Thursday, 17 December 2009
Another interesting disucssion at Kira Cafe in Second Life
Kira Cafe http://www.kira.org/
[9:09] Vic Michalak: It is more interesting than it might sound at first... :)
[9:09] Vic Michalak: ....trust me....
[9:09] Jnix Fallon: :-)
[9:09] Vic Michalak: In some cases I think you will find the objects themselves and how they operate to be of fascinating interest. In each case I will add an interdisciplinary twist to our discussions.
[9:10] Vic Michalak: Hi Sophia... come on in and join us!
[9:10] Vic Michalak: I will also be using visuals for future sessions to help aid understanding and discussion.
[9:10] sophia Placebo: hi all
[9:10] casta Oh is Online
[9:10] Aquiel Aero: Hi Robert!
[9:10] Rober1236 Jua: Hello Aquiel
[9:10] Rober1236 Jua: all
[9:10] Vic Michalak: In the past we have just talked, but if English is not your native language, it is easy to get a bit lost...
[9:11] Kyla Damone is Offline
[9:11] Vic Michalak: ...and "pictures say a 1000 words", yes?
[9:11] Vic Michalak: ---------- In this first session I would like to introduce our upcoming topics:
[9:11] Doc O's Snow Emitter: Snow radius set to 5.000000 meters.
[9:11] Vic Michalak: [This is actually our 11th KISS session, but the first in this series...]
[9:12] Vic Michalak: 1. Perhaps the ultimate biological device that encodes information is DNA.
[9:12] Vic Michalak: Most people are aware that DNA stores information about them, but does anyone here know what kind of information that is? And how the information is used in the body?
[9:12] Dali Waverider: protein production, for one
[9:12] Rober1236 Jua: The information is used to produce proteins
[9:12] Aquiel Aero: the information is the sequence of amino acids in protiens
[9:12] Vic Michalak: Yes! Mostly....
[9:12] Rober1236 Jua: So we all took biologly
[9:12] sophia Placebo: it is protien sequencing
[9:13] brook Coberts: :-)
[9:13] MojoMaggie Sixpence: *smiles
[9:13] Vic Michalak: So what is the significance of making proteins?
[9:13] Vic Michalak: Or DNA storing that information?
[9:13] Aquiel Aero: they are the movers and shakers of the body
[9:13] Rober1236 Jua: Protiens are used to make everything about us
[9:13] Vic Michalak: Yes.... that is the basic idea....
[9:13] Rober1236 Jua: The "building blocks"
[9:13] sophia Placebo: they are the body , almost
[9:13] MojoMaggie Sixpence: yes.
[9:13] Jnix Fallon: DNA changes only over 100k years right?
[9:13] Joanna Wombat is Offline
[9:14] sophia Placebo: who knows
[9:14] Vic Michalak: The way DNA stores information and expresses it is really quite fantastic....
[9:14] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Depends.
[9:14] Vic Michalak: Well, Jnix... our DNA is constantly changing....
[9:14] Vic Michalak: Some changes are kept and others are discarded....
[9:15] Jnix Fallon: ok
[9:15] Rober1236 Jua: We call that evolution in the long term
[9:15] Vic Michalak: In the next session, I would like to present and discuss with you how DNA stores information and what is done with that information that turns into you and every other living thing.
[9:15] Vic Michalak: Yes, Robert... the basis for evolution....
[9:15] Vic Michalak: But here comes the twist... Then I would like to compare how DNA transmits its information to the body to how information is transmitted across the Internet.
[9:15] Vic Michalak: !!!!
[9:16] Kyx Magic: in simple terms the instuction manual for building and regulating biological organisms
[9:16] Vic Michalak: Is anyone here familiar with how the Internet works?
[9:16] Vic Michalak: Kyx... yes, indeed....
[9:16] Vic Michalak: In this way we can discuss how computer-based telecommunications might be improved by applying lessons from the natural world…
[9:16] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Well, a bit.
