Archive for the ‘Science’ Category

The ever-lit light bulb and intellectual property

March 23, 2014

“Friend”, I didn’t mean for the SF bulb to be THE proof, and the other was a meme going around among us of the student rebellion days.

The point is, that if there is or if there were such a patent for a light bulb as one that never burnt out, would anybody *at all* be surprised if we found out that indeed, GE had bought it up and squelched it? A good example how that it is intuitively rational to see the “moral hazard” of a patent regime, however designed.

Your examples do not show an “unreasonable” application of the idea of copyright or patents. There are at least as many stories about the abuse of IP laws as there are about the abuse without them or outside them like your about Edgar Allan Poe’s.

I know of another where somebody rushed to copyright a song that had been in use for many years by fellow missionaries.

Such laws make IP theft and abuse much easier, in fact. Courtney Love wrote a scathing rebuke at the owners who dominated the music industry for their abuse of the system, leaving the real artists out in the cold. My son produces music in Miami Beach. He formed a band with his older brother and a friend and they had five offers he said made sure the big guys made all the money, for which reason the lawyer they got nixed the first four. The fifth one was okay (maybe word got around), but by that time one of them was tired of personality clashes.

There is another instance. The uncle of the founder of a well-known missionary association is the true writer of the movie Cimarron. The Hollywood studio rejected it, sent it back to him, then went ahead and put it on the big screen.

Without IP laws, these examples demonstrate how creators have a better chance of actually reliably enjoying the profit denied them today, especially if we have a true anarcho-capitalist society.

About this comment:

Our current legal structure around intellectual property is the result of political calculations by legislators who are often being influenced by lobbyists from the large media companies and other companies seeking to gain advantage over competitors. The result is confusing and even contradictory laws, but that does not negate the basic fairness of allowing a creator to benefit from his or her creation.

That is absolutely true and NO WAY you make that go away unless you abolish the custom of supporting a gang of any description, call it an IP Court, with the power to impose commercial and trade restrictions on anybody and everybody in the world or any other jurisdictional boundary.

A dictatorship to enforce “fair compensation” for anybody who creates any new anything is to invite oppression. Ayn-randian suicide by a band of “Mouchers”.

I believe in credit where credit is due and do like to see creative power awarded. That is why the mere idea of IP enforcement has made Microsoft one of the biggest parasite organizations in the world.

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A List of Ways Darwinism and Materialism Hold Back Science

March 23, 2014

 

http://truebook.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/a-list-of-ways-darwinism-and-materialism-hold-back-science/

 

http://truebook.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/a-list-of-ways-darwinism-and-materialism-hold-back-science/

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Intellectual Property Monopolies Clarified

March 22, 2014

Tibor Machan always has something interesting to say in his columns at the Daily Bell web site. For example, his article “Intellectual Property, Anyone?”.

One comment pointed out that one reason that many intellectuals, even some libertarians, defend “intellectual property” monopolies, is “the envy that the intellectual suffer for the successful, troglodyte businessman”…

That may be true for many, but not for all.. But there is at least an idea that other parties who use someone’s new idea are somehow “freeloading”. I do believe in “credit where credit is due”, but this is impossible to do “justly” in the long run when you create incentives for “rent-seeking”. That’s what a copyright and patent regime does , especially in a land of corporations, or, the present land of corporations.

It inevitably becomes a battle of wits and trickery. Two people who have the same idea, but one of them lives closer to the patent office. Is that “fair”? I’m a software engineer, but some of my code is generic functions that I’ve written before. Whose code is that?

The US Constitution included the mention of copyright and patent, with a parenthetical clause that says the purpose was utilitarian. It a land of individual artisans, maybe, maybe not.

The most convincing argument, though, against “intellectual property”, in my opinion, is the total, absolute, unequivocal requirement by definition of an agency (government, mob, dictator, etc.) with powers to violate the non-aggression principle, PLUS the total, absolute, unequivocal arbitrary and capricious nature of where the boundaries are on “intellectual property”. That is, how far does it reach? How many years?

One science fiction writer, Robert Sawyer I think, wrote once that he thought copyrights should be limitless, without expiration, and inheritable to all generations!

This is all because we have come to think of copyright in this way. I have read that before the introduction of the printing press, there was no such thing as copyright, and copyright itself was “invented” by kings and authorities for the purposes of censorship. Think the “stamp act”. Think permits for the First Amendment akin to permits for the Second.

Although Thomas Cahill in his book “How the Irish Saved Civilization” pointed out that the reverence for books that the Irish learned from St. Patrick led to a noble’s exile for sneaking into his neighbor’s palace in the dark of night to copy the neighbor’s books in the dark!

