Tag Archives: cyborg

Machines with Human Abilities, Scientists Growing Dolls from Living Cells, and New Catfish Species Can Climb Rocks

> Tests show machines closing in on human abilities
> Scientists Grow Doll Out of Living Cells, Complex Organisms Next
> New Venezuelan Catfish Species Capable of Climbing

Inebriated Press
January 30, 2009

Human or not

Human or not

The New Scientist Magazine reported last week that the Turing test – a simple way to tell if a machine can think –  shows that machines are closing in on human abilities, and can almost pass as one of us.  And Gizmodo reported last week that researchers at the University of Tokyo have created a 5mm tall doll composed of living cells, in an experiment to create 3D living biological structures.  Meanwhile, LiveScience reported last week that a previously unknown species of climbing catfish has been discovered in remote Venezuela, and its strange traits are shaking the evolutionary tree. Some pundits are debating the nature of life and consciousness, while others wonder whether silicon breasts are as good or better than the real ones.

“You are what you are but you can strive to be better if you want, and bigger boobs are always better, whether they’re real, imagined or silicon,” said Tom Headd-Bobb McGee, a weight lifter and part-time investment banker at several Wall Street firms currently in re-org.  “Thinking cyborgs, Japanese-grown dolls and other life forms, even rock climbing fish are nothing compared to the crazy shit we’re going to see before the Obama administration is through.  If I didn’t spend most of my time job hunting and checking out boob sizes I’d be nervous about the future.  As it is, I just keep moving on and expect ‘change that somebody can believe in’ to keep coming at me.  No point being afraid, just be ready to duck when you have to and hope for the best.”

Mmmm silicon ...

Mmmm silicon ...

Not everyone sees it the way Headd-Bobb does.  “As human nature and animal evolution continue to advance into the realm of psycho-spiritual physical-ethereal dimensions and we become like gods and remake ourselves with human, plant, animal and mechanical components, we will reach the point where we will be all things at all times and none of them when we don’t want to be,” said Randi Anne-Browne, a new age philosopher and nymphomaniac, when she’s not flipping tofu burgers at the Green Galley Cafe and Head Bangers Lounge.  “I mean, Barack Obama is closest to being all things and none of them, and often says and does conflicting things at the same time.  He is the leading enlightened being on the planet so far, but he lacks physical cyber alteration that is really necessary for him to became a transcendent species capable of stepping beyond mere human and spiritual planes and into mechanical and Internet space and time.  He’s close though.  Really close.  I can’t even understand the logic he’s using half the time and that proves it.”

New Scientist reported that it may have been dreamt up in 1950, but the Turing test – a simple way to tell if a machine can think – still holds powerful sway over many researchers striving to produce a machine at least in some respects equal with a human. The 2008 winner of the annual Turing test contest won using a brilliantly simple strategy that Turing didn’t even foresee. Elbot (elbot.com) convinced three of 12 humans it was just like them by acting like a human pretending to be a robot. The article said the line between reality and animation is blurring, and while there have been some significant milestones, bigger stuff is ahead.  Robotic systems may soon have to make decisions over life and death.

Brave new world

Brave new world

At a conference last year legal and military experts suggested entrusting a Turing test with an altogether more serious job – determining whether or not military equipment may choose for itself when and where to fire. Debate at the Ethics of Autonomous Military Systems conference centered on whether a robot could yet commit a war crime. Ronald Arkin, of Georgia Institute of Technology, argues that machines will one day be able to make that judgment as well as a human can. One that does will have passed the military Turing test.

The doll that was grown

The doll that was grown

Gizmodo reported that researchers at the University of Tokyo created a 5mm tall doll composed of living cells, in an experiment to create 3D living biological structures. It’s cute and kinda gross at the same time. The experiment is supposed to help improve techniques to create bodily organs and tissues with complex cellular structures, which would be useful for regenerative medicine and drug development. Scientists created the little gingerbread-looking man by cultivating 100,000 0.1mm balls of collagen, each coated with dozens of skin cells and dropping them inside a doll-shaped mold for a day. The doll managed to survive in a culture solution for more than one day. Shoji Takeuchi, a professor at the University of Tokyo’s Institute of Industrial Science, said he’ll be trying to combine multiple types of cells next to create a complex system that could function as a living organism. Translated: “First we’re growing dolls. Next we’re going to grow PEOPLE.” Just kidding. I think.

New age rock climber

New age rock climber

LiveScience reported that a previously unknown species of climbing catfish has been discovered in remote Venezuela, and its strange traits are shaking the evolutionary tree for these fish. The newfound catfish, Lithogenes wahari, shares traits with two different families of fish – Loricariidae (armored catfishes) and Astroblepidae (climbing catfishes). It has bony armor that protects its head and tail, and a grasping pelvic fin that helps it to climb vertical surfaces such as rocks. “We see new fish species all the time, but when you also get new information about the biological history of a group, it’s the most fun,” Scott Schaefer of the American Museum of Natural History in New York said. “The question is whether the grasping pelvis and climbing behavior evolved once or if it was independently acquired in these groups. I don’t think it evolved twice, although there are slight anatomical differences – so the jury is still out.” The paper is published in the journal American Museum Novitates, and the research was supported by the Constantine S. Niarchos Scientific Expedition Fund and the National Science Foundation.

