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Evolution Named Scientific Achievement of 2005

Zonk posted more than 7 years ago | from the science-wins dept.

Science 943

lazy_hp writes "The BBC reports that research into evolution's inner working has been named rtop science achievement of 2005 From the article: 'The prestigious US journal Science publishes its top 10 list of major endeavours at the end of each year. The number one spot was awarded jointly to several studies that illuminated the intricate workings of evolution. The announcement comes in the same week that a US court banned the teaching of intelligent design in classrooms.'"

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And the winner for 2006 is... (2, Insightful)

Quaoar (614366) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327963)

Common sense.

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (1, Insightful)

Jack9 (11421) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328045)

Common sense told us the earth was flat. /obvious

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (1)

Stargoat (658863) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328134)

The ancients knew the earth was round. Hell, stand in the right place in the US Midwest, and you can see the curvature.

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (3, Interesting)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328190)

Or on any shoreline.

Just look on the horizon with a telescope -- you'll see a ship's mast come into view before the deck. Didn't this strike anyone as odd back then?

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (1)

williamhb (758070) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328056)

I wouldn't bet on it. It's being reported as an award for the best scientific achievement, when it's just an editorial list of "what topics were hot this year".

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328076)

Common sense died off a long time ago as part of the evolutionary process in favor of big government/business that does all of our thinking for us.

Re:And the winner for 2006 is... (2, Interesting)

EnronHaliburton2004 (815366) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328172)

Well, ID is still taught in Kansas, Ohio and Georgia.

I think the real winner of this in 2006 is the people who need a cheap labor source. After all,if you get a crap-ass education in one of these misguided school districts, it's going to be hard to get a job that pays more then minimum wage.

Some of the backers of ID are really just aiming to keep people uneducated and within control. Liberty will eventually win out-- the Catholics tried to control education and discourse 500 years ago, and they eventually lost. Hopefully the promoters won't get as violent as the Catholics did. Somehow I don't think that Jesus would approve of torture and burning people at the stake.

As the headline on fark.com said.... (5, Funny)

maddogdelta (558240) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327964)

Nominated for 2006, GRAVITY!!!!

Re:As the headline on fark.com said.... (1)

Syrrh (700452) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328113)

Aw, don't be silly. The award is for 'scientific acheivement'.

Not inventions. Duh.

Re:As the headline on fark.com said.... (4, Funny)

voice_of_all_reason (926702) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328213)

You mean "intelligent falling", right?

o rly (1)

danzormczor (933867) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327967)

what about stem cell cloning? oh yeah, that was all a lie. scientists are all evil, am i right

In other news... (3, Funny)

Silverlancer (786390) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327969)

Gravity to be named the top scientific achievment of 2006. Expect the contest for 2007 to be between the invention of Algebra and the discovery of atoms.

Re:In other news... (1)

OctoberSky (888619) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328000)

No I nominated Chris Columbus for "Finding America" I mean, no one knew it existed before he got here... Not even the Native People who lived here.
They were all "Hey, where the hell are we?" until Columbus showed up.
After Columbus they're all "Hey, why is everyone dying?"

Re:In other news... (1)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328165)

Whenever anyone brings this up, I always draw the following analogy: Christopher Columbus is like Microsoft. He wasn't the first to discover America and his efforts didn't necessarily end up with good results, but he made it popular to the masses. You could probably substitute AOL in there, too.

Re:In other news... (3, Funny)

emjaycue (634752) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328052)

Won't ever happen. As everyone knows, gravity is just a THEORY.

Hmm... (4, Insightful)

gorzek (647352) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327971)

Not that I support Intelligent Design (I think it's hokum, personally), but I can't help thinking this decision is politically-motivated. Doesn't mean it's not deserved, but it sure is convenient, coming on the heels of the ID court decision.

Aw, what do I know?

Re:Hmm... (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327988)

Actually the intelligent design people were told this was goig to happen by a higher power(CIA informants working for Bush) So they were trying to fill the headlines up to drown out this news.

How many people can I piss off or on today.

Re:Hmm... (0)

gorzek (647352) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327996)

Hm, maybe ID is right. Only a truly Intelligent Designer could create such stupid people.

