Science

Andrey Nikolayevich’s Rule

There is another, even deeper reason for our inclination to narrate, and it is not psychological. It has to do with the effect of order on information storage and retrieval in any system, and it’s worth explaining because of what is considered the central problem of probability and information theory.

The first problem is that information is costly to obtain.

The second problem is that information is also  costly to store–like real state in NYC. The more orderly, less random, patterned, and narratized a series of words and symbols, the easier to store that series in one’s mind or jot it down in a book so your grandchildren can read it someday.

Finally, information is costly to manipulate and retrieve.

With so many brain cells–one hundred billion–the attic is quite large, so the difficulties probably do not arise from storage-capacity limitations, but maybe just indexing problems. Your conscious, or working memory, the one you’re using to read this line and make sense of their meaning, is considerably smaller than the attic. Consider that your memory  has difficulty holding a mere seven digit long phone number.

Consider a collection of words glued together  to constitute a 500-page book. If the words are purely random, picked up from the dictionary in an unpredictable way, you’ll not be able to summarize, transfer, or reduce the dimensions of that book without loosing something significant from it. You need a 100.000 words to carry the exact message of a random 100.000 words with you on your next trip to Siberia.

Now consider the opposite: a book filled with the repetition of the following sentence: “The chairman of [insert here your company name] is a lucky fellow who happened to be in the right place at the right time and claims credit for the company’s success, without making a single allowance for luck”. The entire book can be accurately compressed, as I just did, in 34 words, out of 100.000; you could accurately reproduce with total fidelity out of such a kernel.

By finding the pattern, the logic of the series, you no longer need to memorize it all. You just store the pattern. And, as we can see here, the pattern is obviously more compact than then raw information. You looked to the book and found a rule. It is along these lines that the great probabilist Andrey Nikolayevich Kolmorogov defined the  degree of randomness; it is called “Kolmorogov complexity“.

— Nassim N. Taleb, The Black Swan
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The God Hypothesis

The God Hypothesis suggests that the reality we inhabit also contains a supernatural agent who designed the universe and maintains it and even intervenes in it with miracles, which are temporary violations of his own otherwise grandly immutable laws.

Richard Swinburne, in his book Is there a God:

What the theists claims about God is that e does not have a power to create, conserve or annihilate anything, big or small. And he can also make objects move or do anything else ,,, He can make the planets move in the way Kepler discovered  that they move, or make gunpowder explode when we set a match to it. or he can make planets move in quite different ways that chemical substances explode or not explode under different conditions from those which now govern their behaviour. God is not limited by the laws of nature, he makes them and he can change or suspend them — if he chooses.

Did Jesus  have a human father, or was his mother a virgin at the time of his birth? Whether or not there is enough surviving evidence to decide it, this is still a stricly scientific question with a definite answer in principle: yes or no.

Did Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead? Did he himself come alive back again, three days after being crucified? There is an answer to every question, whether or not we can discover it in practice, and it is  a strictly scientific answer.

— Richard Dawkins, The God Delusion

god delusion

Theories of the Brane

String Theory is the dominant approach right now, and it has some success already, but the question is whether it will develop to the stage where we can actually solve problems that can be tested observationally.If we can’t bridge the gap between this ten dimensional theory and anything that we can observe, it will grind to halt.

In most versions of string theory, the extra dimensions above the normal three are all wrapped up very tightly, so that each point in our ordinary space is like a tightly wrapped origami in six dimensions. We see just three dimensions, the rest are invisible to us because they are wrapped up very tightly.

If you look at a needle, it looks like a one dimensional object from a long distance, but really it’s three dimensional.

Likewise, the extra dimensions could be seen if you looked at things very closely. Space on a very tiny scale is grainy and complicated–its smoothness is an illusion of the large scale.

That’s the conventional view in this string theories.

An idea which has become popular in the last two or three years is that not all extra dimensions are wrapped up–that there might be at least one extra dimension that exists on a large scale. Raman Sundrun and I (Lisa Randal) have developed this idea in our work on branes.

