10 MAR 2019 by ideonexus

 Being Against Technological Progress if Futile

Ron complaining that antibiotics put too many grave diggers out of work. The transfer of labor from humans to our inventions is nothing less than the history of civilization. It is inseparable from centuries of rising living standards and improvements in human rights. What a luxury to sit in a climate-controlled room with access to the sum of hu¬ man knowledge on a device in your pocket and lament how we don't work with our hands anymore! There are still plenty of places in the world where p...
Folksonomies: automation
Folksonomies: automation
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27 JUL 2018 by ideonexus

 Norman Borlaug, Giga-Lifesaver

In the 1950s and ’60s, another giga-lifesaver, Norman Borlaug, outsmarted evolution to foment the Green Revolution in the developing world.21 Plants in nature invest a lot of energy and nutrients in woody stalks that raise their leaves and blossoms above the shade of neighboring weeds and of each other. Like fans at a rock concert, everyone stands up, but no one gets a better view. That’s the way evolution works: it myopically selects for individual advantage, not the greater good of the ...
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20 JUL 2017 by ideonexus

 Old CRPGs are Unplayable for Modern Gamers

They had five days to play (Ultima IV), and I asked them to make as much progress as they could in that time. When we gathered to debrief in class, a few students explained how they’d overcome some of their difficulties, but the vast majority was utterly flummoxed by the game. As one of them put it, “I’d say for gamers of our generation, an RPG like Ultima IV is boring and pretty much unplayable.” After removing the arrow from my chest, I asked them to explain why. It mostly came dow...
Folksonomies: gaming preservation history
Folksonomies: gaming preservation history
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10 MAR 2017 by ideonexus

 Rise of the Useless Class

As algorithms push humans out of the job market, wealth and power might become concentrated in the hands of the tiny elite that owns the all-powerful algorithms, creating unprecedented social and political inequality. Alternatively, the algorithms might themselves become the owners. Human law already recognizes intersubjective entities like corporations and nations as “legal persons.” Though Toyota or Argentina has neither a body nor a mind, they are subject to international laws, they ca...
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10 MAR 2017 by ideonexus

 Flow Promotes Learning

Experiences that are well aligned with flow are those that we have no trouble committing to for a long time. We concentrate on them for hours at a time because we’re getting rewarded for that concentration. Even more important, perhaps, is that when we’re playing games, we want to enter that deep state of concentration. Well-crafted experiences offer a deep and effortless involvement that separates the experience of play from the experience of ordinary life. These experiences are enjoyabl...
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30 DEC 2016 by ideonexus

 Magnus Speaks on Knowledge

Magnus turned from Mortarion and walked to the centre of the amphitheatre, lifting his hands out to his sides and slowly turning on the spot as he spoke. “Imagine the Imperium of the future, a golden Utopia of enlightenment and progress, where the scientist and the philosopher are equal partners with the warrior in crafting a bounteous future. Now imagine the people of that glorious age looking back through the mists of time to this moment. Think what they will know and what they would mak...
Folksonomies: enlightenment knowledge
Folksonomies: enlightenment knowledge
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21 MAR 2015 by ideonexus

 Lego Letter About Gender

To Parents The urge to create is equally strong in all children. Boys and girls. It’s the imagination that counts. Not skill. You build whatever comes into your head, the way you want it. A bed or a truck. A dolls house or a spaceship. A lot of boys like dolls houses. They’re more human than spaceships. A lot of girls prefer spaceships. They’re more exciting than dolls houses. The most important thing is to put the right material in their hands and let them create whatever appeals t...
Folksonomies: parenting gender
Folksonomies: parenting gender
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24 AUG 2014 by ideonexus

 The Not-Believing-In-God-Glasses

But then I thought, "But I don't know how to not believe in God. I don't know how you do it. How do you get up, how do you get through the day?" I thought, "Okay, calm down. Let's just try on the not-believing-in-God glasses for a moment, just for a second. Just put on the no-God glasses and take a quick look around and then immediately throw them off. So I put them on and I looked around. I'm embarrassed to report that I initially felt dizzy. I actually had the thought, "Well, how does the...
Folksonomies: atheism god
Folksonomies: atheism god
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03 MAR 2014 by ideonexus

 The Danger of Scientific Ignorance in a Science-Based Civ...

I have a foreboding of an America in my children's or grandchildren's time — when we're a service and information economy; when nearly all the key manufacturing industries have slipped away to other countries; when awesome technological powers are in the hands of a very few, and no one representing the public interest can even grasp the issues; when the people have lost the ability to set their own agendas or knowledgeably question those In authority; when, clutching our crystals and r...
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We are more reliant on science than ever before, but we are also most disdainful of it.

07 FEB 2014 by ideonexus

 The Invention of Printing Threatens the Church

This new invention of printing has produced various effects of which Your Holiness caimot be ignorant. If it has restored books and learning, it has also been the occasion of those sects and schisms which daily appear. Men begin to call in question the present faith and tenets of the Church; the laity read the scriptures and pray in their vulgar tongue. Were this suffered the common people might come to believe that there was not so much use of the clergy. If men were persuaded that they coul...
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[Cardinal] Thomas Wolsey.