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  #1  
Old 04-01-13, 08:23 AM
SB_UK SB_UK is offline
 
 

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Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Quote:
Originally Posted by TygerSan View Post
We have the ability to crunch huge amounts of information/data at a time now. The trick is being able to translate that data into something that is meaningful from a scientific and clinical perspective.
We can crunch big data. Translation is very definitely the trick.

But just because we can crunch big data doesn't mean that we'll be able to :-) turn tricks.

What's the question we're actually asking ?

If it's - how do we eliminate human suffering, then we don't need any of that data.

If it's a more focussed question eg how deranged are genomes in glioma to one another ... ... then we can.

But - why'd you ever care about things like heterogeneity in cancers if you can stop them occurring in the first place ?
It just feels like an experiment you perform because you can - as opposed to an experiment which is useful.
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Originally Posted by Stabile
When all you have is a hammer, everything's a nail.
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  #2  
Old 04-01-13, 01:25 PM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abi View Post
Unfortunately human beings were not produced by engineers in a factory with quality control.

Many of us come out of the factory "broken" in some way or the other (ailments of genetic origin and predisposition towards same.)

Therefore we still need mechanics, regardless of how smooth the road is, because many of us will still... dare I say... "break down"

Oh and if Doctors and Psychologists are Mechanics the the Biochemists you so disdain are potential future Engineers, too... but I'm not going there as I'll likely get pulverised by people for advocating eugenics or something...
We're not broken.

Nature can't afford to make mistakes.

Only humans make mistakes.

Really big ones too.

And the results of those mistakes are broken people.

Honestly.

Inequality is entirely a construct of man.
And man breaks (the rich and the poor) under a system of inequality.

We're just not built to be anti-social (maintain hierarchy).
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  #3  
Old 04-01-13, 01:36 PM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

Evolution is imperfect, SB.

The human being is an extremely fragile and flawed entity.
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Old 04-01-13, 01:38 PM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

Quote:
Nature can't afford to make mistakes.

Only humans make mistakes.
The question that always does my head in whilst thinking about the above statements is:

If nature doesn't make mistakes, and humans are a product of nature, then doesn't it logically follow that humans don't make mistakes?

Are we really just deluding ourselves into thinking that we can fight upstream against ancient forces that are so much larger than even our species as a whole? Isn't it just sheer arrogance to think that we can, as one species among many, singlehandedly swim against the tide and turn it?
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Old 04-02-13, 10:46 AM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

I haven't read the story yet, we can only hope that research will be guided by humanitarian/social needs, and possibly progress towards an actual physiological understanding and objective diagnostics that can help redefine mental 'disorders'.

Although humanitarian/social vs profit motives tend to not be aligned particularly well, infact by definition they tend to be directly opposed, so I guess we will have to just wait and see...

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Old 04-03-13, 05:47 AM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

From Tygersan's OP article

http://www.npr.org/2013/03/31/175858...he-human-brain
Quote:
Much like the Human Genome Project a decade ago, scientists are hoping brain mapping will lead to new scientific advances and breakthroughs, and that perhaps it will even unlock the secrets of conditions such as Alzheimer's, schizophrenia and Parkinson's disease.
The entire logic of the thrust is 'hoping'.
Science doesn't do hope.
Where - we've already unlocked the secret of those various listed disease:
Quote:
Originally Posted by internet
'They apparently do not suffer from heart disease, Parkinson's or Alzheimer's, and the only cancer ... ...'
So - the rationale as presented in the article is in the 'hope' that we'll find some information on diseases which we already know how to prevent.

Surely it's clear how deeply illogical that rationale is.
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Old 04-03-13, 06:07 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Just to try and get my head wrapped around the discussion of relevancy here

In my mind if you feel that these conditions can already be alleviated by changes in social structure then you feel the collecting of a bunch of scientific data to be completely irrelevant or are you saying the information gathering itself is relevant but the way it is applied diminishes it's value?


