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Author Topic:   Is ID falsifiable by any kind of experiment?
Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 9 of 507 (899055)
10-07-2022 8:58 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by evolujtion_noob
09-27-2022 7:55 AM

evolujtion_noob writes:
Michael Behe claims that if Lenski's experiment on e-coli produced some novel function, that would disprove ID.
First, where did Behe say this? Can you provide a quote or reference?
Second, perhaps it would be better to actually wait for such a novel function to be produced and understood before trying to discuss the demise of ID. As of yet, it still hasn't occurred.
Why couldn't the ID proponent just claim that the designer guided the experiment psychically?
Because ID wouldn't comment on such a manner of guidance. Instead, it would take a look at what has been observed and evaluate any changes via scientific and analytical methods, just as Behe has already done on reported changes in Lenski's experiment.
On theoretical grounds, the ID proponent could claim, "this couldn't have happened with mutation and natural selection. There was an infusion of information from somewhere."
That is somewhat an unusual statement for an ID proponent to make unless they had already evaluated and presented evidence backing up such a statement. And it wouldnt be claimed on theoretical grounds, but instead on observational/scientific grounds.
How can we rule out the activity of a designer when there are no limits on how this designer operates?
It seems to me for ID to be falsifiable, there was to be some type of mechanism/limits for how the designer operates.
The question is somewhat backwards, as an ID proponent would rule out chance/necessity even before considering design. Nonetheless, for ID there are limits as to how a designer would operate.
I think you might be confused as to what ID constitutes, as well as what criteria would qualify as something falling under design.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by evolujtion_noob, posted 09-27-2022 7:55 AM evolujtion_noob has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by AZPaul3, posted 10-07-2022 9:36 PM WookieeB has replied
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 Message 12 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-09-2022 6:43 PM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 15 of 507 (899253)
10-11-2022 3:46 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by AZPaul3
10-07-2022 9:36 PM

Re: ID About to Fail?
AZPaul3 writes:
What constitutes ID?
The theory of intelligent design (ID) holds that certain features of the universe and of living things are best explained by an intelligent cause rather than an undirected process such as natural selection.
What criteria would qualify as something falling under design?
A purposeful arrangement of parts.
But you knew all that already.
We have been waiting for the definitive tests of ID's claims for decades. It's about time.
Then you haven't been paying attention. 1) If an undirected process could be shown to be able to produce the specified complexity (ie, functional arrangement of parts, specified information), then that would falsify ID's claims. As of yet, it hasn't been done. Lenski's experiment would probably be the best yet modern attempt, since it has run 75,000 generations or so (equating to what would be about 2 million years of human development), but even there nothing novel has appeared. 2) By tests that are done intuitively by just about everyone every day, in that when encountering some system that demonstrates specified complexity and when we can determine the origin of it, in our uniform and repeated experience a mind is always behind it.

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 Message 10 by AZPaul3, posted 10-07-2022 9:36 PM AZPaul3 has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 20 by ringo, posted 10-11-2022 12:28 PM WookieeB has replied
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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 16 of 507 (899255)
10-11-2022 3:48 AM
Reply to: Message 12 by evolujtion_noob
10-09-2022 6:43 PM

evolujtion_noob writes:
In this video at 38:24...
Thanks. At that point, Behe was really responding to a question regarding what predictions ID makes. But the gist of your statement is still true.
What are these limits and have they been stated?
I'm not saying that a designer, especially considering if it is a supernatural designer, would necessarily have limits as to what they might do, but for ID to be able to infer anything, there would have to be a quality of the operation that is recognizable by design principles. In the recording you linked, Behe gave a good example of what this might look like (at around timestamp 13:25). He mentioned a murderer that is so careful that when he kills his victim, no investigator could distinguish it from an accident. In that case, even though it definitely was a designed event, ID would not be able to infer it. But if there were about 10 murders committed in the same manner, and it turned out that all the victims were scheduled to testify as witnesses at a criminal's drug trial, ID could make a determination it was design because a purpose behind the activity was detectable.
So the limits of a designer in order for ID to be able to make a inference would be the evidence of purpose.
I haven't seen anyone giving any parameters/mechanism for how the designer operates
ID doesn't have to define the parameters/mechanism for how a (not "the") designer operates. If there is no likely, undirected cause that can be demonstrated to produce the particular effect AND (not OR) it exhibits a purposeful arrangement of parts/settings (which in our uniform experience always leads back to a mind), then design can be inferred.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 12 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-09-2022 6:43 PM evolujtion_noob has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 18 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-11-2022 4:37 AM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 25 of 507 (899315)
10-11-2022 9:55 PM
Reply to: Message 20 by ringo
10-11-2022 12:28 PM

Re: ID About to Fail?
LOL, how?
Now you need to define what "purposeful" means
1) having intention or objective
2) conforms to an independently describable pattern and whose arrangement is of a sufficiently low probability.
and how you would distinguish purposeful from purposeless.
For the latter, i suppose not conforming to the description above.
What is the purpose of a mountain?
Well, it would depend on the context, but generally I would say: none.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 20 by ringo, posted 10-11-2022 12:28 PM ringo has replied

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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 26 of 507 (899316)
10-11-2022 9:59 PM
Reply to: Message 18 by evolujtion_noob
10-11-2022 4:37 AM

