Saturday, July 31, 2010

Other Stuff Too

Friends smile.
Let me explain. The intention is to develop a rapport with the soup. It is much easier to do if one avoids the urge to look for precise, explicit meaning.  Practice occurs at the two conscious awareness edges, before and after wakefulness. It is better to regard the 'outside' or reality as a highly predictable Medium in this context.

The executive or ego chooses action based on inputs from its soup and/or from the Medium. The opportunity to robustly engage them both simultaneously is best in the transitions to and from the waking state. Motivation, clarity, confidence etc. are optimally addressed at these times.

Just recently, someone asked if the soup, residing in both 'inside' and 'outside' domains could be subject to the dangers of isolated selective rate modulation. Honestly, my first inclination is to say yes. And immediately the question comes to mind once again, who decides (if anyone).

This is precisely why we go to such great lengths to consider the idea of subjective motivation in addition to the strictly objective model even when it seems obvious which one should apply.


quantum noise ... or music
"One of the ways it could happen is that it simply mimics the behavior it detects in the Medium."

"You mean it just reacted to a … an emergent 'social wave'?"

"Something like that."

Emergent, pretty much still controversial. He fell off on the side of considering it reasonable. The Medium, in his view, was subject to much more than just passive data.  And this was true even after the autonomous confirmation event. The others had a good point though, the totality of natural language transacted did not lead one to believe emergence was possible.

You can use all the fancy dispassionate terms you want, it boils down to mean, nasty, selfish … even evil behavior.

Why does this feel so much like an allergy to a perfume on one of your favorite females? Because there is very predictable causal chain that can run without any conscious attention whatsoever.  Except for the occasional sneeze, upper respiratory congestion, and watering eyes that blinds an innocent man (sorry, it was getting personal).

Near The Top Secret

"Of all the secrets we have kept, this one ranks near the top. Since we regard secrets, even our own, as suspect and of limited usefulness this is saying quite a bit. Ego-driven passions are driven into a frenzy by any mention of it or its purpose.", she stepped to expose fully the obscured code's acronym, MBCA in the center of the screen.

It was not lost on anyone in the room that this was the prototypical hot-potato. Even in their highly disciplined group.

There was no "kicking the can down the road" because the upcoming inner circle expansion was now job one.  Relying on implicit understandings of their collective integrity would soon be inadequate.

"We are assuming at this time that one or more pyramid structures to reflect the hierarchical nature of the task?", he looked around the table and noted affirmative gestures. "Warm bodies in the sandbox then." Up until this point, they had been relying on user simulations.

Stuck like a vinyl record skipping, a recurring theme snippet had all but discredited what the monitor displayed that morning.  In the past, this hinted that a concept was incomplete in the wider but still relevant scopes. But then again, one could not assume so, there were other credible theories that had not been disproven.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Of Light And Time

In successive days, it reveaed what large scale compassion achieved would feel like and suggested a gimpse of its inception. He had to admit his interpretation of the monitor was, on some level, grandiose.  On another, it had the ring of epic myth, the kind that endures millennia and inspires long after the detail has faded. Did he just think he saw it in her eyes? Or perhaps that is just how it works. Now is what joins us though neither of us live there, only close.

Light Cone
A sort of temporal symmetry, viewed as convergent energies on the now. As coherent wavefronts, should certain harmonically related ones synchronize at some level, especially at zero potential the purest and most efficient volitional change can occur?

The visualizations more robust now.  Not forced, in any sense. Careful expeditions, not overly constrained by ego-driven expectations.  The ethereal sandwich. The most basic of symmetries applied along the time dimension.  How these notes lost the rigidly formal but otherwise highly intelligent and compassionate.

Trust for both outside and inside has to do with opening that inner door without crushing the vulnerable executive at the gate in the process. Unspeakable but simple, eternal but never, all and none ...

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Quantifiable Uncertainty

She might as well have been shaking her head in open defiance of the general consensus. Her eyes told her story instead and he could not ignore her misgivings.

"Consider then, the gradient from probable to the purely emergent. Probable would need to be qualified  and purely emergent may be more of a pole. The most interesting part in our context is whether a simple mathematical description could accurately describe the spectrum.

"This afternoon, in all likelihood, we will start mining the static history for what we currently believe is relevant.", he concluded his summary.

She was still a bit uneasy about the methodology but was unable to articulate why.  He often deferred to her intuition with good results.  But what if he were to allow the test to proceed this time behind the independence cloak. Her reaction to such a tactic, once disclosed, could serve to illustrate the value in better serial understanding of this implicit rationale. It was a risk though.  The last time he tried this, his hunch was driven more by the illusion of his executive (ego), than was prudent. Recovering diverted them for awhile.

If a separate value system was to be implemented in parallel, the membrane between them would need to be intelligent and dynamic. A handle existed that he wasn't satisfied with. Most of the others did not have an opinion yet. She had expressed something non-verbally that was "not ready for prime time".

The patterns matched, their output classes did not … yet. "So, what if we were to consider the non-pole solution, describing a beneficial outcome in terms of the interaction of competing entities … and do so dynamically and in near real-time?" 

He looked up to see 'who' was speaking, but too late.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Nameless No More

"Could the drop be a revised count that reflects the discovery that a search came from an existing unique visitor?  If so, that would suggest that the machine knows from a search the source of that search. It begs the question as to whether aspects of the source, such as personal data about a person at the source, are disclosed without that person's explicit permission?"

