Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Earth

Model Says Religiosity Gene Will Dominate Society 729

Posted by timothy
from the getchyer-broad-brushes-n'-start-paintin' dept.
Hugh Pickens writes writes "PhysOrg reports on a study by Robert Rowthorn, emeritus professor at Cambridge University, that predicts that the genetic components that predispose a person toward religion are currently "hitchhiking" on the back of the religious cultural practice of high fertility rates and that provided the fertility of religious people remains on average higher than that of secular people, the genes that predispose people towards religion will spread. For example, in the past 20 years, the Amish population in the US has doubled, increasing from 123,000 in 1991 to 249,000 in 2010. The huge growth stems almost entirely from the religious culture's high fertility rate, which is about 6 children per woman, on average. Rowthorn says that while fertility is determined by culture, an individual's predisposition toward religion is likely to be influenced by genetics, in addition to their upbringing. In the model, Rowthorn uses a "religiosity gene" to represent the various genetic factors that combine to genetically predispose a person toward religion, whether remaining religious from youth or converting to religion from a secular upbringing. Rowthorn's model predicts that the religious fraction of the population will eventually stabilize at less than 100%, and there will remain a possibly large percentage of secular individuals. But nearly all of the secular population will still carry the religious allele, since high defection rates will spread the religious allele to secular society when defectors have children with a secular partner."
Biotech

Scientists Identify a Potentially Universal Mechanism of Aging 359

Posted by Soulskill
from the wonder-if-boosterspice-is-covered-by-health-care dept.
cybergenesis2008 points us to a summary of research out of Harvard Medical School in which a set of genes known to affect aging in yeast was found to affect aging in mice as well. The genes, called sirtuins, perform two particular tasks; regulating which genes are "on" and "off," and also helping to repair damaged DNA. As an organism ages, the frequency of damage to DNA increases, leaving less time for the sirtuins' regulatory tasks. The increasingly unregulated genes then become a significant factor in aging. Realizing this, the researchers "administered extra copies of the sirtuin gene [to the mice], or fed them the sirtuin activator resveratrol, which in turn extended their mean lifespan by 24 to 46 percent." We discussed the plans for this research a few years ago.
Microsoft

Microsoft Working On Its Own App Store 195

Posted by timothy
from the goes-around-comes-around dept.
CWmike writes "Microsoft is working on a software distribution scheme along the lines of Apple's iPhone App Store, CEO Steve Ballmer said yesterday at a developer's conference in Sydney, Australia. 'There's not much money being made, but the general concept of giving developers a way not only to get their code distributed, but to really get visibility for the code, is a good idea,' Ballmer said. Ballmer hinted that something similar would be coming soon from Microsoft. While he said Micrsoft was not ready to detail the works in progress, he said '... fear not, we're hard at work, and you'll see some of the benefits [of that] with some of the concepts, particularly Facebook's.'"
Communications

EA Forum Ban Will Now Mean EA Game Ban 549

Posted by timothy
from the being-nice-is-actually-an-option dept.
An anonymous reader writes "A post on the EA Support Forums from APOC, online community manager for Electronic Arts, outlines a new policy for their new forums, saying users who earn a ban based on their behavior in the forums will be locked out of all of the EA games tied to that account: 'Well, its actually going to be a bit nastier for those who get banned. Your forum account will be directly tied to your Master EA Account, so if we ban you on the forums, you would be banned from the game as well since the login process is the same. And you'd actually be banned from your other EA games as well since it's all tied to your account. So if you have SPORE and Red Alert 3 and you get yourself banned on our forums or in-game, well, your SPORE account would be banned to. It's all one in the same, so I strongly recommend people play nice and act mature. All in all, we expect people to come on here and abide by our ToS. We hate banning people, it makes our lives a lot tougher, but it's what we have to do.'" Update: 10/31 12:36 GMT by T : Not so! Pandanapper writes "After a flood of complaints the EA community moderator APOC corrects his statement about how banning you from the forums bans you from your game access as well:"That said, the previous statement I made recently (that's being quoted on the blogs) was inaccurate and a mistake on my part. I had a misunderstanding with regards to our new upcoming forums and website and never meant to infer that if we ban or suspend you on the forums, you would be banned in-game as well. This is not correct, my mistake, my bad."
Graphics

Linux Alternatives To Apple's Aperture 271

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the linux-users-deserve-pretty-pictures-too dept.
somethingkindawierd writes "An experiment focusing on open source tools for Ubuntu Linux to compete with Aperture on the Mac. The author didn't think he would find a worthwhile open source solution, but to his surprise he found some formidable raw processing tools. A good read for any Linux fan or photographer looking for capable and inexpensive tools"
PC Games (Games)

Referee Recommends Disbarment For Jack Thompson 280

Posted by timothy
from the disbar-is-such-a-harsh-word dept.
spielermacher writes "GamePolitics is reporting that Jack Thompson — the lawyer every gamer loves to hate — has apparently lost his court case and is facing disbarment. The Referee in the case has gone beyond the Florida Bar's request for a 10-year disbarment and is recommending a lifetime ban. From the Final Report issued by the court: '... the Respondent has demonstrated a pattern of conduct to strike out harshly, extensively, repeatedly and willfully to simply try to bring as much difficulty, distraction and anguish to those he considers in opposition to his causes. He does not proceed within the guidelines of appropriate professional behavior ...' All I can say is that it's about time."
Games

African Americans and the Video Game Industry 646

Posted by kdawson
from the in-the-game-but-not-of-the-game dept.
An anonymous reader writes "African Americans spend more money and time playing video games than whites, yet only 2% of game developers are black. This past week, MTV's Multiplayer blog interviewed five black game industry professionals for their perspective on race in the industry. Intelligent Gamer summarizes and highlights portions of this lengthy series of interviews."
IT

The Dirty Jobs of IT 162

Posted by Zonk
from the we-care-a-lot dept.
dantwood writes "In an Infoworld article, Dan Tynan writes about the '7 Dirtiest Jobs' in IT. Number three? Enterprise espionage engineer (black ops). 'Seeking slippery individuals comfortable with lying, cheating, stealing, breaking, and entering for penetration testing of enterprise networks. Requirements include familiarity with hacking, malware, and forgery; must be able to plausibly impersonate a pest control specialist or a fire marshal. Please submit rap sheet along with resume.'" Paging Mike Rowe, Mike Rowe to the IT desk.

It was kinda like stuffing the wrong card in a computer, when you're stickin' those artificial stimulants in your arm. -- Dion, noted computer scientist

Working...