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"We are in this world for only a brief moment and we take ourselves way too seriously". Mar 28, 2021
"The past is not any more certain than the future". Mar 12, 2021
Life is an eclipse that briefly obscures eternity. Feb 2021
"If it can be done, why do it?" (Gertrude Stein) Jan 2021
Wikipedia just celebrated its 20th birthday. Its role in spreading disinformation ("fake news") is wildly underestimated. 20 years of cultural sabotage. https://www.scaruffi.com/politics/wikipedi.html
Happy birthday Kane Tanaka, the first person to make it to the age of 118 in more than 20 years
"Truth is in everything, even in lies" Jan 2, 2021
"Are we becoming post-human, or pre-human?" Sep 10, 2020
"We frequently think of technology as dehumanizing us. Does technology instead humanizes us?" Sep 10, 2020
We have never been modern: we are still stuck in the medieval world of plagues, wars, famine and riots. Jun 2, 2020
"The fact that so many Facebook users think that their comments are funny and smart tells you how far Facebook users still are from becoming funny and smart."
Let's try and think like a virus: what does the world look like from the viewpoint of a virus? What does a pandemic look like to a virus? What one species views as a pandemic another might view as a time of plenty, a time of boom. May 15, 2020
"Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different. It is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next." (Arundhati Roy, Financial Times, April 3, 2020)
The greatest Fox News hoaxes: 2003 Saddam Hussein has weapons of mass destruction; 2007 The Bush economy is booming; 2012 Obama is a Muslim; 2020 The covid19 is less dangerous than the flu; and (drum roll!) there was no collusion between Trump and Russia.
"No matter how long you walk, you are always in the same place, but you are never the one who started walking."
"A very clear question is an answer"
Welcome to yet another pointless war in the Middle East that will cost trillions of dollars, kill tens of thousands of people, cause millions of refugees, raise a new generation of terrorists, and only to protect the interests of Trump's friends in the Islamic dictatorship of Saudi Arabia and Israel's corrupt regime, and of course to distract public opinion from Trump's endless scandals and from the fact that North Korea can now nuke the USA.
"The greatest invention of all times: the question mark"
Stephen Malinowski's animated graphical scores of Beethoven's string quartets https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLtj_HurkS7ZxXrUnAXpnX0P5hzyPy7Hul
Innovation is an art, not a science. Only art truly innovates. Tech innovators are simply scientists with an artistic mind.
Some problems have no solution, should have no solution, and are not problems
The purpose of sleeping is to wake up. (The purpose of waking up is unknown)
God speaks clearly only when he (she?) shuts up
Common sense is increasingly uncommon
In the middle of writing a sentence that I thought was important, a sentence that begins with the words "In the middle of writing a sentence that I thought was important.", I started wondering whether it's worth writing it, and I didn't finish it.
All my life i've been conducting an autopsy on the corpse of humankind and i still have to find out where the heart is
We understand what we don't know. We don't even know what we understand.
Turth, not ignorance, is bliss.
“The fool who persists in his folly will become wise.” (William Blake)
"There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide" (Albert Camus)
Besides destroying the natural environment, humans also kill 60 billion mammals and birds every year to eat them. The biggest natural disaster on Earth is the daily meals of the human race.
Suggestion for Webster dictionary: "trump - noun, often attributive \ 'tramp \ A person with a very low IQ who tells everybody else they have very low IQs."
"When a thousand people believe some made-up story for one month, that's fake news. When a billion people believe it for a thousand years, that's a religion" (Yuval Harari)
Piero Scaruffi interviewed about the LASERs and AI: https://t.co/y9FgqpIUMV
Paul Virilio about the "information highways" in 1995: "What lies ahead is a disturbance in the perception of what reality is... It is obvious that this loss of orientation, this non-situation, is going to usher a deep crisis which will affect society and hence, democracy"
"The frantic abolition of all distances brings no nearness" (Heidegger)
"Life is good and it's good to be alive" said the poet Vladimir Mayakovsky in 1923. He killed himself in 1930.
Enquist's father kept a book of poetry that nobody ever read and that was burned at his death: 10/10.
"Nothing causes anything, but everything causes nothing"
"We are secretely spying while being secretely spied on"
"When the impossible happens, everybody has a very simple explanation for why it was inevitable".
James Joyce's Finnegans Wake set to music by 100+ musicians link
After a panel on AI & Art, i was looking for a definition of art. Not sure if somebody said it before me: art is a meaning generator.
VanGogh & Nietzsche went mad the same year, 1888, also the year when Kodak introduced the first consumer camera
The incredible state of the art in robotics: link
"Are we the toilet or the plunger?"
A Christian white Trump fan kills 6 Muslims in Canada and almost nobody talks about it (Fox News even said that he was a Muslim immigrant!)
"I hate some of these people, but I'd never kill them. I hate them. No, honestly I would never kill them. I would never do that. Ah, let's see-nah, no, I wouldn't. I would never kill them. But I do hate them." (Trump about the free press, Dec 2016, Grand Rapids, MI)
Vladimir Trump's war on facts sends us back to medieval times link
The age of repressive kleptocracy link
The cure to eliminate fake news is that people stop reading 140-character tweets and start reading 600-page books
What sense does it make that a galaxy is 99.99% dark matter? link
France bans plastic forks, plates, etc: link
Hunters should only be allowed to hunt hunters
Pet owners: repent link
Most important paper of the year in AI? link
50 studies have assessed the accuracy of demographic, national, political, and other stereotypes link
Should you floss or not? Study says benefits unproven link
Industrial farming is one of the worst crimes in history link
"The problem is always to understand what the problem is"
The word "influenza" or "flu" is never capitalized but Ebola and Zika are always capitalized.
The history of human civilization can be rewritten as the history of making humans dumber and then inventing smarter tools tor dumber humans
The 15th of August of 2017 will be a pythagorean day (15*15+8*8=17*17)
The history of science is, by definition, a chronological record of past mistakes
"To be or not to be"? should be rephrased as two complementary questions: "Is it possible to be?" and "Is it possible not to be?"
Suicide rate has increased yearly since 1999. Coincidence: 1999 is when the first social network (Friendstr) launched link
Seen evidence that Pythagoras never existed. The founders of Western philosophy (the Sphinx) and math (Pythagoras) never existed. Powerful.
What AlphaGo can do besides playing Go: absolutely nothing. If this is a milestone for machines, humans can relax. A fly can do a lot more.
We mostly hide in places where everybody can see us.
The biggest structure of the century was not a skyscraper but the Fresh Kills landfill. Not a place for workers, but a place for garbage
Music in the home leads to 67% more sex worldwide link
Congratulations to the scientists who found gravitational waves, 100 years after Einstein predicted them" rel=nofollow target=_blank>link link
Visual analysis of my website: link
If an animal spread plastic garbage all over the planet, we would certainly exterminate it
Religious upbringing associated with less altruism (Jean Decety at Univ of Chicago) link
Luckily, Nature is much more exciting than Science makes it look like; and luckily Science is much more exciting than Nature makes it look like.
A mexican artist, Pedro Reyes, has melted 1,527 guns to make shovels for planting trees link
You are not what you do but what you allow others to do to you
A terrific metaphor: the hitchhiking robot designed to test the kindness of humans is destroyed by humans #HitchBOT
Dumb boring people use Facebook to post comments that show how smart and funny they are.
Heroin use has increased dramatically in the United States in the past decade link
Monty Python explains the Greek crisis link
Saving 5,000 year old Mes Aynak from the Taliban and the Chinese link
The Future of Employment: How susceptible are jobs to computerisation? (Oxford Univ) link
A Tech Boom Aimed at the Few, Instead of the World link
What is warming the world link
Bacteria rule the world link
Google's neural network makes psychedelic art link
The best memory is the one that forgets everything
Chinese scientists genetically modify human embryo link
The future of the human brain? neural implants that offer you pleasant experiences for free in exchange for sending neural impulses to your brain that will make you desire their products.
LeCun on A.I. link
Geoffrey Hinton, the man who revolutionized A.I. link
Global military spending totalled $1.8 trillion in 2014 link
The social progress index 2015 link (best and worst countries: link)
Charles Mann: "How the Potato Changed the World": link
Today's tech bubble compared with the epic 2000 bubble: link
An object would fall side to side through the Earth in 38 minutes and 11 seconds link
Today the news of Chinua Achebe's death went viral... except that he had already died two years ago link
We never fully wake up.
Things that Satan praises in the Jewish/Christian/Muslim books: democracy, gender equality, capitalism, science, sex, education, progress, fun
I fail to see the difference: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-31989841 and http://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-31983627
Report on all available forms of genome editing techniques link
Ido Bachelet is working on DNA nanobots designed to find and destroy cancer cells link
Alcohol tops the list of most inflammatory and toxic foods link
Women in Silicon Valley: link
Narcissistic personality traits rose just as quickly as obesity from the 1980s to the present link
Poetry is the art of turning the obvious into the mysterious. Feb 3, 2015
41% of people in the USA didn't take a single day of vacation in 2014 link
What a viewer views in a painting is actually not the light that the painting absorbs/likes but the light that the painting reflects/rejects
The largest picture ever taken link
Gods are software, and, like all software, they have bugs.
The most hated, ridiculed and creepy gadget is dead link
UC Berkeley class coming up Theories of Brain, Mind & Consciousness link
You are a grammatical construct: do not misspell yourself.
