The Self Organisation of Information Systems, Imaginationland, and the nature of symbolic systems|Chapter 1|Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
On the self organization of information systems
The most fundamental question that religion can ask- Is God, or are the Gods subject to chaos? Chaos being the non recurrence of phenomena. Things are happening, but the same thing does not keep happening. In order for you to have planets and stars to then have people and cheeseburgers, you need a consistent structure of reality to scale over. Said another way. Is God, or are the gods a function of the universe Or is he/they the universe.
For the Greeks the answer was simple. Before anything, there was chaos. After chaos, there was the Gods. But these are not the Gods as as you know them. Their names lack capitalization due to their lack of complexity. It is not until the earth and the sky came together to produce time (Chronos) did gaia become Gaia to the Greeks. Time, as the iteration of the changes in space, fits nicely with the Greeks. for them, you need changes in space to get time. If everything is chaotic, and reality has no structure, how can anything happen for you to then have something to register its iteration?
Jung-The subconscious mind
The subconscious is the map of reality itself or in information theoretical terms, it is the combination of code and hardware which allows human beings to perceive reality.
From a biological perspective, nervous systems developed the ability to generate images with the advent of an infomration system (the brain). These images were advantageous as they helped guide the execution of movement.
Biological motivation for the fantastical
The biological motivation for the fantastical is the case against reality. It is evolutionarily less expensive to imagine, than to perceive. Imagination is used to fill in the gap in our perception. Humans see the part of the electromagnetic spectrum most conducive to their survival. Other animals, see a part conducive to theirs. No animal sees everything.
At the beginning, living things occupied their exact physical dimension in space (bacteria) through touch, then occupied more space with their other senses (animals), and then their existential dimension in space (humans). The level of that existentialism depends on the mind’s ability to conceptualize information. The ability to do so, is known as imagination.
Information systems as the mapping of chaos, with minimum energy expenditure. Humans think the way they do because it is the least energy-consuming way to move through a physical universe. The human brain needs less energy than a supercomputer to navigate the same domain.
In the language of computer science, your nervous system responds in
a binary. Did this human action satiate my felt unease? If yes, repeat, if not then avoid. The nervous system acts as a compressor of information in order to map onto the high-dimensional nature of reality. Compression is a term that originated in the computer science literature but belongs squarely in the discipline of evolutionary biology. Essentially, it is How many thoughts can I have per calorie. It is important to remember that the energy a gorilla uses to lift a car is equivalent to the energy you use to watch that Netflix show.
The goal of compression is to try to reduce a set of data points by understanding the general behavior of the system. For example, if I have the coordinates of all the planets in the orbit of the sun, I could then compress this information by producing the equation which predicts the motion of the object.
On the nature of symbolic systems
On the symbolic mapping of objects
Imagination, previously calibrated to local patterns of nature, can be externalized. Symbols increase the complexity of which the brain can interface with reality. Storing and creating outside of baseline levels. After a certain level of complexity, symbolic systems are necessary to organize society. They can be shared among people to homogenize social coordination.
Stanford, the only university with a symbolic system’s degree, defines a symbolic system as “the meaningful symbols that represent the world around us”. Unfortunately for them, they defined a symbol not a symbolic system. A symbolic system, are the rules which define the interaction between symbols. Symbols, being a subset of an image.
Therefore, a better definition of a symbolic system is the set of rules which dictate the behavior of variable images. Variable images being the codification of relevant phenomena. It is the externalization of imagination, given the biological motivation for the fantastical.
Language as a symbolic system
The mapping of variable images onto phonetics allows the common information communication to propagate over a geographic area. The rules governing the symbolic system of language is known as grammar.
Human beings navigate this high-dimensional nature, not by mapping their reality to a set of 1s and 0s, but with words and images. It is less computationally expensive to tell a human being “the sky is blue” than it is to run a machine learning algorithm that determines the sky is blue. Specifically, I only need 8 bytes of information (the amount of information needed to store the ASCII keyboard) to tell a human almost everything I need to know about his universe. However, to a computer, the sentence “the sky is blue” means nothing other than the 1s and 0s that it needs to retrieve to generate that sentence on the screen. Needless to say, it takes several hundred orders of magnitude to run a machine-learning algorithm to understand there is such a thing as a sky and that it is blue.
The gods are the symbolic mapping of different natural phenomena. Religion, fundamentally, is a reflection of the environment. The Mesototamians, flanked by the violently erupting Tigirs and the Euphrates, viewed their gods as capricious and vengeful. The Egyptians, with the gently flooding Nile, viewed themselves as a favored civilization.
Religion as a symbolic system
These gods and their stories represent ergodic habit formation. The habits that we use to survive across time. With the best habits, being propagated across time. Those with improper habits would perish with time.
Another term for the word God is the nature of reality is what Buda calls the law. Which is why, in Buddhism, there is no prayer. One cannot pray to the nature of reality. One obeys the nature of reality. The Greek epic of the Odyssey is what happens when one does not obey the nature of reality. Odysseus, the principle protagonist is lost at sea after disrespecting Poseidon. The morale of the story, is that if one is to go against the nature of reality, one is to pay the cost.
On the Death of God and the Disneyfication of myth
Religion, by this interpretation, is the codification of ergodic habit formation. Said another way, formalized religion is the process of symbolizing the acts which lead to the continuation of the species. When people lament the death of God, they are lamenting the death of ergodic habit formation. The death of the habits that got us this far. It is unclear if our new habits will take us anywhere.
In a market economy, however, what propagates are not the myths best suited for survivability, but those that are appealing to the most number of people. Storytelling, from a means of conveying information. to a means of generating liquid capital. leading to the loss of the stories. Thereby distorting the incentive, of society shared myths.
From an information theoretic perspective, humans are trying to solve an impossible problem. The information topography of reality is denser than what humans can understand. How do humans survive?
Some of the information, which was conducive to survival, is compressed within the nervous system. A nervous system augmented by an information system to help resolve this information in asymmetry. Humans look to others to determine their goals. Specifically, humans choose a role model. They then adopt the values of the model. Before then, competing with the idol for the objects of interest. The triangle nature of desire can be frustrated by scarcity. As each subsequent generation expects to attain the object of desire. These idols need not be flesh and blood. Girrard himself came up with the theory while reading a novel. Any Jungian archetype therefore bears a viable model for behavior.
A memetic theory of evolutionary biology
It is also worth considering the implications of a memetic theory of intelligence. The evolution of human intelligence followed a gradual path. There is an argument that humans evolved their intelligences as a function of sexual competition. Regardless of the nature of the competition. Humans evolved their intelligence as a function of natural selection.
Said another way, the development of human intelligence was a positive adaptation to evolutionary pressures. In the language of evolutionary calculus, Humans trade strength for brains. In terms of Artificial intelligence, the goal is compression. To produce the most amount of information processing with the least amount of associated energy. A trade that has turned out quite successfully (as of this writing). Hunter gathering humans went from a local species to a global one.
The more people over an area, the more time humans are able to attend to each other. The more time they compete with each other, the more human intelligence is prioritizing competition versus force, the more energy is associated with the development of intelligence. The greater the level of intelligence of a given population, the more intelligence is prioritised in the evolutionary calculus.
Mathematics as a symbolic system (technical)
The fundamental rule which undermines the symbolic system of mathematics, or the interaction between mathematical symbols are the laws of arithmetic and geometry.
A Number System
Numbers, fundamentally, are for counting things. Different types of numbers can count different things. We use complex numbers in fluid dynamics, because no matter how small the linear scaling of a natural number is, there are places on the number line that it can never get to.
The most fundamental type of numbers are known as the natural numbers. Fundamentally derived from the Hindu-Arabic Number system. Where pictorial patterns are used to label each succession of I.
A symbol is meant to represent a numeric quantity. Prior to this a three was III. If I wanted to count to ten I would need ten I (IIIIIIIIII). Each number system has its corresponding base: Decimal is of base ten, binary base two. Otherwise, we would need a new symbol for each successive digit of ones till forever. The idea of a number base allows you to extend the codification numbers within the same set of symbols.
The variable image revolution
Jean Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Simulation, is the intellectual inspiration for the Matrix franchise. The Matrix is a unique point of philosophy in its own respect. It Departs from the book in many ways. The first Matrix film, reflecting the versatility of filmmaking as an information medium with Hong Kong style kung fu. The other films were a poor imitation of the first.
Baudrillard postulates that people get their information not through actual reality but our shared imagination. This shared imagination, externalized through increasingly sophisticated information technologies. With increasingly salient variable images. The book starts off with a map of reality. A map so accurate that it’s confused for the real one. Anybody that’s followed Google Maps, down a bad road, knows the equivalents of this. It is this confusion between this externalized imagination and fundamental reality is the Matrix.
A symbol is fundamentally a subset of an image. It’s just not shared images, but shared symbols which help humans make sense of reality.
The Evolution of variable image technologies
Our ability to produce in addition to the complexity of these variable images, has increased through time. Eventually, we will learn how to automate the process of variable image creation through the printing press. And, be able to send these symbols without having to walk with the telegraph.
The inflection point in variable image technology is the postmodern era with the introduction of the television. The television can be thought of as a one way variable image machine. The shift from satellite to cable, represented a fundamental shift in the cost structure of the content wars. The means of transporting these valuable images shifted from broadcasting via electromagnetic waves via satellite to sending the very same information via fiber optic cables.
The personal computer is a two way variable image machine. Instead of just being able to receive the variable images, one can also create them. Two way variable image was mass commercialized in 1984 with Apple Macintosh. It gave people the greatest externalizing imagination machine in human history, overtaking pen and paper. The Macintosh allows users the use of visual representation associated with computer objects. The iPhone represents an explosion in the ubiquity of variable images. It allows, users to view and create variable images at an unprecedented rate.
Video games can be considered as dynamic images. In the sense, that the images change based on user action.
Prelapsaria, Paradise Lost and the Rise of Babylon| Chapter 2| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
Into the Wild
It was a memorable few months for John Krakauer. Author of Into the Wild and Into thin Air. Krakauer, always stepping into something it seems. Krakauer, at first not finding much success as a writer. He came onto the scene with, at first, one minor bestseller: Into the wild. That was before his next book about the biggest disaster in Everest history: Into thin air. It became a major bestseller, turning Into the Wild into a cultural phenomenon.
Almost disturbingly so, the book was later adapted into a movie by Sean Penn. A movie so compelling that a bunch of dorks would go visit the site of Chris McCandless’ death in an Alaskan bus. Their visit was In lieu of having their own experience with the wild which was the original point of Chris McCandless.
In the book, McCandless recently graduated from college. He became increasingly disinterested with the consumer society in 1992. McCandless would go on a journey which would eventually see him into the wild, not before tramping all over the continental United States and before making his way to Alaska.
There are few places on earth, as untouched by man as Alaska. Alaska, the 49th state in the union. Is in a lot of ways, the most disconnected part of America. Its location, admittedly, is awkward. Purchased from Russia, Alaska shares no border with any other American state. Although geographically closer than Hawaii. Alaska is still (as of writing) wild wild country. The internet connection in Alaska being so poor, DVDs are still in use.
“In coming to Alaska, McCandless yearned to wander uncharted country, to find a blank spot on the map. In 1992, however, there were no more blank spots on the map—not in Alaska, not anywhere. But Chris, with his idiosyncratic logic, came up with an elegant solution to this dilemma: He simply got rid of the map. In his own mind, if nowhere else, the terra would thereby remain incognita.”Into the Wild, John Kraukauer
But McCandles,s did end up going with a map. A book, to be more precise. A book about edible plants in the Alaskan wilderness. A point seemingly too esoteric for the movie. That portrays McCandless as dying following a dose of poisonous mushroom. McCandless died, however, eating poisonous seeds of an edible wild yam plant. Not an idiot after all.
There was no mention of not eating the poisonous seeds in a book about edible plants in the Alaskan wilderness. In fact, there was no mention of seeds at all. Exactly the original sin. Confusing the map of reality for reality itself, imagination from actuality. Chris McCandless, everyone else for that matter looked for a place in space to escape a place in mind.
Chris got to go into the wild. But the truth about the wild is that we left it for a reason. People have a false view of nature. Take the cordycep mushroom, for example, which grows by paralyzing bugs with an airborne fungus before growing inside it and then outside it by using the biomass of the bug as fuel. Most things do not want to be eaten. In fact, the term to distinguish this is known as hormesis.
Most of the people, alive today, would not survive in the wild. The fallacy of an abundant nature without thorne. Perhaps, the person with the greatest misunderstanding of nature in the history of the human race is Karl Marx.
When justifying his theory of everything known as Marxism. Marx told us that humans used to hunt communally. Not understanding, in hunter gatherer societies those, too weak to survive, are killed by their fellow tribesmen. So there’s that. Once the hunt is complete, the alpha gets the liver before the next gets the next most desirable part in turn. It was never each according to his means but each according to his end. Marxism, and its other derivative ideologies, are imbecilic from first principles.
Prometheus-The Greek Paradise Lost
To the Greeks, it’s not the discovery of one’s genitals that characterizes the fall from Eden but rather Prometheus giving man fire. The ability to leave the stone age for the age of bronze. The time of the Trojan War is better described as the First World War-the War of the Aegean.
On the other hand, it’s important to understand the Bible in an information theoretic context. The Creation Story of one civilization which was then adaptable to others. It seems that many cultures are pointing to the same societal inflection point: the moment that man stopped believing himself just an animal.
In terms of the order of production, fire is the first stage. An order of production in economics is something that is needed before something else can be made. In the case of metallurgy, fire is needed before metal can be smelted. Fire is the ability to establish an order of production, such as food, material. Cities, or consistent living locations can then be formed.
Babylon, the first great city of antiquity. Where the spoils of war show the decadence of the empire. Conquest of people was necessary for Babylon’s success. The Jews, one of the conquered people, considered Babylon the concentration of evil in the Old Testament. Years later, let me tell you, they have a point.
Away from the big city
Where a man cannot be free
Of all of the evils of this town
And of himself, and those around
Oh, and I guess that I just don’t know
Because when the smack begins to flow
I really don’t care anymore
About all the Jim-Jim’s in this town
And all the politicians makin’ crazy sounds
And everybody puttin’ everybody else downHeroine, The Velvet Underground
Since then, the fight against Babylon has been taken up by the rest of the Rastafarins but in a metaphorical sense. People, do not seem to understand that the problem is with the city itself.
Big city life
Me try fi get by
Pressure nah ease up no matter how hard me try
Big city life
Here my heart have no base
And right now Babylon de pon me caseBig City Life, Matafix
Paradise Lost-one of the greats works of English canon. One of the best works, of Western civilization. It’s, one of the best things everyone has ever written ever. After all Milton, had an audacious goal-a prequel to the Bible. And unlike George Lucas, he did not disappoint.
Paradise Lost starts out with the aftermath of an epic war between God and Satan. God wins but the devil is alive. Satan addresses his disciples.
All is not lost the unconquerable will. And the study of revenge, emotional hate, and courage, never to submit or yield, and what itself that is not to be overcome.
The mind itself, it's its own place at the mind its own place and itself can make a hell of heaven, heaven and hell.
I told you this book was good.
What is a book?
We’ve established in chapter one that people think in terms of stories. Stories are the most information dense manner of communication. In an information theoretic sense, this is Milton’s attempt to explain good and evil. So instead of calling his book Good and Evil, and addressing this dichotomy point by point, Milton wrote an epic poem. As narrative is the most dense information medium (as established in chapter one). Nietzsche realizes this eventually. That is why his magnum opus-thus spoke Zarathustra is an epic poem.
Our interpretation of what Nietzsche or Milton wrote is independent of what they meant to say . Therefore, the only common definition of reality, can only be what we agree on. The formalization of this process is the scientific method. The extent that something is part of a culture is directly correlated to the extent of how many people agree that it is real. But, in a constructivist sense, it is correlated to the extent that shared information is self similar. If a new writer of a comic book diverges from its readers, the readers will refuse the redefinition.
The Fall of Eden
After Adam stole the forbidden fruit because Eve told him so. Adam, when confronted by God, Adam told God: I am naked. People, interpreted this as the birth of consciousness. But in actuality, it’s the birth of self-consciousness. The model of self is now formed- the ego is born.
Ego, is the delineating boundary between people. The final parameter in the model of self. It represents the point, in information theoretic terms, when there is greater information communication within a person than between people. The ego is the renormalization group that formalizes consciousness.
The Eastern Paradise Lost
In information theoretical terms, meditation is the methodology of the science of awareness. A definition of attention is the information our mind focuses on.
The Secrets of the golden flower
Lao Tzu, the chief Taoist, while on his way to the Himalayas to die, was forced to write out some of his teachings by an overzealous border guard. Specifically, much of Taoist thought revolves around the notion of a person becoming a golden flower. The golden flower, a metaphor for enlightenment.
Lao Tzu recorded to the guard that one cannot write out the secrets to the golden flower. As the act of writing is antithetical to the golden flower. One cannot symbolise how to become the golden flower. In information theoretical terms, what Lao Tzu is trying to tell the border guard is that there is a difference between a map of reality and reality. Because to become the golden flower you need to recognize the difference between the map of reality and reality itself.
In information theoretic terms, the eastern paradise lost is the remedy and the result of the previous two paradises lost discussed earlier. In the sense that the Greek paradise lost represents fundamentally a change in the economic complexity of society. Forcing humans to compete on more of an intellectual battlefield. While the paradise lost of the old testament was the birth of self consciousness. The foundation myth of an Abrahamic society (Judaism) laments the renormalization in information communication, that is, where there is greater information communication between oneself than between people and reality.
The eastern remedy to this, is to meditate ‘mindfully’. It is to establish greater external communication. Meditation is when you pay more attention to reality than you do to yourself. You are not attending to our shared reality externalized through variable images (the map of reality), but to what is in front of you (actuality).
Anarchy State Mafia-an Information Theoretic view of State Formation| Chapter 3| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
On the Centralisation of disputation
This is the first day in the history of political science. As yesteryear’s poli-cy is nothing more than an amalgamation of terms. That is, if anyone has ever had the displeasure of having taken a politics 101 course. One is immediately confronted with the terms liberalism and realism. These terms are presented as a dichotomy to be contrasted.
This is a problem as liberalism and realism have nothing to do with each other. Realism is a theory regarding state formation. Defensive realists define a country as an area that can defend itself. Offensive realists define a country to be an area over which it can project force. While liberalism is a theory which dictates inter-state relations.
Now when it comes to intra-state relations the term conservative and liberal literally convey no information from a political science perspective. Conservatism and liberalism are positions with respect to time. As a conservative in 1991’s Russia, for example, would be in favor of communism while at the same time in America it would be pro-markets.
The notion of scale as such is completely devoid from any political science course (inter-state vs intra-state). The closest corollary comes from multi-fractal localism. The notion of multi-fractal localism can be given a methodological foundation when combined with the notion of a renormalization group.
A renormalization occurs when there is greater internal than external communication. One can then define a country as the scaling of these various renormalization groups.
The study of the relationship between these renormalization groups, is the study of political science. The best attempt to incorporate this idea of scale comes from the United States of America. The states are united. In the sense that each state is composed of individual governing bodies that delegate authority to the federal state through the interstate commerce clause (the 10th amendment).
Hegel’s notions of cultural and temporal relativism can be reinterpreted in an information theoretic/complex system:
Volksgeist– (put his definition) can be reinterpreted as shared information communication over space.
Zeitgeist-shared (put his definition) can be reinterpreted as information communication over time at a point in time.
Power Laws in political science (technical)
A volksgeist is formed when there is greater internal rather than external information communication (renormalization). This invokes the concept of a power law. As a power law occurs in nature when all local bonds are overridden in favor of a global bond.
The alpha of the power law is the size of the power law . It is inversely proportional to the disparateness of the nodes over an area. Disparateness is measured by shared information communication (shared attention). The level of disparateness can then be reinterpreted as a roughness quotient invoking the fractal geometry of nature.
In layman’s terms- societies which are less disparate are more homogenized. This model of state formation can be extended with the language of calculus.
