About the "collapsing of wave functions" and "quantum tweaking" notions
of extra-natural guidance in biological evolution...
How is this any different from moving a rock from point-A to point-B
or dropping that rock on a couple slugs as part of an effort at cosmic
animal husbandry? If one can tweak wave functions such that one nucleotide
base can be substituted, why couldn't one tweak a few more and have
all the air surrounding a slug jump one centimeter away until it expires?
That's got to beat Maxwell's demon anytime. Star Trek-style transporters
would be a snap.
Counselor Troi: "Captain! A giant space slug is about to engulf the ensign!"
Captain Picard: "LaForge, get a transporter lock on that and set coordinates
to beam it into a wall!"
LaForge: "Oh no! The quantum molecular overthruster unbalanced the
pattern buffers and tunnelled a new set of chromosomes into the
slug in an energy-less information transfer event. It's evolving
into a telemarketer!
Expendable crew member: "Iyeeee!"
The mechanism is irrelevant, possibly even in the case of natural,
extra-terrestrial designers because we'd probably never know the details.
The question isn't about which back door a "designer" would use to futz
with a system, but whether a particular system can make the transformation
from state-X to state-Y without help from outside the immediate system.
If the system can't make the transition to where you want it to go without
your tweaking, then I wouldn't say that it had "all requisite formational
capabilities" or that such action wouldn't be "violating or overpowering
the natural capabilities of any creaturely system." If you change
probabilities to determine which slugs will live and serve your ultimate
goals by evolving into the perfect, live-animal prop for a particular
Star Trek episode (perhaps evolving photogenic beauty was at one time
outside the formational capabilities of "pre-intervention" slugs),
you're messing with natural capabilities big time.
So what we're talking about here sounds like a classic variant of
progressive creationism. Let's just call it that.
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Oct 28 2001 - 23:12:45 EST