1. Standard memberBosse de Nage
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    09 Feb '09 14:22
    "On the eve of the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of On The Origin of Species, New Humanist editor Caspar Melville asked a selection of scientific commentators what they'd like to say to Darwin around the supper table."
    http://www.eurozine.com/articles/2009-01-30-coyne-en.html

    What questions would you ask?
  2. Standard memberThequ1ck
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    09 Feb '09 15:341 edit
    Another Dodo drumstick Darwin old bean?

    Seriously though I'd ask him what he had to say on silicon lifeforms.
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    09 Feb '09 16:102 edits
    Originally posted by Thequ1ck
    Another Dodo drumstick Darwin old bean?

    Seriously though I'd ask him what he had to say on silicon lifeforms.
    ….Seriously though I'd ask him what he had to say on silicon lifeforms.
    ..…


    I would guess probably not a lot -I am not sure but I don’t think they really understood back then that Earth’s life is “carbon-based” because their basic understanding of biochemistry was rather limited back then?
    Although I am not sure exactly when in history it was first realised that Earth’s life is “carbon-based” so I could be wrong.

    Besides, this isn’t really a question of evolution but rather what alternative basic building blocks of life could there have been when life first started -unless you are talking about the possibility of carbon-based life forms evolving into silicon-based life forms!?
  4. Standard memberThequ1ck
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    09 Feb '09 17:00
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton

    unless you are talking about the possibility of carbon-based life forms evolving into silicon-based life forms!?[/b]
    Precisely.
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    09 Feb '09 17:11
    Originally posted by Bosse de Nage
    What questions would you ask?
    I would ask him if he got the grand idea of his from somewhere, if so from where, from whom?
    ...or if he idiscovered the evolution from scratch.
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    09 Feb '09 18:35
    Originally posted by FabianFnas
    I would ask him if he got the grand idea of his from somewhere, if so from where, from whom?
    ...or if he idiscovered the evolution from scratch.
    Get yourself on a Ryan Air flight to London and find out. The Natural History museum has it there for you.
    Regarding originality - indeed it was his idea (came from his studies following the Beagle voyage about 183o-somthing, you know Galapogos Islands etc). In fact he held onto the idea through fear of a religious backlash. Only when a friend in the field came up with the same notion did he publish in 1859. He got a caning for it.
    The idea itself evolved(!) from anatomical studies of living creatures. The fossil record helped only a little as it could not demonstrate a clear link between species. I wonder if London Zoo had a duck-billed platterpus at the time?

    If I had him over for dinner I'd ask him to read George Orwell's 1984 and give his appraisal.
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    09 Feb '09 19:42
    Originally posted by Thequ1ck
    Precisely.
    Well -I have no idea of what Darwin would have thought of this if this issue was explained to him.
    But I have formed my own theory about this:

    It is simply that once a life form has emerged then it is extremely difficult to the point of being almost impossible for it to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks that make it although NOT necessarily difficult for evolution to add new kinds basic chemical building blocks to the ones that are already there.

    -and the bases of this theory? -simple; if is WAS easy for life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then, given the huge diversity of life that has evolved from a common ancestor on Earth, it would be remarkable that non of them as far a we can observe has a fundamental different set of the basic chemical building blocks despite each one evolving in its own way. For example, we don’t see any silicon-based life forms on Earth. Thus I assume purely on this basis that it must be very difficult for, say, a carbon-based life form to evolve into a silicon-based life form.
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    09 Feb '09 20:32
    Originally posted by EdGriffin
    Get yourself on a Ryan Air flight to London and find out. The Natural History museum has it there for you.
    Regarding originality - indeed it was his idea (came from his studies following the Beagle voyage about 183o-somthing, you know Galapogos Islands etc). In fact he held onto the idea through fear of a religious backlash. Only when a friend in the fie ...[text shortened]...
    If I had him over for dinner I'd ask him to read George Orwell's 1984 and give his appraisal.
    Yes, of course, I know all that. But I also know that the idea of evolution from one specie into another was presented of people before Darwin.

    My question to Mr Darwin was if he knew about these ideas of others when he developed his own idea, or if his idea of evolution was his own original idea, despite others has came up with similar ideas before him, him unknowingly?
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    10 Feb '09 05:04
    I would ask him if his family being inbred had any influence in his belief in evolution. I would also ask him if he felt his inbred family was superior because of the inbreeding and ask him how he felt about eugenics since his relative was considered to be the father of the eugenics movement.
  10. Standard memberThequ1ck
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    10 Feb '09 09:241 edit
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    Well -I have no idea of what Darwin would have thought of this if this issue was explained to him.
    But I have formed my own theory about this:

    It is simply that once a life form has emerged then it is extremely difficult to the point of being almost impossible for it to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks that make it although NO ...[text shortened]... t be very difficult for, say, a carbon-based life form to evolve into a silicon-based life form.
    Who says that in order for a new species to evolve the older species must
    die out?

    A logical alien entity may, upon stumbling across a more advanced version
    of our spacecraft view it as the intelligence and humans merely as the
    mechanism.
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    10 Feb '09 14:09
    Originally posted by Thequ1ck
    Who says that in order for a new species to evolve the older species must
    die out?