The idea of monopoly rights for inventions for utilitarian purposes is also part and parcel with the idea that a monopoly of force over a bounded geographical area –or unbounded, as some world dictatorship advocates would have it– is necessary for scientific, artistic, and technological advancement.

One example demonstrates the lie of the collective utilitarian argument used in the USA Constitution. Tim Berners-Lee, and hypertext (and related ideas), and his colleagues, public-domaining the Web, and we all can see the results.

A more expansive article of evidence is the “open source” movement (as in the Open Source Foundation, which grew out of the idea of “free software”, with “free as in free speech, not free beer”, Richard Stallman’s preaching point. Tens and maybe hundreds of thousands of programmers are contributing to projects that by now ALL of us use.

Linux servers dominate the nodes used to carry the Internet. Firefox and Chrome and other freely shared browsers are pushing Internet Explorer out of the way. More and more of us are using Open Office or Libre Office or the Google applications to do their documents. This has inspired a parallel movement to do the same thing with hardware inventions, but not just computer hardware, but physical inventions. Open Source programs for 3-D printing for example.

And note that the barriers for entry into the class of patent-holders also holds back new inventions. With the new law Obama recently signed, it’s also a matter of who gets to the patent office first, and no matter if you had prior art, no matter if it was already in the public market. Get the patent and start trolling.

Another argument against patents as incentives for invention is the obvious fact of incentives to suppress them. A new energy patent holder (see infinite-energy.com, and use the hyphen!) might be tempted to sell it to an oil company for a billion bucks, and the oil company might consider it a bargain! And don’t forget the rumor of the light bulb that never burns out. Amazing how long those lights last in your car’s dashboard. And remember Tesla’s suppressed inventions. He might have been able to continue some of that today, with crowd-sourcing.

But the clincher, in my opinion, is the fact that no matter how you might enforce copyright or patent monopoly in the real world, there is no “natural” way at all, no “self-evident” way at all, to do it without arbitrary and capricious decree by somebody against any and all others.

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Creation debate, Ken Ham and Bill Nye

January 17, 2014

MEMO to the clueless: Many of the biggest names in young-Earth Creation Science came there following the evidence, where they found a fact-based faith.

Somebody said it’s not a good idea to debate creation science because “there’s no debate”? Oh right. This is another algoreian myth: True because authority says so? Anti-creationists used to use this as an argument against Creation Science, as if a Creation scientist expected an atheist to believe in Creation just because the Bible says so.

Creationists hear this today and roll their eyes, “There they go again!” And then they say so-and-so percent of the population believes [darwinian] evolution happened, as if that were another “evidence” as to why there should be no debate? So how did new ideas in science ever overcome the prevailing ones? Oh, that’s right, the old paradigm fought against the young mavericks until the mavericks took over and began enforcing new “scientific” dogmas.

These are certainly arguments even some of the “stars” of attacks against Creationism use, and it is a striking example of how even the smartest people, ahem, “brightest”, can use some of the dimmest ever arguments for something.

If something is true just because a majority of scientists believe it, then how can we ever expect to learn anything? Or, as some say against creationism, science is always “correcting itself”!

So your argument is about consensus among scientists? You know, the ones that used to believe the universe revolved around the Earth and got The Church to go along with it.

So long-ages cosmology is beyond question? That’s faith, and in this case, faith because the new Priestly Class, scientists blessed by Big Money and stagnant institutions, say so!

Too bad the very entertaining, quick-thinking and articulate Kent Hovind won’t be there. He even makes Ken Ham squirm. He has a way of clarifying the issues with a sharp wit that holds up pagan-era origins myths up to ridicule.

JEREMIAH 2:26 As the thief is ashamed when he is found, so is the house of Israel ashamed; they, their kings, their princes, and their priests, and their prophets.

27 Saying to a stock, Thou art my father; and to a stone, Thou hast brought me forth: for they have turned their back unto me, and not their face: but in the time of their trouble they will say, Arise, and save us.

 

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There is really only one “race”, the human race

January 3, 2014

Came across this article. The title is, “Early skirmishes in race war”, by Thomas Sowell:
http://www.nationalreview.com/article/362030/early-skirmishes-race-war-thomas-sowell#!

For American society, a dangerous polarization has set in. Signs of this polarization over the years include opposite reactions between blacks and whites to the verdict in the O. J. Simpson murder case, the “rape” charges against Duke University students, and the trials resulting from the beating of Rodney King and the death of Trayvon Martin.

