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The Rental to Mortage Flip

In this extraordinarily difficult time for our planet and country the winds of change that blow for the near future are as potentially revolutionary as they are unpredictable. In my last post on some of the consequences that have fallen as a result of sudden quarantine induced shift of many knowledge workers to working from home, I explained how the necessity of dedicated work from home practices by many companies will reveal two things, first, companies will realize that they get a lot more work out of their workers. I stated this based on much earlier analysis that I conducted as part of my invention of the action oriented workflow paradigm nearly 20 years ago. Second, the office will be seen for  the excessive cost center that it is, it will see continued shifting to open plan and generalized usage with the end of cubicle farms and the available space will be drastically reduced as rental of floors in down town city centers is absurdly expensive. Offices will remain for executive f…
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Working From Home under the microscope

The some times serendipitous finger of chaos

Often it takes massive shocks to the collective social, economic and even geographic contexts of our living ecosystem for slowly smoldering truths to erupt as self evident. This was true with the emergence of the Nazi party from the crucible of a humiliated Germany post World War I coupled with depression era inflation and economic misery of the late 20's and early 30's.

This was true of the cataclysm of pathogen invasion that attended the crossing of species from the Asian continental mass to the American mass during the last inter-glacial and is true today with the sudden appearance of a global pandemic in city centers all of the world after being decanted from the full bottle of natures bounty of pathogens through human action.

The echoes of this black swan event as some call these unforeseen, unexpected and uncertain in scope shocks will reverberate in lives in a myriad of ways. Some immediately seen to be positive even as the …

CrispR enabled Cane Toad on the menu soon...

A recent study posted the results of the first sequencing of the Cane Toad, Bufo Marinus.

The article is interesting as it posits that one thing that can come from this is the ability to devise biological methods to control this Toad which is an invasive species any where outside of it's native region in South America.

I found this interesting as the methods focused on involve various viruses that would be used to kill the toads in order to control their populations...but this is myopic thinking. In this age of rapidly advancing and accurate gene editing in the form of Crispr associated editing complexes we can do something far more than just make the Toads susceptible to a viral infection. In fact, thinking about the safety of this approach it leaves open the possibility that the virus modified to kill the toads could also have off species effects which could be very detrimental to those species where deployed.

Instead we should consider one of the main factors that lead to the …

Waking Out: A proposal to emerging ethical super intelligence safely.

The zeitgeist of Science fiction is filled with stories that paint a dystopian tale of how human desires to build artificial intelligence can go wrong. From the programmed pathology of HAL in 2001 a space odyssey, to the immediately malevolent emergence of Skynet in The Terminator and later to the humans as energy stores for the advanced AI of the Matrix and today , to the rampage of "hosts" in the new HBO series Westworld.

These stories all have a common theme of probing what happens when our autonomous systems get a mind of their own to some degree and no longer obey their creators but how can we avoid these types of scenarios but still emerge generalized intelligence that will leverage their super intelligence with empathy and consideration the same that we expect from one another? This question is being answered in a way that is mostly hopeful that current methods used in machine learning and specifically deep learning will not emerge skynet or HAL.

I think this is the …

The End is Now.

So....the question begins....of how technological utopia could or could not save the world.

From my writings in this blog it should be clear that I am a fan of using technology to save us from ourselves. The focus on these efforts I've termed SHI, to describe the creation of a self healing technological fabric that frees human beings of all current mandatory forms of labor. This would included everything from identifying resource needs to extracting and processing raw resources into finished products and services.

The last 6 years has seen a revolution in the space of artificial intelligence now that machine learning models long thought to be inferior to formally modeled hard coded "intelligent" systems have taken the lead not only over those models for tasks like text reading and translation but also for things thought to be extremely hard or impossible for computers to "learn" even 10 years ago by many, such as image identification.

Now all that is in the pa…

Seeing into the human past, ancient North Africans were a divergent Near Eastern lineage

What a great day for paleo-anthropology!

Why?

A couple of months ago a paper published the results of dating of remains that showed that homo sapiens sapiens of modern anatomy were living in North Africa by 300,000 years ago...this pushed back the homo sapien emergence time line some what as these finds were older than the well known finds in East Africa thousands of miles away.

At the time, lazy and irresponsible conjecture on the matter supposed that the cradle of homo sapiens may not have been the rift valley but was instead north africa...this is nonsense for several reasons:

1) North Africa at the time did not present the complex combination of environmental factors that enabled the natural thriving of humans ...making it likely it was a place they moved to from some where else rather than evolved in situ.

2) Modern analysis of genetic lineages in Africa all center to lineages that are either in the east or southern regions of the continent...almost the furthest places you can b…

EctoSalience: The importance of salience in the womb to developing stable minds.

A recent advance in the ability to take immature female eggs to maturity in the petri dish prompted a deeper question regarding the connection of this advance to a plausible system for artificial wombs and ectogenesis of human beings and other organisms at some point in the future.

The advantages of such a system for research should be clear, Scientists would be able to cultivate and grow new embryos without the need of an actual living parent as as surrogate. A range of experiments focused on understanding the development of natal diseases could be investigated in real time through a highly monitored and controlled birth environment on a continuous basis.

In the social realm, a commercialized process for growing human embryos outside of a natural womb would allow women to forgo the risks of pregnancy entirely, freeing them from a natural source of social imbalance that has dogged their kinds since the dawn of our species.

However a possible negative aspect to such development must b…