Monday, April 26, 2004

ID Research Labs? Have a look at this brief and mostly uninformative description of a recent pro-ID conference held at Biola University in California. The description is written by an ID supporter, and consists mostly of raw descriptions of what took place at the conference. Still, there was one item that caught my eye:

There was news that the intelligent design paradigm is leading to fresh ideas and progress for science. New books, like The Privileged Planet by Guillermo Gonzalez and Jay Wesley Richards, research by Jonathan Wells, and news of several new ID-based research labs alluded to by the Discovery Institute in Seattle, give great hope that the evidence Darwinists have been demanding from ID to produce a fruitful research program and not just a rhetorical exercise may be just around the corner. (Emphasis Added)

Actually, I rather like the subtle implication that until now ID has been mostly a rhetorical exercise.

The existence of “several new ID-based research labs” is news to me, but if they're serious then this is probably good news. I believe that all of the major claims made by ID proponents are incorrect. They feel differently. Fine. The ultimate test of any scientific theory is whether it produces useful results in the field and the lab. If ID people manage to produce genuine results by following their methods, results that would probably not have been obtained by scientists following more orthodox approaches, then I will reconsider my position.

In the past ID folks have always protested that the scientific establishment is so biased against them that their ideas could not receive a fair hearing. If it is true that they now have several labs in which to do their research unhindered by bias from the mainstream, then they will have no excuse when, inevitably, they fail to produce results.

Only time will tell whether an ID lab can produce anything of substance. I'm not holding my breath.


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