What happens when engineers look at biology? Unlike evolutionists, they see designs for all kinds of useful applications. “Biomimicry,” explains one article, “is an incredibly productive technique.” Read more
Nice article Dr. Hunter,
Thinnest ever camera sees like a trilobite – December 2010
Excerpt: An unusual arthropod eye design that maximizes image resolution has inspired the design of the thinnest stills and video camera yet made.
Human Eye Gives Researchers Visionary Design for New, More Natural Lens Technology – (Nov. 13, 2012)
Excerpt: Drawing heavily upon ‘nature’ for inspiration, a team of researchers has created a new artificial lens that is nearly identical to the natural lens of the human eye.,,
“Applying ‘naturally occurring’ material architectures, similar to those found in the layers of butterfly wing scales, human tendons, and even in the human eye, to multilayered plastic systems has enabled discoveries and products with enhanced mechanical strength, novel reflective properties, and optics with enhanced power,” explains Ponting.
“The moth eye has been considered one of the most exciting bio structures because of its unique nano-optical properties….and our work further improved upon this fascinating structure and demonstrated its use in medical imaging materials, where it promises to achieve lower patient radiation doses, higher-resolution imaging of human organs”
P. Pignalosa, Bo Liu, Hong Chen, H. Smith, and Yasha Yi. Giant light extraction enhancement of medical imaging scintillation materials using biologically inspired integrated nanostructures. Opt. Lett., 37, 2808-2810 (2012)
Mantis Shrimp Eyes Could Show Way To Better DVD And CD players
“Our work reveals for the first time the unique design and mechanism of the quarter-wave plate in the mantis shrimp’s eye. It really is exceptional — out-performing anything we humans have so far been able to create.”
Amazing Animals: Design Vs. Darwinism – Christopher Ashcraft – video (please note the “lobster eye” inspired camera that can see through walls.)
Shark Skin As Antibiotic
Excerpt: New technologies developed after studying shark skin will soon be appearing at a hospital near you. Scientists at Sharklet Technologies, a Florida-based biotech company, have been studying shark skin for the interesting fact that bacteria just doesn’t seen to stick to it. Under the microscope, it appears that shark skin is composed of diamond-shaped bumps that give it this unique property. Hospital tests using plastic tubing (as used in intravenous lines and catheters) printed with this shark skin pattern showed that microorganisms which can cause potentially serious harm, such as E. coli and Staphylococcus Aureus, were unable to establish colonies large enough to infect humans.
Shark Skin Inspires Ship Coating
Excerpt: The coating doesn’t go anywhere near the engines — it will be applied on the hull of ships below the waterline, where all manner of algae, barnacles and other wee beasties attach themselves, slowing ships and reducing their maneuverability.,,, Sharks don’t have algae or barnacle problems despite being underwater all their lives. Shark skin is made up of tiny rectangular scales topped with even smaller spines or bristles. This makes shark skin rough to the touch. This irregular surface makes it difficult for plant spores to get a good grip and grow into algae or other plants.
What sandblasted scorpions can teach aircraft engineers – February 2012
Excerpt: Then they tried aiming sand grains at steel in a wind tunnel. The upshot was that the pattern most resembling scorpion armour—with grooves that were 2mm apart, 5mm wide and 4mm high—proved best able to withstand the assault.
Folding light: Wrinkles and twists boost power from solar panels – April 27, 2012
Excerpt: Taking their cue from the humble leaf, researchers have used microscopic folds on the surface of photovoltaic material to significantly increase the power output of flexible, low-cost solar cells.,,, “I expected that it would increase the photocurrent because the folded surface is quite similar to the morphology of leaves, a natural system with high light harvesting efficiency,” said Kim, a postdoctoral researcher in chemical and biological engineering. “However, when I actually constructed solar cells on top of the folded surface, its effect was better than my expectations.”
Although the technique results in an overall increase in efficiency, the results were particularly significant at the red side of the light spectrum, which has the longest wavelengths of visible light. The efficiency of conventional solar panels drops off radically as light’s wavelength increases, and almost no light is absorbed as the spectrum approaches the infrared. But the folding technique increased absorption at this end of the spectrum by roughly 600 percent, the researchers found.
