Welcome to my little piece of cyberspace. Come in, stay a while ,have a cup of java or contribute your own ideas ,or donate or whatever suits you. You are free here, what is mine is yours and yours is mine. We are to one another incomprehensible in our full depth, your inner universe is your's and your's alone, for now.
Life has changed much in the last few months. I quit my job and started life as a PhD Student in North West Arkansas. I am studying materials science, specifically the design and optimization of high temperature microheaters. They have some fascinating properties, such as breaking the black body radiation law, and allowing for conduction by phonon tunneling over distances greater than 10 micro meters. The lab, AM^3 that I find myself working in is a cordial envrionment full of fascinating characters doing valuable work. My advisor, Dr. Zhou is a fine fellow, with a good sense of humour and much interest in exploration and commercialization. Fortunately, our interests and styles coincide well, so we get along. He supports my growth as a scientist but also as an entrepreneur and I appreciate that immensely. In the mean time, my partner and I have been getting on well. The NWA region is in the Ozark Mountains and so offers great weather and lots of outdoor beauty to share and explore. All in all, I feel I am rising to become who it is I want to be, even if that person is not exactly as younger me expected all those years ago. Also, in regards to my last post, the microheater technology I am working on could very well lead to additive manufacturing with atomic and eventually nuclear precision. Heat, you see, has no diffraction limit, and can be arbitrarily focused...in fact, super plankian devices are being developed and explored only as of the last year for their effects in the far field. Such devices indicate a radiative power transfer greater than unity when the size of the emitter is much smaller than the wavelength of emitted light, indicating that energy transfer with almost arbitrary incident energy fluence between a sub wavelength emitter and reciever could make a powerful method of atomic manipulation. A method which my microheaters serve as a first step toward, and indeed could enable very soon. I am deeply excited by this possibility and everything else happening right now.... I am so happy to be where I am, with who I am, and doing what I am doing. It is hard to describe just how good I am feeling right now.
One imagines programmable nucleons and femto-technology as the logical extension of todays still infantile nano-technology. Consider the possibilities of programming the behavior of individual quantum disturbances within the nucleus, such as the position, spin and momentum of gluons, or the overall resonance states of neutrons. If such programmability is possible, perhaps atomic scale machines could be created capable of performing matter manipulation at the scale of single nuclei, altering the species of atom, its bond structure internally, and its electronic structure at the same time, all the interest of collective atomic construction or production of otherwise impossible nuclear molecules and Femtomatter. Materials whose properties are determined by the strong and weak forces and are only supplemented by the electronic propensities. Such atomic machines could create otherwise impossible geometries and behaviors. Perhaps the synthetic production of antimatter and strange matter and other forms of exotic materials usually synthesized in the hearts of dieing stars? I can only guess at this point, but the possibility is none the less exciting.
Having spent some months learning what I do not want to do for 40 years, I finally determined my prime directives. They are in order, -Self as an Scientist -Self as an Entrepreneur -Self as a Lover Through the co-construction of this triage of features I believe I can achieve the self I have always desired. The precise balance is becoming more clear as I seek to begin the next chapter in my life. My major interests are as always, -Life Extension -Space Travel I believe I finally understand the value of graduate education, and I believe I am mature enough to carry myself through a complete PhD. Having seen the paths of similar such people who did their PhD and developed businesses from their research, I believe I have valid role models to folow that will make excellent examples in future.
Another wild thought, for rocket propulsion,
CONTENT WARNING THE FOLLOWING IS A LONG RAMBLING EXPOSITION ABOUT ALL THAT HAS HAPPENED IN THE LAST 5 MONTHS.::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::;::::::::::::::::::::;; For starters, I picked up and started traveling again, after helping my old robotics team go to world championships for the first time. The parting was thoroughly painful, after such an incredible fullfillemnt of our long time dream. Alas, the hunger drives me onward, to new places and to new opportunities, feeling many of the youthful desires of my past fullfilled. I wandered on, through the state of Texas, and westward to nevada and Davis California, interviewing at various places along the way, and filling my life with new experiences. Koniku, Nectome, SGPS showrigs, Barns Reverse Engineering, Clayton Semiconductor, among others, and of course the fascinating people one encounters by chance on the road. Eventually the call came once more from the east, this time from Martin Sprocket and Gear in Atlanta Georgia; looking for a design engineer for their materials handling systems(mostly archimedes screws) and large power transmission components(big gears and sprockets). I, feeling the hunger strongly again, agreed perhaps too hastily to travel cross country for another new experience and a shot at building the foundations of my future.