This is why I split off the thread because there is a difference between collecting data and what that data is used for and it is hard to discern which part of it you see a illogical but it seemed to be an interesting topic for this section none the less.
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Old 04-03-13, 06:13 AM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

Quote:
Originally Posted by SB_UK View Post
From Tygersan's OP article

http://www.npr.org/2013/03/31/175858...he-human-brain
The entire logic of the thrust is 'hoping'.
Science doesn't do hope.
Where - we've already unlocked the secret of those various listed disease:
So - the rationale as presented in the article is in the 'hope' that we'll find some information on diseases which we already know how to prevent.

Surely it's clear how deeply illogical that rationale is.
Science does do hope. All research is based on hope in some way. Scientists know that neither they nor their tools are infallible. How often does science disprove previous findings? Scientific knowledge is constantly in flux, in the hope that with time, we will have more accurate and more reliable knowledge. That's the thing I love about science. It never claims to be perfect. It constantly tries to improve. There is always room to learn and research more.

I know you think that a lifestyle as on Mount Athos would solve all our problems but I don't think, it would. I for one wouldn't want to live like that (and would therefore create chaos and misery if you put me in an environment like that).

Besides, even if knowledge, collecting data, huge amounts of data and analysing them isn't of any use, don't you still want to know? Don't you still want to learn more about the human body, about us, the world, the universe, everything, even if it's of no known or tangible use?
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  #9  
Old 04-03-13, 09:07 AM
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Re: Mapping the Human Brain

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuzzy12 View Post
I know you think that a lifestyle as on Mount Athos would solve ...
But this is the fundamental point.
I don't think it would solve all of the problems we have.

It's proven.

As simple as that.

Not too sure how to make the point that a random collection of people taken from around the world are plonked on an island and when they live a certain way, they don't get the diseases which the West is currently plagued by.

It's just not rocket science.

It's the entire basis of epidemiology to define populations with and without disease and to extrapolate.

There is no controversy here.

The sole problem is that you cannot make money off prevention - and so all of the very rich and powerful organizations tasked with medical issues - aren't interested.

It really is tragic - and is one of the best examples of how self-interest prevents rational behaviour.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:14 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

There are always going to be trade offs, but the evidence seems pretty solid, why find ways to describe a car crash when you can prevent it happening, the only issue is motive, a primarily selfish motive will eventually lead unintentionally and quite ironically to the end of the human race.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:24 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Quote:
Originally Posted by meadd823 View Post
Just to try and get my head wrapped around the discussion of relevancy here

In my mind if you feel that these conditions can already be alleviated by changes in social structure then you feel the collecting of a bunch of scientific data to be completely irrelevant or are you saying the information gathering itself is relevant but the way it is applied diminishes it's value?


This is why I split off the thread because there is a difference between collecting data and what that data is used for and it is hard to discern which part of it you see a illogical but it seemed to be an interesting topic for this section none the less.
The entire rationale for these types of studies is to help us 'cure' diseases maybe ??? which we can prevent - and which we most likely won't be able to cure once they've occurred.

'Cure' is based on the fantasy that 'cure' is possible.

However prevention is possible - and prevention has been demonstrated (unlike cure) to be possible.

It's the only scientific (rational) course to take.

The problem with the big data generators - is that they're technicians (using the technical method) and not using the scientific method.

The sweetest science is elegant.

'omics big data generation in the hope that it'll be useful is as about as elegant as road-kill hallibut.

Quote:
information gathering itself is relevant but the way it is applied diminishes it's value?
The 1 study I'm using (Mount Athos epidemiology) required information gathering - required a 'statistical' approach to show that levels of disease were absent - as opposed to a couple of miles up the road - where disease rates were as high as elsewhere in the Western world.

So - information gathering/application is OK ... ... what we have in this current world is willy nilly info gathering/storage in a database - in order to show a funding body that something definite has been done ... ... in order to secure further funding.