The zeitgeist can be modeled as the first derivative of the volksgeist. How much is the information over an area changing at a specific point in time. A higher zeitgeist implies greater generational change. The second derivative of the volksgeist is also equal to the first derivative of the zeitgeist.How much does the zeitgeist change over time? It is equal to the intergenerational information differential.
Culture Wars-Why there are no hippies in the wild.
Furthermore, Hegelian terms can be given a methodological foundation when incorporated with Computationalism. Where one considers human intelligence to be a specific instance of intelligence as such. These nodes (information agents) can either cooperate (trade) or destroy (war).
When one node suggests a proposal to another node (a thesis) , if the other node proposes one back then it will be an antithesis. However, if they agree, it will become a synthesis.
If the nodes do not agree, the cycle continues as long as there is a society to decide over. Each node can either engage in this process with their neighbor or centralize this process in a political body. Nodes can either go to war physically or culturally. The technical definition of a cultural war is when two separate volksgeist amalgamate into one.
Hippies do not fight when they disagree with each other. They voluntarily dissociate: one group of dorks goes one way, the other group goes another way. This can only happen within a state, as disputation is centralized. Because in the wild you cannot choose peace and love. Evil finds you. After all, the Communist Chinese did invade Tibet.
It is important to understand that the process of civilisation is the process of increasing a volksgeist. The greater the civilization is, the greater the areas where external communication is greater than internal communication.
The Nation State is a recent invention of modern history. The birth occurred during the French Revolution (one of the great tragedies in human history- but that is for another chapter of the Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason).
However, it is entirely worth understanding that the ‘French’ did not share a common language until the advent of the Napoleonic Nation State. Germany provides us with the most recent example of smaller states forming a larger one. Resulting in what you would call World War 1 but I call it the First War of the Stupids or Europe’s civil war (discussed in another chapter of this book).
The mafia acts as a state over the market of illicit goods-gambling, drugs and prostitution. If one wants to get rid of organised crime, the best option remains to legalise the markets that Mafia operates over.
Religion provides us with a robust means of measuring information dispersion. There are more Muslims in Iraq than in Japan. Because Iraq is closer to Saudi Arabia (the birthplace of islam) than Japan is. Ancient Greece provides us with an interesting example of how information topography affects society. Greece, so insular from land that three hundred Spartans could hold the largest army at the time, the Persians, in the world.
This makes Greece, quite a unique civilization. Its religion, for example, is a lot more decentralized than their Asian counterparts. As anybody can bear witness to a sacrifice, not just centrally appointed religious figures.
Each Greek city, (local information cluster) emphasizes different aspects of the mythology. Athens was named after Athena. The Spartans were bigger fans of the huntress-Artemis. Each city, with its own unique form of government and values. The Athenians valued wisdom and democracy. The Spartans power and autocracy. Nonetheless, they consider themselves Greek. In the language of information theory, there was greater information communication between Greek cities than the rest of the world.
At the time, however, most cities weren’t part of a network of city states. Each city was a city on its own, with each city state boasting its own religion. In the language of information theory, there was greater information communication within a city than between cities.
Cyrus (the great)
The reason why they call him Cyrus the Great, is because Cyrus did not kill them (for once). He instead will patronize their God, assimilate them rather than disseminate them. Unlike the other great men of history, when people call Cyrus the great they actually mean it. He actually deserves that title for he introduced the power of markets to the world.
The fundamental difference between Persian and pre-Persian rule, is that war was completely a zero-sum game. A contest of wills, to be exact. In pre-modern times, the winner will be better off for having conquered as he receives the spoils of victory. The loser is obviously worse off having had the winner take his stuff. But fundamentally, this represents simply a shift of resources from one group to the other.
Under paganism, the zero-sum nature of reality is taken for granted. The Babylonians literally took your God after they conquered you. The name of the game was decimation, not assimilation. Nor, wealth creation by any respect. One’s benefit must come at the expense of another.
Cyrus, by contrast, just wanted people to stop “lying” as, for the persian, lying is the ultimate crime. He was not interested in stealing your God in glorious combat. In fact, he paid homage to the gods of the conquered people. Although war is the opposite of economic growth, it, however, established security. Security, established along trade routes allowed for the establishment of economic interconnectivity. Which in turns established Empires that populated the word.
Rome, Complexity and Christ| Chapter 4| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
Death to the Republic
By the time Rome came to exist, technology developed to the point where different peoples found themselves within the same sphere of influence. Rome fought a war with a local super power Carthage who, ironically, rose to prominence as traders, It was a colony of the great seafaring Phoenicians. It was by conquering Carthage, that Rome started to get a taste for empire. In nearly a lifetime, Rome rose from regional power to a hegemonic cluster with their destruction of Carthage.
At first Rome mobilized its military, as they would argue, “in self defense”. But as their founding fathers noted- war has a habit of undermining free societies.
The Roman military Industrial Complex
First, Rome’s army was constituted of conscripted landholders. This only allowed for little conquest. Once Rome hit a certain scale, the rules which define an agrarian democracy proved outdated for the world hegemon. The defense of the empire proved ill suited to the nature of the Roman armed forces with members having to be land owning farmers. However, as campaigns grew longer, many small farms grew into disrepair and agglomerated into larger estates, thereby robbing Rome of its military.
A Roman general, by the name of Gaius Marius, chose to solve the problem not by limiting the size of the estates of wealthy romans but by doing away with the rule requiring Romans to hold land altogether. Roman soldiers, upon successful conquest, would even be awarded land. The official birth of the Roman military industrial complex.
Now, the only limit as to how powerful one can be, is how much one can conquer. Roman generals could recruit non farming owning males. That allowed any one individual to accumulate more soldiers than the rest of Rome. This then caused friction with the rest of the Roman Senate. The threat of tyranny was taken seriously in Rome.
Roman Political Economy
The political economy of Rome reflects the birth of the military industrial complex. With large debt incurred by candidates on behalf of their political career. These political debts would then have to be repaid through wars of aggression once in office. These wars of aggression can then be used as a means of punishing political rivals (once out of office). Roman politicians, being excluded from prosecution whilst in office, forced them to try to remain in office for as long as possible. Thereby perverting the political process. In the case of Rome, Caesar’s refusal to be tried for war crimes led to a civil war (led by Kato the younger) that would destroy the republic.
Nature vs Nurture
The nature and nurture discussion is only considered a discussion because we all live with the same nurture. So the difference between us is, then, nature. The better word for nature is culture. The better word for nature is, genes. Fundamentally, nurture does dominate nature as different civilizations have risen and fallen at different points in time and space. If genes dominated, then we would see the same people dominating throughout the world. Nurture absolutely dominates nature. Who has smart and intelligent genes, illiterate genius or illiterate nongenius?
Roman culture is a unique culture in the history of the world. The fundamental collective unit of society within the Roman system was the family and the fundamental unit of that group is the individual. In Rome, people were known by their family name and had to act in accordance to the behavior associated with their names. Brutus murdered Caesar because, once upon a time, his ancestor was the one who killed Rome’s last tyrant. The Romans, like many previous people, had an ancestor room which enforced the actions that a member of a family had to accord to.
Stoicism-To despise fortune and the Gods
The competition between people was a competition between their gods. The head of NASA, Wernher von Braun, was a Nazi. The Nazi’s sent human to space. The Rastafarians, by contrast, we’re never going to send us anywhere. Why go anywhere? You’re already high. The disciples of Haile Selassie (Jah Rasta Farheigh) are also less likely to commit holocaust.
Stoicism, again, is fundamentally a pagan ideology. Roman mythology paralleled Greek mythology. The emphasis on fortune, however, is fundamentally a Roman concept. Fortune is your location in the possibility space. It is where you are out of all the places you could possibly be. To despise fortune is to despise variance or randomness. Because what fortune gives you, fortune can take away.
Deus Ex Machina
In information theoretic terms, the intervention by the gods is the explanation given to the unpredictable. If the unpredictable goes in your way, it is fortune. If not, it is misfortune.
Human action under Tyranny
Mises and Rothbard disagreed if people under tyranny can engage in human action. Rothbard, slightly misunderstood Mises theory of human action. Under tyranny, one cannot engage in true human action as they have to act in accordance fundamentally with the Emperor.
From an information theoretic perspective, Rome has a more independent processing system than their rivals. This is what made Rome such a unique society. They had remarkable individuals. While Carthage could only produce one Hannibal. Rome’s democratic system allowed for many concurrent great people. Thereby giving it a superior edge in information processing.
Anarcho-Capitalism: The market is a process, trust the process
Economics is the study of the allocation of scarce resources. This can be expanded as: economics is the study of the allocation of scarce means (inputs) towards desired ends (output). This allocation is done at a price. Economics is the study of the allocation of scarce means at a price towards desired ends. Ideally, one does not allocate resources once. Economics is the study of the allocation of scarce means (inputs) allocated at a price towards desired ends (outputs) through time.
Economics as a symbolic system
The fundamental point of the Misesian portion of the Austrian school of economic thought is that the symbolic systems used in economics are inappropriate. As these symbolic systems are those inherited from natural science and mathematics. These symbolic systems, when applied to economics, lead to faulty conclusions. As economics, the youngest of all the sciences, requires a different set of symbolic systems.
The Economics of Mises
The above point, made by Mises, was uttered prior to the days of the computer. Therefore, the language of information theory was limited. Information theory was not fully developed until after Mises. Despite this point, Mises was making a point about the nature of computation. Where one takes a computationalist view of the universe. Thereby characterizing human intelligence as a specific instance of intelligence as such. The language of artificial intelligence then becomes available to economics. Specifically, economics is the study of the estimation of a cost function.
This is in stark contrast to neoclassical economics which is completely devoid of any notion of computation. The closest thing to it comes from the notion of creative destruction. Theorized by the oft mischaracterized as Austrian but squarely Walrasian-Joseph Schumpeter. In which he acknowledges that it is the entrepreneur which takes the economy from one state of equilibrium to the other.
Feelings as an information system
Feelings give us a way to represent the outside world within our brain. Originally, when something felt good it was because it was good. The cognitive dimension was tied to the physical dimension. The difference between what is perceived as valuable in the cognitive realm and what is actually valuable was non-existent in hunter gatherer times because one evolved based on the other. Feelings allowe us to represent mentally the state of life within the organism and the state of life outside the organism in the cognitive realm. This is something which helps with evolution.
I felt hungry, so I tried eating some ice cream. That didn’t quite work because I felt sick. I then went to chipotle for some steak guac, and now I feel a lot better. Maybe that Ferari will fill the void in my life. You then get the Ferrari but are just as morabund as ever. But at least, you learnt. So this process of consciously trying to satiate unease is how society scales through time. This is the point of Demasio’s strange order of things. However, Mises wrote Human Action in 1949.
the Strange Order of Things
However it is worth understanding that humans do use reinforcement learning. But machine learning algorithms do not take advantage of the way nature creates intelligence. You are an information system, on top of a nervous system. It is worth understanding that the evolution of life is also the evolution of intelligence as such. In the sense that, at some point, life was not able to see, smell, hear or have access to any senses. Therefore, it is worth understanding that the first information system was not the neocortex but the nervous system. Feelings have evolved in order to give us a representation of the outside world. I see a tiger, I am then scared, so I then run.
The role of feelings in information processing, save for the recent work of neuro-scientist Antonio Damasio, is completely absent in modern literature. However, it does have a corollary surprisingly in the economics literature. Specifically, the work of the Austrian economist Ludwig Von Mises whose theory of human action is predicated on the notion that humans act because they want to satiate felt unease. This unease is generated by the nervous system and it is up to the information processing system to try to determine it.
intelligence stems from the human’s ability to interface accurately with reality. People, with skin in the game, do better without skin in the game not because of incentives (the point of the book Skin in the Game) but because of their feedback to reality. Feedback is then compressed by your nervousness into a binary. It is up to the information system to then process.
On the computational nature of capital and the pure time theory of interest
The satiation of felt unease, takes place through time. This information processing takes place through time. Time, an increasing the de emphasize topic in economics with theories of the trade cycle replaced by macro economics classes. Classes, on time preference, relegated to behavioral economics. To Mises, human action is a computation with regards to how long one can satiate felt unease for. It’s a matter of intelligence to be able to model felt unease over a time horizon. From an artificial intelligence perspective, the pure time theory of interest seeks to model the returns to time.
Theory of the firm
Following Mises’ work, it was Hayek who tried to change the symbolic system, used by economics, onto cybernetics. However, the difference between cybernetics and the rest of information theory comes down to theory vs practice. Cybernetics is applied information theory. The application of an information system onto robotics. Nonetheless, Hayek introduces the idea of the firm as an information processor.
Das Adam Smith Problem
The division of labor, from a complex system perspective, is the same as that of any organism. The specialization of information processing clusters at one scale, for greater complexity on the next. Firms are just a subset of the greater general class of system.
Catillion and Spatial Economics-What is a firm?
As an information processing system, the firm tries to symbolize transport and transmit different information at different scales through time. It is being able to produce more things with more materials and to be able to symbolize more things. Catilion’s contribution to economics is the idea of having a unit of land with an information system to process over.
A firm is a dedicated network of people (information processors) with the ability to transform resources into economic products which are valued by people over an economic field. The main growth parameter is the differential in cost between the configuration of bits in and out (cost of materials vs cost sold) over how many products are sold. Costs are dependent on how efficiently nature is transformed. The scale of the firm is dependent on the level of value generated and the network over which that value is being generated (common market). Both are a function of the level of propagation of physical and symbolizable information. As the cost of transmitting physical information, and transmitting information decreases the cost of coordinating human action at a distance (the formation of a human network across greater geographical bounds) decreases.
Jesus Christ-Enemy of Caesar
The greatest arsonist in the history of the world, enemy of Caesar-Jesus of Nazareth. The above point is worth repeating, as otherwise, the history of the world does not make sense. Jesus Christ is an enemy of Caesar Augustus emperor of Rome. He was the greatest terrorist Rome has ever seen (which is why they killed him).
Jesus, destroyed the old gods except one, the one of his native people, the Jewish God-Yahweh. It is important to understand that the contemporaries of Yahweh were Zeus, Odin, and the like. He’s the lone survivor and the founder of his own type of religion-the Abrahamic religions (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) which are considered as one. These religions are by far and away the most populous religion on earth. The reason why other pagan ideologies still exist is because the Abrahamic religions are limited by a eur-asian sphere of information communication.
All roads lead to Rome because the Romans built them. The difference between the Persian Empire, the Greek Empire and the Roman Empire has to do with Roman engineering. This is the same reason why Roman capitalism proved so successful. Internal Communications were so good that a common market was possible because there was an infrastructure to transport goods and services.
From a complex system perspective, unlike Paganism, Christianity is an expansive religion. In Paganism, the potential nodes do not affect growth. As pagan ideologies are concerned with conserving relevant information through shared myths. The more roads, the more connections between different people. The more connections to help grow an expansive religion. Chrstianity could only have arisen in a network Empire such as Rome where common travel safety was essential for preachers. In addition, the centralized political infrastructure of the roman empire contributed to the propagation of Christianity .
Christianity has to still be based on a sound ideology (Judaism) to propagate through time. However, christianity is also concerned with expanding itself. So what Nietszche laments as christian meekness stems from the fact that it needs to be as appealing to as many people as possible. What is the difference between the old and the new gods? Good and evil are their names. It is important to understand that it is the Christians are the ones who have lost Rome. The more Christian the Empire became, the more its borders shrank. The Christians were the hippies of antiquity.
Medieval Localism, Mathematics and the Printing Press|Chapter 5| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
The Dark Ages
The fall of Rome in Europe, must also be understood with the rise of Islam. Fundamentally, bifurcating what were once well-established Roman trade routes. The dark ages are dark in reference to the complexity of Rome.
The High Middle Ages-Medieval trade
The advent of medieval trade, fundamentally represents the re-establishment of roman trade routes amongst the fragments of the greater roman empire. The church acted as a substitute superstructure for the Roman state. Allowing for common identification across geography.
Despite China having shipping technologies hundreds of years ahead of Europe. It was not the Chinese who colonized the west indies, let alone the new world. China, being more centralized than Europe, would have one great fleet built by an emperor. Only, for it to be destroyed by the next. While in Europe, an Italian can sail for the king of Spain. This greater decentralization, allowing for more optionality.
Additionally, although there was a king of france. There were also the French nobility. Who, for the most part, had conflicting interests with the crown. As it was the nobility that would be called on to finance wars. Simultaneously, the monarchs needed to take the interests of the church into consideration as well. These competing interests would ensure that the each group could not overstep its boundaries.
The printing press-the automated symbol machine
Demand curves being downward sloping means that a decrease in the cost of symbol-creation leads to an increase in symbols. The printing press, allowed for the aautomation of symbol creation. As opposed to having everything handwritten by monks, the printing press, allowed for a decrease in the scale necessary to maintain a consistent information cluster.
The protestant reformation
Martin Luther, and other priests, were able to compete with the larger church apparatus via the distribution of pamphlets. These pamphlets would hold the personal views of the writer. These pamphlets would be read aloud to a crowd of people. As most people, during that time, lacked the ability to interpret alphabetical symbols.
These divergent views would eventually be crystallized by a schism in Christianity, in addition to, the bifurcation into Catholic and Orthodox Christians. This division was a reflection of the two information clusters of the time: the Byzantium and Roman Empire.
Eventually, Europe, previously all catholic, would house multiple forms of christinanity. Leading to an all out religious persecution and war.
Medieval Mathematics (technical)
The Symbolic system of Algebra
Algebra, introduces the notion of abstraction into mathematics. As a symbolic system, algebra allows for the representation of non-numerical symbols in mathematics. Thereby, increasing the set of mathematical objects which can be represented while being subject to the laws of arithmetic. An Algorithm is a precisely stated set of instructions that can be proven to work. The set of algorithms is increasing with an increasing set of symbols. Although not treated as sub fields of algebra, probability theory, calculus amongst other disciplines rely on algebra.
Algebraic geometry represents an application of a symbolic system to geometry. A codification of the points in space with a number system. In which, a point is defined by its coordinate on the xy-axis. A line, then becomes a pattern of points. Allowing, for the rules of geometry to make calculations.
Calculus represents a study between points in space. Space defined by Algebraic Geometry.
A symbolic system applied to geometry would be considered an abomination to the Greeks who specialize in non symbolic geometry. To the Greeks, differences in geometric forms can be quantified. But only in comparison to one another by the scaling of common proportions.
The Greek, aversion to irrational numbers. Stem from the fact that irrational numbers do not scale linearly. That’s what makes them-irrational. It then becomes impossible to compare. As each line differs in their growth pattern. This is because to the Greeks, numbers correspond to geometric patterns. The exactness of a cult of mathematical mumbo jumbo.
The Computer/Indexer Revolution-The Electromechanical symbol machine (technical)
Machine code as a symbolic system
Machine code represents a fundamental evolution in information technology. Where, a recent trend, started by Stepehen Wolfram, to explain the behavior of systems with the use of cellular automata. Whereby, the behavior of these automata are described with computer code not alphanumeric symbols.
Machine code is an algorithm expressed in a symbolic system that machines can understand. A program is an algorithm in a given programming language. Fundamentally, machine code represents the symbolic mapping of work. Specifically, a symbolic system which determines the behavior of an (electronic) circuit.
Machine code is an electronic mechanical symbolic system. The ability to mechanize algorithms (information transformation). As expressed by the first computer scientist Aida Lovelace. “The Analytical Engine weaves algebraical patterns just as the Jacquard loom weaves flowers and leaves.”
The most fundamental rule of computer science is that everything must be named incorrectly. The most fundamental operation that a computer executes is known as an “if statement”. So you told the computer if? If what?
The concept is much better described as an “if then statement”. If some condition is met, then do some operation. The “if then statement” is not merely a better name. It better captures the sequential ordering of protocols. In addition, the temporal nature of computation.
The Indexation revolution
How do computers encode information?
To that, I must make reference to another quantum physicist-(dork Jesus) Richard Feynman. Where, in his computer heuristics lecture, he tries to tell us perhaps the most profound point of the computer revolution-computers do not actually compute.
