ID the Future Intelligent Design, Evolution, and Science Podcast
Category

Physics and Cosmology

Big Bang

Physicist Brian Miller Answers the Big Bang Evaders

On this ID the Future, physicist Brian Miller looks at various attempts to evade the mounting evidence that the universe had a beginning, a Big Bang. Miller and host Casey Luskin first review the fascinating history of how the eternal universe model of the nineteenth century gave way to the Big Bang model. Then Miller walks through about a half a dozen attempts to evade a cosmic beginning after the Big Bang model had won the day. These evasions include the steady state model, the idea of an eternal cyclical universe, and the string landscape model. According to this model, our universe exists in a multi-dimensional brane (not “brain”) which exists in a higher dimensional space, and our multi-dimensional brane Read More ›

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Bijan Nemati on What the James Webb Telescope May Discover

Today’s ID the Future explores with physicist and space telescope expert Bijan Nemati the amazing discoveries that may await us when the singularly powerful James Webb space telescope goes on line in summer 2022. Nemati and host Jay Richards, co-author of The Privileged Planet, discuss the telescope’s ability to see far deeper into space than any previous telescope, and further into the past. If all goes well it will be able to see so far into the past, Nemati says, that we will get glimpses of the universe close to when galaxies were first forming, not long after the Big Bang. These glimpses may confirm our most current ideas of early cosmic history and galaxy formation, or turn them on Read More ›

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A Webb Telescope Tour with Space Telescope Expert Bijan Nemati

On today’s ID the Future, physicist Bijan Nemati, an expert in advanced astronomical instruments, discusses the new James Webb space telescope with host Jay Richards. The NASA telescope has been successfully launched into space and has reached its destination, known as the Lagrange Point 2, roughly a million miles from Earth. If all goes well with the extremely delicate multi-phase deployment, the Webb telescope will go online in late spring or early summer 2022 and begin sending back stunning images. In this first of two episodes, Nemati describes the remaining steps in the telescope’s deployment, some of the extraordinary technology involved, and the telescope’s amazing powers, including its ability to see into the far infrared regions of the electromagnetic spectrum, and Read More ›

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Neck of violin with pegbox and scrool, on music sheet.

How Finely Tuned Is Our Universe?

On this ID the Future, Baylor University computer engineering professor Robert J. Marks hosts Ola Hössjer of Stockholm University and Daniel Díaz of the University of Miami to discuss a recent research paper the three contributed to the Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics, “Is Cosmological Tuning Fine or Coarse?” It turns out that’s no easy question to answer rigorously, but this is where the new paper comes in. In this episode the three unpack the long answer. What about the short answer? It’s akin to a description in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy: “Space,” it informs us, “is big. Really big.” Measuring how finely tuned our universe is for life is all about searching large spaces of possibilities; Read More ›

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Cornelius Hunter: Determinism is Bizarre and Self-Defeating

On this ID the Future Cornelius Hunter continues discussing determinism, which he describes as a “bizarre position” held “with great confidence” by scientists such as the German physicist Sabine Hossenfelder. It’s bizarre, says Hunter, because if it’s true, then the universe’s initial conditions and the laws of nature produced the particular works of Beethoven and Shakespeare willy nilly. If it’s true, then all one says or thinks — right or wrong, true or false — was determined some 13.8 billion years ago. But if that’s the case, then there are no reasonable grounds for concluding that one’s belief in determinism is true. And like David Hume’s argument against miracles, determinism makes a false dichotomy between natural law and free will. Read More ›

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Cornelius Hunter on the Determinedly Determinist

On this ID the Future Cornelius Hunter discusses the controversy over determinism and free will. Joined by host Michael Keas, Dr. Hunter, a specialist in biophysics and computational biology, takes listeners all the way back to Aristotle, then to Newton, then to Pierre-Simon Laplace, who theorized that a sufficient computation could determine the future based on just the universe’s initial conditions and the laws of nature. Laplace was a physical determinist, in other words, one who holds that the laws of nature determine everything. That includes human choices, which determinists today, such as German theoretical physicist Sabine Hossenfelder, take to be merely an illusory experience. But it’s “an irrational rejection of evidence” on their part, Hunter argues; evidenced by how Read More ›

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Exoplanet in deep space

Cosmos: Possible Worlds and the Copernican Demotion Myth

On this episode of ID the Future, host Jay Richards interviews historian of science Michael Keas about a new documentary claiming that Copernicus’s heliocentric model of the solar system “demoted” humans from the place of honor at the center of everything. Neil deGrasse Tyson champions this persistent myth in episode 8 of the new National Geographic series Cosmos: Possible Worlds. The reality is quite different. As Keas explains, in Copernicus’s day, the Earth was thought to be at the bottom of the universe, the “sump” where all the filth collected, while the starry heavens were considered the place of honor. Keas and Richards trace the history of the demotion myth and discuss how Copernicus, Kepler, and other luminaries of the Read More ›

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Green blue abstract exoplanet outer space vibrant sea. Waves, splashes and drops of water paint. Mysterious esoteric depths of the galactic ocean

Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay Richards on Science Sensationalism

On this episode of ID the Future, philosopher Jay Richards and astrobiologist Guillermo Gonzalez, co-authors of The Privileged Planet: How Our Place in the Cosmos is Designed for Discovery, discuss reports on another extra-solar planet recently in the news. Read More ›
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Fractal multiverse - astract illustration for topics such as physics and astronomy

The Modern-Day Phlogiston: Darwinism Explains Everything and Nothing

On this episode of ID the Future, Andrew McDiarmid reads an excerpt from Heretic: One Scientist’s Journey from Darwin to Design by Finnish bioengineer Matti Leisola and Jonathan Witt. It makes the case that modern neo-Darwinism is today’s “phlogiston,” a theory that explains everything but nothing, faces mounting contrary evidence, and survives only with ever more ancillary hypotheses. In the excerpt Leisola and Witt also discuss the well-documented pattern of scientists defending an existing scientific paradigm even after fresh discoveries have turned against it, with the obsolete dominant paradigm dying only very slowly. An especially dramatic and tragic example gave the name to this all-too-human tendency — the Semmelweis reflex. Listen in to learn more.

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Distant planet system in space with exoplanets 3D rendering elements of this image furnished by NASA

Bijan Nemati on Finding Another Earth

On this episode of ID the Future, Bijan Nemati, formerly of CalTech’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and now at the University of Alabama, Huntsville, tells what science is learning about how hard it is to find a planet like Earth. Anywhere. The more we learn about the conditions necessary for a planet to host life, the more we see we may need to search at least tens of thousands of Milky Way galaxies to expect to find another one — at least if it all depends on blind luck. This talk is part of bonus material included with the new, thought-provoking series Science Uprising.