Does random mean non-directed

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:42:54 AM4/11/11
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Does random mean non-directed

David Hare-Scott

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Apr 11, 2011, 2:08:24 AM4/11/11
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backspace wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed

In general usage random means lacking direction, pattern or purpose. So I
would say yes.

There are other meanings in other contexts though. Which context did you
have in mind?

Another question: how long will it be before you mutate this (apparently)
unrelated thread to asserting in some way that 'survival of the fittest' is
a tautology?

David


Garamond Lethe

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Apr 11, 2011, 3:06:40 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed

No.


backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 3:32:06 AM4/11/11
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Ok, now does non-random mean directed?

John S. Wilkins

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Apr 11, 2011, 3:59:45 AM4/11/11
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Garamond Lethe <cartogr...@gmail.com> wrote:

It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it means a
lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a general
notion that things are random when uncorrelated.

Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the hearer
understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
random.
--
John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of Sydney
http://evolvingthoughts.net
But al be that he was a philosophre,
Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre

Arkalen

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:05:56 AM4/11/11
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One could choose to define the words that way. Or not. As everyone else
is telling you, what's the context ? "random" and "directed" tend to
have very different meanings depending on the context.

Robert Carnegie: Fnord: cc talk-origins@moderators.isc.org

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:14:04 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 11, 6:42 am, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed

Go to <http://dictionary.reference.com/> and don't waste everyone's
time.

backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:21:00 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 11, 9:59 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:

> Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > > Does random mean non-directed
>
> > No.
>
> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it means a
> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a general
> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the hearer
> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> random.
> --
> John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of Sydneyhttp://evolvingthoughts.net

> But al be that he was a philosophre,
> Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre

biology means study of life or just life. Prof.Cleland from Nasa has
show that whatever life is will be a discovery like water was
discovered to be h20. until such a time one can't use the term study
of life or life, you can't study something you can't define in the
materialist paradigm.

therefore since you can't define life you can't claim to having a view
in terms of life.

David Hare-Scott

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:31:15 AM4/11/11
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I notice that you have carefully witheld the context again - I feel a gotcha
coming on.

It could mean that depending on context but not necessarily. Consider salt
crystals, these are nice neat cubes. They don't come in any other form, not
random shapes. Would we say that form was directed? I wouldn't, to me it
more accurate to describe this as an ordered structure, "directed" has
connotations that don't fit so well with such things.

We can also play with "purpose". If in some sense random means without
purpose does non-random mean purposeful? Well then whose purpose does it
serve we must ask. Do you want to run that loop in parallel and see if it
gets to the same place as the first?


David

Garamond Lethe

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:35:44 AM4/11/11
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On Mon, 11 Apr 2011 17:59:45 +1000, John S. Wilkins wrote:

> Garamond Lethe <cartogr...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
>> > Does random mean non-directed
>>
>> No.
>
> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it means a
> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a general
> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.

Not too long ago you had a tweet on you blog that led me to Theodore
Brown's book _Making Truth: Metaphor In Science_. Which should probably
tell you that you should be more responsible about what you tweet, but be
that as it may.... This will become important in a moment.

"a lack of correlation between fitness and mutation"

That's not quite right. I think it's more correct to say that mutations
are independent of fitness. Correlation would involve an x and y axis,
and while "fitness" belongs on one I'm not sure what you'd put on the
other.

However, even though we can't generate an R^2 value from mutation vs.
fitness, we can repurpose "correlation" as metaphor. We can use other
metaphors as well: "random" and "non-directed" being the examples at
hand. ("Independent" is probably another metaphor; I'm still up in the
air whether or not the mathematical formulas should be taken as metaphors
as well.)

Circling back to Backspace's question: I find both "random" and "non-
directed" to be of limited use as metaphors in evolutionary algorithms.
The generation of mutations are wholly deterministic and I've taken great
care in directing that they will be way (thus non-random and directed),
but mutations are still independent of fitness. It's also trivial to
generate algorithms where mutation generation really is random and/or
there's no direction --- so long as mutations are independent of fitness,
I'm still working with evolution.

Thus: in evolutionary algorithms, OR among readers lacking good will,
random is not the same as undirected.



> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the hearer
> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> random.

Yep.