Re:Hmm... (1)

koekepeer (197127) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328112)

nice paradox in your post - stupid people, created in his own image.

Re:Hmm... (1)

hesiod (111176) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328183)

> nice paradox in your post - stupid people, created in his own image.

I.D. proponents skirt around issues like that all the time. The "in his image" thing is biblical, and the designer doesn't have to be The Bible's god. Until they convince someone of that, then it's their god again, suddenly.

Re:Hmm... (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327998)

There have been some pretty big developments, particularly in comparisons of chimp and human genomes, which is going to give us an enormous understanding of just what, at the genetic level, makes us human. That being said, I do think the victory of reason over Medievalism in Dover (though a limited one), has played a part.

The saddest part is that no matter how vast our understanding of evolution becomes, there will always be those who, for religious or logically unsound reasons, or just out of plain ignorance and misplaced incredulity, will reject it, and there will be those that wish to misrepresent or out-and-out destroy science simply to prop up their too-deeply held superstitions.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

gorzek (647352) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328034)

What I find saddest about the ID movement is that they have the wrong-headed idea that evolution rules out an Intelligent Designer. Nothing about evolution implies it is random and undirected. While each generation is certainly full of mutations that have no purpose, over the long run all species evolve traits that assure their survival, a form of genetic "intelligence" itself.

ID proponents would be better served examining how evolution *validates* their viewpoint. Just because evolution doesn't specify an Intelligent Designer doesn't mean there isn't one, just that we can't prove one scientifically. For some reason, being unable to prove something scientifically means, to some people, it just doesn't exist.

I'm not a Christian, and I don't have a firm belief in any kind of God, but ID supporters are clearly looking at evolution the wrong way.

Re:Hmm... (3, Insightful)

Nato_Uno (34428) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328141)

Interestingly enough, personal beliefs aside, I think the *evolution* people are looking at ID the wrong way, insisting that "ID proponents are all religious whackos!" and "ID rules out evolution!".

There are prominent examples of *non-theists* who are proponents of ID (like Michael Behe and Francis Crick, for example - Google is your friend).

It's interesting to me that this whole thing has become a religious debate. I read the sticker that the Kansas school board wanted to attach to the textbooks and didn't think it was all that offensive - just pointed out that there are holes in evolution and that it should be approached with an open mind - much like Behe and Crick (and others) have said, too... although Crick was pretty well abused for his panspermia position, too, so I guess it's not all that surprising. I guess the worst thing you can do is suggest the scientific community might be *wrong*... >)

Nato

Re:Hmm... (4, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328178)

If you read the Dover ruling, Judge Jones mentions this, and points out (and this applies to Kansas as well) that evolution is singled out for this sort of "just a theory, got holes" treatment. No other aspect of biology, no other scientific theory is forced into the same corner. The argument that there are holes in theory of evolution is correct, but then again, all theories have holes in them; unanswered questions, some data that doesn't fit neatly and the like. So it goes directly to motivation. The only reason that evolution is singled out is because those trying to get these stickers put on textbooks and those wanting pamphlets read in science class are trying to undermine the teaching of evolution. If this was an issue of intellectual and academic honesty, then every bit of science taught in a public school would have its own sticker or pamphlet explaining that there are holes in said theories. But as this is a religously motivated attack, evolution is singled out.

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328150)

The root problem with Intelligent Design is that it is compatible with all possible observations. Or, to put it another way, it has no explanatory power. In that alone it is meaningless to science. If you can't make predictions, if you can't formulate tests to falsify it, if any data gathered or potentially to be gathered, fits within the model, then you really don't have a model at all. ID was formulated intentionally in this manner, because it's part of the Big Tent strategy that the Discovery Institute and its allies have formulated. It's a political and legal strategy to get as many diverse groups whose only real commonality is "God did it" (where "it" can mean anything from special creation to theistic evolution).

