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Author Topic:   Probability of Life Arising Calculations
Coragyps
Member
Posts: 5381
From: Snyder, Texas, USA
Joined: 11-12-2002
Member Rating: 8.4


Message 31 of 40 (150981)
10-18-2004 11:42 PM
Reply to: Message 29 by mike the wiz
10-18-2004 8:14 PM


and planets that we have discovered are the only ones available - and so far - all planets inidicate hostile turbulent solar systems

And there is a very strong selection bias at work in the 100+ planets outside our solar system that we have discovered to date. The instruments available now to look for them, and the methods used to look, have been far better able to detect Jupiter-or-bigger, close-to-their-sun planets. And all hundred of them have been found in about a decade now. Give technology another twenty years, Mike - they'll be Earth-size "habitable-zone" planets aplenty.

Finding life a hundred light-years away, though - that may be a tougher nut to crack.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 29 by mike the wiz, posted 10-18-2004 8:14 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 32 by jar, posted 10-18-2004 11:44 PM Coragyps has not yet responded

    
jar
Member
Posts: 30936
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004


Message 32 of 40 (150982)
10-18-2004 11:44 PM
Reply to: Message 31 by Coragyps
10-18-2004 11:42 PM


Finding life a hundred light-years away, though - that may be a tougher nut to crack.

But I with many others are looking for it.


Aslan is not a Tame Lion
This message is a reply to:
 Message 31 by Coragyps, posted 10-18-2004 11:42 PM Coragyps has not yet responded

  
Quetzal
Member (Idle past 3983 days)
Posts: 3228
Joined: 01-09-2002


Message 33 of 40 (151044)
10-19-2004 10:07 AM
Reply to: Message 29 by mike the wiz
10-18-2004 8:14 PM


Hi mike. I want to start by saying I appreciate your attitude - you're one of the rare breed who, in spite of holding contrary opinions, is willing to sort of withhold final judgement pending additional information. I.e., a very reasonable and non-dogmatic stance. Keep it up.

I would, however, like to address your oft-repeated contention concerning "big number" probabilities telling against abiogenesis. There are two fundamental flaws in creationist probability calculations. In the first place, it is a very basic rule of statistical probability that more accurate your initial conditions, the more accurate will be your final probability calculation. The obverse is also true - the less you know about the initial conditions, the less accurate will be your calculation. With abiogenesis, no one has the first clue what the actual initial conditions were - neither creo nor evo. Therefore, by definition, any abiogenesis probability calculation is going to be wrong from the git-go. IOW, creationist big-number probabilities are no more accurate than pulling random numbers out of thin air.

The second major flaw is a whopping unstated assumption that life-as-we-know-it (LAWKI) is the only possible outcome. Since life has a history - even if you limit the change to "variation within a kind" - LAWKI as it exists today is constrained by its history whether you're talking about a cellular process, an organ, or an entire organism. An evo would describe LAWKI as being contingent on its evolutionary trajectory. However, even without buying in to the idea of evolution, it should be clear that living organisms are shaped and molded by their environments. Since most environments are constantly changing, the requirements for life are ALSO constantly changing AND there are multiple possible responses to every change. Even running the same "program" over could (and probably would) yield a different result. Trying to develop a probability bound without knowing exactly what environmental factors may impact the organism over its history AND without knowing every single possible reaction to the factors, is one of the most futile exercises I can imagine.

In short, creo "big number" probabilities are spurious at best. They're wrong at both the beginning assumptions and the end state assumption. Classic "lies, damn lies, and statistics."


This message is a reply to:
 Message 29 by mike the wiz, posted 10-18-2004 8:14 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

  
Loudmouth
Inactive Member


Message 34 of 40 (151092)
10-19-2004 12:41 PM
Reply to: Message 29 by mike the wiz
10-18-2004 8:14 PM


quote:
But we only have life on earth - Saying life could adjust elsewhere because it happens on earth --> Is that valid? It's still surviving - on earth.

