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Evolution has never been observed

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I don't see any way one could demonstrate that the output of that program was not intentionally designed. Are you attempting to change the definition to fit your intentions?

I dunno. Have you given me a definition clear enough to tell? I can't know if I'm changing the definition until I know exactly what the definition states.

 

You will find that the program re-uses information (novels, the Bible, etc) for a different function. Do you think that "functional information," properly defined, cannot be used for more than one function? Can it only be used for the one function the designer intended?

 

How broad must the "function" be? I mean, I could say "this has the function of creating this specific protein to metabolize this one chemical to create energy for this cell," or I could say "this has the function of generating food," or I could say "it has the function of keeping this cell alive." If we choose the most specific definition, what if it can also do something slightly different -- like, say, metabolize something else, just less efficiently.

 

How narrowly defined is "intent"?

 

I also don't see any way these false arguments help improve the case for evolutionary theory. The theory is in crisis because it does not conform with what it posits. It posits that the processes conform to methodological naturalism but the advocates cannot show how it obtains the molecular and informational order required to conform with entropy laws. It posits that natural selection drives a continual pathway of thousands upon thousands of stepwise changes but no pathway greater than 3 steps has been identified.

What is in question is whether the arguments are, in fact, false. If they are not, then your thesis is falsified.

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Don't write[or speak or think] nonsense. DNA do not contain any information. That are simply molecules. Like an other. They do not use information to replicate. The replicate because they react with other chemicals. If it reacts with the right chemicals it replicates.

Life happened...then mutated then adapted then evolved and so on and so on until time=now and you are now reading this.

 

...why do the rules tell me not to shout at you for using religion?

 

Here is a simple description of the process. Please note that they use "genetic information" as well as the other terms to describe the process.

 

Here is another. There are thousands of websites that confirm my description. One of the most difficult aspects of the race to discover the structure of DNA was the fact that most researchers were looking for a system more akin to your description. It was Crick who posited that the patterns responsible to determining protein sequences was actually encoded into a system that was independent of chemical affinity and therefore capable of storing any pattern of sequences that allowed his team to eventually succeed.

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Genetic info' = not real info

 

Genes are combinations nucleobases. Nucleobases are chemicals. Genes are therefore simply chemicals. As genes make DNA then DNA is just a complex molecule. DNA = chemical not info

Gene = Chemical not info

 

Information is facts and words and stuff.

Edited by ProcuratorIncendia

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Skeptic made the claim that function does not require intent, and I responded that his statement has not been established. It is his burden to prove. When the cause of functional systems is established, we find intentioned design, thus it is reasonable to conclude that function requires intent until it is shown otherwise.

 

On the contrary, the thread is entitled "Evolution has never been observed," and you have taken up the banner of that contention, so any claim about design is what needs to be supported. Plus, your defense using the claim that we can assume functional design is yet another logical fallacy, using circular logic.

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On the contrary, the thread is entitled "Evolution has never been observed," and you have taken up the banner of that contention, so any claim about design is what needs to be supported. Plus, your defense using the claim that we can assume functional design is yet another logical fallacy, using circular logic.

 

The discussion regarding intent was independent of the broader thread context which as you noted is Evolution has never been observed. My contention that evolution (the idea that evolutionary processes account for all observed biological diversity) has not been established, is the what I need to support. Skeptic on the other hand claimed that function does not require intent. He offered no support for his claim and I'm fairly certain that he never will. Only to illustrate the challenge skeptic is facing with his speculation, did I responded as I did.

 

I am quite willing to support the claims I make including that evolutionary theory has not been demonstrated. Two of the many issues that have been described here are one, the incongruence evolutionary theory has with the wider sense of entropy laws and the tendency to disorder of all physical systems under the influence of random processes for all kinds of order when inputs and outputs are included, and two, the fact that evolutionary pathways greater than 3 steps have not been confirmed despite the rigorous experimental attempts to discover them and the fact that if the theory is correct as posited, there would have to be millions and millions of pathways many thousands of steps in length.

Edited by cypress

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...stop supporting that...join us...join uusss...one of us...one of us...join the evolution side...we have cookies shaped like dinosaurs...

...hey cypress...Did you ignore my post again?

