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The State of Science: Was Kansas Intelligently Designed?

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We’ll probably never know for sure, but I’m pretty certain that the evolution v. intelligent design debate will rage on.

Blogcritics is keeping you up to date on the latest happenings with the attempts to alter Kansas’ science education curriculum in the name of … well … they say it’s “objectivity.”

Diluting Evolution
The Bible, which has not been updated in over 2000 years, is most decidedly not a science book. Charles Darwin’s controversial 1859 bestseller, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the…
Posted to Culture by Margaret Romao Toigo on May 12, 2005 09:59 AM

Intelligent Design Proponents Attempt Experimental Science
Intelligent Design theorists attempt to mate humans and chimpanzees, hoping to show that none of the women will become impregnated, thus refuting Darwinism. Satire.
Posted to Culture by a-[e] on May 11, 2005 07:51 PM

Why Bother with Kansas
The real issue for these people is their belief that evolutionary theory undercuts religious faith. Does it? For some it probably does though knowledge of evolution isn’t required for either atheism or agnosticism. In fact, evolution alone isn’t even a good argument for disbelief since the question of God is entirely a metaphysical question.
Posted by a-[e] on May 10, 2005 12:39 PM

‘Intelligent Design’ in Kansas: The Right’s Attack on Families
There is a deep irony in the attempt to excise evolution from the science curriculum, just as there is in the move to allow prayer in schools or to have the Ten Commandments posted in classrooms. The very groups that advocate so-called “proper” parenting seem to want to cede parental responsibility to the state, turning Uncle Sam into a surrogate father.
Posted to Culture by Pete Blackwell on May 09, 2005 08:06 PM

Kansas school board endlessly debates evolution
A Kansas high school student weighs in. “When you’re having a scientific debate, a ‘balanced picture’ is not based on a referendum of the opinions of the general populace. It’s not based on the opinions of church leaders. Science is not decided by referendum, it’s decided by scientists, and to try and make it into a public referendum issue is idiotic and medieval.”
Posted to Politics by Leoniceno on May 06, 2005 07:39 PM

Kansas Board of Education Much Less Evolved Than Previously Thought, Says Researcher
“In fact, some of these people have actually devolved during the 80 years since the Scopes ‘Monkey’ trial,” says Bill Thornton, chief DNA specialist with the National School Board Evolution Analysis Project.
Posted to Culture by Robert Brady on May 5, 2005 09:36 PM

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About bhw

  • ResearcherTony –
    One of the cool things about the Dead Sea Scrolls is that a copy of the Book of Isaiah was found – 1000 years older than any previous copy. And it said the same thing as other copies.

    I don’t think that is “revised and re-edited” but is such extreme care for accuracy of the text that, in this case, it’s integrity was retained for over 1000 years.

  • The Kansas school board’s hearings on evolution weren’t limited to how the theory should be taught in public schools. The board is considering redefining science itself. Advocates of “intelligent design” are pushing the board to reject a definition limiting science to natural explanations for what’s observed in the world.

    Instead, they want to define it as “a systematic method of continuing investigation,” without specifying what kind of answer is being sought. The definition would appear in the introduction to the state’s science standards.

    State and national science groups boycotted last week’s public hearings, claiming they were rigged against evolution.

    Stephen Meyer, a senior fellow at the Seattle-based Discovery Institute, which supports intelligent design, said changing the schools’ definition of science would avoid freezing out questions about how life arose and developed on Earth.

    The current definition is “not innocuous,” Meyer said. “It’s not neutral. It’s actually taking sides.”

    Last year, the board asked a committee of educators to draft recommendations for updating the standards, then accepted two rival proposals.

  • Shark

    I wanna know ONE THING:

    Who left Tony’s cell door open, and why do they have internet access at Bedlam Asylum?

    PS: Yet another useful link for Tony.

  • The definition of science itself is now under attack in Kansas, and this may be part of a new national tactic.

    As the Associated Press reports, “The proposed definition has outraged many scientists, who are frustrated that students could be discussing supernatural explanations for natural phenomena in their science classes.”

    Full story at http://tinyurl.com/9zywc

  • Tristan

    but all 30 different translated phrases are the “Infallible Word of GOD”, right …!!!!!

    or should I say Baaaaaaaaaa………..!

    sheep prefer to be left alone in their ignorance.