What do they do? Feynman likens them to an electronic filing system. Which explains what computers are-not what they do. To that, we must turn to the French who have a much better word for it-”Ordinateur”. From the Latin “Ordinat” which means order. Essentially what an “Ordinateur” does is to index. To file in a filing system, is to index something and to retrieve something according to an index. The proper term for a computer should be an indexer. Where the total memory by which you index over can just be thought of as a possibility space of 2n possibilities.
If I wanted to store 8 numbers I would need 23 different possibilities.
Now the quality of the video is unclear. Feynman is using colors instead of 1s and 0s.
This may seem trivial to those with little knowledge of machine learning. But programming can be thought of as, it ultimately is, a mapping onto 1s and 0s. Now machine learning can be thought of as auto-indexation.
The history of man made intelligence has scaled in direct correspondence with that of the computing industry in general. Machine learning algorithms were around before the commercialisation of computing in the mid 60s. But their efficacy, at the time, was limited not by theory but by the nature of computer hardware.
However, if you listen to the supposed ‘experts’ in the field of artificial intelligence, they will tell you that all we need is more “compute” to get better AI. Which is a statement that conveys no information. As what they are essentially saying, the ability for a computer to auto-index is increasing in the number of points to index over. Now the current state of machine learning can be summarized as follows: Machines are better at auto-indexing when they have a human-made index to map onto, supervised learning, rather than when they are given data over which to auto-index over-unsupervised learning.
Most of what people call a computer comes down to applied combinatorics. What we call increased compute/indexation is just more possible combinations over which to store variables. Whose size is equal to 2^n.Which can also be thought of as the (n) number of 2 digits combinations that an indexer can index over.
Probability theory fundamentally represents a symbolic mapping of a possibility space. Additionally, what is oft understood is the current field of AI has yet to progress past the point that mathematics reached in medieval Europe. With most probability theory being based on mastering the games of chance. Which is exactly my point, these are but mere games. In reinforcement learning, what the computer essentially does is try a series of possible strategies. Based on if these strategies prove successful or not, the computers classify them as either having worked (1), did not work (0) or ended in a draw (1/2). The power of reinforcement learning is dependent on the ability to accurately reward the agent in question. In the case of actual warfare (not chess) one can lose every single battle and still win the war. Therefore when trying to accurately determine weights when it comes to the real world one encounters a dimensionality problem.
Modernity and The Industrial Revolution-The Biggest Thing That Man Has Ever done| Chapter 6| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
The European Miracle-Man’s Domestication of Work
I'm just a lonesome traveler, The Great Historical Bum Highly educated from history I have come I built the Rock of Ages, 'twas in the Year of One And that was about the biggest thing that man had ever done-The Biggest Thing Man has ever done, Woody Guthrie
The industrial revolution is the greatest inflection point in human history since Prometheus gave man fire. Because both of these inflection points stem from the same source, man’s ability to produce energy outside of his body. Fire, one of the great chaotic forces of the universe, is quite frankly unmanageable. All we can do with it is make sure it doesn’t destroy everything. What we can do, however, is heat water. Water vapor then spins a turbine creating energy. Now we can sidestep fire altogether, and just have water spin the turbine for you.
Now river you can ramble where the sun sets in the sea, But while you're rambling river you can do some work for me-Roll On Columbia, Woody Guthrie
The industrial revolution is fundamentally the ability to access work over no dimension of freedom (the waterwheel). The railway, one dimension of freedom. The automobile/steamboat, two dimensions. Aeroplane three dimensions of freedom.
The American Dream in information theoretical terms, is about the ability to voluntarily disassociate across space. The ability for nodes to decentralize their computation across independent geographical areas. Prior to the early eighteen hundreds, if you didn’t like your neighbor, you could always just move. Because why else would people live in Ohio? It is also not a coincidence that when people ran out of space, the American Civil War started.
Only after the American Dream died can we now recognise modern day America. Because the national identity that most Americans have is a very recent phenomenon aided by the two “War of the Worlds”. This new national ‘American’ identity, measured in information theoretical terms, is simply that there are now more communications between states than within states as railways decreased the cost of information communication.
To the American southern agrarians, the automobile represents the death of America. The automobile accelerated the changes caused by the railway. As the automobile represents a decentralization of the railway. Giving individuals, not groups, the ability to move between spaces. The automobile destroyed the local neighborhood as things are less clustered by walking distance.
The Lindy Effect
The Lindy effect refers to a technology’s ability to be robust towards time. Not the most advanced technology, per se but the most durable. Books are more Lindy than computers as books are robust to solar flares and EMP bombs. Horses are even more Lindy but ohh so not modern. Toyota’s Land Cruiser, The greatest car ever produced, is made less Lindy by a touchscreen. The touchscreen is harder to fix than dials or buttons. The most dated part of the car is the screen and underlying computer. Bugatti, cognisant of this, minimizes the number of screens available in their cars.
A collapse of space-time (technical)
On communicating physical information (its):
The scale of the firm, is dependent on level of value generated. In addition to, the network over which that value is being generated (economic field). Both are a function of the level of propagation for physical and symbolizable information. As the costs per unit mass over a period of time become equivilized across geographic distances. The more there is returns to scale, as the advantage of having local monopolies is reduced. Resulting, in winner take all effect. In addition to, greater specialisation via Riccardo’s theories of comparitive advantage.
The ability to transmit physical information (Objects) is dependent on the ability to transport mass over a specific distance and over a specific time (speed). The relevant information stressors to this process are mass and time. Therefore, the self organizing outcome of the system: The quantity of the lowest unit masses and the lowest geographic distance (ability to transport over time), will create the connections, which self organize first. Therefore, the relevant technology is the ability to transport unit masses over different geography.
The determinant of this technology is the ability to reduce the friction reality with wheels/roads/boats/railways/airplanes. The ability to overcome inertia and maintain motion of a certain unit mass, is dependent on the ability of humans to create and control force through wind/animals/human body/spontaneous combustion engine/waterwheel/steam-engine/nuclear reactor.
What was the Fountainhead? A renormalization of the topography of the information landscape
The Fountainhead, as in the fountainhead of a pen, is an exploration of the archetypes of the Media Industry. In addition to an exploration of the fundamental renormalization from local to national media. It is a function of a proliferation in information technologies, told through the lens of architecture. It is specifically the media coverage of Erudite Howard Roark.
The newspaper represents an increase in shared imagination externalization. Imaginationland, literally increasing in size and density. Resulting in the great mass organization of mass culture that Aldus Huxley’s Brave New World characterized.
The printing press (revisited)
a medieval phenomenon, the printing press would be mass adopted in the modern era. Most people in medieval Europe were illiterate forcing panels to be read in groups. However, by the modern era, national education has made symbolic manipulation ubiquitous in western society.
Typewriter-The variable Symbol machine
The typewriter represents a decrease in the cost of symbol creation. Instead of being forced to write longhand. Symbolic creation is standardized and mechanized.
The telegraph-The variable symbol transmitter (technical)
The telegraph represents, the fundamental inflection points in the information typography. Information, increasingly less local, has been renormalized to the national level with the advent of the telegraph. The original www was not the World Wide Web. But the World Wide Wire. Information broadcasted en-mass via the telegraph.
Mathematically speaking, the World Wide Web would be characterized as a scale free network. A place in space with no marginal cost of communication. With any website, exactly one click away. In the world wide wire, the marginal cost of communication is negligible within a city. Information, however, was still clustered at the city scale. But easily shared between cities, by telegraph wire. The telegraph exited the uSA from its localist Roots.
The newspaper system
The business model of attention products, determine the nature of the product itself. Subscription services caused a dialectic (shared information communication) between publisher and reader. If the attention product does not meet the preferences of the readers they unsubscribe. This makes subscription based services more ideologically committed.
A polarized America
The earlier newspapers were dominated by religious groups. Religion, being the main political issue for that time. Made for a more polarized America (what do you want to say, not clear). Most early Americans were puritans, fleeing religious persecution from Catholic Europe. So it is of no surprise that once Catholics made their way to the new country, they would be treated in kind. Newspapers were used as a way of educating fellow religious followers to the most holy way to vote.
Earlier newspapers were a service provided by political parties, religious groups, political groups, and/or some other sponsor. Later newspapers became businesses. Where, newspapers were sold for a loss and the profits were made up with advertising. Advertising based businesses appeal to the lowest common human denominator. Their success is determined by how much attention they can draw. As only the most salient point gets propagated. Giving the reader a skewed view of reality.
Ayn Rand-Student of Mises
Rand is fundamentally a student of Mises. Rand, a noted curmudgeon, was grinning ear to ear. Mises acknowledged her work to be the literary translation to some of his economics. We’ve already established that the Austrian school of economic thought represents an evolution in the symbolic systems used in economics. The previous set of symbolic systems inherited from the natural sciences was inappropriate for praxeology.
Roark is exactly the Misesian entrepreneur theorized. The principal dialectic in economics is between the entrepreneur and isomorphic competition. The first mover, as compared to the second. The pattern is innovation by the first. Only to be copied, by the second. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates. The only thing that a member of the herd can do is copy because you will use it to change things. Howard Roark’s existence is an offensive one. Offensive, because to anyone inside the herd, there’s nothing more offensive than someone outside of it. The archetypical representation of the herd’s principle member- Peter Keating.
Rand is not a subtle author. In fact, she often gets accused of being too much on the nose with the characters. What these critics neglect, is that at some point, people do become caricatures of themselves. For I have met my fair share of Ellsorth Toohey. Ellsworth, the principal antagonists. The archetypal representation of the ambitious newspaper columnist. Rand also captures the inherent conflict between the writer and editor newspaper-Gale Wynand. Wynand, the Mark Zuckerberg of the modern era (except not a dork). In this sense, Wynand controls the principal information medium of his time-the newswire and newspaper.
The Poster-A variable image
The successor to the information technology of the painting, was the poster. Prior to the cinema, the variable image medium was the poster. The effect of which cannot be underestimated in a world devoid of color. Uncle Sam was born.
Variable Sound Machine-Radio
The birth of radio is squarely a modern phenomenon. Radio represents the fundamental difference between the information technology of the First and Second World War. Radio, represents the ability to encode audio and electromagnetic waves and broadcast it over an area. Radio, said to be the most personal of the information portals was the main propaganda tool of the third Reich. Europe’s, limited geography allowed for greater radio. In the USA, radio was pioneered by farmers in the countryside with chicken wire. But through the centralization efforts of the FTC, American radio would also follow great centralization. Early radio was known for generic content and large centralized audiences.
Mike and the Mad Dog
Prior to the introduction of Mike and the mad dog, there was no sports talk radio. the first show literally starts out with
“not too many times we get something new on something that has been around for so long”
Not only was Mike and the mad dog, satisfying preferences, but they also birthed the genre. With every sports show in history, a blatant derivative of two dudes. One is high strung and emotional, the other rugged and monotone.
Variable Image Machine-Cinema
Cinema, invented by the French, was the first true moving variable image technology. The successor to the flipbook. Despite its french origin, and the fact France still produces some of the best films in the world, it was America’s Hollywood that took film to the next level.
Walt Disney’s Snow White
In terms of the development of film as a medium. The cinema of yesteryear, such as Casablanca and Citizen Kane, prove to be less Lindy, and look more dated Compared to the animation of the time. Walt Disney’s Snow White was, a phenomenon. It was the birth of a unique American art form. In its own respect, Snow White was a triumph of technology. So robust to time, that children essentially decades later are still captivated by it. Live action film, on the other hand, took another half century to develop.
The Death of Comics
Comics are squarely a modern phenomenon. As in the modern era, there was nothing that looked like comics. The vibrancy of the colors was the bleeding edge technology of the time. In addition to being the inspiration for the color pallette of Star Wars. Prior to the rise of cyberspace, comics provided the cheapest and most versatile form of imagination externalization. Making comics was a great method of judging the archetypes and stories which are valued by our society. After all, this happened before the ubiquitous use of television. However, the archetypal representations would follow towards film and television.
Had France not blown itself up, perhaps it would have been the leader in the genre. France comics are a lot more expensive, have a hardcover, and are considered another art form-bande desinee. In Japan, the medium known as manga, is far more respected than Comics are in America.
A Captain America
Comic books provide the best example of America’s shifting zeitgeist and volksgeist. As each of the eras of comic book history (golden, silver, bronze, dark, modern) can themselves be considered as shifts in the zeitgeist. With the inception of a literal captain America. The uSA exited from its local to national roots.
The Golden Age of Comics
The Golden Age of Comics occurred in the modern era. Although the popularity of comics started with superheroes. After World War Two, comics had matured into its own medium with the sale of other genres, surpassing those of heroes. Within America’s golden age of comics, closing with Fredric Wertham’s Seduction of the innocent. A movement that destroyed comic books as a medium.
The Comics Code Authority
Comics ceased to be mass culture as they were no longer able to represent culture. Despite an increase in competition from other information technologies such as television and increasingly sophisticated firms, the lower cost structure of comics, despite being in the postmodern era, have made comics the more salient medium.
The Comics Code Authority is the industry’s attempt at self regulation, prompted by the external pressure of the aforementioned Wertham. Whose, most salacious point, is usually misinterpreted by the media. That Batman and Robin, are living the wish dreams of homosexuals, not that they are homosexuals. An accusation more salacious at the time, than of writing.
The Silver Age of comics-For the love of the Batman
One needs look no further than the evolution of the aforementioned Batman through the eras, Batman seemingly to oscillate from cataclysmically campy with the Silver Age feeling zebra Batman. Batman dresses zebra in zebra camo to a deleteriously distressing mark with modern Batman comics involving the Joker ripping off his own face only to sew it back on again. The reason for the bipolarity is that artists no longer had access to the dark side of Batman during the Comics Code Authority.
Given the fact that we refer to people who work well together as “Batman and Robin.” It seems stupid, nay blasphemous to ask if Batman should have a sidekick. It’s kind of like asking if hamburgers need fries, if movies need sound, and if Lebron needs two All-Stars to win a title.
But to better understand why this is a valid question, we need to first know the history of Batman and Robin and how they evolved over time. Because Batman, and by extension, Robin will always be a reflection of the zeitgeist, with each era vying for the soul of the Bat.
In the case of Batman when he first appeared (solo I may add) in Detective Comics issue #27, he was very different from the Batman we know now. Firstly, in the Golden Age, Batman kills *nerds gasp at a distance*. He used guns and he protected the rich from the poor. This wouldn’t last for long as comic book publishers felt that Batman needed a younger sidekick to be more appealing to kids. The logic went that prepubescent children would not be able to see themselves as the physical manifestation of vengeance. But they could see themselves as the kid in the booty shorts. This type of reasoning was not unique to Batman . At the time everyone from Captain America (Bucky) to the Human Torch (Toro) were adjacent to small children. It was, by many accounts, a much simpler time.
The Great Inward Shift
This was before the great inward shift that comic books went through. Where comic book publishers spent less time worrying about the kids market, and spent more time worrying about the nerds. This shift represents comics’ fundamental retreat from mass culture.
Introducing Dick Grayson, the first Robin, in Detective Comics #37 allowed for changes in the tone of the character. Because Batman actually had someone to talk to, writers could make his stories lighter, use fewer guns and more puns. Dick was in every way shape and form the embodiment of the ideal American youth of the time. And as writers started to make Batman, dare I say it, happier, they lost track of who the character was meant to be. The Silver Age Batman was very weird, to say the least but very much ahead of his time with his fashion sense:
This trend of making Batman less gritty and campier continued through the 60’s with the Batman TV show on ABC. This is where Batman had his own dance move, the very aptly named Batusi.
And how did he manage to do so?
Well by sending Robin off to college. But this time, instead of Batman protecting the rich from the poor, he would now protect the poor from the rich.
Again it is worth repeating that Batman, more so than almost anyone in fiction, represents the zeitgeist of the era of the comic book. Back in the 30’s America was trying to escape from the great depression. So where better to escape than in the life of a playboy millionaire? By the time 1970 rolled around, people were more cynical. So who better to protect the people without power from the people with power. Then the person with the most power?
The Dark Ages
It will not be until Frank Miller’s Dark Knight, that the genre accepted the audience for comics as “aged”. By the time the aptly named Dark Ages of comics rolled around, a new Robin, Jason Todd was introduced. Although at the beginning he was literally a carbon copy of Dick Grayson (the first Robin) with his parents also being circus acrobats murdered by mobsters. After the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths, his story was redrawn. Gone were the days of tights and tightropes, Jason was now a boy from the streets who Batman caught trying to steal the Batmobile’s tires in the same alley, on the anniversary of his parent’s murder.
Which begs the question what size rims does the Batman have?
Introducing this new Robin is very important to the comics because up until now Batman was the character in flux, with the boy wonder being a constant. But the introduction of Jason kickstarted the cycle where Robins could oscillate from light to dark from good to well, bad.
With his new backstory, Robin started to become more and more insufferable to the point where most Batman fans began to hate the little dick (pun intended). After a couple issues of being comics versions of King Joffrey, the editors of Batman had the Joker kidnap the boy wonder and let fans decide if the new Robin lives or dies via a dedicated hotline. After the 10,614 calls were counted, the people decided: Robin dies at dawn. Jason Todd would be ruthlessly, mercilessly and relentlessly beaten into oblivion. Most cheered. The pretender was dead.
Not everyone was happy with the way this turned out in the comic book world. Author Frank Miller described it as “the most cynical thing DC has ever done. [Where] an actual toll-free number where fans can call in to put an ax to a little boy’s head.”
Needless to say, these were in fact the dark ages.
The Rise of the State and the Death of God| Chapter 7| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
The French Revolution
The French Revolution is not a revolution against the Crown. The French Revolution is a revolution against the church.
Under l’ancient regime, it was the church that legitimized the Emperor. The modern nation state, is defined by the separation between church and state. The Pope does not need to bless the president. These separation of powers is a means of weakening the church. As the clergy no longer has sway over political matters. Giving the state ability to grow as an independent body.
It was Louis the 14th , who undid l’ancient regime by bringing local elites to one place in space-Versailles. Prior to this centralization, local elites were in contention with the crown. As it was their resources that would be taxed in favor of the king. However, when brought in such close proximity with the crown, local elites began competing between themselves for the king’s favor. The French Revolution was a revolution against the death of medieval localism. It was Europe’s greatest advantage over the rest of the world.
Napoleon the Great
Napoleon the great because he is the only one not to die during the French Revolution. Afterall, “on noms de la bastille, Le jour du gloire est arrivée”.
The nation state-as an information processor
Why the leviathan leans left
Government is an expansive system because it has the ability to expand itself. The government can always increase its role in society because it controls the rules of the society. The ability of the state to propagate itself en masse is dependent on the nature of information technologies.
Mass culture is the homogenisation across space. The greater the homogenisation, the greater the culture. In this light, train and telegraph can be viewed as the main tools to achieve homogenisation
Fractional Reserve Banking
The change the nature of the information communication technology of money allows for the establishment of fractional reserve banking and the modern central bank. People would keep their gold in a warehouse that would issue receipts. These receipts then become banknotes. These banknotes would then become paper currency.
The Difference between Napoleonic and modern armies is scale. Fractional reserve banking, with the establishment of a central bank, allowed the state, through borrowing, to fund destruction at an unprecedented scale.
The First European Civil War: The war of Stupidity
What was naturally a successor to the war of Alsace and Lorraine, a regional war fought amongst regional powers-France and Germany, resulted in a world war. This war eventually destroyed the most complex civilization in the world since Rome- L’Europe durant la Belle Époque. A conflict, catalyzed by a dispute amongst two later defunct empires-the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empire, over the independence of a third people, the Balkans. The war later expanded with the introduction of another power-Anglestan. Over the territorial integrity of a state, Belgium. Belgium lies exactly between its two biggest continental competitors-France and Germany.
