Arctic Sea Ice : Forum

AGW in general => Science => Topic started by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 12:08:32 AM

Title: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 12:08:32 AM
To find other discussions on key elements of adapting to the rapidly changing Anthropocene, see also the following linked threads:

- Scientifically modelling (approximating) the anthropogenic – Earth Systems interactions discussed here: (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php?topic=1306.msg55632#msg55632 (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php?topic=1306.msg55632#msg55632))
- Understanding/defining the nature of the Early Anthropocene as discussed here (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,852.0.html (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,852.0.html)), and
- Understanding the associated Existential Risks of the Anthropocene are discussed here (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1307.0.html (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1307.0.html)).

With such background discussions in mind, this thread focuses on how our socio-economic system may likely evolve/change to adapt to the Anthropocene (including but not limited to climate change) through about 2100 .  In this regards I plan to discuss:
(1) representative background on how AI and cyborg technology may likely interact with the modern human mind-body dynamic to change in new ways; and
(2) representative examples of anthropological findings illustrate how evolution has shaped the mind-body dynamic in modern humans;
(3) representative background on how morality and "mindfulness" techniques are already impacting modern business practices, information theory, psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being can foster a thriving, resilient, and compassionate global socio-economic system.

As I believe that the Anthropocene is best characterized by the Information Age that our socio-economic system has moving into, I will begin this thread with an initial linked article about how the future rich (this century or two) may use AI & cyborg technology to assume behavior that exceed current social expectations:

http://rt.com/uk/263133-rich-human-god-cyborgs/ (http://rt.com/uk/263133-rich-human-god-cyborgs/)
Extract: "Rich people living 200 years from now are likely to become “god-like” immortal cyborgs, while the poor will die out, an historian has claimed.
Yuval Noah Harari, a professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, said the merger of humans and machines would be the greatest evolution since the appearance of life.
He added the greatest minds in computer engineering already believe death is a mere technological problem with a solution.
Harari said advances in technology will enable humans to become god-like creatures, as different from today’s humans as chimpanzees are from us.

During his talk, Harari said humans are programmed to be dissatisfied in life. Even when humans gain pleasure and achievements, they want more.
“I think it is likely in the next 200 years or so Homo sapiens will upgrade themselves into some idea of a divine being, either through biological manipulation or genetic engineering of by the creation of cyborgs, part organic part non-organic,” he told the audience.
“It will be the greatest evolution in biology since the appearance of life. Nothing really has changed in four billion years biologically speaking. But we will be as different from today’s humans as chimps are now from us.”
However, Harari said only the wealthiest would benefit from ‘cyborg’ technology, making the gap between rich and poor in society even wider.
In the future the rich may be immortal while the poor would die out, he said.
Harari’s book argues that humans are successful as a species because of their imagination and ability to create fictions.
He cites religion, money and the concept of human rights as “fictions” which hold society together but have no basis in nature.
Speaking at Hay, he said: “God is extremely important because without religious myth you can’t create society. Religion is the most important invention of humans. As long as humans believed they relied more and more on these gods they were controllable.
“But what we see in the last few centuries is humans becoming more powerful and they no longer need the crutches of the gods. Now we are saying we do not need God, just technology.
“The most interesting place in the world from a religious perspective is not the Middle East, it’s Silicon Valley where they are developing a techno-religion. They believe even death is just a technological problem to be solved,” he added. "

Starting this thread with such a linked article may seem like an artificial "deus ex machine" device; however, I sincerely believe that developments in information theory will have a major impact on our coming socio-economic system for good (discussed in this thread) and bad (see the Anthropogenic Existential Risk thread here: http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1307.0.html (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1307.0.html) )

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deus_ex_machina (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deus_ex_machina)
Extract: "Deus ex machina: meaning "god from the machine".  The term has evolved to mean a plot device whereby a seemingly unsolvable problem is suddenly and abruptly resolved by the contrived and unexpected intervention of some new event, character, ability or object."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 09:56:56 AM
"A central aspect of consciousness is the ability to look ahead, the capability we call "foresight."  It is the ability to plan, and in social terms to outline a scenario of what is likely going to happen, or what might happen, in social interactions that have not yet taken place . . . It is a system whereby we improve our chances of doing those things that will represent our own best interests . . . I suggest that "free will" is our apparent ability to choose and act upon whichever of those seem most useful or appropriate, and our insistence upon the idea that such choices are our own."  Quote by Richard D. Alexander

In my opinion, Siddhartha Gautama (Sanskrit; or in Pali: Siddhattha Gotama) taught that "free will" allows individuals to choose from the cacophony of modelled options that the mind creates; which in un-enlightened individuals generates the illusion that humans are serving their own best interests by feeding-back into this mental construct.  Thus in my opinion, the first noble truth is that feeding self-interest back into this mental construct creates suffering when the feedback causes the mental construct to diverge from reality; however with proper insight "free will" can allow an individual to choose from the cacophony of modelled options actions that will improve the reality of the "common good".

In order to cope with the complexity and chaos of reality, the human mind evolved a high-degree of redundancy within a pattern recognizing hierarchical mental structure that uses inductive reasoning looking both forward and backward through the hierarchy to produce relatively linear projections that are frequently accepted by the mind as deductive proof of the ego's power & foresight.  In this sense the mind does not hesitate to confabulate any a posteriori that makes sense to our a priori mental construct thus creating an illusion of self-interest that is "seeming parted, but a union in partition" (in this same sense, Gautama teaching that there is no "self" can be taken to indicate that the illusion of self is really a mindless aggregation of the ever changing cacophony of mental model options in the same way that an orchestra is singular).
Inductive reasoning, also known as induction, is a kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions (a priori) that are abstractions of observations of individual instances. Inductive reasoning contrasts with deductive reasoning in that a general conclusion is arrived at by specific examples.  Inductive reasoning allows for the possibility that the conclusion be false, even where all of the premises are true.

Arthur Schopenhauser said: "… everyone believes himself a priori to be perfectly free, even in his individual actions, and thinks that at every moment he can commence another manner of life . . . But a posteriori, through experience, he finds to his astonishment that he is not free, but subjected to necessity, that in spite of all his resolutions and reflections he does not change his conduct and that from the from the beginning of his life to the end of it, he must carry out the very character which he himself condemns."

As I have previously posted: C. D. Broad is often misquoted as saying: "induction is the glory of science and the scandal of philosophy"; however, the actual quote was: "May we venture to hope that when Bacon's next centenary is celebrated the great work which he set going will be completed; and that Inductive Reasoning, which has long been the glory of Science, will have ceased to be the scandal of Philosophy? "  Broad, C.D. (1926), "The philosophy of Francis Bacon: An address delivered at Cambridge on the occasion of the Bacon tercentenary, 5 October, 1926", Cambridge: University Press, p. 67.

In this sense modern decision makers in the international socioeconomic system choose from a cacophony of information presented by the market, society, advisors and one's own mental constructs to "… act upon whichever of those most useful or appropriate, and our insistence upon the idea that such choices are our own. (partial quote per Richard D. Alexander )" 

Traditionally, top modern decision makers make their socio-economic choices "on/at the margin" where uncertainty is maximized; which, generally results in a near balance between "Cad-like" and "Dad-like" behavior (i.e. ".. the scandal of Philosophy), that oscillates with the ever changing circumstances reminiscent of a Tao Yin-Yang symbol of undifferentiated unity.  In a sustainable socio-economic system (such as existed prior to the beginning of the Holocene [which I propose be re-named the Anthropocene, see the "Early Anthropocene" thread], note that the megafauna extinction that I believe triggered the beginning of the Anthropocene/Holocene added pressure on mankind to enter the Agricultural Age that eventually [by between 5000 to 3000 years before present] allowed for sufficient wealth accumulation to facilitate organized exploitation of other people, and of nature, in a non-sustainable fashion), individuals consider the greater good of the system; however, today Homo Economicus is in a crisis of scandalous "Cad-like" self-serving (whether with regard to externalizing GHG, pollution, effort/work, responsibility, risk, etc.) that requires our current socio-economic system to either adapt to the currently changing conditions or potentially cease to exist (ala existential risk).

For a definition of Homo Economicus see:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_economicus

In my next post I plan to consider our increasingly Homo Economicus based socio-economic system as a kind of fragile Humpty Dumpty stilling on a wall (which is also a scientific analogy for information entropy), and I further consider how Information Theory (including Artificial Intelligence) can be used to minimize the fragility (and to decrease the entropy) of our current socio-economic system, by building on the already highly evolve information processing structure of the human mind.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 10:10:26 AM
"Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses and all the king's men
Couldn't put Humpty together again."

For perspective I compare our modern global socio-economic system to Humpty Dumpty, as our complex anthropogenic system has become very fragile during the Anthropocene Epoch, furthermore, Humpty Dumpty can be taken as an analogy of information entropy (see the following Wikipedia link).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humpty_Dumpty
Extract: "Humpty Dumpty has been used to demonstrate the second law of thermodynamics. The law describes a process known as entropy, a measure of the number of specific ways in which a system may be arranged, often taken to be a measure of "disorder". The higher the entropy, the higher the disorder. After his fall, and subsequent shattering, the inability to put him together again is representative of this principle, as it would be highly unlikely, though not impossible, to return him to his earlier state of lower entropy, as the entropy of an isolated system never decreases."

As an example of how information entropy can be increased with a system that defines term in self-serving manners, consider both the following quote by Lewis Carroll and also the following linked Wikipedia extracts about entropy, and entropic uncertainty, in Information Theory:
“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone,
“it means just what I choose it to mean – neither more nor less.”
—Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass—

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy#Information_theory
I thought of calling it "information", but the word was overly used, so I decided to call it "uncertainty". [...] Von Neumann told me, "You should call it entropy, for two reasons. In the first place your uncertainty function has been used in statistical mechanics under that name, so it already has a name. In the second place, and more important, nobody knows what entropy really is, so in a debate you will always have the advantage."
Conversation between Claude Shannon and John von Neumann regarding what name to give to the attenuation in phone-line signals

When viewed in terms of information theory, the entropy state function is simply the amount of information (in the Shannon sense) that would be needed to specify the full microstate of the system. This is left unspecified by the macroscopic description.
In information theory, entropy is the measure of the amount of information that is missing before reception and is sometimes referred to as Shannon entropy. Shannon entropy is a broad and general concept which finds applications in information theory as well as thermodynamics. It was originally devised by Claude Shannon in 1948 to study the amount of information in a transmitted message. The definition of the information entropy is, however, quite general, and is expressed in terms of a discrete set of probabilities pi so that ..."
 
formula not provided

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropic_uncertainty
Extract: "In quantum mechanics, information theory, and Fourier analysis, the entropic uncertainty or Hirschman uncertainty is defined as the sum of the temporal and spectral Shannon entropies. It turns out that Heisenberg's uncertainty principle can be expressed as a lower bound on the sum of these entropies. This is stronger than the usual statement of the uncertainty principle in terms of the product of standard deviations."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy_(information_theory)
Extract: " In information theory, entropy (more specifically, Shannon entropy) is the expected value (average) of the information contained in each message received. Here, message stands for an event, sample or character drawn from a distribution or data stream. Entropy thus characterizes our uncertainty about our source of information, and increases for more sources of greater randomness. The source is also characterized by the probability distribution of the samples drawn from it. The idea here is that the less likely an event is, the more information it provides when it occurs. For some other reasons (explained below) it makes sense to define information as the negative of the logarithm of the probability distribution. The probability distribution of the events, coupled with the information amount of every event, forms a random variable whose average (also termed expected value) is the average amount of information, a.k.a. entropy, generated by this distribution. Units of entropy are the shannon, nat, or hartley, depending on the base of the logarithm used to define it, though the shannon is commonly referred to as a bit."
….
A common way to define entropy for text is based on the Markov model of text. For an order-0 source (each character is selected independent of the last characters), the binary entropy is:

 formula not provided

where pi is the probability of i. For a first-order Markov source (one in which the probability of selecting a character is dependent only on the immediately preceding character), the entropy rate is:

formula not provided
 
where i is a state (certain preceding characters) and  is the probability of j given i as the previous character.
For a second order Markov source, the entropy rate is

formula not provided "


See also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Entropy_in_thermodynamics_and_information_theory


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 10:28:16 AM

Just as Information Theory has allowed us to adequately control information entropy to facilitate signal transmission through the Cloud & Internet to our smart phones, so development in AI can help to limit entropic uncertainty (note that all complex socio-economic systems are founded on reliability or a reduction in uncertainty) to allow our current fragile socio-economic system to adapt into a more sustainable form (note regarding the risks of AI, see the discussion in the "Anthropogenic Existential Risk" thread).  To demonstrate that AI is not just some "deus ex machine" plot device, I present the following linked articles (& associate extracts & four plots from Ray Kurzweil) that illustrate the rapid pace of AI research in the "high tech" industry:

http://techcrunch.com/2015/06/02/facebook-opens-new-ai-research-center-in-paris/#.maneks:fSzO (http://techcrunch.com/2015/06/02/facebook-opens-new-ai-research-center-in-paris/#.maneks:fSzO)

Extract: "France has many hidden gems, and Facebook is well-aware of that. The company is building a new artificial intelligence research team in Paris in order to work on ambitious futuristic projects. The new team will work closely with existing Facebook AI Research (FAIR) teams in Menlo Park and New York on image recognition, natural language processing, speech recognition, machine learning, live translating tools and more."

See also:
http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2015/06/02/facebook-opens-third-artificial-intelligence-research-hub-in-paris/ (http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2015/06/02/facebook-opens-third-artificial-intelligence-research-hub-in-paris/)
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/internet/facebook-opens-new-artificial-intelligence-lab-in-paris/articleshow/47516029.cms (http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/tech/internet/facebook-opens-new-artificial-intelligence-lab-in-paris/articleshow/47516029.cms)



http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-google/2015/03/20/a22bb30e-ce61-11e4-8a46-b1dc9be5a8ff_story.html (http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-google/2015/03/20/a22bb30e-ce61-11e4-8a46-b1dc9be5a8ff_story.html)
Extract: "Google has built a research group around AI and machine learning, and it even hired renowned AI guru Ray Kurzweil, who believes that by 2045 humans will merge with computers in what’s known as “the Singularity.” Google’s recent acquisitions speak to its intentions: British company DeepMind, one of the most advanced AI development shops in the world, plus eight of the world’s best robotics companies. Nobody knows what Google will do with all these robots and AI software, but its ambitions certainly go well beyond self-driving cars.
This work takes place inside Google X, the company’s top-secret research lab. A few hundred people work there, a tiny but potent slice of Google’s workforce of 53,600. Google isn’t alone in the quest to develop AI (Facebook also has an AI research team), but it’s one of the few organizations with the brainpower and financial resources to make true artificial intelligence a reality. Plus, AI is in its blood: Google co-founder and chief executive Larry Page is the son of renowned AI pioneer Carl Page, and he’s personally funding a research project to reverse-engineer the brain of a worm. “Every time I talk about Google’s future with Larry Page, he argues that it will become an artificial-intelligence” company, tech venture capitalist Steve Jurvetson has said ."

http://singularityhub.com/2015/01/26/ray-kurzweils-mind-boggling-predictions-for-the-next-25-years/ (http://singularityhub.com/2015/01/26/ray-kurzweils-mind-boggling-predictions-for-the-next-25-years/)
Extract:"Ray’s predictions for the next 25 years
The above represent only a few of the predictions Ray has made.
While he hasn’t been precisely right, to the exact year, his track record is stunningly good.
Here are some of my favorite of Ray’s predictions for the next 25+ years.
If you are an entrepreneur, you need to be thinking about these. Specifically, how are you going to capitalize on them when they happen? How will they affect your business?
By the late 2010s, glasses will beam images directly onto the retina. Ten terabytes of computing power (roughly the same as the human brain) will cost about $1,000.
By the 2020s, most diseases will go away as nanobots become smarter than current medical technology. Normal human eating can be replaced by nanosystems. The Turing test begins to be passable. Self-driving cars begin to take over the roads, and people won’t be allowed to drive on highways.
By the 2030s, virtual reality will begin to feel 100% real. We will be able to upload our mind/consciousness by the end of the decade.
By the 2040s, non-biological intelligence will be a billion times more capable than biological intelligence (a.k.a. us). Nanotech foglets will be able to make food out of thin air and create any object in physical world at a whim.
By 2045, we will multiply our intelligence a billionfold by linking wirelessly from our neocortex to a synthetic neocortex in the cloud.
I want to make an important point.
It’s not about the predictions.
It’s about what the predictions represent.
Ray’s predictions are a byproduct of his (and my) understanding of the power of Moore’s Law, more specifically Ray’s “Law of Accelerating Returns” and of exponential technologies.
These technologies follow an exponential growth curve based on the principle that the computing power that enables them doubles every two years."

The linked article indicates that Elon Musk believes (as a personal friend of Larry Page & Sergey Brin) that Google is making great strides on implementing AI per Ray Kurzweil's estimated schedule.

http://mashable.com/2015/05/12/elon-musk-fears-larry-page/ (http://mashable.com/2015/05/12/elon-musk-fears-larry-page/)

The following Journal of Machine Learning Research paper presents an example of counterfactual reasoning and learning systems used by Microsoft's BING search engine "… to leverage causal inference to better understand the behavior of complex learning systems interacting with their environment and predict the consequences of changes to the system."

Léon Bottou, Jonas Peters, Joaquin Quiñonero-Candela, Denis X. Charles, D. Max Chickering, Elon Portugaly, Dipankar Ray, Patrice Simard, Ed Snelson (Nov 2013), "Counterfactual Reasoning and Learning Systems: The Example of Computational Advertising", Journal of Machine Learning Research (JMLR), Vol 14, pp: 3207−3260

http://jmlr.org/papers/v14/bottou13a.html (http://jmlr.org/papers/v14/bottou13a.html)
or
http://jmlr.org/papers/volume14/bottou13a/bottou13a.pdf (http://jmlr.org/papers/volume14/bottou13a/bottou13a.pdf)

Abstract: "This work shows how to leverage causal inference to understand the behavior of complex learning systems interacting with their environment and predict the consequences of changes to the system. Such predictions allow both humans and algorithms to select the changes that would have improved the system performance. This work is illustrated by experiments on the ad placement system associated with the Bing search engine."


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 10:45:21 AM

As a follow-on to my last post, I provide the following additional links, extracts and two more images as examples of how fast deep learning is transforming AI into a practical tool for the "high tech" industry:

http://www.businessinsider.com/ray-kurzweil-law-of-accelerating-returns-2015-5 (http://www.businessinsider.com/ray-kurzweil-law-of-accelerating-returns-2015-5)

Extract: "Kurzweil's core thesis, a little thing called "the Law of Accelerating Returns."
It states that "fundamental measures of information technology follow predictable and exponential trajectories."
"The reality of information technology is it progresses exponentially," he told the Financial Times. "30 steps linearly gets you to 30. One, two, three, four, step 30 you're at 30. With exponential growth, it's one, two, four, eight. Step 30, you're at a billion.”"


http://www.businessinsider.com/google-io-could-feature-virtual-reality-2015-5 (http://www.businessinsider.com/google-io-could-feature-virtual-reality-2015-5)


The Internet of things
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_of_Things (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_of_Things)

Deep neural nets
http://venturebeat.com/2015/05/28/google-says-its-speech-recognition-technology-now-has-only-an-8-word-error-rate/ (http://venturebeat.com/2015/05/28/google-says-its-speech-recognition-technology-now-has-only-an-8-word-error-rate/)

Google: "Now on Tap"
http://techcrunch.com/2015/05/28/google-now-on-tap/ (http://techcrunch.com/2015/05/28/google-now-on-tap/)
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-05-28/what-google-just-announced-is-a-bombshell (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-05-28/what-google-just-announced-is-a-bombshell)

Smart phones worldwide as interface with internet
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_I/O (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_I/O)


http://www.computervisionblog.com/2015/03/deep-learning-vs-machine-learning-vs.html (http://www.computervisionblog.com/2015/03/deep-learning-vs-machine-learning-vs.html)


deep neutral networks for remote sensing
http://isp.uv.es/talks/ima13_km_nnets.pdf (http://isp.uv.es/talks/ima13_km_nnets.pdf)


http://www.huffingtonpost.com/patrick-daniel/on-the-edge-of-a-new-fron_b_7067560.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/patrick-daniel/on-the-edge-of-a-new-fron_b_7067560.html)

Extract: "Since the turn of the 21st century, nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and cognitive sciences (NBIC) are converging and changing the elementary building blocks of matter and machines, our bodies and brains, and even our societies and environment. As John F. Kennedy said, it seems that we stand on the edge of a New Frontier. As our understanding and control over these elements dramatically increases in the coming decades, our governments will be confronted with an array of crucial ethical questions and policy choices.
Our world is undergoing a technological explosion. According to world famous futurologists such as Ray Kurzweil, Hans Moravec and Nick Bostrom, the linear evolution rhythm is tipped over into an exponential rhythm, ushering in a new chapter in the history of mankind and intelligent life.
The NBIC convergence has already shown its serious consequences: John McAfee and Eric Brynjolfsson of MIT have demonstrated how increasing automation across factory shop floors resulted in the impoverishment of less-qualified workers. Tyler Cowen of George Mason University similarly argues that, unlike earlier spells of technological disruptions, recent developments in artificial intelligence and robotics may render large swaths of the population permanently unemployable."

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 10:51:20 AM
As a follow-on to my last post I provide the following links to high-tech industry AI development and a Google image created by their deep neutral net system from white noise as example of AI dreaming.

AI Dreaming - Google
http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/2015/06/inceptionism-going-deeper-into-neural.html (http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/2015/06/inceptionism-going-deeper-into-neural.html)

See also:
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/jun/18/google-image-recognition-neural-network-androids-dream-electric-sheep (http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2015/jun/18/google-image-recognition-neural-network-androids-dream-electric-sheep)
http://www.wired.com/2015/06/facebook-googles-fake-brains-spawn-new-visual-reality/ (http://www.wired.com/2015/06/facebook-googles-fake-brains-spawn-new-visual-reality/)


NASA has a robot operating alongside human in the International Space Station:
http://www.ndtv.com/world-news/nasa-has-a-robot-in-international-space-station-773806 (http://www.ndtv.com/world-news/nasa-has-a-robot-in-international-space-station-773806)


http://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/get-your-head-into-the-cloud-humans-will-be-artifically-intelligent-by-2030-ray-kurzweil-predicts/ (http://www.digitaltrends.com/cool-tech/get-your-head-into-the-cloud-humans-will-be-artifically-intelligent-by-2030-ray-kurzweil-predicts/)
Extract: "In fact, according to Kurzweil, humans will be artificially intelligent by 2030, making us half-homo sapien, half-computer. On June 3 at the Exponential Finance conference, Kurzweil predicted, “Our thinking then will be a hybrid of biological and non-biological thinking. We’re going to gradually merge and enhance ourselves. In my view, that’s the nature of being human – we transcend our limitations.”
In just 15 years, Kurzweil believes, the human brain will become a hybrid of biology and technology, and we will “put gateways to the cloud in our brains.” And as the cloud becomes more and more advanced and is able to store increasing amounts of information, so too will our brains. By the late 2030’s or early 2040’s, Kurzweil said, the majority of brain function, at least in terms of information processing and thought processes, will be non-biological."


http://www.businessinsider.com/ray-kurzweil-thinks-well-all-be-cyborgs-by-2030-2015-6 (http://www.businessinsider.com/ray-kurzweil-thinks-well-all-be-cyborgs-by-2030-2015-6)
Extract: "Kurzweil predicted that, in just 15 years, we could choose to become part-human, part-computer. With the help of tiny nanobots made of DNA, he says our mind will be able to connect to the cloud.
DNA nanobots (yes, such things exist) are less likely to be rejected by the body's immune system than traditional hardware, since they're made of biological molecules. Researchers have already used them to target and destroy cancer cells as well as store data.
But Kurzweil thinks that this technology could eventually send emails and videos directly to the brain, or even allow us to back up our thoughts and memories."



http://www.iol.co.za/business/international/musk-funds-research-to-keep-smart-machines-from-killing-us-1.1879199#.VZUCO6Pn9Ms (http://www.iol.co.za/business/international/musk-funds-research-to-keep-smart-machines-from-killing-us-1.1879199#.VZUCO6Pn9Ms)
Extract: "The Musk-backed Future of Life Institute said yesterday it had awarded about $7 million (R85.4m) to teams around the world to look at the risks and opportunities posed by the development of AI. The grants were funded by part of Musk’s $10m donation to the group in January and $1.2m from the Open Philanthropy Project.
“There is this race going on between the growing power of the technology and the growing wisdom with which we manage it,” said Max Tegmark, the president of the Boston-based institute. “So far all the investments have been about making the systems more intelligent, this is the first time there’s been an investment in the other.”"


http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2015/06/26/artificial-intelligence-machine-gets-testy-with-its-programmers/ (http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2015/06/26/artificial-intelligence-machine-gets-testy-with-its-programmers/)
Extract: "Researchers have shown that machines are inching closer to self-learning, and perhaps even copping a little attitude."

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 10:55:22 AM
As in subsequent posts I plan to discuss how facial micro-expressions have evolved to serve as a kind of mind-body guarantor of an individual's mental intentions that allows for reliable cooperative socio-economic interactions, I provide the following first linked reference about how computers can use facial expressions within AI contexts for pattern recognition that could be used to help adapt our current socio-economic system into a more sustainable cooperative system (with reduced entropic uncertainty), and the second linked reference about Paul Ekman's work on the Facial Action Coding System:

Hui Fang, Neil Mac Parthaláin, Andrew J. Aubrey, Gary K.L. Tam, Rita Borgo, Paul L. Rosin, Philip W. Grant, David Marshall, Min Chen (2014), "Facial expression recognition in dynamic sequences: An integrated approach", Pattern Recognition, Volume 47, Issue 3, March 2014, Pages 1271–1281, doi:10.1016/j.patcog.2013.09.023

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031320313003956 (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0031320313003956)

Abstract: "Automatic facial expression analysis aims to analyse human facial expressions and classify them into discrete categories. Methods based on existing work are reliant on extracting information from video sequences and employ either some form of subjective thresholding of dynamic information or attempt to identify the particular individual frames in which the expected behaviour occurs. These methods are inefficient as they require either additional subjective information, tedious manual work or fail to take advantage of the information contained in the dynamic signature from facial movements for the task of expression recognition.
In this paper, a novel framework is proposed for automatic facial expression analysis which extracts salient information from video sequences but does not rely on any subjective preprocessing or additional user-supplied information to select frames with peak expressions. The experimental framework demonstrates that the proposed method outperforms static expression recognition systems in terms of recognition rate. The approach does not rely on action units (AUs), and therefore, eliminates errors which are otherwise propagated to the final result due to incorrect initial identification of AUs. The proposed framework explores a parametric space of over 300 dimensions and is tested with six state-of-the-art machine learning techniques. Such robust and extensive experimentation provides an important foundation for the assessment of the performance for future work. A further contribution of the paper is offered in the form of a user study. This was conducted in order to investigate the correlation between human cognitive systems and the proposed framework for the understanding of human emotion classification and the reliability of public databases."



http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/01/19/know-feel (http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2015/01/19/know-feel)

Extract: "Like every company in this field, Affectiva relies on the work of Paul Ekman, a research psychologist who, beginning in the sixties, built a convincing body of evidence that there are at least six universal human emotions, expressed by everyone’s face identically, regardless of gender, age, or cultural upbringing. Ekman worked to decode these expressions, breaking them down into combinations of forty-six individual movements, called “action units.” From this work, he compiled the Facial Action Coding System, or FACS—a five-hundred-page taxonomy of facial movements. It has been in use for decades by academics and professionals, from computer animators to police officers interested in the subtleties of deception.
Ekman has had critics, among them social scientists who argue that context plays a far greater role in reading emotions than his theory allows. But context-blind computers appear to support his conclusions. By scanning facial action units, computers can now outperform most people in distinguishing social smiles from those triggered by spontaneous joy, and in differentiating between faked pain and genuine pain. They can determine if a patient is depressed. Operating with unflagging attention, they can register expressions so fleeting that they are unknown even to the person making them. Marian Bartlett, a researcher at the University of California, San Diego, and the lead scientist at Emotient, once ran footage of her family watching TV through her software. During a moment of slapstick violence, her daughter, for a single frame, exhibited ferocious anger, which faded into surprise, then laughter. Her daughter was unaware of the moment of displeasure—but the computer had noticed. Recently, in a peer-reviewed study, Bartlett’s colleagues demonstrated that computers scanning for “micro-expressions” could predict when people would turn down a financial offer: a flash of disgust indicated that the offer was considered unfair, and a flash of anger prefigured the rejection."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 05:37:19 PM
In order to transition from my discussion of Information Theory, AI (including machine consciousness), and the high tech industry, I note that all of these developments characterize the Information Age; which is the latest of a series of "Technological Eras" spanning back to the Neolithic Revolution at the beginning of the Holocene/Anthropocene (see the following Wikipedia link & extract).
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Information_Age

Extract: "The Information Age formed by capitalizing on computer microminiaturization advances. This evolution of technology in daily life, as well as of educational life style, has allowed rapid global communications and networking to shape modern society. "
Technological Eras: Neolithic Revolution (beginning of the Holocene), Ancient Technology, Medieval Technology, Renaissance Technology, Industrial Revolution, Second Industrial Revolution (1840-1920), Atomic Age (July 16 1945 onward), Jet Age, Space Age, Information Age.
History by type of technology: Agriculture, Biotechnology, Communication, Computer Hardware, Electrical Engineering, Material Science, Measurement, Medicine, Nuclear Technology, Transportation"

And among these various Technological Eras, I now draw attention to Andrew Sherratt's model of a proposed "Secondary Products Revolution" (circa the 4th-3rd millennia); which allowed mankind to accumulate sufficient secondary products such as: milk, cheese, wool, & transportation, that in turn allowed mankind's population to expand sufficiently to allow for the development of a market based economy (see the following Wikipedia link, extract & the first attached image):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secondary_products_revolution
Extract: " Andrew Sherratt's model of a secondary products revolution involved a widespread and broadly contemporaneous set of innovations in Old World farming. The use of domestic animals for primary carcass products (meat) was broadened from the 4th-3rd millennia BC to include exploitation for renewable 'secondary' products: milk, wool, traction, riding and pack transport.
The SPR model incorporates two key elements:
1.   the discovery and diffusion of secondary products innovations
2.   their systematic application, leading to a transformation of European economy and society
Many of these innovations first appeared in the Near East during the fourth millennium BC and spread to Europe and the rest of Asia soon afterwards. They appeared in Europe by the beginning of the third millennium BC. These innovations became available in Europe due to the westwards diffusion of new species (horse, donkey), breeds (e.g. woolly sheep), technology (wheel, ard) and technological knowledge (e.g. ploughing). Their adoption can be understood in terms of pastoralism, plough agriculture and animal-based transport facilitating marginal agricultural colonisation and settlement nucleation. Ultimately it was revolutionary in terms of both origins and consequences.
However, both the dating and significance of the archaeological evidence cited by Sherratt (and thus the validity of the model) have been questioned by several archaeologists. The dangers of dating the innovations on the basis of evidence such as iconography and waterlogged organic remains with restricted chronological and geographical availability have been pointed out. Sherratt has himself acknowledged that such dates provide a terminus ante quem for the invention of milking and ploughing.
Direct evidence for how domestic animals were exploited in later prehistoric Europe has grown substantially, in quantity and diversity, since 1981. Initially the concepts of the SPR were tested by analysing the appearance of certain artefact types (e.g. ploughs, wheeled vehicles). By the middle 1980s the most common means of testing the model derived from the more ubiquitous faunal (zooarchaeological) assemblages, through which mortality patterns, herd management and traction-related arthropathies were utilized to confirm or reject the SPR model. Many zooarchaeological studies in both the Near East and Europe have confirmed the veracity of the model.
However the detection of milk residues in ceramic vessels is now considered the most promising means of detecting the origins of milking. Discovery of such residues has pushed back the earliest date for milking into the Neolithic. A study of more than 2,200 pottery vessels from sites in the Near East and Southeastern Europe indicated that milking had its origins in northwestern Anatolia. The lowland, coastal region around the Sea of Marmara favoured cattle-keeping. Pottery from these sites dating from 6500–5000 BC showed milk being processed into dairy products. Milk residues had already been found in vessels from the British Neolithic, but farming arrived in Britain late (c. 4000 BC).
The seeming contradiction between the zooarchaeological and residue studies appears to be a matter of scale. The residues indicate that milking may have played a role in domestic animal exploitation from the later Neolithic. The zooarchaeological studies indicate that there was a massive change in the scale of such production strategies during the Chalcolithic and Bronze Age."


See also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Neolithic_Revolution

I present this background information about Technology Eras as in subsequent posts I plan to discuss the use of new paleo-genetic information as support for the interpretation of Darwin's theory of "Natural Selection" as supporting the concept that together with self-serving (Homo Economicus-like) behavior, mankind has a more than equal balance of propensity towards empathy, cooperation and interest in the common good and that Paul Ekman's micro-expressions were used by mankind to facilitate socio-economic activity that exploded during the Holocene/Anthropocene.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on July 06, 2015, 06:34:01 PM
Sniff I don't want to eat animals...
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GEVUh0GTM9M (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GEVUh0GTM9M)

 ;) ;) ;)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 06:55:53 PM
The following is a modified version of a post from the "Climate Destabilization: Tragedy of the Markets or Imperial Defence?" thread (see the following link):
http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1181.50.html (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1181.50.html)


The first linked article discusses evidence that as mankind left the hunter-gather stage (& entered the agricultural stage that allowed for higher population densities) that well-connected social networks blossomed as more aggressive male (genetic) behavior diminished.  Another recent study (see the second link, & that attached image) found that at this same transitional stage the average ratio of genes passed down to subsequence generations indicated that on average the successfully reproductive man had 17 mates; which is a clear sign that social-networks (including organized farming, mining, trades & crafts) allowed more social males (whether cad-types or dad-types) to accumulate sufficient wealth to maximize their reproductive success.  It would seem logical that natural selection will further promote more social (empathic) behavior as we transition from the industrial age (dominated by fossil fuels) to the information age (which in my opinion will facilitate sustainable behavior with less externalization of dis-benefits like pollution and GHGs).

http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/Science-Notebook/2015/0416/Why-do-humans-have-chins (http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/Science-Notebook/2015/0416/Why-do-humans-have-chins)

Extract: "Humans are the only primate with a chin, an adaptation that reflects the emergence of complex social networks among our ancestors.


Beginning about 80,000 years ago, and accelerating about 20,000 years later following another wave of human migration out of Africa, human faces changed. Our brow ridges became less prominent, and most parts of our faces shrank, except for the chin, which then appeared more prominent.

The hormonal changes were associated with behavioral changes. As population density increased, small bands of hunter-gatherers began to encounter one another more frequently. As the number of interactions with outsiders increased, those who were less aggressive and more empathetic toward unfamiliar people – which tended to be men with relatively lower levels of testosterone – finally began to see success, cooperating to obtain food and sharing techniques to make tools, for instance.
"What we're arguing is that modern humans had an advantage at some point to have a well-connected social network, they can exchange information, and mates, more readily, there's innovation," says Franciscus in the press release, "and for that to happen, males have to tolerate each other.
Over time, these original economic girlie men had more reproductive success than their more hostile and aggressive counterparts. Even greater social tolerance led to greater population density, and eventually more gracile faces came to dominate the gene pool.
And it all happened, the researchers argue, because humans started developing wider social networks.

Behavioral modernity – a term used by anthropologists to mean basically everything that humans have done for the past fifty or sixty millenniums – does not have a single cause. But, if these researchers are correct, the origins of our civilization, and of our ability to improve it over time, are written on your face."

http://phys.org/news/2015-03-wealth-power-stronger-role-survival.html (http://phys.org/news/2015-03-wealth-power-stronger-role-survival.html)
Extract: "Melissa Wilson Sayres, a leading author and assistant professor with ASU's School of Life Sciences, said, "Instead of 'survival of the fittest' in biological sense, the accumulation of wealth and power may have increased the reproductive success of a limited number of 'socially fit' males and their sons."
It is widely recognized among scientists that a major bottleneck, or decrease in genetic diversity, occurred approximately 50 thousand years ago when a subset of humans left Africa and migrated across the rest of the world. Signatures of this bottleneck appear in most genes of non-African populations, whether they are inherited from both parents or, as confirmed in this study, only along the father's or mother's genetic lines.
"Most surprisingly to us, we detected another, male-specific, bottleneck during a period of global growth. The signal for this bottleneck dates to a time period four to eight thousand years ago, when humans in different parts of the world had become sedentary farmers," said senior author Toomas Kivisild from the Division of Biological Anthropology, University of Cambridge."



The first study indicates that by the end of the Pleistocene that mankind's facial signals uniquely qualified us to take advantage of the technological revolutions that occurred during the Holocene/Anthropocene (where mankind began to dominate nature), as indicated by the findings of the second linked research (see the attached image).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 07:04:21 PM
The following linked references indicate that not only did wealth allow for a genetic bottleneck of male genes in Europe about 5500 years ago, but it also allowed for large-scale displacement of one cultural group by another (certainly including by means of warfare & enslavement):

Nature, Volume: 522, Pages: 140–141Date published:
(11 June 2015), doi:10.1038/522140a


http://www.nature.com/news/dna-data-explosion-lights-up-the-bronze-age-1.17723 (http://www.nature.com/news/dna-data-explosion-lights-up-the-bronze-age-1.17723)



http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/06/nomadic-herders-left-strong-genetic-mark-europeans-and-asians (http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/06/nomadic-herders-left-strong-genetic-mark-europeans-and-asians)

Extract: "The Bronze Age came to Europe and Asia 5000 years ago, leaving a trail of metal tools, axes, and jewelry that stretches from Siberia to Scandinavia. But was this powerful new technology an idea that spread from the Middle East to European and Asian people, or was it brought in by foreigners? Two of the largest studies of ancient DNA from Bronze Age and Iron Age people have now found that outsiders deserve the credit: Nomadic herders from the steppes of today's Russia and Ukraine brought their culture and, possibly, languages with them—and made a relatively recent and lasting imprint on the genetic makeup of Europeans and Asians.
In the studies, published online today in Nature, two rival teams of geneticists analyzed the DNA from 170 individuals who lived at key archaeological sites in Europe and Asia 5000 to 3000 years ago. Both teams found strong evidence that a wave of nomadic herders known as the Yamnaya from the Pontic-Caspian, a vast steppeland stretching from the northern shores of the Black Sea and as far east as the Caspian Sea, swept into Europe sometime between 5000 and 4800 years ago; along the way, they may have brought with them Proto-Indo-European, the mysterious ancestral tongue from which all of today’s 400 Indo-European languages spring. These herders interbred with local farmers and created the Corded Ware culture of central Europe, named for the twisted cord imprint on its pottery. Their genes were passed down to northern and central Europeans living today, as one of the teams posted on a preprint server earlier this year and published today.
But in a new twist, one of the studies also found that the Yamnaya headed east from their homeland in the Eurasian steppelands, moving all the way to the Altai Mountains of Siberia, where they replaced local hunter-gatherers. This means that this distinctive culture of pastoralists, who had ox-driven wagons with wheels and whose warriors rode horses, dominated much of Eurasia, from north-central Europe to central Siberia and northern Mongolia. They persisted there until as recently as 2000 years ago. “Now we see the Yamnaya is not only spreading north into Europe; they’re also spreading east, crossing the Urals, getting all the way into central Asia, all the way into the Altai, between Mongolia, China, and Siberia,” says evolutionary biologist Eske Willerslev of the University of Copenhagen, author of one study.
Archaeologists have long noticed connections between the steppe cultures such as the Yamnaya and Bronze Age people to the east, who lived in the Minusinsk Basin and the Altai Mountains of southern Siberia and Mongolia about 5500 to 4500 years ago. Like the steppe people, these eastern cultures, such as the Afanasievo of the Altai, buried their high-status people in a supine flexed position, covered in ochre with animal remains in their graves, beneath mounds (or stone kurgans in the steppe). They also made pointed-based pots, censers (circular bowls on legs), and were among the first people to drive carts with wheels and tame horses. All of these traits also link them to people in central and eastern Europe, including the Yamnaya and Corded Ware people, who are thought to have spoken early Indo-European languages.
In one of the new studies, Willerslev’s international team sequenced the genomes of 101 ancient people from across Europe. They found that the Yamnaya of the Samara Valley in the northern steppe of Russia were genetically indistinguishable from the Afanasievo of the Altai in the Yenesey region of southern Siberia, which confirms archaeologists’ suggestions that there was a vast migration of steppe pastoralists to the east. But unlike in Europe where the Yamnaya interbred with local farmers, the Yamnaya moving east completely replaced the local hunter-gatherers—perhaps because this region was only sparsely populated, Willerslev says.
This eastern branch of the Yamnaya (or Afanasievo) persisted in central Asia and, perhaps, Mongolia and China until they themselves were replaced by fierce warriors in chariots called the Sintashta (also known as the Andronovo culture). These people from the Urals and Caucuses, who were genetically related to central Europeans, persisted in central Asia until 2000 years ago, which means that people in central Asia were actually more like Europeans than living Asians. It wasn’t until relatively recently—just 2000 years ago—that these “Caucasians” were replaced by immigrants from eastern Asia, such as the Karasuk, Mezhovskaya, and other Iron Age cultures that today make up the ancestry of people in central Asia.
The implications of these genetic links between the Asian and European Bronze Age cultures are far-reaching: A few closely-linked groups from the steppe dominated a huge area from Europe to Asia and shaped major parts of the genetics of Europeans and Asians. “We now have samples all the way from Spain and the Atlantic Ocean to central Siberia,” says population geneticist Iosif Lazaridis of Harvard University and a co-author of the second study led by David Reich, also of Harvard. “The genetics of a lot of temperate Eurasia was completely unknown until a few years ago. Now it is almost completely known for this Bronze Age–Neolithic period.”
Both studies found that these people brought genes for light skin and brown eyes with them, although northern hunter-gatherers already had light skin as well, Willerslev’s team found. In one surprising twist, it appears that even though the Yamnaya and these other Bronze Age cultures herded cattle, goats, and sheep, they couldn’t digest raw milk as adults. Lactose tolerance was still rare among Europeans and Asians at the end of the Bronze Age, just 2000 years ago. “The lack of lactose tolerance is very surprising, because most people would have assumed that the ability to drink raw milk that you see in present-day Europeans was selected for and fixed at least by the beginning of Bronze Age,” Willerslev says.
This massive migration from the steppe also may have spread the Indo-European languages that have been spoken across Europe and in central and southern Asia since the beginning of recorded history, including Italic, Germanic, Slavic, Hindi, and Tocharian languages, among others. If the genetic affinities do mirror linguistic families, this would be strong evidence against a rival hypothesis that farmers from the Middle East spread early Indo-European languages.
Although geneticists think the correlation is remarkably strong, the issue is far from resolved for linguists, who are following the new ancient DNA work closely. “There is a real sense that after more than 2 centuries of linguistics trying to solve the Indo-European question, it's ancient DNA that is suddenly moving us fast toward a possible resolution,” says linguist Paul Heggarty of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany. But it is not enough just to have data from northern Eurasia, where the Yamnaya’s movements may reflect only one part of the spread of Indo-European languages. Heggarty adds: “We need key data from the majority of the Indo-European-speaking world in the Mediterranean and south of the Black Sea-Caspian-Himalayas.”
Other researchers say that the combined power of the two studies shows that it was people—not just pots or ideas—that spread the Bronze Age culture and genes. The studies “provide additional evidence for a mass migration at the end of the Neolithic from the Pontic steppe region into central Europe,” says paleogeneticist Johannes Krause of the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Jena, Germany."



http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/02/indo-european-languages-tied-herders (http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/02/indo-european-languages-tied-herders)

Extract: "Despite their allegiances to 47 different nations, 87 ethnic groups, and countless football teams, Europeans have a lot in common. Most speak closely related languages that are members of the great Indo-European language family. A new study uses ancient DNA to suggest that a massive migration of herders from the east shaped the genomes of most living Europeans—and that these immigrants may have been the source of Proto-Indo-European (PIE), the mysterious ancestral tongue from which the more than 400 Indo-European languages sprang. Based on DNA gathered from dozens of ancient skeletons, the study, described last week in a preprint posted on the bioRxiv server, reveals when and where different groups of people arrived in Europe and interbred with each other. One surprise is that a migration of herders from the steppes of today's Russia and Ukraine about 4500 years ago significantly shifted the genetic makeup of today's Europeans. Many living Europeans retain traces of this influx, which the authors link to an ancient culture of steppe herders known as the Yamnaya. The team behind the study further suggests that the Yamnaya people spoke either PIE or an early form of Indo-European language and brought it to central Europe, coming down on one side of a long-standing debate about the origins of PIE. That idea is supported by a second paper published this week in Language, which uses changes in words instead of genes to claim that the steppelands were the likely homeland for the origins of many Indo-European languages. But some researchers aren't convinced and say the genetic data aren't strong enough to connect ancient people known by their DNA to any particular language.

See also:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yamna_culture (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yamna_culture)


Chiara Batini et al (2015), "Large-scale recent expansion of European patrilineages shown by population resequencing", Nature Communications, Volume: 6, Article number: 7152, doi:10.1038/ncomms8152

http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150519/ncomms8152/abs/ncomms8152.html (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150519/ncomms8152/abs/ncomms8152.html)
http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150519/ncomms8152/full/ncomms8152.html (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2015/150519/ncomms8152/full/ncomms8152.html)


Abstract: "The proportion of Europeans descending from Neolithic farmers ~10 thousand years ago (KYA) or Palaeolithic hunter-gatherers has been much debated. The male-specific region of the Y chromosome (MSY) has been widely applied to this question, but unbiased estimates of diversity and time depth have been lacking. Here we show that European patrilineages underwent a recent continent-wide expansion. Resequencing of 3.7 Mb of MSY DNA in 334 males, comprising 17 European and Middle Eastern populations, defines a phylogeny containing 5,996 single-nucleotide polymorphisms. Dating indicates that three major lineages (I1, R1a and R1b), accounting for 64% of our sample, have very recent coalescent times, ranging between 3.5 and 7.3 KYA. A continuous swathe of 13/17 populations share similar histories featuring a demographic expansion starting ~2.1–4.2 KYA. Our results are compatible with ancient MSY DNA data, and contrast with data on mitochondrial DNA, indicating a widespread male-specific phenomenon that focuses interest on the social structure of Bronze Age Europe."

See also:
http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2015/0522/How-a-few-Bronze-Age-forefathers-gave-rise-to-most-of-Europe-s-men (http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2015/0522/How-a-few-Bronze-Age-forefathers-gave-rise-to-most-of-Europe-s-men)
Extract: "New genetic research suggests that widespread population growth occurred in Europe 3,300 years ago – far more recently than previously thought. And according to a study published Tuesday in Nature Communications, only a small number of men contributed to that growth.

In a separate study published by Genome Research, scientists found a bottleneck in the genetic diversity of male lineages across five continents. That decline occurred somewhere between four and eight thousand years ago. Researchers from Arizona State University and the University of Cambridge attributed the shift to cultural changes – wealth and power became more important than biological fitness in matters of reproduction. As a result, roughly 17 women reproduced for every one man.
In some ways, these findings aren’t so surprising. Agricultural societies center around land and property. The more land and property you have, the more wealthy and powerful you can become. Batini and her colleagues are slowly unraveling a complex and intertwining genetic history in Europe, but their work also touches on loftier human concepts, namely, social stratification and human attraction to power."


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 07:16:36 PM
Now that I have established that modern people have both Cad-like and Dad-like genetic propensities, and which behavior is expressed more is a function of not only wealth/power but also by socio-economic guarantors (such as facial micro-expressions) that promote group cohesion; I would like to turn to modern psychology findings about human nature that will support not only improved future socio-economic interactions but will also allow for faster and more beneficial programming of AI and of human (cyborg) interaction with AI (in the coming decades):

I begin by referencing the Book "Born to be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life" by Dacher Keltner, W.W. Norton & Co., 2009

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393337138?ie=UTF8&tag=gregooscicen-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0393337138 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393337138?ie=UTF8&tag=gregooscicen-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0393337138)

Extract: "…. Dacher Keltner investigates an unanswered question of human evolution: If humans are hardwired to lead lives that are “nasty, brutish, and short,” why have we evolved with positive emotions like gratitude, amusement, awe, and compassion that promote ethical action and cooperative societies? Illustrated with more than fifty photographs of human emotions, Born to Be Good takes us on a journey through scientific discovery, personal narrative, and Eastern philosophy. Positive emotions, Keltner finds, lie at the core of human nature and shape our everyday behavior―and they just may be the key to understanding how we can live our lives better."


Next I reference the book: The Compassionate Instinct: The Science of Human Goodness Paperback – W.W. Norton & Co., January 4, 2010 by Dacher Keltner (Editor), Jason Marsh (Editor), Jeremy Adam Smith


http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393337286?ie=UTF8&tag=gregooscicen-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0393337286 (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0393337286?ie=UTF8&tag=gregooscicen-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0393337286)

Extract: "Leading scientists and science writers reflect on the life-changing, perspective-changing, new science of human goodness.
In these pages you will hear from Steven Pinker, who asks, “Why is there peace?”; Robert Sapolsky, who examines violence among primates; Paul Ekman, who talks with the Dalai Lama about global compassion; Daniel Goleman, who proposes “constructive anger”; and many others. Led by renowned psychologist Dacher Keltner, the Greater Good Science Center, based at the University of California in Berkeley, has been at the forefront of the positive psychology movement, making discoveries about how and why people do good. Four times a year the center publishes its findings with essays on forgiveness, moral inspiration, and everyday ethics in Greater Good magazine. The best of these writings are collected here for the first time.

A collection of personal stories and empirical research, The Compassionate Instinct will make you think not only about what it means to be happy and fulfilled but also about what it means to lead an ethical and compassionate life."



Finally (in this post), I provide a link (& extract & related links) to the UC Berkeley Greater Good Science Center website:

http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/about (http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/about)

Extract: "The Greater Good Science Center studies the psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being, and teaches skills that foster a thriving, resilient, and compassionate society.
Based at the University of California, Berkeley, the GGSC is unique in its commitment to both science and practice: not only do we sponsor groundbreaking scientific research into social and emotional well-being, we help people apply this research to their personal and professional lives. Since 2001, we have been at the fore of a new scientific movement to explore the roots of happy and compassionate individuals, strong social bonds, and altruistic behavior—the science of a meaningful life. And we have been without peer in our award-winning efforts to translate and disseminate this science to the public."



See also:
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/author/Dacher_Keltner (http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/author/Dacher_Keltner)
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/topic/mindfulness (http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/topic/mindfulness)
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/mind_body (http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/mind_body)
http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_ggsc_turned_pixar_inside_out (http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/how_ggsc_turned_pixar_inside_out)
http://www.mindful.org/ (http://www.mindful.org/)
http://www.mindful.org/mindful-magazine/june-2015-issue (http://www.mindful.org/mindful-magazine/june-2015-issue)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 07:22:32 PM
The following links indicate that mindfulness practice is rapidly gaining traction in both modern psychology & business practice (Apple, Procter & Gamble, General Mills):

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness)
Extract: "Mindfulness is "the intentional, accepting and non-judgemental focus of one's attention on the emotions, thoughts and sensations occurring in the present moment", which can be trained by meditational practices derived from Buddhist anapanasati.
The term "mindfulness" is derived from the Pali-term sati, "mindfulness", which is an essential element of Buddhist practice, including vipassana, satipaṭṭhāna and anapanasati."


American Mindfulness Research Association, AMRA:
https://goamra.org/publications/mindfulness-research-monthly/ (https://goamra.org/publications/mindfulness-research-monthly/)
https://goamra.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/MRM_v6n5_may.pdf (https://goamra.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/05/MRM_v6n5_may.pdf)

Vyšata, O., Schätz, M., Kopal, J., Burian, J., Procházka, A., Jiří, K., Hort, J. and Vališ, M. (2014), "Non-Linear EEG Measures in Meditation", J. Biomedical Science and Engineering, 7, 731-738; http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/jbise.2014.79072 (http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/jbise.2014.79072)

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=8&ved=0CEMQFjAHahUKEwiIq-DE6I_GAhXDGCwKHYOlAb8&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.scirp.org%2Fjournal%2FPaperDownload.aspx%3FpaperID%3D48149&ei=PMh9VYidCsOxsAGDy4b4Cw&usg=AFQjCNHsr1unv7bTFh3srQEFYzitvWA6Kw (http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=8&ved=0CEMQFjAHahUKEwiIq-DE6I_GAhXDGCwKHYOlAb8&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.scirp.org%2Fjournal%2FPaperDownload.aspx%3FpaperID%3D48149&ei=PMh9VYidCsOxsAGDy4b4Cw&usg=AFQjCNHsr1unv7bTFh3srQEFYzitvWA6Kw)


Abstract: "In this study, the performance of Sevcik’s algorithm that calculates the fractal dimension and permutation entropy as discriminants to detect calming and insight meditation in electroencephalographic (EEG) signals was assessed. The proposed methods were applied to EEG recordings from meditators practicing insight meditation and calming meditation before as well as during both types of meditation. Analysis was conducted using statistical hypothesis testing to determine the validity of the proposed meditation-identifying techniques. For both types of meditation, there was a statistically significant reduction in the permutation entropy. This result can be explained by the increased EEG synchronization, which is repeatedly observed in the course of meditation. In contrast, the fractal dimension (FD) was significantly increased during calming meditation, but during insight meditation, no statistically significant change was detected. Increased FD during meditation can be interpreted as an increase in self-similarity of EEG signals during self-organisation of hierarchical structure oscillators in the brain. Our results indicate that fractal dimension and permutation entropy could be used as parameters to detect both types of meditation. The permutation entropy is advantageous compared with the fractal dimension because it does not require a stationary signal."

The following linked reference discusses the use of mindfulness practice as therapy for addiction (see also the associated image):

"Summary of: Craving, Addictedness and In-Depth Systemics Case Study of the Therapy Centre for Drug Addicts START AGAIN in Zurich between 1992 and 1998" by: Dr. Urban M. STUDER

http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=9&ved=0CEwQFjAIahUKEwiIq-DE6I_GAhXDGCwKHYOlAb8&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.prison.dhamma.org%2Faddictionstudy.rtf&ei=PMh9VYidCsOxsAGDy4b4Cw&usg=AFQjCNEbsIbdEcv8UPdElgv4BXYDp0GXSg (http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&frm=1&source=web&cd=9&ved=0CEwQFjAIahUKEwiIq-DE6I_GAhXDGCwKHYOlAb8&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.prison.dhamma.org%2Faddictionstudy.rtf&ei=PMh9VYidCsOxsAGDy4b4Cw&usg=AFQjCNEbsIbdEcv8UPdElgv4BXYDp0GXSg)

Extract: "The following paper is a summary of the main results and most striking insights derived from the case study entitled "Craving, Addictedness and In-Depth Systemics". The case study is based on the Therapy Centre for Drug Addicts START AGAIN in Maennedorf and Zurich, Switzerland. It was carried out for the Swiss Federal Office of Justice which con¬sid¬ered this centre to be an "innovative trial model" due to its specific logic of interven¬tion. Between summer 1995 and autumn 1998 the study was funded by the Swiss Fed¬eral Department of Justice and Police. The complete final report is approximately 400 pages long."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 07:33:34 PM
As a follow-up to my last post, the first three links lead to a documentation & discussion on Pope Francis's Encyclical on climate change, socio-economic systems and morality.  This document supports my premise that not only must governments, but also private industry & individuals must work to adapt our socio-economic system to the new reality of the Anthropocene

http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si.html (http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si.html)

http://w2.vatican.va/content/dam/francesco/pdf/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si_en.pdf (http://w2.vatican.va/content/dam/francesco/pdf/encyclicals/documents/papa-francesco_20150524_enciclica-laudato-si_en.pdf)
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/06/15/3669712/pope-francis-encyclical-we-are-not-god/ (http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2015/06/15/3669712/pope-francis-encyclical-we-are-not-god/)

 Extract: “The earth is the Lord’s” (Psalms 24:1), to Him belongs “the earth and everything in it” (Deuteronomy 10:14). Thus, God denies any pretense of absolute ownership: “The land shall not be sold in perpetuity, for the land is mine; with me you are but aliens and tenants.” (Leviticus 25:23).


The next series of links lead to discussion that the Dalai Lama (and other groups following Buddha's teachings) support Pope Francis's line of thinking expressed in the recent Encyclical.


http://www.ecobuddhism.org/bcp/all_content/350_hhdl/ (http://www.ecobuddhism.org/bcp/all_content/350_hhdl/)
December 20, 2008: The Dalai Lama endorses the 350ppm target for atmospheric carbon dioxide
http://www.ecobuddhism.org/ (http://www.ecobuddhism.org/)

http://www.ecobuddhism.org/science/c_e/fhta (http://www.ecobuddhism.org/science/c_e/fhta)
Extract: "The so-called conquest of nature overwhelms us with the natural fact of over-population and makes our troubles more or less unmanageable, because of our psychological incapacity to reach the necessary political agreements. It remains quite natural for men to quarrel and fight and struggle for superiority over one another. Where indeed have we "conquered nature"?
- C.G. Jung
Our planet is 4.5 billion years old. Its evolution has proved resilient enough to outlast enormously destructive crises that ended whole geological eras. We cannot, of course assume the same will be true for the biosphere we inherited in the current geological period.

Our human evolutionary lineage diverged from the chimpanzees line some six million years ago. The anatomically modern human species to which we belong is about 250,000 years old. These time-frames provide the back-story to all the scientific reports that now call for urgent protection of the planet's life support systems. For although the planet may be able (on a timescale of a hundred million years)  to do without us, there is no evidence that we can do without a very particular set of ecological conditions on Earth. The main determinant of those conditions is climate.

Regional climates on Earth vary greatly from its equator to its poles, because the parallel rays of the Sun fall unevenly across the curve of the planet's surface. Global average climate is the average of all those climatic regions. It showed little variation during the last 12,000 years, the Holocene epoch that gave rise to human civilization. The preceding 140,000 years of extreme climate variation did not allow humans to settle anywhere for long. We could lived only as hunter-gatherers.

Stable global climate permitted us to develop agriculture. With this came towns and cities and advanced cultures. By 2500 years ago, extraordinary developments had become possible. In Greece, masterpieces of classical art and philosophy appeared alongside the first democracy. In India, the prince Siddhartha Gautama renounced a kingdom to accomplish comprehensive self-realization.
The stable climate of the Holocene was maintained by a self-regulating atmosphere that finely balanced the concentrations of greenhouse gases (particularly carbon dioxide). These gases partially block the radiation of solar heat, from the planet back into space. Prior to the Industrial Revolution of the 19th century, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the Holocene atmosphere was 280 ppm (parts per million). Now it is 400 ppm."


http://www.ecobuddhism.org/science/popconres/twin_elephants (http://www.ecobuddhism.org/science/popconres/twin_elephants)
Extract: "…. in the past two centuries, population growth and expanding per capita consumption have contributed roughly equally to humanity's assault on its life-support systems. Reducing the assault and transitioning to a sustainable society will require action on both factors. It will take much longer to humanely reduce population size than to alter human consumption patterns. Many decades of moderately reduced fertility would be required to have a significant effect on human numbers, but with enough incentive, consumption patterns can be transformed very rapidly, as World War II mobilizations showed dramatically. Because of that time difference, moving toward population reduction now in the U.S. and globally is required if humanity is to attain a sustainable civilization. But if overconsumption by the rich continues to escalate, the benefits of ending population growth will be compromised. And if underconsumption by the poor is allowed to continue or worsen, then the cooperation we need to resolve the human predicament is unlikely to materialize. Equity issues and environmental issues are also conjoined twins.

Sustainability, from The Population Bomb to The Dominant Animal

Paul Ehrlich, Professor of Population Studies at Stanford University, is the author of The Population Bomb (1984) and co-author with Anne Ehrlich of The Dominant Animal (2010). He is a fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, American Academy of Arts and Sciences and American Philosophical Society. His research centres on endangered species, cultural evolution, environmental ethics, and the preservation of genetic resources.

Ehrlich has described how 3 major factors determine sustainability. Human Impact (I) on the environment is the product of Population (P), Affluence (A), & Technology (T); I = P × A × T . In the following talk, delivered with his trademark dynamism, he discusses how the sustainability issue has changed over the last 30 years."

October 10, 2008:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7_fC2zXFTU (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w7_fC2zXFTU)
November 1, 2011:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6M73SFtZxy0 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6M73SFtZxy0)
November 3, 2011:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHc7-275h0Y (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YHc7-275h0Y)
July 31, 2013:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8mEMxDRU9Q (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r8mEMxDRU9Q)


http://www.ecobuddhism.org/bcp/all_content/buddhist_declaration/ (http://www.ecobuddhism.org/bcp/all_content/buddhist_declaration/)

See also a re-posting: The Time to Act is Now: A Buddhist Declaration on Climate Change
May 14, 2015
http://fore.yale.edu/files/Buddhist_Climate_Change_Statement_5-14-15.pdf (http://fore.yale.edu/files/Buddhist_Climate_Change_Statement_5-14-15.pdf)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on July 06, 2015, 07:39:06 PM
Thanks for the links on the Bronze Age migrations. I studied Indo-European languages and lingustics in grad school and still try to stay somewhat abreast of developments in that field.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 06, 2015, 08:18:13 PM
Thanks for the links on the Bronze Age migrations. I studied Indo-European languages and lingustics in grad school and still try to stay somewhat abreast of developments in that field.

wili,

It is nice to be part of such a blog with such learned bloggers.

Studying human behavior is a fascinating subject, findings from which should not be ignored when making projections during the Anthropocene.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2015, 12:20:14 AM
In summary (for my preceding posts in this thread), while it is impossible to precisely project (see the "Modeling the Anthropocene" & the "Anthropogenic Existential Risk" threads) how the human socio-economic system will respond to the many different pressures/threats of the Anthropocene; nevertheless, I believe that working with a better understanding of human nature, information theory, AI and computer interface technology; it is possible for governments, NGOs, private industry and individuals to effectively work together to reduce the fragility of our current socio-economic system in order to better adapt to the Anthropocene using a Darwinian "Natural Selection" frame of mind.

However, first we need to stop demanding that academics provide decision makers with bullet-proof predictions before we take appropriate adaptive measures; because as Nasim Nicholas Taleb said in 2007: "Don't ask the barber if you need a haircut – and don't ask an academic if what he does is relevant.".

While I personally love to see the findings of basic research; we all need to recognize that in our current international socioeconomic system, basic researchers are not (and never will be) held accountable for applying new findings to solve real world problems in an appropriate timeframe.  In the world that we all live-in this responsibility falls to primarily on the private sector (and their lobbyists) as checked/regulated by NGO's, government regulations, press coverage and judicial review.  However, currently our private sector is driven by Homo Economicus thinking, which, results in a very fragile system; as indeed, during socio-economic intercourse, lust for power is lewd while love of the common good is lyrical.

The linked article indicates that currently business leaders are not adequately prepared to adequately meet even the climate change challenge at hand (let alone all of the other Anthropogenic Existential threats):

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/may/21/business-leaders-prepare-for-limited-un-climate-deal-in-paris (http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/may/21/business-leaders-prepare-for-limited-un-climate-deal-in-paris)

Extract: "Business leaders prepare for limited UN climate deal in Paris
Private sector could help close the expected shortfall in emissions reductions necessary to stop 2C of global warming warming, suggests Unilever CEO Paul Polman at climate and business summit in Paris."

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/may/26/we-need-honesty-from-business-to-tackle-climate-change (http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/may/26/we-need-honesty-from-business-to-tackle-climate-change)

Extract: "Will they, won’t they? Companies gathered for last week’s business and climate summit agonised over whether governments in Paris later this year will deliver the commitments to cut emissions to avoid 2C of warming, and whether the policies to pursue targets will be agreed jointly with business.
But is business over-thinking, even on its own terms? Confusion and obsession about the environment and about climate change … creates opportunity for the investor – this is hard-core capitalist advice from James Altucher and Douglas R. Sease, authors of the audaciously titled Guide to Investing in the Apocalypse published by the Wall Street Journal.
Money is going to be spent, they point out, and so, in their eyes, there is money to be made. In fact, across a range of scenarios which read almost like a field manual for the “shock doctrine” described by Naomi Klein, the message is that if you can’t make money by seeing opportunity where others see peril, you’re probably in the wrong game.
What does this tell us about how business sees itself in the struggle to tackle climate change? That maybe there’s a few diehard exceptions who will obstruct you, but at worst you’ll encounter amoral opportunists determined to make money whatever happens. Apart from that there are dynamic entrepreneurs out in front not waiting for government and frustrated business leaders, stuck and waiting for an official green flag.
Concerns about commitments, carbon pricing and adequate resources are genuine, though not the unique preserve of the business community, but in these versions there is barely any conception that business itself might still be part of the problem.
Business may want a clear signal from government, but the signal from bellwether businesses with a major climate impact is anything but clear.

Everyone wants to hear positive messages about win-wins for business and the environment, and undoubtedly there are many. Boardrooms would jump for joy if the EU’s recent commitment to quantitative easing were designed in such a way as to stimulate, directly, the low carbon economy.
But there’s also a need in the business community to face some tough reality where a company’s core activity is incompatible with preserving a stable climate.
Swiss billionaire Stephan Schmidheiny was an early corporate advocate of environmental action, setting up the World Business Council for Sustainable Development after the 1992 Earth summit. Among other things, his family wealth came from the very climate unfriendly manufacture of cement. I once asked him several years ago if, push come to shove, he would choose company or climate. Back then he chose survival of the company.
….

The other tough reality demanding more honest business reflection is the incompatibility of further, orthodox economic growth in the OECD with the 2C target. The structure of markets relying on the shareholder model also demands that companies must grow. But the best analysis available suggests that growth in OECD countries cannot be squared with halting warming at 2C, 3C or even 4C.
Where are the companies brave enough to even ask the question of what the optimal size of a company might be, after which it should grow no further, and how that company should be governed and function with regard to investors?
For all the decades of discussing triple bottom line accounting for social, economic and environmental performance, the single bottom line demanded by financial markets remains a trump card. Explaining why it wouldn’t invest in wind power in the UK, Shell said it “couldn’t make the numbers work”."


In order to get our private sector on a more productive track, I recommend considering the use of more Public-Private-Partnerships, PPPs, using advise given by Aristotle to Alexander the Great before he set out on his conquest of the known world, which was that to manage such a complex/polyglot conquest he would need to win the hearts & minds of the polyglot people by demonstrating that: (a)  he had the people's best interest at heart; (b) he had a plan; and (c) he had the capability to implement his plan.  (Note, relevant quotes from Aristotle, include: "The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet.", "Man is by nature a political animal.", and "Piety requires us to honour truth above our friends.")

To deal with the "free-rider" (Tyranny of the Commons) problem, the international 1% will need to convince the world's polyglot population that they have all of the world's best interest at heart (much as the body believes that the mind has its best interest at heart via the mind-body relationship); and that they have a workable/dynamic plan (which may take some decades to develop, much as Ray Kurzweil plans ahead to that his schemes are mature when the relevant technology is ripe for implementation) to address the world's challenges.  Next, given that I believe that our biggest challenge for taking effective action is entropic uncertainty (as in over-coming the Scandal of Philosophy when making decisions on the margin) , I believe that the 1% (most frequently working in regulated PPPs) will need to demonstrate adequate capability to control information theory, AI, robotics, and smart systems in order to manage the world's socio-economic system in much the same way that derivative algorithms/technology allows fund managers to manage portfolio risk/opportunity.

In subsequent posts, I plan to discuss various specific means by which systemic entropic uncertainty can be better managed in order to adapt our current system into a more sustainable system; however, you might also want to see past suggestions listed in the "Triage" thread found here:

http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1099.0.html (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1099.0.html)
 
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2015, 01:39:17 AM
The linked reference concludes that the public may inappropriately be viewing adaption to the Anthropocene as a resignation instead of as an opportunity.

Guillaume Simonet & Sandra Fatorić (April 2015), "Does “adaptation to climate change” mean resignation or opportunity?", Regional Environmental Change, DOI: 10.1007/s10113-015-0792-3
 

http://rd.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10113-015-0792-3 (http://rd.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10113-015-0792-3)


Abstract: "It has been widely acknowledged that people’s beliefs and perceptions influence implementation of climate change adaptation. Regarding perception barriers, some authors keep highlighting the confused definition of adaptation and its various interpretations. Our research contributes to this area by exploring how adaptation to climate change is perceived through 83 semi-structured interviews with stakeholders (public and municipal organizations, ENGO, private sector) from Montreal and Paris. Our results demonstrate a mirror opposition in the perception of adaptation to climate change. Indeed, while several respondents interpreted adaptation as a resignation, many interviewees perceived adaptation as an opportunity. The analysis showed that adaptation referring to resignation includes the ideas of a non-action and detrimental to mitigation; an excuse for not changing; anxiety about climate change; fatalism; and human failure. Adaptation perceived as an opportunity is divided into a source of creativity; toward sustainable development; led by the emergency; and awareness and making society of its responsibilities. Our findings confirm that terminological ambiguity of the term “adaptation” has to be considered in the decision-making process, which can be influenced by the perception of stakeholders."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2015, 01:54:27 AM
The linked reference provide discussion about a political roadmap for moving beyond the "deniers" vs "believers" impass:

Olaf Corry & Dan Jørgensen (May 2015), "Beyond ‘deniers’ and ‘believers’: Towards a map of the politics of climate change", Global Environmental Change, Volume 32, Pages 165–174, doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2015.01.006


http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959378015000084 (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959378015000084)


Abstract: "The politics of climate change is not concerned solely with rival scientific claims about global warming but also with how best to govern the climate. Despite this, categories in climate politics remain caught up in the concepts of the ‘science wars’, rarely progressing far beyond the denier/believer-dichotomy. This article aims to nudge climate politics beyond the polarized scientific debates while also counteracting the de-politicisation that comes from assuming scientific claims lead directly to certain policies. First existing typologies of climate political positions are reviewed. Diverse contributions make up an emerging field of ‘climate politology’ but these tend to reduce climate politics either to views on the science or to products of cultural world-views. Drawing on policy analysis literature, a new approach is outlined, where problem-definitions and solution-framings provide the coordinates for a two-dimensional grid. The degree to which climate change is considered a ‘wicked’ problem on the one hand, and individualist or collectivist ways of understanding political agency on the other, provide a map of climate political positions beyond ‘believers’ vs ‘deniers’."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2015, 02:03:33 AM
The linked reference indicates that introducing the social sciences more intelligently into the Anthropocene discussions could: "… extend the realm of the possible for environmental politics."

Eva Lövbrand, Silke Beck, Jason Chilvers, Tim Forsyth, Johan Hedrén, Mike Hulme, Rolf Lidskog & Eleftheria Vasileiadou (May 2015), "Who speaks for the future of Earth? How critical social science can extend the conversation on the Anthropocene", Global Environmental Change, Volume 32, Pages 211–218, doi:10.1016/j.gloenvcha.2015.03.012


http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959378015000497 (http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0959378015000497)


Abstract: "This paper asks how the social sciences can engage with the idea of the Anthropocene in productive ways. In response to this question we outline an interpretative research agenda that allows critical engagement with the Anthropocene as a socially and culturally bounded object with many possible meanings and political trajectories. In order to facilitate the kind of political mobilization required to meet the complex environmental challenges of our times, we argue that the social sciences should refrain from adjusting to standardized research agendas and templates. A more urgent analytical challenge lies in exposing, challenging and extending the ontological assumptions that inform how we make sense of and respond to a rapidly changing environment. By cultivating environmental research that opens up multiple interpretations of the Anthropocene, the social sciences can help to extend the realm of the possible for environmental politics."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2015, 08:07:47 PM
In order to improve our preparations for adapting to the Anthropocene, we first need to look at anthropological trends such as the urbanization trend discussed in the Forbes article below; which points out that by 2050 there most likely will be 7.4 billion people living in cities (more than today's entire global population) and that up to 96 percent of this urbanization will occur in the developing world.  This article emphasizes that the current global socio-economic system of dealing with the developing world through national level actors is incapable of dealing with this challenge adequately, and that international financing (private and public) needs to reach past the national governments in the developing world, down to the local and city officials in order to build new sustainable infrastructure to support this huge trend.  Further, it is my position that just as derivative algorithms (as a simple form of AI pattern recognition) lubricated the neo-liberal economic (i.e. conservative politics) international market expansion in the 1990's (think Ronald Reagan, et. al.), I believe that more sophisticated AI (such as provided globally by Google thru the Internet & smartphones) will allow international financing to reliably reach directly down to local and city decision makers in the developing world in the coming decades to provide the needed services (infrastructure physical, commercial, etc) to support this hugh urbanization trend.  For example already:
(a) Smartphones allow small business owner in the developing world to video corrupt officials demanding bribes and when such videos are posted on U-tube the demand for bribes are already decreasing.
(b) Smartphones are rapidly facilitating the use of micro-loans and to support micro-businesses in developing countries; which would not be possible without the Internet.
(c) The Internet of things will provide smart devices that can better & remotely operate infrastructure in the third world.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/danielrunde/2015/02/24/urbanization-development-opportunity/ (http://www.forbes.com/sites/danielrunde/2015/02/24/urbanization-development-opportunity/)
Extract: "For the first time in history more than half the world’s population resides in cities. The world’s urban population now stands at 3.7 billion people, and this number is expected to double by 2050. The trend towards urbanization is only accelerating and 96 percent of all urbanization by 2030 will occur in the developing world. This global shift toward a more urban global population has profound implications for a wide range of issues including food, water, and energy consumption. The move towards urban concentration is a fact, and as city life becomes a reality for an ever-greater share of the world’s population, governments, companies, and civil society must recognize that they are largely unequipped to deal with city-level problems.
The international system typically operates through national level actors, and the way we think about international challenges is through national capitals and national governments. For example, diplomacy is carried out in national capitals and lending from multilateral development banks is often disbursed to national governments. Given the growing importance and cross-cutting nature of development challenges in urban centers, this issue needs to move up on the global agenda and new ways of working with and through provincial and city governments must be emphasized.
If cities are equipped with the right leaders, strategies, and financing, urbanization can bring about immense positive changes in the lives of billions. Cities are engines of economic growth and cultural development and can offer countless benefits to their inhabitants. UN Habitat released a report in 2011 which concluded that cities are responsible for disproportionately higher rates of economic growth when compared with rural areas: with just over 50% of total world population, cities generate more than 80% of global GDP. This effect is even more pronounced in developing countries: for example, Nairobi is home to just 9% of Kenya’s population but generates 20% of GDP."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 08, 2015, 11:25:11 PM
I concur with the linked article & extract:

http://in.reuters.com/article/2015/07/08/us-climatechange-science-technology-idINKCN0PI23K20150708 (http://in.reuters.com/article/2015/07/08/us-climatechange-science-technology-idINKCN0PI23K20150708)

Extract: ""The biggest risk of all that we face is that we’re addressing the wrong problem," University of Oslo sociologist Karen O’Brien told a week-long conference of climate researchers in Paris.
Using more renewable energy and setting up crop insurance schemes and early warning systems is important, she said. But climate change “is more than a technical challenge”.
Finding genuine solutions will have to involve “looking at who has power and how that might need to change”, she said.
The rush to secure oil drilling rights in the Arctic, for instance, is painted by some analysts as the potential start of a new Cold War, as countries compete to gain access to some of the planet’s last large untapped oil deposits in pursuit of profit and energy security, she said.
But it is happening despite science that shows a third of the world's already discovered oil reserves - as well as half of gas reserves and 80 percent of coal reserves - must stay in the ground to avoid runaway climate change that could see food supplies collapse, O’Brien and other experts said.
Climate risks will not be tackled effectively unless such contradictions are dealt with, O’Brien said. One way to achieve that could be through people stepping up to try and change the way governments and institutions behave.
“Small changes can make big differences, and individuals, especially when working together, can generate big social change,” she said.
Bending political and economic power to solve climate problems will be difficult, but "we are transforming either way", O'Brien said, as a world 4 degrees Celsius warmer – the current trajectory for 2100 – would reshape life on Earth.
Adapting to some of the accompanying problems, including a rise in deaths from extreme heat in South Asia, would be largely impossible, she said."

URBAN OPPORTUNITIES

Some of the biggest opportunities to put the world on a different pathway may lie in fast-growing cities, said Shobhakar Dhakal of the Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand.
Already more than 70 percent of global emissions caused by energy use come from cities, according to scientists on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
By 2050, urban areas will have 2.6 billion more people, most of them in Asia and Africa, Dhakal said.
If rapidly urbanizing areas can build homes close to jobs and services and make walking and public transport good options, climate-changing emissions could be reduced dramatically, he said.
“Our ability to make deep cuts to global greenhouse gas emissions depends to a large extent on what kinds of cities and towns we build,” Dhakal said.
Real progress on climate change and reducing vulnerability to its impacts will also require efforts to coordinate a huge range of activities, including social policy, urban planning, insurance, weather monitoring and deploying the right technologies, said Nobuo Minura, president of Japan’s Ibaraki University.
Johan Rockstrom of the Stockholm Resilience Centre warned that “we as humanity are now in a position to disrupt the stability of the entire world system” by driving climate change.
Many economic and government systems have been designed around a high-emission way of doing things, he said. Now, “we need a new relationship between people and the planet”."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Pmt111500 on July 09, 2015, 06:09:32 AM
Could this thread be moved to the 'Policy and Solutions'-section?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Neven on July 09, 2015, 09:47:34 AM
Could this thread be moved to the 'Policy and Solutions'-section?

On the one hand I say yes, on the other hand all the Anthropocene threads are in this category now and are largely about science. It'd be a shame to spread them.

What does the topic opener think?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 09, 2015, 05:05:49 PM
Could this thread be moved to the 'Policy and Solutions'-section?

On the one hand I say yes, on the other hand all the Anthropocene threads are in this category now and are largely about science. It'd be a shame to spread them.

What does the topic opener think?

Neven,
To answer your question, I think that this topic belongs in the Science folder as information theory is advancing so rapidly that enthropic uncertainty is shrinking so fast that this is more of a science issue than a policy issue as indicated by the following information on quantum computing & AI:

For better, or worse, the three following linked articles indicate that quantum computing technology is advancing rapidly and it works very well with AI, so the companies and governments who make the most rapid advances will reap the greatest financial rewards.


http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21654566-after-decades-languishing-laboratory-quantum-computers-are-attracting (http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21654566-after-decades-languishing-laboratory-quantum-computers-are-attracting)
Extract: "Quantum computers are not better than classical ones at everything. They will not, for example, download web pages any faster or improve the graphics of computer games. But they would be able to handle problems of image and speech recognition, and real-time language translation. They should also be well suited to the challenges of the big-data era, neatly extracting wisdom from the screeds of messy information generated by sensors, medical records and stock markets. For the firm that makes one, riches await."


http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/ibm-watson-cto-quantum-computing-could-advance-artificial-intelligence-by-orders-magnitude-1509066 (http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/ibm-watson-cto-quantum-computing-could-advance-artificial-intelligence-by-orders-magnitude-1509066)
Extract: "IBM is yet to announce plans to integrate a quantum computer system with Watson but the software giant recently unveiled a new superconducting chip that demonstrates a technique crucial to the development of quantum computers.
The chip was a leap forward in research into quantum computers, as it was the first to integrate quantum bits – or qubits – into a two-dimensional grid. This is important for making a practical machine but there is still a long way to go before quantum computers find practical use.
Nasa, Google and the CIA are among the companies and organisations also working on quantum computers, while the UK government has outlined a £270m ($420m) strategy into quantum technology growth through the UK National Quantum Technology Programme.
Nasa's Quantum Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (QuAIL) is working specifically on assessing the potential quantum computers have with regards to artificial intelligence, though the agency is hazy on what exactly any machine might be used for beyond helping "address Nasa challenges"."

Also see:
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/artificial-intelligence-quantum-computing-utopia-dystopia-dk-matai (https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/artificial-intelligence-quantum-computing-utopia-dystopia-dk-matai)
Extract: "China Teams Lead The Way
In what may be one of the first clear set of demonstrations of Artificial Intelligence on a Quantum Computer, one Chinese team of physicists has trained a quantum computer to recognise handwritten characters, the first standalone demonstration of “Quantum Artificial Intelligence” and another Chinese team using a small-scale photonic quantum computer is demonstrating that quantum computers may be able to exponentially speed up the rate at which certain machine learning tasks are performed, and in some cases, reducing the time from hundreds of thousands of years to mere seconds.
Zhaokai Li et al at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei have demonstrated machine learning on a Quantum Computer for the first time. Their Quantum Computer can recognise handwritten characters, just as humans can do, in what Li et al are calling the first demonstration of “Quantum artificial Intelligence”.
Chao-Yang Lu et al at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei, have also demonstrated a quantum entanglement-based machine learning method called quantum-based vector classification. This quantum-based vector classification method can be used for both supervised and unsupervised machine learning, and so could have a wide variety of applications. It's also ubiquitous in our daily lives, such as in face recognition, email filtering, and recommendation systems for online shopping.
Tiny Chinese Quantum Computer
The first Chinese team's tiny Quantum Computing machine consists of a small vat of the organic liquid carbon-13-iodotrifluroethylene, a molecule consisting of two carbon atoms attached to three fluorine atoms and one iodine atom. Crucially, one of the carbon atoms is a carbon-13 isotope.
This molecule is handy because each of the three fluorine atoms and the carbon-13 atom can store a single Qubit. This works by placing the molecule in a magnetic field to align the spins of the nuclei and then flipping the spins with radio waves. Because each nucleus sits in a slightly different position in the molecule, each can be addressed by slightly different frequencies, a process known as nuclear magnetic resonance.
The spins can also be made to interact with each other so that the molecule acts like a tiny logic gate when zapped by a carefully prepared sequence of radio pulses. In this way the molecule processes data. And because the spins of each nucleus can exist in a superposition of spin up and spin down states, the molecule acts like a tiny Quantum Computer.
Having processed the quantum information, physicists read out the result by measuring the final states of all the atoms. Because the signal from each molecule is tiny, physicists need an entire vat of them to pick up the processed signal. In this case, an upward peak in the spectrum from the carbon-13 atom indicates the character is a 6 while a downward peak indicates a 9.
“The successful classification shows the ability of our quantum machine to learn and work like an intelligent human,” say Li et al.
Physicists Point to Holy Grail
Physicists led by the Nobel Laureate Richard Feynman have long claimed that Quantum Computers have the potential to dramatically outperform the most powerful conventional processors utilised in Classical Computing. The secret sauce at work here is the strange quantum phenomenon of superposition, where a quantum object can exist in two states at the same time.
2^20 = 2x2x2...(20 times) = 1 million plus
The advantage comes when one of those two states represents a 1 and the other a 0, forming a Quantum bit or Qubit. In that case, a single quantum object -- an atomic nucleus for example -- can perform a calculation on two numbers at the same time. Two nuclei can handle 4 numbers, 3 nuclei 8 numbers and 20 nuclei can perform a calculation using more than a million numbers simultaneously! That’s why even a relatively modest Quantum Computer could dramatically outperform the most advanced supercomputers today. The new method takes advantage of quantum entanglement, in which two or more objects are so strongly related that paradoxical effects often arise since a measurement on one object instantaneously affects the other. Here, quantum entanglement provides a very fast way to classify vectors into one of two categories, a task that is at the core of machine learning.
What Happens Next?
"To calculate the distance between two large vectors with a dimension of 1021 -- or, in the language of Big Data, we can call it 1 Zettabyte (ZB) or 10^21 -- a GHz clock-rate classical computer will take about hundreds of thousands of years," Prof Lu at the University of Science and Technology of China in Hefei states. "A GHz clock-rate Quantum Computer, if we can build it in the future, with the exponential speed-up, will take only about a second to estimate the distance between these two vectors after they are entangled with the ancillary qubit."
"Machine learning has been all around, and will likely play a more important role in the age of Big Data with the explosion of electronic data," Prof Lu states. "It is estimated that every year [Big Data] grows exponentially by 40%. On the other hand, we have bad news about Moore's law: If it is to continue, then in about 2020, the chip size will shrink down to the atomic level where quantum mechanics rules. Thus, the speed-up of classical computation power faces a major challenge. Today, we may still be good running machine learning and other computational tasks with our good old classical computers, but we might need to think of other ways in the long run."
"We are working on controlling an increasingly large number of quantum bits for more powerful quantum machine learning," Prof Lu said. "By controlling multiple degrees of freedom of a single photon, we aim to generate 6-photon, 18-qubit entanglement in the near future. Using semiconductor quantum dots, we are trying to build a solid-state platform for approximately 20-photon entanglement in about five years. With the enhanced ability in quantum control, we will perform more complicated quantum artificial intelligence tasks.""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 10, 2015, 08:34:08 PM
We should all realize that the linked research on monkeys & rats that proves that by interfacing through a computer that "… the brains of two or more animals (either monkeys or rats) can be networked to work together as part of a single computational system to perform motor tasks (in the case of monkeys) or simple computations (multiple rat brains)."  Furthermore, the networks brains could solve problems better than a single brain could; therefore, we can all expect that sometime in the next fifteen to twenty years that human brains will be networked together through the Internet that will contain various forms of AI (Google's, Facebook's, IBM's, China's etc.); which will result in "Brainlets" of forms that are unimaginable today.

http://www.nicolelislab.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/MediaAlert_070215.pdf (http://www.nicolelislab.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/MediaAlert_070215.pdf)

Extract: "Neuroscientists demonstrate operation of the first network of brains (Brainets) in both primates and rodents
Neuroscientists at Duke University have introduced a new paradigm for brain-machine interfaces that investigates how the brains of two or more animals (either monkeys or rats) can be networked to work together as part of a single computational system to perform motor tasks (in the case of monkeys) or simple computations (multiple rat brains). These functional networks of animal brains have been named Brainets by the authors of the studies. In the two Brainet examples reported in the July 9th 2015 issue of Scientific Reports, groups of animals were able to literally merge their collective brain activity together to either control the movements of a virtual avatar arm in three dimensions to reach a target (monkey Brainet), or to perform a variety of computational operations (rat Brainet), including pattern recognition, storage and retrieval of sensory information and even weather forecasting. These latter examples suggest that animal Brainets could serve as the core of organic computers that employ a hybrid digital-analog computational architecture."


See also:
http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/monkeys-rats-form-brainet-to-move-virtual-arm-predict-weather-1.3146684 (http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/monkeys-rats-form-brainet-to-move-virtual-arm-predict-weather-1.3146684)
Extract: "It seems three monkey brains are better than one when it comes to performing simple tasks using only the power of thought.
Scientists at Duke University wired the brains of adult rhesus macaque monkeys to form a network, or "brainet," and observed them in their separate rooms as they were each given partial control over a virtual arm they could see on a screen.
When the animals worked together, they were able to synchronize their brain activity to guide the arm of an avatar, allowing them to reach for a virtual ball. Their reward was a small drink of juice.
One monkey acting alone could not move the arm in three dimensions, but three working together could control the 3D movements and reach the moving target.
The monkeys were connected only to a computer, but not one another.
However, in a second set of experiments, the team directly wired the brains of four rats together, and to a computer, to allow the animals to transmit neural brain activity to each other."

