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View Diary: Does technology have a "life of it's own" or are we in control? (72 comments)

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  •  A central element of homeostasis is feedback (1+ / 0-)
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    don mikulecky

    control.  And, more importantly, the ability of the agent to construct internal models that adequately represent the disturbances that must get rejected.

    As for the contention about DNA, with genetic codes, being useless without protein enzymes that are "created by" the same codes.  How about early proto-cells?  Early proto-ribosomes could not have been the precise protein-making agents that they are today.  Instead, sloppily made proteins would likely have been more the norm.  There would invariably have been far more non-specific binding and the proto-cells must have used alternative means in order to regulate it in order to have any sort of robustness.  What would have been the catalytic agents?  Most likely early analogs to mRNA, iRNA, and the like.

    As for the genetic code, in early proto-cells, there were likely many genetic codes.  And, the benefits yielded by rampant horizontal gene exchange likely drove such proto-cells towards having a universal genetic code.  While the prior "frozen accident" hypothesis is a competing hypothesis (to the aforementioned one), as we better resolve the root of the "tree of life," it will likely get falsified.  The very fact that the mimi-virus has a rather ancient trna synthetase gene already points to all sorts of mysteries that might soon enough have reasonable explanations.

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