
    – Richard Feynman – one of the founding fathers of QED (Quantum Electrodynamics)
    Quote taken from the 6:45 minute mark of the following video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=obCjODeoLVw

    THE INFINITY PUZZLE: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe
    Excerpt: In quantum electrodynamics, which applies quantum mechanics to the electromagnetic field and its interactions with matter, the equations led to infinite results for the self-energy or mass of the electron. After nearly two decades of effort, this problem was solved after World War II by a procedure called renormalization, in which the infinities are rolled up into the electron’s observed mass and charge, and are thereafter conveniently ignored. Richard Feynman, who shared the 1965 Nobel Prize with Julian Schwinger and Sin-Itiro Tomonaga for this breakthrough, referred to this sleight of hand as “brushing infinity under the rug.”
    http://www.americanscientist.o.....g-infinity

    I don’t know about Feynman, but as for myself, being a Christian Theist, I find it rather comforting to know that it takes an ‘infinite amount of logic to figure out what one stinky tiny bit of space-time is going to do’:

    John1:1
    “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

    of note: ‘the Word’ in John1:1 is translated from ‘Logos’ in Greek. Logos is the root word from which we derive our modern word logic
    http://etymonline.com/?term=logic

    supplemental note;

    As well as the universe having a transcendent beginning, thus confirming the unique Theistic postulation of Genesis 1:1, the following recent discovery of a ‘Dark Age’ for the early universe uncannily matches up with the Bible passage in Job 38:4-11.

    For the first 400,000 years of our universe’s expansion, the universe was a seething maelstrom of energy and sub-atomic particles. This maelstrom was so hot, that sub-atomic particles trying to form into atoms would have been blasted apart instantly, and so dense, light could not travel more than a short distance before being absorbed. If you could somehow live long enough to look around in such conditions, you would see nothing but brilliant white light in all directions. When the cosmos was about 400,000 years old, it had cooled to about the temperature of the surface of the sun. The last light from the “Big Bang” shone forth at that time. This “light” is still detectable today as the Cosmic Background Radiation.
    This 400,000 year old “baby” universe entered into a period of darkness. When the dark age of the universe began, the cosmos was a formless sea of particles. By the time the dark age ended, a couple of hundred million years later, the universe lit up again by the light of some of the galaxies and stars that had been formed during this dark era. It was during the dark age of the universe that the heavier chemical elements necessary for life, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen and most of the rest, were first forged, by nuclear fusion inside the stars, out of the universe’s primordial hydrogen and helium.
    It was also during this dark period of the universe the great structures of the modern universe were first forged. Super-clusters, of thousands of galaxies stretching across millions of light years, had their foundations laid in the dark age of the universe. During this time the infamous “missing dark matter”, was exerting more gravity in some areas than in other areas; drawing in hydrogen and helium gas, causing the formation of mega-stars. These mega-stars were massive, weighing in at 20 to more than 100 times the mass of the sun. The crushing pressure at their cores made them burn through their fuel in only a million years. It was here, in these short lived mega-stars under these crushing pressures, the chemical elements necessary for life were first forged out of the hydrogen and helium. The reason astronomers can’t see the light from these first mega-stars, during this dark era of the universe’s early history, is because the mega-stars were shrouded in thick clouds of hydrogen and helium gas. These thick clouds prevented the mega-stars from spreading their light through the cosmos as they forged the elements necessary for future life to exist on earth. After about 200 million years, the end of the dark age came to the cosmos. The universe was finally expansive enough to allow the dispersion of the thick hydrogen and helium “clouds”. With the continued expansion of the universe, the light, of normal stars and dwarf galaxies, was finally able to shine through the thick clouds of hydrogen and helium gas, bringing the dark age to a close. (How The Stars Were Born – Michael D. Lemonick)
    http://www.time.com/time/magaz.....-2,00.html

    Job 38:4-11
    “Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell me if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements? Surely you know! Or who stretched a line upon it? To what were its foundations fastened? Or who laid its cornerstone, When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy? Or who shut in the sea with doors, when it burst forth and issued from the womb; When I made the clouds its garment, and thick darkness its swaddling band; When I fixed my limit for it, and set bars and doors; When I said, ‘This far you may come but no farther, and here your proud waves must stop!”

    Hidden Treasures in the Book of Job – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7sl0Ln3Ptb8

    Music:

    Michael W. Smith – Agnus Dei
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HPBmFwBSGb0

  15. 15
    Querius says:

    Collin,

    Ansel Adams once stated that everything interesting happens at the edges. One of those edges in Biology is the platypus, a biological version of Frankenstein’s monster. Apparently, its genome is as much of a patchwork as its appearance.

    This discovery lends some credence to the idea of “bristle block” DNA, where instead of tiny changes over time, large chunks of DNA are somehow transferred between different organisms, perhaps through viruses.

    On the other hand, epigenetics pretty much throws a monkey wrench into all these theories.

  16. 16
    Collin says:

    Thanks Querius.

  17. 17
    Jerad says:

    High rates of convergent evolution are only “incredible” if we simply assume as an article of faith that there is no design, and that therefore there is nothing to research. It shall remain then, forever, incredible. No matter why the design exists.

    A price paid, shall we say, for dogmatism killing curiosity.

    Except it’s not an article of faith. Aside from all the evidence that can be explained by common descent with modification science prefers to NOT assume causes unless they’re necessary. And it has not been proven that an undefined and undetected designer whose abilities and time frame are not specified is necessary.

    And to claim at this point that Design is a better explanation than modern evolutionary theory because it has not been proven that evolutionary theory can ‘do the job’ is trying to prove a negative with an argument of incredulity.

    Also, it’s extremely disingenuous to say that there is no research going on regarding convergent evolution. It’s all very well and good to preach to the choir but that doesn’t excuse getting the message wrong.

    As far as dogma killing curiousity . . . which field is generating more research: ID or modern evolutionary theory?

  18. 18
    Mapou says:

    As far as dogma killing curiousity . . . which field is generating more research: ID or modern evolutionary theory?

    I don’t see modern evolutionary generating any research whatsoever. One does not need to know anything about modern evolutionary theory to figure out experimentally that certain bats and whales share many identical genetic code segments for echolocation.

    The fact is that design is not just the better explanation here but the only explanation. Modern evolutionary theory just bit the dust, hard. Genetic convergence just killed it.

  19. 19
    Jerad says:

    I don’t see modern evolutionary generating any research whatsoever.

    An argument from ignorance.

    One does not need to know anything about modern evolutionary theory to figure out experimentally that certain bats and whales share many identical genetic code segments for echolocation.

    That does not ‘prove’ design. Your argument is: I cannot see how different species can share genetic sequences without there being a master designer. That’s another argument from ignorance.

    The fact is that design is not just the better explanation here but the only explanation. Modern evolutionary theory just bit the dust, hard. Genetic convergence just killed it.

    Again, YOU can’t understand how natural processes can account for life as we know it, therefore, design.

    Design is NOT the better explanation because it hypothesises an unknown and undefined designer whose abilities and timeframe have not been specified. That’s not an explanation at all! That’s just wishful thinking.

    After 150 years of research evolution is the default explanation. We’ve found no hard evidence that disproves it. If you think you’ve got a ‘better’ explanation then you have to do more than just try and point out the gaps in evolutionary theory. You have to do more than just say: look there, you don’t know how this or that happened therefore design. You have to, at the very least, start being specific about what ID is saying. And if you need to do more research to be able to be more specific then do the research. Do some work. Prove your case. Find the evidence. Stop using arguments of ignorance to try and prove a negative and then jump to an assumption.

  20. 20
    lifepsy says:

    jerad,

    Except it’s not an article of faith. Aside from all the evidence that can be explained by common descent with modification science prefers to NOT assume causes unless they’re necessary.

    Of course it is faith. Evolutionists have constant and unceasing devotion to the belief that culled genetic accidents did everything. (insert after every facet of biology: “culled genetic accidents dunnit!”)

    Even when that belief is constantly challenged by the evidence, like it is from this latest discovery of ‘convergent’ genetic function.

    Jerad, what is scientifically necessary about having culled genetic accidents as a cause for all of biodiversity? Nothing. It is only necessary for evolutionists who need some kind of an origins/creation story.

    The idea that evolutionists are simply following the evidence or being the most parsimonious in their assumptions is absolutely laughable at this point.

  21. 21
    Jerad says:

    Of course it is faith. Evolutionists have constant and unceasing devotion to the belief that culled genetic accidents did everything. (insert after every facet of biology: “culled genetic accidents dunnit!”)

    You are entitled to your opinion of course. But remember that 200 years ago design was the default assumption. How do you explain that in the intervening time most biologists have come to accept evolution as a better explanation and model? Unfounded conspiracy theories aside.

    Even when that belief is constantly challenged by the evidence, like it is from this latest discovery of ‘convergent’ genetic function.

    I know you’re just looking for any evidence that you think undermines evolutionary theory. Have you actually tried to find out what real evolutionary biologists think of the latest convergent genetic data or are you just marching along to someone else’s tune?

    Jerad, what is scientifically necessary about having culled genetic accidents as a cause for all of biodiversity? Nothing. It is only necessary for evolutionists who need some kind of an origins/creation story.

    Sigh. I’m not quite sure what you’re arguing. Evolutionary theory says that when viable lifeforms reproduce there will be variation. Some of the variants will be non-viable, some will be pretty much the same as the ‘parents’ and some will be better able to exploit the resources in the environmental niche where they are. This will lead to differential reproductive rates amongst the off-spring. Variations that tend to get reproduced more will become more and more common.

    The idea that evolutionists are simply following the evidence or being the most parsimonious in their assumptions is absolutely laughable at this point.

    You might find the assumption in an undefined, unexplained and unspecified designer to be more parsimonious but I do not. And, there is no need to jump to that assumption. And it violates one of the cardinal rules of science: don’t make up new causes unless you’ve exhausted the existing possibilities.

    Throwing up your hands and saying: natural processes aren’t up to the job is premature. And an argument from ignorance.

    Propose an alternative that is specific including at least some whens and hows and do some work finding hard evidence to support it. I know you won’t do that because it violates the first rule of ID: don’t talk about what’s behind the big tent flap. Just get everyone inside first. What’s inside is a lot of people who do not agree what ID is really saying after accepting some kind of designer who did something sometime. ID isn’t even a real field of study yet let alone a scientific theory.

  22. 22
    lifepsy says:

    jerad,

    That does not ‘prove’ design. Your argument is: I cannot see how different species can share genetic sequences without there being a master designer. That’s another argument from ignorance.

    And your argument is that culled genetic accidents must have dunnit, which is ridiculous, empirically void, and nothing short of neo-darwinian mysticism.

    Design is NOT the better explanation because it hypothesises an unknown and undefined designer whose abilities and timeframe have not been specified. That’s not an explanation at all! That’s just wishful thinking.

    You heard it, folks. Better inform the entire world’s Archeology departments that they’ve been wasting their time for centuries and should close down shop. Their time would be better spent studying how erosion patterns created arrowheads and pottery.

    After 150 years of research evolution is the default explanation. We’ve found no hard evidence that disproves it.

    Well, you have no biological mechanism, no phylogenetic consistency, and no fossil evidence…. but you’re right, I guess the “Well you can’t prove it DIDN’T happen” angle is the best approach from here on for evolution.

  23. 23
    kairosfocus says:

    M & LT:

    That which, as to key attributes, is incoherent is an impossible being, like a square circle. We can make mouth noises about it, but it cannot be built, as the necessary factors to have circularity and squarishness cannot both be met. No such thing exists or can exist, it is literally an illustration of no-thing. To infer that omnipotence is flawed by demanding that it implies ability to do the logically incoherent is indeed a basic error.

    KF

  24. 24
    Jerad says:

    And your argument is that culled genetic accidents must have dunnit, which is ridiculous, empirically void, and nothing short of neo-darwinian mysticism.

    Your misunderstanding of evolutionary theory is not an argument.

    You heard it, folks. Better inform the entire world’s Archeology departments that they’ve been wasting their time for centuries and should close down shop. Their time would be better spent studying how erosion patterns created arrowheads and pottery.

    My spouse is an archaeologist and I’ve done some work as well. Pattern detection WHEN YOU KNOW there was an intelligent agent present at the time is a bit different from ASSUMING there was one. Find the evidence of your designer apart from the artefact in contention.

    Also, archaeologist spend a lot of time studying the hows and whys of the patterns they ‘detect’. Has ID done that? No. In fact, it avoids making statements or guesses about those issues.

    Well, you have no biological mechanism, no phylogenetic consistency, and no fossil evidence…. but you’re right, I guess the “Well you can’t prove it DIDN’T happen” angle is the best approach from here on for evolution.

    I see you’ve learned the marching orders: deny the genetic, fossil, bio-geographic diversity and morphological evidence. In fact, avoid discussing the bio-geographical diversity evidence. And don’t forget to twist the evidence from breeding programs that prove that there is enough molecular variation to build morphological differences upon.

    And, you’ve also done well not to address the fact that ID has no unifying concept. It does not specify anything about the hows or whens. There’s some magical designer which did whatever, whenever. Time to start addressing the whatever and whenever if you want to have an alternative theory. I’ve not heard one that was really spelled out or specified. Have you?

    How long can you continue to be a merchant of doubt? The gaps are shrinking . . .

  25. 25
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad (et al):

    In science, every tub must stand on its own observationally grounded bottom.

    We do have billions of observed cases of origin of functionally specific complex organisation and associated/implied information. In every one of these, the observed cause is design — as comments in this thread illustrate for coded strings. This is backed up by the challenge of searching astronomically large configuration spaces for components, with the unexpectedly sharp constraint of available resources on a solar system or observed cosmos basis. Thus once we see 500 – 1,000 bits of FSCO/I we are well beyond a scope where blind chance and/or mechanical necessity by whatever mechanisms, is remotely plausible.

    Here, too, we are addressing a remote past of origins we cannot observe directly. So, per Newton’s rules of scientific reasoning, we can only examine and compare traces from that past with circumstances in the present that show us factors capable of giving rise to the like. That means, BTW, that the all too common ideological (and historically/logically unwarranted) move of trying to redefine science on materialistic philosophy to exclude unwelcome possibilities such as design is a case of ideological distortion.

    All this brings us to the root of the tree of life, OOL.

    Including, origin of codes, algorithms, execution machines, a von Neumann kinematic self replicator manifesting more of these, implemented using C-chemistry molecular nanotech, in aqueous medium and manifesting metabolic and self replicating processes, etc. All, in a cosmos fine tuned in ways that make such life possible, from the basic physics of the cosmos on up.

    From the root of the tree of life, design sits at the table as of right on its merits. Save, where nasty power games artificially exclude it.

    The usual critics of design theory no longer seem willing to even try to provide a serious case on OOL in such a fine tuned cosmos. Sir Fred’s super-intellect monkeying with the very physics of the cosmos has won the day. Sometimes, the dog that refuses to bark speaks loudly indeed.

    And, when we move up to origin of body plans and key features, including our own with linguistic, cognitive and moral capacities, we see even higher FSCO/I thresholds, with no serious non-question begging evolutionary materialist explanation.

    The assumed default that unobserved capabilities of chance/non foresighted variation leading to differential reproductive success, thence incremental descent with unlimited variation — for all its institutional and ideological dominance in an age of lingering scientism — lacks empirical foundations.

    The situation where the pro-darwinism essay challenge issued to you Jerad and opened to all comers since Sep 23 2012 stands without serious and comprehensive summary answer a full year later less a fortnight or so, speaks volumes. (Remember, a successful essay would have been a knockout punch for UD.)

    Every tub must stand on its own bottom.

    KF

  26. 26
    bornagain77 says:

    jerad I find your ‘argument from ignorance’ and ‘merchant of doubt’ accusations particularly interesting for Darwinists are absolutely dependent on ignorance and doubt to try to make their pseudo-scientific theory seem plausible.

  27. 27
    lifepsy says:

    Jerad, what is scientifically necessary about having culled genetic accidents as a cause for all of biodiversity? Nothing. It is only necessary for evolutionists who need some kind of an origins/creation story.

    Jerad:

    Sigh. I’m not quite sure what you’re arguing. Evolutionary theory says that when viable lifeforms reproduce there will be variation. Some of the variants will be non-viable, some will be pretty much the same as the ‘parents’ and some will be better able to exploit the resources in the environmental niche where they are. This will lead to differential reproductive rates amongst the off-spring. Variations that tend to get reproduced more will become more and more common.

    Sigh… so what you’re saying is non-viable genetic-accident-variants will be culled from reproductive populations? Why did you “correct” me by saying the same thing?

    You might find the assumption in an undefined, unexplained and unspecified designer to be more parsimonious but I do not. And, there is no need to jump to that assumption.

    Huh? Who needs to assume anything to point out when an idea is really really bad? Doesn’t science progress by eliminating faulty hypotheses? Genetic accidents and natural selection obviously didn’t do this. Stop trying to mask your faith, Jerad.

    And it violates one of the cardinal rules of science: don’t make up new causes unless you’ve exhausted the existing possibilities.

    You can not scientifically exhaust a blind faith or a philosophical commitment, Jerad. No matter what we find, you’ll keep blindly asserting that genetic accidents and natural selection dunnit.

    Throwing up your hands and saying: natural processes aren’t up to the job is premature. And an argument from ignorance.

    It’s not premature or an argument from ignorance. Evolution has had decades to construct a working theory for the origin of biological complexity we see in nature. It has utterly failed. You can file it next to Abiogenesis.

    Throwing up your hands and blindly asserting that “genetic accidents and natural selection gone and dun everything, AND YOU CAN’T PROVE IT DIDN’T”, is only an argument from blind faith and unwavering devotion to neo-darwinian mysticism.

  28. 28
    Jerad says:

    In science, every tub must stand on its own observationally grounded bottom.

    Yup. Too bad ID stands on trying to prove a negative with an argument from ignorance.

    We do have billions of observed cases of origin of functionally specific complex organisation and associated/implied information. In every one of these, the observed cause is design — as comments in this thread illustrate for coded strings.

    I see lots of examples of human design in the last 40,000 years or so. How does that support the idea that some unspecified and undefined intelligent designer was around . . . when was it? And what did they do exactly?

    This is backed up by the challenge of searching astronomically large configuration spaces for components, with the unexpectedly sharp constraint of available resources on a solar system or observed cosmos basis. Thus once we see 500 – 1,000 bits of FSCO/I we are well beyond a scope where blind chance and/or mechanical necessity by whatever mechanisms, is remotely plausible.

    When I look for my keys I don’t keep looking after I’ve found them. You don’t search the entire space if you start with a viable configurations and make small modifications to it. The modifications that don’t work die and the ones that do work live on, reproduce, create more variations.

    Here, too, we are addressing a remote past of origins we cannot observe directly. So, per Newton’s rules of scientific reasoning, we can only examine and compare traces from that past with circumstances in the present that show us factors capable of giving rise to the like. That means, BTW, that the all too common ideological (and historically/logically unwarranted) move of trying to redefine science on materialistic philosophy to exclude unwelcome possibilities such as design is a case of ideological distortion.

    You can’t just assume a designer way back . . . when was it? Who did what?

    If you’re going to base your whole argument on the fact that humans have been observed to create complex patterns then what happened before there were humans?

    You refuse to address the hole in your argument: you don’t know there was a designer around at the time. Coupled with the fact that you haven’t proved that natural processes are not ‘up to the job’ your argument falls apart.

    But I know what you’ll do: you’ll just reassert your argument and claim I don’t understand and/or I’m being belligerent and poisoning the well of debate. Int the teeth of something warranted no doubt.

    Instead, why not provide some evidence that

    a) An exhaustive search through a vast configuration space is required

    and

    b) there was a designer around at . . . what time was it? And what did they do exactly?

    All this brings us to the root of the tree of life, OOL.

    Including, origin of codes, algorithms, execution machines, a von Neumann kinematic self replicator manifesting more of these, implemented using C-chemistry molecular nanotech, in aqueous medium and manifesting metabolic and self replicating processes, etc. All, in a cosmos fine tuned in ways that make such life possible, from the basic physics of the cosmos on up.

    Uh huh. What if life on earth was seeded via a worm hole from another dimension? Even I’d cry foul on that idea: it assumes things we don’t know. ID assumes a designer for which there is no independent (aside from the artefact in question) evidence.

    From the root of the tree of life, design sits at the table as of right on its merits. Save, where nasty power games artificially exclude it.

    Your conspiracty theories aside; 200 years ago design was the default, the assumption. Now it isn’t. What changed? Evidence. Data. A greater understanding of processes that operate on timescales beyond an individual’s ability to observe. ID attempts to brush all that under the carpet without proposing a grounded, evidence-based alternative.

    The usual critics of design theory no longer seem willing to even try to provide a serious case on OOL in such a fine tuned cosmos. Sir Fred’s super-intellect monkeying with the very physics of the cosmos has won the day. Sometimes, the dog that refuses to bark speaks loudly indeed.

    Lots and lots of serious, dedicated scientists are attempting to address the OoL question. To say other wise is dishonest. Sir Fred has NOT won the day as anyone who keeps up with the real research knows.

    And, when we move up to origin of body plans and key features, including our own with linguistic, cognitive and moral capacities, we see even higher FSCO/I thresholds, with no serious non-question begging evolutionary materialist explanation.

    You continually pretend that new body plans can only arise from improbable searches though vast configuration spaces. Even human design doesn’t work that way! A bridge designer doesn’t spend years and years testing all possible designs! They modify existing structures to meet their design, economic and time constraints.

    NO ONE, except you, thinks that there has to be an exhaustive search of protein configuration space. Start with a viable form and make small changes and see what works.

    The assumed default that unobserved capabilities of chance/non foresighted variation leading to differential reproductive success, thence incremental descent with unlimited variation — for all its institutional and ideological dominance in an age of lingering scientism — lacks empirical foundations.

    Your mis-representation of evolutionary theory is not an argument. AND you haven’t got a specified, detailed alternate explanation.

    The situation where the pro-darwinism essay challenge issued to you Jerad and opened to all comers since Sep 23 2012 stands without serious and comprehensive summary answer a full year later less a fortnight or so, speaks volumes. (Remember, a successful essay would have been a knockout punch for UD.)

    🙂 Your attempt to score points by picking off low hanging fruit (me) is amusing. I have explained my views here many, many times. You guessed, probably correctly, that my rhetorical skills would not be air-tight enough to produce an essay which would be beyond reproach or criticism.

    All the evidence for evolutionary theory cannot be summarised in one essay. There are books and books and books explaining what it is and what it means. Knocking over one person, me, means diddly-squat. Stop attacking strawman versions of evolutionary theory. Stop standing on the sidelines and jeering. Propose a viable hypothesis and go find evidence. Do some real, hard work.

    Every tub must stand on its own bottom.

    Let’s see . . . 150 years of research, evidence, new threads of evidence even . . . vs . . . arguments from ignorance trying to prove a negative? Really?

  29. 29
    lifepsy says:

    I see you’ve learned the marching orders: deny the genetic, fossil, bio-geographic diversity and morphological evidence.

    There is nothing to deny. Molecular Biology/Genetics stands in constant defiance of the religious conviction that they formed from evolutionary processes.

    And Jerad, do you understand that evolution proponents have had to come up with theories to explain why there is no fossil evidence ??? Does this not strike you as odd? Probably not, I’m sure you’ve buried that inconvenient fact under piles of flimsy and wishful rationalizations…

    And don’t forget to twist the evidence from breeding programs that prove that there is enough molecular variation to build morphological differences upon.

    And don’t forget to twist the evidence that none of these breeding programs ever result in a population with genetic information/function that was not already present in the wild type.

    If you don’t understand this you should research exactly what happened genetically with Lenski’s E.Coli and then ask yourself why it was championed as one of the best examples of evolution in action.

  30. 30
    Jerad says:

    Jerad, what is scientifically necessary about having culled genetic accidents as a cause for all of biodiversity? Nothing. It is only necessary for evolutionists who need some kind of an origins/creation story.

    Are you going to keep repeating the same thing over and over again? Again, your misinterpretation of evolutionary theory is not an argument.

    Sigh… so what you’re saying is non-viable genetic-accident-variants will be culled from reproductive populations? Why did you “correct” me by saying the same thing?

    I stand by what I said.

    Huh? Who needs to assume anything to point out when an idea is really really bad? Doesn’t science progress by eliminating faulty hypotheses? Genetic accidents and natural selection obviously didn’t do this. Stop trying to mask your faith, Jerad.

    Obviously eh? Trying to prove a negative with an argument from ignorance again? I’ve looked at the multiple threads of evidence. Can you explain the bio-geographic diversity with something other than: that’s what the designer did?

    Or, even better, what’s your detailed and explanatory ‘better’ idea? And don’t just wrap your faith up in a thin veneer. 🙂

    You can not scientifically exhaust a blind faith or a philosophical commitment, Jerad. No matter what we find, you’ll keep blindly asserting that genetic accidents and natural selection dunnit.

    It’s the most parsimonious explanation. A model that matches the data and explains the data. What have you got? A vague idea based on an argument from ignorance trying to prove a negative? Assuming an unspecified designer. Who did what? And when?

    It’s not premature or an argument from ignorance. Evolution has had decades to construct a working theory for the origin of biological complexity we see in nature. It has utterly failed. You can file it next to Abiogenesis.

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH Design ruled for THOUSANDS of years. And then it lost. 150 years of evolutionary theory and you throw in the towel. And ID is not a science stopper. It just assigns a best by date. hahahahahahahahah

    Throwing up your hands and blindly asserting that “genetic accidents and natural selection gone and dun everything, AND YOU CAN’T PROVE IT DIDN’T”, is only an argument from blind faith and unwavering devotion to neo-darwinian mysticism.

    Except it doesn’t just throw up its hands. You’ve swallowed the party line very well and I give you points for defending the line. But you haven’t spend decades looking at the evidence. ID hasn’t even tried to provide detailed and specific explanations for much of the data except to say: we can’t know the mind of the designer.

    Evolutionary theory will be modified in the future as it has in the past. It responds and reacts to new evidence and data. ID hasn’t even addressed some of the basic questions yet.

    Your argument against evolutionary theory is an argument from ignorance. Which you use to try and prove a negative: natural processes aren’t up to the job. And then you assume a cause/force for which there is no hard, independent evidence.

    I admire and respect people of faith. I really do. But don’t tell me it’s science. What use is faith that doesn’t match, that isn’t conversant with the evidence?

  31. 31
    Jerad says:

    There is nothing to deny. Molecular Biology/Genetics stands in constant defiance of the religious conviction that they formed from evolutionary processes.

    Too bad you have nothing except incredulity as an argument.

    And Jerad, do you understand that evolution proponents have had to come up with theories to explain why there is no fossil evidence ??? Does this not strike you as odd? Probably not, I’m sure you’ve buried that inconvenient fact under piles of flimsy and wishful rationalizations…

    If you think that every single step along the evolutionary trail should have formed a fossil then you really don’t understand the situation. There’s tons of fossil evidence. Group that with the genetic, morphological and bio-geographic evidence (which you steadfastly refuse to address, well done for holding the line) and. . . well . . . seems pretty solid to me.

    And don’t forget to twist the evidence that none of these breeding programs ever result in a population with genetic information/function that was not already present in the wild type.

    🙂 You’re sure about that? You’ve looked at the brassicas?

    If you don’t understand this you should research exactly what happened genetically with Lenski’s E.Coli and then ask yourself why it was championed as one of the best examples of evolution in action.

    I’ve have looked at it. And what I see is ID proponents continually trying to make a stand behind another proposed barricade for evolution. Oh look, we hadn’t observed this line being crossed so we ASSUME it can’t happen. You’ve guys have had your 150 years and you’ve failed so it’s back to design!!

    If you keep trying to live in the gaps you’re going to get squashed. ‘Cause they are shrinking . . .

    AND you still haven’t proposed any hard, independent evidence for the presence of a designer who . . . did what exactly? And when?

    NOR have you offered up for scrutiny a detailed and explanatory alternative.

    Well done for standing your ground. Better check to make sure it doesn’t crumble beneath you though. Have you got a retreat strategy?

  32. 32
    bornagain77 says:

    Jerad, neo-Darwinism has no rigid falsification criteria in mathematics so as to delineate it as a truly scientific theory and not a pseudo-science:

    “nobody to date has yet found a demarcation criterion according to which Darwin can be described as scientific”
    – Imre Lakatos (November 9, 1922 – February 2, 1974) a philosopher of mathematics and science, quote as stated in 1973 LSE Scientific Method Lecture

    Oxford University Seeks Mathemagician — May 5th, 2011 by Douglas Axe
    Excerpt: Grand theories in physics are usually expressed in mathematics. Newton’s mechanics and Einstein’s theory of special relativity are essentially equations. Words are needed only to interpret the terms. Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection has obstinately remained in words since 1859. …
    http://biologicinstitute.org/2.....emagician/

    “It is our contention that if ‘random’ is given a serious and crucial interpretation from a probabilistic point of view, the randomness postulate is highly implausible and that an adequate scientific theory of evolution must await the discovery and elucidation of new natural laws—physical, physico-chemical, and biological.”
    Murray Eden, “Inadequacies of Neo-Darwinian Evolution as a Scientific Theory,” Mathematical Challenges to the Neo-Darwinian Interpretation of Evolution, editors Paul S. Moorhead and Martin M. Kaplan, June 1967, p. 109.