So if something is repeatable by experiment... and not directed by the experimenter... would you rule out a mind directing the experiment?
Assuming there is not some detectable mind other than the experimenter's , umm... Yes.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 18 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-11-2022 4:37 AM evolujtion_noob has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 28 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-11-2022 10:35 PM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 29 of 507 (899325)
10-11-2022 11:13 PM
Reply to: Message 27 by ringo
10-11-2022 10:19 PM

Re: ID About to Fail?
You define a vague concept, "design", with another vague concept, "purpose".
Vague doesn't mean circular, nor is it a synonym. So even if my answer was vague, it wasnt 'circular' Besides, 'circular', in the context of what I think you mean, would only apply to an argument. I wasnt making an argument, merely presenting a description/definition, which was what was asked.
And whether or not my answer was vague is irrelevant. There was no demand for additional rigor in an answer based on the question.
So you're defining purposeless as not purposeful. That's a little thin, isn't it?
Really? You asked for definitions. I gave you definitions. You dont like mine? Fine.
purpose noun
1 a: something set up as an object or end to be attained : INTENTION
2: a subject under discussion or an action in course of execution
purposeful adjective
1: having a purpose: such as
purposeless adjective
: having no purpose : AIMLESS, MEANINGLESS
Those are from Webster. If you dont like those definitions, go complain to him.
How, specifically, do you decide that A is purposeful and B is purposeless?
Observe; gather data; analyze the item/event. Estimate the relative likelyhood (probability) of the particular arrangement AND identify if it corresponds to some independent pattern. If both the probability is low and there is a pattern detected, then we can infer purpose. If neither of those criteria is fulfilled, then we would not infer purpose.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 27 by ringo, posted 10-11-2022 10:19 PM ringo has replied

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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 30 of 507 (899328)
10-12-2022 12:26 AM
Reply to: Message 28 by evolujtion_noob
10-11-2022 10:35 PM

Ok. That's interesting to me. So you don't take the results of the experiment itself as evidence of a mind.
It really depends on what the experiment is. But if going off of your criteria, you would be correct. I will unpack this a little more...
You asked: "So if something is repeatable by experiment... and not directed by the experimenter... would you rule out a mind directing the experiment?" First off, it is an oddly formed question. An "experiment" is a purposeful thing, being put together by an "experimenter" which would minimally be directed via a mind. So right off the bat we are dealing with a designed system.
But then you say it is "not directed by the experimenter". That seems contradictory to your premise. At the very least, whatever results come about, they are constrained by the experiment, which itself is designed. So in a macro sense, by design, yes the results are being directed.
But then I considered you might be referring to a more restricted context, of looking only at the processes occurring within the experiment. That is really the only way it could be "not directed by the experimenter". So the setup could be a designed scenario, but it may contain a processes that are undirected within the setup. If that is the case, and there is no further purposeful interference by the experimenter or any other mind, then yes, I would 'rule out a mind directing the experiment'. But please realize this would only be in a restricted viewpoint.
As an example, suppose an experimenter setup a test of fairly rolling a 6-sided die ten times and recording the results. The fact that a die is present and will be rolled a number of times is a designed scenario, so the experiment itself is a designed/directed thing, and that there will be 10 recorded rolls is by design. But the actual rolling of the die, if done fairly, would have results that were not directed. In other words, what numbers came up on each die roll would be random/undirected. So the results (what was rolled), within the context of a directed scenario, would not be due to someone directing them.
So I think you posted this before, but for you there are 2 reasons for leaning towards ID. If either one were false, then you wouldn't be in favor of ID?

1. Known mechanisms don't explain the complexity of life.
2. There are no repeatable undirected experiments showing this complexity arise.
No, sorry, that wasn't me that said those things. And neither are they ID concepts.
As to (1), actions of an intelligent agent would fall under "known mechanisms". And of course ID infers that life is a result of the activity of a mind.
For (2), the phrasing is unclear. What do you mean by "repeatable undirected experiments". If it is the same thing as referred to in your question in Message 26, then see above - which would mean the experiment itself is designed, but it uses processes that are undirected within that experiment. Lenski's LTEE might qualify depending on what aspects are considered.
So if we could have repeatable experiments showing this complexity arise... even if we don't know the mechanism, you'd still rule out a designer...
The "this complexity arise" of your statement is the results of the experiment, and I can only assume it refers back to what you called "the complexity of life". But then you are throwing out another concept here, that of "we don't know the mechanism". Us not 'knowing the mechanism' I don't think would ever be the case. We should be able to figure out the mechanism, after all the experiment was setup around whatever mechanism's are taking place.
But, if an experiment was designed with nothing at the beginning that was in a state of something akin to "the complexity of life", but then through undirected processes within that experiment results occur that are something akin to "the complexity of life", then yes, I would rule out a designer for those results. wouldn't resort to the reasoning... "the only known mechanism for this happening is intelligence" ?
No, I wouldn't. But it also would not be something where anyone would say "we don't know the mechanism". The mechanism should be apprehensible and explainable.

