Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Historic planetary instability and catastrophe. Evidence for electrical scarring on planets and moons. Electrical events in today's solar system. Electric Earth.

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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby Sparky » Tue May 08, 2012 6:30 am

webo-, thanks for the info...I must admit, that other than what we observe as adapting within species, I don't understand "evolution". The last thing I heard about was the Hypothesis that viruses and bacteria played a big role in changes within the genetic codes. The suggestion that they and parasites still are affecting us in ways that have been attributed to other causes.

All very confusing... :?
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby PersianPaladin » Tue May 08, 2012 7:55 am

Quite an arrogant-sounding article here claims that "autocatalytic sets" can potentially explain the origin of life:-

One of the most puzzling questions about the origin of life is how the rich chemical landscape that makes life possible came into existence.

This landscape would have consisted among other things of amino acids, proteins and complex RNA molecules. What's more, these molecules must have been part of a rich network of interrelated chemical reactions which generated them in a reliable way.

Clearly, all that must have happened before life itself emerged. But how?

One idea is that groups of molecules can form autocatalytic sets. These are self-sustaining chemical factories, in which the product of one reaction is the feedstock or catalyst for another. The result is a virtuous, self-contained cycle of chemical creation.

Today, Stuart Kauffman at the University of Vermont in Burlington and a couple of pals take a look at the broader mathematical properties of autocatalytic sets. In examining this bigger picture, they come to an astonishing conclusion that could have remarkable consequences for our understanding of complexity, evolution and the phenomenon of emergence.

They begin by deriving some general mathematical properties of autocatalytic sets, showing that such a set can be made up of many autocatalytic subsets of different types, some of which can overlap.

In other words, autocatalytic sets can have a rich complex structure of their own.

They go on to show how evolution can work on a single autocatalytic set, producing new subsets within it that are mutually dependent on each other. This process sets up an environment in which newer subsets can evolve.


Cont. here:-
http://www.technologyreview.com/blog/ar ... 7/?ref=rss

Notice how they refer to "evolution" as if it somehow bestowed with an innate intelligence? That's odd. I also fail to see how autocatalytic sets can generate anything outside of the parameters of micro-evolution. It is a mathematical model, so it really doesn't satisfy the natural philosopher in me. I suggest these scientists actually put amino acids, proteins and complex RNA molecules into a soup full of different chemical reactions and see if they can create a simple living organism without constantly intervening with their human hand :P
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby webolife » Tue May 08, 2012 8:27 pm

Sparky said:
"... other than what we observe as adapting within species, I don't understand 'evolution'."

I would modify your boundary to "family" rather than species, for a couple reasons:
1) "species" is very poorly defined in biology, and much more poorly in paleobiology. The textbook definition <interbreeding to form fertile offspring> is rarely ever followed in the field. Usually "species" just means <hey, I found something interesting> due to the virtual impossibility of putting the glossary version to the test.
2) "family" promotes an understanding of microevolution and the variety it produces within reasonable and observable limits.

Sparky mentioned: "...the hypothesis that viruses and bacteria played a big role in changes within the genetic codes. The suggestion that they and parasites still are affecting us in ways that have been attributed to other causes."

I like the viral connection in that it describes an interesting functional role for these protein-coated RNA containers besides that of disease-causing parasites. Mycoplasms may play a similar role role to retroviruses in transporting DNA/RNA information packets between organisms adding to the potential for variation among groups. Along with the explosion of knowledge in the field of epigenetics, we are seeing many active everyday contributors to variety within a family that have nothing to do with the impossible "positive" accumulation of random deleterious mutations or mind-numbing eons of impotent and ineffective time. At the same time, and reflecting upon the article quoted by PP, it accentuates that information comes from information rather than from accidental collisions of meaningless molecules.
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby Sparky » Wed May 09, 2012 8:57 am

I suggest these scientists actually put amino acids, proteins and complex RNA molecules into a soup full of different chemical reactions and see if they can create a simple living organism without constantly intervening with their human hand :P

That would be a large fudge wouldn't it?
Can they even create RNA molecules and proteins from a chemical soup without intervening somehow? :?

webo-, thanks for correction...i really don't know the difference between "family", "species", and the others...flunked biology in HS>...

I guess I might be able to blame my shortcomings on my cats... :D
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What other parasites might be actively affecting human cognition?
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby tholden » Thu May 10, 2012 1:37 am

Neither catastrophic evolution nor punk-eek really works in any sort of a logical sense. Velikovsky's notion of catastrophic evolution probably explains some if not most of what you'd call microevolution, but there is no workable theory of macroevolution, all any real mutations ever do is lose genetic information and kill off the victims.