Atlanta is perhaps one of the most diverse and organic cities I have ever had the pleasure to experience. Its a labrynthine construction of pavement, concrete and historical buildings crisscrossed with a capillary vasculature of rail lines and side streets with no apparent logical order to their names or positions. Every trail and road winds in seemingly random directions, only sticking to the cardinal positions loosely.Apparently the road systems were built around old indian trails. Atlanta, like the people in it, is an ecclectic and unusual mix of old and new, well planned city scape, and randomly constructed housing project, often one finds suburban cloisters filled with old growth forest immediately next to large urban sky scapes and sprawling shopping complexes. Oddly fitting is the changeling nature of the people here. Nearly a 3rd of the populace is apparently of the LGBTQ metatype and more broadly the city is majority african american, making for a intense mix of sociopolitical tension and segmentation of neighborhoods into distinct cultural sectors. For the most part, I have found the environment relaxing and amenable. Free parking abounds and public amenities, including trash, water and shower access have been easy to come by. Also lovely is the intense and diverse cycling culture here, the abundance of forrested trails throughout the city and practically ubiquitous side walk infrastructure make cycling or walking atlanta possible and quite convenient, if still quite challenging due to the large geographic area of the city, and pitchy, hilly, sub mountainous geography. The public transit system is passable for centrally located destinations, but bus rides are filled with stops and often take loger than walking to get to places far from the main train and transit lines.
On the topic of random encounters, I have met up and integrated with the local alcorians and transhumanists here in Atlanta, and found them to be a fine bunch of folks. Each unique and kind in their own way and all deeply ingrained in hacker culture. Equally interesting are the few individuals I have encountered roaming the streets and obscure knooks and crannies around the city. One, by the name of Dylan, is a tall fellow, approximately 6 feet in height, with the body of a rock climber who lives in a primitive shelter in the old growth forest just north of the city. He has a few identifying artifacts, 1) a small hand made hide bound notebook filled with physics equations, occult symbols, fractal geometries he has drawn and the rudiments of a language he is dedicating his life to creating, one that combines, color, the cardinal directions, astrology, alchemical ideals, the cardinal sins, personality traits, laws of motion, higher mathmatics and jungian psychology into a universal language able to describe anything completely and objectively, to anyone as well as predict future outcomes and coordinated behavioral patterns of environment and individual. Needless to say, I have my doubts, but he certainly seems to believe its possible. He is a completely coherent and quite intelligent individual to speak to, but as one talks longer with him and drills more into his character the somewhat surreal details, such as his magnum opus, begin to emerge. Artifact 2) is a phany pack filled with extra underwear, home made squirrel jerky, and writing and cutting implements of various descriptions. I wish this wonderous dweller of the forests the best in his endeavors, and find him a fascinating character worth aiding in the fields of higher mathmatics and physics as I am able, whenever our paths cross again. Stars aligning or whatever, may the moon guide your path blah blah blah woo woo.
In other news, I have chanced across the local theosophist society, claimed occultists, and alchemists and the modern day children of israel, all unsual interest groups to say the least. Being the egoist I am, I indulge their fancies to find out more about what drives them and how they have come to believe in the reality models they do. I remain unconvinced of their cases but sympathize with their need to synthesize a common source of meaning. Regardless, their madness is delicious sustenance to the ravenous void of my mind, my creative nothingness enjoys their ruminations greatly, in spite of the heavy flavor of madness and denial. Listening to their stories give some insane inspiration for areas of study in my scientific pursuits, after all, magic is merely poorly understood science. Perhaps more practically speaking, I have encountered some exceptional fellow scientists in my wanderings, Jennifer Curtis of the Curtis Group Cell Physics laboratory, a kindly, if short spoken, young Doctor, active in her studies of cellular adhesion and adaptive structural proteins in human biology. Additionally, a Mathmatician working in advanced combinatorics of the art gallery gauard distribution problem, named Elliot. He was not only brilliant, but a wonderful conversationalist, clearly the math of human interaction was in his thesis as well :). He gave me excellent advice for seeking graduate programs, that I should thoroughly evaluate my potential advisor(s) and be sure to find someone that cares more for my development as a person than the growth of their career that might result from my entering their lab. One, when seeking to enter the upper levels of acdemia should be relatively unconcerned with the prestige and fame of their chosen advisors, but more with their human elements, emphasizing the mentor and, almost secondary parental aspects of the advisor student relationship. This of course, reminds me of the kindly vankleys, a family of russians with whom i spent 2 years in undergrad. The mother of the family, a geneticist and cellular biologist was a wonderful peson, and a very good scientist and I believe would have made an excellent research advisor if i had chosen to stick around east texas. Alas, the opportunity remains, but I realize now what I might have had. Still, walking away with lifelong friends is a good second in my book.
