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Author Topic: Why can't scientists produce artificial life?  (Read 1883 times)

Bob Archibald

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Why can't scientists produce artificial life?
« on: 14/01/2010 21:30:02 »
Bob Archibald  asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Hi Chris and Fellow Scientists

With huge advances in just about every field of science and engineering, there are a couple of things that have not changed for 40 years.  Would you care to comment.

1. Except for the Concorde which was incredibly inefficient, there has been no order of magnitude improvement in the fuel efficiency of airliners and therefore airline air speed has not increased in more than 40 years.  And rocket propulsion speed is about the same as it was 40 years ago as well.

2. Cell phones have been around since the early 80's and hundreds of applications and features have been added, but transmission quality has been stagnant.  Even in some highly populated areas if you don't have transmitting towers every mile or so clarity can be awful and dropped calls can be a frequent problem.  I can take a 5 meg photo and browse the internet with my cell phone but I frequently can't get a call to go through.

3.  Cellular biology, microbiology and genetics have been revolutionized since the discovery of DNA structure some 50 years ago.  Our knowledge has increased 1000 fold.  But paradoxically, scientists have failed to create a living micro-organism from scratch chemicals in the lab.

I love your show and listen via podcast.

Bob Archibald
Berkeley California

What do you think?
« Last Edit: 14/01/2010 21:30:02 by _system »


 

Offline RD

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Why can't scientists produce artificial life?
« Reply #1 on: 14/01/2010 22:00:25 »
Quote
I am creating artificial life, declares US gene pioneer

     The Guardian, Saturday 6 October 2007

Craig Venter, the controversial DNA researcher involved in the race to decipher the human genetic code, has built a synthetic chromosome out of laboratory chemicals and is poised to announce the creation of the first new artificial life form on Earth.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2007/oct/06/genetics.climatechange

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synthetic_biology

Synthesising life from scratch, (although it only ranks #3 on your list), would be quite a feat:
 abiogenisis did take millions of years first time around.
« Last Edit: 14/01/2010 22:10:08 by RD »
 

Offline echochartruse

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Why can't scientists produce artificial life?
« Reply #2 on: 15/04/2010 07:40:09 »
I read somewhere, Craig Venter cloned existing DNA for his experiement

Quote from: http://www.dailytech.com/Scientist+Craig+Venter+Has+Created+Artificial+Life/article16619.htm
Venter's team used methylating enzymes from M. mycoides to protect the clone DNA harvested from the yeast.
 

Offline echochartruse

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Why can't scientists produce artificial life?
« Reply #3 on: 15/04/2010 07:44:22 »
I would say, ...we don't have the intelligence!
 

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Why can't scientists produce artificial life?
« Reply #3 on: 15/04/2010 07:44:22 »

 

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