...I am offended by your phrasing. It should read "the dark ages or better."
What I would love to see is Watson's training interface on the Internet, as a service, with anyone able to pick a domain and contribute expert knowledge, whether in the form of questions Watson should ask, answers to those questions, or even just links to sources of relevant information. Through a crowd-sourced approach Watson's capacities could be so much more quickly developed. By keeping each user or group in sandboxes and maintaining knowledge in each domain more or less separately, there would be no problem for those who just input nonsense, or wrong information, because Watson can build up a reliability profile and consider that in later recombination of its knowledge.
Of course first there has to be a nice easy way of making Watson nodes that can be widely deployed. Frankly this is one area of research that deserves all the money we can afford to throw at it. In the future Watson will be able to derive new hypotheses and new knowledge obtained from inference, and it will certainly accelerate our research capacity.
It will eventually become clear what genes encode the proto-concepts in the brain for mother, father, food, water, etc. Not only that but the concept of the Sun, Moon, and stars will likely have been encoded in there as well. Extrapolate from that notion, you can get Jungian archetypes, a whole catalog of fetishes, and most certainly the predilection towards religiosity.
Bene Gesserit meetup this Sunday.
There's also the challenge of working in the tight space of a Jeffries tube.
Exactly. Beat me to the punch.
Just grow more forests. It not only sequesters the carbon, it frees most of the oxygen for our use, to breathe and stuff.
Set aside the religious fundamentalist aspect of the thing, and what you see is totalitarianism in action. Indoctrination is so deep that the people fully sanction their own oppression. It's a nationalistic form of Stockholm Syndrome. Every powerful regime uses religious and nationalistic pretenses to make heretics, infidels, and apostates out of the most rational, individualistic, and liberal people in the society. Under the hypnosis of a culture that promotes alienation and fear, the mob gleefully hunts down and tears apart all independent-minded individuals.
Westerners forget that for much of the world it is nearly impossible to cultivate a modern, rational, humanist intellect.
Stalin killed for an ideology - one that justified killing for a greater cause. Atheism wasn't the source of that sense of justification, Communism was.
It's true that some religions are nicer and more rational than others. I think Buddha's teachings are alright, in that he encourages skepticism and doubt as the means to get past illusions, even including the illusion of the ego. In Buddha's philosophy sectarianism and blind belief are errors born of ignorance. The religions built around Buddha sometimes have superstitious elements, but that doesn't indict the rational psychological core. So I try to encourage people who believe in nutty things like the Son of God to look at Eastern philosophy more closely, to augment and clarify the rationale for their ethics and meditative practices. That makes me more of a Sam Harris style atheist, in that I perceive great value in things like yoga and meditation.
This is why politicians like to prop up so-called "faith." They love ti that they can get people to believe any nonsense they want, and religion gives them a huge foothold.
I went for a Hostgator reseller account. But just till they get too evil.
Most of us would never choose to live as homeless ascetics, and yet some of us are unable to work and acquire the minimal property required for basic comfort and security. Should such individuals be given some property as a basic right? I believe that if we are to be consistent to the ideal of reciprocal rights, they must receive some help from society as a whole. Some would disagree. Consider other issues like mental and physical health.
Thing is, by promoting these 'rights' we in fact help society overall. As the downtrodden gain back their dignity, we gain more dignity ourselves, and those individuals grow stronger and give back to society. As we help those with illness, we save resources that would be spent later as their illnesses become more serious.
There are all kinds of areas where something might not seem on its face to be a 'natural right' and yet we must extend a hand in order to raise people up and bring them out of despair and into society. Otherwise we will always function at a minimal level, and most likely a dysfunctional one.
Whys are kind of useless without a common metaphysics, but we do have a common nature and common interests, and those make fine springboards.
The reciprocal principle. If you don't want someone else to have a certain right, you must be equally willing to give it up yourself. If you want some right for yourself, then you must be willing to extend it to others in full measure. I'm sure there are plenty of people who would cut off their nose just to spite their neighbor's face, but generally this principle makes sense.
As a person born in America but by no means inured to its culture, I can assure you it pisses me off equally that we hold people at Guantanamo Bay with no legal recourse and no rights of habeas corpus. It especially concerns me because these actions are diametrically-opposed to the ideals upon which this republic was founded, namely to protect powerless individuals from the tyranny of the powerful by a rigorous application of due process. And whose interests are really being considered?
One interesting thing I want to point out is that al-Awlaki would not have been assassinated if he was residing here, or in France, or in Britain, or in any country where the US wouldn't be able to act with impunity. These actions are reserved for places whose lawlessness we find convenient.
Now that the genie is out of the bottle, it's going to be really hard to get it back inside.