Notices
Results 1 to 61 of 61

Thread: Have we ever created life?

  1. #1 Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Well, my question is as stated. Have we ever created life? And i mean from something that isn't living or never was. As in has anyone ever taken some elements, and given them life? Even in the most basic form (what is the most basic form?)?


    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  2.  
     

  3. #2  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    1: this is as good a location as any, and better than most.

    2. No. We have never created life.

    3. We haven't even come close.

    4. If someone mentions Stanley Miller and Harold Urey as 'coming close' I shall throw an emotional wobbly that will cause seismic shockwaves around the planet.

    5. What we have done is to begin to collect pieces of the jigsaw puzzle. At the moment we are not even sure if the pieces are from the same puzzle. We certainly do not have all the pieces and we have not begun to assemble them in any meaningful way.

    6. We are making progress and eventaully we shall succeed.

    7. The most basic form of life is much simpler than anything around today. Why? Even the simplest of today's life is very complex and could not have originated spontaneously. There had to be simpler, earlier 'beasties'. These got eaten up and supplanted by the more complex forms.


    Reply With Quote  
     

  4. #3  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Thank you, that was quite a fulfilling reply. Aha! Now I remember the word I was looking for, Amino Acids. Saw it in Star Trek, don't hurt me haha. So what is wrong with the Miller/Urey experiment? (just googled it because you mentioned it)

    http://www.chem.duke.edu/~jds/cruise...gy/miller.html

    From the link it seems like they made a bit of progress, but I will not say they came close in fear of planetary-wide seismic shock waves .

    I see what you mean by current life being wayyy more complex then the 'first life'. I think all life uses something like DNA, RNA or some protein sequence (sorry if I sound idiotic), which obviously couldn't be spontaneously created.
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  5. #4  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    So what is wrong with the Miller/Urey experiment? (just googled it because you mentioned it)
    First, I am delighted that my subtle trick of encouraging you to check up on Miller-Urey worked.
    Now, nothing at all was wrong with the experiment. It was a brilliant experiment, conceived with true genius and implemented with flair and precision. Nor do I have any problem with the conclusions reached by the experimenters.
    What infuriates, frustrates and plunges me into despair, are the interpretations that others have made of the results. The implication of many who quote the experiment is that it was only a step or two away from generating actual life. Rubbish!
    As you pointed out it produced amino acids. Now these are hugely important. Proteins are built from amino acids and one could argue that proteins are life. (Which would make DNA and RNA merely the plans for life.) However, creating life is not just about making a few proteins, nor even manking a few useful proteins. These have form part of an integrated system that does things. Energy has to be provided to allow these things to be done, so there has to be a metabolism. And there must be a way of repeating this behaviour in the future, so an instruction set (our DNA based genes) is needed. And the whole lot should be safely locked away in a protected environment that, for convenience, we shall call a cell.
    And putting all that together is a long, long way from the Miller-Urey experiment. Moreover, it is entirely possible, perhaps even more likely, that those necessary prebiotic molecules were delivered from space by comets.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  6. #5  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    I see, thank you again. Is there a theorized sequence of events, such as elements+electricity -> amino acids -> proteins -> etcetera? Or at least an agreed upon outline?
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  7. #6  
    Guest
    I remember seeing in a documentary that a Victorian Scientist playing with electricity noted in his experiments the constant presence of tiny white 'bugs' whose origin he could not explain, when he published his papers and made reference to this phenomina, he was ridiculed , branded as 'boasting he had created life, and his reputation was ruined, he dissappeared from science. I cannot remember the guy's name or any other details, anybody know?

    THis may seem off topic, but it is a case where others have alledged life was created, even when the Author was at pains to point out otherwise.

    Another point I would like to make is, IF you could assemble all the atoms in the correct order of a primitive bacterium, would it be alive or dead at the completion, would it decay faster than you could build it?

    Take a CO2 can of freezer, empty it on a beetle, freeze it into a block of dry ice, thaw it out and it walks away, was it dead for a while?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  8. #7  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Interesting point. About the beetle. On the first topic though, I could see the scientist contaminating his work somehow and creating life from dead or already alive substances? I would like to know the scientists name though, just because he was discarded at the time doesn't mean he didn't make any progress.
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  9. #8 Life is the consequence of possibility and time. 
    Forum Professor leohopkins's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Dulwich, London, England
    Posts
    1,417
    People. People. People. : - )

    The experiment referred to earlier on in this thread; I read about it too although I have to say not ALL chemicals or even forces were present within the experiement than on the actual earth, furthermore the experiment took place in a tiny enclosed enivronment; thus containing far far far less molecules than is available on a planet.

    So.......think about all of those atoms and molecules, combining and recomibing through the natural pressures of change; gravity, magnetism etc. All you have to do is to give these constant changes time and bingo; at one particular time you have a molecule that will attract other moleules and self replicate; (this is life revving up) then it may break up because it doesnt attract or create other necessary molecules and so the "chain" is destroyed; but it only takes one time for it to come together; just once for it to form then self-replicate then form again and suddenly natural selection is on its way.

