Very nice to hear @Kendall in her podcast essentially discuss how the principles of evolution/natural selection are general and go beyond biological life. Evolutionary principles are successfully applied in computers and we use genetic algorithms in our own work to solve optimization problems.
super interesting topic. I’d love to hear more about what you do @rafi
We work in computational biology to understand molecular recognition (all the factors that affect the specificity and selectivity of interactions) between small-molecules (like drugs) and proteins as well as designing protein with improved properties in what is called computational protein design. We use all these ideas from machine learning, computational physics and more to create computational methods for the development of new medicines, and to understand the side-effects of existing drugs. I am originally a physicist, using computers to understand biology at the interface between physics, chemistry and biology.
Agreed, great podcast. I sometimes have to pause the Mirai podcast to sit and absorb what was just said, but this one takes the cake in that respect. It’s taking me forever to get through it.
BTW, wasps eat other insects (like caterpillars) that may be after the bonsai…so they are definitely a good part of the ecosystem
this sounds fascinating. I’ve been digging more into machine learning lately and its mind-boggling.
Wasps have a very important role in the ecosystem. They will be eating greenfly and bugs off your bonsai throughout the year. Honey bees evolved from wasps about 150 million years ago. The evolution of “honey bees” or “vegatarian” wasps (because honey bees are a massive family including bees with stings and bees that dont have stings, solitary bees and bees in colonies) ran along side the evolution of flowering plant… so all the trees and flowers that we see today are a result of evolution driven by the “vegetarian” wasps…
Hornets are the great white sharks of the air, predating on wasps and bees and other insects.
Must say the pod casts I am really enjoying. Really interesting. Love the banter, the chats, the deep philosophical discussions. The depth of knowledge…