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Bizzare & Odd

Did A 1988 Economist Magazine Predict A Bitcoin Explosion In 2018?

A 1988 cover story for The Economist shows a picture of a Phoenix, with a coin that resembles the look of today’s most popular crypto currency, Bitcoin.

What’s even more intriguing about the picture is the fact that the year on the coin reads 2018. It’s also interesting to note that the article is discussing a completely new type of currency, a global currency, one that emerges from the ashes of cash. How ironic is it that?
Bitcoin and cryptocurrency are now at the forefront of many peoples minds, a response to the current financial “ways” of the world. It promises to solve many of the damning challenges of fiat currency and the public enslavement  that comes from the way our money currently works.

Currency has always been, not just in my opinion but based on what we see in society, a means to control the human race. It has also been used as a tool to further widen the wealth gap, putting most of the resources in the hands of the “1 percent.”Will a new form of currency truly begin to solve those issues? Perhaps. This could be the stepping stone in eventually living in a world without currency at all.

The 1988 Economist article was likely echoing the financial elite’s desire for a one world government, or a new world order. This wouldn’t be beneficial for humanity as a whole. But Bitcoin represents something different it seems.

 

“This is a fantastic fundamental hedge and store value against autocratic regimes and banking infrastructure that we know is corrosive to how the world needs to work properly. You cannot have Central Banks infinitely printing currency, you cannot have folks with misguided and misdirected monetary and fiscal policy…It’s a con game.” – Chamath Palihapitiya (source)

And another great quote:

“It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and monetary system, before if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow morning. – Henry Ford

Technology Behind Crypto

Blockchain technology is the genius behind Bitcoin, and its very design is what excites many people. It is likely what has skyrocketed Bitcoin’s popularity. With this technology, all records and transactions are stored publicly so there is a public and transparent ledger for every coin and transaction. And it’s not limited to just currency, it also stores data, information and ownership records. There are also blockchains that focus more on privacy as well, for those concerned with that.

Ultimately, the potential for cryptocurrency to disrupt modern day banking is huge. Christine Lagarde, the head of the IMF, has cautioned that cryptocurrencies can displace central banks, and conventional banking in the long term. While this sounds like an issue, its not. This would be the best thing for our economy and humanity as it will stop a private company, central banks, from controlling the entire money supply.

There has also been no shortage of responses from multiple countries and heads of financial institutions like JP Morgan about cryptocurrencies. JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon has referred to bitcoin as a “fraud,” even though he believes in the blockchain.

The debates are endless, with, for the most part, the mainstream encouraging the public to stay away from Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies in general. It’s claimed that they are not real, have no implications, and are not backed by anything.While this is true to some extent, most people don’t realize that fiat currency, all currencies we use today, are in the same position. They are made up, backed by nothing and are controlled by private companies who control it.Any currency has to have the support of the people for them to work. If people do not put power into them, they have no value. So whether you look at cryptocurrencies or any other, it comes down to faith from mass adoption.

Most People Don’t Realize How Money Works Today

The fact of the matter remains, a small group of people who sit behind our entire global financial system are threatened by bitcoin. Their control, their power, their corruption, and more, is all threatened by cryptocurrency, and as a result, we’re probably going to continue to hear the slandering of Bitcoin and alt coins, in an attempt to steer the global collective mind away from it. But what’s coming can’t be stopped. We’re experiencing revolutions in all aspects of the human experience, from health, and now, in finance.

It’s long overdue that we change the way we do things here, and cryptocurrency could be part of that solution. It represents something far greater than money, value and wealth, which is why it’s so great.

“Bitcoin is money outside of government, controlled by the people who become their own sovereignty. Bitcoin will do the nation-state what the printing press did to the church…The use-case as stateless money drives adoption because it’s universally appealing and fills a void every human being feels in their soul: to be free.”  – Max Kieser (source)

Blockchain-based cryptocurrencies severely disrupt the modern day banking foundation by decentralizing the operation of the financial system outside of the control of sovereign states and the global elite’s power.

It’s a big topic, and I’m not going to get into whether or not the price will rise or fall as this isn’t really about making money and being rich. As the founder of Ethereum, the second most popular cryptocurrency, was quick to remind people not long ago:

“All crypto communities, ethereum included, should heed these of warning. Need to differentiate between getting hundreds of billions of dollars of digital paper wealth sloshing around and actually achieving something meaningful for society…If all that we accomplish is lambo memes and immature puns about “sharting” then I WILL leave.”  (source)

Cryptocurrencies also have huge political implications. For example, Russia recently announced its intentions to create a cryptocurrency so they can avoid Western sanctions and economic influence.