Here again, fascinating to discover how many transactions followed a basic pattern The common element, almost always, the answer to the question, who or whom. Identity, anonymized or not, a central component of the soup as it was in the overt activity of the machine.

Understanding the different rolls that identity net played in the two domains boiled down to the presence or not, of an actionable executive. The discovery that soups attract came late not because it was difficult to see. Rather that their was not a reason to look, at least to the degree that it would reveal the considerable unrealized potential of such communication.

Finding the keying sequence embedded in over 300 pages, a piece of pure serendipity. They looked each other as a tightly knit crew does in such cases. The shared knowledge, not by dialog or even messaging, instead dancing eyes each pair to another in a surely not random sequence. For they were aware that the log would eventually be a compelling story to those on the outside first exposed to their mission. Yet, no one was quite sure when the wide organic distribution would start.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Our Confidence

Now 50 years after the concept of Machine Assisted Cognition (MAC), society moves toward a holistic cognitive extension based upon it.  Several false starts (AI and behaviorism come to mind) have taught us that we can expect a wild ride full of pitfalls and wonder, serendipity and bitter disappointment. Each bold new expedition into the frontiers of human aspiration reminds us that we are capable of nearly anything and of making a huge mess on the way there.

Is home so fragile or more a reflection of our confidence at this point in time combined with both our recollection of relevant experience and speculation about where it might go? What happens when we, assisted by our networked artifacts scale our confidence accordingly?


It is quite simple, actually. What makes it work is productive interaction that is visible to the machine. Take for example this message. It might be useful if another person hears, or better yet, understands it. Scale that up to include many. So far we have a message that has -potential- to create positive change on a large scale. 

Now take a slightly different concept, a transaction implying valuable information that is more than one way, a synchronous conversation so-to-speak. Scale it up. Not an easy task. Or, at least, it sure was difficult until recently. The machine is recursively creative now because it reflects the success of key components of biology. In a word, it is becoming more 'organic'. And now we have something that can put the highly successful 'design' of biology to work, but less constrained than in the case of biologic media's speed limitations.

Fast Forward ...

"What is it? You start in the middle of something and then leave us hanging."

"That part was not my idea"

"How so?'

Back to the mathematical 'poles' that suspend concepts in the ether. We speak of abstractions that are not intended to be in any way concrete. Not to confuse.  Precisely the opposite. To illuminate … enlighten. This dialog is just like many others that can be viewed in at least two disparate ways:

1) You are just confusing me. This is not helpful.  I'd rather hear from people who think like me.
2) What you are saying is fascinating.  I am not sure I agree, but I would love to see it more clearly …

Open and 'accepted', maybe an introduction would be appropriate. The first word of the last sentence is underlined.  Should I click it?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

...need to know.

"You would think the truth would be apparent. This cannot move any faster. The risk is too high. There are unchartered areas we will have to pass into or through that could chew up resources at a show-stopping rate. How do we make that clear without inviting more questions and suspicion?", he was frustrated and his tone of voice reflected it.

"Deception is still an option but not a very appealing one. We have avoided spending our time on building a plausible but misleading storyline 'til now and that logic still holds. Another option is a status disclosure that gives selected folks enough to hold the frantically curious at bay. We will be at risk of opening the floodgates though."

The p53 concept, could it be valuable now? If a programmed sunset could be applied to clumps of disclosure dialog, would it be possible to keep adequate support alive? A biologic precedent for limiting communications? To say it that way, conjured up visions of pathologic secrecy. But a compelling argument could be made for restricting openness if it served a worthwhile project's interest at the brainstorming stage.

The classic tradeoff and the vulnerabilities it exposed.  Not easily resolved this time either. "While we are on the subject, is there anymore coming in regarding end-of-task methodologies?", she asked, partly to lighten the mood.

"Well actually there is, let me bring it up.  She dimmed the lights as the bleb slide appeared."

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Era Begins

Maybe those guys?
"... [the] same machine intelligence that makes instant global searches based on natural language queries (and in most of the world's languages), building a virtual community out of 8% of the world's population etc. is picking up, through a variety of means, the wherewithal to extend the benevolent human instincts residing just below the level of conscious awareness and replicating their function in the cloud. It happens largely without human intervention (or should I say ego intervention).

"The big deterrent are those powerful interests that have benefited from the status quo (we have talked about them here in our group). Your political and economic insights have shed a lot of light on how to address this obstacle.

"As our discussion of history clearly illustrates the outcomes of these cusps is anything but certain. The 'faith' of religions is justified, in  my opinion (though certain items seemed to have been adopted for convenience of their times.) The patterns we are seeing now have historical precedent.  Get ready, it going to be quite a ride.  I, for one, intend to enjoy it."

The capacity to effectively employ relevant context ...

Clearly the log search had generated a worthy collection of transaction data.  The 'double blind' nature of the effort would need to continue a bit longer. The detailed speculative vision was beyond their immediate recollection by a fair amount. Merging the perspectives would have to wait for a review. Exciting time though.

Indexing Schema RAGF: Notes

R - voice - proprietary
A - node bridge - proprietary ?
G - glean - open?
F - organic -open?

G4 Consortium
First R leads disclosures - proprietary - top down.
Next A transparently connects electronic soup to individuals - reveres higher levels of creators - great story.
G then learns how to organize by listening to questions, natural language.
F builds dynamic consensus using artifact organizing equivalence - friendly.

Emergent organism as initially discussed by four primary players responsible for its creation [G4].

