Stolen Laptop Contained 2 Years of Cancer Research Data


Today’s “Dude, you got to back up your data!” public-service announcement comes courtesy of Sook Shin, a university researcher who says her stolen laptop contained years worth of data related to a possible cure for prostate cancer.

And nope, you guessed it. She didn’t back up and says some of her research can never be retrieved, while other parts could take up to two years to replicate.

Shin and husband Ralf Jankecht, a professor of cell biology at Oklahoma University, are leading cancer researchers at the school. Sunday, they made a quick stop in Oklahoma City on their way back to the lab, according to the local News 9. That’s when someone smashed the window of their car and made off with a 13-inch white MacBook in a dark orange computer bag.

“I’m devastated and I feel so guilty,” a tearful Shin told News 9.

The pair is now offering a $1,000 reward for return of the computer, no questions asked. “Thief, it is OK. Everybody makes mistakes,” reads a flyer that’s been posted in area pawn shops.

I read this story twice and both times I started feeling sympathy toward the researcher only to have another part of me say, “NO! NO! How do you not back up your data??!!?? You never heard of a hard disk crashing? Fire? Over zealous custom agents?”

Let’s put it this way. I back up this blog every two weeks and put a copy of it on my hard drive, external hard drive, and burn a cd. And that’s just for this shitty blog. If this blog were to disappear tomorrow, humanity would be fine. In fact, we’d probably be a little more productive without this distraction. How do you go two years without backing up your data? I can’t think about this anymore. Let’s move on.

Things That Make Me So Happy

It’s crappy out, I didn’t get enough sleep, and somewhere in the world somebody is dying a painful death. But none of that matters to me now because the mailman just delivered this:

Granted, I’m a bit irritated that the cover picture has been mucked with.

And I’m about to start the third Kurt Wallander book, The White Lioness. Swedish crime novels and delta blues. That’s all it takes to make me happy today. And a Red Bull. That’s all I need. And this paddle game. And chair. The Red bull, Swedish Crime novel, the paddle game and the chair, that’s all I need..