Thomas Sowell, listed four famous incidents that were covered intensely over a long period of time over the last couple of decades. For what It’s worth, Mr. Sowell is a respected economist, and dark-skinned (aka “black”, “African American”, etc).

Maybe that makes me neither black nor white in those terms.

#1. I thought people should leave well enough alone with the O. J. Simpson trial after he was declared “Not Guilty” by the jury. (A mostly white jury, by the way).

#2. I was very skeptical of the charges against the Duke University students, but mostly thought the media, and the university, treated them with their own prejudice.

#3. I thought the police that beat on Rodney King should have been put in prison. They claimed that the drugs that he admittedly had in his system had made him oblivious to pain, so that they had to keep going in order to subject him. I always thought the video showed there were enough officers there to physically subjugate him and then hog-tie him, bind his legs and arms together and haul him back to the station.

But on all these things, it is hard to see how any of the millions of people not directly associated with the events or even indirectly could be so very certain of themselves, just based on media reporting.

In other recent examples, mostly outside the race issue, in my opinion you can see some telling signs of media attitudes about race and class. Casey Anthony was tried, convicted, hung, tarred and feathered on national news networks long before the trial ever began. My own background is from a poor single-mother family, and lived on literally the “wrong side of the tracks”. It became visible to me that the media reporting mostly manifested the elite upper-class snotty-nosed attitude toward “white trash” (or alternately “trailer trash”).

Even now, you get conflicting media flashbacks to the Anthony trial on both sides of the jury decision. A pox on both sides. Not even the jury knows what really happened, it seems, and that would make a “Not Guilty” decision the right one.

#4. That brings me to the Trayvon Martin case. That one is another example where it pays to pay attention, but it pays a thousand times better if you pay heed to the first whispers of reporting, or search back to them, AND waiting to see the details (finally) come to surface.

World Turns Away as Rebel Massacres of Syrian Christians Intensify
http://www.thenewamerican.com/world-news/asia/item/17229-world-turns-away-as-rebel-massacres-of-syrian-christians-intensify

Al Gore Forecasted “Ice-Free” Arctic by 2013; Ice Cover Expands 50%
http://www.thenewamerican.com/tech/environment/item/17207-al-gore-forecasted-ice-free-arctic-by-2013-ice-cover-expands-50

(Tags: race, trials, jury, Christians, persecution, global warming, global cooling, climate change, environment, propaganda

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I used to sit in the atheist chair

December 29, 2013
English: Diagram showing the steps of the scie...

English: Diagram showing the steps of the scientific method. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

 

I used to sit in the atheist chair, but determined to keep my mind open to whatever the truth was, and was dragged along by science, facts, logic, history to the Bible.

 

The Creator has a right to laugh at those who plot against him. Isa 33:22 For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

 

It is ridiculous to question the truth. Cellular life, DNA, appearing for no reason from the dirt plus water plus sunlight, entropy violated, 20 anthropic principle physical universe values fine-tuned, spiral galaxies, dozens of objects that contradict the red shift distance calculation, Pasteur’s research showing life cannot come from non-life, Mendel showing that traits are inherited, not so spontaneous, mathematicians showing that DNA amino-acids spontaneously sequencing just so cannot happen, blood clotting requiring 12 steps of specific chemistry, most involving irreducibly specific compounds that cannot “evolve” stepwise, too many benevolent mutations required, polystrate fossils, polonium halos, soft tissue in T-rex fossils with the stink of rotting flesh, the Lensky E Coli experiment where the little cells adapt just like from the beginning and E Coli is still E Coli, creation scientist Russ Humphreys predicting the outer planets’ magnetic field strength spot on based on Genesis One and all of NASAs geniuses missing by orders of magnitude, evidence of the Flood all around with shared flood memories in the most remote cultures, carvings in ancient temples depicting dinosaurs, Ica stones, uniqueness of Earth.

 

See, creationists like to talk about science, atheists like to talk about religion. Creation scientists debate with facts, anti-creationists debate with ad-hominems. Creation scientists rely on the scientific method, Stephen Gould said We don’t need the scientific method anymore.

 

But a Darwinist himself, Lewontin, blatantly admits that anti-creationists don’t care about the evidence for or against God or the Bible:

 

Lewtontin: “We take the side of science in spite of the patent absurdity of some of its constructs, in spite of its failure to fulfill many of its extravagant promises of health and life, in spite of the tolerance of the scientific community for unsubstantiated just-so stories, because we have a prior commitment, a commitment to materialism. It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover, that materialism is an absolute, for we cannot allow a Divine Foot in the door”.

