Evolution and Natural Selection...

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Evolution and Natural Selection...

Postby Gigafrost » Tue Feb 11, 2003 3:59 am

This is a thread dedicated, not on the plausibility of evolution (as very few biologists doubt) but more on the Natural Selection theory of evolution (which, as I understand, is what Biologists disagree about). Evolution would say that we'd all share common ancestors...and genetic and biological evidence has pointed to this, but how did everything come about? Natural Selection is the only proposed theory that I've heard of but there are holes in it...

What would make bisexual reproduction pop up from asexual ancestors? (This one was mentioned in my Philosophy book).

Why would carnivores appear? How?

What about viruses?

The idea is we can come up with various questions and talk about them. Remember, though, that even though we might only come up with one idea that doesn't make it true. Suprise Principle (evidence favors one theory over another), Birthday Fallacy (just because everyone has a birthday doesn't mean there's a birthday that's everybody's), and Only Game in Town Fallacy (says that something isn't true just because it's the only choice) are useful tools...I just listed them if y'all would like to think about them. :)

Anywho, I'd post some of my thoughts at the moment...but I'm not for some reason...hehehe... :oops:
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Postby TerraFrost » Tue Feb 11, 2003 4:38 am

just to preemptively clarify a few common misconceptions about evolution... evolution doesn't state that life came from nothing - evolution only explains how life changed, once it already existed. natural selection is the means by which evolution is thought to happen.

anyways, you're using the book "Twenty Questions" aren't you? 'cause we never went over evolution in my philosophy class :(

anyways, i'll just throw out a few random ideas, right now :)

i'll look more into them, latter :)

bisexual reproduction could have started to occur when our ancestors became to genetically advanced to asexually reproduce... maybe...

for carnivores... maybe as animals began to develop new "attributes", they needed more and more minerals, nutrients, or whatever, that could only be obtained by the consumption of another animal?

as far as viruses are concerned... perhapes they were some random mutation of protezoa, or something, that just happened to sorta consume other organic compounds?

anyways, about your logical fallacies... the neat thing about those is that they correspond quite nicely to sentinial logic :)
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Postby Gigafrost » Tue Feb 11, 2003 11:14 am

anyways, about your logical fallacies... the neat thing about those is that they correspond quite nicely to sentinial logic

Which is why I think my book teaches them. :)

anyways, you're using the book "Twenty Questions" aren't you? 'cause we never went over evolution in my philosophy class

I'm not sure if we're using that book, but we're not really talking too much about evolution in class (it was mentioned in reference to programs made by the concept of 'selection pressures' aka natural select)...I've been reading extra chapters in the book...hehehe

bisexual reproduction could have started to occur when our ancestors became to genetically advanced to asexually reproduce... maybe...

Perhaps, although I believe I watched a show or read an article once about some sort of creature that reproduces bisexually if it can but if not then the female reproduces asexually...it sorta implies that bisexual reproduction has better advantages than asexual. Perhaps it better forces "selection pressures" because we're talking about the survivability of two organisms instead of a single? Problem is, it still doesn't explain *how* it came about...hmmm
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Postby TerraFrost » Wed Feb 12, 2003 8:07 am

Perhaps, although I believe I watched a show or read an article once about some sort of creature that reproduces bisexually if it can but if not then the female reproduces asexually...it sorta implies that bisexual reproduction has better advantages than asexual. Perhaps it better forces "selection pressures" because we're talking about the survivability of two organisms instead of a single? Problem is, it still doesn't explain *how* it came about...hmmm


you seem to have some unwarranted expectations of the theory of natural selection. the theory of natural selection is meant to describe how species, as a whole, may evolve - not specifics, like how bisexual reproduction came out of asexual creatures... for example... the law of gravity is pretty much universally accepted. however... if you walk into a room, and see something that defies gravity... does that mean the theory of gravity is wrong? not necissarily. the object defying gravity could, for example, be "floating" due to a oppositly charged magnetic field. or perhapes there is some wind that is pushing it up. the theory of gravity has been justified many times over, and considering that, you can probably safely assume that if you see something that seems to prove gravity wrong, you're just not looking hard enough to find another force acting on it, or something.

anyways, back to the whole natural selection thing... natural selection has been justified so many times that chances are, if you don't see how it could occur, you're just not looking hard enough.

also, when i say justified... there may well be a better theory out there, but... for now, this one works, and explains a *lot* of things. so like i said earlier, if you found what appears to be an aberation, you're probably just not looking hard enough to see how it could actually happen.

that said, perhapes it came about because... it became advantagious for single celled organisms to group together for survival, or whatever, and they were so close to each other that they started sharing genetic material. when the time came for them to assexually reproduce, it wasn't really assexual reproduction because they had the shared genetic material of other close single celled organisms? perhapes as this continued, the descendents lost the ability to reproduce on their own, since they weren't doing it, and instead became bisexual, completly?

or perhapes a preditery single celled organism needed certain minerals to reproduce... and it could only get these minerals from the same species... at which point, it became bisexual. perhapes with time, these two single celled organisms become specialized in one form, or another, of this whole mineral exchange / production / whatever, and then gender came about?

i'm sure there are tons of possible ways they could have become bisexual when they were assexual, actually, heh.
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Postby Javafrost » Sun Feb 16, 2003 8:44 am

I thought the theory was that developmental variations happen all the time and whatever works best is what is "naturally selected". I think the presumed advantage of bisexual reproduction is an increase in the number of possible variations from which to "select".
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Postby Gigafrost » Sun Feb 16, 2003 8:15 pm

lefty-yup, that's pretty much how the theory works...from my understanding anyways...

terra-well, I pretty much started the thread to talk about those things natural selection has\hasn't explained yet. I suppose from my point of view if Natural Selections cannot explain some of the vague areas then it's not a good inference...it's a biased one, imo. anywho, that's just my thoughts. I'm interesting in theories involving how certain "mysteries" might be explained with natural selection....
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Postby TerraFrost » Mon Feb 17, 2003 1:04 am

the thing is... natural selection doesn't, in and of itself, explain anything. the best example of natural selection i can think of right now is with some sort of fly - as pollution changed the color of trees, in england, the dominate color of the fly changed from black to white. the thing is - these flies sorta blended in with the trees, since they were the same color. soot is white, and that's what turned the trees white. before the pollution (the soot), they were black, as was the dominate color of the flies. after the pollution, the dominate color became white.

you can't infer all this from natural selection. natural selection isn't concerned with why trees change color, or the adverse effects of pollution, or the production of soot, or anything.

the fact is... natural selection, in and of itself really can't be used to prove anything in the real world. all it does is describe one tiny aspect of a world that is infinitly more complex.

if we don't know how humans came from dinosaurs, or bisexuality came from asexuality, that isn't necessarily the fault of natural selection. it could be the fault of any number of things.

so anyways, half of my point is that the fact that we don't have a solid explanation for every little thing does *not* necessarily mean natural selection, in and of itself, has holes. it could be anything. to use symbolic logic...

(a & b & c) -> d

just because d is false doesn't mean that a is false. b or c could be false, as well... saying that a is false when d is false is a bad logical fallacy.
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