On today’s ID the Future Darwin Devolves author and biologist Michael Behe discusses two recent technical papers that the news media billed as dramatic evidence for evolution. As Behe explains in his conversation with host Eric Anderson, a careful look at the papers themselves shows that both cases involve devolution. That is, the biological forms in question did not evolve novel structures and information; instead they threw away things to achieve a niche advantage. In the first study, in the journal Nature Microbiology, the researchers found that in Africa, where “most rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) for falciparum malaria recognize histidine-rich protein 2 antigen,” the malaria parasite has repeatedly evolved a way to sometimes elude detection, giving it a selective advantage, Read More ›
Today’s ID the Future again spotlights The Comprehensive Guide to Science and Faith. Historian Richard Weikart and host Casey Luskin discuss Weikart’s contribution to the new anthology, his essay “How Evil Has Been Done in the Name of Science.” As Weikart explains, over the past century and a half, science has been misused to fuel racist policies and undermine human rights. Darwinian ideas helped lay the groundwork for Nazi ideology in Germany. And we shouldn’t imagine the problem was restricted to Nazi Germany. Scientific racism also reared its head in the United States, including in the long-running and infamous Tuskegee syphilis experiment. More broadly, a marriage of scientism and evolutionary thinking continues to undermine the idea of inherent human worth Read More ›
On this classic episode of ID the Future, guest host Ira Berkowitz interviews Rabbi Moshe Averick, author of Nonsense of a High Order: The Confused World of Modern Atheism, about Stephen Hawking’s comments on God and religion in Hawking’s posthumously published Brief Answers to the Big Questions. Averick describes the work as “superficial,” “convenient” and marked by “a glaring lack of profundity.” Or as the rabbi puts it, “If he did physics that way his university would have fired him.” Listen in to hear why Averick has such a problem with the book.
Today’s ID the Future again spotlights the new book Animal Algorithms: Evolution and the Mysterious Origin of Ingenious Instincts. Host and Baylor University computer engineering professor Robert J. Marks talks with Animal Algorithms author Eric Cassell about the sophisticated algorithms that appear to be embedded in the brains of colony insects, granting them impressive instinctive abilities. Could these complex programmed behaviors have evolved through a blind Darwinian process? Cassell and Marks discuss the challenges to that idea, beginning with the fact that in our ordinary experience, when random changes are made to a computer algorithm, it inevitably degrades function rather than enhancing it. Digging deeper, they discuss the No Free Lunch theorems of William Macready and David Wolpert, and the problem Read More ›
On this ID the Future Stephen Meyer sits down with talk show host and bestselling novelist Andrew Klavan to discuss Meyer’s Return of the God Hypothesis. In this fast-paced conversation the pair touch on the Judeo-Christian roots of science, how fine tuning in physics and cosmology point to intelligent design, and how a great many scientists held out hope that the universe was eternal and therefore did not require a creator, but eventually threw in the towel as evidence mounted for a cosmic beginning. What about the multiverse hypothesis as an escape for atheists wishing to explain away the evidence for a cosmic designer? Meyer explains why it fails Occam’s Razor, and then he and Klavan discuss a noted atheist Read More ›
On this ID the Future from the vault, Casey Luskin finishes up his look at Francis Collins’s and Karl Giberson’s The Language of Science and Faith, a book arguing for theistic Darwinism. In this sixth and final installment in the series, Luskin reviews the contradictions and fallacious bandwagon appeals that he says permeate the book. He praises the two authors for their intelligence and professional achievements, but he encourages readers of the book to also read one or more works skeptical of theistic Darwinism in order to better assess how Giberson and Collins’s case holds up when pressed. Head over to Discovery Institute Press for some good options.
On today’s ID the Future, Animal Algorithms author Eric Cassell delves into another fascinating portion of his new book, the programmed social behaviors of colony insects and the challenge these instinctive behaviors pose for modern evolutionary theory. Cassell and host Robert J. Marks discuss the complex caste system of these colonies, the impressive signaling systems they use to communicate, and how technologists study these tiny-brained creatures to learn tricks for developing and improving drone swarm technology. How could a mindless evolutionary process have evolved these sophisticated colonies, where various castes appear essential to the functioning and survival of the colony, and possess their division-of-labor skills instinctively? Some colony members also behave altruistically, a fact that Charles Darwin himself conceded posed Read More ›
On today’s ID the Future astrobiologist Guillermo Gonzalez and host Casey Luskin discuss the idea of undirected panspermia. Gonzalez explains the basic idea and what the best current evidence says about its plausibility. The occasion is his chapter on panspermia in the new anthology A Comprehensive Guide to Science and Faith, co-edited by Casey Luskin, associate director of Discovery Institute’s Center for Science and Culture. Undirected panspermia is the idea that the first life on our planet came from outer space, carried by chance processes from a faraway living planet on space dust, asteroids, or comets either from within our solar system, or from another star system to here. The idea of panspermia was inspired by the extreme difficulty of Read More ›
On this ID the Future from the vault, Casey Luskin highlights a glaring logical error in the pro-evolution book The Language of Science and Faith by Francis Collins and Karl Giberson. There Collins and Giberson assert that macroevolution is merely microevolution over long ages, and to cinch their argument they point to the observed macroevolution of … birds? No. Whales? No. A new land mammal? A fundamentally new type of bacteria? No again, and understandably so since no one has observed the macroevolution of any biological form. The idea is conjectural. So what example do Collins and Giberson offer? The evolution of automobiles from the Model T to the Toyota Prius hybrid. But as Luskin notes, such an evolutionary path illustrates Read More ›
Today’s ID the Future spotlights the new book Animal Algorithms: Evolution and the Mysterious Origin of Ingenious Instincts. The author, Eric Cassell, joins host and Baylor computer engineering professor Robert J. Marks to discuss the groundbreaking book and, in particular, the chapters on some of the animal kingdom’s most stunning navigators—the arctic tern, homing pigeons, the monarch butterfly, and the desert ant, among others. Cassell has degrees in biology and engineering, and he draws on these and his decades of professional expertise in aircraft navigation systems to show that these creatures instinctively employ navigational technologies that humans have only recently mastered. According to Cassell, their skills are driven by sophisticated algorithms embedded in their brains. But what created these algorithms Read More ›