    “On the other hand, I disagree that Darwin’s theory is as `solid as any explanation in science.; Disagree? I regard the claim as preposterous. Quantum electrodynamics is accurate to thirteen or so decimal places; so, too, general relativity. A leaf trembling in the wrong way would suffice to shatter either theory. What can Darwinian theory offer in comparison?”
    (Berlinski, D., “A Scientific Scandal?: David Berlinski & Critics,” Commentary, July 8, 2003)

    Macroevolution, microevolution and chemistry: the devil is in the details – Dr. V. J. Torley – February 27, 2013
    Excerpt: After all, mathematics, scientific laws and observed processes are supposed to form the basis of all scientific explanation. If none of these provides support for Darwinian macroevolution, then why on earth should we accept it? Indeed, why does macroevolution belong in the province of science at all, if its scientific basis cannot be demonstrated?
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....e-details/

    Whereas ID does not suffer such an embarrassment as to having no rigid falsification criteria within mathematics so as to delineate it as scientific:

    Evolutionary Informatics Lab – Main Publications
    http://evoinfo.org/publications/

    ,, the empirical falsification criteria of ID is much easier to understand than the math is, and is as such:

    “Orr maintains that the theory of intelligent design is not falsifiable. He’s wrong. To falsify design theory a scientist need only experimentally demonstrate that a bacterial flagellum, or any other comparably complex system, could arise by natural selection. If that happened I would conclude that neither flagella nor any system of similar or lesser complexity had to have been designed. In short, biochemical design would be neatly disproved.”
    – Dr Behe in 1997

    Michael Behe on Falsifying Intelligent Design – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N8jXXJN4o_A

    The Capabilities of Chaos and Complexity: David L. Abel – Null Hypothesis For Information Generation – 2009
    To focus the scientific community’s attention on its own tendencies toward overzealous metaphysical imagination bordering on “wish-fulfillment,” we propose the following readily falsifiable null hypothesis, and invite rigorous experimental attempts to falsify it: “Physicodynamics cannot spontaneously traverse The Cybernetic Cut: physicodynamics alone cannot organize itself into formally functional systems requiring algorithmic optimization, computational halting, and circuit integration.” A single exception of non trivial, unaided spontaneous optimization of formal function by truly natural process would falsify this null hypothesis.
    http://www.mdpi.com/1422-0067/10/1/247/pdf
    Can We Falsify Any Of The Following Null Hypothesis (For Information Generation)
    1) Mathematical Logic
    2) Algorithmic Optimization
    3) Cybernetic Programming
    4) Computational Halting
    5) Integrated Circuits
    6) Organization (e.g. homeostatic optimization far from equilibrium)
    7) Material Symbol Systems (e.g. genetics)
    8) Any Goal Oriented bona fide system
    9) Language
    10) Formal function of any kind
    11) Utilitarian work
    http://mdpi.com/1422-0067/10/1/247/ag

    Moreover, in the following video, all the foundational presuppositions in the modern synthesis of neo-Darwinism are now shown to be compromised,,,

    Modern Synthesis Of Neo-Darwinism Is False – Denis Nobel – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/w/10395212

    ,, Dr Nobel states that around 1900 there was the integration of Mendelian (discrete) inheritance with evolutionary theory, and about the same time Weismann established what was called the Weismann barrier, which is the idea that germ cells and their genetic materials are not in anyway influenced by the organism itself or by the environment. And then about 40 years later, circa 1940, a variety of people, Julian Huxley, R.A. Fisher, J.B.S. Haldane, and Sewell Wright, put things together to call it ‘The Modern Synthesis’. So what exactly is the ‘The Modern Synthesis’? It is sometimes called neo-Darwinism, and it was popularized in the book by Richard Dawkins, ‘The Selfish Gene’ in 1976. It’s main assumptions are, first of all, is that it is a gene centered view of natural selection. The process of evolution can therefore be characterized entirely by what is happening to the genome. It would be a process in which there would be accumulation of random mutations, followed by selection. (Now an important point to make here is that if that process is genuinely random, then there is nothing that physiology, or physiologists, can say about that process. That is a very important point.) The second aspect of neo-Darwinism was the impossibility of acquired characteristics (mis-called “Larmarckism”). And there is a very important distinction in Dawkins’ book ‘The Selfish Gene’ between the replicator, that is the genes, and the vehicle that carries the replicator, that is the organism or phenotype. And of course that idea was not only buttressed and supported by the Weissman barrier idea, but later on by the ‘Central Dogma’ of molecular biology. Then Dr. Nobel pauses to emphasize his point and states “All these rules have been broken!”.
    Professor Denis Noble is President of the International Union of Physiological Sciences.

    ,, you can pick up the rest of the talk at the two minute mark of the video I referenced, or you can watch the entire video here:

    Rocking the Foundations of Biology
    http://www.voicesfromoxford.or.....iology/184

    And in so far as mathematics can be rigorously applied to Darwinian claims through population genetics, The Darwinian mechanism is found to be effectively falsified:

    Using Numerical Simulation to Test the Validity of Neo-Darwinian Theory – 2008
    Abstract: Evolutionary genetic theory has a series of apparent “fatal flaws” which are well known to population geneticists, but which have not been effectively communicated to other scientists or the public. These fatal flaws have been recognized by leaders in the field for many decades—based upon logic and mathematical formulations. However population geneticists have generally been very reluctant to openly acknowledge these theoretical problems, and a cloud of confusion has come to surround each issue.
    Numerical simulation provides a definitive tool for empirically testing the reality of these fatal flaws and can resolve the confusion. The program Mendel’s Accountant (Mendel) was developed for this purpose, and it is the first biologically-realistic forward-time population genetics numerical simulation program. This new program is a powerful research and teaching tool. When any reasonable set of biological parameters are used, Mendel provides overwhelming empirical evidence that all of the “fatal flaws” inherent in evolutionary genetic theory are real. This leaves evolutionary genetic theory effectively falsified—with a degree of certainty which should satisfy any reasonable and open-minded person.
    http://www.icr.org/i/pdf/techn.....Theory.pdf

    This is not good for your position Jerad. You have no rigid falsification criteria, and in so far that math can be applied your atheistic position is ‘effectively falsified’.

  33. 33
    bornagain77 says:

    As if that was not devastating enough Jerad, ‘reductive materialism (which is the main philosophy underpinning the atheistic version of neo-Darwinism) is falsified by advances quantum mechanics’:

    The argument for God from consciousness can now be framed like this:

    1. Consciousness either preceded all of material reality or is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality.
    2. If consciousness is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality then consciousness will be found to have no special position within material reality. Whereas conversely, if consciousness precedes material reality then consciousness will be found to have a special position within material reality.
    3. Consciousness is found to have a special, even central, position within material reality.
    4. Therefore, consciousness is found to precede material reality.

    Four intersecting lines of experimental evidence from quantum mechanics that shows that consciousness precedes material reality (Wigner’s Quantum Symmetries, Wheeler’s Delayed Choice, Leggett’s Inequalities, Quantum Zeno effect):
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1G_Fi50ljF5w_XyJHfmSIZsOcPFhgoAZ3PRc_ktY8cFo/edit

    Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger by Richard Conn Henry – Physics Professor – John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the “illusion” of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism (solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one’s own mind is sure to exist). (Dr. Henry’s referenced experiment and paper – “An experimental test of non-local realism” by S. Gröblacher et. al., Nature 446, 871, April 2007 – “To be or not to be local” by Alain Aspect, Nature 446, 866, April 2007 (i.e. Leggett’s inequality)
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/aspect.html

    “I’m going to talk about the Bell inequality, and more importantly a new inequality that you might not have heard of called the Leggett inequality, that was recently measured. It was actually formulated almost 30 years ago by Professor Leggett, who is a Nobel Prize winner, but it wasn’t tested until about a year and a half ago (in 2007), when an article appeared in Nature, that the measurement was made by this prominent quantum group in Vienna led by Anton Zeilinger, which they measured the Leggett inequality, which actually goes a step deeper than the Bell inequality and rules out any possible interpretation other than consciousness creates reality when the measurement is made.” – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D., Calphysics Institute, is an astrophysicist and author of over 130 scientific publications.

    Preceding quote taken from this following video;

    Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness – A New Measurement – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D (Shortened version of entire video with notes in description of video)
    http://vimeo.com/37517080

    Moreover the Darwinian claim that ‘Randomness’ is this primary creative engine for all life on earth is directly in opposition to what the ‘random’ processes, (i.e. entropic processes of the universe), are found to be doing. Random entropic processes are vastly more likely to destroy functional information within the cell rather than ever building it up’. Here are a few notes highlighting that now established fact:

    Shining Light on Dark Energy – October 21, 2012
    Excerpt: It (Entropy) explains time; it explains every possible action in the universe;,,
    Even gravity, Vedral argued, can be expressed as a consequence of the law of entropy. ,,,
    The principles of thermodynamics are at their roots all to do with information theory. Information theory is simply an embodiment of how we interact with the universe —,,,
    http://crev.info/2012/10/shini.....rk-energy/

    “Is there a real connection between entropy in physics and the entropy of information? …. The equations of information theory and the second law are the same, suggesting that the idea of entropy is something fundamental…”
    Tom Siegfried, Dallas Morning News, 5/14/90 – Quotes attributed to Robert W. Lucky, Ex. Director of Research, AT&T, Bell Laboratories & John A. Wheeler, of Princeton & Univ. of TX, Austin in the article

    Demonic device converts information to energy – 2010
    Excerpt: “This is a beautiful experimental demonstration that information has a thermodynamic content,” says Christopher Jarzynski, a statistical chemist at the University of Maryland in College Park. In 1997, Jarzynski formulated an equation to define the amount of energy that could theoretically be converted from a unit of information2; the work by Sano and his team has now confirmed this equation. “This tells us something new about how the laws of thermodynamics work on the microscopic scale,” says Jarzynski.
    http://www.scientificamerican......rts-inform

    ,,having a empirically demonstrated direct connection between entropy and the information inherent within a cell is extremely problematic for Darwinists because of the following,,,

    “Gain in entropy always means loss of information, and nothing more.”
    Gilbert Newton Lewis – preeminent Chemist of the first half of last century

    “Bertalanffy (1968) called the relation between irreversible thermodynamics and information theory one of the most fundamental unsolved problems in biology.”
    Charles J. Smith – Biosystems, Vol.1, p259.

    “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain – Michael Behe – December 2010
    Excerpt: In its most recent issue The Quarterly Review of Biology has published a review by myself of laboratory evolution experiments of microbes going back four decades.,,, The gist of the paper is that so far the overwhelming number of adaptive (that is, helpful) mutations seen in laboratory evolution experiments are either loss or modification of function. Of course we had already known that the great majority of mutations that have a visible effect on an organism are deleterious. Now, surprisingly, it seems that even the great majority of helpful mutations degrade the genome to a greater or lesser extent.,,, I dub it “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.
    http://behe.uncommondescent.co.....evolution/

    Thus, Darwinists are found to be postulating that entropic events, which consistently destroy information, are what are creating information in the cell. ,,, It is the equivalent in science of someone (in this case a ‘consensus of scientists’) claiming that Gravity makes things fall up instead of down, and that is not overstating the bizarre situation we find ourselves in in the least.

    Moreover Jerad, ‘Natural selection is ‘empty’, and to the extent that natural selection does do anything, it is found that Natural Selection reduces genetic information in an organism rather than ever creating it from scratch.’

    Natural Selection Is Empty – Michael Egnor – August 30, 2013
    Excerpt: “What’s essential about adaptationism, as viewed from this perspective, is precisely its claim that there is a level of evolutionary explanation. We think this claim is just plain wrong. We think that successful explanations of the fixation of phenotypic traits by ecological variables typically belong not to evolutionary theory but to natural history, and that there is just no end of the sorts of things about a natural history that can contribute to explaining the fixation of some or other feature of a creature’s phenotype. Natural history isn’t a theory of evolution; it’s a bundle of evolutionary scenarios. That’s why the explanations it offers are so often post hoc and unsystematic.” –
    Natural selection is not a level of explanation. In F&P-P’s cogent phrase, natural selection is empty. –
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....75991.html

    Can Purifying Natural Selection Preserve Biological Information? – published online May 2013 –
    Paul Gibson, John R. Baumgardner, Wesley H. Brewer, John C. Sanford
    http://www.worldscientific.com.....08728_0010

    Natural Selection Reduces Genetic Information – No Beneficial Mutations – Lee Spetner – Michael Denton – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4036816

    “…but Natural Selection reduces genetic information and we know this from all the Genetic Population studies that we have…”
    Maciej Marian Giertych – Population Geneticist – member of the European Parliament – EXPELLED
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4036840

  34. 34
    bornagain77 says:

    As if that was not devastating enough Jerad, ‘reductive materialism (which is the main philosophy underpinning the atheistic version of neo-Darwinism) is falsified by advances quantum mechanics’:

    The argument for God from consciousness can now be framed like this:

    1. Consciousness either preceded all of material reality or is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality.
    2. If consciousness is a ‘epi-phenomena’ of material reality then consciousness will be found to have no special position within material reality. Whereas conversely, if consciousness precedes material reality then consciousness will be found to have a special position within material reality.
    3. Consciousness is found to have a special, even central, position within material reality.
    4. Therefore, consciousness is found to precede material reality.

    Four intersecting lines of experimental evidence from quantum mechanics that shows that consciousness precedes material reality (Wigner’s Quantum Symmetries, Wheeler’s Delayed Choice, Leggett’s Inequalities, Quantum Zeno effect):
    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1G_Fi50ljF5w_XyJHfmSIZsOcPFhgoAZ3PRc_ktY8cFo/edit

    Alain Aspect and Anton Zeilinger by Richard Conn Henry – Physics Professor – John Hopkins University
    Excerpt: Why do people cling with such ferocity to belief in a mind-independent reality? It is surely because if there is no such reality, then ultimately (as far as we can know) mind alone exists. And if mind is not a product of real matter, but rather is the creator of the “illusion” of material reality (which has, in fact, despite the materialists, been known to be the case, since the discovery of quantum mechanics in 1925), then a theistic view of our existence becomes the only rational alternative to solipsism (solipsism is the philosophical idea that only one’s own mind is sure to exist). (Dr. Henry’s referenced experiment and paper – “An experimental test of non-local realism” by S. Gröblacher et. al., Nature 446, 871, April 2007 – “To be or not to be local” by Alain Aspect, Nature 446, 866, April 2007 (i.e. Leggett’s inequality)
    http://henry.pha.jhu.edu/aspect.html

    “I’m going to talk about the Bell inequality, and more importantly a new inequality that you might not have heard of called the Leggett inequality, that was recently measured. It was actually formulated almost 30 years ago by Professor Leggett, who is a Nobel Prize winner, but it wasn’t tested until about a year and a half ago (in 2007), when an article appeared in Nature, that the measurement was made by this prominent quantum group in Vienna led by Anton Zeilinger, which they measured the Leggett inequality, which actually goes a step deeper than the Bell inequality and rules out any possible interpretation other than consciousness creates reality when the measurement is made.” – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D., Calphysics Institute, is an astrophysicist and author of over 130 scientific publications.

    Preceding quote taken from this following video;

    Quantum Mechanics and Consciousness – A New Measurement – Bernard Haisch, Ph.D (Shortened version of entire video with notes in description of video)
    http://vimeo.com/37517080

    Moreover the Darwinian claim that ‘Randomness’ is this primary creative engine for all life on earth is directly in opposition to what the ‘random’ processes, (i.e. entropic processes of the universe), are found to be doing. Random entropic processes are vastly more likely to destroy functional information within the cell rather than ever building it up’. Here are a few notes highlighting that now established fact:

    Shining Light on Dark Energy – October 21, 2012
    Excerpt: It (Entropy) explains time; it explains every possible action in the universe;,,
    Even gravity, Vedral argued, can be expressed as a consequence of the law of entropy. ,,,
    The principles of thermodynamics are at their roots all to do with information theory. Information theory is simply an embodiment of how we interact with the universe —,,,
    http://crev.info/2012/10/shini.....rk-energy/

    “Is there a real connection between entropy in physics and the entropy of information? …. The equations of information theory and the second law are the same, suggesting that the idea of entropy is something fundamental…”
    Tom Siegfried, Dallas Morning News, 5/14/90 – Quotes attributed to Robert W. Lucky, Ex. Director of Research, AT&T, Bell Laboratories & John A. Wheeler, of Princeton & Univ. of TX, Austin in the article

    Demonic device converts information to energy – 2010
    Excerpt: “This is a beautiful experimental demonstration that information has a thermodynamic content,” says Christopher Jarzynski, a statistical chemist at the University of Maryland in College Park. In 1997, Jarzynski formulated an equation to define the amount of energy that could theoretically be converted from a unit of information2; the work by Sano and his team has now confirmed this equation. “This tells us something new about how the laws of thermodynamics work on the microscopic scale,” says Jarzynski.
    http://www.scientificamerican......rts-inform

    ,,having a empirically demonstrated direct connection between entropy and the information inherent within a cell is extremely problematic for Darwinists because of the following,,,

    “Gain in entropy always means loss of information, and nothing more.”
    Gilbert Newton Lewis – preeminent Chemist of the first half of last century

    “Bertalanffy (1968) called the relation between irreversible thermodynamics and information theory one of the most fundamental unsolved problems in biology.”
    Charles J. Smith – Biosystems, Vol.1, p259.

    “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain – Michael Behe – December 2010
    Excerpt: In its most recent issue The Quarterly Review of Biology has published a review by myself of laboratory evolution experiments of microbes going back four decades.,,, The gist of the paper is that so far the overwhelming number of adaptive (that is, helpful) mutations seen in laboratory evolution experiments are either loss or modification of function. Of course we had already known that the great majority of mutations that have a visible effect on an organism are deleterious. Now, surprisingly, it seems that even the great majority of helpful mutations degrade the genome to a greater or lesser extent.,,, I dub it “The First Rule of Adaptive Evolution”: Break or blunt any functional coded element whose loss would yield a net fitness gain.
    http://behe.uncommondescent.co.....evolution/

    Thus, Darwinists are found to be postulating that entropic events, which consistently destroy information, are what are creating information in the cell. ,,, It is the equivalent in science of someone (in this case a ‘consensus of scientists’) claiming that Gravity makes things fall up instead of down, and that is not overstating the bizarre situation we find ourselves in in the least.

  35. 35
    bornagain77 says:

    Moreover Jerad, ‘Natural selection is ‘empty’, and to the extent that natural selection does do anything, it is found that Natural Selection reduces genetic information in an organism rather than ever creating it from scratch.’

    Natural Selection Is Empty – Michael Egnor – August 30, 2013
    Excerpt: “What’s essential about adaptationism, as viewed from this perspective, is precisely its claim that there is a level of evolutionary explanation. We think this claim is just plain wrong. We think that successful explanations of the fixation of phenotypic traits by ecological variables typically belong not to evolutionary theory but to natural history, and that there is just no end of the sorts of things about a natural history that can contribute to explaining the fixation of some or other feature of a creature’s phenotype. Natural history isn’t a theory of evolution; it’s a bundle of evolutionary scenarios. That’s why the explanations it offers are so often post hoc and unsystematic.” –
    Natural selection is not a level of explanation. In F&P-P’s cogent phrase, natural selection is empty. –
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....75991.html

    Can Purifying Natural Selection Preserve Biological Information? – published online May 2013 –
    Paul Gibson, John R. Baumgardner, Wesley H. Brewer, John C. Sanford
    http://www.worldscientific.com.....08728_0010

    Natural Selection Reduces Genetic Information – No Beneficial Mutations – Lee Spetner – Michael Denton – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4036816

    “…but Natural Selection reduces genetic information and we know this from all the Genetic Population studies that we have…”
    Maciej Marian Giertych – Population Geneticist – member of the European Parliament – EXPELLED
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/4036840

    As well Jerad, the atheistic/naturalistic form of neo-Darwinism, if true, would result in the epistemological failure of science itself.

    “One absolutely central inconsistency ruins [the popular scientific philosophy]. The whole picture professes to depend on inferences from observed facts. Unless inference is valid, the whole picture disappears… unless Reason is an absolute, all is in ruins. Yet those who ask me to believe this world picture also ask me to believe that Reason is simply the unforeseen and unintended by-product of mindless matter at one stage of its endless and aimless becoming. Here is flat contradiction. They ask me at the same moment to accept a conclusion and to discredit the only testimony on which that conclusion can be based.”
    —C.S. Lewis, Is Theology Poetry (aka the Argument from Reason)

    Last Seminary – The Argument From Reason – resource page
    http://www.lastseminary.com/argument-from-reason/

    “It seems to me immensely unlikely that mind is a mere by-product of matter. For if my mental processes are determined wholly by the motions of atoms in my brain, I have no reason to suppose that my beliefs are true. They may be sound chemically, but that does not make them sound logically. And hence I have no reason for supposing my brain to be composed of atoms. In order to escape from this necessity of sawing away the branch on which I am sitting, so to speak, I am compelled to believe that mind is not wholly conditioned by matter”.
    J. B. S. Haldane [“When I am dead,” in Possible Worlds: And Other Essays [1927], Chatto and Windus: London, 1932, reprint, p.209.

    Alvin Plantinga – Evolutionary Argument against Naturalism – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r34AIo-xBh8

    “Modern science was conceived, and born, and flourished in the matrix of Christian theism. Only liberal doses of self-deception and double-think, I believe, will permit it to flourish in the context of Darwinian naturalism.”
    ~ Alvin Plantinga

    Thus Jerad, the naturalistic form of neo-Darwinism is found to be a truly laughable ‘scientific’ theory. That such a pathetic ‘scientific’ theory could gain such prominence in America is truly a sad state of affairs. Especially in a country that was first to develop the atomic bomb and land a man on the moon. (With the help of foreign scientists who immigrated here)

    Verse and Music:

    Proverbs 21:30
    There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan that can succeed against the LORD.

    Phillips, Craig & Dean – Great I Am – music
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zSoz6L1vqm8

  36. 36
    Jerad says:

    Jerad, neo-Darwinism has no rigid falsification criteria in mathematics so as to delineate it as a truly scientific theory and not a pseudo-science:

    This, of course, is quite false as has been pointed out many times over decades.

    Whereas ID does not suffer such an embarrassment as to having no rigid falsification criteria within mathematics so as to delineate it as scientific:

    Really? How do you refute: that’s the way the designer wanted to do it?

    Will someone from the ID community PLEASE get specific about what ID is saying? You’ve got this ghost idea which kind of lingers just beyond grasp. Which, unfortunately, means it says very little. No specifics, no explanations.

    And in so far as mathematics can be rigorously applied to Darwinian claims through population genetics, The Darwinian mechanism is found to be effectively falsified:

    Uh huh. Maybe you just don’t really understand the biology or the mathematics?

    As if that was not devastating enough Jerad, ‘reductive materialism (which is the main philosophy underpinning the atheistic version of neo-Darwinism) is falsified by advances quantum mechanics’:

    You sound like one of those new-age gurus who think that indeterminacy justifies their position. Very funny.

    Moreover the Darwinian claim that ‘Randomness’ is this primary creative engine for all life on earth is directly in opposition to what the ‘random’ processes, (i.e. entropic processes of the universe), are found to be doing. Random entropic processes are vastly more likely to destroy functional information within the cell rather than ever building it up’. Here are a few notes highlighting that now established fact:

    Maybe that’s why up a third of human pregnancies end in spontaneous abortions?

    Anyway, you should focus on viable variation and not information. If you’re going to argue against evolutionary theory then pick the right topic.

    Thus, Darwinists are found to be postulating that entropic events, which consistently destroy information, are what are creating information in the cell. ,,, It is the equivalent in science of someone (in this case a ‘consensus of scientists’) claiming that Gravity makes things fall up instead of down, and that is not overstating the bizarre situation we find ourselves in in the least.

    Uh huh. What do you actually do for a living? It certainly isn’t anything to do with physics. Or mathematics.

    I tell you what, why don’t you

    a) find some hard, independent evidence for a designer

    b) try and present a cogent, explanatory theory of ID

    c) find something other than an argument from ignorance to try and prove the negative that natural processes can’t do the job.

    Don’t forget to address all the genetic, bio-geographic distribution, morphological and fossil evidence. How long do you need before we give up and say ID can’t do the job? 10 years? Oh wait, it’s already been that long. 20 years? 30? Whatever, I think you’d better get started. It’ll be hard with so few people even attempting to do any ID research but that’s your problem.

  37. 37
    Jerad says:

    Thus Jerad, the naturalistic form of neo-Darwinism is found to be a truly laughable ‘scientific’ theory. That such a pathetic ‘scientific’ theory could gain such prominence in America is truly a sad state of affairs. Especially in a country that was first to develop the atomic bomb and land a man on the moon. (With the help of foreign scientists who immigrated here)

    Maybe you should look at the countries those ‘foreign’ scientists came from and see whether ID is considered to be a viable alternative to evolutionary theory in those places. Have you done so? Do you know that your merchant of doubt stance is considered to be laughable and weird over most of Europe? Even my UK Christian friends think you’re misguided. Including the Archbishop of Canterbury. But then I suppose he’s just another materialist pawn.

  38. 38
    bornagain77 says:

    Jerad, tell you what, since you are so confident that neo-Darwinism is as well established as a scientific theory as gravity, why don’t you go ahead and take Dr. Tour on his offer for a free lunch:

    Dr. James Tour, who builds (i.e. Intelligently Designs) the most sophisticated man-made molecular machines in the world,,,

    Science & Faith — Dr. James Tour – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdU5ojTpyzg

    ,,will buy lunch for anyone who can explain to him exactly how Darwinian evolution works:

    “I build molecules for a living, I can’t begin to tell you how difficult that job is. I stand in awe of God because of what he has done through his creation. Only a rookie who knows nothing about science would say science takes away from faith. If you really study science, it will bring you closer to God.”
    James Tour – one of the leading nano-tech engineers in the world – Strobel, Lee (2000), The Case For Faith, p. 111

    Top Ten Most Cited Chemist in the World Knows That Evolution Doesn’t Work – James Tour, Phd. – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCyAOCesHv0

    Jerad, something tells me that you would rather starve to death than ever admit that neo-Darwinism is bankrupt as a ‘scientific’ theory!

    supplemental note

    Engineering at Its Finest: Bacterial Chemotaxis and Signal Transduction – JonathanM – September 2011
    Excerpt: The bacterial flagellum represents not just a problem of irreducible complexity. Rather, the problem extends far deeper than that. What we are now observing is the existence of irreducibly complex systems within irreducibly complex systems. How random mutations, coupled with natural selection, could have assembled such a finely set-up system is a question to which I defy any Darwinist to give a sensible answer (much less an actual demonstration).
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....50911.html

    Biologist Howard Berg at Harvard calls the Bacterial Flagellum

    “the most efficient machine in the universe.”

    Bacterial Flagellum – A Sheer Wonder Of Intelligent Design – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/3994630

    Souped-Up Hyper-Drive Flagellum Discovered – December 3, 2012
    Excerpt: Get a load of this — a bacterium that packs a gear-driven, seven-engine, magnetic-guided flagellar bundle that gets 0 to 300 micrometers in one second, ten times faster than E. coli.
    If you thought the standard bacterial flagellum made the case for intelligent design, wait till you hear the specs on MO-1,,,
    Harvard’s mastermind of flagellum reverse engineering, this paper describes the Ferrari of flagella.
    “Instead of being a simple helically wound propeller driven by a rotary motor, it is a complex organelle consisting of 7 flagella and 24 fibrils that form a tight bundle enveloped by a glycoprotein sheath…. the flagella of MO-1 must rotate individually, and yet the entire bundle functions as a unit to comprise a motility organelle.”
    To feel the Wow! factor, jump ahead to Figure 6 in the paper. It shows seven engines in one, arranged in a hexagonal array, stylized by the authors in a cross-sectional model that shows them all as gears interacting with 24 smaller gears between them. The flagella rotate one way, and the smaller gears rotate the opposite way to maximize torque while minimizing friction. Download the movie from the Supplemental Information page to see the gears in action.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....66921.html

  39. 39
    Jerad says:

    Jerad, tell you what, since you are so confident that neo-Darwinism is as well established as a scientific theory as gravity, why don’t you go ahead and take Dr. Tour on his offer for a free lunch:

    I live in the UK, I can’t afford to go. And besides, he should be challenging evolutionary biologists.

    Jerad, something tells me that you would rather starve to death than ever admit that neo-Darwinism is bankrupt as a ‘scientific’ theory!

    Have you found the killer counter-example yet? A rabbit in the Cambrian say? Something that really is irreducibly complex? Are you looking or just collecting links to things you think support your view?

    Have you come up with a coherent, explanatory alternative? Seriously, what is ID saying? How is it better than evolutionary theory when it can’t/won’t address when and how?

    Have you found unambiguous and independent evidence of a designer yet? ‘Cause if there wasn’t one around . . . when was it again? . . . who did . . . what was it again? . . . then I guess it’s back to natural processes eh? Since you seem to think it’s a one or the other situation.

    Found some other argument other than: we haven’t be able to figure out how natural processes did it in the last 150 years therefore ID? How long should we give ID to come up with the goods? 10 years? Ooops, passed that mark already. 20 years? I mean you;ve had tens of thousands of years already.

    You keep trying to make me look a fool but you’ve done very little to strengthen your own position. No theory. No independent evidence. No argument. Better get working then.

  40. 40
    lifepsy says:

    If you keep trying to live in the gaps you’re going to get squashed. ‘Cause they are shrinking . . .

    Haha, yes.. you can tell the “gaps are shrinking” because the evolutionary model that has been preached as a fact for half a century is crashing and burning.

    And convergent genetics.. exactly what neo-darwinism predicted! lol

    Evolutionary theory will be modified in the future as it has in the past. It responds and reacts to new evidence and data.

    LOL, you can say that again.

  41. 41
    lifepsy says:

    Jerad,

    Have you found the killer counter-example yet? A rabbit in the Cambrian say?

    Jerad, just to let you know, the bottoms of oceans (as represented by the Cambrian biota) are typically hostile environments towards rabbits.

    Thanks for another reminder of how Evolution has no genuine falsifiability criteria, though.

  42. 42
    Jerad says:

    Haha, yes.. you can tell the “gaps are shrinking” because the evolutionary model that has been preached as a fact for half a century is crashing and burning.

    Funny, people have been saying that for a long time.

    And convergent genetics.. exactly what neo-darwinism predicted! lol

    Are you sure it wasn’t predicted? How much evolutionary research have you read? Are you sure ID proponents predicted it? I hear them talking about designers reusing parts but, strangely enough, they’re never terribly specific. They seem to avoid sticking their necks out too far actually. Except Dr Behe. I do respect him and his convictions.

    Jerad, just to let you know, the bottoms of oceans (as represented by the Cambrian biota) are typically hostile environments towards rabbits.