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 Message 28 by evolujtion_noob, posted 10-11-2022 10:35 PM evolujtion_noob has not replied

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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 32 of 507 (900207)
10-25-2022 3:54 AM
Reply to: Message 31 by ringo
10-12-2022 3:39 PM

Re: ID About to Fail?
Vague to vague to vague is circular.
You have a problem with definitions.
In no dictionary or thesaurus is vague connected to circular.
So stop weaseling and be rigorous NOW. Define "design" and "purpose" with all the rigor that you can muster.
Tsk, tsk. There is no obligation to explain more than is asked.
Design - purpose, planning, or intention that exists or is thought to exist behind an action, fact, or material object.
See there..."purpose" is used as part of the definition. So if you need to know what "purpose" is, look behind.
If you dont like that, then you have a problem with definitions. You want more variety, you can google the words yourself.
I don't like your copypasta either. If you want to promote Intelligent Design, you need to show that you understand the definitions. You have given no such indication.
My definitions for those words are sufficient. They apply equally to a discussion in ID as they do in any other discussion using those words. It is not my problem that....
You have a problem with definitions.
How, specifically, do you decide that A is purposeful and B is purposeless?
Observe; gather data; analyze the item/event. Estimate the relative likelyhood (probability) of the particular arrangement AND identify if it corresponds to some independent pattern.
How do you do that? Probability is math. Show us your calculations.
Some cases give you a good level of precision to probability. Other things you may not be able to be so precise, but you can usually provide a conservative rough estimate . And more often than not, you are dealing with multiple probabilities that coincide and depend on each other and when considered all (or most) of them together, they will usually push probabilities beyond a reasonable chance.
For instance, in your inquiry, I actually would infer that both A and B are purposeful. From your first question, you are referring to A and B as items where we do not know their origin. So they could be either there by undirected (not design) or directed (design) menthods.
First the precision probabilities. "A" and "B" both correspond to an independent pattern distinct from the question - that pattern being the English alphabet. They are also both the first and second characters of the alphabet, both showing as uppercase letters, and they are displayed per a possible search space of the UTF-8 (1 byte only which handles all the ASCII characters) encoding on the EvC forums. So these are 2x very specific entries from a 128 character list, which would be a probability of 1 in (128^2), which works out to 6.10 x 10^-5. (Based upon the rules, I could have defaulted to all of the UTF-8 available codepoints, which is what the website is encoded with, and allows 1,112,064 'valid' character codes (and feasibly up to over 2 million if allowing for the invalid codes).
That is probably the only hard numbers that can be identified, but all the other probabilities would be prohibitively low.
What could cause a random keyboard stroke? Perhaps an odd power surge, or maybe a cat walking across the keyboard, or debris falling from a fragile ceiling, or ...? I doubt there are any stats on cat-keyboard walkers or frequency of ceilings dropping debris but I would bet they are very low.
I thought there might be stats on the frequency of power surges in the USA, but I could not find much of anything. Someone had a throw away line that some in some ‘rare’ cases people get a surge a dozen or so times a day. For those special cases, that would work out to 1 surge every 1389 seconds. Of course, that would have to coincide precisely at the point in your message where you would be typing and left a moment for a random “A” or “B” Again, that would be about a probability of 2.3 x 10^5.
For this possible route, combining everything so far, we are pushing the ‘one chance in a trillion and still haven't considered a host of other factors (would a power surge actually cause a keystroke? Power surges are shorter than a second? Likelihood it just happened to occur in the proximity of the typing of a post (a wholly design event) that just so happened to have a contextually open hole, and many more.
So while exploring for numbers to plug into some of these questions is fun (and tedious), it is really not necessary. Common sense much more likely points to them being purposeful entries.
Ya, so “A” and “B” are both purposeful.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 31 by ringo, posted 10-12-2022 3:39 PM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 33 by ringo, posted 10-25-2022 1:04 PM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 34 of 507 (900261)
10-25-2022 8:48 PM
Reply to: Message 33 by ringo
10-25-2022 1:04 PM