[9:16] Jnix Fallon: I though it was like mutation accidents over long periods of time that was stored
[9:17] Jnix Fallon: yes to that
[9:17] Kyx Magic: enough to use it, certainly not as well as you do, Vic!
[9:17] Rober1236 Jua: Well I am familiar withthe basics of Internet protocals
[9:17] Vic Michalak: Jnix.... yes... that is it.... some changes are kept for utilitarian reasons.... others do very little... others are lethal and are not passed on....
[9:17] sophia Placebo: totally clueless re internet
[9:18] FigBash Snook is Online
[9:18] Vic Michalak: Robert.... yes, protocols are like the "instructions" on the Internet...
[9:18] Elizabeth Weinberg is Online
[9:18] Vic Michalak: sophia... that is the interesting point about exploring these subjects with many fields of study in mind....
[9:18] Vic Michalak: Some people know about DNA and how it works....
[9:18] Vic Michalak: Some know about the Internet....
[9:19] Vic Michalak: But it is fascinating when you compare how they both work.....
[9:19] Jnix Fallon: neural network of the world
[9:19] Vic Michalak: ...and see how we might apply what we know about DNA expression to trying to improve our communcations! :)
[9:19] Vic Michalak: Jnix... yes, that might be the ideal....
[9:20] Rober1236 Jua: Well I have some idea maybe where you are going?
[9:20] Vic Michalak: ...except of course that DNA expression is not perfect! Actually the Internet has a better mechanism for dealing with errors....
[9:21] Vic Michalak: Robert... yes, the underlying theme is to explore topics from many scientific points of view.....
[9:21] Rose Springvale is Offline
[9:21] Dali Waverider: DNA, better than UDP, isn't it?
[9:22] Vic Michalak: Well, DNA is more similar to UDP than TCP...but that is for the next session.... :)
[9:22] Vic Michalak: 2. The Antikythera mechanism. Is anyone here familiar with it?
[9:22] Dali Waverider: heh
[9:22] Aquiel Aero: yes, I have heard of it
[9:22] sophia Placebo: nop
[9:22] Kyx Magic: The number of errors the DNA can accumulate before posing a threat to the body is quite astonishing. Did you read the news of the Wellcome Trut scientists cracking the code for 2 types of cancer yesterday? http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/8414124.stm
[9:22] Dali Waverider: Is that the mechanical device that describes the motions of the planets very well?
[9:22] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Well, Discovery Channel version, lol
[9:22] Aquiel Aero: there was a history channel special on it
[9:23] Vic Michalak: Mojo... many of use get our information from the Discovery Channel and other media! :)
[9:23] Spokesman Salomon: Accurate orreries have been around for a long time.
[9:23] toBe Destiny is Online
[9:23] Vic Michalak: Luckily there are several good sources (and bad one) on TV....
[9:23] Spokesman Salomon: (sorry, no pun intended)
[9:24] Jnix Fallon: sone times I think we take a sallow view of natual ly evoled systems untill we look futher into there reason for being
[9:24] FigBash Snook is Offline
[9:24] Vic Michalak: The Antikythera mechanism is a geared device discovered about 100 years ago in a ship wreck off Greece (Antikythera)....
[9:24] Vic Michalak: Jnix... interesting...
[9:24] Jnix Fallon: maybe nature knows better than man
[9:24] Penelope Strathearn is Online
[9:24] Vic Michalak: Well, but we ARE part of nature... sometimes we forget that... :)
[9:25] Jnix Fallon: yup
[9:25] Vic Michalak: The principal interest about the Antikythera device was how long ago it was created (in about 100 BCE), how complicated it is for the time, and what it could calculate.
[9:25] Dali Waverider: nature has had orders of magnitude more time to cull the bad ideas.
[9:25] Moon Adamant is Offline
[9:25] Jnix Fallon: my point
[9:25] Jnix Fallon: man has only a 100yrs
[9:25] Vic Michalak: Dali... yes. slowly but surely... our lifetimes are but the blink of an eye....
