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Month: January 2021

New MIT Study Says Artificial Intelligence (AI) Can Help Us Map Consciousness – News18

While many people are afraid of a hostile AI (artificial intelligence) takeover, experts are trying to find ways to induce more AI into medical and research fields. AI is already helping us with daily stuff in our smart homes, but can it help understand consciousness? Since the dawn of philosophy and social research, the origin of consciousness has always troubled scientists. How are we socially aware? How can humans do what they do but other animals cannot? Well, MIT is trying to answer that with the help of AI.

MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital collaborated on a study to link social awareness to individual neuronal activity in favour of the “theory of the mind.”

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New MIT brain research shows how AI could help us understand consciousness – TNW

A team of researchers from MIT and Massachusetts General Hospital recently published a study linking social awareness to individual neuronal activity. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time evidence for the ‘theory of mind‘ has been identified at this scale.

Measuring large groups of neurons is the bread-and-butter of neurology. Even a simple MRI can highlight specific regions of the brain and give scientists an indication of what they’re used for and, in many cases, what kind of thoughts are happening. But figuring out what’s going on at the single-neuron level is an entirely different feat.

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Scaling Kubernetes to 7,500 Nodes

We've scaled Kubernetes clusters to 7,500 nodes, producing a scalable infrastructure for large models like GPT-3, CLIP, and DALL·E, but also for rapid small-scale iterative research such as Scaling Laws for Neural Language Models. Scaling a single Kubernetes cluster to this size is rarely done and requires some special care, but the upside is a simple infrastructure that allows our machine learning research teams to move faster and scale up without changing their code.
Since our last post…… Read more...

La experiencia Gateway: Una Perspectiva de la Sincronización de los Hemisferios Cerebrales

1. Introducción. Para describir la técnica del Instituto Monroe para lograr estados alterados de conciencia (“Experiencia Gateway”) que involucra la sincronización del hemisferio cerebral o “Hemi-sync”, la forma más efectiva de comenzar es perfilar brevemente la mecánica básica que subyace en la operación de métodos como la hipnosis, la meditación trascendental y el biofeedback.

Es más fácil describir con eficacia qué es Gateway comenzando con una breve descripción de las técnicas asociadas que comparten algunos aspectos comunes con ella pero que, no obstante, son diferentes.

De esta manera, podemos desarrollar un marco de referencia desde el principio que proporcionará conceptos útiles para explicar y comprender Gateway por comparación, a medida que avanzamos.… Read more...

The Gateway Experience: Brain Hemisphere Synchronization in perspective

1. Introduction. In order to describe the Monroe Institute technique for achieving altered states of consciousness(the “Gateway Experience”)
involving brain hemisphere synchronization or “Hemi-sync”, the most effective way to begin is to briefly profile the basic mechanics which underlay operation of related methods such as hypnosis, transcendental meditation, and biofeedback.

It is easiest to effectively describe what Gateway is by beginning with a short description of those associated techniques that share some common aspects with the Gateway Experience but which are nevertheless different.

In this way we can develop a frame of reference at the outset which will provide useful concepts to explain and understand Gateway by comparison, as we proceed.… Read more...

Plataformas y el Problema del Huevo y la Gallina

Un negocio tradicional es un sistema cerrado en sí mismo: solo permite generar valor con arreglo a una cadena de transacciones o etapas. Una plataforma es un sistema abierto en el que -con algunas limitaciones- los concurrentes se benefician de dinámicas de red. Es decir, tiene exponencialmente más valor para los participantes cuantos más sean.

El problema fundamental de las plataformas es que no generan valor con sus primeros usuarios. Adolecen del problema ‘huevo – gallina’, que necesitan resolver. Esta es la verdadera barrera a la entrada que tienen, y la tumba de muchas startups.

Al mismo tiempo deben tener una cierta apertura que permita crear sobre ellas otras formas de generar valor (‘aplicaciones’) de formas no siempre previsibles.… Read more...

Platforms and the Chicken and Egg Problem

The fundamental problem with platforms is that they do not generate value with their first users. They suffer from the ‘chicken-egg’ problem, which they need to solve.

Without users there is no critical mass and without it no transactions are generated. They need to start from a certain degree of complexity in order to start and grow. This is the real barrier to entry they have, and the grave of many startups.

