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By Brendan Loy (Twitter/FriendFeed)

CNN Breaking News — Scientists in Geneva mark “new territory” in physics, smashing two proton beams at record high energy rate.

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14 Responses to “Twitter: CNN Breaking News …”

  1. Brendan Loy Says:

    Methinks some nerdy intern was working the CNN Breaking News alert desk overnight. Heh.

  2. AMLTrojan Says:

    … And we’re all still here!

  3. Brendan Loy Says:

    As Doug Mataconis mused, “And the universe didn’t end? Or wait maybe it did and we just don’t know it.”

  4. Brendan Loy Says:

    UPDATE: Apparently the only reason we’re all still here is because the thing malfunctioned again.

    After the last reported malfunction, a commenter on Alan Sullivan’s site offered the following theory: “I read the theory somewhere that the LHC taught us the secrets of time travel, and that time travel is such a gawdawful mess for all of humanity, and that someone in the future is coming back in time to keep screwing up the LHC to keep us from getting into that gawdawful mess.”

    Heh.

  5. Brendan Loy Says:

    Never mind… I guess the malfunction(s) preceded the success.

    I still like the idea that our future selves might be messing with us. :)

  6. ceiliazul Says:

    here’s some REAL breaking news (CNN doesn’t have any mention.)

    http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/03/judge-nullifies-gene-patents/

    I very much hope this isn’t a hoax. And I very much hope it stands all the to the Supreme Court.

  7. ceiliazul Says:

    The subject of the news article is a biomedical testing company. The possible future impact is huge. Monsanto lawyers have to be a little less comfy than they were last week.

    Of course, this is just a start… lots more to come in this battle.

  8. David K. Says:

    ceilazul, fantastic news!

  9. Alasdair Says:

    I saw this yesterday – and I’m hoping that it is being done sensibly … working with genes tends to be more than a little expensive – and, if a company finds that it no longer can make a profit from genetic research, then the incentive to pay for the work to be done is mostly removed …

    In the specific case, it seems as though the patent could have been used to prevent others using *any* diagnostic technique to screen for the specific gene – and that goes way beyond the legitimate desirable purposes of patents …

    In a situation wherein a company develops a process or procedure or technique to more easily detect a specific gene, then that company having a patent for that process or procedure or technique specifically seems a reasonable use fo patent law …

    After all, as I said earlier, if said company isn’t going to get any benefit from the expenditure, it is likely to spend its resources on paths with better profit potential … and, personally, I like the idea that companies do their own thing to develop mew things to keep us healthier – and I’m not offended if the company that makes the expenditures to find these things also gets the chance to recoup the expenditures with profit …

    I’m curious – does anyone know what the last significant medical advance to come out of Cuba was ? Or out of North Korea ? Both of those countries presumably have equivalnent spreads of IQ and ability in their population as do the western countries …

  10. ceiliazul Says:

    New drugs have a period of copyright monopoly (I believe 7 years?) That would allow companies to return on their investment, while preventing companies from holding the world hostage.

  11. Alasdair Says:

    And the most recent medical advance out of Cuba or North Korea was …?

  12. Joe Mama Says:

    New drugs are patented, not copyrighted. The current patent term is 20 years from the date of the earliest application to which the issued patent claims priority, which is the allotted time for inventors to exploit their monopoly in return for disclosing their invention to the public.

    I’m considering doing a guest post on the Myriad decision if I can do it without delving too far into the legal weeds of patent law.

  13. ceiliazul Says:

    Copyright != patent, right. The idea patent term seems a good compromise.

    I agree with Alasdair that innovation slows without a payback mechanism. I hope Alasdair would agree that gene patents are not the only thing differentiating us from North Korea.

  14. Alasdair Says:

    ceiliazul – there are indeed many things differentiating us from North Korea – and *I* hope that ceiliazul would agree that we want to keep at least as many things differentiating us from North Korea as we can – at least until North Korea becomes more like the US.

    I suspect that all of the regulars on this blog have family members who have benefited from living in the industrialised western democracies which encouraged (rather than dis-incentivised) people to find newer better medical treatments … (or even find more effective safer versions of older tried-and-true medical treatments – I know that I prefer aspirin tablets over willow-bark tea) …



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