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Daniel Estrada
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// There's nothing wrong with social engineering, with taking an active role in the construction of your social environment. The issue is: whose construction is this? To what extent is my role active; to what extent is this environment ours?
 
A Journey To Intelligent Design

Search and social network data scientists succeed by fragmenting and classifying us as individuals. They are the high priests of demographics and psychographics. But when their algorithms use our language to predict and direct our behavior before we, ourselves, have consciously made those choices, they cross the line into the zone of social engineering.
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Everything we do together is social engineering. That's just the kind of things we are. 
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Happy DNA Day! Did you know we can now edit the genome with a system called CRISPR-Cas9? Learn how it works with this video from the +McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT

#DNADay   #genetics   #DNA   #CRISPR   #MIT  
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// Mitosis accomplished.
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W.E.B Dubois explaining why Voting does not make a difference.

"""
I shall not go to the polls. I believe that democracy has so far disappeared in the United States that no “two evils” exist. There is but one evil party with two names, and it will be elected despite all I can do or say. There is no third party.

It costs three times his salary to elect a Senator and many millions to elect a President. This money comes from the very corporations which today are the government. This in a real democracy would be enough to turn the party responsible out of power. Yet this we cannot do.

I will be no party to it and that will make little difference. You will bravely march to the polls, and that also will make no difference. Democracy is dead in the United States. Yet there is still nothing to replace real democracy. Drop the chains, then, that bind our brains. Drive the money-changers from the seats of the Cabinet and the halls of Congress. Call back some faint spirit of Jefferson and Lincoln, and when again we can hold a fair election on real issues, let’s vote, and not till then. Is this impossible? Then democracy in America is impossible.


"""
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It's kind of funny really.  Over here we have compulsory voting.  Invalid votes, either concioous or otherwise, are listed as informal, typically run at 1%. 

In any case they had a referendum in Tassie, where they asked whether to dam the Franklin River above or below the Gordon.  They got aa 30% informal vote. and the government got the message the will of the people was for no dam at all.

So the vote really can send a message.

The trouble is that nothing good will come until the masses take an interest, and the parties have to appease the masses rather than the sponsors.
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Computers that know how you feel will soon be everywhere. "Personally, I'm not going to stop until this tech is embedded in all of our lives." 

"Starting today, Affectiva will invite developers to experiment with a 45-day free test and then license its tools. You remember Intel inside? El Kaliouby envisions 'Affectiva-embedded' technology, saying, 'It'll sit on your phone, in your car, in your fridge. It will sense your emotions and adapt seamlessly without being in your face.' It will just notice everything that's happening on your face."
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Shouldn't it be the computers we feel sorry for?  I mean now they will know how mad we get at them.
I envision many many Marvins in the future.
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What is the Self? Watch Philosophy Animations Narrated by Stephen Fry on Sartre, Descartes & More http://www.openculture.com/2015/04/what-is-the-self-watch-philosophy-animations-narrated-by-stephen-fry.html 
Gillian Anderson (The X-Files) speak on what makes us human, the origins of the universe, and whether technology has changed us, and Harry Shearer speak on ethics — or rather, you've heard them narrate short educational animations from the BBC scripted by Philosophy Bites' Nigel Warburton.
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Wow - Watched a whole raft of these clips. Done on various subjects, by different people. these topics are presented by the Open University.
http://goo.gl/jXOba5
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"Enjoy the unbelievable electric rush of interacting with arbys online? Love dipping our #crap in our other #shit? Who cares? Arbys: fuck this."

"Cry. Go ahead and cry. Nana ain't coming back. Neither is fluffy. Go to Arbys and eat some hillbilly boy's pet cow. The universe is cruel."
If you’re not already following the Nihilist Arby’s Twitter feed, that’s a problem you should go correct right the hell now.
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You have finally revealed to me the purpose of Twitter. I thank you.
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Blue period: Analyzing the color of paintings with R

While movies have been getting more orange with time, painting have been going the other direction. Paintings today are generally more blue than they were a few hundred years ago.
While movies have been getting more orange with time, painting have been going the other direction. Paintings today are generally more blue than they were a few hundred years ago. The image above shows the color spectrum of almost 100,000 paintings created since 1800. Martin Bellander used R to create the image, by scraping images from the BBC YourPaintings site with the help of the rvest package. He then extracted the spectrum from each of the i...
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The toughest animal on the planet

A rotifer is a small animal that lives in water and sweeps food into its mouth with small hairs.  There are many kinds, most less than a millimeter in length.  They can eat anything smaller than their head.

The toughest are the bdelloid rotifers.  These can survive being completely dried out for up to 9 years!  When they dry out, they sometimes crack.  Even their DNA can crack... but when they get wet, they come back to life!

