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Thread: Is The Force Behind Evolution Conscious ?

  1. #1 Is The Force Behind Evolution Conscious ? 
    Forum Freshman Beyondthought's Avatar
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    Good Day Everyone,

    I apologize if I am repeating an already existing Thread, however, this is my query: Is Evolution Conscious?

    Perhaps to some this will incur a no-brainer response of 'duh' although what is behind evolutionary changes? I look at this with great curiosity. At all stages of evolution, from the time when everything and anything that we know today existed as Bactria and Singular-Celled Lifeforms, to the jump from ape to man, what has given rise to the cause of the effect?

    Today we all have feet; a nice long relatively flat surface to help us move about easier: a member much more effective than the hand-like feet our ape cousins possess. Our ancient ape ancestors did not simply think to themselves 'feet would be nicer than these hands' and within a generation or two we all had feet. What is the hidden force trapped within DNA that ultimately tells a creature (or part of a creature) to change? I am not pointing a finger towards divinity here by any means; but how does DNA know it is time to change?


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    DNA doesn't "know," mutations just happen at random. sometimes they're good, more commonly they're bad. evolution would be a much quicker process otherwise.


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    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    I apologize if I am repeating an already existing Thread ...
    Far too many of them, sadly.

    what has given rise to the cause of the effect?
    Genetic diversity in populations and selection pressure. Given those two things (which are undeniable facts) then evolution is pretty much inevitable.
    ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat
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    Forum Freshman Beyondthought's Avatar
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    Ok. But how about another example: the flying squirrel.

    This creature's ancestors were great jumpers I would assume. The ones who were able to jump further ultimately were able to reproduce and keep breading these supper jumpers. However, what factor told this creature's biology that it should grow an extra layer of skin between its fore and back legs that extends from its midsection?

    Its hard for me to imagine that is is just an accident.
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    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Some had more skin and some had less - population diversity - just like some people are taller or have longer fingers than others. Those with more skin were able to glide further and this (apparently) gave them some survival advantage. So the offspring of successful individuals tended to have more skin. And so on.

    Maybe, at some point, there was a mutation that produced a flap of skin between the limbs (like some people have webbed fingers). Or maybe it was always just part of the range of forms.
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    ei incumbit probatio qui dicit, non qui negat
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    Forum Freshman Beyondthought's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Some had more skin and some had less - population diversity - just like some people are taller or have longer fingers than others. Those with more skin were able to glide further and this (apparently) gave them some survival advantage. So the offspring of successful individuals tended to have more skin. And so on.
    Ok, this makes more sense now. Funny as to why I was unable to view it from this perspective before. Thank you.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Some had more skin and some had less - population diversity - just like some people are taller or have longer fingers than others. Those with more skin were able to glide further and this (apparently) gave them some survival advantage. So the offspring of successful individuals tended to have more skin. And so on.

    Maybe, at some point, there was a mutation that produced a flap of skin between the limbs (like some people have webbed fingers). Or maybe it was always just part of the range of forms.
    this is what i wanted to say, just didn't have the time to think it out and type it
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    Force? What force, identify the force. DNA is not conscious enough that we can have a two way conversation, or there would be a line of the curious waiting to ask questions. I would be in that line. One of my questions would be, "why didn't you give me the code that you gave Pete Rose or Mickey Mantle?
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    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Ok. But how about another example: the flying squirrel.

    This creature's ancestors were great jumpers I would assume. The ones who were able to jump further ultimately were able to reproduce and keep breading these supper jumpers. However, what factor told this creature's biology that it should grow an extra layer of skin between its fore and back legs that extends from its midsection?

    Its hard for me to imagine that is is just an accident.
    It's not an accident: they're consciously trying to evolve into Batman.
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    Professor of Articulation Zesterer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Good Day Everyone,

    I apologize if I am repeating an already existing Thread, however, this is my query: Is Evolution Conscious?

