Brief commentary on, the new social network “that aspires beyond chat and ads”

I’ve been meaning to comment on, a new for-fee social networking service. To me, it seems that is trying to build an alternative social web – one where the users are not the product and the service isn’t built for advertisers to mine. Is this a Shadow Web? Is this the first step […]

Finally got around to reading Sterling’s “An Essay on the New Aesthetic”

“That is my thesis; that’s why I think this matters. When I left the room at the SXSW “New Aesthetic” panel, this is what concerned me most. I left with the conviction that something profound had been touched. Touched, although not yet grasped. I’d suggest getting right after it.” I missed the session at SXSW […]

Microbiome sequencing offers hope for diagnostics : Nature News & Comment

“Jonathan Eisen [@phylogenomics], a microbiologist at University of California, Davis, is worried that microbiome research will eventually encounter the same backlash. “Without a doubt we are running into some of the same problems as the Human Genome Project,” he says. “There are many people who have oversold the human microbiome as the cause or cure […]

Crowd-Sourcing Drug Discovery

“The first challenge that OSDD’s cyber-community assigned itself was to glean more information from the M. tuberculosis genome. It was sequenced in 1998, but researchers had clues to the functions of only a quarter of its 4000 genes. In December 2009, OSDD set out to reannotate all possible genes. Some 500 volunteers got the job […]

The Visionary

“Seeking to spur drug development, Stephen Friend has launched a daring series of initiatives to make biomedical research more open and effective.” Interesting fellow. He’s a mover and shaker in the bioinformatics “data must be free” crowd. It’s a very good article. Read it. Read this article…

China’s Sequencing Powerhouse Comes of Age

“With new sequencing centers in Europe and the United States, BGI hopes its growing clout will help deliver the benefits promised by genomics—and revenue to pay off a mounting debt.” Genomics at a scale only China could do. Oh, my. Read this article…

Fortify your poop – Transfaunation

As you know, I’m always looking for practical uses of microbes. One that I stumbled upon a long while back was “transfaunation”, or, seeding one person’s gut with microbes from another’s. Yes, transfering poop microbes from one to another. Be an adult. Don’t get grossed out. I’ve read some great papers on the process how […]

Research at Janelia: Life on the farm : Nature News & Comment

“But what happens next? Can Janelia Farm do ‘great science’ during the next 5 to 10 years? Will it pass Rubin’s deletion test? Can it rewrite the introductory biology texts (Cech’s favourite definition of great science), or foster “a couple of programmes that create a whole new direction” (Tjian’s favourite)? That is the great unanswerable […]

Teach me: Does Hadoop signal the end of the database?

I am still a novice when it comes to the technical underpinnings of databases and Hadoop. So, I thought it might be useful if I just asked if my thought on the future of databases is correct. Basically, “Does Hadoop signal the end of the database as we know it?’ Here’s where this question comes […]

Outbreak Detectives Embrace the Genome Era: Science

“Genomic epidemiologists say, it’s time to use the technique to track microbial movements on a global scale. By routinely sequencing bacterial samples—perhaps up to a billion a year—scientists could pinpoint the sources of new outbreaks faster, determine whether a bug is resistant to antibiotics, and investigate how public policies or the use of certain drugs […]