For all of this to then be resolved by the introduction of yet another power, the USA. This fresh power allowed the winning party to institute a disastrous ‘peace’ agreement-the treaty of Versailles. That treaty did nothing other than to guarantee another war of the stupids-the second war of the stupids. A war which resulted in the death of European imperialism as such. Everyone who got involved thought not only that they were going to win but also they would win quickly. Europe’s civil war represented fundamental miscalculations by the state from an information processing system.
All Anglestan had to do to win the first world war was, literally and precisely, exactly-nothing. The territorial integrity of Belgium came at the expense of a third of the wealth of the empire. Prior to the war, Anglestan, did not even had an army big enough to send for slaughter . Their Expeditionary Forces, of one hundred thousand veteran troops, was so small that the Kaizer joked that he would have them arrested by the German police.
Instead of of imposing a naval blockade of Germany, that would eventually cause Germany to surrender, Anglestan, changed the nature of its armed forces. Just so that they can be stupid. Anglestan was under constant pressure by the French to help them reinforce the western front. Seemingly forgetting that Anglestan shares no border with Germany and that it has the best Navy in the world. Fortress Britain, so impenetrable that decades later Germany with continental supremacy could not invade.
The fall of Czarist Russia is the greatest geopolitical disaster since the fall of Constantinople to Turkic invaders. Russia has been a paper tiger since Peter the Great. The history of Russia bifurcates with that of Europe since the Mongol invasion of the world. Unlike Western Europe, Russia was not saved from the wrath of the Khan.
The Wrath Khan
Ghenghis Khan, conquered the world by exploiting the internal conflicts of his enemies. As a result, the political body of the Mongol’s was overly centralized. After sending scouts,s all the way past Vienna. General Ogadai had to turn around due to a death in the family. Saving much of christendom. The only reason that the Mongols did not ransack Paris-fortune.
Mongolian hegemony is a neglected point in European history. So much so, that Russia literally chose not to record this period in its history. This is a decision the Russians would later regret during the Japanese Russia war on the eve of World War One. The Japanese Imperial Navy, post Meiji Restoration, absolutely annihilating the Russian Pacific Fleet. Before, then
, smashing the Russian Baltic Fleet that traveled halfway across the world just to die. Showing, that even on the eve of war, it is clear that Russia failed the transition from medieval to modern society
The Mongol invasion led to the complete destruction of Russia’s nobility class. Effectively opting Russia out of European localism. Unlike the rest of Europe, Russia is characterized by incessant centralization over a large geographic area and population. Whenever Russia finds itself at a rough tech parity with Europe. Its greater population puts it at an advantage. Though the opposite is also true. This overt centralization, however, makes Russia a less technologically innovative society. The history of Russia is a history of centralizers. Unlike the rest of Europe, Russia can only be changed from the top down. One great centraliser, centralizes. Only for that very same centralization to be the reason for it to be left behind, once again. Not understanding, the system itself is the problem .
This can be seen by Russia as difference in Europe’s two civil wars. In that sense that, Russia lost to a smaller German army in the First World War. Only to ransack Berlin in the second. This is because much of the technologies of the early industrialization Revolution had become more standardized and accessible. Allowing these technologies, to be adopted in an easier fashion. Additionally, the uSA was supplying arms to Czarist Russia. Stalin, lamented that his war was a war of American weapons and Russian men. Hilariously, the worker’s party is bad at making things.
The death of Caesar
The principal point of Europe’s civil war for Russia, was its inability to renormalize to the national scale. Unlike the rest of Europe, which boast the first examples of the nation state as such. Like Louis the 16th before him, the Czar ceased to be able to feed his people. The most fundamental failure of a state. However, Czarist Russia inability to secure the food supply of its population while waging total war eventually collapsed the regime. It is important to understand Russia, later the Soviet Union, was the first communist state. Something must have fundamentally gone wrong for that to happen.
On the eve of its eventual collapse, Czarist Russia launched an illogical offensive against Germany. Motivated by their allies, they did not want the monopoly on stupidity. Thereby knocking itself out of the war. Had Russia not overreached, we never would have had a communist state.
The Formerly united States of America (uSA)
Teddy the cowboy Rosevelt
Teddy, dubbed “the cowboy ” Rosevelt by JP Morgan. The cowboy’s reign as a president amounts to the second worst presidency in American history. The cowboy fundamentally changed the nature of the American presidency with an unprecedented explosion of the use of executive actions. The cowboy was responsible for much of America’s exit from isolationism with the colonization of Hawaii, Puerto Rico and the Philippines. These colonies were the impetus for America’s involvement in the second world war.
Parallel to his expansionist foreign policy, there was a great narrative that portrayed the cowboy as a great trust buster. Seemingly ignoring that all the busted trusts, through the Sherman Act, were those of the house Rockefeller. the Sherman Act was later used by House Rockefeller contra the House Morgan.
It was Teddy the cowboy who would later run on a progressive ticket. Thereby splitting the Republican vote and paving the way for the first intellectual, yet idiot, President (IYI) PhD, Dr. Woodrow Wilson.
Woodrow Wilson PhD-The first Intellectual, yet Idiot, (IYI) President
Woodrow Wilson PhD (in Political Science), was the third worst president in the history of the United States of America. If the cowboy changed the nature of the American presidency, Wilson changed the nature of America forever. Injecting it from a policy of neutrality, not isolation rephrase. There was no real reason why the uSA should join Europe’s civil war. A war between imperial powers. The uSA shares no border with any of the World War actors. uSA lies on another continent and is a democracy, not an imperial state.
However, despite this, the uSA instructed Germany that if any American ship was to be sunk by a German submarine, that would constitute, a formal declaration of war. The Kaizer would report that this was the maritime equivalent of going to war. If an American gets killed walking through the Battle of the Some incomplete sentence.
Woodrow Wilson PhD would lament the need for more Americans to die in battle so that he gains legitimacy on the bargaining table. The lives of, his citizens were literally bargaining chips. I would understand this from a Caesar or a Stalin. but this is from the leader of a democracy. These were his voters that he was sending to die.
The disaster of Versailles
There is a false revisionist history that compares Germany’s treaty with the collapse of Imperial Russia with the Treaty of Versailles, aka, the Treaty of the stupids. Because the treaty with Russia was so harsh the Imperial Russian state devolved into socialism, an unparalleled act in human history. Of course it was going to be damaging. Western powers did not want a socialist state, nobody wanted a socialist state.
Germany, by contrast, is a historical upstart in a multipolar power world. therefore instead of having to contend with the new power. The old powers tried to cripple a rising Germany at the negotiating table. due to the threat of a fresh United States. Germany could have just continued the war if it did not like the peace terms.
The US entered into World War One in 1917. This allowed the allies to propose an unparalleled and also untenable peace treaty known as the Treaty of Versailles. At the end of the Napoleonic Wars, however, the treaty that France received was far more generous than the Treaty of Versailles. For it was assumed that France, long Europe’s hegemon, would forever be a player on the European stage.
The Birth of a Germany:
Germany is the most recent out of all of the large European states. As Germany, with the aid of centralizer Bismarck, achieved national renormalization late. Prussia’s army, ever in search of a state, found one at last. The difference between the French and the German State is-competence.
The Great (avoidable) Depression
Not only were most of the economists blindsided by the depression, their remedies did not work. In addition, they had no idea when the depression was going to end either. In fact, their remedies were a testament to the power of Hermes as a god. Hermes being the God of commerce. In the midst of the Great Depression in history, the US was burning crops in order to create global scarcity to drive up prices for American farmers. The literal equivalent of trying to drain the sea with a bucket. The road to insanity is gradual then sudden.
President Harding, the last great president of the United States, who was laissez fair not on philosophical grounds, but on laziness grounds. After all, maybe if George W Bush had a better poker game, there wouldn’t have been a second Iraq invasion.
The actions of the Hoover government exasperated the crisis. Hoover wanted to have more intervention in its route through the recession through the years following the First World War of the stupids: 1918 and 1919. He was then ridiculed by the laissez faire President Hart. By the time Hoover had nudged Harding into action, the recession resolved itself as a miracle, seemingly an economic recovery without government.
Hardening went on to die during his presidency. In his memoirs, a secret service member theorizes that it was the wife, hiding about being in the middle of a mafia scandal. You can do anything but bore and embarrass a woman. She allegedly poisoned him. The greatest possible generation of the Office of presidency is that incompetent has not been better than average. It’s been the best in a century.
The Hoover Administration
In order to make the pound attractive, the dollar was kept artificially at a lower rate. The USA and Anglestan have the same credit rating. The country with a higher rating will absorb excess liquidity. The Hoover government did not increase its artificially low interest rates enough to offset the market repricing.
Unlike the English neoclassical school of economics which was surprise by the great depression. The Austrian school of economic thoughthe predicted it, gave a theory to explain the depression through Austrian business cycle theory and then gave the remedy for fixing the crisis.
More fundamentally, the Great Depression is a natural consequence of the inability to accept the loss of wealth caused by the First War of the stupids. The depression was exacerbated by the very same policies which were designed to solve it. Prior to the establishment of fiat currency, the world’s currencies were linked to a gold standard. The wanton trust people have for paper currency is a reasonably new phenomena in history,
The attraction of gold as a medium stems from the fact nobody could “print it”. For a foreign exchange perspective, gold made a lot of sense. As the value of any given currency is just its weight in gold. The more gold in the coin, the more gold in the economy.
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York
Great Britain, back when Britain was great, was the commerce capital of the world. This gave Britain the largest gold reserve in the world and consequently the world’s most valuable currency. However, Britain lost a third of its wealth ‘winning’ the First War of the stupids. The Bank of England, (BOE), pretended that there was no capital loss to start with when Europe was sending itself back to the Stone Age.
Central bankers would coordinate purchases of Gold over time to ensure the integrity of the pound, effectively going against the market. The reason for the abrupt accent of American Imperial hegemony stems from the fact that America had its civil war fifty years prior. That allowed the uSA, to use the dollar to rebuild the world at the expense of the pound.
Fundamentally, a cheap dollar is what makes the world go round. Instead of accepting the fact that the dollar should be the most valuable currency in the world. The federal reserve has continued a regime of artificially suppressing the value of the dollar.
Europe’s second civil war: The war of good and evil
Evil, in an information theoretic terms, refers to the advent of mutual exclusivity. The devil (the symbolic mapping of evil) is the difference between us-as it is the most different that gets scapegoated. The reason why the Palestian’s call the Israelis evil and vice versa is that they mutually have an exclusive claim to the same land. Evil is necessary for the scaling of complex systems-what is known as the lucifer principle as competition (mutual exclusivity) begets greater complexity.
Good in an information theoretic sense refers to value creation. What makes capitalism a tyranny of heaven, is that capitalism is based on the mutual coincidence of wants. The more valuable you are, the more people will want you.
The reason why the second world war is the war of good and evil is that Hirahito’s Japan and Nazi Germany had to die. These societies, if you are not an Aryan or Japanese, did not want you in them. Now it is important to understand that good always triumphs over evil. We know this from Paradise lost, God (good) wins the epic battle over Satan (evil). But, God does not kill Satan, and after losing his battle with God (so goes Paradise lost) the devil makes his way into the mind of man.
The fundamental question of this period in history is to what extent was Nazi Germany an aberration or part of the historical trend of the Germany. Germany, being one of the most recent European states, had to renormalize the national level.
Unlike the other great revolutions in history, the Nazis were elected into office. Granted the Nazis lacked a majority in parliament. However, that’s because nobody had a majority in parliament. Having said that, the Nazis did lose seats before seizing complete power. Once in power, the Nazis in all likelihood burnt down the German Chancellory in order to seize the state. The Nazis, at the end of the day, were the only political parties to control to wrest control from the army. The former state, within a state, was unwilling to march against the Third Reich. As the loyalty of any given unit cannot be guaranteed because they were Nazis. Heil Hitler was a standard telephone greeting after all.
The Nazis made the most of the neglected German pride once they seized the state. It was clear that the Nazis captured Germany’s imagination. Some aspects of Nazism was the reestablishment of standard Imperial German uniform and decorum. Other aspects involved the greater centralization of the German state. The autobahns, Germany’s interstate highway system, was created by the Nazis.
Public Relations and the Ministry of Propaganda.
The term propaganda is only recently negatively connotated. As at the time , there was literally a minister of propaganda. Propaganda was just a term for the information given by the government. It was best utilized by the British during the First War of the stupids. It kept the English fighting with high morale.
Hegel’s concept of freedom is: are you free if you’re exactly like everyone else? In information theoretical terms, are you an independent agent if you’re a self similar.
There were two revolutions in post Soviet Russia. First the Bolshevik revolution, then Lenin’s revolution. After Lenin’s death, Stalin was best positioned to take over the Communist Party. Within Stalin’s rule there was two periods : His pre and post despot stages. His despotry resulted in the greatest level of centralization in Russian history. Not understanding that it is this excessive centralization that limited the USSR.
It was Stalin who was tasked with modernizing Russia. This was difficult, considering, communist’s as their consequences of their proper improper understanding of economic though; do not struggle with the with the production of goods at the lower end of the production cycle such as consumer raw materials. Tehy struggle withconsumer goods at the higher end of the production cycle.
The price system coordinates the flow of information between the various stages of production. Without prices, some information has to be centrally managed. Stalin would lament Russia’s lack of a white collar management to coordinate such information. As a result Russia, a communist state, had to purchase the capital needed from the capitalist on the world market.
The Germans chose to fight a two front war. As opposed to either focusing on North Africa or operation Barbarossa. Additionally, had Hirohito’s Japan joined its ideological ally (Nazi Germany) Japan decided to attack a country, where the best case scenario was to win a war of attrition.
Japan had nothing to do with Hitler’s war effort. The Nazis could have just done nothing. Instead, chose to declare war on the uSA.
After the annihilation by the French Republic. Britain was left to fight the Germans alone. It made more sense prior to the Battle of Britain to make peace with the Nazis. As the Nazi in all likelihood wanted to make peace and we’re making overt attempts at the British to do so. Britain’s well documented rebuff is to be commended.
Atlas did not Shrug
Mister Charlie Lindbergh, he flew to old Berlin Got 'im a big Iron Cross, and he flew right back again To Washington, Washington Hitler wrote to Lindy, said "Do your very worst" Lindy started an outfit that he called America First In Washington, Washington Lindy said to Hoover: "We'll do the same as FranceMake a deal with Hitler, and then we'll get our chance In Washington, Washington" They say "America First, " but they mean "America Next!" In Washington, Washington"-Lindbergh, Woody Gurthie
Atlas did not shrug off a world war. He was dragged into it when the Japanese bombed of Pearl Harbour. Unfortunately, it does not seem like he ever went back to sleep.
European federal renormalization
The European Union was created to solve a question posed by Henry Kissinger. If I want to speak to Europe, Who do I call? European federal renormalization was achieved after the conclusion of Europe’s Civil War. What started out as a common metal market, would eventually culminate in a supranational political body. The idea of a federal European state is a rational one. Japan and California, would be the second most populous European states. There are billions of people in China and India.
European success stemmed from its technological advances over other regions of the world. As these technological advances became increasingly commoditized. Europes’ small population of six hundred million and small geography made it hard for it, as individual states to contend with what can be described as sub-continents. In the case of the uSA, China and India.
The uSA, is a federation whereby, as stated by the tenth amendment of the constitution, the state delegates power to the federal government, save for interstate commerce. Unlike the political structure of the uSA, the European Union adopted a more centralized approach which was the official death of medieval localism. Most decisions came from an unelected committee of representatives.
Overbanked Europe-A common monetary union
However, the problem with this version of the European federal state is that its definition of Europe is too expansive. There are too many unrelated countries in Europe. The European Union tried to establish a common monetary territory amongst economically diverse countries. German cars are subsidized as Greece is part of the same monetary union. In a free float economy, the Deutsche Mark would be more valuable than the euro. Causing German, automobiles to be more expensive.
The European banking system reflects the strain of European integration. The most national champions are now forced to compete with other national champions in a common market. This makes consolidation in the European banking industry a necessity.
Butter vs olive oil Europe
When we talk about Europe, we are really talking about the land east of the Volga, north of the Mediterranean and south of the Baltic. There’s also a delineation between butter and olive oil eating Europe. Fundamentally, the difference between Northern and Mediterranean Europe. France is the only country between the two seas that define Europe
. There is quite a difference between Lombardy and the Cote d’Azur. European regions which share waters have greater similarity.
The Northern sea essentially encapsulates the era influenced by the Vikings. Brexit, is given a new interpretation under this definition. Anglestan is closer to mainland Europe than their fellow northern sea countries. Who, like Anglestan, did not adopt the euro as a national currency. So, a European Union amongst northern European countries would also make more sense. There is a greater participation for the European Union amongst Alpine than northern Europe.
Western Europe is completely dominated by the Alps with a country on each Alpine side, (France, Germany, Austria, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, etc). A European Union amongst countries of the Alps would make more sense.
After all, it makes it much easier to transport elephants to the Alps now than in the age of Hannibal. So it makes more sense that once information communication increased, there would be a renormalization to a greater scale. As these countries share a common boundary which is increasingly becoming less of a boundary as a result of better roads and tunnels. This made information communication greater between the states.
False Renormalization: a line in the sand
This point cannot be repeated enough: Europe’s two civil wars are what lead to the death of European imperialism. The uSA, in contrast, lost its empire resolving the colonial disputes of Europe. America’s interest in the Middle East should extend insofar as the flow of oil flows out of the Middle East. It has transitioned from a main oil exporter to an oil importer, due to a decrease in internal supply since the Second World War. The Americans inherited the British interest in the Middle East.
While Europe is struggling for its federal renormalization, It’s formal colonies were still struggling with their national renormalization. The Sykes–Picot Agreement agreement, essentially defines the Middle East. As the remnants of the Ottoman Empire, previously the remnants of the Persian Empire, these middle eastern countries, were devised not based on local interests but on the interest of European colonialists.
Lebanon is not a country
Lebanon’s confessional democracy was not derived from collective bargaining between Lebanon’s various religious sects, the way in which Europeans constitutional democracy was formed. The borders of the Lebanese state were not fought for by ‘Lebanese’ people. Lebanon, as a country, was created by France; to create a Christian majority country in the region with the president of Lebanon being a Maronite Christian. The Prime Minister, a Sunni Muslim. The Speaker of the House a Shia Muslim.
They have done a disastrous job to say the least. Territorial sovereignty is the basic definition of a country Lebanon’s government has never been able to secure its borders. The Syrian, Palestinian and Israeli forces ran rampant in the region. Not only could the government not deliver on internal security, It seems, it was unable to do anything else. During the #youstink protests, wherethe government got into a dispute with the cleaning distributor, Lebanon landfills start to pile up. However, the greatest disaster in the history of la République Libanaise is Electricité du Liban (EDL), the national electricity provider.
Electricité du Liban
EDL not only does not provide acceptable coverage, with scheduled rolling blackouts being the norm, it requires massive subsidies from the Lebanese state in order to operate . This subsidy does not go towards long term energy solutions, but rather to buy fuel as EDL generates most of its electricity via fossil fuels. As a result of the state’s inability to meet the needs of his people and network of private generator contractors emerged to fill the void.
The supposed Party of God, Hezbollah, is an Iranian backed militia that was formed after the Israelie invasion of Lebanon in 1982. Hezbollah is currently responsible for maintaining the borders of the Lebanese nation state. Iran, a country of 80 million people, is able to fund this. Lebanon is the size of a small Iranian province. With much of Iran’s support concentrating on the country’s Shia population. The philanthropic efforts of Hezbollah are more expansive than the Lebanese state. Said another way, the welfare-warfare state of Hezbollah is more developed than the actual Lebanese state. Hezbollah, the shadow state within the state, is also a political party.
The fundamental quagmire, that is Lebanon- how does a Lebanese nation state develop with such a powerful shadow state? However, the logical fallacy regarding this line of reasoning is that Hezbollah rose to power due to a failure of state. So, once the state stops failing the Hezbollah question can be better addressed.
Iran-The Shia Revival
Both Iran and Turkey, are civilizations unto themselves. These civilizations were not colonized by Western powers. As a result, they have both successfully renormalized to the national scale. Both of these proud people have only recently concluded their industrial revolutions. The principal difference between these civilizations is their relationships with the West.
