Why naturalist atheists need space aliens

But not a God, with moral rules. From campus pastor Peter Burfeind at The Federalist: Lacking any evidence of an actual alien, Hollywood’s aliens speak more about the modern psyche fueling the imaginations of their designers. … The aliens in “Arrival” look like tree trunks. Get it? The trees are coming to tell us to […]

Embargoes: The uniquack approach to science writing

No embargoes: From Ivan Oransky at Retraction Watch: This Thursday, dozens of news outlets will publish stories on the same new study in the journal Science. On Friday, many of those same news outlets will all report on a study in the medical journal the Lancet. These newspapers and magazines will largely talk to the […]

Fascism Watch

One would think that the French, having been overrun by a fascist country in 1940, would be especially careful to reign in the fascist impulses of their progressives.  But one would be wrong: In 2014, in conjunction with World Down Syndrome Day (March 21), the Global Down Syndrome Foundation prepared a two-minute video titled “Dear […]

Top Ten in junk science in 2016?

‘Tis the season of Top Tens. From the American Council on Science and Health here’s the first we got: #8. JAMA goes political. The Journal of the American Medical Association continues gambling with its reputation. This year, it published an article by President Barack Obama, in which he analyzed and applauded the impact of his […]

Why do U.S. media care where American politicians “stand” on “evolution”?

Whatever the media understand the term “evolution” to mean. Whatever politicians could do about it. Is it a secret hunger for the fascist dominance so well exhibited by one of their heros, H.L. Mencken? From O’Leary for News at Salvo: Recently, Phil Plait informed his shocked readers at Slate of a dreadful secret about Republican […]

Should we begin to think in terms of micro-ID and Macro-/ General ID?

. . . that is, the design inference vs. the broader scientific investigation of a world of life and cosmos that are infused with complex, functionally specific information and complex, functional organisation? In the Turing test thread, just now, I raised this issue in responding to GP and SA . . . and I think […]

Prof Bob Marks on what computers can’t do

Evo-Info: Some Things Computers Will Never Do: Nonalgorithmic Creativity and Unknowability: See also: Evolutionary Informatics Lab: A look inside Follow UD News at Twitter!

Paul Nelson discusses origins at Trinity College, Florida

Philosopher of biology Paul Nelson will be speaking this weekend in the vicinity of Trinity College, Florida: Sunday, December 4th, The Crossroads Church, 7975 River Ridge Blvd. New Port Richey, FL Monday, December 5th, at 7:00 pm, University of South Florida, USF Alumni CenterTampa, FL More. See also: What we know and don’t know about the origin […]

Progressive Fascists (But I Repeat Myself) Strike Again

This time they have climate scientist Roger Pielke in their sites, and even being proved correct did not save him: Much to my surprise, I showed up in the WikiLeaks releases before the election. In a 2014 email, a staffer at the Center for American Progress, founded by John Podesta in 2003, took credit for […]

Stasis: Oldest surviving plant genome, gingko biloba, is really big

From ScienceDaily: The research was carried out by a team of scientists at BGI, Zheijiang University and the Chinese Academy of Sciences, who tackled and analyzed an exceptionally large genome, totalling more than 10 billion DNA “letters.” Ginkgo is considered a “living fossil,” meaning its form and structure have changed very little in the 270 […]

Why the sulfur-based life forms never amounted to much

Discussing bacteria that got started before abundant oxygen, Rob Sheldon, our physics colour commentator, writes to explain: According to my favorite microbiologist, Richard Hoover, the fossils are way too big to be sulfur-reducing bacteria. The geologists merely say something like “wow, sulfur-reducing bacteria must have been bigger back then!” which he finds unconvincing. On the […]

UD Guest Post: Dr Eugen S on the second law of thermodynamics (plus . . . ) vs. “evolution”

Our Physicist and Computer Scientist from Russia — and each element of that balance is very relevant — is back, with more.  MOAR, in fact. This time, he tackles the “terror-fitted depths” of thermodynamics and biosemiotics. (NB: Those needing a backgrounder may find an old UD post here and a more recent one here, helpful.) […]

A Tutorial on Specified Complexity

I’ve found that a lot of people who are interested in Intelligent Design are nonetheless unaware of the mathematics behind it. Therefore, I decided to do some videos teaching the basic ideas.

Genuine clue to why orchid mantises look like flowers

Not that it helps Darwinism one bit. From ScienceDaily: By studying the evolutionary relationships of the orchid mantis and its distant relatives, the team discovered that females in the orchid mantis lineage increased in size and changed color over their evolutionary history to gain advantage over large pollinating insects, such as bees, as well as […]

Researchers: Bacteria fossils predate the origin of oxygen

From Melanie Schefft at University of Cincinnati Magazine: UC geologist uncovers 2.5 billion-year-old fossils of bacteria that predate the formation of oxygen. They are sulfur-oxidizing bacteria. The 2.52 billion-year-old sulfur-oxidizing bacteria are described by Czaja as exceptionally large, spherical-shaped, smooth-walled microscopic structures much larger than most modern bacteria, but similar to some modern single-celled organisms […]

Sexual selection is a bogus concept

No, that’s not the way the ScienceDaily media release puts it, of course: Why do some animals have extravagant, showy ornaments — think elk and deer antlers, peacock feathers and horns on dung beetles — that can be a liability to survival? Charles Darwin couldn’t figure it out, but now a Northwestern University research team […]

Convergent evolution: Once more, why do unrelated animals have pseudo-thumbs?

From Juliet Lamb at J-Stor: Take the Giant Panda, for example. Watch a panda eat, and you’ll notice the thumb-like appendage that helps it hold onto bamboo stalks. The panda’s thumb isn’t actually a thumb; it’s an elongated wrist bone that opposes the five true fingers of the panda’s hand, allowing it to grip and […]

BTB: Points to ponder as we look at Crick’s understanding of DNA as text, since March 19, 1953

A few days back, I headlined a clip from Crick’s letter to his son Michael, March 19, 1953: The main text is accessible here (with page scans). Sans diagrams: >>My Dear Michael, Jim Watson and I have probably made a most important discovery. We have built a model for the structure of des-oxy-ribose-nucleic-acid (read it […]

Tool-making from 300 thousand years ago – but by whom no one knows

From Ross Pomeroy at RealClearScience: Sixteen years ago, road workers detonated a controlled explosive to remove a large limestone boulder blocking a planned roadway outside of Tel Aviv in Israel. Soon after the dust settled, it became clear that the road would need to be rerouted. The workers had stumbled upon a vast cave, one […]

Larry Sanger, Co-founder of Wikipedia, Agrees That it Does not Follow its Own Neutrality Policy. 

Larry Sanger is the co-founder of Wikipedia and the author of its “neutrality policy.”  Mr. Sanger posted an article today about media bias in which he alluded to the neutrality policy he drafted. I replied (see the combox of the article): “Wikipedia’s neutrality policy.” I’ve been reading Wikipedia articles for years, and from the evidence […]

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