Want to read Slashdot from your mobile device? Point it at m.slashdot.org and keep reading!


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Sure... (Score 4, Insightful) 266

Every. Fucking. Hospital. Everywhere.

The only thing that keeps this from being a problem is that the gory details of most people's lives are really not interesting to anybody and they are hard to monetize. I would imagine that hospitals and clinics around Hollywood have been hit multiple times. If you are a 'high value target', ie, nobody here on Slashdot, I'd be worried.

Very worried.

Comment: Re:Summary needs to bring up the interesting parts (Score 3, Informative) 49

by ColdWetDog (#48634869) Attached to: Scientists Discover That Exercise Changes Your DNA

True, this isn't particularly earth shattering, but you are incorrect in stating that there is no change in DNA. Methylation covalently (stably) alters DNA. So it actually does create a different nucleotide, one that is recognized by the cell as different from the original. This COULD result in germ cell (ie, heritable) changes.

There is absolutely no data to suggest that this particular set of methylation events has anything to do with reproduction or reproductive fitness, but mechanistically, it's possible. We are still pretty much working out the importance and scope of DNA methylation. In this particular instance, it is not at all clear that it does anything except alter gene expression - and we know that exercise causes gene expression changes. Those new biceps didn't just magically pop into being (unless you are photoshopped).

Comment: Re:What does this mean...? (Score 1) 49

by ColdWetDog (#48634729) Attached to: Scientists Discover That Exercise Changes Your DNA

So could changing ones thinking, behavior, or environment also change which genes are expressed?

Yes. That is the interesting bit about DNA methylation. Lots of 'transient' things can change the structure of DNA. If you think about it a bit, it makes sense. The 'Central Dogma' (which for years has been barking up the wrong tree) states that DNA makes RNA which makes Protein and DNA loops back and makes itself. While certainly true, it is too coarse of an approximation to be really useful. DNA changes in response to the environment (the topic here), RNA amplifies and interferes with pretty darn near everything, the environment can directly act on germ cell lines (again, via DNA methylation).

So yes, thinking (which at the molecular level requires at the very least RNA and protein production) can, through methylation and other mechanisms, control gene expression both in the organism and in progeny.

Nature has had several billion years to mess around with this. It's fantastically complex

+ - Space X - Going where no one has gone before->

Submitted by ColdWetDog
ColdWetDog (752185) writes "This Friday, SpaceX will attempt what no agency or company has done before: land a used rocket stage on a floating ocean platform. The effort will be made during the private spaceflight company's fifth paid cargo run to the International Space Station. Liftoff of the Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station Space Launch Complex 40 is scheduled for 1:22 p.m. EST (18:22 UTC)."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:$25 Million? (Score 1, Insightful) 56

by ColdWetDog (#48628067) Attached to: India Successfully Test Fires Its Heaviest Rocket

Careful throwing numbers around. We have absolutely no idea how accurate that figure is. Could well be 'Bollywood Accounting', could be something made up by a bureaucrat flunky. Could even be real.

It does presage an era where there are potentially a large number of groups, both government and private, with the capability of launching commercially and strategically significant payloads into LEO or geosynchronous orbit.

(Raises pinky.)

Comment: Re:hooray for the government (Score 1) 68

by ColdWetDog (#48627477) Attached to: Councilmen Introduce Bills Strongly Regulating UAV Use in NYC

Further, not everything landing at an airport is as large or as robust as a commercial jet aircraft. A light plane could easily be severely damaged by a small UAV. Likely, no - I've been in small planes hit by birds - we've survived but it's not a given.

UAVs have no business anywhere in a controlled airspace unless they are under control of a qualified operator AND other pilots know it's in the air. Now, that doesn't answer the question whether somebody should (or shouldn't) be allowed to play with their Phantom II in the neighborhood park. Those things, with the operator using a modicum of common sense, are pretty safe. The problem is the phrase 'modicum of common sense'. We all know that some random jackass is going to lose control of the thing, turn a poodle into poodle-chops or knock a Vespa into oncoming traffic.

While the cretins in /b/ might think it funny, the rest of the planet might take offense at that sort of behavior. Hence, regulation.

This is why it's hard to have nice things.

Comment: Re:hooray for the government (Score 1) 68

by ColdWetDog (#48627369) Attached to: Councilmen Introduce Bills Strongly Regulating UAV Use in NYC

Guns are an externality. If 5% of the population is walking around with a concealed weapon, the muggers and stranglers won't know that I don't have one and I'll enjoy the deterrent despite not contributing anything.

UAVs are potentially an externality because they can do physical damage anonymously for the cost of the UAV.

One of these objects is not like the others ....

Real Programmers think better when playing Adventure or Rogue.