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How we found out evolution is true: John van Wyhe at TEDxNTU

Frank Robert

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(17 minute video)

John van Wyhe is a historian of science at the National University of Singapore. He is the Director of Darwin Online and Wallace Online, the author of eight books and lectures and broadcasts around the world.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
 
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Guy Threepwood

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(17 minute video)

John van Wyhe is a historian of science at the National University of Singapore. He is the Director of Darwin Online and Wallace Online, the author of eight books and lectures and broadcasts around the world.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)

in the first 50 seconds:

'the theory was accepted by the scientific community..[] how could this happen in a world that was so against evolution?'

The scientific community also accepted steady state when the vast majority of the world never did. That said a lot more about the ideology in academia than weight of scientific evidence.

Similarly most of the world still does not accept ToE, belief is around 22% in the US in the most recent Gallup poll.
 
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Frank Robert

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in the first 50 seconds:

'the theory was accepted by the scientific community..[] how could this happen in a world that was so against evolution?'
You are confusing the scientific community with religious and political communities.

The scientific community also accepted steady state when the vast majority of the world never did. That said a lot more about the ideology in academia than weight of scientific evidence.
You don't understand that the self-correcting nature of scientific method and theory is a feature not a bug.
Similarly most of the world still does not accept ToE, belief is around 22% in the US in the most recent Gallup poll.
I haven't looked at worldwide polling but in the US the vast majority of dissent to the ToE is from evangelical Christians and conservative republicans. Jerry Coyne at Evolution is True did a path analysis of the polling and found that Christian dissent to the ToE carried more than twice weight as other factors.
 
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Guy Threepwood

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You are confusing the scientific community with religious and political communities.

Actually I'm pointing out that they are entirely different, the scientific community is a very small and insulated group who's opinions can vary widely from the wisdom of the masses and scientific truth.

You don't understand that the self-correcting nature of scientific method and theory is a feature not a bug.

I agree entirely; the scientific method does not call for ending debate on a theory, it calls for being open to correction based on new evidence

But about only 16 secs in "[] the book didn't have that much evidence, but within 10-15 years the scientific debate was over'

i.e. clearly the method and the community are often at odds with each other


I haven't looked at worldwide polling but in the US the vast majority of dissent to the ToE is from evangelical Christians and conservative republicans. Jerry Coyne at Evolution is True did a path analysis of the polling and found that Christian dissent to the ToE carried more than twice weight as other factors.

So ToE is more popular among atheists? I'd never have guessed!
 
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(17 minute video)

John van Wyhe is a historian of science at the National University of Singapore. He is the Director of Darwin Online and Wallace Online, the author of eight books and lectures and broadcasts around the world.

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
Does unconformity show that the earth is unimaginably old… or that there was (at some time) an unimaginable and colossal amount of upheaval as described in Genesis??? It appears Darwin may very well have put more thought into whether or not he should marry than he did the likelihood of creation.
 
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essentialsaltes

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Similarly most of the world still does not accept ToE, belief is around 22% in the US in the most recent Gallup poll.

The question was specific to human evolution. Even so, if you add "Humans evolved, with God guiding." the total that accept that humans evolved is 55%.

'God created humans in their present form' is, and always has been, a minority view in the Gallup poll.
 
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driewerf

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Actually I'm pointing out that they are entirely different, the scientific community is a very small and insulated group who's opinions can vary widely from the wisdom of the masses and scientific truth.
All right. So the scientific community – the comunity of scientists – has just “opinions” about science, while the masses poses wisdom and scientific truth.
Let us see how that works in practice. First, scientific truth are not innate, or divinely revealed. They are the product of scientific research and then published by scientists. So the “Scientific truths” publishing scientists do not know what they have published – unlike the masses – and hence have just opinions.
One can wonder how these masses acquire these scientific truths – unknown and/ or not understood by scientists. When did the masses go to chemistry labs for performing chemistry experiments? When did the masses dissect rabbits and sea slugs and peaked through microscopes for understanding the structure of different tissues? When did the masses stain chromosomes for elucidating the meiotic cell division? Luckily we have the masses for giving us all that knowledge, because obviously we can’t count on the scientific community.
I agree entirely; the scientific method does not call for ending debate on a theory, it calls for being open to correction based on new evidence