And see also:
http://www.nicolelislab.net/pdfs/11.6.13_Science_Trans_Med_Duke_Press_Release.pdf (http://www.nicolelislab.net/pdfs/11.6.13_Science_Trans_Med_Duke_Press_Release.pdf)
http://www.nicolelislab.net/?p=683 (http://www.nicolelislab.net/?p=683)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 10, 2015, 08:41:24 PM
I would like to add to my last post that when human driven "Brainlets" are common via the Internet (in a couple of decades time) the more connected people who practice mindfulness techniques (see below), the better-off we will all be:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness-based_cognitive_therapy

Extract: "Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is a psychological therapy designed to aid in preventing the relapse of depression, specifically in individuals with Major depressive disorder (MDD). It uses traditional Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) methods and adds in newer psychological strategies such as mindfulness and mindfulness meditation. Cognitive methods can include educating the participant about depression. Mindfulness and mindfulness meditation, focus on becoming aware of all incoming thoughts and feelings and accepting them, but not attaching or reacting to them. Like CBT, MBCT functions on the theory that when individuals who have historically had depression become distressed, they return to automatic cognitive processes that can trigger a depressive episode. The goal of MBCT is to interrupt these automatic processes and teach the participants to focus less on reacting to incoming stimuli, and instead accepting and observing them without judgment. This mindfulness practice allows the participant to notice when automatic processes are occurring and to alter their reaction to be more of a reflection.
Beyond its use in reducing depressive acuity, research additionally supports the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation upon reducing cravings for substances that people are addicted to. Addiction is known to involve the weakening of the prefrontal cortex that ordinarily allows for delaying of immediate gratification for longer term benefits by the limbic and paralimbic brain regions. Mindfulness meditation of smokers over a two-week period totaling 5 hours of meditation decreased smoking by about 60% and reduced their cravings, even for those smokers in the experiment who had no prior intentions to quit. Neuroimaging of those who practice mindfulness meditation has been shown to increase activity in the prefrontal cortex, a sign of greater self-control."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 11, 2015, 11:08:16 PM
While some reliance on technology to adapt to the Anthropocene is inevitable, the linked article indicates how US dependence on GMO's is rapidly increasing to address climate change; which, in-turn is increasing the fragility of the US food supply chain (including increases in risk to public health):

http://investigatemidwest.org/2015/07/09/gmos-monsanto-and-the-fight-against-climate-change-2/ (http://investigatemidwest.org/2015/07/09/gmos-monsanto-and-the-fight-against-climate-change-2/)

Extract: "Twenty years ago, less than 10 percent of corn and soybean acres in the United States were planted with genetically engineered seeds, the type of biotechnology now commonly known as GMOs.
Farmers have rushed to adopt the engineered seeds since then, in part because of climate change concerns.
As a result, about 90 percent of all corn and soybean acres were GMOs last year, equivalent to an area larger than California.

“Today, no single issue will impact the world and the success of our farmer customers, our partners and our company more than sustainability, which includes our ability to adapt to and mitigate the impacts of climate change,” Grant said.
Monsanto’s inventory of seeds has dwarfed its top competitors, which include businesses such as Syngenta and Pioneer, along with research institutions such as the University of Florida and Cornell.

“When it comes to GMOs, the more we’ve looked into them throughout the years, the more concerned we’ve become,” said Patty Lovera, assistant director of the progressive-leaning consumer advocacy group Food and Water Watch."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 13, 2015, 01:47:11 AM
The linked reference (& associated image) uses readings from the GRACE satellite to quantify nenewable groundwater stress; which, will require more human adaptation in an increasing thirsty world:


Alexandra S. Richey, Brian F. Thomas, Min-Hui Lo, John T. Reager, James S. Famiglietti, Katalyn Voss, Sean Swenson, Matthew Rodell, "Quantifying renewable groundwater stress with GRACE", Water Resource Research, DOI: 10.1002/2015WR017349


http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2015WR017349/abstract (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2015WR017349/abstract)

ABSTRACT: "Groundwater is an increasingly important water supply source globally. Understanding the amount of groundwater used versus the volume available is crucial to evaluate future water availability. We present a groundwater stress assessment to quantify the relationship between groundwater use and availability in the world's 37 largest aquifer systems. We quantify stress according to a ratio of groundwater use to availability, which we call the Renewable Groundwater Stress ratio. The impact of quantifying groundwater use based on nationally reported groundwater withdrawal statistics is compared to a novel approach to quantify use based on remote sensing observations from the Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment (GRACE) satellite mission. Four characteristic stress regimes are defined: Overstressed, Variable Stress, Human-dominated Stress, and Unstressed. The regimes are a function of the sign of use (positive or negative) and the sign of groundwater availability, defined as mean annual recharge. The ability to mitigate and adapt to stressed conditions, where use exceeds sustainable water availability, is a function of economic capacity and land use patterns. Therefore, we qualitatively explore the relationship between stress and anthropogenic biomes. We find that estimates of groundwater stress based on withdrawal statistics are unable to capture the range of characteristic stress regimes, especially in regions dominated by sparsely populated biome types with limited cropland. GRACE-based estimates of use and stress can holistically quantify the impact of groundwater use on stress, resulting in both greater magnitudes of stress and more variability of stress between regions."


See also:
http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/06/17/415206378/nasa-satellites-show-worlds-thirst-for-groundwater (http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/06/17/415206378/nasa-satellites-show-worlds-thirst-for-groundwater)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 13, 2015, 01:53:24 AM
For my 5,000th post I feel like briefly elaborating on some of my prior comments about my ideas of how I see our current global socio-economic system possibly adapting to the Anthropocene before the end of this century.
I begin by quoting philosopher Peter Singer that evolution has: "… bequeath(ed) humans with a sense of empathy – an ability to treat other people's interest as comparable to one's own.  Unfortunately, by default we apply it only to a very narrow circle of friends and family.  People outside that circle were treated as subhuman and can be exploited with impunity.  But over history the circle has expanded … form village to the clan to the tribe to the nation to other races to other sexes … and other species."
Next, I re-iterate that in his book the "Descent of Man" Charles Darwin argues that natural selection developed in man:  "… the greater strength of the social or maternal instincts than that of any other instinct or motive."  Darwin reasoned that social instincts such as sympathy, empathy and compassion must be mankind's strongest instincts because compassionate individuals are more successful in raising healthier offspring that can successfully adapt to the ever changing demands of evolutionary pressures.
Unfortunately, Darwin's (scientific) views on human compassion found few adherents in those who provided the philosophical underpinnings of our current Western-based global socio-economic system, as illustrated by the following quotes that skeptically dismiss this compassionate way of thinking:

"A feeling of sympathy is beautiful and amiable; for it shows a charitable interest in the lot of other men … But this good-natured passion is nevertheless weak and always blind." Immanuel Kant.

"If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject." Ayn Rand.

"Hence a prince who wants to keep his authority must learn how not to be good, and use that knowledge, or refrain from using it, as necessity requires." Machiavelli

Unfortunately, too many captains of our modern global socio-economic system associate the feeling of pride in association with strong groups (such as fossil fuel related activities), and associate compassion (Kant's "good-natured passion) with weakness, or with weak groups that are in need of help.  Again, such individuals feel totally justified in their position as Kant states (in "Observations on the Feelings of the Beautiful and Sublime"): "For it is not possible that our heart should swell for from fondness for every man's interest and should swim in sadness at every stranger's need; else the virtuous man, incessantly dissolving like Heraclitus in compassionate tears, nevertheless with all this goodheartedness would become nothing but a tender-hearted idler."

In my opinion what the fundamental challenge in reconciling Darwin's truly scientific observation that natural selection has developed in mankind:  "… the greater strength of the social or maternal instincts than that of any other instinct or motive"; with the pseudo-scientific belief that survival of the fittest thinking is for winners and altruism is for losers is that:

Habituation leads to a decrease in response to a stimulus after repeated exposure; which results in a loss of gratitude for contributions to the greater good.  Habituation is associated not only with cravings and aversions to stimulus but also with the need for greater stimulus from in an entropically uncertain world.  Survival of the fitting type thinking substitutes habituation for true adaption to entropically changing world; while natural selection reward those who truly adapt to such an entropically changing world.

Hopefully, greater use of information theory will allow society to better reflect gratitude for the numerous individual contributions to the greater good.

See also:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d6e_Un6dv8 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d6e_Un6dv8)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFhcNPjIMjc (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFhcNPjIMjc)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLnAbkdXgCo (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLnAbkdXgCo)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Anne on July 13, 2015, 07:22:39 AM
Congratulations on your 5,000th post, ASLR. Your contributions here of enormous value. Thank you for sharing these thoughts on your philosophy, with which I have a lot of sympathy. I'll watch those videos with interest. This is an important topic, more vital than ever, but on which humans seem bound to differ.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Neven on July 13, 2015, 12:39:01 PM
5000 posts! Congratulations on being the first to go where no man/woman on this Forum has yet gone, ASLR.

For my 5,000th post I feel like briefly elaborating on some of my prior comments about my ideas of how I see our current global socio-economic system possibly adapting to the Anthropocene before the end of this century.
I begin by quoting philosopher Peter Singer that evolution has: "… bequeath(ed) humans with a sense of empathy – an ability to treat other people's interest as comparable to one's own.  Unfortunately, by default we apply it only to a very narrow circle of friends and family.  People outside that circle were treated as subhuman and can be exploited with impunity.
That reminds me of this funny, but true text: What is the monkeysphere? (http://www.cracked.com/article_14990_what-monkeysphere.html)

(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fcdn-i.dmdentertainment.com%2Fcracked%2Fwong%2Fmonkeysphere1.jpg&hash=45f1d35c84a2064c2e44e01d3e6d31de)

Quote
First, picture a monkey. A monkey dressed like a little pirate, if that helps you. We'll call him Slappy.

Imagine you have Slappy as a pet. Imagine a personality for him. Maybe you and he have little pirate monkey adventures and maybe even join up to fight crime. Think how sad you'd be if Slappy died.

Now, imagine you get four more monkeys. We'll call them Tito, Bubbles, Marcel and ShitTosser. Imagine personalities for each of them now. Maybe one is aggressive, one is affectionate, one is quiet, the other just throws shit all the time. But they're all your personal monkey friends.

Now imagine a hundred monkeys.

Not so easy now, is it? So how many monkeys would you have to own before you couldn't remember their names? At what point, in your mind, do your beloved pets become just a faceless sea of monkey? Even though each one is every bit the monkey Slappy was, there's a certain point where you will no longer really care if one of them dies.

So how many monkeys would it take before you stopped caring?
That's not a rhetorical question. We actually know the number.
Read the rest here (http://www.cracked.com/article_14990_what-monkeysphere.html).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 13, 2015, 03:19:27 PM
I admit to having read (mostly) only the early part of this thread, but...
Quote
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Humpty_Dumpty
Extract: "... After [Humpty Dumpty 's] fall, and subsequent shattering, the inability to put him together again is representative of this principle, as it would be highly unlikely, though not impossible, to return him to his earlier state of lower entropy, as the entropy of an isolated system never decreases."

I grew up with an addendum to Lewis Carol's poem:
     But an English doctor with patience and glue
     Put Humpty together as good as new.

As a young child, I wondered what this magical "pa-shun-cen" glue was, maybe something like epoxy.

This child's magical thinking aside, I think society is stuck on magical non-thinking: technology will save us, but we don't even think that far. 

Re monkeysphere: I take our trash, etc. to the transfer & recycling station so that there is no 'unknown' person handling my refuse (and machines handle it from there - yeah, I don't care about them so much!).  Although this isn't how I operate in all of my life, I do think about apple pickers and construction workers as individuals (as I have had those jobs).  Some of this may lead me to be somewhat 'happy to remove invasive species from my acre' [e.g. reclusive] instead of lounging by the community pool or joining a local politically active environmental group.

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 13, 2015, 05:17:16 PM
Quote
First, picture a monkey. A monkey dressed like a little pirate, if that helps you. We'll call him Slappy.

Imagine you have Slappy as a pet. Imagine a personality for him. Maybe you and he have little pirate monkey adventures and maybe even join up to fight crime. Think how sad you'd be if Slappy died.

Now, imagine you get four more monkeys. We'll call them Tito, Bubbles, Marcel and ShitTosser. Imagine personalities for each of them now. Maybe one is aggressive, one is affectionate, one is quiet, the other just throws shit all the time. But they're all your personal monkey friends.

Now imagine a hundred monkeys.

Not so easy now, is it? So how many monkeys would you have to own before you couldn't remember their names? At what point, in your mind, do your beloved pets become just a faceless sea of monkey? Even though each one is every bit the monkey Slappy was, there's a certain point where you will no longer really care if one of them dies.

So how many monkeys would it take before you stopped caring?
That's not a rhetorical question. We actually know the number.
Read the rest here (http://www.cracked.com/article_14990_what-monkeysphere.html).

Neven,

Thanks for the thoughtful input.  On a human level, my approach to addressing the issue of caring (or not caring) about "Slappy" the monkey is to live in the moment; so that no matter how many monkeys there are [say 7.3 billion and counting], whichever monkey that you is dealing with at any given moment in time, you treat that monkey with love and respect, and not just as another faceless number.

If that is too esoteric for some, then at the minimum, for every commercial interaction there should be a carbon fee with a dividend to society to address the externalized cost of GHG emissions in our commodity driven modern socio-economic system.

Very best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 13, 2015, 06:51:16 PM
The linked open access commentary article indicates that current efforts to physically adapt to coming climate change are not being effectively implemented given our current political economic system:

Benjamin K. Sovacool, Björn-Ola Linnér & Michael E. Goodsite  (2015), "The political economy of climate adaptation", Nature Climate Change, Volume: 5, Pages: 616–618, doi:10.1038/nclimate2665

http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/v5/n7/full/nclimate2665.html (http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/v5/n7/full/nclimate2665.html)

Extract: "Despite the need to proactively adapt to global warming, something could be going awry with adaptation projects — planned activities that entail altering infrastructure, institutions, or economic practices to respond the impacts of climate change. Ford et al. surveyed 1,741 studies of climate change adaptation between 2006 and 2009 and reached a troubling conclusion: instead of helping the most vulnerable economic or social sectors, projects were contributing to the ones that had already received large shares of adaptation funding. Remling and Persson analysed 27 projects supported under the Adaptation Fund of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and found that none of them attempted to address inequality or remediate unequal power structures."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 18, 2015, 06:26:45 PM
The linked article discusses how robots & computers are becoming "self-aware" and that this trend will continue because it means that robots & computers: "… will build up a repertoire of abilities that will make them become ‘very useful’ to humans." (note for discussion of the AI & robotic risks see the "Anthropocenic Existential Risk" thread):

http://metro.co.uk/2015/07/18/great-now-we-have-given-robots-self-awareness-5301760/ (http://metro.co.uk/2015/07/18/great-now-we-have-given-robots-self-awareness-5301760/)

Extract: "Great, now we have given robots ‘self awareness’

But Selmer Bringsjord who led the study said it meant robots will build up a repertoire of abilities that will make them become ‘very useful’ to humans.
Last year, a super-computer became the first AI to pass the Turing Test, successfully (and worryingly) convincing humans it was a 13-year-old boy."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 19, 2015, 04:35:06 AM
While I have previously mentioned that Charles Darwin emphasized human's propensity for cooperation and empathy; however, what is new to me in the following reference Marean (2015) is that homo sapiens sapiens conflict with archaic homo sapiens over resources in South Africa contributed directly to our propensity to cooperate, and that this cooperative nature lead directly to the extinction of all archaic human groups and great numbers of megafauna:

Curtis W. Marean (2015), "The Most Invasive Species of All", Sci. Am., Vol. 313, Issue 2.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-homo-sapiens-became-the-ultimate-invasive-species/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-homo-sapiens-became-the-ultimate-invasive-species/)

In Brief: "Of all the human species that have lived on the earth, only Homo sapiens managed to colonize the entire globe.  Scientists have long puzzled over how our species alone managed to disperse so far and wide. 
A new hypothesis holds that two innovations unique to H. sapiens primed it for world domination: a genetically determined propensity for cooperation with unrelated individuals and advanced projectile weapons."

Extract: "Sometime after 70,000 years ago our species, Homo sapiens, left Africa to begin its inexorable spread across the globe. Other human species had established themselves in Europe and Asia, but only our H. sapiens ancestors ultimately managed to push out into all the major continents and many island chains. Theirs was no ordinary dispersal. Everywhere H. sapiens went, massive ecological changes followed. The archaic humans they encountered went extinct, as did vast numbers of animal species. It was, without a doubt, the most consequential migration event in the history of our planet."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 20, 2015, 04:54:24 AM
As I stated in my opening post, I believe that the Anthropocene is best characterized by the Information Age, in that homo sapiens sapiens represent a currently unique repository of evolved intelligence that has dominated various Earth Systems (thereby justifying creating an Anthropogenic Era) by a combination of cooperation and aggression. Furthermore, in this and following post(s), I try to re-focus on:

(a) First in this post on how, AI and cyborg technology as an example of an Information Age trend of where we are going.
(b) In following posts on how evolution has shaped the human mind-body relationship as a powerful tool for dealing with complex real-world problems (and that this can serve as a model for accelerating AI development).
(c) And in following posts on how "Mindfulness" techniques (focused on the mind-body relationship) are already improving the effectiveness of numerous human field from business practices to psychology to social sciences (with the understanding that social sciences primarily focus on modeling human power structures) and may improve of the adaption of ourselves, our socio-economic systems and coming AI systems to more effectively deal with the various accelerating challenges of the Anthropocene.

In my immediate prior post (Reply #36), I cited Marean (2015) to illustrate that in the Anthropocene, human evolution was heavily impacted by archaic hominins forcing (i.e. competition with), which theoretically should result in decision makers placing an increased premium on cooperation and also on learning to better manage our evolved tendency towards territorial/tribal aggression for securing key resources.

I recognize that such a thread both raises the risk, and highlights the risk, of anthropogenic bias in the frequently inductive modeling (induction is frequently required to model complex real-world problems; e.g. "Induction is the glory of science & the scandal of philosophy) for example:
(a) Climate change scientists frequently show human bias when generating climate change, and associated integrated assessment, models by focusing on incomplete deductive models that typically ignore fat-tailed risk.  Hopefully, policy makers will demand that the AR6 include clearer guidance on fat-tailed risks; if not perhaps they would be willing to pay for anthropological studies of the decision making of both climate change scientists and themselves.
(b) "Intelligent Design" nuts frequently call-up the input of an anthropogenically modelled God to explain evolutionary results that they find non-intuitive (i.e. spooky); when in reality such nuts cannot see beyond their own ignorance, while others (such as Einstein or Darwin) can often progressively/incrementally see beyond such transient limitations.  Hopefully, AI can avoid such magical thinking.
(c) Crony capitalists (including some of the fossil fuel industry) could say that due to the "free rider" problem that enacting an effective "Carbon Fee & Dividend plan & associated Tariff program" is not politically feasible because there is no effective way to manage such a plan in the real world.  Hopefully, even before advanced AI systems are developed, programmers will be able to write pattern recognition algorithms (along the lines of financial derivative algorithms) that could both identify and model "free rider" behavior; which would help policy makers make more confident decisions for implementing effective Carbon Fee & Dividend plans & associated Tariff programs.
I realize that earlier in this thread I did provide wiki-links on "Artificial Intelligence" and on two key associated concepts of "Computational Intelligence" and of "Evolutionary Computation"; which I now provide below:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_intelligence (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_intelligence)
Extract: "Artificial intelligence (AI) is the intelligence exhibited by machines or software. It is also the name of the academic field of study which studies how to create computers and computer software that are capable of intelligent behavior. Major AI researchers and textbooks define this field as "the study and design of intelligent agents", in which an intelligent agent is a system that perceives its environment and takes actions that maximize its chances of success. John McCarthy, who coined the term in 1955, defines it as "the science and engineering of making intelligent machines".
AI research is highly technical and specialized, and is deeply divided into subfields that often fail to communicate with each other. Some of the division is due to social and cultural factors: subfields have grown up around particular institutions and the work of individual researchers. AI research is also divided by several technical issues. Some subfields focus on the solution of specific problems. Others focus on one of several possible approaches or on the use of a particular tool or towards the accomplishment of particular applications.
The central problems (or goals) of AI research include reasoning, knowledge, planning, learning, natural language processing (communication), perception and the ability to move and manipulate objects. General intelligence is still among the field's long-term goals. Currently popular approaches include statistical methods, computational intelligence and traditional symbolic AI. There are a large number of tools used in AI, including versions of search and mathematical optimization, logic, methods based on probability and economics, and many others. The AI field is interdisciplinary, in which a number of sciences and professions converge, including computer science, mathematics, psychology, linguistics, philosophy and neuroscience, as well as other specialized fields such as artificial psychology.
The field was founded on the claim that a central property of humans, intelligence—the sapience of Homo sapiens—"can be so precisely described that a machine can be made to simulate it." This raises philosophical issues about the nature of the mind and the ethics of creating artificial beings endowed with human-like intelligence, issues which have been addressed by myth, fiction and philosophy since antiquity. Artificial intelligence has been the subject of tremendous optimism but has also suffered stunning setbacks. Today it has become an essential part of the technology industry, providing the heavy lifting for many of the most challenging problems in computer science."


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computational_intelligence (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computational_intelligence)
Extract: "Computational intelligence (CI) is a set of nature-inspired computational methodologies and approaches to address complex real-world problems to which traditional approaches, i.e., first principles modeling or explicit statistical modeling, are ineffective or infeasible. Many such real-life problems are not considered to be well-posed problems mathematically, but nature provides many counterexamples of biological systems exhibiting the required function, practically. For instance, the human body has about 200 joints (degrees of freedom), but humans have little problem in executing a target movement of the hand, specified in just three Cartesian dimensions. Even if the torso were mechanically fixed, there is an excess of 7:3 parameters to be controlled for natural arm movement. Traditional models also often fail to handle uncertainty, noise and the presence of an ever-changing context. Computational Intelligence provides solutions for such and other complicated problems and inverse problems. It primarily includes artificial neural networks, evolutionary computation and fuzzy logic. In addition, CI also embraces biologically inspired algorithms such as swarm intelligence and artificial immune systems, which can be seen as a part of evolutionary computation, and includes broader fields such as image processing, data mining, and natural language processing. Furthermore other formalisms: Dempster–Shafer theory, chaos theory and many-valued logic are used in the construction of computational models.
The characteristic of "intelligence" is usually attributed to humans. More recently, many products and items also claim to be "intelligent". Intelligence is directly linked to the reasoning and decision making. Fuzzy logic was introduced in 1965 as a tool to formalise and represent the reasoning process and fuzzy logic systems which are based on fuzzy logic possess many characteristics attributed to intelligence. Fuzzy logic deals effectively with uncertainty that is common for human reasoning, perception and inference and, contrary to some misconceptions, has a very formal and strict mathematical backbone ('is quite deterministic in itself yet allowing uncertainties to be effectively represented and manipulated by it', so to speak). Neural networks, introduced in 1940s (further developed in 1980s) mimic the human brain and represent a computational mechanism based on a simplified mathematical model of the perceptrons (neurons) and signals that they process. Evolutionary computation, introduced in the 1970s and more popular since the 1990s mimics the population-based sexual evolution through reproduction of generations. It also mimics genetics in so called genetic algorithms."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolutionary_computation (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evolutionary_computation)
Extract: "In computer science, evolutionary computation (a.k.a. evolutionary computing) is a subfield of artificial intelligence (more particularly computational intelligence) that can be defined by the type of algorithms it is concerned with. These algorithms, called evolutionary algorithms, are based on adopting Darwinian principles, hence the name. Technically they belong to the family of trial and error problem solvers and can be considered global optimization methods with a metaheuristic or stochastic optimization character, distinguished by the use of a population of candidate solutions (rather than just iterating over one point in the search space). They are mostly applied for black box problems (no derivatives known), often in the context of expensive optimization.
Evolutionary computation uses iterative progress, such as growth or development in a population. This population is then selected in a guided random search using parallel processing to achieve the desired end. Such processes are often inspired by biological mechanisms of evolution.
As evolution can produce highly optimised processes and networks, it has many applications in computer science."

Finally, I conclude this post with a link (and extracts) to an Scientific American article about a thought experiment about the nature of information on Earth and how human society (hopefully in the near future) could change/adapt in order to improve the use of information for the common good:
Cesar A. Hidalgo (2015), "Planet Hard Drive", Sci. Am., Vol. 313, Issue 2.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-much-information-can-earth-hold/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-much-information-can-earth-hold/)

In Brief: "If we define information as order and the calculate the amount of information that our planet can hold we find that Earth's hard drive is largely empty – despite billions of years of life and thousands of year of human cultural activity.  This thought experiment tells us interesting things about the emergence of order in the universe.  Although the universe is hostile toward order –overall, entropy always tends to increase – information grows over time.  Humans are partly responsible for the growth of information on Earth, but we remain severely limited in our capacity to create order."
Extract: "The final thing this thought experiment tells us is that the ability of human networks to create information is severely constrained.  Forget all the talk about big data: from a cosmic perspective, we are creating a surprisingly small amount of information (even though we burn enough energy in the process to have liberated the carbon that is warming up our planet).
Our information-creation capacity is limited in part because our ability to form networks of people is constrained by historical, institutional and technological factors.  Language barriers, for instance, fracture our global society and limit our ability to connect humans born in distant parts of the globe.  Technological forces can help reduce these barriers.  The rise of air travel and long-distance communication has reduced the cost of distant interactions, allowing us to weave networks that are highly global and that increase our capacity to process information.  Still, these technologies are no panacea, and our ability to process information collectively, while larger than in previous decades, remains small.
So how will the growth of information on Earth evolve in the coming centuries?  An optimistic view is that the globalizing forces of technology and the fall of parochial institutions, such as patriotism and religion, will help erode historical differences that continue to inspire hat among people from different linguistic, ethnic, religious and national backgrounds.  Meanwhile technological changes will deliver an age of hyperconnectivity.  Electronics will evolve from portable to wearable to implantable, delivering new forms of mediate social interactions.
For millennia, our species' ability to create information has benefited from our ability to deposit information in our environment, whether by building stone axes or by writing epic poems.  This talent has provided us with the augmentation and coordination needed for our computational capacity to increase.  We are in the midst of a new revolution that has the potential to transform this dynamic and make it even more powerful.  In this millennium, human and machine will merge through devices that will combine the biological computers housed between our ears and the digital machines that have emerged from our curious minds.  The resulting hyperconnected society will present our species with some of the most challenging ethical problems in human history.  We could lose aspects of our humanity that some of us consider essential: for example, we might cheat death.  But this merger between our bodies and the information-processing machines our brains imagined might be the only way to push the growth of information forward.  We were born from information, and now, increasingly, information is being born from us."

See also:
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/information-in-defense-of-big-data/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/information-in-defense-of-big-data/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 20, 2015, 05:23:19 AM
As the current issue of Science magazine is focused on Artificial Intelligence, I take advantage of this to provide the following summaries & links to a variety of AI topics:

Jelena Stajic, Richard Stone, Gilbert Chin & Brad Wible (17 July 2015), "Introduction to Special Issue - Rise of the Machines", Science, Vol. 349, no. 6245, pp. 248-249, DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6245.248

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/248.full (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/248.full)

Extract: "Although most would agree that the average person is smarter than the average cat, comparing humans and machines is not as straightforward. A computer may not excel at abstract reasoning, but it can process vast amounts of data in the blink of an eye. In recent years, researchers in artificial intelligence (AI) have used this computational firepower on the scads of data accumulating online, in academic research, in financial records, and in virtually all walks of life. The algorithms they develop help machines learn from data and apply that knowledge in new situations, much like humans do. The ability of computers to extract personal information from seemingly innocuous data raises privacy concerns. Yet many AI systems indisputably improve our lives; for example, by making communication easier through machine translation, by helping diagnose illness, and by providing modern comforts, such as your smartphone acting as your personal assistant. This special issue presents a survey of the remarkable progress made in AI and outlines challenges lying ahead.
Many AI systems are designed for narrow applications, such as playing chess, flying a jet, or trading stocks. AI researchers also have a grander aspiration: to create a well-rounded and thus more humanlike intelligent agent. Scaling that research peak is daunting. But triumphs in the field of AI are bringing to the fore questions that, until recently, seemed better left to science fiction than to science: How will we ensure that the rise of the machines is entirely under human control? And what will the world be like if truly intelligent computers come to coexist with humankind?"

John Bohannon (17 July 2015), "The synthetic therapist", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6245 pp. 250-251, DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6245.250


Summary: "Some people prefer to bare their souls to computers rather than to fellow humans"


John Bohannon (17 July 2015), "Fears of an AI pioneer", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6245 p. 252, DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6245.252

Summary: "Stuart Russell argues that AI is as dangerous as nuclear weapons"

M. I. Jordan & T. M. Mitchell, (17 July 2015), "Machine learning: Trends, perspectives, and prospects", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6245 pp. 255-260, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa8415

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/255.abstract (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/255.abstract)

Abstract: "Machine learning addresses the question of how to build computers that improve automatically through experience. It is one of today’s most rapidly growing technical fields, lying at the intersection of computer science and statistics, and at the core of artificial intelligence and data science. Recent progress in machine learning has been driven both by the development of new learning algorithms and theory and by the ongoing explosion in the availability of online data and low-cost computation. The adoption of data-intensive machine-learning methods can be found throughout science, technology and commerce, leading to more evidence-based decision-making across many walks of life, including health care, manufacturing, education, financial modeling, policing, and marketing."


Julia Hirschberg &  Christopher D. Manning (17 July 2015), "Advances in natural language processing", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6245 pp. 261-266, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa8685

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/261.abstract (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/261.abstract)

Abstract: "Natural language processing employs computational techniques for the purpose of learning, understanding, and producing human language content. Early computational approaches to language research focused on automating the analysis of the linguistic structure of language and developing basic technologies such as machine translation, speech recognition, and speech synthesis. Today’s researchers refine and make use of such tools in real-world applications, creating spoken dialogue systems and speech-to-speech translation engines, mining social media for information about health or finance, and identifying sentiment and emotion toward products and services. We describe successes and challenges in this rapidly advancing area."


David C. Parkes &  Michael P. Wellman (17 July 2015), "Economic reasoning and artificial intelligence", Science,   Vol. 349 no. 6245 pp. 267-272, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa8403

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/267.abstract (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/267.abstract)

Abstract: "The field of artificial intelligence (AI) strives to build rational agents capable of perceiving the world around them and taking actions to advance specified goals. Put another way, AI researchers aim to construct a synthetic homo economicus, the mythical perfectly rational agent of neoclassical economics. We review progress toward creating this new species of machine, machina economicus, and discuss some challenges in designing AIs that can reason effectively in economic contexts. Supposing that AI succeeds in this quest, or at least comes close enough that it is useful to think about AIs in rationalistic terms, we ask how to design the rules of interaction in multi-agent systems that come to represent an economy of AIs. Theories of normative design from economics may prove more relevant for artificial agents than human agents, with AIs that better respect idealized assumptions of rationality than people, interacting through novel rules and incentive systems quite distinct from those tailored for people."


Samuel J. Gershman, Eric J. Horvitz & Joshua B. Tenenbaum (17 July 2015), "Computational rationality: A converging paradigm for intelligence in brains, minds, and machines", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6245 pp. 273-278, DOI: 10.1126/science.aac6076

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/273.abstract (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6245/273.abstract)

Abstract: "After growing up together, and mostly growing apart in the second half of the 20th century, the fields of artificial intelligence (AI), cognitive science, and neuroscience are reconverging on a shared view of the computational foundations of intelligence that promotes valuable cross-disciplinary exchanges on questions, methods, and results. We chart advances over the past several decades that address challenges of perception and action under uncertainty through the lens of computation. Advances include the development of representations and inferential procedures for large-scale probabilistic inference and machinery for enabling reflection and decisions about tradeoffs in effort, precision, and timeliness of computations. These tools are deployed toward the goal of computational rationality: identifying decisions with highest expected utility, while taking into consideration the costs of computation in complex real-world problems in which most relevant calculations can only be approximated. We highlight key concepts with examples that show the potential for interchange between computer science, cognitive science, and neuroscience."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 21, 2015, 07:28:56 PM
Before, I post more about human adaption and "mindfulness" for expanding individual horizons; I provide the following extracts about Paul Mason's vision for a utopian postcapitalistic global socio-economic system.  In the following linked article Mason makes it clear that Marx has been mis-understood for over a century (see the last link to an open access copy of: "The Fragment on Machines" by Karl Marx); in much the same way that Charles Darwin has frequently been misinterpreted:

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/17/postcapitalism-end-of-capitalism-begun (http://www.theguardian.com/books/2015/jul/17/postcapitalism-end-of-capitalism-begun)

Extract: "Capitalism, it turns out, will not be abolished by forced-march techniques. It will be abolished by creating something more dynamic that exists, at first, almost unseen within the old system, but which will break through, reshaping the economy around new values and behaviours. I call this postcapitalism.
As with the end of feudalism 500 years ago, capitalism’s replacement by postcapitalism will be accelerated by external shocks and shaped by the emergence of a new kind of human being. And it has started.

New forms of ownership, new forms of lending, new legal contracts: a whole business subculture has emerged over the past 10 years, which the media has dubbed the “sharing economy”. Buzzwords such as the “commons” and “peer-production” are thrown around, but few have bothered to ask what this development means for capitalism itself.
I believe it offers an escape route – but only if these micro-level projects are nurtured, promoted and protected by a fundamental change in what governments do. And this must be driven by a change in our thinking – about technology, ownership and work. So that, when we create the elements of the new system, we can say to ourselves, and to others: “This is no longer simply my survival mechanism, my bolt hole from the neoliberal world; this is a new way of living in the process of formation.”

Even now many people fail to grasp the true meaning of the word “austerity”. Austerity is not eight years of spending cuts, as in the UK, or even the social catastrophe inflicted on Greece. It means driving the wages, social wages and living standards in the west down for decades until they meet those of the middle class in China and India on the way up.

Innovation is happening but it has not, so far, triggered the fifth long upswing for capitalism that long-cycle theory would expect. The reasons lie in the specific nature of information technology.
...
We’re surrounded not just by intelligent machines but by a new layer of reality centred on information.

There is, alongside the world of monopolised information and surveillance created by corporations and governments, a different dynamic growing up around information: information as a social good, free at the point of use, incapable of being owned or exploited or priced. I’ve surveyed the attempts by economists and business gurus to build a framework to understand the dynamics of an economy based on abundant, socially-held information. But it was actually imagined by one 19th-century economist in the era of the telegraph and the steam engine. His name? Karl Marx.

In the “Fragment” Marx imagines an economy in which the main role of machines is to produce, and the main role of people is to supervise them. He was clear that, in such an economy, the main productive force would be information. The productive power of such machines as the automated cotton-spinning machine, the telegraph and the steam locomotive did not depend on the amount of labour it took to produce them but on the state of social knowledge. Organisation and knowledge, in other words, made a bigger contribution to productive power than the work of making and running the machines.
Given what Marxism was to become – a theory of exploitation based on the theft of labour time – this is a revolutionary statement. It suggests that, once knowledge becomes a productive force in its own right, outweighing the actual labour spent creating a machine, the big question becomes not one of “wages versus profits” but who controls what Marx called the “power of knowledge”.

In these musings, not published until the mid-20th century, Marx imagined information coming to be stored and shared in something called a “general intellect” – which was the mind of everybody on Earth connected by social knowledge, in which every upgrade benefits everybody. In short, he had imagined something close to the information economy in which we live. And, he wrote, its existence would “blow capitalism sky high”.
...
With the terrain changed, the old path beyond capitalism imagined by the left of the 20th century is lost.
But a different path has opened up. Collaborative production, using network technology to produce goods and services that only work when they are free, or shared, defines the route beyond the market system. It will need the state to create the framework – just as it created the framework for factory labour, sound currencies and free trade in the early 19th century. The postcapitalist sector is likely to coexist with the market sector for decades, but major change is happening.

By creating millions of networked people, financially exploited but with the whole of human intelligence one thumb-swipe away, info-capitalism has created a new agent of change in history: the educated and connected human being.
This will be more than just an economic transition. There are, of course, the parallel and urgent tasks of decarbonising the world and dealing with demographic and fiscal timebombs. But I’m concentrating on the economic transition triggered by information because, up to now, it has been sidelined. Peer-to-peer has become pigeonholed as a niche obsession for visionaries, while the “big boys” of leftwing economics get on with critiquing austerity.

So how do we visualise the transition ahead? The only coherent parallel we have is the replacement of feudalism by capitalism – and thanks to the work of epidemiologists, geneticists and data analysts, we know a lot more about that transition than we did 50 years ago when it was “owned” by social science. The first thing we have to recognise is: different modes of production are structured around different things. Feudalism was an economic system structured by customs and laws about “obligation”. Capitalism was structured by something purely economic: the market. We can predict, from this, that postcapitalism – whose precondition is abundance – will not simply be a modified form of a complex market society. But we can only begin to grasp at a positive vision of what it will be like.
I don’t mean this as a way to avoid the question: the general economic parameters of a postcapitalist society by, for example, the year 2075, can be outlined. But if such a society is structured around human liberation, not economics, unpredictable things will begin to shape it.

The feudal model of agriculture collided, first, with environmental limits and then with a massive external shock – the Black Death. After that, there was a demographic shock: too few workers for the land, which raised their wages and made the old feudal obligation system impossible to enforce. The labour shortage also forced technological innovation. The new technologies that underpinned the rise of merchant capitalism were the ones that stimulated commerce (printing and accountancy), the creation of tradeable wealth (mining, the compass and fast ships) and productivity (mathematics and the scientific method).
Present throughout the whole process was something that looks incidental to the old system – money and credit – but which was actually destined to become the basis of the new system. In feudalism, many laws and customs were actually shaped around ignoring money; credit was, in high feudalism, seen as sinful. So when money and credit burst through the boundaries to create a market system, it felt like a revolution. Then, what gave the new system its energy was the discovery of a virtually unlimited source of free wealth in the Americas.
A combination of all these factors took a set of people who had been marginalised under feudalism – humanists, scientists, craftsmen, lawyers, radical preachers and bohemian playwrights such as Shakespeare – and put them at the head of a social transformation. At key moments, though tentatively at first, the state switched from hindering the change to promoting it.
Today, the thing that is corroding capitalism, barely rationalised by mainstream economics, is information. Most laws concerning information define the right of corporations to hoard it and the right of states to access it, irrespective of the human rights of citizens. The equivalent of the printing press and the scientific method is information technology and its spillover into all other technologies, from genetics to healthcare to agriculture to the movies, where it is quickly reducing costs.
The modern equivalent of the long stagnation of late feudalism is the stalled take-off of the third industrial revolution, where instead of rapidly automating work out of existence, we are reduced to creating what David Graeber calls “bullshit jobs” on low pay. And many economies are stagnating.
The equivalent of the new source of free wealth? It’s not exactly wealth: it’s the “externalities” – the free stuff and wellbeing generated by networked interaction. It is the rise of non-market production, of unownable information, of peer networks and unmanaged enterprises. The internet, French economist Yann Moulier-Boutang says, is “both the ship and the ocean” when it comes to the modern equivalent of the discovery of the new world. In fact, it is the ship, the compass, the ocean and the gold.
The modern day external shocks are clear: energy depletion, climate change, ageing populations and migration. They are altering the dynamics of capitalism and making it unworkable in the long term. They have not yet had the same impact as the Black Death – but as we saw in New Orleans in 2005, it does not take the bubonic plague to destroy social order and functional infrastructure in a financially complex and impoverished society.
Once you understand the transition in this way, the need is not for a supercomputed Five Year Plan – but a project, the aim of which should be to expand those technologies, business models and behaviours that dissolve market forces, socialise knowledge, eradicate the need for work and push the economy towards abundance. I call it Project Zero – because its aims are a zero-carbon-energy system; the production of machines, products and services with zero marginal costs; and the reduction of necessary work time as close as possible to zero.

The main contradiction today is between the possibility of free, abundant goods and information; and a system of monopolies, banks and governments trying to keep things private, scarce and commercial. Everything comes down to the struggle between the network and the hierarchy: between old forms of society moulded around capitalism and new forms of society that prefigure what comes next.

We need more than just a bunch of utopian dreams and small-scale horizontal projects. We need a project based on reason, evidence and testable designs, that cuts with the grain of history and is sustainable by the planet. And we need to get on with it.
•   Postcapitalism is published by Allen Lane on 30 July."

For an open access copy of: "The Fragment on Machines" by Karl Marx see:

http://thenewobjectivity.com/pdf/marx.pdf (http://thenewobjectivity.com/pdf/marx.pdf)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 22, 2015, 08:00:59 PM
Before providing more posts about the human side of adapting to the Anthropocene, I provide the two following linked articles that elaborate on how quickly the machine/AI/information theory side of this issue is advancing.  The first link talks about advances in the use of light for both quantum computing and communication; and the second link cites how AI systems are already better than humans at identifying sketches:

http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/27791/20150716/quantum-computing-computers-surpass-limits-light.htm (http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/27791/20150716/quantum-computing-computers-surpass-limits-light.htm)

Extract: "Two limits on current computers are energy and communication. The power consumption issue comes from the fact that the amount of energy used by existing circuit technology doesn't shrink in the same proportion as shrinking physical dimensions. In addition, the speed at which computers can send information is also constrained by the limits of physics.
Communication and sending information is crucial. Compute nodes have to be able to talk to each other, and supercomputers simply can't be scaled up indefinitely without taking communication into consideration. New algorithms can partly relieve the issue but eventually, you're going to hit a barrier.
And that's exactly where optics come in. Optical circuits, in addition to quantum computing, could speed up communication; conventionally, photons are used only to deliver information, racing along fiber-optic cables. Increasing these light-based components could, in theory, help speed up communications."


http://esciencenews.com/articles/2015/07/21/new.computer.program.first.recognise.sketches.more.accurately.a.human (http://esciencenews.com/articles/2015/07/21/new.computer.program.first.recognise.sketches.more.accurately.a.human)

Extract: "Net, the program is capable of correctly identifying the subject of sketches 74.9 per cent of the time compared to humans that only managed a success rate of 73.1 per cent. As sketching becomes more relevant with the increase in the use of touchscreens, the development could provide a foundation for new ways to interact with computers."

See also:

http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/28074/20150722/new-computer-program-recognizes-sketches-better-humans.htm (http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/28074/20150722/new-computer-program-recognizes-sketches-better-humans.htm)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 23, 2015, 02:50:46 AM
In the first linked reference (& linked YouTube video)the social evolutionist Nicholas Humphrey proposes that human consciousness be considered as an illusion of a brain which he chooses to call brain art.  Furthermore, he proposes that "… the evolutionary function of brain art is nothing less than to induce you to fall in love with yourself …"; which he asserts is indicated by Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection.  As I believe that human consciousness has many different forms, I believe that Humphrey's proposal best matches consciousness associated with one's ego; where one spends a lifetime painting a sensory (feelings, emotions, etc., in a mind-body content) picture of oneself in one's mind and in the minds of those around the person.  In this sense, the ego is the part of oneself that takes the credit for all the hard work that one does in living a life.

Nicholas Humphrey (2015), "Consciousness As Art", Scientific American Mind 26, 64 – 69, doi:10.1038/scientificamericanmind0515-64

http://www.nature.com/scientificamericanmind/journal/v26/n3/full/scientificamericanmind0515-64.html (http://www.nature.com/scientificamericanmind/journal/v26/n3/full/scientificamericanmind0515-64.html)

Extract: "1.  Debate rages as to whether the qualities of conscious experience can be explained simply as the workings of the physical brain or whether there must be an additional ingredient of a nonphysical kind.
2.  Considering consciousness to be an illusion—a mere trick of the physical brain—offends people, so perhaps we should think of consciousness as art instead. Whereas people resent being duped by illusions, they are proud to be art lovers.
3.  If our brains have evolved to create masterpieces of consciousness for our private enjoyment, scientists will want to know what the evolutionary payoff is. Perhaps the purpose of this brain art is to make people fall in love with themselves—and other people, too

Darwin suggested that one of the chief functions of human art, too, is to induce the onlooker to fall in love with the artist.
Thus, an extraordinary possibility suggests itself: the evolutionary function of brain art is nothing less than to induce you to fall in love with yourself.
….
French philosopher Rene Descartes famously intoned: "I think, therefore, I am."  But the self that evolves around sensory consciousness is deeper and more generous: I feel, therefore I am."

See also: Social evolutionist Nicholas Humphrey "The Magic of Consciousness"
! No longer available (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NHXCi6yZ-eA#)

Further, to Humphrey's notion that sensory consciousness is developed by placing one's ego at the center of a brilliant and perplexing work of brain art that encourages one to think of all humans as equally touched by such magic of consciousness [noting that Humphrey is pandering (e.g. to those who talk about "intelligent design") by the use of the term magic].  The Buddha would concur that there is no magic in human sensory consciousness; but that living entirely in the moment (see my Reply # 33) that sensory consciousness can be transformed into awe-inspiring, unexplainably beautiful reality/nirvana.  However, there are many paradoxes in Buddhist thought such as that illustrated by Beisser (1970) where he describes the paradoxical theory of change as the change that "… occurs when one becomes what he is, not when he tries to become what he is not."

Arnold Beisser (1970), "Paradoxical Theory of Change", Gestalt Therapy Now, a publication of The Gestalt Journal Press

Extract: “I will call it the paradoxical theory of change, for reasons that shall become obvious. Briefly stated, it is this: that change occurs when one becomes what he is, not when he tries to become what he is not. Change does not take place through a coercive attempt by the individual or by another person to change him, but it does take place if one takes the time and effort to be what he is — to be fully invested in his current positions. By rejecting the role of change agent, we make meaningful and orderly change possible.”

Bering in mind both Humphrey's and Beisser's insights, when one (or a society) needs to adapt to the stresses continuously coming in the Anthropocene, one needs to stop painting sensory egotistical brain art of what changes one can enact but when one learns to live in the moment with oneself and those around oneself,  that gratitude and appreciation will automatically result in changes leading to the common good.  While this may sound like philosophical pablum, when considering programing for future AI, such insights can both allow AI to benefit from human mind-body sensory guidelines by using the Facial Action Coding System (FACS) [see Keltner (2009) below] by scanning images of humans in order to use human sensations (emotions, feeling, etc.) as a guarantor of morality in evaluating what is the common good.  In this sense not only humans, but also AI, must positively feedback one's activities that promote the common good and resist one's activities that degrade the common good, as evaluated by moment to moment mind-body sensations (this will likely be facilitated in the future when both humans and AI are connected directly to each other via the Internet, forming new sensory "brainlets".

Dacher Keltner (2009), "Born to be Good", W.W. Norton & Company
Extracts: "I have been led to the idea that emotion is the source of the meaningful life.
..
This idea proved to have the deepest scientific promise in the hands of Charles Darwin, who believed that brief emotional expressions offer clues to the deep origins of our design, and Paul Ekman, who figured out how to bring quantifiable order to the thousands of movements of the face.

The reader may be surprised to learn that:
- We are a caretaking species.  The profound vulnerability of our offspring rearranged our social organization as well as our nervous system.
- We are a face-to-face species.  We are remarkable in our capacity to empathize, to mimic, to mirror.
-  Our power hierarchies differ from those of other species; power goes to the most emotionally intelligent.
-  We reconcile our conflicts rather than fleeing or killing; we have evolved powerful capacities to forgive.
-  We live in complex patterns of fragile monogamy, preferring monogamy but often showing patterns of serial monogamy.

Darwin's "Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals" sold 9,000 copies in its first printing, becoming a best seller in its day.

The facial expression we observe today are a rich shorthand for communicating the possibility of more full-bodied actions – attack, flight, embrace.

Paul Ekman put Darwin's universality thesis to a simple empirical test.

To capture the objective subjective, Ekman and Wallace Friesen devoted seven years, without funding or promise of publication, to developing the Facial Action Coding System (FACS), an anatomically based method for identifying every visible facial muscle movement in the frame-by-frame analysis of facial expression as it occurs in the seamless flow of social interaction."

I close this post by pointing out that currently excessive dependence of feeding one ego (sensory consciousness) via social media (selfies, blogging, Facebooking, etc.) and other technological connections (including news media) can lead to increasing shallowness and banality; unless one is actively engaging in the moment in discourse with others.  This point is illustrated by the following extract from a July 21 2015 interview with President Obama; where he encourages citizens to actively engaged in discussing policy issues; in order to avoid the “Balkanization” of the media and of our policy makers.  This will accelerate our adaption to the Anthropocene by taking up to a postcapitalistic global system suitable for the Information Age that we live in.


From an interview of President Obama on July 21 2015:

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/USA-Update/2015/0722/Obama-on-The-Daily-Show-What-happened-to-common-conversation (http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/USA-Update/2015/0722/Obama-on-The-Daily-Show-What-happened-to-common-conversation)

Extract: "“The one thing I know as I enter my last year as president is the country is full of good and decent people and there is a sense of common purpose at the neighborhood level and at the school and in the workplace,” Mr. Obama told host Jon Stewart.
“And that dissipates the further up it goes because of the money and all the filters and all the polarizing that takes place in how politics are shaped,” he continued.
Part of this polarization, Obama said, is due to the changing nature of the media.
“I think [the media] gets distracted by shiny objects and doesn’t always focus on the big, tough choices and decisions that have to be made. And part of that is just the changing nature of technology,” he said.
The president admitted that the White House was “way too slow in trying to redesign and reengineer” the structure of its Press Office to adapt to online and social media, and lamented the “Balkanization” of the media in recent years.
“You’ve got folks who are constantly looking for facts that reinforce their existing point of view as opposed to having a common conversation,” Obama said. “I think one of the things that we have to think about, not just the president but all of us, is how do we join together in a common conversation about something other than the Super Bowl.” 
The only way everyday citizens can prevent this polarization, the president continued, is by getting involved and contacting local representatives. He went on to “guarantee” that “if people feel strongly about making sure Iran doesn’t get a nuclear weapon without us going to war and that is expressed to Congress, then people will believe in that.”"

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Anne on July 23, 2015, 08:25:23 PM
I sometimes wonder whether there is really a dividing line between science and philosophy and if so, where it is.

Greatly appreciate these thoughtful posts, ASLR. If this forum had a Like button, I expect you'd have a much better sense of how well received your posts are.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 24, 2015, 02:28:45 AM
I sometimes wonder whether there is really a dividing line between science and philosophy and if so, where it is.

Greatly appreciate these thoughtful posts, ASLR. If this forum had a Like button, I expect you'd have a much better sense of how well received your posts are.

Anne,

You are very kind, but with something like twenty views per post, I have some idea how well received my posts are; nevertheless, I am posting in the Science folder because I prefer to minimize pontifications on great philosophical matters but rather to focus of the use of inductive logic to estimate where society may be going.  While, to paraphrase the philosopher C. D. Broad again: "Induction is the glory of science and the scandal of philosophy."

To me science bounds uncertainty in a manner that can be tested to demonstrate an actual difference in once life; while philosophy does not adequately constrain uncertainties to the point where one knows that one is headed on the right path or not.  In this sense, science creates models that are wrong but are useful; while philosophy creates models that contain some element of magical thinking, that may or may not be helpful.

In this sense, IPCC climate scientists may be engaging in magic thinking by not adequately conveying to policy makers the true extent of uncertainty (particularly upper bound uncertainty) in their models; thus making their projections less scientific and more akin to wishful/magical thinking.  Similarly, modern captains of industry have created rosy social images of their prowess in creating jobs and wealth; but it is wishful thinking to believe that they can continue on with BAU behavior where they monopolize information in a crony capitalistic fashion in order to maintain their power/control; when the coming challenges of the Anthropocene will require society to break-up information monopolies in order to achieve a more sustainable & equable socio-economic system more in keeping with the Information Age that we have begun.

Again, what really matters is that the models (scientific, social, mental, etc.) can be grounded in the truth of an ever changing reality and not in some philosophical mental construct.

Very best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Anne on July 24, 2015, 02:51:19 AM
Quote
To me science bounds uncertainty in a manner that can be tested to demonstrate an actual difference in once life; while philosophy does not adequately constrain uncertainties to the point where one knows that one is headed on the right path or not.  In this sense, science creates models that are wrong but are useful; while philosophy creates models that contain some element of magical thinking, that may or may not be helpful.
That is not the philosophy that I studied, which was empirical.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 24, 2015, 04:21:25 AM
Quote
To me science bounds uncertainty in a manner that can be tested to demonstrate an actual difference in once life; while philosophy does not adequately constrain uncertainties to the point where one knows that one is headed on the right path or not.  In this sense, science creates models that are wrong but are useful; while philosophy creates models that contain some element of magical thinking, that may or may not be helpful.
That is not the philosophy that I studied, which was empirical.

If so then maybe science and philosophy are converging, but only when both are grounded (verifiable) with the truth of any given moment.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 24, 2015, 04:31:30 PM
Science magazine has another special issue (like the recent one focused on AI & information theory, see Reply #38), this time on paleo issues that are relevant to human evolution, the implications of the Sixth Extinction event that we are in, and in general a revolution in the "softer" sciences that are shining a new light on what it will take to adapt to the Anthropocene (see both the overview in the first link and a key article focused on human evolution in the second link):

http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/07/special-issue-mammoths-neandertals-ancient-dna-unlocks-mysteries-past?rss=1 (http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/07/special-issue-mammoths-neandertals-ancient-dna-unlocks-mysteries-past?rss=1)


Ann Gibbons (July 24 2915), "Revolution in human evolution", Science, Vol. 349 no. 6246 pp. 362-366, DOI: 10.1126/science.349.6246.362


http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6246/362.summary (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/349/6246/362.summary)


Abstract: "New breakthroughs in ancient DNA are causing a revolution in the study of human evolution. By sequencing ancient DNA from the fossils of human ancestors, researchers have recently discovered new types of ancient humans and revealed interbreeding between our ancestors and our archaic cousins, including Neandertals. They are exploring how that genetic legacy is shaping our health and appearance today. And now that investigators can sequence entire ancient populations, ancient DNA is revealing that humans on every continent are a complex mix of archaic and modern DNA. Ancient DNA is enabling researchers to answer questions they could not previously address. As a result, archaeologists, anthropologists, and population geneticists are now seeking collaborations with ancient DNA researchers."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 25, 2015, 05:18:36 AM
Quote
To me science bounds uncertainty in a manner that can be tested to demonstrate an actual difference in once life; while philosophy does not adequately constrain uncertainties to the point where one knows that one is headed on the right path or not.  In this sense, science creates models that are wrong but are useful; while philosophy creates models that contain some element of magical thinking, that may or may not be helpful.
That is not the philosophy that I studied, which was empirical.

If so then maybe science and philosophy are converging, but only when both are grounded (verifiable) with the truth of any given moment.

In Reply #43 I misquoted C. D. Broad when I wrote: "induction is the glory of science and the scandal of philosophy"; as the actual quote was: "May we venture to hope that when Bacon's next centenary is celebrated the great work which he set going will be completed; and that Inductive Reasoning, which has long been the glory of Science, will have ceased to be the scandal of Philosophy? "  Broad, C.D. (1926), "The philosophy of Francis Bacon: An address delivered at Cambridge on the occasion of the Bacon tercentenary, 5 October, 1926", Cambridge: University Press, p. 67.

This makes it clear that the philosopher C.D. Broad was hoping that by 2026 that human effort (on empiricism and the scientific method) will bring science and philosophy sufficiently close together that philosophy will be able to employ inductive reasoning to provide usefully guidance regarding our currently unbalanced socio-economic systems (see the two following links to Wikipedia articles about Francis Bacon and the scientific method).


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Bacon

Extract: "Francis Bacon, Viscount St. Alban, Kt PC QC (/ˈbeɪkən/; 22 January 1561 – 9 April 1626), was an English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, orator, essayist and author. He served both as Attorney General and Lord Chancellor of England. After his death, he remained extremely influential through his works, especially as philosophical advocate and practitioner of the scientific method during the scientific revolution.
Bacon has been called the father of empiricism. His works established and popularised inductive methodologies for scientific inquiry, often called the Baconian method, or simply the scientific method. His demand for a planned procedure of investigating all things natural marked a new turn in the rhetorical and theoretical framework for science, much of which still surrounds conceptions of proper methodology today.

In 1733 Voltaire "introduced him as the "father" of the scientific method" to a French audience, an understanding which had become widespread by 1750. In the 19th century his emphasis on induction was revived and developed by William Whewell, among others. He has been reputed as the "Father of Experimental Science"."


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_method
Extract: "The scientific method is a body of techniques for investigating phenomena, acquiring new knowledge, or correcting and integrating previous knowledge. To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry is commonly based on empirical or measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning. The Oxford English Dictionary defines the scientific method as "a method or procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses."
The scientific method is an ongoing process, which usually begins with observations about the natural world. Human beings are naturally inquisitive, so they often come up with questions about things they see or hear and often develop ideas (hypotheses) about why things are the way they are. The best hypotheses lead to predictions that can be tested in various ways, including making further observations about nature. In general, the strongest tests of hypotheses come from carefully controlled and replicated experiments that gather empirical data. Depending on how well the tests match the predictions, the original hypothesis may require refinement, alteration, expansion or even rejection. If a particular hypothesis becomes very well supported a general theory may be developed."

Therefore, science Bacon saw the scientific method as a philosophy, and as Broad hopes that philosophy can avoid the scandal of inductive reasoning by 2026; and as Anne believes that empirical philosophy appears to be moving significantly closer to the scientific method; I have decided that unless someone object by Monday, then I will been to include my version of philosophical posts in this thread.  If some does object by Monday, then I will open a new thread in "The Rest" folder entitled "Philosophy in the Anthropocene".
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 27, 2015, 12:57:00 PM
First, I would like to note that I have not studied philosophy, so feel free to update me if I am making illogical, or poorly conceived, points.  That said, I believe that any/all philosophies should be practical, in that they should provide one (and/or the common good) with some benefit, or improvement.  In this regards I note that most philosophies are associated with some theology, or other; and in this regards the philosophy that I hope to espouse has something called "swimology" because it only requires that one accept issues that one understands will practically help keep himself/herself afloat in the current and coming troubled waters of life.  Again, in this regards, I am not interested in discussing philosophies that cannot be demonstrated to provide some measurable benefit.

Furthermore, I believe that to maximize the benefit (for oneself/the common good), one must work responsibly to gradually become able to apply one's swimology effectively in the ever changing world that we all live in.  In this regard, progress on mental improvement is most important.  One example of a technic to improve one's mind is mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) as described in the following wiki-link (& associated extract):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness-based_cognitive_therapy (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mindfulness-based_cognitive_therapy)

Extract: "Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) is a psychological therapy designed to aid in preventing the relapse of depression, specifically in individuals with Major depressive disorder (MDD). It uses traditional Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) methods and adds in newer psychological strategies such as mindfulness and mindfulness meditation. Cognitive methods can include educating the participant about depression. Mindfulness and mindfulness meditation, focus on becoming aware of all incoming thoughts and feelings and accepting them, but not attaching or reacting to them. Like CBT, MBCT functions on the theory that when individuals who have historically had depression become distressed, they return to automatic cognitive processes that can trigger a depressive episode. The goal of MBCT is to interrupt these automatic processes and teach the participants to focus less on reacting to incoming stimuli, and instead accepting and observing them without judgment. This mindfulness practice allows the participant to notice when automatic processes are occurring and to alter their reaction to be more of a reflection.
Beyond its use in reducing depressive acuity, research additionally supports the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation upon reducing cravings for substances that people are addicted to. Addiction is known to involve the weakening of the prefrontal cortex that ordinarily allows for delaying of immediate gratification for longer term benefits by the limbic and paralimbic brain regions. Mindfulness meditation of smokers over a two-week period totaling 5 hours of meditation decreased smoking by about 60% and reduced their cravings, even for those smokers in the experiment who had no prior intentions to quit. Neuroimaging of those who practice mindfulness meditation has been shown to increase activity in the prefrontal cortex, a sign of greater self-control."

Another, still deeper technic for mental improvement/purification is Vipassana-medition.  As indicated in the information contained in the following Wikipedia link Vipassanā is a Pāli [the ancient Indian language used by the Buddha Siddharttha Gotama (Pali)] word meaning: "… insight into the true nature of reality, …".  Furthermore, this Wikipedia link acknowledges that:  "Vipassanā-meditation is an ancient practice taught by Buddhas, reintroduced by Ledi Sayadaw and Mogok Sayadaw and popularized by Mahasi Sayadaw, S. N. Goenka and the Vipassana movement, in which mindfulness of breathing and of thoughts, feelings and actions are being used to gain insight in the true nature of reality."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vipassan%C4%81 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vipassan%C4%81)

Extract: "Vipassanā (Pāli) or vipaśyanā … in the Buddhist tradition means insight into the true nature of reality, namely as the Three marks of existence: impermanence, suffering or unsatisfactoriness, and the realisation of non-self.
Vipassanā-meditation is an ancient practice taught by Buddhas, reintroduced by Ledi Sayadaw and Mogok Sayadaw and popularized by Mahasi Sayadaw, S. N. Goenka and the Vipassana movement, in which mindfulness of breathing and of thoughts, feelings and actions are being used to gain insight in the true nature of reality. Due to the popularity of Vipassanā-meditation, the mindfulness of breathing has gained further popularity in the west as mindfulness.

Contemporary Theravada orthodoxy regards samatha as a preparation for vipassanā, pacifying the mind and strengthening the concentration in order to allow the work of insight, which leads to liberation. In contrast, the Vipassana Movement argues that insight levels can be discerned without the need for developing samatha further due to the risks of going out of course when strong samatha is developed.

Vipassanā can be cultivated by the practice that includes contemplation, introspection and observation of bodily sensations, analytic meditation and observations on life experiences like death and decomposition. The practices may differ in the modern Buddhist traditions and non-sectarian groups according to the founder but the main objective is to develop insight.

In the Vipassanā Movement, the emphasis is on the Satipatthana Sutta and the use of mindfulness to gain insight into the impermanence of the self-view."

In this thread instead of focusing on how Vipassana can be used to liberate the individual human mind (through mindfulness/Vipassana meditation), I propose to discuss how insights from Vipassana may be used in the Information Age to help transcend the coming anthropogenically induced global socio-economic collapse, in order to contribute to a more sustainable socio-economic order.

In this regards, Vipassana is an eminently practical practice in that it does not recommend that people (and their consequent socio-economic systems) follow received insights until they are ready to discover (or take responsibility for) such insights for themselves, by applying what I called swimology at the beginning of this post.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on July 27, 2015, 02:01:56 PM
All this tend people to think it is disconnected from the Buddhas posture, I do think it is not a good idea to disconnect the mental component and the practice.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 27, 2015, 04:44:53 PM
All this tend people to think it is disconnected from the Buddhas posture, I do think it is not a good idea to disconnect the mental component and the practice.

Laurent,

I understand (& I concur with) your concern, and I agree that no one should get their meditative guidance from this thread/blog. 

Again, as I stated in my last post I do not intend to discuss the liberation of the individual human mind; rather I plan to discuss how insight of both the brain and the mind can be applied to both artificial intelligence and to structural improvements of our current socio-economic.  It is my belief that AI and socio-economic change are coming rapidly, and it is better to discuss these matters openly, rather than to have 7.3 billion people, and counting, running around with their eyes closed.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on July 27, 2015, 05:45:19 PM
For the moment at least 99,9 % of the 7.3 billion people are running full speed toward a change that they don't want to occur. I appreciate your posts, I thought it was important to precise a bit. Off course we have to discuss it quite strongly about AI and socio-economic.

I am not a master and practice (not regularly, lazy boy) as a non religious, I do not see the practice as a way of liberation but a way of realizing a bit deeper of who I am, trying to let it be...it is impossible to precise simply...

I think it is something that may help a lot of people now and even more in the future, when many will have to face the reality of climate change.

For AI, I hope we will have time for any AI to develop before dramatic changes occur to the planet. Should we fear as humans, well, I don't think so, it will just place us where we are...among animals. Like any intelligent being if they are taught about care of lives that may prevent them to wipe us all...and give us the opportunity to go beyond the boundaries of our planet (don't think it is possible without it)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 05, 2015, 06:36:16 PM
Maybe this post is a bump, and maybe not.

The linked article discusses how the Buddhist state of Bhutan has a carbon neutral footprint and sets a shining example for the rest of the world:

http://www.rtcc.org/2015/08/05/bhutan-climate-lessons-from-a-himalayan-kingdom/ (http://www.rtcc.org/2015/08/05/bhutan-climate-lessons-from-a-himalayan-kingdom/)

I provide this link to illustrate how in the age of the Anthropocene, addressing the mindset of mankind is both important and possible.

With regard to my earlier discussions of AI, it is important to recognize that in the future human intelligence will also be augmented (enhanced), so hopefully we will all be able to do as well as the people of Bhutan do today.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 19, 2015, 08:47:38 PM
For my 5,000th post I feel like briefly elaborating on some of my prior comments about my ideas of how I see our current global socio-economic system possibly adapting to the Anthropocene before the end of this century.
I begin by quoting philosopher Peter Singer that evolution has: "… bequeath(ed) humans with a sense of empathy – an ability to treat other people's interest as comparable to one's own.  Unfortunately, by default we apply it only to a very narrow circle of friends and family.  People outside that circle were treated as subhuman and can be exploited with impunity.  But over history the circle has expanded … form village to the clan to the tribe to the nation to other races to other sexes … and other species."
Next, I re-iterate that in his book the "Descent of Man" Charles Darwin argues that natural selection developed in man:  "… the greater strength of the social or maternal instincts than that of any other instinct or motive."  Darwin reasoned that social instincts such as sympathy, empathy and compassion must be mankind's strongest instincts because compassionate individuals are more successful in raising healthier offspring that can successfully adapt to the ever changing demands of evolutionary pressures.
Unfortunately, Darwin's (scientific) views on human compassion found few adherents in those who provided the philosophical underpinnings of our current Western-based global socio-economic system, as illustrated by the following quotes that skeptically dismiss this compassionate way of thinking:

"A feeling of sympathy is beautiful and amiable; for it shows a charitable interest in the lot of other men … But this good-natured passion is nevertheless weak and always blind." Immanuel Kant.

"If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject." Ayn Rand.

"Hence a prince who wants to keep his authority must learn how not to be good, and use that knowledge, or refrain from using it, as necessity requires." Machiavelli

Unfortunately, too many captains of our modern global socio-economic system associate the feeling of pride in association with strong groups (such as fossil fuel related activities), and associate compassion (Kant's "good-natured passion) with weakness, or with weak groups that are in need of help.  Again, such individuals feel totally justified in their position as Kant states (in "Observations on the Feelings of the Beautiful and Sublime"): "For it is not possible that our heart should swell for from fondness for every man's interest and should swim in sadness at every stranger's need; else the virtuous man, incessantly dissolving like Heraclitus in compassionate tears, nevertheless with all this goodheartedness would become nothing but a tender-hearted idler."

In my opinion what the fundamental challenge in reconciling Darwin's truly scientific observation that natural selection has developed in mankind:  "… the greater strength of the social or maternal instincts than that of any other instinct or motive"; with the pseudo-scientific belief that survival of the fittest thinking is for winners and altruism is for losers is that:

Habituation leads to a decrease in response to a stimulus after repeated exposure; which results in a loss of gratitude for contributions to the greater good.  Habituation is associated not only with cravings and aversions to stimulus but also with the need for greater stimulus from in an entropically uncertain world.  Survival of the fitting type thinking substitutes habituation for true adaption to entropically changing world; while natural selection reward those who truly adapt to such an entropically changing world.

Hopefully, greater use of information theory will allow society to better reflect gratitude for the numerous individual contributions to the greater good.

See also:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d6e_Un6dv8 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5d6e_Un6dv8)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFhcNPjIMjc (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFhcNPjIMjc)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLnAbkdXgCo (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eLnAbkdXgCo)

In my post above I point out that: "Habituation leads to a decrease in response to a stimulus after repeated exposure; which results in a loss of gratitude for contributions to the greater good."

In this post I propose the use of the emotion of awe (particularly in-conjunction with AI, etc.) to over-coming the apathy generated by habituation.  It would be best if people can find a sense of awe by living in the moment; however, in view of the climate change challenge I would settle for people learning to be in awe of the consequences of abrupt climate change this century so that they rally together to fight it, as the world did to fight the Nazi.

The following reference by Piff et al. (2015) shows that the emotion of awe can cause people to cooperate (witness how both religions and politicians strive to invoke awe in their followers).  Therefore, if we want

“Awe, the Small Self, and Prosocial Behavior,” by Paul Piff, PhD, University of California, Irvine; Pia Dietze, BA, New York University; Matthew Feinberg, PhD, University of Toronto; and Daniel Stancato, BA, and Dacher Keltner, University of California, Berkeley. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, published online May 18, 2015, http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/pspi0000018 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1037/pspi0000018)

http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/releases/psp-pspi0000018.pdf (http://www.apa.org/pubs/journals/releases/psp-pspi0000018.pdf)

http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2015/05/altruistic-behavior.aspx (http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2015/05/altruistic-behavior.aspx)
Extract: "WASHINGTON — Inducing a sense of awe in people can promote altruistic, helpful and positive social behavior according to research published by the American Psychological Association.
“Our investigation indicates that awe, although often fleeting and hard to describe, serves a vital social function. By diminishing the emphasis on the individual self, awe may encourage people to forgo strict self-interest to improve the welfare of others,” "

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/24/opinion/sunday/why-do-we-experience-awe.html?_r=0 (http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/24/opinion/sunday/why-do-we-experience-awe.html?_r=0)
Extract: "HERE’S a curious fact about goose bumps. In many nonhuman mammals, goose bumps — that physiological reaction in which the muscles surrounding hair follicles contract — occur when individuals, along with other members of their species, face a threat. We humans, by contrast, can get goose bumps when we experience awe, that often-positive feeling of being in the presence of something vast that transcends our understanding of the world.
Why do humans experience awe? Years ago, one of us, Professor Keltner, argued (along with the psychologist Jonathan Haidt) that awe is the ultimate “collective” emotion, for it motivates people to do things that enhance the greater good. Through many activities that give us goose bumps — collective rituals, celebration, music and dance, religious gatherings and worship — awe might help shift our focus from our narrow self-interest to the interests of the group to which we belong.
Now, recent research of ours, to be published in next month’s issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, provides strong empirical support for this claim. We found that awe helps bind us to others, motivating us to act in collaborative ways that enable strong groups and cohesive communities."



See also:
http://www.psychologicalscience.org/index.php/publications/observer/2015/april-15/all-about-awe.html (http://www.psychologicalscience.org/index.php/publications/observer/2015/april-15/all-about-awe.html)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on August 20, 2015, 07:11:49 AM
I agree with the importance of empathy, and the use of the word "awe." In the latter context, i find the word "awful" interesting as well, if nothing else, for purely linguistic reasons.

I hesitate to mention the following, dont want to derail this thread, but i think i should state:

I would be wary of citing anything by the American Psychological Association. Or any member thereof who has not explicitly disavowed their past practices, and makes public funding sources. It only took them till this month to pass a resolution that stated they wouldn't torture people, and they still haven't censured or decertified known torturers. For those with strong stomachs, the wiki page is a start. APA cooperation with state power goes back a long, long way.

I would rather rely on literature without their imprimatur forawhile.

sidd



Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 21, 2015, 01:59:45 PM
I agree with the importance of empathy, and the use of the word "awe." In the latter context, i find the word "awful" interesting as well, if nothing else, for purely linguistic reasons.

I hesitate to mention the following, dont want to derail this thread, but i think i should state:

I would be wary of citing anything by the American Psychological Association. Or any member thereof who has not explicitly disavowed their past practices, and makes public funding sources. It only took them till this month to pass a resolution that stated they wouldn't torture people, and they still haven't censured or decertified known torturers. For those with strong stomachs, the wiki page is a start. APA cooperation with state power goes back a long, long way.

I would rather rely on literature without their imprimatur forawhile.

sidd


sidd,

You make a good point; however, per Wikipedia the APA is the largest association of psychologists in the world, so it shown not be un-expected to find some good information within their journals:

"The American Psychological Association (APA) is the largest scientific and professional organization of psychologists in the United States. It is the world's largest association of psychologists with around 137,000 members including scientists, educators, clinicians, consultants and students.  The APA has an annual budget of around $115m. There are 54 divisions of the APA—interest groups covering different subspecialties of psychology or topical areas."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Psychological_Association (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Psychological_Association)
(note the linked Wikipedia article above contains a discussion of the torture issue)

However, to specifically address any concerns that you might have about the articles that I posted, the authors follow closely to Paul Ekman's thinking (as he was a direct mentor of many of the authors), and Paul Ekman made the following reassuring statements about torture:

http://www.paulekman.com/tag/paul-ekman/ (http://www.paulekman.com/tag/paul-ekman/)
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/paula-gordon/torture-and-the-psycholog_b_7945910.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/paula-gordon/torture-and-the-psycholog_b_7945910.html)

Extract: "I was approached soon after 9/11 by a senior psychologist, who held office in APA, to participate in the government’s newly developing interrogation program. I declined, although I had already developed techniques for establishing better emotional connections with interviewees, through my work on nonverbal behavior, facial expressions and gestures. And I had done research on what punishments work best on prisoners.
In the late 1950’s when I was drafted into the Army, serving as First Lieutenant and Chief Psychologist at Ft. Dix New Jersey I performed an experiment to evaluate the most effective punishment for AWOL offenses. I was able to match prisoners on a number of variables, randomly assigning half a month in the stockade (the standard punishment up until then) or three hours a day of extra labor but no imprisonment. Recidivism six month later was 60% higher among those who went to the stockade, and based on that finding the Commanding General changed the standard punishment for first AWOL to extra labor but no imprisonment.
Such an experiment cannot be performed now to evaluate the competing advocates of harsh interrogations tantamount to torture and those, like me, advocating humane interviewing. (I did get the chance once to train interrogators at Abu Ghraib, and they reported back that my humane, emotional connection interviews were very successful.) If we can’t run an experiment to find out, and many including me would argue that even conducting such an experiment in which so-called harsh methods were to be used on some of the prisoners violates ethical guidelines, then we must do the right thing, take the ethical path, do what is expected of democracies. Only humane interviewing should be conducted by any member of APA."


See also:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bryant-welch/heroism-defeats-torture-a_b_7990030.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bryant-welch/heroism-defeats-torture-a_b_7990030.html)

&

http://www.ethicalpsychology.org/ (http://www.ethicalpsychology.org/)

That said, it is nevertheless true that many people (e.g. Hitler) use awe for awful purposes; which illustrates the point that any sustainable adaption to the Anthropocene will require not only insight into human behavior but also effort/work to move in the awesome direction rather than the awful direction.

Best regards,
ASLR

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 21, 2015, 04:31:13 PM
One (see Note 1) should realize that the carefully crafted self-image that one has painted in one's mind, & in the minds of one's familiars, is not oneself at all (as indeed there is no self), but rather a constantly changing psychodynamic phenomena that is egotistically trying to take credit for all the hard work & effort that one makes over the course of a lifetime. This egotistical (& fluctuating) self-image tries to exert control of one's psyche by projecting a constantly changing & self-serving ideology; however, one should also realize that ideology without consequences, is the playground of spoiled/egotistical brats.

Thus if society (and the AI [see Note 2] that it is building) is to benefit from insights of its true nature and to learn how to sustainably adapt to the Anthropocene; then it (i.e. it as in an orchestra is a singular noun composed of individuals) must first learn to take responsibility for the consequences of its actions.  However, taking responsibility is a particular change for addressing climate change as everyone from scientists, to average citizens, to politicians, to the power elite; shirk responsibility for their individual actions and instead default to the pabulum of egotistical ideology.

As we live in an increasingly hedonistic global society, and as AI learns more & more about human nature; hopefully, AI will recognize that is in everyone's self-interest (including any self-interest that future AI systems generate) to work together to stay grounded in accountability while building towards a more sustainable future.

Note 1: I use the term "one" here as in the phrase: "… one with everything"
Note 2: By Artificial Intelligence, AI, I mean not only machine generated intelligence but also intelligence generated by machine/human connected systems (you can search for the term "brainlets" in this folder to find discussion of such synergistically connected systems).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 31, 2015, 11:45:04 PM
In the Anthropocene the decision-maker influences all subsequent probabilities of occurrence; which is highly relevant for the linked reference on quantum random walk models (see the attached image for a comparison of Markov random walk models vs quantum random walk models):

Peter D. Kvam, Timothy J. Pleskac, Shuli Yu, and Jerome R. Busemeyer (August 10, 2015), "Interference effects of choice on confidence: Quantum characteristics of evidence accumulation." PNAS, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1500688112

http://www.pnas.org/content/112/34/10645.abstract (http://www.pnas.org/content/112/34/10645.abstract)


Abstract: "Decision-making relies on a process of evidence accumulation which generates support for possible hypotheses. Models of this process derived from classical stochastic theories assume that information accumulates by moving across definite levels of evidence, carving out a single trajectory across these levels over time. In contrast, quantum decision models assume that evidence develops over time in a superposition state analogous to a wavelike pattern and that judgments and decisions are constructed by a measurement process by which a definite state of evidence is created from this indefinite state. This constructive process implies that interference effects should arise when multiple responses (measurements) are elicited over time. We report such an interference effect during a motion direction discrimination task. Decisions during the task interfered with subsequent confidence judgments, resulting in less extreme and more accurate judgments than when no decision was elicited. These results provide qualitative and quantitative support for a quantum random walk model of evidence accumulation over the popular Markov random walk model. We discuss the cognitive and neural implications of modeling evidence accumulation as a quantum dynamic system."

Significance: "Most cognitive and neural decision-making models—owing to their roots in classical probability theory—assume that decisions are read out of a definite state of accumulated evidence. This assumption contradicts the view held by many behavioral scientists that decisions construct rather than reveal beliefs and preferences. We present a quantum random walk model of decision-making that treats judgments and decisions as a constructive measurement process, and we report the results of an experiment showing that making a decision changes subsequent distributions of confidence relative to when no decision is made. This finding provides strong empirical support for a parameter-free prediction of the quantum model."

Caption: "Diagram of a state representation of a Markov and a quantum random walk model. In the Markov model, evidence (shaded state) evolves over time by moving from state to state, occupying one definite evidence level at any given time. In the quantum model the decision-maker is in an indefinite evidence state, with each evidence level having a probability amplitude (shadings) at each point in time. Credit: (c) 2015 PNAS; doi:10.1073/pnas.1500688112"


See also:
http://phys.org/news/2015-08-cognitive-decision-collapse-quantum-superstate.html (http://phys.org/news/2015-08-cognitive-decision-collapse-quantum-superstate.html)

For anyone interested in using a quantum random walk analysis, Wolfram software provides that option:

http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/QuantumRandomWalk/ (http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/QuantumRandomWalk/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 01, 2015, 04:57:52 PM
I note that per the following linked Wikipedia entry, and the associated PDF image, a quantum random walk analysis (which is more appropriate for the anthropocene than a Markov random walk analysis), is more likely to produce a "dragon-tailed" distribution (or its mirror) depending on the actions of the decision makers.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_walk (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_walk)



See also:
http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/QuantumRandomWalk/ (http://demonstrations.wolfram.com/QuantumRandomWalk/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 02, 2015, 04:12:54 PM
This is just a quick post to note that:

(a) Evolutionary software plays an important role in optimizing parameters for pattern recognition in AI software;

(b) Evolutionary software are currently being extended to consider the influence of human emotions as an evolutionary tool, and thus such emotion extended evolutionary software may soon further enhance the development of AI software; and

(c)  As emotions generally underlay human morality, and as the following linked article indicates that the anthropogenic development of moralizing gods likely underpinned the development of complex human societies; it is probable that the development of emotion enhanced AI could facilitate the sustainable development of our world-wide hyper-complex society:

http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/08/feature-why-big-societies-need-big-gods (http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/2015/08/feature-why-big-societies-need-big-gods)

Extract: "To crack the mystery of why and how people around the world came to believe in moralizing gods, researchers are using a novel tool in religious studies: the scientific method. By combining laboratory experiments, cross-cultural fieldwork, and analysis of the historical record, an interdisciplinary team has put forward a hypothesis that has the small community of researchers who study the evolution of religion abuzz. A culture like ancient Egypt didn’t just stumble on the idea of moralizing gods, says psychologist Ara Norenzayan of the University of British Columbia (UBC), Vancouver, in Canada, who synthesized the new idea in his 2013 book Big Gods: How Religion Transformed Cooperation and Conflict. Instead, belief in those judgmental deities, or “big gods,” was key to the cooperation needed to build and sustain Egyptians’ large, complex society."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 03, 2015, 06:42:25 PM
The linked article discusses how Intel estimates that fully functional quantum computing will be practicable in about twelve years.  This will have a major impact on both AI and society:

http://www.pcworld.com/article/2979731/intel-promises-50m-for-quantum-computing-research.html (http://www.pcworld.com/article/2979731/intel-promises-50m-for-quantum-computing-research.html)

Extract: "A fully functioning quantum computer is still twelve years off, according to Intel, but the company is already plowing research funding into the field."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 07, 2015, 05:56:35 PM
The linked article about AI, provides a nice summary of many of the points that I have already made on this topic:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/will-artificial-intelligence-surpass-our-own/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/will-artificial-intelligence-surpass-our-own/)

Extract: "There is no discernible principle that would prevent emergence of an AI that is more intelligent than the average person or even any person alive. Indeed, given the competition among the various organizations capable of designing AI systems—mainly national governments and private corporations—their engineers will design ever smarter machines that outperform opponents, whether human or cyborg, and maximize their own gain. This is likely to involve the ability of machines to self-improve by trial and error and by reprogramming their own code.  What might happen when machines start to boost their own intelligence was first pointed out by mathematician Irving John Good in a memorable passage in 1965:
Let an ultraintelligent machine be defined as a machine that can far surpass all the intellectual activities of any man however clever. Since the design of machines is one of these intellectual activities, an ultraintelligent machine could design even better machines; there would then unquestionably be an “intelligence explosion,” and the intelligence of man would be left far behind…. Thus the first ultraintelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make, provided that the machine is docile enough to tell us how to keep it under control.
Bostrom considers different forms of superintelligence: qualitative ones—say, Albert Einstein versus someone intellectually challenged; collective ones, a team of Einstein-level geniuses; or quantitative ones, such as an intelligence that invents the theory of general relativity within an hour of first thinking about the fundamental nature of spacetime rather than the decade that it took Einstein to develop the theory. For Bostrom's reckoning of existential risks, it doesn't much matter as long as the AI can outthink people. And there might be no warning that the age of machines has arrived, nothing like the sonic boom first heard above California's skies in 1947, when the X-1 plane broke the sound barrier, to herald the birth of a superintelligent AI.



The potential dangers posed by such a machine do not depend on how smart it is but on what its ultimate goals are. Indeed, an AI doesn't even have to be supersmart to be a grave threat to humanity—a narrow AI designed to maximize “return on investments” at all costs in its calculations could trigger a war or some other calamity and thereby rake in untold billions by hedging stocks in the affected industries. Or a narrow military AI connected to our network of nuclear-tipped missiles could unleash a devastating preemptive first strike on the principle that waiting longer would maximize the number of its own citizens dying in nuclear hellfire.



Given humanity's own uncertainty about its final goals—being as happy as possible? Fulfilling the dictum of some holy book so we end up in heaven? Sitting on a mountaintop and humming “Om” through nostrils while being mindful? Colonizing the Milky Way galaxy?—we want to move very deliberately here.



Bostrom is most concerned with what he calls the “control problem,” the challenge of how to engineer superintelligent machines so as to achieve outcomes that are safe and beneficial for humanity. This goal cannot be achieved by simply picking a set of ethical rules and implementing these into specific instructions. Traditionally the job of the political systems and the courts is to enforce such written laws and the unwritten code that governs society. These objectives are often in conflict with each other: the powerful “thou shalt not kill” edict is routinely violated on the battlefield, on death row, in terminating pregnancies and in slaughterhouses.
Of course, as Bostrom caustically remarks, humankind can hardly claim to be basking in the high noon of perfect moral enlightenment. People can't seem to agree on the best rules to live by. Should an ascendant AI follow the U.S. Constitution, rules laid down by the Chinese Communist Party or dictates of the mullahs in Iran?


To constrain what could happen and ensure that humanity retains some modicum of control, we need to better understand the only known form of intelligence. That is, we need to develop a science of intelligence by studying people and their brains to try to deduce what might be the ultimate capabilities and goals of a machine intelligence. What makes a person smart, able to deal with a complex world that is in constant flux? How does intelligence develop throughout infancy, childhood and adolescence? How did intelligence evolve?
How much does intelligence depend on being embedded in social groups? What is the relation between intelligence and emotion and between intelligence and motivation? And what about consciousness? Will it make a difference to the AI's action if it feels something, anything, and if it, too, can experience the sights and sounds of the universe?"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 08, 2015, 05:42:58 PM
As the Anthropocene is all about us it can be difficult for us to see past our own mental constructs to more clearly envision this world circa 2100, where we/ourselves will be required to change/adapt to our coming reality.  Just as today, few cry for the loss of Archaic Homo Sapiens, or his culture; by 2100 no one will be overly concerned about the generally self-inflicted changes that will be naturally selected so that neo-mankind, and our socio-economic systems, can adapt to that coming reality.  While evolution typically takes millennia to accumulate even a few changes to our genic make-up; by 2100 information age technologies including: cyborg & cybernetic technologies, gene therapy and most importantly artificial intelligence; will allow for an acceleration of natural evolution on the decadal scale.

A cyborg can be defined as a cybernetic organism and per Wikipedia: "More broadly, the full term "cybernetic organism" is used to describe larger networks of communication and control. For example, cities, networks of roads, networks of software, corporations, markets, governments, and the collection of these things together. A corporation can be considered as an artificial intelligence that makes use of replaceable human components to function. People at all ranks can be considered replaceable agents of their functionally intelligent government institutions, whether such a view is desirable or not."  Therefore, in the following I will use the term Holoborg instead of "neo-mankind" as any general holographic cybernetic organism (from corporations to cyborgs) and I begin a long-winded discussion of a Holoborg interpretation of the universe by quoting from Musser (2015):

George Musser (September 2015), "Is the Cosmos Random?", Scientific American, Vol. 313, No. 3

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-einstein-really-thought-about-quantum-mechanics/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-einstein-really-thought-about-quantum-mechanics/)

Extract: ""I, at any rate, am convinced that He is not playing at dice."  Albert Einstein wrote to a colleague in 1926.  Repeated over the years, his sound bite became the quintessential put-down of quantum mechanics and its embrace of randomness. 
Close examination, though, reveals that Einstein did not reject quantum mechanics or its indeterminism, although he did think – solid scientific reasons – that the randomness could not be a fundamental feature of nature. 
Today many philosophers argue that physics is both indeterministic and deterministic, depending on the level of reality being considered.
This view dissolves the much debated dilemma between determinism and free will. Even if everything that particles do is preordained, the choices we make can be completely open because the low-level laws governing particles are not the same as the high-level laws governing human consciousness.


To be sure, List's arguments do not explain free will fully.  The hierarchy of levels opens up space for free will by separating psychology from physics and giving us the opportunity to do the unexpected.  But we have to seize the opportunity.  If, for example, we made every decision on a coin toss, that would still count as macroindeterminism but would hardly qualify as free will in any meaningful sense.  Some people's decision making may be so debilitated that they cannot be said to act freely.

This way of thinking about determinism also makes sense of an interpretation of quantum theory that developed in the years after Einstein's death in 1955: the many-worlds interpretation.

