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17 November 2007 @ 12:37 am
...even in prehistoric times.
Mid-Cambrian Morning, a very biogeeky comic by Rosemary Mosco

Makes you think, don't it? So many people think humans are the pinnacle of evolution...well, let's see what happens in a million years or so.

Thought you guys would enjoy this. :) Make sure to click the explanation and field guide to learn about these bizarre critters, including the earliest chordate- a group containing humans. :)

This community doesn't deserve to be as dead as it is, but if it doesn't really fit post criteria, feel free to delete.
Current Mood: amusedamused
26 October 2007 @ 02:30 am

 Hello there:

                        I have a question about genetics. I want to know if it would be possible for two very close species (eg. tigers and lions) to be unable to reproduce together but to be perfectly able to reproduce within their own species. I do not mean a case where the offspring is sterile, like the mule (or very often ligers and tigons), but a case where two set of genes, very similar, are somehow unable to fit together in a consistent basis. This is all speculative and my knowledge of genetics is basically non-existent but theoretically speaking I thought of two species (I'm thinking of mammals, mostly) that originated on the same could diverge enough genetically speaking (without becoming two far apart in appearance and abilities) for this to happen.

 Thanks in advance! 
12 February 2007 @ 06:00 am
Happy Darwin Day!
20 January 2007 @ 03:38 pm
This semester I'm taking Basis of Evolution, this being my 3rd evolution centric class. It's taught by the same guy who taught my Age of Dinosaurs class, who rules.

So I thought I might pass on some of my reading material :D

Article on Homeobox genes and evolutionary gaps (and possible lack thereof).

Process of Evolution - the process of evolution with comparisons with creationism and ID near the end, along with viewpoints from the church. Moral of the story: science and theology are seperate, and it works both ways. Saying "God did it, that's all you need to know" is not science, and neither is "science can explain it, so therefore there is no god". Or at least, that's the moral, as far as my professor (and myself) thinks ;D. I suppose that's what this community is open and here for-- discussion.

And ehh I have some more good stuff like on sexual selection in humans if anyone wants that too x). If anyone has something they would like to read up on, I'll see if I can find it-- we have a bunch of online resources.
24 October 2006 @ 11:36 pm
I'm new in here, and I love the idea of this community.
The theory of Evolution interests me alot, same goes for everyone else in here...
This was kind of pointless, but uh... *waves*
18 October 2006 @ 06:56 pm
It may interest people to know that I have just written a program which models the evolution mechanism over many generations of asexual reproduction.

It's a very simple program, using a list of organisms to represent a species, and lists of numbers to represent organisms (where each number is a gene).

With each generation, each organism is checked against a fit value (by comparing the sum of the gene numbers to this value) to determine its odds of reproducing. This models natural selection.

Each organism is also given the opportunity to mutate (each gene has a 4% chance of mutation, to minimize the number of generations necessary) during each generation.

So, considering that each organism's sum can range from 0 to 63 (each organism has 7 genes, each of which can be any number 0-9), without evolution taking place, the average fitness sum of organisms in a species should tend towards 31.5, following the second law of thermodynamics. However, because natural selection takes place, the average fitness sums of a species after 25 generations usually end up being within +/- 3 of whatever fit value I set.

This is concrete mathematical evidence that the mechanisms of evolution and natural selection work, and are highly likely to occur in asexually reproducing organisms.

So, anytime you come across anti-evolutionists doubting that random processes can lead to complex, functional configurations, this program can be used against them.

Next, I'm going to develop a function which models meiosis so I can include a sexually reproducing model which can be compared to this asexually reproducing model.
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
10 October 2006 @ 04:39 am
There's not been much activity in this community lately, so I decided to try to liven things up a bit by offering up a simple discussion topic.

What questions do you have about evolution? What things might you be skeptical about or want to know more about? What might have caused you to have this skepticism? (Not required in your comment, just curious for those that want to include that).

Feel free to ask your questions in comments and if anyone else knows the answer, feel free to reply.

And as always, I encourage people to post whatever evolution/origin discussion-related questions or comments or personal reflections (about discoveries, debates, etc.) they might have. If you're interested in this community remember that the only way to keep it alive is if members post in it!
Current Mood: curiouscurious
21 September 2006 @ 12:51 pm
I thought this article might be of interest to the members of this community:

Skeleton sheds light on ape-man species

By MALCOLM RITTER, AP Science Writer Wed Sep 20, 10:26 PM ET

NEW YORK - In a discovery sure to fuel an old debate about our evolutionary history, scientists have found a remarkably complete skeleton of a 3-year-old female from the ape-man species represented by "Lucy."
Click for the rest of the articleCollapse )
09 September 2006 @ 02:28 pm

I know almost nothing about evolution but I think it's important that we learn about it since it's really the only reason we're still around on Earth and we're top of the food chain.

My question: How does evolution work? Does one organism's genes evolve a tiny bit, and then that 'work' is passed onto it's offspring who carries on the work a little? If that makes sense.

Enlighten me ^^;;
Current Location: DY4, England
Current Mood: okayokay
03 September 2006 @ 05:33 pm
We've got a nice little group of members here (by the way, if you know of people or communities that might be interested in this community, feel free to link them to it!) so I figure it was time to start some conversation. I'd like to encourage people to start posting here. The posting guidelines are pretty loose at the moment since I'm still trying to find a good direction for this community, so you can post anything from a question directed at the members to an interesting article you read.

For now, I'm going to post this little "getting to know you" thread. It's optional of course, but if you'd like, reply here saying why you joined this community, telling us a little about yourself, what your own views are on evolution, and what your background knowledge is (i.e. don't know much about evolution, took an evolution course in school, etc). And don't worry if you think you might be the odd one out in terms of your own beliefs or background knowledge. The very fact that you're here suggests you'd like to learn more about evolution and that's the purpose of this community.

I'll start off.

I'm a 20 year old illustration major, currently in my 3rd year of college, working to get my BFA. I'm a skeptic and very opinionated. As such, I tend to side with things for which I feel there is a great amount of scientific evidence. I believe evolutionary theory is one of those things. Evolution was discussed briefly in my high school biology class but it wasn't until I took a college course on it that I felt I really understood it. It was also this college course that spiked my interest in the subject. Since then I have been working to expand my knowledge through research on my own time (reading books, articles, websites, watching programs, etc). My main area of interest in evolution is biology, and consequently that's what I have the most knowledge about, with the paleontology aspects coming second. I know very little about parts of evolutionary theory dealing with math and physics. Those were never my best subjects in school.

My religious beliefs fall under atheism/borderline agnosticism in that I do not believe in a deity but also believe it is impossible to prove or disprove the existence of one. I also have a great interest in Eastern philosophies, namely Buddhism. Despite my atheism, I try to make an effort to increase my understanding of many religions. I'm of the opinion that if I'm not going to believe or agree with something, I should at least know what that something is all about. Of the major world religions, I'm most familiar with Christianity and have read a substantial portion of the Bible (yes, I do own a copy).

Now it's your turn! If there's anything you don't feel comfortable talking about, no worries. Just say what you do feel comfortable saying.
Current Mood: cheerfulcheerful