Nature as a Guide for Efficient Design – Ann Gauger – May 10, 2012
Excerpt: Now researchers have found that one of the patterns derived from the Fibonacci series that is present in sunflowers provides the most efficient arrangement for mirrors in solar power generation.
Nature by Numbers – Fibonacci video
Nature: Evolved or Intelligently Designed? by Dr. Mark Biedebach
Excerpt: “As an engineer with a PhD in biophysics and a researching neurophysiologist, I could never escape the impression that there are a large number of living organisms that appear to exhibit engineering design. Therefore, I was happy to contribute an article expanding on the recent imitation of sunflower design (a Fermat spiral) by MIT researchers seeking a better arrangement for mirrors in solar power stations. In this case, the researchers looked for help in their intelligent design from nature–so could it be that nature itself was intelligently designed? Or is, as Richard Dawkins claims, the design really only “apparent?””
Eyeballing Design “Biomimetics” Exposes Attacks on ID as Poorly Designed By: Casey Luskin – December 2011
Perhaps the most familiar example of biomimetics is the body shape of birds serving as the inspiration for aircraft design. But the list of fascinating cases where engineers have mimicked nature to develop or improve human technology goes on and on:
• Faster Speedo swimsuits have been developed by studying the properties of sharkskin.
• Spiny hooks on plant seeds and fruits led to the development of Velcro.
• Better tire treads were created by understanding the shape of toe pads on tree frogs.
• Polar bear furs have inspired textiles and thermal collectors.
• Studying hippo sweat promises to lead to better sunscreen.
• Volvo has studied how locusts swarm without crashing into one another to develop an anti-collision system.
• Mimicking mechanisms of photosynthesis and chemical energy conversion might lead to the creation of cheaper solar cells.
• Color-changing cuttlefish have inspired television screens that use a fraction of the power of standard TVs.
• DNA might become a framework for building faster microchips.
• The ability of the human ear to pick up many frequencies of sound is being replicated to build better antennas.
• The Namibian fog-basking beetle has inspired methods of desalinizing ocean water, growing crops, and producing electricity, all in one!
Welcome to CoSBi – (Computational and Systems Biology)
Current quote on main page:
“Those who took other inspiration than from nature, master of masters, were labouring in vain.” – Leonardo Da Vinci
Original Quote on main page:
“Biological systems are the most parallel systems ever studied and we hope to use our better understanding of how living systems handle information to design new computational paradigms, programming languages and software development environments. The net result would be the design and implementation of better applications firmly grounded on new computational, massively parallel paradigms in many different areas.”
William Bialek – Professor Of Physics – Princeton University:
Excerpt: “A central theme in my research is an appreciation for how well things “work” in biological systems. It is, after all, some notion of functional behavior that distinguishes life from inanimate matter, and it is a challenge to quantify this functionality in a language that parallels our characterization of other physical systems. Strikingly, when we do this (and there are not so many cases where it has been done!), the performance of biological systems often approaches some limits set by basic physical principles. While it is popular to view biological mechanisms as an historical record of evolutionary and developmental compromises, these observations on functional performance point toward a very different view of life as having selected a set of near optimal mechanisms for its most crucial tasks.”
OT: Dr. William Dembski has a article up on ENV:
Rational Justification as Detailed Articulation: A Reply to Barham and Nagel
William A. Dembski December 6, 2012
I recently found out the BATTERY came from mimicking some kind of electric fush and this century or so ago.
It follows nature in its brilliance already has answers for human needs.
Seeing a creator and so design behind nature more likely makes one copy nature or seek out its wisdom.
Seeing selection on mutation would more likely make one ignore nature as the chaos of chance would not easily be replicated.
Biomimicry is a gain for creationist thoughts and should not be welcome amongst thoughtful evolutionists.
OT: “Walking On Air” – NASA (Expedition 30) – time lapse video
6 Inspiring Time-Lapse Videos To Watch The World Go By [Stuff to Watch]
I don’t think we’ve seen anything yet. I bet random chance will have some designs for shark skins up its sleeve that’ll make all that look like child’s play. Same with the moths’ eyes ‘n’ stuff.
