I haven’t posted in a while, but this is blog-worthy material. I’ve recently become familiar with the thinking of University of Maryland physicist, James Gates Jr. Dr. Gates is working on a branch of physics called supersymmetry. In the process of his work he’s discovered the presence of what appear to resemble a form of computer code, called error correcting codes, embedded within, or resulting from, the equations of supersymmetry that describe fundamental particles.… Read More “Is the Universe a Computer? New Evidence Emerges.”
I’ve posted a new article in my public twine about how we are moving from the World Wide Web to the Web Wide World. It’s about how the Web is spreading into the physical world, and what this means.
A very cool experiment in virtual reality has shown it is possible to trick the mind into identifying with a virtual body:
Through these goggles, the volunteers could see a camera
view of their own back – a three-dimensional "virtual own body" that
appeared to be standing in front of them.
… Read More “Virtual Out of Body Experiences”
If you are interested on what computer user-interfaces are going to feel like in the future — you must see this video of a demo of a new multi-touch computer monitor. This is amazing technology — and the various demos themselves are interactive artworks in their own right.… Read More “Wow! Watch this Multi-Touch UI Demo Video”
Check out this very impressive user-interface prototype for a desktop that works more like a real desk — a messy desk in fact. Very delightful design work that makes want to use it now!
Read this fun article that lists and defines some of the key concepts that every post-singularity transhumanist meta-intellectual should know! (via Kurzweil)
This critical article by an ex-World of Warcraft player is a real sign of the times — the kind of article that people will read in a few hundred years as a window into our particular moment in history. The author reached the highest levels of the game and found that it was ruining his life as well as the lives of other players.… Read More “Sign of the Times – View from the Top of World of Warcraft”
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).”
(This summary includes my argument, a method for judging the outcomeof this bet and some other thoughts on how to measure awareness…)
A.… Read More “Why Machines Will Never be Conscious”
This is an extremely cool video of a beautifully designed interface that connects physical objects and digital objects in a new way. You can drag things off of your computer, right onto your table, and then from there connect them to physical objects, like a book, which can then be moved around causing the digital objects they are linked with to also move.… Read More “Extremely Cool — Sony Invention Links Digital and Physical World”
Steven Spielberg has applied for a patent on a new cinema technology which he claims will bring viewer right inside the movie.
"But in the future, you will physically be inside the experience, which will surround you top, bottom, on all sides.
… Read More “Spielberg Invents New Movie Technology”
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.… Read More “A Possible Future of Physics”
Japanese researchers have developed a technology for the remote control of humans. Hmm… sounds kind of creepy. The system uses weak electrical stimulation of the vestibular system, causing the subject to shift balance and change direction. This technology can also be used to create vestibular illusions — for example, it can be used to make a person playing a computer game think they are experiencing motion.… Read More “Remote Control Humans”
Fascinating article about research which has successfully extracted video from monitoring cat neurons. They have actually reconstructed what the cat actually saw from its neural signals. This opens the door to recording our day-to-day perceptions (lifelogs) and perhaps even to recording our dreams.… Read More “Extracting Video from Cat Brains”
In an amazing new research finding, it turns out that a substantial amount of the so-called "junk DNA" in humans and other vertebrates is the same and has remained unchanged for 600 to 700 million years. Not only that but it turns out that at least some of the base pairs in this set have been found to regulate genes in other parts of the genome.… Read More “New Discovery – All Vertebrates Share Certain "Junk DNA" Segments”
The Fembots are coming… see the photo
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.… Read More “Simulated Universes and the Nature of Consciousness”
A number of readers sent me links this week about the new Sony patent for ultrasonic neural stimulation. It is definitely interesting and could represent a useful new approach to non-invasive brainstate manipulation. However, it is by no means anywhere near being useful for entertainment, virtual reality, or mind control.… Read More “About Sony's Brain Stimulation Patent”
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 civilizations.… Read More “Creator of Sim City Previews Amazing New Game”
Years ago I read about Persinger’s work on the induction of unusual states of consciousness using magnetic stimulation of the temporal lobe and always wanted to try it — unfortunately the only way to do that was to go to his lab (assuming you could get invited).… Read More “Brain Stimulation Helmet for your PC”
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 project?”… Read More “If the Universe is a Simulation, then What?”
This is an idea for a new way to navigate interactively through large audio sets, such as collections of thousands of music tracks, and to automatically or interactively learn and evolve interesting trajectories through such spaces.
Check out Facetop, a really smart way to do collaboration and videoconferencing at the same time. See the picture in the link above. (from Josh
Here is a book that readers who are interested in multi-agent systems will find useful. The author, Andrew Ilachinski is also a reader of this blog, by the way — it’s called “Artificial War: Multiagent-Based Simulation of Combat” and provides an examination of the thesis that what happens on a battlefield (though the arena can be much more general of course) is a self-organized emergent phenomenon that can be understood, at least in part, by examining relatively “simple” underlying rules.… Read More “Artificial War”
This is a funny article about a virtual reality church on the Internet in which worshipers can participate as avatars in a simulated church service. Unfortunately, some people have been logging in as …. you guessed it… Satan!
Wow. This is a very cool new project — controlling video games with a braincap.