Re: ID About to Fail?
ringo writes:
I asked you to to be rigorous: "Define "design" and "purpose" with all the rigor that you can muster."
DESIGN definition
Webster definition
Cambridge dictionary definition
Longman dictionary definition
Here are a number of other synonyms for "Design" that could be used in most contexts:
architecture, arrangement, composition, construction, drawing, form, idea, layout, map, method, model, pattern, picture, plan, scheme, study, blueprint, chart, comp, conception, constitution, delineation, depiction, diagram, doodle, dummy, formation, makeup, outline, paste-up, perspective, tracery, tracing, treatment
PURPOSE definition
Webster definition
Cambridge dictionary definition
Longman dictionary definition
Synonyms for "Purpose":
ambition, aspiration, desire, determination, direction, function, goal, idea, intent, objective, plan, principle, project, reason, scheme, scope, target, view, wish, animus, design, destination, end, expectation, hope, mission, object, point, premeditation, proposal, proposition, prospect, resolve, will, big idea, intendment, ulterior motive, whatfor, where one's headed, whole idea, why and wherefore, whyfor
Enough rigor?
And you think that isn't circular?
Define circular.
Not even close. If you're trying to overturn all of science and replace it with voodoo, you need to convince US that you know something.
I never said I was trying to overturn science. You asked for a definition - that's all. I gave you many definitions, that's all. You didn't like my definitions, so I gave you more. Now at this point, if you still don't like it, you are either lazy, too stupid to understand basic language, or are incapable of being clear in your requests.
I asked, "How, specifically, do you decide that A is purposeful and B is purposeless?" What does your calculation tell us about purpose?
You don't seem to be paying attention. I think someone should wave a hand over your head.
"A" and "B" seem to be purposeful. Both 'terms' correspond to multiple patterns independent of any mechanistic process that causes characters to appear on the screen in this forum. Some of those patterns would be the English alphabet and the idioms of language.
Now, how likely are "A" and "B" going to appear in the environment that they did totally by a random, undirected, purposeless, not-designed method? Not very likely at all. For one, we don't normally see such events occurring, so that is going to make it unlikely. Can I put a specific number on that? No. But since I visit many online forums of many different subjects pretty much every day in some fashion, and I have never heard anyone complain of purposeless characters/terms popping up in their postings, though it might be possible, it strikes me as extremely unlikely that it happens. But if I had to come up with a number, I guess I could go do a character count on all the postings of all the forums that I have ever been on in the last year, calculate a probability of maybe a couple events in the space of a hundred million range (minimum 350.000 characters daily). And that is just the likely hood of it happening somewhere (though not important where) in the last year.
In the case of your "A" and "B", we are talking about a more directed and meaningful location. I already broke down some of the probabilities (being as conservative as I could in the space of possibilities) and already was hitting probabilities in the 1 in 10^15 range, and we had barely scratched the surface. So, for a purposeless chance of something at minimum 1 in a couple trillion (and not even adding in the above paragraph), AND considering you referenced the possible-purposeless-entry at least 3 times without blinking (further indicating it actually was a purposeful entry), it meets the criteria to be 1)unlikely, and 2) matching an independent patter. That is 'how I, specifically, would decide that A and B are purposeful'.
Oh, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. If you talk about probabilities, you need to provide numbers. Solid numbers.
But you don't, not always.
If you are willing, describe or name 5 things that are in the room where you are reading this post

This message is a reply to:
 Message 33 by ringo, posted 10-25-2022 1:04 PM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 35 by dwise1, posted 10-26-2022 12:22 AM WookieeB has replied
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Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 40 of 507 (901211)
11-06-2022 1:32 AM
Reply to: Message 35 by dwise1
10-26-2022 12:22 AM

Re: ID About to Fail?
Responding in two parts. First, response to your review of what I prior wrote.
Throw up big numbers and it sounds impressive and convincing, but provide some kind of context or analysis to show what those big numbers actually mean and suddenly they're not so impressive.

The same thing is done in probability arguments in which the numbers don't mean a thing until a proper math model is presented. At the very least, a math model must describe as accurately as possible the physical system that it's trying to describe.
Yet in my example, I provided enough that is necessary. I did provide some numbers, and context for a scenario of a purposeless “A” and “B”.
And yes, I know (from the beginning) that ringo didnt actually mean to investigate how the first two letters of the alphabet showed up in his post, nor would I really expect either of those entries to likely be “purposeless”. Nevertheless, he demanded rigor for a question that he was vague about. So I just turned his idiom into a more precise example and went with the design explanation there. In my explanation I included hard numbers, and numbers that were not precise but were generally accurate estimations, and when all put together they should clearly show why the ‘example’ would fall into a ‘designed’ category vs not-designed.
Your apparent setting up an argument around randomly generating the alphabet (sorry, you seemed to engage in more hand-waving than actually presenting a model) only supported that.
And exactly how did I engage in hand-waving?
When I first read Chapter Three, "Accumulating Small Changes", of Richard Dawkins' The Blind Watchmaker (1986) in which he reported on his first "WEASEL" program to generate a line of Shakespeare ("METHINKS IT IS LIKE A WEASEL"), I simply could not believe it. So, using his description of his program (he didn't provide a program listing) as a software specification, I wrote my own in my working language at the time,.... I called mine MONKEY
Charming! I read your monkey page(s), and though I will give you credit for being thorough on what I would suspect you are referring to as the “proper math models”. Sure, it is doing well to compare a single-step selection vs a cumulative selection. But that comparison is really not the issue at hand. Many others have written about this, but the problem resides, in part, in having a target selection while claiming cumulative selection. I know you (and Dawkins) mentioned something about objections to using a target, but you both miss the point of it. More on that later
Most of the creationist/ID (same thing) "refutations" of WEASEL involve non-existent "locking rings" that were supposed to locking any successful letter
No, ID does not use that phrase. But if you want to quibble, the target phrase is the ‘locking’ part of the program.
So, I would assume that the "model" you were trying to build up to is producing the alphabet in
alphabetical order, which is what my MONKEY does.
No, that is not the model I was trying to build. Go back and read my response more carefully.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by dwise1, posted 10-26-2022 12:22 AM dwise1 has not replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 41 of 507 (901212)
11-06-2022 1:36 AM
Reply to: Message 35 by dwise1
10-26-2022 12:22 AM

