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Showing posts from July, 2014

Uber @ $200 billion ? ... possible.

Sounds almost crazy doesn't it? Not according to Google Ventures.

But then so did the idea of a lightbulb as an engine of productivity in 1879...yes that's just after Edison's year of work trying to make it practical (a device invented 60+ years earlier) paid off but still there was so much to do, there was no grid, no national or state or even city power system, in fact there were no efficient ways to generate and distribute electric power....there were motors and generators but for building a grid different approaches were required.

So creative engineers like Nikola Tesla (who was hired by Edison at one point) and others implemented AC generators using 3 phase designs and others contributed all manner of technology for defining a grid and transmitting power to remote locations. Camps formed between Edison's lighting company and Westinghouse , the electric wars began! In 1882 the first electrically powered building was turned on as fed by Edison's power generatio…

Salience Theory: What is pain?

This morning I awoke to find a message from a Facebook user (who I am not friends with as yet) regarding the subject of pain:

"Spekulation: Pain: When the parameters upholding consciousness leaves the definition space for those parameters. Tickeling and pleasure: When you travel along the rand of the definition space of consciousness. Of course, the definition space changes as the neuroplasticity redefines how singlas are processed, hence pain happens when signals deviate too quickly from the normal. Do you know of any hypothesis which comes close to the above?"

Immediately the problem in this definition can be identified by realizing that biologically pain is truly a spectrum of alerts and is not a critical threshold where some system goes from signal to noise as would be the case if it were a rapid deviation from "normal" (however that is defined).

Biologically the pain receptors are distributed across the body along with other sensors that can identify pressure. T…

Fermi silence may explain the "paradox".

The Fermi paradox has been a thorn in the side of cosmologists for nearly 70 years now , since Enrico Fermi proposed the conundrum of why it is in a Galaxy of so many possible planets that we haven't heard a peep from any near by or remote civilizations. I am a proponent of a combination of reasons 8 and 11 on this list of reasons why we don't hear anything as simply being that we are one of the earliest civilizations in the ensemble of civilizations that are extant in the Galaxy and have survived sufficient extinction events to even get to the point of producing radio waves coupled with the fact that the way we communicate now is likely not how advanced civilizations communicate, let me explain... In 100 short years we've gone from pumping Electro magnetic waves out into the space around us at very low power and thus the bulk of those signals are attenuated to *noise* threshold by the time they just get out our solar system (bye bye Voyager!)...this is important as it des…

Tyra's cloudy fashion crystal ball

Model and talk show host Tyra Banks had something to say on the future of fashion.

It at first reads as a bunch of cooky madness that betrays the depths of her ignorance across a range of fields and the developments in those fields particularly as it regards genetic engineering and biotechnology but she gets some things oddly at least in the same ball park as the reality that is unfolding if not any where near home plate ;). Here's a serious analysis of some of her list of predictions:

1> Just wrong, plastic surgery for some of the most common procedures today that are associated with fat and muscle deposition will actually go obsolete. Breast enhancement, Butt enhancement are among these...nose jobs will always be nose jobs for those that get them...there is nothing on the horizon to speed up or otherwise automate the procedure.

2> Kind of right! Hair growth will be something that will finally be genetically triggered or sped up or stopped (once those pathways are figured o…