Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
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30-03-2016, 01:12 PM (This post was last modified: 30-03-2016 01:22 PM by Bucky Ball.)
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 11:21 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  I'd want to know what the comparison in your analogy would be. Imagine a similar scenario you painted, that the man could arrive in endless variety of places, but he ends up at home, as opposed to just some general place.

There is no "analogy" *in there*. You've twisted it to fit your mentality.

(30-03-2016 11:21 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Clearly we would recognize the event as an improbable outcome correct? A bit more astonishing than him arriving just at any other irrelevant place.

Maybe. Maybe not. We have not "arrived at home". So that analogy IS false. We are where we are. Period.

(30-03-2016 11:21 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  And wouldn't we say that existence of creatures like ourself, the cosmos giving rise to a means of knowing itself. That this is also an improbable outcome?

Not at all. Sensory input systems arose to promote survival. The storage of those (memory) arose as it promoted even better survival, (and many animals who are not conscious have them both). Sensory input, rapidly integrated in complex brains, referenced to memory, produces the sensation we call "consciousness". Ours is a bit further evolved. With the use of those, animals have become more and more aware of their surroundings. It helps survival. The *cosmos* is not aware of *itself*. That sounds all nice and poetic. It's not true, precisely. At all. Are rocks on the moon aware ? The chemistry that gave rise to life is rather probable, in fact. I've linked you to it many times. I see you never watched it.

(30-03-2016 11:21 AM)Tomasia Wrote:  Now I would see our existence more so as the man ending up at home, even if we imagine he just beat some astronomical odds to do so, out of blind luck. Would you agree with this, or would you see it more or less like the idea of arriving at some generic place?

Yeah you would. Tell that to the parents of the tyke I saw this morning holding him as he cried, dying of leukemia. They "arrived at home" ?
Your bias and ignorance may be astonishing, but the odds are NOT *astronomical*.

Insufferable know-it-all.Einstein God has a plan for us. Please stop screwing it up with your prayers.
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30-03-2016, 01:31 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 12:20 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  I would think matter being able to organize itself to produce self-aware creatures, is a profoundly astonishing thing, that it even has such capacities, to produce a means of knowing itself? (This in fact has little do with patterns, or the outcome of roles of dice, but the dice itself. )

But you personally don't though?

Why do we not share the same level of astonishment, even if we don't agree on the bigger question here?

Bear with me here, let’s use my example on post 115 of the red marble.

You are blidfolded and reach into a vat of unknown size of unknown contents and pull out a red marble. You are amazed! “Look”, you say, “A red marble! Astonishing!”

Without having any other data you are convinced that this red marble is a rare and unique thing. Then the curtain is lifted and you stare at an Olympic sized pool filled with red marbles, here and there you see a blue one but not many. Are you still astonished? The astonishment should be reserved for having pulled out one of the very few blue marbles but you have no way of knowing this.

Without sufficient data to ascribe a probability to your red marble selection there simply isn’t any reason to be all ga-ga over your single data point.

Can you understand why using planet Earth as the only data point is insufficient to determine if life is rare or common in the universe?

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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30-03-2016, 01:55 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 12:20 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 11:26 AM)Grasshopper Wrote:  No. Humans have evolved to recognize patterns (sometimes even when they're not there), so we like to attach significance to them. But arriving at home after the one-year journey is no more special or improbable than arriving anywhere else. Just like rolling all sixes with dice is no more improbable than rolling any other combination.

This is one thing I never really understood, and not that it requires anyone to believe it was intentional, but failing to acknowledge it as astonishing thing. If a man arrived at home, beating astronomical odds, even if we believed that this was blind luck, we'd still be like wow that's pretty fucking amazing. Perhaps your wouldn't?

I would think matter being able to organize itself to produce self-aware creatures, is a profoundly astonishing thing, that it even has such capacities, to produce a means of knowing itself? (This in fact has little do with patterns, or the outcome of roles of dice, but the dice itself. )

But you personally don't though?

Why do we not share the same level of astonishment, even if we don't agree on the bigger question here?

But the odds are not any more astronomical than they are for any other specific location. You see arriving at home (or rolling all sixes, or a universe with human life) as something "special" and therefore more unlikely. But it's not. It has the same probability of occurring as any other specific outcome.
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30-03-2016, 02:10 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 01:55 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  But the odds are not any more astronomical than they are for any other specific location. You see arriving at home (or rolling all sixes, or a universe with human life) as something "special" and therefore more unlikely. But it's not. It has the same probability of occurring as any other specific outcome.

Perhaps my analogy wasn't that good. But I'm curious as to your responses to some other questions.

In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%.

What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?

Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet?

Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently? Or could this outcome likely just a be one-off occurrence, possibly not to repeat itself again regardless of how much time transpires.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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30-03-2016, 02:18 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:10 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 01:55 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  But the odds are not any more astronomical than they are for any other specific location. You see arriving at home (or rolling all sixes, or a universe with human life) as something "special" and therefore more unlikely. But it's not. It has the same probability of occurring as any other specific outcome.

