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 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
Msg: 48
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Define the Theory of EvolutionPage 2 of 15    (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15)
scorpiomover

You are confusing the Theory of Adaptational Evolution with evolution itself.


I have never, ever heard this term, Theory of Adaptational Evolution...please elucidate.


They died out because they were all in one place, and they all got eaten


Ya, to elaborate... finally humans colonized the habitat of the dodo, and they have never encountered humans (as = predators), thus, weren't instintivelly 'afraid'...and were easily hunted and killed.


Evolution only addresses where some of those species came from, assuming that other species existed in the first place. So it never address the question of The Origin of Species.


You're expecting one theory to encompass EVERYTHING...why is that? Of course it addresses the question of the Origin...OF...SPECIES. Why/how is there speciation?This is the question. What you're really asking for, as others have pointed out, is origin of life (abiogenesis). Evolution assumes that there are many species (it's self-evident). The ORIGIN of this is what it asks. What you're trying to arm-wrestle out of "Origin of Species" is a mis-interpretation (and a play on words). That it doesn't answer how 'species' (as a whole originated)...why would it? If anything, there'd be a more direct word to use for what you're alluding, than the word 'species', called....life. Cuz otherwise, I'd counter and ask, what species? which one, specifically? Hence, back to abiogenesis.
 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
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Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/16/2008 10:16:35 PM
solomon999:

The fossil record shows very little when it comes to evolution. In fact the fossil record would rather prove a lack of evolution of species.


Care to elaborate? Back that up?


Interbreeding of different species is also not possible for an explanation of evolution.


Who said it was?


But from what I have seen, I believe it would be quite easy for mutations to occur in a number of things over a very short time period, without any 'evolutionary' process involved.


What disqualifies changes occuring through mutation over a short period of time from being an evolutionary process? My answer would be: human intervention (but, not entirely, as flies in labs have been shown to change over short generations, by human intervention, as example of evolution)....but, if these changes occured (somehow - let's assume for arguments sake) naturally...YES, it would STILL be evolution (some may call it, microevolution - over a short time, small # of generations). Mutations are one explanation within the theory of evolution, so I don't understand how mutation = 'without any evolutionary process involved'.
 FrogO_Oeyes
Joined: 8/21/2005
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Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/16/2008 11:26:53 PM

It would be like discussing the development of skyscrapers without discussing the development of steel manufacturing methods.

You mean “on topic”? The latter subject is actually irrelevant. For the construction of skyscrapers, all that matters is that the materials exist. Likewise evolution - no life, no evolution. Doesn't matter how you get it, as you wouldn't have evolution [or skyscrapers] if life [or steel] didn't exist in the first place.

You cannot build skyscrapers without a minimal level of quality of steel. It just can't be done.

And yet we build skyscrapers. I doubt the engineers which design them begin by reiinventing the mining, smelting, and refining processes first. Our engineers do not [literally] “re-invent the wheel” before they design an oilfield truck. They simply select the wheel which meets their standards. Discussing one does not require discussing the other, and is actually unaffected by any such discussion.

I KNOW that the mechanisms of evolution are claimed to have nothing to do with abiogenesis.

It's not a “claim”. The definitions and mechanisms are unrelated.

But they are both supposed to be concerned with developmental changes on living organisms from environment factors.

Not so. Abiogenesis is concerned with the transition from organic chemistry to self-sustaining chemical reactions, to self-replicating life. Abiogenesis has no effect on living organisms, since life, once it exists is not “a-bio”.

All I can say is that the Theory of Mutational Evolution has nothing to do with abiogenesis, because mutation is change of an organism, not the beginning.

Ok, bingo. We might be on the right track here, although I've never heard of this particular theory.

But the theory of evolution doesn't make it clear that it is restricted to mutation.

It isn't. That is simply a consequence of how information is inherited. The theory of evolution requires heritable changes. DNA is heritable, and changes are possible in a wide variety of means loosely described as “mutation”. The heritable blueprint is subject to random variations so that offspring are never identical to the parents. Natural selection acts as a “filter” which gradually removes those descendants which are more vulnerable to environmental factors. In a nutshell, those two facts combine to make the theory of evolution.

I KNOW that most people don't want to consider evolution with abiogenesis. But I'm still hoping that logic and reason prevail in science.

They do. That is why the two theories are not confabulated by scientists. The theory of evolution by natural selection deals with a) heritable traits, b) random variation, and c) natural selection. The origin of life deals with none of these, and the theory of evolution is not in any way significantly affected by the factors which govern the origin of life.

Abiogenesis is generally considered to be a chemical process leading to self-replication, and that is but one of the factors required for “life”.

Life, however, exists. Period. Likewise, evolution occurs, and natural selection occurs. It is the nature of life itself which creates both evolution and natural selection [wolf eats deer. Deer does not pass on its genes]. Whether Zeus *poofed* them into existence or a film of fatty acids formed into balls on a surface of clay, only those which survive and replicate matter in an evolutionary sense. They must live in order to evolve.

I wrote that the speciation is gradual.

On the reasonable assumption that we are speaking in a geological sense of “gradual”, this is generally true. Speciation can, however, be instantaneous. All it requires is, in essence, a single gene change. For that matter, variation within a single species may already be enough to define multiple species, and it is only their interconnected populations which hold them together. A single environmental disaster can instantly remove those interconnecting populations, and those remaining instantly become distinct species because they are now completely unable to interbreed. Interestingly, it is this extinction of “intermediates” which ultimately distinguishes new species.


There is only one occasion wherein one would be required to discuss both biogenesis and evolution. That occasion would be the one in which the origin of life and the origin of species are one and the same. There is no significant evidence of that being the case, and there is considerable evidence to the contrary.






The fossil record shows very little when it comes to evolution. In fact the fossil record would rather prove a lack of evolution of species.

The evidence which is available contradicts the evidence you have not offered to back this up. Please see any other “evolution” thread here.

Because the aquired organism eg mule is infertile and cannot reproduce.

Actually, you picked one of the very FEW cases of an infertile hybrid. There are not only a great many examples of fertile hybrids, but there are many examples of species which have been shown to have arisen naturally by hybridization. There are even a couple genera which seem to have arisen by cross-genus hybridization. That's just animals. Among plants, complex natural and artificial hybrids are numerous. As above, discussed at length in other threads.

The millions of years did not exist.

To put it in simple terms: the evidence disagrees with you. More importantly, the conclusion of great geological age is dependant on the same physics which led to the technology you are now using to post here. Denying one denies the other...yet here we are.

More amazingly though, some other plants of the same crop, that were also treated with this stuff had four perfectly opposed branches. It was quite a sight to see.

Nice anecdote. And what happened when you grew the offspring, without hormone treatment? I'd lay heavy odds on “normal growth”. “Mutation” refers to genetic changes, not the physical or behavioral changes which may or may not result from genetic causes. You are not describing a heritable change. If I chop your arm off, you'll look pretty odd too, but I wouldn't expect you to have one-armed children.

I do know that certain chemicals can be added to some plants to change them from biploid to polyploid cell structures.

This would in fact be a chemically induced “mutation” of a particular type. Such changes also occur naturally and are a common means by which new species arise instantly. Alterations in the total amount of DNA in an organism commonly results in changes in behavior, appearance, or reproductive compatibility which isolate those organisms from any others which do not include similar amounts of DNA and similar numbers of chromosomes. Many species of Xenopus and Silurana arose by natural polyploidization, fusion or splitting of chromosomes, etc. Species of Ceratophrys and Proceratophrys arose by polyploidization. Hyla versicolor arose as not simply a polyploid of Hyla chrysoscelis, but as a hybrid swarm of of four species of polyploids which arose from H.chrysoscelis and two unknown extinct species

And I wouldn't classify mutations of this kind as 'evolution' as stated here.

You're right. However, mutations alone are not evolution anyway. Evolution as a fact, involves inheritance, which most of your examples exclude. Evolution is descent with change. Only those changes which are genetic matter in the end, because only those can be passed on to the next generation anyway, no matter what their assets or liabilities may be [such as the amputated arm I mentioned]. If your one-armed nature is genetic and you manage to reproduce, your offspring are likely to ALSO be at a disadvantage by lacking an arm. If your one armed nature is accidental and you manage to reproduce, your offspring won't share your disadvantage. Either way, natural selection will work against you, but only when genes are involved will it also exert the same pressure on all your descendants as well. In the latter case, natural selection will apply directional pressures on particular sets of genes. Once again, in a nutshell, this is the theory of evolution. This is also why the theory is so solidly supported, as seen by pretty much anyone familiar with it:

Evolution occurs.
Natural selection occurs.
Natural selection is a logical and strong influence on evolution, and one which is unrefuted thus far. That's pretty much all that the theory says. The whole “fish to ape” issue is just as logical, just as supported. It's supported by stratigraphy, fossil evidence, genetic evidence [both nuclear and mitochondrial], and our understanding of how the genetic code works. This last one is important, because we now have a very good idea of exactly why some very significant changes result. Many of the bigger changes are not due to point mutations, but from one or more multiplications [entire genome, chromosomes, sections of chromosomes, particular genes]. Point mutations are then possible without altering the function of the original gene.

To give you an idea...centipedes have many body segments, each with a pair of legs. The front body segment has a pair of spikes attached to venom glands. I don't know how many copies of the “leg segment gene” are involved, and it may be different between centipede species. That said, the “spike” segment is just a variation on the leg segment. 51 copies of the gene, and one has mutated gradually into a tool useful for hunting. With so many legs, mutations to one pair is unlikely to be a problem, so this front pair can mutate, over and over, with the most useful versions giving an advantage to the survival of those who have them.

Now look at insects...Only six legs and three body segments...but that's an illusion. Inside, their bodies actually have remnants of segments, the nerves and muscles are segmented, the circulatory system is segmented. If you look closely at the head...multiple sets of mouth parts, antennae...

Same deal in crustaceans and arachnids: legs of all kinds, mouth parts of all kinds, antennae of all kinds, are all created by the same original gene. That gene has been copied multiple times, as in centipedes [an older and simpler group], and then the various copies have changed in ways which have resulted in more specialized appendages. Whether six, eight, or 50 legs, the animal still functions quite well, but the more specialized appendages offer new advantages beyond locomotion. It's actually quite easy to achieve rather large changes over short periods of time, because it's also not hard for more “typical” mutations to occur without harming the organism [as often assumed by those who argue against mutation being advantageous].
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
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Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/17/2008 9:27:33 AM
RE msg 77 by qriosity:
I have never, ever heard this term, Theory of Adaptational Evolution...please elucidate.
The theory of evolution via adaptation. I just coined the term to show you that its not the same as evolution. I am quite willing to accept that several species resulted from adaptations. However, there are several reasons why a species might evolve, and only ONE of them is adaptation. So before I'd claim that a particular species evolved due to adaptation, I'd need proof, and before I'd claim that all species evolved due to adaptation, I'd need proof for each and every species.

Ya, to elaborate... finally humans colonized the habitat of the dodo, and they have never encountered humans (as = predators), thus, weren't instintivelly 'afraid'...and were easily hunted and killed.
Another example of how a species might evolve, in this case, it evolved to extinction.

You're expecting one theory to encompass EVERYTHING...why is that?
BECAUSE THAT IS THE PREMISE OF THE THEORY! The theory of evolution makes a claim about every species that ever existed, excluding the species that we KNOW were artificially bred that way. How do we know that half the species weren't seeded by aliens? WE DON'T! If you ask anyone who believed in evolution, and didn't know much about artificial breeding, how did the bulldog come to be so small, he/she'll tell you it was due to evolution. But it wasn't. The bulldog was bred from the mastiff. So we cannot really KNOW which species evolved and which didn't. But the claim of the theory is that ALL these species evolved. That is a theory that encompasses EVERYTHING, other than those we know for a fact that did not evolve.

Further, there are several mechanisms for how any species would come about. Yet Darwin's theory of evolution through Natural Selection excludes any possibility for anything other than Natural Selection.

I believe that the theory of evolution should be treated the same way as any other theory. It should be examined, for each and every species, and for each and every possible reason that the species may have come about.

Of course it addresses the question of the Origin...OF...SPECIES. Why/how is there speciation?This is the question. What you're really asking for, as others have pointed out, is origin of life (abiogenesis). Evolution assumes that there are many species (it's self-evident). The ORIGIN of this is what it asks. What you're trying to arm-wrestle out of "Origin of Species" is a mis-interpretation (and a play on words). That it doesn't answer how 'species' (as a whole originated)...why would it? If anything, there'd be a more direct word to use for what you're alluding, than the word 'species', called....life. Cuz otherwise, I'd counter and ask, what species? which one, specifically? Hence, back to abiogenesis.
If you ask anyone why there are so many different species, that is an interesting question. But it is not a question why such species exist. It's a question of why one species is different from another. It's not much different than asking why some families are fat, and others are thin, why some families are tall, and others short, why some people are good-looking and others not, why some people are smart and others not.

If I want to look at obesity, I cannot just pick arguments that make sense to me. I have to look at how the body deals with fat. So I have to look at how fat develops in the body IN THE FIRST PLACE. If I want to look at height, I have to look at the process of growth. So I have to look at growth from the foetus onwards. If I want to look at looks, I have to look at how the body develops its shape and symmetry, how the skin and hair develop. If I want to look at intelligence, I have to look at how the brain works.

So if I want to look at how different species come about, I have to look at how any species develops, from the first species to the last, and usually, what occurs later on is an extension of the initial process. So I would always look at how the first species came about, in order to understand how different species came about.

Otherwise, I am likely to start with some assumptions, that would not be possible for the first species.

Does that make me pedantic and hair-splitting? Probably. But that also makes me rigorous, not willing to accept the first opinion I hear, until I hear definite proof for it. That makes me committed to the ideals of science.

RE msg 79 by FrogO_Oeyes:
You mean “on topic”? The latter subject is actually irrelevant. For the construction of skyscrapers, all that matters is that the materials exist.
Actually, it is unbelievably relevant. If I want to construct a skyscraper 1 foot tall, I don't need to care about how that steel behaves. But I don't need steel either. If I want to make a skyscraper the size of the Empire State Building, I need to care about the tensile strength of that steel, about how much pressure winds can put on the steel girders within the skyscraper, about how much pressure gravity can put on those girders, and how much they can take, about how much the steel can heat up and how that might affect how much weight the girders can take, and much more, because the higher the skyscraper, the more pressure it has to take.

However, if I want to study the development of skyscrapers, then I NEED to study the development of steel manufacturing methods, because the methods used at each point in history will determine the availability what quality girders were available, and if a certain quality of girder was not available, then a skyscraper could not have been built to the height that would need that quality of steel. Even more, if would determine the architecture, because pyramidal structures would be more stable than a pole-style structure, so in earlier times, when steel was not made to the same quality as today, one would expect to see more skyscrapers with a pyramid at the top, to give it better stability, and in more modern times, when steel can be made to a much higher quality, one would expect to see more skyscrapers with more unusual structures, which is what we see. Further, the method of manufacture of steel would affect the price of steel, which would affect the cost of a skyscraper, which would affect how many skyscrapers were built, by who, and how tall. Further, if there was a scandal in the steel industry, or there was a major accident to a building that was attributed to bad quality steel, that affected public opinion of people to view steel in a negative light, then there would be public distrust of buildings extremely reliant on steel, especially very tall buildings. That would affect consumer confidence in companies that built their head offices as skyscrapers, or rented them, and that too would affect which skyscrapers were built.

All of this shows is that you DO need to understand steel manufacturing history to understand the history of architecture, particularly with respect to skyscrapers. I like architecture. It really explains a lot about why certain types of buildings were popular at certain times when you consider the availability of certain materials, and understanding the history of the manufacture of those materials is crucial to understanding how and why some materials were readily available and other weren't.

Likewise, evolution. You wouldn't need to understand abiogenesis to guess how evolution worked. But if understood how lifeless molecules developed into life, it would explain the chemistry of how those molecules work to connect with each other, which would explain the inner workings of the body, how mutations develop, why some bodies are more or less likely to survive and/or reproduce, and so how evolution works in the first place.

And yet we build skyscrapers. I doubt the engineers which design them begin by reiinventing the mining, smelting, and refining processes first.
Actually, the opposite was true. The first developments in iron and steel were not of a quality that would have supported skyscrapers. So despite the crowded conditions in European cities, where wood houses would be built to 3, 4 and 5 storeys, steel wasn't used as supporting beams at all. It was only once steel became of a high load-bearing quality, that engineers began to use steel, because it was more efficient than wood.


Our engineers do not [literally] “re-invent the wheel” before they design an oilfield truck. They simply select the wheel which meets their standards. Discussing one does not require discussing the other, and is actually unaffected by any such discussion.
Engineers re-invent the wheel all the time. However, if the existing methods already do the job extremely well, they don't bother, because there is nothing to gain. But in many cases, the materials will simply not take the strain. So they need to design new materials. Sometimes, the shape of a vehicle is going to cause problems. So they need to design new cars.

A classic case is modern cars. Back in the 70s, we had plenty of working cars. There was no need whatsoever to re-design the shape or materials of cars. They worked just fine. However, there was a demand for increased car safety, particularly in the case of collisions, as when cars would plough into each other, the front of the car would plough backwards into the middle of the car, driving the engine block into the occupants. Engineers looked at various methods of stopping this happening, to no avail. In the end, they decided that the best way was to weaken the chassis in such a way that when it was impacted, it would crumple around the interior of the car, without impacting it. So they invented crumple zones. These were deliberate weaknesses in the material and the shape that caused the chassis to crumple in an impact, around the interior, but without even being pushed into the interior, against the normal behaviour of all materials.

An example would be like taking a piece of chocolate cake in a cardboard box. As anyone knows who's bought chocolate cake in a supermarket, they often provide a cardboard box with it. Often on the time you get home, the box will receive some knocks, especially if you are travelling on the bus with lots of shopping. By the time you get home, you often find the box has been squashed and so has the cake.

Now imagine that someone makes a special type of box that when it gets knocked, the box crumples around the cake, but leaves the cake intact. Crazy? Certainly. Impossible? Almost certain. But that's what engineers did, in cars.

Reinventing the wheel can be very useful, if the existing wheel doesn't do what you need.


I KNOW that the mechanisms of evolution are claimed to have nothing to do with abiogenesis.
It's not a “claim”. The definitions and mechanisms are unrelated.
That IS a claim. If you can prove it, then do so. But just because you think something is right, and you cannot see why it is wrong, doesn't make it right. Prove it.


But they are both supposed to be concerned with developmental changes on living organisms from environment factors.
Not so. Abiogenesis is concerned with the transition from organic chemistry to self-sustaining chemical reactions, to self-replicating life. Abiogenesis has no effect on living organisms, since life, once it exists is not “a-bio”.
Abiogenesis doesn't happen to living organisms, the same way you cannot be born twice. But the body is conceived and grows in the womb is directly connected to how the body works as an adult, and the same things that affect us as foetuses affect us as adults, only more so.


All I can say is that the Theory of Mutational Evolution has nothing to do with abiogenesis, because mutation is change of an organism, not the beginning.
Ok, bingo. We might be on the right track here, although I've never heard of this particular theory.
I'm glad that we can agree on something.


But the theory of evolution doesn't make it clear that it is restricted to mutation.
It isn't. That is simply a consequence of how information is inherited. The theory of evolution requires heritable changes. DNA is heritable, and changes are possible in a wide variety of means loosely described as “mutation”. The heritable blueprint is subject to random variations so that offspring are never identical to the parents.
It's true that for speciation to happen, that would imply that the new species has the same traits as the old, so the differences between the old species and the new species must be inheritable. It's also true that DNA is heritable, so it's logical that some of those changes would be in the DNA. However, you could say the same thing about any single chromosome within DNA. So if there is no logical reason to say that all the changes would happen in the DNA, then there is no logical reason why all the changes would happen only in the first chromosome as well. But that's not something we would consider reasonable. So before we can say that such hereditary changes are in the DNA, we would have to first assume that all changes in the soma that are NOT in the DNA cannot be heritable.

An example of inherited characteristics that come from sources other than DNA would be bacteria. We have bacteria in our bodies all the time. If the mother had a certain type of bacteria and she passed that onto her child, then it would be inherited. If every mother with that bacteria passed it onto all her children, then that bacteria would always be inherited. If the old species lacked that bacteria, and the new species somehow absorbed that bacteria, and the acquired beneficial characteristics that were the differences between the old species and the new species were as a result of that bacteria, then the "information" would come from the inherited bacteria, not DNA.

If the mitochondria were different in the new species, that would be a non-DNA inherited trait as well, unless all mitochondria in new cells is grown purely from the DNA.
If the body temperature were 98.5 in the new species, and that was simply passed on from mother to child, without the effect of DNA, that would be a non-DNA inherited trait as well, unless the DNA tells the body exactly what temperature to regulate.

I've been looking at DNA. Turns out that the number of genes found in the Human Genome Project is much lower than scientists expected to be needed for the development and control of the human body, suggesting the DNA is not the only source for the "information" controlling the body.

Natural selection acts as a “filter” which gradually removes those descendants which are more vulnerable to environmental factors. In a nutshell, those two facts combine to make the theory of evolution.
When we use the words "Natural" and "Selection", we have to understand that what those words mean to most people, is NOT what we would expect to happen according to the theory, and that other completely different words would describe what we would expect to occur as a result of evolution.

1) What Darwin meant by Natural, was that non-Natural means in his day meant "by human hand", and the theory of evolution describes species that lived and died long before humans were supposed to exist. So to Darwin, Natural meant "non-human". But we don't mean that at all.

