October 27th, 2009
In typical Web-industry style we’re all focused minutely on the leading trend-of-the-year, the real-time Web. But in this obsession we have become a bit myopic. The real-time Web, or what some of us call “The Stream,” is not an end in itself, it’s a means to an end. So what will it enable, where is [...]
February 13th, 2009
If you are interested in collective intelligence, consciousness, the global brain and the evolution of artificial intelligence and superhuman intelligence, you may want to see my talk at the 2008 Singularity Summit. The videos from the Summit have just come online. (Many thanks to Hrafn Thorisson who worked with me as my research assistant for [...]
December 8th, 2008
In this interview with Fast Company, I discuss my concept of "connective intelligence." Intelligence is really in the connections between things, not the things themselves. Twine facilitates smarter connections between content, and between people. This facilitates the emergence of higher levels of collective intelligence.
October 2nd, 2008
I’ve posted a link to a video of my best talk — given at the GRID ’08 Conference in Stockholm this summer. It’s about the growth of collective intelligence and the Semantic Web, and the future and role the media. Read more and get the video here. Enjoy!
March 3rd, 2008
I’m here at the BlogTalk conference in Cork, Ireland with a range of bloggers and technologists discussing the emerging social Web. Including myself, Ian Davis and Paul Miller from Talis, there are also a bunch of other Semantic Web folks including Dan Brickley, and a group from DERI Galway. Over dinner a few of us [...]
July 3rd, 2007
Web 3.0 — aka The Semantic Web — is about enriching the connections of the Web. By enriching the connections within the Web, the entire Web may become smarter. I believe that collective intelligence primarily comes from connections — this is certainly the case in the brain where the number of connections between neurons far [...]
February 20th, 2007
Google’s Larry Page recently gave a talk to the AAAS about how Google is looking towards a future in which they hope to implement AI on a massive scale. Larry’s idea is that intelligence is a function of massive computation, not of “fancy whiteboard algorithms.” In other words, in his conception the brain doesn’t do [...]
January 12th, 2007
Read this fun article that lists and defines some of the key concepts that every post-singularity transhumanist meta-intellectual should know! (via Kurzweil)
November 6th, 2006
NOTES Master Copy can be found at this URL or http://tinyurl.com/yynb93 Last Update: Tuesday, November 7, 2006, 10:17AM PST License — This article is distributed under the Creative Commons Deed. If you would like to distribute a version of thisarticle, please link back to http://www.mindingtheplanet.net from yourversion, thanks. Printable version — Click here to download [...]
October 24th, 2006
This article by Germany’s best-known economics writer provides a fast and high-level overview of how the American empire is losing (has lost?) its economic power. While the dollar is still the world’s currency of choice, the USA no longer controls it. Furthermore, with increasing trade deficits, the outsourcing of labor, and spiraling debt, the US [...]
October 17th, 2006
This is a surprisingly good article on the nature of consciousness — providing a survey of the current state-of-the-art in cognitive science research. It covers the question from a number of perspectives and interviews many of the leading current researchers.
October 17th, 2006
Below is the text of my bet on Long Bets. Go there to vote. “By 2050 no synthetic computer nor machine intelligence will have become truly self-aware (ie. will become conscious).” Spivack’s Argument: (This summary includes my argument, a method for judging the outcomeof this bet and some other thoughts on how to measure awareness…) [...]
October 16th, 2006
For an interesting read — download this wonderful presentation on zooming out in time as a way to predict the future. It’s from a talk given at the Long Now Foundation. Nice visual slides illustrate how the world changes over vast timescales.
June 9th, 2006
A new mathematical technique provides a dramatically better way to analyze data, such as audio data, radar, sonar, or any other form of time-frequency data. Humans have 200 million light receptors in their eyes, 10 to 20 million receptors devoted to smell, but only 8,000 dedicated to sound. Yet despite this miniscule number, the auditory [...]
April 2nd, 2006
My father, Mayer Spivack, has written an interesting piece on managing thinking styles in organizations. He points out the difference between the thinking styles in early and later stage companies, and the challenge of managing and integrating these two aspects of the organization’s cognitive process. I think that the syncretic-associative mode (curious, inventive, exploratory, enthusiastic, [...]