    Or something similar? I guess that’s a no then.

    Thanks for another reminder of how Evolution has no genuine falsifiability criteria, though.

    My pleasure. I see you haven’t even addressed some of the points I brought up. Sad. Does that mean you can’t:

    a) provide clear and independent evidence of a designer who did . . . something . . . sometime. No one knows for sure.

    b) present a clear and coherent of ID theory that has explanatory power and is specific about what was designed and when?

    c) give a an anti-evolution argument that doesn’t boil down to: After 150 years of research we still don’t know how some of the gaps are filled therefore design is a better argument?

    You do understand that even if you tear down evolutionary theory you still have to establish that design theory is viable, predictive and explains all the evidence? Maybe you should work on that. ‘Cause sitting around here thinking you’re scoring big points by trying to bait me and avoid the issues I bring up isn’t getting ID very far. Is it? You can’t all just march behind Drs Meyer and Behe and Dembski forever. Especially when they keep saying the same things over and over again and still don’t get any traction in the scientific world. Oh there is that materialist conspiracy, I forgot about that. Yeah there’s some secret cabal of ID hating atheists who are calling the tunes, pulling the strings. Whose life work is to make sure that theism is defeated. Oh well, might as well give up then. The evo-zombies are too powerful and too strong. If you could just find some evidence . . . and a theory . . . . even a good argument . . . .

  43. 43
    Jerad says:

    By the way, the evidence of convergent and parallel evolution at the amino acid sequence level has been around for over 15 years:

    http://www.kumarlab.net/pdf_new/ZhangKumar97.pdf

    If it’s the death blow to evolutionary theory it looks to be a very, very slow death.

  44. 44
    Joe says:

    Jerad, Please link to this alleged evolutionary “theory”- or just admit that it doesn’t exist.

  45. 45
    Joe says:

    a) provide clear and independent evidence of natural selection actually doing something

    b) present a clear and coherent of evolutionary theory that has explanatory power and is specific about what was evolved, how, and when?

    c) Tell us how many mutations it takes to get a chordate from a population of non-chordates

    Ya see Jerad, if you had something, anything at all, then ID would be a non-starter.

  46. 46
    Joe says:

    OK so the evidence says that convergent evolution can explain similarities down to the genetic level. That means common descent is not the only explanation for those similarities.

  47. 47
    bornagain77 says:

    jerad, since you are not really listening to anything anyone has to say, I figure I might as well go ahead and reflect on a few thoughts I’ve had this morning. jerad exactly how is absolute truth grounded within the randomness/chaos of your atheistic naturalism?

    Comprehensibility of the world – April 4, 2013
    Excerpt:,,,Bottom line: without an absolute Truth, (there would be) no logic, no mathematics, no beings, no knowledge by beings, no science, no comprehensibility of the world whatsoever.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....the-world/

    Pastor Joe Boot states the insurmountable problem for atheists this way,,

    “If you have no God, then you have no design plan for the universe. You have no prexisting structure to the universe.,, As the ancient Greeks held, like Democritus and others, the universe is flux. It’s just matter in motion. Now on that basis all you are confronted with is innumerable brute facts that are unrelated pieces of data. They have no meaningful connection to each other because there is no overall structure. There’s no design plan. It’s like my kids do ‘join the dots’ puzzles. It’s just dots, but when you join the dots there is a structure, and a picture emerges. Well, the atheists is without that (final picture). There is no preestablished pattern (to connect the facts given atheism).”
    Pastor Joe Boot as stated round the 13:20 minute mark of the following video:
    Defending the Christian Faith – Pastor Joe Boot – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqE5_ZOAnKo

    And indeed why should we even think there should be an overarching absolute truth, i.e. an overarching ‘theory of everything’ that unifies all these seemingly different facts into a coherent whole if randomness and chaos were truly the cause for all the order we see around us?

    “So you think of physics in search of a “Grand Unified Theory of Everything”, Why should we even think there is such a thing? Why should we think there is some ultimate level of resolution? Right? It is part, it is a consequence of believing in some kind of design. Right? And there is some sense in which that however mulrifarious and diverse the phenomena of nature are, they are ultimately unified by the minimal set of laws and principles possible. In so far as science continues to operate with that assumption, there is a presupposition of design that is motivating the scientific process. Because it would be perfectly easy,, to stop the pursuit of science at much lower levels. You know understand a certain range of phenomena in a way that is appropiate to deal with that phenomena and just stop there and not go any deeper or any farther.”,,, You see, there is sense in which there is design at the ultimate level, the ultimate teleology you might say, which provides the ultimate closure,,”
    Professor Steve Fuller, quote as stated at 17:34 minute mark of the following video,
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....nd-others/

    Moreover, that ultimate theory of everything, i.e. that absolute truth that people, even atheists, intuitively know must exist,,,

    Design Thinking Is Hardwired in the Human Brain. How Come? – October 17, 2012
    Excerpt: “Even Professional Scientists Are Compelled to See Purpose in Nature, Psychologists Find.” The article describes a test by Boston University’s psychology department, in which researchers found that “despite years of scientific training, even professional chemists, geologists, and physicists from major universities such as Harvard, MIT, and Yale cannot escape a deep-seated belief that natural phenomena exist for a purpose” ,,,
    Most interesting, though, are the questions begged by this research. One is whether it is even possible to purge teleology from explanation.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....65381.html

    ,,,according to Godel’s incompleteness theorem, cannot be a purely mathematical theory of everything, i.e. a purely mathematical absolute truth. This is a fact that even Hawking himself has admitted to (but has apparently subsequently forgotten).

    The nature and significance of Gödel’s incompleteness theorems – Princeton – 2006
    Excerpt: ,,Stephen Hawking and Freeman Dyson, among others, have come to the conclusion that Gödel’s theorem implies that there can’t be a Theory of Everything.,,
    http://math.stanford.edu/~fefe.....el-IAS.pdf

    Kurt Gödel – Incompleteness Theorem – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/w/8462821

    Alan Turing and Kurt Godel – Incompleteness Theorem and Human Intuition – video (notes in video description)
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/8516356/

    i.e. If there is to be a ‘theory of everything’, an absolute truth, that unifies all the different facts about the universe into a coherent whole, then it must be based in a ‘personal agent’, i.e. on God. The following quote from Dr. Gordon conveys this fact in a very concise fashion:

    BRUCE GORDON: Hawking’s irrational arguments – October 2010
    Excerpt: Rather, the transcendent reality on which our universe depends must be something that can exhibit agency – a mind that can choose among the infinite variety of mathematical descriptions and bring into existence a reality that corresponds to a consistent subset of them. This is what “breathes fire into the equations and makes a universe for them to describe.” Anything else invokes random miracles as an explanatory principle and spells the end of scientific rationality.,,,
    Universes do not “spontaneously create” on the basis of abstract mathematical descriptions, nor does the fantasy of a limitless multiverse trump the explanatory power of transcendent intelligent design. What Mr. Hawking’s contrary assertions show is that mathematical savants can sometimes be metaphysical simpletons. Caveat emptor.
    http://www.washingtontimes.com.....arguments/

  48. 48
    bornagain77 says:

    An interesting sidelight to the incompleteness theorem and God having to ‘breathe fire into the equations’, it is interesting to note that our two best mathematical descriptions of reality require higher dimensional mathematics. Thus strongly suggesting that whatever is ‘breathing fire into the equations’ resides in a higher dimension:

    The Mathematics Of Higher Dimensionality – Gauss and Riemann – video
    http://www.metacafe.com/watch/6199520/

    The Unreasonable Effectiveness of Mathematics in the Natural Sciences – Eugene Wigner – 1960
    Excerpt: We now have, in physics, two theories of great power and interest: the theory of quantum phenomena and the theory of relativity.,,, The two theories operate with different mathematical concepts: the four dimensional Riemann space and the infinite dimensional Hilbert space,
    http://www.dartmouth.edu/~matc.....igner.html

    Moreover, if we allow that God ‘can play the role of a person’ as even Godel himself allowed,,,

    The God of the Mathematicians – Goldman
    Excerpt: As Gödel told Hao Wang, “Einstein’s religion [was] more abstract, like Spinoza and Indian philosophy. Spinoza’s god is less than a person; mine is more than a person; because God can play the role of a person.” – Kurt Gödel – (Gödel is considered one of the greatest logicians who ever existed)
    http://www.firstthings.com/art.....ematicians

    ,,then we find a very credible reconciliation between General Relativity and Quantum Mechanics into a ‘theory of everything’, i.e. into an ‘absolute truth’,,

    General Relativity, Quantum Mechanics, Entropy, and The Shroud Of Turin – updated video
    http://vimeo.com/34084462

    Scientists say Turin Shroud is supernatural – December 2011
    Excerpt: After years of work trying to replicate the colouring on the shroud, a similar image has been created by the scientists.
    However, they only managed the effect by scorching equivalent linen material with high-intensity ultra violet lasers, undermining the arguments of other research, they say, which claims the Turin Shroud is a medieval hoax.
    Such technology, say researchers from the National Agency for New Technologies, Energy and Sustainable Economic Development (Enea), was far beyond the capability of medieval forgers, whom most experts have credited with making the famous relic.
    “The results show that a short and intense burst of UV directional radiation can colour a linen cloth so as to reproduce many of the peculiar characteristics of the body image on the Shroud of Turin,” they said.
    And in case there was any doubt about the preternatural degree of energy needed to make such distinct marks, the Enea report spells it out: “This degree of power cannot be reproduced by any normal UV source built to date.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/n.....79512.html

    The absorbed energy in the Shroud body image formation appears as contributed by discrete values – Giovanni Fazio, Giuseppe Mandaglio – 2008
    Excerpt: This result means that the optical density distribution,, can not be attributed at the absorbed energy described in the framework of the classical physics model. It is, in fact, necessary to hypothesize a absorption by discrete values of the energy where the ‘quantum’ is equal to the one necessary to yellow one fibril.
    http://cab.unime.it/journals/i.....802004/271

    Verses and music:

    Colossians 1:15-20
    The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.

    John 14:6
    Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

    Natalie Grant – Alive (Resurrection music video)
    lyric: “Death has lost and Love has won!”
    http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=KPYWPGNX

  49. 49
    bw says:

    Hi Jered, just a quick thanks for the questions/responses in here, it’s nice to read back-and-forth on the topic without the usual hostilities that ensue.
    🙂 commendable

    Regardless of the masses, I wonder do you personally ever doubt your position from time to time?

    For instance have you ever though…”hmm that seems odd or unexpected” when you read a new science paper that contains information that doesn’t quite fall in line with your current understanding.

    I am asking this because I have definitely had doubts myself and am happy to admit it, but I have never had discussions with someone firmly on the darwinian camp who will admit to ever doubting themselves. So I am trying to work out if there are any aspects of the world view held by believers (understanders) of evolution, that you guys are not that sure about.

    Do you ever see a mimic moth or a squid with a lure or a documentary on the eyes of a kingfisher or the genius in the cell or…. any number of millions of things that I would think could cause a naturalist to question if evolution is the correct and complete explanation.

    Doesn’t have to be observational either, could be a simple math problem that could trigger some doubt.

    Ever found that to be the case? If so what was it and did you get over it somehow?
    Am am asking you because you seem like nice chap who might provide some honesty 🙂 and I am genuinely curious.

    b

  50. 50
    Jerad says:

    Jerad, Please link to this alleged evolutionary “theory”- or just admit that it doesn’t exist.

    Read The Greatest Show On Earth. Or Why Evolution is True. Or Only a Theory. Or any university level evolutionary textbook.

    a) provide clear and independent evidence of natural selection actually doing something

    See above answer.

    b) present a clear and coherent of evolutionary theory that has explanatory power and is specific about what was evolved, how, and when?

    See above answer.

    c) Tell us how many mutations it takes to get a chordate from a population of non-chordates

    No one will ever know how many mutations actually occurred. Besides, if one day you walk to the local shop and you take 4,385 steps does that means you took 4,385 steps last week or last month?

    Ya see Jerad, if you had something, anything at all, then ID would be a non-starter.

    Uh huh. Joe is right and thousands and thousands of working biologists are wrong.

    Have you got an alternative that

    a) explains all the genetic, morphological, bio-geographic diversity and morphological data?

    b) is coherent, specific and explanatory?

    c) is not just a negative argument against evolutionary theory?

    d) have you found evidence for extra coding in the cell that you choose to believe in without any indication of where it is or what structure carries it?

    e) try not to fall back on your canards: you’ve got no evidence, ID is not antithetical to common descent, etc. Your arguments are empty without details and you’ve been remarkably sparse with details.

    OK so the evidence says that convergent evolution can explain similarities down to the genetic level. That means common descent is not the only explanation for those similarities.

    If you have an idea then present it. Make sure it’s specific and founded on evidence.

    jerad, since you are not really listening to anything anyone has to say, I figure I might as well go ahead and reflect on a few thoughts I’ve had this morning. jerad exactly how is absolute truth grounded within the randomness/chaos of your atheistic naturalism?

    As usual, if I disagree with you you think I’m not listening. And then you go off on another one of your Gish-gallops of links.

    I don’t know what the presence (or not) of absolute truth has to do with evolutionary theory. Or atheism. Or even the topic of this thread. Sorry, but I think you’re heading way off topic. But I doubt you’ll be called on that ’cause you seem to have carte blanche here.

  51. 51
    Axel says:

    ‘Maybe you should look at the countries those ‘foreign’ scientists came from and see whether ID is considered to be a viable alternative to evolutionary theory in those places. Have you done so? Do you know that your merchant of doubt stance is considered to be laughable and weird over most of Europe?’

    You’re a character, Jerad, and no one can deny that.

    Do you really believe that the atheist-scientist myrmidons who pass for scientists these days, are more intellectually gifted than Einstein, Planck, Godel, Bohr, Pauli – all the greats of the modern scientific age. That is a religious belief: secular fundamentalism at its most risible.

    Argument from authority? You bet it is. Never mind what Plato, Aristotle or Diogenes opined. Indeed, I think it far more sensible not to look at the matter through the wrong end of a municipal drain-pipe, but with eyes wide open, viz. that yours are arguments not from authority, but from a vacuous mutual admiration society. Einstein and Pauli, to name but two, hardly hid their contempt for the consensus of their day – and guess what.. it’s still the same one.

    A 200 year-old consensus.. roughly contemporaneous with the industrial revolution. Well, who’d a thunk? The age of classical physics had run its course, absorbed by technology, by the time the real scientists of the mid 20th century put their minds to the theoretical physics you hapless mutts make your living from.

    But you don’t want to know, do you – that hateful quantum- mechanics mystagogy! And all the questioning it gives rise to…

    ‘AND you still haven’t proposed any hard, independent evidence for the presence of a designer who . . . did what exactly? And when?’

    That’s like asking a fish to prove it lives in water. His interrogator needs to prove that he is not entirely brain-dead. Wake up to yourself man! None of you bozos have ever even begun to prove that everything with an APPEARANCE.. (that nasty empiricism rearing its ugly head again) of design, around us was not, either designed and made by man, or by an omniscient and omnipotent Creator.

    You are the best possible lobbyists for the notion that we’re essentially meat-heads, and the mind came as an after-thought. Correction: after-series of random coinkidinkies. That anyone, on the basis of no more than whimsy, could be so perverse as to believe that mere matter could create mind beggars belief!

  52. 52
    Jerad says:

    Regardless of the masses, I wonder do you personally ever doubt your position from time to time?

    Yes I do. Especially since I started visiting this blog.

    I am asking this because I have definitely had doubts myself and am happy to admit it, but I have never had discussions with someone firmly on the darwinian camp who will admit to ever doubting themselves. So I am trying to work out if there are any aspects of the world view held by believers (understanders) of evolution, that you guys are not that sure about.

    If you read the letters section of an evolutionary journal or attend a conference you will find many topics that biologists are trying to hammer out a consensus. Dr Lynn Margolis’ ideas are a famous historical example of someone having to fight tooth and nail to get their ideas accepted by the field.

    Do you ever see a mimic moth or a squid with a lure or a documentary on the eyes of a kingfisher or the genius in the cell or…. any number of millions of things that I would think could cause a naturalist to question if evolution is the correct and complete explanation.

    Those are not my particular areas of doubt.

    Doesn’t have to be observational either, could be a simple math problem that could trigger some doubt.

    I’d say some of the things that have given me pause have been that kind of issue.

    I think that any one who is honest admits that all scientific ideas and theories are provisional. There’s always the possibility that some new evidence or insight will force a paradigm shift. During the last couple of hundred years the shifts have been more refinement than overthrow however. The theory of relativity and quantum mechanics didn’t exactly invalidate Newton’s laws of motion but they added layers of refinement and specification. Newton’s laws still work perfectly well in many situations and so it’s just a matter of knowing when and when not to use them.

    IF the ID community can find hard and independent evidence of the presence of a designer AND hypothesise what s/he/it did and when (at least) then I think it will get some legs. But I’m not sure that was the motivation behind the promulgation of ID. I think Dr Behe is a serious and conscientious supporter and I’ve got lots of time for him. He and Darwin both realised that the discovery of an irreducibly complex life form or part would absolutely damage evolutionary theory. But such a thing has not been found . . . yet.

    The ID community needs to do a lot of work. So far all they’ve got is some vague ideas which don’t really add up to much. Get some evidence, get specific, do some work. To overcome 150 of accumulated evidence will be extremely difficult but it COULD happen. Claiming a designer is an extraordinary claim and so will require extraordinary evidence.

    I don’t mean to put ID and alien visitation at the same level of seriousness (because they’re not) but I would say the same to people who claim we are being visited by aliens. You’re going to have to do a lot better than some dodgy photos and sincere people who may be suffering from sleep paralysis.

  53. 53
    bornagain77 says:

    jerad, should I come back later when you actually have a coherent argument, or are you forever going to blow hot air with no empirical substance?,, For instance perhaps you can list a molecular machine arrived at by purely Darwinian processes so as to falsify ID?

    maybe I should come back in fifty years?

  54. 54
    Jerad says:

    Do you really believe that the atheist-scientist myrmidons who pass for scientists these days, are more intellectually gifted than Einstein, Planck, Godel, Bohr, Pauli – all the greats of the modern scientific age. That is a religious belief: secular fundamentalism at its most risible.

    I don’t think I even implied I think that way.

    Argument from authority? You bet it is. Never mind what Plato, Aristotle or Diogenes opined. Indeed, I think it far more sensible not to look at the matter through the wrong end of a municipal drain-pipe, but with eyes wide open, viz. that yours are arguments not from authority, but from a vacuous mutual admiration society. Einstein and Pauli, to name but two, hardly hid their contempt for the consensus of their day – and guess what.. it’s still the same one.

    Are you going to ask me a question or make a point other than insulting what you assume are my motivations?

    A 200 year-old consensus.. roughly contemporaneous with the industrial revolution. Well, who’d a thunk? The age of classical physics had run its course, absorbed by technology, by the time the real scientists of the mid 20th century put their minds to the theoretical physics you hapless mutts make your living from.

    I don’t know what to say. Mostly because I don’t know what you’re trying to say.

    But you don’t want to know, do you – that hateful quantum- mechanics mystagogy! And all the questioning it gives rise to…

    What?

    ‘AND you still haven’t proposed any hard, independent evidence for the presence of a designer who . . . did what exactly? And when?’

    That’s like asking a fish to prove it lives in water. His interrogator needs to prove that he is not entirely brain-dead. Wake up to yourself man! None of you bozos have ever even begun to prove that everything with an APPEARANCE.. (that nasty empiricism rearing its ugly head again) of design, around us was not, either designed and made by man, or by an omniscient and omnipotent Creator.

    Oh right. I get it now. I’m an idiot because I prefer empirical evidence. Nice to see this level of debate here.

    You are the best possible lobbyists for the notion that we’re essentially meat-heads, and the mind came as an after-thought. Correction: after-series of random coinkidinkies. That anyone, on the basis of no more than whimsy, could be so perverse as to believe that mere matter could create mind beggars belief!

    So, you are making an argument from incredulity?

  55. 55
    Jerad says:

    jerad, should I come back later when you actually have a coherent argument, or are you forever going to blow hot air with no empirical substance?,, For instance perhaps you can list a molecular machine arrived at by purely Darwinian processes so as to falsify ID?

    Well, I’d say every mechanical machine.

    How about you? Can you

    a) present a coherent and specific theory of ID?

    b) provide clear and independent evidence of a designer who did something somtime . . . no one is really sure.

    c) come up with an argument against evolutionary theory that is substantially more than: you guys can’t spell out every single step so it must be designed? Especially since you refuse to even attempt to provide an answer yourselves?

    d) do better than to just post link after link after link pointing to non-academic videos and blogs?

    maybe I should come back in fifty years?

    Whenever you wish. But I would like to know . . .

    Why do you think it’s fair to reject evolutionary theory when it can’t provide a precise molecular path from one stage to a another when NO ONE in the ID community will even speculate on WHEN and HOW design was implemented?

    This is just one of the reasons people don’t take ID seriously: no substance. And an obvious double standard.

    You can only stand on the sidelines and bitch and moan so long. Someday you have to put on your helmet and play the game. Or not. It’s your call.

  56. 56
    Axel says:

    My! My! Even employing a stooge, now, Jerad. It reminds me of homosexuals finding their truculence not that effective on Christian forums, posting in sweet, measured, hesitant tones, disingenuously claiming to be sincere seekers of the truth, but unable to hide their anti-Christian bigotry, in the way they proceed to frame their questions – which they clearly think are killers!

    ‘He and Darwin both realised that the discovery of an irreducibly complex life form or part would absolutely damage evolutionary theory. But such a thing has not been found . . . yet.

    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....44801.html

    If you think such complex machinery could have arisen from random chance, Jerad, you must be brain dead.

  57. 57
    Jerad says:

    My! My! Even employing a stooge, now, Jerad. It reminds me of homosexuals finding their truculence not that effective on Christian forums, posting in sweet, measured, hesitant tones, disingenuously claiming to be sincere seekers of the truth, but unable to hide their anti-Christian bigotry, in the way they proceed to frame their questions – which they clearly think are killers!

    What? A stooge? I don’t know who you are referring to but I hope he’s suitably insulted that you think he’s a stooge. You should be more careful about which potential allies you disregard.

    If you think such complex machinery could have arisen from random chance, Jerad, you must be brain dead.

    (Shrugs) I just don’t see the evidence for a designer nor do I find the need to hypothesise one.

  58. 58
    Axel says:

    ‘Oh right. I get it now. I’m an idiot because I prefer empirical evidence. Nice to see this level of debate here.’

    So, a fish doesn’t have evidence that it lives in water! I couldn’t improve on that as a fifth-columnist seeking to discredit you.

    QED

    And I expect people thought I was exaggerating when I opined that you are brain-dead. Pardon me if I cease thse exchanges, herewith. I don’t wish to mock the afflicted. At least Alan Fox and Gregory have enough nous simply to remain silent when ‘found out’ in spades. Although Alan grizzled incoherently for a while about Jesus drawing a line in the sand.

  59. 59
    Jerad says:

    So, a fish doesn’t have evidence that it lives in water! I couldn’t improve on that as a fifth-columnist seeking to discredit you.

    Who ever questioned fish living in water anyway? Why would you even ask such a thing?

    Whereas it’s NOT obvious that some things are designed. And no matter how much you bluster and insult it doesn’t make the design of DNA obvious or true.

    And I expect people thought I was exaggerating when I opined that you are brain-dead. Pardon me if I cease thse exchanges, herewith. I don’t wish to mock the afflicted. At least Alan Fox and Gregory have enough nous simply to remain silent when ‘found out’ in spades. Although Alan grizzled incoherently for a while about Jesus drawing a line in the sand.

    Whatever. Your insults weren’t that funny or original anyway.

    Nor were you able to:

    a) provide a clear and cogent theory of ID which explains all of the data without just saying: I haven’t been shown every single step it took to get from A to B therefore design.

    b) show any solid and independent evidence for a designer.

    c) give an argument against evolutionary theory that (in your case) didn’t boil down to: if you think (insert example here) wasn’t designed then you are brain dead.

    Anyway, have a nice Sunday.

  60. 60
    bw says:

    Hi Jered, thanks for the response.

    Interesting that you don’t find observable nature more puzzling, I think there is a fair deal of things that at mere surface level should raise some questions, or eyebrows at least.

    On the numbers front, here is an interesting thing to think about. I like it because it surrounds the issue of the similarity between chimp and human dna – something that has been a source of much ado on the whole evolution/id/creation/? scene.
    It has been reported that the two were 98+% similar, then 95%, then 90%. The fact is they are close, very close. While it might end up being less than 90% at some point in the future (I have seen research suggesting it is more like 70%) but it is neither here nor there for this problem.
    Lets suppose they were right with a 95% similarity between the genome.
    @ 3,000,000 base pairs in the human genome a difference of 5% is 150,000,000 base pairs that have changed since they split from a common ancestor.
    (I am rounding the numbers down to simplify)
    Divide that number in half again attributing 50% of the changes equally across chimps and humans.
    That leaves you with 75,000,000 (75 million base pairs to evolve to account for the 5% difference mentioned above).
    The latest common ancestors of humans and chimps between is though to have lived about 5,000,000 (5 million) years ago.
    With an assumed generation time of 20 years based on the chimps rather than humans (26 years) this allows for 250,000 generations.
    If we then were to assume that it would take 10 generations for said mutation to spread and fix into a small population then we end up with the following:
    250,000 / 10 = 25,000 key transitional species.
    75,000,000 / 25,000 = 3,000 mutations per contributing generation to account for the change.

    Now the numbers are rough but illustrate the problem quite clearly. Studies show that humans can have 100 mutations per generation (I have seen 300 reported as a hight), although more recent tests have shown 30-50 to be more accurate as more care was taken during the process (something like 22 times they scanned the entire 3 billion+ base pairs to ensure their findings were good and no read errors were made).

    There is simply nowhere near enough time to account for the differences, that even despite the fact we on the surface (95% or whatever the number) appear so similar.
    We can look at mutations happening now and see what they do, mostly deleterious and mostly non-beneficial.
    So we have to believe that in the past nature just worked differently I suppose. Instead of mutations causing anything from no change to disease and death, it created new proteins and changed designs for new and improved ones. 🙁 Got to make you think.
    When we see animals that can be found both in the fossil record and alive now how different do we suppose their genomes are. Sharks, turtles, bats, coelacanths, crocodiles, amami-rabbits (yes a 40 million year old rabbit), elephants, hippos, beavers etc… I would bet good money that if we could compare their current dna to that of their many million year old ancestor’s they would be incredibly similar – which would fly in the face of what should be happening.
    Anyway it is just something to consider, and only one example of many many problems with the idea of evolution as the sole answer to what we see today.

    With regards to the idea of intelligent design, I am not a big fan or advocate. I don’t think it is something that should be proved or taught or anything like that.
    ID should have nothing what so ever to do with one’s understanding of evolution theory. You do not need anything else in place before you are allowed to question it.
    b

  61. 61
    Jerad says:

    Now the numbers are rough but illustrate the problem quite clearly. Studies show that humans can have 100 mutations per generation (I have seen 300 reported as a hight), although more recent tests have shown 30-50 to be more accurate as more care was taken during the process (something like 22 times they scanned the entire 3 billion+ base pairs to ensure their findings were good and no read errors were made).

    Not all of the 3 billion base pairs are coding. And the number of base pairs probably changed. Certainly chimps and humans have different numbers of chromosomes.

    Also, is that 100 mutations per generation per individual? You’d have to account for how many individuals there were. And 20 years is a severe overestimate of the gap between generations for those creatures. Even humans can start reproducing much younger than 20. Also it’s more like 6 million years. Most mothers would give birth over two or three ‘generations’. I think the math is more complicated than you’ve represented.

    When we see animals that can be found both in the fossil record and alive now how different do we suppose their genomes are. Sharks, turtles, bats, coelacanths, crocodiles, amami-rabbits (yes a 40 million year old rabbit), elephants, hippos, beavers etc… I would bet good money that if we could compare their current dna to that of their many million year old ancestor’s they would be incredibly similar – which would fly in the face of what should be happening.

    We’ll never know. But we will get better and better at comparing morphology to genomes.

    I’m not trying to gloss over the issue but I think it’s more complicated than your analysis shows and so there’s more issues to resolve. There’s a lot we still don’t know.

    With regards to the idea of intelligent design, I am not a big fan or advocate. I don’t think it is something that should be proved or taught or anything like that.
    ID should have nothing what so ever to do with one’s understanding of evolution theory. You do not need anything else in place before you are allowed to question it.

    Questioning is on thing. Trying to tear down is something else.

    If you’re really interested then get a university level books on human genetics.

  62. 62
    bw says:

    Severe overestimation? Research from a 2012 paper on evolution shows otherwise my friend:

    The age of chimpanzee fathers ranged from 9.3 to 50.4 y,
    whereas age of mothers ranged from 11.7 to 45.4 y (Fig. S1).
    Thus, the potential reproductive span of males (41.1 y) is some
    7 y, or 22%, longer than that of females (33.7 y). Nonetheless,
    because more than half (56.2%) of the offspring are produced by
    fathers between the ages of 15 and 25, whereas most offspring
    (77%) have mothers between the ages of 15 and 34, the average
    generation time for males and females is essentially the same
    (24.1 and 25.2 y, respectively).

    So my 20 was conservative according to the facts.

  63. 63
    Jerad says:

    The age of chimpanzee fathers ranged from 9.3 to 50.4 y,
    whereas age of mothers ranged from 11.7 to 45.4 y (Fig. S1).
    Thus, the potential reproductive span of males (41.1 y) is some
    7 y, or 22%, longer than that of females (33.7 y). Nonetheless,
    because more than half (56.2%) of the offspring are produced by
    fathers between the ages of 15 and 25, whereas most offspring
    (77%) have mothers between the ages of 15 and 34, the average
    generation time for males and females is essentially the same
    (24.1 and 25.2 y, respectively).

    So my 20 was conservative according to the facts.

    Okay, so how many individuals would you estimate to be born each generation? As a function of the adult population?

