Image courtesy Han Braxmeier (released to public domain).
Nancy M. Darrall, in her contribution to In Six Days, illustrates how random variation without intelligence-originated new information cannot yield evolution.
DNA…is analogous to…paper and ink….Anyone who has sat down in front of a blank piece of paper in an examination will be aware of the need for something more than paper and ink in order to pass. We need ideas, concepts, plans, purpose, memory…—in other words, information….An accidental spillage of ink can leave an interesting pattern of dots, lines, and circles…, but we do not see information there….However, when we see writing…, we expect to gain information as we read….Why is this so?….There is no difference between the accidental spillage of ink on the paper and the paper with writing on it as far as the materials are concerned….Where does the information come from?….The information is not a product of the paper or ink, but the thinking mind that has so organized these two things…..If we have written half the examination paper and cannot remember the other key points, no amount of copying and rewording what we have already written will give us more marks from the examiner….The same applies to the origin of information that is coded in the genes. There is nothing special about DNA; it is just a collection of molecules as is paper and ink. DNA molecules can be strung out in a line, copied, and still not contain information. It needs a thinking mind to design the cells of living things and then to commit that design in coded form to the DNA, so that each organism with new and different structures needs the addition of further coded information.
—Nancy M. Darrall, in In Six Days, edited by John F. Ashton, 168-9.