ID the Future Podcasting on Intelligent Design and Evolution
Topic

synthetic organic chemistry

A James Tour Course on Abiogenesis: Prologue

Today’s ID the Future features audio of the first in a series of YouTube videos by Dr. James Tour on the origin-of-life problem. Here Tour, a renowned synthetic organic chemist and professor at Rice University, explains why he is addressing the origin-of-life issue, also known as abiogenesis, and touches on some common misconceptions about the field. He says the organizing impetus for the series is a YouTube video by Dave Farina, “Elucidating the Agenda of James Tour: A Defense of Abiogenesis.” As Farina’s title suggests, he begins his video with an ad hominem attack, seeking to discredit Tour by showing that Tour is a Christian. Tour briefly responds to this line of attack and then moves into matters scientific. There Read More ›

RNA World in a World of Hurt

On this ID the Future, biophysicist Cornelius Hunter and host Eric Anderson discuss the RNA World hypothesis, an explanation for how the first self-reproducing organism might have arisen via mindless chemical processes. Hunter and Anderson have each written on the topic, and together they unpack some of the many and growing problems with this RNA-first explanation for the origin of life. They also spotlight some recent admissions in mainstream scientific publications that it’s time to move on from the cherished but embattled RNA World. The conversation pivots off of a recent essay by Hunter at Evolution News, “RNA World: Repeated Downfalls, Repeated Resurrections.” For more on the challenges of creating the first self-reproducing biological entity, see Eric Anderson’s Chapter 3 Read More ›

Chemist Marcos Eberlin on a Crisis for Chemical Evolution

On this episode of ID the Future, distinguished Brazilian organic chemist Marcos Eberlin talks about chemical evolution and the origin of life, pivoting off of comments by Rice University synthetic organic chemist James Tour in Science Uprising Episode 5, and off of Eberlin’s own Nobel laureate-endorsed book Foresight: How the Chemistry of Life Reveals Planning and Purpose. The idea of an unguided origin of the first life has been “sold to us,” he says, but its assumptions are “insane … many, many times impossible.”

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