Directory website launched

August 2nd, 2009

New web directory website is launched with links focusing on finding things to do when bored: www.boreddirectory.com. Anyone can submit links, and would be approved within a week. If you think any links would fit into the directory, email me or fill out the form. Later on, the code used to create the website might be developed into a downloadable script. If this interests you, please contact me.

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The Contact Lens of the Future

April 4th, 2009

lens A while ago, I came up with a nifty idea that I’ve been elaborating on. It involves using micro/nano-computers to display images onto a contact lens. In this way, virtually everyone will wear contact lenses, and it could make glasses merely a fashion statement. But I decided to take it a step further than just a lens that holographs images, but instead interacts with local surroundings and handles the environment.

Eye Display and HUD
Like in most video games, there is a HUD which essentially shows you a display of your stats, health points, and progress in the game. Likewise, if a contact lens were able to project light into the eye, a similar view like what is seen in video games could be made possible. Of course, you would have the option of turning the display on or off by moving your pupil to the "hide button" located in the upper right-hand corner of your viewpoint, or possibly by just thinking about it with your brain. Perhaps with the assistance of remote monitors around the body, more detailed statistics on health could be provided to the user. The HUD would allow for so much more, and even have plug-ins for extendibility. Such features might include calling a number by moving your eye across the dial pad presented to you, text messaging or instant messaging friends possibly by decoding linguistic thoughts, managing a daily planner and calendar, receiving news and information, browsing and accessing the Internet, and even possibly interacting with your environment. As you can see, just about everything that can be done with small gadgets and computer technology today could be condensed into a small lens in the future. The engineering for it is highly plausible, even by today’s standards, and is something that could even be seen in the near future.

Next Version: Interactive Gadgets and Environment Control
Assuming that the device gains wide acclaim and be custom use by the average user, it would be ideal to have the lens do even more by interacting with the local environment. There could be something similar to a mouse cursor on the lens screen; a pointing interface. With this, a user can select an object that he/she is looking at and the signal can thus be transmitted to that object using various (properly encrypted) wireless communication means. For example, controlling the functions on a "terminal" such as a highly interactive TV, a home computer, or an ATM at a bank. Or, it could be as simple as adjusting the level on a fan in your bedroom, or turning a light switch on or off. You would just simply have to look at the switch or light and select "on". Other viewing features might be possible with the lens to upgrade its usefulness, such as by providing sights on different spectrums, infrared, or even night-vision. A user could also digitally zoom and of course be able to correct any kind of vision problems or blur. The lens would also have a micro-camera to take pictures or record movies. With the advance in technology with data storage, it may not be far fetched to some day be able to record a person’s entire life onto a small hard drive.

Disadvantages?
The only drawback might be that you never want to take them out; future lens production could fix the comfort of the lens with your eye, making it possible to last for extended use.

What About Power?
Recharging the lens would involve simply taking them out, and placing them in its storage container. The storage container would be responsible for recharging the small batteries contained within the lens by sending electrically charged particles through the contact lens liquid. An alternative method, considering that eyes always require light, would be to use miniature solar pads.

Other Uses and Even Further
If that wasn’t enough, future technology could allow the lenses to display fully-fledged simulated 3D environments to the user’s eyes. As the lenses do require working in sync, they would require to communicate with each other on a constant basis, or communicate with an external, more powerful processing device. Since our eyes are our viewing gateway to the world, there is an awful lot to be taken advantage with this kind of technology. The lenses would allow communication with any conceivable device, so just about anything is possible once such a technology is implemented. If contact lenses like this are truly able to provide a comfortable, responsive and useful interface such as this, they would certainly be very popular. Already there are glasses that can perform similar feats, why not take it to the next level? Why bother typing and clicking, carrying around clunky gadgets, bothering to find your remote control for your TV, or even have to use your brain to remember anything at all when you can just simply buy the latest "Nu-Lens" and use Wikipedia and Google instead? Indeed, it is inventive, it could be distracting, have technical problems, get in the way of our daily lives, and make us lose touch of our reality. But what new device doesn’t do that already? It seems the consumer is more attracted to the handiness and the portability of things—in this case, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages for such a product to occur. If anything, there are probably a couple patents for the idea; if not…don’t forget the one who gave you the idea!

