Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Star Trek Lives!
The search for Spock is over. The famous Vulcan turned out to be a 42-year-old Canadian man. The science journal, New Scientist, says that during surgery, dark-green blood was discovered flowing through the man's arteries. Normally, healthy human blood is dark-red because of the iron and oxygen enriched hemoglobin, but due to a migraine medication the patients blood had turned green.
Tests revealed that sulphur atoms had attached themselves to the hemoglobin, sulfhaemoglobinaemia, causing blood discoloration. The Canadian doctors said the condition usually will correct itself through the natural production and loss of blood cells.
Mr. Spock, however, will forever have green blood because of his dominant Vulcan half is copper based rather than iron based, and he is not real.
In other science news, New Scientist also reported that, for the first time, data has been successfully stored in living neurons. This feat makes possible the combining of human brain cells and computer chips ushering in the age of the truly modern Prometheus - cyborgs.
Neural networks of cultured neurons, any of the nerve cells that make up the the brain, spinal column, and nerves, consisting of a nucleated cell body with one or more dendrites and a single axon, spontaneously fire in specific patterns. Researches have been trying to duplicate natures work, but have not been able to reprogram the patterns with new data without erasing the old data. Electrical stimulation of individual cells acts as a disruptor to the spontaneous firing pattern.
The complex neural firing patterns may be templates the brain uses to store data as memories. By "imprinting" the memories onto artificial neural nets could potentially be the pathway to cyborg chips which could then be implanted into humans to replace damaged nerve and brain tissue. This "borg" technology could also be used to enhance the normal human abilities as was done with Seven of Nine on Star Trek Voyager. With further work, perhaps completely cybernetic function could be achieved and many Mr. Datas will walk among us - if we survive the clone wars.
It is, indeed, a brave new world. Resistance is futile.
The life of Indigo Red is full of adventure. Tune in next time for the Further Adventures of Indigo Red.