Intelligent Design

Sorry Tin, Nature Does Not Do CSI.

Spread the love

tintinnid attempts to undermine the design inference by noting:

Just because something can be made by man does not mean that all occurrences in nature must have an intelligent origin.

Agreed. You have been one of our most vocal critics in recent weeks. But that you would write this statement indicates you have a seriously flawed understanding of the ID project. I recommend that before you spend further hours on this website criticizing ID, that perhaps you might try to understand it first. Then, when you go to criticize it, you will be actually criticizing ID, and not some distorted caricature of ID you’ve made up.

You see, Tin, it does no good to criticize a distorted caricature of ID. Say you were in a gunfight and opposing you down the street were a life-sized cardboard image of the bad guy and the actual bad guy. Which one would you shoot at? I hope you see my point. Go study ID Tin until you actually understand it. Then, if after your studies you still want to criticize it, by all means do so. But if you continue to shoot at the cardboard image, don’t be surprised when you look down and find your arguments are lying on the ground bleeding. For example:

Humans can make diamonds, but not all diamonds are of intelligent origin.

This statement is certainly true as far as it goes but it misses the point. Here are pictures of two diamonds. One is “rough,” i.e., it was shaped by natural forces. The other one was is “finished,” i.e., it was shaped by intelligent forces. Can you tell which is which?

d78824bad5e0e1fbbf1ba1048fed847e

finished

Just because DNA carries information does not mean that it must be of intelligent origin.

You are certainly correct that natural forces (chance/law) can create tiny strings of information. For example, the famous Shakespeare monkey simulator after simulating monkeys typing 10^35 pages, got this string (the longest it ever got) from Act I, Scene I of Timon of Athens:

Poet. Good day Sir

For comparison purposes, here are the first few lines from that scence.

Poet. Good day, sir.
Painter. I am glad you’re well.
Poet. I have not seen you long: how goes the world?
Painter. It wears, sir, as it grows.
Poet. Ay, that’s well known:
But what particular rarity? what strange,
Which manifold record not matches? See,
Magic of bounty! all these spirits thy power
Hath conjured to attend. I know the merchant.
Painter. I know them both; th’ other’s a jeweller.

Take a good look at this number: 10^35. It is unimaginably huge. Yet in all of those pages a blind search was able to come up with only a snippet of Shakespeare.

Now, here’s my question for you. Is the DNA code more like the snippet within the reach of a blind search or is it more like the complete works of Shakespeare?

117 Replies to “Sorry Tin, Nature Does Not Do CSI.

  1. 1
    tintinnid says:

    Bar, you are committing a common error with regard to understanding of evolution. You are looking at the end product and trying to back calculate the probability of this occurring. And you would be correct in doing this if evolution had an ultimate design in mind, which it doesn’t.

    You say that it took 10^35 pages before it came up with the first line, from the first act, from the first Scene of Timon of Athens. I am not familiar with this simulation but I will take your word for it. But you did not mention how many pages were produced before a string of characters were produced that could be discerned as an English phrase of similar length. I don’t know the answer but I am willing to bet that it is far fewer than 10^35.

  2. 2
    Joe says:

    LoL! The common error is thinking that evolutionism is science and has something to offer.

    Again tintinnid, without testable models or anything of the sort, probabilities are all we have. And guess what? It is up to evolutionists to provide them and yet they have failed.

    That evolutionism doesn’t have any result in mind means it is a probabilistic process. So where are the probabilities already?

  3. 3
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tin, you did not answer either of my questions.

  4. 4

    ID = proposing and employing methodologies for actually doing the math and attempting to find out if natural law + chance is capable of generating new, functional proteins.

    Darwinism = blindly assuming that natural law + chance can and did generate all sets of functional proteins because the alternative is ideologically intolerable, and predicating virtually all of their evolutionary storytelling on that baseless assumption.

    Of course Darwinists stymie and stall and deny and dismiss and obfuscate any real debate about the probability, because deep down they know what is so patently obvious; natural law & chance cannot account for the construction of the CSI necessary for a self-replicating cell or entirely novel, functional macroevolutionary body plans.

    This is why – eventually – they must bow at the altar of multiverse scenarios – not because the multiverse scenario actually helps their cause, but rather because the multiverse grants them (at least in their mind) plausible deniability from the advancing evidence of design.

  5. 5
    Heartlander says:

    DNA has the following:

    1. Functional Information
    2. Encoder
    3. Error Correction
    4. Decoder

    How could such a system form randomly, without any intelligence, and totally unguided? What would come first – the encoder, error correction, or the decoder? How and where did the functional information originate?

    FN: DNA Stores Data More Efficiently than Anything We’ve Created

  6. 6
    Thorton says:

    To recap:

    The ID community has declared the molecular configuration of DNA to contain the hopelessly vague metric “CSI”. The ID community then makes the unsupported assertion that only intelligence can produce “CSI” so therefore DNA is designed. You couldn’t make a more circular argument if you tried.

    Here’s a counterexample:

    I claim DNA contains “grabbldyfrantz”. I assert that only natural processes can produce “grabbldyfrantz”. Therefore DNA arose from a natural process.

    There’s a reason the scientific community doesn’t take ID’s hand-waving seriously.

  7. 7
    Joe says:

    Barry, You didn’t really expect tintinnid to respond to your questions. For that you would need to get “Lily” the Verizon store sales person.

  8. 8
    Tamara Knight says:

    First Barry, as a meaningful evolutionary analogy, the momkeys would not be required to type the complete works, but to type random ammendments to some of the “best” of their previous attempts.

    Second, what do you mean by “The DNA code”? The stucture of a self replicating double helix, or the detail of a human genome. If the latter, it is not like the complete works of Shakespeare. There are 7 billion versions of if functioning today, and more ten times that have worked in the past. That alone reduces the odds by eleven orders of magnitude.

  9. 9
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tamara Knight

    First Barry, as a meaningful evolutionary analogy, the momkeys would not be required to type the complete works, but to type random ammendments to some of the “best” of their previous attempts.

    Tamara, we are not talking about evolution here. We are talking about the hopelessness of the materialist OOL project. I assume by “amendments to best previous attempts” you are referring to the selection process of natural selection. Sorry. You don’t get natural selection until you get something meaningful in the first place. The monkey experiment shows that you don’t get anything meaningful after 10^35 pages of tries.

    You have the ultimate chicken and egg problem. Or maybe I should call it an Ostrich and egg problem, because the typical Darwinist response is to stick their head in the sand and ignore the problem.

    Second, what do you mean by “The DNA code”?

    If you don’t know what the phrase “DNA Code” means, perhaps you should go study up before you attempt to debate this issue. Here’s a good place to start (ht to Heartlander): http://www.nature.com/scitable.....on-6523228

  10. 10
    Joe says:

    thorton:

    The ID community has declared the molecular configuration of DNA to contain the hopelessly vague metric “CSI”.

    That is incorrect. Crick is the one who discussed biological information and ID is fine by that usage.

    That is your whole problem, Timmah, you have absolutely no clue what you are talking about.

    The ID community then makes the unsupported assertion that only intelligence can produce “CSI” so therefore DNA is designed.

    Also incorrect. You have had plenty of time to show us that blind and undirected processes were sufficient and you have been a total failure. Now it seems you want to blame us for you failures.

    Pathetic

  11. 11
    tjguy says:

    Tin says:

    Just because something can be made by man does not mean that all occurrences in nature must have an intelligent origin.

    As Barry says, sure, that is a good point. But likewise, it doesn’t mean that it does NOT have an intelligent origin in nature either.

    And another huge difference between making diamonds and making DNA code is that we basically understand how diamonds are made. There is little dispute about this. The natural processes are fairly well understood and in fact, have been tested. And we actually copy the natural processes to make the diamonds which shows that those processes could actually make diamonds. We cannot verify that any particular diamond was actually created by those processes because we didn’t see it and we cannot recreate those conditions in the ground, but based on our knowledge and experimentation, we can fairly well justified to assume they were created by those processes.

    Yes, you claim to understand the natural processes by which life came into existence, complete with machines, overlapping codes, information processing systems, proteins, enzymes, software, and volumes of information.

    What we cannot do is to actually copy those processes and and test them to see if they can actually do what you claim.
    We cannot verify the claim or really even test it. I believe too that we have good reasons not to question your claims as well. Anyway, in the end, it remains in the realm of belief because you cannot show by experiment even that it could possibly have happened like you claim, let alone that it actually did happen like you claim.

    When dealing with unrepeatable, unverifiable, and unobservable history, we are both limited. We can see what is true now. At this point in time, we know of no process actually capable of producing the CSI we see in life, at least no process that can actually be verified.

    We can show through experiments that your claims are highly unlikely, but if you still choose to stand true to the god of Chance, there is nothing we can do about that. You must determine your own beliefs and we must determine our own beliefs.