Garamond Lethe

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:40:03 AM4/11/11
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On Mon, 11 Apr 2011 01:21:00 -0700, backspace wrote:

<snip>

> you can't study something you can't define in the materialist
> paradigm.

I do this frequently, in fact more often than not. It's not hard.

Bill

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Apr 11, 2011, 4:55:40 AM4/11/11
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Not at all. It's impressive how much you can do with fuzzy, just "good
enough" definitions. Sometimes straining too hard for precise
definitions accomplishes nothing, causes confusion, and wastes time.
[Wonder why that thought popped into my head just now.]


Burkhard

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Apr 11, 2011, 5:11:38 AM4/11/11
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On 11/04/2011 06:42, backspace wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed
>
Not necessarily, but sometimes

backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 5:11:03 AM4/11/11
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back in 1780, 1870 fitness <=> spontaneous generation or Aristotle's
internal spontainety. Robert Chamber's Vestiges used
this concept to describe how spiders magically poofed into existence
out of thin air on the ends of battery terminals - 1844. This concept
was used by darwin for origins 1859. Lucretius Theory of Necessity
became Doctrine of Derivation by Owen, Spencer in turn made this
Theory of Evolution 1852 in Leadership magazine.

Note that fitness like love, cat or random has no actual meaning, it
is an object used to represent a meaning in a knowledge context such
as spontaneous generation by Maperteus 1870 who used 'fitness' first I
think as a proxy for spontaneous generation.

See http://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTology for correct spelling
and documented references of what i just wrote.

Burkhard

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Apr 11, 2011, 5:13:07 AM4/11/11
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Not necessarily, but sometimes

Burkhard

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Apr 11, 2011, 5:23:02 AM4/11/11
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Nonsense, you simply bootstrap, starting with a tentative idea that you
later refine. If what you said were true, we would
never be able to find out new things, since the process of fining out
new things changes the meaning of what we originally looked at. (cf
"Paradox of analysis")

So in reality, we typically start with an ostensive definition, which
does the job sufficiently well: This sort of things <points at trees,
fish, bird> have something in common that these things <points at rocks,
skeleton, car> don't have. Let's call this "life". Now let's study it
and see if we can find some good diagnostic rules first, and then maybe
a definition later.
St Augustine, in De Magistro, 4, had pretty much figured that out.


Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:11:22 AM4/11/11
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we are trying to understand things that are basically unknown. In
this case, we cannot define then to study it, for we don't know what
it is.
But sometimes we had a figuration of what a thing is, so we define the
damn thing in a provisional mode. We are pending farther knowledge to
be to see if our present idea of the thing is sound or not. We need
time for that. We have not a "holybook" that tell us all about life
and the universe. Those of the holybook are other people.
Geode
.


Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:15:23 AM4/11/11
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if next month a giant meteorite hits the earth and killed us all, was
this a random event, or the hit was directed by god himself, on
purpose, because he was not happy with our praises of his greatness?
perhaps he is not happy with our out of tune voices singing his
praises.
Geode
.


Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:21:36 AM4/11/11
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this definitions are tentative. If that thing is so and so, then it
would be observed this or that. Not always function well our intents
to define. It is little like the puzzle of why a plain exploded while
flying or suddenly went down in several seconds. We need to observe
the rests of the wreck to imagine what was the cause. But we would
never be totally sure of our conclusion.
Geode
.


Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:23:41 AM4/11/11
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even it is very difficult to have a certitude. But many of us have a
few of them, for we have to believe something basic. At least the most
banal questions, of life and science.
Geode
.

Kleuskes & Moos

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:30:03 AM4/11/11
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A cow is not a goat, but not everything that is not a goat is
therefore a cow. Non-random things can still be non-directed.

Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:32:35 AM4/11/11
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> Seehttp://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTology for correct spelling

> and documented references of what i just wrote.

this would not be a problem if we accept the inherent difficulties to
have a certitude.
if we believe blindly the first crap that some scientist present, we
are going to have a problem in the future. But if we are modest and
say, "it looks like... that and that happens this way or that way."
Then, all that believers in god could throw at our face is our lack of
modesty and some of us look like full of certitudes.
if we become modest, and accept that most of our knowledge is
provisional theists are disarmed.
Then, you will be disarmed, dear backspace.
Then, as some of us here, putative scientists, are hungry of
certitudes, you can prove us that god exist. Some of us feel hunger
of certitudes. Not my case. I do not believe but the most banal
questions of everyday life, and the most banal questions of science.
Geode
.