[9:25] Vic Michalak: The discovery and examination and function of this device cross many fields of study and it is a fascinating device in and of itself.
[9:26] Spokesman Salomon: Is it Ptolemaic or Copernican?
[9:26] Vic Michalak: Nothing like the Antikythera mechanism was created (or found anyway) for over a 1000 years later....
[9:27] Vic Michalak: Spokesman.... much earlier than both of those......
[9:27] Vic Michalak: 100 BCE...
[9:27] Vic Michalak: Based on observation, not an interpretation of the whole system....
[9:27] Spokesman Salomon: Helio centric or geocentric?
[9:27] Vic Michalak: ....like Ptolemaic and Copernican systems....
[9:28] Vic Michalak: Well, did not have to consider either.....
[9:28] Vic Michalak: ....it simply showed where the planets would be....
[9:28] Vic Michalak: ....and calculated eclipses and such....
[9:28] Rober1236 Jua: It predicts without giving a theory or model
[9:28] Vic Michalak: ...but did not have to have a system in mind to do so....
[9:28] Spokesman Salomon: So it's a calculator, not a model.
[9:28] Vic Michalak: Yes... well put Robert....
[9:28] Rober1236 Jua: its like asking if a calendar puts the sun at the centre of the solar system
[9:29] MojoMaggie Sixpence: the practical information
[9:29] Sashika Szondi is Online
[9:29] Dali Waverider: It's the physical expression of a number of models. A little bit like a program for which we don;t have the spec.
[9:29] Vic Michalak: Spokesman... it is a model of what it.... abstracts the real world and predicts, like any good model....
[9:30] Vic Michalak: Dali... good point... consider it a software program... only an analog mechanical device....
[9:30] Kyx Magic: Apparently that was the pinnacle of many other automatic devices they built there...They liked their robotics in Rhodes...that place was very much the MIT or Sylicon Valley of the ancient times
[9:30] Dali Waverider: oe even the souece code. But we can infer smewhat.
[9:30] Vic Michalak: But the interesting thing is that ist DOES account accurately for the complex motions of Mars.... for example....
[9:31] Vic Michalak: That is goes into retrograde orbit sometimes.....
[9:31] Vic Michalak: Kyx... very interesting point....
[9:31] sophia Placebo: good observers
[9:31] MojoMaggie Sixpence: so it was an extremely sophisticated device
[9:31] Vic Michalak: sophia.... probably the best description.....
[9:31] Vic Michalak: Mojo... yes, very...
[9:32] Vic Michalak: Many functions... very sophisticated, especially for its time...
[9:32] Vic Michalak: 3. How about the Incan quipu (or kipu)? Anyone familiar with this device?
[9:32] Jnix Fallon: ?
[9:32] Aquiel Aero: yes,
[9:33] MojoMaggie Sixpence: "talking knots" info storage sysem of the Inca, no?
[9:33] Vic Michalak: Mojo... yes....
[9:33] Kyx Magic: I'vestrings used for complex calculations
[9:33] sophia Placebo: again nop
[9:33] Moon Adamant is Online
[9:33] Klannex Northmead is Online
[9:33] Vic Michalak: Yes... much like a database today....
[9:33] Kyx Magic: yes, knots, better
[9:33] You decline The Market at la rue de l'Ile de France, Roissy (96, 116, 22) from A group member named Elizabeth Weinberg.
[9:33] Vic Michalak: We do not know much about it, but the knots acted like a digital device....
[9:34] Kyx Magic: some Andean tribes are still using it nowadays!
[9:34] Vic Michalak: The Spanish, unfortunately, destroyed most of them because they thought them magic and far in advance of what they had...
[9:34] Vic Michalak: Kyx... is that so? I did not know they were still used....
[9:35] FigBash Snook is Online
[9:35] Spokesman Salomon: And abacusses are still common in the middle east.
