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  1. #31
    Senior Member Qre:us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Heh, I suppose I was confused, because this ended up in the philosophy section.
    Yeah....I foresaw this confusion as well...but left it up to, well...debate

    Dudes, OP, OP...haha, love the ENTP-missing-a-mundane-details.

    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    PS - I think this was posted in the wrong section, more applicable to the Science & Tech, or Philosophy? I'll let the admins decide.
    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    It seems like somewhat of a mundane question to me, but here is my viewpoint.
    Well, one of the most obvious direct implications I see is to the prolife/prochoice debate.


    I'm not a biologist, but mathematicians have quite a bit of practice with explicitly stating definitions. The purpose of a good definition is to help provide a proper framework for discussion of relevant topics. In this case Biology is the study of life. Therefore if biologists want to study viruses, then it would be useful for them to define viruses as a form of life.
    Specialists study things that is not, for comparative control, too. Does that make virus: 'life' or close-but-no-cigar?

  2. #32
    null Jonny's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    Heh, I suppose I was confused, because this ended up in the philosophy section. It seems like somewhat of a mundane question to me, but here is my viewpoint.

    I'm not a biologist, but mathematicians have quite a bit of practice with explicitly stating definitions. The purpose of a good definition is to help provide a proper framework for discussion of relevant topics. In this case Biology is the study of life. Therefore if biologists want to study viruses, then it would be useful for them to define viruses as a form of life.
    Bah. Biologists study more than just life; they study things relating to life. To believe that they would need to classify a virus as alive in order to study it makes me giggle. I am going to believe you were joking. Also, I never said that definitions aren't essential, just that arguing about them is worthless, unless of course one is attempting to manipulate.
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  3. #33
    Member ilovetrannies's Avatar
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    The definition of life is that it sucks and then you die. Good shit happens. Bad shit happens. Zen and balance is key to keeping your sanity.

  4. #34
    Glowy Goopy Goodness The_Liquid_Laser's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonnyboy View Post
    Bah. Biologists study more than just life; they study things relating to life. To believe that they would need to classify a virus as alive in order to study it makes me giggle. I am going to believe you were joking. Also, I never said that definitions aren't essential, just that arguing about them is worthless, unless of course one is attempting to manipulate.
    I believe you missed my point. I don't care how biologists define life. My point is that they should define it based on whatever definition would make their job easier.

    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    Yeah....I foresaw this confusion as well...but left it up to, well...debate

    Dudes, OP, OP...haha, love the ENTP-missing-a-mundane-details.


    PS - I think this was posted in the wrong section, more applicable to the Science & Tech, or Philosophy? I'll let the admins decide.
    ***

    Well, one of the most obvious direct implications I see is to the prolife/prochoice debate.
    I don't think you realize this, but the OP is vague as hell. That is the reason why I'm confused about this thread. The OP clears up nothing, and the details you are pointing up in the OP explain nothing. Even now you're telling me this thread is about both viruses and abortion. Which is it? What really is the point of this thread? To ask a vague question just to see where the discussion goes?
    My wife and I made a game to teach kids about nutrition. Please try our game and vote for us to win. (Voting period: July 14 - August 14)
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  5. #35
    Senior Member Qre:us's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The_Liquid_Laser View Post
    I don't think you realize this, but the OP is vague as hell. That is the reason why I'm confused about this thread. The OP clears up nothing, and the details you are pointing up in the OP explain nothing. Even now you're telling me this thread is about both viruses and abortion. Which is it? What really is the point of this thread? To ask a vague question just to see where the discussion goes?
    To address the question: what is the [universal] definition of life...it was stated in so many words in the OP.

    ...and if we can't have an universal definition, why/why not. (e.g., viruses)

    Debate/discuss. <- point of thread.

    I don't do thought simply for thought but its associations, applications to some aspect of reality, some understanding of reality and how a thought can affect it, so, it becomes an obvious point that if asked, WHY do we need to have an universal definition (I was addressing your point of why this question is [to me] not mundane)...hence, the topic of abortion came about.

    A thought is nothing without associations, without spurring of other thoughts, esp. when put forth to be discussed, debated. One just has to have the skill to follow along to understand the relevance, if justification is obviously presented.

  6. #36
    Dreaming the life onemoretime's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Qre:us View Post
    Using the above list, a question: Are viruses alive?
    Only as much as DNA is alive. Both are forms of chemically-coded information.

    The bigger question is life one singular classification without any comparison, or is it simply a subclass of a larger type of chemical organization? Maybe one called "self-replicating media"?

    It all comes down to energy in the end, anyway.

  7. #37
    Senior Member sculpting's Avatar
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    past viruses you have several other forms of self relicating material.

    transposons hop from gene to gene by using the host replication mechanisms. Millions of bases of our genetic code are transposons.

    Prions are self aggregating protein material. So who cares cause some protein clumps up? happens all the time. Except when one clumpled protein from a cow gets eaten by certain folks it induces proteins in thier brain to clump as well-thus mad cow disease. Far more simple than viruses but self replicating.

    but "self replicating media" could also include chemicals that when mixed will form crystals correct? The crystals will keep forming as long as there is a source of liquid to pull from.

    what is past chemicals-individual atoms? which will react according to laws of thermodynamics and produce compunds.

    there is no end.

  8. #38
    HAHHAHHAH! INTJ123's Avatar
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    Words can't do it justice. Living and experiencing life gives much greater understanding than a mere sentence or paragraph describing it.

  9. #39
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    I've always wondered about other forms of intelligence. Maybe there are things out there that are not, by definition, "alive", but have still manifested into intelligence.

    If we really are the product of abiogenesis, then their may be other elemental formations in which intelligence can arise. (Like robots, but produced by natural means).

  10. #40
    Senior Member Phoenix_400's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ilovetrannies View Post
    The definition of life is that it sucks and then you die. Good shit happens. Bad shit happens. Zen and balance is key to keeping your sanity.
    I'm a firm believer in maintaining balance in one's life.

    However, I always thought the definition of Life was "Its sexually transmitted and always fatal".

    Gotta love knowledge gained from witty t-shirts

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