Saturday, May 14, 2022

Quantum Biology - 10

I. Synthetic Range

Fig. 1 The Range of Synthetic

II. Synthetic Censorship

The Small Things Considered blog does not consider 'things' it does not judge to be "small" when Dredd Blog makes comments there now, but warmly embraces "synthetic ranges" (Fig. 1, Fig. 2).

Fig. 2 "Synthetic" Is In "Small Things" Range?

As you can see, my link at the end of my comment was to: The Shape Shifters Of Bullshitistan - 25.

That post was about the perplexing development in the science commentariat concerning what is alive and what is dead.

That perplexing development is generally focused on whether or not viruses are alive, but it also includes whether or not DNA is alive or not (The Epigenetics of Viruses).

III. Back To The Synthetic Future

At first I was perplexed by their banning of my ideas from that blog by a lecturer at an institute in Berlin, Germany.

More research cleared my mind of any perplexities as to why I was targeted when I ran across this on the website of that institute:

"The research fields of the seven departments cover the entire spectrum of modern biotechnology in industrial and medical applications."

(Institut Fur Biotechnologie, emphasis added). Students from that realm have grown up into "the framework of synthetic ecology" which is:

"Unlike naturally occurring biological systems, which are generally complicated by multiple variables and difficult to isolate components, synthetic systems can be simplified to allow for experiments that would be too difficult to interpret if done in their full natural context."

(Synthetic ecology). The particular Small Things Considered post I commented on (Bacterial Range Expansion) was written by a grown up scientist who now "uses a bottom-up approach within the framework of synthetic ecology".

He is now along with other excommunicators on that blog, a high priest of synthetic technology, having advanced into the realm of "Basic or Fake" in one synthetic dictionary, "pseudo" in another (Science and the "Pseudo-Event"), but in any case definitely in the historically defined realm of "techno-magic" (The Machine Religion).

And thus, like all such high priests, they can excommunicate those who are anathema to their pursuits. 

I mean, I had posted comments on that blog since 2014 (Talmudic Question #115), so, the olde guarde was less synthetic when their policy was more Americana:

"Welcome to Small Things Considered! This blog shares the excitement of
unexpected and unusual stories of the microbial world. The main
contributors to this blog are listed on your right. But we do not just
publish our own content, we have many contributions from students,
postdocs, and others. We enjoy this, in part because theirs is a world
where scientific communication will increasingly involve social media.
And this blog is a social medium. Don’t think that we do this to avoid
work. We are dedicated editors who spend a lot of time going over the
material we receive. We are eager to hear from you, so send us your
comments, criticisms, submissions, ideas, or whatever else comes into
your mind. Thank you for visiting."

Ergo, things are getting synthetic-er and synthetic-er.

IV. The Synthetic Doll

The souring began on a post that featured dice shaped microbes, to which I replied:

"Cuby entities may also inhabit SARS-CoV-2 for a similar reason (The Doll As Metaphor - 3). ;-)"

(Disqus). The Dredd Blog post linked-to in that comment (preserved on Disqus) brought up the notion that biologists, like cosmologists, are prone to attaining the "playing with dolls" degree of imagination (The Doll As Metaphor, 2, 3, 4, 5).

That critical Dredd Blog series now is overflowing into other Dredd Blog series:

"The Origin of Ubiquitous
Brought To You By Firesign Theatre

That is not easily within our grasp because we have to do the goo goo doll thingy.

The problem with this carbon-based picture is that carbon is a "late-bloomer" (compared to the other dolls):

"The Big Bang was not an explosion in space, as the theory's name might suggest. Instead, it was [natural doll and selection doll quivering, causing] the appearance of space [space doll] everywhere in the universe [universe doll], researchers have said. According to the Big Bang theory, the universe was born [dolls R born] as a very hot, very dense, single point in space [space doll and universe doll are hot, dense, and single].

Cosmologists are unsure what happened before this moment" (Space).

So, the hot doll, a.k.a. universe doll, banged but did not explode, but the doll scientists do not know why it didn't choose to explode (gay dolls?).

Then the universe doll and space doll looked around at the environment [environment doll] and decided that the best thing to do was to change and become a gas or two while having an expansive feeding frenzy:

"When the universe [doll] was very young — something like a hundredth of a billionth of a trillionth of a trillionth of a second (whew!) [the time doll was not conjured until shortly after that] — it underwent an incredible growth spurt. During this burst of expansion, which is known as inflation [inflation doll], the universe [doll] grew exponentially and doubled in size at least 90 times [what about space doll and environment doll?]."