    For those of you still interesting in this thread; I would like you to research the "Bacteria Flagellum" and give me your thoughts on THAT !!

    Leo
    The hand of time rested on the half-hour mark, and all along that old front line of the English there came a whistling and a crying. The men of the first wave climbed up the parapets, in tumult, darkness, and the presence of death, and having done with all pleasant things, advanced across No Man's Land to begin the Battle of the Somme. - Poet John Masefield.

    www.leohopkins.com
    Reply With Quote  
     

  10. #9  
    Forum Junior
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    240
    God created the earth and heavens so it was perfect not only to sustain life to also to create endless fascination. He then decided to fill the earth with living creatures that could only breed within their own species and thus creating great variety.

    The structure of all living creatures was designed to avoid evolution so as to protect each species so that it could reproduce. Thats why all creatures can only reproduce their own. with avriety.

    God created life for a reason. As humans we have the ability to make choices and we will be judged on those choices. God however gave us a wonderfull book, the bible, to help guide us through life. To teach us the benefit ourselves.

    It important that we use our lives tos earch for truth and the bible ahs those answers.

    Science is at one with the bible on creation and how we reproduce. Sadly evolutionism is at odds with our current knowledge about biology and life as a whole. Im not sure how evolutionists deal with this. But as a christian i feel the truth is something to cherish not to fear.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  11. #10 God 
    Forum Professor leohopkins's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Dulwich, London, England
    Posts
    1,417
    All right then; What is "God" made from ?

    Science without religion is lame but religion without science is blind. (Albert Einstein)
    The hand of time rested on the half-hour mark, and all along that old front line of the English there came a whistling and a crying. The men of the first wave climbed up the parapets, in tumult, darkness, and the presence of death, and having done with all pleasant things, advanced across No Man's Land to begin the Battle of the Somme. - Poet John Masefield.

    www.leohopkins.com
    Reply With Quote  
     

  12. #11  
    Guest
    You guys are drifting off topic, the question is "Has man created life" ie in a lab or whatever, now please arguments for religion in the religious section this is biology. No more please.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  13. #12  
    Forum Junior
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    240
    Man is incapable of creating life, apart from of course reproducing. This happens every day within the strict rules of biology which state "all living creatures can reproduce their own kind with great variety."

    Life is so complex that we are incapable of creating new life or new creatures that have never been seen before. MODERATOR Deleted - off topic, irrelevant and discussed elsewhere. Megabrain. Please PM a mod if you are unhappy.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  14. #13  
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,893
    Well, my question is as stated. Have we ever created life? And i mean from something that isn't living or never was. As in has anyone ever taken some elements, and given them life? Even in the most basic form (what is the most basic form?
    If you consider viruses to be alive, then yes; we can make complete viruses "from scratch" using nothing but non-living stock chemicals.

    There has also been impressive work done on creating self-replicating organic molecules that are very complex (but are entirely new molecules, not copies of things found in nature) and are able to take up ingredients from their environment to copy themselves, allowing them to "reproduce". These are arguably "alive", but are far simpler than a living cell. But since the biochemists who made them were designing from scratch rather than simply re-creating something complex that's already known to work in nature, it's a very impressive achievement.

    Man is incapable of creating life, apart from of course reproducing. This happens every day within the strict rules of biology which state "all living creatures can reproduce their own kind with great variety."

    Life is so complex that we are incapable of creating new life or new creatures that have never been seen before.
    This is nothing but the same sort of "it's hard, so we could never do it" reasoning that people used to explain why we could never travel faster than sound, go to the moon, or build a computer that plays chess well.

    We actually have a very good idea of how life works right down to the molecular level. The only thing stopping us from creating living things "from scratch" is a lack of sufficiently sophisticated chemical synthesis techniques. We know how the pieces go, we just don't have a way to arrange them properly. But the sophistication of synthetic chemistry is increasing all the time, and there's no reason to believe that at some point in the future when we are much better at manipulating matter on a molecular level we won't be able to create living things from a pile of stock chemicals.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  15. #14  
    Forum Junior Powerdoc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Posts
    270
    One day, we will be able to create live.
    It's just a matter of time

    The question is :
    what kind of life will we create first ? :
    - biological life (unicellular pattern)
    - silicon life.

    I wonder how we will be able to know, when a computer reach the point of being a living object.
    A computer will be a living thing, when it will start to think it's own way, and just not be a machine.
    But does a perfect logic device, can be life ? If someone is totally devoted to logic, then he has not free will : because logic will dictate each of it's action. All he will do, will be totally predictable, and could be done exactly the same way, with a computer clone.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  16. #15 Definition of Life 
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    1
    There is much debate on whether our definition of life (MRSGREN) is suffice. Before we can talk about this, we must first elucidate a true definition which satisfies all.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  17. #16  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Truth1010, I'm asking for a scientific approach to the question not a religious lecture. I am not going to belittle your beliefs, but I don't share them.

    Is there a scientific research group out there actively trying to create life?

    Quote Originally Posted by Powerdoc
    One day, we will be able to create live.
    It's just a matter of time

    The question is :
    what kind of life will we create first ? :
    - biological life (unicellular pattern)
    - silicon life.