You can be a verb, a noun, an adjective, an article etc or a punctuation mark. The company you keep determines what you are.
When people talk about "survival of the fittest", what exactly do they mean by "survival"?
We have more money to spend in our spare time but not more time in which to spend it therefore time is increasingly more valuable than money
Why is everyone so busy link
Why you should die at 75 link
Jennifer Chan's essay "Why Are There No Great Women Net Artists?" link
It makes you wonder what will be Homo Sapiens' closest relative 66 million years from now link ("A Chicken is the Closest Living Member of T-Rex")
The irony of the human condition is that there are no answers: each answer is, in reality, a new question
Alcohol consumption in the USA link
Google has unveiled a project that offers web users the option to pay to visit sites rather than see adverts link
A venture capitalist discusses the confluence of art and tech link
People's attention span is becoming so short that it will soon be impossible to explain the consequences of a short attention span
Physicists discover what we have always known, that the universe does not make sense: link
In 2013 US households on average spent $913 on cell service. In 20 years = the downpayment on the average US home. link
Science is often an excuse for not thinking, and a scientist is often not a thinker. Worse of all is the science of thought, neuroscience.
David Sinclair says he discovered which are the genes responsible for the ageing process and how to reverse aging link
Why have young people in Japan stopped having sex? link
It is rational not to be rational. It would be irrational to be rational. Only very irrational people are rational.
This video is about mushrooms but the cinematography alone is worth it link
The Tracy-Widom distribution link
TV Guide's "most revealing red carpet dresses" actually shows some truly creative art fashion link
Fewer people drive since 2004: link
Epic hikers in Switzerland take epic pictures: link
Elon Musk on Mars colonization: link
Weak force may be responsible for the asymmetry of life link
Aephraim Steinberg encoded three quantum bits using just two photons link
Evelyn Glennie (a solo percussionist who is mostly deaf): How to truly listen link
How the Internet was hijacked to become an advertising platform link
A classic paper that too few people read: Seth Lloyd's Ultimate physical limits to computation link
The way we teach morality to children, by reward and punishment, doesn't seem very moral to me.
154,000 tons of plastic are floating over the oceans. Degraded plastic particles now outnumber zooplakton six to one
Steven Pinker on Sex: link
Candy Chang's "Before I die" link
Public opinion is public ignorance
Complexity is a simple concept to understand, and simplicity is a very complex concept.
I wish i could tell you what to do but what to do is not to let people tell you what to do.
"God is a hacker, not an engineer" (Francis Crick)
The future is not evenly distributed (paraphrasing William Gibson)
"Explanation is to theory-formation as orgasm is to reproduction" (Alison Gopnik, link)
The welfare state at work: the Italian Tourist Board spends an astounding 98 percent of its budget on salaries, with basically nothing left for its actual job of tourism promotion
List of top 40 game designers: link Interesting because there is no woman in the top 35. Any other field that is so male?
Women use Wikipedia as much as men, but they write less than 15% of the articles (from Astra Taylor's "The People's Platform")
Stephen Wolfram on Mathematica: link
God to moses in the "Bible": "I am who i am". Iago in Shakespeare's "Othello": "I am not what i am". Iago is way more interesting than God.
The universe is a pointless distraction.
Life is a transition from the "I" to the "me" and back to the "I", who watches the "me" live, and back to the "me", who watches the "I" die.
The cognitive life of a bee: link
Good article on selfies: link
Nothing has killed more people than religion, and, still, all religious people claim that their religion is about peace
Best countries for working women: link
Steve Mould's leaping beads, best science experiment in recent memory link
The landscape provides us with the tools that we use to shape the landscape
Between here and now is me.
Beauty does not lie in the eye of the beholder link
In the 1960s Pietro Maria Vallasciani designed a machine capable of building the entire universe. I am trying to get his blueprints.
70 years before the iPod: link
What Secrets Your Phone Is Sharing About You link
Neural Interfaces Conference 2014 link
Creativity is a why, not a what - Biology, History and Thermodynamics of Creative Processes (my lecture at USF): link
DARPA publishes all its open source code link
My favorite equations: link
Semiotic note: signifiers signify signifiers.
Over half of 75 Muslim terrorists studied by Bergen & Pandey 2005 in the New York Times had gone to a Western college and only 9% had attended madrassas
Roman emperor Tiberius had a glassmaker executed for inventing unbreakable glass
The law of entropy leads us to fight against our fate instead of accepting it, and that's the history of humankind.
"To leave is to arrive and to arrive is to leave" (Yong-Kyun Bae)
Making Music With a Moebius Strip link
Plants talk link
Jeremy England's theory of life link
Anybody who claims to understand science does not understand science.
A study shows that the 90 biggest carbon producers account for the vast majority of carbon emissions in the world link
Hilarious article that imagines if the USA were like France (everything in the article truly happened... in France) link
Are we mapping the territory or is the territory mapping us?
The world's wealthiest 1% have $110 trillion in assets, and the richest 85 people in the world have as much wealth as the bottom 50% link
Why is it that these days we call "smart" everything that is dumb?
Venkatesh Rao: "Entrepreneurs Are The New Labor" link
If Google buys Nest (thermostats) for $3 billion everybody talks about it, if Suntory buys Beam (liquors) for $16b nobody talks about it
Social media statistics for 2013: link
Now that Obama has told the NSA to curtail its spying activities link who can tell Google and Facebook to do the same?
Roger Schank on Artificial Intelligence (and read David Deutsch's quote) link
"There's no such thing as information overload. There's only filter failure." (Clay Shirky)
Scientific ideas that are becoming obsolete: link
Visual animation of musical scores link
Quick report on driverless cars link
A world wide web for robots to learn from each other link
Disruptive innovation is frequently more about disruption than about innovation
The less you know about the past the more likely you are to be amazed by the present
"So little of the future promised in TED talks actually happens" (Benjamin Bratton) link
Alcohol finally on the way out? link
The reason the world is having a debate about surveillance is because of documents leaked by a man whom the USA considers a traitor
Finally, after 2000 years, an official resurrection: a corpse walked out of a morgue in Kenya :-) link
What Asimov predicted 50 years ago about 2014: link How disappointed he would be... moon colonies? cordless appliances?
If you think the NSA is scary, think that what the NSA has is nothing compared with what Google and Facebook have.
The coldest temperature ever recorded was -89.2ø Celsius at the Soviet Vostok Station in Antarctica, on July 20, 1983.
"We can taste only by destroying" (Hegel)
Facebook declining among teenagers link
How to spend a friday night probing the secrets of the mind: Hameroff's "Quantum computation in brain microtubules" link
Computing creates new sacred spaces, rituals, myths
Women are better than men at multitasking link
Why the brain prefers books to ebooks (no it's not only old people's old habits) link
The bipedal Atlas robot link
Billions of Earths link
We are a species obsessed with the future. We are also the species that is fully aware of death, i.e. that there is no future.
Carbon instead of silicon for computers link
How did Google get so refined? Today a search for Gandhi videos returns this ad "Hot Girls Don't Poop - The secret to oderless pooping"
The world's most valuable companies link
World Happiness Report link
Legatum Prosperity Index link
Suicide rates in the world link
Andrei Korobeinikov performing Shostakovich Piano concerto No.2 and he's only in his 20s wow... link
Cohen's Sisters of Mercy originally , in middle age and in old age
Bernhard Riemann's The Habilitation Dissertation link
Murray Gell-Mann on the relationship between truth and beauty in Physics: link
In 1960 Heinz von Foerster predicted that population growth would become infinite by Friday, November 13, 2026
"The real is not impossible, it is simply more and more artificial" - Gilles Deleuze (1969)
The World's First Tumblr Art Symposium link
Celebrating Female Game Designers link
75% of people born in London in 1662 died before they reached the age of 26
Memories of the future are sometimes more accurate than memories of the past,because we have a vested motivation to keep changing the past
Max Tegmark: "our physical world is an abstract mathematical structure...only computable structures exist" link
Robot Revolution documentary link
Autistic people have a 3% error rate when they write computer code vs 18% by typical software engineers
I just realized that the vast majority of engineers in Silicon Valley don't know why silicon is so important and how a computer works.
The meaning of life is addiction. If you are not addicted to something, you probably already committed suicide.
South America has 28% of the world's water and 6% of the world's population, North Amer has 18% and 8%, China 20% and 7%, India 17% and 4%
Android science in Japan link
Jun Rekimoto's link
Brian Roe's project to create a human sized animatronic character from only lasercut mechanics link
Izhar Gafni's cardboard bike link
Videos that explain scientific papers (if more scientists did this, it would bring science a lot closer to people): link
China resettling two million Tibetans link
Planck satellite image of the early universe:(with what looks like scars from a collision with another universe) link
The world's smallest movie at link
They waited for millions of years for us to arrive. Now they are just waiting for us to go away.
Meditation for those who works in corporation link
As we live, we talk less and less about the things we really care about because we learn that that is not what life is about
One of the most frequently misspelled words is mispell
Life is a Post Scriptum and it's a very short one
One day you realize that there's nobody watching you, and there never was; and that's when everybody starts watching you.
Double a city's population and its economic productivity goes up 130 percent link
An individual is more likely to behave irrationally when in a group than when he's alone, and there must be an evolutionary reason for it
Google needs to change motto to "Don't be evil like us" - from my friend Tom Spencer
Starting with conception, the truly important events of our life are decided by others: why is it called "my life"?
