Pages

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Unintelligently designed

Have you have ever seen a house that was designed as it was built? Sort of a "we'll make that decision when we get to it" kind of attitude. These kinds of houses tend to have all sorts of compromises, stairwells placed inconveniently, windows at the wrongs heights unable to see through them, doors coming in on funny angles or opening the wrong way. These design flaws are smoothed over by ad hoc decisions to try and make the best of what is already there. This is quite contrary to a house that was built by design from scratch. Unless the designer overlooked these things, many of the problems aforementioned would not arise in a well designed house.
The same analogy can be applied to living organisms. If they had been designed from scratch, by a good designer you wouldn't expect to find inexplicable compromises. On the other hand, if an organism had evolved, making the best out of what was availiable with small changes over time design flaws and compromises are not a problem at all.

Nature has many examples of these inherent 'design flaws' which not only are no problem at all for evolution to explain, but in fact are strong evidence for evolution in themselves.
Here is a list of a few 'design flaws' found in modern animals.
-The Human eye has a blind spot due to very poor design.
-The recurrent laryngeal nerve backtracks and makes a loop around the Aortic arch, in the case of the giraffe this results in an extra 20 feet of nerve that is produced for no reason.
- The human jaw is too small for our teeth, hence why many people have problems with wisdom teeth.
-Useless wings on flightless birds.
-The existence of the pharynx, used for breathing and eating, often leading to choking.

There are many more we know about, and no doubt many many more we havn't discovered yet. These 'design flaws' are strong evidence that evolution has occurred, and are very problematic for people who propose that life was created by an 'intelligent designer'. Their 'designer' should be relabelled as the 'inept designer' or the 'unintelligent designer' instead.

23 comments:

  1. You forgot humans spines. Pretty crap way of supporting an upright biped.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ah yes.. the lower back especially..
    Also don't forget that all humans are born prematurely because our hips aren't wide enough to give birth to our large heads. Hence the need for C-sections so often with babies that are late.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I think the biggest 'design flaw' is the human mind and how we think, how can a 'almighty creator' let something so small cause the most destructive and evil creations known to man. If there was a god and he puts his ideas into man what does that say about him just look at some of the past events thats happened.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I find it highly amusing that you claim the eye has a "very poor design", happily watching the computer screen, leaving your brain to interpret everything you read via the autonomic nervous system (i.e. you don't even have to think about it) presenting the information it to you in "real time". Your eyes may not be perfect - but PLEASE do not say they have "bad design". It is slightly arrogant - especially when you rely on their ability to adjust their refractive properties (when looking at distant or close objects), dilate (when the sympathetic nervous system is activated during times of "alarm", or high levels of light are present), detect colour, movement, etc etc etc.

    Admittedly you seem to have chosen a couple of examples in the human body which could be better; however if I was to present examples of how the body regulates and maintains homeostasis - it would easily out number the examples which point toward "bad design".

    For example, if your osmolarity drops in the blood (low salt concentration), your blood volume drops due to osmosis of water into the surrounding cells (which decreases blood pressure). This is not good. You are dying. Do we do anything about it? No (well, not actively). But our body does - your juxtaglomerular cells in the afferent arteriole stretch less due to the decreased blood volume, this causes the release of renin which catalyses the conversion of angiotensinogen to ang I, and ACE comverts ang I to angiotensin II. Resultantly, this causes vasoconstriction (which increases blood pressure) and the release of aldosterone from the adrenal cortex which increases Na+ reabsorption in the nephron, thus increasing osmolarity and hence blood volume and pressure.

    This is a small example of good design - without this mechanism we could not survive (in this evolutionary form). It is occurring all the time in our body, balancing the levels of sodium so we can live happily and write blogs.

    ReplyDelete
  5. The reason I say the human eye has a poor 'design' is because of two main things. There are several veins and arteries in between the retina and the lense. In a camera this would be equivalent to having a wire between the lense and the film. It's a sub standard design.
    The other thing is significat blind spot right in the middle of your eye. Your eye works around this blind spot by 'shaking' but as I mentioned in the blog post, this is a compromise to get a functioning eye, it is not the result of a good design.

    I'm not denying that the eye is a wonderful thing, all I'm saying is that if an engineer had designed the human eye it would have been sent back to the manufacturer.

    No doubt there are many many excellent 'designs' in nature and I would never deny that for a second. The whole point of the post was to point out several things that didn't quite make the cut. These things are evidence against an intelligent designer.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Or, if not against an intelligent designer, certainly against an all powerful all, knowing one. Humans make mistakes in designs all the time but if a god or gods are supposed to be perfect then why would he not design our bodies to have optimum function?
    Unless he/she/they thinks we deserve to suffer from back pain or choke to death on pretzels.

    ReplyDelete
  7. William... just because you know about human biology and alot of big medical words does not mean you are more likely to be correct about theories involving creation... either that or you just copied a page from wikipedia, im not really sure. From what i can gather from your statement, all of those so called 'intelligently created' bodily functions have one purpose - to prevent death. But if we are intended to go to heaven and are created by god to do so from the beginning, then why did he bother going to such great lengths to ensure our survival? Why do humans and animals, both in body and in mind, fight so hard to stay alive, why do we fear death so much? If we are going to a better place as intended by god, surely there is no point? Of course this leads to some classic atheist questions.. why bother putting us on earth at all? And did god create his own juxtomergular cells and adrenal cortex or did he suddenly appear fully formed? And Surely if he does not need such systems to be a living entity then he could have designed us in a similiar way?

    ReplyDelete
  8. I'm not sure but he's definitely not an idiot.

    ReplyDelete
  9. MT, not once did I suggest any theory about creation. I was just refuting the claim that the eye/the rest of the body has poor design.

    To paraphrase, the body is a complex and amazing piece of biology/evolution/creation or whatever it may be, and it is naive to call it "poor".

    P.S. The reason I used all the big words was simply because I was studying for my anatomy/physiology exam =D

    ReplyDelete
  10. I never said the whole body was poor, but rather certain parts are lacking, and in some peoples cases, rather lacking indeed.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I'd like to comment that the recurrent laryngeal nerve that I mentions makes the loop around the aortic arch in virtually all mammals, more evidence of common descent.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Indeed. There are some parts of the body which could be improved, and you never know, with biomedical engineering these days maybe we'll get to experience those improvements...

    This is a cool area of development if you haven't seen it already =D

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X85Lpuczy3E

    ReplyDelete
  13. Keep representing the forum good work on your behave

    ReplyDelete
  14. Por que eliminar os nosos comentarios awesome. Por que oprimir o pobo pequeno. Somos moitos. Nós só facemos isto causa o seu home divertido! Non será unha alegría matar!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Bler ka kofshët e madhe

    ReplyDelete
  16. Why am I being a killjoy and deleting comments? because you're writing stupid things in arabic like "Blair has large thighs"

    ReplyDelete
  17. Hahaha, I think I know who the multi-lingual chap is :D

    ReplyDelete
  18. Its funny because I thought you would probably take them too seriously and write comments like that. Deleting comments was even funnier. Martin lol ;) Blair has mighty thighs!

    ReplyDelete
  19. HAHAHA Martin! Now that would be awesome. Can I invite him to your site?

    ReplyDelete
  20. If you want sure, it's a publically accessable blog for a reason.

    ReplyDelete