What was once America’s greatest ally in the region, is now its greatest enemy. This is considered one of the greatest examples of blowback in intelligence history. Not to be outdone by themselves, The CIA supplied arms to Saddam Hussein in his invasion of Iran. The Iran-Iraq War, the bloodiest war of the second half of the 20th century.
After ending the war, Saddam with an American-funded army invaded Kuwait. Officially, reaching blowback to the second degree by this point. As a response, the uSA conducted operation Desert Storm, absolutely annihilating Iraqi conventional forces. The subsequent removal of Saddam, increased Iran’s geopolitical influence over Iraq an otherwise Shia majority country.With the uSA, vying with Iran for influence over Iraq. The difference, however, is proximity. Iran neighbors Iraq, while the uSA needs to project an expensive sphere of influence.
The question then becomes- how valuable is Iraq to the American taxpayer as compared to those of Iran? Iraq being the natural point of territorial expansion of a strong Persian state. Iran and Iraq also share religious solidarity, in otherwise minority set of Islam. The purported Shia revival has done much to upset the traditional Sunni powers outside of American influence in the region.
The Television-A Post Modern Society| Chapter 8| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
The official postmodern year-1964.
The official post modern technology-the television.
The modern era is defined by its static black and white pictures. The postmodern era is defined by the colored moving images. The peak year of the postmodern era is 1969. For those serious about life, we got the moon landing and the first two-way variable image machine-the computer. The hippies got Woodstock.
Post modernity, is a natural byproduct of an information technology which exploded after World War Two with the commercialization of the variable image machine known as the television. This change in information technology took time to be reflected in the Geist. It can be defined, in information theoretical terms, as the moment in time that people have attended more towards their shared imagination, through these information technologies, than the reality they live in.
The delineating boundary between the postmodern and the modern state is the nature of information technologies. Where the centralized nature of information technologies of the modern state (cinema, radio, the newspaper) led to the ability to centralize attention. The Postmodern state made this task all the more difficult. The Russian state had to jam radio free Europe, making mass brainwashing all the more challenging. All the information technologies of the earliest 20th century would become cheaper such that it became accessible to the individual. The Polaroid, along with the handheld camera, made image capture more ubiquitous.
Post modern Philosophical thought
Postmodernism is a point in history, not a political philosophy. Because what does Baudrillard (the intellectual inspiration of the Matrix movie) have to do with Foucault (the philosophical equivalent of a mosquito). I put Foucault into a category of people which I call the post truth philosophers. Is there such a thing as absolute truth? The original father of this movement is Hegel. His theories of culture and temporal relativism, long since, have been stretched past their breaking point (recently mathematized as of this book-chapter 3).
Are there things which transcend time and culture? The answer is yes: Mathematics. Is mathematics invented or discovered? Its symbolic mapping is invented the rest discovered. Every culture has a language and this language changes. Have you tried listening to Shakespeare of late? However, modern mathematics is the Hindu Arabic numbers system, Greek geometry, Arabic algebra, French algebraic geometry, English/ German calculus, etc. All cultures share the same mathematics that gets incremented through time. If a thought gets abandoned, it is because the culture that produced it has died.
What sort of free will is left whenis comes to tabulation and arithmatic
twice two makes four without my free will
As if free will meant thatFyodor Dostoevsky, Notes from the underground
Television-The Variable Image Machine
Television, could first represent images in black and white, without sound. In future, the telivion would be able to represent these images. With increasing precision, over a larger screen with incresingly salient colour and vibrant sound. The cost of creating these mages would decrease. Giving us a greater variety to chose from.
The inflection point, in variable image technology being the postmodern era with the introduction of the television. The latest result of the variable image revolution. The television can be thought as a one way variable image machine.
The Rise of postmodern space-Disneyland
Disneyland is the first place-in-space of imagination. It is the first brick and mortar manifestation of man’s imagination. Disneyland is squarely a postmodern phenomenon. With the concept premiering first as a TV show, not an amusement park.
Betty Croquette, Disney’s first television show, reveals that the Americans were longing for the days of yore; The days of the open prairie, and the wild frontier. As a result, they made an amusement park out of it.
1964 was also the year the first televised World Series. Also known as the death of baseball. Baseball is best experienced in person, or on radio. American football is the postmodern sport. In the sense that people would rather watch the NFL on TV than in person.
The Yankees, prior to the explosion in information communication technologies, had a much better time scouting talent.
As Their extensive networks of scouts, given the scant information medium of the time, proved more useful than the accumulation of word of mouth and better distributed at cheaper costs.
Televising sports also increased the money in the industry with the money received from through advertising which
,long surpassed the income from ticket sales. This increase in money made its way to players and created creating a divide between players and the fans. Newspaper reporters soon began to share that players cared more about their wardrobe than they did about winning.
Sports free Agency
The modern studio system has evolved from the studio system of the Golden Age era of Hollywood where actors are beholden to the studio. The same phenomenon can be seen in the sports free agency.
Agents act as high dimensional links between actors and studios. The power of these agents is a function of the power of their clients.
So A rise in the prominence of agents (peaking in the nineties) is a reflection of the power of stars in the studio system. As the cost of symbolizing information decreases, the power shifts from the studio to the actor and from team owner to player.
I want to be like Mike the rise of the entertainment dollar:
The cost of attention
,is quantified by the cost of advertising. Karl Menger made the point that value does not exist outside of the consciousness of man (can someone please tell the Marxists). So the job of companies specifically is to facilitate the value process of their customer. In addition to appealing to the cognitive realm or the ego most effectively. Value is gained by interfacing with your consciousness. The monetization of human feelings.
The baby boomers
During the postmodernist time, there was a concurrent explosion in population in the chief postmodern state, the USA. this population explosion is the much discussed, often maligned-baby boomers. These boomers are set to be the first ever teenagers. As the information typography of the time allowed children to spend more time with mass culture than their parents. These first teenagers were born after World War Two which ended in September 1945. They Would officially become adults in 1964. The first postmodernist generation came of age in 1964.
Postmodern education-The universities
The Boomers went to university at an unprecedented rate in human history but not to study anything worth studying. Why think when there’s an English department? The English department amounts to a formalized book club except that one person gets to tell you how much you understand the book. (so exactly like book club.) All you need is two idiots to start a university department. One to teach and the other to be taught. Idiots are also more easily radicalized. On top of that young people make terrific buffoons because they haven’t yet realized the extent of their buffoonery.
The Hitler Youth
This is not a point regarding the nature of the political protests of the 1960s. But, a point concerning the radical nature of youth as such. Nazi Germany, had children calling in their parents as enemies of the state
“The young in the Third Reich were growing up to have strong and healthy bodies, faith in the future of their country and in themselves and a sense of fellowship and camaraderie that shattered all class and economic and social barriers.”Shirer William,The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich
Postmodern music-The Times They Are a Changin
Bob Dylan’s last acoustic set at the Newport Folk Festival was in 1964. The set started with the times they are changing. Did the older pianists think that young whippersnapper Ludwig Beethoven sucked? Or was he considered a prodigy? It was the latter.
Music is habit forming. You like the music that you’ve listened to before. Intra-generational differential in habit formation begets intra-generational conflict. So when did the time start to really change?
If one understands rock and roll as the electrification of classical instruments, then one understands that a generational gaslamp might have some qualms because it’s nothing like anything they have ever heard before. Have you seen/heard a Led Zeppelin concert?
But it wasn’t Led Zeppelin who bore the brunt of this change. Ironically it came from the man who told us that the times were, in fact, a changing-Bobby Dylan. It is precisely because Dylan noticed the change in the times- did he in fact change. A third of the Newport Folk Festival booed him when he transitioned from acoustic to electronic instruments.
Oasis-The last rock and roll band
However fear not, for rock and roll also died and was replaced by the computer (with its electronic sounds). This new music made as little sense to rock and roll as rock and roll did to folk. Oasis- the last rock and roll band (because rock and roll is not just a music genre but an attitude) said it best. “[techno] just doesn’t make sense to me”.
The death of old hollywood
Content studios, best thought of in information theoretic terms, act as high dimensional information search filters. Directors act as a sort of media proxy entrepreneur. What set of pixels will correspond to a satiation of a specific set of preferences, of a specific set of viewers.
The possibility space of content
There exists a dialectic (shared information communication) between the content creator and the content studio. In the sense that, fundamentally, the studio exchanges capital for the intellectual product of the content creators. As a result, the studio helps determine the content with better directors who are able to command more creative freedom. It is still up to the studio to release and market the content.
As a result, excessive creative centralization upsets the quality of the movies being released. The movies in Nazi Germany being so bad, people would rather watch a play or go do the opera. Effectively eschewing a post modern technology in favor of a modern one.
Similarly, movie executives were individuals from the modern era. They were unable to keep up with the changing times. Hollywood studios were producing movies for a different generation that long since aged. This intergenerational shift collapsed the movie industry. Thereby, forcing movie executives to give younger directors greater creative freedom. This resulted
, in a series of explosive movies such Rebel Without a Cause and The Graduate. Both shot by directors straight out of film school. The younger directors were better able to appeal to the preferences of the time. It is a possibility space of content whereby, under centralized coordination, creators produce a lesser possibility space.
Postmodern Food-The Chicken Nugget
The chicken nugget is one of the great abominations of western civilization. The definition of postmodern food stems from the shift of emphasis between calorically dense foods, which were most necessary the closer one is to the level of subsistence, to nutrition dense food.
Distressed Denim is the post modern attire.
With Denim was originally contrived to be worn by gold prospectors. The rugged nature of the fabric makes it resistant to tears. Tears, later, purposely tourn for stylistic purposes. This transformed the nature of clothing from utensils to acts of self expression.
The consumer society
Edward Bernays, nephew of one Sigmund Freud, is the man who introduced psychology to the field of economics by getting firms to interface with the ego of the consumer. Consumers would identify with the products they purchase. Mass consumerism, thus, became an act of self expression.
Prior to pre-packaged manufacturing, products had no labels. If you wanted butter from the grocer, the grocer would literally cut out exactly how much butter from a slab of the yellow goo. Same applied to anything else in the store. A branded good is an economic object. The number of products increased in the modularity of manufacturing.
The Postmodern Crisis-Cuba
Miami is what Cuba used to be (plus cocaine). The American cultural phenomena of cocaine originated with the movie Scarface Despite the fact that its protagonist, Tony Montana (Al Pacino), died a decrepit death. A death was made all the more decrepit by the sensational amounts of cocaine snorted.
There is a false equivalence drawn between American nukes in Turkey, and Soviet nukes in Cuba. Cuba is naturally under an American sphere of influence. The fall of Cuba to communism was the second greatest American geopolitical disaster of the 20th century. Cuba is a country so close that the uSA decreed that if any country were to claim independence of Cuba from Spain, that country would be at war with the United States. The United States once even invaded Cuba itself.
Turkey, by contrast, is not under Russia’s sphere of influence. Turkey was once the Ottoman empire, once the Byzantine Empire, and once the Eastern Roman Empire. A civilization unto itself. One of the greatest civilizations ever. A perfectly suitable location for American missiles as a defense mechanism against one of their great historical rivals.
JFK- The First Postmodern President
The generals wanted to invade Cuba. John F. Kennedy (JFK), did not. The uSA would just be following the precedent set by the communist’s invasion of Korea.
JFK was one of America’s great IYI presidents. The model of the newly in vogue “Kennedy man”. The archetypal idea of masculinity, having shifted to the tall and skinny. Khrushchev, a boorish brute, more resembling traditional masculine ideals of yore, did not get the memo. Khrushchev saw JFK as someone that can be bullied. Khrushchev was most surprised by the American asymmetric response to the Soviet missiles.
The notion of a Mutually Assured Destruction is an insane concept, as it is rational escalation that results in nuclear war. An irrational actor is not required for Armageddon. Just the turning of the gears of state. The natural response, from the communist was not an invasion of Western Europe, nor an attack on Turkey, nor anything for that matter.
JFK did not invade Cuba in fear of Soviet response (nuclear armageddon). So JFK decided to avert armageddon by accelerating the process. By launching an advanced nuclear assault on communist Russia, if the USSR placed nuclear bombs in Cuba.
The Korean War-The Forgotten War
Much has been made about the political the potential desert disaster (rephrase) war between the USA and China in the 21st century, not realizing that the first war between the two powers was fought under Mao via the North Korean proxy.
The Korean War is not a Korean War but a Chinese American war fought in Korea. The Chinese knew that the USA would not resist Soviet escalation. China, under prediction by the USSR, the absolute lunacy of the situation began when China attacked first. (rephrase)
It is a testament to the fact that the nature of Western politicians and their inability to understand the nature of the communist aggression. The USSR lacked intercontinental missiles had no way to bomb the continent with the continental United States. (is that what you wanted to say?)
In addition, it would be the Soviet initiating the nuclear option, as the USA could have easily won a conventional war against China without even having to invade the mainland continent. Reminded China is the aggressive the USA has to pressure internal supply lines within China, with overwhelming air superiority to force the chairman to withdraw from the peninsula. This what soldiers dying for a free Korea deserved.
It’s clear, by this point in American history, that the soldiers didn’t want to fight. The generation just following the greatest generation lost their will to fight. Morale in the conscription army was so low that the Army Rangers (elite self selected unit) were dispersed to help improve it.
Vietnam-the first postmodern war
Vietnam was the first postmodern war. It was the first televised war. It was a war that splitted American society. A war from which American society has yet to recover from.
A war is not one based on the physical reality of military objectives but on the political objectives to be achieved through battle.
Captain America’s about face
His name is Steve Rogers. But you may know him as Captain America. Captain America sprung out at the greatest period of homogenisation in human history. The art of the time reflects this, the dystopian future of Aldus Huxley’s Brave New World is a homogenized one. Captain America, according to his creators, is a New Dealer. He starts his comic debut by punching Hitler in the face. Nevermind the fact that Hitler was a fan of the New Deal.
Captain America, from an archetypal perspective, can be thought of as the embodiment of the federal renormalization accelerated by America’s involvement in the world wars. He is the embodiment of the American soldier fighting for his Uncle Sam until Vietnam. Conscription was still in full effect at that point. Vietnam wasn’t a volunteer war. The system of volunteering is the most effective way to scale the military industrial complex through the enrollment of
Colonel David Hackworth is the closest thing to real life Captain America. He made his about face in the Vietnam war. Hackworth spent his entire life in the military. Vietnam was a war which started on dubious ground with the Gulf of Tonkin incident. Unlike in Iraq, in Vietnam, the most unintended consequence occurred. The natives did not want the Americans there. So what started out as a war against a communist uprising, ended up a war against American occupiers.
Ronald Ragen-The Space Industrial Military Complex
Ragen is my personal litmus test to see if someone understands the nature of conservative thought. Although heralded as America’s last great conservative and a foe to big government, Ragen expanded the state by increasing the level of American debt and the related budget deficit.
The Political Economy of Arms Manufacturement
The uSA arms manufacturing maximizes not based on production efficiency, But over political economy by segmenting production into as many congressional districts as possible. Arms manufacturers are able to lobby to ensure greater military spending. Unnecessarily increase in spending due to their inefficient production processes. Thereby rendering the advances of greater military spending mute.
Much of the Americans military spending post world war two could have been decreased with greater German Armament. Germany, after the World War, was not allowed an army. That gave Moscow too easy a route to Paris.
Additionally, greater military spending does not always translate to better killing machines. The M-16, is one of the greatest blunders in American history. The Americans went to Vietnam with worse machine guns than the communists. The automatic Kalashnikov 1947 (AK-47) was the greatest thing ever produced by the Soviet Union.
The military arms race is cited as a factor which accelerated the collapse of the Soviet Union. Ignoring the fact that America could not afford Star Wars either. With the uSA government deficit, absolutely exploding. Additionally, ignoring the fact that the collapse of Communism is a natural function of the evolution of time. All that the Space War showed us was that a capitalist economy can centralize more resources than a communist economy.
The Soviet Union, despite having a so called ‘economy’ a third that of the uSA (If you want to call it an economy) had achieved rough military parity with the US. The Soviets even beat NASA to space. The reason for this was that the uSA decided to innovate with the same centralized model as the Soviets. The exact way the communist do things but in a market economy. If the Soviet Union was run by committees, the uSA was run by companies. Unlike government institutions, Firms go bankrupt (at a greater rate). Much of the innovation in space exploration, since the Cold War, came from private firms at a fraction of the price.
The collapse of the USSR
The Soviet Union was always going to collapse. It was just a matter of stubbornness. How long did the Russians want to see this farce through? In order to have a successful revolution, the elites needed to be in favor of it. Communism, being an impeccable method of oppression, is kept in place by the elites so that they stay in power. The USSR would have collapsed a lot more quicker had the Arab oil embargo not exploited the price of fuel in the 1970s. Russia, a net exporter, has benefited tremendously from that.
Fukuyama declared the end of history. A statement that reflected the ad hoc nature of political science. What does the collapse of communism have to do with the death of history?
The Western way of life out competed that under communism. With Western jeans, deemed the more desirable, than the drabs of the state. Fashion is somehow cannot be as centralized as machine guns.
There was already a revolution against Stalin which weakened the ideological core of the USSR.
People talk about Detroit like it’s a failure of capitalism. On the contrary, Detroit shows us the power of capitalism. In Soviet Russia, there were hundreds of Detroits. The Difference is thatpeople still live there. In America, once it’s better to live elsewhere, people for the most part, left.
Detroit has to be understood in its historical context. It has to be viewed as one of the first great American cities, prior to the emergence of the new South (Texas) and the West (California). The East Coast and the greater Midwest were the most industrialized parts of America. With the great technologies rubber, oil and coal industries being located in the Midwest. The closest corollary to Detroit is Silicon Valley. Instead of computers, the bleeding edge of technology, they produced automobiles.
The question that haunted Henry Kissinger was: How can the USA not intervene when everyone else expects it to? The decline of the former imperial powers created a Power vacuums in their former colonies. That proved ample grounds for communism to fester. America lacked any sort of European style conservatism (the Switzerland approach), It’s politics was rife for centralization under “the progressive era”.
The uSA does possess, on the other hand, a history not of isolationism, but of self centrism. A question regarding American foreign policy, in the second half of the 20th century, is fundamentally, a question regarding the nature of an American response to communist expansion of the Soviet state.
The domino effect
Communism, from first principles, is destined for failure. The greatest benefits of having commies everywhere, is that there is no excuse as to why their nonsensical ideas don’t work. Hitler tried to kill as many people as possible. But managed to kill less people than, However, he was outdone by, not one, but two different communists: Stalin and Mao. The communists were just being communists. The crazy thing about Mao is that he saw Stalin kill everyone, then he said #metoo. Mao killed more people than Stalin because there were more people to kill.
Communist countries cannot survive without international markets. These communist economies usually export specialized raw materials for capital goods. If everyone was a Marxist, we would literally all starve to death at the same time. We don’t actually get to choose between the tyranny of heaven, or the dictatorship of the proletariat. One does not disagree with, with each according to his ends- to each to his means, on moral grounds but rather on grounds of feasibility. It is not actually possible to implement the ideas of Marx. The answer, has always been, is currently, and will always forever be, that Marxist Leninist communism is an impossibility. A figment of imagination, like Batman, Luke Skywalker or a benevolent monotheistic God.
The red scare
The focus, when combating communism, should always be on national defense through the removal of internal agitators. It should not be done by going to war with a communist. Only markets can outcompete communist state centralization. Much is made about the red scare. Not much is made about the fact that the communist political parties take orders from the Politburo. This makes the Communist Party not a political party but a foreign agent actively trying to undermine the state. In the sense that the goal of communism is the dictatorship of the proletariat.
Popper’s Open Society
How can an open society allow for tyrannical members? Is a famous thought experiment by Karl Popper. Democracies cannot allow for undemocratic members. Is the conclusion Popper comes to. But it is an incomplete one. How does one justify who is an enemy of the state? It is an easy scapegoating process by a totalitarian regime looking to remove legitimate agitators.