Geoengineering to save the Earth link
The secret to high IQ: link
In 1949 Wiener already imagined the future that still has to come in 2013: link
Greatest invention of the year? link
One of the greatest comedians ever: Steven Wright link
Fear of Google Glass link
The answer is always "yes and no".
Expelled from Paradise, Adam and Eve staged a revolution and seized power. To this day, God is the only one who does not live in Paradise.
Creativity in the Wild: Improving Creative Reasoning through Immersion in Natural Settings link
Luke Muehlhauser estimating when AI will be achieved: link and my take on AI and Singularity: link
Loneliness is the inability to find company in knowledge. Loneliness is not about people, it's about meaning.
What did Adam and Eve do the day after they were expelled from Eden?
Words use us to be spoken otherwise they would not exist.
Health hazart of marijuana link (Scientific American)
Beijing Genomics Institute link
The world divides into poets and poems. When you are a poet, what poem are you writing? And when you are a poem, who's writing you?
The greatest WWW phenomenon of all times was the Hampsterdance link and this was the 1998 original link
CO2 levels reach 400 pats per million - a level not seen on earth for a least 300,000,00 years link
Internet use around the world (scroll down to the maps) link
Peter Thiel and Marc Andreessen debating innovation link
"The Internet is 5 million terabytes (TB) of which Google has indexed roughly 200 TB or just .004%" (Google's CEO Eric Schmidt)
Children raise parents
Life is plural
What happens if Schrodinger's cat is performing the exact same experiment on Schrodinger himself at the exact same time?
Ants and math link
The mouse's brain in three dimension graphics: link
There is a cosmic battle going on between time and space, and we are caught in the middle. When one wins, the world will end.
It is easy to confuse when and where.
In the old days our shadows followed us wherever we went instead of us following our shadows as we do now.
Australopithecus sediba from two million years ago link
As we always suspected, Stanford researchers have discovered that there is an alien inside a mouse's brain link
"DYK our Chicken & Ranch Premium McWrap has cucumbers?" McDonald's ad between tweets on climate change and singularity
The National Digital Public Library Is Launched link
I went to a free lecture on climate change by one of the world's experts (Chris Field): the audience was 90% senior and 95% male... puzzled
The Bitcoin Bubble and the Future of Currency link
We are almost certainly the leftovers.
At http://www.lasertalks.com NASA's Chris McKay told me that "what Curiosity Mars robot has done in 200 days a human could do in an afternoon"
What prevents light from going faster than 300 000 km/s?
Etienne-Jules Marey, inventor of cinema link, aviation link, the wind tunnel link and cardiology link
Ideology is a study of causes, not of effects.
The Antikythera Mechanism, the world's oldest computer, designed by Archimedes more than 2000 years ago link
We can only fail. Just try to fail better.
Good can only triumph over Evil by employing extreme evil, thereby fulfilling the mission of Evil.
Life was obviously invented by a dead person
It's not about where you are but about who's around you.
The number of US citizens that are on disability programs is skyrocketing link
Einstein reading his essay on the common language of science link
The present always feels premature even though the future is often overdue
The ad generation link
Larry Smarr, the first self-quantifying man link
"The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads," (former Facebook research scientist Jeff Hammerbacher )
More people have access to cellphones than toilets link
"Everything can be bought and everything on earth has a price" famously said Russian billionaire Boris Berezovsky, who died yesterday at 67
My friend Anand: "We should organize a global event -- 'No facebook hour'. For one hour we all stop using facebook and see what happens".
A few minutes ago: "piero, nothing amuses you" - "no, it's nothingness that amuses me"
Getting closer and closer to watching the Big Bang happen link
Where can i buy a dumbphone? (see previous tweet)
If you use a WALKing stick it means you don't WALK well. If you use READing glasses, it means you can't READ well. If you use a SMARTphone it means...
Is there such a thing as "the pursuit of happiness"? Isn't happiness precisely the state of not pursuing anything?
"Antibiotics resistance will kill people" link VS "Drugs will help people live to 150 years" link
Using a dataset of Facebook users, researchers predict race,age,sexuality, substance use using Likes alone link
The only thing that is worse than not finding the solution to a problem is to find the right solution to the wrong problem
Freedom fighters don't exist anymore: the only people willing to give their life for a cause are terrorists and soldiers.
The history of the world in a nutshell: the luxuries of the previous generation become the necessities of the new generation.
Science is not a catalog of certainties but an endless exploration of uncertainties
How do imaginary objects travel through time and culture?
Brain to brain interface: link
The Human Connectome Project link
"To find something interesting you merely have to look at it long enough" (Flaubert)
Kierkegaard said he only read "writings by men who have been executed."
What is it like to be the number 4726?
The Evolution of the Quantified Self into the Qualified Self and the Extended Exoself link
Yet another Google flop? link
How Facebook will resurrect the dead as digital zombies: link
2 to the 57,885,161th - 1 is the largest known prime number as of yesterday
Does the number 4726 have a mind?
Michael Gordon's Timber for six 2x4s link
If we ever create a machine that is a fully-functioning brain totally equivalent to a human brain, will it be ethical to experiment on it?
The future of high-tech is origami link
A Greek island of very very very old people link
On Joyce's Finnegans Wake link
We're Underestimating the Risk of Human Extinction link
There was no other place on Earth as bloody as the Americas before Columbus arrived link
John Lloyd inventories the invisible link
The number of devices on the Internet exceeds the number of people on the Internet link
Researchers are focusing on whether gadgets are changing how our brains work link
Do we live in the age of local globality or global locality?
The great philosopher David Chalmers on the Singularity (unconvincingly): link and link
If i replace every neuron in your brain with a neuron made of silicon that carries out the exact same function, are you still you?
I will not know who you are until you tell me who i am
Dark Energy, Dark matter, Big data, Intimate Data by Roger Malina link
Dark matter and WIMPs link
Instead of a world of self-driving cars imagine a world with no cars,where people inflate a balloon and fly over the city - we need more poetry and less google
Is the product of evolution always good? Are Hitler and malaria good? If Hitler had won and if everybody had malaria, we would say yes
Clones will clone
Richard Dawkins and Randolph Nesse link
99% of us live on the wrong side of the Internet link
The Waldorff method of teaching children... with no electronic technology link
Only by mourning our impotence can we assert our power
Sherry Turkle: Connected, but alone? link
The thinnest material ever invented link
"We wanted flying cars-instead we got 140 characters." (Peter Thiel's motto)
There are 17 billion Earth-size planets link
Why We Can't Solve Big Problems link
Beauty is everywhere. Unfortunately, we are nowhere.
Meet the Amazing Robots That Will Compete in the DARPA Robotics Challenge link
Jaron Lanier on the Web link
It is cool to behave different only when everybody else is behaving that way.
"While protein folding is critical and fundamental to virtually all of biology, much of the process remains a mystery." link
Three people who famously thought that the less you sleep the smarter you are: Napoleon, Hitler, Stalin. One person who famously thought the opposite: Einstein.
We think we are the protagonist of our life's story but by the end we realize that we have merely been a supporting character in other people's lives
Thinking is not a property unique to humans, but unthinking is
Digitized archives of the Guggenheim link
"Corruption, poor education, immigration barriers and state dominance" (European Bank for Reconstruction and Development report on Russia)
Islamists in Pakistan Kill Women Who Were Giving Children Polio Vaccines link
If you are under 25, your life is fully choreographed.
"Art and Atoms" by Tami Spector and Roger Malina http://artandatoms.com/
The first simulation in software of an entire living organism link
Hiking Mt Hua in China link
50 years of robotics in seen minutes link
Obesity kills more people than hunger link
A full scale replica of Noah's Ark in seen in the Netherlands link
"There are four male suicides for every female suicide, but three times as many females as males attempt suicide." link
About 38 thousand people commit suicide every year in the USA link
Besse Cooper, the world's oldest person, died at 116
Atheists and other religious skeptics suffer persecution in many parts of the world and in seven nations they can be executed link
A robot than can finally do what any animal can do (well, at least one thing that any animal can do): link
If my brain changes all the time, it means that i am dying all the time. Death will just be yet another death in a long series of deaths.
If high-tech bloggers put their money where their mouth is they would all be out of business and replaced by better ones (heard over lunch)
The sperm count of French men fell by a third between 1989 and 2005 link
"There is no position so absurd that some philosopher has not held it" (James Fetzer)
"The choice is not between being philosopher or not being philosophers, it's about being good or bad philosophers"
"Has artificial intelligence taught us anything of importance about the mind?" (Hilary Putnam, 1988)
Loneliness is a cancer only if you let it grow. Taken in small doses, it is the most powerful medicine, the only one capable of resurrecting a person.
"Making an Art of Creativity: The Cognitive Science of Duchamp and Dada" (Phillip Prager) link
It is cool to behave different only when everybody else is behaving that way.
Mar 2012: Facebook has 7 billion visits a month, Twitter 182 million, Pinterest 104 million, LinkedIn 86 million, Tagged 72 million and Google+: 61 million, and Facebook users average 405 minutes per month, Pinterest and Tumblr users 89 minutes, Twitter 21 minutes, Google+ 3 minutes
The sociology of social networks: link
"It is inconceivable that we should allow so great a possibility for service, for news, for entertainment, for education and for vital commercial purposes to be drowned in advertising chatter" (Herbert Hoover talking about the radio in 1922).
