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Panned by Brenner

Darren Platt daz at exelixis.com
Sat Apr 6 22:33:37 PST 2002


> 
> ^ÓIt has never been spread out, yet,^Ô said Mein Herr: ^Óthe farmers objected: 
> they said it would cover the whole country, and shut out the sunlight! So we
> now use the country itself, as its own map, and I assure you it does nearly as 
> well."
> 
> Cheers,
> Fritz Roth

I think that's the right approach if you're going to join the fray on this
one, rather than rising to the insult.  There is an interesting and valid
discussion embedded within the article and that quote gets at the heart of the
dispute - classification/summary is useful, as is detailed description.

There's an interesting parallel with programming - the source code is the only
true description of function but that doesn't stop us giving names to
functions that try to summarise their utility (sometimes to disasterous effect
when code doesn't work as advertised).  I think Brenner is making a useful
point that there might be a better language for describing function somewhere
between glucose-kinase and MDRELNGAMKSVSINSAQLNGHNNGGGLDETDRVGVA...

-- 
Darren Platt
Group Leader Computational Target Discovery
Exelixis, Inc.                           main   (650) 837-7000
170 Harbor Way, P.O. Box 511             direct (650) 837-8213
South San Francisco, CA, 94083-0511      fax    (650) 837-8122

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