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    Thread: 200 Page Book Converted into DNA Code by Researchers

    1. #1
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      200 Page Book Converted into DNA Code by Researchers

      I had read recently about the potential for DNA to store ridiculous amounts of data. Stumbled across this next breakthrough, which I thought was just mind-blowing.

      Book written in DNA code | Science | The Guardian
      http://i.imgur.com/Ke7qCcF.jpg
      (Or see the very best of my journal entries @ dreamwalkerchronicles.blogspot)

    2. #2
      Xei
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      Yeah, let's let the internet mutate and evolve by natural selection.

      I can see no way that this technology might accidentally bring about judgement day.

    3. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      Yeah, let's let the internet mutate and evolve by natural selection.

      I can see no way that this technology might accidentally bring about judgement day.
      Wait, what?

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      But.... I heard that bacteria can pick up DNA which is just laying around. I guess it's possible to be infected with twilight now, like literally.
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      Reminded me of this, probably the same article you were reading.
      DNA storage breakthrough: 700TB of data in one gram | ITProPortal.com
      Not sure if it's mentioned in that article, but the only problem at the moment is that it's difficult to write data and the DNA does not preserve well. Yet.
      Last edited by tommo; 08-22-2012 at 10:47 AM.
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    6. #6
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      Yeah, that was the one, tommo.

      Quote Originally Posted by Oros
      But.... I heard that bacteria can pick up DNA which is just laying around. I guess it's possible to be infected with twilight now, like literally.
      LMFAO!
      http://i.imgur.com/Ke7qCcF.jpg
      (Or see the very best of my journal entries @ dreamwalkerchronicles.blogspot)

    7. #7
      Xei
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      On a serious note I'm pretty sure nothing will come of this... in fact it sounds kinda gimmicky. Certainly it won't be used in the long run, anyway. DNA has multiple disadvantages as data storage. The main reason is that it wasn't consciously designed; it's just the best thing that can come around by incremental improvements of blind chemistry, whereas we can perform huge improvements which isn't limited by naturally occurring chemistry. It's like the difference between a cheetah and a jet plane. And the function it does perform isn't really suited for computing. It's not intended for superfast reading and writing, for instance... there's one protein which duplicates DNA and it does it at its own pace. Designing a significantly faster protein is way beyond our capability at the moment, and there's no reason to think it could be much improved anyway.

      DNA is pretty dense but you can't just look at the molecule in isolation; there's no reason to think the problems of reading and writing are soluble. In fact we can already synthesise polymers with denser information content than DNA... it's just that again there's no reason to think we could use it efficiently.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      Yeah, let's let the internet mutate and evolve by natural selection.

      I can see no way that this technology might accidentally bring about judgement day.
      Yeah, we're definitely taking about putting this DNA into a living thing which will reproduce (because that would be possible).

      I can see the way you gathered that from the above article

    9. #9
      Xei
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      Although as a matter of fact the intention is to reproduce the data (or sections of it). That's a fairly fundamental thing you'd want to do. You don't need life (whatever that is) for natural selection.
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    10. #10
      LD's this year: ~7 tommo's Avatar
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      And we would selectively reproduce it, it wouldn't do it itself.

      Quote Originally Posted by Xei View Post
      On a serious note I'm pretty sure nothing will come of this... in fact it sounds kinda gimmicky. Certainly it won't be used in the long run, anyway. DNA has multiple disadvantages as data storage. The main reason is that it wasn't consciously designed; it's just the best thing that can come around by incremental improvements of blind chemistry, whereas we can perform huge improvements which isn't limited by naturally occurring chemistry. It's like the difference between a cheetah and a jet plane. And the function it does perform isn't really suited for computing. It's not intended for superfast reading and writing, for instance... there's one protein which duplicates DNA and it does it at its own pace. Designing a significantly faster protein is way beyond our capability at the moment, and there's no reason to think it could be much improved anyway.

      DNA is pretty dense but you can't just look at the molecule in isolation; there's no reason to think the problems of reading and writing are soluble. In fact we can already synthesise polymers with denser information content than DNA... it's just that again there's no reason to think we could use it efficiently.
      Your issue with it is resting on us not being able to improve it. Which you really have no idea about.

      I do think you're probably correct. But I know next to nothing about this as well.
      One thing I've seen is they make electronic cars and spiders out of DNA. And they actually want to research further to see if they could get them to
      delivery drugs in our body to cancer cells or whatever. Thing is, they need a track to go along, how do you get that track in your body? Only way I can think is
      nanobots. However it's done, it requires getting to the site first to put the track in. So it's pointless.

      I think it would be good to see electronics running from hearts, and basically being a brain but electronic. And we would just power it with sugar.

    11. #11
      Xei
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      Quote Originally Posted by tommo View Post
      Your issue with it is resting on us not being able to improve it. Which you really have no idea about.
      Well, there doesn't seem to be any reason to think that we should be able. More to the point, there's no reason to think we should be able to do it with DNA but not some other (better) polymer. In fact I can already think of an improvement... get rid of two of the bases. They are redundant.

      One thing I've seen is they make electronic cars and spiders out of DNA.
      I think you must be mistranslating this story, because this seems bizarre... do you mean scientists can make those things out of protein, via DNA?

    12. #12
      LD's this year: ~7 tommo's Avatar
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      I mis-remembered. Don't know why I left that in there, I thought it was wrong, but anyway.
      World's smallest electric car made of single molecule | ZDNet

      But the spider one was correct
      DNA 'Spiderbot' Crawls into Action : Discovery News

    13. #13
      Xei
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      Ah... it's not made entirely out of DNA. That makes more sense. Its body is a protein but it has DNA feet so that it can walk along a DNA rail.

    14. #14
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      Yeah.
      Anyway, point was nanobots will be the future, those will not. To my knowledge anyway, nanobots would be more controllable etc.
      There must be some reason they're researching that though. Maybe they'll be better for some applications.

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      Regardless of how practical any of this really is, you have to admit that it is pretty cool.
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      We all know how good DNA is at maintaining integrity. Right guys?

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