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aurora
midbrain


To ladidadaddadad(etc...) :-):

heh, although I'm not sure it connects with the quote (at least not the way I grasped it) I think it's a facinating piece of trivia...
I'm curious to know - are there exact definitions for when a system is defined as a "living organism"? Obviously, all plants have influence on each other in a forest, but they are not reffered to (in my humble opinion) as a living organism, right? Predators, harbivores.... they all effect each other, and they are not reffered to as a living organism(altogether, as a system...).
Some systems must have a more strict policy of maitaining themselves, but where is the limit? For us it seems obvious that our body is a living organism, mostly because intuitively we feel as "one" system, and that from above, we see all our cells and what not functioning in this amazing way... But on a microscopic level (or even an atomic level!), I think the system looks much more chaotic, unorganized... If I were a spinning electron around a proton (or, most probably, an electron function-wave describing the electron's probabilty to be spotted in certain points in space, for you physicians!), I doubt I would notice I'm a part of a big, living organism. Moreover - if I were a cell - a single cell out of the billions there are - I would probably feel the same - and we reffer to a cell as living!
Of course, what I'm trying to hint is that, I've heard many comparisons being made about planet Earth functioning like a living organism. Also corals, which are actually just rocks (is this right?) serving as the habitat for millions (more? less) of microbs (or something) - is reffered to as living (wrong again?)
What biological distinct feature makes us - Men -  so different than this solid planet Earth?
What if we learned to split Earth? :-) Would it be considered living then?

I just wonder, why is this mycorrhizae (is that a word?!) suddenly looked at as a living organism...
Thanks, and I really have lousy background in biology, so forgive me for assuming things that are perhaps incorrect... just from random conversations and reading.
Tomer.

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There's definitely definitely definitely no logic to humen behaviour.

Total Posts: 279 | Joined Aug. 2007 | Posted on: 5:15 am on Dec. 17, 2008 | Link to this post
ladidada
hindbrain



Wow, you really thought that through, my head might explode if I try to comprehend all of that.

But um, the main reasons mycorrhizae is usually referred to as a "single living organism" is because if the two lived separately apart, they would either not be able to live at all, or would be severely stunted in growth. Although everybody knows plants take in and use Carbon from the air, plant roots themselves do not take in nutrients, just the very tiny roothairs found on the roots and they do not have much reach. So most plants work with fungi which grow all over the place to pick up heavy solid nutrients (Nitrogen, Potassium and Phosphorus the stuff in fertilizers). The plant then rewards the fungi help by giving them some of the sugar it makes and everybody is happy. (Fungi cannot make their own food...so without this sugar source they would DIE.)

Over 97% of all plants form mycorrhizal connections with fungi and the symbiosis is so old that even the seeds are cover in mycorrhizae fungi. Seeds without them have less than a 4 percent chance of survival.

But I agree, even though I think of myself as one system, I wouldn't be able to live without the e-coli in my digestive system and such. One of the first thing my mycology teacher told us was "The only difference between you and a pile of dirt is the arrangement of your atoms."


(Edited by ladidada at 1:16 pm on Dec. 17, 2008)

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:-D

Total Posts: 130 | Joined Nov. 2008 | Posted on: 1:14 pm on Dec. 17, 2008 | Link to this post
Krss
admin



I think a living organism is defined by the life functions it literally performs (respiration, nutrition, reproduction, etc). I found this ppt in all caps that says the same.:tongue: Calling Earth a living organism sounds more like a metaphor.

Also corals are alive, the rocky reefs are the skeletons of the dead ones.

Total Posts: 2307 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 7:14 pm on Dec. 17, 2008 | Link to this post
r
flatliner



well.. i think saying where a "living organism" starts and where it ends is quite arbitrary.

let's go by the rule where a living organism is "defined by the life functions it literally performs (respiration, nutrition, reproduction)".. many of our specialized cells, if placed in favorable conditions, do perform these functions independently, strive and can form "tissue cultures". are those cells living organisms? i'd say yes. living organisms, that usually live in highly organized systems resulting in another, higher type of living organism (a human, for example). but let's go further.. do we count in all the other genetically unrelated living organisms that colonize the human body (as ladidada already mentioned) and in end result function as an integrated unit? where to draw the line? who decides?

we could restrict it down genetically and say that every separate multicellular living organism can be traced back to a single cell. in that case monozygotic twins would be a single living organism, too.

it's probably even more complicated in the kingdom of plants. as far as i know, the majority of plants parttake in some form of close fungal symbiosis (mycorrhiza). it's almost a rule. then we have the whole world of lichen, that to our eyes appear as a single living organism, yet they are a form of close obligatory fungus/alga or fungus/bacteria symbiosis. in addition how do you count lichen as they exhibit a rather primitive anatomy? do we count them in patches where each patch is a separate organism?

