Test Information Space

Journal of Tech, Testing and Trends

Summer of Parts

Posted by cadsmith on May 24, 2010


Digital consciousness has made strides in creativity and biology. Technology is an enabler, though complexity can render further opportunities invisible. Q&A is becoming easier to find. Theoretical frameworks can aggregate sources as shown in books and documents. A synthetic philosopher has not yet been demonstrated, nor the answer to whether a pair would agree.

Recent links: test: Phoronix benchmark, .NET unit; computer: molecular brain, data format archive; robotics: free Microsoft RDS; email: Google gadgets, wave is public; search: Yandex; social media: Vinehub, cafe in a box; tv: Clicker; video: WebM project; technology: synthetic biology, quantum teleportaion 16m, Kostner oil cleanup, China conference livestream; finance: Banksimple; Apple racing for cloud cap.

Blogs of interest:

NYT column What is a philosopher? Plenty of comments follow the post on this new blog “The Stone”. None had said, so far, that philosophy is technology. This seems extreme and falsifiable, but there may be a movement toward its proof, as has happened for science and medicine. If bodies are machines, and knowledgeable wisdom is embodied, then perhaps this too can be practiced. The subtypes might then become those of computation, e.g. cloud, code, robotic, quantum and so on. The technology problem becomes interesting, whether evaluation, determinism, pace, side-effects, human limitations, economics, oppression, etc. Predictions are the product of theories; better questions, along with meaning and morality, of philosophy. The staff of Moses may have new significance.

Book reviews:

Bursts: The Hidden Pattern Behind Everything We Do, Barabasi, 2010.

This breakthrough book delves into the reasons for the way motions tend to suddenly occur together in a group. The absolute answer when it comes to humans usually involves priorities and can be described by power laws. Long periods of inactivity are followed by brief intensity. Natural phenomena often have yet to be discovered rules or states. The metaphysical mystery is that randomness is required for deterministic prediction in the form of probabilities. This learned lesson is blended into the story of the 16th century Crusades and the leader Gyorgy Dozsa Szekely, the last name means frontier guard, who rose from obscurity to final execution. Poisson and Popper are brought in to argue about possibility of prognostication while Einstein offers diffusion theory and other mathematicians document collected cases. Twenty-eight chapters punctuate the flurry of facts illustrated by the historical and scientific illuminations of Botond Reszegh. The style of the narrative is densely detailed and seems to have been written in a nonlinear fashion, the moral of the tale saved for the calculated conclusion.

Philosophy of Technology and .Engineering Sciences, edited by Meijers, 2009.

This is a handbook for the student of technology. It summarizes knowledge and practice, lists questions, and sets a research agenda. The contents are hierarchically organized. Philosophy is the study of aims, methods and assumptions. While that of science was about representing reality, it is applied here to five disciplines: architecture, agriculture, medicine, biology, and information. The original literature search resulted in sixty-five topics which were then constrained by available experts and authors. This led to 41 chapters in 6 parts for the definitions and theories, epistemology and ontology, design, modeling and methodology, norms and values, and issues. Each chapter has introduction, discussion analogous to the overall parts, and conclusion. For example, computer science is described as modeling and designing artifacts. It looks at the nature of information. Computational philosophy superseded linguistics in the 90s and cognitive artifacts now combine hybrid human and computer components. This book itself might be a candidate for ontology extraction by the semantic web. Another example would be synthetic biology where Craig Venter’s views on digitization and the writing of the genetic code are discussed.

The Semantic Web for Knowledge and Data Management: Technologies and Practices, Ma and Wang, 2008.

This book describes semantic web applications in a series of twelve papers and indicates areas for further research. The authors have demonstrated ontology extraction from UML Semantic mobile is large-scale, but not as well-linked as rest of semantic web. E-tourism uses machine-readable RDF repositories and reasoning as knowledge bases instead of databases. XML-based P2P systems utilize semantically-augmented query, semantic relationship matrices, and RDF schema graphs. Semantic web-aided rich mining system imports ontological data from domains. Semantic overlay networks coordinate peer data management systems through semantic routing indices. Semantic annotation automatically extracts entities and relations. Ontologies, topic maps and RDF can be stored in a relational database for easier modification. Fuzzy description logic expressiveness adds complexity. Other examples include probabilistic models, intelligent agents, and contextual concept discovery. Links are shown for sources on the web. The semantic web corpus would seem to be a worthwhile application to present and navigate the concepts, contributors, code and changes. This might be a precursor to tackling the topic of technology beyond linked data mashups.

Creative Space: Models of Creative Processes for the Knowledge Civilization Age, Wierzbicki and Nakamori, 2005.

This is a delightful treatment of preverbal creativity. A knowledge civilization is expected to exist through 2100. Philosophy will be emergent. A new informed systems approach, beyond games of words, and involving social interactivity so it is not completely automated, will help solve the pressing and future issues and paradoxes. In the midst of computerized creative environments, a topic outside the scope of the book, there is a concept of a space comprised of about 3.5 billion transitions between nodes, each representing a unique concept. A Shinayakana approach, the synthesis of hard and soft systems, and a mix of Oriental and Occidental perspectives, e.g. of wisdom and logic, is applied. The authors hail from Japan and Poland. As far as style, emphasis is provided by italics for phrases or box outlines for paragraphs. Spirals are used to diagram creation processes, akin to circuits or cells, similar to the book The Grammar of Technology Development. There are three for organizational knowledge, three for normal academic knowledge and another for revolutionary scientific. They can be juxtaposed or merged, for example into a triple helix projected which functions as a sort of enlightenment press. All are shown together in a tree of types. There can be a lot more observations after an appropriate gestation period. The reader may wonder, if mind is action as the text extols, if they have also developed a material that can replicate human intuition.


Grace Hopper by Beyer 2010,

Aubrey de Grey at TEDMED 2009

Documents of interest:

A General Perspective on Role of Theory in Qualitative Research, Tavalleai and Talib, 2010 (PDF)

Philosophy of Man and Technology, Verbeek 2009 (PDF)

Has the Philosophy of Technology Arrived?: A State-of-the-Art Review Ihde 2003 (PDF)

A Critical Examination of Heidegger’s Thoughts: Technology Places Humanity in Shackles Hindering Our Natural Thinking Process and Our Connection to Being, Renee A. Pistone

The Role of Theory in Research, Kawulich

Logical Structure, Theoretical Frameworks, Cline and Clark, 2000

Toward a Philosophy of Technology, Jonas 1979

The Question Concerning Technology, Heidegger 1954

A Visual Study Guide to Cognitive Biases

Techne: Research in Technology and Philosophy journal

Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy


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