Wednesday, November 24, 2010

some thoughts on G.K Chesterton

Chesterton suggested that the reason why Darwin's idea of natural selection has quickly gain popularity is due to the fact that people has this "worship to science" it is in our natural that we fear sense of uncertainty. We as a rather intelligent specie possess this need of knowing, we feel unsecured if there is certain phenomenal in the natural world that affects us all the time, and we have no understanding it what so ever. For example, in the past, when we have no idea why weather changes and or why lighting strikes, we would refers them as result of actions preformed by superior Being( God). Now since we have an scientific explanation to such phenomenal, explanation regarding things like light is an act of mythical power is nowhere to be seen.
Therefore the same story happened to the effort of explaining how evaluation works. Starting as early as 16s there was an explosion of scientific explanation to natural phenomenal around us. It is true that science has explained lots of things perfectly, however it might not be the case for the reasoning behind how evolution works, and Darwin's theory might merely be a pre-matured reasoning on how evolution works. Using natural selection to explain it might be just as good as saying that earth is not the center of the universe, but the sun is. Therefore we should not take it as granted and treat it like form of truth in our education system. And in fact that's the very reason I took hum321 at first place.


I always asked myself this too...

Katelyn's post on dogma has asked a very interesting question: " How much Darwinist theory is dogma" As I mentioned in my own evaluative response assignment, the reason why I find it is hard for me to accept those critiques on Darwin's theory is simple because, I have been taught in a society where such theory is generally accepted. Therefore it is influence on me has deeply rooted in my general understanding of the world.
After the introduction on the whole historical background on Darwin's family and the era he was lived in by doctor Ogden, it does makes me think that the sudden popularity of the evaluation through natural selection does somehow fits the interest of the politicians back then. The idea of fittest survival does to certain degree legitimize their will of overpower the rule of the traditional upper class. Therefore it makes me wonder if there is certain part of the theory is just simply some sort of embedded political propaganda to help the whings to gain even more popularity among the people. But then again since there isn't any better theory to explain the process of evaluation, so I would still believe in the idea of natural selection

Very interesting video! well done Bijan

After watching the video posted by Bijan "evolution isn't always perfect" It helped me a lot in term of understanding why some specie who carries certain rather inefficient trait can still survive the natural selection and past on their genes to the next generation. It is quite clear that lots of evolutionary trait we would consider as very "in-efficient" today could be some sort of compromise for other trait on that particular specie. When we pick out certain trait out off the contest and exam it individually, then it is quite easy to say, which would have been a "better" design. However if we put the factor of time and all the other environmental changes all into the equation, then it seems like asking for "too much" if we try to look for a perfectly efficient design. In fact they way I see the term "design" is that all specie is designed to change and adapt through time, rather than a fixed blue print. In this sense I would say a design is perfect if it managed to survival for millions of years in this ever-changing environment


thoughts on "Environmentalism and Darwin"

It is very thoughtful of Paige to bring up the environmental issue we human raised on this planet as specie. There is no doubt that we are mostly responsible for many extinctions of specie in the past few hundred years, especially after the industrial revolution.
Many species which have survived for thousands of years in our eco system has extinct during the past two hundred years. The reason is quite simple. Specie can keep survives by going through gradual changes and modifications which takes long period of time. There is one prerequisite to this evolution process that is the change in environment which the specie tries to adapt must also be a gradual process. Now lots wild is suffering from human's dramatic and rapid alternation of nature world, it is quite clear that if we do not slow down our so call economy advancement and spend more effort into protect the natural environment, then there will be a day when we have to face the consequences of our ignorance today.


thoughts on the post"G. B. Shaw and Natural Selection: His Desire to Improve Human Kind “

In this post I will further develop the conclusion of the post" G. B. Shaw and Natural Selection: His Desire to Improve Human Kind "
As the post mentioned Shaw's believe that in the process of evolution, human is that human have a choice that will help shape and influence future generation to come. In a way it is similar to what Darwin has proposed that species going through small modification over time in order to better adapt to the ever changing environment. However, using human as an example, the key differences is that from Darwin's perspective, human's self-consciousness has no bearing on physical Changes occurred on our specie. therefore is not a product of our attention; in other word what we want does not affect what we get. In Shaw's opinion on the other hand, it is quite opposite. The changes overtime on one specie is a result of constant strive for one particular trait, and it is those endless effort of bettering our-self which eventually lead us to the change.