When we say someone died of "natural" causes, we mean that someone died of old age, or something equally similar. When a group of people dies of smallpox, or diphtheria, we call it an unnatural death. When a group of people die because they are killed by competitors, or eaten by wild animals (predators), we call it unnatural. When an earthquake wipes out a people, or a volcano, we call it unnatural.

2) What Darwin meant by Selection, was that the new species rose to proliferate and the older species became extinct. It doesn't matter how that happened. We'd call that circumstance. But not Selection.

An example is the Dinosaurs. The Dinosaurs are supposed to have been wiped out by a meteor, that raised the temperature of life on Earth for a few years. During that time, the Dinosaurs were not capable of surviving, and a few tiny mammals were. A few years later on, things went back to normal. But by this time, the Dinosaurs had been wiped out. Their environment hadn't really changed. It just had a tiny blip, a few very bad summers and winters. The mammals were actually not as well adapted to the environment as the Dinosaurs were. They weren't any better adapted to that unique circumstance. But the Dinosaurs were completely unadapted to that unique circumstance, so much so that they were wiped out.

So the rise of mammals was due to evolution due to Non-human-originated Circumstance, and all examples of evolution would equally well fit into that category, except that the circumstances are often much longer and less radical. But the principle remains the same.

However, since the rise of humans, it is no longer possible to state that evolution rises solely by Circumstance of Non-human-origin. Many species have been introduced into other parts of the world, which have resulted in the proliferation of those species, and the extinction of others. A classic case is rabbits in Australia. No-one had any clue about how rabbits would cause the elimination of much of the wildlife in Australia. But it happened. That's still evolution, according to Darwin.

So I believe that Darwin would probably say using our language that the theory of evolution is through Human and Non-human Circumstance, but that the species that have existed before humanity's rise had to have evolved through Non-human Circumstance, simply because humans were not around back then.

It might seem like semantics, but people actually understand what you say based on the words you use. When they hear Natural Selection, they think of entirely different things than Circumstance before humans existed, but that is what Darwin meant. It's just that the beliefs, cultures, climates, attitudes and practices of English-speakers has changed dramatically over the last 2 centuries, and as a result so has the language of English.


I KNOW that most people don't want to consider evolution with abiogenesis. But I'm still hoping that logic and reason prevail in science.
They do. That is why the two theories are not confabulated by scientists.
I'm not familiar with that word. I had to look it up:

From Wikipedia:
Confabulation, also known as false memory is the confusion of imagination with memory, and/or the confusion of true memories with false memories.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confabulated

From dictionary.com:
1. unconsciously replace fact with fantasy in one's memory
2. talk socially without exchanging too much information; "the men were sitting in the cafe and shooting the breeze"
3. have a conference in order to talk something over; "We conferred about a plan of action" [syn: confer]
http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=confabulate

So it would seem to me that to "confabulate" abiogenesis and/or evolution, would be to believe that something is fact when it is fantasy, to either believe that abiogenesis and/or evolution are both fact when they are fantasy, or fantasy when they are fact. It would only be true to say that scientists don't confabulate evolution if everyone but scientists all believe that evolution is true, and that they do too, or if everyone but scientists all believe that evolution is false, and that they believe it false too. The same with abiogenesis. But neither seem to be the case in real life. Lots of people don't believe in evolution, and scientists do. Scientists don't even discuss if abiogenesis is true or false.

Perhaps you could explain how you used the word "confabulate". 'Cause I'm confused.

The theory of evolution by natural selection deals with a) heritable traits, b) random variation, and c) natural selection. The origin of life deals with none of these, and the theory of evolution is not in any way significantly affected by the factors which govern the origin of life.
a) Life itself on this planet is very clearly a heritable trait, since all species of life on Earth all run on DNA. It's not hard to see that life doesn't have to exist on DNA. DNA itself is a heritable trait, which is supposed to be the basis of many of the heritable traits of evolution, and AFAIK, ALL heritable traits according to modern evolutionary theory. So the origin of life clearly has heritable traits, which part and parcel of the heritable traits of evolution.

b) Clearly, if life evolved without human, alien or Divine intervention, then it would require random variation. If life was designed by an intelligence, then it is quite reasonable to suppose that that intelligence wouldn't just up and leave, but would keep tinkering with its first design, and refine it, until it got the design(s) that it wanted. So if abiogenesis was NOT due to random variation, it would be very likely that neither was evolution.

c) Clearly, whatever environmental factors would affect evolution, it would include temperature, pressure, the proportion of gases in the atmosphere, the types of minerals in the ground, including the composition of soil, the presence of water, the amounts of rainfall, the amounts of sunlight, the distribution and concentration of the various frequencies of sunlight and cosmic rays, the effects of meteors that impacted the Earth, and much more.

All of these would have affected abiogenesis. So a large part of what affected evolution would have affected abiogenesis, and vice versa. The only things that would have affected evolution and NOT abiogenesis would have been predators and anything else due to living organisms. However, since they would be affected by the above non-living factors, all living factors were indirectly controlled by non-living factors. Even mutations would be subject to things like temperature, pressure, the distribution of minerals in the soil. So in reality, the source of all of the factors affecting abiogenesis would affect evolution, and all of these factors would be the same factors as those that affect Natural Selection. So if evolution was caused by Natural Selection, so was abiogenesis.

Abiogenesis is generally considered to be a chemical process leading to self-replication, and that is but one of the factors required for “life”.
From my understanding of the usage of the word on the internet, abiogenesis means the formation of life from inanimate matter. Can you please send me the link to your source for the meaning of the word?

Also, if you DON'T think that abiogenesis means the formation of life from inanimate matter, then can you please tell me what the right word is? I don't want to confuse anyone.

Life, however, exists. Period.
Can you prove that? I can prove there is life on Earth. I cannot prove there is life on the moon.

Likewise, evolution occurs, and natural selection occurs.
I cannot prove there is evolutionary speciation on the Earth or the moon. I can prove there are changes between generations. I have blue eyes. My mother does not. My children may not have blue eyes. Is that evolution? I doubt so. If that is evolution, then what do you call gorillas changing into humans through successive generations? Because that is an entirely different thing.

It is the nature of life itself which creates both evolution and natural selection [wolf eats deer. Deer does not pass on its genes].
Wolf eats old deer, deer already had kids.
Wolf eats lame deer, deer has healthy genes, but broke its leg. Deer does not pass on its healthy genes.
Wolf eats runt deer, deer has healthy genes, but didn't get enough of the resources of its mother.
Wolf eats abnormal deer, deer has mutation that is beneficial for its survival, but mother saw mutated deer as not one of its offspring, and abandoned it.
Wolf tries to eat healthy deer, deer runs away. Deer lives to pass on its genes.

Please consider that simplistic arguments always need to be examined, to see if they are really likely to occur.

Whether Zeus *poofed* them into existence or a film of fatty acids formed into balls on a surface of clay, only those which survive and replicate matter in an evolutionary sense. They must live in order to evolve.
First, Zeus is a superhuman being, like Superman. No-one thinks that Kryptonians can just *poof* anything into existence. Second, in an evolutionary sense, what matters is HOW those survive and replicate. Whether they were born or generated is irrelevant. They are all examples of evolution.


I wrote that the speciation is gradual.
On the reasonable assumption that we are speaking in a geological sense of “gradual”, this is generally true.
I am glad that we can agree.

Speciation can, however, be instantaneous. All it requires is, in essence, a single gene change. For that matter, variation within a single species may already be enough to define multiple species, and it is only their interconnected populations which hold them together.
This is exactly the sort of evidence in present-day species that sceptics of evolution are asking of proof for. Such as dogs changing into an entirely new species. However, proponents of evolution always reply that evolution takes millions of years. That's the only reason I put in that it's gradual. It's to accommodate people who use that as an excuse as to WHY we haven't seen any dogs change into cat-dogs, that have the same abilities as a cat, or another new species.

A single environmental disaster can instantly remove those interconnecting populations, and those remaining instantly become distinct species because they are now completely unable to interbreed. Interestingly, it is this extinction of “intermediates” which ultimately distinguishes new species.
That's an interesting theory. However, that would imply that the environment was stable for all the years it took for the old species to breed intermediates, and the intermediates not to be eaten by a predator, or be denied food in some way, and then to mutate again to produce the new species, and ONLY THEN for the environmental disaster to occur. A modern-day equivalent would be to say that a group of working-class people started off somewhere, moved into the area hit by the Boxing Day Tsunami, lots of their children became somewhat better off, say middle-class, then lots of the children of that middle-class became much better off and became upper-class, then some of the working class and some of the upper-class moved somewhere else, but wouldn't date the working-class people, and ONLY THEN the Boxing Day Tsunami hit. It's theoretically possible. It's also possible that the working-class people and the upper-class people would be more likely to move than the middle-class people, simply because the working-class people have nothing, so they have nothing to keep them there, and the upper-class have lots of money, so they can afford to leave their stuff behind and buy more in the new location. The middle-class have some money and property, maybe a house, so they have incentive to stay, but not enough money so they can just leave it all behind and buy anew in a new location. HOWEVER, it would be ridiculous to suggest that NO middle class people would consider moving at all. So even then, you'd still expect that SOME middle-class people moved with the working and upper classes, and so SOME middle-class people would have survived. So it would be unlikely to happen, unless you've got multiple environmental disasters, that ALL hit the middle-class highly, but NOT the upper and working classes, so much so, that there are no middle-classes left. It would be more likely to suggest that when these environmental disasters hit, they hit everyone equally, and that it would be just as likely to hit before the intermediates have been born, or before they've reached enough numbers to be possible to produce a new generation, or before they produced mutations in the form of the new species, or before they've been able to produce a decent-sized new generation, AND that the old species don't see them as a threat.

Possible, just highly unlikely according to that type of scenario. Before I'd believe it happened to a group of people, I'd need exact chronological evidence of the disasters, and the changes in population, let alone mutations, because it could just as easily have happened another way that eliminated the new species before they got going, or eliminated them as well as the intermediates.

There is only one occasion wherein one would be required to discuss both biogenesis and evolution.
No-one is required to discuss evolution. Not unless you're doing it for pay, or for a degree, in which case, your aim is the money and the degree, not the truth.

That occasion would be the one in which the origin of life and the origin of species are one and the same. There is no significant evidence of that being the case, and there is considerable evidence to the contrary.
The theory of evolution is based on the idea that the origin of life is NOT the same as the origin of all species but one. So the evidence for this would be the evidence for the theory of evolution. If one is true, the other is also. If one is false, the other is false also. This is an entirely trivial statement, and so would not be considered for valid scientific study.

I realise that most evolutionists would NOT want to talk about abiogenesis. Darwin developed a comprehensive theory about the subject, but did not address abiogenesis. So it would require creative thinking, imagination and effort to come up with a substantial accompanying basis for abiogenesis. That is what science is all about. Doing the hard work.

It's very easy to build on someone else's idea. Just look at how many companies made semiconductors once the initial semiconductor was made. Look at how many people build software once the first software packages was built. It's very difficult to be an innovator. It's very easy to just accept what someone else has come up with. But that is what real science is concerned with.

So I have far more respect for scientists who research abiogenesis. At least they are trying to push the boundaries of science, rather than just trying to support what most scientists already accept, and don't even manage to convince sceptics like me, who have no reason, religious or otherwise, to not accept evolution, other than a solid commitment to the truth.

I stand by what I said: I cannot consider evolution without abiogenesis, and I would seriously question the thinking of anyone who did. However, I would not question anyone who says that the theory of evolution doesn't talk about abiogenesis. I would merely question anyone who accepts it without inclusion of abiogenesis, unless they are only talking about evolution of individual species, and proved that evolution on the basis of evidence for THAT species and no other, and did not attempt to prove evolution for species as a whole.

I realise fully that this is a view that goes against the norm. I think about the possibilities that which others avoid. That is what makes me an innovator.

Don't sell yourself short. Live up to your abilities.
 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
Msg: 53
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History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/17/2008 12:15:41 PM
scorpiomover:


The theory of evolution via adaptation. I just coined the term to show you that its not the same as evolution.


You keep saying that about everything. Mutation isn't the same as evolution. Adaptation isn't the same as evolution. Natural selection isn't the same as evolution. Etc, etc, etc.

This is ILLOGICAL! They're not mutually exclusive. What is your basis of considering each of these to be MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE to evolution?

First, lemme clear some things for you. The head-honcho in this game is Darwin. Given - with his book, "The Origin of Species"...however.....please....note:

The theory of evolution, as we KNOW IT TODAY, has been added on to from Darwin's (QUITE A HUGE BIT). Hence, where Darwin's major postulation was evolution driven by natural selection, after the birth of genetics (initially ignited by Mendel's work on pea-plants), another contender appeared to explain the process of evolution (NOT AS a contrary to natural selection) but, as ANOTHER explanation on TOP OF - called, genetic drift.

Now, adaptation...IT IS A PHENOMENON THAT RESULTS FROM EVOLUTION.

Facts to clarify:

A) WHAT does evolution DO? Evolution leads to two somewhat related phenomenons: 1) adaptation, 2) speciation.
B) HOW does evolution WORK? By the mechanism of: 1) natural selection, and/or 2) genetic drift.
C) HOW are 'new' or 'altered' traits brought about in evolution? By: 1) mutation, 2) migration (between population, or between species), 3) lateral gene transfer (LGT)

**there are more 'terms' but, the quick and easy (most imp.) are above.

So, as you can see, you have haphazardly been using some of these terms, without staying true to what they really mean/are. Please stop using these terms interchangeably or as synonymous with evolution. This is incorrect.

Hence:


The theory of evolution via adaptation.....I am quite willing to accept that several species resulted from adaptations....However, there are several reasons why a species might evolve, and only ONE of them is adaptation.

..makes...no sense! A species doesn't evolve as a result of adaptation. Evolution allows for ADAPTATION to come about. Adaptation is a by-product of evolution brought about by the mechanism, of say, natural selection!!! Adaptation is a FEATURE that is common in a population which helps the population of species in some way, e.g., mimicry, say, of leaves, by insects.

So, I would humbly disagree that you are at a stage where even any amount of 'proof' (whether it be of adaptation) would be good enough, because one must first understand the concepts on which they speak, before, they can counter/challenge...or even simply understand the proof presented.



Another example of how a species might evolve, in this case, it evolved to extinction


Re: the dodo. Short answer: no! That is not evolution. Please understand terms presented above.



BECAUSE THAT IS THE PREMISE OF THE THEORY!

Again, short answer: no! Please understand what the theory of evolution posits. Biological evolution - at its simplest - "change in the properties of populations of organisms that transcend the lifetime of a single individual. " DJ Futuyma, "Evolutionary Biology", 1986....hence....the theory of evolution explains CHANGES in organisms at a population (aka, species) level. Nothing more, nothing less. You can brow-beat it to demand that it incorporate more, but, your whim has no relevance to this. It is what it is. If you ask it to be more, you are practicing intellectual dishonesty by changing the definition of what a theory posits itself to be. Like doing things like this:


1) What Darwin meant by Natural, was that non-Natural means in his day meant "by human hand", and the theory of evolution describes species that lived and died long before humans were supposed to exist. So to Darwin, Natural meant "non-human". But we don't mean that at all.

When we say someone died of "natural" causes, we mean that someone died of old age, or something equally similar. When a group of people dies of smallpox, or diphtheria, we call it an unnatural death. When a group of people die because they are killed by competitors, or eaten by wild animals (predators), we call it unnatural. When an earthquake wipes out a people, or a volcano, we call it unnatural.

2) What Darwin meant by Selection, was that the new species rose to proliferate and the older species became extinct. It doesn't matter how that happened. We'd call that circumstance. But not Selection.


It's like asking the theory of general relativity to include WITHIN it the origin of the universe because there are relevance to it.

No knowledge exists in isolation, but, it is wrong to assume that therefore, each theory cannot exist in isolation. It is a logical impossibility.

Heck, why then do we compartmentalize? Every explanation then, by your logic, should fit into one giant theory, from physics, to biology, to chemistry, etc, etc....



Further, there are several mechanisms for how any species would come about. Yet Darwin's theory of evolution through Natural Selection excludes any possibility for anything other than Natural Selection.


I don't know if you know, but the current theory of evolution is not JUST Darwin's theory of evolution through Natural selection. There has been much added on. MUCH! Like a coupla decades worth of info. Darwin started it. His wasn't the end. Just the beginning....
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 54
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History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/17/2008 6:26:18 PM
RE msg 82 by qriosity:

The theory of evolution via adaptation. I just coined the term to show you that its not the same as evolution.
You keep saying that about everything. Mutation isn't the same as evolution. Adaptation isn't the same as evolution. Natural selection isn't the same as evolution. Etc, etc, etc.

This is ILLOGICAL! They're not mutually exclusive. What is your basis of considering each of these to be MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE to evolution?
Where did I say they were mutually exclusive? I just said they were not the same.

As an aside, seeing you use the term "mutually exclusive" takes me back to when I was 13, and we were doing Venn diagrams, and the theory of sets and cosets. It's kind of relevant, because Adaptational evolution, or evolution via adaptation is the intersection of evolution with adaptation, and evolution is evolution with or without adapatation. In set theory, these are completely different sets. However, the set of evolution via adaptation is a subset of evolution. Just thought you might like to know that.

First, lemme clear some things for you. The head-honcho in this game is Darwin. Given - with his book, "The Origin of Species"...however.....please....note:

The theory of evolution, as we KNOW IT TODAY, has been added on to from Darwin's (QUITE A HUGE BIT). Hence, where Darwin's major postulation was evolution driven by natural selection, after the birth of genetics (initially ignited by Mendel's work on pea-plants), another contender appeared to explain the process of evolution (NOT AS a contrary to natural selection) but, as ANOTHER explanation on TOP OF - called, genetic drift.
1) Natural selection is a method whereby favourable inheritable traits become more common in your descendants, and unfavourable traits become less common. In order for this to be possible, traits must have a biological form which is genetic (inherited). So although Darwin may not have used the word "genetic", or used it as we might choose to understand it, he could not have developed a theory of natural selection without it, and so it must have been part of his general world-view. Mendel merely formalised what Darwin already knew. This is even more clear from Darwin's choice of term "Natural Selection", as this was taken to be the natural form of "artificial selection", which was the basis of Mendel's experiments. So Darwin knew Mendel. He just didn't use Mendel's jargon, or had it put as nicely.

2) Genetic drift is the process of random change in genetics (inherited traits). Now, if we take 2 gorillas, what will they produce? Another gorilla. Even with natural selection, 2 gorilla will only produce a variant of the original gorilla species. So in order for a new genetic trait to result, a new trait must develop. That trait could develop randomly, or by pressure from the environment. However, if it was via pressure, that would be Lamarckian evolution, not Darwinian evolution. So clearly, in order for any species to develop new genetic traits that weren't present before in the existing species, genetic drift would have to have been in the original theory. So all we have to ask is: are there any examples of this? One answer is the development of thermal homeostatis (warm-bloodedness) in mammals. Mammals developed from reptiles. Reptiles don't have thermal homeostatis. Some of their descendants developed this. But whatever creatures developed any of the genetic traits required for homeostasis, they didn't get it from their parents. So they had to get it from random development of new genetic traits, genetic drift. So genetic drift had to be part of Darwin's vision of evolution.

So Darwin knew genetics and genetic drift. The terms hadn't been invented yet, and few others suspected they existed. So lots of people who read Darwin's book assumed that genetics and genetic drift were both absent from his theory. But this just isn't possible. They just didn't think about it. If they had, they would have realised Darwin had to know them too.

As an aside: Mendel was an Augustinian Catholic monk. So not only did he believe in G-d, he believed in the Bible, and all of the beliefs of Catholicism. You could say that he didn't believe in some of the beliefs of Catholicism if he was a non-practising Catholic, You might say he doubted some of them if he was a practising Catholic. But you could not viably say he was a Catholic monk and he didn't believe in all the beliefs of Catholicism. It would be like saying an evolutionary biologist doesn't believe in Natural Selection. Since Mendel was the father of modern genetics. So there can be no conflict whatsoever between Catholicism and genetics, either of inheritance or genetic change. Just thought I'd point out this shows that the basis of evolution fits happily with religion.

Now, adaptation...IT IS A PHENOMENON THAT RESULTS FROM EVOLUTION.
The original quote which was the basis of my statement was msg 68 by Is too hot:
That mechanims does not bear any relationship or similarity to the ToE. Nitrogen did not come from carbon because carbon developed an adaptation that helped it survive a changing environment.
Since the adaptation was a development that helped it survive, its evolution was caused by the adaptation, not the other way around. If you want to take Is too hot to task for confusing you, that is your right. If he meant something else, then he should have said so. If he wasn't clear, he should have said so. However, you cannot take me to task for responding to him in the language he used.

Facts to clarify:

A) WHAT does evolution DO? Evolution leads to two somewhat related phenomenons: 1) adaptation, 2) speciation.
B) HOW does evolution WORK? By the mechanism of: 1) natural selection, and/or 2) genetic drift.
C) HOW are 'new' or 'altered' traits brought about in evolution? By: 1) mutation, 2) migration (between population, or between species), 3) lateral gene transfer (LGT)

**there are more 'terms' but, the quick and easy (most imp.) are above.

So, as you can see, you have haphazardly been using some of these terms, without staying true to what they really mean/are. Please stop using these terms interchangeably or as synonymous with evolution. This is incorrect.
Then let us be clear. Are these terms ("facts") in the English language? No. They are not. You called them terms. Terms are jargon. In this case, the jargon of evolutionary biology. You are entitled to tell an evolutionary biologist for using the wrong terms. But this isn't a forum that is specifically only for evolutionary biology. It's for everyone. So I am entitled to use any language that anyone might use.

