On Saturday, April 20, 2013 4:15:17 AM UTC-4, Bruno Marchal wrote:
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> On 19 Apr 2013, at 19:52, Craig Weinberg wrote:
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> On Friday, April 19, 2013 9:59:34 AM UTC-4, Bruno Marchal wrote:
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>> On 18 Apr 2013, at 22:05, Craig Weinberg wrote:
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>> On Thursday, April 18, 2013 1:29:29 PM UTC-4, Brent wrote:
>>>
>>>  On 4/18/2013 8:15 AM, John Clark wrote:
>>>  
>>> On Wed, Apr 17, 2013  meekerdb <meek...@verizon.net> wrote:
>>>
>>>  > It's been proposed that the susceptibility to mutation is itself a 
>>>> characteristic subject to natural selection.
>>>>
>>>
>>> If a animal is undergoing stress (too hot, too cold, too thirsty, too 
>>> hungry whatever) that means there is something about it that is not well 
>>> adapted to its environment; I can imagine a gene that in times of stress 
>>> would switch on and produce a chemical that increases the rate of random 
>>> mutation in the genes of the offspring of that stressed animal. Most of the 
>>> offspring would have mutated in the wrong direction and die but they would 
>>> have probably died anyway because they would have been as poorly adapted as 
>>> there parent was, but if the mutational effect was not too strong (even if 
>>> it's in the right direction you can change things too far) it could 
>>> increase the likelihood that at least one of its children would be better 
>>> adapted than its parent. However I maintain that such a stress induced 
>>> mutation producing gene has had no significant effect on the history of 
>>> life, at least not in animals that reproduce sexually.   
>>>  
>>>
>>> That's a kind of Lamarckian adjustment of mutability.  What I was 
>>> referring to is simple Darwinian adjustment of mutability.  There are error 
>>> correcting mechanisms for DNA reproduction.  Suppose they worked perfectly: 
>>> then there would never be any genetic variation and when the evironment 
>>> changed the species would go extinct.  But if they had a slight error rate 
>>> then there would develop a range of genetic diversity that might, under 
>>> environmental change, result in survivors or even new species.  So on 
>>> strictly Darwinian theory the DNA error correction may be selected to be 
>>> less than perfect.
>>>
>>
>> How does a deterministic universe invent something which is intentionally 
>> less than perfect? I'm not saying that it couldn't, or didn't, but why 
>> would there really even be any possibility of volatility built into physics 
>> in the first place? What, in a deterministic universe, constitutes an 
>> 'error'?
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>> A deterministic reality might be unable to make an error at the "bottom 
>> level", but if it can emulate high level complex processes, like running 
>> some complex software, and such software can make an error with respect to 
>> the goal (like "survive"). Look at some youtube "crash investigation" 
>> showing why today some plane crash are due to computer errors. The error 
>> can have multiple origin, hardware or software.
>> Likewise it is reasonable for a biologist to say that when a DNA 
>> polymerase introduces an unwanted supplementary nucleotide, it is making an 
>> error. In fact living cells contains a lot of error correction code to 
>> handle such cases, with 'error' taken in a sense similar to the one used in 
>> computer science.  This illustrates that some errorless low-level can 
>> support higher level errors.
>>
>> Bruno
>>
>
> It seems like you are bringing in empirical evidence of errors in the real 
> world and using that to justify the expectation that at some point between 
> low-level and high-level, this 'error' potential emerges as a condition of 
> complexity.
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> OK.
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> What I am asking for though is precisely that this point be explained by 
> theory. What is the theory of the emergence of the first error?
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> It is when god put the tree of knowledge in the garden :)
>
> More seriously, it is when universal machine/number begins to refer and 
> self-refer. That ability makes it possible to accelerate the computations 
> relatively to each other, but entails the possiblity of error.
>

Why does it entail that possibility, i.e. how does 'error' become a 
possibility?
 

>
> The deep reason is already contained in Gödel's second incompleteness: if 
> I am consistent then it is consistent that I am inconsistent (Dt -> ~BDt). 
> Simple but rich correct theories can be come inconsistent, or consistent 
> but unsound. 
>

Not satisfying. A paradox does not automatically conjure a phenomena where 
determinism arbitrarily fails on a infrequent but quasi-inevitable basis. 

Craig


> Bruno
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> Craig
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>> Craig
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>>> Brent
>>>
>>>  
>>> Such a stress-mutation gene has never been found in a sexual animal and 
>>> it's easy to see why. In sex all the genes are not inherited in one big 
>>> package but are shuffled around with the genes of the other parent, so a 
>>> animal that was lucky enough to inherit the good genes produced by the 
>>> hypothetical stress-mutation gene but not the stress-mutation gene itself 
>>> would do just as well or better than a animal that got both the good genes 
>>> and the stress-mutation gene that is no longer active because the animal is 
>>> no longer under stress. So even if such a stress-mutation gene did occur in 
>>> one individual in a population it would vanish in just a few generations 
>>> from the gene pool. Natural Selection doesn't figure  "I better keep that 
>>> stress-mutation gene because even though there is no stress now that could 
>>> change and such a gene might come in handy in the future".  Evolution has 
>>> no foresight and can't think and all that matters to it is what's happening 
>>> right here right now.  
>>>
>>>   John K Clark 
>>>
>>>     
>>>
>>>
>>>  
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