Monday, October 08, 2007

Dembski talks Junk DNA

I think the folks at Pandas Thumb, Sandwalk, and Genomicron will be interested in this Q&A:

Young gentleman-- What predictions, if any, does your so called 'Theory of Intelligent Design' make?

Dembski-- I think it, aaaaah, one thing it does, it predicts there is going to be a lot of unevolveability of these systems. You can start looking at how improbable they are. I mean evolution is a theory that says you can get from Point A to Point B via various resources. Variation, gene transfer, Darwinian mechanisms, you have these resources-- Can you get there from Point A to Point B with these resources... Youre at the base of Mt. Everest and whats going to get you to the top? A Chevy Nova isnt going to get you there. You need the right resources. (keeps going on about resources and Point A and Point B) We say that various systems like the bacterial flagellum, various enzymes, are not going to be evolvable. So that would be one prediction. I can give you more! Information packaged in DNA! Is this cobbled together through blind forces, we should not be able to find this tight information package. So that would be another prediction. FOR THE LAST TEN YEARS Ive been saying all this talk about 'Junk DNA' is probably misguided! There is a lot of good evidence that repetitive DNA, which is classic 'junk DNA', is not junk! Theres a recent paper by James Shapiro...

(Me and Ian talking too loud for me to hear the ending to that sentence cause we were all pissed off about 'junk DNA')

  1. Wow. Those are some hard-core predictions-- God of Gaps, and stuff scientists figured out half a century ago. Behold the mighty power of ID!!
  2. Creationism has gone from Ford Pintos to Chevy Novas.
  3. The bacterial flagellum is UNEVOLVABLE! That is a prediction. Remember that.
  4. Bloggers take note: Dembski is saying, clearly, that there should be NO JUNK in our genomes if they are right. Quote this at will.


Bob O'Hara said...

There is a lot of good evidence that repetitive DNA, which is classic 'junk DNA', is not junk!
*taps side of Dembski's head*

'Alu, 'Alu, is there anyone at home in there?


Anonymous said...

Hi ERV,on the topic of "junk DNA",just wondering if there is significant amounts of it in say dna viruses,bacteria etc,compared to mammals?


MajorMath said...

Suggested ID bumpersticker:

God Don´t Make No Junk DNA!

Chris Noble said...

I mean evolution is a theory that says you can get from Point A to Point B via various resources.

This seems to characterise the inability of IDers to understand evolution. Evolution isn't about getting from Point A to Point B.

IDers can't seem to let go of the idea that everything, including evolution, must have a purpose and a target.

TR Gregory said...

I doubt he has read it, but I have laid out what would be expected of ID if it were to be considered scientific on this point, even without doing any real research:

An opportunity for ID to be scientific

VWXYNot? said...

TR, did you ever see my creationist troll's response to your challenge? It's deeply embedded in a long comments thread, so start from the bottom and scroll up to stuart arcs' last post. Some stunning "insights" from a creationist computer programmer...

Blake Stacey said...

Congratulations: you have hereby been memed!

ERV said...

Bob-- Thats the thing. Alus are awesome for RECOMBINING DNA, you know, EVOLVING, but I have no idea what a Creationist wants with it. Especially one that doesnt *believe* humans descended from other organisms.

Anon-- Go to Genomicron, TR Gregorys blog! He has lots of great comparing-genome posts, like this one!
For a quick answer, from my POV-- HIV has nothing I would call 'junk'. It uses all of its genome, which is one of the reasons why adding things is pretty damn awesome (like Vpx or Vpu).

Chris-- Dude, he went on and on and ON using just three words: Point A, Point B, resources.

Blake-- Give me a minute, I dont know if I understand the tag, LOL!

Blake Stacey said...

It's simple: you're allowed two mutations, which can be point substitutions, insertions or deletions (but only one of each kind)!

I had to read the instructions a few times before I understood (I think) what PZ wanted.