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Re: "Evolution" in sci-fi
Date: 5/31/13 8:32 pm
In Response To: "Evolution" in sci-fi (Dervish)

: There's a lovely article on i09 today about the nonsensical ways that
: "evolution" works in sci-fi. 343's Halo fiction has been
: particularly guilty of this as of late (certainly 1, 2, 3, 4, 7 and 10 in
: that article), and it's been driving me up the wall.

: A few examples: -Librarian can apparently plan the course of evolution over
: many generations. There is in fact no roadmap to evolution, and no way for
: there to be one without invoking divine power. Populations of organisms
: change over time in response to their environment, with characteristics
: that improve survival being more likely to be passed down. But since
: populations are adapted for their specific environmental circumstances,
: there is no such thing as being higher or lower evolved. There is only
: ideal adaptation to a particular environment, and environments change all
: the time. So unless Librarian is manipulating climate conditions on Earth
: or something, her guiding of evolution is nonsensical. I certainly don't
: see how "guiding" evolution would let her plant the idea to
: invent Mjolnir and Cortana, which she implies in Halo 4.

I have mixed feelings about this. In reality it MAY be possible. Keep in mind that Humans were around when the Librarian was around. She had medical records of billions of humans at her disposal. And those records/samples were used to repopulate Earth after the rings' activation. So she would have the ability to plant cells and recode a certain line of humans to do create what she needed. Could she determine exactly when that would be? Not likely. But based off how fast her generation's humans advanced, then she could give it a good guess. But she never planned a certain time for everything to happen. She just planted the seed and let Humans go about their lives until it did happen. After all, only Humans could release the Flood and/or the Didact. It'll help explain the beliefs of reincarnation and Daja-Vus.

: -Librarian can "accelerate" the Chief's evolutionary journey. I
: don't know what an evolutionary journey is, but evolutionary changes do
: not occur on the level of an individual within their
: lifetime...incremental changes that prove beneficial are passed on to
: offspring. Changing something in the Chief instantly to make him immune to
: the Composer isn't biology, it's magic.

This goes back to what I said above. With knowledge of how the Composer works as well as how Human geometry works, she could in deed edit or plant code into humans to save them when the time came. Sadly, Master Chief was the only one her hologram encountered and thus he was the only one she could activate it for. Later she encountered Dr. Halsey and I'm sure she's immune to it now as well.

: -All the ancestral humans are white dudes, both in Legends and the Halo 4
: terminals. The archaeological record clearly shows that humans originated
: in Africa, and that for most of the species' history, all humans would
: have looked like people of African origin. Lighter skin and fuzzy faces
: are relatively recent adaptations of populations that migrated to northern
: Europe. Portraying ancestral/original humans as white doesn't just raise
: all sorts of problematic social concerns, it's straight-up historically
: wrong.

Okay, this is grasping for straws from the author here. Just because "white" guys are all we see in the videos, it in no way says that there were only white people at the time. And keep in mind that the Didact "de-evolved" the humans that were currently present. That just means that he blocked their memories and part of the brain usage. We see him and the Librarian standing among them for crying out loud. BEFORE the rings were activated no less. And WHO says that early humans were all from Africa? There really is no solid proof of this anywhere in our history. Just proof that MANY traveled through Africa while others settled there. BTW, living in a location does NOT determine your race nor skin color. Staying outside or inside does. Just to use a simple example. There are plenty of people living in the North with dark skin. They spend much of their time indoors due to the cold. And when they do go outside, they are fully covered, thus making it impossible for the fun to effect the color of their skin outside of their face and hands.

: -Halsey calls spartans "humanity's next step, our destiny as a
: species." This nearly ruins the otherwise awesome opening scene to
: Halo 4 for me, because it means absolutely nothing and makes Halsey sound
: like a crazy Dr. Science. The spartans were augmented, but if Halsey is
: implying they could somehow pass that augmentation to offspring, she's
: fallen off the Lamarckian cliff. Or does she think that all humans in
: the future should be augmented? Her attitude toward the Spartan IVs later
: on would suggest otherwise. Basically, this line is dumb.

I believe she was speaking in terms of Human Military strategy and thinking. Spartan 3s/4s are not raised from child hood to be fighters and to thus do not have the luxury of thinking on their feet as fast as Spartan 2s. Spartan 4s are basically just Spartan 1s with armor and MANY more argumentations. She sees them as a step backwards in what she was trying to achieve. She's mostly just mad that the Spartan 3s were not hand picked and that her program was stolen from her. By her own Spartans no less.

