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Artisan Robots with AI Smarts Will Juggle Tasks, Choose Tools, Mix and Match Recipes and Even Order Materials – All Without Human Help

Failure of a machine in a factory can shut it down. Lost production can cost millions of dollars per day. Component failures can devastate factories, power plants and battlefield equipment.

To return to operation, skilled technicians use all the tools in their kit – machining, bending, welding and surface treating, making just the right part as quickly and as accurately as possible. But there’s a declining number of technicians with the right skills, and the quality of things made by hand is subject to the skills and mood of the artisan on the day the part is made.

Both problems could soon be solved by artificially intelligent robotic technicians. These systems can take measurements; shape, cut or weld parts using varied tools; pass parts to specialized equipment; and even purchase needed materials – all without human intervention. Known as hybrid autonomous manufacturing, this process involves automated systems that seamlessly use multiple tools and techniques to build high-quality components where and when they are needed.

I am a professor of metallurgical engineering. My colleagues and I design the recipes to make materials and components with just the right internal structure to create properties like strength and fracture resistance. With a network of colleagues at Ohio State and other universities, I have been developing a plan to give birth to these autonomous artisans.

How things are made

Components are either mass-produced or custom-made.

Most things people touch daily have been mass-produced. Quality is assured by using well-honed processes based on testing and monitoring large numbers of parts and assuring the process is done the same way every time.

Custom fabrication – making components on demand – is often essential, sometimes to conform to a patient’s specific anatomy or to replace aircraft landing gear that was forged and is no longer being made. Processes for making metallic parts – material removal, deposition, deformation, transformation, inspection – can all be done with small tools, with incremental actions rather than the kind of bulk processes, usually with big tools and dies, used in mass production.

Automation has long been a part of mass production, which includes sophisticated robots that handle parts and weld on automobile assembly lines. Additive manufacturing, often referred to as 3D printing, is increasingly being used with a variety of materials to make components.

Now in development are robotic blacksmiths – robots that can hammer metallic parts into shape instead of cutting, building up or molding them.

Robotic arms reach into the frame of a car being manufactured

Robots have been building cars for decades, but they typically carry out simple, repetitive tasks that don’t require decision-making. Lenny Kuhne/Unsplash

Automated customization – not an oxymoron

To automate custom fabrication, my colleagues and I are developing an automated suite of tools that can carry out all the steps for making a wide range of components, using multiple processes without human intervention. Sensors will also be central to hybrid autonomous manufacturing to control the processes and maintain and assure quality.

Such autonomous manufacturing systems will make the myriad decisions needed to create a component of the right strength, size and surface finish. Artificial intelligence will be required to handle the enormous number of choices of materials, machine settings and process sequences. Rather than finding a mass production recipe and never deviating, these autonomous manufacturing systems will choose from a very large set of possible recipes to create parts, and will have the intelligence to assure that the chosen path produces components with the appropriate material properties.

Robots could either position small tools on manufactured component or transfer the component from one piece of equipment to another. A fully autonomous system could manufacture a wide range of products with a versatile set of tools. The systems could source materials and possibly even send work out to specialized cutting and deformation tools, just like a human artisan.

The production rate of such systems would not rival those of mass production, but because robots can work continuously they can be more productive than human technicians are. Data from sensors provide a digital record of all the steps and processes with critical temperatures, machine settings and even images. This record can assure quality by, for example, making sure the material was deformed the right amount and cracks were not produced during the process and covered up.

Manufacturing at or near the operating room is one example of a process that can be enabled with hybrid autonomous manufacturing. Often when patients with bone fractures undergo trauma surgery, metallic plates of varied shapes are required to hold bones together for healing. These are often created in the operating room, where the surgeon bends plates to fit the patient, sometimes using a 3D-printed model created from medical images of the patient as a form to bend the metal against.

Bending by hand is slow and imprecise, and stressing the plate in the wrong place can cause it to fracture. A robotic technician could cut and bend and finish a plate before surgery. Patients do better and save money if they spend less time in the hospital.

