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Showing posts from 2012

Functionality stuffed into procedures...

The funny thing about "functional programming" to me is that when you compartmentalize the structure of your code in any language and do it very will naturally embrace a modular paradigm that combines functional and procedural pockets.

In OO code for example, you often write procedural chunks inside atomic methods which you then invoke in a functional way against the method that one writes the code in and attaches to a given class. This is at the class programming stage.

The functional aspect to the development of OO code then comes into place when the client programmers then take the created classes and put their methods and external program attributes together to create a highly (hopefully) function frame work for the solution of a general problem scope for the  given problem at hand.

For example, if you want to write a class that allows you to perform a transformation of a geometrical object of the screen, you'd first create functional encapsulated represe…

Simulating social for the heck of silly.

In a recent article:

"At $16,000 each, the Beam isn't cheap. But Suitable Technologies says it was designed with features that make "pilots" and "locals" feel the remote worker is physically in the room: powerful speakers, highly sensitive microphones and robust wireless connectivity. The company began shipping Beams last month, mostly to tech companies with widely dispersed engineering teams, officials said. "Being there in person is really complicated—commuting there, flying there, all the different ways people have to get there. Beam allows you to be there without all that hassle," said CEO Scott Hassan, beaming in from his office at Willow Garage in nearby Menlo Park."

-- My wager, and the reason I invented Action Oriented Workflow is that systems like this are simply continuing the inefficiency of the old paradigm of stateful work processes.

This is silly, $16,000 per unit to try and simulate a social element that for many workers is no…

From differential solution set to Fractal appearance set.

I've given some thought to the recent research published by a team of Scientists that the large scale structure of the Universe looks a lot like the small scale structure of neuronal connections and like the planet scale structure of the connections between computers on the internet.

Here is my explanation for why this is so (yes, this is the type of conversation I prefer to have to the detriment of my dating life) it's simple. From exploration of the class of equations known as differential equations we know that defining the initial conditions of an equation gives rise to a set of solutions for those initial conditions that range often over continuous space. Even if the solutions are not continuous the variation in variables (known as the order of the equation) can be infinite, leading to an open set of possible solutions to the initial equation.

Thus for sufficiently chosen initial conditions any arbitrary solution can be identified for any given equation. It turns out tha…

Simulated Universe, suffers same problem as God.

Consider this:

Assuming that we are in a simulation of the ancestry of beings in another Universe, the question of the finite evolution of the Universe that those beings inhabits still subjects them to what we know about how the Universe is constructed no?

Would they not also be constrained by the forces of nature to design and build their simulation (us) and therefor aren't they also embedded and constrained as well.

Now, let's assume that they are a top level lifeform, meaning they themselves were NOT created as part of another Universes creation event...can we explore (either rigorously or by logic) whether or not this assertion is probable??

Is it possible that they are a top level being and in fact what is the likelihood of top level beings being the creators of our Universe.

I think if we accept the previous hypothesis, that all beings the simulated and the simulators are constrained by the limits of a common physics then we must conclude that if the variation of univer…

Why do we grieve?

It's very important first to understand that evolutionary processes do not have a causative role in all evolved behaviors or traits. Often species responses to various stimuli are simply that responses to either stimuli in presence or absence and not a behavior that has evolutionary causation.

Grief is a perfect example of such a response. It is a reaction to the end of a continuous stream of signals that otherwise would come from an individuals (or items) presence and represents a momentary set of *shocks* at the re-realization at the loss when need presents.

"Need" can be as simple as the desire to talk to a person who is gone or hear their laughter. Unlike the things we surround ourselves with...which we experience sensorially only in a limited band of ways (and thus impress networks in our brain in an equally limited way)

The influence of individuals we've been close to on our brain networks is extensive...especially when those histories go back to childhood...w…

Loves new meaning...

Often I've had conversation with those in long term relationships who have through the years grown apart as a red hot passion reduced to burn as no more than a dull ember. I've often thought to myself as some one who has been in Love of deep intensity but as of now is free of those motivations, that passion and Love as we define them today will soon be as extinct as Short Faced Bear.  These independent qualities are in a slow process of revolution as we have both evolved as a primate species and through the creation of new modes of social organization, methods for acquiring the necessary items of survival and success and finding optimal modes for living with one another in the mostly monogamous relationships that we engage in.

The revolution is being accelerated by an additional recent factor about our ability to survive on this planet that is due to our ability now to directly modulate the genetic information of living beings without risk of cancer. This discovery of only the…

If memory is hierarchical...what builds the hierarchy??

I've been steeped in though regarding the causative biological truths that are behind the emergence of a cognitive agent in human and non human animals. In my past postings I've explored the idea that consciousness emerges from the dynamic inter play of memories stored in regions roughly allocated to processing the inputs from sensations across the human sensory landscape. This grossly is comprised by the 5 senses, olfaction, audition, visual sensation, gustatory sense, somatosensory sensation...(senses of balance and acceleration are also senses but not usually grouped with the above).