"In 3000 AD one will doubtless be able to travel from Kansas City to Peking in a few hours. But if the civilization of these two places is the same, there will be no object in doing so." (Aldous Huxley in 1926)
"Advertising is a force with few peers in the cultural history of the 20th century" (Tim Wu)
A 33-yo British, Graham Hughes, travels to all 201 sovereign states in the world without flying link
More Tibetans set themselves on fire link
Millions of jobs for robots link
Race Against the Machine by Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee link
Gary Marcus on Deep Learning: link
Side effects of marijuana link
"There can be no greater absurdity and no greater disservice to humanity in general than to insist that all men are equal" (Henry Ford)
"The entire Earth will be converted into a huge brain" (Nikolas Tesla, talking about the radio in 1904)
1/998001 = 0.000001002003004005006007008009010011012013014... get it?
Move to Bugarach if you want to survive the end of the world :-) link
An island that doesn't exist, shown on Google Maps: link
Dumbest sentence of the year: "attempts to revoke the fatal separation of feeling and understanding long demanded by the history of philosophy and explode the privilege aesthetics accords to content over form and contemplation over immersion" (Wikipedia) link
There is no apocalypse coming. We have been living inside the apocalypse ever since. We will disappear when it's over.
It is perfectly legal for a woman to have a child at 60 but a single woman of 25 is not allowed to adopt a child
Polygamy is considered immoral but Abraham and other Biblical prophets had multiple wives and so did the founder of Islam: are they immoral?
Prostitution is illegal, but paying dinner on a date is ok, and marrying someone for his income is not only ok but advised by your parents
Sex with an underage person is legal if you are underage too, which is like saying that it is ok to rob a bank if you are a banker
Faith in the capitalist model by country link
Nothing is trivial in history
Life may not be worth living, but then death is not worth dying
Academy of Neuroscience for Architecture link
Few have noticed that the USA is on the way to becoming the world's main oil producer overtaking all Arab countries link
Four Tibetans set themselves on fire in China link
Mazie Hirono is the first Japanese immigrant, the first Asian-American woman and the first Buddhist to become senator of the USA
Every minute makes sense to the minute after it but not to the minute before it.
No matter how far you run, the distance remains the same
The oldest town in Europe link
Most stone-age people died before the age of 25 http://www.scaruffi.com/monument/ireland/gr035.jpg hence http://www.scaruffi.com/news/opin0712c.html
Ayn Rand's popularity in India link
Fear and hypocrisis in today's universities link
The rich are moving downtown link
Is the USA the best place there ever was for philosophy? link
Why something exists instead of nothing: link
History has been shaped by people who knew what Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, etc really meant regardless of what they actually said
Simple, mathematical laws govern the properties of cities link
My guess is that the greatest unhappiness would be a utopian world in which everybody is equally happy.
Kurzweil, Vinge, Norvig @ Singularity: "AI is doing well" but they cannot name one conceptual innovation in AI over the last 20 years
"72% of foods are rated healthier by the eater than by everyone else" (John Wilbanks)
If you work in hightech you are a cog in a grabnd scheme to change the world, a scheme you don't understand and a world you can't comprehend
(Singularity Summit in SF) The problem with the people who attend events on the g"intelligence explosion" is that they seem to be so dumb
I think that the caste system (as bad as it is) helped prevent Western-style slavery in India (the Wikipedia article is 100% garbage)
Steven Pinker at today's Singularity Summit that i am attending: "In our study 75% of men admitted having fantasized at least once of killing someone, from which we can conclude that 25% of men lie"
Sadly, psychologists (and society at large) think of solitude as a disease instead of a magical experience that helps you become you
It is becoming increasingly difficult to disappear
Hero of the month: Malala Yousufzai link
Spectacular sand animation by Shelly Xie link
I don't want technology to keep me alive forever, i want technology to multiply me so that many copies of me can multitask on many projects at the same time
46% of US citizens think God made humans within the past 10,000 years. (2012 Gallup poll link
In 2007 the Washington Post organized an experiment: classical-music virtuoso Joshua Bell played (incognito) a million-dollar violin in a subway station. Only a 3-year old child was attracted to the music link
Bob Horn on "Leonardo da Vinci's Lessons on Innovation and Visualization" link
Wearable computing (way before Google Goggles) link
Concerto for encephalographs link
Wearable Computing link
Best title and most influential lecture: "Does The Flap Of A Butterfly's Wings In Brazil Set Off A Tornado In Texas?" (E Lorenz, 1972)
Lifeboat Foundation: helping humanity survive existential risks and possible misuse of powerful technologies: good or bad idea? link
Asteroid dust to fight global warming link
Biogradable devices: link
A new element: ununtrium (113 atoms) link
Black hole M87 will become a major playground for cosmologists link
Hubble Telescope's eXtreme Deep Field pictures (early universe): link
The worst neuroscience books ever link
Pro and con of Instagram: link
Micchami dukkadam to everybody
There are more unique products (10 billion) than there are people (7 billion) "The New Industrial Revolution" by Peter Marsh (Yale, 2012)
Philosophy is the discipline of turning solutions into problems, science is the discipline of turning problems into other problems, and art is the discipline of turning anything into a problem
Futurists say computing power is leading to the singularity. Physicists say computing power is approaching its limit: link
When Do We Become Truly Conscious? link
Molluscs that switch sex link
If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, then it probably is a marketing commercial to sell ducks
Wheat is a chronic poison link
Neuroscience of laughter link
"In the future everyone will have their fifteen minutes of fame" (Andy Warhol, 1968)
Harvard grows cyborg tissues by embedding a three-dimensional network of nanoscale wires into bioengineered human tissues link
NASA just found millions of supermassive black holes link
Happy 116th birthday, Mrs Besse Cooper, oldest person in the world and 8th oldest of all times
The people who enthusiastically embrace any new release of any new product are usually those who are afraid of not being cool anymore, e.g. those who are afraid of getting old and out of touch with their times (which sometimes already happens in your 20s)
Saying that the GPS or any other device frees the mind to do more creative is like saying that an elevator frees the body to do more physical exercise. It just contributes to obesity.
Corollary: if you want a healthy body, don't take the elevator; and, if you want a healthy mind, don't use the GPS.
Milton Friedman on Libertarianism and Humility link
The rare invention done the old kitchen-sink way: a room-temperature maser link
UCSC OpenLab: Art, Science, Technology and Culture link
Recommended classical recording: Berg violin concerto performed by Abbado and violinist Isabelle Faust on Harmonia Mundi
Recommended classical recording: Complete Debussy for solo piano performed by Jean-Efflam Bavouzet on Chandos
Funny: Lying less linked to better health link
1959 the year that changed jazz link
360 degree view of Mars link
You are what you read. Make sure you want to be what you read.
Did black holes shape the evolution of the universe link
Why has technological and scientific progress decelerated so much over the last 100 years?
The origin of intelligence: link
You should contradict yourself at least once a day.
Best Olympic picture so far link
The people who don't believe in modern science are usually the same people who don't believe in modern art.
The human brain shrank about 10% over the last 10000 years (Peter Brown "Holocene size reduction" & John Hawks "Smaller brains in human evolution")
Stanford has produced the first complete computer model of a free-living organism: link
We often forget that there are two alternatives to "bad": "good" and "worse"
Soon the Voyager 1 will leave the Solar System, the first human-made object to travel outside it link
The problem after the Higgs is that in theory that boson should create infinite mass: so where does the extra mass go? link
Send me a copy of your past
Human civilization, from the Pyramids to the iPhone, is the story of turning the impossible into the inevitable (and a lot of it is not about genius but simply about education)
The debate around the Higgs Boson link
Venture capital after Andreessen-Horowitz (subtitle: it's not always the best one who gets the money) link
Astronomers have spotted the earliest known spiral galaxy, BX442 link
"Reversing the Decline in Big Ideas" (Harvard Business Review) link
Cutwail, Lethic and Grum are responsible for almost all spam. Who fights them: Russia's CERT-GIB, Britain's Spamhaus, California's FireEye,...
An iceberg twice the size of Manhattan has broken away from Greenland: link
If i am the question, you are the answer (Remix: if the question is me, the answer is you).
The history of philosophy in one diagram link
Google+ users spend on average only 3 minutes per month versus Facebook at over 400 minutes link
A wonderful letter written by a former slave to his master after the Civil War link
Software engineers: stop upgrading my software that works just fine, and start upgrading yourself.
"The Sublime in Art and Science" link
Eric Kandel's "The Age of Insight - The Quest to Understand the Unconscious in Art, Mind, and Brain" link
Zygote art magazine link
Brian Hayes on A.I. link
From software companies to data companies link
Hundreds of people burn a person alive for blasphemy in Pakistan link
Higgs Boson announcement link
Robert Edgar's "Animating the Memory Theater" link
Yeah down with plastic! link
Beyond Pandora: a computer composes pop music using natural selection link
"Larry Smarr envisions a planetary computer that will use nanosensors to collect data from your body's insides" (Atlantic, Jul 2012, p.112)
Most people you meet have jobs that you are happy you don't have. Most people think the same of you.
If Bush had done this, everybody would call him genocidal link but Obama does it and nobody talks about it
Commensal bacteria link
Good bacteria link
All the ants of the world (1,000 trillion of them) packed together are the same size as the seven billion humans of the world (EO Wilson)
Machines don't think, they do something else. Machine intelligence is as much an oxymoron as human furniture.
