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  1. William A. Dembski (2002). No Free Lunch Why Specified Complexity Cannot Be Purchased Without Intelligence.
    Darwin's greatest accomplishment was to show how life might be explained as the result of natural selection. But does Darwin's theory mean that life was unintended? William A. Dembski argues that it does not. In this book Dembski extends his theory of intelligent design. Building on his earlier work in The Design Inference (Cambridge, 1998), he defends that life must be the product of intelligent design. Critics of Dembski's work have argued that evolutionary algorithms show that life can be explained (...)
     
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  2.  22
    William Albert Dembski (1996). The Design Inference: Eliminating Chance Through Small Probabilities. Dissertation, University of Illinois at Chicago
    Shoot an arrow at a wall, and then paint a target around it so that the arrow sticks squarely in the bull's eye. Alternatively, paint a fixed target on a wall, and then shoot an arrow so that it sticks squarely in the bull's eye. How do these situations differ? In both instances the precise place where the arrow lands is highly improbable. Yet in the one, one can do no better than attribute the arrow's landing to chance, whereas in (...)
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  3. Michael Ruse, William A. Dembski, Matt Young, Taner Edis & John Brockman (2006). The Evolution-Creation Struggle. Journal of the History of Biology 39 (3):607-635.
     
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  4. William Dembski, The Design Revolution: Answering the Toughest Questions About Intelligent Design.
    Mainstream modern science, with its analytical methods and its “objective” teachings, is the dominant force in modern culture. If science simply discovered and taught the truth about reality, who could object? But mainstream science does not simply “discover the truth”; instead it relies in part on a set of unscientific, false philosophical presuppositions as the basis for many of its conclusions. Thus, crucial aspects of what modern science teaches us are simply shabby philosophy dressed up in a white lab coat.
     
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  5. William Dembski, Intelligent Design.
    Intelligent design begins with a seemingly innocuous question: Can objects, even if nothing is known about how they arose, exhibit features that reliably signal the action of an intelligent cause? To see what’s at stake, consider Mount Rushmore. The evidence for Mount Rushmore’s design is direct—eyewitnesses saw the sculptor Gutzon Borglum spend the better part of his life designing and building this structure. But what if there were no direct evidence for Mount Rushmore’s design? What if humans went extinct and (...)
     
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  6. William A. Dembski, Becoming a Disciplined Science: Prospects, Pitfalls, and Reality Check for ID.
    Recently I asked a well-known ID sympathizer what shape he thought the ID movement was in. I raised the question because, after some initial enthusiasm on his part three years ago, his interest seemed to have flagged. Here is what he wrote: An enormous amount of energy has been expended on "proving" that ID is bogus, "stealth creationism," "not science," and so on. Much of this, ironically, violates the spirit of science. The proof of the pudding is in the eating. (...)
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  7. William A. Dembski & Michael Ruse (eds.) (2004). Debating Design From Darwin to Dna. Monograph Collection (Matt - Pseudo).
    In this book, first published in 2004, William Dembski, Michael Ruse, and other prominent philosophers provide a comprehensive balanced overview of the debate concerning biological origins - a controversial dialectic since Darwin published The Origin of Species in 1859. Invariably, the source of controversy has been 'design'. Is the appearance of design in organisms the result of purely natural forces acting without prevision or teleology? Or, does the appearance of design signify genuine prevision and teleology, and, if so, is that (...)
     
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  8. William Dembski, The Logical Underpinnings of Intelligent Design.
    For many natural scientists, design, conceived as the action of an intelligent agent, is not a fundamental creative force in nature. Rather, material mechanisms, characterized by chance and necessity and ruled by unbroken laws, are thought sufficient to do all nature’s creating. Darwin’s theory epitomizes this rejection of design.
     