The problem with trying to recreate a dynamic cognitive agent lies not just in simply reproducing how the brain stores away the sensory information gathered from the respective sensory organs and relayed to the processing regions of the brain, it also includes the problem (for purposes of emerging these abilities de novo say via an artificial substrate) of needing to emerge the hierarchy of stor…

Post Super Mortal age hypothesis.

In previous posts on the subject of super mortality, I've prognosticated a bit on where the current technology can put us with regard to rejuvenation. In Love Post Supermortality I described a time where humans will be able to pay for and receive "intra genetic revigoration" that allows them to essentially age in reverse as their cellular repair mechanisms are restored system wide over a period of weeks or months.

This morning I was thinking about what happens when this type of treatment is widely available. What will be the average age to which people revert themselves if it is possible to chose an age? Will all chose to be as young as possible?

I propose that the age people will revert to the most can be inferred by taking a sufficient poll today of what age a person would chose to be reverted to if given the choice after they've become an adult. So the poll would include people aged from 25 and greater, and pose the question:

"If you could be reverted to t…

Objecting to stimulus...where subtleties are often lost...

A friend posted this article responding to an article in the Washington Post making a case for stimulus' effectiveness when applied during times of economic malaise in the US. I often see arguments along the lines of those indicated and wanted to put down a formal rebuttal of those points here:

A short bit on each of his objections :

1) On overstating degree of unanimity, this is an extremely subjective statement. He then goes on to point out a small sample of alternative reads from economists on the effectiveness of stimulus which only stand out because they are alternative reads. The consensus is that stimulus properly aimed and timed, consistently works. If there are opposing views on that statement they are in the minority...and stating that existence means that economists are not unanimous in their agreement as to the effectiveness of stimulus in obvious and not really relevant.

2) On ignoring public choice, he has three issues:
a) timing -- The big e…

Turtles all the way side ways...Godel and Turing point the way.

In a response to a friend on Facebook an interesting discussion on recent results that decidability of paths for particle transmission at the quantum scale is not assured similar to Turing's halting result in computer science and Godel's incompleteness in logic. This article was the original source of the discussion. Below I respond to comments made by my friend.

"Making harder the conundrum is that Godel's Incompleteness and Turing's halting only apply to countable sets, not continua."

-- Precisely, but the riddle being that an infinitely countable set is included in that definition...and it's possible to have infinite subsets of such sets! So discretization (of anything) seems to be fundamental to continuity...this truth of mathematics which stands apart from our present understanding of reality may point us in the direction of what reality really is about.

If the pattern continues to apply it may provide a way to test validity of multiverse theories. As y…

Objections to a non physical conclusion for consciousness.

In a paper recently published by Mark Muhlestein in the journal Cognitive Computation the following conclusion is made:

"In this computational framework, the distinction between a computation and the recording of a computation can be blurred arbitrarily, yet the physical implementation of the computation itself is unchanged. From this, we conclude that a purely computational account of consciousness is unsatisfactory."

This conclusion I agree with but for a few reasons not directly addressed in the paper which I elaborate on below.

On the objections, I'd say the ones that are most against this conclusion (that either computation is not all there is or consciousness is not what we think it is, roughly) are objections 3 and 4.

The clarion call that was ringing in my head as I read was the condition that a random number generator was being used. Conscious states are intimately dynamic systems that do not have deterministic response as asserted in the thought experiment because…

!Q, a descriptive relation for emerged cognitive Qualia spaces.

I suppose at some point there will be found to be a kind of Heisenberg uncertainty principle between scales of "mind" (which I believe are fractal and scale in complexity with more and more integrated sensory information) and integration algorithm which can be either analog or digital or range between. The analog to h-bar being the constant interaction landscape of cognitive possibilities (qualia) emerged by variation across the other two fundamental attributes.

So if I define scale of mind as  sM, and integration algorithm by iA and !Q as the invariant qualia landscape. relation will look something like

sM = !QiA or sM/iA =!Q


sM , will vary with dimension (orthogonal sensory inputs) as it does in living minds. Some biological minds integrate sensory dimensions humans can't experience...for example the dimension of electrostatic or magnetic field sensation that platypus and birds have respectively in addition to ones we can. This will modulate the perceptio…

Why Facebook over paid for Instagram by about 995 million dollars.

The announcement by Facebook that it was going to buy Instagram, recent hot startup darling of the tech media for their app. that allows people to take photos and post them to Facebook with applied image filters and chat about the photos was met by accolades showered on Zuckerberg for his wisdom.

The logic was that the fast growth of Instagram showed that it was a potential  threat for Facebook, particularly in the mobile space where the app. was growing so quickly. I greeted the announcement with a mixture of bemusement and disbelief. The main reasons were summarized in the thesis I put forward in this article from last year that I wrote to explain why Google created Google+ and why they didn't really care about stealing users from Facebook.