Fig. 4 First Doll Uterus

"The universe [doll] was expanding, and as it expanded, it got cooler and less dense [enlightenment]," David Spergel, a theoretical [doll] astrophysicist at Princeton University in Princeton, N.J., told After inflation, the universe [doll] continued to grow, but at a slower rate [diet doll]."

"As space [doll] expanded, the universe [doll] cooled and matter formed [matter doll]."

"Light chemical elements were created [light chemical dolls] within the first three minutes of the universe [doll's] formation. As the universe [doll] expanded, temperatures cooled and protons and neutrons collided [proton and neutron dolls] to make deuterium [deuterium doll], which is an isotope of hydrogen [of course dummy]. Much of this deuterium [deuterum doll] combined to make helium [helium and shelium dolls]."

"For the first 380,000 years after the Big Bang [bang doll], however, the intense heat [heat doll] from the universe's creation [heat doll was hot] made it essentially too hot for light to shine [it's dark inside hot dolls]. Atoms [atom dolls] crashed together with enough force [force doll] to break up into a dense, opaque plasma of protons, neutrons and electrons that scattered light like fog [fog doll]."(Space)

"Every carbon atom in the universe was created by stars [star dolls]" (ScienceDaily, emphasis added)."

(Quantum Biology - 9). Yes, it is true that quote in "Quantum Biology - 9" laid on the sarcasm quite thickly.

I did so because the science commentariat reporter really doubled down on the gimmickry, so the transparent barriers of high priest Latin words did not protect the usual synthetic fantasy.

The synthetic essences of the science doll really came through.

But I by no means have an exclusive viewpoint on synthetic science:

"Science, technology and the social sciences today function on "unintelligible frontiers," Boorstin writes. The great deeds of science are less than half-intelligible to most of us. "Facts," even scientific facts, have lost their touch on the American public, giving way to convenient, fabricated information and shinier, ambiguous images. Many scientific events and achievements have become fabricated and even synthetic."

(Science and the "Pseudo-Event"). Thus, it is an honor to be on their hit list, just as it is an honor to be on the hit list of Oil-Qaeda (Oil-Qaeda & MOMCOM Conspire To Commit Depraved-Heart Murder- 6).

V. Closing Comments

You have now been here:

"Sometimes I feel so low-down and disgusted
Can't help but wonder what's happenin' to my companions
Are they lost or are they found?
Have they counted the cost it'll take to bring down
All their earthly principles they're gonna have to abandon?
There's a slow, slow train comin' up around the bend"

(Slow Train, Bob Dylan). 

The next post in this series is here, the previous post in this series is here.

Friday, May 13, 2022

The Shape Shifters Of Bullshitistan - 25

Fig. 1 What Is The Difference
Between Life And Death

I. Savvy Background

The question asked at the bottom of the cool graphic to the left (Fig. 1) would seem to be easier to answer if we lived in a civilization that is savvy vs one that is not.

The heightened elevation represented by the notion 'savvy civilization' would seem to indicate a civilization with a savvy nomenclature (Good Nomenclature: A Matter of Life and Death).

It would also seem, then, that a savvy nomenclature would clearly delineate the difference between 'life' and 'death'; but more than that, the more advanced institutions of learning within a savvy civilization would be the best place to find the savvy meaning and the savvy difference between life and other words, what is alive and what is not alive (Weekend Rebel Science Excursion - 27).

II. The Slowest Savvy

At one time "the most often quoted historian" hiked his way through the pages of time, which are composed mostly of history with some herstory, to seek the savvy that everyone supposed would be there.

Some say that cognitive hike made him more savvy, others say not, because his conclusions indicate that there aren't hopeful historical indications of savvy civilizations:

But always TCS [the creep state] is primarily the population segment diagnosed as a despotic minority which the once most-often-quoted historian, Toynbee, fingered as one of the members of the trinity of extinction that he found in all civilizations that were about to become very successful at becoming extinct:

That something is the dementia that produces and ends up in suicide:
"In other words, a society does not ever die 'from natural causes', but always dies from suicide or murder --- and nearly always from the former, as this chapter has shown."
(A Study of History, by Arnold J. Toynbee). There is no cure for the final symptom of that group dementia, there is only prevention by way of avoiding it altogether in the first place.

