Internet: It’s Complicated

its-a-complicated-world

There is a problem with the internet.  It has forgotten its roots.  It has forgotten HTML.  It has forgotten LaTeX. It has forgotten WordPerfect.  It has forgotten television.  It has forgotten radio.  It has forgotten film.  It has forgotten phonographs.  It has forgotten photographs.  It has forgotten the Gutenberg Press.  It has forgotten the Alphabet.  It has forgotten Arabic Numerals.  It has forgotten Hieroglyphics.  It has forgotten music.  It has forgotten speech.

The internet is fascinated with digital waveforms.  They don’t realize that digital waveforms are phenomenally primitive.  As a consequence the internet is phenomenally complicated.  We have a whole generation trying to use metaphors of analog media equipment represented on digital media equipment.  It is complete crap and it does not occur to anyone.  Word processors are crap.  Spreadsheets are crap.  Presentations are crap.  Vector Graphics are crap.  Audios are crap.  Videos are crap.  Their formats and editors are crap.  Complex useless crap that many people are making a good living making more complicated to guarantee their meal tickets and they don’t even know it.  They use words like “organic”, “innovative”, “2.0”, “web”, “village”, “technology”, “entertainment”, “design”, “thinking”, “visual”, “global”, “climate”, “change”, “open”, “source”, “search”, “apple”, “i”, “my”, “face”, “google”, “twit”, “social”, “network”, “pirate”.  They hire lots of “numerati”, “literati”, “vidirati”, “audirati”, “timerati”, “grapherati”.  The words are meaningless and the people don’t know their assholes from first base.  They measure their credibility by their credit rating.

You ask them a “Simple” question and you get the “Complex” answer.  They don’t hear the question and don’t speak the answer.

They are shotgun happy pretending to be rifle sad.

Simplicity eats when it is hungry, sleeps when it is tired, doesn’t work or play.  Simplicity never leaves and never arrives.  Simplicity neither asks nor tells the time.  Simplicity is the crooked path that is the shortest distance.  Simplicity is periodic and chaotic.  Simplicity folows but has no leaders; leads but has no followers.

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25 Bubbles: Information Technology

big_bubbles_blossom

1. Service Oriented Architecture will create more problems than it will solve

2. Relational databases have reached the end of their innovative value

3. Object oriented programming is based on a fictional ontology

4. Unified Modeling Language is incapable of abstracting systems

5. Current enterprise architectures are conceptually naive

6. The world wide web is 80 percent data slum surrounding 20 percent data excess

7. The majority of communication on the internet has no goal or purpose

8. Business uses information technology to demonstrate due diligence and then ignores it

9. Merging scientific databases is useless because they have no consistent metrics

10. The central processing unit is an inefficient and ineffective brute force antique

11. Data has never been accurately and precisely represented, understood or stored

12. We do not understand the information technology of genetics

13. We do not understand the information technology of chemistry

14. We do not understand the information technology of physics

15. Information technology is simply a popular metaphor not the reality of the universe

16. Computerized climatological models have no predictive capability at all; our understanding of climate change is hindsight

17. Weather prediction is based on satellite images not computer modeling

18. Computer scientists have no idea what consciousness is nor does anyone else

19. Business models and data models are like oil and water
20. Silicon Valley and every corporation affiliated with it will not save the world

21. Science does not have its rightful place in information technology

22. Little information technology involves design, most of it is craft

23. Calling a programmer an engineer does not make a programmer an engineer

24. Calling a programmer a designer does not make a programmer a designer

25. There is hope, but the people who got us here definitely will not get us there

Jared Diamond: Societal Collapse

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If you listen carefully to what Jared Diamond is saying in the TED video above, he is describing not a five part, but a six part power curve into a systemic singularity. This has been one of the core themes of discussion of this blog.  We all seem to be too close to our problems to see the commonality.  The interrogatives come into play here:

  1. Goals
  2. People
  3. Functions
  4. Forms
  5. Times
  6. Distances

Times and Distances being the basis on which the higher orders are built.

When we look at the recent economic “crisis” we see 300 trillion in currency circulating and roughly 1 trillion to 2 trillion shifting suddenly and unexpectedly.  We witnessed a systemic collapse, a singularity, a tipping point, a power curve, an exponential change, a phase transition or whatever label you want to call it.  These have been happening everywhere since Time and Distance began in different contexts and orders both in human and non-human systems.

What Jared Diamond and other alarmists are implying is that human society is now a system approaching its final singularity in this century on this planet.  We are implying that today we are experiencing a less than one percent crisis on a power curve into a singularity.  How many more iterations will the global system withstand?  Will humanity make the step into space successfully before we experience a global dark age?  How will the six or more factors in the power curve play out?

The truth to me appears to be that power curves whether they play out or not result in either a systemic climax or anti-climax followed by a systemic collapse.  Would it not be better if we experienced a systemic climax that led to us expanding into the solar system?

Systemic collapse seems to be the fashion of this generation.  Every generation looks with fascination at its own youth, maturition, reproduction and acceleration into mortality.  Some die early, some die late, but all die.  It is an irrevocable law of nature.  It is not about self-interest.  It is about what self-interest is defined as.

Related Posts:

Beyond the Singularity

Servitas and Libertas

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It Is All Natural

I have had the unfortunate privilege to read some of the work of Jean Jacques Rousseau and I wish I had had the liberty to bash his brains out. Rousseau is the bane of humanity for one reason: his definition of natural and artificial. The truth is there is no such distinction and there never was.

