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Step aside Darwinism, say hello to "Dissipation-driven adaptive organization"

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posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:32 PM
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Groundbreaking ideas of life's origin's.


If a new theory is correct, the same physics it identifies as responsible for the origin of living things could explain the formation of many other patterned structures in nature. Snowflakes, sand dunes and self-replicating vortices in the protoplanetary disk may all be examples of dissipation-driven adaptation.



“I am certainly not saying that Darwinian ideas are wrong,” he explained. “On the contrary, I am just saying that from the perspective of the physics, you might call Darwinian evolution a special case of a more general phenomenon.”





Besides self-replication, greater structural organization is another means by which strongly driven systems ramp up their ability to dissipate energy. A plant, for example, is much better at capturing and routing solar energy through itself than an unstructured heap of carbon atoms. Thus, England argues that under certain conditions, matter will spontaneously self-organize. This tendency could account for the internal order of living things and of many inanimate structures as well. “Snowflakes, sand dunes and turbulent vortices all have in common that they are strikingly patterned structures that emerge in many-particle systems driven by some dissipative process,” he said. Condensation, wind and viscous drag are the relevant processes in these particular cases.

“He is making me think that the distinction between living and nonliving matter is not sharp,” said Carl Franck, a biological physicist at Cornell University, in an email. “I’m particularly impressed by this notion when one considers systems as small as chemical circuits involving a few biomolecules.”


Having an overarching principle of life and evolution would give researchers a broader perspective on the emergence of structure and function in living things, many of the researchers said. “Natural selection doesn’t explain certain characteristics,” said Ard Louis, a biophysicist at Oxford University, in an email. These characteristics include a heritable change to gene expression called methylation, increases in complexity in the absence of natural selection, and certain molecular changes Louis has recently studied.

If England’s approach stands up to more testing, it could further liberate biologists from seeking a Darwinian explanation for every adaptation and allow them to think more generally in terms of dissipation-driven organization. They might find, for example, that “the reason that an organism shows characteristic X rather than Y may not be because X is more fit than Y, but because physical constraints make it easier for X to evolve than for Y to evolve,” Louis said.


As a theory of everything enthusiast this one impressed me more than any other to date.

What do you guys think?




posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:42 PM
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a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

This is very interesting and actually makes quite a bit of sense. By the way, this isn't replacing the theory of evolution like your title suggests. From the article:

England’s theory is meant to underlie, rather than replace, Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection, which provides a powerful description of life at the level of genes and populations. “I am certainly not saying that Darwinian ideas are wrong,” he explained. “On the contrary, I am just saying that from the perspective of the physics, you might call Darwinian evolution a special case of a more general phenomenon.”


S&F in any case I am truly intrigued. I like how they applied the second law of thermodynamics to explain how life is a good form to increase entropy in a system.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:48 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

I disagree actually, if proven correct (which I suspect it will be), it will replace "Natural Selection" as the primary theory of evolution. So, it is very much a case of step aside Darwinism ... (Hmm, or should that be Natural Selection?)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:50 PM
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a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

Don't you mean.

Step aside Abiogenesis or Panspermia?

Those are the hypothesis dealing with the origins of life.

There are some things about the write up that just do not seem right. Such as not making the distinction between the origins of life and evolution then going on to the second law of thermodynamics.

Well either way it seems interesting. I will have to read ore on him and his hypothesis.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:50 PM
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a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

No, natural selection can still exist under this hypothesis. Like the excerpt that I posted said, this new hypothesis just underlies evolutionary synthesis, not contradict or overwrite it. There are no conflicts with this hypothesis and modern evolutionary synthesis.
edit on 10-12-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:53 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi

That may have something to do with the article appearing in a business magazine and not so much a scientific magazine. I can kind of forgive them for their inaccuracies since I get the message that they are trying to get across.

From what I've read, this new hypothesis neatly links and explains life, abiogenesis/panspermia, and evolution by arguing that life is a tool of the second law of thermodynamics to increase entropy in an open system.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:54 PM
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Sounds like a reinvention of fractals, a term described by Benoit Mandelbrot. Some simple rules at the atomic scale combined with additive growth eventually manifest at the macroscopic scale.