If you want to write a book on evolution, go ahead. If you want to direct me to a site where people make this clear, go ahead. But I'm not going to take your word for it. You have simply not described anything clearly enough or logically enough for me to accept what you say on almost anything, let alone about the basic definitions of evolution itself.

..makes...no sense! A species doesn't evolve as a result of adaptation. Evolution allows for ADAPTATION to come about. Adaptation is a by-product of evolution brought about by the mechanism, of say, natural selection!!! Adaptation is a FEATURE that is common in a population which helps the population of species in some way, e.g., mimicry, say, of leaves, by insects.
Again, your problem was with Is too hot for using the term adaptation wrongly. I would also say that word adaptation was not used wrongly in this case. The jargon "adaptation" was. But this isn't an evolutionary lab. It's an open forum. English prevails, not jargon.

So, I would humbly disagree that you are at a stage where even any amount of 'proof' (whether it be of adaptation) would be good enough, because one must first understand the concepts on which they speak, before, they can counter/challenge...or even simply understand the proof presented.
Quite the reverse. I could not understand YOU, because you are not able to distinguish between jargon and language. I deal with computers. I have to translate everything I say into jargon with programmers, and everything into basic English with everyone else. Sometimes I have to do both, because I am often working with people who know some programming languages and skills but not others. So it's again something I take for granted. Sometimes people don't understand everything I say, but if it's because I used jargon, then part of that is MY fault, not theirs. So if I don't understand something you say, I will endeavour to understand it. But I'm not going to go away and get a degree in evolutionary biology just so you can talk in jargon.

Re: the dodo. Short answer: no! That is not evolution. Please understand terms presented above.
What do you call it when a species dies out due to the introduction of a predator species such as humans, or any species they brought with, or any species brought with that ate their food supply, that were introduced due to the travel to the location of the species of the dodo? I believe that travel of several animals from one location to another is called migration. Please explain how this is not evolution. Please name the theory that explains the origin of which species developed to be at this moment in time, which is often referred to as the Origin of Species. It cannot be evolution, as the dodo is no longer here, and you said that's not evolution. Please provide me with all this, so that I can post it to every website that claims that the Theory of Evolution explains the Origin of Species.

Again, short answer: no! Please understand what the theory of evolution posits. Biological evolution - at its simplest - "change in the properties of populations of organisms that transcend the lifetime of a single individual. " DJ Futuyma, "Evolutionary Biology", 1986
That is a massively encompassing statement. It encompasses ALL organisms, or only SOME organisms, and SOME organisms would mean that you would have to prove evolution is true on an organism-by-organism basis, for every organism that you wish to claim evolved. To claim it on ALL organisms would be encompassing every organism that ever existed from the dawn of time. Care to take a guess how many that is? More than billions. More than trillions.

You can brow-beat it to demand that it incorporate more, but, your whim has no relevance to this. It is what it is. If you ask it to be more, you are practicing intellectual dishonesty by changing the definition of what a theory posits itself to be. Like doing things like this:
I'm not brow-beating anyone. I'm using logic, reason. You're trying to discredit me. But I'm not doing anything I didn't do a day ago, or a year ago. Nothing has changed. If I was being intellectually dishonest, this would have been clear from my previous posts, so your first post to me should have been to accuse me of intellectual dishonesty. The fact that you didn't try to discredit me before, and you are trying to do it now, would not be consistent with someone who truly was guilty of your claims, and would be consistent with someone who found that she could not find any fault in my statements, and so wished to discredit my reputation, to discredit everything I said without examination.

In short: If you really thought I was lying, you would have said it right away. You knew I was telling the truth. That's what got stuck in your crow, the fact that you agree with what I write.

It's like asking the theory of general relativity to include WITHIN it the origin of the universe because there are relevance to it.
The theory of relativity DOES include the origin of the universe, because relativity has to apply in all places and times, including the origin of the universe! Where did you get the idea that it didn't?

There is a difference between evolution and relativity. Relativity describes a process that happens to me, all the time. Evolution does not.
There is a similarity between evolution and relativity. If the behaviour of the universe, at any point, was not consistent with relativity, relativity would be proved false. The same would be true of evolution.
The only reason that relativity doesn't typically include a discussion of the origin of the universe, is that it is a mechanism of behaviour, like genetics. It describes how things can change. One doesn't need to discuss abiogenesis or evolution to discuss genetics.

No knowledge exists in isolation, but, it is wrong to assume that therefore, each theory cannot exist in isolation. It is a logical impossibility.
All scientific theories cannot exist in isolation, because the entire universe is a single system, where all the components can and do interact with each other. So it is not a true isolated system. Even when we talk about isolated systems, it's only an approximation. It's not reality. As a result, the conclusions based on an isolated system will contain a varying level of error, and it is an unknown that we can never determine fixedly. So when dealing with an isolated system, all our equations must use an error value that is variable and generally unknown, neither fixed nor constant.

No-one ever said that each theory cannot be discussed in isolation, and sometimes it is very productive to do so. But you have to discuss what is relevant. You cannot leave something out, just because you don't have a good answer for it. That sort of reasoning is not acceptable for publication in any other field. Why should it be so in evolution? Why should we be less scientific and less reasonable when it comes to evolution than we are for the rest of knowlege and science?

Heck, why then do we compartmentalize? Every explanation then, by your logic, should fit into one giant theory, from physics, to biology, to chemistry, etc, etc....
It DOES. Physics requires chemistry. Chemistry requires physics. Biology requires chemistry and biology. Subjects are not divided according to isolation. They are divided according to size. More specifically, they are divided according to how much knowledge is contained and how much knowledge the students can work with within a single subject.

HOWEVER, if you are studying something for practical use, then it must be in terms of relevance. An accountant for a business must know all the tax and accounting laws regarding that business, and that is a massive subject for any business. They have to know all the laws because non-compliance with any piece of legislation, however seemingly inconsequential will land you and the business owners in court. The person who does the PAYE for a business only needs to know the laws for PAYE, which is very small for most small businesses.

Medicine is a brilliant example of subdivision due to isolation and size. CPR is a very small subject, so it doesn't take long to learn. Medical diagnosis is a massive subject, and so doctors have to study for years, and then gain even more years of experience under supervision. Surgery is further subdivided into cardio-thoracic, neurological, gynaecological, and other types. A General Practitioner (GP) is required to diagnose his patient's illnesses, no matter what they are. However, there is much in medicine, that a GP cannot know it all, and so cannot diagnose all patients. So GPs play it safe. If they are sure, they will diagnose, and if they are not, they will refer the patient to a consultant in that field. So GPs make a point of knowing all the most common illnesses and complaints, no matter from which area of medicine, and how isolated those fields are. Further, a consultant will be able to diagnose any disease within his/her field, but outside of his field, he will no little more than a GP, and often far less than that.

I don't know if you know, but the current theory of evolution is not JUST Darwin's theory of evolution through Natural selection. There has been much added on. MUCH! Like a coupla decades worth of info. Darwin started it. His wasn't the end. Just the beginning....
I can appreciate that. Maybe that was a bit much to say.

I can appreciate that you've studied evolution. It sounds like you've studied it in university. Perhaps you're even working in evolutionary biology. But there is a massive difference between studying something and understanding it for yourself. The former means that you've been taught it, and can give a lecture on it. The latter means that you can chat with anyone about it and answer their questions.

If that is true, then you are perfectly right in that you and I cannot discuss evolution, because I ask questions, and I am not satisfied to accept what others tell me unless I understand it for myself. In my degree, I would generally ask my lecturers questions on parts I did not understand. For one course, I had to go back to the lecturer's office and go over the material 3 times, and go over it again and again until I understood it. But I did that. If I don't do that, then I don't understand it, and I'm not comfortable with stating things I don't really understand, because I will want to answer people's questions, and I won't be able to answer even simple questions on it unless I understand it.

I'm learning to drive at the moment, and I keep making my driving instructor explain things to me, again and again. We've covered how the gears work at least 10 times, and how the brakes work at least 5 times. At least 30% of my driving lessons is just spent talking. But if I understand how things work, then I can put them into practice. If I don't understand how things work, then most of the time, I'm guessing what to do. That's the way I am.

So I'm going to require a pretty high level of understanding about anything, relative to most people I know, because I won't take things on face value, and because when I do, I find it extremely difficult to do even simple tasks in that subject.

That is something you will just have to accept. I have.
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 56
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/17/2008 8:26:14 PM


..makes...no sense! A species doesn't evolve as a result of adaptation. Evolution allows for ADAPTATION to come about. Adaptation is a by-product of evolution brought about by the mechanism, of say, natural selection!!! Adaptation is a FEATURE that is common in a population which helps the population of species in some way, e.g., mimicry, say, of leaves, by insects.

Again, your problem was with Is too hot for using the term adaptation wrongly. I would also say that word adaptation was not used wrongly in this case. The jargon "adaptation" was. But this isn't an evolutionary lab. It's an open forum. English prevails, not jargon.

No, his problem is with you and my problem is with you also. griosity is exactly correct. You have taken my words out of context. I wrote those words because you had posted garbage about the origin of elements that wasn't even wrong. I was drawing a parallel for you. You didn't understand the parallel and I'm giving the benefit of the doubt there for, if you did, your misquoting me makes you a disingenuous liar.


The theory of relativity DOES include the origin of the universe, because relativity has to apply in all places and times, including the origin of the universe!

Man, you are just too much! I have no idea where you learned your science but here's a word you need to research: singularity. You seem to have, in your own mind, decided that the universe must live by your rules, not the other way around.

I'm done with you...unless you keep misquoting me. Do it again and we'll have a real good time.
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 57
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/17/2008 8:51:39 PM

just curious, has anyone read charles darwins book on the subject
"origin of the species"

Yes. You must be referring to "On the Origin of Species..."


in the preface it pretty much sums it up that and this is a paraphrase
that"evoloution [u]is and never was[/u] meant to be a scientific fact"
pretty much as he said [u]just[/u] a "theory"

Funny that I don't recall that as part of Darwin's preface. Maybe you could point it out to me? Here's the link:
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/origin/preface.html

Can't find it? Yeah, I had that problem. Maybe you read it on one of those wacko religion sites. I saw it there too. The problem with those sites is that a scientific theory is not a fact but an explanation that explains scientific fact. So, a theory is never a fact. As those sites also state, a scientific theory must be falsifiable but then they erroneously claim that the ToE has not been falsifiably tested. I only have three words for them: D N A. There have also been other tests that evolution has passed but, for me, the searh and discovery of DNA, the master molecule of heredity, is its crowning glory.

But we both know that, don't we?
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 58
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History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/18/2008 5:32:25 AM
RE msg 85 by Is too hot:
No, his problem is with you and my problem is with you also. griosity is exactly correct. You have taken my words out of context.
I made my post in answer to the question. You decided to start disagreeing with my post, and taking issue with my statements, and using the word "adaptation". If you were not clear in your words, that is not my fault. If it would be my fault, then the onus would always be on the listener. First, that is almost impractical, because if you say something, you can know what you mean, but everyone else can never be sure. Second, if the onus is always on you, then there is nothing wrong with you being insulted in any language you don't understand: French, German, even Urdu. It's up to you to learn Urdu. It's not up to the guy insulting you to be honest that he was being rude.

While we're at it, girosity is a woman. HER , not HIS.

I wrote those words because you had posted garbage about the origin of elements that wasn't even wrong.
First, the statement is: it wasn't even right. Second, if you are going to state stuff about the origin of elements, then please quote with relevant sources. I've been studying quantum physics since I was 7 years old, and that's over 30 years. So go ahead, and try and discredit my reputation, but if you aren't presenting facts, then you are just showing that there are no facts to disagree with me.

I was drawing a parallel for you. You didn't understand the parallel and I'm giving the benefit of the doubt there for, if you did, your misquoting me makes you a disingenuous liar.
The parallel didn't fit. If I EVER said such a parallel to anyone IRL, or posted one, I would be lambasted until I could make it clear to the person I was saying/posting it to. If you cannot make it clear to me, then you haven't even made your point.


The theory of relativity DOES include the origin of the universe, because relativity has to apply in all places and times, including the origin of the universe!
Man, you are just too much! I have no idea where you learned your science but here's a word you need to research: singularity.
Are you referring to usage of the term "singularity" in the theory of relativity, that was published in ? Well, let me give you some info you may not have heard of. There was a Mathematician called Cauchy, who lived from 1789 to 1857, and produced a very famous theorem, the Cauchy Integral Theorem. Cauchy showed that for any function that is generally differentiable on the whole of the complex plane, if you take all the values of that function over any simple, closed, continuous loop, then the sum total (integral) of all of those values is zero. Doesn't matter what function, or what shape. However, with some shapes, certain points will occur, that if included within the integral, make the integral impossible to calculate, and if excluded, make the value of the integral zero, the same as with any other simple, closed, continuous loop. Those are called singularities in Mathematics, and the values of that function at those points are called residues. So Cauchy also stated that for any such integral, called a contour integral, the total value of the integral is the sum of the values of all of the residues. As each singularity is discrete, and not continuous, they cannot be integrated, but must be summed up, just like adding the numbers from 1 to 10. So, according to Cauchy, all you need are the residues, and to get them, all you need are the singularities, which are often only a few points. How do you find them? They are the points at which differentiation becomes impossible, and all normal behaviour breaks down.

In 1916, Albert Einstein published his theory on General Relativity, 59 years after Cauchy passed on.

Now, remember that mathematical singularities are areas in which the normally predictable behaviour of holomorphic functions such as Einsteinian Relativity break down and act wildly unpredictable. Black holes are areas in which the normally predictable behaviour of Einsteinian Relativity breaks down and act wildly unpredictable. So black holes are generally mathematical singularities.

Remember, there was more than 59 years for Cauchy's Integral Theorem to become world-famous before Einstein heard of it. I once read a biography of Einstein where he was quoted as saying that he attributed his discoveries to the fact that he studied Physics and a History of Mathematics in university. So he would almost certainly have covered such a famous, useful, and well-known theory such as Cauchy's Integral Theorem, which is used extensively all over physics, and is well-known to nearly everyone who studied Mathematics in university. So even Einstein knew what mathematical singularities were, and that if black holes were to exist, they would almost certainly be singularities.

Similarly, anyone exploring Einsteinian Relativity needs a good knowledge of calculus and mathematical analysis and would certainly know Cauchy's Integral Theorem, and that if black holes were to exist, they would almost certainly be singularities.

Care to guess where the term "singularity", used in Einsteinian Relativity, came from?

You seem to have, in your own mind, decided that the universe must live by your rules, not the other way around.
Quite the reverse. I look at what the universe does, irrespective of what any scientists says happen, and ONLY THEN do I look at the theories, and then see which ones fit. I do that because so much of psychology and common sense tells us that we accept what we first hear and read, and ignore anything that contradicts that. Now, I ask you, do you deliberately try to ignore any theories and just study the facts, and then return to the theories, by yourself, when your teachers and friends have gone, and then see for yourself if the theories fit the facts? Did you study the fossil trail before you studied evolution? Did you study DNA before you studied evolution? Did you study the biology of species before you studied evolution?

I'm done with you...unless you keep misquoting me.
You are done, when you disappear. I never misquoted you. I quoted your post, WORD FOR WORD.

Do it again and we'll have a real good time.
I will do what I choose to, which includes obeying the rules of POF. You have no effect on me.

I was required to study English for every year of my schooling, in spelling, grammar, pronunciation, comprehension and essay writing. In addition, I was required to pass exams in English Language before I could go to university, just like anyone else of my year in the UK. So I take great pains to check my posts for spelling mistakes, and to see if they are clear. I try not to be pedantic over common misuses of words, bad spelling, and American spelling, which anyone who knows the American and English versions can clearly see are spelling mistakes based on mistaking the written form to match how its spoken, when English was never written as it was spoken (color vs colour, sord vs sword, nite vs night). However, if I am accused of deceiving people on the basis of bad usage by others, I take umbrage to that.

I've given 2 clear examples when you've used incorrect usage of the English language, in this post alone. So you can hardly say that your posts are that clear in the first place.

You may disagree with what I've written. You may not like it. All that is your right.
What is not your right is to claim that you don't like what I write, just because you cannot argue with it.
I am entitled to my opinion that I cannot properly understand evolution in isolation from abiogenesis, and cannot support study of evolution without consideration the process of abiogenesis. I already have seen more support for abiogenesis than for evolution. However, I have also read that those studies into abiogenesis have been ignored and ridiculed by the scientific community. So if there is any problem with providing a coherent theory that combines abiogenesis with evolution, it isn't from my stubbornness to doubt abiogenesis. It's from the scientific community's stubbornness to refuse to consider abiogenesis altogether.
 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
Msg: 59
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/18/2008 9:57:30 PM
kind of relevant, because Adaptational evolution, or evolution via adaptation is the intersection of evolution with adaptation, and evolution is evolution with or without adapatation. In set theory, these are completely different sets. However, the set of evolution via adaptation is a subset of evolution.


Again, this is nonsense. You can play on words as much as you like, but, if it doesn't generate an actual thought in line with the theory you choose to take on (because you have misinterpreted what the theory itself states)...then, all this is nonsensical ramblings.

Evolution is not evolution without adaptation. You'd be leaving out half of the proposed outcome of what evolution achieves. It's like giving half an explanation and still claiming one can understand a concept in full.

I don't know of anything known as evolution VIA adaptation - this is, again, nonsensical. Adaptation via evolution, sure.


So although Darwin may not have used the word "genetic", or used it as we might choose to understand it, he could not have developed a theory of natural selection without it, and so it must have been part of his general world-view.


Ya, this is not a new thought, as it is intuitively true, and has been proven as well. Check up the discourse b/w Darwin & Fleeming Jenkins. At the time, the concept of inheritence wasn't anything new (the fact it is carried through in genes, was shed through the initial works of Mendel, and building on that). However, the common (mis)conception at that time, which was Jenkin's position and thus, subsequent critique of natural selection, was that of the 'blending inheritence theory' (that variations DISAPPEARED over generations, i.e., as generations went on, they would be more uniform). Darwin couldn't reconcile that, esp. in the face of his concept of SEXUAL selection. Interestingly enough, Darwin, even not having the priviledge of Mendel's work (he was before Mendel's time/experiments)...he came QUITE close to the same revelation as Mendel.

RA Fisher (statistics birthfather - Fischer's exact-test and so forth) found a letter of Darwin to Huxley, in 1857:
"I have lately been inclined to speculate, very crudely and indistinctly, that propagation by true fertilisation will turn out to be a sort of mixture, and not true fusion, of two distinct individuals, or rather of innumerable individuals, as each parent has its parents and ancestors."


2) Genetic drift is the process of random change in genetics (inherited traits). Now, if we take 2 gorillas, what will they produce? Another gorilla. Even with natural selection, 2 gorilla will only produce a variant of the original gorilla species. So in order for a new genetic trait to result, a new trait must develop. That trait could develop randomly, or by pressure from the environment. However, if it was via pressure, that would be Lamarckian evolution, not Darwinian evolution. So clearly, in order for any species to develop new genetic traits that weren't present before in the existing species, genetic drift would have to have been in the original theory. So all we have to ask is: are there any examples of this? One answer is the development of thermal homeostatis (warm-bloodedness) in mammals. Mammals developed from reptiles. Reptiles don't have thermal homeostatis. Some of their descendants developed this. But whatever creatures developed any of the genetic traits required for homeostasis, they didn't get it from their parents. So they had to get it from random development of new genetic traits, genetic drift. So genetic drift had to be part of Darwin's vision of evolution.


You haven't understood genetic drift, thus, your examples of the gorilla, and Lamarck, etc, etc, are again, nonsensical & irrelevant.

To put simply, natural selection - non-random, genetic drift -random (yes). But,

So clearly, in order for any species to develop new genetic traits that weren't present before in the existing species, genetic drift would have to have been in the original theory.


Wrong! Nothing of this sort happens. A "new" genetic trait doesn't just POP up due to genetic drift (only by mutation, migration, LGT...remember my previous post, I explained this already!). Genetic drift, as its simplest, is that, not ALWAYS is there 'survival of the fittest', as in, sometimes, by chance, certain individuals leave behind more descendants than others, not cuz they're 'healthier', but by chance survival....and thus, THOSE genes has more chances of being passed on in future generations, which changes the gene frequency in the population, affecting future generations, and so forth. There is no "new" genes relevance in discussing genetic drift. That's a whole different section.

You clearly have not understood genetic drift....but, the example of your analogy with the gorillas made me laugh. :D


As an aside: Mendel was an Augustinian Catholic monk. So not only did he believe in G-d, he believed in the Bible, and all of the beliefs of Catholicism.


And....? What's the point to this? We're looking at the theory/concept/idea, not, therefore, extrapolating the idea to the source of the idea and that, the idea itself somehow connected to the characteristics of the source. That's ridiculous! James Watson, one of the fathers of DNA, says that one can link race with intelligence, and he believed it can be proven genetically (it cannot). Dude was a f-ing racist!If we believe that the idea has to always aling with the source, then, whoever believes in genetics and DNA should hail to racism. Yeahhhhh..... Thus, what Mendel's thought on theology, god, whatever was, is irrelevant to looking at his contribution to the inheritence theory.


Just thought I'd point out this shows that the basis of evolution fits happily with religion.


