Information, Specified Complexity and the Explanatory Filter

Air Conditioning Vent Filter

On this episode of ID the Future, we hear the third and final portion of a talk given at the 2020 Dallas Science and Faith conference. Daniel Reeves, education outreach coordinator at Discovery Institute, rounds out his extended explanation of intelligent design theory. Far from being “Gee whiz that’s complicated; it must be designed!,” the theory relies on well-defined concepts such as specified complexity and an explanatory filter that allows one to distinguish designed events from either chance, necessity, or a combination of the two. The key in the molecular biological realm: detecting functional information.



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Durston on Experimental, Inferential, and Fantasy Science — Pt. 2

On this episode of ID the Future, biophysicist and philosopher Kirk Durston continue their discussion of three types of science: (1) experimental science, (2) inferential science, and (3) fantasy science. In this second of three episodes, Durston recaps the three types but focuses on inferential science. He explains how it involves, in the historical sciences, abductive reasoning (inference to the best explanation), and he explains how such reasoning can be used as we consider the best explanation for the origin of biological information, and in such a way that it is rooted in observation.



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Durston on Experimental, Inferential, and Fantasy Science — Pt. 1

On this episode of ID the Future, biophysicist and philosopher Kirk Durston discusses his recent article series about three types of science — (1) experimental science, which is generally very trustworthy, with some exceptions; (2) inferential science, which can be trustworthy but often takes huge leaps into the doubtable and dodgy; and (3) fantasy science, which is essentially science fiction masquerading as actual science.

In this first of three episodes, Durston focuses on experimental science. Such science is, at its best, reproducible and verifiable. Durston says he has yet to find a true conflict between experimental, reproducible scientific observations and his religious faith. The contradictions he encountered were all between his faith and the inferences that some scientists were drawing from experimental science. Durston and host Andrew McDiarmid then move into a discussion of the reproducibility crisis in experimental science. As Durston explains, without a healthy scientific culture and the right incentives, experimental science can quickly fall into disrepair.



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