Thursday, 1 March 2012

The unbearable Reproducibility of Life

Songs from an illiterate design

Rocks and planets, acids and proteins are quite placid. They don't do much; everything happened to them but they don't care. A planet is just there. A star burns, it shines and one day will day. Sad? No! Nobody really dies. Because stars, planets, rocks, acids, proteins are not alive. They just hang up. Living beings, not matter how simple they are, are in restless activity. This is to be alive. Now, organisms must keep a dynamic equilibrium to counterbalance a tendency of decay. In fact without constant reconfiguration a living being is deemed to die. First, feed. Energy. The guy who said that money makes the world goes round, forgot plants. They eat light! And they sweat oxygen. If you don't think it's amazing, you deserve to work for a central bank. But living organisms without descendants are pretty much screwed. Well, not really. But the class of living organisms without offspring are pretty much dead, finish, kaput. Nothing moral in this. It's life darling!

Difficult to say whether first conglomerate of proteins arranged a metabolism and then at random one deranged function of that metabolism fucked up, say digestion and came out with reproduction or the contrary. Well, some guys are studying precisely this, but it's not the cake of this talk.

When conglomerates of proteins started to replicate themselves, they ignited reproduction. The first representation was there. And fiction was borne. Yes, fiction. DNA it's like a manuscript. And generation by generation, unintentional mistakes, typos, malevolent demons shuffling amino-acid sentences, produced the vast nonsense of genetic pool. Some of the fake replica became originals of a something else. Try to image this fish: it blows in its bladder, it doesn't give birth to its eggs and stands on its fin. In the league of fish, it definitely sucks. Oh, it's a mammal!

Crazy replicators recombine at random their code and in an orgy of chaos and mistakes, here evolution takes place. Someone had to be quite illiterate to think that his replication system was intentional...

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