Re: ID About to Fail?
Part 2 of 2. Breaking down a new model you proposed and how it relates (or doesn't) to cumulative selection.
Typically (at least I've never seen any exception to this rule) creationists try to saddle evolution with single-step selection models. That is where you try to make an entire complex system all fall together in one single step. That seems to also be the typical salvationist creationist model of speciation in which an entire new species suddenly appears ("a snake lays an egg and a bird hatches" according to one clueless creationist) replete with entirely new complex features -- complete and utter nonsense that only a stupid lying creationist could ever seriously consider.
Hmm, I initially had a mostly rejecting answer for this paragraph of yours. But then I read it very carefully and came to the conclusion that in some cases I could agree with this. You had some very interesting turns of phrase in there.
First, some minor disagreements and quibbles. I am not a creationist, nor have I ever played one in any thespian endeavor. So, if you have actually heard this whole idea from a creationist, I really don’t care. Also, the last phrase (in italics) is all fluff and doesn’t matter to the argument, even if I might agree with the sentiment. I’m going to ignore it.
So the second sentence (bolded) is the important one. If truly, as you seem to indicate, the 2nd sentence explains the first, then I would probably agree with this beginning. But it may depend on what you mean by “an entire complex system”. I would define a “system” as individual components that are interconnected to perform a task. A “complex system”, with ‘complex’ relating to probability, would envision a large number of parts and/or very tight, constraining limits on how the parts are interconnected to achieve the system function. “Entire” further solidifies that everything needs to be in place for the task/function to succeed. More on this in a moment.
The third sentence is a little problematic. For one, mentioning “speciation” means there is a starting point, one that is in its own right a complete system. In your example, you infer this as a snake. The next phrasing - “an entire new species”, differentiates it from the speciation source, as in it is NOT a snake, and you infer it in your example as a bird. (Just for the record, the claim of a snake laying an egg and a bird hatching would never be something suggested by a serious ID proponent. From a creationist, perhaps, but not from ID) But from the context of the preceding sentences, one would have to conclude that the species source and the “new species” would each be “an entire complex system” in their own rights.
But also in that sentence, you further describe the “entire new species” as being “replete with entirely new complex features”. In a general sense, how would you define that? It sure sounds like that could also be their own “complex systems” in the same sense as before, or at the very least multiple “complex” and “new” parts making up the last new system.
So let’s take all this and consider it with your next example…
We can calculate the probability of the entire alphabet spontaneously falling together in alphabetical order in one single step: 1.6244×10-37. I posited a supercomputer that would make a million attempts every second. In order to arrive at a million-in-one chance of success would take about 195 trillion years -- nearly 10,000 times longer than the universe's estimated age of 20 billion years!
Yes, all good there with the probabilities and descriptions. In this case, the alphabet is taking the role of “an entire complex system”. The task would be just being an alphabet, the English one in this case. The ‘parts’ would correspond to the letters, with them being in the specific order we are used to (A to Z), but without any regard to case.
Continuing with this example…
Of course, that model only describes creation ex nihilo, not evolution nor natural processes. That is why your model absolutely requires an external Creator.
This is not correct. It does not have to be creation ex nihilo. It could have a starting point and work from there, just like your WEASEL/MONKEY example. And this model doesn’t “absolutely” require a creator, but it probably would result from a creator nonetheless.
For the alphabet example, let's start with generation 0 with characters in reverse order, 26 placeholders (ie: ZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA) just to demonstrate 0% of a match starting out. Your example seems to model having all 26 letters potentially change or set at once, which is perfectly fine. So if the first change results in the Alphabet you would have just witnessed a 1.6244×10^37 event.
But your limitations are not ours.
Cumulative selection is based on evolutionary processes and so models those processes far better. It is stateful, always starting from the last position you had reached.
Sorry, but the limitations are yours. I don’t have much of a problem with your statement here on cumulative selection. The problem is, it just doesn't apply.
If the target is “an entire complex system”, the task/function of that system is to be the Alphabet. A result of: ZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA doesn’t fulfill the task, and neither does: ZWDVUSQMYXATLFJIHGCEBRKPON.
And neither does: ABCVSNMYXFPZTLJIWDHGERKUOQ. But wait, does having it starting with ABC mean it will be selected for more than the other examples, and those letters might stick around? No, it will not! Why? Because ABCVSNMYXFPZTLJIWDHGERKUOQ does not fill the task or function of the Alphabet, and being the Alphabet is the system. Having 3 letters of the beginning of the alphabet, or 11.5% of interconnected parts in a system does not a system task/function make. So there is no reason 3 letters in the right spot would pull any weight, it wouldn't be selected for.
That is why cumulative selection would not work in most cases. If you are talking about a “complex system” with multiple parts, you need all the parts there for the system to work. Not one part, not ½ the parts, not even 98% of parts. You need 100% for function. There really is no “stateful” position that is of any value on the way to a complex system. You need that system instantiated all at once to function.
If the complexity is high enough (or low probability), you are not likely to see fruition of a completed system based on random events. But such systems are a hallmark of design.
Walking cross country, you cannot reliably arrive from NYC to Denver in one single very long step, yet after a series of shorter steps that led you to the vicinity of Denver, another short step to Denver is not unreasonable.
This scenario isn't an apples to apples comparison. Of course you cannot go from NYC to Denver in one step. Nobody would suggest that. You are trying to force a cumulative scenario here. But even so, if you allow for normal sized steps that can get you from NYC to Denver, you still have the same problem.
I calculated that it would take about 3,772,243 steps, minimally, to go from NYC to Denver. Could someone do that? Yes, of course. But if walking randomly, you are very unlikely to complete that journey unless something is helping you along, like with cumulative selection to a pre-selected target. If there was some process positively giving feedback as to movement toward Denver, of course you would make it there much faster than without a target to guide which would entail a wholly random direction for each step. But why would anyone realistically expect that kind of selection pressure.
Starting in NYC, you take a few random steps that head west. You are now 10 feet closer to Denver than before. But you are still 9,430,600 feet from Denver. What in the world would be giving any indication you are better suited for Denver than if you had gone 10 feet east? An evolutionary process would have no idea, as it would not even know what “Denver” is.
Clearly, a math model that depends on single step selection will very reliably fail while a model the depends on cumulative selection would almost be guaranteed to succeed. Clearly.
As you have described it, yes, this is true. Clearly.
What is the probability of the synthesis of amino acids? Inevitable. What is the probability that amino acids will form protein-like structures (AKA proteinoids)? Inevitable. What is the probability that a number of those proteinoids would have autocatalytic properties? Inevitable.
But here you are inferring that EVERYTHING is inevitable. But obviously that is not true. And the reason why is that your cumulative selection is obviously not realistic.
So if your probability math model is going from nothing but basic chemicals to a complete unicellular life form in one single step (AKA "single-step selection"), then you can forget it since that model is doomed to failure.
I agree. A random event going all in one step is doomed to fail. That is why I do not think it is done by a random event. It is done by a mind.
But if the model is any kind of step-wise development of naturally occurring precursors eventually leading to a self-replicating structure of some kind (which will eventually lead to that complete unicellular life form) will follow the probability models of cumulative selection which is known to succeed.
IF a self-replicating structure came about by step-wise development of precursors, and IF it could lead to a unicellular life form via the same process…, it wouldn’t have done it by cumulative selection. But otherwise I doubt it. Cumulative selection is not realistic in most scenarios. 1) Cumulative selection could not have a target in mind. So there would be no direction it is aiming for.
2) Any selected ‘step’ would have to exist on its own, there is nothing that would ‘know’ where or if it was heading anywhere after that, so having any target in mind would be meaningless.
3) Except for the selected ‘step’ existing itself, that would do nothing to help make a multi-part complex system, as you would need all the parts (steps) together to build the larger system. (like the ABCVSNMYXFPZTLJIWDHGERKUOQ)
4) If you envision multiple separate ‘parts’ somehow arriving on scene together (unlikely), there would also have to be an accounting for how the parts interact, or fit together. It is unlikely that such parts would be ‘fitted’ for each other arriving separately and with no relation to each other, so getting them to match is a matter of unlikely times unlikely, and that extends exponentially for each part that you would consider for the larger complex system.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 35 by dwise1, posted 10-26-2022 12:22 AM dwise1 has not replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 45 by Taq, posted 11-07-2022 11:46 AM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 42 of 507 (901213)
11-06-2022 1:53 AM
Reply to: Message 36 by ringo
10-26-2022 4:49 PM