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

CastrTroy (595695) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328224)

This is where ID really fails in my mind. They say that because we don't fully understand evolution, and because of the gaps, that it must of been an intelligent being who did it. This sounds a lot to me like Mercury dragging the sun accross the sky in a chariot as an explanation because we didn't understand why the sun moved accross the sky. Just because we don't understand something fully, does not give any proof that an intelligent being was at work. This explanation has been used throughout history for things we don't understand, and it has been proven wrong. Unless there is real evidence that an intelligent being is doing something, which there never is, then you can't say that something is happening because of the intelligent being.

Re:Hmm... (2, Interesting)

Asakusa (941025) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328054)

Understand that some people live by faith or belief in something greater than "man is an animal". It doesn't make a difference to you does it? So how can it be "sad" if the people who believe in the Jesus, Hail Mary Mother Ghost of Alah or whatever, are happy believing in such?

I personally am not Protestant or into Judaism, but I don't wholly subscribe to the idea that I'm just meat. Finding out how about how my body did develop is a vital activity, on the other hand.

Re:Hmm... (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328198)

Whether you are right or wrong about "we're just meat" argument has nothing to do with the debate. Evolution, like all scientific theories, has nothing to say on these philosophical and metaphysical matters. Why not complain about quantum mechanics or hydrodynamics, because they work on purely naturalistic premises? Evolution has nothing to say on God or the meaning of life, but then again, neither does any other scientific theory.

Re:Hmm... (4, Insightful)

hesiod (111176) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328222)

> So how can it be "sad" if the people who believe in [x], are happy believing in such?

If one finds happiness in slavery, is he still a slave? Is it still wrong to treat him as a slave? Even if not "wrong," is it still sad?

Re:Hmm... (2, Insightful)

Scoria (264473) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328014)

Actually, it's simple. There is no scientific evidence that would support Intelligent Design. Intelligent Design is not a valid scientific theory, as it is not even remotely predictable. It's also unlikely that one could validate Intelligent Design through observation.

Meanwhile, the theory of evolution is supported by both strong scientific evidence and observation. It is also predictable.

One is the product of science, and belongs in a science class. The other is not.

Re:Hmm... (1)

Wonko the Sane (25252) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328028)

I think you mean predictive, not predictable.

Re:Hmm... (1)

Scoria (264473) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328036)

Yes, you're right. It has been a long day.

Re:Hmm... (2, Funny)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328089)

It must be Friday- time for another flame war on ID vs Evolution.

You can't pick Evolution over ID as a scientific theory based on the evidence or on the testible hypothesis or on falsifiable hypothesis- the two are completely equivalent on those criteria, because the evidence used is exactly the same evidence. "God did it" and "Random Chance did it" are both theological statements that are logically indistinguishable from one another.

You claim that ID is not predictible- but since it predicts the exact same outcomes that evolution does, that would mean that evolution wasn't predictable either. You claim that ID cannot be supported by observation; yet religious visions have occured throughout human history, and actually, since ID insists that God used evolution as a method, the natural world observations for ID and evolution are also exactly the same. You claim that ID is not supported by strong scientific evidence- but where's the strong scientific evidence for randomization, the one key difference between atheistic religious evolution and Christian religious Intelligent Design?

If ID is not science, then evolution certainly isn't either. If evolution is science, so are the scientific portions of ID. But of course, the worshipers of Popplar and demarcation methods such as falsifiability will never actually see that...

Re:Hmm... (5, Insightful)

gorzek (647352) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328116)

But ID and evolution are not equivalent. One *assumes* an Intelligent Designer. The other does not. That evolution doesn't *require* such a Designer doesn't mean one doesn't exist, only that the theory does not rely on one.

Your argument actually collapses on itself, because you have essentially said ID does nothing but add a layer of complexity to evolution--a layer that is unnecessary, does not aid our understanding of the evolutionary process, and does not alter observational results.

That is exactly why I oppose ID being taught as an "alternative" or "replacement" for evolution. It is not, it is simply an ill-conceived modification designed to inject monotheistic dogma into a realm where it has no place.

Re:Hmm... (1)

cliffy2000 (185461) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328135)

if it has no mechanism for being false, it's pointless. it may or not be true, but there's no reason to discuss it.

