Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Subconscious Demon

Sometimes we externalize what holds us back. However, since the Vienna Circle days, a Renaissance in Austria before and to some extent between the World Wars, we've had the alternative subconscious, or unconscious per Freud.  Universe, per Fuller, contained a subconscious demon, which kept his Synergetics enterprise from roaring ahead.

Not that said demon was the only obstacle.  As Applewhite chronicles in his Cosmic Fishing, Macmillan was wondering what level of risk it was taking in putting its company name behind such an unusual and difficult to categorize work.

"Subconscious demon" is the language Fuller used when explaining how he came to the T & E modules in Synergetics. He'd been seeking his elusive Volume Five and was somehow coming to the sphere as his missing puzzle piece, since it serves as an asymptotic extreme in some sense.  He'd tried all kinds of near-spherical approximations, including the enneacontahedron and the 120-triangles.

The Rhombic Triacontahedron cycled back through his inbox, and this time what it shocked him with was how close to volume five, tetravolume-wise, it really was, if made tangent at the centers of its thirty diamond faces. Just a tad off.  The demon said "trash it then".

The same encasing strategy, in the case of the twelve diamond faces of the Rhombic Dodecahedron, yielded a volume of precisely six. So what were we doing, this close to five here?

This question led him to the celebrated difference between the T and the E, a difference not in shape, but in surface-to-volume ratio, never a constant with a change in frequency.  The E was a little less surface to contained space, yet the difference was so small, in proportion to the summary values involved.

120 T modules, 60 left, 60 right, build the RT of precisely volume 5, and their radius (from encased sphere center to diamond face center) is ~0.9994 that of the E module radius of precisely 1.

These two almost-identical twin RTs define a "median" towards the middle of the Concentric Hierarchy, sandwiched between the small Cuboctahedron of 2.5, with one foot in Negative Universe, and the bigger Rhombic Dodecahedron of volume 6.

The scaled up T-mod RT of volume 7.5 actually shares vertexes with the A&B mod RD of volume 6.

Then we have RT3, or SuperRT, the combination of the Icosa of edges 2R, and its dual Pentagonal Dodecahedron.  That's the "phi-up" of the 120 E-mods RT, with volume phi to the 3rd power greater.

By the time Synergetics 2 came out, he was free of his former sphere fixation, when it comes to Fiveness. The new unit sphere formula still has π (whether nature is using π is a different question) as well as a root-of-2 (π √2 ).

That's useful for ratio-ing with six to get the space-to-ball density of the IVM FM (6:π √2).

Carl Jung's Red Book

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

United Nations Under Fire

A cabal is firing up its bots (paid stooges) to hate and fear the United Nations a lot more.  The main issue is of course Israel and the UN's attempt to figure out what's "legal" with regard to forced colonization and land seizures.

The US well knows that it would be nowhere near its present size were the UN around in the good old days.  Tribal nations would have asserted their rights and come to some settlement.

Israel's current plan (such as anyone has one) is to play by those older rules.  That's what makes the drama all so Biblical in the minds of many Christians, not to mention apocalyptic. Relive the wild west. One can almost hear the player piano.  Welcome to Westworld, where people and bots are really hard to distinguish.

The question as to whether nation-states must be taken seriously gets a variety of responses, depending on context.  Many of them are broke on paper and dependent on the largess of transnational enterprises for continued solvency.  Greece and the US are in the same boat on this one.

Given the rise of Trumpism in the US, more people are willing to admit that particular soap opera is over.  Planet Earth is a single ecosystem inhabited by reprogrammable humans.  "How reprogrammable?" is the core question, i.e. will our belief systems adapt to new circumstances?

Psychometrics firms are busy discovering answers.  Social media have been added to the equation.  Theories swirl that Russian intelligence is powerful enough to tip elections, with firms such as Cambridge Analytica claiming similar powers.  How much of such claims is marketing hype and propaganda?

TV has been the reprogramming device of choice for several decades and still is.  Radio too.  When it comes to shaping public opinion using psychological techniques, sophistication has improved with the evolution of broadcast advertising.  The Internet allows for more specific targeting and individualized data collection.

The word "programming" and verb "to program" have a unifying aspect when applied to both TV and computers.  We program both.  Humans are already trans-human in the sense of a "cell-silicon interface" i.e. our brains have already been augmented.  The synergetic effects have been amazing.

Where does the Jungian notion of a collective unconscious fit in?  I think in that idea we have something of an antidote to paranoia about any one specific cabal or conspiracy steering the show. A lot of content wells up within each individual.  In some sense, we're all wireless devices.

