Via Bad Astronomy comes this incredible image:
(as BA says: Click to hugely embiggen)
I may start a regular weekly posting of a cool image. They wouldn't all be from space, just pics I think are cool. We'll see.
UPDATE: Also via Bad Astronomy, comes NASA Images for all your space picture needs.
Sunday, August 24, 2008
Via Bad Astronomy comes this incredible image:
John went insane today at 7:05 PM
Saturday, August 23, 2008
Via Fundies Say the Darndest Things (specifically here)comes a creotard website that is almost painful in its ignorance.
Missing Universe Museum
Here is the site's mission statement (from the home page):
The Missing Universe Museum contrasts the Evolution and Creation models of origins. The main purpose of this museum is to demonstrate that these two models are opposites and therefore are mutually exclusive. The public will be shown the assumptions behind each model and will be assisted in making predictions based on them. Evidence from around the world is presented so that each person will be able to make an intelligent, informed decision as to which model best explains our universe.
Here's how evolution is defined in "Exhibit 1":
The Evolution model states that matter has always existed.A few (partially) correct statements + a few outright lies = wildly incorrect description of MET. There is one reference given (Exhibit 1A). It is a statement by The American Humanist Association, from 1977 (it's really good, and still 100% applicable). Here is the same statement, but on www.americanhumanist.org. Almost surprisingly, it is the same. But it isn't really a reference, it is, as it's title says, "A Statement Affirming Evolution as a Principle of Science". It is not a description of the evidence for MET.
Modern Evolutionary Theory says no such thing. Wrong theory. Hell, wrong branch of science.Everything in the universe came about by chance.
Still not MET. Life began spontaneously from non living matter.
That's really abiogenesis, not MET. But that's a quibble; MET does sort of imply abiogenesis. However, "spontaneously" is bullplop. Get rid of that and the statement is true enough. Evolution is a random, ongoing process.
Partial credit for "ongoing process". Selection via survival is very much non-random. All living things have a common ancestor.
A 100% correct statement. I am astounded! There is no God.
Oops. MET has nothing to say about the existence of any god(s). The concept of evolution has been hinted at for centuries, but Darwin gave it apparent plausibility by his theory of natural selection which would result in "purposeful" organisms without a Creator.
Close. Lose the word "apparent", and you've got it. The mechanism for change is mutation, refined by natural selection.
Incredible, right again!
Here's the definition for the creation model (also part of "Exhibit 1"):
The Creation model is defined by the Bible. God has always existed. All things were created by God and all life forms existed at the same time. Every living thing then would reproduce after it's kind, so Creation was an act, not an ongoing process. There was no death until man disobeyed God.There are four reference links, all of which provide a bunch of bible verses (some of which are repeats), and nothing else.
Wait, where did that last part come from? I think Genesis 3:22 The Bible says that the world was flooded, which caused rapid mass extinction and reshaped the surface of the earth.
And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:[KJV] clearly indicates that man, at least, was already subject to death.
Pretty standard tactic: ignore all that pesky evidence, and claim an ancient text trumps it all anyway.
Then there is a fun little chart comparing "predictions" of both theories.
Going through it line-by-line:
Notice that I didn't say anything about the creation side of the table. That's because if you posit an omnipotent deity, absolutely anything is possible.
I don't know about trillions, but lots, so I'll let this one pass, too.
Again, trillions? but yeah, vestigial organs. So, pass.
Guess what, speciation has been observed. But MET predicts both, actually. Increasing due to speciation, and decreasing due to extinctions. Fail.
NO. That should be "Random Mutation + Non-Random Selection". The selection part is what makes MET work. If you don't emphasize selection, you aren't discussing MET. Fail.
A slew of transitional fossils have been discovered. That link is even outdated, several more have been discovered. But, hey, it's right about MET, so, pass.
We have those pesky transitional fossils. Whales and horses are good examples. And, sorry creos, dating methods really are accurate Still, right about MET. I'm actually pleasantly surprised that "progression" is used rather than "progress" (which suggests a goal). Pass
MET does not predict overpopulation. Fail.
"Temporary Extinction" is an oxymoron. When a species goes extinct, it is gone forever. The dodo is not coming back. Fail.
This probably refers to the Urey-Miller experiment back in the '50s. But there probably was a mildly reducing atmosphere. Even so, MET does not require one. So, Fail.
Nope, sorry. Evolution occurs at varying rates (punctuated equilibrium) and extinctions can happen quite suddenly. Fail
MET makes no predictions about the condition of a creature when it was buried. Fossilization could occur (or not) either way. Fail.
According to MET, the vast majority of mutations are neutral, followed by harmful as distant second. Mutations may be beneficial, but it's very unlikely. Fail.
"Rare" is a relative term. In terms of raw numbers fossils are extremely common. As a kid, I used to find rocks with fossilized shell imprints in the gravel in my driveway. In comparison to the number of organisms that have ever lived, fossilization is rare. So, while this is technically correct, it is also misleading. Therefore, fail.
Even though it's a pretty big stretch to tie this to MET, I'll let it slide. But, if we are using them several million times faster than they form, they aren't really renewable, are they? Fail.
Geographical isolation is one major way speciation can occur. Fail.
BWAHAHAHAHAHA! Epic Fail!
That's just Exhibit 1. The other 24 fail just as badly.
My favorite, and the one that brought this site to my attention, is Exhibit 20, wherein evolution is disproved because a random pile of LEGOs doesn't become a house or a car or something. This kind of hearkens back to Fred Hoyle's "Tornado + Junyard = Boeing 747" metaphor for evolution. Both illustrate a terrible, perhaps insurmountable, misunderstanding of MET.
Oh, about that clock thing. See this previous post. Pay close attention to the exposition at the beginning and end of the video to understand why clocks can't really evolve.
John went insane today at 7:07 PM
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Via Good Math / Bad Math Some extras have been added.
Which of the following foods have you eaten:
Well, that's it. I've had a little over half of the original 100. I can't think of anything to add to the list.
Some extras have been added.
John went insane today at 8:45 PM