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Offline Reductio_ad_absurdum

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The Science Thread
« on: December 26, 2007, 08:42:36 PM »
I bet you didn't expect me to make this thread now did you?  :P  This thread however isn't about any particular viewpoint such as atheist or theist scientific thought, but just discussion about many questions we all have about our world and the macrocosm around us.

First question I have is about paleoarcheology and Gigantopithecus (unfortunately I was watching the History Channel bit about it just now... wasn't interested really except for this).  From what that show says and what I found with a simple look at Wikipedia is this about what bones we've discovered:

Quote from: Wikipedia
The first Gigantopithecus remains described by an anthropologist were found in 1935 by Ralph von Koenigswal in an Asian apothecary shop (fossilized teeth and bones are often ground into powder and used in some branches of Traditional Chinese medicine).[5] Von Koenigswal named the theorized species Gigantopithecus.[6]

Relatively few fossils of Gigantopithecus have been recovered. Aside from the molars recovered in Chinese traditional medicine shops, Liucheng Cave in Liuzhou-China has produced numerous gigantopithecus blacki teeth as well as several jawbones.[3] Other sites yielding significant finds were in Vietnam[2] and India[4]. These finds seem to suggest the range of Gigantopithecus was southeast Asia

An entire ape species is based on teeth and jawbones.  To my thinking, this is compared to basing an entire civilization based off clay pot fragments and spear heads.  You can reasonably deduce what the ape ate, how old it was before it died, how stressed it life was, and just information that can be obtained by modern day dentistry.  How though, can you justify treating this species to such a degree that it has been given?  How far can deductive reasoning go, and over-reaching fact assuming begins?  And maybe I'm just not reading enough into this... but I just want to discuss about this.

Again, if this goes past scientific discussion into theological cock strutting, I'm locking this thread faster than you can say, "Oh Momma!"


Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #1 on: December 26, 2007, 10:11:32 PM »
I bet you didn't expect me to make this thread now did you?  :P  This thread however isn't about any particular viewpoint such as atheist or theist scientific thought, but just discussion about many questions we all have about our world and the macrocosm around us.

First question I have is about paleoarcheology and Gigantopithecus (unfortunately I was watching the History Channel bit about it just now... wasn't interested really except for this).  From what that show says and what I found with a simple look at Wikipedia is this about what bones we've discovered:

Quote from: Wikipedia
The first Gigantopithecus remains described by an anthropologist were found in 1935 by Ralph von Koenigswal in an Asian apothecary shop (fossilized teeth and bones are often ground into powder and used in some branches of Traditional Chinese medicine).[5] Von Koenigswal named the theorized species Gigantopithecus.[6]

Relatively few fossils of Gigantopithecus have been recovered. Aside from the molars recovered in Chinese traditional medicine shops, Liucheng Cave in Liuzhou-China has produced numerous gigantopithecus blacki teeth as well as several jawbones.[3] Other sites yielding significant finds were in Vietnam[2] and India[4]. These finds seem to suggest the range of Gigantopithecus was southeast Asia

An entire ape species is based on teeth and jawbones.  To my thinking, this is compared to basing an entire civilization based off clay pot fragments and spear heads.  You can reasonably deduce what the ape ate, how old it was before it died, how stressed it life was, and just information that can be obtained by modern day dentistry.  How though, can you justify treating this species to such a degree that it has been given?  How far can deductive reasoning go, and over-reaching fact assuming begins?  And maybe I'm just not reading enough into this... but I just want to discuss about this.

Again, if this goes past scientific discussion into theological cock strutting, I'm locking this thread faster than you can say, "Oh Momma!"

But don't you think that's the point?  IF, science isn't that absolute, then how can science absolutely prove or refute anything?  The point being, if science can't absolutely prove life wasn't created, then creation is just as valid a science.  Science, IS supposed to be the study of what was, is, (will be, we will leave to science fiction for now).  You take these scientists to task for assuming far too much with just a few bone fragments.  Isn't it even more assumption to discredit or discount creation when there is NO evidence to the contrary?  I mean for pity sake, there isn't even one freaking fossil.   How could there be, the "theory" is a primoridial pool, and that doesn't leave behind anything. 

