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Everything posted by cypress

  1. Can you demonstrate though that your observations about human behavior apply to historical populations and that this distribution of accomplishment should also apply to genetic distribution of functional traits? How would one show that?
  2. This approach is hundreds if not thousands of years old. I think it is safe to say he can skip the foundation since most are familiar with the argument. I suspect this is the heart of it, neither side fights fair because neither side is willing to come to a common ground. I'm not sure it's this easy. In the case of what needsimprovement did here, he did not throw out the scientific argument, he accepted that the evidence indicates a long history of life on earth when interpreted according to some particular assumptions. However then needsimprovement radically changed those assumptions and came to a completely different conclusion. Since the atheist cannot demonstrate that the initial assumptions are correct, that atheist screams foul for having the rug pull out from under him. I suspect there never was any common ground in the first place.
  3. No, moontonman, sorry you are wrong. Each example you and skeptic offered have deterministic components included and the deterministic process accounts for the observed effect but without reducing net probability. Since the deterministic processes account for the direct observed effect, entropy is not reduced as a result of this process since deterministic processes do not change probability of discrete states. My challenge remains unchanged, and that is to offer an example of a physical only set of processes acting on a macro system that results in outcomes with steady reductions in the overall probability of the discrete states when inputs and outputs are included. Abiogenesis and evolution (as an explanation for all observed diversity) as presently posited are described as systems that can supposedly accomplish this task. Yet the theory offers no way to explain how this is accomplished. Remember, I am not speaking of thermal entropy here, I am speaking of molecular and information entropy. As stated in the modern versions of the theories, both fail to address the apparent violation in probability theory and entropy laws with respect to molecular configuration and the content of biological information (the functional, prescriptive information stored in the DNA molecules). I have been consistent and unchanging on these points from the beginning and you have offered no examples and no explanation as to how net probability does get reduced.
  4. Below the water table, and in Houston 1 - 2 meters is normally where the water table lies, there is very little free air except near trees due to the roots and water consumption by the trees, however there is still dissolved oxygen and generally plenty of it. However for your situation in the sand you are correct. One final note, dry sand that is not smooth and not compacted can have porosity significantly greater than the 20% I suggested due to inefficient packing caused by irregular shapes. In tests, porosity up to 40% is observed, but addition of small amounts of liquid provides sufficient lubrication to end this effect.
  5. Mississippichem, Needsimprovement is applying a metaphysical explanation to historical events in order to answer how and why the evidence is as it is, but your critique asks for evidence that you know does not exist and therefore cannot possibly even support the alternative. That both sides of this argument move the goal post around and apply double standards as indicated earlier is why it is true that neither side is fighting fair. No, needsimprovement accepts the mountain of evidence. He is not disputing what we observe. He is answering the question how and why it got to be the way it is and he is using a theistic argument to answer that question. You object because you want him to use a scientific explanation for how and why it is so. Trouble is science cannot answer these questions, and because science and materialism have no way to answer these questions, you have no way to rebut his claim. His claim against you is no smaller than your claim against him. It may not be as circular as you wish to believe, though I agree it is not testable. He begins by positing a creator with particular attributes and capabilities and then he explains the evidence and shows how it is consistent with his posit. This is not circular. What he has not done is offer a method to test his posit today to validate that it is a mechanism that is presently in operation and capable of producing the effects posited. The material processes advocated by atheists seem to have a similar problem in that they too are not testable. Both sides seem to accept the evidence that is available, neither are able to show that their posits are correct about how and why the evidence is as it is. Neither side fights fair.
  6. I understand the supposition, how do you demonstrate that permafrost sourced methane actually, in real definitive terms, contributes to positive feedback? Please provide a source that establishes clear evidence of positive feedback. Since natural processes historically have resulted in temperatures 4 or more times greater than the presumed human effect, shouldn't we be even more focused on stopping these natural effects?
