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[NYTimes] Scientists Hold Secret Meeting to Consider Creating a Synthetic Human Genome - Page 12

post #111 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blameless View Post

I see huge problems with the society represented in Gattaca.

Genetic engineering to correct incontrovertible flaws, even to augment ability, is all well and good, but judging people on what their genetic potential should be, rather than the merits they are actually able to demonstrate, is not.

The world presented in the film is one where genetic prejudice has been codified into a caste system. It doesn't matter who you are or what you can do, it only matters what's written into your genes. It's one thing to expect that someone with generally more advantageous genetics to have an edge, it's something else entirely to bar those with apparently less advantage from even being in the running.
The protagonist in Gattaca was never presented as 'better' (indeed, he had at least two crippling flaws that threatened to expose or kill him during the course of the story), but he was good enough to do the job...a job his true genetic profile would likely have barred him from, even if he hadn't had a heart condition and poor eyesight.

Come now Blameless, we both know you're smarter than to take the movie literally. If the movie had been an even remotely realistic depiction of a scenario where humans were all genetically perfect, it would have been an incredibly dull movie and would never have been written. The evil had to be manufactured for the sake of cinematography.

In an actual Gattaca-like scenario, Vincent never would have magically out-swam his genetically perfect brother. He never would have been the right candidate for the job even ignoring the prejudice, he certainly never would have been able to afford the black market genetics spoofing, etc. The director would never have been murdered with a plastic keyboard. They never would have randomly picked him for extreme extra scrutiny when trying to locate the owner of the mystery eyelash despite already having countless genetic test results on him. They WOULD have found the actual murderer instead long before even caring about some nonsense stray eyelash that could have been carried in on someone's clothes. None of it would have even really mattered, as the whole premise is explained as being illegal to begin with.

The point being, you and I know full well that in this world, with movie magic removed, it absolutely would have been a case of expecting that someone with generally more advantageous genetics twould have an edge, rather than to barring those with apparently less advantage from even being in the running. There is not profit to be made from that, aside from the profits to the filmmakers.

As for whether or not his is depicted as "better", I'd make the claim that someone with literally superhuman cleanliness to the point that he doesn't shed skin cells or have any saliva. Can outswim a perfect human "just because", shows no added fatigue during strenuous physical training designed for perfect humans, despite apparently being a born cripple. Being a genius in a very specialized field requiring extensive training, despite receiving none, etc, as being "better".


Now, if you're just opposed to the idea of more qualified individuals being selected for jobs, then I suppose a Gattaca-like but realistic future would be undesirable. That of course would also mean you want uneducated criminals as schoolteachers and such other nonsense. I know you don't actually want that.
Edited by Zero4549 - 5/31/16 at 4:10am
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post #112 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by kylzer View Post

Stone cause redheads are nice imo

Watson is nice looking don't get me wrong but her views don't really agree with mine and that makes her "unattractive" also she was hotter at like 16/17 than now.
The ones that go supernova early tend to get uglier faster for some reason. Though I will agree as I get older I find personality far more attractive than looks and Stone is stunning as a blonde thumb.gif
    
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post #113 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

If the movie had been an even remotely realistic depiction of a scenario where humans were all genetically perfect, it would have been an incredibly dull movie and would never have been written.

There is no genetically "perfect".
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

In an actual Gattaca-like scenario, Vincent never would have magically out-swam his genetically perfect brother.

If he was more determined to succeed and/or less apprehensive of the consequences of failure, not to mention much more conditioned, sure he could have.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

The point being, you and I know full well that in this world, with movie magic removed, it absolutely would have been a case of expecting that someone with generally more advantageous genetics twould have an edge, rather than to barring those with apparently less advantage from even being in the running.

There are countless real-world precedents, both past and present, for the same sort of thing. Merit is regularly trumped by privilege and prejudice. There is really very little in the way of equality of opportunity.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

someone with literally superhuman cleanliness to the point that he doesn't shed skin cells or have any saliva.

Nothing so dramatic is implied. Indeed, the whole pretense of his hygiene ritual is to minimize the traces of his own DNA that he leaves behind, so that anyone looking is more likely to find the material he's been planting. This is plausible, as DNA is everywhere; their detection methods have to be relying on concentrations and cull outliers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

shows no added fatigue during strenuous physical training designed for perfect humans

It's clearly shown that he's barely able to feign keeping it together during that training.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

Being a genius in a very specialized field requiring extensive training, despite receiving none

There is nothing implausible about Jerome being able to learn on his own. The backdrop of much of the film is about the training he's receiving before he goes into space for the first time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

Now, if you're just opposed to the idea of more qualified individuals being selected for jobs, then I suppose a Gattaca-like but realistic future would be undesirable.

I'm opposed to any definition of "more qualified" that weighs demonstrable ability less highly than having rubber-stamped credentials, or which values vague potential more than actuality.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zero4549 View Post

That of course would also mean you want uneducated criminals as schoolteachers and such other nonsense. I know you don't actually want that.

That's a strawman. Jerome not being qualified, or using criminal means to hide that lack of qualification, is entirely separate from the injustice of the qualification process.
Edited by Blameless - 5/31/16 at 9:39pm
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post #114 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by BradleyW View Post

I could write a book on why we should not clone or create humans. The list is endless. Those in favour are simply ignorant and don't understand the wealth of implications.