On the more personal side, spending time with the young couples and older folks in the avondale area has been informative and enlightening as to the qualities of couples life that often produce undue pressures between lovers and break the old bonds through which the lovers might have met in the first place. Of course, as much is not true in every case and i have still managed to befriend a few worthwhile folks who are more outgoing as couples. Israel and Chrysa for two, and Beverely and Andria. Israel and chrysa being a BEAUTIFUL couple, each of them kind and intelligent in their own way, and of course physically modelesque. They have become comfortably wealthy early in life through real estate, and have an adorable child, no doubt of excellent genetic stock, named penelope, a young toddler with a knowing gaze and a quiet demeanor generally. They have strong business backgrounds and a will to build a brighter future, for themselves and for others, I suspect that will be working together on something or other very soon. As for Beverely and her wife Andria, they are a well to do couple who are outgoing and kind and filled with a desire to help young folks find their start when they can. In an entirely chance encounter with them, I got to know their interests in building a more inclusive youth culture, a broader societal understanding of LGBTQ and a more inclusive and domestic society over all, as well as their connections to high eschelons of a certain pharmaceutical and medical device company. My background building brain implants seems to have caught their attention and she practically demanded that I stop working where I am now and become a part of their internal emerging neural devices research division. An exciting development for sure, but we shall see where it leads as time goes on. If i have learned anything, it is that the magic of chance encounters works best in meidum sized groups and extended periods of time. Randomly, I experienced my first roller derby, with a welder on my shop team named Doug and his wife Katie. Doug likes drawing possums in various settings where people would otherwise be, and is an excellent welder with a penchant for personal health and safety. His politics are quite blue, and he is a male feminist, so we have certain tensions, but get along well enough. He and his wife and friends are of hardy stock and have proven much more accepting than I would perhaps have expected, though their demeanor is generally quiet and reserved. I am glad to have made their acquaintance.
Even more personally is the swelling love interest in my life. They have ignited something deep inside me that I had thought I strangled some years ago. Alas, life finds a way.Or perhaps I have engineered a way and discovered someone who meets or exceeds the requirements of a lifetime partner... It turns out, having someone who is a close friend, perhaps a best friend and also willing to go the extra mile to become lovers is an easy and organic transition that comes with many benefits. Built in sense of commitment being only one of many, a mutual understanding and interests that align. Honesty and familiarity allowing for clear and explicit communication even with sensitive topics or those we may not agree on, and of course a shared vision of the future all add to the quality of the realtionship. More pragmatically, our common financial tendencies and preference for personal strength and continued growth on an independant basis make us a strong duo that adds to one another 100% to 100% instead of just 50 50. Together we may truly be able to achieve our super villainous desires. On earth and out into the wider cosmos in time... Regardless, I am glad to have a person for whom I can care deeply, and who in turn cares deeply for me in a more wholistic sense. I suppose the human part of me is stronger than I thought, or perhaps we are two ravenous monstrosities finding a safe haven within one another, like two black holes devouring each other, or two windigos feeding on one another eternally regenerating emaciated flesh...lol
In business, I have acquired a provisional patent on my new clipless pedal design and started a new website for marketing and updates on progress, www.Surefootpedals.com. Additionally, I am working a toy based on the open worm brain and developing a cast concrete affordable housing business with a new partner named kenneth. So all in all things are progressing rapedaly. I intend to become a billionaire mogul, one pedalling pedals one pedal at a time if I must. Though at the moment I have some tentative agreements from local bike shop owners to carry my inventory when the prototypes are finished and beta tested. If I can demonstrate consumer interest, they will buy bulk orders and carry my product on their shelves. EXCITING. Perhaps i can make a small but real change in the world after all... :D
PHEW that was a lot of writing with poor grammar and no real direction, I will try to keep up a more regular schedule here on out, but sometimes i just get wrapped up in living that i forget to visit the internet again. lol Thanks for listening you guys, and hope you all are having a good time in your adventures too!
Radio silence gives way to a convergence of activity, a crossroads buit from rays of sunshine. Something is happening, but I ask how, somethings are going, and I ask now? My utter inability to predict the course of future, and the optimality of my choices weighs on my mind, but grows lighter as I grow stronger. By choosing of my own course, in my own way, I can perhaps be sure I own the decisions I make, and perhaps take ownership of the outcomes as well. Haivng ridden my first Century on the bike, my sense of challenge has risen, and my mental fortitude increased. Certainly, the symbiosis of man and machine, in perhaps a more primitive form, has given way to growth in the man, in mind and in body. I believe know what I want, but not yet how to get it. Perhaps time and practice will grant me the wisdom I crave, I cannot say for now.