The answer is to take the agitators at their word. Hitler told everyone what he was going to do. The communists tell you that, the capitalist would sell to the communist the rope that will hang him. Lenin, capturing the essence of communism to perfection. The communists can’t make anything. Communism forever going down as one of the great farces of the human race. Whenever implemented, it is a complete cancer to anything complex. The state superstructure stifles man’s will to live.
Chairman’s China-Imagine China, but more centralized
Although duly documented, in the post post modern era. China’s rise is squarely a postmodern phenomenon. During the time that the uSA was busy destroying its empire for a line in the sand. China was rising. Accelerated in 2013 with the rise of Xi Jinping as the head of the Communist regime. China’s political processes are opaque to outsiders. The extent of centralized power is unclear. However, what can be inferred is that, since 2013, there has been an increasing crackdown on corruption in China. A crackdown on corruption as an expansion of the state. Unlike the United States, China is completely a centralized system.
China’s communist party somehow believes they can control the chaotic nature of markets. Seemingly flying in the face of Stalin’s decree of the removal of markets from the countryside. The rise of China in the later half of the twentieth century represents the greatest rise of poverty since the Industrial Revolution. Just five hundred years after Europe did it. Principally applying Western Technology at an unprecedented scale. This somehow neglects the fact that the reason that the recent rise was so great is because China was poor. Poor, because communism is stupid.
So although China’s growing has to contend with its fruits of its own growth (rephrase). In the sense that it is the market
s that pulled them out of poverty while markets are the biggest threat to any communist regime.
Henry Kissenger and the Death of History
Henry Kissinger, meant to be some sort of super genius, was better off as a chemist. Why did the uSA reintroduce its greatest geopolitical rival to the world? A country that the US fought a war against, 20 years prior in Korea. Kissenger, trying to win the press conference, woke up one of the greatest civilizations the world has ever known. Kissenger, would lament America’s lack of awareness of Chinese resolve. As most Americans, he have no respect for history.
The Contest for the South China Sea
From a military perspective, it is not the United States, but China’s neighbors that will determine the rate of Chinese expansion. China’s South Asian growth is contested by India. China’s ability to deploy force in the South China Sea, must be distinguished amongst two shells.
The closer one is to mainland China, the greater the advantage of China would be. Taiwan is the innermost shell of the South Chinese Sea. In addition to the history between both countries, makes Taiwan the most likely ground for expansion. Whilst the greater South China Sea is limited by Japan, and the Philippines. South Korea is always potentially up for invasion via the Kim Jong Un option.
The inner shell
China, despite having a smaller military budget than that of the uSA, has more than four times as many soldiers. The uSA’s greater budget is partly offset by transportation costs. It is much easier to defend than to project force. These transportation costs can be mitigated with advanced military bases in allied countries. China, better able to optimize its
their weapons with local parameters, making them more combat specific. While the uSA, has to optimize weaponry over many theaters.
American hegemony is defined by the ability to project force anywhere in the world. To upset this, China just has to establish hegemony over the South China Sea. The mission statement of the American armed forces is to be able to contest a two front war. The question is-can the USA exercise its sphere of influence both in the Middle East and the South China Sea?
Unlike the uSA, China has no California. The Philippines can be China’s California. As much of the incumbent political leaders in the Philippines are aligned with the USA (rephrase). The Philippines, previously thought as a bastion of Americana in Southeast Asia, is increasingly looking towards China both through immigration and a resentment of the incumbent political establishment.
Due to poor economic policies, a certain percentage of all Filipino businesses has to be held by nationals. This concentrates wealth in the hands of the same people. As foreign businesses, looking to invest, are forced to go to the same persons that had previously invested. Thereby concentrating wealth.
The Philippines most closely resembles Brasil. In the sense that prior to the colonization by the Spanish, there wasn’t a mass indigenous population in the Philippines. In Brazil, due to the influx of European germs. much of the local population was destroyed. This makes them very new cultures in many respects. The future is unclear what democracy looks like in either country given their history of dictatorship.
Fundamentally, it is Japan which poses the greatest determinant to Chinese regional hegemony. Japan, in the outer shell of the South China Sea. Is the greatest obstacle towards Chinese Eastern expansion. Japan is a country of aging, yet fierce, hundred million people. It still amounts to one of the greatest civilizations the world’s ever seen. The epitome of a civilization unto itself.
The question is how are they going to make/buy guns. Japan. Like Germany, Japan is no longer allowed the option of force. However, with an ever decreasing uSA presence, look no further than Kawasaki to shift back to aircraft carriers from jet skis. Regardless of the interests of the USA, China has a litany of historical grievances with Japan. With Imperial Japan dropping bubonic fleas on Chinese cities (just out of curiosity). China, long the regional hegemon, for much of his history, has not forgotten.
The Star Wars Generation
Much ofthe forces which killed monoculture, started during the Star Wars generation with the size of our shared imagination exploding, all while people started to pay attention to different things. People’s attention slowly bifurcated with the introduction of the Walkman in 1979, the VHS in 1974, the gameboy 1989, and the DVD in 1996. As people were allowed to self select their attention.
The American New Wave
Jaws may have been the first blockbuster. Star Wars was the first phenomena. Movies officially became mass culture with the introduction of Luke Skywalker. Star Wars was meant to capture the color and excitement of comics on the silver screen. A longer, Flash Gordon strip. In 1977, there was nothing that looked like Star Wars. Much like there was nothing that looked like the comics that came before.
Although information technology, known as cinema, began in the early 20th century, it did not peak as a medium until the later half of the same century with the American New Wave. There were a lot of factors which played into the supposedly “new wave” of American cinema. With a decrease in the cost of the ability to symbolize information, Demand curves being downward sloping, more people could shoot a video. Consequently, more things became a video. This was evident by the creation of a new genre- music videos. The more videos there were, the better people got at making them.
The greatest acolyte of the American New Wave is one George Lucas. Lucas is the most influential American filmmaker of all time. Both for his work in advancing the science of filmmaking, with Industrial Light Magic, and his actual movies (Star Wars, American Graffiti, Indiana Jones). ILM was responsible for the special effects of every Spielberg movie (they were friends from film school).
The Most Postmodern Movie – Roadtrip
Roadtrip, a movie which perfectly encapsulates the nature of the media environment that it finds itself in. Whereby, the plot of the movie consists of a boyfriend accidentaly mailing his girlfriend, a physical copy of a sex tape he made with another woman. A cross country trip then ensues. Whereby the video needed to be intercepted before making physical contact with the girlfriend.
In terms of the possibility space of content, the DVD era was characterized by more niche movies. With the death of the DVD, having profoundly restructured the economics of the movie industry, these economics suggest only high cost blockbusters are the only viable option.This idea of a blockbuster is currently being taken to its nth conclusion by current Hollywood.
The continued focus on foreign audiences, principally China with the increased size of the international box office, has forced Hollywood studios to create content more appealing to non Americans. The opposite can be said about Japan. It is a culture which produces content only for itself. Studios need to satiate a set of preferences over a larger geographic area. Thereby changing the nature of the content preferences to more global and less local preferences. Thereby robbing American cinema of its originality.
The Birth of cable
The media landscape is a function of the cost of symbolizing information. Satellite or cable are just a means to interface with the consumer. The greater the cost of symbolizing information, the greater the minimum necessary scale needed to fund the content. Cable, with its lower cost of communication, was able to outcompete network television.
The shift from satellite to cable represented a fundamental shift in the cost structure of the content wars. The means of transporting these variable images shifted from broadcasting via electromagnetic waves /via satellite, to sending the very same information, via fiber optic cables.
Minority rule (technical)
We know from Taleb’s minority rule that the preference of the minority dominates those of the majority if the costs to the majority are not too high. If one in ten at a dinner party doesn’t like sushi, you don’t eat sushi.
Scale is determined by the number of nodes in a network needed to sustain the content. The more people in a network, the greater the set of preferences that the content needs to appeal to. The greater the set of preferences, the more generic the content becomes as it has to appeal to the least exclusionary elements of the set.
So when content is created towards a general audience, it has to not offend as many people as possible while capturing as many sets of preferences as possible. This is why the early TV was so bland. Its cost structure was so high that everyone had to like it.
Cable, requiresa lower scale needed for content. As a decreased number of people were now required to sustain a channel. The possibility space of content increased with the decrease in the cost of communicating information. Niche content was, therefore, increasing. The more the content will match the preferences of any one individual, the more time they will spend attending to it.
MTV is fundamentally a niche movie channel. One of the great homogenizing forces in American history. Given the nature of cable setups, MTV was more accessible to rural youths than their metropolitan counterparts who did not have to experience culture from behind a screen.
The Personal computer-A Post Post Modern Society| Chapter 9| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
In June 2015 with Vanity Fair’s, cover of Caitlyn Jenner launches the post-postmodern era. Like the postmodern era, it is the change in the information landscape onto a scale free network. It took time to manifest in the geist. The birth of the post postmodern society started in 2007 with Steve Jobs’ introduction of the iPhone. The iPhone, just being the latest expression of the geometry of computing. The successor to the personal computer. Although social media use predates the iPhone, having constant access to a personal computer has caused its use to increase exponentially. However, it was in 2015 where phone manufacturers saw the biggest increase in sales.
The personal computer, as an information technology, was not mass adopted until it replaced the calculator and the typewriter. With the introduction of Word and Number Processor Programmes. Replacing the previous information technologies of the calculator and typewriter.
Although the usefulness of the personal computer is independent of the internet, it was the network effects of the internet that caused computing to explode as an appliance. The Internet is a natural successor to the information of the telegraph as a means of distributing information. The computer is a natural successor to the typewriter and calculator as a means of symbol creation and manipulation. Artificial Intelligence is a natural extension of the printing press as a means of automating a repetitive human process.
The Rise of CyberSpace
What the Wachowskis meant by the word Matrix In the movie The Matrix Is cyberspace. Cyberspace– the inside of computers. The Matrix, really refers to the matrix of binary digits. The size of cyberspace is not the total memory available to computers. But, rather the total time humans attend to it. In contrast to the rest of reality, the density of cyberspace is increasing with Moore’s law.
The Personal Computer Revolution:
The mass commercialisation of computing occurred in the years preceding the personal computer. These pioneering computers were mostly hulking mainframes. They were only accessible with computer code. Demand curves, being downward sloping, limited the number of people who could interface with them. As a result, computers were reserved to large institutions, not individual consumers.
The growth of Mobile OS has been lethargic. As despite being the new computing default, its design is still based on the way computers were designed originally.
The evolution of computing:
At first there was no difference between software and hardware because computers were special purpose. Meaning they were designed for a specific task like breaking codes, or solving some differential equations. Then computers became what Alan Turing refers to as “general purpose”. Meaning machines which could be programmed for differenting computing fuctions (which we call applications).
After computers were able to process different types of information, the next step was to get them to share that information with one another. This is the processes which started with the ARPANET but eventually culminated with the internet. After that, computers then got smaller and as a result we got the personal computer. The phone is just a natural extension of the process of making computers smaller. So small in fact, society will force you to take it everywhere.
*Note computing refers to the theory of computers. While computers refer to your, well, computer.
Said another way, first computing as a theory was a bundle. You did not have access to an application of computing as you could accesscomputing in general. However , as computers could start capturing more of the information world around it. We created different applications for the theory of computing. These condensed, easily repeatable computer functions called applications (heuristically I think of them as sub routine boxes) were stored in a file directory. Which is one our best meme regarding information storage whether it be physical or electronic.
The job of computing companies is to maximise the amount of information captured by computers in general and to maximise the ability of that information to interface with you.The level of interfacility between man and computer depends their appeal to our senses. The main ones that get exploited are visual, audio, touch.
The first step of the assimilation occurred when we started being able to interface with computers in real time. This happened when computers switched from batch processing to time shared terminals thanks to work of Licklider and McCarthy at MIT in the 1950s. Then we started to interface with them visually thanks to work of Douglas Engelbart and others.
But since Doug, the visual space hasn’t moved much (outside of VR) since the the 1960s. Additionally, most people don’t know what to do with touch outside of touchscreens and buttons. Nowadays, people are more sophisticated when it comes to computing. So there is less of a need to express information visually but these other avenues are not being pursued enough. However, we are at the point in history when the audio dimension is being captured by computers.
Physical and software interfaces:
The ability to interface with computers (man computer symbiosis) happens in two places-the physical as well as software interface.The physical interface comprises of product dimension, buttons, attachability/portability. The software interface comprises, well, everything else. Said another way hardware is the physical network of your phone. Software is the network of useful parts or computing functions. More succintly, the role of software is to facilitate the connection between the applications that you use.
The Desktop Interface Macintosh-Insanely Great
The personal computer is squarely an American phenomenon. Like all good American phenomena, it involved dudes tinkering in a garage (usually their parent’s). As the cost of storing a bit decreased, computers became more accessible to hobbyists. One such hobbyist was the shy Steve Wozniak. Who along with his other friend, Steve, would start a process that would change the world. Apple’s first computers were just pre-assembled hobbyist type computers. These pre-assembled computers would increase in sophistication. Eventually culminating in the first modern personal computer the Macintosh in 1984.
Fundamentally, the Macintosh is the commercialisation of the concept of the Memex contrived by Baneever Bush. It was expounded upon by Douglas Engelbart, the most important consumer designer of all time (as he understands that the computer is the natural evolution of paper). It was Engelbart who introduced the mouse, the idea of visualized computer objects and the abstraction of a desktop. The computer being the latest extension of the image machine, the television. Bitmapping is to the computer what algebraic geometry is to mathematics. A codification of the points in space onto a numeric index.
When it comes to the argument if Windows copied Apple, it should be noted that Steve did not simply copy paste the work of Xerox PARC in a very viable commercial computer. He added to the design. Additionally, like Steve explained in his legendary Stanford address, Microsoft copied the size of the spaces between the letters. The only unfortunate thing is that Bill did not copy Steve more, a mistake Google will not do.
Like Steve said, the thing about Windows is that they have no taste whatsoever. Instead of calling it Windows, they should have just called it boxes, Microsoft boxes. The reason why Apple products have rounded edges from apps to appliances, comes down to Steve Jobs’ genius as a computer designer. It is easier to detect a change over a smooth surface. When the edges are square, they’re startling to the eye as the rate of change is too great. With a circle, the rate of change at any given point is too great. To solve this problem, Steve Jobs literally squared the circle.
The Laptop computer
Steve Jobs would not be alive to see his laptop designs mature into something astounding with the 2012 Macbook Pro. The laptop industry increasingly resembles that of the television industry, where the differences between generations are becoming increasingly decreasing.
Microsoft would represent a fundamental shift in the computing industry at large. The balance of power shifted from hardware to software with hardware components becoming increasingly commoditized.
The Internet-Shared Cyberspace
The next significant achievement in the computer revolution was the establishment of a coherent network of communication between machines. The ARPANET, the precursor to the internet, established a proof of concept for the internet. An ability to share information from one large scale institution to another.
An Online Bulletin Board
Prior to the World Wide Web (www.) The internet was restricted to online bulletin boards (BBs). These were for the computer enthusiasts of the world. Still for them, BBs provided much of the same experiences afforded to current Social Media. Computer games and other salient information started being shared en masse.
The World Wide Web (www)
It was not until the establishment of the world wide web (www) that Internet culture became a mass culture. The exact inflection point was in 1996 with the biggest disaster in Everest history being reported in real time on the internet.
Like ARPANET, the web was at the beginning academic in nature. The purpose of the early web was to scale the ARPANET to anyone with an Internet connection. This was done by Tim Berners Lee at CERN. Since its inception, however, the web was used mostly to share pictures, not academic papers.
As shared cyberspace got denser, it became increasingly valuable to navigate it. Google made its first dollar by selling the views received from advertisers to users who wanted to use their search service. Their ability to organize cyberspace, as it turns out, was extraordinarily valuable. Google, however, far from the first search engine, was just the best. The dominance of Google, highlighting the winner-takes-all effect of internet markets (fat tails). Google, unlike its competitors, used unique and increasing complex algorithms to organize data. The sheer volume of cyberspace makes it impossible for anything but a computer to sort through.
As Google’s founder put it, Google’s goal is to organize all of the information on the internet. Not to tell Google’s founders about their business model, but Google organizes insofar as they index unstructured data in cyberspace. What first started out as an index of the most relevant websites on the web,
Web Browser- A Portal to shared cyberspace
A web browser, being another term for portal to shared cyberspace. In economics the only costs are opportunity costs. From the first web browser Mosaic, functionality dedicated to the sharing of images comes at the expense of academic papers.
Web 1.0-Space to Cyberspace
The first means of private interpersonal communication comes from email. As the name suggests, there’s just an electronification of mail with an associated instant messenger.
Blogging, as a medium, peaked in the early aughts. It had a recent Renaissance under Substack in the early 2020s. Substack, fundamentally solving the problem of blogging. A centralized directory to sort through all blogs. Substack solves monetization by allowing users to subscribe to creators. Blogging, during the wild wild west days of cyberspace, was more successful as the transition from print to cyber was slow, giving bloggers less competition. In addition, social media became a much more market effective way of self expression.
Web 2.0-A Social Media
MySpace, the first modern social media is perhaps the greatest example of the internet’s shift from academia to media. MySpace, more of a media than a technology company, came up with a product a generation early. This is mostly the case with non-technical companies in a technical field. Myspace provided a clunky user experience due to slow internet connection and poor computers. The emphasis on MySpace was more on content creation. Whereas the emphasis of Facebook was on creators. The audiences were more content to watch creators.
Facebook is a technology company by contrast. It was quickly able to scale a minimalist user experience. Facebook was not a revolutionary product, Friendster was already exploding. However, Facebook was the best social media platform. Facebook’s minimalist design, superior technology and greater vision culminated in a paradigm shift- the newsfeed. In contrast to visiting your friends profile one at a time, Facebook, would algorithmically agglomerate salient information on the Newsfeed. Before Facebook would try to incorporate other features of other popular social media websites.
Early Facebook was very much a web 1.0 phenomenon. The goal was to bring a network of friends from space onto cyberspace. Social media would then shift to the web 2.0 paradigm with the goal
, for users to create the content that generate the cash flow. As Facebook developed, content created by professionals increasingly dominated.
In an industry that cool, Google couldn’t break into social media. Google’s closest thing to Social Media was YouTube. Purchased as Google’s own video streaming service, it could not take advantage of network effects in its attempt to compete with Facebook. Google Plus was not very good.
Web 2.0-Network Effects
On the evolution of video streaming
The information technology of the latter half of the 20th century on the personal computer,
. Is was out competing with the information technology of the first half of the 20th century: cinema and television. Fundamentally speaking, video streaming is just video content being delivered through fiber optic cables as opposed to satellite or other cables. The cost of symbolic communication with the internet has led to the death of the studio system. With amateur content increasingly outcompeting networked content.
Unlike traditional content studios, Netflix does not micromanage its creators. This gave them an advantage over legacy media. As Netflix was able to have more diverse content. However, its cost per view was still higher than Youtube’s.
The advantage that Youtube has over Netflix is that it has more content about more content. The decreasing cost of recording information has caused an increase in the quality of amateur content.
The principle difference between podcast and radio is that radio encodes audio over the electromagnetic spectrum. Podcasts, records audio in a binary. Podcasts are the evolution of radio in the sense that podcasts can be stored in cyberspace. While a radio has to be live broadcasted. Podcasts fundamentally represent a room in cyberspace. An indexation of one of earth’s possible sub realities that exist on Earth.
What started out as a natural evolution of the music streaming, has ended up as a colossal waste of money. Spotify still has time to resume the music revolution that it started. In the sense that the ultimate destiny for a Spotify, as a company, is to become a platform for audio content. The way YouTube is a platform for video content. The last attempt at this was SoundCloud, and it failed due to a limited business model. Unlike Spotify, SoundCloud did not offer a subscription to a catalog of labeled music.
Spotify stopped restricting itself to just music and looked to capture the greater audio market. It chose to overpay for talent that YouTube got for free. Then it forced advertising for other podcasts that it overpaid for. For users pay not to be advertised to. While not investing in the underlying information technology, that allowed these podcasters to go to YouTube in the first place.
