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From computational complexity to quantum mechanics. ... the no-cloning theorem. ... Quantum information is more like traditional economic commodities, like gold or oil or something. ... P=NP .. Can every efficiently checkable problem also be efficiently solved? /Scott Aaronson /15-03-02

The smartphone is the defining technology of the age ... It encourages renting over buying, trying out over tying yourself down, co-ordinating things on the fly rather than in advance. ... the devices really do bring people closer together. .. by ensuring that there is always someone to play a game with, ... People will live in perpetual contact both with each other and with the computational power of the cloud. ... planetary brain, telepathically shared by all. /15-02-27

Financial traders are in a race to make transactions ever faster. ... Through glass optical fibres, information travels at two-thirds of the speed of light in a vacuum ... hollow-core fibre cables ... a ship or other trading platform near halfway points between pairs of financial centres worldwide ... there may be an optimal speed for trading that today's markets have already far surpassed. /15-02-24

How to Live Forever ... It’s theoretically possible to copy the brain onto a computer, and so provide a form of life after death, Stephen Hawking said last year. Ray Kurzweil, ... 2045 Initiative ... What if what’s created, even if it has a copy of your brain, just isn’t you? ... if a copy thinks it is you, ... we lose consciousness every night ... if you think that our sense of self is illusory. ... when consciousness arises, namely from massive complexity and linkages between different parts of the brain. ... Meaningful thought arises only for the whole animal dynamically engaged with its environment ... The idea would be to encourage the brain’s activities to slowly begin migrating to a massively interconnected electronic brain. /15-02-23

Acoustical paradise. ... to design a more conversation-friendly setting. ... Each table is in its own sonic zone, ... A mirage of the Musikverein can arise almost anywhere, with a few swipes on a screen. The simulation may fall short of perfection, but it trains the ears to yearn for the ideal. /15-02-16

Intellectual problems from antiquity are being illuminated by insights from the sciences of mind, brain, genes, and evolution. ... and worst of all, something called “scientism.” ... the defining practices of science, including open debate, peer review, and double-blind methods, ... The first is that the world is intelligible. ... acquisition of knowledge is hard. ... partition plan proposed by Stephen Jay Gould .. “non-overlapping magisteria.” Science gets the empirical universe; religion gets the questions of moral meaning and value. ... We know, but our ancestors did not, that humans belong to a single species of African primate that developed agriculture, government, and writing late in its history. ... We know that our intuitions about space, time, matter, and causation are incommensurable with the nature of reality on scales that are very large and very small. .... The humanities would enjoy more of the explanatory depth of the sciences, ... urely our conceptions of politics, culture, and morality have much to learn from our best understanding of the physical universe and of our makeup as a species. ... /Steven Pinker /15-02-16

Claude Shannon .. What he showed is you can communicate reliably even though the communication medium is unreliable; that's what digital means. ... this threshold property, this exponential scaling. ... We have digital communication .. digital computation .. digital fabrication. ... 3D printing isn't a revolution; it's decades old. ... playing with Lego bricks and compare it to a state-of-the-art 3D printer. ... a child can make a Lego structure bigger than themself. The same way in the ribosome ... when you replicate DNA there's an extra step of error correction .. is the exponential. ... digitizing fabrication, coding construction. ... collaboration with the Venter Institute ... amino acids .. With those twenty properties you can make you. ... digitizing fabrication in the deep sense means that with about twenty building blocks ... /Edge /Neil Gershenfeld /15-02-10

emotional memories ... She could say with absolute certainty that that’s precisely how it happened. Except, it turns out, none of what she remembered was accurate. For now, juries tend to trust the confident witness: she knows what she saw. But that may be changing. ... the amygdala, in a sense, tell our eyes to pay closer attention ... the amygdala may also signal to the hippocampus that it needs to pay special attention to encoding this particular moment. ... The goal of memory isn’t to keep the details. It’s to be able to generalize from what you know so that you are more confident in acting on it. ... Konnikova, Phelps /15-02-10

only about 14 percent of English speaking professional philosophers are theists. ... National Academy of Sciences, composed of the most prestigious scientists in the world, show that religious belief among them is practically nonexistent, about 7 percent. ... because of the rise of modern science ... a biological component to religious beliefs ... religion is an adaptation that provides an evolutionary advantage. ... The other explanation claims that religious beliefs and practices arose as byproducts ... strong correlation between religious belief and various measures of social dysfunction ... In general, people don’t want to know; they want to believe. ... Why, then, do some highly educated people believe religious claims? .. for emotional reasons ... Studies also show that religious belief declines among those with higher IQs. ... Among the intelligentsia it is common and widespread to find individuals who lost childhood religious beliefs as their education in philosophy and the sciences advanced. By contrast, it is almost unheard of to find disbelievers in youth who came to belief as their education progressed. ... human beings need their childhood to end /15-02-06

mitochondrial replacement or three-person in vitro fertilization aims to prevent women passing on harmful mutations in their mitochondria /15-02-03

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