Biology and Philosophy 1 (1):5-24 (1986)

John Collier
University of KwaZulu-Natal
Daniel R. Brooks and E. O. Wiley have proposed a theory of evolution in which fitness is merely a rate determining factor. Evolution is driven by non-equilibrium processes which increase the entropy and information content of species together. Evolution can occur without environmental selection, since increased complexity and organization result from the likely capture at the species level of random variations produced at the chemical level. Speciation can occur as the result of variation within the species which decreases the probability of sharing genetic information. Critics of the Brooks-Wiley theory argue that they have abused terminology from information theory and t thermodynamics. In this paper I review the essentials of the theory, and give an account of hierarchical physical information systems within which the theory can be interpreted. I then show how the major conceptual objections can be answered.
Keywords Entropy  evolution  information  thermodynamics
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Reprint years 1986
DOI 10.1007/BF00127087
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Supervenience and Reduction in Biological Hierarchies.John Collier - 1988 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy, Supplementary Volume 14:209.

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