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  9. William A. Dembski (1998). Mere Creation Science, Faith & Intelligent Design.
  10. William Dembski (2006). In Defence of Intelligent Design. In Philip Clayton (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Science. OUP Oxford 715-731.
    Accession Number: ATLA0001712271; Hosting Book Page Citation: p 715-731.; Physical Description: il ; Language(s): English; General Note: Bibliography: p 728-731.; Issued by ATLA: 20130825; Publication Type: Essay.
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  11. William Dembski, Searching Large Spaces: Displacement and the No Free Lunch Regress.
    Searching for small targets in large spaces is a common problem in the sciences. Because blind search is inadequate for such searches, it needs to be supplemented with additional information, thereby transforming a blind search into an assisted search. This additional information can be quantified and indicates that assisted searches themselves result from searching higher-level search spaces–by conducting, as it were, a search for a search. Thus, the original search gets displaced to a higher-level search. The key result in this (...)
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  12. William Dembski, Intelligent Design and the Problem of Evil.
    Intelligent design—the idea that a designing intelligence plays a substantive and empirically significant role in the natural world—no longer sits easily in our intellectual environment. Science rejects it for invoking an unnecessary teleology. Philosophy rejects it for committing an argument from ignorance. And theology rejects it for, as Edward Oakes contends, making the task of theodicy impossible.1 I want in this lecture to address all these concerns but especially the last. For many thinkers, particularly religious believers, intelligent design exacerbates the (...)
     
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  13. William Dembski, Evolution of Biological Information.
    National Cancer Institute, Frederick Cancer Research and Development Center, Laboratory of Experimental and Computational Biology, PO Box B, Frederick, MD 21702-1201, USA..
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  14. William Dembski, Gauging Intelligent Design's Success.
    Proponents of intelligent design have been remarkably successful, at least in the United States, in creating a cultural movement. They have also been remarkably successful at exasperating a scientific and intellectual world that dismisses intelligent design as the latest incarnation of creationism—more sophisticated than previous incarnations to be sure, but with many of the old faults. In this paper I want to focus on intelligent design’s merits as an intellectual project. I will show that the questions it raises are legitimate (...)
     
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  15. William A. Dembski, Three Frequently Asked Questions About Intelligent Design.
    Intelligent design is the science that studies how to detect intelligence. Recall astronomer Carl Sagan’s novel Contact about the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (or SETI). Sagan based the SETI researchers’ methods of design detection on scientific practice. Real-life SETI researchers have thus far failed to detect designed signals from distant space. But if they encountered such a signal, as the astronomers in Sagan’s novel did, they too would infer design. Intelligent design research currently focuses on developing reliable methods of design (...)
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  16. William Dembski, Infinite Universe or Intelligent Design?
    To reach the conclusion that the universe is infinite, physicists (a) make some observations; (b) fit those observations to some mathematical model; (c) find that the neatest model that accommodates the data extrapolates to an infinite universe; (d) conclude that the universe is infinite. In my presentation I will examine the logic by which physicists reach this conclusion. Specifically, I will show that there is no way to empirically justify the move from (b) to (c). An infinite universe should therefore (...)
     
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  17. William Dembski, Intelligent Design is Not Optimal Design.
    I was recently on an NPR program with skeptic Michael Shermer and paleontologist Donald Prothero to discuss intelligent design. As the discussion unfolded, it became clear that they were using the phrase "intelligent design" in a way quite different from how the emerging intelligent design community is using it.
     
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  18.  38
    William Dembski (2005). Specification: The Pattern That Signifies Intelligence. Philosophia Christi 7 (2):299-343.
    Specification denotes the type of pattern that highly improbable events must exhibit before one is entitled to attribute them to intelligence. This paper analyzes the concept of specification and shows how it applies to design detection (i.e., the detection of intelligence on the basis of circumstantial evidence). Always in the background throughout this discussion is the fundamental question of Intelligent Design (ID): Can objects, even if nothing is known about how they arose, exhibit features that reliably signal the action of (...)
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  19. William Dembski, Is Intelligent Design a Form of Natural Theology?
    There are good and bad reasons to be skeptical of intelligent design. Perhaps the best reason is that intelligent design has yet to establish itself as a thriving scientific research program. Thus far philosophical, theoretical, and foundational concerns have tended to predominate. From the vantage of design advocates, this simply reflects the earliness of the hour and the need to clear the decks before a shift of paradigms can take place. Give us more time, and we'll deliver on the program. (...)
     
