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And high school students don’t believe because …

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They don’t believe in evolution? No, apparently not.

Most people don’t, across North America, it seems.

Some idea why not, from a pop science article

An unusual arrangement of particles has been discovered in the cells of chicken eyes. It’s the first time scientists have seen such a system in a biological system — one that allows materials to behave like both a crystal and a liquid.

The unique arrangement is called “disordered hyperuniformity,” and it could help researchers design advanced materials, such as optics that can transmit light with the efficiency of a crystal and the flexibility of a liquid.

It has to do with the way the chicken’s four photoreceptors — violet, blue, green, and red — and a fifth light-detecting type are crammed into a single tissue layer on the retina. Finding a way to organize these five elements in an optimal way is a huge technical challenge (which is called a “packing problem) — but evolution found a way.

“Evolution,” used this way, = “magic” and we were all told not to believe in magic.

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32 Replies to “And high school students don’t believe because …

  1. 1
    Mung says:

    Evolution, just another word for Goddidit.

  2. 2
    Mapou says:

    Mung:

    Evolution, just another word for Goddidit.

    Here’s my take on it.

    *
    Darwinian evolution = Dirtdidit.
    Darwinist = Dirt worshipper.
    *
    *
    Creation = Goddidit.
    Creationist = God worshipper.
    *

  3. 3
    AVS says:

    Wow now that it some higher-order thinking in the two comments above this one! You guys must be the brains behind the operation here at UD.

  4. 4
    Mapou says:

    I knew a dirt worshipper would get offended. I was right.

  5. 5
    Mung says:

    I am certainly the brains behind some operations!

  6. 6
    AVS says:

    You guys are like the cheech and chong of UD.
    Same IQ and everything

  7. 7
    Mapou says:

    AVS, you take yourself too seriously, dude. I recommend that you get stoned regularly. It will get you to relax and accept the fact that, in the great scheme of things, you are insignificant. You know nothing as you ought to know. 😀

  8. 8
    AVS says:

    Regularly huh? I take it that is what you do? I guess that doesn’t surprise me.
    While I am a fan of “everything in moderation,” I do need to be able think extremely clearly on a regular basis. I am glad that you do not, good for you!

  9. 9
    Moose Dr says:

    My daughter brought home her broken robot, a school project. It was missing a rubber wheel. My cat attacks the garbage can and spills garbage all over the place. As I clean up the mess I find a little rubber thingy. I’m like, I wonder if this will work to fix my daughter’s robot? Its not that it’ll work, its exactly the same! However, it doesn’t have a hole in the middle. It has never been used as a robot wheel, its supposed to be a rubber furniture foot. I pull out the awl on my handy swiss army knife, and poof, the robot is fixed. (True story, happened about an hour ago.)

    Now, the evolutionists amongst us will declar, “good luck”. They may, but I call it a miracle. I see the grace of God responding to my daughter’s situation.

    Miracles happen all of the time. All we need to do is open our eyes to them. If miracles have been happening forever, aren’t they a far better explanation for DNA than random chance is?

    miracle = goddidit
    dirtdidit = wow, that was lucky.

  10. 10
    ppolish says:

    AVS, have you ever taken peyote?

    Way back in college on the tail end of a peyote “trip” I hallucinated Jesus. Walking towards me through an Arizona wash, very white robes and all. Scared me back into my apartment. Scared and very happy.

    Probably some homeless guy? Oh Peyote.

  11. 11
    AVS says:

    Ha no, polak, I stuck to the basics.

  12. 12
    Mung says:

    AVS, what’s more basic than peyote?

  13. 13
    Dionisio says:

    Could it be that AVS is just a cryptic pseudonym behind which one of the moderators of this blog hides his identity, in order to play games with us, pretending to be a fool who writes all that nonsense, just for the sake of having fun?
    How else can we explain the fact that his comments are not screened out as expected?

  14. 14
    AVS says:

    Dio you apparently quit your 6-figure job to study biology and are currently broke because of it, and yet you subscribe to various science magazines.

    I’d be careful about throwing that word “fool” around if I were you.

  15. 15
    Eric Anderson says:

    Dionosio @13:

    ROFL!

  16. 16
    gpuccio says:

    Dionisio:

    Indeed, I had the same doubt myself. He is too good to be true. (AVS, can I say “good”, or should I be careful?)

  17. 17
    Dionisio says:

    I’m starting to think AVS is someone who pretends to be a fool, hiding behind that cryptic pseudonym AVS, writing nonsense, just to test our patience and see how we react, for the sake of having fun, or perhaps for training purpose, so we learn writing skills to deal with annoying people, who don’t care about discussing issues, but just want to bother.