The road to robotic artisans

Numerous companies are now showing the way forward in autonomous manufacturing, including three venture-funded startups. FormLogic is developing automated high-quality machine shops. Path Robotics is putting the skills of a welder into a robot. And Machina Labs is out to create robotic blacksmiths. Other companies are developing systems to automate design and logistics.

Hybridization – the ability to carry out different tasks in different ways with multiple tools – is the next step. The key pieces of hybrid autonomous manufacturing exist now, and fully autonomous systems could be common in a decade. Companies adopting this approach to custom fabrication will need to draw on a new generation of students with the skills to combine these technologies.

The investments proposed in the United States Innovation and Competition Act passed by the Senate on June 8, 2021, and those in the Biden administration’s proposed American Jobs Plan could support the development of these kinds of advanced manufacturing technologies. Funds for the development of advanced manufacturing technologies and the associated skills base could make U.S. manufacturing more competitive.

This article is republished from The Conversation, a nonprofit news site dedicated to sharing ideas from academic experts. It was written by: , The Ohio State University

About the Author
Glenn S. Daehn has received funding from the National Science Foundation and serves on the Advisory Board of FormLogic.




Simulation Theory and “A Glitch in the Matrix”

I recently saw the documentary, “Glitch in the Matrix,” where filmmaker Rodney Ascher asks the question “are we living in a simulation?”  He includes film footage of Nick Bostrom, and Philip K. Dick, as well as others intrigued by this idea.  Here are some highlights from the documentary, from my perspective.

Philip K. Dick and the Mandela Effect

I’d been looking forward to see “Glitch in the Matrix,” since I’d heard that it references the Mandela Effect.  One of the highlights for me in watching “Glitch in the Matrix” was the inclusion of Philip K. Dick’s 1977 talk in Metz, France, entitled, “If you find this world bad, you should see some of the others,” around the time the first Star Wars movie came out in theaters.  Philip K. Dick (PKD) gave this talk three years after having an extraordinary experience in his life on February 3, 1974.  After that experience and other epiphanies, PKD’s  interest in the idea of other parallel possible realities became much more pronounced.  In his 1977 talk in Metz, France, PKD expressed his expectation that some people will recall other possible histories.  In 1977 when Dick gave this talk, I was experiencing reality shifts and what would come to be known as the Mandela Effect, and I am favorably impressed by his comments about the significance and importance of people noticing alternate histories.  By the year 2010, the term “Mandela Effect” would come to be acknowledged as a worldwide phenomenon.  In his 1977 talk in Metz, PKD said, “We are living a computer programmed reality, and the only clue we have to it is when some variable has changed, and some alteration in our reality occurs.  We would have the overwhelming impression that we were reliving the present deja vu, perhaps in precisely the same way, hearing the same words, saying the same words.  I submit that these impressions are valid and significant and I will even say this such an impression is a clue that it’s in past time point a variable was changed–reprogrammed as it were–and that because of this, an alternative world branched off.”

While I certainly appreciate the view that abrupt changes such as reality shifts and Mandela Effects to what has supposedly ‘always been true’ might seem similar to what we’d expect to see if we were living in a computer-programmed simulated reality, the Simulation Theory itself seems more like a description of the way we sense and experience the world, rather than a comprehensive and complete true theory of the nature of reality.

NPCs and Nothingness

The “Glitch in the Matrix” documentary shows how some people have experienced a sense of vast nothingness, when going beyond awareness of others around them.  It makes the point that such an experience of nothingness can feel quite bleak.

I had a profound experience of feeling a sense of nothingness during the time I underwent a Kundalini awakening in 1994, which was part of my spiritual awakening.  At that time, I felt a deep loneliness far beyond anything I’d ever felt before or since. I recognized in that experience that any kind of existence disconnected from all relationships with others is a truly intolerable sensation.  I found my way through that experience by knowing at a deep level that I refused to be alone, and by knowing that other realities and other worlds exist, so therefore I would make contact with other consciousness(es).  It seems to me that the meaning of noticing such vast nothingness is to remind us that we need relationships with others in a very deep, profound, and fundamental way.

