Should evolution be taught in high sc...

Should evolution be taught in high school?

There are 180279 comments on the www.scientificblogging.com story from Feb 24, 2008, titled Should evolution be taught in high school?. In it, www.scientificblogging.com reports that:

Microbiologist Carl Woese is well known as an iconoclast. At 79 years of age, Woese is still shaking things up. Most recently, he stated in an interview with Wired that...

"My feeling is that evolution shouldn't be taught at the lower grades. You don't teach quantum mechanics in the grade schools. One has to be quite educated to work with these concepts; what they pass on as evolution in high schools is nothing but repetitious tripe that teachers don't understand."

Join the discussion below, or Read more at www.scientificblogging.com.

“I am Sisyphus”

Since: Nov 07

Location hidden

#157110 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
Obviously, your neo-darwinistic ideology is more important than physics.

EVERYONE here understands physics better than you do. Even KAB has mocked you and he is a member of a religious cult.

At this point you are only good for comic relief.

So please continue. I always can use a good laugh.
Mugwump

Sunderland, UK

#157111 Oct 23, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
EVERYONE here understands physics better than you do. Even KAB has mocked you and he is a member of a religious cult.
At this point you are only good for comic relief.
So please continue. I always can use a good laugh.
Whilst being a self-proclaimed dunce at physics, and hence not commenting on the SLoT discussions (see what I am doing there, though learnt a lot which is always good)

it does beg an interesting question.

If the SLoT argument is a complete slam dunk against evolution / abiogenisis .... How come only a minority of physicists agree (and only the ones that have a fundy bias)?

Did ask UC this and best he could come up with was a world-wide conspiracy by the scientific community to support their worldview.

Not really convincing is it.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157112 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
Wrong. It is clear in the texts that you are wrong. We have seen many references from a variety of sources that say you are wrong. It is already entropy after taking the log of the microstates. Logically. THINK. USE YOUR BRAIN. The k is just a conversion factor.
k - a scalar with units of energy / temperature, is what converts number of available microstates into entropy.

Now use YOUR brain, to consider a simple question. If units of dimension are superfluous to entropy, then why did Boltzmann feel the necessity to define k in terms of a scalar with the dimensions of energy / temperature? Why didn't he just arbitrarily use the dimensions of time / distance or mass x acceleration? Why did he include the dimensions at all?

Was he just stupid, or are you missing something fundamental here?

Now, if you arbitrarily set k's scalar to "1", all it means is that you are not using the SI units of energy and temperature. That is NOT the same thing as saying energy / temperature no longer matters.

One could easily set the unit of energy or the unit of temperature to a scale where k = 1. Its just that we would be unlikely to find such unwieldy units of energy and temperature very useful. It would be a bit like measuring the length of a microbe as a proportion of a light-year. We can do it, but its not much use.

However if we want to do some mathematical work where conversion into SI units does not matter. But its still understood that the dimensional aspect is intrinsic to entropy.

Its still energy / temperature, whatever the units and whatever the scalar.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157113 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
We have seen many references from a variety of sources that say you are wrong.
No, Urb. Not one.

Even the sources you quoted backed up our position. Kahn even mocked the use of the "tidy room" analogy. Yes, even Kahn said a tidy room has the same entropy as a messy one. So long as its the same stuff at the same temperature, of course. And if you had actually understood that lecture, you would know WHY Kahn dismissed the "tidy room" example.

I wonder, do you still believe that DNA at room temperature is lower entropy than a deep frozen block of ice? Or have you learned a little in spite of yourself?

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157114 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
Obviously, your neo-darwinistic ideology is more important than physics.
No, obviously we can add physics to the list of sciences that you hate, along with biology, geology, astronomy, chemistry, archeology, cosmology...

You "love science" in general but seem to hate all the sciences in particular. Kinda reminds me of those lofty socialist types who "love humanity" but seem to hate people. And what you would do to science given the chance is not all that different from what Stalin and Mao did to people, either.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157115 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
Statistical entropy shows very clearly that the increasing entropy would prevent any possible vertical/forward progress evolution or the creation of any ordered information. It also clearly shows that abiogenesis and all the information needed for a simple cell could not just happen with entropy in control. The opposite is happening and this is exactly what we observe everywhere in the universe. It is only through intelligent intervention and volition can order be made from disorder. There are no exceptions to that. You lose big time.
Localised entropy reduction is possible. Even Creager did not rule that out. He did make the claim that its connected to "ordered application of energy" and failed in that effort for reasons spelled out at length. Physicists know its connected to the processing and dissipation of energy by the system. And already knew that a long time ago.

