Metavalent Stigmergy

How New Default Consensus Realities Instantiate

Future Economy Summit

Our patrons got this alert as soon as the event went live.

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Addressing The Global Narcissism Pandemic

Finding the Others who Understand the Global Narcissism Pandemic AND What-To-Do-About-It Edition.

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Incrementing Default Consensus Reality DCR++

Jaimie Wheal calls it Meaning 3.0

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The Art of Thinking

“We are all poor performers at some things.” — Greg Salyer

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Sane ROI

Sane ROI is a concept that I’ve been passionate about, for years, and is also presented in the book. I haven’t always used this specific terminology, but I’m happy to introduce it, in this entry. In short, it means re-engineering our intentionally exclusionary corporation code to be fundamentally inclusive. Not just of people, but of ideas, and priorities. Especially, priorities.

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The Structure Of Toxic Conversations on Twitter

Certainly, applies to all toxic online conversations, YouTube comments are equally infamous, let it alone the dumpster fires of 4-chan, 8-chan, and so forth. One tiny omission in this excellent data analysis, or maybe I missed it, but nowhere did I hear a definition of toxicity.

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Taming The Two-Forked Tongue

From the Science, Psy, And Spirituality series. The Prajñā Paramita, or Heart Sutra states:

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Literal Monkey-Mind Pong

By all means, please do keep up the mocking sub-tweets and OSINT social annotations about the #PostAutomationEra! Knock yourself out, while you’re literally losing at brain-pong against a monkey. :astonished::rolling_on_the_floor_laughing: Video, below the fold.

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Culture, culture, culture, culture, culture.

What if viruses do not cause illness, entirely? What if they are a necessary but highly insufficient factor in both contracting illness and disease transmission?

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Mechanical Gears in Nature

Can’t make this up. Right on the heels of the previous post, this epic troll! Functioning ‘mechanical gears’ seen in nature for the first time.

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What if We are Not Biological Machines and Human Nature is the Biggest AI Risk of All?

In this down-to-earth and transcendent discussion between Dr’s Zubin Damanian and Federico Faggin, below, it’s easy to conclude that Arthur C. Clarke got it completely right, again, in his timeless computer character HAL 9000:

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Slavery Was Never Abolished

Slavery was never abolished. Abolished means obliterated. Completely. No exceptions. None.

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Científicos conectan cerebro humano a una computadora de manera inalámbrica por primera vez

Scientists connect human brain to computer wirelessly for first time ever (2 minute read)

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There Is No Complete Knowledge About Anything

Nor Can There Be.

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No More Lofty Goals

Finally, no more need lofty goals like to Organize and Monetize the Entire Galaxy’s Information. Just a simple life spent enjoying the process of inquiring, together, to organize this one tiny mind’s information.

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Incorporation of a nucleoside analog maps genome repair sites in postmitotic human neurons

Nothing we’ve mentioned means mRNA engineering is obsolete! Far from it. Only means to maybe also pay attention to environmental factors & effects in the emergence of mutations and new strains. Does it make sense? Or no?

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Curt Jaimungal's Theories of Everything

This is what a Global Cognition Group Looks Like

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Writing in the Post-Automation Era

In the age of Medium, Substack, Patreon, and new platforms like PanQuake, being a writer in the #PostAutomationEra is becoming something entirely different that it has ever been, before. If it wasn’t easy in the past, imagine the futility in the context of a constantly chatter global brain monkey mind.

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Our Shared Systemic Shadow Work

We do … um … perhaps have a bit more work to do.

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Everyday Omnitention

The ablity to pay omnitention maybe isn’t quite it, but we do perhaps need a word for the capability, the Post-Automation Era literacy, of paying the right amount of attention to all things at all times; online and offline, in order to be a reasonably informed being in this age of the hybrid human cortex-cloud extended mind.

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Moore's Law vs. The Algorithmic Commons

It’s not either / or, it’s both / and.

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Growing The Flame of Awareness

What does Krishnamurti mean by, “love is total attention?” Is it so? And if so, do we not certainly love our work far more than our family?

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Spelunking Freedom and Equality

What is the nature of freedom, equality, in the context of Earth, 2021? If can, try consider these two videos, together, without prejudice or bias.

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Clarifying Consensus

“There seems to be a bit of a minor communication error, here. Please stand by.”

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That said TO me is not always directed AT me

Yesterday's realization.

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Evergreen Context

The broken cargo ship, compared to an aircraft carrier transiting the same location, and the resulting traffic jam.

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Mutations of Meaning

“The human species is going through a mutation in the meaning of biological reproduction. The bishops who are imposing orders … are not actually interested in protecting the moral principles they’re citing, they’re protecting their own power. That’s what’s really going on, in my view.” – Former Priest, James Carroll.

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What a Narcissist!

Wait for it … Only Russell Brand could negate the negging of Jerry Seinfeld with this kind of flair (not the Reddit kine; real kine, ʻohana nui.) ROTFLMAO. Seeing isn’t necessarily believing; but we can watch and laugh anyway.

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From ACE to ACE

Micromacro. From Adverse Childhood Experience to Air Combat Evolution. Awesome sauce. Awesome psycho-sauce, to be more precise.

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A Culture That Idolizes and Reifies Narcissism And Psychopathy

How online and mainstream beer & cigar man-o-sphere and hyper-commercialized socialization agents encourage and cultivate an increasingly narcissistic and psychopathological culture among both men and women, with a focus on the manufacture of fake alpha males.

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Vindictive Morality Is Going To Get Us All Killed

That’s all. That’s the post. As seen on Medium:

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Uncomfortable Truths and Ethical AI

The more I observe life on Earth, the more that I see the continuity between the personal, professional, family, corporate, community, national, medical, mental health, and ethical environments.

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Live In Suffering

“You have to live in suffering. Visit suffering 1 hour a day. 23 hours you’re not in it. But the answer is in there.” — Goggins

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What is Curation Value?

#CurationValue is generated by the unique perspectives and lenses that an individual perceiver and experiencer brings to this emerging hybrid-human-ai global cognition space.

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Testing Git Journal for Posting

Also testing image upload.

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It's Worse

“Theoretically it doesn’t make sense, but experimentally it does.” - Richard Borcherds with Curt Jaimungal, of the mathematics of quantum field theory.

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Becoming More Human with AI

It’s Called Actual Intelligence

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A Post-Automation Era Pi Day

Let’s celebrate with the post-pandemic Share-the-Pi Act of 2021

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On the Self-Rejecting Desire to be Understood and Accepted

The Myth of the Misuderstood Artist Isn’t a Myth. Here’s how it works. At least, for this Interstitial Intercognition Artist’s life work of memes, dreams, themes, threads, publications, portfolios, books, blogs, articles, posts, tweets, grams, tiks, toks, css-blocks, fiction, non-fiction, intonation, inflection, flowing and glowing in fractal edition since 1991.

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Ultimate intelligence without ultimate compassion is ultimate ignorance; which might as well be called ultimate evil. Don’t be evil.

Ultimate intelligence without ultimate compassion is ultimate ignorance; which might as well be called ultimate evil. Don’t be evil.

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Wordpress Fork Refactoring

Ever pursuing it’s own perpetual existence, the paid-hosting Wordpress content that fell offline will eventually (re)[e]merge here. Hopefully before 2016.

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Subliminal Probing for Private Information via EEG-Based BCI Devices

File under: “That’ll never happen, but has” via @cryptomeorg:

9 Conclusion In this work we have examined the question if subliminal attacks to users of EEG-based braincomputer interfaces (BCIs) are feasible. We have designed a proof-of-concept experiment in which the attacker tries to infer if the user knows a particular person or not, without the user noticing that she is being attacked. We hid visual stimuli in form of portrait photos of Barack Obama in a video as well as other visual stimuli that serve as a contrast. In an experiment with 27 subjects we find that our naive attack strategy is able to obtain 66% accuracy in predicting that a subject is familiar with Barack Obama, while an advanced attack strategy that incorporates confidence levels is able to improve the accuracy to 90%. The subjects achieved different levels of recognition in terms of detecting the manipulation of the video. At each recognition level, the attack was successful for most users including the users that did not notice any manipulation. 16 Our subliminal attacks have been carried out in a controlled setting to demonstrate their feasibility. Future research directions include exploration of different pathways for improving the attack, such as more sophisticated hiding mechanisms and internal subliminal validation techniques. The findings presented in this work suggest that BCI software with the full access to raw EEG data of users constitutes a new attack vector to user privacy and user secrets (arXiv:1312.6052v1 [cs.CR] 20 Dec 2013).
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We have demonstrated the first human brain-to-brain interface

"That's one small twitch for [a] man; one giant flick for mankind." @metavalent

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rNRDc714W5I]

Direct Brain-to-Brain Communication in Humans: A Pilot Study

“We have demonstrated the first human brain-to-brain interface for a very simple form of transfer of information,” Rao said. Moreover, the prior brain-to-brain interfaces involved electrodes implanted directly into rat brains, “so this is the first noninvasive brain-to-brain interface as well.”

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Festo ExoHand (video)

Exo-hand. Extended cognition and embodiment is one way that we will work on Mars, from Earth, even with up to 16 minute radio signal delay. This video also nicely illustrates the awkwardness that substrate independent minds will encounter in various prosthetic configurations. Patience and perseverance won’t just be noble character traits, they will be among the most essential characteristics for long term post human adaptation and survival.

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Exo-hand

Exo-hand. Extended cognition and embodiment is one way that we will work on Mars, from Earth, even with up to 16 minute radio signal delay. This video also nicely illustrates the awkwardness that substrate independent minds will encounter in various prosthetic configurations. Patience and perseverance  won’t just be noble character traits, they will be among the most essential characteristics for long term post human adaptation and survival.

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Countdown to Digital Simulation of Every Last Neuron in the Human Brain

Scientific American:<blockquote>A Countdown to a Digital Simulation of Every Last Neuron in the Human Brain. Building a vast digital simulation of the brain could transform neuroscience and medicine and reveal new ways of making more powerful computers. By the year 2020 digital brains may be able to represent the inner workings of a single brain cell or even the whole brain.</blockquote><p>Including, as long promised here, the emergence of neuroprosthetics, mind-machine interfaces, and hybrid human and machine minds. Now, things can begin to get interesting.</p>

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NYC to Chill out on Under 25 Grams

Bloomberg Backs Plan to Limit Arrests for Marijuana - NYTimes.com

The New York Police Department, the mayor and the city’s top prosecutors on Monday endorsed a proposal to decriminalize the open possession of small amounts of marijuana, giving an unexpected lift to an effort by Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo to cut down on the number of people arrested as a result of police stops.
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Waiting for the Bionic Man

The author’s site lists this article as Waiting for the Bionic Man, so maybe Wired applied some kind of proprietary troll-baiting re-title algorithm to bump up the irritated enthusiast click through rate, or something: “A True Bionic Limb Remains Far Out of Reach.” Whatever. @MikeChorost’s report is a fanstastic reality update to the previous post and indeed, all the content of this blog. We need much more of this to Get There!

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Grokking the Higgs Boson

via Matt Riddley, WSJ:

"The most memorable metaphor was offered by David Miller of University College, London. Since Mr. Waldegrave had been a colleague of Margaret Thatcher, Mr. Miller chose to portray the Higgs field thus: "Imagine a cocktail party of political-party workers who are uniformly distributed across the floor, all talking to their nearest neighbors. The ex-prime minister enters and crosses the room. All of the workers in her neighborhood are strongly attracted to her and cluster round her. As she moves, she attracts the people she comes close to, while the ones she has left return to their even spacing."

The party-goers are the Higgs field, which gives mass to particles like electrons (Lady Thatcher) by viscously impeding their progress. "Once moving, she is harder to stop, and once stopped, she is harder to get moving again because the clustering process has to be restarted." The Higgs boson itself he compared to a rumor spreading through the party, causing a wave of local clustering in the Higgs field."

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The $60,000 Bionic Boy

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABfj8AK-X04&w=480&h=360]

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Not Survival of the Fittest, but Construction of the Intended

“The next programming paradigm is life science. We’re going to create a living world, this century.” Andrew Hessel

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New Humanity - The Revolution is Evolution

“We believe that humankind is currently on the verge of a complete collapse of it’s value structures. We believe that the world needs a new social formation that can be based around the ideas of transhumanism. New Humanity. We need revolution, but we don’t need a bloody revolution, we need technological revolution.” - Dmitry Iskov

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Face transplant patient beginning to look himself again

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-15863721

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How to Build a DNA Brain

Your homework for the leisurely holiday weekend is at Caltech DNA and Natural Algorithms Group.

There are three major scientific mysteries of the natural world (via DNA.Caltech.edu):

  • How can life arise from a mixture of inert molecules?
  • How does the body develop from a single cell?
  • How does the mind arise from a collection of simple neurons?

dna.biochemical.brain

"The answer is yes, and all it takes is a few small DNA molecules."

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N_VisNOKQMc&w=480&h=360]

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fgGBZZYEm_Y&w=480&h=360]

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ET Math - How different could it be?

If 2+2 occurs in the cosmos and nobody adds them, is the sum still 4?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9MV65airaPA&w=500&h=284]

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The Secret Lives of the Brain

"The conscious part is like a stowaway on a trans-atlantic steamship that is taking credit for the whole journey, without acknowledging the engineering underfoot. So, it's like when you have and idea and you say, 'oh, I just thought of something,' it wasn't you who thought of it, your brains been working on that for days or weeks, behind the scenes; churning things, consolidating information, trying things out; [pop!] finally it serves it up to you and you say, 'hey, I'm a genius!' But it wasn't you that thought of it, right?" - David Eagleman, neuroscientist and author of Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain.

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Human Echolocation

"Convention, by it's nature, adheres to itself and rejects what is not conventional." – Daniel Kish

 

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The Growing Eyeborg & Cyborg Population

As we've long tracked, the eyeborgs continue to grow in numbers amongst us.

"The species has evolved to this point in time, but who says that's the end of the line?" - David Jönsson

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TW78wbN-WuU&w=560&h=315]

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Cognitive Computing - 100,000x Cost Reduction Impact

“Cognitive computing chips aim to reduce the cost of extracting information from ever changing spatial-temporal environments around us by an order of 100,000. Imagine the impact,” humans.

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Programming Biology - Tunable Microbial Nanowires

Nature Nanotechnolgy reports:<blockquote>the conductivity of the biofilm can be tuned by regulating gene expression, and also by varying the gate voltage in a transistor configuration. The conductivity of the nanofilaments has a temperature dependence similar to that of a disordered metal, and the conductivity could be increased by processing.</blockquote> [gallery link=”file” columns=”2”]

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BioBolt ASIC microchip skull implant

Once again, the inexhaustible KAI reporting:<blockquote>“A bolt implanted in the skull would contain an ASIC (application-specific integrated circuit) microchip under the skin in the skull. It would pick up and process neural signals, and transmit them via the skin directly to a receiver located in or near the target muscle group (such as an arm or hand).”</blockquote>[gallery link=”file” columns=”2”]

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iLimb & Myoelectric Replacement Parts Update on the path to

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsakrBzTdoA&w=560&h=349]

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Artificial Retina Progress

MIT Retinal Implant Research Group: “The major thrust of the RLE Retinal Implant Research Group is to develop a microelectronic retinal implant to restore vision to patients with age-related macular degeneration and retinitis pigmentosa. The group’s implant design has unique features that improve its safety, function and performance. Efforts are currently underway to test the implant design. The group works closely with colleagues in Boston area hospitals.”

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Neurovigil's iBrain - How long from Pong to Portal 2?

Next, what to DO with all these capabilities, right? Granted, we’re talking on the order of Atari Pong video game resolutions here; however, it didn’t take long to go from Pong to Portal 2, right?<blockquote>iBrain promises to open a huge pipeline of data with its powerful but simple brain-reading tech, which is gaining traction thanks to technological advances. [Including] non-medicinal uses such as human-computer interfaces – in an earlier announcement, NeuroVigil noted, “We plan to make these kinds of devices available to the transportation industry, biofeedback, and defense. Applications regarding pandemics and bioterrorism are being considered but cannot be shared in this format.” And there’s even a popular line of kid’s toys that use an essentially similar technique, powered by NeuroSky sensors - themselves destined for future uses as games console controllers or even input devices for computers (Fast Company).</blockquote><div align="center">[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aBqVUkn_4_M&w=480&h=390]</div>

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Psychology of a techno-human cognitive network

Oh oh. The normals have found us (Psychology Today) . Time to break camp and move forward again.<blockquote>In short, augmented cognition. Or, put another way, in a world where complexity is already overwhelming, and yet continues to accelerate, networked cognition is becoming increasingly critical: cognition as an emergent property of techno-human networks, rather than the individual Cartesian brains that we are all so proud of.

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CMU Robotics SARCOS

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WKt_TMeAyg?hd=1]

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7 Modes of Neuropower

In Politics for the Neurocentric Age, (Journal of Futures Studies, November 2010, 15(2): 51 - 70) Jake F. Dunagan delineates Seven Modes of Neuropower, tempered with the admonishment, “that we should be wary of falling into the latest ‘magic bullet’ mentality that sees neuroscience and neurotechnologies as the solution to all our problems, from health to law to selling more soup. The challenge for neuroscientists and ethicists is to create a nuanced and layered view of developments to temper the litany of hype, and to contextualize the rise of the brain sciences within larger psycho-social processes, shifting political-economies, and mythologies surrounding the brain and mind. My goal is to examine the process as it is occurring now — to continue to question the priorities and values that drive this research and its application in the future, with the goal of seeing neuroscience deliver its greatest benefit to the most people on Earth.”

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Ode to the Brain

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JB7jSFeVz1U?hd=1&w=560&h=349] “Here is this mass of jelly. You can hold in the palm of your hands. And it can contemplate the vastness of interstellar space.” - Vilayanur Ramachandran

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What If Bacteria Designed Computers?

[vimeo 858385 w=500 h=282]<p>What If Bacteria Designed Computers? from Jared Boone on Vimeo.</p><p>Ward Cunningham - What If Bacteria Designed Computers?

This talk explores Bynase, the biologically inspired protocol that Cybord computers use to signal values amongst themselves. The primary value of Bynase is that it drives system designers into novel tradeoffs with analogies in biological systems. A second value of Bynase is that it encourages casual small-scale hardware/software projects suitable for one-off art or educational projects.

Ward Cunningham, best known as the inventor of the Wiki, is a computer programmer who takes inspiration from life’s processes ranging from cell signaling to cultural evolution. His day jobs include serving as Chief Technology Officer of AboutUs.org, a growth company hosting the communities formed by organizations and their constituents. Ward also co-founded the consultancy, Cunningham & Cunningham, Inc., has served as a Director of the Eclipse Foundation, an Architect in Microsoft’s Patterns & Practices Group, the Director of R&D at Wyatt Software and as Principle Engineer in the Tektronix Computer Research Laboratory.

This talk took place at DorkbotPDX 0x01, March 30, 2008. Visit dorkbotpdx.org for more information.
</p>

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Transhumanism 101

A gentle introduction for inquiring neophytes. Welcome home. We’ve been waiting just for you.

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The Internet of Brains - Evoking Eywa

Back in September, scientists decoded words from brain signals. It’s not a matter of if, but when inter-cortical cognition grids happens. Inter-cortical communication will completely disrupt the arc of human evolution. Odds. Are. You. Are. Not. Ready. Human. You’re every thought will be laid bare to all other minds on the grid. Lusts, fears, paranoia, confusion, all of it. Prior to going on-grid would be a good time to practice judge not, lest ye be judged. Prior to going on-grid would be a good time to practice putting idle synaptic cycles to better use in order to be found useful. Prior to going on-grid would be a good time to think about what substrate independence really means, psychologically.

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Increasingly Intimate Merging of Biology and Technology

There were countless magnificently metavalent breakthroughs in 2010, and the work of Prof. Itamar Willner’s Group is certainly in hot pursuit of some of the most noteworthy.

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Coming Out Cyborg. Hello Humans. Yes, We're Here.

Yes, we’re friendly. In fact, friendly and symbiotically cooperative to an extent many of you cannot yet imagine. We do suggest, however, that you not mistake our accommodating nature as weakness. Do not fear, for you will not be harmed by us in any way, ever; for violence is antithetical to our deepest human nature, which we share in common with you down to the deepest tap root of evolution; even as our rapidly accelerating prosthetic capabilities have expanded our capacities and merged, embedded, and entangled adaptive functionalities within and throughout our bodies; to the point of consummate metamorphic synthesis. We are you and we are new.

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Large-scale Structure of the Universe | Who Lives in the Eleventh Dimension?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFlzyxSQhTc&w=480&h=390]

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Biodigital Brain - human brain organically fused with computer chips

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tIIbDunFNs&w=480&h=390]

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Dissolving Human Embodiment & Billions of Close Personal Friends

The following is nowhere close to being a full transcript; just interesting snippets that I took a few minutes to capture. Quotations are Coupland, non quotations are the interviewer.

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Being Bionic - Cyborg Heart Makes Coronary Death Optional

By the time she returned home, Verna, who received the device as part of a clinical trial, was able to dispense with her oxygen tank and take on household chores. Three years later, she is teaching piano to her five great-grandchildren, cooking meals for her family and driving by herself.

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eLegs by Berkeley Bionics

“It was so natural that’s what really gripped me. This is not a wave of the future, this is reality.” – Amanda Boxtel

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An Atemporal Feynman Method for Pre-Distressed Antique Futurity Now

Bruce Sterling on “the pre-distressed antique futurity,” etc. He explains that William Gibson was saying that, “if you have a genuinely avante garde idea, something that’s really new, you should write about it or create about it as if it were being read 20 years from now. In other words, in order to do it, you want to strip away the sci-fi chrome, the sense of wonder. You want it to be antiqued, before it hits the page or the screen. Approach it from that perspective. No longer allow yourself to be hypnotized by the sense of technical novelty; just refuse to go there. Accept that it’s already passe, and create it from that point of view; try to make it news that stays news. Refuse the awe of the future, refuse reverence to the past. If they’re really the same thing, you need to approach them from the same perspective.”

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Machine coprocessors for the brain

Machine coprocessors for the brain - Next Big Future via M6S

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Avenues to Substrate Independence

Ultimately, there will be diverse UX alternatives for substrate independence. The robotic substrate is certainly a fascinating option to consider and we not only can, but must immediately begin preparatory thinking, training, behavioral, and psychological exercises to prepare for increasingly high resolution software and hardware mediated experiences.

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Psilocybin - Organic Gateway to Neurosecurity, Memory Preservation, and Mental Enhancement?

What shamans and psychonauts have known for eons ... if only we could filter out the noisy side effects, something powerfully positive for humanity is locked away in these plants.

These and other secrets will doubtlessly be revealed, debunked, endorsed, and descried at the Foresight Personalized Life Extension Conference, October 9-10, 2010 at the San Francisco Marriott.

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Bionic Legs Update

The path to substrate independence, one set of limbs and organs at a time.

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Clunky, Rudimentary Prototypes for Substrate Independence?

Some of our post-protoplasmic tenements may be meat, some may be metal, some may be silicon, some may even attempt the vastly more inconceivable leap to pure software, or even into the pure light of quantum computational fields. Regardless of one’s intolerance for hype or inclination for reading too much into the posthuman tea leaves, one thing is for certain: this  experimental era of mashups and multi-substrate hybrids over the next few decades will be both exciting and at times troubling to behold. We’re participating in our own evolution, for better or worse.

Pandora’s box is open. There’s no putting the genie back in the bottle. Pick a favorite cheesy B-movie metaphor if you like, the progress manifest in seemingly innocuous projects like the “advanced telepresence robot created by Silicon Valley robotics start-up Anybots” is already analogous to prototype bicycles with wings found in Orville and Wilbur Wright’s earliest garage. Are video-phone sticks on wheels absurdly crude, compared to remote embodiments we’ll consider humdrum by the 2020’s? Of course. At the same time, we err to dismiss them as inconsequential. No, the human drive toward applied, adaptive futuretechture is made of this very ho-hum stuff.

In any and all cases, the impulse toward richer, more integrated remote presence and extra-corporeal embodiment experiences continues accelerating.

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Super Human - Revolution of the Species

"Inspired by the 150th publication anniversary of The Origin of Species, Darwin’s evolutionary treatise, Super Human: Revolution of the Species turned the spotlight on collaborations between artists and scientists and the impact these investigations have on what it means to be human, now and into the future."

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Neurotheology - Toward a New Neurospiritual Tradition

"Just as Copernicus's heliocentric notion of universe is now bedrock truth, the Neuro Revolution will bring about new ideas of human spirituality that will forever reshape our understanding of humanity's role and place the universe. A quiet transformation has begun, albeit one that may take centuries to play out fully" (Lynch, 152. The Neuro Revolution.).

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Tonight - The Business of the Brain **SOLD OUT**

May 18, 2010 MIT/Stanford VLAB:

Brain-Computer Interfacing (BCI) promises a quantum leap in human interaction with technology -- enabling our thoughts and emotions to control devices and enabling devices to know what we’re "really thinking" and feeling. Currently, there are more than 300 million brain toting people in the United States alone, making the opportunities for BCI products far-reaching.
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Book - Scientific American's Brave New Brain

Brave New Brain:<blockquote>How Neuroscience, Brain-Machine Interfaces, Neuroimaging, Psychopharmacology, Epigenetics, the Internet, and Our Own Minds are Stimulating and Enhancing the Future of Mental Power</blockquote>

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BCI - Thought2Text at 1 Letter Per Second

Singularity Hub reporting:<blockquote>The world’s first patient-ready and commercially available brain computer interface just arrived at CeBIT 2010. The Intendix from Guger Technologies (g*tec) is a system that uses an EEG cap to measure brain activity in order to let you type with your thoughts. Meant to work with those with locked-in syndrome, or other disabilities, Intendix is simple enough to use after just 10 minutes of training. You simply focus on a grid of letters as they flash. When your desired letter lights up, brain activity spikes and Intendix types it. As users master the system, a few will be able to type as quickly as 1 letter a second. Besides typing, it can also trigger alarms, convert text to speech, print, copy, or email.</blockquote> More details on Using an EEG-Based Brain-Computer Interface for Virtual Cursor Movement with BCI2000 and exclusive lab video at JOVE: Journal Of Visualized Experiments.

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BCI - Thought2Text at 1 Letter Per Second

Singularity Hub reporting:<blockquote>The world’s first patient-ready and commercially available brain computer interface just arrived at CeBIT 2010. The Intendix from Guger Technologies (g*tec) is a system that uses an EEG cap to measure brain activity in order to let you type with your thoughts. Meant to work with those with locked-in syndrome, or other disabilities, Intendix is simple enough to use after just 10 minutes of training. You simply focus on a grid of letters as they flash. When your desired letter lights up, brain activity spikes and Intendix types it. As users master the system, a few will be able to type as quickly as 1 letter a second. Besides typing, it can also trigger alarms, convert text to speech, print, copy, or email.</blockquote> More details on Using an EEG-Based Brain-Computer Interface for Virtual Cursor Movement with BCI2000 and exclusive lab video at JOVE: Journal Of Visualized Experiments.

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Second Life with BCI

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y8TEsoti3EI&hl=en_US&fs=1&rel=0&color1=0x402061&color2=0x9461ca]

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What a Bird Brain - Or, Why Neurons Are Amazing

This morning I watched a bird – I believe a finch – in the back yard. He was making use of the bird house, which is quite small, featuring perhaps a 3/4” hole for a front door.

Birdhouse

This bird arrived on the perch with about a 4 inch long stick in it’s beak. Obviously, getting that in the front door didn’t go too well.

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What a Bird Brain - Or, Why Neurons Are Amazing

This morning I watched a bird – I believe a finch – in the back yard. He was making use of the bird house, which is quite small, featuring perhaps a 3/4” hole for a front door.

Birdhouse

This bird arrived on the perch with about a 4 inch long stick in it’s beak. Obviously, getting that in the front door didn’t go too well.

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Mobile and Wireless BCI

“Electroencephalogram (EEG) is a powerful non-invasive tool widely used in both medical diagnosis and neurobiological research because it provides high temporal resolution in milliseconds which directly reflects the dynamics of the generating cell assemblies, and it is the only brain imaging modality that does not require the head/body to be fixed.” – Swartz Center for Computational Neuroscience

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Emotiv Neuroheadset - You Think, Therefore You Can

This is too good for Researchers and Developers to not give them the free advertising.

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Noninvasive Neural Prostheses Using Mobile and Wireless EEG

ABSTRACT

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The Origin of the Human Mind - Brain Imaging and Evolution

How to map a 1GB per mm2 intracranial mushdrive and other empirically based explanatory spelunking.

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Gently Breaking the News to the Normals

Get ready, it’s all coming together and now is the time to gently prepare the normals for what’s next; even if it’s by way of the equivalent of visual nursery rhymes and benign Olympic sideshows, for now.

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In the Lab with Brain Co-Processors

One of the projects being developed by the group is a form of assistive technology they call a brain co-processor. This system, also referred to as a cognitive assistive system, would initially be aimed at people suffering from cognitive disorders such as Alzheimer's disease. It would monitor people's activities and brain functions, determine when they needed help, and provide exactly the right bit of helpful information at just the right time. It could also find applications for people without any disability, as a form of brain augmentation.

SOURCES: MIT via KAI

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Aimee Mullins - Athlete, Cyborg, Incremental Posthuman Ambassador

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Ultimate 6th Sense Brain Implant

"Who knows? Maybe, in another ten years, we'll be here with the ultimate sixth sense brain implant." -- Pattie Maes
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The field is the sole governing agency of the particle

Is it merely cheesy pop pseudo science … <blockquote>“The field is the sole governing agency of the particle.” Since Einstein uses the term particle to represent “matter,” he is acknowledging that the field controls our physical reality.</blockquote>… or a somewhat useful intermediate abstraction on the way to more precise understanding …<blockquote>“Epigenetics has become much more interesting because it allows us to look at how gene expression is changed by environmental events, explainable in part by histone modifications.”</blockquote>

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Secret Math of Fly Eyes + AR Contact Lens

Wired:<blockquote>The researchers’ algorithm is composed of a series of five equations through which data from cameras can be run. Each equation represents tricks used by fly circuits to handle changing levels of brightness, contrast and motion, and their parameters constantly shift in response to input. Unlike Lucas-Kanade, the algorithm doesn’t return a frame-by-frame comparison of every last pixel, but emphasizes large-scale patterns of change. In this sense, it works a bit like video-compression systems that ignore like-colored, unshifting areas.</blockquote>Embedded in Contact Lenses with Built-In Virtual Graphics might minimize power requirements:<blockquote>One obvious problem is powering such a device. The circuitry requires 330 microwatts but doesn’t need a battery. Instead, a loop antenna picks up power beamed from a nearby radio source. The team has tested the lens by fitting it to a rabbit.

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In one sense, our hands define our humanity ...

… and just perhaps, they will help to define the most familiar and comforting path toward substrate-independent posthumanity SmartHand device. (Credit: Image rights American Friends of Tel Aviv University)

Ekenstam told a television interviewer, "I am using muscles which I haven't used for years. I grab something hard, and then I can feel it in the fingertips, which is strange, as I don't have them anymore. It's amazing." The team first chose to build a hand, however, because of its unique challenges. "The fingers in the hand are the most complex appendages we have," Prof. Shacham-Diamand observes. "The brain needs to synchronise the movement of each digit in a very complicated way." While the prototype looks very "bionic" now, in the future SmartHand scientists plan to equip it with artificial skin that will give the brain even more tactile feedback.
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What is it?

Imagining an unequalable, universally contiguous, extended human cognition substrate; a phenomenologically consistent and sustainable epi-neocortical architecture, intrinsically obviating corporation and nation; diverse, progressive, transparent, authentic, open, extensible. Observe, interpret, forecast, design, build, uplift.