Putin has long been outspoken about the global financial elite and their ability to force others into their own will, politically and economically. This was his sentiment when speaking about the “imaginary” and “mythical” threats they use to justify their actions.

He began his speech by arguing that the oligarchic ‘1 percent’ that dominate our world “abandoned substantive and equal dialogue with other actors in international life, chose not to improve or create universal institutions, and attempted instead to bring the entire world under the spread of their own organisations, norms and rules. They chose the road of globalisation and security for their own beloved selves, for the select few, and not for all.”

You can read more about that here.

Cryptocurrency also represents the potential for a massive redistribution of wealth, as central banks in developing countries have plans to ‘get in’ in on it.

We wanted to dive deeper into blockchain and cryptocurrency in a podcast episode so we could explore the tough questions behind crypto and where it’s headed. Host Joe Martino sat down with Angelo Dodaro of Adbank to chat about cryptocurrency and blockchain

 

Is This A Solution? A Step In The Right Direction? Is A Currency Even Needed?

At Collective Evolution, from the very beginning, we’ve always encouraged and created discussions around a society we all know is possible. One where we transcend the limits of the human ego, separation, suffering and a ruling elite -this would include the need for currency.

Is this possible? Well, we’ve been engrained and have experienced the system of trading monies for goods and services for a long time. We created supply, demand, scarcity and currency, and thus we can uncreate it at any time. Sure it will require a shift in consciousness, but it is possible.

The idea that one has to spend most of their lives, working for the entire day, 5 days a week, to simply put food on the table and provide a roof over ones head is not necessary. How does it feel for you to live in a world like that? Regardless of what you feel is possible, is this what you want for the world? This will not mean people will never work, but should it be what we’re enslaved by to survive?

Personally, I envision societies, more consciously advanced than humans, who have transcended the need for money, and have figured out a way to provide for everybody’s needs in a way that free’s them from economic slavery. I believe this is where humanity is heading.

Going into the details is a topic for another article, but the point is, humanity is full of infinite potential, we already have the means and the technology to completely liberate the human experience and change it for the better.

“We should do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. It is a fact today that one in ten thousand of us can make a technological breakthrough capable of supporting all the rest. The youth of today are absolutely right in recognizing this nonsense of earning a living. We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian Darwinian theory he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors. The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living.” 
― R. Buckminster Fuller

Today, everything seems to be about the money, and making money. That appears to be the primary goal of major corporations and the majority of individuals. That being said, it is something we are forced into, and currently, money is a tool for exchange. But it’s not needed, and places tremendous amounts of limitations on our ability to change the world.

We’re constantly bombarded with what to do, how to live, what to think and what to strive for. Imagine a moneyless society, one that was free from the constraints of having to earn paper and metal to live. Imagine if we were free from our current constraints? What would we do? I believe it would provide humanity with the opportunity to grow, discover, and learn. We’d probably become a space baring race much faster.

It seems with our current human experience, we’ve become stuck in a cycle of repetition while we let our world burn. This is the reality that more and more people on the planet are realizing and as a result, on a collective level we are manifesting change, in several different ways.

Cryptocurrency and blockchain technology may be a start, from a financial perspective, but ultimately, I see humanity moving passed the need for any type of currency at all.

With our potential and level of technological development, anything is possible, all that’s really required is a shift in consciousness. Perhaps a governments or leadership who actually cares about, and has the best interests of the people as priority number 1.

Poverty, war, greed, economic slavery, and corruption are not uncontrollable challenges. It many cases, they are challenges which are created and perpetuated for reasons of greed, power and human ego.

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Bizzare & Odd

What Do the Blind ‘See’ When They Take LSD?

The consciousness-altering drug LSD is best known for its bizarre visual effects: even a small dose of the drug can turn the flat walls of your living room into something out of Wonderland. Objects bend, colors blend and intricate patterns cast a shimmer on everything you see. But what would LSD feel like if you couldn’t see?

In an unusual case report published in the April issue of the journal Cognition and Consciousness, a blind 70-year-old former rock musician has some answers.

The man, who is referred to as “Mr. Blue Pentagon” after his favorite kind of LSD, gave researchers a detailed account of what he experienced when taking the drug during his music career in the 1970s. Mr. Pentagon was born blind. He did not perceive vision, with or without LSD. Instead, under the influence of psychedelics, he had strong auditory and tactile hallucinations, including an overlap of the two in a form of synesthesia, according to the report.

“I never had any visual images come to me. I can’t see or imagine what light or dark might look like,” Mr. Blue Pentagon told the researchers. But under the influence of LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide, also known as acid), sounds felt unique and listening to music felt like being immersed in a waterfall, he said. “The music of Bach’s third Brandenburg concerto brought on the waterfall effect. I could hear violins playing in my soul and found myself having a one hour long monologue using different tones of voices … LSD gave everything ‘height.’ The sounds coming from songs I would normally listen to became three dimensional, deep and delayed.”