    Perhaps to some this will incur a no-brainer response of 'duh' although what is behind evolutionary changes? I look at this with great curiosity. At all stages of evolution, from the time when everything and anything that we know today existed as Bactria and Singular-Celled Lifeforms, to the jump from ape to man, what has given rise to the cause of the effect?

    Today we all have feet; a nice long relatively flat surface to help us move about easier: a member much more effective than the hand-like feet our ape cousins possess. Our ancient ape ancestors did not simply think to themselves 'feet would be nicer than these hands' and within a generation or two we all had feet. What is the hidden force trapped within DNA that ultimately tells a creature (or part of a creature) to change? I am not pointing a finger towards divinity here by any means; but how does DNA know it is time to change?
    One fundamental law of information is that a closed-system can never truly self-replicate. Thats why a computer virus requires a host system to reproduce. So surely a creature being able to perfectly self-replicate breaks these laws? Maybe this is why things change. Errors get magnified over time. That's why in most species, it requires a male and a female to create young. But what about those creatures that reproduce with themselves? I can only assume that they have some form of genetic error like the rest of us that conforms to this law. If there are any errors in what I just said, please tell me

    Zesterer

    EDIT: I agree, this is an interesting topic. I did always think some areas of evolution were a bit shaky in terms of evidence. I guess we can only assume that these new "trends" in physical appearance of beings are caused by VERY bad genetic defects in something like every 10,000th individual, that is only successful in increasing the creatures ability to reproduce about 0.1% of the time. But it still seems like 3 billion years isn't long enough for this kind of thing to occur...
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    Malignant Pimple shlunka's Avatar
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    The force is behind everything, young padawan.
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    Conscious?

    everything evolves within or to fill niches
    the problem lies within the term conscious
    If we knew how that happens
    if we knew how thoughts originate
    perhaps
    then
    there could be an answer

    it is assumed that the brain is an electro-chemical wonder from whence thought and consciousness arise

    if indeed 99% of the universe is made up of plasma(an electrified gas) : The electric atmosphere: Plasma is next NASA science target

    can we be certain that it is not conscious?
    can we measure thought?
    can we know when and what it is?
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    It seems conscious, I'm sure. Life is just a reflection of its environment. You could look at a tree's image in a mirror and think "Wow. What a great artist, whoever drew this perfect picture of that tree." "Look at the attention to detail!!"
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    It's not an accident: they're consciously trying to evolve into Batman.
    Very funny this made me laugh. I needed a good laugh today.

    To Sampson: What do you ​mean by force? Gravity is a force; propulsion is a force; growth is ultimately a force. Evolution would be a force, or at the very least a process. I am endeavoring to learn and better comprehend selection and its role in evolution but I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
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    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    growth is ultimately a force
    Huh?

    Evolution would be a force
    Likewise.
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    I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
    Simple. It's the environment. In this scenario, A stays because current circumstances suit its survival and reproduction. G goes because it's apparently not well suited to the current environment - because it fails to thrive. G could "go" to another location if it's that kind of organism, but trees and their supporting soils can't move very far very fast if they don't use a distribution method of reproduction. So if they're overcome by prolonged drought or overcropping by another species or the local disappearance of their insect/bat/bee pollinators in their existing location, they can disappear entirely. And some animals are similarly limited by geography - the ability to move to another latitude or altitude because of cooling/warming/lack of food where they are can be impeded by the fact that they reach the seashore and can go no further in the needed direction or they move to the top of a mountain range and there's nowhere to go.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
    Maybe G tastes better than A. Or A can run faster. Or A has eaten all of G's food. Or A has eaten all of G. Or the climate has changed and it is too hot/cold/wet/dry for G but A is OK with it.

    Or, more generally: <some environmental factor> means that members of population A are more likely to [breed | survive] than members of population G.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zesterer View Post
    I guess we can only assume that these new "trends" in physical appearance of beings are caused by VERY bad genetic defects
    Some significant physical changes only require a small change in one gene. But it is pretty rare that evolution is caused by a single dramatic change like that.

