Miscellany: gaps in evolution (General)

by David Turell @, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, 21:32 (419 days ago) @ dhw

QUOTE: In all groups of organisms, in all regions of the Earth, and over all periods of Earth history, new groups and new body plans appear abruptly in the fossil record, mostly without any potential precursors in the older layers."

dhw: He’s hit the nail on the head. Perhaps species appear abruptly in the fossil record because, surprise, surprise, we can hardly expect a complete record of every stage of every life form to have been preserved over the thousands of millions of years of life’s history. Please explain why you think such a record ought to exist.

DAVID: Geology has advanced far beyond Darwin. Edicaran and Cambrian layers in China have nothing in between. Nothing is missing. The gap in fossil forms is enormous. Simply fronds to animals with eyes, legs, organ systems.

dhw: Bechly tells us that the “gaps” occur everywhere and cover all times. Fossils are being found all the time, and each one is a sensation. Please explain why you think there should be a complete fossil record of the history of all organs and all species.

There obviously won't be complete fill-ins during specific geologic ages. The Cambrian-Edicaran gap is different, known since before Darwin, with lots more forms recently found in the Edicaran, and that has not changed the gap. The gap is sudden complexity in the Cambrian with no precursors. It is not a time gap.

QUOTE: "However, very well preserved fossils do exist from earlier periods, and it is now generally accepted that the Cambrian explosion was real."

dhw: He spends a lot of time arguing that the Cambrian Explosion was real. I am not disputing that. What I do dispute is the extraordinary statement that 10 million years is a “little period”. It may be little in terms of the age of the planet, but it is a huge expanse of time.

DAVID: It is not the lapse of time. The intermediate fossils simply do not exist. Proved over the past 40 years in China.

dhw:b There is no possible way of proving that fossils don’t exist, but even if they don’t, that doesn’t prove the organisms themselves didn’t exist. Again, please explain why you think they should exist.

The new sites in China are well explored. What is found doesn't explain the complexity gap. Keep on your blinders. They will not help.

dhw: Please explain why you think 10 million years is not long enough for innovations to be designed by intelligent cells combining their intelligences to restructure themselves under new conditions.

DAVID: It is clear from China, no intermediate forms exist. Keep wishing.


dhw: Dealt with above. This is a different question. The complexity gap is very real .

dhw: You have not offered me a single quote yet in which your scientists discount the possibility of cellular intelligence providing the designs guiding the process of evolution.

DAVID: I follow the new research carefully. No one discusses your theory in any way. That cells look intelligent is old news. Your speciation theory is your invention.

dhw: You resolutely “forget” the Shapiro quotes from your own book: “Living cells and organisms are cognitive (sentient) entities that act and interact purposefully….They posses sensory, communication, information-processing and decision-making capabilities…they have the ability to alter their hereditary characteristics…Evolutionary novelty arises from the production of new cell and multicellular structures as a result of cellular self-modification functions and cell fusions” etc. This is not my invention, and Bechly hasn’t even considered it. It is the theory itself you should focus on, not how many people discuss it.

You asked me about other discussions! Shapiro is pure theory, his, not taken up by anyone else.

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