1736: "Manhattan Project"

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1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby thunk » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:31 pm UTC

Image

Alt-text: On the plus side, we definitely killed that cancer over there, even if we caused a bunch more everywhere else.

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Cabooceratops » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:44 pm UTC

Manhattan Project 2: Manhattan Takes Manhattan
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby qvxb » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:53 pm UTC

WOPR says no!

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby dash » Wed Sep 21, 2016 2:32 pm UTC

Best one in a long time.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby cellocgw » Wed Sep 21, 2016 5:32 pm UTC

The name "Manhattan Project" was an unclassified code name specifying a certain highly classified program.

Re-use of code names is most certainly disallowed. It's worse than writing programs that create nonunique UUIDs. :wink:


Back to the topic:
Just in case anyone was under some sort of illusory belief that a massive investment of time, money, and geniuses could produce a "cure" for all cancers in finite time, be assured that molecular biology is much, much more difficult to analyze than nuclear reaction cross-sections. Not to mention that nuclear events take place in nanoseconds (yea yea I know half-life blah blah) while the transition of a cell from normal to cancerous and the subsequent proliferation of child cells can take years.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Angua » Wed Sep 21, 2016 5:46 pm UTC

I mean, I heard the government has the cure and is covering it up, so we don't even need this.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Soupspoon » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:07 pm UTC

cellocgw wrote:The name "Manhattan Project" was an unclassified code name specifying a certain highly classified program.

Re-use of code names is most certainly disallowed. It's worse than writing programs that create nonunique UUIDs. :wink

"And President Trump has just announced Operation Xyzzy, the new initiative to deal with the mess created in the aftermaths of Operation Qwertyuiop, Operation Asddddddddfffffff and Operation Operation Part Two(.3b(vii)), in our vain attempts to claim and bring home enough new words from outside the anglosphere to sustain our continued operational needs..."

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby StClair » Wed Sep 21, 2016 11:30 pm UTC

So, create Dr. Manhattan and get him to fix the problem?
Wait, no, Veidt he ends up giving people cancer...

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Sir Dancelot » Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:38 am UTC

"An ounce of prevention..." for some reason doesn't apply to cancer research.

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Angua » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:01 am UTC

Yes, all that work on stopping people smoking, getting rid of asbestos, and warning people about betel clearly comes from no one caring about prevention.

Plus the HPV vaccine, ongoing research into whether or not aspirin helps prevent cancer, and more.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Plasma Mongoose » Thu Sep 22, 2016 7:45 am UTC

The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby orthogon » Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:10 am UTC

Plasma Mongoose wrote:The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.

No, you need to fire it into the sun.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby SecondTalon » Thu Sep 22, 2016 10:50 am UTC

Plasma Mongoose wrote:The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.

Don't post in red text.

I just spent a minute trying to figure out which mod got halfway through banning you for whatever it was you said before I figured out that you didn't say anything (beyond the written text) and that no mod was banning you.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Yakk » Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:15 pm UTC

SecondTalon wrote:
Plasma Mongoose wrote:The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.

Don't post in red text.

I just spent a minute trying to figure out which mod got halfway through banning you for whatever it was you said before I figured out that you didn't say anything (beyond the written text) and that no mod was banning you.

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Whizbang » Thu Sep 22, 2016 3:23 pm UTC

Plasma Mongoose wrote:The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.


Incorrect

The methods that can be used to kill cancer are many.

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby ijuin » Thu Sep 22, 2016 8:47 pm UTC

The problem is that cancer doesn't have a single cause or even a keystone mechanism by which it occurs (e.g. a set of genetic mutations common to all cancers). Cancer can be caused by literally anything that breaks a cell's regulating mechanisms which normally prevent it from dividing out of control. Curing all cancers is like preventing all car crashes--there are so many different ways that it can happen, that the only way to prevent it 100% is by preemptively killing the patient (or keeping the cars entirely off of the road).

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby duodecimus » Thu Sep 22, 2016 10:01 pm UTC

Really, actually curing cancer likely requires understanding and control of genetics and nanotechnology on a level so advanced that I'm not sure I've ever read a scifi story that has had it available to the general public.

Its probably about as easy to solve telomere degradation and cure aging.

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Pfhorrest » Fri Sep 23, 2016 1:39 am UTC

To the small degree I understand it, curing cancer and curing aging are largely the same problem, as telomere degrading and the consequent cell death is thought to be largely an anti-cancer adaptation, and fixing that would give longevous immortality only so long as the elevated cancer risk didn't eat you from the inside first.