Some people believe NPC (non player characters) exist, such that some people are not truly inspired nor motivated, and “Glitch in the Matrix” presents this concept–along with the potential dark side of possibly making a mistake in treating others as NPCs in a given moment, which we can come to regret when we were not acting with kindness nor compassion. When I was a little girl, I had an experience where I was shocked to witness that people–including my own family members–sometimes move through daily like on autopilot, as if they are not fully and completely present and sentient and actively making choices in each moment.  I write about this idea that so many of us are running on autopilot in my book, Reality Shifts. I discuss the importance of getting past our masks and facades, and our tendency to think, speak, and act on autopilot.  We can all be ‘called in’ to be more fully present in our lives, and this can be part of our spiritual evolution, both individually and collectively as a species.

GANS and Human Purpose

“Glitch in the Matrix” presents the idea of GANS – Generative Adversarial NetworkS–where two (or more) Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are in competition with one another as they create simulations.  One is the FORGER whose task is to create human beings who look enough like humans to fool someone. Another AI system is called the INSPECTOR, whose job is to tell the difference between fake and actual people. Some feel it’s possible that the human role in Simulation Theory is to fine-tune and improve the Simulation according to this GANS process.

While I agree with those in the “Glitch in the Matrix” documentary that humans are certainly capable of channeling and editing inspirational ideas, it seems clear that without any underlying sense of meaning and story and relationships, these simplistic roles would seem to hold little long-term interest for most humans.

The Dreamtime and Plato’s Cave

“Glitch in the Matrix” points out that in the movie, “The Matrix,” Neo keeps his money and special things in a book, “Simulacra and Simulation,” which is a tip-off at the start of that movie that all is not what it seems. There is a long tradition within indigenous societies of acknowledging dreams within dreams, and ‘the Dreamtime.’ This idea of dreaming the world into existence, with layers and layers of dreams and awakenings is a much more ancient concept even than Plato’s cave, to the point that there exist words to express how seemingly real physical reality is just ‘maya’–just illusion

When Neo first awakens, and wonders why his eyes don’t work, Morpheus explains, “Because you’ve never used them before.” This matches what we know scientifically, as I’ve shared in a podcast I did with Dr. Donald Hoffman:  Perception, Truth, and Reality with Donald Hoffman.  Dr. Hoffman describes how our sense of the world through our perceptions is not truly real—our experience of true reality is filtered.  Donald Hoffman talked with me about his interface theory of perception, in which what we typically assume to be “out there” is not necessarily reality–but rather something akin to the desktop user interface on a computer. And just as we don’t need to execute machine language commands in order to send an email or delete a file, biological evolution has been proven to favor perceptual fitness over truthful completeness and accuracy of perception.  As Hoffman writes, “… to experience is to construct, in each modality and without exception,” and new findings in quantum physics and quantum biology increasingly provide scientific evidence to show this is true.

Similarly, in the allegory of Plato’s Cave, the true light of the world is much more brilliant than the shadow world as seen within the cave. When Plato comes back into the cave, he sees his friends are still watching the shadow play, giving one another acknowledgement for being first to spot what’s going on. This allegory of the cave reminds me of how anyone who has enlightenment experiences feels transformed when returning to everyday life. Quite often, it’s impossible to interact with friends, family, and colleagues the same as before the epiphany and transcendant experience. It’s also challenging, if not impossible, to explain or properly convey the experience fully to others.

Will We Recognize Our Reflection?

In “Glitch in the Matrix,” Jesse Orion expresses feelings of frustration when noticing he’s been stuck in digital worlds that aren’t going so well. And then when he gets out of those games and simulations, he’s noticed he was still stuck in a reality that’s not going so well, either. And he can’t help but draw parallels, since “the grass is dead on both sides. It’s like they’re ‘quick-patching’ reality,” because (just like in glitchy games), real life is not going that well.  “People are broken. Cosmologies are broken.”   This sounds to me like “glass half full” kind of thinking, where whatever we focus our attention on, we will see more of whatever we happen to be focusing on.