    A logical alien entity may, upon stumbling across a more advanced version
    of our spacecraft view it as the intelligence and humans merely as the
    mechanism.
    ….Who says that in order for a new species to evolve the older species must
    die out?
    ..…


    What gave you the idea that I said or implied this?
    You must have somehow misread what I said.
    Perhaps you misinterpreted:

    “…if is WAS easy for life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then…”

    As meaning:

    “…if is WAS easy for ALL life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then…”

    ?

    I wasn’t saying that in order for a new species to evolve the older species must die out and nor would I believe this.
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    10 Feb '09 14:395 edits
    Originally posted by Metal Brain
    I would ask him if his family being inbred had any influence in his belief in evolution. I would also ask him if he felt his inbred family was superior because of the inbreeding and ask him how he felt about eugenics since his relative was considered to be the father of the eugenics movement.
    ….I would ask him if his family being inbred had any influence in his belief in evolution.
    ..…


    I don’t remember where but I clearly remember that I heard that he had a suspicion that the inbreeding within his family left his family weak and prone to dieing of disease and his suspicions of this grow very strong when his daughter ( which he loved very much ) died of what was probably TB. So I am pretty sure that he thought that inbreeding was a bad thing -at least for humans.

    By the way, the issue of inbreeding had very little if not absolutely nothing to do with his ideas of evolution.

    ….I would also ask him if he felt his inbred family was superior because of the inbreeding and ask him how he felt about eugenics since his relative was considered to be the father of the eugenics movement
    ..…


    Judging from what he had written, he would have rejected eugenics or at the very least its most extreme form that the form of it that the nazis took which supported the mass extermination of so called “inferior” people.

    Of course, the nazis massively warped and distorted the interpretation of the theory of evolution in order to justify there hateful racist ideology thus they totally misrepresented what the theorem is all about. The scientific theory of evolution neither says nor implies anything about how we should behave and anyone who thinks it does (such as the nazis) is logically wrong and haven’t understood his theory.
    No doubt lots of Darwin’s quotes can be taken out of context and dressed up to make it look and sound like it supports eugenics but the fact remains that Darwin probably would have been horrified with at least what the most extreme form eugenics supports which is that the “least fit” humans in our society should be exterminated.
  13. Standard memberThequ1ck
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    12 Feb '09 13:21
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    [b]….Who says that in order for a new species to evolve the older species must
    die out?
    ..…


    What gave you the idea that I said or implied this?
    You must have somehow misread what I said.
    Perhaps you misinterpreted:

    “…if is WAS easy for life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then…”

    As meaning:

    “…if is WAS ...[text shortened]... n order for a new species to evolve the older species must die out and nor would I believe this.[/b]
    Then maybe REPLACE isn't the right word. CREATE would be more appropriate
    as REPLACE implies something is removed.
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    12 Feb '09 20:34
    Originally posted by Andrew Hamilton
    [b]….I would ask him if his family being inbred had any influence in his belief in evolution.
    ..…


    I don’t remember where but I clearly remember that I heard that he had a suspicion that the inbreeding within his family left his family weak and prone to dieing of disease and his suspicions of this grow very strong when his daughter ( which he ...[text shortened]... rm eugenics supports which is that the “least fit” humans in our society should be exterminated.[/b]
    Sir Francis Galton was known as the father of the Eugenics movement and he was Charles Darwin's cousin. That is the only reason I brought it up.

    http://iml.jou.ufl.edu/projects/Spring02/Holland/Galton.htm

    http://bristowefamilies.com/DarwinTree-med.html

    America had it's own eugenics movement as well. I think it took place before the Nazis.

    http://www.eugenicsarchive.org/eugenics/list3.pl

    Here is a you tube clip of the American eugenics propaganda film called "Tomorrow's Children". It promoted the forced sterilization of people. it was not just the Nazis that were extreme.

    YouTube

    Here is an interesting article about inbreeding using the Rothschild family as an example.

    http://discovermagazine.com/2003/aug/featkiss

    Here is another saying that first cousin marriages should be legal. it gives the numbers of increased infant mortality and defects.

    http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/12/081222221535.htm

    What do you think?
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    12 Feb '09 20:37
    Originally posted by Thequ1ck
    Then maybe REPLACE isn't the right word. CREATE would be more appropriate
    as REPLACE implies something is removed.
    But what I was meaning to talk about was a particular species of a carbon-based life form evolving into a silicon-based life form by REPLACING ALL the carbon-based chemical building blocks that make it with silicon-based chemical building blocks. That’s why I used the word “replace” and not “create”.
    But what I was NOT trying to imply here is the possibility of ALL the carbon-based life forms ( i.e. ALL the different species ) evolving into silicon-based life forms nor was I implying the possibility of a species of silicon-based life form replacing all carbon-based life forms.

    To clarify, instead of just saying:

    “…if is WAS easy for life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then…”

    I should have made this clear by saying:

    “…if is WAS easy for a particular species life to evolve to REPLACE the basic chemical building blocks then…”

    -my apologies for my lack of clarity.
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