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Biotech

First 'Malaria-Proof' Mosquito Created 261

Posted by timothy
from the what-about-a-really-good-egg-cream dept.
Gisg writes "The University of Arizona team reported that their genetically modified mosquitoes are immune to the malaria-causing parasite, a single-cell organism called Plasmodium. Riehle and his colleagues tested their genetically-altered mosquitoes by feeding them malaria-infested blood. Not even one mosquito became infected with the malaria parasite."
Math

Bruce Bueno de Mesquita Uses Games To See the Future 134

Posted by timothy
from the shall-we-play-a-game dept.
parallel_prankster writes "Bruce Bueno de Mesquita is a professor of politics at New York University and a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University in California. In his new book, The Predictioneer (The Predictioneer's Game in the US), he describes a computer model based on game theory which he — and others — claim can predict the future with remarkable accuracy. The website also has a game page where he provides an online version of the game and information on how to play." The (semi-paywalled; may need to register) New Scientist has a story on de Mesquita, too; a snippet: "Over the past 30 years, Bueno de Mesquita has made thousands of predictions about hundreds of issues from geopolitics to personal problems. Overall, he claims, his hit rate is about 90 per cent."

Comment: Re:wealth (Score 1) 380

by smithwis (#30261092) Attached to: What the iPod Tells Us About the World Economy

Economics are outside my field but your questions are interesting so I'll have a go.

A few Points:

  1. You hinted at this with your response to AlXtreme. I suppose AlXtreme's answer better describes potential wealth. Vast oil reserves represents potential wealth equal to what others will give for it.
  2. We have a workable definition if we adopt a variant definition of wealth: Wealth is what I have that I want. With this definition OPEC's oil reserves still represents wealth to it(They burn fossil fuels and thus want oil). Of course they have many other wants that need filling before they will feel wealthy.
  3. Up to a point, Oil is worth more to a big consumer(such as the US) than it is to an OPEC nation. There will be things that are worth more to an OPEC nation than oil(perhaps food and knowledge).
  4. This unequal valuation of goods among countries encourages trade.

I fear any explanation of economic processes reduces the problem to near idiocy but it is interesting none-the-less. Thanks for your intersting questions.

Comment: Re:A Natural Progression Yet So Many Caveats (Score 1) 578

by smithwis (#30240426) Attached to: Dumbing Down Programming?

I'm glad you mentioned prototyping because I think that is a real benefit of an easy programming language. If a user feels confident enough to try and program their own solution it forces them to really think about what they need and want. As a developer of business applications, I can tell you that a user who knows their required features and how those features might necessarily work is extremely valuable. Which is great so long as they're not tied to the original product they developed. That being said, we've been trying to bring software developing to the average user for a long time now.

As an aside, I think there are quite a few developers who have elitist issues going on with anything they perceive as more accessible(vi/emacs instead of Eclipse/Visual Studio; C/Assembly instead of Java/Javascript; etc).

Comment: Re:Dear Sir (Score 1) 1486

by smithwis (#25683709) Attached to: Obama Launches Change.gov

The government is paying a good chunk of your tuition in exchange for 100 hours of community service. Sounds like a fair exchange for me.

Exactly which part of the constitution are we deliberately misinterpreting to give the federal government the authority to do this?

I'm sorry, but which part of the consitution do you think this breaks? Or am I just misunderstanding you?

User Journal

Journal: Some of my favorite quotes

Journal by smithwis

I hope life isn't a big joke, because I don't get it.

--Jack Handey

Probably the earliest fly swatters were nothing more than some sort of striking surface attached to the end of a long stick.

--Jack Handey

One of my favorites:

"Now here's something you're really going to like!" -- Rocket J. Squirrel

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