March 26th, 2006
Today I read an interesting article in the New York Times about a company called Rite-Solutions which is using a home-grown stock market for ideas to catalyze bottom-up innovation across all levels of personnel in their organization. This is a way to very effectively harness and focus the collective creativity and energy in an organization [...]
January 26th, 2006
Where’s George, an internet game in which people track the spread of dollar bills as they move around, has yielded an unexpected breakthrough in the science of predicting the spread of epidemics.
January 24th, 2006
The theory of quantum evolution is a radical new take on how mutations in DNA occur. Basically the theory postulates that DNA molecules are in fact macroscopic quantum objects that undergo quantum interference. It is spearheaded by Johnjoe McFadden, a professor in the UK and makes for an interesting read. Here is a brief overview [...]
January 24th, 2006
Introduction: This article proposes the creation of a new open, nonprofit service on the Web that will provide something akin to “collective self-awareness” back to the Web. This service is like a “Google Zeitgeist” on steroids, but with a lot more real-time, interactive, participatory data, technology and features init. The goal is to measure and [...]
January 4th, 2006
The Edge has published mini-essays by 119 "big thinkers" on their "most dangerous ideas" — fun reading. The history of science is replete with discoveries that were considered socially, morally, or emotionally dangerous in their time; the Copernican and Darwinian revolutions are the most obvious. What is your dangerous idea? An idea you think about [...]
November 1st, 2005
George Dyson wrote a nice piece on his impressions from a visit to Google, and some speculations about the future of AI on the Net.
September 27th, 2005
Today I read this nice article which provides a short consumer-friendly overview of the history of the Digital Physics paradigm. Digital Physics is not mainstream physics — but it is growing and someday could become huge. It brings together computer scientists and physicists in an interdisciplinary approach to physics. While many advocates simply take the [...]
June 4th, 2005
Researchers in Europe have completed the first phase of what may be the largest computational physics experiment in history: They built and ran a simulated universe through 14 billion years of development. The experiment used up 25 million megabytes of memory, and the biggest supercomputer in Europe for a month. The result was a “Cube [...]
May 10th, 2005
Significant new research findings indicate that a new ice age may be starting sooner than anyone expected… CLIMATE change researchers have detected the first signs of a slowdown in the Gulf Stream — the mighty ocean current that keeps Britain and Europe from freezing. They have found that one of the “engines” driving the Gulf [...]
April 8th, 2005
Here is an interesting article about an analysis of SMS messaging versus e-mail messaging on mobile networks. The conclusion is that e-mail messaging is more efficient for mobile consumers because email networks are scale-free networks. The article predicts that services based on scale-free topologies will ultimately win out over less optimal alternatives. Thanks to Murli.
March 12th, 2005
Many years ago I spoke with Will Wright — one of the most interesting visionaries I’ve met (and who happens to be the creator of Sim City) about his dream of a universe game — one in which the player could evolve life from the simple cellular level all the way up through galactic scale [...]
March 11th, 2005
After 30 years of research, a very interesting new theory of cognition has been announced. The theory posits that all human cognition and behavior is based on just one simple, non-algorithmic procedure that has been named confabulation. If the theory is correct it could offer a radical new approach to artificial intelligence, knowledge discovery, and [...]
December 1st, 2004
In an interesting convergence of scientific disciplines, physicists in Germany have turned their attention to linguistics, and have come up with a statistical model that predicts the distribution and mutation of languages over time.
November 22nd, 2004
This interesting new brain study reveals processing differences between Semantic Memory and Episodic Memory in human brains. Nature performs these functions differently, and there is probably a good reason why that is so. On the Web we don’t really have an equivalent of Episodic Memory or Semantic Memory yet… but we’re working on it!
November 15th, 2004
Here’s an interesting speculation. Assume for the moment that our universe is in fact a simulation running on a vast computing system created a race of beings that is far more advanced than we can presently imagine. The next logical question would be, “Why would an advanced civilization want or need to undertake such a [...]