    Much more important are the pre-existing variations in physical form within a population. Look at the people around you. Some will be tall and thin and so make good long distance runners. Some are stockier and would make better sprinters. Some have fair skin, some darker. Some are engineers, some are artists. Some are naturally resistant to this disease, others to that. And so on.

    Now, for any of those variations you can imagine a scenario where one group has a better chance of surviving or breeding. This would change the balance of types within the population. Isolate that population and, given time and more changes, they would be considered a different species from the original.

    (But of course, in general, the population benefits from having the variety)

    But it still seems like 3 billion years isn't long enough for this kind of thing to occur...
    Based on what? We have seen new species arise in very short time scales, so a few million years seems plenty of time for major changes to arise.
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    To Sampson: What do you ​mean by force? Gravity is a force; propulsion is a force; growth is ultimately a force. Evolution would be a force, or at the very least a process. I am endeavoring to learn and better comprehend selection and its role in evolution but I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...[/QUOTE]Ok, good, you have identified some forces or processes, you have some following great answers from the folks here. So, now you can answer your original question, NO, Evolution and the forces behind it are not conscious,.....as far as we know.
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    There is more diversity than meets the eye and changes occur over a long period of time.

    Also note that a given feature is the result of a process, so if the end result feature gets selected, sometimes so does the process that lead to it, and the process may lead to more dramatic changes in that direction than the simple end result might suggest. To simplify and illustrate, if there's a selection favoring big, its not just big that gets selected, but growth, so this might not lead just to big, but to big, bigger, even bigger, huge, etc until you get something thats vastly different from the small initial change.

    If the squirrels with skin layers get a nudge, it might not just be the exact static x amount of skin that gets a push, but also the process that caused extra skin, which in turn can accelerate the range of diversity in that direction faster than what might have been expected by looking at a tiny bit more of skin.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    growth is ultimately a force
    Huh?

    Evolution would be a force
    Likewise.
    Well, Force means the strength or energy as an attribute of a physical action or movement. So something growing would be a force. The collective energy exerted by the multiplying cells of an organism is a force which cases that it to grow.
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    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So something growing would be a force.

    Something growing would exert a force. Growth itself isn't a force.

    The collective energy exerted by the multiplying cells of an organism is a force which cases that it to grow.
    Which means that growth isn't a force, it's a result.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sampson View Post


    To Sampson: What do you ​mean by force? Gravity is a force; propulsion is a force; growth is ultimately a force. Evolution would be a force, or at the very least a process. I am endeavoring to learn and better comprehend selection and its role in evolution but I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
    Ok, good, you have identified some forces or processes, you have some following great answers from the folks here. So, now you can answer your original question, NO, Evolution and the forces behind it are not conscious,.....as far as we know.[/QUOTE]

    Yes, I am receiving a plethora of optimal responses from the people of this community. Not to kick a dead horse here but I would still be hesitant to slap a capital NO on my original query. It appears Selection is in tune to its surroundings. Perhaps evolution is not so conscious to the point that we can converse with it and that it has eyes and a brain to see and contemplate what it wants to change; although it does seem rather apt of its environment.

    If we humans tried desperately to live under water would we develop gills? Nothing in our apparent structure says we should have gills or even the geens for developing gills. Swimmers and divers can develop stronger lungs and thus can hold their breath long then most people. What if? What if for generations we lived in water, going onto dry land very seldom and strive to be submerged the majority of the time? Or, would be become like whales? air breathers with a marvelous ability to hold our breath for hours?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So something growing would be a force.

    Something growing would exert a force. Growth itself isn't a force.

    The collective energy exerted by the multiplying cells of an organism is a force which cases that it to grow.

    Which means that growth isn't a force, it's a result.
    Thank you. Then growth is a process.
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    That and dolphins haven't developed lungs. Doesn't mean that they won't in the next million years... but they could not develop them about as likely as develop them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    Only genes are passed on not developments made during life. If you cut of a mouses tail does it give birth to tail-less offspring?
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
    No it wouldn't. (Unless that obsession had a genetic component.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
    If they are genetically inclined toward muscle mass and are attracted to the opposite gender who also is, then their offspring have a good chance of carrying those traits. But that is just breeding, not new development of genes.
    If new genes developed from pressure like that, the fossil record would not show millions of years needed for heavy change.
    Such change would happen generation to generation, life on Earth would be a few thousand years old, and in two hundred years, we wouldn't look anything like our descendents.

