Thursday, September 5, 2019

What's in the Box?

I've been watching the German series Dark, which is fantastic. It helped inspire the following thoughts: 

Momentum, if aided by unaccountability, can become destiny. Making a u-turn becomes increasingly difficult as possibilities (aka potential timelines) are eliminated, which then increases the signal/information from reduced numbers of sources, driving outcomes favoring whichever ideas and cultures have the most momentum--regardless of the best long-term strategy. Paradoxically, momentum can lead to inertia. Such inertia (as well as momentum) has become worse as human beings create ways of living that prioritize the visual over the abstract. 

A picture may be worth 1,000 words, but over time, if it's disconnected from abstract ideas, it will not lead us--or our children--to the truth. In short, information without context dooms humanity to historical loops. Globalization should have increased both the signal and the fidelity of information but has done the opposite, requiring us to determine how to reverse course--before it's too late. 


Bonus, Tom Griffiths, in edge.org: "There are cases where you can tie this very directly to AI... Nick Bostrom has this thought experiment where you make an AI whose goal is to manufacture paperclips, and then it consumes the entire earth manufacturing paperclips... It gets better and better at consuming... until we've paper-clipped ourselves."

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