Should evolution be taught in high sc...

Should evolution be taught in high school?

There are 180392 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.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160270 Dec 23, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
Then again , bacteria may have the strongest will of all to survive.
What is an endospore?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Endospore
http://www.microbeworld.org/types-of-microbes...
Why do you think this implies a 'will' to survive instead of a tendency to change so as to survive? The latter is easily selected by natural selection; the first is not.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160271 Dec 23, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
I can only think of the full title of Darwin's book.
The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection: The Preservation of Favored Races in the Struggle for Life.
The Struggle for Life. Does this sound like
"there is no intention or drive for survival necessary."?
I think there is, and this is even at the smallest levels.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v =S3OJOGxy21kXX
No, there is no 'plan' or 'intention'. Instead, there is the randomness of mutation and the regularity of selection. There is no selection of which mutations will occur, only selection of those mutations that have already occurred. There is no plan for how to change in the future, only survival and reproduction in the present.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160272 Dec 23, 2013
Chimney1 wrote:
<quoted text>
Yes, you are right. We are not using the same yardstick. Your article about various forms of communication even in simple creatures and plants was interesting. Perhaps you could maintain that there are degrees of consciousness and these examples represent the first rung of a ladder.
But I think there is something fundamentally different in character in human consciousness that cannot simply be explained by the accumulation of more and more complex feedback systems like the ones described in your article. I can imagine a machine that mimics human behavior so well we cannot distinguish it from human, yet there being no "being inside" that would actually be conscious in the way I am and I presume you are. None of this has anything to do with an immaterial soul, I just don't think the current models explain the character of our consciousness, thats all.
Interesting. I find the concept of a philosophical zombie to be problematic, at least. I do NOT think it possible we could build a machine that acts exactly the same way a human does without an internal life. In order to 'mimic' past a certain level, I think there has to be the reality. If the machine is going to be able to show an appreciation for music, there has to actually be that appreciation for music. If it is going to be able to talk consistently about internal states, there have to *be* internal states. Essentially, if there is the complexity to show such behaviors, the reality of consciousness follows along.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160273 Dec 23, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
Living organisms consist of a very different type matter than the inanimate and emit bio-photons as well as exhibit communication on a molecular and cellular level.
No, living things are NOT made of a different type of matter than non-living things. The atoms are identical between living and non-living things. The photons are not different. The small molecules are the same. The *only* difference is that life has a high degree of polymerization with a large variety in the particulars of the polymerization. The same laws of physics and chemistry still apply.

Your first article is *speculation* about the emission of photons and sound for communication. I rather think it unlikely that thi sis the reality at the bacterial level. Molecules exchanged, yes, but I would like to see evidence of sound or light communication.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160274 Dec 23, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
Gee IDK what would communication and consciousness be doing together?
Here's a clue.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Communication
You are shifting the definition of communication when you go from bacterial exchanges to this article. All communication at the bacterial level consists of is an exchange of chemical signals that initiate a cascade of other chemical reactions, which changes behavior. Why you think that is consciousness is beyond me.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160278 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
I think your mistake is thinking that communication requires consciousness. In these situations, there is a chemical diffustion and then a reaction to that chemical. This communication requires no planning, no consciousness, and nothing thinking about the consequences. Those organisms that didn't have these responses simply didn't survive as well as those that did.
I agree that there is 'communiation' in the sense that there is a chemical signal that affects the behavior of the recipient. But that does not imply an intention, a plan, or a consciousness of the signal or response. Instead, this is typically a fairly simple chemical response and not a complicated 'planning' of a rtesponse.
No mistake, life found a way I think it is conscious and has intention from it's inception. You can think otherwise , but I can't see how.
It's like a door was opened with the creation of the biosphere and when it became alive, closing that door is death to everything alive within it. It's not religious , it's just something that does not want to cease. It provides protections to see that it doesn't.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

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arte et marte

#160279 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
Why do you think this implies a 'will' to survive instead of a tendency to change so as to survive? The latter is easily selected by natural selection; the first is not.

