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Sep 10, 2015

A Brief History Of Star Wars Canon, Old And New — By James Whitbrook | io9

Posted by in categories: business, media & arts

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“When a franchise is around for four decades, it can get impossibly unwieldy to try and grasp its lore — and Star Wars canon is no exception. Here’s a guide to the origins of Star Wars Canon, the rise and fall of one of the most prominent Expanded Universes in fiction, and where the saga stands with Disney today.”

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Sep 10, 2015

Forget The Coffin: These Organic Pods Will Turn You Into A Tree When You Die

Posted by in category: sustainability

What a genius idea!

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Sep 10, 2015

What scientists say about Elon Musk’s idea to nuke Mars

Posted by in categories: Elon Musk, space

Elon Musk might think it’s a good idea to warm up Mars with thermonuclear weapons so humans can live on it, but scientists are raising red flags about the idea.

The CEO of Hawthorne-based SpaceX talked Mars colonization, among other topics, on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” on Wednesday.

When Colbert asked how he would eventually transform the Red Planet into a livable place, Musk said it would need to be warmed up.

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Sep 10, 2015

Scale of the Universe revisits “Powers of Ten”

Posted by in categories: astronomy, cosmology, physics, space travel

As a follow-up to Shailesh Prasad’s thought provoking video (just below this article), I offer two equally impressive visualizations of the scope and magnificence of our universe. These videos are the epitome of a teachable moment. And it’s fun, too!

Check out this simple, one-button interactive Scale of the Universe by Cary Huang. Simply pull a slider left or right to zoom in or out. It covers the Universe from 1027 meters down to 10-35 meters (from the entire universe to the Plank length and quantum foam).

Charles and Ray Eames

Charles and Ray Eames

Unlike the classic film by Charles & Ray Eames (more about that later), the zoom doesn’t really take viewers closer or further away. Rather, it compares relative size by allowing users navigate by magnitudes (a circle indicates each power-of-ten).

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Sep 10, 2015

This 3-minute animation will change the way you see the universe

Posted by in category: space

The Universe.


This 3-minute animation will change the way you see the universe.

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Sep 10, 2015

Humanoid Robot Thinks Taking Over The World Isn’t Worth the Effort

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Bina48’s responses were both intelligent and unpredictable.


Advanced social robot Bina48 sometimes feels like a “living puppet”.

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Sep 10, 2015

20 Things You Didn’t Know About… Immortality

Posted by in category: life extension

Humans continue to seek after it, but other life forms have already achieved it.

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Sep 10, 2015

When robots start acting like humans you can expect the worst

Posted by in categories: entertainment, robotics/AI

Corporations aren’t inherently evil, they’re only as greedy as the humans behind them. It’s the same thing with robots. Robots have no emotions—they’re just a pile of metal, screws and circuits—but they will be as mean, selfish, and avaricious as the people programming them.

Wire Cutters is a brilliantly crafted student film directed and animated by Jack Anderson. It tells the story of two robots from rival mining companies that meet by chance in a desolate planet.

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Sep 10, 2015

Transhumanists are on a quest to discover eternal life. Is the citizen science they use the future of technology?

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, life extension, transhumanism

Interesting article in The Telegraph on biohacking and recent Grindfest, where the Immortality Bus stopped:


Immortality aside, DIY “bio-hacking” could provide solutions to everyday problems, despite the risks involved.

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Sep 10, 2015

Blockchain & Artificial Intelligence

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, electronics, entertainment, existential risks, internet, lifeboat, robotics/AI, security

A piece I wrote recently about blockchain & AI, and how I see the Lifeboat Foundation as a crucial component in a bright future.


Blockchain technology could lead to an AI truly reminiscent of the human brain, with less of its frailties, and more of its strengths. Just as a brain is not inherently dictated by a single neuron, neither is the technology behind bitcoin. The advantage (and opportunity) in this sense, is the advent of an amalgamation of many nodes bridged together to form an overall, singular function. This very much resembles the human brain (just as billions of neurons and synapses work in unison). If we set our sights on the grander vision of things, humans could accomplish great things if we utilize this technology to create a truly life-like Artificial Intelligence. At the same time, we need to keep in mind the dangers of such an intelligence being built upon a faultless system that has no single point of failure.

Just as any technology has upsides and corresponding downsides, this is no exception. The advantages of this technology are seemingly endless. In the relevant sense, it has the ability to create internet services without the same downfalls exploited in the TV show ‘Mr. Robot,’ where a hacker group named “fsociety” breached numerous data centers and effectively destroyed every piece of data the company held, causing worldwide ramifications across all of society. Because blockchain technology ensures no centralized data storage (by using all network users as nodes to spread information), it can essentially be rendered impossible to take down. Without a single targeted weak point, this means a service that, in the right hands, doesn’t go offline from heavy loads, which speeds up as more people use it, has inherent privacy/security safeguards, and unique features that couldn’t be achieved with conventional technology. In the wrong hands, however, this could be outright devastation. Going forward, we must tread lightly and not forget to keep tabs on this technology, as it could run rampant and destroy society as we know it.

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