So dictionary definitions and synonyms are all the rigor you can muster?
After I equated “design” with “purpose”, you asked:
“Now you need to define what "purposeful" means - and how you would distinguish purposeful from purposeless.”
I gave sufficient and satisfactory definitions of all those words. And that is all you asked for - definitions. You didn't ask for arguments relating to some other idea. There should be no call for me to write an essay as to the meaning of the words design, purpose, and purposeless when simple dictionary definitions suffice. My meaning of those words is the same as the many dictionary references I made.
Why do they have to be more?
So, when I ask you for a definition, I'm not asking you to copy/paste something that took you three seconds to copy off the Internet. I'm asking you to explain it in your own words, to demonstrate that you understand it.
And I already did that in Message 25. You didn't like my words, so I then gave you dictionary words in Message 29.
Why don’t you give an example of an acceptable answer for one of those. How would you define “purpose”?
ringo writes:
WookieeB writes:
Define circular.
Circular is using "designed" to define "purposeful" and using 'purposeful" to define "designed".
Well, that is not exactly a definition now is it. It’s your same, repeated example. *sigh*
How about the words “intention” and “objective” that I also used.
And circular, as I think you are using it, would only apply to an argument, not a definition. Phrases and words used to define something should reflect the same idea, so being “circular” is sort of the point there.
Intelligent design is trying to overturn science. Defending Intelligent Design is trying to overturn science.
Regardless of your opinion of ID, again…. I was merely defining some words, words you apparently have trouble understanding. My definitions were in no way objectionable nor constitute a defense of anything, other than defending that the concept of definitions allows the use of other words that mean the same thing.
I said, "How, specifically, do you decide that A is purposeful and B is purposeless?"

I'm asking how you decide that one thing is purposeful and another is not. (A am NOT talking about the letters "A" and "B", by the way.)​
No duh on the last part!
I answered you already. Via my own words, via dictionary definitions, via an example. You are the one being vague by labeling very generic A and B things, yet you want a detailed breakdown of each of those. Well, I had to take your vaguerities and create my own objects to use as an example.
But I will try to explain it using the things you saw.
1. A computer.
2. Shelves of books. (I'm in a library.)
3. Chairs.
4. A fire extinguisher.
5. A clock.

