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Comment: Re:Indirect communication, human rights (Score 4, Interesting) 387

Reminds me of a story by Will Self called 'Between the Conceits', the first in the book Grey Area. In it, all of London is controlled by just 7 people, who communicate with each other by elaborate mass orchestration of mundane movements of the other Londoners.

I stretch, then relax - and 33,665 white-collar workers leave their houses a teensy bit early for work. This means the 6,014 of them will feel dyspeptic during the journey because they've missed their second piece of toast, or bowl of Fruit 'n' Fibre. From which it followed that 2,982 of them will be testy through the morning; and therefore 312 of them will say the wrong thing, leading to dismissal; hence one of these 312 will lose the balance of his reason and commit an apparently random and motiveless murder on the way home.

Hmm. Don't think I can really explain this with one quote. The first chapter is readable here.

Comment: Re:Are his customers happy? (Score 3, Informative) 515

by gilleain (#38207660) Attached to: 'Alternative Medicine' Clinic Attempts To Silence Critics

Chemical reactions are electrical interactions after all.

Hmm. Not in any meaningful sense, no.

I say this as someone who works in a research group on chemoinformatics, involving comparison and analysis of (bio)chemical reactions. For example, here is a drawing (made by graphics software written by me of an atom-atom mapping from my colleague):

cinnamate beta-D-glucosyltransferase

Cinnamate (in cyan) is being attached to the sugar (purple). This is carried out by an enzyme, with a precise arrangement of amino acids in an active site. How on earth would 'electrical interactions' (in general) affect this reaction - or any other?

Comment: Re:watch his documentary on youtube before comment (Score 1) 515

by gilleain (#38206894) Attached to: 'Alternative Medicine' Clinic Attempts To Silence Critics

As someone working in pharmaceutical development (posting anon since I'm at work), I find his ideas interesting. I have some serious doubts about the mechanism whereby his antineoplastons are having an effect, as well as doubts about the consistency of the manufacturing process he's using to make them (IIRC, these are a loosely-defined complex mix of molecules, unlike typical large-molecule biologics whose composition is much more tightly controlled). Still, I would like to see some more serious research done with these compounds; and I'm still open to the possibility that these antineoplastons are actually a viable treatment option.

Okay, so one of the compounds mentioned on wikipedia is this one:

http://www.chemspider.com/Chemical-Structure.50771.html

which is at least drug-like (I can't find any hits in ChEMBL; haven't tried any other open databases). Another is just phenylacetylglutamine, which is 'just' a metabolite. Do you really think there is a reasonable justification for saying this molecule is active? If the guy uses a mixture of molecules, why not purify the most active ones?

(I do realise, of course, that you are not involved in Burzynski research - just curious for your opinion :)

Comment: Re:To be fair (Score 1) 484

by gilleain (#38160966) Attached to: Lego Bible Too Racy For Sam's Club

Then you start ruling out religions. Pretty soon, you're left with Christianity and a couple others to actually consider.

I'm curious - how do you 'rule out' religions? For example, some people might think that the Book of Mormon was invented by Joseph Smith. Certainly Scientology was made up.

Is that what you mean? Or is the the test simply : "Do they believe exactly the same things that I believe?"...

Comment: Re:Yes it is! (Score 2) 585

by gilleain (#38141466) Attached to: New Batch of Leaked Climate Emails

Look moron, there's no grant money for disproving gravity yet there's plenty enough for the other way around. And you gravity believers try to equate us to nazi sympathizers by calling us gravity deniers. We're gravity skeptics, and we're just waiting for conclusive proof to make a decision. Most gravitymongering hype is bullshit and it's all just being pushed by media profiting off fear and politicians profiting off pro-gravity legislation. So until we hear from neutral sources unanimously coming to a consensus, we will rationally remain in doubt.

Wait, now I'm confused - you are still using 'gravity' as a replacement for 'climate change', right?

Given that there are morons that don't believe in relativity it's not impossible that a thread about climate change has attracted actual gravity deniers.

Comment: Re:Portal 2? (Score 1) 87

by gilleain (#37901734) Attached to: <em>Minecraft</em> Wins Gaming Arts Award

I love Minecraft, but I'm beginning to feel Notch is jerking us around. He's introduced new features that are obviously incomplete, with serious bugs. It would make much more sense if he'd redesign Minecraft so that there was a tidy API and a simple way to add third party mods to the game. It's been obvious for some time now that the mod makers are producing more sophisticated and innovative content than Notch is.

Mojang has received tens of millions of dollars in revenue, and Notch is acting like Minecraft is a hobby project he tinkers with in his free time.

Hmmm. Maaaybe. Ravines and strongholds are pretty cool. I've yet to open an ender gate, but still. Perhaps mineworks are too extensive and mazelike, and breeding is fairly pointless. The less said about mooshrooms the better, I think.

I thought that an API was in the works, though. It sure would be nice to be able to install mods more easily.

Comment: Re:Portal 2? (Score 1) 87

by gilleain (#37901580) Attached to: <em>Minecraft</em> Wins Gaming Arts Award

I think Portal 2 is a much better game, but for every hour I've spent in it, I've spent 20 in Minecraft.

This is mis-placed credit, though. The recent changes to Minecraft have been uninteresting and poorly implemented. The real value is in the mods created by the user community. Without them, I would have quit playing a long time ago!

Only tried a few mods, but Equivalent Exchange is very nice. I'm not so sure about BuildCraft, and IndustrialCraft stuff. I quite like the pseudo-medieval/primitive world.

Comment: Re:Legos on a screen? (Score 1) 87

by gilleain (#37901558) Attached to: <em>Minecraft</em> Wins Gaming Arts Award

Bah, Minecraft is boring. Ace of Spades is much more fun and combines same build and dig tunnels, but with shooting and objectives. Multiplayer FPS is much more when you can build defensive structures and dig your way to the enemy base.

Hmmm. That does sound cool, and the mini-map is nice. Not so sure about the textures or the lighting.

Another alternative is FortressCraft, which is on the XBox. It has lasers, apparently

The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness. -- John Muir

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