Big Data Problem

According to a 2017 interview with Kevin Murphy, Earth Science Data Systems Program Executive at NASA, the biggest challenge now is not going where no man has gone before, but managing the data.

Murphy states that as of 2016, 12.1TB of data stream in from observation posts and sensors on terra firma as well as out in space on a daily basis and is projected to increase to 24TB per day as better tools come to the fore. In addition, the archives already contain 24PB (petabyte = 1,000TB) of data, projected to grow to 150PB by 2023. Within these data streams is information that has significant importance in the earth sciences, space exploration, and potential resources and threats.

Might a ‘memory’ of Covid-19 be passed down to future generations?

2020/21 will be years to remember, but could such memory go well beyond archived blog posts, and celluloid story-telling? Could ‘memory’ of the past twelve-months be directly inherited by future generations via DNA?

Prior to the pandemic, an experiment by a team of researchers at the Emory University School of Medicine, in the USA, showed that mice trained to avoid a particular smell passed their aversion on to their ‘grandchildren’. In other words, the experience of the mice prior to conceiving was essentially encoded into their DNA and made subsequent generations of mice extremely sensitive to the same smell. Or to put it another way, experience can be inherited.

Professor Marcus Pembury from UCL, in the UK, commented that the US study on mice was “highly relevant to phobias, anxiety, and PTSD disorders” and said that the study provided solid evidence that a type of memory could be passed on to future generations.

One implication here is that the current levels of anxiety related to Covid-19, especially among younger people, could linger far longer than most people might imagine.


Using AI to make dead relatives come to life. Video gravestones next? I guess this is just the start of various applications of Deep Fakes, some fun, some sinister and some dangerous. Deep Revenge Porn is probably next – totally fake videos of people having sex (makes that bit of tape across your laptop camera somewhat redundant). Thanks to Matt D as always!

Article link.