Twitter question time

Yes! There is a possible happy combination of Dawkins and Twitter, and earlier today he found it. This is what the two of them were always supposed to be doing. This is how to use Twitter if you’re a great science communicator.

Richard Dawkins @RichardDawkins · 11h
If our planet had been shrouded in perpetual fog, would eyes have evolved? In the sea, why not? But on land, what other sense organs?

Does evolution rely upon digital genetics? Could there be an analogue genetics? What features of life have to be true all over the universe?

Stuart Kauffman’s thought experiment: If evolution could be re-run 1000 times, would certain patterns predictably recur? Humanoids?

Why hasn’t biological (as opposed to technological) evolution given rise to sense organs and transmitters in radio frequencies?

Why do nervous systems use slow, chemically mediated pulses of voltage change rather than fast electric currents along wires?

My questions today about possible life forms are all questions that excite my sincere curiosity. Hope physicists might join in.

Why no biological wheels? Because no paved surfaces? Or because nerves & blood vessels would get twisted around axles?

“Why don’t animals have wheels?” Good little (anonymous) lecture here:

Why do cells have the complete genome instead of just the part that’s needed for their function? Liver cells have muscle-making genes etc.

Why do cave-dwellers lose their eyes? They’re useless, but are they harmful? Costly to make? Or eroded by rain of uncorrected mutations?

The questions are interesting in themselves and as questions that an experienced scientist asks. They’re notations, and notations are interesting.

I keep saying Twitter isn’t as worthless as many people say; once you get the hang of it it can be very good for certain things. This is one of them.


  1. Al Dente says

    Nobody doubts that Dawkins is a knowledgeable biologist. It’s when he strays from biology (and basic atheism) that he gets in trouble.

  2. Chris P says

    Why does Dawkins have to “stay in his lane” or not “stray from biology”. Why are you singling him out when clearly others fall into the same trap. Nobody is perfect. Others have gone done some very dubious alleys and not been called on it.


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