I found myself spending a lot of time reading much of that thread. It left my head spinning. Among the tangents I followed via links to other websites was one entitled “Order=Signal, Random=Noise.” at Order = Signal. Random = Noise. , the Evolution 2.0 website of Perry Marshall. I’m not an electrical engineer by training but I can understand why in that particular field the aforementioned title is a typically useful generalization. Nevertheless, my gut tells me that it fails as a strict maxim. After all, a continuous sine wave is certainly an example of order—because the pattern is totally predictable and unfailing (if a perfect sine wave and not being modulated in some way, such as via AM or FM, or coupled with another sine wave in some sort of phase modulation.) Nevertheless, I don’t see how that sine wave type of order is a signal, unless in the form of a crude dead-man switch sort of “signal.”
That is, for example, if a continuous sine wave is broadcast from a radio transmission tower, it does communicate a kind of underlying “message” that the tower continues to exist and function. If the sine wave broadcast ceases, there is a kind of underlying “message” that the transmission tower’s antenna is no longer receiving electrical power (for whatever reason) or no longer exists fully intact. The transmission of the continuous sine wave over the long-term can communicate the idea that the transmission facility is being actively maintained by human operators. Some mysterious continuous short-wave broadcasts have long been assumed by many to be dead-man switches of this sort, maintained in order to inform their personnel around the world that the homeland has not yet been vaporized by a nuclear bomb attack.
Thus, I don’t think the website title is all that helpful in a discussion of evolution. Am I missing something? Am I approaching this topic wrongly? (Of course, I could cite other aspects of that webpage that appear to me to be problematic but I wanted to focus on the title at this point.)