(Visited 54 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0 A study on mutational possibilities suggests that benefits to fitness are too rare to account for evolution.A bombshell article on PhysOrg seems to pull the rug out from under the Darwinian slogan, “survival of the fittest.”When you think about evolution, ‘survival of the fittest’ is probably one of the first things that comes into your head. However, new research from Oxford University finds that the ‘fittest’ may never arrive in the first place and so aren’t around to survive.By modelling populations over long timescales, the study showed that the ‘fitness’ of their traits was not the most important determinant of success. Instead, the most genetically available mutations dominated the changes in traits. The researchers found that the ‘fittest’ simply did not have time to be found, or to fix in the population over evolutionary timescales.Harry Dayantis interviewed the co-author of a paper in PLoS ONE, Ard A. Louis of Oxford, who says the new phrase should be “arrival of the frequent.” The paper explains, “In other words, if the fittest never ‘arrive’ on the timescales of evolutionary change, then they can’t fix.” If “the frequent” mutants do not generate evolutionary progress or innovation, though, how can macroevolution take place? It seems equivalent to random genetic drift.Whatever that possibility turns out to be, Louis recognizes his idea is a challenge to traditional evolutionary theory that relies on mutation and natural selection: Traditional evolutionary theory focuses primarily on the work of natural selection. We are challenging this emphasis by claiming that strong biases in the rates at which traits can arrive through variation may direct evolution towards outcomes that are not simply the ‘fittest’.Fitness, of course, needs to be defined (see “Fitness for Dummies,” 10/29/02). Assuming the traditional view for now, it would seem that mutational changes that do not improve fitness (whatever that is) would end up sorting out existing traits – changing traits like coloration that would be unlikely to innovate or add genetic information.Louis says that mathematical models of evolution invariably include simplifying assumptions. “In our calculations we include difference in rates of the arrival of variation, something not traditionally taken into account in population genetics,” he said, adding that the new model only considered microbes, not more complex multicellular organisms. But since higher organisms are also made of cells (where the mutations occur), it would seem higher-fitness mutations would be even more rare because of pleiotropic effects (changes that might improve one gene but damage other dependent genes).Louis was asked how his ideas have been received by evolutionary biologists:On the one hand, biologists who work on evolution and development have not been so surprised because they have long argued that developmental processes can bias organisms to evolve in certain directions over others. Others have reacted with some caution, which is probably wise given the potentially far-reaching nature of our claims. I think we have raised a lot more questions that we have answered.Louis himself was “very surprised to find that the biasing effect [against higher fitness mutations] could be so enormously strong,” he remarked. A theoretical physicist (not a biologist), Louis was inspired by the beautiful design in cells to investigate how they arose: “Biology is full of amazing self-assembled structures, and so we began asking: how do these structures evolve in the first place?”OK, that’s it. Game over. Darwinists, go home. Bill Nye, you lose. Let’s not kill and mutilate any more millions through eugenics and government democide, what do you say? Darwin is dead; it’s long past time to face the facts. “Survival of the fittest” lands on the dustbin of false notions. If this new work raises more questions than it answers, then Darwinism is going backwards.The longevity of myths like Darwinism is appalling. Here we are, in 2014, a century after Hugo de Vries admitted that evolution “cannot explain the arrival of the fittest,” and these new guys agree – not only confirming de Vries, but making his conclusion far worse for Darwin. At the end of the paper, they state:When Hugo de Vries was advocating for the importance of mutations in evolution, he famously said “Natural selection may explain the survival of the fittest, but it cannot explain the arrival of the fittest”. Here we argue that the fittest may never arrive. Instead evolutionary dynamics can be dominated by the “arrival of the frequent”.If that is “far-reaching” now, it was “far reaching” a century ago, but Darwin’s juggernaut has continued to coast on fumes, rolling downhill with no power, running over anyone standing in the way. How many times does a notion have to be falsified before its proponents understand that it’s been falsified? This is like trying to kill a vampire. When it finally dies, so does Darwin’s other “zombie idea,” sexual selection (1/24/14). Darwin needs to get out of biology and find other work at monster.com.“Biology is full of amazing self-assembled structures, and so we began asking: how do these structures evolve in the first place?” For one thing, they didn’t evolve (Darwinism is dead, remember?) Let’s answer the question with causes known to be capable of producing such effects: intelligent design.