    I’m trying to make the point that there is no fixed ‘generation’. There’s a rolling population with a certain birth and death rate.

    So, the number of mutations per ‘generation’ would depend on how many individuals were born in that generation.

    Let’s say a mother gave birth three times in one 20-year period. And let’s say each baby had a different father. How much variation could there be between the offspring of those three children?

    It seems to me that at any one time, in a fairly large (say 30 – 50 individuals) there could be quite a lot of new genetic variation. More than just 100 points of variance.

  64. 64
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad,

    It is a little saddening that after a very busy day of exchanges in this thread, the fundamental issues you need to face remain as they were at 25 above (and pretty much as in the challenge of Sep 23 last year that you chose to pass on).

    Ishould also note a substitution and subject-switcheroo you are making. The issue is empirical evidence that per testing reliably points to design as causal process.

    To in effect demand direct evidence of a designer apart from signs of handiwork of same in a context where we were not in a position to actually observe the relevant actual past is selectively hyperskeptical by way of strawman.

    On the science of origins, one thing we simply do not have access to is direct observations of the past.

    Next to that, the pivotal issue is the origin of FSCO/I.

    So, I clip:

    KF, 25: >>In science, every tub must stand on its own observationally grounded bottom.

    We do have billions of observed cases of origin of functionally specific complex organisation and associated/implied information. In every one of these, the observed cause is design — as comments in this thread illustrate for coded strings. This is backed up by the challenge of searching astronomically large configuration spaces for components, with the unexpectedly sharp constraint of available resources on a solar system or observed cosmos basis. Thus once we see 500 – 1,000 bits of FSCO/I we are well beyond a scope where blind chance and/or mechanical necessity by whatever mechanisms, is remotely plausible.

    Here, too, we are addressing a remote past of origins we cannot observe directly. So, per Newton’s rules of scientific reasoning, we can only examine and compare traces from that past with circumstances in the present that show us factors capable of giving rise to the like. That means, BTW, that the all too common ideological (and historically/logically unwarranted) move of trying to redefine science on materialistic philosophy to exclude unwelcome possibilities such as design is a case of ideological distortion.

    All this brings us to the root of the tree of life, OOL.

    Including, origin of codes, algorithms, execution machines, a von Neumann kinematic self replicator manifesting more of these, implemented using C-chemistry molecular nanotech, in aqueous medium and manifesting metabolic and self replicating processes, etc. All, in a cosmos fine tuned in ways that make such life possible, from the basic physics of the cosmos on up.

    From the root of the tree of life, design sits at the table as of right on its merits. Save, where nasty power games artificially exclude it.

    The usual critics of design theory no longer seem willing to even try to provide a serious case on OOL in such a fine tuned cosmos. Sir Fred’s super-intellect monkeying with the very physics of the cosmos has won the day. Sometimes, the dog that refuses to bark speaks loudly indeed.

    And, when we move up to origin of body plans and key features, including our own with linguistic, cognitive and moral capacities, we see even higher FSCO/I thresholds, with no serious non-question begging evolutionary materialist explanation.

    The assumed default that unobserved capabilities of chance/non foresighted variation leading to differential reproductive success, thence incremental descent with unlimited variation — for all its institutional and ideological dominance in an age of lingering scientism — lacks empirical foundations.

    The situation where the pro-darwinism essay challenge issued to you Jerad and opened to all comers since Sep 23 2012 stands without serious and comprehensive summary answer a full year later less a fortnight or so, speaks volumes. (Remember, a successful essay would have been a knockout punch for UD.)

    Every tub must stand on its own bottom.>>

    KF

  65. 65
    Collin says:

    Jerad,

    Here is a “rabbit” in the “Cambrian”. http://living-fossils.com/3_1.php

    I think that it is unfair to require ID to have all of the answers. ID is actually a very humble theory when compared to both creationism and evolutionism. It keeps its hypothesis narrow, to wit: certain features of the world exhibit signs of design. That’s it! It is not a creation story or even a world-view. Evolution and creationism are worldviews with their own all-encompassing creation story. That is why people who have their belief challenged (either in evolution or creationism) get so upset. It strikes at their entire worldview.

  66. 66
    wd400 says:

    BW,

    The human-chimp speciation time is calculated from molecular sequence data, so you calculations are obviously wrong.

    For neutral mutations, which are the vast majority, the substitution rate (i.e. the rate at which mutations fix) is equal to the mutations rate per individual, which makes the maths very straight forward…

  67. 67
    Mapou says:

    Me:

    The fact is that design is not just the better explanation here but the only explanation. Modern evolutionary theory just bit the dust, hard. Genetic convergence just killed it.

    Jerad:

    Again, YOU can’t understand how natural processes can account for life as we know it, therefore, design.

    Design is NOT the better explanation because it hypothesises an unknown and undefined designer whose abilities and timeframe have not been specified. That’s not an explanation at all! That’s just wishful thinking.

    Wow. ID does not say anything about a designer or even many designers other than the observation that an intelligent agency is needed in order to explain the existence of life on earth. Why should ID say anything about the designers? I don’t see you getting all bent out of shape over those super silly OOL theories being bandied shamelessly about by evolutionists. Life springing out of dirt all by itself is as absurd as it gets. The word superstition does not do it justice.

    After 150 years of research evolution is the default explanation. We’ve found no hard evidence that disproves it. If you think you’ve got a ‘better’ explanation then you have to do more than just try and point out the gaps in evolutionary theory. You have to do more than just say: look there, you don’t know how this or that happened therefore design.

    But that is not my argument at all. Do you love wrestling with your self-generated strawmen much? It is obvious to all except the willingly blind that the convergence of complex identical genetic code segments for echolocation in disparate species could not have happened by natural means. The only alternative explanation calls for an intelligent agency. Common sense 101. The only ignorance I see is blowing in from your side of the fence.

    You have to, at the very least, start being specific about what ID is saying. And if you need to do more research to be able to be more specific then do the research. Do some work. Prove your case. Find the evidence. Stop using arguments of ignorance to try and prove a negative and then jump to an assumption.

    You are just urinating against the wind, amigo. The case for design is proven a thousand times over. Just because you are too grey-matter challenged or too much of a poltron to see it does not mean it’s not true.

  68. 68
    Jerad says:

    To in effect demand direct evidence of a designer apart from signs of handiwork of same in a context where we were not in a position to actually observe the relevant actual past is selectively hyperskeptical by way of strawman.

    Well, why am I continually asked for data about the evolutionary process that I can not possible answer? Why am I asked ‘how many mutations does it take to . . . ‘ accomplish some particular goal? All the time. And yet you never call your side on that. Why is that?

    On the science of origins, one thing we simply do not have access to is direct observations of the past.

    And yet you keep saying I have to address that because it’s pivotal.

    Next to that, the pivotal issue is the origin of FSCO/I.

    That’s your issue. Not one that evolutionary theory worries about. It’s a castle you’re defending that no one is attacking.

    We do have billions of observed cases of origin of functionally specific complex organisation and associated/implied information. In every one of these, the observed cause is design

    Human design. You have observed examples of human design. What makes you think you can extrapolate beyond that?

    — as comments in this thread illustrate for coded strings. This is backed up by the challenge of searching astronomically large configuration spaces for components, with the unexpectedly sharp constraint of available resources on a solar system or observed cosmos basis. Thus once we see 500 – 1,000 bits of FSCO/I we are well beyond a scope where blind chance and/or mechanical necessity by whatever mechanisms, is remotely plausible.

    NO ONE in biology is saying that there has to be an exhaustive search through a vast configuration space. You’ve created that non-existent issue. It’s your strawman.

    Here, too, we are addressing a remote past of origins we cannot observe directly. So, per Newton’s rules of scientific reasoning, we can only examine and compare traces from that past with circumstances in the present that show us factors capable of giving rise to the like. That means, BTW, that the all too common ideological (and historically/logically unwarranted) move of trying to redefine science on materialistic philosophy to exclude unwelcome possibilities such as design is a case of ideological distortion.

    Whatever. You have no evidence that there was an intelligent agent around at the time. A non-existent intelligence is not capable of anything. You are trying to ‘magic’ a designer into existence.

    Including, origin of codes, algorithms, execution machines, a von Neumann kinematic self replicator manifesting more of these, implemented using C-chemistry molecular nanotech, in aqueous medium and manifesting metabolic and self replicating processes, etc. All, in a cosmos fine tuned in ways that make such life possible, from the basic physics of the cosmos on up.

    An argument from ignorance: we don’t know how natural processes could have done it therefore design.

    From the root of the tree of life, design sits at the table as of right on its merits. Save, where nasty power games artificially exclude it.

    Design needs a designer. Where is your designer? When is your designer? How did they implement the design you claim to detect?

    The usual critics of design theory no longer seem willing to even try to provide a serious case on OOL in such a fine tuned cosmos. Sir Fred’s super-intellect monkeying with the very physics of the cosmos has won the day. Sometimes, the dog that refuses to bark speaks loudly indeed.

    Uh huh, you’ve been keeping up with OoL research then?

    And, when we move up to origin of body plans and key features, including our own with linguistic, cognitive and moral capacities, we see even higher FSCO/I thresholds, with no serious non-question begging evolutionary materialist explanation.

    So you say. There are other opinions.

    The assumed default that unobserved capabilities of chance/non foresighted variation leading to differential reproductive success, thence incremental descent with unlimited variation — for all its institutional and ideological dominance in an age of lingering scientism — lacks empirical foundations.

    And your argument from ignorance coupled with trying to prove a negative (natural processes aren’t up to the job) IS based on empirical foundations? Along with your pseudo-mathematical information hand waving?

    The situation where the pro-darwinism essay challenge issued to you Jerad and opened to all comers since Sep 23 2012 stands without serious and comprehensive summary answer a full year later less a fortnight or so, speaks volumes. (Remember, a successful essay would have been a knockout punch for UD.)

    Hey, if you haven’t found 150 years of research and many, many popular books convincing then why would I bother? I’ve got nothing to say that hasn’t already been said many times by others better informed than me. Go read them. And perhaps you should work on an explanation of what ID theory is.

    Every tub must stand on its own bottom.>>

    And what is ID’s bottom? What is your concise, explanatory theory of ID? You claim there are islands of function in a great configuration space and yet you cannot delineate them. Where exactly are the limits? At the genus level? The family level? If your configuration space is so vast then how did the designer search it? With it’s vast intelligence? How many floating point operations per second can it manage? How much energy does that take?

  69. 69
    Jerad says:

    Here is a “rabbit” in the “Cambrian”. http://living-fossils.com/3_1.php

    Hardly.

    I think that it is unfair to require ID to have all of the answers. ID is actually a very humble theory when compared to both creationism and evolutionism. It keeps its hypothesis narrow, to wit: certain features of the world exhibit signs of design. That’s it! It is not a creation story or even a world-view. Evolution and creationism are worldviews with their own all-encompassing creation story. That is why people who have their belief challenged (either in evolution or creationism) get so upset. It strikes at their entire worldview.

    Well, people on this forum expect me to answer how many mutations did such-and-such transition take. Do you think that is fair? Evolutionary theory is expected to spell out how life began. Aside from the fact that evolutionary theory is not concerned with the origin of life do you think that’s fair?

    ID proponents say evolutionary theory is on its knees, is ideologically driven and cannot explain everything. Therefore it must go. To be replaced with . . . design. And yet ID cannot answer or address any of the questions they ask and expect evolutionary theory to answer and address.

    Do you think that’s a fair request?

  70. 70
    Mung says:

    Jerad:

    why am I continually asked for data about the evolutionary process that I can not possible answer?

    Perhaps because we want you to really understand that you cannot possibly answer the questions. If you cannot possibly answer, it follows that no one else can possibly answer it. It follows that evolutionary “explanations” are not in fact explanations at all.

    So please stop pretending that they are.

  71. 71
    Jerad says:

    Wow. ID does not say anything about a designer or even many designers other than the observation that an intelligent agency is needed in order to explain the existence of life on earth. Why should ID say anything about the designers?

    Can’t have design without a designer. What did you say was designed by the way? And when?

    I don’t see you getting all bent out of shape over those super silly OOL theories being bandied shamelessly about by evolutionists. Life springing out of dirt all by itself is as absurd as it gets. The word superstition does not do it justice.

    What specifically do find silly? Which hypothesis do you think is unfounded? Don’t just wave it all away because you can’t understand how any of it could work. Which specific speculations do you think are wrong and why?

    But that is not my argument at all. Do you love wrestling with your self-generated strawmen much? It is obvious to all except the willingly blind that the convergence of complex identical genetic code segments for echolocation in disparate species could not have happened by natural means. The only alternative explanation calls for an intelligent agency. Common sense 101. The only ignorance I see is blowing in from your side of the fence.

    Right, so your common sense says it couldn’t happen so it must be designed. But you’ve neglected to be specific: what exactly was designed and when? Was every single minor change in body form planned and implemented? Was there some grand, developmental plan that the unproven designer was following? What does your common sense tell you about that?

    You are just urinating against the wind, amigo. The case for design is proven a thousand times over. Just because you are too grey-matter challenged or too much of a poltron to see it does not mean it’s not true.

    Uh huh. Design has been proved but you can’t tell me any specifics? Can you tell me how designs were implemented? Can you tell me when designs were implemented?

    “Oh, that’s not something ID addresses.” It doesn’t explain much does it?

    What is ID really saying? What was designed? Let’s just start with that: at what stage in the development of life on earth was design used? At the origin of life? Only there? What was the initial life form like? How complex was it? What did it eat? How did it reproduce? Was there only one or two initial life forms or a group? How many?

    If design was imposed more that just at the origin of life then when?

  72. 72
    Jerad says:

    Perhaps because we want you to really understand that you cannot possibly answer the questions. If you cannot possibly answer, it follows that no one else can possibly answer it. It follows that evolutionary “explanations” are not in fact explanations at all.

    So please stop pretending that they are.

    So, if evolutionary theory can’t answer certain questions then it’s rubbish and should be replaced with ID?

    And ID doesn’t even have to attempt to answer much of anything does it?

    When was design implemented? Only once or many times? Should we start there?

    The design inference was the default assumption for tens of thousands of years and yet there is not consensus about what was designed and when.

    Evolutionary theory has been developed for a bit over 150 years and yet it’s failed? Really?

  73. 73
    Collin says:

    Jerad,

    Let me be clear. I did not mean to say that all of your criticisms of ID are off-base. You touch on some of the challenges that ID needs to grapple with. But I do not believe that ID needs to identify the designer or his laboratory or methods. The theory is that “design” is a feature that can be detected independent of knowledge of the method of creating the artifact. Maybe the theory is wrong, but I think that it is an interesting and provocative idea that deserves to be explored. Especially given the weakness of the alternative theory.

  74. 74
    Mung says:

    Jerad:

    So, if evolutionary theory can’t answer certain questions then it’s rubbish and should be replaced with ID?

    We’re simply asking you to face the facts Jerad, the facts that you’ve already admitted. My post @70 doesn’t even mention ID.

    Why is it that when you are asked to face the facts, the only alternative you can come up with is intelligent design?

    How does that change the facts?

  75. 75
    Mapou says:

    Jerad @72:

    So, if evolutionary theory can’t answer certain questions then it’s rubbish and should be replaced with ID?

    Absolutely. Certain observed phenomena, such as genetic convergence and orphan genes, cannot be the result of natural (i.e., non-intelligent) processes. There is only one alternative: intelligent design.

  76. 76
    Jerad says:

    Let me be clear. I did not mean to say that all of your criticisms of ID are off-base. You touch on some of the challenges that ID needs to grapple with. But I do not believe that ID needs to identify the designer or his laboratory or methods. The theory is that “design” is a feature that can be detected independent of knowledge of the method of creating the artifact. Maybe the theory is wrong, but I think that it is an interesting and provocative idea that deserves to be explored. Especially given the weakness of the alternative theory.

    How about “when was design implemented” at least then? Do you think that’s a fair question?

  77. 77
    Jerad says:

    We’re simply asking you to face the facts Jerad, the facts that you’ve already admitted. My post @70 doesn’t even mention ID.

    Why is it that when you are asked to face the facts, the only alternative you can come up with is intelligent design?

    How does that change the facts?

    You act like evolutionary theory not being able to answer some questions is its death knell. And if I admitted that it can’t then why are you going on about it?

    I don’t think evolutionary theory is in any trouble. I think it’s gaining strength year by year. I do not think that ID is anywhere close to being a viable alternative.

  78. 78
    Querius says:

    Have you found the killer counter-example yet? A rabbit in the Cambrian say?

    If a rabbit were indeed found in the Cambrian, it would prove nothing. Instead one of three things would happen:

    a. Today’s rabbits would simply be labeled as “living fossils” as was the coelacanth.

    b. The fossil would be assigned a different genus and species even though its phenotype was identical. This was done with insects trapped in amber and with fossil nautiloids and octopi.

    c. The strata would be identified as “reworked” or downwashed.

    Thus such a discovery would pose no problem at all. Other fossils have already been handled in one of these ways.

  79. 79
    Robert Byers says:

    I think all along convergent evolution has been the soft underbelly or evolutionary error!
    Its unreasonable to expect such like conclusions from segregated evolutionary processes in unrelated biological entities!
    Its predictable from a concept of a creator , especially observing jis stuff in physics, to see common laws and conclusions for like needs. Don’t fix what’s not broke!
    Biology shows complexity but based on a common blueprint.
    YEC teaches we don’t live in the original blueprint because of the fall but its still noticable as a principal.
    Evolutionists surely would rather have, and point at us, unrelated biological entities have different conclusions to like needs due to unguided mitation evolution.
    Its not like that anywhere in biology.
    Put a fork in it ITS over for old chuck!
    I think 15 years will not pass before evolution is declared not only a non theory in biology but a unlikely hypothesis.

  80. 80
    sigaba says:

    a. Today’s rabbits would simply be labeled as “living fossils” as was the coelacanth.

    I don’t think they’d get away with that. Rabbits are mammals, that’s why they’re used in the scenario. It would unseat most of our accounts of animal evolution.

    b. The fossil would be assigned a different genus and species even though its phenotype was identical. This was done with insects trapped in amber and with fossil nautiloids and octopi.

    Genuses and species are not relevant to natural history as such. It doesn’t matter what we call something.

    c. The strata would be identified as “reworked” or downwashed.

    That would require geological evidence to support the conjecture. This wouldn’t exist in a seabed fossil find.

    Note- you can argue yourself horse about the “conspiracy” of “Darwin’s men” but it has no bearing on Intelligent Design, on the merits.

    Its unreasonable to expect such like conclusions from segregated evolutionary processes in unrelated biological entities!

    Assertions take on unassailable truth value when followed by an exclamation point!

  81. 81
    Jerad says:

    Absolutely. Certain observed phenomena, such as genetic convergence and orphan genes, cannot be the result of natural (i.e., non-intelligent) processes. There is only one alternative: intelligent design.

    Again, you’re using an argument from ignorance to try an prove a negative and then jumping to a conclusion.

    You DO NOT know that natural processes are incapable of doing certain things.

    You have not proved that it’s impossible for natural processes to have done those things.

    You do not get design EVEN IF you did manage to show natural processes to be inadequate.

    Meanwhile, the world waits to hear:

    a) what is THE theory/hypothesis of intelligent design? The one that has explanatory power and addresses some of the particular questions about when (at least) design was implemented.

    b) Where is the positive, unambiguous evidence that there was an intelligent designer around at the time capable of implementing the designs? You don’t get designs without a designer do you? If you have design and therefore a designer then why can’t you ask questions about the timing at least?

    c) Where is the ID research agenda? Why hasn’t there been a conference where all the interested scientists have met and agreed on what should be worked on, what the goals are? Doing so would at least show some initiative and belief that there is something to work on and discover.

    You can pick and poke at evolutionary theory for a long while if you wish. As the gaps in the knowledge get smaller and smaller. But until you do some work and start providing some answers then you’re not going to be taken very seriously.

    If you think the initial life form on earth was designed and created and then no more input was required start working on some obvious questions: What kind of critter/plant could it have been? How many would need to be created to start a viable population? How big would it’s genome have been?

    If you think design was implemented many, many times during the history of the earth then . . . when? At what stages? What are the indications that design has been introduced?

    Lots and lots of questions. Who is trying to answer those questions? Anyone?

  82. 82
    Jerad says:

    I don’t think they’d get away with that. Rabbits are mammals, that’s why they’re used in the scenario. It would unseat most of our accounts of animal evolution.

    That’s one reason it couldn’t be swept under the carpet.

  83. 83
    Jerad says:

    I think 15 years will not pass before evolution is declared not only a non theory in biology but a unlikely hypothesis.

    Wanna bet?

  84. 84
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    Ducking the bouncers, it seems.

    Without a viable empirically grounded physicalist theory of OOL, the root of the darwinist tree is missing. No roots, nothing else.

    The pivotal OOL issue is precisely the need to account for FSCO/I, without the favourite “natural selection” smokescreen — it has not got any actual creative force, it culls out, the real implied source of required info is chance variation [as in blind luck] — around to distract attention.

    There is no bottom for the tub.

    Next,we DO have a massively empirically warranted cause for FSCO/I, design.

    The real issue is not lack of evidence, but ideology. Namely a priori materialism.

    Then, on origin of body plans, dozens of times over, one has to come up with 10 – 100+ mn bits of further FSCO/I, within the solar system’s atomic resources. 500 bits is already far too much.

    Likewise, no credible observational evidence of capacity of blind chance and mechanical necessity.

    So, where we end up is with an utterly unwarranted ideological a priori imposed on science in order to prop up so-called “free thought” (what an ironic name) hiding in a lab coat.

    Multiplied by empirically unwarranted gross extrapolations of forces and factors that make minor changes within body plans.

    Game over.

    KF

  85. 85
    kairosfocus says:

    PS: J, to point out that a massively empirically warranted cause of a phenomenon — FSCO/I — is a superior explanation to one lacking both warrant and analytical plausibility [save to the ideological eye of darwinist faith] is neither an appeal to personal incredulity nor to ignorance. It is a proper inductive inference. But then we have been dealing with people challenged to accept self evident first principles. Be careful of sawing off the branch of inductive logic, science must sit on that branch. Oh, the irony.

  86. 86
    Joe says:

    Jerad, Please link to this alleged evolutionary “theory”- or just admit that it doesn’t exist.

    Read The Greatest Show On Earth. Or Why Evolution is True. Or Only a Theory. Or any university level evolutionary textbook.

    Nice bluff. The theory needs to be in a peer-reviewed journal- Einstein had his in peer-review.

    Heck I bet you can’t even produce a testable hypothesis for unfguided evolution.


    a) provide clear and independent evidence of natural selection actually doing something

    See above answer.

    So you can’t. That’s what I thought.


    b) present a clear and coherent of evolutionary theory that has explanatory power and is specific about what was evolved, how, and when?

    See above answer.

    Your bluff means nothing.

    c) Tell us how many mutations it takes to get a chordate from a population of non-chordates

    No one will ever know how many mutations actually occurred. Besides, if one day you walk to the local shop and you take 4,385 steps does that means you took 4,385 steps last week or last month?

    Umm there is an exact distance from where one starts to the local shop- it can be measured. OTOH your position has nothing to measure- it ain’t science.

    Joe is right and thousands and thousands of working biologists are wrong.

    LoL! Those biologists don’t have any evidence that unguided evolution can actually do something like construct a multi-protein configuration.

    Have you got an alternative tha

    Alternative to what? Please be specific.

    a) explains all the genetic, morphological, bio-geographic diversity and morphological data?

    Unguided evolution can’t explain any of that.

    b) is coherent, specific and explanatory?

    Unguided evolution isn’t any of that.

    c) is not just a negative argument against evolutionary theory?

    Only the willfully ignorant think that ID is only a negative argument against unguided evolution.

    d) have you found evidence for extra coding in the cell that you choose to believe in without any indication of where it is or what structure carries it?

    Yes and I have presented it. OTOH your position still has nothing.

    e) try not to fall back on your canards: you’ve got no evidence, ID is not antithetical to common descent, etc. Your arguments are empty without details and you’ve been remarkably sparse with details.

    Umm your position is void of details. It is also void of a testable hypothesis.


    OK so the evidence says that convergent evolution can explain similarities down to the genetic level. That means common descent is not the only explanation for those similarities.

    If you have an idea then present it. Make sure it’s specific and founded on evidence.

    Convergent evolution, duh- and unlike your position it is founded on evidence.

    Then there is common design- which we have experience with.

  87. 87
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    Dr Lynn Margolis’ ideas are a famous historical example of someone having to fight tooth and nail to get their ideas accepted by the field.

    And that idea still cannot be scientifically tested. All the idea has is “It looks like those structures could have been bacteria”

  88. 88
    Joe says:

    Lenski’s long-running experiment has no new proteins and no new functionality in over 50,000 generations. And absolutely nothing taht would show macro-evolution is possible.

  89. 89
    Jerad says:

    J, to point out that a massively empirically warranted cause of a phenomenon — FSCO/I — is a superior explanation to one lacking both warrant and analytical plausibility [save to the ideological eye of darwinist faith] is neither an appeal to personal incredulity nor to ignorance. It is a proper inductive inference. But then we have been dealing with people challenged to accept self evident first principles. Be careful of sawing off the branch of inductive logic, science must sit on that branch.

    If there’s no designer to do the designing then . . . you’re wrong.

    Have you got solid, independent evidence of a there being a designer around . . . when was it? That had the ability to . . . do . . . what was it?

  90. 90
    Jerad says:

    Nice bluff. The theory needs to be in a peer-reviewed journal- Einstein had his in peer-review.

    Rules out ID then eh?

    There are plenty of peer-reviewed papers elucidating evolutionary theory. You know that. Your feigned ignorance is amusing but wearisome.

    Alternative to what? Please be specific.

    I guess you don’t really ’cause you never manage to answer the question. Your questions to me have mostly been answered. Maybe not all by me but they have been answered. You just choose to not read the answers.

    Yes and I have presented it. OTOH your position still has nothing.

    You have a guess but no mechanism or location. That’s not evidence.

    Convergent evolution, duh- and unlike your position it is founded on evidence.

    Then there is common design- which we have experience with.

    We have experience of human intelligence. What else is there? Do you independent evidence?

  91. 91
    kairosfocus says:

    J:

    You are now, unfortunately, recirculating already cogently answered points.

    Let’s see.

    There are dozens of peer reviewed papers on the world of life side of ID, and much more on the cosmological side. Despite the best efforts of the evo mat thought police censors and career killers.

    I should note that tested, found reliable empirical evidence per signs that design is the causal process for an object or entity etc, is evidence that relevant designers were there at the point in time. Just as accelerants, etc at a fire scene are signs of arson as causal process. We may infer onwards form design to designers as we do from arson to arsonists.

    But then, per Lewontin’s cat out the bag remark, your likely real problem is that there is a candidate designer whom at all costs you wish to lock out of consideration. That is a very plausible reason why you seem to think a patent fallacy is a strong talking point.

    FYI, I can be confident of arson on reliable signs thereof without having the slightest further evidence as to whodunit. And it is entirely legitimate for me to focus, for certain purposes, on identifying and evaluating reliable signs of arson.

    The same logic obtains for wider cases of signs of design. (And yes, inference to arson on signs is a case in point of inference to design.)

    Similarly, the notion that humans exhaust the set of actual or possible intelligences is not even sophomoric.

    I suggest you think again.

    KF

    That’s before we note that appeal to peer review is appeal to authority, and too often, politically correct orthodoxy. No authority is better than facts, assumptions and logic, which is what is on the table and which you have been ducking and diverting from.

  92. 92
    Joe says:

    Jerad,

    Your bluffing is duly noted.

    1- Design is a mechanism- buy a dictionary

    2- A Targeted search is a specific mechanism used to design

    3- “built-in responses to environmental cues” is a specific mechanism of design wrt biology (“Not By Chance” Spetner 1997)

    4- Cause and effect relationships- we have observed natural selection but never observed it actually doing something. Differential reproduction just means you have more viable offspring. That doesn’t do anything beyond that.

    5- The evidence for design in biology is independent from the evidence for design in cosmology which is independent from the evidence ofor design in physics and chemistry

    From “The Privileged Planet”:

    “The same narrow circumstances that allow us to exist also provide us with the best over all conditions for making scientific discoveries.”

    “The one place that has observers is the one place that also has perfect solar eclipses.”

    “There is a final, even more bizarre twist. Because of Moon-induced tides, the Moon is gradually receding from Earth at 3.82 centimeters per year. In ten million years will seem noticeably smaller. At the same time, the Sun’s apparent girth has been swelling by six centimeters per year for ages, as is normal in stellar evolution. These two processes, working together, should end total solar eclipses in about 250 million years, a mere 5 percent of the age of the Earth. This relatively small window of opportunity also happens to coincide with the existence of intelligent life. Put another way, the most habitable place in the Solar System yields the best view of solar eclipses just when observers can best appreciate them.”

    And all you have to explain that is “sheer dumb luck”- you don’t have any evidence for your proposed mechanisms producing what we observe. If you had it you would present it.

  93. 93
    Joe says:

    From page 11 of “Why Is A Fly Not A Horse?”:

    There never really has been a scientific “theory” of evolution. “Divergent descent” is an evasive way of stating ancient relationships among living beings, but evolution is about the ways and mechanisms whereby species emerged and differentiated, say, from amoeba to elephant, from baterium to man or, as the current fashion has it, from molecules to man.- Giuseppe Sermonti- retired genetist, ret. professor and ret. editor of a peer-revieweed journal

  94. 94
    Jerad says:

    I should note that tested, found reliable empirical evidence per signs that design is the causal process for an object or entity etc, is evidence that relevant designers were there at the point in time. Just as accelerants, etc at a fire scene are signs of arson as causal process. We may infer onwards form design to designers as we do from arson to arsonists.

    But there is independent evidence that a HUMAN agent was around at the time for your examples. So it’s a fair inference. What intelligent agent was around . . . when was it? And what did they do exactly?

    But then, per Lewontin’s cat out the bag remark, your likely real problem is that there is a candidate designer whom at all costs you wish to lock out of consideration. That is a very plausible reason why you seem to think a patent fallacy is a strong talking point.

