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lord_casek

"The DNA Code" - New Research Shows Life Hardwired in the Universe

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A recent mathematical analysis says that life as we know it is written into the laws of reality. DNA is built from a set of twenty amino acids - the first ten of those can create simple prebiotic life, and now it seems that those ten are thermodynamically destined to occur wherever they can.For those unfamiliar with thermodynamics, it's the Big Brother of all energy equations and science itself. You can apply quantum mechanics at certain scales, and Newtonian mechanics work at the right speeds, but if Thermodynamics says something then everyone listens. An energy analysis by Professors Pudritz and Higgs of McMaster University shows that the first ten amino acids are likely to form at relatively low temperatures and pressures, and the calculated odds of formation match the concentrations of these life-chemicals found in meteorite samples.

 

They also match those in simulations of early Earth, and most critically, those simulations were performed by other people. The implications are staggering: good news for anyone worried about how we're alone, and bad news for anyone who demands some kind of "Designer" to put life together - it seems that physics can assemble the organic jigsaw all by itself, thank you very much, and has probably done so throughout space since the beginning of everything.

The study indicates that you don't need a miracle to arrive at the chemical cocktail for early life, just a decently large asteroid with the right components. That's all. The entire universe could be stuffed with life, from the earliest prebiotic protein-a-likes to fully DNAed descendants. The path from one to the other is long, but we've had thirteen and a half billion years so far and it's happened at least once.

The other ten amino acids aren't as easy to form, but they'll still turn up - and the process of "stepwise evolution" means that once the simpler systems work, they can grab the rarer "epic drops" of more sophisticated chemicals as they occur - kind of a World of Lifecraft except you literally get a life when you play. And once even the most sophisticated structure is part of a replicating organism, there's plenty to go round.

Posted by Luke McKinney.

 

 

 

 

http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2009/07/the-dna-code-new-research-show-life-hardwired-in-universe.html

 

 

 

I disagree with the "not needing a miracle", seeing as how the creation of the universe is itself a miracle.

One tiny speck of energy erupting with matter that blasts out in all directions forming all that exists is pretty miraculous.

 

Hell, it's a miracle that humanity made it this far. Maybe.

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very cool. just imagine the variations we'd get if you took those 10 amino acids and the new 10 were unlike anything here on earth.

 

miraculous is a relative term i guess, and i don't like to use it because of the religious implications.. amazing, stupendous, incredible, awe-inspiring sure.

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Good short read Casek. Yea the variations of life forms out there has always had me intrigued. Humanity has come some so far with technology in just the past few centuries, now imagine other life forms who might have been around longer than us.

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very cool. just imagine the variations we'd get if you took those 10 amino acids and the new 10 were unlike anything here on earth.

 

miraculous is a relative term i guess, and i don't like to use it because of the religious implications.. amazing, stupendous, incredible, awe-inspiring sure.

 

 

 

Agreed. I could have used a different word but "miraculous" seemed fitting.

I guess that's my truest sense of what God is, a burst of energy so magnificent

that it creates a whole universe(s?).

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I disagree with the "not needing a miracle", seeing as how the creation of the universe is itself a miracle.

One tiny speck of energy erupting with matter that blasts out in all directions forming all that exists is pretty miraculous.

 

Hell, it's a miracle that humanity made it this far. Maybe.

 

This article makes some rather large somewhat miraculous leaps itself, all the while assuming certain things that have either not been proven or forget about certain questions entirely. Starting with the big bang, and how the universe had this unbelievably staggering amount of energy that can be neither created nor destroyed. According to its laws, there was always this energy and when it exploded there were all of these magical particles contained within what I can only imagine is a small space and poof, 500 Billion Stars 50 billion Galaxies, and lets just look at the power contained within our own sun. Greater still is our jump from abiotic to biotic life to better yet, to multi-celled organisms and against even greater odds, to functioning organisms. After the universe has been here for billions of years with a dated beginning where again, chemicals, just show up....from nowhere. Now any reasonable person, I can only hope, will see the slight gaps in our "understanding of the universe" and how it fits together. Something just doesn't line up. Aside from infinite energy, aside from something that will always and has always existed, this theory, the laws of thermodynamics themselves do not work, and otherwise, we have this ball floating in space, waiting to just randomly explode in all directions. Now, whatever you decide will fit those criteria, that is up to you. I'm not going to push something on you and I do not believe in the use of Religion for the advancement of political agendas, i.e. Republicans today. Until then, carry on, feel free to PM if you want, chances are, I will not return to this thread for a long while.

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This thread reminds me of quantum theology.

I read somewhere that there are 500 billion stars in each galaxy, 50 billion galaxies, and about 100,000 life supporting planets in each galaxy. How much of that life could be intelligent I wonder? I've never been much of a futurist since technology is also destroying our world, but I look forward to space migration.

 

^^cosigned.

 

Casek, once again great thread. I miss having the time to search for updates in these fields of scientific study. Probably the most interesting shit that you could read about nowadays. Gives hope, answers questions, produces more, and gets your mind off of negative everyday events.

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Tellurian- That isn't "quantum theology" (what would such a phrase even entail?). That is a statistical theorem from an astronomer. I am trying to remember/find the name and the actual statement itself.

 

If I find it tonight (which I'll probably stop looking) I'll post it. Otherwise, why do you see that as a theological comment?

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