Either way it is to the same end, and I have the same meaning.
Maybe not the best descriptions.
But the living things do have this will, and will fight for it.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160280 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
No, there is no 'plan' or 'intention'. Instead, there is the randomness of mutation and the regularity of selection. There is no selection of which mutations will occur, only selection of those mutations that have already occurred. There is no plan for how to change in the future, only survival and reproduction in the present.
I never said it did, however we don't really know that it doesn't, only think that it couldn't.
But what I really think that life does in reality is diversify into as many variables as it can.
So that it throws everything possible at survival , we see some do ,and some do not.
But it also seems to keep wild cards hidden, and those are the reasons life is still on Earth.
But we can't know yet whether life can be inventive enough to anticipate , though it maybe so.
I suspect it is in fact capable of some anticipation of possible disaster, and that's why the HOX genes are there, memory serves the living.. This is a fact.old school usually will solve a new problem. Though there is an exception to everything. Nature and life are still smarter than us, though we have no idea how it can be.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

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Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#160281 Dec 23, 2013
appleboy wrote:
<quoted text>
I think it is closer to say that the first living things had a slight instability on a basic level that caused them to have variable reproductive results. This trend continued throughout all life forms. So, a plant that is drawn toward the sun might survive to reproduce others with the same response, and a plant from the same parent that is not drawn toward the sun would have less of a chance to survive long enough to survive.
And it would also be closer to say that some cells are duplicated in reproduction, and once duplicated are subject to eventual mutation. Some of these duplicated and mutated cells are helpful, and others are harmful.
In either case, there is no intention or drive for survival necessary.
You don't think all living things have the drive/will to survive? Try choking a cat, a dog, a rabbit, etc etc. Everything that is trying to be killed or being killed fights back, even bacteria. That fight is the drive/will for survival. If living things had no drive/will to live they would just lay there and die. That drive/will comes from consciousness of knowing that when something is trying to kill you, that is not normal so in response fight for survival is what you get.

“Think&Care”

Since: Oct 07

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#160282 Dec 23, 2013
Aura Mytha wrote:
<quoted text>
Either way it is to the same end, and I have the same meaning.
Maybe not the best descriptions.
But the living things do have this will, and will fight for it.
And that then means it is not a 'conscious' thing: it is an automatic thing.

So, once again, we come down to a matter of definitions. Do bacteria have a sense of self? I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Do plants have a sense of self? Again, I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Does it 'feel like' anything to be a plant? Again, I strongly doubt it. There is no 'consciousness' there.

But there *is* such consciousness for, say a cat or a dog. There *is* such for a bird. I am not so convinced about planaria, for example and I strongly doubt there is such for jellyfish or sponges. Communication does not imply consciousness.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160283 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
No, living things are NOT made of a different type of matter than non-living things. The atoms are identical between living and non-living things. The photons are not different. The small molecules are the same. The *only* difference is that life has a high degree of polymerization with a large variety in the particulars of the polymerization. The same laws of physics and chemistry still apply.
Your first article is *speculation* about the emission of photons and sound for communication. I rather think it unlikely that thi sis the reality at the bacterial level. Molecules exchanged, yes, but I would like to see evidence of sound or light communication.
Diamonds are made of carbon atoms yes, but the matter on a molecular level between a living thing and a diamond, are very different. The photons are also very different, they only have 1/3rd the heat , and are defined as Bio-photons because they are so different and also so little understood.

This is the cutting edge of microbiology, as strange as well as foreign in nature to current understanding will cause a paradigm shift in this type thinking. It has already started.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160284 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
You are shifting the definition of communication when you go from bacterial exchanges to this article. All communication at the bacterial level consists of is an exchange of chemical signals that initiate a cascade of other chemical reactions, which changes behavior. Why you think that is consciousness is beyond me.
It's called Quorum sensing, and is an established science of microbial and bacterial communication , that is a realization under study.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#160285 Dec 23, 2013
And whether you believe in God or not. Wishing you all a Safe and Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year or if you prefer Happy and Safe Holidays. This goes out to everyone, even my nemesis Dannyboy.

