Genetics Human evolution Intelligent Design

Fifty different genes for eye color?

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You’ve heard this one before. From the study group: Eye color is “much more complex than previously thought.” If we’d thought of trademarking that phrase, we wouldn’t be asking for money from our readers at Christmas. On the other hand, it’s just as well used for free; it’s needed so often now.

Researchers have identified 50 new genes for eye color in a study involving the genetic analysis of almost 195,000 people across Europe and Asia.

An international team of researchers led by King’s College London and Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam have identified 50 new genes for eye colour in the largest genetic study of its kind to date. The study, published today in Science Advances, involved the genetic analysis of almost 195,000 people across Europe and Asia…

In addition, the team found that eye colour in Asians with different shades of brown is genetically similar to eye colour in Europeans ranging from dark brown to light blue…

This study builds on previous research in which scientists had identified a dozen genes linked to eye colour, believing there to be many more. Previously, scientists thought that variation in eye colour was controlled by one or two genes only, with brown eyes dominant over blue eyes.

Co-senior author Dr Pirro Hysi, King’s College London, said: “The findings are exciting because they bring us to a step closer to understanding the genes that cause one of the most striking features of the human faces, which has mystified generations throughout our history.

King’s College London, “Eye color genetics not so simple, study finds” at ScienceDaily (March 11, 2021)

Some of us recall learning in school that eye color was strictly a one-off. Brown eyes were represented by a capital B and blue eyes by a small b. Only one square in the diagram had two bb’s. That, we were told, was why blue eyes were rare…

Not that they were at all rare in our community. But hey, it was science! Who were we to argue?

Well, fast forward: Trust the science? It’s a good thing no one needed to take that one very seriously. It’s another thing when they’re dogmatically wrong about the stuff that really matters.

By the way, all this stuff supposedly came about purely by natural selection acting on random mutations (Darwinism)? Naw.

The paper is open access.

Hat tip: Philip Cunningham

84 Replies to “Fifty different genes for eye color?

  1. 1
    Seversky says:

    The lesson is that we are still learning. We are not imprisoned by the ineluctable truths of religious dogma. Research by human scientists uncovered the role of insulin in glucose metabolism and enabled us to treat if not yet cure diabetes. In physics, hitherto entirely unknown particles like the neutrino have been detected and the strange phenomena of the quantum world exposed. The Bible told us nothing about these things, We had to discover them for ourselves. God could have told his children what caused the Black Death that was killing them in their thousands but didn’t. It took his children another 300 years to find out for themselves. So either He didn’t care or He wasn’t there.

  2. 2
    count of crisco says:

    Some of us recall learning in school that eye color was strictly a one-off. Brown eyes were represented by a capital B and blue eyes by a small b. Only one square in the diagram had two bb’s. That, we were told, was why blue eyes were rare…

    If I remember correctly, the punnet square was used to teach us about dominant and recessive genes and the odds of what would be expressed. It had nothing to do with the number of alleles possible for a gene.

  3. 3
    count of crisco says:

    Deleted by commenter

  4. 4

    .
    Seversky, you believe that documented science (and history) is something to be strategically ignored if it conflicts with your personal ideology. You protect your beliefs by demanding nothing less than a logical impossibility as the only counter-evidence to those beliefs (rendering your claims unfalsifiable) and you do this for the explicit purpose of dismissing well-supported conclusions that you are emotionally incapable of acknowledging — even though they are based on recorded science and history that you cannot refute, and logic that you espouse yourself. Your are basically anathema to science, Seversky. It is no wonder that all your remaining comments are soaked in transparent assumptions and the most gratuitous non-sequiturs.

    Seversky: You are the one asserting an insupportable claim of impossibility. If you want to support the claim that it is impossible for a self-replicating system such as specified by von Neumann to have come about through natural causes then you must be able to eliminate all possible natural causes.

    UB: Where did I make that claim, Sev? I wrote the text above, and don’t recall making any such claim

    Seversky: So you are allowing that it is at least possible for such a system to emerge through natural causes?

    UB: You asked me if I claimed a naturalistic origin of life was impossible. I told you I don’t make that claim, nor do I require it. Logic doesn’t require it. Science doesn’t require it. Things typically proceed in science by way of specific propositions and supportive details, not featureless questions. However, if you are simply asking me in the abstract, then I’d say a person really can’t analyze a proposition if they don’t leave the door open to it being possible in light of given details. So if your question is merely in the abstract, then I can say “yes” in the same way that you say “yes” design is possible — but I really don’t think that is what you are after.

    Let’s hang a little meat on the bones of your question, and ask it in a way that adds some value to the answer.

    Since we agree on von Neumann’s predictions and their confirmation, we can let that agreement add some needed form to your question:

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Question: Do I think it is possible for pre-biotic chemical event X to become an autonomous open-ended self-replicator (i..e. marking the OoL on earth), if

    1: … if chemical event X does not control dynamic construction by means of a non-dynamic “quiescent description” (von Neumann, 1966)?
    Answer: No, I do not believe that is possible.

    2: … if chemical event X does not contain a set of interpretive constraints to establish a symbolic medium, making that description possible?
    Answer: No, I do not believe that is possible.

    3: … if chemical event X does not have the descriptive power to specify each of the building blocks required in its construction?
    Answer: No, I do not believe that is possible.

    4: … if chemical event X does not control the production of individual molecular objects (i.e. start, produce, stop)?
    Answer:: No, I do not think that is possible.

    5: … if chemical event X does not describe (the molecular objects within) a dissipative process that maintains itself and reproduces itself?
    Answer:: No, I do not think that is possible.

    6: … chemical event X does not describe its set of interpretive constraints
    Answer:: No, I do not think that is possible.

    7: … chemical event X does not transcribe its memory and provide it to its offspring (along with a set of constraints)?
    Answer:: No, I do not think that is possible.

    8: … chemical event X does not achieve semantic closure, that is, a simultaneous coordination between two critical sets of descriptions: a) those that describe the dissipative processes (maintenance and reproduction) and b) those that describe the set of constraints?
    Answer:: No, I do not think that is possible.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    So, there are eight instances off the top of my head where I do not think a naturalistic unguided origin of life is possible. I believe the OoL requires an organization to establish a high-capacity medium. It must be able to freely describe itself in that medium, as well as produce the products of that description. The products of that description must use dynamics (natural law) to cause it to maintain itself within a dissipative process (i.e. life’s “far from equilibrium state”), as well as control its reproduction. And to accomplish these things (i.e to start the system) will require semantic closure. Without semantic closure, it cannot function.

    So what about you? Do you think a thing would have to specify itself in order to reproduce? Do you think its offspring would have to be able to read and interpret that specification? Would the products of that specification have to actually function in specific ways? Do you think that a prebiotic organization could hail the origin of life on earth if it could not do these things? So when you pretend we know nothing substantive or conclusive about the OoL, its not really true is it? We know that encoded symbolic representation is the mechanism that allows something to specify itself, which in turn, enables the origin of life. We know this because, among other things, it was predicted by logic, confirmed by experiment, and under methodical scientific analysis, it fully comports to our universal experience of material reality. The entire system has been coherently described in the literature as a genuine sign process with very specific physical requirements, including specific objects with specific roles to play in the process — a system found nowhere else in the physical sciences, except in the use of language and mathematics, which is a universal correlate of intelligence.

    And if it is true that an encoded symbol system was predicted as fundamental to the OoL, and if it is true that an encoded symbol system was found at the very heart of the living cell, and if it is true that the use of language is a universal correlate of intelligence (a logical deduction made by scientific associations, universities and governments around the world) then the presence of empirical evidence supporting design in biology is already a documented fact. But the evidence and ramifications certainly don’t stop there. This can be grasped by simply asking the obvious questions that naturally fall from the evidence. Frankly, I’ve been asking them for years now. Those questions remain orphans, even among the well educated.

    Here is the deal, Sev. Whatever I think is possible or not possible is subject to evidence, just as it should be. You can tell me that you can flap your arms and fly, and I will immediately think that it is not possible. You are hopelessly heavy, your muscles are all wrong, your arms don’t have enough surface area, etc. etc. But if you just demand it, and spend years upon years demanding it, and indeed, I am expected to believe that you can flap your arms and fly or else I will suffer consequences — then I am not going to say “it’s not possible”. I’m going to say “show me”. That is how proper science works. It supports its legitimacy not by claim, but by evidence.

    That is the situation we are in here. Our positions on OoL, yours and mine, design versus materialism, are not equal. They are really not even close. I needn’t make any bold assumptions in recalling the fact that an encoded symbol system was predicted to be the critical condition of self-replication. That is part of the historical record. I needn’t make assumptions in pointing out that Crick predicted that a set of “adapter” molecules would be found operating in the gene system. That is another historical fact. I needn’t make assumptions regarding Hoagland and Zamecnik confirming the adapters, along with the complex proteins that charge them; that is a documented result of experiment. I make no wild assumptions in recognizing that genetic code assignments could not be calculated from the dynamic properties of the constituents, but had to be demonstrated in order to be known. The list goes on and on.

    In stark contrast to my position, Sev, you can do nothing but lead with assumptions. When you run for the tall grass (as you always do) and say we just don’t yet know how the system came about by unguided natural processes, you are merely assuming your conclusion. You dig a trench between you and the established facts of the matter, and you jump in. Other than regurgitating your personal contempt for religion, you’ve done little else on this forum for more than a decade now. You did it in the comments leading up to this posting, and you’ll do it again in your response afterwards.

    Seversky:. *crickets*

  5. 5
    bornagain77 says:

    As to: “Researchers have identified 50 new genes for eye color,,, The genetics of human eye colour is much more complex than previously thought,”

    Eye color genetics not so simple, study finds – March 11, 2021
    Summary: Researchers have identified 50 new genes for eye color in a study involving the genetic analysis of almost 195,000 people across Europe and Asia.
    Excerpt: The genetics of human eye colour is much more complex than previously thought, according to a new study published today.
    An international team of researchers led by King’s College London and Erasmus University Medical Center Rotterdam have identified 50 new genes for eye colour in the largest genetic study of its kind to date. The study, published today in Science Advances, involved the genetic analysis of almost 195,000 people across Europe and Asia.,,,
    In addition, the team found that eye colour in Asians with different shades of brown is genetically similar to eye colour in Europeans ranging from dark brown to light blue.
    This study builds on previous research in which scientists had identified a dozen genes linked to eye colour, believing there to be many more. Previously, scientists thought that variation in eye colour was controlled by one or two genes only, with brown eyes dominant over blue eyes.
    Co-senior author Dr Pirro Hysi, King’s College London, said: “The findings are exciting because they bring us to a step closer to understanding the genes that cause one of the most striking features of the human faces, which has mystified generations throughout our history.
    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2021/03/210311123443.htm

    This, (like so many other things that Darwinists ignore since it contradicts their theory), presents an insurmountable difficulty for Darwinists.

    First off, within the mathematics of population genetics, we find that, “If more than about three genes (nature unspecified) underpin a phenotype, the mathematics of population genetics, while qualitatively analyzable, requires too many unknown parameters to make quantitatively testable predictions,,, Theoretical genetics simply cannot handle this level of complexity, let alone analyse the effects of mutation.”

    The next evolutionary synthesis: from Lamarck and Darwin to genomic variation and systems biology – Bard – 2011
    Excerpt: If more than about three genes (nature unspecified) underpin a phenotype, the mathematics of population genetics, while qualitatively analyzable, requires too many unknown parameters to make quantitatively testable predictions [6]. The inadequacy of this approach is demonstrated by illustrations of the molecular pathways that generates traits [7]: the network underpinning something as simple as growth may have forty or fifty participating proteins whose production involves perhaps twice as many DNA sequences, if one includes enhancers, splice variants etc. Theoretical genetics simply cannot handle this level of complexity, let alone analyse the effects of mutation.
    http://www.biosignaling.com/co.....X-9-30.pdf

    Thus Darwinists, (since at least 50 genes underpin eye color), are at a complete loss, (with the genetic reductionism model), to explain how something as simple as eye color came about.

    Moreover, as the following article states, “most human (phenotypic) traits are influenced by so many genes that there is no likely systematic cause and effect”

    Gene previously linked to obesity is unrelated – June 29, 2015
    Excerpt: … in the real world of careful analysis, scientists are just not finding the “genes” that the headline writers need. British geneticist Steve Jones points out that most human traits are influenced by so many genes that there is no likely systematic cause and effect:
    “We know of more than 50 different genes associated with height … That has not percolated into the public mind, as the Google search for “scientists find the gene for” shows. The three letter word for — the gene FOR something — is the most dangerous word in genetics.”
    And the craze is not harmless, he warns. …
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....unrelated/

    To repeat, “human traits are influenced by so many genes that there is no likely systematic cause and effect”.

    And, needless to say, finding “no likely systematic cause and effect”, throws another big monkey wrench into the Darwinian claim that genotype generates phenotypic traits.

    Here is an excellent powerpoint presentation (and article) by Dr. Jonathan Wells showing that the central dogma of Darwinian evolution, which simply stated is “DNA makes RNA makes protein makes us”, is incorrect at every step.

    Design Beyond DNA: A Conversation with Dr. Jonathan Wells – video (14:36 minute mark) – January 2017
    https://youtu.be/ASAaANVBoiE?t=876

    Dr. Jonathan Wells: Biology’s Quiet Revolution – podcast – April 15, 2016
    On this episode of ID the Future, Dr. Jonathan Wells discusses a popular claim, which he describes as “DNA makes RNA makes protein makes us”—or, every organism contains a program for itself in its DNA. Though this view fits neatly with the perspective of Darwinian evolution, it has been shown to be incorrect at every step. Listen in as Dr. Wells explains.
    https://www.discovery.org/multimedia/audio/idtf/2016/04/dr-jonathan-wells-biologys-quiet-revolution/

    If fact, the irresolvable genotype-phenotype mapping problem, (as is usual for Darwinian presuppositions), is turning out to be far worse for Darwinists than just 50 genes underlying a phenotypic trait.

    As the following 2016 article states, “It’s now thought that such (phenotypic) traits are the work of thousands of genetic variants, working in concert.”

    What If (Almost) Every Gene Affects (Almost) Everything? – JUN 16, 2017
    Excerpt: If you told a modern geneticist that a complex trait—whether a physical characteristic like height or weight, or the risk of a disease like cancer or schizophrenia—was the work of just 15 genes, they’d probably laugh. It’s now thought that such traits are the work of thousands of genetic variants, working in concert. The vast majority of them have only tiny effects, but together, they can dramatically shape our bodies and our health. They’re weak individually, but powerful en masse.
    https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/06/its-like-all-connected-man/530532/

    And as the following 2018 article states, “in the cell types that are relevant to a disease, it appears that not 15, not 100, but essentially all genes contribute to the condition. The authors suggested that for some traits, “multiple” loci could mean more than 100,000.”

    Theory Suggests That All Genes Affect Every Complex Trait – June 20, 2018
    Excerpt: Mutations of a single gene are behind sickle cell anemia, for instance, and mutations in another are behind cystic fibrosis.
    But unfortunately for those who like things simple, these conditions are the exceptions. The roots of many traits, from how tall you are to your susceptibility to schizophrenia, are far more tangled. In fact, they may be so complex that almost the entire genome may be involved in some way,,,
    One very early genetic mapping study in 1999 suggested that “a large number of loci (perhaps > than 15)” might contribute to autism risk, recalled Jonathan Pritchard, now a geneticist at Stanford University. “That’s a lot!” he remembered thinking when the paper came out.
    Over the years, however, what scientists might consider “a lot” in this context has quietly inflated. Last June, Pritchard and his Stanford colleagues Evan Boyle and Yang Li (now at the University of Chicago) published a paper about this in Cell that immediately sparked controversy, although it also had many people nodding in cautious agreement. The authors described what they called the “omnigenic” model of complex traits. Drawing on GWAS analyses of three diseases, they concluded that in the cell types that are relevant to a disease, it appears that not 15, not 100, but essentially all genes contribute to the condition. The authors suggested that for some traits, “multiple” loci could mean more than 100,000.
    https://www.quantamagazine.org/omnigenic-model-suggests-that-all-genes-affect-every-complex-trait-20180620/

  6. 6
    bornagain77 says:

    This is simply devastating to Dawkins’s entire ‘selfish’ gene concept.

    As James Shapiro explains, “this notion of the genome as a collection of discrete gene units prevailed when the neo-Darwinian “Modern Synthesis” emerged in the pre-DNA 1940s. Some prominent theorists even proposed that evolution could be defined simply as a change over time in the frequencies of different gene forms in a population.,,, The basic issue is that molecular genetics has (now) made it impossible to provide a consistent, or even useful, definition of the term “gene.,, The modern concept of the genome has no basic units. It has literally become “systems all the way down.” ,,, diehard defenders of orthodoxy in evolutionary biology are grievously mistaken in their stubbornness. DNA and molecular genetics have brought us to a fundamentally new conceptual understanding of genomes, how they are organized and how they function.”

    Why the ‘Gene’ Concept Holds Back Evolutionary Thinking – James Shapiro – 11/30/2012
    Excerpt: The Century of the Gene. In a 1948 Scientific American article, soon-to-be Nobel Laureate George Beadle wrote: “genes are the basic units of all living things.”,,,
    This notion of the genome as a collection of discrete gene units prevailed when the neo-Darwinian “Modern Synthesis” emerged in the pre-DNA 1940s. Some prominent theorists even proposed that evolution could be defined simply as a change over time in the frequencies of different gene forms in a population.,,,
    The basic issue is that molecular genetics has made it impossible to provide a consistent, or even useful, definition of the term “gene.” In March 2009, I attended a workshop at the Santa Fe Institute entitled “Complexity of the Gene Concept.” Although we had a lot of smart people around the table, we failed as a group to agree on a clear meaning for the term.
    The modern concept of the genome has no basic units. It has literally become “systems all the way down.” There are piecemeal coding sequences, expression signals, splicing signals, regulatory signals, epigenetic formatting signals, and many other “DNA elements” (to use the neutral ENCODE terminology) that participate in the multiple functions involved in genome expression, replication, transmission, repair and evolution.,,,
    Conventional thinkers may claim that molecular data only add details to a well-established evolutionary paradigm. But the diehard defenders of orthodoxy in evolutionary biology are grievously mistaken in their stubbornness. DNA and molecular genetics have brought us to a fundamentally new conceptual understanding of genomes, how they are organized and how they function.
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....07245.html

    In fact, and as is somewhat obvious, having multiple interacting genes underly phenotypic traits constrain the ability of ‘genes’ to evolve.

    As Jeffrey Tomkins explains, “Before the advent of modern molecular biology, scientists defined a gene as a single unit of inheritance. If a gene was found to influence multiple externally visible traits, it was said to be pleiotropic.,,, as our understanding of genetics grew through DNA science, it became clear that genes operate in complex interconnected networks.”,,, “Many studies have provided evidence for the ability of pleiotropy to constrain gene evolution.”,,, “Our study provided supportive evidence that pleiotropy constraints the evolution of transcription factors (Tfs).”,,,

    Gene Pleiotropy Roadblocks Evolution by Jeffrey P. Tomkins, Ph.D. – Dec. 8, 2016
    Excerpt: Before the advent of modern molecular biology, scientists defined a gene as a single unit of inheritance. If a gene was found to influence multiple externally visible traits, it was said to be pleiotropic—a term first used in 1910.2 During this early period of genetic discovery, pleiotropy was considered to be quite rare because scientists assumed most genes only possessed a single function—a simplistic idea that remained popular throughout most of the 20th century. However, as our understanding of genetics grew through DNA science, it became clear that genes operate in complex interconnected networks. Furthermore, individual genes produce multiple variants of end products with different effects through a variety of intricate mechanisms.2,3 Taken together, these discoveries show that pleiotropy is a common feature of nearly every gene.,,,
    The pleiotropy evolution problem is widely known among secular geneticists, but rarely discussed in the popular media. In this new research report, the authors state, “Many studies have provided evidence for the ability of pleiotropy to constrain gene evolution.”,,,
    “Our study provided supportive evidence that pleiotropy constraints the evolution of transcription factors (Tfs).”,,,
    http://www.icr.org/article/9747

    In short, and directly contrary to what Darwinists had originally presupposed, neither DNA, nor the genes in DNA, can be considered “the blueprint of life”.

    As the following article bluntly states, “DNA cannot be seen as the ‘blueprint’ for life,”

    DNA may not be life’s instruction book—just a jumbled list of ingredients – Kimbra Cutlip, University of Maryland – APRIL 22, 2020
    Excerpt:,,, “DNA cannot be seen as the ‘blueprint’ for life,” Jose said. “It is at best an overlapping and potentially scrambled list of ingredients that is used differently by different cells at different times.”
    ,,, In addition, scientists are unable to determine the complex shape of an organ such as an eye, or that a creature will have eyes at all, by reading the creature’s DNA. These fundamental aspects of anatomy are dictated by something outside of the DNA.
    https://phys.org/news/2020-04-dna-life-bookjust-jumbled-ingredients.html

    And as far as experimental science can tell us, biological form simply is not reducible to mutations to DNA,

    As Jonathan Wells states in the following article, Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.

    Jonathan Wells: Far from being all-powerful, DNA does not wholly determine biological form – March 31, 2014
    Excerpt: Studies using saturation mutagenesis in the embryos of fruit flies, roundworms, zebrafish and mice also provide evidence against the idea that DNA specifies the basic form of an organism. Biologists can mutate (and indeed have mutated) a fruit fly embryo in every possible way, and they have invariably observed only three possible outcomes: a normal fruit fly, a defective fruit fly, or a dead fruit fly.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/jonathan-wells-far-from-being-all-powerful-dna-does-not-wholly-determine-biological-form/

    Response to John Wise – October 2010
    Excerpt: But there are solid empirical grounds for arguing that changes in DNA alone cannot produce new organs or body plans. A technique called “saturation mutagenesis”1,2 has been used to produce every possible developmental mutation in fruit flies (Drosophila melanogaster),3,4,5 roundworms (Caenorhabditis elegans),6,7 and zebrafish (Danio rerio),8,9,10 and the same technique is now being applied to mice (Mus musculus).11,12. None of the evidence from these and numerous other studies of developmental mutations supports the neo-Darwinian dogma that DNA mutations can lead to new organs or body plans–,,,
    (As Jonathan Wells states),,, We can modify the DNA of a fruit fly embryo in any way we want, and there are only three possible outcomes:
    A normal fruit fly;
    A defective fruit fly; or
    A dead fruit fly.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....38811.html

    In fact, directly contrary to Darwinian presuppositions, it is now known that “It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.”

    Ask an Embryologist: Genomic Mosaicism – Jonathan Wells – February 23, 2015
    Excerpt: humans have a “few thousand” different cell types. Here is my simple question: Does the DNA sequence in one cell type differ from the sequence in another cell type in the same person?,,,
    The simple answer is: We now know that there is considerable variation in DNA sequences among tissues, and even among cells in the same tissue. It’s called genomic mosaicism.
    In the early days of developmental genetics, some people thought that parts of the embryo became different from each other because they acquired different pieces of the DNA from the fertilized egg. That theory was abandoned,,,
    ,,,(then) “genomic equivalence” — the idea that all the cells of an organism (with a few exceptions, such as cells of the immune system) contain the same DNA — became the accepted view.
    I taught genomic equivalence for many years. A few years ago, however, everything changed. With the development of more sophisticated techniques and the sampling of more tissues and cells, it became clear that genetic mosaicism is common.
    I now know as an embryologist,,,Tissues and cells, as they differentiate, modify their DNA to suit their needs. It’s the organism controlling the DNA, not the DNA controlling the organism.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....93851.html

    Moreover, the failure of the reductive materialism of Darwinian evolution to be able to explain the basic form of any particular organism occurs at a very low level. Much lower than DNA itself.

    In the following article entitled ‘Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics’, which studied the derivation of macroscopic properties from a complete microscopic description, the researchers remark that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,, The researchers further commented that their findings challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”

    Quantum physics problem proved unsolvable: Gödel and Turing enter quantum physics – December 9, 2015
    Excerpt: A mathematical problem underlying fundamental questions in particle and quantum physics is provably unsolvable,,,
    It is the first major problem in physics for which such a fundamental limitation could be proven. The findings are important because they show that even a perfect and complete description of the microscopic properties of a material is not enough to predict its macroscopic behaviour.,,,
    “We knew about the possibility of problems that are undecidable in principle since the works of Turing and Gödel in the 1930s,” added Co-author Professor Michael Wolf from Technical University of Munich. “So far, however, this only concerned the very abstract corners of theoretical computer science and mathematical logic. No one had seriously contemplated this as a possibility right in the heart of theoretical physics before. But our results change this picture. From a more philosophical perspective, they also challenge the reductionists’ point of view, as the insurmountable difficulty lies precisely in the derivation of macroscopic properties from a microscopic description.”
    http://phys.org/news/2015-12-q.....godel.html

    In other words, the reductive materialistic framework that Darwinian evolution rests upon is a non-starter in regards to ever being able to explain the ‘macroscopic’ phenotypic features of any organism.

    Darwinists, (with their belief that mutations to DNA will ‘evolve’ fundamentally new body plans), are, (to borrow Shapiro’s characterization), “grievously mistaken” and are not even on the correct ‘theoretical’ playing field in order to properly understand how any organism might achieve its particular biological form. Or any of the traits of that form.

    Darwinism vs Biological Form – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JyNzNPgjM4w

    Verse:

    Psalm 139:13
    For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

  7. 7
    Bob O'H says:

    ba77 @ 6 –

    Thus Darwinists, (since at least 50 genes underpin eye color), are at a complete loss, (with the genetic reductionism model), to explain how something as simple as eye color came about.

    No we’re not, we have models initially developed a century ago, and since refined. Please do some basic research on quantitative genetics.

  8. 8
    bornagain77 says:

    Bob O’H in response to this,

    Thus Darwinists, (since at least 50 genes underpin eye color), are at a complete loss, (with the genetic reductionism model), to explain how something as simple as eye color came about.

    states,

    No we’re not, we have models initially developed a century ago, and since refined. Please do some basic research on quantitative genetics.

    Well Bob, besides the article I cited directly contradicting your claim,

    The next evolutionary synthesis: from Lamarck and Darwin to genomic variation and systems biology – Bard – 2011
    Excerpt: If more than about three genes (nature unspecified) underpin a phenotype, the mathematics of population genetics, while qualitatively analyzable, requires too many unknown parameters to make quantitatively testable predictions [6]. The inadequacy of this approach is demonstrated by illustrations of the molecular pathways that generates traits [7]: the network underpinning something as simple as growth may have forty or fifty participating proteins whose production involves perhaps twice as many DNA sequences, if one includes enhancers, splice variants etc. Theoretical genetics simply cannot handle this level of complexity, let alone analyse the effects of mutation.
    http://www.biosignaling.com/co.....X-9-30.pdf

    This Oxford scientist also directly contradicts your claim,

    With a Startling Candor, Oxford Scientist Admits a Gaping Hole in Evolutionary Theory – November 2011
    Excerpt: As of now, we have no good theory of how to read [genetic] networks, how to model them mathematically or how one network meshes with another; worse, we have no obvious experimental lines of investigation for studying these areas. There is a great deal for systems biology to do in order to produce a full explanation of how genotypes generate phenotypes,,,?http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....52821.html

    Moreover Bob, different scientists do get overly attached to their own models to the point of being unable to see any flaws their own models may have.

    And that is the beauty of empirical science. That is to say, can you empirically demonstrate that your particular Darwinian model is correct over and above those who say your Darwinian model is fatally flawed?

    And the point is that you can’t.

    In fact, when realistic, (empirically established), rates of detrimental mutations are included in Fisher’s formulation of population genetics then it falsifies Fisher’s formulation of population genetics.

    Geneticist Corrects Fisher’s Theorem, but the Correction Turns Natural Selection Upside Down – December 22, 2017 | David F. Coppedge
    A new paper corrects errors in Fisher’s Theorem, a mathematical “proof” of Darwinism. Rather than supporting evolution, the corrected theorem inverts it.
    Excerpt: The authors of the new paper describe the fundamental problems with Fisher’s theorem. They then use Fisher’s first principles, and reformulate and correct the theorem. They have named the corrected theorem The Fundamental Theorem of Natural Selection with Mutations. The correction of the theorem is not a trivial change – it literally flips the theorem on its head. The resulting conclusions are clearly in direct opposition to what Fisher had originally intended to prove.,,,
    The authors of the new paper realized that one of Fisher’s pivotal assumptions was clearly false, and in fact was falsified many decades ago. In his informal corollary, Fisher essentially assumed that new mutations arose with a nearly normal distribution – with an equal proportion of good and bad mutations (so mutations would have a net fitness effect of zero). We now know that the vast majority of mutations in the functional genome are harmful, and that beneficial mutations are vanishingly rare. The simple fact that Fisher’s premise was wrong, falsifies Fisher’s corollary. Without Fisher’s corollary – Fisher’s Theorem proves only that selection improves a population’s fitness until selection exhausts the initial genetic variation, at which point selective progress ceases. Apart from his corollary, Fisher’s Theorem only shows that within an initial population with variant genetic alleles, there is limited selective progress followed by terminal stasis.,,,
    The authors observe that the more realistic the parameters, the more likely fitness decline becomes.
    https://crev.info/2017/12/geneticist-corrects-fishers-theorem/

    Fisher’s proof of Darwinian evolution has been flipped?
    – December 27, 2017
    Excerpt: we re-examine Fisher’s Theorem, showing that because it disregards mutations, and because it is invalid beyond one instant in time, it has limited biological relevance. We build a differential equations model from Fisher’s first principles with mutations added, and prove a revised theorem showing the rate of change in mean fitness is equal to genetic variance plus a mutational effects term. We refer to our revised theorem as the fundamental theorem of natural selection with mutations. Our expanded theorem, and our associated analyses (analytic computation, numerical simulation, and visualization), provide a clearer understanding of the mutation–selection process, and allow application of biologically realistic parameters such as mutational effects. The expanded theorem has biological implications significantly different from what Fisher had envisioned.
    https://uncommondescent.com/intelligent-design/fishers-proof-of-darwinian-evolution-has-been-flipped/

    The fundamental theorem of natural selection with mutations – June 2018
    Excerpt: Because the premise underlying Fisher’s corollary is now recognized to be entirely wrong, Fisher’s corollary is falsified. Consequently, Fisher’s belief that he had developed a mathematical proof that fitness must always increase is also falsified.

    We build a differential equations model from Fisher’s first principles with mutations added, and prove a revised theorem showing the rate of change in mean fitness is equal to genetic variance plus a mutational effects term. We refer to our revised theorem as the fundamental theorem of natural selection with mutations. Our expanded theorem, and our associated analyses (analytic computation, numerical simulation, and visualization), provide a clearer understanding of the mutation–selection process, and allow application of biologically realistic parameters such as mutational effects. The expanded theorem has biological implications significantly different from what Fisher had envisioned.
    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s00285-017-1190-x

  9. 9
    jerry says:

    No we’re not, we have models initially developed a century ago, and since refined. Please do some basic research on quantitative genetics.

    Two things

    First, I maintain whatever Darwinists believe, it is

              nothing more than modern genetics.

    Thus, it’s very useful but extremely trivial in the understanding of evolution.

    Darwinism has been a bait and switch concept for a long time now. The irony is that it essentially has nothing to do with evolution.

    Second, Bob O’H identifies as a Darwinist.

  10. 10
    ET says:

    What is Bob O’H talking about? There aren’t any models of evolution by means of blind and mindless processes.

  11. 11
    ET says:

    seversky:

    We are not imprisoned by the ineluctable truths of religious dogma.

    You are imprisoned by the nonsensible dogma of materialism and evolutionism. Way to take a step backwards.

    Neither materialism nor evolutionism have helped advance our knowledge

  12. 12
    asauber says:

    “We are not imprisoned by the ineluctable truths of religious dogma.”

    But Sev IS imprisoned by Scientism. It has it’s own religious dogmas. And he clings to them like flies on manure.

    Andrew

  13. 13
    bornagain77 says:

    Of further note to Bob’s claim that Darwinists “have models initially developed a century ago” that can tell us exactly how eye color originated.

    From Oxford we also see this help wanted ad: “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. …”,,, “mathematical population geneticists mainly deny that natural selection leads to optimization of any useful kind.”,,,

    Oxford University Seeks Mathemagician – Douglas Axe – 2011
    Excerpt: In the Oxford job description [1], under the heading Extracts from the grant application to the St John’s Research Centre, subheading Objectives:
    “1. To construct a mathematical framework, with appropriate theorems, to represent fully the core argument in Darwin’s Origin of Species, namely that the purely mechanical processes of inheritance and reproduction can give rise through natural selection to the appearance of design.”
    Under the same heading, subheading Summary:
    “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. …”
    “The idea that organisms maximise their fitness as a result of natural selection is extremely important in many areas of biology. The explanatory apparatus of most whole organism, behavioural ecology, work would make no sense without it. However, the logical basis for the idea is in considerable doubt. The mainstream of mathematical population geneticists since about 1964 has emphatically rejected the claim that fitness is maximised. …
    There has been essentially no formal consideration of the kind of optimisation that emerges so naturally from verbal arguments such as those of Darwin (1859) and Dawkins (1976).”
    “The concept of fitness optimization is routinely used by field biologists, and first-year biology undergraduates are frequently taught that natural selection leads to organisms that maximize their fitness. Dawkins’ The Selfish Gene (1976) promoted a conceptual integration of modern evolutionary theory in which genes are viewed as optimising agents, which is extremely influential and widespread today and encompasses inclusive fitness theory and evolutionarily stable strategies as well as general optimality ideas. However, mathematical population geneticists mainly deny that natural selection leads to optimization of any useful kind. This fifty-year old schism is intellectually damaging in itself, and has prevented improvements in our concept of what fitness is. …”
    Generality is important, as a major aim [of the proposed work] is to find mathematical arguments that match Darwin’s verbal arguments in the Origin of Species, as well as Dawkins’s verbal arguments in the Selfish Gene and later works. …
    https://www.biologicinstitute.org/post/19310975799/oxford-university-seeks-mathemagician

    Given the background that Darwinists can’t explain “optimization of any useful kind” with their mathematical models, can Bob please entertain us with his exact mathematical model that explains exactly how an eye can be optimized, via unguided Darwinian processes, to the point of detecting a single photon?

    William Bialek: More Perfect Than We Imagined – March 23, 2013
    Excerpt: photoreceptor cells that carpet the retinal tissue of the eye and respond to light, are not just good or great or phabulous at their job. They are not merely exceptionally impressive by the standards of biology, with whatever slop and wiggle room the animate category implies. Photoreceptors operate at the outermost boundary allowed by the laws of physics, which means they are as good as they can be, period. Each one is designed to detect and respond to single photons of light — the smallest possible packages in which light comes wrapped.
    “Light is quantized, and you can’t count half a photon,” said William Bialek, a professor of physics and integrative genomics at Princeton University. “This is as far as it goes.” …
    Scientists have identified and mathematically anatomized an array of cases where optimization has left its fastidious mark, among them;,, the precision response in a fruit fly embryo to contouring molecules that help distinguish tail from head;,,, In each instance, biophysicists have calculated, the system couldn’t get faster, more sensitive or more efficient without first relocating to an alternate universe with alternate physical constants.
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....an-we.html

    As far as intelligently designed man-made cameras are concerned, this level of optimization borders on being science fiction. As the following article states, “Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”

    Study suggests humans can detect even the smallest units of light – July 21, 2016
    Excerpt: Research,, has shown that humans can detect the presence of a single photon, the smallest measurable unit of light. Previous studies had established that human subjects acclimated to the dark were capable only of reporting flashes of five to seven photons.,,,
    it is remarkable: a photon, the smallest physical entity with quantum properties of which light consists, is interacting with a biological system consisting of billions of cells, all in a warm and wet environment,” says Vaziri. “The response that the photon generates survives all the way to the level of our awareness despite the ubiquitous background noise. Any man-made detector would need to be cooled and isolated from noise to behave the same way.”,,,
    The gathered data from more than 30,000 trials demonstrated that humans can indeed detect a single photon incident on their eye with a probability significantly above chance.
    “What we want to know next is how does a biological system achieve such sensitivity? How does it achieve this in the presence of noise?”
    http://phys.org/news/2016-07-humans-smallest.html

    To be blunt, it is sheer insanity to believe that unguided Darwinian processes can possibly construct a visual system that greatly outclasses any intelligently designed camera that man has ever built.

    podcast – Dr. Brian Miller examines evolutionary explanations for the development of the eye. What is needed to build a complex eye? And how long would it take to get the necessary coordinated mutations? Miller argues the eye presents multiple insurmountable problems for evolution
    https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/intelligentdesign/episodes/2017-04-03T15_09_20-07_00

    The Evolution of the Eye, Demystified – Otangelo Grasso – February 24, 2020
    We have, so far, only scratched the surface. But we can safely say that the origin of both vision and its key player, rhodopsins, cannot be explained by the evolutionary mechanisms of random mutations and natural selection. Instead they must have existed from inception as a unified and codified system. Such an observation, I believe, is best explained by intelligent design.
    https://evolutionnews.org/2020/02/the-evolution-of-the-eye-demystified/

  14. 14
    jerry says:

    But Sev IS imprisoned by Scientism.

    Seversky is one of the biggest proponents of ID on this site. He has never once provided any rationale for not accepting it.

    He has access to the world out there which is critical of ID but fails to come back with anything that would lead anyone to not accept ID. So do all the other so called critics of ID.

    If that’s not an endorsement of ID, I fail to see what could be better. It’s almost as if someone is paying the critics of ID to post here. Their objections are so specious.

  15. 15
    asauber says:

    “He has access to the world out there which is critical of ID”

    He defers to his Betters. Their thinking is way above his. They are lord and he is subject. He refuses to think independently. Behold the Inferior Intellect.

    Andrew

  16. 16
    JVL says:

    Jerry: He has access to the world out there which is critical of ID but fails to come back with anything that would lead anyone to not accept ID. So do all the other so called critics of ID.

    How about: no known intelligent designers about . . . .when was it exactly? Who did what exactly?

    I know you think you have no questions about how intelligent design came about and was implemented but it’s not clear to me and the ID community as a whole has not addressed those issues.

    How can others accept your point of view when they don’t really know what you are saying? Why not spell it out specifically?

  17. 17
    martin_r says:

    seversky @1: “The lesson is that we are still learning. ”

    no seversky… you Darwinists have infested the whole world with just-so stories, and this is the result.

    As we can see with every new day, these just-so stories have nothing to do with reality…

    “… more complex that thought ….”
    “… it challenges a long-held theory…”
    “… it upends a common view…”
    “… it shakes up the dogma … ”
    “… it needs a rethink … ”
    “… the findings are surprising and unexpected …. ”
    “… earlier than thought…”
    “… younger than thought….”
    “… smarter than thought ….”

    in Darwinian ‘science’, using these words now became a rule, not an exception… it is a shame… Darwinism is as wrong as it can be… and i am sure, it will get much worse …

  18. 18
    martin_r says:

    Some expert here?

    So now the following is is wrong?

    Livescience.com (2008):

    “People with blue eyes have a single, common ancestor, according to new research.”

    “A team of scientists has tracked down a genetic mutation that leads to blue eyes. The mutation occurred between 6,000 and 10,000 years ago. Before then, there were no blue eyes.

    “Originally, we all had brown eyes,” said Hans Eiberg from the Department of Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Copenhagen.

    The mutation affected the so-called OCA2 gene, which is involved in the production of melanin, the pigment that gives color to our hair, eyes and skin”

    https://www.livescience.com/9578-common-ancestor-blue-eyes.html


    Do i get this right? So no single mutation cause blue eye? I am a bit confused… could someone explain ?

  19. 19
    JVL says:

    Martin_r: Do i get this right? So no single mutation cause blue eye? I am a bit confused… could someone explain ?

    I think you should just wait and see how it all plays out later. Don’t take every publication that seriously.

  20. 20
    asauber says:

    “Originally, we all had brown eyes,”

    I never had brown eyes.

    Andrew

  21. 21
    asauber says:

    “Don’t take every publication that seriously.”

    Already there.

    Andrew

  22. 22
    martin_r says:

    JVL

    i am just confused.
    2008: ““A team of scientists has tracked down a genetic mutation that leads to blue eyes.”
    2021: 50 genes are responsible for eyes color, so it can’t be a single genetic mutation, can it?

    So which one to take seriously ?

  23. 23
    asauber says:

    This is a nice little progression:

    “Previously, scientists thought that variation in eye colour was controlled by one or two genes only”

    “previous research in which scientists had identified a dozen genes linked to eye colour”

    “Researchers have identified 50 new genes for eye color in a study ”

    And then…

    “The findings are exciting because they bring us to a step closer to understanding the genes”

    Yeah, I nearly peed my jeans when I read the headline. 😉

    Andrew

  24. 24
    count of crisco says:

    Andrew

    I never had brown eyes.”

    But don’t it make my brown eyes blue?

  25. 25
    asauber says:

    “But don’t it make my brown eyes blue?”

    Count of Crisco,

    I was thinking the exact same thing!

    Andrew

  26. 26
    JVL says:

    Martin_r: So which one to take seriously ?

    No idea. Why not just wait and see how things resolve?

  27. 27
    bornagain77 says:

    From the article,

    In addition, the team found that eye colour in Asians with different shades of brown is genetically similar to eye colour in Europeans ranging from dark brown to light blue.

    If I’m reading this correctly, they are saying similar variations in different populations resulted in going from dark brown to light brown in one population, and dark brown to light blue in another population.

    Yet, if the variations were random, as is held in Darwin’s theory, then we would not expect similar variations to occur in different populations.

    This similarity, again if I am reading it right, points to ‘top-down’ directed mutations instead of the ‘bottom-up’ random mutations of Darwinian evolution.

    Of note:

    “It is difficult (if not impossible) to find a genome change operator that is truly random in its action within the DNA of the cell where it works. All careful studies of mutagenesis find statistically significant non-random patterns”
    James Shapiro – Evolution: A View From The 21st Century – (Page 82)

    Evolution Is Not Random (At Least, Not Totally)
    By Tanya Lewis October 02, 2014
    Excerpt: “So in the end, most mutation is not random, at least for the DNA sequences we analyzed here,”
    https://www.livescience.com/48103-evolution-not-random.html

  28. 28

    .

    JVL: How about: no known intelligent designers about …

    This is the profit that JVL gains by applying a gratuitous double-standard to widely available evidence for design in biology.. He cannot give up this double-standard because, clearly, he is not only unable to refute the science and history behind the design inference, but he quite agrees with it. Additionally, he not only concurs with the logic behind the design inference, he uses it himself in the exact same conditions to draw the exact same inference — hence the unbearable need for a double-standard, along with the frozen intellect (and hypocrisy) that follows..

    Not surprisingly, he would also like a hall pass on the whole logical fallacy thing, and would very much prefer that I just shut up about it.

    Actually, his desires are really very simple. He would like to stay here and attack people without being bothered by the science and history he wishes to ignore, or the flawed reasoning he uses to ignore it. And as would be expected, he regularly acts out by attacking me for not granting him his simple wish.

    You came here and announced that there was no evidence of design in ID arguments. That position is patently false, so I took the time to lead you through the evidence you say doesn’t exist (specifically, the semiotic argument). Because of the nature of that evidence (being coherent, widely accepted, and historically accurate) you were unable to disagree with any of it. Indeed, you concurred with the each of the key observations that make up the design inference. You even asked to have some time to think about what you had been told, but eventually began the “others disagree” bit as a means to close off the conversation. You then jumped to another conversation and virtually the first thing out of your mouth (amazingly) was your apparent excitement over the design inference in SETI. You will notice that this is the snippet I keep re-posting each time you return to your attack on ID (as you did on Monday, which prompted this current exchange)

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    JVL: I would not be surprised at all if we find electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings in other solar systems

    UB: How would we know if we found “electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings”? What would that be?

    JVL: Something like in the movie Contact. A signal that’s very clearly NOT produced by unguided processes. A signal which, after inspection, was shown to have compressed data.

    UB: So you accept encoded symbolic content as a universal inference to the presence of an unknown intelligence in one domain, while immediately denying that same physical evidence in another domain.

    Why the double standard?

    JVL: Because there is no plausible designer available.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    When you say “because there is no plausible designer available” you are offering up a distinction that simply doesn’t exist. Does it really not occur to you that neither scenario has a “designer available” until evidence of that designer is discovered and confirmed? You shouldn’t need me to point this out to you. It is specifically the finding of encoded symbolic content that confirms (beyond any reasonable doubt) it is the product of an intelligence. Clearly, if a signal was received from outer space that contained encoded symbolic content in it, then you, like everyone else on the surface of the planet, would immediately (and quite correctly) infer the presence of a previously unknown intelligence. That is to say, the presence of encoded symbolic content is a universal correlate of intelligence. Do you see how that works, JVL? Before the confirmation of a universal correlate, there is no evidence of an intelligence in either scenario. After the confirmation of a universal correlate, the evidence of a previously unknown intelligence objectively exists in both scenarios. But that logical continuity is not how you treat the evidence. You treat the evidence with a gratuitous double standard. In the SETI scenario, encoded symbolic content is a universal correlate of intelligence. In the ID scenario, it isn’t. And it should come as no surprise that if encoded symbolic content is not a universal correlate of intelligence in the second scenario, then it can’t be that in the first scenario either. But does this logical inconsistency bother you? No, it serves your ideological purposes, and that is why you invoke it.

    You are a smart enough person, and I don’t really believe for a moment that you can’t see how you are applying a double standard. If you also have a fair sense of self-awareness, you may even recognize that you are doing it for purely non-scientific (ideological) reasons. So what does all this mean? It certainly means the same when you do it as it means when anyone else does it.

    You’ve seen a Periodic Table; you know without a doubt that Peirce’s triadic relationship
    (symbol/referent/interpretant) is a fundamental physical requirement to specify something in this lawfully determined universe. Not only does logic demand it, but it is a universal observation without a single exception recorded anywhere at anytime. You know without a doubt that John von Neumann predicted a high-capacity system of symbols and constraints as the fundamental requirement of autonomous open-ended self-replication. It is a matter of historical record. You know without a doubt that each of the key objects required to confirm von Neumann’s prediction were discovered one by one without exception (Crick, Brenner, Hoagland, Zamecnik, Nirenberg, etc). Nobel awards were handed out along the way. And you know that the entire resulting system has been carefully described in the literature using the language of physics, and additionally, that the only other system known to science that operates in the same way is that of human language – a universal correlate of intelligence.

    You knew all of this before you applied a double-standard between SETI and ID.

  29. 29
    EDTA says:

    Sev,
    >So either He didn’t care or He wasn’t there.

    Please make this into a formal philosophical argument, so that we can more closely examine it. Thanks.

    JVL @ 19,
    >Don’t take every publication that seriously.
    Um…are you sure you mean that? That would undercut your ability to cite any scientific literature here in the future.

    @ 26,
    >Why not just wait and see how things resolve?

    If all the researchers would do the same, then OK. 😎 Actually, we have every right to examine and discuss (and point out contradictions in) claims made to the public.

  30. 30
    ET says:

    JVL is still confused. Evolutionism is supposed to be all about the how and yet evos have nothing but stories. They don’t know how. They don’t know when. They can’t even test their own claims!

    So it’s very telling that, thanks to Newton’s four rules of scientific reasoning, they have all of the power to falsify ID and instead have to flail away with their ignorance. Pathetic, really.

  31. 31
    JVL says:

    ET: JVL is still confused. Evolutionism is supposed to be all about the how and yet evos have nothing but stories. They don’t know how. They don’t know when. They can’t even test their own claims!

    Why is it that no one seems to have any interest in any scientific inquiry into what happens after design is detected? Why is there no research agenda? IF ID isn’t a science stopper then where is the science after design detection? Which would go into when and how.

    So it’s very telling that, thanks to Newton’s four rules of scientific reasoning, they have all of the power to falsify ID and instead have to flail away with their ignorance. Pathetic, really.

    Uh huh. Weird how thousands of evolutionary researchers are getting millions of dollars in grants to do research while ID proponents just keep publishing popular books which reiterate the same points over and over again.

    IF ID isn’t a science stopper then where is the science after design is detected? What are the questions to try and find answers to? What questions do you have in particular you’d like to see researched and explored?

  32. 32

    .

    Why is it that no one seems to have any interest in any scientific inquiry into what happens after design is detected?

    “What happened“ was logically inferred by “what had to happen” — i.e. the physical organization required to bring about the necessary physical effect. This inference formed a prediction that was later determined by experiment to be true. You completely ignore these things because they are in conflict with your personal ideology. Instead, you insist that science and reason be put on hold as we all wait for the demonstration of an unknown and unspecified process (which is a non-falsifiable program) rendering science unable to correct itself and eliminating a critical hallmark of scientific methodology.

    In other words, for no reason other than your own self-interest, you want to rebrand proper scientific reasoning as a “science stopper” so that you can indulge yourself in your own personal beliefs. And you actually expect no one to notice.

    EDIT: and let us not forget your blatant double-standard (see comment #28)

    JVL: I would not be surprised at all if we find electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings in other solar systems

    UB: How would we know if we found “electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings”? What would that be?

    JVL: Something like in the movie Contact. A signal that’s very clearly NOT produced by unguided processes. A signal which, after inspection, was shown to have compressed data.

    UB: So you accept encoded symbolic content as a universal inference to the presence of an unknown intelligence in one domain, while immediately denying that same physical evidence in another domain.

    Why the double standard?

    JVL: Because there is no plausible designer available.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    When you say “because there is no plausible designer available” you are offering up a distinction that simply doesn’t exist. Does it really not occur to you that neither scenario has a “designer available” until evidence of that designer is discovered and confirmed? You shouldn’t need me to point this out to you. It is specifically the finding of encoded symbolic content that confirms (beyond any reasonable doubt) it is the product of an intelligence. Clearly, if a signal was received from outer space that contained encoded symbolic content in it, then you, like everyone else on the surface of the planet, would immediately (and quite correctly) infer the presence of a previously unknown intelligence. That is to say, the presence of encoded symbolic content is a universal correlate of intelligence. Do you see how that works, JVL? Before the confirmation of a universal correlate, there is no evidence of an intelligence in either scenario. After the confirmation of a universal correlate, the evidence of a previously unknown intelligence objectively exists in both scenarios. But that logical continuity is not how you treat the evidence. You treat the evidence with a gratuitous double standard. In the SETI scenario, encoded symbolic content is a universal correlate of intelligence. In the ID scenario, it isn’t. And it should come as no surprise that if encoded symbolic content is not a universal correlate of intelligence in the second scenario, then it can’t be that in the first scenario either. But does this logical inconsistency bother you? No, it serves your ideological purposes, and that is why you invoke it.

    You are a smart enough person, and I don’t really believe for a moment that you can’t see how you are applying a double standard. If you also have a fair sense of self-awareness, you may even recognize that you are doing it for purely non-scientific (ideological) reasons. So what does all this mean? It certainly means the same when you do it as it means when anyone else does it.

    You’ve seen a Periodic Table; you know without a doubt that Peirce’s triadic relationship
    (symbol/referent/interpretant) is a fundamental physical requirement to specify something in this lawfully determined universe. Not only does logic demand it, but it is a universal observation without a single exception recorded anywhere at anytime. You know without a doubt that John von Neumann predicted a high-capacity system of symbols and constraints as the fundamental requirement of autonomous open-ended self-replication. It is a matter of historical record. You know without a doubt that each of the key objects required to confirm von Neumann’s prediction were discovered one by one without exception (Crick, Brenner, Hoagland, Zamecnik, Nirenberg, etc). Nobel awards were handed out along the way. And you know that the entire resulting system has been carefully described in the literature using the language of physics, and additionally, that the only other system known to science that operates in the same way is that of human language – a universal correlate of intelligence.

  33. 33
    JVL says:

    Upright Biped: “What happened“ was logically inferred by “what had to happen” — i.e. the physical organization required to bring about the necessary physical effect. This inference formed a prediction that was later determined by experiment to be true. You completely ignore these things because they are in conflict with your personal ideology.

    I don’t ignore them. But there is disagreement about these issues on the particular case we’re discussing. You don’t think there is any question but many others do. The most neutral response would be to say: we don’t know . . . yet.

    Instead, you insist that science and reason be put on hold as we all wait for the demonstration of an unknown and unspecified process (which is a non-falsifiable program) rendering science unable to correct itself and eliminating a critical hallmark of scientific methodology.

    In fact science and reason are not being put on hold by evolutionary theory. There’s lots of work and research going on. And, I can’t help but notice, that when science does correct itself many ID proponents make fun of it for getting something wrong. And by the way . . . what kind of ID research is going on?

    In other words, for no reason other than your own self-interest, you want to rebrand proper scientific reasoning as a “science stopper” so that you can indulge yourself in your own personal beliefs. And you actually expect no one to notice.

    I have asked over and over and over again: what is the ID research agenda? What outstanding ID questions should the ID community be looking into? And you know what responses I’ve gotten? Almost nothing. MOST ID proponents haven’t got any unanswered ID questions, they can’t tell me a possible (let alone an existing) ID research program.

    Show me that ID isn’t a science stopper: tell me some unanswered ID questions you think should be researched. Tell me a viable ID research agenda. That would be a very interesting and pertinent topic of conversation I would love to have. I have some ideas of my own (from the ID point of view) but I’d love to hear yours.

    When you say “because there is no plausible designer available” you are offering up a distinction that simply doesn’t exist. Does it really not occur to you that neither scenario has a “designer available” until evidence of that designer is discovered and confirmed?

    You love to miscatagorise my views.

    About the detection of alien beings via detected interstellar signals: IF we discover something that MIGHT be from another (alien) civilisation I am not prepared to accept that that is the case until well after it’s been looked at and scrutinised by all relevant experts in the field. A signal is going to have to pass a high bar before it and it alone is accepted as an indication of intelligent alien lifeforms. Also, I would expect people to look for other evidence that the signal source was a home to intelligent aliens; i.e. looking at their home system to try and find other indications that life exists there. This is as it should be: discovering an intelligent alien civilisation would be an extraordinary thing and we have to be incredibly sure before we assert that that has happened. Preferably we have several threads of evidence to make the case solid.

    Compare that to ID: when the relevant experts in the field (biology) DO NOT accept that the design inference is correct then I try and keep an open mind and consider if there is any other evidence available of a designer. There isn’t any. So: the relevant experts don’t see evidence of a designer in DNA and there isn’t other evidence. When I say: because there is no other evidence of a designer that is the state I consider the debate to be at: the design inference is not accepted; is there other evidence? And the answer is always, even from ID proponents: no, we don’t have any other physical evidence.

    It is specifically the finding of encoded symbolic content that confirms (beyond any reasonable doubt) it is the product of an intelligence.

    And yet, the pertinent experts in the biological sciences disagree with you. And, I think, some of the experts in semiotic theory disagree with you. At least they didn’t immediately accept that there had to be an intelligent designer behind DNA.

    Why don’t we talk about a possible ID research agenda? I honestly think that would be interesting and enlightening.

  34. 34

    .

    When you say “because there is no plausible designer available” you are offering up a distinction that simply doesn’t exist. Does it really not occur to you that neither scenario has a “designer available” until evidence of that designer is discovered and confirmed?

    You love to miscatagorise my views.

    Mischaracterize your views?

    Here are your views:

    JVL: I would not be surprised at all if we find electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings in other solar systems

    UB: How would we know if we found “electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings”? What would that be?

    JVL: Something like in the movie Contact. A signal that’s very clearly NOT produced by unguided processes. A signal which, after inspection, was shown to have compressed data.

    UB: So you accept encoded symbolic content as a universal inference to the presence of an unknown intelligence in one domain, while immediately denying that same physical evidence in another domain.

    Why the double standard?

    JVL: Because there is no plausible designer available.

    You have a blatant double standard in your reasoning.

  35. 35
    JVL says:

    Upright Biped: Here are your views:

    I just went into my views in greater depth. You choose to ignore that. You seem to prefer a cartoon version of my views that’s got stuck in your head. You choose to ignore further data that has been brought to the table. Why not self-correct your own views?

    Also, you have chosen NOT to even attempt to respond to my sincere queries about an ID research agenda. Why is that? Surely it has one, all sciences do. But somehow, no one can even give me a tentative one.

  36. 36
    EDTA says:

    JVL,
    Why don’t you join us, and then work on answering those questions from our perspective(s)?

  37. 37
    JVL says:

    EDTA: Why don’t you join us, and then work on answering those questions from our perspective(s)?

    I’m happy to discuss a possible ID research agenda with you. As an outsider I think I can provide a perspective of what would help make the ID case to those who aren’t ‘with you’. Plus, I think sometimes it’s helpful to get someone’s perspective who is not in your camp. Finally, I’m really interested in where ID can go forward and how.

  38. 38

    .

    I just went into my views in greater depth. You choose to ignore that.

    Ignore it? What did you add that negates the double standard in your reasoning? Please point it out specifically. Let there be no ambiguity about it.

    Also, you have chosen NOT to even attempt to respond to my sincere queries about an ID research agenda.

    That is irrelevant to the issue of your double standard. Your position is that there is no evidence for design in biology. I gave you that material and historical evidence. You not only cannot argue against that material and historical evidence, you agree to it. You then apply a double standard in order to avoid the conflict with your prior position. That is the issue.

  39. 39
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: Ignore it? What did you add that negates the double standard in your reasoning? Please point it out specifically. Let there be no ambiguity about it.

    In both cases I think the possible design/coded information should be examined by pertinent experts in the field to build a good case that it’s not down to natural or unguided causes. That might not get us to 100% surety since there might be some natural causes we’re unaware of but it’s a start.

    I would like to see additionally other evidence that the hypothesised intelligent beings existed at the pertinent time. In the case of signals from another solar system that might include other astronomical observations that add plausibility to the design inference. That other evidence may, in fact, be stronger than the disputed designed object or signal which is another reason I think it should be pursued vigorously in the case of ID. In the case of alien beings (possible intelligent designers!) a discovery of a crashed space ship would be pretty convincing even without a detected interstellar signal.

    So, for both: any suspected designed object or signal must be heavily scrutinised and examined by pertinent experts. Additional evidence should be sought out and also scrutinised. The more threads of evidence the better.

    Both situations are extraordinary claims/hypothesise so the case must be rock-solid before a definite decision is made.

    That is irrelevant to the issue of your double standard. Your position is that there is no evidence for design in biology. I gave you that material and historical evidence. You not only cannot argue against that material and historical evidence, you agree to it.

    I agree that that sort of thing might be indicative of design but that all such things must be closely examined by pertinent experts. So far, ID has not passed the scrutiny of the pertinent experts in the pertinent field. Given that I looked for other evidence of intelligent designers and found none. Which is why I made the comment: no evidence of an intelligent designer; I was assuming it was accepted that the design inference has NOT been accepted by the pertinent experts in the field.

    You then apply a double standard in order to avoid the conflict with your prior position. That is the issue.

    I have elucidated and expanded my views in an attempt to resolve what you think is a double standard.

    If I spoke off the cuff and without sufficient depth of explanation in the past then I have tried to rectify that situation. Please take this extra data onboard and reconsider your opinion of my views.

    So, what’s it to be: can we discuss a possible ID research agenda?

  40. 40

    .
    So, you are abandoning your original position, that is, that a signal containing symbolic data is a universal correlate of intelligence. Having “experts” determine the presence of symbolic content is irrelevant — because it is a given in either case — so that is not the issue at hand. But you now foresee the possibility of receiving a signal that contains data of some sort, and not inferring an intelligent cause.

    Is that correct?

  41. 41
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: So, you are abandoning your original position, that is, that a signal containing symbolic data is a universal correlate of intelligence.

    Perhaps . . . I admit to, at one point, just accepting that to be the case. I think discussing the issue with you has got me to think about it all much more carefully.

    I think the crucial point is determining how the signal came to be produced. There is some evidence suggesting how DNA arose from chemical affinities. Does that mean the data is not purely symbolic? Maybe so. Maybe it’s not a ‘code’ then. What is a ‘code’? Mathematically? Biologically? Did biologists use the term correctly?

    I can’t quite conceive how an interstellar signal could contain the prime numbers but I will defer to those who know more than I do. The universe seems more and more queer and complicated the more we examine it.

    I think we have to take things on a case-by-case basis. Typically ideologies fail because they decide what’s true and what’s not ahead of time.

    Having “experts” determine the presence of symbolic content is a given in either case, so that is not the issue at hand.

    Good. We definitely agree on that.

    But you now foresee the possibility of receiving a signal that contains data of some sort, and not inferring an intelligent cause.

    What kind of data? For example: it’s widely accepted that we have now detected (via gravitational waves) two black holes colliding. (I think that’s right.). That’s information, that’s data, but it didn’t come from an intelligent source. The first 20 prime numbers . . . that I can’t see arising via natural processes but the Fibonacci numbers occur in nature so . . .

    For decades biologists have referred the the genetic ‘code’ and mathematically that means it’s arbitrary. But if it isn’t then should we change the word from ‘code’ to . . . scheme? Have we got sucked into an argument about the use of a term instead of trying to get to the basic question: how did it arise?

    Perhaps one thing that would be productive is for ID proponents and evolutionary theorists to agree to a common set of terms and their meanings?

  42. 42

    .

    I can’t quite conceive how an interstellar signal could contain the prime numbers but I will defer to those who know more than I do.

    So in the effort to un-ass yourself from the obvious double-standard in your reasoning, (and still avoid the design inference at all costs), you’ll now imagine the possibility of receiving a signal from space containing — symbolically, the only way it can — a series of prime numbers, and not inferring an intelligence.

    The problem, of course (which you are fully aware of) is that none of “those who know more than I do” would say such a silly thing, or take such a silly position. In your pretzel logic, you are now appealing to people who (you do not even believe) exist.

    And tomorrow, you’ll be back here on UD, chastising people for their reasoning, talking up scientific subject matter, continuing in your personal attack on ID.

  43. 43
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: So in the effort to un-ass yourself from the obvious double-standard in your reasoning, and still avoid the design inference, you’ll now imagine the possibility of receiving a signal from space containing — symbolically, the only way it can — a series of prime numbers, and not inferring an intelligence.

    I have no idea! Like I said, nature spits out the Fibonacci numbers all the time. Just because we think the prime numbers are somehow special maybe there is a natural phenomena for which they are just an everyday occurrence.

    The problem, of course (which you are fully aware of) is that none of “those who know more than I do” who would say such a thing, or take such a position. In your pretzel logic, you are now appealing to people who (you do not even believe) exist.

    You seem entirely concerned with NOT finding any common ground in our views, which is sad. I’d rather focus on the stuff we agree on.

    AND I’d love to talk about an ID research agenda. But you’re not going to do that. You’d rather make me look foolish and stupid.

    Do you want your view to gain acceptance? Are you able to build on any common ground you might have with your detractors or is it only: your way or no way?

    And tomorrow, you’ll be back here on UD, chastising people for their reasoning, talking up scientific subject matter, continuing in your personal attack on ID.

    It really is just your way or no way. Is that how science is done? There can be no detractors or even those you disagree with?

    I’m happy to discuss issues, flag up the things we disagree on, talk about things like an ID research agenda, etc.

    You don’t want to do any of those things. You’re right, I’m wrong and if I don’t agree with you then I’m stupid and should shut up. Perhaps I will just do that; I’m not sure there’s a point to trying and having a real conversation.

  44. 44

    .

    I’d rather focus on the stuff we agree on.

    We agree that a high capacity system of symbols and constraints was predicted as the fundamental requirement of autonomous self-replication. We agree that each of the material objects required of that system was discovered one by one inside the cell via experiment. We agree that the gene system has been coherently described in the physics literature as a genuine symbolic process, and that it is noted in that literature that the only other such system known to science is human language. We agree that SETI would immediately infer the presence of a previously unknown intelligence from the reception of any signal containing symbolic content.

    You then apply a double standard to avoid the design inference.

  45. 45
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: We agree that that a high capacity system of symbols and constraints was predicted as the fundamental requirement of autonomous self-replication.

    Symbols meaning arbitrary choices. Do we know that’s true though? Is that accounting for all the research and data? Not the ‘predicted’ part, sure people predict things. But is the prediction true?

    When I was reading Dr Pattee’s work he was talking about abstract systems; how much can we apply those to actual living systems? I’m not sure how closely they are parallel. I accept his work in the abstract sense, in the applied case . . . what did he say about that?

    We agree that the gene system has been coherently described in the physics literature are a genuine symbolic process, and that it is noted in that literature that the only other such system known to science is human language.

    Are you including mathematics in that? Not sure if that’s part of human language . . .

    Anyway, IF the gene ‘system’ is based on chemical affinities then it’s not purely arbitrary or symbolic. Even if it’s been described in that way.

    We agree that SETI would immediately confirm the reception of any signal containing a symbolic content as a scientific inference to a previously unknown intelligence.

    That’s getting a bit tricky . . . what would be a signal containing symbolic content look like? A stream of numbers (like the primes) seems an obvious choice . . . as long as we’re sure nature can’t generate them without guidance.

    A signal that could be ‘interpreted’ as an image or music . . . maybe. But what is an image? What is music? If a being whose site was laterally shifted heavily into the infrared sent us an image would we even interpret it as such?

    See, this is why I’d defer to the experts in the field who spend a lot of time thinking about this. I used to think: yeah, that’s all easy and clear. I’m not sure now. I think we should be looking, I think it’s worth doing. I’m just not sure how we’d make a definitive call. It all seems immensely complicated.

    I don’t think the consensus of the people working on these topics is to conclude that our biological systems are the result of some intelligent designer. I haven’t seem them come to that conclusion. Perhaps your argument is really with them and not with me?

    I’m really sad that you won’t discuss an ID research agenda. I see that as a way to work out some of the differences we have on some of these issues. You seem to have drawn a line in the sand and aren’t going to change it. That’s too bad. All science is provisional, i.e. it has to accept that it might be incorrect when new data and evidence comes in. I think that means you have to accept that sometimes the lines change. I think that means that you should be discussing views differing from your own. I think that means you might be wrong.

  46. 46
    JVL says:

    Is the genetic ‘code’ a real, arbitrary code? Maybe not. From Wikipedia:

    Three main hypotheses address the origin of the genetic code. Many models belong to one of them or to a hybrid:[72]

    Random freeze: the genetic code was randomly created. For example, early tRNA-like ribozymes may have had different affinities for amino acids, with codons emerging from another part of the ribozyme that exhibited random variability. Once enough peptides were coded for, any major random change in the genetic code would have been lethal; hence it became “frozen”.[73]

    Stereochemical affinity: the genetic code is a result of a high affinity between each amino acid and its codon or anti-codon; the latter option implies that pre-tRNA molecules matched their corresponding amino acids by this affinity. Later during evolution, this matching was gradually replaced with matching by aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases.[71][74][75]
    Optimality: the genetic code continued to evolve after its initial creation, so that the current code maximizes some fitness function, usually some kind of error minimization.[71][72]

    None of which includes an intelligent designer. Sorry.

  47. 47
    JVL says:

    Also from Wikipedia:

    Biosemiotics (from the Greek ???? bios, “life” and ??????????? s?mei?tikos, “observant of signs”) is a field of semiotics and biology that studies the prelinguistic meaning-making, or production and interpretation of signs and codes and their communication in the biological realm.[1]

    Biosemiotics attempts to integrate the findings of biology and semiotics and proposes a paradigmatic shift in the scientific view of life, in which semiosis (sign process, including meaning and interpretation) is one of its immanent and intrinsic features. The term biosemiotic was first used by Friedrich S. Rothschild in 1962, but Thomas Sebeok and Thure von Uexküll have implemented the term and field.[2] The field, which challenges normative views of biology, is generally divided between theoretical and applied biosemiotics.

    Biosemiotics is biology interpreted as a sign systems study, or, to elaborate, a study of

    signification, communication and habit formation of living processes
    semiosis (creating and changing sign relations) in living nature
    the biological basis of all signs and sign interpretation

    According to the basic types of semiosis under study, biosemiotics can be divided into

    vegetative semiotics (also endosemiotics, or phytosemiotics),[3] the study of semiosis at the cellular and molecular level (including the translation processes related to genome and the organic form or phenotype);[4] vegetative semiosis occurs in all organisms at their cellular and tissue level; vegetative semiotics includes prokaryote semiotics, sign-mediated interactions in bacteria communities such as quorum sensing and quorum quenching.
    zoosemiotics or animal semiotics,[5] or the study of animal forms of knowing;[6] animal semiosis occurs in the organisms with neuromuscular system, also includes anthroposemiotics, the study of semiotic behavior in humans.
    According to the dominant aspect of semiosis under study, the following labels have been used: biopragmatics, biosemantics, and biosyntactics.

    So, this is not fringe or unknown in biological circles.

    In the 1980s a circle of mathematicians active in Theoretical Biology, René Thom (Institut des Hautes Etudes Scientifiques), Yannick Kergosien (Dalhousie University and Institut des Hautes Etudes Scientifiques), and Robert Rosen (Dalhousie University, also a former member of the Buffalo group with Howard H. Pattee), explored the relations between Semiotics and Biology using such headings as “Nature Semiotics”,[8][9] “Semiophysics”,[10] or “Anticipatory Systems” [11] and taking a modeling approach.

    So, it seems that biosemiotics is an accepted part of biological reasoning and modelling. No longer controversial and not supportive of intelligent design.

    Sorry.

  48. 48

    .

    Symbols meaning arbitrary choices.

    Just like it states in the literature JVL.

    Symbols, meaning a rate-independent medium and a set of non-integrable constraints.

    Do we know that’s true though?

    Yes

    Is that accounting for all the research and data?

    Yes

    Not the ‘predicted’ part, sure people predict things. But is the prediction true?

    Yes. It was predicted, and the prediction was confirmed.

    When I was reading Dr Pattee’s work he was talking about abstract systems; how much can we apply those to actual living systems?

    That is absolutely false. Pattee was talking specifically about the gene system.

    I accept his work in the abstract sense, in the applied case . . . what did he say about that?

    He said: “Evolution requires the genotype-phenotype distinction, a primeval epistemic cut that separates energy-degenerate, rate-independent genetic symbols from the rate-dependent dynamics of construction that they control.”

    You just can’t do it, can you JVL? You stand in front of physical evidence and recorded history — evidence that you know is valid, using logic that you yourself espouse, and you can’t even say the words. Look at you, twisting and turning, anything but acknowledge the plainly documented fact that there is valid evidence of design in biology. It actually doesn’t even falsify your belief system but that doesn’t matter because your ideology doesn’t allow you to give an inch. You’d have to live with facts, and its just not worth it. You’d rather be made to squirm for words than to give up your protected and closed mind

    IF the gene ‘system’ is based on chemical affinities then it’s not purely arbitrary or symbolic

    This comment betrays your position. Prediction, confirmation, physical measurement, and universal observation say that it is genuinely symbolic. In spite of this, and with no contradictory evidence to support your beliefs, you believe that unguided forces could have produced it. You even capitalize the word “IF” in your comment. “IF” it was shown that pre-biotic processes could establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints, THEN then the design inference would be falsified. That is the full meaning of your statement. And by logical extension, if such has not been shown, then the design inference (the prediction, confirmation, physical measurement, and universal experience) stands. But when you comment on this blog, that is not your position. Your position is that such evidence of design does not exist – which is a gratuitous falsehood. You are being asked to acknowledge the documented scientific facts and history, and you just can’t do it.

    Thus, being unable to refute the evidence, you insist on a double standard.

  49. 49
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: He said: “Evolution requires the genotype-phenotype distinction, a primeval epistemic cut that separates energy-degenerate, rate-independent genetic symbols from the rate-dependent dynamics of construction that they control.”

    But he did not say: therefore Intelligent Design. That is also true.

    You just can’t do it, can you JVL? You stand in front of physical evidence and recorded history — evidence that you know is valid, using logic that you yourself espouse, and you can’t even say the words. Look at you, twisting and turning, anything but acknowledge the plainly documented fact that there is valid evidence of design in biology. It actually doesn’t even falsify your belief system but that doesn’t matter because your ideology doesn’t allow you to give an inch. You’d have to live with facts, and its just not worth it. You’d rather be made to squirm for words than to give up your protected and closed mind

    I don’t know why you care so much. Plenty of other people than me have looked at the same stuff you’re presenting and NOT come to the ID conclusion. But you insist on following me on this blog and try and get me to capitulate. Why?

    This comment betrays your position. Prediction, confirmation, physical measurement, and universal observation say that it is genuinely symbolic.

    That just may not be true. You’re not accounting for all the research.

    In spite of this, and with no contradictory evidence to support your beliefs,

    Ignoring the fact that I referenced a Wikipedia article which is referenced.

    you believe that unguided forces could have produced it.

    Correct. Could have. And I’m in agreement with a vast majority of working biologists.

    You even capitalize the word “IF” in your comment. “IF” it was shown that pre-biotic processes could establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints, THEN then the design inference would be falsified. That is the full meaning of your statement. And by logical extension, if such has not been shown, then the design inference (the prediction, confirmation, physical measurement, and universal experience) stands.

    No, just because the unguided paradigm hasn’t been locked in DOES NOT grant you the design paradigm. It doesn’t. That’s a false dichotomy.

    But when you comment on this blog, that is not your position. Your position is that such evidence of design does not exist – which is a gratuitous falsehood. You are being asked to acknowledge the documented scientific facts and history, and you just can’t do it.

    I never said the ‘evidence’ doesn’t exist, i said it wasn’t compelling.

    Thus, being unable to refute the evidence, you insist on a double standard.

    You need to acknowledge that interpreting the evidence differently from you is not the same as denying or refuting the evidence.

    I understand that you are very, very sure you are right. I get that. But you know that a lot of people disagree with you. And maybe you think that they are all in denial. Maybe so. But at some point you have to consider: is it tenable that a small group of people, including me, are saying something completely opposed to a vast number of other highly educated, intelligent people who have spent decades studying the issue in question? Can they all be in denial? Are they are really that blind to the truth and so afraid of their ideological and job positions that they just buy into some kind of party line? Is there really that big of a conspiracy to shut out ‘the truth’? Is that what you really believe?

    And then, on top of that, you won’t even participate in a conversation about what kind of research ID could pursue. A topic that I am interested in and would like to have. You just adamantly refuse to even consider having that conversation. Why is that? Instead of just trying to make me look stupid, again, why don’t you do me the favour of addressing that? I’m really interested.

  50. 50

    .

    JVL: IF the gene ‘system’ is based on chemical affinities then it’s not purely arbitrary or symbolic

    >UB: You even capitalize the word “IF” in your comment. “IF” was shown that pre-biotic processes could establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints, THEN then the design inference would be falsified. it That is the full meaning of your statement. And by logical extension, if such has not been shown, then the design inference (the prediction, confirmation, physical measurement, and universal experience) stands.

    JVL: No, just because the unguided paradigm hasn’t been locked in DOES NOT grant you the design paradigm. It doesn’t. That’s a false dichotomy.

    Oh boy. Let’s untangle this mess.

    1. Either the gene system displays evidence of an intelligent origin, or it doesn’t. That is not a false dichotomy. (?!) Either it does, or it doesn’t. That is the question.

    So your attempt to mis-characterize this question, and brush the science and history aside, fails immediately. It is completely flawed reasoning on your part. The facts remain.

    IF it was shown that pre-biotic processes could establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints, THEN then the design inference would be falsified. That has not happened (by a long shot). Therefore, the design inference, which is based on documented prediction, recorded experimental confirmation, physical analysis, and universal experience (none of which is even controversial), stands unfalsified by evidence to the contrary. It is no more a false dichotomy than asking if Bob Dylan wrote All Along the Watchtower, or if Dave Mason recorded it.

    2. It is not my interpretation that John Von Neumann predicted a high capacity system of symbols and constraints as the fundamental condition of autonomous open-ended self-replication. That is a historical fact. It is not my interpretation that each of the molecular objects required to fulfill that prediction were found via experiment. That is also a historical fact, broadly recognized. Similarly, it is not my interpretation that Pattee described the gene system from a physicists point of view, and further confirmed von Neumann as well as adding significant physical details to the observation. That is also a recorded fact. None of these things is even contested. It is not my interpretation that Pattee’s (and other) analysis includes the observation that the only other such physical system known to science is human language. Again, that is a recorded fact. In short, I am not asking (nor would I ask) to be “granted” the design inference. The design inference is already on the table through well-documented science and history – none of which is even controversial.

    I never said the ‘evidence’ doesn’t exist, i said it wasn’t compelling.

    Yes, you’ve said it isn’t compelling because there is no evidence of a designer available, which is the sacred talking point you rescue from facts and reason by applying a double standard to the evidence.

    Are you unable to understand these things? Of course you understand them, you just have no choice.

    ** The remainder of your post is more of the same; a) attack me for not shutting up. b) fallacious appeal to authority – none of which removes the blatant double-standard from your reasoning.

  51. 51

    .
    JVL, just so you don’t lose track … you apply a gratuitous double-standard to evidence in order to avoid the design inference. You’ve said absolutely nothing to remove that double standard from your reasoning.

    JVL: I would not be surprised at all if we find electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings in other solar systems

    UB: How would we know if we found “electromagnetic evidence of intelligent beings”? What would that be?

    JVL: Something like in the movie Contact. A signal that’s very clearly NOT produced by unguided processes. A signal which, after inspection, was shown to have compressed data.

    UB: So you accept encoded symbolic content as a universal inference to the presence of an unknown intelligence in one domain, while immediately denying that same physical evidence in another domain.

    Why the double standard?

    JVL: Because there is no plausible designer available.

  52. 52

    .
    JVL, while you’re on a roll, can you tell me what experimental evidence you have found that shows unguided forces can establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints?

    Since you obviously consider it compelling, what exactly is that evidence, and what exactly did it demonstrate? Did it demonstrate anything like a rate-independent memory being mediated by a set of non-integrable constraints? Did the authors acknowledge the physical requirement of such things, or did they detail an evidence-based pathway to achieving them? Since the constraints have to be fixed in memory, how did they explain semantic closure coming about?

  53. 53
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: JVL, while you’re on a roll, can you tell me what experimental evidence you have found that shows unguided forces can establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints?

    I would say that, since the preponderance of the evidence and the opinion of a vast majority of scientists think there was no grand designer, nature has already shown it’s capable of creating the genetic ‘code’. If it is a code. If it arose via chemical affinities (as some work seems to suggest) then it was chemistry and not abstract symbolism underlying the structure.

    Perhaps the best that can be said at this point is: we just don’t actually know how the genetic ‘code’ came about. Hopefully someday we will have a bit more surety.

    Yes, you’ve said it isn’t compelling because there is no evidence of a designer available, which is the sacred talking point you rescue from facts and reason by applying a double standard to the evidence.

    I have spent a lot of time trying to make my views clear. I’ll not bother you with trying anymore.

  54. 54
    jerry says:

    I’ll not bother you with trying anymore.

    Best comment yet!

  55. 55
    ET says:

    JVL:

    I would say that, since the preponderance of the evidence and the opinion of a vast majority of scientists think there was no grand designer, nature has already shown it’s capable of creating the genetic ‘code’.

