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The posts in this collection reflect ideas from my book Psychology of the Digital Age: Humans Become Electric (Cambridge University Press)
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UNCANNY ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE

There's a lot of discussion nowadays about how advancements in artificial intelligence will result in computerized beings with minds that resemble that of humans. In my opinion, that will never happen, if only for the reason that these beings are not organic, so how could they perfectly duplicate the functions of an organic mind?

But will happen, I believe, is our creating a synthesized being with a mind that in some respects mimics ours, but in other ways is mysteriously different. As a result, these A.I. life forms will feel rather uncanny to us.
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When he posted this photo, Alex Lapidus joked about how this person could be stepping into some kind of scifi transporter device. For me, it also captures how in this technological age we are all totally immersed into the digital realms created by computers and computer networks... what I still like to call "cyberspace."
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The Voyage of +Heiko Mahr

When Heiko came to see us in Paris, he could have hopped on a plane or a train like any normal human being. But that's not how your +Alien Abduction Friday curators roll! Instead, he appeared fresh from his Wormhole Transit Facilitator #WTF in a burst of Cerenkov radiation. It looks like he might have been abducted briefly in transit, but I'm sure They'll give that leg back when They're done with it...
Happy #alienabductionfriday !

AAF is brought to you by the crew of me, Heiko, +Jetski, and +Janice LaMere with +Ruby Warrior Terrier who also joined the adventure, while Captain Irene is on a long term mission, on behalf of the #gplusaliennation and Others Who Cannot Be Named. Also for #unsharpsaturday with me, Jetski, +Julianne Bockius, +Nadia Cantou-Pewinski and +Patrice Christian (+Unsharp Saturday v2.0); #blurshot with +Pavlik Andreïevitch Krylatov, +Kim Anglin and +delo projet; and an out of season #windowwednesday with +Jules Falk Hunter and +Cheryl Cooper (+#Window Wednesday).
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Another great photo by Heiko Mahr, only this time the idea (at least for me) is how our phone use can place us in a "fog" where we pay little attention to what's going on around us.
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A wonderful photo by Heiko Mahr that illustrates (at least for me) how we can become imprisoned by our devices...

Abbey Road - Revisited


A gang of blur (and sharp) photographers meet for in Paris and all I can say is that all I can say it was a blast.

Thank you so much +Françoise Dhulesia and Hasmuk for your wonderful hospitality and the invitation.

It was a really exceptional to meet people I know since up to 5 years from G+ in person.

Happy to finally meet you +Alex Lapidus +Linda Villers +Janice LaMere +David Q. Cohen #RubyWarriorterrier, +Margrit Schwarz and +Lucille Galleli

Hope it won't be the last time that we did this.

We visited the Foundation Louis Vitton and it was to me like big playground for us photographers, but also it hosted some exquisted modern art of the MoMA we had the pleasure to see.

One sculptural installation we seen was

"Inside the Horizon by Olafur Eliasson"

It was there that I enjoyed to revisit the Abbey Road - with just one modern "Beatle"



#parisG+BlurMeetup #paris
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AI ANIMISM

Some researchers in the field of artificial intelligence talk about the “singularity” as if its some kind of on/off switch. First it’s a mindless machine, and then presto: It’s a sentient computer-generated being with its own subjective perspective, self-awareness and will!

If only consciousness, self-awareness, will, and other such human concepts about the mind were so obviously binary and simple. Psychologists realize that things are considerably more complex than that, that sentience is not some unitary quality that magically popped into existence during evolution, monopolized by humans. It comes in all shapes and sizes, often surfacing in creatures where we never expected it.

Throughout history people have believed that animals, rivers, mountains, the sun, wind, tools, works of art, architecture, and you-name-it possess some form of spirit or soul. So why not afford that privilege to AI?

If we can learn to think of computer-generated beings in this way, to respect them in this way, we very well might prevent ourselves from abusing our machines in how we create, use, and react to them – an abuse that eventually blows back to hurt us.
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INTERNET SHAMING

The interview I did a year ago about internet shaming just aired on CBS Sunday Morning. Thank you for showing my book cover, CBS!
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THE COMPUTER HOMUNCULUS DEFENSE

One byproduct of contemporary neuroscience is the tendency to disown personal responsibility for some of the things we think, feel, or do – and instead blame it on a brain structure, as if there is a little person or “homunculus” inside our head who is the real culprit.

Comparing the brain to a computer, which is so common in contemporary science, reinforces this tendency by portraying the brain as a sometimes dysfunctional machine that defies our best intentions.
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