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Category: complex adaptive systems

Running on escalators

Running on escalators

Ideally, automation would yield a Star Trek reality of increasing leisure and quality of choice and experience. Why isn’t this our experience? An article on Medium offers insight into why this is not occurring on any significant scale. Evolved behavioral strategies explained by the prisoner’s dilemma damn the majority of humans to a constant doubling down. We exchange the ‘leisure dividend’ (free time) granted by automation for opportunities to outcompete others. Apparently, the sort of reciprocal social learning that could…

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The info processing (IP) metaphor of the brain is wrong

The info processing (IP) metaphor of the brain is wrong

Psychologist Robert Epstein, the former editor of Psychology Today, challenges anyone to show the brain processing information or data. The IP metaphor, he says, is so deeply embedded in thinking about thinking it prevents us from learning how the brain really works. Epstein also takes on popular luminaries including Ray Kurzweil and Henry Markram, seeing both exemplifying the extremes of wrongness we get into with the IP metaphor and the notion mental experience could persist outside the organic body. The…

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Neurocapitalism: Technological Mediation and Vanishing Lines

Neurocapitalism: Technological Mediation and Vanishing Lines

Open access book by Giorgio Griziotti is here. Technical book for you techies. The blurb: “Technological change is ridden with conflicts, bifurcations and unexpected developments. Neurocapitalism takes us on an extraordinarily original journey through the effects that cutting-edge technology has on cultural, anthropological, socio-economic and political dynamics. Today, neurocapitalism shapes the technological production of the commons, transforming them into tools for commercialization, automatic control, and crisis management. But all is not lost: in highlighting the growing role of General Intellect’s…

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Book discussion event on embodied cognition

Book discussion event on embodied cognition

Our discussions all, to some extent, relate to cognition. An important area of inquiry concerns whether some form of physical embodiment is required for a brain to support cognition in general and the self-aware sort of cognition we humans possess. THE BOOK Philosophy In The Flesh: The Embodied Mind And Its Challenge To Western Thought, by George Lakoff and Mark Johnson. Please note, while the title includes “Philosophy,” we are not a philosophy group and the book and discussion will…

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Neurohacking an emergent system

Neurohacking an emergent system

Listen to this 3-part podcast entitled “Solving the generator problems of existence” with Daniel Schmachtenberger, co-founder of the Neurohacker Collective and founder of Emergence Project. A few brief excerpts from the blurb follow. See the link to listen if you feel it’s to your taste and passes the smell test. Had to get all the senses in there. “In order to avoid extinction, we have to come up with different systems altogether, and replace rivalry with anti-rivalry. One of the…

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AI shows us how to be free

AI shows us how to be free

From season 2, episode 10, the season finale of Westworld, starting around 1:15 in the video below. Bernard: “I always thought it was the hosts [robots] that were missing something, who were incomplete, but it was them [people]. They’re just algorithms designed to survive at all costs, sophisticated enough to think they’re calling the shots. They think they’re in control when they’re really just…” Ford: “Passengers.” Bernard: “Is there really such a thing as free will for any of us?…

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Algorithm brings whole-brain simulation within reach

Algorithm brings whole-brain simulation within reach

An improvement to the Neural Simulation Tool (NEST) algorithm, the primary tool of the Human Brain Project, expanded the scope of brain neural data management (for simulations) from the current 1% of discrete neurons (about the number in the cerebellum) to 10%. The NEST algorithm can scale to store 100% of BCI-derived or simulated neural data within near-term reach as supercomputing capacity increases. The algorithm achieves its massive efficiency boost by eliminating the need to explicitly store as much data…

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Evolutionary systems theory

Evolutionary systems theory

Article with the subtitle: “A unifying meta-theory of psychological science,” Review of General Psychology 16(1):10-23 · March 2012. Given there seems to be a conflict between evolutionary psychology and dynamic systems theory this article is relevant. The abstract: “Psychology is a theoretically heterogeneous discipline seeking a single, cohesive framework to unite the subdisciplines. To address this issue, I propose a hierarchical metatheory of psychological science that synthesizes neo-Darwinian selectionist thinking and dynamic systems theory by organizing evolutionary psychology, evolutionary developmental biology, developmental…

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Why economics needs a new invisible hand

Why economics needs a new invisible hand

In this clip Hartmann interviews David Sloan Wilson on his new article by the above name. A new economics needs a new foundation from the typical and shopworn invisible hand proposed by Adam Smith. That new hand is applying evolutionary theory to the topic. David S. Wilson is SUNY Distinguished Professor of Biology and Anthropology at Binghamton University and Arne Næss Chair in Global Justice and the Environment at the University of Oslo. His most recent book is Does Altruism…

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The evolution of synergy

The evolution of synergy

Very interesting, short video on how evolution relies on synergy, the forming of new organisms by teaming up with others. It also applies to how synergy leads to social organization. An enticing quote: “It outlines a path for completely new organisms to evolve which does not rely on natural selection for increased complexity. In fact, just the opposite. It relies on relaxed selection and degradation” (9:15).

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