Mr. Blue Pentagon’s account is a rare glimpse into how LSD may feel in the absence of vision. Beyond a few Q&A threads on Reddit, the only other resource is a 1963 study of 24 blind people, which was actually conducted by an ophthalmologist to test whether a functioning retina (the part of the eye that senses light) is enough for visual hallucinations (it’s not), and didn’t include the participants’ psychological experiences beyond vision.

Understanding Mr. Blue Pentagon’s experience with the drugmay give unique insights about how novel synesthetic experiences through multiple senses are concocted by the brain — especially a brain that is wired differently due to lack of vision, according to the researchers from the University of Bath in the U.K. who published the report. Synesthesia is a rare condition in which one sense is perceived in the form of another; for example, a person may “hear” colors or “taste” sounds. This overlap of senses may ocurr because of cross communication between brain networks processing each sense, scientists have proposed.

As numerous anecdotal reports suggest and a few studies have documented, LSD causes auditory-visual synesthesia, an experience in which sounds and sights influence each other. Mr. Blue Pentagon appeared to experience a similar phenomenon, but rather than mixing sound and sight, it involved the senses that were available to him: sound and touch, the researchers suggested.

Still, there’s only so much to be gleaned from a qualitative report based on a single person.

“It is next to impossible to gain ‘general’ insights from individual narratives,” said Ilsa Jerome, a clinical researcher for the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) who was not involved with the report.

Jerome, who is visually impaired herself, said she is unconvinced that having a visual impairment provides any special insight on how LSD alters sensory processes. “But it might provide greater motivation or interest in the sensory impact of psychedelic compounds,” she told Live Science.

The brain in blindness

The details of what exactly LSD does in the brain are still unclear, but research suggests that the drug’s psychedelic effects occur because LSD alters neuronal communication in the brain. Specifically, LSD latches onto receptors for serotonin, one of the neurotranmitters neurons use to communicate. The visual hallucinations are likely a result of LSD stimulating these receptors in the visual cortex, the part of the brain that processes light, color and other visual information.

The first study to look at the brain effects of LSD using modern technology was published recently, in 2016, in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In that study, when people took LSD, the researchers observed that the visual cortex was unusually activeand showed greater synchronous activity with many areas of the brain. This connectivity was correlated with the complex visual hallucinations reported by the participants.

The visual cortex develops into a fully functioning system during early life in response to sensory information from the eyes. But in the absence of early visual experience, which is the case for people born blind, the visual cortex doesn’t develop normally. Instead, it rewires to process sound and touch.

This could explain the nature of Mr. Blue Pentagon’s experience with LSD.

“I expect that the cortical ‘real estate’ that would have housed vision does not do so in Mr. Pentagon’s case,” Jerome said. “So LSD may be doing the same thing with that area of cortex, but since that area is, for him, connected with other senses, those experiences — such as sound, touch or sense of self in space — are altered.”

Visual or other sensory hallucinations are only one part of LSD’s effects. The compound can cause profound changes in emotions and consciousness, all of which are reported by both blind and sighted people. The few studies that exist on the subject suggest LSD may be doing this by lowering the barriers between brain networks, allowing them to communicate in a more flexible way.

Original article on Live Science.

Bahar Gholipour
Live Science

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The hyper-realistic robot that is ‘indistinguishable from humans’

A ‘malfunctioning’ robot named Fred has terrified drinkers in a London pub by smashing a pint glass while talking about a ‘robot invasion’.

The hyper-realistic automaton, modeled to be an exact replica of London-based actor Tedroy Newell, sat down for a refreshing lager at The Prince Alfred pub in Maida Vale, in the west of the capital.

Unsuspecting customers were unprepared for what came next, with the humanoid berating locals before crushing the drinking vessel in his hands.

The robot, described as ‘indistinguishable from humans’, was created as part of a stunt to promote TV Series Westworld.

A ‘malfunctioning’ robot has terrified shocked drinkers in a London pub, by smashing a pint glass and talking about a ‘robot invasion’. The life like automaton (right), modelled to be an exact replica of actor Tedroy Newell, 55 (left)

Fred the Robot was built by five engineers from robotics company Engineered Arts, based in Penryn, Cornwall, over twelve weeks.

The team developed several hundred thousand lines of computer code and tens of thousands of components, including a sophisticated metal skeleton, silicone skin, real hair and solid acrylic eyes – all 3D-scanned from Tedroy to bring Fred to life.

To field test Fred, the London pub was rigged with hidden cameras and Fred was planted in the bar to see if he could beguile the public.