3 September 2009 South Africans’ living conditions are steadily improving, according to Statistics South Africa’s latest General Household Survey, which registered increases in school attendance, satisfaction with health services, and ownership of houses, televisions and – no surprises here – mobile phones. Access to electricity and proper sanitation has also improved, the survey found, although piped water services are lagging. Hunger levels remain low, while the number of South Africans receiving state social grants has more than tripled since 2002. The annual survey, which measured various aspects of the living circumstances of South African households for the year 2008, was released on Wednesday.Education The survey found that the percentage of South African children attending primary school had grown substantially since 2002 – although still not enough to meet the country’s early childhood development goals for 2010. At the other end of the spectrum, the percentage of secondary school students who completed grade 12 increased from 22.8% in 2002 to 24.6% in 2008, while the proportion of adults with no formal education decreased over the same period, from 10.3% to 8.8%. According to the survey, between 2002 and 2008:The percentage of children aged 5-9 who are attending school increased from 79.9% to 88.6%.The percentage of 5-year-olds attending school increased from 40.4% to 63.3%.The percentage of 6-year-olds attending school increased from 70.9% to 87.1%. Among children aged 7 years and above, lack of money for fees remained the most common reason given for not attending school.Health care Statistics South Africa’s survey recorded higher levels of satisfaction with public health services, up from 81.1% of people who used these services in 2002 to 91.2% in 2008. In the private sector, satisfaction levels increased slightly over the same period, from 92.8% to 95.6%. Medical aid coverage remained the lowest among black South Africans, with only 8.4% of people covered in 2008, compared to 68.5% of the white population.Housing and household assets According to the survey, the overall percentage of households living in informal dwellings increased marginally from 2002 to 2008, from 13.1% to 13.4%. However, this was an improvement on the 15.9% recorded in 2005. There was also continued growth in ownership among those occupying formal separate dwellings, from 62.6% in 2002 to 70.1% in 2008. And over the same period, television ownership increased from 59.3% to 72.4%, while ownership of mobile phones more than doubled, from 37.6% to 79.1%.Electricity, water, sanitation Of all the basic services, access to a connection to the mains electricity supply improved the most, the survey found, increasing from 77.4% of households in 2002 to 82.6% in 2008. However, the percentage of households receiving piped water supplies from their local municipalities decreased from 78.9% in 2004 to 74.8% in 2008. The percentage of households with no toilet facility, or having to use bucket toilets, declined from 12.5% in 2002 to 7.7% in 2008. At the same time, the percentage of households using municipal refuse disposal services increased steadily, from 58.8% to 60.5%.Hunger, social grants, child runaways Reported levels of hunger in 2008 were very close to those of 2006 and slightly up from those of 2007, the survey found. However, hunger levels remained low, at 2.4% for adults and 2.5% for children – compared to the 6.8% of households who said their children and adults suffered from hunger in 2002. According to the survey, the percentage of South Africans receiving welfare grants from the state more than tripled between 2002 and 2008, from 3.7% to 13.3%. At the same time, the 2008 survey recorded the highest level of children aged 5-17 who had left their homes and whose whereabouts were unknown, with 8.4% of households affected in 2008 compared to 4.5% in 2002. SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material
Brand South Africa is taking the Play Your Part / Sowetan Dialogues to Limpopo, with the latest in the series set to take place in the provincial capital of Polokwane.Titled ‘Debating Zuma’s State of the Nation: Fact vs Fiction’, the dialogue will take place at the Ngoako Ramathlodi Sports Complex in Seshego on 6 March, from 6pm until 8.45pm. This public dialogue forms part of a six part dialogue series aimed at promoting the pillars of South Africa’s National Development Plan, as well as to promote civic pride.President Jacob Zuma’s State of the Nation address, delivered in Parliament in Cape Town on 13 February, touched on a number of issues regarding the progress that the country has made since 1994. He also highlighted the challenges that the country has faced and still faces.Some have welcomed the speech as a tribute to what the government has achieved in the 20 years of democracy, while others have criticised the President for painting too rosy a picture. The Play Your Part / Sowetan Dialogue will give panelists the opportunity to engage with the issues that the President outlined, with the objective to explain its meaning for ordinary citizens in their everyday lives.