Blue-eyed humans have a single, common ancestor

Blue-eyed humans have a single, common ancestor

New research shows that people with blue eyes have a single, common ancestor. A team at the University of Copenhagen have tracked down a genetic mutation which took place 6-10,000 years ago and is the cause of the eye colour of all blue-eyed humans alive on the planet today.

“Originally, we all had brown eyes”, said Professor Eiberg from the Department of Cellular and Molecular Biology. “But a genetic mutation affecting the OCA2 gene in our chromosomes resulted in the creation of a “switch”, which literally “turned off” the ability to produce brown eyes”.

Variation in the colour of the eyes from brown to green can all be explained by the amount of melanin in the iris, but blue-eyed individuals only have a small degree of variation in the amount of melanin in their eyes. “From this we can conclude that all blue-eyed individuals are linked to the same ancestor,” says Professor Eiberg. “They have all inherited the same switch at exactly the same spot in their DNA.” Brown-eyed individuals, by contrast, have considerable individual variation in the area of their DNA that controls melanin production.

Oh my gosh! My parents are related!!!!!!

Hat Tip: The Corner

I HATE CSV FILES!!!!!!

Whoever at Microsoft decided that a comma was a worthy choice as a delimiter for importing text files should be taken out and beaten and then shot. What was the thought process? “Hmmmm….. we need something to separate values in a text file, what’s a good choice? A pipe(|)? Nah, too common. A tilde(~)? Nah, still too common. I’ve got it! A comma. Nobody ever uses those!”

Microsoft has made a lot of stupid mistakes over the years, but this has to be the dumbest. As a result of this decision any comma used in the value of a field denotes the beginning of a new field, which often it’s not. (For example, my name commonly gets written as Paul J. Smith, Jr. If my name is stored as a single field in a comma delimited file that comma after “Smith” tells the computer a new field is started, so every field after that is off by one from its proper position, completely invalidating the file.)

One time at a previous assignment, we were developing a process to transfer data between two systems, which necessitated using a text file. The lead tech from the other system asked if we could use a pipe (|) as the delimiter in the file. My response was just “Thank you.” Pipes never appear in contemporary usage and make such a perfect delimiter. Microsoft needs to dump commas as separators and move to pipes, or just abandon the whole flat file thought process and move to XML as a go-between when a text file is required.