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  Topic: Evolution of the horse; a problem for Darwinism?, For Daniel Smith to present his argument< Next Oldest | Next Newest >  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 01 2007,21:26   

Quote (Alan Fox @ Oct. 01 2007,07:31)
Re the search for evidence of life on Mars, there are three possible outcomes that I can foresee.

1:Evidence is found for a life-form totally different from anything seen on Earth, say, not even based on carbon, but, for instance, built on silicon.

2: Evidence is found for a life-form bearing distinct similarities to terrestrial lifeforms.

3; No evidence found.

If 1, abiogenesis is almost inevitable on any suitable planet, given enough time.

If 2, lifeforms such as bacterial spores may travel across space as passengers in meteorites. (Panspermia)

If 3, we still don't know.

One other option for #2:

If we find life on another planet that is distinctly similar to our own, it could mean that abiogenesis acts according to laws as well.

Denton's position, as expressed in "Nature's Destiny", was that any life, anywhere else in the universe, would have to be remarkably similar to our own.

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 01 2007,21:33   

Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Oct. 01 2007,19:57)
Planned in advance essentially = frontloading, which presents problems that render the hypothesis unworkable on the face of it.

The processes of adaptation and speciation described in the standard RM+NS model have enabled living organisms to track the countless contingent changes in environments and ecosystems in which those organisms have been embedded over the last 38 million centuries (or so). Even with such tracking a vast majority of species ended in extinction, presumably when these variations become too extreme to track. Indeed, the successes, failures and interactions of some species mold the ecological context for the successes and failures of others, all embedded in a contingently changing physical and environment.  

"Planned in advance" would require storage in advance of the countless adaptations, speciation events, ecoloogical interactions, and even extinction events that have been entailed in the story of the survival of life on earth within this endless succession of changing environments and ecosystems, as well as a program determining in advance the order in which these changes unfold. Yet the environmental transitions with with life has been confronted, and that demand these changes, result from physical processes (planetary, geological, meteorological, astronomical, etc.) that are themselves inherently contingent and unguided and which cannot themselves possibly have been "arranged," "planned," or "predicted." Moreover, we are talking the varied environments and apposite adaptations of every extinct and every extant lineage of descent that have taken their places among the astronomical number of ramifications of the tree of life.

With that in mind, "preplanned" becomes utterly implausible and even absurd, in my view.

Yes.  It would be a remarkable feat wouldn't it?

But the more we learn about DNA, the more remarkable it becomes.  For instance, the embedding and overlapping of coding areas radically changes the amount of information that can be stored in a genome.

Things that seem impossible, might just not be after all.

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4223
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 01 2007,21:40   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 01 2007,22:33)
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Oct. 01 2007,19:57)
Planned in advance essentially = frontloading, which presents problems that render the hypothesis unworkable on the face of it.

The processes of adaptation and speciation described in the standard RM+NS model have enabled living organisms to track the countless contingent changes in environments and ecosystems in which those organisms have been embedded over the last 38 million centuries (or so). Even with such tracking a vast majority of species ended in extinction, presumably when these variations become too extreme to track. Indeed, the successes, failures and interactions of some species mold the ecological context for the successes and failures of others, all embedded in a contingently changing physical and environment.  

"Planned in advance" would require storage in advance of the countless adaptations, speciation events, ecoloogical interactions, and even extinction events that have been entailed in the story of the survival of life on earth within this endless succession of changing environments and ecosystems, as well as a program determining in advance the order in which these changes unfold. Yet the environmental transitions with with life has been confronted, and that demand these changes, result from physical processes (planetary, geological, meteorological, astronomical, etc.) that are themselves inherently contingent and unguided and which cannot themselves possibly have been "arranged," "planned," or "predicted." Moreover, we are talking the varied environments and apposite adaptations of every extinct and every extant lineage of descent that have taken their places among the astronomical number of ramifications of the tree of life.

With that in mind, "preplanned" becomes utterly implausible and even absurd, in my view.

Yes.  It would be a remarkable feat wouldn't it?

But the more we learn about DNA, the more remarkable it becomes.  For instance, the embedding and overlapping of coding areas radically changes the amount of information that can be stored in a genome.

