More on whale evolution Indohyus

| 34 Comments

Nature has a cool mini-documentary which outlines why the researchers believe that indohyus is a missing link. As James Hrynyshyn points out, there is still much work to be done but it shows real scientists go about developing exciting new hypotheses which lead to more scientific inquiry. Also list to the Nature podcast or read the full text at Nature. We learn how through hard work and serendipity, the link between Indohyus and the cetaceans was uncovered. While cleaning the fossil which had been found 15 years ago, a researcher accidentally broke off an ear. Before gluing it back on, the researcher showed the ear to Thewissen and his team and they noticed how the inner ear was very whale-like.

You may ask yourself, what has Intelligent Design contributed to our scientific knowledge.

34 Comments

” … what has Intelligent Design contributed to our scientific knowledge.”

Nothing.

This has been another edition of simple answers to simple questions. (ht Atrios)

I am always amazed to hear from people like these scientists who have the mileage and experience measuring and analyzing these fossils. With that experience comes the ability to recognize the importance of structures in the fossils. I don’t understand how creationists or ID proponents can dismiss their work as “speculation” only. Clearly they have no appreciation for the hours spent by experts like this. I get annoyed when I hear non-educators pontificate on education, but then, we all went to school so we all know something about teaching, right? But how many of us have spent time in the field and lab doing paleontology?

Anyway, I am glad that these scientists bother to communicate their finds to laypeople like me, and use a format that I can understand!

I will never ever understand the people who say science sucks all the wonder out of life.

” … what has Intelligent Design contributed to our scientific knowledge.”

I wonder how Intelligent Design proponents explain cases where the design is not intelligent. There are many cases of veistgal organs like the appendix or the coxix but, as a 57 year old man, there is one case that stands out. Why would any intelllegent designer route a fleixble tube (urethra) through the middle of the prostate gland when the prostate grows larger during life. The urethra will be cut off in some males inevitably causing problems in later life.

Evolution explains this because 57 year old males are not an evolutionary priority. Their reproductive years are generally behind them. But an Intellegent designer would not commit such a mistake. I am not a biologist but when I look at the design of species, I see one basic pattern replicated when possible and modified when needed to fit the situation. That is not intelligent design, it’s evolution.

” … what has Intelligent Design contributed to our scientific knowledge.”

Personally, the cdesign proponentists have contributed greatly to my understanding of the nature of mental delusions.

No matter how much a fool someone is, it is usually possible to learn something from them. Even if it is only to learn that they are a fool.

Why would any intelllegent designer route a fleixble tube (urethra) through the middle of the prostate gland

Because Adam bit the apple and sin changed everything. Even made the T Rex a non-vegetarian. It wasn’t the intelligent designer’s fault. Isn’t it obvious? ;-)

Syntax Error: mismatched tag at line 9, column 2, byte 911 at /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/5.12.3/mach/XML/Parser.pm line 187

Lurchgs:

I am sometimes forced to wonder if maybe ID isn’t actually good for the sciences. People who don’t care much hear of the “controversy” end up becoming interested and *gasp* actually spend a little time researching - or even going to school. Lo and behold, another scientist.

Those that don’t, who just blindly follow either trail are.. well, lost anyway.

I applaud Mike and his example of .. ahem… piss poor design. I can’t but wonder, though, if sugar isn’t a better example. Here we have a chemical our body can make in sufficient quantity that we don’t have any need to be able to detect it. Not only can we detect it, it tastes good. So good that we will seek it out and consume it to the greater detriment of the individual eating it.

That strikes me as absolutely *horrible* design, and it’s not limited to any age group or either sex.

missing link

Aiiieeeee!

Ikeithlu said I am always amazed to hear from people like these scientists who have the mileage and experience measuring and analyzing these fossils. With that experience comes the ability to recognize the importance of structures in the fossils.

I just read an opinion piece by former presidential speechwriter Michael Gerson that introduced some of the usual questions Creationists ask with the statement, “I have little knowledge of, or interest in, the science behind this debate.” Such acknowledgments rarely, if ever, stop a person from proceeding to argue from a basis of ignorance.

Indeed. What sort of person insists that they KNOW their viewpoint is correct, even they disagree with the folks who actively work in the area involved? It’s a slap in the face, really. These sorts should not be in important political positions, IMO.

Is this satire? A missing link? Over half of the frigging chain in missing! Indohyus is considered evolutionarily relevant because… it ran to the water when scared? … it’s inner ear looks “whale-like”? Too bad after 15 years of working on the fossil and recognizing the important structures, they accidentally broke off the fossilized ear bone(?). Then the take away is “ID sux”! You guys are a hoot!

lkeithlu: Indeed. What sort of person insists that they KNOW their viewpoint is correct, even they disagree with the folks who actively work in the area involved?