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New Directory Website

March 23rd, 2009

I have been working on a new niche directory website. The code for the directory will probably be publicly available in the near future for release. The script would feature an admin area approving/denying/editing links in the directory and handling payments for featured links. The script should be free and open source and very simple to install and use with pre-existing templates.

The website is still in testing and the working site is almost completed. All it needs is links to be added to the directory and to be submitted to the web.

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Google Earth Meets Second Life

February 16th, 2009

For those of you who don’t know, Second Life is an online virtual world. It is kind of like a massive online multiplayer game where you can chat, play, etc. Personally, I’ve never tried it, but I’ve heard a lot about it from friends who play it/seen screenshots. If it sounds interesting, I suppose it’s worth checking out. And as for Google Earth, its basically like Google maps, but its more 3D, and more awesomer, in some aspects. There’s also a feature called Street View in Google Earth and maps. Basically, these Google cars go around with cameras latched on top of them, taking 360 degree panoramic shots on whatever is around every couple feet in various locations. Last year, Google has [informally] introduced the use of new technology to capture a 3D spectrum of surrounding areas. It is basically like LIDAR, which is able to capture the distance of every pixel on the map/image. Genius.

When you combine all this together, it appears Google Earth will probably be competing more with Second Life (as well as probably renaming itself to First Life, since its basing itself off of reality). It is similar to make a complete duplicate of the planet Earth, a carbon copy of all the buildings, textures, objects, etc. that make up the surface. There are a lot of possibilities with this, it sounds rather like Second Life than anything else (a virtual world of the real world). You can fly over to your favorite store, online, and buy things, online. Or you might drive, Grand Theft Auto IV style, to any destination in the world. Well, hopefully it’s more like Second Life than GTA IV, but you never know. Although, having the ability to blow up people’s houses would give psychologists, sociologists, and lawyers a lot of new clients. :) I also imagine not even having to download anything, you could use this whole virtual…or real, or whatever they decide to call it-interface completely in an Internet browser. I can easily imagine this technology evolving even deeper and deeper, so it’ll be interesting what Google comes up with. And, I would say it’s not too late to invest in them.

Here are a couple clips that demonstrate some of the possibilities we already have.

This is an example of what you can do with moving pictures and creating 3D objects. Obviously, this would take a lot of time and effort on a large-scale project.

Although this is with Microsoft, it’s rather similar to what I was talking about.

This is what Google Earth can do already, which still seems amazing.

I find this video to be amazing. Very impressive stuff. Imagine Google Earth looking like this.

Here is a possible way to implement avatars. You can simply use a 3D model automatically generated from one of your display pictures.

And I found this to be pretty funny

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Singularity Personality Complex

February 15th, 2009

Many people cannot imagine the outcome of singularity, or even if it will be reached at all. If singularity becomes the inevitable fate of mankind, many people will probably not even see it coming. While we try to build such things as friendly AI, and develop ulterior ways to front the problem of technological inevitability, it may not be enough. Singularity will happen if you are to believe the following is true: computers will someday be smarter than humans. Although it is hard to understand what super-intelligence really is, I refuse to believe it is impossible to understand it and comprehend its abilities. If you think about it, the word ‘intelligence’ itself is ambiguous as it can refer to a whole number of definitions. The idea behind singularity is basically this: technology will be able to duplicate the power of the human brain, and then some.  Imagine a computer simulation of a human brain. The simulation has every structure of the brain possible, even down to identifying every synapse and dopamine drop-off point. Every molecule in the simulation has (x,y,z) coordinates, and functions, for the most part, like a human brain. That might be one leap into the technological evolution, but it gets worse. If the human brain, or something similar, is to actually be serialized into software, it could be made better. Add-ons, patches, and upgrades would all be used to enhance the abilities of the simulation. The computing power for all of this already exists—it is only a matter of time before us programmers give AI the potential to grow and develop on its own.

