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Doc Bushwell Joins the Anti-omics Brigade

Dr. Joan Bushwell (not her real name) has hurled some poo at the -omicists. You know, those people who attach -omics to everything and act like they’ve come up with a brand new research discipline. I imagine them making the “guitar player changing chords” face (go to 1:09 in this video) when they coin a new “ome”.

As one last hurrah for omeomics, Doc Bushwell coined the meme-ome. That would be a collection of all the memes floating around the blogosphere. Or is it all memes everywhere? Who knows? But it is the perfect congruence of two terms that have worn out there welcome.

And systems biologists, don’t think you’re immune from the criticism. We all know you’re just computer scientists who think they’ve invented physiology.

P.S. I posted this in the Philosophy of Science category because, well, I can.

Comments

  1. #1 Amit
    November 30, 2006


    And systems biologists, don’t think you’re immune from the criticism. We all know you’re just computer scientists who think they’ve invented physiology.

    I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way sometimes about systems biology…

  2. #2 SMC
    November 30, 2006

    Somebody needs to write up all the “-omics” topics into a book, so I can add it to my bibliome.

  3. #3 Doc Bushwell
    December 1, 2006

    I imagine them making the “guitar player changing chords” face (go to 1:09 in this video) when they coin a new “ome”.

    Oh, that’s an excellent illustration! Another winceworthy term is chemogenomics, coined by some former colleagues. They were tumescent for days after coming up with that one.

  4. #4 Brian X
    December 1, 2006

    Actually, I think an AI guy named Doug Lenat (and possibly some random Discordian as well) gets credit for the word “memome”. It does sound rather silly though.

  5. #5 postblogger
    December 2, 2006

    Well, at the risk of being a more than usually shameless blogwhore, I wrote an article earlier this year moaning about systems biology. Well, moaning about its overhyping, really. It’s short, but you’ll need a subscription…

  6. #6 Jong Bhak
    December 25, 2006

    In 1994-5, when there were less than 100 bioinformatists in th world(really!), we have felt that bioinformatics, proteomics, transcriptomics etc were too much and felt it was only for self-serving ego and taking another piece of research fund.
    In 1998, when I first had ‘systems biology’ seminar in UK, I thought, it was exactly what I was doing: bioinformatics.
    I now think omics is useful in many places. If we object to omics, we should object to many words such as nano-xx, etc. We are in systems/commplexity era.

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