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Comment: Re:Creationism (Score 2) 217

by Newtonian_p (#34624972) Attached to: Scientists Decipher 3-Billion-Year-Old Genomic Fossils

This sort of ad-hoc rationalisation can be used to account for absolutely anything imaginable. For instance, arguing that God created the whole Universe 5 minutes ago with everything in it and all our memories in a way to make it undistinguishable from a 13.7 billion year old Universe would be another example of ad-hoc rationalisation that can account for anything which is intellectually equivalent to your suggestion.

I know you don't necessarily believe in "domino theology", it is just something to use on creationists but in my experience there almost no chance that they'll change anything in their mind about the subject of evolution. For anything related to someone's religiously based beliefs it's hard to have any productive discussion.

Comment: Re:Wow (Score 2, Informative) 575

by Newtonian_p (#33743476) Attached to: Earth-Like Planet That Could Sustain Life Found

"The Great Debate" occured in 1920 and it took a while after that to figure out that Heber Curtis was right. It's crazy that it took so long to develop the telescopes needed to find out there are other galaxies out there.

And in less than 90 years since then, we now have the technology to take those Deep Field pictures showing tens of thousands of galaxies at a time when the Universe was 300 million years old.

Comment: That's not how evolution works (Score 1, Redundant) 409

by Newtonian_p (#27305755) Attached to: I expect the last human on Earth to be born ...

There is no point where we stopped being something else and started being humans because evolution happens in small gradual steps. Over very long periods of times, the individuals of a population are so different from their ancestral population that if you could take a present individual, travel back through time, it couldn't reproduce with members of the ancestral species.

Think of it. If two animals had an offspring that had evolved into some new species, with whom would it reproduce? It would be the only one of its species. Two animals may have an offspring with a slight mutation which proves to be favorable. This offspring can still reproduce with other members of its species because that little mutation doesn't make it different enough to be genetically incompatible. Since this mutation is statistically favored, it will spread across the members of a specie as generations pass by. Many such mutation will accumulate over long periods of time leading some very different animals than what you started with. Never will you see any big difference between one generation and the next.

If a population is suddenly separated, each sub-population will accumulate different such mutations such that over a long period of time they members can no longer reproduce if they were to somehow meet again. Hence, they species has split into two species.

Incidentally, we do not descend from Monkey's nor Neanderthals. They are more of our cousins than our ancestors.

Nothing is rich but the inexhaustible wealth of nature. She shows us only surfaces, but she is a million fathoms deep. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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