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''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (12:14)
by james_S
I never understood this because its obviously the chicken, unless God in his divine ways decided to scatter eggs around the planet for them to hatch -and we'll never know that, so whats the point of the question

I'll quote Author title 2's reply since he doesnt have an account. 'its the egg cause the mutation that first formed a creature that satisfies the criteria of a chicken (e.g wings not flippers etc) happened inside the egg and this is an overrated question'

ps. even if God did scatter eggs of all the species, he must've have 'designed' the chicken first, so in a way it already existed on paper (god's paper) -so my answer is still the chicken

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (13:23)
by 乳头的早餐谷物
Oooh. This isn't exactly the most profound topic we've ever had on these forums, but I'm still excited enough to move it into the serious discussion debate forum.

james_S wrote:I never understood this because its obviously the chicken, unless God in his divine ways decided to scatter eggs around the planet for them to hatch -and we'll never know that, so whats the point of the question
Yeah, you'll find that most questions are rather pointless if you consider "because God" to be an acceptable answer.

The egg must have come first, with a bird that wasn't quite a chicken--some kind of junglefowl, I guess--laying an egg that was genetically different enough to be a proper chicken. Of course, really it's not the kind of question that can be properly answered because speciation isn't a process where we can pinpoint that one organism belonged to one species and, bam, its offspring belongs to another.

Also worth noting is that chickens are domesticated animals. Even if you believe in God, even if you believe in a literal interpretation of Genesis (srsly tho), God simply did not create chickens. By definition, chickens as a species were created by humans through selective breeding.

So it has to be the egg, right?

P.S. please edit your first post next time instead of triple-posting.

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (13:32)
by Vyacheslav
Dinosaurs were before birds. Dinosaurs laid eggs.

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (14:19)
by james_S
@ Vyacheslav. (bit off topic) the Bibl doesn’t have to mention any previous versions of animal life.. God must've had a reason to get rid of dinasaurs, probably cause if you think about it, they were all too similar looking.

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (14:37)
by EddyMataGallos
It was probably just a long process of continued mutations that changed the species step by step, just as it happens with any other one, like maestro pointed out. I find it rather more interesting the change between not laying eggs and then laying them. How can you progressively change that?

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (15:06)
by james_S
I guess not a very common realisation that people and other animal life still lay eggs in a sense, its just depends whether they are excreted from the body and therefore require a hardened shell or not.

hm maybe wings may have evolved after some creatures for some reason found bigger more fancy 'arms' more attractive and then they realised they can get some lift by flapping them up and down while prancing around (and for example get an advantage of height during fighting or just trying to look 'bigger' yet again)

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (15:20)
by EddyMataGallos
Species may produce eggs but not necessarily lay them down, thats the interesting change the question is probably aimed at, because really the egg vs hen question is nothing but a series of mutations, I don't think the point of the question is being literal.

I'm sure excreting the eggs is just the result of another kind of series of mutations though, at the end of the day, everything follows the same principles. I think that trying to interpret this question literally is an error. It rather means, how do you explain what happened before on a cyclical series of things?

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.28 (16:12)
by james_S
cool, i wonder if there any non math formula examples..
Anyway to spice up this thread 'Dilemma by Edwyn Collins' song (his voice affected by stroke he had)

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.29 (00:12)
by RandomDigits
NOTE: this is all based on the scientific models of modern evolutionary biology, which by now have been shown to be very difficult to disprove.

When I read the title of the topic on IRC, my initial response was this:
<RandomDigits> the egg, obviously

upon reading the posts here, my response changes slightly, to this:
If we're talking about the evolution of species, and assuming the question refers to a chicken's egg, and not, say, a spider's egg, then, my answer remains:
<RandomDigits> the egg, obviously
for the reasons given above by maestro.

If for some weird reason the question referred to eggs in general,
<RandomDigits> the egg, obviously

Here's another interpretation:
I walk back into the room after only a few seconds. I'm holding a live chicken under my arm, and an egg in my other hand. Everyone stares at me.

Someone points a shaking hand at the bird and asks, "Where did you get that?"

"Oh my god!" The host shouts. "There's gonna be bird crap everywhere!" Then she lowers her voice, "Take that chicken the fuck out of my apartment!"

But I'm not really paying attention. I look around the room. The chicken clucks, I clear my throat.

