This is the companion piece to my short story, The Moralbiont. It will discuss some of the references and science from the story. If you have not read the story yet, I would highly advise reading it first.
The conversation between Olivia and her grandfather about his thesis supposedly being covered in cow skin is a reference to a question from the Voight-Kampff test. In the Blade Runner franchise, the Voight-Kampff test is administered to those suspected of being a replicant, a human-like android lacking empathy. By monitoring the physiological responses to questions about shocking or repellent situations, you are able to tell if the subject is a real human or a replicant. I have neither seen Ridley Scott’s classic Blade Runner film nor read the original novel by Philip K. Dick but I did play the 1997 video-game which is where I became aware of the question.
Like my briefcase? Department issue, baby hide. 100% genuine human baby hide.
Participants at the Lange Nacht der Forschung learning all about plants.
Despite the rather portentous date of Friday the 13th, it was also the second time I was involved with the Lange Nacht der Forschung or Long Night of Research. My first was in May 2016. This is an event to bring science to the public that happens every two years. Continue reading →
Chibuihem Amalaha has “scientifically proven” gay marriage is wrong. (Source: ThisDay Live)
Here’s something interesting that popped up on my Facebook feed. Apparently, Chibuihem Amalaha, a Nigerian student, is claiming that he has scientifically proven that gay marriage is wrong. This seemed really hard to believe and so I went to the original article. It looks genuine. It’s in the “Life and Style” section of “the preferred newspaper among the business, political and diplomatic elite” in Nigeria. While Amalaha may very well believe his work is a breakthrough, it’s really just heavily-flawed nonsense. Continue reading →
Currently I have a lot of work going on, a test and presentation for Japanese and trying to finish lab work and then write up my masters, so it’s hard to find time to post. I do have two good ideas though so we’ll see what happens. In the meantime you can follow this link to see a cool talk by Ed Yong on mind-controlling parasites.
How big is an exabyte? One million terabytes. In 2007 the world’s total computer data was, compressed, 295 exabytes. How many hard-drives would it take to stores all that data? Assuming you get a large 2 tb hard-drive it would take 148 million! Now what if I told you you could store all that in less than one gram of DNA? Nature and Science both have reports of a paper, published in Science, that shows how DNA can be used to store data. Continue reading →
Early this week (correction: last week. I started writing this last week but forgot to update the wording) I attended the Faculty of Health Sciences’ Bioethics Day. I found the talks very interesting and, at times, confusing. I won’t deny that there were some points that I just did not understand but I at least take comfort in that many other people, I think all my academic seniors, seemed just as confused. There were four talks in three sections, namely research ethics, professionalism and circumcision. I want to share, very briefly, what was said.
I was going to share everything in a single post but it’s actually quite a bit of effort writing everything up and I’ve been tired recently so I’ve broken it down a bit. I’ll post two talks now and the next two later. Continue reading →