But about only 16 secs in "[] the book didn't have that much evidence, but within 10-15 years the scientific debate was over'

i.e. clearly the method and the community are often at odds with each other
Again, scientists not knowing how science works.
Imagine that. It will come as a shock that on some subjects the evidence can be so compelling that indeed the debate is over.
• No scientist doubts the sphericity of the Earth or the heliocentric model
• No scientist doubts the existence of atoms
• No scientist doubts that DNA is the carrier of genetic information (I still have an old botany book where the proteins on the chromosomes are seen as carriers of the genetic information).
• No scientist doubts the action of plate tectonics.

These debates are over. And some were very intense.
Who ever wants to cast a doubt on any of these will need very, very compelling arguments.

So ToE is more popular among atheists? I'd never have guessed!
The part you replied to did not say “theists or deists”. It said “fundamentalist Christians and conservative republicans”. And news flash: there are religious people that aren’t fundamentalist Christians. All 1.3 billion Roman Catholics, for starters. Not to speak of the many more liberal Christian denominations, 1 billion hindus, the jews, the 1 billion muslims and so on. All non atheists and non fundamentalist Christians. Go figure.
 
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Frank Robert

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Actually I'm pointing out that they are entirely different, the scientific community is a very small and insulated group who's opinions can vary widely from the wisdom of the masses and scientific truth.
You fail to point out that 97% of legitimate scientists, i.e. scientists with both educational and practical scientific experience affirm that the ToE is both theory and fact.
clearly the method and the community are often at odds with each other
Non-scientist community members have not been for scientific endeavors such as teaching science and scientific research.
I agree entirely; the scientific method does not call for ending debate on a theory, it calls for being open to correction based on new evidence.

But about only 16 secs in "[] the book didn't have that much evidence, but within 10-15 years the scientific debate was over'
How much evidence can be packed into 16secs.

Debate over Darwin's work led to the rapid acceptance of the general concept of evolution, but the specific mechanism he proposed, natural selection, was not widely accepted until it was revived by developments in biology that occurred during the 1920s through the 1940s.

I would say that the late 1700's to the 1920's is just about the right amount of time for the consilience of evidence for the ToE to be accepted among scientists.
 
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Frank Robert

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Does unconformity show that the earth is unimaginably old… or that there was (at some time) an unimaginable and colossal amount of upheaval as described in Genesis??? It appears Darwin may very well have put more thought into whether or not he should marry than he did the likelihood of creation.
Darwin was a 19th century biologist if you want to know about how science arrives at the age of the earth, a modern physicist like Sean Carroll would be a better person to quiz. If you want a theological assessment, take your pick from the many religions in the world.
 
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Guy Threepwood

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You fail to point out that 97% of legitimate scientists, i.e. scientists with both educational and practical scientific experience affirm that the ToE is both theory and fact.

I believe it was about that many who affirmed that phlebotomy was a safe and effective treatment for a vast range of ailments for over a hundred years.

There were far more skeptics among the 'non-scientist community' Including George Washington who was killed by it.

But it depends how you define ToE, most scientists concede that certain crucial stages cannot be best accounted for by Darwinian processes, e.g. the first Eukaryotes.

i.e. it's no longer a question of whether Darwinism fails to account for the diversity of the biosphere, rather how short it falls. Many believe it has very limited power to affect mostly destructive changes of the kind we can actually observe: Birds losing flight, fish losing sight etc.


Non-scientist community members have not been for scientific endeavors such as teaching science and scientific research.

Well actually a large non-scientist community was conducting direct practical research on this for hundreds of years before Darwin, testing hypothesis, direct observation, careful measurement. Only they were not called 'scientists' they were called 'farmers'. They were already quite familiar with the limitations of incremental change through selection pressures, long before 'punctuated equilibrium'

How much evidence can be packed into 16secs.