    I wonder how we will be able to know, when a computer reach the point of being a living object.
    A computer will be a living thing, when it will start to think it's own way, and just not be a machine.
    But does a perfect logic device, can be life ? If someone is totally devoted to logic, then he has not free will : because logic will dictate each of it's action. All he will do, will be totally predictable, and could be done exactly the same way, with a computer clone.
    That is true, I did not consider silicon life. I would have to say at the rate we're going silicon life is much more likely to come before biological life.
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  18. #17 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    1,674
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    Well, my question is as stated. Have we ever created life? And i mean from something that isn't living or never was. As in has anyone ever taken some elements, and given them life? Even in the most basic form (what is the most basic form?)?
    No we have not. Not even in the "from something living" way. Having a baby isn't making life it is continuing it. When a cell divides is it making life? No, it is dividing. That is all that ever happens. Whether life was "created" or magically "evolved" it has never been capable of creating more life (to our knowledge). Creating life is so complex that, like Ophiolite about the puzzle thingy, who knows how much we know or how much more we need to know. Like one of my teachers said, 'the more you know, the more you realize you don't know'.
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
    Reply With Quote  
     

  19. #18  
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    That is true, I did not consider silicon life. I would have to say at the rate we're going silicon life is much more likely to come before biological life.
    Have a look at 'Organic transistors' on google...
    Silicon has all but reached it's theoretical maximum densisty you will need transistors at an'atomic' scale at th very least'

    You won't be able to make any sort of silicon life that can exist 'independently' and reproduce - that would require [the 'form'] to have virtually all of man's current technical skills. [ that is, not in this century, probably not in the next few either].
    Reply With Quote  
     

  20. #19 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,893
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    No we have not. Not even in the "from something living" way. Having a baby isn't making life it is continuing it. When a cell divides is it making life? No, it is dividing. That is all that ever happens. Whether life was "created" or magically "evolved" it has never been capable of creating more life (to our knowledge). Creating life is so complex that, like Ophiolite about the puzzle thingy, who knows how much we know or how much more we need to know. Like one of my teachers said, 'the more you know, the more you realize you don't know'.
    Again, I feel I should point out that we have created complete viruses from scratch non-living chemicals. Whether or not viruses are alive is debatable (indeed, biologists debate it all the time), but we are much closer than you seem to think. We can create things that reproduce, respond to their environment, and evolve - so even if we can't technically create life yet, we are certainly straddling the borderline at which our creations could be considered alive.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  21. #20  
    Guest
    Another interesting point I would like to add is that forensic science can 'multiply' short strands of DNA [as I understand it] to produce such quantities as can be used for comparison, this could be another piece of the jigsaw, of which we are still a number of parts missing. I think it's interesting that we do not know how far away we are from producing some form of life, it could be a few years or a few millenia.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  22. #21 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Scifor Refugee
    Again, I feel I should point out that we have created complete viruses from scratch non-living chemicals. Whether or not viruses are alive is debatable (indeed, biologists debate it all the time), but we are much closer than you seem to think. We can create things that reproduce, respond to their environment, and evolve - so even if we can't technically create life yet, we are certainly straddling the borderline at which our creations could be considered alive.
    "From scratch"? So far as I know artificial viruses have been constructed only by using mail-order "kits" of genes. For example: http://www.geocities.com/giantfideli...rder_kits.html

    How does that qualify as being made "from scratch"?

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  23. #22 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Professor
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    1,893
    Quote Originally Posted by Crabby
    "From scratch"? So far as I know artificial viruses have been constructed only by using mail-order "kits" of genes. For example: http://www.geocities.com/giantfideli...rder_kits.html

    How does that qualify as being made "from scratch"?

    —Crabby
    The genes can be synthesized from stock chemicals.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  24. #23 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Scifor Refugee
    Quote Originally Posted by Crabby
    "From scratch"? So far as I know artificial viruses have been constructed only by using mail-order "kits" of genes. For example: http://www.geocities.com/giantfideli...rder_kits.html

    How does that qualify as being made "from scratch"?

    —Crabby
    The genes can be synthesized from stock chemicals.
    What stock chemicals, my I ask? Do you mean stock supplies of nucleotides? RNA? DNA? If I am not mistaken, those stock chemicals would need to have biogenic origins, would they not? If so, that would disqualify those synthetic viruses from being "made from scratch."

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  25. #24  
    Guest
    Guys, you are drifting off topic, you are free to start a new topic on the meaning of "from scratch" - in which case I'll argue you need first to create a universe from 'nothing' - or you can PM eachothre.

    From scratch is a loose term at best, if you do not have a car and you build one 'from scratch' does this mean you have to mine the ore to make the tools to mine ore....
    No don't answer except by er :wink: PM -
    Reply With Quote  
     

  26. #25  
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Excuse me for being a bother, but the verb "created" in this thread's title is a bit troubling. If this thead seriously addresses the question "Have we ever created life?," then the question of "from scratch" seems awfully relevant to me. There are really two questions embedded in this thread's title: Have we ever created life from biogenic sources? and Have we ever created life from abiogenic sources? Is there any thread on this forum where biogenic vs. abiogenic origins can be discussed?