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The discussion regarding intent was independent of the broader thread context which as you noted is Evolution has never been observed. My contention that evolution (the idea that evolutionary processes account for all observed biological diversity) has not been established, is the what I need to support. Skeptic on the other hand claimed that function does not require intent. He offered no support for his claim and I'm fairly certain that he never will. Only to illustrate the challenge skeptic is facing with his speculation, did I responded as I did.

 

Even if one were to accept that burden of proof, how could one support the claim in light of your failing to provide adequate definitions of terms like functional information, or intent? Is a waterfall functional?

 

I am quite willing to support the claims I make including that evolutionary theory has not been demonstrated. Two of the many issues that have been described here are one, the incongruence evolutionary theory has with the wider sense of entropy laws and the tendency to disorder of all physical systems under the influence of random processes for all kinds of order when inputs and outputs are included, and two, the fact that evolutionary pathways greater than 3 steps have not been confirmed despite the rigorous experimental attempts to discover them and the fact that if the theory is correct as posited, there would have to be millions and millions of pathways many thousands of steps in length.

 

"Not been demonstrated" is an easy claim when you are free to move the bar of what you consider to be a demonstration, or hold evolution to a different standard than other aspects of science, or make claims implying that evolution violates the laws of thermodynamics or nonexistent laws of information theory.

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cypress, could you point me to some peer-reviewed literature in which the definition of "functional information" is discussed? Perhaps that will answer our questions.

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I have never seen proper demonstration that function does not require intent in the sense Skeptic suggests. Since it is unknown if the entire universe has a materialistic cause or designed , it seems impossible at this point to demonstrate things and processes we call natural function without intent.

 

That's an appeal to ignorance, a demonstration of ignorance, and in post 213 just before yours that you read, I gave an example (aspirin pill) of something that has a function other than the intended function, which was only discovered later. Thus I proved it absolutely positively as sure as it is possible to prove anything (proof by example, only one example is needed).

 

I'm actually rather amused someone would think that things would magically violate the laws of nature to do different things just because someone intended it differently, didn't intend it, or whatever else they may think. Do you think you're God or something, above the laws of physics?

 

And if you don't think I proved it, it is not even my burden of proof, since you are the one who's trying to wiggle out of things by claiming special excemptions for things due to being functional or not (which you have yet to even define, and yes, I do mean in a clear and non-circular way, so I couldn't take on the burden of proof if I wanted to unless you want to concede the definition of functional to my choice of definition).

 

As to whether there's some greater cause/intent/design, if so than all processes would have intent and design, would they not? Which would of course make such meaningless since it describes everything.

 

 

Genetic info' = not real info

 

Genes are combinations nucleobases. Nucleobases are chemicals. Genes are therefore simply chemicals. As genes make DNA then DNA is just a complex molecule. DNA = chemical not info

Gene = Chemical not info

 

Information is facts and words and stuff.

 

DNA is a molecule that contains information. It is both a chemical and a string of information. It is not a message though, at least not in the usual sense.

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It does not contain any information.

 

Definition of information:

Facts provided or learned about something or someone.

DNA is a molecule that contains genes. Genes are made of nucleobases which are also chemicals. Therefore DNA is simply a chemical.

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Crystal systems can self replicate. natural-crystal-3.jpg The crystal type of self replication is based on energy considerations and the way the atoms stack within the crystal lattice. If we start to add additional atoms to the base atoms we can get color changes and new growth habits. Life does this with molecular chunks called genes but it is also based on energy considerations.

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Even if one were to accept that burden of proof, how could one support the claim in light of your failing to provide adequate definitions of terms like functional information, or intent? Is a waterfall functional?

 

I have provided adequate definitions for functional information by way of formulas, descriptions, and examples and I described what I intended when I chose the word intent. The fact that Skeptic chose a meaning other than I intended is on him to explain. I predict skeptic will continue to shirk the responsibility, but to insist that I prove a claim I that was thrust upon me by a poster who chose a different meaning seems silly. Skeptic made the claim that function does not require intent and I called him on it. He will, in all likelihood, not answer the call but instead continue to shift the burden to others or change up what he meant by intent as he did in his most recent post.