It is more valid than claiming "There is life on Earth, therefore it can't exist anywhere else". Also, as I said earlier (and you seemed to agree) natural selection would mold life so that it adapts to Earth. The Earth does not adapt to life.

quote:
Life is only on earth, I suppose I could also say "porridge is only on my plate" -- erm, am I refuting myself here?

I think you are finally seeing the weakness of the "no life anywhere but Earth" argument.

quote:
Good point - but I heard them argue on the program Reasons to believe -- that Mars was just too uninhabitable, and Europa? If it's DNA - you'll know my answer - if it's not, my ass is kicked!

Again, you are being earth-centric. Mars is too uninhabitable for organisms that LIVE ON EARTH. Life could have thrived on Mars millions of years ago when Mars was more habitable. We are even finding evidence that water may have existed on Mars at some point.

quote:
Ofcourse - we can only deal with what can be dealt with - and planets that we have discovered are the only ones available - and so far - all planets inidicate hostile turbulent solar systems - big numbers are given to justify the possibility of an "earth-like" planet, but we haven't found one. Nevertheless, I only find good porridge at my house - but it doesn't mean it doesn't exist at yours - so I'm keeping "insane creo mike" in check.

Just when I was ready to label you a "crackpot creationist" you have to go and write this. Foiled again. I see this as the same argument that agnostics/christians and atheists have. Agnostics say that we may never know if God exists, and an atheist claims that they have never seen proof so no proof exists. We do not have evidence that life exists elsewhere, but this is due to our lack of knowledge and a lack of investigation.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 29 by mike the wiz, posted 10-18-2004 8:14 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

  
mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4656
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 35 of 40 (151322)
10-20-2004 9:52 AM


Wow - Quetzal - welcome back!

Hi mike. I want to start by saying I appreciate your attitude - you're one of the rare breed who, in spite of holding contrary opinions, is willing to sort of withhold final judgement pending additional information. I.e., a very reasonable and non-dogmatic stance. Keep it up.

Oh thanks I try my best - and hope I can live up to those comments - I guess everyone tries to be objective as they can - while preaching the truth of bibleGod.

Quetzal writes:

The second major flaw is a whopping unstated assumption that life-as-we-know-it (LAWKI) is the only possible outcome. Since life has a history - even if you limit the change to "variation within a kind" - LAWKI as it exists today is constrained by its history whether you're talking about a cellular process, an organ, or an entire organism. An evo would describe LAWKI as being contingent on its evolutionary trajectory. However, even without buying in to the idea of evolution, it should be clear that living organisms are shaped and molded by their environments.

Yes - I agree that living organisms are able to adapt to their environment. I guess LAWKI is argued as the "only life".

However - I admitt that it's an inductive argument, because it's exactly the same as saying;

I have counted 4 billion socks

And so - there are 4 billion socks in existence

Ofcourse - Have I access to all socks (life) - No, I only have access to the socks I've counted. So logically, I admitt it is a speculative topic. - And not deductive.

All in all I enjoyed your post and can understand what you are saying.

Queetzal writes:

In short, creo "big number" probabilities are spurious at best. They're wrong at both the beginning assumptions and the end state assumption. Classic "lies, damn lies, and statistics."

Okay - I understand why you say this - personally, I'm now an open gate at the moment. ofcourse - if there's 4 billion socks - is everyone wearing one sock?

Anyhow - I can see that statistics are dubious - but u have to understand, I was dragged over here to defend a statistic, which I atleast tried to do - but in the other thread, no one was expected to defend their statistics. So my conclusion is that statistics can only be so useful, and I suggest my conclusion is reasonable by default. THAT is my conclusion on all of them.

Loudmouth writes:

It is more valid than claiming "There is life on Earth, therefore it can't exist anywhere else". Also, as I said earlier (and you seemed to agree) natural selection would mold life so that it adapts to Earth. The Earth does not adapt to life.