Total Posts: 491 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 10:58 pm on Dec. 18, 2008 | Link to this post
ladidada
hindbrain



When it comes to biology there is an exception to every rule...even the rule of what is considered life.

Easier to grasp: All plants photosynthesis? Right?
Mistletoe and Dodder are both plants that do not photosynthesize or make their own food. They are parasites that leach off of other plants.

Harder to grasp: Why do mitochondria have chromosomes?
We store our genetic information from within the chromosomes of our Nuclei... so why do our mitochondria also have chromosomes...and IT'S OWN SET OF GENES? Because when Eubacteria first started evolving from archaebacteria, large giant single cell organisms started "eating" smaller single cell organisms...and some of these smaller single cell organisms survived inside the larger ones and overtime DE-EVOLVED from a living organisms in order to EVOLVE to a more beneficial "unit" aka our mitochondria as an example. Mitochondria are the remnants of a bacteria that was once a living organisms that no longer is.

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:-D

Total Posts: 130 | Joined Nov. 2008 | Posted on: 1:38 pm on Dec. 19, 2008 | Link to this post
r
flatliner



i've always found that theory fascinating.. :)

Total Posts: 491 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 8:55 pm on Dec. 19, 2008 | Link to this post
ladidada
hindbrain



"Advice is free, Alexander. Making use of it costs much more!" -Ali the bookshop owner/King Quest VI

Also, this is one of my favorite things to post in forums,

"You are here because the outside world rejects you" - Shredder from the Teenager Mutant Ninja Turtle movie:biggrin:

boy, you should see the responses you'd get if you don't put that in quotes and say where it's from.





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:-D

Total Posts: 130 | Joined Nov. 2008 | Posted on: 8:28 pm on Dec. 30, 2008 | Link to this post
Krss
admin



Oh noes I've been insulted!!

:tongue:

Total Posts: 2307 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 11:51 pm on Dec. 30, 2008 | Link to this post
Thaumaturge
Recurring Arch-Villain



Ooh, I'm glad that such a thread exists - I had thought about starting one such elsewhere previously, but hadn't gotten around to it...

Thank you for this thread, Krss! ^_^

I have a great many quotes that I would like to mention, I believe; rather than post them all, I'll post a few at a time, I think.

So, to start:

"L-l-look at you Hacker, a p-p- pathetic creature of meat and bone, panting and sweating as you r-run through my corridors.  Ho-ho-how can you challenge a perfect, immortal machiiine...?" - SHODAN; System Shock   (My transcription may well be a little off in a few particulars)

"Welcome to my DEATH MACHINE, interloper!" - SHODAN; System Shock (courtesy of Wikiquote)

THE CAKE IS A LIE! - A previous experimentee (presumed on my part); Portal  (I know that it's rather old on the 'net now, but I do like that line.)

"You will be baked, and then there will be cake." - GLaDOS; Portal (I hope that I recall that correctly.)

"Two plus Two equals ten... IN BASE FOUR, I'M FINE!!! [laughs]." - GLaDOS; Portal (Courtesy of Wikiquote, I think).

(Admittedly, GLaDOS has so many - she's wonderfully written, I think.)

Don't worry, not all of my quotes are game-related - I have a number from books, and, once I get around to finding them, I think that I'll have some from music as well. :wink:

(Edited by Thaumaturge at 1:55 am on Dec. 31, 2008)

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... World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams: ...

Total Posts: 82 | Joined Dec. 2008 | Posted on: 11:53 pm on Dec. 30, 2008 | Link to this post
r
flatliner



since i have no idea who Shodan is i imagine he/she/it's a computer.. just because a stuttering computer sounds cool.. :))
i once read of a lisping AI. :)

Total Posts: 491 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 12:05 am on Dec. 31, 2008 | Link to this post
Thaumaturge
Recurring Arch-Villain



Heh, you are in fact correct - SHODAN (all caps, if I'm not much mistaken) is the primary antagonist of the System Shock games, and is a megalomaniacal AI who has decided that she is a "god".