    Although... Cleopatra looked like Robin Williams in drag...
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    Ok, I miss interpreted what PhDemon meant by developments. Of course, I am not arguing that new genes are being developed, I was stating that physical developments made during ones life can pass on to the next generation.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Of course, I am not arguing that new genes are being developed, I was stating that physical developments made during ones life can pass on to the next generation.
    Then you are arguing that new genes are being developed.
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    [QUOTE=Beyondthought;409055]
    Quote Originally Posted by sampson View Post


    If we humans tried desperately to live under water would we develop gills? Nothing in our apparent structure says we should have gills or even the geens for developing gills. Swimmers and divers can develop stronger lungs and thus can hold their breath long then most people. What if? What if for generations we lived in water, going onto dry land very seldom and strive to be submerged the majority of the time? Or, would be become like whales? air breathers with a marvelous ability to hold our breath for hours?
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
    No. In my lifetime, the average age has increased by 15 years. The average height in the US has increased by a couple inches. The World population has more than doubled. The average weight has increased more and 35% are obese. My HS football team averaged 165 lbs. The Alabama line this past National Championship averaged over 300 lbs. Is this evolution? No! No mutations, no selection, no evolution.
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhDemon View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Ok, I miss interpreted what PhDemon meant by developments. Of course, I am not arguing that new genes are being developed, I was stating that physical developments made during ones life can pass on to the next generation.
    This is incorrect.
    perhaps not
    see epigenetics
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    perhaps not
    see epigenetics
    Been down this road with you, before. You are a believer, but there is no actual evidence for epigenetics, in addition to the very severe contradiction of millions of years to show heavy change.
    If epigenetics had validity, we would see it in a much, much shorter fossil record.
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  35. #34  
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    believer?
    maybe, maybe not, ergo the word "perhaps"

    you might want to read:
    Epigenetics : Insight : Nature
    and/or
    Epigenetics - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    and/or
    Science Functional Genomics Resources: Epigenetics
    and/or
    Epigenetics
    and/or
    Epigenetics, DNA: How You Can Change Your Genes, Destiny - TIME

    as more studies/field data comes in, there seems to be something there
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    as more studies/field data comes in, there seems to be something there
    I've read all those before when you offered up links. The main problem is that most, if not all, of those studies failed to account for the reactivation of existing genes being responsible for observed changes and none demonstrated actual new Genes being created. Secondly, they only published the results of samples that had change while neglecting all the batches that showed no change. So that, too, is suggestive of the reactivation of existing genes rather than the creation of new genetic material.
    None can explain why evolution takes so ridiculously long and as you point out, something might be there is not strong evidence in the least, especially considering the major hurdles that the idea has.
    Lastly, they offer no mechanism for the creation of new genes as a response to environmental pressure.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    .... The main problem is that most, if not all, of those studies failed to account for the reactivation of existing genes being responsible for observed changes and none demonstrated actual new Genes being created. Lastly, they offer no mechanism for the creation of new genes as a response to environmental pressure.
    Neverfly:

    You completely missunderstand epigenetics.
    It ain't about creating new genes, it is all about when and how those genes are expressed........(sequencing, etc...)

    Bearing that in mind, please reread. I do believe that you've been blinded by your preconceptions.

    after re-reading think about the wrangel island mammoths, and the general trend of island isolated populations to become smaller.
    no gene change is necessary for those changes
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    It's not an accident: they're consciously trying to evolve into Batman.
    Very funny this made me laugh. I needed a good laugh today.

