Articles

Photo by Vivek Doshi

Bringing Past Articles Current to 2020: Butterflies, Hummingbirds, More

Here are items reported in 2019 that have made news in 2020: more on butterflies, hummingbirds, and the Cambrian explosion. Structural Color in Butterflies Past articles at Evolution News have discussed the phenomenon of structural color, in which colors are intensified not by pigments but by optics. In a variety of animals, light interference from microscopic ridges and other structures can intensify and Read More ›

Sad girl pupil trying to solve an example. Schoolgirl stands with her forehead on the blackboard
Sad girl pupil trying to solve an example. Schoolgirl stands with her forehead on the blackboard.

We Are Failing Our Children

n 1983, the famous report, “A Nation at Risk” concluded that our country was failing to effectively educate our children. The authors were so critical of our schools that the preamble of the report summarized their findings by saying that; “if an unfriendly foreign power had imposed our schools upon us, we would have considered it an act of war.” That was 1983. In 1991, President George H.W. Bush held an education summit, called “Goals 2000.” Bill Clinton was the chair of that summit. After days of deliberation, another report was issued stating that, “by 2000, all children will enter school ready to learn and 90% of our children will graduate from high school.” Many other goals were listed, none of which were achieved. In 2001, President George W. Bush and Congress passed a bill called the, “No Child Left Behind Act.” This legislation was designed improve accountability and to help schools meet the needs of every student. It failed to make any meaningful difference in student performance. Read More ›
Predator Type Drone 3D artwork

A Moral Argument for Killer Robots: Why America’s Military Needs to Continue Development of Lethal AI

Doomsday headlines warn that the age of “killer robots” is upon us, and that new military technologies based on artificial intelligence (AI) will lead to the annihilation of the human race. In his new, short book The Case for Killer Robots: Why America’s Military Needs to Continue Development of Lethal AI (Discovery Institute Press 2020), artificial intelligence expert Robert J. Marks investigates the potential military use of lethal AI and examines the practical and ethical challenges. Dr. Marks directs the Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence at Discovery Institute, and he is a Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Baylor University. Marks also heads up the Center’s daily news website, Mind Matters News and hosts the Mind Matters Podcast. This short monograph is published in conjunction with the Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence and the Center is making if freely available as a digital book at the Mind Matters website. Physical copies are available through Amazon.com. “Marks makes a lucid and compelling case that we have a moral obligation to develop lethal AI,” said Jay Richards, philosopher and author, The Human Ad-vantage: The Future of American Work in an Age of Smart Machines. “He also reminds us that moral questions apply, not to the tools that we use to protect ourself, but to how we use them when war becomes a necessity.” Read More ›

Discovery Institute Announces New Fellow Tom Shakely Joining its Center on Human Exceptionalism

Discovery Institute is pleased to announce Tom Shakely , who serves as Chief Engagement Officer at Americans United for Life, has joined the Institute’s Center on Human Exceptionalism as a Research Fellow where he will focus on human dignity, human rights, and law and policy. Read More ›
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Still of David Gelernter on Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson via YouTube

#1 of Our Top Stories of 2019: Informed by Discovery Authors, Yale’s David Gelernter Rejects Darwinism

This is important. Yale University computer scientist David Gelernter is a polymath, a brilliant writer, artist, and thinker. Famed both for his specific scientific expertise, and for his cultural, political, and historical reflections, he’s also now a confessed Darwin skeptic. More than a skeptic really. In a wonderful essay in the new issue of The Claremont Review of Books, “Giving Up Darwin,” he credits reading Stephen Meyer’s book Darwin’s Doubt as the primary cause of his rejecting neo-Darwinian evolution, a “brilliant and beautiful scientific theory” but one that’s now been overtaken by science. Read More ›
Photo by John Moeses Bauan

Christopher Rufo Featured in WORLD Magazine Story on Tiny Houses

Seattle plans to stop funding another tiny house village for the homeless after months of fighting with the property’s managers. It will be the second time the city has closed down a tiny house development. Northlake Village, one of nine tiny house villages the city has built since 2015, opened in March 2018. A nonprofit group called the Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) managed it and subcontracted with Nickelsville, an activist organization of homeless and formerly homeless people. Sharon Lee, LIHI executive director, said Nickelsville did not make residents look for permanent housing or work with a case manager. They also used evictions “arbitrarily and unjustly made people homeless again,” Lee said. Tension grew, and in April, Nickelsville refused to allow LIHI or city staff on the property. They closed the gates with padlocks and posted signs telling the residents working security to keep LIHI or city staff out. In September, the city gave LIHI an Oct. 7 deadline to enroll residents in the city’s Homeless Management Information System. LIHI failed to comply, blaming Nickelsville for not cooperating. Read More ›
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Can’t Live With Them, Can’t Live Without Them

When frustrated by election results, it’s useful to remember why it’s hard to live with politicians but even harder to live without them. Bruce K. Chapman’s Politicians: The Worst Kind of People to Run the Government, Except for All the Others offers warm wit seasoned with some sharp-edged anecdotes. He reminds us that “a good political life, in the spirit of the Constitution, aims at a ‘more perfect union,’ not a perfect one.” Read More ›
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Steve Meyer’s 2019 End of Year Message

Steve Meyer, Director of the Center for Science and Culture at Discovery Institute, gives an end of year thank you to our supporters, reviews the exciting progress made in 2019, and even makes an announcement about his next book.

Like Steve Meyer, you understand the importance of ideas to the future of our culture. And you understand how investing in ideas like intelligent design can change lives. Will you help us change more lives in 2020?

Read More ›
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Compassion with Results

The purpose of this paper is to provide a roadmap for immediate impact for American cities and counties on the issue of homelessness. While the long-term goals for subsidized and permanent supportive housing are necessary components of public policy, we believe these plans must be supplemented with the short-term objectives that will deliver immediate results to the citizens, families, and homeless individuals across the country. Read More ›
School

Why Only One Type of School?

A fascinating new micro school has been making significant strides in Arizona. Prenda is like the Splenda of schooling. An alternative to the traditional government-run school. What’s different about this new method of schooling? For starters it is placed in the homes, offices, or studios of the coaches or mentors. This not only shifts the old classroom setting, desks lined up facing the front of the classroom. It also eliminates the need for specific degrees or credentials for those who are willing to connect with young people. There is a valid concern about the qualifications of those doing the teaching. Not everyone is qualified to teach. However, the elimination of certifications opens the door for very skilled workers in fields outside of education. What else is different? The three-year range in school composition. For example, a child in second grade can work with those in fourth grade. There are no age restrictions. Rather, the learning readiness of the child determines where they are placed. One might extend this principle even further. Why should a third grader not be placed with eight graders if he or she can read at that level? Read More ›