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Uncompromising Honor chatter

Join us in talking discussing all things Honor, including (but not limited to) tactics, favorite characters, and book discussions.
Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by Daryl   » Sat Jan 19, 2019 6:07 am

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There is the law of unintended consequences involved here as well. My high school graduation photos shows me already starting to go bald. Find "that gene" and fix it, and I might well discover that I revert to "normal male" dimensions elsewhere. I expect that by Honorverse times they will be getting it sorted.
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by tlb   » Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:21 am

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Relax wrote:So, all the "DNA splicing and "crack" geneticists" blathered about in science fiction... is woefully, pathetically short of reality. Especially all the crap written about "splicing" new information into existing DNA via the retro virus..... It is not possible. And why cells which DO get infected by retro virus's, DIE. All those 3d specialized protein Shapes which are now scrambled and cannot be built to push the DNA through in its odd 3D shape which now cannot be formed either.

Considering the news in 2010 of transgenic goats that created spider silk in their milk (icky milk not safe for kids to drink?) and just recently the news of modifying plants to improve photosynthesis, the future of genetic modification may not be as dire as this makes it sound. To be fair, there is still a lot to learn; just as scientists are learning about the possible value of "junk" DNA in yeast.
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by ldwechsler   » Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:17 pm

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tlb wrote:
Relax wrote:So, all the "DNA splicing and "crack" geneticists" blathered about in science fiction... is woefully, pathetically short of reality. Especially all the crap written about "splicing" new information into existing DNA via the retro virus..... It is not possible. And why cells which DO get infected by retro virus's, DIE. All those 3d specialized protein Shapes which are now scrambled and cannot be built to push the DNA through in its odd 3D shape which now cannot be formed either.

Considering the news in 2010 of transgenic goats that created spider silk in their milk (icky milk not safe for kids to drink?) and just recently the news of modifying plants to improve photosynthesis, the future of genetic modification may not be as dire as this makes it sound. To be fair, there is still a lot to learn; just as scientists are learning about the possible value of "junk" DNA in yeast.


The problem is that genetics is such a new science, with the whole notion of "genetic fixing" even just barely started. We have no idea what will happen in the future.

There may be huge changes...or not much at all. Who knows what history will bring? There are many people now who are very anti-tech. They may prevail.

There may be far more difficult obstacles than we can imagine.

What we now have are stories set far in the future. We know small bits about genetics but not nearly enough. Keep in mind that RFC is NOT a geneticist.
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by tlb   » Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:46 pm

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Relax wrote:So, all the "DNA splicing and "crack" geneticists" blathered about in science fiction... is woefully, pathetically short of reality. Especially all the crap written about "splicing" new information into existing DNA via the retro virus..... It is not possible. And why cells which DO get infected by retro virus's, DIE. All those 3d specialized protein Shapes which are now scrambled and cannot be built to push the DNA through in its odd 3D shape which now cannot be formed either.

tlb wrote:Considering the news in 2010 of transgenic goats that created spider silk in their milk (icky milk not safe for kids to drink?) and just recently the news of modifying plants to improve photosynthesis, the future of genetic modification may not be as dire as this makes it sound. To be fair, there is still a lot to learn; just as scientists are learning about the possible value of "junk" DNA in yeast.

ldwechsler wrote:The problem is that genetics is such a new science, with the whole notion of "genetic fixing" even just barely started. We have no idea what will happen in the future.

There may be huge changes...or not much at all. Who knows what history will bring? There are many people now who are very anti-tech. They may prevail.

There may be far more difficult obstacles than we can imagine.

What we now have are stories set far in the future. We know small bits about genetics but not nearly enough. Keep in mind that RFC is NOT a geneticist.

So what; this science fiction written by RFC, so he can choose how he thinks science might go.

Back when the Scrags, with their locked genetic characteristics, were first discussed there were people writing indignantly in this forum that genetics does not work that way and they knew because they had studied. Again, so what. I studied physics and do not believe in artificial gravity or compensators or contra-grav; but that was in the little bit of our universe that I had studied and need have nothing to with the Honorverse. So I suspended disbelief and enjoyed the stories being told. Whether the science fiction story is about a possible future of ours is only a miniscule part of whether is a good read; it is more important to have a clear and coherent vision.

** I may have been a bit cranky last night after staying up later than usual; but it does bug me when people argue that something cannot be done in a story, because our present state of knowledge does not allow for it. There are two equally good answers for that:
1. Our present state of knowledge is contingent and liable to be superseded at anytime.
2. This is fiction and the author is allowed to make choices on what to include or exclude. Someone can argue whether there is internal consistency, but cannot really expect the author to substitute the reader's "facts" for those in the story.
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by tlb   » Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:31 am

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Daryl wrote:There is the law of unintended consequences involved here as well. My high school graduation photos shows me already starting to go bald. Find "that gene" and fix it, and I might well discover that I revert to "normal male" dimensions elsewhere. I expect that by Honorverse times they will be getting it sorted.

