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RobC Posted 11 months ago
What is natural selection?

Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace are jointly credited with the theory of evolution by natural selection.

Their revolutionary idea helps us to understand the diversity and complexity of life on Earth

https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/what-is-natural-selection.html

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22 replies
    • Deleted User 10th June 2021 at 10:47 pm

      I reckon it doesn’t help at all and the theories of Charles Darwin are rapidly losing favour.
      20th and 21st Century scientific discoveries are making the theories look a little ridiculous now.

      Reply
      • MikeOC 11th June 2021 at 1:47 am

        Losing favour with who?

        Certainly not the scientific community.. That’s for sure.
        The evidence to support ‘natural selection’ is overwhelming!

        Reply
        • Deleted User 11th June 2021 at 3:47 am

          With the scientific community.
          What is this evidence because along with modern science there is a distinct lack of any evidence at all.

          Reply
        • MikeOC 12th June 2021 at 11:31 pm

          Key points:
          Evidence for evolution comes from many different areas of biology:
          Anatomy. Species may share similar physical features because the feature was present in a common ancestor (homologous structures).
          Molecular biology. DNA and the genetic code reflect the shared ancestry of life. DNA comparisons can show how related species are.
          Biogeography. The global distribution of organisms and the unique features of island species reflect evolution and geological change.
          Fossils. Fossils document the existence of now-extinct past species that are related to present-day species.
          Direct observation. We can directly observe small-scale evolution in organisms with short lifecycles (e.g., pesticide-resistant insects).
          Introduction
          Evolution is a key unifying principle in biology. As Theodosius Dobzhansky once said, “Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution.”^1
          1
          start superscript, 1, end superscript
          But what, exactly, are the features of biology that make more sense through the lens of evolution? To put it another way, what are the indications or traces that show evolution has taken place in the past and is still happening today?
          Evolution happens on large and small scales
          Before we look at the evidence, let’s make sure we are on the same page about what evolution is. Broadly speaking, evolution is a change in the genetic makeup (and often, the heritable features) of a population over time. Biologists sometimes define two types of evolution based on scale:
          Macroevolution, which refers to large-scale changes that occur over extended time periods, such as the formation of new species and groups.
          Microevolution, which refers to small-scale changes that affect just one or a few genes and happen in populations over shorter timescales.
          Microevolution and macroevolution aren’t really two different processes. They’re the same process – evolution – occurring on different timescales. Microevolutionary processes occurring over thousands or millions of years can add up to large-scale changes that define new species or groups.
          The evidence for evolution
          In this article, we’ll examine the evidence for evolution on both macro and micro scales.
          First, we’ll look at several types of evidence (including physical and molecular features, geographical information, and fossils) that provide evidence for, and can allow us to reconstruct, macroevolutionary events.
          At the end of the article, we’ll finish by seeing how microevolution can be directly observed, as in the emergence of pesticide-resistant insects.
          Anatomy and embryology
          Darwin thought of evolution as “descent with modification,” a process in which species change and give rise to new species over many generations. He proposed that the evolutionary history of life forms a branching tree with many levels, in which all species can be traced back to an ancient common ancestor.

          Reply
    • Olga 10th June 2021 at 11:13 pm

      The Darwin theory I think. The strongest wins. Unfortunately old theories die slowly, like men who still think in past history like Apes, men were were the hunters, women the gathers. Women have taken his role on for centuries and sometimes are their own worst enemies, we as women have let this happen. We as men and women need each other, lets understand where we fit in life and find the right balance to be equal and use each others strengths and weaknesses.

      Reply
      • Richard L 11th July 2021 at 6:28 pm

        ‘The strongest wins’ is somethings referred to Darwinism. But it not Darwin proposed, or what the (respectable) scientific community mean by Darwinism. It is unfortunate that some people use the term as an excuse for their forms of prejudice.

        Reply
      • Roger Jago 27th July 2021 at 8:39 pm

        I don’t think ‘the strongest wins’ is true; natural selection states ‘survival of the fittest’ meaning those that best fit their environment will survive and produce those with similar characteristics’ the different birds beaks on different islands wa his clue.

        Reply
    • Deleted User 11th June 2021 at 1:07 am

      Francis Crick famous for figuring out the double helix of DNA.

      He knew the DNA was a machine but couldn’t figure out how it functioned.

      His weekend entertainment was taking LSD and on one trip he couldn’t stop thinking about his work and there in front of him on the coffee table appeared in full 3D multicolour the functioning DNA double helix.

