We can either choose to manage evolutionary processes or not, but evolutionary change will proceed regardless," Smith said, pointing to the recent rises of antibiotic-resistant diseases, pesticide-resistant insects and climate change-driven extinctions.
“Evolutionary change is happening around us all the time,” he said. “We have to decide whether we want to be part of it. Our inaction is having huge and detrimental impacts to biodiversity and medical progress. We need to use our knowledge to drive things in our favor.
Libraries are at the forefront of both access to information and, online, to academic publishing. The role of institutional repositories to enable access to what an institution produces is essential, and these repositories are increasingly open access. The Library of the 21st century, through its online repository/repositories, is transforming the role of academic publishing. Librarianship deals with the collection, organization, preservation, and dissemination of information resources. Enabling access is what librarians do.
But isn’t that what Amazon and Google also do? And at least Google is extending this with venturing into areas of knowledge creation and a wide array of other kinds of value creation as well…
Emitter and receiver subjects with non-invasive devices supporting, respectively, a brain-computer interface (BCI), based on EEG changes, driven by motor imagery (left) and a computer-brain interface (CBI) based on the reception of phosphenes…
An international team of neuroscientists and robotics engineers have demonstrated the first direct remote brain-to-brain communication between two humans located 5,000 miles away from each other and communicating via the Internet, as reported in a paper recently published in PLOS ONE (open access).
Digital Darwinism is a fate that threatens most organizations in almost every industry. Because of this, businesses not only have to compete for today but also for the unforeseeable future. Digital Darwinism is the phenomenon when technology and society evolve faster than an organization can adapt. There are many reasons for this of course. Every fabric of a company is strained due to internal and external influences. The challenge lies amongst the very leaders running the show today. Their mission and the processes and systems they support today may already be working against them.This isn’t a technology problem, it is a leadership problem. The chiefs of our villages must realize that the situation is so different that they have to consult the medicine men in order to identify a new path, a new way of life.
Editor’s note: Nick Bostrom is professor and director of the Future of Humanity Institute at the Oxford Martin School at Oxford University. He is the author of “Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies” (OUP). The opinions expressed in thi…
The next stop from human level intelligence, just a short distance farther along the tracks, is machine superintelligence. The train might not even decelerate at Humanville Station: It is likely instead to swoosh right past.This brings us to what I think may well be the most important task of our time. If there will eventually be an “intelligence explosion,” how exactly can we set up the initial conditions so as to achieve an outcome that is survivable and beneficial to existing persons?
The concerns of anti-GMO activists would be addressed better by offering support to an alternative in the form of “do-it-yourself” biotechnology, rather than rejecting sciences and industries that are already destined to be a fundamental part of humanity’s future. What needs to be made is a case for popular technology, in hope that we can reject the portrayal of all advanced technology as an ally of powerful states and corporations and instead unlock its future as a means of liberation from global exploitation and scarcity.
I agree that the arguments tend to be a mix of the effects of the greedy or evil corporations and the dangers of GMO. But there is an important point here about when we have opened the bottle and let out the Gini we can’t put it back. We therefore have to approach the GMO issue with a strategy where we can minimize the negative effects for the future. Does that strategy include supporting the biotech hacking movement? Maybe…
A family-medicine doctor recent saw a 13-year-old with a weird, unidentifiable rash. It wasn’t itchy or painful, and the teenage boy hadn’t traveled anywhere recently. So the the doctor did what any modern physician would do: he took a photo and…
South Korea blocks all Facebook games as part of a government crackdown
South Korea is enforcing a new game-rating system, and Facebook games won’t work unless they go through the regulatory process to get an official approval from the government. http://goo.gl/elDFm9 #Playistic
[Algorithms and heuristics] are very important in cybernetics, for in dealing with unthinkable systems it is normally impossible to give a full specification of a goal, and therefore impossible to prescribe an algorithm. But it is not usually too difficult to prescribe a class of goals, so that moving in some general description will leave you better off (by some definite criterion) than you were before. To think in terms of heuristics rather than algorithms is at once a way of coping with proliferating variety. Instead of trying to organize it in full detail, you organize it only somewhat; you then ride on the dynamics of the system in the direction you want to go.
These two techniques for organizing control in a system of proliferating variety are really rather dissimilar. The strange thing is that we tend to live our lives by heuristics, and to try and control them by algorithms. Our general endeavor is to survive, yet we specify in detail (‘catch the 8:45 train’, ‘ask for a raise’) how to get to this unspecified and unspecifiable goal. We certainly need these algorithms, in order to live coherently; but we also need heuristics — and we are rarely conscious of them. This is because our education is planned around detailed analysis: we do not (we learn) really understand things unless we can specify their infrastructure. The point came up before in the discussion of transfer functions, and now it comes up again in connection with goals. […] Birds evolved from reptiles, it seems. Did a representative body of lizards pass a resolution to learn to fly? If so, by what means could the lizards have organized their genetic variety to grow wings? One has only to say such things to recognize them as ridiculous — but the birds are flying this evening outside my window. This is because heuristics work while we are still sucking the pencil which would like to prescribe an algorithm.