There is something new in Nature and the Washington Post that applies to this dialog: http://www.nature.com/nsu/020812/020812-6.html Titled, "Gene explains dumb apes", it has results of an analysis of a gene that is mutated in 15 family members of a family in England. These people have "profound speech defects". The specific gene in question, and its mutations were presented in this work.
"NDT" does not have to be based on random mutations of base pair sequences or genes. I have been trying to explore in other threads a series of phenomena that rationally support this. Randomness can be used in a general class of thermodynamics working with probabilities to establish what might be called envelopes of probability in which mutation rates can be predicted for genes. However, there may be a way to turn this into an engineering problem. By "this", I mean where mutations are likely to occur and how often. Some here might be familiar with the phenomenon known as tunneling. In tunneling, an electron can cross through an energy barrier without having (probably) enough energy to do so. This is an artifact of the tails of the wave (psi^2) being outside the barrier. This is the probability part. It works. I can honestly say that I have seen electrons tunnel, with my own instruments. Magic is not needed to explain or use this as a tool. Going a level deeper into the phenomena at work, it becomes apparent that charge gradients shift at 10^15 Hz rates and act locally to the nanometer range due to the shape and strain on local bonds. What this means is that there can be a confluence of energy or momentum in a nanometer-scale region for a very short period of time in separate parts of one macromolecule. What that means is that chemical bonds in this region of confluence may transition through phases of vulnerability as these "confluences" of energy or momentum move through the region. A technical name for the confluence is phonon. This is something like sound energy except in the quantum regime and at quantum speeds. It is obvious that there is such a charge gradient in DNA since the 4 components have an affinity in 2 groups of 2. So what is needed is a study using AFM-based methods to learn where these tiny local gradients are for known sequences. Then it can be simulated. After that, it can be engineered. Check out "femtosecond chemistry". This new realm of physical chemistry is exploring atomic bond formation as it happens. None of this is mysterious. It is all step A-to-step B stuff. Some of the principals may be a bit arcane to some of the interested readers, but know this. If a program running on a computer can model it, it ain't creation. It is science.
One more time. What overthrow? What are you talking about? Unless creation is a physical phenomenon I can cause on my Pentium PC.
Mr./Dr. Borger, et al, You know, the specific arguments that you and your peers have tried to make in using certain nucleotides, sequences, genes,... to argue support for creation would not have been possible 20 years ago. Science had not filled in these voids with discoveries yet. And, your antecedents were using arguments based on what they knew of the gaps in the database of science at that time.
Taking a step back, what the creation group is attempting to do is make an argument supporting creation using technology that was 30 centuries beyond the people who wrote the creation stories. These people feared god in everything they thought and did. In fact, those people thought god made seeds sprout, seasons change, and women have babies. So, this creationist line of argument raises objections on more levels than I can shake a finger at.
Just as sure as DNA was a threshold discovery and human DNA was decoded 10 years faster than predicted at the start, science will continue this path of discovery. In another generation, some smart people will have figured out the molecular dynamics I was asking about earlier in this thread. What then will become of the creationists? If man can do it too, does that mean we are gods?
[This message has been edited by axial soliton, 08-29-2002]
After reading this article, would it be plausible to suggest that for the few differences in coding DNA between chimps and humans since the split, we are now positive-selecting specific gene changes due to specific behaviorial and environmental criteria? If that didn't come out right, chimps don't take care of permanent homes or have playmate pinups. The question is hard to ask because we seem so similar.
Is the pureifying selection rate indicating we are adapting to the general environment in the same general way?
In following these discussions, I have learned so much. Maybe this won't sound the way I want it too, but I would like to understand how another species like chimpanzees see the world and us. You know, meet an evolutionary peer.
Ha Ha. I already like bananas. Let me assure you that I will not get my primates mixed. My fixation on buttocks is in a very narrow range of human females, and one Vulcan.
Seriously though, it is a haunting and sad notion to me that religion and associated creationism have obfuscated any thought of communication with other sentient species here on this planet. It isn't the religious who want to save the primates, it's the scientists. When I was young, religion taught racism. My son met Jane Goodall at Cornell where she gave a colloquia on her time with the mountain gorillas. She was truly fortunate to know many of them personally. Wouldn't you talk to a Chimp, gorolla, dolphin, elephant, or whale if you could?