The Talk.Origins Archive

Posts of the Month for 2005

January: How to Listen to An Atheist
John Wilkins offers some gentle suggestions on how to dialogue with a member of a group whose voice is all too often overlooked in popular culture and the mass media.
February: The Jigsaw
Ron Okimoto analogizes the process of science to assembling a jigsaw puzzle, drawing some apt parallels about the way we classify phenomena, formulate and test hypotheses, and sometimes make assumptions without even realizing it.
February Runner-Up: How Proteins Evolve contributor sweetnes_n_light explains how evolution can produce large, complex proteins with novel functions, and offers some thoughts on what we might infer about the creator of such a system.
March: The Impossibility of Evolution
Last month's runner-up, t.o. poster sweetnes_n_light, chides those who claim evolution is "obviously" impossible despite having little or no knowledge of the theory itself and the underlying science supporting it.
April: Human and Ape Common Ancestry
John Harshman presents evidence showing that the genetic similarities between humans and other species of apes are best explained by an evolutionary theory of common descent.
May: Body Fluid Salinity
R. Norman discourses on the salt concentration of body fluids such as blood plasma in a variety of living things, and shows how this seemingly obscure subject provides powerful and unexpected evidence for evolution.
May Runner-Up: Faith and Truth
Louann Miller muses on the different reference frames of scientists and creationists, as exemplified in their differing conceptions of what it means for something to be true.
June: Reply to a Creationist
In response to a badly misinformed op-ed column editorializing against evolution, Steven J. offers some helpful corrections.
July: The Evolution of Homeothermy
R. Norman discusses the selective advantages of homeothermy (warm-bloodedness) in birds and mammals and how such an adaptation might have evolved.
July Runner-Up: Running the Scientific Gauntlet
Advising a creationist not to take criticism personally, Robert Grumbine explains the rigorous process of testing which all new scientific ideas must survive.
July Honorable Mention: Speciation and Chromosome Number
Steven J. takes us back to the split between humans and chimpanzees to show how a species' chromosome number can change in the course of evolution.
August: An Exercise in Similarity
B. Richardson and another poster, John Harshman, show how a reliable evolutionary tree can be built encompassing humans and other primates from gene sequences alone.
September: Who Chooses the Winner?
Howard Hershey patiently explains how natural selection "knows" which variants to select.
October: From Hypothesis to Theory
Jim Guillory uses the analogy of continental drift to explain the process by which a scientific idea moves from the status of hypothesis to well-confirmed theory.
October Runner-Up: The Inverted Human Retina
R. Norman addresses creationist claims that the well-known "backwards" wiring of the human retina is necessary for the functioning of the eye.
November: Handling Challenges to Evolution
Andrew relates a story with an important moral about the best way for science teachers to respond to challenges to evolution raised in class by students.
November Runner-Up: The God of Truth
Michael Siemon states forthrightly that ID, being nothing but the latest iteration of God-of-the-Gaps apologetics that have repeatedly failed, should be rejected by all religious people who believe in a God of truth.
December: Unanswered Questions
Bookending the year, Raymond Griffith gently explains to a creationist which questions evolution has and has not yet answered, and why the things we do not yet know are no threat to its truth.

[Post of the Month: Main Index]

POTMs for 2004
POTMs for 2006

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