So, are you locking down, because "theology" shouldn't mix with science, or because my science was too threatening to some people's assumption?
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Offline Reductio_ad_absurdum

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #2 on: December 26, 2007, 10:25:16 PM »
I bet you didn't expect me to make this thread now did you?  :P  This thread however isn't about any particular viewpoint such as atheist or theist scientific thought, but just discussion about many questions we all have about our world and the macrocosm around us.

First question I have is about paleoarcheology and Gigantopithecus (unfortunately I was watching the History Channel bit about it just now... wasn't interested really except for this).  From what that show says and what I found with a simple look at Wikipedia is this about what bones we've discovered:

Quote from: Wikipedia
The first Gigantopithecus remains described by an anthropologist were found in 1935 by Ralph von Koenigswal in an Asian apothecary shop (fossilized teeth and bones are often ground into powder and used in some branches of Traditional Chinese medicine).[5] Von Koenigswal named the theorized species Gigantopithecus.[6]

Relatively few fossils of Gigantopithecus have been recovered. Aside from the molars recovered in Chinese traditional medicine shops, Liucheng Cave in Liuzhou-China has produced numerous gigantopithecus blacki teeth as well as several jawbones.[3] Other sites yielding significant finds were in Vietnam[2] and India[4]. These finds seem to suggest the range of Gigantopithecus was southeast Asia

An entire ape species is based on teeth and jawbones.  To my thinking, this is compared to basing an entire civilization based off clay pot fragments and spear heads.  You can reasonably deduce what the ape ate, how old it was before it died, how stressed it life was, and just information that can be obtained by modern day dentistry.  How though, can you justify treating this species to such a degree that it has been given?  How far can deductive reasoning go, and over-reaching fact assuming begins?  And maybe I'm just not reading enough into this... but I just want to discuss about this.

Again, if this goes past scientific discussion into theological cock strutting, I'm locking this thread faster than you can say, "Oh Momma!"

But don't you think that's the point?  IF, science isn't that absolute, then how can science absolutely prove or refute anything?  The point being, if science can't absolutely prove life wasn't created, then creation is just as valid a science.  Science, IS supposed to be the study of what was, is, (will be, we will leave to science fiction for now).  You take these scientists to task for assuming far too much with just a few bone fragments.  Isn't it even more assumption to discredit or discount creation when there is NO evidence to the contrary?  I mean for pity sake, there isn't even one freaking fossil.   How could there be, the "theory" is a primoridial pool, and that doesn't leave behind anything. 

So, are you locking down, because "theology" shouldn't mix with science, or because my science was too threatening to some people's assumption?

By fire, woman!  Must you spout off what exactly isn't beneficial for conversation?  Don't you know moderation?

I will not lock this thread unless it gets out of hand.  This is not a Creationism/ Intelligent Design Vs Darwinism thread!  Or the imperfection of science... or whatever have you.  It is just a discussion of objective scientific thought.

Again, does the Gigantopithecus have enough evidence for deductive reasoning on its life, or biological over-reaching?

EDIT:  By the way, I'm an evolutionary theist, old earth Creationist, what have you.  Science doesn't disprove or disallow but enriches theology.
« Last Edit: December 26, 2007, 10:28:16 PM by Reductio_ad_absurdum »


Offline BBQ Platypus

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #3 on: December 27, 2007, 04:21:03 AM »
http://www.besse.at/sms/smsintro.html

All you ever needed to know about science...can be found in a textbook.  For all the stuff you never, ever possibly could use, consult this guide.
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Offline AmandaGal

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #4 on: December 27, 2007, 04:36:42 AM »
I have always thought the theory of evolution requires just as much faith as "faith" does.  To my mind, they make a lot of assumptions based on scattered fossils when a single fossil is just a drip in time and even putting them together requires conjecture.  We've seen in recent years scientists say, "oops, we think we put this one together wrong" or "maybe we made some false assumptions."  Even if they are right, imagine if someone found a "fossil" of some great athlete and fossils of people like me, the majority, weren't found.  What would scientists theorize about us?  Hell, they'd probably just find an iPod and assume those were our battery packs.

