THE EMERGING NEW WORLDVIEW

themadhair

Patron Meritorious
Current theory holds the age of the earth to be about 4.5 billion years.
This figure was derived independently of biology. Essentially you have a maximum age given by the sun, and this uses main-sequence fitting to put a limit on this of around 5 billion years. You also have a minimum regarding the oldest rocks, namely that if you have a rock of over 4 billion years then that is a minimum figure for the age of the earth. By refining these maximum and minimum ages the 4.57 billion years is arrived at. There is absolutely no biology involved in this whatsoever. It may be worth pointing out that, prior to the discovery of nuclear fusion, Lord Kelvin’s calculations involving the sun were taken to be the potential maximum – and the contradiction between this age and that required by both evolutionary theory and geology was apparent.
Simple math given those figures would predict a new species on average every 350 years.
Your math ignore extremely short-generation organisms such as bacteria. When trying to do a rough calculation like this it would be better to restrict yourself to a class like mammals or some such.
It follows that all living species today "evolved" from the survivors of that disaster.
To take an example, all mammals can be traced from the remnants of this extinction event.
That means 1,000,000 species survived.
Over the next 65,000,000 years, that one million evolved into the modern 10 million. That's one new species an average of every 7 years or so over that 65,000,000 years.
Conceptual fail. The flaw here is to assume that ‘evolution rates’ (whatever that is supposed to mean) is somehow relatively constant. The wiki page is a decent place to start on mammals:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_mammals
This article does a good job explaining the current gaps in knowledge so it would be a good place for you to start.
I would speculate that evolution is governed by a kind of "chaos theory", by chaos mathematics.
Gould already covered this.
…rather than any neat orderly linear process.
If you reading of evolutionary theory gives you this impression then you are probably reading crap sources. Had to be said. The ‘linearity’ is one of the most profound and common misconceptions of evolution that does the rounds.
Furthermore, rather than relying on random mutation for the emergence of new species (along with selection); could it be that life itself "selects" what it will change into?
No. See the work of Kerins who did a good job on this. I’d dig out a reference but I have to leave in about ten minutes. The plethora of ‘design mistakes’ show the lack of a goal in evolutionary processes.
Enough individuals morph at about the same time to ensure a viable breeding population of the new form?
Wot??? You do realise that change is gradual with various genes and novel features being exchanged throughout the population? And that only when you get separation (whether geographical, or in sexual routine, etc.) do you actually get speciation? Every single human being is different. If you took a group of humans and kept them in isolation for long enough they would eventually lose the ability to interbreed with the rest of the human population. It is simply a question of whether two creatures have a sufficient number of genetic or behavioural differences that prevent interbreeding. Dogs were isolated from wolves and now wolves and dogs cannot interbreed.
 

NonScio

Patron Meritorious
This figure was derived independently of biology. Essentially you have a maximum age given by the sun, and this uses main-sequence fitting to put a limit on this of around 5 billion years. You also have a minimum regarding the oldest rocks, namely that if you have a rock of over 4 billion years then that is a minimum figure for the age of the earth. By refining these maximum and minimum ages the 4.57 billion years is arrived at. There is absolutely no biology involved in this whatsoever. It may be worth pointing out that, prior to the discovery of nuclear fusion, Lord Kelvin’s calculations involving the sun were taken to be the potential maximum – and the contradiction between this age and that required by both evolutionary theory and geology was apparent.

Your math ignore extremely short-generation organisms such as bacteria. When trying to do a rough calculation like this it would be better to restrict yourself to a class like mammals or some such.

To take an example, all mammals can be traced from the remnants of this extinction event.

Conceptual fail. The flaw here is to assume that ‘evolution rates’ (whatever that is supposed to mean) is somehow relatively constant. The wiki page is a decent place to start on mammals:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolution_of_mammals
This article does a good job explaining the current gaps in knowledge so it would be a good place for you to start.

Gould already covered this.

If you reading of evolutionary theory gives you this impression then you are probably reading crap sources. Had to be said. The ‘linearity’ is one of the most profound and common misconceptions of evolution that does the rounds.

No. See the work of Kerins who did a good job on this. I’d dig out a reference but I have to leave in about ten minutes. The plethora of ‘design mistakes’ show the lack of a goal in evolutionary processes.

Wot??? You do realise that change is gradual with various genes and novel features being exchanged throughout the population? And that only when you get separation (whether geographical, or in sexual routine, etc.) do you actually get speciation? Every single human being is different. If you took a group of humans and kept them in isolation for long enough they would eventually lose the ability to interbreed with the rest of the human population. It is simply a question of whether two creatures have a sufficient number of genetic or behavioural differences that prevent interbreeding. Dogs were isolated from wolves and now wolves and dogs cannot interbreed.

