This blog post is in recognition of tomorrow’s 150th anniversary of the publication of Charles Darwin’s book On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life.
I’ve linked to a collection of interesting articles below the fold in honor of Darwin Day:
15 Evolutionary Gems — A resource from Nature for those wishing to spread awareness of evidence for evolution by natural selection.
Putting Evolution to Use in the Everyday World — “Understanding of evolution is fostering powerful technologies for health care, law enforcement, ecology, and all manner of optimization and design problems.”
The Evolutionary Origins of Hiccups and Hernias — “How biological hand-me-downs inherited from fish and tadpoles evolved into human maladies.”
Diversity Revealed: From Atoms to Traits — “Charles Darwin saw that random variations in organisms provide fodder for evolution. Modern scientists are revealing how that diversity arises from changes to DNA and can add up to complex creatures or even cultures.”
Evolution and Tinkering — “If one wanted to play with a comparison, one would have to say that natural selection does not work as an engineer works. It works like a tinkerer — a tinkerer that does not know exactly what he is going to produce but uses whatever he finds around him.”
The Mason’s Apprentice — “Our closest single-celled relatives reveal the origins of the stuff that holds us together.”
Evolution: Converging Lines of Evidence — “As mentioned in the subject refresher article on evolution, Evolution v. Creation, the strength of a theory comes not from a single measurement or a single confirmed prediction, but from the theory’s many predictions being confirmed by many independent tests, samples, and methods.”
Basic Consepts: Allopatry and Sympatry — What is speciation? And how does it occur?
Species, Speciation and the Environment — A historical overview of scientists’ thinking on the process of speciation, along with modern perspectives on speciation.
Observed Instances of Speciation — Description of research into the basis for macroevolution and the origin of biological diversity.
The Origin of Whales and the Power of Independent Evidence — A case-study of evolution with a well-studied example.
What Use is Half a Wing – Evolution of Flight — An article from yours truly piecing together the understanding to-date of the origins of flight.