Conservation of Information Intelligent Design

At Evolution News: Conservation of Information — The Idea

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William Dembski writes:

I am reviewing Jason Rosenhouse’s new book, The Failures of Mathematical Anti-Evolutionism (Cambridge University Press), serially. For the full series so far, go here.

Rosenhouse devotes a section of his book (sec. 6.10) to conservation of information, and prefaces it with a section on artificial life (sec. 6.9). These sections betray such ignorance and confusion that it’s best to clean the slate. I’ll therefore highlight some of the key problems with Rosenhouse’s exposition, but focus mainly on providing a brief history and summary of conservation of information, along with references to the literature, so that readers can determine for themselves who’s blowing smoke and who’s got the beef.

The importance of “conservation of information” can’t be overstated. The inability of nature to ratchet up information by any natural process in the universe is a hardwired property of the way the universe works.

Blowing Smoke

Rosenhouse’s incomprehension of conservation of information becomes evident in his run-up to it with artificial life. Anyone who has understood conservation of information recognizes that artificial life is a fool’s errand. 

The term artificial life has been around since the late 1980s, when Christopher Langton, working out of the Santa Fe Institute, promoted it and edited a conference proceedings on the topic. I was working in chaos theory at the time. I followed the Santa Fe Institute’s research in that area, and thus as a side benefit (if it may be called that) witnessed first-hand the initial wave of enthusiasm over artificial life. 

Artificial life is computer simulations that produce life-like virtual things, often via a form of digital evolution that mimics selection, variation, and heredity. The field has had its ups and downs over the years, initially generating a lot of enthusiasm, then losing it as people started to ask “What’s this got to do with actual biology?”, after which people forgot these nagging concerns, whereupon a new generation of researchers got excited about it, and so on to repeat the cycle. Rosenhouse, it seems, represents the latest wave of enthusiasm. As he writes: “[Artificial life experiments] are not so much simulations of evolution as they are instances of it. In observing such an experiment you are watching actual evolution take place, albeit in an environment in which the researchers control all the variables.” (p. 209) 

Smuggled Information

Conservation of information, as developed by my colleagues and me, arose in reaction to such artificial life simulations. We found, as we analyzed them (see here for several analyses that we did of specific artificial life programs such as Avida, which Rosenhouse lauds), that the information that researchers claimed to get out of these programs was never invented from scratch and never amounted to any genuine increase in information, but rather always reflected information that was inputted by the researcher, often without the researcher’s awareness. The information was therefore smuggled in rather than created by the algorithm.

Displacing Information

Darwinists are in the business of displacing information. Yet when they do, they typically act all innocent and pretend that they have fully accounted for all the information in question. Moreover, they gaslight anyone who suggests that biological evolution faces an information problem. Information follows precise accounting principles, so it cannot magically materialize in the way that Darwinists desire.

What my colleagues and I at the Evolutionary Informatics Lab found is that, apart from intelligent causation, attempts to explain information do nothing to alleviate, and may actually intensify, the problem of explaining the information’s origin. It’s like filling one hole by digging another, but where the newly dug hole is at least as deep and wide as the first one (often more so). The only exception is one pointed out by Douglas Robertson, writing for the Santa Fe Institute journal Complexity back in 1999: the creation of new information is an act of free will by intelligence. That’s consistent with intelligent design. But that’s a no-go for Darwinists.

Evolution News

121 Replies to “At Evolution News: Conservation of Information — The Idea

  1. 1
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    You can read Rosenhouse’s response to Dembski’s review at Panda’s Thumb.

    https://pandasthumb.org/

  2. 2
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    The idea that natural processes cannot create information is just silly.

    Take some hydrogen and oxygen and add some energy, (a good lightning strike will do nicely), and you get water molecules. Now you still have the oxygen and hydrogen, but you also have water, with it’s unique and useful properties. If that’s not new information, I don’t know what is.

  3. 3
    Eric Hedin says:

    To PK:
    The water molecule that forms out of hydrogen and oxygen represents a state of these 3 atoms that contains less information than when they were 3 separate atoms. The reason is that once the molecule is formed, the atoms’ positions and velocities are constrained by their bonding together into a single molecule. Every chemical reaction that proceeds naturally ends up in a lower energy state and a lower informational configuration.

  4. 4
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @Eric #3

    By that argument, a human body contains less information than the sum of the atoms that comprise it.

    Is that really what you want to hang your hat on?

  5. 5
    relatd says:

    PK at 2,

    You are promoting fiction. Chemical reactions do not create information of any kind.

  6. 6
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    Before:
    Hydrogen
    Oxygen

    After;
    Hydrogen
    Oxygen
    Water

    Clear enough?

  7. 7
    relatd says:

    PK at 6,

    I was considering Chemistry as my major in college. You obviously know nothing about it. I can take two clear liquids, pour one into the other, and the combination turns purple. Information created? No.

  8. 8
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    Water can cure my thirst.

    Not only is there new information, there is also new FUNCTION.

  9. 9
    Silver Asiatic says:

    PK

    The idea that natural processes cannot create information is just silly.

    That’s not the argument. “Processes” themselves are informational.
    What cannot create information is a random effect – a non-process.
    Events that occur through known natural laws are themselves information – and they produce information.
    Evolution is random.
    The supposed emergence of life from non-life is not a process – but a random accident.

  10. 10
    relatd says:

    PK at 8,

    You obviously don’t know when to quit. Water, as a molecule, has no idea you exist. Further, your body has no idea what water is – in a scientific sense. Yet, we are told human beings were designed and built by accident, by nobody.

  11. 11
    Fred Hickson says:

    Eric Hedin:

    The water molecule that forms out of hydrogen and oxygen represents a state of these 3 atoms that contains less information than when they were 3 separate atoms. The reason is that once the molecule is formed, the atoms’ positions and velocities are constrained by their bonding together into a single molecule. Every chemical reaction that proceeds naturally ends up in a lower energy state and a lower informational configuration.

    Noting Chuck Darwin’s comment, let me point out that “information” is not carried by individual molecules or atoms. Information is what we can gleam from studying them. (Yes DNA stores RNA and protein sequence information 😉 ) It is impossible for us to tell individual atoms of an isotope of an element apart. We can have no idea of history or future. But this is good news because all particles such as protons, neutrons, electrons are identical to each other. We can then observe, measure and describe regularities. The scientific approach works with atoms and molecules, too. Mix hydrogen gas with oxygen at a high enough temperature, and they will combust in a precise two-to-one ratio. But the properties of water are nothing like the properties of the elements hydrogen and oxygen. Water molecules are also impossible to tell apart, all having a bond angle of 106° due to the unequal distribution of electrons, the electrons spending more time nearer the oxygen atom causing enough charge distribution across the molecule that water molecules can stick together as the more electronegative oxygen atom can form a hydrogen bond with the electropositive hydrogen atom in an adjacent water molecule. Hydrogen bonding! A miracle, or just an emergent property that is essential to life on Earth?

  12. 12
    Fred Hickson says:

    Not only is there new information, there is also new FUNCTION.

    There is new function, new emergent properties but I question whether there is information. Information is a very political word here. I take it to mean something you learn that you didn’t know before. Water is essential to life, and we die quite quickly if we are unable to get any. But the properties of water remain unchanged from the dawn of the universe.

  13. 13
    relatd says:

    FH at 11,

    An elaborate text with a convoluted and very wrong conclusion. There is no such thing as “emergent” anything. Anyone can take the same chemicals, combine them, and get the same result for centuries. Why you also promote fiction is beyond me.

    By the way, hydrogen and oxygen will readily combust with a very small, like lighting a match, amount of energy.

  14. 14
    relatd says:

    FH at 12,

    There’s no new function. Water does not know life exists. It is not conscious.

  15. 15
    Fred Hickson says:

    There’s no new function. Water does not know life exists. It is not conscious.

    Well, exactly. All the physical and chemical properties of the Universe are fixed for the life of this Universe. But our knowledge of the Universe seems to grow inexorably.. The properties of water are effectively eternal. But the properties of water are not predictable from the properties of hydrogen and oxygen. They emerge from the exothermic reaction of the two elements that result in water molecules. This is why information is such a misleading term and best avoided except in the conventional sense of something learned or communicated.

  16. 16
    relatd says:

    FH at 15,

    Sigh. The “properties of water are not predictable”? Seriously? Where the heck do you get that from? Imagine this: If you have a blowtorch consisting of burning hydrogen and another with burning oxygen, when you combine the two, water will appear – every – single – time.

