On Thu, Feb 12, 2009 at 09:05:20AM -0800, Tom Caylor wrote:
> Today is Charles Darwin's 200th birthday (the 150th anniversay of the
> publication of "On the Origin of Species", and we Americans at least
> are also celebrating the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln.
> Perhaps at this milestone it would be good to bring up the question,
> What bearing does Darwin's legacy have on the topic here on the
> Everything List?  Of course that begs the question, What is Darwin's
> legacy?

I, for one, think evolution has everything to do with this
topic. Chapters 6 & 7 of my book present my argument - I'd be wasting
bandwidth by reposting it here. David Deutsch also argues for
evolution's importance in FOR, in his own way. I happen to think that my
presentation is a decade younger, and a decade more sophisticated, but
that essentially it is the same argument.

> One difference that I have observed, to put it in words sometimes used
> on this List, is in whether or not the first person experience is
> accepted as a reality that cannot be reduced to a third person view.
> Perhaps on the "no first/third person disctinction" side of this fence
> is Dennet, as in his book Darwin's Dangerous Idea, where he maintains
> that the whole process of evolution, and in fact all of reality, can
> be reduced to an algorithm.  

To be truthful, I don't think the concept of an algorithm even makes
sense without a 1/3 person distinction. Without at least two layers of
description, there can be no information (& no complexity nor entropy)
- see chapter 2 of my book.

> On the other side of the fence might be
> Gould, or the biologist Carl Woese, as in his paper "A New Biology for
> a New Century".  Another way to state this difference is to say that
> the mind/body problem is is/is not solvable.  If it is, then perhaps
> reductionism is valid, and this would shed a different light on the
> Everything problem.  It it is not, this would shed a different light
> on the whole thing.
> Any thoughts on this deep and wide arena?
> P.S. I'm hoping this doesn't start a rant against anti-science views,
> of which I am not a holder.  There is something far deeper going on
> here.

Prof Russell Standish                  Phone 0425 253119 (mobile)
UNSW SYDNEY 2052                         hpco...@hpcoders.com.au
Australia                                http://www.hpcoders.com.au

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