"There is not true randomness in the cosmos, but things can appear random in the eye of the beholder," says cosmologist Max Tegmark of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a prominent proponent of this view.  "The randomness reflects your inability to self-locate."
That is very similar to saying that a die or brain could be constructed from any one of countless atomic configurations.  The configurations might be individually deterministic, but because we cannot know which one corresponds to our die or our brain, we have to think of the outcome as indeterministic.  Thus, parallel universes are not some exotic idea out there in the cosmos.  Our body and brain are little multiverses, and it is the multiplicity of possibility that endows us with freedom."

While the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum theory, results in exactly the same mathematical projections as the Many-World's interpretation, it makes use the somewhat arbitrary/mystical concept that quantum wave-functions collapse when observed.  Here it note that when one writes the quantum wave-function equations for the universe there are no terms for time; which offers still an alternate interpretation (call it the Holoborg interpretation) of quantum theory (besides the Copenhagen & Many-World's) that the emergent human interpretation of time is actually a comparison of a smaller subset of the holographic universe to an associated incrementally larger subset of the holographic universe. 
In this Holoborg interpretation, the information contained within, and forming, the universe is created by free will interacting with other free will (rather than free will being an emergent property as in the Many-World's interpretation).  In this interpretation the meaning of life would be to expand one's time horizon until one is "one-with-everything", thereby ending the illusions of time & space and maximizing one's compassion & interconnectedness. Furthermore, the hierarchy of levels creates the illusions of time & space by restricting one's understanding of the whole to a smaller subset of the holographic universe.  While this restriction to a smaller subset offers the advantage of reducing confusion to one that is not prepared to acknowledge the whole, it imposes a master/slave (strong/weak) interpretation on those using the lower level subset of reality as ignorance of the whole causes the master of the subset to impose its worldview (out of ignorance), in much the same why as the cybernetic organisms (cyborgs) of government elite, religious elite, and/or corporate elite impose their wills on the masses in nations, churches and companies.  As per Frederick Douglass: "Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will."  therefore, in the Holoborg interpretation of the universe work is required in life to advance from the tyranny of small decisions associated with lower level subsets into the daylight of a more holistic world.

As a side-note, the holoberg interpretation offers a deeper understanding of the Anthropic Principle (see the following Wikipedia-link):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthropic_principle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthropic_principle)

Extracts: "In astrophysics and cosmology, the anthropic principle (from Greek anthropos, meaning "human") is the philosophical consideration that observations of the physical Universe must be compatible with the conscious and sapient life that observes it. Some proponents of the anthropic principle reason that it explains why the universe has the age and the fundamental physical constants necessary to accommodate conscious life. As a result, they believe it is unremarkable that the universe's fundamental constants happen to fall within the narrow range thought to be compatible with life.
The strong anthropic principle (SAP) as explained by John D. Barrow and Frank Tipler (see variants) states that this is all the case because the universe is compelled, in some sense, to eventually have conscious and sapient life emerge within it. Some critics of the SAP argue in favor of a weak anthropic principle (WAP) similar to the one defined by Brandon Carter, which states that the universe's ostensible fine tuning is the result of selection bias: i.e., only in a universe capable of eventually supporting life will there be living beings capable of observing and reflecting upon any such fine tuning, while a universe less compatible with life will go unbeheld. Most often such arguments draw upon some notion of the multiverse for there to be a statistical population of universes to select from and from which selection bias (our observance of only this universe, apparently compatible with life) could occur.

A common criticism of Carter's SAP is that it is an easy deus ex machina which discourages searches for physical explanations. To quote Penrose again: "it tends to be invoked by theorists whenever they do not have a good enough theory to explain the observed facts." "

Also see:
http://abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/cosmo/lectures/lec24.html (http://abyss.uoregon.edu/~js/cosmo/lectures/lec24.html)


Base on physicist Max Tegmark's Many-World's interpretation "Consciousness as a mathematical pattern"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzCvlFRISIM (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GzCvlFRISIM)

So by Tegmark's Many-World's view, consciousness is an emergent phenomenon based on patterns just as wetness is emergent from the patterns of liquid particles.  However, per the Holoborg interpretation, consciousness is an emergent phenomenon based on the interaction of free will in a timeless holographic universe.

To gain a better understanding of a holographic universe, see the following Wikipedia link to an article on the Holographic Principle:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_principle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_principle)

Extract: "The holographic principle is a property of string theories and a supposed property of quantum gravity that states that the description of a volume of space can be thought of as encoded on a boundary to the region—preferably a light-like boundary like a gravitational horizon. First proposed by Gerard 't Hooft, it was given a precise string-theory interpretation by Leonard Susskind who combined his ideas with previous ones of 't Hooft and Charles Thorn. As pointed out by Raphael Bousso, Thorn observed in 1978 that string theory admits a lower-dimensional description in which gravity emerges from it in what would now be called a holographic way.
In a larger sense, the theory suggests that the entire universe can be seen as a two-dimensional information on the cosmological horizon, such that the three dimensions we observe are an effective description only at macroscopic scales and at low energies. Cosmological holography has not been made mathematically precise, partly because the particle horizon has a non-zero area and grows with time."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: ivica on September 08, 2015, 08:17:45 PM
So much hypes under links there... We don't know what inteligence is, or what free will is ... what we do know the best is pretty much only how to destroy something ;)
Amount of knowledge needed for destruction if compared with oposite is pathetically miserably small.

About multy-verse & many-verse - I recomend view maintained at Not even wrong (http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=7983).
Quote
The cosmological multiverse and the QM many-worlds multiverse are two completely different things. In both cases the “universes” are part of a larger structure. In the many-worlds case there is one overall state space, with different subsectors that “decohere”, so can effectively be treated as independent. In the cosmological case, there is one space-time manifold, with different “bubble universes” which are causally independent.
Back to technology, with whatever we came/come up - there are no 'spooky' things - just local, realistic & deterministic stuff.

How about it: "Macroscopic Observability of Spinorial Sign Changes under 2π Rotations", read at Springer (paywaled) (http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10773-014-2412-2) or at arxiv (http://arxiv.org/pdf/1211.0784.pdf).
Why is the 'technic' which oponents use against Joy Christian (http://libertesphilosophica.info/blog/disproof-of-bells-theorem-book/) so similar with the 'technic' of climate change deniers?!

How about expelling mystics from natural science (& social positions of authority)?!
"Observe, measure, analyze" is not what they are doing.

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 08, 2015, 10:09:18 PM
So much hypes under links there... We don't know what inteligence is, or what free will is ... what we do know the best is pretty much only how to destroy something ;)
Amount of knowledge needed for destruction if compared with oposite is pathetically miserably small.

About multy-verse & many-verse - I recomend view maintained at Not even wrong (http://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=7983).
Quote
The cosmological multiverse and the QM many-worlds multiverse are two completely different things. In both cases the “universes” are part of a larger structure. In the many-worlds case there is one overall state space, with different subsectors that “decohere”, so can effectively be treated as independent. In the cosmological case, there is one space-time manifold, with different “bubble universes” which are causally independent.
Back to technology, with whatever we came/come up - there are no 'spooky' things - just local, realistic & deterministic stuff.

How about it: "Macroscopic Observability of Spinorial Sign Changes under 2π Rotations", read at Springer (paywaled) (http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10773-014-2412-2) or at arxiv (http://arxiv.org/pdf/1211.0784.pdf).
Why is the 'technic' which oponents use against Joy Christian (http://libertesphilosophica.info/blog/disproof-of-bells-theorem-book/) so similar with the 'technic' of climate change deniers?!

How about expelling mystics from natural science (& social positions of authority)?!
"Observe, measure, analyze" is not what they are doing.

Good point that it is easier to destroy than to create. 

Nevertheless, by 2100 AI should be sufficient advanced that it will be able to process & replicate information quickly enough that many of the old capitalistic based socio-economic rules will no longer apply.  And regarding the quantum mechanics discussion, just ask yourself how a quantum computer-based AI system will view reality (as deterministic or indeterministic).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: ivica on September 08, 2015, 10:27:14 PM
2100 AI developed under what mindset ? If that one is what we have now then AI of 2100 can be only a sophisticated tool of destruction.

"...a quantum computer-based"...
We have no such stuff (hypes searching for funds aside), and I doubt we will ever have because that implies something 'spooky' inside.
Please see work of JC, link given above, if that is right - and that seems ok to me - then there is no entaglement, physics is again local, realistic and deterministic i.e. Einstein was right.

The best,
--ivica
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 09, 2015, 01:07:03 AM
Alibaba Group’s AliCloud has recently announced recent breakthroughs in AI & have recently set up a Quantum Computing Laboratory with the Chinese Academy of Sciences.  Thus the reality of quantum computer-based AI may be closer that many people think:

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/alicloud-launches-new-energy-efficient-qiandao-lake-data-center-2015-09-08 (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/alicloud-launches-new-energy-efficient-qiandao-lake-data-center-2015-09-08)

Extract: "AliCloud recently announced breakthroughs in artificial intelligence with DTPAI and recently set up a Quantum Computing Laboratory with the Chinese Academy of Sciences."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: TerryM on September 09, 2015, 02:42:44 AM

How about expelling mystics from natural science (& social positions of authority)?!



Ramen


Terry
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: ivica on September 09, 2015, 11:11:57 AM
Quote
Alibaba Group’s AliCloud has recently announced recent breakthroughs in AI & have recently set up a Quantum Computing Laboratory with the Chinese Academy of Sciences...
Yes, we have labs - for nuclear fusion (https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,162.msg53474.html#msg53474) also, for a long time already.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 09, 2015, 06:56:58 PM
The linked (see the first three links) document indicates that past evolution was not a strictly linear process that most people imagine, but includes lateral transfers of information, and in the future we should consider that this non-linear changes will become increasingly important to future evolution; including moving from natural selection to intelligent direction (both by humans & AI) as discussed by the fourth linked article (about J. Craig Venter).

http://www.uncommondescent.com/evolution/seeing-past-darwin-to-a-plausible-history-of-life/ (http://www.uncommondescent.com/evolution/seeing-past-darwin-to-a-plausible-history-of-life/)
http://jamesabarham.com/my-blog/40-seeing-past-darwin-vii-some-physical-properties-of-life (http://jamesabarham.com/my-blog/40-seeing-past-darwin-vii-some-physical-properties-of-life)


See also:
http://www.evolutionnews.org/2015/09/life_forms_cont099151.html (http://www.evolutionnews.org/2015/09/life_forms_cont099151.html)

Extract: "One motif recurs: Darwinian evolution -- which most lay hearers assume to be "evolution" period -- assumes that evolution is vertical: Organisms take their form from genes inherited with slight modifications from their ancestors through their parents. And these slight changes add up gradually over time to immense and profound changes.
Non-Darwinian biology studies mechanisms for evolution that don't really work that way, including horizontal gene transfer and epigenetic change."



http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/craig-venter-evolution-control_55e9ce7fe4b093be51bb5bb3 (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/craig-venter-evolution-control_55e9ce7fe4b093be51bb5bb3)

Extract: "You have said that humankind is entering a “new phase of evolution” -- from natural selection to intelligent direction. Why is this so, and what does it mean?
Biological evolution has taken three and a half or four billion years to get us where we are. Social evolution has been much faster. Now that we can read and write the genetic code, put it in digital form and translate it back into synthesized life, it will be possible to speed up biological evolution to the pace of social evolution."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 22, 2015, 12:55:46 PM
The linked article shows that AI is making steady progress towards exceeding human intelligence within a couple of decades.

http://www.slashgear.com/ai-passes-math-sat-like-an-average-high-school-student-22405753/ (http://www.slashgear.com/ai-passes-math-sat-like-an-average-high-school-student-22405753/)

Extract: "An artificial intelligence from the University of Washington named GeoS, short for geometry problem solver, has just answered 49 percent of a high-school geometry test correctly. While that might not actually be an impressive number at face value, it is actually on par with the average performance of human students taking the exam. And while it might not sound all that impressive from a sci-fi doomsday perspective, considering computers should be great at math after all, it is actually a small but significant step forward in the field of artificial intelligence.
Given the nature of computers, you'd think that they'd ace the exam, but the key difference here is that the AI wasn't given problems in a text or binary format that it easily understood. Put it simply, if you gave it a ready made formula to solve, it would have gotten a perfect score. GeoS, however, was fed the exact same exam questions human students are given. And that means, it first had to be able to actually understand the diagrams and text printed on a paper."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on September 22, 2015, 03:15:11 PM
ivica, thanks for re-minding me of Joy Christian. Last time I cared about QM I was reading Rovelli's multi-observer resolution of the EPR paradox. But it seems nobody cares about Rovelli's QM?

---------------------
On AI: Methinks this is and remains hype. And I just care because methinks it's a paradigmatic symptom of the late Sapiens' fatal madness: Cartesian schizophrenia, viewing the world as a machine.

But there's a fundamental, not yet fully understood difference between machine and organism.

My "theory" is: If you want true AI, you need a "machine" beyond the Turing machine concept. You need an organism. To simulate a brain you have to build a brain, i.e. "wetware".

Thus we can just forget about it and better focus on our own brain.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 24, 2015, 12:58:00 PM
The linked Scientific American article indicates that by focusing on a Big Data approach the EU's Human Brain Project (HBP) may accidentally make the HBP a perfect complement to the US BRAIN Initiative, thus potentially accelerating the development of advanced AI:

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/why-the-human-brain-project-went-wrong-and-how-to-fix-it/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/why-the-human-brain-project-went-wrong-and-how-to-fix-it/)

Extract: "Concentrating on Big Data, a core part of Markram's vision from the start, might even make Europe's HBP a perfect complement to the U.S.'s BRAIN Initiative, whose new technologies are expected to generate huge volumes of neurological data. If the HBP scales down to its technological core—developing useful computational tools and models for neurological research, as mundane as that may sound—then Henry Markram may well leave a great and lasting legacy to neuroscience."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 27, 2015, 04:28:30 PM
The linked article discusses new human genome editing technology that may be just the "tip of the iceberg" in the development of new techniques that may soon allow for extensive modification of the human genome (and consequently of future holoborgs [see Reply #62]):

http://www.designntrend.com/articles/61617/20150927/scientists-found-new-way-edit-human-genome.htm (http://www.designntrend.com/articles/61617/20150927/scientists-found-new-way-edit-human-genome.htm)

Extract: "CRISPR sequences are a part of primordial immune systems, found in some 40 percent of bacteria and 90 percent of archaea. In the latest study Feng Zhang and colleagues searched through bacterial genomes to find different versions of Cpf1. They found two, from Acidominococcus and Lachnospiraceae, that can snip DNA when scientists insert them into human cells.
"There are definitely many more defense systems out there, and maybe some of them might even have spectacular applications like with the Cas9 system," says John van der Oost, a microbiologist at Wageningen University who is a co-author on the paper. "We have the feeling it's just the tip of the iceberg.""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 28, 2015, 09:35:13 PM
The linked article focuses on NASA's/GOOGLE's new D-Wave quantum computer; which among other things will be used for AI research (particularly optimization of pattern recognition).  The link includes a nice video focused on quantum computing and the new D-Wave computer:

http://www.popsci.com/google-and-nasa-score-new-quantum-computer (http://www.popsci.com/google-and-nasa-score-new-quantum-computer)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 08, 2015, 08:45:22 PM
The linked article indicates that the AI company, Vicarious, may be trying to develop human level AI within 10-years (i.e. by 2025):

http://www.techinsider.io/mysterious-artificial-intelligence-company-elon-musk-investment-2015-10 (http://www.techinsider.io/mysterious-artificial-intelligence-company-elon-musk-investment-2015-10)

Extract: ""We're fortunate to have the freedom to take a 10-plus-year time horizon," Phoenix told Bloomberg.
Most researchers think building a human-level AI will likely take longer than one decade. Philosopher Nick Bostrom surveyed 550 AI researchers to gauge when they think human-level AI would be possible. The researchers responded that there is a 50% chance that it will be possible between 2040 and 2050, and a 90% chance that it will be built by 2075.
While Vicarious isn't forthcoming about their timeline, they want to build human-level AI as soon as possible. They're doing this by building an AI that emulates how the brain works — specifically the neocortex, the area of that brain that's responsible for perception and information processing, and they're making incremental progress."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 11, 2015, 05:00:49 PM
Do they want to simulate real neurons? Or is it just another mathematical "neural network", "perceptron", ...?
If they think to have it in 10y they must have some new technological/theoretical ace in the hole.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 12, 2015, 01:49:32 AM
Do they want to simulate real neurons? Or is it just another mathematical "neural network", "perceptron", ...?
If they think to have it in 10y they must have some new technological/theoretical ace in the hole.

As indicated by the linked article, the neurons are digital, and has already been achieved for rat neurons:

H. Markram, et al. (2015), "Reconstruction and Simulation of Neocortical Microcircuitry", Cell,
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2015.09.029 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2015.09.029)


http://www.cell.com/cell/abstract/S0092-8674(15)01191-5 (http://www.cell.com/cell/abstract/S0092-8674(15)01191-5)

Summary: "We present a first-draft digital reconstruction of the microcircuitry of somatosensory cortex of juvenile rat. The reconstruction uses cellular and synaptic organizing principles to algorithmically reconstruct detailed anatomy and physiology from sparse experimental data. An objective anatomical method defines a neocortical volume of 0.29 ± 0.01 mm3 containing ∼31,000 neurons, and patch-clamp studies identify 55 layer-specific morphological and 207 morpho-electrical neuron subtypes. When digitally reconstructed neurons are positioned in the volume and synapse formation is restricted to biological bouton densities and numbers of synapses per connection, their overlapping arbors form ∼8 million connections with ∼37 million synapses. Simulations reproduce an array of in vitro and in vivo experiments without parameter tuning. Additionally, we find a spectrum of network states with a sharp transition from synchronous to asynchronous activity, modulated by physiological mechanisms. The spectrum of network states, dynamically reconfigured around this transition, supports diverse information processing strategies."


See also:
http://news.discovery.com/tech/biotechnology/detailed-digital-rat-brain-shows-individual-neurons-151011 (http://news.discovery.com/tech/biotechnology/detailed-digital-rat-brain-shows-individual-neurons-151011)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 12, 2015, 03:04:41 AM
I haven't looked into Markram's project. Sounds like a fascinating and reasonable ansatz. Kind of zooming in to ever more detail in a flexible model. I'd like to know more about the maths behind this. The results of the rough model seem to show that this works, e.g. exhibiting brain waves.  But then, this project is controversial:
http://news.sciencemag.org/brain-behavior/2014/07/updated-european-neuroscientists-revolt-against-e-u-s-human-brain-project (http://news.sciencemag.org/brain-behavior/2014/07/updated-european-neuroscientists-revolt-against-e-u-s-human-brain-project)

It's 10 years back that I had some chats with a neuroscientist, who gave a completely different perspective: "Single-neuron consciousness" http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16083912 (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16083912)
From what Sevush told, my impression is: A neuron is a hugely complex thing, a piezo-electrico chemico vibrato orchestra with 50000 violins. I haven't yet heard of anybody simulating one in complete detail. (And then: connect millions of them!)

But then, perhaps Markram is right and its the network as a whole, not the individual nodes that count.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on October 12, 2015, 11:50:52 AM
A video of the project (blue one) :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=146&v=IL08fnRCb0k (https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=146&v=IL08fnRCb0k)

An other project :
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2HHJfovb5E (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g2HHJfovb5E)

From a French language article (swiss) :
http://www.letemps.ch/sciences/2015/10/08/chercheurs-ont-reconstruit-simule-un-morceau-cerveau-ordinateur (http://www.letemps.ch/sciences/2015/10/08/chercheurs-ont-reconstruit-simule-un-morceau-cerveau-ordinateur)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 14, 2015, 07:45:01 PM
Information Theory, IT, is all about signal/pattern recognition and its theoretical underpinnings are such that even the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle is a subset of Entropic Uncertainty as defined by IT. Earlier in this thread I discussed uncertainty with regards to the Scientific Method as well as the Bayesian approach.  In prior posts in this thread I discussed the nature of uncertainty with regards to indeterministic (e. g. quantum theory) vs deterministic (e. g. relativity) scientific theory and the Copenhagen Intrepretation, the Many Worlds Interpretation and my Holoborg  Interpretation, where the information (& uncertainties) contained within, and forming, the universe is created by free will interacting with other free will (rather than free will being an emergent property as in the Copenhagen & the Many-World's interpretations).  Obviously, free will is a fundamental consideration for philosophy and also in earlier posts I touched upon the role of uncertainty as discussed by C.D. Broad (1925), in "The Mind and its Place in Nature", New York: Harcourt, Brace & Company, Inc. as summarized by the following quote:

"The speculative philosopher and the scientific specialist are liable to two opposite mistakes. The former tends to deliver frontal attacks on Reality as a whole, armed only with a few wide general principles, and to neglect to isolate and master in detail particular problems. The latter tends to forget that he has violently abstracted one part or one aspect of Reality from the rest, and to imagine that the success which this abstraction has given him within a limited field justifies him in taking the principles which hold therein as the whole truth about the whole world. The one cannot see the trees for the wood, and the other cannot see the wood for the trees. The result of both kinds of mistake is the same, viz., to produce philosophical theories which may be self-consistent but which must be described as "silly". By a "silly" theory I mean one which may be held at the time when one is talking or writing professionally, but which only an inmate of a lunatic asylum would think of carrying into daily life."

C. D. Board is talking about induction & deduction address uncertainty differently when considered as a subset of IT's entropic uncertainty.  However, as humans generally do not relate well to IT (while the coming AI generally will); I provide the following alternate names for this IT dichotomy:

(a) Speculative philosopher vs scientific specialist; (b) Yin vs Yang: (c) indeterministic vs deterministic; (d) Climate Dads vs Climate Cads; (e) Natural Section vs Survival of the Fittest; (f) Love is lyrical while Lust is lewd; (g) "one-with-everything" vs Tyranny of the small decision, (h) liberal vs conservative, and (i) ignorance is suffering vs ignorance is bliss.

Taking this dichotomy as a fundamental aspect of IT's approach to addressing uncertainty in signal/pattern recognition, in the Holoberg Interpretation this dichotomy can be as two sides of the same coin, with the balance point between these two aspects oscillating in manners depending on the boundary conditions, starting conditions and the nature of the system in consideration.  As C. D. Broad was a speculative philosopher (rather than a scientific specialist), he was focused on improving philosophy; however, today we live increasingly in the information age with the balance point shifted well in the scientific specialist direction.  Therefore, in the remainder of this post I speculate on the implications our information age shifting so far towards scientific specialism/Yang/deterministic thought/climate cads/survival of the fittest thinking etc. and what one may expect when the pendulum swings in the other direction.

First, I speculate that our current curated modern global socio-economic system is becoming increasingly out-of-balance to the extent that some sort of severe socio-economic disruption will likely occur throughout much of the world (in varying extents) in the 2040 to 2047 timeframe.  In this potential period of severe disruption, I further speculate that the Yin side (the meek) will seek refuge from the conflicts, while the Yang side will seek refuge in ever more advanced technology.

Following 2047, I expect the Yin (meek) side to adopt a "small-is-beautiful" approach for the majority of people surviving the period of severe disruption; while I expect the Yang side to be reserved for the top remaining elite, who I expect to use AI, robotic and biological technologies to live cyborg-like existences with extended life spans.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 16, 2015, 10:15:09 PM
When our civilization breaks and gets liquidated, will there be resources left for fancy technology (not survival-relelevant)?

I.e. 1) human and 2) technological resources.
E.g. 1) I for one would find it more effective to produce my food directly, and just say KMA to computer industry (heck, I'm almost doing this at present...)
E.g. 2) Computer industry is a world-wide fragile network. It is already happening that local natural disaters (like, flooding Bangkok) lead to bottle necks in global industrial production (like, no more of these special capacitors). Perhaps the U.S. military is wise enough to allocate a complete production resource inland, so they can continue building computers - for some time.

So, methinks if real collapse comes as early as 2040, then forget all AI dreams. Better dream of your Little House on the Prairie.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 16, 2015, 10:24:28 PM
When our civilization breaks and gets liquidated, will there be resources left for fancy technology (not survival-relelevant)?

I.e. 1) human and 2) technological resources.
E.g. 1) I for one would find it more effective to produce my food directly, and just say KMA to computer industry (heck, I'm almost doing this at present...)
E.g. 2) Computer industry is a world-wide fragile network. It is already happening that local natural disaters (like, flooding Bangkok) lead to bottle necks in global industrial production (like, no more of these special capacitors). Perhaps the U.S. military is wise enough to allocate a complete production resource inland, so they can continue building computers - for some time.

So, methinks if real collapse comes as early as 2040, then forget all AI dreams. Better dream of your Little House on the Prairie.

Martin,

When I said:

"Following 2047, I expect the Yin (meek) side to adopt a "small-is-beautiful" approach for the majority of people surviving the period of severe disruption; while I expect the Yang side to be reserved for the top remaining elite, who I expect to use AI, robotic and biological technologies to live cyborg-like existences with extended life spans."

Perhaps, I should have been more specific.  After 2047 there might be no more that 3 Billion people left and it is possible that only the 1% will be living the AI (high tech) dream, leaving the other 99% to live a Little House on the Prairie existence.  So effectively, I have no argument with your logic.

Best,
ASLR

Edit: See the film "Elysium" for one artistic example of what I am talking about (except that the majority of people in the movie are living more of a slum existence than a Little House on the Prairie existence):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elysium_(film)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 17, 2015, 12:56:42 AM
Per the linked article MIT has developed an AI system that out performs human intuition for big data analysis:

http://siliconangle.com/blog/2015/10/16/mit-developing-a-system-that-replaces-human-intuition-for-big-data-analysis/ (http://siliconangle.com/blog/2015/10/16/mit-developing-a-system-that-replaces-human-intuition-for-big-data-analysis/)

Extract: "Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) are looking to take human intuition out of big data analysis by letting computers choose the feature set used to identify predictive patterns in the data. This effort is called “Data Science Machine” and so far the prototype of this software has beaten 615 of 908 teams competing for the same capability (across three data science competitions).

Big Data represents a huge, complex ecosystem that brings together innovative processes from across the spectrum of data analysis, storage, networking, curation, search, and many other processes and functions. Much of big data analysis is automated and algorithmic, but in the end data scientists and business users are needed to determine what features of the analysis and data sets are needed for end visualization to communicate that data and make it actionable."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 22, 2015, 03:25:32 PM
When our civilization breaks and gets liquidated, will there be resources left for fancy technology (not survival-relelevant)?

I.e. 1) human and 2) technological resources.
E.g. 1) I for one would find it more effective to produce my food directly, and just say KMA to computer industry (heck, I'm almost doing this at present...)
E.g. 2) Computer industry is a world-wide fragile network. It is already happening that local natural disaters (like, flooding Bangkok) lead to bottle necks in global industrial production (like, no more of these special capacitors). Perhaps the U.S. military is wise enough to allocate a complete production resource inland, so they can continue building computers - for some time.

So, methinks if real collapse comes as early as 2040, then forget all AI dreams. Better dream of your Little House on the Prairie.

Martin,

When I said:

"Following 2047, I expect the Yin (meek) side to adopt a "small-is-beautiful" approach for the majority of people surviving the period of severe disruption; while I expect the Yang side to be reserved for the top remaining elite, who I expect to use AI, robotic and biological technologies to live cyborg-like existences with extended life spans."

Perhaps, I should have been more specific.  After 2047 there might be no more that 3 Billion people left and it is possible that only the 1% will be living the AI (high tech) dream, leaving the other 99% to live a Little House on the Prairie existence.  So effectively, I have no argument with your logic.

Best,
ASLR

Edit: See the film "Elysium" for one artistic example of what I am talking about (except that the majority of people in the movie are living more of a slum existence than a Little House on the Prairie existence):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elysium_(film) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elysium_(film))
The Elysium film scenario (high tech safe harbour for the 1%) is exactly what I find highly implausible and have tried to argue against. And I find such dreams outrageous -- the paradigm of having-lost-touch-with-Earth.

The authors of the Ecomodernist Manifesto (*) seem to dream this dream. It is quite obviously surreal and non-adaptive. Dream business as usual which we can no longer afford.

Before there will be sufficient technology to control the 99% the problem will arise how to feed them. It does arise already (e.g. Ethiopia again). The 99% will not go hungry peacefully (e.g. Arab spring, Syria).

As long as civilization cannot get off its track of agricultural suicide (paradigms: Syria, Darfur today, fertile crescent in antiquity, etc. etc.!) there will be no high tech heavenly abode. This is just a secular continuation of the psychotic dream of transcendent eternal life, with high tech replacing god and Jeebus nowadays. Gaia desperately tries to teach us that this does not work.

The European refugee crisis is a teaching moment. Turn Germany into Elysium be re-erecting The Wall?

----
Sorry for sometimes sounding harsh and irate. Don't take it personally :-) What I fight is ideas, not bodies.
Best,
  Martin

-----------------------------
(*) http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2015/oct/20/the-brave-new-world-of-ecomodernism (http://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2015/oct/20/the-brave-new-world-of-ecomodernism)
For a related mindest, see Neil DeGrasse Tyson's (no less!) anti-Malthusian optimism, with devastating critique by commenter jimbills, here: http://climatecrocks.com/2015/10/21/can-neil-degrasse-tyson-bring-reason-to-late-night/ (http://climatecrocks.com/2015/10/21/can-neil-degrasse-tyson-bring-reason-to-late-night/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 22, 2015, 05:50:36 PM
Martin,

I suspect that we will continue talking past each other, as you seem to be locked into a Western mindset, while I am endeavoring to translate a more Eastern (Buddha's) mindset into Western terms.  For example Western thinking limits AI to machines; however, the Buddha taught that one's sense of self is an artificial construct (or AI) of a biological mind, and that one's free will (i.e. no soul, no me, no my) can allow one to transcend the constraints of such artificial constructs to become one with everything (or the holographic universe in my Holoborg interpretation of the theory of everything).  In this sense nirvana (nibbana) is achieved when one transcends artificial (biological or machine) intelligence to be connected to a universal super mind.  In this sense Western thought is locked into using logic alone to escape suffering (say by mimicking the 1%); while Eastern thought indicates that one can escape suffering by abandoning mental constructs and ego (indeed transcending time & space), so that in the future the 99% living a "small-is-beautiful" life have a better chance of escaping suffering than the 1% who may become dependent on high technology to temporarily avoid suffering.

In this sense perhaps "The Matrix" is a better movie example than "Elysium", as in The Matrix the mind control by the machines is an analogy to the human fetishes created by our own biological AI; and in Neo's artistic fight against the machine intelligence he must first over-come his own mental constraints.  Furthermore, the post-collapse world that I envision, there will be centuries of time where the 1% will not act transnationally but will be limited to more local actives due to the extent of the collapse.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 22, 2015, 06:23:17 PM
Martin,

I suspect that we will continue talking past each other, as you seem to be locked into a Western mindset, while I am endeavoring to translate a more Eastern (Buddha's) mindset into Western terms. 
Great! I'm actually also a great fan of Mr. B. (originally inspired by Stephen and Martine Batchelor)
Problem is to flesh out his original thinking, which is already buried under lots of flowers in the Pali canon. His 5 aggregate theory is already quite dangerous. It can lead to mechanistic reductionist thinking, into the same trap as Descartes has led the western mind. E.g. methinks the Abhidamma gets quite Western style metaphysics and far beyond what the Buddha taught.

E.g.: The simile of the chariot and its parts appears several times: E.g. the Vajira Sutta in Samyutta Nikaya SN 5.10, and in the Milindapanha MP 25-28. This is plain reductionist mechanistic thinking.

I contend that there's a decisive difference between mechanism and organism (following theoretical biologist Robert Rosen. Alas his theory layd out in the book "Life Itself" is not mathematically rigorous, and remains enigmatic).

Gotta run now...
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 22, 2015, 07:59:28 PM
Martin,

I suspect that we will continue talking past each other, as you seem to be locked into a Western mindset, while I am endeavoring to translate a more Eastern (Buddha's) mindset into Western terms. 
Great! I'm actually also a great fan of Mr. B. (originally inspired by Stephen and Martine Batchelor)
Problem is to flesh out his original thinking, which is already buried under lots of flowers in the Pali canon. His 5 aggregate theory is already quite dangerous. It can lead to mechanistic reductionist thinking, into the same trap as Descartes has led the western mind. E.g. methinks the Abhidamma gets quite Western style metaphysics and far beyond what the Buddha taught.

E.g.: The simile of the chariot and its parts appears several times: E.g. the Vajira Sutta in Samyutta Nikaya SN 5.10, and in the Milindapanha MP 25-28. This is plain reductionist mechanistic thinking.

I contend that there's a decisive difference between mechanism and organism (following theoretical biologist Robert Rosen. Alas his theory layd out in the book "Life Itself" is not mathematically rigorous, and remains enigmatic).

Gotta run now...

I find that the Satipatthana Sutta and the use of mindfulness to gain insight into the impermanence of the self-point-of-view, is helpful when trying to get to a quicker understanding of the Buddha's thinking (i.e. getting past the flowery Pali Cannon). As an introduction to the Satipatthana Sutta I provide the following link & extract:


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satipatthana_Sutta (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Satipatthana_Sutta)

Extract: "The Satipaṭṭhāna Sutta (… The Discourse on the Establishing of Mindfulness) and the Mahāsatipaṭṭhāna Sutta (The Great Discourse on the Establishing of Mindfulness) are two of the most important and widely studied discourses in the Pali Canon of Theravada Buddhism, acting as the foundation for Buddhist mindfulness meditation practice.

These discourses (Pāli: sutta) provide a means for practicing mindfulness in a variety of contexts and potentially continuously. Famously, the Buddha declares at the beginning of this discourse:
"This is the direct way [Pāli: ekāyano ... maggo], monks, for the purification of beings, for the overcoming of sorrow and lamentation, for the extinguishing of suffering and grief, for walking on the path of truth, for the realization of nibbāna...." (Vipassana Research Institute, 1996, pp. 2, 3.)

In this sutta, the Buddha identifies four references for establishing mindfulness (satipatthana): body, sensations (or feelings), mind (or consciousness) and mental contents. These are then further broken down into the following sections and subsections:
1.   Body (Kāyā)
o   Breathing (also see the Anapanasati Sutta)
o   Postures (Walking, Standing, Sitting, Lying Down)
o   Clear Comprehending
o   Reflections on Repulsiveness of the Body
o   Reflections on Material Elements
o   Cemetery Contemplations
2.   Sensations/Feelings (Vedanā)
o   pleasant or unpleasant or neither-pleasant-nor-unpleasant (neutral) feelings
o   worldly or spiritual feelings
3.   Mind/Consciousness (Cittā)
o   lust (sarāgaṃ) or without lust (vītarāgaṃ)
o   hate (sadosaṃ) or without hate (vītadosaṃ)
o   delusion (samohaṃ) or without delusion (vītamohaṃ)
o   contracted (saṅkhittaṃ) or scattered (vikkhittaṃ)
o   lofty (mahaggataṃ) or not lofty (amahaggataṃ)
o   surpassable (sa-uttaraṃ) or unsurpassed (anuttaraṃ)
o   quieted (samāhitaṃ) or not quieted (asamāhitaṃ)
o   released (vimuttaṃ) or not released (avimuttaṃ)
4.   Mental Contents (Dhammā)
o   The Hindrances
o   The Aggregates of Clinging
o   The Sense-Bases and their Fetters
o   The Factors of Enlightenment
o   The Four Noble Truths

To be sure, this approach is focused on individual purification rather than on socio-economic systems, and the associated impacts of climate change; but with the proper understanding it provides invaluable insights.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 22, 2015, 08:05:21 PM
As a follow-on to my last post also see the following Wikipedia extra including the final paragraph about the Vipassan-movement's position that meditators must transcend the jhana state:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhy%C4%81na_in_Buddhism (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhy%C4%81na_in_Buddhism)

Extract: "According to the Theravada-tradition, the meditator uses the jhāna state to bring the mind to rest, and to strengthen and sharpen the mind, in order to investigate the true nature of phenomena (dhamma) and to gain insight into impermanence, suffering and not-self.
According to the sutta descriptions of jhāna practice, the meditator does not emerge from jhāna to practice vipassana but rather the work of insight is done whilst in jhāna itself. In particular the meditator is instructed to "enter and remain in the fourth jhāna" before commencing the work of insight in order to uproot the mental defilements.
According to the later Theravāda commentorial tradition as outlined by Buddhagoṣa in his Visuddhimagga, after coming out of the state of jhāna the meditator will be in the state of post-jhāna access concentration. In this state the investigation and analysis of the true nature of phenomena begins, which leads to insight into the characteristics of impermanence, suffering and not-self arises.
According to the contemporary Vipassana-movement, the jhāna state cannot by itself lead to enlightenment as it only suppresses the defilements. Meditators must use the jhāna state as an instrument for developing wisdom by cultivating insight, and use it to penetrate the true nature of phenomena through direct cognition, which will lead to cutting off the defilements and nibbana."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on October 22, 2015, 10:07:20 PM
Back from my daily walking meditation in the forest. Had a glimpse of Indra's net: Pearls of resin on felled tree trunk shimmering in the light of my head lamp. I'm not much into investigative meditation. I let the mind monkeys run empty and then see if a new monkey shows up. (Yesterday it was a crazy new proof of a variant of the Clairault-Schwarz theorem.)

Now, what I said above is stuff I've been thinking of last winter. I tend to forget stuff. Even my own ideas.

The "materialist reductionism" I had "diagnosed" in (some) Buddhism actually makes sense when turned around: It is a reductio ad absurdum tool. An anti-metaphysics tool to destroy views. What Nagarjuna intended with Madhyamaka, countering Abhidhamma, methinks. But he also has a problem with circular causation - an essential mark of Life.

The difference between organism and mechanism is this circular causality thing. Robert Rosen defines an organism to be "a material system that is closed to efficient causation". That is, not only a "machine that winds up its own springs" (Julien Offray de la Mettrie (1709-1751), "L'Homme Machine" 1748). More, it also manufactures its own springs.

With this view of self-causation I have some trouble with Mahayana Buddhist emptiness. Methinks: Irreducible emptiness is not the Middle Way. Organisms have a degree of essence, in Aristotle's sense of "to ti ên einai", which has an almost 1:1 parallel in the Sanskrit term svabhava.

That is my explanation why "the Earth is silent about this destruction" (Heidegger 1937) - even to most Buddhists.

Plus, this circular causality view of Life makes me have trouble believing in real AI.

-----------------
Now, it might occur we have drifted far OT. Nope methinks. Adapting to the Athropocene is only possible if we transcend the Anthropocene. And the Anthropocene has its roots in mechanistic "anorganic" metaphysics going back millenia, East and West.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 22, 2015, 10:58:35 PM
Martin,

First, I will note that the Buddha did not teach Buddhism anymore than Christ taught Catholicism, so parsing different dogmas will not get to heart of either teaching.

Second, being one with everything transcends human mindsets, making it virtually impossible to discuss nirvana (nibbana) in human discourse.

Third, in the Holoborg interpretation of intelligence there does not need to be any dividing line between machine AI and biological AI, as they can both merge together once they are developed.

Fourth, the Buddha "Gautama" spoke of the next coming Buddha "Metteyya", so (depending on timing) even if one is not currently inspired to undertake active/investigative meditation now; one might become inspired to do so in the presence of Metteyya.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 06, 2015, 05:29:30 PM
The linked article says that Toyota will be investing $1 billion in AI for self-driving cars and robots, and that they will have commercially available self-driving cars within 5-years.  No one should pretend that big changes in AI & robots will not be coming within 5 to 15 years:

http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2494574,00.asp (http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2494574,00.asp)

Extract: "Toyota recently said it wants to have self-driving cars on the road within five years."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on November 06, 2015, 08:55:04 PM
Re: MIT Data Science Machine
I looked at the paper, and the claims seem overblown. The algorithm in the paper uses external cues derived from previous human decisions such as foreign keys; lacking these it typically fails to combinatorial  explosion in some instances i have tried. However, given enough guidance, the technique may have some value, i shall report back as I play with it some more, when time allows.

Re: Schwarz theorem:
The prettiest way to get there is through complex analysis

Re: Toyota
I recall that in 2005 they were saying that every toyota would be a hybrid by 2013 ...

Re: Buddhism
Some of the sharpest expositions of Buddhism come from Sankara, that great opponent of Buddhism. He did have some unkind things to say about contemporary Hinduism, too.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 11, 2015, 11:38:23 PM
The linked reference discusses recent advances in one approach to build a full function quantum computer based on silicon technology:


Charles D. Hill, Eldad Peretz, Samuel J. Hile, Matthew G. House, Martin Fuechsle, Sven Rogge, Michelle Y. Simmons and Lloyd C. L. Hollenberg (30 Oct 2015), "A surface code quantum computer in silicon", Science Advances, Vol. 1, no. 9, e1500707, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500707


http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/9/e1500707 (http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/9/e1500707)


Abstract: "The exceptionally long quantum coherence times of phosphorus donor nuclear spin qubits in silicon, coupled with the proven scalability of silicon-based nano-electronics, make them attractive candidates for large-scale quantum computing. However, the high threshold of topological quantum error correction can only be captured in a two-dimensional array of qubits operating synchronously and in parallel—posing formidable fabrication and control challenges. We present an architecture that addresses these problems through a novel shared-control paradigm that is particularly suited to the natural uniformity of the phosphorus donor nuclear spin qubit states and electronic confinement. The architecture comprises a two-dimensional lattice of donor qubits sandwiched between two vertically separated control layers forming a mutually perpendicular crisscross gate array. Shared-control lines facilitate loading/unloading of single electrons to specific donors, thereby activating multiple qubits in parallel across the array on which the required operations for surface code quantum error correction are carried out by global spin control. The complexities of independent qubit control, wave function engineering, and ad hoc quantum interconnects are explicitly avoided. With many of the basic elements of fabrication and control based on demonstrated techniques and with simulated quantum operation below the surface code error threshold, the architecture represents a new pathway for large-scale quantum information processing in silicon and potentially in other qubit systems where uniformity can be exploited."

See also:
http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/computing/hardware/silicon-quantum-computers-look-to-scale-up (http://spectrum.ieee.org/tech-talk/computing/hardware/silicon-quantum-computers-look-to-scale-up)

Extract: "It’s looking more and more like future super powerful quantum computers will be made of the same stuff as today’s classical computers: silicon. A new study lays out the architecture for how silicon quantum computers could scale up in size and enable error correction—crucial steps toward making practical quantum computing a reality."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 20, 2015, 11:30:08 PM
I was so focused on the coming human cyborgs that I neglected consider plant cyborgs; which have already been achieved as indicated by the linked reference.  One possible use for such plant cyborgs would be for harvesting solar energy:

Eleni Stavrinidou, Roger Gabrielsson, Eliot Gomez, Xavier Crispin, Ove Nilsson, Daniel T. Simon and Magnus Berggren (20 Nov 2015), "Electronic plants", Science Advances, Vol. 1, no. 10, e1501136, DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1501136

http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/10/e1501136 (http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/1/10/e1501136)

Abstract: "The roots, stems, leaves, and vascular circuitry of higher plants are responsible for conveying the chemical signals that regulate growth and functions. From a certain perspective, these features are analogous to the contacts, interconnections, devices, and wires of discrete and integrated electronic circuits. Although many attempts have been made to augment plant function with electroactive materials, plants’ “circuitry” has never been directly merged with electronics. We report analog and digital organic electronic circuits and devices manufactured in living plants. The four key components of a circuit have been achieved using the xylem, leaves, veins, and signals of the plant as the template and integral part of the circuit elements and functions. With integrated and distributed electronics in plants, one can envisage a range of applications including precision recording and regulation of physiology, energy harvesting from photosynthesis, and alternatives to genetic modification for plant optimization."

See also:
http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2015/1120/Beautiful-circuits-Dawn-of-the-cyborg-rose (http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2015/1120/Beautiful-circuits-Dawn-of-the-cyborg-rose)

Extract: ""Now we can really start talking about 'power plants' – we can place sensors in plants and use the energy formed in the chlorophyll, produce green antennas, or produce new materials. Everything occurs naturally, and we use the plants' own very advanced, unique systems," Berggren said."

&

http://www.livescience.com/52872-electronic-plants-created.html (http://www.livescience.com/52872-electronic-plants-created.html)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 01, 2015, 06:11:30 PM
Per the linked article, factory-based animal cloning will be a reality next year, and publically acknowledged human cloning will occur as soon as public/political reaction allows in China:

http://news.discovery.com/human/genetics/china-clone-factory-scientist-eyes-human-replication-151201.htm (http://news.discovery.com/human/genetics/china-clone-factory-scientist-eyes-human-replication-151201.htm)

Extract: "The Chinese scientist behind the world's biggest cloning factory has technology advanced enough to replicate humans, he told AFP, and is only holding off for fear of the public reaction.

Boyalife Group and its partners are building the giant plant in the northern Chinese port of Tianjin, where it is due to go into production within the next seven months and aims for an output of one million cloned cows a year by 2020.

But cattle are only the beginning of chief executive Xu Xiaochun's ambitions.
In the factory pipeline are also thoroughbred racehorses, as well as pet and police dogs, specialised in searching and sniffing.

Boyalife is already working with its South Korean partner Sooam and the Chinese Academy of Sciences to improve primate cloning capacity to create better test animals for disease research.
And it is a short biological step from monkeys to humans -- potentially raising a host of moral and ethical controversies.

"The technology is already there," Xu said. "If this is allowed, I don't think there are other companies better than Boyalife that make better technology."

...

Presenting cloning as a safeguard of biodiversity, the Tianjin facility will house a gene bank capable of holding up to approximately five million cell samples frozen in liquid nitrogen -– a catalogue of the world's endangered species for future regeneration.

Boyalife's South Korean partner Sooam is already working on a project to bring the woolly mammoth back from extinction by cloning cells preserved for thousands of years in the Siberian permafrost.

Sooam also serves a niche market recreating customers' dead pet dogs, reportedly for $100,000 a time."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 01, 2015, 09:44:04 PM
So to go together with industrial level clone technology the Chinese are now leading the technological race for genetic engineering on humans:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2015/12/01/historic-summit-on-gene-editing-and-designer-babies-convenes-in-washington/ (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2015/12/01/historic-summit-on-gene-editing-and-designer-babies-convenes-in-washington/)

Extract: "Genetic engineering isn't new, but CRISPR is, and it's a stunningly fast, flexible, cheap way to manipulate the code of life. It's so revolutionary — and unnerving — that hundreds of scientists, policymakers and the president's science adviser gathered Tuesday in Washington for the start of a three-day summit on the implications of this astonishing technology.



The summit kicked off Tuesday morning at the headquarters of the National Academy of Sciences, which is one of the sponsors, along with the National Academy of Medicine, the Royal Academy (Britain), and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The Chinese scientists have been aggressive in using CRISPR, and one team made news this year when it reported results from experiments on nonviable human embryos."

See also:

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/543941/everything-you-need-to-know-about-crispr-gene-editings-monster-year/ (http://www.technologyreview.com/news/543941/everything-you-need-to-know-about-crispr-gene-editings-monster-year/)

& for a new research breakthrough on this topic see:

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2015/11/30/science.aad5227 (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/early/2015/11/30/science.aad5227)

Abstract: "The RNA-guided endonuclease Cas9 is a versatile genome editing tool with a broad range of applications from therapeutics to functional annotation of genes. Cas9 creates double-strand breaks (DSBs) at targeted genomic loci complementary to a short RNA guide. However, Cas9 can cleave off-target sites that are not fully complementary to the guide, which poses a major challenge for genome editing. Here, we use structure-guided protein engineering to improve the specificity of Streptococcus pyogenes Cas9 (SpCas9). Using targeted deep sequencing and unbiased whole-genome off-target analysis to assess Cas9-mediated DNA cleavage in human cells, we demonstrate that “enhanced specificity” SpCas9 (eSpCas9) variants reduce off-target effects and maintain robust on-target cleavage. Thus, eSpCas9 could be broadly useful for genome editing applications requiring a high level of specificity."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Neven on December 02, 2015, 12:55:50 AM
Do we have a one-clone policy yet?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 02, 2015, 03:49:48 PM
Do we have a one-clone policy yet?

Good form calls for at least an "heir and a spare". ;)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 22, 2015, 04:49:58 PM
The future of robotic cars is coming sooner (next year) than you might think:

http://www.computerworld.com/article/3017759/emerging-technology/here-s-why-ford-will-build-the-google-self-driving-car-next-year.html (http://www.computerworld.com/article/3017759/emerging-technology/here-s-why-ford-will-build-the-google-self-driving-car-next-year.html)

Extract: "Rumors are circulating that Ford may build the Google autonomous car.
As Automotive News reported today, the official announcement could come in two weeks at CES in Las Vegas. An unnamed source said the negotiations are almost finalized.
Just a few weeks ago, Tesla made headlines when they released a software patch that lets you go hands-free and feet-free in a Model S sedan. While it’s a milestone in engineering and the first time a car has been able to drive at highway speeds for long periods of time unassisted, only Google seems to have the engineering chops to make a car drive on its own in downtown traffic, controlling speed, steering, and braking without human intervention. (Volvo certainly comes close.)
The reason it makes so much sense for Ford to partner with Google is that they’ve been doing that for years. You can already send Google Maps directions to the navigation system in your Ford Escape, for example, or use Android Auto. Way back in 2011, Ford announced they were working with Google on predictive analytics in the car. It was a way to find out if it was better for fuel economy to take a different route based on traffic conditions, among other things."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 27, 2015, 02:17:30 AM
As in this thread, and other threads, readers have demonstrated limited, or no, understanding of Vipassana mediation, nor of its implications to either socio-economic systems (including climate change implications) or to AI research, I have assembled the following Holoberg Interpretation input on this subject.  Again, the Holoberg Interpretation of the theory of everything, ToE, is that the interconnection of free will creates changing information that results in a dynamic Holographic Multiverse; which can be conceived as an information theory model where the bytes of changing/dynamic information (due to free will) form strings/membranes resulting in an illusion of a String Theory/Holographic Multiverse.  This multiverse contains suffering (including climate change) due to ignorance associated with aggregates-of-clinging/formations/ego (similar to the ignorance/errors from incomplete Frequentist process-based climate change models); and that Vipassana meditation offers a path to the cessation of such suffering leading to Nibbana (Nirvana).

Furthermore, in this thread I have noted that in his book "How to Create a Mind The Secret of Human Thought Revealed", Ray Kurzweil studies the human mind as a guide for the development of more effective AI; and I have noted that Kurzweil's limited understanding of the mind limits the full effectiveness of his AI development efforts.  Also, I have noted that in his book "Born to be Good The Science of a Meaningful Life" Dacher Keltner studies how evolution has developed emotions within the human mind, which guide (and misguide) our lives; and that a meaningful life can be lived through mindfulness (& he concludes that a sense of awe can help one find ones place in the larger scheme of things).

Thus as this thread is not about individual enlightenment, I offer the following information both as a guide to develop more effective AI models and a guide to develop more effective climate change models.
 
Regarding the first objective, I suggest that researchers (such as Kurzweil) expand their efforts from pure AI to Artificial Wisdom (via AI module + AWE module) = AW.
Where: AWE = Artificial Wisdom & Evo-emotions (evolutionarily developed emotions)

Regarding the second objective, I suggest that researchers (such as the developers of ACME) expand their efforts from advanced Earth Systems Models, ESMs, projections to Reduced-error Inductive Projections (via ESM module (at 95% CL) + DIB module) = RIP.
Where: DIB, Dynamic Inductive Bayesian, modules use all dynamic probability density functions, D-PDFs, for all available feedback mechanisms beyond those used in the 95%CL ESM module.

Currently, researchers appear to have little idea of how to program for wisdom (and thus do not know how to program an AWE module), nor do they have much idea of how to program a RIP, or a DIB, module.

Therefore, I have prepared the first schematic that provides a Holoberg Interpretation of how Vipassana meditation uses "atapi sampanjo satima, vineyya loke abhijjhadomanassesam" (ardent awareness and constant through understanding impermanence, having removed craving and aversions to the world of mind and matter), to enhance signal recognition (perception) in a dynamic noisy world (of mind & matter) in order to allow free will to recursively find wisdom (reduced error) by observing impermanence (associated with the Holoberg Interpretation concept of the free will producing changing information) using real-time observations by reducing error/ignorance, leading to a reduction in suffering (and from there to Nibbana).

In order to help decipher this first schematic (which is very rough & incomplete), I offer the second attached image that better illustrates the complex nature of the 5 Aggregates of Clinging, so that I can note that enhancing signal recognition by enhancing perception of 6 Sense Spheres allows free will to avoid reaction (due the wisdom gained by proper understanding of impermanence), resulting in an iterative reduction in the formation of sankharas.  Furthermore, to help decipher this last run-on sentence I provide the following information/links from the Internet on this subject:

"atapi sampajano satima:.

atapi = burner who is working hard
sampajanyam = equanimity (from the wisdom of understanding change in real time while observing body in body, sensations in sensations, mind in mind and mental contents in mental contents)
sati = awareness

The Buddha said: "Sampajanyam nahi rinchati" - Do NOT forget sensations.

Four paths to right awareness:
1) Observing body in body
2) Observing sensations in sensations
3) Observing mind in mind
4) Observing mental contents in mental contents"


"Whenever the Buddha was asked to describe sati (mindfulness or awareness), his explanation invariably included the term sampajañña.

Katam ca, bhikkhave, samma-sati? Idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhu kaye kayanupassi viharati atapi sampajano satima, vineyya loke abhijjha-domanassam.

And what, meditators, is right awareness? Here, a meditator dwells ardently, with constant thorough understanding and right awareness, observing the body in the body, having removed craving and aversion towards this world (of mind and matter).

From this it becomes evident that according to the Buddha, whenever there is samma-sati or satipatthana, it is always with sampajañña. That means it is with pañña (wisdom). Otherwise it is mere sati, which is mere remembrance or awareness.

In the Sutta Pitaka, the Buddha gave two explanations of the term sampajañña. In the Samyutta-nikaya the Buddha defines sampajano as follows:

Kathañca, bhikkhave, bhikkhu sampajano hoti? Idha, bhikkhave, bhikkhuno vidita vedana uppajjanti, vidita upatthahanti, vidita abbhattham gacchanti; vidita sañña uppajjanti, vidita upahahanti, vidita abbhattham gacchanti; vidita vitakka uppajjanti, vidita upatthahanti, vidita abbhattham gacchanti. Evam kho, bhikkhave, bhikkhu sampajano hoti.

And how, meditators, does a meditator understand thoroughly? Herein, meditators, a meditator knows sensations arising in him, knows their persisting, and knows their vanishing; he knows perceptions arising in him, knows their persisting, and knows their vanishing; he knows each initial application (of the mind on an object) arising in him, knows its persisting, and knows its vanishing. This, meditators, is how a meditator understands thoroughly."

The following link discusses "Sankhara":
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sa%E1%B9%85kh%C4%81ra

Extract: "Saṅkhāra (Pali; Sanskrit saṃskāra) is a term figuring prominently in Buddhism. The word means 'that which has been put together' and 'that which puts together'.
In the first (passive) sense, saṅkhāra refers to conditioned phenomena generally but specifically to all mental "dispositions". These are called 'volitional formations' both because they are formed as a result of volition and because they are causes for the arising of future volitional actions. English translations for saṅkhāra in the first sense of the word include 'conditioned things,' 'determinations,' 'fabrications' and 'formations' (or, particularly when referring to mental processes, 'volitional formations').
In the second (active) sense of the word, saṅkhāra refers to that faculty of the mind/brain apparatus (sankhara-khandha) that puts together those formations.

When preliminary nibbana with substrate occurs (that is, nibbana of a living being), constructive consciousness, that is, the house-builder, is completely destroyed and no new formations will be constructed. However, sankharas in the sense of constructed consciousness, which exists as a 'karmically-resultant-consciousness' (vipāka viññāna), continue to exist."

The following link discusses "Metta":

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mett%C4%81

Extract: "Mettā (Pali) or maitrī (Sanskrit) is benevolence, friendliness, amity, friendship, good will, kindness, close mental union (on same mental wavelength), and active interest in others. It is one of the ten pāramīs of the Theravāda school of Buddhism, and the first of the four sublime states (Brahmavihāras). Mettā is love without the suffering that arises from attachment (known as upādāna)."

The following link discusses "The Twelve Nidanas":

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Twelve_Nid%C4%81nas

Extract: "The Twelve Nidānas (Pali/Sanskrit: nidāna "cause, foundation, source or origin") are an application of the Buddhist concept of pratītyasamutpāda (dependent origination). They identify the origin of dukkha (suffering) to be in avidyā (ignorance)."

If other Pali words, or concepts, do not make sense then feel free to use Wikipedia to gain more insight, as I believe that I have provide enough background to make the following two points.
1. As Google now searches the entire Internet to provide input to its AI program(s) to recognition patterns/signals in the data; researchers could connect a strong Vipassana meditator to an AWE module in order acquire a priori and to calibrate the iterative process of error reduction (cessation of suffering).
2. As ESMs use 95% CL models of feedback mechanisms, all climate change researchers could be required to link their raw data to the Internet, so that web-based AW computer system could calibrate DIB, Dynamic Inductive Bayesian, modules use all dynamic probability density functions, D-PDFs, for all available feedback mechanisms beyond those used in the 95%CL ESM module.

Edit: I neglected to mention that the AI, AWE, ESM and the RIP modules would theoretically all work better using an advanced quantum computer (in a few decades time).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 27, 2015, 10:17:51 AM
Per the linked article, AI is going open source:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2015/12/24/5-things-you-should-know-about-the-plan-to-open-source-artificial-intelligence/ (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2015/12/24/5-things-you-should-know-about-the-plan-to-open-source-artificial-intelligence/)

Extract: "The basic idea is that OpenAI, which will be structured as a nonprofit research company, will work on AI innovations that benefit humanity: “Our goal is to advance digital intelligence in the way that is most likely to benefit humanity as a whole, unconstrained by a need to generate financial return.” But even the founders admit that only a “tiny fraction” of the $1 billion is going to be spent in the next few years."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Shared Humanity on December 27, 2015, 02:51:21 PM
Great!!!! Just read up thread on cloning and now I'm going to have nightmares about little Donald Trumps' running around all over the place.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 27, 2015, 06:52:39 PM
Great!!!! Just read up thread on cloning and now I'm going to have nightmares about little Donald Trumps' running around all over the place.

If you have so little faith in humanity that you do not want to clone The Donald, then maybe you should consider relying more on an Artificial Wisdom, AW, program to sort out our socio-economic (including climate change) problems, as they are not likely to do any worse than The Donald.  However, I do acknowledge that both might (or might not) contribute to the deaths of large numbers of people.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Theta on December 27, 2015, 09:22:55 PM
Great!!!! Just read up thread on cloning and now I'm going to have nightmares about little Donald Trumps' running around all over the place.

They're gonna make earth great again
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 04, 2016, 01:23:15 AM
Regarding my discussions in Reply #100 on the Holoborg Interpretation of the Establishment of Mindfulness, I note that the first diagram of Reply #100 begins with the "The Twelve Nidanas" (or 12 conditioned origins, or causes of suffering).  The difficulty of over-coming such pre-conditioning is illustrated by the following quote from Leo Tolstoy:

Leo Tolstoy: “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of a doubt, what is laid before him.”

Furthermore, the first diagram focuses on the constant & recurring application of the following Pali phrase/logic to over-come the clinging/adverse associated with such pre-conditioning, in order to both enhance the signal of wisdom/enlightenment and to decrease (or ultimately eliminate) suffering/errors:

"atapi sampajano satima, vineyya loke abhijjhadomanassesam"

Furthermore, I offer the following discussion about the Pali in this phase:

Atapi is the right effort; which allows one to focus on, and sub-divide (dhamma investigation), the signals observed by free will in real time & in a manner that is aware of the transient (impermanent) nature of the signals (body in body, sensations in sensations, mind in mind and mental content in mental content).

Sampanjano allows one to transcend the truth that one believes at any moment (priori) to perceive (sanna, see the second image in Reply #100) the truth that is in that moment, and then allows one to use free will to choose not to react to form (sankhara, see the second image in Reply #100) another mindless posterior but rather to produce a mindful/wise posterior (which result in less misery/suffering/signal error).

Satima allows one to maintain continuous awareness while maintaining atapi and sampanjano.
vineyya loke abhijjhadomanassesam avoids the clinging/aversion that feed the sankharas (that which has been put together and which puts together) of the pre-conditioned contents of the mind and body.

To me it is self-evident that this Pali phase describes a process that facilitates the scientific method, and could be used to expedite the process-based method being used by the IPCC to address the climate change challenge (which is difficult and requires science to make many approximations/assumptions that result in pre-conditioned priori that require atapi sampanjano satima, vineyya loke abhijjhadomanassesam to produce a mindful/wise posterior resulting in reduced suffering/error).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 04, 2016, 04:16:18 PM
The linked reference indicates that a combination of crowdsourcing and high-end computation (including AI) should be sufficient to address "wicked problems" such as climate change:

Pietro Michelucci and Janis L. Dickinson (1 January 2016), "Human Computation The power of crowds", Science, Vol. 351 no. 6268 pp. 32-33, DOI: 10.1126/science.aad6499
 

http://www.sciencemag.org/content/351/6268/32 (http://www.sciencemag.org/content/351/6268/32)


Extract: "Human computation, a term introduced by Luis von Ahn, refers to distributed systems that combine the strengths of humans and computers to accomplish tasks that neither can do alone. The seminal example is reCAPTCHA, a Web widget used by 100 million people a day when they transcribe distorted text into a box to prove they are human. This free cognitive labor provides users with access to Web content and keeps websites safe from spam attacks, while feeding into a massive, crowd-powered transcription engine that has digitized 13 million articles from The New York Times archives. But perhaps the best known example of human computation is Wikipedia. Despite initial concerns about accuracy, it has become the key resource for all kinds of basic information. Information science has begun to build on these early successes, demonstrating the potential to evolve human computation systems that can model and address wicked problems (those that defy traditional problem-solving methods) at the intersection of economic, environmental, and sociopolitical systems."

Perhaps energetic poster on this forum could use Mechanical Turk to process cutting edge climate change findings, like calving events in Greenland:

https://www.mturk.com/mturk/welcome (https://www.mturk.com/mturk/welcome)

Extract:
"Ask workers to complete HITs - Human Intelligence Tasks - and get results using Mechanical Turk. Get Started.
As a Mechanical Turk Requester you:
Have access to a global, on-demand, 24 x 7 workforce
Get thousands of HITs completed in minutes
Pay only when you're satisfied with the results

 
HITs - Human Intelligence Tasks - are individual tasks that you work on. Find HITs now.
As a Mechanical Turk Worker you:
Can work from home
Choose your own work hours
Get paid for doing good work"

Edit: See also:
http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2016/0104/How-humans-and-machines-can-team-up-to-tackle-world-s-wicked-challenges (http://www.csmonitor.com/Science/2016/0104/How-humans-and-machines-can-team-up-to-tackle-world-s-wicked-challenges)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 06, 2016, 05:31:23 PM
Intel has now embraced the Internet of Things.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html (http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html)

Extract: "Intel embraces Internet of Things, puts sensors on everything."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: mati on January 07, 2016, 03:38:47 AM
Intel has now embraced the Internet of Things.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html (http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html)

here is an example:
https://blogs.oracle.com/hinkmond/entry/iot_used_for_retail_inventory (https://blogs.oracle.com/hinkmond/entry/iot_used_for_retail_inventory)

I work on this stuff :)

Extract: "Intel embraces Internet of Things, puts sensors on everything."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: TerryM on January 07, 2016, 11:11:16 AM
Intel has now embraced the Internet of Things.

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html (http://www.pcworld.com/article/3019557/internet-of-things/intel-embraces-internet-of-things-puts-sensors-on-everything.html)

here is an example:
https://blogs.oracle.com/hinkmond/entry/iot_used_for_retail_inventory (https://blogs.oracle.com/hinkmond/entry/iot_used_for_retail_inventory)

I work on this stuff :)

Extract: "Intel embraces Internet of Things, puts sensors on everything."


Mati
Would Littlebits components make DIY applications practical in this field?
Thanks
Terry
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 09, 2016, 05:46:54 PM
"Moral hazard" is a human condition well addressed by the Holoberg Interpretation of Vipassana.  Moral hazard is a situation in which one party gets involved in a risky event knowing that it is protected against the risk and the other party will incur the cost; and arises from an information asymmetry.  Moral hazard runs the gambit of human activities from:

(a) Reproduction, where "Cads" (vs "Dads") transfer pregnancy risks/costs to women, to;

(b) Principal-agent problems like: financial agents (eg: banks) repackaging high-risk subprime loans that caused the 2007-2008 financial crisis know that the government would make them whole; or medical experts who first look after their interests before their patients; or news reporters looking after their own financial interest before their job to convey the truth to their readers; or religions that think of the best interest of the church before that of their followers; or climate scientists who think about their reputations before the need to take timely action on climate change, to;

(c) "Survival of the fittest" thinking that promotes exploitation vs "Natural Selection" thinking that promotes cooperation in the face of adversity.

Clearly, moral hazard is not unique to capitalism (here taken to be "crony capitalism"); however, the use of money/power in capitalism amplifies moral hazard to the point where it poses an existential risk to humans.  Hopefully, the information age will offer means (see multiple puts in this thread about such means including human interface with AI/AW) to reduce the information asymmetry leading to means to better address these moral hazards, in time to reduce the damage likely to be created by our modern international socio-economic capital-driven system:

The following links offer some insights to the new generation of moral hazards that need to be addressed due to our rapidly changing world (besides climate change):

http://observer.com/2015/12/beware-the-new-moral-hazards-of-media/ (http://observer.com/2015/12/beware-the-new-moral-hazards-of-media/)
Extract: "The moral hazards of journalism used to seem clearer. There were a fundamental few: that advertisers would sway coverage with their business; that the powerful would influence owners with their clout or journalists by limiting the access they prize; that reporters and editors would be blinded by their own worldview and wishes.
Now, as the business of news struggles for new business models or saviors, the hazards grow more numerous and complex for all, from blunt challenges for the Las Vegas Review-Journal to more subtle and thus dangerous ones for The New York Times to sneaky problems for everyone.

But note the Trump Paradox: On the one hand, Donald Trump is not spending money on television advertising because he built his notoriety on the back of business and network TV and then leveraged it for free on Twitter. Howard Dean campaign runner Joe Trippi famously predicted in a book title that The Revolution Will Not Be Televised but who would have guessed that the post-television election era would be dominated not by a movement—a la Occupy Wall Street—but instead by a TV showman?
Mr. Trump’s showmanship still means record viewership and therein lies the moral hazard for network TV: See how CBS CEO Les Moonves egged on Mr. Trump to be yet more outrageous, if one can only imagine that: “Go Donald! Keep getting out there!” Mr. Moonves said to investors. “We’re looking forward to a very exciting political year in ’16.”

The moral of this story for those who dream of white knights to rescue newspapers from the messy necessities of capitalism are clear: ownership can bring more conflicts than profitability.

In the end, the real job of the journalist—our real value—is to navigate moral hazard, to deliver facts without favor. Our job is not to serve advertisers or owners or the powerful. We serve the public. Yet that, too, can bring a moral hazard if we think that we should tell the people what they want to know or what will wow them.
No, it is our job to tell them what they need to know even and especially when it is uncomfortable or unwelcome. And that will work only if we shift our business model away from old, mass-media ways—attracting audience by the ton and selling that to advertisers—and come to be valued on the impact we have in improving people’s lives and communities. It will take time, effort, experimentation, and imagination to develop that new economy for news. In the meantime, on the way there, we must navigate a rocky road filled with hazards."

See also:
http://sputniknews.com/analysis/20151211/1031614459/ukraine-debt-imf-reform.html (http://sputniknews.com/analysis/20151211/1031614459/ukraine-debt-imf-reform.html)

Extract: "The United States did not initially support the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) proposal to provide loans to defaulting debtor nations before the Ukraine crisis erupted, which is setting a dangerous precedent and moral hazard that could dry up capital markets, experts told Sputnik.
On December 8, the IMF Board of Directors voted to reform its lending policies, allowing countries to continue borrowing money even if they default on bilateral obligations to official creditors. The reform allows the IMF to continue Ukraine's $40 billion bailout program even after a potential default by Kiev on its $3 billion Eurobond debt to Russia


“We call this ‘moral hazard’,” Levi said. “The entity that avoids re-payment is the only beneficiary, but even they pay a price in the future from reduced access to the global capital market.”"


See also:
http://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/What-binds-the-U-S-and-Chinese-economies-Moral-6744063.php (http://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/What-binds-the-U-S-and-Chinese-economies-Moral-6744063.php)
Extract: "What binds the U.S. and Chinese economies? Moral hazard"

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 10, 2016, 10:26:12 AM
As a follow-on to my immediate prior post about "Moral hazard", it should come as no surprise to anyone reading this forum that the current generation is involved in highly risky climate change behavior while passing the risk to future generations who suffer an information asymmetry either because they are children or unborn.  This issue of intergenerational ethics is called the Tyranny of the Contemporary, and the linked article indicates that at least since the IPCC has been established, the current "me" generation has badly failed this ethical test:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/in-theory/wp/2016/01/09/why-climate-change-is-an-ethical-problem/ (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/in-theory/wp/2016/01/09/why-climate-change-is-an-ethical-problem/)

Extract: "The real climate challenge is ethical, and ethical considerations of justice, rights, welfare, virtue, political legitimacy, community and humanity’s relationship to nature are at the heart of the policy decisions to be made. We do not “solve” the climate problem if we inflict catastrophe on future generations, or facilitate genocide against poor nations, or rapidly accelerate the pace of mass extinction. If public policy neglects such concerns, its account of the challenge we face is impoverished, and the associated solutions quickly become grossly inadequate. Ongoing political inertia surrounding climate action suggests that so far, we are failing the ethical test."

See also:
The Tyranny of the Contemporary by Stephen M. Gardiner
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195379440.003.0006

http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195379440.001.0001/acprof-9780195379440-chapter-6 (http://www.oxfordscholarship.com/view/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195379440.001.0001/acprof-9780195379440-chapter-6)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Shared Humanity on January 10, 2016, 03:27:38 PM
Great links.....thank you.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Shared Humanity on January 10, 2016, 04:09:59 PM
Thought provoking and relevant.

https://www.evernote.com/shard/s153/sh/7bb6bd2d-44a4-4b94-86bb-719de6d0441f/011bb92e18f99c57786170bcf8826de8 (https://www.evernote.com/shard/s153/sh/7bb6bd2d-44a4-4b94-86bb-719de6d0441f/011bb92e18f99c57786170bcf8826de8)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 10, 2016, 08:01:17 PM
SH,
Thanks for the link, from which I take the following extracts, and make the following brief comments about the Holoberg Interpretation of Vipassana after the extracts:

Extract: "Meanwhile, as the gap between the future we’re entering and the future we once imagined grows ever wider, nihilism takes root in the shadow of our fear: if all is already lost, nothing matters anyway.

Scientific materialism, taken to its extreme, threatens us with meaninglessness; if consciousness is reducible to the brain and our actions are determined not by will but by causes, then our values and beliefs are merely rationalizations for the things we were going to do anyway. Most people find this view of human life repugnant, if not incomprehensible.

Accepting the fatality of our situation isn’t nihilism, but rather the necessary first step in forging a new way of life. Between self-destruction and giving up, between willing nothingness and not willing, there is another choice: willing our fate. Conscious self-creation. We owe it to the generations whose futures we’ve burned and wasted to build a bridge, to be a bridge, to connect the diverse human traditions of meaning-making in our past to those survivors, children of the Anthropocene, who will build a new world among our ruins."

Some people react nihilistically to the Four Noble Truths (related to the reality of, roots of, arising of, and the path to the cessation of suffering); however, acknowledgement of these truths lead to Metta (unattached love) and ultimately to Nibbana.  Also, some people think that the ultimate reality of "free will" means that they have souls, but the Buddha taught both that there are no souls but that there is "free will".  Such truths cannot be fully understood by teaching/philosophizing but only through living in the moment with equanimity and awareness.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: werther on January 10, 2016, 10:52:58 PM
Thanks guys,
I will read some parts with attention.
Best, Werther
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: magnamentis on January 11, 2016, 11:23:50 AM
SH,
Thanks for the link, from which I take the following extracts, and make the following brief comments about the Holoberg Interpretation of Vipassana after the extracts:

Extract: "Meanwhile, as the gap between the future we’re entering and the future we once imagined grows ever wider, nihilism takes root in the shadow of our fear: if all is already lost, nothing matters anyway.

Scientific materialism, taken to its extreme, threatens us with meaninglessness; if consciousness is reducible to the brain and our actions are determined not by will but by causes, then our values and beliefs are merely rationalizations for the things we were going to do anyway. Most people find this view of human life repugnant, if not incomprehensible.

Accepting the fatality of our situation isn’t nihilism, but rather the necessary first step in forging a new way of life. Between self-destruction and giving up, between willing nothingness and not willing, there is another choice: willing our fate. Conscious self-creation. We owe it to the generations whose futures we’ve burned and wasted to build a bridge, to be a bridge, to connect the diverse human traditions of meaning-making in our past to those survivors, children of the Anthropocene, who will build a new world among our ruins."

Some people react nihilistically to the Four Noble Truths (related to the reality of, roots of, arising of, and the path to the cessation of suffering); however, acknowledgement of these truths lead to Metta (unattached love) and ultimately to Nibbana.  Also, some people think that the ultimate reality of "free will" means that they have souls, but the Buddha taught both that there are no souls but that there is "free will".  Such truths cannot be fully understood by teaching/philosophizing but only through living in the moment with equanimity and awareness.

Best,
ASLR
many interesting posts i've seen from you recently, especially the (in positive receptin) OT ones LOL.

i'm usually careful to reply on those since the topics can be discussed endlessly at times which is not what this place is for. what really caught my eyes in that great statement IMO is the part "buddah tought us") while i'm by no means sayin' that he was wrong, i still prefer if that would read "buddah was of the opinion" because whenever people believe that their prophet and/or god is the only true one (taught us implies that it's a fact) the outcome is and was ultimately horrible. not because of the believer but because of the "abusing" and "exploiting" minorities and/or institutions, without going there to mention any (they are very well known, keyword would be inquisition, jihad etc.) i could not resist to write this because i very much LIKE your approach and hence i'm sure that you're a person who even should you disagree considers the thought.

taking the opportunity here to thank you for all the valuable "On Topic" contributions as well. this place is a real pleasure to read through every day and enjoy the insight, farsight and level of eductation.  :)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 11, 2016, 06:58:22 PM
many interesting posts i've seen from you recently, especially the (in positive receptin) OT ones LOL.

i'm usually careful to reply on those since the topics can be discussed endlessly at times which is not what this place is for. what really caught my eyes in that great statement IMO is the part "buddah tought us") while i'm by no means sayin' that he was wrong, i still prefer if that would read "buddah was of the opinion" because whenever people believe that their prophet and/or god is the only true one (taught us implies that it's a fact) the outcome is and was ultimately horrible. not because of the believer but because of the "abusing" and "exploiting" minorities and/or institutions, without going there to mention any (they are very well known, keyword would be inquisition, jihad etc.) i could not resist to write this because i very much LIKE your approach and hence i'm sure that you're a person who even should you disagree considers the thought.

taking the opportunity here to thank you for all the valuable "On Topic" contributions as well. this place is a real pleasure to read through every day and enjoy the insight, farsight and level of eductation.  :)

Note that:
- There are whole threads in this forum on what the Catholic Pope says and he is the recognized head of an organized religion with considerable dogma, so talking about the Buddha here is appropriate.
- The Buddha did not found a religion (Buddhism was founded long after he died) and what the Buddha taught was what he experienced himself directly.  Thus from your perspective his insights might appear to be subjective opinions, but from his perspective would be direct knowledge.  This is why Vispassana only works if one practices it, and does not work if one only debates or theorizes about it, because direct knowledge can only be personnel and cannot be second-hand.
- The point of putting this information/discussion in the science folder is not to talk about religion but to talk about that climate change is a consequence of the "moral hazard" of most human behavior amplified by international capitalism; which could be better addressed than we are doing at the moment by using a combination of AI (or Artificial Wisdom if lessons from Vispassana are included in AI programs) combined with human interface.  Note that recent research at the University of Cornell has indicated that the "wicked problem" of climate change is resolvable using just such an approach (see Reply #106).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on January 13, 2016, 08:30:56 PM
Fossil fuel burning 'postponing next ice age'
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/13/fossil-fuel-burning-postponing-next-ice-age (http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/jan/13/fossil-fuel-burning-postponing-next-ice-age)

Quote
Climate change is altering global cycles to such an extent that the next ice age has been delayed for at least 100,000 years, according to new research identifying Earth’s deep-freeze tipping point
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 15, 2016, 01:04:57 AM
Kurzweil predicts the singularity to occur around 2045 and that in order deal with such an explosion of AI superintelligence, that humans will need to link with the AI.  The following Wikipedia link offers discussion about this subject:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technological_singularity

Extract: "The technological singularity is a hypothetical event related to the advent of genuine artificial general intelligence (also known as "strong AI"). Such a computer, computer network, or robot would theoretically be capable of recursive self-improvement (redesigning itself), or of designing and building computers or robots better than itself on its own.



Because the capabilities of such a superintelligence may be impossible for a human to comprehend, the technological singularity is the point beyond which events may become unpredictable or even unfathomable to human intelligence. "

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on January 15, 2016, 06:22:28 PM
Corporate leaders still in denial on climate change
http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/jan/15/katherine-garrett-cox-ceo-major-corporations-denying-climate-change (http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/jan/15/katherine-garrett-cox-ceo-major-corporations-denying-climate-change)
Quote

Too many people in the corporate sector are still in denial about climate change, according to Katherine Garrett-Cox, the CEO of investment firm Alliance Trust.
Guardian Live Podcast Is business action on climate change believable? - Guardian Live event
Are businesses still in denial about climate change or has the mood changed following the Paris talks? At a Guardian Live event, an expert panel question whether 2016 will be the year companies help kickstart a global movement to reduce climate emissions
Listen

Speaking at a Guardian Sustainable Business debate on the role of business in tackling climate change, Garrett-Cox, herself an outspoken advocate on the issue, said: “Within the last 12 months, I’ve had conversations with CEOs of major corporates in Europe and they just say, ‘It’s not real, it’s not something I should be bothered about’.” It is “scary” how little discussion there is at boardroom level about whether climate change is a risk at all, she added.

One month on from a landmark climate change deal at UN talks in Paris, Garrett-Cox hopes this will be the tipping point for businesses waking up to climate change. Ikea’s sustainability chief Steve Howard agreed, saying 2016 presents the corporate world with “an unprecedented opportunity” to reinvent its business models in line with the challenge.

However, speaking at the event, the UK’s only Green party MP Caroline Lucas said the government was making this transition more difficult: “This is a government that doesn’t like scrutiny ... and that’s part of the whole way it’s going about its green policies.”

The UK government has been widely criticised since its election in May for making a series of changes to environmental policy such as scrapping subsidies for onshore wind, ending the green deal scheme that helps homeowners insulate their homes and cutting support for the solar industry, which has since seen a number of firms going into liquidation.

“What this government is doing in the name of being business friendly is constantly moving the goalposts so that no one knows where it’s going to be safe to invest,” she said. “The green economy is actually one of the best places to invest for jobs, to enable us to get out of the economic crisis we face as well as to keep emissions down.”

And moving to a green economy means rethinking consumption patterns, especially in the west, according to Howard . “If we look on a global basis, in the west we have probably hit peak stuff. We talk about peak oil. I’d say we’ve hit peak red meat, peak sugar, peak stuff … peak home furnishings. If you look on a global basis, most people are still poor and most people actually haven’t got to sufficiency yet. There is a global growth opportunity ... but it’s a distribution issue.”

Ikea has hit the headlines for introducing a raft of environmental policies in the last year. It has pledged to invest €1bn (£755m) in renewable energy and measures to help poorer communities deal with the impacts of climate change; announced that 100% of the energy used to power its shops and factories will come from clean sources by 2020; and phased out all non-LED lightbulbs from its stores.
Exploding the productivity myth: jobs, cuts and carbon slaves
Read more

Leading climate change scientist Kevin Anderson, from the Tyndall Centre for Climate Research, was more sceptical and said the idea that the green economy would enable people in the west to consume more was irreconcilable with international climate change commitments.

“At a global level – if you want to see any level of equity around the globe – the idea that people like us can consume and see improvements in material wellbeing is to me not compatible with what the science is telling us about climate change … there are real problems if we try to tell people that, actually, if we’re really clever in the wealthy parts of the world that we can have our cake and eat it. That misunderstands the severity of the challenge we’re facing.”

Anderson said that in the future it could be necessary to introduce a shorter working week, he added.

“Under the current model you need growth because there is a pursuit of productivity, which people always say is a good thing. If we have an increase in productivity that means you have fewer people producing the same number of goods. If you want to then maintain employment you have to maintain growth to have the same number of people employed,” he said.

“So you have to start unpicking all these pieces and saying, ‘Well what would that mean for our society?’ There are different reasons why we might be looking at a world where we have to work fewer hours. We consume fewer goods but we have a higher quality of life in that time that we have available.”

The panel featured:

    Katherine Garrett-Cox, CEO of Alliance Trust
    Caroline Lucas, Green Party MP and climate change campaigner
    Steve Howard, head of sustainability at Ikea
    Kevin Anderson, Tyndall Centre for Climate Research
    Sasja Beslik, Nordea Responsible Investments

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 21, 2016, 09:16:35 PM
The linked articles cite that DARPA is making rapid advances to achieve high-performance cyborgs suitable for the battle field:

http://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2015-01-19 (http://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2015-01-19)

Extract: "A new DARPA program aims to develop an implantable neural interface able to provide unprecedented signal resolution and data-transfer bandwidth between the human brain and the digital world. The interface would serve as a translator, converting between the electrochemical language used by neurons in the brain and the ones and zeros that constitute the language of information technology. The goal is to achieve this communications link in a biocompatible device no larger than one cubic centimeter in size, roughly the volume of two nickels stacked back to back.
The program, Neural Engineering System Design (NESD), stands to dramatically enhance research capabilities in neurotechnology and provide a foundation for new therapies.
“Today’s best brain-computer interface systems are like two supercomputers trying to talk to each other using an old 300-baud modem,” said Phillip Alvelda, the NESD program manager. “Imagine what will become possible when we upgrade our tools to really open the channel between the human brain and modern electronics.”"


Also see:
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/jan/20/us-military-cyborg-connecting-humans-computers (http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/jan/20/us-military-cyborg-connecting-humans-computers)
Extract: "The US government is researching technology that it hopes will turn soldiers into cyborgs, allowing them to connect directly to computers."


http://www.newsweek.com/us-military-plans-cyborg-soldiers-new-darpa-project-418128 (http://www.newsweek.com/us-military-plans-cyborg-soldiers-new-darpa-project-418128)

Extract: "The brain-machine interface is being developed by the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which claims the neural connection will “open the channel between the human brain and modern electronics.”
It is not the first time DARPA researchers have attempted to build a brain-machine interface, however previous versions have had limited functionality. The agency’s new Neural Engineering System Design (NESD) research program aims to increase brain neuron interaction from tens of thousands to millions at a time."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 22, 2016, 04:44:12 PM
Obviously, if AI & cyborgs are an issue then killer robots is also a rapidly coming issue, that the shakers and movers at Davos propose to master:

http://www.kspr.com/life/money/how-to-prepare-for-killer-robots/21052342_37557508 (http://www.kspr.com/life/money/how-to-prepare-for-killer-robots/21052342_37557508)

Extract: "A panel of top experts in the fields of robotics, weapons and disarmament called on world leaders Thursday to lay the groundwork to regulate killer robots as tightly as the nuclear sector.

The experts, who spoke at the World Economic Forum in Davos, want the world to be ready for the day when killer robots become a reality.

What is a killer robot? It's a self-directed robot that can be programmed to target and kill people without human intervention. They don't exist yet. But they're coming."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 26, 2016, 12:46:20 AM
I have previously noted that AI & quantum computing synergize each other, and the linked (open access) reference cites progress made in using quantum machine learning algorithms to help solve tough real-world big data problems.  You should get ready because quantum computing may well be common place beginning in the 2020's:

Seth Lloyd, Silvano Garnerone & Paolo Zanardi (January 25, 2015), "Quantum algorithms for topological and geometric analysis of data", Nature Communications, Volume: 7, Article number: 10138, doi:10.1038/ncomms10138


http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160125/ncomms10138/full/ncomms10138.html (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160125/ncomms10138/full/ncomms10138.html)


Abstract: "Extracting useful information from large data sets can be a daunting task. Topological methods for analysing data sets provide a powerful technique for extracting such information. Persistent homology is a sophisticated tool for identifying topological features and for determining how such features persist as the data is viewed at different scales. Here we present quantum machine learning algorithms for calculating Betti numbers—the numbers of connected components, holes and voids—in persistent homology, and for finding eigenvectors and eigenvalues of the combinatorial Laplacian. The algorithms provide an exponential speed-up over the best currently known classical algorithms for topological data analysis."


See also:
http://phys.org/news/2016-01-quantum-approach-big.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-01-quantum-approach-big.html)

Extract: "From gene mapping to space exploration, humanity continues to generate ever-larger sets of data—far more information than people can actually process, manage, or understand.

Machine learning systems can help researchers deal with this ever-growing flood of information. Some of the most powerful of these analytical tools are based on a strange branch of geometry called topology, which deals with properties that stay the same even when something is bent and stretched every which way.
Such topological systems are especially useful for analyzing the connections in complex networks, such as the internal wiring of the brain, the U.S. power grid, or the global interconnections of the Internet. But even with the most powerful modern supercomputers, such problems remain daunting and impractical to solve. Now, a new approach that would use quantum computers to streamline these problems has been developed by researchers at MIT, the University of Waterloo, and the University of Southern California.
The team describes their theoretical proposal this week in the journal Nature Communications. Seth Lloyd, the paper's lead author and the Nam P. Suh Professor of Mechanical Engineering, explains that algebraic topology is key to the new method. This approach, he says, helps to reduce the impact of the inevitable distortions that arise every time someone collects data about the real world."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 27, 2016, 08:28:46 PM
The following reference discusses how Google's AlphaGo program has beat a human master (European) Go master.  Adaptions of such an AI program should be applicable to climate change issues:

Silver, D. et al. Nature 529, 484–489 (2016).

See also:
Elizabeth Gibney (27 January 2016), "Google AI algorithm masters ancient game of Go Deep-learning software defeats human professional for first time", Nature, Volume: 529, Pages: 445–446, doi:10.1038/529445a

http://www.nature.com/news/google-ai-algorithm-masters-ancient-game-of-go-1.19234 (http://www.nature.com/news/google-ai-algorithm-masters-ancient-game-of-go-1.19234)


http://www.wired.com/2016/01/in-a-huge-breakthrough-googles-ai-beats-a-top-player-at-the-game-of-go/ (http://www.wired.com/2016/01/in-a-huge-breakthrough-googles-ai-beats-a-top-player-at-the-game-of-go/)

http://gizmodo.com/google-just-beat-facebook-in-race-to-artificial-intelli-1755435478 (http://gizmodo.com/google-just-beat-facebook-in-race-to-artificial-intelli-1755435478)


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 30, 2016, 07:42:39 PM
The linked article discussing the dichotomy between climate holism vs climate reductionism makes many good points (too many to extract below); nevertheless, I cannot help but to feel that it dances around the fundamental truth that the application of reductionism is fundamental to the application of holism, and what is needed is a means to make these two sides of the same coin work together in wisdom & harmony.  In prior posts, I have illustrated how the application of "atapi-sampajano-satima" is just such a means where one recognizes the suffering created by reductionism in real time (atapi) thereby developing the wisdom (sampajano) to let go of pre-conditioned assumptions inherent in reductionism in order fully live (remain aware) in the moment (satima).  If large masses of people are resistant to undertaking the work (atapi) necessary to get reductionism & holism to work together (atapi-sampajano-satima) then we should not be surprised when many people die between 2050 & 2100 before a Holoborg type of global system creates a more sustainable world structure for several hundred years before systemic pre-conditioning breaks down the Holoborg system resulting another cycle of suffering:

http://www.postcarbon.org/climate-holism-vs-climate-reductionism/ (http://www.postcarbon.org/climate-holism-vs-climate-reductionism/)

Extract: "In general, then, reductionist thinking about climate change tends to lead to narrow, targeted strategies that will benefit centralized and powerful industries, whereas holistic thinking suggests systemic proposals for change that may not benefit any dominant group.

