Frank Swain's article on the New Scientist website (see last week's note) appears to have attracted quite a lot of notice, although I'm not entirely sure that the Tokyo team's preliminary results justify the media attention. The idea of distributing a computation across a population of bacteria using targetted information exchange (as opposed to a more general, untargetted chemical signal) is certainly novel, and is one we've been actively pursuing over the last year with BACTOCOM. My small appearance as a commentator has led to some interest from various parties, none of which I'll expand on now, since it's all still very tenuous. Still, it's nice that this sort of research is gaining the sort of attention that I think it needs.
Work pressures meant that I resigned today as a founder Director of ArcSpace, the Community Interest Company I joined a year-and-a-bit ago. The organisation's growing quite quickly right now, and I think it's time to stand aside and let someone else have a go. Although there'll be some tough times ahead in the sector, they have access to the best possible resource - committed, passionate individuals - and I wish them well.
Finally, some words of support to my friends Rob and Nadine, who are going through a tough time with their son, Keifer, right now. As Rob said, "Joy comes in small doses", and a sick child immediately puts into perspective the trivialities of everyday life. The Ashby-Amos clan send their love.