Arkalen

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:32:40 AM4/11/11
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True to some extent. Which is why the materialist paradigm accepts
imperfect, limited or even ad-hoc definitions. Because most things in
the world can't be defined perfectly.

>
> therefore since you can't define life you can't claim to having a view
> in terms of life.
>

There are many different definitions of life depending on the context of
study, and the borders are fuzzy but this isn't a problem for studying
things well within the borders.

Arkalen

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Apr 11, 2011, 6:38:03 AM4/11/11
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Love, cat or random have no single, perfect definition. They have plenty
of meaning, or language wouldn't work. Some of those also have a
specific scientific definition that gives a context for their study,
although it might not square with all their possible common-sense meanings.

Friar Broccoli

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Apr 11, 2011, 7:59:09 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 11, 6:21 am, Geode <leopoldo.perd...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 11, 9:40 am, Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On Mon, 11 Apr 2011 01:21:00 -0700, backspace wrote:
>
> > <snip>
>
> > > you can't study something you can't define in the materialist
> > > paradigm.
>
> > I do this frequently, in fact more often than not.  It's not hard.  

.

> this definitions are tentative.  If that thing is so and so, then it
> would be observed this or that. Not always function well our intents
> to define.  It is little like the puzzle of why a plain exploded while
> flying or suddenly went down in several seconds.  We need to observe
> the rests of the wreck to imagine what was the cause.  But we would
> never be totally sure of our conclusion.

If one is studying something fundamental (repeatable) not a one-off
like a plane crash, should clear definitions necessarily result after
the study is complete?

I ask because IC is frequently attacked because it cannot be
meaningfully defined. If clear definitions are not needed is this a
valid criticism?

David Hare-Scott

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Apr 11, 2011, 8:21:19 AM4/11/11
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Absolute bollocks. In many cases study begins by saying, something is going
on here that is interesting, I am not sure what it is, I don't even have a
name for it let alone a tight definition but I must find out more. Tight
definitions may be left for the end of the process, may be re-worked along
the way or never arrive at all.

You have never said anything before that so clearly shows that you have no
idea about how science is actually done. It is not done by playing word
games, it is done by trying to find useful ways to comprehend what we
observe and that may include using words as fuzzy place holders until better
understanding is possible.

David

David Hare-Scott

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Apr 11, 2011, 8:25:34 AM4/11/11
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So it took just three iterations in a bit over three hours for you to get to
using the T word. Can I have my prize now?

David


Walter Bushell

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Apr 11, 2011, 8:57:35 AM4/11/11
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In article <1jzkmh8.zhrcf3cj0lfbN%jo...@wilkins.id.au>,

jo...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:

> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it means a
> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a general
> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the hearer
> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> random.

And crap shoots frequently lead to fecesous reasoning.

--
The Chinese pretend their goods are good and we pretend our money
is good, or is it the reverse?

backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 9:23:55 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 11, 2:21 pm, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:
> backspace wrote:
> > On Apr 11, 9:59 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:
> >> Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
> >>> On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> >>>> Does random mean non-directed
>
> >>> No.
>
> >> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it
> >> means a
> >> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a
> >> general
> >> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> >> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the
> >> hearer
> >> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> >> random.
> >> --
> >> John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of
> >> Sydneyhttp://evolvingthoughts.netBut al be that he was a

> >> philosophre,
> >> Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre
>
> > biology means study of life or just life. Prof.Cleland from Nasa has
> > show that whatever life is will be a discovery like water was
> > discovered to be h20. until such a time one can't use the term study
> > of life or life, you can't study something you can't define in the
> > materialist paradigm.
>
> > therefore since you can't define life you can't claim to having a view
> > in terms of life.
>
> Absolute bollocks.  In many cases study begins by saying, something is going
> on here that is interesting, I am not sure what it is, I don't even have a
> name for it let alone a tight definition but I must find out more.  Tight
> definitions may be left for the end of the process, may be re-worked along
> the way or never arrive at all.
>
> You have never said anything before that so clearly shows that you have no
> idea about how science is actually done.  It is not done by playing word
> games, it is done by trying to find useful ways to comprehend what we
> observe and that may include using words as fuzzy place holders until better
> understanding is possible.
>
> David

wilkins is conflating materialism with Life itself, he is reasoning in
a circle, assuming that life will be materialistic.