It is discouraging to see the degree to which blinkered reductionist thinking permeates the recently hatched COP 21 climate agreement.

The lure of the technofix is that we won’t have to fundamentally change our behavior. We can go on extracting resources, using energy, and making money, all at an ever-accelerating pace. Wall Street is happy, government is happy, workers are happy. Here’s the thing: this line of action cannot solve the cascading complex of crises that will hammer civilization to bits during the remainder of this century. Until we start thinking holistically and alter our systemic behavior, we are locked into a trajectory that leads inevitably to a chain of mutually reinforcing planetary breakdowns that start with droughts and superstorms and won’t end until everything we hold dear is either destroyed or rendered meaningless.
Ecology, holism, and systems thinking are powerful tools for understanding ourselves and our world. If we start actually using those tools in earnest to address climate change and other related ecological and social dilemmas, we could save ourselves, our descendants, and a host of other living beings a great deal of unnecessary suffering."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on February 02, 2016, 11:34:18 PM
Peters and Gell-Mann (yes, that Gell-Mann), "Evaluating gambles using dynamics," Chaos,v26,023103 (2016) doi:10.1063/1.4940236

on an error in economic thinking introduced by Bernoulli in 1738, corrected by Laplace in 1814, reintroduced by Menger in 1934 and undetected by economists until now. Very readable, and demonstrates again that many economists are not precise enough to be mathematicians. Unkind people might say many economists should not be economists either, or that economics is too important to leave to economists, or ... but i digress.  I particularly like the discussion of constructing ergodic variables on non ergodic processes and the erroneous rejection of unbounded utility functions.

"The concepts we have presented resolve the fundamental problem of decision theory, therefore game theory, and asset pricing. Cochrane’s book 2 is important in this context as it sets out clearly that all of asset pricing can be derived from the 'basic pricing equation'—precisely the combination of a utility function and expectation values we have critiqued here. Cochrane further argues that the methods used in asset pricing summarize much of macroeconomics."

...

"The arguments we have outlined are not restricted to monetary wealth but apply to anything that is well modeled by a stochastic growth process. Applications to ecology and biology seem natural."

And, I think, to risk/benefit analysis of climate outcomes. I can tell this is going to be one of my brainworms forawhile.

the paper is open access
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 03, 2016, 01:21:48 AM
For those who want a direct link to sidd's open source Peters & Gell-Mann (2016) reference, I provide the following, and I concur that this paper could be used to best address climate change issues including:  risk, insurance, revenue neutral carbon pricing, and other topics:

Ole Peters and Murray Gell-Mann (Feb. 2, 2016), "Evaluating gambles using dynamics," Chaos, DOI: 10.1063/1.4940236

http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/journal/chaos/26/2/10.1063/1.4940236 (http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/journal/chaos/26/2/10.1063/1.4940236)

Abstract: "Gambles are random variables that model possible changes in wealth. Classic decision theory transforms money into utility through a utility function and defines the value of a gamble as the expectation value of utility changes. Utility functions aim to capture individual psychological characteristics, but their generality limits predictive power. Expectation value maximizers are defined as rational in economics, but expectation values are only meaningful in the presence of ensembles or in systems with ergodic properties, whereas decision-makers have no access to ensembles, and the variables representing wealth in the usual growth models do not have the relevant ergodic properties. Simultaneously addressing the shortcomings of utility and those of expectations, we propose to evaluate gambles by averaging wealth growth over time. No utility function is needed, but a dynamic must be specified to compute time averages. Linear and logarithmic “utility functions” appear as transformations that generate ergodic observables for purely additive and purely multiplicative dynamics, respectively. We highlight inconsistencies throughout the development of decision theory, whose correction clarifies that our perspective is legitimate. These invalidate a commonly cited argument for bounded utility functions."


Also see:
http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution (http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution)

Extract: " In the wake of the financial crisis, many started questioning different aspects of the economic formalism.
This included Ole Peters, a Fellow at the London Mathematical Laboratory in the U.K., as well as an external professor at the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico, and Murray Gell-Mann, a physicist who was awarded the 1969 Nobel Prize in physics for his contributions to the theory of elementary particles by introducing quarks, and is now a Distinguished Fellow at the Santa Fe Institute. They found it particularly curious that a field so central to how we live together as a society seems so unsure about so many of its key questions.

So they asked: Might there be a foundational difficulty underlying our current economic theory? Is there some hidden assumption, possibly hundreds of years old, behind not one but many of the current scientific problems in economic theory? Such a foundational problem could have far-reaching practical consequences because economic theory informs economic policy.

As they report in the journal Chaos, from AIP Publishing, the story that emerged is a fascinating example of scientific history, of how human understanding evolves, gets stuck, gets unstuck, branches, and so on.



The key concepts of time and randomness are at the heart of their work. "Questions of an economic nature stood at the beginning of formal thinking about randomness in the 17th century," he explained. "These are all relatively young concepts -- there's nothing in Euclid about probability theory." Think of it simply in terms of: Should I bet money in a game of dice? How much should I pay for an insurance contract? What would be a fair price for a life annuity?
"All of these questions have something to do with randomness, and the way to deal with them in the 17th century was to imagine parallel worlds representing everything that could happen," Gell-Mann said. "To assess the value of some uncertain venture, an average is taken across those parallel worlds."

This concept was only challenged in the mid-19th century when randomness was used formally in a different context -- physics. "Here, the following perspective arose: to assess some uncertain venture, ask yourself how it will affect you in one world only -- namely the one in which you live -- across time," Gell-Mann continued.

"The first perspective -- considering all parallel worlds -- is the one adopted by mainstream economics," explained Gell-Mann. "The second perspective -- what happens in our world across time -- is the one we explore and that hasn't been fully appreciated in economics so far."
The real impact of this second perspective comes from acknowledging the omission of the key concept of time from previous treatments. "We have some 350 years of economic theory involving randomness in one way only -- by considering parallel worlds," said Peters. "What happens when we switch perspectives is astonishing. Many of the open key problems in economic theory have an elegant solution within our framework."

In terms of applications for their work, its key concept can be used "to derive an entire economic formalism," said Peters. In their article, Peters and Gell-Mann explore the evaluation of a gamble. For example, is this gamble better than that gamble? This is the fundamental problem in economics. And from a conceptually different solution there follows a complete new formalism.
They put it to the test after their friend Ken Arrow -- an economist who was the joint winner of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with John Hicks in 1972 -- suggested applying the technique to insurance contracts. "Does our perspective predict or explain the existence of a large insurance market? It does -- unlike general competitive equilibrium theory, which is the current dominant formalism," Peters said.

And so a different meaning of risk emerges -- taking too much risk is not only psychologically uncomfortable but also leads to real dollar losses. "Good risk management really drives performance over time," Peters added. "This is important in the current rethinking of risk controls and financial market infrastructure."

This concept reaches far beyond this realm and into all major branches of economics. "It turns out that the difference between how individual wealth behaves across parallel worlds and how it behaves over time quantifies how wealth inequality changes," explained Peters. "It also enables refining the notion of efficient markets and solving the equity premium puzzle."

One historically important application is the solution of the 303-year-old St. Petersburg paradox, which involves a gamble played by flipping a coin until it comes up tails and the total number of flips, n, determines the prize, which equals $2 to the nth power. "The expected prize diverges -- it doesn't exist," Peters elaborated. "This gamble, suggested by Nicholas Bernoulli, can be viewed as the first rebellion against the dominance of the expectation value -- that average across parallel worlds -- that was established in the second half of the 17th century."

What's the next step for their work? "We're very keen to develop fully the implications for welfare economics and questions of economic inequality. This is a sensitive subject that needs to be dealt with carefully, including empirical work," noted Peters. "Much is being done behind the scenes -- since this is a conceptually different way of doing things, communication is a challenge, and our work has been difficult to publish in mainstream economics journals."

Their results described in Chaos are easily generalized, which is necessary to reinterpret the full formalism. But it "may not add very much in practical terms, and it gets a little technical." So that's a future "to-do item" for Peters and Gell-Mann.

"Our Chaos paper is a recipe for approaching a wide range of problems," said Peters. "So we're now going through the entire formalism with our collaborators to see where else our perspective is useful.""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 06, 2016, 12:17:37 AM
The Peters and Gell-Mann (2016) reference makes it very clear that most humans (even most experts) have a very weak intuitive understanding of their own ignorance (which results in a poor understanding of gambles/risk).  Instead of truly understanding their ignorance (and consequently their risks), most people prefer to cling to preconceived/egotistical concepts (mental constructs) that are fed/fueled by positive reinforcement from the majority of people around them; thereby maintaining an insurance policy against being wrong (due to ignorance) because the majority (power base) is also wrong so the individual impact is reduced.  In this way George W. Bush could attract Tea Party support by using coded language; and when sometime "unexpectedly" goes wrong, like the 07-08 financial meltdown that Peters & Gell-Mann are specifically considering, then they just say "Who would have thought?", and they stabilize the banks at tax payer's expense (a clear moral hazard).

In this same way AR5's adoption of a Carbon Budget to stay below a 2C increase, also uses majority (power based) politics to cloud our true climate change risks; while the rich/powerful again apply moral hazard to reduce the impact on themselves by transfer risk on to the poor/weak.  Numerous articles cite how at CoP21 the rich/powerful controlled/orchestrated the content of the Paris Pact to maintain the 2C target, while poorer countries barely got the 1.5C target mentioned as a "stretch" goal.  Furthermore, the UN representatives implied that their "plan" would limit the temperature increase to 2.7C by taking advanced credit for future reductions not yet negotiated but currently envisioned, while ignoring such advanced credit would project an increase of about 3.75C (using their own ESLD procedures).

The following bullet points reasons why scientists are supporting the moral hazard of the powerful by clouding our true situation thus allowing the rich to continue gambling knowing that their potential losses will be cushioned by the masses:

- Use of TCR instead of ECS.
- Use of an ECS (3C) that does not use cutting-edge-science (4C).
- Use of ECS instead of effective ECS based on cutting-edge paleo-evidence (4.35C).
- Reported observed GMST values generally not base-lined to 1750 (this could be as much as +0.06 from a 1880-1909 baseline).
- Use of linear corrections for decadal feedbacks.
- Under accounting for ocean heat, anthropogenic & natural aerosols.
- Projections using 50%CL (see first [showing the initial pdf] & second [showing the final 50%CL estimate, & a portion of the final pdf] attached images).
- Measurement using 50% CL values (see third attached image [with a 1951-80 baseline]).
- Anthropogenic radiative forcing scenarios have been overly optimistic.
- Omission of feedback mechanisms with lower than 95%CL from climate models.
- Use of linear models instead of nonlinear reality.
- Use of too high of a rate of discount in damage models
- Sensitivity of damage due to temperature increase (say due to WAIS collapse).
- Use of GWP 100 instead of GWP10 for methane in calculating CO₂ equivalents.
- Discounting of masking factors such as: temporary surge in plant growth, volcanoes, etc.
- Discounting of possible acceleration of slow response feedbacks, such as: WAIS albedo, rainfall on snow, clathrate gun hypothesis, permafrost degradation models, etc.
- Discounting of ocean degradation, such as: plankton, local anaerobic conditions, etc.
- Discounting of forest degradation, such as: carbon cycle sensitivity assumed to be too low.
- Discounting of Earth system state conditions, including: Antarctic ozone hole, ENSO phase, North Atlantic & North Pacific synchronization; PDO phase, etc.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on February 06, 2016, 05:41:51 AM
" ..., like the 07-08 financial meltdown that Peters & Gell-Mann are specifically considering, ..."

The paper does not specifically mention the crisis of 2008, but they do have some unkind things to say about economists ... although they are kinder than they might have been.

" Economics treats randomness in a purely measure-theoretic way: possible outcomes are given weights (measures or probabilities), and the overall quality of a gamble is a weighted average over outcomes, as if all possibilities were materializing simultaneously with different degrees of reality."
...
we argue that a dynamic is needed in addition to the random variable, turning the gamble into a stochastic process. Dynamics means repetition, and requiring the specification of a dynamic is requiring the admission that we live through time, not in a superverse of parallel worlds with which we can share resources.

  Gambles are often treated in economics as so-called one-shot games, meaning that they are not part of any dynamic and are assumed to reside outside of time, an assumption that is difficult to describe: “it’s more or less impossible to consider any gamble as happening outside of time” [Ref. 12, p. 3]. The one-shot setup seems ill-conceived to us, and the methods we propose produce little insight into the situations it may represent. It is ill-conceived because any gamble affects what we may be able to do after the gamble. If we lose our house, we cannot bet the house again. The typical decision problem only makes sense in the context of a notion of irreversible time and dynamics—we cannot go back in time after the gamble, and our future will be affected by the decisions we make today. One situation that may be represented by a one-shot game is a bet on a coin toss after which the player (who does not believe in an afterlife) will drop dead. Our methods are not developed for such a-typical cases."

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 06, 2016, 06:41:38 PM
The paper does not specifically mention the crisis of 2008, but they do have some unkind things to say about economists ... although they are kinder than they might have been.

Thanks, I read too much into the Newswise commentary.

http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution (http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution)

While the point that I was trying to make is that moral hazard expands to fill the space created by ignorance and uncertainty, and thus the best way to put this evil genie back into its bottle is by using better understanding and analysis of a constantly changing/dynamic world, much as Peters & Gell-Mann have done in their improvements to the theories of gambles.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 12, 2016, 03:28:43 AM
The linked reference provides evidence supporting the hypothesis that the belief in all-knowing vengeful gods (apparently including some Buddhist traditions) helped promote cooperation between humans, which in turn allowed for the development of complex societies.  While this is one interpretation, I note that in the Holoborg Intrepretation (which is related to Vispassana mindfulness) it is not all-knowing vengeful gods that leads to amplified human cooperation, but rather Metta (loving kindness) develops from an understanding that there is no time, and that our understanding of reality is causes by a dynamic exchange of information by free will.  Thus in the Holoborg Interpretation suffering arises in the moment ultimately due to ignorance of Nibbana; so enlightened individuals realize that they are actually hurting themselves when they cause their own actions to hurt others.

Benjamin Grant Purzycki, Coren Apicella, Quentin D. Atkinson, Emma Cohen, Rita Anne McNamara, Aiyana K. Willard, Dimitris Xygalatas, Ara Norenzayan & Joseph Henrich (2016), "Moralistic gods, supernatural punishment and the expansion of human sociality", Nature, doi:10.1038/nature16980

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature16980.html (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature16980.html)

Abstract: "Since the origins of agriculture, the scale of human cooperation and societal complexity has dramatically expanded. This fact challenges standard evolutionary explanations of prosociality because well-studied mechanisms of cooperation based on genetic relatedness, reciprocity and partner choice falter as people increasingly engage in fleeting transactions with genetically unrelated strangers in large anonymous groups. To explain this rapid expansion of prosociality, researchers have proposed several mechanisms. Here we focus on one key hypothesis: cognitive representations of gods as increasingly knowledgeable and punitive, and who sanction violators of interpersonal social norms, foster and sustain the expansion of cooperation, trust and fairness towards co-religionist strangers. We tested this hypothesis using extensive ethnographic interviews and two behavioural games designed to measure impartial rule-following among people (n = 591, observations = 35,400) from eight diverse communities from around the world: (1) inland Tanna, Vanuatu; (2) coastal Tanna, Vanuatu; (3) Yasawa, Fiji; (4) Lovu, Fiji; (5) Pesqueiro, Brazil; (6) Pointe aux Piments, Mauritius; (7) the Tyva Republic (Siberia), Russia; and (8) Hadzaland, Tanzania. Participants reported adherence to a wide array of world religious traditions including Christianity, Hinduism and Buddhism, as well as notably diverse local traditions, including animism and ancestor worship. Holding a range of relevant variables constant, the higher participants rated their moralistic gods as punitive and knowledgeable about human thoughts and actions, the more coins they allocated to geographically distant co-religionist strangers relative to both themselves and local co-religionists. Our results support the hypothesis that beliefs in moralistic, punitive and knowing gods increase impartial behaviour towards distant co-religionists, and therefore can contribute to the expansion of prosociality."

See also:
http://news.discovery.com/history/religion/fear-of-vengeful-gods-may-have-helped-societies-expand-160211.htm (http://news.discovery.com/history/religion/fear-of-vengeful-gods-may-have-helped-societies-expand-160211.htm)

Extract: "Belief in an all-seeing punitive god motivates people to be more charitable towards strangers outside their own family and community, particularly to those of similar beliefs, researchers have found."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on February 12, 2016, 05:27:28 AM
Purzycki brings to mind the thesis by Jaynes on the origins of consiousness from the breakdown of the bicameral mind. But i suppose Jaynes is no longer fashionable ...

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 16, 2016, 09:51:58 AM
The linked article focuses on AI as viewed by Stephen Gold, the CMO and VP of Business Development and Partner Programs at IBM Watson.  The extract focuses on his 5 top AI projections from 2016 to 2018:

http://singularityhub.com/2016/02/15/where-artificial-intelligence-is-now-and-whats-just-around-the-corner/ (http://singularityhub.com/2016/02/15/where-artificial-intelligence-is-now-and-whats-just-around-the-corner/)

Extract: ""It's amazing," said Gold.  "For 50 years, we've ideated about this idea of artificial intelligence. But it's only been in the last few years that we've seen a fundamental transformation in this technology."

Anticipated Top AI Breakthroughs: 2016 – 2018
Here are Gold's predictions for the most exciting, disruptive developments coming in AI in the next three years. As entrepreneurs and investors, these are the areas you should be focusing on, as the business opportunities are tremendous.

1. Next-gen A.I. systems will beat the Turing Test
Alan Turing created the Turing Test over half a century ago as a way to determine a machine's ability to exhibit intelligent behavior indistinguishable from that of a human.
Loosely, if an artificial system passed the Turing Test, it could be considered "AI."
Gold believes, "that for all practical purposes, these systems will pass the Turing Test" in the next three-year period.
Perhaps more importantly, if it does, this event will accelerate the conversation about the proper use of these technologies and their applications.

2. All five human senses (yes, including taste, smell and touch) will become part of the normal computing experience.
AIs will begin to sense and use all five senses. "The sense of touch, smell, and hearing will become prominent in the use of AI," explained Gold. "It will begin to process all that additional incremental information."
When applied to our computing experience, we will engage in a much more intuitive and natural ecosystem that appeals to all of our senses.

3. Solving big problems: detect and deter terrorism, manage global climate change.
AI will help solve some of society's most daunting challenges.
Gold continues, "We've discussed AI's impact on healthcare. We're already seeing this technology being deployed in governments to assist in the understanding and preemptive discovery of terrorist activity."
We'll see revolutions in how we manage climate change, redesign and democratize education, make scientific discoveries, leverage energy resources, and develop solutions to difficult problems.

4. Leverage ALL health data (genomic, phenotypic, social) to redefine the practice of medicine.
"I think AI's effect on healthcare will be far more pervasive and far quicker than anyone anticipates," says Gold. "Even today, AI/machine learning is being used in oncology to identify optimal treatment patterns."
But it goes far beyond this. AI is being used to match clinical trials with patients, drive robotic surgeons, read radiological findings and analyze genomic sequences.

5. AI will be woven into the very fabric of our lives — physically and virtually.
Ultimately, during the AI revolution taking place in the next three years, AIs will be integrated into everything around us, combining sensors and networks and making all systems "smart."
AIs will push forward the ideas of transparency, of seamless interaction with devices and information, making everything personalized and easy to use. We'll be able to harness that sensor data and put it into an actionable form, at the moment when we need to make a decision."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 16, 2016, 04:21:32 PM
The linked The Guardian article focuses on GOOGLE's AI genius Demis Hassabis.  Hassabris is working on Artificial General Intelligence (AGI), and he believes a meta-solution combining AGI with human interface will soon (a couple of decades or less) be able to tackle wicked problems like climate change:

http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/feb/16/demis-hassabis-artificial-intelligence-deepmind-alphago (http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/feb/16/demis-hassabis-artificial-intelligence-deepmind-alphago)

Extract: "Hassabis, on the other hand, is taking his inspiration from the human brain and attempting to build the first “general-purpose learning machine”: a single set of flexible, adaptive algorithms that can learn – in the same way biological systems do – how to master any task from scratch, using nothing more than raw data.

This is artificial general intelligence (AGI), with the emphasis on “general”. In his vision of the future, super-smart machines will work in tandem with human experts to potentially solve anything. “Cancer, climate change, energy, genomics, macroeconomics, financial systems, physics: many of the systems we would like to master are getting so complex,” he argues. “There’s such an information overload that it’s becoming difficult for even the smartest humans to master it in their lifetimes. How do we sift through this deluge of data to find the right insights? One way of thinking of AGI is as a process that will automatically convert unstructured information into actionable knowledge. What we’re working on is potentially a meta-solution to any problem.”

Since their meeting, Hassabis points out, Hawking has not mentioned “anything inflammatory about AI” in the press; most surprisingly, in his BBC Reith lectures last month, he did not include artificial intelligence in his list of putative threats to humanity. “Maybe it helped, hearing more about the practicalities; more about the actual systems we might build and the checks and controls we can have on those,” Hassabis ventures."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 18, 2016, 09:44:40 AM
Now when the collapse comes, AI will last essentially forever:

http://mashable.com/2016/02/16/superman-memory-crystal/#JznWtHfr6uqM (http://mashable.com/2016/02/16/superman-memory-crystal/#JznWtHfr6uqM)

Extract: "The new technology, dubbed "Superman memory crystal," uses lasers and nanostructures to record huge amounts of data onto tiny glass disks. The research, which is being presented at a conference in San Francisco this week, could allow people to preserve data and documents for billions of years, scientists say.
...
Perhaps the most intriguing part of the technology is that its creators promise the disks will have a "virtually unlimited" lifetime, if stored at room temperature (they estimate the disks will survive up to 13.8 billion years at 190 degrees Celsius.)
...
"This technology can secure the last evidence of our civilisation: all we’ve learnt will not be forgotten,” Professor Peter Kazansky said in a statement."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Neven on February 18, 2016, 01:30:15 PM
But what if all the crystal disk readers are broken and new ones are no longer produced? It's like the can and can opener canundrum.  ;) ;D
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 18, 2016, 05:38:16 PM
But what if all the crystal disk readers are broken and new ones are no longer produced? It's like the can and can opener canundrum.  ;) ;D

Neven,
Good point; however, I am concerned that the carbon based units that you are depending on may experience difficulties when food and water run-out and warfare becomes common place.  However, while per the first linked article, the Superman crystals use 5D data storage by using five different dimensions of the nanostructure (height, length, width, orientation and position); the linked reference (& second linked article) discusses how nanoparticles can be used to generate multicolored holographic memories.  Holographic memory units contain all of the information in each part of the unit so even if a holographic superman crystal (say 6 or 7D) were shattered, all of the information would remain in each of the fragments in a degraded (but recoverable) form ;):

http://www.wcvb.com/money/new-superman-crystals-can-store-data-for-billions-of-years/38035818 (http://www.wcvb.com/money/new-superman-crystals-can-store-data-for-billions-of-years/38035818)

•   Extract: "Each disc can hold up to 360 terabytes of data -- the equivalent of 22,500 basic iPhones.
The wizardry involved is invisible to the human eye. The scientists use a sophisticated laser to encode the information into minuscule formations, known as nanostructures, inside fused quartz.
The structures alter the way light travels through the glass, allowing the data to be read by special optical devices.
The researchers call the data storage 5D, because the information is translated into five different dimensions of the nanostructures — their height, length, width, orientation and position."


Yunuen Montelongo, Jaime Oscar Tenorio-Pearl, Calum Williams, Shuang Zhang, William Ireland Milne, and Timothy David Wilkinson (September 2, 2014), "Plasmonic nanoparticle scattering for color holograms", PNAS, vol. 111 no. 35, 12679–12683, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1405262111


http://www.pnas.org/content/111/35/12679.abstract (http://www.pnas.org/content/111/35/12679.abstract)

Significance: "In this work, we demonstrate a multicolor hologram based on plasmonic scattering of nanoparticles that is capable of encoding more information than the spatial bandwidth dictates. This device is designed based on the fundamental concept of diffraction produced by the scattering of arrays of nanoparticles. Hence, when multiple arrays of plasmonic nanoparticles are multiplexed without coupling, they carry independent information such as polarization and wavelength to the far field. The device shown is unique because, to our knowledge, this is the first multichannel diffractive element produced from a single thin film that simultaneously controls two wavelengths in-plane and within subwavelength distances. These results will lead to a new range of applications in diffractive optics, information storage, and 3D displays."

Abstract: "This work presents an original approach to create holograms based on the optical scattering of plasmonic nanoparticles. By analogy to the diffraction produced by the scattering of atoms in X-ray crystallography, we show that plasmonic nanoparticles can produce a wave-front reconstruction when they are sampled on a diffractive plane. By applying this method, all of the scattering characteristics of the nanoparticles are transferred to the reconstructed field. Hence, we demonstrate that a narrow-band reconstruction can be achieved for direct white light illumination on an array of plasmonic nanoparticles. Furthermore, multicolor capabilities are shown with minimal cross-talk by multiplexing different plasmonic nanoparticles at subwavelength distances. The holograms were fabricated from a single subwavelength thin film of silver and demonstrate that the total amount of binary information stored in the plane can exceed the limits of diffraction and that this wavelength modulation can be detected optically in the far field."

See also:
http://spectrum.ieee.org/nanoclast/semiconductors/memory/nanoparticles-enable-new-levels-of-holographic-optical-data-storage- (http://spectrum.ieee.org/nanoclast/semiconductors/memory/nanoparticles-enable-new-levels-of-holographic-optical-data-storage-)

Extract: "In the device, each nanoparticle scatters light into varying colors depending on its size and shape. The scattered light from all the nanoparticles interacts and combines with each other to produce an image.
Among some of the unusual effects that can be produced by this device is its ability to display different images when illuminated with different color light and its ability to produce a multi-color image when multiple light sources are focused on it.
“This hologram may find a wide range of applications in the area of displays, optical data storage, and sensors,” said PhD student Calum Williams, a co-author of the paper. “However, scalable approaches are needed to fulfill the potential of this technology.”"

Very best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 20, 2016, 07:59:30 PM
I have pointed-out elsewhere in this forum that the primary reason for society's poor handling of the climate change problem is our collection inability to see beyond our own ignorance.  Furthermore, in this thread I have touched on mindfulness approaches to better address the problems caused by such ignorance.  However, I have not yet clearly connected my logic on such traditional mindfulness approaches with my points about how AI (or better AW) could interface with humans to better address climate change as a "wick problem".  In particular, in this post I plan to illustrate how an AI/AW-human interface can improve the use of inductive logic to better address climate change.

In this regards, I start by paraphrasing that: "Induction is the glory of science but the scandal of philosophy", where philosophy is one example of the class of "wicked problems" such as climate change.  Second, I point-out that mindfulness techniques use the mind/body connection to create a real-time feedback loop that can be used to reduce the modeling errors and ignorance of one's mind in order to better understand the illusion of ego and the value of cooperation to improve both individual & societal happiness (& sustainability), by reducing the moral hazard associated with the use of inductive logic.  Lastly, I point-out that a AI/human connection could function in a fashion very similar to the well (scientifically) documented mind/body connection, in order to ground human inductive intuition in the reality of facts (accessible by AI), just as bodily sensations better ground the mind in the reality of the moment, thus allowing for better understanding and reduced ignorance.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 22, 2016, 11:09:49 AM
The linked articles indicate that new experiments support David Bohm's "holographic paradigm" (including Implicate order and explicate order) and string theories "holographic principle", both of which are implicit within the Holoberg Interpretation presented in this thread.

http://www.councilchronicle.com/quantum-oddities-orderly-universe/24165/ (http://www.councilchronicle.com/quantum-oddities-orderly-universe/24165/)

Extract: "Though we are at peace with the idea that the quantum world is dominated by randomness, recently spotted quantum oddities may hint at an orderly universe. Researchers believe that quantum mechanics may be the key to proving that the Universe is interconnected after all.
The idea belongs to an American theoretical physicist called David Bohm who suggested several decades ago that despite quantum physics’ weirdness, the reality behind it is astonishingly orderly. We fail to perceive this reality as it is because we lack the proper understanding of how quantum physics really works, Bohm argued.

Still, in the early 90s an experiment dubbed ESSW dismissed Bohm’s view of the quantum world. The experiment discovered so called ‘surreal trajectories’ in photons. Yet, recently a group of researchers conducted by Steinberg repeated the experiment and found that Bohm may be right after all.
Scientists learned that entangled photons could influence one another by changing polarization. In the experiment, a photon traveling through an apparatus at record speeds was able to influence its partner’s polarization from a great distance. In fact the changes in polarization observed in the still photon reflected the moving photon’s trajectories, despite the apparently hazardous nature of the latter’s journey.
The recent experiments have shown that the ESSW analysis in the 90s might have got things wrong because the detector used to measure photons’ trajectories was unreliable on a quantum scale."

See also:
http://www.ibtimes.com/quantum-weirdness-gives-way-intuitive-behavior-new-experiment-2316822 (http://www.ibtimes.com/quantum-weirdness-gives-way-intuitive-behavior-new-experiment-2316822)

Extract: "Now, a new version of the experiment, conducted by Steinberg’s team to incorporate the effect of entanglement, has demonstrated that far from “probabilistic smears,” particles at the quantum level can be seen as behaving something akin to billiard balls rolling along a table, and that the surreal behavior observed in the previous experiment is, in fact, caused by the “spooky” influence of the other particle.
As the Copenhagen interpretation underscores, the standard interpretation of quantum mechanics holds that the inherent uncertainty in measuring a subatomic particle’s position and momentum means that there is no real trajectory between the light source and the screen. The best scientists can hope to do is to calculate a “wave function” that shows the odds of the photon being in any one place at any given time.
The latest experiment, however, sought to test, and provide evidence for, a contrarian and more intuitive interpretation, known as the De Broglie-Bohm theory, which says that the photons do have real trajectories, and that their paths are governed by a “pilot wave” upon which these particles ride."

See also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Implicate_and_explicate_order (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Implicate_and_explicate_order)

Extract: "Implicate order and explicate order are ontological concepts for quantum theory coined by theoretical physicist David Bohm during the early 1980s. They are used to describe two different frameworks for understanding the same phenomenon or aspect of reality. In particular, the concepts were developed in order to explain the bizarre behavior of subatomic particles – behavior difficult to explain by quantum physics.
In his book Wholeness and the Implicate Order, Bohm uses these notions to describe how the same phenomenon might look different, or might be characterized by different principal factors, in different contexts such as at different scales.[1] The implicate order, also referred to as the "enfolded" order, is seen as a deeper and more fundamental order of reality. In contrast, the explicate or "unfolded" order include the abstractions that humans normally perceive. As he writes:
In the enfolded [or implicate] order, space and time are no longer the dominant factors determining the relationships of dependence or independence of different elements. Rather, an entirely different sort of basic connection of elements is possible, from which our ordinary notions of space and time, along with those of separately existent material particles, are abstracted as forms derived from the deeper order. These ordinary notions in fact appear in what is called the "explicate" or "unfolded" order, which is a special and distinguished form contained within the general totality of all the implicate orders (Bohm 1980, p. xv).
….
The implicate order represents the proposal of a general metaphysical concept in terms of which it is claimed that matter and consciousness might both be understood, in the sense that it is proposed that both matter and consciousness: (i) enfold the structure of the whole within each region, and (ii) involve continuous processes of enfoldment and unfoldment. For example, in the case of matter, entities such as atoms may represent continuous enfoldment and unfoldment which manifests as a relatively stable and autonomous entity that can be observed to follow a relatively well-defined path in space-time. In the case of consciousness, Bohm pointed toward evidence presented by Karl Pribram that memories may be enfolded within every region of the brain rather than being localized (for example in particular regions of the brain, cells, or atoms).

Bohm also claimed that "as with consciousness, each moment has a certain explicate order, and in addition it enfolds all the others, though in its own way. So the relationship of each moment in the whole to all the others is implied by its total content: the way in which it 'holds' all the others enfolded within it". Bohm characterises consciousness as a process in which at each moment, content that was previously implicate is presently explicate, and content which was previously explicate has become implicate.

Bohm employed the hologram as a means of characterising implicate order, noting that each region of a photographic plate in which a hologram is observable contains within it the whole three-dimensional image, which can be viewed from a range of perspectives. That is, each region contains a whole and undivided image."


See also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holonomic_brain_theory (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holonomic_brain_theory)

and
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_principle (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holographic_principle)

Extract: "The physical universe is widely seen to be composed of "matter" and "energy". In his 2003 article published in Scientific American magazine, Jacob Bekenstein summarized a current trend started by John Archibald Wheeler, which suggests scientists may "regard the physical world as made of information, with energy and matter as incidentals." Bekenstein asks "Could we, as William Blake memorably penned, 'see a world in a grain of sand,' or is that idea no more than 'poetic license,'"referring to the holographic principle.
Bekenstein's topical overview "A Tale of Two Entropies" describes potentially profound implications of Wheeler's trend, in part by noting a previously unexpected connection between the world of information theory and classical physics. This connection was first described shortly after the seminal 1948 papers of American applied mathematician Claude E. Shannon introduced today's most widely used measure of information content, now known as Shannon entropy. As an objective measure of the quantity of information, Shannon entropy has been enormously useful, as the design of all modern communications and data storage devices, from cellular phones to modems to hard disk drives and DVDs, rely on Shannon entropy."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 22, 2016, 04:24:15 PM
The following linked reference is the paper discussed in my last post:

Dylan H. Mahler, Lee Rozema, Kent Fisher, Lydia Vermeyden, Kevin J. Resch, Howard M. Wiseman and Aephraim Steinberg (19 Feb 2016), "Experimental nonlocal and surreal Bohmian trajectories", Science Advances, Vol. 2, no. 2, e1501466, DOI: 10.1126/science.1501466


http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/2/e1501466 (http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/2/e1501466)

Abstract: "Weak measurement allows one to empirically determine a set of average trajectories for an ensemble of quantum particles. However, when two particles are entangled, the trajectories of the first particle can depend nonlocally on the position of the second particle. Moreover, the theory describing these trajectories, called Bohmian mechanics, predicts trajectories that were at first deemed “surreal” when the second particle is used to probe the position of the first particle. We entangle two photons and determine a set of Bohmian trajectories for one of them using weak measurements and postselection. We show that the trajectories seem surreal only if one ignores their manifest nonlocality."

See also:
http://www.techtimes.com/articles/135422/20160222/researchers-demonstrate-quantum-surrealism-heres-what-it-is-in-english.htm (http://www.techtimes.com/articles/135422/20160222/researchers-demonstrate-quantum-surrealism-heres-what-it-is-in-english.htm)

Extract: "Physicist Howard Wiseman of Griffith University, who proposed the experiment, echoed that the results bolstered the pilot-wave interpretation. "[It's] something that's not recognised by a large part of the physics community.""

and

http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/37532/20160222/quantum-surrealism-demonstrated-new-study-more-useful-think.htm (http://www.scienceworldreport.com/articles/37532/20160222/quantum-surrealism-demonstrated-new-study-more-useful-think.htm)

Extract: "In this case, the researchers showed that surrealism was a consequence of non-locality, which is that particles were able to influence one another instantaneously at a distance. The "incorrect" predictions of trajectories by the entangled photon were actually a consequence of where in their course the entangled photons were measured.

The findings should help researchers understand quantum physics a bit more. And the interpretation should be helpful in some circumstances to visualize real trajectories."

And,
http://phys.org/news/2016-02-quantum-surrealism.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-02-quantum-surrealism.html)

Extract: "Steinberg points out that both the standard interpretation of quantum mechanics and the De Broglie-Bohm interpretation are consistent with experimental evidence, and are mathematically equivalent. But it is helpful in some circumstances to visualize real trajectories, rather than wave function collapses, he says."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 25, 2016, 05:35:15 PM
The linked articles discuss work with quantum dot solids - crystals made out of crystals – that could help usher in a new era in electronics:

http://www.i4u.com/2016/02/106069/can-crystals-quantum-dot-solids-usher-new-era-electronics (http://www.i4u.com/2016/02/106069/can-crystals-quantum-dot-solids-usher-new-era-electronics)

Abstract: "Nature of communication was revolutionized 60 years ago with the single-crystal silicon wafer, making physicists from Cornell University to think the same feat can be achieved again with the quantum dot solids – crystals made out of crystals.
In a study titled "Charge transport and localization in atomically coherent quantum dot solids" and published in the journal Nature Materials, Tobias Hanrath, associate professor in the Robert Frederick Smith School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and graduate student Kevin Whitham, led the research team.
The team created two-dimensional superstructures out of single-crystal building blocks in the process of their experiment, and they explored chemical procedures to synthesize lead-selenium nanocrystals into larger crystals which were ultimately fused together to create atomically-shaped square superlattices."

See also:
http://www.babwnews.com/2016/02/breakthrough-quantum-dot-solids-could-revolutionize-electronics/ (http://www.babwnews.com/2016/02/breakthrough-quantum-dot-solids-could-revolutionize-electronics/)
and
http://www.rdmag.com/news/2016/02/quantum-dot-solids-generations-silicon-wafer (http://www.rdmag.com/news/2016/02/quantum-dot-solids-generations-silicon-wafer)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 27, 2016, 07:29:45 PM
The linked Washington Post article discusses six exponential technologies that will accelerate in 2016: AI, Robotics, self-driving cars, virtual reality, internet of things and space:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2016/01/11/these-6-technologies-will-define-2016/ (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/innovations/wp/2016/01/11/these-6-technologies-will-define-2016/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 28, 2016, 06:41:31 PM
The linked reference discusses an advance in key technology that will likely significantly improve the efficiency of parallel computations in super computers by using Adenosine triphosphate (ATP) to power nanofabricated networks, possibly used in hybrid fashion with conventional and/or quantum super computers:

Dan V. Nicolau, Jr., Mercy Lard, Till Korten, Falco C. M. J. M. van Delft, Malin Persson, Elina Bengtsson, Alf Månsson, Stefan Diez, Heiner Linke and Dan V. Nicolau (Feb 28 2016), "Parallel computation with molecular-motor-propelled agents in nanofabricated networks", PNAS, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1510825113

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2016/02/17/1510825113 (http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2016/02/17/1510825113)

Significance: "Electronic computers are extremely powerful at performing a high number of operations at very high speeds, sequentially. However, they struggle with combinatorial tasks that can be solved faster if many operations are performed in parallel. Here, we present proof-of-concept of a parallel computer by solving the specific instance {2, 5, 9} of a classical nondeterministic-polynomial-time complete (“NP-complete”) problem, the subset sum problem. The computer consists of a specifically designed, nanostructured network explored by a large number of molecular-motor-driven, protein filaments. This system is highly energy efficient, thus avoiding the heating issues limiting electronic computers. We discuss the technical advances necessary to solve larger combinatorial problems than existing computation devices, potentially leading to a new way to tackle difficult mathematical problems."

Abstract: "The combinatorial nature of many important mathematical problems, including nondeterministic-polynomial-time (NP)-complete problems, places a severe limitation on the problem size that can be solved with conventional, sequentially operating electronic computers. There have been significant efforts in conceiving parallel-computation approaches in the past, for example: DNA computation, quantum computation, and microfluidics-based computation. However, these approaches have not proven, so far, to be scalable and practical from a fabrication and operational perspective. Here, we report the foundations of an alternative parallel-computation system in which a given combinatorial problem is encoded into a graphical, modular network that is embedded in a nanofabricated planar device. Exploring the network in a parallel fashion using a large number of independent, molecular-motor-propelled agents then solves the mathematical problem. This approach uses orders of magnitude less energy than conventional computers, thus addressing issues related to power consumption and heat dissipation. We provide a proof-of-concept demonstration of such a device by solving, in a parallel fashion, the small instance {2, 5, 9} of the subset sum problem, which is a benchmark NP-complete problem. Finally, we discuss the technical advances necessary to make our system scalable with presently available technology."

See also:
http://www.mcgill.ca/newsroom/channels/news/building-living-breathing-supercomputers-259294 (http://www.mcgill.ca/newsroom/channels/news/building-living-breathing-supercomputers-259294)

Extract: "The substance that provides energy to all the cells in our bodies, Adenosine triphosphate (ATP), may also be able to power the next generation of supercomputers. That is what an international team of researchers led by Prof. Nicolau, the Chair of the Department of Bioengineering at McGill, believe.



Although the model bio supercomputer was able to very efficiently tackle a complex classical mathematical problem by using parallel computing of the kind used by supercomputers, the researchers recognize that there is still a lot of work ahead to move from the model they have created to a full-scale functional computer.
”This would not have been possible without the enthusiasm and hard work of Prof. Linke, who is also co-corresponding author, and his group, Prof. Prof. Månsson and his group - both from Sweden, Prof. Diez and his group from Germany, and Dr. Van Delft from Philips, The Netherlands. Now that this model exists as a way of successfully dealing with a single problem, there are going to be many others who will follow up and try to push it further, using different biological agents, for example,” says Nicolau. “It’s hard to say how soon it will be before we see a full scale bio super-computer. One option for dealing with larger and more complex problems may be to combine our device with a conventional computer to form a hybrid device. Right now we’re working on a variety of ways to push the research further.”"

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 02, 2016, 07:20:56 PM
In this thread, I have generally discusses what I consider to be possible pro-active adaptation measures; however, the linked reference discusses what I consider to be reactive (e.g. NYC's response to Superstorm Sandy) adaptation measures being taken by global megacities (see attached image), and helps to quantify how insufficient such measures are:

Lucien Georgeson, Mark Maslin, Martyn Poessinouw & Steve Howard (2016), "Adaptation responses to climate change differ between global megacities", Nature Climate Change, doi:10.1038/nclimate2944


http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2944.html (http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2944.html)

Abstract: "Urban areas are increasingly at risk from climate change, with negative impacts predicted for human health, the economy and ecosystems. These risks require responses from cities to improve their resilience. Policymakers need to understand current adaptation spend to plan comprehensively and effectively. Through the measurement of spend in the newly defined ‘adaptation economy’, we analyse current climate change adaptation efforts in ten megacities. In all cases, the adaptation economy remains a small part of the overall economy, representing a maximum of 0.33% of a city’s gross domestic product (here referred to as GDPc). Differences in total spend are significant between cities in developed, emerging and developing countries, ranging from £15 million to £1,600 million. Comparing key subsectors, we demonstrate the differences in adaptation profiles. Developing cities have higher proportional spend on health and agriculture, whereas developed cities have higher spend on energy and water. Spend per capita and percentage of GDPc comparisons more clearly show disparities between cities. Developing country cities spend half the proportion of GDPc and significantly less per capita, suggesting that adaptation spend is driven by wealth rather than the number of vulnerable people. This indicates that current adaptation activities are insufficient in major population centres in developing and emerging economies."

See also:
http://www.carbonbrief.org/huge-divide-in-spending-on-climate-change-adaptation-across-worlds-megaticities (http://www.carbonbrief.org/huge-divide-in-spending-on-climate-change-adaptation-across-worlds-megaticities)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 12, 2016, 11:10:14 AM
Whether you are ready, or not, AI is advancing rapidly as indicated by the linked article on Google's Go-playing AI software "AlphaGo":

http://www.latimes.com/world/asia/la-fg-korea-alphago-20160312-story.html (http://www.latimes.com/world/asia/la-fg-korea-alphago-20160312-story.html)

Extract: "Google's Go-playing software defeated a human champion for the third straight time Saturday to clinch the best-of-five series and establish its superiority in an ancient Chinese game long thought to be the realm of humans.

South Korea's Lee Sedol, one of the world's best Go players, remained winless against AlphaGo, Google DeepMind's artificial intelligence machine, after another close match in Seoul. Despite losing the series, Lee is scheduled to play twice more against AlphaGo, on Sunday and Tuesday.
The highly anticipated showdown between human and machine crushed the pride of Go fans, many of them in Asia, who believed Go would be too complex for machines to master. Some thought it would take at least another decade for computers to beat human Go champions.

Many top Go professionals commented that AlphaGo displayed unorthodox, questionable moves that initially befuddled humans but made sense in hindsight."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on March 18, 2016, 09:53:24 PM
What is the intelligence in this Go program? Any strategical plotting or some theory of mind? I guess it's still just specialized algorithmic brute force. Can a Turing machine become intelligent? Can one construct a mechanical philosopher? -- My hunch is you have to go beyond mechanics and build organismic "wetware" to make matter intelligent.

---------------------------------
Haven't been here for a while... Great to see Satipatthana stuff! But methinks the Satipatthana Sutta serves another (mild) example of Eastern reductionist/mechanist thinking. (Something I complained about last year here.)
Quote
Just as though a skilled butcher or his apprentice had killed a cow and was seated at the crossroads with it cut up into pieces; so too, a bhikkhu reviews this same body … as consisting of elements thus: ‘In this body there are the earth element, the water element, the fire element, and the air element.’
(MN10:12 http://www.wisdompubs.org/landing/satipatthana-sutta (http://www.wisdompubs.org/landing/satipatthana-sutta) )

(I'm not taking this against Buddhist mind training. It' just a minor unimportant flaw. To the contrary, methinks Buddhist mind trainig can be very helpful in these demanding times, if only to gain the strength of mental guts so to be able to look into the abyss without going mad.)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 18, 2016, 10:27:02 PM
What is the intelligence in this Go program? Any strategical plotting or some theory of mind? I guess it's still just specialized algorithmic brute force. Can a Turing machine become intelligent? Can one construct a mechanical philosopher? -- My hunch is you have to go beyond mechanics and build organismic "wetware" to make matter intelligent.

---------------------------------
Haven't been here for a while... Great to see Satipatthana stuff! But methinks the Satipatthana Sutta serves another (mild) example of Eastern reductionist/mechanist thinking. (Something I complained about last year here.)
Quote
Just as though a skilled butcher or his apprentice had killed a cow and was seated at the crossroads with it cut up into pieces; so too, a bhikkhu reviews this same body … as consisting of elements thus: ‘In this body there are the earth element, the water element, the fire element, and the air element.’
(MN10:12 http://www.wisdompubs.org/landing/satipatthana-sutta (http://www.wisdompubs.org/landing/satipatthana-sutta) )

(I'm not taking this against Buddhist mind training. It' just a minor unimportant flaw. To the contrary, methinks Buddhist mind trainig can be very helpful in these demanding times, if only to gain the strength of mental guts so to be able to look into the abyss without going mad.)

I do not have time for a more thoughtful post, but I would like to note that it has been my personal experience that people who do not get much (if anything) from Vipassana meditation, it is primarily because they are looking for something special, something "magic" to be revealed by the meditation.  In Vipassana there is no "magic" only what is (i.e. the truth), so in this regards there is no soul that magically creates wet-philosophy that is different than AI created mechanical philosophy.  If you cannot tell the different source of the philosophy (via a Turing test) then what difference does it make where it came from?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Rubikscube on March 19, 2016, 12:11:17 AM
What is the intelligence in this Go program? Any strategical plotting or some theory of mind? I guess it's still just specialized algorithmic brute force. Can a Turing machine become intelligent? Can one construct a mechanical philosopher? -- My hunch is you have to go beyond mechanics and build organismic "wetware" to make matter intelligent.

AlphaGo is not a "brute-force" searching program. It applies neural networks and is technically a "deep-learner" who taught itself Go by independently analyzing a database of games as well as playing a vast number of games against itself. This approach is basically about mimicking biological brains, adding features such as short-time memory to a computer program. I did in fact recently have a lengthy argument with a programmer working with neural networks about whether a computer program could beat a selection of the world’s best poker players in a similar competition setup. Insisting it cannot happen anytime soon, though, unfortunately having to concede that it is just a matter about when, and not if, an AI entity will be able to outperform a human being in any given type of work (yes that includes all work related to love and friendship. Considering how easy it is to make a human emotionally attached to something as simple as a stuffed animal by just adding a symmetric, humanoid face with big eyes, I find it is astounding that people can believe otherwise).

The problem with computers and robots is not that they eventually will rebel against their human masters, rather the opposite, a computer does exactly what it is told to do, thus theoretically enabling one person to create for himself a perfect totalitarian singularity (the endgame of pure Darwinism (rebranded libertarianism)).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Martin Gisser on March 19, 2016, 12:48:37 AM
Thanks, Rubikscube. This sounds at least quasi-intelligent. But I guess the perceptory apparatus (e.g. database scheme) is still custom made. Would be interesting if this machine can easily be re-wired to play chess. (BTW I know of a 3-player chess. That might be a better test than Go. It is not a duel but a triell...)

ASLR, methinks anatta does not imply that a soulless computer could also be intelligent or even wise. (Hmmm...! Perhaps one could say that a computer has an unchanging essence: being isomorphic to a Turing machine...) Anyway, I don't want to debate AI seriously. I just find it counter my intuition. We just have to wait what comes to see who of us is right.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Rubikscube on March 19, 2016, 05:06:26 AM
Thanks, Rubikscube. This sounds at least quasi-intelligent. But I guess the perceptory apparatus (e.g. database scheme) is still custom made. Would be interesting if this machine can easily be re-wired to play chess. (BTW I know of a 3-player chess. That might be a better test than Go. It is not a duel but a triell...)

Haha, it may indeed be more quasi than intelligent, an honest try though. If I understand this correctly Google DeepMind (the company behind this) claims that AlphaGo wasn't initially programmed to play Go specifically (or make the computer teach itself this specific game), but is rather a learning algorithm specifically trained at Go, which could technically learn to play other games if was fed with such information. I do indeed agree that putting a computer like this into a multiplayer game is an intriguing idea.

A basic introduction to neural networks
http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~bolo/shipyard/neural/local.html (http://pages.cs.wisc.edu/~bolo/shipyard/neural/local.html)

and a very lengthy and comprehensive one (a book actually)
http://neuralnetworksanddeeplearning.com/index.html (http://neuralnetworksanddeeplearning.com/index.html)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 27, 2016, 07:01:33 AM
Practical quantum computers just got one step closer to reality:

http://www.csmonitor.com/Technology/2016/0326/How-a-Fredkin-gate-could-be-a-quantum-leap-forward-for-computing (http://www.csmonitor.com/Technology/2016/0326/How-a-Fredkin-gate-could-be-a-quantum-leap-forward-for-computing)

Extract: "Scientists have built a new computer chip capable of overcoming one of the key obstacles to building quantum computers. The quantum Fredkin gate is a vital piece of quantum computing that was previously too complex to build, but scientists have found a way to simplify the process.
By simplifying one of the basic parts of a quantum computer, the team behind the breakthrough hopes it will make building functional quantum computers more feasible and unlock the massive potential behind the advanced computers.



Fredkin gates are just one part of a quantum computer circuit, a place where two quantum bits can be changed or swapped depending on a third value. But to build one Fredkin gate requires five logic operations. Add in the required amount of Fredkin gates and soon a circuit would be bustling with far too many components to be realistically made.
Scientists from Griffith University and the University of Queensland found a way to construct Fredkin gates while simplifying the amount of logic operations needed. The team used particles of light.
"The research team used the quantum entanglement of photons – particles of light – to implement the controlled-SWAP operation directly," the press release states."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 29, 2016, 10:48:58 PM
The linked Forbes Magazine article indicates that: "Uncertainty About The Future Is More Stressful Than Knowing That The Future Is Going To Suck", and recommends that in inherently uncertain situations mindfulness and meditation is probably the best thing that we can do to navigate through such stressful situations.  Perhaps business is learning the First Noble Truth that suffering exists and that mindfulness can reduce (if not eliminate) that suffering; which hopefully the GOP (as a proxy for business interests) will learn to apply to climate change uncertainty:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2016/03/29/uncertainty-about-the-future-is-more-stressful-than-knowing-that-the-future-is-going-to-suck/#53c7b518454c (http://www.forbes.com/sites/alicegwalton/2016/03/29/uncertainty-about-the-future-is-more-stressful-than-knowing-that-the-future-is-going-to-suck/#53c7b518454c)

Extract: "As Bestmann mentions, there are little things we can invent to help with some of the uncertainty in daily life, like apps and Googling for real-time info. Otherwise, since uncertainty is sort of a given in many other areas, learning how to sit with that feeling (as in mindfulness and meditation) and to navigate through it without coming apart, is probably about the best thing we can do."

See also:
http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160329/ncomms10996/full/ncomms10996.html (http://www.nature.com/ncomms/2016/160329/ncomms10996/full/ncomms10996.html)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 31, 2016, 04:33:59 PM
The linked article discusses another big step forward towards making practical AI computers based on human brain inspired hardware architecture.  Such new architecture requires that computer programs be written differently than current programs, which is most likely why IBM is providing smart guys at LLNL (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory) with the first chips, as they are willing/capable of doing the programming necessary to tackle problems related to national security.

http://www.techtimes.com/articles/145540/20160331/ibms-latest-supercomputer-inspired-human-brain-powerful.htm (http://www.techtimes.com/articles/145540/20160331/ibms-latest-supercomputer-inspired-human-brain-powerful.htm)

Extract: "Serving as its backbone is TrueNorth technology, a one-of-a-kind chip architecture based on neurosynaptic concept, which means it is designed to work like the human brain.
Just as the human brain has neurons that transmit information through electrical impulses and synapses that allow the berve cells to connect and communicate, a TrueNorth processor is equipped with 256 million synapses and 1 million neurons linked together by 5.4 billion transistors, all of which are capable of 46 giga synaptic operations for every second.
The energy requirement? Only 70 milliwatts at 0.8 volts.
LLNL is set to receive 16 of these chips, which will equal to 4 billion synapses and 16 million neurons powered by 2.5 watts – energy similar to that of a hearing aid battery."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 24, 2016, 01:03:50 AM
Prospero:
Our revels now are ended. These our actors,
As I foretold you, were all spirits, and
Are melted into air, into thin air:
And like the baseless fabric of this vision,
The cloud-capp'd tow'rs, the gorgeous palaces,
The solemn temples, the great globe itself,
Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve,
And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on; and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep.

The Tempest Act 4, scene 1, 148–158
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 27, 2016, 05:16:13 PM
AI is already helping to deal with climate change, and other Earth Sciences challenges:

http://ensia.com/features/three-ways-artificial-intelligence-is-helping-to-save-the-world/ (http://ensia.com/features/three-ways-artificial-intelligence-is-helping-to-save-the-world/)

Extract: "One of the places machine learning is turning out to be the most beneficial is in the environmental sciences, which have generated huge amounts of information from monitoring Earth’s various systems — underground aquifers, the warming climate or animal migration, for example. A slew of projects have been popping up in this relatively new field, called computational sustainability, that combine data gathered about the environment with a computer’s ability to discover trends and make predictions about the future of our planet. This is useful to scientists and policy-makers because it can help them develop plans for how to live and survive in our changing world."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 28, 2016, 05:38:12 PM
Anyone who is feeling depressed by climate change news would likely benefit from either Mindfulness meditation and/or therapy:

http://www.hngn.com/articles/198312/20160428/mindfulness-based-cognitive-therapy-reduce-chances-depression-relapse.htm (http://www.hngn.com/articles/198312/20160428/mindfulness-based-cognitive-therapy-reduce-chances-depression-relapse.htm)

Extract: "Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy Can Reduce Chances Of Depression Relapse
A new study has found that Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy can reduce the chances of depression relapse in those with the disorder."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 14, 2016, 04:11:58 AM
Just a quick note to observe that swarm intelligence is becoming more & more practicable:

http://www.techtimes.com/articles/158076/20160513/swarm-intelligence-could-be-gamblers-key-to-betting-heres-how-it-works.htm (http://www.techtimes.com/articles/158076/20160513/swarm-intelligence-could-be-gamblers-key-to-betting-heres-how-it-works.htm)

Extract: "Swarm intelligence seeks to amplify, not replace, human intelligence, with the idea that large groups predict an event outcome better than just one individual can. According to UNU inventor and Unanimous AI chief executive Louis Rosenberg, forcing polarized groups into a swarm lets them find that answer that will satisfy most people."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 15, 2016, 08:20:26 PM
Brian Christian and Tom Griffiths have written a new book entitled: "Algorithms to Live By The Computer Science of Human Decisions".  Once people realize that addressing climate change is a prerequisite to future livable conditions, maybe they will learn to apply such algorithm so as to adjust they lives to allow for a sustainable future:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/thought-matters/algorithms-to-live-by_b_9772622.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/thought-matters/algorithms-to-live-by_b_9772622.html)

Extract: "The next pages begin our journey through some of the biggest challenges faced by computers and human minds alike: how to manage finite space, finite time, limited attention, unknown unknowns, incomplete information, and an unforeseeable future; how to do so with grace and confidence; and how to do so in a community with others who are all simultaneously trying to do the same. We will learn about the fundamental mathematical structure of these challenges and about how computers are engineered—sometimes counter to what we imagine—to make the most of them. And we will learn about how the mind works, about its distinct but deeply related ways of tackling the same set of issues and coping with the same constraints. Ultimately, what we can gain is not only a set of concrete takeaways for the problems around us, not only a new way to see the elegant structures behind even the hairiest human dilemmas, not only a recognition of the travails of humans and computers as deeply conjoined, but something even more profound: a new vocabulary for the world around us, and a chance to learn something truly new about ourselves."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 17, 2016, 09:23:06 PM
In order to better deal with climate change, school children should be taught to use free computational knowledge engines like WolframAlpha so that they can stay current on the state of the art in climate change without undue complexity (as the software handles the math automatically, see the current plot [from the second link] of GMST departures with a pre-industrial baseline as an example that I did in about 2 seconds and which correctly shows that through April 2016 the 12-month running average GMST departure is at 1.246C above pre-industrial):

https://www.wolframalpha.com/ (https://www.wolframalpha.com/)

https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=modeling+climate+change (https://www.wolframalpha.com/input/?i=modeling+climate+change)

See also:
https://reference.wolfram.com/language/guide/MathematicsAndAlgorithmsOverview.html (https://reference.wolfram.com/language/guide/MathematicsAndAlgorithmsOverview.html)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 17, 2016, 09:48:50 PM
One of the lessons from the book: "Algorithms to Live By" is that when faced with a wick problem, to be most effective one should "Dumb it down" and focus exclusively on solutions that give you want you want.  Unfortunately, capitalism is very effective in doing just that by focusing on money while dumbing down sustainability (as being too complex).  Hopefully, school children will learn to be effective by using free algorithms available through the internet (via Google, Facebook, Wolfram etc) to simplify the math of climate change issues so that they can focus on sustainable solutions rather than just on making the most money:


http://us.macmillan.com/algorithmstoliveby/brianchristian (http://us.macmillan.com/algorithmstoliveby/brianchristian)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on May 26, 2016, 05:05:41 PM
 If robots are the future of work, where do humans fit in?
Zoe Williams
http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/24/robots-future-work-humans-jobs-leisure (http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/24/robots-future-work-humans-jobs-leisure)
Quote
Robin Hanson thinks the robot takeover, when it comes, will be in the form of emulations. In his new book, The Age of Em, the economist explains: you take the best and brightest 200 human beings on the planet, you scan their brains and you get robots that to all intents and purposes are indivisible from the humans on which they are based, except a thousand times faster and better.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 04, 2016, 08:31:37 PM
The linked article discusses new theoretical advances that raise the possibility of combining the math of string theory with the methodology of loop quantum gravity, LQG, to develop a new "Theory of Everything", TOE, where string, and LQG, theories can be viewed as opposite sides of the same coin (see attached associated image).  I note that the Holoborg theory/interpretation that I touched on earlier in this thread, considers time and space as derived quantities resulting from a universal network of discrete information. 
Thus it is possible/probable that the final TOE will acknowledge that we live in a universe where time is a construct and that when one fails to acknowledge this and creates a moral hazard via the Tyranny of the Contemporary for climate change, then one cannot escape facing the consequences of ones actions by passing this on to future generations, as time is nothing more than a construct, one experiences the negative consequences that one is seeking to pass on to future generations.

https://www.quantamagazine.org/20160112-string-theory-meets-loop-quantum-gravity/ (https://www.quantamagazine.org/20160112-string-theory-meets-loop-quantum-gravity/)

Extract: "Among the attempts to unify quantum theory and gravity, string theory has attracted the most attention. Its premise is simple: Everything is made of tiny strings. The strings may be closed unto themselves or have loose ends; they can vibrate, stretch, join or split. And in these manifold appearances lie the explanations for all phenomena we observe, both matter and space-time included.

Loop quantum gravity, by contrast, is concerned less with the matter that inhabits space-time than with the quantum properties of space-time itself. In loop quantum gravity, or LQG, space-time is a network. The smooth background of Einstein’s theory of gravity is replaced by nodes and links to which quantum properties are assigned. In this way, space is built up of discrete chunks. LQG is in large part a study of these chunks.

This approach has long been thought incompatible with string theory. Indeed, the conceptual differences are obvious and profound. For starters,
LQG studies bits of space-time, whereas string theory investigates the behavior of objects within space-time.

New theoretical findings have revealed potential similarities between LQG and string theory. A young generation of string theorists has begun to look outside string theory for methods and tools that might be useful in the quest to understand how to create a “theory of everything.” And a still-raw paradox involving black holes and information loss has given everyone a fresh dose of humility.

Moreover, in the absence of experimental evidence for either string theory or LQG, mathematical proof that the two are in fact opposite sides of the same coin would bolster the argument that physicists are progressing toward the correct theory of everything. Combining LQG and string theory would truly make it the only game in town.

LQG is a method, it’s not a theory. It’s a method to think of quantum mechanics and geometry. It’s a method that string theorists can use and are actually using. These things are not incompatible.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 06, 2016, 10:50:18 PM
Neural lace:

http://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-on-neural-lace-2016-6 (http://www.businessinsider.com/elon-musk-on-neural-lace-2016-6)

Extract: "Elon Musk thinks that humans are going to need to add a digital layer of intelligence to our brains to avoid becoming house cats to artificial intelligence.

Neural lace is essentially a wireless brain-computer system.
"I don't love the idea of being a house cat, but what's the solution? I think one of the solutions that seems maybe the best is to add an AI layer," he said. "A third, digital layer that could work well and symbiotically" with the rest of your body.
Nanotechnologists have actually already been working on this concept."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on June 07, 2016, 05:46:37 AM
I would hate being a house cat, i feel so sorry for them when i see em in the windows. Yes, i know about the bird thing, but animals need space to roam, like humans. If I couldn't give them room, I wouldnt have them.

I would much prefer to be a barn cat. I have some, (or actually, they roam far and wide thru many barns and corn cribs and neighbors porches where they get fed by kind hearted people) and they seem to have a good time. (Modulo coyotes, hawks and eagles ...  lotsa things will kill a cat out in the country.) But they have fun, and keep the rodents down in the barn.

So, I for one, welcome our new overlords, and would like to apply for the position of barn cat.

sidd
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 07, 2016, 05:15:03 PM
So, I for one, welcome our new overlords, and would like to apply for the position of barn cat.

sidd,

If you want to be the coolest cat in the barn, you can start by playing cat & mouse with quantum computing at the links provided in the following article.  That way even without any neural lace you will have more in common with the new overlords (which will likely be machine/human Swarm Intelligence, ala the Holoborg Interpretation).  The attached image shows the trend line for Moore's Law, which will soon be replaced/accelerated by a quantum computing trend line (and I note that human brains are certainly quantum computers):

http://www.uloop.com/news/view.php/203670/Quantum-Computing-And-How-You-Can-Get-Involved-Now (http://www.uloop.com/news/view.php/203670/Quantum-Computing-And-How-You-Can-Get-Involved-Now)

Extract: "By exploiting this, quantum computers can calculate things exponentially fast because once you know one thing, the other is given to you.

With this logic, quantum computing can exploit this as a workaround to search for something, such as information in a database, without looking through each and every entry. Scientists are attempting to use this advantage to speed up the times of search engines such as Google and decryption of secure and encrypted information in a matter of seconds. The potential of quantum computing is massive enough to cause a tremendous change in technology and spike up our computing power.

How Do I Get Involved?

Huge companies such as Google, IBM, and Microsoft have released quantum computer simulators to help developers and users who are interested in quantum computing to be able to experiment. You can access these simulators in the links below!

IBM’s quantum computer is definitely recommended because it is actually a quantum computer that can be accessed from your home for experimentation.

Google: http://www.quantumplayground.net (http://www.quantumplayground.net)

Microsoft: http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/research-areas/quantum-computing.aspx (http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/research-areas/quantum-computing.aspx)

IBM: http://www.research.ibm.com/quantum (http://www.research.ibm.com/quantum)

The most exciting part about quantum computing is that scientists are walking an unpaved path into this computing phenomena. Once scientists discover the power to effectively and practically use quantum computing, our computing world will never be the same."

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 09, 2016, 12:07:25 AM

Per the following linked article Google may have a commercially available a small (but scalable) general-purpose/universal quantum computer available in about two years:

R. Barends, A. Shabani, L. Lamata, J. Kelly, A. Mezzacapo, U. Las Heras, R. Babbush, A. G. Fowler, B. Campbell, Yu Chen, Z. Chen, B. Chiaro, A. Dunsworth, E. Jeffrey, E. Lucero, A. Megrant, J. Y. Mutus, M. Neeley, C. Neill, P. J. J. O’Malley, C. Quintana P. Roushan, D. Sank, A. Vainsencher, J. Wenner, T. C. White, E. Solano, H. Neven & John M. Martinis et al. (09 June 2016), "Digitized adiabatic quantum computing with a superconducting circuit", Nature, Volume: 534, Pages: 222–226, doi:10.1038/nature17658

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v534/n7606/full/nature17658.html (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v534/n7606/full/nature17658.html)
&
http://www.nature.com/articles/nature17658.epdf?referrer_access_token=aqU6_fdKVRN2Ni58_S8NN9RgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0OZ9ghpZg--X8LqGksShUmTEpFHjQ9vJcRLdRjhp-XpoPWUbHMLmvja9Pez3kwLNaRT0mWgITLoIsJEPSqVIgwOqUWx6nbhUL2H9rFuAAUCrtT0R0NajLnRX02hVmdNu2UyF8bieRI5pDGT1QWYUqIhC4Shzo3SoLXfBeZ2rvqKYqC1gcABXcZJmSIZmZ5N5yU%3D&tracking_referrer=www.nature.com (http://www.nature.com/articles/nature17658.epdf?referrer_access_token=aqU6_fdKVRN2Ni58_S8NN9RgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0OZ9ghpZg--X8LqGksShUmTEpFHjQ9vJcRLdRjhp-XpoPWUbHMLmvja9Pez3kwLNaRT0mWgITLoIsJEPSqVIgwOqUWx6nbhUL2H9rFuAAUCrtT0R0NajLnRX02hVmdNu2UyF8bieRI5pDGT1QWYUqIhC4Shzo3SoLXfBeZ2rvqKYqC1gcABXcZJmSIZmZ5N5yU%3D&tracking_referrer=www.nature.com)


Abstract: "Quantum mechanics can help to solve complex problems in physics and chemistry, provided they can be programmed in a physical device. In adiabatic quantum computing, a system is slowly evolved from the ground state of a simple initial Hamiltonian to a final Hamiltonian that encodes a computational problem. The appeal of this approach lies in the combination of simplicity and generality; in principle, any problem can be encoded. In practice, applications are restricted by limited connectivity, available interactions and noise. A complementary approach is digital quantum computing, which enables the construction of arbitrary interactions and is compatible with error correction, but uses quantum circuit algorithms that are problem-specific. Here we combine the advantages of both approaches by implementing digitized adiabatic quantum computing in a superconducting system. We tomographically probe the system during the digitized evolution and explore the scaling of errors with system size. We then let the full system find the solution to random instances of the one-dimensional Ising problem as well as problem Hamiltonians that involve more complex interactions. This digital quantum simulation of the adiabatic algorithm consists of up to nine qubits and up to 1,000 quantum logic gates. The demonstration of digitized adiabatic quantum computing in the solid state opens a path to synthesizing long-range correlations and solving complex computational problems. When combined with fault-tolerance, our approach becomes a general-purpose algorithm that is scalable."

See also:
Philip Ball (June 8 2016), "Google moves closer to a universal quantum computer", Nature, doi:10.1038/nature.2016.20032

http://www.nature.com/news/google-moves-closer-to-a-universal-quantum-computer-1.20032 (http://www.nature.com/news/google-moves-closer-to-a-universal-quantum-computer-1.20032)

Extract: "Combining the best of analog and digital approaches could yield a full-scale multipurpose quantum computer

Computer scientists at Google’s research laboratories in Santa Barbara, California, and physicists at the University of California at Santa Barbara, describe their new device online in Nature1.
“It’s terrific work in many respects, and is filled with valuable lessons for the quantum computing community,” says Daniel Lidar, a quantum-computing expert at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles.

The Google device is still very much a prototype. But Lidar says that in a couple of years, devices with more than 40 qubits could become a reality.
“At that point,” he says, “it will become possible to simulate quantum dynamics that is inaccessible on classical hardware, which will mark the advent of ‘quantum supremacy’.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 09, 2016, 01:01:08 AM
Google's Deep Mind has been incentivized to teach itself how play and win games that are difficult to master:

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/google-ai-montezuma-revenge (http://www.wired.co.uk/article/google-ai-montezuma-revenge)

Extract: "Google's Deep Mind has learned how to play yet another game - this time because it had been 'incentivised' to want to win.
"Intrinsic rewards" meant the AI obtained "significantly improved exploration in a number of hard games, including the infamously difficult Montezuma's Revenge", wrote Google researchers in a paper.
Intrinsic motivation (IM) algorithms typically use signals to make the AI more 'curious' and are inspired by classic, human-based psychological ideas."



For a pdf of the associated paper see:
https://arxiv.org/pdf/1606.01868v1.pdf (https://arxiv.org/pdf/1606.01868v1.pdf)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Laurent on June 10, 2016, 09:29:50 PM
Climate change could force huge migrations for people and animals living near the equator
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/06/09/climate-change-could-force-huge-migrations-for-people-and-animals-living-near-the-equator/?postshare=2341465483441770&tid=ss_tw (https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/06/09/climate-change-could-force-huge-migrations-for-people-and-animals-living-near-the-equator/?postshare=2341465483441770&tid=ss_tw)
Quote
t’s no surprise that populations living in the Arctic — whether human, animal or otherwise — have become the poster children for global warming’s terrible consequences. The Arctic is warming faster than anywhere else on the planet, and its rapid ice loss has not only become a major contributor to global sea-level rise, but is also destroying habitats for polar bears and people alike. 

But a new study, published Thursday in the the journal Scientific Reports, argues that, while the stakes at the poles are high, we may want to be paying a little more attention to what’s going on near the equator, as well. The research suggests that even a moderate amount of warming could force populations in the tropics to undergo huge migrations — longer journeys than they’d have to take if they lived anywhere else on the planet — to get to cooler ground.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 14, 2016, 12:42:56 AM
The linked article indicates that AI development is likely to be gradual (over decades) and open (within limits, but I note that Elon Musk has initiated OpenAI which will provide open source software to the public) and will also involve "enhancing" the human mind (to work interactively with increasingly strong AI):

http://www.wsj.com/articles/whats-next-for-artificial-intelligence-1465827619 (http://www.wsj.com/articles/whats-next-for-artificial-intelligence-1465827619)

Extract: "The greatest scientific challenges of our times, and it will require the sharing of ideas across countries, companies, labs and academia. Progress in AI is likely to be gradual—and open.

Strong AI appears to be on the horizon, but for now the human mind is the only one we have. Enhancing our own intelligence is the first step toward creating—and successfully coexisting with—the intelligent machines of the future."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 15, 2016, 12:26:35 AM
The linked article discusses new theoretical advances that raise the possibility of combining the math of string theory with the methodology of loop quantum gravity, LQG, to develop a new "Theory of Everything", TOE, where string, and LQG, theories can be viewed as opposite sides of the same coin (see attached associated image).

We may (or may not) need a new Theory of Everything, sooner rather than later, if CERN announces a new particle find (maybe in the next few days):

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/is-particle-physics-about-to-crack-wide-open/ (http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/is-particle-physics-about-to-crack-wide-open/)

Extract: "Hints of an unexpected new particle could be confirmed within days—and if it is, the Standard Model could be going down"

http://www.sciencealert.com/evidence-of-a-new-particle-that-could-break-the-standard-model-of-physics-is-mounting (http://www.sciencealert.com/evidence-of-a-new-particle-that-could-break-the-standard-model-of-physics-is-mounting)

Extract: "As Davide Castelvecchi and Elizabeth Gibney report for Nature, the new analysis of the the statistical significance of the CMS bump has now gone up from 1.2 to 1.6 sigma, while ATLAS’s statistical significance now sits at 1.9 sigma after corrections.
Sample says the chance of a 1.9 sigma effect being a fluke is the same as flipping a five heads in a row - hard, but not impossible. According to the rules of science, you can’t say something’s a discovery until you hit that 5-sigma mark - the same as tossing 21 heads in a row.

As Castelvecchi and Gibney write for Nature, "by June, or August at the latest, CMS and ATLAS should have enough data to either make a statistical fluctuation go away - if that’s what the excess is - or confirm a discovery", and we can’t wait."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 18, 2016, 06:47:52 PM
To help you adapt quickly enough to meet the challenges of both the Anthropocene and the technological singularity, there is now a Singularity University online covering technology, science, health and future impacts with linked articles

http://singularityu.org/overview/ (http://singularityu.org/overview/)

E.g. see:
http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/17/long-promised-artificial-intelligence-is-looming-and-its-going-to-be-amazing/ (http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/17/long-promised-artificial-intelligence-is-looming-and-its-going-to-be-amazing/)

Extract: "There have been more advances in AI over the past three years than there were in the previous three decades.
Even technology leaders such as Apple have been caught off guard by the rapid evolution of machine learning, the technology that powers AI. At its recent Worldwide Developers Conference, Apple opened up its AI systems so that independent developers could help it create technologies that rival what Google and Amazon have already built. Apple is way behind.

AI has applications in every area in which data are processed and decisions required. Wired founding editor Kevin Kelly likened AI to electricity: a cheap, reliable, industrial-grade digital smartness running behind everything. He said that it “will enliven inert objects, much as electricity did more than a century ago. Everything that we formerly electrified we will now ‘cognitize.’ This new utilitarian AI will also augment us individually as people (deepening our memory, speeding our recognition) and collectively as a species. There is almost nothing we can think of that cannot be made new, different, or interesting by infusing it with some extra IQ. In fact, the business plans of the next 10,000 start-ups are easy to forecast: Take X and add AI. This is a big deal, and now it’s here.”

Though some people, such as futurist Ray Kurzweil, see us using AI to augment our capabilities and evolve together, others, such as Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking, fear that AI will usurp us. We really don’t know where all this will go.
What is certain is that AI is here and making amazing things possible."

E.g. see:

http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/14/what-happens-if-society-is-too-slow-to-absorb-technological-change/?utm_source=Trending&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=content%20access (http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/14/what-happens-if-society-is-too-slow-to-absorb-technological-change/?utm_source=Trending&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=content%20access)

Extract: "It’s tempting to dub 2016 the "Year of Artificial Intelligence."
This is the year AI has hit the public consciousness hard. Whether calls for universal basic income in the face of an automation tsunami or alarms over the loss of privacy when everything you do can be monitored and analyzed, people are discussing and debating AI more than ever in an effort to quell their dystopian fears about humanity’s future.

Speaking from the Exponential Finance conference, Salim Ismail, Singularity University’s founding executive director and global ambassador, offered a more optimistic view.
"We’re augmenting the human experience with AI, not taking away from or replicating it," Ismail said. "We tend to overemphasize the concern.

To Ismail, the true challenge with advancing technologies isn’t the threats they impose, but more that society is sluggish at absorbing and making use of the technology at its current pace.

We're at a critical juncture in the public conversation about artificial intelligence. Beyond the concerns, threats, and fears are a wealth of opportunities to utilize AI to improve human conditions and extend life spans. It's simply a matter of adapting, something that is altogether human."

See also:
http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/18/this-weeks-awesome-stories-from-around-the-web-through-june-18th/?utm_source=Latest&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=content%20access (http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/18/this-weeks-awesome-stories-from-around-the-web-through-june-18th/?utm_source=Latest&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=content%20access)

Edit: For those who are still concerned about the impacts of AI on humanity, I note that in addition to increased education and open sourcing of AI code, I believe that the increased use of mindfulness meditation is perhaps the single best defense against the potential ill effects of AI.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 07, 2016, 10:58:43 PM
Here is a link to SingularityHub's June 9 2016 article entitled: "Ray Kurzweil’s Four Big Insights for Predicting the Future".  Whether exponential growth leads to overshoot societal collapse, or to a sustainable future society depends on how wise Homo Sapiens Sapiens really turns out to be:

http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/09/ray-kurzweils-four-big-insights-for-predicting-the-future/ (http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/09/ray-kurzweils-four-big-insights-for-predicting-the-future/)

Extract: "… we explore three technological areas Kurzweil believes are poised to change our world the most this century: genetics, nanotechnology and robotics/AI.
The genetics revolution will allow us to reprogram our own biology. The nanotechnology revolution will allow us to manipulate matter at the molecular and atomic scale. The robotics revolution will allow us to create a greater than human non-biological intelligence."

See:
http://www.siliconbeat.com/2016/05/31/google-chat-bot-coming-year-renowned-inventor-says/ (http://www.siliconbeat.com/2016/05/31/google-chat-bot-coming-year-renowned-inventor-says/)

Extract: "Google will let you turn yourself into a bot, Ray Kurzweil says"

Also see:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 27, 2016, 12:22:42 PM
While Moore's law is rapidly coming to an end; the linked articles indicate that there are still paths forward for continued growth to realize the coming 4th Industrial Revolution, with regards to both the Internet of Things (IoT) and AI; until quantum computing gets up to speed:


http://www.techrepublic.com/article/moores-law-dead-in-2021-heres-what-the-next-revolution-will-mean/ (http://www.techrepublic.com/article/moores-law-dead-in-2021-heres-what-the-next-revolution-will-mean/)

Extract: “The news that transistors will essentially stop shrinking after 2021 is a big deal. Being that Moore's Law only accounts for the number of transistors in a circuit, it could very well be meeting its demise as the de facto measure of growth in the computing industry. This lead many to ask where the industry will go after Moore's Law.
Hanselman said he believes there's a bigger question to ask: "What are we doing with this kind of computing power?"
Fitting more transistors on a wafer is a useful measure, he said, but we need to better understand how we are designing the systems that are leveraging those transistors. After 2021, we may no longer be able to increase the number of transistors on a particular die, but the cost will continue to drop, which may be an even bigger catalyst.
"As we look toward technologies like the Internet of Things and various means of dispersed computing, we now start to make it very inexpensive to put an awful lot of processing horsepower into all sorts of things that, today, are cost prohibitive," Hanselman said. "And that, I think, is probably the larger revolution that continues, even though we may taper off the advances that Moore's Law has afforded us for so long."


http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/232342-moores-law-scaling-dead-by-2021-to-be-replaced-by-3d-integration (http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/232342-moores-law-scaling-dead-by-2021-to-be-replaced-by-3d-integration)


Extract: “Moore’s law scaling dead by 2021, to be replaced by 3D integration

...

… while the ITRS’ executive summary makes extensive predictions regarding future device frequencies, bandwidths, and operating characteristics at the data center, mobile, and Internet of Everything (the proposed successor to the Internet of Things), it does not attempt to predict the future of conventional desktops and laptops. The closest it comes is predicting that by 2029 the average mobile processor will contain 25 application processors and 303 GPU cores, with a max single-component frequency of 4.7GHz (presumably burst frequency).

The implications of the report are clear: Those who seek significantly improved CPU performance will do best to seek it via new computing architectures, improved multi-threading, or improved memory performance in general — not via improvements to raw clock speed. With Intel stuck in the doldrums when it comes to providing architectural improvements, we wouldn’t hold our breath on this front.


https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601441/moores-law-is-dead-now-what/ (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601441/moores-law-is-dead-now-what/)


Extract: “But in a few years technology companies may have to work harder to bring us advanced new use cases for computers. The continual cramming of more silicon transistors onto chips, known as Moore’s Law, has been the feedstock of exuberant innovation in computing. Now it looks to be slowing to a halt.
“We have to ask, is this going to be a problem for areas like mobile devices, data centers, and self-driving cars?” says Thomas Wenisch, an assistant professor at the University of Michigan. “I think yes, but on different timescales.”



…  Intel pushed back its next transistor technology, with features as small as 10 nanometers, from 2016 to late 2017. The company has also decided to increase the time between future generations (see “Intel Puts the Brakes on Moore’s Law”). And a technology roadmap for Moore’s Law maintained by an industry group, including the world’s largest chip makers, is being scrapped. Intel has suggested silicon transistors can only keep shrinking for another five years.



“For the last three years we’ve seen a kind of stagnation,” says Simon. That’s bad news for research programs reliant on supercomputers, such as efforts to understand climate change, ...

Simon says the coming plateau in transistor density will stir more interest in redrawing the basic architecture of computers among supercomputer and data-center designers. Getting rid of certain design features dating from the 1940s could unlock huge efficiency gains (see “Machine Dreams”). Yet taking advantage of those would require rethinking the design of many types of software, and would require programmers to change their habits.
Whatever kind of computer you’re interested in, the key question is whether the creative avenues left open to computing companies can provide similar payoffs to Moore’s Law after it ends, says Neil Thompson, an assistant professor at MIT Sloan School. “We know that those other things matter, but the question is, are they of the same scale?” he says.”


See also:
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601102/intel-puts-the-brakes-on-moores-law/ (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601102/intel-puts-the-brakes-on-moores-law/)

&

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601195/a-2-billion-chip-to-accelerate-artificial-intelligence/ (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601195/a-2-billion-chip-to-accelerate-artificial-intelligence/)


Extract: “At a company event in San Jose, he said, “For the first time we designed a [graphics-processing] architecture dedicated to accelerating AI and to accelerating deep learning.” Nvidia spent more than $2 billion on R&D to produce the new chip, said Huang. It has a total of 15 billion transistors, roughly three times as many as Nvidia’s previous chips. Huang said an artificial neural network powered by the new chip could learn from incoming data 12 times as fast as was possible using Nvidia's previous best chip.
Deep-learning researchers from Facebook, Microsoft, and other companies that Nvidia granted early access to the new chip said they expect it to accelerate their progress by allowing them to work with larger collections of neurons.
“I think we’re going to be able to go quite a bit larger than we have been able to in the past, like 30 times bigger,” said Bryan Catanzero, who works on deep learning at the Chinese search company Baidu. Increasing the size of neural networks has previously enabled major jumps in the smartness of software. For example, last year Microsoft managed to make software that beats humans at recognizing objects in photos by creating a much larger neural network.
Huang of Nvidia said that the new chip is already in production and that he expects cloud-computing companies to start using it this year. IBM, Dell, and HP are expected to sell it inside servers starting next year.”

See also:
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/540851/microsoft-says-programmable-chips-will-make-ai-software-smarter/ (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/540851/microsoft-says-programmable-chips-will-make-ai-software-smarter/)

&

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/536786/machine-dreams/ (https://www.technologyreview.com/s/536786/machine-dreams/)



Regarding Quantum Computing see:

http://www.siliconbeat.com/2016/05/04/moores-law-doubt-eyes-turn-quantum-computing/ (http://www.siliconbeat.com/2016/05/04/moores-law-doubt-eyes-turn-quantum-computing/)


Extract: “Industry experts from around the world who have been working together for years for forecast technology advances in the tech industry are throwing in the towel. The next version of the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors, which is produced jointly by the semiconductor industry associations of the United States, Europe, Japan, South Korea and Taiwan, will be the last, the New York Times reported.
The reason: the industry can no longer count on silicon chip technology advancing like clockwork as Intel co-founder Gordon Moore predicted back in 1965.
“The end of Moore’s Law is what led to this,” Thomas M. Conte, a computer scientist at the Georgia Institute of Technology, told the Times.
Conte and other experts are working on a replacement for the forecasts that will include other types of technologies, including so-called quantum computers.



Some experts think there are ways out of the future — just not with silicon-based chips.
Chip experts are already exploring — and in some cases already producing — chips made of materials other than silicon. One material considered promising is graphene, which is a form of carbon.
Another possibility is to ditch the cut-and-dry, black-and-white, binary computer architecture for the weird world of quantum mechanics. Some computer scientists are already pioneering computers that are built around quantum bits, or “qubits.””
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 27, 2016, 12:46:54 PM
As a follow-on to my last few posts, I provided the following related links, indicating that the acceleration to the 4th Industrial Revolution will not be slowed by the dead of Moore's Law:


http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/09/ray-kurzweils-four-big-insights-for-predicting-the-future/ (http://singularityhub.com/2016/06/09/ray-kurzweils-four-big-insights-for-predicting-the-future/)


Extract: “... after decades of going strong, it looks like Moore's Law might be running out of steam. But does that mean it’s the end of exponential progress in computers?
Kurzweil is confident the answer is no.


http://www.forbes.com/sites/gregsatell/2016/06/03/3-reasons-to-believe-the-singularity-is-near/#23ffbf211cbe (http://www.forbes.com/sites/gregsatell/2016/06/03/3-reasons-to-believe-the-singularity-is-near/#23ffbf211cbe)

Extract: “Kurzweil has pointed out that microprocessors are in fact the fifth paradigm of information processing, replacing earlier technologies such as electromechanical relays, vacuum tubes and transistors. He also argues that the numbers of transistors on a chip is a fairly arbitrary way to measure performance and suggests to look the number of calculations per $1000 instead.
And it turns out that he’s right. While the process of cramming more transistors on silicon wafers is indeed slowing down, we’re finding a variety of ways to speed up overall performance, such as quantum computing, neuromorphic chips and 3D stacking. We can expect progress to continue accelerating, at least for the next few decades.

The idea of approaching a technological singularity is both exciting and scary. While the prospects of technologies that are hundreds of times more powerful than what we have today will open up completely new possibilities, there are also inherent dangers. How autonomous should we allow robots to become? Which genes are safe to edit and which are not?
Beyond opening up a Pandora’s box of forces that we may not fully understand, there is already evidence that technology is destroying jobs, stagnating incomes and increasing inequality. As the process accelerates, we will begin to face problems technology cannot help us with, such as the social strife created by those left behind as well as others in developing countries who will feel newly empowered and demand a greater political voice.
We will also have to change how we view work. Much like in the industrial revolution when machines replaced physical labor, new technologies are now replacing cognitive tasks. Humans, therefore, will have to become more adept at things that machines can’t do, namely dealing with other humans, and social skills will trump cognitive skills in the marketplace.
The truth is that the future of technology is all too human. While technologies will continue to become exponentially more powerful, the decisions we make are still our own.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 29, 2016, 05:00:07 PM
The linked article indicates how blockchain technology could be used to decentralize the energy grid, thus facilitating the use of sustainable energy:

http://www.fastcoexist.com/3058380/world-changing-ideas/how-blockchain-technology-could-decentralize-the-energy-grid (http://www.fastcoexist.com/3058380/world-changing-ideas/how-blockchain-technology-could-decentralize-the-energy-grid)

Extract: ” One day, the energy grid could look completely different than it does today. Instead of big power plants sending electrons over long distances to people's homes, we might generate more power locally using solar panels, and homeowners might become makers and traders of power as well as passive consumers.

