Harvey Walnut

What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence

Archive for the ‘AI’ Category

Mars Curiosity & Human Curiosity

leave a comment »


On August the 5th at around 10:30pm PDT, NASA’s Mars rover, Curiosity  should be just about touching down on the red planet.   It is the most difficult landing and mission of its type ever attempted.   The Curiosity rover itself is the largest and most complex ever built.  A robotic laboratory sent from planet Earth to planet Mars to investigate the possibility of life amongst many other tasks.

I’ve been following this mission for a few years now and when I think about the scope, importance and even the majesty of what NASA is attempting. I find it inspiring and uplifting.   I see in it the very essence of the human condition; a never-ending desire to see beyond the next scientific horizon. An insatiable curiosity born from an unlimited imagination.

To think our species has evolved to the point where we are sending semi-autonomous robots to a distant planet in such a short period of evolutionary time is simply astounding.   We may be still in the infancy of the 21st century but technologically where we stand today even when compared to the 90s is staggering.

Watching the animated simulation of Curiosity’s landing and the complexity of it leads one to contemplate where we could be in another few decades.  Landing human beings on Mars? even more ambitious interstellar projects?.  Look at the 100 year starship project currently underway as an example of the audacity of our thinking.   This project aims to achieve interstellar travel for humankind within 100 years.  It is led by an ex astronaut and backed by DARPA, America’s far out military science agency as well the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Now I just need Ray Kurzweil to be right about the Singularity and extended human life so I’ll be around to see it.

How cool would it be?

You can follow Curiosity on Twitter @MarsCuriosity


Written by harveywalnut

July 17, 2012 at 2:47 pm

Artificial brain loves to watch cat videos

leave a comment »

20120626-100547 p.m..jpg

16,000 computer processors helping to create and connect the largest digital neural network ever built and this system has been given the freedom to learn what it wants from the Internet. And what happens.

Nope it doesn’t become aware and decide humanity is a threat,nor does it tell us the answer to everything is indeed 42 . It decides, it likes watching cat videos.

Since man first discovered fire we have been pushing the boundaries of science and the reality of the human condition along with it. Today we live in a world where millions of people have access to the worlds information on a device that fits in their pocket.

Computer scientists have been building smaller,smarter and faster computers science Alan Turing invented computer science. The holy grail being Artificial Intelligence.

While It may not yet be HAL from Kubrick’s Space Odyssey, this machine still decided on its own it liked to watch cats. A step up from the old Commodore 64 I think.

Maybe the singularity is nearer than we think and I for one am very much looking forward to it.

Written by harveywalnut

June 28, 2012 at 8:15 pm


The Diary of a Retiree

A Word in Your Ear

Stories and Photographs of my travels, Tales of friends, family, animals and my life

The Past and Present Future

Ken Hinckley's Ideas, Visions, and Opinions on the Research Frontiers of Human Technologies

TED Blog

The TED Blog shares interesting news about TED, TED Talks video, the TED Prize and more.


This WordPress.com site is the bee's knees


You really are what you eat

TheCoevas official blog

Strumentisti di Parole/Musicians of words