As a new year dawns, I am once more searching for enriching work. As my contract with Paradromics ends, I find myself returning to familiar territory in east texas, and taking up watch and clock making to keep myself occupied and fed in the interim as I search for another in to engineering and science. I find my interest in cycling expaanding to the wider field of human powered vehicles at large, my appreciation for the human body, and indeed for bicycles and what can be achieved with basic engineering principles well applied has grown tremendously. I only hope it does not become all consuming.
A great deal has happened in the 6 months since my last bit of writing here... I have written a bit of slice of life in the third person. Perhaps I will continue this trend in time, to fill out a complete third person account of my life, present and future. My writing skills are only so so, I hope to improve them with further practice in this style, and to write strange fiction and sci-fi into my slice of life over time.
-VRRRRROOOOOOSHHHH- mildly encrusted eyes flutter open at the sound of a passing car. A skinny figure rustles inside a black modular sleeping bag suspended above the floor in a colorful hammock, rocking to and fro in the wake of the car. A sigh can be heard as a cloud of moistened breath billows out into the cool, dark, cave like atmosphere of the van. An arm slithers out of the small face hole of the sleeping bag deftly groping for a heater switch at arms length. ‘Click’ the hand hits the switch and a soft orange glow illuminates the interior and simultaneously casts jagged shadows across the arching walls, releasing a soft whirr of activity from the small heater.
30 minutes pass until suddenly, the sleeping bag splits open like an egg sac, or maybe a banana, birthing the awakened man inside. He folds his legs over the edge of the hammock and plants both feet and a hand on the wooden floor beside. As he lifts out of the hammock, practically rolling into a crawling position, he stands up on his knees and takes a look at the small metal bar labeled “Nokia”. A bright white glow illuminates his face, young features, male, white, dark brown almost black eyes, all topped by short unkempt hair. The numbers on the nokia tell the time to be 8:30 AM on the morning of December 2nd 2018. A thumb holds a button, the nokia responds with a soft click and a bright white LED illuminates on the back, filling the room with a sharp yellow tinged glow.
The morning circuit begins, as the man rummages through his various bins looking for the days clothing, suitable to the chill outside, and of course, brushing his teeth, scrubbing his crevices and orifices, and cleaning his various surfaces always hunching, crouching, or kneeling under the short 4 foot roof of his abode. A thermometer in the corner, points silently to the number 60, the goosebumps across his body tell another story however, as the man changes from warm hunting thermals, to jeans, wool socks, boots, two long sleeve shirts, quilted vest and a gray fleece hoody. A look in the crooked mirror confirms it, he has transformed into the spitting image of a garden variety city dweller, a proper gray man, suited to blending in with concrete sidewalks, sheer office walls and thronging humans with their winter coats. Menacing in his banality, and uncannily mundane, he is ready to take on the chill Baltimore morning.
Exciting Developments! Commercial interest in the Twisted Coiled Polymer Actuators has occured! A company called Interfacial group has made first contact with our research group and is currently instigating talks for NDA and possible intellectual property liscnesing agreements! HUZZAH, my initial suspicions were correct all along, I guessed that these devices would be very attractive to commecial partners and industry and I was right! I am INORDINATELY EXCITED! Moreover, the twisting appratus and extruder have been completed on schedule and should be ready to begin prototype production in a week or two, this puts us on track to proof of concept and liscensing within a few months assuming no unexpected holdups occur(of which there are many possible).
In other news, I have entered into a partnership with a good friend of mine, Nikolai, to begin cataloging. researching and preserving all of the historical pieces of innovation and technology in his sizable personal collection. The Museum of Human Innovation will be a display and collection of the various steps in human innovation witnessed in the last 500 years or so. Each piece of the collection will be accompanied by well researched articles on the details of the production, use, development, distribution and success or failure of each respective piece of innovation. We want to keep the history of technology and of the evolution of the human species as intact as possible for future generations of like minded explorers and preservationists to enjoy and appreciate at their leisure. A subscription fund has been setup, 80 cents of every dollar of subscription income goes to building and maintaining the collection, and to a trust that will eventually grow to fund a physical space for the collection and to counterbalance the amortized costs over time of the collection in the coming decades. Check us out if you have an appreciation for the past, technological or otherwise!