There is science news that a technique for "locking" genes, that we have discussed in this forum, is now working in the laboratory. Although it does not currently work as well in mice as in insects, it still beats Mendelian probability. The technique is called "gene drive" and has a Wikipedia page and I have also included a link to a magazine article that is easier to understand.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_drive

https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/01 ... nd-mendel/
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by ldwechsler   » Sat Jan 26, 2019 8:19 am

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tlb wrote:
Daryl wrote:There is the law of unintended consequences involved here as well. My high school graduation photos shows me already starting to go bald. Find "that gene" and fix it, and I might well discover that I revert to "normal male" dimensions elsewhere. I expect that by Honorverse times they will be getting it sorted.

There is science news that a technique for "locking" genes, that we have discussed in this forum, is now working in the laboratory. Although it does not currently work as well in mice as in insects, it still beats Mendelian probability. The technique is called "gene drive" and has a Wikipedia page and I have also included a link to a magazine article that is easier to understand.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_drive

https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/01 ... nd-mendel/


Note that the guy in China who did some human gene splicing for twins that have now been born (and who was arrested for that) also had managed to do work with chimps who were now all schizophrenic. These things will take time. Of course, two millennia will have passed before Honor takes up the gauntlet.
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by MrZero   » Tue Jan 29, 2019 3:33 am

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I had intended to make a thread to gather single posts, but I think I'll just continue to wander around proverbially eating popcorn while everyone continues to make good points.

So I think it's clear that treecat cloning, as well as treecat-earthcat breeding, is possible. The first one's about cell sample splitting, the second's about cell splicing. It's both about cell contents, and bringing a viable (or close enough!) embryo into being. We don't have the tools at a civilian level now, but sci-fi's never cared about such puny limits as lack of will. So what if it's a little off, so what if it's a little strange in the head, so what if it's demanding to play Resident Evil? Genetic slaves mean never having to worry about the body count in the sealed lab the next planet over. "Cross-breeding? If at first you don't succeed, do it more often!"
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by Brigade XO   » Mon Feb 11, 2019 9:50 pm

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Both the people doing studies in manipulating genetics (not the old fashioned way of breading sucessive generations to try and have the genes express a desired trait) find that this typicaly ends in the death of what is involved in the experiment- and that isn't much beyond getting the addition "spliced" in.

All that wonderful genetic modification like the results (and disasters) of Jurassic Park, etc, is fiction and Hollywierd at this point.

Enter the Alignment and Mesa with it's Manpower and related companies. It's fiction, we are nowhere close but it has made for compelling FICTION.

The people who have been studying the current and historic/ancestral genenetis keep finding all sorts of things that we didn't know. All those theories about Race and humans.....ah, better keep an open mind because presnt humans are apparently all the same species. There are also a bunch of unanswerd questions about everything in genetics including just what makes the cells that end up dividing into gametes do it with the apparently (to the best anybody can discover so far) random -but even within pairs of chromosomes within a cell- effect. If they broke and reformed with each side of the helix a different length there is going to be a "problems"- like the thing is going to not make it.

All sorts of positions have been mapped for genes ( and the size of a "gene" string on a chromosome for any given result is not equal) and, the research currently showes that much of what we see in the finished producte (for humans and other species) that survive to the point of birth is highly dependent on the interaction of multiple genes in concert or sequence (it varies) with others. You get one thing wrong and....the cell or the embryo dies or ----if your not perfect---you may get a live offspring but it's survival is problematic.
Iffy.
What is probably the greatest fear of playing around with genetics? Actualy creating something "better" than humans (or any other species) such that it wipes us out as it multiplies and speads. That would include some sort of plague or infection that kills people or the plants or animals we depend on for food or other little stuff----like photosynthesis in plants which would make our current biological system of breathing useless as free O2 would get used up and all sorts of life in the planet would die. The planet wouldn't care.

Nobody would make a Small Pox super bug, or Antrhrax variant, or "Super Flue" on purpose......even by mistake.....where the hell did Marburg Viris come from? A hemorragiic fever that popped up in Germany? Really?

I'll go back to reading fiction....:)
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by Daryl   » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:25 am

Daryl
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Location: Queensland Australia

If you are going to break the rules do it with a flourish before the pitchforks and torches turn up.
In Australia we have the deadliest snake, the inland taipan or fierce snake. We also have the biggest land carnivore in saltwater crocodiles. Both reptiles, so how does a TRex sized (by weight) predator who can secreted litres of nerve poison sound?
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Re: Uncompromising Honor chatter
Post by Cartref   » Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:33 pm

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aairfccha wrote:
tlb wrote:If the biologists at Mesa could have had longer to study the treecat, then they would have tried to incorporate their results in a human genome.

Somewhere is mentioned that Manpower obtained samples and even living treecats a long time ago (Stephanie Harrington time?), but wasn't really doing much with the information any more as they never managed to achieve much with it.


I can't remember which book it was, but it was stated that Manpower had managed to get a few Treecats over the years, but they all died rather quickly of natural causes.
Manpower had also wished to incorporate the telepathy and empathy abilities into their breeding lines.
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