      It was his eureka moment.

      He realised that this computer programme couldn’t possibly arise by chance from mud and lightning and couldn’t bring himself to believe in a creator God so the only explanation he could come up with is a super advanced civilisation somewhere in the universe had created this and sent it off into space or directly to earth for the continuation of life in the universe.

      Did you know that every human has enough DNA in him to circle the solar system which is around ten billion miles and all functioning 24 hrs a day as a seriously advanced digital machine that according to Bill Gates man will probably never be able to come near creating or replicating.

      Reply
    • Renoir64 12th June 2021 at 8:00 am

      Ah, are you a creationist? No evidence whatsoever for that. And when I say evidence I mean that properly studied, peer reviewed stuff, not fitting facts to deeply held religious beliefs. Having religious faith is, of course, totally fine. Using it to try and disprove science is always problematic.

      Reply
      • Deleted User 12th June 2021 at 9:39 am

        The following is not science.

        It’s faith based.

        Before I go any further up till the 1920’s and scientists believed because their science told them so that the universe had always existed.

        The religious lot said no it had a beginning.

        The scientists didn’t like having to climb down from their lofty perches and say damn your right it did have a beginning.

        Here’s what you think is science simplified yes but this is your faith…

        There’s nothing no space no time no anything.

        But we’re going to have to say there was something so we’ll call it a singularity.

        That’s a label not a scientific explanation.

        There wasn’t anywhere for this thing to be because there was no space and there was no time for it to rapidly expand (big bang) because there was no time.

        This event isn’t something that happened a long long time ago it’s something that is still happening now something we are actually in and a part of. (Ths theory too is now unravelling).

        To simplify things I’ll refer to it as an explosion.

        Here we are in this huge explosion hurtling outward.

        Zillions of atoms formed and becoming mixed up joined up and forming other things like gold and granite copper water etc.

        All accidently of course no direction no intelligence involved yet some of these atoms accidently join up in such a way as to build a big telescope and look back and say wow… were part of a big bang! The universe has become conscious and starts observing and measuring itself wanting to explore itself.

        That is so unscientific as to be nothing more than an article of faith.

        The things that built the telescopes obviously had eyes which also came about by accident no design or designer needed in this act of creation.

        What on earth would prompt atoms to arrange themselves as to see?

        No skeletal remains of one eyed apes with an eye on the side of the head or the top or in the hand maybe on a kneecap why? Full blown stereoscopic vision. Neat.

        We don’t actually see with the eyes but with a highly complex piece of machinery we call the visual cortex situated at the back of the head. This piece of equipment never ever sees light is never exposed to a tiny bit of it..

        The eyes have light fall on them and this is converted to electrical signals that then show… on a screen at the back of our heads?… (who is sitting there watching it? Are they comfy? am I actually inside my head watching these thing? All unanswered scientific questions) whatever it is we’re looking at and the wiring of all this visual machinery is also wired to memory to emotion to stereoscopic sound to smell and taste and touch in full technicolour.

        Did the visual cortex start evolving and wiring itself up in this ever complex way that we have little understanding of before or after the eyes evolved?

        How and why would it?

        Why would a piece of equipment be built in total darkness that will never ever see light and in such a complex way that our science can’t explain much about it at all after many many years of trying?

        The main reason being it can’t happen by undirected chance our science tells us it can’t.

        The human brain is the most mysterious and complex piece of kit yet discovered in the universe.

        No one has a clue how consciousness came about or are even sure where it is situated.

        You want to believe it all came about by accident made from mud and lightening. Your faith must be very strong because so far there’s no science backing much of any of this up.

        Interesting scientific look at things here >>>>

        Reply
    • Renoir64 12th June 2021 at 10:31 am

      So like I said. No actual evidence. The tree of Life as produced by Darwin is broadly borne out by DNA sequences of all living matter.
      Humans share common DNA with fruit flies etc
      In terms of fossil records and your one eyed ape hypothesis, survival of the fittest, which is at the heart of evolution, means that only successful mutations survive.
      There are no one eyed creatures of any kind because that mutation wouldn’t have been successful.

      In terms of faith in science as apposed to millennium old books, well yes I do but it isn’t a blind unquestioning faith. That’s sort of the point of science and the progress that it generates.

      Man used to think that the sun went around the earth. It’s doesn’t and we can demonstrate this.

      In some ancient cultures it was thought that each day there was a new sun. We know that this isn’t true.

      The faith I have in science means that I didn’t have to worry about smallpox because it was irradiated by, well, science.