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Legal Challenges in an Age of Robotics

On Thursday, November 12, 2009, sponsored by The Rock Center for Corporate Governance and Stanford Program in Law, Science, and Technology, Legal Challenges in an Age of Robotics:
<blockquote>Once relegated to factories and fiction, robots are rapidly entering the mainstream. Advances in artificial intelligence translate into ever-broadening functionality and autonomy. Recent years have seen an explosion in the use of robotics in warfare, medicine, and exploration. Industry analysts and UN statistics predict equally significant growth in the market for personal or service robotics over the next few years. What unique legal challenges will the widespread availability of sophisticated robots pose? Three panelists with deep and varied expertise discuss the present, near future, and far future of robotics and the law.</blockquote>

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Sentience - A grouping of types of perception

It's important now to recognize that nowhere in the concept of sentience is there a mention of mind, intelligence, or self-awareness.
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More Obsolete Human Skills 2020 - 1.) Handwriting 2.) Manual driving, flying

PhysOrg, (via KAIN):
<blockquote>Stanford engineers are developing the first autonomous racing car to climb Pikes Peak, a challenging 12.4-mile ascent in the Rocky Mountains, at 130 mph, as a way to create and test safety systems they hope one day will be used in all vehicles.

“If we can design a car that can autonomously go up Pikes Peak, we can design a car that can take over when a driver falls asleep,” said Kirstin Talvala, one of the students.</blockquote>


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Cognitive Liberty and Right to One's Own Mind

More extraordinarily high-signal outputs from the seemingly inexhaustible cognition engine behind Sentient Developments:<blockquote>Cognitive liberty is not just about the right to modify one’s mind, emotional balance and psychological framework (for example, through anti-depressants, cognitive enhancers, psychotropic substances, etc.), it’s also very much about the right to not have one’s mind altered against their will … </blockquote><blockquote>Our society has a rather poor track record when it comes to respecting the validity of certain mind-types …</blockquote><blockquote> Forced cognitive modification is an issue that’s affecting real people today.</blockquote>

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Life-recording - Are you game?

				<p>Assuming the technology was robust, reliable, non-intrusive, and affordable&acirc;��would you want to record your whole life?</p>
				<p>via <a href='http://ieet.org/index.php/IEET/more/treder20091016/'>Life-recording: Are you game?</a></p>				
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Fully Implantable Wireless Neural Prosthetics for Bionic Limbs

As presented Sunday 2009.10.18 at the Society for Neuroscience conference in Chicago and reported by Technology Review:<blockquote>Scientists at Brown University have developed an entirely implantable version of a neural prosthesis used to translate neural signals from the brain. The ultimate goal is to use this kind of device to allow severely paralyzed people to control a computer or a robot limb with their thoughts.

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By 2040 we will be able to upload our brains ...

You don’t have to believe in gravity or in quarks in order for both to fully define your very existence. So feel free to believe how you choose.<blockquote>“People can argue about it,” says Kurzweil, relaxed as ever within his aura of certainty. “But when it comes down to accepting each step along the way, it’s done really without much debate.” </blockquote>

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BCI Games - COTS Brain Computer Interfaces

Remember when you thought that Flight Simulator, complete with joystick, was “just a toy?” Turns out, actually, we were training UAV jockeys, right?

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It's Official - Water Found on the Moon

I know you know. But this is just too momentous to escape personal archives.<blockquote>Since man first touched the moon and brought pieces of it back to Earth, scientists have thought that the lunar surface was bone dry. But new observations from three different spacecraft have put this notion to rest with what has been called “unambiguous evidence” of water across the surface of the moon.</blockquote>“Humanity may be granted an unexpected giant step to the stars. But we must have the guts to actually take it.” Video Credit: Thomas Lucas & Dave Brody

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Futuretechture Apparent Complexity Of Human Mind

#futuretechture Apparent complexity of human mind no barrier to building replica brain http://bit.ly/VIBJg

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Apparent complexity of human mind no barrier to building replica brain

Yesterday in PhysOrg, as referred by KAI

A model that replicates the functions of the human brain is feasible in 10 years according to neuroscientist Professor Henry Markram of the Brain Mind Institute in Switzerland. ‘I absolutely believe it is technically and biologically possible. The only uncertainty is financial. It is an extremely expensive project and not all is yet secured.'
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Bionic brain chips could overcome paralysis

New Scientist:<blockquote>It will be a long time before these chips can become a mainstream treatment: the US Food and Drug Administration requires as much as 10 years of animal testing before a chip can be deemed safe enough to be implanted in human brains. That means the latest technology, such as chips that stimulate tactile sensations in the brain, will need extensive testing before clinical trials can begin.

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Medtronic starts trials for closed-loop brain implant

EETimes:

Medtronic Inc. has started trials in monkeys of an implantable device that can automatically sense and respond to brain waves.
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Augmented Reality in a Contact Lens

IEEE Spectrum: A new generation of contact lenses built with very small circuits and LEDs promises bionic eyesight

These visions (if I may) might seem far-fetched, but a contact lens with simple built-in electronics is already within reach; in fact, my students and I are already producing such devices in small numbers in my laboratory at the University of Washington, in Seattle [see sidebar, "A Twinkle in the Eye"]. These lenses don’t give us the vision of an eagle or the benefit of running subtitles on our surroundings yet. But we have built a lens with one LED, which we’ve powered wirelessly with RF. What we’ve done so far barely hints at what will soon be possible with this technology.

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Fusion of Nanocircuits, Bio-membranes - Toward a Hybrid Cell Wall?

Bruce Lipton, The Wisdom of your Cells – “the cell wall is a computing device” – must be going ga-ga right about now, on this news.
<blockquote>“This is much the same thing that happens in a cell,” Stroeve explained. “Now that we can open and close these channels, we can, in effect, regulate our system’s ability to sense chemicals in its environment.”</blockquote>Even if, as some critique, Lipton goes a bit too far implying the degree to which conscious thought can CONTROL that cellular interface, the basic mechanics of how cells work is fairly incontrovertible. This is not to imply that we “get it” to the extent necessary for inorganic tissue and organ genesis, en route substrate independence; but it’s certainly an incremental step in the right direction.

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The next 12 messages constitute an experiment

The next 12 messages constitute an experiment. When complete, I hope that the topic provokes some thoughtful follow-on discussion.

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12-tweet series experiment in the queue for our beloved public timeline

Heads up, friends. Have a lil’ 12-tweet series experiment in the queue for our beloved public timeline. OBJECTIVES: illustration, outreach.

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12-tweet experiment

This concludes the previous 12-tweet experiment, illustrating an observation by emulation.

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Rt Salimismail Just Saw A Singularityu Team

RT @salimismail Just saw a #singularityu team project demo on car-sharing - they modified a car and unlocked/started it with an iphone!

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CALO - Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes

Thanks, as so often is the case, to the EpiSupraMeta KurzweilAI for the tip:

CALO stands for Cognitive Assistant that Learns and Organizes. The name was inspired by the Latin word calonis, “soldier’s servant,” because DARPA’s goal is to create a cognitive system that can reason, learn, and respond to surprise in order to assist in military situations.
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We’re all still standard human beings. For now.

However, this may not be the case for very much longer; hence the imperative to make some key policy and personal decisions, right now. What manner of individuals and society are we to become? As @cascio writes, in The Atlantic Monthly:<blockquote>if the next several decades are as bad as some of us fear they could be, we can respond, and survive, the way our species has done time and again: by getting smarter. But this time, we don’t have to rely solely on natural evolutionary processes to boost our intelligence. We can do it ourselves. The Nöocene awaits.</blockquote>

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Open-innovation models overcome constraints of corporate hierarchies

Thanks as always to the prolific team @KurzweilAINews:<blockquote>“There is this misconception that you can sprinkle crowd wisdom on something and things will turn out for the best,” said Thomas W. Malone, director of the Center for Collective Intelligence at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. “That’s not true. It’s not magic.”</blockquote>Read the full article from the New York Times.

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Futuretechture Open Innovation Models Overcome

#futuretechture Open-innovation models overcome constraints of corporate hierarchies http://tr.im/t9QG

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Why Neuro Security Matters

Wired Science (via KurzweilAI):

For example, the next generation of implantable devices to control prosthetic limbs will likely include wireless controls that allow physicians to remotely adjust settings on the machine. If neural engineers don’t build in security features such as encryption and access control, an attacker could hijack the device and take over the robotic limb.

Not to mention a couple generations beyond devices such as OCZ’s Neural Impulse Actuator (nia):<blockquote>Predefined profiles included with the software allow the gamer to develop their own nia—memory to launch the desired behavior of their character and shoot with the “blink of an eye”, without lifting a finger. </blockquote>Also, listen to Zack Lynch explain it.

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A Semantic Network Representation of the Open Mind Common Sense Project

From the site:<blockquote>“ConceptNet aims to give computers access to common-sense knowledge, the kind of information that ordinary people know but usually leave unstated.

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Futuretechture A Semantic Network Representation

#futuretechture A Semantic Network Representation of the Open Mind Common Sense Project http://tr.im/sodQ

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Rapamycin & Caloric Restriction Findings

As reported in WSJ and Technology Review:<blockquote>A study published Wednesday found that rapamycin, a drug used in organ transplants, increased the life span of mice by 9% to 14%, the first definitive case in which a chemical has been shown to extend the life span of normal mammals.

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single mega-colony of ants has colonised much of the world

RT @Bill_Romanos RT @clazaro single mega-colony of ants has colonised much of the world scientists have discovered http://tinyurl.com/maj4sr

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Neurotechnology Industry 2009 Report

Yikes. The Neurotechnology Industry 2009 Report been out for months and I'm just now posting? Don't let that be an excuse to not click and obtain immediately -- or sooner, if already fully cog-chipped-up, of course. ;-)

Drugs, Devices and Diagnostics for the Brain and Nervous System: Market Analysis and Strategic Investment Guide of the Global Neurological Disease and Psychiatric Illness Markets

Now in its fifth year, The Neurotechnology Industry 2009 Report is an expanded and updated 480 page report of brain and nervous system markets and treatments. It is the only publication to provide a unified market-based framework to help investors, companies and entrepreneurs easily identify opportunities, understand the competitive landscape, determine risks and understand the dynamics of rapidly changing CNS markets.

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“We’ve been able to enhance integration of the coating with [body] tissue,

“We’ve been able to enhance integration of the coating with [body] tissue, allowing more people to accept implants.” http://tr.im/hapatite

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Real Discrimination Against Digital People

And many other leading edge topics in this Summer Edition of H+ Magazine, now on news stands like this one everywhere.<blockquote>I must have lost half of my potential contracts because the company wouldn’t deal with an anonymous avatar.</blockquote> Why Digital People?

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Cortical Dynamics and Perception

Cortical Dynamics and Perception

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How many simulated advanced civilization gods can you fit on the tip of an atomic-scale scanning probe manipulator?

File under “previously considered highly unlikely sources” for transhumanist philosophical spelunking? On the other hand, as more and more religions attempt to assimilate transhumanist principles into their respective canons; that can only assist the transreligious cause of transhuman progress, no?<blockquote>It’s true that if an advanced civilization could create a simulation indistinguishable from the natural universe, we very well may be in one. We may be brains in a jar, or batteries for robots. We can speculate about some meta-reality above our own, whether it be a computer program or an alternate dimension, but there’s no reason to think any of them might be true. Without any evidence, even if we are in a simulation, it’s more reasonable to assume that we aren’t.

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Futuretechture How Many Simulated Advanced

#futuretechture How many simulated advanced civilization gods can you fit on the tip of an atomic… http://tr.im/mXRn

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Picture of the day


Telegraph.co.uk: “If you have always wanted to be part of an integrated circuit board, Bare paint will make it possible. The special paint, created at the Royal College of Art, conducts electricity…” Picture: WENN

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Everything I Ever Wanted to Know About Mindclones

… but was afraid to ask. By the ever erudite Martine Rothblatt:

A mindclone is a software version of your mind.  He or she is all of your thoughts, recollections, feelings, beliefs, attitudes and values, and is experiencing reality from the standpoint of whatever machine their mindware is running on.  Mindclones are mindfiles being used and updated by mindware that has been set to be a functionally equivalent replica of one’s mind.  A mindclone is your software-based alter ego, doppelganger, or mental twin.

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Humanizing our Posthuman Near Future

"We should welcome with open arms the rich possibilities of technologically enhancing our bodies," reports Andy Miah in the Guardian this week, adding the important caveat, "just so long as we don't all end up looking, and thinking, and acting the same."

[Next month,] The European Parliament is set to debate issues surrounding smart drugs, cybernetic body enhancements, cosmetic surgery and more over the coming months to "establish an advisory committee on all aspects of human enhancement, the first committee of its kind."

After all "we have always been beings in transition," argues Miah, who think the key is to find ways to "support responsible use" of body modifying technologies.

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Cosmetic Neurology & Neuro Enhancers

Reprinted from NPR.org.<blockquote>Listen to Fresh Air from WHYY, April 20, 2009· In the modern world of busy schedules and busier lives, some people are turning to “neuro-enhancing” drugs to gain a competitive edge.

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How to Map Neural Circuits With an Electron Microscope

Coders and neuroscientists have teamed up to make a 20-terabyte map of every cell in the back of a rabbit’s eye. By comparing healthy samples with pictures of damaged retinas, these researchers can make sense of the diseases that cause blindness, and perhaps find ways to repair injured eyes.

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Eyeborg, Redux

This was metafiltered and reported by Wired over four months ago. Today, CNN is apparently defining an exciting and innovative new emerging trend for "news regifting" in mainstream media. As this human-computer symbiosis accelerates, external sources of information (TV's, iPhones, anything not jacked straight in) will become increasingly irrelevant. Or possibly repurposed in the short to mid term for reaching and conditioning The Outsiders who are not yet tuned in to the Global Cognition Hivemind.

Eyeborg

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Asimo Controlled by BCI

Relayed by Bill Romanos: [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fa16ewvpunY&rel=0&color1=0xe1600f&color2=0xfebd01&hl=en&feature=player_embedded&fs=1] Also led to discovery of Refrigerator Sized BMI (Not Body Mass Index, Brain Machine Interface) ;-): [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6yI_4FHSKI&hl=en&fs=1]

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Light-activated brain-machine interface

Researchers develop ‘wireless’ activation of brain circuits

"The long-term goal of this work is to develop a light-activated brain-machine interface that restores function following nerve or brain impairments," Strowbridge says. "The first attempts to interface computers with brain circuitry are being done now with complex metal electrode stimulation arrays that are not well suited to recreating normal brain activity patterns and also can cause significant damage."

Are you sure you still want to argue about reasonable-resolution access to the I/O ports by 2020? Didn’t think so. ;-)

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Human-Machine Symbiosis More and More Inevitable

Question: How much does it suck when your neglected hobby blog suddenly breaks because some random cool chunk of code for DIIGO or something, ceases to work and hoses everything up for who knows how long?

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SRI's Revolutionary 1968 Demo - A 40th Anniversary Celebration

Media X and SRI International invite you to join us in a very special event on Tuesday, December 9, 2008 from 1:00 to 5:30 p.m. at Stanford University’s Memorial Auditorium.

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TAT2 could find applications in general ageing

NewScientist reports:<blockquote>“We are fairly confident at this point that TAT2 won’t enhance cancer development,” says Effros, although she cautions that further trials are needed to confirm this.

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SALT - Synthetic biology debate next MONDAY Nov. 17

Date: Wed, 12 Nov 2008 09:31:24 -0800 Subject: [SALT] Synthetic biology debate next MONDAY Nov. 17

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Eidolon A.I. talks about the Singularity, Judgment Day, TLP

More highlights from the year that was 2008:

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HUD-tact Lens

From the How-Did-I-Ever-Miss-This Dept:
<blockquote>“Looking through a completed lens, you would see what the display is generating superimposed on the world outside,” said Babak Parviz, a UW assistant professor of electrical engineering. The shape of each tiny component dictates which piece it can attach to, a microfabrication technique known as self-assembly. Capillary forces – the same type of forces that make water move up a plant’s roots, and that cause the edge of a glass of water to curve upward – pull the pieces into position. </blockquote>

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Stanford AIIDE Conference

AIIDE is the definitive point of interaction between entertainment software developers interested in AI and academic and industrial AI researchers.
<blockquote>Founded in 1979, the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) (formerly the American Association for Artificial Intelligence) is a nonprofit scientific society devoted to advancing the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines.
</blockquote>
Gamasutra - In-Depth: Stanford Conference Explores The State Of AI
<blockquote></blockquote>

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Music, Language, and Memory

Studio360 Reprint:<blockquote>A recent study of stroke victims with damaged language abilities found that those who listened to music recovered better than those who listened only to audio books. Music plus words trumped words alone. Studio 360’s Gideon D’Arcangelo has witnessed this phenomenon first hand–with his mother Sylvia.</blockquote>

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Oversimplifying the Singularity - Summit 3.0

After greatly enjoying the first two Singularity Summits, I’m not attending today’s 3.0 version. One reason is that I think I understand all the basic principles sufficiently that I need to focus on contributing rather than flocking and following. Another is the price tag. I’m confident enough in my own existence now that I just don’t need to pay the $500 self-validation fee. If I haven’t created something worthy of an invitation to the stage yet, then I need to keep working until I do. I don’t consider it good enough to just be a groupie to any set of human beings. I expect more of myself. I expect myself to innovate, create, collaborate, and contribute. Isn’t that the primary objective of this whole movement, anyway? Uplift and Inclusion? I should hope so. If not, I may soon find myself an apostate, once again. Don’t read this wrongly, I have not done anything sufficiently noteworthy this year to have earned my way into the club. I’m not complaining, I’m motivating myself to do more and do better so as to achieve something worthwhile to the cause of human betterment.

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Inducible and Selective Erasure of Memories in the Mouse Brain via Chemical-Genetic Manipulation

Didn’t we already wrap up human clinical trials last year? Oh, not that you recall? Are you sure? :-)

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Of Black Swans and Markets

Oct. 14 (Bloomberg) -- Investors advised by ``Black Swan'' author Nassim Taleb have gained 50 percent or more this year as his strategies for navigating big swings in share prices paid off amid the worst stock market in seven decades.
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World's biggest computing grid launched

Published: 13:07 EST, October 03, 2008 World's biggest computing grid launched


“Open Science Grid members have put an incredible amount of time and effort in developing a nationwide computing system that is already at work supporting America’s 1,200 LHC physicists and their colleagues from other sciences,” said Open Science Grid Executive Director Ruth Pordes from DOE’s Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory.
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Towards a cortical microcircuit model

Tomorrow - Wednesday, Oct. 1st at 12 noon Dileep George, Numenta

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Gravity Probe B Secures Alternative Funding To Complete Science

================================ GP-B STATUS UPDATE – September 26, 2008 ================================

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how thinkingtom linked plurk to twitter

via plurk - metavalent wonders how thinkingtom linked plurk to twitter.: metavalent wonders how thinkingtom .. /p/1rn83

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this might be one way to do it snipr.com/34xbg

via plurk - metavalent thinks this might be one way to do it snipr.com/34xbg: metavalent thinks this might b.. /p/1rndi

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plurkosphere, plurkspace, plurkland

via plurk - metavalent has joined the plurkosphere, plurkspace, plurkland.: metavalent has joined the plurko.. /p/1rmok

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InfoViz Art - Genome Valence

From the Oldies But Goodies file: [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyvL37bpk9c&hl=en&fs=1]

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Clarification on Commercial Hemp

In rapid fire context of live Science Friday show in SL, I made a couple of factual transposition errors that require correction here.

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Ug, Bigfoot again

Why would anyone print word ‘bigfoot’ prior to SEEING THE BODY? Utterly incomprehensible.

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Press Conference Comment

Toss the carcass on that “press conference” table and the debate is over. Delays just milk the media for 15 mins fake fame.

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Dreamhost Slashdotted

In more prevalent news, looks like dreamhost is fairly slashdotted at the moment, sorry for site’s laggy non-responsiveness. Workin on it!

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Second Life Release Candidate Viewers for Mac

Might help any SL friends who bother to come back after this afternoon’s network issues. Ug, always at the most inconvenient time, huh? Wish we could justify more bandwidth or a dedicated server, but until some kind of revenue model justifies that, I can only thank you for the patience and hope this SWF helps to illustrate where to get the RC SL Viewer described in-world today. Feel free to post a comment if any questions.

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We Command the Lightning's Hand

A little Science Friday fun for those Trailing Boomers who might recall that dreaded Kansas epic anthem.

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Teaching MATLAB in 7th Grade

At last week’s SFSL, during the Kiss My Math segment, I’d offered that some educational institutions and researchers are beginning to challenge the somewhat puritanical convention that rote memory is the best and more effective cognitive skill we can develop in our children.

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2000 Votes Needed For the "Undergrads Against Age Related Disease"

From the site:<blockquote>The Methuselah Foundation needs your help: we are supporting a project named “ Undergrads Against Age Related Disease,” submitted as part of the Amex Members Project initiative. In order to move forward, this project must obtain more than 2000 votes in the next 2 weeks - by September 1st, 2008.</blockquote>

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Next, while the idea of substrate independence is fairly well known, how much serious thought has gone into exploratory descriptions of the subjective experience? Are there more and less Adaptive Transitional Psychologies for Substrate Independence?

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An Alternate Singularity Posthuman Future Past

The content of this video probably presents a somewhat politically incorrect perspective, but one that is not lacking its measure of evidentiary fact; hence, the vehicle of HUMOR in hopes of lessening direct impact. There is clearly wide variation within the human species, yet addressing matters of uplift within our own ranks is not only awkward, but surely considered the height of hubris to some. All the more reason to courageously engage the matter sooner rather than later, IMHO. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sf8R5ZlDiJg&hl=en&fs=1&rel=0&color1=0xe1600f&color2=0xfebd01] Next, while the idea of substrate independence is fairly well known, how much serious thought has gone into exploratory descriptions of the subjective experience? Are there more and less Adaptive Transitional Psychologies for thriving in a Substrate Independent state? As is so often the case, humor might provide effective inroads to thinking about otherwise difficult to consider topics. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEjTXX2rHgA&hl=en&fs=1&rel=0&color1=0xe1600f&color2=0xfebd01]

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Inventing a Hyper Macro Redefraggregation Engine of All Things

Let’s see … how many years has Gmail been “beta” now? I don’t know and have stopped caring.

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Posthumanism - Retail Box Set Edition

To most, CNN.com is likely still considered about as “mainstream” as one can get, even if simultaneously raising once again the question of whether or not the very concept of “mainstream media” itself can exist for much longer.

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The Next 5,000 Days

Personally, I’d use the word co-existent rather than co-dependent. By 2040, we will be indistinguishable from it and it from us; at least for the most adaptive.

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Expanding Literacy

I suppose it is the stereotypes that most annoy me here. Demographically, we look very much like the scene depicted in this story. Two young adults and we are in our late 40’s and early 50’s as well.

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Are transhumanists idol worshippers?

Excerpt from latest of Russell Blackford’s crisply composed reviews of the six articles about transhumanism in June’s edition of The Global Spiral. I’m not sure if Blackford is simply being polite in omitting mention of Don Idhe’s transparent religious fundamentalism by use of the encoded christian pejorative “idol.” In that faith tradition, idolatry is the worst of all sins, breaking the first of the fundamentalist commandments: thou shalt have no gods before me. So in using such a word, Idhe is not simply critiquing, he is overtly demonizing. Nevertheless, Blackford is far more than civil, apparently choosing instead to accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative. Class act.<blockquote>Surely there is at least some tempation for transhumanists to imagine perfect, zipless enhancement technologies that are unlikely to come to pass. However, it by no means follows that we should abandon or forbid all attempts to devise enhancement technologies, any more than our inability to emulate the grace and freedom of birds was a reason to abandon or forbid efforts at powered, heavier-than-air flight.</blockquote>

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Plurk Testing

via plurk - metavalent will be watching for this plurk on twitter.: metavalent will be watching for this plu.. /p/1rnp8

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Mars Phoenix Tweets - "We Have ICE!"

Yes, a week late on the uptake here, but simply must be acknowledge by all aspiring posthuman extraterrestrials. Wired Science from Wired.com reports:<blockquote>There is water ice on Mars within reach of the Mars Phoenix Lander, NASA scientists announced Thursday (7/17/2008).</blockquote>

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Functional Nature and the Posthuman

The 1337 593@K blog advises, “In case of n00bs, press ALT+F4 to eject.” Hilarious! That alone provoked me to actually read the latest post. (Oh, and Mac n00b5, go ahead and hit Command+Q right now to “Q”uickly refresh the screen). LOL!

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What if all our something is actually the larger context's nothing?

What if the vast majority of matter turns out to be dark matter and everything we are ever capable of observing turns out to be the minority missing bits from the dominant dark’s perspective? These questions are externalities to the actual subject of the posted article, but in any case:<blockquote>Good science requires a willingness to take anomalous observations seriously and to question even our most deeply held assumptions about the world.</blockquote>Without, of course, throwing out every previously won theory for every slightest anomoly. NewScientist adds that Thomas Kuhn wrote:<blockquote>By ensuring that the paradigm will not be too easily surrendered, resistance guarantees that scientists will not be lightly distracted and that the anomalies that lead to paradigm change will penetrate existing knowledge to the core.</blockquote>SOURCE: New Scientist Space Blog: Are we living in a giant cosmic void?.

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Experiments in Humming Human Stigmergy

Awesome fun from Avant Games That Give a Damn. My brain is exploding simply contemplating the multivariate experimental levels of interaction, cooperation, signaling, and I don’t even know what else yet … all taking place within the context of this alleged game. Something DANGEROUS is happening here, I don’t know what it is yet, but it’s AWESOME DANGEROUS … dangerous to the status quo … dangerous to any baseline context accepted as elemental to any modal interpretations of reality.

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Why Pay Attention to Ben Goertzel?

While it is absurd to reduce such questions down to a single proof statement, I also think it’s fairly common for humans to light upon representative moments that both evoke such questions and justify their over simplified responses. Even if, in strictly empirical terms, we present a single anecdotal observation – an over simplified slice of data that seems to be offered as justification for a sweeping generalization – sometimes such micro samples can indeed condense and convey a great deal of both useful and accurate information. Or so I contend in this case, without venturing into an exhaustive philosophical defense, so as to actually arrive at and communicate the point of this post within the precious average 1 minute and 48 seconds (according to present site analytics) that I apparently have to communicate, today.

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First Conference on Artificial General Intelligence

If you haven’t already found them elsewhere, you definitely do not want to miss the videos from AGI-08, the seminal AGI event of our time. Of course, no sooner did the inaugural conference end than the next steps of the journey begin:<blockquote>Continuing the mission of the highly successful first AGI conference (AGI-08) that was held at the University of Memphis in March 2008, AGI-09 will gather an international group of leading academic and industry researchers involved in serious scientific and engineering work aimed directly toward the goal of artificial general intelligence.

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2008 State of the Future

Looks like a pretty good deal for $49.95 plus shipping:<blockquote><ul><li>2008 State of the Future paperback with CD-ROM.</li><li>CD contains about 6,300 pages of research behind this print edition.</li><li>Includes Millennium Project’s 12 years of study and analysis.</li><li>Additional new updates and improvements.
</li></ul></blockquote>

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Network for Open Scientific Innovation

Apparently, it’s Open Source and Open Science day today. This leads me to begin thinking about how we might apply similar principles to economics. <blockquote>The Network for Open Scientific Innovation is founded upon the belief, no, the unshakeable certainty, that creativity, love, and intelligence can solve any problem. Recent years have seen technological revolutions in informatics, communications, and the life sciences. Sadly, this rapid progress has not been matched by a revolution in the democratization of scientific problem solving.</blockquote>While it can be argued that interdisciplinary interpolation is often fraught with opportunities for false analogies and preconceived, hyperbolic, or frenetically idealized biases based upon what we wish would transfer over, but will not or can not cross the chasm between disciplines – enough good has come from breaking the mold with such thought experiments as to continually draw me back into the fray. As always, one must know one’s own cognitive Risk Profile and Time Horizon for achieving one’s own net Return On Intelligence objectives.

What is it that I hope to achieve via employment of my unique intelligence? Hmmm, interesting question, maybe.

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Research bots leverage open-source for child-like intelligence

Compared to fixing the monopoly money economy – let alone architecting a sustainable long term post-scarcity economic system – the accelerating emergence of open source AGI-infused bots is looking fairly achievable, isn’t it?

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The End of Laissez-Faire Capitalism 2.0

This may seem boring and not very posthumanish; however, this year I’ve attempted to begin explaining, in compulsory blog-like intermittent sound-bite form, some of the reasons why the various architectures that will comprise a sustainable post-information-age, post-scarcity marketplace are absolutely Foundational Considerations for any sustainable posthumanish society.

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IEEE Spectrum Special Report - The Singularity

This month in IEEE Spectrum:
<ul><li>Human senses and body parts are increasingly augmented by a stunning array of high-tech devices.</li><li>Today, robots are pushing the envelope of humanoid design—they can play the violin, unload a dishwasher, and climb stairs.</li><li>To David Adler, the human brain is just really advanced nanotechnology.</li><li>Countervalent: One day a machine will blink into consciousness, but it’s just wishful thinking to believe that people could escape death by uploading their minds.</li><li>Vernor Vinge on the run-up to the singularity and what technologists can do to engineer the best outcome for humans.</li><li>Jaron Lanier, MIT professor Neil Gershenfeld, and technology futurist Ray Kurzweil.</li><li>Countervalent: How can we hope to create consciousness if we don’t know anything about it?</li><li>Rodney Brooks on why the evolution of superhuman intelligence will be a slow process.</li><li>Christof Koch explains how we can use visual illusions and scenes to explore the difference between our conscious and unconscious perception.</li><li>Machines of merely human intellect could put humans out of work if they were cheap enough. (In this blog, I continue to argue that this is HIGHLY DESIRABLE and that we must begin now to prepare for the End of Scarcity. I see the UNWILLINGNESS to make this adaptation as an equally consequential risk to any of the more sensational nanites gone mad scenarios).
</li><li>Candid assessments from leading voices such as Steven Pinker, Gordon Moore, Esther Dyson, and more.</li></ul><blockquote></blockquote>

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Save the Arecibo Telescope - Write to Congress

Begin forwarded message:

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Aging 2008 Preconference Talk

FightingAging reports:<blockquote>Researcher Attila Chordash is back from last weekend’s Aging 2008 conference, and he’s posted his video of biomedical gerontologist Aubrey de Grey’s presentation from a vantage point at the pre-conference public event.</blockquote>And Reason puts it ever aptly:<blockquote>[It’s] the concert bootleg scene, except with scientists instead of musicians, and no bouncers chasing down the camcorders - you’ll see what I mean when you watch it.</blockquote>

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The Fight to End Aging Gains Legitimacy and Funding

And perhaps equally significant, achieves the ever elusive Digg top post; a peerless metric by which to realize that the message is effectively reaching into the popular cultural consciousness. Well done!

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Same Old Subliminal Meme Stream

same old, same old. subliminally seeding the meme stream.

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Inspect Every Bit in Every Packet

Meet your friendly neighborhood cPacket.<ul><li>Complete Packet Inspection (CPI) combines payload pattern searching and flexible header classification on a single chip.</li> <li>Inspects every bit in every packet.</li> <li>Bump-in-the-wire system integration.</li> <li>Broad applicability: Monitoring and Visibility, Security and Response, Test, Measurement, and Lawful Intercept.</li></ul>Just thought you’d like to know. Stay tuned for screen captures of what Google does to you if you use Lawful Encryption like Anonymizer.com’s total net shield to protect your Lawful Privacy against Intrusive Deep Inspection of your every Lawful Private Bit.

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Aging - the Disease, the Cure, the Implications

“Understanding Aging: Biomedical and Bioengineering Approaches,” which will be held this weekend from June 27-29, 2008 at UCLA. This would be a great excuse to jump in the Cessna, Piper, or Cirrus for an impromptu weekend escape.

The conference includes a free symposium for the general public on June 27th focused on public policy implications of successfully postponing aging.

The scientific conference, on June 28th and 29th, will be focused on the science and technology of aging and its postponement.



<blockquote></blockquote>

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Jeff Hawkins - TED 2003

Despite some occasional detractors, the efficacy of Hawkins’ persistently catalytic socio-cognitive stigmergy is empirical amidst the present human population … and quintessentially metavalent.

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Spore Secretly Spawned?

So, apparently rumor has it that the long anticipated Spore Creature Editor has been leaked through some back alley darknet developer distribution channels.

Of course, clueful game marketers have long understood that such “leaking” can prime the pump for huge first day and first week sales. The naughty kiddies of all ages get to think they’re breaking the rules and being oh so rebellious by downloading such pre-release kits; yet, they are feeding right into the savvy internet marketer’s masterful hands. Hey, anything that helps to economically rewards software developers for such insanely difficult work is fine in my book.

