Recent comments

  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Well, he gets this one thing right, anyway: "For practical purposes, the Internet has become a copyright-free zone." ---This may or may not be a good thing, but it is what it is. Adapt or die. A few other things in the article caught my eye: "My most chronically infringed images, to the extent I can trace their history, are usually taken from the sites of high-profile clients, rather than my own." ---In other words, he has already sold these images. Why should he have some sort of fundamental right to sell the same image over and over and over? Perhaps he should accept that photos are actually just not worth all that much. "But I can’t teach and photograph at the same time,..." "You will never see their efforts online, though, because fear of infringement keeps many of them from uploading." ---And this is simply nonsense. As it happens, I am a member of a Facebook group for insect photography. Every single day, members there post absolutely breathtaking, professional-quality photos that they took themselves. Some of them are professional photographers, others are hugely accomplished amateurs. Either way, having a job does not prevent them from having time for their hobby, and the fact that anyone can download their work does not prevent them from freely posting it anyway. In short, if some photographer decides not to share his work because he worries I might download it, that is too bad for him. I don't care, because there's plenty more, all over the web, the vast bulk of it not images "stolen" from professionals, but uploaded freely by the creators. I happen to be an amateur artist, and I make much use of reference photos. In cases where I don't take my own, I get plenty from the web, without having to "steal" anyone's work - there are nowadays vast libraries of copyright-free reference photos available for artists, specifically created for this purpose by photographers who want to freely share their work. Similarly, YouTube is overflowing with the work of musicians who voluntarily and freely share their work. And I have a suspicion that it is this bounty of generosity that is killing some (but by no means all) of the professionals out there. Anyway, giving lessons in photography is a perfectly noble thing to do. It might not be as much fun as getting paid for your hobby, but then, who says we have an inherent right to make a living off our hobbies? It is not clear what this photographer would want in the place of what we have now, but it seems to me that what he envisions is a veritably nightmarish world, in which everyone on the web lives in perpetual fear of accidentally "stealing" someone's picture, and then getting their pants sued off, and in which creators are constantly scouring the web, looking for thieves. Who the hell can live like that? Not me anyway.
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 3 weeks 6 days ago Web link Emmett Harris
    You are quite right: future generations will have to solve their own problems. Some of these they will inherit form us, but then, we have to deal with problems we inherited from previous generations. That's just how the world works. I am all in favour of not unnecessarily passing on problems to future generations. But then, by doing what we are doing now, we are not just passing along a pollution problem to the next generation. We are also passing along a sound economy, new inventions, advanced science, etc. etc., much of which we are able to do precisely because we have a relatively cheap and abundant energy source. There are already many people who swear by their electric vehicles, which do have some advantages even in the current world. And this just goes to show that here, as with much else, we can leave the decision to free people operating in a free market. As fossil fuels become scarcer, electric vehicles will begin to make ever more and more sense, and the switch will happen without the government needing to enforce it. As for the source of power, perhaps future generations will come up with something we cannot even imagine today. But if not, I see no particular reason not to just use what we already have, namely nuclear power, supported by renewables.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 4 weeks 21 hours ago Web link Westernerd
    That is going nowhere...
  • tomcat's picture
    tomcat 4 weeks 1 day ago Web link Emmett Harris
    Then it would make certainly more sense to burn the better fuel directly in the car engine and avoid all the conversions and the long ways of energy- transport of a powerplant+battery solution. Generally spoken: I may have left 3- or -in the best case- 4 decades to live and for this timespan I am rather optimistic about the aviabilty of something to burn to drive the wheels. Compared to the Generation of my father I have had a much higher Quality of Life and If I go back further in the "good" old Times of the 19th Century this difference becomes even larger. If I take H.G Wells timemachine to get a average person of this past time to our present, show him everything and then ask this individual to make sacrifices in his own time so that we in our Present could have a better Life you may guess the answer. The future Generation has a very good chance of e.g. cures against cancer, Parkinson, Alzheimer, a longer Lifespan etc. Priceless. And they will have to find a new source of energy other than burning oil/coal or nuclear fission /fusion. I still prefer a cheaper and faster old fashioned car to a more expensive and supposedly eco-friendly one.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 4 weeks 1 day ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    I believe it's Charles W. Johnson who posits there are 4 different versions of Capitalism in Markets Not Capitalism.  