    Again with the “emerging.” No offense, but you are attempting to put a square peg in a round hole.

    And, I’ve seen the “gosh, we’re always learning new things about the Universe and maybe — maybe — one day we’ll find a planet that has monkeys floating in its atmosphere.” Followed by: “It could happen.”

  17. 17
    Fred Hickson says:

    By the way, hydrogen and oxygen will readily combust with a very small, like lighting a match, amount of energy.

    This is not news to me. On several occasions, friends have asked me why a radiator (I’m talking about a wet heating system with a gas or oil furnace) isn’t working well. I suggest checking for the presence of air in the radiator by releasing the air-purge valve. I also suggest a lighted match as the resultant “squeaky pop” as the hydrogen generated by iron-digesting bacteria is released and catches fire can be quite a surprise to the unsuspecting.

  18. 18
    Fred Hickson says:

    Relatd:

    If you have a blowtorch consisting of burning hydrogen and another with burning oxygen, when you combine the two, water will appear – every – single – time.

    That is precisely what I am saying.

  19. 19
    relatd says:

    FH at 17,

    “… hydrogen generated by iron-digesting bacteria…”

    Wake me when you have something new.

  20. 20
    relatd says:

    FH at 18,

    If that was precisely what you were saying I’d have no reason to reply.

  21. 21
    Fred Hickson says:

    Also looking at Jason Rosenhouse’s reply to Bill Dembski’s criticism of his book at The Panda,s Thumb it seems Rosenhouse and I are in full agreement over the validity of information as a concept that can be applied to evolution. Quoting Rosenhouse:

    If you now want to play gotcha, and argue that evolution did not really create information but only transformed preexisting information in the environment, then you are welcome to do so. However, it is no great accomplishment to make this observation. If you are just saying that nature has to be a certain way for evolution to work then you can just assert it as obvious without further argument. You do not need to write lengthy books to defend this claim, or to deploy difficult mathematical theorems in support of it.

    There’s more!

    http://pandasthumb.org/archive.....ponse.html

  22. 22
    Fred Hickson says:

    If that was precisely what you were saying I’d have no reason to reply.

    I said
    the physical and chemical properties of particles, fields, atoms, elements, molecules are fixed for the lifetime of this universe. but we may not yet be aware of the emergent properties that result from new (to us) combinations and circumstances. Is that new information or was the information fixed at the beginning of the Universe?

  23. 23
    relatd says:

    FH at 21,

    What incredibly bad logic. Evolution happened because… ? No answer to that one. Just, the math is wrong. Based on what? The computer simulation is right. Based on what?

    Since the process for creating life is unknown, why does anyone assume anything about a blind, unguided process? Comments are made like we observe this and we observe that, but is that actually factual? If I was a bacteria exposed to a harmful substance, I can automatically start swapping genetic material with my neighbors, referred to as Horizontal Gene Transfer, and, though bacteria have no brain, a few – or none – might survive exposure. On the very off chance that a beneficial mutation occurs, the odds of it “climbing Mount Improbable” are non-existent since this new information must become fixed in the population, in others words, it must be inherited. This – we are told – is followed by billions of unguided “improvements” until we get to man.

    And the person replying mentions tossing a coin? A coin only has two sides. I find it distressing to read such sloppy thinking posing as a “real,” well thought out reply to a review of this or any book.

  24. 24
    relatd says:

    FH at 22,

    So, ‘we don’t know if’ is the answer? Back to the ’emergent’ nonsense? Or ‘maybe this, maybe that; we just don’t know”?

    I’ve read a lot of speculative fiction and work with professional writers. I’ve been in creative meetings about such things, and trust me, if you said what you just wrote, you would be asked to leave.

  25. 25
    Fred Hickson says:

    No worries, Relatd, truth is stranger than fiction. But two molecules of hydrogen react with one molecule of oxygen atom to produce two molecules of water, always have, always will. Hooray for the hydrogen bond, I say, as I certainly wouldn’t exist without it.

  26. 26
    relatd says:

    FH at 25,

    Truth? I was referring to the speculative elements. You know, like ’emergent’…

  27. 27
    Fred Hickson says:

    Truth? I was referring to the speculative elements.

    But elements are not speculative. They are physical and have properties we can measure very precisely. Those properties are fixed for the lifetime of this Universe. I’m not sure you have understood the point I am making about emergence.

    There are 92 naturally occurring chemical elements. We can refer to them with an atomic number, starting with 1 for hydrogen. The number corresponds to the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom of the element. It still amazes me that the whole of chemistry emerges from those numbers.

  28. 28
    relatd says:

    You used the word “emergence.” Over and out.

  29. 29
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @Relatd #28

    I don’t know why you rail against the concept of emergence. It just means that the whole can be more than the sum of the parts, which is a blindingly obvious feature of just about all of our universe.

    The term is not meant to be a full explanation of HOW the new properties emerge, only that they did.

  30. 30
    asauber says:

    “The term is not meant to be a full explanation”

    PK,

    It’s not any explanation at all.

    Andrew

  31. 31
    kairosfocus says:

    Desperate to trivialise and marginalise functionally specific, complex information and/or associated information beyond 500 – 1,000 bits. A back door admission that FSCO/I is decisive against them.

  32. 32
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @KF #31

    Creationists desperate to dress up religion to look like science. A noteworthy admission of the power that science wields as compared to superstitious nonsense.

  33. 33
    jerry says:

    Creationists desperate to dress up religion to look like science

    You are apparently ignorant of what ID is about.

    ID has nothing to do with religion. It is actually better science than any of the science taught at 99.99% of the universities on the planet.

    You should just ask questions rather than making judgments on things you know little about.

  34. 34
    kairosfocus says:

    PK, you know better, speak with regard to truth and right reason. First, start with the string data structure, four state per character coded information in D/RNA, and how in part it is algorithmic. This is language using alphanumeric characters [I update Crick’s alphabet reference], and expressing stepwise goal directed procedures with halting, thus purpose. You can hyperskeptically deny, attempt to smear and obfuscate all you want but those are observable objective facts that are based on Nobel Prize winning work, highest awards for scientific achievements. I infer on this that we here have chapter zero text of earth history, to be read against the backdrop of a cosmos fine tuned in many ways for life, further warranting an inference to design of life in context of a cosmos designed to support life. And, if you want to imagine that the text in D/RNA is “religious text,” then so be it, you have therefore religious text before and partly constitutive of cell based life, on such an assertion. KF

  35. 35
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Talking about religion, darwinists declared that life emerged from chemicals without delivering any scientific evidence .
    The “scientists” made this declaration based on their “optimism” 😆 “soon will be proven” in lab . Nothing yet. We waiting for 100 years. No evidence but I wonder why they didn’t discarded their false allegation that life emerged from chemicals when they didn’t keep their word to provide the evidence? They kept this lie for 100 years and still continue to do so . Darwinism is a religion or better said is a kind of satanism(see influence of darwinism over Hitler ,Stalin, Marx, eugenics, depravity, abortion , millions of deaths of born and unborn, etc )

  36. 36
    relatd says:

    PK at 32,

    Power. That word I hate. Science has no power. ID is the correct answer. Evolution is sinking out of sight.

  37. 37
    Pater Kimbridge says:

    @Relatd #36

    Science has no power? But I thought ID WAS science.
    ???

  38. 38
    relatd says:

    PK at 37,

    ID is science. Evolution is speculation.

  39. 39
    Querius says:

    From the OP:

    What my colleagues and I at the Evolutionary Informatics Lab found is that, apart from intelligent causation, attempts to explain information do nothing to alleviate, and may actually intensify, the problem of explaining the information’s origin. It’s like filling one hole by digging another, but where the newly dug hole is at least as deep and wide as the first one (often more so).

    Nice analogy. This is also why “Methinks it is like a weasel” is also “smuggled-in” information in that the rejections involve intrinsic filters to an artificially specified target rather than random genetic drift.

    In my opinion, there are two problems:

    1. “Shannon information” doesn’t have anything to do with information per se, but rather it deals with the limits of data compression.

    2. I’m not sure that anyone really understands a way to specify or compare amounts of information. Specified functionality might come close, but that depends on context.

    For example, consider a very simple bottle/can opener such as a “church key.” Its shape might capture an incredibly elegant design that incorporates massive human interface and environmental data for broad functionality at an extremely low price. But how would you measure the amount of information in the design on a planet without bottles, cans, or humans?