  • Comment 21 posted by Tristan on May 15, 2005 10:54 AM:

    “For any individuals not hypnotized by the many, many re-edited and revised editions of the so-called “infallible word of god”,
    (now which words of god ARE the real ones–if the bible has been revised and re-edited some 1,500 times–and the wording has been totally DIFFERENT—they can’t be ALL right when they are all different and OPPOSING now CAN THEY !!!!)”

    30+ bibles + all the same!!!
    If you drag and highlight all the bibles in the box. Then type 1 scriptural verse. You get 30 *** translations *** to compare. Bammm. There goes your fictitious theories about the bible. Hic! hic! hic!

  • Say, there’s a few more articles you could add to this, like Fred’s evolution book review, and my article ‘The 5 People You Meet at Religious Conferences’

  • Bennett

    “Its an odd kind of intelligence indeed that sends asteroids crashing into planets just to tweak the direction of evolution — or leaves red-herring evidence of such an event to misguide the logical thinkers of that planet into believing that such a thing happened.”

    Great paragraph Fred!

    And from Tristan… Nice!

    “as even the “bible” has in it that “god’s laws are written in our heart”–therefore making an “intermediary” totally unneccessary….”

  • Tristan

    Blinded by the bible ..????

    For any individuals not hypnotized by the many, many re-edited and revised editions of the so-called “infallible word of god”,
    (now which words of god ARE the real ones–if the bible has been revised and re-edited some 1,500 times–and the wording has been totally DIFFERENT—they can’t be ALL right when they are all different and OPPOSING now CAN THEY !!!!)—
    The original biblical manuscrips were in Greek and Aramaic—since then the actual content has been so bastardized and totally changed—none of the original writers would recognize anything in our current “editions” of the bible.

    For honest thinking humans that do NOT rely on believing blindly what they are told by “god’s representatives on earth”–ie.: priests, ministers, etc., (and THIS always makes me skeptical as even the “bible” has in it that “god’s laws are written in our heart”–therefore making an “intermediary” totally unneccessary….

    go find any of Zechariah Sitchican’s books on how our planet REALLY was populated and developed and then you can see the absurdity and fairy tale of this biblical “creation” MYTH.
    The 1st book in the series of about 12 books is called The 12th Planet; these books are taken from Dr. Sitchican’s translations of the thousands of Sumerian tablets that are our oldest written record in the earth.
    You will be amazed and enlightened by the truths you will find here in Dr. Sitchikan’s works he has spent the last 35 years translatiing.
    You will get that “Oh YES—that MUST be what really happened” feeling as you read his works.
    These fairy tale myths that are in these many distorted versions of the bible will make complete sense in light of what you will discover in these ancient Sumerian tablets!!!!

  • On one hand, we have people who believe that the future of the Universe belongs to robots that will go beyond self-replication to intelligent self-evolution. Should we call that “Artificially Intelligent Design”? Will it lead to speciation and an ecology of machines. Will species compete for resources and will humans still be considered a worthy species in that future universe? Star Wars here we come!

    On the other hand, we have people who believe that the naturally explicable process of evolution requires supernatural control. And they believe in that so strongly that they call their unchallengeable hypothesis scientific nonetheless. They consider it implausible that Earth’s ecology could be the result of natural events that are not entirely predictable.

    The chances of our particular world are improbably remote, they say, so there must be a capital-C Creator. The chances of any partiicular world are improbably remote, I counter, and the world we live in is no less unlikely than any other.

    Its an odd kind of intelligence indeed that sends asteroids crashing into planets just to tweak the direction of evolution — or leaves red-herring evidence of such an event to misguide the logical thinkers of that planet into believing that such a thing happened.

    I live between the worlds of those whose belief in limitless technology will lead us where?, and those whose faith in an omniscient, omnipotent Creator leaves no room for nonbelievers.

    God, or whatever force for good may exist in this universe, help us!

    Fred Bortz, whose writings include books for young readers on Artificial Intelligence, cosmic collisions, life on other worlds, and what it means to be a scientist.

  • MDE

    re: “Once you except the FACT that you are but a molecular machine. Then the debate makes no sense. The logic is simple. Machines are made, designed, created.”

    Quite correct: the logic is simple – simply circular.


  • Eric Olsen

    Researcher Tony, please do NOT, for the ret of your life, put unlinked URLs on this site. Thanks

  • DNA is the cellular material that contains all of the programming that controls the growth, development, and behavior of living cells


    You have been digitially recorded on a pro-grammed mol-ecule,

    You have been Reduced, -duced, -duced, -duced, too information and a software com-mand,

    Oh man, oh man, oh mannnnn. OH YEAAAAAAAAA.

