IN Scientific American we read Slime mold validates efficiency of Tokyo rail network. Here are some excerpts, with bold added by us:
What do Tokyo commuter-rail designers and the slime mold Physarum polycephalum have in common? The two will build strikingly similar networks.
Gasp! A lowly slime mold can mimic an intelligent design? There will be wailing in Seattle. Let’s read on:
A Japan-based research team found that if they placed bits of food (oat flakes) around a central Physarum in the same location as 36 outlying cities around Tokyo, the mold created a network connecting the food sources that looked rather like the existing rail system. And when comparable “topographical barriers” were introduced onto the experimental plane, the links were even more similar.
But … the creationists say that complex biological constructions are evidence of an external, supernatural guiding force. What’s going on here? We continue:
Like the humans behind a constructed network, the organism is interested in saving costs while maximizing utility. In fact, the researchers wrote that this slimy single-celled amoeboid can “find the shortest path through a maze or connect different arrays of food sources in an efficient manner with low total length yet short average minimum distances between pairs of food sources, with a high degree of fault tolerance to accidental disconnection” — and all without the benefit of “centralized control or explicit global information.” In other words, it can build highly efficient connective networks without the help of a planning board.
There’s more to the article, but we’ve copied enough. There’s another article on this in Science News: Slime design mimics Tokyo’s rail system.
The observed ability of biological self organization is one of the many facts that creationists refuse to accept — even when the evidence is right in front of them.
Update: See Creationism and the Slime Mold.
See also: Intelligent Design without a Designer.
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