Link roundup: Mar 2019

4 minute read


Science | Mine your mind for the data to drive your career
Nautilus | A Magician Explains Why We See What’s Not There
Nature | Why the sexes don’t feel pain the same way
Quantum computing for the very curious
All the Cannabinoids in Marijuana That Aren’t THC
Nature | ‘Particle’ robot swarm moves without computer control (video)
Wired | The Read/Write Metaphor Is a Flawed Way to Talk About DNA
Nature | Protein-slaying drugs could be the next blockbuster therapies
Aeon | Why is simpler better?
Draw molecular network on Jupyter notebook with rdkit and cytoscape.js-2 #RDKit #cytoscape
How UMAP Works UMAP is dimension reduction algorithm like PCA analysis. Paper is available in arXiv.
Death of the calorie
Surgical stitch-up: meet the placebo surgeon
Quanta | How Artificial Intelligence Is Changing Science
Nature | How I was almost mistaken for a chocolatier
Nature | Enzymes trapped and zapped for use outside cells (Paper in Angewandte Chemie)
Merchants of Hype
A Stanford psychologist on the art of avoiding assholes

I would make a distinction between temporary and certified assholes, because all of us under the wrong conditions can be temporary assholes. I’m talking about somebody who is consistently this way, who consistently treats other people this way. I think it’s more complicated than simply saying an asshole is someone who doesn’t care about other people. In fact, some of them really do care — they want to make you feel hurt and upset, they take pleasure in it.

Why Do We Need Sleep? Israeli Scientists Solve the Mystery
In the Pipeline | A New FDA Commissioner, Suddenly

… See, just get the government out of the way and everything starts to flourish! But as I’ve said many times, the FDA is not the real roadblock in this business. It’s biology. More specifically, it’s our lack of understanding of biology. Lowering standards will do nothing to help that at all.

The professional advisers who can help you to move from academia to industry
ACS Chem Bio | Esterification Delivers a Functional Enzyme into a Human Cell
Q Rev Biophys | Frustration in Biomolecules 2014 paper, but I only read it recently. Besides providing a nice mental model of frustration in thinking about protein physics, the text is written in decidedly unacademic prose.
Nature | Complete biosynthesis of cannabinoids and their unnatural analogues in yeast
PLoS Comp Bio | Script of scripts: A pragmatic workflow system for daily computational research
This is like Makefile, but more user-friendly, you can switch languages easily, and is hosted in Jupyter notebook. If you constantly switch between bash, Python, R, and others; this is good to keep your workflow in one file. I think I don’t need it at the moment.
Choosing our religion

Creation is thus seen as a relationship of radical dependence. To cite an insight deriving from St Thomas Aquinas, God’s creation of the world should not be likened to a carpenter making a chest. A better analogy would be more intimate – a singer producing a song, for instance. The difference is profound. Carpenter and chest are discrete entities. Carpenters can pass on the articles they make, never seeing them again. But a song is by definition an emanation of a singer.

A crucial difference between humans and other animals is equally plain. Genuinely fulfilled human lives involve further dimensions including dignity, which is connected with the exercise of choice; and virtue, implying the need to stretch or transcend ourselves. G. K. Chesterton wrote that it makes little sense to upbraid a lion for not being properly lion-like: lions are lions. The same is not true of human beings. People everywhere have a striking idea that they ought to behave in certain “humane” ways, but also an awareness that they do not in fact behave as they should. It is often noted that these two facts are the root of all clear thinking about ourselves and our world.

Did You Know Pandas Can Do So Much?
I find these Ruben Bolling’s illustrations amusing: 1 | 2
GQ | The Secrets of the World’s Greatest Art Thief
What We Owe a Rabbit
Regarding the Em Dash
A history of Singapore in 10 dishes

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