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Posts posted by akh

  1. I don't see how it would be expensive, if nature failed to put sexual desire in species as a means of preventing overpopulation. confused.gif The desire is only necessary when it is used as a means to procreate. I am referring to the desire on genetic terms not social terms.




    Did you read my comment above? To stymie sexual drive altogether is likely to require a radical alteration at the genetic level, while redirecting that desire does not. Can you see why this would be biologically expensive? Sexuality has been shown to be very plastic.


    As pointed out earlier, the idea that homosexuality is the direct result of overpopulation has not been established. I do not think that this idea seems reasonable.




    Although, homosexual relationships have provided valuable romantic/sexual relationships to benefit humanity, they are waste within the context of passing genes.


    Not necessarily true. If homosexuality increases the overall fitness of a group, tribe, or next of kin, then it is not a waste within the context of passing genes.

  2. unfortunately, life doesn't scale hammers... dose it?

    when was the last time the proverbial "falling brick" magically scaled down in size to make it survivable?

    thus you have to scale up to survive the falling bricks (tada! the magic of evolution)


    that's exactly why it is a fair test, because nature doesn't care if you are big or small, and drops rocks on people






    redundancy is useful

    size allows redundancy

    simply put

    if you have 1 of something and it fails, you die

    if you have 2 of something and it fails, you survive

    that's why being bigger is an advantage over being smaller




    Can we stop with the useless analogies? They are so full of flawed logic that it is useless to continue to discuss them.


    You still have not shown how size relates to redundancy or survivability, or fitness for that matter. Do you have specific examples? Do you have specific examples of "redundancy" and how it relates to fitness? A mouse has two kidneys and so does an elephant, yet they are very different in size. Vertebrates, vary greatly in size, yet all of them have the same body plan. There are some redundancies in vertebrates (two kidneys, two lungs) but they are shared across all species. Arguably, kidneys and lungs are not truly redundant. You seem to be suggesting that a elephant, because it is bigger, will have 10 kidneys while the mouse is stuck with two. As with your hammer analogy, none of these thought processes are actually observed in nature. So it is useless, baseless conjecture to give examples of things that don't exist.


    Vertebrates have bilateral symmetry. The only organisms I can think of that have true functional redundancy are radially symmetric with distributed brain. These organisms are universally "smaller".

  3. It might not have any foresight, but it is possibly capable of improvement over time. What I mean is, the evolution of particular traits or features has the potential to improve evolution so that the number of generations it takes to adapt to a change in the environment is lower.


    Examples of such traits:


    1) natural selection of mutation rates. Evolution would be too slow with an extremely slow mutation rate and with an extremely high mutation rate.


    2) Stress due to changes in environment can result in higher mutation rates. http://www.ncbi.nlm....pubmed/21236268 whilst this has not explicitly been shown to be advantageous, one can imagine that times of stress where survivability might be reduced the increased mutation rate could be worthwhile.


    3) non-random meitoic recombination is controlled by PRDM9 in humans. This can accelerate variability in populations in regions of the genome which have large fitness gains with heterozygosity (such as MHC region). The different recombination patterns themselves can vary and be under massive selection, which suggests that some patterns of recombination result in greater fitness. PRDM9 is also one of the fastest evolving genes http://www.sciencedi...168952511000175 doesn't show the full article but still interesting to read the shown parts.


    Due to the potential for the rate of evolution to change over time due to some of these mechanisms (and probably others too), maybe evolution could be describe as capable of real-time learning (in a sense).




    Its an interesting thought, but I think we do need to have caution here. To suggest that evolution can "improve" upon itself, brings into question what is actually an improvement. Also, evolution shows that "improvement" under one set of conditions may not be an "improvement" in another. So improving upon itself may be an "improvement", but change the conditions, and it is no longer an "improvement".


    Increasing mutation rates are more likely to cause deleterious results than positive results. So, in an scenario of increased stress, does an increase in mutation rate make sense? How does this relate to fitness? When exposed to increased stress, does the increase in mutation rate simply reveal a weakness in a particular biological system?

