Categories
Philosophy

Getting Off

Cultural processing of information is one of the main tasks we carry out. It is costly and can be very difficult. Our brains are on one hand dedicated to the maintenance and sustainable continuity of the bodily vessels that support them but also must process the symbolic complexity required to sustain the systems of culture […]

Categories
Philosophy

You are the Culture that is You

There’s an idiom to the effect that when you find yourself in a traffic jam you are never “stuck in traffic”, you are traffic. It’s something of a cognitive and linguistic reflex to identify an artefact, entity or system as a bounded or isolated fact in the forest of references and definitions that we inhabit. […]

Categories
Philosophy

Trusting Technology?

In our colloquially-asserted hard borders and boundaries as difference and distance between human and machine I wonder if we do not, indeed, simply replicate the questions of trust that exist between persons and groups in embodied, organic intelligence. The relationships between human beings and their technologies are only really a special case of a much […]

Categories
politics

Political Chaos

Context: World Politics at the Edge of Chaos: Reflections on Complexity and Global Life I have been deep down a rabbit hole of seeking to apply these complexity thinking insights more broadly for the last few years. One key, kernel and core takeaway is that (we) human beings seem on the whole quite poorly equipped […]

Categories
information

Breathe In: Lungs, Language, Civilisation

There is a relationship between speech and cognition. There is also a relationship between written language and intelligibility. The longer and more convoluted a sentence, the harder it becomes to understand. The harder the sentence is to understand, the less likely it will self-replicate through artefacts, entities and systems of communication. What this means is […]

Categories
Philosophy

All the Simple Things

What is known (or is believed to be known) varies, adapts and undergoes the relentless metamorphosis of entangled streams of intersubjective abstraction we experience as cultural (and now, explicitly, technological) reality, but amongst all this effervescing percolation and uncertain intentions of identity and difference there remains a constant. The song, that is, remains the same […]

Categories
cybernetics

A.I., Creativity, Copyright and Plagiarism in Art

Context: Copyright infringement in artificial intelligence art I know a developer that pulled all their code from Github because of Copilot. It is an interesting area of study because, much as has been said of Mozart, AI in its variously generative species are in essence not doing anything profoundly new, they are doing what has […]

Categories
Philosophy

The Theatre of Belief

I’ve been fascinated for some time in the many ways that systems of belief are essentially performative. Those beliefs that people hold to be self-evident and unquestionably true exist almost exclusively as public expressions of identity and cultural affiliation. In both religion and politics, but not limited to these, the expression and coded pantomime that […]

Categories
technology

UFO Technology Defies Known Physics

Our fundamental theories of physics are only one experimentally validated “local minima” in a much vaster logical as mathematical and material cartography of possibility. If there is something fundamental that we are not understanding here, it represents a salient moment to ponder which of our axioms are incomplete, misinformed or obsolete. That is the point […]

Categories
Philosophy

Mirror, Mirror: Enigmas in Language

Context: — Three ideas from linguistics that everyone in AI should know — I do wonder if we might fundamentally misrepresent our relationship to these systems of symbolic communication as something of an irreducible function of language itself. Noting here that the persistent problems of these LLMs with bias, truth values and drift into effectively […]

Categories
narrative

Narratives Matter

Viewed in gestalt – cultural artefacts, entities and systems generate positive (and negative) feedback loops as a generative discontinuity of communication system self-reference that produces the semiotic and meme-effervescing environment in which their own symbolic sustainability and intelligible continuity remains possible. Given sufficient time and enough degrees of freedom, cultural (and technological) communication systems quite […]

Categories
history

Culture as Error, History as Misunderstanding

We are so entrained to think in terms of cultural continuity as a measure of successful system self-replication that we might never perceive or understand that the most significant moments in any history are shaped more (or at least as much) by difference and dissonance than by continuity and predictability. These stochastic inflections points of […]