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Author Topic:   The Common Ancestor?
Otto Tellick
Member (Idle past 558 days)
Posts: 288
From: PA, USA
Joined: 02-17-2008


Message 166 of 341 (587236)
10-17-2010 10:00 PM
Reply to: Message 162 by barbara
10-17-2010 10:50 AM


Re: Information rides again
barbara writes:

Science creates the dialect used in terminology and obviously have the power to change or alter the definition as they see fit whenever they want to.

Right. This is an indispensable feature of scientific discourse. A lot of explanation in science has to deal with things and ideas that are being explained for the first time, and to discuss new things and ideas coherently, you must either invent new words, or use existing words in "specialized" ways. (A common strategy in biology is to use various kinds of abbreviations for phrasal expressions.)

An equally indispensable feature of this kind of usage is that the person who is doing the explaining always provides the specific definition for the specialized terms that are needed in a given discussion; you'll always see statements near the beginning of an article, lecture or book chapter like: "In what follows, I use the term ... to mean..."; "For purposes of this discussion, we introduce the term ... to mean..."; and similar expressions.

When it's done correctly, the specialized terms are always defined with reference to objective observables, or to unambiguous logical distinctions, so that the audience (readers or listeners) can reasonably confirm that they correctly understand the intended meaning of the writer/speaker, and these kinds of "ad hoc" meaning/usage are strictly adhered to throughout the discussion. (When it's not done correctly, peer review can be counted on to spot the errors, and will not fail to expose them.)


autotelic adj. (of an entity or event) having within itself the purpose of its existence or happening.
This message is a reply to:
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barbara
Member (Idle past 3029 days)
Posts: 167
Joined: 07-19-2010


Message 167 of 341 (587299)
10-18-2010 9:53 AM
Reply to: Message 153 by NoNukes
10-16-2010 10:55 AM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
If you are given samples of DNA from 4 different critters without telling what those critters were, how would you determine what they are?
This message is a reply to:
 Message 153 by NoNukes, posted 10-16-2010 10:55 AM NoNukes has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
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Wounded King
Member (Idle past 2322 days)
Posts: 4149
From: Edinburgh, Scotland
Joined: 04-09-2003


Message 168 of 341 (587308)
10-18-2010 10:32 AM
Reply to: Message 167 by barbara
10-18-2010 9:53 AM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
Partly this depends if you mean actual DNA or DNA sequences, either way the main methodology would be the same but you would need to sequence the actual DNA first.

Then put those sequences into the BLAST program at NCBI that would find matching DNA sequences if they were in the genbank database. You could also run it against sequenced proteins in case the genes weren't present in the database.

Even if an exact match for your sequence didn't come up the chances are it would identify homologues from several other species, and the similarity of those matches would start to give you some indication of what sort of animal you were looking for.

*ABE*One caveat is that this approach depends rather on what type of DNA you have, if it is protein coding your chances are better for making an ID than if it is some homogenous string of dinucleotide repeats.*/ABE*

TTFN,

WK

Edited by Wounded King, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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Coragyps
Member
Posts: 5398
From: Snyder, Texas, USA
Joined: 11-12-2002


Message 169 of 341 (587310)
10-18-2010 10:40 AM
Reply to: Message 167 by barbara
10-18-2010 9:53 AM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
You could sequence the samples and compare the genes (and non-gene portions) to published sequences of various critters. If you found genes coding for, say, hemoglobin, you would know that that sample wasn't from a elm tree or a Pseudomonas, but I think you would need an actual library of sequences to get down to the Family or Genus level of identification.
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Strongbow
Junior Member (Idle past 3137 days)
Posts: 26
Joined: 09-16-2010


Message 170 of 341 (587342)
10-18-2010 1:25 PM
Reply to: Message 160 by Dr Jack
10-16-2010 5:00 PM


Re: Information rides again
Mr Jack writes:

I think it's silly to say that a gene does not contain the information for coding a protein. Equally it's silly to think that kind of information is quantifiable.
The only reason I can see for denying that the section of DNA that codes for a protein contains the information for that protein is the nonsense and equivocation we've had to put up with from Creo's regarding the information issue. I think it is a very sad day for science when we retreat for using perfectly sensible terminology for that reason.

I think it's silly to say that a gene does not contain the information for coding a protein. Equally it's silly to think that kind of information is quantifiable.
The only reason I can see for denying that the section of DNA that codes for a protein contains the information for that protein is the nonsense and equivocation we've had to put up with from Creo's regarding the information issue. I think it is a very sad day for science when we retreat for using perfectly sensible terminology for that reason.

I agree.. what we need to get across is that the infromation in DNA is intrinsic to the chemistry of the molecule itself, rather than abstract. With computer code, we can map the symbols to functions of a processor in what fashion we want. As long as the programmer and the processor designer are using the same assumptions, the abstract relationship itself doesn't matter. With DNA, and chemsitry in general, the meaning is instrinsic to the molecule. If Gene A codes fro Proteins W and X, it cannot be redefined as coding for Protiens Y and Z. The chemsitry just doesn't work.

Abstract information is the prduct of an intelligent agent. Intrinsic information might be, or might not.

Edited by Strongbow, : No reason given.


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barbara
Member (Idle past 3029 days)
Posts: 167
Joined: 07-19-2010


Message 171 of 341 (587350)
10-18-2010 1:47 PM
Reply to: Message 168 by Wounded King
10-18-2010 10:32 AM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
Okay let me ask this another way. What do you need beside a DNA sample to identify 4 different critters in a blind study?