I notice that humans are becoming more capable of instantaneous manifestation, at which point our ability to maintain good emotional and energetic hygiene (keeping to good and nurturing thoughts) is becoming ever more essential to our personal and social well-being. We can start to observe how we can experience more of whatever we focus our attention and energies upon. Many of us have habits of dwelling on complaints, worries, fears, and observations of lack—rather than nurturing gratitude, appreciation, and reverence.

PKD writes about worlds which may be inhabited by just one protagonist, or who may have others who join them in their peculiar world, or those others remained in their own worlds throughout. PKD wrote on these themes of ‘pleuriform pseudo-worlds’ because he, “was sensing the manifold of partially actualized realities, remaining tangent to the actualized one—the one that the majority of us, by consensus gentiem, agree on.” I love how PKD was so tuned in to the way that it seems people can—and often do—experience simultaneous parallel realities. I love how this matches some recent experimental findings in quantum physics, in which observational devices even at the same place and time can witness different events. This seems to clearly indicate that there may be no such thing as one ‘objective reality.’

Another character in “Glitch in the Matrix” asks the question:  “When we know we may be in a simulation, how do we ethically deal with others—when we also know others are there like me, who aren’t simulations? How do I deal with someone who’s behind a false avatar, but who I really want to communicate with?”  He also points out: “Simulation theory seems to kind of solve problems, but it really makes the problems more poignant, and in your face.”

Again, this is such a perfect juncture to invite ourselves to find a story line we actually wish to inhabit—it’s such a great opportunity to care more about our relationships with other people, animals, plants, things, and the Earth and moon and sun and stars and sky.  When we make the most of our epiphanies through lucid dreaming and recognizing how our physical senses merely show us a kind of illusory facade that is not complete reality—we can become the change we wish to see in the world.  We can become more caring, more compassionate, more kind.  We can care more about our relationships with others.

Divine Awakening

“Glitch in the Matrix” mentions that PKD’s friend, Tom Disch, first suggested to him that his experience on Feb 3, 1974 sounded like “Enthousiasmos” by Elijah, and PKD liked the idea, and found it pleasant.  The experience of feeling inspired by God seems uplifting, and like it would have given PKD a feeling of spiritual epiphany, which seems to have been the case.

One character in “Glitch in the Matrix” points out that: There are fundamental metaphors we have about reality, such as “life is like a journey,” and “Waking up from a dream”—and shifting between ontological realities (sometimes quite abruptly, or with intense emotions) is a fundamental, cognitive experience—is “stitched into us.”

Yes; humans do seem to be wired to experience many levels of awakening, in order to discover many levels of identity within ourselves. Perhaps the greatest unasked question, and the question that potentially can do the most for us in terms of answering all our questions and solving all our problems is simply, “Who am I?”

This question of identity can enable us to begin to realize our true identity is involved with co-creating our experienced dream-within-a-dream; and also that we have many levels and layers to our conscious identity.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

I invite you to keep focusing on “How good can it get?” and watch the companion video to this blog at:

___________________________

QuantumJumps300x150adCynthia Sue Larson is the best-selling author of six books, including Quantum Jumps.  Cynthia has a degree in physics from UC Berkeley, an MBA degree, a Doctor of Divinity, and a second degree black belt in Kuk Sool Won. Cynthia is the founder of RealityShifters, and is president of the International Mandela Effect Conference. Cynthia hosts “Living the Quantum Dream” on the DreamVisions7 radio network, and has been featured in numerous shows including Gaia, the History Channel, Coast to Coast AM, One World with Deepak Chopra, and BBC. Cynthia reminds us to ask in every situation, “How good can it get?” Subscribe to her free monthly ezine at:
RealityShifters

 




Robots Are Coming for Millions of Blue-Collar Jobs… But Won’t Stop There

Some people find hunting for sport to be abhorrent, so hunters have come up with euphemisms to make what they do sound gentler on the ears of the nonhunting public. For example, animals aren’t killed; they’re “harvested.” And dead prey is not gutted but “processed.”