    I just want you to provide clear and solid independent evidence that a designer with . . . what abilities was it? . . . was around at . . . what time was it?

    You can’t seem to do that so, I am skeptical.

    Similarly, the notion that humans exhaust the set of actual or possible intelligences is not even sophomoric.

    Perhaps you’d like to be more specific then regarding what kind of designer you are inferring? With what abilities? Do we have evidence of intelligence other than human intelligence with those abilities? If so, what is that evidence?

    You are making an extraordinary claim: that there was an intelligent agent who was capable of . . . well, you haven’t said actually. Nor have you specified when this agent was around. Or what they did exactly. But you seem to want to grant them significant powers of analysis and manufacturing. But you can’t seem to provide any independent evidence that such an agent exists or existed. Nor will you specify what they did or when.

  95. 95
    jhudson says:

    This is rather lengthy conversation to jump into, but I think some clarification is necessary. ID is predicated on certain assumptions about the origination of structures and systems – namely that all systems and structures have 3 possible causes – law, chance and design. I have yet to see someone describe any other possible causes – which means if we eliminate any of the causes, it narrows the possibilities in such a way so that we can positively assert from a scientific perspective what the cause is. We may not be able to describe the mechanism (at this time) but this filter allows us to arrive at some conclusions.

    This is not unlike Pasteur’s now famous experiment demonstrating germ theory. He had two possibilities to consider – spontaneous generation or biogenesis. Now it was not necessary that Pasteur ‘disprove’ spontaneous generation, merely demonstrate that in the cases considered it wasn’t occurring – indeed in no case was it known to occur. The emphasis there is on what is known – one could imagine a case where spontaneous generation occurs, as many scientists claim happened with the origin of life. Pasteur didn’t prove that that it could never happen, merely that it wasn’t happening in cases where one could actually experiment on the process.
    And Pasteur wasn’t at the time able to articulate a detailed description of the mechanisms by which germs propagated (just as Mendel didn’t understand DNA) – but he narrowed the possibilities so that it became obvious that spontaneous generation wasn’t an option.
    In many ways that is where ID is in regard to cases like this one where sophisticated and specific codes occur in separate lineages where they should not. ID suggests based on what is known about codes and information systems that the only known way to originate such sequences is via the plans of a mind. There are no observed situations where information can be developed identically in disparate systems via either chance or any natural laws that we know of. That leaves design, whether or not we know the specific mechanisms that occur in the process. This is the process of elimination Pasteur employed, not a gaps argument. There is not an observed circumstance documented scientifically where disparate identical codes arise independently, and that is what defenders of evolution, like Jerad, need to provide to prove their case.

  96. 96
    Jerad says:

    1- Design is a mechanism- buy a dictionary

    And it happens without an agent? Really?

    2- A Targeted search is a specific mechanism used to design

    Carried out by who? When?

    3- “built-in responses to environmental cues” is a specific mechanism of design wrt biology (“Not By Chance” Spetner 1997)

    4- Cause and effect relationships- we have observed natural selection but never observed it actually doing something. Differential reproduction just means you have more viable offspring. That doesn’t do anything beyond that.

    Uh huh. Cumulative selection affects future generations. It seems pretty clear to me.

    5- The evidence for design in biology is independent from the evidence for design in cosmology which is independent from the evidence ofor design in physics and chemistry

    You are entitled to your opinion. But you have not found independent proof that an intelligent designer existed at . . what time was it? And what did they do exactly?

    Why don’t you state clearly what you think this undefined designer did so we all know what you’re talking about. And then do some work finding the evidence to establish that this designer existed independent of the artefact you’re trying to argue was designed. That’s a reasonable request. You’d probably say the same thing to someone who claimed to have been abducted by aliens. I hear what you’re saying but . . . you’ve got to do a bit more work to establish your case.

    At least you could be more clear about what you’re claiming. When was design implemented? That would be a good start. Can you at least do that?

    And all you have to explain that is “sheer dumb luck”- you don’t have any evidence for your proposed mechanisms producing what we observe. If you had it you would present it.

    The evidence is available in 1000s of research papers and books and talks. The fact that you can’t be bothered to seek it out is not proof that it doesn’t exist. Another argument from ignorance.

    Have you witnessed quantum tunnelling? Do you believe it happens? Have you witnessed continental drift? What about general relativity? We know you don’t grasp the mathematics of infinity because you can’t observe it in your daily life. So . . . if you can’t see it do you not accept it? What sort of inferential reasoning do you accept?

  97. 97
    Jerad says:

    This is rather lengthy conversation to jump into, but I think some clarification is necessary. ID is predicated on certain assumptions about the origination of structures and systems – namely that all systems and structures have 3 possible causes – law, chance and design. I have yet to see someone describe any other possible causes – which means if we eliminate any of the causes, it narrows the possibilities in such a way so that we can positively assert from a scientific perspective what the cause is. We may not be able to describe the mechanism (at this time) but this filter allows us to arrive at some conclusions.

    Do you think natural cause have been convincingly ruled out as ’causes’ behind the development of life on earth? How can you prove that negative?

    In many ways that is where ID is in regard to cases like this one where sophisticated and specific codes occur in separate lineages where they should not. ID suggests based on what is known about codes and information systems that the only known way to originate such sequences is via the plans of a mind. There are no observed situations where information can be developed identically in disparate systems via either chance or any natural laws that we know of. That leaves design, whether or not we know the specific mechanisms that occur in the process. This is the process of elimination Pasteur employed, not a gaps argument. There is not an observed circumstance documented scientifically where disparate identical codes arise independently, and that is what defenders of evolution, like Jerad, need to provide to prove their case.

    “. . . where they should not.” What? You have experience of HUMANS creating complicated information streams. Fine. Were humans around way back . .. when was it again that the designer was supposed to have designed?

    How long did it take for microbiologists to find the agent behind germ theory? Was it even accepted before the agent was discovered and specified? The little critters were observed.

    ID claims that some undefined and unobserved agent implemented design sometime, somewhere, somehow. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

    If you want the rest of us to take you seriously then spell out what you are talking about. Be specific. Present some evidence that’s independent of the phenomena that’s under discussion.

  98. 98
    jhudson says:

    Do you think natural cause have been convincingly ruled out as ’causes’ behind the development of life on earth? How can you prove that negative?

    I can’t – neither could Pasteur. All I can say is we haven’t observed any cases of it, all information systems for which the origin is known result from design, and one could disprove this contention by observably and experimentally demonstrating otherwise. That is as far as any science can go in investigating past events.

    “. . . where they should not.” What? You have experience of HUMANS creating complicated information streams. Fine. Were humans around way back . .. when was it again that the designer was supposed to have designed?

    But what separates us as ‘human’ in cases of the design of specifically complex structures?

    Intelligence.

    If we found hieroglyphics on another planet humans had never been to, we wouldn’t say, “This is impossible, humans have never been here” we would consider that other creatures might share a specific trait with humans – the ability to convey certain levels of information.

    How long did it take for microbiologists to find the agent behind germ theory? Was it even accepted before the agent was discovered and specified? The little critters were observed.

    It was a process of course. A lot of scientists wed to the idea of abiogenesis ignored Pasteur. But so what? That is how science proceeds.

    ID claims that some undefined and unobserved agent implemented design sometime, somewhere, somehow. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

    All that is really important is that we know enough about life to eliminate one or more of the other three possibilities and this sort of finding about the appearance of sequences in disparate mammal lines lends itself to the design column, and away from the chance or law column. It’s that simple.

    If you want the rest of us to take you seriously then spell out what you are talking about. Be specific. Present some evidence that’s independent of the phenomena that’s under discussion.

    Actually the ball is in your court. Either you need to explain via chance and natural law how genes converged in 200 loci in two very disparate mammal linages, or you need to elucidate a cause other than law, chance, or design to explain the phenomena described. I’ll await an explanation superior to the claim that such arrangements occurred as the result of planning and intention.

  99. 99
    sigaba says:

    Either you need to explain via chance and natural law how genes converged in 200 loci in two very disparate mammal linages, or you need to elucidate a cause other than law, chance, or design to explain the phenomena described.

    Selection pressure?

  100. 100
    Upright BiPed says:

    Jerad, would you mind answering your own question:

    “Do you think natural cause have been design has been convincingly ruled out as a ’cause’ behind the development of life on earth?

    From your comments here, it certainly appears that you do. If so, what are the specific details surrounding the unguided mechanism that convinced you? If you don’t mind, I hope you’ll be specific as possible.

    **Please do not respond with “Darwinian Evolution”. That particular mechanism requires (as a demonstrated fact) a semiotic state consisting of recorded information in conjuction with a material organization capable of producing specific effects from that recorded information (i.e. in other words, the entire abiogenesis project is an attempt to induce this state into a system without intelligent input). Darwinian evolution obviously cannot be the source of a system that it requires to exist – unless you’d like to propose that a process that does not yet exist (on a prebiotic earth) can cause something to happen.

    – – – – – – – – –

    Also…

    ID claims that some undefined and unobserved agent implemented design sometime, somewhere, somehow. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

    So let us be clear… if science says “we do not yet know the mechanism of life’s origin, but it was obviously an unguided process” then you are comfortable defending your belief in that mechanism – despite the inescapable fact that you have no material evidence that such a mechanism even exists in reality. Isn’t that correct, Jerad? Are you not forced to assume such a mechanism in order to conclude it?

    And let us continue to be clear… the central reason for your demand to know the designer’s hair color and shoe size is because you know very well that it’s an impossible standard of evidence which no one can ever meet – thereby providing you a convenient fallacy to hide behind while you throw rocks and pretend to dance in the light of science and reason. Is that not correct Jerad? Are you willing to allow yourself a forthright answer to this question, or will you say “No No No, I only believe in things that can be demonstrated”. In other words, will you choose the fallacy or the contradiction, Jerad?

  101. 101
    sigaba says:

    Please do not respond with “Darwinian Evolution”. That particular mechanism requires (as a demonstrated fact) a semiotic state consisting of recorded information

    I’ve seen this argument before and I don’t follow it– how is semiotics related to biology in this way? Semiotics starts with the signer and the sign defined axiomatically, you can’t prove one or the other exists within semiotics, they’re prior to semiotics.

    despite the inescapable fact that you have no material evidence that such a mechanism even exists in reality.

    Are you really saying that we have no material evidence of natural selection, propagation of beneficial traits, and mutation?

  102. 102
    Upright BiPed says:

    Hello sigaba,

    I’ve seen this argument before and I don’t follow it– how is semiotics related to biology in this way? Semiotics starts with the signer and the sign defined axiomatically, you can’t prove one or the other exists within semiotics, they’re prior to semiotics.

    The term “semiosis” was coined in the 1860’s by the American philosopher and logician Charles Sanders Peirce. In its earliest usage, it was generally thought to occupy a single domain. That domain was human culture – the way in which humans communicate and interact with one another. Humans speak in symbolic languages and write books full of symbols (which we call letters and words). Then in the middle part of the 21st century, researchers began to appreciate that other living organisms had their own semiotic reality. For instance, ants produce pheromones which act as signals for the other ants to perceive and respond to. Honey bees returning to the hive will perform a dance in front of the other bees in order to communicate the direction of their feeding grounds. The sounds and gestures of animals throughout the animal world are all signals, symbols, and representations which have meaning. In 1963, Professor Emeritus Thomas Sebeok (Indiana University) proposed zoosemiosis to encompass the observation of semiosis within the larger animal kingdom. Later, the range of observed semiosis was expanded yet again with the observation of semiotic activity at the cellular level among the plant kingdom. This was designated phytosemiosis by German semiotician Martin Krampen in 1981. In short, semiosis is a defining characteristic of the biosphere itself. Even among the lowly bacteria, a lexicon of molecular symbols are exchanged in order to communicate with one another.

    The bottom line is that any form of recorded (transcribed) and translated information (including the genetic information stored in nucleotides within the genome) must have a material substrate and produce material effects – as such, it has material consequences which can be observed. So you have to put away the outdated anthropocentric ideas and view the material requirements which are fundamental to the translation of a medium into an physical effect. Doing so will clear up any ambiguities in the terms, and what you’ll find is a singular set of material conditions which present themselves intact in every single instance of translated information regardless of its source. You‘ll also find a set of material conditions which do not appear in the material record until they first appear as the basis of biological organization. They are the sufficient and necessary material conditions for the translation of recorded information, and represent the rise of the genome on earth.

    Are you really saying that we have no material evidence of natural selection, propagation of beneficial traits, and mutation?

    My comment has nothing to do with natural selection, it precedes it. When Darwinian evolution occurs, it is the recorded information itself which does the evolving, and is then selected for through reproduction and survival. That recorded information cannot exist and be translated without the existence of a semiotic state, and by extension, the unique material conditions required for a semiotic state to occur. Since Darwinian evolution requires those material conditions in order to function, it cannot be the source of those conditions. As stated earlier, to say otherwise is to say that a process which does not yet exist on the pre-biotic earth can cause something to happen. It can’t.

  103. 103
    sigaba says:

    All of this is good, but…

    Since Darwinian evolution requires those material conditions in order to function, it cannot be the source of those conditions.

    Insofar as evolution creates more organisms, and those organisms manifest Darwinian evolution (as we’re using this term), I’d be compelled to disagree on this point. It would follow that insofar as evolution produces viable organisms, it self-sustains the conditions for future evolution. Aside from that it seems fine.

    I’m not sure who exactly claims that the central dogma/neo-Darwinian synthesis is responsible for the initial conditions for evolution. Evolution doesn’t explain the genesis of life on Earth, I don’t think anybody claims otherwise.

    I think the relation with semiotics is unnecessary, it really doesn’t matter the way you’re using it, you’re claim just boils down to “evolution doesn’t explain abiogenesis.” All the information theory stuff is superfluous to this point.

    I know information theory gets used by some authorities to make unrelated points w/r/t Intelligent Design, but I don’t think it’s relevant here.

  104. 104
    Jerad says:

    Actually the ball is in your court. Either you need to explain via chance and natural law how genes converged in 200 loci in two very disparate mammal linages, or you need to elucidate a cause other than law, chance, or design to explain the phenomena described. I’ll await an explanation superior to the claim that such arrangements occurred as the result of planning and intention.

    I agree (to answer another query) that design can never be ‘ruled out’, how can you prove a negative? But if you look at ALL the evidence it is all consistent with an unguided, naturally driven process. The fossil evidence is consistent with a common descent with modification model. The genetic evidence is likewise consistent. As is morphological analysis. And the geographic distribution of life forms. We also have at least 2000 years of observations which show that genetic variation is great enough to generate wide morphological differences.

    Science prefers models and explanations that invoke the fewest possible causes. Especially those which have no independent evidence to support them.

    You can say that all that evidence is also consistent with design. But what isn’t consistent with design? It’s always possible to say: well, we can’t know the motivations of the designer. But that explains nothing.

    Do some work and find something that cannot be explained by natural processes. Don’t just point at gaps, gaps are not proof something didn’t happen.

    And gaps in scientific knowledge have a habit of getting smaller and smaller.

    At this point universal common descent with modification via undirected natural processes is the best and most parsimonious model. It is consistent with the known data, it has predictive power and it explains the data.

    So let us be clear… if science says “we do not yet know the mechanism of life’s origin, but it was obviously an unguided process” then you are comfortable defending your belief in that mechanism – despite the inescapable fact that you have no material evidence that such a mechanism even exists in reality. Isn’t that correct, Jerad? Are you not forced to assume such a mechanism in order to conclude it?

    That’s not what evolutionary theory says. And we do have evidence even if you choose to disregard it.

    And let us continue to be clear… the central reason for your demand to know the designer’s hair color and shoe size is because you know very well that it’s an impossible standard of evidence which no one can ever meet – thereby providing you a convenient fallacy to hide behind while you throw rocks and pretend to dance in the light of science and reason. Is that not correct Jerad? Are you willing to allow yourself a forthright answer to this question, or will you say “No No No, I only believe in things that can be demonstrated”. In other words, will you choose the fallacy or the contradiction, Jerad?

    I did not ask for that kind of detail and you know it. I asked for, at least, some statement regarding WHEN design was implemented. How would be interesting of course. Why would add some explanatory power.

    It’s quite common for people on this forum to ask evolutionary theory to answer questions it can’t possibly answer. Why don’t you call them on that?

  105. 105
    Upright BiPed says:

    Hello again sigaba,

    All of this is good, but…

    Since Darwinian evolution requires those material conditions in order to function, it cannot be the source of those conditions.

    Insofar as evolution creates more organisms, and those organisms manifest Darwinian evolution (as we’re using this term), I’d be compelled to disagree on this point. It would follow that insofar as evolution produces viable organisms, it self-sustains the conditions for future evolution. Aside from that it seems fine.

    Darwinian evolution does not create organisms. Only the translation of recorded information creates organisms, requiring a unique set of material conditions which are found nowhere else in the physical world (except in any other instance of information translation). Darwinian evolution requires these material conditions to exist in order to exist itself. It therefore cannot be the mechanism behind the rise of those conditions. It’s actually very straightforward; Darwinian evolution requires the translation of recorded information in order to function; the translation of recorded information requires a set of unique material conditions; the rise of those conditions must be satisfied prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution.

    Evolution doesn’t explain the genesis of life on Earth, I don’t think anybody claims otherwise.

    Upthread, I mentioned to Jerad that while he chided ID proponents for not having evidence to back up a claim they do not make, he himself had no evidence for an unguided mechanism to satisfy the material conditions that Darwinian evolution requires to exist (which relates to a claim that ID proponents actually do make).

    You then entered the conversation and asked “Are you really saying that we have no material evidence of natural selection, propagation of beneficial traits, and mutation?”.

    Of course, each of these items you give in your response (selection, propagation of traits, and mutation) is indelibly tied to Darwinian evolution, conflating the functions of evolution with the onset of the material conditions required to translate recorded information. If that was merely a misplaced comment, then I can certainly accept that. You might be surprised at the number of times ID critics conflate the two.

    I think the relation with semiotics is unnecessary

    I disagree. Frankly, I am not certain how understanding the material conditions required for the onset of Darwinian evolution could possibly be unnecessary in understanding the onset of Darwinian evolution.

    you’re claim just boils down to “evolution doesn’t explain abiogenesis.” All the information theory stuff is superfluous to this point.

    Again I profoundly disagree. The translation of recorded information organizes biological function. It would be hard to imagine how it could be more relevant.

    I know information theory gets used by some authorities to make unrelated points w/r/t Intelligent Design, but I don’t think it’s relevant here.

    One needn’t be an authority to recognize the extreme relevance. The entire edifice of evolutionary biology is based on it. You are welcome to carry a descending opinion, but you must understand your opinion is vastly outside the reality on the ground. Again, it cannot be unimportant to understand the material conditions required to translate recorded information if the system you are interested in understanding requires the translation of recorded information. This should be obvious, It is, of course, unfortunate when it is not.

  106. 106
    Alan Fox says:

    My comment has nothing to do with natural selection, it precedes it.

    For those considering engaging with the commenter, Upright Biped and his semiotic argument, it might be worth noting that the argument is an attempt at demonstrating the “impossibility” of an unguided origin of life on Earth. So, as nobody yet has an evidence based theory to explain an unguided OOL, it might prove fruitless.

    For those that may be unaware of US’s argument and its reception and consideration previously, some time may be saved by googling or see here for a start. Here too

  107. 107
    Upright BiPed says:

    Jerad,

    That’s not what evolutionary theory says. And we do have evidence even if you choose to disregard it

    If you’d like, we can split hairs and say that evolutionary theory doesn’t say that the mechanism of life’s origin was an unguided event in chemical history, but evolutionary biology, as practiced, taught, written about, defended, and promoted by evolutionary biologists, very much says exactly that – with no evidence to demonstrate such a mechanism even exists.

    As far as disregarding evidence, there is no evidence anywhere on the surface of the planet for a mechanism demonstrating the rise of a semiotc system from inanimate matter. Consequently there is none to ignore. If you find this to be untrue, then by all means, present the evidence.

    I did not ask for that kind of detail and you know it. I asked for, at least, some statement regarding WHEN design was implemented. How would be interesting of course. Why would add some explanatory power.

    Jerad, as a defensive strategy, you place an impossible standard on ID evidence while accepting and defending a mechanism of life’s origin for which you have no evidence whatsoever that it exist in reality. Both halves of that statement are on record in this very thread.

  108. 108
    Upright BiPed says:

    Alan,

    You are welcome to articulate what material observations are inaccurate, or where the conclusion does not follow from the premises. Are those not the standards you would adhere to?

    On a personal front; does character assassination, bluff, and innuendo ever become tiresome to you?

  109. 109
    Upright BiPed says:

    Here you go Alan, have at it:

    In a material universe, it is not possible to transfer any form of recorded information into a material effect without using an arrangement of matter (or energy) as an information-bearing medium. If that is true, then other material necessities must follow. Firstly, such a medium must evoke an effect within a system capable of producing that effect. Universal observation and logical necessity demonstrate this to be true. Secondly, if a medium contains information as a consequence of its arrangement, then that arrangement must be physically arbitrary to the effect it evokes. Again, universal observation and logical necessity demonstrate this to be true. And thirdly, if an arrangement of matter requires a system to produce an effect, and if that arrangement is arbitrary to the effect it evokes, then the system itself must contain a second arrangement of matter to establish the otherwise non-existent relationship between the arrangement of the medium and its effect. Once again, universal observation and logical necessity demonstrate this to be true. If each of these things are true, then in order to translate any form of recorded information, the process fundamentally requires two arrangements of matter operating as an irreducible core within the system. And because Darwinian evolution requires the transfer and translation of recorded information in order to exist itself, it cannot be the source of this system. Given these observations, a mechanism capable of establishing this semiotic state is necessary prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution and information-based organization.

  110. 110
    Joe says:


    1- Design is a mechanism- buy a dictionary

    And it happens without an agent?

    Not to our knowledge.


    2- A Targeted search is a specific mechanism used to design

    Carried out by who? When?

    Please tell me why we have to know that BEFORE determining design- or admit that you are scientifically ignorant.

    3- “built-in responses to environmental cues” is a specific mechanism of design wrt biology (“Not By Chance” Spetner 1997)

    4- Cause and effect relationships- we have observed natural selection but never observed it actually doing something. Differential reproduction just means you have more viable offspring. That doesn’t do anything beyond that.

    Uh huh. Cumulative selection affects future generations. It seems pretty clear to me.

    Cumulative selection is another design mechanism.


    5- The evidence for design in biology is independent from the evidence for design in cosmology which is independent from the evidence ofor design in physics and chemistry

    You are entitled to your opinion.

    It’s a fact, not opinion.


    And all you have to explain that is “sheer dumb luck”- you don’t have any evidence for your proposed mechanisms producing what we observe. If you had it you would present it.

    The evidence is available in 1000s of research papers and books and talks.

    And yet you cannot link to any- you are lying.

    We know you don’t grasp the mathematics of infinity because you can’t observe it in your daily life.

    Now you are proving that you are a liar. I grasp the mathematics of infinity. It’s just that infinity does NOT exist outside of our minds! We made it up.

  111. 111
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    But if you look at ALL the evidence it is all consistent with an unguided, naturally driven process.

    Perhaps to your bitty mind, yet it is very telling that you cannot even produce a testable hypothesis for it.

  112. 112
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    I asked for, at least, some statement regarding WHEN design was implemented. How would be interesting of course. Why would add some explanatory power.

    Jerad, you obviously do not understand science. How are we supposed to answer those questions BEFORE determining design is present? And if we don’t have to know those answers BEFORE determining design then what exactly is your mental issue?

    Ya see Jerad, reality dictates that in the absence of direct observation or designer input the only possible way to make any scientific determination as to the who, how, when, where and how is by studying the design and all relevant evidence- just ask your alleged archaeologist of a wife.

  113. 113
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    ID claims that some undefined and unobserved agent implemented design sometime, somewhere, somehow.

    Evolutionism (unguided evolution) claims that some undefined and unobserved mutations occurred sometime, somewhere, somehow and caused undefined morphological changes. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

  114. 114
    Joe says:

    Here Jerad, choke on this:

    Yes, Intelligent Design is both testable and falsifiable. Intelligent Design relies on Newton’s First Rule, meaning agencies are only added when REQUIRED. Therefor to refute ID and any given design inference all one has to do is step up and demonstrate that blind and undirected processes can account for it. IOW all evos have to do to stop ID cold is to actually step up and A) produce a tyestable hypothesis for their position and B) produce positive, supporting evidence.

    However all evos can do is cry foul and say “blind, undirected processes is a strawman!”- yet it is a given that natural selection, genetic drift and HGT are all blind, purposeless processes and all mutations are undirected-> that is given the current theory of evolution. IOW evos are so clueless they don’t even understand the theory they try to defend!

    So there you have it ole evos- just start supporting your position and ID will go away.

    How is ID tested? As in positive evidence?

    1- See above as the way to the design inference is THROUGH the blind watchmaker

    2- The criteria for inferring design in biology is, as Michael J. Behe, Professor of Biochemistry at Leheigh University, puts it in his book Darwin ‘ s Black Box: “Our ability to be confident of the design of the cilium or intracellular transport rests on the same principles to be confident of the design of anything: the ordering of separate components to achieve an identifiable function that depends sharply on the components.”

    So if nature, operating freely cannot account for it AND it meets that criteria, some agency is required and we infer design (or at least agency involvement).

    The prediction is Jerad won’t understand any of that because he is scientifically illiterate.

    Don’t fret Jerad, Alan Fox choked on it too.

  115. 115
    Jerad says:

    As far as disregarding evidence, there is no evidence anywhere on the surface of the planet for a mechanism demonstrating the rise of a semiotc system from inanimate matter. Consequently there is none to ignore. If you find this to be untrue, then by all means, present the evidence.

    Without evidence of some outside ’cause’ then I’d say there’s good evidence that unguided natural processes created the fossil record, the bio-geographic distribution, the variation in morphology and the various genomes that we can examine.

    Jerad, as a defensive strategy, you place an impossible standard on ID evidence while accepting and defending a mechanism of life’s origin for which you have no evidence whatsoever that it exist in reality. Both halves of that statement are on record in this very thread.

    Just you saying there is no evidence supporting unguided common descent by modification doesn’t make it so.

    As I said: pick the model that requires the least number of assumptions or special pleading that explains all the data.

  116. 116
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    Just you saying there is no evidence supporting unguided common descent by modification doesn’t make it so.

    If such evidence existed someone would present it. Yet no one ever has.

    As I said: pick the model that requires the least number of assumptions or special pleading that explains all the data.

    Your position requires the most special pleading and the most assumptions.

  117. 117
    Jerad says:

    Please tell me why we have to know that BEFORE determining design- or admit that you are scientifically ignorant.

    Because there is another, more plausible, explanation available which does not entail assuming an intelligent designer for which there is no independent evidence.

    Cumulative selection is another design mechanism.

    Even unguided cumulative selection?

    And yet you cannot link to any- you are lying.

    I find it amusing that you deny such things exist when they’re easy to find. You just make yourself look lazy and ignorant.

    Now you are proving that you are a liar. I grasp the mathematics of infinity. It’s just that infinity does NOT exist outside of our minds! We made it up.

    Uh huh.

    Perhaps to your bitty mind, yet it is very telling that you cannot even produce a testable hypothesis for it.

    Funny, if I used that kind of language to refer to another commenter I’d probably be told off for doing so.

    And again: if you’re interested, go look. If you’re going to attack a widely accepted and verified scientific model then it’s up to you to do the work to find out what it is saying.

    Jerad, you obviously do not understand science. How are we supposed to answer those questions BEFORE determining design is present? And if we don’t have to know those answers BEFORE determining design then what exactly is your mental issue?

    Well, pardon me. I’ve been told over and over and over again in this forum that design HAD been detected. You guys should get your story straight.

    And if it hasn’t been detected then there’s nothing to discuss.

    Ya see Jerad, reality dictates that in the absence of direct observation or designer input the only possible way to make any scientific determination as to the who, how, when, where and how is by studying the design and all relevant evidence- just ask your alleged archaeologist of a wife.

    Nice little bit of character assassination there. Sounds like you’re agreeing with me that there is no other evidence. And sounds like you’re saying design has not been detected. I guess that’s the end of it then.

    Evolutionism (unguided evolution) claims that some undefined and unobserved mutations occurred sometime, somewhere, somehow and caused undefined morphological changes. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

    We know that mutations exist. We know that mutations can change morphology. Recently we’ve learned to monitor populations and point to particular mutations having occurred that trigger particular new traits.

    Funnily enough, Darwin got it pretty much right without that evidence. I guess the fossil record, the bio-geographic species distribution and morphology are also helping to prove the case that unguided universal common descent with modification ‘did it’.

    Yes, Intelligent Design is both testable and falsifiable. Intelligent Design relies on Newton’s First Rule, meaning agencies are only added when REQUIRED.

    Exactly my point. We don’t need to plead for an undetected, undefined intelligent designer when existing, known, unguided natural processes seem quite capable of doing the job. And at the very least have not been proven incapable.

    Therefor to refute ID and any given design inference all one has to do is step up and demonstrate that blind and undirected processes can account for it. IOW all evos have to do to stop ID cold is to actually step up and A) produce a tyestable hypothesis for their position and B) produce positive, supporting evidence.

    I don’t have to refute ID since it’s not the default assumption. And besides, you said design hasn’t been detected so . . . what’s there to refute?

    The criteria for inferring design in biology is, as Michael J. Behe, Professor of Biochemistry at Leheigh University, puts it in his book Darwin ‘ s Black Box: “Our ability to be confident of the design of the cilium or intracellular transport rests on the same principles to be confident of the design of anything: the ordering of separate components to achieve an identifiable function that depends sharply on the components.”

    Looks like he was probably wrong about the cilium. Oh well, better keep looking eh? ‘Cause you did imply that design had not been detected yet.

    So if nature, operating freely cannot account for it AND it meets that criteria, some agency is required and we infer design (or at least agency involvement).

    It hasn’t been proven that unguided natural processes aren’t up to the job.

    The prediction is Jerad won’t understand any of that because he is scientifically illiterate.

