I now know that humans actually would not work as batteries.
Nevermind, the matrix contains three of my favorite ideas. I know, I know, they aren’t original to The Matrix. But, they are still great ideas, so I was inspired to write them down in tribute.
• I know kung fu
• There is no spoon
• Beat the machines
What I mean is:
I Know Kung-Fu. (watch this 1 minute scene) There’s no feeling quite like the one you get when you watch a great training scene. Rocky running up the steps of the Philly Art Museum. John Candy locking the guys in the ice cream truck in Cool Runnings. Bruce Lee calling “grasshopper,” Karate Kid wax on, wax off. Yoda. You know what I’m talking about. Keanu Reeves jacking in and downloading active knowledge in a few seconds! This is “learning” in a shot glass.
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There is no spoon. (Watch this 1 minute scene, you know you wanna.) I’ve studied a little modern philosophy, and in my amateur opinion, this one liner is what it all boils down to. Wittgenstein, Heidegger — these guys all pretty much concluded that all there is, in reality, for us humans is language. Our reality is entirely proscribed by the words we have to represent it. Does language imprison us? No - I think this truth liberates us.
I used to run a training series at work called “there is no spoon.” Does anyone want to buy a phone system from us? From anyone? Hell, no. No one wants a phone system. They want happy customers, revenues, etc. Work with that. There is no phone system. Could you have turned that angry customer into a fan? Closed that deal? Always, if your words were good enough. (Well, almost always). Dig deeper, grasshopper.
Beat the Machines. This is the subject of so much great science fiction. Star Wars, Battlestar Galactica (best TV show ever - the remake), and The Matrix. It is a core issue in modern life: We create television, and then it eats four hours of average everyone’s day. We create email, then fight its addiction. Carbon emissions. Nukes. (Oy, do we really have to worry about Russia nuking us again? That was so 1982.)
I think Thomas Frey is directionally right, that half of all jobs today will disappear by 2030. As a red-pill kind of guy, an optimist, pro-reality, I believe that this change can be for the better, not just for a few but for most. But we do have to face facts, take a little pain, and rise to the challenge. We have to be ready for this massive displacement, by being able to adapt faster. This means freeing lots of minds. And since creativity is not a zero-sum game, the result could be positive - more ideas, more solutions, more abundance to spread around.
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This is the second post in a row that I ended with a reference to artificial intelligence threatening to kick human intelligence's ass. Somewhere, there’s a sexy Cylon snickering at me. Or, a creepy present-day robot, like this one. (thanks, Daniel, for the video at left.) Anyway the point is - let's use the technology we have to learn better, unlock the power inside, and save humanity from ourselves.