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Phil Osborn's Articles » Page 2
June 5, 2016 by Phil Osborn
I'm going to try to supplement my aging bioram with a record of whatever brilliant - or not - spin-offs from material in "Scientific American" that I'm able to generate. 

1> The article "Eggshell Education" in the June 2016 issue dovetails nicely with some thinking I've been doing about mockingbirds.   The OC went through a major decline in the Mockingbird population when the crows moved in en masse about 20 years ago.  Every evening brought rivers...
May 28, 2016 by Phil Osborn
See http://www.kurzweilai.net/why-evolution-may-be-intelligent-based-on-deep-learning

My comment there:  "I recall coming to essentially the same conclusion in the late '60's after reading Koestler's "The Act of Creation," or perhaps it was "Janus."  I think it was referred to me by the Nathaniel Brandon Institute. As I recall, Koestler did not believe in junk DNA, for good reasons having to do with basic information theory. 

I agreed, but, in part, my agreement ...
May 14, 2016 by Phil Osborn
New AI breakthrough: One of the hardest jobs for AI has been natural language parsing. There are many examples of ambiguity that would stump most human recipients - and yet are perfectly valid, grammatically correct, etc. We humans resolve these situations by putting them in a context and/or by seeking further clarification. This task - translating a stream of symbols such as words into a meaningful mental object in our consciousness - has been partially solved to date by heroic statis...
May 11, 2016 by Phil Osborn
This blog is intended to be derivative of my blog "On Morals."

Suppose you have the misfortune to be born to wealth, but with no apparent talent for greatness.  If you have good examples to emulate, you may still do ok.  However, as I demonstrated in "On Morals," the crucial impetus for consciousness - what drives it - is feedback of the form of reaffirmation of reality.  It is seeing the abstract made concrete - "the Word made flesh" - that fuels our passions,&n...
April 21, 2016 by Phil Osborn
 Update 05-02-2016

One interesting note was the focus by the NASA reps on gender balance.  (My estimate is that overall, of the ~60 participants, probably at least a third were women.) The large team immediately behind me that was working on an emergency person locator APP aimed at alerting first responders as to immediate emergencies was ~gender neutral, slightly less than half women. Their top coder, by universal acclaim, was a black woman. The NASA rep (this w...
April 17, 2016 by Phil Osborn
10/09/16 More of the same.  Tedious correction of product data with endless errors.  Still no manual for the CMS stuff.  I know how to do three or four basic operations - and my instructor on those operations got a good deal wrong.  As I expected, the old website disappeared and/or was blocked from my access.  This directly contradicted my own instructions as well as the job requirements, so I was finally given a new address to access what amounts to the verified so...
April 10, 2016 by Phil Osborn
I find myself thinking in terms of Les Miserables a lot recently.  Odd the twists and turns of the mind.Imagine, if you will, the following scenario:  Our protagonist suddenly recalls committing a string of unrelated crimes of whim a long time ago - when he was a young precocious sociopath by default, his even younger childhood consisting of a series of betrayals and false accusations that ultimately overwhelm his innocence.  Note that as an adult, he has fasti...
November 21, 2015 by Phil Osborn
The Programming Grid is on fb:  https://www.facebook.com/Loscon/

Or, go here:  www.LOSCON.org

My schedule as a panelist:

FRI 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Marquis 2:
Virtual Reality: Making an Unreal Life Occulus Rift, etc, challenges, personalizing VR, ethics and morality of VR
Panelists: Keith Henson, Trina Phillips, Gene Turnbow, Willard (Phil) Osborn

My comments prior to the con

In a way, this is recent history with the Repeat button jammed down.   The MUDDs and ...
November 17, 2015 by Phil Osborn
Note: 12/12/2015  This blog was written shortly before the San Bernardino terror.

Dylan Watkins, the founder (?), ramrod of OCVR kept telling me over the past year that my ideas were SOOOO close to this other writer that I HAD to check his book, Daemon.  Finally I remembered to Google and the first thing that shows up is "Daemon and Freedomᵀᴹ comprise a two-part novel by the author Daniel Suarez about a distributed, persistent computer application, known as The Daemon, tha...
November 7, 2015 by Phil Osborn
So, everything appeared to be normal today at the library's public computer section.  For once, even the perpetually Screaming Baby was quiet. (Perhaps GOD finally took pity on the rest of humanity and gave the kid a strep throat - or diverted a truck.  Or perhaps it was some one's idea of a phone prank all along.  I never actually saw the kid, but you couldn't escape the sound, every few minutes, full operatic volume.  Maybe he or she matured?)

And b...
October 26, 2015 by Phil Osborn
12/03/2016: So...  WHO spent the most $ (2 to 1)?  WHO was elected anyway?  Do I have to say it?  ITYS

And, to be fair, I figured that the election was probably in the bag for Clinton, anyway, regardless of funding, but the funding issue clearly did not make a difference.  Trump could probably have spent a lot less and Hillary a lot more without changing the results.  So, will all the experts who rake in the big bucks to help poor hapless politicia...
October 15, 2015 by Phil Osborn
Remember "Firefly."

That should be in the back of every programmer's personal perspective, like "Remember the Alamo," "Never again!," or the "Fermi Paradox," cosmic tweets conveying the essence of a haunting question or a meta-wrong still not set right, or, ... if you will, a battle cry!  Look up "Firefly."  Here's a reasonable source:  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Firefly_(website)

No doubt the reader has run into the Firefly algorithm on Amazon and elsewhere,...
September 5, 2015 by Phil Osborn

12/19/2015  (This is where our medical coverage dollars are eaten by the system)

See also my earlier blog on errors in billing as well as major screw-ups at Social Security regarding Medicare...  http://philosborn.joeuser.com/article/464456/Medicare_FRAUD_-_1-800-633-4227


01/24/2016   What a NIGHTMARE!  If Medicare, Blue Shield, and Anthem/Blue Cross are examples of our future, then good bye, homo-sap.  I have spent averaging two hours...
August 9, 2015 by Phil Osborn
The Morals and Rights Issues Regarding Vaccines

Phil Osborn  August 9, 2015

See also: http://www.sb277.org/



I suppose I should be happy.   More to do to set the world straight, right?   Except that this one is a doozy, a  potentially Sisyphean task, tail-eating and self-referential like I can har...
July 23, 2015 by Phil Osborn
Has anyone seen a good explanation or even just a decent discussion about "time?"

I have read that the current popular scientific view of time is that the past has no more "existence" than the future.  Is time like the pages of a book, that we could potentially re-read, as in "time travel?"  Are there some huge number of quantized pasts?   Or is it something altogether different in kind? 

I've read or heard about as much on this foundational subject as I have o...