On this ID the Future, Animal Algorithms author Eric Cassell explores an algorithm in the brains of harvester ants that adjusts their foraging strategy based on how available food is in their environment, thereby guiding the harvester ants toward more efficient foraging. Cassell builds off a March 2022 article in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface to explain how the algorithm in the ant’s tiny brain involves a sophisticated feedback control mechanism that includes both positive and negative feedback systems. As he further notes in the episode and in an article at Evolution News, a mathematical model of the harvester ants’ foraging behavior by Stanford University scientists confirms the control algorithm is largely optimized. Cassell’s recent book, Animal Algorithms, Read More ›
On this ID the Future, distinguished German paleontologist Günter Bechly continues unpacking his new argument against modern evolutionary theory. According to Bechly, contemporary species pairs diverge hardly at all over millions of years, even when isolated from each other, and yet we’re supposed to believe that the evolutionary process built dramatically distinct body plans in similar time frames at various other times in the history of life. Why believe that? He suggests this pattern of relative stasis among species pairs strikes a significant and damaging blow to Darwinian theory. In this Part 2 episode, Bechly and host Casey Luskin discuss mice/rat pairs, cattle and bison, horses and donkeys, Asian and African elephants, the Asian black bear and the South American Read More ›
On today’s ID the future, German paleoentomologist Günter Bechly and host Casey Luskin unpack a recent article of Bechly’s at Evolution News, “Species Pairs: A New Challenge to Darwinists.” There Bechly describes a challenge to evolutionary theory that thus far has been given little attention, namely “the morphological similarity of modern species pairs.” He says this “poses a severe problem for Darwinian theory “because it implies that the macroevolutionary processes that allegedly were at work and common during all periods of Earth history and in all groups of organisms, apparently were totally absent in the origins of all of the millions of living species.” Or as he puts it in a follow-up article on the same topic, “Among the 350,000 Read More ›
On today’s ID the Future, Miracle of Man author and biologist Michael Denton continues his conversation with host Eric Anderson. Here Denton does a rapid flyover of several more anthropic “coincidences” in chemistry, biochemistry, and Earth science that are fine tuned to allow air-breathing, bipedal, technology-developing terrestrial creatures like ourselves to exist and thrive. The fine tuning, what Denton calls anthropic prior fitness, would seem to require foresight and planning on literally a cosmic scale. The wide-ranging conversation, the final one in a four-part series, gives a flavor for the breadth—if not the depth and richness—of Denton’s new book from Discovery Institute Press, available here.
On today’s ID the Future, distinguished British physician and author David Galloway explains why he’s convinced that the human fetal circulatory system is irreducibly complex and therefore beyond the reach of blind gradualistic evolution to have built. In his conversation with host and fellow physician Geoffrey Simmons, Galloway also mentions some molecular machines that he’s convinced are irreducibly complex and shout intelligent design. The occasion for the conversation is Galloway’s new book, Design Dissected.
In Part 3 of The Miracle of Man interview with author Michael Denton, the Australian biologist and MD explores with host Eric Anderson some of the bioengineering marvels of the human lung and, more fundamentally, some of the many things about chemistry, the sun, and planet Earth that had to be just so to allow our respiratory and circulatory systems to work—not merely as well as they do but at all. It’s fine tuning for creatures very much like ourselves, what Denton terms The Miracle of Man. “Denton provides the a scientific underpinning for a theistic real humanism far beyond the nihilistic implications of so-called secular humanism,” writes German paleontologist Günter Bechly. “The book deserves to become a game changer Read More ›
This ID the Future continues Miracle of Man author Michael Denton’s conversation with host Eric Anderson about his latest book. The focus of this capstone work in his Privileged Species series is, as the subtitle explains, The Fine-Tuning of Nature for Human Existence. Here Denton and Anderson dive deeper into the book’s argument that science has uncovered multiple ensembles of fitness for creatures much like ourselves—land-going, airbreathing, intelligent bipeds capable of controlling fire and developing new technologies. In other words, it’s not just a handful of things about nature that appear fine tuned for our existence. It’s a long list of things, and indeed, a long list of interdependent ensembles of prior fitness—what Denton sometimes refers to as a “primal Read More ›
Today’s ID the Future brings onto the show Scottish physician David Galloway, author of the recent book Design Dissected and former president of Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. In his conversation with guest host and fellow physician/author Geoffrey Simmons, Galloway describes how he found himself in the evolution/design controversy and eventually presented his doubts about Darwin to the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow. In this first half of a two-part conversation, Galloway and Simmons briefly summarize the content of Design Dissected, and Galloway homes in on one section in particular where he tells the tragic story of Ignaz Semmelweis, a nineteenth-century Hungarian physician who pioneered life-saving antiseptic procedures in hospitals, but whose ideas were Read More ›
On today’s ID the Future, host Eric Anderson sits down with Australian biologist and MD Michael Denton to discuss his new book, The Miracle of Man: The Fine Tuning of Nature for Human Existence. As Denton notes, throughout the Middle Ages, humans were viewed as central to the cosmic scheme of things, but this anthropocentric view began to fall out of favor in the sixteenth century, and few if any scientific discoveries in the subsequent two centuries offered any apparent aid or comfort to the view. That, however, isn’t the end of the story. According to Denton, even as Charles Darwin and his theory of evolution by natural selection seemed to be draining from the idea what little life remained Read More ›
Today’s ID the Future is Part 2 of physicist Brian Miller exploring a recent report from the University of Tokyo claiming a big breakthrough in origin-of-life research. As Miller and host Eric Anderson make clear, the university’s laboratory work on RNA, detailed in a recent Nature Communications article, involved the intelligent interference of the lab scientists and, despite this intelligent interference, the devolution of RNA rather than the evolution of increasing RNA sophistication. Miller says that it’s ironic that Steven Novella, a scientist committed to puncturing science hype, seems to have fallen for the hype surrounding this laboratory work. Miller and Anderson go on to discuss critiques of origin-of-life tall-tale claims, critiques coming Robert Shapiro, James Tour, and others. Life, Read More ›