Aren't there some species that are known to be immune to cancer? What is their mechanism, and with recent advances like CRISPR now available, what are the (technological) hurdles to just copying that for our own use?
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Soupspoon » Fri Sep 23, 2016 2:34 am UTC

duodecimus wrote:Really, actually curing cancer likely requires understanding and control of genetics and nanotechnology on a level so advanced that I'm not sure I've ever read a scifi story that has had it available to the general public.
I'm sure I've read a few stories where (near) universal treatments of that kind are the norm. (Actual universal treatments tend to be the launch-pad for the whole tale of rediscovering fertility, by accident or design, or something, it perhaps having been a part of the functional-immortality deal..)

The most recent, that I recall, is Kim Stanley Robinson's "2312" novel, but (as is typical, not just of him but see also his Mars Trilogy) Earthers seem to be granted the miracle treatments only sparsely, at least until and unless the off-Earth society might somehow look charitably upon the huddled masses of Mother Earth..

In Time, the film, also sees it as a 'solved problem' that has somehow ended up upstaged by an enforced economy based on life-spans. And in Elysium we have the same old 'available but not made available' trope, this time for the poor and earthbound...

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Sir Dancelot » Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:17 am UTC

Angua wrote:Yes, all that work on stopping people smoking, getting rid of asbestos, and warning people about betel clearly comes from no one caring about prevention.

Plus the HPV vaccine, ongoing research into whether or not aspirin helps prevent cancer, and more.


Yes, encouraging more people to quit smoking, which has been somewhat successful, is prevention. What about getting people to quit consuming chlorinated hydrocarbons and endocrine disruptors?

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Liri » Sat Sep 24, 2016 1:54 am UTC

Like Pfhorrest said, longevity/"immortality" is all about riding that very fine line between cancer and apoptosis. Henrietta Lacks has got it made. :?

The evolutionary impetus for us to die so that more well-adapted offspring can take over probably has something to do with why our non-stem cells don't express telomerase (over 80% of cancer cells do). Mother Nature doesn't want us to live longer than a century or two. I can't answer why animals like hydra are seemingly immune to normal aging, but I'd guess it's because they usually die from physical damage and rarely live all that long (but it's hard to tell).
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Angua » Sat Sep 24, 2016 8:24 am UTC

Sir Dancelot wrote:
Angua wrote:Yes, all that work on stopping people smoking, getting rid of asbestos, and warning people about betel clearly comes from no one caring about prevention.

Plus the HPV vaccine, ongoing research into whether or not aspirin helps prevent cancer, and more.


Yes, encouraging more people to quit smoking, which has been somewhat successful, is prevention. What about getting people to quit consuming chlorinated hydrocarbons and endocrine disruptors?

So, you're basically going to ignore lots of other things to complain about one thing. There have been quite a lot of studies on pesticides, but they are pretty inconclusive at the amounts that people would be 'consuming'. Lots of EDCs are being looked at and being phased out or banned. Otherwise, work into cancer prevention does have a lot to do with health and safety practices getting better these days.

I mean, I'm sorry the link isn't as clearcut as you would like, but it doesn't mean that a lot of work isn't being done into these things, and policies changing accordingly.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby speising » Sat Sep 24, 2016 9:40 am UTC

What have the Romans ever done for us?

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby ijuin » Sat Sep 24, 2016 4:37 pm UTC

Brought peace?

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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Eternal Density » Thu Sep 29, 2016 5:04 am UTC

My cancer got cured :D But I had one of the best cancers.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby david.windsor » Thu Sep 29, 2016 9:02 pm UTC

Plasma Mongoose wrote:The only sure way to cure cancer is to nuke it from orbit.

Only way to be sure.
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby david.windsor » Thu Sep 29, 2016 9:08 pm UTC

speising wrote:What have the Romans ever done for us?


sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Pfhorrest » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:01 pm UTC

david.windsor wrote:
speising wrote:What have the Romans ever done for us?


sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health

Well yes of course, but besides all of that, what have the Romans ever done for us?

(Someone already delivered the punchline earlier, so this feels kinda wrong to be making this part of the joke now).
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby david.windsor » Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:40 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:
david.windsor wrote:
speising wrote:What have the Romans ever done for us?


sanitation, medicine, education, wine, public order, irrigation, roads, the fresh water system and public health

Well yes of course, but besides all of that, what have the Romans ever done for us?

(Someone already delivered the punchline earlier, so this feels kinda wrong to be making this part of the joke now).


It is Python, as long as each sentence is correct your brain just fills in the missing parts. :lol:
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Re: 1736: "Manhattan Project"

Postby Solra Bizna » Fri Sep 30, 2016 7:41 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:Aren't there some species that are known to be immune to cancer? What is their mechanism, and with recent advances like CRISPR now available, what are the (technological) hurdles to just copying that for our own use?

To my knowledge, there aren't any long-lived species that are completely immune to cancer, just some that are more resistant than others. Humans, as I recall, are already at the high end of this scale. This would help explain why there have been so many new "breakthroughs" in cancer treatment that work on lab mice, but relatively few that work on humans.

(Poor budgerigars. They have an annual cancer rate in the neighborhood of 20%.)


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