Friday, March 21, 2008

ITT: I disprove the second law of thermodynamics

Right. So we all know that a favorite Creationist argument is to say that the second law of thermodynamics disproves evolution and the big bang.

Hoshit!

First let's take a look at the usual definition:
The Second Law of thermodynamics says that everything tends to go from an ordered state, to a disordered state. Thus, there is no way that life (order) could have risen from a pre-biotic soup (disorder) or even increased in complexity (order) as it supposedly evolved.

Similarly, the Big Bang must be wrong because it says that the universe started off in an explosion (disordered) and spontaneously formed galaxies (ordered).
Hm. That definition that creationists use so much seems to be missing something....

Oh yeah! That bit about closed systems and energy not being put into the system! We'll let's add that back in and start testing the second law out in a thought experiment.

Let's imagine I have a pot of water. If we take a look at water at a molecular level, it's rather disordered. The arrangement of the molecules in regards to one another has no rhyme or reason.

As I just noted, if you add energy to the system (boil it), using the creationist definition with that bit about adding energy actually added, this would indicate that we should see more "order". However, the exact opposite is the case. If energy is added (ie, heat) the water turns to gas and there is even less order. In the other case, if energy is removed from the system, it becomes ice which, on a molecular level, is a highly "ordered" crystalline structure.

The second law got it backwards! Looks like I've disproven it.

I can has Nobel prize now?

Note: This is not actually intended as a proof against the second law. Rather, it's a demonstration of how pathetic the creationist definition really is. For a more comprehensive definition, take lots of math and science and eventually a few courses on thermodynamics. Or just visit the Talk Origins page on it (which still requires a bit of Calculus understanding).

Mike Crichton said...

Another example is the operation of a common household refrigerator. The Second Law of Thermodynamics implies that energy can never spontaneously flow from an area of low heat to an area of higher heat, yet the refrigerator continues to work. When the Standard Creationist Troll can explain to me how the refrigerator doesn't actually violate thermodynamics, but that biological evolution does, well, I'll be impressed.

Mike Crichton said...

Another example is the operation of a common household refrigerator. The Second Law of Thermodynamics implies that energy can never spontaneously flow from an area of low heat to an area of higher heat, yet the refrigerator continues to work. When the Standard Creationist Troll can explain to me how the refrigerator doesn't actually violate thermodynamics, but that biological evolution does, well, I'll be impressed.

Barry Evans said...

Always amusing how they think it disproves evolution when it doesn't. And even if it did, how exactly do they justify that it proves Genesis and Creationism? It's a flawed argument that shows they haven't got a clue about science.

Exodus771 said...

Quite funny that energy by itself will not increase information - and that is what evolution is about, is it not? Starts from a single cell (very complicated item) and then somehow through random, non- directional "mutation"(which is in almost all cases detrimental, and never goes beyond certain limits - ask your local farmer-) develops into something fully functioning without any transitional forms in the fossil record (not referring to the proven hoaxes or manufactured "evidence" (the English word "lies/liar" ring a bell?). Despite the latest technology used and countless efforts, life from non-living material has never occurred - they had to use parts of a living cell.
And you guys believe such balderdash?

Anonymous said...

Science? That thing created by man which is flawed? There are MANY things science will NEVER prove or explain.

DAVID C said...

thermodynamics, all systems have "loss', right. I have one word that disproves that notion; seeds.