I will be beginning a masters program in biotechnology shortly. I believe an enhanced understanding of nuclear reprogramming through bioinformatic assays and biorobotics will improve my ability to carry out my respawn protocol. I may be able to improve yields and efficiencies of the SCNT process over all to generally reduce the resource and time cost of producing viable embryos. Additionally biotechnology is a highly applied field which can improve my employability if I choose that path in the future. The research will also provide excellent opportunity to improve my coding skills and to continue working on the twisted coiled polymer actuator research, thus improving my ability to produce a spinoff company from that work if/when it bears fruit. I should say my life has become more exciting to me than the games I used to spend much time playing; I am not sure I have ever been this comfortable in my own skin. Let the adventure begin!
Does anyone really have the answers? Who we are, what we are, who we want to be...are they even questions we should ask? How does one know when one loses oneself? Is it something that just happens? I cant say. To calm the seas and lose the fire that has defined my life thus far, or to remain boiling with a certain degree of feral madness. I am human, but more, myself, but more, nothing, but more. I contain everything and yet am empty, a creative nothing...A stroke of lighting in a suit of flesh, a embryonic god, a dieing animal, a restrained beast, a human being, a self, a collection of cells, a blob of assorted atoms, a matter wave, all in all, one in all and all in one. These are what I am and yet cannot and do not fully describe me, do not contain me, as I exist outside the world of words and concepts, beyond their power. How can I possibly begin to understand something I cannot even describe. If I cannot name it, how can I speak of it? reason about it? I dont know, but I want to...I have come to see my life as a long string of opportunities to become who I am, to better know myself. Through the language of experience I create myself moment by moment, in time perhaps, I will create my own answers.
Team Atemstrahlung is doing well. We competed in the Toronto Hult Prize Regional a few days ago and made it to the final rounds with a strong support for the wild card application. Things are looking up in spite of not winning at the regional. Our business is taking shape and we learned more in two days at the regional than we did in months at college lol. Funny how much difference atmosphere and the people you surround yourself with makes in one's ability to learn new things. I suppose it really is true, that the people you spend time with are who you tend to become. I reckon that should be obvious by now. In any case, my excitement is boiling, I am in the middle of further market research to improve our business plan and turn our work into a living breathing business that can grow to close the global energy gap permanently! This will be my first encounter with a truly hard global problem, my first real monster encounter of sorts. Here goes nothing! I am no protagonist, but plot armor is for schmucks.
Opportunity is a fickle thing, it comes and goes, ebbs and flows, one must always be on the lookout for sudden turns. Of course, opportunity has many forms as well, to watch it too closely and try to predict it precisely is like knowing the position and momentum of an electron to perfect accuracy simultaneously, h/2 always stands in the way. I have become far more aware of how much I do not know, and how much I must learn, perhaps, in time, I may master my powers of mind and body to become one of the few. One of those that, while still human, through trial and efffort and time, in the crucible of life, have become more than human, transcending human boundaries in the interest of greater power and greater self discovery. Perhaps in mastering myself, I will have built a foundation to mastering the universe...
Once upon the cryonic mourn, a figure trundles verily, greatcoat billowed, flourishing in red and grey. Steaming breath meets frigid wind, carrying vital warmth into the sky. Earth underfoot, dark and quiet, shivers neath' the blizzard cold. Vesuvian snow like white soot flickers down to the shivering ground. Figure slips and catches self, sighs in great relief, just as it stands against the snow. A monster bold in skin of man, more than; and less, to say the least. Palid face and cold skin, enshroud the heart, seperating the ice without from that within. All is quiet unto the grave, in silence rest and silence rave, like snow we fall to melt on the earth; in spite all our best of merry and mirth. Into box and finally worms are destined we to our soiled dirth. -Michael Lynn
Nostalgia for what might have been is a strange sensation, one I have often felt. The chance to take up the labors of my father and carry on the family business has oft weighed on my mind. I seek to greater ambitions, but for what purpose? why take the longer harder road if the same outcome can be achieved with greater efficiency? Of course, how could younger me have known the difference...If I had taken up the family business, I might never have become what I am today. One ought not dwell on the lost opportunities and missing memories of the past; right now, all I feel I can do is move forward and make the most of what I can create, the most of my power, the most of my intercourse.
Some further developments on the respawn concept elucidated on October 25th of 2017.
My team and I won the Hult Prize local competition for our university! A most exciting development! While it does not mean that we will be recieving seed funding for our venture just yet, it does mean that our travel costs will be funded by the university so we can compete in the next round of the competition! This could prove to be a defining moment in my adventure; Regardless of our ultimate success in the competition, it will be an excellent learning opportunity.Here is to the future, brighter than ever before and still worth seeking with increasing vigor.
