Archivio per dicembre 2007

Children, believe Santa Claus! The scientific explanation of his existence :-)

dicembre 25, 2007

I would like to leave the main themes of this blog for a while to send you my heartfelt greetings of a merry Christmas! In this joyful day I would like to post a beautiful answer appeared on Reasonable Deviations. Here it is why children should believe Santa Claus…and it is a strict theoretical explanation having its basis on quantum physics!

I have recently received a number of distinctly unfestive emails pointing out the impossibility of Santa Claus delivering presents to all the children in the world in just one night. We are all aware of the flaws in the conventional Santa Claus theory, but seem to accept it quite readily. Children are not quite so gullible and require a more rigorous proof of his existence. The answer to this problem lies in quantum theory.

Consider this: On Christmas night, Santa is in a superposition of quantum states, smeared out all the way around the planet, and each quantum state delivers presents to a single child. This explains why is is so important that children are asleep, because if just one child sees Santa, he immediately collapses into a single state, in accordance with Heisenberg. This would mean that no other children would receive presents that Christmas. This theory elegantly avoids all the flaws in the conventional theory. The only problem is that you will have to explain quantum theory to your children before you tell them about Santa.

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The Maceratini prize is mine!

dicembre 16, 2007

Yesterday the board of the AITIM 2007 conference found in me the recipient of the “Maceratini Prize”. I’m very proud of this even because of the meaning of this prize. Dr. Maceratini was one of the pioneers of Telemedicine and Medical Informatics in Italy. I would like to thank the people that supported me in these hard times and, of course, my tutors: Prof. Bevilacqua, Prof. Campana and Prof. Mastronardi.

Thank you all!

A primer for Python in life sciences

dicembre 2, 2007

PLoS Computational Biology has just published an interesting primer for people approaching the “wonderful world” of Python in life sciences. Here it is the paper: http://compbiol.plosjournals.org/perlserv/?request=get-pdf&file=10.1371_journal.pcbi.0030199-L.pdf

This is author’s introduction to the paper:

“The purpose of this tutorial is to provide a bird’s-eye view of the Python language, showing the basics of the language and the capabilities it offers. Main data structures and flow control statements are presented. After these basic concepts, topics such as file access, functions, and modules are covered in more detail. Finally, Biopython, a collection of tools for computational molecular biology, is introduced and its use shown with two scripts. For more advanced topics in Python, there are references at the end.

Enjoy!

Ten Simple Rules for…Graduate Students

dicembre 1, 2007

Here it is another paper in the series of “Ten simple rules” by Bourne and colleagues. Today is the time of Graduate Students.

Take a look at the paper!

http://compbiol.plosjournals.org/perlserv/?request=get-pdf&file=10.1371_journal.pcbi.0030229-S.pdf