Things that seem impossible, might just not be after all.

Daniel, your response doesn't appear to reflect any comprehension of my objection whatsoever. Read it again.

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 01 2007,23:27   

Quote
I have to clarify here that this was not Schindewolf's view.  He held "mysticism" (as he called it) in contempt and thought that evolution proceeded by internal factors alone - which constrained it along certain paths.

How does this differ from the views of Lamark? How do these 'internal factors', whatever they might be, get translated into mutations and changes in gene frequences? Schindewolf, obviously, could not have expressed much of an opinion on the subject as at the time it was not even known what material carried genetic information. However, what is your explanation. Presumably you have thought about it as you are carrying the torch for Schindewolf.

 
Quote
He also proposed that evolution proceeded as if constrained by a goal.  He gives the example of the evolution of the one-toed foot on the horse - which began long before the horse moved onto the plains and the one-toed foot became advantageous.

You say he held mysticism in contempt yet at the same time believed that somehow horses not only knew that at some time in the future they would benefit from having fewer toes but were actually able to evolve towards that state? To me, that is a prime example of mysticism. Again, what mechanism do you propose?

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,02:10   

Quote (jeannot @ Sep. 30 2007,16:13)
Linné's classification was flawed. His nested hierarchy is largely inconsistent across characters, it is full of contradictions.
And I fail to see how this undermines Darwin's prediction. Linné formulated no hypothesis behind his classification, expect perhaps something similar to common design, which can predict anything (hence nothing).

Linnaeus first published his Systema Naturae in 1738.  How could it not be flawed by today's standards?  Hierarchies and evolutionary trees are still hotly disputed amongst those who classify organisms.
You are right that he formed no new hypothesis based on his hierarchy, but he was an adherent to natural theology - so that would be his "hypothesis" I suppose.
The point is that a nested hierarchy was postulated before Darwin's time so how could it be a prediction?

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,02:25   

Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Oct. 01 2007,21:40)
 
Daniel, your response doesn't appear to reflect any comprehension of my objection whatsoever. Read it again.

OK, I see that I missed some of your points (I was at work and answering your post while on a break - so I didn't give it a thorough review).

 
Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Oct. 01 2007,19:57)
Planned in advance essentially = frontloading, which presents problems that render the hypothesis unworkable on the face of it.

The processes of adaptation and speciation described in the standard RM+NS model have enabled living organisms to track the countless contingent changes in environments and ecosystems in which those organisms have been embedded over the last 38 million centuries (or so). Even with such tracking a vast majority of species ended in extinction, presumably when these variations become too extreme to track. Indeed, the successes, failures and interactions of some species mold the ecological context for the successes and failures of others, all embedded in a contingently changing physical and environment.  

"Planned in advance" would require storage in advance of the countless adaptations, speciation events, ecoloogical interactions, and even extinction events that have been entailed in the story of the survival of life on earth within this endless succession of changing environments and ecosystems, as well as a program determining in advance the order in which these changes unfold.

It would not require storage of all of these events.  It would only require knowledge of them by the designer, who would then implement programs that would be set up to anticipate such things.  How do animals anticipate natural disasters?  We don't know, but they do.  Perhaps there is some long-range anticipatory mechanism.
 
Quote
Yet the environmental transitions with with life has been confronted, and that demand these changes, result from physical processes (planetary, geological, meteorological, astronomical, etc.) that are themselves inherently contingent and unguided and which cannot themselves possibly have been "arranged," "planned," or "predicted."

Unless there really is an all knowing God.  
Quote
 Moreover, we are talking the varied environments and apposite adaptations of every extinct and every extant lineage of descent that have taken their places among the astronomical number of ramifications of the tree of life.

With that in mind, "preplanned" becomes utterly implausible and even absurd, in my view.

In your view (which I assume is an atheistic one), pre-planning would seem ridiculous.  In my view, it's perfectly conceptual.

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
oldmanintheskydidntdoit



Posts: 4999
Joined: July 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,02:41   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,02:25)
With that in mind, "preplanned" becomes utterly implausible and even absurd, in my view.[/quote]
In your view (which I assume is an atheistic one), pre-planning would seem ridiculous.  In my view, it's perfectly conceptual.