Any attempt to explain this to you has been met with the curious accusation that we are lying. When Wiki contradicted you, you claimed it really agreed but was "badly worded". When Kahn said a tidy room has the same entropy as a messy one, you completely overlooked it.

When I ask you to simply explain how adding energy can reduce the available number of microstates for a particle, you refuse to focus on that question which is pivotal to your position. I will ask it again.

As with every subject we have ever discussed, you merely start screaming that everyone is a liar when you cannot deal with the truth. So answer the question, or man up for once in your life.

You got this wrong, at every step of the way.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157116 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
Chimney and Poly, basically, you're both liars and idiots. I had to pin you down and then when you finally realized you were wrong, you dishonestly change your tune and pretend you knew all along. There is no point in me discussing this with you two as you both demonstrated repeatedly that you are only interested in making me look bad and saving your ideology and have absolutely no interest in having an honest discussion.
I have asked you a question that is pivotal to your case and you cannot answer it.

"How can the application of energy to a particle reduce its number of available microstates?"

You still cannot give me an answer to support your case.

Hence, your silly accusation that your opponents are lying. Its mere evasion, a desperate effort to avoid the truth.

“e pluribus unum”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

primus inter pares

#157117 Oct 23, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
I have asked you a question that is pivotal to your case and you cannot answer it.
"How can the application of energy to a particle reduce its number of available microstates?"
You still cannot give me an answer to support your case.
Hence, your silly accusation that your opponents are lying. Its mere evasion, a desperate effort to avoid the truth.
There is one compound that can do this, at or near the Quantum critical point. But that's cheating it a bit I think.

KAB

Wilson, NC

#157118 Oct 23, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
I have asked you a question that is pivotal to your case and you cannot answer it.
"How can the application of energy to a particle reduce its number of available microstates?"
You still cannot give me an answer to support your case.
Hence, your silly accusation that your opponents are lying. Its mere evasion, a desperate effort to avoid the truth.
I've suspected that being routinely called a liar was not to be taken seriously, and actually reflects a different reality. Thanks for the insight.

“Don't get me started”

Level 1

Since: Jul 09

Minneapolis

#157119 Oct 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
I understand your point, but I also like to be correct for the lurkers. I have few notions of convincing Urb of his mistakes, but I might be able to educate someone else that is reading.
Thanks. I do consider myself marginally educated from following this discussion.

“Don't get me started”

Level 1

Since: Jul 09

Minneapolis

#157120 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
That is not what I meant and you know that. What we are measuring is the *result* of the bomb. It is post-explosion. The count of the microstates is taken at an instant of time. You still don't understand the concept. You must be thinking we are counting microstates before, during, and after the bomb - but that is not right. This could be the source of all the trouble you are having understanding this.
The source of all the trouble is in the example of comparing the relatively instant result of the bomb to nearly four billion years of evolution. If you drew out the results of the bomb on the same time scale it would force you to look at a more *open* system, with truely micro results of the bomb, rather than the macro pieces of debris you present. If that time scale were drawn out you could see the subsystems of increased order and complexity developing.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157121 Oct 23, 2013
Urban Cowboy wrote:
<quoted text>
What we are measuring is the *result* of the bomb. It is post-explosion. The count of the microstates is taken at an instant of time.
Here is one problem. The result of the bomb is in any particular case 1 macrostate.

Lets agree that a collection of material has far more ways to be a debris field than to be a house, macroscopically. At an extreme, we could run all the material on the site through a crude crusher.

Yet assuming the same uniform temperature and materials for both, thermodynamically the house and the pile of dust have "almost" the same entropy.(The crusher might have broken some of the chemical bonds that constrained some of the molecular motion.)

Order at the higher level of physical structure of beams and walls is ignored thermodynamically, even in Boltzmann's version of statistical entropy, for a good reason. Its NOT the number of possible macro-states that matter! There is only ONE macrostate at ONE bomb site, or ONE dust pile - the ONE that happened. And the number of available microstates of all the particles that make up that particular bomb site are the same as the number of available microstates for the particles of any identical materials at a particular temperature.

1 mole of glucose has a standard entropy of 209.2 kJ/mol at 298K temperature. It does not matter whether its in a block together or scattered all over the kitchen floor, or carefully sequestered in your muscles. Not thermodynamically, anyway.

But, you say, we are interested in "non-thermodynamic" measures of entropy! You hammer something precisely and the result is more macroscopically ordered than if you are shoddy and there are more ways to do a shoddy job than a good one.

But Creager and you are mixing two different things, trying to apply the equations for statistical entropy at the molecular level to "ordered hammering". Statistics DO apply, but not in the way you think.