      You and I can communicate via the internet made possible by science and not some invisible super being.

      The thing about scientific facts is that wether you believe in them or not they’re still facts.

      Or planet is an insignificant speck of dust in an ordinary galaxy which in turn is one of billions of galaxy.

      Over periods of time that are barely comprehensible, minute changes over countless generations have led to what life on earth is. We can actually demonstrate evolution.

      I wish I could take the comfort that they’re is some plan by an invisible friend behind all this but there isn’t.

      Reply
    • Deleted User 12th June 2021 at 10:56 am

      Todays science has shown the tree of life to be nonsense and no evolution cannot be demonstrated. Of course you can make lots of nice drawings explaining what you want it to be but sadly it doesn’t exist in the fossil world.
      Not sure why you’re explaining the things science has achieved to be honest because I think they’re mostly obvious we have achieved some great things.
      If you watch the short video you will see that science is headed to the spiritual side more and more. Spiritually based realities are giving us a new paradigm.
      One of the things I find odd is people who think the big bang and all it’s billions of accidental happenings believe that the big bang also created somewhere to go after we die.
      If you’ve been nice and held doors open for others given up your seat on the bus for someone more in need there’s a place accidently created that’s better than this place for the door holders to go to but if you rode your motorbike up and down the street cursing loudly and drinking t0o much beer there’s another accidental place your going to when your dead that’s more uncomfortable than where we’re at just now.
      An accidental nice place an accidental worse place and the living somewhere in the middle!
      All these accidental happenings!

      Reply
      • Renoir64 13th June 2021 at 1:17 pm

        Science is heading to the spiritual. Can you provide me with some proper peer reviewed evidence for that rather than a video from Simone who just further validates your beliefs.
        To be clear what I’m after is ACTUAL evidence to support your beliefs (for that is what they are alone)
        Any proper evidence to support either the supreme being or intelligent design view of the universe.
        So I need links to academic papers and the like not links to youtube videos of people who try and crowbar science into their belief structure.
        I remind you, I don’t need to believe in science, because facts are facts whether I believe in them or not.
        Just because facts challenge my views doesn’t mean that they’re wrong, they still remain facts.

        Reply
    • MikeOC 13th June 2021 at 9:24 pm

      I fear you are wasting your time.. He believes in ‘fairies’… not scientific facts regrettably..

      Reply
      • Deleted User 14th June 2021 at 7:38 pm

        Sadly your scientific facts keep changing as I’ve already shown.

        Reply
        • MikeOC 15th June 2021 at 1:06 am

          A ‘fact’ is just that.. Its irrefutable.. Facts do not change because they are fact. You haven’t shown anything to support your argument. What evidence are you presenting? Science is supported by empirical evidence.. Proven facts!

          Reply
        • Deleted User 15th June 2021 at 1:35 am

          So the scientific fact that the universe had always been here can never be undone by new facts?

          Reply
        • MikeOC 15th June 2021 at 11:59 am

          Science hasn’t proven that the Universe has always been here. It is still unknown whether it has or hasn’t been. It is not yet a ‘fact’
          Because man does not have an understanding of the Universe, some men came up with the notion of a ‘God as the creator’
          A supernatural all powerful entity that created ‘everything’
          God is man made.. It came out of a desire to provide an answer to that which he did not understand. Nothing has changed. Fact : the Universe exists Fact : God does not exist.

          Reply
        • Roger Jago 27th July 2021 at 8:46 pm

          However, having just had a death in my overseas family, I will not ‘kill off’ the local beliefs in a god. I accept the death as being normal, but the locals want to believe that the dead will meet up with previous family members. It gives them some comfort, so I do not ridicule them.

          Reply
    • Kim V 9th July 2021 at 10:55 am

      A great read, something for everyone!

      Reply
    • loislane 9th July 2021 at 12:47 pm

      Yes fascinating, I’m off to read my book of Origins by Charles Darwin, who at least investigated, recorded evidence, drew lovely pictures of what he found.

      Reply
    • Roger Jago 27th July 2021 at 8:52 pm

      My logic dismissing ‘future life’ is that so many millions have died to date, and does this include ‘early man’ of which numerous sculls have been found, going back to what were obviously apelike animals. As an animal species, why should we believe that all our previous sub-humans were not included in this ‘afterlife’ and similarly why not all other species of animal? Of course, if one believes that we were made ‘in his image’ then this conflicts with the evidence of human evolution.

      Reply
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