    I just can’t muster up enough faith to believe that blind Chance is capable of producing what we see in life. The evidence for design is just too great to dismiss in my eyes. You are welcome to disagree with me/us and believe whatever you want, but don’t call it science because at this point, it is just belief – at best hypothesis – which we too have. But really, even the hypothesis you have is not testable so it is legitimate to question whether or not it can truly be called a scientific hypothesis as opposed to a belief.

  12. 12
    Barry Arrington says:

    Welcome to UD Thorton.

    The ID community has declared the molecular configuration of DNA to contain the hopelessly vague metric “CSI”.

    Buzzzz (that was the sound of the buzzer going off when a Darwinian makes a claim that is not only spectacularly wrong, but easily demonstrated to be so).

    The ID community did not come up with “CSI.” Here is materialist Leslie Orgel from 1973:

    living organisms are distinguished by their specified complexity.

    Here’s a hint Thorton. Try to do just a smidgen of basic research before you make a claim like that. You will find that you don’t make yourself look like a fool quite as often.

    The ID community then makes the unsupported assertion that only intelligence can produce “CSI” so therefore DNA is designed.

    And just as soon as you show us an example – FOR GOD’S SAKE THORTON WE WILL GO AWAY IF YOU WILL GIVE US EVEN ONE EXAMPLE – of natural forces creating Orgel’s CSI, we will back off on that claim. [question begging not allowed]

    BTW, do you care to take a stab at either of the questions that Tin dodged from the OP?

    You couldn’t make a more circular argument if you tried.

    You don’t seem to understand what a “circular argument” is.

    Here’s a counterexample:
    I claim DNA contains “grabbldyfrantz”. I assert that only natural processes can produce “grabbldyfrantz”. Therefore DNA arose from a natural process.

    Fish in a barrel. Really? That’s the best you’ve got? Show us how “grabbldyfrantz” is analogous to a staggeringly complex code that contains instructions for manufacturing proteins. Oh wait. You can’t? Fail.

    There’s a reason the scientific community doesn’t take ID’s hand-waving seriously.

    Yes, there is a lot of hand waving that goes on in the origins debate. Consider your “grabbldyfrantz” fail for example.

  13. 13
    tintinnid says:

    Bar: Tin, you did not answer either of my questions.

    I didn’t think that I needed to answer your question because it is based on a faulty premise. The analogy you used (Shakespeare) is not how evolution works. Now, please answer my question (yes, I know it was not a specific question, but please humour me). How many pages would it take before any English phrase of similar length would be produced? Even though this analogy is poor, it is much closer to how evolution works than yours is.

  14. 14
    mahuna says:

    “Bar, you are committing a common error with regard to understanding of evolution. You are looking at the end product and trying to back calculate the probability of this occurring.”

    Um, why is this a “common error”? Darwinism says that all existing life came about by “descent with modification”, that the modifications are random mutations, and that only the “best” of the random mutations survive to reproduce through the mechanism of “survival of the fittest”. So Darwinism is pre-eminently about Probabilities of specific known sequences of genes mutating to get from Species X to Species Y. And so the simplest way to determine the string of changes needed to get from X to Y is to start with Y and work backwards to X. A number of these changes are very hard, such as having a Y that can drink saltwater and a proposed X that cannot.

    What ID theorists remark upon is that in every case where an attempt has been made to map out a sequence of intermediate random changes between, say, a bear and a whale, the number of changes turns out to be huge (I think Berlinski says he gave up when he hit 50,000) and the time estimated for those changes to occur randomly and produce viable offspring (since the common medical term for a gene mutation is “birth defect”) is many orders of magnitude greater than the known time between any proposed common ancestor and the oldest known fossils for the new creature.

    In fact, several specialized animals (e.g., bats) appear in the fossil record so fully “evolved” that they are identical to their modern descendants. The RANDOM appearance of not merely a new species but a new Order with no known ancestors is so highly improbable that it can be considered “mathematically impossible”.

    So, Darwinism does not appear to offer a reasonable theory of how life diversified and also cannot off a reasonable theory for The Origin of Life. Darwin himself of course accepted the Biblical explanation that Jehovah created the “started set” of lifeforms. And the theory then proposes that Darwinian Evolution then used methods Darwin himself could not explain to produce the diversity we see today.

    ID arose as a competing theory in the late 20th century as biochemists came to understand the very lowest and simplest properties of cells and concluded that Darwinism could never explain what we now know to be true about biological systems. The Theory of Intelligent Design can of course be refuted by demonstrating (even on paper) that Darwinism or some new theory can better and more simply explain the origin and diversity of life on Earth.

    But the proponents of ID have been waiting for 20 years for even the simplest proof for an alternate theory, and no such proof has ever been produced

  15. 15
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tin: “I didn’t think that I needed to answer your question”

    You’ve dodged the questions and now you’ve attempted to justify your dodge. Fail.

    Tin, you are a coward.

  16. 16
    Barry Arrington says:

    mahuna,

    But the proponents of ID have been waiting for 20 years for even the simplest proof for an alternate theory, and no such proof has ever been produced

    Interesting that you should put it that way. See my “No Bomb After 10 Years” post that I just now put up.

  17. 17
    Heartlander says:

    The more we learn about DNA the more it is described as a language, software, instructions, or even a literary novel. How would that apply to Darwinian evolution? Well, to paraphrase David Berlinski’s story – On the Derivation of Ulysses from Don Quixote :

    Imagine that one novel “the Quixote” is the first and only novel in all creation (which is analogous to the first cell). Blind men copy this novel by hand over and over – during the transcription process, errors are made which just by chance create entirely new novels – such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. In time, the printing press is developed and mass copies are created of course with more errors. The errors beget new novels that are inadvertently being created now in new languages. Ultimately, all known works of literature from Ulysses to Tolstoy’s The Death of Ivan Ilyich are accidently created from copies of the one book – the Quixote.

    There you have it – the origin of man in a nutshell. Of course, everyone knows that a novel is just an entertaining work of fiction ; )

  18. 18
    Joe says:

    tintinnid:

    The analogy you used (Shakespeare) is not how evolution works.

    Mysterious ways- your evolution sounds like God.

  19. 19
    tintinnid says:

    Mahuna: So Darwinism is pre-eminently about Probabilities of specific known sequences of genes mutating to get from Species X to Species Y.

    This is the same error that Bar made. Using probabilities the way that you and Barry are is appropriate if species Y (or a Shakespeare sonnet) is the goal. But there are no predetermined goals, no destiny.

    To illustrate. What is the probability that you as a unique individual exists? You obviously exist so the answer is one. But, if we step back in time one generation, what is the probability that an individual identical to you will exist On October 22, 2014? To calculate this you would have to take into account the probability that your parents will meet and hook up, and the probability that the one specific ovum out of 400,000 from your mother would be fertilized by the one specific sperm out of hundreds of million from your father. The probability, therefore, would be extremely small. Step back in time a few more generations and the probability that you will exist will be vanishingly small, effectively zero. Therefore, based on the same logic that Barry has used (Shakespeare writing monkeys), you don’t exist. I regret having to inform you of this.

    This conclusion is obviously absurd. As is Barry’s analogy to monkeys and Shakespeare.

  20. 20
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tin, when you continue to comment on a thread after your cowardice has been exposed, it only makes things worse for you.

    Look, one of two things is true:

    1. You are unable to answer the questions.
    2. You are unwilling to answer the questions.

    You don’t come out looking good either way.

  21. 21
    tintinnid says:

    Bar: Tin, you are a coward.

    Since you refused to answer my question, which is relevant, I guess that we are a couple of cowards.

  22. 22
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tin @ 21. Fail.

    Here we have DDD #2: The Turnabout Tactic.

    I was actually waiting for you to pull this stunt. You don’t disappoint. Now, here’s another question. How is my refusal to answer your question after you’ve demonstrated you are unwilling to engage in a reasoned discourse different from your cowardly refusal to answer my questions in the first place?

    More advice: When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

  23. 23
    Tamara Knight says:

    @Barry 9

    I’m reasonably familiar with the operation of DNA, but I read that link when I have a moment. But I was asking exactly what you meant by “The DNA code” in you question to tintinid.

    CSI threw me though though, my first thought was that your OP was going to be about forensics! I didn’t pick up that you were discussing abiogenesis, but if so, why bring up DNA at all. I don’t think I have ever seen it suggested that the first self-replicators had DNA or even RNA. That would require Intelligent Design.

  24. 24
    tintinnid says:

    OK Barry, if you insist. The cut diamond is designed but the raw diamond is not. But can you distinguish between an uncut natural diamond and an uncut manufactured (designed) diamond?

    Since your second question is based on a flawed premise, which I explained in great detail with no attempt by you to rebut, there is no point in answering it. However, if you would like to explain why your analogy is relevant, I am all ears.

  25. 25
    Barry Arrington says:

    Still refusing to answer the second (more important) question?

    I will tell you why you are refusing to answer that question. You do not have the courage to contemplate where a truthful answer to that question will lead. Coward.

