Yesterday evening the boys and I attended the Answers in Genesis conference hosted by Merrimack Valley Baptist Church, featuring Dr. Ken Ham. (See event details, including driving directions here.)
There are two more sessions this evening. I highly recommend attending. Dr. Ham is an excellent presenter, and teaches in ways that are both fascinating and amusing.
I’ve now attended three different Creation Science conferences: Dr. Ham’s presentations are on par with the excellent work of the Institue for Creation Research. (There is a third, very well-known Creation Science presenter I’ve seen whose seemed to go off-topic at times, and who left me feeling he was a bit loopy when he did so.)
There were a few things which were of particular interest to me, although everything was interesting:
- Not a single point mutation ever studied has resulted in an increase of genetic information: They have all (all that we have studied so far, at least) removed information. It turns out that the things we dread, like bacterial resistance to antibiotics, are due to genetic information being lost from the strains. (In one specific example, mutation removed the ability to produce an enzyme that converted the antibiotic to poison within the bacterium, making a particular antibiotic ineffective.)
- The explanations of how specific breeds of dogs show subsamples of a more genetically diverse gene pool were excellent. He referred to his wife’s expensive-to-care-for hypoallergenic poodle-type dog as, “my wife’s degenerate, mutant dog.” I have always been fascinated by genetics, and enjoyed this part of the presentations immensely.
- During an explanation of 14C (Carbon 14) dating versus K-AR (Potassium-Argon) dating, Dr. Ham presented a find from a mine in Australia, where samples of fossil trees (not petrified) were found embedded in the bottom of a basalt layer. The layer was K-AR dated at 36 to 45 million years old, while the wood was radiocarbon dated to about 45,000 years old. They can’t both be correct, especially as 14C isn’t supposed to persist in measurable quantities for more then 100,000 years.
Dr. Ham has blogged about this conference himself here.
Robotics (especially for Neal Stephenson fans):
Space Slide Shows:
For anyone who tried to post/read the Wilcox Family BLOG yesterday, we were affected by the power outage in Los Angeles. When I noticed our mail server was down, I started to file a help request, and got to this page:
Urgent Notice: 9/12/2005
Currently there is a Major Power Outage that has affected Los Angeles Area where one of our data center currently reside.
About half of the servers are currently running using the backup generators.
Unfortunately, the backup generators are not able to supply enough power for the other half of the servers.
We are currently working with the Los Angeles power department to getting power back up for your server.
To read more about the power outage… http://kcal9.com/topstories/topstoriesla_story_255162353.html.
If you have any questions regarding this matter, please proceed and open a support ticket or give us a call. Thank you.
We’ve just upgraded to WordPress 188.8.131.52 (a security-only upgrade). This is primarily a test post to make sure everything is still working. To report any problems, use the e-mail link for Doug on the right, or post a comment.
See the BLOG Updates page for more details on the changes that have been made to the BLOG over time.
There aren’t very many digital cinemas, nationwide. There were 83, if memory serves, when Star Wars Episode I opened. We were fortunate enough to live near one.
Try this digital cinema finder, from Texas Instruments, the folks who bring you DLP, to see if there is one near you.
DLP is, quite frankly, an amazing improvement over film. I have heard that there are some theaters with a newer DLP projector that has even higher resolution.
Thanks to Christine Bennett for this Roomba-inspired entry.
There are few things in life cooler than exploring other parts of our Solar System. Along those lines, here are a couple of great links recommended by Brian Cortez:
A Dust Devil on Mars
Apollo 13, We Have a Solution—An accurate and fascinating account of the engineering and preparation that allowed Apollo 13’s crew to return safely to earth. If you have seen the film, you definitely want to read the real story.
Doug “JavaDoug” Ross contributing this link to the MSNBC Tech/Science Slide Show Archive, which contains more wonder.
Artist Lynette Cook is achieving fame via her amazing work on extrasolar planets. Be sure to look at her other work as well.
We, like many Americans, are waiting for our tax refund from the Treasury Department. I was poking about the IRS Web site, and discovered an online tool that will tell you when the IRS received your return, and when your refund check will be mailed. Give it a try!
Of course, I lean Libertarian (although I understand the needs of a Federalist system), so I want much more of my tax money back, but that’s a different topic.
Check out Nathan Sawaya’s amazing full-size Han Solo in Carbonite sculpture, as well as his other work.
This makes me want to throw my Lego out the window, especially when I consider all the trouble I have had putting together a decent-looking Thunderbid 2 model. ::: sigh :::
(Thanks to Christine Bennett for the link to Nathan Sawaya’s site.)