The components of that group dementia were pointed out in an encyclopedia piece concerning that historian quoted above:
"In the Study Toynbee examined the rise and fall of 26 civilizations in the course of human history, and he concluded that they rose by responding successfully to challenges under the leadership of creative minorities composed of elite leaders. Civilizations declined when their leaders stopped responding creatively, and the civilizations then sank owing to the sins of nationalism, militarism, and the tyranny of a despotic minority." ...
(Encyclopedia Britannica, emphasis added). The show stopper, in terms of remedy, in this type of group dementia is that it is a contagious dementia.
(Etiology of Social Dementia - 18). That particular "minority" is not a racial or ethnic minority, rather, it is primarily composed of a destructive suicidal trance (Choose Your Trances Carefully, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8).

(Arrested Development: The Creep State). Where does that slow trek Toynbee took over the slow pages of time leave us?

III. The Savvy of Things To Come

So is this the time for 'savvy' to arise in our civilization? 

We can say that civilizations past have not been at a place that has a savvy track record concerning the knowledge of the difference between living and non-living, the difference between life and death.

If Toynbee looked through our pages of time composed of history with some herstory, would he find that savvy civilization?

Let's explore where are we now concerning "the knowledge of the difference between living and non-living, life and death" for some clues.

First of all, can we say that our nomenclature is loud and clear concerning the ability to distinguish living from non-living?

Let's revisit some shapes of "microbes" (the 'things' in Fig. 1):

"History and Etymology for microbe ... International Scientific Vocabulary micr- + Greek bios life"

("Microbe.” Merriam-Webster, emphasis added). And:

"microbe: an extremely small living thing that can only be seen with a microscope"

(Britannica dictionary, emphasis added). And:

"The latter half of the 19th century also saw the inception of the word ‘microbe,’ which is formed from 2 Greek words, ‘mikros’ and ‘bios,’ meaning 'small LIFE'" ... 

"Adding specificity to microbial conversations also allows for the introduction of nuance into the concept of a microbe, which can be especially helpful for introductory science classrooms. While ‘microbe’ is a broad umbrella term that is helpful to introduce beginners to the field, understanding the differences between microbial groups builds competency in identifying the roles of specific sub-groups in human and environmental health. The role of soil microbes in sequestering carbon is a hot topic in climate research, but scientists typically measure bacterial and fungal activity to understand soil carbon storage.
Definitions and names need to evolve with our ever-expanding knowledge, which is no easy task. ‘Microbe’ is a convenient and practical term to introduce novices to the multitudes of the microbial world, but professional microbiologists might want to ask themselves what they mean when they say ‘microbe’: did they study the fungal community? Or the bacterial community? Or the phages that infect bacteria? In the microbial world, the devil is in the details."

(ASM What Counts as a Microbe, emphasis added). Evolution applies to words too, so, are viruses living so as to qualify for the microbe designation ('small life')?

Well, evolution gets "jiggy wid it":

"Viruses can’t reproduce on their own (unlike bacteria) so they aren’t considered ‘living’ (Difference Between)...

"Are viruses living entities? I don’t believe so" (Viruses and the Tree of Life)...

"The issue of whether or not viruses are alive, like the issue of whether or not rocks are alive, my computer is alive, Dredd Blog is alive, etc., depends on the quality of a language's nomenclature ...

One would, at first blush, think that scientists would be the first professionals to develop a professional nomenclature without defects, but think again ..." (Some Of My Best Friends Are Germs)

Since there are more viruses than stars in the sky, one has to wonder why a civilization's relevant institution doesn't have a consensus on whether either a virus or a star is alive or dead (and still consider itself to be 'savvy')... eh?

But I digress, so ...

IV. We Are Here

Maybe the most savvy of activities in Western Civilization, elections, will clear up the notion of dead or alive?

Fig. 2 Pence Wanted Dead Or Alive

Maybe the civics of freedom in the home of the free and brave will clear it up?

Is our 'democracy' alive, dead, or like microbes, just being shaped (The Shapeshifters of Bullshitistan, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24)?

After "the greatest reelection victory of all time", The Shape Shifters Of Bullshitistan (TSSOB) held a celebration (see Fig. 2 and video below).

A special government committee is holding a followup celebration in June to render what many say will be more savvy (House January 6 committee plans eight hearings for June).

V. The Savvy Savior Then And Now

The 'savvy savior' wasn't discovered by Toynbee as he hiked through the pages of time.

