15 FEB 2015 by ideonexus

 Cosmists VS Terrans

I believe that the 21st century will be dominated by the question as to whether humanity should or should not build artilects, i.e. machines of godlike intelligence, trillions of trillions of times above the human level. I see humanity splitting into two major political groups, which in time will become increasingly bitterly opposed, as the artilect issue becomes more real and less science fiction like. The human group in favor of building artilects, I label the “Cosmists,” based on the ...
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13 FEB 2015 by ideonexus

 Factions in the Artilect War

I predict that humanity will split into three major philosophical, ideological, political groups, which I label as follows. –The Cosmists (based on the word “cosmos”) will be in favor of building these godlike machines (the artilects), who would be immortal, think a million times faster than humans, have unlimited memory, go anywhere, do anything and take any shape. The Cosmists would take a quasi-religious view that they are god builders. Privately, I am a Cosmist, but publicly, I hav...
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24 JAN 2012 by ideonexus

 Scientific Truth Must Come Out of Controversy

Scientific truth, like puristic truth, must come about by controversy. Personally this view is abhorrent to me. It seems to mean that scientific truth must transcend the individual, that the best hope of science lies in its greatest minds being often brilliantly and determinedly wrong, but in opposition, with some third, eclectically minded, middle-of-the-road nonentity seizing the prize while the great fight for it, running off with it, and sticking it into a textbook for sophomores written ...
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There is the ideal of scientific facts taught without passion and the reality of impassioned conflict within scientific exploration.

01 SEP 2011 by ideonexus

 Myth VS Science

The difference between myth and science is the difference between divine inspiration of 'unaided reason' (as Bertrand Russell put it) on the one hand and theories developed in observational contact with the real world on the other. It is the difference between the belief in prophets and critical thinking, between Credo quia absurdum (I believe because it is absurd–Tertullian) and De omnibus est dubitandum (Everything should be questioned–Descartes). To try to write a grand cosmical drama ...
Folksonomies: science debate conflict myth
Folksonomies: science debate conflict myth
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A great quote by Hannes Alfvén on the lines between empiricism and intuitive reasoning.

10 AUG 2011 by ideonexus

 The Eternal Conflict Between Enlightenment and Ignorance

‘There are two great powers,” the man said, “and they’ve been fighting since time began. Every advance in human life, every scrap of knowledge and wisdom and decency we have has been torn by one side from the teeth of the other. Every little increase in human freedom has been fought over ferociously between those who want us to know more and be wiser and stronger, and those who want us to obey and be humble and submit.
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A shaman describes a more sophisticated clash than between good and evil, knowledge versus totalitarian ignorance.

21 MAR 2011 by ideonexus

 The Narcissism of Minor Differences

It is clearly not easy for man to give up the satisfaction of this inclination to aggression. They do not feel comfortable without it. The advantage which a comparatively small cultural group offers of allowing this instinct an outlet in the form of hostility against intruders is not to be despised. It is always possible to bind together a considerable number of people in love, so long as there are other people left over to receive the manifestations of their aggressiveness. I once discuss...
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This is a term coined by Sigmund Freud to describe the phenomena where by societies that have much in common will come at such strong odds against one another over the points where they diverge.