Origin of Life: The 5th OPTION


  1. The Fifth OPTION: The Rational Design Hypothesis (RDH)
  2. The Fragility of Life
  3. Options for Consideration
  4. Is That All There Is?
  5. Bridging the Gap
Ch 1                           Back To Square One
  1. The Planet Earth and Life: A Brief Chronology
  2. Were We Expecting Visitors?
  3. The Oldest Fossils
  4. A Brief History of Life
  5. Time for a Change
  6. The Biosphere
  7. Evolution – More Than Just a Theory
Ch 2                           The 2nd OPTION - Spontaneous Abiogenesis (SAb):
  1. History
  2. Present Status of Spontaneous Abiogenesis (SAb)
  3. RNA World:
  4. Life and The Universal Tool Machine
  5. Crystal Genes - Life's First Organisms Were Made of Clay?
  6. Metabolism First
  7. Additional Scenarios:
  8. Trouble In Paradise:
  9. Submarine Hydrothermal Vents
  10. Complexity and Artificial Life
  11. Self-Assembly as Complexity
  12. Evolution…by any other name!
  13. The Unfolding Universe – A Different Kind of Evolution
  14. Emergence – Two Kinds of Expectations
  15. An Unlikely Pioneer
  16. SAb Desperately In Need Of  A Law of Complexity      
  17. Too Many Solutions To Just A Single Problem
  18. Look To NASA When All Else Fails
Ch 3                           The Case Against Abiogenesis:
  1. Is Biochemistry Simply An Extrapolation of Chemistry?
  2. The Chemistry of Non-Life
  3. Non-Living Chemical Activity
  4. The Shotgun and the Clock
  5. Photosynthesis -The Engine that Drives Life
  6. The DNA Informational Tape - Like beads on a String
  7. Vive La Difference
  8. Evolution: Where Did It Come From and When?
  9. Against the Forces of Entropy
  10. If it Happened Once....
  11. More Issues
  12. Life and the Marriage of Power & Information
  13. Trouble At the Bottom-Up
  14. Additional Nagging Questions
  15. Time - of the Essence
  16. Conclusions
Ch 4                           The Other "Origin of Life" Options:
  1. The 3rd Option - Panspermia: Seeds From Outer Space:
  2. The 4th Option - Directed Panspermia: A New Twist:
  3. The 1st Option - Creationism: An Historical Legacy
  4. The Anthropic Cosmological Principle
  5. The "5th" OPTION - The Rational Design Hypothesis
  6. SETI: The Search(s) for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence
  7. The Drake Equation - A Dream Formula
  8. Design/Designer Dichotomy
  9. The Rational Design Hypothesis - An Occam's Razor of Sorts
  10. Where Do We Go From Here?
Ch 5                           A Systems Engineering Approach:
  1. Systems Engineering: Basic Concepts
  2. Validation of Life System Concept
  3. The Top Down Approach
  4. The Life System (LS) - More a Definition Than Metaphor
  5. Take It From The Top!
  6. Three Little Questions
  7. Reverse Engineering - A Logical Catalytic Approach
  8. Systems Engineering (SE) Principles and How It Works
  9. Recap of What We Are Trying To Do
Ch 6                           A System of Functional Levels:
  1. A Little Background History
  2. Life Hierarchy
  3. Getting Into The Engineering Frame of Mind
  4. Life and the Planet - A Unique Partnership
  5. The Ties That Bind
  6. Question: What Exactly is the LS Doing
  7. A Preliminary Assessment of Life Using Systems Engineering Mindset
  8. The Operational Levels of Life
Ch 7                           The Macro Level of Bio-Life:
  1. The Big Picture
  2. Organisms
  3. Biological Feedback and Comfort Levels
  4. Machines Have Purpose; Organisms Have Goals
  5. Conscious Awareness – The Ultimate Extension of Feedback
  6. The Life System (LS) – A System of Paradoxes
  7. The Food Chain:
  8. Species
  9. The Two Major Axes of Life System Activity
  10. Life - A Tale of Two Possibilities
  11. Survival Context at the Macro Level
  12. Extinctions Hall of Fame: A Statement of Survival
  13. Sex - Games Species Play
  14. Conclusions From the “Macro” Perspective
Ch 8                           Evolution - Defying Time:
  1. The Politics of Evolution - Revisited
  2. What You See Is What You Get
  3. The Prime Cultural Challenge
  4. Authors Of Their Own Misfortune
  5. An Intellectual Middle Ground
  6. Systems Engineering Considerations In The Debate
  7. The Goal is Adaptation; Evolution Is The Result
  8. Mutations
  9. Primary Design Platform of the LS – “Go”
  10. Wherefore "M" and "m"s?
  11. Environmental Initiative Challenge
  12. Evolution - A Curious Duality
  13. How Natural Adaptive Selection Really Works
  14. The Influence of Genetic Changes
  15. The Rules of Engagement
  16. A Question of Survival
  17. Species & Environmental Niches
  18. Species & Their Biosphere Habitats
  19. Species Attributes (SA's) & Biosphere Attributes (BAs)
  20. Caveat Lector!
  21. An Equivalency Principle of Evolution
  22. Action & Reaction - An Exercise In Survival
  23. Species Attributes & Distribution Curves
  24. Populations, Variables, and Statistics
  25. Species Populations and Continuous Distribution Curves
  26. Distribution Curves and Evolution
  27. Consequences of Biosphere Attribute Changes
  28. Mutations, Tolerances and Natural Selection
  29. Morphology and Species Attributes
Ch 9                           Species Adaptation: A Complex Exercise In Survival:
  1. Survival Strategies and Tactics
  2. Safety in Numbers - A Hedge Against Catastrophe
  3. Inverse Square Root of "n" (iSRN) Rule
  4. Adaptive Survival - A Numbers Game
  5. Population Size, Mutations and Survival
  6. Back to Square One - The Beginnings of Life On The Planet
  7. The LS-Planet Symbiosis: By Chance or Design?
  8. How Far Have We Come
  9. Evolution Is: Species Biosphere Attribute Anticipation (SBAA)
  10. A New Interpretation?
  11. Systems Engineering Perspective
  12. Implications for SAB
  13. Back To Reality
  14. The Bottom Line - Evolution Is Strictly an LS Phenomenon
  15. Evolution Within Its Appropriate Perspective
  16. Complex Species: Serendipity or Design?
  17. The Evolution Agenda According to the Rational Design Hypothesis
Ch 10                           The Micro Level of Bio-Life:
  1. The Biological Cell - The Living Building Block of Life 2] The
  2. Cellular Primary Design Platform (PdP)
  3. The Family Tree of Biological Life – The Old Paradigm
  4. The Family Tree of the LS – A New Paradigm
  5. A Contrarian View
  6. Re-examination of the PdP Concept
  7. Two PdP’s Are Better Than One
  8. Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes - Different as Night and Day
  9. The Generic Cell - A Study in Genuine Complexity
  10. Prokaryotes and Eukaryotes – A Comparison
  11. Cell Functional Components
  12. Feedback Control – A Defining Ingredient For PdP Viability
  13. Control Systems in Biology
  14. Feedback Implications for Evolution
  15. Making It Tick
  16. The Information System
  17. The Power Plant
  18. Design Implications For Evolution
  19. Reproduction and Morphogenesis
  20. Death - An Essential Part of Life
  21. SE Summary at Micro-Cellular Level
  22. A Personal Commentary
Ch 11                           The Energy Level of Bio-Life:
  1. Energy Conversion - A Two Step Process
  2. Photosynthesis - The Engine of Life
  3. The Laws of Thermodynamics - More Than Just
  4. Energy Bookkeeping
  5. The First Law of Thermodynamics
  6. The First Law and the Big Bang
  7. First Law Implications For the LS
  8. The Second Law of Thermodynamics
  9. Important Thermodynamic Concepts
  10. The 2nd Law and Life
  11. The Case of the Five Coins (No Fountain)
  12. Intelligence – A Random-Error Reduction Scheme
  13. Entropy – Two Concepts For the Price of One
  14. Thermodynamics and Biological Life
  15. Entropy – A Confusing Duality
  16. 2nd Law Relationships
  17. Biological Life – A Very Special Case
  18. Break the Law in Two
  19. The Problem of Interpretation
  20. The Helping Hand
  21. Life in the Balance – A Question of Equilibrium
  22. In Defiance After All
  23. Self-Replication As An Engine of Increased Complexity
  24. Maxwell's Demon - Better Late Than Never
  25. From Demons to Humans
  26. mplications for Life
  27. Intelligence – A Many Splendored Thing
Ch 12                           The Information Level of Bio-Life:
  1. The Arrow of Information Flow, Dogmas & the 2nd Law:
  2. The Universal dogma of Information Flow (UDIF)
  3. A Definition of Life In Terms of the 2nd Law
  4. The Nature and Source of Intelligence in the Universe
  5. Intelligence In Terms of Its Qualitative and Quantitative Attributes
  6. The Ultimate Intelligence Source
  7. Two Different Worlds - One Convergent, The Other Divergent
  8. Time - Sooner or Later
  9. Of Chickens and Eggs
  10. Life - Another Kind of State?
  11. A "Quantum" Definition of Life
  12. DNA - The Informational Molecule
  13. An Alphabet of Four Letters
  14. Transcription
  15. Editing Out the Junk
  16. Translation - A language of Three-Letter Words
  17. Protein Synthesis - The Universal Tool Machine
  18. From Information To Proteins
  19. Mutations Revisited
  20. Survival of Genetic Information
  21. The Genetic Code - The Universal Language of the LS
  22. Mediums and Messages
  23. The Nature of Genetic Information:
  24. The Nature and Versatility of the Linear Information Format:
  25. Generic Information Systems
  26. Systems Engineering Observations & Implications for the LS
  27. Moving Forward
Ch 13                           The Primary Intelligence Level of Life:
  1. Degeneracy of the Genetic Code – A critical System Intelligence Attribute
  2. The Genetic Code – A Non “Equal Opportunity” Amino Acid Substitution Filter
  3. The Genetic Code – An Intelligent Data Processing System
  4. Complimentary Transversions – A Very Special Case of Mutation
  5. Of Hox Genes and the Big Bang of Evolution
  6. Homology vs. Analogy
  7. Aerobicism, Multicellularism and Sex – Three For the Same Price?
  8. Plausible Operating Scenarios
  9. An Ounce of Prevention
  10. Now Add Variability
  11. The Genetic Code as a Double Threat (Evolution Filter & Error Prevention)
  12. Transition Fossils and Punctuated Evolution
  13. Evolution and the Missing Transitional Fossils
  14. A Quantum Theory of Evolution (QTE)
  15. Conclusions
Ch 14                           A Question of Purpose:
  1. A Turning Point
  2. Use & Purpose
  3. A “Virtual Living Library” (VLL) of Information
  4. The Location of Extraneous Information
  5. Maintaining VLL Information Integrity
  6. Differential Error Correction
  7. The Nature of Sexual Error Correction
  8. Zero Tolerance Error Correction – Where and When?
  9. Kinds of Information and Species Selection
  10. Considerations and Consequences
  11. Approaching A Critical Path
Ch 15                           The Rational Design Hypothesis (RDH):
  1. The Rational Design Hypothesis Concept
  2. Nanotechnology – Engineering At the Molecular Level
  3. Nanotechnology and Biology
  4. The Marvelous Biological System – According to Richard Feynman
  5. Nanotechnology = OoL Methodology
  6. Scientific Relevancy
  7. Testing - One, Two, Three...
  8. Evolution vs. Design
  9. Rational Design vs. Creationism
  10. The Nature of Incontrovertible Proof of Design
  11. Testing – Where to Begin
  12. Revelation Science
  13. Consistency = Credibility
  14. For Whom The Bell Tolls
  15. Conclusions: Where Do We Go From Here
Ch 16                           Loose Ends:
  1. Our Mission
  2. The “Origin of the Designer” Problem
  3. Back to First Principles
  4. Weirdness – A Prime Characteristic of Our Universe
  5. Is It Metaphysics or Physics?
  6. Is It Real, or Anti-Real?
  7. Quantum Theory to The Rescue?
  8. What Is an Observer?
  9. What Is the True Meaning of Reality?
  10. Laying the Origin of the Designer Question to Rest
  11. Closing the Circle
  12. Don't Just Leave Them Hanging
  13. Free At Last?
  14. A Disclaimer of Sorts
Ch 17                           Consequences of the RDH:
  1. For Evolution and Complexity Theory
  2. For Quantum Theory
  3. For Spontaneous Self-Generation
  4. For Panspermia
  5. For Directed Panspermia
  6. For Creationism
         The Difference Between Religious and Scientific Belief
  7. For The Living System (LS)
  8. For Humanity
  9. For SETI and the Drake Equation
  10. For The Existence of Extraterrestrial Intelligence
  11. Genetic Engineering          
  12. Conclusions
Ch 18                           Springs Eternal:
  1. The Rational Design Hypothesis – The Ultimate Message of Hope
  2. The RDH – Something for Everyone?
  3. Hope As Strategy
  4. The Kamikaze Frame of Mind
  5. Hope Springs Eternal – Now, Perhaps With Good Reason
  6. A Magnificent Obsession
  7. We Wish You Happy Trails
  8. Author’s Note
Appendix to Chapter 13:                          
  Mutation Data Tables:
  Table 13 - B, C, D, & E : All Possible Codon Mutations (9 per Codon)
Table 13 - F, G, H, & I : All Complimentary Transversion Mutations
Table 13 - J, K, L, & M: All Transition Mutations
Table 13 - N, O, P, & Q: All Non-Complimentary Transversions
  AmAcid Node Diagrams:
  Figures 1 & 2: Complimentary Transversions
Figures 3 & 4: Transition Mutations
Figures 4 & 5: Non-Complimentary Transversions

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Contact the Author: bryshill@the5thoption.com

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