But the savvy savior then is the same savior now:

"Technocracy itself is an immortality ideology that, although it is coupled with materialism, has as part of its makeup an element of the magical and a belief that new tools and innovations provide solutions to both the small day-to-day problems of life and the larger problems of human happiness and mortality. Technology is entrancing, and, functionally, technologists become creators of magic and the wizards of today, claiming the same authority over technology that doctors claim over human health or shamans over the cursed. This has always been so, going back to ancestral peoples who learned to use fire, tools, wind, and wheels. Even in subsistence societies, technology has a greater impact on a variety of sociological variables than do supernatural or religious beliefs (Nolan and Lenski 1996)."
[I repeat]"Even in subsistence societies, technology has a greater impact on a variety of sociological variables than do supernatural or religious beliefs (Nolan and Lenski 1996)."

(The Machine Religion, quoting "Ecology and Society"). The problem is that the 'savior' of civilization then and now is not savvy in the realm of life and death.


"...human society is cavalierly in the process of (in terms of biotic life) "self destruction," but in machine language it is "regeneration"...

"It is as if "The Matrix" movie theme (machine-intelligence cultivates and farms biological humanity for producing energy) is the reality (The Matriarch of The Matrix, 2, 3).

"We" are practicing a self-destruct-sequence that comes from deep within us, all the way down to the machines (the atoms and molecules)..."

(ibid). Within current civilization Ecocide and nuclear war are in the killing it niches near the finish line.

The previous post in this series is here.

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

Cultural Epigenetic Messages

Fig. 1 (Josh Edelson Photo)

I. Wireless Thinking

When we think of wireless, we may not think of the speed of light.

A wireless signal travels at the speed of light, free from the limitations of signals in a physical wire (Epigenetic Messages). 

So, whether the image at Fig. 1 is coming from your computer's screen, your cell phone's screen, or a photograph, it is moving literally at maximum speed into your eyes, then much more slowly into your internal processing system.

Not only that, since "a picture is worth a thousand words" the picture activates your brain's cognitive system and you "get the picture" get a picture.

But, will you get all of the message in the picture as your amygdala processes it?

"By that I mean the amygdala, which is the part of our brain that receives all the sensory input.

That is, all the sensory input from our ears, eyes, nose, mouth, and skin, before any other part of our brain receives the data, which it then processes with the additional help of our cultural amygdala."

(On The Memorial Daze - 4). You will only "get the picture" if your currently accessible knowledge contains the relevant information on fresh water reservoirs impacted by drought in California (the picture is of a drought-impacted fresh water reservoir).

In fact, what we "make of it" depends on our current brain's sub-conscious cognition (Hypothesis: The Cultural Amygdala - 5).

II. Schoolin'

The cost of education is way, way up there these days, and on a lot of subjects the knowledge transferred from professors and textbooks is transitory.

For example, check out the costs of transitory education at Stanford (Student Budget).

Nevertheless, today you can attend a class at Stanford concerning the cutting edge of epigenetics at no cost by watching the video at the bottom of today's post.

It allows you to participate free of tuition as a student in a lecture in the classroom of Professor Robert Sapolsky

The lecture features some of the more recent advances in epigenetics.

If you like what you see, more is available for reading at no cost (Robert Sapolsky Rocks).

III. Wireless Messages Change Genes

The history of molecular biology as it relates to genealogy is all too often a story of genieology IMO (On The Origin of Genieology).

Advance yourself, move away from that.

Dr. Sapolsky pulls away the covers to reveal that the 'environment' or environments we inhabit contain messaging systems that can deliver messages which alter our genetic makeup in various degrees.
IV. Dredd Blog Is Wid It
Regular Dredd Blog readers know we have been into this for quite a while.
Here is one of the many ways it is done:

"A group of US marketing researchers claim that brand owners can make their customers believe they had a better experience of a product or service than they really did by bombarding them with positive messages after the event. Advocates of the technique, known as "memory morphing", claim it can be used to improve customers' perceptions of products and encourage them to repeat their purchases and recommend brands to friends.

"When asked, many consumers insist that they rely primarily on their own first-hand experience with products – not advertising – in making purchasing decisions. Yet, clearly, advertising can strongly alter what consumers remember about their past, and thus influence their behaviours," he writes in his book, How Customers Think. He says that memories are malleable, changing every time they come to mind, and that brands can use this to their advantage. "What consumers recall about prior product or shopping experiences will differ from their actual experiences if marketers refer to those past experiences in positive ways," he continues."

