growing wealth of evidence from fossil
genetics, biochemistry, and field biology is clarifying the
picture of how life evolved on Earth over the last three billion
years and how it continues to change. Missing
links are being filled in and evolution is being
in action.Now researchers are beginning to discover how
to leverage the power of modern computing simulations to explore
pressing questions in the field of evolutionary biology.
Scientists at the University of Minnesota's Institute of Technology
have just completed a study which uses hydrodynamic simulations of
fish to help understand how their environment helped shape their
evolution.Civil Engineering Professor Fotis Sotiropoulos and
postdoctoral researcher Iman Borazjani began the project over five
years ago, looking to simulate the model fish in a massive parallel
computer cluster. The work was quite
challenging. Describes Professor
Sotiropoulos, "It was a challenge because we had never simulated
anything living before."However, the pair were able to
use their strong knowledge of hydrodynamics to develop a plan of
attack. They created four swimming fish -- two computational
mackerels (one that beat its tail like a mackerel and a second that
wriggled like an eel) and two eels (one that wriggled and another
that beat its tail like a mackerel). They then sent the digital
fish out through a variety of water conditions, varying the fluid
velocity-dependent viscosity. They then examined the fish
traveling at various tail-beat speeds and looked at the efficiency of
the motion.What they found was that fish with inappropriate
tail motions or body shapes moved less efficiently, which in the real
world would equate to tiring quicker. Tiring quicker could lead
to losing the chance to catch prey or, worse yet, being eaten.
In slow currents (such as a reef) the eel shape was preferred, while
in fast currents (open sea) mackerel shape was preferred.Thus
the research shows important evidence of how selective pressures may
have given rise to fish in their modern shape. It also
demonstrates how computer simulations can be used to better
understand natural selection and the course of evolution.Professor
Sotiropoulos is quite pleased with the results. He states,
"From these experiments, we can deduce that real mackerel and
eel's swimming styles are perfectly adapted to the hydrodynamic
environments that they inhabit."The study
was published in
of Experimental Biology.The
research not only offers insight into evolution, but could also be
used to create more efficient swimming robots, according to the
quote: We can trace the geneology of organisms through mammals, reptilian, to insects and even single-cell organisms.
quote: why do humans and giraffes both share the same number of neck vertebrae for example?
quote: we have direct observable evidence for evolution
quote: and a book which contradicts iteself on a regular basis
quote: Do we? Part of science is to study the other conclusions. The THEORY of evolution has been completely destroyed by biased and unethical research. To say otherwise would be really foolish.
quote: I have never seen a contradiction. Some people may interpret a contradiction, show me one....
quote: Why does it need to be proven? Anyone with half a brain already knew, the people who don't believe that evolution happened and is still happening are the sorts who don't want to believe........
quote: The people who don't believe that evolution happened and is still happening are the sorts who don't want to believe.
quote: To prove gravity, you would need to prove that every object of mass is attracted to every other object of mass to a level of precision not possible because at some point our observations approximate the time, space and energy involved. So we don't know that gravity always works, just that it has always worked in all of our observed tests. To that end, we consider gravity practically fact, but it's still "just a theory".
quote: Microevolution is differentiated from macro, otherwise it wouldn't have the "micro" in front of the word.
quote: Using that argument, you obviously don't believe in Gravity, the world is in fact flat, modern modicin is a scam, the moon landing was rigged, etc.
quote: Evolution != Abiogenisis; two totally differnet fields of study. One seeks the origin of life, the other seeks to understand how life has changed and diversified.
quote: All you need to prove there was no creation event is to prove that a certain combination of protiens can be created to do nothing but replicate endlessly. Once that is accomplished, you have essentially proved that random chance can in fact create life, and you have created a starting point for evolution to take hold.
quote: Why are we one of the only mammals that hair only covers part of our bodies?
quote: What they found was that fish with inappropriate tail motions or body shapes moved less efficiently