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Author Topic:   Intelligent Design just a question for evolutionists
Genomicus
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 46 of 60 (792230)
10-07-2016 12:54 PM
Reply to: Message 39 by jar
10-07-2016 12:17 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
A hypothesis of agency in the origin of life need not conflict with the modern evolutionary synthesis.

But does it add anything at all other than unsupported assertions?

Yes. To the degree that the Neo-Darwinian synthesis wields explanatory power? Absolutely not -- not even close.

But a case can be made that a teleological approach to biological origins can yield valuable insights. For example, the hypothesis of eukaryotic front-loading explains why core eukaryotic proteins have well-conserved structural and sequence protein homologs in prokaryotes, as opposed to some of these essential proteins having been cobbled together from non-functional stretches of prokaryotic genomes (e.g., pseudogenes). Further, specific design hypotheses provide predictions which can then be experimentally tested.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 39 by jar, posted 10-07-2016 12:17 PM jar has responded

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Genomicus
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 47 of 60 (792231)
10-07-2016 12:57 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by Dr Adequate
10-07-2016 12:48 PM


Surely the paper would actually have been rejected because clairvoyance is not an accepted form of scientific inquiry.

Eh, not really the point of that quote. The point of that quote is not to explore the nature of scientific publication practices. The point is to highlight how a genetic code was not an expected reality of the non-teleological framework.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 42 by Dr Adequate, posted 10-07-2016 12:48 PM Dr Adequate has responded

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Taq
Member
Posts: 7282
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 48 of 60 (792232)
10-07-2016 12:58 PM
Reply to: Message 36 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 12:01 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
Genomicus writes:

Sure, but those metaphors won't take you very far in terms of making sense of these phenomena.

And they don't take us very far in biology, either.

My statement was regarding whether your hypothetical cloud-dragon would still look like a dragon under higher resolution, not whether those clouds were intelligently designed.

Does this high resolution look at a protein look designed, or just like a mass of atoms?

That is a protein. You are claiming that they look like machines. What machine does that look like?

Again, calling oxygen and hydrogen "water machines" doesn't actually help us make sense of chemistry.

It doesn't help us in biology, either.

It is only biology, it seems, that requires engineering language in order to shed more light on various biological systems and phenomena.

It isn't required.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 36 by Genomicus, posted 10-07-2016 12:01 PM Genomicus has responded

Replies to this message:
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Genomicus
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 49 of 60 (792233)
10-07-2016 12:59 PM
Reply to: Message 43 by ringo
10-07-2016 12:50 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
But the Theory of Evolution does have to dovetail with any explanation we do have or will have about how life first arose.

Yes, but that we do not know how life arose on Earth has absolutely no bearing on the validity of the Neo-Darwinian synthesis and theory of common ancestry.


This message is a reply to:
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Genomicus
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 50 of 60 (792236)
10-07-2016 1:15 PM
Reply to: Message 48 by Taq
10-07-2016 12:58 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
And they don't take us very far in biology, either.

Then why exactly is the molecular biology literature replete with terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines?

Does this high resolution look at a protein look designed, or just like a mass of atoms?

Umm, that looks like a sophisticated two-part machine with interlocking modules.

But two can play this game.

ATP_synthase_UPDATED

That's a machine. Well, it's a machine according to the scientific literature, at least.

It doesn't help us in biology, either.

Really? Then tell that to published biologists who extensively use terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines.

It isn't required.

So why is it used so extensively?

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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Percy
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Posts: 16335
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.4


(2)
Message 51 of 60 (792239)
10-07-2016 1:22 PM
Reply to: Message 30 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 10:56 AM


Genomicus writes:

Not sure if you're referring strictly to DNA as a molecule here, in and of itself, or the whole genetic code. Because when it comes to the genetic code, there's plenty that's similar to it -- phenomena which we know are the products of agency. The canonical genetic code is a code in a very real sense -- this isn't metaphorical language employed by biologists. And codes and data transmission -- complete with error-correcting mechanisms, parity structure, etc. -- are known to be the products of intelligence.

