Thursday, November 9, 2017

What's in a Word? Crapsule


It's possible that the microbiome, that collection of bacteria that live in our bodies (mostly the gut), may have as much influence on our health as our genetic makeup. After all, there are more than 150 times as many genes in those organisms as there are in our own genome. An imbalance in the microbiome, known as disbiosis, has been linked to many conditions, ranging from inflammatory bowel disease to autism, to patients' responses to certain cancer treatments. 

The first successful treatment relating to the microbiome was the use of faecal microbial transplants to treat C. difficile (brought on by overuse of antibiotics). FMT, as it is known, is exactly what it sounds like. And when you encapsulate those FMTs, they're called crapsules. And there's your word of the day. Read The Economist for more information.

Other Posts on Words

Monday, August 28, 2017

Harvey: Once-in-500-years-storm

In my recent post about the Dutch approach to preparing for storms and floods, I mentioned that their goal was to be ready for a once-in-a-thousand-years storm. We were told on a tour that America's goal is to be ready for a once-in-a-hundred-years storm. Since Harvey is being described as a once-in-500-years storm, it's not surprising Houston wasn't ready for it. I wonder if the Dutch would have coped?

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The E-mail Larry Page Should Have Written to James Damore

James Damore's infamous memo objecting to Google's attempts to recruit women - and thus discriminating against men, he claims - has generated a tsunami of response. It's the latest skirmish in the recent publicity around the discrimination and harassment women face in the tech industry.

The Economist took it upon themselves to pen the response to Damore's memo that Larry Page should have written rather than firing him. I liked it. Read it here.

This hit home for me, since I recently wrote a post about the negative stereotyping of women in tech. Read that post here.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017