In my mind, there's missing steps in evolution and some steps that don't make much sense, but I also admit I haven't studied it closely (I took a class in evolutionary biology and that's about it).  That being said there are also a lot of things that, in my mind, don't make sense with the creationist view.  I think there comes a point when you just have to say to hell with it and believe what most makes sense to you.

I think, on both accounts, there's a lot we don't know.  It's hard to conjecture about eons ago when we still argue about things that happened centuries ago and quite possibly haven't got that right either.
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Offline Chaos

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #5 on: December 27, 2007, 07:35:40 AM »
The fact is that there IS quite a hell of a lot about the ancient world we do not know yet, and probably never will, regardless of how sophisticated our tools become. And the scientists doing the research are just as fallible as any other Joe Schmoe you may encounter on the street... it's just that they've been specially trained for years to be SPECTACULARLY good at failing. ;D

In any case, it's very standard procedure amongst the scientific community to start making wild conjectures almost immediately when you discover something new - mostly to ensure that it is your name that gets attached to said finding, one way or another. We can often tell quite a lot about something from a very small sample of it (though of course, some of that conjecture ends up getting reversed later - ask 5 people what a T. Rex was and you will get 5 different answers). Take carcharocles megalodon, for example. Because it was a shark, and therefore mostly cartilage, ALL we have to go on for its specifics are jawbones and teeth... but we can still tell quite a lot about it with just that information, because a shark is, well, essentially a shark... they haven't changed much. So we can tell almost everything about c. megalodon from the limited fossil record we have. If we ever somehow stumbled across a whole one fossilized by some miracle chance of nature (frozen in a rock bed or something), we would almost certainly find out that most of our conjectures about it were correct.

Other species can be like this as well... they very recently found a partially preserved dinosaur that still had skin and feathers - so the more recent theories about their ancestry and evolutionary progeny from the last 30-40 years have turned out to be correct: they evolved into birds. 80 years ago any scientist who claimed that would have been laughed out of the field, but now it is pretty much accepted fact, and we are finding more and more fossil evidence to prove it.

So yes, while the scientific guesses that are made can be wrong, in some cases we really can infer quite a lot about a species even from a very small sampling of data. Or, we could just be totally wrong altogether (I'm looking at you, "Brontosaurus").
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Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #6 on: December 27, 2007, 08:55:32 AM »
I bet you didn't expect me to make this thread now did you?  :P  This thread however isn't about any particular viewpoint such as atheist or theist scientific thought, but just discussion about many questions we all have about our world and the macrocosm around us.

First question I have is about paleoarcheology and Gigantopithecus (unfortunately I was watching the History Channel bit about it just now... wasn't interested really except for this).  From what that show says and what I found with a simple look at Wikipedia is this about what bones we've discovered:

Quote from: Wikipedia
The first Gigantopithecus remains described by an anthropologist were found in 1935 by Ralph von Koenigswal in an Asian apothecary shop (fossilized teeth and bones are often ground into powder and used in some branches of Traditional Chinese medicine).[5] Von Koenigswal named the theorized species Gigantopithecus.[6]

Relatively few fossils of Gigantopithecus have been recovered. Aside from the molars recovered in Chinese traditional medicine shops, Liucheng Cave in Liuzhou-China has produced numerous gigantopithecus blacki teeth as well as several jawbones.[3] Other sites yielding significant finds were in Vietnam[2] and India[4]. These finds seem to suggest the range of Gigantopithecus was southeast Asia

An entire ape species is based on teeth and jawbones.  To my thinking, this is compared to basing an entire civilization based off clay pot fragments and spear heads.  You can reasonably deduce what the ape ate, how old it was before it died, how stressed it life was, and just information that can be obtained by modern day dentistry.  How though, can you justify treating this species to such a degree that it has been given?  How far can deductive reasoning go, and over-reaching fact assuming begins?  And maybe I'm just not reading enough into this... but I just want to discuss about this.

Again, if this goes past scientific discussion into theological cock strutting, I'm locking this thread faster than you can say, "Oh Momma!"

But don't you think that's the point?  IF, science isn't that absolute, then how can science absolutely prove or refute anything?  The point being, if science can't absolutely prove life wasn't created, then creation is just as valid a science.  Science, IS supposed to be the study of what was, is, (will be, we will leave to science fiction for now).  You take these scientists to task for assuming far too much with just a few bone fragments.  Isn't it even more assumption to discredit or discount creation when there is NO evidence to the contrary?  I mean for pity sake, there isn't even one freaking fossil.   How could there be, the "theory" is a primoridial pool, and that doesn't leave behind anything. 

