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The Science, Technology and Futurism Thread
(09-10-2020, 08:45 PM)turingmachine75 Wrote: My wife thinks the two decades part sounds about right.

Rimjob!

I mean rimshot!

Whatever, at this point it's not like you know the difference anyway!
Gamertag: Tweakee
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Lay off the cocaine, shorty.
If I could change to liquid, I'd fill the cracks and bend the rocks.
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Living organisms in the clouds of Venus?  

A paper has been published that looks at that possibility:

https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environ...BCBreaking

Quote:It's an extraordinary possibility - the idea that living organisms are floating in the clouds of Planet Venus.

But this is what astronomers are now considering after detecting a gas in the atmosphere they can't explain.

That gas is phosphine - a molecule made up of one phosphorus atom and three hydrogen atoms.

On Earth, phosphine is associated with life, with microbes living in the guts of animals like penguins, or in oxygen-poor environments such as swamps.

For sure, you can make it industrially, but there are no factories on Venus; and there are certainly no penguins.

So why is this gas there, 50km up from the planet's surface? Prof Jane Greaves, from Cardiff University, UK and colleagues are asking just this question.

They've published a paper in the journal Nature Astronomy detailing their observations of phosphine at Venus, as well as the investigations they've made to try to show this molecule could have a natural, non-biological origin.
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https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/07/health/no..._term=link

Quote:The Nobel Prize in Chemistry has been awarded to Emmanuelle Charpentier and Jennifer A. Doudna for the development of a method for genome editing.

They discovered one of gene technology's sharpest tools: the CRISPR/Cas9 genetic scissors. Using these, researchers can change the DNA of animals, plants and micro-organisms with extremely high precision.

Before announcing the winners on Wednesday, Göran K. Hansson, secretary-general for the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, said that this year's prize was about "rewriting the code of life."

The CRISPR/Cas9 gene editing tools have revolutionized the molecular life sciences, brought new opportunities for plant breeding, are contributing to innovative cancer therapies and may make the dream of curing inherited diseases come true, according to a press release from the Nobel committee.
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From 2015.  Discussing a game released in 1998.  

I Asked a Biological Weapons Expert How Far-Fetched Metal Gear Solid’s Genome Soldiers Really Are

https://www.vice.com/en/article/9bgqe3/i...ly-are-030


Quote:VICE: FOXDIE, from the Metal Gear Solid series, is a virus that enters macrophages in the target's bloodstream, then it uses enzymes to attach to a DNA sequence that it has been "programmed" to recognize. Once the virus is attached to the DNA, the macrophage starts to produce cytokines, and ultimately causes the target to have a heart attack via programmed cell death, apoptosis. Is there any truth, in terms of what exists today, or possibility in this idea?

Dr Steven Block: Let me talk about the scientific basis for each of those pieces. Each of those pieces that you just described has a basis in fact. Is there a virus, for example, that could target white blood cells and get into them? Yes, a good example is AIDS. There are a number of leukemia viruses that, in fact, have specific receptors that are found on your white blood cells and use this as a point of entry. Is that part of it true? Yes, viruses exist that could do that.

Next question: Once the DNA or the RNA or whatever the device is using, once its genome is injected into the host's cell, can it locate a specific sequence on the surface on the DNA of that cell? The answer to that is also yes. You might've heard about this new technology called Crispr? It's not the only example, but it's the most practical as it's been brought further along in terms of technology.

It's an example of technology that was developed in evolution by bacteria and viruses to try to find specific sequences in the house. And so, Crispr can be programmed with very short segments of DNA that you provide and can be programmed to target a complementary sequence in the genome.

In other words, if I wanted to go to point A on the human genome, I can make it go to point A and—if in a different virus—I want to make it go to point B, I can make it go to point B. We know that sets of enzymes exist which once created and given the right instructions, so to speak, in the form of a short DNA molecule, can actually target a specific sequence in the genome. So, does that part of the technology exist? Absolutely, yes.

Once it's found that place, could it, for example, either active its own program to make cytokines or activate the intrinsic program in the white blood cells? (White blood cells can also make cytokines; different types of white blood cells are specialized in making different kinds of cytokines.)


The last part of the scenario that you gave is that the gene entered the white blood cells—it targeted the DNA—and there's technology for that. Boosted cytokine production—the technology exists for that, and caused lethality in the target. Is all of that possible? It's absolutely possible. But putting all of those pieces together and making them work as a practical weapon? It's a tall order.

All the little pieces need to work together like clockwork, the thing can't backfire or be self-terminating, the host can't reject it. That part is actually non-trivial. Does the technology exist for producing a genetically engineered weapon which would do all these pieces? Yes.

Has anybody done this? Absolutely not. Would it be trivial to do? It's not as easy as you think.



Quote:In the same game, a troop of soldiers are named the Genome Soldiers and are organized to cope with terrorist incidents specifically involving weapons of mass destruction. Its members are strengthened through gene therapy, having either been injected with the "genes" of a deceased veteran leader, or otherwise having their nucleotide alignment rearranged to resemble this leader's DNA. In essence, this is obviously genetic modification but from a weapons or defense standpoint. Could genetic modification to make soldiers better at fighting, with augmented senses, reflexes, and combat skills? Could this happen in real life?

