QC + AI = S

Quantum Computing (QC) + Artificial Intelligence (AI) = Singularity (S)


Quantum Computing – Computers using subatomic particles to superprocess atincredible speeds and with less energy–it’s similar to massive parallel processing, but in the case of Qubits, they can store more than just 1s and 0s (bits–a binary state), but rather can be both o and 1 at the same time (a “superposition”).  So for very large problems (“exponential scaling”), instead of processing (computing one step at a time), you can process all options simultaneously to find the very best (“optimized”) solution by eliminating all options that don’t fit the algorithm.


Artificial Intelligence – Computers simulate intelligence, using language, perceiving their environment, reasoning to draw conclusions, solving problems usually done by humans, being creative, and where they can actually learn and self-improve!


Singularity – A state of runaway hypergrowth from the attainment of computing superintelligence, where computers are able to autonomously build ever smarter and more powerful machines that surpass human understanding and control leading to unfathomable changes to human civilization. 


The Information Age is giving way to the Intelligence Age, and it is all ready to explode. 


We are getting to the point of no return…


(Source Photo: Screenshot from YouTube with attribution to the move, Lucy“)

Change Everybody Loves To Hate

I thought this saying from a colleague was really astute.

“Everybody hates the status quo

but nobody wants to change.”


How’s that for a conundrum. 


The question is are we more unhappy with the dysfunctional way things are or are we more afraid to make the necessary changes in our life?


I think that when the pain and dysfunction of the status quo are greater than the fear and inconvenience of changing, only then will people quite resisting and adapt to the new reality. 


Welcome to change!  😉


(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

G-d Created Evolution

Evolution.jpeg

So I’ve been thinking a little bit about evolution.


And I don’t see any contradiction between evolution and creation.


In fact, G-d created evolution!


You see, in His infinite wisdom and love, G-d made his creations with the ability to change over time. 


We are not static creatures, but we are able to evolve, adapt, transform, and grow ourselves, our species, and our world over time. 


But, but, but…there are fossils hundreds of millions years old…how could G-d have created the world less than 6,000 years ago?


Well, who says G-d created the world at time horizon zero–if the world was fully formed with trees and plants, and fish, birds, animals, and people–then these could all have had age associated with and built into them already. 


Boom…G-d just created Adam and Eve–was that from the point of conception, day of birth, or fully grown adult?  Similarly, how old is the tallest mountain or the fullest forest when it was created? 


Time is not a function of G-d who is timeless. 


And the formed world appears at the blink of G-d’s eye and it can disappear that way too. 


Similarly, we learn in the Bible how G-d created the world in 6 “days” and rested on the 7th, but who says a day is literally that.


Couldn’t a day as in 1, 2, 3, etc. be phases of creation…where a day could be anything from a split second to a millennium or even a hundred million years.


To the G-d who Was, Is, and Will Be–what is a day, but a span of infinitesimal to infinite time to create His children and the world to teach and grow them. 


We are here in a infinite universe enveloped by the love of a limitless G-d. 


Evolution is no more a constraint on G-d then time or space is–to the contrary, evolution is a blessing of G-d that lets things develop and mature from the image of G-d to the imagination of His mind’s glory. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Special Blue Bird

blue-bird

Just wanted to share a photo I took of this beautiful blue bird that I came across in Florida. 


This bird was something special. 


I couldn’t help admiring his amazingly blue feathers punctuated by the yellow around his smart eyes 


He wasn’t the only beautiful animal or flower that we saw there, there were many.


They all just left me in wonderment at the unbelievable beauty that G-d created for us in this world.


No one is going to tell me this is all random by evolution, and that there is not a profoundly wise and all-knowing Maker behind it.


Perhaps, we never really left the physical Garden of Eden, but being expelled from there meant more of a mentality where we have to work and fight hard to keep it all pristine.


Mankind’s inclination is to take and use abundantly almost without thought as to the sustainability of his actions.


– Cities expand and encroach on natural rural areas. 


– G-d’s beautiful creatures are in retreat and often in danger of extinction. 


– Resources are used willy nilly as we dig and dig, chop and chop, and burn and burn. 


– Garbage is expelled and piles up virtually anywhere and everywhere.


– Pollution fills the land, air, and waterways.


Eden is still here, but people must act more like angels and less like snakes if G-d gracious gifts to us are to survive. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

The Happiness Meter

The Happiness Meter

Ever realize that no matter how hard you strive for happiness, it almost always seems just as elusive.

There are many explanations for this:

Of course, it could also be that just because you think something will make you happy, doesn’t mean it will. Often, the fantasy does not live up to the reality, and so rather than achieve happiness, we end up disappointed.

Another explanation, from economics, is the law of diminishing marginal utility that tells us that more of a good thing, does not make us incrementally happier, rather the benefit and satisfaction that we receive from each additional unit of consumption is lower. Let’s face it, the 5th mouthful of chocolate cream pie is not as satisfying at the first, second, or third. And at a certain point, you actually will want to puke!

The Wall Street Journal had a brilliant piece on this that explained this from an evolutionary perspective–fitter organisms are more likely to survive and reproduce, so every time we make a positive decision in our life, rather than find happiness, our “happiness meter” resets to zero, forcing us to make the next positive move in our life to make us better, if not necessarily happier. In other words, keeping us unhappy, forces us into perpetual striving.

So while happiness has been correlated with our genetic makeup, life events, and values (New York Times) or even exercise, altruism, and supportive relationships (CNN), real happiness comes from living a life of meaning, where we find satisfaction in the journey itself, and not rely only on the destination.

For example, Buddhists understand that life is suffering and that we need to escape the hamster wheel of jealousy, aimless external desire, and quenchless ambition and instead seek to do good and find inner contentment.