  26. 26
    kairosfocus says:

    H’mm:

    This, from Thorton at 6, seems to be a capital example of DDD #8:

    The ID community has declared the molecular configuration of DNA to contain the hopelessly vague metric “CSI”. The ID community then makes the unsupported assertion that only intelligence can produce “CSI” so therefore DNA is designed. You couldn’t make a more circular argument if you tried.

    Complex, specified information that in this case functions in DNA based on expressing a code and algorithms for protein assembly is “hopelessly vague”?

    Let’s recall what Crick wrote to his son Michael, March 19, 1953 on what DNA was:

    “Now we believe that the DNA is a code. That is, the order of bases (the letters) makes one gene different from another gene (just as one page of print is different from another)”

    How do we make sense of this comment post as opposed to another, or gibberish produced by at random typing? Or the like?

    The specific, well-matched functionally specific arrangement of letters in a string data structure, which is just how DNA strings work to produce proteins with the aid of Ribosomes etc.

    DDD #8 sums up the particular form of selective hyperskepticism at work here: refusing to acknowledge the reality of FSCO/I and its reliably known, characteristic cause . . . functionally specific, complex organisation and associated information.

    As in the common sort of thing we encounter in computer files, in text in books, in computer programs and more, and extending to organisation [which can be reduced to strings with aid of AutoCAD etc] we have information-rich functionally specific organisation too.

    But, but but we can tangle the discussion Dembski made into rhetorical pretzels and make it look like hopeless confusion.

    Yes, that is a well known tactic in less than charitable or less than honest debate.

    To make sense of Dembski’s metric for practical purposes simply carry the log reduction exercise and as DDD #8 links, you can easily see that it is about an info beyond a threshold metric, which three years ago was reduced to:

    Chi_500 = I*S – 500, bits beyond the solar system threshold.

    I being an info metric, S a dummy variable defaulting 0 –> chance is adequate explanation, and on being set based on objective warrant for functional specificity says you have 500 bits or more to go before Chi_500 is positive. If positive, you are beyond a needle in haystack threshold on steroids for our solar system, use 1,000 bits for the observed cosmos.

    The point being, 500 – 1,000+ bits of FSCO/I cannot reasonably be accounted for by blind chance and/or mechanical necessity, only design is routinely observed as relevant cause.

    On trillions of cases in point.

    For just one instance consider the Internet.

    Likewise, go through a library.

    Look at cars, buildings and many other things manifesting FSCO/I where we directly know the cause.

    Try a beaver dam.

    In every case, the cause is design, and the required needle in haystack search in a config space of 3.27*10^150 possibilities, where the limited number of possible observations of 10^57 sol system atoms each observing trays of 500 coins 10^14 times every s, show us why this is a needle in haystack challenge. The ratio of sampling possibilities to the config space is as one straw to a cubical haystack as thick as our galaxy at its central bulge. A blind search of that relative scope for such a stack superposed on our galactic neighbourhood will with all but certainty come up, straw.

    Where the first issue we re looking at is the FSCO/I in the living cell, with a genome starting out at initial level as 100 – 1,000 kbits. Not 500 – 1,000. Doubling in scope for every additional bit.

    As for novel body plans, we are looking at just on tgenome 10 – 100+ mn bits, with ev ery good reason to understand that the requirement for many specifically arranged components to achieve function confines us to isolated islands of function in the space of possible configs, so the real challenge is not hill climbing within an island, but finding the shore of an island. If you doubt me, simply reflect on isolation of thousands of protein fold domains.

    And to substitute hill climbing for island finding is a strawman caricature of the issue.

    In short the body plan origin macro evolutionary challenge is by no means so simple as has often been extrapolated from finch beaks and whatnot.

    But, but but we can tangle all of that up in pretzels of confusion too.

    So what, one can do the same with a lot of pretty well established mathematics or science or phil etc.Start with trying to explain what sqrt -1 is and what it does in complex frequency domain analysis for one.

    Time for fresh thinking.

    KF

  27. 27
    tintinnid says:

    Still refusing to answer the second (more important) question?

    Barry, what about false premise don’t you understand? Here, this should help:

    Premise: a previous statement or proposition from which another is inferred or follows as a conclusion

    Maybe the word is too difficult for you. Maybe this term is easier for you to understand:

    Loaded Question: a question with a false or questionable presupposition, and it is “loaded” with that presumption.

    You are trying to get me to say that the words of shakespeare are more like DNA than the snippet is. But since you are making the false inference that evolution functions in a way analogous to your literary monkey, the question itself is irrelevant.

    It would be like me asking you if you were still beating your wife, and only accepting yes or no as an answer. [and just to be clear, I am not trying to suggest that Barry beats his wife. I don’t even know if he is married].

  28. 28
    Barry Arrington says:

    Answer the question Tin. Is DNA complex like the excerpt from Timon of Athens or is it simple like the snippit from the monkey simulation?

    You know that after you have answered the question (we all know what the answer is after all), I will demonstrate how the premise of the question is not faulty and destroy your blind faith.

    You cannot contemplate having your faith destroyed. You are afraid. That is why you refuse to answer. Coward.

  29. 29
    ciphertext says:

    I don’t know about a flawed premise. My reading of Barry’s question boils down to 1) is the occurrence of DNA as probable as a single line of a Shakespearean Play? or 2) is the occurrence of DNA as probable as a whole Shakespearean Play?

    What is the false presupposition? That a specific DNA molecule exists?

  30. 30
    Thorton says:

    Barry, would you or another ID proponent please calculate the CSI in the raw and cut diamonds you posted in the OP? Please show your work. I’d like to see how the CSI values indicate the cut diamond was designed while the raw diamond wasn’t.

    Thanks in advance!

  31. 31
    tintinnid says:

    You cannot contemplate having your faith destroyed. You are afraid. That is why you refuse to answer. Coward.

    Rather than debate honestly and openly, why do you rely on loaded questions, insults and declaring that one silly Darwinian debating device or another has been used? If you will pardon the ad hominem (and loaded question, by the way), were you always the last kid picked for the team? But I am sure that if you put some effort into it, you can improve your demeanour.

    If you can’t explain why your Shakespeare monkeys and 10^35 pages is not as obviously absurd as my example at 19, there is no shame in admitting it. Someone once said that a man who can admit his errors, and take ownership of them, is a stand up guy.

  32. 32
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tin @ 31. You’ve been downgraded from “coward” to “pathetic sniveling coward.” We’re done.

  33. 33
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thorton, do you care to take a crack at the question Tin is too cowardly to answer?

  34. 34
    Thorton says:

    Barry, I didn’t see your CSI calculations for the two diamonds. Would you please repost them? Thanks!

  35. 35
    Barry Arrington says:

    ciphertext @ 29. Of course you are correct. And the obvious answer to that question is what Tin cannot bear to contemplate. Indeed, he is willing to make himself out to be a pathetic sniveling coward rather than answer it and face the prospect of having his faith commitments crushed. Sad.

  36. 36
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thorton, your attempt at DDD # 15 is duly noted. Are you a coward too? Let’s find out. Are you willing to answer the question Tin was too afraid to answer.

  37. 37
    kairosfocus says:

    Thorton,

    While I won’t actually calculate the FSCO/I content of the brilliant cut diamond shown, I will note that one can specify such a shape using AutoCAD, and that the resulting file size is a reasonable indicator. (And take that as a good indicator of why discussion on strings is WLOG.)

    The degree of complexity linked to the “sparkle” function (and hoped for hearts and arrows effect) can be understood from this description at Wikipedia as a handy reference:

    A brilliant is a diamond or other gemstone, cut in a particular form with numerous facets so as to have exceptional brilliance. The shape resembles that of a cone and provides maximized light return through the top of the diamond. . . . . The original round brilliant-cut was developed by Marcel Tolkowsky in 1919. The modern round brilliant consists of 58 facets (or 57 if the culet is excluded), ordinarily today cut in two pyramids placed base to base: 33 on the crown (the top half above the middle or girdle of the stone), truncated comparatively near its base by the table, and 25 on the pavilion (the lower half below the girdle), which has only the apex cut off to form the culet, around which 8 extra facets are sometimes added. In recent decades, most girdles are faceted. Many girdles have 32, 64, 80, or 96 facets; these facets are not counted in the total. While the facet count is standard, the actual proportions (crown height and angle, pavilion depth, etc.) are not universally agreed upon. One[who?] may speak of the American cut or the Scandinavian standard (Scan. D.N.), to give but two examples . . . . Optimal facet placement is the key to brilliance and more important than facet patterning.

    The degree of precision required to produce the relevant optical surfaces and co-ordinated facets in 3-d space easily exceeds 500 – 1,000 bits, or 72 – 143 ASCII characters. Just the summary above shows why. The existence of functionally tied specificity is obvious, as the highlights indicate. Indeed, I have no doubt evolutionary computing can be used to find various peaks in the Brilliant island of function, but also no doubt that to hit on a brilliant cut diamond by blind chance and mechanical necessity on the gamut of our solar system would be an empirically hopeless task.