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  20. William A. Dembski & Jonathan Wells (2008). How to Be an Intellectually Fulfilled Atheist. Intercollegiate Studies Institute.
    “Although atheism might have been logically tenable before Darwin,” writes Richard Dawkins, “Darwin made it possible to be an intellectually fulfilled atheist.” This little book shows that atheism must seek intellectual fulfillment elsewhere decisively demonstrating the need for intelligence in explaining life’s origin. This is the best overview of why traditional origin-of-life research has crashed and burned and why intelligent design is necessary to explain the high-tech engineering inside the cell. It is no longer possible to be an intellectually fulfilled (...)
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  21. William Dembski (2003). The Chance of the Gaps. In Neil A. Manson (ed.), God and Design: The Teleological Argument and Modern Science. Routledge
     
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  22. William Dembski, Preface to Paperback Edition of No Free Lunch.
    Five years have elapsed since the publication of No Free Lunch. In that time, intelligent design (ID) has gone from a little-known and marginalized alternative to standard evolutionary theory to a national and international phenomenon that everyone with an interest in the biological origins debate is talking about. Gone is the former dichotomy between creationism and evolution. Leaving aside creationism’s insistence on treating Genesis as a scientific text and treating the detection and application of design as a research tool for (...)
     
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  23. William Dembski, Hume, Reid, and Signs of Intelligence.
    David Hume’s critique of intelligent design is vastly overrated. Nevertheless, his critique, especially at the hands of his contemporary disciples, has been highly effective at shutting down discussion about design. I want here to review Hume’s critique, indicate how modern disciples have updated it, and then describe the response to Hume by his contemporary Thomas Reid. That response in my view is decisive. Would that more philosophers studied it. Hume did not demolish design. Reid demolished Hume.
     
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  24. William Dembski, The Fantasy Life of Richard Wein: A Response to a Response.
    Talk.origins has officially archived Richard Wein's critique of my book No Free Lunch at http://www.talkorigins.org/design/faqs/nfl. I responded on the ISCID website at http://www.iscid.org/papers/Dembski_ObsessivelyCriticized_050902.pdf. Wein has now responded to that response at http://www.talkorigins.org/design/faqs/nfl/replynfl.html. This is my response to Wein's latest. My response here is copyright © 2002 and may be reprinted only for personal use.
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  25. William Dembski, Obsessively Criticized but Scarcely Refuted: A Response to Richard Wein.
    Talk.origins has now officially archived Richard Wein's critique of my book No Free Lunch at http://www.talkorigins.org/design/faqs/nfl. Prior to that, the critique went through several revisions. I take it the critique is now substantially finished. In any case, I am responding to Version 1.0 last modified 04.23.02. My response here is copyright © 2002 and may be reprinted only for personal use.
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  26.  34
    William Dembski (2004). Uncommon Dissent: Intellectuals Who Find Darwinism Unconvincing. Isi Books.
    Motto: “The purpose of freedom is to create it for others,” Bernard Malamud, The Fixer Dedication: To the memory of Michael Polanyi, for freeing inquiry from ideology..
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  27. William Dembski, Rebuttal to Reports by Opposing Expert Witnesses.
    2.1 The Myth of Religious Neutrality ………………..………..………………… 2 2.2 ID and Creationism …………………………………………………………… 7 2.3 Methodological Materialism ……………………………….………………… 9 2.4 ID’s Contribution to Science ……………………………..………………… 13 3 Robert Pennock ………………...…..………………………….……..…………….. 17 4 John Haught ………………………………………………….……..…..………….. 23 5 Kevin Padian …………………………………………………..…….…..………….. 27 6 Kenneth Miller …………...……………………………………………..………….. 34..
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  28. William Dembski, The Conservation of Information: Measuring the Cost of Successful Search.
    Many spaces that need to be searched in the sciences are too unwieldy for random search to stand any hope of success. Success instead requires a nonrandom search. But how does one find a nonrandom search that stands a good chance of success? Even to pose the question this way suggests that such nonrandom searches do not magically materialize but need themselves to be discovered by a process of search. The question then naturally arises whether such a “search for a (...)
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  29. William A. Dembski, Random Predicate Logic I: A Probabilistic Approach to Vagueness.
    Predicates are supposed to slice reality neatly in two halves, one for which the predicate holds, the other for which it fails. Yet far from being razors, predicates tend to be dull knives that mangle reality. If reality is a tomato and predicates are knives, then when these knives divide the tomato, plenty of mush remains unaccounted for. Of course some knives are sharper than others, just as some predicates are less vague than others. “x is water” is certainly sharper (...)
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  30. William A. Dembski (1999). Are We Spiritual Machines? First Things 96:25-31.
    For two hundred years materialist philosophers have argued that man is some sort of machine. The claim began with French materialists of the Enlightenment such as Pierre Cabanis, Julien La Mettrie, and Baron d’Holbach (La Mettrie even wrote a book titled Man the Machine). Likewise contemporary materialists like Marvin Minsky, Daniel Dennett, and Patricia Churchland claim that the motions and modifications of matter are sufficient to account for all human experiences, even our interior and cognitive ones. Whereas the Enlightenment philosophes (...)
     