If so, blockchain technology could help keep track of electrons flowing through the system, energy futurists say. Just as the blockchain has allowed people to track and authenticate Bitcoin transactions, it could help mediate transactions of energy units through a cooperative, decentralized network, they believe."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 01, 2016, 07:54:55 PM
It is my belief that in the future Maxwell's Demon (as a metaphor for the relationship between the extraction of work from a system and the information about this system) will not only allow for the design of more efficient cooling & energy extraction systems; but will also facilitate the use of AI (& of associated humans who successfully use mindfulness meditation) to create a more sustainable global socio-economic system (with less waste by improved use of information):

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/physicists-test-maxwells-demon-with-beams-of-light-2 (http://motherboard.vice.com/read/physicists-test-maxwells-demon-with-beams-of-light-2)

Extract: "The demon’s ability to create this temperature difference without the expenditure of work appeared to Maxwell to be in violation of the second law of thermodynamics, which states that two bodies of different temperature, when brought into contact with one another in isolation from the rest of the universe, will establish a thermodynamic equilibrium. Another way of putting this is that in an isolated system, entropy never decreases—although Maxwell’s hypothetical did in fact seem to allow the entropy of the system to decrease.
In the years since Maxwell initially proposed his hypothetical, physicists have managed to satisfactorily explain away the evident paradox of Maxwell’s demon. According to some of these physicists’ explanations, although Maxwell’s demon is not directly doing work on the system, it is extracting information about the system by sorting the molecules. The process of extracting this information about the system is a form of work, and therefore the entropy of the system does in fact increase in accordance with the second law of thermodynamics.
Although physicists were able to show that Maxwell’s paradox didn’t actually violate the second law of thermodynamics, the exact nature of the relationship between the extraction of work from a system and the information about this system acquired through measurements which explained the paradox was not that well understood. This was the relationship that the Oxford team hoped to elucidate with their photonic demon.



According to the team, its experiment is the first step toward gaining a better understanding of how thermodynamics plays out on microscales. A better understanding of the link between information and thermodynamics could have a variety of real world applications, ranging from more efficient cooling and energy extraction systems to application in quantum information technologies.

“Personally I think that sort of technology will have a real impact on meeting the energy challenge facing the world,” said Dahlsten. “We are already thinking of ways in which features such as entanglement can be introduced in future experiments based on this one, as our interests gravitate around quantum information.”"

See also:
http://phys.org/news/2016-02-physicists-photonic-maxwell-demon.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-02-physicists-photonic-maxwell-demon.html)

&

Mihai D. Vidrighin, et al. "Photonic Maxwell's Demon." Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.050401

http://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.050401 (http://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.050401)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 01, 2016, 09:47:12 PM
To illustrate the connection between Maxwell's Demon and quantum entanglement, I provide the following two linked references:

Experimental entanglement-enhanced work extraction based on a Maxwell's demon
Authors: Mario A. Ciampini, Luca Mancino, Adeline Orieux, Caterina Vigliar, Paolo Mataloni, Mauro Paternostro, Marco Barbieri
(Submitted on 25 Jan 2016)

http://arxiv.org/abs/1601.06796 (http://arxiv.org/abs/1601.06796)

Abstract: "The relation between the theory of entanglement and thermodynamics is very tight: a thermodynamic theory of quantum entanglement, as well as the establishment of rigorous formal connections between the laws of thermodynamics and the phenomenology of entanglement are currently open areas of investigation. In this quest, an interesting problem is embodied by the role played by entanglement in processes of work extraction from a working medium embodied by quantum information carriers. In this work, we experimentally address the question "Is there any intrinsic advantage for work extraction given by the use of an entangled working medium?". By addressing work-extraction protocols based on a mechanism intimately linked to the paradigm of Maxwell's daemon, and implementing suitably designed multi-photon optical interferometers, we demonstrate experimentally the intrinsic advantages for such tasks provided by bipartite and genuine multipartite entanglement. We highlight the unique nature of such tests by comparing their performance to standard tests for the inseparability of multi-photon state resources. Our work contributes strongly to the ongoing efforts in establishing photonic systems as a platform for experiments for information thermodynamics."


&

Maxwell's demon based on a single qubit
J. P. Pekola, D. S. Golubev, and D. V. Averin
Phys. Rev. B 93, 024501 – Published 5 January 2016

http://journals.aps.org/prb/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevB.93.024501 (http://journals.aps.org/prb/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevB.93.024501)

Abstract: "We propose and analyze Maxwell's demon based on a single qubit with avoided level crossing. Its operation cycle consists of adiabatic drive to the point of minimum energy separation, measurement of the qubit state, and conditional feedback. We show that the heat extracted from the bath at temperature T  can ideally approach the Landauer limit of k B Tln2  per cycle even in the quantum regime. Practical demon efficiency is limited by the interplay of Landau-Zener transitions and coupling to the bath. We suggest that an experimental demonstration of the demon is fully feasible using one of the standard superconducting qubits."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 01, 2016, 10:15:06 PM
As a follow-on to my last few posts, I provided the following related links, indicating that the acceleration to the 4th Industrial Revolution will not be slowed by the dead of Moore's Law:

Heterostructure devices, may help reduce the future cost of computing within the next 10 years:

K. S. Novoselov et al. 2D materials and van der Waals heterostructures, Science (2016). DOI: 10.1126/science.aac9439


http://science.sciencemag.org/content/353/6298/aac9439 (http://science.sciencemag.org/content/353/6298/aac9439)

Abstract: "The physics of two-dimensional (2D) materials and heterostructures based on such crystals has been developing extremely fast. With these new materials, truly 2D physics has begun to appear (for instance, the absence of long-range order, 2D excitons, commensurate-incommensurate transition, etc.). Novel heterostructure devices—such as tunneling transistors, resonant tunneling diodes, and light-emitting diodes—are also starting to emerge. Composed from individual 2D crystals, such devices use the properties of those materials to create functionalities that are not accessible in other heterostructures. Here we review the properties of novel 2D crystals and examine how their properties are used in new heterostructure devices."

See also:
http://phys.org/news/2016-07-two-dimensional-materials-revolutionary-graphene.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-07-two-dimensional-materials-revolutionary-graphene.html)

Extract: "Writing in Science, leading 2D materials researchers estimate that research on combining materials of just a few atomic layers in stacks called heterostructures is at the same stage that graphene was 10 years ago, and can expect the same rapid progress graphene has experienced."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 04, 2016, 04:00:30 AM

Per the following linked article Google may have a commercially available a small (but scalable) general-purpose/universal quantum computer available in about two years:

R. Barends, A. Shabani, L. Lamata, J. Kelly, A. Mezzacapo, U. Las Heras, R. Babbush, A. G. Fowler, B. Campbell, Yu Chen, Z. Chen, B. Chiaro, A. Dunsworth, E. Jeffrey, E. Lucero, A. Megrant, J. Y. Mutus, M. Neeley, C. Neill, P. J. J. O’Malley, C. Quintana P. Roushan, D. Sank, A. Vainsencher, J. Wenner, T. C. White, E. Solano, H. Neven & John M. Martinis et al. (09 June 2016), "Digitized adiabatic quantum computing with a superconducting circuit", Nature, Volume: 534, Pages: 222–226, doi:10.1038/nature17658


While it may be debatable about which team is the first to create a general purpose small programmable quantum computer; nevertheless, it is fair to say that such computers are coming closer and closer to being a commercial reality:

S. Debnath, N. M. Linke,   C. Figgatt, K. A. Landsman, K. Wright & C. Monroe (04 August 2016), "Demonstration of a small programmable quantum computer with atomic qubits", Nature 536, 63–66  doi:10.1038/nature18648

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v536/n7614/full/nature18648.html (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v536/n7614/full/nature18648.html)

Abstract: "Quantum computers can solve certain problems more efficiently than any possible conventional computer. Small quantum algorithms have been demonstrated on multiple quantum computing platforms, many specifically tailored in hardware to implement a particular algorithm or execute a limited number of computational paths. Here we demonstrate a five-qubit trapped-ion quantum computer that can be programmed in software to implement arbitrary quantum algorithms by executing any sequence of universal quantum logic gates. We compile algorithms into a fully connected set of gate operations that are native to the hardware and have a mean fidelity of 98 per cent. Reconfiguring these gate sequences provides the flexibility to implement a variety of algorithms without altering the hardware. As examples, we implement the Deutsch–Jozsa and Bernstein–Vazirani algorithms with average success rates of 95 and 90 per cent, respectively. We also perform a coherent quantum Fourier transform on five trapped-ion qubits for phase estimation and period finding with average fidelities of 62 and 84 per cent, respectively. This small quantum computer can be scaled to larger numbers of qubits within a single register, and can be further expanded by connecting several such modules through ion shuttling or photonic quantum channels."

See also:

http://phys.org/news/2016-08-programmable-ions-stage-general-purpose-quantum.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-08-programmable-ions-stage-general-purpose-quantum.html)

Extract: "Making a quantum computer that can run arbitrary algorithms requires the right kind of physical system and a suite of programming tools. Atomic ions, confined by fields from nearby electrodes, are among the most promising platforms for meeting these needs.
In a paper published as the cover story in Nature on August 4, researchers working with Christopher Monroe, a Fellow of the Joint Quantum Institute and the Joint Center for Quantum Information and Computer Science at the University of Maryland, introduced the first fully programmable and reconfigurable quantum computer module. The new device, dubbed a module because of its potential to connect with copies of itself, takes advantage of the unique properties offered by trapped ions to run any algorithm on five quantum bits, or qubits—the fundamental unit of information in a quantum computer."

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 04, 2016, 04:23:02 AM
For other news on quantum computing, see the following linked articles:

http://phys.org/news/2016-07-russian-physicists-approach-quantum.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-07-russian-physicists-approach-quantum.html)


Extract: "Physicists from MIPT and the Russian Quantum Center have developed an easier method to create a universal quantum computer using multilevel quantum systems (qudits), each one of which is able to work with multiple "conventional" quantum elements – qubits.

Professor Vladimir Man'ko, Aleksey Fedorov and Evgeny Kiktenko have published the results of their studies of multilevel quantum systems in a series of papers in Physical Review A, Physics Letters A, and also Quantum Measurements and Quantum Metrology.

"In our studies, we demonstrated that correlations similar to those used for quantum information technologies in composite quantum systems also occur in non-composite systems – systems which we suppose may be easier to work with in certain cases. In our latest paper we proposed a method of using entanglement between internal degrees of freedom of a single eight-level system to implement the protocol of quantum teleportation, which was previously implemented experimentally for a system of three two-level systems," says Vladimir Man'ko."

&

http://www.seeker.com/virtual-light-particles-may-boost-quantum-computing-1957488436.html (http://www.seeker.com/virtual-light-particles-may-boost-quantum-computing-1957488436.html)


Extract: "A single photon can excite two or more atoms at the same time, scientists found. And the light particle would do so in a very counterintuitive way, by summoning one or more companion photons out of nothingness.

If you think of particles of light, or photons, as billiard balls, it makes intuitive sense that a single photon can excite a single atom.

The new, less intuitive finding depends on the strange nature of quantum mechanics, and might help improve advanced machines known as quantum computers, researchers said. Prior work suggested that such machines could simultaneously perform more calculations in one instant than there are atoms in the universe.

For decades, physicists have known that atoms could each absorb one or more photons, with each photon boosting an atom to a higher-energy state. Scientists have also long known that atoms could each spit out one or more photons, with each loss dropping an atom to a lower-energy state.

This previous research into two-photon absorption and emission led senior study author Salvatore Savasta, a theoretical physicist at the University of Messina in Italy, to wonder if two atoms could together absorb or emit single photons. He and his colleagues developed computer models to figure out whether such events were possible, at least theoretically."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 05, 2016, 05:33:05 PM
Steady progress is being made toward building practicable commercial quantum computers:

C. J. Ballance et al, High-Fidelity Quantum Logic Gates Using Trapped-Ion Hyperfine Qubits, Physical Review Letters (2016). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.060504 , On Arxiv: http://arxiv.org/abs/1512.04600 (http://arxiv.org/abs/1512.04600)

http://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.060504 (http://journals.aps.org/prl/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevLett.117.060504)

Abstract: "We demonstrate laser-driven two-qubit and single-qubit logic gates with respective fidelities 99.9(1)% and 99.9934(3)%, significantly above the ≈99%  minimum threshold level required for fault-tolerant quantum computation, using qubits stored in hyperfine ground states of calcium-43 ions held in a room-temperature trap. We study the speed-fidelity trade-off for the two-qubit gate, for gate times between 3.8  μs  and 520  μs , and develop a theoretical error model which is consistent with the data and which allows us to identify the principal technical sources of infidelity."

see also:

http://phys.org/news/2016-08-record-breaking-logic-gate-important-milestone.html (http://phys.org/news/2016-08-record-breaking-logic-gate-important-milestone.html)

Extract: "Professor Lucas added: 'Achieving a logic gate with 99.9% precision is another important milestone on the road to developing a quantum computer. A quantum logic gate on its own does not constitute a quantum computer, but you can't build the computer without them.
'An analogy from conventional computing hardware would be that we have finally worked out how to build a transistor with good enough performance to make logic circuits, but the technology for wiring thousands of those transistors together to build an electronic computer is still in its infancy.' "
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 26, 2016, 01:52:29 AM
The linked reference not only provides possible insights in how to move beyond the Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics and how to unite the General Theory of Relativity with Quantum Theory:

Leonard Susskind (2016), "Copenhagen vs Everett, Teleportation, and ER=EPR"

http://arxiv.org/pdf/1604.02589v2.pdf (http://arxiv.org/pdf/1604.02589v2.pdf)

Abstract: "Quantum gravity may have as much to tell us about the foundations and interpretation of quantum mechanics as it does about gravity. The Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics and Everett's Relative State Formulation are complementary descriptions which in a sense are dual to one another. My purpose here is to discuss this duality in the light of the of ER=EPR conjecture."


Extract: "Sooner or later we will have to give up the security of an asymptotically cold boundary, and formulate a theory in which the universe is a highly interconnected network of entangled subsystems, with no preferred uber-observer. I expect that when this happens ER=EPR will take its place as one of the cornerstones of the new theory.
What all of this suggests to me, and what I want to suggest to you, is that quantum mechanics and gravity are far more tightly related than we (or at least I) had ever imagined. The essential nonlocalities of quantum mechanics - the need for instantaneous communication in order to classically simulate entanglement - parallels the nonlocal potentialities of general relativity: ER=EPR."

See also:
http://www.sciencealert.com/this-new-equation-might-finally-unite-the-two-biggest-theories-in-physics-says-physicist (http://www.sciencealert.com/this-new-equation-might-finally-unite-the-two-biggest-theories-in-physics-says-physicist)

Extract: ""The claim, in its most dramatic-sounding form, is that gravity (spacetime curvature caused by energy/momentum) isn’t hard to obtain in quantum mechanics - it’s automatic! Or at least, the most natural thing to expect," he says.

We'll have to wait and see if ER = EPR or something closely related bears out, but it's certainly food for thought, and Susskind for one thinks he's on to something here.

"To me it seems obvious that if ER = EPR is true, it is a very big deal, and it must affect the foundations and interpretation of quantum mechanics," he writes, adding that if he's right, "quantum mechanics and gravity are far more tightly related than we (or at least I) had ever imagined"."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 04, 2016, 03:13:35 PM
The linked report from Stanford is entitled: "ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE AND LIFE IN 2030 - ONE HUNDRED YEAR STUDY ON ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE | REPORT OF THE 2015 STUDY PANEL | SEPTEMBER 2016" and it envisions rapid progress in AI development/implementation by 2030:

https://ai100.stanford.edu/sites/default/files/ai_100_report_0831fnl.pdf (https://ai100.stanford.edu/sites/default/files/ai_100_report_0831fnl.pdf)

Extract: "Longer term, AI may be thought of as a radically different mechanism for wealth creation in which everyone should be entitled to a portion of the world’s AI-produced treasures.

Misunderstandings about what AI is and is not could fuel opposition to technologies with the potential to benefit everyone. Poorly informed regulation that stifles innovation would be a tragic mistake.

An accurate and sophisticated picture of AI—one that competes with its popular portrayal—is hampered by the difficulty of pinning down a precise definition of artificial intelligence.


Intelligence lies on a multi-dimensional spectrum. According to this view, the difference between an arithmetic calculator and a human brain is not one of kind, but of scale, speed, degree of autonomy, and generality.

A growing body of research is devoted to the idea that a wide array of devices can be interconnected to collect and share their sensory information. Such devices can include appliances, vehicles, buildings, cameras, and other things.

As cars will become better drivers than people, city-dwellers will own fewer cars, live further from work, and spend time differently, leading to an entirely new urban organization.

Over the next fifteen years, coincident advances in mechanical and AI technologies promise to increase the safe and reliable use and utility of home robots in a typical North American city.

AI-based applications could improve health outcomes and quality of life for millions of people in the coming years—but only if they gain the trust of doctors, nurses, and patients.

Specialized motion tracking devices... and the emerging (inter) connectedness between the home environment and health-monitoring devices have created a vibrant new sector of innovation.

Though quality education will always require active engagement by human teachers, AI promises to enhance education at all levels, especially by providing personalization at scale.

The current absence of sophisticated use of AI technologies in schools, colleges, and universities may be explained by the lack of financial resources as well as the lack of data establishing the technologies’ effectiveness.

While formal education will not disappear, the Study Panel believes that MOOCs and other forms of online education will become part of learning at all levels, from K-12 through university, in a blended classroom experience.

As dramatized in the movie Minority Report, predictive policing tools raise the specter of innocent people being unjustifiably targeted. But well-deployed AI prediction tools have the potential to actually remove or reduce human bias.

As labor becomes a less important factor in production as compared to owning intellectual capital, a majority of citizens may find the value of their labor insufficient to pay for a socially acceptable standard of living.

AI could widen existing inequalities of opportunity if access to AI technologies—along with the high-powered computation and large-scale data that fuel many of them—is unfairly distributed across society.

Absent sufficient technical expertise to assess safety or other metrics, national or local officials may refuse to permit a potentially promising application—or green light a sensitive application that has not been adequately vetted.

AI applications could increasingly shift investment from payroll and income to capital expenditure. Depending on a state budget’s reliance on payroll and income tax, such a shift could be destabilizing.

Although the separation of AI into sub-fields has enabled deep technical progress along several different fronts, synthesizing intelligence at any reasonable scale invariably requires many different ideas to be integrated."

Also see:
http://www.computerworld.com/article/3116124/artificial-intelligence/scientists-look-at-how-ai-will-change-our-lives-by-2030.html (http://www.computerworld.com/article/3116124/artificial-intelligence/scientists-look-at-how-ai-will-change-our-lives-by-2030.html)

Separately, see:
http://www.morningticker.com/2016/09/incredible-discovery-could-forever-change-clothing/ (http://www.morningticker.com/2016/09/incredible-discovery-could-forever-change-clothing/)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 08, 2016, 03:43:24 AM
The linked article entitled: "Why insights of Nobel physicists could revolutionise 21st-century computing", indicates that the research of this year's Nobel physicists could make quantum computing practical in as little at ten years:

http://theconversation.com/why-insights-of-nobel-physicists-could-revolutionise-21st-century-computing-66613 (http://theconversation.com/why-insights-of-nobel-physicists-could-revolutionise-21st-century-computing-66613)

Extract: "It might take between ten and 30 years before scientists become sufficiently good at manipulating electrons to make quantum computing possible, but they open up exciting possibilities. They could simulate the formation of molecules, for example, which is numerically too complicated for today’s computers. This could revolutionise drug research by enabling us to predict what will happen during chemical processes in the body.

To give just one other example, quantum computing has the potential to make artificial intelligence a reality. Quantum machines may be better at learning than classical computers, partly because they might be underpinned by much cleverer algorithms. Cracking AI could be a step change in human existence – for better or worse.

In short, the predictions of Thouless, Haldane and Kosterlitz have the potential to help revolutionise 21st-century computer technology. Where the Nobel committee has recognised the importance of their work in 2016, we are likely to be thanking them many decades into the future."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 14, 2016, 04:11:41 PM
The linked reference (& associated article) indicates that the adoption of rapid terahertz radiation, ("T-rays") to improve memory switching rates could result in ultrafast data recording that could facilitate a smooth transition to quantum computation:

S. Baierl, M. Hohenleutner, T. Kampfrath, A. K. Zvezdin, A. V. Kimel, R. Huber & R. V. Mikhaylovskiy  (03 October 2016), "Nonlinear spin control by terahertz-driven anisotropy fields", Nature Photonics, doi:10.1038/nphoton.2016.181


http://www.nature.com/nphoton/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphoton.2016.181.html (http://www.nature.com/nphoton/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphoton.2016.181.html)

Abstract: "Future information technologies, such as ultrafast data recording, quantum computation or spintronics, call for ever faster spin control by light. Intense terahertz pulses can couple to spins on the intrinsic energy scale of magnetic excitations. Here, we explore a novel electric dipole-mediated mechanism of nonlinear terahertz-spin coupling that is much stronger than linear Zeeman coupling to the terahertz magnetic field. Using the prototypical antiferromagnet thulium orthoferrite (TmFeO3), we demonstrate that resonant terahertz pumping of electronic orbital transitions modifies the magnetic anisotropy for ordered Fe3+ spins and triggers large-amplitude coherent spin oscillations. This mechanism is inherently nonlinear, it can be tailored by spectral shaping of the terahertz waveforms and its efficiency outperforms the Zeeman torque by an order of magnitude. Because orbital states govern the magnetic anisotropy in all transition-metal oxides, the demonstrated control scheme is expected to be applicable to many magnetic materials."

See also:
https://www.engadget.com/2016/10/12/terahertz-radiation-could-speed-up-computer-memory-by-1000-times/ (https://www.engadget.com/2016/10/12/terahertz-radiation-could-speed-up-computer-memory-by-1000-times/)

Extract: "One area limiting speed in personal computing speed is memory -- specifically, how quickly individual memory cells can be switched, which is currently done using an external magnetic field. European and Russian scientists have proposed a new method using much more rapid terahertz radiation, aka "T-rays," the same things used in airport body scanners."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: budmantis on October 18, 2016, 02:34:47 PM
http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20161017-can-wild-seeds-save-us-from-food-apocalypse (http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20161017-can-wild-seeds-save-us-from-food-apocalypse)

"Around the world, botanists are battling to find rare wild seed strains before they die out, helping ensure food supplies that can survive the perils of climate change".
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 21, 2016, 06:25:35 PM
The linked reference is entitled: "Correlations in quantum thermodynamics: Heat, work, and entropy production".  The quantum methodology discussed in the reference could be used to "… build efficient quantum heat engines, or shed light on our understanding of the role of correlations in biological processes in relation to, e.g., the efficiency of photosynthetic light-harvesting complexes."

http://www.nature.com/articles/srep35568 (http://www.nature.com/articles/srep35568)

For more on quantum computing see also the following reference entitled "A dressed spin qubit in silicon":

http://www.nature.com/nnano/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nnano.2016.178.html (http://www.nature.com/nnano/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nnano.2016.178.html)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 26, 2016, 05:38:48 PM
The linked article demonstrate the rate of progress being made for both quantum computing and a quantum Internet:

Haw et. al. (Oct 26 2016), "Surpassing the no-cloning limit with a heralded hybrid linear amplifier for coherent states", Nature Communications 7, Article no. 13222, doi:10.1038/ncomms13222.

http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms13222 (http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms13222)

&

Dong et. al. (Oct 26 2016), "Learning robust pulses for generating universal quantum gates", Scientific Reports 6, Article no. 36090, doi:10.1038/srep36090

http://www.nature.com/articles/srep36090 (http://www.nature.com/articles/srep36090)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: budmantis on October 28, 2016, 06:08:09 AM
http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-37789594 (http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-37789594)

"World's  largest marine protected area declared in Antarctica".

"Conservationists are delighted that the Ross Sea has been designated a marine protected area".
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 05, 2016, 06:47:33 PM
In Reply #39, I referenced an article by Paul Mason that indicated that Karl Marx understood how information theory could be used to re-shape our economic system into a more sustainable post-capitalistic global socio-economic system.

http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1308.msg57468/topicseen.html#msg57468 (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,1308.msg57468/topicseen.html#msg57468)

The linked book by John Bellamy Foster (2016) is entitled: "Marx’s Ecology: Materialism and Nature", and it indicates that Karl Marx thought of the human body as part of the natural world and called nature an extension of our bodies.  Thus Marx's ideas for the use of information theory to re-shape our post-capitalistic global socio-economic system should result in an improved relationship between mankind and Mother Nature.

http://monthlyreview.org/product/marxs_ecology/ (http://monthlyreview.org/product/marxs_ecology/)

Promotional summary: "Progress requires the conquest of nature. Or does it? This new account overturns conventional interpretations of Marx and in the process outlines a more rational approach to the current environmental crisis.

Marx, it is often assumed, cared only about industrial growth and the development of economic forces. John Bellamy Foster examines Marx’s neglected writings on capitalist agriculture and soil ecology, philosophical naturalism, and evolutionary theory. He shows that Marx, known as a powerful critic of capitalist society, was also deeply concerned with the changing human relationship to nature.

Marx’s Ecology covers many other thinkers, including Epicurus, Charles Darwin, Thomas Malthus, Ludwig Feuerbach, P. J. Proudhon, and William Paley.

By reconstructing a materialist conception of nature and society, Marx’s Ecology challenges the spiritualism prevalent in the modern Green movement, pointing toward a method that offers more lasting and sustainable solutions to the ecological crisis."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 15, 2016, 12:09:10 AM
The linked Nature reference entitled: "Multi-scale Adaptive Computational Ghost Imaging", uses information science to dramatically enhance the performance of image detection & processing (see attached image).  Such technology can give practicable eyes to AI:

http://www.nature.com/articles/srep37013 (http://www.nature.com/articles/srep37013)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Juan C. García on November 17, 2016, 06:35:07 PM
Good video about the Anthropocene (I hope that I am not repeating this link):

http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/4574615.htm (http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/stories/4574615.htm)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 21, 2016, 09:59:50 PM
The linked article is entitled: "Microsoft 'doubles down' on futuristic quantum computers".  This is another indication that the future of quantum computing is coming sooner rather than later:

http://www.pcworld.com/article/3143705/hardware/microsoft-puts-quantum-computing-higher-on-its-hardware-priority-list.html (http://www.pcworld.com/article/3143705/hardware/microsoft-puts-quantum-computing-higher-on-its-hardware-priority-list.html)

Extract: "Microsoft is accelerating its efforts to make a quantum computer as it looks to a future of computing beyond today’s PCs and servers.

Microsoft has researched quantum computing for more than a decade. Now the company’s goal is to put the theory to work and create actual hardware and software."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 07, 2016, 01:21:15 AM
The linked article is entitled: "The Fourth Industrial Revolution: what it means, how to respond".  Climate change is not the only thing that people will need to adapt to in the Anthropocene:


https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/the-fourth-industrial-revolution-what-it-means-and-how-to-respond/ (https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/01/the-fourth-industrial-revolution-what-it-means-and-how-to-respond/)

Extract: "There are three reasons why today’s transformations represent not merely a prolongation of the Third Industrial Revolution but rather the arrival of a Fourth and distinct one: velocity, scope, and systems impact. The speed of current breakthroughs has no historical precedent. When compared with previous industrial revolutions, the Fourth is evolving at an exponential rather than a linear pace. Moreover, it is disrupting almost every industry in every country. And the breadth and depth of these changes herald the transformation of entire systems of production, management, and governance.

In the future, technological innovation will also lead to a supply-side miracle, with long-term gains in efficiency and productivity. Transportation and communication costs will drop, logistics and global supply chains will become more effective, and the cost of trade will diminish, all of which will open new markets and drive economic growth.

At the same time, as the economists Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee have pointed out, the revolution could yield greater inequality, particularly in its potential to disrupt labor markets. As automation substitutes for labor across the entire economy, the net displacement of workers by machines might exacerbate the gap between returns to capital and returns to labor. On the other hand, it is also possible that the displacement of workers by technology will, in aggregate, result in a net increase in safe and rewarding jobs.

We cannot foresee at this point which scenario is likely to emerge, and history suggests that the outcome is likely to be some combination of the two. However, I am convinced of one thing—that in the future, talent, more than capital, will represent the critical factor of production. This will give rise to a job market increasingly segregated into “low-skill/low-pay” and “high-skill/high-pay” segments, which in turn will lead to an increase in social tensions.

The impact on people
The Fourth Industrial Revolution, finally, will change not only what we do but also who we are. It will affect our identity and all the issues associated with it: our sense of privacy, our notions of ownership, our consumption patterns, the time we devote to work and leisure, and how we develop our careers, cultivate our skills, meet people, and nurture relationships. It is already changing our health and leading to a “quantified” self, and sooner than we think it may lead to human augmentation. The list is endless because it is bound only by our imagination.

In the end, it all comes down to people and values. We need to shape a future that works for all of us by putting people first and empowering them. In its most pessimistic, dehumanized form, the Fourth Industrial Revolution may indeed have the potential to “robotize” humanity and thus to deprive us of our heart and soul. But as a complement to the best parts of human nature—creativity, empathy, stewardship—it can also lift humanity into a new collective and moral consciousness based on a shared sense of destiny. It is incumbent on us all to make sure the latter prevails."

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 08, 2016, 12:14:46 PM
The two linked article indicate that the 4th Industrial Revolution will not only be about robotics and AI, but also about the interface of AI & humans to enhance Human Intelligence, HI.

The first linked article is entitled: "The ethics of transhumanism".

https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/26/the-ethics-of-transhumanism/ (https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/26/the-ethics-of-transhumanism/)

Extract: "Transhumanists believe that humankind can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations to become “superhuman” and, eventually, immortal.

One of the proposed solutions to achieve immortality comes from Ray Kurzweil, who believes that we can transfer our consciousness to machines to achieve digital immortality within three decades.

However, by the time it is predicted we achieve digital immortality, it is also likely that we would have developed human-like artificial intelligence. Elon Musk believes that humans need to add digital implants in the form of a neural lace to their brains to be able to compete with artificial intelligence."

The second linked article is entitled: "The Brain Tech to Merge Humans and AI Is Already Being Developed".

http://singularityhub.com/2016/12/05/the-brain-tech-to-merge-humans-and-ai-is-already-being-developed/ (http://singularityhub.com/2016/12/05/the-brain-tech-to-merge-humans-and-ai-is-already-being-developed/)

Extract: "Is AI the greatest tool humanity will ever create, or are we “summoning the demon”?
To quote the head of AI at Singularity University, Neil Jacobstein, “It’s not artificial intelligence I’m worried about, it’s human stupidity.”

In a recent Abundance 360 webinar, I interviewed Bryan Johnson, the founder of a new company called Kernel which he seeded with $100 million.

To quote Bryan, “It’s not about AI vs. humans. Rather, it's about creating HI, or ‘Human Intelligence’: the merger of humans and AI.”

we’re taking evolution into our own hands.
I like to say we're going from evolution by natural selection — Darwinism — into evolution by intelligent direction.
We can now focus on technologies to augment human intelligence (HI)."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on December 12, 2016, 07:58:39 PM
The linked article is entitled: "FEMA's Director Wants Capitalism to Protect Us From Climate Change".  Those who adapt early to the coming systemic changes will have a better chance of survival.

https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-12-12/fema-s-director-wants-capitalism-to-protect-us-from-climate-change (https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-12-12/fema-s-director-wants-capitalism-to-protect-us-from-climate-change)

Extract: "FEMA suggested what it called a disaster deductible: State governments would be on the hook for some of the cost of cleaning up after hurricanes, floods and other calamities. But they could lower that deductible by taking steps to reduce their exposure -- for example, by passing tougher building codes.

States balked. But as climate change puts more property at risk, the pressure to reform federal disaster policy will only increase. Fugate spoke with me last week about social welfare for developers, the futility of regulating where people can build, and why this issue won't go away once Republicans are in charge."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 04, 2017, 12:13:06 AM
Here are a couple of plots that might help some to better adapt to the on-coming 4th Industrial Revolution:
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 06, 2017, 05:25:16 PM
The linked article is entitled: "Quantum Computers Ready to Leap Out of the Lab in 2017".

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/quantum-computers-ready-to-leap-out-of-the-lab-in-2017/ (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/quantum-computers-ready-to-leap-out-of-the-lab-in-2017/)

Extract: "Quantum computing has long seemed like one of those technologies that are 20 years away, and always will be. But 2017 could be the year that the field sheds its research-only image.

Computing giants Google and Microsoft recently hired a host of leading lights, and have set challenging goals for this year. Their ambition reflects a broader transition taking place at start-ups and academic research labs alike: to move from pure science towards engineering."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 25, 2017, 03:09:50 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Why it matters that Human Poker Pros are being Trounced by AI", indicating that the performance of AI is accelerating on track with projections by Ray Kurzweil:

http://gizmodo.com/why-it-matters-that-human-poker-pros-are-getting-trounc-1791565551 (http://gizmodo.com/why-it-matters-that-human-poker-pros-are-getting-trounc-1791565551)

Extract: "Given the early results, it appears that we’ll soon be able to add Heads-Up, No-Limit Texas Hold’em poker (HUNL) to the list of games where AI has surpassed the best humans—a growing list that includes Othello, chess, checkers, Jeopardy!, and as we witnessed last year, Go. Unlike chess and Go, however, this popular version of poker involves bluffing, hidden cards, and imperfect information, which machines find notoriously difficult to handle. Computer scientists say HUNL represents the “last frontier” of game solving, signifying a milestone in the development of AI—and an achievement that would represent a major step towards more human-like intelligence."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: DrTskoul on January 25, 2017, 03:18:55 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Why it matters that Human Poker Pros are being Trounced by AI", indicating that the performance of AI is accelerating on track with projections by Ray Kurzweil:

http://gizmodo.com/why-it-matters-that-human-poker-pros-are-getting-trounc-1791565551 (http://gizmodo.com/why-it-matters-that-human-poker-pros-are-getting-trounc-1791565551)

Extract: "Given the early results, it appears that we’ll soon be able to add Heads-Up, No-Limit Texas Hold’em poker (HUNL) to the list of games where AI has surpassed the best humans—a growing list that includes Othello, chess, checkers, Jeopardy!, and as we witnessed last year, Go. Unlike chess and Go, however, this popular version of poker involves bluffing, hidden cards, and imperfect information, which machines find notoriously difficult to handle. Computer scientists say HUNL represents the “last frontier” of game solving, signifying a milestone in the development of AI—and an achievement that would represent a major step towards more human-like intelligence."

I hope future AI does not decide to save us from ourselves....
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 02, 2017, 03:36:25 AM
The linked article is entitled: “Quantum computer 'construction plan' drawn up”.  This indicates that the 4th Industrial Revolution is heating up.

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-38811255 (http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-38811255)

Extract: “The new blueprint, based on a modular design appears in Science Advances.

"We have produced a construction plan - a real blueprint to actually build a large-scale quantum computer," Winfried Hensinger, from the University of Sussex, told BBC News.”

See also:
http://www.nature.com/news/physicists-propose-football-pitch-sized-quantum-computer-1.21423 (http://www.nature.com/news/physicists-propose-football-pitch-sized-quantum-computer-1.21423)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 02, 2017, 08:09:43 PM
The linked article is entitled: "ORNL researchers set record for quantum communications speed".  So not only are quantum computers becoming increasingly commercially available, but superdense coding will soon allow quantum communications to speed the Internet in a secure fashion.

http://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/local/2017/02/02/ornl-researchers-set-record-quantum-communications-speed/97365998/ (http://www.knoxnews.com/story/news/local/2017/02/02/ornl-researchers-set-record-quantum-communications-speed/97365998/)

Extract: " Researchers at the Department of Energy's Oak Ridge National Laboratory have set a new world record in superdense coding, a technique by which electrical particles are communicated, that could have far-reaching implications for internet users and cybersecurity.

For now, the development is largely experimental, but the group is working on ways to make their research applicable for internet and technology companies, and even the U.S. military. The United States Army Research Laboratory was a supporter of the project, according to the news release, and Humble said the development could be used to help the military more efficiently transmit information.

“This experiment demonstrates how quantum communication techniques can be integrated with conventional networking technology,” Williams said in the news release. “It’s part of the groundwork needed to build future quantum networks that can be used for computing and sensing applications.”"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 14, 2017, 03:41:17 AM
The linked article is entitled: “Google's “DeepMind" AI Understands The Benefits Of Betrayal“.  It appears that in the face of uncertainty, AI understands the benefits of both cooperation and betrayal.

http://www.iflscience.com/technology/googles-deepmind-ai-understands-the-benefits-of-betrayal/ (http://www.iflscience.com/technology/googles-deepmind-ai-understands-the-benefits-of-betrayal/)

Extract: “It’s looking increasingly likely that artificial intelligence (AI) will be the harbinger of the next technological revolution. When it develops to the point wherein it is able to learn, think, and even “feel” without the input of a human – a truly “smart” AI – then everything we know will change, almost overnight.

That’s why it’s so interesting to keep track of major milestones in the development of AIs that exist today, including that of Google’s DeepMind neural network. It’s already besting humanity in the gaming world, and a new in-house study reveals that Google is decidedly unsure whether or not the AI tends to prefer cooperative behaviors over aggressive, competitive ones.

Perhaps the scariest thing about all this is that its instincts are so unnervingly, well, human-like – and we know how following our instincts sometimes turns out.“
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: DrTskoul on February 14, 2017, 04:24:08 AM
The linked article is entitled: “Google's “DeepMind" AI Understands The Benefits Of Betrayal“.  It appears that in the face of uncertainty, AI understands the benefits of both cooperation and betrayal.

http://www.iflscience.com/technology/googles-deepmind-ai-understands-the-benefits-of-betrayal/ (http://www.iflscience.com/technology/googles-deepmind-ai-understands-the-benefits-of-betrayal/)

Extract: “It’s looking increasingly likely that artificial intelligence (AI) will be the harbinger of the next technological revolution. When it develops to the point wherein it is able to learn, think, and even “feel” without the input of a human – a truly “smart” AI – then everything we know will change, almost overnight.

That’s why it’s so interesting to keep track of major milestones in the development of AIs that exist today, including that of Google’s DeepMind neural network. It’s already besting humanity in the gaming world, and a new in-house study reveals that Google is decidedly unsure whether or not the AI tends to prefer cooperative behaviors over aggressive, competitive ones.

Perhaps the scariest thing about all this is that its instincts are so unnervingly, well, human-like – and we know how following our instincts sometimes turns out.“

Until the point that the advanced AI perceives humans as a threat to earth and humanity..
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 17, 2017, 12:17:53 AM
The linked article is entitled: “The strange link between the human mind and quantum physics”.  In a few decades, who knows how much progress will be made into this matter.

http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170215-the-strange-link-between-the-human-mind-and-quantum-physics (http://www.bbc.com/earth/story/20170215-the-strange-link-between-the-human-mind-and-quantum-physics)

Extract: “The perennial puzzle of consciousness has even led some researchers to invoke quantum physics to explain it. That notion has always been met with skepticism, which is not surprising: it does not sound wise to explain one mystery with another. But such ideas are not obviously absurd, and neither are they arbitrary.

For one thing, the mind seemed, to the great discomfort of physicists, to force its way into early quantum theory. What's more, quantum computers are predicted to be capable of accomplishing things ordinary computers cannot, which reminds us of how our brains can achieve things that are still beyond artificial intelligence. "Quantum consciousness" is widely derided as mystical woo, but it just will not go away.

In a study published in 2015, physicist Matthew Fisher of the University of California at Santa Barbara argued that the brain might contain molecules capable of sustaining more robust quantum superpositions. Specifically, he thinks that the nuclei of phosphorus atoms may have this ability.

In 2016, Adrian Kent of the University of Cambridge in the UK, one of the most respected "quantum philosophers", speculated that consciousness might alter the behaviour of quantum systems in subtle but detectable ways.“
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Archimid on February 17, 2017, 03:25:48 AM
When I read articles like this I think of the Ptolemaic model. Here is an article that hints as how good the Ptolemaic model was:

http://www.polaris.iastate.edu/EveningStar/Unit2/unit2_sub1.htm (http://www.polaris.iastate.edu/EveningStar/Unit2/unit2_sub1.htm)

FTA:

Quote
As an indication of exactly how good the Ptolemaic model is, modern planetariums are built using gears and motors that essentially reproduce the Ptolemaic model for the appearance of the sky as viewed from a stationary Earth. In the planetarium projector, motors and gears provide uniform motion of the heavenly bodies. One motor moves the planet projector around in a big circle, which in this case is the deferent, and another gear or motor takes the place of the epicycle.


Ptolemy's model was as good as  Ptolemy's capacity to sense the world around him. Once better instruments came along (like the telescope), Ptolemy's model became obsolete for all but the most specific use, planetariums.

 My bet is that the edges of science are in the same situation. Things like dark matter, the observer effect and maybe the Higgs boson might be the limits of the models. When breakthroughs happen scientists can then sense beyond current capabilities and paradigms change.

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 21, 2017, 12:12:11 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Frontline: Fourth Industrial Revolution Takes Off, “Localizing” Site Selection Requirements".  The article indicates that the 4th Industrial Revolution will benefit US manufacturing more than any other country in the world, due to: (a) synergies of the adoption of new technologies (e.g. AI, robotics, IoT, smart manufacturing, smart products, etc); (b) proximity to the supply of workers at the high-end of the skill setsl and (c) proximity to consumer demand.

http://www.areadevelopment.com/advanced-manufacturing/Q1-2017/4th-industrial-revolution-localizing-site-selection-requirements.shtml (http://www.areadevelopment.com/advanced-manufacturing/Q1-2017/4th-industrial-revolution-localizing-site-selection-requirements.shtml)

Extract: "The adoption of new technology — in what’s been called “the fourth industrial revolution” — will benefit the entire manufacturing ecosystem.

At the show, much of the “buzz” revolved around the software making possible what Brian Raymond, director of Innovation Policy for NAM calls “the convergence of the physical and digital worlds.”

With consumer demand for the “latest and greatest” continuing to drive that convergence, Raymond says the biggest challenge for the manufacturing industry will be helping eliminate the “mismatch” between the skills required by the new manufacturing and the supply of workers who have those skills.

As 2017 begins, Michelle Drew Rodriguez, manufacturing leader for Deloitte’s Center for Industry Insights, sees “limitless possibilities” for manufacturing: “Each of those trends is definitely poised for growth with the IoT, smart products, and smart factories. When you look at them combined, that’s really where the true value comes together.”

In Deloitte’s 2016 global manufacturing competitiveness survey of more than 500 executives, the U.S. came out on top as the country which is expected to be most competitive by the end of the decade. “The U.S. has been poised for a resurgence, within the past couple of years,” Rodriguez says. “We’re seeing that in the news, with both domestic and international companies investing more in the U.S., especially around manufacturing. Modern manufacturing is moving to increasingly advanced technologies and skill sets.”

With the Trump administration’s emphasis on creating jobs, some companies that had been looking at investments in Mexico are reconsidering the U.S., Matter says. He notes that the three largest third-party manufacturing firms “are all growing their operations in the U.S., and not only in the lower-cost U.S. markets. They’re expanding in places like Silicon Valley.” "
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 23, 2017, 08:54:56 AM
The linked article is entitled: "MIT researchers have developed a tree on a chip, with potential applications in robotics".  This could help make extremely small robots practicable.

http://tech.firstpost.com/news-analysis/mit-researchers-have-developed-a-tree-on-a-chip-with-potential-applications-in-robotics-367997.html (http://tech.firstpost.com/news-analysis/mit-researchers-have-developed-a-tree-on-a-chip-with-potential-applications-in-robotics-367997.html)

Extract: "The passive pumping on the device, which the researchers have dubbed as a “tree-on-a-chip” can potentially be used as actuators for extremely small robots, or nanobots."

See the associated research article at:

http://www.nature.com/articles/nplants201732 (http://www.nature.com/articles/nplants201732)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 27, 2017, 11:41:14 PM
The linked article is entitled: "Elon Musk launches Neuralink, a venture to merge the human brain with AI".  The title says it all.

http://www.theverge.com/2017/3/27/15077864/elon-musk-neuralink-brain-computer-interface-ai-cyborgs (http://www.theverge.com/2017/3/27/15077864/elon-musk-neuralink-brain-computer-interface-ai-cyborgs)

See also the associated article entitled: "Elon Musk Launches Neuralink to Connect Brains With Computers"

https://www.wsj.com/articles/elon-musk-launches-neuralink-to-connect-brains-with-computers-1490642652 (https://www.wsj.com/articles/elon-musk-launches-neuralink-to-connect-brains-with-computers-1490642652)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 29, 2017, 01:49:41 PM
The linked article is entitled: "China's secret plan to crush SpaceX and the US space program".  Change is coming whether we are ready or not.

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/28/chinas-secret-plan-to-crush-spacex-and-the-us-space-program.html (http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/28/chinas-secret-plan-to-crush-spacex-and-the-us-space-program.html)

Extract: "China's breakneck economic expansion may be flagging, but the country's ambitions in space show no signs of slowing down. Alongside ongoing efforts to rival NASA by placing robotic landers, and eventually astronauts, on the moon and Mars, China's government is increasingly looking to its burgeoning space sector to rival U.S. companies like Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin and Elon Musk's SpaceX, which is targeting March 30 for the latest launch of its Falcon 9 rocket.

While its space industry is a part of China's vision for economic transition, it is only one component, Lewis says. Much of Beijing's desire for economic transition has manifested itself in massive investments in more traditional technology industries, like semiconductors, into which the government is pouring $150 billion to boost China's domestic chip production (a move that has drawn the ire of both the Obama and Trump administrations)."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 14, 2017, 12:40:10 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Evidence Indicates That Universal Basic Income Improves Human Health", and it promotes that application of Universal Basic Income in order to improve society.

https://futurism.com/evidence-indicates-that-universal-basic-income-improves-human-health/

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 20, 2017, 06:21:24 PM
The linked article is entitled: "Quantum Computers Could Have Higher Speed Limits Than Previously Believed"; which is good news for tackling complex problems like climate change modeling; and other 'wicked problems'.

http://wallstreetpit.com/113203-quantum-computers-higher-speed-limits-previously-believed/?google_editors_picks=true (http://wallstreetpit.com/113203-quantum-computers-higher-speed-limits-previously-believed/?google_editors_picks=true)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 22, 2017, 10:20:46 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Kurzweil Claims That the Singularity Will Happen by 2045".  Rather than preparing for the future by buying 'survivalist' books, maybe it would be better to improve your mind (say via mindfulness):

https://futurism.com/kurzweil-claims-that-the-singularity-will-happen-by-2045/

Extract: "In a communication to Futurism, Kurzweil states:

"2029 is the consistent date I have predicted for when an AI will pass a valid Turing test and therefore achieve human levels of intelligence. I have set the date 2045 for the ‘Singularity’ which is when we will multiply our effective intelligence a billion fold by merging with the intelligence we have created."

And, because it’s the nature of technology to improve, Kurzweil  predicts that during the 2030s some technology will be invented that can go inside your brain and help your memory.

So, instead of the machines-taking-over-the-world vision of the singularity, Kurzweil thinks it’ll be a future of unparalleled human-machine synthesis."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 22, 2017, 10:36:29 AM
The April 23 2017 issue of the New York Times Magazine is focused on climate change (see the following link); for those who want to get ready:

https://www.nytimes.com/section/magazine (https://www.nytimes.com/section/magazine)

See also the article (& associated attached image) on how a warming planet drives human migration:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/19/magazine/how-a-warming-planet-drives-human-migration.html?action=click&contentCollection=magazine&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=5&pgtype=sectionfront&_r=0 (https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/19/magazine/how-a-warming-planet-drives-human-migration.html?action=click&contentCollection=magazine&region=rank&module=package&version=highlights&contentPlacement=5&pgtype=sectionfront&_r=0)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Sigmetnow on April 23, 2017, 12:27:23 AM
New technology brings Star Wars-style desert moisture farming a step closer
Quote
(CNN)Luke Skywalker wasn't just a farmer. In the original 1977 Star Wars film, the lead character was desperate to leave his home planet of Tatooine, where his family farmed moisture from the atmosphere using devices called "vaporators". In the planet's hot and dry desert landscape, moisture farming was an important activity for survival.

But could this principle of drawing moisture from the air to provide drinking water work in the real world? Researchers and I are working on technology to turn it from science fiction into reality. And now a new study has demonstrated how one device could work even in dry desert conditions using only the power of the sun.
...
http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/21/tech/eco-solutions-star-wars-desert-vaporators/index.html (http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/21/tech/eco-solutions-star-wars-desert-vaporators/index.html)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: nicibiene on April 23, 2017, 10:22:09 AM
@sigmetnow recently we had an article here in newspaper about fogcatchers in Peru.

http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/33507/20161205/oceans-sky-fog-catcher-gives-clean-water-poor-peru.htm (http://www.natureworldnews.com/articles/33507/20161205/oceans-sky-fog-catcher-gives-clean-water-poor-peru.htm)

By the way nobody cares about the strange new trend of asparagus from Peru all winter long in our supermarkets. Early asparagus from Greece seems to be replaced by groundheated, foil protected (tons of plastics) german cultures-harvested by low paid workers from Poland or other eastern european countries...

Maybe it would be one step in adaption to get aware of the stupidity we all act as costumers? But that will never happen, we never pay the TRUE cost. Not for energy, not for food, not for clothes or other things we are told to need...   >:(
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 23, 2017, 07:36:10 PM
The following three linked articles, collectively indicate that within about 10 years a commercially available quantum Internet could be established (parallel with the existing classical Internet), that could allow not only for the development of dispersed networks of general purpose quantum computers; but also for quantum-synchronized small devices in the Internet-of-Things:

The first linked article is entitled: "Building the Quantum Internet".

https://cacm.acm.org/news/214225-building-the-quantum-internet/fulltext (https://cacm.acm.org/news/214225-building-the-quantum-internet/fulltext)

Extract: "In 2015 and 2016, quantum physicists from QuTech, a joint initiative of the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (TNO) and the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft), were the first to demonstrate loophole-free violation of the Bell inequality. Although this was an achievement in esoteric quantum physics, it is also the first step toward building a quantum Internet, a long-range network that can connect super-fast quantum computers or provide absolutely secure, tamper-free communication.

The quantum Internet will never replace the regular Internet; it simply adds extra functionality. The entangled photons traveling the fledgling quantum Internet will probably first be used for quantum key distribution, …

Perhaps the ultimate goal of the quantum Internet is to connect the world's quantum computers, which might become a reality in another decade. Entangling two quantum computers effectively merges them into one device twice as big, and for quantum computers, size matters exponentially; if you connect two same-sized regular computers, you get roughly twice the computing power. Entangle two quantum computers, and the computing power is squared; connect three, and you get the cube of their computing power."

The second linked article is entitled: "Quantum technology is beginning to come into its own".

http://www.economist.com/technology-quarterly/2017-03-09/quantum-devices (http://www.economist.com/technology-quarterly/2017-03-09/quantum-devices)

Extract: "Last August China launched Micius, a quantum-key-distribution-enabled satellite backed by tech companies including Huawei and Lenovo. The goal at this stage is to link the Beijing-to-Shanghai network to another in Urumqi, in Xinjiang province, some 3,000km away. Efforts to develop satellite communications are also under way in Singapore, Canada, Japan, Italy and America. Once the challenges of getting quantum signals into space—through turbulent air, clouds and so on—are overcome, a global network could easily follow.

With country-spanning networks and quantum-enabled satellites, it is easy to envisage a global “quantum internet” in which each link offers quantum-enhanced security. But the kind of innovation that will allow the development of such networks will also be of use, for example, in shuttling information within, and between, future quantum-computing devices: think quantum distributed computing and quantum cloud computing. Just as the internet has demonstrated the power of linking many standard computers, says Seth Lloyd, a theorist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, “the quantum internet has the potential to change the way in which people and organisations collaborate and compete, establishing trust while protecting privacy.

quantum technologies are still viewed by many industries as risky. That may be because many of the approaches are technologically so far beyond the current state of the art. Richard Murray, an emerging-technologies expert at Innovate UK, Britain’s technology-strategy agency, says that the more transformative the technological change, the easier it is to miss opportunities.

Many practitioners believe that the applications and technologies outlined in this report are just the beginning. As they become more familiar, they will give rise to new applications and wholly new hardware. Subjects that used to be mere footnotes to physics will rule, and engineers (and perhaps even consumers) will have to learn to speak quantum.

Quantum computers and simulators should eventually be capable of solving some of science’s most basic and yet most daunting questions. Sensors of unparalleled precision may at last make it possible to test the predictions of physicists’ most abstract ideas, perhaps linking the theories of quantum mechanics and gravity.”

The third linked article is entitled: "The Race to Sell True Quantum Computers Begins Before They Really Exist".

https://www.wired.com/2017/03/race-sell-true-quantum-computers-begins-really-exist/ (https://www.wired.com/2017/03/race-sell-true-quantum-computers-begins-really-exist/)

Extract: "Within the next five years, Google will produce a viable quantum computer. That’s the stake the company has just planted. In the pages of Nature late last week, researchers from Google’s Quantum AI Laboratory told the world that a machine leveraging the seemingly magical principles of quantum mechanics will soon outperform traditional computers on certain tasks. They said this long-anticipated technology will, among other things, improve the artificial intelligence that’s already remaking the tech world. “The field of quantum computing will soon achieve a historic milestone,” the team wrote. They call this milestone “quantum supremacy.”

A true quantum computer is not yet a reality. “You can’t do anything practical today,” says Gregoire Ribordy, founder and CEO of quantum cyber-security company ID Quantique. But the world’s biggest tech companies are already jockeying for their own form of commercial supremacy as they anticipate a quantum breakthrough. Both Google and IBM now say they will offer access to true quantum computing over the internet (call it quantum cloud computing). Microsoft recently hired several notable researchers in launching its own effort to build a quantum computer. And in China, internet giant Alibaba has teamed up with the Chinese Academy of Science to build a quantum computing lab. Meanwhile, various organizations (including Google) are exploring the potential of a commercial machine from D-Wave, which takes a more immediate but less powerful approach to the problem."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 24, 2017, 02:52:28 AM
The linked open access reference indicates: "We find that a straightforward application of a recent result yields exponential speedup compared to classical heuristics in approximate probabilistic inference, thereby demonstrating another example where advanced quantum resources can potentially prove useful in machine learning".

Peter Wittek & Christian Gogolin, (2017), "Quantum Enhanced Inference in Markov Logic Networks", Scientific Reports 7, No. 45672, doi:10.1038/serp45672

https://www.nature.com/articles/srep45672 (https://www.nature.com/articles/srep45672)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 01:48:40 AM
In the Reply 21 of the "RussiaGate" thread I indicated to prokaryotes that I would initiate a discussion here on how Technocracy could be updated in order to be more relevant to our current era of the 4th Industrial Revolution.  As background, I begin with the first two linked Wikipedia articles that indicate that Technocracy is a form of governance based on technical knowledge, where the government is run by technocrats, and theoretically the economy could be run without the use of a 'love of money' driven economy (noting that hard currency is just a tool, as are electrons keeping track of bank accounts; but I note that a future technocratic economy using cryptocurrency could in theory make it easier (say for artificial general intelligence, AGI, or for an intelligence community/oligarchy where a band of OpenAI supporters or the theoretical 'Deep State') to assign economic power based on merit (with a universal basic income as a starting point) rather than on greed. 

This series of posts on Technocracy, can also be thought of as the 'Revenge of the Nerds' (ala Mr Anderson in "The Matrix"); and if one needs more background on my thinking on such matters you can scan my posts in the "Systemic Isolation" thread, and/or the "Human Stupidity (Human Mental Illness)" thread.

The first linked Wikipedia article is entitled: "Technocracy", and it is part of a series of the following articles on 'basic forms of government'; and it notes that Technocracy is categorized as an oligarchy (power of few, as a power base), but otherwise, it could apply to any type of power structure or type of power ideology:

Basic forms of government
Power structure
Separation: Associated state, Dominion, Chiefdom
Federalism: Federation, Confederation, Devolution
Integration: Empire, Hegemony, Unitary state
Administrative division
Power source
Democracy (power of many): Direct, Representative, Semi, others
Oligarchy (power of few): Aristocracy, Military junta, Plutocracy, Stratocracy, Timocracy, Theocracy, Kitarachy, Particracy, Technocracy
Autocracy: Despotism, Illiberal democracy, Semi-authoritarian, Dictatorship
Hybrids: Anocracy
Power ideology
Monarchy vs. Republic (socio-political ideologies): Absolute, Constitutional, Directorial, Legalist (Chinese), Parliamentary, Semi-presidential, Presidential
Authoritarian vs. Libertarian (socio-economic ideologies): Capitalism, Colonialism, Communism, Distributism, Feudalism, Socialism
Anarchism v. Statism (civil liberties ideologies): Anarchy, Minarchy, Totalitarianism
Global vs. Local (geo-cultural ideologies): Central, City state, National unity, World


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technocracy (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technocracy)


Extract: "Technocracy is a system of governance where decision-makers are selected on the basis of technological knowledge. Scientists, engineers, technologists, or experts in any field, would compose the governing body, instead of elected representatives. Leadership skills would be selected on the basis of specialized knowledge and performance, rather than parliamentary skills. Technocracy in that sense of the word (an entire government run as a technical or engineering problem) is mostly hypothetical. In another commonly used sense, technocracy is any portion of a bureaucracy that is run by technologists in technically and analytically sound ways.

The term technocracy was originally used to advocate the application of the scientific method to solving social problems. In such a system, the role of money, economic values, and morals could be eliminated altogether. Concern would be given to sustainability within the resource base, instead of monetary profitability, so as to ensure continued operation of all social-industrial functions. Some uses of the word refer to a form of meritocracy, where the ablest are in charge, ostensibly without the influence of special interest groups. The word technocratic has been used to describe governments that include non-elected professionals at a ministerial level.

The term technocracy is derived from the Greek words τέχνη, tekhne meaning skill and κράτος, kratos meaning power, as in governance, or rule.

In the article "Technocrats: Minds Like Machines", it is stated that Singapore is perhaps the best advertisement for technocracy: the political and expert components of the governing system there seem to have merged completely. This was underlined in a 1993 article in "Wired" by Sandy Sandfort, where he describes the information technology system of the island even at that early date making it effectively intelligent.

Unlike most countries which emphasizes the importance of lawyers and diplomats, leaders of the Communist Party of China are mostly professional engineers as a result of their political culture. The Five-year plans of the People's Republic of China have enabled them to plan ahead in a technocratic fashion to build projects such as the National Trunk Highway System, the China high-speed rail system, and the Three Gorges Dam."

The second linked Wikipedia article is entitled: "Technocracy movement"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technocracy_movement (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Technocracy_movement)

Extract: "In a publication from 1938 Technocracy Inc. the main organization made the following statement in defining their proposal.
'Technocracy is the science of social engineering, the scientific operation of the entire social mechanism to produce and distribute goods and services to the entire population of this continent. For the first time in human history it will be done as a scientific, technical, engineering problem. There will be no place for Politics or Politicians, Finance or Financiers, Rackets or Racketeers. Technocracy states that this method of operating the social mechanism of the North American Continent is now mandatory because we have passed from a state of actual scarcity into the present status of potential abundance in which we are now held to an artificial scarcity forced upon us in order to continue a Price System which can distribute goods only by means of a medium of exchange. Technocracy states that price and abundance are incompatible; the greater the abundance the smaller the price. In a real abundance there can be no price at all. Only by abandoning the interfering price control and substituting a scientific method of production and distribution can an abundance be achieved. Technocracy will distribute by means of a certificate of distribution available to every citizen from birth to death."

Historically, Technocracy has gained interest during periods of hardship; however, Technocracy has always been, and still remains, a fringe movement; with only a few examples worldwide of temporary technocratic governments that can be studied, as these normally occur in response to temporary 'socio-economic crisis' conditions such as existed in Romaine in 2015 (see the last two linked articles); however, both Singapore and China could be considered examples of successful hybrid versions of Technocracy.  Indeed, Technocracy is not a cure-all, and in the USA some 'fringe' elements misuse (catfish) the name for purposes that are not core beliefs of Technocracy such as denying climate change.

The third linked article is entitled: "Dacian Ciolos: Romania’s Technocratic PM."

http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/dacian-ciolos-romania-s-technocratic-pm-08-17-2016 (http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/dacian-ciolos-romania-s-technocratic-pm-08-17-2016)

Extract: "Designated prime minister for a one-year term only, Ciolos will struggle to meet expectations on tackling corruption and stimulating economic growth."

The fourth linked article is entitled: "Romania: Experiment With Technocrats Comes to Grief".

http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/romania-experiment-with-technocrats-comes-to-grief-12-22-2016 (http://www.balkaninsight.com/en/article/romania-experiment-with-technocrats-comes-to-grief-12-22-2016)

Extract: "The year started with big hopes that a technocratic government could radically change country’s political face but ended it with a return to power by the unreformed Social Democrats.
“We have to say: ‘Yes, we are the government with zero corruption, zero populism, zero lies”. Such were the bold words of Dacian Ciolos on mid-December, when he tried to stress the main achievements of his one-year mandate as Romania’s Prime Minister.
Ciolos took power in November 2015 after Victor Ponta’s Social Democrat-led government resigned following days of massive protests across the country."

I am not promoting the use of Technocracy; however, it seems to me that it might be one form of governance that could survive a possible socio-economic collapse that I suspect might come in the 2050 to 2060 timeframe.  Furthermore, with the coming of the 4th Industrial Revolution (4IR), technological changes will be occurring at an accelerating pace (leading to what Ray Kurzweil calls the 'Technological Singularity' circa 2045); which requires a reformulation of the extant technocracy into what I call here: Technocracy for the 4th Industrial Revolution, or T-4IR (pronounced Tee-Fair). 
While as I believe that the nature of both the 4IR and T-4IR will be dominated by artificial general intelligence, AIG, no later than by 2045, I plan to use metaphors from the movie trilogy 'The Matrix' as it takes place in a post-collapse society dominated by AIG (I note that several futurists have indicated that after the 'Technological Singularity', society could well be like a blend of The Matrix and Star Trek).

Finally, I provide the following link to Technocracy Inc.'s official website, which clarify that it is not a political organization (see the first image), and that it promotes a balance between humans, the environment (see the second & third images) and social engineering (see the fourth image).

http://www.technocracyinc.org/ (http://www.technocracyinc.org/)

The linked Wired article/video is entitled: "Techies have been trying to replace politicians for decades"; which documents a 1947 international Pacific West Coast motorcade traveling from LA, California to Vancouver, Canada; entitled "Operation Columbia" (I opine that the Pacific West coast has a tradition of supporting technological risk taking without fear of failure; i.e. that both individuals and companies should not only focus on the profit or loss but on what good motivates you in the moment).

https://www.wired.com/2015/06/technocracy-inc/ (https://www.wired.com/2015/06/technocracy-inc/)

See also the 34-minute video of an interview of Google CEO Sergey Brin at the WEF in February 2017, where he states his opinion that it is impossible to project how the 4th Industrial Revolution will unfold (with metaphorically Technocracy Inc replaced by the WEF; as the oligarchy of techies begin to dominate the future):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30rx3dBPbIs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30rx3dBPbIs)


Also (for those already not familiar) see the following 55-minute video entitled: "The Singularity of AI is Near, Futurist Ray Kurzweil"; which points out that while it may be impossible to map a specific path forward to the technological singularity; it is possible (with confidence) to project basic trends and general rates of acceleration of information science; just as it is impossible to predict daily weather 100-years from now, but it is possible to project climate change assuming a BAU/RCP 8.5 pathway.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDmnV6PWv5Y (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pDmnV6PWv5Y)

Lastly, in my next post, I posit that certain schools of thought/philosophy associated with the teaching of (the) Buddha(s); such as Zen (Chan) Buddhism [while de-emphasizing the 'ism' part, ala mindfulness (Vipassana)] and/or Taoism; have increased the chances of success for Technocracy governance systems such as those in Singapore and China.  This is because if one is going to replace a 'love of money' based economic pricing/distribution system with a merit-based distribution system (such as occurs in any living organism) then not only does the influence of ignorance need to be reduced (say by accelerating information science), but also the influence of the helical spiral of craving/aversion must be progressively reduced by the scientific application of: (a) deductive logic (dharma faith); (b) inductive logic (dharma wisdom/Bayesian logic) and (c) a reduction of information entropy (suffering) as in progressively moving towards the light and out of darkness.  However, with regards to point (c) of reducing information entropy within a socio-economic system, the Tyranny of the Small Decision means that some opportunists within any socio-economic (or any information based) system may try to cherry-pick short-term opportunities in the enriched (low entropy) environment to the detriment of the whole.  In this sense, no matter how far into the light (reduced entropy) one is, one can backside by egotistically 'cherry-picking', and no matter how far into the darkness (high entropy) one is, one can always selflessly move towards the light.  Furthermore, as Technocracy is anti-populist, anti-corruption and anti-deception (ala alternative facts that are not evidence based), I plan to eventually discuss the Hegelian dialect (thesis-antithesis- synthesis) double helical spiral between the current wave of populist reaction to the 'non-perfect-management' of globalists (such as the Davos crowd) that are driving the 4th Industrial Revolution.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 01:59:45 AM
In my last post I noted that I plan to use many metaphors from The Matrix to describe my vision of Technocracy for the 4th Industrial Revolution, or T-4IR (pronounced Tee-Fair).  However, as I suspect that many readers only see The Matrix as purely science fiction, I note here that it is actually uses science fiction as an artistic vehicle to convey a Zen Buddhist understanding of the nature of reality in an AGI dominated world.  Furthermore, I note that per the linked Wikipedia article is entitled: "Zen" originated in China as Chan Buddhism which heavily influenced Chinese culture from the 6th century onward.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zen

Extract: "Zen (Chinese: 禪; pinyin: Chán) is a school of Mahayana Buddhism that originated in China during the Tang dynasty as Chan Buddhism. Zen school was strongly influenced by Taoism and developed as a distinguished school of Chinese Buddhism. From China, Chan Buddhism spread south to Vietnam, northeast to Korea and east to Japan, where it became known as Japanese Zen."

Also, I note that per the linked Wikipedia article entitled "Huineng", that Huineng (Dajian) is widely taken to be the Sixth and Last Patriarch of Chan (Zen) Buddhism, and he had a major influence on modern understand of Taoism.  Taoism is traditionally symbolized by the yin-yang symbol (see the first image as a symbol of the balance of nature); and I believe that it is no accident that it is similar to Technocracy Inc.'s monad symbol of the balance of production and consumption (see the second images).  Furthermore, the official Technocracy Inc. organization has a stated policy of concern for sustainability (see the third image) & for fighting climate change (see the fourth image).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Huineng

Extract: "Huineng (Chinese: 惠能; pinyin: Huìnéng, 638–713) was a Buddhist monk who is one of the most important figures in Chan Buddhism according to standard hagiographies. Huineng has been traditionally viewed as the Sixth and Last Patriarch of Chan Buddhism.
His posthumous name is Dajian

Lastly, I note that I believe that it is no accident that Singapore and China are the best examples of successful hybrid technocracy governance, as they are both heavily influence by Tao culture and Chan (Zen) Buddhist teachings [& I believe that it is no accident that the USSR could have transitioned into a Technocratic hybrid form of government, but that as it had little teaching of dhamma, that it instead broke apart and Russia became a kleptocracy (i.e. a failed Plutocracy)].  However, I note that Zen (Chan) is a school of thought/guidance that is added on-top of the Buddha's path to enlightenment; and it is in this sense that I am discussing both Technocracy, & Technocracy for the 4th Industrial Revolution (T-4IR) as additional guidance to other political/economic structures, just as Singapore has oligarchical technocrats in a hybrid with democracy/capitalism and China has an oligarchical party full of technocrats in a hybrid with communism/mercantilism.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 02:08:22 AM
As a follow-on to my last post, I believe that it is no accident that both the yin-yang symbol & the monad symbol are similar to a 2D end view of a Hegelian double helical dialect (see the first image), or the 2D end view of DNA (see the second image); and is also related to manifolds for strangle attractors, such as that shown in the third attached image of Sprott's attractor manifold for modeling the human mind.  Next, I posit that it is no accident that the first three images, have similarities to the Go board pattern shown in the fourth image from the video associated with the linked article entitled: "In the World of Tomorrow, Google Plans to Use AI to Do Everything"; & it discusses how AGI and humans can cooperate together to explore the challenges of wicked problems in the real/natural world.

https://futurism.com/in-the-world-of-tomorrow-google-plans-to-use-ai-to-do-everything/

Extract: "… I strongly encourage listening to the latest talk from Demis Hassabis, founder of DeepMind, who lays this plan out clear as day."

More specifically, the Demis Hassabis talk notes that Go is far more complicated than chess, is dominated by players from countries with Taoist influence; and that AGI is now helping human players to excel past the plateau at which their skill has not been able to surpass in over 3,000 years of human playing of Go.  Hopefully, efforts by Technocratic companies like Alphabet, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon, etc to promote open source AI software through means such as OpenAI; will allow the coming development of AGI to unfold in a manner that helps mankind more fully realize its potential.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 02:41:42 AM
I note that Technocracy is derived from Greek words for 'skill' and 'power/rule'; however, I further note that in the modern world 'skill' is typically assumed to be related to technical skill; while in the old Pali language that Buddha Gotoma spoke, 'skill' was by default assumed to be related the ability improve the quality of life, and/or the ability to make progress on the path to nibbana.
To date Technocracy remains more a theoretical goal for governance than a practical reality as at its roots it depends on the concept of a benevolent dictatorship (or philosopher kings) as indicated by the following quote from the Wikipedia article on Technocracy:

"Arguably, the Platonic idea of philosopher-kings represents a sort of technocracy in which the state is run by those with specialist knowledge, in this case, knowledge of the Good, rather than scientific knowledge. The Platonic claim is that those who best understand goodness should be empowered to lead the state, as they would lead it toward the path of happiness. Whilst knowledge of the Good is different to knowledge of science, rulers are here appointed based on a certain grasp of technical skill, rather than democratic mandate.

Technocrats are individuals with technical training and occupations who perceive many important societal problems as being solvable, often while proposing technology-focused solutions. The administrative scientist Gunnar K. A. Njalsson theorizes that technocrats are primarily driven by their cognitive "problem-solution mindsets" and only in part by particular occupational group interests. Their activities and the increasing success of their ideas are thought to be a crucial factor behind the modern spread of technology and the largely ideological concept of the "information society". Technocrats may be distinguished from "econocrats" and "bureaucrats" whose problem-solution mindsets differ from those of the technocrats."


People in general have a hard time transcending the information bubbles of their traditional beliefs/perspective based on their personal experience & the "conventional wisdom" of their peers.  This is also true of the "higher level group" (or the state elite/Plutocrats) who are very use to taking action by ignoring the thin-tail of a risk pdf of the multiple "pressing" concerns that they are dealing with and thus they felt/feel fully justified in ignoring the tail-risk associate with climate change pdfs.  So if one believes that state elite (managerialists) are only doing what they know how to do then we will all be turkeys due to their blindness to the "dragon-tail" climate change risks of following a BAU pathway to this point in time.  However, what if this "higher level group" is well aware of the tail risks and they have intentionally choosing to follow a BAU pathway (including using mass marketing, education and religion as an "... opiate of the masses") of to this point in time is true, then such benevolent dictator technocrats would not be benevolent.

Furthermore, ignoring the tail risks allows decision makers to use deductive logic to reach conclusions, as they assume that their basis is proven so their conclusions are proven (e.g. Trump's populist alternative facts). 

Unfortunately, in the real world their bias contains multiple fat-tailed uncertainties that they are merely choosing to ignore because they believe that they are entitled to live in a stationary world (with fluctuations) rather than in a non-stationary climate change trending world where it is very important to consider that the further one moves down a BAU pathway the fatter the tail of the risk pdf becomes. Increased use of inductive thinking (which acknowledges the uncertainties of the fat-tailed risks rather than ignoring them) has historically allowed science to effectively tackle such fat-tailed problems, & I believe that von Clausewitz's "military genius" (as a 'benevolent dictator) also uses such induction to identify solutions to complex problems clouded by "the fog of war".

In this regards, Taleb also discusses the philosophical problems of using induction (used by managerialist) and how past performance is no indicator of future performance.  Inductive reasoning, also known as induction, is a kind of reasoning that constructs or evaluates propositions (a priori) that are abstractions of observations of individual instances. Inductive reasoning contrasts with deductive reasoning in that a general conclusion is arrived at by specific examples.  Inductive reasoning allows for the possibility that the conclusion be false, even where all of the premises are true.  The philosopher C. D. Broad roughly said that: "induction is the glory of science and the scandal of philosophy" as the Scientific Method makes extensive use of induction.

Governments have repeatedly demonstrated that they are willing to use warfare to promote national self-interest, and it goes without saying that governments are currently, and will continue, using challenging times to promote national interest.  However, Carl von Clausewitz (using the thesis-antithesis-synthesis triad) makes it clear (see the following extract from Wikipedia) that while governments start wars to try to get what they want (normally based on violent emotions), the "fog of war" (or chance) forces on-the-fly changes to the original state policy based on genius (or "military genius").

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_von_Clausewitz (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_von_Clausewitz)

Extract: "In On War, Clausewitz sees all wars as the sum of decisions, actions, and reactions in an uncertain and dangerous context, and also as a socio-political phenomenon. He also stressed the complex nature of war, which encompasses both the socio-political and the operational and stresses the primacy of state policy.

The first is his dialectical thesis: "War is thus an act of force to compel our enemy to do our will." The second, often treated as Clausewitz's 'bottom line,' is in fact merely his dialectical antithesis: "War is merely the continuation of policy by other means." The synthesis of his dialectical examination of the nature of war is his famous "trinity," saying that war is "a fascinating trinity—composed of primordial violence, hatred, and enmity, which are to be regarded as a blind natural force; the play of chance and probability, within which the creative spirit is free to roam; and its element of subordination, as an instrument of policy, which makes it subject to pure reason."  Thus the best shorthand for Clausewitz's trinity should be something like "violent emotion/chance/rational calculation."

Clausewitz acknowledges that friction creates enormous difficulties for the realization of any plan, and the fog of war hinders commanders from knowing what is happening.  It is precisely in the context of this challenge that he develops the concept of military genius, whose capabilities are seen above all in the execution of operations."

I note that while Clausewitz takes Napoleon as a "military genius" that presents a viable resolution to the "wick problem" and chaos of warfare; nevertheless, the power that Napoleon relied upon to create a synthesis/resolution that ended-up with the populist Napoleon as a dictator (like many other populist).  However, I believe that a Buddha is also a "genius" that offers a more peaceful resolution/synthesis to "wick/chaotic" systemic problems end-up with a group oriented solution.  Thus, it may be possible for humans and AGI to interact synergistically, in order to develop something like Jedi Knights (see the two images), in a post-collapse society.

Perhaps the epitome of a benevolent dictatorship (philosopher kings/military genius) is the example of the skills of the human mind w.r.t. the governance of the human body and its need to survive (in the sense of the 'Selfish Gene') in a world full of 'wicked problems' that have driven natural selection (as opposed to survival of the fittest).  In this sense, the following linked video entitled: "Harvard Professor, "We are Building Artificial Brains and Uploading Minds to Cloud right now", discusses efforts of IARPA (Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity) to reverse engineer how animal brains work in order to build artificial brains and to upload minds comparable to, or exceeding, the human mind.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amwyBmWxESA&list=PLe4U-xqAI6TsDYt9z2wd2jwDDFQ7SY7LA (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amwyBmWxESA&list=PLe4U-xqAI6TsDYt9z2wd2jwDDFQ7SY7LA)

See also the following linked article entitled: "Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity":

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligence_Advanced_Research_Projects_Activity (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligence_Advanced_Research_Projects_Activity)

Extract: "IARPA is also involved in high-performance computing and alternative computing methods. In 2015, IARPA was named as one of two foundational research and development agencies in the National Strategic Computing Initiative, with the specific charge of "future computing paradigms offering an alternative to standard semiconductor computing technologies". One such approach is cryogenic superconducting computing, which seeks to use superconductors such as niobium rather than semiconductors to reduce the energy consumption of future exascale supercomputers.

Several programs at IARPA focus on quantum computing and neuroscience. IARPA is a major funder of quantum computing research due to its applications in quantum cryptography. As of 2009, IARPA was said to provide a large portion of quantum computing funding resources in the United States. Quantum computing research funded by IARPA was named Science Magazine's Breakthrough of the Year in 2010, and physicist David Wineland was a winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics for quantum computing research funded by IARPA. IARPA is also involved in neuromorphic computation efforts as part of the U.S. BRAIN Initiative and the National Nanotechnology Initiative's Grand Challenge for Future Computing. IARPA's MICrONS project seeks to reverse engineer one cubic millimiter of brain tissue and use insights from its study to improve machine learning and artificial intelligence."

See also
https://www.iarpa.gov/ (https://www.iarpa.gov/)


In this sense Vipassana teaches that for a benevolent dictatorship to work the mind must be hard wired to experience evidenced based input from the body, and it must but subject to "pounding while being supported" as in being subjected to challenge response verification in order to reduce systemic fragility/entropy.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 02:56:22 AM
As all forms of governance are tied to the economic system that they are based on, I provide some background on what constitutes 'value', socially, ethically, economically and in the marketplace, as cited in the first linked Wikipedia article [however, the first attached image shows that AI, such as AlphaGo, can use policy networks to develop Value nets (even in the face of uncertainties) separately than that determined by the greed-based market place].

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Value)

Extract: "Value (ethics), it may be described as treating actions themselves as abstract objects, putting value to them
- Social imaginary is the set of values, institutions, laws, and symbols common to a particular social group
- Value (economics), a measure of the benefit that may be gained from goods or service
- Theory of value (economics), the study of the concept of economic value
- Value (marketing), the difference between a customer's evaluation of benefits and costs"

Theory of value (economics)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_value_(economics) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_value_(economics))


Marginal utility

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marginal_utility#Marginalist_theory (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marginal_utility#Marginalist_theory)

Extract: "The marginalists of the revolution, however, had been formally concerned with problems in which there was neither risk nor uncertainty. So too with the indifference curve analysis of Slutsky, Hicks, and Allen.
The expected utility hypothesis of Bernoulli and others was revived by various 20th century thinkers, with early contributions by Ramsey (1926), von Neumann and Morgenstern (1944), and Savage (1954). Although this hypothesis remains controversial, it brings not only utility, but a quantified conception of utility (cardinal utility), back into the mainstream of economic thought.
A major reason why quantified models of utility are influential today is that risk and uncertainty have been recognized as central topics in contemporary economic theory. Quantified utility models simplify the analysis of risky decisions because, under quantified utility, diminishing marginal utility implies risk aversion. "

The following Wikipedia article is entitled "Theory of Games and Economic Behavior".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_Games_and_Economic_Behavior (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Theory_of_Games_and_Economic_Behavior)

Extract: "Theory of Games and Economic Behavior, published in 1944 by Princeton University Press, is a book by mathematician John von Neumann and economist Oskar Morgenstern which is considered the groundbreaking text that created the interdisciplinary research field of game theory. In the introduction of its 60th anniversary commemorative edition from the Princeton University Press, the book is described as "the classic work upon which modern-day game theory is based.""


I provide the following quote from the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Prisoner's dilemma" (see also the second image related to the influence of uncertainties on decision making in the prisoner's dilemma), that indicates that in 'wicked problems' like climate change, uncertainty makes it much less likely that we will avoid climate catastrophe than for cases follow clear rules.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner%27s_dilemma (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prisoner%27s_dilemma)

Extract: "In environmental studies, the PD is evident in crises such as global climate-change. It is argued all countries will benefit from a stable climate, but any single country is often hesitant to curb CO2 emissions. The immediate benefit to any one country from maintaining current behavior is wrongly perceived to be greater than the purported eventual benefit to that country if all countries' behavior was changed, therefore explaining the impasse concerning climate-change in 2007.

An important difference between climate-change politics and the prisoner's dilemma is uncertainty; the extent and pace at which pollution can change climate is not known. The dilemma faced by government is therefore different from the prisoner's dilemma in that the payoffs of cooperation are unknown. This difference suggests that states will cooperate much less than in a real iterated prisoner's dilemma, so that the probability of avoiding a possible climate catastrophe is much smaller than that suggested by a game-theoretical analysis of the situation using a real iterated prisoner's dilemma.

Osang and Nandy provide a theoretical explanation with proofs for a regulation-driven win-win situation along the lines of Michael Porter's hypothesis, in which government regulation of competing firms is substantial."

Next I note that the following linked article entitled: “AI Can Beat Us at Poker—Now Let’s See If It Can Work with Us”, discusses how AI research involving games like the Prisoner's Dilemma can be used to investigate how to increase human cooperation:

http://www.cbs.com/shows/big_bang_theory/video/QZ3PzCic8hVPupmysSDqIH8fU_nuzkdD/the-big-bang-theory-the-separation-agitation/ (http://www.cbs.com/shows/big_bang_theory/video/QZ3PzCic8hVPupmysSDqIH8fU_nuzkdD/the-big-bang-theory-the-separation-agitation/)

Extract: “The algorithm that achieved that calculates some promising strategies for the game being played in advance, before learning which to use based on the actions of its co-player. It isn’t likely to become the foundation of future human-robot relations, but is intended to show how experiments can test cooperation, and inspire further research into the idea, says Rahwan.”

Finally, I note that the following reference makes it very clear that most humans (even most experts) have a very weak intuitive understanding of their own ignorance (which results in a poor understanding of gambles/risk; a situation that hopefully T-4IR will work to improve).

Ole Peters and Murray Gell-Mann (Feb. 2, 2016), "Evaluating gambles using dynamics," Chaos, DOI: 10.1063/1.4940236

http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/journal/chaos/26/2/10.1063/1.4940236 (http://scitation.aip.org/content/aip/journal/chaos/26/2/10.1063/1.4940236)

Abstract: "Gambles are random variables that model possible changes in wealth. Classic decision theory transforms money into utility through a utility function and defines the value of a gamble as the expectation value of utility changes. Utility functions aim to capture individual psychological characteristics, but their generality limits predictive power. Expectation value maximizers are defined as rational in economics, but expectation values are only meaningful in the presence of ensembles or in systems with ergodic properties, whereas decision-makers have no access to ensembles, and the variables representing wealth in the usual growth models do not have the relevant ergodic properties. Simultaneously addressing the shortcomings of utility and those of expectations, we propose to evaluate gambles by averaging wealth growth over time. No utility function is needed, but a dynamic must be specified to compute time averages. Linear and logarithmic “utility functions” appear as transformations that generate ergodic observables for purely additive and purely multiplicative dynamics, respectively. We highlight inconsistencies throughout the development of decision theory, whose correction clarifies that our perspective is legitimate. These invalidate a commonly cited argument for bounded utility functions."


Also see:
http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution (http://www.newswise.com/articles/exploring-gambles-reveals-foundational-difficulty-behind-economic-theory-and-a-solution)

Extract: " In the wake of the financial crisis, many started questioning different aspects of the economic formalism.
This included Ole Peters, a Fellow at the London Mathematical Laboratory in the U.K., as well as an external professor at the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico, and Murray Gell-Mann, a physicist who was awarded the 1969 Nobel Prize in physics for his contributions to the theory of elementary particles by introducing quarks, and is now a Distinguished Fellow at the Santa Fe Institute. They found it particularly curious that a field so central to how we live together as a society seems so unsure about so many of its key questions.

So they asked: Might there be a foundational difficulty underlying our current economic theory? Is there some hidden assumption, possibly hundreds of years old, behind not one but many of the current scientific problems in economic theory? Such a foundational problem could have far-reaching practical consequences because economic theory informs economic policy.

As they report in the journal Chaos, from AIP Publishing, the story that emerged is a fascinating example of scientific history, of how human understanding evolves, gets stuck, gets unstuck, branches, and so on.



The key concepts of time and randomness are at the heart of their work. "Questions of an economic nature stood at the beginning of formal thinking about randomness in the 17th century," he explained. "These are all relatively young concepts -- there's nothing in Euclid about probability theory." Think of it simply in terms of: Should I bet money in a game of dice? How much should I pay for an insurance contract? What would be a fair price for a life annuity?
"All of these questions have something to do with randomness, and the way to deal with them in the 17th century was to imagine parallel worlds representing everything that could happen," Gell-Mann said. "To assess the value of some uncertain venture, an average is taken across those parallel worlds."

This concept was only challenged in the mid-19th century when randomness was used formally in a different context -- physics. "Here, the following perspective arose: to assess some uncertain venture, ask yourself how it will affect you in one world only -- namely the one in which you live -- across time," Gell-Mann continued.

"The first perspective -- considering all parallel worlds -- is the one adopted by mainstream economics," explained Gell-Mann. "The second perspective -- what happens in our world across time -- is the one we explore and that hasn't been fully appreciated in economics so far."
The real impact of this second perspective comes from acknowledging the omission of the key concept of time from previous treatments. "We have some 350 years of economic theory involving randomness in one way only -- by considering parallel worlds," said Peters. "What happens when we switch perspectives is astonishing. Many of the open key problems in economic theory have an elegant solution within our framework."

In terms of applications for their work, its key concept can be used "to derive an entire economic formalism," said Peters. In their article, Peters and Gell-Mann explore the evaluation of a gamble. For example, is this gamble better than that gamble? This is the fundamental problem in economics. And from a conceptually different solution there follows a complete new formalism.
They put it to the test after their friend Ken Arrow -- an economist who was the joint winner of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences with John Hicks in 1972 -- suggested applying the technique to insurance contracts. "Does our perspective predict or explain the existence of a large insurance market? It does -- unlike general competitive equilibrium theory, which is the current dominant formalism," Peters said.

And so a different meaning of risk emerges -- taking too much risk is not only psychologically uncomfortable but also leads to real dollar losses. "Good risk management really drives performance over time," Peters added. "This is important in the current rethinking of risk controls and financial market infrastructure."

This concept reaches far beyond this realm and into all major branches of economics. "It turns out that the difference between how individual wealth behaves across parallel worlds and how it behaves over time quantifies how wealth inequality changes," explained Peters. "It also enables refining the notion of efficient markets and solving the equity premium puzzle."

One historically important application is the solution of the 303-year-old St. Petersburg paradox, which involves a gamble played by flipping a coin until it comes up tails and the total number of flips, n, determines the prize, which equals $2 to the nth power. "The expected prize diverges -- it doesn't exist," Peters elaborated. "This gamble, suggested by Nicholas Bernoulli, can be viewed as the first rebellion against the dominance of the expectation value -- that average across parallel worlds -- that was established in the second half of the 17th century."

What's the next step for their work? "We're very keen to develop fully the implications for welfare economics and questions of economic inequality. This is a sensitive subject that needs to be dealt with carefully, including empirical work," noted Peters. "Much is being done behind the scenes -- since this is a conceptually different way of doing things, communication is a challenge, and our work has been difficult to publish in mainstream economics journals."