Um...thanks. Kinda knew that already as my mama is a deeply religious woman, and she also has a PhD in Biological Anthropology, and thus, fully supports evolution. You assumed I would think otherwise, erronously so. FYI, although I learned quite a lot of evolution from school (Uni..even though it's not my specialization, took courses for fun), she was a key teacher of mine too, from quite the young age. My initial interest in this field started quite young when my mom would sometimes take me to her Uni (lab) and they had the coolest creatures (or so it seemed to me) in jars in the lab, skeleton animals, fossils, and other such things. So, no, I'm not brandishing book-learnin' (only) when discussing evolution; as, through her collegues and friends, I got to learn first hand, through dialogue, questioning, discussion. Which has made me realize I only know the surface of evolutionary theory.


The original quote which was the basis of my statement was msg 68 by Is too hot: - scorpio
"That mechanims does not bear any relationship or similarity to the ToE. Nitrogen did not come from carbon because carbon developed an adaptation that helped it survive a changing environment." - Is too hot
Since the adaptation was a development that helped it survive, its evolution was caused by the adaptation, not the other way around. If you want to take Is too hot to task for confusing you, that is your right. If he meant something else, then he should have said so. If he wasn't clear, he should have said so. However, you cannot take me to task for responding to him in the language he used. - scorpio


Why would I take him to task? You have failed to understand what he has said, and, then, out of context, taken a term he used and applied it to another, completely different scenario. That's shoddy! Or, perhaps, you didn't know better. What I think is failing us from progressing in this debate is that you are refusing to accept that there are certain parameters within a debate. For example, you say:


In this case, the jargon of evolutionary biology. You are entitled to tell an evolutionary biologist for using the wrong terms. But this isn't a forum that is specifically only for evolutionary biology. It's for everyone. So I am entitled to use any language that anyone might use.


No. You HAVE to not, 1) used the terms, 2) use them in the proper context. In scientific inquiry, we call them operational definitions. THIS IS THE PURPOSE of this thread, to clear up mis-conceptions. Not, what YOU vs. I define it to be. But, defining the Theory of Evolution, external to opinions, as set by the theory's parameters itself (and thus, clearing up its terminology) to set the base for future debate on this topic (see OP's post). It's like playing a sport and making up your own rules and then saying, 'I win'. There are certain regulations, for a practical reason.

As such, adaption as Is too hot used it, in terms of elements, cannot be logically extrapolated to mean what it does in the context of the Theory of Evolution. They're different things. Word: rose. This rose smells so sweet. The lady rose from her seat.
You cannot hold yourself 'correct' if you fail to recognize that the SAME word MEAN different things in different context. If you want to stubbornly only choose to see 'rose' meaning 'flower' only....that fault is on you. Not the person who has explained that it can mean to rise.

Thus, this is not a totally valid point:

Quite the reverse. I could not understand YOU, because you are not able to distinguish between jargon and language. I deal with computers. I have to translate everything I say into jargon with programmers, and everything into basic English with everyone else. Sometimes I have to do both, because I am often working with people who know some programming languages and skills but not others. So it's again something I take for granted. Sometimes people don't understand everything I say, but if it's because I used jargon, then part of that is MY fault, not theirs. So if I don't understand something you say, I will endeavour to understand it. But I'm not going to go away and get a degree in evolutionary biology just so you can talk in jargon.


The onus of 'fault' lies in the person who has chosen the endeavour to LEARN. By partaking in this debate (and the other one), you are CHOOSING to enter the realm of evolutionary biology (when you want to take it on, counter it)...thus, it is intellectual honesty to practice (or, if not known, to go and learn, or ASK) using the terms as they are meant. You can take on the 'evidence' posited for it...but, not the terms. That's shoddy debating. Terms are set, lines are drawn. Start debating the real meat.


What do you call it when a species dies out due to the introduction of a predator species such as humans, or any species they brought with, or any species brought with that ate their food supply, that were introduced due to the travel to the location of the species of the dodo? I believe that travel of several animals from one location to another is called migration. Please explain how this is not evolution. Please name the theory that explains the origin of which species developed to be at this moment in time, which is often referred to as the Origin of Species. It cannot be evolution, as the dodo is no longer here, and you said that's not evolution. Please provide me with all this, so that I can post it to every website that claims that the Theory of Evolution explains the Origin of Species.


Evolutionary biology makes a distinction for extinction due to (1) natural forces, (2) human activity. Dodos' case falls in the latter. Modern human activity (e.g., guns, etc) cannot be fitted into the natural model for evolution, as modern means of 'man' (and technology) are way too fast for most species to keep up, and dodos, poor suckers were flightless and stuck on an island. This lies solely on the folley of the humans. Such that poaching gorillas and shooting them dead does not mean that gorillas 'are evolving towards extinction'. It is only, and only, the fault of humans.

And, no that is not migration in terms of how it's used in evolutionary biology. Remember where I mentioned migration?


C) HOW are 'new' or 'altered' traits brought about in evolution? By: 1) mutation, 2) migration (between population, or between species), 3) lateral gene transfer (LGT)


Thus, in these terms (Theory of Evolution), migration is only concerned with the movement of genes from one pop. to another. As Mauritius was, at the time when Dodos were there, not inhabited by 'locals'/humans, and isolated, this would make the concept of 'migration' null & void, as there is no 'gene flow from ONE pop. to ANOTHER'.


That is a massively encompassing statement. It encompasses ALL organisms, or only SOME organisms, and SOME organisms would mean that you would have to prove evolution is true on an organism-by-organism basis


Ya, scientific methodology works like this when positing a scientific theory whereas there's such a thing called either testing predictions AND....falsifiability. I.e., a theory is said to have weight when facts (evidence) are tested for reliability & validated, more and more facts where it becomes hard NOT to affirm the theory. However, just like any scientific theory, evolution can still be falsified. We only need ONE piece of evidence that contradicts it, and the cookie shall crumble. Yet to come up with even one, in over 100 years, while the vast amount of evidence has SUPPORTED it. I don't think you truly understand scientific inquiry of empirical investigations. Just like the theory of general relativity states that space & time cannot be separated, i.e., spacetime and that its curvature is dependent on mass-energy and the momentum of a matter and it's radiation. Does this mean THAT EVERY matter has been tested (including matter outside of earth)? Even found? In every state radiational state? No. So, should we not then even consider the theory? That's ridiculous!

*Btw, in mathematics, the concept of theory is used very differently. I.e, it means different types of knowledge in math, or set of statements.


The theory of relativity DOES include the origin of the universe, because relativity has to apply in all places and times, including the origin of the universe! Where did you get the idea that it didn't?

Pray tell, what is the origin of the universe? Remember, singularity is a well-accepted "THEORY"...but we haven't proven without a SHADOW of DOUBT that it was a singularity (Big Bang Theory)...cuz as you seem to say, it's 'only' a theory. So, applying the same rigors you seem to expect out of evoutionary theory....do the same for this. Tell me how it works out. Wait, you tried:


The only reason that relativity doesn't typically include a discussion of the origin of the universe, is that it is a mechanism of behaviour, like genetics. It describes how things can change. One doesn't need to discuss abiogenesis or evolution to discuss genetics.


Genetics is a mechanism of behaviour? What? And, EVOLUTION DOESN"T EXPLAIN HOW THINGS CHANGE? Hello...what do you think evolutionary theory IS? Evolution....say it slowly, evo-lu-tion...evolve....change.


There is a similarity between evolution and relativity. If the behaviour of the universe, at any point, was not consistent with relativity, relativity would be proved false. The same would be true of evolution.

Exactly, so, why again are you not considering why relativity doesn't HAVE TO EXPLICITLY state the origin of the universe, but, evolution HAS TO, for the origin of LIFE? I still don't get your distinction.


If I was being intellectually dishonest, this would have been clear from my previous posts, so your first post to me should have been to accuse me of intellectual dishonesty.

It would be short-sighted, and erronous, of me to say you were intellectually dishonest right off the start, as it very well could be that you don't know better. Thus, I can only make the claim in subsequent posts, when I've CLEARED something for you, given you what it means, and you *still* go back to the erronous terms......this then validates that yes, indeed, it was NOT knowing better, but, intellectual dishonesty.


But you have to discuss what is relevant.


You've still not made a valid case for why origin of life is relevant to the origin of species (remember, tackle what origin of species is meant to posit first...understand...then, counter).


If that is true, then you are perfectly right in that you and I cannot discuss evolution, because I ask questions, and I am not satisfied to accept what others tell me unless I understand it for myself. So I'm going to require a pretty high level of understanding about anything, relative to most people I know, because I won't take things on face value, and because when I do, I find it extremely difficult to do even simple tasks in that subject.


There's a difference in being a skeptic, and questioning, and being willfully ignorant to what something IS as it calls itself to be. Tell me, if you meet a dude named John, do you say, "no, I don't believe you're John, I think you're Dave...prove otherwise". You are quite right and accurate to not believe John when he says he is truthful (and thus, he may very well be lying about his name), but, you gotta attack the credibility first, and not simply keep saying, "no, you're not John, but, Dave". This becomes circular. So, if a theory calls itself something...you GOTTA accept what it calls itself, and the definition it gives its terms. You can argue about the context of the theories, but, not the terms. That's surface BS!! Hence, I sugguest that you think of one MORE thing that you need in order for you and I to discuss evolution, and, it's not just 'understanding for yourself', but WILLINGNESS TO LEARN & UNDERSTAND, is the first step.


We've covered how the gears work at least 10 times, and how the brakes work at least 5 times.


Why would you ask HOW the brake worked? Why not ask, why the brake is called a brake? And, why if it is meant to STOP a vehicle, why does different pressure on the brake slow it down vs stop? Why not ask to justify the brake itself first, before jumping to the next stage of HOW it works? You seem to be applying very different criteria to driving than to the inquiry into the Theory of Evolution. Hmmm.....

btw, thanks so much for clarifying I'm a female. :D
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 60
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/18/2008 10:17:25 PM

I will do what I choose to, which includes obeying the rules of POF. You have no effect on me.

You are disobeying the rules of POF when you misquote other posters. If you do it again, I will take it up with with the webmaster.


You may disagree with what I've written. You may not like it. All that is your right.
What is not your right is to claim that you don't like what I write, just because you cannot argue with it.

I certainly disagree with what you've written because you don't know science and have deluded yourself in thinking through topics you obviously don't grasp. I can argue with it plenty but other have and you resist education at every turn. I have no stronger logic that will convert you into one of the sentient.
My main beef with you is that you've quoted me out of context and then have tried to tell me I can't write. One has nothing to do with the other but you don't even seem to realize that.

So, I don't reply to your idiocies. That's my right and in keeping with POF guidelines. If you want to keep up your deceitful methods, I'll do all I can to get you banned. Capice?
 rockondon
Joined: 2/21/2007
Msg: 62
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/19/2008 11:41:47 AM

MSG 33: we have no fossil records of fish with wings to suggest such chaotic attempts were made before finally getting it right
Evolution works by making slight modifications to existing features. If the raw materials aren't there, or the energy cost is too high, the trait will not evolve even if it is beneficial.
MSG 67: Also, it seems that evolutionists all agree that such speciation happens gradually over millions of years.
Couldn't be more wrong. Speciation has been observed numerous times. The typical delusional response to this however is to compare both species, ignore the differences, then convince yourself they are the same species.
MSG 67: That is why I believe that in order for the Theory of Evolution to properly address The Origin of Species, it must include abiogenesis.
Why abiogenesis? Evolution has no problem at all explaining how life evolved whether it was created by God, aliens, a meteor from another planet, a magic teacup, or whatever.
It seems to me that the reason that anti-evolutionists insist that evolution 'must' include abiogenesis is because abiogenesis does not have the huge mountains of evidence supporting it that evolution does. Connecting one to the other correlates a lack of evidence to something that has tons of it. My sympathies to those who must engage in self-deceit to maintain their belief system.
MSG 70: Theory of Adaptational Evolution
When some people are confronted with scientific truths that are difficult to accept, a common tactic is to move the goalposts by accepting nonsense or poorly defined terms, or less disagreeable versions such as microevolution instead of simply evolution (as though they aren't the same process), or 'adaptation' in place of evolution, or you can ramble on about how scientists are biased/rude/arrogant/don't like bunnies/liars/etc while keeping yourself oblivious to the fact that science is believed because of the evidence - not the authority of scientists.
Incidentally, macroevolution is nothing more than a lot of microevolution. Denying macro is like looking at a puzzle you don't like and refusing to accept, but you do admit the pieces are there. Every great journey is made of little steps.
MSG 70: I KNOW that most people don't want to consider evolution with abiogenesis. But I'm still hoping that logic and reason prevail in science.
Logic and reason huh? ...the irony.

MSG 80: You're expecting one theory to encompass EVERYTHING...why is that?
BECAUSE THAT IS THE PREMISE OF THE THEORY!
Obviously, no theory explains everything. Trying to expand the arena of evolution's explanatory power and then pointing out what it doesn't explain is a straw man argument.
MSG 80: I believe that the theory of evolution should be treated the same way as any other theory.
No you don't - you wish to raise the bar for proof to impossible heights, not because you don't think it is true, but because you don't want it to be true. It is treated like any other theory - it is scrutinized, it is tested, it is measured, it is in practical use in many fields, and it has withstood the test of time and grows stronger every day. If your objections were scientific instead of religious, then why do you not object to other far less proven scientific theories?

MSG 80: Life, however, exists. Period.
Can you prove that? I can prove there is life on Earth. I cannot prove there is life on the moon.
Now there's a nonsense reply if I ever read one.
MSG 80: The theory of evolution is based on the idea that the origin of life is NOT the same as the origin of all species but one. So the evidence for this would be the evidence for the theory of evolution. If one is true, the other is also. If one is false, the other is false also.
Falsifying abiogenesis would not falsify evolution. Falsifying evolution would falsify evolution.
MSG 80: So I have far more respect for scientists who research abiogenesis. At least they are trying to push the boundaries of science, rather than just trying to support what most scientists already accept, and don't even manage to convince sceptics like me, who have no reason, religious or otherwise, to not accept evolution
lol, that was entertaining.
Scientists have tried to disprove evolution for 150 years, fame and fortune is the prize to anyone who does it, but the evidence all points unambiguously in support of evolution. They don't support each other because they want to, if anything the opposite is true, they support each other because evolution is right.
MSG 80: I think about the possibilities that which others avoid. That is what makes me an innovator.
You desperately grab for alternate possibilities when the truth is too difficult to accept. Being an innovator doesn't mean pulling the wool over your eyes.
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 63
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/19/2008 6:11:57 PM
Regardless, I will make a statement about the THEORY of evolution....Regardless, I will make a statement about the THEORY of evolution....All the arguements for this theory are based ON theory. And no amount of trying to rationalise it, no matter how well meaning, will change the true facts because of it's hypotheticality.

Do you ever get tired of being wrong? Your posts demonstrate a fundamental ignorance of the meaning of "theory" and "hypothesis" when used in a scientific context. Also, there is overwhelming evidence in support of the Theory of Evolution. Merely because you haven't educated yourself about it won't make it go away.

Please, buy that dictionary!

Edited to add: I see you made a similarly ignorant post at #76 and you were challenged in #77 to provide evidence for your statements. You failed to do so. Why? Never mind. I know why.
 quietcowboy
Joined: 12/25/2007
Msg: 64
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/19/2008 8:26:21 PM

Do you ever get tired of being wrong? Your posts demonstrate a fundamental ignorance of the meaning of "theory" and "hypothesis" when used in a scientific context. Also, there is overwhelming evidence in support of the Theory of Evolution. Merely because you haven't educated yourself about it won't make it go away.


I'm going to have to disagree with you here. He hasn't even met the standard of being wrong, its more in the "not even wrong" pile.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 65
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/19/2008 10:20:56 PM
RE msg 89 by qriosity:

Let us clarify the subject in the context: The context of this discussion is the forums of POF. Thus it is bound by the rules of POF.
1) POF is NOT an forum for evolutionary biologists.
2) POF doesn't require you to use the terms of evolutionary biology.
3) POF rules state the you are not allowed to polarise threads by demanding that only evolutionary biologists respond to a particular thread, on any forum, or by demanding that only certain language is used, unless that is clearly specified by the opening post, or possibly by the OP in a later post, that clarifies the opening post. The topic is the opening post. Unless the terms you have used subsequently were specifically mentioned and defined in the opening post, or by the OP in a later post, those terms are not subject to the definitions you learned in your studies.
4) POF rules state that the subject of the thread is the subject of the opening post: what each poster defines as the theory of evolution, and whether they disagree with the definition stated in the opening post. Anything else is off-topic. So demanding that I adhere to the definitions that you claim must be adhered to, is NOT the subject of this thread, and is off-topic. Posting off-topic is not allowed. There is a reasonable amount of leeway given, but there is a limit.
5) Hijacking a thread to talk about what you personally consider to be the definitions that must be used in context, and continuing to post on and on about it, until the very subject of the thread becomes lost entirely, is NOT ALLOWED.
ALL OF THIS IS NOT ALLOWED. GOT IT? ALL OF IT!

If you want to use your terms, then there are plenty of forums for evolutionary biologists. You have every right to make your demands there. NOT HERE! If you want to make your demands about terms, THEN GO POST THERE! This is not a thread for evolutionary biologists. It is a thread for everyone, irrespective of their background.

Now, there are many examples of adaptation. For instance, one adapts to one's surroundings. A book that is adapted into a screenplay is called an adaptation. So is a film that is adapted from a book. If there is a term in evolutionary biology called adaptation, that might slightly resemble the English word, but does not mean the same at all, then it is bound to be misinterpreted.

Mathematicians are very careful to be clear in what they say, because they need to do that. That is why mathematicians deliberately choose words to be used that cannot be misconstrued, by not taking an existing word in the English language and using it in a completely different way, and is why mathematicians are careful to always define their terms before usage. If a word is misconstrued, mathematicians blame themselves, not the other person, for not being clear enough, and take the time and trouble to explain their usage of the term in a way that is different from the typical usage. If evolutionary biologists do not make that effort, I feel for you. It would explain a lot of why so much conflict is raised about evolution, and would indicate that most of that conflict is completely unnecessary.

I can well understand having looked it up, that an adaptation in evolutionary biology means a characteristic that has been favoured by natural selection, and increases the fitness of its possessor, and that it is an extremely important concept in evolutionary biology. I can on reflection see what Is too hot meant by his initial comment on my post, in that the concept of adaptation, so central to evolution, would not make any sense in the context of atomic elements. However, that was not my comment. My observation was that when I choose to study how things form, I must look at the factors involved, and the patterns that led us there. That is irrelevant to the objects, and has no bearing on the type of objects, whether they are living organisms or atomic elements.

Now, to adapt, means to fit better within your environment. However, the term adaptation in evolutionary biology, means to develop a characteristic that is favourable to you.

We wouldn't say that an atomic element changes to be more favourable to itself, because it has no desire for life, for living longer, for eating better, for being stronger, or happier, or for having more children. But all atomic elements will attempt to change to become more stable, whenever possible, such as when unstable radioactive isotopes change to become other more stable isotopes.

All elements adjust to their environment, such as when water is put into a freezing cold environment, it will cool down and become ice. It adapts to its environment. But it wouldn't adapt to become more favourable to itself, because it has no desire to make life "better" for itself. It still adapts. It just has no concept of favourability.

Most of the time, life will be more favourable to you, to fit better with your environment. But that will not always be true. There will be times when what is most favourable to you, is to NOT change to fit in better with your environment. Hence the 2 concepts are different.

The way you and Is too hot have used the evolutionary concept of adaptation is that adaptation increases favourability all of the time, just because it happens to be so MOST of the time. MOST isn't all, and sometimes it will NOT be favourable to adapt.

That is why you have to be very, very careful to ensure that your choice of terms only require assumptions that are true in every possible situation. If not, you get into this sort of problem. You end up building an entire theory based on a faulty assumptions.

Now, I am wiling to admit that I am wrong. So I put it to you, what is wrong with my statements?
Can you honestly say that adapting to fit with your environment, even if it is unfavourable, even if you choose to do it, even if it is due to artificial selection, doesn't ever happen? Can you honestly say that if the most favourable thing for a species via artificial selection is to become less adapted to your environment, then to become less adapted to your environment is STILL an adaptation?

Now, to respond:


kind of relevant, because Adaptational evolution, or evolution via adaptation is the intersection of evolution with adaptation, and evolution is evolution with or without adapatation. In set theory, these are completely different sets. However, the set of evolution via adaptation is a subset of evolution.
Again, this is nonsense. You can play on words as much as you like, but, if it doesn't generate an actual thought in line with the theory you choose to take on (because you have misinterpreted what the theory itself states)...then, all this is nonsensical ramblings.
If you don't understand set theory, then it would be appropriate to just admit that this is beyond your scope of knowledge.


So although Darwin may not have used the word "genetic", or used it as we might choose to understand it, he could not have developed a theory of natural selection without it, and so it must have been part of his general world-view.
Ya, this is not a new thought, as it is intuitively true, and has been proven as well. Check up the discourse b/w Darwin & Fleeming Jenkins. At the time, the concept of inheritence wasn't anything new (the fact it is carried through in genes, was shed through the initial works of Mendel, and building on that). However, the common (mis)conception at that time, which was Jenkin's position and thus, subsequent critique of natural selection, was that of the 'blending inheritence theory' (that variations DISAPPEARED over generations, i.e., as generations went on, they would be more uniform). Darwin couldn't reconcile that, esp. in the face of his concept of SEXUAL selection. Interestingly enough, Darwin, even not having the priviledge of Mendel's work (he was before Mendel's time/experiments)...he came QUITE close to the same revelation as Mendel.
Not surprising at all. Darwin lived in an age when animals were far more commonly used by most people than today, and when lots of cross-breeding and artificial alterations to species were carried out. It was common knowledge.

