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Member since: Wed Feb 25, 2009, 02:07 AM
Number of posts: 1,915

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Supreme Court to rule on patentability of human genes

Supreme Court to rule on patentability of human genes
Lower court ruled that genes can be patented once isolated from the body.

The Supreme Court announced on Friday that it will consider a legal challenge to a patent on a breast cancer gene held by the firm Myriad Genetics. The case could have broad implications for the future of medical diagnostic techniques.

In March, the Supreme Court ordered an appeals court to reconsider a 2011 decision holding that genetic material could be patented once it has been "isolated" from the human body. At the time, the Supreme Court had just rejected patents on medical diagnostic techniques, and the high court wanted the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit to re-consider its previous ruling in light of this new precedent.

In August, the Federal Circuit, which is responsible for hearing all patent law appeals, decided to stick with its previous ruling. It once again concluded that DNA sequences could be patented once they had been isolated from the human body. Now the Supreme Court will have a chance to check the Federal Circuit's work.
The Federal Circuit's ruling was decided by a 2-1 margin. The dissenting judge, William Bryson, compared isolating the DNA to snapping a leaf from a tree. "Prematurely plucking the leaf would not turn it into a human-made invention," Judge Bryson wrote in August. "That would remain true if there were minor differences between the plucked leaf and the fallen autumn leaf, unless those differences imparted 'markedly different characteristics' to the plucked leaf."

more here

The patent system needs SERIOUS reform.

GOP recommends Lamar Smith, SOPA author and global warming critic, as chairman of Science,Space,tech

GOP recommends Lamar Smith, SOPA author and global warming critic, as chairman of Science, Space, and Tech committee

US Congressman Lamar Smith has long expressed doubt that global warming is a man-made phenomenon, so it shouldn't come as a surprise that environmentalists are dismayed by news that Smith is likely to chair the Science, Space, and Technology committee for the upcoming 113th Congress. US House Speaker John Boehner has put forth recommendations of the House Republican Steering Committee as to who should lead the various committees, with Boehner naming Smith as his preferred pick for the all-important science/tech position. As the Huffington Post notes, Smith acknowledges a changing climate but has previously lambasted the media for pinning fault for global warming on human activity.

Should the GOP ratify Smith's nomination as is widely expected, it wouldn't mark the first time a skeptic has held the job. Outgoing chairman Rep. Ralph Hall expressed similar qualms about what many consider a clear-cut issue, once saying, "we have a lot of science that tells us they're not basing it [global warming] on real scientific facts."

Additionally, those following net neutrality will instantly recognize Rep. Smith as the author of the controversial, much-maligned Stop Online Piracy Act. Though SOPA legislation was ultimately tabled in response to fierce backlash, Smith's promotion to committee chairman could raise new concerns that he'll again attempt to address online piracy with similarly heavy-handed measures. It's expected that the House will vote in favor of Smith's new role today.


This comes even as the US is fighting off heavy competition from other nations on science and tech.
This news just blows my mind.

Google Launches “VetNet” To Help Military Veterans Re-Enter The Civilian Life

^^ VetNet Intro Video From Google

Today, Google launched a new initiative called VetNet, to help people connect and re-enter the working life. The company is putting its social backend, Google+, to work on this project.

We recently went to the “Vets In Tech” hackathon, where we met some amazing folks who are trying to build great things outside of military life. This new initiative is a fantastic addition to the cause.

Here’s what the company had to say about it today:

We’ve put the powers of Google+ behind a single hub called VetNet. Today, VetNet launches as a partnership with three founding organizations: the U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Hiring Our Heroes program, the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) and Hire Heroes USA. In the long run, other organizations will be able to offer their services to the veteran community, all in the same easy-to-use place.

Why is this important? For many reasons. First off, Google is huge and can move mountains for just about any cause or situation...

By connecting vets with actual helpful resources for employment and support, Google is doing something great here. Will folks in the military gravitate to it? Will it be too “geeky”? That’s the question we have to wait to answer. Until then, it’s worth a look.

read more

Google helps launch VetNet, a G+ powered hub for veterans and spouses to rebuild their civvy careers

Back in November last year, Google launched a new site called Google For Veterans to provide tools and assistance for the American men and women who have fought for their country.

And now Google has lent its Google+ platform to VetNet, a partnership between the US Chamber of Commerce’s Hiring Our Heroes program, the Institute for Veterans and Military Families (IVMF) and Hire Heroes USA. Though there are three founding organizations, others can offer their services through the site too.

The purpose of the hub is pretty simple – it will serve up resources around employment, be it a from-scratch job-search or helping those looking to build their own firm.

While the various strands are pulled together under a single online domain, the individual resources are organized into three Google+ tracks, each on its own page – Basic Training Track (resumes, interviewing tips etc), Career Connections Track and Entrepreneur Track.


Link to the VetNet Site

This puts three major veteran organizations(more to join),training courses and a database of about 1 million Veteran preferred jobs under one roof. Good job Google . They do not stand to gain a penny from doing it, but it's great to see them do it for the sake of doing something good.

Listen all y'all, this is sabotage?

"For whatever reasons, the conservative bloggers have latched onto Orca as the reason it all fell apart," Moffatt added. Those bloggers have suggested that developers with Democratic sympathies somehow acted as a fifth column within the Romney camp. Targeted Victory was singled out by some bloggers because a few of its developers worked for Al Gore in the past.

"Why do they have Al Gore's dev working on Romney's social media development?!" blogger Catherine Ann Fitzpatrick asked. "Truly, how can they expect dedication?" She also singled out another developer who is African-American and "who has a 96 percent chance of being an Obama voter… I will be accused of 'racism' for even flagging. But it's the truth."

Moffatt said that this kind of thinking puts too much faith in a single piece of software. "Anyone who knows campaigns knows this was all baked in before that day—there was no magic, Orca wasn't a silver bullet," he said. "But on the flip side, when you're on a campaign that has only six months of infrastructure time, sometimes you have to throw a Hail Mary. It's really hard to go up against someone who has four years of lead time.

more here

On related news..notice how casually Race comes into play?

Oh and also Republicans suck when it comes to technology. Its no secret President Obama has the silicon valley firmly in his pocket.

PS: I love the top rated comment for that article

Well, they /would/ posit sabotage instead of admitting their people were incompetent, wouldn't they?

Reality denial is practically a sport with those folks.
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