[asa] Re: [asa] Rejoinder 6D From Timaeus – for Iain Strachan, Jon Tandy and Others

From: John Walley <john_walley@yahoo.com>
Date: Mon Oct 20 2008 - 21:18:53 EDT

> Rejoinder 6D From Timaeus – for Iain Strachan, Jon Tandy
> and Others

> If someone is writing code for Word
> Perfect, and makes a mistake in one line, you don’t get
> Quattro Pro as a result. What you get is Word Perfect with
> some feature disabled, or Word Perfect that is busted and
> won’t launch at all. The thought that Word Perfect
> might, given a couple of billion years, evolve into Quattro
> Pro through a series of inadvertent errors by programmers,
> and during all the intervening stages function acceptably as
> various other sorts of computer program ..., is so preposterous that
> no one with any education in computer programming would
> accept it as a possibility.

This flawed anolgy reveals the blindspot and weakness of the "strong" ID argument. It shows a stubborn insistence on God only being involved in the end results (Word Perfect and Quattro Pro) but not in between.

Granted if I wrote intelligent program A and then subjected to random mutations of the code which would almost surely be deleterious it would not result in intelligent program B. But no one who accepts TE is suggesting this.

If however as a programmer, I wrote supernaturally intelligent program A, that had the embedded design to anticipate changes (even random ones) and use those changes to possibly alter my program A's behavior, it is impossible to rule out the possibility that I may wind up with intelligent program B, without knowing what the supernatural intelligence was that was embedded, which we can't know.

But you can't deny that as a programmer I have the ability to write a program that modifies its behavior at runtime based on external inupts. We see this everyday.

This is what TE is saying and the strong ID crowd refuses to see it.



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Received on Mon Oct 20 21:19:50 2008

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