 

"Not been demonstrated" is an easy claim when you are free to move the bar of what you consider to be a demonstration, or hold evolution to a different standard than other aspects of science, or make claims implying that evolution violates the laws of thermodynamics or nonexistent laws of information theory.

 

The real issue is that Evolutionary theory makes an incredible grand claim that it explains all of biological diversity and the reality is that advocates of the theory, despite the hundred and fifty plus years attempting to do so, are unable to demonstrate this grand claim. Others are fond of pointing out that incredible claims require incredible evidence and this evidence seems to be missing.

 

cypress, could you point me to some peer-reviewed literature in which the definition of "functional information" is discussed? Perhaps that will answer our questions.

 

Help me understand the precise question you have. Provide me more information so I can narrow down my search. Help me focus on the precise issue rather than all of the possible issues that exist. Show me where you don't get that an an instruction manual or the programming in a computer control system are examples of functional information, whereas a weather report eliminates alternatives, and is therefore information, but it is not directly functional. With good understanding of your specific issue I may be able to help you.

Edited by cypress

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I have provided adequate definitions for functional information by way of formulas, descriptions, and examples and I described what I intended when I chose the word intent. The fact that Skeptic chose a meaning other than I intended is on him to explain. I predict skeptic will continue to shirk the responsibility, but to insist that I prove a claim I that was thrust upon me by a poster who chose a different meaning seems silly. Skeptic made the claim that function does not require intent and I called him on it. He will, in all likelihood, not answer the call but instead continue to shift the burden to others or change up what he meant by intent as he did in his most recent post.

 

I'm not the only one telling you your definitions are inadequate. They are vague and can be twisted to mean different things, which is not consistent with the definition of definition.

 

 

The real issue is that Evolutionary theory makes an incredible grand claim that it explains all of biological diversity and the reality is that advocates of the theory, despite the hundred and fifty plus years attempting to do so, are unable to demonstrate this grand claim. Others are fond of pointing out that incredible claims require incredible evidence and this evidence seems to be missing.

 

Gravity makes grand claims as well, but we do not do experimentation to confirm that it explains the trajectory of every object in freefall. You see a rock fall, or has fallen, but cannot actually prove that it was gravity that acted upon it. Yet it is not unreasonable to accept that it did, because of other experimentation. However, it is not guaranteed that any historical incident involving gravity will leave sufficient evidence that would confirm Newton's equation, because there is no guarantee that evidence will persist. It is an unreasonable demand to require it.

 

Your attack on evolution is reminiscent of the "god of the gaps" argument. It is intellectually bankrupt.

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Right, but that doesn't answer the question. Suppose, perhaps, I have milling machine instructions that can also function as rather excellent poetry, or descriptive text that also functions as the key to an encryption algorithm. The amount of "functional" information is different depending on the purpose for which I use the information; for example, some of the milling machine instructions might make terrible poetry, but a large chunk in the middle has won several awards from literary journals.

 

Information that simultaneously describes multiple outcomes or states is more informative than information that describes only one by virtue of the formula. Your example of functional information that also describes poetry contains more information than an alternate instruction set that describes the milling machine outcome.

 

Given the vagueness of your definition, I'd suggest a formula. Could you perhaps try?

 

Previously offered. Here it is once again. Information is a description of state or outcome. The amount of information, I = -logP where P is the probability of the set of outcomes or states described by the information. The formula is unchanged regardless of the kind of information being measured.

 

Gravity makes grand claims as well, but we do not do experimentation to confirm that it explains the trajectory of every object in freefall. You see a rock fall, or has fallen, but cannot actually prove that it was gravity that acted upon it. Yet it is not unreasonable to accept that it did, because of other experimentation. However, it is not guaranteed that any historical incident involving gravity will leave sufficient evidence that would confirm Newton's equation, because there is no guarantee that evidence will persist. It is an unreasonable demand to require it.

 

We have done and continue to do several experiments to confirm that the theory of gravity explains observed trajectories, and every time the experiment is done properly, the theory is confirmed. Near my home is a Gravitational Wave Observatory. It has existed for about 20 years now. The purpose is to confirm the presence of gravitational waves as predicted by the modern theory of general relativity as applied to gravity. Thus far they have not succeeded. The theory of gravity does make grand claims and but it's grandest claims are confirmed while some of the implications are still yet to be understood.