You and Creager merely assume that the only way to do a precise hammer blow is to have an intelligent agent directing it.

Evolution is proposing that you could simply make random changes to the way you hammer in a thousand different experimental ways that are slight variations, and keep throwing out the bad results while basing the next generation of hammer blows on minor changes to the most successful previous ones. "Learning" by pure trial and error. The statistical bias to a worse result is resolved by brutal natural selection of only the best ones, generation after generation.

Its just another method of creating localised order. Less efficient and slower than Design but more resilient and flexible. And there is no shortage of energy available to accomplish it.

Brutal, but logical and workable. And it still does not violate SLoT. Funnily enough, Creagers notion that total entropy CAN be reduced by the "ordered application of energy" DOES violate SLoT.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#157122 Oct 24, 2013
If a firecracker inside a sealed vacuum is lit. When it explodes is the entropy greater or less? Being sealed in a complete vacuum has what effects on the microstates?

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157123 Oct 24, 2013
replaytime wrote:
If a firecracker inside a sealed vacuum is lit. When it explodes is the entropy greater or less? Being sealed in a complete vacuum has what effects on the microstates?
In any physical process total entropy will always increase or at best in an unreachable ideal case, will remain the same. That is as good as it gets.

Note that this is the second law and it applies whether you are blowing up a cracker, or bombing a house, or building one. In every case, total entropy has increased even if local entropy in part of the system is reduced. Local entropy falling is not a problem. Even a cup of coffee sitting at your desk is shedding entropy- but at the cost of raising entropy by more in its immediate surrounds as it cools.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#157124 Oct 24, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
In any physical process total entropy will always increase or at best in an unreachable ideal case, will remain the same. That is as good as it gets.
Note that this is the second law and it applies whether you are blowing up a cracker, or bombing a house, or building one. In every case, total entropy has increased even if local entropy in part of the system is reduced. Local entropy falling is not a problem. Even a cup of coffee sitting at your desk is shedding entropy- but at the cost of raising entropy by more in its immediate surrounds as it cools.
That all is correct. But it does not answer my question. Think, use logic and read my question again.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#157125 Oct 24, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
In any physical process total entropy will always increase or at best in an unreachable ideal case, will remain the same. That is as good as it gets.
Note that this is the second law and it applies whether you are blowing up a cracker, or bombing a house, or building one. In every case, total entropy has increased even if local entropy in part of the system is reduced. Local entropy falling is not a problem. Even a cup of coffee sitting at your desk is shedding entropy- but at the cost of raising entropy by more in its immediate surrounds as it cools.
Chimney it is a trick question. I thought Urb might jump on it.

The answer is nothing will change due to one reason.

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157126 Oct 24, 2013
replaytime wrote:
<quoted text>
Chimney it is a trick question. I thought Urb might jump on it.
The answer is nothing will change due to one reason.
You were going to say the cracker wont light because it needs oxygen right?

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#157127 Oct 24, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
You were going to say the cracker wont light because it needs oxygen right?
Correct

Level 6

Since: Mar 12

Location hidden

#157128 Oct 24, 2013
replaytime wrote:
<quoted text>
Correct
Ahh but gunpowder does not need an external oxygen supply to work.

You can shoot aliens in space. Just remember that in case it ever comes in handy.
Level 6

Since: Aug 07

Elkview, WV

#157129 Oct 24, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
Here is one problem. The result of the bomb is in any particular case 1 macrostate.
Lets agree that a collection of material has far more ways to be a debris field than to be a house, macroscopically. At an extreme, we could run all the material on the site through a crude crusher.
Yet assuming the same uniform temperature and materials for both, thermodynamically the house and the pile of dust have "almost" the same entropy.
FYI Chimney, I don't usually waste my time beyond your first false statement or bogus analogy. You are still thinking with your emotions and not logic. You are just doing everything you can to make this into something it is not. Good luck with that.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

Evolution Debate Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
News "Science vs. Religion: What Scientists Really T... (Jan '12) 12 min Ragmar 57,839
News Nonsense of a high order: The confused world of... 21 min Hedonist Heretic 1,760
News Atheism, for Good Reason, Fears Questions (Jun '09) 23 min Subduction Zone 27,242
News It's the Darwin crowd that lacks the facts in e... (Mar '09) 1 hr Genesis Enigma 159,205
News Intelligent Design Education Day 13 hr replaytime 2
News Evolution vs. Creation (Jul '11) 14 hr replaytime 219,597
News Betsy DeVos' Code Words for Creationism Offshoo... Feb 16 scientia potentia... 1
More from around the web