“How will what the President said impact their lives at a practical level? How will his commitments translate into progress and change in their lives?” These are the questions that the panelists will seek to answer at the end of the day.The Dialogue also provides members of the audience with a chance to respond, as well as put forward their views on the topics raised in the President’s State of the Nation address, as well as put forward ideas on how ordinary South Africans can Play their Part to realise their desires and ensure that the government’s plans for their communities are carried out.The facilitator at the event will be Capricorn FM’s Ntsieni ‘Big Daddy’ Ramabulana, while the panel of speakers include Limpopo province Premier Stanley Mathabatha, political analyst Elvis Masoga and Polokwane Chamber of Business President Percy Mongalo.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Nothing different this morning to our forecast the rest of the week. It is warm, and it is dry. Yesterday’s pop up shower action was nearly as expected but today there is no threat of even any pop-up moisture and that is the same story tomorrow and Friday. Sunshine will dominate.This weekend we are zeroing in on that moisture that looks like it wants to drift in from the north, as an offshoot of the Great Lakes disturbance. We are going to insert scattered showers in our Saturday afternoon forecast for areas from US 30 northward but will keep the state dry south of US 30. The northern rains will be no more than a few hundredths to a tenth or two, and will have only 30% coverage. The precipitation, if it falls, will not last long either. However, the threat can linger into evening.We are speeding out next system up just a bit as well. That means on Sunday, we can see scattered showers develop north and east of a line from Van Wert to Marietta. We only expect a few hundredths to a quarter inch through the day with 60% coverage in that part of the state, but we can’t keep things clear either. Showers and thunderstorms spread across the rest of the state Monday midday through Tuesday, giving nearly 80% coverage, and rain totals of .25″-1″. The map at right shows cumulative rain totals through next Tuesday. This includes the scattered weekend action, but the bulk of this comes from the Monday-Tuesday event. We are dry next Wednesday.Up to this point in the forecast, various computer models are in relative agreement. They may differ on timing a bit, but generally have moisture totals that are similar, and hold true our thoughts as well. Next Thursday features a major divergence of opinion. One model, the European, develops a monster thunderstorm complex over Illinois Wednesday overnight, and rips it through Indiana and Ohio. Action in Ohio would likely wait to really kick off until midday Thursday or a little later in this scenario. However, others, including the GFS, Canadian and Japanese models, have absolutely nothing in that time frame. Not even a little bit of moisture. Our forecast has favored dryness behind the early week system and we are keeping that bias this morning. However, it is important to follow the Euro, as it has handled the near-term pattern well, even down to the pop-up action of yesterday. Plus, we will be in need of some significant moisture by that time, even if we do pick up totals early in the week closer to the maximum end of the ranges. Given the current state of crops, moving into and through the reproductive phases, a rain of large magnitude and at that timing would be huge. But, it also looks to be a little too good to be true…a little too much to jump on right now.For the extended period, we have dry weather from next Friday through Monday the 23rd. Then we have a front for the 24th with half to 1 inch potential, followed by a return to dry weather for the 25th through at least the 27th. If this forecast verifies, that means we have exactly 2 chances of significant moisture between now and the 27th, and we have not seen much significant moisture for the month thus far.Temperatures will be above normal through the next 10 days, save for when rains are falling. So, next Monday can be normal to slightly below, but that is it in our current forecast. Our average above normal push will be around 2-5 degrees over regular daytime highs.
