Wednesday, 30 January 2013

Geniuses becoming extinct?

Wanted: a new genius is a vacancy unlikely to be filled according to an article published today in the science journal Nature. Dean Keith Simonton argues that we are unlikely ever again to find a genius of the calibre of Einstein or Newton or Galileo.

Scientific genius is extinct (like Monty Python's Dead Parrot) and he maintains he has some authority on this issue. “I have devoted more than three decades to studying scientific genius....but the very phenomenon that I investigate might have actually ceased to exist.”

Disagree and want to read more? Check out the Library's copy of Nature vol 493 (Jan 31) due in stock in the next few days. Or read the Irish Times'  summary by Dick Ahlstrom here.

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Forensic cancer treatment: DNA mapping

The new Tumor Profiling Unit labs at the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) will use information in tumour DNA to help find the best "personalised" treatments. Its director Prof Alan Ashworth said this was not science fiction and would be day-to-day practice within a decade. The centre will also investigate how cancers become resistant to drugs.

The field of cancer research is moving rapidly away from defining a cancer by where it is in the body. Instead scientists and doctors are looking deeper at what is going wrong inside cancerous cells - a tumour can have 100,000 genetic mutations and these alter over time. Rapid advances in genome profiling are allowing breakthroughs in understanding which mutations transform a healthy cell into a cancerous one. Read more at the ICR website or follow @ICRNews

Thursday, 24 January 2013

Shall I compare thee to a strand of DNA?

For billions of years DNA has been life’s data storage medium. Now, according to an Nature article scientists have used DNA to code and store their media and information, from all of Shakespeare’s sonnets to an audio recording of Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream’ speech. There is also an RSC Chemistry World article on the topic of high capacity stable synthesized DNA - see blogpost title.  So is it time to finally dump all those dvds and cds? The commercial data storage potential is just beginning to get interesting.

Friday, 18 January 2013

Opening hours queries @ Kevin St Library

Lots of queries at the information desk today as to our opening hours next week. Just to confirm Kevin St Library is open as usual next week even though there are few or no classes:

  • Monday- Thursday: 9.30-21.30
  • Fridays: 9.30-17.15
  • Saturdays: 9.30-16.30

And yes the library is open tomorrow Saturday too!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Exam papers : access update

All the exam papers should now be accessible again on the student intranet.

Apologies for inconvenience caused during the server downtime.

Click here for the examination papers access link.

Happy new year

Happy new year and best wishes in the exams to all in DIT Kevin St.
Library opening hours resume today as follows:
  • Monday-Thursday: 9.30-21.30
  • Fridays: 9.30-17.15
  • Saturdays: 9.30-16.30
Any queries email the library or contact us at 01-402-4894