Category: Evolution

Adapt or Die => Die Sooner to Adapt Faster

In the long run, the ability of a species to evolve is more important than anything else in determining its competitive success. This is true almost by definition: given enough time, the ability to adapt and improve will overtake any initial disadvantage.

Origin of Life: Follow-up on your comments

I always appreciate the opportunity to learn from your comments, the more so when I have ventured outside my expertise. I was particularly excited to receive extended comments from Gary Hurd with references that were new to me and a pointer to one of my favorite biological free-thinkers, Carl Woese. This is a brief response to Gary, with some expanded thoughts and clarifications.

Late Night Musings on the Origin of Life

The conventional view of the origin of life is that some combination of simple-enough chemicals was able to catalyze the synthesis of the same chemicals, and that was enough to begin a process of evolution that became more efficient as it became more intricate. One problem with this idea is that no such self-reproducing combination of chemicals is known, or has ever been synthesized or engineered. The simplest known self-replicating systems are enormously complex compared to anything that might plausibly have arisen by chance. Improbable as is the conventional view, the alternatives are far stranger.