Some thought regarding the Post “Shaw and WWI “

Some thought regarding the Post "Shaw and WWI "
Ava has brought out an excellent point by pointing out that the connection made by Shaw between Darwin's theory and the WWI. i find such connection was very strange myself as we. I honestly do not think it is the introduction of Darwin's theory all of sudden "enlightened" leaders around the world, and then they realized there is nothing better to do than expanding through invasion. If we look at the history that the conflict between either two competing nation, religion or any other kind of social group has been stopped. Therefore instead of saying the theory triggered the WWI, I would rather say it is merely explains why would such conflict occur, other just WWI but all the wars took place in the past as well as many more that will come in the future.


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Napoleon and the Oracle

One of the scenes acted out today in lecture that I found particularly intriguing was chapter three where the character Napoleon went to visit an oracle to find out how he could reign for longer because a previous ruler got advice from the oracle that was positive and caused him to receive votes and stay in power for a long time. Napoleon asked to be shown the oracle but the woman who he asked said that she WAS the oracle. Napoleon wants to see the woman’s face and she tells him that he doesn’t want to because he won’t be able to handle it and also she is 187 years old. She finally agrees to unveil herself and Napoleon is scared and begins to scream in fear and pain. The woman/oracle puts her veil back on and Napoleon apologizes for his outburst and they keep talking. After Napoleon wastes more of the oracle’s time, she gets impatient and gets a gun and shoots at him. He falls but rises again because she misses. Napoleon leaves and returns later on with a group of people and he has disguised himself. This time the oracle tells him that he should just die before his reign is over but Napoleon does not like this advice so he decides to go back to his people and lie about what the oracle told him so that he can be re-elected and so that the people will idolize him. I think that possibly the oracle gave the same advice to the previous ruler and the previous ruler also lied to the people so they would think he was more powerful that he actually was. It is easy to fool people when you are in a position of power because they assume that you are smarter than they are. This relates back to a previous post of mine that says that Baconians feel that knowledge is property and that it is their option to disseminate it however they please in an elitist fashion which is exactly what Napoleon did in this scene. When he got back to his people he gave them knowledge in the way that he wanted to. Baconians also feel that the world has to deal with the information that they are given, exactly in the way that the people that Napoleon was ruling over did so I guess that means that in this scene of Back to Methuselah by Bernard Shaw.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Drive: The surprising truth about what motivates us

I have here a short and most interesting video discussing human nature and the most effective means of production within our current economic/political situation. I believe this video ties into our discussion on several levels. (1) It comes from an economic perspective which relates directly to neo-liberal free market ideologies (notice the use of language throughout the video) and thusly Whiggism. (2) It incorporates the idea of the dialectic in that it suggests an alternative reality to what was once considered common sense. And (3) finally we see that people on a cognitive level are motivated by purpose rather than incentive which ties in to the practical beliefs promoted in Chesterton's Orthodoxy. It also seems to point towards the missing aspects of modern day society that Mary Migdley suggests is a problem in her essay "Against Humanism". Interestingly their means of developing the idea, sampling the participants and the other assessments are tested by the scientific method!
Take a look at the link and see for yourself:

Picking at the Baloney: A Reaction to the "Baloney Detection Kit"