    To Sampson: What do you ​mean by force? Gravity is a force; propulsion is a force; growth is ultimately a force. Evolution would be a force, or at the very least a process. I am endeavoring to learn and better comprehend selection and its role in evolution but I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
    Evolution could be seen as an expression of the orderliness of the environment. Certainly when the environment exerts a selection pressure upon a population it is exerting a force in the sense that it is imposing order on the system. "Force" might not be the right word.

    Entropy questions are harder to adequately address than are energy questions. The order present in life forms doesn't come from nowhere. It comes from the orderliness of the environment itself.

    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by sampson View Post


    To Sampson: What do you ​mean by force? Gravity is a force; propulsion is a force; growth is ultimately a force. Evolution would be a force, or at the very least a process. I am endeavoring to learn and better comprehend selection and its role in evolution but I still can't help but ponder what is driving selection to say A stays and G needs to go...
    Ok, good, you have identified some forces or processes, you have some following great answers from the folks here. So, now you can answer your original question, NO, Evolution and the forces behind it are not conscious,.....as far as we know.
    Yes, I am receiving a plethora of optimal responses from the people of this community. Not to kick a dead horse here but I would still be hesitant to slap a capital NO on my original query. It appears Selection is in tune to its surroundings. Perhaps evolution is not so conscious to the point that we can converse with it and that it has eyes and a brain to see and contemplate what it wants to change; although it does seem rather apt of its environment.

    ?
    If a rock falls from a mountainside and hits your foot, you could describe that as "the mountain expressing its will to smash your foot" I guess.

    The environment causes the selection of mutations. It's an unconscious entity but it has an inherent nature and traits that are reflected in the selections it makes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
    No it wouldn't. (Unless that obsession had a genetic component.)

    What?!?!? Of course it would!

    People who weren't good physical specimens would have a harder time finding mates. People who were great physical specimens (but perhaps lacked other desirable traits) would have an easier time finding mates (in spite of those other shortcomings.) The offspring of people who were physically fit would be promoted to higher positions in society, thereby giving them even easier access to breeding potential.

    The end result would be a shift in the average physical fitness of the population as slightly more physically fit babies get born, and slightly fewer un-physically-fit babies get born. Over time, if the trend continued long enough, the effect could get to be quite pronounced.
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    .... The main problem is that most, if not all, of those studies failed to account for the reactivation of existing genes being responsible for observed changes and none demonstrated actual new Genes being created. Lastly, they offer no mechanism for the creation of new genes as a response to environmental pressure.
    Neverfly:

    You completely missunderstand epigenetics.
    It ain't about creating new genes, it is all about when and how those genes are expressed........(sequencing, etc...)

    Bearing that in mind, please reread. I do believe that you've been blinded by your preconceptions.

    after re-reading think about the wrangel island mammoths, and the general trend of island isolated populations to become smaller.
    no gene change is necessary for those changes
    I know what epigenetics is and epigenetics is not about No Gene Change.
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    Quote Originally Posted by sculptor View Post
    Granted. It appears there's multiple usage out there:
    The second meaning of “epigenetics” is more recent, and involves actual changes in the DNA itself that are not based on mutational changes in nucleotides, but in environmental modifications of nucleotides—things like methylation of nucleotide bases or changes in DNA-associated proteins like histones—that can temporarily modify genes and affect their actions. I say “temporarily,” because such environmental modification of DNA, while it can be adaptive, is not usually passed on from one generation to the next. For example, we get our genes in pairs—one from mom and one from dad—but they can be differentially “marked” (the technical term is “imprinted”) during the formation of sperm and eggs, and so the copy from dad can act differently from the copy coming from mom. This imprinting is probably due to natural selection: scientists like David Haig have argued that the different and conflicting “interests” of paternal versus maternal genes has, through natural selection, molded the way they are imprinted, allowing them to act in different ways in the embryo. But an “imprinted” gene is reset each generation: the imprinting disappears and has to re-form depending on which sex the gene is in.
    Is “epigenetics” a revolution in evolution? Why Evolution Is True
    Epigenetics: The Revolution That Wasn't - Forbes
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post

    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Beyondthought View Post
    So then you argue that a group of people who for generations were obsesses with bodybuilding would not give rise to offspring who are more physically developed?
    No it wouldn't. (Unless that obsession had a genetic component.)

