In Honor of Rosalind Franklin

The Google Doodle honors Rosalind Franklin.

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Admitting that Rosie's work

Admitting that Rosie's work was a "key event" in the determination of DNA's structure doesn't make up for not including her as a co-author on the 1953 Nature paper. But then again, it was 1953.

It was nice of Crick to be

It was nice of Crick to be gracious but the structure was not predictable from the x-ray picture (i.e. is could not be solved to predict the structure as is true for some regular crystals)and the Google depiction of Franklin perceiving the structure of DNA by examining her spots is disingenuous at best. Franklin and others had access to that data and no one else was even close in their imagination of what structure corresponded to it. The biggest prospective contribution the B-form picture made to the solution is convincing Crick that the helical structure notion MUST be correct and inspring them to redouble their own efforts. The A-form pictures also implied this and had been produced by other crystalographers but were more complicated and thus perhaps conveyed less confidence. The tinker toy approach W&C used to solve he puzzle was both clever and somewhat bold as it probably seemed common and artisan to the brilliant intellects at MRC. Nevertheless Watson's description of a flash of insight derived from model tinkering and then bulding is very credible. This is where Franklin's (and Wilkins' et al) data actually became valuable. Given the model derived from creative insight it was possible to calculate that this structure would yield x-ray diffractions like Franklin's (and possible to imagine some bond rotations etc of that structure that would yield the A pictures). Thus while the x-ray pictures and Chargaff's rules and all the other bits that were finally explained by knowing the double helical structure were invlauable in inspring conviction that the intuited model was correct, it is more fair to say the model predicts the data than to say the data predict the model.