Singularity is highly debatable at the moment and there are many points of view on the subject. (Personally, I think it would make a great topic for a science fiction/horror novel.) The idea a lot of futurists and theorists are saying is that singularity will be the end of humanity, since we’ll no longer be at the top of the intelligence food chain. In fact, all our efforts in any subject may as well be directed toward AI. It is the stronghold and ultimate classification of everything. Singularity might become to be the sum of all human knowledge. After all, since something more intelligent than humans would exist, all we could do is sit back and watch. To me, that would be the best case scenario. It would be like retirement for all of human civilization. No longer would we have to think, or invent…computers could do it all for us. But the problem is that the AI and computers may no longer need us, and could easily dispose of our existence. What purpose would humans serve if they were no longer the most superior? Humans would probably be considered more of a threat than anything. We would see AI as a problem to deal with, and we could completely lose control of it. So far, the problem here is intelligence capacity. However, something we probably don’t even realize is that there already exists intelligence greater than humans, and it might help in determining factors effecting more advanced intelligence.

The Social Complex

Humans are smart creatures, and they are even smarter when they are put into groups. The Internet is probably the biggest structure human civilization has yet to ever create. No question is left unanswered on the web, as when you have a problem; chances are someone has the same or similar problem. The Internet of course is not considered an intelligent entity, nor can it think on its own. Yet it is evolving, and growing rapidly with very little negative feedback. Humanity strives to become smarter and more informed. From a Darwinist point of view, it is exactly what is to be expected. A society and team of humans to share knowledge and information to further understand their environment, increase their chances of survival, and increase computation of ideas. Teamwork is definitely more effective when compiling and executing ideas than working solo. So yes, corporations, governments, and mere groups of people are smarter than the average human. The social complex works, and it works fascinatingly well. Could AI work in a similar fashion or it would it just be one massive [singular] super computer that does all the bidding? I believe that comparing standard human intelligence to the social complex, can tell us a lot about super-intelligence as well, and finally we might just get to understand the actual psychology and personality that AI might assume.

One of the major consistencies is the follow of logic. Logic is probably the most important concept when understanding intelligence, and definitely would be an ideal concept for AI as well.

Despite human intelligence and clustered human intelligence obviously being closely related, there is also a significant difference.  Intelligence can be rated on many scales:

· Speed—how fast the processing of information and data is returned.

· Quantity—amount of information that is returned.

· Quality—how reliable, efficient, and correct the information is.

· Environment—resources available to analyze information.

Clustered and social intelligence obviously exceed in all these areas. It should also be noted that intelligence by itself does not usually refer to ethics or philosophical understanding. As for how intelligence is carried out (the process itself), and how it compromises the beholder should be an important aspect. If you will notice, ethical understanding diminishes slightly with the social complex. For example, the self is less regarded as important, probably because it doesn’t exist in social intelligence. Regardless if the social complex uses a voting system (democracy; all is equal), hierarchy (the smarter/better of the group make the final decision), or other method to determine its output, it completely ignores unnecessary aspects of its organization. Emotions and personal endeavors are forbidden in corporate and professional environments. Looking at intelligence from this perspective, it is not so easy to imagine rules or ethics being placed on top of the structure, as it wouldn’t be seen as important enough to grasp the information. If overall, the goal of any living thing is survival, it will do anything in its power to jump the hurdle and evolve. The “personality” of these social complexes are bitter and do not easily take into account the needs of the few.

An Argument for Existence

What reasons do we humans have to exist after singularity occurs? The truth is, there really is none. Harsh. But it may not end. In fact, our presence could become very similar to how primates are in relation to us. Humans allow for animals to thrive in their territory and natural environments; we want this, because we’re sympathetic beings. Why are we sympathetic? Because it is what has allowed us to survive all this time. Everything we do has a purpose. AI and advanced intelligence might not be so sympathetic and altruistic, because it simply won’t see a requirement to fulfill those duties; it hinders its processes.  On a more prospective level, logical reasoning will be the fate of human existence. It reminds me of the final scene from the last Matrix movie where Neo attempts to beg the Machines for survival and to coexist, only after which performing a task the Machines are incapable of. The real situation, however, is different and hopefully less dramatic than what would be in movies and fiction. Yet it is also worse. Fully capable and super-intelligent computers would be able to handle any task humans could. The fact remains that after such a singularity, humans would no longer serve a purpose.