 

 

 

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The “human family tree”?

December 28, 2013
Generic amino acids (1) in neutral form, (2) a...

Generic amino acids (1) in neutral form, (2) as they exist physiologically, and (3) joined together as a dipeptide. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/human-family-tree/

 

So the genetics the Creation-deniers said proved Darwinism (punctuated equilibrium with no evidence for punctuation) found Adam and and Eve but they’re still afraid to admit the obvious. They have NO FRIGGIN’ IDEA how long ago those two lived no matter what they come up with. There’s the Biblical genealogy and then there are the other genealogies from other lands that point the same direction that they never let loose.

 

The first guy that compiled all the world’s flood stories said he thought it would prove the Biblical flood was just another myth, and by so doing showed that it was NOT a myth.

 

Darwin’s idea has taken hits from every major advance in biology, biochemistry, biophysics, but blind faith does not need evidence. It’s like the co-worker that once responded to the (still current) 15-year cooling trend with “Global cooling is part of global warming.” You cannot make this stuff up.

 

First, Darwin himself admitted that the fossils were testament against his theory.

 

Then Pasteur proved you cannot get life from non-life.

 

Gregor Mendel proved that a plant inherits its traits from its progenitors.

 

Watson and Crick discover DNA, a massive molecular paradigm with intricate design and structure a nd flexibility to blueprint all biology, built from just four amino acids (“letters”) with a completely SYMBOLIC language with no direct natural relation to the biology that it designs.

 

The DNA is so contradictory to the idea of spontaneous life from dirt that Crick couldn’t believe it. Being at least honest about that much, but unwilling to admit the Original Origins Theory that the greats of science history held, which dethrones smarter-than-thou I-said-so scientists, he says it was comets. Everybody laughed at that, so he said “It was aliens!” Everybody laughed at that too, but with time some of them demanded they had to fill the gaps with aliens. Did he even think of the one Great Extraterrestrial that pop-sci today avoids like the plague? We don’t know, but he never said so.

 

(At least the head of the human genome project finally said okay, yes, there is evidence of design here.. But then said that the God that intervened to create life by design, would not actually intervene in the creation. True, kid you not.)

 

So Drake pulled out a formula and with a few sweeps of the pen had the galaxy crawling with life out of corners, and Carl Sagan jumped in and helped the feds finance the Great Search for We Are Not Alone. Michael Crichton would later give a speech that should have had everybody cackling wildly at it. Nope. Instead we got ten thousand “science fiction” movies. The title of his speech shows the fairy tale origins story: “Aliens cause global warming”.

 

Then Stanley and Miller create an intelligently designed experiment to create amino acids from methane and other ingredients using electric sparks, from which mix they have to immediately remove the amino acids to save them from immediate destruction, thereby proving that amino acids could not appear spontaneously in the chemical mix they needed to make them, and so they announce the opposite! I am not making this up! And dozens of science articles were written and experiments done everybody repeated that the experiment that showed amino acids cannot get created spontaneously from this mix “proved” that it could.

 

And then mathematicians start taking those amino acids (all left-handed none right-handed) and calculate the odds of a spontaneous line-up, like all those monkeys with taking “as long as it takes” to type out the Encyclopedia Britannica (with much less specified complexity than a genome by the way). And the mathematicians calculate, yep, for one itsy bitsy single solitary DNA molecule to just happen like that, even given the ingredients and the conditions, you need MORE TIME THAN THE UNIVERSE IS OLD, by about a gazillion times longer!

 

Mathematicians have a very exotic word for odds like that: “impossible”. Or sometimes, “not gonna happen”.

 

The biologists retorted with “We’re smarter than you! We’re the biologists! We’re the paleontologists! No way you’re going to mess with our trade secrets! The “divine foot in the door” is “unacceptable”! The mathematicians retorted back by putting their figurative hand on their own holy books and swore that they would never question the inviolate dogmatic faith of the high priests of modern biology but that the biologists had to come up with something better that did not challenge the mathematicians’ faith in the dogma!

 

So the biologists just announced that it was not chance anymore that generated life. What was it then? “Never mind, we’ll get back to you, we know it’s true, we don’t need to do any five-step scientific method on this one, someday we’ll show you, just accept it by faith (but don’t use that word)..”

 

And they discover bio-molecular super-machines that cannot be deconstructed and that have functions that have nothing to with any of their parts. But they come back and do a thought experiment that creates more problems and multiplies the odds against, but that doesn’t matter, because they’re smarter than you.

