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Index to Creationist Claims,  edited by Mark Isaak,    Copyright © 2004
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Claim CF010:

Darwinians and Neo-Darwinians have long maintained that randomness, plus long time spans, plus natural selection would (together) do the trick in making specific codes and molecules. However, recent progress in cybernetics has shown by simulation experiments that order sequences, specificity and coding cannot be extracted from randomness on the basis of the Darwinian postulates.


Wilder-Smith, A. E., 1970. The Creation of Life: a cybernetic approach to evolution. Wheaton, IL: Harold Shaw Publishers, pg. 116.


  1. The claim is unequivocally false. It was made in the early days of computing, apparently on the basis of one failed simulation. Computer simulations since have shown just the opposite of what Wilder-Smith claimed. In fact, genetic algorithms, which use evolutionary principles of mutation, recombination, and natural selection, are used routinely in industry to solve complex problems (Heitkötter and Beasley 2000; Koza et al. 2003). Artificial life simulating evolution on a computer evolves complex features (Lenski et al. 2003).


National Science Foundation, 2003. Artificial life experiments show how complex functions can evolve.


  1. Heitkötter, J. and D. Beasley (eds.). 2000. The Hitch-hiker's guide to evolutionary computation (FAQ for, Issue 8.2 (20 Sep.).
  2. Koza, John R., Martin A. Keane and Matthew J. Streeter. 2003. Evolving inventions. Scientific American 288(2) (Feb.): 52-59.
  3. Lenski, R. E., C. Ofria, R. T. Pennock and C. Adami. 2003. The evolutionary origin of complex features Nature 423: 139-144. (See also NSF, 2003, above.)

Further Reading:

Elsberry, Wesley R. 1997, Enterprising science needs naturalism.

Holland, J. H. 1975. Adaptation in Natural and Artificial Systems. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press. (technical)
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created 2001-2-18, modified 2004-12-29