I also, in a blog post from several years ago, before there was even a Google+ or Google wave... stated this:

"The proof of all this consolidation is clear in the numbers, users spend incredible amounts of time on the Facebook network.…

How many cofactors for inducing expression of every cell type?

Another revolution in iPSC technology announced:

"Also known as iPS cells, these cells can become virtually any cell type in the human body -- just like embryonic stem cells. Then last year, Gladstone Senior Investigator Sheng Ding, PhD, announced that he had used a combination of small molecules and genetic factors to transform skin cells directly into neural stem cells. Today, Dr. Huang takes a new tack by using one genetic factor -- Sox2 -- to directly reprogram one cell type into another without reverting to the pluripotent state."

-- So the method invented by Yamanaka is now refined to rely only 1 cofactor and b) directly generate the target cell type from the source cell type (skin to neuron) without the stem like intermediate stage. 

It also mentions that oncogenic triggering was eliminated in their testing. Now comparative methods can be used to discover other types...the question Sox2 critical for all types? It may be that skin to neuron relies on Sox2 modul…

Using existing human and non human resources better is imperative.

A recent set of reports by the UN is casting a light on a serious problem that is accelerating with the growth of human population. In this article the problem is put plainly:

"warning that the world was already running out of cheap and sources of some essential materials such as oil, copper and gold."
Aside mild annoyance at their placing "oil" next to "copper and gold" as natural resources this report only underscores a trend that must attend a growing population that is moving collectively toward greater levels of affluence.

Those of you who've read my articles on the need to develop a Self Healing Infrastructure (SHI) are very familiar with my solution to enable us to  decouple economic growth from the resource utilization profile of the planet.

I do not believe in the long run of the next 30 years that it comes from providing jobs in a disorganized way. Rather, the efficient routing of work to be done to workers able and willing to do it is what i…

Future Workplace, hits and misses by Microsoft Research

 This articleon the future of the workforce gets some things right and many things wrong, here's my break down of their 10 item list.

1) It goes more than just measuring sentiment of emotional contentment at work, it's about enabling people to work when they are most energized to do so while still extracting optimal performance. Action Oriented Workflow is the first technology that does the latter of all the proposed solutions I've so far seen.

This is explained the maximize your value article:

2) The right information will find us, correct.  The UI for work is precisely where you want to be capturing all that "action" data about who is doing what on what business object and when. This allows deep insight into patterns of action that allows the ability to calculate in a predictive fashion how to route new work, again AOW and the extensions I added in the last few months is the only gene…

Amplify your voice on Facebook: Use Page and Group Tagging...

A recent email triggered my intentional utilization of a Facebook feature that I up to now had only used to alert friends to postings or comments they'd find interesting. That is, the friend tagging feature.

Friend tagging I've found is very convenient way to notify specific people within the context of a thread or discussion. I often use it to ask a friend (who many not have participated in the thread prior to the tag) what they  felt about it, this is great as it enables such friends to discover content I wish them to discover (so long as they scan their notifications that is).

The incident that triggered my novel use of the tags though involves a public company, LinkedIn. I received an email from LinkedIn indicating that I was eligible for a month of "free" premium service. I already suspected that there was going to be a credit card tie in at some point and sure enough after clicking through the offer and landing on a credit card page I closed the browser tab mi…

Humans surviving extinction? A little less optimistic....

Facebook friend Steve Zara and I engaged a discussion on a thread for this article:

in this facebook thread;

At one point we were questioning how it is that the near future may lead to attacks using genetically engineered agents by unstable individuals could potentially lead to human extinction. Steve responded at one point with this statement.

"The effort required to reach 100% gets exponentially higher."

Where he was referring to the effectiveness of any attack in reducing the human population to zero. The problem is.......

"The fallacy Steve,  is that you're assuming we've got one way at a time to climb that exponential curve of possibility to extinction...we don't. When I can sit at my GDE (genetic engineering development environment) and code together a pathogen that will kill let us say only 60% of humans, 70% of bees …

Engineers versus Programmers

I have found as more non formally trained people enter the coding space, the quality of code that results varies in an interesting way.

The formalities of learning to code in a structured course at University involve often strong focus on "correctness" and efficiency in the form of big O representations for the algorithms created.

Much less focus tends to be placed on what I'll call practical programming, which is the type of code that engineers (note I didn't use "programmers" on purpose) must learn to write.

Programmers are what Universities create, students that can take a defined development environment and within in write an algorithm for computing some sequence or traversing a tree or encoding and decoding a string. Efficiency and invariant rules are guiding development missions. Execution time for creating the solution is often a week or more depending on the professor and their style of teaching code and giving out problems. This type of coding is devo…