Linked by Hadrien Grasland on Tue 15th Feb 2011 09:01 UTC, submitted by sawboss
GNU, GPL, Open Source "Manu Sporny, founder and CEO of Digital Bazaar, has decided to use GitHub to store a project of a[n unusual] nature. Rather than a piece of software, he is listing his own genetic data as an open source project. He has released all his rights to the data and made around 1 million of his genetic markers public domain."
Order by: Score:
"Open source"???
by Laurence on Tue 15th Feb 2011 09:28 UTC
Laurence
Member since:
2007-03-26

I would have thought, as it is illegal to patent DNA, you couldn't "open source" it either. You could publish it, but you couldn't attach a license to the DNA - open or otherwise. Or is this guy specifically "open sourcing" the publication rather than the DNA itself?

Is anyone any wiser about this?

Reply Score: 2

RE: "Open source"???
by olefiver on Tue 15th Feb 2011 11:15 UTC in reply to ""Open source"???"
olefiver Member since:
2008-04-04

Whether it's illegal to patent DNA or not, shouldn't anything to say in regard of license or open source.
It's not patent law, it's copyright law, and seeing as it's a persons own DNA sequence I would say that he has copyright on that data and therefore can release it through a license or just drop it as public domain (as he has, if I understand geek.com correctly).

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: "Open source"???
by bogomipz on Tue 15th Feb 2011 11:27 UTC in reply to "RE: "Open source"???"
bogomipz Member since:
2005-07-11

No! It's his parents that hold the copyright on his DNA. They've just licensed it to him for the duration of one lifetime. He is allowed to distribute modified copies, though. That's usually done through a patch mechanism which is very good at merging two completely different DNA sequences. I think it uses a form of sexps [1], but I'm not sure.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexps

Reply Score: 9

RE[3]: "Open source"???
by demetrioussharpe on Tue 15th Feb 2011 15:35 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "Open source"???"
demetrioussharpe Member since:
2009-01-09

No! It's his parents that hold the copyright on his DNA. They've just licensed it to him for the duration of one lifetime. He is allowed to distribute modified copies, though. That's usually done through a patch mechanism which is very good at merging two completely different DNA sequences. I think it uses a form of sexps [1], but I'm not sure.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sexps


LOL I guess you beat me to it! ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: "Open source"???
by olefiver on Tue 15th Feb 2011 18:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "Open source"???"
olefiver Member since:
2008-04-04

Thanks for clearing that up.

Wouldn't that mean that the guy is setting himself up for a lawsuit from his parents on violation of copyright?
Assuming that the released DNA isn't modified, that is.

Edited 2011-02-15 18:43 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: "Open source"???
by demetrioussharpe on Tue 15th Feb 2011 15:34 UTC in reply to "RE: "Open source"???"
demetrioussharpe Member since:
2009-01-09

Whether it's illegal to patent DNA or not, shouldn't anything to say in regard of license or open source.
It's not patent law, it's copyright law, and seeing as it's a persons own DNA sequence I would say that he has copyright on that data and therefore can release it through a license or just drop it as public domain (as he has, if I understand geek.com correctly).


If that's the case, then if he has living parents, wouldn't they actually be the copyright holders? ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: "Open source"???
by panzi on Tue 15th Feb 2011 21:33 UTC in reply to "RE: "Open source"???"
panzi Member since:
2006-01-22

Funny thing: In Germany and Austria there is no "copyright" as such, but "Urheberrecht" (=authors right). Who would be the author of ones DNA? Your parents (50% each parent, aside from minor mutations)? But their DNA would then be fully copyrighted by their parents (apply recursively). This is a license mess!

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: "Open source"???
by reez on Tue 15th Feb 2011 23:44 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "Open source"???"
reez Member since:
2006-06-28

Funny thing: In Germany and Austria there is no "copyright" as such, but "Urheberrecht" (=authors right). Who would be the author of ones DNA?

I might be wrong, but AFAIK that's not really true. It might me an other term, but it still regulates copies (among other things).

The question about authorship is still valid, bit I think it might be handled similar to pictures (if you are the person pictured you have a number of rights), because it also pictures you in a certain way.

Edited 2011-02-15 23:48 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: "Open source"???
by bogomipz on Tue 15th Feb 2011 11:20 UTC in reply to ""Open source"???"
bogomipz Member since:
2005-07-11

He has released all his rights to the data and made around 1 million of his genetic markers public domain.


I guess it's just journalism getting lost in phrases. The article doesn't mention a license anywhere, but does mention that he made the data public domain.

Another problem with the phrase "open source" here, is that DNA is not regarded as a kind of source code... at least not yet.

Reply Score: 2

RE: "Open source"???
by Sodapop on Tue 15th Feb 2011 16:11 UTC in reply to ""Open source"???"
Sodapop Member since:
2005-07-06

It's not. Some company's already have patents on Animal DNA. It's even been said some Human Genetic material has been patented.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: "Open source"???
by Laurence on Wed 16th Feb 2011 09:34 UTC in reply to "RE: "Open source"???"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

It's not. Some company's already have patents on Animal DNA. It's even been said some Human Genetic material has been patented.