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  27. #26  
    Guest
    If you want to debate that "if we have not created it from scratch then we have not created it", or "if not created from scratch then 'it don't count' fine, that is acceptable. If you wish to debate the meaning of 'from scratch' without relating it to the topic that is 'off-topic'.

    So you can also argue the following :-

    If you take bits from a cat or cat's and make an elephant - then you have created life.

    and:

    The original poster did not mention scratch, so as far as I am concerned it is irrelevant, also, the raw materials were not set as a pre-requisite - therefore when a person is revived who was dead, one may argue that life has been created - if a hospital theatre is a lab :wink:

    THese last two items are not neccessarily my personal views, they are 'throw ins'
    Reply With Quote  
     

  28. #27  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    Quote Originally Posted by Crabby
    Excuse me for being a bother, but the verb "created" in this thread's title is a bit troubling.
    I agree with you completely. It is also central to the discussion as to what 'from scratch' means. True, as MegaBrain notes, the term is vague, but the territory it covers is not.

    Scifor Refugee has pointed that, in some respects, we are close to creating life. Crabby has noted that strictly this is not true, since we are merely assembling components of biogenic origin in novel ways.

    This discussion is exactly germane to the original question, since it explores the nature of the experiments being conducted and the extent to which they rely upon existing organic molecules/structures/metabolic pathways.

    My definition of 'creating life' requires identifying and establishing the conditions in which
    a) Metabolisms can be established
    b) Useful molecules can be created
    c) These two suites of processes can be controlled
    d) The instructions for the above can be replicated

    On that basis we are a million miles away. If creating life just means making a new kind of 'bug' by assembling DNA in a novel sequence and packaging it in a nice protective, lipid membraned 'cell', then we are almost there. I don't count that as creating life, since it is not done from scratch.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  29. #28 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Guest
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    Well, my question is as stated. Have we ever created life? And i mean from something that isn't living or never was. As in has anyone ever taken some elements, and given them life? Even in the most basic form (what is the most basic form?)?
    I see I should have read this a little more slowly and taken more notice of the middle two lines, - from 'elements' to me suggests taking individual atoms and building life - the answer is NO [at least I am not aware of it] -

    If from 'atoms' isn't from scratch then I don't know what is.

    I Defer.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  30. #29 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Quote Originally Posted by Megabrain
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    Well, my question is as stated. Have we ever created life? And i mean from something that isn't living or never was. As in has anyone ever taken some elements, and given them life? Even in the most basic form (what is the most basic form?)?
    I see I should have read this a little more slowly and taken more notice of the middle two lines, - from 'elements' to me suggests taking individual atoms and building life - the answer is NO [at least I am not aware of it] -

    If from 'atoms' isn't from scratch then I don't know what is.

    I Defer.

    Yes "creating" and "from scratch" are debatable terms, as well is life. Reminds me of a quote in someones signature that goes something along the lines of you haven't made a pie from scratch until you recreate the big bang. I meant to be as clear as possible in my original post. My question was meant to ask has anyone taken elements, as in the ones on the periodic table, and made a living structure from them? Even if it is amazingly simple and has no practicality or ability to survive on earth. My question has been answered, and the answer is no.

    Also, on the note of viruses. I don't want to start a debate on if they're living or not, but how do we go about making them? Do they start with a virus and modify it or do they actually go about creating the structures?

    Oh and I think one of my other questions got lost in the from scratch debate. Is there an active research group trying to do what I said? Or do most scientists notice it's too complicated and just go on with trying to modify existing life?
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  31. #30  
    Guest
    I am aware that IBM using a special microscope once reproduced their logo by depositing singe atoms on a substrate. As I understand it even the simplest form of life comprises of billions if not trillions of atoms, if you could build a structure at a rate of 1 atom per minute - 24 hours a day - 365 days a year so to build a human with 7*10^27 atoms at 5*10^5 a year would take you about 1.4*10^22 years - the universe is only about 1.4*10^10 years - so a mere Trillion time the age of the universe - hence the No.

    Source: for number of atoms in the body:- http://education.jlab.org/qa/mathatom_04.html
    Reply With Quote  
     

  32. #31 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    Yes "creating" and "from scratch" are debatable terms, as well is life. Reminds me of a quote in someones signature that goes something along the lines of you haven't made a pie from scratch until you recreate the big bang....
    No need to recreate the universe. I would be convinced if life could be coaxed out of a Miller-Urey type experiment. In my lexicon those amino acids were generated "from scratch," even though the experimental soup contained methane and ammonia. By comparison I don't see methane and ammonia as equivalent to the nucleic acids used to manufacture viruses.

    If scientists succeed in making synthetic life "from scratch." they will have to learn how to make macromolecules from scartch and then wait around while the genes sort themselves out and take over cellular metabolism. Nobel Prize assured!

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  33. #32  
    Forum Bachelors Degree charles brough's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    joplin MO USA
    Posts
    425
    scifor posted a good summation of how close we have already come to building organic matter into living cells .