Perhaps my analogy wasn't that good. But I'm curious as to your responses to some other questions.

In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%.

What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?

Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet?

Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently?

"In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%."

The man in your analogy will always arrive somewhere. This is why your analogy makes no sense to the point you think you're making.

"What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?"

Life is a natural phenomenon that has occurred no less than once in the universe. Given the size of the universe and the existence of other planets like Earth, the probability of life existing or arising on them is >0%.

"Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet? "

"Human-life?" I assume you mean "human-like." Are you talking about life existing or only human life existing as being interesting or special? Why single out the human species and not any other individual species? Why not ask if a "beetle-like" life-form exists elsewhere?

"Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently?"

There are already "human-like" species on Earth because we share common ancestors.

Humans aren't the epitome of evolution or life. Eyes aren't unique to us. Nor are brains or social networks or the ability to communicate or even the use of tools.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
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30-03-2016, 02:20 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:10 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 01:55 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  But the odds are not any more astronomical than they are for any other specific location. You see arriving at home (or rolling all sixes, or a universe with human life) as something "special" and therefore more unlikely. But it's not. It has the same probability of occurring as any other specific outcome.

Perhaps my analogy wasn't that good. But I'm curious as to your responses to some other questions.

In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%.

What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?

Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet?

Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently? Or could this outcome likely just a be one-off occurrence, possibly not to repeat itself again regardless of how much time transpires.

Look at Full Circle's postings in this thread. We don't have nearly enough data to answer your questions. It's quite possible that the development of life was inevitable, and that life exists in millions of places throughout the universe. It's also possible that the development of life is highly unlikely, and we just got lucky (like someone who wins the lottery). We just don't know enough to say.

But none of this means that life must have been designed -- anymore than a person winning the lottery means he must have cheated. Also, the more you know about biology, the more obvious it becomes that if life was designed, the designer did a bad job of it. A competent designer could have made things much more efficient and durable than they are.
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30-03-2016, 02:20 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:10 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 01:55 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  But the odds are not any more astronomical than they are for any other specific location. You see arriving at home (or rolling all sixes, or a universe with human life) as something "special" and therefore more unlikely. But it's not. It has the same probability of occurring as any other specific outcome.

Perhaps my analogy wasn't that good. But I'm curious as to your responses to some other questions.

In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%.

What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?

Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet?

Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently? Or could this outcome likely just a be one-off occurrence, possibly not to repeat itself again regardless of how much time transpires.

You're not special. Humans aren't special. Humans are one species among billions that have existed over the course of the last 4 billion years, and we are far from the most successful or important.

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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30-03-2016, 02:25 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:20 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  Look at Full Circle's postings in this thread. We don't have nearly enough data to answer your questions. It's quite possible that the development of life was inevitable, and that life exists in millions of places throughout the universe. It's also possible that the development of life is highly unlikely, and we just got lucky (like someone who wins the lottery). We just don't know enough to say.

It's also quite possible that humanlike life is a one-off occurrence? It's quite possible that it's not to be found anywhere else in the cosmos but here? It was clearly a one-off occurrence on our planet.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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30-03-2016, 02:28 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:25 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 02:20 PM)Grasshopper Wrote:  Look at Full Circle's postings in this thread. We don't have nearly enough data to answer your questions. It's quite possible that the development of life was inevitable, and that life exists in millions of places throughout the universe. It's also possible that the development of life is highly unlikely, and we just got lucky (like someone who wins the lottery). We just don't know enough to say.

It's also quite possible that humanlike life is a one-off occurrence? It's quite possible that it's not to be found anywhere else in the cosmos but here? It was clearly a one-off occurrence on our planet.

All species that exist and have existed are "one-off" occurrences. Facepalm

Being nice is something stupid people do to hedge their bets
-Rick
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30-03-2016, 02:29 PM
RE: Shortcomings of the "probability of life" argument
(30-03-2016 02:20 PM)TheBeardedDude Wrote:  
(30-03-2016 02:10 PM)Tomasia Wrote:  Perhaps my analogy wasn't that good. But I'm curious as to your responses to some other questions.

In your analogy, the man arriving a any non-specific place was 100%.

What's the equivalent here? Of life occurring perhaps not in this universe but another one?

Would you say that given enough universes, and enough time, that it's inevitable that human-life such exists on another planet?

Would you say that given enough time on Earth, that another human-like species will develop here on earth as well, from a separate lineage? Sort of the way eyes have developed in a dozen different species independently? Or could this outcome likely just a be one-off occurrence, possibly not to repeat itself again regardless of how much time transpires.

You're not special. Humans aren't special. Humans are one species among billions that have existed over the course of the last 4 billion years, and we are far from the most successful or important.

Yet here we are.

I doubt other animals are secretly having discussions among themselves as to how they got here.

"Tell me, muse, of the storyteller who has been thrust to the edge of the world, both an infant and an ancient, and through him reveal everyman." ---Homer the aged poet.

"In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it."
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