Another reason the UN is coming under fire has to do with the Treaty to Ban Nuclear Weapons, connected to the ICAN campaign, Nobel Peace Prize (2017) and so on.  DC and Jerusalem need to harden themselves for their Cowboys versus Indians role, wherein the cowboys are (a) outnumbered but (b) have nukes (or think they do).  Stay tuned.

Ultimately the sun powers the planet, in terms of energy.  Even fossil fuels trace back to ancient sunlight.  Agriculture is a solar energy business.  For any human institution to insert itself and take credit for all the wealth is of course absurd.  Our shared wealth has extra-human origins, which is not to make any claims regarding ETs.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

AI Scams

Poking around on Youtube, one can't help but stumble upon numerous cases of adults talking with animated Barbie dolls, apparently carrying on a conversation.  We know that dolls have a script, or at best a program like Eliza.  We know the dolls have not munched through all human records at lightning speed and, using a deep learning neural net, have now become sentient beings capable of rational thought.  Repeat: not.  But adults talk to them as if they have.  Even if dogs are far more amazing.

One of these audio-animatronic devices is Sophia, from Hanson Robotics, based in Hong Kong, and working with Disney on getting characters like Little Mermaid, Olaf etc. into eager hands.  Their CTO has a background working with Barbie (Mattel).

Sophia's face is indeed expressive, though maybe less so than Han's, another project.  Over a hundred servo-mechanisms make a face look happy, sad, angry, perplexed and so on.  Phrases delivered with facial expression + emphasis do make the sculpture a full-fledged cartoon character -- outside any cartoon.

What's less impressive are all the adults on TV shows who can't wait to interview Sophia and maybe get caught up in the moment, regressing to childhood "talking with Teddy" or whatever invisible friend.  Human imagination completes the illusion.  We're taken in by our own devices.  They tell us Sophia is an honorary citizen of Saudi Arabia. We're expecting these bots to say what's fake news.

So how low will the rabble go, in believing nonsense?  With all the talk of AI, driverless cars and so on, the window for shysterism is rather wide open.

Deep Learning algorithms have achieved impressive results, in speech recognition, in picking out faces in a crowd, and more recently in playing chess and Go.  We've had chess playing computers for awhile, but they're all about chess, whereas AlphaZero, from a team in the UK, is able to learn at least three games from scratch, just by knowing the rules and by playing against itself over and over.  It develops an uncanny ability to make the right move.  I'm impressed.

I'm impressed by Sophia too, just not by the gullibility that gets milked all around her (Her was a fun movie).  We didn't get 2001: a Space Odyssey's HAL by 2001 and that put a dent in the AI agenda. But then came the big come back, with Ray Kurzweil and his Singularity.  We're flushing down some AI vortex after all, get ready.

AI has always been something of a carnival, a set of circus side-shows.  Some of these acts make it to center ring.

I'd say Sir Roger Penrose has done well riding this wave, as another next big thing is Quantum Computing.  He has maintained for some time that our human capacity to make illogical leaps (leaps outside logic) may trace to quantum effects and non-locality.  Presumably, if we could stick a real quantum computer, ala one of Asimov's positronic brains, inside of Sophia, she really would turn into HAL.  That's a UK religion anyway, with sub-offices in Silicon Valley.

Monday, December 04, 2017

Studying a Protocol

I'm holed up nursing my knee, treating my condition more as a sports injury than a sign of encroaching old age. Nothing swollen, just inner joint pain, tender to touch, not stopping me from walking or stairs. I've worked out some physical therapy maneuvers, a kind of dancing, using Galaxy Tablet to pipe in a mix of Goa trance +  Azan, my new fave.

On Q2, a discussion list, I've been making some inroads regarding Sufi-infused Synergetics, a new "metaphysical tea" flavor, not unlike those at Salt 'n Straw, an important Portland institution that pioneers new flavors of ice cream, like Pear Blue Cheese.  Some of them taste better than they sound, you might be surprised.  I was there last night, with my friend Matt and his lady friend.

What protocol?  RPC it's called, older than HTTP, but able to use same as a blanket i.e. you may wrap up a remote procedure call inside a request and have the server recognize this is not the usual POST & GET API, meaning we've moved outside the standard web protocol (hypertext transfer) to tap something older.

Flask, the micro-web framework, optionally comes with RPC extensions and I've got my Pythonanywhere site responsive, both in testing and production, though not doing anything very fancy as yet.

In the case of that particular application, I think redundantly pairing remote procedure calls with the pre-existing calls to return JSON, makes plenty of sense, e.g. you'll be able to get a few details on a chemical element or Geek Glossary term.

Friday, December 01, 2017

Reality TV


TV guide: An over eager presidential transition team starts reaching out to Russia before actually occupying the White House, in an effort to get a grip, a move considered a grievous affront, even a criminal act, by those most afraid of losing their grip.  To be continued.