How you think about the changing landscape IMO is shaped by which particular area of biology catches your mind. The New Science of Evo Devo. For a paleontologist, the fossil record is long and has poor time resolution.
Same-same we ended up with wheat, and bananas. Peter March 12, at 4: Gould also delves into the history of evolutionary thought in great detail. Still another idea is that the past evolutionary history of species helps to shape their future.
For example, flowering plants require pollinating insects. Arguably what you see in the fossil record has more to do with the way the local optima change over time than progress towards those local optima. Mitochondria ended up in our cells like this.
The life river is made up of genes instead of drops of water, and the genes stick tight into packets that we call individual organisms and the organisms tend to clump together into species.
A lot of the morphological changes in evolution are due to changes during development, so understanding how these interact helps provide a clearer model of biological evolution.
Mixing developmental biology and evolution provides a wonderful perspective on evolution. Organisms interact with each other. Some times several clumps just fall apart. The ideas covered in it are also still surprisingly fresh.
It was written in English and is still relatively close to modern work except for the total lack of knowledge of genetics. I have a background in physical chemistry if that makes any difference.
Covering a much bushier space than a random walk caused by genetic drift without selection would cover, of course. Bacteria may be quite more successful than humans in many Darwinian ways.
But the mutation side of evolution is extremely important. Sometimes two different clumps merge. The answers have been generally accurate, but still very different from each other.
Like, there are hormones which control each stage of development, and an overall body plan which gets built during gestation. In gradient descent, you have a fixed fitness function that you are optimizing.
So a model for large-scale evolutionary history might be an explosion of branching random walks. Human at the top, obviously, and bacteria at the bottom. I think the idea is that natural selection causes species to track changes in the evolutionary landscape, and the changes in the evolutionary landscape are what causes a lot of the movements seen in the fossil record.
And all the while the river is slowly moving on to the future. Even if you could consider the fitness of organisms in isolation, the environment is constantly changing, and adaptations that are good for one environment might be quite bad for another. Nancy Lebovitz March 12, at 1: One of them is punctuated equlibrium.
I think gradient descent is a very bad metaphor for evolution. The metaphor evoked by this book would be something like a function with a small number of parameters that generates another function, which itself is evaluated for fitness.
Another is the importance of randomness in the history of life: Can someone recommend a good book on evolution? We can now concretely see what genes and regulation factors exactly change throughout time, and explain the variability across organisms.Army Medical College Rawalpindi Admission online.
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