There is in fact another possibility which at least explains what we see in our own fossil record, and that is the notion of saltations, which could involve deliberate saltations or what I call "splash saltation"; in the particular case of the Cambrian explosion, splash saltation appears to me at least to be the most likely candidate. One of the new pages on bearfabrique goes into this in some detail:

http://bearfabrique.org/History/Prehist ... istory.htm
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby webolife » Thu May 10, 2012 9:36 am

THolden,
While we agree on a number of things we don't believe, I have to say you have some very fantastical ideas regarding life from elsewhere in the universe salting the earth from time to time. The highly processed [faked?]images of civilizations on Mars or asteroids don't attest well to your sincerity, and the artist reconstructions [Neanderthal illustrations] don't really do justice to the actual bone morphologies. There is a lot of wishful thinking going on in your website info. I'm somewhat sensitive to this as I have been accused of wishful thinking in the past, and have done a great deal of scientific research and field study to account for statements that I make.

That being said, I appreciate you being around to liven up the conversation around here!
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby webolife » Thu May 10, 2012 10:16 am

Sparky,
As I said before, "species" is ill-defined but here are some examples of "species" within Family groups:

Family: Felines
Species: Felix domesticus, Panthera leo, Panthera tigris, Panthera panthera, Puma concolor, etc.

Family: Canines
Species: Canis lupus familiaris, Canis lupus, Canis latrans, Vulpes vulpes, etc.

Family: Rose
Species: (I'll list these by common names to reflect the wide variety of things that are considered the same "family" in botany -- botanical classification is ill-defined to the extreme -- most of these would be in the "Genus" category)
Besides all the hybrid roses in our gardens there are these other very common family members:
Strawberries, raspberries, plums, buttercups, crabapple, mountain ash, ocean spray, spirea, etc.
When it comes to botanical classification, generally, the rules that are followed are:
1. How the plant reproduces, ie. morphology of the reproductive structures
2. Leaf or other organ arrangements and shapes

What I would emphasize in relation to this thread is that taxonomy is highly subjective and generally based upon macroevolutionary premises, and in a turn-around of hugely impactful proportions, the taxonomy is then used as evidence for evolution!
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby tholden » Thu May 10, 2012 11:42 am

webolife wrote:THolden,
While we agree on a number of things we don't believe, I have to say you have some very fantastical ideas regarding life from elsewhere in the universe salting the earth from time to time. The highly processed [faked?]images of civilizations on Mars or asteroids don't attest well to your sincerity...


I have personally gone to the trouble and exercise to download three or four of those ESA and NASA images which appear to show desert areas and made the adjustments to lighting and contrast (with the Free Software Foundations "gimp" package) which turns those images into images of tall buildings and urban infrastructure, to determine for myself whether or not the people making those claims are crazy. You clearly have not made any similar effort.

The other point I could bring up is that I have worked with applications including steganography which require some knowledge of jpeg and other image format schemes, and can state with total certainty that there is no way any sort of image handling artifacts could produce the kinds of structures which I am calling urban infrastructure in those Mars images.

Again for the uninitiated, the best starting point for Mars stuff on the web:

http://www.marsanomalyresearch.com/
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby tholden » Thu May 10, 2012 11:54 am

webolife wrote:... and the artist reconstructions [Neanderthal illustrations] don't really do justice to the actual bone morphologies. ....


How many other things are you a renowned expert on? Danny Vendramini has made a gigantic study of the situation involving Neanderthals over a ten year period. You might want to check the list of resources he provides for his book:

http://www.themandus.org/References-them+us.pdf

and then tell us what he's looking at the wrong way and you might want to tell NHNZ (Natural History New Zealand) as well as they're in the process of producing a television series dealing with Vendramini's work.
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby webolife » Thu May 10, 2012 4:18 pm

Wow!!! A thousand references! And some of them by people who actually disagree with him [I've read a few of those articles and books myself, so I can vouch a bit for this]. Nice collection! Such a list of references is kind of like having a Ph.D. or graduating from Stanford. How can anyone not believe the conclusions drawn by such a literate person!!! I'm duly impressed.

I have a very intelligent friend who programs black boxes for airlines; he is a computer simulation expert who sincerely believes the entire universe is simply a hologram.
Very smart and very nice guy. I don't believe a word he says.

As for my expertise, I do not have a very high opinion of "experts" in general, but I don't mind being thought of as at least an amateur in a few areas:
1. Teaching mathematics [my career]
2. Earth Science [my major], and particularly geology and astronomy
3. "Biblical" Earth history connections to Earth science [teach a 20 hour class to adults]
3. Evolution
4. Protein Synthesis, as an irreducibly complex process -- the fundamental principle of life
5. Paradigm extraction in theories of light
I wish I could say EU, but still way too much to learn here...
I wish even more I could say "being a father" but after having 5 children, now 4 grandkids, I am still learning so much I can't see much beyond beginner/intermediate level...
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby tholden » Thu May 10, 2012 6:37 pm

webolife wrote:As for my expertise, I do not have a very high opinion of "experts" in general.....