 

Evolution, the idea that idea that all biological diversity is explained by evolutionary theory, its fundamental premise, the basic idea, has yet to be demonstrated, and this is very different than the case of gravitational theory who's basic idea is confirmed, and is in fact confirmed daily by students across the world.

 

Your attack on evolution is reminiscent of the "god of the gaps" argument. It is intellectually bankrupt.

 

You are changing my argument and committing a logical fallacy, which is unusual for you. I am not saying that because evolution has not been confirmed therefore there is a creator who made life and caused all diversity. Is there something wrong with admitting where we are at with a theory,and on that basis, suggest that other avenues be explored?

 

If on the other hand I am wrong and there have been numerous four and greater step evolutionary pathways verified, I would like to review them. If someone has verified that material processes alone acting on a system do generate higher molecular and information order as measured by probability and entropy when inputs and outputs are considered (sorry pioneer, crystals are not examples of this, I bet if you went through the equations you would see why) I would be interested in that verification also.

 

When a backyard engineer offers a design for an engine that violates entropy laws as applied to thermodynamics, we dismiss him, we don't say, "wait perhaps some day he will show how entropy laws don't apply to his device", but when the subject is molecular order and the information encoded into the sequences of molecules unencumbered by the deterministic nature of chemical bonding affinities many here wish to give the idea that formation of these sequences can occur spontaneously over time by natural processes without due consideration or even an inkling of source for the massive increase in molecular and information order, a pass. They want to imagine that thermodynamic order, the distribution of energy among the discrete states can magically be substituted for molecular order, the distribution of molecules among spacial dimension, or information order, the distribution of syntactical characters amongst the discrete set of characters containing the information, but they don't want to have to demonstrate that it is acualized.

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Information that simultaneously describes multiple outcomes or states is more informative than information that describes only one by virtue of the formula. Your example of functional information that also describes poetry contains more information than an alternate instruction set that describes the milling machine outcome.

But the poetry wasn't part of the original intent of the designer of the system.

 

Does this mean we'd have to discover every possible function of a piece of information before we could quantify how much functional information it contains? That seems impossible.

 

Also, how constrained is "function"? We could say that "functional" information creates a functional system... but how functional must it be? For example, the human genome encodes certain functional information that results in allergic reactions, which can kill you. Also, suppose a gene that metabolizes something important is mutated and now merely uses up the cell's energy. Couldn't we call that its "function"? If not, why not? We can't argue that it's not functional because it doesn't benefit the cell, because the genes that cause your anaphylactic shock certainly are functional, but they kill you. We can't argue that it's not functional because it doesn't make anything, because it could quite possibly be making some complex protein the cell doesn't need.

 

So, who draws the barrier for function?

 

Previously offered. Here it is once again. Information is a description of state or outcome. The amount of information, I = -logP where P is the probability of the set of outcomes or states described by the information. The formula is unchanged regardless of the kind of information being measured.

So then the amount of functional information is equal to the amount of regular information? That doesn't make sense.

 

Help me understand the precise question you have. Provide me more information so I can narrow down my search. Help me focus on the precise issue rather than all of the possible issues that exist. Show me where you don't get that an an instruction manual or the programming in a computer control system are examples of functional information, whereas a weather report eliminates alternatives, and is therefore information, but it is not directly functional. With good understanding of your specific issue I may be able to help you.

I want a peer-reviewed article that discusses the nature of functional information. One that merely discusses what is required for information to be "functional" would be a great starting point.

 

Anyway... aren't weather reports functional, since they serve the function of presenting specific information to my eyes that make me aware of the weather?

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Carbonyl Sulphide mediated prebiotic peptide formation

 

The above link is to a paper concerning spontaneous synthesis of peptides in aqueous solution via en vitro non-enzymatic catalysis. If you're not a member of the magazine, the abstract should be enough. It shows that spontaneous, natural polymerization of amino acids is not outside the realm of possibility. Carbonyl sulphide is abundant in waters surrounding volcanic thermal vents.

 

spontaneous polymerization and microstructure...

 

This link is to an article in which highly branched polymers of n-butyl acrylate are synthesized without initiators at 180 C. One of the possible mechanisms could likely involve radical self-initiation. This would be highly disfavored by entropy, yet it still happens.

