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Wednesday, April 21, 2004

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"As Randal Bryant takes over as dean of the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University, one of the country's most prestigious IT training grounds, he might have to consider something his predecessors spent very little time worrying about: recruiting students."

"The computer-science school also needs to figure out how best to work with other departments, which increasingly see their futures tied to computer technology. The clearest example is the biology department, which five years ago approached the computer-science school about closer collaboration and started hiring computer-science Ph.D.s. Why? It recognizes that future discoveries in areas such as genomics will rely on computational biology.

But Bryant says the effect also will increasingly work the other way: Computer scientists will need to think like biologists to work in more-dynamic, less-stable network and data environments. "The interesting part is, biology will start driving a lot of computer science," he says."

[ rhetoric ]

Bioinformatics will be at the core of biology in the 21st century. In fields ranging from structural biology to genomics to biomedical imaging, ready access to data and analytical tools are fundamentally changing the way investigators in the life sciences conduct research and approach problems. Complex, computationally intensive biological problems are now being addressed and promise to significantly advance our understanding of biology and medicine. No biological discipline will be unaffected by these technological breakthroughs.


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