  7. I could just as easily suggested different colored rocks of equal density and shape. Random processes alone would not sort these but deterministic processes alone can. The point of course is that random processes are neither sufficient nor necessary to accomplish the sorting you and skeptic suggested. This is as expected because entropy laws inform us that random processes acting on a system will drive the outcome configuration to the discrete states with the highest probability. When deterministic processes are also involved, these add constraints that limit the permutations and alter probability distribution, but either way the random process by virtue of entropy considerations drives the system to the highest probability over time, which is partial sorting if gravity and density differences are involved.
  8. What, roughly, is the relative distribution in size of the sand particles? Depending on the distribution, porosity could vary from 5 to 30%. If you have some of the sand, you can measure the porosity with water and a scale. If you don't know and don't have any sample sand, then go with 20% as most surface sand is well sorted and mostly spherical shaped by wind and water.
  9. It in practice it does not depend very much on the size nor the packing but it does depend most on the size distribution of the sand particles. Our well completions depend heavily on use of sand packing for reservoir integrity maintenance and empirical data on porosity is widely available based on relative size distribution. If you can give me more information I may be able to help you.
  10. The reality of the double standard gets to the heart of the question posed which is to theists and atheists fight fair. Apparently this point was not made clear enough, judging by the moderator comments, and my apologies for that but both sides employ double standards, neither you here regardless of what group you fall in nor many atheist nor many theists for their part will admit application of the double standard and thus the answer to the question is, No Theists and Atheists do not fight fair.
  11. But if one were to place numbered objects in the box but otherwise there were no other differences in physical properties would they get sorted by random processes? Entropy considerations say they won't. How about taking the objects from the previous case where the physical differences did exist but the random shaking was replaced by a determinist process of measuring and placement based on the physical differences? How about using the numbered objects and sorting them based on a deterministic process of reading the numbers and placing them based on the numbered values? From this it seems that random processes are neither necessary nor sufficient, while determinist processes are both necessary and sufficient, correct?
  12. Are you suggesting there can be no purpose?
  13. If we were to trace back the cause of these deformities and then ask what purpose is there for allowing such a causal power to exist, perhaps we might explain the existence of such suffering without rushing to blame a presumed creator.
  14. It does not seem to be too much of a stretch to suppose that there may be a formula of causal drivers that could describe global average temperature, though I doubt it would be as simple a form as you have proposed. Interesting observation. Yes, One limitation of Ice core data though is that while they provide a low frequency average CO2 level over long periods of time, they greatly underestimate (by nearly 100%) variability for shorter periods of time according to Van Hoof in "Atmospheric CO2 during the 13th century AD: reconciliation of data from ice core measurements and stomatal frequency analysis." Tellus (2005). One reason may be due to diffusion of CO2 because of localized concentration gradients. This would tend to diminish the apparent magnitude of CO2 variation over time and would account for disagreement you mention. It seems like an odd coincidence. Building on what you have presented thus far, one factor that could contribute the most to this proposed pinciple would be cloud cover. 100% cloud cover has the ability to cool an overheated earth very quickly while near 0% cloud cover would warm the earth very quickly (relative to geologic time). If 12 degrees centigrade represented a practical lower limit to substantial cloud formation and 22 represented the point where cloud cover increases dramatically, this might be one area of possible investigation. Yes. Flow systems that involve scaling due to pressure drop are constrained this way. Likewise systems that include phase changes are as well. The fact that our weather is predicated on a system involving two phase changes and that these sorts of practical limits show up in systems involving phase changes is interesting to say the least. It seems like an area worthy of more investigation. This is the part that I have an issue. Your form of equation seems overly simplistic and there is no good reason to chose this form just yet. I think you are onto something here but the form of your equation seems to have the weakest support.
  15. New sources of crude oil and natural gas are found to replace the consumed reserves so that there is no current information that would allow for a prediction in the foreseeable future. Here is a link to data compiled by BP on world reserves and consumption. Current recoverable reserves are sufficient for about 40 years assuming no change in consumption and no new finds. Neither of these assumptions are good assumptions of course but it provides some information about current reserve volume.
