No wonder that ten top researchers declined to take up chemist James Tour’s 60-day challenge on the origin of life. He asked five reasonable questions on the topic, of which perhaps the most devilishly difficult seeks an explanation of the origin of biological information. On his YouTube channel, Professor Tour defined in detail what he was asking for. In its very different manner, in a video out today, the cheeky Long Story Short series poses the same question.
Actually, as I just stated it, the information challenge vastly minimizes the scope and difficulty of what’s being asked for. Long Story quotes biochemist Lynn Helena Caporale in The Implicit Genome: “Even such familiar words as ‘information’ and ‘code’ seem to constrain our ability to describe what is represented in the genome.” But hey, says Long Story, perhaps despite it all, the information accumulated slowly over time, thus relieving some, though not all, of the difficulty faced by OOL theorizing. It turns out there are five separate qualities to life and its information that make this comforting rationalization impossible to uphold.
- “Chemical evolution can’t even get started.”
- “Self-replication requires HIGH accuracy.”
- “Things are constantly expiring.”
- “The information in life CHANGES the material that holds the information.”
- “The information of life is not just centralized in DNA.”
Watch the latest from Long Story Short for much more, all delivered in signature style, on each of those. OOL folks tend to brush them aside — of course they do. They’d have to in order to maintain the pretense that they are making any discernible progress. Which they are not.