    Notice, we even have the name of the inventor and the date.

    So, even without exact calculation the Chi_500 expression easily tells us that a brilliant cut diamond exhibits FSCO/I beyond a threshold that implicates design. As expected. And as, frankly, was blatantly obvious from the outset.

    The raw diamond, on the other hand is in effect a warped, malformed octahedron, the ideal diamond crystalline structure.

    The octahedral pattern is shaped by mechanical necessity and is of low contingency. The warping from that shape, is by a blend of chance and necessity, resulting in high contingency and complexity, but that is not functionally specific. The Chi_500 expression would lock at – 500 bits. That is, to get to FSCO/I characteristic of design, we have five hundred bits of functionally specific complex organisation to go.

    None of this is particularly difficult to understand relative to say A Level Math, Physics, Chemistry or Biology or the first year 4-year college substantial equivalent.

    KF

  38. 38
    Barry Arrington says:

    KF

    None of this is particularly difficult to understand

    Of course it isn’t KF. Yet Thorton’s entire blind, irrational faith-based worldview absolutely depends on pretending he can’t understand it. Prediction: Thorton will go on pretending he does not understand it.

  39. 39
  40. 40
    Barry Arrington says:

    Thanks KF. Sent ’em packin’ as usual.

  41. 41
    Thorton says:

    Barry @36

    Are you willing to answer the question Tin was too afraid to answer.

    You mean this question?

    Is the DNA code more like the snippet within the reach of a blind search or is it more like the complete works of Shakespeare?

    Sure. Since it’s a loaded question used as a cheap rhetorical device the correct answer is neither.

    One of the favorite and rather dishonest tactics of ID proponents is to equivocate over the different definitions of code. Human languages like English are intelligently designed codes where arbitrary symbols are used as abstractions to pass meanings. The sender and receiver have to agree beforehand on the arbitrary symbols and the abstractions. However, code can also mean merely any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs. Such processes don’t use arbitrary symbols or abstractions. They don’t pass meaning, don’t require agreement between a sender and receiver. When scientists speak of the DNA code they are using the second definition, not the first.

    To further muddy the waters humans have created a symbolic code using the letters A, C, G, T, U to represent and describe DNA bases involved in the DNA to amino acid chemical reaction. The descriptive human code is also not the physical mapping of the actual chemical processes.

    IDers either through ignorance or duplicity claim the DNA code is the first “symbolic abstraction” definition that requires an intelligent sender and receiver. It is not. Science has always been very clear on the difference which is one of many reasons ID’s blustering rhetoric about the DNA code gets zero traction in the scientific community.

    I note with some amusement no one could come up with CSI values for the two diamonds. What a surprise.

  42. 42
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Barry: “Thanks KF. Sent ‘em packin’ as usual.”

    The same way that you sent me packing?

  43. 43
    Mung says:

    I don’t think Barry has yet posted an OP that provides a proper category for Thorton’s posts.

  44. 44
    rich says:

    And we’re back to the weasel wars, I guess. Quasi-semi latching weasel :p

  45. 45
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Mung: “I don’t think Barry has yet posted an OP that provides a proper category for Thorton’s posts.”

    Hi Mung. I assume that you are referring to the lame DDDs. Is that the ID approach? Whenever you run into an argument that you are having a hard time countering, declare it a DDD and justify not responding to it? Does anybody really think that this tactic fools anybody? It sounds more like a child taking his ball and going home when he doesn’t get his way.

  46. 46
    Thorton says:

    Mung, I’d be really appreciative if you could supply the CSI calculations for the two diamonds Barry described in the other thread. No one else will. You can be the first.

  47. 47
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Thorton: “Mung, I’d be really appreciative if you could supply the CSI calculations for the two diamonds Barry described in the other thread. No one else will. You can be the first.”

    Don’t hold your breath. When you don’t answer Barry’s questions, you get put in moderation like Tintinnid. But when Barry, or the ID crown don’t answer your questions, you get put in moderation, like Tintinnid.

    I guess the outcome is inevitable.

  48. 48
    Barry Arrington says:

    No AB, when you prove yourself to be a pathetic sniveling coward like Tin, you get put in mod.

  49. 49
    rich says:

    Barry, words can hurt.

    Also, name-calling someone who can’t respond is beneath you, I think.

  50. 50
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Rich: “Barry, words can hurt.
    Also, name-calling someone who can’t respond is beneath you, I think.”

    Unfortunately it is not.

    So, Barry, can you point to the comment that put Tintinnid (me) in moderation? Let Rich and the others judge for themselves.

  51. 51
    Mung says:

    Arcatia_bogart:

    Hi Mung. I assume that you are referring to the lame DDDs. Is that the ID approach? Whenever you run into an argument that you are having a hard time countering, declare it a DDD and justify not responding to it? Does anybody really think that this tactic fools anybody? It sounds more like a child taking his ball and going home when he doesn’t get his way.

    Welcome back A_b, and give your cat a good scratch for me. Any cat lover can’t be all bad. But remind us again why you post here at UD?

  52. 52
    Joe says:

    Wow, only a complete moron would ask for the CSI of diamonds. Enter Timmy Horton.

  53. 53
    Mung says:

    Thorton:

    Mung, I’d be really appreciative if you could supply the CSI calculations for the two diamonds Barry described in the other thread. No one else will. You can be the first.

    If you want me to supply the CSI calculations for the two diamonds you’ll need to send them to me or convince Barry to send them to me.

  54. 54
    mjazzguitar says:

    Thorton-
    Can you please give us some examples of a code being “any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs” ?

  55. 55
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Mung: “Welcome back A_b, and give your cat a good scratch for me. Any cat lover can’t be all bad. But remind us again why you post here at UD?”

    My cat is doing well. He lost a fight with a dog but emerged with only a limp. The dog has an infection.

    I never stopped commenting. I have had many names, but Barry eventually catches on and I get banned. I comment here to see how people will respond. But keep in mind, I have always been civil and polite. Unlike some (OK, just one) I have never called anyone a pathetic snivelling coward for providing a better argument than I have.

  56. 56
    Thorton says:

    mjazzguitar @ 54

    Thorton-
    Can you please give us some examples of a code being “any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs

    Any chemical reaction.

    The spectral lines in starlight that map to their constituent elements.

    The width of tree rings that map to the amount of precipitation in the corresponding year.

    Those are three off the top of my head.

  57. 57
    ciphertext says:

    One of the favorite and rather dishonest tactics of ID proponents is to equivocate over the different definitions of code. Human languages like English are intelligently designed codes where arbitrary symbols are used as abstractions to pass meanings. The sender and receiver have to agree beforehand on the arbitrary symbols and the abstractions. However, code can also mean merely any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs. Such processes don’t use arbitrary symbols or abstractions. They don’t pass meaning, don’t require agreement between a sender and receiver. When scientists speak of the DNA code they are using the second definition, not the first.

    Your first definition contains an error. In no “code” would you ever find an arbitrary symbol. A code in this sense would always follow a system. Arbitrary symbols that are agreed upon beforehand by the sender and receiver cannot be called “arbitrary”. They would necessarily be specific (or specified) symbols. The code conveys a meaning, even if that meaning is simply an identifier or classification (i.e. Serial No. 43567891, ISO 3166, UNSPSC 26101612).

    Regarding the second definition, I’ve never heard of a “code” being defined as:

    any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs

    Where did you obtain that definition? I would like to understand the reasoning behind such a definition. That definition is so unrelated to the first that I find it hard to accept as an actual definition. It is literally so broad as to no longer be useful. For instance, I believe I could use that definition to define the process of collecting rain water into a rain barrel at the end of a gutter and down spout. The mapping of the input, or rain on the roof, into the output, or rain barrel, would be accomplished via the gutter and down spout routing. Also, I could use that definition to describe the process of baking bread as “code”.

    In every definition of the word code I have read (English definitions), the definition indicates that code, when used as a noun, conveys a meaning be it an instruction, message, or identification/classification. I’ve simplified the definition so as not to be so tedious a read.

  58. 58
    Joe says:

    thorton:

    Any chemical reaction.

    The spectral lines in starlight that map to their constituent elements.

    The width of tree rings that map to the amount of precipitation in the corresponding year.

    Those are three off the top of my head.

    Not one code is on your list. It’s as if you think your ignorance and stupidity mean something. Strange.

  59. 59
    Joe says:

    Acartia_boagart, tintinnid- doesn’t matter as it has all been a bunch of BS, lies and misrepresentations.

  60. 60
    Tamara Knight says:

    @57

    Ciphertext, even if you can’t find a definition, the modern world of electronics is totally dependant on physical examples. Three simple ones spring to mind;
    1)Gray code: n bits in mapped to n bits out such that any increment to the n-bit digital number at the input changes the logic state of only one output.
    2) Hamming code: n bits in mapped to (n+m) bits out to enable the correction of single bit errors and the detection of two bit errors.
    3) Parity code: n bits in mapped to (n+1) bits out to enable the detection of a single bit error.

