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Scientific Theory

The Big Idea for Sunday, February 16, 2014

Evolutionary theory is great at explaining things like the loss of eyesight, over time, by cave-dwelling creatures. It's terrible at explaining gain of function.

It's also terrible at explaining the speed at which speciation occurs. It doesn't explain the Cambrian Explosion, for example, or the sudden appearance of intelligence in hominids, or the rapid recovery (and net expansion) of the biosphere in the wake of at least five super-massive extinction events in the most recent 15% of Earth's existence. 

And yet, in today's lesson, Kas Thomas points out that there is a difference between a theory being wrong and being incomplete. In science, we cling to incomplete theories all the time. Especially when the alternative is complete ignorance.

 

Perspectives

  1. 1 The Trouble with Darwin
    Kas Thomas Devil in the Data
  2. 2 Evolution is Like a Self Organizing Flash Mob
    Bill Nye
  3. 3 97 – Where (and How) Evolution Is Taught In the US
    Frank Jacobs Strange Maps
  4. 4 Can We Prove String Theory?
    David Albert
 

Scientific Theory

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