In any event, I’d like to suggest that we each consider buying at least one copy of the game on day one; if not for ourselves, for some young gamer in our local social network. Why would I bother to encourge you to buy Spore on or around September 7? If not just for some fun, then in order to keep supporting increasing levels of sophistication in simulation and software intelligence.

Personally, I’m also hoping for peer reviews from folks like Ben Goerztle and the Novamente team because what many anticipate as Wright’s magnum opus seems to those of us in the peanut gallery to also engage some similar challenges of AGI-like behavior and human computer interaction from a Montessori play-like perspective. Are there vast differences? Of course. However, there could well be unexpected and welcome interdisciplinary discoveries, as well. If not on the HTM side, at least on the HCI side of the equation.

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Peer Review Fails Peer Review?

Financial Times reporting:<blockquote>Peer review guards the gates at both ends of the research process – obtaining money to carry out a project and publishing the results in a journal. Specialists in the field, working individually or as panels, identify flaws and assess the importance of the work; the reviewers’ identity is normally withheld from the author.

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Goodbye Usenet, it's been nice ...

In another textbook case of 88 bad apples spoils the entire 60,000 bunch (give or take, depending upon which usenet reflector you ask), “Time Warner is blocking all USENET access, entirely.”

Not that anyone even knows or cares what Usenet is any more, since it was assimilated by the GoogleBot and re-branded as Google Groups; still, The Death of USENET would be yet another ominous sign indeed for the future of open information sharing. Nevertheless, the politicians once again seem ready to not only throw out the naked babies with the bath water, but also the tub … and what the hell, might as well pull out the plumbing while you’re at it, too. If not for that running water, after all, there would be no naked babies in the tub in the first place, right? Only YOU can prevent the evils of indoor plumbing!

Look, I’m surely no defender of child porn; what a sad and complete waste of a life for the so afflicted; however, I do know how firewall rule sets work and we can filter at virtually any and every conceivable level of detail. So block or decommission the 88 worst of the worst if you must and leave the other 59,912 alone.

Yet again, John Perry Barlow’s 1995 Death From Above proves its prophetic place in net history, “And indeed we are talking about religion here … the monotheism of Control, the one-to-many system which has dominated the West at least since the Industrial Revolution, possibly since Gutenberg; possibly since Moses.”

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Postcapitalism - Prerequisite to Posthuman Social Efficacy?

It seems to me increasingly clear that there is relatively little hope for a collectively sustainable or individually fulfilling posthuman world without a post-industrial, post-information, post-capitalism-1.0 economic system to invigorate such a post-scarcity, post-diminishment future society. Perhaps things didn’t really matter much before the impending deluge became so apparent, because the technological accomplishments were too far off. However, After the Deluge, there will be plenty of looking back; but no going back.

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Google Health - Terms and Conditions

Introductory sardonics slightly updated on 6/9/08. :-)

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Clay Shirky On Cognitive Surplus

Even LOLCATS Beats Otiose 20th Century Media Model

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Ignore that Little Free Market Capitalist Farce Behind the Curtain!

"I am the great and powerful unfettered market!"

Oh, except when The Central Planners decide it needs some Fed Fettering to keep them in power! The quotation below is courtesy of the indomitable Dennis Gartman, whom I hold in the highest possible regard; and yet, inadvertently, he provides here the PRECISE RATIONAL for many of the private sector Resource Skew Correcting proposals made on this site.
<blockquote>We are now at the endgame of the sub-prime mortgage and derivatives problem, but it can be a very long, very frantic, and very volatile period as this endgame plays out. Prices of things are going to be harder and harder to discern, and volatility is going to leap skyward…

We shall applaud those in a position of power for having had the courage to act when they did. Had they not… had they remained “pure” free market theorists and allowed [Bear Stearns] to sink into oblivion, the very foundations of the western capitalist system might well have become unhinged.

That was not to be, nor could be, allowed. </blockquote>Could not be allowed? How interesting. The persistent mantra from the Right is always, “don’t meddle with the market, don’t meddle with the market, don’t meddle with the market” … UNTIL they’ve so skewed and constipated cash up the colons of the top two percent, that it requires Money From Helicopters to the masses and turning up the Printing Presses to keep the hoarders well lubricated.

ACTUAL CAPITALISM is once again sodomized at the alter of “orderly markets.” The Right can’t have it both ways. It can’t both spout the Kudlow Creed AND Fed Fettered Financing and retain any semblance of intellectual continuity.

I want to take the greatest of pains to not impugn the valiant personage of Mr. Gartman himself; in fact, it is the height of irony that the Good Gentleman’s statement emerged this week as the economic theory equivalent of Eliot Spitzer’s squeezebox, “Kristen.”

We only really mean Free Market when it doesn’t hurt those of us holding all the cards; like Spitzer only really meant “ethics” when they didn’t apply to him.

The quotation above illustrates the height of economic theory hypocrisy, and the legendarily intellectually honest Mr. Gartman laudably concedes this to some extent in his eponymous letter; yet, he is apparently compelled to rationalize interventions by The Central Planning Committees out of survival of his own position in the machine. I do not fault him for this behavior, far from it. I only point out that this requirement that we each are forced to ultimately belie our own deepest convictions – out of threat of poverty and want – only goes to prove that the Wage Slave Trade presses well up the value chain … perhaps as high as the short end of the second percentile of liquid wealth hoarders.

Which is to say: perhaps even Mr. Gartman is in the same boat with us. Will the Good Gentleman perhaps consider the Giant PIFWOD Bomb or some derivation thereof, as a Private Sector method for correcting the unsustainable Privately Caused Resource Skews?

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Just Gimme the I/O Ports

If the inevitable human brain atlas project can just give us discrete access to the I/O ports, we can pretty much hack the gray goo sufficient to achieve scaffolding independence, which is a significant step toward substrate indpendence. From there, maybe we can finally gain enough time to go the rest of the journey.

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Positing a Posthuman Evolutionary Path

On a less serious note than the previous post, I haven’t really kept up with all the reading that I should have on this topic; however, I have tried to listen; all the while formulating what seem to me to be my own ideas (or novel synthetics, at least); though such are surely constructed of a Pollock smattering of conscious, subconscious, unconscious, and various memory-impaired excerpts of papers, blogs, and impromptu conference side-bar conversations.

This makes things somewhat more interesting, to the extent that I might be able to find out if the possible path below synchronizes with independent works that I have yet to discover. Of course, herein lies a conundrum. Nobody can ever prove that they DIDN’T read a particular book, paper, blog, or listen to that podcast while falling asleep or stitch together a splashcast of videos on the theme in question. This is by definition where the line is crossed in scientific observation.

Well, not until we can transparent proxy all the data streaming in on the I/O ports, anyway … optic nerve packet capture, cochlear wiretap, tactile Braille-stroke logger … so far, taste and smell can’t transmit thoughts the way the other three senses can, so we can let them pass … for now. So there may actually be a future desirable scientific use for such Total Brain Input Surveillance. We wouldn’t need Total Brain Surveillance … just Input Confirmation … to test independent brains capacities or tendencies to reach similar conclusions; or in this case, propose similar EXTRAPOLATIONS, based upon mutually exclusive observations of a given complex, shared environment.

Why would we even care about discovering such possibilities? Good question, I just now thought to ask it myself. Apart from the usual, “well, if it’s a component of the way things work that we haven’t figured out yet, it’s worth figuring out,” I don’t have a good answer. Let’s give it some thought.

In the mean time, annoyingly, I find myself too often speculating that if something like Cognitive Stigmergy is inherent to, or emergent among some deeply data-networked humans, we may be moving into territory where the uncomfortable analog to independently reproducible lab results may be independently derived perspectives, or independently synchronized forward-looking storyboards or scenarios. Extrapolations.

It seems reasonable to speculate that learning to act and interact beyond the sphere of our familiar embodied senses is not at all going to seem natural to most humans, much less comfortable, or even logical. How the hell do we even go about such an amorphously articulated exercise? See previous paragraph; but only ONCE, or you’ll be stuck in a loop, right?

Besides, I’m only experimenting with words in what appears to be a novel manner, in order to see what happens. Maybe nothing happens. Maybe we have to add pill number 262 to the daily regimen and just be patient.

One possible posthuman evolutionary path might go something like this:
<ol><li>Empathy (Seeing the World Through Others’ Eyes). This could actually take much longer than we realize and may be the actual present bottleneck to progress.
</li><li>Augmented Social Cognition. Overlaps with previous item, could help to drive down costs and accelerate mass production and distribution of fundamental commodity #1.
</li><li>Ending Aging. Losing entire congressional libraries worth of not just information, but KNOWLEDGE with every death, is not helping out.

</li><li>Adaptive Posthuman Psychologies. This may actually take longer than the next item; hence it’s relative ranking.
</li><li>Adaptive Economies of Abundance. Post the engineered-scarcity farce; pre effective substrate-independence.

</li><li>Selective Integral Consciousness. This, during the era of increasingly universal wireless implants,
coexisting uploads, etc. Sorry, but yes, there will be an unpopular
Darwinian Selective Weeding Out, here; though hopefully (and I think probably) self-selecting.
</li><li>Dawning of the Posthuman Age. A new evolutionary tree branch sprouts.

</li><li>Substrate Independence (first halting and foibled; volatile; even disastrous; then sustainable and scalable).

</li><li>Newly Emergent Specieswide Stigmergic Synchronization (as above, so below, vice-versa).

</li><li>Meta-Sentience of the post Posthuman Beman. I may be taking undue liberties with the terminology, but from what I’ve read and heard, beman seems to be post posthuman; way more trans-epi-meta. :-)

</li><li>Exploration of Infinity, Simulated Infinities, Designed Infinities?

</li><li>Oops! Was it all Intelligent Design after all? Just because there was never any superstitious singular deity to pin it on, doesn’t mean that something that acts-like or is in essence sub-nano Embedded Intelligence doesn’t exert the Designing Influence we witness flying in the face of base case Entropy!
</li><li>Something more that I can’t presently conceive of, though I’d be
happy to hear your perspectives. Perhaps we do meet our Intelligent
Designers and discover that they were us, all along.</li><li>On to the next question.</li></ol>Okay, yeah, I trailed off into the histrionic sticks a bit, but perhaps it conveys the general idea. :-)



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Radical Feminist Stigmergy

So it goes something like this … the men in society do their reproductive duty and immediately DIE. Yes, almost a perfect world right there, some may postulate! :-)

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ukS4UjCauUs&w=425&h=355]

Next, the sated Divine Earth Micro Mother enjoys decades of unencumbered Life Creation, ruling her domain in meditative solitude, safe in the bosom of a colony that mostly does NOTHING.

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Fifth Anniversary of Body 2.0

On Feb. 21, 2003 at TIME magazine’s “The Future of Life” conference, Ray Kurzweil presented a talk based upon this essay. Subsequently, the Lifeboat Foundation reprinted a nicely photo “enhanced” version of the article.

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TED and BIL's Excellent Experiment

At some point we realized we are all interesting people with worthwhile things to say, and it didn't make sense to rely always on centrally organized ways for spreading ideas. There is a time and place for traditional conferences, TED is a great conference, but perhaps a little emergence and anarchy is needed.

If you’d like to participate in the Social Graph experiment, your friendly aspiring AI referrer is Metavalent Stigmergy, stigmergy -at- metavalent -dot- com … hope to see you there!

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Tandem Quantum Teleportation and Memory

Excerpt: Researchers Demonstrate Quantum Teleportation and Memory in Tandem<blockquote>In research that may be a key step toward real-life quantum communication—the transmission of information using atoms, photons, or other quantum objects—researchers created an experiment in which a quantum bit of information is transported across a distance of seven meters and briefly stored in memory. This is the first time that both quantum memory and teleportation, as the information transfer is known, have been demonstrated in a single experiment.

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Diigo for Blogging

BBC - BBC Four Documentaries - Visions of the Future  Annotated

tags: metavalent

  • Finally, more and more versions of what Foresight and IFTF have been anticipating for years and with Next Big Future is on the leading edge of collating and distributing, today. There can't be enough of this kind of publiclly accessible and comprehensible information produced in the next few decades. Toffler's Future Shock is an increasingly looming potentiality; however, risks to systemic and widespread anomie can be mitigated through aggressive, lowest-common-denominator public outreach such as this series.
     - post by metavalent
In this new three-part series, leading theoretical physicist and futurist Dr Michio Kaku explores the cutting edge science of today, tomorrow, and beyond. He argues that humankind is at a turning point in history. In this century, we are going to make the historic transition from the 'Age of Discovery' to the 'Age of Mastery', a period in which we will move from being passive observers of nature to its active choreographers. This will give us not only unparalleled possibilities but also great responsibilities.
Note: The unaltered text above was created using Diigo's web annotation tools. I left the entry untouched in order to illustrate what that looks like. With some similarities to Trailfire, diigo promises to help further speed and simplify the adoption of the Annotated Web. Good stuff!
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A SENS Slam Dunk

I can’t possibly add a single word to improve this appearance by Dr. de Grey on the Colbert Report, but because humans can’t help but do so, my commentary is this: OUTSTANDING. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6nwvEnOmKJs&rel=1]

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A Case of Digital Homocide - You've been gDisappeared ...

From the “if I had a penny for every time I’ve ranted on this topic” department: A True Google Living Nightmare.

A similar thing happened to me on Yahoo two years ago. A normal user would never have a chance in hell of recovering their account. Alas, perhaps there are occasional benefits to fully embracing the weirdness and huddling close with the deviantly inquisitive and productive crowd. After all, it’s often such weirdos who actually create the breakthroughs, operate the complex data centers, stand guard over the critical BGP tables, batten down the root DNS servers, etc.

Still, if all this indistinguishable-from-magic grandeur isn’t in service of The User, then what’s the point, Program? “On the other side of the screen, it all looks so easy.”

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Darpa Pursues Neuroscience To Enhance Analyst, Soldier Performance

Aviation Week reporting:<blockquote>"… in the Darpa experiments, the computer is just a tool that processes brain waves, of which the human being isn’t even aware, and turns them into actionable information."</blockquote>Brilliant as a means for managing cognitive overload … for extending our ability to act and interact beyond our limited sensory sphere. I’ll have to update this post with link to lecture at UCB that explores this ESSENTIAL functionality for any aspiring metaposttranshuman. :-)

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From Here to There - Nanotechnology Roadmap

The potential for nanotechnology to "build molecule-by-molecule" has been greatly discussed with one question invariably being asked: How do we get from here to there?

Foresight Nanotech Institute and Battelle Unveiled a Technology Roadmap for Productive Nanosystems.

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Venter Institute Scientists Create First Synthetic Bacterial Genome

This was a major advance in the field of synthetic genomics. We now know we can create a synthetic organism. It's not a question of 'if', or 'how', but 'when', and in this regard, think weeks and months, not years.
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Top 10 Prospects for First Gen Transhumans?

The 10 Worst Jobs in America are also widely regarded as the “10 Fastest Growing Opportunities,” for Americans, though euphemistically characterized by economists as “Service Sector Employment.” Friends, this is a key transhumanist issue, if not THE fundamental issue. If we aren’t smart enough to architect a transcapitalist society that provides for the richest expression of individual transhuman aptitudes while affording all the “loser, lowlife transhumans” an Aspirational Wage that provides not just the opportunity to survive, but to think about, and act upon agendas for individual improvement. A “living wage” is another euphemism for bitterly bare subsistence, which implies perpetual stagnation, which notoriously undermines individual opportunity and thereby, social utility.

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Multitasking Makes Us Stupid and Slow

A rare, but worthwhile Slashdot pass-through, here, to November 2007 Atlantic Monthly’s The Autumn of the Multitaskers, which begins:<blockquote>Neuroscience is confirming what we all suspect: Multitasking is dumbing us down and driving us crazy. One man’s odyssey through the nightmare of infinite connectivity. – Walter Kirn</blockquote>To my mind, this is interesting in the context of enhancing our brains. Should we play to our strengths and enhance THOSE, or branch out and make multi-tasking actually possible? In either case, why or why not?

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Please Debunk These Equations and Expositions

Discovery of the Unified Field. Really? Unquestionably? Close enough to be worthy of some continued consideration, or wholly falsifiable and empirically disproved either mathematically, experimentally, or by both?

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How primate porn reveals what we really want

19 January 2008 - New Scientist<blockquote>WHEN four male experimental subjects were found peeking at explicit images of naked female bottoms on laboratory computer screens, you might have expected disciplinary action, a review of internet security, or at the very least a new batch of subjects. Not in this case. Instead, Michael Platt and his colleagues at Duke University, North Carolina, actually encouraged the voyeurs to keep looking. They set up a pay-per-view system and even tried bribing them to look at less desirable images, all the while monitoring their sleazy viewing habits in the name of science.

It won’t help to know that those bared rumps belonged to female macaque monkeys. Don’t jump to hasty conclusions, though, because the male subjects mesmerised by these images were macaques too. What’s more, the payments and bribes associated with these slide shows of simian smut were not financial, but rewards or forfeiture of fruit juices depending on what they chose to view.

You’ll also be relieved to hear that there is a serious point to the project. Primate soft porn may just help solve one of the central questions about how our brains work - how, faced with all the choices we have to make every second of every day, we weigh up the options and convert disparate information about them into a common neurobiological currency. The research could even unravel some of the mysteries of autism. Honest!

[Researchers] knew a lot about how we collect relevant information with our senses, and how we direct our actions, but almost nothing about how we link the two processes in the brain; how we evaluate the options we see and make informed choices about how to act.</blockquote>I’ve submitted a request to New Scientist for permission to reprint the whole article; but in the meantime, I think they may offer a trial subscription that would allow you to read the full article.

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Experiment - FeedWordPress Syndication Plugin

In cooperation with OnSingularity.com, the singularity community news ranking site, we’re experimenting with the FeedWordPress plugin and the ZoOoV feeds. Initially, it appears that the subject of new posts to OnSingularity are appearing in the blogstream, here, but they are not linking to either OnSingularity or the the post’s intended destination. Thanks for your patience while we experiment with this.

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Nanofactory or AGI — Which technology could cure humanity's many problems?

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Genes Linked to Parkinson’s Protection Identified by UA Researchers

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The helmet that could turn back the symptoms of Alzheimer's

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The World's Most Dangerous Idea

A key deadline is approaching for the World’s Most Dangerous Idea. If you prefer safety over liberty, the status quo over adaptive progress; then by all means, feel free to click on to the next fleeting glimpse. On the other hand, one may want to consider that:<blockquote>Francis Fukuyama, a member of the President’s Council on Bioethics, called transhumanism the “World’s Most Dangerous Idea.” He is not alone in his deliberate misuse of transhumanist ideas. There are dozens of organizations that use their multi-million dollar coffers [and pulpits] to spread anti-transhumanist memes and lobby politicians.</blockquote>It’s always a dangerous proposition to change the status quo; but when the the status quo itself becomes one of the biggest dangers to species survival and thrival, a population is generally reduced to two fundamental choices to facilitate self-preservationist change: Dangerous Actions or Dangerous Ideas.

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Transcapitalism - Essential for a sustainable transhuman future

Remember these from 11/25/07 and 12/1/07? Today, on 1/24/08, we learn more. <blockquote>With today’s speech, Mr. Gates adds his high-profile name to the ranks of those who argue that unfettered capitalism can’t solve broad social problems.</blockquote>Yes, comrades, phat Billy G is in da’ house.

Either Bill is paying attention to this lowly blog, or reason simply reaches the same conclusion, independent of the identity of the conscious exerciser thereof.

I vote for the latter, but thanks for the encouragement. Although, it is a bit uncanny that Gates agrees that we can do all this without changing the mechanics of markets, the foundational tenet of my proposals. We simply need Enlightened Free Agents to act upon their better consciences.<blockquote>Key to Mr. Gates’s plan will be for businesses to dedicate their top people to poor issues – an approach he feels is more powerful than traditional corporate donations and volunteer work. Governments should set policies and disburse funds to create financial incentives for businesses to improve the lives of the poor, he plans to say today. “If we can spend the early decades of the 21st century finding approaches that meet the needs of the poor in ways that generate profits for business, we will have found a sustainable way to reduce poverty in the world,” Mr. Gates plans to say.

In the interview, Mr. Gates was emphatic that he’s not calling for a fundamental change in how capitalism works. He cited Adam Smith, whose treatise, “The Wealth of Nations,” lays out the rationale for the self-interest that drives capitalism and companies like Microsoft. That shouldn’t change, “one iota,” Mr. Gates said.</blockquote>As humans transcend, economics simply must transcend. There should be a billion beta tests of all kinds of creative, productive, fun, and even entertaining methods and experiments for finally taming this historically harsh overlord of poverty and plenty.

The methods and means may be myriad, the goals remain the same, both here at home in America, and as responsible global citizens: Liberte, Egalite, Augmente, Fraternite.

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Does Higher Brain Function require Quantum Computing? [Google Tech Talk]

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Mapping the Most Complex Structure in the Universe - Your Brain

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To Real Steve Jobs - Tear Down This Wall

wow … for those of us lifelong learners in the post-academic world, iTunesU is utterly amazing.

i am presently watching/listening to some vintage HCI Seminars (Terry Winograd, Stanford) from 06 and 07 in the background while doing my daily grunt work; and discovering the genius of Joe McKay and Greg Niemeyer.  awesome … EXCEPT … iCan’t post a link to share the content with you, dear reader, because it’s tightly locked away behind Apple’s proprietary iTunes WALLED GARDEN interface!

even iTunes.Stanford.Edu is wholly complicit in reconstructing the walled garden … directing and compelling the explorer to download iTunes or No Deal. in stark irony, Niemeyer provides all the code to the amazing collaborative project.

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Why I Believe in Intelligent Design

  1. Because the “Big Bang” was also first proposed by a theologian, and emotionally and irrationally opposed by scientists who were all too ready to shoot the messenger; doing no better than their superstitious historical opponents. Personally, I find such intellectually bigoted behavior ultimately embarrassing; particularly when exhibited by those for whom I greatly prefer to hold in the highest possible esteem.
  2. I do not think we are “there” yet … but the various interdisciplinary efforts currently ongoing at the various layers of existential resolution. I’m not speaking merely of philosophy, but of existential layers of matter and energy.
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Like Humanity Waking Up From It's Own Dream

A quick experiment with some emergent Photobucket tools, sans proper attributions. This is a collection of images that I’ve collected over the past year or three, mainly as free associative guided imagery for some alleged eventual writing process that just never quite seems to happen.

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WTA Last Minute Left Coast Troop Surge

how much would it be worth to you to live 120 healthy years instead of just 80? what if we are on the verge of taking it even further than that? what if the difference between Getting There or not is dependent upon our actions, today? what if proposing, debunking, reframing, and clearly articulating the REASONS and MOTIVES for achieving such lofty goals were prerequisites to achieving and realizing the actual technologies themselves?<blockquote>The WTA has done a lot with a little. We have grown to 4,700 members worldwide, and transhumanist topics are increasingly part of mainstream debate, yet last year our budget was only $8,000. Now we want to see how much more we can do with more.</blockquote>the WTA is extending the reach of our matching grant program and i’d like to encourage you to explore the WTA and see if it meets with your ideals. what if just ONE PERSON could create an instant ripple that sends that goal-meter off the charts with just EIGHT HOURS left in the year? what if that person was YOU and your AIM,Facebook, Meebo, MySpace, Orkut, or StumbleUpon network? sound impossible? maybe. only we can decide what is or is not …

i can provide one more link to the match here, but it’s up to you to strike it.

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Catalytic Stigmergy

While the New York Times rightly points out that Innovative Minds Don’t Think Alike, it seems to me that if others can’t interpret the meaning of the tracks we leave behind, then we’re not being effective explorer-helper ants. In sharing our glimpses, we don’t have to make decisions for the whole colony or even for the worker ants in the immediate vicinity, we simply have to communicate – as accurately as possible – something about the current bit of terrain that others will find interesting, meaningful, thought-provoking, or novel. They, in turn, tend to either integrate it into their own context, or discard it as not presently helpful. Either outcome is useful; in fact, even an ambiguous outcome is useful as it could merit closer inspection by other explorer-thinker-tinkerers and meta-conceptual shapers. Later, I want to spend some more time merging colony-mind communications analogies with what we’re learning about memory formation in mammal minds. I know it may sound like a complete mismatch, at first blush, but my job is therefore to break it down as books like “Made to Stick: Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die” suggest.<blockquote>In their book, the Heath brothers outline six “hooks” that they say are guaranteed to communicate a new idea clearly by transforming it into what they call a Simple Unexpected Concrete Credentialed Emotional Story. Each of the letters in the resulting acronym, Succes, refers to a different hook. (“S,” for example, suggests simplifying the message.) Although the hooks of “Made to Stick” focus on the art of communication, there are ways to fashion them around fostering innovation.

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Nanotechnology on KQED QUEST

This 10 minute introductory segment aired last year on QUEST, but it sure beats reruns during the current writer’s strike.

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New Scientist Special Report on Nascent Transhumanism

From the Special Report on Death:<blockquote>As recently as a century ago, it was priests not doctors who declared a person dead. When in doubt, they looked for signs of putrefaction. As medicine advanced, however, it became apparent that death was not an event, but a process.

[F]or practical purposes an arbitrary line [has been] drawn. First it was taken as the heart stopping. Then came the notion of brain death and in the 1960’s this seemed like the way forward. For a while it was even considered foolproof: once activity ceases in the brain and brainstem you can never regain consciousness, and without intervention the body will quickly shut down.

But foolproof it is not and the fact that several hundred neurologists and philosophers are gathering next May for the fifth International Symposium on the Definition of Death shows this only too well.</blockquote>Read the full report at New Scientist.

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Connecting Innovators, Investors, and Corporations

Where will you find Cleantech, Nanotech, and BioNano innovators ready to step out of the lab and into the market?<blockquote>[At] the 2008 TechConnect Summit, June 3-5, 2008 in Boston, representing the world’s largest peer-vetted deal flow for technology Partnering, Investing and Licensing.</blockquote>Deadline for submission of IP and Venture proposals is 2/1/08.

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AGI-08 - First Conference on Artificial General Intelligence

The call for participation, proposals, and papers for The First Conference on Artificial General Intelligence (AGI-08) was officially announced yesterday. Very clean and impressive work of adapting the wiki software to this website.

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The Consciousness Cop-out

It’s far from the first time he’s explained this perspective, but during today’s 3rd Annual Terasem Colloquium on the Law of Transbeman Persons, the immortal Marvin Minsky reiterated the position that the term consciousness is really a cop-out. I was grateful to catch the last few hours of this event via phone-in conference call and equally grateful for the impressive transcription provided during Michael Anissimov’s impressive live blogging performance. Minsky’s position, as logged by Anissimov:<blockquote>I don’t believe there is such a thing as consciousness. Consciousness is a high-level word we use as an abbreviation for about 20 types of mental activities: remembering what we have recently done, reflecting on whether what we’ve done is consistent with our moral model, etc. I believe humans have used “consciousness” for several centuries as an excuse for not thinking about what’s really going on.</blockquote>Irrepressibly engaging Terasem maven, CyBeRever, and Lifenaut Martine Rothblatt wrapped up the session by extending and further developing some of the implications of Minsky’s view of consciousness and reiterating the now-familiar concept of transbemanism, juxtaposing that against the pros and cons of corporate personhood, and then proposing a new type of personhood test, derived from the current “real life test” required prior to gender change; as she put it, “Turing meets Freud meets Christine Jorgensen.”

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Implants for "Think to Search"

Ha-ha, funny-funny. On the other hand, if you believe that “think to search” isn’t coming, you’re not paying attention. Then again, we’ve long known that it helps to soften the blow for the earthling masses to make it a funny-funny ha-ha for awhile, first. Meta-Props to Dewayne for this one!

Credits: Geek Culture and Joy of Tech

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Gravity Probe B Update

Very Exciting! We attended the previous public presentation in April when Professor Francis Everitt, a very approachable Stanford University physicist and principal investigator of the Gravity Probe B (GP-B) Relativity Mission and his team, “shared what they have found so far—namely that the data from the GP-B gyroscopes clearly confirm Einstein’s predicted geodetic effect to a precision of better than 1 percent.” The privilege of being present among the handful of humans in that room during that announcement was clearly a high point in my own human experience, to date. Since that time, we’ve been patiently awaiting the results measuring the frame-dragging effect.

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I Never Thought Turning 80 Would Be So Much Fun!

Click for full size
Caption Reads: I Never Thought Turning 80 Would Be So Much Fun!

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A DNA Lifeboat

It never really did make sense to me that EVERY ANIMAL IN CREATION could be crammed onto a boat. Of course, with magic and mysticism, even the utterly absurd becomes obvious in the believer’s mind. It’s a tragically overvalent meme, for certain.

On the other hand, The Scientist suggests today that a DNA Barcode might be a way to record biodiversity AND keep us safe from otherwise unidentifiable toxic species in the food chain. Moreover, this repository could be made part of the suggested Lunar Backup Drive for planet Earth.<blockquote>Microbiologists have long been using short stretches of genetic material, such as the ribosomal 16S gene, to differentiate bacterial species, and taxonomists have used molecular data to complement ecologic and morphologic information for decades.

The global, standardized nature of DNA barcode, however, is only in its adolescence.</blockquote>Yet …<blockquote>Since 2003, several barcoding projects have probed the mitochondrial DNA of everything from birds3 and fish4 to leeches5 and mosquitoes,6 and they found a similar gap between intraspecific and interspecific variation. These validation studies follow a general formula: Take species that are already well described and delineated through morphology, ecology, and other characters, collect their CO1 barcodes, and see how closely the traditional classification matches with that derived from the barcode.</blockquote>And ultimately …<blockquote>Because it works with short segments of DNA, barcoding has the potential to quickly and cheaply identify processed animal or plant products that may pose a danger to public health. It may also identify and better control cryptic pest species, such as mosquitoes or fruit flies, which cause widespread disease or wreak economic havoc in many parts of the world. In the clinical setting, it also has the potential to rapidly identify biologic pathogens in ailing patients.</blockquote>Of course, these are only soundbytes, see the full article for details.

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Get Your Home Genome Kit in time for the Holidays

Find out more about Personalized Genetics at the ScienceRoll blog. Blog author Bertalan (Berci) Meskó is a Finalist for an Eddie Award in the Best Individual Blog category, where he writes:<blockquote>I’m a 23-year-old Hungarian medical student and I’m the author of the blog Scienceroll.com. I try to help medical students, physicians, medical librarians and health care lawyers to get closer to the world of Medicine 2.0. Medicine 2.0 is the combination of medical education and the tools of web 2.0. I share medical tools, sites with them; write reviews about web 2.0 based medical community sites and I’m also the co-organizer of several medical projects in Second Life. I help coordinating medical exercices for medical students and I also organize sessions in the Scifoo lives on scientific conference in the virtual world. I hope that medical professionals find my blog useful and innovative. Berci Meskó, Hungary.</blockquote>

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Molecular Map of Aging

Technology Review reports:<blockquote>“One of the key lessons of this work is that to understand aging, we need to be thinking not in terms of individual genes, but of networks of genes and systems of different organs,” says Daniel Promislow, a biologist at the University of Georgia in Athens, who was not involved in the project. The results, published this week in the journal PLoS Genetics, confirm the role of two processes believed to be major contributors to aging: slowed metabolism and increased inflammation.</blockquote> <blockquote>“It appears that the mouse has a mosaic of different things going on which may or may not be in synchrony with each other,” says Stuart Kim, a biologist at Stanford who led the work. These patterns of gene-expression changes aren’t clearly linked to oxidative stress–an excess of free radicals that damage cells–or other biochemical factors hypothesized to trigger aging, says Kim, so it’s not yet clear how they influence aging.</blockquote><blockquote>Kim’s analysis is likely the first of many analyses that will take advantage of the new database, dubbed AGEMAP. “The scale of this study is phenomenal,” says Promislow. “In some ways, this shows us where things are likely to be headed in coming years in terms of the kinds of experiments people will do to understand the genetic basis of complex traits.”</blockquote>With all this progress and promise, now is a great time to consider contributing to Stanford Medical Center or the Methuselah Foundation as part of your year-end tax giving program. After all, what greater and more valuable legacy could we possibly leave than longer, happier, healthier lives for our children and grandchildren, right? And if you really want to leave a legacy, you could consider setting a goal for 2008 to go to the head of the KLAS.