According to this theory, there could be other universes, perhaps separated from us by just a microscopic distance; however that distance is measured in some fourth spacial dimension, of which we are not aware.  Because we are imprisoned in our three dimension, we can’t directly detect these other universes.

Lisa Randal on Theories of the Brane

The Universe, Edge.org

@edge

universe

Borge’s Map

“we now use the country itself, as its own map, and I assure you it does nearly as well”

Ubiquitous Sensing. The number of Internet-connected devices hit 8.7 billion in 2012. IP-enabled sensors are projected to exceed 50 billion by 2020. The number of sensors of all types is variously projected at between 1 trillion and 10 trillion between 2017 and 2025. The lower estimate translates to 140 sensors for every man, woman, and child on the planet.

Ubiquitous Connectivity. Mobile broadband subscriptions reached 2.3 billion in 2014—five times the number in 2008. The smartphone is the fastest-adopted technology ever; the biggest absolute growth is in India and China. At the end of 2014 there were nearly 7 billion mobile-cellular subscriptions globally—nearly one per person on Earth.

Convergent Data. The world’s production of data grew 2,000-fold between 2000 and 2012. Its stock of data is expected to double every two years; 99 percent of it is digitized and half has an IP address. This means that half of the world’s data can now be put together, at near-zero cost, to reveal patterns previously invisible. Half of the world’s data is already, technically, a single, universally accessible document.

borges map

Sources:

http://digitaldisrupt.bcgperspectives.com/#

http://en.wikipedia.org/

Spiritual

Each one of us choose on what to believe in our lives, and how further one is interested in dig into the truth, as the truth is an endless source of knowledge.

In the quest for mean and reason, life prepares many doubt situations for our self discovery. Most of these problems don’t even exist, as if faced by a life threatening situation, but all of them are reasonable while we’re living the moment, solve all of this equations makes sense till completion, then we’re ready for next level.

Some questions are deep and profound, but from some point on we’re not able to tell exactly what the truth is, how everything works. We have to guess, approximate, and believe in ours and others interpretations to understand and explain what we believe in order to create a sustainable explanation that allow us to consciously understand life.
We need some level of faith to survive.

It’s in the gap created by faith related questions like “where we came from”, “where are we going”, and “what’s the reason for our existence”, that religion and mysticism appears, simplifying complex things trough a notably wrong interpretation, sometimes blinding the truth, sometimes simply ignoring it.

The quest for God is individual and legitimate, is expressed by every single interaction of someone with the holy, sacred act of evolution, of discovery and  understanding the natural sciences. Seek for the truth is something divine, is the fuel propelling years and years of evolution, something inevitable as well as undeniable.

In the spiritual quest, knowledge is the drive, as one cannot believe what one cannot understand, but accept the fact that one doesn’t know everything (in fact anyone knows barely nothing), and after all, we’re looking for those who also seek the truth with that in mind: we’re in the middle of a journey that’ll never reach an end.
But we all need the truth, no room for mysticism.

The bottom line

Religion fills the gap where education and knowledge cannot be met.
With time, our society invariably evolves, we’re going to need less and less religious concepts and beliefs, science starts taking over this gap, explaining everything, filling the gap of knowledge, of understanding, the natural evolution.

Spiritual is the quest for the truth, always questioning, always aware that we’re far from the end, the absolute communion between men and nature.
In the relentless quest for spiritual awareness, remember to look at the stars and think that we, as individuals, know very little about the universe we live in.

spiritual

Meet Mother Nature

This beautiful film made by Conservation International is part of a broader campaign, where nature shows its beauties in a personal matter, as the living creature it is.

Pay attention to the message and keep in mind Evolution is a path, not an end

Keep’n Mind

All great achievements require time.

Ethical axioms

Ethical axioms are found and tested

not very differently from the axioms of science.

Truth is what stands the test of experience.”

–Albert Einstein

Learn from yesterday

Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.
The important thing is not to stop questioning.”

— Albert Einstein

Einstein about problems

“Do not worry about your problems with mathematics, I assure you mine are far greater.”

(Letter to Barbara Lee Wilson, 7 January 1943)

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