Simple. Such a person would be a Homo sapien. It is explained by simple natural selection. Children trust their parents. When the mother says, “don’t play near the lake shore, or the croc is going to get you”, the child that trusts its mother would have a better survival rate. By extension there is a selection premium to trust parents. By extension, those the parents trust are also trustworthy. And thus trusting the leaders of the kin group that one belongs to has survival advantage. And they trust everything, good (the croc warning, being truthful etc), the bad (goat sacrifice to bring rain) and ugly (xenophobia, wars, slavery, misogyny)

This leads to a second level of selection. Some members learn to exploit the trust to their advantage. This group learns to persuade the others to be more selfless and sacrifice for the good of the community. This exploiting group has bred the community for several hundred generations to trust the leadership. They would not be shaken from their faith. They are the Cdesign proponentists.

We should find scientific ways to beat them.

Thomas:

Is this satire? A missing link? Over half of the frigging chain in missing! Indohyus is considered evolutionarily relevant because… it ran to the water when scared? … it’s inner ear looks “whale-like”? Too bad after 15 years of working on the fossil and recognizing the important structures, they ally broke off the fossilized ear bone(?). Then the take away is “ID sux”! You guys are a hoot!

Oh! What a skeptic! Our good Thomas here, is true his namesake Doubting Thomas, checks everything. Checks, rechecks and checks them again, like the National Inquirer!

Let us see the latest story being fed to the Cdesign Proponentists why the Dover decision went against them. It is because Judge Jones was a ACLU stooge and ACLU ghost wrote the decision. That is why.

But he was recommended by Rick Santorum and appointed by Bush and approved by the Republicans in senate. Are the leaders trusted by the great moral majority of the country such easy to fool rubes? Or did they know the evil design of ACLU and still appointed him anyway, rationalizing these creationists are such gullible idiots and they could be taken for a ride?

Either way Thomas, you need to doubt the sanity and sincerity of either the leadership or the followers. But you won’t. Because your skepticism is just skin deep. You are told that fossil evidence is false by the same leadership that appointed Judge Jones, and you will believe them and not the scientists who spent a lifetime analyzing fossils.

And Thomas, we know why. See my earlier post about natural selection producing someone precisely like you.

Thomas:

Is this satire? A missing link? Over half of the frigging chain in missing! Indohyus is considered evolutionarily relevant because… it ran to the water when scared? … it’s inner ear looks “whale-like”? Too bad after 15 years of working on the fossil and recognizing the important structures, they accidentally broke off the fossilized ear bone(?). Then the take away is “ID sux”! You guys are a hoot!

And you can pass judgment on this fossil because? You have studied the relevant fossils in this group? Because you have the education in paleontology and then the experience in the field? Explain why we should listen when you “pooh pooh” the report of paleontologists. An argument from incredulity? A conspiracy among scientists to deceive? Inquiring minds would like to know. Just like I want to hear driving critique from a 15 year old without a drivers’ license.

Thomas, you should be aware of the work of Georges Cuvier, an anti-evolution scientist who is famous for his reconstructions of animals from fragmentary remains. Famous enough that he is even mentioned by Sherlock Holmes: “As Cuvier could correctly describe a whole animal by the contemplation of a single bone, so the observer who has thoroughly understood one link in a series of incidents should be able to accurately state all the other ones, both before and after.” (“The Five Orange Pips”)

Why can’t creationists like Thomas just admit that they can’t accept any science that doesn’t fit in neatly with their literal interpretation of the bible, instead of attempting to poke holes in science. Creationists are such a dishonest ilk.

Thomas the creo troll:

You guys are a hoot!

Scientists figure things out. This is why we live in the computer age rather than the stone age.

Fundies lie a lot and occasionally murder people. So what else have they done for humankind? Besides make their religion look bad?

Imagine if Thomas was your high school science teacher.

“No need to look at recent fossil discoveries today, kids. Why waste time classroom looking at long dead animals. Instead we’ll read real science from the book of Genesis and after lunch I’m going to show you some very enlightening farty videos made by Design Theorist Dr William Dembski”

Here we have a chemical our body can make in sufficient quantity that we don’t have any need to be able to detect it. Not only can we detect it, it tastes good. So good that we will seek it out and consume it to the greater detriment of the individual eating it.

Um, have you heard of fruit?

it’s inner ear looks “whale-like”?

Did you intentionally leave out the word “very”? Does

Indohyus shares with cetaceans several synapomorphies that are not present in other artiodactyls. Most significantly, Indohyus has a thickened medial lip of its auditory bulla, the involucrum (Figs 1 and 3), a feature previously thought to be present exclusively in cetaceans. Involucrum size varies among cetaceans, but the relative thickness of medial and lateral walls of the tympanic of Indohyus is clearly within the range of that of cetaceans and is well outside the range of other cetartiodactyls (Fig. 3). Other significant derived similarities between Indohyus and cetaceans include the anteroposterior arrangement of incisors in the jaw, and the high crowns in the posterior premolars.

mean anything to you?