  16. Again, it is not a major problem for relativity. Einstein's Greatest blunder as he put it was to set the cosmological constant to a non-zero value to fit the popular notion that the universe was static. His blunder was failure to recognize that the volume of the universe was indeed expanding. An expanding volume can be accommodated within GR by postulating a kinetic model initiated by an initial expansive force or by postulating some sort undetected energy throughout the expanse of the universe or through other posits. There does not currently seem to be a mechanism to determine how expansion happens or test to confirm it though there is a fair amount of activity occurring to attempt to do so. You did not say it without realizing it. It does not toss out GR. There is still a lot of work occurring around confirming the cosmological constant, though the number seems to be bouncing around a number very close or equal to zero. Here is a link that describes this work to test these ideas. Great questions, I would point you back to the link I provided. There are many more that discuss this issue on the web as well.
  17. If we were to change the question a bit, we can separate three factors that underly the question. Then we can return to the original question. "Is work done when a rolling marble crosses a frictionless plate in a vacuum?" For this question one only considers work that might transfer from the marble to the surrounding. Can there be any? What about when it is not in a vacuum? What about if one must push the marble to get it rolling? Finally, what do you think was the intent of the question being asked in context with these questions I asked you to consider?
  18. My response was to the motivation behind the theory of expansion. Michel indicated that throwing out expansion would overturn the theory of General Relativity which is not correct. What is correct is that the expansion model is an attempt to explain the apparent uniform nature of the universe without having to place our point of observation sufficiently near the center. I made no attempt here to support the expansion theory or the more conventional dimensional model of the universe since this would be a diversion of the primary topic. It is unfortunate that stopping where I did in order to honor the rule of not diverting threads leaves me vulnerable to your unwarranted criticism. The relevance of my previous response to the original question posed is that expansion does modify the properties of space in that it would void a conventional understanding of three dimensional geometry for the universe.
  19. Yet without repeatable experimental confirmation, this remains unconfirmed. It is conjecture. We don't know how or why novel forms were derived, correct? Modern biological experimentation seems to indicate that neither genetic or phenotypic variations provide the ability to generate the even basic precursor components of novel protein folds, new protein to protein binding sites, new expression control binding sites, developmental control cascades, etc. required to begin the pathway to novel form much less complete the pathways within the timeframe required by the geologic time scale. It appears that the processes invoked by the modern synthesis does account for adaptation but not novel form. Without a scientific basis for generating novel form, the question posed by the OP cannot be answered scientifically. The concept is not the problem, the problem comes in when one attempts to apply the concept to what is known about biological systems. When attempt is made to apply it in a practical way, this does not make sense. If there are two favorable evolutionary pathways available whereby each step of each pathway offers advantage, and since both pathways proceed by random mutation with equal probability, then both should advance. If one is advantageous over the other, then that alone should proceed. It is only of neither offers advantage would one observe divergence. But without advantage, the theory looses explanatory power since without advantage no pathway can be established in a reasonable period of time. In this paper, the researchers model the expectation time for for two mutations to take place in a gene regulatory sequence one to deactivate it and a second to modify and reactivate it. Here is a key finding: "Consistent with recent experimental observations for Drosophila, we find that a few million years is sufficient, but for humans with a much smaller effective population size, this type of change would take >100 million years." Over one hundred million years to wait for just one novel transcription binding site involving a hypothetical two mutations in humans despite the reality that many binding sites involve five to ten specific differences. Yet humans contain many thousands of difference far greater than this in comparison to our closest presumed relative and each evolutionary pathway requires far more than a single change in expression control to derive a novel function. It also requires coordinated changes to multiple well fitted proteins, developmental control cascades, inventory control, transportation and placement controls and tools etc., etc. Combining this and one can see that the geologic timeframe for evolutionary development of humans is off by many orders of magnitude. but it is worse because this study presumed the initial mutation was neutral. I instead any of the intermediary required mutations are detrimental and the the time-scales shift by several more orders of magnitude. I appreciate the conceptual explanation, but in keeping with the scientific paradigms of which I am certain you agree, the model you propose does not fit with experimental results and the models that are developed to extend these results in geologic time.
