HBO will make a Foundation TV series

IO9 has the details.  Apparently Jonathan Nolan, of 'Interstellar' fame, is involved. I'm not sure how I feel about this.  The Foundation series, by Isaac Asimov, is classic golden age science fiction.  It's one of those works that has influenced lots of other science fiction, with many common tropes originating from it.  Galactic empires?  Foundation. … Continue reading HBO will make a Foundation TV series

The (ongoing) evolution of evolutionary theory

Massimo weighs in on a debate that I’m increasingly starting to view as semantic.  Everyone seems to agree on the actual science, but disagrees whether or not it should be categorized as a new era of evolutionary theory.  Massimo admits in this post that the new proposed paradigm is essentially a super-set of the current one.  That still feels somewhat like gradualism to me, but I have a hard time getting worked up over definitional disputes.

Still, Massimo provides some information on the history of evolutionary thought that is interesting.

Scientia Salon

41J0nOguz-L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_by Massimo Pigliucci

Nature magazine recently ran a “point-counterpoint” entitled “Does evolutionary theory need a rethink?” [1] Arguing for the “Yes, urgently” side were Kevin Laland, Tobias Uller, Marc Feldman, Kim Sterelny, Gerd B. Müller, Armin Moczek, Eva Jablonka, and John Odling-Smee. Arguing for the “No, all is well” thesis were Gregory A. Wray, Hopi E. Hoekstra, Douglas J. Futuyma, Richard E. Lenski, Trudy F. C. Mackay, Dolph Schluter, and Joan E. Strassmann.

That’s a good number of top notch evolutionary biologists, colleagues that I very much respect, on both sides of the aisle. My own allegiances have been made clear in a number of papers [2] and a co-edited book [3]. I have been arguing for some time now for what I consider the moderate-yes side of the debate: yes, evolutionary theory does need (and is, in fact, getting) an update, but that update is yet another expansion along…

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