"Which came first," I say. "The chicken, or the egg?"

the chicken, obviously

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.29 (01:43)
by EddyMataGallos
Depends on how you define chicken, which is pretty much impossible for the reasons I'm going to explain now. So pretty much you have to consider its ancestors, in which case, they did come first. Let me explain myself properly below.

RandomDigits, maestro didn't say the egg came first, note that maestro's argument is that, since mutations get produced from generation to generation, theoretically the first individual of the "current chicken species" would have come from an egg that was genetically different enough to be a proper chicken, with qualities that its parents didn't have. Which is correct if we consider the "current chicken state" as something stationary, in which case, we can just go back in time to where this state hadn't appeared yet, but its ancestors were already laying eggs, which would imply that yeah, the eggs did come first.

That's fine, but there is no such thing as "current chicken species" since its continuously changing, which he also mentioned. There really is not a discrete amount of states, but rather a continuous range, so when you say "chicken vs egg" that just can't be answered from a literal point of view at least, unless you define exactly what a chicken is, which would require you to pinpoint the exact first individual since changes are produced in every single generation, which would be impossible.

See it this way, if we found an ancestor of the chicken from 100 million years ago, most would probably argue "thats not a chicken man, thats a dinosaur, and it laid eggs, hence eggs came first". Obviously the chicken doesn't come from the dinosaurs, but I'm sure it does come from a species that, millions of years ago, was much different and still laid eggs, so the point is the same. Now, what about an ancestor from 20 years ago, this time it is a chicken right? Well man, both cases are the same, the current chicken state isn't the same as 20 years ago neither, not even as yesterday, the definition of chicken just depends on the range of time you select, if you go further back in time, it will be more different, ¿when do you stop?. Both examples are basically the same if we consider the evolution as something continuous, which it is.

That's why I rather interpret the question as "which came first, the ancestor of the chicken which could lay eggs, or the egg that contained that ancestor". From this point of view, I think its clear that the answer would be the ancestor, since its parents couldn't lay eggs and hence it wasn't born out of one. See it this way, if we go back in time, following the evolutionary steps of the chicken, there is some point in which we are going to stop because the species weren't laying eggs yet. At this point, there would have been an individual (which wasn't born out of an egg since this hadn't appeared yet) genetically different enough to excrete the eggs, in which case, that individual is the first ancestor, and eggs came afterwards.

Of course, if you generalize even more, and consider the zygote and embryo as eggs (even without excreting them), you would need to go much further back, to the point were sexual reproduction appeared. However, from this point of view the ancestor is still the first to have appeared, since at first we obviously know that there was asexual reproduction (mitosis and so on) so following the same argument as in my last paragraph, the ancestor would have been the first genetically different enough to reproduce sexually, which would have been necessarility born by mitosis (or any other asexual reproduction process), considering that sexual reproduction wouldn't have existed until then.

So from any of these points of view the ancestor did come first. I know, this isn't a literal answer to the question, but I already explained why I doubt this can be answered literally. As I already said, the transition between not laying eggs to laying eggs is more interesting, because it involves a change thats harder to imagine being done progressively, since it was also surely a series of continued mutations so its also impossible to pinpoint the first individual who did it.

But anyway, that doesn't invalidate my previous arguments, the conclusion is that as soon as you consider the evolution as a continuous process, the answer is always going to be the species and not the eggs, and it will be the way around if you consider evolutionary steps as stationary states.

It is rather futile to try to explain it using the second point of view though.

(... and that's how you waste 40 minutes ...)

Re: ''chicken or the egg'' -Help pls

Posted: 2014.05.29 (15:02)
by james_S
I just realised I've been stupid. I was saying even if God did just scatter eggs of species, those species must've existed before as prototypes etc. and hence 'the chicken came first' but the better reason is: how could those eggs have survived without being cared for and fed

Hypothesizing about evolution (with fingers crossed)- all mutations happen at embrio stage surely (at least its reasonable to assume that the mutation that led to a complete definition of a chicken happened like that) so 'the parent gave birth to something different'.

Re: The Highscore Rankings

Posted: 2015.03.22 (02:21)
by james_S
Existentialism is back! altho on the n2 forum ... ssues#3047 -I'm only posting this cause I have a habit of publishing 'remakes' and its an opportunity to say that the more recent me would've been less 'big mouthy' on this thread. that's that..