    Interesting that your level of discourse is tolerated by UD’s moderators. Do yo think they let me get away with using similar slanderous statements?

  118. 118
    Jerad says:

    If such evidence existed someone would present it. Yet no one ever has.

    Or you’re denying it exists

    Your position requires the most special pleading and the most assumptions.

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahha You are funny.

  119. 119
    Joe says:


    If such evidence existed someone would present it. Yet no one ever has.

    Or you’re denying it exists

    Or you are just a bluffing loser.


    Your position requires the most special pleading and the most assumptions.

    hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahha You are funny.

    Yes, the truth is often funny

  120. 120
    Jerad says:

    Or you are just a bluffing loser.

    Another insult? Charming.

  121. 121
    Jerad says:

    Joe (comment 112)

    Jerad, you obviously do not understand science. How are we supposed to answer those questions BEFORE determining design is present? And if we don’t have to know those answers BEFORE determining design then what exactly is your mental issue?

    Joe doesn’t think design has been detected. I guess we can all go home now.

  122. 122
    Joe says:


    Please tell me why we have to know that BEFORE determining design- or admit that you are scientifically ignorant.

    Because there is another, more plausible, explanation available which does not entail assuming an intelligent designer for which there is no independent evidence.

    LoL! That doesn’t even answer the question. And your bald assertion is meaningless.

    Even unguided cumulative selection?

    Prove it exists.

    I find it amusing that you deny such things exist when they’re easy to find.

    You are a bluffer and a liar.

    If you’re going to attack a widely accepted and verified scientific model then it’s up to you to do the work to find out what it is saying.

    Jerad you are an ass- I have looked. You are also lying, as usual.


    Jerad, you obviously do not understand science. How are we supposed to answer those questions BEFORE determining design is present? And if we don’t have to know those answers BEFORE determining design then what exactly is your mental issue?

    Well, pardon me. I’ve been told over and over and over again in this forum that design HAD been detected.

    Another non-reponse. Yes design has been detected. That has nothing to do with what I said.

    It’s as if you are proud of your stupidity.

    We don’t need to plead for an undetected, undefined intelligent designer when existing, known, unguided natural processes seem quite capable of doing the job.

    They do not seem capable of producing what we observe. You are a liar.

    Looks like he was probably wrong about the cilium.

    There isn’t any evidence that accumuylations of genetic accidents can produce proteins, let alone multi-protein configs.

    Just because you accept hearsay and speculation as science that doesn’t mean the rest of us have to be so gullible.

    And if you stopped lying and started presenting some actual evidence, my tone would change. However when all you do is lie and deflect then I will respond accordingly.

  123. 123
    Joe says:


    Jerad, you obviously do not understand science. How are we supposed to answer those questions BEFORE determining design is present? And if we don’t have to know those answers BEFORE determining design then what exactly is your mental issue?

    Jerad:

    Joe doesn’t think design has been detected
    .

    That doesn’t follow from what I said. So either you are confused or dishonest.

  124. 124
    Joe says:


    Evolutionism (unguided evolution) claims that some undefined and unobserved mutations occurred sometime, somewhere, somehow and caused undefined morphological changes. That’s a scientific theory? Really?

    We know that mutations exist.

    You have no idea if they are all random or not. The evidence says they are not all random, just ask James Shapiro.

    Also there isn’t any supporting data for mutations being capable of producing what we observe.

    We know that mutations can change morphology.

    Changing what exists does not account for the origin of the body plan being changed. Also ID is OK with change, so is YEC.

    Recently we’ve learned to monitor populations and point to particular mutations having occurred that trigger particular new traits.

    Changing eye color does not account for the eye. Nor does it account for the organism.

    Look, no one even knows what makes an organism what it is. Giuseppe Sermonti- a geneticist- has laid down the challenge and to date no one can answer him.

  125. 125
    Joe says:


    It’s just that infinity does NOT exist outside of our minds! We made it up.

    Uh huh.

    Is that the extent of your childishness? Was that supposed to somehow refute what I said?

    Even wikipedia calls infinity an abstract concept…

  126. 126
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    Occam’s razor is not an excuse to ignore evidence, as there is a world of difference between being simple while coherently addressing the facts in evidence and being simplistic while suppressing or ignoring material but inconvenient facts.

    In this case:

    1 –> FSCO/I is real, as posts in this thread and D/RNA both exemplify, as well as the PC you are reading this on.

    2 –> By its nature we are looking at multiple well matched correctly configured parts leading to function depending on such organisation. In our massive experience, a sentence like this does not come about by any random distribution of blobs of colour, or even by random arrangements of correct symbols.

    3 –> This specificity to achieve function joined to sufficient complexity means, rarity in the space of possible configs, thus a beyond astronomical search challenge for blind chance and mechanical necessity. That is what the picture-phrase “islands of function (in a vast sea of non function)” is about.

    4 –> There are billions of observed cases of origin of FSCO/I and they reliably trace to design, which we — for excellent reason — habitually associate with purposeful acts of skilled intelligence. (And, BTW, FYI, beavers show themselves capable of intelligent design, albeit in a rather limited context.)

    5 –> From both these factors [in 3 and 4], we see that FSCO/I is a reliable, empirically grounded sign of design as cause. Notice, direct induction on a mass of positive evidence, backed by implied analysis on the challenge of blind search on solar system or observed cosmos scale resources.

    6 –> In addition, we have NEVER observed origin of FSCO/I by blind chance and necessity, not even in “easy” cases like random text generation. So far we have seen some 24 ASCII characters in English [a space of about 10^50 configs], the 500 bit threshold asks for about 72, a space 10^100 times that, 10^150 possibilities. (This is easily understood on the search challenge problem.)

    7 –> From such, as is a commonplace, we can infer from FSCO/I to design as cause and thence to the credible presence of a capable designer. As, the arson example already mentioned shows.

    8 –> To object to this, you are starting by trying to reverse the chain of inference, and imagining that hostility to a consequential inference, is enough to dismiss the chain of warrant that leads there. It is entirely legitimate to examine traces of the unobserved past, ask what can make such, test and see that there are characteristic sources, then infer on signs from result to reliable cause. That is the opposite of your pretence that one assumes the end to get to the beginning. That’s strawman, switcheroo rhetorical tactics, here joined to quite evident subtexts of disrespect and contempt. The proper thing to do would be to fairly represent and respond to what you are addressing, not insist on strawman distortions.

    9 –> Further, you seem to want to dismiss a priori the possibility of a designer of life and of cosmos; your huffing and puffing on human designers is just a disguised way to do so. No serious thinker would confine the functional concept, intelligence, to being a member of our species. And yet you try to argue as if that were so. That’s bias and strawman tactics. If we found a written monolith on Mars, we would not say, impossible as no humans were here to do it. No, there would be scare headlines that on the strength of a known artifact of intelligence, someone else was there before us — an inference to design. Well, in the living cell, we have digital coded info, and we have algorithms. That’s not a rabbit in the Cambrian, it is a signature in all of life! And we have known this since the early 1950’s, sixty years this year. In case you want to dismiss me, here is Crick, writing to his son, March 19th, 1953:

    Now we believe that the DNA is a code. That is, the order of bases (the letters) makes one gene different from another gene (just as one page of print is different from another)

    10 –> Also, you exaggerate the actual empirical evidence out there for your preferred view. There simply is no empirical demonstration of the capability of known blind chem and phys giving rise to a cell based living form exhibiting copious FSCO/I in metabolic systems, coded info, algorithms and execution machines.

    11 –> Similarly, there is no observational evidence of incremental blind chance variations of life forms, culled by differential reproductive success being able to create novel body plans requiring 10 – 100 mn + bits of additional info, each time, for dozens of times.

    12 –> If you doubt me on these claims, simply list the Nobel or comparable prizes awarded, and for what specifically.

    The prizes simply don’t exist (just ask Prigogine, who was widely promoted end of the 70’s as though he had delivered the goods).

    KF

  127. 127
    Upright BiPed says:

    UB: As far as disregarding evidence, there is no evidence anywhere on the surface of the planet for a mechanism demonstrating the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter. Consequently there is none to ignore. If you find this to be untrue, then by all means, present the evidence.

    Jerad: Without evidence of some outside ’cause’ then I’d say there’s good evidence that unguided natural processes created the fossil record, the bio-geographic distribution, the variation in morphology and the various genomes that we can examine.

    You didn’t address the issue. There is no evidence whatsoever of a semiotic system arising from inanimate matter, yet a semiotic state is fundamentally required for Darwinian evolution to occur. It simply cannot function without it. So when you suggest I ignore evidence, you are being deceptive because there is no evidence for me to ignore. I clearly asked you to present such evidence of you believed this to be untrue, and you answered that request by reverting back to the evidence of evolution. This demonstrates a lack of reason on your part, for which I am unable to do anything about.

    UB: Jerad, as a defensive strategy, you place an impossible standard on ID evidence while accepting and defending a mechanism of life’s origin for which you have no evidence whatsoever that it exist in reality. Both halves of that statement are on record in this very thread.

    Jerad: Just you saying there is no evidence supporting unguided common descent by modification doesn’t make it so.

    I am not certain how your response relates to the statement of mine you quoted. It doesn’t seem to relate at all. My comment drew attention to an issue within your position. On the one hand, you hide behind a fallacious standard of evidence that no person can meet regarding any historical event whatsoever (such as the origin of life). And on the other hand, you sustain a contradiction in your reasoning by accepting (as a fact) a mechanism of origins for which you have no direct evidence that it even exists, while at the same time you deny the artifacts of design because you have no direct evidence that a designing agent exists.

    Since you do not want to comment on that issue, I will respond to the comment you did make. To that end, there isn’t a single instance on this thread where I have suggested there is “no evidence” for common descent. I have no reason to deny common descent, nor do I have any inexorable reason to accept it. It simply is not a determinant issue on my view, and it does nothing whatsoever to alter the argument I‘ve presented. So once again, when you make these statements about me, you are simply being deceptive. It would appear (where you are concerned) that I really needn’t even be present in this conversation for my words to be misrepresented.

    Given this, I think it’s time to cut to the chase. You have absolutely no intentions whatsoever of acknowledging any artifact of design found in nature, regardless of the type or quality of that artifact. And if something is presented to you that the mechanism of Darwinian evolution could not have possibly created, you can then defend your position by demanding an impossible standard of evidence far beyond anything you would apply to your own position. In other words, you have deliberately insulated yourself from any contradictory evidence. And since I am not even needed for that type of exchange, I will deplane the conversation and leave you the last word.

    Cheers

  128. 128
    sigaba says:

    For those considering engaging with the commenter, Upright Biped and his semiotic argument, it might be worth noting that the argument is an attempt at demonstrating the “impossibility” of an unguided origin of life on Earth. So, as nobody yet has an evidence based theory to explain an unguided OOL, it might prove fruitless.

    Oh yeah I remember this guy. I’m sorry UB but I think it’s all sophistry, even if it’s logically consistent it’s not empirically falsifiable. I’d advise stop wasting your time commenting here and write a book.

  129. 129
    jhudson says:

    I agree (to answer another query) that design can never be ‘ruled out’, how can you prove a negative? But if you look at ALL the evidence it is all consistent with an unguided, naturally driven process. The fossil evidence is consistent with a common descent with modification model. The genetic evidence is likewise consistent. As is morphological analysis. And the geographic distribution of life forms. We also have at least 2000 years of observations which show that genetic variation is great enough to generate wide morphological differences.

    Science doesn’t try to prove a negative. I am not trying to prove a negative. I simply pointed out that this piece of evidence is consistent with what we would expect if the genome was designed. You made references to lots of other phenomena that you think are explained by natural processes, and I have no particular reason to dispute those, because none of them have anything to do with this process. The ball is still in your court.

    Science prefers models and explanations that invoke the fewest possible causes. Especially those which have no independent evidence to support them.

    Sure – but those explanations actually have to account for the phenomena in question. And coded information replicated in independent lineages is not explained by any cause other than the actions of an intelligent agent.

    You can say that all that evidence is also consistent with design. But what isn’t consistent with design? It’s always possible to say: well, we can’t know the motivations of the designer. But that explains nothing.

    It’s not only that it is ‘consistent with design’ it’s that chance and natural law don’t explain the phenomena at all. That only leaves design as a possibility.

    Do some work and find something that cannot be explained by natural processes. Don’t just point at gaps, gaps are not proof something didn’t happen.

    Given the fact that you have yet to present a single naturalistic explanation for this particular phenomenon, I don’t think it’s me that has work to do. Telling others you don’t know that they don’t understand something when you can’t yourself explain it is no argument.

    And gaps in scientific knowledge have a habit of getting smaller and smaller.

    This is actually sort of a myth. Sure, we have many explanations for things today when didn’t have previously, but we also have many mysteries today we didn’t have because of our lack of knowledge previously. We are only recently mapping genomes and making discoveries such as these – discoveries which undermine traditional evolutionary thinking.

    At this point universal common descent with modification via undirected natural processes is the best and most parsimonious model. It is consistent with the known data, it has predictive power and it explains the data.

    And it fails utterly to explain the finding we are discussing, a point you keep avoiding.

  130. 130
    kairosfocus says:

    UB: It is actually a case of trying to block the force of valid evidence that is there before us all by saying, let us use selective hyperskeptical objections that we would not otherwise make to inductive evidence, and make unreasonable demands. KF

  131. 131
    Upright BiPed says:

    sigaba,

    A claim against the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter is immediately falsifiable by a demonstration of the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter – or was that not already obvious?

    On the other hand, how would you falsify a claim that a semiotic system arose from inanimate matter if that claim is forever made in debate, but never put to a test?

    It would seem (per rational observation) that the first claim is immediately falsifiable through experiment, while the second is ultimately non-falsifiable by any means whatsoever.

    Do you disagree? If so, then describe your reasoning.

  132. 132
    Upright BiPed says:

    sigaba,

    If you choose not to substantiate your last comment, I will certainly understand, and will accept your sudden departure as par for the course.

  133. 133
    sigaba says:

    A claim against the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter is immediately falsifiable by a demonstration of the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter – or was that not already obvious?

    I’m not sure your definition of a semiotic system is particularly rigorous, it’s significantly different from the philosophical one in that you seem to state that a signer and a signed can be molecules, when the social science definition requires them to be thinking agents. I don’t think you can generalize the concept of a “sign” in this way. I mean your argument has a very thorough account of how information is reified in matter, but that doesn’t get you to a “sign,” which has semantic meaning independent of itself or any mapping or translation.

    That’s a big issue — DNA can be translated a dozen ways into different media, producing different molecules, but at no time does it become a collection of “signs,” significant meaning is something that exists outside of language.

    (Again I think your information theory stuff is completely beside the point, and probably is an atavism from previous versions of your argument, when you incorporated more CSI-conservation language.)

    Also you’ve introduced a new term here, “inanimate matter,” which I don’t quite see — you need a clear distinction between living and nonliving. Why don’t you just say “evolving matter,” that still makes your argument consistent and saves you from having to define animacy.

  134. 134
    sigaba says:

    If you choose not to substantiate your last comment, I will certainly understand, and will accept your sudden departure as par for the course.

    Again I think you should write a book, I’d buy it. Maybe we can start a Kickstarter page for you.

  135. 135
    LarTanner says:

    UBP @131,

    The specific “semiotic system” you reference: to whom/what exactly is it a semiotic system?

  136. 136
    sigaba says:

    The specific “semiotic system” you reference: to whom/what exactly is it a semiotic system?

    I think it’s his position that his definition is the criteria for an objectively semiotic system.

  137. 137
    Joe says:

    Look guys- LarTanner and sigaba- DNA codons represent amino acids, they do not become amino acids via some chemical reaction. That the codons represent amino acids means the codons are symbols in the process.

    And it bothers you that unguided proceses cannot account for that. We get that.

  138. 138
    Upright BiPed says:

    Sigaba,

    I’m not sure your definition of a semiotic system is particularly rigorous

    Every element in my argument is described at the material level, without anthropocentric ambiguity.

    it’s significantly different from the philosophical one in that you seem to state that a signer and a signed can be molecules

    There is no sign in existence that is not embedded in a material medium of some kind, regardless of its origin.

    when the social science definition requires them to be thinking agents.

    That view is over half a century old and serves no purpose in science. The entirety of the semiological community has moved on, based on rational observation.

    I mean your argument has a very thorough account of how information is reified in matter

    Reified? Information requires a medium. If you cannot demonstrate an instance of information without a medium, then your words are rather inconsistent with reality.

    but that doesn’t get you to a “sign,” which has semantic meaning independent of itself or any mapping or translation.

    Describe a sign that does not have a mapping or does not require translation.

    That’s a big issue — DNA can be translated a dozen ways into different media, producing different molecules, but at no time does it become a collection of “signs”

    Describe how a set of nucleotides can specify something in translation, without representing that something to a system capable of producing it.

    I think your information theory stuff is completely beside the point, and probably is an atavism from previous versions of your argument, when you incorporated more CSI-conservation language

    Who even knows what this means? It seems to have come from a grab bag. My argument has never been about the measurement of content.

    Also you’ve introduced a new term here, “inanimate matter,” which I don’t quite see — you need a clear distinction between living and nonliving.

    A rational observer hardly has a problem with such concepts. A quick search of Google Scholar produces roughly 100,000 references to papers from across the physical sciences spectrum. Apparently, people are able to communicate with such terms. Frankly, this again seems like another pull from the grab bag.

  139. 139
    Upright BiPed says:

    sigaba, do you plan on responding to my post at 131 ?

  140. 140
    sigaba says:

    DNA codons represent amino acids, they do not become amino acids via some chemical reaction. That the codons represent amino acids means the codons are symbols in the process.

    I’m not sure there’s a difference between representing and becoming in this instance. A lot of physical processes The magnetic field of the earth shifts occasionally, and these changes are recorded in bands on oceanic ridges, but neither the Earth nor the magnetic field “become” the bands, and we don’t say that the alternating bands are “symbols.” We can say that the bands “represent” the magnetic field at such-and-such an epoch.

    We can add the qualification that such recordings don’t qualify as semiotic in this sense, unless they act on further phenomena. Would you like to do that?

    And it bothers you that unguided proceses cannot account for that.

    We haven’t even gotten there yet, I’m still stuck on this whole “semiotic” formalism…

  141. 141
    LarTanner says:

    Sigba @136,

    I think it’s his position that his definition is the criteria for an objectively semiotic system.

    That cannot be because by definition a semiotic system requires a decoding mechanism, someone or something to assign a specific value to the material signal or inscription.

    So it makes no sense to call something a semiotic system and not identify who or what performs (or could perform) the decoding. Same thing at the encoding end.

  142. 142
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry, may I offer you something, then ask you a question?

    The general etymology of the word “information” suggests that information gives “form” to a subject of interest. This definition originates from Greek precursors, and leads to the Latin verb informare; to “in-form”. This is the standard description that virtually all people would recognize in common use. Information informs us of (or gives form to) the things we speak, write, and think about. When we say “the sky is blue” we are giving form to our perception of the sky – it’s blue. Likewise, the recipe for an apple pie gives form to the way in which an apple pie is made, just as the code that passes through our computers gives form to the programs we run. This is a purely anthropocentric view of information, but it is no stretch to also recognize that other living things have their own methods of communicating form. The ant’s pheromones give form to the coordinated response of the other ants (i.e. they attack, they follow, they gather food, etc). In the same way, the bee’s dance gives form to the response of the other bees (i.e. they fly off in the right direction to their feeding grounds). From direct observation of the living world, information gives form to the various effects it evokes within the systems where we find it.

    Here is the question: From a purely material perspective (i.e. without regard to its source) what do you think “information” is?

  143. 143
    sigaba says:

    sigaba, do you plan on responding to my post at 131 ?

    I did at 133, to which you responded.

    Let me restate how I understand this: My gloss of your argument is that if something is translated, it necessarily is a sign; signs have meaning; certain organic molecules are translated, thus these organic molecules have meaning; meaning cannot exist with prior context, thus these organic molecules could not create themselves?

  144. 144
    LarTanner says:

    UBP @40, How is the etymology of the word ‘information’ of use for the technical sense in which we want to use the term?

    But to answer your question very broadly, I would would say information is the result of material in motion and/or interacting.

    Regardless of my definition, I wonder what your response is to my earlier point, “by definition a semiotic system requires a decoding mechanism, someone or something to assign a specific value to the material signal or inscription.”

    After all, the term under discussion is “semiotic system,” not “information.” Right?

  145. 145
    sigaba says:

    That cannot be because by definition a semiotic system requires a decoding mechanism, someone or something to assign a specific value to the material signal or inscription.

    Right, that’s basically my position, but he seems convinced he has an objective (or as he’d say, “rational”) justification.

    His program seems to be about using a physical properties of a system to decide if it uses signs or not. If he can prove it does, then he believes he can use certain assumptions from more humanistic semiotic disciplines to prove his point.

  146. 146
    Upright BiPed says:

    sigaba at 143

    My comment in #131 is not strictly about acceptance of the semiotic argument, and even if it was, at this point it does not matter. The simple fact is that you’ve already accepted its content for argument sake and made a direct and unambiguous assessment against it (i.e. I’m sorry UB but I think it’s all sophistry, even if it’s logically consistent, it’s not empirically falsifiable).

    So now I am asking you to direct your attention to your accepted alternative. Here again is the question I am asking you to respond to:

    A claim against the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter is immediately falsifiable by a demonstration of the rise of a semiotic system from inanimate matter – or was that not already obvious?

    On the other hand, how would you falsify a claim that a semiotic system arose from inanimate matter if that claim is forever made in debate, but never put to a test?

    It would seem (per rational observation) that the first claim is immediately falsifiable through experiment, while the second is ultimately non-falsifiable by any means whatsoever.

    Do you disagree? If so, then describe your reasoning.

    You will either address the accepted alternative in the same vein as you did my argument, or you will refuse to do so. If you refuse to do so, then you will have accepted the content of my argument long enough to make an unambiguous claim against it, then upon my direct response, refuse to address it again as a means to protect your alternative from the same scrutiny you afforded my argument.

    It’s your call. Accept the content as you did in order to disparage it, and answer the question. Or, refuse to accept it, and protect your alternative from the obvious outcome of your own critique.

  147. 147
    Upright BiPed says:

    I’m off for a short while for lunch. I’ll return later.

  148. 148
    sigaba says:

    Actually your argument at 109 seems fine if we accept all your definitions. I don’t think it gets you anywhere, it certainly doesn’t get you to supernatural causation, but it’s fine. If you take my general definition of semiotics it becomes unfalsifiable.

    I still don’t think you need the semiotics stuff, it just complicates the argument — evolution has many necessary parts, and the informational parts are only one of them. We can just as easily say that evolution requires reproduction, or death, thus reproduction or death must be established before the onset of evolution, and that evolution thus cannot create reproduction or death per se. It really does feel like you’re just trying to make the reasoning harmonize with the information complexity literature.

    Given these observations, a mechanism capable of establishing this semiotic state is necessary prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution and information-based organization.

    Did the “onset of Darwinian evolution” happen at one or a few remote times in the past, or all the time? I don’t understand what you mean by something being the “source” of evolution, this should be more carefully qualified. Can mechanism be stated as simply “conditions,” or is there the necessity of some previous other thing?

  149. 149
    Upright BiPed says:

    So, per 146, you are unwilling to subject your position to the same scrutiny as you subject mine. Fine. We needn’t go any further.

    cheers

  150. 150
    sigaba says:

    So, per 146, you are unwilling to subject your position to the same scrutiny as you subject mine

    I don’t have a position at this time… Are you trying to weasel out of qualifying yours?

  151. 151
    sigaba says:

    I confess I find your mode of debate far from irenic, let alone persuasive.

  152. 152
    Upright BiPed says:

    segaba: Your position is non-falsifiable!

    UB: It can be immediately falsified by experiment, Is yours falsifiable?

    segaba: Let me restate your argument.

    UB: You just said it was non-falsifiable. So is yours falsifiable?

    segaba: Actually your argument is fine if we use your definitions.

    UB: So is yours falsifiable?

    segaba: I must confess, I don’t like your argument style.

    😐

  153. 153
    sigaba says:

    Why does it matter if my position is falsifiable? Such a thing would have no bearing on your argument.

    If your entire defense of your theory is “everyone else’s is faulty,” that’s not really valid.

  154. 154
    Upright BiPed says:

    No need to worry about it sigaba, I am sure these are just differences in personality. If I present an argument where it’s blatantly obvious that the argument is falsifiable, and someone tells me that it’s non-falsifiable sophistry, then I feel completely validated in pressing them on a question to measure their balance on the issue.

    There is also no need to assume my argument is based on the faults in other arguments. I am fairly capable of defending my position, and I would have lost it long ago if my position were based on such obvious faulty reasoning.

  155. 155
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry,

    Regardless of my definition, I wonder what your response is to my earlier point, “by definition a semiotic system requires a decoding mechanism, someone or something to assign a specific value to the material signal or inscription.”

    Yes, of course it does – and every semiotic system (including the genetic system) has a material protocol(s) to accomplish just that. The material protocol establishes a mandatory physicochemically-arbitrary relationship between the arrangement of the medium and the physical effect the system will produce from that arrangement.

    Your question illustrates exactly why you should set aside the anthropocentric view, and analyze these systems from their material consequences alone.

    The interesting thing about the genetic system is not only does it contain the protocols to establish the required relationships within the system, but also has the additional systematic protocols to establish the dimensionality of the genetic code.

  156. 156
    sigaba says:

    If I present an argument where it’s blatantly obvious that the argument is falsifiable, and someone tells me that it’s non-falsifiable sophistry, then I feel completely validated in pressing them on a question to measure their balance on the issue.

    The problem is your argument at 109 is fine, I was working from this account of it I read last year, which I would hold has a faulty premise at 4. Your argument has significantly changed in the last year.

  157. 157
    Mung says:

    I was looking for Convergent Evolution in my “Design Patterns” book. =P

  158. 158
    Mung says:

    Upright BiPed @100

    lol. thanks! Nice to see that wit and sarcasm still thrive.

  159. 159
    Mung says:

    Upright BiPed @102

    Just want to thank you for that concise historical review. Bookmarked.

    p.s. May be the basis for a new thread. (hint hint)

    The Relevance of Semiotics to Biology (or some such high falutin soundin monicker).

  160. 160
    Mung says:

    Is Jerad now willing to discuss “the Origin of Life,” a topic he so assiduously avoided (feigning complete ignorance/incompetence) in his first foray here at UD?

    Or is he now just trolling?

  161. 161
    Mung says:

    Upright BiPed:

    Describe a sign that does not have a mapping or does not require translation.

    The sign of Jonah?

    The sign of the son of man?

    Great question. Let me know if it’s ever answered.

  162. 162
    Mung says:

    The problem is your argument at 109 is fine

    Yup. That’s the problem. We agree. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

  163. 163
    Upright BiPed says:

    Sigaba at 156,

    The problem is your argument at 109 is fine, I was working from this account of it I read last year, which I would hold has a faulty premise at 4. Your argument has significantly changed in the last year.

    I have no problem with that, after all, that’s what arguments are properly supposed to do – improve. The issue with #4 is that not all material representations present an arbitrary component to the system. Some do, and some don’t.

    All semiotic systems function via the three dimensional recognition of the representational objects given to them. Most systems produce their effects directly from that recognition. A pheromone is a prime example. Other systems however, vastly rarer in number, have an added dimensional component to their operation. Some systems recognize the three dimensional structure of a representational object but do not immediately produce an effect from that recognition, instead they operate in a single dimension to recognize another object (and perhaps another after that) before producing an effect. In order to function, such systems require systematic protocols to establish this dimensional quality in both in the medium and in the translation apparatus producing effects from that medium. So while all semiotic systems demonstrate a physicochemically arbitrary relationship between the arrangement of the medium and the effect it evokes in the system, this extra dimensionality does indeed present a physicochemically arbitrary component to the system (i.e. the dimensional quality of the system is not locally derivable from physical law). My #4 from last year did not properly reflect this distinction. As it happens, genetic information systems are in this second group of systems, and given that they are the general focus of the argument being presented, this may explain why I did not catch the distinction. In any case, dimensional semiotic systems demonstrate the added quality of being able to encode virtually any amount of information of any kind – maintaining a physically economical store of representational objects. The only other examples of dimensional semiotic systems are mathematics and language.

  164. 164
    Jerad says:

    Joe (122):

    Yes design has been detected.

    Well, better get busy trying to figure out when that happened then eh?

    There isn’t any evidence that accumuylations of genetic accidents can produce proteins, let alone multi-protein configs.

    Just because you accept hearsay and speculation as science that doesn’t mean the rest of us have to be so gullible.

    And if you stopped lying and started presenting some actual evidence, my tone would change. However when all you do is lie and deflect then I will respond accordingly.

    Well, what many, many, many intelligent, educated people who have worked decades in biology find to be evidence isn’t good enough for Joe. Oh well, I guess some people will just get left behind.

    Joe (124):

    You have no idea if they are all random or not. The evidence says they are not all random, just ask James Shapiro.

    Are you sure he’s right? Is your mathematical skill up to the task of evaluating his argument? What if he’s wrong? Has his work been reviewed and verified and built upon by others?

    Is it your contention that all mutations are not random, most mutations are not random, some mutations are not random or a select few mutations are not random? Or are you just trying to sew doubt and avoid making a stance yourself?

    Changing what exists does not account for the origin of the body plan being changed. Also ID is OK with change, so is YEC.

    Body plans are derived from previous body plans by a step-by-step process of modification.

    Hey, if you’re okay with change then you must be okay with evolution! Cool.

    Changing eye color does not account for the eye. Nor does it account for the organism.

    What do you get if you cumulatively select hundreds, thousands, millions of years of small changes? Why do you think there is some magical boundary beyond which such accumulations cannot step? You seem to agree that we’ve observed ‘micro’ evolution. What do you think prevents ‘macro’ evolution from occurring?

  165. 165
    Jerad says:

    Occam’s razor is not an excuse to ignore evidence, as there is a world of difference between being simple while coherently addressing the facts in evidence and being simplistic while suppressing or ignoring material but inconvenient facts.