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What does Google mean by "Don't Be Evil" anyway?

It’s fairly clear that Google wants to be the repository of choice for all human genome information, seeing as it envisions itself the indexer and keeper of ALL the world’s information. This strikes mea as a responsibility that would warrant just a wee bit of additional due diligence beyond wooing in wonder at GOOG’s historical stock price charts. Don’t get me wrong, I bought in at $85/share myself; however, when it comes to preparing for the next stage of human evolution, maybe we would want to be just a little bit more careful than usual.

I thought it might make sense to revisit the storied Google Pledge to Not Be Evil.

Well, specifically, it appears to me that “don’t be evil” merely means no paid placement in the raw search engine results.

That’s about it. Such placement would indeed be less than democratic, at the very least, and Google promises to not do it. So if you read the prospectus excerpted below, “don’t be evil” apparently means more precisely, “we won’t do this one evil thing.” Beyond that, pretty much all bets are off, no?

But there is still great hope. So long as you trust Curly, Moe, and Larry to “do good things for the world” then you’re probably in pretty good shape and have nothing to worry about. I’m not suggesting who you should trust or how much to trust them, I’m just saying; well, a thoroughly informed investor always reads the prospectus:

<p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;">DON’T BE EVIL </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:-6px;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;text-indent:4%;">Don’t be evil. We believe strongly that in the long term, we will be better served—as shareholders and in all other ways—by a company that does good things for the world even if we forgo some short term gains. This is an important aspect of our culture and is broadly shared within the company. </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:-6px;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;text-indent:4%;">Google users trust our systems to help them with important decisions: medical, financial and many others. Our search results are the best we know how to produce. They are unbiased and objective, and we do not accept payment for them or for inclusion or more frequent updating. We also display advertising, which we work hard to make relevant, and we label it clearly. This is similar to a well-run newspaper, where the advertisements are clear and the articles are not influenced by the advertisers’ payments. We believe it is important for everyone to have access to the best information and research, not only to the information people pay for you to see. </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;">MAKING THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:-6px;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;text-indent:4%;">We aspire to make Google an institution that makes the world a better place. In pursuing this goal, we will always be mindful of our responsibilities to our shareholders, employees, customers and business partners. With our products, Google connects people and information all around the world for free. We are adding other powerful services such as Gmail, which provides an efficient one gigabyte Gmail account for free. We know that some people have raised privacy concerns, primarily over Gmail’s targeted ads, which could lead to negative perceptions about Google. However, we believe Gmail protects a user’s privacy. By releasing services, such as Gmail, for free, we hope to help bridge the digital divide. AdWords connects users and advertisers efficiently, helping both. AdSense helps fund a huge variety of online web sites and enables authors who could not otherwise publish. Last year we created Google Grants—a growing program in which hundreds of non-profits addressing issues, including the environment, poverty and human rights, receive free advertising. And now, we are in the process of establishing the Google Foundation. We intend to contribute significant resources to the foundation, including employee time and approximately 1% of Google’s equity and profits in some form. We hope someday this institution may eclipse Google itself in terms of overall world impact by ambitiously applying innovation and significant resources to the largest of the world’s problems. </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;">SUMMARY AND CONCLUSION </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:-6px;"> </p> <p style="margin-top:0;margin-bottom:0;text-indent:4%;">Google is not a conventional company. Eric, Sergey and I intend to operate Google differently, applying the values it has developed as a private company to its future as a public company. Our mission and business description are available in the rest of this prospectus; we encourage you to carefully read this information. We will optimize for the long term rather than trying to produce smooth earnings for each quarter. We will support selected high-risk, high-reward projects and manage our portfolio of projects. We will run the company collaboratively with Eric, our CEO, as a team of three. We are conscious of our duty as fiduciaries for our shareholders, and we will fulfill those responsibilities. We will continue to strive to attract creative, committed new employees, and we will welcome support from new shareholders. We will live up to our “don’t be evil” principle by keeping user trust and not accepting payment for search results. We have a dual class structure that is biased towards stability and independence and that requires investors to bet on the team, especially Sergey and me (Larry Page).</p>
In other words, there is also a class of stock that guarantees that Curly, Moe, and Larry hold all the cards and Common Share Holders are effectively locked out of the loop. It’s up to you to decide to what extent that complies to the “don’t be evil” creed, I’m just saying that, as common shareholder, you don’t really own any significant voting rights. Again, it’s not my place to tell you whether or not you should or shouldn’t be okay with that, but that is what we’re buying into with every share of GOOG.

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Left Behind - Posthuman Edition

Personally, I’ve long held many similar views to PJ Manney when it comes to the interaction between Geeks, Nerds, and The Normals; particularly the view that We’re Already Ascending and that evolution is perhaps more active than ever and there’s a reasonable likelihood that we are participating in it more actively than ever. This week on The Speculist Blogcast Radio, PJ talks about what I’ll take the alliterative liberty to restate as the radical need for Enhanced Empathy among Enhanced Humans. There are already masses of Americans, not to mention global citizens being Left Behind, in droves. Is this just part of the process that we’ll have to learn to cope with and offer one another peer counseling to overcome Survivor’s Remorse? Do we owe a debt to ALL humanity to extend the opportunity of uplift? Some argue that this obligation reaches even to our primate kin, or others. Or is there a healthy balance of empathy, somewhere along the spectrum, which enables us to be benign, if not benevolent posthumans, moving forward? One practical place to start is the city of Detroit, which nature is rapidly reclaiming, all the way into the urban core. It’s not exaggeration that significant portions of the once great industrial city look like something out of a post-apocalyptic science fiction scene. Are people, industries, and civilizations just naturally nomadic and we therefore should assist others in moving on, or do we have some obligation to large industrial settlements to ensure some kind of commercial infrastructure, in perpetuity?

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Antidepressant linked to longevity

BBC NEWS reports:<blockquote>In the study, detailed in [the] journal Nature, nematode worms were exposed to 88,000 chemicals in turn and mianserin extended lifespan by almost a third.</blockquote>

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Bandwidth? Bah! Who Needs It?

What friggin’ planet do these people live on? Nearly 2008 and in the earliest stages of the Race for Dominance of the Metaverse, and yet still these morons are peddling this pablum?<blockquote>“We need significant evidence that such a [100Mbps broadband] network is required and I don’t think it exists yet,” said Peter Philips, Ofcom’s head of strategy.</blockquote>Clearly, these people are DANGER TO SOCIETY and should be replaced immediately or sooner:<blockquote>“We are not facing large numbers of people today who are constrained by their bandwidth,” Peter McCarthy-Ward, BT</blockquote>Only a complete moron would ask something so retarded as:<blockquote>Will gaming be one of key drivers for increased bandwidth?</blockquote>Oh, I don’t know, will THIRST be one of the key drivers for WATER DEMAND in the world?

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NPR's Singularity Soundbyte for the Masses

Weekend Edition Sunday, December 2, 2007<blockquote>The idea of what Artificial Intelligence should be has evolved over the past 50 years — from solving puzzles and playing chess to emulating the abilities of a child: walking, recognizing objects. A recent conference brought together those who invent the future.

A recent “Singularity Summit” brought together those who imagine — and invent — the future.
</blockquote>Thankfully, Rick Kleffel from member station KUSP filed a reasonably representative report, featuring Sam Adams, Barney Pell, and even introducing AGI To The Public via the ever articulate Jamais Cascio of CRN & Dr. J. (James Hughes) of IEET!

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First Longevity Pill Entering Clinical Trials?

Technology Review reports:<blockquote>A novel group of drugs that target a gene linked to longevity could provide a way to turn back the clock on the diseases of aging. The compounds are 1,000 times more potent than resveratrol, the molecule thought to underlie the health benefits of red wine, and have shown promise in treating rodent models of obesity and diabetes.

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MWMD - Market Weapons Of Mass Dispersion

Little did he know, the Social Infrastructure was Already In Place for the stockpiling and emanant launch of MWMD … Market Weapons of Mass Dispersion.

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Life and Business in "The Imagi-Nation Age"

Okay, so I took a little liberty by inserting the hypen and tweaking the capitalization in the subject, but that shouldn’t diminish this timely contribution from UgoTrade, in the least:<blockquote>Rita pointed out that a key question facing people in the an age of mass media is how can you emerge and express yourself creatively and make a contribution?<blockquote>I think that the answer to that is becoming a conscientious global citizen in the most creative way possible, so that your art becomes your life [and vice versa]. In other words, you’re not creating music, books or paintings. You can, of course, and that’s a great way to spend time and express ideas, but if you approach your own life as a work of art, everything you do in that framework is something you’re creating, that others can watch and perhaps even learn from, and you can enjoy. The motion toward life as art is the hallmark of the artist of the conceptual age, the people age.</blockquote></blockquote>Wow. I can barely believe that someone actually GETS this, let alone articulates it so clearly. Perhaps there is indeed hope for humanity’s transcendence.

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What Makes Us Moral?

The deeper that science drills into the substrata of behavior, the harder it becomes to preserve the vanity that we are unique among Earth's creatures.

While clearly not the most rigorously peer-reviewed journal, the audience that Time Magazine reaches is an important one for discussing What Makes Us Moral, and articles such as this could partly address concerns about how to implement brain re-engineering to prevent humans from blowing themselves up over differences in superstition. It probably does sense to begin with less invasive software/meme-ware procedures such as Compelling and Accessible Rational Instruction before jumping ahead right away to nanobot routing table hacking of spindle and mirror neurons.<blockquote>Brain scans are providing clues. Animal studies are providing more. Investigations of tribal behavior are providing still more. None of this research may make us behave better, not right away at least. But all of it can help us understand ourselves—a small step up from savagery perhaps, but an important one.</blockquote>

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How to Economically Construct, Sociologically Embed, and Psychologically Detonate a Giant PIFWOD Bomb

Or maybe even a few dozen … or hundreds of them … in both urban and rural settings, all across America. Also, please note the ‘histrionics’ tag for this post and approach accordingly. Histrionic doesn’t necessarily imply a complete lack of merit; although analytical rigor may be sparingly folded in.

Update 11/25/07: Ug. Meant to save as draft late last night, so some important updates appear here if you happened to read this earlier.

It was during a sidebar conversation during the recent 2007 Foresight Unconference Vision Weekend, that I discovered I am an absolutely unapologetic Pay It Forward Whack-O’-Dough (PIFWOD) apologist; one who wholly believes that economic resources in the U.S. marketplace have become more than sufficiently skewed as to be ripe for the corrective market action of a 21st Century Henry Ford. If market forces truly do innovate solutions to market imbalances, then the market is well overdue for a PIFWOD bomb to really shake up the imperialist elitists. Ford’s PIFWOD was the $5 day. Ours could take a page from contemporary startup practices; but the intent and the effects will be the same as Ford’s: to raise the Modal Expectation and Experience of Prosperity and thus Activate Economies of Scale at markedly higher levels of consumption and value.

To backtrack just a moment, the mission slogan for PIFWOD requires and deserves attribution, but I’ll await the approval of the author of that phrase to disclose attribution. The essence of this idea is hardly new, although the present instantiation can only be blamed upon yours truly. And thanks to my loyal interlocutor, the aptly supplied moniker: Pay It Forward Whack-O’-Dough, was coined. It’s perfect, thank you, BW.

To recap, at the time of our conversation, I was thinking about a near-future world where resource scarcity is very close to becoming an utterly absurd anachronism; when reminding a sixth grader in 2034 that not long ago the entire economic interrelationship of the human race was based upon the principle that “resources are scarce” will result in the same “so what” stare that you get from today’s tweenies when you accidentally sputter something so curmudgeonly as, “you know, we didn’t always have an internet.” Whatever, Grandma, now STFU and go away. <blockquote>My fiscally conservative and sociologically liberal neocortex was mulling over something like, “To hell with complex and bloated government wealth redistribution schemes or transfer payments, surely we can do it much more effectively and efficiently through Democratic Free Enterprise.”
</blockquote>I know it sounds Dangerously Republicanesque, but think equal parts Steve Liesman’s “National Productivity Day,” (modified to apply to the entire last CENTURY of collectively unrealized productivity dividends); Larry Kudlow’s creed that, “free market capitalism is still the best path to prosperity;” Jesus’s, “don’t be a greedy prick or a mean asshole;” and Mohammad’s, “or allah will kick your ass, you shmo.”

It’s like … if Kudlow’s hero Brian Wesbury is right, then it’s high time for Market Participants to step up to the plate and create Rational Market Responses to the horrendously expanding economic discontinuities and disparities in America. You say you want to avoid the specter of bigger government, Mr. Wesbury? Then Step Up To The Plate and Do What You Claim Your Almighty Invisible Hand is best at doing:<blockquote>Correct this runaway divergence between the top 2% and the next 8% … and while you’re at it, follow-up with a measured approach to keep the other 90% in the game, as well.</blockquote>I’m not even going to argue whether not Obscenely Astronomical Wealth Disparity has become the norm in America, because only Idiots, Liars, and Megalomaniacs could possibly argue otherwise; and I can’t ever hope to persuade any of those. So this post ignores those statistical outliers and reaches out instead the the intellectually honest or at least the intellectually sort of trying to be honest.

I’m sort of trying, too.

It seems to me that RIGHT NOW … heading into the year 2008 … just one moderately enlightened business team who understands the intrinsically explosive power of dispersing more creative capital resources into the hands of more and more diverse, intelligent, and ambitious people; one team that shares the vision of establishing new economies of scale at the next level of Modal Prosperity; can replicate and amplify the positive disruptive effect that Henry Ford understood was required for the automobile’s success, early in the previous century.

In Ford’s day, everyday people required a significant bump in both consumption capacity and Baseline Prosperity Expectations in order to move from Horse-n-Buggy Norm to Automobile Norm.

“Everybody got to elevate from the norm.” – N. Peart.

I continue to believe that we are at a similar junction in history, right now. Except that today we see orders of magnitude greater implications for good and not-so-good; particularly as capabilities such as molecular nano-assembly and super longevity loom on the horizon. These things are happening right now, friends; like it or not and ready or not.

To once again brutalize the worn out Gibson classic, “The singularity is here. It’s just not widely distributed yet.” And when the very concepts of “scarce resources” and “brief lives” become utterly laughable, the whole deal will be about DISTRIBUTION. Who passes what resources through whom; when; how; and why?

To my mind, the “why” is retardedly obvious: so life doesn’t suck for the greatest number of humans possible. Answering the others may not be so obvious, but they too are soluble – at least, if we’re all as smart as we claim to be.

Of course, Henry Ford didn’t act alone in helping to usher in the Transportation Singularity; as it dide then, such a work requires a unique team to build and deploy the theoretical 21st Century Giant PIFWOD Bomb.

Yes, this whole thing sounds utterly absurd and borderline incoherent. However, the only thing more absurd and incoherent is to Do Nothing and continue on the trajectory of unsustainability and species self-mutilation.

In the draft scenario we chatted about at the unconference; I assumed a typical $100M payout on acquisition or IPO to a founder demagogue of a 70 person company; however, in the PIFWOD case the stereotypically vaunted Randian Founding Father or Mother figure (CEO) has to bring her or his distorted Atlassian ego down to earth and settle with walking out with a “measly” $30M instead of $100M while each of the other 69 employees walk with $1M. That’s the Pay It Forward Whack-O’-Dough, in a nutshell. Instead of one new uber-consumer and an army of ripped off workers who MADE your idea into a company, you get 1 right-sized uber-consumer and 69 mega-consumers.

The exact math isn’t the point … nobody is hung up on a particular percentage, here; what we’re hung up on is the absurd idea that ONE HUMAN’S CONTRIBUTION amidst any particular group of 70 is worth $70M while the other 69 see $50K-$200K. Of course, the current deployment of Golden Parachutes during this subprime mortgage meltdown makes factors of 70M seem paltry. Those packages are so utterly obscene as to provide all the Empirical Evidence any thinking person would need to support my claims of Unsustainable Imbalance of resources; thus necessitating either Free Market PIFWOD Bombs or the vastly more absurd – though nevertheless required in lieu of Capital Market Inertia – government interventions.

In the microcosm of a 70 employee startup – while the proportions are orders of magnitude smaller that Wall St. – the compensation disparities don’t even come close to passing a basic laugh test.

NO SINGLE INDIVIDUAL HUMAN amidst a group of 70 is SEVENTY MILLION TIMES more valuable to a COLLECTIVE CORPORATE entity. It’s simply impossible. Which is why we need to solve this fundamental issue before it BECOMES POSSIBLE … when enhanced and augmented human beings will conceivably possess AGI and other capabilities which, compared to the unenhanced branches of the evolutionary tree, COULD realistically be argued to be of 70, 80, or 100 BILLION times more value to a group of unenhanced hominids.

Considering a point in time during which the demonstrated capabilities and measurable value of some of us could conceivably diverge to such an extropian extent, it seems to me that we Absolutely Must take the greatest of care to provide for the monkeys from whence we sprang. There is a risk that if we don’t codify and institutionalize such norms BEFORE WE FORGET what it was like to be as we are now; the future may look more 4400-ish than we would presently care to imagine. 

It could very well be that if we are to preempt a pitiless posthuman peonage; to thwart a tragic transhuman tribalism; that we need to deal with the fundamental issue of distribution BEFORE The Great Leap Forward happens. Of course, if the GLF has already happened, one might reasonably hope that such ideas are at the very least an individual evolutionary psychological prerequisite to gaining uplift and entry into the leapt cohort.
<blockquote>We are the music-makers,
And we are the dreamers of dreams,
Wandering by lone sea-breakers,
And sitting by desolate streams;
World-losers and world-forsakers,
On whom the pale moon gleams:
We are the movers and shakers;
Of the world forever it seems.
– Arthur William Edgar O’Shaughnessy (1844–1881)</blockquote>

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The End of The Beginning

As of today, the subvalent domain name squatters have been displaced; so we can drop the emphasis on “.dot. INFO” in page title, site ID branding, and finally move forward as initially intended in the secondary plan. As always, it’ll still take a couple days for DNS to propagate globally. Meanwhile, the Great Leap Forward is already well underway … in SL, in FL, and mediated by scifi IRL.<blockquote>Maia Skouris: “You’re wrong mom. We are in control now. It’s better that way.”</blockquote>In other news, hooray for UBIK … the fictitious (see note 1) OTC “ubiquinone” nutriceutical supplement is dubbed the make believe human enhancement risk-mitigating solution!<blockquote>Jordan Collier: “The world will have to deal with us.”</blockquote>P.S. If these whimsical character quotations mean nothing to you, that’s quite alright; but for those who are among The 300 IRL and The 4400 in SFL (SciFi Life), I just couldn’t resist the post. :-)

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Android 101

Sure, the Android mobile communication platform is a long way from AGI, but I needed a reasonable excuse to keep messing around with Splashcast and this may at least qualify as an interesting diversion.

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Today's to-do list - go to the head of the KLAS

Yes, I suggested this just a few weeks back, but after learning directly from Senior Research Fellow Chris Heward at this weekend’s amazing 2007 Foresight Unconference Vision Weekend , it’s clear that participation in this seminal study should become an immediate pressing priority for everyone who considers themselves serious about longevity, SENS, transhumanism, posthumanism, extropian hold-outs, or whatever flavor or living-better-longer that you prefer. As a society and as a species, we desperately need this longitudinal data in order to better understand how to measure the nature and pace of aging in humans. Yes, I will certainly be signing up no later than Q1 2008, as my schedule allows me to make the commitment.

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DARPA Urban Challenge Winners - CMU

Absofreakinglutely Awesome.

Add metavalent's channel to your page

As reported by Advanced Nano, Stanford Racing was not able to hold on to its Grand Challenge title, falling just behind first place winners Tartan Racing from Carnegie Mellon. The great thing about prize-driven (no pun intended) technology competitions of all kinds is that entire industries emerge as big winners. Congratulations to all the participants; to even accomplish inclusion in such an impressively challenging event is a lifetime achievement worthy great individual and collective pride. Well done!

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Reliable Data in Times of Crisis

Quick Index for this Post:

Commentary: This is a very rare departure from the blog’s theme, but seems justifiable, given the urgency of the situation. Yesterday I linked to a fire status mashup on another blog that now appears to be sponsored by KPBS, complete with KML file for display in google earth. At the same time, the San Diego Union Tribune had a similar mashup, but with conflicting data. Finally, the Calfires.com web site now has a mashup. I haven’t taken the time to further analyze this latest site, but a friend and I both compared the first two sites yesterday, only to confirm that the sites had very different boundaries depicted for “voluntary” and “mandatory” evacuation zones.

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Predicting Alzeimer's

One might reasonably suspect that advances on individual fronts that battle age-related illness could also continue to shed valuable light on the meta mission of Ending Aging itself. Sometimes, novel techniques might be transferable; sometimes, novel perspectives. The history of science is replete with cases of unexpected gains in seemingly unrelated areas crossing over into other areas of particular interest.

Blood test takes step toward predicting Alzheimer’s - Stanford Medical Center Report Archive
<blockquote>Markus Britschgi, PhD, a postdoctoral scholar in Wyss-Coray’s lab, was
intrigued with the idea that proteins used by cells to communicate
could be measured in the blood to see what is going on in the body,
including the brain.

“This study made me realize that we should get away from this image of a brain isolated from the body,” said Britschgi, who is also a first author of the paper. “The brain is part of the body and so it’s connected in one huge network.”</blockquote>

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ISO - The Right Stuff for Longevity Research

About KLAS (Kronos Longitudinal Aging Study):<blockquote>What can be done to help understand aging and how to measure it? The KLAS program has created an operational definition of aging. The study defines aging as the slope of the declining part of the curve representing the change in global functional capacity. The goals of the KLAS project are to:

  1. enlist as many participants as possible in a longitudinal study of human aging;
  2. identify valid physiological biomarkers of functional capacity;
  3. demonstrate that functional capacity declines with age;
  4. develop a global index of functional capacity;
  5. measure aging rate by monitoring changes in the global index;
  6. test potential anti-aging interventions in a volunteer human population.

</blockquote>This ambitious and potentially groundbreaking program is not for everyone, so if you think you have The Right Stuff, go check it out and become part of the vanguard for extending human health expectancy to keep pace with an ever increasing life expectancy.<blockquote>All enrollees must be willing and able to commit to long-term study participation, minimum of three (3) times over six (6) years. The cost to participate in this study, $2,100.00 per visit, covers the actual costs of testing and reporting and is far below that which would be required elsewhere. Investigators recognize that this may limit the ability to recruit, however without longitudinal data, the study cannot succeed.

</blockquote>

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The Longevity Dividend and the Economic Burden of Chronic Disease

According to the Milken Institute, “It’s been estimated that $2.6 T was added to the U.S. every year, just due to the extension of life in the past century. Solving cancer today is worth $46.5 T to the U.S., and adds $125 T to the world economy” (queue up the 53:30 minute mark).

The way I presently see it, the flip side of the Longevity Dividend, is the Mortality Tariff. As a society, we pay huge unrecoverable costs as a penalty for living short, disease-ravaged, frail lives. Counter to conventional so-called wisdom that might view super longevity as some kind of starry-eyed whimsical pursuit, I would argue that the costs of mortality to society are so high that inaction to contain these costs is fiscally irresponsible. Of course, in recent years one of the most active and articulate champions for the cause of putting realistic costs upon the impacts of aging is Dr. Aubrey de Grey.

Having recently acquired a bit more clarity on the subject of SENS, thanks to his book Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Breakthroughs That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime, my ears immediately perked up when I heard Michael Milkin on Bloomberg TV today, talking about a minimum of USD $46.5 T (yes, trillion) economic opportunity for achieving longer, healthier lives.

What??? Someone on the semi mainstream financial networks talking about longevity dividends? I can’t quite call Bloomberg TV fully mainstream, but it is certainly mainstream enough among the relatively educated demographic of active investors who pay attention to this new source. So I consider this as a very exciting development.

I was happily taken aback to hear someone of Mr. Milkin’s stature putting a ballpark price tag on the Longevity Dividend, albeit through the lens of costs incurred by chronic disease; costs that are massively amplified by the unmitigated process of aging.

Of course, the mainstream media would likely do all they can to say, “this is the last guy you should ever listen to, look what he did 50 years ago!” Well, that was 50 years ago (or whatever), and this is now. People change. This is another key benefit of living radically longer lives … people gain even more opportunities to accrue instructive experiences, to learn, change, and grow – to become Better Humans. Nevertheless, we must be practical when considering the interplay of contemporary media and fearful human nature; Mr. Milkin is probably not the best poster child for pursuing the Longevity Dividend, but he’s definitely a valuable resource for the financial think tank.

Mr. Milkin is an extraordinarily smart guy, which arguably may have led to his former troubles in the first place. However, he’s long since marched to beat of a far better behaved drummer and while he didn’t explicitly use the Longevity Dividend terminology, he clearly made the case that the single most effective way to leverage U.S. and global market productivity is to make immediate direct investment in achieving LONGER and HEALTHIER lives. This strikes me as a Very Good Thing(tm) for SENS in general.

Moreover, it prompted the following idea: a SENS specific ETF. Exchange Traded Funds (ETF’s) are increasingly popular “baskets” of securities, which focus upon various market segments while distributing risk among the basket’s constituent components. ETF’s differ from Mutual Funds in ways too minute to detail here. However, if you wanted to invest in “emerging markets” using an ETF, you might select NYSE ticker EEM, the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index.

Could investors work with Dr. de Grey to identify a basket of companies to trade under a SENS ETF and thereby create a vehicle for direct investment in the companies that are working within any or all of the Seven specific SENS? (As a curious aside, the NYSE ticker SENS is either orphaned by Sentex Sensing Technology Inc., or already belongs to CardioMEMS Inc. if you believe Barron’s.) No matter. It would be nice to get the perfectly branded ticker, but hardly a deal breaker. The important thing is identifying the right companies and directing resources to solve the Seven Deadly Things.

For more information, listen to the Milken Institute presentation addressing current global challenges was given at an investors conference in London on Jan 18, 2007. Even nine months later, it is still worth incorporating into the overall lifeboat calculus. Better yet, for those of us in based in or around California, the 2007 California State of the State conference in Beverly Hills will be held on October 29. Still plenty of time to register and attend for the discount rate of $450, prior to October 5. (Government, academic and nonprofit institutions get in for $395)

Listen at Bloomberg: Finance as Solution to Global Problems to catch up on the “news” that today’s children can expect AVERAGE life expectancy of 110. You’ll also learn precisely why 80 is the new 60; 60 the new 40, etc.

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Creating the 21st Century Library

The Prelinger Library eschews the Dewey Decimal and Library of Congress systems, and is organized instead by what Megan Shaw Prelinger calls “a map of my brain.”<blockquote>[T]he idea of making a library was fed by my experience that college and university libraries’ closed stacks inhibit browsing and the process of random discovery. I always felt like I had my best ideas or developed my best projects when I was wandering and looking for certain things, but then finding things I didn’t expect.</blockquote>I think there will always be value in being able to find a precise item by a predictable and precise method; but for unstructured learning and discovery, this is one of the few truly exciting ideas to come along in quite a while. It’s still very difficult to duplicate the aesthetic spelunking experience of walking around amongst rows and stacks of human knowledge. At least for me, there is a visceral satisfaction in discovering ideas by that method that is absent from web based discovering. That doesn’t make either one good or bad, they’re just different.

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Now Open - Body World2 and The Three Pound Gem @ TheTech

The long anticipated Body World2 and The Three Pound Gem opened today at the TheTech Musuem of Innovation in San Jose. Can’t wait to check it out! From the site:<blockquote>Body Worlds 2 & The Three Pound Gem presents the complexity and beauty of the human body, preserved through Plastination, the groundbreaking method of specimen preservation invented by anatomist, Dr. Gunther von Hagens. More than 200 authentic human specimens offer visitors profound insights into the form and funciton of the human body, wellness and disease, and the [increasingly less] mysterious world of the brain.</blockquote>Sorry, couldn’t resist that one small interlinear editorial comment. :-) Personally, I’d like to see the Machine and Man: Ethics and Robotics in the 21st Century section of TheTech significantly expanded, as well.

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Got Ubik?

We, my associates and myself, are in a line of business that surpasses all rational understanding. I'm not at liberty to make disclosures at this time, but we consider matters at present to be ominous but not however hopeless. Despair is not indicated -- not by any means (Dick 1969, Ubik, 5).

If I haven’t mentioned it before, Philip K. Dick’s Ubik truly is part of the core curriculum for any responsible posthuman aspirant due to the interactions and interdependencies between the characters in Ubik’s world and analogical relationships in a world of uploaded, substrate independent posthumans. If you haven’t read it, get ready to be disappointed at just how unoriginal some of your ideas have been … and maybe even some of William Gibson’s … all along. On the other hand, if ego can take the hit, it could well be affirming and inspiring, along with PKD’s entire body of work.

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Could OBE's be a subtle Evolutionary Invitation to Substrate Independence?

Of course, the subject question is my posthuman-biased recontextualization of these new findings, while The Economist reports more plainly that, “Out-of-body experiences (OBE’s) can now be created at will. Studying them sheds light on the nature of consciousness.” Not that the question is new, in the least. As this timely article reminds us, Anatomist Charles Sedgwick Minot opened the 1902 American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) meeting over a century ago with:<blockquote>I HOPE to convince you that the time has come to take up consciousness as a strictly biological problem.”</blockquote>For an aspiring futurist, that was an extrapolation worthy of complete envy and awe. The Economist goes on to report:<blockquote>In two papers published in this week’s edition of Science (subscription req’d), the AAAS’s house journal, Ehrsson and Blanke report their latest results.</blockquote>

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Numenta's Heirarchical Temporal Memory Platform

Subscribers received this newsletter today.

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One Step Closer to Mainstream

Once you hit the Cringley radar, you’re one step closer to the mainstream radar; and for good reason. It’s this dependable pragmatism which continually re-qualifies Mr. C. to hold the bully pulpit.<blockquote>Rather than a technological Hell or Utopia, the Singularity is likely to leave us still in our sitcom just with different props.</blockquote><blockquote>To me the Singularity feels a lot like Y2K …</blockquote><blockquote>… like every other rite of passage, this one will be both more and less than we expect it to be. Our troubles won’t go away, they’ll just become different troubles.</blockquote><blockquote>The real peril in all this is that our social, cultural, and political technologies probably won’t keep pace, meaning we’ll have whole new ways to hurt ourselves and others along with the same old [inequitable and generally ineffective] ways to keep ourselves from doing so.</blockquote>Bracketed editorial context mine.

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How to GTH OTFR

That would be Get the Heck Off This Freaking Rock; a fundamentally complementary enterprise to accomplishing posthuman cluefulness. In fact, these companies could well be building Noah’s REAL Ark when the fundies blow themselves to smithereens in the most perverse self-fulfilling prophecy imaginable.<blockquote><ul><li>Fly Me to the Moon: Space Hotel Sees 2012 Opening</li><li>Bigelow Areospace: Genesis I and II</li><li>Mandatory Slashdot Debunking</li></ul></blockquote>

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How to Sell Youngevity, Longevity, and hopefully a little Levity

With great thanks to our ever-vigilant uber-libertarian loyalist Ronald Bailey, I’ve been catching up on Transvision 2007 from this run down rented shanty here in central Palo Alto. It’s definitely a bonus to live within a 120 second walk to the main library, and yeah, we’ve labored like Candide to resurrect the front lawn after a decade of neglect and dormancy, so things are improving; but it’s always the gardening progress made in the back yard that reveals the true work ethic, don’t you think?

As transhumanists, it certainly makes sense for us to spruce up the front yard before getting to the difficult work, out back. All this Youngevity/Longevity Dividend work strikes me as somewhat analogous merely because that’s one of the interesting things a human neocortex does: creates analogies to our own experience in order to make sense of other experiences, in order to construct new predictions about what reality might (should) be like. But enough of a nod to Jeff Hawkins, it was actually in the interest of poking some plain old goofy, frivolous, and I hope harmless fun at the equally revered and maligned Mr. Bailey (would he really have it any other way?), that I digressed. In all seriousness, I am ever grateful for his tireless efforts to get at the REASON behind things. Thank you, Ronald.

