Re: [OriginsTalk] Re: Information
- To All,----- Original Message -----From: Daniel EdingtonSent: Monday, June 30, 2003 3:37 AMSubject: [OriginsTalk] Re: Information,><snip>>Daniel commented:
As I pointed out in a previous post, one that you ignored, the fact
that structures in nature have a purpose is not proof that they were
created. Just because evolution has no purpose or plan does not mean
that object that result from evolution can not have purpose.
Since "purpose" necessarily means that consciousthinking beings exist, then Daniel seems to be proposingthat a "fortituous concourse of atoms" can happenin such a way that it did in fact produce such a "thinkingconscious being.Moreover, since those who propose such thingsusually also believe that the only future of suchthings is a few short years of toil and sorrow, followedby complete cessation of existence, then thatsort of "purpose" does not seem to have anyrelevance or meaning anyway!Daniel continues:
Consider that evolution working over billions of years produces many
more designs that do not work than ones that do.>Daniel does not seem to grasp the fact that "evolution"cannot "work" at all until after some highly complex"designs" are ALREADY in existence. This is the oneproblem that most evolutionists admit has themcompletely baffled and without any sort ofexplanation!Most evolutionists seem to be almost DESPERATEto distance evolution from biogenesis for just thisreason. One evolutionist has gone so far as to statethat;Enzymic catalysis and DNA replication today are so
thoroughly interwoven in living cells that it is hard to
see what a simpler system might have been like. But as the
British physicist J. D. Bernal wrote: "The picture of the
solitary molecule of DNA on a primitive seashore generating
the rest of life was put forward with slightly less
plausibility than that of Adam and Eve in the Garden."(Scientific American, Richard E. Dickerson, September 1978,
vol. 239, number 3, page 65)Perhaps it is little wonder then that evolutionistsare often reduced to using the word "MIRACLE" inthis area, as in the following example;"The important point is that since the origin of life
belongs in the category of at-least-once phenomena, time is
on its side. However improbable we regard this event, or
any of the steps which it involves, given enough time it
will almost certainly happen at least once. And for life as
we know it, with its capacity for growth and reproduction,
once may be enough.""Time is in fact the hero of the plot. The time with
which we have to deal is of the order of two billion years.
What we regard as impossible on the basis of human
experience is meaningless here. Given so much time, the
"impossible" becomes possible, the possible probable, and
the probable virtually certain. One has only to wait: time
itself performs the miracles."(George Wald (late Professor of Biology, Harvard
University), "The origin of life". Scientific American,
vol.191(2), August 1954, p.48. (My reference from "TheRevised Quote Book.))Does Daniel really think that "time performsmiracles" and if so, does he really regard that as ascientific proposition? The following apt illustrationwas posted here previously by someone, and iswell worth repeating.--------------------------------------
"Get Your Own Dirt!"One day a group of scientists got together and decided
that man had come a long way and no longer needed God.
So they picked one scientist to go and tell Him that they
were done with Him.The scientist walked up to God and said, "God, we've
decided that we no longer need you. We're to the point
that we can clone people and do many miraculous things,
so why don't you just go on and get lost."God listened very patiently and kindly to the man and
after the scientist was done talking, God said, "Very
well, how about this, let's say we have a man making
contest." To which the scientist replied, "OK, great!"But God added, "Now, we're going to do this just like I
did back in the old days with Adam."The scientist said, "Sure, no problem" and bent down and
grabbed himself a handful of dirt.God just looked at him and said, "No, no, no. You go get
your own dirt!"==================================So Daniel needs his "own dirt" before his evolutionaryideas can even get started!L.K. Appleton
lappleto@...From my earliest training as a scientist, I was very strongly brainwashed
to believe that science cannot be consistent with any kind of deliberate
creation. That notion has had to be painfully shed.
- From Will Brooks Saturday 24th August 12.10 PM GMT
I recently posted a review of Without Excuse by Werner Gitt Ph.D. and this post is a summary of only 60 pages in a scholarly publication of 352 pages.
