Yes.

Wow. I’m fairly stunned to be reading this, realizing that it is from a scientist. It demonstrates basic misunderstanding of statistics. He is describing agreed upon science with idiosyncratic use of “random”.

Notice that Shapiro agrees that this is true. He agrees there is no way to predict which of two chromosomes will end up in a particular daughter cell. This is a random “choice” or “variable” in the process. It is a maximum entropy decision, because it can go either way with equal likelihood. It is a single bit of randomness, one for each chromosome and each division.

No one disagrees with this too. There is an order to the randomness. There is a part that we cannot predict, and a part we can usually predict. These two things are true at the same time.

Now Shapiro starts to use random in an idiosyncratic way, making the claim that this process is not ** truly** random. This is just a false. Instead, like all random processes, there randomness and order.

There maybe no such thing as randomness that has no order; that is a myth which might only appear possibly in quantum theory. The fact that there is order from one point of view, does not in any way erase the randomness we see from another point of view. As Shapiro defines it, there may be absolutely nothing that is “truly random”. This is a misleading abuse of terminology.

Which means it fails randomly, and is therefore not totally deterministic. I’m not sure I would take the 99% to the bank, but any uncertainty, then it is a random variable.

It has to be 100% exactly to not be random. Depending on the precise thing we are modeling, very low probably events can be very important. There is a profound difference between a 0% likelihood event (deterministically impossible) and a nearly 0% likelihood event (very rare). The two are not exchangeable.

Absolutely not silly. This is precisely what we are quantifying all the time in information theory, statistics, and machine learning. We would say, perhaps, 75% explained variance, and 25% unexplained. 75% deterministic, and 25% random. 75% predicted and 25% random. There are several ways it can be said, but we are precisely measuring these things all the time. So of course it is not silly to describe what we are measuring.

Not likely at this moment. He is not willing to engage on the forum. I’m not sure why.