Thanks to this strange lifestyle, their DNA gets mixed with other DNA.   Up to 10% of their active genes come from bacteria, fungi and algae!!! 

Scientists have found DNA from 500 different species in the genes of a rotifer from Australia.  "It's a genetic mosaic. It takes pieces of DNA from all over the place," said one of the study's authors. "Its biochemistry is a mosaic in the same way. It's a real mishmash of activities."

Perhaps because of this, bdelloid rotifers don't bother to have sex. 

Their ability to survive dry conditions makes them great at living in desert lakes and mud puddles that dry up.  But they also use this ability to beat some parasites.  When they dry out, the parasites die... but the rotifers survive!

On top of all this, bdelloid rotifers can survive high doses of radiation.  My guess is that this is just a side-effect of having really good genetic repair mechanisms.

Puzzle 1: what does 'bdelloid' mean?

Puzzle 2: what other words begin with 'bd'... and why?

Here's the paper that found 10% of active genes and 40% of all enzyme activity in bdelloid rotifers involve foreign DNA:

• Chiara Boschetti, Adrian Carr, Alastair Crisp, Isobel Eyres, Yuan Wang-Koh, Esther Lubzens, Timothy G. Barraclough, Gos Micklem and Alan Tunnacliffe, Biochemical diversification through foreign gene expression in bdelloid rotifers, PLOS Genetics, 15 November 2012, http://journals.plos.org/plosgenetics/article?id=10.1371/journal.pgen.1003035.

The  animated gif is from here:

http://merismo.tumblr.com/post/43868329996/gif-rotifer-with-cilia-on-corona-present-mastax

#spnetwork #bdelloid #rotifer doi:10.1371/journal.pgen.1003035
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Fascinating!
So, they don't senesce? Or reproduce? Where did they come from?
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> What do you see as unique and important philosophical issues that arise from the web?
One contribution of the web is probably a shift from the role of the biological individual as the primary unit of analysis to a dynamic ensemble of the biological and the wider technical environment. When this new "image of the (post)human" as a complex socio-technical assemblage is increasingly merged with a low-latency universalizing information space — the web! — that lets phenomena scale globally, all sorts of interesting and some quite weird things start happening, from memes to revolutions.

#plural   #identity  
 
"The web evokes equally as potent theoretical questions as traditional philosophy: How do we think about language when we can communicate with thousands across the world nearly immediately? Do we really think of the mind as "individual" when our memories are spread into collective data banks? In this way, the web is less a distinct area of inquiry rather than a core revolution in a whole network of concepts, a historical event that restructures philosophical understanding itself. In this regard, the best antecedent to the web in terms of philosophy is probably the invention of writing."

cont
We associate technology with the shiny and new. But humans have been using technology to change the environment and themselves since at least the lower
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+Daniel Estrada Now that you mention it ... I hadn't looked closely. Very strange collection to claim that it's about "the philosophical foundations of the Web." I don't see web in any of the titles. Perhaps they printed the wrong ToC.
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"""

What small part can a theory book play in such an endeavor? Well, theory books are about concepts. Now, a good fact is mostly true, but about some thing in particular. A good concept is slightly true, but about a lot of things. It’s a way of bundling up facts into patterns. We need new patterns, because we have new facts.

New theories are made out of old theories. Its about looking at the gap between the world and thought, and finding in the archive of past thought some patterns that might hold the present in some way that is both a bit familiar and a bit strange. A good theory shows both the present state of the world and the past state of thought in a bit of new light.

So when one wants to think and work in a situation that has some new facts – that is what the Anthropocene is – then one could do with some new theory, or new-old, starting in some neglected aisles of the archive. I just don’t think the hallowed names we read – or read about – in grad school or in the media are much use now. Most of our theory gurus are Holocene thinkers – from a time when the earth was stable – not Anthropocene thinkers – for this time when it is not.

If we are going to build a new civilization, one that can cope with an unstable world, perhaps we could start by looking through the ruins of the last attempt to build a new civilization. An attempt that failed. The Soviet Union lasted less than a century. The one thing one can’t fault about it was its ambition.

I start Molecular Red with Alexander Bogdanov. He was Lenin’s rival for the leadership of the Bolsheviks. After Lenin had him thrown out, he devoted himself to theory, science and science fiction. Here are some of the things that I think make him a useful theory ancestor for us now:

Firstly, he almost got a theory of climate change right, as early as 1908, and he almost figured out the carbon cycle, by 1920. Not bad for a fugitive Marxist theorist and amateur scientist. 

Secondly, he thought that labor had to defeat capital so that it could get to grips with an even bigger problem: labor’s relationship to nature.
 