All Mendel did was take what everyone else already knew, and formalised it. He applied rigour to common knowledge.

I and my friends grew up learning all about animals, and about how they were bred, because it is part of the laws of our faith that we aren't allowed to use artificial selection. So it was common knowledge to us.

To most people today, that would be surprising, because the only animals you see in society today are pets and pre-prepared food in supermarkets, and most people just don't have any personal requirements to know about artificial selection. So they wouldn't understand genetics innately.

If your average guy today had never heard of genetics, or GM food, or DNA, or anything like that, or evolution or natural selection, and then proposed that there was a theory of evolution that seemed to match genetics, that would be a revelation. Darwin saying this wouldn't. In his day, saying that animals aren't affected by the rules of genetics would be a massive revelation, because that was common knowledge to so many people.

Did YOU grow up knowing all about artificial selection, that it was practised by most societies for thousands of years, and even as far back as the Sumerians? Would Mendel's theories be surprising to YOU if you did? Would YOU be surprised if Darwin's theories matched genetics?

RA Fisher (statistics birthfather - Fischer's exact-test and so forth) found a letter of Darwin to Huxley, in 1857:
"I have lately been inclined to speculate, very crudely and indistinctly, that propagation by true fertilisation will turn out to be a sort of mixture, and not true fusion, of two distinct individuals, or rather of innumerable individuals, as each parent has its parents and ancestors."
I suggest you look at here: http://www.economics.soton.ac.uk/staff/aldrich/Figures.htm

That page gives a brief synopsis of the major figures in the development of statistics. As you can see, Fisher is a rather late addition, even after Markov, who developed the Markov processes that you see so often mentioned in papers on evolutionary biology.

However, Fisher was the birthfather of a subject, that of the introduction of statistics into evolutionary biology and genetics, as he sought to combine them. He is the birthfather of statistics as far as evolutionary biologists go, because he was an evolutionary biologist. But to say that he was the birthfather of statistics is like saying Dawkins is the birthfather of evolution, simply because he made it so much more popular and accessible.

You haven't understood genetic drift, thus, your examples of the gorilla, and Lamarck, etc, etc, are again, nonsensical & irrelevant.

To put simply, natural selection - non-random, genetic drift -random (yes).
Sorry. I grew up seeing that random changes happen all the time. If you also grew up with a working knowledge of animals and plants, then you know that random mutations happen all the time, because you see them all the time. It's no big idea to say this happens. It would be a big idea to me to say that such random mutations might be a part of evolution, because they happen so often that it would be surprising to me to that we haven't seen lots of new species in our lifetime, from existing species. Really. My father used to own a chicken farm. I've seen deformed animals. If that affects evolution, I would have expected to see new species all the time. So that might be the meaning of the term. I just assumed there had to be more to it, because again it's just such common knowledge to me, my friends, and the generations of Darwin's time. But I get that most people of today wouldn't see that. I cannot imagine that your local supermarket would sell a deformed chicken.


So clearly, in order for any species to develop new genetic traits that weren't present before in the existing species, genetic drift would have to have been in the original theory.
Wrong! Nothing of this sort happens. A "new" genetic trait doesn't just POP up due to genetic drift (only by mutation, migration, LGT...remember my previous post, I explained this already!). Genetic drift, as its simplest, is that, not ALWAYS is there 'survival of the fittest', as in, sometimes, by chance, certain individuals leave behind more descendants than others, not cuz they're 'healthier', but by chance survival....and thus, THOSE genes has more chances of being passed on in future generations, which changes the gene frequency in the population, affecting future generations, and so forth. There is no "new" genes relevance in discussing genetic drift. That's a whole different section.
Sorry again. My understanding of evolution was that it was based on genetics. To my understanding, the traits would be dependent on the genes. So it would occur to me that if a gene was favoured by natural selection, then it had to exist in the gene pool, so the trait would be present in some of the species. If the species developed a wholly new trait, then it still had to be in the original species. So all the new traits had to be present in at least one of each of its ancestor species. That would mean to me that at least one of the first reptiles had to be warm-blooded, or at least possess some of the traits of thermal homeostasis, and similarly for all traits. AFAIK, according to the theory of evolution, species have developed wholly new traits, and that Darwin believed so too. So I cannot reconcile the idea of natural selection alone with the idea that species developed some wholly new traits.

Please tell me how Darwin envisaged that species developed some wholly new traits without genetic drift, or how Darwin explained the evolutionary chain without any wholly new traits. I'd love to know.

And....? What's the point to this? We're looking at the theory/concept/idea, not, therefore, extrapolating the idea to the source of the idea and that, the idea itself somehow connected to the characteristics of the source. That's ridiculous! James Watson, one of the fathers of DNA, says that one can link race with intelligence, and he believed it can be proven genetically (it cannot). Dude was a f-ing racist!If we believe that the idea has to always aling with the source, then, whoever believes in genetics and DNA should hail to racism. Yeahhhhh..... Thus, what Mendel's thought on theology, god, whatever was, is irrelevant to looking at his contribution to the inheritence theory.
I am not sure you understand Watson's point. So I'll explain my understanding of his view:
1) According to the theory of evolution, later species have more favourable heritable traits. This is also true of later sub-species. This is also true of any subset of a species which has different genes to the earlier group.
2) Greater intelligence is favourable.
3) According to the current theories about evolution, all humans evolved from the black humans in Africa.
4) Different groups of humans have different levels of intelligence.
5) So if there is any difference of intelligence between groups, black humans would have the least favourable traits that are different in different groups of humans, which would include intelligence.
6) There has been a lot of discussion that black people in the UK and the US have had lower academic results than other groups, supporting the hypothesis.
Please understand that I am not a racist. I know that ancient African civilisations were very advanced, possibly more advanced in some ways than our own civilisation. My family have African ancestry to some degree, and I have always enjoyed plenty of intelligent discussions with black people, including Africans. So I don't believe that Africans or anyone black is less intelligent than whites. But I cannot find fault in Watson's logic. That is another reason why I still have trouble understanding evolution. Perhaps you can explain exactly how a group that evolved from an earlier group, that developed favourable characteristics, and that intelligence would be amongst them, could still be considered to have the same intelligence as the original group.

Um...thanks. Kinda knew that already as my mama is a deeply religious woman, and she also has a PhD in Biological Anthropology, and thus, fully supports evolution. You assumed I would think otherwise, erronously so.
Well, you are surprising to me, because I've read a lot of posts on POF about evolution, and up until now, I've seen very few posters that claimed that evolution and theism were even compatible, I being one of them (I even started a thread about this), and nearly all the posts I've seen say the exact opposite.

FYI, although I learned quite a lot of evolution from school (Uni..even though it's not my specialization, took courses for fun), she was a key teacher of mine too, from quite the young age. My initial interest in this field started quite young when my mom would sometimes take me to her Uni (lab) and they had the coolest creatures (or so it seemed to me) in jars in the lab, skeleton animals, fossils, and other such things. So, no, I'm not brandishing book-learnin' (only) when discussing evolution; as, through her collegues and friends, I got to learn first hand, through dialogue, questioning, discussion. Which has made me realize I only know the surface of evolutionary theory.
Nice to know.

Why would I take him to task? You have failed to understand what he has said, and, then, out of context, taken a term he used and applied it to another, completely different scenario. That's shoddy! Or, perhaps, you didn't know better. What I think is failing us from progressing in this debate is that you are refusing to accept that there are certain parameters within a debate.
You are right. I didn't know better. I've used the word adaptation for 30 years, including speaking around people who believed in evolution, and biologists, and I've used it a fair bit, and I had to study English for 11 out of my 12 school years as well. This is the first time anyone has ever had a problem with my use of the word adaptation. Ever. I find it very surprising that a word that is part of my basic vocabulary for such a long time, and with exposure to so many experts in English, has suddenly been revealed to be so erroneous. I can only imagine that it would feel the way to an evolutionary biologist to find that after using the word "evolution" for 30 years, suddenly found that someone told them that they had been using it completely incorrectly. Would that not be surprising to you? If you found that people corrected you on your usage a lot, especially English teachers and lecturers, then this would not be surprising. But what if it was the other way around? That whenever people disagreed with your usage of a word, and you referred to an English teacher, that you were told that you were using the correct diction? Wouldn't you be surprised?

No. You HAVE to not, 1) used the terms, 2) use them in the proper context.
You have to not used the terms? You have to not use them in the proper context? I cannot think of any context that it would be possible for such a sentence to make any sense at all. Can you please clarify the rules of grammar that apply here that allow your sentence to be comprehensible? If your sentence is grammatically incorrect, can you please clarify what you meant to say?

In scientific inquiry, we call them operational definitions.

An operational definition is a demonstration of a process — such as a variable, term, or object — relative in terms of the specific process or set of validation tests used to determine its presence and quantity. Properties described in this manner must be publicly accessible so that persons other than the definer can independently measure or test for them at will. An operational definition is generally designed to model a conceptual definition.

The most basic operational definition is a process for identification of an object by distinguishing it from its background of empirical experience. The binary version produces either the result that the object exists, or that it doesn't, in the experiential field to which it is applied. The classifier version results in discrimination between what is part of the object and what is not part of it. This is also discussed in terms of semantics, pattern recognition, and operational techniques, such as regression.

For example, the weight of an object may be operationally defined in terms of the specific steps of putting an object on a weighing scale. The weight is whatever results from following the measurement procedure, which can in principle be repeated by anyone. It is intentionally not defined in terms of some intrinsic or private essence. The operational definition of weight is just the result of what happens when the defined procedure is followed. In other words, what's being defined is how to measure weight for any arbitrary object, and only incidentally the weight of a given object.

Operational definitions are also used to define system states in terms of a specific, publicly accessible process of preparation or validation testing, which is repeatable at will. For example, 100 degrees Celsius may be crudely defined by describing the process of heating water until it is observed to boil. An item like a brick, or even a photograph of a brick, may be defined in terms of how it can be made. Likewise, iron may be defined in terms of the results of testing or measuring it in particular ways.

One simple, every day illustration of an operational definition is defining a cake in terms of how it is prepared and baked (i.e., its recipe is an operational definition). Similarly, the saying, if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it must be some kind of duck, may be regarded as involving a sort of measurement process or set of tests (see Duck test).
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operational_definition

I understand that one defines the Celsius scale using the operational definition that it is a measure of temperature taking 0 degrees Celsius to be the freezing point of water, and 100 degrees Celsius to be the boiling point of water. However, I cannot see how any term you have used is an operational definition, according to the explanation I quoted. Can you please clarify exactly how your definitions fit the definition of an operational definition?

THIS IS THE PURPOSE of this thread, to clear up mis-conceptions.
I agree that it might seem that the purpose of this thead is to clarify misconceptions. However, AFAIK, the POF rules state that the subject of the thread is the topic stated in the opening post, and AFAIK, that only states that the purpose of the thread is that the OP wants everyone to agree on a definition of the theory of evolution, by getting everyone to state what is their definition of the theory of evolution, and whether or not the other posters agree with the definition stated in the opening post. However, AFAIK, no posters have the right to tell others what words to use on the threads or how, other than the forum rules, and the definition of evolution is not in the forum rules. Moreover the terms genetic drift, natural selection, adaptation, migration, and any other terms you might have heard or read in you studies of evolutionary biology are not mentioned in the opening post, and AFAIK, that would make them all off-topic, which means that according to forum rules, we are NOT supposed to make them a central factor in the thread. I would also caution you that the opening post was deliberately amended by a moderator or the admin to state that all off-topic posts will be deleted. So I gather than it is crucial in this thread to stay on-topic.

Also, since the thread's topic is for posters to simply state their own definitions, why can I not find yours?

But, defining the Theory of Evolution, external to opinions, as set by the theory's parameters itself (and thus, clearing up its terminology) to set the base for future debate on this topic (see OP's post). It's like playing a sport and making up your own rules and then saying, 'I win'. There are certain regulations, for a practical reason.
If you want to post on a forum where everyone has to use the terms you have learned, then I would suggest that you try a forum for evolutionary biologists. Things are more informal here, as POF is for everyone. It's part of the rules. You cannot even start a thread that only people who use your terms can comment on. If you even state it as a condition in any of your posts, the whole thread will be deleted.

There are unwritten forum protocols, that everyone here generally abides by. But its entirely informal. It would take a general consensus for everyone to agree to use certain terms in future, from all posters, including those who have little or no knowledge of these terms, and including people who don't believe in evolution at all. Otherwise, the threads requiring use of those terms would be polarised, and polarised threads are completely banned in all ways on POF.

As such, adaption as Is too hot used it, in terms of elements, cannot be logically extrapolated to mean what it does in the context of the Theory of Evolution.
I quite agree, if this thread was on a site devoted to evolutionary biology. But it's not.

They're different things. Word: rose. This rose smells so sweet. The lady rose from her seat.
I agree that the word rose is a homograph. However, it's a homograph in the English language. Adaptation is not. It would be no different than if I started a thread about websites, and you compared a website to a house, and I said that you cannot do that, because a website has an address and a house doesn't. What I would saying is true in the context of websites, because a website has an address, sometimes called an internet address, a set of 4 numbers ranging from 0-255, and a house doesn't have such an address, and in the English language, a house address means something else entirely. However, POF is not for website experts, nor evolutionary biologists. It's for everyone. So I would be wrong to do so here. I would be correct to say that only on a site about websites, and you would only be right to do the same with the word adaptation on a website devoted to evolutionary biology.

You cannot hold yourself 'correct' if you fail to recognize that the SAME word MEAN different things in different context. If you want to stubbornly only choose to see 'rose' meaning 'flower' only....that fault is on you. Not the person who has explained that it can mean to rise.
You're right here. The context is POF, not evolutionary biology. The topic of the thread is listing definitions of evolution, not according to terms used in evolutionary biology.

The onus of 'fault' lies in the person who has chosen the endeavour to LEARN. By partaking in this debate (and the other one), you are CHOOSING to enter the realm of evolutionary biology (when you want to take it on, counter it)...thus, it is intellectual honesty to practice (or, if not known, to go and learn, or ASK) using the terms as they are meant. You can take on the 'evidence' posited for it...but, not the terms. That's shoddy debating. Terms are set, lines are drawn. Start debating the real meat.
That is NOT what ANY of my teachers or lecturers EVER said. There is a definite onus on a person who chooses to learn a subject to learn the correct terms. The correct term of a car with a manual transmission is a "manual", NOT a "stick shift". Nevertheless, it is not expected that an American who calls a manual a "stick-shift" has to go back to school before he can discuss driving or even that he would have to re-learn driving before he can become a driving instructor in the UK. Anything else is intellectual dishonesty, because it allows people who use the right jargon, but don't really understand the subject to avoid answering questions from people who are not familiar with those terms. Most of the people here don't know the right terms to use when discussing mathematics, including YOU. You haven't even used the right terms in discussing probabilities, as the probability of evolution being true given that it is true is 1, not 1:1. 13 cards in order is a permutation. YOU didn't use the right terms in the first place. I didn't take you to task for that. If you want me to, then I have no choice but to admit that you don't know the correct terms within Mathematics to discuss the probability of evolution being true in the first place.

While I'm at it, I quote the forum rules of POF:
Polarization

No Thread may exist designated exclusively for Response from a specific Gender, Ethnicity, Orientation, Religion, Public, etc. Such a Thread will be deleted. The entire Concept of a Forum is for anyone to post their Opinions and Thoughts, providing they are On-Topic, on any Threads he or she sees fit.

As an Example:

This is a Question ONLY for the Men to...
This is a Question for the Men to... = No Good !!!
= Is OK !!!


More Examples of No-No's:

* Catholics and Mormons need not reply.

* I only want truthful Answers from real Lawyers.

* I ask that the Elderly not post here because you are not current on ...

* This Thread is not a Playground for colored Girls, as I know ...

* If you are a MacIntosh-Phobe, don't post here !!!

* New Line of Ford Trucks - WOW !!! Chevy Trolls stay out !

* You don't like my Recipe, then make your own Thread what you like.

* Free Enterprise. Gov't Shleps have no Business in here.

* If you haven't been in the Slammer, what are you doing posting ...?


The Common Denominator is:

"You are not Welcome", "Don't post here", "Get Out" ... ie. Exclusion.

Further, any Threads or Topics that call for similar Types of Restrictions may also come under Review on a Case by Case Basis .

Related Issue: Only Guys can post Threads in the "Ask a Girl" Forum, and only Girls can post Threads in "Ask a Guy" Forum.
No thread may exist that excludes anyone from posting on it, and that includes people who don't share your use of terms. I cannot start a thread about the mathematical probability of evolution, and exclude you for not knowing the right terms. You cannot exclude me from this thread, even if I don't know the right terms. Although it does not say it here, it used to say that any thread that is polarised will be deleted. I have taken many people to task for this point, stating that I could not reply to threads in Ask a Girl, or that women could not reply to threads in Ask a Guy. This is no different.

What you are advocating would be polarisation of the thread, requiring immediate deletion. Take it up with the mods if you want.


What do you call it when a species dies out due to the introduction of a predator species such as humans, or any species they brought with, or any species brought with that ate their food supply, that were introduced due to the travel to the location of the species of the dodo? I believe that travel of several animals from one location to another is called migration. Please explain how this is not evolution. Please name the theory that explains the origin of which species developed to be at this moment in time, which is often referred to as the Origin of Species. It cannot be evolution, as the dodo is no longer here, and you said that's not evolution. Please provide me with all this, so that I can post it to every website that claims that the Theory of Evolution explains the Origin of Species.
Evolutionary biology makes a distinction for extinction due to (1) natural forces, (2) human activity. Dodos' case falls in the latter. Modern human activity (e.g., guns, etc) cannot be fitted into the natural model for evolution, as modern means of 'man' (and technology) are way too fast for most species to keep up, and dodos, poor suckers were flightless and stuck on an island. This lies solely on the folley of the humans. Such that poaching gorillas and shooting them dead does not mean that gorillas 'are evolving towards extinction'. It is only, and only, the fault of humans.
Sorry. I understood that evolution was about the evolution of species, not species by ALL means other than human action. After all, the meteor that was supposed to kill off the Dinosaurs killed them off far, far quicker than the Dodo, and far quicker than we are killing off the gorillas. In all ways, we can predict clear patterns in the process of extinction by humans, that mimics the actions of extinction by a predator. So logically, I would not consider humans to be a "special" process. However, I can accept that the Theory of Evolution means the process of change excluding humans, but all other methods, including aliens. I can even consider that aliens are excluded, but whales are, and many scientists believe that whales are a sentient species, so sentient species are also considered, just not humans. But I couldn't really be happy working with that definition, as it's like studing survival in every situation in the present day, except near humans, and expecting to understand how the world works. If you know how the animal kingdom works everywhere else, you'd know how it works with humans. If you cannot make sense of humanity, lots of things the animal kingdom does wouldn't make sense either, because although individual humans act using sentience, in groups, herd mentality and mob mentality take over, and statistically, we see a similar effect when we consider the actions of large numbers of humans, or even over a large amount of time, several years.

So I wouldn't look at things that way. It would be like me learning to drive without ever going on fast roads like motorways. I can pass my test without going on a motorway. But I'm not going to let myself loose on the roads until I've had a lesson on the motorway. I need to know what I'm doing.

And, no that is not migration in terms of how it's used in evolutionary biology. Remember where I mentioned migration?
C) HOW are 'new' or 'altered' traits brought about in evolution? By: 1) mutation, 2) migration (between population, or between species), 3) lateral gene transfer (LGT)
Thus, in these terms (Theory of Evolution), migration is only concerned with the movement of genes from one pop. to another. As Mauritius was, at the time when Dodos were there, not inhabited by 'locals'/humans, and isolated, this would make the concept of 'migration' null & void, as there is no 'gene flow from ONE pop. to ANOTHER'.
What you wrote was migration (between population or between species). Any method of transfer between 2 GROUPS of objects such as a population or a species normally refers to the objects, not to components of those objects. E.g. the migration of birds and migration of peoples. So migration, according to your words, would mean migration of organisms, NOT gene migration. Otherwise, the migration of birds would mean that the genes move south for the winter but the birds stay in the same place, and the migration of peoples would mean that the genes of those peoples moved, but not the peoples themselves. The huns migrated into Europe. Are you saying the huns never moved, but their genes did?

My source:
mi·grate –verb (used without object), -grat·ed, -grat·ing.
1. to go from one country, region, or place to another.
2. to pass periodically from one region or climate to another, as certain birds, fishes, and animals: The birds migrate southward in the winter.
3. to shift, as from one system, mode of operation, or enterprise to another.
4. Physiology. (of a cell, tissue, etc.) to move from one region of the body to another, as in embryonic development.
5. Chemistry.
a. (of ions) to move toward an electrode during electrolysis.
b. (of atoms within a molecule) to change position.
6. (at British universities) to change or transfer from one college to another.
[Origin: 1690–1700; < L migratus (ptp. of migrare to move from place to place, change position or abode), equiv. to migra- v. s. + -tus ptp. suffix]

—Related forms
mi·gra·tor, noun

—Synonyms 1. move, resettle. Migrate, emigrate, immigrate are used of changing one's abode from one country or part of a country to another. To migrate is to make such a move either once or repeatedly: to migrate from Ireland to the United States. To emigrate is to leave a country, usually one's own (and take up residence in another): Each year many people emigrate from Europe. To immigrate is to enter and settle in a country not one's own: There are many inducements to immigrate to South America. Migrate is applied both to people or to animals that move from one region to another, esp. periodically; the other terms are generally applied to movements of people.
—Antonyms 1. remain.
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/migrating

Please show me where in any way, shape or form, migration refers to genes. If it does in your world, then please remember, that you are no longer in you back yard. You are on POF.