Erwin Moller

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Apr 11, 2011, 9:22:29 AM4/11/11
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On 4/11/2011 7:42 AM, backspace wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed
>

A guy like you, who wants to disprove evolution by means of semantics,
should at least use a question mark behind your questions.


Regards,
Erwin Moller


--
"That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without
evidence."
-- Christopher Hitchens

backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 9:31:00 AM4/11/11
to

You would stop begging the question and realize what it is that you
are assuming. Godel's theorem states that we will
always have to assume something we cannot prove.

backspace

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Apr 11, 2011, 9:32:04 AM4/11/11
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> > Seehttp://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTology for correct spelling

> > and documented references of what i just wrote.
>
> So it took just three iterations in a bit over three hours for you to get to
> using the T word.  Can I have my prize now?
>
> David

well at least I did not start on the tautology issue from the first
post, you have to give me some credit :)

Will in New Haven

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Apr 11, 2011, 10:11:57 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 11, 3:32 am, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:

> On Apr 11, 8:08 am, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:
>
> > backspace wrote:
> > > Does random mean non-directed
>
> > In general usage random means lacking direction, pattern or purpose. So I
> > would say yes.
>
> > There are other meanings in other contexts though. Which context did you
> > have in mind?
>
> > Another question: how long will it be before you mutate this (apparently)
> > unrelated thread to asserting in some way that 'survival of the fittest' is
> > a tautology?
>
> > David
>
> Ok, now does non-random mean directed?

It can mean directed or it can mean predetermined in some other way.
If the beginning state of a situation is given then the laws of
physics can sometimes tell us what the result will be without any
direction being given.

--
Will in New Haven

Dana Tweedy

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Apr 11, 2011, 10:10:04 AM4/11/11
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On Apr 10, 11:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed

No, random means: "Having no specific pattern, purpose, or
objective" ( http://www.thefreedictionary.com/random) "Non-directed"
means without direction. Something non directed can be random, but
not everything non directed is random. Natural processes are non
directed, but aren't necessarily random.


DJT

Dana Tweedy

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Apr 11, 2011, 10:14:15 AM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 7:23 am, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 11, 2:21 pm, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:
>
>
>
>
>
> > backspace wrote:
> > > On Apr 11, 9:59 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:
> > >> Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > >>> On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > >>>> Does random mean non-directed
>
> > >>> No.
>
> > >> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it
> > >> means a
> > >> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a
> > >> general
> > >> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> > >> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the
> > >> hearer
> > >> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> > >> random.
> > >> --
> > >> John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of
> > >> Sydneyhttp://evolvingthoughts.netButal be that he was a

> > >> philosophre,
> > >> Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre
>
> > > biology means study of life or just life. Prof.Cleland from Nasa has
> > > show that whatever life is will be a discovery like water was
> > > discovered to be h20. until such a time one can't use the term study
> > > of life or life, you can't study something you can't define in the
> > > materialist paradigm.
>
> > > therefore since you can't define life you can't claim to having a view
> > > in terms of life.
>
> > Absolute bollocks.  In many cases study begins by saying, something is going
> > on here that is interesting, I am not sure what it is, I don't even have a
> > name for it let alone a tight definition but I must find out more.  Tight
> > definitions may be left for the end of the process, may be re-worked along
> > the way or never arrive at all.
>
> > You have never said anything before that so clearly shows that you have no
> > idea about how science is actually done.  It is not done by playing word
> > games, it is done by trying to find useful ways to comprehend what we
> > observe and that may include using words as fuzzy place holders until better
> > understanding is possible.
>
> > David
>
> wilkins is conflating materialism with Life itself, he is reasoning in
> a circle, assuming that life will be materialistic.- Hide quoted text -
>
> - Show quoted text -

Where did Dr. Wilkins do anything of the sort? Life is a natural
process, so it must involve the material. If there is a non material
element to life, that is beyond the ability of science to
determine.


