It has often been observed that drugs disrupt the mind’s free will. The addict has a one-track mind with no room for choosing. They have lost control. If there were a way to reignite their free will using an immersive environment that could help the detox process? Virtual reality (VR) might provide such an environment.
Suppose a humanoid AI robot and a person were the only witnesses to a murder. At the trial, they give contradictory testimony. Which one would you trust?
This is among the issues discussed in my forthcoming book Free Will Odyssey.
Haven't we all had the uncomfortable feeling that we have been trapped by fake news? Here are two ways to help you break away.
With every questionable news revelation, shut off your mind's news mode. Take a walk, read a chapter from a novel, play a game, or talk with someone about a non-news subject. With your mind reset, ask yourself, "Is this a real news or do I need to learn more?"
A good starting point in qualifying the news item and learning more is to check if the same news is reported by trusted news sources. Make a headline summarizing the fake news story and Google search it. See if there is confirmation of the alleged news.
You need to encourage free will, not subjugated will, in your thinking.
Free Will should be fresh breathing space for the open and inquiring mind. With free will, we should be able to unleash our imagination and be more creative. Some scientists say, however, that free will is a fiction—our mind’s wanderings are determined before we can exert independent thought. I think it depends on the reaction mode and kind of choice to be made. If you instantly retract your finger from touching a hot stove, that is a deterministic reaction, not free will. If, on the other hand, you are contemplating marriage and a marriage partner, that could well be a free will decision.
Maybe in a few years our minds can be connected to massive computers and the combination will have free will. Probably the computers would be in the clouds and the connecting link would be the smartphone.
This may be the theme of my next book.
Honeybees, which are of the greatest commercial interest, pollinate about a third of what we eat, including fruits, nuts and vegetables. Thirty-one percent of US bee colonies were lost in the winter of 2013 alone. Then, as the future of the honeybees seems dire indeed, the cavalry of the robots rushes to the rescue of the flowering plants and trees. Although they are not yet deployed into the waiting blossoms, they already have a name: robobees.
The current leader in robobees technology is a team at Harvard University. In May 2013, their School of Engineering and Applied Sciences announced that an experimental prototype of the robobee made its first controlled flight. Half the size of a paperclip, weighing less than a tenth of a gram, it powered upward, hovered on its delicate flapping wings, and flew away.
Writing in the Scientific American, the team leaders said, “In 2009 the three of us began to seriously consider what it would take to create a robotic bee colony. We wondered if mechanical bees could replicate not just an individual’s behavior but the unique behavior that emerges out of interactions among thousands of bees. We have now created the first RoboBees—flying bee-size robots—and are working on methods to make thousands of them cooperate like a real hive.”
A major engineering breakthrough was finding a way to power the high speed flapping of the 3 cm wings. The solution was piezoelectric effect actuators. Electric fields applied to tiny ceramic strips cause them to flap the bee’s wings at 120 times per second.
Read more at the Winter of the Genomes website. It can be ordered on Amazon.
I'm both bored and disgusted with the steady stream of half-truths and outright lies from the presidential candidates. Since we are a pioneering nation and leaders in computer technology, why not run IBM's Watson for President?
Actually, there is a website watson2016.com promoting just that. They say:
"The Watson 2016 Foundation is an independent organization formed for the advocacy of the artificial intelligence known as Watson to run for President of The United States of America. It is our belief that Watson’s unique capabilities to assess information and make informed and transparent decisions define it as an ideal candidate for the job responsibilities required by the president..."
What do you think? Put Watson in the White House as a write-in candidate!
When a country collapses, often it is due to a combination of a critical decline of its resources, growing economic losses, and an unwieldy and complex government which, even if it has good intentions, can’t change the Titanic’s course in time.
Are we in the early stages of this now? Is that why the general population, who may be more aware of this emerging catastrophe than the media would have us believe, are so distrustful of their business-as-usual government?