Corporate America has taken note of this verbal ploy and is now adopting it, for CEOs urgently need euphemisms to soften the image of their constant hunt for ways to kill jobs and funnel more money to themselves and top investors. Their urgency is that they’re now pushing a huge new surge in job cuts—this time targeting college-educated, white-collar professionals! Their weapon is the same sort of neutron bomb they’ve used to dispatch millions of blue-collar workers: robots.

But that term has a very bad reputation, so robots have been relabeled with a nondescript acronym: RPA, “robotic process automation.” These are not your grandfather’s old bots merely doing repetitive mechanical tasks. Sophisticated automatons armed with artificial intelligence have quietly moved up the corporate ladder to take over cognitive work that had been the niche of such highly paid humans as financial analysts, lawyers, engineers, managers, and doctors.

McKinsey, the world’s biggest corporate strategy consultancy, calculated in 2019 that the emerging revolution of thinking robotics would displace 37 million U.S. workers by 2030. Now, seeing the current corporate stampede to impose RPAs on U.S. workplaces, McKinsey analysts have upped their projection to 45 million job losses by 2030.

This is more than just an incremental extension of a long, slow automation process. It’s a transformative Big Bang, presently ripping through America’s workforce at warp speed with no public or political attention, and most of the vulnerable employees have no idea of what’s coming.

Corporate executives, boards, and investors do know, however, for they’ve been rushing furtively in the past year or so to implement RPA initiatives. The New York Times reports that a survey of executives last year found that nearly 80% of them have already put some forms of RPA in place, with an additional 16% planning to do so within three years. Yes, that’s 96% of corporate employers. Sales of the new-age automation software are booming, turning little-known providers like UiPath and Automation Anywhere into multibillion-dollar behemoths intent on radically shrinking the job market here and elsewhere. McKinsey, the world’s biggest corporate strategy consultancy, calculated in 2019 that the emerging revolution of thinking robotics would displace 37 million U.S. workers by 2030. Now, seeing the current corporate stampede to impose RPAs on U.S. workplaces, McKinsey analysts have upped their projection to 45 million job losses by 2030.

Returning to the hunting analogy, professional jobs requiring human-level judgment have been presumed to be beyond the range of robotic firepower. But, as one economist who studies labor now notes, with the mass deployment of RPA technology, “that type of work is much more in the killing path.”

The corporate vocabulary does not include the phrase “job cuts.” Rather, such unpleasantness is blandly referred to as “employment adjustment.” Moreover, terminations are hailed as universally beneficial—they’re said to “streamline” operations and “liberate” the workforce from tedious tasks.

Now, though, corporate wordsmiths are going to need a new thesaurus of euphemisms to try glossing over the masses of job cuts coming for those in the higher echelons of the corporate structure. Don’t look now, but an unanticipated result of the ongoing pandemic is that it has given cover for CEOs to speed up the adoption of highly advanced RPAs to replace employees once assumed to be immune from displacement. As one analyst told a New York Times reporter, “With R.P.A., you can build a bot that costs $10,000 a year and take out two to four humans.”

Prior to the COVID-19 crisis, many top executives feared a public backlash if they pushed automation too far too fast. But, ironically, the economic collapse caused by the pandemic has so discombobulated the workplace and diverted public attention that corporate bosses have been emboldened to rush ahead, declaring, “I don’t really care. I’m just going to do what’s right for my business.” While the nationwide shutdown of offices and furloughing of employees has caused misery for millions, one purveyor of RPA systems approvingly notes that it has “‘massively raised awareness’ among executives about the variety of work that no longer requires human involvement,” The New York Times says. He cheerfully declares, “We think any business process can be automated,” and his firm advises corporate bosses that half to two-thirds of all the tasks being done at their companies can be done by machines.

Conventional corporate wisdom blithely preaches that all new technologies create more jobs than they kill, but even those Pollyannaish preachers are now conceding that this robotic automation of white-collar jobs is being imposed so suddenly, widely, and stealthily that losses will crush any gains. “We haven’t hit the exponential point of this stuff yet,” warns an alarmed analyst. “And when we do, it’s going to be dramatic.”

