Animals, abstraction, arithmetic and language

During the past two weeks, over at Evolution News and Views, Professor Michael Egnor has been arguing that it is the capacity for abstract thought which distinguishes humans from other animals, and that human language arises from this capacity. While I share Dr. Egnor’s belief in human uniqueness, I have to take issue with his […]

Theistic evolution: All evolution, no real theism

But you knew that, didn’t you? From Waynesburg University (Pennsylvania) biology prof Wayne Rossiter, author of In the Shadow of Oz, : I’ve jumped to the final (summary chapter, offered by Neil Spurway), because it is one of the more dramatic examples of just how far theistic evolution can go. Here we finally see someone […]

When Darwin got hold of language studies…

Linguist Noel Rude on Tom Wolfe: Just read Tom Wolfe’s The Origins of Speech: In the beginning was Chomsky. It was so interesting and so well written I couldn’t put it down. Michael Denton, you might remember, enlisted Noam Chomsky in his recent critique of Darwin, even as now Tom Wolfe sees Daniel L. Everett […]

Free will viewed in brain?

From Johns Hopkins U: Johns Hopkins University researchers are the first to glimpse the human brain making a purely voluntary decision to act. Unlike most brain studies where scientists watch as people respond to cues or commands, Johns Hopkins researchers found a way to observe people’s brain activity as they made choices entirely on their […]

Obama is not chief medical scientist?

From Alex Berezow and Tom Hartsfield at LA Times: The Journal of the American Medical Assn. recently published a very unusual article: a scientific study authored by a sitting president of the United States. That’s never happened before. In a sense, it’s cool that President Obama cares enough about science to want to publish a […]

Moshe Averick’s Nonsense! updated

He’s back! At Amazon: Is Atheism more rational than Monotheism? Atheists claim so, but this fascinating, original and meticulously researched masterpiece proves otherwise. Exploring the Modern Atheistic movement in its failed attempts to confront the baffling scientific mysteries of the Origin of Life and Human Consciousness, Man’s Search for Meaning, and the relentless human drive […]

How humans discovered fire (again)

From American Council on Science and Health, In Dr. Gowlett’s analysis, our ancestors’ first interaction with fire probably came following a lightning storm or other weather event that triggered natural wildfires. These wildfires would cause animals to scatter, making them easy pickings for early humans waiting on the periphery. (Other animals, such as hawks, are […]

People more honest than thought?

From Economist: “IN THE state of nature, profit is the measure of right,” wrote Thomas Hobbes, a philosopher with a dim view of human nature.More. The mag wants you to pay to find out, but we can tell you for free: We keep each other honest . See also: How can we believe in naturalism […]

Science looks cute in those fascist jackboots

From guest blogger Amanda Freise at Scientific American: It’s Time for Scientists to Stop Explaining So Much Research shows that more facts don’t necessarily lead to changed minds, but my colleagues have a hard time accepting it Not to leave you in suspense or anything: This theory of science communication, the so-called “deficit model,” suggests […]

Favoured particles on death row?

From Jacob Aron at New Scientist:One of the world’s leading dark matter detectors has wrapped up a nearly two-year-long search for the mysterious particles, without finding a single whiff. The results suggest that the days may be numbered for the dominant model of dark matter. More. But then, this is from new Scientist, our favourite […]

Does “race” exist?

From Steve Novella at Neurologica: The scientific question of whether or not race exists is, in my opinion, not completely objectively answerable. It depends. Is Pluto a planet or dwarf planet? Astronomers can reasonably disagree about where to draw the line. More. If only people would just shut up after that, a lot of social […]

Dumb ugly: If humans evolved to survive car crashes

From Andrew Del Colle at Road and Track: “The truth is, our cars have evolved a lot faster than we have,” says David Logan, a team member on the project and road safety engineer at the Monash University’s accident research center. “Our bodies are just not equipped to handle the forces in common crash scenarios.” […]

Why Similarities Do Not Prove the Absence of Design

The following is section 2.3 of my new book  Christianity for Doubters. As the title indicates, much of this book is explicitly theological, but the first two chapters are about intelligent design. In the preface, I wrote “Of course, you do not have to believe anything in chapters 3-6 of this book or anything in […]

Do Computers Think Creatively?

The many advances in computer technology have convinced many people that AI is real and it is coming soon. This article focuses on the concept of creativity, and what that means for the question of whether someone can actually build an “artificial intelligence” with computers. Read More

The “Eyes” Have It!!

Scientists have examined the ability of the human eye to detect single photons. It turns out that they can. Previously it was thought that the eye could detect as few as five to seven, but the present study shows that they human eye is capable of detecting a single photon: this is really a remarkable […]

Peer review: The Hoax on Us

From Salvo: An entertaining but revealing development in science culture in recent years has been the intentionally nonsensical academic paper. Earlier this year, political scientist Peter Dreier admitted at Prospect that his abstract for a panel of six years ago, “On the Absence of Absences,” was “academic drivel”: I tried, as best I could within […]

Quote of the day: Re New Scientist on Darwin

At “New Scientist peddles Darwinism even now. Weeds grow,” we learned, The work of Charles Darwin showed, irrefutably, that humans are just another animal occupying a small branch on a vast tree of life. No divine spark is needed to explain our existence and traits. bornagain77 writes, Perhaps by irrefutable proof’ he means the fact […]

New Scientist peddles Darwinism even now. Weeds grow.

Can anyone believe this? From John van Wyhe at New Scientist: Evolution is the most revolutionary concept in the history of science. Nothing else has more radically changed our understanding of the natural world and ourselves. Nothing? The work of Charles Darwin showed, irrefutably, that humans are just another animal occupying a small branch on […]

Tom Wolfe: What we think we know re evolution is wrong

  People know American author Tom Wolfe best for Bonfire of the Vanities and Radical Chic. He coined phrases for people who sense that something is wrong with the decades-long descent. Many probably don’t know that he doubted Darwin’s hegemony would last ages before the Royal Society began to wonder. He gave it forty years. […]

Was life found on Mars 40 years ago?

From Ethan Siegel at Forbes: The first test was performed first, and came back negative. The second test was next, and also came back negative. By time the third test was performed, with both landers in situ, the prospects were pretty grim, but the data was taken anyway. To the surprise of almost everyone, both […]

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