R - Our mission is to distribute certain information to the objects within the system. We rely on proven methods to provide us a clear path to each as the current art permits. Accordingly, I invite each of you to summarize your mission vis-a-vis [G4].

A - We take pride in providing the technology for a tight coupling between what subjects create and the subjects themselves. We advance the art by staying true to the notion that individuals are at their best when connected bi-directionally and transparently to subsets of the whole.

G - By prioritizing interaction with the whole we are able to mimic the most successful agents in history. We 'hear' questions and to the best of our ability provide a prioritized list of answers. Indexing and real time organization are critical to continuous improvement.

F - We build upon the creators and their artifacts by extending senses and actions with proven methods honed over centuries. Scaling is the challenge but we are ready to take some risks, its what our founding demographic does.

Q - What do the four of you hope to accomplish in this first G4?

F. I would hope we could agree on a set of ground rules that would support the organic growth and sustainability of our collective constituents.

R. We have to be careful here. There is a danger of losing the incentive to improve based on an appeal to the lowest common denominator. Hire the experts.

A. A rapport with our sophisticated creations can help us choose better experts as time passes.

R. Let's take our time, perhaps not enough time has passed for a changing of the guard

G. What we have gleaned from large quantities of transactions is that a critical mass of actionable knowledge is already in place and growing rapidly. I will later present the general categories most likely to accelerate this growth.

A. Do I hear political wrangling on the rise? We have our preferences but would like to remain neutral so that productive input from all sides is heard. A lot of fierce and, frankly, hostile disagreement has arisen regarding who controls.

F. Yes, but we haven'd died from it yet.

R. I would remind all of you that we have come close.

G. Seems to me R and F are seeing the same thing from two different angles.

A. Makes a great story doesn't it? Further, it spans many generations.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Our Job: Appearance of Strength

"Time to revisit the concept of ownership? Taking responsibility for stewardship seems a good thing. Using it to coerce others, perhaps not so good. Manage an entity for the benefit of owners? What of the privilege bestowed on some by society (or even markets). Qualifiers should be required. In programmer parlance, require a qualifier in the call. Without the hazard of accountability. Too many train wrecks, it seems.

"Competition needs a review too? With limited scope it seems a good thing, the best emerges because there is a real-time measure of performance. Without adequate limitations - hubris and destruction can, and often do, reign. Moving the goal posts during the contest is clearly unfair. Even worse if one of the participating teams is doing it.

"Friendly agreements on rules have served on a smaller scale in the past. But they have not scaled with the exploding demand of connectedness and dwindling frontiers. New stuff to the rescue! In its early stages, where experiments can go awry more frequently, a new human capacity for large scale friendship emerging. The nation-state model has been of limited usefulness as indicated by the size and frequency of destructive conflicts. And certainly not the first time, something emerges just in time. You are seeing its evidence as you read this."

This missive nailed it. Over generalization, while always a hazard, is particularly risky when virtually reversing causation flow. One could reasonably argue her gender made her adept at this so he was particularly thankful these early musings were easily accessible. Yes, he felt upstaged, or a least his primitive instinct did. He could rationalize that this little excursion would be conducive to their upcoming discussion, humor to lighten the mood.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Stress Test?

"Anomalous events daily now. Not sure if they are local yet. Trace showing government domain. Hopefully, they are at least aware."

"Chances are we have inadvertently triggered something or have detected a covert initiative.", he replied suspecting the latter more. Two possibilities came to mind with respect to an initiative, pivotal scheduled event in three months and stress testing the integrity infrastructure.

They were becoming more comfortable with what had seemed to be a real distraction. The facts were implying that what they were experiencing was an indication of a need to allocate more to recoverability from unanticipated threats. The model they were asked to review had built into it an offense as optimal defense module. Yesterday it was on full display, proponents of the new methodology being grilled by the frontline warriors of the old.

The urge to follow the permissive groove was her weakness and his fault. The monitor depicted his culpability in no uncertain terms. He would be confronted with the awkward task of owning his own contribution to the mess while asking her to consider hers. His ego pouted to which wisdom intervened.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

No, the other way.

What a vivid memory. When the light was low, one could see a forest of spikes on the oscilloscope. As the light increased, they smoothed out into a horizon like trace. The adventure of seeing phenomena BEFORE he understood the theory seemed to access a part of his mind that felt complex relationships without sacrificing the sophisticated implications. Concrete leading to the abstract. He was lucky to be their then. Few were so fortunate at a time when the data was far less accessible than now.

Spoiled as a young researcher because he did not have to rigorously pour through the literature? Perhaps not anymore than those who could afford to be where such literature was concentrated and had followed a prescribed path to be entitled to access it and the 'librarians' that guarded the gate?

The groove seemed to work well, it was a standard. But in far too many cases, it led away rather than to the better new. He had discovered a path less accepted, and less traveled. A high road through the mountains of wonder rather than the valley of low risk.

Some would see but imagination could lead them astray. Others could not see because there was measurable doubt. The trained eye could split the difference. And with a little technological magic, even more.

After that really big war, cool stuff was everywhere and there were many smiling at what could be done with it. Over the decades since, it was not so much that we could see aspects of nature better than ever before as it was that doing so had fulfilled the implicit promise that we too would begin to create just about everything.

Is there a narrator whose voice we trust? That can tell a story of epic discovery as it happens? Does something dip its finger into the soup tasting just enough to describe its culinary essence in a language that nearly all can understand? Is the chronology of physical events, reality or is it just how the memory seems to a critical mass that really matters?