    And I’m still not clear what Barry means by “The DNA code” in the context of his question. Is it the encoding scheme or the “information” it encodes. If he similarly referred to “The Enigma code”, would he mean the workings of an Enigma machine, or the content of the intelligently designed messages sent using it?

  61. 61
    kairosfocus says:

    Cipher

    I just had Cloudflare eat a response to

    Thorton, 41: One of the favorite and rather dishonest tactics of ID proponents is to equivocate over the different definitions of code. Human languages like English are intelligently designed codes where arbitrary symbols are used as abstractions to pass meanings. The sender and receiver have to agree beforehand on the arbitrary symbols and the abstractions. However, code can also mean merely any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs. Such processes don’t use arbitrary symbols or abstractions. They don’t pass meaning, don’t require agreement between a sender and receiver. When scientists speak of the DNA code they are using the second definition, not the first.

    I will substitute a snip and comment,

    >> One of the favorite and rather dishonest tactics of ID proponents is to equivocate over the different definitions of code.>>

    a –> Well poisoning, turnabout accusation based on strawman tactics coming up and attempting to drive a wedge between true scotsmen and fake IDiots

    b –> Wiki, speaking against interest, on what a code is:

    In communications and information processing, code is system of rules to convert information—such as a letter, word, sound, image, or gesture—into another, sometimes shortened or secret, form or representation for communication through a channel or storage in a medium. An early example is the invention of language, which enabled a person, through speech, to communicate what he or she saw, heard, felt, or thought to others. But speech limits the range of communication to the distance a voice can carry, and limits the audience to those present when the speech is uttered. The invention of writing, which converted spoken language into visual symbols, extended the range of communication across space and time.

    The process of encoding converts information from a source into symbols for communication or storage. Decoding is the reverse process, converting code symbols back into a form that the recipient understands.

    c –> Wiki, on the genetic code used in ribosomes to assemble protein chains, and thus also at the heart of cell based life and many chicken egg challenges that evo mat advocats and fellow travellers prefer to skip over; note just how strongly this echoes the above:

    The genetic code is the set of rules by which information encoded within genetic material (DNA or mRNA sequences) is translated into proteins by living cells. Biological decoding is accomplished by the ribosome, which links amino acids in an order specified by mRNA, using transfer RNA (tRNA) molecules to carry amino acids and to read the mRNA three nucleotides at a time. The genetic code is highly similar among all organisms and can be expressed in a simple table with 64 entries.

    The code defines how sequences of these nucleotide triplets, called codons, specify which amino acid will be added next during protein synthesis. With some exceptions,[1] a three-nucleotide codon in a nucleic acid sequence specifies a single amino acid. Because the vast majority of genes are encoded with exactly the same code (see the RNA codon table), this particular code is often referred to as the canonical or standard genetic code, or simply the genetic code, though in fact some variant codes have evolved. For example, protein synthesis in human mitochondria relies on a genetic code that differs from the standard genetic code.

    d –> The D/RNA code is similar tot he prong height code used in Yale type locks, which are mechanical passwords. they are informational and show how we have encoding, transmission and storage, receiving, decoding and application in a destination.

    e –> They are meaningful, and based on conventions and comms protocols, i.e. rules that co-ordinate communication of meaning.

    f –> And, these are at the level of machine code similar to the hierarchy of abstractions: machine language resting on hardware, assembly language that symbolises in ways we can read, then higher level languages.

    >> Human languages like English are intelligently designed codes where arbitrary symbols are used as abstractions to pass meanings.>>

    g –> Actually, we are members of language comunities, which have ever evolving conventions or rules, e.g of spelling punctuation, grammar etc, all of which can be expressed in text form and fed into machines, e.g. ASCII.

    >> The sender and receiver have to agree beforehand on the arbitrary symbols and the abstractions.>>

    h –> We are members of a common community and no one person can arbitrarily change it or chaos results.

    >> However, code can also mean merely any physical process where the outputs are mapped to the inputs.>>

    i –> Artfully strawmannised to leave out the context of meaning, rules, agreements, co-ordination, information carrying capacity and functional specificity.

    >> Such processes don’t use arbitrary symbols or abstractions.>>

    j –> if human language phonemes and textual elements or braille elements are arbitrary and conventional in relevant senses, so are these, just they are not going to be consciously processed.

    k –> That is of course the key twisting point.

    >> They don’t pass meaning,>>

    l –> False, the distinctions used in code systems are profoundly meaningful, that is how they make a functional difference.

    m –> Load AA X is different from load AA Y, based on specifically the difference in codon and prong height match to appropriate tRMA’s loaded on their universal CCA tool tips with different AAs, X and Y. (As Thorton knows or full well should know. Cf the post on DDD 16 yesterday, here, noting the first diagram, from Wiki.)

    >>don’t require agreement between a sender and receiver.>>

    n –> equivocates conscious agreement and conventions expressed in rules embedded in teh fucntional organisation of a system.

    o –> To deal with a common side track, note the chaining chemistry that assembles the D/RNA base string or the protein AA string does not block any base form following any other of A/G/C/Tor U or any of the 20 main AAs form following any other, and the relevant functional and/or informational side chains or branches are at 90 degrees to the chemistry of chaining.

    p –> I repeat, the coded info, which is algorithmic in the case of D/RNA, is in three letter codons that use prong height patterns similar to a Yale type lock’s key, just pull one form your pocket.

    >>When scientists speak of the DNA code they are using the second definition, not the first.>>

    q –> a case of trying to drive a wedge between senses that have far more in common than in difference in teh relvant sense.

    r –> No significant ID proponent has suggested that DNA is equivalent of a human community language, but rather to a technical community’s conventions used to effect a machine language, but with prong height and with molecules not holes in punched paper tape etc.

    s –> To deal with another side track, ASCII text uses 128 state elements, 7 bits of info cap per letter. DNA uses 4-state elements in triplets, or 2 bits per string element, six bits per codon.

    t –> With a typical protein of 250 AAs that means 750 bases, or 1500 bits of info cap, in an obviously functionally specific context, so we know at first level I = 1500 bits and S = 1:

    Chi_500 = 1500 * 1 – 500, 1,000 bits beyond the solar system threshold, so designed.

    u –> I leave it as an exercise to the onlooker to count characters in Thorton’s clipped comment, and use 7 bits per character, where also S = 1. The answer will be the same, designed — which we separately know. And on trillions of test cases, FSCO/I is a reliable index of design.

    v –> Of course this answers to the talking point being pushed just now as to how FSCO/I ( the material subset of CSI) is hopelessly confused and not able to be quantified etc. Rubbish.

    w –> Of course, real codes will have redundancies that will affect precise values [that’s what Durston et al address] but this makes no material difference in aggregate, you have to account for hundreds of proteins, the ribosome assembly system and the chicken-egg dilemma involved in accounting for OOL with metabolising cells that use code based von Neumann kinematic self replicators.

    x –> Where, when we see that the FSCO/I deeply and abundantly present in the living cell is known to have just one empirically observed and needle in haystack analysis credible cause, intelligently directed configuration aka design, this puts design at the table of serious scientific explanations of the tree of life from the root up.

    y –> Which of course, evo mat ideologues and fellow travellers are loath to admit. Even, desperate.

    KF

    PS: On the strength of the tactics in use, maybe we should read DD as Darwinists’ desperate devices . . . 🙂

  62. 62
    Joe says:

    Tamara Knight- The point is nature cannot construct codes as codes are arbitrary, meaning they are not reducible to law nor regularity.

    The “DNA code” is actually the genetic code. And the genetic code is an actual code.

  63. 63
    Thorton says:

    Ciphertext @ 57

    Your first definition contains an error. In no “code” would you ever find an arbitrary symbol.

    The only error is yours. All codes designed to pass messages use symbols that are arbitrarily selected. A simple substitution code uses an arbitrarily chosen letter B-Z to represent “A”. If you get fancy you could use any of 127 unicode symbols, or you could arbitrarily make your own squiggles to represent “A”. You can also use arbitrarily chosen symbols to represent whole words or phrases. Paul Revere’s famous lanterns “one if by land, two if by sea” is a good example.

    The physical mapping of DNA isn’t arbitrary. You can’t decide one day that CGA will produce glycine instead of alanine. There is no message passed, so sender or receiver making up the arbitrary rules. It’s just chemistry.

    Where did you obtain that definition?

    In the dictionary. Are you really claiming starlight doesn’t contain information about the star and that tree rings don’t contain information about the tree’s past? Wow.

  64. 64
    Tamara Knight says:

    Joe, saying “DNA code is genetic code” does not clarify your position. Is the “genetic code” the method used to encode information within DNA, or the actual instructions on how to to build an organism that the DNA thereby contains? These are totally different concepts.