 

Physical laws acting on chemistry don't seem to work the way you imagine. As you are aware, chemical reactions are such that products that are more stable in the environment form with regularity, while those that are unstable degrade. Complex irregular polymers don't fit this pattern, instead they seem to require pre-existing complexity to generate them and continual repair mechanisms to maintain them. They don't seem to form the way less complex stable molecules form. This observation is consistent with probability theorem and entropy laws. there does not seem to be much interest in admitting physical chemistry laws and aplying them to the notion of life from non-life.

 

Nothing could be further from the truth. Spontaneous synthesis of biomolecules from pre-biotics is one of the leading hot topics in physical chemistry today. There is a large movement in p-chem to find the reason for all amino acids having the L-configuration, as well as a large interest in non-enzymatic, pre-biotic catalysis. Here is an article from the American Chemical Society, Journal of Physical Chemistry B:

 

emergence of phospholipid superstructures

 

The article concerns the apparent organization of a homogeneous phospholipid micelle into a myelin like superstructure in about 240 minutes. Just give that another hundred million or two and what could happen?

 

Cypress, you have been asking for specific examples of the spontaneous generation of complex biomolecules. Here I have cited three examples from the peer reviewed literature. If you still need more conformation, I have barely scratched the surface of the host of similar articles and would be glad to cite more.

Edited by mississippichem

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But the poetry wasn't part of the original intent of the designer of the system.

 

Your example is hypothetical, were it an actualized or real example, would we know or even need to know the intent of the designer in order to calculate information content? Would it matter what the designer's intent was? I don't see any component in the formulas for intent. The measure of information does not seem to be a function of designer's intent.

 

Does this mean we'd have to discover every possible function of a piece of information before we could quantify how much functional information it contains? That seems impossible.

 

Determining every possible (energy, molecular, or information) state or outcome and then comparing the set of states that contains the current state but are otherwise probabilistically indeterminate from the current state to all the possibilities is perhaps one method of calculating the absolute value of entropy and then from that calculating the measure of absolute internal energy or molecular configuration or information, but I am not convinced that it is the only method. As you noted, the absolute entropy of a system is very difficult to determine, thus it is more useful to discuss changes in information entropy and changes in information. Should we say that entropy is not a useful concept since we don't know the absolute value of entropy in the universe? Clearly this is not the approach that is being taken.

 

Also, how constrained is "function"? We could say that "functional" information creates a functional system... but how functional must it be? For example, the human genome encodes certain functional information that results in allergic reactions, which can kill you. Also, suppose a gene that metabolizes something important is mutated and now merely uses up the cell's energy. Couldn't we call that its "function"? If not, why not? We can't argue that it's not functional because it doesn't benefit the cell, because the genes that cause your anaphylactic shock certainly are functional, but they kill you. We can't argue that it's not functional because it doesn't make anything, because it could quite possibly be making some complex protein the cell doesn't need.

 

I am surprised to learn that you don't understand what it means for a system to be functional vs. damaged or have diminished function. This question was raised before and answered. The answer resulted in Skeptic's attempt to change the meaning of my use of the word intent. But I am having difficulty understanding the relevance of the line of question in the first place. The information formulas do not contain a variable for degree of function so I am your critical approach makes no sense. It seems more of a diversion from the primary issue which is change in information entropy at the system level.

 

Damage or improvement to function only enters (indirectly) into the the measure if the change that results in damage or improvement represent changes in the probability of the set of outcomes that includes the actualized outcome, but since it is the probability that is important and not the degree of function of this outcome set, we need not consider degree of function. Random noise introduced into a closed ordered systems (including information sets) when integrated over the number of interactions, results in reduction in order and an increase in probability of the set of indistinguishable states. This is the very meaning of the entropy law. The only known ways to increase order of a system is to introduce additional order into the system or remove disorder from the system.

 

So, who draws the barrier for function?

 

Since function is not a component of the equations, as I described above, it seems irrelevant to the issue. Anyone can but it will make no difference. Physical laws simply don't care who defines what, they are what they are.

 

So then the amount of functional information is equal to the amount of regular information? That doesn't make sense.