So, are you locking down, because "theology" shouldn't mix with science, or because my science was too threatening to some people's assumption?

By fire, woman!  Must you spout off what exactly isn't beneficial for conversation?  Don't you know moderation?

I will not lock this thread unless it gets out of hand.  This is not a Creationism/ Intelligent Design Vs Darwinism thread!  Or the imperfection of science... or whatever have you.  It is just a discussion of objective scientific thought.

Again, does the Gigantopithecus have enough evidence for deductive reasoning on its life, or biological over-reaching?

EDIT:  By the way, I'm an evolutionary theist, old earth Creationist, what have you.  Science doesn't disprove or disallow but enriches theology.

ROFL, and APPARENTLY, it isn't "obective" to point out this little vulnerablity regarding scientic thought?  I applaud that you believe Science enriches theolgy, but you still miss the point.  YOu still want to separate it as theology, BUT IF what everybody concludes as science isn't defensible, and even worse, just "well everybody says so" then who isn't being objective?  I find it funny that something this simple and common sense outrages people.  It really points out a bigotry, because if it wasn't a bigotry, people wouldn't get so angry when the vulnerability to this bigotry is pointed out.  In short, you are still saying, anything that challenges the assumed origins of life is "theology" which is still a convenient way of dismissing any challenge.  When I'm pointing out CHALLENGE and competing theories are the very point of science, until one theory has been proved conclusive.  Sorry but with the origins of life, THAT HAS NEVER HAPPENED, and never WILL happen by our limited abilities, so how can one theory be dismissed as "theology" while another theory is "science?"  That's not science, that's zealotry.
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Offline Chaos

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #7 on: December 27, 2007, 09:22:49 AM »
valeyard,

We've asked repeatedly NOT to have a religious discussion in this PARTICULAR thread.

Kindly fuck off.

kkthxbye
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Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #8 on: December 27, 2007, 09:26:35 AM »
valeyard,

We've asked repeatedly NOT to have a religious discussion in this PARTICULAR thread.

Kindly fuck off.

kkthxbye

What "religion" have I quoted?  You make my point.  I'm not talking religion, I'm talking science.  My point is, how do you dismiss anything as not science, when you can't prove any of it?

Science, my dear whoever you are, science.  Science is a body of competing theories, until one theory is proven conclusive. IF, people are choosing one theory over another, without one shred of evidnence as to why then it is YOU that is having the religious discussion, not I.

Just because that bugs you, do not blame me.  I am the one open to the differing theories. 
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Offline torgosPizza

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #9 on: December 27, 2007, 10:20:06 AM »
What "religion" have I quoted?  You make my point.  I'm not talking religion, I'm talking science.  My point is, how do you dismiss anything as not science, when you can't prove any of it?

Science, my dear whoever you are, science.  Science is a body of competing theories, until one theory is proven conclusive. IF, people are choosing one theory over another, without one shred of evidnence as to why then it is YOU that is having the religious discussion, not I.

Just because that bugs you, do not blame me.  I am the one open to the differing theories. 

Well, you are talking religion.

Quote
if science can't absolutely prove life wasn't created, then creation is just as valid a science

Creation is not science. Look up the definition of the word science. There are no "competing theories" in science - it's more like, "Hey, this theory works better with the results we have observed, so yours is now obsolete." If you don't understand that then you shouldn't be discussing science.

Anyways, "Back on topic," says the Big Moderator.

There is a lot of inference being relied on with this particular case, but I think they take a lot more into account than JUST the fossils. Such as, the surrounding environment, other species known to have inhabited the area in the same era, and plus they have other fossils to compare it to.

The beauty of science, is that they may change the designation of the fossil when new information is discovered. (It's already happened at least once with the Gigantopithecus, from what I've read, and it may happen again. It doesn't mean science is wrong, it means that new evidence has come to light and that helps understand things better.

Personally, I think it's exciting when a new species is found, but when you consider that 99% of all species to ever exist are already extinct, it makes it feel like more of an exercise in futility. I would be more excited if they had found a complete skeleton, of course. (Or at least more of it.)


Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #10 on: December 27, 2007, 10:24:58 AM »
What "religion" have I quoted?  You make my point.  I'm not talking religion, I'm talking science.  My point is, how do you dismiss anything as not science, when you can't prove any of it?

Science, my dear whoever you are, science.  Science is a body of competing theories, until one theory is proven conclusive. IF, people are choosing one theory over another, without one shred of evidnence as to why then it is YOU that is having the religious discussion, not I.

Just because that bugs you, do not blame me.  I am the one open to the differing theories. 

Well, you are talking religion.

Quote
if science can't absolutely prove life wasn't created, then creation is just as valid a science

Creation is not science. Look up the definition of the word science. There are no "competing theories" in science - it's more like, "Hey, this theory works better with the results we have observed, so yours is now obsolete." If you don't understand that then you shouldn't be discussing science.

Anyways, "Back on topic," says the Big Moderator.


WHAT??????????????   ::)  There are no competing theories in science????????????????????  Where did you take science at???????   

I'm sorry but that is what science is about. 

The funny part is, you just confirmed what I said to be true, while trying to deny it.  That "Hey this theory works better with the results we have observed" is EXACTLY WHAT I SAID.  Science is a competing body of theories, until ONE THEORY IS PROVEN TRUE.

The problem is THERE HAS BEEN NO THEORY PROVEN TRUE on the origins of life.  So to dismiss one theory as "religion" and tag another theory science without that "they this theory works better with the results we have observed" boils down to self serving zelotry until there are observable results.

There aren't any for the orgings of life.  Nice try, but your attempt to dismiss one theory over another sans any evidnece still boils down to a whole lot of rationalization, and that isn't science.  But you can tell me what is science, when you don't rely on science yourself? 
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Offline torgosPizza

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #11 on: December 27, 2007, 10:29:31 AM »
Everyone, please ignore valeyard. She is biased and delusional. If we all don't respond to her, she will go away. Apparently her science is better than my science, and calling a religious theory science would make any self-respecting scientist, or even a college student majoring in a scientific field, get shaky with disgust. I should forward this thread over to my professor friend at Harvard and see if he agrees with your ludicrous comments.

Anyways, everyone feel free to not respond to her until she reads a book other than The Bible.

Like I said earlier, I'd like to see more of a skeleton before I get really excited.


Offline Reductio_ad_absurdum

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #12 on: December 27, 2007, 10:35:25 AM »
Torgo, you are right.  Creationism isn't a science... intelligent design is.  :P  Creationism is simply a philosophical view taken from information from the Bible and inferred to the world as a whole from no real means of evidence.  Intelligent Design is a viable scientific theory because it takes scientific principles into effect, follows the scientific method, and is published as a scientific theory.  Is it rightful that it can be deemed unscientific just because it is unorthodox?  Is ID really going to bring Creationism into the classroom when even the proponents of ID aren't necessarily creationists?

That is the beauty of science isn't it Torgo?  It is like one big investigative work that constantly changes based on the evidence... and for the better for it.  Problems come up when you take it out of that sphere, and try to mash it into a differently shaped peg.  Science is at it is, it should never be faith-based.
 
[I wrote this part below earlier and so its a wee bit out of date]

Amandagal, since you did bring it up, evolution is simply a tool.  A theory that explains a lot of things in nature, how it came to be, and how it might turn out.  However, people like Neo-darwinists turn it into a religion as bad as islamofascism.  It requires faith when you subscribe to the mentality that it is the only answer.  There is ultimately nothing wrong with that, but for relativists that many Neo-darwinist seem to be, that is highly contradictory.  As Chaos said, further information can solidify a theory, but when it first comes out there are many ways it can turn out, and they should know this.  The problem being that their own viewpoint acts as willful blinders.

It is a shame for anyone to have willful blinders.  That goes to all peoples, all religions, and all viewpoints.  One can be solid in beliefs, practice those beliefs, and live in peace with others.

Has there been DNA tests on Neaderthals to solidify that they are a separate species from us?

Oh and BBQ Platypus I know of textbooks  ::).  I've also read some scientific dissertation, though I tend to stop because it gives me headaches.  I just wanted a common place here to discuss things.

