5 Replies to “A reminder from Crick, March 19, 1953

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    kairosfocus says:

    A reminder from Crick, March 19, 1953

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    There is only one thing known to create such a code… a mind.

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    john_a_designer says:

    [Here is a comment I posted on another thread in a conversation with Eric Anderson which I think fits in the discussion here.]

    Eric Anderson,

    As with crystals, any form of “self-organization” as a process to allegedly help with OOL is a complete dead end.

    Charles B. Thaxton argued that information needs to be distinguished from just Order and Complexity. He comes up with three categories.

    Order: Periodic and Specified

    Complexity: Aperiodic and Unspecified

    Information: Aperiodic and Specified

    He gives some examples:

    Order: Periodic and Specified

    Examples of ordered structures are a repeating wallpaper or floor tile pattern, the hexagonal pattern appearing on the surface of heated oil, the single structure repeated over and over in a crystal, and a sequence of alphabetical letters ABABABABAB…. The characteristic feature of an ordered structure is the PERIODIC AND SPECIFIED arrangement of its constituent parts. That means the parts are arranged in a highly repetitious and specific fashion. Such structures have a low information content and require only a few instructions to specify them.

    Complexity: Aperiodic and Unspecified

    On the other hand, aperiodic structures, i.e., structures that lack periodicity, are called “complex.” Complex structures are of two types. The simplest type of complexity is a random structure. A random structure has no order, but, like an ordered structure, it has little information because few instructions are needed to specify it. By definition random structures are APERIODIC AND UNSPECIFIED, such as a lump of granite, a pile of leaves, a random polymer, or a sequence of letters drawn at random.

    Information: Aperiodic and Specified

    It is the second type of complexity, however, that is most relevant for biology. Written messages, artifacts, DNA, and proteins are all examples of specified complexity. By definition structures characterized by specified complexity are those whose constituent parts are arranged in an APERIODIC AND SPECIFIED manner. Such structures have a high information content, which means that many instructions are needed to specify them.

    As an example, if you wanted to print out a copy of Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address that begins “Four score and seven years ago…,” you could not find any brief set of instructions to give your computer. Your instructions would be as long as the famous address itself. You must specify every letter, one at a time, in the correct sequence. There are no shortcuts.

    It would be quite impossible to give a chemist a set of a few instructions to synthesize the DNA of even the simplest bacterium. The instructions would have to include every chemical letter, one by one. That would be several million of them. Rather than a few sentences of instructions, there would be enough to fill a large book.

    http://www.discovery.org/a/137

    So as to your point, yes indeed. Any kind of self-organization when it comes to explaining OoL is a dead end, because coded DNA and RNA cannot be created like a crystal or a snow flake with a short set of instructions. The key question that needs to be answered then by the naturalist/materialist is: what mindless natural process can create de novo complex, aperiodic specified order or information. Or, to state the question more succinctly: how can chemistry create code?

    https://uncommondescent.com/origin-of-life/jad-on-self-replicating-machines-and-ool/#comment-654305

    [So the argument being made by some our interlocutors is fallacious. Explaining just any kind of information (e.g. order or infromation that is the result of simple self-organization) does not explain information that is APERIODIC AND SPECIFIED. They should try to understand what we are arguing for before they try to argue against. Strawman arguments are either the result of ignorance or dishonesty. Neither one of those is a valid position from which to make a logical argument.]

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    Eric Anderson says:

    kf do you have a link/source handy for the letter?

    Thanks,

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