OT: “The more we learn about the chemical basis of life and the intricacy of the genetic code, the more unbelievable the standard historical account becomes.”
– Thomas Nagel – “Mind & Cosmos”
Of note to post 7:
Does Life Use a Non-Random Set of Amino Acids? – Jonathan M. – April 2011
Excerpt: The authors compared the coverage of the standard alphabet of 20 amino acids for size, charge, and hydrophobicity with equivalent values calculated for a sample of 1 million alternative sets (each also comprising 20 members) drawn randomly from the pool of 50 plausible prebiotic candidates. The results? The authors noted that: “…the standard alphabet exhibits better coverage (i.e., greater breadth and greater evenness) than any random set for each of size, charge, and hydrophobicity, and for all combinations thereof.”
Extreme genetic code optimality from a molecular dynamics calculation of amino acid polar requirement – 2009
Excerpt: A molecular dynamics calculation of the amino acid polar requirement is used to score the canonical genetic code. Monte Carlo simulation shows that this computational polar requirement has been optimized by the canonical genetic code, an order of magnitude more than any previously known measure, effectively ruling out a vertical evolution dynamics.
Deciphering Design in the Genetic Code – Fazale Rana
Excerpt: The genetic code’s error-minimization properties are actually more dramatic than these results indicate. When researchers calculated the error-minimization capacity of one million randomly generated genetic codes, they discovered that the error-minimization values formed a distribution where the naturally occurring genetic code’s capacity occurred outside the distribution.18 Researchers estimate the existence of 10^18 possible genetic codes possessing the same type and degree of redundancy as the universal genetic code. All of these codes fall within the error-minimization distribution. This finding means that of 10^18 possible genetic codes, few, if any, have an error-minimization capacity that approaches the code found universally in nature.
DNA – The Genetic Code – Optimal Error Minimization & Parallel Codes – Dr. Fazale Rana – video
This is real science with real results, and it owes nothing to the pipe dreams of evolutionists. How did they convince anyone that their endless, contradictory just-so stories were in any way “scientific”?
PS: A brief glimpse at the feces-flinging of the enraged monkeys in the comments section of the linked article makes me appreciative of the moderation here.
OT: New from BIO-Complexity, by Winston Ewert, William A. Dembski, Ann K. Gauger, and Robert J. Marks II:
Time and Information in Evolution
Time and Information in Evolution: Winston Ewert, William A. Dembski, Ann K. Gauger, and Robert J. Marks II
Abstract: Wilf and Ewens argue in a recent paper that there is plenty of time for evolution to occur. They base this claim on a mathematical model in which beneficial mutations accumulate simultaneously and independently, thus allowing changes that require a large number of mutations to evolve over comparatively short time periods. Because changes evolve independently and in parallel rather than sequentially, their model scales logarithmically rather than exponentially. This approach does not accurately reflect biological evolution, however, for two main reasons. First, within their model are implicit information sources, including the equivalent of a highly informed oracle that prophesies when a mutation is “correct,” thus accelerating the search by the evolutionary process. Natural selection, in contrast, does not have access to information about future benefits of a particular mutation, or where in the global fitness landscape a particular mutation is relative to a particular target. It can only assess mutations based on their current effect on fitness in the local fitness landscape. Thus the presence of this oracle makes their model radically different from a real biological search through fitness space. Wilf and Ewens also make unrealistic biological assumptions that, in effect, simplify the search. They assume no epistasis between beneficial mutations, no linkage between loci, and an unreal- istic population size and base mutation rate, thus increasing the pool of beneficial mutations to be searched. They neglect the effects of genetic drift on the probability of fixation and the negative effects of simultaneously accumulating deleterious mutations. Finally, in their model they represent each genetic locus as a single letter. By doing so, they ignore the enormous sequence complexity of actual genetic loci (typically hundreds or thousands of nucleotides long), and vastly oversimplify the search for functional variants. In similar fashion, they assume that each evolutionary “advance” requires a change to just one locus, despite the clear evidence that most biological functions are the product of multiple gene products working together. Ignoring these biological realities infuses considerable active information into their model and eases the model’s evolutionary process.
Organic life is the ultimate technology, and all technology will improve towards biology.
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