Then the take away is “ID sux”!

No, moron, that’s the take away from its failure to contribute anything to our scientific knowledge.

Gentlemen, adjust your spelling checkers.

It’s cdesign proponentsists.

Gentlemen, adjust your spelling checkers.

It’s cdesign proponentsists

This is true for the plural. Since a plural was inserted into a plural.

For the purpose of standardization, would the singular be “cdesign proponentsist”, or “cdesign proponentist”

Got my paleo-powered computer working again. It was unplugged. Seems like it takes an epoch to reboot. Science IS amazing. Could make a good God-supplement. Hmmm.… I’m getting the point, guys. Religion without science is blind. Didn’t someone famous say that? I’m thinking Oprah or Ptolemy.

Thomas:

Got my paleo-powered computer working again. It was unplugged. Seems like it takes an epoch to reboot. Science IS amazing. Could make a good God-supplement. Hmmm.… I’m getting the point, guys. Religion without science is blind. Didn’t someone famous say that? I’m thinking Oprah or Ptolemy.

Albert Einstein said: “Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind.”

Shocking though it may be, something isn’t necessarily true just because Einstein said it … especially in regard to religion, a word that Einstein used rather idiosyncratically.

Meanwhile our troll seems to have abandoned his ignorant and intellectually lazy “satire … hoot” argument.

This is true for the plural. Since a plural was inserted into a plural.

It’s true because that’s the actual text in the OPaP draft, text misquoted several times above.

For the purpose of standardization, would the singular be “cdesign proponentsist”, or “cdesign proponentist”

Since “cdesign proponentsists” was the result of a botched substitution of “design proponents” for “creationists”, a similar botch in the singular would obviously be “cdesign proponentist”. However, since that isn’t text actually seen in any OPaP draft, it would be better to avoid such a singular construction and only use it in its extant plural form.

Here’s some additional information about the Indohyus thing. There is indeed, MUCH more work to be done, it would seem. Check this out:

“How Bambi Gave Rise to Moby Dick” 12/20/2007

Go to the following link, and scroll down; there’s plenty of information to consider.

http://creationsafaris.com/crev2007[…]tm#20071220a

Meanwhile, here’s one paragraph from the article, for appetizer.

This is, as they themselves said, only a “working hypothesis” at best. Compare that with the triumphal announcements in the The Register quoted at the beginning of this entry: “The tables are turned now [against the creationists] because we have fossils that show that dramatic transition step by step.”

FL

FL spewed:

There is indeed, MUCH more work to be done, it would seem.

Insert Bart Simpson response here.

And guess who’s doing the work, FL? Real scientists. Not Aristotlean mind-wankers like you and WAD.

Real scientists will continue to do the real work while cdesign proponensists continue to insist on the biological equivalent of “man will never fly, the earth is flat, and no-one ever walked on the moon”.

Bye, now.

So, FL, can you demonstrate what ID or Creationism have done to contribute to the description of fossil whales and fossil whale-like artiodactyls like Indohyus?

What’s that?

Absolutely nothing beyond sanctimonious jibberish and holier-than-thou bellyaching?

I thought so.

Let the readers compare/contrast the information that’s been given and judge for themselves, Stanton. Somebody’s claiming that Indohyus “is a missing link”, and obviously they’ve got you sold on it.

But there’s nothing wrong with doing some critical thinking on this story instead of merely swallowing it hook line and sinker, and Creation-Evolution Headlines definitely offers some critical thinking on the matter; just some stuff to think about.

FL

Syntax Error: mismatched tag at line 4, column 205, byte 465 at /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/5.12.3/mach/XML/Parser.pm line 187

What information was given there, FL?

All they have said at Creation-Evolution Headlines is the exact same rubbish creationists have babbled about the similarities between mesonychids and whales, in that

“evolutionists are wrong when they point out similarities between whales and fossil ungulates”

“And the evil evolutionists are changing their minds, therefore, they’ve been wrong all this time!”

People who have not willingly put out their mind’s eyes, like FL, will notice that not a single creationist has been able to explain why fossil whales bear strong anatomical similarities with mesonychids, as well as strong anatomical similarities with Indohyus.

So, FL, if you can not provide an alternative explanation, like I have asked you repeatedly, stop posting your smarmy drivel.

it’s funny, but FL is guilty of each and every charge that would have gotten him banned from Pharyngula long ago:

wanking insipidity spamming (see the above advertisment for creation news) concern trolling godbotting slagging stupidity trolling

well, at least he isn’t a sockpuppet or a morpher, like larry farfromsane.

just what value does he represent to PT again?

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by PvM published on December 25, 2007 4:21 PM.

I could not have said it better was the previous entry in this blog.

Dembski’s and Wells’s shenanigans - just a reminder is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Categories

Archives

Author Archives

Powered by Movable Type 4.361

Site Meter