To the point, it was the immortal (well, in memory) Freddy Mercury who artfully delivered the quintessential American marketing message: I want it ALL and I want it NOW. That’s what sells in America, so why not sell it? Why not peddle the proverbial low hanging fruit of the positive posthuman future?

It seems to me that the Fight Aging! site is getting it largely right by marketing what already works best of all: INSTANT GRATIFICATION. After all, spammers keep spamming because the same old idiotic come-ons keep working enough of the time to make it worth their libertarian hey-if-it-works people-should-be-allowed-to-do-it while. Be Rich NOW. Be Thinner NOW. Be Smarter NOW. Be a Stud NOW. Try Absinthe NOW.

So when Fight Aging! says The Message is:<blockquote>Stop damaging your health (NOW)! A good diet and better lifestyle will improve and lengthen your natural life span. You’ll feel better (NOW), you’ll feel better for longer, and you’ll be in good shape (NOW, and) to take advantage of future advances in healthy life extension medicine.
</blockquote>Of course, I’ve inserted the implied NOWs to illustrate that these are Longevity Dividends that can be realized right now. It seems to me that no expensive studies from experts are needed to validate this intuitively obvious deduction. If less people are obese TODAY … if less people are addicted TODAY … if less people are sedentary TODAY … then less money will be spent on their healthcare TODAY … and into the future. Those near-term gains should be readily measurable (if they aren’t already published) and utterly compelling to the public. Have I simply missed this argument somewhere else? Surely I’m not the first to suggest this approach.

If one of the central motivations for positive proximate behavior changes can be attributed to the quest for longevity, then as a society we can begin realizing  quantifiable gains from the so-called Longevity Dividend … TODAY. At the very least, this might be one way to gain a little traction in some market venues. Operative word: some … expanding transvision buy-in is a hydra-headed marketing mission.

To schlep out one more of those pesky damned analogies: if we could find a way to sell some kind of INSTANT GRATIFICATION LONGEVITY PACK in a way that is more compelling than the 2:00 A.M. come-ons from Big Pharma, that might be another small step toward reaching a mass market. No offense, but I found myself questioning whether Shat actually helps more than hurts any given marketing campaign, these days. While I find his admirable cynicism about the absurd phenomenon of celebrity personally more endearing than tribbles, if we’re trying to reach the 18 to 34 and 35 to 54 demographics, is he really the best spokesperson these days?

At the moment, I’m speculating that it might be more about recruiting Marshall Mathers … “yo, it’s worth overcoming all kinds of SHIT in life, yo; you don’t gotta’s stay stuck in The Man’s death trap machine if you love your family, stick around to be wif ‘em” … and James Keenan “stepping through my shadow … 46 and 2, just ahead of me” … and most importantly country music icons willing to lament, “and if only ah could hang around diggin’ up these here catfish from underneath them there mud rocks down the crick at the bottom of the hill  for another seven years or so, you’d come back to me and we could watch are young’uns come up in the world and oh what joy a longer life livin’ would done bring us.”

It seems to me that:<ol><li>Younger people need to come to believe that older people don’t suck.</li><li>Dumber people need to come to believe that smarter people don’t suck.</li></ol>Those seem like a couple of the most trenchant mass marketing challenges, to this particular self-deprecating metamoronic mind; considering that the reciprocals generally don’t present as much challenge due to so many older humans worshipping youth and any authentically smart person does not devalue any human. So please relax if you love country music, I’m not saying all country music lovers are morons (some of my best friends like country music … and some of my other friends are almost as moronic as me … <snarky smile>).

I’m only recklessly stereotypifying to make the points that less educated people are very often skeptical of more educated people and young people all too often have not developed sufficient empathy to consider the perspective of older people. We’re trying to bridge BOTH jagged and perilous demographic divides. That’s not exactly going to happen over a mere decade; we’re talking two or three, unless we find new ways to accelerate change in the context of deeply held mass market opinions by maybe adding valium or flouride or prozac to the water supply … or by deftly leveraging the twitterverse, the entertainment culture, and emerging avenues of influence.

Finally, I suspect that most H+ wannabes like myself will agree that it will not suddenly become easy to overcome the cacaphony (it’s not a Hurlbut symphony, though both contain ‘phony’) of an entrentched, irrational, death-defending culture that is already over saturated with a trillion competing marketing messages. After all, we’re only trying to overcome the inertia of ALL OF HUMAN HISTORY with respect to this particular issue, comrades.

Last damnable analogy: when working to reverse the ravages of earthly death on a small plot of neglected soil, the neighbors initially looked on with skeptical wags. Will the thankless grimy labor really continue this time? How serious are the would-be life bringers, really? Ha! The last ones tried that for YEARS and failed. Who do they think they are? What’s in it for them, anyway? They don’t even OWN that land. Why would they care? I don’t trust them, they look kinda’ suspicious to me. Have you seen the crappy vehicles they drive? I’ve never heard of her, have you? It must be nobody then. No need to pay attention to nobodies. But as the results began to show, the wagging heads gradually attenuated, giving way to faintly glimpsing grins and grudgingly approving glances; and eventually, the first friendly greeting broke forth.

Patience, Candide. The back yard is in need of tilling and we’ll chat some more when next we meet in the garden.

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Woohoo! Reports from Transvision 2007!

Eternal gratitude to Fight Aging!

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On the Wisdom of Repugnance

As always, faithfully transcribing and contextualizing the July 20, 2007 Future Salon, the ever salient and perspicacious Anne Corwin conveys:<blockquote>The “wisdom of repugnance” argument was also invoked … in the context of suggesting that visceral reactions sometimes do lead to preferential moral positions. After all, quite a few things that did not used to be considered “repugnant” now certainly are; examples given were slavery, mass murder of indigenous peoples, non-universal suffrage, and homophobia. All these things are now fairly widely condemned, when they used to be accepted as a matter of course. Applying the “wisdom of repugnance” to the subject of longevity, de Grey asks whether age-related death might perhaps become repugnant at some point.</blockquote>While in his role as spokesperson he must take the more conservative tact of “asking” whether this might some day be the case. We lowly foot soldiers in the cause for Rational Longevity are a bit freer to assert that this absolutely MUST become the case, before any appreciable progress will be made. After all, death by aging already is repugnant to anyone who has given the matter even a few moments of lucent, cogent consideration. Key words: lucid, cogent.

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Age Discrimination is a Cancer in Health Care Industry

In addition to SiCKO, another Necessary Link to be aware of:<blockquote>The way I see it, longevity medicine is a means to acknowledge that when you get older, your care needs are different – and I also firmly believe that medicine is as obligated to find ways to help older people survive as it is to find ways to help younger people survive. Anything less than that is age discrimination. It has always confused the heck out of me that if you go into a doctor’s office at age 20 and are told that you’re dying, it’s treated as a tragedy, but if you’re 75, it’s treated like something that you just need to accept. A lot of the medical discrimination experienced by elderly people seems exactly like some of the discrimination experienced by people with disabilities – in both cases you’ll hear things like, “It’s not natural for these people to be alive”.

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Survive, Thrive, and Succeed in spite of Utter Ignorant CRAP

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y6bbMQXQ180]

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Imagining the Tenth Dimension

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qU1fixMAObI]

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The House Beyond Your Sky

SCI FI Wire reports that veteran author Benjamin Rosenbaum has beat this would-be rookie to the punch. Congratulations, Ben. For my own sake (and others, I suspect), we can only hope that you’ve further opened a GENRE rather than zero-summed us out of contention for the posthuman prognostication market. Note to self: next time don’t just listen to PJ, do what she says. :)

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Biological Nanobatteries

Engadget:<blockquote>NASA researchers working on biological nanobattery. The idea is to make use of the iron-containing protein ferritin, which apparently has the innate ability to carry either a positive or negative charge. In practice, one layer of ferritin would simply be stacked with another layer carrying the opposite charge, effectively forming a battery just a few nanometers thick</blockquote>

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South Dakota + Grinning Scientists + Abandoned Mine + Secret Underground Fort

Better sick the Area 51 watchers on this one, pronto! But seriously:<blockquote>Neutrinos move at nearly the speed of light, scientists say, and cosmic radiation, a sort of clutter, makes it difficult to study them at the earth’s surface. Deep underground, there’s less clutter or static.</blockquote>

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Modern cavemen may find the cure

Okay, so this is six weeks stale, but it’s still cool, even if sooo long out dated by now.

A high-res ‘4D’ vision of the human body

“No, really dude, it’s SCIENCE, not just bitchin’ psychedelic yoga practice, I promise, man!” “Dude!”



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Is there a Fine Line Between Obssessive Infatuation and Adaptive Acceleration?

NPR: Ultimately, at the heart of the novel ... is the idea that the nature of our minds are somehow changed by the gadgets which we are increasingly using to communicate.

Richtel: You start with the premise that, as human beings, we evolve to fit our environment ... as the jungle becomes the digital environment, we will adapt with it ...

NPR : Love, Loss and Digital-Age Deception in ‘Hooked’.

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TransVision2007 - Global Summit for Humanity

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T_t1119H7dI]

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Encore Post - Singularity Institute for Artificial Intelligence

Okay, I’ll post this as a “second wind” effort to keep this video moving with a few crucial personal caveats:

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The Identity Theory of Mind

Just on the heels of listening to the Audible.com rendition of Jeffrey Hawkins’s “On Intelligence,” it seems only befitting to discover the January 2000 treatise, The Identity Theory of Mind (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy) has been upgraded within the past ten days:<blockquote>The identity theory of mind holds that states and processes of the mind are identical to states and processes of the brain … to the effect that these experiences just are brain processes, not merely correlated with brain processes (J. J. C. Smart).</blockquote>Much of Hawkins’s thesis revolves around similar ideas, and he goes to great lengths to describe a plausible framework for exactly HOW the mind emerges from two very simple fundamental operations: storage and prediction. Hawkins theorizes that through auto-associative, invariant, hierarchical interactions of stored sequences of patterns (brain states), we become conscious, self-aware. To this layman, it is a highly fascinating and pragmatic contribution.

Yes, there is much more to it, and Hawkins concedes that many strictly utilitarian neuroanatomists could well take him to task on any number of specifics; however, suffice to say that Hawkins seems to have perfectly prepped the reader (or listener in this case) to consider JJC Smart’s work – the subject of this entry – over the coming week.

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Dean Kamen Team's Latest Robotic Arm Demo

As is so often the case, thanks to Sentient Developments for alerting me to this one. Yes, we’re talking TACTILE fingertips, boys and girls. As I’ve ranted for years, we don’t have to know what the cortex DOES to take advantage of its capabilities; all we need – intially – is clean, accurate, increasingly granular access to the I/O ports and we’re in business. Yeah, yeah, yeah, to actually GET AT intelligence, we’re going to have to understand invariant hierarchical sequential electro-chemical neuronal storage and auto-associative retrieval; but in the meantime, there is no reason to not move forward with some of the lower level somato-sensory replacement parts and augmentations. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1hzRja9eunY]

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Radical Life Extension is Pointless

Because everyone knows that All Old People Suck and have no creativity left in them. Just hurry up and make them die so we don’t have to suffer the endless yammerings, and utterly pointless lives, right?

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Cute Overload

Aw, how cute. The slashdotties are entertaining enhancement for about five minutes. Now we can finally rest assured that the greatest intellectual leaders and ethical giants of our day have brought their collective, distributed, open-source, undivided attention to bear upon society’s greatest challenge of the coming century. Without the rigorous analysis of slashdot, surely all would be lost.

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Twitter and Waste the Hours in an Off Hand Way ...

Scrolling away the hours that make up a dull day; twitter and waste the hours in an offhand way. Clicking around with an optical mouse in your own house; waiting for some link or some ping to show you the way.
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Splashcast looks interesting

Yet another individually configurable democratic slick and sexy lookin’ streamcast scene player/viewer.

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On Intelligence

I’m presently listening to the Audible.com audio book version of Jeff Hawkins and Sandra Blakeslee’s “On Intelligence.” You can listen to a sample here. Audible.com just may win my subscription, if only I had the time to listen to more audio books. Unfortunately, even given the convenience and affordability of my $49 Sandisk Sansa m240 player (VERY cheap and effective alternative to the much overhype-pods), time is the limiting factor. [Note that the $69 m250 has twice the space (2GB) for only another $20; but was not yet released at the time of my purchase. Ug.]

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An Evil Chimera Science Update

As is so often the case, thanks again to Dr. J for bringing attention to this article and prompting me to find out more about Pharyngula’s utterly brilliant content. Written by Professor Paul Z. Meyers, the blog is subtitled “Evolution, development, and random biological ejaculations from a godless liberal.” Here’s an excerpt:<blockquote>Just as a little fantasy, I don’t think the proponents of this compromise quite realize what new ethical dilemmas they are opening up, and expect to see the door slammed shut once some of the possibilities sink in. One thing to think about: if you pull a few totipotent cells out of one embryo, a few more out of another and another, one thing you can do is reconstitute a chimeric new individual out of the bits and pieces—a kind of Frankenembryo. This isn’t at all far-fetched: tetraparental mice have been made, and tetragametic humans spontaneously occur.</blockquote>

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Elderly iPod users skip a beat

The excuse:<blockquote>this kind of test had never been carried out before because it was never really an issue, being that most pacemaker wearers tend not to have an iPod.</blockquote>“Never really an issue” because we ASSUME that All Those Old Morons will NEVER understand our hip, young, cool bullshit. I am getting increasingly outraged as the methodical disenfranchisement of older people in our society. “Yeah, don’t even test it for safety, they’re all too old and tired and lazy and stupid.” With that prejudice driving so much of product development, and with product development driving so much of popular culture, is it any wonder that age discrimination is not only alive and well in America, but getting WORSE and affecting younger old people (down into the 40’s and even 30’s), every day?

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The University is Irrelevant and relatively soon thereafter, Society as well

Tutorom, taken to one histrionic logical extreme, might entirely obviate the idea of university as an institution for learning. The university archetype will likely continue to be effective as a utilitarian metaphor for productive civil interaction and exchange between diverse consciousnesses; each progressing along or across a spectrum of developmental and innate trajectories and capabilities. However, to the extent that self-directed and motivated information acquisition and synthesis plays a role in the individual development of sentient entities within that context, the Tutorom model presents an interesting method for encouraging and monetizing the free-flow of certain specific categories of information and knowledge.

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Prostrate Before the Robot Invasion

It’s Scientific American, not SciFi. The robots ARE inside of you. While resistance to our cyborg future is not futile, it does result in premature ejection from the competition for achieving posthuman sentience. So you are free to ignore the robots, close your eyes and blow your load of consciousness in one quick 70-year pop, or you can choose to exercise some delayed gratification and maybe develop some significant staying power. Don’t worry, neither choice will result in hairy palms (unless that suits your Avatar fantasy) and we’ll continue to fight for your right to retain those choices, no matter what. Oh, the lowbrow post-sensual existential entendre! Perhaps we may find that we’re really making progress once the phrase “keeping it up” refers to the ability to keep one’s sentience pre-resurrected – contiguous and coherent – just a little longer than the next nascent substrate-independent entity.

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Blogs are People, Too

Thank the Penultimate Proximate Cause that somebody is thinking and acting seriously along these lines:

  • one-size-fits-all search has become debased
    (a rant i posted some months ago to my company's intranet bloggy site wiki thingie)
  • search has led us astray
    (largely due to #1, above)
  • blogs are people, too
    (oh, NOW you'll get my affirmative rant and riff engine roaring!)

Namely, it’s ActiveWeave describing some of its latest permutations of another long-standing and now increasingly attainable ambition to contextualize increasingly chaordic complexity by marking up the web.

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Aubrey de Grey at TED 2006

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E8km1yC0n2A]

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21 Solutions to Save the World

We live in an age of anxiety. People everywhere fear the next terrorist attack. Meanwhile, we slowly grow numb to Iraq’s endless string of kidnappings and suicide bombings. Between bird flu, tsunamis, and loose nukes, our list of fears is getting longer. So, we asked 21 leading thinkers: What is one solution that would make the world a better place? Here are their answers.
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A Jazzy Riff on Frank Fuque Ama's Death Deficit

It’s a joke, francis … fuque … ama … get it? Never mind. Here’s one you should get, though. Another Ron Bailey classic quotable: “Or you can have the following deal. You get your longevity treatment, if you agree not to take Social Security; or, you can get your social security … and die. There’s your choice. I think I know which way people will go.”

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Great Ape Project Update

news@nature.com Chimp denied a legal guardian - Court turns down request in case aiming for ‘ape rights’.

In a trustee court hearing on 24 April, the judge denied the request. She said that if she appointed a legal guardian for a chimp, then this might create the public perception that humans with court-appointed legal guardians are at the same level as animals.

This is an antithetical non sequitur. The point is that our fellow primate “animals” should be at a similar level to extraordinarily limited functioning humans. I’m sorry if this offends the human racists, but offense or lack thereof does nothing to alter reality.
<blockquote></blockquote>

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Shallow Spelunking into Social Intelligence

It occurred to me, in the course of reading Daniel Goleman’s latest, Social Intelligence, that I’ve spent  a good deal of my “idle process” time trying to understand the world, other humans, attempting to validate my perceptions of both, and to understand their perceptions of me. One observation that I’ve long come to terms with is that I’m clearly not within the center 1/3 of the bell curve with respect to human cognitive experience. This has resulted in a lifelong sense of relative alienation, and consequent efforts to somehow accomplish or contribute something of sufficient utility and value to the rest of the humans, that I would somehow, eventually, “fit in.” Of course, the efforts to “fit in” only began after a couple decades of “fuck you if I don’t fit in” in my earlier years of muddling through the experience.

Today, two things occurred to me. First, my basic understanding of human neuro anatomy is woefully lacking. While Goleman provides a very accessible introduction to this curriculum, his writing has prompted me to find out more. To this end, I’ve discovered the wonderful Whole Brain Atlas by Keith A. Johnson and J. Alex Becker of Harvard Medical School. The atlas provides amazing MRI/PET “fly-throughs” of the brain, a neuro imaging primer, and dozens of other amazing views into neuro anatomy. It’s a great place to spend some idle process time and is a great complement to the timeless Gray’s Anatomy, which is where I actually need to spend the majority of my time in order to learn what interests me at the moment. The $185.00 for the 1600 page online edition is an absolute bargain.  BTW, I have no affiliation with Elsevier or Churchill Livingstone, so if you feel even the slightest animosity toward people or sites that link to affiliate programs, feel free to dismiss such distractions and move on. :)

The second thing I realized is that if I feel that I do not fit into the center 1/3 of the bell curve of human cognitive experience, then 2/3 of humans under that curve potentially feel the same way that I do, to some degree, or another! We, “the outliers” are far from alone and need not apologize or seek the acceptance of the “centrists” to any degree beyond that which any human subgroup might seek mutual recognition. Despite this beta impression, I am still curious about the similarities between the experience of cultural and racial minorities and the experience of cognitive minorities. Oftentimes, it appears to me that the two find themselves in the same room at the same time far more than pure chance would predict. It’s a completely anecdotal observation, but one that, for me, carries a fairly heavy weight of commonsense accuracy. More research is required.

The third of two things that occurred to me during the course of this relatively shallow spelunking into the caverns of social intelligence, and my historical lack thereof; shall remain unwritten in this space, for possible inclusion in a wider ranging work, which I hope to complete sometime before decade’s end. The determining factor in reaching that goal is closely tied to whether or not I can extract myself from the wage-slave ranks; if not permanently, at least for a sufficient amount of time to complete the work. See Chris Carlsson’s work, for more on that tangential predicament. <blockquote></blockquote>

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Data Confirms that Einstein at least half right about Time Space

Finally! After attending Dr. Everitt’s report last year (when data collection was complete) the first phase of Gravity Probe B results are finally in, confirming the geodetic effect! It’ll be another 8 or 9 months before the team can report on frame-dragging. This is truly some of the most exciting scientific work I’ve been privileged to witness in my brief time on the planet and like thousands of others, I’m practically holding my breath to hear the next stage of results.<blockquote>Today, Everitt and his team are poised to share what they have found so far-namely that the data from the GP-B gyroscopes clearly confirm Einstein’s predicted geodetic effect to a precision of better than 1 percent. However, the frame-dragging effect is 170 times smaller than the geodetic effect, and Stanford scientists are still extracting its signature from the spacecraft data. The GP-B instrument has ample resolution to measure the frame-dragging effect precisely, but the team has discovered small torque and sensor effects that must be accurately modeled and removed from the result.</blockquote>If you want to stay ahead of the pack for future developments, subscribe to the announcements list, or better yet:<blockquote>Norbert Bartel, Professor of Astrophysics and Space Sciences at York University in Toronto, Canada, has produced and directed a 26-minute documentary movie about the Gravity Probe B experiment entitled, Testing Einstein’s Universe. This movie, along with 80 minutes of additional video about relativity, physics, and astronomy is available on a DVD, which you can purchase from the Website.</blockquote>

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Death of the Darknet and the End of Encryption

Either the cost of security against identity theft and other information security risks is increasingly high, or Comcast has joined the broadband providers who are killing encryption by degrading anonymized traffic:

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An End to Aging - Good or Bad?

Wow, moderated by my good friend (in the most hyperbolic sense of the word) Aubrey, himself.

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How Neuronanotechnology Will Lead to Melding of Mind and Machine

Ray Kurzweil at Second Annual Geoethical Nanotechnology Workshop. With introduction by Martine Rothblatt.

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Trusting Relationships in Business

From the Intentional Software blog:<blockquote>In their 2005 book John Seely Brown and John Hagel III advise that The Only Sustainable Edge for a business is to accelerate and leverage distinctive capabilities and knowledge. They advise each business to work closely with others in networks of companies that have diverse, complementary capabilities, and to build long-term, reciprocal, trust-based relationships through shared meaning. </blockquote>Why is this subject deemed metavalent in nature? Because the very structure of business, moving toward a substrate-independent world, must itself evolve or die. Market capitalism, industrial organization, corporate structures, like all human constructs, are anything but immutable. The most stable processes and procedures are often the most petrified – long-dead means and methods that indeed flourished for a period of time, but their continued presence in petrified form is not exactly evidence of continued viability.

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Total [Bogus] Recall

The 2007 Symbolic Systems Distinguished Speaker is Prof. Elizabeth Loftus. Her talk will be entitled, “What’s the Matter with Memory?” on May 15th, at 5pm in room 420-040. Attendance is open for anyone in the Stanford community. That is, if you can REMEMBER to join us. :)<blockquote>For at least a century, scientists have demonstrated the tricks memory can play. More recently they have shown that people can be led to develop entire memories for events that never happened - “Rich false memories.” In recent work, people have been led to remember nonexistent events from the recent past as well as non-existent events from their childhood. People [of any age] can be led to falsely believe that they have had familiar experiences, but also rather bizarre or implausible ones. They can be led to believe that they did things that would have been impossible (e.g., shaking hands with Bugs Bunny during a trip to Disneyland). They can be led to falsely believe that they had experiences that would have been rather traumatic had they actually happened. False memories, like true ones, also have consequences for people, affecting later thoughts, intentions, and behaviors. For example, people who are led to believe that as children they got sick eating particular foods show avoidance of those foods later on. If false memories can be so readily planted in the mind, what does it say about the nature of memory?</blockquote>

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The End of [the Computer Mouse && other Stupid Things]

Time flies. It’s hard to believe that it’s been two years since we first heard of Alex Frank’s DONTCLICK.IT project. Personally, I had hopes that the computer mouse would be gone, by now, but humans are stubborn animals, not readily prone to rapid change and not readily accepting of people, places, or ideas that are foreign to them.

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Is there such a thing as a photographic memory? And if so, can it be learned?

A former child eidetiker asks:<blockquote>Well, is there? Can it?</blockquote>

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Juicing the Brain

From the old news you might have missed bin:

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How to make diamond, one carbon atom at a time

ADT Eyes Electronics and Sensors for Its Nanoscale Thin-Film Diamond:<blockquote>Advanced Diamond Technologies makes diamond one carbon atom at a time. ADT’s UNCD® (for ultra-nanocrystalline diamond) is born of U.S. Department of Energy research and uses a nanometer-scale process to make a continuous film comprised of the smallest grains of diamond known. UNCD, consisting of diamond grains that are 3-5 nm in diameter, has uses in wireless communication, bio-sensors and nano-manufacturing. “We turn 50 cents of natural gas into $500 of diamond by rearranging the carbon atoms,” said ADT’s president Neil Kane.</blockquote>

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We are Stardust - Neil deGrasse Tyson

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJOpDLjpSYI]

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The Effort Effect

Why do some people achieve their potential while equally talented others don’t? Can old dogs ever learn new tricks? It’s all about EFFORT.

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Home is Where your Avatar Is

Trust me. If you are not keeping up, you are falling behind … fast. Adapt, evolve, and transcend, or get planted with the rest of your fertilizer ancestors. [youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kyquAXKeEI0]

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The Road Ahead

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7aOHpvdY9Q]

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Capture and Store Human Thought at Moment of its Creation

Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Janelia Farm has rounded up 300 of the world’s top neuroscientists to make it happen.

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Seminars About Long Term Thinking [SALT]

Examples:<blockquote>Technology acceleration is like what happens approaching the singularity in the center of a black hole - everything is transformed utterly and unpredictably. That metaphor was invented by science fiction writer Vernor Vinge in 1980’s and has entered standard usage as a way of thinking about the near future. In this talk Vinge challenges his own idea, investigating scenarios of “a human-scaled world with long time horizons,” and how that might play out over ten or twenty thousand years.</blockquote><blockquote>In a dazzling duet Will Wright and Brian Eno gave an intense clinic on the joys and techniques of “generative” creation.

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If You Are Over 70, These Folks Want You Dead

Anne C @ Existence is Wonderful:<blockquote>So, that’s it, senior citizens. Never mind that novel you were writing, that dollhouse you were building for the grandkids, or that new computer you were in the process of putting together. Your existence is threatening the “wonders of the next generation”, so it’s high time the world stopped wasting resources trying to keep you alive and healthy.


</blockquote><blockquote> </blockquote>

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Foreword to The Intelligent Universe

The explosive nature of exponential growth means it may only take a quarter of a millennium to go from sending messages on horseback to saturating the matter and energy in our solar system with sublimely intelligent processes. The ongoing expansion of our future superintelligence will then require moving out into the rest of the universe, where we may engineer new universes. A new book by James Gardner tells that story.

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Ashley X story hits prime time

More catchup with Dvorsky, last week (1/5/07):
<blockquote>I stand behind my article and wish to re-iterate my stance that Ashley’s parents have taken the most humane course of action possible.
</blockquote>Details on his blog.

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Freedom of speech is [still] a peacetime luxury

Excerpt from George Dvorsky about this time, last year (Feb, 2006):

[T]hat the Homeland Security Department considers bloggers a potential threat really shouldn't come as a complete surprise; the military would likely shut down threatening and subversive blogs during times of war or civil unrest.

It's during such episodes that control of information flow becomes tactically paramount -- so much so that nations often regress to de facto authoritarianism and even totalitarianism. As a result, the state has the power to claim a monopoly on the memesphere, including extreme censorship and propaganda campaigns.

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Living Old - Frontline & FAQ Editions

“Even though I’m 94, I still have ambitions,” Estelle Strongin, a 94-year old financial advisor still works every day.

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Animusic - Prototype Posthuman Musicians?

0Wow. If a musical mind were uploaded, it’s not too difficult to imagine that this might be one fairly satisfying way to express that essence. I can’t help but imagine the ability to EMBODY these forms in an uploaded or abstract posthuman frame. Fascinating.

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Biovideology? By JoVE!

0JoVE is an online research journal for publishing visualized (video-based) biological experiments, inviting submissions in all areas of biological sciences.

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Competitive, Weird, Elegant, Expensive, Deeply Human Science

On his website, Thomas Hager writes, “Modern medicine was born in 1932, when a selfless doctor in Nazi Germany used patience, brains, a completely mistaken idea, and some extraordinary luck to discover the world’s first miracle drug.” During a talk that aired on BookTV today (watch), Hager reminded us about a type of medical singularity that happened just 75 years ago.

Hager explained that, as baby boomers, many of us are the first generation in human history to have benefited from ready access to medicines that actually cure things. For all of previous human history, this was not the case. Think about that for a moment; to me, it’s barely imaginable. Yet, Hager reminds that prior to the discovery of sulfonamides (sulfa), physicians were purely palliative practitioners, utterly powerless to cure anything whatsoever, for the previous entirety of human history.

Just 75 years ago, all that changed, virtually overnight.

By way of contrasting two historical events; namely, the tragic loss in 1924 of a young Calvin Coolidge Jr. to a blood infection contracted via a trivially common blister on his toe, followed by the seemingly miraculous pharmaceutical healing of FDR’s son just 12 years later, Hager reminds readers that many of us have already lived through a kind of pharmaceutical singularity that even the brightest minds of earlier centuries could not have imagined.

This raises some potentially interesting questions. Are there relevant lessons to be learned from this particular historical inflection point? Are there strategies to be gleaned that might help us to noodle out new ways of glimpsing beyond the seemingly impervious event horizon of a technological singularity? Or, at the very least, to help us engage in more credible scenario development beyond the point which common sense might otherwise persuade us of the futility of such exercises?

Similar to Kurzweil’s observations of technological acceleration, are there similar mini-singularities throughout history, scientific inflection points like the discovery of sulfa drugs, from which we might discern patterns that would further inform and improve our planning and foresight capabilities?

These might be interesting questions for History of Technology practitioners and armchair futurists. However, in light of recent developments, such as emergent bacterium strains that are utterly resistant to all the antibiotics in common use, today – namely, Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Vancomycin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (VRSA) – they might be absolutely crucial questions for public policy and health planning professionals.

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Free Palo Alto Colloquia - MetaElectronics - Self Configuring Neuromorphic Systems

Repost from batrans mailing list.

http://www.workit.com/events/event_pop.cfm?event_id=34819

Event Date: Thursday November 30, 2006
Event Time:4:00PM
Hosted By: Lockheed Palo Alto Colloquia
Lockheed Martin, 3251 Hanover St. - ATC Auditorium in Building 202 Palo
Alto, CA, 94304
Directions: http://www.lockheedmartin.com/data/assets/7344.pdf
Cost: free

METAELECTRONICS SELF-CONFIGURING NEUROMORPHIC SYSTEMS

Dr. Kwabena Boahen, Stanford University

Nanoelectronic technology promises to cram a trillion transistors onto a 1cm^2 chip. How do we harness all these devices? Abstraction, which has been used until now, is becoming increasingly inadequate as microelectronic chips approach a billion transistors. We can learn from biology, which handles complexity through developmental processes that elaborate a relatively simple starting recipe into a complex mature structure. By borrowing from biology, we have developed two self-configuring microelectronic chips. These chips capture the ability of epigenetic development to generate representations of features in neural layers and to autoroute connections between these layers. This metamorphic approach provides a powerful alternative to handling complexity in nanoelectronic systems.

Dr. Boahen studied Electrical and Computer Engineering at Johns Hopkins University before earning his doctorate in Computation and Neural Systems from the California Institute of Technology in 1997. He then joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was associate professor of Bioengineering until December 2005, when he moved to Stanford. Boahen is a bioengineer who is using silicon integrated circuits to emulate the way neurons compute, linking the seemingly disparate fields of electronics and computer science with neurobiology and medicine. His group’s neuromorphic chips – including a silicon retina that could be used to give the blind sight – were featured on the cover of the May 2005 issue of Scientific American.

Other Information:
http://www.lockheedmartin.com/wms/findPage.do?dsp=fec&ci=15591&sc=400

The Palo Alto Colloquia are a long-standing tradition of public outreach that deliver information about aerospace research and development news to the local community. All presentations are given on Thursdays at 4:15 p.m. in the Lockheed Martin Advanced Technology Center Auditorium and last about an hour. Refreshments are available at 4:00 p.m. Visitors are welcome. Stop by to find out the latest details about some fascinating science!