Jim Hightower

Jim Hightower is a national radio commentator, writer, public speaker, and author of the books “Swim Against The Current: Even A Dead Fish Can Go With The Flow (2008) and “There’s Nothing in the Middle of the Road But Yellow Stripes and Dead Armadillos: A Work of Political Subversion” (1998). Hightower has spent three decades battling the Powers That Be on behalf of the Powers That Ought To Be – consumers, working families, environmentalists, small businesses, and just-plain-folks.




Japan to Use Artificial Intelligence Matchmaking to Boost Plummeting Birth Rate

By | TheMindUnleashed.com

Japanese authorities are hoping that they can use artificial intelligence algorithms to help the nation’s legion of singles finally find love – and most crucially, boost the country’s infamously low birth rate.

The move to resort to AI tech to play matchmaker for millions of bachelors and bachelorettes may not sound romantic, but one cabinet official expressed confidence in its ability to accurately match a wide range of potential suitors, reports Yomiuri Shimbun.

“We are especially planning to offer subsidies to local governments operating or starting up matchmaking projects that use AI,” an official in the cabinet of Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga told AFP.

While singles often have certain preferred characteristics in mind when thinking of their possible soul mate, the machine learning technology would ignore the stated preferences of users in terms of income level, looks, and age, and use an emotional quotient to match couples based on shared values, hobbies, personalities, and emotional intelligence.

The Japanese government plans to allocate two billion yen (USD $19 million) in the coming fiscal year toward various schemes that will help residents find love, the official added.

The question isn’t so much a matter of love and roses, but of the nation’s very survival.

“We hope this support will help reverse the decline in the nation’s birthrate,” the cabinet official added.

Japan has one of the largest populations over the age of 65 out of any country, comprising about 26 percent of the total population, per 2015 census data. Japan has both the world’s highest life expectancy and the lowest birthrate, with only 865,000 babies being born last year – a record low since records began in 1899.

However, the plummeting birth rate also means the erosion of Japan’s work-force. Successive governments have sought to grapple with these labor shortages and the increased public spending on the senior citizen population by raising the retirement age from 60 to anywhere between 65 and 71.

Numerous studies have also shown that young Japanese men and women are increasingly disinterested in matters of the heart, and are generally dating and having sex far less than in the past. Instead, women are increasingly committed to pursuing a career path and being independent, while men are also focusing on school, work, or pursuing their own interests.

The shrinking population is also a result of young people showing little interest in romantic relationships while they are earning low wages, according to Dr. Sachiko Horiguchi, an anthropologist at Japan’s Temple University.

In the absence of real changes to the material reality confronting young single people in Japan, she doesn’t see the matchmaking service working as effectively as authorities hope.

“If they’re not interested in dating, the matchmaking would likely be ineffective,” Horiguchi said.

“If we are to rely on technologies, affordable AI robots taking over household or childcare tasks may be more effective.”

Working mothers reportedly enjoy little support in Japan, where they are expected to fulfill their traditional roles of doing all housework while also raising their children.

However, even young people who have completed higher education and have high salaries are averse to new financial burdens and emotional crises, which also factors into downward trends in marriage and birth rates.




Musk Unveils Creepy Futuristic Dashboard That Shows What Neural Network Inside Tesla Self-Driving Car Sees

Tesla motors self-driving cars
Photo by Roberto Nickson from Pexels

By Jake Anderson |  The Mind Unleashed 

Elon Musk, easily one of the most audacious business entrepreneurs and tech mavens in modern times, has promised self-driving, autonomous cars for years now. Earlier this year he even went so far as to predict the commercial release of a beta fleet of autonomous vehicles by the end of 2020.

It turns out that prediction may have had a substantial foundation behind it because last week Musk stunned Tesla enthusiasts with a demo of the company’s forthcoming “Full Self-Driving” (FSD) beta. The presentation confirmed a major upgrade to Tesla’s self-driving suite and shocked viewers with a video demo of the beta car’s futuristic dashboard in action.

