Posted: Jan 22, 2011 11:04 am
by Царь Славян
Hack is right about you equivocating here, if one were to define machines as arbitrary arrangements designed by humans to perform mechanical tasks by the manipulation of physical processes, then the flagellum et cetera would be analogous, because one could liken the natural structure that the flagellum is with human designed rotary motors in that they both manipulate forces in a particular way.

When I described flagella as machines, it was because they consist of parts and manipulate forces, the source of the arrangement and its origins are not implicit in the definition. Clear case of equivocation here and depending on how one defines machines both viewpoints are equally valid, there is no scope for disagreement here.
No. He is not right, and you are not right. You said clearly that the scientists called them machines. You specifically said that it's not an analogy, but that they really are machines. I didn't say that either you or those scientists think the flagellum is designed. Only that it can be described as a machine.