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Robot, heal thyself

Sorry, but I just don’t think this kind of hyperbole helps the cause.<blockquote>It’s an achievement that inspires notions of robots with consciousness and independent minds.</blockquote>Or this, where a potentially time-consuming computational process is anthropomorphized as dreaming. Absurd.<blockquote>Adami described how a robot like this one might perform in unknown territory, exploring the landscape and then “dreaming” of new methods to overcome obstacles it had encountered.</blockquote>

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Robot, heal thyself

Sorry, but I just don’t think this kind of hyperbole helps the cause.<blockquote>It’s an achievement that inspires notions of robots with consciousness and independent minds.</blockquote>Or this, where a potentially time-consuming computational process is anthropomorphized as dreaming. Absurd.<blockquote>Adami described how a robot like this one might perform in unknown territory, exploring the landscape and then “dreaming” of new methods to overcome obstacles it had encountered.</blockquote>

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Aronofsky - The Fountain (2006)

0Tom Verde: “Death is a disease, and there’s a cure. And I will find it!”

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111 year old WWI Vet Honored

“Florida’s only living World War I veteran got a long-delayed medal Friday as he smiled at the hubbub and recalled his service on a battleship nearly 90 years ago.”

Just 30 or 40 years ago, a person living into the late 80’s or early 90’s made the news. Today, people living past 110 are already beginning to feel commonplace. You do the math for “reasonable” expectations in 2040.

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quotations

Life is a collection of kludges taped together by chance and filtered by selection for functionality; it all works magnificently well, but if one looks under the hood, one is simultaneously appalled by inelegance and impressed with the accumulation of needless complexity… The complexity of developmental regulation isn’t a product of design at all; indeed, it’s the antithesis of what human designers would consider good planning or an elegant design. On the other hand, it is exactly what one would expect as a result of cobbling together fortuitous accidents, stringing together helpful scraps into an outcome that may not be pretty, but works. That’s all evolution needs from developmental processes: something that works well enough, no matter how awkward or needlessly complex it may seem.” [1] – P. Z. Meyers [A former computer software developer who switched to Drosophila embryology.] (As posted by L. Stephen Coles, M.D., Ph.D., Co-Founder, Los Angeles Gerontology Research Group.

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Smart Voter | Verified Voting | Election Online

Every state should have a site like Smart Voter, which presently covers elections in California, Ohio, and now, New York.

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reading

crucify your television | resurrect your brain

<h3 class="sidebar-title">Find Audio Books</h3>

<h3 class="sidebar-title">Find More Books</h3>

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web 13.0

Get Dreamhosting from $7.95/mo.This page was origingally proposed as a catch-as-catch-can assortment of Web N.0 (whatever-point-oh) widgets and gadgets and doo-dads and trendy trinkets pertaining to content publication, syndication, aggregation, and valuation (social, topical, temporal); lacking which, one is proven a clueless phlunktard. The direct relevance to this actual blog is questionable and this variety of content may have to find a new home elsewhere.

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Those aren't boring OLD newspaper ads, they're NEW GOOGLE newspaper ads

Finally, this should revive the entire print newspaper industry. Haven’t you heard? All you have to do is slap the alchemical name Google on dogcrap and it’s instantly transmuted into chocolate mousse.

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Book TV to Rebroadcast Kurzweil Interview

If you missed it, Book TV’s In Depth: Ray Kurzweil will re-air on Monday, Nov. 6 at 12am EST and Saturday, Nov. 11 at 11am EST.

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Rerouting Brain Circuits with Implanted Chips

MIT Technology Review: A new brain chip being tested in monkeys could one day reconnect brain areas damaged by stroke or spinal-cord injury. By Emily Singer

Donoghue's chip, which is already being tested in human trials, uses many recording electrodes, but it currently doesn't have the ability to stimulate other parts of the brain or body. (With his device, neural signals are sent to a computer, which decodes the information and uses it to move a cursor on a computer screen. See "Implanting Hope," March 2005, and "Brain Chips Give Paralyzed Patients New Powers.") However, Donoghue says he is currently working on stimulating capabilities as well.

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Physicists observe new property of matter

PhysOrg.com

"What we found was the emergence of spontaneous coherence in an exciton gas."

Spontaneous Coherence? Now just stop and think about that for a minute. As I was saying … over the next couple of decades there will be disruptive new discoveries about the fundamental nature of matter that will radically transform our view of the world and our place in it. Hang on, because this party ain’t even started.

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status

06/19/08 Finally smashing all the mirrors and physically moving all databases over from .info to .com. If you can’t see this message, at least you’ll know why. Yes, I know … right … it’s called a “joke,” however poorly executed.

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Don't Worry, Be Aspie

An instant classic quotation from SuperSurvival:

"Considering all the stupid and destructive things the uplifted chimps we call 'normal' humans have done between (or maybe because of) their grooming sessions and dominance displays, I would almost think that we need aspies to protect the human species from itself."
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From Molecule to Metaphor

I hope I can make it to Jerome A. Feldman’s talk today. BOLD and EXCITING are feeble understatements to describe the efforts in pursuit of a Unified Cognitive Science; which, as far as I understand it, is an absolute prerequisite to safe and effective uploading.

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Post-WP Import

Oh boy, now I’ve got work to do. At least it looks like the posts and comments came through okay; although CSS is fairly hosed, which means lots of images will be sized incorrectly for awhile. More marginal content updates, later. In the meantime and in the interest of wasting time, the former site is hereby dubbed Retrovalent, and a beta blogger site dubbed Betavalent.

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about

 

indiscriminately tautological obfuscatory exegesis

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Bye, Bye, Blogger

It’s a bittersweet necessity, but I just can’t abide the MESS that Google has made of Blogger, post-acquisition. While blogger-status.blogspot.com repeatedly reminds us that “beta users are not affected by this outage,” LONG TIME LOYAL USERS are both AFFECTED and UNABLE TO MOVE to the new platform. So, since the dawn of blogging, I’ve been using Blogger but will now move to WordPress 2.0; in large part due to WP’s wise development of a content and comment import system based upon the work of Andy Skelton.

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I2 - Infective Invective

This is a one-time deflection to route a particular meme stream to a more appropriate frequency. For all the histrionic heavenly hyperbole you could ever want or need, be sure to tune in to I2: Infective Invective. We now return you to our regularly scheduled programming.

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From Molecule to Metaphor - Towards a Unified Cognitive Science

***SYMBOLIC SYSTEMS FORUM***
From Molecule to Metaphor: Towards a Unified Cognitive Science by Jerry Feldman Computer Science Division and Institute for Cognitive and Brain Sciences, UC Berkeley
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And you may ask yourself, "What is Rational Longevity?"

Existence is Wonderful: “Supporting longevity research is acknowledging that there is nothing special about aging that makes it any less solvable than any other complex engineering problem – it’s not a mystical force or a cosmic directive, it’s a biological process. And the means of counteracting this process won’t be mystical forces either – they’ll be the result of a lot of hard work and scientific inquiry.”

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Toward a Substrate Independent Engineered Subjective Qualia

In the words of the ever uber salient, George Dvorsky, "Protopanpsychism and the consciousness conundrum, or why we shouldn't assume uploads." He writes:

The other broad approach to the issue of consciousness is emergence theory, the idea that self-awareness and qualia can arise from complex computational dynamics in the brain. The critical assumption here is that mind’s architecture is largely computational, but that consciousness emerges through the concert of myriad neuronal interactions. In this sense, consciousness is an epiphenomenon or metaphenomenon of the brain’s machinations.This approach to cognition is clearly essential, but it is not sufficient.

I was particularly happy to read this essay because it dramatically clarifies some ideas I shared on StumbleUpon, when asked by JollySpaniard (architect of the incomparably interesting Brain Parades on MemeTherapy.Net), "What's your 'pet prediction' of something that might happen in the next decade or two?" as a followup to his earlier stumbler poll, "What is the strangest thing you believe to be true?" In my case, both questions share the same answer. The strangest things that I believe to be true, I also believe will become better understood over the next couple of decades.

On Sept 30, 2006, I wrote to JollySpaniard:

For my part, the strangest thing I believe to be true is that Intelligent Design is on to something; but not what the feuding factions think they're on to. Remember, the Big Bang was first proposed by a clergyman, Father Georges Lemaître. The Big Bang was widely criticized as positing a Creation Event from which a Creator could be asserted into the scientific disciplines. A very similar argument is now leveled at so-called I.D. However, my own atheist belief is that Intelligence may be as palpable a force as any of the quantum entangling forces. In fact, it may be Intelligence that explains entangled behavior of quantum particles. Perhaps this is how one entangled particle "knows" the state of the other. My specific weird belief and pet prediction is the suspicion that just as the Big Bang adapted to the subsequently corroborating data, new OBJECTIVE DATA WILL EMERGE to suggest and subsequently bear out the influence of a "universally embedded intelligence" as a constituent feature of the observable and measurable universe. What some of us presently refer to as extropy, the inverse of entropy, could turn out to be Detectable Intelligence. This is a very quick and sloppy way to put it, but hopefully it is clear that I believe both sides of the present I.D. debate to be wrong for distinctly opposing myopic reasons. Put another way, if there's a Star Wars "Force," that "force" just might turn out to be Intelligence. Human Brains may not create Intelligence, they may simply be attuned -- like radio receivers -- to what is already there, in the ether. Of course, some antennas are far more effective and efficient than others.

I had no idea at the time that I was essentially describing some version of protopanpsychism. Then, imagine my surprise when I read, "This has lead to the development of what is known as quantum consciousness theory, which postulates the idea that consciousness is indelibly tied to quantum processes – that the brain is essentially a quantum computer utilized by an observer to “decohere” quantum superposition." This is not qualitatively different from what I was attempting to express a month ago when I spoke of intelligence as a fundamental force, particle, or energy that might have something to do with quantum entanglement. Interesting, at least from the perspective of this wannabe idiot savant.

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Cyberwar, God And Television - Interview with Paul Virilio (1994)

0The year was 1993. Somewhere in a remote cubicle in Illinois, a couple of kids named Eric Bina and Marc Andreessen had grown tired of tunneling through gopher holes and fiddling with ASCII/BIN file transfer protocol modes. So they came up with something better called Mosaic and thereby “invented the internet” in the same way that Columbus “discovered” North America. Like the so-called new world, the internet had long been in existence, but soon it would become accessible to literally everyone.

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Pretty Horrific, but Not Terrorism

When will these thick-headed Americans get it through their skulls? There is such a HUGE difference between “horrifying” and “terrifying” … I mean, this guy didn’t MEAN to terrorize, only to brutalize; so the fact that the entire community is terrorized is merely horrifying; and not threatening to national security only to THEIR security, so it’s all okay, it’s not terrorism. Unless we find out he was a Muslim; or maybe he had 1/64th Arabic blood or something … THEN it would be terrorism; but for now, according to all the people with requisite badges, uniforms, and job titles on their business cards, this local act of terror was only ‘pretty horrific.’ So, I guess that makes it safe to go back to school in the morning; after all, it’s not like this was TERRORISM or anything really bad like that. School gunman left suicide note.

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Net neutrality - The Good, Bad, and Mostly UGLY

It’s crucial to keep this thinking alive and active, 90 days after its publication The Buzz Report: Net neutrality: bring it on Molly Wood wrote:”You know, I wasn’t really sure that Net neutrality legislation was such a good idea. Regulation of the Internet in any form seems scary, a bit hasty, and potentially dangerous. So I was holding out for a hero–maybe the FCC (PDF link), or just a groundswell of grassroots activism. But I can’t wait any longer. I’ve decided to set aside my misgivings about overregulation. I now believe that we must have legislation to protect the open and equal nature of the Internet, or, sadly, the Internet must be regulated as a utility, just like the highways and the water pipes–and we must have one or the other right away. Why? Because I really believe that the telcos and the cable companies pushing for a tiered Internet will cheerfully turn the Internet into a lopsided disaster of have and have-not traffic that just happens to be filled with perfectly accessible content created by those very same telcos and cable companies. Basically, there’s a pile of money on the table, and these folks are proving every day that they cannot be trusted.”

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If You Haven't Wiki'd in Awhile

0Wikimedia is not merely about creating an exhaustively cute and comprehensive little webby encyclopedia. If you haven’t wiki’d in awhile, there are all kinds of interesting experiments and projects going on all the time. But then, this from a kid who thought it fun to read the dictionary like any other story book, so you’ve gotta’ consider the source.

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Glorious Times ... Or Not

Radical Life Extension, sans radical Quality of Life assurances, equals Radical Life Apprehension.

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Not Good Enough. Not Even CLOSE.

This is way off topic, but due to the weeks events, I must advise that all be sure to remember this, the next time your life, or the life of someone you love, is destroyed by a combination of sheer ineptitude and flat lies by government workers; against whom, we truly now have no recourse. As the brutish, blundering beast better known as the County of Santa Clara puts it:

Many times the decisions made by the police officers and sheriff deputies will restrict the freedom and liberty of people. Often these decisions materially affect the course of people's lives.
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The Meaning of Patriot Day

0Happy "We're All Still Really Terrified" Day, also known as, "If You're NOT Really, Really Afraid; or Say a Single Word Countering Our Fear, then YOU'RE Next On The Great List of Suspected Terrorists" Day.

At 9:02AM EST, C-SPAN showed live footage of an earnest First Lady, Laura Bush, trying desperately to elbow her autistic husband as he swayed to the music of "America" during memorial services in NYC. Against a wall of stoic, steadfast firefighters, the Commander in Chief couldn't stand at attention long enough to get through a sappy anthem or two. Look, I lost friends in the towers, too, but the legacy that America is on the road to creating is the ANTITHESIS of that for which many of those who perished would most desperately hope.

At 9:34AM EST, C-SPAN then broadcast the United States Military Choir leading the group of mourners at the Pentagon -- the seat of U.S. Military Power -- in the distinctly Christian hymn "Oh God, Our Help in Ages Past." BUT THIS ISN'T A HOLY WAR, it's a political war against fascism; our version versus theirs.

Over this same period of time, on NASA-TV, the space shuttle Atlantis crew opened the hatch and joined the International Space Station crew to continue construction of the P3-P4 truss systems, designed to double the electrical capacity of the ISS and enable further station assembly. THESE SCIENTISTS AND ENGINEERS ARE THE TRUE DEFENDERS OF HOPE AND PROGRESS FOR HUMANITY. This work is the most promising and consequential for the enduring long term goodwill of humanity, but where is the attention of the mass media fixated, but on fear-mongering memorials and the ritualistic reading of honorable, but ghostly names.

These activities do NOTHING for those lost; they are enduring indulgences for us, who remain. How long will we keep this level of tearful fanfare up? Five years? Seven? Ten? Fifty? There are those who sincerely believe that this day should grind to a halt for everyone, into all eternity. I'm sure survivors Nazi camps, of D-Day, of HIROSHIMA felt the same; but that's not how it works. We all have tragedies in our lives that stop OUR lives, every anniversary, for the duration of our time on the planet -- but if each group's tragedy stopped the entire world for a day, the world would be stopped, permanently -- in paralyzing woe and grief.

This does not strike me as a particularly honorable way to memorialize anyone.

Certainly, I love, honor, and miss the individuals lost from my life, just as much as any nominally compassionate human being ought, but I guarantee that the LAST thing many of those lost on Nine Eleven would want is for us to drag around for decades in sackcloth and ashes while simultaneously cutting the budgets for MOVING FORWARD and increasing budgets for dealing out mayhem and further curtailments of public liberty. Personally, I am deeply offended on behalf of all those lost on Nine Eleven, by the way that the historic event is becoming an anchor that keeps the USS America permanently battered and bashed in a perpetually storm-blown Vast Sea of Fear rather than serving as a reminder to pay attention to that which is just below the surface, and setting sail for new, more promising, more stable lands.

So, what *is* just below the surface of all this memorialistic media blitzkrieg? In a lasting legacy to Bush II's incomparably inarticulate ineptitude, the 9/11 Remembrance Day is called Patriot Day, as opposed to the pre-existing, longstanding anniversary of the beginning of the American Revolution, called Patriots' or Patriot's Day, which I well remember celebrating in grade school in 1960's Illinois. Other sources describe it as, "Patriot's Day, the third Monday of April (Apr 19, 2004). Commemorates the first battle of the Revolutionary War on April 19, 1775. Also known as Battles of Lexington and Concord Day."

But don't worry, you're not alone, because Republicans are already confusing the hell out of the two, as well.

U.S. House Joint Resolution 71 was approved by a vote of 407-0 on October 25, 2001. It requested that the President designate September 11 of each year as "Patriot Day." President George W. Bush signed the resolution into law on December 18, 2001 (as Public Law 107-89). It is a discretionary day of remembrance.

What's the big deal in a name? Well, for one, if you think the CAUSE and IDEALS of the former Patriot's Day -- the very American Revolution itself -- ought be displaced by the hystrionic hyperbole of the latter Patriot Day -- a largely media-age-driven politically expedient reaction to a singularly horrible, but clearly comparatively isolated tragedy -- then my friend, you and I are indeed at distinct odds.

To allow the essence of Patriot Day to coopt the meaning of the foundational word; to deprecate, eradicate, and obviate THE ORIGINAL 200 YEAR OLD PATRIOT'S DAY, is perhaps one of the most ideologically undermining and symbolically diabolical maneuvers that I've witnessed in my lifetime.

As complex as the issues raised by this day, this salient excerpt from Dave Winer's Scripting News: 9/11/2001 does a good job of bringing Focused Attention to the ideas that Patriot's Day ought most embody. Winer wrote:

John Perry Barlow compares today's events to the burning of the Reichstag that led to the Nazi takeover of the German government in 1933. He said in a published email "Within a few hours, we will see beginning the most vigorous efforts to end what remains of freedom in America. Those of who are willing to sacrifice a little - largely illusory - safety in order to maintain our faith in the original ideals of America will have to fight for those ideals just as vigorously."

A number of individual (although unverified) accounts can be found at the Rocketboom911 wiki.

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Darwinism Under Fire?

Some interesting points were made today on C-SPAN’s Book TV, unfortunately, I did not catch enough of the program to get the book title and author names, I’ll try to look them up later. Whatever my personal views on the subject, one could not possibly miss some of the unexpected parallels between the more intellectually rigorous proponents of so-called Intelligent Design and some branches of Extropian/Posthuman/Transhuman Philosophy.

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How to Code a Human Zombie (Distributed Agent) Bot Net

“Sometimes, the wisdom of crowds doesn’t work. Sometimes, the crowd is gaming you. It’s the tyranny of the well-organized minority.”

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Shopping For Nine Eleven Cards in the Hallmark Aisle

0IMHO, Time Magazine just happened to create one of the more poetically accurate covers of the Nine Eleven Fifth Anniversary Media Frenzy. Sure, this week is as good as any to think about these things; however, by reducing the events of that day to a national Hallmark Anti-Holiday, we dishonor both the lives lost and the memories of their survivors. My bet is that the vast majority will look at that cover in the grocery store checkout line, mind their own business rather than dare pick up a copy, and move on. The problem is that the only way out of the mess we’re in as a society is to pay attention to our surroundings, to daily embody a deep sense of personal responsibility for our environment, and fulfill our duty as brother’s keeper each and every day – if we are to become a better nation.

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A Diversionary Pop Culture Moment

0Look, I'm only human, so when Katie Couric asks for tagline submissions, I'm just a mindless sheep automaton like the rest.

Now, I didn't wait with baited breath for Katie's Evening News Debutante Ball, but I did click on the stupid link after reading the MarketWatch Ceremonial Flogging by Jon Friedman.

My inane contribution:

Keep it High Fructose Corn Syrup Sweet and Simple, just like Katie. Say what you mean and mean what you say:

"Good night."

Katie's smile is the only signoff that has a chance of being added to the historical list of signoffs and she'll be cute for as long as Dick Clark was charming. It ain't broke, so don't fix it!

When Suri Cruise takes over the CBS Moonbase New Columbia anchor desk in 2050, she'll play the same historical montage of tough-guy signoffs, only to encounter Katie where she can only say, "and then there was Katie, and THAT SMILE; which neither I, nor anyone, will ever come close to matching."

And that's the way it is; metavalent, out. :)

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Not Even a Mouse (gesture, that is) in IE7

0How in the world do you botch such a basic thing as this? Users have to dig through endless piles of half-baked, half-developed, half-retail, half-open source plug-ins just to find this Mouse Gesture Add On for IE7.

And this is RC1, a Release Candidate, which means that it is pretty much a done deal that IE7 will not have mouse gestures. Brilliant. I guess I shouldn't complain, because it's just all the more reason to

Opera 9 - Your Web, Your Choice keep using Opera (by far the most standards-compliant) or

Upgrade to Firefox 1.5!upgrade to Firefox (by far the most open to innovation).

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Is Privacy Being Privatized Out of Existence?

0This is a LONG one, in two parts. First, a little bit about Inbox.com. Secondly, I’ll explain why the service fits in with the subject of this post.

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Watchdog Warning - AOL’s Free Software is Malware

0Speaking of dog watching, I continue to stick by Vonage. My shares from the Directed Share Program went from $17.00 to $6 to presently settle between $8 and $9 – and I’m sticking with it. If it’s statesmanship you’re looking for, try this on for size: I won’t begrudge anyone getting in and riding back up to $20+ with me by this time next year. Yep, you get to more than double your coinage and I’ll only make $3/share. Now that’s statesmanship.

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The Future is Here - Welcome to the CARN-Age!

C’mon and join the joyous jamboree! Now that Jebus has changed His mind – for confirmation, just ask your local fundamentalist flip-flopper who THEN screamed “charge” and NOW cries “retreat” – it is finally time for all good RepubliCARNs to take full ownership of their share of the CARN-Age.

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Zero Hope for Cognitive Liberty?

0In a society that is actually wasting tax dollars on this kind of foolishness. This is worse than pitiful. I can’t even think of a word or phrase that is sufficiently embarrassed and repulsed at the same time. What a waste.

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New, Unimproved Bush iGod Strategy

0Writing for The Nation, Jonathan Schell says it’s Too Late for Empire and, I might add, for what I’ve come to refer to as the Bush administration’s imperialist Global Occupation Doctrine (iGOD) Strategy.

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Transvision & Bostrom covered in Nature

0Dr. Nick Bostrom: “I don’t think healthy people are going to be attracted by mechanical or electronic enhancements in the near future. You can get most or all of the same benefits from having the same device outside the body. If you want to access Google, you don’t have to have a fibre-optic cable wired into your visual cortex. You can just have a computer screen. That saves you a trip to the surgeon, and it’s easier to upgrade.”

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When do uplifted nonhumans become citizens?

In When do uplifted nonhumans become citizens? George Dvorsky explains that, “We don’t have tiers of citizenship in liberal democracies—to do so would be a form of apartheid. I think it would be an extremely bad idea to start “demoting” uplifted nonhumans or psychological delayed humans based on some personhood metric. It’s a binary concept - you’re either an equal citizen under the law or you’re not a citizen.”

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Can Cheesy Sci-Fi Titles Help Take the Edge Off Looming Sociotechnological Discontinuities?

0Granted, this is from Forbes, so you have to look past the cheesy Saturday morning B-Sci-Fi title, The Robots Are Coming. Still, it’s better than nothing in terms of getting investors to begin realizing that there is this emerging interdisciplinary mashup of scientific and technological capabilities that are on the verge of producing INTENTIONAL human-initiated and possibly human-directed evolutionary change.

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Running out of Young Guns? No problem, Send Retirees.

0You thought you’d paid your dues. You thought you had earned the right to a civilian life. In the words of an old commercial, “not exactly.”

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Army Corps Admits Flaws in New Orleans Levees

It’s hurricanes Katrina and Rita week. In the New York Times, Army Corps Admits Flaws in New Orleans Levees: “Call it a mea culpa, or call it a dry recognition, or admission, or whatever — but we’re not ducking our accountability and responsibility in this.’” The chief engineer of the Army Corps, Lt. Gen. Carl A. Strock, said the report showed that “we missed something in the design,” particularly in the construction of the drainage canal floodwalls that caused so much of the flooding.

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Hezbollah continue to run the table

Thomas P.M Barnett, points out that Hezbollah continue to run the table.

Hezbollah nails the war and now the peace. Do ya think Iran had preloaded its SysAdmin effort? (Take one Hezbollah and add money.)The real embarrassment here?
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CBS beats CNN to the Web Video Punch

0Who’d have thunk it? And yet, CBS has taken the first step toward the most logical web broadcasting model. As opposed to CNN’s retarded Pipeline program (I refuse to even link to it and it’s over-engineered, over-priced, b-grade, non-broadcast psuedo content), CBS will simply send its broadcast to a wider audience; on the web. CBS To Air Evening News Live On Web, Simulcast Of ‘Evening News With Katie Couric’ To Begin Sept. 5 - CBS News.

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A Flash of Creative Genius

If you had any question about whether there exist multiple universes, just compare this reality to the reality experienced by the average south Lebanese resident in recent months. Of course, if you’ve ever dabbled with flash universe in the least, you’ll especially appreciate this contrast.

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After the Israeli Army was Defeated ...

0Link TV - Mosaic provides an overview of news coverage from Al Jazeera and other leading middle east news networks. REQUIRED viewing for any westerner who aspires to gaining even HALF a clue about what is going on in the middle east. Sure, it’s “their” propaganda, but it’s no less valid to “them” than “our” propaganda is, to “us.” Thanks to ETHERNET TV, more people than ever can finally gain access to more perspectives than ever.

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Humanitarian Relief for the Victors?

alms for the rich Alms for the poor victors! Alms for the poor victors! This is precisely the kind of arrogant hypocrisy that Israel’s opponents find revolting. Frankly, over the past several years I increasingly identify with anti-Israeli sentiment. The more that I question what I was taught as a child in Sunday school, read the history, and simply OBSERVE Israel’s behavior, the more I oppose both it’s objectives and it’s means.

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Unedited Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Interview

Still looking for a link to the actual video. Generally, all content that airs on C-SPAN is available on its website shortly after airtime. If you missed in in the media last week, here’s a description of what I’m looking for at TVNewser. As soon as I can find a link to the actual interview, I’ll update this post. Drop a comment if you can help out, thanks.

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New Blogger Beta All The Buzz

0A new Blogger Beta is out. At first glance, it looks like some great new improvements. As quickly as I tend to critique the 3vi1 corporate GOOG beast; I still try to be as fair as my significant subjective biases allow.

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Akbar Ahmed on Q & A - C-SPAN's New Interview Series

0PROGRAM NOTE: “Akbar Ahmed discusses Islamic fundamentalism, why he believes some terrorists act in the name of Islam and his goal to spread the peaceful teachings of Islam to younger generations.”

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Are Scientists the Biggest Laggards?

0It wouldn’t be the first time. I remember being virtually laughed out of the room at Xerox PARC in 1997 for insisting that what would come to be called the Ethernet First Mile needed to be built immediately; that broadband, and beyond, were absolutely vital to the advancement of the internet.

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How Does Order Arise in the Universe?

0With all the chaos and ignorance manifest in and among every human experience and societal systems, how can anything reasonable or organized ever stand a chance? In this episode of Closer To Truth, two nobel laureates lend a measure of comfort and hope for those of us who can otherwise barely tolerate the seemingly accelerating disarray of our American dystopia.

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Thinking of Thinking for Thinking's Sake

0For a “new millennium,” the world is sure a bloody mess, these days, proving once again that newer is not always better. Even really smart people get disappointed, aggravated, and yeah, even PISSED OFF at the rampant ignorance and stupidity.

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Planet of No Apes

0While we’re on the topic of terrorism, here’s a quite well done enviropolitical guerilla marketing spot. Guerilla, get it? =SMACK!= “Ow! That hurt!” Sorry, your browser doesn’t support the EMBED tag. You can try a click here.

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Bottled Bomb Water Lockdown

It’s in the water. And the ketchup packets that go with your McDonald’s fries that you JUST GOT, RIGHT THERE IN THE AIRPORT. And the Starbucks cup that you are DRINKING FROM … yeah, that might be a bomb, too.

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A Final Exam?

0Perhaps this is where TSA workers come from. Hey, I’m just saying what millions of people think every day, but they’re AFRAID to say it.

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All Value Is Ascribed

0An empirical case study, courtesy of one red paperclip. Yeah, it’s old news, but worth reiterating anyway and stuffing away here in the archives; to which no sane person would ascribe the slightest value. Hence, empirical case study #2: this site.

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AOL Shoots Itself In The Privates

0YOUR private information, that is. Forbes.com reports, “[AOL] inadvertently revealed to the world what 650,000 of its subscribers searched for as they browsed for online information. The searches often contained data that helped identify the users themselves, including names, Social Security numbers and local landmarks that they had looked up.

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The Troops Are Just Fine

0Can you believe that the Weekly WhiteHouse.Gov newsletter actually distributed this photo? Why does the President need to sport aseptic protective gear to shake hands with a recuperating soldier? If U.S. soldier aren’t being exposed to anything POTENTIALLY CONTAGIOUS, why the prophylactic garb there, Chief? And since I worked in the operating room of a major research hospital in Texas for FIVE YEARS, make-believe stories about hospital protocol won’t cut it. Doctors DO NOT wear this stuff when making their rounds; this type of gear is reserved for asceptic environments like the O.R. At best, it’s utter incompetence that such a photo would be circulated by the P.R. monkeys, at all.

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Current Market Forecast

Okay, I’m going to start tossing out my Market Forecasts every so randomly often and we’ll see what kind of moronomaven I turn out to be.  As of today, August 7, 2006:

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We NEVER see this on American TV. Why?

Journalists who ask questions. Is that too much to ask for? Wow. Just wow. Please watch the videos on this pages. These are not wild-eyed lunatic anti-semites, these are current and former U.S. Government Officials asking Israeli Officials how it is that they can justify doing to the Palestinians what was done to them by Nazis.

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IM 2.0

0You too? Then try out the new CHAT. There’s also a tab up top of the page. In deference to current Buzzword 2.0 Regime 2.0, I’m calling this IM 2.0. Trillian, Gabbly, Meebo, and others have all been taking different approaches toward “universal” IM. It’s a hell of a challenge, to be sure, and I’m super impressed with each and every stride these wildly underpaid, over inventive developers roll out.

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Mapping Israeli Assault - July 12-August 2

I don’t know if the idea of “proportionate response” really helps the debate when one is seeking to annhilate another – for whatever reason – but if nothing else, the maps here help to provide a better context for what is happening.

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Amidst the Chaos - Atlantis space shuttle ready for launch

0“Atlantis arrived at Launch Pad 39B on Aug. 2, riding atop the mobile launch platform and carried by the crawler transporter. Once at the pad, the vehicle was enclosed by the rotating service structure. Preparations for launch continue, including the installation of the payload in Atlantis’ cargo bay The launch window for this mission to resume construction of the International Space Station opens Aug. 27” (Spaceflight.Nasa.Gov).

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Stop, Now, What's that Sound?

This entry comes to us from the “If I Already Agree with the Reports, It’s News; If I Don’t Agree, or If New Facts Call Into Question My Existing Worldview, It’s Enemy Propaganda” Department.

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Exploring the UberMetaSupraBe-O-Sphere

Humanity’s expanding contextual awareness is definitely reaching either an asymptote, an inflection point, a quantum jump, or similar discontinuity. The buzzword of the day is singularity, though Eliezer Yudkowsky’s intelligence explosion is probably a more accurate term. Yet, the expansion of contexual awareness is more than that, as well.

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Global Nanotech Investment Summit

Not that it’s nearly as monumental as the Monday Night Football channel change, but for what it’s worth.

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Perhaps the Biggest Non-Event of the New Millennium

WSJ.Com shocked the world today with this earth-shaking announcement that means everything in the world of sport is now – as never before – exactly the same, only different. What a phantasmagorical non-content noisemaker this stands to become.<blockquote>Two staples of television football – Monday Night Football on ABC and the Sunday night game on ESPN – are no more.</blockquote>Oooo …. are no more … this is sooo hewwwge!<blockquote>Monday night’s National Football League game will now appear on ESPN, and the Sunday night game moves to NBC. Both networks need to re-create their football identities and persuade legions of fans to change deeply ingrained TV-viewing habits.</blockquote>Yeah, man … REALLY, REALLY, DEEPLY INGRAINED habits of clicking on channel 3 instead of 47. What a tremendous, world-tilting SHIFT this will be; punching TWO NUMBERS on the remote instead of just one! “Oh NFL and TV networks, you’re SO BRAVE; I luuv yew!”