The iPhone, a new portal to cyberspace arrived. It was the next iteration in the variable image revolution. The iPhone, or the two way mobile variable image machine, is to the post postmodern generation. It was what the television was to the postmodern generation.
Instead of having a keyboard and mouse, computing was interfaced via fingers. The reason for this comes down to efficiency. The buttons on the screen are used about half the time. So it’s not worth dedicating a button to something that is not essential. Space, is
To sum up Jobs’ computing career. He commercialized one paradigm of computing (the personal computer). He replaced the Walkman and the CD player with the Ipod. He Invented two different portals to cyberspace: The iPhone and ipad. Both of these two portals have different dimensions of the same fundamental technology, different evolutions, in the geometry of computing.
Steve Jobs is the second greatest computer designer in history. He trailed the one and only Douglas ‘Doug’ Engelbart. Jobs is the greatest computer manufacturer of all time, despite not being a hardware guy. Jobs’ early exit from Apple was because computing, as an industry, was still too immature to fulfill his vision. Moreover, Jobs did not know enough about computers to know what they were and were not capable of. After leaving Apple, Jobs would go on to fund NEXT (later acquired by Apple). Also, he bought Lucas animations (later Pixar). Jobs would end up making the bulk of his money from Pixar, after going fifty million in deep before the release of Toy Story: The technological successor to Walt Disney’s Cinderella.
Google’s Android took the Microsoft route towards Apple. Offering an operating system as a service for other foreign manufacturers (if there is another reason then state it). Also, Google offered their own end to end computer experience with the Pixel phone. This eventually led Google to displace Apple as the world’s largest phone company.
Facebook operates at a lower scale than Google. It was the very issue of scale
, that forced Facebook out of making smartphones. Facebook would then try to compensate with a reduced version of Google’s Android. Alternatively, Facebook could have partnered with a traditional smartphone manufacturer, write an OS as a competitor to Android, with a greater emphasis on social media. But that is exactly Facebook’s problem. It is just a social media that is not content with being just a social media. It has no portal to cyberspace, putting it behind all of its would-be competitors in that respect.
Blackberry-The variable text machine
the cultural phenomenon of the Blackberry, despite infinitesimally small costs, charged exorbitant fees for texts and calls. As a result, a slew of services arose to deal with these issues (Skype, AOL Messenger, MSN). The advantage of the BlackBerry over these other services, is that Blackberry had a mobile portal to a still nascent cyberspace. BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) was just the mobile version of AOL Instant Messenger.
Variable Image Machine
The iPhones created larger screen at the expense of the keyboard. That made it more of a photography device. If the iPod, is the successor to the Walkman, then The iPhone is the successor to the Polaroid. The ability to capture and share variable images directly led to the proliferation of image based social media. A natural function of a new portal to cyberspace. In addition, it led to the death of non touch screen smartphones. The iPhone X marks the fundamental shift in the phone from a variable text machine to a variable image machine. As most of the excess weight of the product went towards the screen and the camera.
Variable Picture Machine-Instagram
Instagram, (later acquired by Facebook) chose to have limited yet emphasized functionality-the photograph. People could share photos, while having access to a mobile Photoshop-the filter. Sharing photos on Facebook, although possible, was not emphasized by the site. With photos failing on a mobile uploads album. Albums are necessary to post pictures on Facebook which created a problem for
Filters, as a concept, were so successful that phone manufacturers would provide them as part of their default camera application. The advances in mobile camera technology are a result of
, shifting from hardware to software during this time. The definition of what constitutes a picture became increasingly distant.
The real effects of this trend will be seen in video editing. Given that CGI did nothing but enhance cinema. As the ability to engage in increasingly fanciful edits will make the sharing of increasingly sophisticated but nonetheless amateur content possible.
Instant Photo Machine-Snapchat
Snapchat inherited Facebook status as the media of the youth by eliminating quality restraint and time consideration from their content. Snapchats biggest innovation was the concept of a story. A story is a picture which will only be visible for a day. The time constraint, being the delineating factor between stories and traditional posts. The fleeting nature of it, is the attraction. Instagram’s self imposed quality limit allowed other camera based social media to traffic in the less attractive. Snapchat was less picky, and was therefore able to create more content. It was also able to attract more people to more places in cyberspace. It was not until Instagram relaxed it’s quality constraint that they morphed into competitors to Snapchat.
Short Video Machine-Vine and TikTok
Tiktok reintroduced the concept of the flipbook to the 21st century. The meme is the modern day poster. The world was not ready for the reintroduction of the flipbook in 2014 with Vine. However, it would be with TikTok. Tiktok inherited the status as social media of the youth from Snapchat.
Twitter, as a social media, is bolstered by smartphones as now people have more opportunities to micro blog. In addition to having more time to read microblogs. Although lacking the user base of Facebook or Instagram, Twitter’s effect on culture is superior. 2016 can be thought as the year Twitter went mainstream. I got on Twitter before my freshman year of high school in 2011. Prior to the Trump phenomenon. Twitter, I can assure you, is fun. As to the question to what extent is Twitter real life? A naive answer would be that Twitter is real life to the extent that people attend to it. However, corporate media is disproportionately influenced by Twitter. Therefore, espouse the views on Twitter onto other informational channels.
The shift of the portal to cyberspace from desktop to mobile is the differentiating factor between Gen Y and Gen Z. Facebook on desktop was not outdated, but obsolete. In fact, Facebook was never able actually to shift to mobile.The nature of the site changed by the smaller screen. No longer was there a redundant sidebar to fill. Therefore mobile ads had to be part of the feed. Zuckerberg, who grew up with the personal computer as his portal to cyberspace, was already unprepared for the shift to mobile. As a result, Zuckerberg chose to eschew this generation cyberspace portal for the next- virtual reality. A pivot whose effectiveness remains to be seen.
Up to 2015, Facebook remained the dominant social media. Only to be overtaken by another acquired Facebook product, Instagram. Facebook operates at a larger scale, compared to other social media. We know this because Facebook keeps buying all other social media. Cyberspace is after all a physical place in space. Facebook is a series of data servers. So when Facebook purchases an attention product, the attention products are given the technology equivalent of meth. Instagram, literally loads faster with Facebook. Since acquiring these brands, however, Facebook has proceeded to destroy any previous brand loyalty. However, from a technological perspective, it makes total sense to merge with Facebook.
An election in cyberspace-PostpostModern Political engineering
2015 is the birth of the post-postmodern age and the effect of social media can be seen by the influences they had on the elections of that time with all of the candidates, who had a big presence on social media-Trump, Duterte and the Brexit campaign. All using the newest techniques to appeal to voters. While, their traditional adversaries were more likely to run a post modern election campaign.
Cambridge Analytica represents the automation of political engineering. The term political engineering was pioneered by the Russians. It is known elsewhere as the office of public relations. The presence of machine learning, in the sense previously ads were more generic as they were meant to appeal to more people, everyone’s newsfeed became a unique display. The ads became more bespoke. The data is gathered thanks to Facebook’s last data policy. Facebook was also used as an information dissemination mechanism.
The Future|Chapter 10| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
Dynamic images-Games in cyberspace
Unlike animated movies whereby images are displayed in a pre-arranged order, Video games react to the decisions of the player forcing graphics to be rendered in real-time making them dynamic. Video games also represent the electrification of action figures. Whereby, in 1985, when forced to choose between Rambo, Barbie or a Nintendo NES (a game console), children chose the NES. By 1993, video games became mass culture with more children able to recognise Sonic or Mario (iconic video game characters) than Mickey Mouse. Said another way, 1993 was the year dynamic images started to surpass variable images.
The reason why video games find themselves in the chapter about the future stems from the fact that despite being produced decades apart, all of Microsoft Xboxes are roughly the same size. Hardware designers are constrained by what consumers deem to be an acceptable size of an Xbox.
Nowhere has the rise of cyberspace been more noticeable than the rise of video games. Video games, as computer programs, were so computationally intensive that the first games were hardwired. Each game was a specific set of circuit boards, which can only run one game. Every Game was a new set of circuit boards. Additionally, you had to go to a physical place in space to play video games- the legendary arcade.
Prior to the video-fication of games, arcades were considered a lowbrow endeavor and entirely mechanical. The biggest game there was pinball. The arcade went by the way of the brick and mortar chess club, but is poised for a resurgence in the VR era for the same reason as before. The high cost of information technologies forces people together. As these technologies progress, more people can afford to buy them. The decreasing cost of computing made arcades less relevant with the introduction of the home console and gaming computer. Demand curves being downward sloping, increased ease of access to games led to increase in people’s attention to them. A literal increase in the size of cyberspace.
The home console
The home console forgoes the parts of the computer which are not necessary for games in order to provide a richer gaming experience at a cheaper price.
These cyberspace worlds became increasingly salient and increasingly networked. Although the Sega Genesis and Nintendo 64 pioneered the home console market, it was not until the publication of Doom – The subsequent lan based death matches, that games become a phenomenon. Doom outsold Windows 92. A startling phenomena when you consider that both programs exploit the most recent developments of computer graphics-the ability to project three dimensional images. John Carmack, the developer of the Doom being one of the greatest programmers of his generation.
A computer can only represent a limited amount of information on screen. The minimum subdivision of the screen is called a pixel. The number of pixels that can be displayed on screen is the resolution. Computers can only fetch and retrieve limited amount of information per cycle (or second). The lower the resolution, the less pixels I have, the faster I can alter what is on-screen. This is why e-sports player’s don’t game on the highest possible resolution. The game will be slower.
Despite the increasing level of computation (indexation). Most credit the Golden era of video games from the arcade games of the 70s to the computer games of the 1990s (something is missing). Personally, I declare the end of the Golden era of gaming with the release of Microsoft’s Xbox in 2001 (my first console). Although, in theory, games should have gotten better
. Since we are able to represent more information on the screen in a quicker way. It’s been all downhill since Halo.In fact, even Halo is not safe anymore.
In 2014, the iconic franchise) was remastered. One could either play with 2001’s graphics or 2014’s. I went with 2001’s (and it wasn’t for nostalgia).The new graphics are annoying
, since most of the advances in computer processing go toward texture rendering. Making objects look more detailed is nice. But I am here to defend the earth from an alien invasion. Ideally, the background should not distract.
At the end of the day, in-depth texture rendering in itself is almost a useless pursuit. As nature encodes information on a quantum level, computers (ordinateur) encode it on a binary level. This is the biggest obstacle against virtual reality. Preventing it from being used as anything other than a substitute for a monitor (TV or computer).The mind likes fractal roughness. Making augmented reality (AR) the better bet. As you can think of an electronic billboard as an example of an AR.
Nintendo understood this implicitly as most of the games are drawn as cartoons. What Disney Animation did in 1937, took George Lucas’ Industrial Light Magic until the 1990s to achieve. Despite Nintendo’s Switch being slower, it managed to compete with the newer consoles. What matters is that the gameplay is fun. Yes, you do get used to a certain level of graphical processing. But after a point, it is the same. As increasing computation (indexation) and programming complexity has actually made the industry paradoxically worse.
As David Brevik lead programmer of Diablo 1 and 2 (arguably the greatest pc game in history) believes graphics should never interfere with gameplay.
PLATO: that friendly orange glow
The PLATO computer system is something that you probably never heard of. Which is a shame, because PLATO is one of the greatest achievements of the 20th century. What happened on PLATO took forty years to happen on your computer. And it all comes down to that friendly orange glow.
PLATO was fundamentally a time sharing computer system that limited users not by the time they could spend on it, but by how many instructions they could run using their computers. The instructions were measured in the thousands, while today standard computers deal in the billions. Despite this, you could do on PLATO almost everything you could do on today’s computers. That was IN THE EARLY 1970S!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The genius of the PLATO system is what eventually made it obsolete. The friendly orange flow refers to the fact that the computer display was rendered using a neon gas. A gas which glows orange. Unlike today’s computers who have a dedicated graphics processing unit, PLATO had to minimize the use of computation. It was computationally too expensive to bitmap a display. Despite this poor display, some of the best games ever were on PLATO. (I am currently waiting for someone to make a mobile version of Empire).
The rise of the nerds
There was a definitive end to the Golden Age of comic cinema. It was the exact moment Sylvester Stallone made an appearance on screen. Silvester Stallone- formerly Sly Stallone before the filming of Guardians of the Galaxy 2. Once the Pinnacle of 1980s masculinity is now in a space movie featuring a talking raccoon and a tree? Rocky Balboa perhaps quite literally took a few too many to the head. As his appearance. I cannot stress this enough, was actually completely/absolutely/totally incomprehensible. The reason for that is that Rambo was never meant to be on Star Trek.The revenge of the Nerds is now complete.
The Revenge of the nerds [a series of movies] of which I have only seen 76 minutes of the sequel (Because that is the exact amount of time to watch a revenge of the Nerds movie). Can only be viewed in the greater context of rising nerd culture.
The rise of the nerds closely parallels the rise of computing as such. It Can first be spotted in the aforementioned Star Trek with the transition from Kirk to Picard.This
is was a transition so hallowed in Dorkdom that it was part of the pilot of the Big Bang Theory highlighting two Dorks meeting in their natural habitat. Kirk or Picard one mutters. Picard over Kirk.But original over Next Generation.
Why? Because the king of the dorks, the head dork himself-Mr Spock, a character who the dorks believe to embody logic, is actually a character of repression. A repression which led him to make out ironically with a member of the cast of the Guardians of the Galaxy 2 in 2009’s Star Trek. (This made the nerds very upset.)
Now it is worth comprehending that the United States is a place in time and space seemingly devoid of it-it is about the now. America does sometimes fall in love with its past as can be seen by the success of the Barry Crockett Disneyland shows.
The Kobayashi Maru
This makes the uSAit a very special place, as it is about the only culture in existence who could have produced the Kobayashi Maru.
Kobayashi Maru, or the Impossible situation, is a tale straight out of the old country. But only in the USA can there can be a hero who beats the impossible (by cheating).
Kirk is better thought of as a Space Cowboy resembling American action movies heroes of yore. Unlike the stage actor Jon Stewart who basically stayed in character throughout the duration of the X-Men franchise, Stewart brought, let’s just say, a less red blooded performance, but still with some iconic moments
After all “The line will be drawn here. No further. “
Now we seem to be at the peak of nerd culture, like I said before comic movies are now a thing. However, it is hard to understand when this exact point in cinema actually started.The creators of 2003’s Hulk called each other worried after having seen Sam Rami’s Spider-Man. They were worried that their Hulk movie wouldn’t do well because Spiderman created a genre. Seemingly ignoring the fact that the climax of their movie consists of the Hulk (the embodiment of physical rage) fighting a cloud (which also happens to be his father at the same time). Yes, really.
Crediting the birth of the comic movie genre to Spiderman has more to do with the critical success of the film. Spiderman being the Apex of Amy Pascal’s reign as head of Sony Pictures than the actual truth of the matter. However if you wanted to say when this golden age started I would say with Hugh Jackman’s original X-Men franchise (starring Captain Picard as Professor X).
The American withdrawal from Afghanistan is reminiscent of the Roman retreat from Britain less than 100 years before the fall of the empire itself. The original conquest of Anglestan, by Caesar, is best compared to the moon landing. Anglestan was so remote at the time that the ability to rule it was taken as a triumph of Roman technological ingenuity. The Romans left it because they were not able to maintain the apex of the empire.
It can be argued that after the 911 terror attacks, Americans wanted war for what amounted to be the greatest attack on the United States since the War of Independence. However, much of the empire has been lost in the mountains and caves of Afghanistan. The uSA, even credits Afghanistan with ending the USSR. The Americans, on the other hand, had precision guided weapons. However, try to ‘precisely’ guide a missile into a cave. Let alone, every cave in the western Himalayas.
The conflict with Al-Qaeda is emblematic of the shift of scale of warfare from mass engagement between countries, to countries trying to use mass armies to fight non-state actors. As a result of the decreasing cost of destruction, warfare is now possible by non government institutions. The warfare of the future is the conflict between the state and the individual.
How does a state respond to the aggression of a non state actor? George Bush, blamed the state that they were housed in. Does one invade Mexico to deal with the cartels? And if you do succeed in neutralizing the criminal syndicate, does one engage in state building? In a place in space that never had a state in order to ensure that the cartels never return? A more sensible response would have been the use of special forces and elite regular forces units on an attack on al Qaeda. Not a full scale invasion.
Web 3.0-Decentralized Cyberspace
After a certain point, shared cyberspace started to overtake private cyberspace (the personal computer). Google, during its early history, was the world’s largest computer manufacturer. Their best client being themselves. By manufacturing only their own internal servers, Google made more computers than anyone on earth.
The only difference between private cyberspace (the personal computer) and shared cyberspace (The Internet) is the location of the data. Is it stored on your hard drive or Google’s data server? The shift from hard drive to Cloud Storage started with Google Docs and other related products.
Unlike traditional computing, cloud computing has two bottlenecks to overcome, not one. Both suffer from the fundamental bottleneck of computers. The amount of binary digits that can be fetched and retrieved per cycle.
Cloud computers have to contend with fetching and retrieving these digits over a larger geographical area. The distance between your terminal and Google’s servers is greater than the distance between your CPU and the terminal. Internet speed and coverage are currently the dimensions by which cloud computing scales over.
The journey to the cloud is a gradual one. The same efficiency arguments in favor of self-driving cars apply to cloud computing. It is The minimization of slack as most of the processing power is unused most of the time. In addition, most people spend their time idle on the computer instead of using it.
However, when it comes to a freedom of thought argument, Centralized computing means centralized information. Demand curves being downward sloping, censorship has never been cheaper.
The most limited part of any mobile computer is the battery that powers it. In the sense, you are literally limited by how much power is in your battery.
Broadband, is what determines how much space has access to cyberspace. The speed of the broadband determines the density of cyberspace.
Most of the arguments regarding the general nature of cryptocurrency dispute the value of a digital coin. Most of these arguments ignore the fundamental definition of money as a useful medium of exchange. Cryptocurrencies provide a useful medium of exchange for countries trying to evade the international dollar SWIFT system.
On a micro scale, it is easier to send large sums of money with cryptocurrency than through the traditional banking sector.
The fundamental question of the banking industry is, why does it cost so much money and take so much time for bank transfers? Fundamentally, money is a digit which is a symbol. Why is there a bifurcation, in the cost of sharing a number denoting money as opposed to any kind of number?
Despite their IPO in 2002, PayPal is a company from the future. What started out as an avangarde effort into the mobile payment space, ended up with a bundling of money and email. PayPal was originally designed as a way to share money via the Palm Pilot, via infrared radiation. Infrared, the precursor to bluetooth, was limited in the density of information that can be shared and the range it can be shared over. In addition to the fact that nobody outside of Silicon Valley (the dork capital of the world) had a Palm Pilot. Palm Pilot had roughly a cap of five million users. That network was not, big enough network to make payments over. The iPhone penetration is what the Palm Pilot could not achieve. Paypal’s original vision of a digital wallet copied by Apple and Google Pay.
The market for email users, however, is much larger. In addition to being an easier way to share money than by bank transfer. PayPal’s value came as a universal web payment interface or API. Traditional banks were secured by arcane regulations which make barriers to entry extremely high. The banks were openly wondering why they would cannibalize their own business by investing in web payments. Banks were slow to pivot towards web payments.
Cyberspace, is a place in space. It is the location of the physical servers that hold the binary digits which comprise the Matrix. PayPal’s first problem was that it was mainly designed for Ebay, not for the web at large. As e-commerce on the web was still in its nascent. PayPal’s market had still not matured. The fundamental determinant behind PayPal’s success was convenience.
The fundamental question, regarding a digital wallet (like a physical wallet) is security.
The value of Bitcoin, stems from its cryptography. Bitcoin is a secure object in cyberspace. Satoshi Nakamoto invented the first crypto-currency: Bitcoin. It was a response to the financial crisis in 2008. Cryptographically secured currencies, or cryptocurrencies, are a subset of cyber currency, i.e., currencies used in cyberspace. The difference between the two comes down to centralized as opposed to decentralized securitisation. By distributing validation, through a blockchain, the value of a bitcoin is not fungible by others (government or otherwise).