Note that the above-linked page seems to have a sound clip of the "Look at you hacker" quote that I gave (and which I have as my current ringtone). :wink:

In case you missed Portal, I'll add for clarity's sake that GLaDOS is also a megalomaniacal AI, the antagonist of the aforementioned game.

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... World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams: ...

Total Posts: 82 | Joined Dec. 2008 | Posted on: 12:22 am on Dec. 31, 2008 | Link to this post
r
flatliner



aah, cyberpunkish action-adventures.

funny how they thought 'Matrix' was so inventive. i loved it because it didn't have one original idea, but what it borrowed it did put together so cleverly..

Total Posts: 491 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 1:34 am on Dec. 31, 2008 | Link to this post
Thaumaturge
Recurring Arch-Villain



Well, one might argue, I think, that creativity is in general not the creation of ideas ex nihilo, but rather the novel use of pre-existing elements... :wink:

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... World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams: ...

Total Posts: 82 | Joined Dec. 2008 | Posted on: 1:47 am on Dec. 31, 2008 | Link to this post
r
flatliner



'Matrix' sure could be the poster boy of that concept.. :)

Total Posts: 491 | Joined Aug. 2006 | Posted on: 1:53 am on Dec. 31, 2008 | Link to this post
MadTapeMan
A legend in my own mind



"Blast!  If I knew they wanted our little city this badly, I might have suggested we give it to them.  But then they'd have to deal with my lady, and I just can't find it in myself to wish that on my enemy.  Yup, best they die instead."

"One of the serious problems in planning the fight against American doctrine, is that the Americans do not read their manuals."

"I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And I can picture us attacking that world, because they'd never expect it."

"Always remember to pillage BEFORE you burn."

"We have women in the military, but they don't put us in the front lines. They don't know if we can fight or if we can kill. I think we can. All the general has to do is walk over to the women and say, "You see the enemy over there? They say you look fat in those uniforms."

Pretty much everything Winston Churchill ever said.

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The Mad Tape Man stikes again!

Total Posts: 468 | Joined Nov. 2006 | Posted on: 4:59 am on Feb. 12, 2009 | Link to this post
wich
Crazed Monkey



Fashion is usually a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have
to alter it every six months. -- Oscar Wilde


The computer industry is the only industry that is more fashion-driven
than women's fashion. -- Richard M. Stallman

Total Posts: 140 | Joined April 2008 | Posted on: 1:59 pm on April 7, 2009 | Link to this post
wich
Crazed Monkey



"Light travels faster than sound - isn't that why some people appear bright until you hear them speak" -- Steven Wright

Total Posts: 140 | Joined April 2008 | Posted on: 8:00 am on May 21, 2009 | Link to this post
MadTapeMan
A legend in my own mind



"If a zombie bites you, you become a zombie. If you bite a zombie, you immediately go to metal heaven where you spend eternity playing flaming guitars with Jimi Hendrix and Prince."

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The Mad Tape Man stikes again!

Total Posts: 468 | Joined Nov. 2006 | Posted on: 5:07 am on Aug. 21, 2009 | Link to this post
MadTapeMan
A legend in my own mind



"I have a western style bath robe I wear at night, with moccasin slippers, a Ted Nugent cowboy hat and I strap my glock on the bathrobe ties and walk around the house.  Excersing your 2nd Ammendment right is only one part of the equation, psyhological warfare is also a must in any home defense situation."

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The Mad Tape Man stikes again!

Total Posts: 468 | Joined Nov. 2006 | Posted on: 1:32 pm on Jan. 3, 2010 | Link to this post
MadTapeMan
A legend in my own mind



"Scotch is crap and for Picts and other Barbarian sorts. Anything that is an "acquired taste" really means 'try this it sucks'. And if you can bear it, you're a Pict too."

(Edited by MadTapeMan at 6:19 am on Feb. 8, 2010)

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The Mad Tape Man stikes again!

Total Posts: 468 | Joined Nov. 2006 | Posted on: 12:19 pm on Feb. 8, 2010 | Link to this post
 

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