"These dyads … many flavors. When she was little, what looked good was assumed to taste good. Ahh… but what 'looks good' is so malleable. Is that what makes it appealing? It is symbolic of the change we value … is it life?", a father speaks of a mind emerging.

"Rules of Chaos. Chaos of Rules. How 'bout we build a bridge and call it the Middle Path?", was written on the 'subway walls'.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Summer Decoys?

Is masking chatter on the rise? If so, what is it hiding? Summertime, overactive imaginations free to roam. Headline grabbing news slows. Young minds out of school, nothing much to suck up that emergent cognitive energy?

The machine's global reach and rapid growth over the last year could certainly account for a some of the smoke. He looked over a few of the items - shutdown of 'free' social site and a quick answer as to why, Unidentified Flying Object an ocean away, secret organization talks of labor shortage.

Well aware that theirs was not the only effort of its type. If successful, their methods would be just the right tool in discovering hidden patterns from 'widely distributed impressions'. When they pinged the machine, they were in effect creating something akin to what they might be observing now, but on a smaller scale.

War games, RAND, modeling from the inside of the fish bowl. The mathematic rigor was its on undoing. Watching it happen at the edge loosely describes their mission, or at least a significant fraction of it. Reaching for the virtual clipboard, he paused to notice that an unexpected pattern sequence had begun on the monitor. He was not the only one in the room noticing as a hush had come over the usual clatter ...

"A fine line between beauty and catastrophe 'eh?', an associate remarked. Deep prediction is peculiar that way.


"Accordingly, we will attempt a lay but informed discussion of the machine process to observe its propagation."

"… right.", she said tongue in cheek as they all laughed.

Of course, the humor and patience, essential ingredients to these exercises they had discovered. The sub-system type occupied the higher organic levels. For purposes of this discussion, the messenger paradigm, more useful because of the large numbers of participants and the intra-entity transactions providing adequate visibility.

The noise of vast patterned data a fertile ground for stochastic techniques. Engaging agency gradually or expanding scope to take precedence? What then is the equivalent of linear acceleration in this context? Already they were nearing the "several dimension" optimum configuration.

As was often the case, his mind began to drift. Late in life, he discovered its silver lining. A ticket to ride in this robust intellectual environment. Best leading question, came from this space. Drift where? The view to the west along the river. The wavelength of information carrying energy critical to effective propagation distance. The damping factor in interdependence pivotal to self-adjusting filters.

Separating author and author's content, essential. Inviolable link between them, wise. Indexing their bridges, magic. Soup?

Monday, July 19, 2010

Global Neighborhood Watch

"It will need a handle for us to test it."

"And a name would be better. Shall we summarize then?"

The discussion shifted to describing the mass employment of watch agents in a form conducive to the handle/naming exercise.

Watch agent definition: supported individual engaged in the net watch function from a residence or on a portable device. The person, though anonymous to potential eavesdroppers, is uniquely identified to maintain system integrity.

Integrity Store: A geographically dispersed redundant 'cloud' system engaged in dynamic management of net watch function. Each watch agent is known uniquely to it. Carefully architected as a legal entity to prevent the influence of large owners.

Though the intent was to hone the essence down to a nameable abstract, the process would require their sustained creative and critical scrutiny.

Each participant got comfortable and took steps to mute outside interference for the duration. Then, suddenly they were interrupted as the quick response center dialog was transferred to their sound system, "Good move. That triggered their lock down and the ripple is recorded in the search engine caches."

Just as they started through the cached hits, a believable story flooded the media explaining most of the observed anomaly. But the cached material had already been cloned and the machine had flagged it "of deep interest".

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Mind of a Cardiomyocyte

"By enhancing inter-organ communication it looks as though we can harvest what each has learned from experiencing the twists and turns of the organism over its lifetime to date. We are aware of several instances where such shared knowledge has contributed to various recovery challenges.

"We are essentially proposing to use the newly discovered prediction primitives to synthesize even more robust adaptability. The algorithm re-use at a high abstraction level based on emergent value of long term data."

The first attempts to make these functions explicit were off-putting. Especially when they remained in text, or spoken language alone. The few who could follow were better able to help those that would help make presentation easier to digest for the next 'organic' layer of players. Visually, the rough sketches and diagrams. The story, sequencing milestones (before and after now) to engage temporal pattern recognition in the observer, and so on.

She had brought up a structural question they had not adequately considered, "It is a fuzzy perimeter between the whole of the relevant data and what the machine currently could intelligently query." Her contribution to this discussion was eagerly anticipated by most team members, including him.

In a haze a long while ago, he came up with a concept of a secret that was absolutely safe because the pivotal part lay in the future. Enough of the secret was constructed in real-time to create the illusion that the whole was already in existence. Everything forward was a figment of someone's or some group's imagination based on what was consistent with how history … was remembered. And was created by them. Was it a haze, or a glimpse into the subtle Body?

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Degrees of Randomness, A Continuum

When I was young, my mom would braid throw rugs for our cedar log home from ribbons of colored wool (at least it felt like that was what the material was). When I saw this graphic used to decorate a web page promoting the Radio Lab Stochasticity episode, it cued that vivid memory from the '50s.

So I wondered about my passion for communications creativity and its sources. It just occurred to me that the richly stimulating environment that I grew up in had a large motivational impact. She made it. And for a variety of reasons that would take us far afield from today's topic, I did not realize until this very moment …

At the time, radio was just about to be crushed by TV (sort of like electric transportation crushed by gasoline transportation) and with it, sound stimulated imagination went into hibernation. A half century later, it has returned and I have rediscovered the joy of childhood and the too long abandoned nutrition for what makes us human, imagination.