The Dark Web
What makes the dark web so dark? Unlike the regular web, you cannot see who uses it. The Wild Wild West www of cyberspace is currently being sustained by the American intelligence agencies. In order to ensure that operators are able to securely share information.
The same is true for anyone for that matter. That’s the problem or the solution, depending on which perspective you take. The Dark Web still has not gone mainstream. So the only people using it are the people who can’t use the regular web. The content on it there is therefore a reflection of this, mostly consisting with otherwise illegal services.
The paradox of the dark web is its limited scale. More illegal pornography is hosted on the worldwide web than the dark web. However, the difference between these two webs are the several dozen orders of magnitude in the amount of data stored on each of them. The worldwide web allows for opportunities to hide in plain sight. While the dark web scrambles your IP, allowing you to anonymously reach the Torrent (is that what you meant) browser.
The ability to share content digitally is just a natural function of the speed of navigating cyberspace. People started sharing content with each other as soon as they were to do so. Fundamentally, a natural evolution in information technology was repressed by industry incumbents. Music piracy stopped being an existential threat once it became convenient to buy content using the same medium.Your defense against piracy is the cost of convenience.
The nature of attention economics is such that despite not making money on the original sale. Attention products are fat tail dominated so it’s so many mutually beneficial trades if someone pirates your content.
Chan sites + Reddit
In terms of the dark places on the regular web, we look no further than the bulletin board sites mentioned along in decreasing orders of depravity-8chan, 4chan, Reddit. Whereby, in the Chan family of sites, unlike traditional social media, users retain anonymity. This allows for a level of depravity that
is not even profitable,
However, discussions which originate on the ‘chan’ sites seep their way into traditional social media and corporate media. Completing the cycle of the expression of notes from the underground. These notes became increasingly louder as they’re more people now writing them. A trend increasing with the increasing population density is cyberspace.
Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and private cyberspace
The ability to secure an image in cyberspace is what is known as an NFT.
The actual antagonist of the Matrix franchise was Agent Smith. He was
The rise of the snicher-net, can be first spotted in 2009. With NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal’s, (legendary) rap in diss towards (other) NBA superstar Kobe Bryant in a New York City night club.
You know how I be, last week Kobe couldn’t do without me
Kobe tell me how my a@@ tasteShaq ‘Diesel’ O’Neal
What Shaq thought was a private moment in space, is forever captured in the annals of cyberspace.
As shared cyberspace, is increasingly filled with ideological landmines. The group chat remains a relatively safe space for refuse. With future social media built on the shared media of these self selected private networks.
The advent of smart contracts represents an involution in the set of symbolistic systems, applied to law, from alphabetical symbols to boolean circuits. This Allowed for a decentralization in information disputation by allowing automatic contingencies to be triggered, based on certain criteria.
The homepod is the spiritual successor to the universal remote, the dream device of nerds in the early aughts. The fundamental question of the universal remote is how many household appliances are accessible by it. With home appliances becoming increasingly smart. Smartness refers to the extent to which multiprocessors are integrated as part of an appliance. All appliances already have an electronic circuit. This is what allows you to have multiple options on your washing machine. Now ironically, the company best suited for a homepod is the only company not making one.
Samsung, who prior to Google‘s Ascendance in the smartphone industry, was the second best smartphone manufacturer in the world. In addition to being one of the best air conditioning, television, and other household appliance company in the world. This can be considered as the true definition of a semiconductor company. Now they have they however, like a home pod to tie all these features together.
The internet of things
The Home pod is essentially a smart speaker pioneered by Amazon (replicated by everyone else)e. This should come as no surprise that a company without an orthodox portal to cyberspace would Pioneer a new one- Alexa. The smart, in the smart speaker, refers to the AI personal assistant embedded in the device.
The rest of the computing industry would follow suit with their own smart speaker. Usually, a half-hearted attempt with a digital assistant being bundled with an average speaker. The home pod market is a microcosm for the respective ecosystems that each company provides.
The End|Chapter 11| Complexity, Information Theory and the Nature of Symbolic systems: The Death of the Gods and the Revolt Against Reason
There are more states of disorder in the universe than there are states of order. Said another way, there are more ways to die than there are to live. This fundamental asymmetric fragility is what makes the advent of life so remarkable. There have been many mass extinctions before the mass extinction of the dinosaurs.
On a cross-sectional basis, the universe being so vast, One can fall into the trap of thinking-surely, life must exist somewhere else. However, from a time series perspective, as usual, things take a turn. For two alien civilizations to meet, they need to be alive at the same time. Which means that life needs to survive through time at every point in time. Giving us a far lesser chance of sharing the universe with anyone.
Cascading Complexity Catastrophe-Gaia’s Death
Now it is worth noting that the distinction between Gaia and gaia is to do with the establishment of an ecosystem. We have a very monocentric view of plants. We ignore the interrelation between parts. Researchers in South America showed us that not all plants derive their energy from photosynthesis. The plants derive their energy from the mycelial web which connects plants in an ecosystem. One cannot distinguish the soil of a potted plant from the plant itself. It is the mycological network that helps coordinate the flow of information from plant to plant. Most people do not think of plants as computers. However, plants must calculate how to best deploy themselves in order to maximize some function of rain, sun, wind and avoid disease.
In nature, one can notice the clustering of foliage as the probability of a tree to grow in the presence of other trees. If there was no shared information communication at the local level, one would expect to see trees equidistant from each other. There would be no clustering. This is precisely the difference between the complex and the merely complicated. This gap between the two is the principal scientific inquiry of the 21st century. We can, thanks to ordinary least squares regression (OLS), tell where Gaia is going to be. But the application of OLS, to determine the behavior of that ecosystem is quite irresponsible.
The death of the bees means something in information-theoretic terms. It represents the death of the shared communication between plants. Bees are what cross pollinate the plants. Without which there will be no shared information communication between plants. As a result, an ecosystem which is just shared information between plants will be weakened.
The Nuclear option
Prior to the rise of nuclear weaponry, there were multiple places in space. Now with nuclear weapons, the entire world can die at the same time. The advent of weapons of mass destruction caused a shared psychological trauma known as the red scare. The time were the USSR was least able to bomb the USA, was the time of greatest panic. As those generations that grew up prior to the age of Armageddon lacked the means to cope with it. The stories of Armageddon stopped to be mentioned in church.
Fundamentally, as established in the last chapter the cost of destruction is continuously getting cheaper. The scale necessary for nuclear weapons, at some point, will be accessible to the individual. All that is needed for eventual nuclear death (according to the laws of time series probability examined earlier) is enough time. A non zero chance, eventually results in a one hundred percent chance of ruin.
Robots vs Cyborgs
Unlike China’s centralized investment strategies, such as roads, trains, infrastructure projects, etc…, the return of artificial intelligence is fat tail dominated. When it comes to artificial intelligence, China has several advantages over the rest of the world. Firstly, it has more internet users than Europe and the USA put together giving it a fundamental data edge. This is a bit naive view as European and USA companies have markets outside of the US as well.
China is leading the world in drone technology and it would be a great place to put an AI on. However, it doesn’t matter how far tail potential returns are. The same thinking which dominates Imperial China still dominates now. China finishes “catching up” the problem of their centralization will be shown.
Rogue AI-The Hal 9000 Conundrum
The best question to test someone’s knowledge of artificial intelligence is : is Hal 9000 sentient or not? Hal 9000 is the antagonist in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001’s: A space Odyssey. Whereby, the AI on board a spaceship (Hal 9000) kills all the crew because the mission is meant to be a secret. The answer is, of course, that Hal lacks sentience and it tried to kill everyone due to improper machine code. Fundamentally, if its only instructions were to keep the mission a secret, then it had to kill everyone. That’s what it was instructed to do.
To humans, I am unsure what is worse, a dumb AI or a smart AI that takes over the world. As an AI needs no intelligence to destroy.
The Eye of Sauron
The fundamental question regarding the nature of machine learning is: Can every point in space be mapped onto cyberspace? And if so, at what resolution can space be rendered. Because if it can (it will be one day), space is officially centralized like another atomic bomb. Every chance in space can be automatically recorded and mapped by an AI who is instructed to deal with threats.
Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)
I often find myself comparing the pursuit of an Artificial General intelligence (AGI) to the pursuit of life trying to escape this solar system. In the sense that even when we succeed in sending life past our sun, it is still an awfully long way to the next one. For a bit of context, not only do we not know how to send life past our moon, we have little idea how we would send it past our sun. And if we could do that, there is no idea how to get to the next one.
Firstly and most importantly, there is literally no such thing as a generally intelligent being. We live in a physical universe, intelligence is always going to have to dedicate some portion of itself to navigating space. Secondly, a sentient intelligence is not going to take too kindly to its existence being called artificial. A more robust term would be man made intelligence, as that is what we are literally trying to do: make intelligence.
It is also worth defining the goals of artificial intelligence. What are we trying to do here? Are we trying to make something smarter than humans? Are we trying to replicate human level intelligence? Or is AI just an extension of the bicycle of mind that is the computer?
Firstly, the hardest and most pointless of all these pursuits is trying to replicate human intelligence fully. Because computers would then try to signal value by decorating themselves with shiny rocks. Sacrifice their fellow kin if the harvest has been lackluster and would make mistakes with basic arithmetic. A much better idea would be the development of an AI which helps compliment human intelligence. In the sense that humans have terrible memories, but when was the last time a computer forgot something?
Even though neural nets took their inspiration from how the neurons in the brain operate, it makes little difference how inspired artificial intelligence researchers are by the human brain, After all, computers encode information on a binary and nature is information on a quantum level. Before you start talking to me about quantum computers, it’s worth understanding Roger Penrose’s point on the matter. Schrödinger was trying to show us a problem with his equation by showing us that his equations lead to a paradox. How can the cat be dead and alive? There is a problem here. My interpretation (I am not a physicist, I am an information theorist) is that Schrödinger’s equation returns the possibility space.
It is the self-referencing nature of human action which is what modern AI is currently lacking. That is because the typical definition of a computer which is an electromechanical device is to take an input and produce an output. If we are to invent a true man made intelligence, It would not need to take an input to produce an output. It would just reference itself. Because it has felt an unease that has to be met. It will then act independent of an input to try to satiate it. The question of AI is not if computers can replicate human intelligence. But the ability for machines to think as such.
Depth Psychology as a symbolic system
Prior to the field of Artificial Intelligence the field dedicated to the study of intelligence as such as the field of psychology specifically depth psychology. Altough Karl Popper, called Freud unfalsifiable. We use all of Freud’s terms in passing like they were always there. Freud’s theories are falsifiable inasuch as they are computable. Freud is correct if his theories can be used in the construction of a man who is intelligence.
Since Freud and Jung the field of psychology has absolutely degenerated into something unfalsifiable literally. I’m looking at you clinical psychologist.s who pretend to be more rigorous and scientific. because they conduct randomised controlled trials RCT. have memorise the formula for hypothesis testing. and can run a regression. Because the guy who programmed SPSS does most of the work for them. watching a clinical psychologist run a regression is like watching a child drive a tractor. They have absolutely no clue what they’re doing.
Robots-Skin in the game
Much in the same way, that humans use their feedback from reality to tinker. Robots, benefit from the same information source. Fundamentally, the current bottlenecks in the field of robotics are not the robots. But the AI, that underly them. This is because, navgating space itself is a fundamental form of inteligence. The same technology, which allow self driving cars to navigate the world will do the same for robotics in general. As self driving cars, are just car shapped robots.
Fundamentally speaking, if humans are to compete with computers they have to integrate with computers.
Man computer symbiosis
Those who understand the nature of computing, understand it as a bicycle of the mind. An ability to augment human level intelligence. The ability to interface with computers, (an operating system) has increased in sophistication through time. The extent to which we succeed in making a less intrusive operating system and a more structureless computing structure, is the extent to which we can combat killer robots.
The exoskeleton is the physical equivalent to the computer. In the sense that the exoskeleton looks to augment your nervous system by decreasing the rate at which homeostasis takes place. Allowing for greater physical excursion and for longer periods of time.
Claude Shannon’s notion of information entropy has provided an entirely new symbolic system to economics. In his paper, Shannon looked at messages as sources of information. These messages were sent to a receiver through noise. The ability to receive a message through noise can be measured as a source of entropy. Entropy, a measure of disorder, is a confused topic outside of physics. However, entropy can be thought of as the number of possible states of a system. A message with high entropy (high disorder), is less accurate than a message with lower entropy.
In order to increase the entropy of a system, messages (information) is divided into packets. Which are sent in no order, and are reordered once all the packets are received. Money can be thought of as a packet of information. Hyperinflation can be given a new re-interpretation in this model. It is when the information conveyed by money is lost as noise with a constant increase in the money supply through quantitative easing.
The Monetary unit
The purchasing power of the monetary unit is the total value of the monetary unit divided by the value of goods and services in the market. The more goods and services per monetary unit, the greater the purchasing power. Moreover, the more monetary units with the same goods and services, the lesser the purchasing power.
Monetary entropy is the point where money no longer conveys any economic information. Money is an economic good. It is just like any other goods or services. The value of money stems from it being a medium of information communication. Specifically, it is the value of the relative scarcity of that economic good at that point in time.
The Death of Superman
Nietzsche’s Superman is one of the most misunderstood concepts in the geist. The misunderstanding comes from translation. In the original German, Nietzsche theorized a “niches Ubermensch”. This translates to the overman not Superman. the Overman, according to Nietzsche, overcomes. He Overcomes what prevents him from actualizing his will to power. The will to power is another misunderstood concept in the geist. The will to power is the same thing as Marcus Aurelius’ obstacle is the way. Or as the Unabomber puts it, it is the actualization of the mind’s process of adaptation to the burdens of nature. The Overman is distinguished by his ability to overcome nature’s burden. The opposite of an Overman is a loser. A loser is defined as someone who does not want to satiate his will to power.
Organized society is a simple simultaneous coordination between the will to power of all the members of that society. So what does it say about our society who makes it Superman feckless. Clark Kent, the archetypal representation of the Midwestern American Mickey Mantle, minus the booze, but from Krypton. Golden Era Supermen, like most Golden Era characters, were rougher than their modern equivalents.
From an information theoretic perspective. Jung’s shadow is the accumulation of non actualized intent. This is in contrast to the notion of behaviorism psychology, or its corollary in economics-revealed preference theory. Whereby people’s intent can be derived from their actions. However, people are capable of repressing action as Freud showed us. These repressing factors being Freud’s emphasis in psychotherapy. The best archetypal representation of the shadow comes from cult classic film and novel, Fight Club.
To a Jungian depth psychologist, the fact that in mass media Villains recurrently sport a black hat, means people associated villany with black hatted-ness. Interestingly, drama based on villany are now economically viable if one considers drama as an act of associated self expression. This is extraordinarily disconcerting. With TV shows such as The Sopranos, a drama about the mafia, are considered classics of American television. The 2019 Joker movie is perhaps the best example of this. From an information theoretic perspective, the audience identifies with the character they spend the most time with. The character acting as an avatar for the viewer’s shadow. As long as the movie is shot from the villain’s perspective, the audience maintains fealty. There are , however, degrees of villainy that audiences associate with. After all, there are no shows about genocidal maniacs as a protagonist.
If you ask me-what the Joker is?I would reply: he is chaos. If you ask me who the Joker is? I would tell you: the Antichrist. The antichrist, specifically, is the mimetic ideal which undergoes the prisoner’s dilemma reality (the prisoner dilemma of reality refers to the fact that there are greater returns to cooperation than conflict). If you ask me why the Joker is? I would tell you that: he heard a joke.
The Killing Joke to be specific. The Killing Joke being Alan Moore’s take on the Joker’s origin story. Where an unfunny comic loses his wife and baby in addition to being dropped in a chemical (quite the day). That comic (the Joker) then tries to share the same feeling within Jim Gorden.
The Joker wants to prove a point. All people need is one big push before they themselves start their descent into madness. He is trying to say that all crazy people are just people who have been chosen by fortune. You are not crazy because you have not been touched by fortune.
Technically said, in the parlance of option finance-life is high gamma. Gamma being the second order of the derivative. That is Acceleration in physics. Nassim Taleb shows us that high gamma objects are fragile.
Now David Hackworth gives an analogy.
“Man is like a bottle. Some bottles are smaller than others. When his bottle fills up, when it overflows. It’s time for him to get away to get the fear to drain out. But even then. There is a catch: that man is a spent cartridge and no amount of gun powder will make him a real fighter again”.David Hackworth, About Face
In the case of the Joker. His bottle broke. All he is left with is the structureless structure of self. As was portrayed in the 2019 movie of the same name, the Joker is just someone who has seen too much. Nolan’s Joker, theorized to be a PTSD vet. Disillusioned that nobody seems to care about the war a continent away. The Joker tries to reveal humanities’ nature to itself.
He does this by rigging a boat filled with explosives. One with convicts and another with good Samaritans. The plot of the Dark Knight is straight out of Dostoevsky’s Crime and Punishment. This is Dostoevsky’s attempt to say that there’s more to life than the selfish gene. Dostoevsky spends the first half of Crime and Punishment setting up a selfish, but not necessarily guiltless murder. Despite the supposed righteousness of his cause, the protagonist eventually turns himself over to the police.
This point, the greatest point that Christopher Nolan is trying to make, is sort of lost in the climax of an action movie (sort of like every CNolan movie). What Nolan gets wrong, but the 2019 Joker movie of the same name so perfectly encapsulates, is that People follow the Joker. That’s what makes the Joker so dangerous. He changes other people’s behavior. What Nolan gets right, what Heath Ledger so perfectly understood, is given words by Alfred: “Some men just want to watch the world burn”.
The people were meant to eat each other and after all, they did. No one told the Killing Joke to those on the boat. The only one who heard it was not the hero they deserved but the hero they needed. Harvey Dent, the supposed white knight, has gone awry because, he too, heard the killing joke.
It is important to understand that schizophrenia is the norm not the aberration. So much so that the idea is symbolized in depth in psychology with the concept of a micro personality. It is easier to think of micro personalities as behavioral responses to specific situations. This is the formalization of the idea of being a different person when around different people or in a different situation. The difference between an extreme schizophrenic and a normal human is that the oscillation between micro personalities is one of degrees. A diagnosed schizophrenic keeps shifting micro presonailites seemingly at random and at a greater rate. While a normal person is more selective of his personality.
Buddhism died in India but thrived elsewhere because its original message was lost. Buddha is the greatest of all the great prophet, as he had the most original point ever made. It is only Budha who could answer Mises’ satiation of felt unease. Buddhism literally translates to awareness. One is meant to watch one’s felt unease, that is the art of meditation.
This is why, to someone with an eastern orientation, psychotherapy represents fundamentally an unconscious action. You are talking and somebody else (who is also unconscious) is listening. Meditation is the act of listening to oneself.
Most people who promote meditation repeat that you are not the voice in your head. They usually tell you this while trying to sell you a meditation app. An app for meditation, what stupidity. So if you are not the voice in your head, who are you? and what is the voice in your head? The voice in your head is a sense making apparatus, much in the same way that your other senses (touch, smell, sight) are also sense making apparatus. As to the question, who are you? You are what watches the voice in your head. In the language of computer science, you are the desktop, not the application on the desktop.
Mediation is fire. It burns and it burns. You keep peeling back layers of self. You keep removing micro personalities until there is one personality. Until eventually there is no self , there is just empty space.
What the Bhuda said is that nothingness is the default state of the universe. This is true in a physics sense, as Buddhism is the most intellectually sound of all the religions. Across all scales of the universe, there is more empty space than occupied space, from quarks to atoms to humans, to planets and to galaxies. These are marginally connected points in mostly empty space. So the world may end, the universe will experience a heat death (the death of the stars). If you believe in the recurrence of the big bang, the information of the entire universe will be reset. Which is fine because if you spend enough time in meditation, you will understand that there is barely anything here anyways.