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Comment: Re: Life form? (Score 1) 377

by ceoyoyo (#48639855) Attached to: The Dominant Life Form In the Cosmos Is Probably Superintelligent Robots

I didn't say it was a collection of particular matter and energy. "Pattern" sounds all cool and science fictiony, but it's not really particularly necessary to the definition. A chocolate bar is also constantly swapping it's matter and energy with its surroundings, yet most of us remain comfortable with calling it a hunk of matter called a "chocolate bar."

People, including ones who study these things, disagree on whether a virus is alive or not. You're clearly from the former camp. I'm from the latter. A virus requires a living host to perform *any* of the functions normally associated with life, including both active entropy reduction, energy use, and replication. Classifying viruses as non-life also neatly deals with the question of whether prions are alive. By your reasoning, based on the information contained in DNA, if I wrote down the genetic sequence of a virus then that book (or the computer I stored it in), plus some appropriate host (or another book containing the bits of that hosts's DNA necessary to encode ribosomes and whatever else the virus needed to replicate), would be alive. Also computer viruses. And my note to the secretary asking her to photocopy my note.

Your reasoning about fire is just my definition with a lot more words.

Comment: Re: Is a lame Seth Rogen flick worth dying for? (Score 1) 220

by ceoyoyo (#48637723) Attached to: Hackers' Shutdown of 'The Interview' Confirms Coding Is a Superpower

I'm curious what the reaction in the US would be if someone made a major motion picture about the sitting American president being assassinated. Not a film about actual events, or about a fictional president, but the actual one.

Making terrorist threats is certainly wrong, but I strongly suspect there's more than a little hypocrisy in the current "free speech, free speech!" reaction.

Comment: Re: Huh? (Score 1) 220

by ceoyoyo (#48637665) Attached to: Hackers' Shutdown of 'The Interview' Confirms Coding Is a Superpower

In order for you to drive a car, someone had to have the skills to make it. In order for sony to get hacked, someone had to have the skills to discover the vulnerability and write something to exploit it.

So assuming hacking sony is the result of wielding a superpower, who has that superpower? The jokers who pressed a button or the people who made the button and the thing it activated? I agree with the article, it's the coders, even if it was used indirectly, like tricking superman into doing something.

Comment: Re: This is worse than mythology. (Score 1) 377

by ceoyoyo (#48637449) Attached to: The Dominant Life Form In the Cosmos Is Probably Superintelligent Robots

That's not what AI is. It's one possibility, not necessarily the best one. Simulating neurons on digital computers has has given the best results so far, but only because we've got lots of digital computers around. Likely the best approach will be dedicated hardware that will probably work nothing like what we think of as a computer.

So when we build AIs that are not subject to our biological limitations, will they compete with us? Will someone weaponize them? It seems like a good possibility. Of course, lots of other things also have those possibilities. And maybe by the time we have hard AI we'll also have removed some our own biological limitations.

Comment: Re: This is not the problem (Score 1) 658

by ceoyoyo (#48620239) Attached to: Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Look around. The majority of jobs now are bullshit jobs. The sign of a successful modern economy is an overwhelmingly large service sector.

This has been going on a long time. Machines do most of the real work for us but we've bought into the fantasy that we all need to work 40+ hours so most of us are engaged in things like trying to sell each other stuff, handing each other stuff or throwing darts at a board to pick stocks for other people.

Comment: Re: giant sucking sounds (Score 1) 658

by ceoyoyo (#48619575) Attached to: Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

It's faded from the front page because it's now so routine nobody cares. iPhoto is free and does decent facial recognition. Facebook runs it on everything. My phone can take natural language spoken queries and respond with reasonable answers much of the time.

I worked on AI fifteen years ago and that was the stuff of dreams. Now you can have it in your pocket for a couple hundred bucks.

Comment: Welcome to the 21st century guys (Score 2) 156

by ceoyoyo (#48600799) Attached to: Small Bank In Kansas Creates the Bank Account of the Future

This sounds like it's till a bit hacked together (risk scoring?), and only available for business transactions, but it's a step in the right direction. Another ten or twenty years and you might be enjoying something like Europe and Australia's transfer system, or Canada's debit system.

Comment: Re:There is no vaccine for the worst diseases (Score 3, Insightful) 1050

by ceoyoyo (#48586741) Attached to: Time To Remove 'Philosophical' Exemption From Vaccine Requirements?

I'm a scientist who works with physicians. Physicians are not "as much scientists as scientists" are.

A physician who has taken a particular interest in research at a good school might have a few of years of part time research experience, plus a few courses in basic stats and research methods. In order to become an independent scientist you need to have eight to ten years of pure research training, plus another two (yeah right) to ten years of additional training and experience, again in full time research. It's not the same thing at all. And it shows. Phrases like "I have a great grasp on statistics" give it away. I know I don't have anything close to "a great grasp on statistics."

I don't feel at all qualified to prescribe drugs, diagnose patients or perform surgery, despite working and studying medical science at a postgraduate level for ten years. Why is it physicians feel they're just as good at science as a scientist?

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