 

The total amount of information is equal to the amount of information regardless of its kind. As described above there seems to be no need to split it out in order to make my point about entropy laws as applied to all order in this universe including information and molecular order.

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I have provided adequate definitions for functional information by way of formulas, descriptions, and examples and I described what I intended when I chose the word intent. The fact that Skeptic chose a meaning other than I intended is on him to explain. I predict skeptic will continue to shirk the responsibility, but to insist that I prove a claim I that was thrust upon me by a poster who chose a different meaning seems silly. Skeptic made the claim that function does not require intent and I called him on it. He will, in all likelihood, not answer the call but instead continue to shift the burden to others or change up what he meant by intent as he did in his most recent post.

 

So is your new claim that the intent of the aspirin pill was to reduce the chances of heart attacks even years before that was known to be a function they have? Or why exactly are you taking that as not being an example of a function that did not require intent?

 

OK, if you don't want to define functional, I will do it for you. If you disagree, then disagree by pointing out what is wrong with mine and giving your own definition.

Functional: Possesses certain attributes that allow it to be used in a certain arbitrary manner, called the function. The function may or may not be useful, may or may not be intended, and an object may have more than one function it may be used for. Whether something is functional or not depends as much on the arbitrarily chosen function as on the object itself.

 

"functional" is also a word used by certain creationists to require intent, as if things would violate the laws of nature because the all-mighty creationist didn't intend the object to do something. In this they use "functional" so that they can choose the attributes required of an object for them to allow it to be called functional, while simultaneously denying things created by non-intelligent processes function because there was no intent. In this sense, that word functions as a way to allow them to change an argument drastically but with a seemingly small and innocuous change.

 

Previously offered. Here it is once again. Information is a description of state or outcome. The amount of information, I = -logP where P is the probability of the set of outcomes or states described by the information. The formula is unchanged regardless of the kind of information being measured.

 

Ah, so "functional information" means "information"? Just what I suspected, just an extra word there so you can pretend it means something when you need it to.

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Evolution does have entropy...but info' entropy isn't it as PHYSICAL THINGS THAT ACTUALLY EXIST DON'T HAVE ANY REAL INFORMATION IN THEM AS INFORMATION IS AN INVENTION OF THE MIND!

 

Evolution has entropy in the form of genetic entropy. The genetic entropy effects evolution but allows it to happen.

 

http://blindinglight.wordpress.com/2007/05/15/genetic-entropy/

 

Are you happy now? No one was saying entropy did not apply to evolution...just that info' entropy did not apply to evolution.

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Your example is hypothetical, were it an actualized or real example, would we know or even need to know the intent of the designer in order to calculate information content? Would it matter what the designer's intent was? I don't see any component in the formulas for intent. The measure of information does not seem to be a function of designer's intent.

You said intent was necessary for function, back in post #219. It's only logical that something cannot be a function if it was not the original intent of the designer. Or is intent not necessary for function?

 

Determining every possible (energy, molecular, or information) state or outcome and then comparing the set of states that contains the current state but are otherwise probabilistically indeterminate from the current state to all the possibilities is perhaps one method of calculating the absolute value of entropy and then from that calculating the measure of absolute internal energy or molecular configuration or information, but I am not convinced that it is the only method. As you noted, the absolute entropy of a system is very difficult to determine, thus it is more useful to discuss changes in information entropy and changes in information. Should we say that entropy is not a useful concept since we don't know the absolute value of entropy in the universe? Clearly this is not the approach that is being taken.

How can you determine a change in information entropy if you don't know the multitude of functions for which that information can be used? For example, a change in the information might harm certain functions, but significantly improve other, unknown functions.

 

I am surprised to learn that you don't understand what it means for a system to be functional vs. damaged or have diminished function. This question was raised before and answered. The answer resulted in Skeptic's attempt to change the meaning of my use of the word intent. But I am having difficulty understanding the relevance of the line of question in the first place. The information formulas do not contain a variable for degree of function so I am your critical approach makes no sense. It seems more of a diversion from the primary issue which is change in information entropy at the system level.