    I’ve subscribed to receive emails from a number of scientific or popular science online journals, like cell.com, and others of that kind. All I had to do was provide my email address. They send the information free of charge. I can read the abstracts, and sometimes they allow free PDF downloads. It didn’t cost me a penny.

    Anyways, for my low level of science understanding, the abstracts are sufficient in most cases, in order to get an idea of the subject. If I want to read more, I search the subject online. Some of my friends in Canada, USA and Scandinavia, have fee access to most science journals, but I don’t want to abuse those channels, because it would mean an ethical violation. So I’m fine with the abstracts. Anyways, the number and frequency of those emails is so high, that I don’t have time even to peruse through the inbox.

    I didn’t have to buy books, just borrowed them from the local library. Didn’t have to pay to take basic biology-related online classes. Therefore, it’s well known that one can learn a few things at a very low budget.

    I was surprised to read in this thread, that someone who claims to know some science, assumed that one can only have paid subscriptions to online journals, and only can have science books purchased at bookstores (online or local).
    That’s one reason I think we are dealing with someone who is pretending to be a fool, just for the sake of it.

    So let’s keep playing the game and continue to have fun. 😉

  18. 18
    Dionisio says:

    Correction:

    have fee free access to most science journals,…

  19. 19

    Using Genetic algorithms to provide good solutions to these NP-complete problems (of which the packing problem is an example of such optimisation problems) is a successful strategy.

    Using deterministic methods would be reasonably “intelligent design” but using a heuristic of random trial and error is not deterministic and it is not reasonably “intelligent design” given that the system that solves this is ignorant of why the solution works. It is “ignorant design”.

    This is where ID+evolution and also theistic evolution both fit well in that the “algorithm” of trial and error could have been kicked off by some designer/god and then the chemical processes in nature continue. In effect no more different from having someone construct a GA framework and then having a dumb machine fire off a solution. The original designer never created the solution – the GA script did – and certainly the dumb machine that triggered the GA solution hasn’t a clue.

    Anti-Evolution creationists are different and in the end relying on their god solving an infinity of NP-complete problems before breakfast. That has all the science value of Last Thursdayism and to call it ID is but rebranding creationism.

  20. 20
    phoodoo says:

    Lincoln,

    Name ONE GA that doesn’t program a solution into the algorithm.

  21. 21
    awstar says:

    LP @ 19

    Anti-Evolution creationists are different and in the end relying on their god solving an infinity of NP-complete problems before breakfast. That has all the science value of Last Thursdayism and to call it ID is but rebranding creationism.

    I’m what you would call an Anti-Evolution creationist and yes I do rely on “my” god to be omnipotent and omniscient in this manner. But He is also “your” god in that He created you too. No science (Last Thursdayism, ID, evolution, what have you) has value unless it points you to the truth of “our” God.

    That being said. The Bible creation story still beats your explanation in terms of plausibility and sensibility, hands down. What happens if your GA script actually turns out to be a person (In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us) to whom you need to make an account of how you ran His script?

  22. 22
    Roy says:

    phoodoo @ 20:

    Just about all of them. But if you want a specific example, then Dave Thomas’s Steiner tree GA doesn’t include any solutions. This can be verified by noting that (i) it doesn’t produce the same results on every run, and (ii) it finds Steiner trees that the programmer wasn’t aware of. Also the code is not only fully available, but is too short to include all the possible Steiner trees that the algorithm can generate for different nodes.

    I doubt this will satisfy you though since the tone of your post suggests you are more interested in bolstering your own biases than in truth.

    Roy

  23. 23
    bornagain77 says:

    Of related interest to NP complete problems found in biology. One place a NP complete problem is found is in DNA repair. DNA repair is a fascinating process to learn about. One facet of the process is highlighted here:

    Quantum Dots Spotlight DNA-Repair Proteins in Motion – March 2010
    Excerpt: “How this system works is an important unanswered question in this field,” he said. “It has to be able to identify very small mistakes in a 3-dimensional morass of gene strands. It’s akin to spotting potholes on every street all over the country and getting them fixed before the next rush hour.” Dr. Bennett Van Houten – of note: A bacterium has about 40 team members on its pothole crew. That allows its entire genome to be scanned for errors in 20 minutes, the typical doubling time.,, These smart machines can apparently also interact with other damage control teams if they cannot fix the problem on the spot.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....123522.htm

    What is interesting is that DNA repair machines ‘Fixing every pothole in America before the next rush hour’ is analogous to the traveling salesman problem. The traveling salesman problem is a NP-hard (read: very hard) problem in computer science; The problem involves finding the shortest possible route between cities, visiting each city only once. ‘Traveling salesman problems’ are notorious for keeping supercomputers busy for days.