Machines must be understood not programmed.
"There is something not-there there" (Terrence Deacon)
We are not what we are. Now the question is: are we what we are not?
340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 is the new maximum number of devices that can be connected to the Internet
The world's digital information is growing at five trillion bits a second (George Dyson)
Very tiny title on CNN: Two Tibetans self-immolate outside Lhasa (and virtually no coverage on other news sites): link
Two creative minds cooperate: a documentary on Wayne Vitale's music by filmmaker Robert Edgar link
The age of fake friendship: link (bacteria that protect our bodies)
The ultimate social network: link (bacteria that protect our bodies)
"If everything is an illusion and nothing exists, I definitely overpaid for my carpet" (Woody Allen)
Debunking immortality: Stephen Cave's "Immortality" link (also my essay against longevity link)
"The more the world relies on smart machines, the more domestic wage rates become irrelevant... That will help the wealthier countries" link
Gideon Rose and Francis Fukuyama on Charlie Rose's program talking about the future of democracy link
Hilarious John Stewart satire on Israel-Iran link
Susan Cain: The power of introverts link
China cyber-steals industrial secrets link
DNA cannot help predict diseases link
Downloading is not stealing link
Scientists have produced a colossal picture of our Milky Way Galaxy, to reveal the detail of a billion stars link
Billions of habitable planets in our own Milky Way link
The future evolution of the brain link
The solution to oil dependency, gas prices, etc: future generations will see cars as boring appliances for obnoxious grandpas link
Don't live by yourself link
Edward Witten on quantum gravity, superstrings, etc link
Most software used by totalitarian regimes to limit the freedom of their citizens is made by Western companies
The eco-utopian visions of green architect Vincent Callebaut link
If i understand correctly: a bad phone + a bad camera + a bad camcorder + a bad gps + a bad internet terminal = a "smartphone"
Unpublished photos of Hiroshima and Nagasaki after the atomic bombs: link
Every year someone claims to have found particles that travel faster than light and every time they are proven wrong link
California museums rank last: link
After 244 years the Encyclopaedia Britannica will no longer be produced in print, new editions will appear only online.
The human race is a basement full of old scratched warped records: whenever you play one, you end up listening more carefully to the noise than to the music.
16 civilians killed by US soldier: there once was bumper sticker "Be nice to the USA or we'll bring democracy to your country""
Reading the classics in the 21st century: Dante put Islam's founder Mohammed in hell in the Divine Comedy. Where would he put him tday?
Chinese architect Wang Shu wins the Pritzker Architecture Prize
There is nothing more enigmatic and universal than a reed dancing in the wind.
Reading the classics in the 21st century: what would the Odyssey be like if its protagonist were a woman instead of a man?
China's next president link
The supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy is constantly swallowing asteroids link
We are meaningful contradictions that give meaning to the meaningless contradictions of the universe (including ourselves)
One of the most interesting UN reports of our days: "A Future Worth Choosing" (on global sustainability) link
A plane that can be driven (or a car that can fly) link
In defense of solitude and against collaboration: link
It takes ~20 years for the human brain to fully develop and become "creative" and the life expectancy of early humans was about 20
We should always remember that whatever we think about the brain is coming from our brain.
I observe the universe aware that it knows me a lot better than i know it, but nonetheless certain that what we are prevails over what it is.
Predictions about the future are always about what will happen (eventually). It would be much harder to predict what will never happen.
The alliance between religion and capitalism link
A world map of social networks link
IBM smashes Moore's Law, cuts bit size to 12 atoms link
Documentaries about how machines have colonized humans: link
Monks still setting themselves on fire in Tibet: link
The total number of civilians killed by US forces and their allies in Iraq is 14,705 and about 30% of them were children link
Thinking about nothing makes it something. Thinking about something makes it nothing.
Why cities are good: link
I wonder if Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi still agrees with his old definition of creative people link
Parmegiani's Etude Elastique (musique concrete from 1975) is so realistic that i went downstairs to check who was walking in the garage
"Technological progress is like an axe in the hands of a pathological criminal" (Albert Einstein) Wow - did he foresee Silicon Valley 2011?
Mark Suster's "The End of the Web?"
Women gang-raped, kidnapped as sex slaves, bought and sold, forced to marry, used to pay highway tolls, etc in Somalia link
Tyler Cowen`s "The Inequality That Matters"
Yuval Levin's "Beyond the Welfare State"
Jonah Lehrer`s Why Science Is Failing Us" (in health care)
Organ harvesting in China: prisoners are executed by firing squads and then doctors harvest livers and kidneys link
Conjoined twins born in Brazil have two heads (i.e. two brains) but share the same organs (e.g. a single heart): link
There is an infinite number of possible DNA combinations that yield conscious beings. Will they all exist? More than once? Some never will?
Finally: immortality for everybody link
50 famous atheists link
Andreas Illiger's Microsia is a game set into a plant cell. You can manipulate the cell's internal structure to create music link
Warner steals my texts (eg link) and probably text of others but they sue download websites in the name of copyrights...
A cute meditation on plastic: link
The Dabbawalas of Mumbai, the most efficient business in the world: link
If you want to do Big Data using top-notch math, you can only get Medium Data. Need common sense to go higher (in short supply in high-tech)
Eric Drexler: Physical Law and the Future of Nanotechnology link
Man arrested at Large Hadron Collider claims he's from the future link
Lawrence Foster performing a version for full orchestra of John Cage's piece 4'33" (1952) link
The Lightbulb Conspiracy link
Why are compassion and altruism good? The most "altruistic" countries have the highest suicide rates. Would altruism lead to extinction?
Another difference between the vegetable and animal worlds: plants feed on their own waste (eg their own composting dead leaves), animals don't eat their shit.
"Peru's Cordillera Huayhuash has been called the best alpine trek in the world" link
The metabolism of the vegetable world yields beautiful flowers, delicious fruits and nutritious nuts, and, at worst, dead leaves. The metabolism of the animal world yields disgusting stinking excrements.
The sexual behavior of plants displays a mindblogging variety, from hermaphrodite flowers to subterranean sex of aspen. Even ordinary grasses, of which there are dozens, employ the most bizarre strategies to mate.
Art has to be misunderstood by society in order to be great art.
Alternative forms of music/ Part1: iPhone Orchestra: link
Alternative forms of music/ Part2: Theremin solo by Clara Rockmore link
Alternative forms of music/ Part3: A documentary on instrument builder Walter Kitundu link
Art inspired by neuroscience: Laurie Frick link
Picture of matter falling into the depths of a supermassive black hole at the center of a galaxy link
One of the weirdest facts in Math: the volume of a sphere in n dimensions decreases to zero link
Due to how often and far we travel and how the lifestyle of each generation changes, our immune system has always been obsolescent
The flora and the fauna that had been separated when Pangaea split were reunited only in 1492 when the Europeans began colonizing America
When all the continents were united in one solid mass, the dinosaurs ruled. The mammals began the dominant animals only when Pangaea split.
"How Ready Are We for Bioterrorism?" link and read about Rabinow's resignations link
IBM reverse engineering the brain link
Winners of the Best Visual Illusion of the Year: link
The problem is overconsumption not overpopulation (Paul Ehrlich): link
Bill Gates vs Steve Jobs on Art: link
Roderich Tumulka's presentation of "Time in Bohm's interpretation of Quantum Mechanics" link
Roderich Tumulka's nonlocality in time link
GianCarlo Ghirardi's spontaneous collapse theory link
"A good traveler has no fixed plans and is not intent on arriving" (Lao Tzu)
Stupid quote of the day (month/year/century): "Every human life is worth the same and worth saving" (Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows)
Daniel Barenboim playing the Adagio Cantabile Beethoven's 'Pathetique' sonata link
Steven Pinker: "The decline of violence may be the most significant and least appreciated development in the history of our species"
Microsoft's "holodesk" that lets people physically manipulate virtual objects link
Malaria kills a child every 45 seconds in Africa
How "primitive" tribes of the Amazon use digital tech: link
A tutorial on quantum levitation: link
20-year-old Tibetan nun Tenzin Wangmo set herself on fire in China
Evolution did not design us to believe only true facts, nor to buy only useful products, nor to say only meaningful sentences
It took only one month to debunk the 1000th claim that particles can travel fastern than light: link
Collaborative intelligence: link
"The imperative to develop new technologies and implement them on a heroic scale no longer seems like the childish preoccupation of a few nerds with slide rules. It's the only way for the human race to escape from its current predicaments. Too bad we've forgotten how to do it." (Neal Stephenson)
The pulsar at the center of the Crab Nebula has emitted the most highly energized gamma rays that have ever been observed from a pulsar
A comet with ocean-like water: link
Another ridiculous choice for Nobel Prize in literature: link The Swedish academy really has to start reading literature.