  4. Your logic sounds expensive in a biological context. It would cost more in evolutionary terms to stifle sexual desire than it would to redirect or broaden it.




    My thoughts are along this line and it goes along with iNow's comment that, "It's possible that a desire for sex was selected more prominently than a desire for sex with opposite sex members." It is a bit of a conjecture, but sexual drive is among the strongest, if not the strongest, natural drives of the animal world for obvious reasons. This would suggest that it is very much hard wired, and to rewire to a lack of drive would require much greater change at the genetic level. But, a redirection of the drive may require very little, if anything, at the genetic level. It could be entirely a product of the environment in which the fetus develops.

  5. I am not being petty. You have not used the term correctly. The pettiness is firmly from your side. You can not compare fitness of two species mathematically or conceptually.


    And your simple logic is still flawed. Last time I checked, hammers are not a natural occurance. There are multiple examples of how megafauna is actually the most vulnerable in the face of environmental pressures.


    i can back this up with simple logic


    we have 2 creatures

    one is an amoeba small single celled tiny

    the other is a elephant


    we take a hammer and hit both with said hammer repeatedly

    the amoeba survives the first 25 hits, but eventually goes "splat"

    the elephant survives the first 38 hits then gores and tramples out intrepid research intern

    (the elephant is relevantly unharmed, the inters was weak, it has a small bruise in its side)

    the intern also survives after 22 surgeries, and an extended hospital stay


    yes it is an extreme example

    but dose this get the point across

    big things are harder to kill, because they are big,

    as in bigger then you are, as in if you attach them you go "splat"


    also you know what i meant, dont be petty, we can compare the fitness of two species, not mathematically, but conceptually

  6. Here is something to ponder:

    "Meteoroids slamming against the atmospheres of alien worlds could add organic gases that make them look inhabited by life even if they are not, researchers say."


    So even if the Mars Rover is successful in finding organic molecules, their presence would not necessarily be indicative of past or present (bio)chemical activity on the planet.


    Not entirely true. If you read further into the article that you linked to below, it states that this cannot account for the levels of methane seen on Mars. We are far past the era of heavy bombardment in our solar system. There is far less organic mater raining in from space presently than in the early solar system. There is still influx of organics from micrometeorites, but still not enough to explain all the methane observed in the Martian atmosphere.


    This may be an issue for the extra-solar search for life. But i think there are ways around this.

  7. but larger is better fitting


    if your larger, you can:

    eat the smaller ones,



    This does not equate to fitness in a biological sense. You have failed to understand what fitness means, as was pointed out earlier.



    if your larger...

    are less susceptible to destruction due to damage,


    Not at all true. Being larger does not make you more resilient. There are many small and simple organisms that can withstand extremes in environment (radiation, heat, cold, salinity) that would instantly kill more complex life forms. There are many "simple" organisms that can regenerate lost limbs; like starfish or earthworms. Can a lion or shark do that?



    if your larger...

    have space for redundant systems,



    Again, not at all true. Do you have proof to back up this claim?

    simply put have more of everything

    MEANING you will out compete the smaller organisms


    its like the arms race:

    bigger is better

    smarter is better

    tougher is better


    thus it is inevitable if you think about it in terms of natural selection

    the "fittest" individual will become dominant

    and being bigger is fitter, simply because the little things cant harm you as much




    You have a very strong misunderstanding of fitness and what it means. You are comparing different species when using the term fitness. But fitness (biological terminology) can only be properly applied and determined for an individual within a population of the same species!

  8. The burden is not for science to prove the non-existence of God (as your thread title asks). This is not a proper line of inquiry. The burden is to find verifiable evidence to prove the existence of God. Which, to this day, there is none. I don't suspect there will ever be any such evidence. Gaps in understanding do not equate to evidence; the gaps never have and never will be evidence no matter how large or how small the gaps might be.