    What?!?!? Of course it would!

    People who weren't good physical specimens would have a harder time finding mates. People who were great physical specimens (but perhaps lacked other desirable traits) would have an easier time finding mates (in spite of those other shortcomings.) The offspring of people who were physically fit would be promoted to higher positions in society, thereby giving them even easier access to breeding potential.

    The end result would be a shift in the average physical fitness of the population as slightly more physically fit babies get born, and slightly fewer un-physically-fit babies get born. Over time, if the trend continued long enough, the effect could get to be quite pronounced.
    Brain power has always been the winner in evolution of primates, in fact, Homo Sapiens are here today instead of Neanderthals for that very reason (theory).
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    Quote Originally Posted by sampson View Post
    Brain power has always been the winner in evolution of primates, in fact, Homo Sapiens are here today instead of Neanderthals for that very reason (theory).
    True, but there's no hard and fast rule that says that a physically fit person has to be dumb.

    Selection can be on the basis of more than one criteria (and usually is.) However, each criteria changes the amount of representations a trait will have in the population. If we select for more intelligence, raw physical strength, and say.... freckles, then all three traits will gradually become more prevalent.

    The only issue is which group is having the most (surviving) babies, really. In the modern world, selection is favoring uneducated people, because uneducated population groups are having the most babies. That's, of course, not a genetic trait, but the effect is basically the same as if it were.
    Some clocks are only right twice a day, but they are still right when they are right.
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    What?!?!? Of course it would!

    People who weren't good physical specimens would have a harder time finding mates. People who were great physical specimens (but perhaps lacked other desirable traits) would have an easier time finding mates (in spite of those other shortcomings.) The offspring of people who were physically fit would be promoted to higher positions in society, thereby giving them even easier access to breeding potential.

    The end result would be a shift in the average physical fitness of the population as slightly more physically fit babies get born, and slightly fewer un-physically-fit babies get born. Over time, if the trend continued long enough, the effect could get to be quite pronounced.
    Why do you think the babies born to those who are physically fit are more likely to be physically fit themselves?

    That seems to assume that physical fitness is a function of genetics (i.e. inheritable). Of course, like most things, there may be a genetic component.

    But more importantly, it assumes a correlation between inherent physical fitness and an obsession with body building. Which sounds somewhat implausible. If anything, it could be argued that if some people are more likely to be physically fit because of their genes, then that might mean that those individuals have less need for exercise.

    The other aspect is sexual selection (which I did think about). If the unnatural bodies of people obsessed with body building were more attractive to the opposite sex, then that could select in favour of both that "obsession" gene (assuming such a thing exists) and the "attracted to grossly deformed bodies" gene. This could, over generations, lead to ever increasing distortions of the body of sort that led to peacock's tails and other silly things.

    [Apologies to anyone who is keen on body building (from either side); the exaggeration is just there to highlight the absence of correlation to physical fitness. ]
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by sampson View Post
    Brain power has always been the winner in evolution of primates, in fact, Homo Sapiens are here today instead of Neanderthals for that very reason (theory).
    True, but there's no hard and fast rule that says that a physically fit person has to be dumb.

    Selection can be on the basis of more than one criteria (and usually is.) However, each criteria changes the amount of representations a trait will have in the population. If we select for more intelligence, raw physical strength, and say.... freckles, then all three traits will gradually become more prevalent.

    The only issue is which group is having the most (surviving) babies, really. In the modern world, selection is favoring uneducated people, because uneducated population groups are having the most babies. That's, of course, not a genetic trait, but the effect is basically the same as if it were.
    Since the domestication of plants and animals, food gathering is not a factor in evolution of mankind, and the farmers and ranchers have had more children, which has resulted in a World Population of 7+ B. This is where all the Intelligence has led us, over population. When this will crash and what will emerge is the question now.
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