As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

--------------
I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".
FTK

if there are even critical flaws in Gauger’s work, the evo mat narrative cannot stand
Gordon Mullings

  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,03:03   

Quote (Richard Simons @ Oct. 01 2007,23:27)
   
Quote
I have to clarify here that this was not Schindewolf's view.  He held "mysticism" (as he called it) in contempt and thought that evolution proceeded by internal factors alone - which constrained it along certain paths.

How does this differ from the views of Lamark?

Schindewolf did not subscribe at all to Lamarckism:
   
Quote
an unbiased examination of the fossil material itself also reveals that absolutely no direct response to environmental influences or appropriate adaptations in the Lamarckian sense must necessarily be inferred...
Formerly, in emphasizing the supremacy of the environment, the properties and qualities of organisms were unduly disregarded.  Yet it should be obvious that in such chains of reactions and complexes of conditions the objects themselves must be credited with critical significance.  When I heat two chemical substances together, it is not the rise in temperature but the composition of the original material that is decisive.  The rise in temperature only triggers the reaction; under certain circumstances, it can be replaced by a different physical or chemical action (pressure, catalysts), and the result, determined by the original material, will still be the same.  At most, the environment plays only a similar role with regard to organisms; it can only provoke and set in motion some potential that is already present.
Basic Questions in Paleontology, pp. 312-313 (emphasis his)
   
Quote (Richard Simons @ Oct. 01 2007,23:27)
How do these 'internal factors', whatever they might be, get translated into mutations and changes in gene frequences? Schindewolf, obviously, could not have expressed much of an opinion on the subject as at the time it was not even known what material carried genetic information.
Schindewolf was familiar with the relatively new science of genetics:
   
Quote
For our phylogenetic approach, then, we shall take from genetics the basic pair of factors, random mutability and directive selection.
These two factors and their mechanisms provide a satisfactory understanding of microevolution, of the experimentally ascertainable modification of forms of lesser rank.  The changes observed here are usually confined to species and have nothing to do with innovation, with the creation of new organs, but always only with relatively trivial, gradual changes regarding size, shape, number, color, and so on in organs that are already present.
ibid., pg. 329 (emphasis his)
 
Quote (Richard Simons @ Oct. 01 2007,23:27)
However, what is your explanation. Presumably you have thought about it as you are carrying the torch for Schindewolf.

I have thought about it, but I'm not sure what my explanation is yet.  I fully expect more discoveries to reveal that DNA is deeper than originally thought, and that things like this will be found more and more often.
Quote (Richard Simons @ Oct. 01 2007,23:27)


       
Quote
He also proposed that evolution proceeded as if constrained by a goal.  He gives the example of the evolution of the one-toed foot on the horse - which began long before the horse moved onto the plains and the one-toed foot became advantageous.

You say he held mysticism in contempt yet at the same time believed that somehow horses not only knew that at some time in the future they would benefit from having fewer toes but were actually able to evolve towards that state? To me, that is a prime example of mysticism. Again, what mechanism do you propose?

He never said horses "knew" any such thing, and I'm not sure how you got that from my posts.  I'm afraid though, that I mischaracterized Schindewolf's views here.  He never used the term "goal" when describing his views - that was my word.

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
Daniel Smith



Posts: 970
Joined: Sep. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,03:09   

Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

--------------
"If we all worked on the assumption that what is accepted as true is really true, there would be little hope of advance."  Orville Wright

"The presence or absence of a creative super-intelligence is unequivocally a scientific question."  Richard Dawkins

  
Occam's Toothbrush



Posts: 554
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,03:57   

Quote
Things that seem impossible, might just not be after all.

Is there any proposition, however illogical and supported by evidence, that this sentence couldn't be used to support?

--------------
"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
------
"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
Occam's Toothbrush



Posts: 554
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,04:01   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,04:09)
 
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

It's amazing how convincing one's antintellectual meanderings become, once one simply applies boldfacing, italics, and underlining at the same time.  You do know you can use colored fonts, right?  There's smilies, too!  Then you'd really be proving your invisible and ineffective sky daddy.

