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A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Blurs

How was National Geographic able to publish an artist’s reconstruction of Homo floriensis (aka Hobbit Man) the same day Nature published the find? (See 10/27/2004 headline).  Martin Kemp (U. of Oxford, UK) explains in the Dec. 2 issue1 how Peter Schouten, an artist, got the gig: Tim Flannery, director of the South Australian Museum …. […]

Archaeology Is Hindered by Evolutionary Assumptions

Why was a complex village uncovered in Uruguay called “unexpected”?  Peter W. Stahl (anthropology, Binghamtom U.) asks the question in the Dec. 2 issue of Nature:1 Evidence of unexpected complexity in an ancient community in Uruguay is a further blow to the conventional view of prehistoric development in marginal areas of lowland South America.   […]

Candidates Vie for Stupid Evolution Quote of the Week

Contributions for the weekly prize sometimes come in as numerous as contestants at the Boston Marathon.  You can send in your contributions or vote on the following: Evolution as sculptor:  Sid Perkins, in Science News, submitted three entries in an article on penguin evolution: Early in penguin evolution, the bones, especially in the wings and […]

Will it Become Unlawful to Think Critically?

The legality of disclaimers in biology textbooks will be decided by a U.S. District Court in Atlanta, Georgia.  A judge will hear the case Nov. 8 about stickers the Cobb County school board put in the books that say, “This textbook contains material on evolution.  Evolution is a theory, not a fact, regarding the origin […]

Platypus Has 10 Sex Chromosomes

The duck-billed platypus has thrown another curveball at evolutionary theory.  Long puzzling to phylogenists for its mosaic of features that make it seem part mammal, bird and reptile, it has now revealed a genome with 10 sex chromosomes – 10 X in the female, and 5 X plus 5 Y in the male.  Moreover, the […]

“Evolution Stories Are Subtle and Complex” – Truth or Euphemism?

A worm brain has photoreceptors similar to those in humans.  What does it mean?  Elizabeth Pennisi in Science1 sets the stage, commenting on work by Arendt et al. in the same issue,2 “Ciliary Photoreceptors with a Vertebrate-Type Opsin in an Invertebrate Brain.”  One might think this demonstrates common ancestry, but Pennisi explains that it’s not […]

Movie Sequel

Exploration Films has done it again: it just released Part III of its popular documentary series on Incredible Creatures That Defy Evolution.  Former evolutionist Jobe Martin and narrator David Hames take viewers on a quest around the world for animals both ordinary and exotic that have design features that challenge evolutionary theory. These films are […]

Bacterial Flagellum Reveals New Structural Complexity

The bacterial flagellum, the unofficial mascot of the Intelligent Design movement, got more praise from the evolutionary journal Nature this week: Samatey et al.1 analyzed the hook region in detail and found that it is composed of 120 copies of a specialized protein that “reveals the intricate molecular interactions and a plausible switching mechanism for […]

Middle Earth in Indonesia?  Fossil “Hobbits” Smash Evolutionary Ring

Here we go again: another alleged human ancestor fossil that shakes up the evolutionary family tree.  No sooner had Nature1 announced a little 1-meter tall fossil female “hominin” that the discoverers classified as Homo erectus, that the science news media like MSNBC and the BBC flew into action reporting it as “fossil hobbits”  They seem […]

How Plants Wax Their Leaves

Plants have a waxy coating on their leaves, some more and some less, a fact many gardeners may notice without much thought.  A recent paper by two plant biologists in Science1 reveals that even this seemingly ordinary feature comes about only through a complex process in plant cells.  The waxy coating, called the cuticle, is […]

Dinosaurs Survived Cold Arctic

Dinosaurs, ferns and trees grew in Canada’s far north provinces, according to EurekAlert report from McGill University.  “You wouldn’t expect it, yet dinosaurs and a great variety of plants lived in the High Arctic 240 to 65 million years ago,” said Hans Larsson, leader of research over two years.  Who wouldn’t expect it?  Evolutionists.

DNA Coding Multiplies in Complexity

As if the discovery that DNA is a language translation system was not enough to challenge evolutionary theories, it is becoming increasing clear that DNA is a code operated by another code.  Science on Oct. 221 had a feature on gene regulation, which writer Elizabeth Pennisi termed “Genome’s Second Code.”  She began, “The genome has […]

Adult Stem Cells Continue to Work Miracle Cures

Chalk up two more amazing successes for adult stem cells (not derived from human embryos, like the controversial ES stem cells): 1. Blindness:  The BBC News reported that stem cells from the back of the eyeball might be able to restore sight to those afflicted with macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness. 2. Parkinson’s […]

Did Language Evolve by Natural Selection?

In the Oct 14 issue of Nature,1 Gary Marcus (Dept. of Psychology, New York University) appears conflicted about how human language arose.  He wants to attribute it to a Darwinian process: If, as François Jacob famously argued, evolution is like a tinkerer who builds something new by using whatever is close at hand, then from […]

Disembodied Brain Flies Jet Aircraft

Researchers at University of Florida claim to have connected rat brains neurons in a dish to electrodes, which learned to run an F22 flight simulator. We can’t speak to the validity of this claim or its interpretation, but what stands out in the article is the awe over the computational abilities of the human brain: […]
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