    Complexity might mask information. For example, compare our incredibly elegant church key with a Swiss Army knife. While the Swiss Army knife is more complex, the church key might do a much better job due to the larger amount of design information incorporated in it.

    Another problem emerges when one tries to create a self-sustaining artificial ecosystem. I’ve come to learn that my failed attempts were typical: artificial ecosystems tend to quickly destabilize, oscillate, and crash its carrying capacity. This also has to “evolve” along with the organisms in that ecosystem.

    This aspect of evolution doesn’t seem to get a lot of attention, also there’s been research in the subject. For example
    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/290261829_Artificial_ecosystem_with_competition_and_evolution

    I don’t have broad experience with such simulations, how their parameters are adjusted (hopefully realistic rather than hacked), and what their success rate looks like under changing conditions.

    If anyone here has had research experience with ecosystem simulation, would you care to comment?

    -Q

  40. 40
    ET says:

    Fred vHickson:

    But two molecules of hydrogen react with one molecule of oxygen atom to produce two molecules of water, always have, always will.

    Two water molecules. There isn’t any water when you have just two molecules of H2O.

  41. 41
    ET says:

    Please tell us how natural processes produced the elements, such as hydrogen and oxygen. That means you have to tell us how natural processes produced gravity, the strong and weak nuclear forces and EM. If you can’t do that then you only have question-begging.

    Natural processes only exist in nature and as such could not have produced it. Whoops…

  42. 42
    JVL says:

    ET: Please tell us how natural processes produced the elements, such as hydrogen and oxygen. That means you have to tell us how natural processes produced gravity, the strong and weak nuclear forces and EM. If you can’t do that then you only have question-begging.

    Of course, you can’t say how all those things happened. You have a double standard when it comes to explanations.

  43. 43
    Seversky says:

    If there is a conservation law of information and it can neither be created nor destroyed then it must always have existed, in which there is no requirement for a creator.

    But is information conserved?

    I found this blogpost which is an informative discussion of the issues. For example, there is the question about information going into black holes but not coming out, which would suggest information is not conserved:

    This idea is at the basis of on the great controversies of modern physics, Stephen Hawking’s ‘black hole paradox’. Once anything drops into a black hole, it disappears from our universe; the black hole increases in mass, but that tells us nothing about the nature of what has gone in; it, and the information it carries, appear to have disappeared from the universe. Howking showed that black holes emit a form of radiation, which will eventually cause the black hole to dissipate, returning its mass/energy to the universe, But, according to Hawking, the nature of this radiation is the same regardless of what has gone into the black hole; information is not returned to the universe, and is therefore not conserved. This is disputed by some physicists, and the issue is far from resolved, despite Hawking’s claims over the years to have solved the problem. This is an illustration of how the concept of information- though in a different guise from that familiar to the library/information science – is at the heart of physical questions.

  44. 44
    relatd says:

    Seversky at 43,

    Still running away from the Creator?

    “… in which [case] there is no requirement for a creator.”

    Stephen Hawking proposed interesting theories but it requires a bit of breaking down when it comes to black holes. The point where an object is pulled into a black hole is defined. The so-called ‘event horizon.’ That the black hole does not gain mass is false. The intensity of the pull of gravity means anything pulled in is reduced to sub-atomic components and even ‘packets of energy’ like light cannot escape. This suggests that matter is gradually reduced to energy and is bled off into space.

    Everything with physical properties is reduced to energy.

  45. 45
    Querius says:

    Relatd @44,

    Still running away from the Creator?

    Yes, obviously. The logic goes like this:
    1. Information cannot be created or destroyed.
    2. Information exists.
    3. Therefore (since God doesn’t exist), information must always have existed and you don’t need God to have created it.

    I’ve always had trouble imagining Hawking radiation solving anything. If one of a pair of virtual particles crosses the event horizon and the other does not, the one that “escapes” will still wind up in crossing the event horizon a tiny fraction of a second later due to . . . (drum roll) the gravity of the black hole (which doesn’t magically switch off outside the event horizon).

    Everything with physical properties is reduced to energy.

    And, according to Einstein, that energy warps space-time, commonly known as “gravity.”
    https://physics.stackexchange.com/questions/680704/how-much-energy-is-there-in-curved-spacetime-of-a-black-hole

    -Q

  46. 46
    relatd says:

    Querius at 45,

    With all due respect, Einstein is no longer a fully informed idea. Gravity is not the whole idea. A black hole is essentially a matter to energy converter. Matter goes in, a reaction due to high gravity, occurs and energy, in the form of some type of radiation, bleeds off the black hole. Why the intense gravity does not destroy the black hole in an explosion is unknown. It will just dissipate after a time. Slowly losing actual mass due to the release of this unknown, undefined type of energy/radiation.

  47. 47
    Querius says:

    Relatd @46,

    Gravitational lensing is evidence that gravity warps space-time. I don’t object to the idea of mass-energy converting mass into energy in a black hole , but the event horizon prevents any radiation escaping from event horizon. Hawking proposed the dissipation of black holes from an extremely slow radiation (Hawking radiation) of half of a pair of virtual particles just outside the event horizon.

    I don’t see how Hawking radiation helps regarding the dissipation of black holes. Virtual particles still cannot escape the event horizon. The “evaporation” analogy is misleading in my opinion. But a contributor to the Physics Stack Exchange puts it like this:

    The particle that enters the event horizon has been trapped in an infinite potential gravitational well, so can be thought to have negative energy. So anti-intuitively (wait, what part of all this is even intuitive!), the particle left lurking outside the absorbs some energy from the black hole, (thus conserving mass-energy) gets converted into a “classical” photon and escapes the vicinity of the black hole. Thus little by little, such events cause a black hole to effectively “evaporate” and diminish.

    I’m not sure I understand what “negative energy” is (antimatter? anti-energy?) or how the other half of a pair of virtual particles absorbs energy from a black hole to convert it into a photon.

    The dissipation of energy within a black hole potentially involves plasma jets (traveling close to the speed of light, but still outside the event horizon), thermal radiation (conduction?), spin, charge, frame-dragging, deformation of its magnetic field, deformation of space-time (including gravitational waves), and maybe even quantum tunneling.

    As more data becomes available, maybe we’ll get a better idea about the dynamics of black holes, both inside and outside the event horizon.

    -Q

  48. 48
    relatd says:

    Querious at 47,

    “Hawking radiation reduces the mass and rotational energy of black holes and is therefore also theorized to cause black hole evaporation. Because of this, black holes that do not gain mass through other means are expected to shrink and ultimately vanish. For all except the smallest black holes, this would happen extremely slowly. The radiation temperature is inversely proportional to the black hole’s mass, so micro black holes are predicted to be larger emitters of radiation than larger black holes and should dissipate faster.[4]”

    The “evaporation” of a black hole involves sub-atomic/quantum effects. The interaction between the black hole and the event horizon is not understood. But the black hole cannot just sit there since its high gravity and conversion of matter to energy involves a system that is not yet defined. I will speculate that a black hole is like a candle burning down. The wax disappearing as it is burned off.

  49. 49
    ET says:

    Earth to JVL- AGAIN, it is you and yours which claim to have the mechanisms to account for what we observe. YOURS is the mechanistic position. Stop whining when we point out that we are still waiting, and your dog no longer hunts. Yours is the bottom-up approach. If you cannot withstand the scrutiny, and you can’t, perhaps you should just leave.

    The science of ID is in the detection and study of design in nature. We claim to have a methodology for making the determination between natural and artificial. That is what we have demonstrated. So, we have upheld our requirements. You, not so much.

  50. 50
    ET says:

    JVL:

    Of course, you can’t say how all those things happened.

    True. That’s because it is still well above our comprehension, duh. But right now, I would say it all starts with the want to do it and the information to do it.

    To us, science is a way of understanding the Intelligent Design and what nature does in it. To you, science is about discovering how nature did it. Even when there isn’t any evidence that nature did. But it doesn’t matter as you and yours force science to start with a conclusion. And that is what dogma does.

  51. 51
    JVL says:

    ET: AGAIN, it is you and yours which claim to have the mechanisms to account for what we observe. YOURS is the mechanistic position.

    Design itself does nothing; it has to be implemented which is a mechanistic process. Unless you believe in magic or miracles.

    The science of ID is in the detection and study of design in nature. We claim to have a methodology for making the determination between natural and artificial.