 

Damage or improvement to function only enters (indirectly) into the the measure if the change that results in damage or improvement represent changes in the probability of the set of outcomes that includes the actualized outcome, but since it is the probability that is important and not the degree of function of this outcome set, we need not consider degree of function. Random noise introduced into a closed ordered systems (including information sets) when integrated over the number of interactions, results in reduction in order and an increase in probability of the set of indistinguishable states. This is the very meaning of the entropy law. The only known ways to increase order of a system is to introduce additional order into the system or remove disorder from the system.

 

Since function is not a component of the equations, as I described above, it seems irrelevant to the issue. Anyone can but it will make no difference. Physical laws simply don't care who defines what, they are what they are.

 

The total amount of information is equal to the amount of information regardless of its kind. As described above there seems to be no need to split it out in order to make my point about entropy laws as applied to all order in this universe including information and molecular order.

This is all very interesting, but it contradicts the very first scholarly definition of "functional information" that I found.

 

http://www.pnas.org/content/104/suppl.1/8574.full

 

"Degree of function" is a component of the formula. The formula is not the same as the general formula for quantity of information. And most importantly, the formula only measures functional information with respect to a specific function, not all possible functions. One cannot describe how much functional information a system has without specifying which function we are talking about.

 

You're using non-standard terminology. If you wish for us to understand your arguments, use accepted terminology, and be precise and specific with your explanations. If you want to use your own personal definitions and hypotheses, please be aware of rule 10.

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I am surprised to learn that you don't understand what it means for a system to be functional vs. damaged or have diminished function. This question was raised before and answered.

 

It was raised before and dodged. It was raised again and dodged again. All you do is define functional to mean functional, by which you seem to mean whatever you want to be functional is and whatever would be evidence for evolution isn't.

 

The answer resulted in Skeptic's attempt to change the meaning of my use of the word intent. But I am having difficulty understanding the relevance of the line of question in the first place.

 

Because you're hiding behind that word to pretend that evidence for evolution is meaningless because something is or isn't functional, but then you acknowledge that "functional" is a red herring and that you mean nothing by it. Did you think no one would notice or what?

 

The information formulas do not contain a variable for degree of function so I am your critical approach makes no sense. It seems more of a diversion from the primary issue which is change in information entropy at the system level.

 

So let's all drop the word "functional" then, it is nothing but a distraction. Information is information whether it is functional or not, and things do as the laws of physics say they do regardless of who intended what.

 

Damage or improvement to function only enters (indirectly) into the the measure if the change that results in damage or improvement represent changes in the probability of the set of outcomes that includes the actualized outcome, but since it is the probability that is important and not the degree of function of this outcome set, we need not consider degree of function. Random noise introduced into a closed ordered systems (including information sets) when integrated over the number of interactions, results in reduction in order and an increase in probability of the set of indistinguishable states. This is the very meaning of the entropy law. The only known ways to increase order of a system is to introduce additional order into the system or remove disorder from the system.

 

Ah, so by "functional information" did you mean something like "a string that in addition contains a certain attribute(s) which make a string having those attributes significantly less common than a string which does not"?

 

Since function is not a component of the equations, as I described above, it seems irrelevant to the issue. Anyone can but it will make no difference. Physical laws simply don't care who defines what, they are what they are.

 

Good, then have we seen the last of your using "functional" as an objection?

 

This is all very interesting, but it contradicts the very first scholarly definition of "functional information" that I found.

 

http://www.pnas.org/...ppl.1/8574.full

 

Interesting. Looks like it's just the same formula as for information, but with the probability of the information being instead the probability of its being better for a given function than a threshold. But I don't think we can use that here, not unless we care to calculate the odds of something of having a given function at or above a certain threshold.

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You said intent was necessary for function, back in post #219. It's only logical that something cannot be a function if it was not the original intent of the designer. Or is intent not necessary for function?

 

I am sorry to say that you misinterpreted what I said in #219. First of all I have not referenced "original intent" and have not been concerned with it. Now you too are changing my words and meanings. In #219, I was referring to Mr. Skeptic's use of the word intent as distinct from my use and commented further on his use of it and the difficulty with that use.

 

How can you determine a change in information entropy if you don't know the multitude of functions for which that information can be used? For example, a change in the information might harm certain functions, but significantly improve other, unknown functions.