    Note, I did not use the religious term "create" (life) because nothing is created. Everything arises thru cause and effect!!

    The rabid religious among us say it will never happen, but they said the same thing early last century about never being able to build organic matter. We did, and then everyone forgot about all the pessimism.

    When we do build new organisms, then the rabid-religious will say we can never build humans---that is, if they last that long.


    charles, http://humanpurplose.simplenet.com
    Brough,
    civilization-overview (dot) com

    --------------------
    There are no accidents, just someone taking too much risk. . . (CB)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  34. #33  
    Forum Professor Zwolver's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Netherlands
    Posts
    1,489
    :?

    Define, creating life..

    Is saving a life not creating one, or killing someone creating someone others life.

    Humans can create life, that's called reproduction. But did we start it? NO, but we kept on living and justgave it trought..

    Still isn't that the same as creating life on a certain level?

    The first real life we'll be able to create will be AI..

    Cheers
    The past teaches, the present watches and the future learns.

    Though religion is a concept that simply can not be ignored. The fact that a deity could stand idly by when one part of his creation slaughters another part, simply for his namesake, is a mystery i doubt theologist would dare touch.

    ~Zwolver...
    Reply With Quote  
     

  35. #34  
    Guest
    AI wise, we already have in the form of robots with an IQ of about 24 (or was it 12?). 8)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  36. #35 Entering the Post-Darwinian Era 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Zwolver
    Define, creating life...The first real life we'll be able to create will be AI.
    I tend to agree. But I would call it "virtual life" instead. Maybe it will be an extention of biological life; maybe we are the larve of a splendid new butterfly. I think practical AI will happen eventually, and so do those who say we are entering the Post-Darwinian Era.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  37. #36  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    Quote Originally Posted by Zwolver
    :?

    Define, creating life..

    Is saving a life not creating one, or killing someone creating someone others life.

    Humans can create life, that's called reproduction. But did we start it? NO, but we kept on living and justgave it trought..

    Still isn't that the same as creating life on a certain level?

    The first real life we'll be able to create will be AI..

    Cheers
    In relation to this thread that would be the continuation of life, or at least from my perspective. In reproduction you only create more life from existing life, not from something dead, or more specifically elemental.


    As I said before, the original question has been answered. The answer is no though it seems plausible we may do it sometime in the future...
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  38. #37  
    Forum Bachelors Degree charles brough's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    joplin MO USA
    Posts
    425
    To "create" is to make something out of nothing and hence is outside of the sphere of cause and effect. That means using the word is unscientific.

    We have not yet manufactured living cells out of non-living cells. We did learn to manufacture organic compounds. The next step and one we will eventually accomplish will be to manufacture living cells and tissue out of those organic compounds.

    charles, http://humanpurpose.simplenet.com
    Brough,
    civilization-overview (dot) com

    --------------------
    There are no accidents, just someone taking too much risk. . . (CB)
    Reply With Quote  
     

  39. #38 "Creating" life 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Probably this matter of "creating" life "from scratch" is only academic. I can see how it pertains to the origin-of-life question, but when we finally do manufacture living cells we'll most likely use biogenic materials.

    I take notice that synthetic RNA is already here, and that synthetic viruses have already been manufactured from mail-order gene kits. Synthetic cellular life may not be that far off.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  40. #39 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    Quote Originally Posted by Kabooom
    Oh and I think one of my other questions got lost in the from scratch debate. Is there an active research group trying to do what I said? Or do most scientists notice it's too complicated and just go on with trying to modify existing life?
    There is agroup who are trying to construct a microorganism by assembling strands of DNA with the requisite genes. I imagine they would then insert this DNA into an existing cell. They are apparently close to achieving their aim. I do not recall where they are based, but read an article about this in New Scientist around six months to eighteen months ago.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  41. #40 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    There is agroup who are trying to construct a microorganism by assembling strands of DNA with the requisite genes. I imagine they would then insert this DNA into an existing cell. They are apparently close to achieving their aim. I do not recall where they are based, but read an article about this in New Scientist around six months to eighteen months ago.
    Almost sure this has been brought up before: The Pentagon (DARPA) is funding research to build pathogenic viruses like the poliovirus. Of course viruses are NOT microorganisms, but they're awfully close.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  42. #41  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    No. It's not that work. It's another group. I have a vague recollection they are at Oxford. I'm about to subscribe to New Scientist, which will give me access to their archives. If I remember I'll try to find the article and summarise it for you all.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  43. #42  
    Forum Sophomore Kabooom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    102
    New Scientist seems to have a lot of interesting articles. I have Popular Science which is pretty much a joke. I was thinking of subscirbing to New Scientist...

    (kinda off topic but oh well hah)
    WHAT?!
    Reply With Quote  
     

  44. #43  
    New Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    2
    In Juan Oro's experiment which I believe was similar to miller/Ureys, wasnt there alot of Adenine produced aswell as amino acids?