This is a dialogue where truth should be foremost, but it has been lost in invective.
My father, who was an artist and creative inventor, was left-handed like Leonardo da Vinci. They were both right-brained. I'm not sure what it all means, but I thought you might like to know.
See more in my book, MegaMinds: How to Create and Invent in the Age of Google. It describes how people think creatively and how to use the computer clouds for more success. Steps and examples provide practical guidance for the reader’s projects. A number of people, industries, and development areas are discussed. Larry Kilham reviews the major thinkers such as da Vinci, Edison and Einstein and then moves on to the latest in computer-aided thinking. He reviews artificial intelligence and highlights its limitations and then goes on to explore the possibilities offered by Google and Web-based intelligence. To read the whole book, click here.
Before we get to computers, let’s see some examples of how truth is handled in everyday life.
“When your head says one thing and your whole life says another, your head always loses,” proclaimed
Humprey Bogart as Frank McCloud in Key Largo (1948). Your whole life that Bogart refers to is all the information relating to an issue you have accumulated over a lifetime. This is a huge amount of information distilled to an essence, which may well closely approximate the truth about the issue.
You are unlikely to find and express your version of the truth unless you are unfettered in an environment of liberty. José Martí, the Cuban philosopher and poet (1853-1895), got to the heart of the matter when he wrote, “Liberty is the right of every man to be truthful…” Ironically, the absence of liberty today in Cuba shows up as the lack of truthfulness there.
This same relationship is manifest in a wide variety of human endeavors. For example:
Politics Politicians, at the least, must compromise their actions originally based on truth, for actions based on expediency. As the saying goes, “Politics is the art of compromise.”
Science Almost all scientists are concerned about criticism and advancement, so they prefer peer-acceptable results over pathbreaking scientific advancements. They become intellectually trapped when in the university and related research institutions. Albert Einstein (1879-1955), on the other hand, did most of his most creative work while employed as a clerk in the Swiss patent office over the years 1903-1906. His productivity seems to have diminished after he joined universities later on.
The Military Generals and admirals must trade their best judgement about military strategy, the truth about when, where and how to win, for survival at the hands of their political masters. The various American conflicts after World War II are good examples of this.
Now, about the computers getting involved in the search for truth:
Artificial intelligence (AI) introduces a new factor into the truth realm. Computers that think with AI, do not have biases against seeking and stating the truth. Non-computer biases against the truth include emotion, egotism, and self-preservation.
As access to databases becomes comprehensive, such as seems will be the case on Google search, and sophisticated search and analysis systems such as IBM’s Watson become more comprehensive, computers will be ever more able to separate non-truths from truths.
How will a computer know a truth to be the truth when it produces it? People will become more concerned about this because, in a world of big data, they might come to trust only what can be verified electronically.
To make new theories, new inventions, and other great creations, we have to do better than adjusting existing theories and designs. We must move out of our conscious world and focus our mind in a new place occupied only by the new creation.
When an inventor comes up with a truly novel idea or insight, he or she has been exploring relationships, patterns, and associations until a productive interplay of ideas, images, and data of all kinds is found. That encouragement signals the brain that the chase is on. The mind is to be projected to a special little world encompassed by this project.
Einstein placed himself in speeding trains, moving clocks and elevators in space. This was more than metaphorical thinking; it was a mind transforming itself to another place. Einstein's strength came from his imagination and creativity.
My father, Peter Kilham, invented a phenomenally successful bird feeder that is the very familiar plastic tube with metal perches. He started by imaging himself to be a bird on a perch. Then he envisioned a geometry that would be most accommodating to the bird. Only after the bird was satisfied did he select the materials and manufacturing processes to make an attractive and economical product.
Very popular for some reason:
Larry Kilham is a Sloan School of Management graduate from MIT, received three patents, and has founded two high-tech companies. Many of his product designs required innovative use of computers, and as early as the 1960s he was researching artificial intelligence (AI).