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SubjectRe: Coding style - a non-issue
On Sun, 2 Dec 2001 15:53:46 -0500
"n7ekg@swbell.net" <n7ekg@swbell.net> wrote:

> I have been following this thread with a mixture of amusement and exasperation - amusement that intelligent people like Linus, who ought to know better, are spouting this evolution stuff, and exasperation that some people think that because someone's an expert in one thing, they are an expert in all things.

No offense toward anyone but I find that many non-religious people can be found in the CompSci area of expertise. I'm not sure why this is but besides myself and another friend all the other people I know in that general field are atheists. It would only make sense that we would hear atheist type remarks within these discussions just as we would hear Christian remarks in another field of expertise that seems to attract Christians.

>
> The idea of genetic evolution itself is complete nonsense - biological systems don't evolve genetically, they evolve environmentally. Biological systems change as a result of random mutation, and what doesn't work doesn't survive. What people try to pass off as evolution is simply the less fit not surviving to pass on their bad genes. Sort of like the hundred monkeys idea.

True. Many mutations in human DNA cause the resulting human to be unable to reproduce once they reach the age where a normal human could do so.


>
> But that is all completely irrelevent to coding, since it is extremely inefficient for systems to "evolve" based on trial and error. The way modern systems evolve is based on (hopefully) *intelligent* selection - I write a patch, submit it to Linus. He doesn't accept it, throw it in the kernel, and that's it - he looks at it, what it does, and decides if it fits in the Grand Scheme of things - kernel efficiency, speed, flexibility, extensability, and maintainability - and *then* decides if it makes it in. They key difference is that in nature, mutation is random because it can afford to be - in coding, it isn't because we don't have thousands or millions of years to find out whether or not something works or not.

We have a way of being able to direct the evolution of our code as we can control the bad parts and teh good parts and what gets added and what doesn't. We have no control over our DNA (human genetics may have proven me wrong already but if not, it shouldn't take more than a few months more) so mutations in the human race are more random.

>
> That being said, I am well aware that "genetic programming" has made some progress in that direction, mainly because it doesn't take millenia to figure out what works and what doesn't. But that's a long way from "evolving" an entire operating system. I don't believe for a moment that homo sapiens "evolved" from pond scum although I might believe that some fellow homo sapiens *are* pond scum!) -

*finally* someone who doesn't believe in evolution of the human race. As a side note, i've heard some people say that a bolt of lightning triggered some proteins to start growing into single celled organisms and then into what we now call today human beings. I take offense that I came from a single celled organism. I believe the more complex an object or system is the less randomness can be added in order to arrive at the current/final version. I think we all agree the human body is the most complex object in the universe so how can we say that our existence was an accident?

An operating system is a complex system as well. We all know code doesn't evolve on its own to generate an operating system right? :) It has to be created and as time goes on code forks are sometimes introduced. In humans that could be somewhat akin to whites, blacks, asians, etc. But they were all created from the code that God started with. He just released his source code(dna) a little later in the development tree than some people may have wanted so there was no point in letting us evolve into something more as we were already different enough. :)

>it only makes sense that we are a created species, and that Homo Erectus ans all the rest were early genetic > experiments. Who created homo sapiens is beyond the scope of this discussion ;)

It is beyond the scope. If we attempted that topic we would be branded as close-minded even though the others (read: non-religious) can do it and they defend themselves by saying its free speech.

my time is out for this post.
brandon
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