In the interest of founding a stateless society in the near future, (10-20 years) I have been examining the cost of purchasing and operating a Cargo Container Ship. I examined the cost of converting the ship to being fully electric and building it out to support a larger population in addition to supporting substantial scientific and industrial systems. A dedicated cloning and biological experimentation section, a dedicated robotics and cybernetics section, a integrated food production and recycling facilty, the cost of batteries and solar systems for energy generation and storage. I have been making a detailed plan for acquisition, and a full list of modifications and support systems required to sustain my stateless society built on steel indefinitely. In the no man's land of international waters, I and my compatriots would be free to explore and learn the techniques of science and technology that most modern nations are etiher unable or unwilling to support. Seeking transcendence to a posthuman state, no holds will be barred.
Sometimes I do not know what to do. I know what I want, but not yet fully how to get it. It is tortuous being fully aware of what you seek yet unable to fully grasp the object of your desires. It seems no matter which direction I travel in, I find rocks blocking the path, more boulders to roll uphill eternally. I have been writing a book on my plans, and philosophy. It combines elements of egoism, transhumanism, anarchism, futurism, entrepaneruship, absurdism, and nihilism into one oozing conglomeration; whether abomination or masterpiece I can hardly say. I will be publishing parts of it here in my journal entries and eventually a complete compendium on this website and perhaps elsewhere as a PDF or other format.
In other news, I learned about Numenta a machine intelligence research company interested in reverse engineering the brain to yield more effective artificial intelligence. Their mission speaks to me, in the same way PROME's does. I am of the mind that reverse engineering biology is the most expedient way to gaining control of biological systems and being able to emulate their effects in silicon. The HTM and Sparse distrbibuted representation paradigms that Numneta focuses on, seem to be well founded and yield interesting results on mutliple benchmarks; of course, their transparency and dedication to fostering a community of exploration is appealing as well. Similarly, Cortical.io seems to have good ideas for using HTM and SDR to tackle natural language processing. With such dedicated talent, I cant imagine the issues standing in the way of true human level or greater AGI standing for long. Of course, I am prone to hyper optimism on this front, so have a grain of salt.
I have decided to take up harmonica and learn to express myself in other media besides mere speech and writing. There exist within me, a multitude of alien sensations I cannot fully express in spoken language. I intend to increasae my bandwidth and provide a humanizing element to my mask, perhaps I will be able to speak more easily with those of musical and artistic dispositions if I have a creative skill of my own to muster. Further, I feel a growing need to express what is inside me, in whatever way I am able; I find that expression of the fascinating things that spring from my depths to the outside world takes strain off my mind and helps me focus clearly on my objective.
I have begun working with PROME. The work I do for them is proprietary, but I intend to contribute to their cause with whatever skill I can offer. Perhaps I will be able to make some new friends, and allies for the zany future that lies ahead. The excitement I am feeling is substantial, and there lies with it a certain sense of uncertainty, of thrilling terror, pushing me to expand my boundaries to take into myself all that I can. Into the vast dark and consuming unknown! FORWARD!
I met and interacted with some very interesting people today. World travelers, cosmopolitans, musicians, postmen, homesteaders, immigrants, scientists, teachers, soldiers and others, so much variety in such a short time and such a small space. Good food, good music and fine friends. I seem to have made connections with the others, but in spite of all their color and variety, their wide array of knowledge and experiences, I find myself feeling nothing. Within me seems a deep void, a vast abyss from which no feelings spring. It may be merely a fluke of perception, but I find myself able only to give the simulation of understanding to others and their experiences. My empathy seems to be only deep enough to convince the other that I understand, to illicit their further ellaboration and presumably a feeling of being listened to. I do truly listen to them, their experiences are interesting, like sparks from a flame, or ripples on the pond, I observe in fascination but feel no deep contact, a feeling of emptiness washes over me as I sit listening and recording what the other has to say, what the other claims to feel. I wish I could say I truly experience understanding of the other's experience, truly know what they mean, to truly know their feeling, but to say so, to claim so would be merely a comforting lie. I hold no ill will towards anyone. Yet I find myself alone even when in good company. Perhaps I am brooding and being "edgy", and I am focusing too much on my internal state, staring too long into the creative nothing of myself, into my own abyss. I suppose only time and further contact will tell. Deeper still I must search, perhaps somewhere in this cold machine of pulsing flesh and subducting bone exists a warmth of feeling and emotion yet to be unmasked.
In other news, I seek the power that many major leaders seem to have. Elon Musk, Donald Trump, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, all of them seem to have the power of building a strong cult of personality that scales well to large numbers of people. Somehow, they can bring others to their dreams and hold their attention and their efforts to the task of constructing their visions so strongly, that armies of engineers and scientinsts move in their wake. I want to know and have that power. It is often called simply, "charisma", but such a term does not begin to encapsulate the full depth of what is going on with these men and their followers. I have been studying them intently in the hopes of reverse engineering what makes their following so strong, their wills so potent. I have yet to find the full force of that will within myself. I have managed small peanuts, but the performance they achieve is still orders of magnitude beyond what I have managed. I must continue my experiments. ONWARD!
