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Comment Re:This is not about science. It's about dependenc (Score 4, Insightful) 330

So out of curiosity how do you think we should develop GMO crops without patents? These things cost billions of dollars in very hard R&D to develop and bring to market. Without a patent then anyone will grow some of your seeds and then sell them next year to compete with your seeds and they had to do none of the work.

If you want to replace this system you must come up with an alternative.

No patents on living organisms would also screw over the biotech industry. What if I make a new tumor supressor gene from scratch that is better than any human gene and would 100% prevent cancer. As soon as I treated the first person someone would just have their DNA read and find the sequence and sell it without doing any of the R&D.

I understand not liking patents on living things but if you want technology developed our current economic system required a profit motive and without that motive the technology won't be created. This is not like computer programming where a few people on no budget can do amazing work and change things. This stuff is insanely expensive and hard to do. Reaction ingredients alone would bankrupt most people.

Comment Re:This is amazing news (Score 4, Interesting) 33

You should have looked at my signature. :)

I have already done some genetic engineering and I am going to be doing a lot more of it in the future since that is part of my profession. There are risks and there will be mistakes but not trying won't help anymore. Imagine how long it would have taken us to make jet airplanes if we didn't even try to learn how to fly until we where completely sure?

There are drugs today that raise cancer survival rates from 5% to 95%. There are diseases caused by a single defective gene that we can cure. Heck we can now build a robotic arm that has a sense of touch and wire it to your BRAIN. 10 years ago the state of the art was still a danged hook.

Technology is changing quickly and biotech/nanotech developments are going to allow us to cure problems we never even imagined would be cureable. Long term I hope to work for Google's biotech company and work on solving human aging.

The best reason ever to climb a mountain is "because it is there" and I feel the same way about this. We have an opportunity that is unlike any other in human history and we can make a real difference and we should find out how to do it safely and accurately. I hope that in 20 years you will be able to go to a doctor and get a security patch shot that upgrades your tumor supressor genes, grants immunity to a wide range of viruses, improves your regeneration capabilities and your lifespan. That is my goal and that is what I am working towards.

Comment This is amazing news (Score 4, Interesting) 33

I would bet that Editas and other companies switch over to this almost immediately. The problem with Cas9 is the blunt ends and that makes it much harder to do highly specific genome editing but it does work. This method looks vastly better and just as easy to work with. It is hard to explain why the creation of sticky ends is so much better. The old method would be like sawing a piece of wood straight through and the new method a cut half way through, a horizontal cut and then completes it the rest of the way down so you have an overhang. The overhang makes the method far more precise for hooking up new sequences.

I can't wait for us to finally start curing genetic diseases at the source. Biotechnology is progressing so quickly right now and many of the things we have already created are amazing but I don't think this is even the tip of the iceburg yet. Once we can cure genetic problems that will deal with a huge amount of health problems that humans have and these techniques are actually cheap. CRISPR is easy to do and easy to replicate.

It is going to be an interesting next few decades coming up. :)

Comment Re:Considering how fast Google ditched China (Score 1) 381

This is not how laws and treaties work.

They are over specific issues. If the USA and EU countries have laws about copyright and DMCA type laws then those would be enforced and it would have nothing to do with data protection laws.

I don't know if the EU and the USA have treaties for data protection laws that cover this kind of issue.

I know I can say things in the USA that are illegal in many EU countries and the USA won't deport for that ever. Very few laws are respected internationally.

Comment Re:Considering how fast Google ditched China (Score 1) 381

Haven't most if not all EU countries signed treaties with the USA that allows the DMCA and equivalent laws in the signatory countries to apply to everyone that signed the treaties? I am pretty sure at least that Germany and the USA have a treaty for that one and if something is taken down by a DMCA complaint in the USA it is also removed for Germany at least because of a treat that the USA and Germany signed.

That is NOT the same as USA law applying world wide.

Comment Re: Laptops, anyone? (Score 1) 93

I only work with biotech drugs. I do not do ANYTHING with small molecule drugs and those are the kinds that have all the nasty side effects.

Biotech drugs are things like Filgrastim

This one drug has raised cancer survival rates for many types of cancers from 5% to 95% or so by allowing your immune system to be kept strong while undergoing chemotherapy. This drug is temporary only and once you are off chemotherapy as your bone marrow recovers the dosage is lowered until your body fully recovers and it is no longer needed.

There are also DNA and RNA based drugs and even gene therapies using editing techniques like CRISPR-CAS9. Editas just receiver a little over a hundred million to work on gene editing to correct the gene that causes Huntington's disease and also to work on upgrading tumor suppressor genes.

Most of these are all permanent cures and not treatments. Some are used as treatments short term until we are more confident of their safety since once you change someones DNA is becomes a much bigger problem if you screw up.

I agree that small molecule drugs have a massive number of side effects since the molecules are so non-specific. That is why in the USA at least most research is in biotech drugs. They are highly specific and they usually have almost no side effects since we are not making anything new. Pretty much all of biotech is just artificially creating a natural molecule that for some medical reason your body is not making at the time. It is not some new molecule that is foreign to your body.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 1) 93

It is nice to talk with someone having a civil conversation also.

