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Wed, Jun 20 2007 50 Luck If you made one mistake and died for it,
you are very lucky.

You lived longer then the average in your species.

Most creatures born will die before they had the chance to make the first mistake.

For example, in a violent sweep of a bird's nest by the wind,
where one egg happened to have been left intact,
it is shear luck that will decide which
egg gets to stay alive.

The eggs are all about the same,
and have no advantage over one another,
to better survive this situtation.

Such is the case with all neweborns in nature,
plants and animals alike.

It is rare, but it is important to note,
that in some cases, the eggs are quite different
then one another.
For example, some might have a harder shell
than others.

In this case, the harder shelled eggs have a better
chance of surviving.

It is more likely then,
that the egg that survived is one of the harder ones,
yet several hard shell eggs also died,
even though they have not made the mistake
of having a soft shell.

If the shell of the egg is different from one egg to another,
we say it has high variation, or low perfection.

The probabilities of luck and its effect on the evolution
of species can be calculated and observed.
The results in this respect are sometimes called: Genetic Drift.

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Wed, Jun 20 2007 55 Variation Varaiations are the differences between the individual cheetahs.
Since all cheetahs are perfect, they also all look alike.

It is difficult to tell them apart,
because all their qualities are perfect for the territory,
and so they are all almost the same,
among the individual cheetahs.

But they are not exactly the same, ever.

Lets us take an example.

The cheetah is known as the only cat in nature not to be able
to retract its claws. (Nails).

Since we know the cheetahs are nearly perfect in all respects,
they must have all nails of much the same length.
The perfect length nail.

If tomorrow a cheetah is born with a nail slighly longer,
or shorter for that matter,
than this cheetah is not fit to survive in the territory
as well as all the other cheetahs.

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Wed, Jun 20 2007 60 Mutations How did this cheetah come about to have such a deformed
fingernail to cause its early death?

Well, lets ignore for the moment the story of the Orangutan.
We will get to him next.

With the perfect cheetahs, the new born cheetahs are supposed to all have the correct fingernails.
Otherwise, how can we say they are perfect?

When mother and father cheetah replicate,
they do not always do an exact job of copying
all the charachters to the baby cheetah.

A mistake in the copying of the plan of the body,
can cause a nail to grow a bit too long or too short.

We call this mistake a Mutation.

New mutations occur all the time.

But since the cheetahs are already perfect,
all mutations are bad for survival,
and so when death comes along,
it will almost always pick up the mutations first.

And death does come along plenty.

This much we have already calculated with us humans and the cockroaches.

Evolution is very effective in exterminating mutations,
and like all else, will select only the very few that are beneficial to their individual owner body.

So for the cheetah for instance,
since the time we called it a Cheetah,
there have been many many mutations with many cheetahs.
None of those survived.

Laws of Variation
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Wed, Jun 20 2007 65 Orangutan Darwin looked at some orangutans,
and noticed something very odd:

The hands of the individual orangutans are noticibly very
different from one another.

This means that the orangutans can not possibly
all be as perfect as our cheetahs.
If they are so different than one another,
even if just in the shape and length of
their huge hands,
then some orangutans must have better hands than others,
and so they are not all perfect.

Not only that, when father and mother orangutan
replicate a new baby orangutan,
his new hands will also surely be different than all
the others.
After all, his mother and father did not have the same
hands to begin with.

But if the orangutans were ever perfect,
than the struggle for existence would have kept
them perfect.

And so we know,
that they were not perfect to begin with.

In fact, they were probably perfect a long time ago.
perfect for some other territory, or some other climate.
Then, and there,
they were probably like any other
ordinary hands of other apes,
which among the other individuals in the same species,
all look about the same.

Then something happened.
It could be just a change in the territory,
that made the very small differences in the hands
be selected suddenly as better,
and so cause baby orangutans to continue
carrying the genes of hands that are different,
blending with the rest,
creating much variation.

It is also possible that a small chance mutation
was somehow beneficial for survival,
and so it stuck around to the next generation.
Some of the new born Orangutans had some of this
new fine quality, and some not.
Again, there will be high variation.

This is how we came to the present day,
with the hands of the orangutan still imperfect.

Death comes just as quickly, and the better orangutans
with the better hands will survive.

In time, the perfect hands will be selected and remain,
while the lesser hands will disappear.

By then the hands will all look alike.
We will then call the hands of the orangutan perfect again.

Variation and perfection in nature are exact opposites.
The higher the variation, the lower the perfection,
and vice versa.

Laws of Variation
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