    Yes, that’s what you claim. BUT, part of your methodology is establishing that natural processes cannot explain some phenomenon. First of all, that is trying to ‘prove’ a negative. Secondly, that is not testing ID; that’s testing unguided evolutionary theory. Third, how can you possibly rule out natural processes UNLESS you assume that you are aware of all the available natural processes and can account for everything they can accomplish? Also, it’s very, very clear that no actual study of design is happening. It’s been a while since it was claimed that design had been detected but absolutely no one has published any work based on the designs that have been claimed to have been detected casting any light on the process of design implementation, the time when design was implemented, where design was implemented, who or what implemented design (and no, I don’t mean a particular individual since I’m sure you will gleefully misinterpret that point again; I mean ‘who’ as in what group or type of individuals). This is why ID is accused of being a science stopper: it has not led to any further scientific work since it was claimed design had been detected. There are no publications, there is no ID research agenda, no one is applying for grants or funding. Nothing.

    True. That’s because it is still well above our comprehension, duh. But right now, I would say it all starts with the want to do it and the information to do it.

    What does that mean? It’s just vague statements without any explanations which give insight.

    To us, science is a way of understanding the Intelligent Design and what nature does in it. To you, science is about discovering how nature did it.

    Science is about producing or observing repeatable, observer independent results which can be documented. I asked before what kind of test could be done for any kind of ID effect. Something that anyone with the right equipment could do, something which was clear and unambiguous, something which didn’t depend on the person doing the test or observation. Remember what happened? No one came up with anything.

    And yet, we’re told over an over and over again that ID is a ‘better’ explanation. But a) it doesn’t actually explain or predict anything specific enough to be testable and b) it has failed to generate any kind of productive research. The only ‘research’ is geared towards arguing that natural processes are too improbable (note: not impossible but just unlikely) to have come up with some specific result. Aside from being a negative argument and not an actual test of ID’s ability to create new structures or influence development it’s really just research about unguided evolutionary processes not ID itself.

    IF ID is science then do some science. So far you’re mostly just making claims and whining when people think you’ve haven’t actually established your case. You, ET, don’t actually do any ID research. Neither does Kairosfocus or Upright BiPed or Bornagain77 or Asuaber or Relatd or Mung or, even, Dr Dembski or Dr Behe. It’s all just combing through actual unguided evolution research and claiming this or that result upholds your view. When are you going to propose an experiment testing a prediction of ID and carry it out?

  52. 52
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Design itself does nothing; it has to be implemented which is a mechanistic process. Unless you believe in magic or miracles.

    Why don’t you implement a cell in a mechanistic way. We wait. 😆

  53. 53
    JVL says:

    LCD: Why don’t you implement a cell in a mechanistic way. We wait. ?

    I note that you also don’t seem to actually do any science although you claim to understand it better than those who actually do research and experiments.

    Can you propose an experiment or test which will check an ID prediction? Something that is not, actually, just trying to show that you don’t think unguided processes are up to the job. Give me a testable, ID prediction and then we can test it.

  54. 54
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Code. Language. Symbol.Sign. All these are in the cell and are evidences for ID by default. We know for sure that only intelligence creates a functional code.
    Darwinists say that randomness can create life(code) but they fail to bring evidences.

  55. 55
    JVL says:

    LCD: Code. Language. Symbol.Sign. All these are in the cell and are evidences for ID by default. We know for sure that only intelligence creates a functional code.
    Darwinists say that randomness can create life(code) but they fail to bring evidences.

    None of which answers my question: can you propose a testable ID prediction that we can test? If ID has power to affect development then you’d think you could predict how it would affect a particular situation. Can you give an example that we could then check?

  56. 56
    Silver Asiatic says:

    You can’t test Blind Watchmaker hypothesis.

  57. 57
    JVL says:

    Silver Asiatic: You can’t test Blind Watchmaker hypothesis.

    My question is: can you propose a testable ID based prediction that we can test? You dodged that question. Everyone has dodged that question. Why is that? It’s easy to say yes or no is it not? Changing the subject is not an answer, it’s an evasion.

  58. 58
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    None of which answers my question: can you propose a testable ID prediction that we can test?

    Haha, yes it answers but your materialist religion forbid you to accept an answer that involves intelligence(code, genetic language ) . When you say a prediction that we can test do you use intelligence or randomness ? 🙂 If you use intelligence/reason that you didn’t create …I have bad news for you.

  59. 59
    JVL says:

    LCD: When you say a prediction that we can test do you use intelligence or randomness ?

    Use whatever you like. Give me a prediction made by ID that we can test to see if it comes about.

  60. 60
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    @JVL : you didn’t get it: you use intelligence (your mind) to deny intelligence(ID) . Self-defeateting.
    You are like a fish that make the case against water ignoring that himself is in the water.

  61. 61
    jerry says:

    Give me a prediction made by ID that we can test to see if it comes about

    Been on the table for several years.

    Ignored by both sides of argument. Here is Ann Gauger responding though.

    Would destroy Darwinian Evolution which is logically impossible.

    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/do-nylon-eating-bacteria-show-that-new-functional-information-is-easy-to-evolve/#comment-631468

    Aside: over the years I left several links to Jurgen Brosius’s work but those links were removed by the university in Germany he was associated with. As far as I know he is still alive but I cannot find links to any of his works but the articles were published and exist. He was introduced to UD by Allen MacNeill about 12-14 years ago as to how Evolution works.

               Prediction: will be ignored.

    Aside2: Evolution is really the side show of ID. The fine tuning of universe and Earth are the heart of ID. Next is OOL. Evolution which generates 98% of comments should be down the list though it’s very interesting.

    Aside3: prediction – no anti ID person will provide any evidence against Id

  62. 62
    ET says:

    JVL:

    Design itself does nothing; it has to be implemented which is a mechanistic process. Unless you believe in magic or miracles.

    Non-sequitur and cowardly response. Try again:

    AGAIN, it is you and yours which claim to have the mechanisms to account for what we observe. YOURS is the mechanistic position. Stop whining when we point out that we are still waiting, and your dog no longer hunts. Yours is the bottom-up approach. If you cannot withstand the scrutiny, and you can’t, perhaps you should just leave.

    The science of ID is in the detection and study of design in nature. We claim to have a methodology for making the determination between natural and artificial.

    Yes, that’s what you claim.

    It is a fact. Your ignorance is still not an argument

    True. That’s because it is still well above our comprehension, duh. But right now, I would say it all starts with the want to do it and the information to do it.

    What does that mean?

    It is how designing is done, duh.

    Science is about producing or observing repeatable, observer independent results which can be documented.

    Yet you and yours don’t have that! Get to work!!!

    It is clear that no one is using blind watchmaker evolution for anything. ID’s concepts are used in the form of genetic algorithms.

  63. 63
  64. 64
    ET says:

    For JVL to choke on:

    Intelligent Design predicts the same basic thing as archaeology and forensic science- namely, that when intelligent agencies act, they tend to leave traces of their actions behind. These traces may be uncovered at a later date when someone is trying to determine a cause for the effect they are observing and want to investigate. Intelligent Design says that irreducible complexity, specified complexity and complex specified information are such traces with respect to life on Earth. And we say that because in every instance that we have observed such traces and knew the cause, it was always via intelligent agency volition.

    AND, just as with archaeology and forensic science, all one has to do to refute that they are traces for ID, is to demonstrate that nature is up to the task. Which would be quite the feat seeing that nature had already been eliminated. It would be like glaciers and floods producing Stonehenge after centuries of saying it’s an artifact.

    And we can predict, based on ID, there are or was, other intelligent beings in the universe.

  65. 65
    JVL says:

    ET: AGAIN, it is you and yours which claim to have the mechanisms to account for what we observe. YOURS is the mechanistic position.

    Design implementation requires a mechanism. Design doesn’t just poof into existence.

    The science of ID is in the detection and study of design in nature. We claim to have a methodology for making the determination between natural and artificial.

    Which depends on first ruling out all natural processes which a) is an attempt to ‘prove’ a negative and b) how can you be sure you have accounted for all natural processes and their effects? Oh and it’s also a test of unguided evolution not a test of ID. Which means your stance depends on what work other people do and not on any science done by ID supporters. Which is why there are no ID journals or a research agenda. There’s nothing to research. It’s all dependent on your probabilistic arguments that unguided processes are too unlikely. Again, a negative argument.