Ya, scientific methodology works like this when positing a scientific theory whereas there's such a thing called either testing predictions AND....falsifiability. I.e., a theory is said to have weight when facts (evidence) are tested for reliability & validated, more and more facts where it becomes hard NOT to affirm the theory. However, just like any scientific theory, evolution can still be falsified. We only need ONE piece of evidence that contradicts it, and the cookie shall crumble. Yet to come up with even one, in over 100 years, while the vast amount of evidence has SUPPORTED it. I don't think you truly understand scientific inquiry of empirical investigations. Just like the theory of general relativity states that space & time cannot be separated, i.e., spacetime and that its curvature is dependent on mass-energy and the momentum of a matter and it's radiation. Does this mean THAT EVERY matter has been tested (including matter outside of earth)? Even found? In every state radiational state? No. So, should we not then even consider the theory? That's ridiculous!
Actually, the subject of validation is slightly more involved than that. Consider the theory that all coins minted by a certain person in the treasury are always going to land heads in a toss. You might try one coin, then another, then another. The more coins it works for, the more you assume that it's true for ALL coins. Now suppose that someone else claims that HE has a coin that was minted by that person that DOESN'T land on heads, at least not every time. Will anyone abandon the theory? Of course not. We've tried it for thousands of times. We can see that it's true. That person personally is mistaken. The coin was probably made by someone else. It was probably made and then someone else added a balance to the tails side later. We aren't going to abandon a theory just because someone has a contradiction. We only abandon a theory once we see that it is false more often than true, or that there is another theory which fits the data and our understanding far better than the original. Until that happens, we will stick to the original theory, no matter what.

After all, we did that with Newton. Ever since Newton published his theory, there were many facts and pieces of evidence that contradicted his theory. It was clear from Brahe's tables, and you can verify it yourself with a telescope. But his theory was mostly right, and it was a lot closer to the evidence than it was away from the contradictions. So we stuck with it.

Then we came to Einstein, and Einstein fitted both the data and our understanding far better than Newton. It makes a lot more sense to say "everything is relative", because it is. If you are sitting in a train moving at 100mph, and you walk along the train, you feel exactly the same as if the train was stationary. If you are driving, you see other cars moving at the same speed as you as if they are stationary. They look the same as if they aren't moving. Everything appears and acts relative to your speed. So Einstein's theory actually made more sense than Newton. It's just that it made it much more difficult to get answers when you tried to do the Mathematics.

So when we say that a theory has been around for 100 years and we've never proved it false, what we really mean, is that we imagine that if there was a counter-example, that we would have dropped the theory at once. But we don't do that, not anywhere. So what really happens, is that the evidence for evolution has been collected into several groups of evidence, and there are plenty of counter-examples, but that each counter-example was presented by itself and compared to several of those groups, making it appear as if there was one contradiction against many supporting facts, making us reject the counter-example each time. We can do this thousands of times, until there are far more counter-examples than supporting facts, because we are never collecting all the counter-examples in one place, and all the supporting facts in one place, so that we can weigh them up.

It's like the woman with an abusive boyfriend. Before she gets serious with him, she lists all his pros and cons, and sees there are lots more pros than cons. Then she finds a con, but that ONE con is far less than the LOTS of pros, so she stays with him. That's why she makes an excuse for him. She means that there are still far more pros than cons. She says that again and again. But it's only once she sits down and makes a new list. Only then does she see that he NOW has far more cons than pros. The minute she sees that, she drops him. But you have to get her to make the list before she'll see it.

That is what I advocate with evolution. Make a comprehensive list of supporting facts and counter-examples. Don't be stingy. List them all. Don't worry about if you're going to prove evolution wrong, or right. It's the best way to find the truth. But only once you've gathered every piece of data that might be relevant, every pro and every con, only THEN give them each a weight, and only THEN count them up, so you can see which one has more.

I am advocating that as an acid test for evolution, because it allows us to have ALL the data at our fingertips, which is very useful even if we believe evolution to be 100% true, and because it allows us to add new evidence to the list, thus allowing us to update our views as we gain more evidence for and against.

It seems that many people believe that it is impossible to accomplish this task, and that it would show nothing. I believe that it is very possible, and it would give us lots of answers, on the likelihood of evolution, and on how living beings developed and on how they work in general.

*Btw, in mathematics, the concept of theory is used very differently. I.e, it means different types of knowledge in math, or set of statements.
Seems that wasy, doesn't it? Calculus is called a theory. Actually the theory of calculus is a set of theorems and propositions. Half of them are the theorems about limits, not calculus. The other half are differentiation and integration of the real number system, both 2 methods which are treated separately, but which happen to be the inverses of each other, the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus. That is all you generally learn in the Theory of Calculus. Complex analysis, the calculus of complex planes, is left out. So are Hahn-Banach spaces, multi-dimensional calculus. So the theory of calculus doesn't even mean a type of knowledge, because it includes stuff which isn't calculus, and doesn't include stuff which IS part of calculus.

So what do we mean by the Theory of Calculus? Typically, we mean everything from limits to the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus. We mean the "theory" of calculus, the "idea" of calculus, which is the idea of differentiation and integration, and how one is the reverse of the other. The stuff you learn in the Theory of Calculus is the stuff that is part of the theory and is relevant to the idea, which includes the basic definition of what integration and differentiation are, and the series of proofs that lead up to the proof that these things exist, and how each is an inverse of the other. The "theory" is the essential idea, and we stuff it with the proof that the theory works.

If we did that with evolution, then we would say that the theory of evolution includes the proof of evolution, including the entire fossil record, and we cannot say we know the theory of evolution without including all of that. That's still ongoing. So the theory is still a working draft. It's not been formalised. In Mathematics, that would be called a Conjecture, a Scientific Hypothesis. At best, all we would say is that evolution is a "theory", an "idea", with many possible conjectures and possibilities. But nothing more.

If you like, a mathematical Theory is an idea with all of the theorems that are relevant to it, or at least are relevant to establishing it as true beyond doubt. Is that what the OP meant when he asked for a definition of the Theory of Evolution? Did he mean to list the entire fossil record in this post, and every paper that gives increased likelihood to the possibility of evolution being true?

That is why I believe that the term "theory" refers only to its etymological meaning, an idea, and the rest is just extras. After all, if you taught the idea of calculus, you'd have finished the course in 10 minutes. You need something to teach for the rest of the year.

Pray tell, what is the origin of the universe? Remember, singularity is a well-accepted "THEORY"...but we haven't proven without a SHADOW of DOUBT that it was a singularity (Big Bang Theory)...cuz as you seem to say, it's 'only' a theory. So, applying the same rigors you seem to expect out of evoutionary theory....do the same for this. Tell me how it works out. Wait, you tried:
When I was growing up in the 1970s, there were FIVE current theories on how the universe started with the inclusion that there could be many more. Only one is currently mentioned that of the Big Bang. That was the most unlikely of the five. As of yet, I've not heard anyone mention the other four, or why they've been rejected.

I did hear of one professor who developed an alternative to the Copenhagen Interpretation based on the idea of multiple parallel universes. The scientific community completely rejected his work and he lost almost all hope for life, and suffered from a great depression ever since, and died that way.

So here I am, hearing that there were 5 theories on the origin of the universe, and suddenly everyone is talking about the Big Bang and nothing else. I cannot ask you about the others, because I have no idea if you even heard of them. You'd have to have learned physics in the 70s. Who did that? I was informed that back then, only 8% of people in the UK went to university at all, maybe even less.

On the subject of singularities, many people have now heard of them, but most people don't know what they really ARE. I did study them in 2nd year. A singularity is a point with no size at which the rate of change is either unmeasureable (unknowable), or infinite (bigger than anything we can imagine). Let me give you an example. If you let the tap run in the sink, you'll see the water flow around the plughole. It will get closer and closer to the centre of the hole, and then combine to form a flow that is bigger than the centre. You never see the water join into the centre itself. It just doesn't happen. That is the nature of a singularity. You never see what it does, and you never know what it does. If you do know what it does, what it does is something beyond your imagination.

When we consider the universe, Hubble observed the universe was expanding. That would show the universe was more and more compact as we go backwards in time. We might imagine that means that it eventually started off at a single point. But that never happens in reality. What happens, is that we only get to work out what happens 1 millisecond AFTER the Big Bang, once it started expanding. If the universe began at a single point, we would have several problems:

That point would have zero size, and therefore any mass or energy contained in it would have INFINITE mass or energy. If that mass or energy was flung outwards, it would have INFINITE momentum. That means that it would continue to have infinite momentum. Every quark in the universe would then continue to have infinite momentum and everything would be infinitely far from each other. The universe wouldn't be expanding. Every quark would be so far from every other quark that each quark would act as if it was in its own universe. So each quark would be another universe, so each quark would have to have its own big bang, and then you'd have the same problem again.

From what I've read, Einstein's formulas show that the universe would have had to come from a singularity for it to work. But that assumes that Einstein's formula is infinitely perfect. If it's off by even 1 trillion-th, or any error at all, then the real formual would look slightly different and something else could result.

All we can say is that as we go backwards in time, the universe gets smaller and smaller, AS IF it started from a singularity. But we can never say what happened at the singularity itself. It is part and parcel of the definition of a singularity that we cannot know what happens at a singularity.

It could easily be that it goes to almost a singularity and then expands backwards, as if the universe expands and contracts over time. It could be that it contracts continually, never stopping, just that time slows as we get very close to the singularity, so the Big Bang happened in an infinite number of seconds, forever. It could be that the universe is continually being fed, and that as we get closer to the origin of the universe, more and more energy was output, and now it's down to a tiny trickle, that will get smaller and smaller but never stop. But we'll never know what happened at the Big Bang if it was a singularity, because singularities are just that. Singular events that have singular behaviour. They don't act like anything we know.

Another point that we have to consider is the Third Law of Thermodynamics. According to thermodynamics, everything has a temperature, which is representative of the kinetic energy of atoms. In other words, all atoms are constantly moving, and the faster they move, the hotter they are. The slower they move, the slower they are. However, the third law says that no matter will ever get to absolute zero, which is the point that the atom stops moving. As things approach absolute zero, all entropic processes cease, and as entropic processes are also the processes that bind matter together, if anything ever got to absolute zero, it would literally fall apart. There would be no mass to speak of. Nothing ever gets to absolute zero, and nothing ever stops moving. Even pure energy always travels at the speed of light. So even pure energy never stops moving. So the idea that everything started from a single non-moving point would mean that there were 2 universes: at the Big Bang, and everything afterwards. Again, we can approach the Big Bang, but we cannot EVER say what happened at that point.

We cannot say it was a Big Bang in the first place.

AFAIK, it would be right to say that as we go further and further backwards in time, the universe gets smaller and smaller. I could not reasonbly say much more than that.

Genetics is a mechanism of behaviour? What? And, EVOLUTION DOESN"T EXPLAIN HOW THINGS CHANGE? Hello...what do you think evolutionary theory IS? Evolution....say it slowly, evo-lu-tion...evolve....change.
Genetics defines one method of how things can change. Genetic drift, random mutations, is another such mechanism. Natural selection, the choice of which organism survive and mate, and which of their children survive to mate, is another such method. But evolution is none of these mechanisms. It's the process of how those mechanisms work in reality. It's the difference between tactics and strategy in chess. Genetics is a method, just like taking a pawn is a tactic, a method of achieving change and success in the game. But the strategy, the process and plan of winning the game, is what wins the game, and what defines the end result. Evolution defines that humans came from primates. That's an end result. Each specific evolutionary step is a tactic, which can be defined by genetics, or some other method.

The difference is startling. I can teach you the rules of chess in under 20 minutes. I can teach you good tactics in a month, maybe a week. But good strategy, that takes a lifetime to learn. You're asking to understand how to build a house by knowing the shape and texture of a brick. It's just not possible. You need to build several houses before you understand how to build a house. When you've built several evolutionary paths by designing a world and controlling its environmental changes, and you know what leads to what, then I'd say you understand evolution. Till then, I would call it guesswork, whether its in the field of construction, chess, or evolution. In the UK, they've banned people from doing their own electrical DIY without a qualified professional because of so many accidents, because of so many people who know how to change a fuse and think they understand the whole process. I KNOW the whole process is complicated. So I keep listening until it makes sense. It still doesn't make sense enough I'd let an evolutionary biologist loose on anything I controlled. So I don't have enough evidence to trust them on the present. Why should I trust them on the past any better?


There is a similarity between evolution and relativity. If the behaviour of the universe, at any point, was not consistent with relativity, relativity would be proved false. The same would be true of evolution.
Exactly, so, why again are you not considering why relativity doesn't HAVE TO EXPLICITLY state the origin of the universe, but, evolution HAS TO, for the origin of LIFE? I still don't get your distinction.
Evolution doesn't have to contain abiogenesis to be proved wrong. If you can prove it wrong another way, it would still almost certainly be wrong. But I would never accept relativity as being true, if it didn't have to consistent with the beginnings of the universe, and I would and did consider the effects of relativity on the beginnings of the universe when it first occurred. I couldn't take it seriously otherwise. I demand everything of relativity that I demand of evolution. I demand more of relativity than I do evolution, because I demand that relativity happens this moment, and I don't demand that of evolution.

It would be short-sighted, and erronous, of me to say you were intellectually dishonest right off the start, as it very well could be that you don't know better. Thus, I can only make the claim in subsequent posts, when I've CLEARED something for you, given you what it means, and you *still* go back to the erronous terms......this then validates that yes, indeed, it was NOT knowing better, but, intellectual dishonesty.
Let me be a little clearer. I've been posting for about 15 months now. I've had lots of people correct me on stuff and on diction. But they usually quoted exact detail, and gave sources to back up every part of their claims, to show that they weren't saying this off their own backs, but because lots of people said the same thing. You're telling me about evolution, which seems to me to exclude a lot of what other people say, and you haven't backed it up with sources that clearly show your definitions are exact.

I have nothing against what you said if you provided links to the course syllabuses of evolutionary biology for the top 3 universities in the UK, US and Canada, making 9 in all, which all included these definitions, and said exactly what you wrote, word for word, or something that was so unambiguously and clearly the same as what you wrote, that no-one would ever consider there even a slight discrepancy between the 2, then I would take your word for it.

If you qualified your statements by saying: I think, I believe, AFAIK, or anything else that would allow for the possibility that you are human, and capable of getting only 99% right, I would be more inclined to discuss your definitions further, because IME, people who do that will explain rather than demand I accept their view.

If you quoted sources for your definitions, as so many with so much expertise have done, I'd be able to follow that research. I could even expand on that, and look further afield. But with your definitions, I am forced to scan for a specific definition for a very large general subject. It would be like looking for the definition of democracy. Did you know that Fidel Castro's definition of democracy was "one man with a gun"? A historian told me that one. I honestly believe that 99% of people would never find that one unless they were looking for it, because they wouldn't expect it. But it's still a definition of democracy.

More evidence. Please.

You've still not made a valid case for why origin of life is relevant to the origin of species (remember, tackle what origin of species is meant to posit first...understand...then, counter).
First, I'd like to refer to evolution and abiogenesis, rather than the origin of species, because I was recently reading a post on another thread on evolution that you and I have corresponded on, where it referred to the Supreme Court decision of Edwards v. Aguillard, which was a ruling on evolution, and so I looked it up. In the actual decision, the subject matter is referred to the "origin of life". So it appears that the Supreme Court has passed its ruling on the "origin of life", not the "origin of species". So to avoid confusion, I'd like to avoid those terms, or stick to the Supreme Court's description of things. Fair is fair. They are the law.

Second, understanding evolution is not necessary to understand abiogenesis, just like it's not necessary to understand how to use the brakes to understand how to use the accelerator. But you cannot drive a car without knowledge of both. So you cannot claim lack of relevance just because you can understand one without thinking about the other.

The issue of relevance is if one thing is independent of the other. If 2 things are independent, then changes in one will affect the other.

One of the things we take as a given is that 99% of the behaviour of all things stem from their origins, and that even the slightest change in their origins would mean that we've completely misread the behaviour of that thing.

For medical diagnosis, we require a medical history of the biological parents, and not really the adoptive parents.
When taking any journey, we always start at the beginning and work from there.
When studying any research material, we always look at the very first study made.
We don't even bother with it, if we don't have the beginning. It's just too hard for us to figure out what's going on in the middle.
It would be like taking a boat for 3 days into the middle of the ocean, and then trying to plot a course to visit India. You're pretty much stuffed. But if you know where you started from, even if you don't know the direction, you can calculate where you could have got to, and you can look at the stars and the planets, landmarks, and even things like moss, to narrow down your position.
We even see this in evolution itself. Evolution is defined by our genetics. But our genetics define us, only because we are defined by our birth.

The birth of evolution, and the genes of evolution, are contained in abiogenesis. 99% of our behaviour is down to our birth. So 99% of the behaviour of evolution is down to abiogenesis. The slightest change in the process of abiogenesis would completely change our understanding of how evolution works.

So as far as I can see, abiogenensis is incredibly relevant when discussing evolution. Please explain to me why the behaviour of evolution doesn't need to be based on its birth, but we do.

There's a difference in being a skeptic, and questioning, and being willfully ignorant to what something IS as it calls itself to be. Tell me, if you meet a dude named John, do you say, "no, I don't believe you're John, I think you're Dave...prove otherwise". You are quite right and accurate to not believe John when he says he is truthful (and thus, he may very well be lying about his name), but, you gotta attack the credibility first, and not simply keep saying, "no, you're not John, but, Dave". This becomes circular. So, if a theory calls itself something...you GOTTA accept what it calls itself, and the definition it gives its terms. You can argue about the context of the theories, but, not the terms. That's surface BS!! Hence, I sugguest that you think of one MORE thing that you need in order for you and I to discuss evolution, and, it's not just 'understanding for yourself', but WILLINGNESS TO LEARN & UNDERSTAND, is the first step.
If I were to tell someone who says his name is John, that he is really Dave, then I might be being ignorant. That happened to me a few times. I had a schoolfriend called Mikey. Years later, I was studying at college. By this time, he had studied to pass the qualifications of a Rabbi, and then brought a group on holiday to our college for a summer term. I became friendly with the students, and they spoke about him as their Rabbi. When they pointed him out, I said "that's Mikey!". Because he was Mikey. He was also the Rabbi. But he was still Mikey. I didn't make any issue to push them to call him Rabbi and called him the same when around him and them, because to them he was the Rabbi. But I know him as Mikey.

However, it might be more germane if I give you a better example. If you are invited to meet a family, say the Phelps, and they introduce you to everyone but Fred Phelps, you are going to ask to meet him. If they say that you've met the entire family, you're going to tell them you haven't, because Fred is part of the family. However, if they THEN say that they you were only invited to meet the younger members of the family excluding Fred, then you haven't met the whole family. But you have met everyone you were invited to meet. If people then ask you about what the Phelps family think about religion, you can reply that you are familiar with all of the family except for Fred. But you cannot say that you are familiar with the Phelps. It's just not true. If people then say that since Fred is the patriarch of the Phelps, then he's shaped the viewpoints of the Phelps, and you cannot truly explain their viewpoint without knowing him, then you cannot argue with that. You can say that you know what their viewpoint is, but you cannot know the underlying reasons, you cannot know what they would and wouldn't agree with, other than the things they explicitly said, because you have no contact with the person who truly shaped their viewpoints. You could get to know them well enough to understand them in detail, but then you wouldn't have a few snatches here and there compared to the millions of opinions they had. You had to be with them, through their experiences.

The same thing would be true of evolution. You could know evolution very well, if you lived through 10 million years, and saw the changes yourself. But we only have the tiniest fraction of vision, 100 years compared to 1,000,000,000. We live through 1/ 10,000,000th of the experience of evolution. That would be like spending 5 minutes with the Phelps and saying you know them. The ratio of 5 minutes to 100 years is the same as 100 years is to the 1 billion years of evolution. No-one would say you know what the Phelps believe by knowing them for 5 minutes, or even that you read a few books published by people who knew them for 5 minutes, or even people who saw one of their placards (again, consider the ratio of fossils found compared to the number of organisms and the number of species that would have existed - trillions). You'd have to know them much better than that.

But if you could prove to a friend of theirs that they were racist, then you really know them. He knows them better than you, and he disagrees with you, and you still end up persuading him? I'd say you really know them then. I expect that of gravity, relativity, and electromagnetism. I expect that or my driving instructor. I've argued with him lots of times. He's proved me that he is right. Why can't you?

Why would you ask HOW the brake worked? Why not ask, why the brake is called a brake? And, why if it is meant to STOP a vehicle, why does different pressure on the brake slow it down vs stop? Why not ask to justify the brake itself first, before jumping to the next stage of HOW it works? You seem to be applying very different criteria to driving than to the inquiry into the Theory of Evolution. Hmmm.....
Actually, I HAVE asked HOW the brake works. At this moment, driving lessons cost $46 an hour, and that's with a discount, so I really don't want to spend lots of time on etymology, although my instructor has pointed out that calling it a brake is incorrect, because it really slows the car down, and that is how it should be used, not as a method of stopping the car altogether. But I've also asked him why we change down a gear when we brake, and when. He explained to me that when he learned to drive, you needed to use the gears as well as the brakes to slow down. But modern gears as so efficient that this isn't necessary and you only need to change the gears once, and that is only to switch to the gear appropriate for driving after slowing down, so you should slow down using the brakes, and then change the gear suitable for your new speed, which would be first gear if you've come to a halt. He also said that it's not very bad to use the gears while slowing down, because it confuses you to think that you don't need to brake as much, and distracts you from concentrating on braking well. Also, the brakes don't work anywhere near as effectively when you are changing gears as when you are in gear, so that's another factor. We've also discussed that the brakes don't work very well when they're wet, and so after going through some water that has got the brakes severely wet, you need to run the brakes a few times to dry them off. I've also asked him if the brakes ever fail. He told me that it is incredibly rare. But it did happen to him in over 50 years of driving. So we've considered several different angles about driving.