  20. But only because one day is evenly divisible by the cycle time = (time on + time off). If it were not evenly divisible, you would have had to work out the remainder and figured the amount of time on and off during that last partial cycle.
  21. I think we agree. There cannot be two sets of standards, one for material only explanations and one for explanations that include a maker. It becomes much more difficult though since most arguments occur over historical sciences where repeatable methods, deductive reasoning an direct evidence is much more difficult to come by and this is where double standards begin to be used by the materialist science advocates. Many continue to insist the advocate for creation present direct and repeatable evidence that a creator existed at that point in history, but does not generally apply that same standard to their own argument that their favored processes existed then and had the ability to produce the posited effect or even that they are in operation today. This poor behavior only serves to diminish the materialist argument and call much of what is claimed by them into question. The creationist is properly chastised for making an argument that something is factually true because it was written long ago by someone who claims to have talked to God, but the materialist makes a similar error by taking materialism as a prior commitment as Lewontin does here: "We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is an absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door. The eminent Kant scholar Lewis Beck used to say that anyone who could believe in God could believe in anything. To appeal to an omnipotent deity is to allow that at any moment the regularities of nature may be ruptured, that Miracles may happen"
  22. True enough but General Relativity does not require that the universe is expanding as a 3 dimensional manifold of some higher dimensional construct. this expansion idea is a mathematical model of the universe constructed to accommodate the presumptions of arbitrary cosmological principles. So no zapatos, there is no major problem with relativity whether or not one assumes expansion. The assumption does provide an mechanism whereby the universe can be considered uniform in all dimensions regardless of ones position and this is the answer to your question. The alternative to the posited expansion is that the earth must be close to the center of the observable universe so that it appears to be uniform in every direction.
  23. Glad I could help. Yes it is the square root. ^ is shorthand for exponent and the formula is raised to the 1/2 or 0.5 power. It can be shown that if ^2 is squaring a number then the number raised to the reciprocal or 1/2 is the square root.
  24. So it is the properties then that are responsible for sorting, right? The random process simply provides the mechanism for movement and thus determines the time (based on probability) it takes to complete the sorting process.
  25. In the case of the refrigerator, you argue we should ignore export of thermal heat flux responsible for the resulting reduction in permutations of discrete thermal energy states and thus the export of thermal disorder by this energy flux from the contents of the refrigerator. You ignore this output by careful definition of the system but then you err by illogically and falsely implying that the heat flux across the narrowly defined boundary is part of the universe and not part of your now ill-defined system. No it is still not correct. "The entropy of a sub-system can be decreased by causing certain processes to act on the system through fluxes across the boundary that directly reduce the probability of the sub-system configuration of discrete states but at the cost of increasing the probability of the configuration of discrete states of the source or sink of these fluxes so that net entropy is equal or greater." Your example was imaginary. Design is a process that exists today and is casually adequate to explain functional prescriptive information. We don't have clear unambiguous evidence that design existed 4 billion years ago on earth but we have some evidence from the design characteristics also present in the universe that design existed during the beginning of the universe billions of years earlier. Contrasting with the alternate theory, we have evidence that evolutionary processes exist today but it cannot be demonstrated they account for observed diversity. The theory posits processes that are not casually adequate. We don't have clear unambiguous evidence that these processes existed prior to and at the beginning of life on earth nor throughout the initial history of life, though some hold to an unsupported presumption that for part of this time they did. So design is casually adequate to explain functional prescriptive information, and there is evidence design existed prior to life on earth, therefore it is reasonable to presume it exists continuously from the beginning.
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