Just a couple of points to make in regards to the "baloney detection kit" that was posted on this very blog not long ago. The short video goes through a series of ten rules to follow in order to verify whether something is worthy of consideration or not. Although I do believe the narrator makes a number of good points, he fails to meet the mark in some respects. For example test number 10, "are personal beliefs driving the claim?", states that if a person/entity is trying to claim something as truth and is driven by their beliefs they should scrutinized. I believe that everyone is driven by their beliefs to a certain degree, this scientist included. Here's why: It seems clear throughout the video that this particular sceptic has a bias. His bias is in favour of science. When discussing rule number 2, whether "the source makes the same claim" he uses 'new-age' types as an example of people who believe in not one but ALL of the following; ghosts, haunted houses and spirituality. Talk about a broad generalization! Not only that but he goes and to say that these new agey types believe in heretics for the sake of heresy. I'm not saying that this can't be true in some of the cases, but come on! Would EVERYBODY who believes in 'heresy' do it solely to maintain images? It's not very likely. He concludes this section by summarizing that "the point here is to have your brain open enough to accept radical new ideas, but not so open that your brains fall out". This is an interesting metaphor to attach to a concept that was not such much explained conceptually, but solely by use of an example. Under these circumstances these 'new age' types, or spiritualist are essentially shamed into being brainless, unthinking types who don't deserve any attention. The other rules for the most part were sound of mind and a reasonable set to adhere to when trying to regard something critically. However his concluding this little clip by saying that "science is the best tool ever devised for understanding how the world works and everybody knows that because they all go to doctors", which is both a statement filled with absolutist word choices and doesn't do justice to science in that it assumes that science is the best choice only because it is the most popular choice.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Butler VS. Darwin

While reading Samuel Butler’s “Deadlock in Darwinism” a few weeks ago, it was easy to see the arguments he was making against Darwin and it made me wonder if he had a personal grudge against Darwin or if it was purely about his work. After finding out the history between Darwin and Butler it is easier to understand the arguments. Butler had some issues with The Origin of Species and had tried to contact Darwin to discuss it but Darwin ignored his requests which most likely made Butler mad so Butler decided to write expansively about Darwin’s work in a negative way because of him being ignored. Butler makes an argument that Darwin did not publish original work and that he stole the ideas from other sources which seems legitimate at first but after looking deeper we realize that Darwin was just stating what other scientists had said but failed to publish and make public to the world. Darwin wanted the fame and the money so he wrote about evolution and natural selection in a very convincing way so people would not go against him. Butler argued that evolution and natural selection are common sense and Darwin kind of took the idea and stated it in his own words and people obviously accepted it because there is no way to deny evolution which I think was great. If you can publish work that nobody can deny then isn’t that the goal of all scientists and theorists?

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Semantic Attachments to Science

When discussing scientific fact and scientific theory it is important to recognize the adjective attached to the nouns 'fact' and 'theory'. In my last post I mentioned that our class had come to a consensus after much deliberation regarding the definitions of scientific fact and scientific theory. What was interesting was that the distinction had to be made in the first place. Consider the general understanding of 'fact' and 'theory' without the adjectival attachment. A fact is defined by Merriam-Webster dictionary as "something that has actual existence" or is "an actual occurrence". In other words it is "a piece of information presented as having objective reality". A theory on the other hand is defined as an "abstract thought: speculation" and "an unproved assumption", among other things it is a "belief, policy or procedure proposed or followed as the basis of action". Here both theory and fact are represented as being different albeit related words, each holding different semantic meanings. What's interesting is how the meaning of both fact and theory becomes blurred when attaching the adjective 'science'. The necessity to define and clarify the different meanings between the two terms indicated to me that the addition of the adjective 'science' gave more credence to the other terms associated with it.

The important thing to consider is the semantic 'weight' the word science carries along with it. It is true that the scientific method is vigorous and thorough, and today enters into almost every facet of our lives, but to what degree is it justified? Our means of regarding 'scientific theory' with considerably more validity then other 'theory' could exemplify a type of glorification of science. Considering that it has entered into almost every facet of our lives is all the more reason to criticize it objectively. I think we should recognize and appreciate the perspective science offers us however it is also important to understand that it is only just that: one perspective.