And their are a lot of books out their with wrong/bad information.
    
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post #115 of 122
There is a genetically perfect. However, their would be a percentage of imperfects.

The giver?

The problem is, even with genetic manipulation mutation happens. So you can have 99.9% but every once in a while life happens.

But seriously if you genetically removed all defects. It would take a certain time for those defects to re appear. Also, those defects could be managed.

Honestly, we cannot achieve that and we shouldn't. Humanity is what we are, and that's why we are what we are. Don't change that, it won't end well.
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post #116 of 122
Since we removed evolution by basically preventing physically or mentally defective individuals to die, as it happens in nature to all other species, eugenics seems to be the only solution. I am looking forward to seeing more advanced, longer-living, happier humans in a couple of generation. Shame that it won't affect us retroactively.
post #117 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by mushroomboy View Post

There is a genetically perfect.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mushroomboy View Post

But seriously if you genetically removed all defects.

The difference between a defect and an adaptation is often one of circumstance. There is almost certainly no combination of adaptations/genetics that would be advantageous in all scenarios. For example, you can alter the genes responsible for sickle cell anemia, but if you do this to a population where malaria is endemic and poorly controlled, you'll kill many more people than you save. You also have things like skin pigmentation. Too much melanin in high latitudes and you start to suffer from lack of vitamin D production. Too little in lower latitudes means you are at much higher risk for skin cancer and other effects of UV damage.

Quite a few other apparent defect are still rather poorly understood. Humans are one of a very few species of mammals that cannot produce their own vitamin C, but whether this ability was lost simply due to it not being selected for in an environment with abundant food sources of vitamin C, or whether there was a specific fitness advantage to selecting against it in such an environment is currently unknown. Likewise, most mammals are di or trichromats. Mammals were originally descended from tetrachromats, but the ancestors of most surviving species likely lost this ability when the extra color channels proved useless for the primarily nocturnal niches they filled. Later some species reevolved a third color channel, but true tetrachromacy is quite rare in mammals and we see fewer colors in a more narrow spectrum than what we evolved from. We could probably reintroduce tetrachromacy, but it's not impossible there are trade-offs that could be disadvantageous in some situations.

Even a few seemingly clear-cut advantages can be defects in some situations. Muscular hypertrophy is a good example of this...if nutrition is abundant, being easily able to maintain a large muscle mass has very few downsides, but when food is scarce, the metabolic costs of extra muscle can easily out weight the advantages it provides.

Sure there are some clear cut defects that always hamper survival without ever providing any discernible advantage and vice versa, but the idea of genetic perfection, unless tailored for a very specific purpose, is a farce. This is precisely why high genetic diversity is essentially always a survival advantage at the species level; perfect for one scenario can mean extinction in another.
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post #118 of 122
"The cycle of life and death continues. We will live, they will die" - Nasus
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post #119 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blameless View Post


The difference between a defect and an adaptation is often one of circumstance. There is almost certainly no combination of adaptations/genetics that would be advantageous in all scenarios. For example, you can alter the genes responsible for sickle cell anemia, but if you do this to a population where malaria is endemic and poorly controlled, you'll kill many more people than you save. You also have things like skin pigmentation. Too much melanin in high latitudes and you start to suffer from lack of vitamin D production. Too little in lower latitudes means you are at much higher risk for skin cancer and other effects of UV damage.

Quite a few other apparent defect are still rather poorly understood. Humans are one of a very few species of mammals that cannot produce their own vitamin C, but whether this ability was lost simply due to it not being selected for in an environment with abundant food sources of vitamin C, or whether there was a specific fitness advantage to selecting against it in such an environment is currently unknown. Likewise, most mammals are di or trichromats. Mammals were originally descended from tetrachromats, but the ancestors of most surviving species likely lost this ability when the extra color channels proved useless for the primarily nocturnal niches they filled. Later some species reevolved a third color channel, but true tetrachromacy is quite rare in mammals and we see fewer colors in a more narrow spectrum than what we evolved from. We could probably reintroduce tetrachromacy, but it's not impossible there are trade-offs that could be disadvantageous in some situations.

Even a few seemingly clear-cut advantages can be defects in some situations. Muscular hypertrophy is a good example of this...if nutrition is abundant, being easily able to maintain a large muscle mass has very few downsides, but when food is scarce, the metabolic costs of extra muscle can easily out weight the advantages it provides.

Sure there are some clear cut defects that always hamper survival without ever providing any discernible advantage and vice versa, but the idea of genetic perfection, unless tailored for a very specific purpose, is a farce. This is precisely why high genetic diversity is essentially always a survival advantage at the species level; perfect for one scenario can mean extinction in another.

there was 60min ep about a company that detects the bad gene that a couple having a baby wants to avoid
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/breeding-out-disease-with-reproductive-genetics/

when they find the combination that breeds out like colon cancer for example then they have that baby
post #120 of 122
Quote:
Originally Posted by zealord View Post

finally.


Let's hope they can clone Emma Watson or Emma Stone for me.

Hmm who is better thinking.gif

I'm ordering a Kate Beckinsale! biggrin.gif
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