Some people say that Barack Obama isn’t really a new species at all, but is simply old style Chicago politics polished up for a new age.

090130-cybersex1“There’s nothing inherently different in Obama’s style of Chicago power politics, except that he personally breaks less bones while structuring a dominating political machine,” said Heather Rae Clevagemore, a natural blonde dental assistant and political analyst, with curves that don’t stop and an attitude to match.  “Politicians are constantly redefining themselves, repackaging their message, rounding up support by making promises and then paying them off as they go along.  That’s Barack’s deal on Guantanamo, on funding international abortion clinics, opening up the military for openly gay troops, all that stuff.  Both Houses of Congress are Democrat and he’s got a full power majority.  He’s trying to get a few Republicans to go along with him so he can call his pay-back non-partisan, but that’s same-old same-old.  The difference is that he’s got an e-based army, the major media in his pocket, and George Soros money all behind him … plus a fearful public because of the economy, that’ll let him do anything he wants to as long as he keeps saying nice things to them.  He won’t get down and dirty if he can knife people quietly along the way.  It’s Chicago style the Barack 2.0 way.”

Darwins tree

Darwins tree

In other news, New Scientist reported last week that Charles Darwin was wrong about the tree of life. Darwin toyed with the concept of a “tree of life” to explain the evolutionary relationships between different species. It was to prove a fruitful idea: by the time he published On The Origin of Species 22 years later, Darwin’s spindly tree had grown into a mighty oak. For much of the past 150 years, biology has largely concerned itself with filling in the details of the tree. But today the project lies in tatters, torn to pieces by an onslaught of negative evidence. Many biologists now argue that the tree concept is obsolete and needs to be discarded. “We have no evidence at all that the tree of life is a reality,” says Eric Bapteste, an evolutionary biologist at the Pierre and Marie Curie University in Paris, France.

So what happened? In a nutshell, DNA. The discovery of the structure of DNA in 1953 opened up new vistas for evolutionary biology. The problems began in the early 1990s when it became possible to sequence actual bacterial and archaeal genes rather than just RNA. Everybody expected these DNA sequences to confirm the RNA tree, and sometimes they did but, crucially, sometimes they did not. As more and more genes were sequenced, it became clear that the patterns of relatedness could only be explained if bacteria and archaea were routinely swapping genetic material with other species – often across huge taxonomic distances – in a process called horizontal gene transfer (HGT). As it became clear that HGT was a major factor, biologists started to realise the implications for the tree concept. As early as 1993, some were proposing that for bacteria and archaea the tree of life was more like a web. No word on whether Obama 2.0 and his reliance on a web of e-connected backers will evolve into a second term, but Obama and his minions are on the case already, and like the leftist Senator who morphed into a centrist-looking President while continuing to do leftist things, Vegas is already betting he will likely climb the rocks better than a Venezuelan Catfish.

(C) 2009 InebriatedPress.com

 

Source articles:

Tests that show machines closing in on human abilities
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn16461-tests-that-show-machines-closing-in-on-human-abilities.html?full=true

Scientists Grow Doll Out of Living Cells, Complex Organisms Next
http://i.gizmodo.com/5137610/scientists-grow-doll-out-of-living-cells-complex-organisms-next

New Catfish Species Climbs Rocks
http://news.yahoo.com/s/livescience/20090122/sc_livescience/newcatfishspeciesclimbsrocks

Why Darwin was wrong about the tree of life
http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg20126921.600-why-darwin-was-wrong-about-the-tree-of-life.html?full=true

Comments Off on Machines with Human Abilities, Scientists Growing Dolls from Living Cells, and New Catfish Species Can Climb Rocks

Filed under Humor, IP News

Your Eyeball as Webcam and New STD Dating Model

San Francisco artist looks to replace lost eyeball with webcam
New Dating: Dinner, Movie and an STD Test?

Inebriated Press
November 20, 2008

Webcam eyeball wannabee

Webcam eyeball wannabee

New York Daily News reported Monday that a one-eyed San Francisco artist wants to replace her missing eye with a Web cam and tech experts say it’s possible; and MyFox Kansas City reported Monday, that a new Overland Park lab is betting its business on a rather unusual new dating model. MedExpress is telling couples to stop in and get an STD test before grabbing dinner or going dancing. Pundits debate the marvels of science and sex, as cyber humans are created right before our webcam eyes.

“I think science will continue to save and enrich our lives well into the century, if we’ll just let it,” said Marcy Marybelle-Fairlane, a buxom blonde dentist, with customers backed up around the block.  “It just makes common sense to get STD tested with your date so you know what your dealing with as the evening progresses — it’s a full disclosure kind of thing.  And if you can replace a bad eye with a webcam that can help you see, plus record and playback events on demand, you’ll be all the better for it.  I use the latest technology in my dental practice and it’s made for better and happier patients, and my silicon implants have doubled my breast size and increased my male customer base three-fold.  Is science great or what?!”