Michael Daugherty's piano concerto Deus Ex Machina (2007)
High-tech has become the discipline of complicating simple things
Human creativity at its best: link
Charlie Rose interview with Aung San Suu Kyi and Desmond Tutu link
Biggest high-tech failures of the decade: Google Buzz, Google Wave, Palm, MySpace, Ask, Vonage, Segway, Sirius satellite radio, Google Nexus, Blackberry Torch, Apple Ping
In 1983,Stanislov Petrov saved the world link
Tibetan monks set themselves on fire link
Twitter bought Ori Allon's Julpan, a search engine that studies the way stories develop and how people react to them link
Free will and the physics of the city at Roger Malina's blog link
The Blue Brain Project, Henry Markram's attempt to reverse-engineer the brain link
Genevieve Bell on the future of computer technology link and on the digital economy link
In 1908 people in the USA mailed 677,777,798 postcards out of a population of 88,700,000 (the postcard had been invented only in 1900)
The interesting thing about this article on the Greek crisis is not that Greeks are committing suicide at twice their past rate but that even this double rate of suicide in Greece (6 per 100,000) is still only half of the suicide rate in the USA (10 per 100,000) link
Why and how to transition from wet-ware to substrate-independent minds, by Randal Koene link
"Wherever we are, what we hear is mostly noise. When we ignore it, it disturbs us. When we listen to it, it fascinates us" John Cage (1937)
Silicon Valley Space Center link
We found a planet orbiting two suns link
Make your own object link
Maps and clocks are the human equivalent of spiderwebs
The most amazing thing about the laws of nature is that you don't need to know them in order to survive. In fact, almost nobody knows them
Free will is possible only because the past has a low entryopy and the future has a high entropy.
The human microbiome as a potentially less-invasive human augmentation substrate for connecting the brain to devices link
Composer of the month: Octavian Nemescu link
The original protagonists of European colonization of the world were plants, germs, insects and excrement. Alfred Crosby: "Ecological Imperialism"
Post post-modernism link
Greatest living conductor? Yuri Temirkanov. Unbelievable what he does with musical scores link
Psychoacoustic research will make your living room sound like a concert hall link
Mass rape in Congo and then the victims are spurned by their own villages: link
The Geopolitics of the United States, Part 1: The Inevitable Empire by John Mauldin: link
Brazilians scientists claim that the Amazon has a twin river that flows 4000m below the ground: is there life in it? link
A study by the Technical University of Eindhoven found that half of the returned electronic devices are not malfunctioning: the consumer just couldn't figure out how to use them.
In 1763 Britain offered the whole of Canada to France for the Caribbean island of Guadaloupe
"It will take a thousand years for the frontier to reach the Pacific" (Thomas Jefferson in the 1780s)
The evolution of programming languages (diagram): link
In 1957 a 30-year-old engineer named Max Mathews got an IBM. 704 mainframe computer at the Bell Labs to generate 17 seconds of music and recorded it, the birth of computer music
Best live reporting from Libya: Al Jazeera English link
Oldest fossile microbes: link
"Virtual Doppelgangers: Psychological Effects of Avatars Who Ignore Their Owners" by J. Bailenson and K. Segovia link
Sony' home holographic appliance: link
Holographic video technology: link
Tibetan monk sets himself to fire in China: link
The richest man in the USA about taxing the rich: link
The amazing Midori Seiler "performing" (?) Vivaldi's Four Seasons on period instruments link
Robert Hazen of Carnegie Inst: minerals evolved (just like life) and living organisms induced much of their evolution. Presentation will be here link
Imaging the Hidden World: the Light Microscope (1984) skip the first nine minutes which are just technicalities: link
How many people can fly and land upside down on a ceiling? Don't underestimate the brain of a fly.
If you have all the answers, it means you didn't even understand what was the question. (paraphrasing John Templeton)
Article on google in NYRB: link
Multitasking lowers your IQ more than marijuana does: link (I'm not sure if this counts as an argument in favor of legalizing marijuana or in favor of outlawing smartphones)
How To Kill Yourself, Your Country And Your Planet kIn A Few Easy Stepskand Feel Good About It link
Video of Nyman's Water Dances: link
China's ghost economy: link
Pamela Z's videos: link , link , link
Paths are usually not made by the people who walk them. Walking people make shortcuts, not paths.
World's billionaires by country: link
Shengwang Du of HKUST confirmed Einstein's postulate that nothing can travel faster than light. Goodbye time travel. link
China introduces regulations that require bars, restaurants, hotels and bookstores to install Web monitoring software link
Animation by Dulcidio Caldeira: 600 balloons popping in rapid sequence along a 200 meter rail to mimick a flip book link
"Only when the tide recedes do you find out who's been swimming naked" (Warren Buffet). Counterargument: We're all naked.
Is China about to collapse? link
Western media under-report political unrest in China: link
1981 East Asia had the highest poverty rate in the world
Children who learn to play an instrument grow up smarter: link
Essays (Turing and Beyond): link (scroll down to the bottom)
First close-up pictures of an asteroid: link
Sheryl Sandberg: Why we have too few women leaders link
China's bee-wearing context: link
Maggie Nelson's "The Art of Cruelty" link
Physics is an illusion. What it reveals is the structure of our brain, not the structure of the universe.
No two snowflakes are alike because a snowflake is an accurate atomic recording of its fall from the sky to the earth.
Astronomers give tours of the galaxy as viewed in their telescopes. Google should give tours of the Web as digitized, minced, sorted and blended inside its server farms.
James Marsh' documentary "Project Nim" is a "study of primate behavior, focusing on the dynamics of power, sex and group bonding" link
The world is divided into the ordinary and the extraordinary. The problem is deciding which is which.
Jane McGonigal's TED talk "Gaming can save the world" link
Henrik Ibsen's nine-hour play "Emperor and Galilean" of 1873 finally premieres link
What we understand is not enough to understand why we understand it
Another Zaha Hadid masterpiece: link
Minimalism in 4 easy steps:Riley's Rainbow in Curved Air(68), Reich's Drumming(71), Satoh's Mantra(86), Nyman's Sax and Cello Concerto(97)
Janek Schaefer;s "National Portrait" is a 24-hour album containing 1000xMP3's stored on a USB circuit board housed in a tv remote control
My chat with anthropologist Jan English-Lueck, head of the Silicon Valley Cultures project link
Digital technology increasingly suppresses personal identity: we are creating a society of high-tech zombies
200 people drowned and nobody even knows about it link Worse nobody knows about the food crisis in the 3rd world
The conceptualization of time in computing by Melanie Swan link
The latest Robin Hanson-Eliezer Yudkowsky debate on AI link
World supercomputing capability more than triples link
Question of the month: why did kamikaze pilots wear helmets?
Good review of Aurora: link
Social silence and icebergs link
Article of the month: "The first stars, as seen by supercomputers" link (click on the pictures)
Free and famously good lectures on physics by Leonard Susskind. is.gd/eJovvl
Best classical recordings i've heard recently: MTT's Mahler Symphony No. 8 and BOAC's Steve Reich Double Sextet. Composer to watch: AdŠs
Rearden claims to bypass Shannon's limit on wireless communications link
Videos of Washington DC's DASERs (LASER's sister series) are available at link
"An Iconography of Contagion," art exhibition of health posters from the 1920s to the 1990s: link
"I don't smoke, don't drink, hate religion and war, the accordion and the death penalty. I only live for and in Beauty" (Juan Ramon Jimenez)
Since we came to this world we only heard lies. But it's the lies that make it interesting. The truth would devastate us.
The "tree in the forest" revised: What is the output of a computer program if there is no user to read it?
Music for Arctic Sounds in San Francisco on June 30: link
The most powerful knowledge is the knowledge that induces people to radically change their concept of what knowledge is.
720,000 sheets of toilet paper were produced for the use of the Chinese court in 1393 (Source: Bureau of Imperial Supplies)
Thu-Sun San Francisco Symphony: MTT conducts Beethoven's Missa solemnis link
Idea of the month: 3D shape recognition (#2 unsolved problem of cog science) based on how heat diffuses over surfaces link
The rare good news in US greentech link - maybe the USA won't be left behind after all
Is the vacuum (the zero-point field) conscious? link
Article in current issue of Scientific American: "The laws of physics may well prevent the human brain from evolving" link
"A man is infinitely more complicated than his thoughts" (Paul Valery) "A man is infinitely more complicated than his actions" (piero)
Conference in 2012 on the mathematical theory of incomputability at the Isaac Newton Institute: link
Paul Gilding's wishful thinking: link Obviously he does not know Silicon Valley's workers when he envisions future wisdom
"Mankind's ability to understand and control the forces of nature greatly exceeds our ability to govern ourselves" (George Soros)
Antimatter trapped for more than 15 minutes: link
Philosophy book of the month: Of Time, Passion, and Knowledge by J. T. Fraser (1975)
Cant' stop listening to Schnittke's Requiem and In Memoriam
The untimely truth tiptoeing across my mind is the thought that is never the same after you think it
We always forget that the longest living beings on this planet have no brain: trees and bacteria.
Opiate use increased 35%, cocaine 27%, cannabis 8.5%. Why do more and more people need to get high more and more often? link
"Consciousness and the Universe" a special issue of the Journal of Cosmology: link
Fareed Zakaria on Charlie Rose link good analysis of China/India/Arabs
Mainland China bans jasmine link
Those who are deafened by the present cannot hear the future (i don't remember who said this)
Why do we try to explain mysteries instead of cherishing them?
The real news is not that Osama has been killed but that C-Span is broadcasting Al Jazeera live
David Chalmers on the Singularity: link
What is the Dao of an Ant? (A tour of Cognitive Science) link
Grasp the meaning of meaningless things
Pictures of robot block party link
This is national Robotics Week: link
Stanford robot block party Thursday, April 14, @ 11:00-17:00 link
Success in solving a set of problems inevitably creates a new set of problems and a system that is incapable of solving them
Raising money for the Japanese people who were affected by the recent earthquake: link
By now we are so aware that the USA has an army of psychos that these revelations are met with indifference link
If confirmed, this is the most important news of the year: link
This year's Edge Question: What scientific concept would improve everybody's cognitive toolkit? link
There is a limit to human intelligence but there is no limit to human stupidity.
