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Cytaty   ostatni miesiąc   wszystkie   all quatations, since 2014 Thx to: 3 Quarks Daily

Beauty .. Rethink Evolution
 …  bowerbird bower .. is nothing less than art
 …  This extravagance is also an affront to the rules of natural selection.
 …  species have conspicuous, metabolically costly and physically burdensome sexual ornaments
 …  To reconcile such splendor with a utilitarian view of evolution, biologists have favored the idea that beauty in the animal kingdom is not mere decoration — it’s a code.
 …  indicators of a potential mate’s advantageous qualities
 …  Charles Darwin himself disagreed with this theory.
 …  Darwin .. Animals, he believed, could appreciate beauty for its own sake.
 …  Now .. biologists is reviving Darwin’s neglected brainchild. Beauty, they say, does not have to be a proxy for health or advantageous genes. Sometimes beauty is the glorious but meaningless flowering of arbitrary preference.
 …  And that innate sense of beauty itself can become an engine of evolution, pushing animals toward aesthetic extremes.
 …  aesthetic preference that has nothing to do with survival whatsoever.
 …  how an animal’s eyes and brain shape its perceptions of reality and how its unique way of experiencing the world can, over time, profoundly alter both its physical form and its behavior.
 …  two environments governing the evolution of sentient creatures: an external one, which they inhabit, and an internal one, which they construct. To solve the enigma of beauty, to fully understand evolution, we must uncover the hidden links between those two worlds.
 …  our visual system, for example, may be wired to notice symmetry.
 …  in humans, as in birds, many types of physical beauty and sexual desire have arbitrarily co-evolved without reference to health or fertility.
 …  Beauty is a dialogue between perceiver and perceived.
 …  it is the impulse to recreate water lilies with oil and canvas; it is the need to place roses on a grave. /19-01-13


Unprovability comes to machine learning
 …  1931 .. Kurt Gödel
 …  continuum hypothesis .. neither proved nor refuted
 …  machine learning .. shares this limitation
 …  probably approximately correct (PAC)
 …  Vapnik–Chervonenkis (VC) dimension, and, in general, results relating learnability to complexity are sometimes referred to as Occam’s-razor theorems
 …  connection between machine learning and data compression .. The intuition is that, if a training sample labelled by a function from some family can always be compressed, the family must in some sense have low complexity, and therefore be learnable.
 …  The set that the authors ultimately use in their work is the unit interval, which is the set of real numbers between 0 and 1. Their results imply that the finite subsets of the unit interval have monotone-compression schemes, and therefore are learnable in EMX, if and only if the continuum hypothesis is true, which is known to be unprovable.
 …  we do now know that we should be careful when introducing new models of learning.
 …  will bring to the field of machine learning a healthy dose of humility, even as machine-learning algorithms continue to revolutionize the world around us. /19-01-13


Science 04 Jan 2019: Vol. 363, Issue 6422, pp. 78-80
An elephant-sized Late Triassic synapsid with erect limbs
Tomasz Sulej, Grzegorz Niedźwiedzki
References (AW: nieważne gdzie się publikuje)
64. M. Świło, thesis, Uniwersytet Wrocławski, Wrocław, 1–59 (2010)
65. M. Świło, Znaleziska szczątków rekinów z Lipia Śląskiego. In Materiały z XXI Konferencji Naukowej Sekcji Paleontologicznej PTG „Kopalne biocenozy w czasie i przestrzeni”, Żarki-Letnisko, 84 (2010b)
66. M. Świło, J. Kowalski, Mikroskamieniałości kręgowców z Lipia Śląskiego. In Materiały do III Konferencji „Młodzi w Paleontologii”, Instytut Botaniki PAN, Kraków, 42 (2011). /19-01-08


The Beautiful Mind-Bending of Stanislaw Lem
 …  In his autobiographical essay “Chance and Order,” which appeared in The New Yorker, in 1984, Lem recalls how as an only child growing up in Lvov, Poland, he amused himself by creating passports, certificates, permits, government memos, and identification papers. Equipped with these eccentric toys,
 …  “Summa Technologiae,” from 1964 .. Thomas Aquinas, in his thirteenth century “Summa Theologica,”
 …  Alan Turing’s imitation game as imagined in his epochal 1950 essay, “Computing Machinery and Intelligence.”
 …  Lem of a poet of “scientific terminology” /19-01-07


brain produces a continuous stream of unconscious predictions
 …  Freud
 …  human beings are driven by dark emotional forces over which they have little or no control
 …  the secret desires of the unconscious.
 …  Pixar film Inside Out .. hardly be less accurate
 …  conscious and the unconscious processes do not usually operate in opposition
 …  They are not even separate spheres, as Freud’s later classification into the ego, id and superego would suggest. Rather there is only one mind
 …  even our most reasonable thoughts and actions mainly result from automatic, unconscious processes.
 …  to function smoothly in the world, and becoming conscious when predictions fail
 …  ‘heaven is a place where nothing, nothing ever happens’? Well, that’s the brain’s preferred state because it is energy- and time-efficient.
 …  predictive errors equal surprise equals consciousness
 …  The autopilot in our brain—not consciousness—makes us what we are. /19-01-06