    On serious note, I think cloning and human genetic engineering are a long way off for the general populous. The technology is emergent, still buggy and hideously expensive. Sure, some extremely promising developments, such as stem cell therapy for type 1 diabetes look to be coming through within my generation, but "Repo man" is still well in the realms of science fiction. In any case, with half the species still earning less than two dollars a day, wholesale evolution of the species via genetic engineering seems unlikely.


    I don't want to derail the topic too much, but the economics of this type of biotech is of great concern to me. I am one who feels that we often do not pursue technology hard enough or fast enough. But there are areas that need pause and caution. The fact is that 99.9% of the human population will not be able to afford this kind of technology. Not only will the .1% have the financial advantage, and educational advantage from first schooling through the highest degrees, but they could, in the future, have a true pedigree of definable superiority. It can be argued that the disparity in society today can be overcome by any individual (debateable, but still somewhat true). But what if someone holds a piece of paper that shows that they superior at a genetic level? It reads like a distopian cyberpunk novel but, in my opinion, that future is not too distant.

  10. I am not the only one out there, I just showed the consequences of this way of thinking and I was outspoken to state things as they are, try stopping them if you can.


    There is no need to stop anything that hasn't actually gone anywhere.


    No one is attacking science, the scientific method is not all there is and scientists can go on believing that the things which they deal with really exists out there independent of the human mind when all evidence contradicts that belief. Mysticism is not what you do sitting in air conditioner rooms and its not subjective as many of them think, it deals with the real physical world and there is an objective world of God out there, the cosmos is very different than you think.


    I don't get your point at all. You are, in fact attacking science, and any form of evidenced based investigation by trying to convince everybody that everything is an illusion. That everything is unreal. It has been shown over and over and over, that reality exists without humans and will continue to do so long after we are gone. To say differently is zealotry, no other way around it. Nobody can reason with zealots, they will ignore facts to the their last bitter breath, just because they have to! They have so much time, energy, and conviction behind their beliefs, that to recognize the truth, that they are wrong in every measure, means the destruction of ones self. So its better to live in the dark and keep on preaching...


    Also, since you are so convinced of your position, it makes no sense for you to do what you are doing right now! None! Zero! As in no sense what so ever! You wouldn't have a job, you wouldn't have a computer, you wouldn't be typing out nonsense day after day. You would be simply enjoying your fantasy of a different "real". But you are not, why is that? Is it for the same reason you haven't published your own reality shattering paper? I bet it is.



    With all your Phds, can you raise the dead from the grave?


    No, and neither can you or anyone or anything else.


    Of Corpses and Gold: Materials for the Study of the Vet la and the Ro langs: Michael Walter



    "All these processes are based on a manipulation of prana, which is concentrated and directed by recitation of mantra, service to spiritual beings, etc.22"


    They don't view their world as made of quarks, protons, electrons etc. Their world-view is different and there is lot to learn from them.




    Zombies?! Are we really talking about zombies now? Can you please show me one? I bet you can't, and never will. But I am being open minded to the idea, so please, can I see one? Somebody most likely has one captured in a cage somewhere, right?


    This is mysticism, mysticism is not something which happens only in our heads, it deals with the noumenon, the world existing independent of the human minds. Why should I enforce myself to think about this world based on a narrow mind and think in only one way? I am not going to go by your rules, there is a lot to learn from different cultures who have more knowledge about the cosmos than anyone else.


    This is another ironic statement by you. You are the one who is thinking only one way! You have done nothing but that, and it is a very narrow process. You think you have opened up, but anybody who reads this thread will realize that the opposite is true. You provide nothing new, you just repeat, repeat, repeat. It is the very definition of a limited thought process. You may not want to go by the rules of reality and science, but by the same token, why would anybody go by your fanciful and narrow rules?

  11. So there is no way an eye (or genes, or the creature - all metaphorical) can 'know' that the screen should be transparent?