  66. 66
    jerry says:

    Prediction: whenever logic and evidence are provided by ID people, the reaction is disingenuous/irrelevant comments by anti ID people.

    Nearly 100% since I have been commenting here 16 years ago.

  67. 67
    ET says:

    JVL:

    Design implementation requires a mechanism.

    Design is a mechanism. Learn how to use a dictionary. Agency volition is also a mechanism.

    We do NOT have to know how or who BEFORE determining that intelligent design exists. You are a scientifically illiterate whining infant

    Which depends on first ruling out all natural processes which a) is an attempt to ‘prove’ a negative and b) how can you be sure you have accounted for all natural processes and their effects?

    That is how archaeology and forensic science do it. Your ignorance is still not an argument.

    Again, for JVL, the learning impaired:

    CSI, IC and SC are all POSITIVE evidence for ID

  68. 68
    ET says:

    Another POSITIVE case for ID:

    “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.”- Dr Behe

  69. 69
    Silver Asiatic says:

    JVL

    My question is: can you propose a testable ID based prediction that we can test?

    You’re proposing a blind, unintelligent cause as the source of what we observe.
    As I said – your proposal is untestable.
    You can’t test Blind Watchmaker hypothesis.

  70. 70
    jerry says:

    You can’t test Blind Watchmaker hypothesis

    Yes, you can!

    The two current theories for naturalized Evolution are adaptation and exaptation. Both can be tested. ID predicts that neither will be valid.

  71. 71
    Querius says:

    Silver Asiatic and Jerry,

    JVL writes:

    And yet, we’re told over an over and over again that ID is a ‘better’ explanation. But a) it doesn’t actually explain or predict anything specific enough to be testable and b) it has failed to generate any kind of productive research.

    I don’t know how many times I provided explanations and examples of ID vs. Darwinism here, but to no avail. JVL among others haven’t ever addressed them. Nevertheless, we see the identical unsupported assertions repeatedly posted. No synapses involved. Nothing learned.

    Do you see why I think the behavior of many of these detractors is like arguing with a chatbot (trollbot)? Ok, how about this response:

    And yet, we’re told over an over and over again that Darwinism is a ‘better’ explanation. But a) it doesn’t actually explain or predict anything specific enough to be testable and b) it has failed to generate any kind of productive research.

    So every time we get a vacuous post filled with empty assertions, why not simply mirror them? It saves a lot of time and won’t make any difference to them anyway . . .

    -Q

  72. 72
    jerry says:

    predict anything specific enough to be testable

    But it does and can be tested.

    Ann Gauger thought it would be a lot of work to do so but it’s testable. But I can tell you, no one is interested. That is the more interesting question. Neither side wants the confusion to disappear.

    I generally ignore the trolls. It’s only when their particular question can be used to make another point. In terms of JVL, I answered his question this morning and he ignored what I said. He then makes the same assertion on another thread which allowed a chance at emphasis on how disingenuous he is.

    Naturalized Evolution is definitely testable using known techniques.

    He along with all the other anti ID trolls don’t really believe what they espouse. Their behavior is proof of that.

  73. 73
    Silver Asiatic says:

    You cannot test the hypothesis that a blind, mindless, unintelligent mechanism is the cause.

    The two current theories for naturalized Evolution are adaptation and exaptation. Both can be tested. ID predicts that neither will be valid.

    This is a test for ID, not for the Blind Watchmaker. ID states that only intelligence can be the cause. We can produce the effect by intelligence. Anti-IDists can try to refute and falsify ID.

    However, in reality, evidence for “naturalized Evolution” is not evidence for a blind, unintelligent cause. There is no direct test of the cause or of its foresight or intelligence. Just because a natural cause produced something does not mean that cause was not intelligently designed.
    For the sake of the atheists in the scientific facilities, we just accept that “if something happens by a natural process then it was not intelligently designed” – but there’s no direct evidence for that.
    Otherwise, if for example, it could be shown that evolution produced something, would that be evidence that “God was not involved”?
    Again you cannot test the Blind Watchmaker hypothesis, even though evolutionary textbooks falsely claim that evolution is a blind, mindless process.

    “By coupling undirected, purposeless variation to the blind, uncaring process of natural selection, Darwin made theological or spiritual explanations of the life processes superfluous.”
    (Evolutionary Biology, by Douglas J. Futuyma (3rd ed., Sinauer Associates Inc., 1998), p. 5.)

    The test needs to show an “undirected, purposeless, blind, uncaring” process at work.

  74. 74
    Querius says:

    Silver Asiatic @73,

    I think it’s hopeless.

    If someone presents an undirected, purposeless, blind, and uncaring Darwinist with a 1948 Omega Seamaster self-winding watch, they will say that its internal mechanisms simply move with undirected, purposeless, blind, uncaring processes driven by an undirected, purposeless, blind, uncaring spring wound up by undirected, purposeless, blind, uncaring pivoted weight subjected to random motions by its wearer. Thus, there’s no intelligent design involved.

    Certainly, there’s no experiment with the watch that might convince them otherwise. Can you think of any?

    Each new watch they discover further strengthens their belief. Every gear musta evolved over billions of years from random shapes of which only the perfectly symmetrical final gear musta been conserved. And naturally, these complex gears all musta started out as simple wheels for motility, gradually evolving different and more complex functions and partnerships in tiny increments, most of which are currently lost or undiscovered.

    And surely with the multiverse together with the anthropic principle over billions and billions of years, such watches were inevitable!

    -Q

  75. 75
    jerry says:

    I think it’s hopeless.

    No, it’s testable.

    It’s not an experiment but an analysis of genomes. It would take a lot of effort but is straightforward. Not hard to understand.

    The Blind Watchmaker has implications. Specify implications.

    So if P = Blind Watchmaker and Q= implications of Blind Watchmaker then the hypothesis is P=> Q

    Not Q nullifies P or Blind Watchmaker.

    This is a test of ID in the sense that ID predicts certain things about genomes of two species. ID predicts certain characteristics of these genomes will not exist. These characteristics are necessary for Evolution to,have taken place. If they don’t exist then it falsifies Blind Watchmaker and supports ID.

  76. 76
    Silver Asiatic says:

    Querius

    Certainly, there’s no experiment with the watch that might convince them otherwise. Can you think of any?

    Exactly – I can’t think of any at all. They just assert that anything they see came from a “blind, unintelligent cause”. Even if one organism evolved into another or even if life could come from non-life, none of that proves that nature is driven by a mindless cause.
    You have to have a test to show blind, mindlessness at work in nature.
    It’s not just evolution or origin of life.
    Michael Denton thinks that the non-living substance of water alone gives evidence of having been intelligently designed (with all the amazing life-sustaining properties of water all built into a simple chemical compound).
    So, the anti-IDists would say “rain came down in the savannah – that’s obviously a blind, unintelligent event”.

  77. 77
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    What is the difference between randomness and ignorance ? When a scientist have no clue about some complex processes instead to admit it that have no clue the scientist hide his ignorance using the randomness card. Whenever we hear the word randomness in a scientific paper we know there is no real science involved.
    Randomness argument is a science stopper , a non-explanation , a mask for ignorance.
    “If we can’t explain it logically then must be random.” says the scientist. 🙂
    If we detect a purpose/teleology/function there is nothing random in the neighbourhood.

  78. 78
    JVL says:

    Jerry: In terms of JVL, I answered his question this morning and he ignored what I said. He then makes the same assertion on another thread which allowed a chance at emphasis on how disingenuous he is.

    That was not my intention. I must have missed your reply or forgotten about it. My fault, either way. I shall look for your answer.

  79. 79
    JVL says:

    LCD: What is the difference between randomness and ignorance ?

    Usually random means that there is no way to predict a particular outcome BUT in the case of rolling a die or flipping a coin there are still constraints on what outcomes are possible. There are ways of mathematically analysing a class or series of events to determine if they are truly random. Anyway, it means you’ve studied the phenomena and determined that it’s random.

    Ignorance means you probably haven’t even bothered to try and find out.

  80. 80
    jerry says:

    I shall look for your answer

    I gave you an answer and you answered it with a disingenuous reply.

  81. 81
    JVL says:

    Jerry: I gave you an answer and you answered it with a disingenuous reply.

    Just wanting to be clear: we are talking about replies number 61 and 63 above?

    Well, I am sorry but I was genuinely interested. And I wondered why no one had given that approach a try.

  82. 82
    jerry says:

    And I wondered why no one had given that approach a try.

