We have created artificial life!!
I found this completely fascinating. Apparently the mainstream media didn't. You heard about it a couple of days and then nothing since. No debate, no outrage from the hard religious right no praise from the extreme secular left. Nothing. I personally think this is a fantastic accomplishment.
Really I'm psyched about this.
Before we even start talking about moral or ethical issues that could surround this I want to talk about the possibilities that me as your average layperson can see. The two big things that come to mind is the medical uses, and mind you this isn't going to be any time soon, is cancer and A.I.D.S. treatment. If you could create an artificial white blood cell that is immune to the A.I.D.S. virus yet will kill the A.I.D.S. virus you could cure it, or create a cell that will eat cancer cells, again a cure. I guess you could theoretically cure just about anything maybe mix it with nanotechnology the sky's the limit. Maybe create an organism that will eat toxic waste or oil use it to clean up a disaster or two.
Again like I said they've just now had success with a man made genome that will just replicate it self. I figure it'll be a decade or two before the have any success customizing the dna to do specific things. Like I said I'm excited about this, my little mind is taking this accomplishment and going all kinds of places with this.
Of course theirs always the downside to this type of thing. As well as I can see all the good things that could be done with this I can see all kinds of nasty things. We wouldn't have to modify existing diseases for weapons...we could make new ones. Terrible ones that don't respond to antibiotics or any known type of treatment. It's possible.
Lots of things are possible. Like I said this is something that hasn't gotten a lot of air play from either side. No religious right decrying this as an abomination, no secular left shouting that this is proof that we're just as good as God. I guess this story just isn't sexy enough to make the front page. I mean hey, it's not like Dr. Frankenstein created his monster, now THAT would make the front page. It's just a single celled organism that replicates on it's own created by humans in a lab.