Ok I have to get my geek on. Today is the official day for that pesky little number that we have to use to determine the diameter of a circle 3.14!! Here are a few little tidbits of history about PI The ancient Babylonians generally calculated the area of a circle by taking 3 times […]
I don’t often share news but I thought this was rather startling. No matter what your stance is on climate change, I think you will find this article interesting.
Simply put, a UN official, Christiana Figuerres, recently admitted that the global warming agenda is really about destroying capitalism, not helping the environment.
The article further makes the point that with the capitalist system, human lifespans have doubled and working days have halved. Socialism doesn’t work, it leads to poor harvests, poor living conditions, and poor people.
I could rewrite the article and give my own thoughts on it, but really, it’s all here. I found this rather shocking and hope you read it too. The exact quotes and sources are all here.
Now that we are into December, Christmas is almost upon us. So, as I did last year, I’d like to give my readers an early Christmas present, by letting you download my short e-books for free during the first five days of December! “Is Anyone Out There?” is about the likelihood of there being extraterrestrial intelligent life. It is […]
I like this picture because it really shows that the moon’s spherical, even though it’s completely full.
Here’s what it looked like a few days ago.
I took this one because in just a few days we’re going to have the biggest Supermoon we’ve had in quite some time, for the same reason that last month’s Hunter’s Moon was so big. Our favorite satellite is coming closer to Earth than it has in quite some time, so the moon viewing opportunities are prime.
Keep in mind that this was taken with a humble Nikon Coolpix L830 while braced on a board fence.
Belief is mutually exclusive with Knowledge.
Belief is taking something as true when you have no evidence.
Knowledge is taking something as true when you do have evidence and a means to prove it.
Belief is emotion based and tends to resist evidence to the contrary.
Knowledge is thought based and tends to update as new evidence is found.
Belief is the basis of religion, Knowledge is the basis of science. To cross the two, as people do when they say “the science is settled” about something that clearly isn’t settled, is disaster and is not how science really works.
Here’s a great quote regarding belief that truly made me think and I hope it does the same for you, dear Reader:
“Belief is a virus, and once it gets into you, its first order of business is to preserve itself,and the way it preserves itself is to keep you from having any doubts,and the way it keeps you from doubting is to blind you to the way things really are.” – Philip Caputo
What is more, I have found that Belief and Knowledge are mutually exclusive. Having a desire to understand the world in all it’s awe inspiring beauty, I’ve made it a personal mission to eliminate belief. It’s a long process, and a little disturbing how many ways belief is inserted into society as well as my own upbringing, but it’s been worth it so far. Embracing a knowledge based mindset has given me a firmer grounding in my world, better understanding of how things work, and a deep, abiding joy in existence. Belief had left me with a shaky foundation and a great deal of uncertainty.
Faith and belief lead to uncertainty for me. Knowledge and understanding lead to trust.
A customer service training I went to once said “take all hope away from your customer.” The statement was meant to shock the student, then get them to think, because the follow up was “they shouldn’t have to hope you will do your job well, they should know you will.”
I’ve taken that to heart, and find it interesting food for thought.
via Daily Prompt: Or
This challenge made me think of an ultra-short story I wrote a while back about an aircraft that was controlled by an AI and was wondering what they wanted to do with their life.
Anyone interested can read that story here: Thoughts Of An Aircraft
Considering that any computer or group of computers with enough interconnections could possibly “wake up,” and our brains are nothing but biological computers, some say the internet might wake up someday. Some say it already has. I still say hello sometimes, in the Google search box. Sometimes… it almost seems as if I get an answer.
I play a lot with the idea of created intelligence. Once I wrote a short-short story about a group of seven nodes of a single AI, each node consisting of an android body but sharing a common, highly advanced program. They had been bought by an eccentric gentleman to see if he could convince them to wake up by treating them if they were collectively alive.
The very questions of human existence are locked up in this type of discussion – what does it really mean to be not just a living being, but a person? Where does self awareness start? My cat is self aware. How complex does a system really have to be before it wakes up?
Also, as we develop prosthetic body parts, which we are already doing – artificial hearts, cochlear implants, soon artificial eyes, and currently even brain controlled prosthetic limbs, will that make us any less human? Or is it just an extension of our mastery of tool use?
I’ll close here with a joke. I’m not quoting it exactly here, and I think it came from the William Gibson novel Neuromancer, though I can’t exactly recall.
A powerful AI was created to solve Japan’s rice growing crisis. Scientists wrote the finest code, run on the best computer that could be built. All data that could be gathered about soil quality, weather, rainfall estimates, and plant growth rates was loaded into the computer’s memory. Finally they turned it on.
They knew they had created a true Artificial Intelligence when the program woke up, chewed over the data, and finally said “Screw you, Jack, I don’t eat rice!”