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328155)

"Random Chance did it"
While randomness comes into it, evolution describes the non-random survival of randomly varying life. Evolution is exactly not random, you have been mislead. You do not understand evolution. I would suggest you take the time to read the most rudimentary book on the subject. I would recommend River out of Eden by Richard Dawkins.

Re:Hmm... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328218)

You can't pick Evolution over ID as a scientific theory based on the evidence or on the testible hypothesis or on falsifiable hypothesis- the two are completely equivalent on those criteria, because the evidence used is exactly the same evidence. "God did it" and "Random Chance did it" are both theological statements that are logically indistinguishable from one another.
p Except that evolutionary theory does not say "random chance did it". You are basing your premise on a strawman of evolution. Evolution is merely "the genetic makeup of a population changes over time".

Evolution is predictable? (0, Redundant)

COMON$ (806135) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328093)

Wow, I want to read the paper that proves that. Not that I support the ID movement, but predicting the outcome of chance is quite a stretch.

I was taight evolution was science because it was testable. Theism is not science because it is untestable.

ID could be science if we could show that some existing race put us here for their own purposes, but that would involve finding them.

Re:Evolution is predictable? (2, Informative)

gorzek (647352) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328146)

I'm afraid I can't point you directly to any research, but the general idea is that we can predict with some accuracy how a species will adapt to a chance in its environment. It is also something we have witnessed on a limited scale in real-time. One example is moth coloration in response to air pollution. We have actually witnessed and documented phenomena such as this, which demonstrate evolution via natural selection happens on a pretty regular basis, even now. Here is a (very brief) link, with discussion of the moth phenomenon: http://anthro.palomar.edu/evolve/evolve_2.htm [palomar.edu]

Re:Hmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328035)

Of course it was. The award is supposed to go to one news item. From sciencemag.org's web site:

Each year, the editors and news staff of Science look back at the big science stories of the past 12 months, and dub one of them the Breakthrough of the Year.

Yet they lumped several smaller related events so evolution could win.

Yup (1)

everphilski (877346) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328038)

I would be inclined to agree with you. Science (the magazine) is making its stance known in the whole debacle (in case anyone didn't know already). To me the science article here [sciencemag.org] wasn't that convincing. Most of it was genetics anyways - one could argue genetics was the big breakthrough. (personally I'm a fan of runner up #2...)

-everphilski-

Re:Hmm... (1)

COMON$ (806135) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328044)

FTA

Colin Norman, news editor of Science, said the choice was based solely on the merits of the research, not the battle over intelligent design.

I still agree with you, politically motivated, I wish they could have shown a little more tact and rather than putting up a headline such as "ID you suck, naner naner". I wish they would have been a little more specific to the study that received credit for the award.

Re:Hmm... (1)

SmallOak (869450) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328059)

"Colin Norman, news editor of Science, said the choice was based solely on the merits of the research, not the battle over intelligent design." "Winner: Evolution in action. Genome sequencing and painstaking field observations shed light on the intricacies of how evolution works." Right now it will be impossible to determine one way or the other. When things get this escalated, one would have to be a specialist in both evolutionary theory and genetics to determine if this was really a good year. I was also thinking that ID only works in context of a 'Abraham god' (jew/chistian/muslim). In the context of Buddhist, Shinto, or many others it does not work at all even as an concept cause the gods don't work that way.

Re:Hmm... (1)

MrCoke (445461) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328080)

These are indeed strange times if countering pseudo-science with sound scientific data is called 'political'.

I'd go even farther (1)

LeonGeeste (917243) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328105)

Even with all the progress evolution has made, how is it such a great achievement? An achievement means some good you can now do for humankind, or have done, not merely learning stuff. With all the progress in evolutionary theory, what does that allow us to do now? Cure diseases we couldn't before? No, not yet. Predict abnormalities we couldn't before? No, not yet. Genetically modify people? No, not yet. Speed up evolutionary processes? No, not yet. It just seems so many fields are far more worthy.

I mean, we could find the climate history of a distant planet, and that would be a great *intellectual* achiement, but benefit for mankind? Meh. (Unless it was at some point a Terran world.) I think these people need to learn that success in science is defined in what you can *predict* and *produce*, not what you can learn about the past.

Scooped again (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14327972)

Witchvox had this story early this morning.