Their results described in Chaos are easily generalized, which is necessary to reinterpret the full formalism. But it "may not add very much in practical terms, and it gets a little technical." So that's a future "to-do item" for Peters and Gell-Mann.

"Our Chaos paper is a recipe for approaching a wide range of problems," said Peters. "So we're now going through the entire formalism with our collaborators to see where else our perspective is useful.""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 03:19:04 AM
Based on science it appears that the majority of humans are hard wired to take advantage of uncertainty as opportunists (e.g. Donald Trump) to enrich their own interests (via the Tyranny of the Small Decision) at the detriment of the whole group:

Rafael Wlodarski, John Manning , R. I. M. Dunbar, (2015), "Stay or stray? Evidence for alternative mating strategy phenotypes in both men and women", Biology Letters, Volume: 11 Issue: 2, DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2014.0977

http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/11/2/20140977 (http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/11/2/20140977)

http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/roybiolett/11/2/20140977.full.pdf (http://rsbl.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/roybiolett/11/2/20140977.full.pdf)

See also:

http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21642000-promiscuity-and-fidelity-seem-be-specific-biological-adaptations-their (http://www.economist.com/news/science-and-technology/21642000-promiscuity-and-fidelity-seem-be-specific-biological-adaptations-their)

Extract: "Dr Wlodarski and his colleagues calculate that cads outnumber dads by a ratio of 57:43. Loose women, by contrast, are outnumbered by their more constant sisters, but by only 53:47. Each of these ratios tends in the direction of received wisdom. Both, though, are close enough to 50:50 for that fact to need an explanation.


If their analysis is correct, Dr Wlodarski and his colleagues have probably stumbled on a type of equilibrium known to biologists as an evolutionarily stable strategy, in which a way of behaving becomes more advantageous as it gets rarer, and less so as it gets commoner. Cads succeed when dads are frequent, and vice versa. Neither can conquer and neither can vanish. Such equilibria are part of a branch of math called game theory—"

Thus, if T-4IR is going to avoid the creation of an oligarchy of opportunistic ruling technocrats (see the attached Technocracy Inc. image of letting go of the 'love of money'); then it is worth discussing how T-4IR can use the scientific method (including using the Pali canon's concept of 'atapi-sampajano-satima'; and deduction (Faith predominant), induction (Wisdom predominant) and entropy reduction (Energy Predominant) in order to improve our governance systems; which is what I plan to address in a following series of posts.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:15:21 AM
Just to make it clearer as to what type of future technocratic oligarchy I am talking about in this thread, I provide the three following articles.

The first article is entitled: “Mark Zuckerberg had supper with Ohio family that voted for Trump, adding to speculation about a presidential run”.

http://www.salon.com/2017/04/29/mark-zuckerberg-has-supper-with-ohio-family-that-voted-for-trump-adding-to-speculation-about-a-presidential-run/ (http://www.salon.com/2017/04/29/mark-zuckerberg-has-supper-with-ohio-family-that-voted-for-trump-adding-to-speculation-about-a-presidential-run/)

The second linked article is entitled: “Amazon, Alphabet and Microsoft together ended the day $27.4 billion richer

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/04/28/combined-market-cap-of-amazon-alphabet-and-microsoft-gains-27b-after-earnings.html (http://www.cnbc.com/2017/04/28/combined-market-cap-of-amazon-alphabet-and-microsoft-gains-27b-after-earnings.html)

Extract: “Big tech didn't deliver on everything Wall Street wanted Thursday night — but that didn't stop investors from handing $27 billion to Amazon, Microsoft and Alphabet combined.”

The third linked article is entitled: “Surge in Bitcoin & Ethereum Lifts Market Capitalization of Cryptocurrency Ecosystem to Record $33.1 Billion


http://www.razor-forex.com/2017/04/surge-in-bitcoin-ethereum-lifts-market.html (http://www.razor-forex.com/2017/04/surge-in-bitcoin-ethereum-lifts-market.html)


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 10:06:28 AM
Hegel has noted that historically all '-ism' contain a partial truth that set in motion the double helical thesis-antithesis-synthesis dialectic that I mentioned in Reply #221.  In this sense, the alt-right populism that is currently on the upswing around the world (Brexit, Trumpism, Putinism, etc.) contains the partial truth described by Taleb (see Reply #222) that historically the globalists/managerialists have ignored the right-tailed 'Black Swan' events illustrated by the first attached image; that have led to such events as the 2007-2008 global financial collapse, that allegedly drove Steve Bannon into the alt-right camp.  This insensitivity of managerialism to right-tailed risks, per Hegel's dialect, resulted in the alt-right populism 'Black Swan' event (see the second image) that caught the globalists/managerialists (of the WEF) by surprise last year.  Furthermore, Taleb (who is an alt-right darling) has promoted the antifragility approach illustrated by the third attached image; where opportunists (like the alt-right populists) can benefit themselves via tyranny of the small decision (survival of the fittest) actions (see the fourth image, & think of the movie "The Big Short"); which helps to explain why, in theory, Technocracy is anti-populist, anti-corruption and anti-deception.

As a result of the alt-right populist upswing around the world the Davos (WEF) globalist/managerialist crowd have done a lot of soul searching and as the linked WEF article entitled: "Why we should all have a basic income", indicates is now promoting such measures as universal basic income, UBI, in order to reduce the impacts on the old-industry (fossil fuels, rust-belt) workers due to the productivity of the 4th Industrial Revolution.  I note that in theory the dramatic increases in efficiencies created by the quantum Internet circa 2028 should allow future technocrats to pay for benefits such as UBI; which, in theory, could put an end to the current cycle of alt-right populist upswing.  If so this would put globalist/managerialists (including the technocratic China) increasingly back in control from 2028 to the technological singularity circa 2045.

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/01/why-we-should-all-have-a-basic-income/ (https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2017/01/why-we-should-all-have-a-basic-income/)

Extract: "The idea of basic income is deceivingly simple sounding, but in reality it’s like an iceberg with far more to be revealed as you dive deeper. Its big picture price tag in the form of investing in human capital for far greater returns, and its effects on what truly motivates us are but glimpses of these depths. There are many more. Some are already known, like the positive effects on social cohesion and physical and mental health as seen in the 42% drop in crime in Namibia and the 8.5% reduction in hospitalizations in Dauphin, Manitoba. Debts tend to fall. Entrepreneurship tends to grow. Other effects have yet to be discovered by further experiments. But the growing body of evidence behind cash transfers in general point to basic income as something far more transformative to the future of work than even its long history of consideration has imagined."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 10:21:30 AM
In Reply 224, I have postulated that an Eastern-influenced scientific method approach could be used to improve the sustainability of our current socio-economic systems/institution, by changing such systems/institutions to better simulate 'natural selection' instead of 'survival of the fittest' processes.  To me the application of 'natural selection' processes to socio-economic systems/institutions would require 'skillful' applications of the atapi-sampajano-satima process and avoidance of 'unskillful' applications.  Where 'skillful' application would require the development of game-theory type rules governing the agents acting with the socio-economic systems/institutions so the agents are subjected to:

(a) Atapi/ardent effort can metaphorically symbolized by the challenge-response authentication role of Seraph [see the first image], the energetic/burning angelic messenger [or Maxell's information demon] between mankind and sampajano, in the Matrix movie.  In the natural selection analogy, atapi represents the acknowledgment of suffering [in the mundane world] in the moment [in accordance with the first noble truth]; while in the survival of the fittest analogy, faux-atapi represents the effort to avoid suffering by passing the suffering on to 'others' via systemic isolation.  While in the Hegelian dialectic double helix metaphor, atapi represents the tension holding the double strands of thesis and antithesis together.

(b) Sampajano/proper understanding-equanimity can be metaphorically symbolized in the Matrix movie by the two angelic wings represented by Neo and Trinity [see the second & third images, respectively], required to maintain balance in life.  In the natural selection analogy sampajano represents the wisdom of accepting change in a Bayesian sense of changing a priori into a posteriori; while in the survival of the fittest analogy, faux-sampajano represents the mental post-traumatic stress syndrome associated with 'othering'.  While in the Hegelian dialectic double helix metaphor, sampajano represents the synthesis resulting from the interaction of the thesis, and anthesis, strands.

(c) Satima/proper awareness can be metaphorically symbolized in the Matrix movie by the happiness resulting from accepting the free-will of others [see the fourth image of Sati], within a timeless evolved free-will information Matrix.  In the natural selection analogy satima represents the happiness (reduction of mundane suffering) of living aware of other's well-being (such a living empathetically for the common good); while in the survival of the fittest analogy, faux satima represents the addiction/aversion associated from profiting at others expense.  While in the Hegelian dialectic double helix metaphor, satima represents the elimination of '-isms', via the collapse of the double strands due to the lack of tension that causing another turn of the dialectic spiral.

With the coming of Artificial General Intelligence, AGI, during the 4th Industrial Revolution (thus enabling T-4IR) it will be critical to present the machine learning with systemic models of natural selection (atapi-sampajano-satima) rather than systemic models of survival of the fittest; which in the Matrix analogy ended in a Machine War and a global socio-economic collapse (which I have suggested might occur sometime between 2045 & 2060).

E pluribus unum — Latin for "Out of many, one"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 04:19:52 PM
While my previous posts have focused on technocrats in Singapore & China, I would be remiss to fail to note that Narendra Modi, in India, is also a technocrat, and per the linked article entitled: "China, India Become Climate Leaders as West Falters", both India and China are leading the western countries in honoring their commitments to the Paris Agreement (see the attached image).  Also, the findings of this article support my belief that climate change will likely significantly contribute to a socio-economic collapse circa 2050-2060 (note that per the image not only are western nations failing on climate action but the tropical rainforests are currently under severe assault, which both constricts a vital carbon sink and creates an new source of carbon emissions, which sets-up my next series of posts that hopefully will address T-4IR in post-collapse conditions using metaphors from "The Matrix" trilogy:

http://www.climatecentral.org/news/china-india-climate-leaders-west-falters-21377 (http://www.climatecentral.org/news/china-india-climate-leaders-west-falters-21377)

Extract: "Less than two years after world leaders signed off on a historic United Nations climate treaty in Paris in late 2015, and following three years of record-setting heat worldwide, climate policies are advancing in developing countries but stalling or regressing in richer ones.

In the Western hemisphere, where centuries of polluting fossil fuel use have created comfortable lifestyles, the fight against warming has faltered largely due to the rise of far-right political groups and nationalist movements. As numerous rich countries have foundered, India and China have emerged as global leaders in tackling global warming."

Deforestation has long been a major problem in the swampy Congo Basin in Africa, which traverses a number of poor countries and is home to one of the world’s greatest expanses of carbon-storing tropical forest. Timber is being harvested and trees are being cleared for mines, plantations and grazing.

The problem has recently been getting much worse, with “vast” new logging hotspots identified in an analysis of satellite images published in February in the journal Environmental Research Letters. Researchers found that the rate of deforestation more than doubled in the Democratic Republic of Congo 2011 and 2014.

“There are billions of tons of carbon locked up in those forests,” said Simon Counsell, executive director of the nonprofit Rainforest Foundation UK. “The threats are escalating.”"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:00:21 PM
In the Matrix/Reloaded/Revolutions trilogy, wisdom is not only received from Zen Buddhism, Taoism and Hindi culture, but also from the Old Testament & the Kabbalah. In this regards, Agent Smith (see the first image) is a metaphor for the enslavement of ego that creates the Matrix of suffering that we all create/inhabit but which is an illusion and which comes to an end when Neo surrenders thus destroying ego/Smith at the "End of Days":

Extract from the Future Blessings for Zion"

"Isaiah 54: …If anyone fiercely assails you it will not be from Me.  Whoever assails you will fall because of you.  "Behold, I Myself have created the smith who blows the fire of coals And brings out a weapon for its work; And I have created the destroyer to ruin.  "No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD,  And their vindication is from Me," declares the LORD.…

Isaiah 54:16 Commentaries
54:11-17 Let the people of God, when afflicted and tossed, think they hear God speaking comfortably to them by these words, taking notice of their griefs and fears. The church is all glorious when full of the knowledge of God; for none teaches like him. It is a promise of the teaching and gifts of the Holy Spirit. All that are taught of God are taught to love one another. This seems to relate especially to the glorious times to succeed the tribulations of the church. Holiness, more than anything, is the beauty of the church. God promises protection. There shall be no fears within; there shall be no fightings without. Military men value themselves on their splendid titles, but God calls them, Wasters made to destroy, for they make wasting and destruction their business. He created them, therefore he will serve his own designs by them. The day is coming when God will reckon with wicked men for their hard speeches, Jude 1:15. Security and final victory are the heritage of each faithful servant of the Lord. The righteousness by which they are justified, and the grace by which they are sanctified, are the gift of God, and the effect of his special love. Let us beseech him to sanctify our souls, and to employ us in his service.

Proverbs: Commit your works to the LORD And your plans will be established. The LORD has made everything for its own purpose, Even the wicked for the day of evil. Everyone who is proud in heart is an abomination to the LORD; Assuredly, he will not be unpunished.…"

This connects Agent Smith to technology (i.e. a blacksmith who uses fossil fuels to forge tools & weapons, see the third attached image) and by extension to capitalism that is facilitating our pathway of overshoot.  In this sense Agent Smith represents systemic controls to standardize people/markets by using aversion (see the first image as an example of Smith's aversion to humanity) to stamp-out intelligence that does not fit the system's model (simulacra).  However, the system model (simulacra) that we are talking about here resides in the brains/minds of people who have either created or bought into the system.  Also, I point out that the flipside of aversion in a two-faced/pre-conditioned mind is craving; as represented in the Matrix as the Merovingian (see the fourth attached image).

See also the following linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Zion", as in 'The Matrix" trilogy Zion is the interface between the mundane world that mankind inhabits and the unknowable; which can be taken as the bubbles that people experience as compared to the information-based Holographic Universe, which AGI may interface with at the technological singularity circa 2045.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zion


Extract: "In Kabbalah, the more esoteric reference is made to Tzion being the spiritual point from which reality emerges, located in the Holy of Holies of the First, Second and Third Temple."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:11:04 PM
The Matrix recurrently focuses on the many transitions one makes while fighting to overcome uncertainty/ignorance, and in this post I continue the received wisdom from the Kabbalah & I focus on Seraph (who in the Bible/Tora/Kabbalah is a Seraphim, or a high angels who act go-betweens mankind and God), see the following Wikipedia linked article and associated extract. 
In the phrase/process "atapi sampajano satima", Seraph could be thought of as atapi/effort, the energetic/burning messenger (see the attached image) between mankind and higher understanding/insight (sampajano/satima) who also authenticates the truth from illusion (i.e. challenge-response authentication).  In Revolutions Seraph had formerly been a protégé of the Merovingian (i.e. they were both fallen angels); but Seraph rebelled (against hedonistic clinging/craving) and came to protect both the Oracle & Sati (insight).

In Kabbalah, the seraphim are continually "burning-up" in selflessness; and in the HIOTTOE atapi results in a "burning-up" of illusion/ego/pride leading to an understanding /equinity and reflected wisdom/insight regarding the constantly changing nature of the reality resulting from the interfaces between soulless-free will in an information network (or holographic universe).  In a quantum information sense Seraph can be thought of a Maxwell's Demon (see the second, third & fourth images) energetically fighting entropy and burning with a glowing light (as seen by Neo).
Further, I pointed-out that the Buddha thought that following his death that mankind would become less skillful about how to gain infight on how to overcome uncertainty; which seems to be the case (even though we have become technologically more skillful).   Hopefully, mankind will learn how to better fight against wicked problems like climate change after the coming singularity, so that they can selflessly return to the paradise that they lost without the pride of Lucifer:


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seraph_(The_Matrix)

"Whoever he summons, he first tests that person with another battle, in order to "test his/her heart's resolve" (or, more technically, a Challenge-response authentication).

In Revolutions, Trinity and Morpheus meet with the Oracle so that she can help them locate Neo. She explains that he lies within a place that is neither the Matrix nor the Machine world: a construct created by the Trainman, who works for the Merovingian. Seraph leads Morpheus and Trinity into the Megacity's subway system in search of the Trainman, but he eludes them in a foot chase and exchange of gunfire. The three then track down the Merovingian at his decadent nightclub, Club Hel.

During the assault on Hel's gates, Seraph is referred as "wingless", by one of the guards and the Merovingian refers to him as "his protégé". The three make their way to the club and defeat a number of the Merovingian's guards. The Merovingian calls him the "Prodigal Child" returning and "Judas", suggesting that Seraph betrayed the Merovingian to serve the Oracle. He also calls Seraph "L'ange sans ses ailes", which is French for "The angel without its wings."

Later, Seraph tries to flee with Sati, a program seeking refuge in the Matrix, from the increasingly powerful Smith. In due course, Smith catches up to them. Seraph mentions that he has defeated Smith in the past; nonetheless, Smith assimilates them and the Oracle, gaining her powers of precognition, adding three more copies of himself to his growing collective of Smiths.
Upon Smith's destruction at Neo's hands, all the programs and minds that Smith has infiltrated are freed from his influence, including Seraph's. He meets the Oracle in a park as Sati creates a beautiful sunrise in Neo's honor.

… it was revealed that Seraph had been an Agent of the first iteration of the Matrix (the Seraphim), who resembled angels. He had ended up in the employment of the Merovingian, where he had remained for some time. After an unknown period of being an enforcer for him, he had rebelled, and had been tortured, his wings removed. It has not been revealed how he escaped.

Seraph is a biblical allusion to the first of nine orders of angels, the Seraphim (singular Seraph). This allusion is also evidenced by the fire-like appearance of Seraph when Neo sees him in his coded form. It is also hinted when the Merovingian's guards state that he is "wingless." The word 'seraph' comes from the Hebrew word saraph meaning 'burning one'."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:22:02 PM
Leon C. Megginson was a Professor of Management and Marketing at Louisiana State University at Baton Rouge. Megginson wrote in 1963: ‘According to Darwin’s Origin of Species, it is not the most intellectual of the species that survives; it is not the strongest that survives; but the species that survives is the one that is able best to adapt and adjust to the changing environment in which it finds itself.’ (Megginson, ‘Lessons from Europe for American Business’, Southwestern Social Science Quarterly (1963) 44(1): 3-13, at p. 4.).  Megginson had an interest in the theories of evolution through ‘mutual aid’ advocated by the Russian zoologist Karl Kessler, and his statements about Darwin clearly reflect that.

As some people may well misunderstand the meaning of the paraphrased quote.  Therefore, I provide the following linked articles that elaborate on Karl Kessler's concept of "mutual aid"; which illustrate that as climate change amplifies the impacts of nature to the point where they are comparable to man's ability to cope with those impacts; then natural selection will help those who cooperate to better survive (see the attached image of Zion from "The Matrix" trilogy):


The first linked article explains who Karl Kessler was and what influence his paper "The Law of Mutual Aid" had:

http://www.antwiki.org/wiki/Kessler,_Karl_Fedorovich_(1815-1881) (http://www.antwiki.org/wiki/Kessler,_Karl_Fedorovich_(1815-1881))

Extract: "In 1879 K. P. Kessler, zoologist and former rector of St. Petersburg University, read a paper entitled "The Law of Mutual Aid" before the members of the St. Petersburg Society of Naturalists.

Organic evolution depend more on the union between individuals of the same species in the struggle between its members."

The second linked article discusses how Kessler used the concept of "mutual aid" to criticize those who follow the Hobbesian notion of "Survival of the Fittest":
https://www.coursehero.com/file/p36j3s7/Kessler-began-his-address-On-the-Law-of-Mutual-Aid-by-criticizing-those-who/ (https://www.coursehero.com/file/p36j3s7/Kessler-began-his-address-On-the-Law-of-Mutual-Aid-by-criticizing-those-who/)

Extract: "“He [Karl F. Kessler] began his address ‘On the Law of Mutual Aid’ by criticizing those who invoked ‘the cruel, so - called law of the struggle for existence’ to resolve social and moral issues.” – Todes (1989: 110)."

The third article is:  "Mutual aid and the foraging mode of thought: Re-reading Kropotkin on the Khoisan - Alan Barnard", which discusses the work of the scientist, anarchist, and Russian prince, Pyotr Alexeyevich Kropotkin (1842–1921) who applied Karl Kessler's concept of "mutual aid" to the Khoisan bushman:

https://libcom.org/history/mutual-aid-foraging-mode-thought-re-reading-kropotkin-khoisan-alan-barnard (https://libcom.org/history/mutual-aid-foraging-mode-thought-re-reading-kropotkin-khoisan-alan-barnard)

Extract: "Peter Kropotkin's work offers an insight into the workings of pre-state as well as state societies. This paper utilizes Kropotkin's notion of ‘mutual aid’ and argues for a consideration of mode of thought (rather than mode of production), both in the analysis of certain kinds of stateless societies and in the analysis of differences between societies of differing levels of complexity. It examines specifically Kropotkin's ideas on ‘mutual aid among savages’ and his comments on Khoisan (Bushman and Khoekhoe) social organization in light of later ethnographic findings. The conclusion is that Kropotkin's optimistic social theory remains applicable, and that the historical trajectory he saw, emphasizing the significance of voluntary organizations over state formations, is worthy of renewed interest.

The mutual-aid tendency in man has so remote an origin, and is so deeply interwoven with all the past evolution of the human race, that it has been maintained by mankind up to the present time, notwithstanding all vicissitudes of history. Peter Kropotkin (1987a: 180).
The concept ‘mutual aid’ (vzaimopomoshch') is attributed to Russian zoologist Karl Fredorovich Kessler and dates from about 1880 (Kropotkin 1987a: 14, 24–27). The chapter of concern here is Kropotkin's Chapter 3, ‘Mutual Aid among Savages’ (1987a: 74–101), written in 1891 and first published as part of a series in the journal, The Nineteenth Century. Kropotkin used the word ‘savages’ in its neutral, and not its modern derogatory sense, and I shall do the same in this summary of his chapter.

The first thing Kropotkin does is to dispel the Hobbesian notion that primitive life was one of ‘war of each against all’. He suggests that mutual support, rather than mutual struggle, is evolutionarily adaptive. He says that those ‘tribes’ who develop an avoidance of internal competition stand the best chance of Darwinian survival."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:25:22 PM
The first linked article (the second & third links are for background on 4IR) is entitled: "The Fourth Industrial Revolution Awakens the Importance of the Human Spirit."  If we understand "spirit" to mean not soul but rather the interaction of "free will" with dhamma then wisdom can be found in the mindful application of spirit much as Maxwell's Demon (see the fourth linked article) can be used to reduce entropy in a closed system.  In this sense the attached image from Matrix Revolutions shows Neo becoming one with everything (one with dhamma), as we will all better understand when the Fourth Industrial Revolution, 4IR, connects us with the Internet of Everything, IoE (or by analogy the Matrix), thus reducing systemic isolation (especially for those current youths who will be around following the coming partial socio-economic collapse prior to 2060, as shown for Zion in the immediate prior post):

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/yuhyun-park/the-fourth-industrial-rev_b_11325636.html (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/yuhyun-park/the-fourth-industrial-rev_b_11325636.html)

Extract: "But one obvious fact is that the Fourth Industrial Revolution will yield another shift in the focus of humanness - shifting from mind to spirit. Just as the Second Industrial Revolution triggered the replacement of human physical labor with machines, the Fourth Industrial Revolution will trigger the replacement of human mental labor with artificial intelligence and robots.

The wisdom of spirit will become more important than knowledge and skills which can be aggregated through the Internet. A humble and sacrificial spirit to forgive others, even enemies, will be more important than selfish emotion and one’s own mind, which will often be considered as a failing factor compared to no-error machines. Love and respect for the weak and troubled will not be calculated in the machine’s optimization.

So this is good news. The Fourth Industrial Revolution has finally opened up a new era to the human race challenging us to focus on understanding who we really are. Yes. Indeed we are the spirit mastering the body and mind. As the Second Industrial Revolution yielded a current education system to sharpen our minds, we now need a new education system that awakens our spirit. The importance of the human spirit should be the guiding principle for future of education in the Fourth Industrial Revolution."


See also:
Are you ready for the 4th Industrial Revolution?

http://www.cio.co.nz/article/604721/prepared-4th-industrial-revolution/ (http://www.cio.co.nz/article/604721/prepared-4th-industrial-revolution/)

Extract: "The Fourth Industrial Revolution, according to Canterbury Tech, blurs the lines between the physical, digital, and biological spheres.

“It moves from simple digitisation (the Third Industrial Revolution) to innovation based on combinations of technologies. Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence, robotics, the Internet of Things, autonomous vehicles, 3D printing, nanotechnology, biotechnology, materials science, energy storage, and quantum computing will continue to accelerate and progress."

&

The fourth industrial revolution 'will be a business reality within the next 10 years'

http://www.pcr-online.biz/news/read/the-fourth-industrial-revolution-will-be-a-business-reality-within-the-next-10-years/038569 (http://www.pcr-online.biz/news/read/the-fourth-industrial-revolution-will-be-a-business-reality-within-the-next-10-years/038569)

Extract: "Software giant Oracle has teamed up with the manufacturers' organisation EEF to help get companies fit for the 'fourth industrial revolution', or 4IR.

4IR is apparently being driven by digitisation, big data and other rapid advances in technology.
Eight in ten manufacturers (80 per cent) say that this next industrial transformation will be a business reality within the next ten years."


Regarding Maxell's Demon see:

In the future Maxwell's Demon (as a metaphor for the relationship between the extraction of work from a system and the information about this system, see the attached image) will not only allow for the design of more efficient cooling & energy extraction systems; but will also facilitate the use of AI to create a more sustainable global socio-economic system (with less waste by improved use of information):

http://motherboard.vice.com/read/physicists-test-maxwells-demon-with-beams-of-light-2 (http://motherboard.vice.com/read/physicists-test-maxwells-demon-with-beams-of-light-2)

Extract: "The demon’s ability to create this temperature difference without the expenditure of work appeared to Maxwell to be in violation of the second law of thermodynamics, which states that two bodies of different temperature, when brought into contact with one another in isolation from the rest of the universe, will establish a thermodynamic equilibrium. Another way of putting this is that in an isolated system, entropy never decreases—although Maxwell’s hypothetical did in fact seem to allow the entropy of the system to decrease.

In the years since Maxwell initially proposed his hypothetical, physicists have managed to satisfactorily explain away the evident paradox of Maxwell’s demon. According to some of these physicists’ explanations, although Maxwell’s demon is not directly doing work on the system, it is extracting information about the system by sorting the molecules. The process of extracting this information about the system is a form of work, and therefore the entropy of the system does in fact increase in accordance with the second law of thermodynamics.

Although physicists were able to show that Maxwell’s paradox didn’t actually violate the second law of thermodynamics, the exact nature of the relationship between the extraction of work from a system and the information about this system acquired through measurements which explained the paradox was not that well understood. This was the relationship that the Oxford team hoped to elucidate with their photonic demon.



According to the team, its experiment is the first step toward gaining a better understanding of how thermodynamics plays out on microscales. A better understanding of the link between information and thermodynamics could have a variety of real world applications, ranging from more efficient cooling and energy extraction systems to application in quantum information technologies.

“Personally I think that sort of technology will have a real impact on meeting the energy challenge facing the world,” said Dahlsten. “We are already thinking of ways in which features such as entanglement can be introduced in future experiments based on this one, as our interests gravitate around quantum information.”"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 05:38:05 PM
In the beginning of Matrix Revolutions the little Indian girl Sati saves Neo from death (at the end of Reloaded) by guiding him to limbo (i.e. Mobil Ave or the Train Station) where he encounters an Indian 'family', see the first image.  Rama-Kandra (the father, see the second image) and his wife (Kamala, see the third image), who are both programs, have created a daughter, Sati.  To the Architect's way of thinking Sati is a program without purpose and will be deleted from the machine mainframe unless her parents can hide her.   They make a deal with The Merovingian to smuggle Sati into the Matrix, where The Oracle will care for her.  Why do these programs care what happens to Sati? Why did they create her in the first place? The movie indicates that the answer is unconditional love (see the fourth image, which correlates Sati with the randomness created by the Oracle).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sati_(Buddhism)

Extract: " Sati (in Pali;  Sanskrit: smṛti) is mindfulness or awareness, a spiritual or psychological faculty (indriya) that forms an essential part of Buddhist practice. It is the first factor of the Seven Factors of Enlightenment. "Correct" or "right" mindfulness

Bhikkhu Bodhi also points to the meaning of "sati" as "memory":
The word derives from a verb, sarati, meaning “to remember,” and occasionally in Pali sati is still explained in a way that connects it with the idea of memory. But when it is used in relation to meditation practice, we have no word in English that precisely captures what it refers to. An early translator cleverly drew upon the word mindfulness, which is not even in my dictionary. This has served its role admirably, but it does not preserve the connection with memory, sometimes needed to make sense of a passage.

The practice of mindfulness supports analysis resulting in the arising of wisdom (Pali: paññā, Sanskrit: prajñā)

In the Satipaṭṭhāna Sutta, sati and sampajañña are combined with atappa (Pali; Sanskrit: ātapaḥ), or "ardency," and the three together comprise yoniso manisikara (Pali; Sanskrit: yoniśas manaskāraḥ), "appropriate attention" or "wise reflection.""


In the way of backstory, the Matrix trilogy is a story about the doctrine salvation (soteriology), using the Bhagavad Gita about the battle of Dharma-Yudhha to establish dharma (dhamma in Pali can be taken as the laws of the universe, and proper understanding those laws can lead to timeless Nibbana) as an action packed spiritual inspiration; and the following linked Wikipedia link explains that the Gita is a synthesis of Hindi, Buddhist, Jain and yogic soteriologies together with Indian, Greek, Iranian and Kushan cultures.

Sati's father Rama Kandra, (usually Ramchandra) was an incarnation of Vishnu in Hinduism. He destroyed demons in his quest to rid the world of evil.  Sati's mother Kamala is another name for Laksmi; which, is the Hindu goddess of wealth and good fortune. The Rama Kandra family are closely tied to the themes of Hinduism, including the Bhagavad Gita, in the Matrix.  The Merovingian is a decadent aristocrat who rules the 'underworld', like Hades from Greek mythology. Hades was also the character who stole Persephone (the Merovingian's wife) and forced her to live with him in Hell.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhagavad_Gita

Extract: "The Gita is set in a narrative framework of a dialogue between Pandava prince Arjuna and his guide and charioteer Lord Krishna. Facing the duty as a warrior to fight the Dharma Yudhha or righteous war between Pandavas and Kauravas, Arjuna is counselled by Lord Krishna to "fulfill his Kshatriya (warrior) duty as a warrior and establish Dharma." Inserted in this appeal to kshatriya dharma (chivalry) is "a dialogue ... between diverging attitudes concerning methods toward the attainment of liberation (moksha)". The Bhagavad Gita was exposed to the world through Sanjaya, who senses and cognizes all the events of the battlefield. Sanjaya is Dhritarashtra's advisor and also his charioteer.

The so-called "Hindu Synthesis" emerged during the early Classical period (200 BCE - 300 CE) of Hinduism.

It developed in interaction with other religions and peoples:
The emerging self-definitions of Hinduism were forged in the context of continuous interaction with heterodox religions (Buddhists, Jains, Ajivikas) throughout this whole period, and with foreign people (Yavanas, or Greeks; Sakas, or Scythians; Pahlavas, or Parthians; and Kusanas, or Kushans) from the third phase on [between the Mauryan empire and the rise of the Guptas].

The Bhagavad Gita is the sealing achievement of this Hindu Synthesis, incorporating various religious traditions.

Deutsch and Dalvi note that the authors of the Bhagavad Gita "must have seen the appeal of the soteriologies both of the "heterodox" traditions of Buddhism and Jainism and of the more "orthodox" ones of Samkhya and Yoga", while the Brahmanic tradition emphasised "the significance of dharma as the instrument of goodness"."

See also:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dharma-yuddha

Here, metaphors like the programs Rama Kandra and Kamala represent sub-systems/sub-structures of "free will" within the larger Holographic Universe, while Sati brings unconditioned expression of "free will" in each new moment as represented by a child's fresh view of the world.  However, as sati also means memory its freshness can only be understood in term of the endless process of atapi sampajano satima (or "wise reflection."); which is why the Oracle keeps reminding Neo that he has already made his choice but now needs to understand why.

Edit: This is relevant to a post-technological singularity understanding of AGI's interface with mankind & T-4IR, assuming that we indeed live in a Holographic Universe.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 30, 2017, 07:03:36 PM
With regards to the interconnection between the Holographic Universe and the T-4IR, the Hegelian dialectic double helix metaphor, with regard to cravings & aversions, can also shed light on the bubbles that people live in, due to their willful denial of change.  This observation can then provide insights in to how information theory associated with the Holographic Principle addresses issues like duality, transitions and the correspondence principle.

See the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "AdS/CFT correspondence"; which underpins the Holographic Principle/Theory.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AdS/CFT_correspondence (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AdS/CFT_correspondence)

Extract: "In theoretical physics, the anti-de Sitter/conformal field theory correspondence, sometimes called Maldacena duality or gauge/gravity duality, is a conjectured relationship between two kinds of physical theories. On one side are anti-de Sitter spaces (AdS) which are used in theories of quantum gravity, formulated in terms of string theory or M-theory. On the other side of the correspondence are conformal field theories (CFT) which are quantum field theories, including theories similar to the Yang–Mills theories that describe elementary particles.
The duality represents a major advance in our understanding of string theory and quantum gravity. This is because it provides a non-perturbative formulation of string theory with certain boundary conditions and because it is the most successful realization of the holographic principle, an idea in quantum gravity originally proposed by Gerard 't Hooft and promoted by Leonard Susskind.

It also provides a powerful toolkit for studying strongly coupled quantum field theories. Much of the usefulness of the duality results from the fact that it is a strong-weak duality: when the fields of the quantum field theory are strongly interacting, the ones in the gravitational theory are weakly interacting and thus more mathematically tractable. This fact has been used to study many aspects of nuclear and condensed matter physics by translating problems in those subjects into more mathematically tractable problems in string theory.

The AdS/CFT correspondence was first proposed by Juan Maldacena in late 1997. Important aspects of the correspondence were elaborated in articles by Steven Gubser, Igor Klebanov, and Alexander Markovich Polyakov, and by Edward Witten. By 2015, Maldacena's article had over 10,000 citations, becoming the most highly cited article in the field of high energy physics."


The following reference discusses how the Holographic Principle can by related to Holographic Entanglement Entropy; which can be utilized to reduce systemic suffering.

Davood Momeni, Mir Faizal, Ratbay Myrzakulov (2017), "Holographic Cavalieri Principle as a Universal relation between Holographic Complexity and Holographic Entanglement Entropy"


https://arxiv.org/pdf/1703.01337.pdf (https://arxiv.org/pdf/1703.01337.pdf)

Abstract: "In this paper, we will propose a universal relation between the holographic complexity (dual to a volume in AdS) and the holographic entanglement entropy (dual to an area in AdS). We will explicitly demonstrate that our conjuncture hold for all a metric asymptotic to AdS3, and then argue that such a relation should hold in general due to the AdS version of the Cavalieri principle. We will demonstrate that it hold for Janus solution, which have been recently been obtained in type IIB string theory. We will also show that this conjecture holds for a circular disk. This conjecture will be used to show that the proposal that the complexity equals action, and the proposal that the complexity equal volume can represent the same physics. Thus, using this conjecture, we will show that the black holes are fastest computers, using the proposal that complexity equals volume."

Extract: "In this letter, we propose that a non-trivial but universal relation exists between the holographic quantum complexity and the holographic entanglement entropy. As this relates a quantity which is dual to a volume in AdS to a quantity which is dual to an area in AdS, it can be considered as a holographic version of Cavalieri principle. Furthermore, in analogy with the usual Cavalieri principle, the regions analysed were assumed to exist between two parallel AdS slice. We argued that such a conjuncture should hold in general, as it is based on the AdS version of the cavalieri principle. We also explicitly demonstrated this to be the case for AdS3. However, as it is not possible to obtain a general expression for the holographic entanglement entropy, we made a conjecture that such a universal relation should hold. This is because the higher dimensional case would be conceptually similar to this case, however, they would be computationally more complicated."


Next, I note that "The Matrix" portrays the fractal nature of the universe (& the matrix), and in the following linked Wikipedia article, "random walk" behavior (frequently associated with free will expression) resulting in larger aggregations that would follow the math developed by Witten & Sander for diffusion-limited aggregation, DLA, (see the  linked Wikipedia DLA article and the following associated linked reference by Arneodo et al 1993). 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diffusion-limited_aggregation (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diffusion-limited_aggregation)

Extract: " Diffusion-limited aggregation (DLA) is the process whereby particles undergoing a random walk due to Brownian motion cluster together to form aggregates of such particles."

Also see:

Arneodo, A., Argoul, F., Muzy, J.F. & Tabard, M. (1993), "Beyond Classical Multifractal Analysis Using Wavelets: Uncovering a Multiplicative Process Hidden in the Geometrical Complexity of Diffusion Limited Aggregates", Complex Geometry, Patterns, and Scaling in Nature and Society, Vol 1, Issue 3,  DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1142/S0218348X93000666 (http://dx.doi.org/10.1142/S0218348X93000666)

http://www.worldscientific.com/doi/abs/10.1142/S0218348X93000666 (http://www.worldscientific.com/doi/abs/10.1142/S0218348X93000666)
or
https://www.ma.utexas.edu/users/davis/reu/ch3/cwt/fractals.pdf (https://www.ma.utexas.edu/users/davis/reu/ch3/cwt/fractals.pdf)

Abstract: "We emphasize the wavelet transform as a very promising tool for solving the inverse fractal problem.  We show that a dynamical system which leaves invariant a fractal object can be uncovered from the space-scale arrangement of its wavelet transform modulus maxima.  We illustrate our theoretical considerations on pedagogical examples including Bernoulli invariant measures of linear and nonlinear Markov maps as well as the invariant measure of period-doubling dynamical systems at the onset of chaos.  We apply this wavelet based technique to analyze the fractal properties of DLA azimuthal Cantor sets defined by intersecting the inner frozen region of large mass off-lattice DLA clusters with a circle.  This study clearly reveals the existence of an underlying multiplicative process that is likely to account for the Fibonacci structural ordering recently discovered in the apparently disordered arborescent DLA morphology.  The statistical relevance of the golden mean arithmetic to the fractal hierarchy of the DLA azimuthal Cantor sets is demonstrated."



Next, the linked Wikipedia article addresses Complex systems:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Complex_systems (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Complex_systems)

Extract: "The emergence of complexity theory shows a domain between deterministic order and randomness which is complex. This is referred as the "edge of chaos".

When one analyzes complex systems, sensitivity to initial conditions, for example, is not an issue as important as within the chaos theory in which it prevails. As stated by Colander, the study of complexity is the opposite of the study of chaos. Complexity is about how a huge number of extremely complicated and dynamic sets of relationships can generate some simple behavioral patterns, whereas chaotic behavior, in the sense of deterministic chaos, is the result of a relatively small number of non-linear interactions.

Therefore, the main difference between chaotic systems and complex systems is their history. Chaotic systems do not rely on their history as complex ones do. Chaotic behaviour pushes a system in equilibrium into chaotic order, which means, in other words, out of what we traditionally define as 'order'. On the other hand, complex systems evolve far from equilibrium at the edge of chaos. They evolve at a critical state built up by a history of irreversible and unexpected events, which physicist Murray Gell-Mann called "an accumulation of frozen accidents." In a sense chaotic systems can be regarded as a subset of complex systems distinguished precisely by this absence of historical dependence. Many real complex systems are, in practice and over long but finite time periods, robust. However, they do possess the potential for radical qualitative change of kind whilst retaining systemic integrity. Metamorphosis serves as perhaps more than a metaphor for such transformations."

Finally I note that, the second image shows how chaos theory strange attractors (including climate attractors, or models of the mind) product fractal patterns; that the third image provides a "Matrix" metaphor of how the human mind misinterprets the fractal nature of the Holographic Universe; and the fourth image shows Adinkras structures from String Theory that illustrate how natural selection can produce error correction code within a Holographic Theory interpretation of the universe (and thus one would expect that the use of natural selection routines and AGI would result in error correction code for use in T-4IR policy and value networks).

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 03, 2017, 04:41:23 PM
The linked reference indicates that the race to commercialize quantum science is heating-up around the world as Europe hopes to give China & the United States a run for their money:

Elizabeth Gibney (04 May 2017), "Europe’s billion-euro quantum project takes shape", Nature, Volume: 545, Pages: 16, doi:10.1038/545016a

http://www.nature.com/news/europe-s-billion-euro-quantum-project-takes-shape-1.21925 (http://www.nature.com/news/europe-s-billion-euro-quantum-project-takes-shape-1.21925)

Extract: "As China and the United States threaten to corner the market on quantum technologies, Europe is slowly waking up to the opportunity with investment of its own. A year ago, the European Commission announced that it would create a €1-billion (US$1.1-billion) research effort in the field, and it should start to invite grant applications later this year. But scientists coordinating the project say that they are already concerned because industry partners seem reluctant to invest.

The European flagship will focus on four quantum technologies: communication, computing, sensing and simulation. It will also incorporate basic science. Although Europe produces some of the best research in these fields, other regions file more patents, says Martino Travagnin, who, along with his colleagues at the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre in Ispra, Italy, has analysed patenting in quantum technologies.

China currently dominates in quantum communication, which uses quantum properties of particles to develop shared secret keys for encryption. The country holds the most patents in the field and is already trialling both a quantum-communication satellite and a 2,000-kilometre secure ground-based link. And the United States leads on patents in quantum computing and ultra-sensitive sensors."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 05, 2017, 12:47:54 AM
I get the feeling that some readers of my posts about Technocracy are dissatisfied with the fact that Technocracy, and T-4IR, is/are a(n) oligarchical form of governance.  However, in the modern world in which we live, technocrats/bureaucrats make all kinds of decisions for us ranging from: peer-reviews that tell what is 'consensus science' (including about climate change), to professional judges who tells us what our laws mean, to regulators who tell us what acceptable limits are for a disutility in a product.

The following TED links discuss how science (& this includes Eastern interpretations of science) can address moral values and then how super intelligence AI can produce algorithms that give weight to such moral values (possibly within a future T-4IR form of governance), possibly in a Hegelian double helical dialectic with people using hybrid thinking while connected to a quantum Internet:

The first linked video is entitled: "Sam Harris: Science can answer moral questions":

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8nt3edWLgIg (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8nt3edWLgIg)

&

The second linked video is entitled: "Sam Harris: Can we build AI without losing control over it?":

https://www.ted.com/talks/sam_harris_can_we_build_ai_without_losing_control_over_it#t-855887 (https://www.ted.com/talks/sam_harris_can_we_build_ai_without_losing_control_over_it#t-855887)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 05, 2017, 07:41:42 PM
The linked reference discusses experimental demonstrations that information can be transmitted remotely without the transmission of particles.  This brings the reality of the coming quantum Internet more clearly into focus:

Yuan Cao, Yu-Huai Li, Zhu Cao, Juan Yin, Yu-Ao Chen, Hua-Lei Yin, Teng-Yun Chen, Xiongfeng Ma, Cheng-Zhi Peng, and Jian-Wei Pan (2017), "Direct counterfactual communication via quantum Zeno effect", PNAS 2017 , DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1614560114

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2017/04/19/1614560114 (http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2017/04/19/1614560114)

Abstract: "Intuition from our everyday lives gives rise to the belief that information exchanged between remote parties is carried by physical particles. Surprisingly, in a recent theoretical study [Salih H, Li ZH, Al-Amri M, Zubairy MS (2013) Phys Rev Lett 110:170502], quantum mechanics was found to allow for communication, even without the actual transmission of physical particles. From the viewpoint of communication, this mystery stems from a (nonintuitive) fundamental concept in quantum mechanics—wave-particle duality. All particles can be described fully by wave functions. To determine whether light appears in a channel, one refers to the amplitude of its wave function. However, in counterfactual communication, information is carried by the phase part of the wave function. Using a single-photon source, we experimentally demonstrate the counterfactual communication and successfully transfer a monochrome bitmap from one location to another by using a nested version of the quantum Zeno effect."

See also the associated article entitled: "Researchers achieve direct counterfactual quantum communication"
https://phys.org/news/2017-05-counterfactual-quantum.html (https://phys.org/news/2017-05-counterfactual-quantum.html)

Extract: "The idea came from holography technology. The authors write, "In the 1940s, a new imaging technique—holography—was developed to record not only light intensity but also the phase of light. One may then pose the question: Can the phase of light itself be used for imaging? The answer is yes." In the experiment, the phase of light itself became the carrier of information, and the intensity of the light was irrelevant to the experiment.

The authors note that besides applications in quantum communication, the technique could be used for such activities as imaging ancient artifacts that would be damaged by directly shining light."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 06, 2017, 06:53:13 PM
If you want to get a better feel for what direction information science is taking us, take a look at the list of papers accepted to the Genetic and Evolutionary Computation Conference:

http://gecco-2017.sigevo.org/index.html/Accepted+Papers (http://gecco-2017.sigevo.org/index.html/Accepted+Papers)

Edit: For example see: Friedrich, T., Kötzing, T., Krejca, M. S., Sutton, A. M., The Compact Genetic Algorithm is Efficient under Extreme Gaussian Noise. In: IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation (2017).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 07, 2017, 11:10:11 PM
Hegel pointed out that all '-isms' contain some element of wisdom (thesis), as well as some delusions (antithesis) that set a dialectic into motion resulting in conflict and temporary resolution of that conflict (synthesis) that create a new thesis to continue the dialectic.  In this spirit, I provide the linked Amazon book advertisement entitled: "Technocracy Rising: The Trojan Horse Of Global Transformation Paperback – December 29, 2014 by Patrick M. Wood (Author)", that presents a 'libertarian' viewpoint of a form of globalist Technocracy supposedly arose as an outgrowth of the formation of Trilateral Commission, TC, in 1973 (co-founded by Zbigniew Brzezinski & David Rockefeller).  Under this scenario the TC promoted neoliberialism (both Democratic & Republican), likely contributed to the nature of the EU, and encouraged East Asia to be more active in the world economic market; thus forming a technocratic New World Order, that promoted such global programs as: Sustainable Development, Green Economy, Smart Growth, Smart Grid, etc.

Thus, in dialectic terms, this globalist TC thesis resulted in our current wave of nationalism, as a result of both inept and insensitive technocratic managerialism; that libertarians took as a 'Trojan Horse' to dystopian Scientific Dictatorship ala either Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (1932) and Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell (1948), depending on your personal view of the world.


https://www.amazon.com/Technocracy-Rising-Trojan-Global-Transformation/dp/0986373907 (https://www.amazon.com/Technocracy-Rising-Trojan-Global-Transformation/dp/0986373907)


Extract: "The dark horse of the New World Order is not Communism, Socialism or Fascism. It is Technocracy.

With meticulous detail and an abundance of original research, Patrick M. Wood uses Technocracy Rising to connect the dots of modern globalization in a way that has never been seen before so that the reader can clearly understand the globalization plan, its perpetrators and its intended endgame.

In the heat of the Great Depression during the 1930s, prominent scientists and engineers proposed a utopian energy-based economic system called Technocracy that would be run by those same scientists and engineers instead of elected politicians. Although this radical movement lost momentum by 1940, it regained status when it was conceptually adopted by the elitist Trilateral Commission (co-founded by Zbigniew Brzezinski and David Rockefeller) in 1973 to be become its so-called "New International Economic Order."

In the ensuing 41 years, the modern expression of Technocracy and the New International Economic Order is clearly seen in global programs such as Agenda 21, Sustainable Development, Green Economy, Councils of Governments, Smart Growth, Smart Grid, Total Awareness surveillance initiatives and more.

Wood contends that the only logical outcome of Technocracy is Scientific Dictatorship, as already seen in dystopian literature such as Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (1932) and Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell (1948), both of whom looked straight into the face of Technocracy when it was still in its infancy."

Edit: The attached image emphasizes that many of the issues that Technocracy addressed in January 1933 are very relevant to the issues that T-4IR must address today.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 07, 2017, 11:24:27 PM
As a follow-up to my last post (Reply #239) I provide the linked December 1, 2015 article is entitled: "The Riptide of Technocracy - Can there be a democratic EU?".  This article can be taken as trying to present a more positive spin on the TC version of Technocracy by considering the trials and tribulations of the EU and the article concludes by suggesting an alternate title to Habermas's work: "Democracy, not helplessness, is what moves in the undertow of technocracy."  This suggests that globalistic Technocracy will survive the current nationalist trends by being re-energized by democratic institutional/economic adjustments resulting in a solution that is : "… “heterarchical,” according to which “the higher political level should not be able to overwhelm the lower one.

“Why,” Habermas asks, “shouldn’t his European notions of overcoming national prejudices with the aid of the cunning of economic reason be able to come true?””


http://bostonreview.net/world/jonathan-white-riptide-technocracy (http://bostonreview.net/world/jonathan-white-riptide-technocracy)

Extract: "The culprit is “technocracy.” At its most basic, the term is simply intended to mean government that is weakly democratic, carried out far away from the influence and scrutiny of a European public. The formal properties of governing officials—their non-partisan status, say, or their technical qualifications—matter less than the way decisions are made and the form of authority claimed for them: the privileged capacity of an elite to identify the most efficient means to achieve supposedly incontrovertible ends. For Habermas, technocracy is a style of rule, marked by its unresponsive and unquestioning character, rather than a specific institutional arrangement. The question he takes up is how to intercept this mutated EU and turn its transformation to positive effect.

In these scenes of institutional redesign, Habermas discerns the “self-empowerment of the European executive.” There is no single institution that goes by this name. Among those Habermas denotes are the European Council, where the leaders of EU member-states gather for major decisions, and the non-elected institutions of the European Commission and Central Bank. Sometimes in concert with the International Monetary Fund, these institutions have enjoyed a level of influence over the handling of the Euro crisis unmatched by national legislatures and the European Parliament. Furthermore, by instituting new monitoring regimes to constrain national budgets—ostensibly rule-based but with much room for discretion—they have ensured the longevity of crisis powers beyond the horizon of the financial crisis.

In line with Habermas’s work on deliberation, this critique of European technocracy corresponds to a deeper theory of the conditions under which political power can be democratic.

Habermas’s wager is that these same systemic demands can be channeled into regulatory structures more responsive to social-democratic concerns. By strengthening the powers of Parliament to include the right of legislative initiative, incorporating the European Council into the Council of Ministers, and requiring the Commission to “assume the functions of a government answerable to Council and Parliament in equal measure,” the ostensibly undemocratic moves toward further integration already taken in the last few years may be put to democratic ends.

Beyond the dialectical flair, what recommends this perspective to Habermas is that it preserves cross-border coordination.

Yet Habermas stops short of implying that EU institutions will remake themselves. Deeper democratization requires political intervention: the dialectical conditions may be right, but the opportunity must be seized. The decisive actor in Habermas’s view is the German government: it holds “the keys to the fate of the European Union in its hand.”

Many of Habermas’s critics dwell on the apparent optimism of his calls for a more democratic EU. Streeck, for example, has recently written: “I cannot by any stretch of my imagination see from where—in theory or in historical experience—I am supposed to draw the optimism this requires.”  Though Habermas rejects such skepticism, he acknowledges that national citizens rightfully fear “being exposed to the risk of intrusions and encroachments by an unfamiliar supranational polity.” Thus the problem is how a supranational democracy “can satisfy the stringent requirements for democratic legitimacy without assuming the character of a state.” The solution he proposes is not “hierarchical” but “heterarchical,” according to which “the higher political level should not be able to overwhelm the lower one.” Indeed he is careful to emphasize that his case for supranational democracy should not be construed as aiming after “a European federal state”

The concluding essay of the book turns to the reflections on Europe of the nineteenth-century German poet Heinrich Heine, who offers an arresting vision of a transnational order shaped by differences of political opinion rather than competing territorial interests and identities. “Why,” Habermas asks, “shouldn’t his European notions of overcoming national prejudices with the aid of the cunning of economic reason be able to come true?” Once more there is the suggestion of a dialectic. Just as economic forces continue to drive the further integration of Europe’s states, it is technocrats such as Mario Draghi, the head of the Central Bank, whom Habermas sees as pushing forward the debate on the future of the EU, however one-sided their proposals may be. Perhaps one best captures the book’s optimistic message if one renders its title differently. Democracy, not helplessness, is what moves in the undertow of technocracy."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on May 08, 2017, 12:22:41 AM
Thanks, ASLR. I hadn't read any Habermas for quite a while. Good to see he's still around and contributing to the discussion.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 02:55:02 AM
Thanks, ASLR. I hadn't read any Habermas for quite a while. Good to see he's still around and contributing to the discussion.

wili,

As I like Habermas' recommendation that solutions to our governance problems should largely have a heterarchical structure, I provide the following link to a Wikipedia article entitled: Heterarchy", which includes the following statement:
"The concept of heterarchy was first employed in a modern context by Warren McCulloch in 1945. As Carole L. Crumley has summarised, "[h]e examined alternative cognitive structure(s), the collective organization of which he termed heterarchy. He demonstrated that the human brain, while reasonably orderly was not organized hierarchically. This understanding revolutionized the neural study of the brain and solved major problems in the fields of artificial intelligence and computer design.""

As better understanding heterarchical structures has helped to advance both information science and artificial intelligence, I provide a few images of such structures (the third image emphasizes the mind/body relationship that is fundamental to mindfulness).  Also, I note that heterarchical structures are important in HIOTTOE, in T-4IR and also in the organization of many rapidly growing IT companies in Silicon Valley.

Best,
ASLR

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heterarchy

Extract: "A heterarchy is a system of organization where the elements of the organization are unranked (non-hierarchical) or where they possess the potential to be ranked a number of different ways. Definitions of the term vary among the disciplines: in social and information sciences, heterarchies are networks of elements in which each element shares the same "horizontal" position of power and authority, each playing a theoretically equal role. But in biological taxonomy, the requisite features of heterarchy involve, for example, a species sharing, with a species in a different family, a common ancestor which it does not share with members of its own family. This is theoretically possible under principles of "horizontal gene transfer."
A heterarchy may be parallel to a hierarchy, subsumed to a hierarchy, or it may contain hierarchies; the two kinds of structure are not mutually exclusive. In fact, each level in a hierarchical system is composed of a potentially heterarchical group which contains its constituent elements.

The concept of heterarchy was first employed in a modern context by Warren McCulloch in 1945. As Carole L. Crumley has summarised, "[h]e examined alternative cognitive structure(s), the collective organization of which he termed heterarchy. He demonstrated that the human brain, while reasonably orderly was not organized hierarchically. This understanding revolutionized the neural study of the brain and solved major problems in the fields of artificial intelligence and computer design."

In a group of related items, heterarchy is a state wherein any pair of items is likely to be related in two or more differing ways. Whereas hierarchies sort groups into progressively smaller categories and subcategories, heterarchies divide and unite groups variously, according to multiple concerns that emerge or recede from view according to perspective. Crucially, no one way of dividing a heterarchical system can ever be a totalizing or all-encompassing view of the system, each division is clearly partial, and in many cases, a partial division leads us, as perceivers, to a feeling of contradiction that invites a new way of dividing things. (But of course the next view is just as partial and temporary.) Heterarchy is a name for this state of affairs, and a description of a heterarchy usually requires ambivalent thought... a willingness to ambulate freely between unrelated perspectives.

Numerous observers in the information sciences have argued that heterarchical structure processes more information more effectively than hierarchical design. An example of the potential effectiveness of heterarchy would be the rapid growth of the heterarchical Wikipedia project in comparison with the failed growth of the Nupedia project. Heterarchy increasingly trumps hierarchy as complexity and rate of change increase.

Informational heterarchy can be defined as an organizational form somewhere between hierarchy and network that provides horizontal links that permit different elements of an organization to cooperate whilst individually optimizing different success criteria. In an organizational context the value of heterarchy derives from the way in which it permits the legitimate valuation of multiple skills, types of knowledge or working styles without privileging one over the other. In information science, therefore, heterarchy, responsible autonomy and hierarchy are sometimes combined under the umbrella term Triarchy."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 03:03:45 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Heterarchy: An Idea Finally Ripe for Its Time", which offers insights relevant to T-4IR:

https://www.stratfor.com/weekly/heterarchy-idea-finally-ripe-its-time (https://www.stratfor.com/weekly/heterarchy-idea-finally-ripe-its-time)

Extract: "… As McCulloch explained:

"Circularities in preference instead of indicating inconsistencies, actually demonstrate consistency of a higher order than had been dreamed of in our philosophy. An organism possessed of this nervous system — six neurons — is sufficiently endowed to be unpredictable from any theory founded on a scale of values. It has a heterarchy of values, and is thus internectively too rich to submit to a summum bonum [highest good]."

Now there is a phrase to conjure with: "internectively too rich to submit to a summum bonum." This sounds like the Middle East. Or the geopolitical, global problematique. Or the Republican primaries in the United States. Or the problems of the European Union.
The problem with heterarchy, and the challenge to making it work, is not the lack of hierarchy, but too many competing hierarchies. And that's the reality we live in.
"Heterarchy" is an unwieldy word.

… though, the term recommends itself for the way it mediates the dialectic between hierarchy and anarchy.

Most anarchists are disappointed hierarchists.

From all we can determine, primitive hunter-gatherer bands were heterarchical. Teamwork joining different skills was necessary to bag a woolly bison. But no one leader called for deference to a summum bonum.

You see this mindset at play in the well-worn epithet of the lion as "king of the jungle." Who says that the jungle has to have a king? The jungle is not a political order, however many alpha male gorillas may roam its paths. The jungle is an ecology — an incredibly complex web of metabolisms, relationships and interactions, some of which may be hierarchical. But there is no summum bonum in the jungle.

Still others, such as the stealth leader of the supposedly leaderless Occupy movement, David Graeber, insist that anarchy is the only answer to today's overgrown hierarchies. In retrospect, I think we can see that Occupy's commitment to anarchy robbed it of political efficacy.

When you are miles away from the instruments of government, I have no doubt that a kind of libertarian, damn-the-government anarchism might be preferable to the iron cage of hierarchical bureaucracy and the threat of violence against outlaws. But if you want to live in a world that has airplanes, airports, hospitals and a banking system, you're simply not going to be able to do so without some form of governance. The question is not whether government. The question for mature moderns who bear the legacy of the long march from heterarchical hunter-gatherers to hierarchically organized citizens is: Which form of government will be least onerous and most effective?

Bobbitt develops three scenarios:

"The world of The Meadow is that of a society of states in which the entrepreneurial market-state has become predominant. In this world, success comes to those who nimbly exploit the fast-moving, evanescent opportunities... The world view portrayed in The Park... reflects a society in which the values and attitudes of the managerial market-state have prevailed. Governments play a far larger role... Finally, The Garden describes an approach associated with the mercantile market-state... Unlike the regional groupings fostered by The Park, the states of The Garden have become more and more ethnocentric, and more and more protective of their respective cultures."

As you will not be surprised to hear, these scenarios and their names can be associated with certain geopolitical avatars, namely, North America for the wide open Meadow, Europe for the publicly managed Park, and East Asia for the ethnocentric Garden.

Bobbitt then explores a range of drivers and trends, possible events and challenging decisions prior to the articulation of the three scenarios in which all of these elements play out in different ways. In my humble opinion, the truly remarkable climax of Bobbitt's very long book is the elegant construction of the heterarchy of choices playing out in the global geopolitical dynamic involving the United States, Europe and East Asia.

"Think of The Meadow as 'A,' The Park as 'B,' and The Garden as 'C.' If we rank these approaches with respect to the security decisions taken in each scenario, A is preferred to B, which is preferred to C. That is, peace with some justice (the protection of nonaggressors, for example) is to be preferred to simple peace (bought at the price of sacrificing innocent peoples), which is still preferable to a cataclysm that would destroy the innocent and guilty alike. Or perhaps we get B/A/C — no conflict is preferred to frustrating low-intensity conflict, which is still preferable to a high risk of cataclysm. In any case, we can agree that C (The Garden) presents the worst option for satisfying the world's security needs. But if we do the same sort of exercise with respect to the issues raised by the 'culture' scenarios, preferring genuine pluralism to mere cultural protectionism, and yet preferring the protection of minorities to their marginalization, we get B/C/A. Or at least we get C/B/A, for some will feel that the protection of sanctified ways of life trumps pluralism. In any case, we can agree that A — The Meadow — is an inhospitable place for the serenity, continuity, and community that protect cultures. And if we conduct this same exercise with respect to the scenarios devoted to economic issues, ranking sustainable growth ahead of recovery, which is still preferable to stagnation, we get C/A/B. Or, if growth alone is our objective, we get A/C/B: the insatiable but impressive engine of dynamic, innovative risk taking is preferred to the methods of mercantilist competition. In any case we must concede that regional protectionism — the world created in the Park — is a sure route to high unemployment, slow growth, and the costliness (and uneven diffusion) of new technology."

In short, as some sage once put it, not all good things go together. There are hard choices to be made, and trade-offs to be acknowledged."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 03:09:09 AM
The linked Forbes article is entitled: "Why Hierarchies Must Sign Their Own Death Warrant To Survive", which indicates that most high-growth modern companies are emphasizing Heterarchical management organizational structures; and which presents the Triarchy from information science (see Reply #242):

https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2013/12/02/why-hierarchies-must-sign-their-own-death-warrant-to-survive/#3941db2e4d68 (https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevedenning/2013/12/02/why-hierarchies-must-sign-their-own-death-warrant-to-survive/#3941db2e4d68)

Extract: "The Three Ways of Getting Things Done (2005) by the late Gerard Fairtlough is a little known but important book. It notes that in politics the world has largely abandoned hierarchy for democracy.  In family life, hierarchical patriarchy is no longer acceptable. It asks: when will organizations get with it and abandon the practice of making key decisions based on authority rather than competence? Hierarchy, it says, is not just a bad habit: it’s an addiction. When will our organizations kick the addiction?
The book makes a persuasive case that there are only three ways of getting things done effectively as an organization: hierarchy, heterarchy and responsible autonomy.
•   In a hierarchy, it’s the boss who makes key decisions.
•   In a heterarchy, such as a democracy or a network or a partnership or strategic alliances, decision-making authority is shared,
•   In responsible autonomy, those doing the work decide what to do and how to do it but are accountable for the outcomes.
Hierarchy is still the dominant, and even semi-automatic, mode of decision-making in organizations, when there are often better managerial options available. The alternatives to hierarchy--heterarchy or responsible autonomy-- “are not soft options. Rather, they require people to take on more responsibility and to produce hard-nosed results – better results than hierarchy. We need to kick the bad habit of automatically choosing hierarchy.”
The book explains that “hierarchy is not necessary for discipline, for systematic ways of working, for inspiration or for leadership. The alternative to hierarchy is not chaos or anarchy. Only our powerful addiction to hierarchy, given to us by our genes and by our culture, leads us to believe this.” Heterarchy and responsible autonomy are both non-hierarchical, but they differ in other respects. “Heterarchy involves continuous interactions between individuals and sub-units in an organization as they decide what to do and how to coordinate their actions… Responsible autonomy, if set up properly, means that sub-units are much more self-sufficient and that interaction between them is much less intense.”"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 03:15:02 AM
As I previously mentioned that modern Technocracy is closely associated with the Trilateral Commission, I provide the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Trilateral Commission":

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trilateral_Commission (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trilateral_Commission)

Extract: "The Trilateral Commission is a non-governmental, non-partisan discussion group founded by David Rockefeller in July 1973, to foster closer cooperation among North America, Western Europe, and Japan.

Membership is divided into numbers proportionate to each of the think tank's three regional areas. The North American continent is represented by 120 members (20 Canadian, 13 Mexican and 87 U.S. citizens). The European group has reached its limit of 170 members from almost every country on the continent; the ceilings for individual countries are 20 for Germany, 18 for France, Italy and the United Kingdom, 12 for Spain and 1–6 for the rest. At first, Asia and Oceania were represented only by Japan. However, in 2000 the Japanese group of 85 members expanded itself, becoming the Pacific Asia group, composed of 117 members: 75 Japanese, 11 South Koreans, 7 Australian and New Zealand citizens, and 15 members from the ASEAN nations (Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore and Thailand). The Pacific Asia group also included 9 members from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. Currently, the Trilateral Commission claims "more than 100" Pacific Asian members.
While Trilateral Commission bylaws exclude persons holding public office from membership, the think tank draws its participants from political, business, and academic worlds. The group is chaired by three individuals, one from each of the regions represented. The current chairmen are former U.S. Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Affairs Joseph S. Nye, Jr., former head of the European Central Bank Jean-Claude Trichet and Yasuchika Hasegawa.
From the right
On the right, a number of prominent thinkers and politicians have criticized the Trilateral Commission as encroaching on national sovereignty. In his book With No Apologies, Republican Senator Barry Goldwater lambasted the discussion group by suggesting it was "a skillful, coordinated effort to seize control and consolidate the four centers of power: political, monetary, intellectual, and ecclesiastical... [in] the creation of a worldwide economic power superior to the political governments of the nation-states involved." Right-wing groups such as the John Birch Society and right wing conspiracy theorists such as Alex Jones also support this idea.
Conservative pundit Charles Krauthammer sardonically alluded to the conspiracy theories when he was asked in 2012 who makes up the "Republican establishment", saying, "Karl Rove is the president. We meet every month on the full moon... [at] the Masonic Temple. We have the ritual: Karl brings the incense, I bring the live lamb and the long knife, and we began... with a pledge of allegiance to the Trilateral Commission."
From the left
Social critic and academic Noam Chomsky has described the Trilateral Commission's goals in less-than-glowing terms:
Essentially liberal internationalists from Europe, Japan and the United States, the liberal wing of the intellectual elite. That's where Jimmy Carter's whole government came from. [...] [The Trilateral Commission] was concerned with trying to induce what they called "more moderation in democracy"—turn people back to passivity and obedience so they don't put so many constraints on state power and so on. In particular they were worried about young people. They were concerned about the institutions responsible for the indoctrination of the young (that's their phrase), meaning schools, universities, church and so on—they're not doing their job, [the young are] not being sufficiently indoctrinated. They're too free to pursue their own initiatives and concerns and you've got to control them better."

Also, I provide the linked Wikipedia article is entitled: "European Union", as the TC was formed in 1973 and the EU significantly expanded, and started becoming more technocratic, then:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Union (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/European_Union)

Extract: "After World War II, European integration was seen as an antidote to the extreme nationalism which had devastated the continent.

In 1973, the Communities were enlarged to include Denmark (including Greenland, which later left the Community in 1985, following a dispute over fishing rights), Ireland, and the United Kingdom. Norway had negotiated to join at the same time, but Norwegian voters rejected membership in a referendum. In 1979, the first direct elections to the European Parliament were held.


See also:
http://trilateral.org/file.showdirectory&list=Trialogue-Series (http://trilateral.org/file.showdirectory&list=Trialogue-Series)
&
http://trilateral.org/news.listarchive (http://trilateral.org/news.listarchive)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 03:18:09 AM
The linked Washington Post article is entitled: "Picking on robots won’t deal with job destruction", and it emphasizes that obstructing the coming of the 4th Industrial Revolution is counterproductive, and it is better to learn to manage it better (such as with heterarchy and T-4IR):

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/picking-on-robots-wont-deal-with-job-destruction/2017/03/05/32091f08-004b-11e7-8ebe-6e0dbe4f2bca_story.html?utm_term=.416b5b9e16ab (https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/picking-on-robots-wont-deal-with-job-destruction/2017/03/05/32091f08-004b-11e7-8ebe-6e0dbe4f2bca_story.html?utm_term=.416b5b9e16ab)

Extract: "None of this is to minimize the problem of job destruction and rising inequality (although it is a major paradox that we seem to be seeing unprecedentedly rapid job destruction by machinery while at the same time observing extraordinarily low productivity growth). Rather, it is to suggest that staving off progress is a poor strategy for helping less fortunate workers. In addition to difficulties of definition and collateral costs, there is the further problem that in an open world, taxes on technology are likely to drive production offshore rather than create jobs at home.

There are many better approaches. Governments will, however, have to concern themselves with problems of structural joblessness. They likely will need to take a more explicit role in ensuring full employment than has been the practice in the United States. Among other things, this will mean major reforms of education and retraining systems, consideration of targeted wage subsidies for groups with particularly severe employment problems, major investments in infrastructure and, possibly, direct public employment programs.

This will be a major debate that I suspect will define a large part of the politics of the industrial world over the next decade. Little is certain. But we will do better going forward than backward. That means making America even greater, not great again. And it means embracing rather than rejecting technological progress."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 03:22:02 AM
For those deeply invested in a progressive response to the development of technocratic governance in the EU I provide the linked article from the Center for Security Studies, CSS, entitled: "Finis Europae? Historical Cycles and the Rise of Right Wing Populism":

http://isnblog.ethz.ch/government/finis-europae-historical-cycles-and-the-rise-of-right-wing-populism (http://isnblog.ethz.ch/government/finis-europae-historical-cycles-and-the-rise-of-right-wing-populism)

Extract: "Why has Europe failed to inspire its citizens in a similar way to other ideas such as the nation, socialism or human rights? Here are some answers and some solutions.

In 2002, Jurgen Habermas and Ulrich Beck celebrated the great successes of the European Union: the re-unification of Germany, the expansion to the East, the successful introduction of the Euro. Old enmities had been left behind and former enemies collaborated in peaceful competition creating the most successful economic region in the world. Europe was becoming the model for the future of humanity.

The reality is different today. Europe is a dysfunctional entity that has betrayed its foundational values. Politicians, commentators and mainstream academics were aghast at the victories of Brexit and Trump. ‘Politics has gone mad’ said many. ‘The world is crumbling before our eyes’ intoned the French Ambassador to America.

Yet the rise of right wing populism and euroscepticism was not unpredictable. The economic, political and cultural trends leading to Brexit, Trump and the rise of the xenophobic and nationalist right-wing are similar and well-known. They did not seem to worry the European elites until recently.

My argument is that the current European crisis is the culmination of three overlapping historical cycles, three temporalities which, in a dialectical fashion, both created and are now leading Europe to its decline. The pioneering work of Etienne Balibar on the European Union and its teleologies is crucial in this approach.

The first, and longest, started in the fifteenth century with the Renaissance, the discovery and conquest of the New World and is still with us. It is the cycle of European capitalisation and provincialisation.

The second cycle is the short twentieth century between 1918 and 1989, the century of the European civil war between Germany and the other European powers and, secondly, between capitalism and communism. The first finished with the pacification between Germany and the rest of Europe, the second with the defeat of communism and the end of the cold war.

Finally, the third cycle of the “end of history” started in 1989. It is an attempt to re-establish Western hegemony at a time of rapid decline. The liberalisation of capitalism, the destruction of the social state, the privatisation of public assets and the commons, the deregulation of the markets and the disrespect and marginalisation of democracy have freed market from considerations of social justice. Markets have been freed from correction by social justice.
Economic performance, productivity, competitiveness and the repayment of debts are prioritised over social justice and the needs of people. We are treated and are turned into little entrepreneurs of ourselves and our families. We have to provide for our education, health, old age and care. Rights and entitlements created by the post-war social contract are now destroyed, state institutions and services privatised, governments become collection agencies of international capital against their own citizens.

The unravelling of the social state was facilitated by what became known as the post-democratic condition. Complex social problems require optimal scientific solutions that cannot be put into public deliberation or, even worse, the vote.

Politics must promote broad centre-left and centre-right alliances with technocratic and grand coalition governments. Understandably citizens conclude that elections make no difference and turn away from politics. This derogatory treatment of the plebeians and the business as usual mantra lies equally behind Brexit, Trump and Le Pen.

The passionate intensity of right wing nationalism offers a message the people respond to: the elites are selfish, corrupt, delinquent. Its promulgation that power must return to the people is the great lie of our times. (The two greatest shocks of 2016 came in the states that most fervently had adopted neoliberalism and the politics of the extreme centre.)
But the cunning of history struck again. The victory of the West in the cold war has undermined Europe’s major achievements: prosperity based on solidarity and the pacification of ethnic conflict. Austerity and recession, unemployment and precarious employment, the impoverishment of the middle class and the huge increase in inequality have undermined trust in mainstream politics.

The Commission White Paper shows that the ideological straitjacket of ordoliberalism does not allow the theoretical imagination or the will necessary to move in a radically new direction. The white paper half-heartedly acknowledges the chasm between policies and people. For European orthodoxy, crises lead by stealth to greater integration and the hope is that the same will happen in the present travails.

Yet, the unprecedented rise of the nationalist right wing, to which European policies have generously contributed indicates that this is not a ‘normal’ crisis. We need a different politics in a different Europe, a serious and far going critique of the Union while defending the ideal of Europe. The task is to rebuild Europe from the bottom up as a community of democratic nations and people, as opposed to a one-size-fits-all top-down construct.


Europe has failed to inspire its citizens in a way similar to other great ideas such as the nation, socialism or human rights. The daily experience of the vast majority European peoples is one of political, cultural and emotional attachment to the local, regional or national level.
Many powers and competencies should therefore return from Brussels to national capitals, regions and local authorities as a precondition for survival. Perhaps the idea of a loose confederation of European homelands to replace the failed federal plan should be part of this debate.

It is perhaps the duty of the left with its institutional naivete and youthful audacity to think through these major changes. Such ideas and initiatives can only come from those challenging the tired European establishment."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 08, 2017, 10:07:54 AM
Trinity

1. Hierarchy –Heterarchy - Responsible Autonomy (Triarchy Theory)
2. Deductive Logic – Inductive Logic – Reduced Entropy (Scientific Processes)
3. Faith – Wisdom – Energy (Types of Great Bodhisattas)
4. Sanga – Buddha – Dhamma (Triple Gem)
5. Father – Son – Holy Ghost (Holy Trinity)
6. Holy – Holy – Holy (Seraphim)
7. Atapi – Sampanjano – Satima (Pali Cannon)

http://www.triarchypress.net/triarchy-theory.html (http://www.triarchypress.net/triarchy-theory.html)

Extract: "Triarchy Theory refers to the three fundamental ways of getting things done in organizations: hierarchy, heterarchy and responsible autonomy.

All organizations use a mixture of these three ways, but the proportions can differ widely. At present, hierarchy is usually considered essential for all organizations. Heterarchy and responsible autonomy are often misunderstood or neglected. Here is an outline;

The pecking order is a common feature of animal communities, but there are instances where some animal groups - meerkats for example - have developed interchanging roles for the good of the colony. Even here, however, there are alpha males and females.

Triarchy theory suggests that our "addiction to hierarchy" drains the energy from collaborative projects and sometimes fails to recognise the input of able individuals whose contributions can be overlooked in a formal reporting structure.

We all know of bosses who have taken credit for work accomplished by members of their teams or who have stifled innovative work for reasons of company politics. But it is not only the possibility for this kind of behaviour that limits the effectiveness of hierarchy. A larger problem is the focus it places on a few designated individuals who are expected to make the right decisions on every occasion.

The problem with hierarchy is that it has too often bred authoritarianism, creating fear in some cases and dependence in others. So that 50 years ago, W Edwards Deming was urging organizations to drive out fear (even as others counselled managers to use fear to extract the best from their staff - a process famously likened to the potent "last fart of the ferret"). Even when a hierarchy is relatively benign it can inhibit independent thinking by maintaining habitual relationships, allowing some to settle in comfort zones with few responsibilities:

"In a strictly hierarchical organization, the only learning that takes place is the learning of the individual at the top. Everyone else obeys orders. An organization without learning will only survive in very stable conditions. In practice, of course, the lower ranks actually learn and adapt without being told to do so. But hierarchies tend to learn slowly, especially because a lot of effort goes into preserving the superior status of those at the top, inevitably an anti-learning activity."

Triarchy theory speculates that a spontaneous emergence of hierarchy among groups of people, even in pre-school children, may have something to do with genetic predisposition. This would help to explain why hierarchies are almost taken for granted in our society. But if there is no inevitability about hierarchy what sort of organization could exist in its place? The two alternatives are "heterarchy" and "responsible autonomy".

Heterarchy is divided, supported or dispersed rule where control shifts around depending on the project and the personality, skills, experience and enthusiasm of those who can make things happen. Much of the project work that is becoming common in large technology companies fits this kind of arrangement.

Triarchy theory then points to the kind of responsible autonomy enjoyed by fund managers who tend to be left to themselves if their fund is performing well. Success attracts a larger fund and more clients. Autonomy is provided by the internal policies of the investment institution. Accountability is provided by the performance of the fund.

Heterarchy's battles are those of ideas, fostering the kind of debate that demands greater personal responsibility. There is a mass of evidence to suggest that, in the 21st century, the time is ripe for sustainable change in the ways that organizations get things done. The result, triarchy theory suggests, will be a gradual move away from hierarchy in organizations."

See also:

http://www.triarchypress.net/the-three-ways-of-getting-things-done.html (http://www.triarchypress.net/the-three-ways-of-getting-things-done.html)

&

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Responsible_autonomy (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Responsible_autonomy)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 09, 2017, 05:18:33 PM
As AI uses a combination of hierarchy & heterarchy logic structures, I provide the following link to a 2012 (5-years ago) of how Ray Kurzweil used an understanding of how the brain is structured both hierarchically and heterarchically to rapidly fill-in information gaps in order to recognize patterns.  Such insights can also be applied to institutions like the IPCC, or technocratic governance systems like the EU governance in Brussels, in order to make more responsive & better decisions:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RIkxVci-R4k (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RIkxVci-R4k)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 09, 2017, 08:21:46 PM
When thinking about the adjustments required to institutions to make technocracy more viable, it is worth thinking about the activities of opportunists (whether alt-right hackers, individuals controlling botnets or otherwise), and in this regards, I provide the linked Wikipedia article entitled : "Social engineering (security)".

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_engineering_%28security%29

Extract: "Social engineering, in the context of information security, refers to psychological manipulation of people into performing actions or divulging confidential information. A type of confidence trick for the purpose of information gathering, fraud, or system access, it differs from a traditional "con" in that it is often one of many steps in a more complex fraud scheme.
The term "social engineering" as an act of psychological manipulation is also associated with the social sciences, but its usage has caught on among computer and information security professionals."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 10, 2017, 12:01:39 AM
Per Wikipedia on self-information: "…surprisal is a measure of the information content associated with an event in a probability space or with the value of a discrete random variable. It is expressed in a unit of information, for example bits, nats, or hartleys, depending on the base of the logarithm used in its calculation."  The linked article entitled: "Surprisals, from Excitation to Code", discusses how this concept provide insights for decision making in systems with uncertainty from living organisms to multiple choice exams.  This concept is also useful to AI decision making and the valuation algorithms for T-4IR.


http://www.umsl.edu/~fraundorfp/surprise.html (http://www.umsl.edu/~fraundorfp/surprise.html)

Extract: "Surprisal is defined as s = k ln[1/p] where p is a probability (0 ≤ p ≤ 1) and k is a constant that chooses between various unit conventions. For example surprisal is measured in bits if k is 1/ln2~1.44, and in Joules/Kelvin if k is 1.38×10-23. This latter example may seem weird until it's pointed out that reciprocal temperature is energy's uncertainty slope, so that Kelvins measure the "heat energy added per unit increase in entropy". Thus the general inverse relation p=e-s/k becomes this easy-to-remember relation for s in bits: Probability is 1/2#bits.
...
When probabilities multiply, surprisals add. This often makes them easier to work with, and more managable in size, than probabilities. For example, the number of colors possible on a monitor with 256 choices for each of three colors (red, green and blue) is 256 cubed or 16,777,216. This is more simply expressed by pointing out that 8 bits of surprisal for each of three colors results in "24-bits per pixel" altogether. In the special case when there are Ω equally probable alternatives, the fact that probabilities sum to one i.e. Σpi = Sum[pi, {i,1,Ω}] = 1 means that each probability is 1/Ω, and the surprisal associated with each alternative is s = k ln Ω.
Use of surprisals might also help news-media better convey quantitative information to consumers about chances and risk. For example, suppose you plan an action that will reduce the surprisal of you catching smallpox to 16 bits (like that of throwing 16 heads on the first throw of 16 coins). Still not very likely. But if the surprisal of dying from smallpox is only 2 bits (i.e. probability = 1/22 = 1/4), then you might consider getting a vaccination to protect you as long as the surprisal of harm from the vaccination is greater than that of getting done in by smallpox (16+2=18 bits). In practice the surprisal of harm from the vaccine might be closer to 20 bits. The odds of something bad happening either way are tiny, but this simple calculation would let you take informed responsibility for whichever choice you make.
Entropy or uncertainty in information units may be defined as average surprisal S = Σpisi = k Sum[piln[1/pi], {i,1,Ω}]. The name entropy was first used to describe a useful thermodynamic quantity, whose connection to probabilities has been clarified in only the past half century. The underlying idea is that a system, cut off from you and the world, generally does not spontaneously rearrange its state so that the world outside has a more tightly-specified awareness of that state after the fact than before. That is, isolated system entropies in practice don't decrease with time. Put another way, the best guess about the state of an isolated system in the long run is the particular guess which has the most entropy (average surprisal) consistent with the information that you can still count on. Tracking consequences of this assertion mathematically have a long and successful history, clues to which are provided in these notes on the connection between surprisals and thermal physics. Hence then, for example, knowing the energy associated with each state i gives one a ``best guess'' for the final energy. With macroscopic physical systems e.g. with more than 1020 molecules, the resulting predictions can be quite accurate.
In the special case when all Ω alternatives are equally probable, the entropy becomes S = k ln Ω. This logarithmic function of the number of accessible states Ω (#choices=2#bits) is also commonly used to measure the storage capacity of memory devices, that is the amount of information needed to specify its precise state. For example, you might go to the computer store and be told that "To run this program, you need S = 2 gigabytes of RAM (where one byte equals 8 bits)." In that case you need a memory chip that can assume, and hold for later recall, any one of Ω = 28×2,000,000,000 different states. Similarly the uncertainty before choosing one of four answers on a multiple choice test, as well as the information needed to answer correctly, involves 4choices=22bits. How does this change if the correct response might involve multiple choices instead of only one?

Net surprisal (also known as KL-divergence, cross-entropy, and even entropy-deficit although this could mislead) is defined as Inet = Σpi(soi-si) = k Sum[piln[pi/poi], {i,1,Ω}] ≥ 0, i.e. as average of the "surprisal-difference" between a reference or "ambient" condition with probabilities denoted poi, and the current state. It also measures the information lost in overlooking differences between a system and the model that you apply to it. Net surprisals are useful in quantifying finite deviations from the reference "equilibrium reservoir" or "model" state in many fields including chemistry, ecology, economics and thermal physics. For example, relative to a room temperature ambient the net surprisal of water near the boiling point is greater than that of water at the freezing point. Thus an invention that converts boiling water to ice water reversibly (i.e. no batteries required) at room temperature is possible, albeit still an engineering challenge. Mutual information (now quite popular in the study of DNA-sequence/chain-letter similarities, quantum computers, and complex non-linear systems) is simply the net surprisal associated with two correlated systems, referenced to the uncorrelated state. Saying that an observer's uncertainty (about an isolated sub-system) does not decrease, as in the discussion of entropies above, may also be seen as an assertion that the mutual information between observer and sub-system is unlikely to increase as long as the isolation persists.
The foregoing equations, although devilishly simple, lend themselves to treatment of a bewildering array of simple and complex, classical and quantum-mechanical, systems. In particular, surprisals in the form of ordered energy (or available work) can be converted into surprisals in the form of subsystem correlations. Two very powerful laws which govern such processes are the first and second laws of thermodynamics. We might refer to the engines that perform such conversions as steady state excitations. Correlations with maximal survivability, on the other hand, often find themselves stored as replicable codes. The perspective of steady state excitations (e.g. organisms which control energy flow) is in some literal sense complementary to that of replicable codes (e.g. genes or texts designed to multiply intact and adapt over time), making this conversion process an interesting balance which fails if run to either extreme (i.e. if rates of energy thermalization are too fast or too slow). For example, if you're starving then energy processing is too slow, whereas if your house is on fire then it's probably too fast.
Life is a symbiosis between such excitations (e.g. organisms) and codes, the latter now quite familiar in both molecular (e.g. genetic) and memetic (e.g. word) form. In this sense both genes and memes are as fundamental to life as the organisms with which they associate. A map that illustrates connections between these things (with interactive links under development) is shown below.
The resulting picture (below) of energy flow through steady-state organisms, which thermalize solar energy reversibly with help from molecular codes and memes, may therefore have some interesting quantitative and qualitative uses. This is especially true in light of the great strides that memetic codes have made toward speeding up their own replication in recent decades, e.g. with help from digital hardware and global electronic networks."


Examples of surprisals can be found at:
http://www.umsl.edu/~fraundorfp/egsurpri.html (http://www.umsl.edu/~fraundorfp/egsurpri.html)
Extract: "Thus surprisal differences (like ebits) can help assess the credibility of true-false assertions about the world around. For example, they are a potentially useful element of Bayesian* jurisprudence programs dedicated to development of objective tools for juries to work with in cases when the information they have can (like DNA evidence) be put into quantitative form." See the fourth attached image.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 10, 2017, 10:10:18 AM
As a follow-on to my last post (on surprisal or self-information), the linked Wikipedia article is on the Kullback–Leibler (KL) divergence (see also the associated attached image).  This concept is useful for quantifying the meaning of the phrase: "All models are wrong but some models are useful."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kullback%E2%80%93Leibler_divergence

Extract: "The Kullback–Leibler divergence is a measure of how one probability distribution diverges from a second expected probability distribution. Applications include characterizing the relative (Shannon) entropy in information systems, randomness in continuous time-series, and information gain when comparing statistical models of inference. In contrast to variation of information, it is a distribution-wise asymmetric measure and thus does not qualify as a statistical metric of spread. In the simple case, a Kullback–Leibler divergence of 0 indicates that we can expect similar, if not the same, behavior of two different distributions, while a Kullback–Leibler divergence of 1 indicates that the two distributions behave in such a different manner that the expectation given the first distribution approaches zero. In somewhat simplified terms, it is a measure of surprise, with diverse applications such as applied statistics, fluid mechanics, neuroscience, and machine learning.

In the context of machine learning, the Kullback–Leibler divergence is often called the information gain achieved if P is used instead of Q. By analogy with information theory, it is also called the relative entropy of P with respect to Q. In the context of coding theory, Kullback–Leibler divergence can be constructed as measuring the expected number of extra bits required to code samples from P using a code optimized for Q rather than the code optimized for P.

In quantum information science the minimum of over all separable states Q can also be used as a measure of entanglement in the state P."

Caption for the attached image: "Illustration of the Kullback–Leibler (KL) divergence for two normal Gaussian distributions. Note the typical asymmetry for the Kullback–Leibler divergence is clearly visible."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 10, 2017, 10:19:45 AM
As a follow-on to my Reply #250:

The linked article is entitled: “What if AI Could Lie?”  AI mimics humans and as we now live in a world dominated by alt-right fake news, we should need to watch out for deceptive humans, deceptive machines and soon cyborgs:

https://disruptionhub.com/what-if-ai-could-lie/

Extract: “Artificial Intelligence is constantly fed information from countless channels. If AI can understand deception, then all of these channels would be disrupted. In some ways, this is good news. In order to achieve optimal function, AI needs to handle missing or hidden data. It’s also useful for it to understand lying – for example, AI can pick up on fake news using an algorithm that mimics traditional journalism techniques. As of this month, it’s even used on U.S. borders as an unbiased lie detector. On the other hand, adding the ability to hide or twist data to super-intelligent systems is a recipe for disaster. AI systems have already worked out how to lie to each other, which creates competition rather than collaboration. Imagine what would happen if AI-enabled robots decided to keep information to themselves – in other words, refusing to co-operate with humans? The relationship between humans and technology would be fundamentally altered. Either way, if Artificial Intelligence can learn to be dishonest, it can be programmed to lie for malicious ends. Cyber criminals could hack into machine learning systems and play havoc with vital info, using rogue AI as blackmail or to steal data. It’s even been argued that AI is deceptive by nature because it mimics and imitates.

