Is it time to put natural selection in its place?
Jello Biafra once famously wrote that "If evolution is outlawed, only outlaws will evolve.
" But while it likely comes as no surprise to specialists working in the field or to those who've been following developments in evolutionary biology closely, there's an emerging view among experts that Darwin's view of natural selection as the primary driver of speciation and evolutionary change may be incorrect or at least drastically overstated. It's long been understood that non-adaptive evolutionary mechanisms like "genetic drift
" and random mutation also play non-trivial roles in evolutionary processes, but a recent study
(link to abstract with full-text PDF available) casts new doubts on the primary role of natural selection, finding that "Neutral models, in which genetic change arises through random variation without fitness differences have proven remarkably successful in describing observed patterns of biodiversity." [more inside]
posted by saulgoodman
on Mar 28, 2013 -
"Entering into one of the fiercest competitions in existence, I found art."
Sixteen mushers. 120 dogs. An adventure across one of the longest mushing trails in the world: the Beringia, a dog sled race stretching 683 miles across eastern Russia. Twilight on the Tundra [more inside]
posted by zarq
on Nov 28, 2012 -
"To aid the national security community in imagining contemporary threats, the Australian Security Research Centre (ASRC) is organising Australia’s Security Nightmares: The National Security Short Story Competition
. The competition aims to produce a set of short stories that will contribute to a better conception of possible future threats and help defence, intelligence services, emergency managers, health agencies and other public, private and non-government organisations to be better prepared." (via
posted by vidur
on Sep 12, 2012 -
Create a game. The game can be of any theme or genre you desire, but there is one restriction: You're creating a 'new classic,' like Chess, Tag or card games. So, create a game to be enjoyed by generations of players for a thousand years. Prize:
$1,000 to the winning entrant, to be announced and awarded January 1, 2012." Daniel Solis
' Thousand-Year Game Design Challenge
. [more inside]
posted by bayani
on May 23, 2011 -
PBS's excellent weekly news magazine, Need to Know
why European broadband speeds are racing ahead of the USA. Britain now has 400 broadband suppliers with service available for as little as $6/month. Bonus: Harvard's Berkman Center reports
on broadband supply trends around the world.
posted by anigbrowl
on May 13, 2011 -
"The Szpilman Award
is awarded to works that exist only for a moment or a short period of time. The purpose of the award is to promote such works whose forms consist of ephemeral situations." This years winner is Treebute to Yogya
. The organisers also maintain a blog
and an encyclopædia
of ephemeral works.
posted by unliteral
on Jan 10, 2011 -
The Gardens will put in place a pervasive garden ambience and quality living environment from which Singapore's downtown will rise, and steer Singapore to the forefront of the world's leading global cities. (via)
posted by Joe Beese
on Oct 5, 2009 -
Ubuntu 8.04's Hardy Heron
has recently perched on millions of desktops worldwide, but what does the future look like for the darling of the open source world? Now entering a new 2-year art developent cycle
, Ubuntu's continuing quest
for "pure, unadulterated, raw, visceral, lustful, shallow, skin deep beauty"
has begun again in earnest. Bleeding edge desktop effects [youtube, music]
are already creeping into the official distribution and the community is eagerly awaiting the new graphical look, promised as a ground-up re-imagination in the next release, Intrepid Ibex
. Watch this space
posted by cowbellemoo
on Apr 28, 2008 -