DJT

jillery

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Apr 11, 2011, 10:18:51 AM4/11/11
to
> > > Seehttp://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTologyfor correct spelling

> > > and documented references of what i just wrote.
>
> > this would not be a problem if we accept the inherent difficulties to
> > have a certitude.
> > if we believe blindly the first crap that some scientist present, we
> > are going to have a problem in the future. But if we are modest and
> > say, "it looks like... that and that happens this way or that way."
> > Then, all that believers in god could throw at our face is our lack of
> > modesty and some of us look like full of certitudes.
> > if we become modest, and accept that most of our knowledge is
> > provisional theists are disarmed.
>
> You would stop begging the question and realize what it is that you
> are assuming. Godel's theorem states that we will
> always have to assume something we cannot prove.


Ah, so the trick is to minimize the use of assumptions, and to
recognize assumptions and the limits they place on precise
conclusions.

Easy enough to say, hard enough to do.

Paul J Gans

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:15:39 PM4/11/11
to
backspace <steph...@gmail.com> wrote:
>Does random mean non-directed

It depends on what one means by "directed". I can produce a
totally random walk that will start in one predefined spot
and end in another. But that is not what is normally meant
by "random".

--
--- Paul J. Gans

Paul J Gans

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:17:26 PM4/11/11
to
backspace <steph...@gmail.com> wrote:
>On Apr 11, 8:08 am, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:

>> backspace wrote:
>> > Does random mean non-directed
>>
>> In general usage random means lacking direction, pattern or purpose.  So I
>> would say yes.
>>
>> There are other meanings in other contexts though.  Which context did you
>> have in mind?
>>
>> Another question: how long will it be before you mutate this (apparently)
>> unrelated thread to asserting in some way that 'survival of the fittest' is
>> a tautology?
>>
>> David

>Ok, now does non-random mean directed?

No.

What are you trying to accomplish here. Does "random" mean
"blue" to you. If you answer no, I will ask if "random" means
"red" or "Toyota" or whatever?

hersheyh

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:30:04 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 3:59 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:
> Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > > Does random mean non-directed
>
> > No.
>
> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it means a
> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a general
> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the hearer
> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> random.
> --
> John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of Sydneyhttp://evolvingthoughts.net
> But al be that he was a philosophre,

> Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre

As John so clearly points out, the way that "randomness" is
empirically verified in the case of evolution is by the lack of
correlation between the two variables, "relative fitness of a
phenotype" and "mutation rate to that phenotype". To date, nearly all
such studies have demonstrated a lack of correlation. There have been
a few claims of non-randomness in nature between "relative fitness"
and "mutation rate to a phenotype", but in nearly all these cases
studied, the change has been due to a cryptic change in "mutation
rate" rather than a change in significant correlation between the two
variables. However, it is now possible for *humans* to produce
specific directed mutations and introduce them into organisms (at a
specific rate determined by natural mechanisms for such introduction)
that they think might affect fitness (positively or negatively). That
would be introducing mutation with a teleological intent in the mind
of the human designer. But such teleological intent is not the case
for mutation in nature. Mutations in the absence of humans have a
"cause" (chemical mutagenesis) but not a "director" (an agent working
for a teleological end goal).

"Selection", OTOH, occurs, by definition, when there is non-randomness
(a significant causal difference) between two phenotypes in a
specified environment (or a randomized set of environments) on a
relevant measurable metric of reproductive success. Specifically,
selection exists when one of the two phenotypic variables examined has
a significantly detectably higher reproductive success relative to the
other in the specified or randomized environment(s). "Non-selection"
is, by definition, when there is no significant difference between the
two phenotypic variables on a relevant measurable metric of
reproductive success.

"Directed or non-directed" may be somewhat useful in describing
certain human-designed gene changes, but is useless in describing non-
human designed gene changes. Mutations do have a "cause". After all,
one can change the *rate* at which particular mutational types (say a
G->A transition) occur by adding or removing mutagens to the
environment (or by mutating genes involved in DNA repair). But that
doesn't mean the mutations are "directed" by the blind, unintelligent
mutagen for some causal end purpose (teleological purpose).

And selection, when it occurs, also has a "cause". But whether that
"cause" is due to a blind, unintelligent, environmental factor or due
to human (or other organism) intervention and intention is irrelevant
to whether or not "selection" has occurred.