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 4 weeks 1 day ago
    Progress
    Blog entry Jim Davies
    I love that last paragraph, Jim.  Great quote!  :-)
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 4 weeks 2 days ago Web link Emmett Harris
    Apparently, it depends to some extent on how the power is generated in the first place: http://shrinkthatfootprint.com/electric-cars-green And of course, while coal burning power stations will still churn out smoke, a city full of electric cars may well have cleaner air. We root strikers tend to be pretty skeptical about the whole green and carbon footprint issues anyway. I think people bark up the wrong tree here. The conversion to electric vehicles may or may not be a good thing, but in the longer run it is likely inevitable, for the simple reason that cheap fossil fuel will run out. Government won't need to convince (or force) people to make the switch. People will do so themselves as soon as there is no more cheap fuel left for their conventional vehicles, and electric ones become cheaper than gasoline powered ones. And where will the electricity come from, once we have run out of coal and gas? My guess is mainly nuclear, with generous support from renewables. The contribution of the greens in all this will be to use computers powered by nuclear energy to run Facebook campaigns against nuclear energy. :-)
  • tomcat's picture
    tomcat 4 weeks 6 days ago Web link Emmett Harris
    Why should a battery / electric car be more eco-friendly than a car with a standard engine ? Because it has no exhaust ? 1) In a car with a combustion engine fossil fuel is burned, heat is directly converted into mechanical energy which is used to drive the wheels. 2)In a car with a battery fossil fuel is burned in a powerplant (One big exhaust instead of many small). Heat is converted into mechanical energy which is again converted into electrical energy which is then (usually over long distances) transported to the individual household. There it could be used to charge the battery (another conversion). Then the battery is discharged(again energy conversion) to provide the power for the electric motor in the car. Every Conversion and transportation of energy means an inevitable loss of energy. If anyone declares that Method 2) is more energy-efficient than Method 1) (and thus more eco-friendly), then this person should stop wasting his/her time with electric cars and go right into perpetuum mobile research.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 5 weeks 1 day ago Web link Emmett Harris
    From a commenter on this article: "Sticker shock when you buy an EV[1] and a even great shock when you decide to trade this White Elephant in when the warranty on the battery bank is near or past it's warranty. What sane person is going to want to buy one of these EV's when they know the cost of replacing the battery bank? Guess who is going to take the hit when you trade your EV in? It sure won't be the dealer! So much for all that money you saved at the pump :-( PS You are stuck with going to the dealer to have these beast service. I think I'd rather have a root canal!" According to one source, "On average a 24 kWh battery pack could cost you around $17,000 or so". _________________________________ [1] Tesla Roadster - The Roadster is the most expensive electric car out there. After the max tax credit of $7,500 it is still a fraction over $100,000. Add in the home battery pack which will be an extra $3,000 plus taxes, tags, etc, the total upfront cost should be around $110,000.
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 5 weeks 1 day ago Web link Emmett Harris
    Good looking website, my friend. Best of luck in your new venture. The article, however, was in reference to "electric cars". ;-) "We're going to lead the way in the fight against climate change by putting a million EVs on the roads, which means making them affordable to all drivers, not just the wealthy." ~ Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles)
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 2 days ago Web link Emmett Harris
    Hell, Suv2, I've been operating with eco-friendly vehicles for years. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 2 days ago
    Who?