You can't patent DNA. You can only patent the process to identify or modify DNA parts.
Often that is the only way to identify or modify and thus an indirect patent on DNA is created. However you cannot directly patent DNA.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: "Open source"???
by fran on Wed 16th Feb 2011 13:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "Open source"???"
fran Member since:
2010-08-06

DNA patenting lies in a legally gray zone that is still to be sorted out by legislators and benchlaws.

http://tech.fortune.cnn.com/2010/03/30/is-the-dna-patent-dead/

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: "Open source"???
by MamiyaOtaru on Wed 16th Feb 2011 13:06 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: "Open source"???"
MamiyaOtaru Member since:
2005-11-11

in the US, you can patent isolated DNA. Or could. A federal judge has ruled against the practice, which will of course be appealed http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gene_patent

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: "Open source"???
by Laurence on Fri 18th Feb 2011 14:00 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: "Open source"???"
Laurence Member since:
2007-03-26

Maybe this is just the case in the UK.

Someone I commute with (or used to until recently) worked in this field (identifying genes rather than patent laws) and we would have long discussions about this very subject.

Reply Score: 2

Does not compile
by YEPHENAS on Tue 15th Feb 2011 09:53 UTC
YEPHENAS
Member since:
2008-07-14

It does not compile on my machine.

Reply Score: 3

Version control?
by EvaTheDog on Tue 15th Feb 2011 10:34 UTC
EvaTheDog
Member since:
2010-07-09

Why? Does he intend folk to submit patches & make changes?

Reply Score: 3

RE: Version control?
by nibor on Tue 15th Feb 2011 11:29 UTC in reply to "Version control?"
nibor Member since:
2011-01-12

Yes, see here for a serious example: https://github.com/cariaso/dna

and here for a funny one: https://github.com/msporny/dna/pull/1

Edited 2011-02-15 11:29 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: Version control?
by bitwelder on Tue 15th Feb 2011 13:36 UTC in reply to "Version control?"
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

Should anybody submitting patches being called eugenetist ?

Reply Score: 1

Not suitable topic for OS News -- or is it?
by Louis B on Tue 15th Feb 2011 12:36 UTC
Louis B
Member since:
2009-02-17

I was about to joke that is not a suitable topic for OS News. But then thinking about it perhaps it is -- instructions to build the most advanced OS on the planet -- the human brain.

Reply Score: 1

Neolander Member since:
2010-03-08

More or less what I thought when linking this ;) This is the Assembly source of a human being and its operating system, you nonbeliever !

Edited 2011-02-15 12:52 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Comment by OSbunny
by OSbunny on Tue 15th Feb 2011 15:23 UTC
OSbunny
Member since:
2009-05-23

He does have a serious reason for releasing this data. He wants to encourage the development of "good Open Source software for genomics research".

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by OSbunny
by sbergman27 on Tue 15th Feb 2011 19:56 UTC in reply to "Comment by OSbunny"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Seems to me that releasing your genetic data to the public is opening yourself up for a future grief. All of us have genes, or combinations, which may or may not increase our susceptibility to various horrible ends. And the pool of things which we *don't* know for sure about genetic risk is far larger than the pool of things which we *are* sure about. Which doesn't dissuade the armchair experts from chipping in "what they know". There are plenty of people out there with just enough knowledge to point you to "evidence" that a few of your gene sequences make you an Alzheimer's candidate.

Of course, each claim is just one small study. Or perhaps they just "heard it from a credible source".

You know that it doesn't mean a thing. But still, you can't help but wonder. No. This is silly!

But then, before you know it, you're in your 40s. (Like me.) And it seems to you that you are forgetting things more often. You're really not, of course. But there's a lot more to have forgotten now. All the way back to your first pet... which seems like only yesterday... but how long was his tail? Was it bobbed? Or not? Am I confusing Dannyboy with Hattie? And where did I put my reading glasses, anyway? (Can't believe I need those, already!)

And still... you remember those emails from long ago about those questionable genes. Could it be? No. That's just silly. Right?

And then you get to be in your 50s, and...

You get the picture.

I've not had my genome taken. And I don't intend to. For the same reason, I've never done tatoos. You just don't know how its going to turn out 10 to 30 years from now.

Sometimes, ignorance allows for a higher quality life, even if the data *might* (or might not) have had a chance of extending the duration.

I guess I take a proactive approach to "fear spam".

-Steve

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by OSbunny
by Soulbender on Wed 16th Feb 2011 19:06 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by OSbunny"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Starting to post on osnews again is a sure sign of senility, my good man.

Reply Score: 2

Viruses !
by oinet on Tue 15th Feb 2011 18:49 UTC
oinet
Member since:
2010-03-23

.

Reply Score: 1

Dear Mr. Many
by fran on Wed 16th Feb 2011 01:10 UTC
fran
Member since:
2010-08-06

Dear Mr. Many
We have evaluated your code and found 24 critical bugs.
The bugfixes or (cure you might say) is unfortunately not published under general GPL and will be available at your nearest pharmacy in about 30 years after it passed the FDA and general ethics lobby regarding genetic manipulation

Sorry for the inconvenience. We suggest you cut out all dairy and gluten products for the time being.
;-)

Reply Score: 2

oblig: git clone?
by shawnlower on Wed 16th Feb 2011 15:40 UTC
shawnlower
Member since:
2011-02-16

Or, rather:

$ git clone
$ git-merge
$ git-buildpackage

?

Sex is for the birds...

Reply Score: 1

Fork it.
by lighans on Thu 17th Feb 2011 12:49 UTC
lighans
Member since:
2006-01-14

I read it and didn't like it at all.

I'm planning to fork it. ;)

Reply Score: 1