You need to tell us how you propose to distinguish empirically between
"causally directed relationship" and "teleologically directed causal
relationship". The two are not identical. H2O has a causally
directed relationship with O2 and H2, but there is no obvious
"teleologic intent" behind that relationship.

Burkhard

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:37:20 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 12:59 pm, Friar Broccoli <elia...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 11, 6:21 am, Geode <leopoldo.perd...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > On Apr 11, 9:40 am, Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > > On Mon, 11 Apr 2011 01:21:00 -0700, backspace wrote:
>
> > > <snip>
>
> > > > you can't study something you can't define in the materialist
> > > > paradigm.
>
> > > I do this frequently, in fact more often than not. It's not hard.
>
>  .
>
> > this definitions are tentative. If that thing is so and so, then it
> > would be observed this or that. Not always function well our intents
> > to define. It is little like the puzzle of why a plain exploded while
> > flying or suddenly went down in several seconds. We need to observe
> > the rests of the wreck to imagine what was the cause. But we would
> > never be totally sure of our conclusion.
>
> If one is studying something fundamental (repeatable) not a one-off
> like a plane crash, should clear definitions necessarily result after
> the study is complete?


That would be too strong, for me at least. You don;t need to end up
with a clear definition, but what you want is some interesting
progress. Finding some diagnostic criteria that make it possible for
most people, most of the time to agree whether or not a given X falls
under the term seems like a good thing, e.g., but is not a definition
in the traditional sense.

Mitchell Coffey

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:46:04 PM4/11/11
to
On 4/11/2011 1:42 AM, backspace wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed
>

Is that "non-" in the pattern or design sense?

Mitchell Coffey

Steven L.

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Apr 11, 2011, 12:52:35 PM4/11/11
to
"backspace" <steph...@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:bb463031-1ee3-4025...@e26g2000vbz.googlegroups.com:

> Does random mean non-directed

Clearly not.

When you're throwing a pair of dice, the dice are moving through the air
and landing on the table according to the laws of physics. (The law of
gravity keeps those dice falling to the table rather than levitating up
to the sky.) And you, a human being, are throwing the dice by conscious
volition.

But attempting to predict the numbers on the dice that will turn up
involves so many variables and so many opportunities for nonlinear
outcomes, that you might as well give up and say that statistically, the
more times you do this, the more often a seven will come up as opposed
to a two or a twelve.

-- Steven L.

Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:00:08 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 12:59 pm, Friar Broccoli <elia...@gmail.com> wrote:

well, I do not know what IC you are talking about. I was last week
watching some documentaries about great mathematicians and... well,
even in Maths there are some incertitudes.
A great mathematician, I don't remember now his name, wrote a book
trying to prove that 2+2=4 It was not an easy task and he was even a
little unsure of his work.

We can ask for clear definitions when the ideas about a set of data
are contradictory or give us way to confusion. To have a concrete
discussion we need a definition. If we lack a definition there is not
a way to understand what are we arguing about. Then, a definition is
a starting point to engage in an argument. So, a definition no needs
to be the best, or the only definition possible. But we need it to
starting thinking, or reasoning about. A definition is only valid on
certain conditions to start thinking. If you change the definition of
a concept the path of the argument has to change also.
Geode
.

Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:05:15 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 2:23 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 11, 2:21 pm, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:
>
>
>
> > backspace wrote:
> > > On Apr 11, 9:59 am, j...@wilkins.id.au (John S. Wilkins) wrote:
> > >> Garamond Lethe <cartographi...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > >>> On Apr 10, 10:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> > >>>> Does random mean non-directed
>
> > >>> No.
>
> > >> It can, but that is only one meaning. In evolutionary biology it
> > >> means a
> > >> lack of correlation between fitness and mutation, as part of a
> > >> general
> > >> notion that things are random when uncorrelated.
>
> > >> Words are often homonyms, and "random" is one of those. What the
> > >> hearer
> > >> understands by a homonym is a bit of a crap shoot. That is to say,
> > >> random.
> > >> --
> > >> John S. Wilkins, Associate, Philosophy, University of
> > >> Sydneyhttp://evolvingthoughts.netButal be that he was a