    NP-hard problem – Examples
    Excerpt: Another example of an NP-hard problem is the optimization problem of finding the least-cost cyclic route through all nodes of a weighted graph. This is commonly known as the traveling salesman problem.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NP-hard#Examples

    Finding: Bees Solve The Traveling Salesman Problem – October 2010
    Excerpt: It is a classic problem in the field of computer science: In what order should a salesman visit his prospects? The traveling salesman problem may appear simple but it has engaged some of the greatest mathematical minds and today engages some of the fastest computers. This makes new findings, that bees routinely solve the problem before pollinating flowers, all the more remarkable.
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....n-problem/

    What is interesting is that quantum computers excel in exactly this ‘narrow’ area of computation:

    The Limits of Quantum Computers – March 2008
    Excerpt: “Quantum computers would be exceptionally fast at a few specific tasks, but it appears that for most problems they would outclass today’s computers only modestly. This realization may lead to a new fundamental physical principle”
    http://www.scientificamerican......-computers

    Speed Test of Quantum Versus Conventional Computing: Quantum Computer Wins – May 8, 2013
    Excerpt: quantum computing is, “in some cases, really, really fast.”
    McGeoch says the calculations the D-Wave excels at involve a specific combinatorial optimization problem, comparable in difficulty to the more famous “travelling salesperson” problem that’s been a foundation of theoretical computing for decades.,,,
    “This type of computer is not intended for surfing the internet, but it does solve this narrow but important type of problem really, really fast,” McGeoch says.
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/re.....122828.htm

    Since it is obvious that there is not a ‘classical’ supercomputer in the DNA, or cell, busily computing answers to this monster traveling salesman problem, in a purely ‘material’ fashion, by crunching bits, then it is readily apparent that this monster ‘traveling salesman problem’, for DNA repair, is somehow being computed by ‘non-local’ quantum computation within the cell and/or within DNA;

    Quantum Entanglement/Information in DNA – video
    https://vimeo.com/92405752

    Is DNA a quantum computer? Stuart Hameroff
    Excerpt: DNA could function as a quantum computers with superpositions of base pair dipoles acting as qubits. Entanglement among the qubits, necessary in quantum computation is accounted for through quantum coherence in the pi stack where the quantum information is shared,,,
    http://www.quantumconsciousnes.....puter1.htm

    The trouble for Darwinists with the finding of quantum entanglement/information, and computation, in DNA is that quantum entanglement/information requires a non-local, beyond space and time, cause in order to explain its effect.

    Looking beyond space and time to cope with quantum theory – 29 October 2012
    Excerpt: “Our result gives weight to the idea that quantum correlations somehow arise from outside spacetime, in the sense that no story in space and time can describe them,”
    http://www.quantumlah.org/high.....uences.php

    Yet neo-Darwinism holds that information ’emerges’ from within space-time particles. Scientifically, finding quantum entanglement/information in molecular biology is a direct empirical falsification of a primary Darwinian precept!

    Another place that a NP complete problem is found in molecular biology is in protein folding:

    Combinatorial Algorithms for Protein Folding in Lattice
    Models: A Survey of Mathematical Results – 2009
    Excerpt: Protein Folding: Computational Complexity
    4.1
    NP-completeness: from 10^300 to 2 Amino Acid Types
    4.2
    NP-completeness: Protein Folding in Ad-Hoc Models
    4.3
    NP-completeness: Protein Folding in the HP-Model
    http://www.cs.brown.edu/~sorin.....survey.pdf

  24. 24
    bornagain77 says:

    And not so surprisingly, protein folding is also notorious for keeping supercomputers busy for days:

    “Blue Gene’s final product, due in four or five years, will be able to “fold” a protein made of 300 amino acids, but that job will take an entire year of full-time computing.” Paul Horn, senior vice president of IBM research, September 21, 2000
    http://www.news.com/2100-1001-233954.html

    Networking a few hundred thousand computers together has reduced the time to a few weeks for simulating the folding of a single protein molecule:

    A Few Hundred Thousand Computers vs. A Single Protein Molecule – video
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lHqi3ih0GrI

    Of related note:

    The Humpty-Dumpty Effect: A Revolutionary Paper with Far-Reaching Implications – Paul Nelson – October 23, 2012
    Excerpt: Put simply, the Levinthal paradox states that when one calculates the number of possible topological (rotational) configurations for the amino acids in even a small (say, 100 residue) unfolded protein, random search could never find the final folded conformation of that same protein during the lifetime of the physical universe.
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....65521.html

