Friday, June 27, 2014

Week Five: Friday

Today we had our first journal club meeting of the lab. Abby and I had read the paper Stretching DNA by Marko and Siggia. The paper introduces the theory behind the worm like chain model of polymers and applies it to DNA, which happens to be a semi-flexible polymer. The main importance of the paper is a useful formula which gives an approximate interpolation for the WLC force versus extension. This is a go to formula for most force extension work when it comes to force spectroscopy experiments with DNA. The main importance of this article however, is the fact that this interpolation formula is only useful for low and high end force ranges. At ranges in the middle, this formula is no longer accurate.

In addition to reading, I looked at more of the code today, trying to get the images displayed from the camera to the screen saved to file. What I found is that there exists a fatal error in the existing version of the code due to an inappropriate file call. What will happen if the user attempts to save the images to file is that the application will crash, and the user will be forced to stop the program through the task manager. This is of course not very useful.

Finally, Professor Andresen continued to teach me the basics of machining, introducing me to the procedures in operating the mill. We used the mill to machine a piece that attaches our XY table to the posts we machined earlier. This is what the lab looks like as of now:

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