Thirdly, he was not wedded to any dogmatic Marxocological theory. To be a Marxist was to think from the labor point of view, and to try and organize knowledge and labor collaboratively. Trust me, this is a way out of some very, very boring and interminable arguments.

It is an artifact of cold war thought that the Soviets lost and the Americans won. In Molecular Red I tell a different historical parable. The failure of Soviet civilization prefigures the decline of our own. They both suffer the same tragic flaw. The gleaming superstructures of this world, like that one, ignore their debt to a base made of social labor’s reworking of nature.



"""
Below is the transcript McKenzie Wark's speech marking the launch of his latest project Molecular Red: Theory for the Anthropocene, on sale today.  The good news is: this civilization is over. And everybody knows it. And the good news is: we can all start building another one, here in the ruins, and out of pieces of the old one.  The subtitle to Molecular Red is Theory for the Anthropocene. You can call it the Anthropocene, or the misanthropoce...
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+Carl Rauscher Or borg!
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Introduction
I've written under the handle Eripsa for over a decade on various blogs and forums. Today I do my blogging and research at Digital Interface and on my G+ stream.

I'm interested in issues at the intersection of the mind and technology. I write and post on topics ranging from AI and robotics to the politics of digital culture.

Specific posting interests are described in more detail here and here.

_____

So I'm going to list a series of names, not just to cite their influence on my work, but really to triangulate on what the hell it is I think I'm doing. 

Turing, Quine, Heidegger, Dan Dennett, Andy Clark, Bruce Sterling, Bruno Latour, Aaron Swartz, Clay Shirky, Jane McGonical, John Baez, OWS, and Google. 

______


My avatar is the symbol for Digital Philosophy. You can think of it as a digital twist on Anarchism, but I prefer to think of it as the @ symbol all grown up. +Kyle Broom helped with the design. Go here for a free button with the symbol.

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Daniel Estrada's +1's are the things they like, agree with, or want to recommend.
Santa Fe Institute
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Complexity research expanding the boundaries of science

Center Camp
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Center Camp hasn't shared anything on this page with you.

Augmata Hive
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experimenting with synthetic networks

Ars Technica
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Serving the technologist for over 1.3141592 x 10⁻¹ centuries

Burn, media, burn! Why we destroy comics, disco records, and TVs
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Americans love their media, but they also love to bash it—and not just figuratively. Inside the modern history of disco demolition nights, c

American Museum of Natural History
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From dinosaurs to deep space: science news from the Museum

Using Smiles (and Frowns) to Teach Robots How to Behave - IEEE Spectrum
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Japanese researchers are using a wireless headband that detects smiles and frowns to coach robots how to do tasks

Honeybees may have personality
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Thrill-seeking isn't limited to humans, or even to vertebrates. Honeybees also show personality traits, with some loving adventure more than

DVICE: The Internet weighs as much as a largish strawberry
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Dvice, Powered by Syfy. The Syfy Online Network. Top Stories • Nov 02 2011. Trending topics: cold fusion • halloween • microsoft. Japan want

DVICE: Depression leads to different web surfing
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While a lot of folks try to self-diagnose using the Internet (Web MD comes to mind), it turns out that the simple way someone uses the Inter

Greatest Speeches of the 20th Century
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Shop Google Play on the web. Purchase and enjoy instantly on your Android phone or tablet without the hassle of syncing.

The Most Realistic Robotic Ass Ever Made
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In the never-ending quest to bridge the uncanny valley, Japanese scientists have turned to one area of research that has, so far, gone ignor

Rejecting the Skeptic Identity
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Do you identify yourself as a skeptic? Sarah Moglia, event specialist for the SSA and blogger at RantaSarah Rex prefers to describe herself

philosophy bites: Adina Roskies on Neuroscience and Free Will
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Recent research in neuroscience following on from the pioneering work of Benjamin Libet seems to point to the disconcerting conclusion that

Stanford Researchers Crack Captcha Code
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A research team at Stanford University has introduced Decaptcha, a tool that decodes captchas.

Kickstarter Expects To Provide More Funding To The Arts Than NEA
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NEW YORK — Kickstarter is having an amazing year, even by the standards of other white hot Web startup companies, and more is yet to come. O

How IBM's Deep Thunder delivers "hyper-local" forecasts 3-1/2 days out
arstechnica.com

IBM's "hyperlocal" weather forecasting system aims to give government agencies and companies an 84-hour view into the future o

NYT: Google to sell Android-based heads-up display glasses this year
www.engadget.com

It's not the first time that rumors have surfaced of Google working on some heads-up display glasses (9 to 5 Google first raised the

A Swarm of Nano Quadrotors
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Experiments performed with a team of nano quadrotors at the GRASP Lab, University of Pennsylvania. Vehicles developed by KMel Robotics.