[9:35] Shiva999 Zymurgy is Offline
[9:35] Vic Michalak: Basically it was a set of strings with knots at meaningful locations that could calculate and store information about assets and such...
[9:36] A group member named Elizabeth Weinberg gave you The Market at la rue de l'Ile de France, Roissy (96, 116, 22).
[9:36] Vic Michalak: Yes... abacuses are used many places!
[9:36] Vic Michalak: I saw them in use in Russia in about 2000....
[9:36] Spokesman Salomon: Do you often see them, Soúphia?
[9:36] Rober1236 Jua: I have seen them used a lot in South Korea
[9:36] Kyx Magic: Yes, I watched this documentary sometime ago and I distinctly remember the place was a village not far from a place called 'Laguna Desnuda' - I remember the bizarre name! And there the elders of the village illustrated the use of thee coloured strings and knots
[9:37] Kyx Magic: and you are right, it not only had a practical use (calculations) but also as a divination system of sorts
[9:37] Vic Michalak: Oh? Very interesting.... I was not aware that there was a color factor as well.... Adds another dimension of meaning to the infomrmation storage system....
[9:37] Spokesman Salomon: Numbers often move into mysticism.
[9:38] Kyx Magic: Yes, I mas mesmerized by the notion, reall fascinating
[9:38] Vic Michalak: Hmmm... more study before the session where we talk about quipus! :)
[9:38] sophia Placebo: no spoke , they are not used except in primary schools
[9:38] Vic Michalak: 4. Charles Babbage in the early 1800s created detailed diagrams of a device that we consider to be the first computer, albeit a mechanical and analog one.
[9:38] Vic Michalak: Babbage was a bit ahead of his time. He was able to create portions of his difference machine that could calculate answers to many places......
[9:38] Rober1236 Jua: I have seen one built!
[9:39] Rober1236 Jua: I have some depressing details on that
[9:39] Vic Michalak: Yes?
[9:39] Kyx Magic: not to mention Lady Lovelce! The numbers enchantress
[9:39] Jnix Fallon: it was a monster also
[9:39] Vic Michalak: Kyx... that is part of the story!
[9:39] Rober1236 Jua: I was working as a programmer at the Science Museum in London where they built it
[9:39] Rober1236 Jua: And spoke to a designer who gave me some bad news
[9:39] Vic Michalak: Jnix... yes, a very big machine... but elegant in its working detail... like art...
[9:39] Rober1236 Jua: Too elegant and too detailed, the thing jammed up again and again and again
[9:40] Jnix Fallon: was like a watch?
[9:40] Spokesman Salomon: Think how big electric computers were until very recently.
[9:40] Vic Michalak: Robert... yes... that is where it was.... once copy at least....
[9:40] MojoMaggie Sixpence: There is an area in S.L. named for Babbage...
[9:40] Rober1236 Jua: To get any more out if they needed to get a highly precise electric motor
[9:40] Rober1236 Jua: And that electric motor made in Japan needed a precise computer
[9:41] Vic Michalak: Robert.... actualy the original was before electric motors..... turned by hand crank....
[9:41] Rober1236 Jua: So to build a working babbage engine that could do more than a few runs through a quadradic you need an electric computer to start with
[9:41] Rober1236 Jua: That would never haver worked
[9:41] Vic Michalak: Robert... that is correct!
[9:41] Rober1236 Jua: they tried it and too many parts they got caught up
[9:41] Spokesman Salomon: But the priciples were sound, were they?
[9:41] Rober1236 Jua: It was a wonderful idea before its time
[9:41] Rober1236 Jua: Lovely thing though, truely a work of art
[9:41] MojoMaggie Sixpence: so...nice idea, derailed by inadequate technology
[9:41] Vic Michalak: So there is a model that works by hand by adding some mechanism that makes it easier to successfully crank.....