The digital revolution isn’t over but has turned into something else
 …  George Dyson
 …  Nature uses digital coding for the storage, replication, recombination, and error correction of sequences of nucleotides, but relies on analog coding and analog computing for intelligence and control. No programming, no code. To those seeking true intelligence, autonomy, and control among machines, the domain of analog computing, not digital computing, is the place to look.
 …  Digital computing, intolerant of error or ambiguity, depends upon precise definitions and error correction at every step. Analog computing not only tolerates errors and ambiguities, but thrives on them.
 …  Digital computers, in a technical sense, are analog computers, so hardened against noise that they have lost their immunity to it.
 …  Analog computers embrace noise; a real-world neural network needing a certain level of noise to work.
 …  Their models are no longer models. The search engine is no longer a model of human knowledge, it is human knowledge.
 …  No one is at the controls.
 …  What deserves our full attention is not the success of a few companies that have harnessed the powers of hybrid analog/digital computing, but what is happening as these powers escape into the wild and consume the rest of the world.
 …  The next revolution will be the ascent of analog systems over which the dominion of digital programming comes to an end. Nature’s answer to those who sought to control nature through programmable machines is to allow us to build machines whose nature is beyond programmable control. /19-01-06


Vaccines Cause Autism: The Lie That Never Dies
 …  A crucial and indisputable fact about the “vaccines cause autism” narrative is that it is founded on fraudulent research.
 …  lie was based upon only 12 children, but refuting this lie by disproving this fraudulent research required studies that now include literally millions of children.
 …  the actual cause of autism is not yet known.
 …  It is also instructive to study the proposed “causes” of Down Syndrome prior to 1959, when the actual cause became known. For example, there was considerable belief that “retroflection in the uterus” was a key cause. /19-01-06


Infinity: New Research Frontiers   eds. Michael Heller, W. Hugh Woodin
Introduction, Rudy Rucker:
 …  the starting point of the metaphysical notion of infinity is the notion of absolute indeterminacy. .. the metaphysical infinite is a domain in which the principle of noncontradiction fails, and both A and the negation of A can be true. .. things such as numbers, matter, space, or time can never really attain to a truly metaphysical infinitude. .. “We see here, then, that between the mathematical and the metaphysical senses of ‘infinite’ there exists not merely a distinction, but very nearly an opposition…any possible analogy is at best pictorial, affective, and immeasurably remote.”
 … ת = {ℵ0,...,ℵ1,...,ℵn}        (ת - Tav)
This ת, Georg Cantor claimed, is God, the creative source of all quantities existing in the world, and an intuitive insight of God is possible.

Earth science .. Anthropocene
The broiler chicken as a signal of a human reconfigured biosphere
Carys E. Bennett, Richard Thomas, Mark Williams, Jan Zalasiewicz, Matt Edgeworth, Holly Miller, Ben Coles, Alison Foster, Emily J. Burton and Upenyu Marume
Changing patterns of human resource use and food consumption have profoundly impacted the Earth’s biosphere. Until now, no individual taxa have been suggested as distinct and characteristic new morphospecies representing this change. Here we show that the domestic broiler chicken is one such potential marker. Human-directed changes in breeding, diet and farming practices demonstrate at least a doubling in body size from the late medieval period to the present in domesticated chickens, and an up to fivefold increase in body mass since the mid-twentieth century. Moreover, the skeletal morphology, pathology, bone geochemistry and genetics of modern broilers are demonstrably different to those of their ancestors. Physical and numerical changes to chickens in the second half of the twentieth century, i.e. during the putative Anthropocene Epoch, have been the most dramatic, with large increases in individual bird growth rate and population sizes. Broiler chickens, now unable to survive without human intervention, have a combined mass exceeding that of all other birds on Earth; this novel morphotype symbolizes the unprecedented human reconfiguration of the Earth’s biosphere. /18-12-30