It's fine to interpret my mention of DNA as a reference to the genetic code, and I think this is the strongest argument for ID. Placing it into Mike's preferred form:

  • Humans are intelligent and design codes.
  • DNA is a code.
  • DNA the was created by an intelligent designer

This isn't airtight, of course, since there could be non-intelligent origins for codes, but you and Mike acknowledge this. Your argument isn't that codes could only have been designed by an intelligence, but that codes exist in nature that are indistinguishable from human designed codes, and that therefore the possibility of intelligent origins for codes must be considered, or at least shouldn't be excluded.

Well, okay, but is this science or religion? In what branch of science or with what natural phenomena does science ever argue, "This could be the result of some agency far more intelligent and powerful than ourselves." None. With rare exceptions such arguments originate with religious adherents.

Let's confront the hypothesis of "DNA as an intelligently designed code" in a bit more detail. Upon first learning of the genetic code one could be forgiven for exclaiming, "My God, this couldn't have happened naturally." But then one asks where the DNA came from? From the parents. And where did their DNA come from? From their parents, and so forth back through all the ancestors and finally to when it wasn't even DNA. And how could species ever evolve? DNA copying is imperfect. And how does that not cause extinction of all life? Selection. And so forth with questions of ever broadening scope and answers that lead to an infinite supply of more questions.

No investigation of a bewildering scientific mystery finds discovery leading toward intelligent agency. What we learn is always in the direction of the natural. This is one of the things science gradually learned in the centuries after the Middle Ages, that divine providence (or intelligent agent in modern ID lingo) never turns out to be the answer. It is never argued in modern science, "We've tried and tried to find an answer for this, but we can't find one, so one has to consider a power far greater than ourselves."

IDists will argue, "No no, not a 'power far greater than ourselves,' just an intelligent agent. Intelligent, like we are, that's all." But it's hard to take them at their word - at heart they seek God, not aliens, for there's no answer for the infinite regression. If life here is the result of an intelligence, then where did that intelligence come from? Ultimately there had to have been a first intelligence, a god, and now the true motives of the IDist is revealed to be no different from the creationist.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Genomicus
Member (Idle past 34 days)
Posts: 846
Joined: 02-15-2012


Message 52 of 60 (792246)
10-07-2016 1:52 PM
Reply to: Message 51 by Percy
10-07-2016 1:22 PM


Well, okay, but is this science or religion? In what branch of science or with what natural phenomena does science ever argue, "This could be the result of some agency far more intelligent and powerful than ourselves." None. With rare exceptions such arguments originate with religious adherents.

That's kinda the whole point of SETI, though, isn't it? That there could exist signals out there that were created by some intelligence. Extrapolating from "an intelligence that's more powerful than ourselves" to the notion of gods is incredibly anthropocentric ("How dare there be intelligence elsewhere in the universe that is superior to ours"). We must acknowledge the real possibility that intelligence civilizations exist -- or have existed -- which are significantly more advanced than humanity at present.

There's nothing inherently religious in what I am arguing. I'd call it exploratory science.

Now, it does become religious when right-wing American Christian zealots attempt to co-opt the overall notion of teleology to suit their own agenda and desired power structures.

It can often be difficult to tease apart the idea of agency behind the origin of life and the cultural and ideological forces that have co-opted that theme and forced an interpretation on it. Yet I have consistently endeavored to highlight that distinction here -- that the notion of teleology in biological origins is not necessarily religious.

Let's confront the hypothesis of "DNA as an intelligently designed code" in a bit more detail. Upon first learning of the genetic code one could be forgiven for exclaiming, "My God, this couldn't have happened naturally." But then one asks where the DNA came from? From the parents. And where did their DNA come from? From their parents, and so forth back through all the ancestors and finally to when it wasn't even DNA. And how could species ever evolve? DNA copying is imperfect. And how does that not cause extinction of all life? Selection. And so forth with questions of ever broadening scope and answers that lead to an infinite supply of more questions.

