Science and Technology links (April 22 2023)

  1. There are many theories regarding what biological aging. Animals can differ by up to six orders of magnitude (100000x) in longevity. Some animal species like the lobster or the naked model rate do not exhibit measurable biological aging (they have negligible senescence) whereas trees and other plants often have negative aging (they get more fit over time). Pamplona et al. (2023) argue that there is animal aging is the result of a genetic program. They report that long-lived species do not have greater defense against damage nor greater repair abilities, except maybe for the skin (since long-lived species have greater abilities to repair their skins). In fact, long-lived species tend to have weaker antioxidant systems. Similar animal species have large longevity differences, and it is difficult to manipulate them to change this longevity by large factors, which is more consistent with a programmed model of aging than with a damage model. How might have programmed aging evolved? It may have evolved through group selection: species with more rapid aging can evolve and adapt more quickly, with lesser chances that they will go extinct.
  2. Obesity seems to increase inflammation and may contribute to osteoarthritis. Obesity is directly associated with the clinical and functional consequences of knee osteoarthritis.
  3. The European Union passed a privacy-protection legal framework (GDPR) a few years ago. Those of us visiting European websites are exposed to it through the cookie notifiers and other warnings. Johnson finds that the economic consequences of GDPR are mostly bad for Europe:

    The GDPR reduced investment for EU technology ventures. The GDPR disproportionately hurts smaller firms, to the benefit of larger firms (often large international corporations). Many European firms report to be limited in their ability to innovate due to the GDPR.

    As a related fact, there is no European company on the lists of most succesful technology companies provided by Wikipedia. Europe has some large technology companies such as Dassault Systèmes (France), Spotify and SAP (Germany), as well as several video-game companies.

  4. Female authors as well as people at top institutions are given preferential treatment during peer review among economists.
  5. Animals may have evolved to use sugar (fructose) as a protection against mass extinction: when you eat a lot of sugar, your body may tend to store more energy and water for use at a later date, it may reduce its oxygen usage, it may drive it to store salt, and raise blood pressure.

Daniel Lemire, "Science and Technology links (April 22 2023)," in Daniel Lemire's blog, April 22, 2023.

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Daniel Lemire

A computer science professor at the University of Quebec (TELUQ).

One thought on “Science and Technology links (April 22 2023)”

  1. 3) There isn’t also any european company on the linked list before the GPDR was implemented (GPDR did go live in 2018)

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