At the same time, they must have a certain openness that allows them to create other ways of generating value (‘applications’) in ways that are not always predictable. That is, they must have some degrees of freedom; enough for some creative chaos to take place inside them.… Read more...

Análisis y evaluación: El Proceso Gateway

Aprobado para su lanzamiento 2003/09/10: CIA-RDP96-00788R00170021 0016-5
DEPARTAMENTO DEL EJÉRCITO OPERACIONAL DEL EJÉRCITO DE EE. UU. GRUPO INTELIGENTE DEL EJÉRCITO DE LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS. COMANDO DE SEGURIDAD Y DE SEGURIDAD
FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, MARYL. Y 20755
9 de junio de 1983
ASUNTO: Análisis y evaluación: del Proceso Gateway.
A: Comandante del Grupo Operativo del Ejército de los Estados Unidos Fort Meade, MD 20755

1. Usted me encargó que proporcionara una evaluación de la Experiencia Gateway en términos de su mecánica y practicidad final. Cuando me dispuse a cumplir con esa tarea, pronto quedó claro que para evaluar la validez y practicidad del proceso, necesitaba hacer suficiente investigación y análisis de respaldo para comprender completamente cómo y por qué funciona el proceso.… Read more...

Analysis and Assessment: of Gateway Process

Approved For Release 2003/09/10 : CIA-RDP96-00788R00170021 0016-5
DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY
US ARMY OPERATIONAL. GROUP
US ARMY INTEL.L.IGENCE AND SECURITY COMMAND
FORT GEORGE G. MEADE, MARYL.AND 20755
9 June 1983
SUBJECT: Analysis and Assessment: of Gateway Process
TO: Commander US Army Operational Group Fort Meade, MD 20755

1. You tasked me to provide an assessment of the Gateway Experience in terms of its mechanics and ultimate practicality. As I set out to fulfill that tasking it soon became clear that in order to assess the validity and practicality of the process I needed to do enough supporting research and analysis to fully understand how and why the process works.… Read more...

The dualities: material / immaterial, spiritual / scientific, intuitive / rational , etc. are actually a fallacy. Same as matter and energy: its about different points of view. An illusion of opposites that is the result of our own limitations in perceiving the same fundamental reality.

“I would rather have questions that can’t be answered than answers which can’t be questioned”. – Richard Feynman… Read more...

Las dualidades: material / inmaterial, espiritual / científica, intuitiva / racional , etc. son en realidad una falacia. Como materia y energía: diferentes puntos de vista. Una ilusión de opuestos que es resultado de nuestras propias limitaciones para percibir una misma realidad fundamental.

From Mechanical to Organical Business Models

Most businesses and startups are designed following the traditional mechanistic thinking of the last two centuries. This approach assumes that the business works as a mechanism in which one piece engages after the other: from customer acquisition to profit. The problem: this has been obsolete for years.

The change is there for all to see. Nothing that does not work as a network can grow beyond a certain size. And that size threshold is getting lower and lower because big players like Amazon or Google are already imposing their dynamics on society.

Almost all large corporations have this obsolete “mechanical” structure.… Read more...

Modelos de Negocio Obsoletos: de lo Mecánico a lo Orgánico

La mayoría de negocios y startups se diseñan siguiendo el pensamiento mecanicista tradicional de los últimos dos siglos.

Este planteamiento asume que el negocio funciona como un mecanismo en el que una pieza engrana después de la otra: desde la captación de clientes hasta la obtención del beneficio. El problema: esto hace ya años que está obsoleto.

El cambio está a la vista de todos. Nada que no funcione como una red puede crecer más allá de cierto tamaño. Y ese umbral de tamaño cada vez es más reducido porque grandes jugadores como Amazon o Google ya imponen su propia dinámica a la sociedad.… Read more...

Focus on… Games Systems – Ludogogy

Image by Andrew Gustar from Flickr with thanks

It never ceases to surprise and delight me how the creators of modern board games are able to consistently push the envelope in how relatively simple materials can be used to create elaborate and beautiful game components to support themes and enable players to immerse themselves in the lore of the game.  The potential for cardboard has long ago moved beyond the limitation of the 2D board into the construction of 3D models of trees, ships, spaceships and so on.