I find that if I stay to standard c++, MPI and OpenMP my code is just a recompile away from running on a Linux cluster. Most of my code ends up running on Linux clusters it is just the development on a Laptop that is easier under Windows.

In the end I suspect that nothing is ever 100% ideal. It is easier to do development under Linux for python by quite a bit compared to Windows You just end up using what works best given the resources you have at the time.

I pretty much only work on biotech development so protein, RNA and DNA based medications. The problem is that they are so hard to make and in many cases companies do know of drugs to cure some diseases and they are not brought to market because they can't figure out how to make them. When you are talking about making 10^23 molecules of something and each one has 10K atoms and each one has to have every single one of those connected correctly and an error rate of less than .001% it is basically at the limits of our technology. There are things that teams of scientists work on for years in a lab and they come up with only a few doses and attempts to build the same drug on a larger scale just turn out to be failures. Some drugs companies try to make for 5 years or more before finally giving up on them until the technology improves.

My goal is to use computer simulations to figure out how to manufacture the drugs. I like Linux a lot but in the end I care more about the drugs being available and will use whatever tool is the most appropriate at the time. That means Linux, Windows, free and proprietary software.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 1) 93

Hibernation means that I can have my laptop go to zero power usage but also restore the exact state it was at (with all programs running) as it was when I powered it off and it will return in about 5 seconds to full running again.

I can have virtual machines, IDE, profiler all setup and running and hibernate the computer for several hours and then use it again at another location.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 1) 93

MATLAB is cross platform but if you have a lot of toolboxes you can start to run into errors under Linux with it.

It has to do with static thread local storage and dynamically loading libraries. I don't know why the error does not occur with Windows ever but it seems to be within the design of glibc. There are ways to work around it but making sure some of the libraries you need the most are loaded first but then other stuff can just fail later.

MATLAB is easy to install and easy to use under Linux but with this bug that it seems there is no realistic way to fix it can be a pain in the ass sometimes.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 1) 93

I know they would like to do more and I understand it is a very hard problem to solve.

I just don't want to deal with the problems anymore. If they figure it out great I will try it and see how it works but if not I will just use Windows 10, Visual Studio, Intel developer tools and MATLAB.

Linux runs on the laptop and all hardware is detected and supported but power management does not work as well as it does under windows by a long shot and GPGPU is a pain in the neck because of optimus support.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 2) 93

By runs slower I mean when I am doing OpenMP applications they are actually running slower under linux. I am not sure how it works but for some reason under Linux I get higher reported temperatures and the CPU does not stay in the higher turbo ranges like it does under windows.

I installed the Linux pstate driver for a Haswell i7 chip and I have it using the performance governnor.

My other issue is when I try to use the dedicated GPU for GPGPU work it is a pain in the ass under Linux. I know it is not Linux's fault that it does not support technology like optimus very well but that doesn't change that it still makes it a pain in the ass.

I used to use Linux as pretty much my only OS. But since going back to school and working on biotech drug process development I have found my goals have changed. I will use free software if it works better but overall for doing very high performance c++ (OpenMP and MPI) it is easier to develop and debug with Visual Studio and the Intel developer tools under windows.

At this point I just want software that works so I can do my primary work of writing computers simulations to help us manufacture drugs that we can't currently figure out how to manufacture and make cures and treatments available to people that need them. Fiddling with my OS to get it to work is just not worth it anymore. I have not had Windows 8.1 crash on this laptop and the upgrade to Windows 10 went without any problems.

Comment Re:Laptops, anyone? (Score 1, Insightful) 93

This kind of stuff is why I use Windows as my primary OS now. I have a laptop and I have to be mobile right now. With Linux on my laptop I lose about 25% of the battery life and it also runs slower compared to Windows. Even worse it does not hibernate correctly and even sleep sometimes screws up. Sometimes when it wakes up from sleep under Linux the USB ports don't work.

I have just gotten tired of dealing with these issues and after all this time it is pretty clear that it is not a priority for developers of Linux. It is just easier to have virtualbox with Linux installed under Windows and use that.

Comment Re:SJWs (Score 1) 576

Do you really think a highly educated indian male with a masters degree already and applying to a German university for a PhD and probably to stay if accepted is a likely person that supports all the rape that happens in india? So far my experience in Germany is that the Indian students I have met say that the rape culture is evil and they need to find a way to fix it but they have no idea how to do it.

An Indian with a German PhD would end up being a highly productive member of society for any of the EU countries and countries like Germany actively make it easy for people with advanced degrees to get in and find jobs.

In the end the view is definitely racism and unwarranted.

However if would NOT recommend that any woman actually go to India since you would not exactly be around the best at brightest that way.

"The Mets were great in 'sixty eight, The Cards were fine in 'sixty nine, But the Cubs will be heavenly in nineteen and seventy." -- Ernie Banks