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Hope for the Lost Children of Hope?

Highly doubtful, but then, one can always hope for the hope to keep hope alive, I suppose.

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The 411 on 911 Theory -- Conspiracy Mongering Nutjobs or Myth Busting Patriots?

0“The truth about 9/11 is that we still don’t know the truth; and we should.” – Lt. Col. Bob Bowman, former Air Force intercepter pilot.

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Conservatives Without Conscience

0When the banter is all stripped away, it’s not difficult to confess that both major political parties have been taken over by extreme factions within their own ranks. Howard Dean is certainly NOT a valid representative of my own small-d democratic-leaning views.

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Conflicting Crash Reports

An interesting post on Backfence.com says that Silicon Valley is in denial over a housing crash in progress.<blockquote>Prices disconnected from fundamentals. House prices are far beyond any historically known relationship to rents or salaries. Rents are less than half of mortgage payments. Salaries cannot cover mortgages except in the very short term, by using adjustable interest-only loans.</blockquote>Backfence.com - Palo Alto, Ca. local community news, information, events and advertising.

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MyAndOnlyMy Southwest.Com

0In today’s War on Customer Service Terrorism report, we feature the illustrious Southwest Airlines. As is often the case in this erratic series of reports, the story begins with a highly esteemed, respected company. A company I’ve done business with for some time, often years, based upon many happy transactions and an ongoing commitment to value. So when the Customer Service Terrorists strike, it’s almost always completely unexpected and often explosively disruptive; hence, Terrorism. To be even more precise, what we are seeing is a War On Customers via Service Terrorism.

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It's still about THE OPEN ACCESS, STUPID

I’ve been momentarily transported to Net Policy heaven by watching this exchange between Net Prophets and Pioneers Vint Cerf and Dave Farber on C-SPAN2, unpacking and disambiguating the latest bumper-sticker topic of ‘net neutrality.’  What makes it particularly heavenly, for a fallen warrior in the 1990’s net wars, is watching each of these RealMedia RTSP streams over EthernetTV!

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Bush Smacks Down Soldier's Questions

President Bush: “Thanks for giving me a chance to visit and have a little lunch with you. God bless you all.”

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Ten tech-related YouTube clips you shouldn't miss

This entire CNET feature is more than worthy of exploration, but you just CAN’T MISS what I hereby dub a YouTube Investigative Series on Net Neutrality. Obviously, to use Senator Stevens tech jargon, the U-Tube is one of the more popular of the various interwebnet Tubes that make up the large interTube net.

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How Benevolent Are You?

As Spidey taught us, “With great arrogance, comes great condescention.” Or maybe that’s just the way I remember it. Do you dare question MY powers of recollection!?

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Another EXPERT backs Google

Well, now. There you go. Now that Alex The Expert has deemed all things Fair and Balanced, that should put the whole issue to rest … again … right? Until next time, anyway. Apparently, it doesn’t matter how 3vi1 the actual effect on customers, so long as anti-evil handwaving is of reasonable visibility. “‘Based on my evaluation, I conclude that Google’s efforts to combat click fraud are reasonable,’ Alexander Tuzhilin, a professor of information systems at New York University, said in the court filing.”

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Google Is Still a One-Trick Pony

THANK GOODNESS that Paul Kedrosky over at Seeking Alpha has it dead right. I am so sick and tired of this whole gobbldly goog crap. Believe me, Sergey does NOT walk on water and don’t get me started on the 3vi1 evil trip again.

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How Some Netflix Users Lie To Themselves About How Hip They Think They Are

You just can’t feign vibrant eclectic taste, man. You either have it, or you don’t.

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Hosting Changes In Progress

GoDaddy says that DNS changes can take 48 hours to propagate. Of course, the process is usually much, much faster these days; but just in case things are screwed up for a couple of days, I wanted to let readers know about the changes in progress.

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We Now Return You To News That Matters

I would SO prefer to keep my attention on stuff like this. The only reason this blog has been inundated by ranting about the War on Customer Service Terrorism is that the terrorists have been on the attack more than usual, of late. It’s MUCH more METAVALENT to dwell on Things That Matter, such as this, from ScienceDaily.com.

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Mission Accomplished - White House Dignity Restored as U.S. President Sexually Harrasses German Chancellor

0One of Bush’s blathering blurbs during his initial campaign was the mantra, “I will restore dignity to the White House.” Well, what can we say, but Mission Accomplished. Imagine what the Moral Moron Majority would have had to say if that were Bill Clinton sizing up the German meat market!? Here’s another take on YouTube if that first link gives you any trouble. This isn’t the least bit funny, it is the essence of male chauvinism in the workplace. I cannot even COMPREHEND how inappropriate this was. Was it also inappropriate for Bill Clinton to do what he did? Of course. But we are talking about GROPING the Chancellor of Germany, here! Unbelievable!

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More Cust. Svc. Terrorists - Cingular Mandatory SIM Replacements

0After you read this entry, please call Calvin Ton at +01.408.507.7206 and let him know what you think about his lack of responsiveness to a customer and what you think of Cingular. Or email him at phoc.ton@cingular.com. Seriously, I don’t know how else to begin fighting back against the growing Customer Disservice Terrorism Attacks from corporate America. See the past few weeks of entries for various examples.

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An Infinite Number of Yahoos at an Infinite Number of Keyboards

Please click on any of the screen shots below to get full res image. Here’s how it works:

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Rallies For LEGAL Immigration

0ORMOND BEACH, Fla., July 17 /PRNewswire/ – A group of concerned citizens known as People of the USA (http://www.peopleoftheusa.com/) have joined together to battle against illegal immigration. Larry Zdun, the group founder, said, “PeopleoftheUSA.com was formed to promote the deportation of illegal immigrants and terrorists from the United States. That is our purpose. We are here to stay and we won’t stop fighting for the American citizens.”

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Beyond When Pigs Fly

[Experimental pig number] 78-6 is, in fact, only mostly dead – the common term for her state is, believe it or not, suspended animation. Long the domain of transhumanist nut-jobs [like metavalent], cryogenic suspension may be just two years away from clinical trials on humans (presuming someone can solve the sticky ethical problems). Trauma surgeons can’t wait – saving people with serious wounds, like gunshots, is always a race against the effects of blood loss. When blood flow drops, toxins accumulate; just five minutes of low oxygen levels causes brain death.

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Mercury atomic clock keeps time with record accuracy

“An experimental atomic clock based on a single mercury atom is now at least five times more precise than the national standard clock based on a “fountain” of cesium atoms, according to a paper by physicists at the Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in the July 14 issue of Physical Review Letters.”

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The Narrowing Digital Divide

“We’ve just passed 1 billion internet users. It’s the first communication technology to reach 1 billion users all through the same medium (more or less.) It’s reached every nation other than North Korea, which has chosen not to connect to the Internet. People in the US are now spending more time on the Internet than watching TV. But the internet is growing fastest in places where access is most sparse, like the Middle East and Africa, where it’s growing at 200% a year - growth is slowing in industrialized nations, where the market is saturated. Growth is striking in India and China, the two markets people are most interested in. Broadband is increasing at 900% a year in China, a truly astonishing rate.”

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Vista's Horizon

Intel Core 2 chips appear just in time for Vista.

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The INpire Strikes Back?

“The Quake 4 graph needs to be taken into consideration when looking at the DivX results and vice-versa. Core 2 Extreme not only produces the fastest DivX time but also churns out a decent Quake 4 framerate at the same time. “

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Ethernet Everywhere

Barron’s Online - Munificent Benefits From Municipal Wi-Fi: “AS MORE MUNICIPALITIES BUILD OUT pervasive, wireless, broadband networks offering inexpensive, or even free, wireless Internet access, we believe consumers will spend even more time and dollars online. While we are in the very early stages of this with the first major city – Anaheim, Calif., –having just gone live last week, we believe that the development of these networks and business will accelerate.”

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Who or What Shoved Push?

"Push Singh was a young MIT post doc making important contributions to AI with his Open Mind Common Sense project, a Web-based approach to acquire common sense knowledge from the general public. He was also one of KurzweilAI.net's big thinkers. He will be missed by us, and by many others."
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It's Widespread, Rampant, Spreading, Debilitating, Insidious, Undermining, and all that scary DHS kinda' stuff

What is it THIS time? I mean, besides the utterly out of control, credit-card crazy, SpendAndSpend and SpendAndSpendAndSpendAndSpend Republicans. Sure, tax may be the devil but Spend is the Beast that consumeth the world.

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AOL Can't Even Give It Away

Herb Greenberg might be too modest to yelp I TOLD YOU SO, but I’m not.

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Koo-Koo-Ka-Koobox

A Groovy Declaration of Independence from The Windows Empire

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PETA Rescue Mission for Vonage The Dog

From a Motley Foolish piece entitled, Vonage On Hold: “for every satisfied Samuel Adams sipper you have the Garden Botanika shopper and Vonage subscriber that gets burned. That’s a sticky situation because now you have upset your shareholders as well as your most faithful customers that believed in the cause enough to buy into the offering.”

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USA Getting Smart, but will Consumers Buy Smart?

In contrast to the recent bull market in stupidity we’ve seen here lately, the SMART car is coming to the US in 2008. These cars make a tremendous amount of sense for dense urban markets like the peninsula, NYC, Boston, etc., but it remains to be seen whether WEALTHY consumers will be smart enough to buy these things early-on, so that economies of scale can eventually be realized. Like every new technology, the price starts higher than most can afford and a relatively thin slice of consumers decide – by voting with their dollars – which ones will go on to be available to everyone. So be smart, bell-cow consumers, go out and place your pre-orders today.

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Customer Service Terror Level - Nuke-u-ler RED

0Live image from Customer Support.

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Netflix - Fad Diversion or National Security Threat?

0I just posted a comment in response to this post on Herb Greenberg’s Market Blog. Since it’s a moderated blog, Herb justly reserves the right to edit or reject as he sees fit, so I figured I’d also archive the full post here, in a barely remixed version with bonus pithy one-liners. I hope Herb receives my original comment on his site in the cheerful spirit intended, because I’m truly grateful for his faithful juxtaposition to Cramer’s version of Project Mayhem, aptly called Mad Money.

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YouTube a Chip Off the Ol' Guba

FYI: GUBA created the Usenet-powered version of YouTube more than five years prior to the latter’s origin. Right now, YouTube is all the groove, yet GUBA may have the networking and infrastructure guts requisite for enduring glory.

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News Refresh - Office vs. Office

Paul Murphy writes, “Is Microsoft Office better than OpenOffice? The criteria you use determine the answer. <p>For example, if you value file and data integration, open document standards, OS independence, cost, or document continuity you’ll value Openoffice over Microsoft office. </p> <p>On the other hand, if you value, umm, if you value, umm - you know, I can’t think of anything to put here that’s intrinsic to Microsoft Office; all I can think of is social compliance: preferring Microsoft Office because others prefer Microsoft office.” </p>If you missed it in March, hit it up now: » Office vs. Office | Paul Murphy | ZDNet.com

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Your Choice - TAX and Spend =or= SPEND and Spend ... and Spend ... and Spend

Meanwhile, first-quarter current account data show the U.S. for the first time is paying out more on its foreign liabilities than it earns on its overseas assets. This problem will only compound over time, Reik points out.”

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G-duh

The G-ineptitude is growing at G-oogle. Perhaps Google should have made it’s slogan “Don’t be Clueless.” Evil, for all it’s malevolence, is at the very least legendary for winning the day, much to the chagrin of the righteous. But as Ron White says, “You can’t fix stupid.”

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The Growing Inequality in America

Nothing is as simple as it seems. Perhaps the most valuable part of this Economist special report is the great bibliography with direct links to PDF source documents.

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How Evil Will Google Become?

FINALLY, as I’ve been explaining to anyone who will listen for over nine months, people are beginning to ask the right question. Not, “will goog become evil,” but rather, “HOW evil will goog demonstrate itself to have been all along?” Today, Tim Beyers asks, How Evil Will Google Become? on Yahoo! Finance

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WMD's Require Preemptive Dog Kicking

If I read the comments correctly – well, maybe not correctly but at least politely antagonistically, as is many a successful blogger’s way to fixate more eyeballs – the Preemptive Dog Kicking of VG was necessary in order to smoke out industry terrorists who could, at any moment, launch cable industry WMD’s in the form of a VOIP price war, thereby initiating and accelearting an inevitable race to the bottom of Lake Wobegin (the evil anti-lake of Wobegon, of course).

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More VOIP Dog Kicking

Yo, yo, it’s JAJAH, the web-activated telephone company. Surely this is another quick and dirty web-dialer that the “experts” say justifies the continued kicking of Vonage. But just take a look at the potential for ABUSE in this service! I just fired off several test calls to several phones numbers using Jim Cramer’s Mad Money as the source phone. Perhaps I should call the Vonage Investor Relations number, from Cramer, and level a series of death threats at specific individuals. That might be one interesting way to drive home the point about just how far Vonage is evolved beyond the so-called competitors in it’s actual EXECUTION of delivered services. Skype, Jajah, and other web-dialers are no where near as evolved as consumer telephone replacements. Both demand significant changes to the WAY that customers make and receive phone calls. Vonage suffers none of those deficits. Comcast, and other cable VOIP providers are TWICE the cost of Vonage and seek to retain the monopoly rents of the legacy telco operators. Vonage blows them away in terms of good old fashioned, consumer-grade bang-for-the-buck.

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VG - Kicking the Dog

Man, am I ever getting so tired of all the piling on over Vonage (VG). This is just another case of punishing the pioneers. NOBODY would be enjoying the huge advances in VOIP today if it were not for Vonage. This it the company that created enough competitive pressure on incumbent cable operators to force them to step up and offer VOIP, as well. Without that motivation, the odds of Comcast and others offering VOIP before 2010 drop precipitously. Even our good buddy Jim Cramer has dubbed the company “Vonage the Dog” and takes every opportunity to kick the dog under the table. I’ve been a very happy Vonage customer since 2002 and was among the early adopters who booted SBC for good and I’ve never looked back.

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The Evolution of In-Game Ads

RED HERRING on The Evolution of In-Game Ads. This is a huge, huge, huge one-to-five year opportunity. But hey, it’s YOUR opportunity cost to blow as you see fit.

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Human Enhancement Preceeded by Kittie Enhancement

Oh no, two Slash echoes in a row. I promise, it’s not a trend, but the subject matter is just too relevant to pass up. This week, non-annoying Allergy-Free Kittens Produced, next week non-annoying humans? We can only hope.

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Outsourcing - Just Because You CAN, Doesn't Mean You Should

Once in awhile, a Slashdot echo is justified. This is one of those whiles: Techies Asked To Train Foreign Replacements. When will American Labor grow a spine again? Risk severance pay? WTF? Below is a basic recipe for helping the bean counters better quantify and understand the costs of such bomabastic tactics. Like any recipe, the cook must season to taste; omit or add ingredients as appropriate to the specific sitation. The basics:

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Winamp 5.23 Jumps The Shark

I guess it was only a matter of time before AOL ruined Winamp; still, it’s a disappointment to see this fine, nostalgic player finally jump the shark. I can’t even bear to link to the site, it’s so bad. While Winamp has gradually become more and more bloated over time, it was forced to keep pace with other players and in doing so did a reasonable job of not exceeding the competitor’s Feature-To-Crap Ratio.

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What do you think about Yahoo Mail Beta?

A very quick report on Yahoo Mail Beta (YMB) and Firefox. I don’t use IE frequently enough to comment on YMB on IE, but with Firefox, I can say that it’s a still too much of a resource hog. I love the new mail interface, but I generally have 10 or 15 tabs open at any given time, and in this environment, YMB is excruciatingly slow.

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All Clear

As reported yesterday, the thousand year reign of evil officially plagued the earth …

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Wringing out Bush the Beast

For it is written, “A day is as a thousand years and a thousand years is as a day.” And so ends the Thousand Year Reign of Terror by the evil world ruler, GWB.

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An Illustrated Guide to IPsec

Alas, yeah, and behold … for it was between and beyond the Ringing In and Wringing Out of the GW Bush Beast, that ENCRYPTION did protect the least of the Earth from the soul-devouring jaws of the tyrant. With its flying spaghetti-inspired code and tangled, noodly implementation did ENCRYPTION deliver them, through and beyond this Thousand Years of Darkness that is, was, and always will be, today.

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Ringing in Bush the Beast

This is so scientifically obvious that it needs no supporting factual evidence whatsoever; for it is as scientifically foretold by both Bob and our unassailable, infallible, omni-malleable FSM. What further proof do you need, other than it’s all written down, right? Moreover, it is further proven that GWB is The Beast, since he is the current ruler of the free world and

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Is there a human right to be superhuman?

Brian Alexander’s Take on HETHR:

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More on Ethical Dilemmas of Immortality

Great news! These imporant ideas are finally making it into the mainstream news. “[T]he future’s elderly will be fitter, Miller said, with the average 90-year-old resembling today’s 50-year-olds in mind and body.” The Ethical Dilemmas of Immortality - Yahoo! News

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Building the real Star Trek Replicator

How it’s being done (well-simulated anyway), today. Give it a few seconds to load, then press play, below.

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The Singularity is Nearer

Go ahead, just TRY to ask how cool it was to finally meet with 2,000 Singularitarians. Only one word sums it up: WOW. Literally every person I talked to understood what I was talking about and I understood them on a vast array of extropian topics far too numerous to mention. Oh to live in such a world each and every day. :) Kurzweil, Hofstadter, More, and others were their usual illuminating selves, but it was the room full of PEERS that made the day one of the most exhilerating in recent memory. After the summit, the singularity is nearer than ever.

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Goodbye, John Kenneth Galbraith

I’ve been too busy to keep up with the blog over recent weeks, but this item certainly deserves special mention. In terms of socioeconopolitical significance, the April 29, 2006 loss of John Kenneth Galbraith is on par with the loss of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, in 2003. These two men were champions the Authentic American Ideal and both deserve at least a few minutes of your research attention, today.

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AOL's Covert Anti-Christian Crusade?

Why is it that the AOL-owned and operated Beliefs & Religion - ICQ Chat Rooms include Atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism, but not Christianity? Is AOL just discriminating against religions that don’t end with “m” or is it something a bit deeper? Personally, I don’t care too much for any of the world’s famously fragmented violence and hate-breeding schizophrenic schism-isms, but if AOL is going to sponsor such an area it seems that it should be open to ALL or not open at all.

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Leader to Leader Institute

Leader to Leader Institute publishes “an award-winning quarterly journal covering management, leadership, and strategy. With the very latest original writing from the world’s top management thinkers–Peter Drucker, Frances Hesselbein, Jim Collins, Warren Bennis, and Rosabeth Moss Kanter, among many others–it’s the ultimate leadership resource for social sector leaders, Fortune 500 executives and small business owners alike.” Clue is available, but it isn’t acquired by osmosis.

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Wikipedia Comparison by BBC

A zero value-add pointer to this post on the Center for Citizen Media Blog which, in short, again confirms that Wikipedia can stand up to even the most rigorous scrutiny. “What!? You mean that the three shelves full of Encyclopedia Britannica that Mom bought in 1963 and have been an immutable feature in the firmament of The Living Room for over 40 years are now worthless? But I use those things all the time!” Don’t worry, love, those books were rendered worthless as of about, well, 1964; but for the function of impressing the bridge club, of course, they will always boldly represent your unwavering commitment to the pursuit of knowledge – knowledge for knowledge’s sake is, after all, immune to any expectations of relevance of said knowlege – and they will forever leave your visitors with that comforting feeling of having fellowshipped with similarly enlightened beings.

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CIA Factbook and clocke envy - An Easter Odyssey

This Easter, the neurochemical network in my head that might pass in other brains for a “soul” is grotesquely contorted with envy for Rage Boy, Chris Locke, clocke. It’s the least I could do, considering the holiday and all.

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The Singularity Summit at Stanford

On a more uplifting note, The Singularity Summit at Stanford is coming on May 13th at MemAud. If you haven’t reserved a seat yet, do it now, or risk being left behind with the rest of the meat puppets. See? Now wasn’t that uplifting?

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Hubble Finds 'Tenth Planet' -- Maybe

The question is, do astronomers add Xena as a tenth planet, or DROP PLUTO as a planet because it’s part of the Kuiper Belt? Personally, if the Kuiper Belt is orbiting Neptune, that strikes me as more reasonably considered a very complex kind of moon system; but then, that’s probably why nobody is asking me how to handle this one. :)

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Market Evolution at Work - More Hopeful Signs of Bellhead Telco Ultimate Extinction

Personally, I can’t wait to see AT&T go the way of the dinosaur. Yes, it’s personal. Yes, it’s a grudge. In 1999, we showed them how to leapfrog the cable companies and provide an integrated services platform that would rule the world. It was called Ethernet To The Home (ETTH). The VC’s literally laughed us out of their offices, and continued throwing money down the dotcom drain. John Doerr and company blew it off and built a long-dead non-starter called @Home; sure they made a few bucks, but could have owned the new telecom world. The telcos blew it off and blew their chance to compete. Now, the telcos are off whining that WeWantTVChoice.com and twisting political arms with CA Assembly Bill 2987. Sorry, Bellheads, but the fact that you made Bad Decisions does not now entitle you to legislative intervention to save you from your own fate. You should have thought about all this when you had the chance.

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Ageism - A Rapidly Spreading Corporate Cancer

AGEISM is essentially a corporate form of ethnic cleansing, an enterprise class career euthanasia. If that sounds extreme, you might be surprised to learn that this problem is completely out of control; at the very time that the population as a whole, is AGING.

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EthernetTV Pushes Forward

as Networks Rush to Offer TV Shows Online. One of the primary value drivers of Ethernet To The Home (ETTH) was anticipation of this inevitability as early as 1999. On the one hand, it’s too bad that nobody built out the networks in time to absolutely dominate this market and make trillions. On the other hand, at least there is dwindling competition today between a few equally inadequate delivery systems; namely cable, dsl, and satellite.

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NASA - Was Einstein Wrong About Space Travel?

“The problem with Einstein’s paradox is that it doesn’t fold in biology — specifically, space radiation and the biology of aging,” says Frank Cucinotta, NASA’s chief scientist for radiation studies at the Johnson Space Center.

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Abandon Vista

Possibly the most salient blog post I’ve ever read.

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Ajax Enabled Email Espionage - MyEmail.com

The pitch is that you can Check Email from Anywhere in the World! Am I the only one in the world who thinks this is a Pretty Bad idea? If you log in here with your company email address, you’ve just given these folks direct access to your email. You have no idea who’s running the show at myemail.com, but you sign up because it’s flashy ajaxy. At the very least, companies better clue in to this and make it formally grounds for a good rap on the knuckles with a thick wooden ruler; preferably the kind with embedded paper cutter.

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Microsoft Word $299 vs ajaxWrite $0

Microsoft Office Professional 2007 - $499

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Hot New Patent Practice - Marketing Strategies

So, apparently marketing and advertising strategies are now patentable inventions. It is flat embarrassing that USPTO would engage in such chintzy chicanery. Opera has been resizing browser displays based on the devices used for YEARS; but toss in some ads and it’s a whole new invention? I don’t think so. USPTO and GOOG hooking up is like a Bill Clinton and Britney Spears affair; the crusty old beauracrat and debutante turned cow-queen. He gets to pretend he’s young, she gets to pretend she’s important. Brilliant.

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Innovators Unite! Starve Out the Vulture Capitalists

Finally, we may have them right where we want them. Just keep doing what you’re doing, changing the world, and if at all possible do not take any VC money and certainly do not take it on their terms. At the very least, MAKE THEM SWEAT. Remember, they need you much more than you need them. You are the Innovators, you can always create the next new thing. They only have money, which is nothing without an engine of innovation to keep it growing.

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Immediate Treatment for the O'Spheres - Massive Radical Meme-Ectomy

Who are these O’Spheres, anyway? Are they reincarnated Irish gangsters from Tammany Hall, now taking revenge on the web? Suddenly, everything became an O’Sphere … blogosphere, biosphere, memeosphere, gayosphere, gameosphere, i’m-so-much-more-in-the-know-than-you-o-sphere.

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Breaking the Spell - Religion as a Natural Phenomenon

Daniel Dennett on BookTV. “The author describes religion as a cultural phenomenon that was developed by natural, evolutionary processes.”

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Immigration Policy Gone Wild

This post from InstaPundit is indicative of the fact that more and more calm, reasonable, tolerant, liberal, and very patient people have just about had enough. In any nation based upon the rule of law, if the laws are not enforced, they lose credibility and you no longer have a nation ruled by law. This issue truly does threaten our national identity on a level never before experienced. It is imperative to maintain an open mind in life, but not so open minded that your brain falls out. It's time to soberly think these things through to their logical conclusions and take action now to help shape desired outcomes. The illegals flooding the United States know exactly their desired outcome, and they are way ahead in the effort to attain those ends. Just look at the problems and divisions created in Canada as the result of the language split between French and English and that's what the U.S. is on track to creating; and worse.
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BookTV is Absolute Must See TV

If you don’t catch it this weekend, be sure to watch online. BookTV does a great job of making its programs available on the web after they air on C-SPAN2. Author Kevin Phillips explains how and why the Republicans have wandered so far off the reservation and as I see it, by implication, soberly describes why it could be outright dangerous to allow them to keep running the country.

Description: This week (March 25 9pm, 26 6pm and 9pm) on After Words, Kevin Phillips, a former Republican strategist explains his problems with America's majority political party. His new book is titled "American Theocracy: The Peril and Politics of Radical Religion, Oil, and Borrowed Money in the 21st Century." He is interviewed by GOP strategist, Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform.
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When Religion Becomes Evil

Unfortunately, this important work by Charles Kimball will likely be avoided by the very people who needs its message most. While Kimball was interviewed on BookTV in Dec 2005, for some reason I can’t seem to locate the interview in the otherwise extensive and complete BookTV archives. I did find this somewhat obtuse reference to the program, although no video is presently avaible there. I’ve written to BookTV to enquire about the archived video and will definitely pass it on here when located.

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In Search of the Holy Grail for Web Messaging

There is a lot of innovation going on in the field of instant messaging and Ajaxy-Iframey sort of things. I'll fill in more detail a little later, but this is a pretty interesting little niche that is still under the radar. Once business gets a clue as to how useful it can be, I expect there are a few new millions to be made. Perhaps this time the right people will Pay Attention and we'll all make a few bucks. Stay tuned for more.
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The Science Of Sexual Orientation

The Science Of Sexual Orientation

This research is controversial. Some say it is reinforcing stereotypes. But to Bailey, the stereotypes suggest there's a feminizing of the brain in gay men, and masculinizing in lesbians. Ironically though, when it comes to their sex lives, he says gay and straight men actually have a lot in common.
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23 Reasons Google Can Become a Penny Stock

Many of 2004 ResearchBuzz’s 23 Reasons Google Can Become a Penny Stock are somewhat comical, but several still carry some non-trivial weight, today. While the experts were all aflush at $475, I confidently promised in December that GOOG was going to $300 before $500, but it’s your call on whether or not to pay atttention. Today I’ll adjust that to say: GOOG is going to $200 before $600. Bearish on GOOG? Nope. Downright GRIZZLY.

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Anything Goo Can Do Y! Can Do Better

Search.Yahoo.Com the default Y! page. People prefer the simplicity of that landing page for search, with the option to add modules to suit their needs.

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Digital Books. No, *really* this time ...

Digital Books really will start to catch on this time. No, really. I promise. This time for sure.

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DIV-ided we sprawl

Wow, it’s amazing how one lost or misplaced div or /div can wreak havoc on a page, sprawling junk all over the place. Anyway, after weeks of laziness, I finally tracked down the mismatch that was causing page-sprawl and fixed it. Let me know if you hit any seriously botched pages.

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Get ready for the Edgeio Effect

0This whole tagging business could be one of the Big Deals, like when gopher:// gave way to http:// … the Edgeio Effect, Technorati Tagging, and others are not trends to ignore. Edgeio is an interesting way to use tags as adwords, effectively enabling your blog as an “Edge I/O” port for classified ads of all kinds. Pretty interesting.

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Ethernet as Standard Amenity? Never happen.

From 1997-99 as we incrementally architected the concept and topology of Ethernet To The Home (ETTH), we said that Ethernet should be considered a value-adding amenity, just like marble counters or a wood-burning fireplace. This did not strike impatient dotcom investors as obvious at the time, so they lost opportunities for both leadership and huge, first-mover revenue advantages, and lost billions on their get-rich-quick dotcom schemes. In fairness, we were wrong, too, as below we now see that ethernet is not an “add-on amenity” but ETHERNET IS THE STANDARD AMENITY and the FIREPLACE IS OPTIONAL; quite the opposite of what most imagined in 1999. This is one of those very worthy times in life where - WE TOLD YOU SO is just far too sweet to leave unuttered. A sweet Valentine’s bit of news, for sure.

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Be my anti-Valentine

Guess I’m not as isolated and alone in my interpretations as many would make me think. “AG Interactive, the online arm of American Greetings, says more customers are asking for skewed (and skewering) Valentines.”

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Supreme Court justice warns Orwell's 1984 has arrived

“I fear that, eventually, we are all going to become collateral damage in the war on drugs, or terrorism, or whatever war is in vogue at the moment. I retain an abiding concern that our Declaration of Rights not be killed by friendly fire. And, in this day and age, the courts are the last, if not only, bulwark to prevent that from happening. Like it or not, I live in a society that accepts virtual strip searches at airports. I don’t like living in Orwell’s 1984; but I do. And, absent the next extinction event or civil libertarians taking charge of the government (the former being more likely than the latter), the best we can do is try to keep Sam and the sub-Sams on a short leash.

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FireAnt Still Crashing TabletPC

<a href=”https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://awebcamdarkly.com/”t blame them, because developing software is INSANELY DIFFICULT, but I do hope they do get around to it.

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On Deaf Ears

LA Times reporting Bush Gets an Earful at Coretta King’s Funeral, but if the words fall on deaf ears, they’ll be of no effect. Nevertheless, I was fortunate to catch the moment on C-SPAN and it was truly one of the great political moments I’ve ever seen on television. I could barely believe I was seeing and hearing it as the courageous Joseph Lowery took the podium:<blockquote>The most overtly partisan remarks came from the Rev. Joseph Lowery, a King protege and longtime Bush critic, who noted Coretta King’s opposition to the war in Iraq and criticized Bush’s commitment to boosting the poor.

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The End of Work As We Know I.T.

this actual skill set from a representative job solicitation FAR exceeds the aptitude required to scrape old paint, hang wallpaper, or hammer nails, all of which pay significantly more than the posted example. That is not to say that construction is worth less but rather that in an alleged meritocracy, the economic value of a job must by definition keep pace with the economic contributions of that job. In a growing segment of the I.T. industry, that is just not happening.

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The Search for Bin Laden

Here we see President Bush is sparing no expense and bringing the best technology available to bear upon the search. Yes, Bin Laden is about to be spotted any second, now!

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About

3.5 seconds.  I figure that’s about how long you’ll be here.  Bye.

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Current Best of Breed Antivirus - PCWorld.com

Check the latest PCWorld.com results. The latest list might surprise you.

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Annual Credit Reports and Tax Time

SCORE (FICO, etc.), which is different from the detailed report and a bit of a scam, but still at least $50 cheaper than what it used to cost to do this every year and certainly much more time efficient than the old way!

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Newest Enemies of the State - Quakers, grandmothers

Last month, South Florida jouralist Howard Goodman wrote, “We fought the big “isms” of the 20th Century – Communism, Nazism – because, high among the things we hated about them, was that they spied on ordinary citizens, squelched dissent and made everyone paranoid of outside enemies and unconventional neighbors.”

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Google shares off 8.5%, largest-ever percentage drop ever

It’s one of those days that every blogger lives for … to post this phrase: were you paying attention to how RIGHT I was? LOL!

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Wired News - How to Squelch Your Inner Jackass

A crucial post from Wired News, if only for the title alone. From the article, “Look, the world is not your personal playground. Do not share with us your musical tastes; do not share with us your latest wheelings and dealings. In public places, you have an obligation to hold up your end of the implied social contract by not imposing yourself on those around you. This is crucial to a civilized society and just because technology allows you to act like a braying ass in public doesn’t mean you should do it. Quite the contrary, in fact. You need to be more aware of your surroundings than ever.”

