Philosophy

Entitlement, or otherwise?

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A while back, the following tweet appeared on my Twitter feed: My sister is doing an experiment: Whenever men walk towards her, she doesn’t move out of the way first. So far she has collided with 28 men. — Anna Breslaw (@annabreslaw) December 13, 2014 Since then, a few of my friends attempted to replicate […]

Philosophy

FYI: World Ending. kthxbye

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I had always assumed that a U.F.O. invasion would occur on a relatively cloudy day.  Everyone would be inside watching TV, lethargic and unaware of the alien armies amassing just outside their windows.  Then — SNAP! — the power would shut off, and the wailing and gnashing of teeth would commence.  Moments later, the alien […]

Philosophy

Common Case vs Base Case

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Pop quiz!  What’s wrong with the following statements? The man pointed to the case of Dr. Peppers across the room and asked whoever was listening, “Hey, could’ja pass me one of them Cokes?” “The best part about the Canon MP560 printer,” remarked the salesman, “is that it allows you to Xerox things in your own […]

Philosophy

Constructing Intelligence

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About a year ago, I was tossing around an idea for a short science fiction story.  The plot was fairly simple: a computer scientist dedicates his life to researching artificial intelligence.  Around the time that he has a breakthrough in his research, he learns that he has a terminal illness, and he only has 6 […]

Philosophy

Universal Axioms and Unmoved Movers

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I was discussing my e-mail with Joel Winstead (one of my colleagues) earlier today, and we got into a very interesting discussion about whether or not the model I was describing was actually operating with “inconsistencies”. To summarize Joel’s point as best I can: it is not an inconsistency if a system contains 2 heuristics […]

Philosophy

I Hate Schemas

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I was planning to write this post in a few days, but I figured it was an appropriate follow-up to my previous post.  I hate schemas.  And when I say “I hate schemas”, I actually mean that they make me noticeably angry.  Sure, I don’t become “punch grandma in the face” angry, but my typing […]

Philosophy

What is “The Model” ?

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The following is an e-mail response that I sent out to some colleagues earlier today.  Although some of the context is missing (ex: “what model?”), I think that most of this e-mail is still understandable.  It really summarizes a number of my thoughts about computers and the universe in general.  So, without further ado:   […]

Philosophy

Majority Rule is Flawed

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The more I think about the previous entry, the more I realize that majority rule is flawed. Is it really necessary for martyrs to appear to push the majority in the correct direction? Why can’t we simply recognize what these people are doing for us and trust their decisions? There must be a better decision […]

Philosophy

The Voice of the Majority

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I don’t want to sound like I oppose Democracy, but I question how effective the popular vote really is. Consider what would happen if we allowed first graders to vote on what they will do in school. Obviously, they’d vote to have recess every class, and no one would actually learn anything. They might have […]