Scientists get closer to the physical limit of conscious

You know what a visual illusion is : you watch something and you actually see (or cannot see) something else. Images are processed in the brain and therefore there must be a place where the wrong interpretation of the image occurs...

Some scientists have found the error is not in the eye and even gets into the brain. But the conscious perception is indeed wrong. This is clearly the first step to find the limit of where consciousnsess lies in the brain (by knowing where it's not).


So technology makes you dumb ?

...seems like. But I doubt about the larger impact. Only the aspect of the "context switching" seem to be the important factor here. Maybe the effect on kids too...

Hibernation of mice

So mice has been set in deep sleep state for 6h and have recovered without any damage. Just by using a gas.

Their temperature was reduced to 15°C instead of their normal 37°C. The need for oxygen of cells was highly reduced.... Which means one of the major drawbacks of human could fall down (a bit) in the future. At least for space travels.


Common Sense

There is a new chatbot based on AI that is going to be put online soon. The difference here is that it's supposed to have "common sense". That's probably a good idea, because at some point a machine will have to decide what is interresting information, and decide between quantity and quality. But the way it's presented here is a bit flawed :
Others admitted computers could become intelligent but said they would never develop qualities such as compassion or wisdom which were uniquely human, the result of our emotional upbringing and experience. The definition of intelligence itself began to slip through the philosophers' fingers, and the disagreements continue today.

IMO compassion is not the way of evolution. It seems to help getting humans together, but it removes the necessary balance in nature between good and evil. Letting things die is part of nature too. Otherwise evolution (unadapted species) would not work. Maybe that's the key point we'll have to deal with soon : is evolution worth ? That might be the only way to stop it (if decided so). But I'm all for it, just because it's just where we belong in nature/universe.


Ray Kurtzweil meets Mikail Gorbatchev

Nop, it's not a political-science chimera. It's just a report from Kurzweil about their meeting recently. A short but worth discussion.

Mikhail: My advice would be to have a dialogue with people, to help overcome prejudice, to build bridges of understanding.

Mikhail's fourth toast: Only monks and nuns do their thinking alone. We need to communicate our thoughts and work together.


Recovering from unconsciousness

A rather long article that shed some different light on Terry Schiavo's case (for those who never read the news, it's a woman in vegetative state that is being starved to death). Recovering from this vegetative state is sometimes quick, but it can sometimes be long. It all depends on the level of injuries (lack of oxygen in the brain). But the brain recovers gradually from the coma state to consciousness.