    And while I am here, I always wanted to know if this is true - they used to say that if you take a cow and pull its left eye off, then pull its cub's left eye off, then its cub's cub's eye off and so on and so on.. Eventually over a number of generations you will get a cow with only one right eye. Do you think it could be true? Does it mean that genes have an influence from external conditions?


    Correct, there is no "knowing" involved. It just happens that a clear lens is advantageous to the individual. There could be an environment were a completely transparent lens is a disadvantage too.


    If you pull out the eye, it does not change the genetics. The genes will still code for two eyes, that will not change. There is not influence from external conditions, or at least not in the way you posed the question.

  12. Oh no! What's this!? http://prl.aps.org/abstract/PRL/v109/i10/e100404 Another study that shows how the unknown reality of antiquated quantum theory, scripture, and misguided believers is in error (and the first has far more validity then the second two which have none). A study that shows that the unknown reality is not that unknowable. Another new study that weighs heavily in favor of scientific realism. A study that directly addresses the metaphysical questions brought about by Heisenbergs principle, by showing that you can indeed observe the quantum world without adding uncertainty.


    The only thing increasing in uncertainty is the validity of Bernard D'Espagnat's claim based on old, erroneous, quantum mechanical theory. The guys who did the research are physicists too! No ancient scriptures required, no "God" either.

  13. Perception of personal value and success. A severe disconnect between our daily activities the natural world in which we all evolved; the artificial constructs of modern society.


    There is little idle time to think about ones failure, when most of ones time is consumed by meeting very basic necessities. You simply don't have the mental latitude when all your energy is invested in existing to see another day.

  14. I am just so thoroughly disgusted with these politicians. Are they seriously trying to illicit civil war? What a bunch of dipsh*ts. There is no other way to describe them. These are the same people who point there fingers at certain areas of the word as examples of barbarism, incivility, and religious fananticism. Yet, under the slightest hardship, that absolutely pales in comparison to these other areas, they advocate armed revolution? Seriously, WTF?!


    Are they suggesting that if everybody does not vote their way, we will end up like Syria? Talk about the epitome of fear mongering. I am willing to bet they will dive lower, before all this plays out.


    The people that support these politicians either conveniently ignore what the politicians advocate, or they actually believe in the rhetoric. They are massing enough weapons to start a small war, building bomb shelters in their back yards, and not wanting see their "investments" in either go to waste. Do these people have any idea what actually happens in war?


    There = their


    Sorry, stupid typo on phone.

  15. Sorry, by any standard, scripture is not evidence. If it was, all scripture across all religions of all people would be identical. They are not. Even if you can draw parallels, they still do not count as evidence. These facts are made clear by Flying S. Monster, which resides in all of us.


    Lots of preaching here, 9/10ths of this post equate to nothing more, very lacking in actual substance. Lots of philosophical agruments that are old and tired and have been shown to be of no value to your position. Any 12 year old can play these mind questions.


    In total there is nothing new here, you are not at all close to making a convincing argument, so you rehash you previous posts and stand on a podium and preach.


    Your posts are coming off more and more like rants.

  16. There is a lot of area to cover here by your questions. The simplest answer is just what your brother said, "over time". You can get a point mutation that can alter a gene or expression of the gene so that there is a very slight phenotypic change. This change may give an individual an advantage, that ultimately realates to greater reproductive success over its peers. As such, this altered gene increases it frequency in a given population. Over time, given enough mutations, new structures emerge.


    This is a very simplistic view. There is no way to cover much more than the very basics in a thread. This basic info will not be thorough enough to answer all your questions. I suggest that you google search Berkley University History of Evolution. They have a great website set up that explains evolution and answers many of your questions.


    Sorry, a better search is Berkley Evolution 101. Great resource with other links too. Also look up evolution of the eye and evolution of ears.

  17. Yes, this is a real question, no I'm not trolling.


    I heard somewhere the reason why there are gay people is because of natural selection's response to overpopulation. I don't know if that's true or not.


