Sunday, August 22, 2010

Open thread: ask me questions!

Dear all the CS people who I know glance at this blog: I would love to hear from you! (And, y'know, from anyone else who happens not to study CS.)

I've recently come up short on blog topics, but also had a hankering to explain basic biology items in a way that makes them exciting to people who "hate biology", or are at best indifferent to it.

What would you like to hear about? Is there some old question left over from your intro biology course, to which you've never heard a satisfactory answer? Want quick summaries of recent developments in synthetic biology, or the ways in which biology imitates EE/CS? How about Anthropomorphized Enzyme Comics? Or, perhaps, White Lies Your High School Bio Teacher Told You?

Reply now and you might even get the post before Monday morning! :D


  1. What did you think of the cellcraft game that I sent you, It looked fun but also helpful for understanding cell functions. but I have not finished playing it.

  2. Can you send me the link again? I'm afraid I lost that email.

  3. I'd be pretty interested in hearing about how adaptable organic tissues in animals are E.g. if some tissue or even an entire organ needs to be replaced with tissue from another part of the body, what the process for getting the tissue to adapt is. (My understanding is that this is the huge connection between bio and computer systems?)

  4. That's a damn good question. I could write several posts about getting tissues to adapt to new contexts/roles.

    But also... no, this is not the huge connection between bio and computer systems. There are a number of these. I'm mostly thinking of things like the analogy between protein interaction networks and electronic circuits, both of which have to be reliable, able to switch between different steady states, tolerant of noise and mutation, etc. (This is basically the core of systems bilogy, which I'm into at the moment because my summer job was in a systems biology department. Increased awareness and all.)