AlphaZero .. a new age of insight
 …  Deep Blue could evaluate 200 million positions per second.
 …  it played like a machine, brutally and materialistically. It could out-compute Mr. Kasparov, but it couldn’t outthink him.
 …  Stockfish and Komodo, still play in this inhuman style.
 …  these chess “engines” have no real understanding of the game.
 …  tremendously fast and strong, but utterly lacking insight.
 …  All of that has changed with the rise of machine learning.
 …  AlphaZero discovered the principles of chess on its own and quickly became the best player ever.
 …  AlphaZero seemed to express insight. It played like no computer ever has, intuitively and beautifully, with a romantic, attacking style.
 …  In some games it paralyzed Stockfish and toyed with it.
 …  Grandmasters had never seen anything like it. AlphaZero had the finesse of a virtuoso and the power of a machine.
 …  an awesome new kind of intelligence.
 …  By discovering the principles of chess on its own, AlphaZero developed a style of play that “reflects the truth” about the game rather than “the priorities and prejudices of programmers,” Mr. Kasparov wrote
 …  machine learning could be applied to medical diagnosis.
 …  What is frustrating about machine learning, however, is that the algorithms can’t articulate what they’re thinking.
 …  AlphaInfinity
 …  For human mathematicians and scientists, this day would mark the dawn of a new era of insight.
 …  Suppose that deeper patterns exist to be discovered — in the ways genes are regulated or cancer progresses
 …  If AlphaInfinity could identify and understand them, it would seem to us like an oracle.
 …  AlphaInfinity could cure all our diseases, solve all our scientific problems and make all our other intellectual trains run on time. We did pretty well without much insight for the first 300,000 years or so of our existence as Homo sapiens.
 …  the golden era of human insight, this glorious interlude, a few thousand years long, between our uncomprehending past and our incomprehensible future. /18-12-29


Albert Einstein’s God Letter
 …  Is there a God? Do I have free will?
 …  Religion vs Science debate
 …  Einstein did have views about God, but he was a physicist, not a moral philosopher
 …  “God does not play dice with the universe” is his best-known aperçu on the topic—he seems to have held a standard belief for a scientist of his generation.
 …  He regarded organized religion as a superstition, but he believed that, by means of scientific inquiry, a person might gain an insight into the exquisite rationality of the world’s structure, and he called this experience “cosmic religion.”
 …  “Cosmic religion” has nothing to do with morality or free will or sin and redemption.
 …  The reason that God does not play dice in Einstein’s universe is that physical laws are inexorable.
 …  there is no uncaused cause
 …  The only mystery is why there is something when there could be nothing.
 …  Einstein says that he is happy being a Jew, but that he sees nothing special about Jewishness.
 …  The word God, he says, is “nothing more than the expression and product of human weakness,” and the Hebrew Bible is a collection of “honorable, but still purely primitive legends.”
 …  The word that he uses is “primitiven”—that is, “primitive,” meaning pre-scientific.
 …  He is saying that it doesn’t matter what our religious or our philosophical commitments are. The only thing that matters is how we treat one another. /18-12-28


Harari .. on the revolutionary impact of artificial intelligence.
 …  For the first time in history we have absolutely no idea how the world will look in 30 years.
 …  We trust the Google algorithm and we lose the ability to search for information independently.
 …  We should never underestimate human stupidity.
 …  any human emotion, are in the end just a biochemical process.
 …  almost all traffic accidents are because of humans making bad decisions.
 …  Hamlet just takes out his cellphone and asks Siri what to do?
 …  You make good decisions, you go to heaven. You make bad decisions, you go to hell.
 …  The liberal story is based on the ideal and the notion of free will, .. But science is now telling us there is no such thing as free will. It’s a myth.
 …  science doesn’t even understand the meaning of free will. We don’t know of any free processes in nature. We know only two types of processes in nature. We know of deterministic processes and random processes.
 …  randomness isn’t freedom
 …  Our desires are shaped by both nature and culture in ways that are beyond the understanding and control of individuals.
 …  of my free will, of my free spirit. But then you become the easiest person to hack and to manipulate.
 …  Most of the efforts give the government or corporations the ability to monitor us. But there is no technical problem in reversing the direction of the surveillance.
 …  three simple statements. Things are better than ever before. Things are still quite bad. Things can get much worse.
 …  Science and technology guarantee only one thing. And this thing is power. Humankind is going to become more powerful. /18-12-27



Impossible Friendships

For example, with someone who no longer is,
who exists only in yellowed letters.

Or long walks beside a stream,
whose depths hold hidden

porcelain cups—and the talks about philosophy
with a timid student or the postman.

A passerby with proud eyes
whom you’ll never know.