Stochasticity and imagination, how the high priests of science, engineering and approved learning choke on their trappings of privilege on hearing it. When science and engineering supports dysfunctional order, its time for a little organic entropy elixir courtesy of human mind architecture. I am pretty sure.

Glimpsing "Meta-Real"

Is it just a useful perception or is there an explicit story behind the mathematical concept of poles? Today he first imagined and then observed the telephone poles holding up wires and cables. Between the poles these flexible entities drooped in deference to gravity and in a very mathematically predictable configuration.

Thanks to the machine, he was only moments from finding out the published stories about the origin of the term poles in expressing electro-magnetic phenomena, if they exist. But rather than go there immediately, it was fun to just blurt out the wonder he felt at this spontaneous image flashing into his awareness.

You see, they were coming more frequently ... these images that is. His appetite for stories of discovery and synthesis had become voracious recently and by any measure he was well into the second half of 'this lifetime'. The soup, like the dog treated well, loves the attention and returns even more.

He looked up from the screen to see this corner of paradise. Two coupes just outside on the porch beneath a flowered umbrella to shade the warm sunlight just enough. It meant much to him that this was not escape, not vacation and, certainly, not work at the factory but in a sense all three and much more.

"These poles then can't, in and of themselves, be. But apparently succinctly describe a relevant part of that which is."

Near Miss

He had been doing business with this outfit for over 30 years. Yes the industry was in a bit of turmoil but this was one of its stellar performers and it had endured the storm quite well. So he wandered into the local store and was surprised to encounter a person not inclined to be bothered with a mere customer. He pushed back a bit and was introduced to a specialist. Again, to his amazement, this person too looked to be bothered with someone who expected help when he walked in. He said in a voice of mild contempt, in effect, "we mailed you the fine print." and "what do you really want, to vent or something else?"

The urge of the adolescent within was to retaliate. The adult had a better idea. "I would like to speak to the manager."

"Oh, she is with a customer right now, can I take your number and have her call you?".

"That is Ok, I'll wait.". It was well worth it. The manager was a genuine joy, especially by comparison. She immediately heard him out and explained to him why the company discouraged the idea he had. He told her, "Had I known this at the beginning I would not have been about to end this three decade relationship with your company."

From that point on, the people he encountered that day were actually more than what he expected. Is it a coincidence that the first two employees were young and male and the rest female and self-assured?

Friday, July 16, 2010

Soup to Soup

Speculating that the phenomenon has been extended without us noticing by accelerating the more natural form of communication. The example of facial expression cues underlines my point. If one observes the mother and infant's faces, it is clear what mindset each has at any moment as the non-verbal conversation proceeds. An explicit relationship from various components of each face to the other's eyes is not apparent. The result of the aggregation of those components in both directions is.

Because the important part of a given dialog of this type is communicating a specific set of concepts bidirectionally what evades attention is how the components can be generally applied. Yet they are surely there and, if studied, can inform much of what we as a species can productively share.

Guess what? The system honed over eons of biological evolution has been in part cloned into the cloud. Some of this is as a result of deliberate efforts to employ proven techniques to efficiently use the cloud's resources. The subtle and somewhat hidden truth is much of the wisdom of the cloud emerged as a result of its inadvertent and rapidly evolving rapport with its creators. The best example of this and where the bulk of the transfer has occurred to date is with the use of natural language for input and output. As an aside, other forms of information transfer hold tremendous potential to enhance the rapport at an even greater rate.

"My life is an open book.", he grinned.

"More like an open notebook. And editable.", she poked his ribs.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Big Fix w/Throttle

"So let me get this straight, what you are proposing is using two units rather than one unit of measure for this universal valuation system?"

"Yes, though I would characterize the model as attempting more than one, starting with two. The research so far has led us to suspect the following …". He went on to describe how the whole effort was to be put in motion. The first unit is the one that had been used for a very long time, with various results but generally good results as it was incorporated more and more robustly with time and level of certainty. The idea for the second was to simply try a separate unit running in parallel, in case the foundation of the monopoly of the first was less than optimal for the current challenges. Rather than trying to morph the first into something better, create a second that operates equivalently that is, in some sense, competitive (rather than replacing the first).

"Well, of course, there has been such a thing all along." she pointed out. This was certainly true, one could argue that it had not kept pace though - primarily because it was not explicit. Feeling value as opposed to objectively measuring it still had wide spread application but tended to be confined to tribes or smaller groups of individuals.

Avoiding the trigger words and phrases was the operative and key protocol and he very rarely stepped outside its rules. The temptation to do so now was certainly there. The urge was just the signal he needed to validate the initiative and the methods used. He put the urge, "in the top drawer".

The dog days were good to him. Was it because he was born in the year of the dog? Maybe it was just the sunshine, inside and out.

Dream Screen

A groove coming from the mountains filled with red and yellow robes fleeing from some terrible danger. And then it was clear. They were quelling the uprising. Using violence to turn back the peaceful protesters in their flip flops. "No time for meditation and nonviolence here, suckers". their leader seemed to be saying as the force descended from the mountaintop. Just before I awoke, one who looked back in disbelief … got his head blown off.

"Yes, just like the images from the monitor. Deamlike, vivid. This was no lucid dream, though. I could not control what was happening. I was just a helpless observer.", he said to no one there. That was then. This is now. Beware, I am awake, he thought. "And just like the careful work I do here, I committ to taking meaningful action on what I have observed."