  65. 65
    Joe says:

    The genetic code is what it is- it is the code by which information in the DNA is converted to the information of proteins. BTW the information to build an organism does not appear to be in the DNA.

  66. 66
    Joe says:

    thorton:

    The physical mapping of DNA isn’t arbitrary.

    The genetic code is arbitrary as there isn’t any law that determines which codons represent which amino acids. IOW the genetic code is not just chemistry.

  67. 67
    Barry Arrington says:

    Tamara Knight over and over again uses DDD # 7: Definition Deficit Disorder. Like all users of DDD tactics her purpose is not to elucidate or discuss fairly. Her purpose is to obfuscate, muddle and distort. Tarmara, you are exposed.

  68. 68
    Tamara Knight says:

    @Joe

    The genetic code is what it is- it is the code by which information in the DNA is converted to the information of proteins.

    Thanks, thats clear now. Like Knit one or Pearl one until you run out of wool!

    BTW the information to build an organism does not appear to be in the DNA.

    Sorry, but your humour is lost on me.

  69. 69
    Tamara Knight says:

    Barry I’m a little puzzled by your reponse. Not only is the clarification I asked for fundamental to further discussion, but I would also have expected you to regard it as being at the centre of the ID concept, specifically separating any CSI you see as encoded in the DNA from the origins of the method of transcribing it.

  70. 70
    Barry Arrington says:

    TN @ 69. Just stop it. You’ve been exposed as an obscurantist. And here’s the thing about that. Once you are exposed, your obscurantism loses its bite. Further attempts are just sad. Again, stop it.

  71. 71
    Tamara Knight says:

    @Joe

    BTW the information to build an organism does not appear to be in the DNA.

    Perhaps it wasn’t meant to be humourous?

    I just mentioned your comment to a friend who has been an amusued observer of US Creationism for many years. He says the last time he heard that idea expressed by somebody calling himself Joe, the same guy was proposing that the best way to convince mainstream science about his theories was to plant a large bomb at a major international conference of Evolutionary Biologists. Would that be you?

  72. 72
    Box says:

    Tamara Knight #71, tell your friend – and yourself – to read up on epigenetics.

  73. 73
    Tamara Knight says:

    Box, would that not just tell me that “not ALL the information to build an organism is directly encoded in it’s DNA”? I am more than happy to accept that position.

    Joe seemed to be proposing something completely different. If it is the same Joe, I’m told it is some sort of “morpho-genetic field” which allows supernatural forces to control the development of an organism. Sound like ID-max to me.

  74. 74
    Box says:

    TM: I’m told it is some sort of “morpho-genetic field” (…)

    Tamara, are you by any chance referring to research on bio-electric signals in the membrane ; see e.g. this paper?

  75. 75
    Tamara Knight says:

    Box, I’m only reporting somebody else’s recollections, but I doubt it was even as recent as that paper. This Joe was proposing something so way out it would not have made PubMed. Some sort of magic scaffolding, around which the organism could apparently build itself, despite it being totally undectable by scientific observation.

  76. 76
    ciphertext says:

    @57

    Ciphertext, even if you can’t find a definition, the modern world of electronics is totally dependant on physical examples. Three simple ones spring to mind;
    1)Gray code: n bits in mapped to n bits out such that any increment to the n-bit digital number at the input changes the logic state of only one output.
    2) Hamming code: n bits in mapped to (n+m) bits out to enable the correction of single bit errors and the detection of two bit errors.
    3) Parity code: n bits in mapped to (n+1) bits out to enable the detection of a single bit error.

    I’ve found several definitions for the word code, just not one that is defined as Thorton put forth. He indicated in a later post that he found it in a dictionary, but did not share which one.

    The three examples you provided, are good examples of codes. I like them. Their development is what enables me to trust the fidelity of information on my hard drive, insures that what I type into my text box in this reply is what you (and others) will be reading, and makes calling my family on my cellphone a possible event. Being a code, by definition, they have an explicit purpose. They convey a specific meaning (error detection and/or error correction) to the receiver of the code.

  77. 77
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Barry: TN @ 69. Just stop it. You’ve been exposed as an obscurantist. And here’s the thing about that. Once you are exposed, your obscurantism loses its bite. Further attempts are just sad. Again, stop it.

    I don’t see a comment by tin and 69. And you declaring that someone is an obscurantist is not the same as proving it.

    Again, can you please point out the comments that led tintinnid to moderation and why they were so offensive.

  78. 78
    Box says:

    Tamara,

    TM #75: somebody else’s recollections (…) magic scaffolding (…) totally undectable by scientific observation (…)

    Reading all this, I’m fairly confident that your friend was talking not talking about ‘our’ Joe – it should be no surprise, after all Joe is a common name.

  79. 79
    Box says:

    Correction #78: “I’m fairly confident that your friend was not talking about ‘our’ Joe”

  80. 80
    ciphertext says:

    The only error is yours. All codes designed to pass messages use symbols that are arbitrarily selected. A simple substitution code uses an arbitrarily chosen letter B-Z to represent “A”. If you get fancy you could use any of 127 unicode symbols, or you could arbitrarily make your own squiggles to represent “A”. You can also use arbitrarily chosen symbols to represent whole words or phrases. Paul Revere’s famous lanterns “one if by land, two if by sea” is a good example.

    Yes, symbols can be arbitrarily selected. That doesn’t necessarily make the symbol arbitrary. A symbol cannot be “arbitrary”, otherwise it isn’t a symbol. Which was what I was objecting to in your first definition. In your examples, you list well specified symbols (not arbitrary) such as the English alphabet. Even the use of lanterns was specified (1 lantern by land, 2 lanterns by sea).

    In the dictionary. Are you really claiming starlight doesn’t contain information about the star and that tree rings don’t contain information about the tree’s past? Wow.

    What dictionary?

    I’ve made no such claims about starlight and tree rings. I am claiming that neither starlight nor tree rings are “codes”.

  81. 81
    Joe says:

    BTW the information to build an organism does not appear to be in the DNA.

    Tamara Knight:

    Perhaps it wasn’t meant to be humourous?

    It is a fact. Read “Why Is A Fly Not A Horse?” by geneticist giuseppe sermonti. You have no clue, do you?

    Thanks, thats clear now. Like Knit one or Pearl one until you run out of wool!

    No, not at all

  82. 82
    Joe says:

    For Tamara:

    To understand the challenge to the “superwatch” model by the erosion of the gene-centric view of nature, it is necessary to recall August Weismann’s seminal insight more than a century ago regarding the need for genetic determinants to specify organic form. As Weismann saw so clearly, in order to account for the unerring transmission through time with precise reduplication, for each generation of “complex contingent assemblages of matter” (superwatches), it is necessary to propose the existence of stable abstract genetic blueprints or programs in the genes- he called them “determinants”- sequestered safely in the germ plasm, away from the ever varying and destabilizing influences of the extra-genetic environment.

    Such carefully isolated determinants would theoretically be capable of reliably transmitting contingent order through time and specifying it reliably each generation. Thus, the modern “gene-centric” view of life was born, and with it the heroic twentieth century effort to identify Weismann’s determinants, supposed to be capable of reliably specifying in precise detail all the contingent order of the phenotype. Weismann was correct in this: the contingent view of form and indeed the entire mechanistic conception of life- the superwatch model- is critically dependent on showing that all or at least the vast majority of organic form is specified in precise detail in the genes.

    Yet by the late 1980s it was becoming obvious to most genetic researchers, including myself, since my own main research interest in the ‘80s and ‘90s was human genetics, that the heroic effort to find information specifying life’s order in the genes had failed. There was no longer the slightest justification for believing there exists anything in the genome remotely resembling a program capable of specifying in detail all the complex order of the phenotype. The emerging picture made it increasingly difficult to see genes as Weismann’s “unambiguous bearers of information” or view them as the sole source of the durability and stability of organic form. It is true that genes influence every aspect of development, but influencing something is not the same as determining it. Only a small fraction of all known genes, such as the developmental fate switching genes, can be imputed to have any sort of directing or controlling influence on form generation. From being “isolated directors” of a one-way game of life, genes are now considered to be interactive players in a dynamic two-way dance of almost unfathomable complexity, as described by Keller in The Century of The Gene- Michael Denton “An Anti-Darwinian Intellectual Journey”, Uncommon Dissent (2004), pages 171-2

  83. 83
    E.Seigner says:

    Tamara Knight

    And I’m still not clear what Barry means by “The DNA code” in the context of his question. Is it the encoding scheme or the “information” it encodes. If he similarly referred to “The Enigma code”, would he mean the workings of an Enigma machine, or the content of the intelligently designed messages sent using it?

    Don’t you see that the whole case for ID rests on equivocations like this? Therefore you get answers like you are using darwinian debate tactics and you’re exposed as an obfuscation master.

  84. 84
    Tamara Knight says:

    @Joe

    Read “Why Is A Fly Not A Horse?” by geneticist giuseppe sermonti.

