Martin Rees has an interesting article at Nautilus: When We Find Aliens, We Might Find Something Like the Borg This September, a team of astronomers noticed that the light from a distant star is flickering in a highly irregular pattern.1 They considered the possibility that comets, debris, and impacts could account for their observations, but each of … Continue reading Why alien life will probably be engineered life
I love this SMBC on the Chinese room thought experiment. Click through for full sized version and the red caption button. Source: Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal My regular readers know I'm not a big fan of the Chinese room thought experiment. I think it only confirms whatever intuitions you already have. If you think intelligence … Continue reading SMBC: Chinese room
Neuroscientist Kenneth Miller has an interesting post at the New York Times discussing the feasibility of mind uploading: I am a theoretical neuroscientist. I study models of brain circuits, precisely the sort of models that would be needed to try to reconstruct or emulate a functioning brain from a detailed knowledge of its structure. I … Continue reading The feasibility of mind uploading
James Hamblin has an article in The Atlantic, published last year, advocating that dieters should focus on eating healthy foods, and not worry about counting calories. The proposed new FDA nutrition labels make the calorie number larger. That seems like a mistake. Focusing on calories puts the emphasis in the wrong place. The biochemistry is complex, but the … Continue reading Don’t forget calories, just don’t focus on them as the only important thing.