    Maybe because they are afraid of the answer.

    The evolutionary biologist establishment certainly has the money and the minions who could do the work. ID depends on them for the actual research and cannot afford to actually do the work.

    People here don’t understand what evolutionary biologist believe. I was just reading a long OP with Allen MacNeill 13 years ago where he discusses what is happening in this community. Commenters here today don’t seem to understand just what their opponents believe. Villainizing them seems to be the norm.

  83. 83
    Querius says:

    Jerry @82,
    Indeed. It’s much easier to villainize than to try to understand. But I’d say that the uninterrupted string of surprising finds by Darwinists actually does the work of ID. For example, as new discoveries emerge regarding the functions of “junk” DNA, it becomes increasingly obvious that the initial presumption of “junk” was premature.

    -Q

  84. 84
    JVL says:

    Jerry: Maybe because they are afraid of the answer.

    Maybe. I was thinking why the ID folks hadn’t pursued it. Seems like something Dr Gauger could have done.

    I was especially interested if anyone had offered and opinion as to whether or not such an attempt would be conclusive. I think I understand the idea . . . but I don’t think I’m capable of deciding if it’s decisive.

    Commenters here today don’t seem to understand just what their opponents believe. Villainizing them seems to be the norm.

    Well, I am trying to not do that. I admit to failing in that effort sometimes.

  85. 85
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    There are ways of mathematically analysing a class or series of events to determine if they are truly random.

    🙂 Nope there is no way to determine that an event is random in the realm of functional information of life therefore “random mutation” from darwinism is nonsense .Your example with coin is a joke compared with cell’s functional information. To say a mutation is random is as absurd as to say that only protein coding genes are functional. It’s like believing that if you fill a deposit with construction materials is like you already have the house built. 😆
    . Darwinism missed the point for 100 years but is alive today only by brainwashing kids that become adults ,and transmit that mental virus to others.

  86. 86
    JVL says:

    LCD: Nope there is no way to determine that an event is random in the realm of functional information of life therefore “random mutation” from darwinism is nonsense

    What is your mathematical reason for that statement?

    It’s like believing that if you fill a deposit with construction materials is like you already have the house built.

    It’s not even close to that claim.

    If you want to make sure that a coin is ‘fair’ then you would probably choose to flip it 1000 or maybe 10,000 times. Let’s say you chose the latter: if you got 6,000 heads and 4,000 tails would you say the coin was ‘fair’ or that the outcome was random? What if you got 5,500 heads and 4,500 tails? What if you got 5,250 heads and 4,750 tails? How about 5,100 heads and 4,900 tails? Or 5,078 heads and 4, 922 tails?

    What you do, in such cases, is to compare your measured outcome against a theoretical purely random distribution. You know that, in the real world, not every ‘test’ or sample will turn out 50-50 because randomness doesn’t mean you get a head for every tail. It’s random. All real world tests of a truly random coin will fall into a distribution. If your outcome is within your chosen level of tolerance then you would conclude that the coin is, in fact, fair even if you didn’t get a 50-50 split.

    You can do something similar with mutations albeit that is much more complicated. But the mathematics is known. Also, remember, that the claim is: mutations are random with respect to fitness. That means that some regions will have more or less mutations so the mutation rate is not even across the whole genome.

    To say that this is all just rubbish is showing that you don’t understand the mathematics involved.

  87. 87
    EDTA says:

    JVL,

    You’re posting repeated questions that we have already addressed on older threads. You never incorporate what we say, and then try to one-up us with new arguments. Just the same old drums being beat. This is a repeated and well-established pattern.

    So I’m officially joining all the rest of you (Jerry, e.g.): I cannot tell you apart from a chatbot.

    But at least I got a lot of practice at replying to frustrating messages in a controlled manner. That was good for me, and I thank you for it.

  88. 88
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    If you want to make sure that a coin is ‘fair’ then you would probably choose to flip it 1000 or maybe 10,000 times. Let’s say you chose the latter: if you got 6,000 heads and 4,000 tails would you say the coin was ‘fair’ or that the outcome was random? What if you got 5,500 heads and 4,500 tails? What if you got 5,250 heads and 4,750 tails? How about 5,100 heads and 4,900 tails? Or 5,078 heads and 4, 922 tails?

    :)) Nonsense. This example doesn’t help you .There is nothing random in your example with coins. It’s about slightly different angles/forces applied on coins. If you have an enough sensible measure system you can say with 100% certainty what will be :head or tail.

    About “mutations are random with respect to fitness” it’s obvious that you confound random with stochastic :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aY0d5HTLIBk&t=2120s

  89. 89
    jerry says:

    the initial presumption of “junk” was premature.

    Here at UD over 13 years ago it was recognized by evolutionary biologists that junk DNA had function, namely for the development of new proteins as variations accumulated over eons of time in these non coding sequences.

    So some non-coding DNA had function because it was the basis for punctuated equilibrium. These non-coding regions were eventually exapted into new alleles. This meant the changes in life had two origins, the Darwinian change in current alleles and the punctuated equilibrium creation of new alleles. Both processes took extremely long times.

    I don’t see any understanding here by commenters of what evolutionary biologists actually propose. Which is why the research I pointed to would expose their ideas as fallacious. Right now they can just hide behind deep time and genome variation and say it is enough. And the average person buys it since NS is so reasonable and the rest of it seems to make sense.

    Aside: We now know that some non-coding DNA have other functions but certainly not all of it.

    Aside2: Dawkins I believe somewhere argued the original genome just changed here and there in different ways and that all the Evolutionary change was due to allele changes over vast amounts of time. Something that is obviously false. But I don’t have the source for this.

  90. 90
    jerry says:

    I’d say that the uninterrupted string of surprising finds by Darwinists actually does the work of ID

    Certainly helpful.

    But there are research projects that would seal the doom of naturalized Evolution for good and they won’t do those. ID has very limited resources to fund research into genera and family similarities and differences which is what is necessary.

    Maybe it’s happening but I’m not aware of it.

  91. 91
    Querius says:

    Jerry @89,

    Here at UD over 13 years ago it was recognized by evolutionary biologists that junk DNA had function, namely for the development of new proteins as variations accumulated over eons of time in these non coding sequences.

    As you probably know, the term “junk DNA” was first used by Dr. Susumu Ohno. His 1972 paper is brilliant and direct, but that’s where the presupposition for “junk” in DNA came from. Dr. Ohno speculated that junk DNA might contain a record of the evolution of an organism, which is why he raised the rhetorical question or why so much junk.

    So, here’s my question.

    Let’s say that at a party, you’re blindfolded and asked to guess whether a peanut or an M&M was just picked out at random from a large bowl by someone, also blindfolded. You’re to try to guess correctly whether it’s a peanut or an M&M. For the first one, you guess “peanut” but it’s an M&M. The same happens for the next one and the next.

    How many wrong answers would it take before you started guessing M&M?

    Right now they [evolutionary biologists] can just hide behind deep time and genome variation and say it is enough.

    Yes, indeed.

    Aside: We now know that some non-coding DNA have other functions but certainly not all of it.

    How did you come to the certainty of that conclusion?

    -Q

  92. 92
    Querius says:

    Jerry @90,

    But there are research projects that would seal the doom of naturalized Evolution for good and they won’t do those.

    Do you have any specifically in mind?

    -Q

  93. 93
    JVL says:

    LCD: Nonsense. This example doesn’t help you .There is nothing random in your example with coins. It’s about slightly different angles/forces applied on coins. If you have an enough sensible measure system you can say with 100% certainty what will be :head or tail.

    Uh huh. Shall we use Brownian motion instead? If you observe a molecule moving apparently randomly in a solution what test would you use to determine if it really was random?

    About “mutations are random with respect to fitness” it’s obvious that you confound random with stochastic :

    Really? Let’s have a look shall we. From Wikipedia:

    Stochastic (from Greek ?????? (stókhos) ‘aim, guess’) refers to the property of being well described by a random probability distribution. Although stochasticity and randomness are distinct in that the former refers to a modeling approach and the latter refers to phenomena themselves, these two terms are often used synonymously. Furthermore, in probability theory, the formal concept of a stochastic process is also referred to as a random process.

    Stochasticity is used in many different fields, including the natural sciences such as biology, chemistry, ecology, neuroscience, and physics, as well as technology and engineering fields such as image processing, signal processing, information theory, computer science, cryptography, and telecommunications. It is also used in finance, due to seemingly random changes in financial markets as well as in medicine, linguistics, music, media, colour theory, botany, manufacturing, and geomorphology. Stochastic modeling is also used in social science.