Snowflakes grow by the adhesion of low-energy water molecules onto condensation nucleii (dust, ash). Then other water molecules get stuck to those. Because of the angles that the hydrogen atoms make with the oxygen atom, that forms 60 or 120 degree angles, thus generating various shapes like needles, hexagon discs and snowflakes.

Sand ripples form through changes in air pressure and wind speed. Air pressure gets higher along the gentle lee slope of the sand dune, then suddenly drops after crossing the ridge. This leads to deposition of sand grains beyond the ridge, and they pile up. This leads to the forward motion of the ripple. Growth starts off at the smallest scale of a sand grain, with the random distribution of sand grains gradually being amplified until ridges several meters high are formed.

With an accretion disc of proto-planets, you'll have an original random distribution of ice particles, these will gradually condense into larger objects, occasionally collide and fragment again, but the general trend will be towards larger objects. Eventually, all that will be left will be a few large stable objects.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:54 PM
link   
Sounds like a reinvention of fractals, a term described by Benoit Mandelbrot. Some simple rules at the atomic scale combined with additive growth eventually manifest at the macroscopic scale.

Snowflakes grow by the adhesion of low-energy water molecules onto condensation nucleii (dust, ash). Then other water molecules get stuck to those. Because of the angles that the hydrogen atoms make with the oxygen atom, that forms 60 or 120 degree angles, thus generating various shapes like needles, hexagon discs and snowflakes.

Sand ripples form through changes in air pressure and wind speed. Air pressure gets higher along the gentle lee slope of the sand dune, then suddenly drops after crossing the ridge. This leads to deposition of sand grains beyond the ridge, and they pile up. This leads to the forward motion of the ripple. Growth starts off at the smallest scale of a sand grain, with the random distribution of sand grains gradually being amplified until ridges several meters high are formed.

With an accretion disc of proto-planets, you'll have an original random distribution of ice particles, these will gradually condense into larger objects, occasionally collide and fragment again, but the general trend will be towards larger objects. Eventually, all that will be left will be a few large stable objects.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 01:56 PM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

No, natural selection can still exist under this hypothesis. Like the excerpt that I posted said, this new hypothesis just underlies evolutionary synthesis, not contradict or overwrite it. There are no conflicts with this hypothesis and modern evolutionary synthesis.


Well,that's where you are wrong.

Having an overarching principle of life and evolution would give researchers a broader perspective on the emergence of structure and function in living things, many of the researchers said. “Natural selection doesn’t explain certain characteristics,” said Ard Louis, a biophysicist at Oxford University, in an email. These characteristics include a heritable change to gene expression called methylation, increases in complexity in the absence of natural selection, and certain molecular changes Louis has recently studied. 

If England’s approach stands up to more testing, it could further liberate biologists from seeking a Darwinian explanation for every adaptation and allow them to think more generally in terms of dissipation-driven organization. 



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:04 PM
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originally posted by: funkadeliaaaa
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I disagree actually, if proven correct (which I suspect it will be), it will replace "Natural Selection" as the primary theory of evolution. So, it is very much a case of step aside Darwinism ... (Hmm, or should that be Natural Selection?)


I think it may totally rewrite the rules, so to speak, for explanations and overall attitudes from biological gene expression, to fundamental states of matter, which is rather mind blowing

Great thread, btw, OP.

This has to do, I suspect, further, with the Hameroff and Penrose observation of the "quantum walk" plants make internally when photosynthesizing.

All very interesting.
What intrigues me the most, though, is that we are constantly redefining, and the standard model may be challenged more than it has been in a very long time.
tetra
ETA: "Frequency is and will be in the end, everything."
edit on 10-12-2014 by tetra50 because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:05 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Good to know. I will have to find an article on this that isn't written by a business magazine. The wording contradictions are hard to get past. I get the gist of it and like I said seems interesting. If it holds water it will explain quite a few things I imagine.

I found this from his site. I think it outlines things a little better.



Natural selection of forms as a physical process

When we talk about evolution, we tend to take two things for granted: first, that our subject of study will be some sort of self-replicating phenomenon capable of reproducing itself with imperfect fidelity, and second, that the frequency of this replicator's successful self-replication and the likelihood of its survival will be somehow modulated by the way it interacts with its environment.