    And as adenine is one of the four bases in RNA and DNA, does that mean it would be possible to create the other 3 bases needed in RNA and DNA if different chemicals were used in a similar experiment?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  45. #44  
    Guest
    Just to clear up a point made earlier in the thread, I was wrong, you can get a computer with a mind of it's own, all you have to do is load windows operating software.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  46. #45  
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    321
    Like all science, terms need to be defined. what is life?

    Having said that, the division between life and non-life is largely artificial. 'Life' as a concept is subjective. The chemistry and physics of atoms, molecules, etc. and energy forces upon them is identical whether something is life or not life. A carbon atom is a carbon atom. The laws of Relativity or Thermodynamics are the same whether applied to the organic or the inorganic.

    The universe is about matter and energy and these act the same despite any artificially imposed human identification of 'this is life'. Life may be special to humans but has no special meaning in studying mass and energy.. It's all chemistry and the potential relationship of matter and energy. Creating life has proven complicated and may be elusive for a while but it's logical and rational. Just a matter of figuring it out.

    One of the great boons of eventually creating life in a lab will in understanding what may be 'out there' in the universe. How specific are all the necessary variables and under what conditions would these variables come together naturally.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  47. #46 "Creating" life 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    Like all science, terms need to be defined. what is life?

    Having said that, the division between life and non-life is largely artificial. 'Life' as a concept is subjective. The chemistry and physics of atoms, molecules, etc. and energy forces upon them is identical whether something is life or not life. A carbon atom is a carbon atom. The laws of Relativity or Thermodynamics are the same whether applied to the organic or the inorganic.

    The universe is about matter and energy and these act the same despite any artificially imposed human identification of 'this is life'. Life may be special to humans but has no special meaning in studying mass and energy.. It's all chemistry and the potential relationship of matter and energy. Creating life has proven complicated and may be elusive for a while but it's logical and rational. Just a matter of figuring it out.

    One of the great boons of eventually creating life in a lab will in understanding what may be 'out there' in the universe. How specific are all the necessary variables and under what conditions would these variables come together naturally.
    Interestings thoughts. I largely agree with you. Life certainly is a physicochemical affair. But I disagree that the division of life from non-life is arificial and subjective. It's something more than that. I think the distinction can be made in something other than the materials themselves, instead involving digital code. Clearly, living things, even viruses, have the ability to propagate their genetric codes. Rocks and gases, on the other hand, do not. So the distinction is made with coded homology—some genes (hox genes, for example) are so durable in space and time as to defeat temporal erosion for hundreds of millions of years. Once I challenged myself to identify the oldest structures, material of otherwise, on planet Earth. Aside the the elements and a few old rocks, the answer I found is GENES. So, my point is that life engages more than just those physicochemical laws; it speaks a kind of "langauge" that must also be understood in terms of its origin and evolution before we ever stand a chance of "creating life in a lab."

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  48. #47  
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    321
    True but all those codes are based on the identical properties that govern non-organic matter. Because something is complicated doesn't mean it's qualitatatively different from something else. Every action within a gene is subject to chemistry that that is based on the same physical properties of mass and energy that governs everything in the universe. What we call life is simply the outward display of relationships of matter and energy. Our label of 'life' is like a 'reader' of information. A computer has stored bits of information regardless of whether it is being viewed on a screen or not. Positive and negative charges are happening all over the place in the univerese and are not any different because they aren't a rounded up into some format and viewed by a human being.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  49. #48  
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    True but all those codes are based on the identical properties that govern non-organic matter. Because something is complicated doesn't mean it's qualitatatively different from something else. Every action within a gene is subject to chemistry that that is based on the same physical properties of mass and energy that governs everything in the universe. What we call life is simply the outward display of relationships of matter and energy. Our label of 'life' is like a 'reader' of information. A computer has stored bits of information regardless of whether it is being viewed on a screen or not. Positive and negative charges are happening all over the place in the univerese and are not any different because they aren't a rounded up into some format and viewed by a human being.
    The parts I've bolded are the ones I don't think you are clear about. Of course genes are made of chemicals—nucleotides, specifically. There is nothing really extra special about these nucleodes, which are subject to all physicochemical laws, except for the fact that their ARRANGEMENTS on nucleic acids mean EVERYTHING to life and NOTHING to non-life.

    Do you have a physicochemical principle to show me that accounts those digitally coded parts of life?

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  50. #49  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    Jellyologist, the difference between life and non-life, or between consciousness and non-consciousness, arises out of those wonderful beasts called emergent properties.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  51. #50  
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    321
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Jellyologist, the difference between life and non-life, or between consciousness and non-consciousness, arises out of those wonderful beasts called emergent properties.
    Otherwise 'magic'.

    Just because the physics is complicated and we have trouble wrapping our minds around an issue doesn't lead me to fall back on such glossing over gobblygook.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  52. #51 Emergent properties in biology 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Jellyologist, the difference between life and non-life, or between consciousness and non-consciousness, arises out of those wonderful beasts called emergent properties.
    Otherwise 'magic'.

