Biological technologies are fundamentally unlike any other because biology evolves. Bioengineering therefore requires novel design methodologies with evolution at their core. Knowledge about evolution is currently applied to the design of biosystems ad hoc. Unless we have an engineering theory of evolution, we will neither be able to meet evolution’s potential as an engineering tool, nor understand or limit its unintended consequences for our biological designs. Here, we propose the evotype as a helpful concept for engineering the evolutionary potential of biosystems, or other self-adaptive technologies, potentially beyond the realm of biology.Castle, S.D., Grierson, C.S. & Gorochowski, T.E. Towards an engineering theory of evolution. Nat Commun 12, 3326 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-021-23573-3
A friend in science says that he couldn’t have imagined Nature publishing anything like this thirty years ago.
How long will it be before people discover?: Engineering without engineers, taken seriously, means — among other things — that the consciousness of engineers is an illusion.
Otherwise, there is no design without intelligence.
The paper is open access.