MEGATRENDS: Wabi and Sabi    
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By: Devvy Kidd
November 20, 2006

© 2006 -

"The global theory of free trade is siphoning off America's wealth and bringing her economy to the level of others. The theory is displacing American workers who otherwise would be employed." Senator George Malone, 1958

First plank of the communist manifesto: abolition of all private property. Eminent domain is sweeping this country like a deadly forest fire and it will continue to escalate as plans for the complete and total destruction of our sovereign nation move ahead. Bush's proposed North American Union (NAU) and the so-called Security and Prosperity Partnership of North America (SPP) are the final nails in the coffin of America's sovereignty. The globalists in Congress and the White House over the past several decades have been slowly, step by step deconstructing our sovereign republic in anticipation of eliminating these united States of America and merging them into one region of a world governmental body. Congressman Ron Paul summed it up this way [link] :

"By now many Texans have heard about the proposed “NAFTA Superhighway,” which is also referred to as the trans-Texas corridor. What you may not know is the extent to which plans for such a superhighway are moving forward without congressional oversight or media attention.

"This superhighway would connect Mexico, the United States, and Canada, cutting a wide swath through the middle of Texas and up through Kansas City. Offshoots would connect the main artery to the west coast, Florida, and northeast. Proponents envision a ten-lane colossus the width of several football fields, with freight and rail lines, fiber-optic cable lines, and oil and natural gas pipelines running alongside.

"This will require coordinated federal and state eminent domain actions on an unprecedented scale, as literally millions of people and businesses could be displaced. The loss of whole communities is almost certain, as planners cannot wind the highway around every quaint town, historic building, or senior citizen apartment for thousands of miles.

"The SPP was first launched in 2005 by the heads of state of Canada, Mexico, and the United States at a summit in Waco. The SPP was not created by a treaty between the nations involved, nor was Congress involved in any way. Instead, the SPP is an unholy alliance of foreign consortiums and officials from several governments. One principal player is a Spanish construction company, which plans to build the highway and operate it as a toll road. But don't be fooled: the superhighway proposal is not the result of free market demand, but rather an extension of government-managed trade schemes like NAFTA that benefit politically-connected interests.

"The real issue is national sovereignty. Once again, decisions that affect millions of Americans are not being made by those Americans themselves, or even by their elected representatives in Congress. Instead, a handful of elites use their government connections to bypass national legislatures and ignore our Constitution – which expressly grants Congress the sole authority to regulate international trade.

"The ultimate goal is not simply a superhighway, but an integrated North American Union – complete with a currency, a cross-national bureaucracy, and virtually borderless travel within the Union. Like the European Union, a North American Union would represent another step toward the abolition of national sovereignty altogether."



Devvys' main site:



Well, kids, is light beginning to filter in through the leaves of the forest?

Wabi and Sabi: the aesthetics of solitude

An attempt to build an ethical robotic soldier

US Air Force

WAR is expensive and it is bloody. That is why America’s Department of Defence wants to replace a third of its armed vehicles and weaponry with robots by 2015. Such a change would save money, as robots are usually cheaper to replace than people. As important for the generals, it would make waging war less prey to the politics of body bags. Nobody mourns a robot.

The Pentagon already routinely uses robotic aeroplanes known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). In November 2001 two missiles fired from a remote-controlled Predator UAV killed Muhammad Atef, al-Qaeda’s chief of military operations and one of Osama bin Laden’s most important associates, as he drove his car near Kabul, Afghanistan's capital.

But whereas UAVs and their ground-based equivalents, such as the machinegun toting robot Swords, are usually controlled by remote human operators, the Pentagon would like to give these new robots increasing amounts of autonomy, including the ability to decide when to use lethal force.

To achieve this, Ronald Arkin of the Georgia Institute of Technology, in Atlanta, is developing a set of rules of engagement for battlefield robots to ensure that their use of lethal force follows the rules of ethics. In other words, he is trying to create an artificial conscience. Dr Arkin believes that there is another reason for putting robots into battle. It is that they have the potential to act more humanely than people. Stress does not affect a robot's judgement in the way it affects a soldier's. His approach is to create what he calls a “multidimensional mathematical decision space of possible behaviour actions”. Based on inputs that could come from anything from radar data and current position to mission status and intelligence feeds, the system would divide the set of all possible actions into those that are ethical and those that are not. If, say, the drone from which the fatal attack on Mr Atef was launched had sensed that his car was overtaking a school bus, it may have held fire.