In other words, you're like I am and like to check things out for yourself when possible...

Try this... This is an ESA image of the Hale crater region:

http://esamultimedia.esa.int/images/mar ... ater_H.jpg

and this is the FSF's Gimp package, the same image software used to construct the GNU window manager for LINUX:

http://www.gimp.org/downloads/

It's free, all you need to do is download and install it. The next step is to read that Hale crater image into Gimp, zoom a couple of times, convert to gray-scale, and adjust brightness down and contrast up a bit, and then get back to us as to whether you think you're still seeing a desert region.....

Like I say, what I get doing that doesn't look at all like a desert:

Image

J.P. Skipper's page on the topic:

http://www.marsanomalyresearch.com/evid ... idence.htm
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby kell1990 » Sat May 12, 2012 6:28 pm

..."i really don't know the difference between "family", "species", and the others...flunked biology in HS"...

A mnemonic from long ago, relating to the hierarchy in biology: "King Phillip Came Over For Ginger Snaps."

King= Kingdom
Phillip=Phylum
Came=Class
Over=Order
For=Family
Ginger=Genus
Snaps=Species

Hope this helps someone.
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby kell1990 » Sat May 12, 2012 6:52 pm

>THolden:

"Like I say, what I get doing that doesn't look at all like a desert:"

I've seen this image a number of places and I've always wondered what it was. (Assuming that someone isn't playing around with Photoshop.)

Is it your opinion that this is an active civilization, and if it is, then why haven't we heard from them? Surely if there were activity there we'd have picked it up in previous Mars' expeditions.

It seems to me to be the remains of a previous civilization. It seems to show farms, roadways, cities--everything that a civilization needs. Except that it seems to be frozen in time.

What do you think may have happened to it, if it isn't there?
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby kell1990 » Sat May 12, 2012 8:15 pm

And now back to the original poster's inquiry--

The Cause of the Megafaunal Extinction: Supernova or Galactic Core Outburst? starburstfound.org/YDextinct/p1.html

(I hope the links work. If they don't, tell me and I'll try to make it right)

Although I don't agree with the author's conclusions, he does present some very interesting evidence for an electrical event as the cause of the 13,000 bp extinction events. He thinks that an interstellar blast of some sort is responsible for the event, and I think it is because of a "grazing" event by a very large. electrically-charged object.

There is a simultaneous thread on the "Planetary Science" subject ("11,000 BC extinction". I think it is named, relating to this very topic.)

Since his work was published, there have been further discoveries that yield more light on the event. For instance, there has been the discovery of magnetic microspherules in a layer that dates to that period, 13,000 bp, in an area that stretches from the West coast of the US to the Eastern seaboard. especially along the Delmarva (Delaware, Maryland,Virginia) peninsula and extending southward to the Carolina Bay region. These magnetic particles are consistent with an electrical discharge of some sort.

Also consistent with an electrical discharge are dozens of "pot holes" in the Earth in the same region. An upward-arcing electrical branch could easily have excavated them, and have also thrown into the atmosphere tons of sedimentary solids that settled out in the region. One way to determine if the sediments were of local origin is to analyze them; if they came from the local (~500 km) area, then something upset them and caused them to relocate in their present position.

It was about this same time that the Sahara desert came into being. Previous to that, the area was a lush, tropical region. But suddenly it became a desert, over a period of a very few years, probably less than 10. What could have cause such a sudden change? A vast electrical arc, struck from the sky, which killed all the greenery and all the seeds, except that which was near a vast ground, an oasis. The water was the ground for the arc and it was the only thing that prevented the arc from killing everything. There is still a vast underground body of water underneath the Sahara desert.

Gonna post this now, but there is more to follow. Goes to China and the Gobi desert and the subterreanean Black Sea ruins and other issues.
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Re: Catastrophic evolution vs "punctuated equilibrium"

Unread postby kell1990 » Sat May 12, 2012 8:49 pm

(continued from the previous post)

One of the things that has puzzled me is why didn't all the magafauna (the wooly mammoths, the mastadons, the giant sloths, etc.) disappear while the elephants survived? I can come up with two guesses: 1) The DNA of the elephants was not affected by the electrical strike; or 2) the elephants were out of the "kill zone", meaning that they were far enough south of a strike that they survived. I think 2 is closest to the truth. The breeding stock of modern elephants came from southern Africa and from southern Asia. The "kill sone" went just to their North, and they survived.

If this hypothesis is right, then a massive electrically-charged object, at least as large as the Moon, made a grazing pass at the Earth about 13,000 years ago. Its effect was felt most strongly from about 15 degrees South latitude to about 45 degrees North latitude, in a wide swath across the Earth.

Whatever happened, and however it happened, I do beleive it is in our best interest to know, to the fullest extent of our knowledge, what it was.
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