Okay - I agree the earth doesn't adapt to life - but I am not saying it does - but rather, it has been fine-tuned for the arrival of life.

Loudmouth writes:

I think you are finally seeing the weakness of the "no life anywhere but Earth" argument.

Yes - I was never sure about that though. You see, by chance it may not be teaming with life - but by design?

Anyway - I don't dismiss that the universe is big, and that God might have bigger fish to fry.

Loudmouth writes:

Again, you are being earth-centric. Mars is too uninhabitable for organisms that LIVE ON EARTH. Life could have thrived on Mars millions of years ago when Mars was more habitable. We are even finding evidence that water may have existed on Mars at some point.

Okay - you win that point highlighted, because I said " But we only have life on earth - Saying life could adjust elsewhere because it happens on earth --> Is that valid? It's still surviving - on earth. "

While life adapting elsewhere based on life adapting on earth is still life adapting on earth - you are corect to point out that life - despite us only knowing it on earth - could survive elsewhere - and be very different in nature.

Loudmouth writes:

Agnostics say that we may never know if God exists, and an atheist claims that they have never seen proof so no proof exists. We do not have evidence that life exists elsewhere, but this is due to our lack of knowledge and a lack of investigation.

Looking at this entirely logically - with no mike involvement - I guess the difference might be that an atheist might say that we have one example of life, evidenced and known - whereas they cannot find a proof of God. So - quite historically, I'm going to defend atheists - and say that they can validly suggest there is life elsewhere (and I am indifferent) - because they have one absolutely certain - proof of life.

BTW - are you atheist or agnostic L? I forget.

This message has been edited by mike the wiz, 10-20-2004 08:54 AM


Replies to this message:
 Message 36 by nator, posted 10-20-2004 10:42 AM mike the wiz has not yet responded
 Message 37 by Amlodhi, posted 10-20-2004 11:03 AM mike the wiz has responded

  
nator
Member (Idle past 281 days)
Posts: 12961
From: Ann Arbor
Joined: 12-09-2001


Message 36 of 40 (151332)
10-20-2004 10:42 AM
Reply to: Message 35 by mike the wiz
10-20-2004 9:52 AM


What assertions, in particular, did you want me to support, Mike?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by mike the wiz, posted 10-20-2004 9:52 AM mike the wiz has not yet responded

    
Amlodhi
Inactive Member


Message 37 of 40 (151339)
10-20-2004 11:03 AM
Reply to: Message 35 by mike the wiz
10-20-2004 9:52 AM


quote:
Originally posted by mike the wiz

. . . in the other thread, no one was expected to defend their statistics.


Hi mike the wiz,

I have hesitated to interject into this thread because my original premise is actually off topic here. But I don't want you to think that I'm avoiding anything either; so:

My original statement in the other thread had nothing to do with the statistical probability of life elsewhere in the universe.

The statistical probability that there is life on earth is 100% regardless of how it got here.

Until documented numbers prove otherwise, I contend that disasters, accidents, illness, ad infinitum, are spread across the demographic spectrum (i.e. Christian, Muslim, Atheist, etc.) in a random pattern.

As such, the observation is that we live in an indifferent universe (or, at the very least, an indifferent world).

Thus, again, the one to one correspondence is that we do indeed live in an indifferent universe/world.

Whereas the theist is required to add on various rationalizations to explain why a God created inhabited world appears to follow only the laws of chaos and indifference.

Amlodhi


This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by mike the wiz, posted 10-20-2004 9:52 AM mike the wiz has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 38 by mike the wiz, posted 10-20-2004 1:01 PM Amlodhi has not yet responded

  
mike the wiz
Member
Posts: 4656
From: u.k
Joined: 05-24-2003


Message 38 of 40 (151365)
10-20-2004 1:01 PM
Reply to: Message 37 by Amlodhi
10-20-2004 11:03 AM


Hi Amlodhi

My original statement in the other thread had nothing to do with the statistical probability of life elsewhere in the universe.