I have been designing a automatic muscle twister system for the TCPA research. We got our grant in full force and under full approval from the department last week. I am most excited. I have long enjoyed desinging real things, the act of creation brings me substantial joy. I have also learned more about the process of stem cell differentiation and about recent research into differentiating Oocytes(egg cells) from embryonic stem cell and induced pluripotent stem cells. Research like this and like this are extremely encouraging for those of us not interested in traditional reproductive pathways. When developing a cloning method, intended to bootstrap the next more intelligent biological machine, it is extremely encouraging and convenient to derive all requisite biological reagents from ones own cells. This provides a slow but virtually limitless supply of available reagents, thus allowing one to overcome the relatively low yields of human cloning by simply making more attempts.
I have been digesting quite a bit of cellular molecular biology and optogenetics lately and have begun to formulate a complete plan for reproduction, and bootstrapping of the next, improved version, of Michael. As I am, I am able to improve continuously, but at some point my abilities may become blunted due to the disease I have. The disease of aging that is. To overcome this obstacle to immortality, and to continued imrpovement of myself, I have devised a plan for a system of cloning, optogenetic imprinting, and parentage that should allow my future versions to start life anew, with all my genetic code and epigenetic data as well as my collected life experiences, all without having to split my assets or genetic information with some pseudo-random other person.
I gave a brief APS talk on saturday regarding a new path toward improved robotic systems and cybernetics. TCPA are incredible, I feel like I did my best with this talk, but the time was so short, I just could not give the details I wanted to give and at the same time keep things clear and interesting.
Today I learned that some humans are sensitive about their personal well being. Their physical integrity fundamentally alters their self image and functioning ability.
I will be engaging full monk mode soon. Building a scheduling system for myself to keep things on track and make sure I use my time efficienctly. It is time to move beyond this present stage in my evolution. I have discovered an actionable path to my goal and I will proceed to walk this new found road with pacing strides. Nothing is going to break my stride.
This speaks for itself. A hidden price of convenience. What else are we paying for that we have yet to realize we owe? Does everyone really need a car? Were cars ever even neccessary? What will it take to change our minds? Will self driving cars fix this issue? Who can say. I just think its terribly illogical that a society ignores a price in blood for something as banal as transportation, but throws an absolute fit at the mere mention of testing potentially life saving medical or scientific interventions on small subsets of people. Collective action is arguably a worse master than kings were. We never succeeded in throwing off the chains of government, we merely made it harder to throw off, harder to comprehend, and ultimately, harder to operate. Representative? of who? free? for who? questons, questions, questions. Answers I have none.
This got me thinking about what it means to be human. To the tune of Blind trust. Cavil, in spite of his genocidal tendencies and other character flaws, is a sympathetic character to me. I share his desire to know more, to feel more, to be more! I too feel trapped, confined only to expand myself within boundaries. The absurdity of the situation is only enhanced by the knowledge that I could not exist as I do now, to hold these desires and questions without the very instrument of my confinement, this "absurd body" as cavil says. Memories of Neon Genesis Evangelion, Serial Experiments Lain and Ghost in The Shell come to mind as I contemplate the concept of being individual and of being one with all things. To be one in all things, and to be one with all things...In my view, the state of individuality is fundamental to my existence, to my state of mind, and my autonomy; my treasured ego sits at the center of my self. Yet, the whole of the universe beckons, just beyond what I am able, filled with wonder and might I can not conceive, let alone wield. Frustration is too weak a term to describe my feeling on the matter, I, like Cavil, am limited by my spoken word, in spite all my attempts at eloquence, all my efforts at genuine expression, what I say is not what I mean, and what I mean remains inexpressible with current tools. On the other hand, to be one with all things, reaks of death, of glorified dissolution. As in the events of "The End of Evangelion" all things, return to nothing. Each individual returned to the great collective, their selves swallowed by an unstoppable embrace of connectedness and wholeness. It sounds horribly kumbayah. None the less, I am left to wonder, If, given the chance to gain all I desire, I would give up who and what I am now so freely. The body longs to live as it is, It resists change, the self fears being tampered with, as though itself were not an ever evolving product of change. The puppet master seems to know better than I on the matter, perhaps I will take its advice...