: Evolution is a well-established fact of nature, but politicization and
: misrepresentation mean that less than half of Americans accept that it
: exists, and fewer understand how it works. And understanding evolution is
: important not only to understand ourselves and world around us, but to
: understand important issues like medicine, disease, genetically-modified
: food, etc. So when we have popular entertainment throwing around the term
: "evolution" in a wanton way that has no bearing on the real
: biological process, it only confounds the problem. *Full disclosure: I'm a
: science teacher, and it's important to me that people have some basic
: science literacy.*

"Evolution" is NOT a "well-established fact of nature" at all. That is if you are speaking of cross species evolving. There is no evidence of it. Scientist love to take tiny bone fragments (like just a tooth) and create a new creature from it and claim it to have existed with false documents and reports. Saying there are more white moths then black moths during the winter because they evolved and learned to change their color is just flat out stupid. They didn't evolve. The black moths simply stood out against the snow and ice, and therefore were picked off first by birds, lizards, and mammals. That's like saying the woodpecker evolved to..well peck wood at high speeds as they do. Saying so is the same as Lamarckian cliff as well. That is a TON of force being applied to the bird's head. By the time he learned to do it he'll either be too old to do it or dead before he learned how to. And don't get me started on a woodpecker's tongue.

The ONLY "evolution" I believe in is the change of a species to it's own. Wolf to Pitbull, Lion to house Cat. Lizard to different lizard colors (because those that stood out were eaten). NOT Dinosaur to Chicken, or Monkey to Human. Just because there are similarities between species, that does NOT mean they are related nor that they came from one another.

: 343, I beg of you, if you want these plot contrivances to happen, please call
: them magic, not evolution. But I think you can do better, regardless.

Magic? No cause that don't exist. Then again neither do argumented 8 foot Spartans and 4 foot tank wearing aliens. Evolution? No because it wouldn't fit the true meaning of it. If anything, I believe it should be called Technological Science. The science of rewriting the human brain cells to hold data and pass it along until needed. Be it the thought of attaching a key to a kite to discover electrical currents, or how to to design Mjolnir armor and digitally clone one's brain into a A.I.

Messages In This Thread

"Evolution" in sci-fiDervish5/31/13 3:29 pm
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fipadraig085/31/13 4:49 pm
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiDervish5/31/13 6:05 pm
                 It's not sci-fi, it's the Victorians.Leviathan6/1/13 11:48 am
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiscarab5/31/13 7:57 pm
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiQuirel5/31/13 10:24 pm
                 Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiGeneral Vagueness6/1/13 2:20 am
                 Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiscarab6/1/13 4:17 am
                       Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiQuirel6/3/13 1:33 am
                             Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiCHa0s6/4/13 2:43 am
                                   Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiGeneral Vagueness6/6/13 12:15 am
                                         Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiGeneral Vagueness6/6/13 12:40 am
                       Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiGeneral Vagueness6/5/13 11:24 pm
     Agreed *NM*RC Master5/31/13 7:59 pm
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiscarab5/31/13 8:03 pm
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiSEspider5/31/13 8:41 pm
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiSEspider5/31/13 8:32 pm
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiStephen L. (SoundEffect)5/31/13 8:50 pm
                 This *NM*CHa0s6/1/13 11:32 am
                 Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiCody Miller6/2/13 4:24 pm
                       Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiStephen L. (SoundEffect)6/2/13 4:47 pm
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiDervish5/31/13 9:55 pm
           Wow...RC Master6/1/13 9:13 am
                 Re: Wow...scarab6/1/13 11:03 am
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fithebruce06/3/13 11:40 am
                 Smells like a logical fallacyscarab6/3/13 4:36 pm
                       Re: Smells like a logical fallacyscarab6/3/13 5:12 pm
                             Re: Smells like a logical fallacyMacGyver106/3/13 5:58 pm
                       Re: Smells like a logical fallacythebruce06/3/13 6:00 pm
                             Re: Smells like a logical fallacyuberfoop6/3/13 6:07 pm
                                   Re: Smells like a logical fallacythebruce06/3/13 8:08 pm
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiQuirel5/31/13 11:10 pm
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiAndrewSS026/1/13 4:43 am
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fi *NM*AndrewSS026/1/13 4:49 am
           Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiscarab6/1/13 5:52 am
     Re: "Evolution" in sci-fiCHa0s6/1/13 12:06 pm
     I would like to emphasize the "sci-fi"serpx6/1/13 12:44 pm
           This :) *NM*thebruce06/3/13 11:52 am
           Re: I would like to emphasize the "sci-fi"Quirel6/4/13 1:35 am
                 Re: I would like to emphasize the "sci-fi"scarab6/4/13 1:41 pm
     A couple of partial defensesArithmomaniac6/2/13 1:02 pm
           Re: A couple of partial defensesRC Master6/2/13 4:00 pm
                 Re: A couple of partial defensesCody Miller6/2/13 4:19 pm
                 Re: A couple of partial defensesArithmomaniac6/2/13 7:38 pm
           Re: A couple of partial defensesCody Miller6/2/13 4:17 pm
                 Re: A couple of partial defensesGrimmire6/4/13 6:22 am
                       Re: A couple of partial defensesthebruce06/4/13 9:44 am
                       Re: A couple of partial defensesGeneral Vagueness6/6/13 12:38 am
     He added his email in the genome?!?CHa0s6/5/13 11:50 am

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