    One of the simplest continuous-time stochastic processes is Brownian motion. This was first observed by botanist Robert Brown while looking through a microscope at pollen grains in water.

    The Monte Carlo method is a stochastic method popularized by physics researchers Stanis?aw Ulam, Enrico Fermi, John von Neumann, and Nicholas Metropolis.[33] The use of randomness and the repetitive nature of the process are analogous to the activities conducted at a casino. Methods of simulation and statistical sampling generally did the opposite: using simulation to test a previously understood deterministic problem. Though examples of an “inverted” approach do exist historically, they were not considered a general method until the popularity of the Monte Carlo method spread.

    Perhaps the most famous early use was by Enrico Fermi in 1930, when he used a random method to calculate the properties of the newly discovered neutron. Monte Carlo methods were central to the simulations required for the Manhattan Project, though they were severely limited by the computational tools of the time. Therefore, it was only after electronic computers were first built (from 1945 on) that Monte Carlo methods began to be studied in depth. In the 1950s they were used at Los Alamos for early work relating to the development of the hydrogen bomb, and became popularized in the fields of physics, physical chemistry, and operations research. The RAND Corporation and the U.S. Air Force were two of the major organizations responsible for funding and disseminating information on Monte Carlo methods during this time, and they began to find a wide application in many different fields.

    Uses of Monte Carlo methods require large amounts of random numbers, and it was their use that spurred the development of pseudorandom number generators, which were far quicker to use than the tables of random numbers which had been previously used for statistical sampling.

    Stochastic resonance: In biological systems, introducing stochastic “noise” has been found to help improve the signal strength of the internal feedback loops for balance and other vestibular communication. It has been found to help diabetic and stroke patients with balance control. Many biochemical events also lend themselves to stochastic analysis. Gene expression, for example, has a stochastic component through the molecular collisions—as during binding and unbinding of RNA polymerase to a gene promoter—via the solution’s Brownian motion.

  94. 94
    JVL says:

    EDTA: You never incorporate what we say, and then try to one-up us with new arguments. Just the same old drums being beat. This is a repeated and well-established pattern.

    I just don’t think anyone has actually presented a testable ID prediction regarding any kind of biological development. Like, for example: when a new species will arise, when certain beneficial mutations will occur, when will some genomes balloon up so as to be magnitudes larger than similar lifeforms, etc. But I’m happy to stop asking since no one can come up with such things. Pity.

    But at least I got a lot of practice at replying to frustrating messages in a controlled manner. That was good for me, and I thank you for it.

    There’s a little bit of goodness in everything!

  95. 95
    jerry says:

    But I’m happy to stop asking since no one can come up with such things

    But, yet it was pointed out to you twice yesterday and you refused to address it.

    You acknowledged it was pointed out to you. As I said nearly all your comments are disingenuous.

  96. 96
    ET says:

    JVL:

    I just don’t think anyone has actually presented a testable ID prediction regarding any kind of biological development.

    That doesn’t have anything to do with ID. You are clueless.

    You have to be the biggest loser, ever. You don’t have a clue, at all. You don’t understand science and biology is way above your head.

  97. 97
    jerry says:

    How did you come to the certainty of that conclusion?

    The nature and type of genome variation.

    Do you have any specifically in mind?

    Yes, pointed out to JVL more than once and you commented on one of the comments about it.

    See #61

  98. 98
    ET says:

    Only the willfully ignorant say that mutations are random with respect to fitness. Evolutionary biologists say that mutations are random as in accidents, errors or mistakes. Period. Mutations are not planned. They are happenstance occurrences. Period.

  99. 99
    JVL says:

    Jerry: But, yet it was pointed out to you twice yesterday and you refused to address it.

    It’s my view that what you provided was not addressing the same thing as my original questions. But I am interested in what you posted and why, say, The Discovery Institute (which has a research branch) hasn’t followed up on it. I can’t imagine it would cost that much.

  100. 100
    JVL says:

    ET: That doesn’t have anything to do with ID. You are clueless.

    Look, you think design influenced biological development and, I’m pretty sure, you think that design still does influence biological development. So, given that, I was just wondering if anyone could make a biological development prediction.

  101. 101
    ET says:

    JVL, you do not get to tell me what I think. I say that only intelligent design can explain biological development- ie meiosis and all of what is required for the processes involved in developmental biology.

    And no one can predict what any given designer will design next. That isn’t how it works. ID predicts what we will observe when trying to determine the root cause of the effect we are investigating.

  102. 102
    Alan Fox says:

    JVL

    Although stochasticity and randomness are distinct in that the former refers to a modeling approach and the latter refers to phenomena themselves, these two terms are often used synonymously.

    Handy to know. I used to think ‘stochastic’ was just a snobby way to say ‘random’.

  103. 103
    JVL says:

    ET: And no one can predict what any given designer will design next. That isn’t how it works.

    Okay. So, you think it’s not possible to say when new species will form, when new ‘body plans’ will be seen, etc?

    I realise you’re not necessarily including minor adaptations or changes arising from ‘degradations’ in a genome. So if we took a species of . . . turtle say and put populations of those on different tropical islands you would expect some minor changes but not a species split?

    How does that reconcile with your view that organisms are designed to evolve? Meaning: is there already a . . . plan or a scheme permeating cells which dictates where they are heading? If we could learn to read that scheme could we then predict when speciation would occur? OR is the scheme being modified and changed on occasion?

  104. 104
    Alan Fox says:

    For example, as new discoveries emerge regarding the functions of “junk” DNA, it becomes increasingly obvious that the initial presumption of “junk” was premature.

    Indeed, ID proponents have had a lot of fun equivocating over what constitutes ‘junk’ DNA. The fact is that there is junk DNA, known to be parasitic, ERVs etc, DNA previously thought non-functional and later found to have function, the possibility of random mutations fortuitously happening in a section of junk that can produce new function and still, I’m sure, DNA sequences where it is undecided. The consensus definition of junk DNA among biologists is DNA that has no function useful to its host organism. The thing that changes is not the definition but whether a section of DNA qualifies.

  105. 105
    jerry says:

    This much ado about nothing.

    ID for years has not said much about non-coding DNA or that part of it sometimes called junk DNA. Yes, certain individual will expound on it but the reality is that some DNA has no function, some DNA was thought to have no function but ended up with function.

    So what else is new but to argue over nonsense which any discussion of the term “junk DNA” generally is.

  106. 106
    Alan Fox says:

    Thanks, Jerry, for reiterating my point.

  107. 107
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Uh huh. Shall we use Brownian motion instead? If you observe a molecule moving apparently randomly in a solution what test would you use to determine if it really was random?

    😆 Out of the frying pan into the fire. Did you discard the coins so quickly? Now that you brought “brownian motion” into discussion please explain why in the world would you think that is a similarity between a molecule moving in a solution and mutations happening in a cell ? 🙂

    Your example with coin and then with brownian motion confirm what I said : you confound random with stochastic I repost the video of Perry Marshall explaining the difference.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aY0d5HTLIBk&t=2120s

    In a vial is nothing random because the movement is controlled exclusively by the chemistry laws If you zoom out enough at the level of molecules there is nothing random everything is very deterministic . In the cell there is nothing like “brownian movement” because cell itself is a stochastic control system that reacts intelligently to internal/external noise with the purpose to mantain the homeostasis constant even when the conditions change. There is no genetic code /no repair mechanisms/no homeostasis in a vial .

    In conclusion nothing random in the cell, where is a code there is nothing let to the mercy of chance.
    Chance is not a cause, do not create genes, cybernetic systems , feedback loops,etc… chance is a noise that cell fight against.

  108. 108
    Alan Fox says:

    Goodness me. Brownian motion is universal; more universal than gravity. Happens everywhere: in cells, in test tubes, outer space.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brownian_motion

  109. 109
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Alan Fox
    Goodness me. Brownian motion is universal; more universal than gravity

    Really? Please explain to us how brownian is the mechanism of repairing DNA , RNA. 😆 What about membrane selectivity a lot of brownian motion over there ? What is brownian about reproduction system . Magical thinking.

  110. 110
    JVL says:

    LCD: Out of the frying pan into the fire. Did you discard the coins so quickly? Now that you brought “brownian motion” into discussion please explain why in the world would you think that is a similarity between a molecule moving in a solution and mutations happening in a cell ?

