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The Only Process?

While reading Richard Dawkins’s classic book, “The God Delusion“, I found myself pausing after reading this snippet:

“…natural selection: the process which, as far as we know, is the only process ultimately capable of generating complexity out of simplicity. The theory of natural selection is genuinely simple. So is the origin from which it starts. That which it explains, on the other hand, is complex almost beyond telling: more complex than anything we can imagine…” – Richard Dawkins

Of course, Mr. Dawkins is talking about the evolution of natural, biological systems over time. But isn’t this also true for man-made, socio-technical systems?

natural selection

  1. Mark Wilson
    January 21, 2013 at 8:32 am

    Yes!

  2. January 21, 2013 at 11:21 am

    Funny, I’d say a junior developer is far quicker at turning something simple into something incredibly complex. 🙂

    That being said, Igor Lobanov posted an interesting discussion of Darwinian evolution vs “Intelligent Design” in terms of systems: http://ilobanov.wordpress.com/2012/06/08/can-an-architecture-emerge/. It points out some of the inefficiencies inherent in natural selection.

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