> > >> philosophre,
> > >> Yet hadde he but litel gold in cofre
>
> > > biology means study of life or just life. Prof.Cleland from Nasa has
> > > show that whatever life is will be a discovery like water was
> > > discovered to be h20. until such a time one can't use the term study
> > > of life or life, you can't study something you can't define in the
> > > materialist paradigm.
>
> > > therefore since you can't define life you can't claim to having a view
> > > in terms of life.
>
> > Absolute bollocks.  In many cases study begins by saying, something is going
> > on here that is interesting, I am not sure what it is, I don't even have a
> > name for it let alone a tight definition but I must find out more.  Tight
> > definitions may be left for the end of the process, may be re-worked along
> > the way or never arrive at all.
>
> > You have never said anything before that so clearly shows that you have no
> > idea about how science is actually done.  It is not done by playing word
> > games, it is done by trying to find useful ways to comprehend what we
> > observe and that may include using words as fuzzy place holders until better
> > understanding is possible.
>
> > David
>
> wilkins is conflating materialism with Life itself, he is reasoning in
> a circle, assuming that life will be materialistic.

he is assuming in materialistic terms, like me, because we do not have
any experience on things immaterial.

can you show us some examples of things immaterial for us to
consider? Please, show us some samples.
Geode
.


John Stockwell

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:11:18 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 10, 11:42 pm, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Does random mean non-directed

"Random" means following a probability distribution. "Radomness" is a
model of behaviors of outcomes of processes.

"Directed or non directed" refer to particular processes.

There is no general way of inferring a process of origin of an outcome
from the
outcomes. It has to be done on a case by case basis. Nor is there a
guarantee
that one can determine the process from the outcomes.

-John

John Stockwell

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:12:36 PM4/11/11
to
On Apr 11, 1:32 am, backspace <stephan...@gmail.com> wrote:
> On Apr 11, 8:08 am, "David Hare-Scott" <sec...@nospam.com> wrote:

>
> > backspace wrote:
> > > Does random mean non-directed
>
> > In general usage random means lacking direction, pattern or purpose. So I
> > would say yes.
>
> > There are other meanings in other contexts though. Which context did you
> > have in mind?
>
> > Another question: how long will it be before you mutate this (apparently)
> > unrelated thread to asserting in some way that 'survival of the fittest' is
> > a tautology?
>
> > David
>
> Ok, now does non-random mean directed?

No. Non-random means that the outcomes are regular, and such
regularity makes
the outcomes predictable by more than a statistical law.

Geode

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:18:32 PM4/11/11
to
> > > Seehttp://scratchpad.wikia.com/wiki/TauTologyfor correct spelling

> > > and documented references of what i just wrote.
>
> > this would not be a problem if we accept the inherent difficulties to
> > have a certitude.
> > if we believe blindly the first crap that some scientist present, we
> > are going to have a problem in the future. But if we are modest and
> > say, "it looks like... that and that happens this way or that way."
> > Then, all that believers in god could throw at our face is our lack of
> > modesty and some of us look like full of certitudes.
> > if we become modest, and accept that most of our knowledge is
> > provisional theists are disarmed.
>
> You would stop begging the question and realize what it is that you
> are assuming. Godel's theorem states that we will
> always have to assume something we cannot prove.
>
> > Then, as some of us here, putative scientists, are hungry of
> > certitudes, you can prove us that god exist.
>
>

of course, we are always assuming things. Even when we have cow
before our eyes, we are assuming this animal is a cow. Thinking and
reasoning is all about assumptions, not certitudes. When we talk
about number pi, we are assuming all the operations we had done to
establish the value of pi, were correct. Even, we are assuming that
other people before us were checking on the number pi, and we assume
this number is right. The same with many other questions, like the
distance from the earth to the sun, or the mass of Jupiter. Many of
this numbers we had not the time to check it by ourselves, for we
assume they are right, and had been verified my many competent
mathematicians and astronomers.

Then in science, we have not dogmas. We have not certitudes, we have
only assumptions. Some look more nice than others. But they are only
assumptions. But we work a little bit as if they were unshakable
truths. We are working our maths as they were a solid building. But
we have to take care, for in sudden quirk, our minds do something
wrong and we are full of shit. This is not very common, but it occurs
from time to time.

Then, if you are trying to smear shit on our faces, for being in favor
of "scientific assumptions", you should check your own mind. You
should try to examine what sort of crap your mind is full of.
Geode
.

r norman

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Apr 11, 2011, 1:21:30 PM4/11/11