On Science Theory and Science Fact

On Science Theory and Science Fact

The following is a link to a video of Michael Shermer summarising Carl Sagan's Baloney Detection Kit. I believe that it is relevant to our discussion of scientific theory.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Theory vs. Fact

In class we discussed what is a scientific theory and what is a scientific fact and how are they different? I think that a theory is something that you think and maybe want to prove or disprove and a fact is something that is already proven. I also think that theories become facts once they are proven. Also, a theory is an idea and a fact is experiences. A theory is a precursor to a fact because in order to do the research to create a fact, you must first have a theory or idea about what you want to research.

We also discussed that if you have two theories that lead to a fact you should choose the simpler fact. I think that you should choose the more sensible theory though. The simpler one may be easier to understand but i feel like the more sensible theory, even if more complicated, would be a better option, but this is just my personal opinion.

It is only experience that allows us to know things and infer things was also a topic brought up in lecture and I feel like I completely agree. Without the experiences in our lives we cannot even imagine things to theorize about. Without experiences we are not going to be open to other ways of life or possibilities of pretty much anything unless we can see with our own eyes how it works for other people or how it could work in other situations.

Another Take on the Fallacy of Affect

Last class we discussed the difference between a 'scientific theory' and a 'scientific fact'. The class consensus was that in order for something to be considered a scientific fact it must manifest within reality (i.e. be an observable phenomenon). A scientific theory on the other hand is a means for expressing the potential factors and course of action taken in order to produce the phenomenon observed. Scientific fact is a truth, scientific theory is but one possible set of rules designed to express the necessary course of action taken.

I suggested that the fallacy of affect could be imposed onto scientific theory in order to recognize the potential weaknesses therein. When we first considered the fallacy of affect it was defined as: something (a theory or ideology) that is considered irrelevant or untrue if it doesn't work in practice. I suggested that the fallacy of affect could be applied to the relationship between 'scientific theory' and 'scientific fact'. Rather than justifying the illegitimacy of something (a theory or ideology) due to its ineffectiveness in practice, under these circumstances the fallacy of affect would recognize that just because something is effective in practice doesn't justify its inherent 'truth' and rightness. Dr. Ogden used the example of water boiling at 100 degrees Fahrenheit. He suggested that one day water could not boil under the specific conditions we've documented thus far. This example parallels my take on the potential fallibility of scientific theory. Under these circumstances the fallacy of the affect occurs not in the observable phenomenon (the affect), but in the explanation of how the phenomenon has come to be.

Science has created a means by which we can predict the steps taken to produce different phenomenon. The information gathered is particularly convincing because it can often be manipulated by humans and applied in different ways that work in practice. However it is also important to recognize that life is in flux and that we as humans are doing the best we can to understand the dynamic world around us.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Ockham’s Razor

Ockham's razor has been mentioned several times in class. In class Ockham's razor has been said to be "plurality should not be posited without necessity." This is the quote of William of Ockham for which Ockham's razor is based on. It has also been said to be interpreted as "the simplest explanation is the correct one." This is not at all a faithful representation of two grounds. First, Ockham's razor is not accurately represented by the simplest explanation. Second, this representation makes it out to be absolute; that being simple is sufficient for a theory to be true. This is a gross misrepresentation of Ockham's razor. This article will demonstrate why this interpretation of the principle of Ockham's razor is not entirely accurate.

While the term Ockham's razor does indeed find its origins with William of Ockham's sentiment "plurality should not be posited without necessity." However, William of Ockham did not come up with the term Ockham's razor, this was done 500 years later, and the specific phrasing of the principle as "entities are not to be multiplied unnecessarily" is credited to John Ponce. This demonstrates that Ockham's razor is not owned by one individual; many people have added their insights to shaping the principle over the centuries. As a result, one cannot take some purist interpretation which only looks at the ideas of William of Ockham when considering the scope of Ockham's razor, for not only has the razor evolved, but Ockham is not even the creator of the razor, merely the inspiration.