Doh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14327978)

But everyone knows evolution was invented by Satan himself!

Why isn't... (1)

Dante Shamest (813622) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327991)

..cloning in the list!? =(

...if you don't get it, read this [bbc.co.uk] .

Why isn't... (1)

Viper Daimao (911947) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328083)

..cloning on the list!? =(

...if you don't get it, read this [bbc.co.uk] .

LOL (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14327997)

LOL no it's not an intelligent design.

For a horrified, thankfully brief, moment... (4, Funny)

Homology (639438) | more than 7 years ago | (#14327999)

I thought the mail client Evolution was named "Scientific Achievement", until I got past the headline...

My fellow Christians: Strategize (-1, Flamebait)

CrazyJim1 (809850) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328007)

There is an agenda to bring as many people to faith, and keep away things that may challlenge someone's faith. But I think Christians start off in every angle and don't strategize things through. For example,"I think the planets should be renamed because they're named after fake gods." And that may happen way down in the future, but its not something I want to push now. Right now, people should be doing plain ol evengalicizing like Jesus taught, or using the internet to bring people to faith. There are some fights that just can't be won with the level of faith people have now. If people gain more and more faith, God will help people out more and more too. I'm for intelligent design because I know its true, but I don't think that is the best place to spend my time and energy.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (2, Insightful)

110010001000 (697113) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328055)

How about you guys just keep to your beliefs and stop trying to change ours? We don't need or want your "message" - so keep it to yourself like most other religions do. If we are interested in Christianity we will ask you about it.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328126)

what are you on crack? "like most other religions do" The Muslims are blowing themselves and children up over it. Jihad anyone? Take a look at the definition. Hindu's go around all the time telling people about what they believe. In fact very few religions don't do that. You must not have heard of Tom Cruise or Scientology.

The subtext of virtually all religions on the planet is recruitment. Don't let your bigotry turn you into an idiot.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (1)

110010001000 (697113) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328196)

They do? I have never had a Hindu or Muslim or Jew attempt to convert me. Neither has anyone else. Hindu's in particular believe that you are born Hindu. You cannot "become" Hindu. It is Christians which are converting Hindu's - not the other way around. Sorry.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (1)

bchapp (905116) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328057)

I am not trolling, but I really couldn't tell if you are being serious or sarcastic, especially about renaming the planets...

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (1)

Homology (639438) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328119)

I am not trolling, but I really couldn't tell if you are being serious or sarcastic, especially about renaming the planets...

Don't you know that the school board of Kansas has decided that this will be done next year?

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (5, Funny)

mrak and swepe (799450) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328079)

For example,"I think the planets should be renamed because they're named after fake gods."

Given that you Christians believe in one God (or is it three?), won't it get rather confusing if you name all the planets after him?

You won't be able to tell Uranus from Urelbow.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328081)

Your handle says it all.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (2, Insightful)

emjaycue (634752) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328104)

Right now, people should be doing plain ol evengalicizing like Jesus taught
Indeed. To bad so little of the evangalizing that goes on is done the way Jesus taught. But, then again, caring for the sick and poor without expecting anything in return and telling the wealthy and privileged to go jump through a needle is so blase. It's so much easier to go after the schoolteachers and complain about the use of the phrase "Happy Holidays" at the local Walmart.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (1)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328136)

'Bring as many to people to faith...' Hmm... this seems to imply that those who have faiths that are different than your own have no faith. It makes the fatal assumption that all other religions are somehow invalid or untrue. The thing is that of all the world's religions, only Christianity and Islam share the fundamental belief that 'for my faith to be right, everyone else's has to be wrong.' This is just plain wrong thinking and is not even close to what the actual teachings of Jesus were. (And before you dispute that, think about what it actually says in your Bible, as opposed to what your religious fanatic clergy have told you.) But what do I know about Chrisianity? I'm not even Christian, so you may as well ignore me.

Re:My fellow Christians: Strategize (5, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328177)

"I think the planets should be renamed because they're named after fake gods."

You are free to call the planets whatever you wish.
But clearly what you really want is the power (through government dictate) to force others to use names that are approved by your particular religion.