Debate over Darwin's work led to the rapid acceptance of the general concept of evolution, but the specific mechanism he proposed, natural selection, was not widely accepted until it was revived by developments in biology that occurred during the 1920s through the 1940s.

well yes, Piltdown man certainly held a lot of sway during that particular timeframe-
I did watch the entire vid actually a couple of weeks ago, strange he didn't mention it.. must have slipped his mind.

I would say that the late 1700's to the 1920's is just about the right amount of time for the consilience of evidence for the ToE to be accepted among scientists.

Much like classical physics then. 'Science progresses one funeral at time': Max Planck, discoverer of quantum mechanics
 
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Frank Robert

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I believe it was about that many who affirmed that phlebotomy was a safe and effective treatment for a vast range of ailments for over a hundred years.
You get one point for phlebotomy. Why not more than one point. Phlebotom was not based on a consilience of multiple unrelated scientific fields.
But it depends how you define ToE, most scientists concede that certain crucial stages cannot be best accounted for by Darwinian processes, e.g. the first Eukaryotes.
The endosymbiotic theory explains how eukaryotic cells evolved

i.e. it's no longer a question of whether Darwinism fails to account for the diversity of the biosphere, rather how short it falls. Many believe it has very limited power to affect mostly destructive changes of the kind we can actually observe: Birds losing flight, fish losing sight etc.
Isn't it strange that those who are dismissing evolution as impossible never provide any scientific evidence to support their beliefs.
Well actually a large non-scientist community was conducting direct practical research on this for hundreds of years before Darwin, testing hypothesis, direct observation, careful measurement. Only they were not called 'scientists' they were called 'farmers'. They were already quite familiar with the limitations of incremental change through selection pressures, long before 'punctuated equilibrium'
The scientific method is open to scientists and non-scientists alike. Discovery Institute, AIG and others raise millions of dollars supporting anti-Darwin activities. Can you point us to any science research they have published?
Piltdown man certainly held a lot of sway during that particular timeframe-
Thanks for the example of how science is self-correcting. Study reveals culprit behind Piltdown Man, one of science's most famous hoaxes
Much like classical physics then. 'Science progresses one funeral at time': Max Planck, discoverer of quantum mechanics
Perhaps you can come up with something better.

Just as an aside: ALL professions, even religious ones, have their share of bad actors.
 
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Guy Threepwood

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You get one point for phlebotomy. Why not more than one point. Phlebotom was not based on a consilience of multiple unrelated scientific fields.

I'll take it :)

The endosymbiotic theory explains how eukaryotic cells evolved

^ not Darwinian theory then

Isn't it strange that those who are dismissing evolution as impossible never provide any scientific evidence to support their beliefs.

?Penguins are an example of something evolving towards the ability to fly?

The scientific method is open to scientists and non-scientists alike. Discovery Institute, AIG and others raise millions of dollars supporting anti-Darwin activities. Can you point us to any science research they have published?

I'm sure they publish their own, likewise how many non-physicians got their critiques of Phlebotomy published in 'The Lancet'. Arguably the most revered medical Journal in the World.. still named for the instrument primarily used to drain pints of blood from anyone with so much as a sore throat.


sure only 40 years of appearing in museum exhibits around the world, used as key evidence in legal trials to have it taught as fact in schools


Just as an aside: ALL professions, even religious ones, have their share of bad actors.

Planck overturned centuries of consensus on classical physics- which was based on a consilience of multiple unrelated scientific fields...

cmon I get more points for that, right? :)
 
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Frank Robert

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I'll take it :)

The endosymbiotic theory explains how eukaryotic cells evolved

^ not Darwinian theory then



?Penguins are an example of something evolving towards the ability to fly?



I'm sure they publish their own, likewise how many non-physicians got their critiques of Phlebotomy published in 'The Lancet'. Arguably the most revered medical Journal in the World.. still named for the instrument primarily used to drain pints of blood from anyone with so much as a sore throat.



sure only 40 years of appearing in museum exhibits around the world, used as key evidence in legal trials to have it taught as fact in schools




Planck overturned centuries of consensus on classical physics- which was based on a consilience of multiple unrelated scientific fields...

cmon I get more points for that, right? :)
Occasionally creationists gets something correct but will never catch up with a broken clock that is right twice a day.