One colleague (ex-army) of mine used to say, “everyday that I am not in Iraq and Afghanistan is a good day” and perhaps we need to think in those terms too, as we all know things can always be worse, so we would do well to find happiness not just in what we have or achieve, but in thanksgiving for what we are spared as well. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Pleasure At Pain

Pleasure At Pain

Why do people laugh and feel pleasure at other people’s pain and misfortune?

The Wall Street Journal (20 August 2013) reviews the book, The Joy of Pain, on this topic.

Schadenfreude is the German word for feeling pleasure at the calamity of others.

And we see people laugh, point, and otherwise gloat when others are hurting physically, emotionally, financially, and so on.

When they fail and you succeed, you feel strong, powerful, self-confidant, and that you were right–and they were wrong!

Feelings of pleasure at other people’s pain is partially evolutionary–survival of the fittest.

It is also a function of our personal greed and competitiveness–where we measure ourselves not by how well we are doing, but rather relative to how others around us are faring.

So for example, we may be rich and have everything we need, but if someone else has even a little more than us, we still are left feeling lacking inside.

Thus, we envy others’ good fortune and take pleasure in their misfortune.

In a sense, our success is only complete when we feel that we have surpassed everyone else, like in a sport competition–there is only one ultimate winner and world champion.

So when we see the competition stumble, falter, and go down, our hands go up with the stroke of the win!

Anyway, we deserve to win and they deserve to lose–so justice is served and that makes us feel just dandy.

How about a different way–we work together to expand the living standard for all, and we feel genuinely glad for others’ success and real empathy for their pain, and they too for us–and we go beyond our pure humanity to something more angelic. 😉

(Source Photo: here with attribution for Lukas Vermeer)

ROBOTS Wanted!

Good video from The Atlantic on automation and the concern about Robots taking our jobs.

From the 1800’s, when “the Luddites,”–British textile workers–protested the loom to the 1900’s where 40% of our nations job were farm workers and now it’s just 2%…the question is where does automation stop?

Very likely it doesn’t (thanks to evolution)!

As robots can first mimic and then outdo their human developers and as artificial intelligence gets more intelligent, robots are moving from farm to factory to white collar jobs.

Computers and robotics, once relegated to repetitive tasks like on the assembly line, are becoming good at winning Jeopardy and as a surgical platform.

The bar is being raised not just on technology, but on humans to retrain to ever more sophisticated thinking and communicating positions (from software developers and product designers to branding and communications specialists).

People are constantly evolving to think and innovate better and are in turn building ever more capable technologies to replace more human jobs and leading once again to the need for even higher-level human performance.

Progress–a never-ending cycle of outperforming ourselves.

Where does it stop–the attainment of ever-higher levels of knowledge and productivity leading to heavenly bliss here on Earth or perhaps large elements of burnout, breakdown, and potentially self-destruction.

I often hear people recalling and reminiscing about earlier, simpler, and “better times.”

The Wall Street Journal (17 August 2013) just had such an editorial looking to bring back the tranquility and idleness of hot summer Augusts, instead now replaced by more work and school.

At the same time, very few of us would really want to go back in time before all the technology-wunderkind that we have now and enjoy (many seem think more like you’ll have to pry that iPhone from my cold, dead hands!).

The challenge: Robots may be taking jobs, but we need to stay ahead and to master not only ever higher levels of human knowledge and skills, but also the good sense to reconcile with the technology blitz and be able to actually find the time and inner-peace to sit back and enjoy it all as well. 😉

Yes, I Mean No

This is a hilarious video of a social experiment.

This girl–a complete stranger–goes up to random guys and asks “Would you have sex with me?”

On the top there is a running counter–thumbs up or down–for how many of these guys say yes or no.

The final count for this girl and the complete strangers is 50-50!

The reactions of the guys who stumble all over themselves ranges from “Are you crazy?” and someone who actually calls the police on her to “Why not?” and “I will definitely have sex with you!” or how about this guy who offered up a middle of the road approach of “Would you like to hang out with us first?”

In a companion video, they reverse the social experiment, and a guy propositions random girls with the same cavalier question.

In 100 cases, he was rejected!

So are women more discriminating? Are they looking for intimacy while men are looking for a physical hookup? Or are men just driven by their chemistry, evolution, and species preservation to procreate far and wide?

While the girl chosen for this experiment is undeniably attractive, given the risk of STDs and AIDS and also broken relationships and even families, you still have to ask yourself are men’s brains fully wired on right? 😉

The Bottle Revolution


How many of you feel sort of disgusting every time you take out the trash with bottles and containers?


According to Earth911, only 27% of plastic and 25% of glass ends up getting recycled, with the majority ending up instead in landfills. 


This is one reason that I really like the new eco.bottles made by Ecologic, a sustainable (i.e. green) packaging company.


The containers are made of two parts:


– The inner plastic pouch that holds the liquid and snaps into the second part.
– The outer shell made of 100% recycled cardboard and newspaper (and in turn is 100% recycable again). 


These containers result is a net 70% plastic reduction!


Yet, they have the same strength and functionality of plastic containers, with comparable results in drop, ship, and moisture tests.


And companies like, Seventh Generation, a leader in sustaibable cleaning, paper, and personal care products have signed on and is using eco.bottles, and they have seen sales increase 19% with it. 


In a Bloomberg BusinessWeek (25 October 2012) article, the chief operating officer of The Winning Combination states: “The minute you look at it, you get it. This is a bottle that’s good for the planet.”


Like these eco.bottles, we need more of our decisions to be driven by what is good for us long-term, so this is not just a revolutionary green bottle, but perhaps a true sustainable evolution in our thinking and behaving all around.