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160286 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
And that then means it is not a 'conscious' thing: it is an automatic thing.
So, once again, we come down to a matter of definitions. Do bacteria have a sense of self? I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Do plants have a sense of self? Again, I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Does it 'feel like' anything to be a plant? Again, I strongly doubt it. There is no 'consciousness' there.
But there *is* such consciousness for, say a cat or a dog. There *is* such for a bird. I am not so convinced about planaria, for example and I strongly doubt there is such for jellyfish or sponges. Communication does not imply consciousness.
You are applying consciousness and conscious to terms a being with a hundred trillion synapses and the neural net or the most gifted type being ever to grace the known universe.
To understand consciousness on a level so far below the senses you possess, is a very hard thing to do. Of course it is not on a level so high as we sport. But can you realize that consciousness can exist without eyes, ears, nose, touch , or taste, at a levels imperceptible to the amplified perceptions we posses ? Can you even try to think it could?

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160287 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
And that then means it is not a 'conscious' thing: it is an automatic thing.
So, once again, we come down to a matter of definitions. Do bacteria have a sense of self? I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Do plants have a sense of self? Again, I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Does it 'feel like' anything to be a plant? Again, I strongly doubt it. There is no 'consciousness' there.
But there *is* such consciousness for, say a cat or a dog. There *is* such for a bird. I am not so convinced about planaria, for example and I strongly doubt there is such for jellyfish or sponges. Communication does not imply consciousness.
Here you falter and badly , sea stars and and echinoderms are at a different level than us .
But clearly are conscious and have a will as well as plans, not easily understood or realized without time lapsed film techniques.

http://vimeo.com/45154593

“ad victoriam”

Level 8

Since: Dec 10

arte et marte

#160288 Dec 23, 2013
polymath257 wrote:
<quoted text>
And that then means it is not a 'conscious' thing: it is an automatic thing.
So, once again, we come down to a matter of definitions. Do bacteria have a sense of self? I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Do plants have a sense of self? Again, I strongly doubt it. How would we tell? Does it 'feel like' anything to be a plant? Again, I strongly doubt it. There is no 'consciousness' there.
But there *is* such consciousness for, say a cat or a dog. There *is* such for a bird. I am not so convinced about planaria, for example and I strongly doubt there is such for jellyfish or sponges. Communication does not imply consciousness.
Do rocks communicate, or do computers? Only if we define the communication between living things doe it imply consciousness. Do we communicate with the dead..the unconscious? hmmm
Does the dead communicate at all ? Does the unconscious communicate? Maybe because unconscious is a state of conscious. Does communications succeeded when one (the sender or the receiver) is unconscious? hmmm.

“I am Sisyphus”

Since: Nov 07

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#160289 Dec 23, 2013
replaytime wrote:
<quoted text>
You don't think all living things have the drive/will to survive? Try choking a cat, a dog, a rabbit, etc etc. Everything that is trying to be killed or being killed fights back, even bacteria. That fight is the drive/will for survival. If living things had no drive/will to live they would just lay there and die. That drive/will comes from consciousness of knowing that when something is trying to kill you, that is not normal so in response fight for survival is what you get.

You were good till you made the presumption that it was consciousness that caused the behavior.

I once had a nasty virus on my computer that refused to die. It took quite a lot to finally kill it.

But it was not conscious.

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#160292 Dec 23, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
You were good till you made the presumption that it was consciousness that caused the behavior.
I once had a nasty virus on my computer that refused to die. It took quite a lot to finally kill it.
But it was not conscious.
Your computer is not alive as in "life" either now is it?

“I am Sisyphus”

Since: Nov 07

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#160293 Dec 23, 2013
replaytime wrote:
<quoted text>
Your computer is not alive as in "life" either now is it?

true, but that avoids the point, does it not?

“Ask Randy From Ballwin”

Level 5

Since: Mar 13

He Is A Sock Know It All

#160294 Dec 23, 2013
Dogen wrote:
<quoted text>
true, but that avoids the point, does it not?
Not really. Life is life full of consciousness, feeling, thought, and fights for survival to carry on. Your PC is nothing more than a creation from man and only does what man programs it to do. If you pull its plug it would not know nor would it care.

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