Friday, May 19, 2006

New job in Indiana

Pictures of Ag Alumni, my new job. I am trying to get the video shots from my camera to load. I don't think that they did here, but it is worth the try. We went to visit this last week and are excited to go. Leila liked the area; the schools seem good and the neighborhoods are nice.

 Posted by Picasa

Thursday, May 11, 2006

We are selling our house.

We just got our house on the market, after my friend Jim decided not to buy our house. Here is a link to the realtor's site with a virtual tour of our house.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Evolutionary humanism

I was listening to NPR yesterday while I was driving. The show was New Dimensions, which is a New Agey show. They had on two self-professed evolutionary humanists. They discussed evolution and the meaning it gave to their lives. They kept using religious terms to discuss the role of evolution. At one point the woman said:

'I was thinking about why people should do good, or be moral, in a world without God, and I realized that evolution had the answer. The story of the creation of the world and our evolution had sacred meaning and that our responsibility was to ritualize it so that people can internalize it. '

How evolution can give them this meaning, I don't understand. I am a plant breeder, officially so when I get my doctorate this summer. Plant breeding is basically applied evolutionary principles and genetics to improve crop yield, disease resistance, etc. Evolution is not the same as artificial selection in that it is not purposeful. As described by Darwin and later evolutionists, there is not a direction to natural selection. It just is. There is no drive in nature to create us, as described by evolution. There is no meaning in our evolution; the biology does not attempt to discover that, nor the motivation. There is no morality in evolution. The changes in gene frequency due to selection or population dynamics hold no clues to how I should treat my brother or wife or children. They just describe the flux in the natural world.

That meaning, to me, can only be described with religion. I am also Mormon and believe in the same time in a religious creation that was purposeful. I still believe in the scientific principles of evolution. At the same time, I detest scientific creationism because it's basic message is that spirituality and creation are scientifically as valid as evolution; that they are equal. This weakens the science because it must fit assumptions of Genesis. This weakens religion because then it can be disproved as easily as Lamarkian inheritance.

My problem with scientific creationism is that it implies that the things we don't understand are "God" and the things we do aren't. I like that there are things like the dinosaurs that aren't explained in the two chapters in Genesis. I like complicated world where given time and isolation new species can evolve. I don't understand how human evolution fits with the Adam and Eve, but I can't deny that the fossil evidence exists and is pretty good. To me these things give the world a beauty and I want to understand them. It does not take away from spirituality nor does it replace it. But at the same time it is a testimony to me that so many things do fit with the Genesis creation story.

Aleah, trying to do a gymnastics routine from her highchair, not her favorite place to be.  Posted by Picasa

One our few bluebonnets that grew this year. We keep meaning to take a family picture in the bluebonnets, and then we procrastinate and they are gone. So here is our bluebonnet picture for the year.  Posted by Picasa

Emily all grown up Posted by Picasa

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Help with SAS

When I run the analysis to calculate repeatability, I used the code:

PROC GLM data = work.gma_must_yield;
class gen env rep;
model seedcotton = gen env rep(env) gen*env/ solution;
random gen env rep(env) gen*env;

This gives me a table at the end of
The GLM Procedure
Source Type III Expected Mean Square
gen Var(Error) + 80.225 Var(gen*env) + 240.67 Var(gen)
env Var(Error) + 47.117 Var(gen*env) + 126.58 Var(rep(env)) + 471.17 Var(env)

rep(env) Var(Error) + 249.89 Var(rep(env))
gen*env Var(Error) + 84.48 Var(gen*env)

If I understand correctly, the numbers preceding Var(comp) are the constants and solving for each V can be done my subtracting the correct MS, dividing by constant. Why are these constants outputted by SAS not equal to those predicted by multiplying the degrees of freedom not associated with Var(comp)?

I also tried using code:
PROC VARCOMP data = work.gma_must_yield method = reml;
class gen env rep;
model seedcotton = gen env rep(env) gen*env;


PROC MIXED data = work.gma_must_yield method = type2 cl;
class gen env rep;
model seedcotton = ;
random gen env rep(env) gen*env;

VARCOMP with reml, ml, type1, type 2 all give different estimates. REML and ML are the highest. Type 1 and Type2 are very similar and contain negative values. These match those I calculate by hand with the constants given with PROC GLM pretty close. Mixed analysis gives the same, as long as the methods are the same. What is PROC GLM using to calculate the constants? Why are they different for gen and env? Should I just ignore them and use results from PROC VARCOMP?

Why can't it all be simple?