I'm guessing we'll agree that they all have purpose and they were all designed.
Yes, I think we would agree they have purpose and were designed. But how do you know that?
For the books, how do you know they were designed? I would give it to you that some person purposefully put the books on the shelves, and likely in an ordered way. But the books themselves, how do you know they were designed? Did you see each one, or any of them, have pages put together and bound between thick sheets of cardboard or another hard, flat substance? Would you even consider that maybe, just maybe, a paper, ink, and glue factory and a sewing shop happened to be in the path of a tornado, and the mixing of all that commotion produced the books, or even one book?
For the chairs, how do you know they were designed? I’m envisioning they are made mostly of wood and fabric (though the principle still applies if made of something different). If so, would you ever have guessed that those chairs came from Indonesia when Mount Marapi erupted, and the pyroclastic flow felled a large group of trees and swept over a clothing store, and in the aftermath rescuers happened to come upon these perfectly formed chairs that were made by the power of a volcano?
I highly doubt you would consider those options for books and chairs. Instead, I think you have intuitively reached the conclusion that the books, chairs, extinguisher, clock and computer were all designed objects. Is that unreasonable? Or would you truly have to go to each and every book you see, search through and find a name on it that most would refer to as an author, and then track down that individual to make sure they actually created the coded information that lies on the many pieces of paper in the form of patterns of ink? And then do a similar investigation for each and every item you see around you. Now of course you could do that investigation if you wanted, and I’m sure it would confirm your suspicions. But is that really necessary?
If not, why can you make such an intuitive conclusion of design? You may have heard about or seen some manufacturing process that makes things like books, computers, chairs, etc. But you still could not know for sure that the actual objects you see apply to the processes you may have heard of. So what is it that gives you the confidence, right when you see the items and probably without even thinking on it, that they were designed.
The reason you can make that determination is because you sense, probably in an instant, that those items appear to be an ordered and intentionally arranged series of parts that would be exceedingly unlikely to come about by some random event(s), AND you perceive the objects have a form (in some manner) that corresponds to a pattern that is not inherent to the basic matter they are made from.
You do not need to know who the person(s) was that designed or constructed the item, nor how they did so to make a determination that the items were designed.
The same principles that allow you to make a determination of design for the objects you specified apply to many, many other items you probably notice each day. Nearly every person has the same intuitive capability, and they make these types of observations every day.
The exact same principles apply to detecting design in:
human made artifacts
animal artifacts (ie. nests, beaver dams)
extraterrestrial artifacts (if they exist)
Mt. Rushmore for 99% of people that have never heard of ‎Gutzon Borglum
and also much of life, which is a major consideration in ID.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 36 by ringo, posted 10-26-2022 4:49 PM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 43 by Taq, posted 11-07-2022 10:43 AM WookieeB has not replied
 Message 44 by ringo, posted 11-07-2022 11:32 AM WookieeB has replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 46 of 507 (903138)
12-05-2022 1:18 AM
Reply to: Message 44 by ringo
11-07-2022 11:32 AM

Stop being so legalistic. We're trying to have a discussion here.
And I am engaged in the discussion (albeit takes me a long time to get back to it). A big way has been: someone asks a question, and I answer the question. I have answered the question with the format that it was asked in. You didn't ask for arguments; you asked for definitions.
It's supposed to be a DISCUSSION. Arguments are all that matters.
Then perhaps you should look up the definition of “DISCUSSION”. Because a discussion does not necessarily mean presenting arguments.
Besides, I did give arguments too. But you seemed to have skipped over them.
That's the first step in any discussion.
Really? Show me a “discussion” where the interlocutors are laying out essays on definitions of various words before they start getting to the meat of the discussion. I know Church of
Scientology folk are really big on definitions, but even they are not that desperate.
Because they do not agree with your claims of ID.
Again, really? How do they not agree with my claims of ID?
The point is that you CAN'T define "purpose" in the context of ID. And you support that statement by your inability to define it.
But I have defined it. What you cannot seem to understand is that the definitions of words like “purpose” and “design” are EXACTLY THE SAME as they would be used in any conversation that uses the words. I gave you plenty of definitions for each. The same meaning for those words is implied whether I’m talking about ID or whether I’m talking about a computer program or a painting or a dog whining at the door or anything else where those words are appropriate.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 44 by ringo, posted 11-07-2022 11:32 AM ringo has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 51 by ringo, posted 12-05-2022 12:05 PM WookieeB has not replied

Posts: 190
Joined: 01-18-2019

Message 47 of 507 (903139)
12-05-2022 1:21 AM
Reply to: Message 45 by Taq
11-07-2022 11:46 AM

