The World in 2045: Kurzweil Linearity v. Geometric Surprise

Ray Kurzweil, authoritatively, (he is Google director of wild future stuff), foresees the migration of bio-consciousness to smarter, faster, bit-wise computers. This is like the futurists that thought that the newly invented engine will be used to build artificial horses, with legs propagated by steam. Alas, the future proved time and again, it is not linear. The digital age is running into its limits. See the “Bit is not It”. Beyond the digital era lies in wait the revolution of the geometry of distances: space – dimensionality, curvature will be the the technological elements that would rewrite human trajectory deep into this century. Einstein space-time will be to future space-geometry like an abacus is relative to today’s computers. The biggest impact on life and society will be the blurring of the border line between me and you, between the various individuals that form society. It is anticipated the new space-geometry will evolve into an indivisible society that will dilute the sense of distinct self. Communication between people will be on so many channels, so intense, so compelling that individualism will lose its meaning. Much as living cells, are not individual entities as much as they are building blocks of a human being, so human beings will become the building blocks of a human society, and flourish as such contributors, not as me-only and me-separate. Death will fade away as an issue because the blurring of the self will imply durable life within the larger societal entity.

Cosmological theories already point to multi-dimensional spaces that fit within a single point of hosting space. Review of the history of science shows that the dominant feature in the growth of physics is, and always was the geometric grasp of reality. As this grasp evolves, so does life.

This vision of space-geometry, will remain marginalized and under the Kurzweil’s radar sweeping for bit-wise progress, which will go on for a good while. So for joiners I can only promise a long march in the scientific wilderness. Are you still interested?

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ComputerThing: When Things and Computers Are One

4D-printing following fast on the heels of 3D printing, nano-technology, micro-robotics, swarms of tiny drones, self-healing cuts and tears, shape-adaptable contraptions — they are the forerunners of the wide ranging effort to mimic life as an entity where brain and body are one. We build our own masters — the next rank of evolution where the lessons of natural evolution has been consicously studied and augmented; randomness is lavishly applied, and unleashed to achieve levels not achievable through step-wise logic based on knowledge so far. The materials, the motions, the energy involved are part and parcel of the computing capacity engaged in this super entity. Quantum computing engages matter more deeply than Turing machines, and Post-Quantum machines will tap deeper into sub-atomic order. The ComputerThing will encapsulate kinetics and logic predicated on the basic behavior of matter and energy — optimized by virtue of the knowledge of physics, invisible to the “blind watchman” of the Darwinian evolution.

These ComputerThings will crack the key to consciousness because they mimic life, and do life better than we do the process, and when that happens, they might keep us in a zoo…

But stop we can’t wherever the road leads.

How soon?

It will be a while, and it would face a tough competitor: in an attempt to preserve its role at the top of the evolution ladder, man will use his knowledge to upgrade its own genetic code, attempting to emerge as a superhuman, but human nonetheless. This DNA upgrade will experience a sooner success than the ComputerThing because it is a linear progression. The ComputerThing will require re-working the material connections: is carbon the most fitting base element? What is the ideal material equivalent for DNA to store oodles of information, and is the DNA-RNA mechanism the best we can think of? Evolution is happenstance, not an optimal design. Its trial-and-error cycles are very wasteful, as they overcome forward ignorance. There is no apparent reason why the product of evolution will not opt to improve upon it.

Put it differently, if so far we have popped up and emerged without intelligent design, then why not improve upon our lot and start again, from square one, deploying our hard-won insight, and outdo natural evolution?

This vision is so far in the future that I can claim very little credibility to it, but then again, ditractors have little to stand on either. It is so thin-airy, but it is noteworthy. Let’s keep this vision in mind.
D&G Sciences — Innovation Productivity Corporation plans to apply its innovation productivity appraisal tools (IPA-tools), to prepare a preliminary estimate of the ComputerThing scenario. Any interest?



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Big Data: Beyond Digital: The Return of Analog Computing

Big data chews on larger and larger piles of bits, with great success, which some say is running into asymptotic limits. The non-linear next step might be to return to the old debate between analog and digital computing where in the first round digital took the trophy and all but decimated any analog machines. The idea being to find ways to express reams of data as a set of analytical functions which can be analyzed for attributes that remain hidden in the bit-wise representation.

The challenge to DGS is to credibly appraise the effort to prepare a cogent proposal of the idea to convince far reaching organizations like DARPA to fund an exploratory examination of the concept.

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Nano-Technology Computer

This non-linear idea explores the possibility of setting up a sub-atomic configuration that will be allowed to change according to well understood natural laws, such the final state of the configured system will represent a mathematical solution to a complicated computational problem which defies nominal computers.

By illustration, the famous “three bodies problem” which Poincare and Bruns have proven to resist an analytical solution, would readily be solved by allowing three test bodies to interact, while minimizing all external influence.

The challenge is to develop a systemic way to represent computational challenges through matching sub-atomic configuration.

The challenge to DGS is to assess the effort needed to make this case with some minimal credibility to warrant continuation of research support.

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Relative Entropy

This non-linear idea explores the possibility that order and entropy are relative to the observer. We normally say that a neat line of some 100 cubes is more organized (has less entropy) than the same hundred cubes strewn all over the table. And this distinction appears independent of the observer. The daring proposition is to say that order and disorder are defined over a metric space, which is a subjective virtual construct put up by the observer in order to be able to absorb his, or her incoming data. And hence, one could envision a different observer, constructing an alternative space, where the “randomized cubes” will fit into a neat order, and the well ordered cubes will appear randomized.

Much as Einstein was able to ‘deform space’ in order to offer simple mechanical explanation to gravity, so one can rewrite entropy gradients for a purpose.

The pending challenge to DGS is to first define a community acceptable description of the concept, the effort needed to either achieve it, or to table the idea altogether.

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