“Stephen C. Meyer changes the game in the intelligent design fight with Signature in the Cell

A new review of Signature in the Cell is just out in The Journal of the International Society of Philosophical Enquiry. It brings to the forefront of the overall debate the perspective of a software engineer and logician. Specifically, Harry Kanigel, former executive director, Information Technology at UBS Investment Bank, whose expertise is in computer algorithms. So he knows a thing or two about digital information. His reviews starts strong: Stephen C. Meyer changes the game in the intelligent design fight with Signature in the Cell, a big book that methodically, but agreeably, constructs an argument that intelligence in some unspecified form, is responsidble for the bio-molecular machinery in the cell and, therefore, for first life. Meyer’s argument is, at Read More ›

“Crucial Gaps” Filled by Fossil Discovery? We’ve Heard That Before…

Another year, another fossil with some serious media backing. This week it’s a Homo habilis said to be “almost-complete” — of course, the report from the Telegraph also claims that Homo habilis was “previously unknown,” so you might want to take that with a grain of salt. In fact, you might want to read a bit more before you throw that OMG Missing Link Found! party I know you were planning. (Squatch is going to take it hard when you cancel his first music gig since the Sonics left town.) This is the same species that was reported in an AP article from 2007 which disowned Homo habilis as a human ancestor. As far back as 1999, a paper in Read More ›

Ida’s Critics Demolish Claims That Fossil Is Human Evolutionary Link

Remember Ida? The fossil hailed as the “eighth wonder of the world” whose “impact on the world of palaeontology” would be like “an asteroid falling down to Earth”? She was promised to be “the link that connects us directly with the rest of the animal kingdom.” She was touted on a History Channel / BBC documentary, but then there was the bust. Well, Ida’s critics have now gotten around to publishing technical articles critiquing the hyped view promoted to the public last year. A recent news release at the University of Texas, “Recently Analyzed Fossil Was Not Human Ancestor As Claimed, Anthropologists Say,” explains: A fossil that was celebrated last year as a possible “missing link” between humans and early Read More ›

Two Articles Defending Stephen Meyer and Signature in the Cell in Salvo Magazine

We’ve recently seen a lot of dialogue between proponents of intelligent design and critics of Stephen Meyer’s book Signature in the Cell. For example, Richard Sternberg has a fascinating series that uncovers some hints at function in SINE elements through unexpectedly conserved patterns that contradict the standard phylogeny (see Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4). Or, there’s Paul Nelson’s rejoinder to Jeffrey Shallit on whether the weather provides an example of natural processes producing specified and complex information. There’s also Stephen Meyer’s response to Francisco Ayala, as well as responses to Ayala from Jay Richards and David Klinghoffer. I recently decided to jump into this fray, publishing two articles in the latest issue of Salvo Magazine defending Read More ›

Smithsonian’s New Human Origins Exhibit Targets Students Who Doubt Darwinism

The Smithsonian has a new human origins exhibit, “What does it mean to be human?” specially targeted at swaying student visitors who might doubt Darwinian evolution. The most amusing part of the exhibit proudly explains that evolution predicted we’d lack evidence for evolution; that’s how we know it’s true! That’s right, this is how the nation’s most prestigious natural history museum presents evolution: evolution predicts that evolution is supported both when we do and when we don’t find confirming fossil evidence. Consider the following from the educator’s guide: Misconception: Gaps in the fossil record disprove evolution. Response: Science actually predicts gaps in the fossil record. Many species leave no fossils at all, and the environmental conditions for forming good fossils Read More ›