    Page Paul Hein
    Was just thinking, Paul, that it'll soon be a full half-century since I last voted in a political election. I voted for Barry Goldwater. But for you, I might just consider registering again so I can cast my one vote -- Paul Hein for Grand Wizard! Let's see...where do I have to go to pay "my" poll tax??? Sam
  • Suverans2's picture
    Suverans2 5 weeks 3 days ago Web link Emmett Harris
    If consumers could afford Eco-friendly vehicles, the state wouldn't need to provide incentives.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 5 weeks 3 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Real adjusted incomes for most Americans have remained the same since 1973, but not for these gilded ones. I think we'd be better off with corrupto-crats like from Tammany Hall days or even like Detroit/Wayne County has these days, provided that they had no civil service, tenure, unions,  or job protection of any kind and could be fired with no recourse or appeal whenever they screw up, get caught, are embarrassing, are too numerous, or just for the bloody hell of it. At least there'd be some accountablity forced upon them. Mayors, governors, county execs, presidents, etc. come and go, but this class of politician is forever. That's the problem.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 5 weeks 4 days ago Page Lawrence M. Ludlow
    @Paul. I can only assume that you have not carefully read Kinsella's essay. I have read it twice and listened to it as many times, and each time, I gain more understanding of the topic. Kinsella has done us a great favor by carefully exploring the misunderstandings and explaining the distinctions between sloppy use of terms such as "self-ownership" vs. "ownership of one's body" as well as the problems of vague usages such as "owning one's labor" and "mixing one's labor" and the problems subsequently caused by them. He clearly demonstrates the importance of the clarifying the concept of homesteading by refining it as making a first, unambiguous claim (taking possession). Just as important, he shows how the fallacious concept of "intellectual property" actually destroys and is used to collectivize physical property and destroy unambiguous claims--thus undermining the concept of ownership. He also correctly identifies the roots of IP in both monopoly and censorship.   Consequently, I cannot fathom how someone can so quickly dismiss such a clarifying and pathbreaking piece of writing as Kinsella's. Fortunately, the caliber of his work and the clarity and precision that he brings to the discussion and the terminology itself will outlive mere sneers. Kinsells's essay, "Against Intellectual Property," has not only gathered the varieties of perception about the concept in one coherent work, but he has elucidated the confusion surrounding each false understanding of it--chipping away what is useless, confusing, and contradictory. Rarely have I read an essay that does as much to de-mystify the sloppy usage that generally surrounds these terms--even among libertarians. And after leveling the ground, he builds a much cleaner, clearer thesis about the purpose, origins of, and value of the concept of property and pseudo-property. To dismiss the useful concept of rights--which Kinsella would probably agree exsits solely as a useful tool to help us minimize conflict and has no subsisting reality--is at a minimum incredibly hasty. Even if we can all agree that the concept of "rights" (as in the case of any concept) are an invention of our minds, they still retain great value because they refer--as Stephan Molyneux would say--to "universally preferable behaviors" or eminently useful value systems. Paul, I think you owe readers an apology for dismissing Kinsella's genuine contribution to this formerly muddy discipline of libertarian theory. Your claim was unsupported. And I hope a new reader, encountering your statement, will quickly dismiss it for what it is and go on to learn from Kinsella. I suspect envy is at the root of your comment--bar one, the deadliest of the seven deadly sins of Dante in his Purgatorio.  
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 5 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Yeah, I screwed up sam. That was the link I meant to use.  My bad.
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Cutting through all the bull crap about the 1,500 pages somebody "filed" in the white man's secret courts, etc etc etc -- it is important to understand something basic: Everything I write here at STR, or post on a "Yahoo Group" (or any other group for that matter) -- or anywhere and everywhere on the internet or on my cellphone or in almost any public venue can be picked up electronically, cataloged by key-word and connected to my phone or email, etc etc etc. That's the age in which we now live. I might spend considerable time, energy and resource encrypting and coding if it makes me feel better. That might cut down the "risk". Somewhat. In addition, there are a whole host of psychopaths out there who do not have my (or your) best interests at heart, and who will gleefully find reason to lock you or me into one of their rape cages. I think there are now over 50,000 US federal "laws" and/or "regulations" under which the white man can pursue me. Or you. But please understand: the white man is stupid. A pompous ass. He depends 100% upon your fear and your paranoia. And your "voluntary compliance". And your statist mentality. Let's not forget our old friend, Étienne de la Boétie. What he wrote nearly 500 years ago is just as applicable today as it was in 1552. The basic principle has not changed. The white man has but two eyes. And only so many jail cells. And a limited number of henchmen to carry out his egregious acts. Granted, within the span of many of our lifetimes -- in our statist thinking, before STR -- we've seen "the-land-of-the-free" morph into the most atrocious police state in the history of mankind. But you can be free. Today. Where you are. You need not change my opinions, or your neighbors', or your family. The place to start is between your ears. Just be free. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Here's the link to the NY Times article for this header: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/14/books/review/francis-fukuyamas-politic... Strangely, I would probably make almost the very same comment were I to "weigh in" here as I did concerning the "Limits of Secession" article posted on STR below. Sam