Everything on this planet is natural. Every tree, every pollution belching factory, every cloud, every strip mine, every river, every nuclear bomb. Man and the products of man are natural. There never was a noble savage.

So all you stupid environmentalists can shove your pastoral myths and recognize that progress is inevitable. Hunter gatherer society is at an end worldwide. Agriculture and Aquaculture will take over and will transform into industrial capacities. Urbanization and urban sprawl will continue unabated as new energy sources are found.

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Rousseau was not describing a lost state of man. He was describing a future state of man. The savage is gradually becoming noble. Stephen Pinker backs me up in the following video:

Philosophy: Kitsch

After expressing my opinion in the last post, it was interesting to reflect on this novel, The Unbearable Lightness of Being, by Milan Kundera.

In the novel, this Czech veteran of Communist oppression talks about what he calls, “kitsch”

Kitsch has its source in the categorical agreement with being.

But what is the basis of being? God? Mankind? Struggle? Love? Man? Woman?

Since opinions vary, there are various kitsches: Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Communist, Fascist, democratic, feminist, European, American, national, international.

Since the days of the French Revolution, one half of Europe has been referred to as the left, and the other half as the right. Yet to define one or the other by means of the theoretical principles it professes is all but impossible. And no wonder: political movements rest not so much on rational attitudes as on the fantasies, images, words, and archetypes that come together to make up this or that political kitsch.

The fantasy of the Grand March that Franz was so intoxicated by is the political kitsch joining leftists of all times and tendencies. The Grand March is the splendid march on the road to brotherhood, equality, justice, happiness; it goes on and on, obstacles not withstanding, for obstacles there must be if the march is to be the Grand March.

The dictatorship of the proletariat or democracy? Rejection of the consumer society or demands for increased productivity? The guillotine or an end to the death penalty? It is all beside the point. What makes a leftist a leftist is not this or that theory but his ability to integrate any theory into the kitsch called the Grand March.

What we are facing now is the kitsch of Global Warming and the kitsch of Climate Change. One adopted by the leftist Grand March and one adopted by the rightists. The only real difference between the two is the vocabulary of the particular kitsch. The real issue, what is happening to the environment, is irrelevant to both sides. All that is important is which kitsch generates the greatest emotional appeal.

All religions are philosophies and science is also a philosophy. If we apply the Pareto principle to science only 20% of science uses valid hypothesis, oberservation, method, data, apparatus and events. 80% of science is suspect. And a bunch of priests of science will not persuade me that they are somehow superior morally or intellectually to me or anyone else. When I think about eugenics, lobotomies, unnecessary medical procedures, chemical, biological and nuclear toxins and weaponry, non-biodegradable waste and the plethora of other gifts of science, why can’t I say that scientists in the last century have done more damage to the planet than all of history’s religions combined?

So a bunch of climatologists are saying that science has destroyed the environment in less than a century? Big news. Einstein said, “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.” Maybe it is time for Scientists to wake the hell up to what they have created. Perhaps, like Prometheus, scientists should have their livers eaten every day. Because, it appears to me that there is no difference whether a person has many, one or zero gods, Mr. Dawkins. It’s just another vocabulary for another form of kitsch. What we need is a new level of consciousness, higher than the philosophy of science.

And that is how Milan concludes his novel. We have to recognize that everything natural has its own level of consciousness. Nothing living is a machina animata. Nothing dead is machina intertia. Man is not as Descartes claimed, “maître et propriétaire de la nature.” Nature is not a universe of unconscious machines over which humanity is master and proprietor. And that, science cannot accept.

Environment: Please, Give Me Better Evidence

I have been following the Global Warming/Climate Change debate for some time and I am frustrated. I am frustrated with the beating that science and free speech are taking.

I watched a TED.com presentation by Al Gore last night and I was deeply disappointed. I saw little science and reason, and a great deal of anecdotal evidence and emotional appeal. Sometimes I wondered what the examples even had to do with global warming.

I regard science as the best philosophy we have. Give me atheism, reason and logic over anything. However, like all philosophies, its adherents are human and subject to all of humanity’s frailties. We have humans who are trying to meet their physiological needs, their safety needs, their belonging needs, their esteem needs, their self-actualization needs and their transcendence needs as scientists. They have to pay their mortgage and 80% will surrender their ideals and objectivity to make that payment. The consequent cost in principle, human life, best practices, material, land and time are enormous.

Because of this human frailty, I am skeptical about every scientific claim. The latest “discovery” that makes the one minute daily news bite does not influence me, because I know there has most likely been an error in the hypothesis, observation, method, data, apparatus or events. I also know that a vested interest was paying for that research.

Another thing I am aware of is naturalist philosophy is as flawed as capitalist philosophy. Naturalists tend to spend their time promoting pastoral myth. Capitalists tend to spend their time promoting progress myth. Both have time and again proven themselves out to lunch. And scientists are in both camps.

In saying all of these things I have been accused of “slander” by both sides. And it has led me to the conclusion that I am attacking the correct problem. The problem isn’t Global Warming or Climate Change, the problem is bad science. Climatology is as complex as artificial intelligence and genetics, and the evidence that the climatologists on both sides provide is far from convincing. The samples are not global and the margin for error is too great.

So as a skeptic I say. “Please, give me better evidence” and less myth.