I hear a lot of Christians complain about how oppressed they are.
In the end the complaints turn out to be about wanting the power to control others.

Whew... and I thought that faith blinded people (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328194)

Yes, CrazyJim1, you're right. All you Christians have to do to defeat these darn scientists is to strategize. We wouldn't want things like "scientific process", "hypothesize, test, prove" and "repeatable experimentation" to thwart your movement. All you need is faith!!!

In fact I have total faith that God created the Internet just so you and your cult can use it to evangelize to us heathens! If only we would take God into our hearts, all the world's problems would be solved! Beginning with those no-good school districts who want our children to learn things like lightning and thunder are naturally created phenomenon and not God showing his displeasure at the world's corruption!

New Planet Names (1)

John Muir (912474) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328197)

God
God the Father
God the Son
The Holy Spirit

and um...

Steve?

How long... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328011)

Before religious wackos organize a boycott against Science Magazine (assuming they haven't already)?

"endogenous retrovirus" (-1, Troll)

Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328019)

note to anyone who wants to discuss evolution's correctness: if you don't know what this post's subject means, go home now before you waste everyone's time.

In a stunning announcement (0, Redundant)

mhollis (727905) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328026)

The State of Kansas, acting under orders of its school board, has now banned the journal "Science," stating that it does not fit the definition that will be used from now on in Kansas education of its title.

Educators are ordered to immediately remove the journal from all libraries, collections and classrooms.

Re:In a stunning announcement (0, Offtopic)

ndansmith (582590) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328087)

Which is a shame, because Science has been running so many high-quality articles [bbc.co.uk] lately.

Re:In a stunning announcement (0, Troll)

slashname3 (739398) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328098)

New flash! State of Kansas has banned the use of the term Science from all schools and teachers with degrees are being fired. "They just don't seem to want to teach the true faith. So they have to go."

In a possibly related story people from Kansas are so dumb they are unable to figure out how to turn the lights on in their own homes.

The Kansas Case (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328041)

SOT, but before this discussion gets any hotter, note that what the Board of Ed was requiring was that teachers would be forced to read a prepared statement about intelligent design. That's entirely different from following a cirriculum and choosing whether or not to read verbatim from a textbook.

I basically think that a lot of those claims for "separation of church and state" are not only outside the scope of what the US Constitution specifies, but on this one, I think the judge did the right thing - if for the wrong reasons. However, the discussion belongs in a theology or philosophy course, not a biology course.

Re:The Kansas Case (1)

relentless1914 (448284) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328148)

Well the constitution of the United States does not mention "Seperation of Church and State"....

There is the establishment clause that says that the government cannot endorse an official State religion, but the Church/State argument is not based on the constitution. Up until the Secular Humanist revelution, (the Enlightenment), the most used text book in the schools across the country was the Bible.

lol. political awards anyone? (-1, Redundant)

CDPatten (907182) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328051)

Oh come on... could this be anymore overtly political? The noble prizes have started to loose the prestige they once held and this journal is heading down the same road. I know many of you don't see this as a liberal vs conservative thing, but I truly believe it is. This is only being given as a way to cement evolution against ID.

Not to start this debate again, but nobody has explained to me where the big bang gases came from that created the universe. What gave the gases the properties to react to one another? Or the elements game from and their properties that evolved into the fist cell.

I agree Creation is debatable, but Intelligent Design seems to be logical to me. At some point in time an intelligent being had to be involved. Seriously, how can you deny that some intelligent being had a hand in the creation of the universe at some point in time? The elements that created everything had to come from somewhere.

Scott Adams is a genius (1)

Valacosa (863657) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328102)

"At some point in time an intelligent being had to be involved."
Seriously, when I read that, I honestly saw "At some point in time an intelligent being had to be evolved." Funny blunder on my part.

Anyway, I gave someone mod points earlier today for posting this short essay by Scott Adams [typepad.com] . I recommend you read it.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (1)

grub (11606) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328110)


I agree Creation is debatable, but Intelligent Design seems to be logical to me.

