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Comment Re:Synthetic Drugs? (Score 1) 294

My original post meant to address the gender-changing affects seen in amphibians and how crazy that is. I am not concerned so much about frogs changing genders (until that Aussie guy builds Jurassic Park), but the cancerous effects of fucking with hormonal systems in mammals. Thank you for a good reply, it certainly is a legitimate problem. PS: gender changing in fish is also a huge issue. They aren't affected by the same mechanism as mammals, but the feminization of certain fish species leaves them infertile.

Comment Synthetic Drugs? (Score 5, Insightful) 294

While this is not surprising and questionably news, I am a little more worried about the years and years of synthetic, biologically active drugs in the water. Birth control hormones don't exactly just disappear after you swallow them, and I know that they and other classes of petroleum based drugs have shown hormonal activity not only in mammals, but amphibians, fish, and birds. Though a world with huge breasted marine mammals would be cool, I am more concerned about the chemicals other than coffee that are following the same pathways and reaching the entire world. Miles deep into the ocean, thousands of miles through the atmosphere, there is really no where on the planet that has not been affected in at least a minor way by the expansion of human industry.

Comment Re:So, consumers are getting smarter then? (Score 1) 485

I'm typing this on a 10 year old Dell XP machine that has served me nicely. I replaced a video card in 2006 and my monitor died during a move. (I actually think the pins just got bent and one broke, but I had a spare to replace it with so haven't bothered investigating). At some point I would like to replace XP with a linux distro, but I haven't been able to find one that will live boot. Any suggestions for a distro that will run on 10 yr old hardware that was fairly high end at it's time would be greatly appreciated!!

Comment Re:agreed (Score 1) 45

Thank you for your positive contribution. Not being sarcastic, I have a question for you: can't hydrocarbons react to form molecules with pretty serious dipoles? I'm not a chemist, I'm an ecologist, and I don't remember a lot of organic chemistry. I might be totally wrong, but I thought that hydrocarbons on their own can form some dipolar molecules, and some especially strong dipoles in the presence of other elements, especially flouride, chloride, etc. I'd appreciate a response, I don't really know!

Comment Re:Search != research (Score 1) 57

Cynically, I have to say... Research into things that no-one has discovered before = long hours in tedium with little funding. Research into discovering patentable medical devices/techniques that will bring profit to your institution = tenure and unlimited funding. To qualify this post, I am an ecologist at a major university in a large city with a huge interest in biomedical companies, I'll let you guess where that is. I am just a little upset that it takes me weeks (or months) to get a set of direly needed pipettors while the undergrad's in the pre-med labs seem to get new sets weekly. Granted they break them weekly because they don't know what they're doing, but can't I get a new set and give them my older one that works (but is not able to be calibrated precisely? If the undergrads get a result skewed because they missed a measurement by 3~4 microlitres, they're still learning the concept. If I do, it means re-working an entire sample set.

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