Human evolution; our feet differ from apes. (Introduction)

by dhw, Wednesday, March 04, 2020, 12:34 (122 days ago) @ David Turell

DAVID: And again you skip the gaps in the fossil record. Changes are always after the gap, no itty bitty adaptive steps ever seen.

dhw: I was responding to your constant misrepresentation of my theory as demanding knowledge of the future. It doesn’t. So now you switch back to the gaps. Of course changes are after the gap! Even if something changed overnight, there would still be a gap between before and after! The reply I gave you to this point was:
dhw: It’s a pity we don’t have a few thousand pre-Lucys to see how stiff all her ancestors’ feet were. And then a few thousand more fossils to see how stiff the feet were between all the generations of all the hominins and early homos prior to Sapiens. Without them, of course, it’s impossible to say how fast or slow the adaptation was.

Your original reply to this was: “Agreed, but she survived and my God took care of the needed designs. We have to work with the only fossils we have.”

You agree that without fossils it’s impossible to say how fast or slow the adaptation was.

DAVID: So we are left with gaps that strongly support design.

dhw: Gaps are gaps. They don’t support any theory, and a slow adaptation could still be design through the intelligence of the cell communities.

DAVID: With no fossil evidence! You are not as troubled as Gould was. He had to invent punc-inc to satisfy himself about gaps.

We cannot expect an inch by inch fossil record leading from one species to another. Every single find is hailed as momentous precisely because it is almost miraculous for bones to survive for thousands and millions of years. You claim that the gaps mean God stepped in and did a dabble (and presumably did more and more dabbles as, with his unlimited powers, he apparently continued to assemble and then discard all the different hominins and homos on his way to designing the only one he really wanted, which was us). Your alternative is a 3.8-billion-year-old computer programme for stiff transverse arches, which suddenly switched itself on. I’m afraid I don’t find this theory even remotely as believable as that of the absence of fossils, plus the fact that in accordance with the theory that changing environmental conditions are the trigger for adaptation and innovation, the long periods of stasis between environmental upheavals inevitably create “gaps” (hence Gould’s punc-inc, which I regard as perfectly logical).

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