Organic Singularity?

16 August 2012

About a month ago I read… ScienceProgress.org::Could the Organic Singularity Occur Prior to Kurzweil’s Technological Singularity? This was the first time I had encountered the idea of an organic singularity.

We own some stock in Billerica, MA-based Bruker Corp. (nasdaq: BRKR). In a nutshell, Bruker is a maker of scientific and technical instruments and I don’t understand most of products.

The following is copied from a Bruker press release on 14 August 02012.

Organic photoelectric materials are already finding large markets as OLEDs (Organic Light Emitting Diodes) in mobile device displays. There is also interesting research being conducted on OPV (Organic PhotoVoltaic) devices,” said Mark R. Munch, Ph.D., President of Bruker Nano Surfaces Division. “Our new pcAFM accessory transforms the Dimension Icon AFM into a solution for dedicated nanoscale organic photoelectric material research.”

I don’t know what it all means, but the word organic keeps popping up with more frequency these days.


Ismail & Templeton Say “Be Prepared for Exponential Times”

3 July 2012

Be Prepared for Exponential Times – Salim Ismail & Brad Templeton – DLD Moscow 2012

I’ve been a fan of Brad Templeton for a long time, but I watched only Salim Ismail’s part of “Be Prepared for Exponential Times” presentation. I mined the following quotes because I strongly agree with them.

All of our societal structures evolved in a time when we were local in a linear world. Today we’re global and in an exponential world. — Salim Ismail

Society is not ready for the pace of change the technology is bringing. — Salim Ismail

Once you take any domain and discipline and ground it in information properties it goes into an exponential growth path. And then nothing will shake it off that path after that. — Salim Ismail

Be Prepared for Exponential Times – Salim Ismail & Brad Templeton – DLD Moscow 2012


It’s Possible a Technological Singularity is Approaching

18 June 2012

In Gutenberg the Geek Jeff Jarvis wrote: “Our accepted wisdom today is that the change we are experiencing is pushing us forward at lightening speed. But I’m coming to wonder whether, instead, it is happening very slowly. That is, we are only at the bare beginning of the change we will undergo and we cannot fathom its full shape and extent.” I’ve come to wonder this also and it makes me think of the approaching technological Singularity.

Speaking of the Singularity… Coming Summer 2012: The Singularity Is Near Movie Trailer


Human Genome; Autonomous Vehicles; Supercomputing; SpaceX

1 June 2012

From a sociopolitical perspective the 21st century has been a dud, but ignoring that…

Human Genome Project completed in 02003; DARPA Grand Challenge successfully met in 02005; DARPA Urban Challenge successfully met in 02007; TOP500 top supercomputer tops petaflops in 02008; IBM’s Watson wins Jeopardy! in 02011; SpaceX successfully completes its first mission in 02012.

[update::02012.06.01] This posting should have included the following… Yesterday (02012.05.31) the front page of the Arizona Republic had the following headline: “U.S. broadening cyberwar strategy”. Today the New York Times has a news story titled “Obama Order Sped Up Wave of Cyberattacks Against Iran”. My gut tells me cyberwarfare, which I think is in progress, is going to be uglier than ugly.


Many Forms of Divides

14 May 2012

This posting is what I’ll call a “dropping” (i.e. it’s a topic that I want to write more about when time permits).

I’ve spent my entire adult life aware of the “Digital Divide.” The digital divide is a product of numerous factors and one of the factors is “affordability.” For the last 15 years I’ve learned about the “Educational Divide.” The education divide is a product of numerous factors and one of those factors is “affordability.” These days I’m starting to be concerned about a “Future Divide.” It, too, is going to be a multivariate function and one of the variables is going to be “affordability.” It’s possible the technological singularity will result in a huge “Future Divide.”


Learning About the Future From 24 February To 20 April

22 April 2012

On 20 April 02012 I gave my “Learning About the Future in 50 Minutes” for a second time. I thought it went well, but only ten people were in attendance. I gave this talk for the first time 56 days earlier on 24 February 02012. I created a web page to capture what I’ve been learning over the span of the last 56 days.

56 Days Since My First “Learning About the Future in 50 Minutes” Talk


What If I Live To 93?

8 April 2012

I’ve enjoyed “60 Minutes” for more than half of my life and today (8 April 02012) I learned that Mike Wallace had died at age 93. I categorize 93 as “old”, and it’s nice that Mike Wallace lived a long life.

I was 54 on 8 April 02012. Hmm… Reverse the digits of Mike Wallace’s death age (digits of 93 reversed is 39) and add that number to my age (54) and you get Mike Wallace’s death age (93 = 39 + 54).

