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Everything posted by MM6

  1. Sorry route89, but I have to agree Mokele, this seems like an example of pareidolia. Your image resembling an angel fish does resemble it in a vague way. It also looks like a tree. There are so many different biological forms that your bound to have an image that looks like something. I don't see that as being useful. The blob that you have paired next to the horseshoe crab is really reaching. A more convincing argument could be made if there was a strong relationship between the inputs of your equation and the cladistic relationship of the output images/"organisms." For example, with a cluster of inputs that yield "crustacean-like" images, a relatively small shift in the input values in one direction would produce hexapods, while a shift in the other would produce myriapods. Now that I'm thinking more about it, this would be misleading too, as morphology is not a strong predictor of evolutionary history/relatedness (and consequently pattern development). I don't see how your program predicts anything relevant in organismal pattern development because of it's sole focus on morphological similarities.
  2. Ah, that's too bad. Thanks for the reply.
  3. Just curious why there is no earth science or planetary sciences forum. Do we need a certain number of threads in that area to warrant collating them into such a forum?
  4. Something I never understood about the concept of time travel. Where are the previous states of the universe stored? The information must be preserved in order for the time traveler to immerse himself in that previous state of the universe. I've searched many threads here and haven't seen this addressed.
  5. I don't see how this would allow backward time travel. Maybe the slowing of time in that reference frame. Can anyone provide more details?
  6. Here's a list of de Grey's publications. Most look like review papers. A lot are available directly in PDF. http://www.sens.org/index.php?pagename=mj_sens_scientific Scroll down to Mitochondrial mutations and their effects: Merged post follows: Consecutive posts mergedHis interest in telomeres/telomerase seems directed mostly at cancer prevention/therapy (getting telomeres to shorten in cancer cells). Search for telomere within the body of the webpage.
  7. This paper shows that small chronic doses of oxidative stress may protect against larger acute doses. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090528203726.htm Journal reference: 1. Ryan Kelley, Trey Ideker. Genome-Wide Fitness and Expression Profiling Implicate Mga2 in Adaptation to Hydrogen Peroxide. PLoS Genetics, 2009; 5 (5): e1000488 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000488 Some people here may find this of particular interest, considering the recent aging/anti-aging threads.
  8. ASU (Arizona State University) has an excellent astrobiology program and a new "Origins Initiative," headed by Lawrence Krauss. http://astrobiology.asu.edu/Astrobiology/People.html http://www.origins.asu.edu/
  9. Sagan's Cosmos BBC Planet Earth BBC Blue Planet PBS Nova PBS Nature Anything with Neil Tyson
  10. Lol! This sounds like a Jedi Mind Tricks lyric. Is this a plot for a science fiction movie?
  11. This is tangential to this (absurd) discussion, but your statement reminded me of this article. I thought this was an interesting hypothesis (an inverse relationship exists between muscle control and maximal strength). http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/03/090330200829.htm
  12. No. Human is a strict biological classification, homo sapiens. Australopithecus afarensis and homo erectus might share certain characteristics of a human, but they're not human. Same with your hypothetical machine. I would call it humanoid at best. But as others have said, these are definitions. It's the philosophical implication of these definitions that interests us. Even though the machine is not homo sapiens, it's still something of special interest.
  13. Ecology and the environment are written into the New York State learning standards at the intermediate (middle school) and high school levels. It's part of most, if not all, states' K-12 standards. Environmentalism gets a lot of air time in the schools I've taught in. Delivery of content involved all the formats you've listed, projects, labs, field trips, lecture, discussion. I honestly don't see a lack of education or knowledge as the problem. The problem lies with individual motivation and sacrifice.
  14. I thought his performance in Leaving Las Vegas was excellent. That's what I associate him with. He's made a lot of crap though, especially in the recent part of his career. To answer the question, we live in a system where his salary depends on the viewing public. Cage isn't the problem, it's the idiots paying 75 million in a weekend to see National Treasure 10. When's that coming out by the way?
  15. It was original for me, it was the first time I've said it or read it! (most of it) So you're involved in the project?
  16. The Drake equation is worthless for making calculations. It's filled with guesses. A hundred different scientists can get 100 different answers. "An equation that means anything means nothing." I think Crichton said that. Or I did. Whatever. I think it's worth is in telling us what we don't know but need to know. Which is actually very useful. As far as SETI, I wouldn't classify it as science. I have a soft spot for their motivation, but it borders on pseudoscience. Why not have a search for Santa Claus or a search for Zeus? The hypothesis is supported by a single data point (life on Earth). More importantly it's not falsifiable. I'm much more confident of bacterial life in our galaxy. Another thought. Why would we want to broadcast ourselves to some spacefaring civilization? Compared to them we're weaklings and sitting ducks. It's too narcisistic for my tastes to think any ETs would be interested in our civilization. Moreover, the mere sight of our puny, discordant "society" would only encourage an enemy to attack. Well it's late and I've probably offended many people. Some here may even work on SETI!