    Since a vast majority of the lgbt do not procreate, I doubt that natural selection has anything to do with it. Even if one could show that being "gay" increased survivability due to overpopulation (and as pointed out already, I can't think of a single mechanism that would support this), the genetics would not be passed to the next generation.

  18. It still begs the question as to why you have not published your own paper that will rock the foundations of humanity and everything we know. I am not the one making extrodinary claims, you are. Realsim is not dead in any sense.


    You keep making references to the consequences of this earth shattering claim. What exactly are those consequences?


    You seem to be getting more and more angry and hostile. Why is that?

  19. Interesting.




    Since 1500 only 869 extinctions have actually been recorded. The estimated natural rate of extinction is 1 per million species per year. We know of around 2 million of the estimated 5 - 50 million species on the planet so we'll use the 2 million figure. So with natural rates and 2 million species we would expect 1,000 species to become extinct since 1500 due to purely natural causes. The official figure is 869 so frankly I'm having trouble seeing a problem here. (Or at least finding reasonable grounds to believe that anybody could come up with a sensible estimate)




    Not sure where you get those numbers from. There are some seriously flawed assumptions in your simple maths, and there are erroneous numbers in those maths. You assume extinction is linear, which obviously will not be the case.


    How about; out of 44,838 species accessed (these are known species not an estimate, as in actual numbers!) 905 are extinct, and ~17,000 are threatened with extinction. The number of extinct species of the 44,838 was 784 in 2006 and is now 905. That is 121 newly extinct species out of 44,838 in a span of 6 years!


    So why don't you run those maths again. The results are very, very, very different than what you propose to support your position. The rate is far, far, far greater than background. You might want to study up on population ecology and population genetics while you are at it.

  20. What if we were to change the syllogism slightly:


    DNA is a code

    All codes that we know the origin of were designed

    So, DNA was designed


    This is a logical proof that DNA was designed. Could it then be possible that evolution was the designer? Albeit a mindless designer. After all, it mindlessly created all the diversity of life from a single cell. Is it such a leap to say that it also created DNA?



    Designer implies intent. Designer implies higher authority. So, no, I don't think so. I also think that "mindless designer" is a bit of an oxymoron. Also, there are ideas that life arose many times before it got it "right". So it wouldn't just be "the" or "a" designer.

  21. This is exactly what it leads to. To me, the difference between the two is obvious--one in fact does occur naturally while the other does not. To simply assert that goddidit regarding dna is a non-answer, and it explains nothing Thus, we should never stop looking for naturalistic explanations. However, I can't deny the accuracy of the analogy and the inductive value of the argument. Given this, should we believe that dna was created by a mind until a better, naturalistic explanation is found? Or have we already discovered the better explanation--evolution. Is it reasonable to assume that DNA evolved over time given our current evidence for evolution, or would this be as unjustified as the god explanation?


    If the syllogism is sound, then it boils down to two choices. Which argument is stronger--the inductive value of the 'codes from mind' argument or the scientific evidence that DNA came about through evolution? As a naturalist I reject all supernatural explanations, but in this case am I justified in doing so?


    So many questions...this would be so much easier with a logical disproof of the argument!


    How about the level of "junk" that is in our DNA? No code created by a mind, would have the percentage of noncoding sequences found in our DNA, or any other animal for that matter. It would not make sense for it to be there. This is where the inductive argument loses all value. You may also want to point out, that any truly inductive process leaves room for a false conclusion.


    Not that all noncoding sequences lack function, many serve as regulatory mechanisms for example. But there still appears to be large sections of our DNA that have zero function. They don't regulate, and they do not encode for proteins. Ask them to explain that.


    There may be some leverage with distinctions between terms like code and encode within biological terminology, but semantics are not usually the best level of argument.

  22. This is the second time you have made sweeping statements about me without reading or understanding what is being discussed here.