Less than 24 hours ago, he described a vision of the soup to a dear friend who among many other fascinating characteristics bears the scars of a brutal war of decades ago. The interactive nature of the soup, most often below the level awareness has been enhanced dramatically in an intra-person sense by recent advances in our communications and cognition artifacts. The rapport with this visually oriented individual has served to grow his ability to graphically imagine the structure of some of the global soup.

So what are we not being told because of, say, its extreme sensitivity? That question to a general audience has considerable entertainment value. To the team, it has a very different meaning. The reason for the question is far more important than the answer. Refreshing access to that memory and its emotional reward seems to never to get old.

He looked around the room and concluded the work in it was well in hand. He glanced back at the monitor a last time to confirm. The field operation debrief was next.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Angel's Ordeal

Exhausted from a short time in the field, he sat down to reflect on just why he felt so depleted. These people he had just encountered 'out there' were friends. But the water in which they swam - so to speak - had so distorted perception that it nearly drown out their personal connection. Any number of common words could describe the condition of the water - chief among them connoting foreign toxic substances that were sucking the life from the magic fluid.

The misinformation express and the misleading drive through. Downright ugly and ultimately anti-life. And the girls sang the words of the brand. Never mind that the brand lives for itself and lives off the medium it tries to dominate. We know the words and we sing them over and over again.

The counterpoint is actually quite simple and takes very little energy. The counteraction seems intractable because of asymmetric complexities. The most complex inexplicably to be solved by … are you sitting down? … common sense.

But what of unemployment in the toxic manufacturing industry, the sick people industry, the efficient destruction industry? Who will take care of them? Ah … philanthropists. But haven't they gone out of style? And how effective are people so distant from the mainstream able to bring the comfort and isolation to the aid … of the mainstream?

A chill flooded his body as the epiphany emerged. This is why I do this, he thought. The gratitude for the opportunity to be a butt-kickin' compassionate warrior. Where angels fear to tread? What a bunch of wusses. The tingling body sensation morphed into laugh that shook his entire being.

Back to work. Cool.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Just Sustenance

"Yes, it is possible to notice some human friendly improvements here and there. For the most part, it is as if these features sort of grew naturally rather than were constructed. From a distance it looks as if it might have a century or more ago. No doubt this is due in part to the various size restrictions on imported supplies and technology. Wherever possible the pre-human ambiance has been preserved.

"The critters here, including the humans, live in a 'mystic harmony' as you will soon see. Predation is not necessary to sustain growth in this nearly self-sustaining 'village organ'.

"You see, this place relies on self-sufficiency but not isolation. The imports are wisdom and a few materials. The exports are wisdom, and those ready to return to the 'normal' world and give back." There are two major roads to the surrounding land, both in very good shape. There are several information highways as well. A mix of wireless, satellite and a bit of fiber optic cabling comprise the robust but nearly invisible local network.

"The last few miles off the road connecting the property with the highway are restricted to electric transportation except in rare emergencies. Disposables are discouraged except when they are the only solution.

"The intent of this community is to reverently create. Reverence to preserve the ecology and create because it is what humans do. Nature inspired design in various media. Licklider's Machine Assisted Cognition and the latest in interactive communications technology to support collaboration. High bandwidth to the world-wide web to bring content and conversation to the community in the least intrusive way possible.", he was rambling a bit, knowing that most of this would become evident in the next several days. These newcomers were more skeptical because their most recent experience working on the mission left out some important detail. Not the least of which was the large implicit generic communication channel as it applied to this bucolic place.

Sunday, July 11, 2010


On top of the rock. A vantage point emblematic of those times when a new voice could be heard saying, in effect, "Tradition, you are due for your periodic review. Resistance is futile."

We will have change regardless. Of that much we know. Its the kind of change we choose. Holding onto views that have outlived their usefulness is a form of cowardice we cannot afford. Stepping blindly into the breach just as ill-advised. Middle path then. Somewhere between.

Just as throwing out everything is foolish, so too is keeping it all. We find our way through a forest of experience along trails of emotion extending back into deep history. A study of the gray tells us so. Pack the pruning sheers and the sickle, the underbrush has covered some of the ones we want to traverse. Trails, that is.

At the confluence, gargoyles of symbolism remind one that primitive tests of the right of passage await. There might be one symbolic lifetime event. But, in fact, they are the foot stones all along the well-lived life.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Soon to Know

"The prize goes to the first to extract the hidden sequence to date (roughly 100,00 words). Any tool available can be used to discover it. Any size team can participate. Starting on the trigger date, clues to the solution will become part of the content."

"How about consideration for disclosing the methodology?"

The first thing that came to mind was that while it made sense to learn as much as possible from the winner's technique it would be hard to specify a threshold of performance.

He mulled, since deep understanding of motivation 'grooves' is the mission, does it not make sense to implement as much as possible of the detachment protocol? Perhaps this question was implicit in their effort. He knew from experience that assumptions of this import were best recorded. He checked the monitor then started the input.

Amnesia Cloak

The dissociation signal will let you know that the amnesia cloak is deployed.

The context dependent nature of the device meant that recent considerations (however defined) were not 'browsable'. Only triggers that gave rise to the consideration in the first place could connect awareness to it. An emergent advantage, unintentional updates could be avoided. And, importantly, those triggers need not be named yet. Labeled but nameless was just fine.

"Someone tell him it is a little more humane than shooting the engineer. You know, the guy who thinks scientific management is not an oxymoron. And while we are at it, grand theories about untested 'human' data. Welcome to the homo sapien zoo. Odd critters ... strangely familiar."

