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Introduction to Biology - The Secret of Life

edX · Massachusetts Institute of Technology · 2 HN citations

Explore the secret of life through the basics of biochemistry, genetics, molecular biology, recombinant DNA, genomics and rational medicine.

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Hacker News Comments about Introduction to Biology - The Secret of Life

All the comments and stories posted to Hacker News that reference this course.
Nov 30, 2018 ArtWomb on Ask HN: What is the best online course you've ever taken?
Definitely Eric Lander's Introduction to Biology - The Secret Of Life class (MITx 7.00x)

Firm grounding in the Central Dogma. Covers the entire history of genetics. From Gregor Mendel's peas. To Morgenstern's Fruit Fly Lab. And right up to the present day Supreme Court BRCA case and CRISPR/Cas9. Essential background for understanding the coming century of New Biotech.

https://www.edx.org/course/introduction-to-biology-the-secre...

Jun 16, 2018 ItsMe000001 on Interview with Freeman Dyson
Before I start: My comment is not about the person, I don't know anything about him, only about one specific section in the linked article. Also, I'm making this a question rather than a strong opinionated statement, because I am in no position to provide the latter. That means I'm ready to stand corrected and post my observation for discussion.

I skipped to where I thought I see something about something "sciency", and I found the section when you skip to

> Just to clarify here for our readers, obviously, you’re poking holes in Darwin’s Theory of Evolution but you’re saying it only tells the story up to a certain point...

I don't understand what he is talking about. I mean, where is that "controversy"? I can only see what's in that article, I don't know what else he may have said or written elsewhere. I only took biology classes on edX the last few years (the most important one was [0]), and nothing he says in that section is "controversial". Genetic drift and small populations are part of the teaching, if you go to edX's course "Nature, in Code: Biology in JavaScript" [1] you even get to simulate just that numerically, population bottlenecks, genetic drift, and more. I recognize everything he said from the courses I took, or from lecture videos on Youtube (by biologists and geneticists, specifically, e.g. this one: [2] - very funny guy too).

Going only by what I see in that article, in that section, I can only assume he is making a mistake in declaring some imagined and made-up "controversy" where none exists.

What am I missing?

To me his statements are like somebody trying to defend their "controversial" point of view that the earth is on a course around the sun, making very defensive statements because they think , for whatever reason, they are saying something incredibly controversial.

[0] https://www.edx.org/course/introduction-biology-secret-life-...

[1] https://www.edx.org/course/nature-code-biology-javascript-ep...

[2] https://www.gresham.ac.uk/professors-and-speakers/professor-...

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