  • Samarami's picture
    Samarami 5 weeks 6 days ago Web link KenK
    Don't know a lot about Francis Fukuyama, but this link takes one to this article: http://bleedingheartlibertarians.com/2014/09/the-limits-of-secession/ And Sam (no doubt looked upon as a "troll" over at Bleeding Hearts) made this comment on the essay: Thomas Pynchon is quoted as having said, "if they can keep you asking the wrong questions they don't have to worry about answers". Two imposing upon one is not freedom. (Thanks, Delmar England) I am a sovereign state. I'm astounded at how few "libertarians" make that declaration, or even agree that I indeed can be sovereign. Most argue, bicker, and go right back into statist thinking. And "theory". I have no "rights". I have choices. And my choice is to be totally responsible for the security of my property and myself and, to some extent, those I love (to the extent that they want my assistance in their defense). This applies -- whether I reside in Randia, Ruritania, Insula, or New York. Nobody -- certainly anybody associated with a "state" or a "country" or a "nation" -- is going to stand up for my liberty or my freedom. Sam
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 6 weeks 6 days ago Web link Serenity
    Buppert's essay here addresses the question: Is it better to let  states self-destruct over time from their own inherent flaws or help them along with a program of direct action to topple them? The consensus answer seems to be that openly authoritarian states are tougher, but are much more brittle; once they start to wobble, they go down pretty quick, so direct action is likely the better option, albeit a messier one. Liberal democracies on the other hand, are crafted with built -in institutional means which allow the ruling class to implement purely symbolic, non-structural reform/s which act as a safety mechanism which allows the rulers lighten up on the reigns temporarily to release pent up pressures when discontent and alienation rises to “unsafe” levels . Symbolic reforms and minor structural reforms, like chemo-therapy applied to a cancer patient, can drag the state's dying process out for a very, very, long time.
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 7 weeks 3 days ago Web link Bradley Keyes
    From the article: “Plea bargains are extraordinarily common in the American legal system, accounting for roughly 90% of all criminal cases." In other words, in 90% of America's criminal cases, people are convicted without the case ever having actually gone to trial. I would suggest to people to be very careful indeed about accepting plea bargains. They are a handy tool for law enforcement to increase their conviction rates, and little more.
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 7 weeks 4 days ago Web link Bradley Keyes
    I didn't get up for the anthem at an airshow last month, (like for the sixth time in two hours), and I practically got into a fight with some the other attendees. Serious social pressure here, plus the heat and the proximity to the beer tent.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 8 weeks 4 hours ago
    Crime and Punishment
    Page Paul Hein
    "Qui bono?" The prison-industrial complex, and the ruling class. Like everything else in government, it's there for those in government, not for us. As to the particular case, one could argue two people willingly in a fight (if that was in fact the case here) should not be charged no matter what happens. To lock someone up for decades for what happens in a bar fight is madness.
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 8 weeks 2 days ago
    Crime and Punishment
    Page Paul Hein
    Hi Paul,    I always enjoy first person accounts here at STR. And what, pray tell, happened to your buddy? Where or what is he now?   Prison accounts are good because, we are all in our own little prisons, realistically and metaphorically.   Many reasons for prisons, IMHO. The prison "industry" is perhaps the foremost. Another is that the PTB, the elites, like to put commoners like us into prisons to "set an example." Although NO  (or damn few) elites go to prisons anymore.   Having been in a medium security military jail, I realize that the best and worst people end up in prison/jail. Okay, strike that "worst" comment, otherwise the Wall Street gang, and the MIC gang, would be in prison somewhere.   We are a failed republic, one only need to look at our prison "System."
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 8 weeks 4 days ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Thanks, Glen. If you can't put what you want to say on an 8.5x11 sheet of paper, it's not worth saying. :-) Or at any rate, writing more than can be read on one session on the ceramic throne, almost guarantees few people will bother reading it...
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 8 weeks 5 days ago Page Paul Bonneau
    Like that kid who pointed out the king's nakedness, you have a gift, Paul, for describing obvious and important truths that have somehow been ignored by nearly everyone, and then making the situation clear without talking it to death. Nice work.
