He is forever suggesting that the universal acid of natural selection may be involved here or there. Except for some of the more far-flung philosophical discussions he makes his points fairly clearly. Dennett is probably best known as one of The Four Horsemen Dawkins, Dennett, Hitchens, and Harris , i. Occasional technical details might be difficult to follow if the listener is not familiar with the vocabulary of biology, but this should not prevent fluent comprehension of the work. An Idea Is Born Ch. Is it obvious that genetic changes are required for such a thing? Here science and philosophy get completely intertwined.
The Sword in the Stone15. The former's bang on for me, the latter's sounding a little dated!! Dennett vividly describes the theory itself and then extends Darwin's vision with impeccable arguments to their often surprising conclusions, challenging the views of some of the most famous scientists of our day. His pioneering effort to classify them still makes a lot of sense. One doesn't invent theories or configurations of matter; one discovers them in design space. When attempting to explain the processes inherent in a Word processing program, Dennett states that trying to understand the program in terms of electrical mechanics, or even at the quantum mechanics level is too much! Do reasons play any intelligible role in explanations of the cosmos? And as we shall see, the field of Artificial Intelligence is a quite direct descendant of Darwin's idea. That is the topic of this book. Even if he had nothing else to offer in this book, which is not the case at all, his treatment of what algorithms are all about is exquisite.
Because God made you, that's why I love you. . Talebian writing style of the author. Because, as the song reminds us, we want to know why. Most enjoyable are his mind experiments, his constructions made for the reader to better understand a point.
Searle could seize the high ground if he began by proposing that any true metaphysical theory must account for two essential truths which materialism cannot accommodate: first, that mind is more than matter; and second, that such things as truth, beauty, and goodness really do exist even if most people do not know how to recognize them. How modifying our diets and behaviors can bias our evolution in few generations. Forced Moves in the Game of Design 3. For example, the physicist Lee Smolin has proposed that black holes are in effect the birthplaces of offspring universes, in which the fundamental physical constants would differ slightly from those in the parent universe. Looking forward to looking up some reviews. My admiration for Darwin's magnificent idea is unbounded, but I, too, cherish many of the ideas and ideals that it seems to challenge, and want to protect them.
Roughly 47% of Americans believe the theories in this book to be complete and utter bullshit at best, and at worst the work of the devil. Not only all your children and your children's children, but all your brainchildren and your brainchildren's brainchildren must grow from the common stock of design elements, genes and memes. Isn't there a difference between those cases where we recognize Design before we understand its cause and those cases where we try to make Design manifest by concocting a story? The research, with Linda LaScola, was further extended to include other denominations and non-Christian clerics. The biggest gap looks almost comical in retrospect. But it did make the ivy twine and the sky so blue, so perhaps the song I love tells a truth after all. His arguments are sophisticated and are often fleshed out in erudite detail. One doesn't invent theories or configurations of matter; one discovers them in design space.
But Dennett does not so much champion adaptationism as excoriate those biologists who dare question it. Similarly, Dennett will introduce some cute idea that, it seems, will play an important role in his story, e. This one is made obsolete. Indeed rival scientific factions often engage in propaganda battles as ferocious as anything to be found in politics, or even in religious conflict. Darwin's Dangerous Idea is not a quick and easy read, but that is because it is so carefully crafted for the mind to follow. Because science is so successful in its own territory, however, scientists and their allied philosophers sometimes get bemused by dreams of world conquest.
The first half of the book did have some interesting stuff. But this is a dubious inference, Philo observes: human intelligence is no more than one of the springs and principles of the universe, as well as heat or cold, attraction or repulsion, and a hundred others, which fall under daily observation. Even the Evolutionary Biologists need to read this one. He also discusses quite a bit the idea of evolution as primarily an engineering problem for both the genes and the memes using examples from attempts at creating artificial intelligence among other things. The Quest for Real Meaning 2.
Philosopher Dan Dennett argues that the theory of natural selection is a 'universal acid', burning through our basic ideas about science and beyond, leaving a completely changed intellectual landscape. Dawkins handles memes better, Gould handles evolution better, and pretty much anything on the physics and spirituality bookshelves at the store does those domains better credit. Or are reasons -- Aristotle's type 4 causes -- only appropriate in explanations of the works and deeds of people or other rational agents? Artifacts are the most obvious cases; the goal or purpose of an artifact is the function it was designed to serve by its creator. The argument may seem strange and stilted to modern minds, but bear with it—consider it a sign of how far we have come since then. Dennett believes, and reiterates throughout this book, that Darwin's dangerous idea is not merely the idea of evolution, but evolution by natural selection. ? When I do find one I'll probably make it known somehow.