My understanding of the principle "entities are not to be multiplied unnecessarily," is that if one is presented two theories, both of which can equally explain and predict a specific phenomenon (i.e. all things being equal), then the one which introduces the fewest new assumptions (multiple entities) is preferred. This makes sense, for if all things are equal, that is, if the two competing theories can both predict and explain equally well, then assuming the existence of multiple entities becomes unnecessary, for the competing theory is just as successful yet without relying on an appeal to an unknown entity. You will find that this is not the simplest explanation. To say that it is the simplest explanation could mean a lot of things. Having one single answer for everything would be very simple; for instance "X is caused by magic" is a very simple answer in some sense, particularly when compared to explaining a phenomenon such as magnetism, however this is not favored by Ockham's for it requires the introduction of an unknown entity, namely magical powers. Thus Ockham's razor IS NOT the simplest explanation, unless your understanding of simplest in this context is the theory which introduces the FEWEST NEW ASSUMPTIONS. This is an important distinction because while the one which introduces the fewest new assumptions (multiple entities) can be seen as the simplest, the simplest can be seen as being many things other than the one with the fewest new assumptions. As a result, it is not entirely accurate to say Ockham's razor is the simplest.

With the distinction between the simplest theory and the one which introduces the fewest new assumptions made clear, this article will now consider the charge that Ockham's razor argues that "simplicity" is a sufficient condition for a theory to be true. Ockham's razor is not an absolute, nor does it maintain that a theory is necessarily true by virtue of its simplicity. Ockham's razor maintains that the "simpler" (again, simpler meaning the one which introduces the fewest NEW assumptions) is PREFERED. It is not a rule of logic, rather it is a heuristic, meaning that it is by definition does not necessitate truth, but only acts as a tool to help find a preferential theory, between two competing ones.

In conclusion, Ockham's razor is not accurately interpreted as merely the simplest explanation is the correct one. This is false on two grounds. First, it is not just the simplest, but more specifically, the one which introduces the fewest new assumptions. The second is that Ockham's razor does not necessitate truth. It makes no claims that "simplicity" is sufficient for truth. It is not a rule of logic, and makes no claims to. It is however, a helpful tool in preferring one otherwise equal theory over another.

Here is a short video on Ockham's razor; I encourage you to check it out:

Friday, November 5, 2010

Darwin was a Plagiarist...So What?

The charge that Darwin is unoriginal, or even a plagiarist, is one which has been made frequently in class in one form or another. There is ample evidence to support such a claim, and this article will not burden itself with the task of disproving the claim of Darwin's unoriginality, for it is plain to see that Darwin's ideas were not entirely novel . Rather, this article will explore the consequences of this charge for Darwinism.

First we will consider some other instances where individuals have been wrongly credited for the development of an idea, in order to draw some parallels between these other instances and that of Darwin.

An instance of an invention which is often credited to the wrong individual is that of Henry Ford and the automobile. Henry Ford did not invent the automobile. Nor was he the first to mass produce cars; in fact, he wasn't even the first to bring mass production of cars to north America, Oldsmobile was producing and selling cars to the American public before Ford. The automobile is not even an American invention, to the extent which it can be called an invention. It is true that the automobile is an assemblage of many different inventions, and that there are horseless carriages which utilize internal combustion and transmissions, and yet were not cars. Cars as we know them are a specific design for mechanised personal transportation, one of many at the time of its inception. The idea for how cars ought to be laid out was a novel idea, as appose to strapping an engine on to a carriage. It has become an enormously successful design for this purpose, and has proliferated throughout the world. However, the design of the modern automobile was indeed an invention, while it is perhaps not as fundamental as the internal combustion engine, it still an invention. If this invention can be attributed to anyone, it seems that Karl Benz was most instrumental in it development of the form of the modern car.