Not everyone is comfortable with the notion that science should drive the development of human life.  “I’m okay with an emergency appendectomy and the battle against the common cold, but when people start swapping parts with machines and we have to do pre-date bio-screening I think we’ve gone to far,” said Becky Lee-Wardway, a conservative leaning organic food store manager, and winner of the 2008 alfalfa sprout eating contest.  “I can kind of see health screening before you get married and stuff like that, but I don’t support mechanical eyeballs, silicon breast implants, Viagra, and other non-natural stimulants and body enhancers.  I think marijuana should be legalized because it’s a natural product and if people of any age want to have sex or vote Democrat it should be okay too.  I fully support tactile encounters of sexual and food experimentation but no sex with machines or swapping of human and hydraulic fluids.  We’ll loose control of everything we care about if we let science run our lives.”

The New York Daily News reported that Tanya Vlach, one-eyed San Francisco artist, wants to replace her missing eye with a Web cam – and tech experts say it’s possible. Vlach, who lost her eye in a 2005 car accident, wears a realistic acrylic prosthesis, but she’s issued a challenge to engineers on her blog: build an “eye cam” for her prosthesis that can dilate with changes of light and allow her to blink to control its zoom, focus, and on/off switch. “I’d always given thought to using cameras to restore sight to the blind,” said Dr. William Danz, whose patient, Tanya Vlach, wants the groundbreaking device. “This is a little different, more like James Bond stuff.” The eye cam could allow her to record her entire life or even shoot a reality TV show from her eye’s perspective. Vlach said she will let inspiration strike once she has the device. “There have been all sorts of cyborgs in science fiction for a long time, and I’m sort of a sci-fi geek,” said Vlach, 35. “With the advancement of technology, I thought, ‘Why not?'”

Mobile computing expert Roy Want told the Daily News the technology exists. “It is possible to build a wireless camera with the dimensions of the eyeball,” said Want, a senior principal engineer at Intel. “You can find spy cams or nanny cams designed to fit into inconspicuous places in the home.” Want said the camera, which would be encased in Vlach’s prosthesis to avoid moisture, could link wirelessly to a smart phone. The smart phone could send power to the camera wirelessly and relay the camera’s video feed by cell phone network to another person, a TV studio or a computer. “You’d never need to forget anything again,” Want said. “You’d never lose anything. You could ask it, ‘Where was the last time I saw my keys?'”

MyFox Kansas City reported that a new Overland Park lab is betting its business on a rather unusual new dating model. They say instead of hitting the dance floor, first you need to hit the lab, roll up your sleeve and offer up some blood. MedExpress Labs offers confidential STD testing as well as other health care tests. And, they figure you’d rather know, then not.

“Over 65 million people have a sexually transmitted disease and many do not know it,” stated Elizabeth M. Gallup, MD, JD, MBA and medical director for MedExpress Labs. You can make an appointment confidentially online, or just walk on in. You don’t need a doctor’s order or an appointment and the results are password-protected and sent through a secure web site. All you need to do is give them a blood sample or urine specimen. Results are usually available in 48 hours. MedExpress is telling couples to stop in and get tested before grabbing dinner or going dancing.

Some people say a little paranoia is a good thing.

Unrelated Gratuitous McConaughey Photo

Unrelated Gratuitous McConaughey Photo

“Before I go out with a guy I want a full medical history and analysis, I want a personality profile, an IQ test, his university transcripts and a DNA profile that predicts future disease and likely outcomes,” said Misty Rein-Freely, a anti-bacteria cleanser sales rep, who likes to shower every ten minutes and will only eat irradiated organic soy-based foods.  “Sure it cuts down on my social life and most of the guys who sign up for a date and pass the tests aren’t much to look at.  But I haven’t had a cold in ten years and I enjoy spending time alone.  What’s wrong with that?”

In other news, Associated Press reported last week that experts say paranoia is more common than thought. According to British psychologist Daniel Freeman, nearly one in four Londoners regularly have paranoid thoughts. Freeman is a paranoia expert at the Institute of Psychiatry at King’s College and the author of a book on the subject. Experts say there is a wide spectrum of paranoia, from the dangerous delusions that drive schizophrenics to violence, to the irrational fears many people have daily.

Surveys of several thousands of people in Britain, the United States and elsewhere have found that rates of paranoia are slowly rising, although researchers’ estimates of how many of us have paranoid thoughts varies widely, from 5 percent to 50 percent. Dennis Combs, an assistant professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Tyler, has been studying paranoia for about a decade. When he first started conducting paranoia studies, mostly in college students, he found that about 5 percent of them had paranoid thoughts. In recent years, that has tripled to about 15 percent, he said. No word on whether the 46% of American voters who wanted McCain elected president over Obama are justifiably paranoid, but we’ll be finding that out in the months ahead.

(C) 2008 InebriatedPress.com

Comments Off on Your Eyeball as Webcam and New STD Dating Model

Filed under Humor, IP News