Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Head, It Does Not Always Rule the Heart

That quote from Luba in 1983 may be true in ways she never imagined.

90% of the cells in your body are not your body cells at all. They are the bacteria along for the ride. Bacteria help control how we think, or at least feel.
Most of them are benefical, they say. They help with digestion and immunity, I suppose. A Boston psychiatrist named James Greenblatt is having success with his claim:

...Greenblatt’s provocative idea — that psychiatric woes can be solved by targeting the digestive system — is increasingly reinforced by cutting-edge science. For decades, researchers have known of the connection between the brain and the gut. Anxiety often causes nausea and diarrhea, and depression can change appetite. The connection may have been established, but scientists thought communication was one way: it traveled from the brain to the gut, and not the other way around.
But now, a new understanding of the trillions of microbes living in our guts reveals that this communication process is more like a multi-lane superhighway than a one-way street....

... this radical treatment protocol has actually been decades in the making...

Greenblatt's actually targeting a vast, complex, and mysterious realm of the human body ...recent research suggests that early microbiome development might play a key role in at least some aspects of one’s adult mental health...

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Exclusive for 90 Years

Intellectual property rights are intended to encourage creators (inventor and authors) to create. The idea is that we give the creators exclusive rights to make money from their creations and they will spend more effort in creating them. It seems to work pretty well in the patent world. An inventor has 20 years to earn an income from his invention.

Authors get 90 years. Few authors even live 90 years beyond their publication date. How can this be a good idea? Sure, it may be good for the author but how is it good for society? (...and if it isn't good for society, why would society enforce it?) The lawyers' claim is that the ability to make money will ensure that the books stay in print and are accessible.

This does not match my idea of common sense. When works are out of copyright, they will be cheaper. Also, other writers can use parts of the work or make new creations around it: write a screenplay, use poetry as lyrics or incorporate segments of video. A new generation of creators can create without the cost or legal confusion of navigating copyright. Evidence says that my intuition is right and the lawyers are wrong.