- I know Amlodhi - I amnot accusing you of it. What I am saying is that you started with your statistic - this thing, but I am not against you for mentioning your statistic assertion in message #172 - all I am saying is that I AM the one who has been persistently pursued, when infact you started to assert statistics, and then Dan got on the train - ut why does mike - when he asserts a statistic - have to put up??? Can you see my point? Again - I am not interested in blaming you individually for anything - I just want fair game.

From message #172 you said " The point is that, statistically, it appears that we live in an indifferent universe ".

As such, the observation is that we live in an indifferent universe (or, at the very least, an indifferent world).

Thus, again, the one to one correspondence is that we do indeed live in an indifferent universe/world.

You then go on to say how a theistic position;

Whereas the theist is required to add on various rationalizations to explain why a God created inhabited world appears to follow only the laws of chaos and indifference.

BUT --> mike is saying that even if the universe is indifferent - that doesn't mean God is;

A. My position - God is not indifferent.
B. You have claimed that the universe is indifferent, and so God is.

You are now saying that we have to explain, but infact arguing position B doesn't refute my actual position - which is A, that God is indifferent,

So - I never said that the universe either is/is not indifferent - I preached that Christ is good - and does care (position A).

Example;

1. Barry says football is fun
2. dudeguy says that football grounds are boring

Dudeguy says that football must be boring.

But the world being indifferent - won't not favour God - Christ said "If the world hates me" - WHAT? The world hate God?

Now Christ also cast out apparent indifferent diseases. Maybe the disease is indifferent, but is satan?

And so if Christ is not consistent with the "world" and it's indifference (by him casting out worldly diseases) - can you see that it is a reasonable position - when I say that God is not indifferent? I hope you can.

Edited out my accusation against sweetie pie Shraff, and replaced it with evil boy Dan.

Regards, mike.

This message has been edited by mike the wiz, 10-20-2004 12:10 PM


This message is a reply to:
 Message 37 by Amlodhi, posted 10-20-2004 11:03 AM Amlodhi has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 39 by AdminHambre, posted 10-20-2004 1:33 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded
 Message 40 by Dan Carroll, posted 10-20-2004 1:42 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

  
AdminHambre
Inactive Member


Message 39 of 40 (151376)
10-20-2004 1:33 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by mike the wiz
10-20-2004 1:01 PM


God Overload
Mike,

This is the "Is It Science?" forum, and all the Christ-talk is pretty irrelevant. I think the point being made is that rationalizations don't compensate for consistent application of logic and probability. Please pursue the debate from that perspective.

Adminíssimo Hambre


This message is a reply to:
 Message 38 by mike the wiz, posted 10-20-2004 1:01 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

  
Dan Carroll
Inactive Member


Message 40 of 40 (151382)
10-20-2004 1:42 PM
Reply to: Message 38 by mike the wiz
10-20-2004 1:01 PM


Edited out my accusation against sweetie pie Shraff, and replaced it with evil boy Dan.

I'm not sure why. To my knowledge, I've never refused to back up an assertion when you've asked me to do so. If I'm wrong, go right ahead and point out where. I'm happy to make good on it.

In the meantime, you just sound like a kid who got caught stealing a cookie before dinner, whose only response was to whine, "but... but... Amlodhi got to have a cookie! It's not fair!"

Well, I don't care what Amlodhi's mom lets him do. You shouldn't be stealing cookies.

This message has been edited by Dan Carroll, 10-20-2004 12:45 PM


"If I had to write ten jokes about potholders, I don't think I could do it. But I could write ten jokes about Catholicism in the next twenty minutes. I guess I'm drawn to religion because I can be provocative without harming something people really care about, like their cars."
-George Meyer, Simpsons writer
This message is a reply to:
 Message 38 by mike the wiz, posted 10-20-2004 1:01 PM mike the wiz has not yet responded

  
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