--------------
"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
------
"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
oldmanintheskydidntdoit



Posts: 4999
Joined: July 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,04:13   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,03:09)
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

Humans are still here.

Did the "designer" plan better for them?

I'm not talking about individual organisms, I'm talking about species. As you well know.

Sharks - around alot longer then the Dodo (I presume).

Why the difference? If the intelligent designer is so intelligent why do some species go extinct much much faster then others? Presumably the same amount of effort went into each one.

--------------
I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".
FTK

if there are even critical flaws in Gauger’s work, the evo mat narrative cannot stand
Gordon Mullings

  
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,04:32   

Quote
Why the difference? If the intelligent designer is so intelligent why do some species go extinct much much faster then others? Presumably the same amount of effort went into each one.


Yeah he got rid of those walking, talking snakes pretty damn quick. ** poof  ** overnight they were mute and had to slide on their bellies.

Bwhahahahahaha.

Evolution just isn't intelligent, if it were there would be evidence everywhere that some things weren't designed but evolved instead.

Take for example talking donkeys, obviously designed; autistic donkeys, obviously designed; illiterate donkeys, obviously designed. Remedial schools for autistic illiterate donkeys with donkey speech therapists ....designed!

How can you guys NOT SEE THAT!!!!

The designer designed the lot no evolution necessary.

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,04:39   

Quote
Every living thing dies.  Everything.


*sniff...snivel...weep ...whine.* ...boo hoo hoo

Quote

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?


Oh drop dead intelligent ....that was.

Who do you blame for that BTW?

God? After all, he put that talking snake in the garden and er ..entrapped Adam into sinning right?

With friends like that who needs enemies?

--------------
The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
oldmanintheskydidntdoit



Posts: 4999
Joined: July 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,05:45   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,03:09)
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

There's a good case that HeLa cells will never die, at least as long as there are labs to be contaminated.

--------------
I also mentioned that He'd have to give me a thorough explanation as to *why* I must "eat human babies".
FTK

if there are even critical flaws in Gauger’s work, the evo mat narrative cannot stand
Gordon Mullings

  
Louis



Posts: 6436
Joined: Jan. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,06:01   

Why is dying a hiccup? It isn't.

"Natural selection" isn't "trying" to maximise individual survivability, "natural selection" is "trying" to maximise individual survivability to the point of successful reproduction.

Inverted commas and teleological phraseology are not significant. It's just convenient shorthand to get the point across.

Louis

--------------
Bye.

  
k.e



Posts: 1948
Joined: Mar. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,06:09   

Quote
There's a good case that HeLa cells will never die, at least as long as there are labs to be contaminated.


Imortal eh? So they are Jesus cells.

That HAS TO BE INCONTROVERTABLE PROOF JESUS EXISTS!!!

AND THAT HE IS A CANCER... and a lab WEED.

I'm just starting to get this ID stuff.

Man.... pulling stuff out of your ass and calling its science is EASY, everyone can be a scientist.

Whoever said confusing science with religion made religion look stupid was DEAD WRONG. I JUST PROVED JESUS IS LIVING IN A TEST TUBE NEAR YOU.

Praise the test tube.

--------------
The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
Albatrossity2



Posts: 2774
Joined: Mar. 2007

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,06:46   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,03:09)
 
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

That is the most ridiculous thing you have written so far (and that covers a lot of ridiculousness).

Besides missing the point that the discussion was about extinction of species, and not the death of organisms, this statement implies an inability to think about the consequences/predictions of one's hypotheses, as well as ignorance of well-known thermodynamic laws governing ecosystem functions.

Think about this for a nanosecond. If natural selection, or any process not involving miracles, was able to produce organisms that overcame death, how long would it take for them to consume all the resources on this planet? And then what? Without death, there is no life as we know it; death provides resources for not just the consumers, but the producers as well.

Death is not just a "little hiccup". If you think that immortality is something that can be achieved by natural selection, or even if you think it is a good thing, then you are not thinking at all. You are taking your theological constructs (the immortal soul) and trying to shoehorn reality into that construct. Sorry, but reality is gonna win this one.