The tricky thing here is the question of which precise properties of the environment affect the replicator's proliferation, and how precisely they do so. When talking about real organisms, in all their complexity, it is inevitably necessary to make some kind of approximation in the course of developing a model.

This raises the question of how matters might differ if we instead considered a system in which it were possible to treat replicator and environment each on equal footing, as parts of the same physical system. In other words, what can we learn if we consider the physical dynamics of a mixture of atoms exhibiting a "toy chemistry" that allows them to combine into varied forms, possessing well-defined energies of interaction with each other?

Our goal is to develop analytical and computational models of how self-replicating forms emerge and compete for sources of chemical free energy under conducive physical conditions. Such an approach opens the door to an understanding of the onset of evolutionary dynamics expressed in the terms of physics.
www.englandlab.com...
edit on 10-12-2014 by Grimpachi because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:08 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi


Don't you mean.

Step aside Abiogenesis or Panspermia?

Those are the hypothesis dealing with the origins of life.


No, this isn't simply a theory about life's origins, it also explains the continuum of life.


edit on 10 12 14 by funkadeliaaaa because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:18 PM
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a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

That's not a conflict, that is just a hole in the explanation that is provided by natural selection which is cleared up with this hypothesis. The point you bolded isn't saying that Natural Selection is wrong, just that it doesn't explain everything. At the end of the day, if this hypothesis holds, all that will happen is the theory will be modified a bit and go on pretty much saying the same thing.
edit on 10-12-2014 by Krazysh0t because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:21 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi

England's paper is in the article:
Statistical physics of self-replication



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:31 PM
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a reply to: Grimpachi

The article is well written, and includes valuable commentrary from multiple Professors from Universities like Harvard and Oxford.

The average reader imo will find the article much easier to understand than the text you just quoted. As journalism goes I don't think this is too bad, and I don't think the source being a business magazine matters at all in this case.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:37 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Correct. It will no be the end of Natural Selection as a theory, as you rightly stated it simply fill in some of the holes in the theory of natural selection. However it will result in the diminished role of natural selection, and I predict eventually that it will be discarded as a theoretical perspective altogether as a basis of scientific study into evolutionary genetics.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:41 PM
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a reply to: funkadeliaaaa

It's possible. I am by no means trying to argue that the theory of evolution is complete and 100% correct. I just wanted to point out that the hypothesis in the OP isn't overwriting the theory of natural selection, but just helping fill in some of the gaps in the theory.



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:42 PM
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originally posted by: funkadeliaaaa
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I disagree actually, if proven correct (which I suspect it will be), it will replace "Natural Selection" as the primary theory of evolution. So, it is very much a case of step aside Darwinism ... (Hmm, or should that be Natural Selection?)


There's no such thing as Darwinism. We aren't living in the 1800s. This wouldn't prove evolution wrong, it would be part of the mechanism if true and explain some things that we don't fully understand yet. How about we wait and see if this gets proven, then worry about the implications.
edit on 10-12-2014 by Barcs because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:43 PM
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a reply to: Krazysh0t

Actually i think it will be the end of Natural Selection.

Think for a minute about the implications of this new theory, please. In light of dissipation-driven adaptive organisation, can't you see how bloated natural selection is? Its even a little bit anthropomorphic, IMO.
edit on 10 12 14 by funkadeliaaaa because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 10 2014 @ 02:51 PM
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originally posted by: Barcs

originally posted by: funkadeliaaaa
a reply to: Krazysh0t

I disagree actually, if proven correct (which I suspect it will be), it will replace "Natural Selection" as the primary theory of evolution. So, it is very much a case of step aside Darwinism ... (Hmm, or should that be Natural Selection?)


There's no such thing as Darwinism. We aren't living in the 1800s. This wouldn't prove evolution wrong, it would be part of the mechanism if true and honestly it sounds more about the origin of life, than evolution.


Correct. This is 2014, however you will be surprised to know darwinists do still exist, and thereofore so does Darwinism.

The theory does not try to disprove anything, and no this isn't just a theory concerned with the origins of life, its a theory concerned with the continuum of all phenomena including life, not just its origins. You clearly didn't understand it very well.



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