Saturday, August 30, 2003

I have been on the Mind Uploading Research Group mailing list for a few years. They are trying to do some pretty interesting stuff with the simplest member of the animal kingdom, caenorhabditis elegans. They seek to emulate or "upload" into computers the nervous system of these tiny nematodes, which have only 302 neurons and 95 muscle cells (the whole animal has 959 cells).

By accomplishing this, the hope is that techniques learned in this study will be used with larger and more complex animals (insects, salamanders, mice, and so on); eventually the family pet could be uploaded in old age and its computer brain installed in a new robotic body.

The obvious conclusion of this whole process is the uploading of a human being. When that occurs, the result will be a human-level artificial intelligence with a lifetime of experience. Whether that intelligence is the same person, something more, something less, or something else altogether is open to debate.

Friday, August 29, 2003

This guy touches on some more of the inherent flaws of the space shuttle. And he is oh so close to seeing the light...except in the last paragraph of his article.
Well, the final report on the Columbia accident is in, and it is a rather damning review of the culture of NASA. However, it does not really get to the crux of the problem: that is, that the space program is being run by the government. All of the problems that led up to the disaster of February 1,2003 stem from that.... ie it is a SPACEcraft with WINGS fercryingoutloud. why? because the politicians in charge think that flying a spacecraft with wings is sexy. I could go on, but I won't just now, as every time I get on this topic I only succeed in pissing myself off.

Wednesday, August 27, 2003