MachineMachine /stream - tagged with biology en-us LifePress <![CDATA[Why Are Octopuses So Smart? - The Atlantic]]>

A small shark spots its prey—a meaty, seemingly defenseless octopus. The shark ambushes, and then, in one of the most astonishing sequences in the series Blue Planet II, the octopus escapes. First, it shoves one of its arms into the predator’s vulnerable gills.

Thu, 08 Oct 2020 23:13:01 -0700
<![CDATA[Scientists rename human genes to stop Microsoft Excel from misreading them as dates - The Verge]]>

There are tens of thousands of genes in the human genome: minuscule twists of DNA and RNA that combine to express all of the traits and characteristics that make each of us unique. Each gene is given a name and alphanumeric code, known as a symbol, which scientists use to coordinate research.

Tue, 18 Aug 2020 06:13:16 -0700
<![CDATA[Is DNA Hardware or Software? - Grow by Ginkgo]]>

In mid-January, a group of computer scientists and biologists from the University of Vermont, Tufts, and Harvard announced that they had created an entirely new life form — xenobots, the world’s first living robots.

Tue, 30 Jun 2020 10:13:20 -0700
<![CDATA[Natural’s Not in It — Real Life]]>

If the 20th century promised better living through chemistry, the 21st century has promised better living through digital technology.

Sat, 23 Mar 2019 20:44:08 -0700
<![CDATA[Speculative biology: understanding the past and predicting our future | Science | The Guardian]]>

In 1981, a remarkable book was published: After Man: A Zoology of the Future, by Dougal Dixon.

Mon, 11 Jun 2018 05:02:35 -0700
<![CDATA[Controversial New Theory Suggests Life Wasn't a Fluke of Biology—It Was Physics | WIRED]]>

The biophysicist Jeremy England made waves in 2013 with a new theory that cast the origin of life as an inevitable outcome of thermodynamics.

Sun, 06 Aug 2017 11:35:32 -0700
<![CDATA[This Woman Just Figured Out How to Control Sperm with Her Brain - Broadly]]>

For transdisciplinary artist Ani Liu, working in science and technology has provided a way for her to explore the intersection between research, culture, and implications of emerging technologies.

Thu, 08 Jun 2017 08:01:52 -0700
<![CDATA[Biotyranny and its Resistance: Who Owns Your Body? - Motherboard]]>

In early 2015, a Fedex package arrived at the studio of artist/scientist Heather Dewey-Hagborg. It contained only a sample of hair and cheek swabs.

Sat, 11 Mar 2017 19:21:05 -0800
<![CDATA[Towards a statistical mechanics of consciousness: maximization of number of connections is associated with conscious awareness]]>

Authors: R. Guevara Erra, D. M. Mateos, R. Wennberg, J.L. Perez Velazquez Abstract: It has been said that complexity lies between order and disorder. In the case of brain activity, and physiology in general, complexity issues are being considered with increased emphasis.

Sun, 23 Oct 2016 04:56:19 -0700

Fig. 1: Illustration for Lautréamont’s Les Chants de Maldoror (1868-1869). Marco Saccaperni, 2011. I am filthy [Je suis sale]—writes Lautréamont—I am riddled with lice. Hogs, when they look at me, vomit.

Wed, 28 Sep 2016 01:38:17 -0700
<![CDATA[Living factories of the future : Nature : Nature Publishing Group]]> ]]> Sun, 17 Apr 2016 06:03:05 -0700 <![CDATA[The Emperor’s Love of Slime Mold | Popular Science]]>

Slime mold—a living network of tendrils found on rotting wood and other plant debris—is easily one of the strangest things alive. Neither plant, nor fungus, it’s a collection of individual cells glomming together in a web-like mush that stalks the forest floor.

Sun, 17 Apr 2016 06:02:59 -0700
<![CDATA[‘Minimal’ cell raises stakes in race to harness synthetic life : Nature News & Comment]]>

Genomics entrepreneur Craig Venter has created a synthetic cell that contains the smallest genome of any known, independent organism.

Tue, 29 Mar 2016 14:35:40 -0700
<![CDATA[The Hunt for the Algorithms That Drive Life on Earth | WIRED]]>

To the computer scientist Leslie Valiant, “machine learning” is redundant. In his opinion, a toddler fumbling with a rubber ball and a deep-learning network classifying cat photos are both learning; calling the latter system a “machine” is a distinction without a difference.

Sun, 06 Mar 2016 07:20:10 -0800
<![CDATA[Why our imagination for alien life is so impoverishe...]]>

It astonishes me how much we seem to know about aliens. They build technology-driven civilisations and pilot spaceships across the galaxy. They create energy-harvesting structures around their stars. They beam interstellar greetings to us.

Thu, 18 Feb 2016 09:35:16 -0800
<![CDATA[At Synthorx, Synthetic Biologists Put Artificial Life Forms to Work | MIT Technology Review]]>

In the May 15, 2014, edition of the journal Nature, Floyd Romesberg’s chemistry lab at San Diego’s Scripps Research Institute published a paper titled “A Semi-Synthetic Organism with an Expanded Genetic Alphabet.

Sat, 21 Nov 2015 06:16:44 -0800
<![CDATA[Welcome to the age of synthetic biology – it’s all about yeast]]>

Evolution’s retirement plan has been 3.6 billion years in the making. With the appearance of the modern human being, we now have an organism that can take over from natural processes and engineer biology in entirely new ways. Welcome to the age of synthetic biology.

Tue, 27 Oct 2015 17:12:00 -0700
<![CDATA[There’s a Mystery Machine That Sculpts the Human Genome - The Atlantic]]>

Genomes are so regularly represented as strings of letters—As, Gs, Cs, and Ts—that it’s easy to forget that they aren’t just abstract collections of data. They exist in three dimensions. They are made of molecules. They are physical objects that take up space—a lot of space.

Sat, 24 Oct 2015 03:35:28 -0700
<![CDATA[How a Hacked Virus Is Bringing Us Closer to Artificial Photosynthesis | Motherboard]]>

The question persists: Is a virus alive? Or is it simply a clever organic machine? It lacks most all of things we associate with "life": the ability to reproduce (outside of a host cell), biological componentry, a metabolism. All it is is DNA, a single strand wrapped in a protein membrane.

Sun, 18 Oct 2015 08:10:34 -0700
<![CDATA[Julian Savulescu: The Philosopher Who Says We Should Play God]]>

Australian bioethicist Julian Savulescu has a knack for provocation. Take human cloning. He says most of us would readily accept it if it benefited us.

Wed, 09 Sep 2015 11:27:55 -0700