The vast majority of creationist claims are based the occasional blunders of legitimate and attempts to fit evolution theory into a negative hole.
 
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Mountainmike

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Darwin was a 17th century biologist if you want to know about how science arrives at the age of the earth, a modern physicist like Sean Carroll would be a better person to quiz. If you want a theological assessment, take your pick from the many religions in the world.
Darwin must have been 200 years old when he wrote origins then!

Do you agree with Darwin that life is ( his words) miraculous? Written long after origins.

I really do urge you to study philosophy of science, read such as “science before science “rizzi. Discover the limits of what science can tell you: It’s not what you think it is.

Thats why Sean Carroll you mention is worth reading. Have you?
His most embarrassing graph in physics confirms that nobody understands the relationship between observation of reality ( and so the models of science) and the underlying reality. I doubt it will be answered in the 21st century either.

Kant highlighted the essence of the problem long before.

The Most Embarrassing Graph in Modern Physics – Sean Carroll

if you doubt there is a problem here. Read such as “ through two doors at once” anabthaswamy or “ quantum reality “ bagot.

Answer Einstein’s question - does the moon exist before you look At it?
 
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Guy Threepwood

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Occasionally creationists gets something correct but will never catch up with a broken clock that is right twice a day.

The vast majority of creationist claims are based the occasional blunders of legitimate and attempts to fit evolution theory into a negative hole.

I can't really speak for creationists, but I think like most skeptics of Darwinism, I accept the parts of the theory that are demonstrable, testable, empirical, observable. But become skeptical the more speculative and far reaching the theory gets.

We all accept that apples still fall from trees post classical physics.
And likewise, genetic apples will always fall not far from theirs,

But I'd say the common error here would be to extrapolate an observable feature of reality into a comprehensive explanation for it.. tempting as may be. But things do work differently at different scales, they have to.
 
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Guy Threepwood

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The question was specific to human evolution. Even so, if you add "Humans evolved, with God guiding." the total that accept that humans evolved is 55%.

'God created humans in their present form' is, and always has been, a minority view in the Gallup poll.

Sure, but the whole point of Darwin's ToE was that it didn't need God Guiding, and it also didn't make exceptions for humanity but explicitly made an evolutionary link with apes.

On the Origin of Species - Wikipedia
Darwin considered human evolution as part of the natural processes he was investigating,[183] and rejected divine intervention
 
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Frank Robert

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Do you agree with Darwin that life is ( his words) miraculous? Written long after origins.

Miraculous? I don't know. I do know I have lived in the most magical period that world has ever known but that is now coming to an end. Personally I don't have much to complaint about, but I feel badly for those who have not been so lucky. I do try to be selfless and contribute what I able to do.

I really do urge you to study philosophy of science, read such as “science before science “rizzi. Discover the limits of what science can tell you: It’s not what you think it is.
We live in a limited world.

Thats why Sean Carroll you mention is worth reading. Have you?
His most embarrassing graph in physics confirms that nobody understands the relationship between observation of reality ( and so the models of science) and the underlying reality. I doubt it will be answered in the 21st century either.

Kant highlighted the essence of the problem long before.

The Most Embarrassing Graph in Modern Physics – Sean Carroll
if you doubt there is a problem here. Read such as “ through two doors at once” anabthaswamy or “ quantum reality “ bagot.
I am sure he can handle the embarrassment.

Answer Einstein’s question - does the moon exist before you look At it?
I get my paradox fix from Rumi and the TAO.
 
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essentialsaltes

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Sure, but the whole point of Darwin's ToE was that it didn't need God Guiding

No, that is not the whole point of Darwin's ToE.

The whole point was to explain the observed phenomena, just as others like Lamarck and Wallace were attempting to do. None of them were motivated by eliminating the gods.

It used to be thought that angels pushed the planets around. The whole point of the theory of gravity was not to kill them.
 
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