News from Atlantis: link
Japan's earthquake shortened days and moved Japan: link
(There are flower-shaped clouds, but not cloud-shaped flowers)
Emptiness is a cold midnight spent/ staring at the self-made tapestry/ of the firmament above the self-made/ coffin of the sheltering city
In a day that never ended/ the wrecked kite lifted by a whiff/ marked the end of all days.
The end of Time will be the moment in time when the end of time will be the moment in time when the (repeat)
Meditation on top of Double Cone (middle of nowhere, devastating hike, absolutely foggy): You know the route when you cannot see it.
Thank you Petra Verne for sending me this: "The time has come, the last time, to destroy the hate in ourselves." by Czeslaw Niemen
Is there an end to science? Science is not a catalog of certainties but an endless exploration of uncertainties.
It has become cheaper to produce/accumulate information than to understand it.
Time is the thing that acts on all the things that do not act on themselves.
The severity of a problem increases exponentially with the time it takes to realize that the severity of a problem increases expon... etc...
Einstein was wrong: God did play dice with the Universe. The question is: who won?
The only way to know what i know is to know what i don't know.
Would the world be a better place if everybody shared the same opinion, e.g. if everybody agreed with you on everything?
We keep changing the question but the answer remains the same.
Most of a person's life is about making sure that her/his world does not become just a ghetto.
"The world is a playground" (Indian-Persian poet Ghalib)
We change so much that we become the change to which we have to adapt.
Someone should invent a new science to study imaginary problems. And the real problems caused by their solutions.
In 1894 Ubu, an imaginary character, invented Pataphysics, the science of imaginary solutions.
Invocation/meditation: the world is simpler than the brain that conceives it.
My latest SlideShare upload : Women in History/ A History of Women link
The past that we never lived is a nostalgic premonition of the future that we forgot.
Stupid questions are the most difficult to answer.
just like the butterfly that set off the tornado. So the paper was actually a prophecy about itself.
but few people noticed the effect that the paper itself had: thousands of papers and books and tv shows have been made that mimic that title
The scientific paper with the best title: "Does The Flap Of A Butterfly's Wings In Brazil Set Off A Tornado In Texas?" (Ed Lorenz, 1972)
We dream unreal worlds. A computer dreams the real world.
In many langages the opposite of "young" and the opposite of "new" are the same word ("old", "vecchio", "alt", etc)
Progress is about technology replacing human skills, including the skill of socializing.
"Omeros was the crunch of dry leaves, and the washes that echoed from a cave-mouth when the tide has ebbed." (From "Omeros", Derek Walcott)
A comedian is someone who tells the truth. Truth is the set of all jokes told by all comedians in the world.
Facebook is part of the dictatorship of positivism (as in "be positive") that is taking over the Western lifestyle. A form of desperation.
Interesting that Facebook has a button for "Like" but not for "Dislike". Do we need to be told that we are cool? What are we afraid of?
interesting article about ancestor worship: link
What is the relationship between the horizon and a compass?
...and in which every conscious being is eating other conscious beings in order to survive; a world of pure cannibals.
Consciousness's drive to total knowledge will eventually create a universe in which everything is alive and conscious...
Interesting theory on how consciousness might have emerged: link
Ultimately, it's all about the gap between "I" and "me".
The Sun looked like a Hummingbird frantically beating its Wings to stay aloft the Clouds.
See Ernst Haeckel's Art Forms in Nature (1898)
Mathematics developed set theory, topology, differential geometry, etc, but not an exhaustive theory of cycles (eg vortexes, spirals, etc)
The difference between forever and never is both forever and never.
I'm impressed by this answer to my question: link
Is there a difference between forever and never?
The next time you say forever think of never.
Good article on the Earth's carrying capacity: link
Heard it at a conference: In 2006 the total global energy consumption was 15.8 terawatts. We will soon need more than one Earth.
We are overrated.
The seed is not the plant, and the plant is not the seed.
Civilization is self-organizing creativity that eventually transforms itself into organized mediocrity.
Thankfully we cannot understand the universe.
Most difficult is making sense of other people because they are trying to make sense of me, so the sense changes all the time.
THere is no sense in the world. It is our brain that tries to make sense of the world.
2009 was the first year in recorded history that no person was executed in Europe
(We speak as if we were one soul in one universe instead of multitudes of yesterdays in waterfalls of emptiness)
A fellow neuroscientist just wrote: "I believe my brain wasn't designed for science, so why did I choose it as the object of my research?"
Just got back from Central America, visiting precolumbian ruins. We underestimate how brutal those people were.
We are swimming in the lake in which future generations will drown.
Human civilization often unknowingly reinvents what nature has been doing for centuries. Does human civilization always recapitulate nature?
Good article on Xenakis, one of the greatest: link
History is the impossible becoming inevitable.
The meaning of life is the loss of meaning. We are programmed to find meaning in the loss of meaning.
Processes of decay and erosion rule the universe.
Must-read article on re-rape and autocannibalism in Congo (true - i went there) link
If god exists, s/he must be very disappointed that most people believe in god only because they are afraid of dying.
If you just follow the rules, you make no mistakes. If you try to create new rules, chances are you will make mistakes.
A brief history of love: a comma and a period.
Certainty is a by-product of confusion
Does an easier method to find information increase or decrease the motivation to create new information?
Globalization means the extinction of the "other".
Art was function in ancient times, representation in Greece, exploration in the renaissance, creation for the romantics, and now discovery
"What I cannot create I do not understand" (Richard Feynman, 1988) "What i cannot understand i do not create" (my ideal scientist)
The part is the sum of its wholes.
A colossal amount of creativity is prematurely terminated because it has no customers.
If we could get rid of the customers, there would be a lot more interesting startups with a lot more interesting products.
Knowledge is overrated, truth is underrated.
Knowledge is depreciating at an accelerating pace
Answers to most questions are trivial. A civilization may never find the answer to a question because it does not look in the right place.
Intelligence is measured by the questions you ask not by the answers you find.
Is an era defined by the questions it asks or by the answers it provides?
The greatest philosopher of the last century: link
The boundaries of my language are the boundaries of your world (paraphrasing Wittgenstein)
Philosophy is the art of turning solutions into problems
Einstein had the idea for general relativity on an elevator at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in Berlin
Darwin came up with a scientific explanation for evolution by observing the mockinbirds of the Galapagos
Galileo proved Aristoteles wrong by dropping balls from the leaning tower in Pisa, thus paving the way for Newtonian Physics
Poetry is the art of listening to silence. Poetry then turns it into signs that other minds turn into voices.
Silence is the sound of wisdom. Nothing speaks louder than silence. Nature is always silent.
Marie Curie said that the more we understand the less we fear. I think she got it all wrong: the more we know, the more we fear.
Einstein said that humankind cannot solve its problems at the same level of consciousness from which we created them
Adolf Wolfli,a patient in a madhouse, compiled an imaginary autobiography of 25000 pages, 1600 drawings, 1500 collages and 100s of songs.
Doctor Faustroll was born in 1898 in Circassia at the age of 63 and died the same year at the same age
is it good karma or bad karma when you happen to be in both places where they are dropping the only two atomic bombs, and you survive both? link
I am thinking of a whole number between 1 and 2.
The devil is in the details. Probably god too. But life is definitely not in the details. Life is in the whole.
For thousands of years in all civilizations of the Earth the dominant art was Poetry.
More sophisticated laws simply create more sophisticated criminals.
Death is the simplest of all mysteries
"The essence is absence" (from my book "Synthesis")
As the number of dictatorships decreases, the appeal of democracy also decreases
People define their identity by what they are not. That's what sets you apart from others. You are what you are not.
Something exists only because its opposite exists.
If life is a fight, what exactly is it that we are fighting against?
Mark Rothko: "without monsters and gods, art cannot enact a drama."
Wealth and security seem to make people unhappy. Maybe wealth and security are biologically "wrong". They go counter our genetic program.
What makes people happy/unhappy? Rich countries don't fare well in suicide rates. The country with the best social net (France) is worst. link
Jorn Barger's Inverse Law of Usenet Bandwidth: "The more interesting your life becomes, the less you post... and vice versa"
Clowns rehearsing each other's part and never performing the comedy in front of a real audience. We die before we can learn it.
Wisdom is being able to see the comedy in the tragedy.
The generation that is growing up with the GPS is rapidly losing the ability to map the territory.
The best music is silence. It is also the rarest.
The purpose of adult life is to give the child's mind a proper burial.
We are investing less and less in minds, because we don't need them as much as we used to.
The best books are those you don't want to finish reading because you hate the idea that they end (inspired by my reader Emanuele Maniscalco)
"Poetry is something more philosophic and of graver import than history since its statements are of the nature of universals" (Aristoteles)
It is the pursuit of happiness that makes people unhappy.
To become moral animals, Robert Wright wrote, humans must first realize how thoroughly amoral they are.
What will be the next human-engineered threat to life on this planet? What will people be scared of two or three decades from now?
It is getting easier and easier for human society to destroy the planet. The odds that we will succeed increase with industrial progress.