    “Life” is the Greatest Technology Man has ever seen!

    It really comes down to:

    the “Blind Evolution with lucky selections”


    the “DNA bio-engineering software programming for limited changes”.

    Nothing as good as to be called “alive” is a produce of luck. Living systems are the best molecular TECHNOLOGY we have ever seen.

    Once you except the FACT that you are but a molecular machine. Then the debate makes no sense. The logic is simple. Machines are made, designed, created.

    All life is MADE from scratch. There does not exist even one life form that was not constructed with the aid from DNA intelligent instructions. It starts with the DNA programming coded instructions. And a cell with the machine SHOP the put the parts together. Change the instructions, and you change the design specs.


    A pre-programmed cell is your Creator!!!

  • Programmable Cells: Engineer Turns Bacteria Into Living Computers

    In previous work, including a paper published March 8 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences along with Sara Hooshangi and Stephan Thiberge, Weiss showed the feasibility of inserting engineered pieces of DNA into cells to make them behave in the same manner as digital circuits. The cells, for example, could be made to perform basic mathematical logic and produce crisp, reliable readouts that are more commonly associated with silicon chips than biological organisms. The new paper applies similar techniques to a large population of cells.

    “Here we’re showing an integrated package where the cells have an ability to send messages and other cells have the ability to act on these messages,” said Weiss.


  • ResearcherTony

    Ooops. That’s:
    10 (to the power of) 20 operations per second.

    100,000,000,000,000,000,000 operations per second.

  • ResearcherTony

    An amoeba may consist of about 100 quadrillion atoms. And can create a copy in about 90 seconds (if I remember right)

    Human cells can create a copy in almost 2 hours.

    So fast computations are need, for it would die of old age before it could create a copy.

    So far I have 3 estates of the speed that can be expected from a cell. All are faster then any man made computer.


    100 quadrillion atoms in 90 sec.
    1020 operations per second.
    1000 Gbits/sec. X 100 trillion cells

  • Living colour Message 53 of 67 in Discussion

    DNA Computing & Chips
    Nature has, through a process of continuous optimization, developed systems that are highly energy efficient. Man being a part of nature, has not far to see the power of nature?s creation. His own body is a masterpiece.

    Our search for knowledge has driven the information revolution. ?Powerful? database and feedback systems have only recently been developed. Yet, within us exist hormones and enzymes which provide to a master processor (the brain) with information about the internal and external environment. The information is processed in the brain and signals sent to take appropriate actions. These form simple feedback systems. In nature, such controls exist at every level. Even the smallest of cells has a nucleus which controls the cell. Where does this power actually come from? It lies in the DNA. The ability to harness this computational power shall determine the fate of next generation of computing.

    Molecular biologists are beginning to unravel the information-processing tools-such as enzymes, copying tools, proofreading mechanisms and so on-that evolution has spent millions of years refining.

    Now we’re taking those tools in large numbers of DNA molecules and using them as biological computer processors.

    Information specifying a computational problem too complex for even a supercomputer is encoded in DNA.

    Then various molecular-biological tools are used to process this information. In a hot-tub sized vat of DNA, at normal laboratory concentration, one might easily imagine having 1021 DNA molecules, each potentially encoding 400 bits of information. That’s 100,000 billion times as much information as you can store in your 1 gigabyte hard disk.

    Each of these molecules acts, in a sense, as a separate processor in a giant multiprocessor. So, in effect, we have a thousand billion billion processors.

    When compared to conventional computers, certain operations in DNA computing (for example, hybridization?the bonding of two DNA strands to form the double helix) are over a billion times more energy efficient.

    Also, DNA stores information at a density of about one bit per nm3?about a trillion times as efficiently as videotape.

    DNA computing is also massively parallel and can reach approximately 1020 operations per second compared to today?s teraflop supercomputers.

    DNA computation relies on devising algorithms that solve problems using the encoded information in the sequence of nucleotides that make up DNA?s double helix?the bases Adenine, Guanine, Thymine, and Cytosine (A, G, T, and C, respectively)?and then breaking and making new bonds between them to reach the answer.

  • God: all-powerful all-knowing creator
    Creator: One who creates, who brings into existence

    Because Man is not the one that is all supreme… he is not called a God. Though some try. = 😉
    Is man Learning, is that not greater power.
    Is not man becoming a knowing CREATOR.
    Bio-engineering is all about intelligent Designing. So is DNA programming. They now have software to help make it easy.