    Just because the physics is complicated and we have trouble wrapping our minds around an issue doesn't lead me to fall back on such glossing over gobblygook.
    Your point evades me. I don't know why emergent properties in biology amount to "gobblygook." The very reason we do not know enough about life to make it artificially in the lab is that we have not yet discovered the principles behind all of life's emergent properties. For example, having nucleotides strung together by way chemical bonds is one thing; having them strung together as coded messages is quite another. Somewhere there are emergent properties we still know nothing about. (Or maybe I am just "glossy over gobblygook" on the emergent property of genes?)

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  53. #52  
    Moderator Moderator John Galt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    13,659
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    Just because the physics is complicated and we have trouble wrapping our minds around an issue doesn't lead me to fall back on such glossing over gobblygook.
    I am disappointed that you consider the field of complexity theory to be gobble-de-gook. This is a well established field of investigation, having deep implications for many, perhaps all, scientific disciplines. It also is pertinent to philosophical and metaphysical reflections.
    If you wish to pursue a reductionist approach, so be it, but I think you will be the loser.

    I see Crabby has made much the same point as me. It is certainly within the field of biology, and in particular the origin of life, of metazoans, and of consciounesss, that emergent properties are central to any functional explanation of these phenomena.

    Edit: "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." Arthur C. Clarke.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  54. #53 Re: Emergent properties in biology 
    Forum Senior
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    321
    Quote Originally Posted by Crabby
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    Quote Originally Posted by Ophiolite
    Jellyologist, the difference between life and non-life, or between consciousness and non-consciousness, arises out of those wonderful beasts called emergent properties.
    Otherwise 'magic'.

    Just because the physics is complicated and we have trouble wrapping our minds around an issue doesn't lead me to fall back on such glossing over gobblygook.
    Your point evades me. I don't know why emergent properties in biology amount to "gobblygook." The very reason we do not know enough about life to make it artificially in the lab is that we have not yet discovered the principles behind all of life's emergent properties. For example, having nucleotides strung together by way chemical bonds is one thing; having them strung together as coded messages is quite another. Somewhere there are emergent properties we still know nothing about. (Or maybe I am just "glossy over gobblygook" on the emergent property of genes?)

    —Crabby
    You can speak of emergent property of genes all you want. That does nothing to separate organic and inorganic properties of energy and mass. What we call 'organic' is not separate from inorganic but a manifestation of chemical processes.

    "For example, having nucleotides strung together by way chemical bonds is one thing; having them strung together as coded messages is quite another"

    Meaning what? Of course things are different from each other. A dog is different from a cat. What is the 'magic' process that makes the atoms and forces of energy any different in your example? Nothing. Or do you imbue some spiritual 'spark' to some matter and energy. God getting in the back door?
    Reply With Quote  
     

  55. #54 Re: Emergent properties in biology 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by Jellyologist
    "For example, having nucleotides strung together by way chemical bonds is one thing; having them strung together as coded messages is quite another"

    Meaning what? Of course things are different from each other. A dog is different from a cat. What is the 'magic' process that makes the atoms and forces of energy any different in your example? Nothing. Or do you imbue some spiritual 'spark' to some matter and energy. God getting in the back door?
    No, we don't need to go there. All I'm saying is that this emergent property of genes sets us apart from non-living things, and that we do not yet know the principles that explain how such an emergent property comes about in nature. As soon as we learn how a genetically coded system evolves out of a morass of molecules we will then know a lot more about how to make life "from scratch."

    Richard Dawkins, in his River Out Of Edan, refers to genes as "pure, digital infiormation." I wonder what you think of that.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  56. #55 Re: Have we ever created life? 
    墨子 DaBOB's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    1,674
    Quote Originally Posted by Scifor Refugee
    Quote Originally Posted by DaBOB
    No we have not. Not even in the "from something living" way. Having a baby isn't making life it is continuing it. When a cell divides is it making life? No, it is dividing. That is all that ever happens. Whether life was "created" or magically "evolved" it has never been capable of creating more life (to our knowledge). Creating life is so complex that, like Ophiolite about the puzzle thingy, who knows how much we know or how much more we need to know. Like one of my teachers said, 'the more you know, the more you realize you don't know'.
    Again, I feel I should point out that we have created complete viruses from scratch non-living chemicals. Whether or not viruses are alive is debatable (indeed, biologists debate it all the time), but we are much closer than you seem to think. We can create things that reproduce, respond to their environment, and evolve - so even if we can't technically create life yet, we are certainly straddling the borderline at which our creations could be considered alive.
    We have created things that simulate what life is but they are not life. Creating a molecule or even a cell is not creating life. I think we must know what life is before we can create it. Life is somthing deeper. Personally I think it has something to do with cell to cell comunication but obviously I have no clue. Technically if you look at our compostion it is nothing more than non-living chemicals. What makes a chemical alive? This is why I say we don't know. Life is more than just DNA.