    Liar. Nature has never been shown it’s capable of producing the genetic code. There isn’t any evidence against ID. The scientists who reject ID don’t have anything to account for our existence. So their opinion can be dismissed.

    The genetic code looks, acts and has all of the attributes of a coded information processing system.

    Everything we know says that code information processing systems only arise from intelligent agency volition. There isn’t any evidence that nature can produce it and there isn’t even a way to test the claim. So that claim can be dismissed, also.

  56. 56
    ET says:

    JVL:

    No, just because the unguided paradigm hasn’t been locked in DOES NOT grant you the design paradigm.

    That is true. Eliminating blind and mindless processes is only the start. Next, we use our knowledge of cause and effect relationships in accordance with Newton’s four rules of scientific reasoning. In other words, as Behe said back in 1996:

    “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.”

    That is the positive side. So, if we observe that and there isn’t any evidence that nature can do it, we infer intelligent design. Science 101. That is why JVL is so confused.

  57. 57
    JVL says:

    ET: That is true. Eliminating blind and mindless processes is only the start.

    I’ll let you argue with Upright BiPed on that point.

    Upright BiPed: IF it was shown that pre-biotic processes could establish a semantically-closed system of symbols and constraints, THEN then the design inference would be falsified. That has not happened (by a long shot). Therefore, the design inference, which is based on documented prediction, recorded experimental confirmation, physical analysis, and universal experience (none of which is even controversial), stands unfalsified by evidence to the contrary.

  58. 58

    .

    UB: I Since you obviously consider it compelling, what exactly is that evidence, and what exactly did it demonstrate?

    JVL If it arose via chemical affinities …

    Stereochemistry is your answer? Some bits stick together better than other bits?

    When you ask a sock puppet for specificity, so that there is no misunderstanding … and the answer comes back as vague as possible, then…?

    How does “some bits stick together better than other bits” explain the presence of a gene? No answer.

    How does “some bits stick together better than other bits” explain self-reference? No answer.

    How does “some bits stick together better than other bits” solve the measurement problem? No answer.

    How does “some bits stick together better than other bits” organize semantic closure? No answer.

    Saying that stereochemistry is a compelling explanation for the origin of the gene system is like saying “righty tighty lefty loosely” is a compelling explanation for the origin of the space shuttle. It is a compelling explanation that explains nothing whatsoever.

    Oh boy, but I bet if you could have gone to the literature (or Wikipedia, ha) and cut n’ pasted a detailed explanation, you damn sure would have, right!?! You would have posted it in ALL CAPS.

    But is doesn’t exist, does it, JVL.

    And in nutshell, that is why you are forced to keep the flawed double-standard in your reasoning — specifically because the design inference has actual documented evidence and history in support of it, and the materialist has nothing but “some bits stick together better than other bits”.

  59. 59
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: Stereochemistry is your answer? Some bits stick together better than other bits. When you ask a sock puppet for specificity, so that there is no misunderstanding, and the answer comes back as vague as possible, then…?

    It’s not really my field so I depend on experts in that field. Have you looked at the research which suggests the genetic ‘code’ isn’t an abstract/arbitrary code?

    Saying that stereochemistry is a compelling explanation for the origin of the gene system is like saying “righty tighty lefty loosely” is a compelling explanation for the origin of the space shuttle. It is a compelling explanation that explains nothing whatsoever.

    I didn’t say the evidence was now compelling but it seems to be a worthy area of research. Do you agree?

    Oh boy, but I bet if you could have gone to the literature (or Wikipedia, ha) and cut n’ pasted the a detailed explanation, you damn sure would, right!?! You would have posted it in ALL CAPS.

    No, I don’t do that. If you want to see the research behind the material I have published then you know where it is.

    But is (sic) doesn’t exist, does it, JVL.

    I think it does. Why don’t you go and look?

    And in nutshell, that is why you are forced to keep the flawed double-standard in your reasoning — specifically because the design inference has actual confirmed evidence and history in support of it, and the dirt-did-it team has nothing but “some bits stick together better than other bits”.

    I’m not going to continue to respond in the face of clear disrespect. If you want to see the evidence and research behind the statements I have made then I’m sure you can find it. IF you want to find it.

    If you want to participate in a scientific endeavour then it’s up to you to keep up with the research and literature. The scientific community owes you nothing and is not obligated to whiz by your venue with every new result or research paper which might cast light on your interests. You’re convinced you’re right and seemingly have stopped considering alternate explanations. Good luck with that approach. You might find yourself left far behind the current state of knowledge.

    And if you think there is no way you can be shown to be incorrect then you’re not ‘doing’ science. That’s a locked in ideological approach.

  60. 60

    .
    The projection is hilarious.

  61. 61

    .
    A person stands in front of an argument that relies on documented science and history that he cannot refute (but agrees to instead), and uses logic that he himself espouses and uses himself in the same situation, drawing the same conclusions.

    Yet, he denies the argument anyway.

    He calls it “not compelling.”

    When asked why he denies established science and reason — what specific contrary evidence he has— he has nothing to give.

    And when it is pointed out to him that he is denying fully documented science and reason because “it isn’t compelling” — yet he has no compelling counter evidence to offer in its place …

    He says “I didn’t say the evidence was compelling now”, and then turns and wants to lecture you about keeping up with the science.

    Good grief.

  62. 62
    JVL says:

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4284479/

    Spark-tube experiments and analysis of meteorite contents have led to the widespread notion that abiotic organic molecules were the first life components. However, there is a contradiction between the abundance of simple molecules, such as the amino acids glycine and alanine, observed in these studies, and the minimal functional complexity that even the least sophisticated living system should require. I will argue that although simple abiotic molecules must have primed proto-metabolic pathways, only Darwinian evolving systems could have generated life. This condition may have been initially fulfilled by both replicating RNAs and autocatalytic reaction chains, such as the reductive citric acid cycle. The interactions between nucleotides and biotic amino acids, which conferred new functionalities to the former, also resulted in the progressive stereochemical recognition of the latter by cognate anticodons. At this point only large enough amino acids would be recognized by the primordial RNA adaptors and could polymerize forming the first peptides. The gene duplication of RNA adaptors was a crucial event. By removing one of the anticodons from the acceptor stem the new RNA adaptor liberated itself from the stereochemical constraint and could be acylated by smaller amino acids. The emergence of messenger RNA and codon capture followed.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK6584/

    Does the genetic code assign similar codons to similar amino acids because of chemical interactions between them? Unlike adaptive explanations, which can only explain the relative positions of amino acids in the code, stereochemical explanations could tie codon assignments to absolute, verifiable rules. However, modern translation encodes amino acid sequences without direct codon/amino acid interaction. If there is a relationship between RNA sequences with intrinsic affinity for amino acids and the modern genetic code, we must therefore explain a historical transition in which direct interactions were abandoned. We review the literature and find no evidence that interactions between short sequences (mono-, di- or trinucleotides) and amino acids are strong or specific enough to originate genetic coding. Instead, interactions between amino acids and longer nucleic acid sequences appear to recapture some assignments of the modern code. For example, real codons are concentrated in newly selected amino acid binding sites to a greater extent than codons from similar, but randomized, codes. This implies that some initial coding assignments were made by interaction with macromolecular RNA-like molecules, and have survived. Thus, subsequent selection, such as selection to minimize coding errors, has not erased all primordial chemical relationships. Retention of initial stereochemical codon assignments for three of six amino acids (arginine, isoleucine, and tyrosine, but not glutamine, leucine or phenylalanine) is strongly supported.

    Combining data for the six amino acids, significant stereochemical relationships are of more than one type—codons and anticodons are each concentrated in some binding sites. Further work will be required to catalog the relationships between amino acids and binding site sequences, especially if, as now appears, more than one type of interaction has been transmitted to the modern code.

    https://iubmb.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/iub.146

    The genetic code is nearly universal, and the arrangement of the codons in the standard codon table is highly nonrandom. The three main concepts on the origin and evolution of the code are the stereochemical theory, according to which codon assignments are dictated by physicochemical affinity between amino acids and the cognate codons (anticodons); the coevolution theory, which posits that the code structure coevolved with amino acid biosynthesis pathways; and the error minimization theory under which selection to minimize the adverse effect of point mutations and translation errors was the principal factor of the code’s evolution. These theories are not mutually exclusive and are also compatible with the frozen accident hypothesis, that is, the notion that the standard code might have no special properties but was fixed simply because all extant life forms share a common ancestor, with subsequent changes to the code, mostly, precluded by the deleterious effect of codon reassignment. Mathematical analysis of the structure and possible evolutionary trajectories of the code shows that it is highly robust to translational misreading but there are numerous more robust codes, so the standard code potentially could evolve from a random code via a short sequence of codon series reassignments. Thus, much of the evolution that led to the standard code could be a combination of frozen accident with selection for error minimization although contributions from coevolution of the code with metabolic pathways and weak affinities between amino acids and nucleotide triplets cannot be ruled out. However, such scenarios for the code evolution are based on formal schemes whose relevance to the actual primordial evolution is uncertain. A real understanding of the code origin and evolution is likely to be attainable only in conjunction with a credible scenario for the evolution of the coding principle itself and the translation system. © 2008 IUBMB IUBMB Life, 61(2): 99–111, 2009

    This one is from 1983, so the idea is not even new: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/0022519383904319

    The origin of the genetic code may be attributed to a postulated prebiological stereochemistry in which amino acid dimers, the trans ?R,R?-diketopiperazines, interacted with prototype codon and anticodon nucleotide sequences. An intricately coupled stereochemistry is formulated which displays a binary logic for amino acid-codon recognition. It is shown that the diketopiperazine ring system can be inserted between any terminal pair of base paired nucleotides in a codon-anticodon structure with exact registration of complementary hydrogen bonding functional groups. This yields a codon-dimer-anticodon structure in which each amino acid residue is projected towards and interacts with a particular sequence of vicinal nucleotides on either codon or anticodon. The projection direction and the sequence of nucleotides encountered is a strongly coupled function of the choice of codon terminal nucleotide and the handedness of the amino acid. The reciprocal chemical nature of the complementary base pairs drives the selection of dimers containing quite dissimilar and chirally opposed amino acids. Application of the Stereochemical model to the in vivo system leads to a general correlation for amino acid-codon assignments. The genetic code is restated in terms of the dimers selected. The profound symmetry of the code is elucidated and this proves useful for correlative and predictive purposes.

    https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev-genet-120116-024713?journalCode=genet

    The standard genetic code (SGC) is virtually universal among extant life forms. Although many deviations from the universal code exist, particularly in organelles and prokaryotes with small genomes, they are limited in scope and obviously secondary. The universality of the code likely results from the combination of a frozen accident, i.e., the deleterious effect of codon reassignment in the SGC, and the inhibitory effect of changes in the code on horizontal gene transfer. The structure of the SGC is nonrandom and ensures high robustness of the code to mutational and translational errors. However, this error minimization is most likely a by-product of the primordial code expansion driven by the diversification of the repertoire of protein amino acids, rather than a direct result of selection. Phylogenetic analysis of translation system components, in particular aminoacyl–tRNA synthetases, shows that, at a stage of evolution when the translation system had already attained high fidelity, the correspondence between amino acids and cognate codons was determined by recognition of amino acids by RNA molecules, i.e., proto-tRNAs. We propose an experimentally testable scenario for the evolution of the code that combines recognition of amino acids by unique sites on proto-tRNAs (distinct from the anticodons), expansion of the code via proto-tRNA duplication, and frozen accident.

    https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/2020.02.20.958546v2.full

    A near-universal Standard Genetic Code (SGC) implies a single origin for Earthly life. To study this unique event, I compute paths to the SGC, comparing different histories. SGC-like coding tables emerge, using traditional evolutionary mechanisms – a superior evolutionary route can be identified.

    To objectively measure evolution, progress values from 0 (random coding) to 1 (SGC-like) are defined, measuring fractions of random-code-to-SGC distance. Progress types are spacing/distance/delta Polar Requirement, detecting space between identical assignments /mutational distance to the SGC/chemical order, respectively. The coding system was based on selected RNAs performing aminoacyl-RNA synthetase reactions. Acceptor RNAs exhibit SGC-like wobble; alternatively, non-wobbling triplets uniquely encode 20 amino acids/start/stop. Triplets acquire their 22 functions by stereochemistry, selection, coevolution, or randomly. Assignments also propagate to an assigned triplet’s neighborhood via single mutations, but can decay.

    SGC order is especially sensitive to disorder from random assignments. Futile evolutionary paths are plentiful due to the vast code universe. Evolution inevitably slows near coding completion. Coding likely avoided these difficulties, and two suitable pathways are compared in detail. In “late wobble”, a majority of non-wobble assignments are made before wobble is adopted. In “continuous wobble”, a uniquely advantageous early intermediate supplies the gateway to an ordered SGC. Revised coding table evolution (limited randomness, late wobble, concentration on amino acid encoding, chemically conservative coevolution with a simple elite) produces varied full codes with excellent joint progress values. A population of only 600 independent coding tables includes SGC-like members, and a Bayesian path to further refinement is available.

    The idea that the genetic code arose via stereochemical means is not even new, it is taken seriously and it is being examined and researched. It’s easy to find research papers addressing the issue. Maybe all those researchers are wasting their time and taxpayers money. Maybe. Or maybe it’s a viable scientific hypothesis with some evidence to back it up and thus it’s worth looking into further.

