## Claim CF005:

The second law of thermodynamics applies to information theory. It
follows that genetic information will become increasingly degraded as it
gets repeatedly copied over time.
### Source:

Kofahl, Robert E., and Kelly L. Segraves, 1975. *The Creation Explanation:
A scientific alternative to evolution*. Wheaton, IL: Harold Shaw, p. 37.

Morris, Henry M., 1974. *Scientific Creationism*, Green Forest, AR:
Master Books, pp. 38-40.

## Response:

- While statistical information theory has a quantity called "entropy",
it does not have anything equivalent to the second law of
thermodynamics. In a general information processing/transmitting
system, entropy can freely decrease or increase.

- There are some classes of information systems in which information can
only decrease, for example a deterministic, causally isolated system
with discrete states. However (at least in this case) the information
loss corresponds to a
**decrease** in entropy.

- Information theory does sort of have a principle of degradation, but it
is only applicable in certain situations (which evolution isn't one
of). It implies, essentially, that information change is irreversible:
information gets more and more
**different from how it started
out**, and
the more it gets changed, the harder it is to tell how it started out.
In a communication or information storage system, where the goal is to
transmit or replay the original message intact, change is necessarily
bad, so this corresponds to degradation. In evolution, change is not
necessarily bad, so this is not a principle of degradation.

## Links:

Davisson, Gordon, 4/18/2001. Information and microevolution.
Message-ID ,
http://www.google.com/groups?selm=gordon-A6A709.21492518042001%40%5B127.0.0.1%5D

Davisson, Gordon, 7/14/2002. Re: Simple Thermodynamics Argument.
Message-ID ,
http://www.google.com/groups?selm=gordon-B61948.18383114072002%40%5B127.0.0.1%5D

Davisson, Gordon, 2001. Macroscopic and molecular entropy.
http://www.talkorigins.org/origins/postmonth/aug01.html
## Further Reading:

Shannon, Claude E., 1948. A mathematical theory of communication. *Bell
System Technical Journal*, 27: 379-423 and 623-656. Reprinted in Claude
E. Shannon and Warren Weaver, *The Mathematical Theory of
Communication*,
University of Illinois Press, Urbana, 1949;
http://cm.bell-labs.com/cm/ms/what/shannonday/paper.html
(Shannon's
seminal paper on information theory; technical)

created 2003-9-15