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December 10, 1999 - Image 2

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-12-10

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2 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, December 10, 1999


Emergency response team

continued from Page 1
through Jan. 4, ends.
Thiele said command center employ-
es will be compensated for their over-
ime. Thiele said the decision to deacti-
vate the command center functions
Belongs to Bess and Chief Information
Officer Jose-Marie Griffiths.
Earlier this week more than 100
University staff and faculty met to run a
able-top scenario of worst case situa-
ions, which were created by
Architecture and Urban Planning Prof.
Jim Snyder, Education graduate student
\Aoira Zellner and Architecture and
Urban Planning student Charlie Kaylor.
Kaylor said the teams were presented
with challenges such as inclement
weather conditions, which could

'U for Y2K rollover

prompt building evacuations and severe
auto accidents which would challenge
the University Hospitals.
Kaylor said the teams responded with
"utmost competence" in handling the
But the test drills also identified
areas that need refinement.
"It wasn't perfect," Griffiths said,
adding that she appreciated finding a
few areas that needed tweaking.
"If it were perfect it vould make us
complacent," she said.
Thiele said one area that needed
minor improvement was the communi-
cation flow from the center's executive
board to the University's operators who
will be commanding the 1-877-
UMY2KOK hotline.
Thiele said a smaller meeting is
planned for Thursday to test out some

of the communication equipment.
Bess said the test-run was very
encouraging because it was evident that
staff members were "communicating,
cooperating and collaborating."
In addition to the command center, the
University also plans to eliminate the
Medical and Central campus' reliance on
Detroit Edison for power by disconnect-
ing from the company on Dec. 30 and
running on its own generators. The
University's connection with Detroit
Edison will be re-established when offi-
cials have determined that it is safe to
receive power from an outside source.
Thiele recommends students visit the
University's Y2K Website
wwwyeatr2000.umich.edu for a checklist
of precautions including having their M-
Card on them at all times and deleting as
many e-mail messages as possible.

Continued from Page 1
part in the program.
Watson said he strongly disagrees
with the school's approach, adding
that "some schools think study abroad
should be based in one country, but
they are simply misinformed."
Many smaller schools also may dis-
courage students from joining the pro-
gram, Watson said, because it could
create a loss in tuition.
"Its a shame," said Johns Hopkins
senior Fred Seguritan, who took part in
the fall '98 trip. "They don't think it's
academic enough. They think it's just a
"Really, it was the best learning
experience of my life," Seguritan said.
"I felt I understood enough of the cul-
ture of each country in five days."
LSA senior Jennifer McGivern also
spent the fall '98 semester aboard the
S.S. Universe Explorer. "A lot of kids
did screw off and party all the time,"
McGivern said.
"I definitely don't think the classes
are as rigorous as here, but it depends
on what you made of it, said
McGivern. "It just makes sense to
study Hindu Art when you're traveling
to India."
But, Engineering senior Derek
Sloane stressed the trip's cultural - not
academic - impact.
"It was one of the best things I've
ever done in my life," said Sloane, who
attended the program along with
"All the countries we went to, all the
things we saw, really opened my eyes,"
Sloane said.

Number of genes alter definition of'life'
WASHINGTON - A team of geneticists has come close to determining the min-
imum number of genes required for life to arise, an advance that could ultimately
allow scientists to design and create living organisms completely from scratch.
Tired of waiting for philosophers to answer the question "What is life?" the
researchers took a scientific approach and concluded that about 300 genes
needed for a candidate life form to pass for "alive" - a state generally defined
an ability to reproduce and respond to the environment.
The discovery of what appears to be the simplest recipe for making a living
thing, described in yesterday's issue of the journal Science, could shed new light
on the origins of life and the myriad ways that biology has cooked itself up since
evolution first stirred the primordial soup.
But of greater interest to ethicists, who have been tracking the so-called Minimal
Genome Project since its inception two years ago, the new research may enable
researchers to engineer life in the laboratory for the first time from essential chemi-
cal ingredients - not by altering existing organisms, as genetic engineers do today
That ability could be liberating or could sow seeds of destruction, said J. Craig
Venter of Celera Genomics in Rockville, Md., the senior scientist on the new report,
Novel cells could be designed to clean up toxic wastes with unprecedented efficienc
he said. Or they could be programmed to serve as horrendous biological weapons.

