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Comment Re:Death To All Jews (Score 2, Interesting) 905

"But for some reason the idea of the Jews having a homeland drives people berserk."

Probably because jewish religious/historical texts claim the jews bailed on Egypt then wandered the desert and finally invaded and stole the Palestinian's homeland. Personally I think all the sky fairy worshipers are crackpots but I fail to see what is disputed on that bit. You could (probably rightly) argue that it is the homeland of everyone born there and yesterday doesn't matter but I can't see any logical basis for calling Isreal the homeland of the jews.

 

Comment Re:Is there a product these patents protect? (Score 2) 69

"Thus, CRISPR could be best compared to replacing a hacksaw with a laser cutter. The general public has no need of such a tool"

On the contrary, like a laser cutter the general public does have much use for the tool. Unlike laser cutters the fundamental tools are being locked behind non-disclosure agreements and patents artificially inflating the price to play dramatically. If the general public had no use for such tools makers clubs, diy bio groups, etc wouldn't exist at all. As it stands diy bio groups are limited to mostly cookie cutter protocols that repeat previous experiments because the more general purpose tools (both those which exist and those which they could produce) are locked behind paywalls.

There is no great magic behind synthesizing RNA and PCR for instance and certainly no reason for these materials to be expensive but getting your hands on the materials for a laymen is rather difficult and even if you can it normally comes with an agreement which precludes using those tools to replicate those precursors and share along with information on how to do the same. Information on using common bacterial, viral, etc vectors and basic tools to work with them should be completely free as well.

We desperately need a bioGNU. Many of these processes are actually refined nearly to the point of being programmable like code but access is kept strictly controlled and/or key pieces that allow one to cheaply and easily replicate the precursors is held back to artificially limit access and drive up prices.

Comment Re: White Leftists Whine, China Creates Superhuman (Score 1) 159

On the contrary, this has been something you could work with $5 worth of raw material, a few dozen hours of self study, and a few hundred bucks worth of diy equipment for at least a decade now. Thanks to IP and strict agreements no share terms on that $5 worth of material plus ethical concerns has remained something that in practice will require you to be associated with a multi-million dollar organization to play at all.

Comment Re:Is there a product these patents protect? (Score 1) 69

"Well, by the time they can use that patent in any meaningful way beyond simply experimentation it will have expired. "

By the time it expires everything meaningful that can be done with the base technology will be locked behind reams of patents like most work that can be done with DNA. With $500-1000, a bunch of DIY equipment, 3-6months worth of self-study, you can set up a mini lab and do all sorts of experimentation... at least you could if everything you need weren't locked up in patents that turn 15 cents worth of raw materials into $5000 a shot IP licenses with promises not to share with others.

Comment Re:I don't see the problem. (Score 1) 660

"Netflix enters every market with local servers, and as such, the streaming is fast, even in a place like China"

No kidding, they do that because they have to. A Google cache appliance isn't going to help with anything but browsing the web... I'm not really sure The only way it makes sense with Netflix or most US industry to open up shop in India or China closing up shop in the US if they were opening shop to sell to Indians/Chinese. It would not work for Netflix to stream to the US from China because there is too much latency the pipes between the two nations aren't fat enough to carry that massive load of traffic.

Comment Re:Can't (Score 1) 660

"a wonderful example of an entitlement issue. Just because you want it doesn't mean you should get it. Also there is no particular reason the job should require it just to give those people jobs."

Look, I can just copy and paste from the last time I made a counterargument you have no effective argument against.

Comment Re:It should be obvious, but ... (Score 1) 660

" He wasn't going to get there as a "self-starter", like just about everyone else outside of fiction he needed some help."

Everyone gets help at some point that doesn't mean they aren't a self starter. There is a difference between getting helped at some point and spending a significant chunk of your adult life being trained to think someone is going to spoon fed everything you need to know.

Comment Re:Maybe train the American kid first (Score 1) 660



"How about taking a step back and think of it rationally instead of emotionally."

It isn't emotional. I should restate though. Those with higher degrees tend to want to think those with degrees superior to those without them. They almost have to after investing so much into that path. :"Either could effectively be apprenticed to someone exceptional afterwards with the same result but different approaches to fill in the different gaps"

That is probably true. In my experience if someone straight out of formal education can do the job it would make more sense to hire self starters who have demonstrated skills that would give them an edge in advancing on the job either with or without calling it an apprenticeship. It certainly should carry the same suitable entry level salary that would have gone to someone with a degree. If they make it a year or two they could qualify for any tuition assistance and go to fill out their education if that is believed to be the better path. Good for everyone if people who aren't meant for the field find out BEFORE they have degrees and debt and go around adding taking a spot that someone with the skill and passion for the field could fill.

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