How Box Scores Are Like Gene Sequences: The Geek Path from Baseball to Bio

How is a box score like a genome sequence? This starts a wee slow, but go with it: Noted computational biologists James Fraser (UCSF) and Michael Eisen (Berkeley) explain how obsessions with baseball stats led them — and can lead others — to be data-heavy biologists. First lesson, for example: Predictions are stronger based on (open) data. This takes theminto  good stuff like “How many home runs will Dustin Pedroia hit in 2012?” My only beef there: Fraser has to glance at a cheat sheet to recall home run records of several slugging second-basemen. I’ll cut him some slack: He’s been busy with biology, plus a Blue Jay fan would probably suppress memory of Chuck Knoblach anyway.

So who’s going to write a dissertation on the role baseball plays in creating America’s strength in biology?

Add some rotisserie, stuff like this could get you through the winter.

From UCSF’s iBioMagazine. H/t to Jonathan Eisen (Michael’s brother, and also a biologist), who marked it as his Tree of Life.