    I did a quick Google search for that book. Top of the list was a review on a website called ncse.com. Let’s just say they don’t recommend it. I might read their review fully later if I have a spare minute, but after a quick glance it seems the author is not only a Creationist, but claims that “evolution contradicts the Second Law of Thermodynamics”. I’m afraid anybody who makes a claim like that is not worth reading without first establishing that he means only macro evolution. As I understand it, even Creationists accept micro evolution. If he has discovered a quantifiable Thermo-dynamic Barrier between the two that is a major step forward for biological research.

  85. 85
    Joe says:

    Wow, the code has been explained ad nauseam. And you can even search on the term “genetic code” and read all about it.

    The point is the genetic code is a real code, there isn’t any metaphor. It is arbitrary which means there isn’t any law or physical necessity by which the code is determined. Yet it exists and its existence requires an explanation. ID says that seeing that all known codes require intelligent design, this is no different. So we have something that is inexplicable by law, regularity, accidents, errors or mistakes AND it is something we know requires an intelligent designer.

    And yes, it matters.

  86. 86
    Joe says:

    Tamara, The NCSE is a cry-baby propaganda site. Why don’t you tell us how you determined what makes an organism what it is is the DNA (genome)? What does the NCSE have to say about it?

    As for the book, well it is full of science and could easily be refuted. Attacking the author is chicken-sh!t. Get to the evidence or shut up.

    Pathetic people.

  87. 87
    Tamara Knight says:

    @ E.Seigner

    Don’t you see that the whole case for ID rests on equivocations like this?

    I didn’t, but I think I am rapidly coming to that conclusion. A few of weeks reading this blog has been a real eye-opener.

  88. 88
    Joe says:

    Giuseppe Sermonti is a well respected geneticist. He was the editor of a peer-reviewed journal. And to attack someone just because he points out reality, is sad.

    But we await your peer-reviewed article that demonstrates what makes an organism what it is is its DNA. Happy hunting. If you didn’t come back until you found it you would never be coming back…

  89. 89
    Joe says:

    Umm the “equivocations” are all in your heads.

  90. 90
    Tamara Knight says:

    Attacking the author is chicken-sh!t.

    I wasn’t attacking the author, I was questioning his opinions. Do you think any form of evolution would invalidate 2LoT?

  91. 91
    Joe says:

    Hey Barry- Here is another one- Tamara Knight sez she ain’t going to read a science book cuz the NCSE bad-mouthed the author.

  92. 92
    Joe says:

    Why don’t you just read about the genetics part? You know the part that is backed by the evidence and the part that is actually relevant?

    That the second law exists, to me, is evidence against materialism.

  93. 93
    Joe says:

    Also read comment 82, please. It’s based on research.

  94. 94
    Thorton says:

    Interesting that Barry called people “sniveling cowards” for not addressing his loaded question but as soon as someone did Barry bailed from the thread. Sniveling coward indeed.

  95. 95
    Thorton says:

    ciphertext

    I’ve made no such claims about starlight and tree rings. I am claiming that neither starlight nor tree rings are “codes”.

    They are not intelligence produced codes using symbols as abstraction. They are however non-intelligent physical processes that encode information into physical manifestations. Just like the chemistry behind DNA –> amino acids does.

    “Code” doesn’t always imply intelligence no matter how loudly the ID-Creationists bawl.

  96. 96
    Acartia_bogart says:

    “Interesting that Barry called people “sniveling cowards” for not addressing his loaded question but as soon as someone did Barry bailed from the thread. Sniveling coward indeed.”

    I couldn’t agree more. But you forgot “pathetic”.

  97. 97
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Busy elsewhere with other things, too much so to monitor so just a note for those who will be helped. Codes, of course, are language [and indeed, rules or conventions leading to protocols], and in the case of machine code, require a lot of carefully co-ordinated machinery to work. I get the impression we are dealing with people who know little of computer organisation or architecture. The notion that so much interwoven, interacting FSCO/I comes about by lucky chance and mechanical necessity is indistinguishable from believing in the magical properties of matter. But then, that’s what today’s materialist seems required to swallow. Sad. KF

  98. 98
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: The credibly accurate binary or decimal sequence of digits of pi is certainly functional, is specific and beyond a threshold of complexity would be maximally unlikely to arise by blind chance and/or mechanical necessity. An algorithm to generate pi on an execution device, jointly would with high confidence exceed 73 ASCII characters of info to specify. KF

  99. 99
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Just the number of pages on the Internet, is in the past the trillion level. KF

  100. 100
    Mung says:

    Acartia_bogart:

    I comment here to see how people will respond.

    Would it be unfair to say that you post in order to evoke a response so that you can observe the sort of response that your post evokes?

    Are you a sociologist engaged in a serious study? Is this a sport for you? A guilty pleasure? Would it be a mistake for people here to take your posts as containing serious intellectual content?

    Some people appear to have been fooled into taking you seriously. I think you’re a troll. I’d hate to think I misjudged you though.

  101. 101
    Mung says:

    E.Seigner:

    Don’t you see that the whole case for ID rests on equivocations like this? Therefore you get answers like you are using darwinian debate tactics and you’re exposed as an obfuscation master.

    This is just weird. E.Seigner, unless I have a complete misreading, believes in intelligent design. Everything is designed! It just seems to me that the “everything is designed” crowd is more likely to be the one engaged in equivocation.

  102. 102
    Mung says:

    Thorton, I am still waiting on those diamonds. You do want me to calculate the CSI on them, right?

  103. 103
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Mung: “Would it be unfair to say that you post in order to evoke a response so that you can observe the sort of response that your post evokes?”

    Yes, that would be fair. Can you point me to anyone here who doesn’t do this? No? I didn’t think so. But provoking responses is where the most productive discussions arise.

    Am I a troll? That would depend on perspective. Am I anti-ID? Yes. But it is based on forty-five years if reading, education and experience. But just because I am anti-ID, does that make me a troll? I would hope not. Have I ever been rude, abussive or taken part in name calling? No. Although I have experienced all of this.

    If you can give me examples of my trolling behaviour, I am willing to listen.

  104. 104
    Mung says:

    Arcata_bogart,

    I can readily give you reasons for why I have judged you to be a troll. Amazing, that.

    Here’s one exchange:

    Mung: Why ought anyone even bother to attempt to provide you with an answer to that question?

    Arcatia_bogart: Personally, I don’t care one way or the other.

    Here’s another:

    Mung: But given that you don’t care one way or another, why are you even bothering to post here at UD?

    Acartia_bogart: Let’s just call it a guilty pleasure.

    And another:

    Mung: You obviously care, which directly contradicts your assertion that you don’t care. You’re a liar.

    Acartia_bogart: if I cared, that would hurt.

    Don’t get me wrong. Trolls have their place. They just shouldn’t be taken seriously.

    They don’t, for example, deserve an OP that attempts to provide a serious response to something they asked, because they are not really interested in any response beyond the emotional.

    Intellectual engagement is out of the question.

    I’ve given you something better than examples. I have given reasons why you should not be taken seriously.

    And you have reasons why you should be taken seriously, based upon your previous activities here at UD? Do tell.

    Did you ever provide a substantive response to the OP here:

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....t-by-heks/

  105. 105
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Mung, if I remember correctly, I was jumped on by a few people for complimenting HeKS on his first OP. That says more about the people jumping all over me than it does about me.

    As far as the examples you provided of our communications back and forth, I admit that I was behaving trollishly, but it was in response to your trollishly behaviour. I am not proud if it, but I also won’t hide from it.

    With regard to whether or not I should be taken seriously, there certainly were enough OPs written about what I have said (either as Acartia_Bogart, William Spearshake, Tintinnid, Stenosemella and others). Obviously whatever I said was fodder for Further discussion, which is a good thing. If my comments were completely without merit, why would Barry waste so much time on them? And if they were completely without merit, why would he repeatedly ban me and delete my comments. It certainly couldn’t be because of abusive language, racism, bigotry, or blasphemy (oh wait, I was banned once for blasphemy for demonstrating that Jesus was guilty of using one of the fallacious arguments that Barry accused me of; and he deleted what I said so that nobody could judge for themselves). I have never called someone’s comment staggeringly stupid, or said that someone was incapable of rational argument, or that someone was a pathetic snivelling coward. And, more importantly, I never tried to rationalize that these comments were not insults, just astute observations.

    The fact that you consider me to be a troll will cost me no lost sleep. I compare by behaviour to people like Querius, Joe, Mapou, Barry and a few others, I come across as clean as a Boy Scout. Yet they are the honoured citizens of UD. And any non biased observer would conclude the same thing.

  106. 106
    Mung says:

    Arcatia_bogart:

    Mung, if I remember correctly, I was jumped on by a few people for complimenting HeKS on his first OP. That says more about the people jumping all over me than it does about me.

    The HeKS OP was after the fact. You’d already established yourself as a troll. HeKS took you seriously. A mistake.