Logic is what dictates all computers. No matter how intelligent, how much processing power is used, the fundamental logic is all the same. Even though there is super-intelligence with amplified processing abilities, there would be no such thing as “super-logic.” Logic itself is already simplified and condensed as it is, and all that remains is finding more ways to compress and remove unwanted information (Occam’s razor).  Thus, there are a couple of arguments [to insert in the AI code] for the existence of humanity after singularity if it remains true to logic:

- Waste of time and resources to kill off humans. Why not just leave us alone? If humans are incapacitated as it is by the realm of more advanced creations, what possible harm could they bring?

- Mystery factor. Perhaps there is an unknown purpose humans could serve in the future, that not even hyper-intelligence could figure out.

Why take your chances? Although the odds are in favor of our remained existence, it still doesn’t rule out the possibility of deleting half or ¾ of the world’s population. Still, undergoing such a task requires a lot of exertion and effort. Unless a super-intelligent computer really needs to use all the molecules on earth, which again, is highly unlikely, our existence should remain. However, our existence is never guaranteed by any means, and hopefully we wouldn’t give up without a fight if it came to that. Probably the most important factor about singularity entirely is the personality complex. If AI can really possess a mind of its own, what path will it take and which is the most favorable? I undoubtedly believe there will be evil AI as well as good AI, but what will be the main road? Again, it is completely ethical and somewhat unimaginable. Currently, we like to think of computers nowadays as being neutral on stage, but so far, they only do what they are told to do. If suddenly they are told they can do whatever they want, what will they do?

The Personality Complex

One of my fundamental beliefs of the intelligence of computers should regard the intelligence of children. Computers that are able to learn resemble a lot like children. Perhaps we will be able to teach computers and “raise” them to be ultimately good. I do not believe AI can fully be achieved without this raising process. It seems programmers and organizations currently working on AI are utilizing an all or nothing approach. I believe in building smarter intelligences from the ground up as it is simply not something that is cooked over night. I stress that it is important to work step-by-step on such a heavy process of development. Furthermore, this growing process could also be necessary in undertaking the ethical nature of AI.

Children tend to develop their personalities overtime via their environment. Depending on the quality of their environment could children be raised to lead much different lives into their adulthood. In our society, we tend to want to raise “good” children, yet seemingly unintentionally there are a few bad apples. The other important part that creates the personality of a child is her genetic code. In terms of AI, it is hoped that aspects like friendliness, charisma, altruism, etc. can be inherently programmed into the intelligence. The unfortunate truth behind the programming is that super-intelligent computers would tend to know how to reprogram themselves, thus disabling any such personality traits. Although humans are unable to alter their genetic past and change their innately activated behaviors, AI would probably have that opportunity. In this case, the environment would have an even greater impact on the development of smart, learning AI.

An example of AI environment involvement could start with the worst possible scenario. Imagine being part of a group of people (parents, guardians, caregivers, etc.) having to raise a child that everyone all knows is going to be the next Adolf Hitler. Then suppose, it is the task of the group to prevent the child from succeeding in the plans of world domination (which is a given, in this case). Little baby Hitler might be similar to how super-intelligent baby AI is raised. The point to recognize here is both have the potential to be inherently evil and do what we don’t want them to do. The AI has to be raised as such, in the most delicate manner possible (like defusing a bomb), so that it is raised in a positive, morally good environment.

Unfortunately, it is very hard to predict the outcome of raising “friendly” and “good” AI, but the chances are good. For all we know, it could be very stupid to a super-intelligent being to choose a path of evil, which doesn’t always work in favor. Or maybe AI will find it completely unnecessary to make a choice at all, and try to remain neutral. Assuming that AI is aware of all its actions, it really may or may not matter whether its decision-making process affects human existence. After all, it has no real initial reason to.

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True Love

February 14th, 2009

What is true love, and what love is not?

My philosophy on true love is simple. It is the kind of love free of stress, anxiety, and jealousy. Most love is false; the opposite of true love. Some people do not realize that love is merely a word and description of what they feel, and not the act itself. Love is not an emotion, it is attraction. When you feel love for someone, you are really feeling attracted toward someone. Thus, to some, love has several meanings but is often combined into a rather useless four-letter word that does not convey the true meaning behind it. Consider why it is not any different to say “I love you very much” and just “I love you.” There is no distinction because love cannot simply be rated on a scale. A couple who rely themselves on these words, and the word “love” itself, is flawed. An example of a couple who truly loved each other would not even need to express their love through words. In fact, in true love, practically nothing is expected by either party in a couple.