  17. Well, if evolution is true then there will always be something new to study.
  18. Here's a section of notes I wrote for a class I used to teach. I say that only because I've forgotten the details. But you can use it to explore further, perhaps? 3. The rise of multicellularity Cooperation and competition have been emphasized throughout this unit. Symbiosis was important in the origin of eukaryotes, resulting in an expansion of life forms similar to what we now call protists, which in turn radiated to give rise to the entire eukaryotic domain—animals, plants, fungi and protists. Cooperation and competition were essential driving forces in the rise of multicellularity. Single-celled organisms, such as bacteria (prokaryotes) and protozoa (unicellular protists [eukaryotes]) have been so successful in adapting to a variety of different environments that they comprise more than half of the total biomass on earth. Unlike animals, many of these unicellular organisms can synthesize all of the substances they need from a few simple nutrients, and some of them divide more than once every hour. What then was the selective advantage that led to the evolution of multicellular organisms? A short answer is that by collaboration and by division of labour it becomes possible to exploit resources that no single cell could utilize so well. This principle, applying at first to simple associations of cells, has been taken to an extreme in the multicellular organisms we see today (Alberts et al 1994). The Cambrian explosion—the rapid diversification of multicellular animal life around the beginning of the Cambrian Period (500-600 my ago), resulting in the appearance of almost all modern animal phyla—was driven by the dramatic geological changes occurring at that time. The atmosphere was becoming rich with oxygen, opening a host of new ecological niches on land. Multicellularity became cost effective and possible and evolved independently many times and in all three domains of life, Archaea, Bacteria and Eukarya (Carrroll, S. B. 2001). In certain of these new niches, bigger was/is better. So how can you get bigger? Complex body plans, multicellularity. Possible gains: · Division of labour (through cellular specialization) · Increased dexterity and locomotion · Increased environmental exploitation (fitter) In bacterial and algal forms (plants) with cell walls, one of the simplest ways to become multicellular was (and still is) for the products of cell division to remain together to form colonies in the form of long filaments. Many early multicellular eukaryotes were millimeter scale, linear or branched, filamentous forms, such as cyanobacteria (see below: Figure 1 (adapted), History of major evolutionary events from the fossil record). How may cellular co-operation have evolved? Evidence of potential routes is not too difficult to find. A number of prokaryotes associate quite closely; fimbriae and pilli are used for the transfer of genetic material and Strepto/Actinomycetes often form filaments. Myxobacteria form fruiting bodies (spore-producing structure) and Anabaena forms heterocysts where nitrogen fixation occurs. However, these are colonial rather than multicellular as they lack what biologists use to define multicellularity: specialized cells with different functions and cellular communication (septal pores in fungi, gap junctions in animals, plasmodesmata in plants and pores/pit plugs in red algae). Clues to the origins of true multicellularity can be observed in many present-day “primitive” life forms, such as Volvox (reading assignment from Alberts 1994), among others (Trichoplax, sponges). Here's a decent discussion about Trichoplax and evolution of multicellularity. http://pharyngula.org/index/weblog/comments/mysterious_trichoplax/ Merged post follows: Consecutive posts merged Yes, exactly.
  19. Considering all the constraints and inputs/outputs and automatic responses I don't think the concept of free will is valid. I'm not even sure what use it has as a concept. Same with consciousness, which is inseparable from free will.
  20. MM6


    I'm not aware of any breaches of the law of entropy. The universe is an open system. Thus, even though the system as a whole is increasing in entropy, there are pockets of decreasing entropic states (explained by dynamical systems theory). I'm not clear on your conclusion that the universe cannot be eternal according to the 2nd law. The universe can reach maximum disorder and remain like that indefinitely, can't it? Btw, you use an distracting number of double negatives in your sentences.
  21. There are several threads around here at the moment that deal with aging (search-->aging). You have some misconceptions. Just to start, stem cells are the cells that replace other cells. Stem cells have a lifespan too, although it's much longer than fully differentiated cells (cells that have been produced and develop for a specific function, e.g. cardiomyocytes (heart cells)). Much of this has to do with telomeres (the "cap" on the end of chromosomes that gets progressively shorter with each DNA replication/cell division). After a point the chromosome becomes damaged (missing base pairs b/c it's losing at both ends) and senescence machinery within the cell clicks on-->cell dies nicely. There are other intracellular and cell/tissue environment factors, too. But the gist is, stem cells age and die. That's our maximum life span. Also to make it clear, as stem cells age they become more inactive and also produce cells with certain hallmarks of age. So as we age, our stem cells are producing cells that are not as fresh as they once did. And our cells' support structure (extracellular matrix) is not as fresh. Thus, we slowly begin to look like a dried up leaf.
  22. You want a business degree, and start-up money. If you're serious about doing business in the biomedical field a technical degree will set you apart. Tufts U has a dual degree program in biomedical sciences and business administration (if I recall). A program like that would be perfect. Or you could do a BS in pharmacy, biomedical sciences, biotechnology, or pharmacology and then top it off with an MBA.
  23. I'm assuming you're intelligent and intellectual by the fact that you are on this forum (not always a rock-steady assumption, btw!), so put that aside for now. To narrow your focus as efficiently and honestly as possible I would focus on your personality and the social milieu of those professions. How sociable are you? (I mean interacting positively with all types of people, not just colleagues). How compassionate are you? If you rate yourself very high on both questions medicine would be the best direction. If you're moderate-low on those scales I would choose business or engineering. Environmental science is beneficial to a large audience but you wouldn't generally interact directly with the humans you are helping. You would most likely be in a research or policy advisement setting. Or you may choose to work to benefit plants or animals. This may suit your social personality. Once you have narrowed down your path with these two questions I would consider things like intellectual stimulation, creative expression, and autonomy, which are reliable indicators of professional contentment. I think this will give you the focus you are looking for.
  24. As others have said, if dollar signs are your sole motivation, then the MBA is a no-brainer. The journey, personality, and life objectives of the two degrees are so diametrically opposed, I don't even understand your dilemma (and why the only variable you mention is money), to be frank.
  25. Proponents of MOND (modified Newtonian dynamics) think Einstein is "wrong." Einstein may be proven wrong in the future, just as Einstein proved Newton wrong, who along with Galileo proved Aristotle wrong. It happens. (I'm not necessarily a proponent of MOND, btw. Just putting it out there.)
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