Saturday, 21 September 2013

Inventors Have Copied “Most of the Basic Components of Engineering” from Intelligent Solutions in Nature

This planthopper has made headlines recently. Image courtesy of Wikipedia. (Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license).

Joel Kontinen

Can blind Darwinian processes invent intelligent engineering solutions? Some seem to think so. The recent discovery of gears in planthopper legs has given rise to discussion on exactly what has been found in nature.

It appears that much more than gears have been discovered.

Most of the basic components of engineering have been developed in the natural world,” says Alexander Riedel of the State Museum of Natural History in Karlsruhe, Germany, as quoted in Nature news.

And much more than just the basic components are seen in nature. Many of the intelligently designed systems in nature are far better and more effective than the best solutions human inventors and engineers have come up with.

Biomimicry or the imitation of intelligent solutions seen in nature is a flourishing field of hi-tech engineering. Aeroplanes, submarines and robots all use this technology. You can read about some of the solutions here, here and here.

The most obvious explanation for the intelligent solutions seen in nature is that a Master Designer has designed them that way.


Ball, Philip. 2013. Insect leg cogs a first in animal kingdom. Nature news (12 September).