Tag Archives: Body Plan

Casey Luskin and Stephen C. Meyer discuss the design inference

This episode of ID the Future is 17 minutes long. It’s the third in a series – here are parts one and two.

Details:

On this episode of ID the Future, Casey Luskin and Stephen Meyer finish up their talk with a discussion of why intelligent design presents the best explanation for the Cambrian explosion.

Special limited time offer: Save 43% and get 4 free digital books when you pre-order Darwin’s Doubt.

You can grab the MP3 here.

Topics:

  •  What sort of reasoning did Darwin use in The Origin of Species?
  • Can this method of “inference to the best explanation” be applied to the Cambrian explosion
  • The importance of appealing to causes that we have experienced ourselves
  • Example: explaining from an effect (volcanic ash) to a cause that his adequate (volcanic eruption)
  • We have experience of how volcanoes cause the ash, so we should infer based on what we know
  • In the case where the effect is information in biology, we see that naturalistic mechanisms are inadequate
  • But we know from our own experience that intelligent agents can generate information
  • Many people think that science must confine itself to materialistic explanations
  • If so, then it is possible miss out on the true explanation by ruling it out before looking at evidence

If you haven’t yet read Meyer’s first book, “Signature in the Cell”, you should probably grab that one. It’s the best book on intelligent design that’s out right now. It talks about the origin of the first living cell, surveying all naturalistic explanations for it, and concluding that the best explanation – the one most consistent with what we know now – is intelligent design.

Casey Luskin and Stephen C. Meyer discuss information outside the genome

This episode of ID the Future is 20 minutes long and it’s a follow up to a previous podcast I posted.

Details:

On this episode of ID the Future, hear the second part of Casey Luskin’s interview with Dr. Stephen C. Meyer, author of the forthcoming book Darwin’s Doubt: The Explosive Origin of Animal Life and the Case for Intelligent Design. Dr. Meyer discusses how the origin of information in the Cambrian explosion poses a problem for evolutionary biology.

Special limited time offer: Save 43% and get 4 free digital books when you pre-order Darwin’s Doubt.

You can grab the MP3 here.

Topics:

  • Last time, they discussed how the sudden origin of animal body plans requires an infusion of new information
  • Also, the sudden origin of animal forms is inexplicable naturalistically, because there are no transitional forms
  • New body plans require new genetic information
  • The Cambrian explosion involve a sudden increase of body plans, which means a sudden increase of information
  • For example, a new body plan requires dozens of new cell types
  • Each cell type will be composed of new proteins and enzymes
  • Proteins are composed of functional sequences of amino acids – genetic information
  • Can the neo-Darwinian mechanisms generate new functional sequences?
  • The problem with making functional sequences by chance: Product Rule
  • When calculating probabilities of forming a functional sequence, you multiply to calculate probabilities
  • A bike lock with 4 dials and 10 possibilities has 10 x 10 x 10 x 10 = 10,000 possibilities
  • Each sequence is equally likely to get by random guesses
  • But it’s far more likely that any random attempt will NOT work
  • Getting one or two settings right has no value to opening the lock, and will not be saved for later attempts
  • There is no credit for partial success: you have to get the whole combination right the first time
  • In addition, there are other sources of information other than DNA that are required for new body plans
  • For example, there is information in cell membranes, cytoskeletons, etc. which is also needed
  • Neo-Darwinism can only work on mutating genes – even in the best case it would just give you new proteins
  • Neo-Darwinism cannot add information in non-genome areas, which are required for new animal forms
  • The information in these non-genome areas are required to arrange the proteins to make new body pans
  • Genetic inofrmation = information in the genome, Epigenetic information = information outside the genome
  • This problem of information outside the genome is called “the problem of the origin of form”

So those last few points are, I think, a sneak peek into the contents of the new “Darwin’s Doubt” book.

If you haven’t yet read Meyer’s first book, “Signature in the Cell”, you should probably grab that one. It’s the best book on intelligent design that’s out right now. It talks about the origin of the first living cell, surveying all naturalistic explanations for it, and concluding that the best explanation – the one most consistent with what we know now – is intelligent design.