    It's like when Deepak Chopra said in one of his tapes. That saliva can digest non-living protein. I would like to see him explain what makes a protein alive and how an enzyme could tell the difference. He is considered by many to be a "quack".
    Do not try and bend the spoon. That's impossible. Instead... only realize the truth. There is no spoon. Then you'll see that it is not the spoon that bends, it is only yourself. -Spoon Boy
    Reply With Quote  
     

  57. #56  
    Forum Sophomore DarcgreY's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    135
    Quote Originally Posted by Powerdoc
    One day, we will be able to create live.
    It's just a matter of time

    The question is :
    what kind of life will we create first ? :
    - biological life (unicellular pattern)
    - silicon life.

    I wonder how we will be able to know, when a computer reach the point of being a living object.
    A computer will be a living thing, when it will start to think it's own way, and just not be a machine.
    But does a perfect logic device, can be life ? If someone is totally devoted to logic, then he has not free will : because logic will dictate each of it's action. All he will do, will be totally predictable, and could be done exactly the same way, with a computer clone.
    Quantum computing offers possiblities that are difficult to imagine, it introduces randomness that takes computing beyond linear logic.

    I think current current computers are at the level of the early macro-molecules that eventually went on to be the basis for carbon based life. We're working to create silicon based strutures that can replicate and adapt to the environment. Given evolution(which should also apply to silicon organisms) and enough time there's no way to predict how advanced our current computers could become.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  58. #57 Silicon life? 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by DarcgreY
    ...I think current current computers are at the level of the early macro-molecules that eventually went on to be the basis for carbon based life. We're working to create silicon based strutures that can replicate and adapt to the environment. Given evolution(which should also apply to silicon organisms) and enough time there's no way to predict how advanced our current computers could become.
    I wonder about those "silicon organisms." Why does future life have to come in the form of physical organisms? Perhaps the evolutionary trajectory will be away from material organisms and toward virtual ones. My contention is that life must necessarily be in search of immortality, or at least in search of life-extension. Indeed our genes seem bent on immortality; some of them are hundreds of millions of years old. But I don't know what Si organisms will do for the evolution of life, other than make it just a little more durable. To me, the real fun will come when biological organisms, let's say humans, are seen as meer larvae for their virtual butterflies. Then, speculatively, we will live virtually for a billion years or more, maybe inside quantum computers. Only then will we enjoy space travel without having to resort to some kind of metabolic stupor. So maybe we could "live" happily forever on a silicon chip, or in a quantum water drop, and despense with all of those biological limitations we suffer from now.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

  59. #58  
    Forum Sophomore DarcgreY's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    135
    I think whatever comes after us will bear little resemblance of us. There's no question that we are starting to interface with the technology we are creating and will be an important part of what evolves. There's an aspect of immortality in that I guess, but I don't think it will be on the individual level. Nature seem to put limits on that, at least for advanced lifeforms.

    I agree with you about the possibilities of breaking free of organic limitations. Instead of building complex habitats to allow humans to travel in space the individual would be the craft itself. Able to feed off of light or rare earths and other raw materials directly.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  60. #59  
    Forum Freshman
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    46
    Nice to see Emergence and Complexity Theory mentioned. That really is the best approach in my opinion. And to that I'd add Non-Linear Dynamics and Catastrophe Theory. All of these do a wonderful job of satisfying my curiosity about the origin of life: various living phenomena emerge as critical points (catastrophe points) are reached in the (non-linear) dynamics of the prebiotic earth. I don't think it would have happened if all the chemistry obeyed linear laws and therefore I hold dynamics as the central phenomenon of life. Getting a hold on this concept to me is the critical issue in synthesizing artificial life.
    Reply With Quote  
     

  61. #60 Self replicating artificial life 
    Forum Professor leohopkins's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Dulwich, London, England
    Posts
    1,417
    Self replicating atrificial life. We could go in-organic with this one....
    Take a load of micro-magnets and string them all together in a certain fashion. Thats your DNA. Now take messenger RNA (another glob of magnets that will align themselves to the DNA) it breaks away with the mirror image of the DNA, exits the cell nucleus and now proteins/amino acid chains (other magnets) copy themselves off the RNA then are forcably folded to perform a specific function.

    Can anyone tell me; Does plant-life make protein from amino acids ?
    If not, what is the DNA & RNA used for ?
    The hand of time rested on the half-hour mark, and all along that old front line of the English there came a whistling and a crying. The men of the first wave climbed up the parapets, in tumult, darkness, and the presence of death, and having done with all pleasant things, advanced across No Man's Land to begin the Battle of the Somme. - Poet John Masefield.

    www.leohopkins.com
    Reply With Quote  
     

  62. #61 Re: Self replicating artificial life 
    Forum Freshman Crabby's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Puget Sound
    Posts
    23
    Quote Originally Posted by leohopkins
    Can anyone tell me; Does plant-life make protein from amino acids ? If not, what is the DNA & RNA used for ?
    Leo,

    Plants and all other life forms make proteins from amino acids, and in quit the same way (and with the same amino acids) used by humans and their dogs and their fleas to perform protein synthesis. Additionally, plants and all other life forms, including virusues, use the same kinds of nucleic acids (DNA/RNA) to hold their genetic codes. Given that, it might be fair to say there really is only one kind of life form on this planet.

    —Crabby
    Reply With Quote  
     

Bookmarks
Bookmarks
Posting Permissions
  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •