A possible definition of life.

Bill House bhouse at dazsi.com
Wed Apr 16 21:56:43 EST 1997

Matthew Stanfield <mattst at cogs.susx.ac.uk> wrote in article
<5j2io1$an6 at infa.central.susx.ac.uk>...
> "Life (on Earth) consists of all things built by DNA."

What is it about DNA that qualifies it over, say carbon, as the chemical
compound whose properties define life?  If some other entity exhibited those
properties, would not it also be considered alive?  

IMO, life is not a physical compound, but an emergent phenomenon of complex
entities that allows them to replicate, transform energy to locally reduce
entropy, and to evolve new behaviors and phenotypes that enhance their ability
to replicate and transform energy. This probably goes against convention, but I
happen to think convention is to specific to biological systems.

Bill House
bhouse at dazsi.com

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