Dr Steven Block: Is it possible to genetically engineer someone so that they're immune to various types of viral attack? The answer is in some cases, yes.

A virus usually tries to target something that's important, rather than something that's not important. That said, is it possible to genetically engineer people to either be immune to diseases or to have various strengths against various diseases? Again, this is one of these things that's easier to do on paper.

The fact of the matter, though, as you know, is that if gene therapy were really practical today, everyone would be doing it. It's the trillion-dollar question for the biomedical industry at the moment. For many years people have been trying to figure out how to change the genome of people on a permanent basis, which would render them unsusceptible to diseases. If we could target the genes of viruses—diabetes, ALS—and fix them, or get rid of the ones that cause bad problems, we could make everybody immune to a host of diseases that have plagued mankind since the dawn of time.

They've then tried to put in the molecules that would cause those genes to get spliced in appropriate ways. They get this to work in cell culture, sometimes in animals, but then they try it out on humans and sometimes it works, but others it doesn't—sometimes so much so that the person dies. Practical gene therapy doesn't really exist yet because none of it has actually worked. We always seem to be just around the corner from making gene therapy practical, but I should also point out that we've been just around the corner from learning how to stop cancer for the last 50 years, and yet we haven't been able to stop cancer.

Back to your Genome Soldiers – it may become possible. When and if gene therapy becomes possible, then the sky's the limit. It may become possible to produce people who are immune to a host of diseases. It may become possible to cure people of genetic diseases that they have.

Could I imagine Genome Soldiers? Yes, I think anyone who's followed the literature could probably imagine this, but I don't think we're there yet. I think this is, for the moment, a little bit of science fiction. Gene therapy is certainly going to be with us in the next 100 years, but the real question is if it's going to with us the next ten to 20 years. I wouldn't want to make a bet on it either way.

It's worth pointing out that molecular biology, like any tool, can be used for good or evil. The reason why people are investing millions of dollars in this is because the good it could do could be fabulous. Of course, once we have the tools to rid people of disease, the same tool could make people come down with disease, so it's a double-edged sword.

I wanted to point out that this is rarely brought up, because the technology for doing good things, the technology for resisting biological weapons, is being developed at the same time and is often the same technology as producing black biology or biological weapons. So what I think you can anticipate in the future is kind of a war of escalation. Sure, somebody can produce a biological weapon, but the same technology that produces that weapon might be used to fight that weapon.
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https://nypost.com/2020/11/19/scientists...SocialFlow


What could possibly go wrong?!?!?

[INSERT IMAGES FROM PLANET OF THE APES]

**Of course it was Japan and Germany. *facepalm*

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Well, now:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-m...ce=twitter

Quote:As a Utah helicopter crew buzzed over the southeastern part of the state looking for bighorn sheep last week, sitting beneath them in the middle of the desert was a bright shiny monolith, the stuff of sci-fi sagas.

Pilot Bret Hutchings of the state Department of Public Safety recalled someone on board spotting the gleaming metal object firmly implanted in a small clearing set against the redness of the rocks and sand below.

“He’s like, whoa, whoa, whoa, turn around, turn around,” Hutchings told KSL-TV in Salt Lake City. “There’s this thing, there’s this thing back there. We’ve got to go look at it.”

After Hutchings set their helicopter down in the remote area, which remains undisclosed to discourage a rush of gawkers, they got a closer look, but found “no obvious indication” of how it got there, the public safety department said.

Images released by the department show the monolith coming up to the shoulders of a man standing on the shoulders of another after the discovery last Wednesday.

Hutchings joked about the object’s possible other-worldly origins and the obvious parallel to the classic 1968 Stanley Kubrick film, but thought the answer was more down to Earth.

“I’m assuming it is some new wave artist or something, or somebody who just is a big ‘2001: A Space Odyssey’ fan,” he said.

In the film, an alien monolith is a recurring symbol that appears to play a key role in man’s evolution from the apes.
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This is going to end up being a publicity stunt for a movie or something, right?

https://abcnews.go.com/US/monolith-disco...itter_abcn

Quote:The monolith that mysteriously appeared out of nowhere in the Utah desert was removed from its location in the middle of the night over the weekend while a similar structure showed up in Europe, according to officials and witnesses.

However, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) reassured the public that whoever took the 10- to 12-foot vertical metal object from its desert location was not from out of this world.

The agency said agents discovered Saturday that the structure was gone from its location in the southeastern Utah desert. Desert rocks marked the spot where the silver-colored object once stood.

.....

While the monolith no longer has a footprint in the U.S., a similar structure appeared out of nowhere in Romania over the weekend. Onlookers spotted a similar metal structure in the eastern Romanian city of Piatra Neamț and they shared videos and photos of the structure on social media.
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People used Google Maps to figure out that the original one had been sitting there for about 4 years before it was discovered. It was also noted that Westworld was filming in the area during that timeframe.