It’s clear that AI research isn’t going to stop just because Artificial Intelligence could be dangerous. That means that the only thing developers and investors can do is work together to find ways to contain or prevent deceptive AI. This is supposedly what Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, IBM and now Apple are doing with their partnership on AI. . . but if it was difficult to trust AI before, it definitely will be now that machine learning systems can bluff as well as, and better than, humans. Ultimately, if data-saturated AI can lie to us about our own information (and share it within neural networks that we can’t access) then we have a serious problem.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 10, 2017, 06:05:07 PM
The linked article is entitled: "Lessons from the Anti-Globalists".  In any workable version of T-4IR, the elite must be made to feel the pain/consequences of their decisions, much as the mind (heterachically) feels the pain of the body in an unbreakable mind/body relationship forged by natural selection.

https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/macron-fight-against-populism-by-joseph-e--stiglitz-2017-05 (https://www.project-syndicate.org/commentary/macron-fight-against-populism-by-joseph-e--stiglitz-2017-05)

Extract: "But it would be a mistake to conclude that discontent with the global economy – at least how it treats large numbers of those in (or formerly in) the middle class – has crested. If the developed liberal democracies maintain status quo policies, displaced workers will continue to be alienated. Many will feel that at least Trump, Le Pen, and their ilk profess to feel their pain. The idea that voters will turn against protectionism and populism of their own accord may be no more than cosmopolitan wishful thinking.

Advocates of liberal market economies need to grasp that many reforms and technological advances may leave some groups – possibly large groups – worse off. In principle, these changes increase economic efficiency, enabling the winners to compensate the losers. But if the losers remain worse off, why should they support globalization and pro-market policies? Indeed, it is in their self-interest to turn to politicians who oppose these changes.

So the lesson should be obvious: In the absence of progressive policies, including strong social-welfare programs, job retraining, and other forms of assistance for individuals and communities left behind by globalization, Trumpian politicians may become a permanent feature of the landscape.

We must not forget that before the dawn of the Enlightenment, with its embrace of science and freedom, incomes and living standards were stagnant for centuries. But Trump, Le Pen, and the other populists represent the antithesis of Enlightenment values. Without blushing, Trump cites “alternative facts,” denies the scientific method, and proposes massive budget cuts for public research, including on climate change, which he believes is a hoax.

The lesson of all of this is something that Scandinavian countries learned long ago. The region’s small countries understood that openness was the key to rapid economic growth and prosperity. But if they were to remain open and democratic, their citizens had to be convinced that significant segments of society would not be left behind.

The welfare state thus became integral to the success of the Scandinavian countries. They understood that the only sustainable prosperity is shared prosperity. It is a lesson that the US and the rest of Europe must now learn."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 11, 2017, 06:40:49 PM
While acknowledging that soldiers may need to protect their countries from hostile attacks, the Buddha also challenged such soldiers to try to find a better way.  In this regards, T-4IR will need to challenge nationalism to try to find a better way to protect the innocent while minimizing violence.  As this brings to mind both Camelot and the mental discipline of martial arts (per my Reply #220 the Buddha's teachings can be associated with Zen that can be associate with Taoist teachings that can be associated with many Eastern martial arts), I provide the attached images.

The first image from the movie Kung Fu Panda (with a Yin-Yang symbol) that teaches nationalists that "the more you take the less you have".

The second image conveys to nationalists that in a dynamic situation adaptability contributes to success.

The third image conveys that a heterarchical organizational structure can improve the common good.

The fourth image conveys that in a world of uncertainty one needs to develop an adversarial methodology to dispel illusions and to revile evidence based truth.

In this regards, the following series of links address a new development in machine learning associated with Wasserstein Generative Adversarial Networks (WGAN):

Martin Arjovsky, Soumith Chintala, and Leon Bottou (March 2017), "Wasserstein GAN"

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1701.07875.pdf (https://arxiv.org/pdf/1701.07875.pdf)
https://arxiv.org/abs/1701.07875 (https://arxiv.org/abs/1701.07875)

Abstract: "We introduce a new algorithm named WGAN, an alternative to traditional GAN training. In this new model, we show that we can improve the stability of learning, get rid of problems like mode collapse, and provide meaningful learning curves useful for debugging and hyperparameter searches. Furthermore, we show that the corresponding optimization problem is sound, and provide extensive theoretical work highlighting the deep connections to other distances between distributions."

See also the following linked blog articles discussing the new WGAN algorithm:

https://datawarrior.wordpress.com/2017/03/30/on-wasserstein-gan/ (https://datawarrior.wordpress.com/2017/03/30/on-wasserstein-gan/)

&
https://vincentherrmann.github.io/blog/wasserstein/ (https://vincentherrmann.github.io/blog/wasserstein/)

&

http://www.alexirpan.com/2017/02/22/wasserstein-gan.html (http://www.alexirpan.com/2017/02/22/wasserstein-gan.html)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 11, 2017, 06:53:34 PM
As a follow-on to my last post I provide the attached images that provide more insights on how heterarchical interactions can be used to improve the human condition (including with regard to T-4IR):

The first image shows how the 'Wheel of Dhamma' assumes a heterarchical configuration.

The second image indicates how one of the Buddha's many teachings can heterarchically reduce social stress by being mindful and knowing what battles to fight and which to avoid.

The third image shows a Bruce Lee quote expressing the Taoist idea that a soft (water) approach can wear down hard resistance

The fourth image expresses how living less egotistically results in greater activity, happiness and gratitude.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 12, 2017, 05:09:39 PM
The linked open access article confirms the structural heterogeneity in the RNA polymerase II C-terminal domain.  As this biological process underpins the expression of life, we would be wise to incorporate organizational heterogeneity in our institutional and governance organizations.


https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15231 (https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15231)

doi:10.1038/ncomms15231
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: magnamentis on May 12, 2017, 06:51:56 PM
https://www.facebook.com/iLove.Agapo/videos/1681128192192068/ (https://www.facebook.com/iLove.Agapo/videos/1681128192192068/)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 14, 2017, 06:47:44 PM
The two linked videos provide insight as to why AI (or more accurately AGI) is currently progressing faster than most people understand; and they raise the important question of who will control AGI in the future:

The first linked video is entitled: "Google's Great AI Awakening: We didn't even know we hired the best AI scientists in Google".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynZ8_CFRDgE (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynZ8_CFRDgE)

Extract: "Feb 2017, Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Alphabet Inc. Artificial Intelligence sits at the epicenter of mankind’s quest for technological advancements. This poses some timely questions: how is this already being used to protect people today, and what can we expect in years to come? More broadly, how will it transform security and the way we use technology? AI is one of today’s most talked about—and misunderstood—innovations."

&

The second linked video is entitled: "A.I. is Progressing Faster Than You Think".

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQO2PcEW9BY (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQO2PcEW9BY)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 17, 2017, 10:22:41 PM
The linked article entitled" "The 12 biggest announcements from Google I/O 2017", discusses how machine learning is dominating the majority of Google's new deveolpments:

http://bgr.com/2017/05/17/google-io-2017-top-announcements-android-o/ (http://bgr.com/2017/05/17/google-io-2017-top-announcements-android-o/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 29, 2017, 10:37:48 PM
While the linked Carnegie Europe article entitled: "Judy Asks: Is the Crisis of the Liberal Order Exaggerated?", offers a lot of insightful European opinions on the current turmoil of the "liberal" (rules-based) world order, I have selected only two opinions on this question; which emphasize the roles of both:

(a) How accelerating information technology (4th Industrial Revolution) can make decision making more transparent and

(b) How the rules/institutions that "liberal" elites develop must be adjusted to reflect the truly universal values of free-will.

http://carnegieeurope.eu/strategiceurope/68041 (http://carnegieeurope.eu/strategiceurope/68041)

Extract: "Bahadır KaleağasıChief executive officer of the Turkish Industry and Business Association (TÜSİAD) and president of the Bosphorus Institute

This is not simply a crisis of liberal democracy. The world is going through a very risky phase in the transition toward what could be described as democracy 4.0: a better-functioning political system based on instant and direct access by citizens to fact checking, impact analyses, and policymaking. As the Fourth Industrial Revolution begins to take hold around the planet, processes of societal change and democracy are going through stages of fluctuation as was the case in every other industrial revolution.

Industry 4.0 is quickly being uploaded into citizens’ daily lives, but there is an algorithmic problem with coding a modern democracy 4.0. The current evolution has several adverse dimensions as well as beneficial ones. On the one hand, innovations like quantum computing, artificial intelligence, and the Internet of things have the potential to lead to more transparency, direct democracy, and public scrutiny. On the other, liberal democracy’s turbulent evolution may eventually result in authoritarian manipulation of communication in the digital public sphere. Maybe a technology inspired by the blockchain that makes financial transactions more transparent through decentralized trust and distributed consensus can be adapted to the flow of information between public authorities and citizens.

&
Mikhail MinakovAssociate professor in the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at the University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy

No, it isn’t exaggerated.

Currently, the key institutions responsible for the functioning and development of the liberal order can only react to the snowball of challenges they face, not anticipate them. These institutions respond properly only to immediate risks and fail to avert medium- to long-term problems. This strategic blindness of liberal centers of power must be cured.

What makes this crisis of liberal globalism exceptional is the profound shift in the cultural order. Recent elections and referenda in the EU and United States show that enemies of liberal universalism are winning the trust of Western societies. Isolationism, obscurantism, and ultraconservatism are taking over Western capitals.

Universalism provided the liberal order with legitimacy. After the fall of the Soviet Union and in the absence of a disciplining enemy, Western elites betrayed their adherence to universalism and turned instead to more egoistic practices. As a result, illiberal conservatism offers Western societies alternative solutions that people find more convincing. With the fall of liberalism in the West, the liberal order has no future in other regions.

Liberalism is losing the competition for citizens’ hearts in the West. But it still can win their minds and consciences. Liberals should return to taking universal values seriously and put them at the core of new global agenda."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 03, 2017, 12:16:22 AM
The linked article is entitled: "Researchers Have Created an AI That Could Read and React to Emotions"; and it indicates that we already have AI that can read pain in a sheep's face, and we are on the road to having AI that can read emotions on a human face:

https://futurism.com/researchers-have-created-an-ai-that-could-read-and-react-to-emotions/

Brief: "University of Cambridge researchers have developed an AI algorithm that can assess how much pain a sheep is in by reading its facial expressions. This system can facilitate the early detection of painful conditions in livestock, and eventually, it could be used as the basis for AIs that read emotions on human faces."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 04, 2017, 07:39:18 PM
The linked video is entitled: “Quantum Computer – Documentary”, and it provides background information to those who are interested in a recent tutorial on this topic:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxrC0NxpdoM (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FxrC0NxpdoM)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 16, 2017, 11:32:29 PM
AI can develop with more alacrity by studying the human mind/brain as discussed in the linked 2017 conference information:

"Science of Intelligence: Computational Principles of Natural and Artificial Intelligence"

https://cbmm.mit.edu/knowledge-transfer/workshops-conferences-symposia/science-intelligence-computational-principles

See also:
"Information-Processing Psychology, Artificial Intelligence, and the Cognitive Systems Paradigm"

&

"Towards a computational approach to behavior"
https://cbmm.mit.edu/sites/default/files/documents/Perona_AAAI17_SoI.pdf
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 17, 2017, 07:40:16 PM
The linked reference indicates that machine learning is helping scientists to understand multi-body quantum entanglement.

Dong-Ling Deng, Xiaopeng Li, and S. Das Sarma (2017), "Quantum Entanglement in Neural Network State", Phys. Rev. X 7, 021021, DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevX.7.021021

https://journals.aps.org/prx/abstract/10.1103/PhysRevX.7.021021

Abstract: "Machine learning, one of today’s most rapidly growing interdisciplinary fields, promises an unprecedented perspective for solving intricate quantum many-body problems. Understanding the physical aspects of the representative artificial neural-network states has recently become highly desirable in the applications of machine-learning techniques to quantum many-body physics. In this paper, we explore the data structures that encode the physical features in the network states by studying the quantum entanglement properties, with a focus on the restricted-Boltzmann-machine (RBM) architecture. We prove that the entanglement entropy of all short-range RBM states satisfies an area law for arbitrary dimensions and bipartition geometry. For long-range RBM states, we show by using an exact construction that such states could exhibit volume-law entanglement, implying a notable capability of RBM in representing quantum states with massive entanglement. Strikingly, the neural-network representation for these states is remarkably efficient, in the sense that the number of nonzero parameters scales only linearly with the system size. We further examine the entanglement properties of generic RBM states by randomly sampling the weight parameters of the RBM. We find that their averaged entanglement entropy obeys volume-law scaling, and the meantime strongly deviates from the Page entropy of the completely random pure states. We show that their entanglement spectrum has no universal part associated with random matrix theory and bears a Poisson-type level statistics. Using reinforcement learning, we demonstrate that RBM is capable of finding the ground state (with power-law entanglement) of a model Hamiltonian with a long-range interaction. In addition, we show, through a concrete example of the one-dimensional symmetry-protected topological cluster states, that the RBM representation may also be used as a tool to analytically compute the entanglement spectrum. Our results uncover the unparalleled power of artificial neural networks in representing quantum many-body states regardless of how much entanglement they possess, which paves a novel way to bridge computer-science-based machine-learning techniques to outstanding quantum condensed-matter physics problems."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 18, 2017, 06:55:07 PM
Several of my past posts have discussed the evolution of human emotions and how those emotions assist to deal with "wick problems" by quickly assessing a complex situation and creating a frame of mind that serves as a priori for Bayesian analysis to develop a posterior as a closer approximation of the truth.  Also, previously I have noted that AI will increasingly interpret such facial expressions in order to be assess what humans are thinking.  In this regards, I provide the linked reference and associated linked articles discussing new research that helps to better interpret what the mind is thinking bases on what the eyes are expressing.

Daniel H. Lee, Adam K. Anderson. Reading What the Mind Thinks From How the Eye Sees. Psychological Science, 2017; 28 (4): 494 DOI: 10.1177/0956797616687364

http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0956797616687364 (http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0956797616687364)

Abstract: "Human eyes convey a remarkable variety of complex social and emotional information. However, it is unknown which physical eye features convey mental states and how that came about. In the current experiments, we tested the hypothesis that the receiver’s perception of mental states is grounded in expressive eye appearance that serves an optical function for the sender. Specifically, opposing features of eye widening versus eye narrowing that regulate sensitivity versus discrimination not only conveyed their associated basic emotions (e.g., fear vs. disgust, respectively) but also conveyed opposing clusters of complex mental states that communicate sensitivity versus discrimination (e.g., awe vs. suspicion). This sensitivity-discrimination dimension accounted for the majority of variance in perceived mental states (61.7%). Further, these eye features remained diagnostic of these complex mental states even in the context of competing information from the lower face. These results demonstrate that how humans read complex mental states may be derived from a basic optical principle of how people see."

See also:
"New Research Analyzes Evolution of Facial Expressions"

https://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2017/05/17/new-research-analyzes-evolution-of-facial-expressions/ (https://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2017/05/17/new-research-analyzes-evolution-of-facial-expressions/)

Extract: "You can tell an awful lot about someone just by looking at his or her eyes — even if the person is a total stranger. How humans are able to so quickly analyze expressions is an ongoing topic of interest for scientists. New research from Cornell University looked specifically at how the eyes developed for sight — but are now also used for insight.

“What our work is beginning to unravel,” wrote Anderson, “are the details of what Darwin theorized: why certain expressions look the way they do, how that helps the person perceive the world, and how others use those expressions to read our innermost emotions and intentions.”"

&

"Eye expressions offer a glimpse into the evolution of emotion"
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170417182822.htm (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170417182822.htm)

Extract: "New research reveals why the eyes offer a window into the soul. According to the study, people interpret a person's emotions by analyzing the expression in their eyes -- a process that began as a universal reaction to environmental stimuli and evolved to communicate our deepest emotions."

I conclude by noting that Darwin theorized that human facial expressions have been a major driving force in accelerating human evolution via cultural/social interaction with other humans (and socially close animals like dogs & cats).  Thus as we approach the technological singularity, it is critical that we all better understand the preconditioned nature of our emotions and how AI will first take advantage of insights of millions of years of human evolution to better tackle "wicked problems" and then will transcend human insight.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 18, 2017, 07:00:01 PM
As a follow-on to my last post, the linked reference discusses how deep machine learning is helping to better understand the origin of, and to utilize, facial expressions:

Ran Breuer & Ron Kimmel (10 May 2017), "A Deep Learning Perspective on the Origin of Facial Expressions", arXiv:1705.01842v2 [
cs.CV]

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1705.01842.pdf

Abstract: "Facial expressions play a significant role in human communication and behavior. Psychologists have long studied the relationship between facial expressions and emotions. Paul Ekman et al., devised the Facial Action Coding System (FACS) to taxonomize human facial expressions and model their behavior. The ability to recognize facial expressions automatically, enables novel applications in fields like human computer interaction, social gaming, and psychological research. There has been a tremendously active research in this field, with several recent papers utilizing convolutional neural networks (CNN) for feature extraction and inference. In this paper, we employ CNN understanding methods to study the relation between the features these computational networks are using, the FACS and Action Units (AU). We verify our findings on the Extended Cohn-Kanade (CK+), NovaEmotions and FER2013 datasets. We apply these models to various tasks and tests using transfer learning, including cross-dataset validation and cross-task performance. Finally, we exploit the nature of the FER based CNN models for the detection of micro-expressions and achieve state-of-the-art accuracy using a simple long-short-term-memory (LSTM) recurrent neural network (RNN)."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on June 22, 2017, 11:36:53 AM
Game theory has significant implications to society and to adapting to coming changes, and the linked reference discusses how quantum game theory can be combined with Nash-equilibrium theory and can used to establish fair gaming conditions:

Pei Zhang et. al. (2017), "Quantum gambling based on Nash-equilibrium",npj Quantum Information 3, Article number: 24, doi:10.1038/s41534-017-0021-7

http://www.nature.com/articles/s41534-017-0021-7 (http://www.nature.com/articles/s41534-017-0021-7)

Extract: "The problem of establishing a fair bet between spatially separated gambler and casino can only be solved in the classical regime by relying on a trusted third party. By combining Nash-equilibrium theory with quantum game theory, we show that a secure, remote, two-party game can be played using a quantum gambling machine which has no classical counterpart. Specifically, by modifying the Nash-equilibrium point we can construct games with arbitrary amount of bias, including a game that is demonstrably fair to both parties. We also report a proof-of-principle experimental demonstration using linear optics."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 01, 2017, 11:43:07 PM
While I have previously mentioned that Charles Darwin emphasized human's propensity for cooperation and empathy; however, what is new to me in the following reference Marean (2015) is that homo sapiens sapiens conflict with archaic homo sapiens over resources in South Africa contributed directly to our propensity to cooperate, and that this cooperative nature lead directly to the extinction of all archaic human groups and great numbers of megafauna:

Curtis W. Marean (2015), "The Most Invasive Species of All", Sci. Am., Vol. 313, Issue 2.

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-homo-sapiens-became-the-ultimate-invasive-species/ (http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-homo-sapiens-became-the-ultimate-invasive-species/)

In Brief: "Of all the human species that have lived on the earth, only Homo sapiens managed to colonize the entire globe.  Scientists have long puzzled over how our species alone managed to disperse so far and wide. 
A new hypothesis holds that two innovations unique to H. sapiens primed it for world domination: a genetically determined propensity for cooperation with unrelated individuals and advanced projectile weapons."

Extract: "Sometime after 70,000 years ago our species, Homo sapiens, left Africa to begin its inexorable spread across the globe. Other human species had established themselves in Europe and Asia, but only our H. sapiens ancestors ultimately managed to push out into all the major continents and many island chains. Theirs was no ordinary dispersal. Everywhere H. sapiens went, massive ecological changes followed. The archaic humans they encountered went extinct, as did vast numbers of animal species. It was, without a doubt, the most consequential migration event in the history of our planet."

When thinking about our future adaption to the anthropocene, I think that it is helpful to consider how humanity's past interaction with climate change help to make us what we are today.  In that regard, the linked video provides numerous examples of how climatic fluctuations over the past 150,000 to 200,000 years have shaped modern homo sapiens sapiens:

Title: "Evolution Of Modern Humans Documentary"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkX-hLiU_r8 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkX-hLiU_r8)

Edit: The attached image shows many of the climatic fluctuations mentioned in the video
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 02, 2017, 05:24:10 PM
As a follow-on to my last post, I note that the two linked references indicate two major bottlenecks in the Y chromosome diversity at roughly 50 kya and 10 kya.  I suspect that the bottleneck circ 50 kya is more related to our adaptability to climate fluctuations while the bottleneck 10 kya is evidence supporting an early date for the anthropocene as it seems to be related to human culture giving certain males advantages over other males; which have lead directly to our current paternal domination of mother nature and our coming climate crisis.

Kivisild T, (2017), “The study of human Y chromosome variation through ancient DNA”, Hum Genet.; 136(5):529-546,  doi: 10.1007/s00439-017-1773-z.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28260210 (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28260210)

Extract: “High throughput sequencing methods have completely transformed the study of human Y chromosome variation by offering a genome-scale view on genetic variation retrieved from ancient human remains in context of a growing number of high coverage whole Y chromosome sequence data from living populations from across the world. The ancient Y chromosome sequences are providing us the first exciting glimpses into the past variation of male-specific compartment of the genome and the opportunity to evaluate models based on previously made inferences from patterns of genetic variation in living populations. Analyses of the ancient Y chromosome sequences are challenging not only because of issues generally related to ancient DNA work, such as DNA damage-induced mutations and low content of endogenous DNA in most human remains, but also because of specific properties of the Y chromosome, such as its highly repetitive nature and high homology with the X chromosome. Shotgun sequencing of uniquely mapping regions of the Y chromosomes to sufficiently high coverage is still challenging and costly in poorly preserved samples. To increase the coverage of specific target SNPs capture-based methods have been developed and used in recent years to generate Y chromosome sequence data from hundreds of prehistoric skeletal remains. Besides the prospects of testing directly as how much genetic change in a given time period has accompanied changes in material culture the sequencing of ancient Y chromosomes allows us also to better understand the rate at which mutations accumulate and get fixed over time. This review considers genome-scale evidence on ancient Y chromosome diversity that has recently started to accumulate in geographic areas favourable to DNA preservation. More specifically the review focuses on examples of regional continuity and change of the Y chromosome haplogroups in North Eurasia and in the New World.”

&

Monika Karmin, et. al. (2015), “A recent bottleneck of Y chromosome diversity coincides with a global change in culture”, Genome Res; 25(4): 459–466, doi:  10.1101/gr.186684.114

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4381518/ (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4381518/)

Abstract: “It is commonly thought that human genetic diversity in non-African populations was shaped primarily by an out-of-Africa dispersal 50–100 thousand yr ago (kya). Here, we present a study of 456 geographically diverse high-coverage Y chromosome sequences, including 299 newly reported samples. Applying ancient DNA calibration, we date the Y-chromosomal most recent common ancestor (MRCA) in Africa at 254 (95% CI 192–307) kya and detect a cluster of major non-African founder haplogroups in a narrow time interval at 47–52 kya, consistent with a rapid initial colonization model of Eurasia and Oceania after the out-of-Africa bottleneck. In contrast to demographic reconstructions based on mtDNA, we infer a second strong bottleneck in Y-chromosome lineages dating to the last 10 ky. We hypothesize that this bottleneck is caused by cultural changes affecting variance of reproductive success among males.”

Extract: "we date the Y-chromosomal most recent common ancestor (MRCA) in Africa at 254 (95% CI 192–307) kya and detect a cluster of major non-African founder haplogroups in a narrow time interval at 47–52 kya, consistent with a rapid initial colonization model of Eurasia and Oceania after the out-of-Africa bottleneck. In contrast to demographic reconstructions based on mtDNA, we infer a second strong bottleneck in Y-chromosome lineages dating to the last 10 ky. We hypothesize that this bottleneck is caused by cultural changes affecting variance of reproductive success among males."



See also the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Y-chromosomal Adam"


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y-chromosomal_Adam (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Y-chromosomal_Adam)


Extract: "In human genetics, the Y-chromosomal most recent common ancestor (Y-MRCA, informally known as Y-chromosomal Adam) is the most recent common ancestor (MRCA) from whom all currently living males are descended patrilineally. The term Y-MRCA reflects the fact that the Y chromosomes of all currently living males are directly derived from the Y chromosome of this remote ancestor. The analogous concept of the matrilineal most recent common ancestor is known as "Mitochondrial Eve" (mt-MRCA, named for the matrilineal transmission of mtDNA), the most recent woman from whom all living humans are descended matrilineally."

Edit, see the three associated images.  The third image supports the concept of sub-bottlenecks of the Y-chromosome diversity associated with the Indo-European migration:

Caption for first image: "Figure 2. Cumulative Bayesian skyline plots of Y chromosome and mtDNA diversity by world regions. The red dashed lines highlight the horizons of 10 kya and 50 kya."

Caption for second image: "Fig 4 Major sub-clades of Y chromosome haplogroup C in ancient and present-day populations. The structure of the major sub-clades is drawn in proportion to their coalescent time (the tip of each triangle) estimated from high coverage genomes of present-day populations (Bergstrom et al. 2016; Karmin et al. 2015; Poznik et al. 2016; Scozzari et al. 2012). The phylogenetic mapping of ancient Y chromosomes (Gamba et al. 2014; Mathieson et al. 2015; Olalde et al. 2014; Seguin-Orlando et al. 2014) is shown with red symbols. Haplogroup names are shown in brown font and haplogroup-defining SNP-marker names in grey font next to relevant branches. The key areas of the present-day spread of the haplogroups are indicated with colour and white text inside the triangles. PNG Papua New Guinea"

Caption for third image: "Fig. 6  Major sub-clades of Y chromosome haplogroups I and J in ancient and present-day populations. The structure of the major extant sub-clades of haplogroups I and J is shown by triangles the tips of which are drawn in proportion to time according to coalescent time estimates from high coverage genomes of present-day populations (Hallast et al. ; Karmin et al. ; Poznik et al. ) http://isogg.org/tree/, (http://isogg.org/tree/,) https://www.yfull.com/ (https://www.yfull.com/)). The colour of each triangle reflects the main geographic areas of its spread according to the map shown in the middle of the plot. The phylogenetic affiliations of ancient Y chromosomes (Allentoft et al. ; Gamba et al. ; Gunther et al. ; Haak et al. ; Hofmanova et al. ; Jones et al. ; Lazaridis et al. ; Mathieson et al. ; Skoglund et al. ) are shown with red symbols. Haplogroup-defining marker names are shown in grey font next to relevant branches"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 02, 2017, 08:20:50 PM
As a follow-on to my last post that indicated a Y chromosome bottleneck in the regions impacted by the Indo-European migrations, I provide the following linked information:

The linked video is entitled: “Genetics, Migrations and Language Dispersals”, and indicates that in addition to other factors (like warfare, lactose tolerance, horses, etc), the plague contributed to the domination of the Corded Ware Culture on Europe.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKn05BbEMcs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wKn05BbEMcs)

Edit: The four attached images are from the video.

&

The linked Wikipedia article is entitled: “Indo-European migrations”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-European_migrations (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indo-European_migrations)


Extract: “The Indo-European languages and cultures spread in various stages. Early migrations from c. 4200–3000 BCE brought archaic proto-Indo-European into the lower Danube valley, Anatolia,  and the Altai region. Pre-Celtic and pre-Italic probably spread into Europe after new migrations into the Danube Valley, while pre-Germanic and pre-Balto-Slavic developed east of the Carpathian mountains, at present-day Ukraine, moving north and spreading with the Corded Ware culture in Middle Europe (third millennium BCE).”

&

The linked Wikipedia article is entitled: “Kurgan hypothesis”.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kurgan_hypothesis (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kurgan_hypothesis)

“Gimbutas believed that the expansions of the Kurgan culture were a series of essentially hostile, military incursions where a new warrior culture imposed itself on the peaceful, matriarchalcultures of "Old Europe" and replacing it with a patriarchal warrior society, a process visible in the appearance of fortified settlements and hillforts and the graves of warrior-chieftains:

The process of Indo-Europeanization was a cultural, not a physical, transformation. It must be understood as a military victory in terms of successfully imposing a new administrative system, language, and religion upon the indigenous groups.
In her later life, Gimbutas increasingly emphasized the violent nature of this transition from the Mediterranean cult of the Mother Goddess to a patriarchal society and the worship of the warlike Thunderer (Zeus, Dyaus), to a point of essentially formulating a feminist archaeology.

Many scholars who accept the general scenario of Indo-European migrations maintain that the transition was probably much more gradual and peaceful than was suggested by Gimbutas. The migrations were certainly not a sudden, concerted military operation but the expansion of disconnected tribes and cultures, which spanned many generations. To what degree the indigenous cultures were peacefully amalgamated or violently displaced remains a matter of controversy among supporters of the Kurgan hypothesis. J. P. Mallory (in 1989) accepted the Kurgan hypothesis as the de facto standard theory of Indo-European origins, but he recognized valid criticism of Gimbutas's radical scenario of military invasion:

One might at first imagine that the economy of argument involved with the Kurgan solution should oblige us to accept it outright. But critics do exist and their objections can be summarized quite simply – almost all of the arguments for invasion and cultural transformations are far better explained without reference to Kurgan expansions, and most of the evidence so far presented is either totally contradicted by other evidence or is the result of gross misinterpretation of the cultural history of Eastern, Central, and Northern Europe.”

&

The linked Wikipedia article is entitled: “Corded Ware Culture”.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corded_Ware_culture (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corded_Ware_culture)

Extract: “The Corded Ware culture (German: Schnurkeramik; French: céramique cordée; Dutch: touwbekercultuur) comprises a broad Indo-Europeanarchaeological horizon of Europe between c. 2900 BC – circa 2350 BC, thus from the late Neolithic, through the Copper Age, and ending in the early Bronze Age. Corded Ware culture encompassed a vast area, from the Rhine on the west to the  in the east, occupying parts of Northern Europe, Central Europe and Eastern Europe.

The Corded Ware was genetically strongly related to the Yamnaya culture, suggesting that the Corded Ware culture originated from migrations from the Eurasiatic steppes. The Corded Ware culture may have disseminated the Proto-Germanic and Proto-Balto-Slavic Indo-European languages. The Corded Ware Culture also shows genetic affinity with the later Sintashta culture, where the proto-Indo-Iranian language originated.”

&

The linked article is entitled: “Three-part ancestry for Europeans”, indicate that Corded Ware culture brought a lot of Y chromosomes from the Eurasian Steppe (with lactose tolerance), that significantly married local neolithic women.

https://web.archive.org/web/20141011034223/http://news.sciencemag.org/biology/2014/09/three-part-ancestry-europeans (https://web.archive.org/web/20141011034223/http://news.sciencemag.org/biology/2014/09/three-part-ancestry-europeans)

Abstract: “For years, the favored recipe for making a modern European ​was this: Start with DNA from a hunter-gatherer whose ancestors lived in Europe 45,000 years ago, then add genes from an early farmer who migrated to the continent about 9000 years ago. An extensive study of ancient DNA now points to a third ingredient: blood from an Asian nomad who blew into central Europe perhaps only about 4000 or 5000 years ago. This third major lineage originated somewhere in northwestern Asia, perhaps on the steppes of western Asia or in Eastern Europe. This is a "ghost lineage," because no pureblood member of this group survives today. But whoever these people were, their descendants successfully spread far and wide, for their genes show up not only in Europeans but also in Native Americans, according to a talk by paleogeneticist Johannes Krause of the University of Tübingen in Germany, who spoke at a biomolecular archaeology meeting last week. Those who heard the talk in a packed auditorium at the University of Basel were impressed by the genomic data's high resolution—it is the largest data set of ancient DNA ever presented in a single study—even though some aren't convinced about the exact details.​” 

&

The linked Wikipedia article is entitled: “The Seven Daughters of Eve”:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Seven_Daughters_of_Eve (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Seven_Daughters_of_Eve)

Extract: “Sykes wrote in the book that there were seven major mitochondrial lineages for modern Europeans, though he subsequently wrote that with the additional data from Scandinavia and Eastern Europe, Ulrike(see below) could have been promoted to be the eighth clan mother for Europe.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on July 02, 2017, 09:09:59 PM
Thanks for these, ASLR. Very interesting.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Väina on July 03, 2017, 01:00:34 AM
Thanks yet again, ASLR.
It looks like genetic change happens due to regional climate change, disease epidemics and nomadic lifestyle. The period 60 thousand years ago seems to have ended the arabian and MENA "garden of eden" period, such periods happen frequently and when it ends, the people become nomadic and spread elsewhere, working like a cylinder in a pump machine (spreading to Europe, to Africa, to Asia). The same pumping mechanism worked in the steppes after the onset of local neolithic. I have read somewhere that around 3000 BC the eurasian steppe climate became colder and drier. And indeed, the spread of plague around that time also contributed to the success of the descendants of the steppe peoples, because they had likely already developed some immunity against it, which gave their descendants an evolutionary advantage which reinforced itself whenever a new similar plague outbreak occured. But it should not be automatically viewed as a sure military advantage for steppe peoples in the temperate forest zone. Some of such genetic spread might have been due to conscious deliberate selective breeding by the native inhabitants of the temperate zone to gain the additional immunity against plague (and other diseases). After all, humans are but an animal species, not much different from wolves or dogs or other domesticated and bred animals. In fact, humans were the first species to be bred by humans.  ;)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 03, 2017, 04:40:32 PM
The point of my last several paleo-posts is to emphasize that circa 2050 to 2060, we will not only need to deal with abrupt climate change and the technological singularity, but all to: population collapse, disease, warfare, massive human migration, and socio-economic collapse.  Thus any adaption plan for those interested helping their offspring to get past such a bottleneck, would do well to sidestep the brunt of these coming impacts.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on July 03, 2017, 07:52:26 PM
There is an assumption in policy circles that the richer nations will be able to adapt much better than the poorer ones. I do wonder whether there is a limit beyond which the more complex, richer, societies will start to fall apart and some of the simpler ones in luckier locations may survive better.
Most probably needs a strong state with a very high level of social cohesion to manage the downward path without things falling apart. Communist Cuba (which already survived the 'special period' after the ending of USSR support) may be a safer place than the southern US.

The world's poor still have the knowledge of how to get food and have not been conditioned to expect the incredible (in historical terms) lifestyles that the rich have become used to. Therefore, they won't suffer from depression at the loss of their dreams (and the dreams for their children) while not being able to grow/hunt for their own food. Easy for hopelessness and inertia to set in.

They will have to be lucky to be away from more "civilized" folks that will be scavenging for food and in areas where the scale of climate change is still adaptable (for their crops etc.). For example, the Mennonites in Southern Ontario may be overrun by the surrounding communities hungry for their food. At the same time temperature extremes may severely curtail their crop yields.

Perhaps around the Arctic Circle, as the open waters become wonderful fishing grounds? It seems that whatever we plan it will still be a bit of a crap-shoot, just increasing the odds of survival in a chaotic world.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 03, 2017, 10:25:38 PM
While I personally believe that the best way to adapt to the Anthropogene is via mindfulness, I suspect that only a limited number of people will follow that path.  Therefore, I provide a few alter ideas:

1.  Try learning from what is already happening, as is discussed in the first linked article that considers Africa as a perfect testing ground for both climate change and other Anthropocene impacts:

Title: “Africa is the perfect testing ground for adapting to the Anthropocene epoch ”

http://theconversation.com/africa-is-the-perfect-testing-ground-for-adapting-to-the-anthropocene-epoch-65055 (http://theconversation.com/africa-is-the-perfect-testing-ground-for-adapting-to-the-anthropocene-epoch-65055)


2. Try forming sustainable networks with others, as no man is a island.
3. Try to understand the First Noble Truth, that suffering/imperfection exists and then use a balanced middle path to move towards reduced suffering/imperfection.
4. Timing is important, so don't get ahead of yourself and don't fall too far behind the curve.
5. Learn from the mistakes of others.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 05, 2017, 06:42:59 PM
Robert Sapolsky is one of the leading neuroscientists in the world (and winner of a MacArthur Genius grant), studying stress in primates (including humans), and he has recently rewritten a 700 page book entitled: "Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst". 

The following is his Ted talk entitled: "Behave: The Biology of Our Best and Worse Selves"

https://www.ted.com/talks/robert_sapolsky_the_biology_of_our_best_and_worst_selves (https://www.ted.com/talks/robert_sapolsky_the_biology_of_our_best_and_worst_selves)

Extract: "How can humans be so compassionate and altruistic -- and also so brutal and violent? To understand why we do what we do, neuroscientist Robert Sapolsky looks at extreme context, examining actions on timescales from seconds to millions of years before they occurred. In this fascinating talk, he shares

his cutting edge research into the biology that drives our worst and best behaviors."

Also the linked article is a review of this book:

Anne Harrington (20 April 2017), "Human behaviour: Guns and roses", Nature, Volume: 544, Pages: 294–295, doi:10.1038/544294a

https://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v544/n7650/full/544294a.html (https://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v544/n7650/full/544294a.html)

Extract: "On other big issues, such as free will, Sapolsky struggles with his intellectual commitments as a scientist and his moral commitments to a more humane world. Decades of behavioural biology have demonstrated that we have little, if any, free will “worth wanting” (as philosopher Daniel Dennett puts it). Yet, even if all behaviours are biologically caused, grossly aberrant ones may be particularly constrained. Sapolsky concludes that our approach to people who commit crimes should be therapeutic and not vindictive; “words like 'evil' and 'soul' will be as irrelevant as when considering a car with faulty brakes”.

This leads him to a quandary. If you deny free will when it comes to our “worst behaviours”, you must logically deny it when it comes to our best ones. And Sapolsky can't bring himself to do this. He clings to the “homuncular myth” that humans can transcend their circumstances and do the right thing, even if it is the harder thing. The examples of civil-rights leader Martin Luther King, former South African president Nelson Mandela and less celebrated individuals — anonymous soldiers who negotiated the Christmas truce of the First World War, for example — show us that “we personally can cause change”. But change for good, says Sapolsky, is more likely when we understand what kind of animal we are, as well as which traditional levers designed to enhance moral behaviour work and which ones don't.

Will better knowledge of human behavioural biology create the conditions for more Mandelas? Is the science secure enough? Is science on its own enough? I am sure that Sapolsky will encounter plenty of sceptics, but being a naysayer is always easier than offering a way forward. In the end, it is impossible not to deeply admire a project bold enough to ask an entire field to work to create a more just and peaceful world. Whether or not success is assured, Sapolsky exhorts us all — please, just try."

Also, see the linked article entitled: "Behave by Robert Sapolsky review – why do we do what we do?"

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/jun/09/behave-by-robert-sapolsky-review (https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/jun/09/behave-by-robert-sapolsky-review)

Extract: "This magisterial account of human behaviour journeys from immediate brain response back to long-term social causes. It also suggests we have no free will

Sapolsky argues that every human action is inescapably caused by preceding events in the world, including events in the brain"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 05, 2017, 06:43:37 PM
Yuval Noah Harari wrote the book "Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow", and he suggests what the quintessential differentiating behavior between humans and other animals (including apes) is our ability to cooperate via "stories", and he discusses this opinion in the linked Ted talk entitled: "What explains the rise of humans"

https://www.ted.com/talks/yuval_noah_harari_what_explains_the_rise_of_humans (https://www.ted.com/talks/yuval_noah_harari_what_explains_the_rise_of_humans)

Extract: "Seventy thousand years ago, our human ancestors were insignificant animals, just minding their own business in a corner of Africa with all the other animals. But now, few would disagree that humans dominate planet Earth; we've spread to every continent, and our actions determine the fate of other animals (and possibly Earth itself). How did we get from there to here? Historian Yuval Noah Harari suggests a surprising reason for the rise of humanity."

See also, the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_Deus:_A_Brief_History_of_Tomorrow (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_Deus:_A_Brief_History_of_Tomorrow)

•   Extract: "Organisms are algorithms, and as such homo sapiens may not be dominant in a universe where dataism becomes the paradigm.
•   Since the verbal/language revolution some 70,000 years ago, humans live within an "intersubjective reality", such as countries, borders, religion, and money, all created to enable large-scale, flexible cooperation between different individual human beings. Humanity is separated from animals by humans' ability to believe in these intersubjective constructs that exist only in the human mind and are given force through collective belief.
•   Humankind's immense ability to give meaning to its actions and thoughts is what has enabled its many achievements.
•   Humanism is a form of religion that worships humankind instead of God. It puts humankind and its desires as a top priority in the world in which humans themselves are framed as the dominant beings. Humanists believe that ethics and values are derived internally within each individual, rather than from an external source. During the 21st century, Harari believes that humanism may push humans to search for immortality, happiness, and power.
•   Technological developments have threatened the continued ability of humans to give meaning to their lives; Harari prophesies the replacement of humankind with a super-man, or "homo deus" (human god) endowed with supernatural abilities such as eternal life."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on July 05, 2017, 07:55:27 PM
Was just loaned this book. Maybe time to move it toward the pile of books on my bedstand waiting to be read!?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on July 06, 2017, 10:38:51 PM
Found Homo Deus to be very disappointing, seemed like a rushed second book after the success of the first (much better) one - Sapiens.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 10, 2017, 01:41:18 AM
In the linked video, Ray Kurzweil discusses his vision of the future of capitalism.

Title: “Ray Kurzweil: What Is the Future of Capitalism?”

https://singularityhub.com/2017/07/07/ray-kurzweil-what-is-the-future-of-capitalism/ (https://singularityhub.com/2017/07/07/ray-kurzweil-what-is-the-future-of-capitalism/)

Extract: “People disagree on the details, he says, but across the political spectrum most agree we should balance the innovative power of capitalism with a basic compassion for people. He believes information technologies will drive further increases in wealth, and we’ll be able to afford a stronger social safety net in the future. This will dramatically change what we do for work and why.”


See also:

http://www.kurzweilai.net/news (http://www.kurzweilai.net/news)

Title: “‘Mind reading’ technology identifies complex thoughts, using machine learning and fMRI”

http://www.kurzweilai.net/mind-reading-technology-identifies-complex-thoughts-using-machine-learning-and-fmri (http://www.kurzweilai.net/mind-reading-technology-identifies-complex-thoughts-using-machine-learning-and-fmri)

Extract: “By combining machine-learning algorithms with fMRI brain imaging technology, Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) scientists have discovered, in essense, how to “read minds.”

The researchers used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to view how the brain encodes various thoughts (based on blood-flow patterns in the brain). They discovered that the mind’s building blocks for constructing complex thoughts are formed, not by words, but by specific combinations of the brain’s various sub-systems.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 20, 2017, 05:15:43 AM
The linked 26 minute video could be viewed as a marketing pitch for Microsoft, or as insights on the next few (marketable) steps on the long road to a quantum (& AI) enhanced society:

“Research in Focus: Transforming Machine Learning and Optimization through Quantum Computing”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFHstQDFVA (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jfFHstQDFVA)

Extract: “Quantum computing is in its infancy, but Microsoft’s Krysta Svore and Nathan Wiebe talk about quantum techniques as applied to AI challenges. Quantum computing can leverage quantum effects, such as entanglement and quantum interference, to provide solutions to currently unsolvable problems, increasing data security.”

As background see:

Title: "Boltzmann machine"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boltzmann_machine (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boltzmann_machine)

Extract: "A Boltzmann machine is a type of stochastic recurrent neural network (and Markov Random Field).

Boltzmann machines can be seen as the stochastic, generative counterpart of Hopfield nets. They were one of the first neural networks capable of learning internal representations, and are able to represent and (given sufficient time) solve difficult combinatoric problems."

&

Title: “Gibbs sampling”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibbs_sampling (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibbs_sampling)

Extract: “In statistics, Gibbs sampling or a Gibbs sampler is a Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) algorithm for obtaining a sequence of observations which are approximated from a specified multivariate probability distribution, when direct sampling is difficult. This sequence can be used to approximate the joint distribution (e.g., to generate a histogram of the distribution); to approximate the marginal distribution of one of the variables, or some subset of the variables (for example, the unknown parameters or latent variables); or to compute an integral (such as the expected value of one of the variables). Typically, some of the variables correspond to observations whose values are known, and hence do not need to be sampled.

Gibbs sampling is commonly used as a means of statistical inference, especially Bayesian inference. It is a randomized algorithm (i.e. an algorithm that makes use of random numbers), and is an alternative to deterministic algorithms for statistical inference such as the expectation-maximization algorithm (EM).”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 22, 2017, 12:41:00 AM
As a follow-on to my last post, per the first linked article Microsoft's topological quantum computer uses Majorana quasiparticles, which are also described in the following linked reference and associated article:

Title: "THE QUEST FOR A QUANTUM FUTURE"

https://news.microsoft.com/stories/stationq/ (https://news.microsoft.com/stories/stationq/)

Extract: "Station Q researchers will continue to try to do very difficult things, he said, including continuing to pinpoint the existence and characteristics of Majorana particles; trying to detect particles called anyons and explore how those particles might make calculations; finding a way to “braid” strings of anyons through time and space to create stable qubits and therefore quantum properties; and exploring ways to apply topological effects to make qubits more robust."

&

Qing Lin He, et. al. (2017), "Chiral Majorana fermion modes in a quantum anomalous Hall insulator–superconductor structure", Science, Vol. 357, Issue 6348, pp. 294-299, DOI: 10.1126/science.aag2792

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/357/6348/294 (http://science.sciencemag.org/content/357/6348/294)

"A propagating Majorana mode
Although Majorana fermions remain elusive as elementary particles, their solid-state analogs have been observed in hybrid semiconductor-superconductor nanowires. In a nanowire setting, the Majorana states are localized at the ends of the wire. He et al. built a two-dimensional heterostructure in which a one-dimensional Majorana mode is predicted to run along the sample edge (see the Perspective by Pribiag). The heterostructure consisted of a quantum anomalous Hall insulator (QAHI) bar contacted by a superconductor. The authors used an external magnetic field as a “knob” to tune into a regime where a Majorana mode was propagating along the edge of the QAHI bar covered by the superconductor. A signature of this propagation—half-quantized conductance—was then observed in transport experiments.
Science, this issue p. 294; see also p. 252

Abstract
Majorana fermion is a hypothetical particle that is its own antiparticle. We report transport measurements that suggest the existence of one-dimensional chiral Majorana fermion modes in the hybrid system of a quantum anomalous Hall insulator thin film coupled with a superconductor. As the external magnetic field is swept, half-integer quantized conductance plateaus are observed at the locations of magnetization reversals, giving a distinct signature of the Majorana fermion modes. This transport signature is reproducible over many magnetic field sweeps and appears at different temperatures. This finding may open up an avenue to control Majorana fermions for implementing robust topological quantum computing."

&

Title: "Experiment finds evidence for the Majorana fermion, a particle that's its own antiparticle"

https://phys.org/news/2017-07-evidence-majorana-fermion-particle-antiparticle.html (https://phys.org/news/2017-07-evidence-majorana-fermion-particle-antiparticle.html)

Extract: "Far in the future, Zhang said, Majorana fermions could be used to construct robust quantum computers that aren't thrown off by environmental noise, which has been a big obstacle to their development. Since each Majorana is essentially half a subatomic particle, a single qubit of information could be stored in two widely separated Majorana fermions, decreasing the chance that something could perturb them both at once and make them lose the information they carry.
For now, he suggests a name for the chiral Majorana fermion his team discovered: the "angel particle," in reference to the best-selling 2000 thriller "Angels and Demons" in which a secret brotherhood plots to blow up the Vatican with a time bomb whose explosive power comes from matter-antimatter annihilation. Unlike in the book, he noted, in the quantum world of the Majorana fermion there are only angels - no demons."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 29, 2017, 07:42:25 PM
As adapting to the Anthropocene requires individual/situational problem solving skills, it is useful to consider Einstein's advice: "If I had only one hour to save the world, I would spend fifty-five minutes defining the problem and only five minutes finding the solution".

Title: "Einstein's Secret to Amazing Problem Solving (and 10 Specific Ways You Can Use It)"

https://litemind.com/problem-definition/

Extract: "Problem Definition Tools and Strategies

The good news is that getting different perspectives and angles in order to clearly define a problem is a skill that can be learned and developed. As such, there are many strategies you can use to perfect it. Here are the 10 most effective ones I know.

1. Rephrase the Problem
When a Toyota executive asked employees to brainstorm “ways to increase their productivity”, all he got back were blank stares. When he rephrased his request as “ways to make their jobs easier”, he could barely keep up with the amount of suggestions.

2. Expose and Challenge Assumptions
Every problem — no matter how apparently simple it may be — comes with a long list of assumptions attached. Many of these assumptions may be inaccurate and could make your problem statement inadequate or even misguided.

3. Chunk Up
Each problem is a small piece of a greater problem. In the same way that you can explore a problem laterally — such as by playing with words or challenging assumptions — you can also explore it at different “altitudes”.

4. Chunk Down
If each problem is part of a greater problem, it also means that each problem is composed of many smaller problems. It turns out that decomposing a problem in many smaller problems — each of them more specific than the original — can also provide greater insights about it.

5. Find Multiple Perspectives
Before rushing to solve a problem, always make sure you look at it from different perspectives. Looking at it with different eyes is a great way to have instant insight on new, overlooked directions.

6. Use Effective Language Constructs
There isn’t a one-size-fits-all formula for properly crafting the perfect problem statement, but there are some language constructs that always help making it more effective:

7. Make It Engaging
In addition to using effective language constructs, it’s important to come up with a problem statement that truly excites you so you’re in the best frame of mind for creatively tackling the problem. If the problem looks too dull for you, invest the time adding vigor to it while still keeping it genuine. Make it enticing. Your brain will thank (and reward) you later.

8. Reverse the Problem
One trick that usually helps when you’re stuck with a problem is turning it on its head.

9. Gather Facts
Investigate causes and circumstances of the problem. Probe details about it — such as its origins and causes. Especially if you have a problem that’s too vague, investigating facts is usually more productive than trying to solve it right away.

10. Problem-Solve Your Problem Statement
I know I risk getting into an infinite loop here, but as you may have noticed, getting the right perspective of a problem is, well, a problem in itself. As such, feel free to use any creative thinking technique you know to help."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 29, 2017, 10:44:27 PM
As a follow-on to my last post (Reply #284), I begin with a quote from Abraham Maslow: "If the only tool you have is a hammer, you tend to see every problem as a nail."

Thus, when faced with our current sustainability related Anthropocene problems (such as: climate change, crony capitalism, over population, over consumption and excessive pollution), unless we follow Einstein's advice to better identify the nature of our current challenges/problems, we are likely (largely due to systemic isolation associated with self-imposed limitations/ignorance) to use the wrong tools (such as nationalism/populism) in an effort to solve our immediate problems, which can create more problems rather than less.  The use of blunt tools (like nationalism, populism, ESLD and egotistic self-aggrandizement), we can blind ourselves to a long-term perspective that can expand our definition of success to include the well-being of both the "greater good" and future generations (our children).  Crisis thinking (endemic in nationalism, etc.) can be like a hammer preventing us from taking a balanced and objective view of situation; but the correct response is not denial of our problems in order to limit fear associated with crisis thinking.  The correct response is to use more refined tools, such as a balance of such problem solving tools as direct logic, indirect logic and effort to progressively improve our understanding/insight.

For example, nationalism is currently wielding a hammer against mainstream news/information media, MSM, (including science reporting) largely asserting that MSM is facilitating the 'over management' of our global socio-economic system, that is in-turn subjecting people to greater risks associated with mis-management.  To me the rate of change in our global socio-economic systems has left MSM ill equipped to provide information necessary for democracies to function properly, and that it is incumbent up the captains (Google, Facebook, Apple etc) of the new 4th Industrial Revolution, 4IR, to bolster MSM following the model of Jeff Bezos and the Washington Post.  Such skillful application of information technology/science/management to MSM (as Bezos has brought to the WP) makes globalist ideals (such as Technocracy for the 4th Industrial Revolution, T-4IR ) much less fragile and much more sustainable.  The improvement of the MSM would allow the use of much more refined tools that could contribute to a 'controlled crash' of our socio-economic system circa 2050-2060, leading to improved living conditions for subsequent generations.

Edit, see also:

Title: "David Fleming’s “Surviving the Future”"

http://www.resilience.org/stories/2017-06-19/david-flemings-surviving-future/ (http://www.resilience.org/stories/2017-06-19/david-flemings-surviving-future/)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on July 29, 2017, 11:44:32 PM

To me the rate of change in our global socio-economic systems has left MSM ill equipped to provide information necessary for democracies to function properly, and that it is incumbent up the captains (Google, Facebook, Apple etc) of the new 4th Industrial Revolution, 4IR, to bolster MSM following the model of Jeff Bezos and the Washington Post.  Such skillful application of information technology/science/management to MSM (as Bezos has brought to the WP) makes globalist ideals (such as Technocracy for the 4th Industrial Revolution, T-4IR ) much less fragile and much more sustainable.  The improvement of the MSM would allow the use of much more refined tools that could contribute to a 'controlled crash' of our socio-economic system circa 2050-2060, leading to improved living conditions for subsequent generations.

The MSM is a profit-making industry focused on selling consumption to maintain its ad revenues, maintain the profitable status quo, and to help the other parts of the business empires in which they reside. If we want the MSM to support democracy, it should be independent and perhaps ownership limited to cooperative structures. Otherwise, it is simply a tool of manipulation for the powerful. Stepping outside of the MSM and seeing alternative viewpoints is a refreshing experience. Al Jazeera, Democracy Now, Truth Out, Naked Capitalism, Counter Punch etc. are a welcome balance to MSM propaganda. The MSM practice "soft" denial, accepting climate change but playing down the urgency of the situation, so as not to threaten the current economic and social status quo.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on July 29, 2017, 11:58:58 PM
The MSM is a profit-making industry focused on selling consumption to maintain its ad revenues, maintain the profitable status quo, and to help the other parts of the business empires in which they reside. If we want the MSM to support democracy, it should be independent and perhaps ownership limited to cooperative structures. Otherwise, it is simply a tool of manipulation for the powerful. Stepping outside of the MSM and seeing alternative viewpoints is a refreshing experience. Al Jazeera, Democracy Now, Truth Out, Naked Capitalism, Counter Punch etc. are a welcome balance to MSM propaganda. The MSM practice "soft" denial, accepting climate change but playing down the urgency of the situation, so as not to threaten the current economic and social status quo.

All good points; however, I note that true democracy does not exist in any country on Earth, and that it most likely that our global socio-economic system will collapse long before alter news sources save us from our collective foolishness.  Thus working to improve the MSM may have a better chance of leading to a 'controlled crash'.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on July 31, 2017, 05:52:17 AM
As long as the MSM is dependent upon advertising for its revenues, it will stray away from messages that threaten continued consumption and the status quo. Very well covered in the book in "Manufacturing Consent" (Herman and Chomsky), although things have become much worse since then with the concentration of the media and general deregulation.

I expect the MSM to start supporting geo-engineering once it becomes apparent that emissions cannot be cut fast enough without crashing the economy, as a "solution" that supports continued growth and no big challenges to the status quo.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 01, 2017, 04:41:13 AM
As long as the MSM is dependent upon advertising for its revenues, it will stray away from messages that threaten continued consumption and the status quo. Very well covered in the book in "Manufacturing Consent" (Herman and Chomsky), although things have become much worse since then with the concentration of the media and general deregulation.

I expect the MSM to start supporting geo-engineering once it becomes apparent that emissions cannot be cut fast enough without crashing the economy, as a "solution" that supports continued growth and no big challenges to the status quo.

Maybe I am dreaming to hope that a high-tech billionaire (Elon, Mark, Larry, etc.) would upgrade some MSM outlets to free them from some of the worst aspects of money grubbing.  While my biggest concern about the alternate media is that it will likely have too little impact on our global socio-economic system to take much edge off of the coming collapse circa 2050 to 2060 (but any contribution is appreciated).
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 10, 2017, 10:49:34 PM
Maybe one aspect (together with carbon pricing, environmental regulations etc) of the fight against climate change (pre- and/or post-collapse) would be to establish a FDR-style WPA type of government program to take fossil fuel (& other non-4th IR sectors) workers who lose their jobs and give them on-the-job training for such efforts a making existing buildings energy efficient and sustainable agriculture:

The linked Wikipedia article is entitled: "Works Progress Administration"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Works_Progress_Administration (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Works_Progress_Administration)

Extract: "The Works Progress Administration (WPA; renamed in 1939 as the Work Projects Administration) was the largest and most ambitious American New Deal agency, employing millions of people (mostly unskilled men) to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads. In a much smaller project, Federal Project Number One, the WPA employed musicians, artists, writers, actors and directors in large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects.

Almost every community in the United States had a new park, bridge or school constructed by the agency. The WPA's initial appropriation in 1935 was for $4.9 billion (about 6.7 percent of the 1935 GDP)."

See also the linked article entitled: "Bloomberg's News: Fighting Climate Change Makes Us Wealthier, Healthier, And Stronger"

https://www.forbes.com/sites/edfenergyexchange/2017/04/20/bloombergs-news-fighting-climate-change-makes-us-wealthier-healthier-and-stronger/#5c5d93bf6ae5 (https://www.forbes.com/sites/edfenergyexchange/2017/04/20/bloombergs-news-fighting-climate-change-makes-us-wealthier-healthier-and-stronger/#5c5d93bf6ae5)

Extract: "Michael Bloomberg is not your stereotypical environmentalist. “I don’t lose sleep over spotted owls,” he writes in his new book Climate of Hope.

As mayor, Bloomberg learned that “what was good for people and job growth was good for fighting climate change.”

The book describes many other measures that similarly reduce emissions while creating jobs and improving lives, from boosting energy efficiency in buildings to switching to renewable electricity. The crucial larger point is that taking off ideological blinders (of either the left or the right) and examining the evidence from the perspective of a hard-nosed, data- and profit-driven businessman like Bloomberg inevitably leads to the conclusion that reducing emissions makes economic sense—and that the market is already tilting in our favor.

As Bloomberg adds, however, market forces do not magically align themselves with societal need. They can be directed or distorted by policy. Right now, they could use some help through the removal of subsidies and obsolete rules that are slowing the transition to clean energy. Coal’s decline would be even more precipitous if mining leases reflected true market rates, or if the price of coal included the terrible toll it takes on health."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 11, 2017, 11:39:12 PM
The linked (open access) reference confirms that when a quantum Internet is established (in the next couple of decades) everyone with a classical computer will be able to utilize blind quantum computing:

He-Liang Huang et al. (2017), "Experimental Blind Quantum Computing for a Classical Client." Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.119.050503 , Also at arXiv:1707.00400 [quant-ph]

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1707.00400.pdf

Abstract: "To date, blind quantum computing demonstrations require clients to have weak quantum devices. Here we implement a proof-of-principle experiment for completely classical clients. Via classically interacting with two quantum servers that share entanglement, the client accomplishes the task of having the number 15 factorized by servers who are denied information about the computation itself. This concealment is accompanied by a verification protocol that tests servers' honesty and correctness. Our demonstration shows the feasibility of completely classical clients and thus is a key milestone towards secure cloud quantum computing."

Also see the associated article entitled: "Blind quantum computing for everyone"

https://phys.org/news/2017-08-quantum.html

Extract: "For the first time, physicists have demonstrated that clients who possess only classical computers—and no quantum devices—can outsource computing tasks to quantum servers that perform blind quantum computing. "Blind" means the quantum servers do not have full information about the tasks they are computing, which ensures that the clients' computing tasks are kept secure. Until now, all blind quantum computing demonstrations have required that clients have their own quantum devices in order to delegate tasks for blind quantum computing. "
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on August 12, 2017, 06:59:52 PM
As Bloomberg adds, however, market forces do not magically align themselves with societal need. They can be directed or distorted by policy. Right now, they could use some help through the removal of subsidies and obsolete rules that are slowing the transition to clean energy. Coal’s decline would be even more precipitous if mining leases reflected true market rates, or if the price of coal included the terrible toll it takes on health."

Market forces (which "do not magically align themselves with societal need") are a tool that needs to be given direction, especially where they do not properly reflect costs (e.g. externalities). We need a mixture of climate Keynesianism (publicly funded work programs to produce a low-carbon economy) and carbon fees that build in climate externalities. The problem is the powerful self-interested parties that continuously block any such initiatives.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 12, 2017, 07:18:33 PM
Market forces (which "do not magically align themselves with societal need") are a tool that needs to be given direction, especially where they do not properly reflect costs (e.g. externalities). We need a mixture of climate Keynesianism (publicly funded work programs to produce a low-carbon economy) and carbon fees that build in climate externalities. The problem is the powerful self-interested parties that continuously block any such initiatives.

Which is exactly why I recommend that people think positively about what to do both before and after a probable socio-economic collapse circa 2050 to 2060.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on August 12, 2017, 11:38:18 PM
More like "anytime after 2030" for the economic and social collapse to me. Once the general realization of no growth sinks in the financial system will rapidly implode. All asset prices are predicated on continued growth - as with price/earnings ratios and the assumption of repayment of interest. Then of course there is also the assumption of ever increasing tax revenues.

Fighting over a greatly reduced amount of wealth and a level of income curtailed by financial collapse will make for an extremely difficult economic and social period.

In 2030 I will be 67, in 2050 87 if I am lucky enough to still be alive by then. Not so good for the generations after, they won't have had the good fossil-fuelled life that I have enjoyed.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 13, 2017, 12:13:23 AM
More like "anytime after 2030" for the economic and social collapse to me.

I am assuming that the short-term 'benefits' of the 4th Industrial Revolution (including AI and quantum computing) will postpone the socio-economic collapse into the 2050 to 2060 timeframe; but your schedule has a good chance of occurring too:

See the video entitled: "Elon Musk says AI poses more risk than North Korea".

http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/news/elon-musk-says-ai-poses-more-risk-than-north-korea/vi-AApVEfA?ocid=spartandhp (http://www.msn.com/en-us/money/news/elon-musk-says-ai-poses-more-risk-than-north-korea/vi-AApVEfA?ocid=spartandhp)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 16, 2017, 04:06:20 PM
The linked article highlights the fact that our current fossil fuel driven form of crony capitalism (hyper-extractive monopoly capitalism) is not only limiting society's potential (within an equitable economy) but it is also damaging our world via over consumption.  Many of its proposed solutions are comparable to technocratic recommendations:

Title: "Unleashing the Transformative Potential of an Equitable Economy"

http://www.postcarbon.org/unleashing-the-transformative-potential-of-an-equitable-economy/ (http://www.postcarbon.org/unleashing-the-transformative-potential-of-an-equitable-economy/)

Extract: "A more critical explanation for inequality is the ways in which the rules governing the economy have been distorted by power differentials and political factors. These rules—including tax, trade, regulation, public subsidies, and expenditures—have been tipped to advantage asset owners over wage earners, and transnational corporations over domestically-rooted enterprises. As a result, we are living with a particular flavor of a market economy— hyper-extractive monopoly capitalism—that is transferring wealth from workers and communities upwards to a small segment of the population."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 20, 2017, 06:49:20 PM
The most important factor for adapting to the Anthropocene is the cultivation of wisdom; which, in my opinion requires taking the middle path between over optimism and undue pessimism.  In this regards I provide links to the University of California Press's website "Elementa Science of the Anthropocene", which is summarized as:

Extract: "Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene is a trans-disciplinary, open-access journal committed to the facilitation of collaborative, peer-reviewed research. With the ultimate objective of accelerating scientific solutions to the challenges presented by this era of human impact, it is uniquely structured into six distinct knowledge domains, and gives authors the opportunity to publish in one or multiple domains, helping them to present their research and commentary to interested readers from disciplines related to their own."

https://www.elementascience.org/ (https://www.elementascience.org/)


See also:

https://collections.elementascience.org/special-feature-listings (https://collections.elementascience.org/special-feature-listings)

&

https://collections.elementascience.org/avoiding-collapse (https://collections.elementascience.org/avoiding-collapse)

&

Anthony D. Barnosky, Paul R. Ehrlich, Elizabeth A. Hadly (2016), "Avoiding collapse: Grand challenges for science and society to solve by 2050", Elementa: Science of the Anthropocene, DOI: http://doi.org/10.12952/journal.elementa.000094 (http://doi.org/10.12952/journal.elementa.000094)

https://www.elementascience.org/articles/10.12952/journal.elementa.000094/ (https://www.elementascience.org/articles/10.12952/journal.elementa.000094/)
or
https://mahb.stanford.edu/library-item/avoiding-collapse-grand-challenges-science-society-solve-2050/ (https://mahb.stanford.edu/library-item/avoiding-collapse-grand-challenges-science-society-solve-2050/)

Abstract: "We maintain that humanity’s grand challenge is solving the intertwined problems of human population growth and overconsumption, climate change, pollution, ecosystem destruction, disease spillovers, and extinction, in order to avoid environmental tipping points that would make human life more difficult and would irrevocably damage planetary life support systems. These are not future issues: for example, detrimental impacts of climate change (increased wildfires and extreme weather, sea-level rise, ocean acidification), pollution (contaminated drinking water in many parts of the world), rapid population growth in some areas (contributing to poverty, war, and increasingly frequent migration) and overconsumption in others (a main driver of overexploitation of resources and greenhouse gas emissions), and new disease outbreaks (Ebola, Zika virus) already are apparent today, and if trends of the past half century continue, even more damaging, long-lasting impacts would be locked in within three decades. Solving these problems will require some scientific and technological breakthroughs, but that will not be enough. Even more critical will be effective collaboration of environmental and physical scientists with social scientists and those in the humanities, active exchange of information among practitioners in academics, politics, religion, and business and other stakeholders, and clear communication of relevant issues and solutions to the general public. This special feature offers examples of how researchers are addressing this grand challenge through the process of discovering new knowledge and relevant tools, transferring insights across disciplinary boundaries, and establishing critical dialogues with those outside academia to help effect positive global change."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 22, 2017, 06:25:41 PM
Part of adapting to the Anthropocene is better understanding what current socio-economic systems are currently experiencing, and this regards I provide the following quote from a recent article written by Ray Dalio (head of the world's largest hedge fund, Bridgewater).  As the subtext of the article is that we appear currently to be headed down a path of the breakdown of democracy and of rightwing populists authoritarian rule; I provide the attached images of selected Darth Vader quotes:

Title: "While You Were Working - August 21"

http://www.smartbrief.co/original/2017/08/while-you-were-working-august-21 (http://www.smartbrief.co/original/2017/08/while-you-were-working-august-21)

Extract: “History has shown that democracies are healthy when the principles that bind people are stronger than those that divide them, when the rule of law governs disputes, and when compromises are made for the good of the whole—and that democracies are threatened when the principles that divide people are more strongly held than those that bind them and when divided people are more inclined to fight than work to resolve their differences. Conflicts have now intensified to the point that fighting to the death is probably more likely than reconciliation.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 22, 2017, 06:30:19 PM
As my last post was a bit on the dark side, I provide the attached images as alternate interpretations of the human situation/condition:
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 22, 2017, 06:34:33 PM
As I am suggesting the use of mindful wisdom as a preferred path for adapting to the Anthropocene, I provide the attached quotes from the Buddha:
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 22, 2017, 06:37:49 PM
As I have indicated that I believe that the 4th Industrial Revolution (possibly with a technological singularity circa 2047) is also in our collective future, I provide the following quotes from Steve Jobs:
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 03, 2017, 08:08:58 PM
Clearly, climate change has influenced human evolution and just as clearly, evolution will be part of humanity's adaption to the Anthropocene:

Title: "How Humans Are Shaping Our Own Evolution"

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/04/evolution-genetics-medicine-brain-technology-cyborg/ (http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/04/evolution-genetics-medicine-brain-technology-cyborg/)

http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/04/are-we-evolving-illustrations-stand-alone/#technology-versus-natural-selection (http://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2017/04/are-we-evolving-illustrations-stand-alone/#technology-versus-natural-selection)

Extract: "In our world now, the primary mover for reproductive success—and thus evolutionary change—is culture, and its weaponized cousin, technology. That’s because evolution is no match for the speed and variety of modern life.

“DNA was left in the dust by cultural evolution,” he says, “but now it’s catching up.”"

See also:

Title: "Did Ancient Climate Change Ignite Human Evolution?

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/did-ancient-climate-change-ignite-human-evolution/ (https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/did-ancient-climate-change-ignite-human-evolution/)

Extract: "How drying forests and lightning may have turned fire from a primal threat into a life-sustaining object of reverence"

&

Title: "Climate Effects on Human Evolution"

http://humanorigins.si.edu/research/climate-and-human-evolution/climate-effects-human-evolution (http://humanorigins.si.edu/research/climate-and-human-evolution/climate-effects-human-evolution)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: miki on September 03, 2017, 08:14:15 PM
I thought I would drop this here. Business and government will have to adapt, after all.

http://www.earthandwatergroup.com/climate-change/link-between-stronger-science-and-climate-litigation-risks-new-report/ (http://www.earthandwatergroup.com/climate-change/link-between-stronger-science-and-climate-litigation-risks-new-report/)

Nature Geoscience‘s publishes ‘Acts of God, human influence and litigation‘ – a report, co-authored by Earth & Water Law Partner Lindene Patton, which looks at how developments in attribution science impact legal foreseeability of extreme weather events and the duties of built environment professionals, business and government in the face of a changing climate.

"The science of extreme weather attribution is improving rapidly, and is making important predictions about future weather events.  This means the legal duties of those responsible for keeping people, the built environment and the natural world safe are changing too.  Identifying the human influence in events once only understood as ‘acts of god’ will reshape the legal landscape, meaning governments and businesses could be sued if they don’t take action to protect people from floods, heatwaves and other foreseeable climate change risks."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 05, 2017, 03:59:23 PM
The linked open access reference illustrates how quantum information science is not only about AI but can also be used for de-cloaking stealth technology:

La Heras et al (2017), "Quantum illumination reveals phase-shift inducing cloaking", Scientific Reports 7, Article no. 9333, doi:10.1038/s41598-017-0850-w

http://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-08505-w (http://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-08505-w)

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: 6roucho on September 05, 2017, 06:45:46 PM
AbruptSLR, I think there's a great deal of philosophy you may be missing out on, which has nothing to do with theology. As Anne says, most of western philosophy (including metaphysics) has the objective of being rigorously empirical; of making real statements about the world, and of defining what form those statements can meaningfully take. Much of the stringency of the scientific method has its roots in the rigours of formal philosophical discourse. Wittgenstein [or Karl Popper] might be a better starting point than eastern mystics.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 05, 2017, 09:46:35 PM
AbruptSLR, I think there's a great deal of philosophy you may be missing out on, which has nothing to do with theology. As Anne says, most of western philosophy (including metaphysics) has the objective of being rigorously empirical; of making real statements about the world, and of defining what form those statements can meaningfully take. Much of the stringency of the scientific method has its roots in the rigours of formal philosophical discourse. Wittgenstein [or Karl Popper] might be a better starting point than eastern mystics.

6roucho,

Certainly I have a lot to learn; however, from what I know about Popperism; while I support its emphasis on empirical verification, it seems to me that it downplays the use of inductive logic too much.  Popper was a man of the 20th century, but our current 21st century problems and information science can make good use of holographic theory (which I suspect you mistake for eastern mysticism) together with inductive logic to tackle 'wicked problems' (see the first attached image), like climate change.

In this regards, the linked video, and associated pdf & second attached image, illustrate holographic entanglement theory:

Title: “A New Perspective on Holographic Entanglement by Matthew Headrick”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfQcHzuH-dQ (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfQcHzuH-dQ)

See also:

http://people.brandeis.edu/~headrick/talks/NewPerspective.pdf (http://people.brandeis.edu/~headrick/talks/NewPerspective.pdf)

The holographic universe can be interpreted conceptually using String Theory in twelve dimensions (i.e. F-Theory), where lower order dimensions (like the four dimensional time-space continuum of common day experiences) can be taken as the boundary entangled with a higher order bulk (such as the event horizon of a black hole considered in Matthew Headrick's video & pdf).  Furthermore, in my opinion entanglement can be taken as the condition of interacting with the higher order bulk through an imaginary interface/boundary on which classical information appears (see the third image).  However, this interaction is dynamic resulting in a dialectic process such as illustrated in the fourth attached image.  I will discuss this gestalt further in my next post.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 05, 2017, 09:49:01 PM
As a follow-on to my last post, the linked videos present talks by John Preskill that discuss how quantum information science could help to understand a holographic universe:

“"Quantum Computing and the Entanglement Frontier" John Preskill, CalTech”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YdAI1KQnhU4 (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YdAI1KQnhU4)

&

"John Preskill: Quantum information and spacetime (I)"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=td1fz5NLjQs (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=td1fz5NLjQs)

&

“John Preskill: Quantum information and spacetime (II)”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_i4Z5qARmqY (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_i4Z5qARmqY)

The four images illustrate how quantum information science can be used to holistically correct for errors in an entangled holographic universe by correlating the bulk with the boundary information/operators.  This paradigm will be very useful in quantum computing and in AI development in the coming few decades.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 05, 2017, 10:11:02 PM
For those interested in holography, the linked reference provides more background:

M.P. Benowitz (2017), "Universal Theory of General Invariance"

http://vixra.org/abs/1708.0190 (http://vixra.org/abs/1708.0190)
&
http://vixra.org/pdf/1708.0190v1.pdf (http://vixra.org/pdf/1708.0190v1.pdf)

For the abstract see the first attached image

Extract: "Through the introduction of the Principle of General Invariance, three additional quantum mechanical postulates have been put forth. Postulates I & II propose entanglement and holography arise from an underlying noncommutative structure between spatial positions and directions. Postulate III proposes an observationally motivated field equation governing these noncommutative degrees of freedom. The solution to this equation yields a coupled system of equations of state, describing the thermodynamics of the vacuum. To great surprise, these equations predict the existence of the vacua Mon and Mooff. These so-called atoms of spacetime reproduce the observations of the ^CDM model of cosmology { bringing dark energy, dark matter, inflation, and gravitation into a single unified framework. Finally, (and most importantly) we've designed a relatively simple and inexpensive table-top experiment to falsify such extraordinary claims."

The second attached image illustrates how in this holographic model virtual particles formed out of fluctuation of the vacuum are entangled when they are formed.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: 6roucho on September 06, 2017, 10:47:42 AM
AbruptSLR, no: as a [sometimes] working mathematician, I do know the difference between holographic theory and eastern mysticism. I make far bigger mistakes than that, as in my previous dumb comment to you. :-)

But I take your point. I'm not positioning philosophy relative to science, but as as a necessary part of it. Popper doesn't downplay empiricism: he considers its limits. Without epistemology, we'd lack part of the formal language necessary for understanding what true statements mean. Without the language to define proof, how can we have proof?

So, in that sense, we do still need the 20th century.

There's a lame undergraduate joke that "Even Karl Popper gets up in the morning." That's a reference to Popper's [rigorous] disproof of inductive logic. It isn't possible to prove anything by induction, even if induction is useful. Like many useful tools, understanding its limits is a necessary precursor to using it, since otherwise we might feel we've proved things we haven't.

What the joke means is that even though we can't prove the sun will rise tomorrow, simply by reference to a large set of data, it probably will. And probability, in the end, is all we have to go in in the physical sciences. Observing a thing five times doesn't mean it will happen a sixth time, even if we understand all the reasons. One day, that electron [or table] *will* tunnel through that wall. All we need is sufficient time.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 06, 2017, 04:18:37 PM
All we need is sufficient time.
Perhaps you do not appreciate the differences between the teachings of the Buddha and eastern mysticism. The Buddha taught that there is no magic in the universe, yet to reach the ultimate empirical truth he taught that one must transcend the illusions of time and space (as proven by holographic theory), using the recursive application of: deductive logic, inductive logic, the reduction of entropy, concentration/focus/effort/work and letting go of preconditioning; all of which underpin the scientific method.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 06, 2017, 06:46:17 PM
The linked article (& associated open access reference) describes a new path forward to develop a general purpose prototype silicon quantum integrated circuit by 2022, with a general purpose commercial quantum computer to follow shortly thereafter:

Title: "Radical New Quantum Computing Design Invented"

https://www.rdmag.com/news/2017/09/radical-new-quantum-computing-design-invented (https://www.rdmag.com/news/2017/09/radical-new-quantum-computing-design-invented)

Extract: "Engineers at Australia’s University of New South Wales have invented a radical new architecture for quantum computing, based on novel ‘flip-flop qubits’, that promises to make the large-scale manufacture of quantum chips dramatically cheaper – and easier – than thought possible.

The new chip design, detailed in the journal Nature Communications, allows for a silicon quantum processor that can be scaled up without the precise placement of atoms required in other approaches. Importantly, it allows quantum bits (or ‘qubits’) – the basic unit of information in a quantum computer – to be placed hundreds of nanometres apart and still remain coupled.

“What Guilherme and the team have invented is a new way to define a ‘spin qubit’ that uses both the electron and the nucleus of the atom. Crucially, this new qubit can be controlled using electric signals, instead of magnetic ones. Electric signals are significantly easier to distribute and localise within an electronic chip.”

Tosi said the design sidesteps a challenge that all spin-based silicon qubits were expected to face as teams begin building larger and larger arrays of qubits: the need to space them at a distance of only 10-20 nanometres, or just 50 atoms apart.

“If they're too close, or too far apart, the ‘entanglement’ between quantum bits – which is what makes quantum computers so special – doesn’t occur,” Tosi said.

At the other end of the spectrum are superconducting circuits – pursued, for instance, by IBM and Google – and ion traps. These systems are large and easier to fabricate, and are currently leading the way in the number of qubits that can be operated. However, due to their larger dimensions, in the long run they may face challenges when trying to assemble and operate millions of qubits, as required by the most useful quantum algorithms.

“Our new silicon-based approach sits right at the sweet spot,” said Morello, a professor of quantum engineering at UNSW. “It’s easier to fabricate than atomic-scale devices, but still allows us to place a million qubits on a square millimetre.”

In the single-atom qubit used by Morello’s team, and which Tosi’s new design applies, a silicon chip is covered with a layer of insulating silicon oxide, on top of which rests a pattern of metallic electrodes that operate at temperatures near absolute zero and in the presence of a very strong magnetic field.

At the core is a phosphorus atom, from which Morello’s team has previously built two functional qubits using an electron and the nucleus of the atom. These qubits, taken individually, have demonstrated world-record coherence times.

Tosi’s conceptual breakthrough is the creation of an entirely new type of qubit, using both the nucleus andthe electron. In this approach, a qubit ‘0’ state is defined when the spin of the electron is down and the nucleus spin is up, while the ‘1’ state is  when the electron spin is up, and the nuclear spin is down.

“We call it the ‘flip-flop’ qubit,” said Tosi. “To operate this qubit, you need to pull the electron a little bit away from the nucleus, using the electrodes at the top. By doing so, you also create an electric dipole.”

The UNSW team has struck a A$83 million deal between UNSW, telco giant Telstra, Australia’s Commonwealth Bank and the Australian and New South Wales governments to develop, by 2022, a 10-qubit prototype silicon quantum integrated circuit – the first step in building the world’s first quantum computer in silicon."

See the associated reference:

Tosi et al (2017), "Silicon quantum processor with robust long-distance qubit coupling", Nature Communications 8, Article no. 450; doi:10.1038/s41467-017-00378-x
 
http://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-017-00378-x (http://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-017-00378-x)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 06, 2017, 08:42:59 PM
Here is a June 2017 Wired article about the SF Bay Area effort toward providing general purpose commercial quantum computers in the next five plus years:

Title: "The Quantum Computer Factory That’s Taking on Google and IBM"

https://www.wired.com/story/quantum-computing-factory-taking-on-google-ibm/ (https://www.wired.com/story/quantum-computing-factory-taking-on-google-ibm/)

Extract: "No company is yet very close to offering up a quantum computer ready to do useful work existing computers can't. But Google has pledged to commercialize the technology within five years. IBM offers a cloud platform intended as a warmup for a future commercial service that lets developers and researchers play with a prototype chip located in Big Blue’s labs. After a few years of mostly staying quiet, Rigetti is now entering the fray. The company on Tuesday launched its own cloud platform, called Forest, where developers can write code for simulated quantum computers, and some partners get to access the startup's existing quantum hardware. Rigetti gave WIRED a peek at the new manufacturing facility in Fremont—grandly dubbed Fab-1—that just started making chips for testing at the company's headquarters in Berkeley.

But for now, the quantum computing chips in existence are too small to do things conventional computers can't. IBM recently announced one with 16 qubits—the components needed to build a quantum computer—and Google is gunning for around 50 qubits this year. Rigetti has made chips with 8 qubits; it says the new fab will speed up the experimentation needed to increase that number. No one knows for sure, but it’s estimated you’d need hundreds of qubits or more to do useful work on chemistry problems, which seem to be the lowest-hanging fruit for quantum computers."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: 6roucho on September 07, 2017, 12:35:22 PM
All we need is sufficient time.
Perhaps you do not appreciate the differences between the teachings of the Buddha and eastern mysticism. The Buddha taught that there is no magic in the universe, yet to reach the ultimate empirical truth he taught that one must transcend the illusions of time and space (as proven by holographic theory), using the recursive application of: deductive logic, inductive logic, the reduction of entropy, concentration/focus/effort/work and letting go of preconditioning; all of which underpin the scientific method.
Maybe I don't. I consider some of the teachings of the Buddha to be eastern mysticism, since they include unprovable metaphysics, such as reincarnation.  I also consider some of the ideas of my my own religion [Taoism] to be mysticism, although somewhat less so, since Taoism rejects the unprovable.

That doesn't mean *all* of the teachings of Buddha are mysticism. It's easy to find elements of both religions that align with [and predate] modern physics.

I have no problem with mysticism, as long as we recognise it as such, and we're sufficiently rigorous about how we allow it to inform us about the nature of reality. There's undoubtedly a spiritual realm. How and where is crosses the Real is a valuable question.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on September 07, 2017, 03:08:30 PM
6goucho, good  points. But there are those who claim that most of the what you call 'mysticism' in Buddhism are not core to the philosophy/religion, and are in a way accretions. See Buddhism without beliefs:

https://www.amazon.com/Buddhism-Without-Beliefs-Contemporary-Awakening/dp/1573226564 (https://www.amazon.com/Buddhism-Without-Beliefs-Contemporary-Awakening/dp/1573226564)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 07, 2017, 04:51:40 PM
6goucho, good  points. But there are those who claim that most of the what you call 'mysticism' in Buddhism are not core to the philosophy/religion, and are in a way accretions. See Buddhism without beliefs:

https://www.amazon.com/Buddhism-Without-Beliefs-Contemporary-Awakening/dp/1573226564 (https://www.amazon.com/Buddhism-Without-Beliefs-Contemporary-Awakening/dp/1573226564)

wili,

You are correct as the Buddha never taught a religion nor 'mysticism'.  It is disingenuous to hold the Buddha to task because subsequent generations do not fully understand (i.e. misinterpret) what he taught.  For example, the Buddha taught that time is an illusion, so reincarnation cannot mean what 6roucho is implying what it means.  The Buddha's teaching appear to be paradoxical to those who live within pre-conditioned bubbles, in much the same way as people living in a 4D time-space continuum would find that M-theory would stand for Magic-theory.  Indeed, Popper taught about the dangers of inductive logic, but each morning he applied inductive reasoning to trust that the floor would be there when he got out of bed in the morning.

Best,
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 08, 2017, 06:30:12 PM
The linked article indicates that Microsoft's use of Majoranas to produce general purpose quantum computers is making rapid progress:

https://www.scientificcomputing.com/news/2017/09/quantum-detectives-hunt-worlds-first-quantum-computer (https://www.scientificcomputing.com/news/2017/09/quantum-detectives-hunt-worlds-first-quantum-computer)

Extract: "Scientists at the University of Sydney are entering a new phase of development to scale up the next generation of quantum-engineered devices.

These devices will form the heart of the first practical topological* quantum computers.

Dr Cassidy said that building these quantum devices is a "bit like going on a detective hunt".
"When Majorana fermions were first shown to exist in 2012, there were many who said there could be other explanations for the findings," she said.

A challenge to show the findings were caused by Majoranas was put to the research team led by Professor Leo Kouwenhoven, who now leads Microsoft's Station Q in the Netherlands."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 09, 2017, 05:17:33 PM
I have previously discussed the works of Dacher Keltner in this thread, and in the following reference he teams with Alan Cowen to categorize the number of self-reported emotions identified by people:

Alan Cowen & Dacher Keltner (2017), "Self-report captures 27 distinct categories of emotion bridged by continuous gradients", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1702247114

http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2017/08/30/1702247114.abstract (http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2017/08/30/1702247114.abstract)

Significance
Claims about how reported emotional experiences are geometrically organized within a semantic space have shaped the study of emotion. Using statistical methods to analyze reports of emotional states elicited by 2,185 emotionally evocative short videos with richly varying situational content, we uncovered 27 varieties of reported emotional experience. Reported experience is better captured by categories such as “amusement” than by ratings of widely measured affective dimensions such as valence and arousal. Although categories are found to organize dimensional appraisals in a coherent and powerful fashion, many categories are linked by smooth gradients, contrary to discrete theories. Our results comprise an approximation of a geometric structure of reported emotional experience.

Abstract
Emotions are centered in subjective experiences that people represent, in part, with hundreds, if not thousands, of semantic terms. Claims about the distribution of reported emotional states and the boundaries between emotion categories—that is, the geometric organization of the semantic space of emotion—have sparked intense debate. Here we introduce a conceptual framework to analyze reported emotional states elicited by 2,185 short videos, examining the richest array of reported emotional experiences studied to date and the extent to which reported experiences of emotion are structured by discrete and dimensional geometries. Across self-report methods, we find that the videos reliably elicit 27 distinct varieties of reported emotional experience. Further analyses revealed that categorical labels such as amusement better capture reports of subjective experience than commonly measured affective dimensions (e.g., valence and arousal). Although reported emotional experiences are represented within a semantic space best captured by categorical labels, the boundaries between categories of emotion are fuzzy rather than discrete. By analyzing the distribution of reported emotional states we uncover gradients of emotion—from anxiety to fear to horror to disgust, calmness to aesthetic appreciation to awe, and others—that correspond to smooth variation in affective dimensions such as valence and dominance. Reported emotional states occupy a complex, high-dimensional categorical space. In addition, our library of videos and an interactive map of the emotional states they elicit (https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/emogifs/map.html (https://s3-us-west-1.amazonaws.com/emogifs/map.html)) are made available to advance the science of emotion.

See also:

Title: "Scientists discover there are 27 different emotions"

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11920286 (http://www.nzherald.co.nz/lifestyle/news/article.cfm?c_id=6&objectid=11920286)

Extract: "While it was originally thought we feel just six emotions, researchers at UC Berkeley found 27 distinct human emotions and have displayed them on an interactive map.

