Popular iOS game, Tiny Tower, is slowly but surely being ported over to Android by Mobage. Before yesterday, the Android version of the adorable property management game we lacking some of the feature of its iOS cousin. Having never played the game on an iphone, I wasn’t really missing features like store upgrades or the bitbuilder until I read that I was missing out on them. Yesterday, however, I noticed some new features in my game. I am now able to upgrade my stores, access bitbuilder, and share a link to my tower. I can’t find any kind of patch notes for this latest update, so I don’t know if any other updates were made to make it a bit closer to the iOS version, but I would keep an eye out for any other improvements that might have snuck their way into your tower.
There are two emotions that reading scientific articles elicit from me very often, wonder and amazement at the ingenuity of man and deep sadness at the horrors and failures that have been committed. In the past few days there has been a great example of each.
In the case of wonder I present to you Foldit. This game has been around for a while I think I played it for a while a few years ago. This is sort of like SETI@home but instead of using the power of computers it has harnessed the power of human mind in great collections. Great work is rarely done alone. In this case it was the collaboration of many different men and women working together to get discover how this protein is shaped. A brief science primer, it is fairly easy to figure out what a protein is made of but it is the shape of the protein that can be helpful in determining how it functions. This can lead to what it interacts with, which can lead to a cure or treatment. This was not work done in a lab; this was the work of people taking some of their free time to determine the structure of this protein that with time can be used to find a cure to one of the worst diseases on the planet. This is such a hopeful bit of news for so many reasons. Of course the progress that has been but more importantly it was the designers of the game that managed to create that can engage the general public so well and for such good work.
Now for the nasty, in Austria, a scientist committed a series of dangerous actions that put people’s lives at risk and may have caused long lasting damage to many of the patients. This man submitted no ethical documentation, gave false testimony in court about his work, and has not provided the raw data from his experiments. Of course this man was fired and the he was sued by the Medical University of Innsbruck. However, parts of this case didn’t come to fruition and it has been declared by the Austrian government that this man must be given his job back. No university would want someone with such a scarlet letter on their faculty. This arises because he is a public employee and thus there is some level of oversight on hiring and firing. Scientific misconduct is always wrong and anyone who does it is not a good scientist and will be found out eventually. But when it puts people’s lives and health at risk it crosses more lines, lines that should result in criminal charges. There is no license to be scientist nor should there be but when someone does something like this they should never be allowed to work clinically ever again. Luckily, the university is doing its best to keep him from getting near people again but still he is being paid and that is a waste of Austrian Euros (they use Euros, right?).
Okay, now some mental wash to help us think about this clearly:
Science is full of highs and lows but always remember (I try to remind myself of this a lot recently after learning about eugenics, you’d know if you followed me on twitter) that progress is always being made and that we are advancing as a society.