The new one is probably just a copycat.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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I want one in my yard, complete with high pitched scream tone when undesirables try to touch it.
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(12-01-2020, 09:16 AM)farsight Wrote: People used Google Maps to figure out that the original one had been sitting there for about 4 years before it was discovered. It was also noted that Westworld was filming in the area during that timeframe.

The new one is probably just a copycat.

Was there a monolith on Westworld?
"I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on Earth."--Steve McQueen
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Arecibo telescope collapses, ending 57-year run

[Image: arecibo-collapse-ht-jt-120120_1606841061...x9_992.jpg]
I used to be with "it", but then they changed what "it" was. Now, what I'm with isn't "it", and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me.   -Grandpa Simpson
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Somewhere, Sean Bean felt a cold shiver run down his back for no apparent reason.

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And Jodie Foster wiped away a tear.
There are weapons in my hands, my hands are weapons.
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(12-01-2020, 12:33 PM)hammerhead Wrote:
(12-01-2020, 09:16 AM)farsight Wrote: People used Google Maps to figure out that the original one had been sitting there for about 4 years before it was discovered. It was also noted that Westworld was filming in the area during that timeframe.

The new one is probably just a copycat.

Was there a monolith on Westworld?

I... don't think so?

But there were a lot of building materials, and perhaps a bored worker or two...

My thought was that a prop designer tried to take the initiative and mock up his idea for a sentient AI... then found out the sentient AI would be a fully nude Thandie Newton, and hid his monolith idea in the desert out of shame.
Gamertag: Tweakee
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I could’ve sworn it collapsed a few years ago.
If I could change to liquid, I'd fill the cracks and bend the rocks.
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(12-01-2020, 08:10 PM)turingmachine75 Wrote: I could’ve sworn it collapsed a few years ago.

That's because you've seen it collapse a number of times in Goldeneye.

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If I recall correctly, the dish went through at least one period of disrepair. The suspended array was always going to be the bigger problem.
"I'd rather wake up in the middle of nowhere than in any city on Earth."--Steve McQueen
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(12-01-2020, 08:58 PM)hammerhead Wrote: If I recall correctly, the dish went through at least one period of disrepair.

Is that the period when it collapsed on a dying 006?

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https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/07/...-millennia

Huh. Roman concrete was still getting stronger centuries after it was poured?

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bigbaddaboom

Drone Video Shows Dramatic Moment of Arecibo Observatory Collapse
I used to be with "it", but then they changed what "it" was. Now, what I'm with isn't "it", and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me.   -Grandpa Simpson
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(12-03-2020, 08:13 PM)vtran Wrote: bigbaddaboom

Drone Video Shows Dramatic Moment of Arecibo Observatory Collapse

Hollywood should have taken the opportunity for insane stock footage and set up some cameras to record the demolition.

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(12-01-2020, 04:58 PM)Overlord Wrote: Somewhere, Sean Bean felt a cold shiver run down his back for no apparent reason.

(12-01-2020, 05:27 PM)Jones Wrote: And Jodie Foster wiped away a tear.


And Jason Patric makes lunch plans.
"Nooj's true feelings on any given subject are unknown and unknowable. He is the butterfly flapping its wings in Peking. He is chaos and destruction and you shall never see his true form." - Merriweather

My Steam ID: yizashigreyspear
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https://www.yahoo.com/news/scientists-ac...07572.html

Seems like I've seen the "we had no idea life could exist here" story half a dozen times now.  There was that toxic cave in Eastern Europe (Romania or Turkey, I think), there are the extremophile organisms that live near volcanic vents in the deep ocean, and now we've got critters thriving beneath a few thousand feet of ice.

I'm pretty sure those scientists mucking around where they don't belong is eventually going to result in this:

[Image: source.gif]

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...or terraforming Mars!
Gamertag: Tweakee
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Pretty
God
Damned
Cool!



I used to be with "it", but then they changed what "it" was. Now, what I'm with isn't "it", and what's "it" seems weird and scary to me.   -Grandpa Simpson
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Awe inspiring. Where's Analog Olmos these days?
"I don't do tag-teams with blood relatives". Kenny Powers.
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(02-22-2021, 07:08 PM)bluelouboyle Wrote: Awe inspiring.  Where's Analog Olmos these days?

Anal posts regularly on the discord.  His NASA updates are always interesting.

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Man, that gives me goosebumps.

So, we eventually get to the Moon and to Mars. Do we go and pick up the heat shields and rovers and other debris from previous landings, or do we leave them as monuments to previous exploration?
"Wilford Brimley can't be bothered to accept praise. He doesn't act because he thinks people will enjoy his work. He acts because it's his goddamned job." --Will Harris, AV Club
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Take only pictures; leave only phenolic impregnated carbon ablator.
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(02-23-2021, 11:20 AM)commodorejohn Wrote: Take only pictures; leave only phenolic impregnated carbon ablator.

And Matt Damon.  I'm sick of inflating the national debt to save his entitled ass.

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How do you get on discord?
"I don't do tag-teams with blood relatives". Kenny Powers.
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Hopefully, this malaria vaccine will come through trials successfully:

https://academictimes.com/first-vaccine-...-rna-tech/
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