    I’m happy to let those researchers continue their work. I’m happy to keep an open mind until the answer is really clear one way or another. I’m not going to prejudge the eventual outcome.

  63. 63
    Bob O'H says:

    Jerry @ 9 –

    Second, Bob O’H identifies as a Darwinist.

    No I don’t.

    ba77 @ 13 –

    Of further note to Bob’s claim that Darwinists “have models initially developed a century ago” that can tell us exactly how eye color originated.

    I never claimed that.

    *sigh*

  64. 64
    bornagain77 says:

    Well Bob, if your theory can’t even explain how eye color originated,,,, do I really even need to finish that sentence?

  65. 65

    .
    JVL, which one of your cites is not speculative?

    What part of a “rate-independent medium, mediated by non-integrable elements constraints” (i.e. the actual measured physical description of the system) does it demonstrate?

    If they are all speculative, and none of them demonstrates the required system, or even provides a demonstrated pathway to the required effect, then on what specific grounds (i.e. reasoned details) do you consider them more “compelling” than the documented predictions, experimental confirmations, and measure physical analysis that are already recorded in the literature (which you cannot deny)?

    And can you please try to be specific about your reasoning this time? And please tell us: how does your answer remove the double-standard you insist on keeping in your reasoning.

  66. 66
    Viola Lee says:

    Off-topic, but related to my post on HGT: can someone tell me exactly what is meant by “Darwinist” here? Thanks.

  67. 67
    jerry says:

    what is meant by “Darwinist” here? Thanks.

    Someone who espouses the ideas of Darwin. Or today what is called the modern synthesis which has several iterations. Essentially anyone who espoused that the major mechanism for evolutionary change is natural selection operating on mutations.

    Since Darwin threw in the concept of universal common descent, that is also part of it.

    The term “modern synthesis” is out of favor with a lot of people but it essentially is what most understand by Darwinism.

    Some throw in atheism but a lot of religious subscribe to these ideas so it isn’t really part of it. However, atheists have to explain evolution so it has become the only game in town for most of them.

    There is always nuances but no major deviations from these ideas.

    I believe Darwin’s ideas were revolutionary but not for evolution to the origin of species. They are the basis of modern day genetics. For evolution they are a bust. They cannot explain the appearance of proteins.

  68. 68

    .
    I believe you folks are posting on the wrong thread. A system error I assume.

    ** On that note, my spell check system added the word “elements” to my post at #65. It was not intended to be there.

  69. 69
    Viola Lee says:

    OK. I probably have some questions about what Jerry wrote, but I won’t ask them here.

  70. 70
    jerry says:

    but I won’t ask them here.

    The term is in the OP. You will get lots of different opinions here.

  71. 71
    Steve Alten2 says:

    I would characterize Darwinism as natural selection acting on the variation of heritable traits. Darwin didn’t know anything about the gene or genetics. His theory requires two things.

    1) The heritability of traits (he didn’t even rule out the inheritance of acquired characteristics).

    2) A source of variation of heritable traits. The current belief is that mutations are the ultimate source.

  72. 72
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: JVL, which one of your cites is not speculative?

    There are all research results published in peer- reviewed journals. Why don’t you read them?

    What part of a “rate-independent medium, mediated by non-integrable elements constraints” (i.e. the actual measured physical description of the system) does it demonstrate?l

    The papers are examining and exploring the ways that stereochemical affinities might be responsible for the genetic ‘code’, or at least parts of it. That’s how science works, it takes a question or a piece of a bigger question and tries to answer it.

    If they are all speculative, and none of them demonstrates the required system, or even provides a demonstrated pathway to the required effect, then on what specific grounds (i.e. reasoned details) do you consider them more “compelling” than the documented predictions, experimental confirmations, and measure physical analysis that are already recorded in the literature (which you cannot deny)?

    I consider them worthy explorations into the limits and abilities of the actual physical systems involved. Biology doesn’t exist in the abstract or on paper; it’s best to examine its abilities and limits in the real world.

    And can you please try to be specific about your reasoning this time? And please tell us: how does your answer remove the double-standard you insist on keeping in your reasoning.

    I’ve explained my reasoning and why I don’t think I am ascribing to a double standard. I’ve got nothing else to add to my explanation so if you find it unsatisfactory we’ll just have to leave it.

  73. 73

    .

    UB: JVL, which one of your cites is not speculative?

    JVL: There are all research results published in peer- reviewed journals. Why don’t you read them?

    They are all purely speculative, and not one of them demonstrates experimental results connecting them to the required end result. They are speculation upon speculation. Is it actually your belief that there is an rate-dependent self-replicator out there in the literature, capturing even a portion of the necessary pathway to becoming a rate-independent replicator, but it is somehow unknown in places like here at UD — somehow it is completely off the radar in the grand debate over design vs materialism? Hello?

    The papers are examining and exploring the ways that stereochemical affinities might be responsible…

    Yes JVL, we are all quite aware of that. They are still searching for that possibility because none of its most convinced proponents knows if it is even possible. Does that simple concept — searching for something because you are neither in possession of it nor have you already found it — not make sense to you? Surely it does.

    So by definition, it is speculative. Now, with that fact in hand, let us put a little qualifier on it. Go back to those papers you cited and do a word search for the word “symbol”, and see how many authors mention it. Do a word search for the word “medium” or “interpretive constraint”. Do a search for the phrase “rate-independent”. Try it for the phrase “semantic closure”. I have been reading papers like those for years now. I can tell you that you are not going to find anything. ”But!” you say, those are specific subjects that can bediscussed using different language, so that demonstrates nothing. Well then, since you indicate that “biosemiosis” is now a mainstream concept, try it for the word “semiosis” or “semiotic”. Still nothing. Okay then, look them over and see where they are talking about those critical subjects using their own language. You still won’t find anything. The point is, they are not even talking about these things; that is, they are not talking about the required core physical conditions of an autonomous open-ended self-replicator. ”But!” you say again, these researchers are only interested in finding a single piece of a much larger puzzle, and so it still means nothing. Okay, you think an inventor will stumble upon his prize without considering what is required of it, okay fine. Go to the papers you cited, and look at the papers they cite. Look for the physical requirements of self-replication among them. You are still not gong to find it. The bottom line is that the critical physical requirements of autonomous self-replication are not even discussed among the world’s leading OoL researchers. Sydney Brenner, when talking about the heady days of DNA discoveries following von Neumann’s predictions, noted that even today’s biologists (decades after the confirmation of von Neumann) are suspect in their adaptation to the new paradigm. Pattee, slightly more direct, posed the question of why reductionist biologist are rarely heard discussing the physical requirements that lay before them. He answered his own question: “Because its hard”.

    So now lets ask a question, JVL. The physical conditions required to establish and bridge the “epistemic cut” (Von Neumann, Pattee), making a physical system capable of autonomous description-based self-replication (i.e. life, evolution) are very specific, entirely simultaneous, and completely unique among all other systems known to the physical sciences (except language of course). I wont cleverly ask you if those specific material conditions are somehow unimportant to OoL research; only a fool would answer that in any way other than the obvious. I simply want to point out that the cites you provide don’t even consider those specific conditions in their research, and are in fact, willfully unrelated to them. Likewise, I won’t ask “why” you think your cites are ignoring these critical physical requirements, because as you’ve already demonstrated, it is simply too easy for you to punt it all away with gratuitous platitudes about the “the way science works” or “keeping an open mind” or some other banal self-serving language.

    But I would like to know the answer to a question. It is actually an old question, posed across cultures around the world. I think this is so, because perhaps it captures some core element of truth about being a human. Now, you know that a fundamental scientific prediction was made about self-replication, and that this prediction was spectacularly confirmed by experiment. And you know (even though you would never admit it) that this prediction, its confirmation, along with the chain of understanding that followed it, including the physical description of the system and its critical requirements, are all on solid scientific footing and they form a completely sound inference to design in biology. Clearly you know all this; it is demonstrated in the way you dodge and weave to avoid it all (comment after comment after comment). My question in this: with all your clumsy defenses against the science and reason, are you actually trying to convince me, or yourself? By that I mean, when you come here, knowing what you know, yet still barking out requests for evidence, are you actually trying to convince people who accept the legitimacy of the science to ignore it, or are you just trying to get by with the lowly and unfortunate consequences of your worldview?

  74. 74
    Mung says:

    They are all purely speculative, and not one of them demonstrates experimental results connecting them to the required end result.

    So what. Since when does argument and evidence matter?

  75. 75

    .
    Good to see you, Mung. I hope all is well.

  76. 76
    Mung says:

    Good to see you, Mung. I hope all is well.

    Likewise my friend!
    We have mountains here, and northern climes, to explian snow and ice. LoL.

  77. 77

    .
    We are in the hill country here, and can’t seem to shake off the cool weather. But the lemon trees have bloomed, and so we are covered in hummingbirds.

  78. 78
    JVL says:

    Upright BiPed: But I would like to know the answer to a question. It is actually an old question, posed across cultures around the world. I think this is so, because perhaps it captures some core element of truth about being a human. Now, you know that a fundamental scientific prediction was made about self-replication, and that this prediction was spectacularly confirmed by experiment. And you know (even though you would never admit it) that this prediction, its confirmation, along with the chain of understanding that followed it, including the physical description of the system and its critical requirements, are all on solid scientific footing and they form a completely sound inference to design in biology. Clearly you know all this; it is demonstrated in the way you dodge and weave to avoid it all (comment after comment after comment). My question in this: with all your clumsy defenses against the science and reason, are you actually trying to convince me, or yourself? By that I mean, when you come here, knowing what you know, yet still barking out requests for evidence, are you actually trying to convince people who accept the legitimacy of the science to ignore it, or are you just trying to get by with the lowly and unfortunate consequences of your worldview?

    I am not ‘barking out requests for evidence’. I’m not trying to convince anyone of anything. I try and answer questions put to me honestly. Sometimes I ask questions and I expect to be answered honestly and courteously.

    I think we should just leave the topic because we’re not achieving anything. Clearly the people who are researching unguided development of the genetic system think it’s possible that it arose spontaneously. And it’s not just a few researchers who think that. I don’t know if they’ll ever figure it out but I’m happy that that work is going on. I’d love to have a plausible path elucidated in my lifetime but we’ll have to wait and see.

    If you think their work is a waste of time then perhaps you should tell them so and see what they say.

  79. 79
    ET says:

    JVL:

    Clearly the people who are researching unguided development of the genetic system think it’s possible that it arose spontaneously.

    They are HOPING. They don’t have any evidence for it. Their work is as much a waste of time as is those looking for how nature produced Stonehenge.

  80. 80
    Bob O'H says:

    ba77 @ 64 – again, that’s not what I wrote.

  81. 81

    .

    UB: But I would like to know the answer to a question. It is actually an old question, posed across cultures around the world. I think this is so, because it perhaps captures some core element of being a human. Now, you know that a fundamental scientific prediction was made about self-replication, and that this prediction was spectacularly confirmed by experiment. And you know (even though you would never admit it) that this prediction, its confirmation, along with the chain of understanding that followed it, including the physical description of the system and its critical requirements, are all on solid scientific footing and they form a completely sound inference to design in biology. Clearly you know all this; it is demonstrated in the way you dodge and weave to avoid it all (comment after comment after comment). My question in this: with all your clumsy defenses against science and reason, are you actually trying to convince me, or yourself? By that I mean, when you come here, knowing what you know, yet still barking out requests for evidence, are you actually trying to convince people who accept the legitimacy of the science to ignore it, or are you just trying to get by with the lowly consequences of your worldview?

    JVL: I am not ‘barking out requests for evidence’

    (just this week alone)

    Thread A: ”How about: no known intelligent designers about?

    Thread B: “I see no credible evidence of a designer around at . . . what time was it?

    Thread C: “No designer means no design. Propose to me a sensible suggestion of a designer

  82. 82

    .
    (Your words are recorded on the blog. You could have just been honest instead)

  83. 83
    JVL says:

    Upright Biped:

    Asking questions is not the same as barking out requests for evidence. You choose to interpret everything I say in a negative, confrontational sense.

    If you want to ask me a question in a collegial manner I will try and answer honestly. I can’t promise to answer in a way you find satisfying but I will try.

  84. 84

    .
    Do I have any questions for you? Well, let’s see.

    Months ago, you told us of your enthusiastic expectation that the design inference would be used successfully with SETI. You were asked what specific finding would be the criteria for that success, and you replied with the finding of encoded symbolic content (i.e. a universal correlate of intelligence). You were then reminding that this is the exact criteria used in the design inference in ID, which you deny at all costs, and you were asked “Why the double-standard?” in your reasoning.

    Since that time, you have used every play in the book to conceal the fact that your reasoning is fundamentally flawed, and that the ID inference is entirely valid by your own standards. Not only is it valid, the documented science and history behind it is not even controversial.

    You launched into a campaign of denial and obfuscation. This included your initial attempt to simply ignore the obvious contradiction. When that didn’t work you began dishonestly attacking me personally for pointing it out to you. You then graduated into falsely suggesting that research on the subject wasn’t what it was. In your continuous attempts to deflect the problem and maintain your double-standard, you even fronted the ridiculous notion that we might receive a signal containing encoded symbolic content from outer space and not actually infer the work of a previously unknown intelligence. Hell, you were even forced to admit that the molecular evidence against the ID inference wasn’t even compelling as it stands.

    So no, I don’t have any further questions for you right now.

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