Werner was born in 1932. In 1963 he enrolled at the Technical University of Hanover and in 1968 he completed his studies as Diplom Ingenieur. In 1970 he received his doctorate summa cum laude together with the prestigious Borchers Medal from the Technical University of Aachen. He was appointed Director and Professor at the German Federal Institute of Physics and Technology in 1978. He has written numerous scientific papers in the field of information science, numerical mathematics, and control engineering. In 1990 he initiated the Conference for Information Science which is attende annually by around 150 participants. His homepage is www.wernergitt.de
In his book Werner talks of 5 levels of Information and provides a most useful diagram to illustrate his meaning. Unfortunately, the diagram does not scan to Origins Talk format and therefore is not included in this summary. If anyone wishes I will be pleased to send a copy.
(cosyntics means code plus syntax; apobetics means purpose)
(ES 23: There are no known natural laws through which matter alone can give rise to Universal Information, neither are there any `random' physical processes or material phenomena known that can do this.)
It should be clear from the above that Universal Information comprises many interrelated levels. Despite Shannon's great contributions for resolving engineering problems associated with storage, processing and transmitting information, Shannon's theory concerns itself with only a small and relatively insignificant aspect of the full nature of Universal Information. This may clearly be seen from the discussion of the five levels of Universal Information. Many authors who consider only one or two levels of Universal Information do not recognize the limitations that this imposes and thereby make contradictory statements and erroneous conclusions. An important example is that it is not possible to find answers about the origin of biological systems by considering only the statistical level. Even more importantly, considering only the statistical level implicitly imposes a limitation on biological systems a priori. This a priori limitation is the claim that only chance and natural events were involved in the origin of these biological systems. But this is an ideological position based on the assumption of Materialism and not based upon science. This is one avenue by which the materialistic ideology has been and continues to be smuggled into science, namely, by assuming Materialism as the only reality.
Even treatises with impressive mathematical complexity bring no further clarity if their mathematics is restricted to the level of Shannon's theory. Well founded conclusions are only possible when the sender/receiver issue is treated systematically at all levels of Universal Information.
Empirical statements (1 through 23) formulated thus far are derived from experience. These statements have all been tested in real situations. In Chapter 5 we will use some of these empirical statements as we formulate scientific law!
Figure 9 exhibits, in hierarchal form, the five levels that make up Universal Information: statistics, cosyntics, semantics, pragmatics and apobetics. Using ES 7 and ES 20 we can make the following general observation: these five attributes as shown in Figure II, are relevant for both the sender and the receiver.
Origin of Information: ES 2 describes how Universal Information developed. First the sender has at his disposal a set of symbols (characters) that have been selected and accepted. The sender then uses one symbol after another from the set to create units of information, namely, words, sentences and other informational structures. This is not a random process but instead requires the application of intelligence. The sender has knowledge of the language that he is using and knows which sequence of symbols he needs in order to specify his meaning, expected action(s) and intended purpose(s). These steps demonstrate that the generation of Universal Information is a mental/intelligent process. Intelligence is an attribute that has never been observed in inanimate matter and as a result, we can claim that inanimate matter is incapable of generating Universal lnformation. Below we will examine in more detail this important point under the heading `The Materialist's Worldview'.
Understanding lnformation: On the receiver's side the process involves
deciphering (ES 2 and ES 4) instead of developing a message. The receiver
must know the set of symbols that has been used in the message. Using his own intelligence and his knowledge of the language, the receiver can decode the symbols, words and sentences, to understand the meaning of the message, hopefully performing the expected action(s) and thus achieving the sender's purpose(s). Generating and understanding Universal Information forms the basic scheme of all communication processes.
The Materialist's Worldview: In the most general sense within the Materialistic worldview, phenomena occur only via two types of processes (1) `chance' events (also called `random' events) or, (2) events that are ` - according to natural laws. The Nobel laureate biologist Jacques Monod exemplifies this view in his book Chance and Necessity, in which he argues that these two processes (chance and necessity) alone, or working together, serve to explain every single aspect in the universe. Let's examine each of these processes.