    I was trying to find a random process that you would accept as being random since you decided you didn’t like the coin model.

    I repost the video of Perry Marshall explaining the difference.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aY0d5HTLIBk&t=2120s

    How do you know Perry Marshall got it right? I think I’ll stick with my own personal education and the opinion of people working in the field. You don’t really seem to understand the mathematics so I’m not sure I will take your recommendation seriously.

    In a vial is nothing random because the movement is controlled exclusively by the chemistry laws If you zoom out enough at the level of molecules there is nothing random everything is very deterministic . In the cell there is nothing like “brownian movement” because cell itself is a stochastic control system that reacts intelligently to internal/external noise with the purpose to mantain the homeostasis constant even when the conditions change. There is no genetic code /no repair mechanisms/no homeostasis in a vial .

    Right. Wondering if it’s time to back away slowly and avoid eye contact.

    In conclusion nothing random in the cell, where is a code there is nothing let to the mercy of chance.
    Chance is not a cause, do not create genes, cybernetic systems , feedback loops,etc… chance is a noise that cell fight against.

    Well, you’ve entirely missed the point of my examples and you’ve introduced weird side issues which have nothing to do with the topic at hand.

    Please explain to us how brownian is the mechanism of repairing DNA , RNA. ? What about membrane selectivity a lot of brownian motion over there ? What is brownian about reproduction system . Magical thinking.

    No one said brownian motion had anything to do with any of those things.

    You’re really embarrassing yourself now. Just saying.

  111. 111
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    Well, you’ve entirely missed the point

    The idea is there is no link between your coin/brownian movement “randomness” and a mutation “randomness”. Barbara McClintok used few hundreds corn plants(DNA:2 billion) and majority reacted in the same way by repairing damaged DNA. For your randomness joke to be true Barbara should have been grown 10^1000000000 maize plants to obtain the result she obtained with few hundreds. Think ,doesn’t hurt. 😆

  112. 112
    JVL says:

    LCD: The idea is there is no link between your coin/brownian movement “randomness” and a mutation “randomness”.

    I was trying to explain how you determine if something is random. I was not trying to draw a comparison between those two different phenomena.

    Barbara McClintok used few hundreds corn plants(DNA:2 billion) and majority reacted in the same way by repairing damaged DNA. For your randomness joke to be true Barbara should have been grown 10^1000000000 maize plants to obtain the result she obtained with few hundreds. Think ,doesn’t hurt. ?

    Something you borrowed, rather badly in fact, from that video you linked to.

    Look, it’s clear you yourself don’t understand the mathematics behind many of these things. We could keep trying to explain them to you and you keep denying well established mathematics and biology . . . or, we just let it go ’cause it’s clear you’re not quite connecting for whatever reason.

    If you don’t even understand the basics then I can’t explain to you why you’re wrong.

  113. 113
    Lieutenant Commander Data says:

    If you don’t even understand the basics then I can’t explain to you why you’re wrong.

    Haha, mathematics didn’t help you too much to understand what code /symbol / sign/ genetic language means . Very strange . That’s why you ask for evidence for ID when cell is full of different interconnected codes that are not produced by universal laws. So if you “don’t understand”(play stupid) what a code is please don’t talk about maths you make mathematicians to look bad.
    You lost all your credibility in sign-symbol-code debates.

  114. 114
    Alan Fox says:

    Blimey. Beyond parody.

  115. 115
    ET says:

    Alan Fox, the equivocating hypocrite. Beyond parody, indeed.

  116. 116
    JVL says:

    LCD: Haha, mathematics didn’t help you too much to understand what code /symbol / sign/ genetic language means . Very strange .

    Um, we weren’t talking about codes though were we?

    That’s why you ask for evidence for ID when cell is full of different interconnected codes that are not produced by universal laws.

    But I wasn’t asking for that at this particular moment was I?

    So if you “don’t understand”(play stupid) what a code is please don’t talk about maths you make mathematicians to look bad.
    You lost all your credibility in sign-symbol-code debates.

    I can’t even have a coherent conversation with you, you’re replies are disjointed within themselves and between themselves.

    If you want to have a discussion about a particular subject and how it relates to the development of life on earth then I’m happy to do that. If you’re just going to keep changing the subject and bouncing all over the place then reasoned discussion is impossible.

    So, pick a topic and stick with it or stop. It’s up to you.

  117. 117
    ET says:

    JVL:

    How does that reconcile with your view that organisms are designed to evolve?

    Extant organisms aren’t those organisms, though. And evolution is just a change in allele frequency over time. Nylonase is a good example of it, though.

  118. 118
    Querius says:

    Jerry @97,

    Again, how does “the nature and type of genome variation” (as you stated it) provide you with certainty that “some non-coding DNA have other functions but certainly not all of it”?

    Also, I looked at #61 as you suggested and I didn’t see any reference to an experiment that “are research projects that would seal the doom of naturalized Evolution for good and they won’t do those.” Could you please humor me and be specific?

    Querius: Let’s say that at a party, you’re blindfolded and asked to guess whether a peanut or an M&M was just picked out at random from a large bowl by someone, also blindfolded. You’re to try to guess correctly whether it’s a peanut or an M&M. For the first one, you guess “peanut” but it’s an M&M. The same happens for the next one and the next.
    How many wrong answers would it take before you started guessing M&M?

    Would you humor me with your answer, so I can make my point regarding ID?

    Thanks.

    -Q

  119. 119
    jerry says:

    I looked at #61 as you suggested and I didn’t see any reference to an experiment that “are research projects that would seal the doom of naturalized Evolution for good and they won’t do those.

    I assumed that everyone here understood how naturalized evolution is supposed to work. But that is apparently not true.

    Everything comes down to protein formation, or the gene sequences that lead to new proteins. Gould realized this which is why he proposed punctuated equilibrium. After reading some recent articles on punctuated equilibrium, it became obvious no one here understands it.

    Neither did I till Allen MacNeill pointed to Jurgen Brosius as the key to understanding naturalized evolution. He was given the honor of eulogizing Gould in a journal article/book published in 2007 in Paleobiology.

    Essentially punctuated equilibrium solves the protein issue by claiming that non-coding DNA mutates away over the millennia until a protein sequence emerges and is exapted to produce a new characteristic which suddenly appears.

    I assume you read my question to Ann Gauger and her response. She said two things, it would be very time consuming to verify that this process didn’t happen and that some of it was already being done with plants.

    I don’t know where you got the idea of an experiment for something that happened millions of years ago. It would require examination of the genomes of related species to see how they differ genetically. But most should contain similar but non coding sequences to verify how the proteins that exist in one species never actually formed in these related species.

    The absence of these sequences would destroy both punctuated equilibrium and Darwinian processes. If they exist, then ID would have to reconsider all it calculations that show such progressions couldn’t possibly happen.

    ID predicts these sequences don’t exist. Punctuated equilibrium/Darwinian processes predicts these sequences must exist.

    This is a simplified description of what could to be done to solve once and for all whether proteins can form naturally. The processes described by the evolutionary biologists must leave a trail to the actual protein formation.

    Aside: the concept of common descent could be verified in a similar way. Genomes contain all sorts of sequences that are non coding from millions of years ago. These sequences/close approximations should be in all the species in the same branch.

    If they are not then that would indicate lack of common descent. I’ve seen zero of this type of analysis anywhere but someone who was an evolutionary biologist referred to it 15 years ago on this site.

  120. 120
    Querius says:

    Jerry @119,

    Thanks for spelling it out.

    Susumu Ohno himself suggested this line of investigation, but with a historical spin in which “junk” DNA contained the vestiges of evolutionary processes. Perry Marshall in his book, Evolution 2.0, asserted that whole genome duplication/hybridization (sks Ohno’s 2R hypothesis) as well as the other evolutionary mechanisms to a lesser extent serve as an evolutionary scratchpad associated with punctuated equilibrium, which is far more efficient than random mutation through copying errors.

    How about my last question regarding peanuts and M&Ms?

    -Q

  121. 121
    jerry says:

    While researching this site for comments about just what naturalized Evolution is, I came across what may be the origin of the name for this site.

    How did Uncommondescent get its name. Did Dembski watch “Miracle?”

    See

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XD6Vnynjcrc

    The whole video is instructive if one knows the story but one can shorten it by watching this short video starting at 1:50. Highly recommend the movie, “Miracle” from which this video comes.

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