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Digger

Member Since 09 Aug 2015
Offline Last Active Nov 09 2017 01:15 AM
*****

Topics I've Started

A.I. Godhead - Religions of the Future

29 September 2017 - 03:24 PM

Former Google engineer Anthony Levandowski is emerging from the shadow of a self-driving lawsuit to create a robot god.
 
The present continues to take inspiration from science-fiction author Isaac Asimov’s visions of the future. In “The Last Question,” Asimov conceived of an artificial intelligence project known as Multivac. Its purpose was to solve for the inevitable heat death of the universe, but in the end, it becomes that answer.
 
Levandowski seems to have taken that story very closely to heart. His newly founded Way of the Future organization, whose filings were first uncovered by Wired, exists to “develop and promote the realization of a Godhead based on artificial intelligence and through understanding and worship of the Godhead contribute to the betterment of society.”
 
Yes, you read that right. To quote Wired’s Mark Harris, “God is a bot, and Anthony Levandowski is his messenger.” At least, that is the plan.
 
Extreme futurists like Ray Kurzweil have replaced religion with faith of their own in the form of a technological Singularity. Elon Musk and his peers, however, are much less confident in humanity’s ability to survive its own future creations. He has called AI “potentially more dangerous than nukes,” and compared the rise of super AI to “summoning the demon.” At a 2014 conference, he warned, “…in all those stories where there’s the guy with the pentagram and the holy water, it’s like – yeah, he’s sure he can control the demon. Doesn’t work out.”
 
Former Transhumanist presidential candidate Zoltan Istvan believes God and AI may not be separate in the first place. He sees that potential god as “the most powerful of all singularities,” a being that “has certainly already become pure organized intelligence” and “spans the universe through subatomic manipulation of physics.”
 
 
 

Mysterious Metal Towers Propped in Tunnels & Bridges

28 September 2017 - 03:47 PM

Mystery Surrounds Metal Towers Popping Up In Tunnels & Bridges
 
Mysterious metal towers are popping up at local tunnels, and soon they’ll start appearing at bridges, too.
 
But even people on the MTA board in charge of the towers can’t say why they’re being used or what’s in them, CBS2’s Dave Carlin reports.
 
Jose Lugo said the tall metal towers quickly appeared up after the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel tolls booths came down.
 
“We don’t really know what’s the purpose of this,” he told Carlin.
 
It’s a $100 million MTA project shrouded in secrecy, with 18 of them for tunnels and bridges. So what are they exactly?
 
The MTA’s man in charge of the bridges and tunnels, Cedrick Fulton, dodged Carlin’s questions Wednesday.
 
“I said no comment,” he said.
 
 
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Chemical Waste Spilling from Harvey's Wake

02 September 2017 - 12:43 PM

New dangers lurk in Harvey’s wake
 
The water was leaving, at last. But, across Southeast Texas on Thursday, new dangers kept appearing in Hurricane Harvey’s wake.
 
Above, Environmental Protection Agency planes sniffed for toxic-chemical releases. Below, there was floodwater that authorities warned could contain pollutants and pathogens. In between, there were authorities and people trying to find order and supplies in a landscape totally changed by the massive storm.
 
 
Harvey pounded the nation's chemical epicenter. What's in the foul-smelling floodwater left behind?
 
Broken tanks, factory fires and ruptured pipes are thought to have released a cocktail of toxic chemicals into the waters. Explosions that released thick black smoke were reported at the Arkema Inc. chemical plant, where floods knocked out the electricity, leaving the facility outside Houston without refrigeration needed to protect volatile chemicals.
 
Exhaustive investigations by the Environmental Protection Agency and the National Academy of Engineering after Hurricane Katrina, in which floodwaters languished in New Orleans for about six weeks, showed that toxic concentrations and the resulting exposures were too low to cause significant long-term health problems.
 
That festering flood caused a stench for weeks that left soldiers gagging for air as they flew helicopters 2,000 feet over the city. The Army Corps of Engineers had to pump the water out of New Orleans, much of which lies below sea level.
 
The situation is far different in Houston, where the floodwaters are receding much faster.
 
But because Houston is far more industrialized, Harvey could have a much larger potential for leaving a toxic trail.
 
Texas regulators urged caution. “Floodwaters may contain many hazards, including infectious organisms, intestinal bacteria, and other disease agents,” the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality said in a statement. “Precautions should be taken by anyone involved in cleanup activities or any others who may be exposed to floodwaters.”
 

Is Putin trolling Trump?

11 August 2017 - 05:47 PM

Russian spy plane buzzes over DC and Trump’s New Jersey golf course
 
The “semi-routine” mission appeared to be a slight ribbing of the president 
 
A Russian air force spy plane flew from Moscow to the U.S. on Wednesday, buzzing over the nation’s capital before making a pass over Bedminster, New Jersey, where President Donald Trump is currently vacationing at one of his golf resorts. The flight path of the jet suggests the Russians might have had Trump in mind during their reconnaissance mission.
 
Under the 1992 Treaty on Open Skies, 34 participating states (including Russia and the U.S.) allow reconnaissance missions over the other’s territory.  The U.S. State Department says Russia and the U.S. have buzzed each other 165 times over the past 15 years. These missions are highly controlled, typically involving representatives of the country being observed participating in the mission.
 
 
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NASA’s new Mars rover is completely insane

01 August 2017 - 01:22 PM

Mars Rover to Help Visitor Complex Kick off New Mars Exhibit
 
It looks like something out of this world, but that’s exactly where it would work. A futuristic Mars rover concept vehicle was recently unveiled at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex with a goal of inspiration and education as NASA continues developing plans for its journey to the Red Planet.
 
The rover operates on an electric motor, powered by solar panels and a 700-volt battery. The rover separates in the middle with the front area designed for scouting and equipped with a radio and navigation provided by the Global Positioning System. The back section serves as a laboratory which can disconnect for autonomous research. While this exact rover is not expected to operate on Mars, one or more of its elements could make its way into a rover astronauts will drive on the Red Planet.
 
 
 
 
That being said, this isn’t a NASA product. Despite being shown off at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and wearing NASA’s own badge right on its nose, the vehicle was actually crafted by a team of custom car builders who were clearly aiming for a specific look at the expense of all else. Still, the rover is a pretty capable machine, and is capable of speeds as high as 70 mph (around 15 mph on Mars) via its electric drivetrain. You definitely won’t see NASA sending one of these into space any time soon, but it sure is pretty to look at.
 
 
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