One of my current favourites, ‘Wingspan’, contains components which represent eggs, a bird box from which food can be gained, dice showing different types of bird food, and of course several hundred (if you have the expansions) beautifully drawn cards representing a dazzling diversity of bird species.

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Toward a Serious Scientific Theory of Consciousness – Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence

Consciousness is the ultimate hard problem of philosophy of science. As of today, there is absolutely no scientific solution to the problem. The nature of consciousness seems ineffable: first person experience appears to be a completely different category of existence than objective external
description.

This dilemma has led philosophers such as Daniel Dennett to use the ultimate solution: deny the problem exists. Unfortunately, that solution never worked for me at school. The objective reality of bad grades is quite hard to deny.

Yet, we need not resort to Daniel Dennett’s ultimate solution. There are concrete things we can say about consciousness if we use the “many worlds” interpretation of quantum physics and the computer science concept of Kolmogorov complexity.

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A Theoretical Physicist Grapples With the Math of Consciousness – Walter Bradley Center for Natural and Artificial Intelligence

She’s not very happy with what she sees:

The currently most popular mathematical approach to consciousness is integrated information theory, IIT for short. It was put forward by a neurologist, Giulio Tononi, in two thousand and four.

In IIT, each system is assigned a number, that’s big Phi, which is the “integrated information” and supposedly a measure of consciousness. The better a system is at distributing information while it’s processing the information, the larger Phi. A system that’s fragmented and has many parts that calculate in isolation may process lots of information, but this information is not “integrated”, so Phi is small.

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2021: More troubles likely

Most people expect that the economy of 2021 will be an improvement from 2020. I don’t think so. Perhaps COVID-19 will be somewhat better, but other aspects of the economy will likely be worse.

Back in November 2020, I showed a chart illustrating the path that energy consumption seems to be on. The sharp downturn in energy consumption has occurred partly because the cost of oil, gas and coal production tends to rise, since the portion that is least expensive to extract and ship tends to be removed first.

At the same time, prices that energy producers are able to charge their customers don’t rise enough to compensate for their higher costs.… Read more...

Review of Framing Play Design


I’m passionate about play — its power and its importance. I believe that one of the worst ideas out there is the need to put away ‘childish things’ on adulthood. When we play, we explore and create things that can never come into being when we are focused on doing things right and achieving, and all the other things we focus on in our adult world.

So it’s wonderful to come across a book that embodies those principles and asks: how can we design for play within our structures of work and study? Where and how can playful experiences be better experiences?

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Comodidad, Seguridad y Mediocridad

La búsqueda de la comodidad y de la seguridad te hacen conservador. Estas actitudes configuran sociedades mediocres. Y por lo tanto con tendencia a empobrecerse.

La mayor parte de la gente son mediocres en lo que hacen por una razón. Juegan con reglas diseñadas para ‘capar’ el rendimiento óptimo. Escalan por escaleras tradicionales y sistemas diseñados para frenarles, y mantenerles en la media.

Pero desde hace ya algunos años la situación es incluso más desfavorable. En estos momentos seguir las reglas del sistema implica estar cada vez más alienado y esclavizado por cualquiera de sus manifestaciones: contenidos, deuda, comida procesada, ocio, etc.… Read more...

The Road to Conscious Machines is an accessible and highly readable history of artificial intelligence – New Statesman

In 2016, the animator Hayao Miyazaki – director of the films My Neighbour Totoro and Spirited Away – was invited to visit a video games company in Japan called Dwango. The technologists at the company wanted to build “a machine that can draw pictures like humans do”. Using software called “deep learning”, the team had created a 3D model of a human body that had taught ­itself to move around – albeit in an odd, inhuman manner. The technologists hoped the great director would be impressed by their creation – a character that could animate itself. Miyazaki watched the demonstration in silence, thought for a few moments, and then told them: “I am utterly disgusted.

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DALL·E: Creating Images from Text

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DALL·E[1] is a 12-billion parameter version of GPT-3 trained to generate images from text descriptions, using a dataset of text–image pairs. We’ve found that it has a diverse set of capabilities, including creating anthropomorphized versions of animals and objects, combining unrelated concepts in plausible ways, rendering text, and applying transformations to existing images.

Text prompt
an illustration of a baby daikon radish in a tutu walking…… Read more...