Not only did Henry Ford not invent the automobile, he also did not invent the other invention credited to him, the assembly line. It took many different individuals working for Ford to create the model T assembly line, and not simply Ford. Moreover, there had existed assembly lines well before that of the model T. In fact Oldsmobile had the first auto assembly line, as well as the first American auto manufacture.

Ford is not the only such misappropriation of credit for an invention, invention of the telephone has been credited to Alexander Gram Bell, when he did not invent the telephone; there had been several working telephone patents before his. Similarly, Thomas Edison did not invent the light bulb. There were patented light bulbs before his, however, Edison did develop a design for a light bulb which was more stable than predecessors and was consequently more successful.

There are many examples of inventions and discoveries which have not been credited to their true source. However, in each of the examples I have presented, the person who is credited was able to popularize the invention or discovery far better than the proper inventors. This is likely why it is so often the case that credit for inventions and discoveries are not ascribed to their true source, for the novel idea gets branded to its populariser, and not its discoverer. It seems as though Darwin has also been misappropriately credited to the theory of evolution, and natural selection in a very similar way as Ford to the assembly line or Edison and the light bulb.

It seems as though Darwin has been unjustly assigned credit for the theory of natural selection. What are the consequences of this for the theory of natural selection? Do light bulbs work any less because they may not have been invented by Edison? Did telephones stop working the moment you first heard that it was not Alexander Gram Bell who invented the phone? Of course the answer to these questions is no. While it is indeed an injustice to the proper discoverers/inventors in these cases of misappropriated credit, and they ought to be celebrated belatedly once it has been discovered. Moreover, I suspect that we will continue to learn of common inventions and discoveries in which the person we ascribe credit for it, is in fact not the actual inventor.

As a result, the issue of whether or not Darwin's work was original has little bearing on the merit of the theories he argues for. It is a very interesting point of history, but not particularly relevant in terms of the strength of the theory itself. The theory of natural selection and sexual selection must be judged on their own merits, and not that of its creator/populariser.

Not All Experiences Are Created Equal

In class Dr. Ogden put forward the notion that there are ideas (theory) and experience (fact), as his concluding remarks on the theory/fact distinction. While I agree that the distinction is a fair generalization, it seems to me that not all experiences are equal. Our senses our deeply flawed, anyone who has ever encountered an optical illusion can attest to this, for even when you know the mechanism for how the illusion works, you still can't even force your senses not to be deceived by it. I have a personal anecdote to offer which can shed light on the inequality of experience. I have personally witnessed, with my own eyes and in person up very close, Lance Burton levitate three stories into the air. I did not take from that experience that it is a fact that humans have the ability to levitate. I was not able to experience this in a controlled setting. There could have been many possible explanations for this experience, besides Lance Burton can fly in the air. I think that in order for me to derive FACT from such an experience, one would need to remove any other possible explanations for the experienced phenomenon. For instance one would need to control for the possibilities of cables from the ceilings (an explanation I find far more probable, than everything we know about human biology and physics is wrong, and people can will being lighter than air). I've also seen Penn & Teller shoot each other in the face with .357 magnums. Penn & Teller have never shot each other in the face with .357 magnum revolvers, I am convinced of this. I talked to Penn after the show, and he didn't appear to have a fatal gunshot wound to the face.