    Man always was, and more so now, a great Intelligent Creator / copyist.

    Scientists make bacteria behave like computers
    Research could lead to smart biological devices

    Bacteria have been programmed to behave like computers, assembling themselves into complex shapes based on instructions stuffed into their genes.

  • Tony, not laughing so much at your links, but rather the presentation and the labeling of man is Intelligent Designer behind it.

    I know you’re posting a lot of links, but the real picture I’m getting is Gene Wilder throwing his head back amidst lightening and screaming ‘It’s alive!’

    If man intelligently designs life, that does NOT make man an Intelligent Designer, i.e. God. Creating life is not the definition of a God.

  • DNA Computing – By Gaurav Gupta, Nipun Mehra & Shumpa Chakraverty.

    So after 10 iterations, the DNA is being replicated at a rate of about 1Mbit/sec; after 30 iterations it increases to 1000 Gbits/sec. This is beyond the sustained data rates of the fastest hard drives.

    WD Rapter 74 GB – 10,000RPM Hard Drive

    Transfer Rates
    Buffer To Host (Serial ATA) 1,200 Mbits/s (Max)
    Buffer To Disk 72 MB/s (Sustained)
    Living systems are so good at logic computations. Your next computer many be a bacterium glued to a motherboard, run on man made software. Billy boy, are you listening. Nature is calling you. Can you hear them crying out too you. Yea man. MSN bio-programming.

    Don’t laugh. I have links… Hehehe

  • Bennett

    “desperate need of a hard restart”

    YOU da man!

  • and the eyeballs would be ‘browsers’?

    thank you, I’ll be here all week.

  • if we were to consider the theory that the biological functions in man were the equivalent of a computer, then we should also put forth the theory that ideology is software (or at least a plug-in) and ideology that is harmful to people would be viral in nature and need to be destroyed.

    And secondly, more than a few people on this planet are in desperate need of a hard restart and finally I know somebody stuck in a cut and paste loop.

  • gonzo marx

    glad ta Amuse, Benet..

    it is, after all..one of the Goals of this Jester…the other is to elucidate and ensure that the gentle Readers always know when the Emperor is nekkid…

    as for whether Hubble would be needed..insufficient data as of yet..


  • Benett

    gonzo – Just plain, or so far out even hubble’d have a hard time?

    BTW >note to self< made me bust a gut. Still, in fact.

  • gonzo marx

    ok..”Researcher Tony here just seems plain old bonkers..

    tell me , how many machines or computers have demonstrated free will?

    there goes that hypothesis, eh?

    so much flap over ID, and NO empirical data yet…just “seems” and “beliefs”

    fine for metaphysics classes in the college levels..

    but still does NOT belong in a high school biology class under the SCIENCE department..

    nuff said?


  • Kansas revisits the evolution debate

    The issue of intelligent design is now a Bio-technology!!!

    We know a great thing when we see it. Life is the greatest TECHNOLOGY we have ever seen! And now that we are starting to understand it. It would be best if you joint the rest of the planet earth in knowing a good thing when it is seen.

    We did not create so-called LIVING SYSTEMS. We are Not alone. Someone has been here before us. This Life TECHNOLOGY is of an educated MIND. Blind Evolution with lucky selections was never an inventor in the field of molecular machinery or even Bio-programming codes (DNA). We all need an update of what is going on today. The scientific understanding of living systems is changing fast. Try to keep up to date… will you!

    says Prof. Keinan. “For example, all biological systems, and even entire living organisms, are such computers.
    Every one of us is a bio-molecular computer, that is, a machine in which all four components are molecules “talking” to one another in a logical manner.


    Man is not like a machine.
    For man is a machine, someone else’s technology.

    If man is but a molecular machine with DNA functioning / engineering software. Then how can there be any debate?! It is the pre-programming of the DNA that is the cause of the so-called EVOLTION / or CHANGES. Intelligent changes by Intelligent software instructions.

    Stem cell research it a good reference.


    And God said, let us make man in our image (creators of intelligent design).

    MSN: General : Synthetic Biology (Gene Hacking, Biosensors, Biological computing)

  • Thanks for creating this spotlight, it’s neat that the topic has stirred up so much debate.

  • Thanks for putting this topic in the spotlight.

    See my review of an important but overlooked book