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Non-ID biologist: Life “built by an engineer a million times smarter than” us …

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From Casey Luskin at Evolution News & Views:

Recently a friend sent me a link to a TEDx talk, “Digital biology and open science — the coming revolution,” which affirms that life’s “complex interacting molecular machines” reveal “molecular clockwork is real and pervasive” and appear to be “built by an engineer a million times smarter than” we are. The speaker is biologist and engineer Stephen Larson, who holds a PhD in neuroscience from University of California, San Diego, and is CEO of MetaCell, a systems biology research and consulting company that seeks to understand biology through computation.

Now I don’t think that Dr. Larson is pro-intelligent design, which makes his descriptions of biology all the more striking. In fact, after recounting some complex features of biology that appear designed, he immediately throws in the disclaimer that “what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years.” Nonetheless he admits that he finds the extremely “well organized” nature of life’s “technology” to be “unsettling.” He even says, “I’ve got to be honest with you, I kind of hate this.” More.

Note the equivocation implicit in: “what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years.” Does he mean by intelligence-free Darwinian evolution? What are the odds of that?

The difficulty here is that it is virtually impossible but we are ordered to accept it—by people who don’t even believe in magic. Which might at least have been an excuse. Yet he dare not doubt Darwin in public.

No wonder he hates it. Such great faith is required to be a Darwinist these days that one either ends up feeling like an idiot or in fact is one.

How long do readers think intelligent people will play along with this?

Here’s the TED:

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bornagain77 @3,
Much less does anyone have any evidence as to how a technology ‘built by an engineer a million times smarter than me’ could possibly have evolved by unguided material processes!
Nor does anyone have any evidence as to how an engineer capable of noticing that technology was 'built by an engineer a million times smarter than me' could have evolved by unguided material processes. ;o) BA77, thanks again for all of your phenomenal posts. harry
The disclaimer that “what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years" is also the platform on which "Computational Evo Biology" will base it's simulations. Of course. How accurate/true are "computational simulated expirements" and their results? Can't observe a multiverse? Hey Cosmologists - just computationally simulate "one". Based on inflation of course. Of course yikes. When the Science gets hard, simulate the "science". That's ok of course. But please don't take "Cargo Cult Science" to a higher level. ppolish
of related interest:
Extreme Information: Biocomplexity of Interlocking Genome Languages - Jeffrey P. Tomkins - 2015 Abstract: People most often think of the genome as containing only the embedded protein-coding information carried in the DNA of chromosomes. However, there are a variety of other codes and language systems active in the genome that are only now beginning to be deciphered. This paper will discuss the amazing internetworked biocomplexity of these language systems that interactively control the way the genome functions. The systems that will be discussed are gene structure complexities, RNA transcript splicing codes, the microRNA binding code, circular RNAs, dual-use codons, antisense transcripts, and epigenetic language systems. The now debunked myth of junk DNA will also be briefly addressed in light of the ENCODE project and new research in genome-wide COT-1 DNA functionality. The interworking and interdependence of these complex and dynamic language systems unequivocally points towards an omnipotent and wise Creator. Part 1 https://www.facebook.com/notes/creation-research-society/extreme-information-part-1/834640719917822 Part 2 https://www.facebook.com/notes/creation-research-society/extreme-information-part-2/837317202983507 Part 3 https://www.facebook.com/notes/creation-research-society/extreme-information-part-3/838364866212074 Part 4 https://www.facebook.com/notes/creation-research-society/extreme-information-part-4/839544269427467 Part 5 https://www.facebook.com/notes/creation-research-society/extreme-information-part-5/840095019372392
Life has been on earth for billions of years. There is no scientific explanation for how it got here. Heck, we still can't even answer the question "What is Life?". Over the course of time there have been changes to the forms of life on earth. Things changed. We call this evolution. How and why those changes occurred is still not clearly understood and is a field of considerable scientific inquiry and debate. (Unlike, for example, whether the earth is round or whether gravity exists.) We call the how and why things changed evolution too. We have theories about how and why things changed. We call these theories evolution too. We don't want people to get confused about evolution, you see. But Goddidn't do it, nor any Designer, nor any designer. I don't care what this guy says. Mung
'And exactly how does he, or anybody else on the face of God’s green earth, understand how unguided material processes can possibly build that jaw dropping level of complexity?' Aah, but you missed the operative phrase, 'of course', BA77. You see, that explains everything. So, we now have two magical explanations of atheist science's primordial fantasy: 'Random chance as Creator and Developer, and the 'course', as in, 'of course': ipso facto'. If they would only identify the 'facto' for us, but they like to keep their cards close to their chest. Axel
“what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years"
What he means is that life evolved on the planet in an unsupervised, a-telic manner. Of course, such a claim is far from demonstrable. Gawd, it gets tiresome. mike1962
Funny. if pressed he would deny he meant it that way. Yet if not pressed they admit the complexity of nature suggests a thinking complex being if one looked at it with open heart. Its obvious complexity is created by God. Dumb chance is too dumb. The smarter people get in figuring out how things work the more complex it gets and not less. Just as predicted if a creator made it. Not if bumps in the night of sticks and stones. Robert Byers
First the reality check:
"when I look through a microscope at a humble bacterium,,, (the sheer complexity) makes me feel that I've stumbled onto an alternate landscape of technology that's built by an engineer a million times smarter than me."
Then the cognitive dissonance that Darwinian thinking demands sets in,,,
“what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years.”
And exactly how does he, or anybody else on the face of God's green earth, understand how unguided material processes can possibly build that jaw dropping level of complexity? That is precisely the point of what we don't understand! Despite the millions of just so stories offered by neo-Darwinists, no one has any empirical evidence of a single gene or protein of a single molecular machine evolving by unguided material processes. Much less does anyone have any evidence as to how a technology 'built by an engineer a million times smarter than me' could possibly have evolved by unguided material processes! It is simply insane for this supposedly very intelligent person, who sees the breath taking complexity of biological life first hand, to stand up on a stage and pretend the Darwinian emperor has clothes on when the emperor is in fact butt-ass naked!