    Obviously you apply Ockham’s Razor after looking at all data. And you try and find the most parsimonious model/explanation that invokes the fewest assumed causes.

    Evolutionary theory explains the data, is not contradicted by the data and assumes no processes that we cannot be sure were in existence at the pertinent time.

    ID is happy to assume there was an unspecified, undetected intelligent designer around . . . at what time was it? Who did . . . what was it ID is saying the designer did again?

    You can’t inferred design without invoking a designer. And you can’t even specify when design was implemented or what designs were implemented.

    So, at this point, ID assumes an agent/cause which evolutionary theory does not invoke. And ID cannot even account for the actions of this assumed intelligent designer.

    I’d say evolutionary theory is the better model.

    Recent Nobel Prizes for Chemistry

    2012 – “for studies of G-protein-coupled receptors”

    2010 – “for palladium-catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis”

    2009 – “for studies of the structure and function of the ribosome”

    2006 – “for his studies of the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription”

    2005 – “for the development of the metathesis method in organic synthesis”

    2004 – “for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation”

    2003 – “for discoveries concerning channels in cell membranes […] for structural and mechanistic studies of ion channels”

    2002 – “for the development of methods for identification and structure analyses of biological macromolecules […] for his development of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy for determining the three-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules in solution”

    1997 – “for their elucidation of the enzymatic mechanism underlying the synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)”

    1993 – “for contributions to the developments of methods within DNA-based chemistry […] for his fundamental contributions to the establishment of oligonucleotide-based, site-directed mutagenesis and its development for protein studies”

    1990 – “for his development of the theory and methodology of organic synthesis”

    1989 – “for their discovery of catalytic properties of RNA”

    1980 – “for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant-DNA”

    1972 – “for their contribution to the understanding of the connection between chemical structure and catalytic activity of the active centre of the ribonuclease molecule”

    And now I’m bored. Perhaps none of these directly, specifically address whatever issue you think is not being studied. But it does show that the Nobel committee has recognised, many times, outstanding contributions to the understanding of how molecular biology works with their prize in chemistry.

    And the Nobel prize is the smallest tip of a giant iceberg.

  166. 166
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    Saying, believing or wishing does not make things so.

    In the case of evolutionary materialism and associated scientism, the evidence is, that the mechanisms put forth have no empirically undergirded capacity to account for origin of FSCO/I, in particular origin of life and of body plans. As has already been summarised repeatedly.

    Similarly, the Nobel prizes you list constitute a case of subject switching, i.e. irrelevancy by strawman fallacy joined to elephant hurling.

    KF

  167. 167
    Jerad says:

    You have absolutely no intentions whatsoever of acknowledging any artifact of design found in nature, regardless of the type or quality of that artifact. And if something is presented to you that the mechanism of Darwinian evolution could not have possibly created, you can then defend your position by demanding an impossible standard of evidence far beyond anything you would apply to your own position. In other words, you have deliberately insulated yourself from any contradictory evidence. And since I am not even needed for that type of exchange, I will deplane the conversation and leave you the last word.

    I’ll happily accept design if and when all possible unguided, natural causes have been eliminated. Since that has not yet been done (regarding DNA) then I’ll not yet accept the design inference. That includes the discovery of something that is irreducibly complex.

    I am frequently asked on this forum to be impossibly specific on historical matters. I expect that ID proponents should at least be able to (roughly, I’m not talking about a particular year) say when design was implemented. And I think if you can’t give some idea of what designs were implemented then ID really has no teeth whatsoever. It doesn’t explain what we see in the fossil record. It doesn’t explain the bio-geographic diversity we observe. It doesn’t explain the existing genomes. And it doesn’t cast any light on aspects of existing morphologies.

    Any problems with evolutionary theory aside, ID really has no central, coherent, explanatory hypothesis. All you all seem to be able to agree on is: Design happened. You can’t even agree on when or what. (I’ve stopped asking for how and why.)

  168. 168
    Jerad says:

    Saying, believing or wishing does not make things so.

    Quite true.

    Are you sure your own position is not just wishful thinking? You have no proof that body plans exist on isolated islands of function. Are you sure design has been detected? Your metric is not verified by empirical application to borderline cases. Are you sure design was implemented? No one seems able to point to any case of when it happened.

    Casting doubt on evolutionary theory does not fill in the huge blank spaces in the design inference.

  169. 169
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    something is wrong. Even posts in this thread provide cases of FSCO/I coming from design, it is that ubiquitous.

    You are unable to provide a single of blind chance and mechanical necessity producing any example of FSCO/I in our observation. Just one solid case would suffice. But after years of suggestions that have repeatedly failed, that is hopeless. For the same reasons why we will not observe a significant macro-scale “exception” to the second law of thermodynamics.

    You full well should know the difference between an abstract logical possibility of “anything” — any config — emerging by chance, and a reasonable empirical plausibility.

    The underlying application of inductive reasoning to traces of the unobservable past of origins, is just as straightforward: like causes like, and circumstantial evidence is in many cases just as decisive as eyewitness testimony.

    It seems to me that you find yourself advocating for a mechanism not shown to have the required capability to create FSCO/I on an empirically plausible basis, in the teeth of one that has abundant such evidence, and to do so, you complain of demanding more than is deliverable while projecting a demand that amounts to a turnabout attempt, demanding what science does not normally address, logical impossibility.

    The second law of thermodynamics is not at the logical impossibility level. In short, it looks like you are being selectively hyperskeptical, while projecting that inappropriately to those who are saying, if you claim blind chance and mechanical necessity are capable of creating FSCO/I including coding systems, codes in string data structures, algorithms and associated co-ordinated, organised execution machinery, at least show us capacity to create FSCO/I.

    You need to think again, on whether Lewontinian a priori materialism is driving your judgement and leading to a situation as described by Johnson:

    For scientific materialists the materialism comes first; the science comes thereafter. [[Emphasis original] We might more accurately term them “materialists employing science.” And if materialism is true, then some materialistic theory of evolution has to be true simply as a matter of logical deduction, regardless of the evidence. That theory will necessarily be at least roughly like neo-Darwinism, in that it will have to involve some combination of random changes and law-like processes capable of producing complicated organisms that (in Dawkins’ words) “give the appearance of having been designed for a purpose.” [Emphasis added]

    . . . . The debate about creation and evolution is not deadlocked . . . Biblical literalism is not the issue. The issue is whether materialism and rationality are the same thing. Darwinism is based on an a priori commitment to materialism, not on a philosophically neutral assessment of the evidence. Separate the philosophy from the science, and the proud tower collapses. [[Emphasis added.] [[The Unraveling of Scientific Materialism, First Things, 77 (Nov. 1997), pp. 22 – 25.]

    SETI is the clincher on this, as it seems that it is acceptable — to the point of expending cumulatively quite impressive taxpayer-funded sums across decades — to infer design on signs, save where the a priori commitment Johnson objected to is at stake.

    And indeed, as I already pointed out, we routinely do things like inferring to arson on signs, even in absence of other direct evidence of an arsonist.

    Here, you seem committed to the proposition that molecular scale coding systems, codes, algorithms and implementing machinery assembled themselves out of molecular chaos, by chance and necessity. That is a very strong claim or implication, and it is reasonable to expect that you will show empirical warrant of such capacity.

    And, it is precisely why the first main point in the pro-darwinism essay challenge was to address this, A challenge that you ducked a year ago, and which no serious and cogent effort from your side has come forth since. (And BTW, you will notice that Wiki was stood in for an attempt and addressed, as was the talk origins 29 evidences claim. Both were found wanting, for cause.)

    You are free to hold a materialist ideologically driven view on origins, but you have no right to then dress it up in a lab coat and demand a monopoly on science or science education.

    KF

  170. 170
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    The design inference is both modest and well grounded.

    We know per massive observation that chance [whatever gives rise to random distributions etc], necessity and intelligence exist as empirically warranted causal factors. They have characteristic signs, and these are distinct. So, we may infer freely from circumstantial evidence of causal factor to its empitically warranted, inductively grounded source.

    That holds when we cannot explain why the world so often shows lawlike patterns like F = m*a, or why molecules follow particular statistical patterns, or quantum processes such as RA decay, or when we do not have separate evidence of a particular designer at work in a given case.

    KF

  171. 171
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    Which of the above Nobel prizes demonstrates the capacity of blind chance and mechanical necessity to generate FSCO/I in particular codes, code systems (a linguistic phenomenon), coded data structures beyond 500 bits of functionally specific info stored integrated with algorithms and algorithm implementing machinery?

    The answer is obvious, none.

    In short, you are partly swi\tching topical focus [essentially any prize for molecular biology related topics] — a red herring led away to a strawman, and you are partly elephant hurling by way of literature bluff — implying a proof in a body of work where bno such actual proof is on the table.

    In short, you are showing, more and more, the lack of evidence.

    Worse, there is another side to the story.

    Have you considered the fine tuning implications of actually showing that the laws and circumstances of physics and chemistry have “life” based ob carbon chemistry in cells written into them?

    Don’t forget, there is a whole other side to design theory.

    KF

  172. 172
    Joe says:


    Yes design has been detected.

    Well, better get busy trying to figure out when that happened then eh?

    Cuz a scientifically illiterate Jerad sez so?

    Well, what many, many, many intelligent, educated people who have worked decades in biology find to be evidence isn’t good enough for Joe.

    LoL! They haven’t found anything that demonstrates unguided processes can produce a multi-protein complex. IOW you are just a bluffing liar and a gullible sad-sack.

    Body plans are derived from previous body plans by a step-by-step process of modification.

    That is the bald assetion. However there isn’t any evidence to support it.

    Also you make it sound as if Lamarkiam is the ruling paradigm.

    Hey, if you’re okay with change then you must be okay with evolution!

    So you are ignorant as to what is being debated. Cool.

    What do you get if you cumulatively select hundreds, thousands, millions of years of small changes?

    No one knows. However throwing father time at an issue is NOT science. But then again you have no idea what science is.

    Why do you think there is some magical boundary beyond which such accumulations cannot step?

    You seem to think there are magical mystery mutations that can do things when we aren’t looking.

    You seem to agree that we’ve observed ‘micro’ evolution. What do you think prevents ‘macro’ evolution from occurring?

    Strange that you cannot name once instance of micro-evolution that can exttrapolated into macro. Beak sizes do NOT explain the bird. Moth coloration does not explain the moth. Antibiotic resistance does not explain prokaryotes.

  173. 173
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    Evolutionary theory explains the data,

    That is your opinion. However you can’t link to this alleged theory nor can you produce a testable hypothesis for unguisded evolution. So obviously you have no idea.

    Recent Nobel Prizes for Chemistry

    2012 – “for studies of G-protein-coupled receptors”

    2010 – “for palladium-catalyzed cross couplings in organic synthesis”

    2009 – “for studies of the structure and function of the ribosome”

    2006 – “for his studies of the molecular basis of eukaryotic transcription”

    2005 – “for the development of the metathesis method in organic synthesis”

    2004 – “for the discovery of ubiquitin-mediated protein degradation”

    2003 – “for discoveries concerning channels in cell membranes […] for structural and mechanistic studies of ion channels”

    2002 – “for the development of methods for identification and structure analyses of biological macromolecules […] for his development of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy for determining the three-dimensional structure of biological macromolecules in solution”

    1997 – “for their elucidation of the enzymatic mechanism underlying the synthesis of adenosine triphosphate (ATP)”

    1993 – “for contributions to the developments of methods within DNA-based chemistry […] for his fundamental contributions to the establishment of oligonucleotide-based, site-directed mutagenesis and its development for protein studies”

    1990 – “for his development of the theory and methodology of organic synthesis”

    1989 – “for their discovery of catalytic properties of RNA”

    1980 – “for his fundamental studies of the biochemistry of nucleic acids, with particular regard to recombinant-DNA”

    1972 – “for their contribution to the understanding of the connection between chemical structure and catalytic activity of the active centre of the ribonuclease molecule”

    Nothing there that has anytrhing to do with unguided evolution. Jerad is either really ignorant or very dishonest.

  174. 174
    Joe says:


    DNA codons represent amino acids, they do not become amino acids via some chemical reaction. That the codons represent amino acids means the codons are symbols in the process.

    sigaba:

    I’m not sure there’s a difference between representing and becoming in this instance.

    Then you do not belong in this discussion.

    A lot of physical processes The magnetic field of the earth shifts occasionally, and these changes are recorded in bands on oceanic ridges, but neither the Earth nor the magnetic field “become” the bands, and we don’t say that the alternating bands are “symbols.”

    Umm the earth does become the bands. What do you think the bands are made of if not the earth? They don’t just hover above the earth in the ocean.

  175. 175
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    I’ll happily accept design if and when all possible unguided, natural causes have been eliminated.

    You can’t even produce a testable hypothesus wrt unguided processes producing, say, a bacterial flagellum. Heck you can’t even determine if all mutations are random as you don’t have any methodology to do so.

    And finally you have no idea what makes an organism what it is. That means you have no idea what it would take to make one.

  176. 176
    LarTanner says:

    UBP @ 155:

    every semiotic system (including the genetic system) has a material protocol(s) to accomplish just that [i.e., decoding].

    Right, but if you classify what you call the “genetic system” as a semiotic system, then what specifically acts as the “material protocol”?

    There is an answer, and I am not posing a trick or ‘gotcha’ question. But I think it is important to be able to say what’s performing the decoding in the genetic system. I don’t want to presume what your answer is or should be, so I’d like to know what you think on this.

    Also, you seemed to be driving me to something earlier when you asked me for a definition of information. Yet you did not comment on what I offered. Can you please do so now?

  177. 177
    Phinehas says:

    Jerad:

    What do you get if you cumulatively select hundreds, thousands, millions of years of small changes? Why do you think there is some magical boundary beyond which such accumulations cannot step? You seem to agree that we’ve observed ‘micro’ evolution. What do you think prevents ‘macro’ evolution from occurring?

    I was going to attempt to answer these questions, albeit admittedly from a layman’s perspective, but then I read this remarkably candid admission:

    I’ll happily accept design if and when all possible unguided, natural causes have been eliminated.

    All possible unguided, natural causes? Could you please elucidate all possible unguided, natural causes for us so that we can understand exactly what it will take to falsify your position that only unguided, natural causes are responsible for all of life?

    And if you cannot provide us with a list of all possible unguided, natural causes, will you concede that it would be unreasonable to expect us to provide what you cannot? And if it would be unreasonable to expect us to provide such a list, will you concede that it would be even more unreasonable to expect us to eliminate as a possibility that which cannot even be provided as a possibility? In other words, isn’t it abundantly clear at this point that you’ve protected your beliefs with an unreasonably high barrier? What then distinguishes such beliefs from dogma? And why do you think these beliefs need to be so well protected?

  178. 178
    Jerad says:

    You are unable to provide a single of blind chance and mechanical necessity producing any example of FSCO/I in our observation.

    How about the development of life on earth? 🙂

    It seems to me that you find yourself advocating for a mechanism not shown to have the required capability to create FSCO/I on an empirically plausible basis, in the teeth of one that has abundant such evidence, and to do so, you complain of demanding more than is deliverable while projecting a demand that amounts to a turnabout attempt, demanding what science does not normally address, logical impossibility.

    ‘Not shown’ only if you are denying the theory of evolution.

    The second law of thermodynamics is not at the logical impossibility level. In short, it looks like you are being selectively hyperskeptical, while projecting that inappropriately to those who are saying, if you claim blind chance and mechanical necessity are capable of creating FSCO/I including coding systems, codes in string data structures, algorithms and associated co-ordinated, organised execution machinery, at least show us capacity to create FSCO/I.

    It only looks like that to you because I disagree with you. You are so convinced by your own argument that you think people who don’t see it the same way are deluded or idealistically motivated.

    SETI is the clincher on this, as it seems that it is acceptable — to the point of expending cumulatively quite impressive taxpayer-funded sums across decades — to infer design on signs, save where the a priori commitment Johnson objected to is at stake.

    Isn’t the point that we don’t know if there is ‘anyone out there’ and some people think it’s reasonable to look?

    I don’t mind you looking for a designer. The search might be scientific. But claiming there is one is not until you find the evidence. And inferring design means you are inferring a designer.

    Here, you seem committed to the proposition that molecular scale coding systems, codes, algorithms and implementing machinery assembled themselves out of molecular chaos, by chance and necessity. That is a very strong claim or implication, and it is reasonable to expect that you will show empirical warrant of such capacity.

    OR I just use the scientific method and I adopt a model which is the most parsimonious. All scientific knowledge is provisional. Someday you might prove that your intelligent designer exists. Good luck. You’ve got a lot of work to do. But until then I’ll stick with a theory that has gotten stronger and stronger over the last century and a half.

    You are free to hold a materialist ideologically driven view on origins, but you have no right to then dress it up in a lab coat and demand a monopoly on science or science education.

    Except it’s not idealogical. You say so because you can’t imagine how anyone could disagree with you.

    We know per massive observation that chance [whatever gives rise to random distributions etc], necessity and intelligence exist as empirically warranted causal factors. They have characteristic signs, and these are distinct. So, we may infer freely from circumstantial evidence of causal factor to its empitically warranted, inductively grounded source.

    Human intelligence. Anything beyond that?

    Many people would argue with you that DNA shows the characteristic signs of human intelligence. There’s junk, there’s broken bits, there’s repeated segments. it’s a mess.

    Which of the above Nobel prizes demonstrates the capacity of blind chance and mechanical necessity to generate FSCO/I in particular codes, code systems (a linguistic phenomenon), coded data structures beyond 500 bits of functionally specific info stored integrated with algorithms and algorithm implementing machinery?

    I admitted that I was just showing that lots and lots of recognised research was going on regarding fundamental biology. Part of the reason no one has been awarded prizes for studying mechanical necessity, blah, blah, blah is because very few people find it an interesting topic. The ID community pretend like it’s a critical topic and then try and show that ID is not taken seriously because no one is working on their subject.

    Have you considered the fine tuning implications of actually showing that the laws and circumstances of physics and chemistry have “life” based ob carbon chemistry in cells written into them?

    You don’t even know if the constants of the universe are tuneable.

  179. 179
    Upright BiPed says:

    Hello Larry,

    Right, but if you classify what you call the “genetic system” as a semiotic system, then what specifically acts as the “material protocol”?

    The function of the protocol is to establish a physicochemically arbitrary relationship between the arrangement of the medium and the production of a physical effect. The establishment of a local relationship is fundamental to the operation of the system. It is required in order to allow the input of recorded information to constrain a deterministic system. Without the establishment of this relationship, the effect would have to be locally derivable from the arrangement of the medium (by inexorable law alone).

    During protein synthesis, the arrangement of DNA is transcribed into an arrangement of messenger RNA. That mRNA is then transported to the ribosome and used to order transfer RNA molecules in the sequence as originally prescribed by the DNA. That entire process is controlled by the purely deterministic forces of base pairing. But such forces cannot establish the required relationship within the system. Instead, the relationship is established by the protein aaRS. The aaRS charge the tRNA with their proper amino acids prior to the tRNA ever entering the ribosome. The establishment of the code (the relationship) is therefore realized in both temporal and spatial isolation from the medium, thereby establishing the physicochemically arbitrary relationship required for the system to function.

  180. 180
    Jerad says:

    Cuz a scientifically illiterate Jerad sez so?

    How else do expect to be taken seriously?

    LoL! They haven’t found anything that demonstrates unguided processes can produce a multi-protein complex. IOW you are just a bluffing liar and a gullible sad-sack.

    If you want to come up with a better model then by all means do so. Do you have such a model?

    Strange that you cannot name once instance of micro-evolution that can exttrapolated into macro. Beak sizes do NOT explain the bird. Moth coloration does not explain the moth. Antibiotic resistance does not explain prokaryotes.

    Why do you think there is some undefined limit to evolution? The evidence seems to suggest that you’re wrong.

    That is your opinion. However you can’t link to this alleged theory nor can you produce a testable hypothesis for unguisded evolution. So obviously you have no idea.

    I’m not a evolutionary biologist. Your queries have been addressed if you could be bothered to look for the answers. But you think if I don’t provide them for you your case has been proven.

    You can’t even produce a testable hypothesus wrt unguided processes producing, say, a bacterial flagellum. Heck you can’t even determine if all mutations are random as you don’t have any methodology to do so.

    The default, parsimonious assumption is that they are random until proven otherwise. You’ve got some work to do aside from being a merchant of doubt.

    And finally you have no idea what makes an organism what it is. That means you have no idea what it would take to make one.

    I’d say unguided, natural processes. As is supported by several lines of data.

  181. 181
    Jerad says:

    All possible unguided, natural causes? Could you please elucidate all possible unguided, natural causes for us so that we can understand exactly what it will take to falsify your position that only unguided, natural causes are responsible for all of life?

    The currently understood laws of physics, chemistry, biology, etc.

    Including ‘possible’ was a poor choice of words on my part.

    And if you cannot provide us with a list of all possible unguided, natural causes, will you concede that it would be unreasonable to expect us to provide what you cannot? And if it would be unreasonable to expect us to provide such a list, will you concede that it would be even more unreasonable to expect us to eliminate as a possibility that which cannot even be provided as a possibility? In other words, isn’t it abundantly clear at this point that you’ve protected your beliefs with an unreasonably high barrier? What then distinguishes such beliefs from dogma? And why do you think these beliefs need to be so well protected?

    I should not have included the word ‘possible’. I meant that all natural explanations should be exhausted before the assumption of some unobserved, unmeasured and undefined cause should be made. And, as in the example of relativity and quantum mechanics, when new laws or causes are hypothesised they need to be backed up with empirical data.

    In the last 100 years someone proposed that continents move! Absurd some said. Ridiculous!! How could that be? But evidence piled up and then the hypothesis became a theory.

    If you want your idea accepted then you have to find the evidence. Maybe there is/was an intelligent designer. It’s possible. It’s impossible to prove there wasn’t. But, so far, there’s not enough evidence to suggest there was/is. Get the evidence. Define what it does and what it doesn’t do. Measure it, study it, give the scientific community something to work with. All I hear is a negative argument from ignorance (natural processes aren’t up to the job) and a jump to an assumption (a designer did it) with no clear claim or specifics.

    You don’t have to get it all right at first. But you have to present something that has some teeth and can explain the data. You can’t just say: that’s the way the designer wanted to do it without defining the designer somehow.

  182. 182
    Jerad says:

    Look, any new, controversial idea that is severely different from the accepted paradigm is going to have massive amounts of opposition. You can see that in many scientific controversies of the last century. The successful ideas find evidence, define their proposals and do research no one else has done.

    Except for finding new gaps to point to in evolutionary theory ID has somewhat stagnated. Dr Dembski is seemingly no longer doing ID research. Dr Behe’s ideas have been roundly dismissed. Dr Meyer does no research of his own. Dr Miller . . . I’m not sure what Dr Miller does but it’s not research. Dr Gauger as well doesn’t seem to do much original research. Dr Gonzalez had his moment in the sun and now . . .

    You can’t just keep finding fault with evolutionary theory. Even if you manage to make some valid points you still haven’t pushed ID forward. At best that will just point out places where more work needs to be done. That doesn’t give you a designer. That doesn’t prove ID.

    Many of you will have read Holy Blood, Holy Grail or are familiar with some of the claims therein via some other source like a Dan Brown novel. Do you buy those ideas? They’re pretty . . . far out there. There’s lot of speculation and maybes and could be’s and . . . that’s it. I’m guessing that most of you, like me, find the ideas interesting but unproven. Maybe all the evidence for the ideas has already been found. If so then they’ve got to remain speculation. (In fact several of the assumptions have already been punctured.)

    What about those who claim to have been abducted by aliens and ‘tested’. Is there any hard evidence? Nope. IF someone can show me some physical evidence, preferably lots of physical evidence then I’ll start paying attention.

    I’m not hyper-skeptic, I’m realistic. You have to have a very, very strong case to get me to give up ideas that have great explanatory power, are currently parsimonious and invoke no undefined and unproven causes. And the scientific community, which is actually very conservative, is going to smoke test any claims that don’t match the current consensus. As it should. You don’t throw out old ideas until you’re damn sure the new ones are better.

    That just makes sense.

    It’s a hard row to hoe but . . . that’s the way it should be.

  183. 183
    Phinehas says:

    Jerad:

    I should not have included the word ‘possible’. I meant that all natural explanations should be exhausted…

    I’ll happily accept design if and when all […] unguided, natural causes have been eliminated.

    All I hear is a negative argument from ignorance (natural processes aren’t up to the job)…

    Have you noticed that the negative argument that you are decrying appears indistinguishable from the one that you are requiring in order to be moved off your current position? Again, it looks like you are (unconsciously?) protecting your position to an unreasonable degree. Why do you suppose you feel the need to protect it like this?

  184. 184
    LarTanner says:

    But UBP (#179):

    The function of the protocol is to establish a physicochemically arbitrary relationship between the arrangement of the medium and the production of a physical effect. The establishment of a local relationship is fundamental to the operation of the system. It is required in order to allow the input of recorded information to constrain a deterministic system. Without the establishment of this relationship, the effect would have to be locally derivable from the arrangement of the medium (by inexorable law alone).

    You have not here identified what it is that actually acts as the protocol and establishes the local relationship. I’m looking for you to make the identification.

    During protein synthesis, the arrangement of DNA is transcribed into an arrangement of messenger RNA. That mRNA is then transported to the ribosome and used to order transfer RNA molecules in the sequence as originally prescribed by the DNA. That entire process is controlled by the purely deterministic forces of base pairing. But such forces cannot establish the required relationship within the system. Instead, the relationship is established by the protein aaRS. The aaRS charge the tRNA with their proper amino acids prior to the tRNA ever entering the ribosome. The establishment of the code (the relationship) is therefore realized in both temporal and spatial isolation from the medium, thereby establishing the physicochemically arbitrary relationship required for the system to function.

    The above also does not identify what it is that actually implements the protocol and establishes the local relationship. But this is your semiotic theory; you should be able to make the identification readily.

    Try looking at it from the other end of the semiotic process: what is it that does (or allows) transcription of the arrangement of DNA into an arrangement of mRNA?

    Part of the issue is that many semiotic operations are in play simultaneously. For one thing, we are grafting our own sign encoding and decoding abilities onto what we see (or believe we see) happening at the gene level. For another thing, at the gene level, our use of semiotics-laden terms like “transcription” are accurate and helpful to a point.

    For a third thing, ultimately what’s happening in the genes amounts to life using energy to make organized structures. Now, I don’t disagree that what we’re talking about is a semiotic system, yet not only life but the universe and everything in it seems to be semiotic, at least potentially. So, the semiotic argument, to the extent it works, doesn’t make a case for an ultimate ID behind the secenes/signs: it provides a different way of seeing and understanding information gets trafficked in life and the universe.

    This was why I was curious about your response to my definition of information — admittedly, I suspect it’s too broad or inadequate a definition in some ways. As I see it, though, information necessarily inhabits a universe of things and things in motion. Does this make the semiotic system of life any less remarkable or awe-inspiring? I don’t think so. All it does is put life along a continuum of different types of interactions, reactions, and relationships between entities and groups of entities in the universe.

  185. 185
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry,

    Perhaps you just read to fast. I specifically state what sets the protocol in protein synthesis.

    the relationship is established by the protein aaRS.

    This isn’t controversial.

  186. 186
    LarTanner says:

    Yes, understood. Go on.

  187. 187
    Upright BiPed says:

    …the conclusion of the argument presented in #109:

    “[So] in order to translate any form of recorded information, the process fundamentally requires two arrangements of matter operating as an irreducible core within the system. And because Darwinian evolution requires the transfer and translation of recorded information in order to exist itself, it cannot be the source of this system. Given these observations, a mechanism capable of establishing this semiotic state is necessary prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution and information-based organization.

    A mechanism capable of establishing physicochemically arbitrary relationships is required prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution and information-based biological organization.

  188. 188
    LarTanner says:

    I see what you are saying but it would seem that evolution is the mechanism, or chemical evolution, if you like. In the realm of biology, evolution establishes “physicochemically arbitrary relationships,” as you call them, and uses them to build and perpetuate life.

  189. 189
    kairosfocus says:

    jerad,

    Any scheme in origins science that claims a general basis but cannot provide empirical warrant for the powers of its claimed key mechanisms, is in serious trouble. And, if it is backed up by obvious ideological, worldview level question begging, that gets much more serious. Multiply by slanders, career busting and the like, and things are worse than just serious.

    And that is the state of the evolutionary materialist orthodoxy in our day.

    It is high time for some serious rethinking.

    KF

  190. 190
    Jerad says:

    Have you noticed that the negative argument that you are decrying appears indistinguishable from the one that you are requiring in order to be moved off your current position? Again, it looks like you are (unconsciously?) protecting your position to an unreasonable degree. Why do you suppose you feel the need to protect it like this?

    I don’t think I am trying to prove a negative. I’m saying that be very, very, very sure that you cannot account for a phenomena with known existing causes before hypothesising a new one.

    It seems to me that ID is jumping the gun and claiming that natural causes can’t do the job despite all the evidence that they can and before all explorations of their abilities are exhausted.

    Do you think that because I won’t accede to your view I’m being unreasonable and biased? Do you envision a conspiracy against ID promulgated by materialist zombies who have been brainwashed into supporting the party line?

    Can it not be possible that someone disagrees with you without being a shill, a ideologue or an idiot?

    I’ve been called brain dead, a liar and a hyper-skeptic amongst other things on this very thread. Do you think those are fair statements?

  191. 191
    Jerad says:

    Any scheme in origins science that claims a general basis but cannot provide empirical warrant for the powers of its claimed key mechanisms, is in serious trouble. And, if it is backed up by obvious ideological, worldview level question begging, that gets much more serious. Multiply by slanders, career busting and the like, and things are worse than just serious.

    ID has no independent evidence that there was an intelligent designer around . . . when was it? And what did they do exactly.

    I have slandered no one. I have hampered no one’s career. If you didn’t mean to include me in your diatribe then I’d like that stated.

    And that is the state of the evolutionary materialist orthodoxy in our day.