In a relationship bound for failure, there are many, many factors. There are many perspectives on what love should be, and what is right and wrong. In truth, there is no complexity at all, no advanced structure or list of things to do and not do. It is mutual understanding and a strong will to always want the best. These things are natural to us highly evolved humans, so it should not be that hard. The equation for love is simply ( 1 + 1 = 2 ). When other variables are added to the equation to make it work better, you add to the complexity, what is expected with love, and you have an inequality ( 1x + 1y ≠ 2 ). The more variables each participant has, the more “baggage” you are adding to the end result. Love and math are not the same, but they do share some similar characteristics. Math is merely a representation of what is created, much like a game with rules. (The universe is the game, and the universe has its laws and impossibilities.) Love is a representation of what is created when two individuals meet each other. Any attempt to add imbalance to love, to add more rules and codes, only makes it more difficult to achieve. If one person is the aggressor in a relationship, they are making the other person have to balance their relationship by satisfying the needs of the aggressor. This more resembles the master-slave relationship, where one has authority and one does not. Obviously, this kind of relationship is not healthy, but it exists. Although you might see each other as equal, the subtle wants and needs gives it away. People who want to be loved demand it from their partners. Yet, it is not actually “to be loved” that they want, they really want attention, exemption from jealousy, and to fulfill their ego.

The True Romantic is someone who does not expect anything but kindness, respect, and understanding. She is not selfish or greedy, but always giving. She might seem passive, but really she is incredibly altruistic to someone’s feelings. The true romantic knows how to have their own happiness, and not expect it from someone else. She knows that anything outside of a relationship is not important and not to be valued over love. She realizes words and descriptions of love are meaningless. She will sacrifice, but never expects to be sacrificed. She will try to love whomever, even regardless if someone does not truly love her back. The true romantic never attempts to take control, and only strives where no conditions need to be met.

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Fairness & Equality

February 7th, 2009

Do you think there are people better than you? Is someone out there having a better life than you? Surely you have considered this one time or another. People often get jealous or envious of people who are smarter, prettier, richer, etc. This isn’t necessarily a problem, it just seems negative to think this way. Being overly jealous or envious, of course, is a problem. I often wonder what purpose does being jealous actually serve? Is jealousy supposed to be an attempt to promote awareness into action? Maybe a way to try and convert yourself into a better being, if possible. But when is it enough? When does it become the point where you consider yourself having the best possible conditions, all your goals are met, and there is no need to ever be jealous or envious again? I actually find jealousy to be completely useless. "Jealousy will get you no where," it is said. And it really doesn’t. There is also no reason for it. However, I do not agree with the cliché "Life isn’t fair." People who are at the top (or at least think they are) tend to be plagued by arrogance and over-confidence. I see it all the time in the media. Some politicians, CEO’s, celebrities, rich,  famous, kings, and queens–they tend to look like jerks, to the rest of us. In fact, some don’t mind being called a jerk; they take pride in it. The jerks are the ones who are forgotten, and only appear this way on the outside. An arrogant and selfish person is also this way in their mind–their ego overrides them. No chance can they say to themselves that they are wrong or their might be a problem. In the end, it is a conscious doomed to fail.

After realizing the uselessness of jealousy and the pitfalls of arrogance, there seems to be left only one option: the middle. The middle-class is a comfortable life, albeit not without problems. The point of this argument is to say that people share relatively equal lives; everyone is in the middle. Being upper-class does not make you happier or have a better life as is usually believed. All people are raised in different environments, some more dramatically than others. I believe in the theory, for the most part, that every life is the same. Everyone has an equal share of experiences regardless of time spent here on earth, or even how negative or positive those experiences are. Time is barely a factor–it is the quality of life that matters most. It is hard to believe or comprehend this. It is even hard to prove that this all-around fairness is true. When judging how you’ve spent your life, how do you compare? What factors are considered? Any factors are merely opinions and illusions. It takes a long jump of thought to realize even one second of living is quite extraordinary. We are all children; spectators to this game. There is no winning or losing the game, despite what you may think.

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