You might have not heard his name, but you should have.
When faced with an important decision in life, a nifty trick is to get organized.
The genes that code sexual diversity in flowers.
Real-time evolution, what more proof do you need?
The exciting implication of this is that evolution can evolve to get better at evolving in exactly the same way that a neural network can learn to be a better problem solver with experience.
Charles Darwin’s monumental formulation of the theory of evolution has been overwhelmingly voted as the most influential and important academic book, ahead of works by Newton, Plato and Einstein. “Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur
While in South American during his 1830 expedition with the HMS Beagle, Charles Darwin came across the fossils of two peculiar hoofed species which he was unable to classify properly. One was Macrauchenia, which looked like a camel with the head of an ant eater, and the other was Toxodon which had the body of rhino, the head of a hippo and the teeth of a rodent. So, was the Macrauchenia related to the camel or the ant eater? Who was Toxodon’s closet cousin, the hippo or the rhino? Darwin was puzzled and to no avail concluded these were “perhaps one of the strangest animals ever discovered”. But Darwin didn’t have the tools we have today. Now, using a ground breaking technique researchers have sequenced the collagen of a myriad of South American mammals, including Darwin’s ‘strangest animals’ and finally found their real taxonomy.
While he was only 22 years of age, Charles Darwin sailed on the ship H.M.S. Beagle to the Galapagos Island on a trip that would later inspire him to write the theory of evolution. Paramount to his evolutionary theories was his study of finches. He identified 13 different species differentiated by beak size, and correctly concluded that the different beaks were adaptations to different diets available among the islands. This was a powerful example of divergent evolution – varieties which diverge from some original species. For instance, domestic dogs from wolves. One powerful driver of divergent evolution is physical isolation. Each left to its own island, Darwin’s finches evolved specialized traits. On California’s Santa Cruz Island, however, a most peculiar finding was made. Katie Langin, a biologist at Colorado State University, discovered two varieties belonging to the same species (Aphelocoma californica or the Scrub Jay) which diverged despite the absence of a physical barrier. Isolation drives speciation, but not in this case. Granted, the two Scrub Jay populations are essentially the same species. And yet, this is still definitely very, very weird. And we’re only beginning to understand what’s happening.
Charle’s Darwin’s original notes during which he first scribbled down the ideas which led to evolution have been digitized and published online by Cambridge University. Over 12,000 high-res images have been published online – including the ones with the pages where he actually coins the term ‘natural selection’. “One may say there is a force like a hundred thousand wedges
Life on Earth started out in a ‘small little pond’, just like Darwin, the father of evolution, proposed more than 140 years ago, according to a provocative new study. According to this study, the primordial cells were ‘created’ (though germinated would be a better word) in pools of condensed vapor which appeared as a result of hot water or steam
In a paper published in the journal Nature, Chinese paleontologists have detailed their impressions on the finding of a chicken-sized feathered dinosaur which might lead to a total reconsideration of the origin of birds on Earth. In 1861, just two years after Darwin published his infamous Origin of Species, scientists unearthed the fossils of Archaeopteryx, hailed to this day as
A patrol by park rangers and an Ecuador navy ship made the largest shark seizure in the country’s history, when they detained a fishing vessel as it was casting its nets 20 miles inside the Galapagos Marine Reserve. On board they found 357 dead sharks. The government news agency says criminal proceedings will be pursued against the crew of the
In a recent act that just baffles my mind, Tennesee, not one of the US brightest states, has passed a bill that makes it easier for virtually any creationist teacher to include religion in science class. They did this by including mythology in science classes to promote critical thinking. Now I wonder, do you think there’ll be discussions about the
A great Fora TV discussion about the continued evolution of our species.