What i hope my example illustrates is that not all experiences are equal in their ability to derive facts. To do so one must control for other possible explanations or biases. This is why medical trials are ideally done in a double blinded and controlled fashion, as it allows for the testing of the single variable. The demand for control and replication makes "scientific" experience a fact generating mechanism. Conversely normal every day experience is not at all controlled, we have all had our senses deceive us at times, we all have biases, and by not controlling for these, normal experience does not generate facts, only anecdote.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Darwin is not a Social Darwinist

Two weeks ago we had a lecture by Dr. Bruce Alexander. I felt that this was one of the more interesting lectures I've seen in a long time. As a Darwinist, Dr. Alexander explained some of the views of Darwin in response to many of the critiques of Darwin that we’ve seen to date in our class. He went on to explain some common mistakes people make when referring to Darwin or trying to understand Darwin. One of his most important points was that Darwin was not a Social Darwinist which, at first, I found surprising. I did not realize that Darwin himself could not be a Darwinist because a Darwinist is someone who promotes Darwin and he cannot promote himself. I found this concept a bit confusing but once I understood it I found it to be very interesting.
I really like the idea of group selection which was one of the topics that Dr. Alexander brought up. He said it was almost dismissed by most scientists and social scientists. Groups of cooperative people are constantly at war said Dr. Alexander. This seems contradictory since cooperation means getting along and war means not getting along I suppose. If one group of humans selects to eliminate another group then traits are still being extinct. Why would we want to eliminate some qualities that only exist in some groups? Why would we want pure bred things? If we are so concerned with being the best and most powerful and smartest, why wouldn't we want to have certain traits from different groups and breed them together to combine their assets.

A Reaction to a Dawkins Reaction

In a response to the blog "Evolution's not Always Perfect" posted by the scientific approach blog team I think it's interesting to point out some of the terms that Dawkings' uses in order to express the notion of the non-existence of a 'designer'. Within the blog there is a video of Richard Dawkins narrating and assisting in a dissection of a giraffe's neck. Here we see an 'overly' long, 'inefficient' laryngeal nerve. We see that the nerve must travel a considerably longer distance then would seem 'economically feasible' as the nerve's starting point and end point are only a few inches apart. Dawkins suggests that "this is not an intelligent design" due to its inefficiency. He directly equates a designer to an engineer, saying that unlike an engineer "evolution can't go back to the drawing board" and thusly that "evolution has no foresight."
I think it is very important to mention here that although he does raise a good point in the fact that the laryngeal nerve is 'seemingly' inefficient, that is about the only valid observation that he makes. The problem with his argument is that he defines designer as engineer, when in reality it is the other way around. An engineer is a man, who follows man's cycle of invention through innovation and who does so through the use of design. Although he is a designer, an engineer still possesses all the other human qualities that a nurse, a doctor and a carpenter share, and with those the potential to err. As a means of remedying their errors, engineers go back to the drawing board. This is not only how engineers create greater, more efficient and more effective structure, but also the reason why there continues to be an improvement.
Evolution on the other hand is not man. We've understood it thus far through man's perspective by observing it and expressing our observations through speech and experimentation. It is not so much that evolution/the designer has no foresight, but not foresight that likens itself to that of human foresight.

The Dialectic and Different Discursive Methods

Something I haven't been able to shake since we've started these discussions revolving around Darwin is the prevalent themes of (1)the dialectical exchange of ideas and (2) the use of language in expressing one's intentions.
By the dialectic I am referring to the cycle of thesis-->antithesis-->synthesis and how ideas take shape by following this model. In essence it allows for the introduction of new realities and the squashing of old ones. Here we've seen an interesting exchange between a few men of upstanding academic accreditation react to the idea(s)that Darwin has offered to the world.
Not only do each subsequent author suggest that they do not agree with Darwin be it, Darwinian though, his methods, or Darwin's personal motivations, they also introduce a different manner(discursive method) in articulating their ideas. First consider Pope who through the use of analogy and metaphor rebuts Darwin's ideas. Then Butler comes along and literally scrutinizes every aspect of Darwin's delivery. Following Butler, Shaw synthesizes the information Butler reasonably handed out by the use of irony.
These different uses of languages are important to recognize as they set the cadre for the information each author introduces to us and thusly shapes our understanding of the potential reality they propose.