 

Cumulative change is derived using calculus. As I noted before, absolute values for entropy are not required to derive cumulative change. Surely you are aware of this, as it is common practice. Since information formulas require an understanding of the probability of the described outcomes, I'm not sure where you are going with your concerns as the considerations you describe don't seem to figure into measures of total information content and information entropy. Quite frankly, I don't see any relevance to your questions.

 

This is all very interesting, but it contradicts the very first scholarly definition of "functional information" that I found.

 

http://www.pnas.org/content/104/suppl.1/8574.full

 

"Degree of function" is a component of the formula. The formula is not the same as the general formula for quantity of information. And most importantly, the formula only measures functional information with respect to a specific function, not all possible functions. One cannot describe how much functional information a system has without specifying which function we are talking about.

 

You're using non-standard terminology. If you wish for us to understand your arguments, use accepted terminology, and be precise and specific with your explanations. If you want to use your own personal definitions and hypotheses, please be aware of rule 10.

 

I don't see the contradiction and I believe I have used the term functional and information in an appropriate sense and with proper equations but unlike the article you identified, I have not attempted to isolate functional information alone and measure the information content according to a single specified function. I feel I am being quite precise in that my argument is concerned with the total change in information entropy as a result of deriving a system that also contains functional information. My specific argument does not rest on measurement of the amount of functional information alone. Since my argument is not limited to a single function or even just the functional information, I am having difficulty understanding why you are so focused on it. I would prefer you address the issue I raised which is the change in information entropy that must occur in generating new and additional information and most importantly the source of the increased order that must come into the system or pre-exist in the system. My argument is about all the information and the order contained within the system and the inputs and outputs.

 

I continue to be interested in your complaint about my use of the words function and functional information, but if you will be more clear and precise about your issue, I can address that specific point.

 

If you could describe from evolutionary theory the source of all forms of order that allows for the decrease in system entropy after all inputs and outputs are concerned I would be grateful.

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I don't see the contradiction and I believe I have used the term functional and information in an appropriate sense and with proper equations but unlike the article you identified, I have not attempted to isolate functional information alone and measure the information content according to a single specified function.

So you agree that your are using the term "functional information" in a way inconsistent with the scientific literature. Hence my understandable confusion.

 

I feel I am being quite precise in that my argument is concerned with the total change in information entropy as a result of deriving a system that also contains functional information. My specific argument does not rest on measurement of the amount of functional information alone.

So "functional information" is merely a red herring, and we can discard that part of the discussion and continue. Yes?

 

I continue to be interested in your complaint about my use of the words function and functional information, but if you will be more clear and precise about your issue, I can address that specific point.

My issue is that you have still not provided a definition that mathematically defines "function." You have defined "information," but not "functional information." But you say it doesn't matter, so we can move on.

 

If you could describe from evolutionary theory the source of all forms of order that allows for the decrease in system entropy after all inputs and outputs are concerned I would be grateful.

After all inputs and outputs are considered, there is no net decrease in entropy. The Sun is a great provider of net entropic increase. A local system can decrease entropy so long as the global system increases it, and the Sun certainly provides for us.

 

I know you've claimed we need to account for the "source of low entropy information" delivered to organisms, but you have not established that this is even necessary. The Sun does not have to deliver us low-entropy bricks of magical Entropilite. It merely delivers energy, while increasing net entropy.

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So you agree that your are using the term "functional information" in a way inconsistent with the scientific literature. Hence my understandable confusion.

 

No, I believe I am being consistent.

 

 

So "functional information" is merely a red herring, and we can discard that part of the discussion and continue. Yes?

 

No, it is significant in that my examples were of systems that contain functional information (the milling machine for example) to avoid having to endlessly discuss random strings of noise that were adequate to use in testing communication systems but are not suitable for this context.

 

After all inputs and outputs are considered, there is no net decrease in entropy. The Sun is a great provider of net entropic increase. A local system can decrease entropy so long as the global system increases it, and the Sun certainly provides for us.

 

I know you've claimed we need to account for the "source of low entropy information" delivered to organisms, but you have not established that this is even necessary. The Sun does not have to deliver us low-entropy bricks of magical Entropilite. It merely delivers energy, while increasing net entropy.

 

Biological systems require an information blueprint to replicate and to manage and control cell processes. The information is necessary.

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