It's all about (scienvce currently) doing something that can be published.
About doing something that's going to secure a huge publication (which is easy by throwing money at a problem).
About securing future funding.

But not about doing something worthwhile.

Genuinely - 1 epidemiological study on Mount Athos invalidates 50 - 100 years of hundreds of thousands of publications in biomedical research
- if that research was geared towards understanding disease.

Because, for the very, very, very vast majority of cases - disease can be prevented.

Preventing the need for understanding mechanism/cure/treeatment.

-*-

Now - I don't know if there will be zero need for healthcare in a sensible societal infrastructure - but I do know where there's some data on which problems arise (the records of Mount Athos)
- and think the scientific appropach to working out what the healthcare system a sensible societal infrastructure 'd need ... ... 'd come from asking to see the records of medical care required on the Mount over the last 1000 years.

I'm genuinely not expecting to see much at all health care required.

And that's particularly particularly impressive - because I don't think that the monks arrive on the Mount until they're adults ... ... and so (and I can't generate data on this) - but I'm expecting that if people were to live the life on Athos from birth
- that there'd be a hugely significant reduction in disease again - over the close to absence of disease seen on Athos ... ... anyway.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:26 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyler Durden View Post
There are always going to be trade offs, but the evidence seems pretty solid, why find ways to describe a car crash when you can prevent it happening, the only issue is motive, a primarily selfish motive will eventually lead unintentionally and quite ironically to the end of the human race.
I don't understand why anybody's trying to counter this argument.
It's so obviously correct - that there's no way to argue against it - without cheating.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:31 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Quote:
Originally Posted by meadd823 View Post
Just to try and get my head wrapped around the discussion of relevancy here

In my mind if you feel that these conditions can already be alleviated by changes in social structure then you feel the collecting of a bunch of scientific data to be completely irrelevant or are you saying the information gathering itself is relevant but the way it is applied diminishes it's value?


This is why I split off the thread because there is a difference between collecting data and what that data is used for and it is hard to discern which part of it you see a illogical but it seemed to be an interesting topic for this section none the less.

Apologies for making you split-off this series of posts.

The problem is that it's the same conclusion if we're looking at:

large level gene expression data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level epigenetics data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level sequence data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level proteomics data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level neural connection data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level metabolomics data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level biomics data collection -> stamp-collecting
large level protein structural collection -> stamp-collecting
large level transgenics construction -> stamp-collecting
large level copy number variant assessment -> stamp-collecting

Human beings have gone completely mad.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:34 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

Saying that there is no reason we can't do both, damage has already been done, the key is motive.
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Old 04-03-13, 09:44 AM
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Re: Collecting Scientific Data - ? Usefullness

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Originally Posted by Tyler Durden View Post
Saying that there is no reason we can't do both, damage has already been done, the key is motive.
Yes - you're right.

Priority 1 - prevent new occurrences of disease by environmental change.
Priority 2 - remove selfish (money) reward from health-care (consequence of Priority 1)
Priority 3 - 'cure' (will fail in most cases) those who're irreversibly damaged.

I am hoping that forcing Priority 1 will result in the body leveraging its own natural defences against disease to help with Priority 3.

So - for instance - a Priority 1 world would result in less stress - less need for stress-relief (eg eating) solving Priority 3 diabetes / obesity (as an example).

Just passed a poster on the way to an orthotics department in a hospital
- basically stated that diabesity is the leading cause of need for orthotics.

Not a connection I'd make immediately - a definite link into how medicine need be a Systems level and not an isolated Specialty type subject.

However - Priority 3 rotten teeth won't be affected by a Priority 1 world.
Maybe rate of further decay slowed ?

-*-

The thing about a genuine hope for moving towards the eradication of healthcare - is that this means the increased prevalence of health.
The most principled of health-care workers should wish for a world in which their services are no longer required.

For that 'd mean happy healthy people from birth to death.
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