Synthetic Biology (SynBio)
"Synthetic biology" is defined as the design and construction of new biological functions and systems not found in nature.
As with genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on Earth, there is strong resistance to synthetic biology as well, including some very good reasons, generally categorized as biosafety and biosecurity.
As usual, there are many scientists and public proponents of synthetic biology, hoping for benefits to themselves. Unfortunately, many people tend to focus on the benefits and rationalize away the risks.
However, in outer space, these experiments can be isolated so there is practically no chance of the results affecting Earth's biosphere. Indeed, since it is not feasible to regulate laboratories all over the planet, if we could move a lot of this work to outer space, then we would be eliminating the effects of these experiments on Earth's natural environment.
NASA Synthetic Biology Program
NASA has started research in this field for various potential purposes, including manufacturing food more efficiently in space, trash/waste processing, and producing products from lunar and asteroidal raw materials, such as producing hydrocarbon fuels, extracting metals, and other things.
More information can be found at syntheticbiology.arc.nasa.gov which is very small as of 2012.
An oft-cited reference is a 2010 workshop entitled What are the Potential Roles for Synthetic Biology in NASA’s Mission?
Singularity University's Synthetic Biology Program
In February 2012, the Singularity University announced the SynBio Startup Launchpad, noting "Get ready for a paradigm shift in biotechnology! Not too long ago, it took millions of dollars and years of development to start a new technology business. But not anymore, as many tech startups get up and running in weeks for under $20K. Biotechnology is poised to follow this trend powered by synthetic biology – genetic engineering done with software-based design tools coupled with low-cost DNA synthesis and assembly. Using synthetic biology, undergraduate students are developing everything from DNA data storage systems to new ... gene therapies in just months ..."
The Singularity University's website quotes the founder of 3Com corporation, Bob Metcalfe, as saying "Be prepared to learn how the growth of exponential and disruptive technologies will impact your industry, your company, your career, and your life." This applies to life in general in Earth's biosphere.
These "disruptive" technologies should be developed far out into space, not in Earth's biosphere. However, countless curious people will dream about all the benefits and money they will make, while rationalizing away the risks.
PERMANENT.com > Human Extinction, Bio and Nano Tech > Synthetic Biology
PERMANENT needs a PHP / MySQL (actually, MariaDB) programmer. Are you a PHP / MySQL programmer interested in getting into space development as a career, or already working in space development? Or do you know somebody else who might be interested?
There is an ongoing process to update this website in 2019 with a target relaunch in 2020.
This website is actually very out of date. Much of the website text content was written in the 1980s to early 2000s, but that's a different matter. As regards PHP / MySQL, some offline databases go into the 2010s, as regards professional publications, engineers, companies, etc., and this is what we need programming help with. We are updating our databases on people, organizations, publications, and other things, for open source space development for all.
The current status is we have some working databases which we have been using internally for a long time for organizing professional publications, and to track people (authors, R&D people, other professionals, quality volunteers, journalists, etc.) and organizations. We want to put information online for the general public pending a security review of the programming code.
Step 1 is fixing some bugs in what we already have, the PHP code. It is functional, and been used a long time, but there are some bugs.
Step 2 will be improving the system. Some small improvements would help its usability.
Step 3 will be a security check for putting it online for the general public to be able to access and use, but with reasonable protection against hackers.
After Step 3, the main mission is accomplished, as regards PHP / MySQL, though of course we hope to keep people engaged and happy, and the sky's not the limit.
This is a volunteer, unpaid role at this point in time. A limited paid role would be considered on a tight budget, such as for at least bug fixing with some minor improvements, and/or a security review of our code before it goes online publicly. If you or one of your friends or associates may be interested, please send an email to spaceprogrammer at ... of course this domain.
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