"Charles Darwin said (paraphrase), 'If anyone could find anything that could not be had through a number of slight, successive, modifications, my theory would absolutely break down.' Well that condition has been met time and time again. Basically every gene, every protein fold. There is nothing of significance that we can show that can be had in a gradualist way. It's a mirage. None of it happens that way. - Doug Axe PhD - Nothing In Molecular Biology Is Gradual - video https://vimeo.com/118128889 Estimating the prevalence of protein sequences adopting functional enzyme folds: Doug Axe: Excerpt: Starting with a weakly functional sequence carrying this signature, clusters of ten side-chains within the fold are replaced randomly, within the boundaries of the signature, and tested for function. The prevalence of low-level function in four such experiments indicates that roughly one in 10^64 signature-consistent sequences forms a working domain. Combined with the estimated prevalence of plausible hydropathic patterns (for any fold) and of relevant folds for particular functions, this implies the overall prevalence of sequences performing a specific function by any domain-sized fold may be as low as 1 in 10^77, adding to the body of evidence that functional folds require highly extraordinary sequences. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15321723 Waiting Longer for Two Mutations - Michael J. Behe Excerpt: Citing malaria literature sources (White 2004) I had noted that the de novo appearance of chloroquine resistance in Plasmodium falciparum was an event of probability of 1 in 10^20. I then wrote that ‘‘for humans to achieve a mutation like this by chance, we would have to wait 100 million times 10 million years’’ (Behe 2007) (because that is the extrapolated time that it would take to produce 10^20 humans). Durrett and Schmidt (2008, p. 1507) retort that my number ‘‘is 5 million times larger than the calculation we have just given’’ using their model (which nonetheless "using their model" gives a prohibitively long waiting time of 216 million years). Their criticism compares apples to oranges. My figure of 10^20 is an empirical statistic from the literature; it is not, as their calculation is, a theoretical estimate from a population genetics model. http://www.discovery.org/a/9461
Here are few more articles to go along with the "technology that's built by an engineer a million times smarter than me" quote:
Systems biology: Untangling the protein web - July 2009 Excerpt: Vidal thinks that technological improvements — especially in nanotechnology, to generate more data, and microscopy, to explore interaction inside cells, along with increased computer power — are required to push systems biology forward. "Combine all this and you can start to think that maybe some of the information flow can be captured," he says. But when it comes to figuring out the best way to explore information flow in cells, Tyers jokes that it is like comparing different degrees of infinity. "The interesting point coming out of all these studies is how complex these systems are — the different feedback loops and how they cross-regulate each other and adapt to perturbations are only just becoming apparent," he says. "The simple pathway models are a gross oversimplification of what is actually happening." http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v460/n7253/full/460415a.html ENCODE Scientists go deeper into DNA (Video report) (Junk No More) - Sept. 2012 http://bcove.me/26vjjl5a Quote from preceding video: “It's just been an incredible surprise for me. You say, ‘I bet it's going to be complicated', and then you are faced with it and you are like 'My God, that is mind blowing.'” Ewan Birney - senior scientist - ENCODE 2012 ENCODE: Encyclopedia Of DNA Elements - video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y3V2thsJ1Wc Quote from preceding video: "It's very hard to get over the density of information (in the genome),,, The data says its like a jungle of stuff out there. There are things we thought we understood and yet it is much, much, more complex. And then (there are) places of the genome we thought were completely silent and (yet) they're (now found to be) teeming with life, teeming with things going on. We still really don't understand that." Ewan Birney - senior scientist - ENCODE Learning from Bacteria about Social Networking (Information Processing) - video Excerpt: I will show illuminating movies of swarming intelligence of live bacteria in which they solve optimization problems for collective decision making that are beyond what we, human beings, can solve with our most powerful computers. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJpi8SnFXHs "Complexity Brake" Defies Evolution - August 2012 Excerpt: "This is bad news. Consider a neuronal synapse -- the presynaptic terminal has an estimated 1000 distinct proteins. Fully analyzing their possible interactions would take about 2000 years. Or consider the task of fully characterizing the visual cortex of the mouse -- about 2 million neurons. Under the extreme assumption that the neurons in these systems can all interact with each other, analyzing the various combinations will take about 10 million years..., even though it is assumed that the underlying technology speeds up by an order of magnitude each year.",,, Even with shortcuts like averaging, "any possible technological advance is overwhelmed by the relentless growth of interactions among all components of the system," to read more go here: http://www.evolutionnews.org/2012/08/complexity_brak062961.html The Half-Truths of Materialist Evolution - DONALD DeMARCO - 02/06/2015 Excerpt: Scientists in the field of brain research now inform us that a single human brain contains more molecular-scale switches than all the computers, routers and Internet connections on the entire planet! According to Stephen Smith, a professor of molecular and cellular physiology at the Stanford University School of Medicine, the brain’s complexity is staggering, beyond anything his team of researchers had ever imagined, almost to the point of being beyond belief. In the cerebral cortex alone, each neuron has between 1,000 to 10,000 synapses that result, roughly, in a total of 125 trillion synapses, which is about how many stars fill 1,500 Milky Way galaxies! A single synapse may contain 1,000 molecular-scale switches. A synapse, simply stated, is the place where a nerve impulse passes from one nerve cell to another. Phantasmagorical as this level of unified complexity is, it places us merely at the doorway of the brain’s even deeper mind-boggling organization. Glial cells in the brain assist in neuron speed. These cells outnumber neurons 10 times over, with 860 billion cells. All of this activity is monitored by microglia cells that not only clean up damaged cells but also prune dendrites, forming part of the learning process. The cortex alone contains 100,000 miles of myelin-covered, insulated nerve fibers. The process of mapping the brain would indeed be time-consuming. It would entail identifying every synaptic neuron. If it took a mere second to identify each neuron, it would require four billion years to complete the project. http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/the-half-truths-of-materialist-evolution/
It could also be Larson is an enemy agent conducting a subtle attack from the inside without raising too much adverse suspicion. Mapou
Note the equivocation implicit in: “what we understand of course is that life evolved on the planet over billions of years.”
He has to say this, otherwise he would never be invited back to TED. He has to kiss the ring on the hand that puts money on the table even if it makes him look like a coward and a butt kisser, which Larson obviously is. Integrity and guts are dead in science. Mapou

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