    And as with DNA repair, and not so surprisingly, protein folding is found to belong to the quantum world, not to the ‘classical’ world:

    Physicists Discover Quantum Law of Protein Folding – February 22, 2011
    Quantum mechanics finally explains why protein folding depends on temperature in such a strange way.
    Excerpt: First, a little background on protein folding. Proteins are long chains of amino acids that become biologically active only when they fold into specific, highly complex shapes. The puzzle is how proteins do this so quickly when they have so many possible configurations to choose from.
    To put this in perspective, a relatively small protein of only 100 amino acids can take some 10^100 different configurations. If it tried these shapes at the rate of 100 billion a second, it would take longer than the age of the universe to find the correct one. Just how these molecules do the job in nanoseconds, nobody knows.,,,
    Their astonishing result is that this quantum transition model fits the folding curves of 15 different proteins and even explains the difference in folding and unfolding rates of the same proteins.
    That’s a significant breakthrough. Luo and Lo’s equations amount to the first universal laws of protein folding. That’s the equivalent in biology to something like the thermodynamic laws in physics.
    http://www.technologyreview.co.....f-protein/

    Another factor severely complicating man’s ability to properly mimic protein folding is that, much contrary to evolutionary thought, many proteins are ‘context dependent’ and fold differently in different ‘molecular situations’:

    The Gene Myth, Part II – August 2010
    Excerpt: the rate at which a protein is synthesized, which depends on factors internal and external to the cell, affects the order in which its different portions fold. So even with the same sequence a given protein can have different shapes and functions. Furthermore, many proteins have no intrinsic shape, taking on different roles in different molecular contexts. So even though genes specify protein sequences they have only a tenuous influence over their functions.
    http://darwins-god.blogspot.co.....rt-ii.html

    How all this plays out is investigated here:

    Origin of life: A problem in the origin of information – April 2014
    Excerpt: A hallmark of life is the way information flows between different levels of organization. In non-living systems, information flows from the bottom up–the properties of the individual parts determine the fate of the system.
    But with living systems, that flow goes both ways. Not only genes dictate the nature of proteins which in turn affect the functioning of cells, tissues and organisms, but the behavior of proteins, cells, and organisms also control gene expression. This is what Walker calls “top-down control” or “top-down causation.”
    And to Walker, this transition–from information seeping upward only to information flowing both up and down–is the key to understanding life’s origins. Put differently, the blueprint for building an organism isn’t stored in its DNA only, but it’s distributed in the state of the entire system.
    Dr. Sara Walker
    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....formation/

    ‘Top down’ causation is antithetical to basic Darwinian precepts:

    Intelligent Design Might Be Wrong, But Not the Way You Think by Stephen H. Webb – February 2014
    Excerpt: Darwin, like all moderns, believed that matter was something particular, that matter is composed of small bits of stuff called atoms, and thus it can be pushed from behind, as it were, without being pulled from beyond, by form.
    http://www.firstthings.com/web.....-causation

    Verse, Quote, and Music:

    Psalm 139:15
    My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.

    “Now the world appears to be divided into two realms, described by two different sets of physical laws. The quantum (world),, which is immaterial, coexisting possibilities, non-local, unified, connected, has some ultimate truth although we don’t know what it is yet, deeper levels of reality, and in many senses ‘spirit-like’. The classical world, the (illusory) billiard ball universe that we (appear to) live in right now, but not so, is material, Newtonian, definite, macroscopic, local, predictable, disconnected, post-modern, and somewhat boring actually. Now, what is life? If you approach life from classical physics, you see that biology is a set of self-organizing functions. There is no secret to life. Brain activities are equivalent to computers, consciousness is a epi-phenomenal illusion with no causal power. That’s the party line in standard neuroscience and philosophy. Accordingly, Thomas Huxley said years ago, ‘We are merely conscious automaton,’ helpless spectators., That’s the story we get from classical physics approach to the brain. Now,, applying quantum physics to biology, first by Erwin Schrodinger,,, quantum features (of biology include), non-local entanglement, super-position, unity, quantum coherence, quantum information. A kind of quantum vitalism, may play key roles in biological function.,,,”
    Stuart Hameroff – Does Quantum Biology Support A Quantum Soul? – video
    https://vimeo.com/29895068

    High School Musical 2 – You are the music in me
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IAXaQrh7m1o

  25. 25
    bornagain77 says:

    Of note to Roy’s claim:

    Climbing the Steiner Tree–Sources of Active Information in a Genetic Algorithm for Solving the Euclidean Steiner Tree Problem – 2012 – Winston Ewert, William A Dembski, Robert J Marks II
    http://bio-complexity.org/ojs/.....le/view/50

    Latest BIO-Complexity Paper Finds that on Irreducible Complexity, Michael Behe Has Not Been Refuted – Casey Luskin April 18, 2014
    Excerpt: In a new paper in the journal BIO-Complexity, “Complexity in Computer Simulations,” computer scientist Winston Ewert reviews much of the literature claiming to show, including via computer simulations, how irreducible complexity might have evolved by undirected means. He finds that “Behe’s concept of irreducible complexity has not been falsified by computer models.” The models include Avida, Ev, Steiner trees, geometric models, digital ears, and Tierra. Ewert reports that in many cases, the “parts” that compose the irreducibly complex system are “too simple.” The programs are designed such that systems that the programs deem “functional” are very likely to evolve. –
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....84531.html

  26. 26
    Axel says:

    Sounds like that old God of the Gaps again. All creative, omniscient and omnipotent.

    Naaah…. The world’s too complicated. Anyways, the Holy Spirit wouldn’t have enough RAM or memory or Gigabytes or whatever they dang computers use, to fix a bacterial cell. Just sayin’.

  27. 27
    Axel says:

    Nothing turned itself into everything, as we all know. not.

    Well, I’ve often heard people ask with biting irony: ‘What is it about the word, “No”, that you don’t understand?’

    Somebody on another board asked why nothing could not have turned itself into everything. But that was the first and only time, I’ve witnessed, when couching the response to that question ironically would simply have been redundant. All that was called for was a gentle, meat-and-potatoes ‘What is it about the word, ‘No’, that you don’t? understand?

  28. 28
    phoodoo says:

    Roy@22

    Roy, you could have chosen any GA you wished. Perhaps you could have tried to make it challenging, but with Thomas’s Steiner GA its not even close. Its a program which already has within its demands that a short distance is better than a long one, points that form a network are necessary, points are necessary, lines must be straight and two dimensional, they must be lines and not, say, soundwaves…and on and on… The computer already knows what a solution looks like (the solution must become a Steiner Tree!!! get it?) . So of course it fails the test miserably.

    But its even worse than what you claimed. The solution is ALSO written into the code! Its front loaded to insure that there are at least two variable points minimum in the answer. Have you spent even two minutes reading about this program.

    And this is the problem with someone who wants to believe in evolution, without wanting to use a skeptical eye. Anything which purports to be evidence is simply good enough for them. Your religion prevents you from allowing in truth.

  29. 29
    bornagain77 says:

    further to Roy’s GA claim:

    podcast – Dr. Winston Ewert: Irreducible Complexity Remains Unrefuted
    http://intelligentdesign.podom.....0_35-07_00

  30. 30
    bornagain77 says:

    podcast – Dr. Winston Ewert: Irreducible Complexity Remains Unrefuted
    http://intelligentdesign.podom.....0_35-07_00

  31. 31
    bornagain77 says:

    A Mono-Theism Theorem: Gödelian Consistency in the Hierarchy of Inference – Winston Ewert and Robert J. Marks II – June 2014
    Abstract: Logic is foundational in the assessment of philosophy and the validation of theology. In 1931 Kurt Gödel derailed Russell and Whitehead’s Principia Mathematica by showing logically that any set of consistent axioms will eventually yield unknowable propositions. Gödel did so by showing that, otherwise, the formal system would be inconsistent. Turing, in the first celebrated application of Gödelian ideas, demonstrated the impossibility of writing a computer program capable of examining another arbitrary program and announcing whether or not that program would halt or run forever. He did so by showing that the existence of a halting program can lead to self-refuting propositions. We propose that, through application of Gödelian reasoning, there can be, at most, one being in the universe omniscient over all other beings. This Supreme Being must by necessity exist or have existed outside of time and space. The conclusion results simply from the requirement of a logical consistency of one being having the ability to answer questions about another. The existence of any question that generates a self refuting response is assumed to invalidate the ability of a being to be all-knowing about the being who was the subject of the question.
    http://robertmarks.org/REPRINT.....heorem.pdf

  32. 32
    CandiceC says:

    Temporary students only believe in technology and progress. It gets harder and harder for them to believe in something like evolution. They can understand whatever they can hold in their hands or in their devices. Besides, my personal opinion is that nowadays high scholars have a very narrow way of thinking (they can’t even write their college essays so they buy college essays online and God knows what else they buy via Internet). So I think it is a sensitive topic

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