    It is high time for some serious rethinking.

    Do you think it’s possible to disagree with you and still be an intelligent, caring, non-hyperskeptic, non-biased person? You seem to label people based on their relationship to your view.

  192. 192
    Phinehas says:

    Jerad:

    I don’t think I am trying to prove a negative.

    Me neither. I don’t think I implied otherwise. You are simply requiring that others provide a negative argument if you are to be moved off your current position.

    I’ll happily accept design if and when all […] unguided, natural causes have been eliminated.

    And then complaining that the only thing you are hearing is a negative argument.

    All I hear is a negative argument from ignorance (natural processes aren’t up to the job)…

    So, we need to prove to you that natural processes aren’t up to the job before you’ll consider design, but you want us to do so without arguing that natural processes aren’t up to the job? Again, your position would seem to be very well protected.

    Do you think that because I won’t accede to your view I’m being unreasonable and biased?

    No. I only think it is unreasonable to require a negative argument and then complain that all you are hearing is a negative argument.

    Do you envision a conspiracy against ID promulgated by materialist zombies who have been brainwashed into supporting the party line?

    Brainwashed zombies? No. I envision that any conspiracy against ID has nothing to do with either brainwashing or zombies.

    Can it not be possible that someone disagrees with you without being a shill, a ideologue or an idiot?

    Of course it is possible, though certainly not guaranteed. Still, I am very willing to give folks the benefit of the doubt. Have I said something to imply otherwise?

    I’ve been called brain dead, a liar and a hyper-skeptic amongst other things on this very thread. Do you think those are fair statements?

    As I’ve said, you appear to be protecting your position to an unreasonable degree. I’ve asked several times why you would do this. I think this is a fair question, but it is only one that you can answer. I do think it would be unfair for me to assign motives or to move from talking about what you’ve said to who you are. If you ever feel I am doing so, please point it out to me, because that’s not what I want to be about.

  193. 193
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry,

    I see what you are saying but it would seem that evolution is the mechanism, or chemical evolution, if you like. In the realm of biology, evolution establishes “physicochemically arbitrary relationships,” as you call them, and uses them to build and perpetuate life.

    I am unsure you are grasping the full weight of the issue. To put it into perspective, you must return to the time on Earth when it was completely barren of the even a microbe of Life. That is the condition prior to the onset of information-based biological organization. From that material state, a mechanism is required to establish the physicochemically arbitrary relationships required for the translation of recorded information. Obviously, the mechanism cannot be Darwinian evolution, because it does not yet exist. You may then wish to suggest chemical evolution, however, there is nothing whatsoever (a massive understatement) in the literature about inanimate chemistry establishing relationships between disparate material objects and instantiating those relationships into a system consisting of two irreducibly complex arrangements of matter. And yet, that is exactly what must happen in order for biological organization to occur. There is no alternative. The existence of recorded information, and its translation into material effects, have distinct physical requirements. They are both coherent and identifiable.

  194. 194
    LarTanner says:

    That is the condition prior to the onset of information-based biological organization.

    But not prior to information-based chemical and physical organization. The mechanisms of chemistry and physics are there, and they must be there co-extensive with the material state.

    Of course, you anticipate the above:

    You may then wish to suggest chemical evolution, however, there is nothing whatsoever (a massive understatement) in the literature about inanimate chemistry establishing relationships between disparate material objects and instantiating those relationships into a system consisting of two irreducibly complex arrangements of matter.

    I think you are quite wrong here. Chemistry and physics seem to be pretty good at establishing all kinds of relationships between disparate objects. Such objects and phenomena include discrete planets and stars, atmospheres and weather patterns, starlight, spacetime, gravity, orbits, atomic elements.

    The objects, particles, and waves of the universe relate to one another often in very regular, predictable — and dare I say, systematic — ways.

    It seems to be that our fundamental disagreement concerns whether biochemistry is an extension of chemistry or a radical break from it. If the latter, there remains the question of whether such a departure can occur by the mechanisms already present in the universe or require some additional, outside force as a necessity.

    And I think at this point, we can go round and round the mulberry bush on metaphysical outlook and baseline conceptions of what is chemistry and what is biochemistry — but we are now at the point where experimentation and observation must settle the questions.

  195. 195
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry,

    UB: That is the condition prior to the onset of information-based biological organization.

    Larry: But not prior to information-based chemical and physical organization.

    Biological systems are chemo-physical systems.

    The issue here is that information recorded in the arrangement of a material medium, which is then translated into a material effect, has a physical fingerprint with real-world physical requirements. If those physical requirements are not met, then there is no such thing as information-based anything. Whether we call it biochemical or just chemical doesn’t matter. So… you are simply wrong about this. There are no pre-biological instances of “information-based chemical and physical organization” recorded anywhere in the physical record. Does material evidence matter? We can, of course, equivocate on what information is, and we can force fit some alternate conception of “information” which will fundamentally differ from every instance of translated information we observe in nature – but to what end? It would inescapably have nothing whatsoever to do with the physical process of translating form from a medium into an effect. We would then have two conceptions of information; one requiring translation via a physicochemically arbitrary relationship (universally observed throughout the living kingdom) and then another conception having absolutely nothing in common with the first. Do we then pretend among ourselves that these two entirely unrelated physical processes are the same thing?

    The mechanisms of chemistry and physics are there, and they must be there co-extensive with the material state.

    Physical reality exists? Sure.

    The process of translating form from the arrangement of a material medium exists as well. It has unique physical requirements found nowhere else in the physical world. Can it occur in the absence of the material conditions that make it possible?

  196. 196
    Mung says:

    Jerad @181:

    ncluding ‘possible’ was a poor choice of words on my part. … I should not have included the word ‘possible’.

    I meant that all natural explanations should be exhausted before the assumption of some unobserved, unmeasured and undefined cause should be made.

    lol.

    All natural explanations, now extended to included both the possible and the impossible.

    ncluding ‘possible’ was a poor choice of words on my part. … I should not have included the word ‘possible’.

    Perhaps you had in mind some relevant natural explanations of the impossible, or some impossible natural explanations of the possible?

  197. 197
    LarTanner says:

    UBP,

    This will be my last post on the matter, not because we’re resolving issues or flagging on interesting topics but simply because I have professional and personal obligations that need my mindshare.

    You say:

    Biological systems are chemo-physical systems.

    I agree. In fact, I have already said the same thing myself, but we also need to allow a certain distinction by saying that biological systems form a certain class of chemo-physical systems. All biological systems are chemo-physical, but not all chemo-physical systems are biological. So, again, we agree on this point.

    Now, I don’t exactly understand your meaning with this next bit:

    The issue here is that information recorded in the arrangement of a material medium, which is then translated into a material effect, has a physical fingerprint with real-world physical requirements.

    You seem to be talking about a code (i.e., “information recorded in the arrangement of a material medium”) that then gets translated/transformed into something else (“a material effect,” which could be another substance or some work, I suppose).

    If so, at bottom what you are talking about is life; this translation/transformation is what life does. In other words, this is biochemical evolution, the systematic mechanism for translating matter to energy to different matter(s). The “physical fingerprint” of recorded information is the physical process, the work, of decoding. It takes work to convert something into something else.

    I must be misunderstanding your point, however, and this is the main reason you should consider using an illustrative example that lines up all of the different pieces of the semiotic system and allows people to see where exactly your terms are being applied across the semiotic process. If you already have an illustration that uses your terms, then I’m happy to take a look. Otherwise, I don’t see how we are supposed to achieve clarity.

    Next, this:

    If those physical requirements are not met, then there is no such thing as information-based anything. Whether we call it biochemical or just chemical doesn’t matter. So… you are simply wrong about this.

    Wrong about what? I agree that information has physical requirements and also that translation/transcription has physical requirements. I do not think there are biological or chemical reactions without physical preconditions and consequences. The work of information transfer happens in a physical context. If it did not, we would have a very hard time looking back in cosmological time for example. How do you think we would learn anything about the early universe if the universe itself did not contain physical clues to what happened long ago?

    Then, this:

    There are no pre-biological instances of “information-based chemical and physical organization” recorded anywhere in the physical record.

    Perhaps the sticking point is “information-based.” So, let’s put this term aside for now and focus on the rest. Thus, what exactly is planet or a star if not an organization of chemicals conforming to physical laws in a physical reality? If a rock is made of a chemical, the rock also contains information. The information about the rock drawn out depends on what comes into contact with it. If a larger, rock smashes it, the arrangement of smaller rocks will conform to the nature of the impact and the circumstances of the environment. And if a rock is in motion, the character of that motion gives clues to some physical attributes of the rock.

    But when you say “information-based chemical and physical organization,” you are not talking about a rock or a rock in motion; you are talking about a living thing. So my question to you is why there would be any “pre-biological instances of ‘information-based chemical and physical organization'” when this organization actually is itself biological? Your reasoning seems circular, as if you were asking why there were no pre-human instances of rational animals.

    We can, of course, equivocate on what information is, and we can force fit some alternate conception of “information” which will fundamentally differ from every instance of translated information we observe in nature – but to what end? It would inescapably have nothing whatsoever to do with the physical process of translating form from a medium into an effect.

    Well, you were the one who asked — out of the blue — for my definition of information. The only definition you gave was one based on the etymology of the word, which isn’t what you want, right? In any case, you haven’t made it satisfactorily clear to me what the technical meaning of information is, so I cannot gauge what a standard or ‘alternative’ definition might be to you. You now tell me that the meaning of “information” is irrelevant. So it goes.

    Finally, this:

    Physical reality exists? Sure.

    The process of translating form from the arrangement of a material medium exists as well. It has unique physical requirements found nowhere else in the physical world. Can it occur in the absence of the material conditions that make it possible?

    I agree with everything here. Yes, life — the process of translating form — “has unique physical requirements found nowhere else in the physical world.” Life cannot occur without specific material (pre)conditions.

    I suppose I should ask how any of this points to an ID.

  198. 198
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry,

    This will be my last post … because I have professional and personal obligations that need my mindshare.

    Believe me, I completely understand.

    I’ve read through your comments. There is only one thing to address at this time.

    Perhaps the sticking point is “information-based.” So, let’s put this term aside for now and focus on the rest.

    No can do. Everything turns on it. Like any physical thing we might choose to describe, these systems can be described mechanistically, but there is also an organizational description which is fundamental in accounting for the operation of the system.

    When I refer to an “information based” effect, I am talking about an effect that is originated by the local translation of an arrangement of matter, where the effect produced is physicochemically arbitrary to the arrangement. Let that sink in. This translation cannot occur without a relationship instantiated in the system. That relationship is a physical necessity, allowing the input of form to harness inexorable law in order to constrain a system capable of producing that form. If we remove the relationship, then we might as well be talking about oxygen reacting with iron to cause rust.

    Take care Larry.

  199. 199
    Upright BiPed says:

    edit:

    “…in order to constrain a system capable of producing an effect specified by that form”.

  200. 200
    kairosfocus says:

    Jerad:

    We are dealing with a toxic, ideologically charged situation with an overbearing orthodoxy that has imposed questionable a priori materialism on science and has resorted to tactics that have unjustly harmed a lot of people.

    We cannot by ourselves end that.

    But, we can be reasonable and ask for reasonable standards of scientific warrant and serious answers on empirical support for driving dynamics for pivotal points such as OOL and OO body plans. That means, showing empirically backed cause that FSCO/I is capable of coming from blind chance and mechanical necessity. Until and unless that happens, the empirical evidence is plain on billions of cases: FSCO/I comes from design. The needle in haystack search challenge analysis on solar system or observed cosmos scale backs that up, once we see that specific function resulting from multiple, correctly arranged and coupled parts leads to narrow zones in the space of possible configs.

    What is happening is that in the teeth of such, you have been insisting on sticking to party line by exerting a glaring inconsistency on warrant. For the party-line, promissory notes and/or just sos on why we cannot observe the dynamics are okay. For the challenger, you demand not just normal inductive inference but independent evidence on an unobservable deep past.

    In short, you are demanding a standard that you know is unlikely to be met on inductive reasoning.

    This inconsistency can properly be described as selective hyperskepticism, and beyond a certain point where there is a willful disregard for duties of care to accuracy, truth, materiality and fairness, one is guilty of speaking with disregard to truth, hoping to profit by that which is misleading being perceived as truth, or even indulging in a continued misrepresentation under the like disregard of duty. (And note, I am NOT asserting that you have crossed this second threshold; I am pointing out that it is there as a moral hazard in the situation.)

    You may find such an analysis harsh, but please look above.

    I call attention back to the focal issue, inductive warrant in light of inference to best, empirically grounded explanation, of FSCO/I especially codes, coded string structures, algorithms [which, being goal directed are strongly associated with action towards intent], and associated organised implementing machinery.

    The DNA –> mRNA –> Ribosome + tRNA etc –> AA cahain –> protein system is a capital example.

    It is time for a rethink without a priori materialist ideological blinkers.

    KF

  201. 201
    Joe says:

    Jerad:

    If you want to come up with a better model then by all means do so.

    Unguided evolution doesn’t have a model.

    Why do you think there is some undefined limit to evolution?

    The evidence-> just look at Lenski’s experiment with well over 50,000 generations and no new proteins.

    Obvioulsy it is very limited.

    Your queries have been addressed if you could be bothered to look for the answers.

    I have looked, Jerad. Your position has nothing but mental midgets supporting it.

    The default, parsimonious assumption is that they are random until proven otherwise.

    LoL! “We don’t know” is the default, Jerad.


    And finally you have no idea what makes an organism what it is. That means you have no idea what it would take to make one.

    I’d say unguided, natural processes. As is supported by several lines of data.

    Then please present that evidence or admit that you are lying.

  202. 202
    LarTanner says:

    UPB @ 198,

    I have a few minutes before a 1:00 meeting, so I wanted to ask you about this:

    When I refer to an “information based” effect, I am talking about an effect that is originated by the local translation of an arrangement of matter, where the effect produced is physicochemically arbitrary to the arrangement.

    Can you please give some different examples of information-based effects in the sense you define above?

    This is related to my earlier request for a visual (illustrative example) in which your terms point to specific areas of the diagrammed system.

  203. 203
    Upright BiPed says:

    Larry, I am challenged on time as well. I will have to cut and paste:

    When you see an apple hanging from a tree, light waves are converted by the specialized organization of your eyes into a neural pattern. That pattern is a mechanically transcribed representation of the image before you. It is information (form) recorded into a material medium. It will then be sent to your visual cortex where it will be translated into a functional effect via neural (material) protocols that are already established there. There is no inexorable relationship between the pattern of impulses traveling through the optical nerve and the cognitive effect of “Hey it’s an apple”. In other words, there is no measurement you could take of that neural pattern and derive “apple”. The relationship between the representation and its effect is physicochemically-arbitrary, requiring the protocol in the visual cortex and brain to establish that relationship.

    If an ant colony should come under attack, the ants will produce an “alarm” pheromone to signal a coordinated response in the defense of their mound. The pheromone is a specific arrangement of matter which will evoke a functional effect within the ant’s sensory system. But the defense of an ant colony is not derivable from the chemistry of a pheromone; the relationship between them is context specific, requiring the receptors in the ant’s sensory system to recognize the individual pheromone and produce the response specified by that recognition. The proximate constraining factor on the system is not inexorable law alone, but the recognition of a specific arrangement in the signal medium, followed by a systematic protocol mapping that recognition to the effect it specifies.

    Another example might be non-biological, such as an information processing system created by intelligence. For instance, the first automated fabric looms used an arrangement of holes punched into paper cards as a means to control the patterns in the fabrics being produced. The holes in the cards served as a physical representation of the desired effects in the fabric. Sensors and pins within the machine would sense where the holes were punched, and it would use that information to change and control the colors of threads being woven into the fabric. In this instance, the configuration of holes served as the representation, and the configuration of sensors served as the protocol, leading to specified effects in the fabric. These three things (the holes in the cards, the configuration of the sensors, and the resulting effects in the fabric) are three entirely separate things, sharing a relationship not derived from inexorable physical law, but established locally by the protocol within the system.

  204. 204
    sigaba says:

    UB:

    Aren’t you concerned that there’s a bit of overgeneralization in this argument? Protocols and symbols are things people use, things that we push through communications networks and computers. I’m not sure it’s warranted to apply our understanding of these terms to pheromones or kinases. We can talk about them as “signaling” or “messaging,” and these metaphors are common, but aren’t they just metaphors?

  205. 205
    sigaba says:

    On this matter of overextending metaphors of “purposefulness” to biological entities, Colin McGinn wrote a very insightful review of Ray Kurzweil’s last book that makes this point better than me:

    Presumably (I am not entirely sure) Kurzweil would agree that such descriptions cannot be taken literally: individual neurons don’t say things or predict things or see things—though it is perhaps as if they do. People say and predict and see, not little bunches of neurons, still less bits of machines. Such anthropomorphic descriptions of cortical activity must ultimately be replaced by literal descriptions of electric charge and chemical transmission (though they may be harmless for expository purposes). Still, they are not scientifically acceptable as they stand.
    […]
    Here I must say something briefly about the standard language that neuroscience has come to assume in the last fifty or so years (the subject deserves extended treatment). Even in sober neuroscience textbooks we are routinely told that bits of the brain “process information,” “send signals,” and “receive messages”—as if this were as uncontroversial as electrical and chemical processes occurring in the brain. We need to scrutinize such talk with care. Why exactly is it thought that the brain can be described in these ways? It is a collection of biological cells like any bodily organ, much like the liver or the heart, which are not apt to be described in informational terms. It can hardly be claimed that we have observed information transmission in the brain, as we have observed certain chemicals; this is a purely theoretical description of what is going on. So what is the basis for the theory?

  206. 206
    sigaba says:

    Sorry, further:

    The answer must surely be that the brain is causally connected to the mind and the mind contains and processes information. That is, a conscious subject has knowledge, memory, perception, and the power of reason—I have various kinds of information at my disposal. No doubt I have this information because of activity in my brain, but it doesn’t follow that my brain also has such information, still less microscopic bits of it. Why do we say that telephone lines convey information? Not because they are intrinsically informational, but because conscious subjects are at either end of them, exchanging information in the ordinary sense. Without the conscious subjects and their informational states, wires and neurons would not warrant being described in informational terms.

  207. 207
    Upright BiPed says:

    sig,

    The observations are made at the material level; the words are merely descriptors. Consequently, they are quite defensible.

    If you believe there is an overgeneralization, you can point to it in detail, and I’ll respond later.

  208. 208
    sigaba says:

    The observations are made at the material level; the words are merely descriptors. Consequently, they are quite defensible.

    I would agree they’re defensible philosophically, however I’m not sure you’re using these terms merely descriptively. Like up at 198 you say:

    When I refer to an “information based” effect, I am talking about an effect that is originated by the local translation of an arrangement of matter, where the effect produced is physicochemically arbitrary to the arrangement. Let that sink in. This translation cannot occur without a relationship instantiated in the system.

    “Relationship” in this argument is referring to a “protocol,” an abstract concept which is germane to a discussion of communications systems but not to chemistry. We can’t really say something like this unless we say that, for example, it’s DNA’s “purpose” to make tRNA or copies of itself. You can’t suppose a “protocol” in the semiotic sense without teleology.

  209. 209
    Mung says:

    sigaba:

    You can’t suppose a “protocol” in the semiotic sense without teleology.

    so? 😀

    “Relationship” in this argument is referring to a “protocol,” an abstract concept which is germane to a discussion of communications systems but not to chemistry.

    Fine. So cells aren’t just bags of chemicals undergoing chemical reactions. You’ll get no argument from us ID’ists about that.

    But given physics and chemistry alone, how do systems of communication arise?

  210. 210
    Mung says:

    sigaba:

    Protocols and symbols are things people use, things that we push through communications networks and computers. I’m not sure it’s warranted to apply our understanding of these terms to pheromones or kinases. We can talk about them as “signaling” or “messaging,” and these metaphors are common, but aren’t they just metaphors?

    Wetware: A Computer in Every Living Cell

    People are beginning to notice. 🙂

  211. 211
    Mung says:

    LarTanner:

    Can you please give some different examples of information-based effects in the sense you define above?

    Flipping a light switch. Hitting keys on a keyboard. Punching in a phone number on a cell phone and hitting the send button.

  212. 212
    Alan Fox says:

    Upright Biped in 193

    To put it into perspective, you must return to the time on Earth when it was completely barren of the even a microbe of Life. That is the condition prior to the onset of information-based biological organization. From that material state, a mechanism is required to establish the physicochemically arbitrary relationships required for the translation of recorded information. Obviously, the mechanism cannot be Darwinian evolution, because it does not yet exist.

    I’m glad that you are now stating clearly that your argument is intended to refute a “natural” abiogenesis, an issue on which the theory of evolution can have nothing to say. Your argument therefore should be directed to those proposing ideas, mechanisms and scenarios that might explain (at least partially) how life on Earth may have come about. It would be a kindness to let them know they are wasting their time on such research.

    With your emphasis on “…a material universe, it [which] is not possible to transfer any form of recorded information into a material effect without using an arrangement of matter (or energy) as an information-bearing medium”, I wonder where you go after insisting on such a material universe, having ruled out non-material effects in your argument. I mean, what is the ID explanation for the origin of life on Earth, if we turned up in a solely material universe? That’s curtains for the cosmic designer according to Upright Biped, apparently!

  213. 213
    Alan Fox says:

    Oops

    …a material universe, [in which] it is not possible…

  214. 214
    Joe says:

    Alan Fox wallows in his willful ignorance:

    I’m glad that you are now stating clearly that your argument is intended to refute a “natural” abiogenesis, an issue on which the theory of evolution can have nothing to say.

    How life originated directly impacts how it evolved. If the OoL = design then it is evolution by design.

    IOW Alan loves his ignorasnce so much he refuses to listen to reason.

  215. 215
    LarTanner says:

    UBP @ 203,

    At last I might grasp the core of your semiotic argument. If I understand you, you are ultimately claiming that an arbitrary yet also systematic relationship exists between raw physical phenomena, on the one hand, and the biological processes used by organisms to translate perception of phenomena into specific “neural” configurations, on the other hand.

    I put “neural” in quotation marks because your point goes beyond what might physically happen in a human brain; your point is that any biological form must have a physical way of “knowing” the thing it perceives, and then responds to.

    I understand that you have follow-on points from this, but have I at last captured the central part of what you are arguing?

  216. 216
    Upright BiPed says:

    sigaba,

    UB: The observations are made at the material level; the words are merely descriptors. Consequently, they are quite defensible.

    sig: I would agree they’re defensible philosophically

    I’m glad of that. However, when a representation is described as an arrangement of matter that evokes a functional effect within a system, where the arrangement of the medium is physicochemically arbitrary to the effect it evokes – then I have described a physical thing that can be identified and modeled within a particular material system.

    “Relationship” in this argument is referring to a “protocol,” an abstract concept which is germane to a discussion of communications systems but not to chemistry.

    I don’t refer to a protocol as an abstract concept. Like the other elements of the system, it is described materially so that it may be identified within the system. In the case of the protocol, it is described as an arrangement of matter that physically establishes the otherwise non-existent relationship between the arrangement of the medium and the effect it evokes in the system.

    As far as the language of communications being relevant to chemistry; you show me a communication system, and I’ll show you a physical system (matter = chemistry) containing a local relationship creating unambiguous function in the living kingdom. Marshal Nirenberg used radioactive phenylalanine to establish its relationship to the input of polyuracil into the ribosome. He did so because that local relationship could not be established from the mere chemistry of the polyuracil. As the investigator, he did not impute that relationship on the system, he observed it in reality. If he had ignored those relationships, we would not know the genetic code today. But he wasn’t doing the experiment to ignore the relationships, he was doing it to discover them. That’s the point. Ignoring the relationship is an obvious non-starter; superseded in its ignorance only by overlooking the fact that if those relationships had not been instantiated in a physical system 3 billion years ago, we would not be here to ponder whether or not they’re anthropic projections.

  217. 217
    Mung says:

    Alan Fox:

    I’m glad that you are now stating clearly that your argument is intended to refute a “natural” abiogenesis, an issue on which the theory of evolution can have nothing to say.

    Yeah Upright BiPed! Thank you for finally making it clear that you’re describing what must actually be in place prior to the onset of Darwinian evolution.

    And thanks to Alan as well! For exposing, once again, for all to see, your complete ignorance of the argument put forth by Upright BiPed.

  218. 218
    Mung says:

    Alan, didn’t you previously admit that you were incapable of comprehending the argument that Upright BiPed makes and thus are unable to provide any relevant commentary on it? Since that still seems to be the case, why not just remain silent?

    If you have questions, UBP has been very gracious in answering.

  219. 219
    Jerad says:

    Me neither. I don’t think I implied otherwise. You are simply requiring that others provide a negative argument if you are to be moved off your current position.

    I don’t see what’s wrong with being very, very sure that natural processes can’t explain a situation before assuming an unmeasured, unobserved and undefined cause. But, whatever floats your boat.

    And then complaining that the only thing you are hearing is a negative argument.

    I could have phrased my statements more better. 🙂

    So, we need to prove to you that natural processes aren’t up to the job before you’ll consider design, but you want us to do so without arguing that natural processes aren’t up to the job? Again, your position would seem to be very well protected.

    Obviously you can’t PROVE natural forces couldn’t do something or other. But you can pretty damn sure. And I don’t think that’s the state of our knowledge at this point. You disagree.

    No. I only think it is unreasonable to require a negative argument and then complain that all you are hearing is a negative argument.

    Well, hopefully I’ve qualified my previous statement enough.

    As I’ve said, you appear to be protecting your position to an unreasonable degree. I’ve asked several times why you would do this. I think this is a fair question, but it is only one that you can answer. I do think it would be unfair for me to assign motives or to move from talking about what you’ve said to who you are. If you ever feel I am doing so, please point it out to me, because that’s not what I want to be about.

    I am not ‘protecting’ my position. I am confident it is correct but I am open to new data. But to overthrow the current model is going to take some a damn strong case against it. Especially one that hypothesises an undefined, unobserved and unlimited cause.

  220. 220
    Jerad says:

    We are dealing with a toxic, ideologically charged situation with an overbearing orthodoxy that has imposed questionable a priori materialism on science and has resorted to tactics that have unjustly harmed a lot of people.

    You are entitled to your opinion. But just because I disagree with you (as do many, many, many people) does not mean I subscribe to any invented conspiracy you envision.

    I still do not concede that there has any been a need for biological systems to search a large configuration space. AND that’s not the argument that evolutionary biology makes. Why you keep bringing it up is a mystery to me. If you had some academic credence behind the idea . . . have you tried to publish it?

    And, no matter what you think, there is no materialist/atheist plot to keep down the truth. If you want to discuss science, fair enough. But if you’re going to make up paranoid plots then I’m bailing.

  221. 221
    Jerad says:

    Unguided evolution doesn’t have a model.

    It does. You deny it does. Your choice. But it does make you look ignorant.

    What’s ID’s model then? You never seem to get around to elucidating one. Actually, no one ever seems to get around to it. Funny that. Can’t you guys agree on what you’re saying?

    Why do you think there is some undefined limit to evolution?

    The evidence-> just look at Lenski’s experiment with well over 50,000 generations and no new proteins.

    But new traits.

    So, let me get this straight . . . if you don’t observe something in a certain time then it can’t/won’t happen? Or . . .

    What is your ‘best by date’ for allowing natural processes their chance?

    I have looked, Jerad. Your position has nothing but mental midgets supporting it.

    There’s no need to be rude. I know you enjoy that but it does make you sound like a primary school bully.

    The default, parsimonious assumption is that they are random until proven otherwise.

    LoL! “We don’t know” is the default, Jerad.

    Is that your opinion about coin flipping as well? Or rolling fair dice? We don’t know if the results are random? Do you not understand the mathematical tests for randomness then? I guess you don’t.

    I’d say unguided, natural processes. As is supported by several lines of data.

    Then please present that evidence or admit that you are lying.

    Have you got evidence of another cause? Evidence independent of the artefact in question? If you don’t then . . . how do you know the ’cause’ exists?

    AND, what if you’re wrong and natural processes ARE capable of everything evolutionary biologists claim. Does that mean we can junk the idea of an intelligent designer?

  222. 222
    Jerad says:

    How life originated directly impacts how it evolved.

    How exactly? Once you have a viable population of basic replicators how exactly does the way they came into being affect how they develop via natural processes from that point on?

    As little handwaving as you can manage please.

  223. 223
    Mung says:

    Hi Upright BiPed,

    Have you read What Darwin Got Wrong yet?

    Interesting section on bees. If you haven’t read it yes I’ll think about typing it up. Seems they “just happened” to have “evolved” an optimal strategy for foraging.

  224. 224
    Upright BiPed says:

    Hello Mung.

    No regretfully I haven’t read it yet. If you have something typed up, you can send it to the contact at complexitycafe. I’m always happy to read more.

  225. 225
    Mung says:

    Teaser:
    Optimal foraging Strategies: the honeybees

    As von Frisch had taught us, at the start of a foraging period some individual honeybees go out foraging on their own (‘proactive’ search) and some (‘reactive’ searchers) stay in the hive awaiting information from returning foragers that is conveyed by the famous ‘bee dance’ (von Frisch, 1967). The issue to be solved was: which optimal percentage of individuals should go out and forage and which correspondingly optimal percentage should wait for information?

  226. 226
    Mung says:

    If you have something typed up, you can send it to the contact at complexitycafe.

    posted

  227. 227
    LarTanner says:

    UPB,

    Up in comment 215, I had a message for you that I hope you now have the time to respond to. Here’s what I said, slightly edited:

    UBP @ 203,

    At last I might grasp the core of your semiotic argument. If I understand you, you ultimately claim that an arbitrary yet also systematic relationship exists between raw physical phenomena, on the one hand, and the biological processes used by organisms to translate perception of phenomena into specific “neural” configurations, on the other hand.

    I put “neural” in quotation marks because your point goes beyond what might physically happen in a human brain; your point is that any biological form must have a physical way of “knowing” the thing it perceives, and then responds to.

    I understand you have follow-on points from this one, but have I captured the central part of what you are arguing?

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