I always wondered why evolution wasn't called the theory of development of species. Personally, I never heard of the word "evolution" being used except in the case of the theory proposed by Darwin or other theories which are supposed by the speaker to act very, very similarly. So I have no point of reference on the word. But it also doesn't seem to be a word that Darwin made up. I personally think the word "develop" fits the subject matter far better than "evolve", because species that evolved, did develop, and everyone seems to understand what the word develop means, but everyone only knows species that evolve as doing whatever the theory of evolution said they did. If you told a 10-year-old that monkeys evolved via magic, he couldn't argue with you. He doesn't have any other point of reference for the word "evolve". But if you said that monkeys developed via magic, he WOULD argue with you, because magic makes things change instantaneously and things don't develop instantaneously. Quickly, yes, in a single generation, certainly, but never "just like that". I've not really questioned him why brakes are called brakes.

So I've considered far more about evolution than brakes, because I've applied a lot more details to studying braking than evolution. Mind you, my goal right now is to learn to drive a car competently on the road, not to understand braking, and to decide if it's a good method of slowing a car down. If I was to wonder about that, there are several methods: air brakes, putting the engine in reverse, aerodynamics, and all sorts of methods. There is also the question of why we don't make a car turn and stop on a dime, when that was the criteria that Frank Whittle put on building the Spitfire aircraft and he achieved that. But that is something I asked my driving instructor.

btw, thanks so much for clarifying I'm a female. :D
You're welcome. I don't discriminate between females and males. But when I reply to people, I try to make sure that I reply correctly, so had I looked it up. Anyway, your posts seemed stimulating to me, and I have a habit of wanting to understand the mind of people who make me think. I just wanted to clarify things.

RE msg 90 by Is too hot:
You are disobeying the rules of POF when you misquote other posters. If you do it again, I will take it up with with the webmaster.
Please do. But all I have done is to quote you, word for word. Where have I misquoted you?

I certainly disagree with what you've written because you don't know science and have deluded yourself in thinking through topics you obviously don't grasp.
You don't know what I know. But I do, and so do lots of scientists. They seem to think I have an extremely good knowledge of science. There is an old saying: the proof is in the pudding. Please list all the things that I wrote that are the opposite of universally-accepted knowledge of science, not including evolution. That's a massive field. That includes nearly all of biology, physics, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, computing, and medicine, excluding evolutionary biology, which is only a tiny part of biology, relative to biology itself. If you really have any evidence or reason to think I don't know science apart from the fact that I disagree with the notion that evolution has been proved or is certain or does not require abiogenesis, then you will have no problem in providing a huge list of examples.

If you cannot do this, then I have to question if the problem is just that someone who seems to have an encyclopaedic knowledge, and an extremely analytical brain, actually can conclude that evolution is NOT certainly a proven subject that stands on its own without abiogenesis. Maybe that indicates that the premise that evolution has nothing to abiogenesis is not an absolute truth.

I can argue with it plenty but other have and you resist education at every turn. I have no stronger logic that will convert you into one of the sentient.
You cannot turn the already sentient into the sentient. Nor can you turn the well-educated to the educated to your beliefs. I had a very good education, long before I came on POF. Most people never had exposure to the books I was shown from since I was 4. Most people have never had involved discussions about quantum physics and DNA when they were teenagers. Most people don't buy science magazines to read the latest scientific developments. Most people didn't grow up in a neighbourhood where they were surrounded by doctors, teachers, and people with PhDs. Even those who did, rarely talked to them. I did. I loved talking to them. So I can understand that most people might not have had the background to question your knowledge. But I am not most people.

My main beef with you is that you've quoted me out of context and then have tried to tell me I can't write. One has nothing to do with the other but you don't even seem to realize that.
One thing has nothing to do with the other. That is my point. I contend that you used the word adaptation in a way that qriosity claimed was completely incorrect. I further contend that I never misquoted you. If you don't share my opinion on this, then you are disagreeing with my opinion of the matter. That is all that can be said.

So, I don't reply to your idiocies. That's my right and in keeping with POF guidelines.
You have the right to disagree with my opinions. But if you describe them as idiocies, then you have a different opinion of my thoughts than my lecturers and teachers, who all had PhDs, and who were highly regarded in their fields. I cannot say much about your opinion, other than it implies to me that you believe that the majority opinion is the only correct one. I am glad that we are not in a time that Heliocentrism was not the norm. I would not like to have to argue with you about that too.

If you want to keep up your deceitful methods, I'll do all I can to get you banned.
I would like to remind you that in my time on POF, I've reported several posters to the moderators, and had several members banned for serious violation of POF rules. I've been involved in discussions on the rules, and read them many times. Please be aware that one of the rules of POF forums, is not to have "flame wars", or to hijack threads by driving them into discussions that are not pertinent to this subject. You can discuss the topic all you want, and that is defined by the opening post, a discussion of what is part and parcel of the theory of evolution. You can argue that includes magic, or religion, or whatever you believe. But anything else, including claiming that you've been misquoted, is seriously off-topic. It's overlooked by the mods when it happens once or twice, but not when it takes over the thread. If you persist in keeping discussing your treatment so much so that you are hijacking the thread, I will have no option but to report you for breaking forum rules. No doubt this whole thread will get deleted. You might be banned for a few days as well. I would rather both didn't happen. But I will obey the rules, and I will ensure that violations that I am aware of will get reported.

RE msg 93 by rockondon:

MSG 67: Also, it seems that evolutionists all agree that such speciation happens gradually over millions of years.
Couldn't be more wrong. Speciation has been observed numerous times. The typical delusional response to this however is to compare both species, ignore the differences, then convince yourself they are the same species.
I said IT SEEMS. It didn't say it definitely was. However, perhaps you posted that it has been observed numerous times. I would love to believe that, as it would imply that speciation happens all the time, in OUR time. If you can provide evidence that it has been observed numerous times, then I would love to see it. So would you please provide links to at least 10 cases of observed speciation in the last 100 years?


MSG 67: That is why I believe that in order for the Theory of Evolution to properly address The Origin of Species, it must include abiogenesis.
Why abiogenesis? Evolution has no problem at all explaining how life evolved whether it was created by God, aliens, a meteor from another planet, a magic teacup, or whatever.
I could readily understand the workings of your body if it was created by G-d, or aliens, or from a magic teacup. I could readily understand how new cells are fashioned from old cells, once your body is in existence. However, it seems to me that the theory of evolution is based on the idea that you body wasn't just "there", fashioned by G-d, or aliens, but had to come from somewhere, specifically from the reproductive process of another organism. So if I accept evolution, it seems to me that I must accept that living organisms on Earth cannot just come from G-d, or aliens, and so I would require the same of the first organism. If the theory were to state that SOME organisms came from other organisms, and that it COULD be that all organisms other than the first organism came from the reproductive process of other organisms, then I cannot see any conflict.

It seems to me that the reason that anti-evolutionists insist that evolution 'must' include abiogenesis is because abiogenesis does not have the huge mountains of evidence supporting it that evolution does. Connecting one to the other correlates a lack of evidence to something that has tons of it. My sympathies to those who must engage in self-deceit to maintain their belief system.
I have seen more evidence for abiogenesis that I consider reliable than I've seen for the theory of evolution. Moreover, I'm not ANTI-evolution. I'm just a stickler for understanding things rigorously. Have you got me confused with other people you've met?


MSG 70: Theory of Adaptational Evolution
When some people are confronted with scientific truths that are difficult to accept, a common tactic is to move the goalposts by accepting nonsense or poorly defined terms, or less disagreeable versions such as microevolution instead of simply evolution (as though they aren't the same process), or 'adaptation' in place of evolution, or you can ramble on about how scientists are biased/rude/arrogant/don't like bunnies/liars/etc while keeping yourself oblivious to the fact that science is believed because of the evidence - not the authority of scientists.
Yes. Some people do. I've met them. I've had 2-hour discussions with people on why evolution is not in conflict with theism, based on some religious scientists I knew. qriosity made it clear they are not in conflict in msg 89. However, those people still kept refusing to listen to reason.

But don't confuse my requirement for accuracy and reason for mere refusal to accept evolution. I can only think of 3 reasons to refuse to accept evolution: that it is in conflict with theism, or that it is in conflict with the Bible, or that it just doesn't make sense to you. The the first 2 don't apply to me, as my father, who was a scholar, came up with a way to resolve the 2 happily over 28 years ago, and he worked painstakingly on the Bible, especially on Genesis. He would never have said it if evolution couldn't be consistent with Genesis. I've known plenty of religious people since who had no problem marrying evolution with the Bible, including qriosity. That only leaves #3. Are you going to stay I'm being unfairly stubborn if I am not willing to accept something that doesn't make sense to me, but I'm willing to keep my mind open to it anyway?

Incidentally, macroevolution is nothing more than a lot of microevolution. Denying macro is like looking at a puzzle you don't like and refusing to accept, but you do admit the pieces are there. Every great journey is made of little steps.
If macroevolution is nothing more than a lot of microevolution, then I can see no reason not to say that macroreplication is nothing more than a lot of microreplication. Almost all of your body's cell regrow at some point. That's microreplication So why don't amputees regrow limbs in macroreplication?


MSG 70: I KNOW that most people don't want to consider evolution with abiogenesis. But I'm still hoping that logic and reason prevail in science.
Logic and reason huh? ...the irony.
Irony? Sure. I keep saying that evolution could be true, but I need more evidence. I keep saying that the definition of the theory of evolution doesn't include abiogenesis, but that I have great problems in considering and understanding evolution without abiogenesis. The irony is that I'm trying to avoid saying that evolutionists are wrong, and so many posters are attacking my opinion as if I am.



MSG 80: You're expecting one theory to encompass EVERYTHING...why is that?
BECAUSE THAT IS THE PREMISE OF THE THEORY!
Obviously, no theory explains everything. Trying to expand the arena of evolution's explanatory power and then pointing out what it doesn't explain is a straw man argument.
I used to work in support. I had to answer the customer's complaint, investigate it, devise a reasonable theory as to what went wrong, and how to fix it. Then I had to test it, and show that it worked. But that wasn't enough. I had to test it in every way, until I could show my employers that it would work in every possible way, under every possible condition, not only for that customer, but for every customer we ever had, and would have in the future. If there was situation that failed the testing, but that was extremely unlikely, and that would almost never occur to the customer and other customers, and that wouldn't affect the day-to-day running of the customers in any way, and that was completely acceptable to the customers on top, and would not affect the truth of my diagnosis and recommend solution, then it would pass muster. If I couldn't show that, then my entire theory was called into question. I am expected to have that level of validation for a theory in a simple computer program. You expect me to give more latitude to scientific theories?

Check Heliocentrism. Newton's theory had to explain almost every one of the many, many problems with it, and to a high degree of accuracy, checked against the orbit and behaviour of each and every star that could be seen in his time, and that's a lot of stars. The same is expected of Einsteinian Relavitity, and we can detect a lot more stars now, and a lot more orbits. The same exactness is expected of electro-magnetism, and quantum theory. Why should the theory of evolution be given more latitude than other scientific theories?


MSG 80: I believe that the theory of evolution should be treated the same way as any other theory.
No you don't - you wish to raise the bar for proof to impossible heights, not because you don't think it is true, but because you don't want it to be true. It is treated like any other theory - it is scrutinized, it is tested, it is measured, it is in practical use in many fields, and it has withstood the test of time and grows stronger every day. If your objections were scientific instead of religious, then why do you not object to other far less proven scientific theories?
What theories are you referring to? The theory of heliocentrism was around from as early as the 8th Century B.C.E. It wasn't accepted until the 19th century. That is 27 centuries. That's 2700 years! You expect less? I agree that it has been accepted by many scientists as being true. Heliocentrism had its supporters in nearly every century. But that doesn't mean that the theory of evolution has been shown to be unequivocably true. I have seen theories come and go. I don't just accept things just because a scientists says they are true. I look for myself.



MSG 80: Life, however, exists. Period.
Can you prove that? I can prove there is life on Earth. I cannot prove there is life on the moon.
Now there's a nonsense reply if I ever read one.
The statement referred to:
Life, however, exists. Period. Likewise, evolution occurs, and natural selection occurs.
My response:
Can you prove that? I can prove there is life on Earth. I cannot prove there is life on the moon.
So life is not clear cut, and neither is evolution clear cut.
Your response:
Now there's a nonsense reply if I ever read one.
You think that looking at only ONE part of my thread, and quoting only the bits you like makes it sound clever? I'm sure it does with a lot of people. I know a few people who'd buy that. They'd also beat up immigrants if you said similar clever comments to them. But that doesn't mean that it has any basis in truth.


MSG 80: The theory of evolution is based on the idea that the origin of life is NOT the same as the origin of all species but one. So the evidence for this would be the evidence for the theory of evolution. If one is true, the other is also. If one is false, the other is false also.
Falsifying abiogenesis would not falsify evolution. Falsifying evolution would falsify evolution.
If everything comes from one something, and you have no idea where that something comes from, you'd accept that?


MSG 80: So I have far more respect for scientists who research abiogenesis. At least they are trying to push the boundaries of science, rather than just trying to support what most scientists already accept, and don't even manage to convince sceptics like me, who have no reason, religious or otherwise, to not accept evolution
lol, that was entertaining.
Scientists have tried to disprove evolution for 150 years, fame and fortune is the prize to anyone who does it, but the evidence all points unambiguously in support of evolution. They don't support each other because they want to, if anything the opposite is true, they support each other because evolution is right.
Show me all the scientific papers that tried to disprove evolution. There were hundreds of thousands of papers published in the last year alone. Given that number, I'd accept 100 from the last year alone, and a lot less before that, all that started out with the hypothesis that evolution is false, and all with the conclusion that their experiments failed, as evidence that scientists keep trying to disprove it. Can you back up what you are saying, and provide me with links to all those papers? Some? How about 50?


MSG 80: I think about the possibilities that which others avoid. That is what makes me an innovator.
You desperately grab for alternate possibilities when the truth is too difficult to accept. Being an innovator doesn't mean pulling the wool over your eyes.
You really think it's EASY for me to not accept evolution? If I did that:
1) I wouldn't have you or other posters disagreeing with my posts left right and centre.
2) I wouldn't have posters threatening to have me banned (see msg #90 for an example of that).
3) I wouldn't have my threads on evolution deleted.
4) I wouldn't have to write these lengthy replies.
5) I could just accept the current scientific theories on evolution.
6) I wouldn't need to wonder about the latest fossil finds, and how they might match up with an alternative to evolution.
7) I would be able to just conform.
8) I wouldn't need to worry about this.
My life would be made much, much, much, much easier if I just accepted evolution.

I'm not doing it because it's too difficult to accept. It's a lot harder not to. Maybe in your town, most people don't believe in Evolution. I'm not in your country. I'm in the UK. Most people here do believe in evolution. I'm going totally against the majority, and finding lots of problems on POF because of it, and you're saying it's too difficult? You and I really don't live in the same solar system.

RE msg 94 by Is too hot:
Edited to add: I see you made a similarly ignorant post at #76 and you were challenged in #77 to provide evidence for your statements. You failed to do so. Why? Never mind. I know why.
I hope you're not referring to me. If you are, as qriosity referred msg #77 to me, then the sheer length of my post should be obvious as to why I have not replied until now. If you are not referring to me, then I heartily apologise for even suspecting you of accusing me of something in this post.

I dunno. Maybe I should just pretend that I agree with evolution, just to make my life easier, and just take it for granted that science is full of indoctrination and that anyone who disagrees with science is labelled a "heretic". I could even get a job in evolution, solving the Maths side, making all sorts of conclusions which I know to be completely wrong, but the Maths would be right. I would never do a bad job. So the fault would never be mine. I would just know that I would have been paid to be involved in bad science. But I'd make more money than I'm making now. What do you guys and girls think? Agree?
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 68
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/20/2008 4:29:57 PM

What I should have wrote was........All the arguments for this Theory ars based on THEORY not fact

Written. And, even if you had originally written that, you'd still be wrong. The ToE was originally based on taxonomy, a part of biology based on tangible fact. The ToE has since been tested and confirmed by every direct and tangential science available by experimentation on real, tangible systems, not conjecture.


And I'm sorry I don't have time to write pages of actual facts to support my argument on such a hilariously ridiculous thread.

Such a brilliant mind should not waste its time on these idiocies, then. As the supportive evidence for the ToE takes up several shelves at libraries, I can't even begin to list what you need to know. As you are so advanced, please tell us how and why scientists went looking for DNA, a molecule predicted by the ToE.


And I'm sorry I don't have time to write pages of actual facts to support my argument on such a hilariously ridiculous thread.

When regarding you, I'm sure they are horrified as well.
 Rainsands
Joined: 1/9/2007
Msg: 70
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/21/2008 1:43:00 PM
Posted by solomon999 ~ message # 97



And I'm sorry I don't have time to write pages of actual facts to support my argument on such a hilariously ridiculous thread...........

If you have anything to say re this thread, let us hear your scientific facts, and not just more baseless talk and syllogism. Facts please anybody, not hypotheticals.


So you don't have time to back up your argument but you expect those who disagree with you to back up theirs ??? Rather disingenuous of you, yes ?

Perhaps if you spent LESS time engaging in flaming ad hominem attacks against other posters, you would have the time YOU need to support your arguments.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 73
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 4:08:49 PM
RE msg 101 by Peacethx:

According to the current theories about evolution, all humans evolved from the black humans in Africa.
4) Different groups of humans have different levels of intelligence.
5) So if there is any difference of intelligence between groups, black humans would have the least favourable traits that are different in different groups of humans, which would include intelligence.
This is non sequeter. How can anyone, Watson, or anyone...ascribe to this? There is NO basis to this fact. Its been tested again and again. There is absolutely no difference in academic performance in black students when compared with their vanilla counterparts, given equal opportunity to learn. I have no idea where proposition 4 comes from, sounds like the KKK.
I can only assume that you didn't read all of my post. So I'll re-quote the bit you seemed to miss:
Please understand that I am not a racist. I know that ancient African civilisations were very advanced, possibly more advanced in some ways than our own civilisation. My family have African ancestry to some degree, and I have always enjoyed plenty of intelligent discussions with black people, including Africans. So I don't believe that Africans or anyone black is less intelligent than whites.
So it was clear to anyone who read the bit of my post that you quoted, that I never believed there was any difference between the academic performance of black and white students, given an equal opportunity to learn.

My non-sequiteur was that I could not find anything in the theory of evolution that could predict that black students would be equal to white students, because whites evolved from blacks, and hence had more favourable characteristics than blacks, including in the area of intelligence.

My post is very clear that there is black people are not inferior to whites, just that my understanding of evolution is that according to evolution, there would be such an inferiority on a genetic level. Perhaps you can explain to me WHY a more evolved group is not going to be smarter than a less evolved group, especially since we evolved from primates, and AFAIK, we are more intelligent than primates.
 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
Msg: 74
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 5:05:58 PM
Scorpiomover, I just HAD to address this latest post of yours (I'm still behind in responding to 2 of your posts in 2 threads, school calls.....and I want to do those *long* posts, justice, at a later date).

Please, please, I beg of you, before making conclusive statements, and claiming that you are finding that Watson-the-loon's theory to have some validity due to your "understanding" (and I use this term, oh, so, loosely) of evolution is doing you more harm than good....esp. when it comes to this race controversy. Your kind of MISINTERPRETATION of what theory of evolution posits led to Eugenics, of its most horrific example, Nazi Germany.

Wrong!:


because whites evolved from blacks



just that my understanding of evolution is that according to evolution, there would be such an inferiority on a genetic level



WHY a more evolved group is not going to be smarter than a less evolved group



especially since we evolved from primates, and AFAIK, we are more intelligent than primates.



First, WE, HUMANS, ARE PRIMATES. Thus, we didn't evolve FROM primates. Humans are primates. In taxonomy of classification, it goes like this:
Domain, Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species.

PRIMATES is Order, in which humans AND monkeys belong. Our family is homonidae, which includes US, chimps, orangutans & gorillas - i.e., we're the great apes. Then, there's the Genus, which, is Homo (we're the ONLY living creatures in this genus)....and finally there's the species (sapiens)!!! I.e., we're in the order of Primates, belonging to the family of Homonidae, called, Homo sapiens!


Second, whites DID NOT evolve out of blacks!! This is a misconception and shows one's (lack of) understanding of Origin of Modern Humans. There's 2 theories, and they're still debated, so, it is NOT conclusive that it was a single origin out of africa.

The two theories ARE:
1) Out of Africa
2) Multiregional Continuity Model

Here's a link that explains it succintly, both of them, and the evidence for each.
http://www.actionbioscience.org/evolution/johanson.html

Now, if we go with the Out of Africa theory, please note:
WE, as in, ALL OF US, regardless of race, i.e. humans, homo sapiens, evolved out of Homo erectus. Thus, it was a DIFFERENT SPECIES that evolved out of Africa to give the modern man...they were NOT modern day blacks. Blacks, just like whites, red, purple, green, whatever, humans, as a species, had yet to evolve out of the homo erectus , cuz homo sapiens as a species (which we ALL belong to, regardless of race) had yet to evolve, when we talk of the beginning of the Out of Africa theory.