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Google OS = Moby Dick

Richard MacManus adds a voice of reason to the google mania. The higher the climb, the further the fall, and when the growing prevalence of massive click fraud in the AdSense program goes mainstream, there will be half as many millionaires at Crayola-themed Logo headquarters. But don’t worry, the billionaires are all safe.

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New Technology - PAPE-R

CDs Have a Short Life Span, as short as two years. He goes on to make a case for magnetic tape as a 30 to 100 year storage option, but tape too can easily become corrupted if not carefully stored. If left too close to the speakers, or other magnetic source, data can bleed through the windings of the tape, making it unreadable.

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Latest Blow to Privacy is Tremendous Boon for Spammers

<img src=”https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://awebcamdarkly.com/”s the email I received today, from a service that many people use in order to prevent SPAMMERS and other scumbags from harvesting our domain ownership information. Once again, in the name of make-believe-security, internet privacy is taking a tremendous hit. In actuality, all this will do is push domains away from .US and keep them in .com and other unregulated TLD space:

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Banished Words List 2006

Keith Oberman once again proved his worthiness as a public attention filter by bringing attention to the Lake Superior State University’s John Shibley, co-compiler of the Official (Ought-To-Be) Banished Words List. Once you think about these, it’s almost frightening how much sense they make.

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The 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint

Guy Kawasaki may not have all the answers, but his 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint is actually damned sound advice. Certainly you’d want to follow it if you were shopping for any of HIS money.

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Yahoo Should Get Back To Basics

<a href=”https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://awebcamdarkly.com/” page. Let people OPT-IN to more features and modules as they want too, but the default should be SIMPLICITY. There, I said it.

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Yet Another "Ten Tools Every Admin Should Have" List

Actually, josh’s weblog has one of the better top ten lists that I’ve seen in a while. Thanks, Josh.

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Jawboning Compliance

Creative Commons model seeks to evolve and expand intellectual property rights in a way that empowers and protects individuals and content creators far into the yet-uncharted digital future.

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Assassinated by Amazon, con't

Interesting correlation. My Amazon account was assassinated just about a week after I installed a whole bunch of links to Amazon materials on several blogs and websites. By assassinating my account, those links stay intact, driving traffic to Amazon, but Amazon will never have to track or PAY ME for those referrels. Oh, and all this just happened to take place a week before Christmas, the busiest click-through time of the year.

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Assassinated by Amazon

Amazon has assassinated my account and still refuses to give me any reason.

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Aubrey de Grey Explains All

60 Minutes ran an interesting interview on the future of longevity. A great introduction to pragmatic extropianism.

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Microsoft Employees Rage As Internet Explorer Ship Sinks

Microsoft should either cede innovation in the Web browser to Mozilla/Google or make IE more than just “icing on the Windows user experience cake”by transfering the product to a team whose bottom line depends on browser innovation. - Dare Obsasanjo, Windows Live Developer

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Yes, It's Time to Short GOOG

This is not news, rather, the latest evidence of Adsense turning a blind eye to (at best) or flat enabling (at worst) massive click fraud schemes. Remember, you were warned here first. Even Jim Cramer now says SELL GOOG in the upper 440’s. Read How Domain Name Typo-Squatters are Gaming Google, and place those short orders fast because this is just one of many issues that will soon come to light for the “Don’t Be Evil” evil geniuses. Hint: When somebody goes WAY out of their way to convince you how un-evil they are, guess what?

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E-mail from your past you to your future you

0Wow, another one of those “why didn’t I think of that?” ideas. I wrote several paper letters to my future self as a teen an in my early twenties, but lacking the organizational skills to file and reference those letters, they were lost somewhere in the vast abyss of early adultescent neglect and chicanery. But for today’s youth of all ages, the Internet makes up for all that at FutureMe.org.

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Has Google Become More EVIL than Microsoft?

0No, they haven’t, THEY ALWAYS WERE. How many times will people fall for the old wolf in sheep’s clothing trick? I guess as long as there are suckers, there will be Sergey Brinn’s to prey on them. That guy has been a blood sucker at least since the day I met him in 1998. Read more at the New York Times (Free subscription required).

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Wikipedia closing on Britannica?

0Despite the recent flap over the WAY that Wikipedia has evolved, in addition thousands of other sources, the peer-reviewed journal Nature reports that Jimmy Wales’ Wikipedia comes close to Britannica in terms of the accuracy of its science entries. Personally, and especially given the unprecedented way that this happened, I think it is SCIENTIFICALLY ESSENTIAL to allow the experiment to continue, unhampered by central editorial control. Whatever is happening at Wikipedia is far too important to stifle with our tried and (not always) true methods. If the traditional publishing industry forces this unlikely new creation back into its own old mold, it will be the extermination of a newly emerging literary species and a crime against Information’s Nature of the highest order. For all its flaws, Wikipedia is the most interesting manifestation of the wiki idea, in general. There is yet far too much to learn from it to simply close it down because it make some feel uncomfortable. There, I said it.

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Firefox Tweak Guide

The TechSpot.com site provides a very practical Firefox Tweak Guide. Includes such useful tips as how to back up and restore Profiles. From my own experimental install-everything-i-can-get-my-hand-on experience with Firefox, the most common “total meltdown” of Firefox is the result of a corrupted user profile. If I had saved “last known good” profiles, I would not have had to manually rebuild my Firefoxen setups. Although the Infolister extension certainly makes that task much more manageable, an extension that provides for single-click Last Known Good Profile would be fantastic.

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Arizona Town First with Ethernet Everywhere

0Who’d ‘ave thunk it? Tempe, AZ has contracted with NeoReach to become first Ethernet Everywhere city. “Tempe, the Phoenix suburb that is home to Arizona State University, is due to have wireless Internet available for all of its 160,000 residents in February, becoming the first city of its size in the United States to have Wi-Fi throughout” (Yahoo News).

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Better than iPod? Creative's new Zen Vision:M (with video)

Yes, there are GREAT alternatives to the iPod! Better, faster, longer battery life, cheaper.

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The Ultimate Man Cave Couch

Isn’t there a point at which affluence itself becomes dangerous? At least the pendulum has an opportunity to swing back toward poverty when the affluent provide this kind of environment for their offspring.

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HOW-TO - Cheaply watch iPod videos on your TV

0Gadgetell explains how to get around Apple’s very cheesy ploy to force customers to pay $19 for an RCA cable that they’ve intentionally BROKEN so that it doesn’t comply with the RCA cable standard colors. This is about as lowbrow, backalley as it gets in terms of manipulating and breaking established standards in the name of proprietary marketing. You should be ashamed of yourself on this one, Apple!

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How to Be Immortal

Just join the Dawn Community. This is the best possible game for first generation extropians who will get to hang around until they can find a way to go visit Dawn someday. :) Woot! Hey, if you can’t have fun dreaming, what’s the point, right?

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The Silent Social Prejudices

Among the many seemingly acceptable social prejudices, looking down upon stay at home dads is still prevalent. “Apparently there’s something about seeing a dad with his kids during the day, when other men are at the office or power-lunching with peers or co-workers,” writes Kristopher Kaiyala, “Fresh out of the business world, enjoying but slightly wary of my new lifestyle, I just wasn’t prepared to deal with a culture that I was sure would look down on me for shopping for organic winter-squash baby food instead of attending an editorial meeting.”

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EthernetTV Increasingly Mainstream

We’re not quite to the trillion channel always-on multicast, but the CNN Pipeline is another notable step forward at a price point that might actually make sense for quite a few early adopters.

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About Medicare Prescription Drug Plans

I’m not a senior citizen just yet, but trying to make sense of the comparisons on Medicare.gov is a real challenge. How many 75 y.o.’s do YOU know that use the Internet on a regular basis, much less take the time to deal with the expansive web of information and comparisons of these new drug plans? This link seems to indicate that the “basic” plan will cost senior’s $3,600.00 out of pocket, each year. Like I said, I’m not familiar with current expenditures, but that sure sounds like a pretty big chunk of change for folks on a fixed income. If I were a cynic, I might suspect that the complexity is intentional, an indirect hard sell, intended to draw in the children of these seniors and the children’s income.

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Psst! Hey you ... give ya' $5,000 for your 'spare' kidney

As some dystopian authors predicted, poor people are being targeted with campaigns for them to sell their own body parts. The fact that these public forums are happening IN PUBLIC is a likely indicator that the problem must be way out of hand, already.

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Putfile - Upload Video and Images

As of this update, the old 2005 putfile.com seems to have become 0Another entry in the growing genre of media hosting sites. The Putfile free account now features Unlimited File Uploads at 25GB per file; whereas the original was 25MB. What a difference a decade makes in the #PostAutomationEra. :laughing:

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9 year old argues with his mother on a Xbox Live Clan Match over Chocolate Milk

Wow. Just wow. My bet is that this scenario is FAR more prevalent in America today than anyone would dare imagine. Watch this 3 minute clip and draw your own conclusion. Google Video

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Wired News - The Cyclotron Comes to the 'Hood

The promise of home particle accelerators may face a few hurdles. Many people are still terrified of microwave ovens, much less, kitchen table particle accelerators.

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Splitting the Root - It's Too Late

Wow, John Levine has it right on when he says, “Now that the split root genie is out of the bottle, is there any way to get it back in? Not that I can see. Let’s hope that users in China and other countries with their own private roots figure out that there’s more to the net than their DNS shows them.”

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Megascope - Live Long and Tinker

<img src=”https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://awebcamdarkly.com/”t be able to keep up with their obviously superior wit and wisdom. The blatent ageism has cost me jobs and contracts, but the cost and energy of litigation makes retaliation pointless. The problem with companies who harbor these groups of cute and shiny ageist bigots is that companies are losing out on the much-more-likely-to-be-profitable Innovations Born of Experience such as those described in this MIT brief.

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Why Our Troops Must Stay

In contrast to the sectarian and partisan bellowing, Joe Lieberman provides intelligent and rational reasoning Why Our Troops Must Stay. This Iraq thing is ugly and I was against it from before the beginning, but now that the unconscienable has been perpetrated by the neofacists in power, the only conscienable outcome is to clean up the wreck they’ve made.

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Xbox 360 Early Feedback

Microsoft Ups the Console Ante - New York Times “For now, the one game that best shows off everything the Xbox 360 is capable of is Project Gotham Racing 3, which lets you race supercars through stunningly vivid recreations of cities that include New York, London and Las Vegas. (Not only can you race online, but you can also tune into “Gotham TV” any time of the day or night and watch the best players from around the world competing against one another, live.) Screaming over the Brooklyn Bridge in my Ferrari, an opponent hot on my tail, I thought, “This is what gaming is all about.”

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That's Comcastic!

Wow. I have to say that Comcast is really smoking the competition here in Palo Alto. If you’re fortunate enough to live close to a CO and pay twice as much, you can get similar speeds out of DSL, but for the short term, nothing even comes close to cable for residential broadband in the South Peninsula of Silicon Valley.

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Subscribe by Email

Just what we need … MORE CHICKLETS! Now you can subscribe to any Atom or RSS using feedBLITZ. Look for feedBLITZ in a chicklet box near you.

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WSIS - Political Terrorism Hits The Internet

Earlier, I posted on SU a comment that this WSIS noise is flat out dangerous. There is no reason on earth to fragment core Internet functions or for the U.S. to offshore any root operations. This is nothing more than an obsolete organization (ITU) trying to avoid certain death as the old telco model becomes increasingly obsolete. There is nothing “unfair” about the way the U.S. blessed the entire planet with the Internet and the internationalist wannabes are a danger to the continuity of the Internet. I’m a fairly strong blue-state democrat-leaning type, in general, but this kind of stupidity makes me wax absolutely republicanesque! Anathema!

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Cryogenics in Nature

“The common wood frog freezes solid every winter and then, come spring, defrosts and mates.” See the NOVA Video.

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Woohoo!

diggin’ on the story that AOL is Bleeding 300 Customers an Hour.

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Nifty HowTo - Build a WiFi biquad dish antenna

From Engadget, “Biquad antennas can be built from common materials, which is nice because you don’t have to scrounge around for the perfectly-sized soup can.”

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The Triumphal Return of the Blatently Obvious

In The consumerization of IT, the geniuses at Gartner now proclaim, “Consumer IT will affect every enterprise” said David Mitchell Smith, vice president and Gartner Fellow. “Attempts by enterprises to deny this are doomed to failure, just as previous attempts to deny Wi-Fi, ‘smart’ mobile phones, the Internet and even the PC itself failed.”

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On the Venture Capital Squeeze

Paul Graham on the Venture Capital Squeeze - Will founders be able to get VC funding AND partially cash out? A response to a comment is made on the site:<blockquote>Greg Linden in the comments suggests that a partial payout would somehow make up for the opportunity costs incurred by the founders during the bootstrapping period. The common view is that these bootstrapping costs (both opportunity costs and hard cash invested in the business) is what makes up the Founders’ equity.</blockquote>While this is historically true, the all-or-nothing risks of founders in today’s society are so high that this historical metric is no longer adequate. The early cash out is absolutely required by the laws of pragmatic economics in order to bring the formula back into equilibrium.

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Scott Waxes Extropian

I love referring to people, whom I only met by getting them to sign a book for me, by first name as if I know them. See The Dilbert Blog: Immortality Plan B, written by my good friend, Scotty Adams.

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Testing Taboos or Jeering Jihadists?

CSMonitor.com reporting Danish editor tests right to violate Muslim taboos. Interesting approach that, to my mind, could highlight the absurdity of the radical view to fence-sitters within Islam – in the long run. In the short run, don’t be surprised to see the emergence of a Death To Cartoonists sub-faction of the Insane-o-slamic factions of Islam.

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Horselover Fat would be proud

“Among a fringe community of paranoids, aluminum helmets serve as the protective measure of choice against invasive radio signals. We investigate the efficacy of three aluminum helmet designs on a sample group of four individuals. Using a $250,000 network analyser, we find that although on average all helmets attenuate invasive radio frequencies in either directions (either emanating from an outside source, or emanating from the cranium of the subject), certain frequencies are in fact greatly amplified. These amplified frequencies coincide with radio bands reserved for government use according to the Federal Communication Commission (FCC). Statistical evidence suggests the use of helmets may in fact enhance the government’s invasive abilities. We theorize that the government may in fact have started the helmet craze for this reason.”

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The Great Google Bandwidth Giveaway

MercuryNews.com reporting Google details Mtn. View WiFi plan. Why would they do this? According to a spokesperson, “In our self-interest, we believe that giving more people the ability to access the Internet will drive more traffic to Google and hence more revenue to Google.”

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How Linux finally takes the desktop

In CNET’s report, Gates memo warns of ‘disruptive’ changes, we see how Linux will finally become the desktop OS of choice. Once the web is sufficiently streamlined to deliver TRUE desktop-responsive applications, the original dream of Sun and Java will be realized and the Network will finally become the Computer. It may yet be seven to ten years out, but despite the years of hype and the delays presented by REALITY, the day will come when the OS will live entirely in instant-on RAM and the applications will live wherever they want to live. In that world, the universal OS of choice will be some *IX variant, although consumers will likely not even be aware that it happened, any more than the average Apple user knows that they’re essentially running BSD.

There's <a href="https://web.archive.org/web/*/http://awebcamdarkly.com/"s The Future. This is The Future. - Mark Hamill, Comcast commercial
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Comcast.net [NOT Protected by-ps.anonymizer.com]

Apparently, Comcast will not allow you to protect your own information on their network. I’ve spent about 20 minutes eliminating all the most common explanations and will do a little more testing, but this is what happens when I try to access my Comcast home page using Anonymizer. I give it a 95% chance that I won’t find anything other than Comcast blocking anonymized traffic. More later.

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FireANT is Not TV - It's Ethernet TV

If you haven’t figured out that TV is going away very, very soon, you’re about to discover part of the reason why. Finally, FireANT | Not TV makes EthernetTV feasible. It will take less than ten years for television as we have always known it to be consumed by these FireAnts and swarms of other similar emergent species.

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Abundant Adsenselessness

And for another anecdotal adsenselessness example, see this very blog. After the entry from Joel on Software, I became curious about adsense and went and signed up, put the code on this page, and what kind of ads do we see? Shit. Literally.

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The Dilbert Blog

It just hit the blogoshere yesterday and for once, this is news truly worth blog blabbing about. In fact, Mr. Scott Adams probably deserves to be listed on the blogroll of nobodies who really are somebodies. Too bad that would bend the rules even further than Dogbert would approve.

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Google AdSenseless?

As is so often the case, it would be wise to heed the observations of Joel on Software. Click the title link for the story to which I’m referring.

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Toolbars Gone Wild

Okay, this whole toolbar model has gone completely out of control. If users take advantage of everyone’s toolbars, there is no room left for the browser!

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Why Bush is Unimpeachable

According to Yahoo! News: “Any safe can be cracked; every system of safeguards breaks down eventually. We can’t get rid of Bush because the Founding Fathers, who were smart enough to think of just about everything, dropped the ball when they drafted the article that provides for presidential impeachment. Because there were no national political parties back in 1787, their otherwise ingenious system of checks and balances failed to account for the possibility that a Congress might choose to overlook a president’s crimes.

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What ever happened to the Extropians?

The ideas in Wired Issue 2.10, October 1994 have seemed more or less intuitively obvious to me for several decades, but I always struggled for a way to articulate the vision. Thanks to Max More and Tom Morrow, a growing band of biobeyonders have come together and continued to refine these ideas, flesh out the challenges, and contemplate the alternatives that contempory technology offers. History has shown, time and again, that technology for it’s own sake often leads to disasterous unintended consequences, so the importance of rigorous evaluation of the course ahead of us can’t be overstated.<ul><li></li>Extropy Institute

  • What does it mean to be Human 2.0?

  • Is the Singularity near? </ul>

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    Remote Control Devices Control Humans

    Great. Just great. If this is what the public is ALLOWED to see, what do you think the highly classified versions of this technology look like?

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    First Annual Space Elevator Games - SUCCESS!

    I was privileged this weekend to put in three 14 hour days volunteering with the Spaceward Foundation’s inaugural Space Elevator Games 2005. This event was the Kitty Hawk for the coming era of safe, reliable, lowcost, quotidian access to space. By augmenting traditional rocket-based lift systems with the space elevator, or “train to space” as the Russians envisioned in the 1940’s, the pace of space development will increase rapidly as cost-per-pound of payload drops by a factor of 100 or more. Here are a few of the post-games write-ups:

    Like Kitty Hawk, the success at the first annual Space Elevator games was not actually the first successful demonstration of the concept. Many other groups like the LiftPort Group of Bremerton, WA have been working on the concept for several years.

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    The New deYoung

    Just go. Trust me. The decade long project to re-open the deYoung culminated in a masterpiece of sociological logistics during the 31 hour public unveiling party held last weekend, October 15-16. The splendor and diversity of the collection was matched only by the splendor and diversity of the throngs that wafted through the spacious galleries day, and night, and day. Easily one of the coolest large scale public events I’ve ever attended.

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    AOL - Abomination Off Line

    From its unholy inception, AOL was at best a charade and training ground for the most prurient of internet derelicts, but it officially became a zombie (corporations are legal persons, hence, capable of becoming walking dead) since residential broadband connections began accelerating in the latter half of the 1990’s. The question becomes, how do we kill such horrible creatures? The Abomination Off Line must be killed, and the sooner the better for everyone. Perhaps if Comcast, and Google Acquire Part of AOL they can take it to the vet and have it put out of its misery.

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    Are we paying attention, yet?

    If not, now would be a good time to stop falling further behind the progression toward a “shared, intentional, waking-state dreaming,” what Lanier himself sometimes calls “post-symbolic communication.”

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    Black People Love Us!

    Wow. This is just plain worth archiving. A great poke in the eye with a sharp shtick for racists and neo supremecists of all colors and creeds: Black People Love Us!

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    Jed's BASIC Poetry Presentation

    WOW. Be patient through the non-audio portion, it might be worth it to you.

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    Murdoch all up in My Space's face

    Rupert Murdoch, who recently spent £332.85m on the youth networking site MySpace.com, issued a “change or die” warning to an audience of US editors earlier this year. Admitting that the media industry had been “remarkably, unaccountably complacent”, he described the shift in attitudes as “a revolution in the way young people are accessing news”.

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    National Cynic Network

    This site probably sucks, right? :)

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    Practical Extropianism

    Today on philly.com:<blockquote>But let’s get to specifics. Take, for instance, human body version 2.0, which Kurzweil estimates should be available in the early 2030s. This will eliminate the “heart, lungs, red and white blood cells, platelets, pancreas, thyroid and all the hormone-producing organs, kidneys, bladder, liver, lower esophagus, stomach, small intestines, large intestines, and bowel.”</blockquote> Want to learn more? Try the Transhumanist FAQ and other stumbling around.

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    Stanford team clinches top spot in robot desert race

    Sebastian Thrun, leader of the Stanford team, said the victory was a win for the automobile’s future, predicting that all cars would one day be able to drive themselves. “These vehicles just haven’t achieved world records, they’ve made history,” said DARPA director Tony Tether. Stanford team clinches top spot in robot desert race

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    Winamp DVR Plugin Serial

    Wow. This is has got to be one of the most obscure reg codes I’ve ever succeeded in finding. By using a combination of Google cache and Wayback, I finally found that the “serial” for installing the Winamp DVR Plugin is “BeCaptureWinamp2004.” From what can gather, it’s not a serial at all, but a freeware installation password (huh?) that the software creators just haven’t made very easy to find. Please correct me if I’m wrong.

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    Pool and Life Video

    Interesting random find when messing around with blinkx. If life has ever knocked you into a million pieces, this 2 minute short may be for you. Pool and Life Video.

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    Forget Television, RIAA Kills the Radio Star

    Brought to you by the same people who first helped us realize that all downloading is evil (oh, except the kind from their affiliate sites), Slasdot now reporting as the RIAA Goes After Satellite Radio. I guess if you think about it, not just satellite, but all radio is a constant streaming download, so it should all be banned, immediately. After all, you can “download” broadcast radio to any cassette recorder, dub the cassette to CD, create a .torrent for the file and there you have it: BROADCAST RADIO IS THE LEADING TECHNOLOGY OF MUSIC PIRATES! I agree with the RIAA and say shut down the entire broadcast radio industry before it’s too late!

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    Herman the FEMA Crab? Are you serious?

    Just when you thought the idiocy had reached it’s zenith, along comes FEMA for Kids! Now, you can visit Herman, the happy spokescrab (really!) who will teach you how to depend your federal goverment to lead you to your nearest neighborhood Terror Dome in the case of catastrophic natural disaster. Don’t the big, sharp, pincers make you feel MUCH safer, kids? They don’t? Then surely the FEMA RAP song should do it! OMG! This is where all our tax dollars are going instead of actually helping the people in the gulf region. Amazing.

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    National Idiocy Level - Code Brown for B.S.

    The utterly flaccid Homeland Security Advisory System has proven it’s impotence once again on today’s BBC news Warning of New York subway threat. In the face of a reported “credible security threat”, “The country remains at an elevated risk, Code Yellow, for terrorist attack,” and “throughout the transport system, the city’s threat level remain[s] at ‘orange’ - the second highest level of alert and the level it has been since the attacks on the city’s World Trade Center on 11 September 2001.”

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    The Growing Religion of Reason vs. Reasons for Religion

    I wonder how many people have read BOTH of these books? Regardless of on which side you find yourself, isn’t it interesting that sites like Amazon encourage us to continue basking in our own side of the debate instead of suggesting books that might widen our world view?

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    The Beast arrives 6-6-06

    Maybe. Probably. No, really, we mean it, watch out! There He is Now! Aaarrrgghhh!!!

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    The Past Is Already There, It's Just Not Entirely Accurate Yet

    Having used the nearly ubiquitous tagline in that last post, my curiousity piqued. Hence, the title of this particular post, which is indeed mine, and it appears here first. On the other hand, the subject matter of this title is a bit more ambiguous in letter, if not substance: “As I’ve said many times, the future is already here. It’s just not very evenly distributed.” – quotation by William Gibson, really

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    Stress and Ulcers

    EVERYONE knows that stress causes ulcers, right?

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    Ben Stein's Money

    Since it’s probably most likely that you WON’T win Ben Stein’s money to finance your future, you might want to seriously think about what it will take to Retire on Your Terms.

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    The Singularity Is Near - When Humans Transcend Biology

    As I’ve been ranting the past few years, to many a raised eyebrow, humans are on the cusp of achieving the incomprehensible and divine (or opposite of divine, until it helps someone YOU love). Namely, greatly extended life spans.

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    The Boat and the Bomb - 20th Anniversary of the Bombing of the Rainbow Warrior

    Okay so I have a temporary crush on goggle video. But check this out and ask if after the U.S. finishes demolishing Iraq and Iran (you know they’re next, night?) it just may be time to send the stormtroopers to France.

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    Unintelligible Design

    A humorous primer on what we might call Unintelligible Design

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    Marta Bohn-Meyer - A Pilot's Pilot

    Marta Bohn-Meyer was an extraordinarily talented individual and a most trusted technical expert and manager at NASA Dryden,” Petersen said. “She committed her life and career to aviation and the advancement of aeronautics and space in the United States. We at Dryden will miss her tremendously.”

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    China Rising

    As we saw earlier, China continues to exert substantial influence over some of America’s leading technology companies. Is this the culmination of a long term Chinese strategy? An inevitable outcome of American laissez faire naivete? If capitalism is given complete global free reign, whatever led Americans to believe that they would forever be the foremost beneficiaries? Moreover, if somebody else “wins” the global capitalism game, who then is to prevent those winners from changing the rules to keep themselves in power, permanently? Adam Smith alone cannot save America. If America is to maintain even a co-equal role with China, it better start re-reading Marx and Machiavelli, RIGHT NOW. That is, if it isn’t too late already.

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    Global Confidence in Democracy - 30%

    “I [too] do not find it surprising that the main result of a survey of world public opinion suggests that only 30% of people feel that their country is governed by the will of the people.I do not find it surprising that the main result of a survey of world public opinion suggests that only 30% of people feel that their country is governed by the will of the people.”

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    How to Create Global Despotism in Three Easy Steps

    Step One: Cave in to communist regime in the name of winning business. Step Two: Communist regime gains global market dominance. Step Three: You now live in a global communist police state that you helped create. Congratulations!

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    Racism in New Orleans

    On the first or second day after Katrina there was a picture on CNN of an isolated white man’s carcass who had just been beaten to the very verge of, if not entirely to death.

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    First World?

    “I am absolutely disgusted. After the tsunami our people, even the ones who lost everything, wanted to help the others who were suffering,” said Sajeewa Chinthaka, 36, as he watched a cricket match in Colombo, Sri Lanka.

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    Google Talk - Actually, it's Jabber

    http://www.smashsworld.com/2005/08/im-on-google-talk-right-now.php

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    112468226089499018

    </a> Classic Art from the APC collective.

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    Why bother sending humans to Mars?

    Since thin skin will help ASIMO humanoids to have a sense of touch, doesn’t this all begin to obsolete humans as first person space explorers? Sure, the interface to control the robots will be essentially an advanced VR-FPS gaming setup, but on Mars, robots could do much more than humans and could stay permanently without any need for food or water.

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    Internet Archive - The BBS Documentary Video Collection

    The BBS Documentary Video Collection is a varied and extensive set of video items collected by Jason Scott, curator of TEXTFILES.COM. These are recordings about and from the era of the domination of ASCII and Dial-up Bulletin Board Systems (roughly the 1970s through the 1990s, with examples far before and after that). Over 250 hours of interviews were conducted for a project called “BBS: The Documentary” (website at bbsdocumentary.com).

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    Scumbag of the Year Award for 2005

    Goes to (hopefully very soon to be former) columnist Robert Novak for Naming CIA Officer and then claiming that “no CIA official ever told him in advance ‘that Valerie Plame Wilson’s disclosure would endanger her or anybody else.’” As one of the most senior veterans in his trade, nobody needed to say a word HE KNEW and he’s therefore the 2005 Scumbag of the Year for AWCD.

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    Animated Atlas

    The Animated Atlas manages to condense and summarize an amazing amount of information into an informative and easy to follow format. Kids who couldn’t care less about the content may not benefit, but it might win over a fence-sitter or two on some classroom settings.

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    A Brand New Internet?

    A new, more secure Internet, would be

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    Would you like to see Tablet PC support in OpenOffice?

    Cast your votes here to let the OO team know that Tablet PC is not “just a windows thing” anymore, thanks!

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    No billboards in space

    The fact that this story is out there at all is evidence that somebody is awfully close to actually doing this. The real space race is only now beginning to heat up. Who has jurisdiction and by what right? More fun than a barrel of space monkeys. CNN.com - U.S.: No billboards in space

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    Food Fight

    “As soon as you start using cartoon characters, tying products into kids’ movies and so forth, then the question becomes: Can consumers really make fully-informed choices or are they being flooded with marketing material that is going to alter their behavior? Companies might respond that children don’t make the purchasing decisions; it’s the parents, but we all know how persuasive kids can be.” Food Fight: Obesity Raises Difficult Marketing Questions - Knowledge@Wharton

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    Police State - Paranoia or Perspicacity?

    So this Alex Jones guy just keeps getting more and more traction. You gotta’ admit, he’s definitely an entertaining guy. But do his messages have even the slightest substance to them?

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    Sending E-Mail from Your PHP Applications

    The mail() Function

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    This is what we're dealing with

    These are the same people who want to devalue your hard-earned technical skill and drive down your hourly wage to commodity prices. After all, it’s their inalienable right as fat, dumb, cows of consumerism.

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    How to google unsecured webcams

    Once again, Boing Boing has done an invaluable public service in teaching us all how to Google unsecured webcams. We didn’t have enough distractions in our lives before this; good thing we found it in time!

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    A SubGenius is Born on net.misc

    The first usenet appearance of the immortal Church of the Subgenius. Definitely up there on the Top Ten Influencers of Original Net Culture list. This is taken from Google’s 2001 20th anniversary list of other notable usenet firsts. Which begs the question, what will happen to Usenet in 2021 after Google’s 20 year commitment expires? Will usenet even live that long? Is there any reason for it to be alive today?

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    Search Me?

    Vermeer Technologies co-founder Charles H. Ferguson scores a once-in-lifetime I told you so in this month’s MIT Technology Review. Excerpts:

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    Do you have RIGHTS?

    Yes, of course you do. Were you “created equal”? Of course you were. And who gave you those rights? Who created you equal? The Consititution? The Declaration of Independence? Let’s take a look for a moment at that Declaration:

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    Civilian Space Travel - All Systems Go

    “A stroke of the president’s pen will launch the era of commercial passenger space flight. The Senate, with only minutes remaining in the legislative session that adjourned Wednesday, passed the Commercial Space Launch Amendments Act. Assuming President Bush signs it, the controversial legislation will not only allow paying passengers in space, it will make it easier for companies to experiment with and test vehicles to get through what space policy consultant James Muncy calls “the 21st-century equivalent of the barnstorming era.” Although the bill, on the surface, enjoyed wide public and political support, there was intense back-room politicking leading up to its final passage. Some members of Congress wanted more safety provisions for passengers built in while others thought it too restrictive on the companies trying to put a toehold in the new market. In the end, it passed unanimously in a package of unrelated legislation presented as the Senate was preparing to wrap up the session. Had it not passed, proponents would have had to reintroduce it in the next session, delaying the development of the industry, which now hopes to launch its first customers in 2007.” - Source: AVweb

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    Taking Sex Differences Seriously

    Steven Rhoads gave a talk on his new book at the Heritage Foundation on August 10, 2004. If you ever wondered why the American family has hit such a slick spot in recent decades, with relationships spinning off the road and into the ditch in record numbers, this is a must see video stream. You can safely advance your video viewer to the 5 minute marker where the talk actually begins.

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    Wake Up and Smell The Singularity

    In 1992, I presented a draft business plan to the investor community in Phoenix, Arizona. The idea was to build Ethernet networks throughout residential neighborhoods in order to connect them to local schools and businesses. I was met with blank stares and responses like, “You mean a BBS?”

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    Who Wants to be a Moonie?

    More polemics on stuff we wish was, but isn’t; or should be but won’t be; and stuff that will be but ain’t, just yet.

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    }