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 8 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Jim:  An excellent one shared far and wide with every pro-gun group I'm aware of here in VT and elsewhere.  I wrote one on a similar tack a while back myself:   http://strike-the-root.com/defending-state
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 8 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Jim:  An excellent one shared far and wide with every pro-gun group I'm aware of here in VT and elsewhere.  I wrote one on a similar tack a while back myself:   http://strike-the-root.com/defending-state
  • Alex R. Knight III's picture
    Alex R. Knight III 8 weeks 6 days ago Blog entry Jim Davies
    Jim:  An excellent one shared far and wide with every pro-gun group I'm aware of here in VT and elsewhere.  I wrote one on a similar tack a while back myself:   http://strike-the-root.com/defending-state
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 9 weeks 1 day ago Web link Westernerd
    I thought that was Eric Holder's job? He thinks it is.  
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 9 weeks 2 days ago Web link A. Magnus
    Disarming people, making them defenseless, is an act of war.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 9 weeks 2 days ago Page Paul Hein
    "Indeed, punishing criminals is one of government’s few proper activities." Sorry, I disagree. Even if you thought that government was interested in punishing criminals (rather than being a haven for them), you'd still have to prove that punishing criminals is necessary, and that it can't be done without government. That is impossible. If someone tries to rob me, I can shoot him or stab him or beat him to a pulp. I can even simply warn others, who will refuse to deal with him, thus making his life impossible if he does not relent. And even if you manage to do all the above, you still have a problem if your government is not voluntarily funded, because if it is not, then it itself is engaging in "mala in se" criminal action, theft.
  • zygodactyl's picture
    zygodactyl 9 weeks 3 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    It is my opinion that the real reason for the genocide of the Indians was because the Indians were nomads who could move somewhere else quickly and did not respect the taxation from the so-called authorities or their stupid rules. White settlers also had people who moved far away from "governed" society and established their own towns and property lines. Eventually though, the gunvernment moved in and most of the white settlers apparently caved to the idea of some government. The Indians had entire tribes or nations resistant to white politician rule; white men who opposed idiot rule were apparently too scarce. The above comments are extremely rational ones given my reading of history, reading between the lines, and intuition. BUT: I'm not a historian.
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 9 weeks 4 days ago Page Paul Hein
    Nice, to-the-point column, Paul. It's clear and simple enough to make a good introduction to libertarianism (or "sensible thinking" as I sometimes call it) for someone who hasn't yet stepped outside the confinement of Statist conformity, but who has been thinking along the borders. When someone just says what's real in plain language, the way you do here, the truth becomes obvious.
  • Sharon Secor's picture
    Sharon Secor 9 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    HA HA HA!! Excellent comment.
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 9 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    Hey, let's just force the homeless to buy homes! It works well with health insurance, doesn't it?
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 10 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    "He was later arrested by the FBI and plead guilty to related charges of using forbidden speech." Oops, we can't let that happen. Forbidden speech, wow, how evil.
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 10 weeks 4 days ago Web link Government Deni...
    "the public’s right to know about the government’s national security policy" There is no such right, or any right at all. Don't you get embarrassed saying such patently untrue things? http://strike-the-root.com/life-without-rights
  • Paul's picture
    Paul 11 weeks 6 hours ago Web link KenK
    An excellent article to use in any discussion where someone is promoting the Olympics.
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 11 weeks 18 hours ago Web link KenK
    KenK: that is pretty much how I feel too - it's not that I am particularly religious, but I do not share that sense of absolute certainty that I perceive in some atheists.
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 11 weeks 1 day ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Yes, Douglas. Lots of service tech jobs coming, until the robots take them away! And then there's this: Clever USAF captain wants intelligent, autonomous drones to replace manned fighters. The concept art looks very cool. Wonder if they'll have any problems with those? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2723466/The-laser-armed-stealth-...