To say that whites evolved OUT of blacks assumes that there's different species. There's NOT. we're ALL one species - homo sapiens.

Now, due to migration, different homo sapiens adapted to their PARTICULAR environment, giving us differences in races. Thus, one didn't stop evolving, while the rest kept evolving more and more to become, finally, the 'holy grail' - white. We were ALL evolving, at the same time, in our particular environments, giving us the differences we see today as different races.
Take home message: modern day blacks ARE NOT THE SAME as the species that was originally there in Africa. They evolved - homo erectus to become homo sapiens, and depending on the environment, led to differential evolution (not one MORE evolved or LESS), but differential evolution.

Thus, this theory on intelligence is NULL AND VOID as there has been no conclusive evidence of why ONE environment (over another) would make for differences in intellegence when they're all evolving at the SAME time, just in different environments.

Btw, what is AFAIK?
 clarence clutterbuck
Joined: 4/13/2008
Msg: 75
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 5:12:30 PM

Btw, what is AFAIK?

It's an acronym, As Far As I Know
 qriosity
Joined: 1/10/2008
Msg: 76
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 5:20:16 PM
^ Thanks, dude!
 rockondon
Joined: 2/21/2007
Msg: 77
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 5:27:23 PM

more evolved
Isn't it amazing that all it takes is two simple words to show that someone doesn't know what evolution is.
Perhaps you can explain to me WHY a more evolved group is not going to be smarter than a less evolved group, especially since we evolved from primates, and AFAIK, we are more intelligent than primates.
We're not 'more' evolved. Every living thing on this planet spent just as much time evolving as we did.

What's beneficial for one species is not necessarily beneficial for another. In a predator-rich environment, intelligence may not be as beneficial for some species as other traits such as strength, speed, etc.

Intelligence can even be a detriment. A human brain uses 25% of the body's energy - compared to the rest of the animal kindgom that's wasteful. By comparison, a chimp's brain only uses up 8% of its body's energy. If a predator is on your trail, you're usually better off with more energy going towards your muscles.

Incidentally, skin tone is determined by melanin. Melanin helps protect people from UV rays. Generally speaking, cultures with ancestors that lived in areas with great exposure to sunlight tend to have dark skin (lots of melanin). Yet another example of evolution in action.
 Is too hot
Joined: 5/19/2008
Msg: 78
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/22/2008 8:10:12 PM
Great post, rockondon! Just wanted to add that the Human Genome Project had to retrace its steps because the genes that determine race were so subtle as to go undetected the first go-around. Even after the suspected genes were found, those scientists are still unsure that they've found the right ones. The best they've been able to do is identify the active genes that give some superficial differences.

It's a coat of paint, people. Everyone's the same. Science has established it.
 rockondon
Joined: 2/21/2007
Msg: 79
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/23/2008 9:59:23 AM
^ well, before you get too high and mighty (yes, that was irony) I just thought I'd mention this:
INTOART: The so-called "theory of evolution" should really be called the "law of evolution" as it has long been an established fact
When a scientific theory is considered a fact its called...a theory. In scientific usage, the term 'theory' implies nothing about uncertainty and it would be ludicrous to consider things like Cell Theory and Germ Theory (and the Theory of Evolution) as anything other than fact. Theories never become laws.

I could bore you with technical definitions of 'law' and 'theory' but in simplest terms, a law is an observable phenomena and a theory explains how and why it happens.
 scorpiomover
Joined: 4/19/2007
Msg: 81
view profile
History
Define the Theory of Evolution
Posted: 7/23/2008 3:21:58 PM
RE msg 112 by qriosity:
Your kind of MISINTERPRETATION of what theory of evolution posits led to Eugenics, of its most horrific example, Nazi Germany.
Let us get something straight. I GREW UP learning about what the Nazis did in World War II. I went to Yad Vashem and went through the whole thing. I went to several Holocaust memorials. I learned all about it. So before you start speaking about what I know, go back and learn about it. Most people don't know much about the Holocaust at all, because the main people who were involved were the Nazis and the Jews. The Nazis don't want to mention it, as they don't want to be charged as war criminals. The Jews don't want to talk about it, because it is an example of anti-semitism, and there are very few peoples on this Earth who have not shown anti-semitic behaviour at some point, so frankly the Jews don't trust you to listen to the truth. The rest of the world wasn't there. Go to Yad Vashem, have a look at the experiments performed by Dr Mengele and his subordinates. Then go and look into history of just after World War II, about the Nazi scientists who were brought over to the States and other countries. Look up the subjects that made use of the Nazi research. Von Braun, the inventor of the V2, which bombed half of London and nearly all of Coventry, was brought over to the US, and his previous work, which caused the death of tens of thousands of British men, women and children, was used as the basis of the American Space Programme. The Nazi research into medicine was also used by the United States and other countries. This research was some of the sickest and most twisted experiments you can imagine. Please, before you go assuming that people have misinterpreted stuff, actually look it up.

Second, you might have the idea that because I didn't bother to answer a post which responded to a comment I made about Eugenics, that somehow that meant I agreed with the response. If I say that I agree with you, then I do. If I don't say anything, that doesn't mean I agree with you. That doesn't even mean that I don't have a response, because I think 10 new ideas every day, whether I like it or not, and I really don't have the time to write down everything I think. Even the posts that I do write, I've generally thought through at least 20 times before I've posted them. Why do you think I have pages of posts? Because I think that much, and that deeply, about everything. Even when I've posted a long post, I've thought that through at least 20 times before I write the first line. Nor am I alone. There are many people who think deeply. They also don't say or write 90% of the stuff they've considered, because they don't have the time either. Get it straight. If you hear or read someone agreeing with you, then they're agreeing with you. Otherwise, you have to take into account their level of analytical ability. If you are assuming that people don't have that level of analytical ability, then you might not know anyone who does think that deeply. I do. At least half the people I know who went to Yeshiva could have done their whole degree in one year, and the only reason they didn't was that UK law requires a degree to be completed in not less than 3 years. So please, stop making assumptions about people. If you ASSUME, you only make an ASS out of U and ME.

First, WE, HUMANS, ARE PRIMATES. Thus, we didn't evolve FROM primates. Humans are primates. In taxonomy of classification, it goes like this:
Domain, Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species.

PRIMATES is Order, in which humans AND monkeys belong. Our family is homonidae, which includes US, chimps, orangutans & gorillas - i.e., we're the great apes. Then, there's the Genus, which, is Homo (we're the ONLY living creatures in this genus)....and finally there's the species (sapiens)!!! I.e., we're in the order of Primates, belonging to the family of Homonidae, called, Homo sapiens!
First, I'd like you to consider the origin of the word special:
special Look up special at Dictionary.com
c.1225, "better than ordinary," from O.Fr. especial, from L. specialis "individual, particular," from species "appearance, kind, sort" (see species). Meaning "marked off from others by some distinguishing quality" is recorded from 1303. In M.E., also as a noun, meaning "sweetheart, lover." Meaning "special train" is attested from 1866. Special effects first attested 1951. Special interests in U.S. political sense is from 1910. Special pleading first recorded 1684.
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=special

As you can see, special is from species. Species means kind or sort, according to the same source. To be special, means that you have become a kind within a kind. Specialisation is from the same basis, to become a kind within a kind. Speciation is the same idea, to become more specialised. So when you talk about species evolving, you are talking about specialisation. To state that humans evolved from primates, is to state that humans are a species, a specialisation, a special group, which have speciated, specialised, from another group. It doesn't matter whether you specialise within a group to become a more specialised version of that group, such as humans evolving from primates, or whether you specialise within a group to become a specialised version of another group, such as saying that whales evolved from land-borne creatures. The point is the same: the new species, the new special group, specialised. So to say that humans evolved from primates, is true, because humans are a specialisation, a special case, of primates in general.

Second, we are NOT ON AN SITE FOR EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGISTS. WE ARE ON POF! The language of POF is English, NOT EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY! I try and avoid complex terms, because most people wouldn't be familiar with the jargon I use, and this site is devoted to EVERYONE! If you want to discuss a site using terms that are specific to evolutionary biology, then go and join the forums for a site with evolutionary biology. But if you intend to stay on this site, then please respect the fact that you have to accommodate the fact that most people are just not going to understand a word you say. This isn't a lab. Don't treat it like one.

Third, there was never any indication that I was using the terms used in Linnaean Taxonomy. In fact, the reverse is true. If I had been using Linnaean Taxonomy, then I would have said "Homo Sapiens". I didn't I said HUMANS. That is English, and a general term. When I said Primates, I was therefore also talking about English. If I meant the Order of Primates according to Linnaean Taxonomy, order of primates. But I didn't. I used the term primates, as in orangutans, chimpanzees, spider monkeys, gorillas, and all the nice similar furry creatures that we know and love. If you want to use Linnaean Taxonomy, so be it, but then I would expect you to quote the Domain, Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus and Species of every time you mention a species, and every time you mention that species, because you are requiring that level of detail and clarity. By the way, why didn't you have a problem with me saying "humans"?

Second, whites DID NOT evolve out of blacks!! This is a misconception and shows one's (lack of) understanding of Origin of Modern Humans. There's 2 theories, and they're still debated, so, it is NOT conclusive that it was a single origin out of africa.

The two theories ARE:
1) Out of Africa
2) Multiregional Continuity Model

Here's a link that explains it succintly, both of them, and the evidence for each.
http://www.actionbioscience.org/evolution/johanson.html
I read that page. Here's the conclusion:
Conclusion

For the moment, the majority of anatomical, archaeological and genetic evidence gives credence to the view that fully modern humans are a relatively recent evolutionary phenomenon. The current best explanation for the beginning of modern humans is the Out of Africa Model that postulates a single, African origin for Homo sapiens. The major neurological and cultural innovations that characterized the appearance of fully modern humans has proven to be remarkably successful, culminating in our dominance of the planet at the expense of all earlier hominid populations.
Now, why on Earth would we even discuss the Multiregional Continuity Model, if the data points towards the Out of Africa model? After all, there are 2 main theories of the solar system:
1) The Heliocentric Model
2) The Ptolemaic Model
Both models are very good explanations of what we observe in the solar system and in the stars. The Heliocentric model wins out, as it is the best explanation according to the data. Nevertheless, the Heliocentric model is the accepted view, just like the Out of Africa model. Would you expect us to begin with a discussion of gravity and relativity by considering the Ptolemaic model. So why would you expect Watson to make public statements based on the Multiregional Continuity Model? Further, why would you NEED any statement to be true for both? Do you expect that we should reject Newton's work and Einstein's work, because they cannot work according to the Ptolemaic model?

Now, if we go with the Out of Africa theory, please note:
WE, as in, ALL OF US, regardless of race, i.e. humans, homo sapiens, evolved out of Homo erectus. Thus, it was a DIFFERENT SPECIES that evolved out of Africa to give the modern man...they were NOT modern day blacks. Blacks, just like whites, red, purple, green, whatever, humans, as a species, had yet to evolve out of the homo erectus , cuz homo sapiens as a species (which we ALL belong to, regardless of race) had yet to evolve, when we talk of the beginning of the Out of Africa theory.
I will quote from the page you cited yet again:
Africans display higher genetic variation than other populations, supporting the idea that they were the first modern humans.
and:
In contrast, the Out of Africa Model asserts that modern humans evolved relatively recently in Africa, migrated into Eurasia and replaced all populations which had descended from Homo erectus. Critical to this model are the following tenets:
Out of Africa theory: homo sapiens arose in Africa and migrated to other parts of the world to replace other hominid species, including homo erectus.
It is pretty clear from the page you quoted that the Out of Africa model posits that Homo Sapiens arose in Africa, and then migrated from there. Considering the earlier quote from that page, that quite clearly states that Africans were the first modern humans, then Caucasians are descended from Africans. According to so many evolutionists on POF, evolution does happen in stages, and that is the reason we find transitional fossils. So you do get evolutionary genetic changes within a species. So it is entirely possible that any group of humans could have a group that has an evolutionary genetic change. As you quoted earlier, such a change may be an adaptation (using the word according to your usage), that could have resulted as a greater adaptation to the environment. So it is ideas like the very page you cited, and ideas like the ones posted by the evolutionists on POF, that have led me to the conclusion that Watson was being reasonable about evolution.

To say that whites evolved OUT of blacks assumes that there's different species. There's NOT. we're ALL one species - homo sapiens.
No, it doesn't. To say that "whites evolved OUT of blacks assumes that there's different species", assumes that if one group evolves from another, that they must be different species, which assumes that evolution must equal speciation. So one could not have any evolutionary changes that still did not mean that one had become a fully new species. Just for starters, considering that some definitions of the difference between 2 species is that they cannot even mate together, then if one animal had evolved an evolutionary advantage, then he/she could no longer mate with his/her own species, and unless some other animal of his species developed the same trait, then he/she would have no-one to mate with, and would die without ever being able to reproduce and carry on the genetic trait. According to that, all new evolutionary traits would die out in the same generation they came about and would never be passed on. I cannot state how much such a claim would cause problems for any understanding of evolution that I could possibly find. Frankly, I'm amazed you could state such a thing.

Now, due to migration, different homo sapiens adapted to their PARTICULAR environment, giving us differences in races. Thus, one didn't stop evolving, while the rest kept evolving more and more to become, finally, the 'holy grail' - white. We were ALL evolving, at the same time, in our particular environments, giving us the differences we see today as different races.
Sorry, but that isn't true. If you are evolving then you are actively involved in the process of evolution, and you are actively developing a new evolutionary trait, either in yourself or your progeny, or you are spreading such a trait. Either way, you are actively effecting evolution. If you have the same basic genetic structure as the rest of homo sapiens, and so do your kids, then you aren't spreading anything. You can say that technically you are evolving, because you have a dissimilar genetic code to each of your parents, and in that way, you are evolving, but you aren't really evolving. That is like saying that you've completed an exam because you signed your name. You haven't really done an exam unless you've answered the questions. You cannot be considered to evolve unless you are doing something. So unless you have a special gene that is favourable and most humans don't have it, and you are having lots of kids, so that you spread that gene within homo sapiens, then you aren't evolving. You're standing still. You're staying the same as everyone else. That is most people. Most people don't report to have a special talent that is both favourable and genetic in origin. You're not evolving. Most people aren't evolving. WE are NOT all evolving.

Second, you quoted me before as saying that adaptation is a result of evolution. So there is no way that those people adapted without evolving.

Third, there are far more differences than just occur in the races that are described within homo sapiens, as there are at most 3 races, or possibly only 1, as quoted to me by Frog_O_Eyes.

Take home message: modern day blacks ARE NOT THE SAME as the species that was originally there in Africa. They evolved - homo erectus to become homo sapiens, and depending on the environment, led to differential evolution (not one MORE evolved or LESS), but differential evolution.
I've already quoted the page you cited, which makes clear that the data points towards the Out Of Africa model. However, the page states that Africans have a much higher level of genetic variations and that is part of the data that points towards the Out Of Africa model being the most likely. So if we were all the same, all evolving, then we'd all see the same level of genetic variation. Further, the fact that evolutionary biologists regard a higher level of genetic variation in a group of a species as an indication that the group evolved earlier, that suggests that evolutionary theory supports the idea that as species evolve, they first form multiple genetic variations, which then become filtered into one variation, which represents the next step in the evolutionary ladder, and the multiple genetic variations are transitional forms, of which only one gets to become the ancestor of the new species. But that would mean that the Africans are really various transitional forms, and the later groups are the finished product, at least at that point of evolution. Again, you are trying to argue in a way that just doesn't support the data you are citing.

Thus, this theory on intelligence is NULL AND VOID as there has been no conclusive evidence of why ONE environment (over another) would make for differences in intellegence when they're all evolving at the SAME time, just in different environments.
Oh, come on. Rain? Try living without a house. Try it. You'll hate your life. You'll get sick every time it rains. You'll need to start finding shelter. But so do animals. Caves are very dangerous, because wild animals tend to use them to escape the rain too. So you are left with 4 options:
1) Live in the outside, get sick and die out.
2) Live in caves, get killed by wild animals and die out.
3) Live in caves, and learn how to defend yourself against wild animals while you are trapped, with no way out.
4) Live outside, and learn how to build houses.
#1 and #2 mean death. So survival would mean that favourable characteristics would result, that would develop #3 or #4. Both require intelligence.

Living in Africa is nice and sunny. You can sleep outside. I know. I stayed with a Moroccan who would regularly sleep out, with nothing more than a rolled-up sack. If it gets rainy, you get wet. But then the sun comes out and in 20 minutes, you're dry as a bone. So rain isn't much of a problem.

Plus, in places like Africa, you can see animals from far off. In wet climates, you are surrounded by jungle. You can be right next to a wild animal, and you wouldn't see him. So you need your brains to figure out how to read animal tracks, how to cure poisons, how to prepare weapons and methods of defence.

These are only SOME of the things that you need to do in a wet climate where jungles are common. So intelligence is a VERY good thing to have in such climates.

Now, where are these climates to be found? Well, according to geologists and archaeologists, Britain was such a jungle. 2000 years ago, it was nearly all jungle, very thick forest. Even 1000 years ago, a substantial amount of it was still that way. Britain used to have wolves, bears and many wild animals. At one stage, it has been reported that even elephants and lions used to roam Britain. Apparently, the rest of Europe was the same. The only thing that changed Europe was the fact that once humans started living there, they started cutting down the forest, for firewood, for turning the land into something suitable for farming, and for making the are safer, by removing the thick forest, making it easier to see what was happening, and to make it much easier to kill the wild animals and/or drive them away.

So there was a very good reason for developing intelligence in Europe.

Scorpiomover, I just HAD to address this latest post of yours (I'm still behind in responding to 2 of your posts in 2 threads, school calls.....and I want to do those *long* posts, justice, at a later date).
I'm getting tired of responding to these threads, because I'm not really learning much. I'm asking questions, and you are trying to say that my questions are not really valid questions in the first place. I keep looking up the evidence, and the evidence points to validate my question. It feels like you're just trying to evade answering the question. I got so fed up with this response, that I thought of an answer for myself, because I don't think I'll get one out of you. Not that you couldn't answer it, because I did in less than 5 minutes. But the point is that you are the one saying how right evolution is, and you cannot answer my questions. All you can say is that the question isn't valid in the first place, and I wouldn't be asking it if I hadn't considered that it might be false. I keep wanting to speak to someone who has thought out what I'm thinking and come to answers. Instead I'm dealing with people who are just side-stepping the issue entirely. I left a lot of people behind who used to do that, because after a while, you realise that you are never going to be able to have a real conversation with them. Unless you can step up to the plate, ask your teacher, or better still, your teacher's teacher, to discuss the subject. I'm used to studying with my teachers as colleagues. Maybe I can get some answers there.

RE msg 115 by rockondon:
Isn't it amazing that all it takes is two simple words to show that someone doesn't know what evolution is.
If you understood that, you'd explain it, rather than just stating it as though it is obvious to everyone, without ever being clear as to why it is so. More likely, it is correct to say that something is more evolved, and you don't understand why in the first place.

For something to be evolved, that means its ancestors would have gone through several evolutionary steps. Each step is a part of the process of evolution. So something that has gone through 100 steps, is less evolved than something that has gone through 1000 steps. It's not rocket science. Why do you write as though it is?

We're not 'more' evolved. Every living thing on this planet spent just as much time evolving as we did.
The theory of evolution doesn't mean that you've lived for x amount of time on this planet. It deals in change. An amoeba that hasn't had a single evolutionary change in the last 100 million years hasn't been evolving all that time. What is so hard to understand about that?

Intelligence can even be a detriment. A human brain uses 25% of the body's energy - compared to the rest of the animal kindgom that's wasteful. By comparison, a chimp's brain only uses up 8% of its body's energy. If a predator is on your trail, you're usually better off with more energy going towards your muscles.
Are you sure you've ever been chased? If you are being chased by a predator, and you and the predator are both putting everything into just running, then the species which runs faster is always going to win. If you run faster, the you're nearly always going to escape, and the predator will very rarely get any food and will die out. If the predator runs faster, the you're nearly always going to be caught, and your species will be eaten to extinction. The thing that guarantees your survival IS using your intelligence. That's why we are so much more profilic than gorillas, spider monkeys, orangutans and so many other species. We use our intelligence. We cannot outrun most animals, because we don't NEED to. The minute we figured out that if we took a rock, bashed 2 ends of a thick plant like bamboo with it, until we got a stick, then took some vine and tied the rock to one end, and jabbed it right into the throat of a wild animal, we could kill them. Once we realised that if 10 of us did it all at once, we could easily take down a wild animal, we could take down most animals. We could take down animals as big as mammoths. We could take down animals as dangerous as sabre-tooth tigers. With weapons and teamwork, we didn't NEED to run. We could take down predators with far more success than running ever gave us to escape. So running became not that important. We just needed to run quickly enough to react, to pin the animal down, and to stab it.

For MOST species, intelligence is an extreme advantage, simply because intelligence makes you use what you've got, in terms of resources, terrain and weather, so much more effectively.

Incidentally, skin tone is determined by melanin. Melanin helps protect people from UV rays. Generally speaking, cultures with ancestors that lived in areas with great exposure to sunlight tend to have dark skin (lots of melanin).
Tell me something new. I knew about melanin at age 10. Incidentally, did you know that grey hair is really transparent? People whose hair has grown old have stopped producing melanin in their hair, and there is nothing to colour the hair, and the hair is transparent. Air gets caught in your hair which gets coloured by light to look white, or silver, or grey.
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