"We know what we are, but know not what we may be" (Shakespeare)
Most animals protect themselves from change; they fear change. Humans instead cause it. We value originality, exploration, innovation.
Is it genetic that we tend to think of original thinkers as superior people? What is the biological value of originality?
As a race, what makes us the same is what sets us apart: evil.
The closer one looks at the context the more diluted evil becomes. Evil acts are not the deed of one man but the product of a civilization.
If it's the intention that defines "evil", then the more rational a decision is the more evil it can be; the more irrational the less evil.
We could not agree whether evil is extreme madness or extreme rationality. Western law considers madness an extenuating circumstance.
Maybe the ultimate evil is to deny that evil exists and pretend that there are always justifications for what happen, as historians do.
"What makes it immoral if you lose and not immoral if you win?" (Robert McNamara, about exterminating civilians in wars)
I "discovered" a new route to reach the top of the second highest mountain in California. Why are we proud of exploring and discovering?
We are a noise surrounded by silence; and it's the silence that truly defines what we are.
There was a time when WRITERS exerted the greatest influence on nations. These days it's marketing that shapes the daily lives of people.
The production of souls is more important than the production of tanks (Stalin, 1932). He neglected marketing: marketing engineers souls.
Stalin said that writers are engineers of the soul. He was right. Except they are highly imprecise engineers who "engineer" by accident.
Readers of my books send me the most unpredictable emails. They misunderstand what i write and then are influenced by it.
The fiction of our science is the psychology of our religion.
No matter how far we look, we only see finite things existing for finite eras; and still we believe that the infinite exists, e.g. people who believe that immortality is possible
What is a telescope to blind people?
If we thought more highly of ourselves, we would not watch bad films and read bad books just because they are publicized.
Life is a question in the form of an answer.
There would be zero business for new films or books if everybody spent their lifetime watching and reading the (far superior) classics.
Marketing is a scary human invention. Marketing consists in erasing the memory of good things so that people will buy bad things.
In order to have people watch a new film or read a new book, they have to make sure that people will never know about old films and books.
Extraordinary people use words and tools to hide the truth and distort reality.
Ordinary people use words and tools to tell the truth and describe reality.
Fear of the world created the gods that created the world that we fear.
"Temos, todos que vivemos, Uma vida que ‚ vivida E outra vida que ‚ pensada," Fernando Pessoa
An increasing number of people live by themselves, drive alone to work, work in a cubicle, eat alone... they used to be crowded activities.
Back to loneliness: i think it truly defines our age. People have never been so far from family and had so superficial friendships.
Were we immortal, we would all commit suicide.
Modern life has turned family into an option and friendship into a transient quality. Hence loneliness and the need to organize spare time.
Removing the unpredictable from life means removing the very essence of the human experience.
Humans argue about what is true and what is not true. Other animals don't have this problem. They fight over resources (food, land, sex), but not over truth.
These days i'm more interested in regress than in progress. There is evidence just about everywhere. link
"History is a nightmare from which I am trying to awake" (James Joyce)
Life is not a journey, it is a destination (from my poem)
Yesterday i wrote a note to myself that i should never write notes to myself.
Eternity is the poetry of amnesia.
Only silence truly exists.
We are doomed not to repeat history but to never understand our role in it.
Being is in time. Even space is in time. We can control space but not time. In order to control time, we have to die.
The gap between reality and meaning in the digital age has increased.
I hate what i love. I love what i hate.
"Is there an ethics of curiosity ? Most Scientists would say: No. Most Artists would say: Yes" (Roger Malina at yesterday's LASER)
"All knowledge is conditioned by the structure of the knower" (Varela)
India has had three Muslim presidents, a Sikh prime minister and a Catholic party leader.
I imagine hell as a very crowded and noisy place. Think of Facebook :-)
For many people the most difficult thing is to be comfortable with themselves. Loneliness and silence are poetry to some, but hell to most.
Ideologies are sets of beliefs that help us believe the world makes sense.
Each of us is a lifelong project to build a coherent theory on top of a blatant contradiction
We are, first and foremost, vast contradictions.
In the age of Wikipedia and Google, ordinary lives are mostly overflowing with disinformation.
We are what we find, not what we search.
"Let the beauty of what you love be what you do" (Jalal ad-Din Rumi)
Robert Hanson on Futarchy: link
Mecca before Mohammed, where all "idols" were worshiped, is my ideal. Mecca after Mohammed, when all "other" idols became taboo, is hell.
I confess a deep antipathy for monotheism: I have always found the ancient polytheistic religions to be much more "civilized" and tolerant
90% of our cells are not human cells: they are bacteria (although they weigh a lot less than human cells). We are a collection of organisms.
The society of gyms, movie theaters, salsa classes, is the opposite of a creative society. It's just killing time while waiting for death.
1% of the world owns 40% of the world's wealth. Who owns 40% of happiness? 40% of creativity? 40% of morality?
We perceive subjects everywhere in Nature. Therefore spirits and gods. Therefore religion.
We don't perceive things as objects but as subjects, that's why we assign them a "mind" (nasty weather, computer sucks..)
Bolivia has 50% of the world's lithium, a key ingredient for batteries
Morocco has the largest reserves of posphate in the world. A key ingredient for agriculture. The world will run out of it in a few decades.
Can you believe that even Columbus wrote a "The Book of Prophecies"? He predicted the end of the world would come in 1658.
Ancient literature was meant to be recited aloud, for a group not in private. As literacy spread, we stopped listening and started reading.
The modern person looks forward to the end of the world because it means an end to loneliness, neurosis, alienation. Not bodily but mental.
The medieval person looked forward to the end of the world because it meant end to warfare, famine, disease.
A child without a toy is a grown up. Now that we have toys all our lives we never fully grow up. Modern society is a society of children.
"A man without land is nothing" (Irish proverb). "A woman without a man is nothing" (Chinese proverb).
Too many voices talking at the same time. We need better ears. We've invented tools to talk all the time but haven't improved the listening.
Listening to Bruckner's eighth symphony. Never realized how neurotic and hysterical it it. Bruckner foresaw today's industrial cacophony.
I travel a lot. I hike a lot in the wilderness. Is what I learn far from here worth what I forget about here?
Great civilizations are those that do NOT learn from the mistakes of past civilizations
We are a noise surrounded by silence. And it's the silence that defines what we are. Nobody really pays attention to the noise except us.
If you look close enough and long enough, everything is transparent.
Very few things are inevitable in life, not even life itself.
Intelligence is not about knowing the answers but about asking the questions
Is it a coincidence that nations with high alcoholic consumption have been the most aggressive? (Rome, Mongols, Britain, Germany, Russia, Japan, USA)
The brain of people who drink alcohol shrinks over the course of a lifetime.: link
"I have always imagined that paradise will be a kind of library" (Jorge Luis Borges)
The Greeks believed that destiny and chance determine success and failure. The USA view: your actions alone determine success and failure.
Chopin's Nocturne #13: the very definition of "melancholy"
The USA is creating an idiot-proof society. Europe is creating a genius-free society. Asia is creating a society in which the words "idiot" and "genius" are meaningless.
(Politically incorrect) Polls show that women (across countries) are less interested in international affairs than men: biology or culture?
I make a point of listening to silence. The best stories are there.
A skeptical physicist asked me "what do art and science have in common?" My answer: "They both come from the same mind".
Do routes end? Do stories end?
What Heisenberg's principle really says is that to pinpoint the position of something you need an infinite amount of energy
Pakistani author Mobarak Haidar predicts that Islamic extremism will destroy Western civilization and turn the clock back 500 years
We are a movie. Who is watching it?
Talent is overrated, i agree with Colvin's book. Good review: link
Understanding (at both personal or national level) is a nonlinear process.
We underestimate the ingenuity of idiots
If we could measure it, we'd find that the vast majority of the world's creativity is in the slums and poor villages of the developing world
The human race was not meant to have spare time: when you give it to them, people don't know what to do with spare time and waste it.
I recommend Alvin Toffler's The Third Wave about today's "blip culture" made of fast-moving disjointed fragments ("blips") alas people are becoming blips too - blips in a loosely organized friendscape
Silicon Valley calls "high tech" what has really become "low tech" or at least "boring tech"
A lot of modern music is about sampling and remixing: isn't that true of people's relationships too?
Nature is a poet that never uses the word 'I'
I joined Twitter in 2008, but, if you follow me on Twitter, you can only see my most recent tweets. The main reason why i remove the old tweets is simple.
Nobody reads the old tweets anyway. When is the last time you scrolled down to
read someone's tweets from a year ago? or even from a month ago? or even from
a week ago? So: why keep them?
All those millions of tweets are creating the digital equivalent of
pollution. Nobody ever "uses" them but they do occupy "space". Space might
(or might not) be infinite, but it still feels like a bad habit.
The only people who are interested in what we tweeted a week ago all the way back to the day we were born are a) stalkers, b) companies that want to sell us products and c) Twitter itself to sell advertising space to advertisers. I am not particularly fond of any of them and i think that Twitter should pay us if it wants to monetize our content.
You do as you like, i delete my tweets from Twitter.
All my past tweets are stored here. Please check them out: there are a lot of pointers to interesting stuff.
If you want to know what i have done in previous years, there's a whole website that exists precisely for that purpose: Scaruffi.com.
I also duplicate (with way better graphics) my most popular tweets on Tumblr: http://scaruffi.tumblr.com.
Thanks for reading.