The two are the same and have an untennable position. Without a shred of proof going for ID nee Creationism there's nothing to debate.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (1)

CDPatten (907182) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328147)

actually they aren't. One said we were created in 6 days by the Christian god. The other says that at some point in the time line an intelligent being had to be involved. Whether it was during a six day period or simply craeteing the gasses that started it all.

Why don't you do a little research before touting your FUD.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (1)

PoitNarf (160194) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328114)

...but nobody has explained to me where the big bang gases came from that created the universe.

Why does everything need to have a beginning and an end? Why can't this matter or energy have always existed and always will exist? I don't find that so hard to swallow.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328209)

That is quite a philosophical argument, but absurd none the less. Everything in this universe has a beginning and end. That certainly is not debating in the science community with any more then the existence of santa clause (yes st. nic did have a beginning and end).

So that perspective really should stay on the scifi channel where it belongs.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (5, Insightful)

LurkerXXX (667952) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328145)

At some point in time an intelligent being had to be involved.
The elements that created everything had to come from somewhere.

Where did the Intelligent being come from? The elements that comprise the being had to come from somewhere.

Whatever you reply to this "he always existed" or whatever, is the same reply I'll give you to you about where the elements came from. It's just as logical as yours.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (1)

Admiral Frosty (919523) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328216)

There are more things in heaven and earth,
Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

Re:lol. political awards anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328160)

I know many of you don't see this as a liberal vs conservative thing, but I truly believe it is.

Dumbass... the federal court decision was made by a Republican Judge.

I agree Creation is debatable, but Intelligent Design seems to be logical to me.

It's the same thing.

Seriously, how can you deny that some intelligent being had a hand in the creation of the universe at some point in time?

Who made the intelligent being? And if no one made him/her/it which is much more complicated than the universe, then why did someone have to make the universe?

You have no logic.

Tacky, tacky (4, Insightful)

Otter (3800) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328060)

Shoehorning a bunch of legitimately interesting work into "Evolution!" is just heavy-handed politicking, that cheapens both science and Science. What they don't seem to get is that the ID people have no long-term investment in science and don't care if they bring the whole thing down; scientists need to be careful about drawing the line between research and politics.

And, hello -- how about the HapMap?

Re:Tacky, tacky (2, Insightful)

DogDude (805747) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328202)

I couldn't agree more. To even mention "Intelligent Design" or other such nonsense in a scientific discussion gives it credence that it doesn't deserve. "Intelligent Design" should be given the same amount of attention as the theory that the guy standing on the corner of my street has about aliens, slippers, and papayas: none.

Runner Up Scientific Achievement of 2005 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328061)

Studies indicating possibility of a heliocentric solar system.

Song and dance (1)

Valacosa (863657) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328064)

"The number one spot was awarded jointly to several studies that illuminated the intricate workings of evolution. The announcement comes in the same week that a US court banned the teaching of intelligent design in classrooms.'"

[To music]: Weeee're gonna make it after aaaalllllll!!!

Scientific Achievement? (1)

AxemRed (755470) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328075)

More like the most politically-involved scientific achievement of the year. Maybe that's what the were aiming for, but it seems like they're trying to pass it off as if we just figured it out this year.

usual Slashdot accuracy (2, Informative)

snarkh (118018) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328082)


The announcement comes in the same week that a US court banned the teaching of intelligent design in classrooms.


The court did not ban the teaching of the ID, it ruled that the teachers
cannot be forced to do that.

Evolution within Intelligently Designed systems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328086)

Unfortunately, recent U.S. court decisions have barred public schools from exploring evolution within such Intelligently Designed organisms as Dolly the sheep.

Still, it would be interesting to study differences in evolution.

I know this is 146 years late, Mr. Darwin (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328090)

FYI Charles Darwing wrote On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection in 1859.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Darwin [wikipedia.org]

Evolution? Scientific Achievement of 2005? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328095)

Who are they kidding anyway? Evolution hasn't been scientifically proven. How can it be named a scientific achievement?

Slashdot Under Siege.... (2, Insightful)

ObsessiveMathsFreak (773371) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328108)

....but creationists? For some reason each and every single time a story about evolution, intelligent design or even the origins of life appears, it amasses enourmous amounts of comments in a short period of time. I predict the same for this story, with regret.

