An MIT researcher managed to create a primitive screen using E. coli bacteria. Like many geeks in front of a very basic electronic device, she asked the cult question: will the game Doom run on it? The answer is yes, provided you are patient…
This will also interest you
[EN VIDÉO] Do video games have an impact on our behavior? We have long heard that violence in video games could negatively impact…
Doom, a first-person shooter released in 1993, is a reference among computer scientists. It is often used to show off the capabilities of the most unexpected electronic devices. Thus, some managed to turn it on a tractor, in MinecraftMinecraft or even on a pregnancy test. But Lauren Ramlan, a researcher from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the United States, has just achieved an unusual feat, to say the least, that of doing turn the game on cells.
She created a 32 x 48 pixel display using bacteriabacteria intestinal Escherichia coliEscherichia coli (E. coli) and capable of producing green fluorescent protein (GFPGFP). Thus, she obtained a black and white screen, where each pixel can be “turned on” by inciting the bacteria to produce the proteinprotein.
Lauren Ramlan explains how her screen works, which uses bacteria as pixels. (In English, enable automatic translation of subtitles.) © Lauren Ramlan
A very low refresh rate
However, you shouldn’t expect to have wild games. The bacteria need about 70 minutes to produce the GFP protein to turn the pixels on, and it takes another eight hours and 20 minutes to return to the initial state, in other words to turn off the pixels. Counting the average time of five hours for a full game with a normal refresh rate of 35 frames per second, it would still take 599 years to reach the end using this bacterial display.
To be absolutely clear, this is not about turning cells into a complete computer. The game code runs on a classic PC. The bacteria only serve as a screen here. This is still quite impressive.
rewrite this content and keep HTML tags