Nij writes in another topic:

Mind is an abstract entity

Strongbow writes here:

Abstract information is the product of an intelligent agent

If life does not equate to abstract then why does one think that humans are the exception?

Either there is no intelligent factor involved or there is, you can't have it both ways.

Edited by barbara, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
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Taq
Member
Posts: 7997
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.8


Message 172 of 341 (587365)
10-18-2010 3:06 PM
Reply to: Message 150 by frako
10-16-2010 5:47 AM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
If this where true, transfering Jellyfish Genes, the ones that make them glow in the dark, to rats would not make rats glow in the dark. Guess what they made fluorescent rats, so gens hold information.

If you fed rats methanol and exposed them to light they would go blind. Does this mean that methanol carries the information for blindness?


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Taq
Member
Posts: 7997
Joined: 03-06-2009
Member Rating: 3.8


(1)
Message 173 of 341 (587366)
10-18-2010 3:09 PM
Reply to: Message 171 by barbara
10-18-2010 1:47 PM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
If life does not equate to abstract then why does one think that humans are the exception?

DNA is not an abstraction. If we replaced the DNA molecule with a very tiny piece of ticker tape with letters typed on it we would no longer have a viable cell. However, with abstract human language we can change the physical state of the letters in any medium and still convey the same abstract information.

For DNA it is the chemistry that matters. This is not so with abstract information created by intelligent species like our species.


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Nij
Member (Idle past 3117 days)
Posts: 239
From: New Zealand
Joined: 08-20-2010


Message 174 of 341 (587461)
10-18-2010 10:04 PM
Reply to: Message 171 by barbara
10-18-2010 1:47 PM


Re: Time Tree : : Timescale of Life
You may want to include the rest of my statement:

The mind is an abstract entity we use to label the sum of the physical and chemical interactions within the brain.

So one can easily consider the mind to be an intrinsic entity as well, depending on how it is being considered. There is the mind as a real set of objects and events, and then there is the mind as an abstract idea.

There really isn't an argument there. Nowhere is it stated by either of us that the general property of being alive gave rise to the abstractness; it is the property of having an intelligent mind which gives rise to that abstractness, because the "real" mind results in that intelligence and that intelligence creates the idea of the mind.

So we are not "having it both ways". It is our own human intelligence that created the abstract mind, not some fancy space-fairy.

Edited by Nij, : Correct quote.
Fix wording to something less gibberishy.


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Wounded King
Member (Idle past 2322 days)
Posts: 4149
From: Edinburgh, Scotland
Joined: 04-09-2003


(1)
Message 175 of 341 (587506)
10-19-2010 8:02 AM
Reply to: Message 171 by barbara
10-18-2010 1:47 PM


Beginning to lose the point
If life does not equate to abstract then why does one think that humans are the exception?

I certainly wouldn't claim that humans were an exception. I don't think there is any compelling evidence that we display any exceptional unique trait that isn't present in some degree in our primate relatives, including intelligence, tool use, communication, theory of mind etc ....

I'm not sure what contradiction you saw in Nij and Strongbow's statements.

Either there is no intelligent factor involved or there is, you can't have it both ways.

There is compelling evidence for a role for intelligent agency in the design of human made constructs, we have extensive experience of human design approaches and people who can explain their design rationale. We have no such evidence for any such role for intelligent agency in the genomes of living organisms. The mechanisms we do know of which effect changes on such genomes are naturalistic and stochastic.

Why can't it be one of both ways in different situations?

TTFN,

WK


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barbara
Member (Idle past 3029 days)
Posts: 167
Joined: 07-19-2010


Message 176 of 341 (588158)
10-22-2010 1:57 PM
Reply to: Message 42 by Jon
09-27-2010 12:05 PM


Re: Definitions & Feel-good Science
Lions and tigers in nature live in different environments. Humans created an environment for these two to mate. You almost have leave out any species that we had a affect on to get an accurate picture of the past, but would there be any left to help solve it?

Humans have altered global landscapes which alter ecosystems which affect changes to occur in species. Everything we touch or come in contact with we create cause and affect in other life forms.


This message is a reply to:
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DMJY510
Junior Member (Idle past 2971 days)
Posts: 3
Joined: 04-01-2011


Message 177 of 341 (610813)
04-02-2011 3:53 AM


yes,I believe it ,do you think human beings have something in common with apps.

Edited by AdminModulous, : No reason given.


I like whale snot
    
Crazynutsx
Junior Member (Idle past 2418 days)
Posts: 11
From: United Kingdom
Joined: 05-19-2011


Message 178 of 341 (619953)
06-13-2011 1:41 PM


proof
you cant prove a fossil had any kids, so you can not prove evolution
Replies to this message:
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New Cat's Eye
Inactive Member


(1)
Message 179 of 341 (619955)
06-13-2011 1:47 PM
Reply to: Message 178 by Crazynutsx
06-13-2011 1:41 PM


Re: proof
you cant prove a fossil had any kids, so you can not prove evolution


This message is a reply to:
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Panda
Member (Idle past 1940 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 180 of 341 (620013)
06-13-2011 6:51 PM
Reply to: Message 178 by Crazynutsx
06-13-2011 1:41 PM


Re: proof
Crazynutsx writes:

you cant prove a fossil had any kids, so you can not prove evolution


I once tried to get two fossils to breed, but it was like getting spunk from a stone.

(Sorry everyone. It was the best I could think of.
Hopefully it will point CN towards his mistake.)

Edited by Panda, : apology.


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