--------------
Flesh of the sky, child of the sky, the mind
Has been obligated from the beginning
To create an ordered universe
As the only possible proof of its own inheritance.
                        - Pattiann Rogers

   
Occam's Toothbrush



Posts: 554
Joined: April 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,06:50   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,04:09)
 
Quote (oldmanintheskydidntdoit @ Oct. 02 2007,02:41)
As almost everything that has ever lived is extinct what does that say about the ability of this "designer" to plan?

Why bother to front-load if the organism is going extinct anyway?

Every living thing dies.  Everything.

It would sure seem that natural selection would have overcome that little hiccup by now doesn't it?

It's amazing how easily MET can be disproven, simply by posing a rhetorical question.  Clearly, now that scientists are finally faced with this one killer question--one that they've never thought of before and cannot answer--they can all just throw up their hands and admit goddidit.  I'm sure they were getting tired of faking all the evidence, suppressing all the ID research, etc. anyway.  Now they can just go to church for their answers, since DanTard has slain the Darwinist beast with this historic zinger.

--------------
"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
------
"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
Reciprocating Bill



Posts: 4223
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,06:52   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,03:25)
Unless there really is an all knowing God.  
     
Quote
 Moreover, we are talking the varied environments and apposite adaptations of every extinct and every extant lineage of descent that have taken their places among the astronomical number of ramifications of the tree of life.

With that in mind, "preplanned" becomes utterly implausible and even absurd, in my view.


In your view (which I assume is an atheistic one), pre-planning would seem ridiculous.  In my view, it's perfectly conceptual.

OH, an ALL KNOWING God. *Slaps forehead*. Why didn't you say so in the first place?

At least you're honest about what you are really about, which is more than I can say about most other proponents of views like this:

"An omniscient supernatural being (an all knowing God) with foreknowledge of every environmental shift in every inhabited environment on earth over 3.8 billion years (shifts that resulted from everything from chaotic fluctuations in the sun's output to the Yucatan asteroid) front-loaded into the first prokaryotic life appropriate preplanned sequences of evolutionary transitions (adaptations, speciations, extinction events) for every one of the countless lineages of organisms that would descend from those first organism over those ensuing billions of years."

Now THAT is science - of the same order that marvels at the clean fit between the five-sided banana and the human hand.

You must realize that given that you include extinction events in this scenario, which effectively eliminates any test of this pre-planned fitness, you have effectively rendered this model unfalsifiable and hence ejected it from the domain of science.

--------------
Myth: Something that never was true, and always will be.

"The truth will set you free. But not until it is finished with you."
- David Foster Wallace

  
George



Posts: 310
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,07:57   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 01 2007,19:37)
Schindewolf's book was published (originally - in German) in 1950.  While technically that was in the last century, (so was 1999), it wasn't "a century ago".
 

My mistake.  I thought you said he worked and wrote in the 1920s.

I wasn't questioning this statement:

Quote
Since in the later Tertiary, an expansion of plains at the expense of forests has been observed, this change in environmental conditions and the consequent change in the mode of life has been represented as the cause of linear, progressive selection leading up to the modern horse.


I was questioning this one:

 
Quote
However, in the formulation of this view, not enough consideration has been given to the fact that the evolutionary trend of reduction in the number of toes had already been introduced long before the plains were occupied in the early Tertiary by the precursors of the horse; these inhabited dense scrub, meaning that they lived in an environment where the reduction of the primitive five-toed protoungulate foot was not an advantage at all.
(emphasis mine)

My question is how did he know the environment at the time was entirely comprised of dense scrub?  If I were to guess, this statement is based on finds of macrofossils or pollen of scrub species coupled with other proxy data that gave clues about climate.  This may have been the prevailing view at the time.  Don't know.  Doesn't matter.  But I suspect hand-waving.

My point is that knowledge of what species were present at the time doesn't give an accurate picture of what the vegetation structure was at the time, especially over large areas.  I presume the ancestors of horses were widely distributed and not confined to a small isolated valley or two.

As you can see as you walk around in "the wild", vegetation structure varies considerably depending on climate, soil and other things, including the activities of grazing animals.  It is extremely unlikely that the landscape where the ancestors of horses evolved was completely dominated by "dense scrub".  It is extremely likely that there were some more open areas where having fewer toes increased fitness.