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  31. William Dembski, Irreducible Complexity Revisited.
    Michael Behe’s concept of irreducible complexity, and in particular his use of this concept to critique Darwinism, continues to come under heavy fire from the biological community. The problem with Behe, so Darwinists inform us, is that he has created a problem where there is no problem. Far from constituting an obstacle to the Darwinian mechanism of random variation and natural selection, irreducible complexity is thus supposed to be eminently explainable by this same mechanism. But is it really? It’s been (...)
     
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  32.  35
    William A. Dembski (1991). Randomness by Design. Noûs 25 (1):75-106.
    “Anyone who considers arithmetical methods of producing random digits is, of course, in a state of sin.”1 John von Neumann’s famous dictum points an accusing finger at all who set their ordered minds to engender disorder. Much as in times past thieves, pimps, and actors carried on their profession with an uneasy conscience, so in this day scientists who devise random number generators suffer pangs of guilt. George Marsaglia, perhaps the preeminent worker in the field, quips when he asks his (...)
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    William A. Dembski, God's Use of Chance.
    In God, Chance and Purpose, statistician David Bartholomew chides Christians who cling to, in his words, a “naive orthodoxy.” Such Christians view God as exhibiting a set of perfections (especially omniscience and omnipotence) and as satisfying a set of propositions (a creed). Such a view is, according to Bartholomew, unworthy of God. In place of a “naive orthodoxy,” he therefore proposes a “critical orthodoxy.” At the center of his “critical orthodoxy” is the skeptical claim that “all knowledge is uncertain, in (...)
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  34. William Dembski, If Only Darwinists Scrutinized Their Own Work as Closely: A Response to "Erik".
    An Internet persona known as "Erik" reviewed those aspects of my book No Free Lunch dealing with the Law of Conservation of Information and specificational resources. Erik's review is titled "On Dembski's Law of Conservation of Information" and is available at http://www.talkreason.org/articles/dembski_LCI.pdf. I respond to the review here.
     
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  35. William A. Dembski, Why President Bush Got It Right About Intelligent Design By.
    Wisdom -- because he understands that ideas are best taught not by giving them a monopoly (which is how evolutionary theory is currently presented in all high school biology textbooks) but by being played off against well-supported competing ideas.
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  36. William Dembski, The Pragmatic Nature of Mathematical Inquiry.
    In 1926 Hermann Weyl’s Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science appeared in Oldenbourg’s Handbuch der Philosophie. At the time Hilbert’s formalist program to “eradicate via proof theory all the foundational questions of mathematics” was in full swing. As a pupil of Hilbert, Weyl was looking to the complete and ultimate success of Hilbert’s program, a confidence evident in Weyl’s treatment of the foundations of mathematics in the original version of Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science. But in an appendix to (...)
     
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  37. William A. Dembski, Skepticism's Prospects for Unseating Intelligent Design.
  38. William Dembski, Ten Questions to Ask Your Biology Teacher About Design.
    Professor Will Provine teaches a course for incoming freshman at Cornell University. In it, he contends that Darwin’s theory of evolution removes all rational basis for believing in the existence of a benevolent God, much less the God of Christianity. For Provine, “evolution is the greatest engine of atheism ever invented,” As evidence for this claim, he need look no further than the success of his course at producing new atheists.
     
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  39. William Dembski, Challenging Materialism's "Chokehold" on Neuroscience.
    In the epilogue to The Mind and the Brain , we read: "Finally, after a generation or more in which biological materialism has had neuroscience -- indeed, all the life sciences -- in a chokehold, we may at last be breaking free.... Biological materialism did and does have real-world consequences. We feel its reach every time a pharmaceutical company tells us that, to cure shyness (or "social phobia"), we need only reach for a little pill.... Biological materialism is nothing if (...)
     
