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DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

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DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby CriticalEye » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:20 pm

At the Discovery Institute's website Center of Science and Culture, they pose the question, "Is intelligent design a scientific theory?" They answer the question as thus;

"Yes. The scientific method is commonly described as a four-step process involving observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion. Intelligent design begins with the observation that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information (CSI). Design theorists hypothesize that if a natural object was designed, it will contain high levels of CSI. Scientists then perform experimental tests upon natural objects to determine if they contain complex and specified information. One easily testable form of CSI is irreducible complexity, which can be discovered by experimentally reverse-engineering biological structures to see if they require all of their parts to function. When ID researchers find irreducible complexity in biology, they conclude that such structures were designed."

Does anyone else think this isn't exactly a scientific theory? If a irreducible complexity test turns out to be incorrect, doesn't this mean the theory is dead in the water? Either way, I don't understand how irreducible complexity suggests intelligent design.

I would ask them directly but, there isn't anywhere on their site to do so and their email link doesn't seem to work. The "Donate" button works like a champ, though!

http://www.intelligentdesign.org/whatisid.php
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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby E-lad » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:31 pm

CriticalEye wrote:At the Discovery Institute's website Center of Science and Culture, they pose the question, "Is intelligent design a scientific theory?" They answer the question as thus;

"Yes. The scientific method is commonly described as a four-step process involving observations, hypothesis, experiments, and conclusion. Intelligent design begins with the observation that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information (CSI). Design theorists hypothesize that if a natural object was designed, it will contain high levels of CSI. Scientists then perform experimental tests upon natural objects to determine if they contain complex and specified information. One easily testable form of CSI is irreducible complexity, which can be discovered by experimentally reverse-engineering biological structures to see if they require all of their parts to function. When ID researchers find irreducible complexity in biology, they conclude that such structures were designed."

Does anyone else think this isn't exactly a scientific theory? If a irreducible complexity test turns out to be incorrect, doesn't this mean the theory is dead in the water? Either way, I don't understand how irreducible complexity suggests intelligent design.

I would ask them directly but, there isn't anywhere on their site to do so and their email link doesn't seem to work. The "Donate" button works like a champ, though!

http://www.intelligentdesign.org/whatisid.php


Their crazy train runs off the rails in the second sentence:

Intelligent design begins with the observation that intelligent agents produce complex and specified information (CSI).


There is no experiment that shows this to be true. That is purely a presupposition and hardly passes muster as a conjecture. Of course intelligent agents produce complex things, like rocket engines, but no one knows exactly how information came about. Also, CSI is created through evolution as seen in the evolution of the least complex to the most complex organisms.

Thanks for stopping by, CriticalEye!
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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby BaldySlaphead » Sat Aug 11, 2012 1:43 pm

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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby E-lad » Sat Aug 11, 2012 2:12 pm

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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby CriticalEye » Sun Aug 12, 2012 4:00 am

Hmm, seems I've found some more contradicting information.
Dr. Paul Nelson, CSC Fellow and ID proponent said something totally different than his DI friends in "The Measure of Design," Touchstone magazine, 2004

"We don't have such a theory [ID] right now, and that's a problem. Without a theory, it's very hard to know where to direct your research focus. Right now, we've got a bag of powerful intuitions, and a handful of notions such as `irreducible complexity' and `specified complexity' - but, as yet, no general theory of biological design."
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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby zilch » Mon Aug 13, 2012 7:28 am

CriticalEye wrote:Does anyone else think this isn't exactly a scientific theory? If a irreducible complexity test turns out to be incorrect, doesn't this mean the theory is dead in the water?

Exactly. I agree that ID is a valid scientific observation (we do observe that intelligent agents engage in design), and a valid hypothesis, but the problem is that the idea of identifiable irreducible complexity presupposes that one understands everything about what evolution can and cannot do.

But we don't understand everything about biology and evolution. This means, of course, that there is an Evolution of the Gaps that parallels the God of the Gaps. But science works and the gaps are getting smaller. The gaps God gets to live in are thus also getting smaller. This leaves less space for ignorance, and less space for God Almighty. I'll go with the winning team.

CriticalEye wrote:Hmm, seems I've found some more contradicting information.
Dr. Paul Nelson, CSC Fellow and ID proponent said something totally different than his DI friends in "The Measure of Design," Touchstone magazine, 2004

"We don't have such a theory [ID] right now, and that's a problem. Without a theory, it's very hard to know where to direct your research focus. Right now, we've got a bag of powerful intuitions, and a handful of notions such as `irreducible complexity' and `specified complexity' - but, as yet, no general theory of biological design."

Sounds like a smart guy. Is he still an IDer?
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Re: DI's Scientific Theory of Intelligent Design

Postby Godlesspanther2 » Mon Aug 13, 2012 9:27 pm

The Dishonesty Institute is just as fucked up as the YECs. They start with their preferred and dogmatic conclusion -- this stuff was all intelligently designed -- and then cherry-pick, twist, distort, fabricate, or omit the evidence so it fits with the preferred conclusion. Anti-science.

But they must be doing something right because the DONATE button works so well.
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