On 10/5/2012 2:04 AM, Alberto G. Corona wrote:
Dear john:

2012/10/4 John Clark <johnkcl...@gmail.com <mailto:johnkcl...@gmail.com>>

     Alberto G. Corona <agocor...@gmail.com <mailto:agocor...@gmail.com>> Wrote:

            >> Mother Nature (Evolution) is a slow and stupid tinkerer, it had 
over 3
            billion years to work on the problem but it couldn't even come up 
with a
            macroscopic part that could rotate in 360 degrees!

        > First of all, 360 degrees rotation is present in the flagela of the 
        invented about 3800 million years ago

    I know, that's why I said "macroscopic". It's easy to make if the wheel is
    microscopic because nutriments can just diffuse in and waste products 
diffuse out;
    but as parts get bigger the volume increases by the cube of the radius but 
    surface area only increases by the square, so when things get big diffusion 
    isn't good enough. Evolution never figured out how to do better and make a 
    large enough to see, but people did.

I explained in a post above why evolution does not select weels. An autonomous living being must be topologically connected, and weels are not. This is a neat consequence of the need of repairability. No autonomous robot with weels can work for long time without supoort.. This is explained in detail somewhere above.

I can imagine a design in which wheels are connected to the circulatory system just as some vehicles are built with hydraulic motors in their wheels. Or the wheels might be separate organisms in a symbiotic relation. Those are possible - but it's too hard to get there from here. So you make the point yourself, evolution is constrained in ways that rational design is not.

        > under intense comet bombardement. try to do it yourself in the same 

    Oh I think if I tried real hard I could figure out how to make a wheel that 
    didn't need a electron microscope to see, particularly if you gave me 3.8 
    years to work on the problem. But the task stumped Evolution.

        > If there is no weel in natural evolution is because legs are far 

    Claiming that nature could find no use for a macroscopic part that could 
move in 360
    degrees, a part like a neck or a shoulder or a wrist or a ball bearing, is 
    not credible. And I have no doubt that a supersonic bird or a propeller 
driven whale
    or a fire breathing lizard or a nuclear powered cow could successfully fill
    environmental niches, but making such a thing was just too hard for random 
    and natural selection to do.

        > The claim of superiority of reason over nature is the last vestige of
        unjustified antropocentrism

    Anthropomorphism is a very useful tool but like any tool it can be misused; 
not all
    anthropomorphisms are unjustified.

        > in its most dangerous form: Pride and self worship.

    Guilty as charged, I'm a big fan of pride and self worship, it may be a bit
    dangerous but is sure  beats the hell out of worshiping God.

you at least agree that is dangerous. Beware of all these self-help books. My theory is that self-steem, like suicide and the white of the eyes are social adaptations. No other animal has the white of the eyes. Thanks to it, other people can monitor very well your eye movements, so they can detect your lies, deceptions, but the others can trust you, because you bring them a mechanism for mind reading. In the overall, the social group fitness is inproved.

Thats why sunglasses make people to look untrusty and menacing!!!

I left to you to elaborate the conjecture of why self-steem and suicide are social adaptations.

These social level adaptation may not be good for each one as individuals, but are good for the society. No society, no you. Therefore in the middle-long term, these things are good for you and your descendants.

        > evolution works simultaneously with infinite variables

    Evolution does not work in the rarefied realm of pure mathematics it works 
in the
    physical world, and as near as we can tell in physics there is not a 
infinite number
    of anything.

Evolution works with the computer of all reality, that is at the same time its own game scenario. It is massivelly parallel. It has the maximum paralellism that may be achieved: a computer for each element in the game.

Natural selection only works in the here and now and it only works with whatever random variations occur. That's why isolation in a an environmental niche produces biota well adapted to that niche, but not elsewhere. And such niches depend on the isolation. Once they are open to "all of reality" the marsupials get displaced by the placentals.

        > we NEVER are sure of knowing in FULL the reasons behind an 
evolutionary design

    True, but we don't need to know all the reasons to make something better; 
we don't
    know all the factors than caused bone to have the exact composition that it 
    but a human made titanium girder is a hell of a lot stronger than any bone.

        > That gives evolutionary design an appearance of mess poor design

    It certainly does!

        > This is NOT the case.

    Baloney. Evolution has no need to be perfect because an organism need not be
    perfect, it just needs to be a little better than the competition. Just 
look at the
    cells of the retina of the eye of any vertebrate animal, the blood vessels 
that feed
    those cells and the nerves that communicate with them aren’t in the back of 
the eye
    as would be logical but at the front, so light must pass through them 
before the
    light hits the light sensitive cells, this makes vision less sharp than it 
    otherwise be and creates a blind spot right in the middle of the visual 
field. No
    amount of spin can turn this dopey mess into a good design, a human 
engineer would
    have to be drunk to come up with a hodgepodge like that.

I explained that before , in detail, why this is so. This desing is better because it permits the eye to rotate.

No, what permits the eye to rotate is that all the nerves are gathered into a bundle and exit the eyeball at one place. There is nothing in the orientation of the rods and cones that prevents this arrangement with the nerves behind the photoreceptors. It just point out that the squid eye may also be less than optimum since it could have been arrange to swivel by gathering the nerves into a localized bundle. It's just another illustration that evolution doesn't have to produce the best design, just one that's good enough.


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