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  40. William Dembski, An Analysis of Homer Simpson and Stephen Jay Gould.
    Note: The Simpson's, television's popular prime-time cartoon known for its satirical commentary on various social issues, recently took a shot at the creation-evolution debate by featuring Stephen Jay Gould prominently in one of its episodes. Here is Bill Dembski's review and observations of that episode.
     
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  41. William Dembski, Can Functional Logic Take the Place of Intelligent Design? A Response to Walter Thorson.
    Walter Thorson's two articles on the legitimacy and scope of naturalism within science attempt to identify a mediating position between the reductive naturalism of thinkers like Richard Dawkins and the complete rejection of naturalism by thinkers like Phillip Johnson. Thorson rightly notes that the purely mechanistic approach to science characteristic of reductive naturalism is inadequate. Nonetheless, he argues that science still needs naturalism as a methodological or regulative principle. Thorson's methodological naturalism leaves room for teleology in nature, though a teleology (...)
     
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  42.  27
    William Dembski, Why Joe Schmoe Doesn't Buy Evolution.
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  43. William A. Dembski, Elliott Sober's Independent Evidence Requirement for Design.
    In his paper "The Design Argument," Elliott Sober predicts that "human beings will eventually build organisms from nonliving materials."[1] In that case, we could obtain clear evidence that certain organisms resulted from intelligent design whereas earlier we might have thought they were due to a Darwinian process. I consider a similar possibility in chapter 6 of No Free Lunch.
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  44. William Dembski, Why President Bush Got It Right About Intelligent Design by William A. Dembski, August 4, 2005.
    Wisdom -- because he understands that ideas are best taught not by giving them a monopoly (which is how evolutionary theory is currently presented in all high school biology textbooks) but by being played off against well-supported competing ideas.
     
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  45.  24
    William Dembski (2000). What Can We Reasonably Hope For? First Things 15.
    In a memorable scene from the movie The Graduate , Dustin Hoffman’s parents throw him a party to celebrate his graduation from college. The parents’ friends are all there congratulating him and offering advice. What should Hoffman do with his life? One particularly solicitous guest is eager to set him straight. He takes Hoffman aside and utters a single word-- plastics!
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  46. William Dembski, A Primer on Probability for Design Inferences.
    Probabilities are numbers between 0 and 1 that attach to events. Events always occur with respect to a reference class of possibilities. Consider a die with faces 1 through 6. The reference class of possibilities in this case can be represented by the set {1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6}. Any subset of this reference class then represents an event. For instance, the event Eodd, i.e., “an odd number was tossed,” corresponds to {1, 3, 5}. Such an event is said (...)
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  47. William A. Dembski, The Reach of the Cross.
    I want this morning to reflect with you on the Cross of Jesus. In first Corinthians, the Apostle Paul makes a remarkable claim about the Cross. He writes: I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God. For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified. 1 Cor 2:1-2 Why did the Apostle Paul, in coming to the Corinthians, focus (...)
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  48. William A. Dembski, Dealing with the Backlash Against Intelligent Design.
    Why is that? The stakes are now considerably higher. Darwinism: Science or Philosophy? is the proceedings of a symposium that took place at Southern Methodist University in the spring of 1992. The focus of that symposium was Phillip Johnson’s then recently published book Darwin on Trial. At the time, Johnson was a novelty -- a respected professor of criminal law at Cal Berkeley who was raising doubts about evolution. All harmless, good fun, no doubt. And Berkeley has an illustrious history (...)
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  49. William Dembski, Information as a Measure of Variation.
    In many applications of information theory, information measures the reduction of uncertainty that results from the knowledge that an event has occurred. Even so, an item of information learned need not be the occurrence of an event but, rather, the change in probability distribution associated with an ensemble of events. This paper examines the basic account of information, which focuses on events, and reviews how it may be naturally generalized to probability distributions/measures. The resulting information measure is special case of (...)
     
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  50. William Dembski, Transcendence (Entry for New Dictionary of Christian Apologetics).
    The word transcendence comes from the Latin and means literally to climb across or go beyond. To transcend is thus to surpass or excel or move beyond the reach or grasp of something. Sometimes the term is used epistemologically, as when something is beyond the reach of human knowledge. But in reference to the Christian doctrine of God, divine transcendence is used ontologically, and refers to God being beyond anything that is other than God. In Christian theology what’s other than (...)
     
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