There are comparisons to be made between Dr Arkin’s work and the famous laws of robotics drawn up by Isaac Asimov, a science-fiction writer, to govern robot behaviour. But whereas Asimov’s laws were intended to prevent robots from harming people in any circumstances, Dr Arkin’s are supposed to ensure only that they are not unethically killed.

Although a completely rational robot may be unfazed by the chaos and confusion of the battlefield it may make mistakes all the same. Surveillance and intelligence data can be wrong and conditions and situations on the battlefield can change. But this is as much a problem for people as it is for robots.

There is also the question of whether the use of such robots would lead to wars breaking out more easily. Dr Arkin has started to survey policy makers, the public, researchers and military personnel to gauge their views on the use of lethal force by autonomous robots.

Creating a robot with a conscience may give the military more than it bargained for. To some degree, it gives the robot the right to refuse an order.


Kurzweils' perma link to article: [link]


Learn Like A Human
By Jeff Hawkins
Why Can't A Computer Be More Like A Brain?
ILLUSTRATION:Bryan Christie Design

By the age of five, a child can understand spoken language, distinguish a cat from a dog, and play a game of catch. These are three of the many things humans find easy that computers and robots currently cannot do. Despite decades of research, we computer scientists have not figured out how to do basic tasks of perception and robotics with a computer.

Our few successes at building "intelligent" machines are notable equally for what they can and cannot do. Computers, at long last, can play winning chess. But the program that can beat the world champion can't talk about chess, let alone learn backgammon. Today's programs-at best-solve specific problems. Where humans have broad and flexible capabilities, computers do not.

Perhaps we've been going about it in the wrong way. For 50 years, computer scientists have been trying to make computers intelligent while mostly ignoring the one thing that is intelligent: the human brain. Even so-called neural network programming techniques take as their starting point a highly simplistic view of how the brain operates.

In some ways, the task has been wrongly posed right from the start. In 1950, Alan Turing, the computer pioneer behind the British code-breaking effort in World War II, proposed to reframe the problem of defining artificial intelligence as a challenge that has since been dubbed the Turing Test. Put simply, it asked whether a computer, hidden from view, could conduct a conversation in such a way that it would be indistinguishable from a human.

So far, the answer has been a resounding no. Turing's behavioral framing of the problem has led researchers away from the most promising avenue of study: the human brain. It is clear to many people that the brain must work in ways that are very different from digital computers. To build intelligent machines, then, why not understand how the brain works, and then ask how we can replicate it?

My colleagues and I have been pursuing that approach for several years. We've focused on the brain's neocortex, and we have made significant progress in understanding how it works. We call our theory, for reasons that I will explain shortly, Hierarchical Temporal Memory, or HTM. We have created a software platform that allows anyone to build HTMs for experimentation and deployment. You don't program an HTM as you would a computer; rather you configure it with software tools, then train it by exposing it to sensory data. HTMs thus learn in much the same way that children do. HTM is a rich theoretical framework that would be impossible to describe fully in a short article such as this, so I will give only a high level overview of the theory and technology. Details of HTM are available at [link]

First, I will describe the basics of HTM theory, then I will give an introduction to the tools for building products based on it. It is my hope that some readers will be enticed to learn more and to join us in this work.

We have concentrated our research on the neocortex, because it is responsible for almost all high-level thought and perception, a role that explains its exceptionally large size in humans-about 60 percent of brain volume [see illustration "Goldenrod [link] "]. The neocortex is a thin sheet of cells, folded to form the convolutions that have become a visual synonym for the brain itself. Although individual parts of the sheet handle problems as different as vision, hearing, language, music, and motor control, the neocortical sheet itself is remarkably uniform. Most parts look nearly identical at the macroscopic and microscopic level.

Page 1 of 6 Next [link] »

"One of the baffling aspects of the brain is that it decides what to learn on its own"




19 Apr 2007 @ 19:52 by vaxen : Oh...
Devi is a bit of a stickler for...

But I am not. I want to see an end to all borders. An end to all Nations. One single planet whereupon a multiplicity of teeming life forms (form is emptiness, emptiness is form) coexist synchronously in harmony with the real laws of this MEST Uni-Verse. Beyond the one verse... multiple dimensions... beyond MEST... all.  

21 Apr 2007 @ 18:29 by a-d : Yeahhh!....
"We know that dictators are quick to choose aggression, while free nations strive to resolve differences in peace."
– George W. Bush /// ..... must be the understatement of the Century! Don't u just luv'it!?...hehehhe  

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