As I said, my post was just my own idle speculation!
Speciation remains a mystery to me. I recall some
lines from "Inherit the Wind", the dramatizatin of the 1925
Scopes Monkey Trial. The William Jennings Bryant character
quotes Genesis as saying the "Sons of Adam took wives...."
Clarence Darrow character replies "And where did she come from?"
"Who" asks Bryant. "The wife", asks Darrow..."Do you suppose God
pulled another creation over in the next county"?

That's the crux of the problem...in species which utilize bisexual
reproduction, at least two individuals of the new species
must appear, survive to reproductive age, find each other
and mate pretty much simultaneously. Further, these
two individuals must be at least one male and at least one female
(preferably more than one female). This general scenario
seems to be necessary regardless of what's happening on the
genetic level. The only solution I can think of is that
the "new" species would somehow have to continue to
breed back into the parent species..until enough "new" individuals
appeared to establish the new species breeding population.
Then of course, this would completely negate one of the
most basic characteristics of a "species", i.e. it can only breed
with its own.

These are my own musings. Probably there are scientific
answers to my questions. I haven't read very much on
the theories. Probably should.
 

themadhair

Patron Meritorious
That's the crux of the problem...in species which utilize bisexual reproduction, at least two individuals of the new species must appear, survive to reproductive age, find each other and mate pretty much simultaneously.
Protip:
1) Go to www.google.com
2) Type in “evolution of sexual reproduction”
3) Click the ‘search’ button.
4) Start reading the links.
5)?????
6) Learn why it has never been a problem.
The only solution I can think of is that the "new" species would somehow have to continue to breed back into the parent species..until enough "new" individuals appeared to establish the new species breeding population.
When I read stuff like this it makes me cringe. I do not mean to be offensive, but this isn’t exactly post-high school material. In Ireland you will do this stuff if you take secondary school biology classes. Moreover, especially with the advent of the internet and increased transportation technologies that make libraries more accessible, what is stopping you from learning about this topic?
Then of course, this would completely negate one of the most basic characteristics of a "species", i.e. it can only breed with its own.
Google ‘ring species’. That will make your head spin, and help illustrate just how fuzzy the species divide really is sometimes.
Probably there are scientific answers to my questions. I haven't read very much on the theories. Probably should.
Why don’t you read up on these? Wikipedia has all you would need to understand the musing you have posed, and in particular why those musings are really off the mark.
 

moarxenu

Patron with Honors
tl;dr

I only got this far:

The international political establishment will fail to achieve a world without poverty and war because their science depends on their waging war.

And Scientology doesn't?

* War on ars
* War on copyright criminals
* War on Critics
* War on Time magazine
* War on the IRS
* War on the US government
* War on Independent Scientologists
* War on apostates
* War on Anonymous
 

uniquemand

Unbeliever
Wait, which international political establishment is this? *dons tinfoil hat*

War drives some types of technology. Peacetime needs drive others. The space program might have been inspired by a need to keep pace with the Russkies, but it was a peacetime program, and has resulted in the sorts of technologies we take for granted as part of modern life. The internet was the brainchild of the military, and yet, you seem perfectly content to use it to gain information or spread the paradigm of paranoid fear.

I recommend talking to actual working scientists and mathematicians. I think the best possible thing for us to do, as a civilization, is to invest in fundamental scientific research. It has no intended application, but you can be sure thousands of new applications will spawn from it, some extremely beneficial, some on the order of velcro, and some will have negative effects.

We live, we learn. Can we drop the paranoia?

ali2.jpg
 
Wait, which international political establishment is this? *dons tinfoil hat*

War drives some types of technology. Peacetime needs drive others. The space program might have been inspired by a need to keep pace with the Russkies, but it was a peacetime program, and has resulted in the sorts of technologies we take for granted as part of modern life. The internet was the brainchild of the military, and yet, you seem perfectly content to use it to gain information or spread the paradigm of paranoid fear.

I recommend talking to actual working scientists and mathematicians. I think the best possible thing for us to do, as a civilization, is to invest in fundamental scientific research. It has no intended application, but you can be sure thousands of new applications will spawn from it, some extremely beneficial, some on the order of velcro, and some will have negative effects.

We live, we learn. Can we drop the paranoia?

ali2.jpg

Amen. It is the quest itself for knowledge that marks progress, not specific pragmatic applications.

The Anabaptist Jacques
 
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