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 11 weeks 1 day ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Glen,    You saw the tiny R2D2 type servers being used in China? 20-30K each. Service techies soon in demand to fix 'em? Robot Restaurant: Robots cook food and wait ... - Daily Mail
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 11 weeks 1 day ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Thanks for the thoughts and the titles, Tomcat.  It may not be that a machine needs self-awareness to become a danger; bad programming of computers (on purpose and otherwise) has already caused harm and even death, and an extremely powerful computer with access to the internet (and thus to every connected thing on the planet, assuming it's even more clever at such access than human hackers are) could cause real horrors just by following its programming in unexpected ways -- a common trope, of course, as in I, Robot. I enjoy well-written apocalyptic AI stories, but the humans usually win or achieve parity with the AI in the end, in some fashion. Barrat's Our Final Invention is the first book that really made me think about how unlikely that is. It truly frightened me. Humans, including most AI researchers and especially military-related ones (who on Earth would want to connect autonomous AI with modern weaponry?) are in fantasy land on this topic, much the way people expecting the coercive State to be benevolent are. Barrat makes the point (quoting others) that AI will almost by definition be psychopathic in its behavior: no real empathy possible because no shared biological structures, histories, motivations, or needs.  And we keep racing closer. Wired has a story about some of Siri's creators developing  an AI that can re-write its own code on the fly to achieve its goals. Can't imagine anything going wrong with that! http://www.wired.com/2014/08/viv/  
  • Glen Allport's picture
    Glen Allport 11 weeks 1 day ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Thanks for the link! Yeah, Serling was amazing every episode of Twilight Zone looked to have a budget of about $1.98 but many of them are classics -- really thoughtful and insightful.
  • Lawrence M. Ludlow's picture
    Lawrence M. Ludlow 11 weeks 2 days ago Web link KenK
    KenO, exactly
  • KenK's picture
    KenK 11 weeks 2 days ago Web link KenK
    What Dawkin's et al don't seem to grasp is that their atheism is as much a declaration of religious faith as any of the theisms they deny. To wit: They believe that there is no God.  This assertion of their's is just as much a matter of faith on their part as any other religious belief in that the atheists cannot prove empirically or logically that there isn't a god or gods any more than the theists can prove there is. Sure, they can shred the Talmud, Upanishads, Bible, Koran, or other holy texts at will, but that isn't the same thing.  When this discussion comes up in my life, I tell people I am an agnostic, because I dont have enuff faith to be an atheist.
  • tomcat's picture
    tomcat 11 weeks 2 days ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Depends all on how you define "artificial intelligence". An Improved-faster calculating- version of todays computer could, for example be installed in an Android where it mimicks perfectly human behavior and emotions.Nevertheless it is still the the most complex version of an oldfashioned record player/Grammophon. Pseudo-autonom but no real independence. For the horror-scenarios from these movies to happen it would be necessary for a Calculator to become self-aware, thus thinking instead of only (very fast)calculating. Nobody even theoretically knows what creates this "Cogito ergo sum" state of mind in a human being let alone in a machine. To get in a conflict with the humans such a artificial beeing wouldnt have to be evil or reckless like in these Movies. That could very well be the part of the humans to play. You deny such a beeing the right of freedom and existence- Guess what will happen next ? Quote "Golem"/Stanislaw Lem: "The highest Intellect can not be the lowest slave" Good reading about this Theme: Stanislaw Lem(Solaris)->Mostly Stories from the 1960ies and early 70ies. (The Golem-Supercomputer-> Self-Awareness; "THe Invincible"->Swarm intelligence; "Dr. Diagoras"->Experiments with self organizing AI) The Jules Verne of Cybernetics.
  • Douglas Herman's picture
    Douglas Herman 11 weeks 2 days ago
    Superintelligence
    Page Glen Allport
    Glen,    Your thought-provoking column jogged my memory. Waaayyyy back to 1959, and one of the first AI references on TV.  To say Rod Serling was ahead of his time is to say Albert Einstein was a pretty good scientist.   "The Lonely" is an episode set on an asteroid. Looks like Death Valley but a pretty bleak wasteland. Solitary confinement. Check the slim budget Serling had to adapt to. The costumes are retro SciFi to be kind.    The Twilight Zone S01E07 The Lonely
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 11 weeks 2 days ago Web link Mike Powers
    Of course, the renewed threat of terrorism will be a convenient excuse for governments to further erode civil liberties...
  • eugenedw's picture
    eugenedw 11 weeks 2 days ago Web link KenK
    True, and Dawkins was happy all those many years to use Middle East products to drive his car to work, probably never thinking of all the U.S. troops stationed, well, everywhere, to ensure continuous supplies. Still, religious fundamentalism is just silly, and deserves all the satire leveled at it. But Dawkins perhaps throws out the baby with the bathwater when he gets his panties tied in a knot over any and all religion.