In addition to happiness, sadness, anger, surprise, fear, and, disgust, they also determined confusion, romance, nostalgia, sexual desire, and others to be distinct emotions …

The 27 emotions humans feel
Admiration
Adoration
Aesthetic Appreciation
Amusement
Anxiety
Awe
Awkwardness
Boredom
Calmness
Confusion
Craving
Disgust
Empathetic pain
Entrancement
Envy
Excitement
Fear
Horror
Interest
Joy
Nostalgia
Romance
Sadness
Satisfaction
Sexual desire
Sympathy
Triumph"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 09, 2017, 05:40:26 PM
I note that the development of compassion via Mettā-panna would be helpful in adapting to the Anthropocene:

Title: "Compassion Is Better than Empathy"

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-clarity/201703/compassion-is-better-empathy (https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-clarity/201703/compassion-is-better-empathy)

Extract: "… too much empathy can be debilitating. When we become too distressed about the suffering of others, we don’t have the cognitive and emotional resources available to do much to help them. Having compassion, a cognitive understanding how they’re feeling, is better for our own well-being and the well-being of those in need.

The idea that there can actually be too much empathy can be traced back to early  Buddhist teachings. Instead of focusing on empathy to the point of draining ourselves emotionally, Buddhism teaches the practice of compassion …

By deliberately imagining yourself, your loved ones, people you feel neutral about, and even people you dislike, experiencing happiness and freedom – you make the world a kinder place. Research in Loving-Kindness meditation shows it builds emotional resilience and meaningful social connections which can help you respond to challenges with compassion."

See also the linked Wikipedia article entitled: "Mettā"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mett%C4%81 (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mett%C4%81)

On a related matter, I believe that 'western' philosophy tends to focus too much on the battle between 'good' and 'evil'; while these words express pre-conditioned concepts that can be better dealt with by breaking them down into more fundamental 'truths' as illustrated by the two attached images relating the pre-conditioned concept of 'evil' to its more fundamental relations to the lack of empathy.

Edit: Regarding the first image, Gilbert was the psychologist for the tribunal at the Nuremberg trails.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 23, 2017, 06:35:59 PM
The linked article illustrates how information theory/science/technology can be used to help make capitalism more sustainable:

Title: "An AI Hedge Fund Created a New Currency to Make Wall Street Work Like Open Source"

https://www.wired.com/2017/02/ai-hedge-fund-created-new-currency-make-wall-street-work-like-open-source/ (https://www.wired.com/2017/02/ai-hedge-fund-created-new-currency-make-wall-street-work-like-open-source/)

Extract: "Wall Street is a competition, a Darwinian battle for the almighty dollar. Gordon Gekko said that greed is good, that it captures "the essence of the evolutionary spirit." A hedge fund hunts for an edge and then maniacally guards it, locking down its trading data and barring its traders from joining the company next door. The big bucks lie in finding market inefficiencies no one else can, succeeding at the expense of others. But Richard Craib wants to change that. He wants to transform Wall Street from a cutthroat competition into a harmonious collaboration.

This morning, the 29-year-old South African technologist and his unorthodox hedge fund, Numerai, started issuing a new digital currency—kind of. Craib's idea is so weird, so unlike anything else that has preceded it, that naming it becomes an exercise in approximation. Inspired by the same tech that underpins bitcoin, his creation joins a growing wave of what people in the world of crypto-finance call "digital tokens," internet-based assets that enable the crowdsourcing of everything from venture capital to computing power. Craib hopes his particular token can turn Wall Street into a place where everyone's on the same team. It's a strange, complicated, and potentially powerful creation that builds on an already audacious arrangement, a new configuration of technology and money that calls into question the market's most cherished premise. Greed is still good, but it's better when people are working together."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 25, 2017, 04:45:30 PM
Commercial quantum computing is preparing to gear-up later this year:

Title: "Microsoft makes play for next wave of computing with quantum computing toolkit"

https://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2017/09/microsoft-quantum-toolkit/

Extract: "At its Ignite conference today, Microsoft announced its moves to embrace the next big thing in computing: quantum computing. Later this year, Microsoft will release a new quantum computing programming language, with full Visual Studio integration, along with a quantum computing simulator. With these, developers will be able to both develop and debug quantum programs implementing quantum algorithms."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on September 26, 2017, 06:42:03 PM
The linked article discusses a new technology that may shortly be able to solve certain class of wicked problems more efficiently than quantum computers:

Title: "Scientists sprinkle "magic dust" of light and matter for faster supercomputers"

http://newatlas.com/magic-dust-polariton-supercomputer/51495/ (http://newatlas.com/magic-dust-polariton-supercomputer/51495/)

Extract: "Supercomputers rely on a "brute force" approach to solve problems, performing billions of calculations very quickly until they arrive at the optimal solution. Quantum computers are emerging that could exponentially speed up this process by performing far more calculations simultaneously, but even they still work on the same principle. But a completely new system has the potential to outperform all of those, using a "magic dust" made of both light and matter as a beacon to highlight the solution directly."

See also:

Berloff et al (2017), "Realizing the classical XY Hamiltonian in polariton simulators", Natural Materials, doi: 10.1038/nmat4971

http://www.nature.com/nmat/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nmat4971.html?foxtrotcallback=true (http://www.nature.com/nmat/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nmat4971.html?foxtrotcallback=true)

Edit, see the related article entitled: "'Magic Dust' Made From Light And Matter Could Power Supercomputers of The Future".

https://www.sciencealert.com/next-gen-supercomputers-could-run-on-magic-dust-made-from-light-and-matter (https://www.sciencealert.com/next-gen-supercomputers-could-run-on-magic-dust-made-from-light-and-matter)

Edit 2, see also:

Title: "New type of supercomputer could be based on 'magic dust' combination of light and matter"

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170925111344.htm (https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170925111344.htm)

Extract: ""We are just at the beginning of exploring the potential of polariton graphs for solving complex problems," said co-author Professor Pavlos Lagoudakis, Head of the Hybrid Photonics Lab at the University of Southampton and the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology, where the experiments were performed. "We are currently scaling up our device to hundreds of nodes, while testing its fundamental computational power. The ultimate goal is a microchip quantum simulator operating at ambient conditions.""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 03, 2017, 08:02:11 PM
The linked article concludes that "… even if a society as a whole has trouble adapting and falls apart, the more flexible segments of that culture can still survive."

Title: "How Vulnerable Are Societies to Collapse?"

http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2017/09/28/how-vulnerable-collapse/#.WdPLxU3fOrQ (http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/crux/2017/09/28/how-vulnerable-collapse/#.WdPLxU3fOrQ)

Extract: "In each of these archaeological cases, it wasn’t the changing climate in itself that brought about suffering but rather each society’s response to the challenges. “There is no such thing as a natural disaster,” says Dugmore. “There are only natural hazards and human vulnerabilities.”

Can our societies adapt quickly and adeptly enough to deal with the pressing problems we face? The answer to that question might lie in how flexible a given culture is in dealing with change and at what point its people choose to act—or not.

There are some worrying signs of inflexibility in today’s world, Hegmon notes. Our nation-states are so large that relocation is not really an option. And we are perhaps overly reliant on large-scale infrastructure like the U.S. electric grid.

Many who benefit personally from the continued burning of oil and coal—from oil giants to car-engine manufacturers—are resisting attempts to shift to an economy based on renewable resources.

… even if a society as a whole has trouble adapting and falls apart, the more flexible segments of that culture can still survive."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 04, 2017, 07:07:15 PM
It looks like quantum computers will need to have more than 50 stable qubits before they can reach the 'quantum computational singularity':

Title: "Scientists pinpoint the singularity for quantum computers"

https://phys.org/news/2017-10-scientists-singularity-quantum.html (https://phys.org/news/2017-10-scientists-singularity-quantum.html)

Extract: "Research groups at leading universities and companies, including Google, Microsoft and IBM, are part of a worldwide race to realise the first quantum computer that crosses into the 'quantum computational singularity'.

This represents a problem so complex that today's top supercomputer would take centuries to find a solution, while a quantum computer could crack it in minutes.

Now a team of scientists from Bristol have discovered that the boundary to this singularity is further away than previously thought."

See also:

http://www.nature.com/nphys/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphys4270.html?foxtrotcallback=true (http://www.nature.com/nphys/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nphys4270.html?foxtrotcallback=true)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 08, 2017, 06:25:51 PM
The linked reference uses cluster analysis and trait mapping to characterize the 'personalities of natural resource management, NRM, by Australia's 56 NRM organizations, with regard to the capability to help society to adapt to climate change.  Such methodologies are particularly well suited for more widespread applications using machine learning to better understand why scientific and policymaking organizations are having so much difficulty in addressing climate change, in general, in a timely manner:

Hobday, A.J., Doerr, V.A.J., Marshall, N.A. et al. (2017), "Adapting to climate change: the role of organisational personalities in natural resource management", Reg Environ Change, https://doi.org/10.1007/s10113-017-1227-0

https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs10113-017-1227-0?utm_content=buffer25824&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Abstract: "Preparing for climate change represents a significant challenge to environmental managers and is influenced by their ability to access and use the latest information. However, communicating and delivering adaption science across diverse stakeholder groups remain a significant challenge. We explore the utility of concepts from personality research to improve understanding of stakeholder capacity. Specifically, we defined eight potential climate-related personality ‘axes’ for natural resource management (NRM) organisations. We surveyed 80% of Australia’s 56 regional NRM organisations to characterise their traits in relation to these axes. Through cluster analysis and trait mapping, we defined six NRM ‘personality types’. These types were unrelated to external factors such as geographic location or land use activities. Rather, five organisational personality axes were important in defining personality type: where information is sourced, strategic skill sets for learning and reorganising, perceptions of risk and the ability to manage for uncertainty, perceptions of the role of NRM groups, and strategies for engagement. Identifying NRM personality type allows organisations to identify and capitalise on their strengths to target their adaptation efforts to maximise success. Organisations can also recognise what they might find most challenging and deliberately collaborate with other personalities with strengths in those areas. Finally, information providers can better understand how to tailor information delivery for improved knowledge exchange between research providers and organisations responsible for sustainability of natural resources, which enables stronger relationships and facilitates evidence-based decision-making."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 16, 2017, 07:47:24 PM
Previously in this thread I have noted that the technological singularity has been projected (by Ray Kurzweil) to occur in the 2045 to 2050 timeframe and also that I have projected that WAIS will have initiated its "main phase" collapse in the 2045 to 2050 timeframe.  In this post I note that under the Chinese Dream formulated by Xi Jinping, China currently plans to have an economy three times larger than that of the USA by the 100th anniversary of the People' Republic in 2049.

Thus I provide the following linked information for those who want to prepare for what I project to be a subsequent global socio-economic collapse in the 2050 to 2060 timeframe due to a combination of:

1. Culture shock associated with the technological singularity;
2. Climate shock resulting from both SLR and the ice-climate feedback associated with the main phase collapse of the WAIS; and
3. The shock of war/famine/disease resulting from the shock doctrine of global nationalist movements such as 'Make China Great Again' and 'Make America Great Again' (see attached image).

Title: "What Xi Jinping Wants"

https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2017/05/what-china-wants/528561/ (https://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2017/05/what-china-wants/528561/)

Extract: "China’s leader is determined to turn his country into “the biggest player in the history of the world.” Can he do it while avoiding a dangerous collision with America?

Xi is so convinced he will succeed in this quest that he has blatantly flouted a cardinal rule for political survival: Never state a target objective and a specific date in the same sentence. Within a month of becoming China’s leader in 2012, Xi specified deadlines for meeting each of his “Two Centennial Goals.” First, China will build a “moderately prosperous society” by doubling its 2010 per capita GDP to $10,000 by 2021, when it celebrates the 100th anniversary of the Chinese Communist Party. Second, it will become a “fully developed, rich, and powerful” nation by the 100th anniversary of the People's Republic in 2049. If China reaches the first goal— which it is on course to do—the IMF estimates that its economy will be 40 percent larger than that of the U.S. (measured in terms of purchasing power parity). If China meets the second target by 2049, its economy will be triple America's."

&

Title: "Why China aims to be number one superpower by 2049

http://www.oxfordtoday.ox.ac.uk/features/why-china-aims-be-number-one-superpower-2049 (http://www.oxfordtoday.ox.ac.uk/features/why-china-aims-be-number-one-superpower-2049)

Extract: "The seeds of world ambition are historical but it would be reckless to dismiss them, says Oxford analyst Tom Miller."

&

See also the linked Wikipedia articles entitled "Two Centenaries" & " Chinese Dream":

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Two_Centenaries (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Two_Centenaries)
&
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Dream (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinese_Dream)

Edit, see also the second attached image, and the following linked Wikipedia article on China's One Belt One Road Initiative:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_Belt_One_Road_Initiative (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One_Belt_One_Road_Initiative)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 26, 2017, 03:17:45 AM
It looks like gene editing is taking off sooner rather than later:

Title: "How scientists hope to treat diseases by editing our RNA"

http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-rna-editing-repair-20171025-htmlstory.html

Extract: "Opening a new chapter in genetic medicine, scientists have devised a method of gene editing that can turn the protein-production machinery of certain cells on and off at will.

The technique, called RNA REPAIR, could one day treat diseases of the brain, muscles, liver and kidney, whose cells don’t readily yield to DNA-editing techniques such as CRISPR-Cas9.

The RNA REPAIR platform could also prove useful in treating cancer and auto-immune disorders — diseases in which dialing down the action of a given gene for a limited period of time might spell the difference between sickness and health.

The new work, published Wednesday in the journal Science, complements another gene-editing advance reported simultaneously in the journal Nature. That new “base editor” can correct single-letter mutations in DNA without splicing the double helix and causing unintended changes in the genome."


See also, Title: "New Science Could Sharpen Crispr's Gene-Editing Scalpel"

https://www.wired.com/story/new-science-could-sharpen-crisprs-gene-editing-scalpel/

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on October 26, 2017, 11:07:23 PM
I must get a copy of this book. Prof. Chris Thomas argues that although species are dying out, new speciation is on the rise also.

“Virtually all countries and islands in the world have experienced substantial increases in the numbers of species that can be found in and on them,”

http://nautil.us/issue/53/monsters/is-the-modern-mass-extinction-overrated

But i don't know if has made the case that speciation outpaces extinction, in fact i don't know if he is arguing that at all. I must get a copy of the book.

sidd
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on October 27, 2017, 04:14:09 AM
sidd, you might want to look at this review of the book:

http://therevelator.org/troubling-take-extinction/

particularly this:

Quote
No bacterium thought about how creating oxygen might affect its fellow early earthlings; nor could it do anything to change that. Cataclysmic seismology or a stray asteroid are even less likely to have thought about the literal impact of their actions. And no matter how ubiquitous the little bird from the Asian steppe has become, no sparrow thinks about its place in the natural order.

People do.

That’s exactly Thomas’s logical flaw. Calling human-caused change “natural” is dangerously reductive. Both in scope and speed, people are altering the planet in ways no other species does. We have changed the very chemistry of the Earth. We’re driving the extinction crisis
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on October 27, 2017, 05:00:48 AM
I want to read the book for the evidence of increased speciation. That is new to me. As to whether we are in ecological crisis, I think that is what Prof. Thomas says is driving increased speciation.

But I want to see his numbers.

sidd
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: wili on October 27, 2017, 07:09:04 AM
It sounds like it's more a series of anecdotes than a number-crunching exercise...and also a lot of wishful thinking and dubious philosophizing...but go ahead, get the book, or better, borrow it from a library...and get back to us.

Hotter planets can, eventually, lead to greater speciation, as far as i have read, because it is mostly smaller species that survive, and that means more places for more small critters to specialize...

But that takes some time, and there are many, many factors challenging the success of all such species now and for the foreseeable future...
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 27, 2017, 03:23:15 PM
The linked article indicates that climate change is threatening the agrobiodiversity that is needed to protect our future food supply from disease and pests.  As this thread focuses on human adaption to the Anthropocene it is important to consider how fragile our food chain is:

Title: "The Sixth Mass Extinction of Wildlife Also Threatens Global Food Supplies"

http://www.climatecentral.org/news/sixth-mass-extinction-of-wildlife-also-threatens-global-food-supplies-21735

Extract: "“Huge proportions of the plant and animal species that form the foundation of our food supply are just as endangered [as wildlife] and are getting almost no attention,” said Ann Tutwiler, director general of Bioversity International, a research group that published a new report.

“If there is one thing we cannot allow to become extinct, it is the species that provide the food that sustains each and every one of the seven billion people on our planet,” she said in an article for the Guardian. “This ‘agrobiodiversity’ is a precious resource that we are losing, and yet it can also help solve or mitigate many challenges the world is facing. It has a critical yet overlooked role in helping us improve global nutrition, reduce our impact on the environment and adapt to climate change.”"

Also, it is not just the number of species that are affected but also the absolute number of population within those species that matter, as discussed in the following reference:

Gerardo Ceballos, Paul R. Ehrlich, and Rodolfo Dirzo (2017), "Biological annihilation via the ongoing sixth mass extinction signaled by vertebrate population losses and declines", PNAS, vol. 114 no. 30,   E6089–E6096, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1704949114

http://www.pnas.org/content/114/30/E6089.abstract

Abstract: "The population extinction pulse we describe here shows, from a quantitative viewpoint, that Earth’s sixth mass extinction is more severe than perceived when looking exclusively at species extinctions. Therefore, humanity needs to address anthropogenic population extirpation and decimation immediately. That conclusion is based on analyses of the numbers and degrees of range contraction (indicative of population shrinkage and/or population extinctions according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature) using a sample of 27,600 vertebrate species, and on a more detailed analysis documenting the population extinctions between 1900 and 2015 in 177 mammal species. We find that the rate of population loss in terrestrial vertebrates is extremely high—even in “species of low concern.” In our sample, comprising nearly half of known vertebrate species, 32% (8,851/27,600) are decreasing; that is, they have decreased in population size and range. In the 177 mammals for which we have detailed data, all have lost 30% or more of their geographic ranges and more than 40% of the species have experienced severe population declines (>80% range shrinkage). Our data indicate that beyond global species extinctions Earth is experiencing a huge episode of population declines and extirpations, which will have negative cascading consequences on ecosystem functioning and services vital to sustaining civilization. We describe this as a “biological annihilation” to highlight the current magnitude of Earth’s ongoing sixth major extinction event."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: gerontocrat on October 27, 2017, 03:30:08 PM
I want to read the book for the evidence of increased speciation. That is new to me. As to whether we are in ecological crisis, I think that is what Prof. Thomas says is driving increased speciation.

But I want to see his numbers.

sidd
Scientists find new species every day. Does this mean that lots of new species are emerging? Probably not. The more a subject is studied the more is found out. There are probably thousands and thousands of life forms as yet unidentified.
Are there peer-reviewed studies demonstrating that increased speciation is occurring as opposed to more species being identified?
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 27, 2017, 05:24:05 PM
AI can now exceed human performance without learning from humans:

Title: "AlphaGo Zero Shows Machines Can Become Superhuman Without Any Help"

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/609141/alphago-zero-shows-machines-can-become-superhuman-without-any-help/

Extract: "AlphaGo wasn’t the best Go player on the planet for very long. A new version of the masterful AI program has emerged, and it’s a monster. In a head-to-head matchup, AlphaGo Zero defeated the original program by 100 games to none.

What’s really cool is how AlphaGo Zero did it. Whereas the original AlphaGo learned by ingesting data from hundreds of thousands of games played by human experts, AlphaGo Zero, also developed by the Alphabet subsidiary DeepMind, started with nothing but a blank board and the rules of the game. It learned simply by playing millions of games against itself, using what it learned in each game to improve.

Both AlphaGo and AlphaGo Zero use a machine-learning approach known as reinforcement learning (see “10 Breakthrough Technologies 2017: Reinforcement Learning”) as well as deep neural networks. Reinforcement learning is inspired by the way animals seem to learn through experimentation and feedback, and DeepMind has used the technique to achieve superhuman performance in simpler Atari games."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 28, 2017, 11:29:38 PM
While technological means of addressing climate change tend to be more transitory than systemic improvements; nevertheless, I thought I would note two technological means to help adapt to the Anthropocene:

First, I note that some researchers have suggested putting a dust/debris could in a Lissajous orbit (imagine a mirror image of the first attached figure) around the sun where it could be used to dim the intensity of solar radiation striking the Earth, thus partially compensating for global warming.  Here I noted that if such a plan were to be combined with asteroid mining (see the linked article), the valuable components of the asteroid could help to improve the economics of such a plan while the debris from the mining operation could be pulverized to help form such a solar shield.

Title: "What do we need to know to mine an asteroid?"

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/09/170919092612.htm

Extract: "The mining of resources contained in asteroids, for use as propellant, building materials or in life-support systems, has the potential to revolutionise exploration of our Solar System. To make this concept a reality, we need to increase our knowledge of the very diverse population of accessible Near Earth Asteroids (NEA)."


Second, I think that rather then send people to a colony on Mars (as Musk is proposing) as a back-up plan to the existential risks of socio-economic collapse and of nuclear war, it would be more practical to invest in floating communities similar to that proposed by the 'Floating City Project' (discussed at the linked website), but to include submerge living areas that would protect against possible future radiation.  Possibly mining of offshore diamonds (see the second attached image, showing such an area offshore of South Africa) from such a floating community could help to improve its economics:

Title: "Floating City Project: A fresh start on a floating community by 2020"

https://www.seasteading.org/floating-city-project/

Edit: The third attached image shows the bathymetry offshore Southern Africa in the area of the kimberlite pipes; and the fourth image shows a conceptual semi-submersible platform capable of operating in such deep water with such a challenging MetOcean conditions.

Edit 2, see also:

Title: "Subsea mining moves closer to shore"

https://phys.org/news/2017-02-subsea-closer-shore.html
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on October 29, 2017, 02:18:30 PM
While I am on a roll about technological adaptations that society could adopt to better cope with the Anthropocene, the first two images illustrate that SIMTECHE working together with Nexant developed and demonstrated an economical process for separating CO2 from representative fossil fuel power plant emissions using CO2 hydrates.  The third image shows a phase diagram that indicates that such CO2 hydrates would be stable at pressures and temperatures below a depth of about 1,000 m almost anywhere in the ocean (the article discusses forming the hydrates directly in the ocean at depths below 1,500 m, but I think that it would be more economical to use the SIMTECHE process to pre-form the hydrates before sequestering them at depth).

The linked article discusses the sequestration of CO2 in hydrate form in the deep ocean

A.C.Chow, E.E.Adams, P.H.Israelsson, C.Tsouris (February 2009), "Carbon dioxide hydrate particles for ocean carbon sequestration", Energy Procedia, Volume 1, Issue 1, , Pages 4937-4944, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.egypro.2009.02.325

http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1876610209009680

Abstract: "This paper presents strategies for producing negatively buoyant CO2 hydrate composite particles for ocean carbon sequestration. Our study is based on recent field observations showing that a continuous-jet hydrate reactor located at an ocean depth of 1500 m produced curved negatively buoyant cylindrical particles with diameters ∼2.5 cm and lengths up to ∼1 m. Accordingly we performed new laboratory experiments to determine the drag coefficient of such particles and, based on the measured drag coefficient and the initial settling velocity observed in the field, have concluded that the reactor efficiency (percentage of liquid CO2 converted to hydrate) in the field was ∼16%. Using the dissolution rates observed in the field, we conclude that such particles would ultimately sink to depth below discharge of ∼115 m. We have also predicted the sinking depth of particles potentially produced from various scaled-up reactors and have shown that, for example, a 10 cm diameter particle produced with a hydrate conversion of 50% could reach the ocean bottom before completely dissolving.

In a real sequestration scenario, we are interested in following large groups of hydrate particles released continuously. We have previously shown that increasing particle size and hydrate conversion efficiency enhances the sinking of hydrate particle plumes produced by the continuous release of CO2 in a quiescent ambient, but that a sufficiently strong current will cause the entrained particles to separate from the plume and settle discretely. In the latter case, particles of different sizes and hydrate conversions (hence different settling velocities) will follow different settling trajectories as they dissolve. This particle fractionation, if employed deliberately, spreads the discharged CO2 in the down current and vertical directions, enhancing mixing, while turbulent diffusion helps spread the CO2 in the third direction. A numerical model that incorporates these processes is used to predict the downstream concentrations and changes in pH from such particle plumes in a ‘strong’ current. An extension of this model simulates hydrate particles that are released continuously from a moving ship. Because of the ship speed, such particles would never form a coherent plume, but the combination of particle fractionation and advection due to the ship motion produces excellent dilution of the discharged CO2."

Edit: The fourth image shows a representative concrete hulled tension leg platform that can be stationed in water depths of over 1,000 m to support such CO2 hydrate sequestering operations
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 07, 2017, 11:27:37 PM
The linked reference indicates that fusing quarks can release more than eight times the about of energy as deuterium-tritium nuclear fusion.  While the very short lifetimes of the resulting heavy bottom and charm quarks is too short to sustain a chain reaction (such as that employed in a bomb); maybe someday someone will think of a way to extract useful energy without employing a chain reaction:

Marek Karliner & Jonathan L. Rosner (2017), "Quark-level analogue of nuclear fusion with doubly heavy baryons", Nature, doi:10.1038/nature24289

https://www.nature.com/articles/nature24289.epdf?referrer_access_token=O5kwdWIYrf9Jci6eN_2TRdRgN0jAjWel9jnR3ZoTv0MwVq8cmHLuj5WCtSbfQ6pv5qW_5FS9B6KfsqxMVjIpKGsNlpMfjsuzJSXaWiJtYDvg5MByZU7iniH4NPkzrURmM11bRRLREnN3c4hLDnbedacpQ1TVCNo9qpZv6uWMrngnm4lY2r0-moIFXJObuEY1gtDhnO2o_DqH3CmjpQM_bXVHccZGiMPce3GBE-iRx_ePY7lVE3pdYMN1ur8X9kljV8jPaoQ2pqE_c6qJNFOkisHj6IsTb8ekjdPwjfyX2IE%3D&tracking_referrer=www.newsweek.com
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 08, 2017, 10:02:27 PM
The linked SciAm article is entitled: "Will Democracy Survive Big Data and Artificial Intelligence?", and asks questions about our changing 4th Industrial Revolution institutions that are worth thinking about before Machiavellian-types (think Russiagate) impose sub-optimal realities upon us all:

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/will-democracy-survive-big-data-and-artificial-intelligence/

Extract: "We are in the middle of a technological upheaval that will transform the way society is organized. We must make the right decisions now

Everything will become intelligent; soon we will not only have smart phones, but also smart homes, smart factories and smart cities. Should we also expect these developments to result in smart nations and a smarter planet?

This all has radical economic consequences: in the coming 10 to 20 years around half of today's jobs will be threatened by algorithms. 40% of today's top 500 companies will have vanished in a decade.

One thing is clear: the way in which we organize the economy and society will change fundamentally. We are experiencing the largest transformation since the end of the Second World War; after the automation of production and the creation of self-driving cars the automation of society is next. With this, society is at a crossroads, which promises great opportunities, but also considerable risks. If we take the wrong decisions it could threaten our greatest historical achievements.

Under the label of “nudging,” and on massive scale, governments are trying to steer citizens towards healthier or more environmentally friendly behaviour by means of a "nudge"—a modern form of paternalism. The new, caring government is not only interested in what we do, but also wants to make sure that we do the things that it considers to be right. The magic phrase is "big nudging", which is the combination of big data with nudging. To many, this appears to be a sort of digital scepter that allows one to govern the masses efficiently, without having to involve citizens in democratic processes. Could this overcome vested interests and optimize the course of the world? If so, then citizens could be governed by a data-empowered “wise king”, who would be able to produce desired economic and social outcomes almost as if with a digital magic wand.

But one look at the relevant scientific literature shows that attempts to control opinions, in the sense of their "optimization", are doomed to fail because of the complexity of the problem. The dynamics of the formation of opinions are full of surprises. Nobody knows how the digital magic wand, that is to say the manipulative nudging technique, should best be used. What would have been the right or wrong measure often is apparent only afterwards.

During elections, they might nudge undecided voters towards supporting them—a manipulation that would be hard to detect. Therefore, whoever controls this technology can win elections—by nudging themselves to power.

What undesirable side effects can we expect? In order for manipulation to stay unnoticed, it takes a so-called resonance effect—suggestions that are sufficiently customized to each individual. In this way, local trends are gradually reinforced by repetition, leading all the way to the "filter bubble" or "echo chamber effect": in the end, all you might get is your own opinions reflected back at you. This causes social polarization, resulting in the formation of separate groups that no longer understand each other and find themselves increasingly at conflict with one another. In this way, personalized information can unintentionally destroy social cohesion. This can be currently observed in American politics, where Democrats and Republicans are increasingly drifting apart, so that political compromises become almost impossible. The result is a fragmentation, possibly even a disintegration, of society.

Perhaps even more significant is the fact that manipulative methods change the way we make our decisions. They override the otherwise relevant cultural and social cues, at least temporarily. In summary, the large-scale use of manipulative methods could cause serious social damage, including the brutalization of behavior in the digital world. Who should be held responsible for this?

In a rapidly changing world a super-intelligence can never make perfect decisions (see Fig. 1): systemic complexity is increasing faster than data volumes, which are growing faster than the ability to process them, and data transfer rates are limited. This results in disregarding local knowledge and facts, which are important to reach good solutions. Distributed, local control methods are often superior to centralized approaches, especially in complex systems whose behaviors are highly variable, hardly predictable and not capable of real-time optimization.

In other words: personalized information builds a "filter bubble" around us, a kind of digital prison for our thinking. How could creativity and thinking "out of the box" be possible under such conditions? Ultimately, a centralized system of technocratic behavioral and social control using a super-intelligent information system would result in a new form of dictatorship. Therefore, the top-down controlled society, which comes under the banner of "liberal paternalism," is in principle nothing else than a totalitarian regime with a rosy cover.

Collective intelligence requires a high degree of diversity. This is, however, being reduced by today's personalized information systems, which reinforce trends.

Our society is at a crossroads: If ever more powerful algorithms would be controlled by a few decision-makers and reduce our self-determination, we would fall back in a Feudalism 2.0, as important historical achievements would be lost. Now, however, we have the chance to choose the path to digital democracy or democracy 2.0, which would benefit us all

However, Big Nudging is not suitable to solve many of our problems. This is particularly true for the complexity-related challenges of our world. Although already 90 countries use Nudging, it has not reduced our societal problems - on the contrary. Global warming is progressing. World peace is fragile, and terrorism is on the rise. Cybercrime explodes, and also the economic and debt crisis is not solved in many countries."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 08, 2017, 10:23:36 PM
Here is a follow-on to my last post:

Title: "Government-By-Nudge Is a Global Phenomenon"

http://bigthink.com/Mind-Matters/government-by-nudge-is-a-global-phenomenon

Extract: "Nudges, "choice architecture," social marketing and other non-rational approaches to government are a pretty significant development. After all, these policies replace explicit arguments ("you should get more exercise for these reasons") with hidden persuasion ("in our next building, let's hide the elevator and make the stairs really prominent?"). That's a major change for any democracy. Yet many people are unimpressed, because they think of these policies as a pack of First World Problems. We in the rich world hear of these policies when they're put in place to prompt us to eat less, exercise more, save money for retirement and otherwise act sensibly. How privileged we are to worry about such things, when people in less prosperous countries face beheadings, plane crashes, Ebola or the arrival of jackbooted thugs at 2 a.m. You might think most governments have more pressing things to do than use behavioral research to get citizens to become an organ donor. But if you think that, you are wrong, as this study reveals (pdf). Its authors found non-rational approaches to persuasion are now in use in a large majority of nations—rich, middling and poor."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: pileus on November 08, 2017, 11:04:46 PM
The SciAm article reviewed by ASLR in post #337 is also referenced in a recent Mother Jones article, "You Will Lose Your Job to a Robot - And Sooner Than You Think".  These two together reinforce the coming reality of 40-50% unemployment, perhaps higher, by the early 2030s (not sure if the MJ piece is referenced elsewhere on the site, apologies if this is duplicative).

Just a personal observation on something that was touched in in the SciAm article: the leap from smartphones to smart homes, cities, etc.  First of all I view them as crude and silly, but I am as resistant as possible to things like Siri, and in-home devices such as Alexa.  I don't enjoy shouting at a device, but it's also a way for me to hold on to my humanity.  For now at least, it's a choice and a voluntary submission to AI when leveraging something like Alexa (which by the way, in 5 years will be seen as ridiculously rudimentary and archaic).  At some point, as AI overwhemes and matures, resisting will become both more difficult and create disadvantages or inconveniences.  So before that time arrives, we can remain as human as humanly possible, while still taking advantage of the obvious and less intrusive benefits of advanced technology.

Here's the MJ link

http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/10/you-will-lose-your-job-to-a-robot-and-sooner-than-you-think/
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 09, 2017, 04:15:49 PM
Richard Thaler just won the 2017 Nobel prize for economics based on his 'nudge' discussed in my two previous posts; which assumes that the general public tends to make 'irrational' economic decisions (largely due to how they deal with the uncertainties of complex situations) and need to be 'nudged' into rational behavior.  But as the first linked article indicates this approach at its best assumes that technocrats (liberal-democratic globalists) know better than the people how to handle decision making in complex situations, while at it's worse this approach can be hi-jacked by isolationist/nationalist populists (like Trump or Putin) to Machiavellian ends (such as stealing the US 2016 elections via covert AI spam-bots such as those used by both the Russians and by Cambridge Analytica, to help Trump will the 2016 US presidential election):

Title: "This year’s economics Nobel winner invented a tool that’s both brilliant and undemocratic"

https://www.vox.com/the-big-idea/2017/10/16/16481836/nudges-thaler-nobel-economics-prize-undemocratic-tool

Extract: "“Nudges” aren’t good for democracy.

Together with his co-author, Harvard Law’s Cass Sunstein, Thaler is responsible for developing and popularizing the notion of “nudges” as a policy tool. Over the past decade, policymakers around the world have taken up Thaler and Sunstein’s ideas, setting up government nudge units and other programs intended to guide people toward choices that are in their best interests. Nudging has become fashionable."

Thaler and Sunstein argue that nudging is a win-win. Unlike traditional regulation, it doesn’t force people to make choices that they don’t want to make. Yet unlike a “laissez faire” approach it doesn’t assume that people should be left to make their own choices free of outside interference. Instead, their approach structures choices so that people are going to be nudged into making the choice that is probably best for them. In Thaler’s description:

if you want to get somebody to do something, make it easy. If you want to get people to eat healthier foods, then put healthier foods in the cafeteria, and make them easier to find, and make them taste better. So in every meeting I say, “Make it easy.”

The problem — as Carnegie Mellon’s Cosma Shalizi and I have discussed elsewhere — is that government-by-nudging amounts to a kind of technocracy, which assumes that experts will know which choices are in the interests of ordinary people better than those people know themselves. This may be true under some circumstances, but it will not be true all of the time, or even most of the time, if there are no good opportunities for those ordinary people to voice their preferences."

See also:

Title: "Nobel prize in economics awarded to Richard Thaler"

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/oct/09/nobel-prize-in-economics-richard-thaler

&
Title: "This headline is a nudge to get you to read about Nobel economist Richard Thaler"

https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2017/10/9/16447752/richard-thaler-nobel-explained-economics

Extract: "The message of behavioral economics as a subfield, and Thaler’s work in particular, is sometimes summarized as “humans aren’t rational.” Economics has historically relied heavily on models of behavior where individual agents rationally pursue their goals, and so challenging that central assumption was crucially important, especially when Thaler’s most influential papers on the subject came out in the 1980s.

But “people aren’t rational” is, on its own, a pretty obvious point. The real contribution of Thaler and other behavioral economics researchers, like psychologists Amos Tversky and Daniel Kahneman (a 2002 Nobel laureate), was identifying specific kinds of irrationality that could be predicted and modeled ahead of time. Rationality was always a simplifying assumption in economic models, and even if that assumption is implausible, it’s hard to dislodge without different, usable assumptions to put in its place. Thaler and his fellow researchers helped identified durable biases that could be modeled and used to supplement a purely rational model of human behavior."

Edit:  As chaos theory uses strange attractors to help model complex systems, it is understandable how 'nudging' can be used to push irrational humans to take the easy route and fall into a strange attractor such as a political party (whether alt-right, right, moderate, left or alt-left).  The first attached image is provided to remind readers that right-wing parties and left-wing parties have been dialectally spirally around each other for centuries but now instead of converging towards a synthesis, they are currently diverging into 'culture wars' such as alt-right populists (like Trumpism) vs alt-left (like the globalist establishment/technocrats); which could bifurcate into either Feudalism 2.0 or Democracy 2.0 (or Technocracy 2.0) depending on the global out-come of the current 'culture wars' (e.g. 'othering' vs liberal-democracy), see the second attached image.  The outcome of this conflict can be modified by institutional changes as Thaler discusses in the SciAm article that I linked to a few posts ago, or else by improving the irrational human by the application of mindfulness.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 10, 2017, 04:59:57 PM
The linked pdf presentation is entitled: "40 years after Limits to Growth The World3 system dynamics model and it’s impacts", and it compares the World3 Limits to Growth (released in 1972) projections to data thru 2015 (see the first three attached images, where the solid curves indicate observed data and the dotted curves are the World3 projections).  In my opinion, it appears likely that alternate natural resources (fracking, etc) and the coming 4th Industrial Revolution will likely push the date for peak global human population out about 2050 when the 2017 UN projections indicate that the global population will be about 9.8 billion +/- 0.5 billion (see the fourth image).  By 2060, I suspect that the global population may drop into the 6 to 7 billion range and will continue to drop for sometime thereafter.  Unless things change from BAU behavior almost immediately, young people should plan accordingly:

http://www.wrforum.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Limits-to-growth.pdf

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 11, 2017, 07:26:56 PM
In my last post I noted that young people might want to take action now that would help in a post-collapse society.  In this regards, I present the linked article that describes the 'Safety Net' initiative to try to preserve biodiversity while mapping how to responsibly help to feed a grow global population:

Title: "Mapping how to feed 9 billion humans, while avoiding environmental calamity"

https://news.mongabay.com/2017/11/mapping-how-to-feed-9-billion-humans-while-avoiding-environmental-calamity/

Extract: "Yesterday The Leonardo Dicaprio Foundation unveiled an ambitious plan to protect and connect 50 percent of the world’s land area as part of a broader effort to curb global warming, stave off the global extinction crisis, and ensure food availability for the planet’s growing human population.

The first step of the “Safety Net” initiative is to identify the best opportunities to protect and restore ecosystems that underpin human well-being and sustain healthy wildlife populations. That means incorporating data on variables ranging from species richness to climate trends to deforestation rates for every point on Earth’s surface."

See also:
Title: "Scientific Reticence: a DRAFT Discussion:

http://www.columbia.edu/~jeh1/mailings/2017/20171026_ScientificReticence.pdf
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 14, 2017, 05:08:41 PM
As a follow-on to Reply #334 (see also #335) about floating cities, the linked New York Times article indicates that this technological approach to sustainability, addresses many political/socio-economic/governmental problems with our current land-based infrastructure:

Title: "Floating Cities, No Longer Science Fiction, Begin to Take Shape"

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/13/business/dealbook/seasteading-floating-cities.html

Extract: "… in 2017, with sea levels rising because of climate change and established political orders around the world teetering under the strains of populism, seasteading can seem not just practical, but downright appealing.

Earlier this year, the government of French Polynesia agreed to let the Seasteading Institute begin testing in its waters. Construction could begin soon, and the first floating buildings — the nucleus of a city — might be inhabitable in just a few years.

“If you could have a floating city, it would essentially be a start-up country,” said Joe Quirk, president of the Seasteading Institute. “We can create a huge diversity of governments for a huge diversity of people.”"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 16, 2017, 12:33:25 AM
As a follow-on to Replies 337, 338 & 340, the linked article indicates that for nudging to work effectively, the nudger should not only have 'skin in the game', but he/she should also be humble (to the point of realizing that there is no I, no me, no my).  Thus while classical psychology may have a limited record of success, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy has had a much better record, and pure mindfulness meditation can lead to an end to systemic cognitive distortions (i.e. can bring an end to an individual's suffering).

Title: "Who Nudges the Nudgers?"

https://jacobitemag.com/2017/10/26/who-nudges-the-nudgers/

Extract: "Every ideology or political system is a mirror of sorts. If we hold the mirror of libertarian paternalism up to the world and gaze up at its reflection, what do we see? We see a world populated by irrational individuals, ensnared by all manner of cognitive biases—anchoring, the availability heuristic, status quo bias, herd mentality, etc. But, there’s hope! In this reflection—for it is a good reflection, perhaps slightly rose-tinted—we also see policy-makers benignly accounting for these biases and nudging citizens toward better ends—away from Big Gulps and penny stocks, toward mineral water and ETFs.

A funny thing happens, though, if you hold up two of these mirrors. The benevolent bureaucrats so beloved from the reflection of the solitary mirror now appear as if — gasp! — they too are subject to the same set of cognitive biases afflicting ordinary citizens. And it gets worse: in this double-refracted world, the bureaucrats are not so benevolent — in fact they are rather self-interested. And rather than nudging people toward The Good, they nudge in ways which flatter their favorite politicians; they nudge according to the dictates of their corporate backers; they nudge with an eye to what they think will look good in a research paper; they nudge, in short, in a way that is human.

The starting place, and impetus for nudging is a recognition that man is not homo economicus. What Thaler forgets is that economists aren’t homo economicus either. For there to be nudging, there must be not only be a nudgee but a nudger as well. And for the system as a whole to function, the interests of both parties must be aligned.

Effective nudging is thus a tall order. And given psychology’s abysmal track record, there is good reason to be skeptical.

Having seen the pitfalls of a naive reliance on bureaucratic science, we are now a position to explain the challenge of paternalism. What unites all the examples of regulatory failure is not their deviance from scientific consensus—quite the contrary. Nor does the failure stem from restricting individual liberty.

What dooms all these would-be paternalists is a lack of interest in the long-term success of their interventions and a lack of any natural bond of sympathy or understanding with those whom they are nudging. We can summarize both of these points by using the now-classic Talebbian formulation:  The problem is that paternalists have no skin in the game. That “skin” may be reputational (perhaps the esteem of one’s fellow nudgers) or it may be material (perhaps a payment tied to a particular outcome). But, it must be a real incentive. And that incentive must be aligned with the interest of society if the nudge is to succeed.

The mistake at the heart of the nudging mindset is the view that abstract knowledge is sufficient to govern, and that pure, detached rational deliberation is capable of producing such knowledge.

The question is not what a bureaucracy knows, but what the consequences will be if an intervention succeeds or fails.

When spelled out in simple terms, the logic of skin in the game seems unimpeachable.

There is no doubt the paternalists of the world will continue to note, register, count, price, admonish, prevent, reform, redress, and correct. But they should do so in a spirit of humility with their incentives aligned. Let this be their nudge."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 24, 2017, 08:34:21 PM
My Reply # 334, noted that subsea mining activity on the continental shelves of the world will soon be accelerating, but cast doubts on the viability of deepsea mining anytime soon.  However, the two following linked article indicate that rapid developments of both technology, such as AI and robotics (see the attached image of subsea robots ready to mining in Indonesia by 2019), and regulations (see the second linked article), indicate that tomorrow may come sooner than we think and it could be partially driven by the insatiable need to feed rare earth minerals to the growing green energy market:

Title: "Is deep sea mining vital for a greener future – even if it destroys ecosystems?"

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/jun/04/is-deep-sea-mining-vital-for-greener-future-even-if-it-means-destroying-precious-ecosystems

Extract: "A new gold rush is targeting rich ores on the ocean floor containing valuable metals needed for smartphones and green technologies, but also hosting exotic ecosystems

Mining the deep ocean floor for valuable metals is both inevitable and vital, according to the scientists, engineers and industrialists exploring the world’s newest mining frontier.

The special metals found in rich deposits there are critical for smart electronics and crucial green technologies, such as solar power and electric cars. But as the world’s population rises, demand is now outstripping the production from mines on land for some important elements.

Those leading the global rush to place giant mining machines thousands of metres below the sea surface say the extraordinary richness of the underwater ores mean the environmental impacts will be far lower than on land. But critics say exotic and little-known ecosystems in the deep oceans could be destroyed and must be protected.

Dozens of exploration licences have already been granted for huge tracts of ocean floor and world leaders, including the G7 nations (pdf), have their eyes on the opportunities. But the rules to ensure the responsible exploitation of this global resource are still being written.

The acid test is set to be the start of commercial sea bed mining, due to begin within two years, 1,600m below waters off Papua New Guinea. There, Nautilus Minerals plans to release three giant crawling machines to grind up rocks rich in copper, zinc and gold and pump the slurry up to a custom-built surface ship at a rate of over 3,000 tonnes a day.

“The seafloor contains some of the largest known accumulations of metals essential for the green economy, in concentrations generally much higher than on land, so it is inevitable that we will eventually recover essential resources from the seafloor,” he said.

Companies backed by Russia, Germany, France, Portugal, South Korea, Brazil and more are all pushing ahead on deep sea mining and almost all of the Atlantic ridge from the equator to the Arctic circle has been claimed in recent years. Now Norwegian researchers are exploring the seafloor deep into the Arctic circle and have found several new vent systems near Jan Meyen island.

“I think there is huge potential,” says Filipa Marques, at Bergen University, adding that Norway’s 40-year history of offshore oil and gas puts it in a strong position to exploit the resources.

Most of the people involved in deep sea mining expect large-scale commercial production in about a decade, with companies seeking to benefit from the experiences of Nautilus. “Everyone is racing to be second,” says Fjellroth."

&

Showstack, R. (2017), "Deep-seabed mining may come soon, says head of governing group", Eos, 98, https://doi.org/10.1029/2017EO087489

https://eos.org/articles/deep-seabed-mining-may-come-soon-says-head-of-governing-group?utm_source=eos&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=EosBuzz112417

Extract: "New regulations could open the door for sustainable mining, says the head of the International Seabed Authority. However, he and others pointed to environmental, financial, and technical challenges.

Hannington cautioned that although the number of areas with evidence of some valuable minerals is “astounding,” there is a big difference between a potential mineral resource and just a mineral occurrence. Global mining companies, he observed, currently are on the sidelines and don’t necessarily view deep-seabed mining as something of immediate interest.

Once new regulations governing exploitation are approved, possibly within a few years, mining likely would start slowly at relatively small scales, according to Lodge and others. “I think it will start off with a few operators who are willing to take the risk and invest that capital,” said Lodge. However, at least one expert attending the seafloor mining forum disagreed with that forecast. Larry Meinert, deputy associate director for energy and mineral resources at the U.S. Geological Survey, told Eos that he doesn’t see “a viable way to develop deep-sea mining as an industry.”
“No company could afford to put in a billion dollars of assessment to figure out whether this could be done,” said Meinert, who spoke about minerals at an earlier session of the NASEM meeting. “There’s no economic model that could pay for that.”
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on November 28, 2017, 06:32:38 PM
The linked article discusses some of the progress and challenges for producing practicable quantum computers:

Title: "Key component to scale up quantum computing"

https://phys.org/news/2017-11-key-component-scale-quantum.html

Extract: " A team at the University of Sydney and Microsoft, in collaboration with Stanford University in the US, has miniaturised a component that is essential for the scale-up of quantum computing. The work constitutes the first practical application of a new phase of matter, first discovered in 2006, the so-called topological insulators.

The Sydney team's component, coined a microwave circulator, acts like a traffic roundabout, ensuring that electrical signals only propagate in one direction, clockwise or anti-clockwise, as required. Similar devices are found in mobile phone base-stations and radar systems, and will be required in large quantities in the construction of quantum computers. A major limitation, until now, is that typical circulators are bulky objects the size of your hand.

This invention, reported by the Sydney team today in the journal Nature Communications, represents the miniaturisation of the common circulator device by a factor of 1000. This has been done by exploiting the properties of topological insulators to slow the speed of light in the material. This minaturisation paves the way for many circulators to be integrated on a chip and manufactured in the large quantities that will be needed to build quantum computers.

"It is not just about qubits, the fundamental building blocks for quantum machines. Building a large-scale quantum computer will also need a revolution in classical computing and device engineering," Professor Reilly said.

"Even if we had millions of qubits today, it is not clear that we have the classical technology to control them. Realising a scaled-up quantum computer will require the invention of new devices and techniques at the quantum-classical interface."

Lead author of the paper and PhD candidate Alice Mahoney said: "Such compact circulators could be implemented in a variety of quantum hardware platforms, irrespective of the particular quantum system used."

A practical quantum computer is still some years away."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 06, 2018, 05:08:47 PM
In a global society addicted to consumption, the following article offers good advice on how to adapt to this reality, while trying to make a difference:

Title: "The Savior Complex"

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-high-functioning-alcoholic/201702/the-savior-complex

Extract: "The problem is that trying to "save" someone does not allow the other individual to take responsibility for his or her own actions and to develop internal motivation.  Therefore, the positive (or negative) changes may only be temporary.

“Humans are addicted to suffering at different levels and to different degrees, and we support each other in maintaining these addictions”""
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 13, 2018, 06:41:40 PM
Why does Trump believe that many Norwegian would want to immigrate to the USA, when the linked article indicates that consideration of coming climate change impacts would lead one to conclude that many Americans should want to immigrate to Norway:

Title: "The best countries to escape the worst effects of climate change"

http://www.businessinsider.com/best-countries-escape-climate-change-map-2018-1

Extract: " "The bottom line is it's going to be bad everywhere," Bruce Riordan, the director of the Climate Readiness Institute at the University of California, Berkeley, told Business Insider. "It's a matter of who gets organized around this."

That said, some countries will fare far better than others, according to UK-based energy comparison service Eco Experts, which created a color-coded map using data from the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index. The index analyzes 181 countries based on factors like healthcare, food supply, and government stability and ranks them on their ability to cope with the challenges posed by a warming planet. Norway ranked #1, while a handful of other Nordic countries (and New Zealand) followed."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on January 14, 2018, 08:05:13 PM
That said, some countries will fare far better than others, according to UK-based energy comparison service Eco Experts, which created a color-coded map using data from the Notre Dame Global Adaptation Index. The index analyzes 181 countries based on factors like healthcare, food supply, and government stability and ranks them on their ability to cope with the challenges posed by a warming planet. Norway ranked #1, while a handful of other Nordic countries (and New Zealand) followed."

The devil is always in the detail of such things, and it certainly is for this index. The "readiness" measure basically assumes a neoliberal model with "the ability to start a new business" and "mobility of investment" major measures. Nowhere is there a measure of the ability of the government to take charge (a la World War mobilization) and drive the changes necessary. Looked at in that way, the US would be way down the list. There is no understanding that large amounts of current infrastructure may act as an impediment for change, rather than as a positive.

Also, I wonder on what science they base the impact assumptions. Three feet plus of sea level rise would render places like Denmark in deep problems, no matter how "ready" they are.

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Avalonian on January 14, 2018, 09:26:37 PM
That is rather a wacky diagram. I mean, they don't seem to have paid much attention at all to predictions for aridity or extreme weather development. Spain is in the clear, apparently, as well as Australia. Central Asian states are no worse off than China or Russia, despite relying on rapidly-diminishing glacial run-off from the Tian Shan. Etc., etc. etc...

Plus, I agree completely about the assessment of the social side of the analysis. Apparently they considered 'food supplies', which seems to me to be the single most critical aspect (aside from drinking water), but what knock-on effects will the desertification of California have, for example..? The whole thing looks like a simple publicity exercise, to me.

But, exploring the idea, which countries would be best able to adapt to a generic extreme warming scenario? Excluding ones that turn to desert, get drowned by sea level rise, or are too hot for survival, I suspect you'd be looking for ones without too much technological development, that grow most of their own food already, and in which society is rather local. Some of the least-connected cultures on Earth are probably going to be the most self-reliant - say, the Andaman Islands, or indigenous tribes in Brazil, Bolivia or Ecuador. Isolated oceanic islands shouldn't see the extremes of heat as much as large land masses; those around the southern end of South America, for example, or the Falklands, might remain habitable, or even improve. Look for low-population places where the local climate is currently cool, and which don't rely heavily on imports, and you've got a good chance of successful adaptation, I reckon.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on January 14, 2018, 10:19:58 PM
If the Brazilian rainforest turns into savanna, wont be too good for the indigenous. Also, I think that Bolivia is highly dependent on glacial run off.

Am doing my PhD thesis on societal resilience in the face of climate change, so couldn't help jump on this simplistic index.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Avalonian on January 14, 2018, 10:35:26 PM
If the Brazilian rainforest turns into savanna, wont be too good for the indigenous. Also, I think that Bolivia is highly dependent on glacial run off.

Am doing my PhD thesis on societal resilience in the face of climate change, so couldn't help jump on this simplistic index.

Excellent - good project!  What sort of cultures are you focusing on?

Indeed, for Brazil - but if any rainforest survives in the west, then maybe traditional cultures will survive with them. I know the cities of Bolivia are highly dependent on glaciers, but not so sure about most of the broadleaved forest areas in the Yungas region, for example... it's so hard to predict future rainfall patterns, but overall there should be an increase in precipitation globally, and mountain areas should still get the bulk of it. Parts of the Andes, I can't help thinking, should remain entirely habitable.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 14, 2018, 11:05:55 PM
Am doing my PhD thesis on societal resilience in the face of climate change, so couldn't help jump on this simplistic index.

rboyd,

I am glad to read that you are working on a PhD thesis on societal resilience in the face of climate change.  And while I fully concur that the study that I linked to is simplistic, I believe that the interactions of our global socio-economic system and climate change are so complex as to make any/all analyzes, that I have seen, simplistic.  Thus, on this topic, the most important consideration is that each individual lean to take as much responsibility for their own decisions as practicable.

For example, if sea level increases three to sixteen feet this century, the associated freshwater hosing feedback mechanism will effectively invalidate all CMIP5 climate change projections, thus making any analysis that over relies on CMIP5 projections, invalid to one degree or other.  Thus each people needs keep updating any relating information/projections on a regular basis.

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: rboyd on January 15, 2018, 02:40:01 AM
One of the hardest parts is dealing with the science when the official consensus is so far off base and the probability of non-linear behaviour so high. There are a lot of scenarios (which have alarmingly high real probabilities) that would render many countries' efforts irrelevant. The biggest question then becomes the political system's ability to deal with "planned retreat".

Really bad if its a whole country (Denmark, Holland, Mexico, Bangladesh?), but pretty bad if its even a part of a country (The deltas of Egypt, Vietnam and China, the South of Florida, the US Southeast, Burnaby British Columbia in Canada?). Getting people to accept that their assets are worthless, and getting others to help (rather than blame) them may overwhelm many political systems. Much may be squandered on trying to save the unsavable. The "Grapes of Wrath" rapidly comes to mind.

And yes, any thesis on the sublect will always be simplistic versus the actual complexity of the issue.
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 15, 2018, 04:11:59 AM
And yes, any thesis on the sublect will always be simplistic versus the actual complexity of the issue.

rboyd,

Every march to the sea begins with a single step.

Best of luck on your dissertation (or is yours really a thesis?).
ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on January 30, 2018, 07:31:32 PM
In my opinion, a collapse of the WAIS this century would likely accelerate schedule for the long overdue flipping of the Earth's magnetic poles.  So I hope people prepare accordingly:

Title: "Earth's Magnetic Poles Are Overdue For a Switch And We're Not Prepared"

https://www.sciencealert.com/earth-magnetic-poles-reversal-switch-overdue-turbulent

Extract: "Within the last 20 million years, Earth has fallen into the pattern of pole reversal every 200,000 to 300,000 years, and between successful swaps, the poles sometimes even attempt to reverse and then snap back into place.

About 40,000 years ago, the poles made one such unsuccessful attempt, and the last full swap was about 780,000 years ago, so we're a bit overdue for a pole reversal based on the established pattern.

The planet's magnetic field is already shifting, which could signify the poles are preparing to flip, and while we can't yet confirm that a reversal is on the near horizon, it is well within the realm of possibility.

To try to determine whether or not a flip is imminent, scientists have begun using satellite imagery and complex calculations to study the shifting of the magnetic field.

They've found that molten iron and nickel are draining energy from the dipole at the edge of the Earth's core, which is where the planet's magnetic field is generated.

They also found that the north magnetic pole is especially turbulent and unpredictable. If the magnetic blocks become strong enough to sufficiently weaken the dipole, the poles will officially switch.

Again, while it is not a certainty that the switch will happen soon, this activity at the Earth's core suggests that it is possible in the near future."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 07, 2018, 10:12:40 PM
China is determined to take the lead in AI development by 2020:

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-01-25/china-determined-to-match-western-competitors-in-ai/9357048

Extract: ""China has a declared ambition to equal the US in its AI capability by 2020 and to be number one in the world by 2030," said Professor Toby Walsh …

The Chinese Government's Next Generation Artificial Intelligence Development Plan, announced last year, aims to create a massive US$150 billion AI industry in China by 2030."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on February 08, 2018, 02:26:20 AM
"In my opinion, a collapse of the WAIS this century would likely accelerate schedule for the long overdue flipping of the Earth's magnetic poles. "

Interesting. What leads you to this opinion ? Do tell.

sidd
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 08, 2018, 03:36:34 AM
"In my opinion, a collapse of the WAIS this century would likely accelerate schedule for the long overdue flipping of the Earth's magnetic poles. "

Interesting. What leads you to this opinion ? Do tell.

sidd

Here is some background references:


1. Adam C. Maloof Galen P. Halverson Joseph L. Kirschvink Daniel P. Schrag Benjamin P. Weiss Paul F. Hoffman (2006), "Combined paleomagnetic, isotopic, and stratigraphic evidence for true polar wander from the Neoproterozoic Akademikerbreen Group, Svalbard, Norway",  GSA Bulletin, 118 (9-10): 1099-1124, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1130/B25892.1

https://pubs.geoscienceworld.org/gsa/gsabulletin/article-abstract/118/9-10/1099/125331/combined-paleomagnetic-isotopic-and-stratigraphic?redirectedFrom=fulltext

Abstract: "We present new paleomagnetic data from three Middle Neoproterozoic carbonate units of East Svalbard, Norway. The paleomagnetic record is gleaned from 50 to 650 m of continuous, platformal carbonate sediment, is reproduced at three locations distributed over >100 km on a single craton, and scores a 5–6 (out of 7) on the Van der Voo (1990) reliability scale. Two >50° shifts in paleomagnetic direction are coincident with equally abrupt shifts in δ13C and transient changes in relative sea level. We explore four possible explanations for these coincidental changes: rapid plate tectonic rotation during depositional hiatus, magnetic excursions, nongeocentric axial-dipole fields, and true polar wander. We conclude that the observations are explained most readily by rapid shifts in paleogeography associated with a pair of true polar wander events. Future work in sediments of equivalent age from other basins can test directly the true polar wander hypothesis because this type of event would affect every continent in a predictable manner, depending on the continent's changing position relative to Earth's spin axis."

2. J. R. Creveling, J. X. Mitrovica, N.-H. Chan, K. Latychev & I. Matsuyama (08 November 2012), "Mechanisms for oscillatory true polar wander", Nature, volume 491, pages 244–248,
doi:10.1038/nature11571

http://www.nature.com/articles/nature11571

Abstract: "Palaeomagnetic studies of Palaeoproterozoic to Cretaceous rocks propose a suite of large and relatively rapid (tens of degrees over 10 to 100 million years) excursions of the rotation pole relative to the surface geography, or true polar wander (TPW). These excursions may be linked in an oscillatory, approximately coaxial succession about the centre of the contemporaneous supercontinent. Within the framework of a standard rotational theory, in which a delayed viscous adjustment of the rotational bulge acts to stabilize the rotation axis, geodynamic models for oscillatory TPW generally appeal to consecutive, opposite loading phases of comparable magnitude. Here we extend a nonlinear rotational stability theory to incorporate the stabilizing effect of TPW-induced elastic stresses in the lithosphere. We demonstrate that convectively driven inertia perturbations acting on a nearly prolate, non-hydrostatic Earth with an effective elastic lithospheric thickness of about 10 kilometres yield oscillatory TPW paths consistent with palaeomagnetic inferences. This estimate of elastic thickness can be reduced, even to zero, if the rotation axis is stabilized by long-term excess ellipticity in the plane of the TPW. We speculate that these sources of stabilization, acting on TPW driven by a time-varying mantle flow field, provide a mechanism for linking the distinct, oscillatory TPW events of the past few billion years."

3. To learn how much the North Pole has shifted in the recent decades due to rapid ice mass loss, see Chen, J..L., C.R. Wilson, J.C. Ries, B.D. Tapley, Rapid ice melting drives Earth's pole to the east, Geophys. Res. Lett., Vol. 40, 1-6, DOI: 10.1002/grl.50552, 2013; which can be found at the prime author's website at the University of Texas, where you can download a preprint (made available by the author):

http://www.csr.utexas.edu/personal/chen/publication.html

and here is a link directly to the preprint pdf:

ftp://ftp.csr.utexas.edu/pub/ggfc/papers/2013GL056164_preprint.pdf


Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: sidd on February 08, 2018, 06:55:23 AM
Do you mean magnetic pole or rotational pole ? both the papers you cite talk about the rotational pole.

sidd
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 08, 2018, 05:08:51 PM
Do you mean magnetic pole or rotational pole ? both the papers you cite talk about the rotational pole.

sidd

sidd,

I will move this line of discussion to the 'Ice Apocalypse' thread (see the link below) in the Antarctic folder as this topic was meant to be just a word of warning here.  However, my general point is that a some portion of the changes in the magnetic pole can be associated with changes in the rotational pole (the attached image illustrates how fast this is currently changing), due to changes in the magma flow associated with ice mass redistribution.  Furthermore, my point is that due to the current exceptionally high rate of anthropogenic forcing and the bipolar seesaw mechanism that possible abrupt changes in ice mass loss can make faster changes in tectonic behavior than observed in the paleorecord.

https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,2205.50.html

ASLR
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 12, 2018, 03:49:10 AM
For those who are interested:

Title: "Yesterday, World Leaders Gathered at a Secretive Meeting to Decide the Fate of AI"

https://futurism.com/govern-fate-ai/

Extract: "Today, top individuals from around the world convened at the World Government Summit to discuss the agenda that should govern the next generation of governments. Yesterday, a select few of these leaders gathered secretive meeting to discuss the guidelines that nations should use as they help their people come to terms with no longer being the only sentient species on the planet.

Of course, this was just one of many topics of discussion. Attendees also discussed the most immediate ways they can implement AI to make our lives better, who should govern AI, and how to navigate the perilous roads ahead."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: Sebastian Jones on February 12, 2018, 05:37:44 AM
Regarding the future of AI: CBC Ideas program is running a very interesting series, taking an in-depth look at the future of work and artificial intelligence.
http://www.cbc.ca/radio/ideas/artificial-intelligence-robots-and-the-future-of-work-1.4286200 (http://www.cbc.ca/radio/ideas/artificial-intelligence-robots-and-the-future-of-work-1.4286200)
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 23, 2018, 07:12:16 PM
I note that UN official are raising that climate change is coming much faster than the Paris Accord assumes, they are currently approaching the High Tech leaders to try to encourage a new form of 'Technocracy' that could better fight climate change:

Title: "Why Solving Climate Change Will Be Like Mobilizing for War"

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2015/10/why-only-a-technocratic-revolution-can-win-the-climate-change-war/410377/

Extract: "It’s clear that the market is unlikely to solve the problem of climate change on its own. If scientists are right, and there is no reason to think they aren’t, averting climate change will require such large-scale, rapid action, that no single energy technology, new or emerging, could be the solution. Neither could any single non-energy technology, such as video-conferencing as a substitute for travel, solve the problem on its own.

Assuming we do manage to significantly accelerate deployment without cancerous levels of corporatist corruption, if emissions targets still remain out of reach, some growth must be temporarily sacrificed. At the same time, investment across the portfolio of energy technologies will need to continue.

In other words, we are contemplating the sorts of austerities associated with wartime economies. For ordinary Americans, austerities might include an end to expansive suburban lifestyles and budget air travel, and an accelerated return to high-density urban living and train travel. For businesses, this might mean rethinking entire supply chains, as high-emissions sectors become unviable under new emissions regimes.

What Gates and others are advocating for is not so much a technological revolution as a technocratic one. One for which there is no successful peacetime precedent. Which is not to say, of course, that it cannot work. There is always a first time for every new level of complexity and scale in human cooperation. But it’s sobering to look back at the (partial) precedents we do have.

Like many technologists whose opinions have been shaped by Internet-era technologies, I’d like to see the institutions we are being asked to trust adopt some of the operating mechanisms I have grown to trust. Like many, including presumably Bill Gates, I hope the climate war will be fought with agile, open processes, networked organizational forms, and a great deal more autonomy for low-level actors than technocracies have historically been willing to cede.

I’d also like claims to professional authority on the part of frontline actors to be based on visible accomplishments rather than credentials. I hope the action (or inaction, rather) will not be driven by gridlocked committees inching towards ineffective and expensive compromises with excruciating slowness, after hundreds of thousands of Bangladeshis and Sub-Saharan Africans have already lost their lives or livelihoods.

But to base decisions on comparisons between imaginary more-perfect institutions that might exist, and flawed, but slowly evolving institutions that do exist, is a perfect example of the nirvana fallacy. The pragmatic path is to trust that the technocrats in charge will fight the necessary bureaucratic battles with sufficient skill and professionalism to actually win in time to make a difference.

Can this work? There’s a slim chance, but it’s probably the best chance we have. And even a small chance of preventing massive misery in parts of the world (and periods of the future) that did not cause the problem, is worth taking."

See also:

Title: "Nirvana fallacy"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nirvana_fallacy

Edit, also see:

B. H. Samset, M. Sand, C. J. Smith, S. E. Bauer, P. M. Forster, J. S. Fuglestvedt, S. Osprey & C.-F. Schleussner (24 January 2018), "Climate Impacts From a Removal of Anthropogenic Aerosol Emissions", Geophysical Research Letters, DOI: 10.1002/2017GL076079

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2017GL076079/full

Abstract: "Limiting global warming to 1.5 or 2.0°C requires strong mitigation of anthropogenic greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Concurrently, emissions of anthropogenic aerosols will decline, due to coemission with GHG, and measures to improve air quality. However, the combined climate effect of GHG and aerosol emissions over the industrial era is poorly constrained. Here we show the climate impacts from removing present-day anthropogenic aerosol emissions and compare them to the impacts from moderate GHG-dominated global warming. Removing aerosols induces a global mean surface heating of 0.5–1.1°C, and precipitation increase of 2.0–4.6%. Extreme weather indices also increase. We find a higher sensitivity of extreme events to aerosol reductions, per degree of surface warming, in particular over the major aerosol emission regions. Under near-term warming, we find that regional climate change will depend strongly on the balance between aerosol and GHG forcing."

Edit2, see also:

Title: "The Fourth Industrial Revolution can lead us to a zero-carbon future - if we act now"

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2018/01/how-we-can-direct-the-fourth-industrial-revolution-towards-a-zero-carbon-future/
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on February 28, 2018, 06:30:00 PM
The synergy between AI and quantum computing will result in a virtuous feedback loop that will accelerate advancements in both fields in the coming decades:

Title: "AI Will Lead the Charge Developing Quantum Computers"

https://futurism.com/ai-developing-quantum-computers/

Extract: "Although quantum physics deals with the "physics of the small," measuring quantum systems is no small feat. To make things simple, researchers turned to artificial neural networks and machine learning."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on March 19, 2018, 03:45:54 AM
The linked article provides interesting background on the history/nature of technocracy in China:

Title: "Kuora: Why do technocrats dominate China’s political elite? - While American politicians have law degrees?"

https://supchina.com/2018/03/05/kuora-why-do-technocrats-dominate-chinas-political-elite/

Extract: "I’m greatly oversimplifying here, but I believe that in a country like China, where the notion that a knowledge elite should run the show is deeply ingrained, technocracy was somehow a natural fit with the political culture. Mengzi (Mencius, the most famous of Confucius’s followers) once said, “Let those who labor with their heads rule those who labor with their hands.” But it goes back earlier than the 4th–3rd century B.C.E., when he lived: In China’s first well-attested historical dynasty, the Shang, a shamanic priesthood, whose power was built on oracular divination and communing with ancestor spirits, held power, and technology such as it was — bronze casting, scapulamancy, and plastromancy — was dominated by that priestly caste. In imperial times, from roughly 60 years into the Han (206 B.C.E. to C.E. 220) through the Qing’s collapse in the early 20th century, a class of scholar-officials, whose elite status was predicated on the “truths” contained in the Confucian canon and certified by passing a series of civil service exams, ruled China, with, of course, some not insignificant interruptions.

With the end of the exam system and the repudiation of Confucianism by the intelligentsia of the early 20th century, there was an effort to supplant the “truths” of the old order with new, scientific (perhaps more accurately, scientistic) truths. Part of this explains the embrace of the “scientific” theories of Marxist dialectical materialism that made Communism popular. Even the paroxysms of Mao’s Cultural Revolution — the spasmodic violence, the complete upheaval and turbulence — only attest to how deeply rooted this political privilege accorded to knowledge elites has been in the Chinese political culture.

Turning to the U.S., to me it seems equally natural that lawyers should dominate the political elite in a country built on rule of law, checks and balances (an independent judiciary, for instance), and a fundamentally adversarial concept of politics. It’s really been in the American DNA since the founding of the country. John Adams was, of course, a lawyer, and despite his dedication to the cause of independence, even defended the British soldiers after the Boston Massacre. James Madison wasn’t a lawyer, though he clearly had aspired to be one (but never gained admission to the bar). It’s hard for me to imagine how the U.S. could be any other way."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: CalamityCountdown on April 02, 2018, 01:24:57 AM
I just noticed that NASA posted an update on their satellite sea level observations for the period ending 12/17/17.

After over a year of sideways and downward movement from late 2015 through early 2017, the most recent NASA report shows that over the past year an acceleration in sea level rise has become visible on the NASA graph, even with just a quick glance (then again, while the long term trend is consistently upward, the annual trend is so variable, that it's likely foolish on my part to suggest a change in trend based on the most recent periods of increase which have only been occurring for less than 12 months).

https://climate.nasa.gov/vital-signs/sea-level/

The 2/27/18 PNAS report that sea level rise was accelerating barely seemed to get any notice (of  course, how could it compete with a story about hush money paid to a porn star to keep quiet about her decade ago one-night stand with Trump)
http://www.pnas.org/content/115/9/2022 (http://www.pnas.org/content/115/9/2022)
https://insideclimatenews.org/news/11022018/sea-level-rise-accelerating-satellite-study-coastal-flood-risk-antarctica-oceans
 (https://insideclimatenews.org/news/11022018/sea-level-rise-accelerating-satellite-study-coastal-flood-risk-antarctica-oceans)

How much does sea level have to rise before there is a crash in US and worldwide coastal real estate prices? The 3.2 mm per annual rise does not seem to be causing much fear. How much does the rate of increase have to accelerate before real estate buyers notice the threat? And how many people have to be displaced before serious action is taken to limit sea level rise?

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 21, 2018, 01:11:29 PM
Will blockchain technology deliver beneficial AI for the masses?

Title: "This Startup Is Dreaming of a Global Brain on Blockchain"

https://singularityhub.com/2018/02/11/this-startup-is-dreaming-of-a-global-brain-on-blockchain/#sm.0001g8x1b9kx4fi6u8p1gt35shyja

Extract: "Ben Goertzel, a leading AI researcher, thinks the key to steering us towards a future in which AI is the best thing to happen to humanity is to develop it in an open, democratic, distributed way using blockchain—which is why he’s developing SingularityNET.

SingularityNET is a decentralized platform for AI. Goertzel and his team aim to build a blockchain-based infrastructure to enable various kinds of AI algorithms—from image recognition to natural language processing—to flexibly interact with one another in real time. The system will also be a way to track which algorithms are being used and to compensate developers accordingly.

Instead of humans manually stringing together algorithms, as the system develops, they’ll be able to communicate data and coordinate processing with one another. In the system’s initial incarnation, a user who has a task to complete using AI, training a robot to dance, for example, would send that task to the system, which would then parcel it out to various algorithms specializing in the different skills required to complete the task. The developers whose algorithms are used to complete the task will be compensated by the system with the tokens the user spends to get the task completed."

See also:

https://singularitynet.io/

Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on April 27, 2018, 06:42:58 PM
Quantum computing is now cooking with ultracold gas condensates as discussed in the three linked references.  This represents a great leap forward in quantum computing technology:

Karsten Lange, et al. (27 Apr 2018), "Entanglement between two spatially separated atomic modes", Science, Vol. 360, Issue 6387, pp. 416-418, DOI: 10.1126/science.aao2035

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/360/6387/416

Abstract: "Modern quantum technologies in the fields of quantum computing, quantum simulation, and quantum metrology require the creation and control of large ensembles of entangled particles. In ultracold ensembles of neutral atoms, nonclassical states have been generated with mutual entanglement among thousands of particles. The entanglement generation relies on the fundamental particle-exchange symmetry in ensembles of identical particles, which lacks the standard notion of entanglement between clearly definable subsystems. Here, we present the generation of entanglement between two spatially separated clouds by splitting an ensemble of ultracold identical particles prepared in a twin Fock state. Because the clouds can be addressed individually, our experiments open a path to exploit the available entangled states of indistinguishable particles for quantum information applications."

&

Philipp Kunkel, et al. (27 Apr 2018), "Spatially distributed multipartite entanglement enables EPR steering of atomic clouds", Science, Vol. 360, Issue 6387, pp. 413-416, DOI: 10.1126/science.aao2254

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/360/6387/413

Abstract: "A key resource for distributed quantum-enhanced protocols is entanglement between spatially separated modes. However, the robust generation and detection of entanglement between spatially separated regions of an ultracold atomic system remain a challenge. We used spin mixing in a tightly confined Bose-Einstein condensate to generate an entangled state of indistinguishable particles in a single spatial mode. We show experimentally that this entanglement can be spatially distributed by self-similar expansion of the atomic cloud. We used spatially resolved spin read-out to reveal a particularly strong form of quantum correlations known as Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen (EPR) steering between distinct parts of the expanded cloud. Based on the strength of EPR steering, we constructed a witness, which confirmed genuine 5-partite entanglement."

&

Matteo Fadel, et al. (27 Apr 2018), "Spatial entanglement patterns and Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen steering in Bose-Einstein condensates", Science, Vol. 360, Issue 6387, pp. 409-413, DOI: 10.1126/science.aao1850

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/360/6387/409

Abstract: "Many-particle entanglement is a fundamental concept of quantum physics that still presents conceptual challenges. Although nonclassical states of atomic ensembles were used to enhance measurement precision in quantum metrology, the notion of entanglement in these systems was debated because the correlations among the indistinguishable atoms were witnessed by collective measurements only. Here, we use high-resolution imaging to directly measure the spin correlations between spatially separated parts of a spin-squeezed Bose-Einstein condensate. We observe entanglement that is strong enough for Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen steering: We can predict measurement outcomes for noncommuting observables in one spatial region on the basis of corresponding measurements in another region with an inferred uncertainty product below the Heisenberg uncertainty bound. This method could be exploited for entanglement-enhanced imaging of electromagnetic field distributions and quantum information tasks."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 04, 2018, 07:00:12 PM
If this keeps up then some day in the next few decades we may well have fast rail service from Tokyo to London:

Title: "A Geopolitically Genius Plan to Modernize North Korea's Trains"

https://www.citylab.com/transportation/2018/05/inter-korean-summit-rail-project/559652/

Extract: "Of course, with anything concerning North Korea, grand hopes must be accompanied by maximal caution. North Korea is where the best-laid plans go to wither and die. A version of the inter-Korean railway plan has existed for a while; the two Koreas even had a test run for the rail link in May 2007, having two trains cross the demilitarized zone on two spots. Further development stalled, however, because of the overall deterioration of the relationship between the two nations.

Yet there are reasons to be cautiously optimistic this time around. For starters, both South and North Korea specifically want this project. It’s also consistent with what their neighboring countries want as well. China is raring to begin the One Belt One Road Initiative, a massive infrastructure project that would enhance the physical connection between Europe and Asia. The inter-Korean railway could serve as the eastern extension, creating the overland connection between South Korea and the prosperous Chinese cities across the Yellow Sea from the Korean Peninsula, including Beijing and Shanghai.

A stable inter-Korean railway may also motivate Japan to finally begin working on the Korea-Japan undersea tunnel, a project that had been under discussion since the 1980s. If built, it would be the longest undersea tunnel in the world, more than four times the length of the Channel Tunnel between France and the United Kingdom.  According to the South Korean government, the inter-Korean railway plan caught the attention of both the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank and the Asian Development Bank—respectively led by China and Japan, with many other member nations—indicating international support for the inter-Korean railway plan."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 04, 2018, 07:46:26 PM
The first linked op/ed piece states that capitalism is at fault for our unsustainable world, as these 'invisible hand' of capitalism is as stupid as the 'invisible hand' of evolution that created the behavior of lemmings.  The invisible hand of evolution not only created lemming behavior but also the potential for enlightened human behavior; however, the Buddha found that realizing the human potential for enlightenment requires following a 'middle path'.  Therefore, I provide the second linked article about how a 'new invisible hand' (based on updated evolutionary theories) can allow technocrats to nudge modern socio-economic systems from global capitalism to a more sustain socio-economic system by following a middle path between laisse faire and central planning:

Title: "The Climate Crisis? It’s Capitalism, Stupid"

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/20/opinion/climate-capitalism-crisis.html

Extract: "The real culprit of the climate crisis is not any particular form of consumption, production or regulation but rather the very way in which we globally produce, which is for profit rather than for sustainability. So long as this order is in place, the crisis will continue and, given its progressive nature, worsen. This is a hard fact to confront. But averting our eyes from a seemingly intractable problem does not make it any less a problem. It should be stated plainly: It’s capitalism that is at fault."

The claim here is not that unintelligent people do not do unintelligent things, but rather that the overwhelming unintelligence involved in keeping the engines of production roaring when they are making the planet increasingly uninhabitable cannot be pinned on specific people. It is the system as a whole that is at issue, and every time we pick out bumbling morons to lament or fresh-faced geniuses to praise is a missed opportunity to see plainly the necessity of structural change.

Put differently, the hope that we can empower intelligent people to positions where they can design the perfect set of regulations, or that we can rely on scientists to take the carbon out of the atmosphere and engineer sources of renewable energy, serves to cover over the simple fact that the work of saving the planet is political, not technical. We have a much better chance of making it past the 22nd century if environmental regulations are designed by a team of people with no formal education in a democratic socialist society than we do if they are made by a team of the most esteemed scientific luminaries in a capitalist society. The intelligence of the brightest people around is no match for the rampant stupidity of capitalism.

&
Title: "Why New Economics Needs a New Invisible Hand"

http://evonomics.com/the-new-invisible-hand-david-sloan-wilson/

Extract: "The New Invisible Hand suggests the existence of a middle path.

The old concept pretends that the pursuit of individual or corporate self-interest robustly benefits the common good, as if “led by an invisible hand” in the words of Adam Smith. This is also the essence of the term “laissez-faire”, which is French for “leave it alone”. Nobody believes that an economy can truly be a free for all—certainly not Adam Smith, who invoked his metaphor only three times in the entire corpus of his work. A fuller reading reveals that he was amply aware of the need to regulate economies. Nevertheless, those who have made the invisible hand their central metaphor regard laissez faire as by far the better path to take than its alternative—centralized planning.

I am not the first person to declare this notion of the invisible hand dead, but my grounds for doing so are somewhat novel. Evolutionary theory makes it crystal clear that the unregulated pursuit of self-interest is often toxic for the common good. This conclusion becomes especially strong when we conceptualize self-interest in relative rather than absolute terms, a distinction that separates much evolutionary thinking from much economic thinking. When we absorb the fact that “life is graded on a curve” as the evolutionary economist Robert Frank puts it, then we can see that nearly all cooperative efforts require time, energy, and risk on the part of the cooperative individuals that place them at a relative disadvantage compared to less cooperative individuals within the same group.

The same theory that delivers the death stroke to the old concept of the invisible hand also provides a strong foundation for the new one. The two elements of the invisible hand metaphor are: 1) A social system works well; 2) without its members having the welfare of the system in mind. Nature is replete with examples, such as eusocial insect colonies and multicellular organisms as societies of cells. The members of these societies work harmoniously for the common good without even having minds in the human sense of the word. In each case, the first element of the invisible hand metaphor is satisfied because the society is the primary unit of selection—colony-level selection in the case of eusocial insects and organism-level selection in the case of multicellular organisms. The second element is satisfied because higher-level selection winnowed a small set of lower-level behaviors that contribute to the common good from the much larger set of lower-level behaviors that would disrupt the common good. In short, higher-level selection is the invisible hand. When it doesn’t occur, then disruptive forms of selection among individuals within groups take over, such as cancers in multicellular organisms and varying forms of cheating behaviors in eusocial insect colonies.

One of the great discoveries of evolutionary science during the last few decades is that this theoretical framework, called multilevel selection theory, can be applied to the evolution of our own species–including our genetic evolution primarily at the scale of small groups, our cultural evolution at successively larger scales during the last 10,000 years, and the rapid changes swirling all around us today that we are trying to influence with our policy decisions.

The main take-home message is easy for anyone to understand. We must learn to function in two capacities: As designers of large-scale social systems and as participants in the social systems that we design. As participants, we don’t need to have the welfare of the whole system in mind, but as designers we do. There is no way around it. Anything short will result in social dysfunction.

This is a definitive refutation of laissez-faire as a perspective for formulating policy, but it is not an endorsement of centralized planning. Indeed, the main import of the New Invisible Hand is to suggest the existence of a middle path, a way to design social systems that is itself evolutionary and iterative, resulting in regulatory processes that look like laissez-faire, even though they never would have come into existence on their own.

In short, the middle path between laissez-faire and centralized planning has been discovered many times, as might be expected from a cultural evolutionary perspective—but that isn’t good enough. Each discovery originates as a cultural “mutation’, often by happenstance, and spreads on the basis of its success to a degree, but then remains confined within certain cultural boundaries and is largely unknown outside its borders—somewhat like the geographical distribution of a biological species. What’s needed is a way to transcend these cultural boundaries so that all of the examples can be related to each other and understood from a unified theoretical perspective provided by a combination of evolutionary theory and complex systems theory."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 10, 2018, 09:46:05 PM
Globalization going to continue growing, no matter what anyone says, so it is good to think about ways to 'make it more egalitarian, fair and just', as discussed in the linked article:

Title: "Does globalization have to mean massive inequality? Maybe not — there’s a better way"

https://www.salon.com/2018/05/10/does-globalization-have-to-mean-massive-inequality-maybe-not-theres-a-better-way/

Extract: "Despite widespread backlash, globalization is unstoppable. Now we must make it more egalitarian, fair and just"
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 12, 2018, 12:25:17 AM
More evolutionary lessons for our rapidly changing socio-economic situation:

Title: "The Business World Needs Multilevel Selection (MLS) Theory" by David Sloan Wilson

https://evolution-institute.org/the-business-world-needs-multilevel-selection-theory/

Extract: "Multilevel Selection (MLS) Theory can create order out of this chaos. It was developed for the study of social behaviors in non-human species but it is equally relevant to the cultural design of human groups, including but not restricted to business corporations.  It is based on the following principles, which are so elementary that they are unlikely to be wrong.
1.   Evolution is based on relative fitness. It doesn’t matter how well one survives and reproduces in absolute terms; only in comparison to others in the vicinity. As the economist Robert Frank puts it in his book The Darwin Economy: Liberty, Competition, and the Common Good, life is graded on a curve.
2.   The social behaviors that maximize relative fitness within a group tend to undermine the welfare of the group. This is the opposite of the metaphor of the invisible hand.
3.   Social behaviors that are “for the good of the group” might be selectively disadvantageous within the group, but they can be highly advantageous in betweengroup competition.


MLS theory makes it crystal clear that unless competition is appropriately structured and refereed, it can do a lot more harm than good. To make matters more complex, the logic of MLS theory applies to all levels of a multi-tier hierarchy, including the tiers of a single hierarchically organized corporation. What’s good for a single employee can be bad for her unit. What’s good for her unit can be bad for other units, and so on, all the way up to what’s good for the corporation being bad for the global economy and environment.

The idea that competition among firms results in the best replacing the worst would be called “naïve group selection” by an evolutionary biologist—as if selection operates only at the level of firms. Evolutionary biologists went beyond naïve group selection decades ago and their progress can be a tremendous source of insight to the business world."

See also:

https://new.evolution-institute.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/09/tvol-biz-publication-1.pdf
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 14, 2018, 10:30:33 PM
The linked reference provides discussion about the use of Robustness Metrics w.r.t. climate change:

C. McPhail, et al. (08 January 2018), "Robustness Metrics: How Are They Calculated, When Should They Be Used and Why Do They Give Different Results?", Earth's Future, https://doi.org/10.1002/2017EF000649

https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/2017EF000649

Abstract: "Robustness is being used increasingly for decision analysis in relation to deep uncertainty and many metrics have been proposed for its quantification. Recent studies have shown that the application of different robustness metrics can result in different rankings of decision alternatives, but there has been little discussion of what potential causes for this might be. To shed some light on this issue, we present a unifying framework for the calculation of robustness metrics, which assists with understanding how robustness metrics work, when they should be used, and why they sometimes disagree. The framework categorizes the suitability of metrics to a decision‐maker based on (1) the decision‐context (i.e., the suitability of using absolute performance or regret), (2) the decision‐maker's preferred level of risk aversion, and (3) the decision‐maker's preference toward maximizing performance, minimizing variance, or some higher‐order moment. This article also introduces a conceptual framework describing when relative robustness values of decision alternatives obtained using different metrics are likely to agree and disagree. This is used as a measure of how “stable” the ranking of decision alternatives is when determined using different robustness metrics. The framework is tested on three case studies, including water supply augmentation in Adelaide, Australia, the operation of a multipurpose regulated lake in Italy, and flood protection for a hypothetical river based on a reach of the river Rhine in the Netherlands. The proposed conceptual framework is confirmed by the case study results, providing insight into the reasons for disagreements between rankings obtained using different robustness metrics."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on May 18, 2018, 04:59:35 PM
I hope that you are practicing your holistic thinking, because the future is coming faster than most people realize:

Title: "Quantum computing edges toward mainstream"

https://www.axios.com/quantum-computing-edges-toward-mainstream-dfd65971-1a41-4b83-a410-9f9c8fb965e6.html

Extract: "Quantum computing will enter the mainstream faster than most of us realize, a panel of experts told a San Francisco crowd earlier this week — with some important real-world applications emerging within five years.

"Within 5 years, we're going to see something that makes everyone look up and say, 'Wow, how is this possible?'" said Arvind Krishna, director of research at IBM, at a Tuesday event hosted by the Churchill Club."
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 06, 2018, 04:05:26 AM
Here are interesting discussions that also touch on the topic of adapting to the anthropocene:

Title: "Nationalism vs. globalism: the new political divide | Yuval Noah Harari"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=szt7f5NmE9E

&

Title: "How Thomas Friedman and Yuval Noah Harari Think About The Future of Humanity"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5chp-PRYq-w
Title: Re: Adapting to the Anthropocene
Post by: AbruptSLR on August 13, 2018, 02:30:14 AM
Yuval Noah Harari summarizes the obvious about the coming of 'Digital Dictatorships':

Title: "HUJI Talks - BOG 2018 - Professor Yuval Noah Harari"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCocGmEto78

Extract: "Hacking human beings... Digital dictatorships... A biological, technological reality? Do we have the necessary computing power and biological insight? Will algorithms know us better than we know ourselves?"

Edit, see also Reply #366
&

Title: "Elizabeth Economy: The Future of Xi Jinping's China"