Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Designing iterated

Uncommondescent has a list of arguments they don't want commenters to use. One of these is:

Who Designed the Designer

This argument points out that, by inferring a designer from complexity in machines, the designer must also be complexity. Why? Well just because it seems like he/she/it would. This of course then plunges into an infinite loop of who designed the designer. This infinite loop makes Intelligent Design somehow impossible. The really weird part is the argument is broadcast to us using a computer that was the result of intelligent design. Intelligent design does not speak to the nature of designers anymore than Darwin’s theory speaks to the origin of matter.

More properly, the argument is that it takes (by ID's definition) intelligence to build complexity (well, specified complexity, at least). Idists would be foolish to suggest that intelligence is not complex. So, the question remains: how did the designer become complex? Dembski et al often claim that intelligence is non-material - so maybe non-complex non-material stuff can design complex material stuff? If the designer would not even have to be complex, then we would have complexity arising from non-complexity - which is pretty much what evolution (and abiogenesis) claims anyway. So why the need for ID?

This issue can be debated back and forth - and it should be!


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