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ID theorists publish new paper in Journal of Theoretical Biology

We hope the journal isn’t intimidated by Darwin’s Outrage Machine, Inc. Just think, some people are now allowed to bring this up. And not just as an inhouse titter, followed promptly by dismissal of the question. Read More ›

Rob Sheldon offers some comments on Karsten Pultz’s “Bicycle” ID thesis

Sheldon: "... in computer science, it is very difficult to make a random number generator. Successive runs of the code should not produce the same numbers. But most generators do." Read More ›

Karsten Pultz on why randomness depends on order

Pultz: Comparing to evolution, the randomness produced by the orderly dice, would be the same randomness having produced the dice itself, because that’s how evolution works, slowly building order by random events from the bottom up. Applying the same hypothetical process to bicycles the random event that I get a puncture when riding my bike would be the same type of event which initially created the bike. Read More ›

Why does it matter how many atoms there are in the observable universe?

If this figure of 10^82 is reasonable, we could ask questions like the likelihood of throwing a billion heads in a row in coin tosses. If that’s out of range, what about the likelihood of similar feats created by natural selection acting on random mutation (Darwinism)? Read More ›

Robert J. Marks: Pigeons can solve the Monty Hall problem. But can you?

The dilemma pits human folk intuition against actual probability theory, with surprising results. But the howler is that pigeons tended to get this right more easily than humans - at least in one study. (Another study found that it depended on the humans’ age.) Read More ›

Extraterrestrial civilizations: When all else fails, try Bayesianism

From ScienceDaily: Could there be another planet out there with a society at the same stage of technological advancement as ours? To help find out, EPFL scientist Claudio Grimaldi, working in association with the University of California, Berkeley, has developed a statistical model that gives researchers a new tool in the search for the kind of signals that an extraterrestrial society might emit. His method — described in an article appearing today in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences — could also make the search cheaper and more efficient. … The advantage of Grimaldi’s statistical model is that it lets scientists interpret both the success and failure to detect signals at varying distances from Earth. His model employs Bayes’ Read More ›

AI and pop music: Can simple probabilities outperform deep learning?

Haebichan Jung tells us that he built an original pop music-making machine “that could rival deep learning but with simpler solutions.” Deep learning “is a subfield of machine learning concerned with algorithms inspired by the structure and function of the brain called artificial neural networks.” (Jason Brownlee, Machine Learning Mastery) Jung tells us that he went to considerable trouble to develop deep learning methods for generating machine pop music but in the end… I made a simple probabilistic model that generates pop music… Eric Holloway notes that this is an expected outcome based on the fact that computers cannot generate mutual information, where two variables are dependent on each other. Can simple probabilities outperform deep learning?” at Mind Matters Today Read More ›

Silenced! Selectivity too close to truth?

Should science pursue truth regardless of consequences? Or must we succumb to political correctness? Must selectivity of females always equal males? Consider:
Academic Activists Send a Published Paper Down the Memory Hole – by Theodore P. Hill
“In the highly controversial area of human intelligence, the ‘Greater Male Variability Hypothesis’ (GMVH) asserts that there are more idiots and more geniuses among men than among women. Darwin’s research on evolution in the nineteenth century found that, although there are many exceptions for specific traits and species, there is generally more variability in males than in females of the same species throughout the animal kingdom.” . . . Read More ›

Does eternally inflating cosmology cause probabilities to fail?

From John D. Norton: (2018) Eternal Inflation: When Probabilities Fail. [Preprint] In eternally inflating cosmology, infinitely many pocket universes are seeded. Attempts to show that universes like our observable universe are probable amongst them have failed, since no unique probability measure is recoverable. This lack of definite probabilities is taken to reveal a complete predictive failure. Inductive inference over the pocket universes, it would seem, is impossible. I argue that this conclusion of impossibility mistakes the nature of the problem. It confuses the case in which no inductive inference is possible, with another in which a weaker inductive logic applies. The alternative, applicable inductive logic is determined by background conditions and is the same, non-probabilistic logic as applies to an Read More ›

Answering DiEb: Just what is “search” in a sense relevant to ID?

For some time now, objector DiEb has been raising the question, what do we mean by speaking of “search” in the context of evolutionary search. At 311 in the parody thread, she [IIRC] remarks: >>Search is a central term in the work of Dr. Dr. William Dembski jr, Dr. Winston Ewert, and Dr. Robert Marks II (DEM): it appears in the title of a couple of papers written by at least two of the authors, and it is mentioned hundreds of times in their textbook “Introduction to Evolutionary Informatics“. Strangely – and in difference from the other central term information, it is not defined in this textbook, and neither is search problem or search algorithm. Luckily, dozens of examples of Read More ›

Confusing Probability: The “Every-Sequence-Is-Equally-Improbable” Argument

Note to Readers: The past few days on this thread there has been tremendous activity and much discussion about the concept of probability.  I had intended to post this OP months ago, but found it still in my drafts folder yesterday mostly, but not quite fully, complete.  In the interest of highlighting a couple of the issues hinted at in the recent thread, I decided to quickly dust off this post and publish it right away.  This is not intended to be a response to everything in the other thread.  In addition, I have dusted this off rather hastily (hopefully not too hastily), so please let me know if you find any errors in the math or otherwise, and I will be happy Read More ›