Relaxed in the bar, the android struck up conversations with members of the public.

Reactions ranged from startled confusion to fear and unease as they digested a series of weighty questions, including ‘what are your thoughts on the impending humanoid robot invasion?’

They were then witness to a scheduled ‘malfunction’, in which Fred began to glitch before dramatically shattering the pint glass.

Unsuspecting customers were unprepared for the Westworld stunt, with the humanoid berating locals before crushing the drinking vessel in his hands
Unsuspecting drinker were unprepared for what came next, with the hyper realistic humanoid berating locals before crushing a drinking vessel in his hands

Fred’s human-like interactions were controlled by Engineered Arts’ telepresence system, which uses inbuilt sensors, cameras and microphones to track how people interact with the machine.

The robot, who was created to engage in natural conversation in real-time as a human would, responded to their shock appropriately with emphasised gestures and punctuated speech, voiced by a remote operator.

Mr Newell, 55, who the robot was modelled on, said: ‘Seeing yourself in robot form is a very, very strange experience.

‘I’m honestly amazed at how realistic they were able to make it look – you can barely tell us apart.

‘Not many people have had the chance to meet their ‘robotic twin’ so it’s very cool to have been a part of this project.’

Reactions to Fred ranged from startled confusion to fear and unease as members of the public digested a series of weighty questions, including ‘what are your thoughts on the impending humanoid robot invasion?’

Fred was funded by streaming service Now TV to promote the return of dark science fiction show Westworld and was inspired by the show’s artificially intelligent ‘hosts’.

Emma Quartly, marketing director at NOW TV, said: ‘We are still a long way away from creating artificially intelligent hosts as sophisticated as those in Westworld, but to celebrate the show’s return we wanted to give the general public a little taste of what is possible.

‘Fred is the next generation in human-like robotics and so it seemed fitting to hand the show’s promotion over to him.

‘Needless to say, there were some stunned reactions, especially when in true Westworld style he started to glitch.’

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

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Bizzare & Odd

Robots are learning to conduct their OWN science experiments in an attempt to outdo humans

Robots are getting ever closer to outperforming humans in all aspects of life – even when it comes to learning about how the world works.

Researchers at Toyota are using artificial intelligence to speed up the discovery of the ideal chemical makeup for electric car batteries.

AI-powered robot arms engineered by the team place precise drops of chemical reagents in test tubes under the guise of human supervisors.

Over the next few months, the machine intelligence behind the system will take over the planning of experiments as well, according to Toyota.

Researchers said the ‘robot graduate student’ will decide how to modify the concentrations of the ingredients it’s testing without the need for human assistance.

AI-powered robot arms engineered by Toyota place precise drops of chemical reagents in test tubes under the guise of human supervisors. Over the next few months, the machine intelligence behind the system will take over the planning of experiments as well (stock image)

‘It’s automating not only the manual part of doing the experiment but also the planning part,’ Brian Storey, the Toyota Research Institute scientist leading the project, told Bloomberg.

Dr Barnabás Póczos, a machine learning researcher at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh who is also working on the project, added: ‘I can easily imagine cases in which AI would recommend experiments to try to synthesise a chemical molecule that you wouldn’t think possible, but the AI will be able to do it.’

Automakers have been investing heavily in developing new batteries and fuel cells to increase the range of electric vehicles.

Mr Storey said Toyota’s AI is helping to identify new materials for batteries and fuel and run computer tests to narrow down the field for simulation tests by researchers.

The research is in-part pursuing a replacement for platinum as a fuel-cell catalyst.

‘We don’t have a ton of platinum on this planet and it costs a lot money,’ he told Reuters in 2017.

‘Platinum is a great catalyst, but is there another compound out there that uses little platinum or no platinum at all?’

Toyota is investing around £25 million ($35 million) in its North American research arm, the Toyota Research Institute (TRI).

The Institute is collaborating with a number of US academic institutions including the University of Michigan and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and British material sciences company Ilika.

A number of other projects around the world are using artificial intelligence to drive research efforts, Bloomberg reports

AI designed to identify and categorise patterns has been deployed to identify wild dolphin calls from hydrophone recordings.

Similar software has been used by astronomers to detect the dull glow of planets in telescopic images of distant galaxies.

The discovery of the Higgs boson, the so-called God particle, in 2012 utilised an algorithm that searched through billions of particle tracks produced within Switzerland’s Large Hadron Collider.

According to Mr Storey, AI could one day help scientists boil down the fundamental principles of physics to reveal the secrets of the universe.

He told Bloomberg: ‘People have wondered if you could have the computer automatically figure out the principles underlying physics.

‘I don’t think we’re going that far out now.’

Source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

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