[9:42] Jnix Fallon: never be before you time.. can be fatal .. lol
[9:42] Vic Michalak: It is elegant.... you can see it work on YouTube video....
[9:43] Vic Michalak: A version is at a museum in Silicon Valley (San Francisco bay area) and will be going to the Seattle area to a private collector....
[9:43] Vic Michalak: Wonder who that is? :)
[9:43] toBe Destiny is Offline
[9:43] Vic Michalak: 5. Back to the natural world, proteins that are created from DNA instructions (whoops, I gave part of what DNA does away) work by folding in complex 3D shapes.
[9:43] Rober1236 Jua: Actually it does not really work for very long or very well with a hand crank
[9:44] Jnix Fallon: Scientists .. Vic
[9:44] Rober1236 Jua: the poor guy was rather frustrated after so much work, but happy he did not have to do anythign with it
[9:44] DeNovo Broome is Online
[9:44] Vic Michalak: But the diagrams and idea works.....
[9:45] Vic Michalak: Check it out on YouTube... and I will be presenting more scholarly sources when we get to that session.....
[9:45] Vic Michalak: To reiterate on the next topic.... 5. Back to the natural world, proteins that are created from DNA instructions (whoops, I gave part of what DNA does away) work by folding in complex 3D shapes.
[9:45] Vic Michalak: Are you familiar with origami, the art of paper folding? Scientists have found that studying origami can be used to predict how a protein folds based on knowing its molecular composition of amino acids.
[9:46] Jnix Fallon: heard of it only
[9:46] MojoMaggie Sixpence: yes, somewhat.
[9:46] Kyx Magic: charming!
[9:46] Vic Michalak: Has anyone heard of the serious work with origami for predicting protein folding?
[9:46] MojoMaggie Sixpence: No.
[9:46] Kyx Magic: no
[9:46] Jnix Fallon: never
[9:46] Rober1236 Jua: No, platonic solids yes but not folded paper
[9:46] Vic Michalak: http://www.nature.com/nsmb/journal/v15/n2/covers/index.html for example....
[9:47] Kyx Magic: thx Vic, u a wizard!
[9:47] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Nice.
[9:47] Plex Olivier is Offline
[9:47] Vic Michalak: In any case, software programs can now pretty much predict how a protein will fold based on its sequence....
[9:48] Vic Michalak: Can anyone tell me why it is important how proteins fold?
[9:48] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Does any of this relate to prions and Mad C ow Disease?
[9:48] Jnix Fallon: ummm
[9:48] Vic Michalak: Mojo... I would not doubt that it does because of the answer to that question...
[9:48] MojoMaggie Sixpence: I understand some of that has to do with the misfolding of proteins.
[9:49] Vic Michalak: Mojo... yes! (in many cases of disease).....
[9:49] Vic Michalak: The way a protein folds is how it works with other proteins and molecules....
[9:49] Vic Michalak: The way it folds is how it is able to work in 3D with other objects.....
[9:50] Vic Michalak: So if the protein sequence (determined by DNA) is off a bit, it will fold in a way that does not work as well....
[9:50] Vic Michalak: ...or does not work at all...
[9:50] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Yes, that was my understanding.
[9:50] Vic Michalak: ...so you can have a condition we call "disease" when something does not work the way that is normal...
[9:51] Vic Michalak: 6. And finally, coming full circle back to DNA, we will examine not just how we can apply the way DNA encodes information to creating a better computer but actually how we can create a hybrid organic computer that uses DNA to perform the duties of computer.
[9:51] Fau Ferdinand is Online
[9:51] Vic Michalak: Is anyone familiar with DNA used in computers?
[9:51] Jnix Fallon: ok
[9:51] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Have heard of it.
[9:51] Pandora Wrigglesworth is Offline
[9:52] Jnix Fallon: ? no clue
[9:52] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Using living cells.
[9:52] Vic Michalak: DNA computers have been used to play chess games!
[9:52] Vic Michalak: Well, not living cells, but DNA....