Schindewolf was overstating the case that the environment required to select for single-toedness was not present in the early Tertiary.  Because of this, he has no grounds for claiming that development of the trait preceeded selection pressure.

  
George



Posts: 310
Joined: Feb. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,07:58   

Quote (Reciprocating Bill @ Oct. 02 2007,06:52)
"An omniscient supernatural being (an all knowing God) with foreknowledge of every environmental shift in every inhabited environment on earth over 3.8 billion years (shifts that resulted from everything from chaotic fluctuations in the sun's output to the Yucatan asteroid) front-loaded into the first prokaryotic life appropriate preplanned sequences of evolutionary transitions (adaptations, speciations, extinction events) for every one of the countless lineages of organisms that would descend from those first organism over those ensuing billions of years."

'Course if you agree with this sentiment, I'm clearly wasting my time.

  
Richard Simons



Posts: 425
Joined: Oct. 2006

(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,08:48   

It is interesting that, when asked questions, those who accept the theory of evolution answer in their own words, with links to sources, while those who don't accept it cut and paste more or less lengthy excerpts of other people's writings.

 
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Schindewolf did not subscribe at all to Lamarckism:

"an unbiased examination of the fossil material itself also reveals that absolutely no direct response to environmental influences or appropriate adaptations in the Lamarckian sense must necessarily be inferred...
Formerly, in emphasizing the supremacy of the environment, the properties and qualities of organisms were unduly disregarded.  Yet it should be obvious that in such chains of reactions and complexes of conditions the objects themselves must be credited with critical significance.  When I heat two chemical substances together, it is not the rise in temperature but the composition of the original material that is decisive.  The rise in temperature only triggers the reaction; under certain circumstances, it can be replaced by a different physical or chemical action (pressure, catalysts), and the result, determined by the original material, will still be the same.  At most, the environment plays only a similar role with regard to organisms; it can only provoke and set in motion some potential that is already present. "

Basic Questions in Paleontology, pp. 312-313 (emphasis his)

And this differs from Lamarkism how (your own words, please)? As I see it, he is saying "Lamark claims they adapt to present conditions, I say they adapt to future conditions". This is less mystic and more reasonable because . . . (own words, please)?

 
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Schindewolf was familiar with the relatively new science of genetics:

That does not address the question. The question was "How do these 'internal factors', whatever they might be, get translated into mutations and changes in gene frequences?" In other words, how do the required changes in the DNA (that he could not have known about) take place? What makes a specific alanine change to leucine? Please answer in your own words.

Being able to answer in your own words is significant because it shows that you have thought about the issues to at least some degree.

 
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Linnaeus first published his Systema Naturae in 1738.  How could it not be flawed by today's standards?  Hierarchies and evolutionary trees are still hotly disputed amongst those who classify organisms.
You are right that he formed no new hypothesis based on his hierarchy, but he was an adherent to natural theology - so that would be his "hypothesis" I suppose.
The point is that a nested hierarchy was postulated before Darwin's time so how could it be a prediction?

Hierarchies are hotly disputed? Perhaps at some level, but they are being refined all the time. There is general agreement about the broad outlines and many of the finer details. Could you give an example of a hot dispute in taxonomy?

A nested hierarchy was postulated before Darwin's time? Could we please have a reference.

I think you still have not grasped the significance of a nested hierarchy and are confusing it with Linnaeus' use of a nested hierarchy in his classification scheme. The crucial thing as regards evolution is that it predicts the nested hierarchies will all be the same and that is what is observed.

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All sweeping statements are wrong.

  
Occam's Toothbrush



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,09:20   

Is it too late to edit the posting subheading to add the scare quotes DanTard has shown are so appropriate?
   
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Evolution of the horse; a problem for Darwinism?

For Daniel Smith to present his "argument"


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"Molecular stuff seems to me not to be biology as much as it is a more atomic element of life" --Creo nut Robert Byers
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"You need your arrogant ass kicked, and I would LOVE to be the guy who does it. Where do you live?" --Anger Management Problem Concern Troll "Kris"

  
Erasmus, FCD



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,09:53   

Schindewolf and the german school are at best mechanist idealists.  They see forms as internally generated by biochemical and physical restraints.  Many of these guys had a completely material theory, but some of them did not.  

