Intelligent Reasoning

Promoting, advancing and defending Intelligent Design via data, logic and Intelligent Reasoning and exposing the theory of evolution as the nonsense it is. I also educate evotards about ID and the theory of evolution one tard at a time and sometimes in groups

Saturday, February 03, 2007

How NOT to Argue Against ID- by AiGuy

Over in a thread on the ARN discussion board, see HERE?, someone named Glurk asked about infinite regress as in who/ what designed the designer. Someone who goes by "AiGuy" provided what he thinks is a valid answer that refutes ID. However on closer inspection it does nothing but expose AiGuy's ID ignorance. The following is AiGuy's response which will be followed by my assessment:

According to ID, the regress is irrelevant because (1) scientific theories need not consider ultimate cause, and (2) intelligence can be detected without regard to the origin of that intelligence. The second argument is both crucial to ID and completely contradicts ID's core tenets, as can be illustrated by considering artificial intelligence.

Clearly computers generate CSI, which in ID's view should qualify them as being intelligent. But if computers - which operate purely according to stochastic processes - are intelligent, then ID's arguments against evolution fail, since then the stochastic processes of evolution must be capable of intelligence (creating CSI) as well.

ID's response is that the CSI generated by computers actually comes from the human programmer, rather than intrinsically from the computer itself. But this argument violates ID's argument (2): If we can detect intelligence without regard to its origin, then the CSI generation we see from computers must signify that computers have bona-fide intelligence, no matter what the source of that intelligence. Simply because some other intelligent designer designed computers is no reason to reject that the computer is intelligent per se, any more than imagining that simply because human beings were themselves designed by some Designer would mean that humans are not intelligent!

So there is simply no consistent way to interpret ID's claims at all. If chance and necessity is capable of intelligence, then ID's arguments against evolution fail. If chance and necessity is incapable of intelligence, then we must explain how computers manage to create CSI. If we deny that computers generate CSI because they are designed by people, then we must by the same token deny that humans generate CSI if they are themselves designed by a Designer.

I've made these and related points here many times. I gave up on getting any salient responses on this board, so I wrote to Dembski and other folks at the DI. Dembski actually answered, and resorted to suggesting that humans too may be "merely conduits for preexisting CSI"! But the implication - that humans are not really intelligent any more than computers are - is completely contrary to what virtually all ID supporters wish to believe.

So ID's arguments crumble in a mass of contradiction, but continue to attract uncritical thinkers - those who are not interested in actually evaluating what "intelligence" is supposed to mean, and find these arguments too difficult and too picky.


According to IDists the regress is irrelevant for the reasons provided in the following essay:

Who Designed the Designer

Next it is that design can be detected without regard as to the origin of the designer.

Computers can't generate anything without the aid of an external intelligent agency. It took intelligent agencies to build and program computers. Therefore anything a computer outputs is an extension of their intelligence.

Next it is ID's position that the origin of CSI requires an intelligence.

Next computers do NOT "operate purely according to stochastic processes". Computers operate purly according to the programs and hardware an intelligent agency provided.

When computers start making humans I will agree with AiGuy in that "humans are not really intelligent any more than humans are"- that ia just a stupid inference and an inference only an ardent anti-IDist would make.

Next we should ask AiGuy what type of computer generated CSI are we observing (in his scenario). We know to output something a computer needs more man-made peripherals.

That designing agencies can design something that appears to generate CSI does nothing to the design inference. All CSI generated by the computer can be traced back to it which can be traced back to the designing agencies. And if we can't trace it back to the computer then who cares? AiGuy's point is moot.

Also ID does NOT argue against evolution. ID argues against the blind watchmaker having sole dominion over it. And you have been told how computers generate CSI. But all you have done is to ignore what you have been told and post your nonsense anyway.

Suggested reading for AiGuy- "Why is a Fly Not a Horse?"- specifically chapter VIII "I can only tell you what I already know".

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