[9:52] Josina Burgess is Offline
[9:52] Vic Michalak: DNA itself is not alive.....
[9:52] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Yes, I know, I believe I am thinking of something else.
[9:53] Sashika Szondi is Offline
[9:53] Spokesman Salomon: If DNA isn't alive what is?
[9:53] Vic Michalak: But DNA can store information and can give instructions to other things very quickly and mostly accurately...
[9:53] Penelope Strathearn is Offline
[9:53] Jnix Fallon: you mean a model of DNA is the computer .. Vic
[9:53] Vic Michalak: Spokesman.... DNA stores information but it is the whole system that is alive.....
[9:54] Vic Michalak: Jnix.... yes, using DNA to store and transmit information inside a computer....
[9:54] Spokesman Salomon: I'll not quibble about what constitutes life.
[9:54] Vic Michalak: Spokesman... actually that is a very interesting topic!
[9:54] MojoMaggie Sixpence: A biological computer using leech neurons, I think.
[9:54] Vic Michalak: For example, is a virus alive?
[9:54] Spokesman Salomon: It's a cliché of the unanswerable question.
[9:54] psyche Iwish is Offline
[9:55] Jnix Fallon: Life is a human pespective only I think
[9:55] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Not according to classic definitions. Not that the virus cares.
[9:55] Vic Michalak: There are definitions of "alive" and one of them is self-replication.... so a virus needs another organism to replciate so some will say that it is on the margin of what we call being alive.....
[9:56] Cindy Ecksol is Online
[9:56] Vic Michalak: Mojo... yes... not that the virus cares! :)
[9:56] Vic Michalak: ...especially about our definitions.... :)
[9:56] Vic Michalak: Again we come to the end of our hour.....
[9:56] Jnix Fallon: numbers multiply .. but not living
[9:57] Vic Michalak: I have presented 6 news topics on the same theme that I would like to discuss in future sessions....
[9:57] Vic Michalak: Do they sound worth investigating?
[9:57] Rober1236 Jua: Does anyone mind if I blog this?
[9:57] MojoMaggie Sixpence: I should say so.
[9:57] Vic Michalak: I do not mind....
[9:57] Jnix Fallon: awe .. what a souce of infomation this is .. ty Vic
[9:57] MojoMaggie Sixpence: Extremely interesting.
[9:58] Rober1236 Jua: and sorry about all the snow
[9:58] Vic Michalak: Thank you.... I find researching this to be very fun.... and I love this forum....
[9:58] Jnix Fallon: mind expanding I would say .. :-)
[9:58] Spokesman Salomon: Snow worry.
[9:58] Vic Michalak: haha... we cannot control the snow....
[9:58] Rober1236 Jua: I can
[9:58] MojoMaggie Sixpence: *smiles
[9:58] Vic Michalak: ....except in SL>...
[9:58] Kyx Magic: Wonderul stuff Vic, please more about DNA computers soon!
[9:58] MojoMaggie Sixpence: well, at least it is neither cold nor wet....
[9:59] Jnix Fallon: just stop seeding the clouds is all
[9:59] Doc O's Snow Emitter: Snow radius set to 1.000000 meters.
[9:59] MojoMaggie Sixpence: in SL
[9:59] Vic Michalak: Well, thank you for coming today... Please come back again... And thank you for some wonderful participation!
[9:59] Vic Michalak: The seminar is a success because you make it so! :)
[9:59] MojoMaggie Sixpence: T hank you for providing the opportunity.
[9:59] Rober1236 Jua: And is not the point of global warming that we do control the snow?
[10:00] MojoMaggie Sixpence: These seminars are obviously a labor of love.
[10:00] Vic Michalak: Robert... intersting thought....
[10:00] Kyx Magic: The snow is beautifully seasonal! Thaks foreveryting Vic, and have a lovely Xmas break! :)
Rober1236 Jua the Cyber Trekker of Second Life