EDIT:  I wouldn't even have made this thread if there was a complete skeleton.  The absence of it brought the initial question to mind.
« Last Edit: December 27, 2007, 10:39:33 AM by Reductio_ad_absurdum »


Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2007, 10:40:18 AM »
Everyone, please ignore valeyard. She is biased and delusional. If we all don't respond to her, she will go away. Apparently her science is better than my science, and calling a religious theory science would make any self-respecting scientist, or even a college student majoring in a scientific field, get shaky with disgust. I should forward this thread over to my professor friend at Harvard and see if he agrees with your ludicrous comments.

Anyways, everyone feel free to not respond to her until she reads a book other than The Bible.

Like I said earlier, I'd like to see more of a skeleton before I get really excited.

ROFL, so the answer to a scienctific debate is close your eyes and ears and pretend it will go away?  What have I asked that is so unreasonable?  What have I pointed out that is so unreasonable?

If I an so delusional, then simply refute me with some evidence.  If you can't, then WHO is being delusional and religious?  I thought religion was faith inspite of evidence.  

What you are doing, is akin to saying I'm a heretic!  And thus I must be shunned because I won't conform to what everybody else thinks.  Don't you think that's akin to the Catholic Church excommunicating Galileo?

If we can't objectively discuss science without going bezerk because someone is pointing out a flaw in certain assumptions, then we are not discussing science.  Then it is YOU discussing theology.  

And if you think your professor can do any better than you, be my guest.  Do you think he also would suggest the shunning of heretics?  
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Offline valeyard

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Re: The Science Thread
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2007, 10:46:53 AM »
Torgo, you are right.  Creationism isn't a science... intelligent design is.  :P  Creationism is simply a philosophical view taken from information from the Bible and inferred to the world as a whole from no real means of evidence.  Intelligent Design is a viable scientific theory because it takes scientific principles into effect, follows the scientific method, and is published as a scientific theory.  Is it rightful that it can be deemed unscientific just because it is unorthodox?  Is ID really going to bring Creationism into the classroom when even the proponents of ID aren't necessarily creationists?

That is the beauty of science isn't it Torgo?  It is like one big investigative work that constantly changes based on the evidence... and for the better for it.  Problems come up when you take it out of that sphere, and try to mash it into a differently shaped peg.  Science is at it is, it should never be faith-based.
 
[I wrote this part below earlier and so its a wee bit out of date]

Amandagal, since you did bring it up, evolution is simply a tool.  A theory that explains a lot of things in nature, how it came to be, and how it might turn out.  However, people like Neo-darwinists turn it into a religion as bad as islamofascism.  It requires faith when you subscribe to the mentality that it is the only answer.  There is ultimately nothing wrong with that, but for relativists that many Neo-darwinist seem to be, that is highly contradictory.  As Chaos said, further information can solidify a theory, but when it first comes out there are many ways it can turn out, and they should know this.  The problem being that their own viewpoint acts as willful blinders.

It is a shame for anyone to have willful blinders.  That goes to all peoples, all religions, and all viewpoints.  One can be solid in beliefs, practice those beliefs, and live in peace with others.

Has there been DNA tests on Neaderthals to solidify that they are a separate species from us?

Oh and BBQ Platypus I know of textbooks  ::).  I've also read some scientific dissertation, though I tend to stop because it gives me headaches.  I just wanted a common place here to discuss things.

EDIT:  I wouldn't even have made this thread if there was a complete skeleton.  The absence of it brought the initial question to mind.

You simply said the same thing I said.

I have to disagree on one point.  You say intelligent design, I say creation.  That's you say tomato and I say tomato.  It's pure semantics.  Since they still boil down to someone had to have created it (and created is another word for design) it's still the same thing.

But the idea that I have to be shunned and ignored just because I have questioned the religion of darwinism, or what it really is, materialism, reveals the zealotry of what today is considered "science."  If it can't be questioned, (which is the same thing the global warming zealots are doing).  When science can't be questioned, then it isn't science.  It's zealotry.

Quote

NOTE:  the number one defintion of DESIGN

Quote

You say design, and I say pure semantics.
Are you my virgins?  I hope not!