Biological Specification (Dembski CSI) and My explanation of CSI
Biological specification always refers to function. An organism is a functional system comprising many functional subsystems. In virtue of their function, these systems embody patterns that are objectively given and can be identified independently of the systems that embody them. Hence these systems are specified in the same sense required by the complexity-specification criterion (see sections 1.3 and 2.5). The specification of organisms can be crashed out in any number of ways. Arno Wouters cashes it out globally in terms of the viability of whole organisms. Michael Behe cashes it out in terms of minimal function of biochemical systems.- Wm. Dembski page 148 of NFL
In the preceding and proceeding paragraphs William Dembski makes it clear that biological specification is CSI- complex specified information.
In the paper "The origin of biological information and the higher taxonomic categories", Stephen C. Meyer wrote:
Dembski (2002) has used the term “complex specified information” (CSI) as a synonym for “specified complexity” to help distinguish functional biological information from mere Shannon information--that is, specified complexity from mere complexity. This review will use this term as well.
In order to be a candidate for natural selection a system must have minimal function: the ability to accomplish a task in physically realistic circumstances.- M. Behe page 45 of “Darwin’s Black Box”
He goes on to say:
Irreducibly complex systems are nasty roadblocks for Darwinian evolution; the need for minimal function greatly exacerbates the dilemma. – page 46
IC- A system performing a given basic function is irreducibly complex if it includes a set of well-matched, mutually interacting, non-arbitrarily individuated parts such that each part in the set is indispensable to maintaining the system’s basic, and therefore original, function. The set of these indispensable parts is known as the irreducible core of the system. Page 285 NFL
Numerous and Diverse Parts If the irreducible core of an IC system consists of one or only a few parts, there may be no insuperable obstacle to the Darwinian mechanism explaining how that system arose in one fell swoop. But as the number of indispensable well-fitted, mutually interacting,, non-arbitrarily individuated parts increases in number & diversity, there is no possibility of the Darwinian mechanism achieving that system in one fell swoop. Page 287
Minimal Complexity and Function Given an IC system with numerous & diverse parts in its core, the Darwinian mechanism must produce it gradually. But if the system needs to operate at a certain minimal level of function before it can be of any use to the organism & if to achieve that level of function it requires a certain minimal level of complexity already possessed by the irreducible core, the Darwinian mechanism has no functional intermediates to exploit. Page 287
What I said about CSI:
What is complex specified information (CSI)?
CSI & specified complexity are basically the same thing. CSI can be understood as the convergence of physical information, for example the hardware of a computer and conceptual information, for example the software that allows the computer to perform a function, such as an operating system with application programs.
Let’s see, in order for the hardware (inside a computer) to achieve a minimal function it indeed requires the proper software- just try running a computer without it.
In biology the physical information would be the components that make up an organism (arms, legs, body, head, internal organs and systems) as well as the organism itself. The conceptual information is what allows that organism to use its components and to be alive. After all a dead organism still has the same components. However it can no longer control them.
Again without the command and control a bacterial flagellum does not achieve minimal functionality:
The bacterial flagellum- It is a physical part. The physical information is the specific arrangement of amino acid sequences required, as well as their configuration- the “propeller” filament is comprised of more than 20,000 subunits of the flagellin protein FLiC; The three ring proteins (Flgh, I, and F) are present in about 26 subunits each; The proximal rod requires 6 subunits, FliE 9 subunits, and FliP about 5 subunits; the distal rod consists of about 25 subunits; the hook (or U-joint) consists of about 130 subunits of FlgE . The conceptual information is that which allows for its assembly, i.e. the assembly instructions, as well as for the operation, i.e. the speed and direction of rotation. The operation requires communication, which would also have to be considered, ie more CSI is required for that.
Given tha above can anyone tell me how my usage is wrong?
On another note-
Another IDist, CJYman posted the following:
If it is Shannon information, not algorithmically compressible, and can be processed by an information processor into a separate functional system, then it is complex specified information.