I'm wondering what the hell is going on? Is it just a political hot potato and ./'ers are simply venting here? This might be, but I've seen a lot of comments from Slashdoters in support for ID one way or the other. It's scary because the Slashdot readership to me is apparently amoung the most educated on the net. We are mostly geeks after all.

It would be scary to think that all the geeks around me actually believe in religion. When I was younger I just assummed that most people were completely secular like me, and didn't believe in religion at all; delegating it to the status of fictional works like comic books etc. It came as something of a shock to my world view that most people are not in fact secular but do hold religious beliefs. I haven't quite recovered from it.

Or maybe it's just trolling by the GNAA et al, with Slashdotters flaming back. I'd like to believe this.

Re:Slashdot Under Siege.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328167)

> It would be scary to think that all the geeks around me actually believe in religion.

      I have noticed that, among software engineers, the percentage of individuals who hold extravagant beliefs (UFOs, intelligent design, ghosts, psychic powers) seems to be alarmingly high. I still that fellow, who would introduce himself as a computer scientist, who claimed that "The Blair Witch" movie depicted events as they actually happened....

Re:Slashdot Under Siege.... (2, Insightful)

110010001000 (697113) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328168)

Most celebrated scientists and great thinkers (Einstein, DiVinci, Archimedes, etc) believed in God. In Einstein's case, his parent were non-religious - yet he was very religious himself. There is no corollation between intelligence and religous belief.

Re:Slashdot Under Siege.... (0, Troll)

Marxist Hacker 42 (638312) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328174)

Like with most things, some slashdotters like me are being *extra* nerdy and insisting that mere theological theories don't get touted as fact. Evolution, having replaced "God did it" with "Random Chance did it" is particularily bad at this; as is the claim that ID is not science because of some incredibly arbitrary and subjective rules about who is a scientist and what a science is. Thus the argument every time it shows up.

BTW, it has nothing at all to do with creationism- the type of ID we're talking about takes a given the scientific age of the earth at about 4 billion years and the latest age of the universe at 19.3 billion years. Creationists peg the entire shebang at much less than that- around 6000 years or so. What the argument is really about to me is arrogance, certainty, and the nature of the word "fact".

More to the article than just evolution. (1)

olddotter (638430) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328128)

Some interesting ideas made the list:
  • Winner: Evolution in action.
  • Runner up: Planetary blitz.
  • In bloom.
  • Neutron stars.
  • Miswiring the brain.
  • Complicated Earth.
  • Protein portrait.
  • Change of climate.
  • Systems biology.
  • Bienvenue Iter.

I personally would have put the Climate change data higher on the list. But some good biology/medical work was recognized as well.

Re:More to the article than just evolution. (1)

digitaldc (879047) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328223)

In bloom.

You mean Nirvana made the list? I always said they were way ahead of their time.

How long till Christmas is banned? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328131)

Congratulations! you are now no longer allowed to celebrate Christmas. Merry Evolution! You are not loved and have no purpose.

Poor fundies! (0, Troll)

cffrost (885375) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328143)


They're having a rough week. Now would be a hilarious time to try to force science into the churchroom. Any fundies up for some preachings from "Darwin's Gospel"?

Kick 'em while they're down, I say. Can I get an "Amen!"

It's Almost Funny (0, Troll)

The Lost Supertone (754279) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328149)

Why is it academics and scientists so often decide that they are simply better than everyone else? Simply because by their own standards they achieve better than others? How would they feel if groups of people who say excelled at spiritual aspects of life, which apparently are beyond the reach of so many of these people, and simply stated that the realization of intelligent design was the top epiphany of 2005? It'd be laughed as a self promoting statement. Of course though I imagine they'd be quite offended if we pointed out this was the same thing. Humans are arrogant.

its a good app (0, Redundant)

chicagotypewriter (933271) | more than 7 years ago | (#14328184)

evolution is a good email application, but i think it needs quite a bit of work to really be called scientific achievement of 2005. i mean, come on.

to paraphrase ignignot... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#14328189)

"I hope they can see this 'cause I'm doing it as hard as I can. [img235.exs.cx] "
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