    What exactly am I misunderstanding? The paper deals with scientific realism and whether quantum mechanics can be interpreted as an epistemic state (state of knowledege) or ontic state (state of reality). How exactly is this not relevant?


    I gave a link to that blog not to defend the claims of that physicist blogger but to enlighten you that, that paper is surrounded with controversies and I very well know that a personal rant on a blog cannot be evidence of anything, earlier you misunderstood me and claimed that I am doing disservice to humanity and I showed you how some crazy thinkers try to epistemologically connect mysticism with QM which leads all sorts of pseudo-scientific approaches and nonsense, now again you've misunderstood my posts. I very well knew about this paper even before you posted about this and so I gave that particular link to make you aware of the confusions dealing with that paper and I am not trying to hide anything here and as you can see your three more bloggers too interpret the paper in their own ways and make conclusions about that paper and even you're using that paper in your own way to justify your claims.


    I did not make any statements outside of what is evidenced from your response. If you knew so much about the paper, why then did you respond with a blog post that is in error as it miss-interprets the results of the authors of the paper? Why did you not respond with a paper that refutes? If it is so controversial, there is bound to be mountains of published rebuttals. Where are the published results that refute? FYI, there is always some controversy around any published paper, especially ones that break new ground. That is part of the scientific process. You are not revealing anything to me or anybody else here. Controversy is to be expected and is welcomed.




    All this confusion is because the auhors have merged a lot of separate interpretations into one and have used bad terminologies and its obscure as to what the assumptions of their theorem is and what its conclusions are. This is theoretical physics so I advice you take this to a separate thread and clear up the misconceptions and then perform experiments based on that theorem and try to post it as a refutation to Bernard D'Espagnat's claims and let us see if your paper refutes Bernard's claims or not. As I said I don't trust anyone of those bloggers.


    No no, the responsibility is on you to provide recent (not antiquated, erroneous interpretations - as juanrga has pointed out to you multiple, multiple times) evidence in support of your and Bernard D'Espagnat's claims. You have yet to do that, or this thread would have died a long time ago, and all would be reveling in your accomplishments. So, were is your published paper? If you are so certain, and have irrefutable evidence (which is what you are trying to make us believe) then why waste time here? It is not my responsibility, all I did was post links to relevant material, which contrasts your view. Sorry, I thought that was what good science and healthy debate was about. It is your responsibility, you are the one making extraordinary claims, were is your extraordinary evidence? Theoretical physics bare far more weight than philosophical twaddle.


    If you can't differentiate between a fact claim and a claim which is mere speculation then its not my problem, you're either ignorant or misinformed or you're posting your biased beliefs as facts. One of those bloggers namely Matt leifer makes conclusions about that paper in support of Bernard's claim and I could have easily used that as supporting Bernard's claims but I am not going to do that because it has not been experimentally established as fact and a blog post cannot be termed as scientific evidence for something. I very well said in the beginning itself let's not go there.


    What about the paper itself? How does that paper support the claims of Bernard D'Espagnat's? Matt Lefier does not change the results of the paper, he has simply explained the results. Therefor, the paper should support your position and that of Bernard D'Espagnat's. There are other scientists who feel this paper has even greater significance in support of realism, but I haven't felt the need to post their comments. At any level, it all points heavily in favor of scientific realism. Scientific realism is what we are discussing, correct? Or are you going to insult me and claim this isn't relevant, or that I am ignorant, or that I misinterpret?

  23. When you look at what the GOP has done in several states to try to prevent voter turn out of people of a certain demographic, it is shocking. Just look at what they tried to do in Ohio. So not only has our democracy been hijacked by corporate dollars, but the Republican party is trying to fix the elections. Their sole goal is to limit Obama to one term at the expense of everything else. Liberty and democracy my ass. Not only do you have politicians from the far right (now the mainstream right) calling for armed revolution, there are people willing to carry it out.









    We already know what side of the political fence these guys sit.




    Whats the chance they claim to be "Christians" too?

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