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Comment Re:12 Monkeys (Score 2) 301

Researchers have already tested the gene drive in a similar way (although not with mammals AFAIK). It is frighteningly effective. With the method they are proposing you don't need to make genetically superior mice that will out breed the others. By making the engineered mice only have male offspring they will be exploiting the delicate balance of ecology. The population starts out as 50/50 male/female, after a few generations it will be something like 52/48...more and more male engineered mice to breed with females, which leads to even more engineer male mice and so on. Eventually (and relatively quickly since mice have several litters a year) you reach a tipping point and the population crashes HARD. In an isolated place like New Zealand I would expect this could be 100% successful.

Comment Re:Hyland's teething tablets (Score 1) 309

"From what I have read, the effective ingredient in them is probably the belladonna rather than the homeopathic ingredients..." It sounds like you might have some confusion about what a homeopathic medication actually is and perhaps how it's supposed to work. You might want to Google that... Anywho, the homeopathic meds consist of: a sugar (maybe dextrose, sucrose, or lactose), a binder to hold it together in a tablet form, and a dilution (your "effective" ingredient). I'm not going to go into the philosophy, but basically the more diluted the product the more potent it is supposed to be (makes sense right?), so you will see bottles that say x60 or x400 etc, which is the number of 10 fold dilutions the ingredient has gone under. So, a "high potency" x400 dilution would have 1x10^-400 parts of active ingredient left. Just so you know, the entire observable universe, all the billions (trillions?) of galaxies contain maybe upwards of 1x10^82 atoms total...just let that sink in a minute. The only belladonna that could get into these tablets at that level of dilution is if it randomly waft into the factory from some nightshade plants from outside. This is the FDA's issue, that the product had detectable levels of belladonna when (if hyland was following their dilution protocol) shouldn't have had any at all..

Comment Re:Stupid question (Score 5, Informative) 140

The radiometric dating is done on zircon mineral crystals. These crystals would form naturally after the molten rock of the early moon cooled...just like on earth. So the date of 4.51 billion years is the time the molten moon cooled and the zircon (which was ejected from earth in what must have been a massive collision) formed. The oldest rock on earth has zircon that is dated to 4.54 billion years ago.To quote wikipedia: "Zircon incorporates uranium and thorium atoms into its crystal structure, but strongly rejects lead. Therefore, one can assume that the entire lead content of the zircon is radiogenic, i.e. it is produced solely by a process of radioactive decay after the formation of the mineral. Thus the current ratio of lead to uranium in the mineral can be used to determine its age."

Comment Totally moot... (Score 1) 436

Uber isn't easy as a full-time job, it's really meant to be a part-time "gig"...a little way to make some extra money on the side. Uber is a bit disingenuous in their advertising for drivers ($1000/week, etc.), but you can basically make your own schedule and work whenever, where ever you're an independent contractor. If you can't hack it as a full-time driver, then get a real freaking job. As others have already pointed out, Uber's grand design has driverless cars replacing human drivers as soon as they come online, so if I was an Uber driver I wouldn't count on having that "gig" for too much longer anyway.

Comment Meh. (Score 1) 109

Meh. What a worthless piece of writing. The article doesn't even specify what a "digital agenda" is or give examples, but I guess I can use my imagination. You wanna know why all those countries have digital agendas? It's because they feel like they are light-years behind the US (silicon valley that is to say) and it's their way of acting like they are doing something about it..."Hey! We have an agenda! We're doing something here! Innovate!". The great irony of course being that you can't legislate your way to innovation with a Maoist 5 year plan. Tech innovation in the US is obviously doing just fine without some BS government lip service agenda...and we already have enough fucking corporate welfare programs thank you very much.

Comment Re:All power comes at a price (Score 1) 340

If you live in the Northwest, then almost all your electricity comes from renewable hydropower anyway. If we are better able to conserve energy through increased efficiency (i.e Negawatts) this area really shouldn't require the scale of energy diversity (wind/solar/biomass/nuclear) that the rest of the country will in the future.

Comment Improvement on Nihon University YURI I (Score 1) 59

Pretty awesome, looks like they actually have a shot at the prize. However, major props have to go to Nihon University YURI I (1994),, from which the GAMERA design is directly based. Big improvements with power to weight ratio by adding the hand crank and carbon fiber materials though.

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