terms. removal.
Although as part of the settlement Herron said he felt it was important
"ontinued from Page 1 the University admits no wrongdo- not to lose sight of this aspect of the set-
'The settlement also mandates a pro- ing, LSA Dean Shirley Neuman sent tlement.
:edure by which Cloyd can request a a letter to Cloyd in which she apol- "Litigation is generally regarded as a
eaching assistant and allows Cloyd to ogized on behalf of the University chase for money ... but here, this is
not teach any courses during the winter for the conditions of Cloyd's clearly not the case;" he said.

Ceremoy hnors 6
slain firefghters
0, Mess. - With six shiny yellow
fire helmets placed at the stage of a
packed concert arena, six firefighters
who died in a warehouse blaze were
honored as fallen heroes yesterday by
thousands of their brethren from
around the world.
"Most cities have one hero. The city
of Worcester was blessed with six"
said Frank Raffa, president of the local
firefighters union, quoting a handwrit-
ten sign along the procession route.
To the mournful sounds of drum taps
and bagpipes, a three-mile stream of
30,000 firefighters marched solemnly
through the city, past flag-waving
crowds and the stations where the six
men were assigned, en route to the two-
hour memorial service. Many mourn-
ers couldn't get past the doors of the
15,000-seat Worcester Centrum,
Schools, municipal offices and most
businesses in this blue-collar city of
170,000 were closed for one of the
biggest firefighter memorials the country

has ever seen. President Clinton and Vice
President Al Gore were among the guests
at the ceremony, 30 miles west of Boston.
On tables right in front of the stage,
the fire helmets were placed next to pho-
tographs of the firefighters - Joseph
McGuirk, 38; James Lyons 111, 34; L*
Thomas Spencer, 42; Timothy. Jackson
51; Paul Brotherton, 41; and Jeremiah
Lucey, 38.
Scientists grow
corneas in laboratory
WASHINGTON - Scientists for
the first time have grown human
corneas in a laboratory, a major step
that could help replace controversia
chemical testing on animals' eyes an
perhaps one day even develop a supply
of artificial corneas for patients who
need eye surgery.
"They show the same function as
a real human cornea" in laboratory
tests, said lead researcher May
Griffith of the University of Ottawa,
who reports her discovery in today's
edition of the journal Science.


Yeltsin signs mity
pact with Belarus
MOSCOW - Further distancing
himself from the West as pivotal elec-
tions approach, Russian President
Boris Yeltsin signed a pact Wednesday
with Belarus that calls for heightened
military cooperation and eventually a
merger of the two countries.
An unsteady Yeltsin, who at one
point lost his way in his speech and
needed help from an aide to find his
place, reached the agreement with
Belarus President Alexander
Lukashenko, who is accused of holding
onto power illegitimately after his term
as president of the former Soviet repub-
lie expired last summer.
While the Russia-Belarus treaty is
largely a symbolic bid to win support
from people in both countries who long
for a restoration of the Soviet Union, a
secondary accord signed by the leaders
has a more immediate effect: It permits
Russia to post troops in Belarus on the
border with Poland, a new member of

President Clinton and European lead-
ers whom Yeltsin once counted as
friends have been increasingly critical
of Russia's devastating war in the sept
ratist republic of Chechnya, in which an
untold number of civilians have died.
Barak, peace deal to
bring security
KFAR SABA, Israel - Trying to.
chip away opposition to a withdrawal
from the Golan Heights, Prime Ministo
Ehud Barak promised yesterday that
Israel would enjoy unprecedented peace:-
and security once he signs peace deals-
with Syria and Lebanon, both possible
within a few months.
Barak launched a campaign to sell-
skeptical Israelis on the price for peace
after the surprise announcement that.
long-suspended negotiations with Syria
will resume next week.
- Compiled from Daily wire report

'1 4
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NEWS Jennifer Yachnin, Managing Editor
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