Most scientists are familiar with the dangers of extrapolation without independent, supporting data. The question of the origin of the genetic code is a historical one. Conjuring molecular evolutionary fantasias not supported by historical evidence is exactly that -- an exercise in creative imagination, but not particularly a rigorous attempt at answering the question of how the genetic code, as an entity in biological history, actually emerged.

No investigation of a bewildering scientific mystery finds discovery leading toward intelligent agency. What we learn is always in the direction of the natural.

Agency can be perfectly, utterly natural. I'm hardly proposing otherwise.

This is one of the things science gradually learned in the centuries after the Middle Ages, that divine providence (or intelligent agent in modern ID lingo) never turns out to be the answer. It is never argued in modern science, "We've tried and tried to find an answer for this, but we can't find one, so one has to consider a power far greater than ourselves."

There's nothing wrong with considering a "power greater than ourselves." That's an intrinsically anthropocentric ideology; the problem becomes when that "power" is presumed to be some sort of masculine god creature thing.

Actually, engineering life doesn't require technology significantly more advanced than our own. It only requires a few decades of advance in molecular nanotechnology and manufacturing.

IDists will argue, "No no, not a 'power far greater than ourselves,' just an intelligent agent. Intelligent, like we are, that's all." But it's hard to take them at their word - at heart they seek God, not aliens, for there's no answer for the infinite regression. If life here is the result of an intelligence, then where did that intelligence come from?

What makes you think that life on Earth represents the only possible combination of molecules that can be endowed with intelligence? We know, after all, that non-biological systems can possess intelligence (i.e., AI systems, which are becoming increasingly "smarter").

All that is required for evolution to kick-start on a planetary (or other) surface is self-replication with errors. And there are plenty of possible self-replicating systems that could conceivably arise on another planet: systems which would not possess the properties that life on Earth has -- properties that have posed a problem for origin of life models.

Ultimately there had to have been a first intelligence, a god...

That's rather parochial -- even naive -- thinking. Gods and their ilk are hardly needed for non-genetic-code-based evolution to kick-start elsewhere in the universe.

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.

Edited by Genomicus, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 51 by Percy, posted 10-07-2016 1:22 PM Percy has responded

Replies to this message:
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Taq
Member
Posts: 7282
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 53 of 60 (792252)
10-07-2016 2:53 PM
Reply to: Message 50 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 1:15 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
Genomicus writes:

Then why exactly is the molecular biology literature replete with terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines?

You are begging the question. You would first have to show that it is replete with terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines.

Umm, that looks like a sophisticated two-part machine with interlocking modules.

Show me a machine that looks anything like that. I bet you can't do it.

Really? Then tell that to published biologists who extensively use terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines.

Begging the question again.

Edited by Taq, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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Taq
Member
Posts: 7282
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.9


Message 54 of 60 (792253)
10-07-2016 2:56 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 12:54 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
Genomicus writes:

For example, the hypothesis of eukaryotic front-loading explains why core eukaryotic proteins have well-conserved structural and sequence protein homologs in prokaryotes, as opposed to some of these essential proteins having been cobbled together from non-functional stretches of prokaryotic genomes (e.g., pseudogenes).

How does it explain that?


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jar
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Posts: 29799
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 55 of 60 (792271)
10-07-2016 4:31 PM
Reply to: Message 46 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 12:54 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
Genomicus writes:

For example, the hypothesis of eukaryotic front-loading explains why core eukaryotic proteins have well-conserved structural and sequence protein homologs in prokaryotes, as opposed to some of these essential proteins having been cobbled together from non-functional stretches of prokaryotic genomes (e.g., pseudogenes).

HUH?

How is that an explanation of anything more than "turtles all the way"?

Genomicus writes:

Further, specific design hypotheses provide predictions which can then be experimentally tested.

I have seen that claim many times but like the words salad in the former quote, what meaning does that have and why haven't any such tests ever been performed?


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Dr Adequate
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Posts: 15987
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 4.0


Message 56 of 60 (792277)
10-07-2016 4:46 PM
Reply to: Message 47 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 12:57 PM


Eh, not really the point of that quote. The point of that quote is not to explore the nature of scientific publication practices. The point is to highlight how a genetic code was not an expected reality of the non-teleological framework.