 

Then the “trade secret” of paleontology comes out of the closet, because a biology hot shot has figured out that to prove “punctuated equilibrium” he doesn’t need any friggin’ evidence for the “punctuation” because the “trade secret” is that there is no record of it in the fossils.

 

Then we hear that there is SOFT TISSUE in the dinosaur bones, included obvious and visible blood cells. So contrary to all of what science knows about organic tissue exposed to the elements, they announce that they are so surprised that red blood cells can survive for 68 million years! You cannot make this stuff up! And they ridicule people that believe in a rabbit’s foot!

 

Then we discover tucked in between other stuff that the dinosaur digs up in Montana actually still emit a very strong stench of rotting flesh! But I guess they’re hoping nobody notices that! They might question the trade secrets.

 

“in the beginning, God…”

 

 

 

Related articles

 

 

See? Government regulations are so they can beat up on little guys for the BIG corps

November 26, 2013
Animation of the structure of a section of DNA...

Animation of the structure of a section of DNA. The bases lie horizontally between the two spiraling strands. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

FDA Tells Google-Backed 23andMe to Halt DNA Test Service – Bloomberg:
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-11-25/fda-tells-google-backed-23andme-to-halt-dna-test-service.html#!

UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH), the largest publicly traded U.S. health insurer, raised concern in a March 2012 report about the accuracy and affordability of the tests. Such types of genetic tests may become a $25 billion annual market in the U.S. within a decade, highlighting the need to identify which work best, the insurer said at the time.

Mu bonito, my Hispanic family half would say, UnitedHealth is all so worried about the little guys. That’s why they when you make a claim, they ask you to look again if the payout should be bigger than what you asked for, right….

 

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▶ Big Brains. Small Films. Benoît Mandelbrot, The Father of Fractals

November 26, 2013
English: Benoît Mandelbrot at the EPFL, on the...

English: Benoît Mandelbrot at the EPFL, on the 14h of March 2007 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

▶ Big Brains. Small Films. Benoît Mandelbrot, The Father of Fractals | IBMYouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ehwy4Gq27uY

Wow, one amazing dude. Big brains, indeed.. His advance in mathematics has been applied to a great number of science and engineering applications.

And how much elegant simplicity God has wrought in the universe to weave such an amazing complex of phenomena.

Occasionally, he lets us see a bit more of it…

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Robot Liability Issues? Space Internet with Lasers

October 25, 2013

ROBOTS

 

Robots are getting better, and some people are already talking about the liability issues. I’ll bet there are a few corporate lawyers and litigation specialists helping drive the talk:

http://cacm.acm.org/news/169024-legal-issues-with-robots/fulltext

 

They’re worried about open source robots. Who to blame when something goes wrong?

 

Much worry about nothing. Who sued Microsoft for all the time and money lost to the Blue Screen Of Death?

 

Nobody died, but….

 

It’s simple anyway. If you build a robot and sell it and it is to blame in some hypothetical situation, it’s a deal between them and you. Linux proved more reliable than Microsoft, more stable and generally less vulnerable to attacks, but Microsoft gets liability protections when it sells its stuff. Disclaimers tell you that by using it, you can’t blame them for the results.

 

Some computer academics want to roll that back. But do businesses really want that? For a fool-proof computer system, for all contexts and uses that you might imagine, free of glitches, you’d have to pay double.

 

Look, you want a car that will resist damage in an accident to that extent? Get an 18-wheeler. Otherwise, get what you can pay for and what you think is worth it. Or if you’re a business, of course it’s the same thing.

 

Of course, I’m glad Open Source is invading the robotics space. It’s already practically taken over the 3-D printing space, from what I can see.

 

 

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SPACE INTERNET?

 

http://cacm.acm.org/news/169004-nasa-says-first-space-internet-test-beyond-expectations/fulltext

 

NASA was (is) testing laser communication systems as a medium for a space-based Internet.

Cornell says the laser communications system could form the building blocks of an outerspace Internet. “This is the beginning of that,” he says. “I think we could have that with delay tolerant networking.”

NASA hopes to use similar systems for faster satellite communications and deep space communications with robots and human exploration crews in the future. Two-way laser communications systems can deliver six times more data with 25 percent less power than the best radio systems currently in use today, and weigh half as much, Cornwell notes.

“Oh, it’s going to enable a lot of things,” he says, “but the big benefit is you can send back more data from wherever you are.”

It will require line-of-sight, right? But then there’s not as much clutter in space as there is on the ground here, except for near-Earth orbiting space junk and useful stuff up there.

 

 


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