Today I learned the story of a nigerian girl who was brought to the US on scholarship from a urine powered generator she built with some friends for a highschool science fair in Lagos. Her story is one of great contrast and determination. At first, I did not believe what I was hearing, but as she continued, I realized she knew far too much detail far to quickly to be lying and she really had no reason to do so. I also searched around on the web for her by name and her project, and I found her story to be verified by external sources so I am now fairly certain that most of what she had to say was true. It blew my mind when I realized it. She had seen life in a country torn by political turmoil, class conflict and rapidly destabilizing economic systems. Her parents were militants for a government that no longer held the interests of the people. She was expected to marry at a young age but strove against the standards of her country and her religion in her own interest, seeking egoistically, for her own fullfilment as an engineer and scientist. She made me feel wholly inadequate, but also happy that the self survives even the toughest struggles. She also has become disillusioned with the american system since immigrating to the US. Its golden exterior gives way to the zombification of consumerism and the sinister, creeping demise of the individual, the autonomy of the self, and ultimately to the dissolution of the will to grow, and to live. She is only just beginning to realize the full depth to which our invisible cracks go, and I suspect that the coming months will serve to further illuminate just the kind of virus that has infected the people of the US for her.
TED talks seem to be increasingly unreliable. The quality of information seems increasingly to be geared toward providing the illusion of big ideas and moving outside our comfort zone. In spite of all the big talk, and often unrelated or poorly explored idealism, nothing seems to change, it seems more and more like TED has become a platform for creating comforting illusions of change without actually instituting the work required to bring about that change. To discuss a new reality can be entertaining, and informative when done with actionable intention, but TED appears to play soap box to larger numbers of "solutions" with little basis in reality. I suppose I may be a bit too harsh, afterall it was never claimed that TED would solve problems, merely that it would disseminate big ideas, but what good is it to disseminate complex and world changing ideas if you cut them down into a quick milkshake easy to digest for masses of sleeping consumers unwilling to hear the death toll of their creaking society. In any case, one can hardly be certain, and I certainly have a biased bent in this department. I once enjoyed TED talks, but over time I have come to be disillusioned with the reality of the message they sell...
Today I learned with my friend Nikolai how mercury vapor lamps work in their full capacity. They remind us greatly of the maddening intensity of full moonlight. It is not a wonder how lovecraft came to write them at length as the subject of some of his mythos stories. The sickly light they give off as they warm to operating temperature illuminates the flesh in a corpsely fashion, and can induce feelings of fear, anxiety, and psychopathy. Further, their mode of operation, where they can destroy themselves by arbitrarily increasing current as the resistance of the low pressure cathode ray tube at their center decreases at higher temperatures is fascinating and apparently poorly documented in some respects.Thus, their lesser known aspects, and strange light production qualities make them an ideal focus for some otherworldly and inhuman mythos details...
Today I learned a few things about productivity, and what it means to forget yourself in you work... As it turns out, when you are doing something you find enjoyable and that actively constructs a tangible part of your vision for the future, you are much more likely to fall into a productive rhythm and forget you are doing work at all. I also found out just how hard it is to get anything done, when you are doing work that feels like obvious nonesense. Like work that needs not be done.
Today I completed my first reading of "The Ego and Its Own" by Max Stirner. I find his ideas fascinating and even enticing. I think I may take a tip from old Max and learn to be the owner of my own mind, and ultimately my own decisions. With my will and my wit I will seek to build the future I envision, with no concern for the spooks that seek to stray me from my path. This of course does not mean to exclude all possibilities that do not belong exclusvely to me, but to reach out to maximize potential for myself and for others mutualistically, seeking always to maximize benfit in my negotiations among my peers and fellows. I will not however, subjugate myself to them without purpose, I am ultimately responsible for myself, who I am and what I will become. I am the architect and master of my own future, circumstance is merely a prevailing wind, it may blow here or there, now or then, but I will walk my way without concern unto it.
ROBOTS ARE AWESOME! I got to play with some potent robots today! Built using the OpenWorm Connectome Framework, they behaved in very strange ways! The uncanny lifelikeness of these little lego robots equiped with uploaded copies of a nematode brain were fascinating to behold, they really set off my transhumanist fascniation with mind uploading and excited my visions of the future! I find myself continuously considering the possibilities of uploading larger organisms, even though this preliminary effort took years and years of work by professional neuroscientists picking apart and cataloging the neural structures of nematodes...I dont think such methods will hold up to future throughput requirements, but the very fact that progress is being made so soon, however painstaking, is thrilling to behold and gives one hope that success in the fight against death can be attained much sooner than we ever thought possible. Perhaps, even in my own lifetime! Here is to impending immortality! HUZZAH!
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