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The Eden Gardens in Kolkata.Former India spinner Bishen Singh Bedi on Friday said it was wrong on part of the organisers to deprive Kolkata the right to host the India-England World Cup match and the local authorities should be given some more time to complete the renovation work at the historic Eden Gardens.After an inspection, the International Cricket Council on Thursday decided to shift India’s group match against England, scheduled for February 27, from Eden Gardens, saying that the venue will not be ready in time to host the match.But Bedi said the kind of cricketing atmosphere the city of Kolkata has is unmatched and it should not be deprived from hosting the high-profile encounter.”It’s wrong whether ICC or BCCI (has done it) because the electrifying atmosphere, which is experienced in Kolkata is not seen anywhere in the world. I am not backing any cricket Association but it is an important game and Kolkata crowd deserves to watch it,” Bedi told PTI.”The other matches at Eden are insignificant (from the crowd point of view). Kolkata, Mumbai, Bangalore are the cities that have cricket culture and they should not be deprived of holding good matches,” he added.Apart from the India-England tie, Eden is slated to host Ireland’s two matches — against South Africa (March 15) and the Netherlands (March 18), followed by Kenya-Zimbabwe game on March 20.Bedi said if Mumbai’s Wankhede stadium can be given extra time to complete renovation work, Eden Gardens also deserve similar treatment.”It’s not time to settle political scores. How do you know, that they can’t complete the work? Let’s put the ball in their court and let them deliver,” he said.advertisement”They have awarded the semi-final to Mohali, a city which has no cricket culture. It’s agriculture there and not cricket culture.”In England during the World Cup, Northamptonshire or Cardiff were not given important matches. It’s Birmingham, Nottingham, Old Trafford that got important matches because of the culture,” Bedi added.-With PTI inputs
WATCH: Liverpool ace Oxlade-Chamberlain clashes with angry Man Utd fansby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool ace Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain clashed Manchester United fans after full-time at Old Trafford.The midfielder was clearly told to “F*** off” while talking to one fan, while another rejected his offer of a fist bump.It’s not clear why the 26-year-old went to the home fans after the end of the 1-1 draw.Some viewers on social media claimed that Ox had been getting some stick from that section of the crowd while warming up.Oxlade-Chamberlain involved in row with Man Utd fans as smiling star told to ‘f*** off’ and has fist bump rejected It is not clear why the smiling Ox went over to the fans. The incident took place after the 1-1 draw between Man Utd and Liverpool at Old Trafford pic.twitter.com/x6b86Lx20t— Lilian Chan (@bestgug) October 20, 2019 About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Twitter/Playoff Twitter/PlayoffTuesday night, the College Football Playoff committee unveiled its third set of rankings, which features no changes from 1-5, but a major shakeup after. Clemson, Alabama, Ohio State, Notre Dame and Iowa held serve, but a number of teams, including Oklahoma, made major moves.At this point, while there is still a great deal of football to be played, a few things are obvious. There are seven teams that are in complete control of their own destiny. What does that really mean? If these seven teams win out, they’re locks for the College Football Playoff – no question. These squads are either undefeated or are involved in virtual play-in games that will knock out other contenders.The two teams with the best playoff odds that don’t control their own destiny? That’d be Oklahoma, which, given its loss to Texas, would need a little help to get in with an 11-1 record, and Notre Dame, which won’t have the luxury of claiming a conference championship, should it also finish with an 11-1 mark. Oddly enough, there are many who believe that the last playoff spot could come down to the Sooners and the Irish.Here are the seven teams that control their own destiny.7 Teams: Clemson >>>Pages: Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8