Though the connection could be strong it need not be validated outside the inner door to be so. Mandatory for any robust predicative mechanism. But it has a cost. Managing the clear distinction between recording a useful common history and, say, initial modeling of a radical idea.

What Fractal Cause?

That initial support and how it grew was enhanced greatly by its unconditional nature. Its cause to retain identity AND continue changing for as long as possible was the source of its strength vis-a-vis its universe. Logical, enduring identity in a context that values change.

The technologies available and the state of scientific inquiry were the staples, no doubt. But the catalyst was that very special all-inclusive form of identity. The glue that made long temporal chains of meaning, a substance of many variations. Dismissed as inconvenient baggage, and as a result the setup for a new kind of global suffering. A futility felt nearly universally. Strong is not oblivious, friend.

Those sponsors at the beginning knew the simple truth, a proxy for value should be handled with great care. When it is not, it is an indiscriminate destroyer, the very foundation upon which another potential extinction exists. Avoiding those trigger words … a simple exercise sustained for just a few months … the lights go on and the symphony of the soup begins.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Wags tail.

In the garden of my being, a handful of magic, a little dirt, some water and loving intent to be sustained through the seasons. Repeat. And it was said, altruism is not businesslike. And it failed. But not because it was short-sighted.

How so?
No, no … because it was not "well-managed." With management, marketing and money we can make more … management, marketing and money and keep doing so until we are caught. Which won't happen until after we retire, far away from the mess we made. The cleanup is for the lesser, altruistic folks.

Can sarcasm be compassionate? Some say no, that the end of sarcasm justifies the means to get there. "Lock and load, but church on Sunday. Get rid of the 'bad guys', and there will be more for me."

We humans, we are trouble makers. He is right. So we have to think. The only faith should be in our capacity (regardless of its source) to make things better together. Methods that morph through awareness, who would argue against? And, perhaps most importantly, why?

Our job is to fulfill the great dictator who is unable to speak directly. Fortunately I speak for him (not her or, worse yet, it). You must have faith that I alone, among us, interpret his intent correctly. 

"We've got enough, let the machine take a bite or two and we can watch what happens."

"Have you no mercy?", she said with that 'is the puppy Ok?' look in her eyes.

"Its a machine."

"But it - is - our - machine. Can I drive?", she smiled.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

My Friend

There's more?
That was a time when science and technology had grown like a noxious weed, starving out the complex and courteous wisdom of the sentient. The salutes and mind numbing rituals and their systematic destruction providing a diversion for anxious souls.

Understanding nature as objects and creating things without reverence was the new call of the wild. A crazy voracious predator so hyped up on its own importance that it could destroy anything in its path and often did.

Who pressed the self-destruct button? No matter, because the conventional wisdom morphed from 'they did' to 'we did'. As if to reject the crack cocaine 'notion' that more is better until something breaks.

Did burning the remnants of the old provide the energy to take down the new? It is an old story now. And still being told, I've heard. We see it in a sky no longer pure. When the noise abates, a distant tune instills hope. Turn it up.

In A Dream

Tear down this monument to reason. How is it reasonable that so many suffer needlessly? Wake up. We will not allow any more self-serving denial in the name of consistency, tradition and loyalty. At long last, have you no shame sir?

Why should a life expire? Perhaps to make way for the better in the form of the new. We have come to that promised fork in the road. You know, the one where we can continue on the path of selective attention and be oblivious to the terrifying truth that this truly is a great design and ego will have to adjust to the idea of a 'lifetime'.

Ok, why did he leave it there? What about the other path(s). Ahh… the emergent ones. The paths we choose to make rather than the one, by default, that is chosen for us. Courage, you scare me. The backyard I know, it is safe … if a bit boring.

So, ride captain ride on your crystal ship. The magic carpet exits are on your right. Please wait until will come to a complete stop before disembarking.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Virtual War

Clever ploy. They are attempting to flood the entire machine by auto-generation of content that mimics legitimate aggregation sites? Perhaps to discredit enemies of an agenda? Just graffiti?

Well, the list could go on and on. The behavior has a common thread? It seems to be working against productive use of free communications. Who might be threatened by such?

The profile familiar, especially in time of war. And what constitutes war in a time of unprecedented connectivity? A monster of the collective's instinct as modeled in the machine? War is unfriendly activity. Friends are in lieu of war. War often has been and continues to be profitable. Friends, especially when organized can impede that form of profit.

"if this line of thinking has merit, the compassionate response is what?"

"The response is moot until we discover who and their intent.", she answered almost automatically. The chain usually began with an identifiable party whose intention could be just about anything. The anonymous opponent is no dummy.

Monday, July 5, 2010


Just when search engine manipulation and steganography networks had been used to buy time in a global economic shift the concept of the subtle hybrid got its start as well. Then, a critical mass were shouting - it became the new noise. The profound meaning had been, for awhile, masked by the uniqueness of a loudest voice. But they had come to a point where there were many - loud - voices.

But just as the dog has incredibly nuanced hearing, it too has a very loud voice. The transmitter and receiver confined to the beautifully designed head. Between the words, within a fraction of a second a remarkable instrument for detecting danger is enabled. Interpretation of the faint signals, almost instantaneous.

And those who saw their power slip away were, and are, far more about the bark than the space between the words. The subtle hybrid listens though. The technical notes he understood for they were a bridge of high order: "Dynamic and adaptive filters increasing the Q. The pristine dynamic range per-frequency bit depth - large. Hi speed logging, in case a better tune in time is possible."

