We are Machines that Carry Genes

We are survival machines, but 'we' does not mean just people. It embraces all animals, plants, bacteria, and viruses. The total number of survival machines on earth is very difficult to count and even the total number of species is unknown. Taking just insects alone, the number of living species has been estimated at around three million, and the number of individual insects may be a million million million.

Different sorts of survival machine appear very varied on the outside and in their internal organs. An octopus is nothing like a mouse, and both are quite different from an oak tree. Yet in their fundamental chemistry they are rather uniform, and, in particular, the replicators that they bear, the genes, are basically the same kind of molecule in all of us-from bacteria to elephants. We are all survival machines for the same kind of replicator-molecules called DNA-but there are many different ways of making a living in the world, and the replicators have built a vast range of machines to exploit them. A monkey is a machine that preserves genes up trees, a fish is a machine that preserves genes in the water; there is even a small worm that preserves genes in German beer mats. DNA works in mysterious ways.


The Gene's-eye view of evolution is very useful.

Folksonomies: evolution genes

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Evolution (0.962408): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Gene (0.824215): dbpedia | freebase
DNA (0.788307): website | dbpedia | freebase | yago
Organism (0.668125): dbpedia | freebase
Biology (0.650618): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Genome (0.617944): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Plant (0.597491): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc
Animal (0.593582): dbpedia | freebase | opencyc

 The Selfish Gene - First Edition
Books, Brochures, and Chapters>Book:  Dawkins , Richad (1976), The Selfish Gene - First Edition, Oxford, Retrieved on 2007-01-09