    You didn’t compliment HeKS on his first OP, you complimented HeKS for presenting an accurate description of your position.

    After complimenting HeKS for accurately presenting your position, you then failed to engage his OP in a substantive manner.

    Ergo, you’re a troll.

  107. 107
    Acartia_bogart says:

    Mung: “After complimenting HeKS for accurately presenting your position, you then failed to engage his OP in a substantive manner.”

    I complimented HeKS for presenting my argument fairly, in context, and without bias. That was sincere. He did that. Why do you have such a hard time accepting that? I did not feel like discussing the subject further. Again, why do you have a problem with that? I have been told so often on UD, and by the moderator no less, to just stop. But when I chose to stop on my own accord, I also get criticized. Maybe UD should come with an instruction manual.

  108. 108
    Thorton says:

    Mung

    Thorton, I am still waiting on those diamonds. You do want me to calculate the CSI on them, right

    You don’t need the actual diamonds to provide the methodology for calculating CSI in them. We both know neither you nor any of your ID-Creationist buddies can provide such methodology so why pretend? Weaseling excuses are apparently the sole output of ID proponents.

  109. 109
    E.Seigner says:

    Mung

    This is just weird. E.Seigner, unless I have a complete misreading, believes in intelligent design.

    You have a complete misreading. The phrase “intelligent design” doesn’t even make sense to me. “Design” by itself, yes. “Intelligence” by itself, yes. “Intelligent design”, no. What is it supposed to mean? Is it supposed to be contrasted from “unintelligent design”? Or from “intelligent non-design”? What are those supposed to mean?

    As said, makes no sense. Particularly, makes no sense as a purportedly scientific term. FYI, I am a linguist who has been employed as a terminologist. The term “intelligent design” does not pass my scrutiny.

  110. 110
    kairosfocus says:

    F/N: Meanwhile, common garden variety files all over the Internet, in MP3 players, cams, phones etc all show examples of what FSCO/I is about.

    Where, such familiar items demonstrate beyond reasonable — operative word — doubt that it is observable and readily measurable.

    At simplest level, by determining that there is functionally specific info there [dependent on particular config], and counting the chain length of y/n q’s required or used to specify the actual config used from the field of possible configs, i.e. in binary . . . two state . . . digits, aka bits — or, more descriptively accurately, functionally specific bits. In technical communicative contexts, somewhat more elaborate metrics can be used due to redundancies, e.g. helpful in lossless data compression.

    And,

    a: as highly contingent things can be accounted for on blind chance or intelligently directed configuration (aka design — and to address notorious tendencies to twist language, INTELLIGENT design for emphasis),

    b: it makes sense to identify a needle in haystack threshold beyond which,

    c: for functionally specific — thus highly constrained by the need to have many, well-matched, correctly arranged and coupled parts or facets etc — organisation of at least that complexity,

    d: it is maximally implausible that such comes about by design. Where,

    e: a useful such threshold for our solar system of ~ 10^57 atoms, is 500 bits, implying a config space of 3.27*10^150 possibilities.

    f: So, we may measure complexity in bits, using standard info metrics, I, thus

    g: we may also observe functional specificity (most easily by vulnerability to random perturbation), and

    h: assign what economists and statisticians call a dummy variable, S that

    i: is zero as default (implying not credibly functionally specific), but

    j: on observing such specificity can be set to 1. Then

    k: by subtracting the threshold level, 500, from the product I*S, we have a design threshold metric:

    Chi_500 = I*S – 500, in bits beyond the solar system threshold,

    l: in a context where, the 10^57 atoms of our solar system, each observing a tray of 500 coins every 10^-14 s, for the 10^17 s that is a generous estimate of sol system lifespan to date, would yield 10^88 observations as an upper limit of the capacity of our sol system to do so. (This is also a measure of the number of possible chemical level interactions of the atoms of the sol system to date. 10^-14 s is a fast chem rxn time.)

    m: Which, is comparable to the 3.27*10^150 possible configs of 500 H/T coins, and is comparable to a sample of one straw to a cubical haystack 1,000 light years across, comparably thick as our barred spiral galaxy at its central bulge. So also

    n: were such a haystack superposed on our galactic neighbourhood, and were such a sample taken blindly, by chance and/or blind mechanical necessity, with practical certainty, it would pick up only straw.

    o: For, while a star may be ~ 1/2 million miles across, stellar separations are on the order of several light years. (E.g. Earth’s next nearest neighbour is 4 LY away.)

    p: Thus, any blind search of a config space of 500 bits on the gamut of the sol system, is maximally unlikely to detect FSCO/I.

    q: Where, too, FSCO/I can come in the form of digitally . . . discrete state . . . coded strings, or in specific configs such as we often see in engineering diagrams, particularly exploded views that show us nodes and arcs networks.

    r: Such a network or diagram is now often rendered in AutoCAD or similar software, reducing it to coded strings of bits, i.e. Y/N questions chained.That is,

    s: discussion on FSCO/I rich strings is without loss of generality, WLOG.

    Thus, we have in hand an observed phenomenon, FSCO/I.

    It is quantifiable and is relevant to proposals to create FSCO/I rich entities by blind chance and mechanical necessity. On the gamut of our sol system, 500 bits is a threshold beyond which that is maximally implausible. For the observed cosmos as a whole, 1,000 bits is an even more generous limit. Or in more familiar textual terms, 73 or 143 ASCII characters, equivalent to 10 or 20 typical English words. ASCII characters also being relevant to computer code which is often written as raw text files.

    On trillions of known cases, i.e. start with the Internet, FSCO/I is empirically reliable as an index of design, and attempts to provide claimed counter examples on long experience, reduce to design in the background.

    So, design thinkers are entitled to hold on best current explanation inductive grounds, that FSCO/I is a highly reliable index of design.

    Of course cell based life, the dozens of onserved body plans and the underlying physics of the observed cosmos are all chock full of FSCO/I.

    And thereby hangs a huge debate, as that points like a spear, straight at the heart of a major worldview narrative, evolutionary materialism that purports to explain everything from hydrogen to humans on blind chance and mechanical necessity.

    FYI/FTR

    KF

  111. 111
  112. 112
    Joe says:

    thortoc chokes:

    They are however non-intelligent physical processes that encode information into physical manifestations. Just like the chemistry behind DNA –> amino acids does.

    What a dishonest freak. The genetic code is an actual code with nucleotides representing, ie symbolizing, the amino acids.

    “Code” doesn’t always imply intelligence

    Yes, it does and only a dishonest freak would say otherwise.

  113. 113
    Joe says:

    thorton:

    You don’t need the actual diamonds to provide the methodology for calculating CSI in them

    Only a complete moron would ask to calculate CSI in a diamond. Enter timmy horton.

  114. 114
    Joe says:

    E Seigner:

    The phrase “intelligent design” doesn’t even make sense to me.

    That is because you are ignorant.

    “Design” by itself, yes. “Intelligence” by itself, yes. “Intelligent design”, no. What is it supposed to mean? Is it supposed to be contrasted from “unintelligent design”? Or from “intelligent non-design”? What are those supposed to mean?

    What a jerk. Intelligent design is used to distinguish between optimal design on one side and apparent design on the other.

    Dembski explains it in this:

    Intelligent Design is NOT Optimal Design

  115. 115
    Thorton says:

    Chubby Joke

    Only a complete moron would ask to calculate CSI in a diamond.

    Er Joke, you’re the complete moron who’s on record as saying you can calculate the CSI of a cake by counting the letters in the recipe. You’re also the complete moron who’s on record as saying you can calculate the CSI of an aardvark by counting the letters in the dictionary definition.

    Thanks for another demonstration of just how useless the concept of CSI actually is.

  116. 116
    Joe says:

    thorton- diamonds are crystals. Crystals are not complex. Orgel went over that. IDists have beaten that to death. Obvioulsy you think your ignorance means something. Weird.

    Also you are also very mistaken as usual.

    you can calculate the CSI of a cake by counting the letters in the recipe.

    That is incorrect and demonstrates ignorance and dishonesty.

  117. 117
    ciphertext says:

    @95

    I suspect we could continue quibbling over the proper definition of “code” for quite some time. I find it difficult to accept your definition of “code”, and I think you are unwilling to use the one I linked to for the purposes of this discussion. I’ve spent some time looking through the various online dictionaries (e.g. Oxford, Merriam-Websters, etc…), however, I’ve not found a definition that is similar to the one you have provided. In all definitions of the word code that I have encountered, the code only exists after the involvement of at least one conscious entity has been taken into account. Usually, that entity is the developer of the code.

    I grant you that we can observe starlight from an entity such as a star and glean information about that entity (i.e. the star being observed through spectral analysis). I argue that the starlight itself cannot be considered a code. Nor can the tree rings. You might could make the argument that they (the chemical reactions generating starlight and the tree’s response to hydration evident in the tree rings) were “protocols”, that would be an easier task to argue..

Leave a Reply