Friendship with this world, ever more perfect
(if not for the salty smell of blood).

The old man sipping coffee
in St.-Lazare, who reminds you of someone.

Faces flashing by
in local trains—

the happy faces of travelers headed perhaps
for a splendid ball, or a beheading.

And friendship with yourself
—since after all you don’t know who you are.

by Adam Zagajewski from Eternal Enemies, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, LLC, translated by Clare Cavanagh/3 Quarks Daily/18-12-23


differences in the humanities and sciences .. intensified
 …  Developments in cognitive neuroscience and other fields — from sophisticated brain-imaging techniques to increasingly detailed knowledge of human genetics — promise to revolutionize our knowledge of human behavior.
 …  accuse the humanities of ignoring human nature
 …  we should use psychological findings to ameliorate built-in ethnocentric reflexes and enhance people’s openness to others
 …  Humanistic scholars should be interested in objective accounts of how the world works, especially insofar as the aggregate effects of human action outrun the beliefs and intentions of individuals. /18-12-22


Portraits Made by AI: None of These People Exist
 …  Not in the sense that they were Photoshopped, but rather they were completely generated by artificial intelligence.
 …  generative adversarial network (GAN)
 …  NVIDIA researchers are now able to copy the “styles” of source faces onto destination faces, creating blends that have copied features but which look like entirely new people /18-12-22


Coal and Consequences, Five Days in Katowice
 …  As the bus nears downtown Katowice .. a coal mine. There are fourteen in Katowice, although only two remain active.
 …  Many Katowicians still burn coal for heat.
 …  Spodek .. it look like a crashed flying saucer.
 …  a “rule book” for the landmark 2015 Paris Agreement.
 …  signatory nations can ignore it without any direct consequences.
 …  the most important annual conference on the most important perennial threat to my generation.
 …  Climate change is running; we were walking; we are now standing.
 …  Marcin Krupa .. Andres Duda .. Poland has enough coal reserves for over two hundred years
 …  “Gilets Jaunes” movement in France .. Habermas .. modern democracy is the interflux of communication between the political and civil society
 …  Arnold Schwarzenegger .. “I wish I could be the Terminator in real life and travel back in time to stop all fossil fuels from being discovered,” he says. Then he leaves.
 …  Sir David Attenborough .. “the destruction of our civilization is on the horizon”
 …  Katowice has coal.
 …  Duda .. visits a coal mine in Brzeszcze .. “Please, don’t worry. As long as I am the president, I won’t allow anyone to murder the Polish mining.”
 …  “Sustainaclaus”
 …  the pointlessness of the meeting
 …  CO2 emissions rose 2.7 percent in 2018—the largest increase in the past seven years.
 …  “My own Germany was reunified because of the bravery of the people in Poland.”
 …  a conference about limiting change rather than increasing it /18-12-17


new neural network design could overcome big challenges in AI
 …  borrowed equations from calculus to redesign the core machinery of deep learning so it can model continuous processes
 …  Neural nets
 …  The discrete layers are what keep it from effectively modeling continuous processes
 …  it replaces the layers with calculus equations
 …  there are no more nodes and connections, just one continuous slab of computation
 …  ODE for “ordinary differential equations”
 …  The new method allows you to specify your desired accuracy first, and it will find the most efficient way to train itself within that margin of error. /18-12-17


wealthiest people .. are getting ready for the crackup of civilization
 …  C.E.O. of Reddit .. arranged to have laser eye surgery .. not for the sake of convenience or appearance but, .. he hopes that it will improve his odds of surviving a disaster, whether natural or man-made .. getting contacts or glasses is going to be a huge pain in the ass
 …  in recent years survivalism has expanded to more affluent quarters, taking root in Silicon Valley and New York City
 …  “I keep a helicopter gassed up all the time, and I have an underground bunker with an air-filtration system.”
 …  Bitcoin and cryptocurrency
 …  W.R.O.L., “without rule of law.”
 …  contemporary life rests on a fragile consensus
 …  “How to Eat a Pine Tree to Survive”
 …  “Oh, are you going to get apocalypse insurance?”
 …  New Zealand, he discovered, is a favored refuge
 …  walls are fitted with L.E.D. “windows” that show a live video of the prairie above the silo
 …  One prospective resident from New York City wanted video of Central Park. “All four seasons, day and night,” Menosky said. “She wanted the sounds, the taxis and the honking horns.” /18-12-17


Leszek Aleksander Moczulski
W pewnym wieku, po człowieku.
Jestem starczy, wystarczy.
/Bronisław Maj w Dwójce, 18-12-14


... ... ... 2014