1.The key feature of chance/random events is that they are non-directional, i.e., without any objective or purpose. This is so by definition since a `random' event implies a lack of direction, purpose or predictability. In random events every possible outcome has an associated probability of occurring without any preferred direction or outcome.
The antithesis of `random' is `directed, guided, designed or purposeful'. When an event is random this implies that there is no way to predetermine what the outcome is going to be other than in a statistical sense. Even so, while statistical predictability may appear to violate the unpredictable (`chance') aspect of randomness, it does not. Predictions based on statistical methods are always statistically confined, meaning that they may or may not occur and are invariably constrained by the margins of uncertainty.
Mathematics then exposes chance as a non-viable candidate capable of producing results equal to those produced by Universal Information. This is because even in what may be considered a relatively `simple' situation such as the unguided assembly of a protein comprised of five hundred amino acids, the natural resources (time, space and matter) of' the entire universe would be exhausted long before the event occurred by chance.13* ln short, chance alone could never reasonably explain such events.
2) Events determined according to natural laws are also incapable of producing an intelligent outcome, primarily because the outcomes are wholly determined, i.e., there is no `choice' involved or even possible For instance, a stone that is dropped from a height cannot choose to fall, it must fall, as determined by the force of gravity. By definition, intelligence demands that choice, free choice, be both available and exercised.14*
Outside of any direction/guidance (such as that provided by the DNA/RNA system), amino acids assemble to form many different kinds of molecules, sometimes even polypeptides (but never functional ones). This is due to the fact that, unguided, amino acids under varying environmental conditions merely follow deterministic physical chemical laws. This means that a given sequence of amino acids is as equally likely to occur as any other sequence of the same length under the specified conditions. However, the formation of functional proteins requires peptide bonding of left handed amino acids in a very narrow range of sequences, a result that processes determined solely by natural laws have not been shown to be capable of producing. Chance, as we saw earlier, cannot account for the emergence of this specific sequence either.
Materialists assume that chance and deterministic processes somehow combine to produce `intelligent results' that exhibit great organized complexity, function and purpose. This has never been seen to happen, it is an ideological assumption lacking any empirical foundation. Yet they believe it because their ideology (worldview) demands it. In other words, to admit the alternative, that chance and deterministic processes are not capable of generating highly organized complexity with functional, purposeful outcomes would immediately demolish the Materialists' worldview/religion.
The discussion in this chapter is preparation for the Theory of Universal Information presented in the next chapter, in which a succinct and unambiguous definition of Universal Information will be given and its definition domain will be closely examined.
14* The etymology of intelligence expresses this concept. The word intelligence stems from two Latin words: the preposition inter, meaning between' and the verb lego. referring to `an act of choosing or selecting'. Thus, the etymology of intelligence indicates an act of `choosing between alternatives'. The layman's notion of intelligence reinforces this. We regard a person as `intelligent' when that person makes
- selects) the right choice (amongst all possible choices), selects the proper route (amongst all possible routes), selects the right answer (amongst all possible answers) and so on.
13* Proteins are formed by combinations of any of the 20 different amino acids. Thus, the total number of possible sequences having 500 amino acids is 20 raised to the exponent 500, approximately 10650 possible sequences. The chance assembly of one specific sequence (protein) is therefore I out of 10650. By any reasonable standard, the probability of this happening is essentially zero; i.e., it is impossible. Hence, chance alone cannot explain the emergence of this sequence. While functional variance of proteins exists, their number is insignificant when compared to the total number of possible sequences. To illustrate, even if in our example there were l0100 functional variants, that number may as well be zero when compared to 10650. Furthermore, this calculation is extremely conservative in that only one variable (namely, the sequence of amino acids) is considered. Other relevant variables, such as chirality, are not being considered here, It should be noted that these other variables would all make the chance formation of the specific protein even less likely.