Gould says that they have received a bad rap, and that there is an underlying reality to the idea that evolution has constraints.  Of course this is true, but I don't think it is true in the sense that Daniel means it.

Daniel, if you believe that species are not fixed entities (maybe you don't, I dunno, you tell me) then what is the barrier to speciation as an explanation for everything?

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You're obviously illiterate as hell. Peach, bro.-FtK

Finding something hard to believe based on the evidence, is science.-JoeG

the odds of getting some loathsome taint are low-- Gordon E Mullings Manjack Heights Montserrat

I work on molecular systems with pathway charts and such.-Giggles

  
Darth Robo



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,11:15   

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Every living thing dies.  Everything.



Isn't God dead?   ;)

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"Commentary: How would you like to be the wholly-owned servant to an organic meatbag? It's demeaning! If, uh, you weren't one yourself, I mean..."

  
k.e



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,11:28   

Quote (Darth Robo @ Oct. 02 2007,19:15)
Quote
Every living thing dies.  Everything.



Isn't God dead?   ;)

Yes, and right now he's spinning in his grave.

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The conservative has but little to fear from the man whose reason is the servant of his passions, but let him beware of him in whom reason has become the greatest and most terrible of the passions.These are the wreckers of outworn empires and civilisations, doubters, disintegrators, deicides.Haldane

   
Arden Chatfield



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,11:31   

Quote (k.e @ Oct. 02 2007,11:28)
Quote (Darth Robo @ Oct. 02 2007,19:15)
Quote
Every living thing dies.  Everything.



Isn't God dead?   ;)

Yes, and right now he's spinning in his grave.

"If Jesus was alive now, he'd be spinning in his grave!"

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"Rich is just mad because he thought all titties had fur on them until last week when a shorn transvestite ruined his childhood dreams by jumping out of a spider man cake and man boobing him in the face lips." - Erasmus

  
Tracy P. Hamilton



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,13:26   

Quote (Daniel Smith @ Oct. 02 2007,02:10)
   
Quote (jeannot @ Sep. 30 2007,16:13)
Linné's classification was flawed. His nested hierarchy is largely inconsistent across characters, it is full of contradictions.
And I fail to see how this undermines Darwin's prediction. Linné formulated no hypothesis behind his classification, expect perhaps something similar to common design, which can predict anything (hence nothing).

Linnaeus first published his Systema Naturae in 1738.  How could it not be flawed by today's standards?  
You are right that he formed no new hypothesis based on his hierarchy, but he was an adherent to natural theology - so that would be his "hypothesis" I suppose.
The point is that a nested hierarchy was postulated before Darwin's time so how could it be a prediction?


Of course Linnaeus' hierarchy was flawed.  Linnaeus' idea was not flawed.  This is why biology students still have to learn classification.

Predictions:  

Organisms unknown to Linnaeus or Darwin will fit into the nested hierarchy.  That is, we do not have to depend on Linnaeus to make the decisions, and in fact could not have if we call Linneaus' decisions flawed.  A prediction is something that must be true if the theory is correct.

This hierarchy would still hold for the majority of characters not considered originally by Linnaeus.

Extinct organisms will fit into this hierarchy.

Genetics will form the same nested hierarchy.

The mechanism - descent with modification - forms the same kind of pattern.

I took the liberty of moving one sentence to the bottom here:

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Hierarchies and evolutionary trees are still hotly disputed amongst those who classify organisms.


It is trivially true that if one is looking at a statistical process using 95% confidence intervals that you will be wrong about 5% of the time.  The remedy is acquiring more data, which sometimes confirms the conclusion or changes it.

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"Following what I just wrote about fitness, you’re taking refuge in what we see in the world."  PaV

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Henry J



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(Permalink) Posted: Oct. 02 2007,21:59   

Re "Genetics will form the same nested hierarchy."

There is the exception when horizontal transfers occur, but I gather that's quite rare in animals.

Henry

  
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