Spotting Design

Experimental Archaeology
Experimental Archaeology. Photo (cc) Wessex Archaeology.

I wish I was as good an archae­olo­gist as Michael Egnor claims to be. Egnor has recently writ­ten on the Antikythera Mechanism from a cre­ation­ist point of view. To be hon­est I dis­agree with some of it, the words mainly, but the spaces and punc­tu­ation on the other hand seem sound. Christopher O’Brien has given the words far more atten­tion than they deserve, so if you want a cri­tique of the pro­pos­i­tions ((It took me half an hour to choose that word. Facts as the blog entry makes clear wouldn’t have been the right choice)) then it’s a great read. What I find dif­fi­cult is the repeated claim by cre­ation­ists that you can simply see design.

It’s a com­mon claim. When fun­da­ment­al­ists Cameron and Comfort are notexhort­ing people to stick banana-shaped objects into their mouths they make claims like: “If you stuck a group of sci­ent­ists in a room with a paint­ing then, with noth­ing from the out­side world, they would con­clude there was a painter.” Now I don’t think they would. I can­not simply see design in com­plex objects, so are the cre­ation­ists wrong or am I thick?
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