(A Structure RE: Corruption of Memes - 3). The "used car salesman" psychology of this was discovered in a different way before the molecular biologists got there:

"Thought is physical. Learning requires a physical brain change: Receptors for neurotransmitters change at the synapses, which changes neural circuitry. Since thinking is the activation of such circuitry, somewhat different thinking re­quires a somewhat different brain. Brains change as you use them-even unconsciously. It's as if your car changed as you drove it, say from a stick shift gradually to an automatic." 
(The Toxic Bridge To Everywhere, quoting Dr. Lakoff)).  These techniques are used by more than marketers of products: 

"Beyond such internal mechanisms of variation, environment-driven plasticity lends yet another layer of complexity to the brain. The brain is capable of remarkable remodeling in response to experience. Signals originating from the environment can cause both widespread and localized adaptations. At the level of individual cells, structure and function are continually changing with the environment in a dance of lifelong brain plasticity, and some experiences, such as stress or physical exercise, affect the growth, survival, and fate of newborn neurons in neurogenic regions of the brain.
Traditionally, cells are defined by the tissue to which they belong as well as their particular functional role or morphology. This classification represents a developmental trajectory that begins early in embryogenesis and is hardwired into each cell. But other differences among cells are more subtle. Multi-dimensional analyses of gene expression and other metrics have revealed remarkable heterogeneity among cells of the same traditional “type.” Cells exist in different degrees of maturation, activation,plasticity, and morphology. Once we begin to consider all of the subtle cell-to-cell variations, it becomes clear that the number of cell types is much greater than ever imagined. In fact, it may be more appropriate to place some cells along a continuum rather than into categories at all.
Brain cells in particular may be as unique as the people to which they belong. This genetic, molecular, and morphological diversity of the brain leads to functional variation that is likely necessary for the higher-order cognitive processes that are unique to humans. Such mosaicism may have a dark side, however. Although neuronal diversification is normal, it is possible that there is an optimal extent of diversity for brain function and that anything outside those bounds—too low or too high—may be pathological. For example, if neurons fail to function optimally in their particular role or environment, deficits could arise. Similarly, if neurons diversify and become too specialized to a given role, they may lose the plasticity required to change and function normally within a larger circuit. As researchers continue to probe the enormous complexity of the brain at the single-cell level, they will likely begin to uncover the answers to these questions—as well as those we haven’t even thought to ask yet."
(Hypothesis: The Cultural Amygdala - 5). It will be worth your time to listen to the recent historical changes Professor Sapolsky reveals.

Tuesday, May 10, 2022

Genomes For Sale Cheap

Hurry, hurry step right up
On Sale Cheap

One wonders if there anything that will escape the "used car salesman psychology" (which is an offshoot of the root of all evil):

"But what if it had instead remained in the hands of a small number of private entities who made it their business to sell exclusive, “early access” insights on emerging variants to Wall Street trading firms? There are no doubt strong incentives to divine the signal from the noise in freshly generated variant sequencing data, and knowing first could make all the difference. Or what if the genomic data for omicron hadn’t been available at all, because the researchers who found it had little incentive to share the information?

Unfortunately, in the rapidly evolving genomic surveillance landscape, neither of these negative scenarios is out of the question for future variants."


"Public domain repositories. But what is public domain sharing? And why isn’t it the preferred way to share coronavirus sequence data? Public domain databases such as the US National Center for Biotechnology Information’s Genbank or the European Nucleotide Archive are instrumental for biology research, and almost all genetic sequence data is, in fact, shared in the public domain. But public domain sharing—whether it’s music, software, photography, art, or genetic data—means exactly that. When you put your work into the public domain, it is now owned “by the public.” This means anyone can use it for any reason without attribution or any obligation to share benefits.

There are virtues to public domain sharing of genetic sequence data. The public domain is a fantastic way for society to extract the maximum value of genetic data once it has already been generated, for instance by taxpayer-funded research, because the products, in principle, can be used for the benefit of everyone. But its virtues are inextricable from its drawbacks. A major problem with public domain sharing is that scientists do not have any incentive to generate or rapidly share viral genome data via this mechanism. Instead, they often allow their data to sit on computers until they get a manuscript accepted or a grant funded. This reticence to rapidly share genetic data is a recipe for disaster in public health emergencies like pandemics, because fresh viral sequence data from many geographies are needed to discover new variants, to determine which ones are growing faster than others, and to keep diagnostics and vaccines up to date."

(Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, emphasis added). You have probably noticed that virus pandemics are becoming viral marketing pandemics.

It is too big to fail (On The Origin Of The Home Of COVID-19, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27).