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Comment Amino Acids (Score 3, Interesting) 286

So... what they discovered is that limiting diets reduce reproduction at the expense of lifespan?

Color me skeptical, but this is not exactly new. It's well known that limited diets reduce reproductive metabolism in favor of survival. After all, what good is reproduction if you don't live to do it.

Now, I'm not saying this is all bunk. I don't know. What I am saying is that all this really proves is that methionine is necessary for egg-laying and lifespan in Drosophila. That's a far stretch from saying that reducing methionine increases lifespan in well-fed humans. In fact, what TFA says is that there is a discrepancy in studies. In fact, TFA doesn't even mention tryptophan, so I don't know where the submitter got that.

Unfortunately, I can't access the Nature article right now. However, I'll definitely be taking a look at it tomorrow, because I am extremely skeptical of these claims.

Comment Effectiveness (Score 3, Insightful) 317

While this is excellent news, and intriguing scientifically, an effectiveness of 31.8% is practically useless in vaccinating a population. Typically you need at least 70% of your population (varies based on virus) vaccinated before you start to see the effects of herd immunity. Even if they vaccinated everyone in Thailand, you wouldn't get this effect.

Furthermore, the low effectiveness is actually a liability; the end result could be mutations in the HIV virus that make it immune to the vaccine. This is part of the reason why the influenza vaccine has limited effectiveness - influenza, like HIV, has a tendency to mutate quickly. If a new strain comes along, like H1N1 for influenza, you're defenseless.

Finally, I think there's a problem with how the vaccine will be perceived. If the vaccine is only 30% effective, I think people will see that as being too risky to even get the shot. There's already (too much IMO) FUD out there against vaccines in general. If you think that you can get influenza from the flu vaccine, there's a strong aversion to taking the HIV vaccine. For a 30% chance at being immune, that's no good. If it were 100%, that would be a totally different story.

Comment Pedantry (Score 1) 74

Nitpicking here, since the original site requires an account to post...

First, while technically there are 16 core classes, in reality that number is 17 counting the Swordmage. This is slated to be expanded upon in Arcane Power, and has had material released in DDI. It's clear WotC considers this a fully realized class (Arcane Defender, for those interested), as much as any other class in the PHBs.

Second, Deva is a re-imagined Aasimar. It may be unfair to the author, but I have to question the opinion of any author that would write a piece and not realize this - especially since WotC has indicated this is the case. It throws a giant monkey-wrench into the credibility of the article, from a long-time D&D player's (ie, my) perspective.


Submission + - FDIC closes Netbank, Inc.

An anonymous reader writes: One of the first and best, in my opinion, internet banks in the country was closed by the FDIC today. Being a loyal customer for 8 years, I am saddened that an institution that provided me with so much great service and a cool, hi tech way [early 2000 way at least] to conduct my financial transactions is shutting down. Seems that mortgage defaults are to blame. Here's the link to the story and the defunct web page...

Submission + - New antibiotics for pathogenic attacks of bacteria (

allengineering writes: "A team of research directed by the pr. KIM Kyung-Gyu of the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Sungkyunkwan discovered the structure of the protein Rse B playing an essential part in the transmission of the signals of stresses resulting from the pathogenic attacks of bacteria. The article is been published in the edition of May of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the the USA (PNAS). This projection should make it possible to develop new antibiotics."
United States

Submission + - Forensics Expert says Al-Qaeda Images Altered

WerewolfOfVulcan writes: Wired reports that researcher Neal Krawetz revealed some veeeeeery interesting things about the Al-Qaeda images that our government loves to show off.

From the article: "Krawetz was also able to determine that the writing on the banner behind al-Zawahiri's head was added to the image afterward. In the second picture above showing the results of the error level analysis, the light clusters on the image indicate areas of the image that were added or changed. The subtitles and logos in the upper right and lower left corners (IntelCenter is an organization that monitors terrorist activity and As-Sahab is the video production branch of al Qaeda) were all added at the same time, while the banner writing was added at a different time, likely around the same time that al-Zawahiri was added, Krawetz says." Why would Al-Qaeda add an IntelCenter logo to their video? Why would IntelCenter add an Al-Qaeda logo? Methinks we have bigger fish to fry than Gonzo and his fired attorneys... }:-) The article contains links to Krawetz's presentation and the source code he used to analyze the photos.
The Internet

Submission + - Is About To Return

An anonymous reader writes: The legendary BitTorrent site will be back in action soon. Sloncek, the former owner of decided to donate the domain to The Pirate Bay lads, who will relaunch the site in a few days, staying true to its original design. The return of a Legend.

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