Re: ID About to Fail?
Taq writes:
Look at the title of this thread. In order for ID to be falsifiable you need objective criteria for determining purpose. Otherwise, all you have is a subjective opinion which does not get ID to being on the level of falsifiable or scientific.
In your opinion, life is designed. Ok. That's just an opinion, and one that science has no reason to take seriously.
And it is your opinion that life came from unguided evolution. Sorry, what is the objective criteria you are using?
Why would evolution need a target? This highlights one of the flaws of ID thinking.
Perhaps you should ask that question of Richard Dawkins or dwise1. It is their model that uses a target.
I actually think that it cannot have a target. Didn’t you get that from me saying “ Cumulative selection could not have a target in mind”?
ID thinking consistently suffers from the Sharpshooter fallacy.
An example please!
You are assuming that the adaptations we see were the targets, but they are simply where evolution landed.
No. I am reasoning that the targets were designed. I am not assuming anything with regards to adaptations, because I do not think that is the way that complex features (like camera eyes) came about. You are the one assuming that evolution landed it that way.
There is direction in evolution, but it is towards higher fitness and not towards a specific adaptation. This is why we often see different solutions to the same problem in independent lineages, such as the different camera eyes in vertebrates and cephalopods or the different wings on birds and bats.
I agree with the first sentence. But the second sentence does not necessarily follow from the first. For one, you haven’t defined what the “problem” is or you are ad hoc making one up after the fact. Secondly, for all the power that evolution is supposed to have, I find it very amusing that your supposed “different” solutions are pretty much the same (ie, camera eyes). How is it that two (or often more) very different lineages independently developed highly complex systems that are basically the same, all via unguided processes. That is quite a coincidence! And yet it supposedly happens all the time with evolution.
Nor does water know where downhill is, but it still flows downhill. Rain doesn't know that it's target is the Pacific ocean, but it still gets there. Natural processes didn't have the Grand Canyon as a target, yet it still produced it.
So? Is anyone saying the Grand Canyon was designed? I don’t see the connection. Water following a law-like process is not a surprise. That a lot of water following laws carved out the Grand Canyon, though really cool, is no surprise either.
Why wouldn't adding parts create a multi-part complex system?
Of course you need to add parts to create a multi-part complex system. But you need ALL of the parts there, and they have to have been fitted together properly before you have any system. So, if you have any parts missing, you have no system. If any parts are not properly configured\fitted for its ‘partner’ part(s), then you have no system (even if technically ALL the ‘parts’ are present).
So, in the case of the Alphabet system (patterned off of Dawkins Weasel), even though 3 of 26 letters (12%) are in place with ABCVSNMYXFPZTLJIWDHGERKUOQ, there is no system. There is not even 12% of a system. In the context of the system, which relates to some function on the whole, the 12% that is there means nothing, and there is no reason to hold that the 12% will be conserved until the rest of the parts arrive. As for having any system, it really comes down to it all being there and working,....or nothing.
Nature is not limited by what you can imagine. You also assume that the modern parts are the same as the parts when they first arrived.
Ahh, but nature is limited by its own laws.
I have no belief that parts need to be in the same state as they arrived. In fact, I would assume they wouldn't be, and any interactions between parts would be total coincidences and they would have to modify to either produce the ‘needed’ interaction (which nothing knows about yet) or to improve the whole system function anyways.
Let’s go back to the Alphabet (weasel) system. As stated before, ABCVSNMYXFPZTLJIWDHGERKUOQ on its journey to a presumed full alphabet would not preserve its beginning ABC due to being a portion of the full alphabet system. There is no system or even the hint of a system to conserve them. Thus the only way they would be conserved (to an extent) is if they were on their own, individually advantageous adaptations, as Dawkins and dwise1 indicated in their respective scenarios. (OR one could allow that together they were a combined adaptation made up of the 3 pieces. I wont extrapolate much on that option, but the same principles will apply whether they are 3, 2 or 1 adaptation)
As their own somewhat conserved entities, they could not be considered as ‘parts’ of the potential future Alphabet, as there is nothing they have as a reference to it. And it would be very unlikely that they had any integration with the other adaptations, let alone any reason to develop the potential future one. (A is its own thing, B is its own thing, C is its own thing. A has no reason to nor likely any affinity to link with B, B anything for C, or C with A).
If all the letters are representative of some sort of adaptation, then there would also be no reason for A, B, or C to be conserved vs some other adaptation that might come along. Which by extension for all the supposed adaptation slots means that in the end, the likelihood of the Alphabet occurring would still fall under the normal random chance for it to appear spontaneously.
We could use the multipart complex mammalian middle ear as an example. It is made up of 3 highly adapted bones (i.e. the malleus, incus, and stapes). If you remove one the whole thing stops working. In the fossil record, we many transitional reptile to mammal fossils demonstrating how two bones in the reptilian lower jaw moved up into the mammalian middle ear.
So what. 2 bones does not hearing make. It is all assumed[ that the two bones moved from the jaw to the ear. Though of course that has not really been shown how. If anything, you have something in the roughly general location that is of the right substance, but nothing to show that they were the right shape or interacted from a chewing or jaw function to that of a hearing one. You still have a lot of detail to write from your imagined story.
Also, you reflexively challenge evolution as if ID is the automatic answer if other explanations fail. That is just a God of the Gaps. ID needs evidence of its own.
Really??? Exactly where have I done that? Swap the words evolution and ID, and I can say the exact same thing about you.
It needs to explain where these things came from, and why we see specific patterns in nature, such as a nested hierarchy.
Again, really? If you cannot see how these things are explained as good as or even BETTER with ID, then you know nothing.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 45 by Taq, posted 11-07-2022 11:46 AM Taq has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 48 by dwise1, posted 12-05-2022 3:08 AM WookieeB has not replied
 Message 49 by dwise1, posted 12-05-2022 3:42 AM WookieeB has not replied
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