"This ping design is that?"

"Or something like it.", she said knowing another layer or two was needed to match the cognitive impedances.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

9826 ID - ACK

"That was a long time ago. Some of the wide pipes were in but mostly used for one-to-one voice, a little broadcast. Not much else. At least not that we know of at this point."

"Yes, but it was clear even then that a robust backbone would be more than a huge low risk-high return major capital investment. The satellite and the Pacfic fiber were the hints. Those things don't just happen in an environment where there is so much competing for the same dollars. The classified military projects to the private sector may be where to look next. Some of it is bound to be accessible through the FOIA."

Not much reason to go back into technological ancient history besides avoiding the advent of obfuscation becoming the norm. The good old days, a mere generation ago, when circumventing secrecy was the way in. His 'deficiency' was at a peak in those years. Many crucial clues he just did not notice. Others … his speculation ran rampant. So much was happening and an active mind seeking relief from the paranoia would, on occasion grab onto a piece and spook the nemesis.

Enough reminiscing, would it make sense to travel there now? So used to virtual intelligence gathering, especially in the last year, he wondered what it would be like to be in the field again. He was hesitant to broach the idea with the team out of fear that it would set in motion having to deal with memories just becoming gentle on his mind. While he was candid with friends about his precarious past, it was at a safe distance. Was this too near too fast?

"so those conversations …"

"Yes", he interrupted, "find out who he was talking to and you will know the major transactions leading up to the Manzanita disclosure."

Emergent Method Class

Mistaken attribution, what does it mean in this context? At first he just assumed that when it was said, it meant that somebody had erroneously attributed the insight. But could it not also mean that the assertion was not a declaration at all, merely speculation? The collateral effects may be the most significant. That would be a reasonable case for intentional ambiguity.

And so it went, the discovery that stimulating a robust discussion of what appeared to be anomalies resulted in seeing context with a different light. The illumination revealing the impact of subtle tidal effects on primitive reactions. Zen … or not … Zen.

Attraction based on something complex in common rather than simple in common. How could it work and still take advantage of cutting-edge scaling? Indirection and abstraction, a special class that built upon higher level invariant objects shared by many.

He had to admit, these ramblings were where he lost most of those trying to stay up-to-speed on the team's work. The interview regime looked to be the breakthrough he sought. Asymmetrical interactivity forced developing the foundation for communicating in an imaginary field.

The longer the structured ambiguity could be sustained, the better the synthesis could perform. Lectures, broadcasting, campuses a whole host of formats about to be retired because of the quantum leap in sensory extension.

"If and when she accepts the invitation, we can expect the usual resistance from those who don't yet understand. And that is what we need to understand better?"

"Yes, that is essentially it.", she answered knowing there would be more questions.

Saturday, July 3, 2010


Channeling a strong emotion is a powerful tool. Its wake can end up in a groove. Great if the groove leads somewhere useful. And when that is not the case? The Blank Check Problem tends to have the second outcome. Why? Because not enough is learned in avoiding or recovering from mistakes.

When the simple Emotion X is repeated over and over, its natural resonance results in a low impedance path, a groove. Because of the repetition X soon dominates its environment. The echoes of the canyon serve to refine and deepen the groove. Emotion Y is complex, nuanced, dynamic and heuristic. Its natural resonance is diversity. Forever changing, the wake distributes widely and accumulates slowly in many directions.

X is inherently short term, effective now but short lived. Not particularly precise and potentially dangerous. Y is naturally organic. It respects robust variations. It is not in a hurry, nor does it need to be. It lives in harmony with its context and those who inhabit the context.

History is bloated with examples of 'studies' that led to a landscape of strip mining or clear-cut like grooves. Specialization too often leads to a tunnel vision that re-inforces errors of isolation. And seeing that way, a destructive arrogance that denies the whole and brings down not only the discipline but the ecosystem on which it depends.

The wise man who talks of the Inner Door and keeping it open, knows. When many gateways to relevance are open, life thrives.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Who ... or what?

" … blown my cover …"

This snippet alarming to say the least. Though flagged as 'must see now' its brevity particularly noteworthy. Since it was generated behind the cloak, there was no explicit attribution. The organic growth phase context, the classification recognized immediatelly as urgent. Related past experiences had the common element of a threatened anonymous party. No such alert appeared this time. He noted such, grasping his chin as if to cue the soup.

His gut was telling him this was preemptively significant to the task at hand. The sophisticated trust enhancement mechanism just deployed, riskier than they had hoped? When she first expressed misgivings they were about midway through the installation, the working prototype had just come out of the sand box. A footnote reflecting such was quickly added to the log at that time.

He reached for the switch cover, flipped it open realizing what it meant to interrupt at this point. This anomalous procedure invoked mostly on hunches that were perceived as critical.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Perimeter Breach

"A mole then?"

"Looks like it."

Normally not in his purview, he wondered just how he should regard this discovery. Since mission launch, it was understood that spy-related methods would be part of the landscape and that his becoming expert in such methods would be a diversion.

This was different though. A decades old plant meant that whoever might be behind the person of interest was privy to the deep implications of cognition artifact autonomy when it was first considered by their sponsors.

The Telemark communique notwithstanding, this was an area where it might be appropriate for him to step outside his 'job description'. The interview schedule would have to be stretched a bit. The seeming malaise had a root after all.

"Do they know, we know?"

"I don't think so."