39 years is a long time. I’ll turn 93 in the year 02050. I think it’s possible that if I’m alive in 02050, then I could end up being alive in the years 02150, 02250, 02350, and so on.

39 years of SCREAM (Science, Computing, Robotics, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) enabled by Infinite Computing. I don’t have enough imagination to image what the info-, bio-, nano-, robo- advances are going to be over the span of the next 39 years.

These days I consider 93 an “old” age, but 39 years from now it’s possible I’ll consider 93 a “young” age.


KKK (Kapor, Kurzweil, Kay)

26 August 2010

02010.08.26: Day two of the Introduction to Computer Science class.

[Note: This posting uses 5-digit years.]

Rewind three weeks…

02010.08.03 at 2:10pm @mkapor tweeted:

I’m grouchy that so few people (except us old-timers) have even heard of Ted Nelson http://bit.ly/cGbsWC (Wikipedia bio)

Observe: Mitch Kapor hyperlinked into the Wikipedia.

02010:08.03 at 2:11pm @mkapor tweeted:

All of the web is in essence a pale shadow of just one of Ted Nelson’s dreams. Now do I have your attention?

Hmm… Who is Mitch Kapor?

2010.08.03 at 2:15pm @nanofoo in reply to @mkapor:

I’m going to make sure my CS1 students learn a bit about Ted Nelson this fall. They’ll come in knowing Gates & Jobs, but not Nelson.

@nanofoo never got reply from @mkapor, but @rossk did…

02010.08.03 at 2:48pm @rossk in reply to @mkapor:

where should the Nelson-newbie start?

02010.08.03 at 8:07pm@mkapor in reply to @rossk

Read “Computer Lib” by Nelson. Also see the Wired article on him for a dissenting view

Mitch Kapor did not provide his followers with hyperlinks, but here they are: Computer Lib/Dream Machine (dot-pdf) and Wired.com: The Curse of Xanadu


This posting uses 5-digit years and that is because I am a member of the Long Now Foundation. [Follow on Twitter @longnow.]

In 02002, Mitch Kapor made the first Long Bet (By 02029 no computer – or “machine intelligence” – will have passed the Turing Test.) with Ray Kurzweil. Hmm… Who is Ray Kurzweil? [Follow on Twitter @KurzweilAINews.]

02010.08.25 at 12:00pm @compufoo tweeted:

I agree with Ray Kurzweil that “exponential growth is the reality of information technology.” #future

I learned a lot from reading reading Ray Kurzweil’s The Singularity is Near.

In a nutshell, Kapor and Kurzweil are futurists whose last names start with the letter ‘K’. There another futurist whose last name starts with the letter ‘K’ and that is Alan Kay. In the Introduction to Computer Science we use the C++ programming language. C++ supports object oriented programming (OOP) and Alan Kay is considered one of the fathers of OOP.

Alan Kay was once quoted saying: “The best way to predict the future is to invent it.”

The following picture of the Foundation Building at Arizona State University was taken during early August of 02010.

"The best way to predict the future is to invent it." -- Alan Kay

Does the future need us?

28 December 2009

Singularity Hub’s A Review Of The Best Robots of 2009 reaffirms my belief that all high school students should be required to read, ponder and discuss Bill Joy’s essay Why the future doesn’t need us.

It might be a serious error to ignore Bill Joy’s opinion.

Our most powerful 21st-century technologies – robotics, genetic engineering, and nanotech – are threatening to make humans an endangered species.

As 02009 nears an end, I continue to claim that we have not yet entered the Age of Robotics, but Singuarlity Hub’s robot review provides evidence that the Robotics Age is rapidly approaching.


Promoting long-term thinking

19 November 2009

I posted the following comment in response to an AzCentral.com posting by editorial writer Joanna Allhands titled “The impact of long-term forecasts.

“30-year economic forecast”… Hee-haw.

“Recovery from this recession could take decades”… I don’t know how you define “recovery,” but I keep “seeing” 02013 as being a major breakout year. In other words, the “recovery” will take decades if we assume one-year decades (and one-decade centuries). Note: I use 5-digit years for a reason. [visit LongNow.org and subscribe to the SingularityU YouTube channel]

Want to get majorily depressed? Investigate “lump of labor.” We’re not yet in the Robotics Age; consequently, this recession’s “recovery” is giving us insight into the “lump of labor” problem that is awaiting us. The next recession has the potential to make this recession look like good times. In a nutshell: We need to start electing 21st century leaders rather than 20th century political dinosaurs.