Well, if you can actually find me someone who said before the discovery of the ribosome that protein synthesis couldn't happen bit by bit instead of simultaneously, or pushing back against the discoveries as they were made on the grounds that they had to be wrong, and doing so with reference to a "non-telelogical framework", then that would illustrate your point nicely.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 47 by Genomicus, posted 10-07-2016 12:57 PM Genomicus has not yet responded

Percy
Member
Posts: 16335
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 57 of 60 (792310)
10-08-2016 8:12 AM
Reply to: Message 52 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 1:52 PM


Genomicus writes:

There's nothing inherently religious in what I am arguing. I'd call it exploratory science...etc...

All I can say in response is, yes, that's pretty much what one in your position would be expected to argue, making a plea to accept your position as reasonable with no arguments built around evidence, and with no hint of recognition of how the infinite regression your position leads to theological questions of ultimate origins and not to scientific understanding. There is something *very* inherently religious in what you are arguing.

Conjuring molecular evolutionary fantasias not supported by historical evidence is exactly that -- an exercise in creative imagination, but not particularly a rigorous attempt at answering the question of how the genetic code, as an entity in biological history, actually emerged.

Just as the Earth's history is recorded in the rocks, life's history is recorded in the cells. About Earth's history Faith likes to call geological strata "stacks of rocks" as if they contain no evidence of time and process, and you seem to be making a very similar argument about life. "Evidence? What evidence? There's no evidence here, just an 'exercise in creative imagination,' nothing rigorous or scientific at all."

--Percy

PS - Some of your reply indicates a possible misunderstanding, so to clear that up, no one's denying the possibility of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe, maybe even built upon different chemistry (maybe even a nebula a la Fred Hoyle's The Black Cloud). Your argument is different, that life possesses unnatural qualities that require an outside intelligent agency. In your view alien life is not just a possibility but a necessity, else we wouldn't be here. But there's still that annoying infinite regression...

Edited by Percy, : Grammar.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 52 by Genomicus, posted 10-07-2016 1:52 PM Genomicus has not yet responded

  
Percy
Member
Posts: 16335
From: New Hampshire
Joined: 12-23-2000
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 58 of 60 (792312)
10-08-2016 8:31 AM
Reply to: Message 50 by Genomicus
10-07-2016 1:15 PM


Re: Life Looks Engineered
Taq writes:

Does this high resolution look at a protein look designed, or just like a mass of atoms?

Genomicus writes:

Umm, that looks like a sophisticated two-part machine with interlocking modules.

Obviously it does not look like a machine. The image you offerred yourself *does* look machine-like because it was the intended purpose of the drawing to make masses of molecules look machine-like, likely as an aid to understanding. Your image was taken from ATP Synthase:

But two can play this game.

ATP_synthase_UPDATED

That's a machine. Well, it's a machine according to the scientific literature, at least.
...
Really? Then tell that to published biologists who extensively use terminology borrowed from engineering disciplines.

There's only one playing a game. Biologists are not indicating belief in ID when they make such drawings or refer to biological structures as machines. The Earth has an internal heat engine - I wonder how many cylinders it has?

This isn't discussion, this is word games.

--Percy


This message is a reply to:
 Message 50 by Genomicus, posted 10-07-2016 1:15 PM Genomicus has not yet responded

  
Admin
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Posts: 12536
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Message 59 of 60 (792314)
10-08-2016 8:56 AM


Moving This Thread
I only just now noticed this thread is in the Coffee House forum. I'm moving it to the Intelligent Design forum.

--Percy
EvC Forum Director

  
Admin
Director
Posts: 12536
From: EvC Forum
Joined: 06-14-2002
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Message 60 of 60 (792374)
10-08-2016 8:57 AM


Thread Copied to Intelligent Design Forum
Thread copied to the Intelligent Design just a question for evolutionists thread in the Intelligent Design forum, this copy of the thread has been closed.
  
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