The test demo featured a specially selected trained driver but the most jaw-dropping aspect undoubtedly involves the dashboard that represents what the car’s neural network is “seeing” as it drives. Multiple glowing modules and real-time data monitors depict a full spectrum of the road ahead, highlighting pedestrian movements, parked cars, and unmarked lane dividers.

Musk himself calls the upgrade a “quantum leap” in the autonomous vehicles race and his Tesla ‘bros’ seem to be just as sold.

One driver featured in the video commented on the car’s first turn, “It paused to look, dude!”

Later in the demo, that driver expanded on the almost creepy, human-like impulses demonstrated by the vehicle: “I almost felt like I was still driving, because I still looked [before making a turn], and the car felt like it was looking, so that was amazing and truly mind-blowing how it was working.”

The neural net used in the new software allows drivers to engage the Autopilot advanced driver-assist mode on local and non-highway streets. The company released terse warnings about the use of the beta car, saying that it still requires constant human oversight because “it may do the wrong thing at the worse time.”

Experts note the risk of a haphazard release, which could result in drivers performing experimental stunts for YouTube videos. In this vein, The Verge described the whole spectacle with succinct criticism:

“Frankly, this looks terrifying — not because it seems erratic or malfunctioning, but because of the way it will inevitably be misused.”

Ed Niedermeyer, communications director for Partners for Automated Vehicle Education, issued the following statement:

“Public road testing is a serious responsibility and using untrained consumers to validate beta-level software on public roads is dangerous and inconsistent with existing guidance and industry norms. Moreover, it is extremely important to clarify the line between driver assistance and autonomy. Systems requiring human driver oversight are not self-driving and should not be called self-driving.”

In its publicly released warning, Tesla acknowledges these risks and the probability that dangerous rule-breaking and stunts are inevitable. There have already been fatal crashes involving autonomous vehicles and there will likely be more. As a result, the company says the Autopilot feature should only be engaged by attentive drivers who have both hands on the wheel.

Despite these dangers, Musk continues to aim for a 2020 wide release.

“Full Self-Driving is in early limited access Beta and must be used with additional caution,” the company writes“It may do the wrong thing at the worst time, so you must always keep your hands on the wheel and pay extra attention to the road. Do not become complacent.

Although many critics are expressing an abundance of caution with regard to Tesla’s beta rollout, it is widely believed by automotive and industry experts that autonomous vehicles will one day dramatically improve traffic, reduce car accident injuries, and could save millions of lives. The industrial automation and robot revolution will also shake up the job market and society as a whole.

So, what’s the verdict from The Mind Unleashed readers? Will you buy a self-driving beta car in the first year of its release or will you wait to see the fatality statistics?

 




Eternal Youth May Be Possible. Which Age Would You Stay At Forever? | Michio Kaku

Video Source: Big Think

Michio Kaku transcript:
Historically kings, queens, and emperors have tried to find the fountain of youth; they failed.
Ponce de Leon instead founded Florida, emperor Qin of China, apparently he sent his princes to look for the fountain of youth with the order “if you don’t find the fountain of youth, don’t come back.” And apparently he founded Japan and he founded Korea as a consequence of that.
So we have a long history of people searching for the fountain of youth without success at all. In fact, the tales of Gilgamesh, perhaps one of the oldest written tales predating parts of the Bible—the tale of Gilgamesh, well he had a mission and his mission was to find the secret of immortality.
So today we have two kinds of immortality: digital immortality and genetic/biologic immortality.
Digital immortality I think we will attain. It is an attainable goal. And that is to digitize our entire life. One day when you go to the library instead of getting a book about Winston Churchill you’ll talk to Winston Churchill, you’ll see a holographic image of him that has all the mannerisms, the speeches and maybe the memories of Winston Churchill.
In fact, one of these days your descendants could go to a library and talk to you because you have been digitized.
I mean think of your credit card transactions, for example, if I know your credit card transactions I already know where you like to vacation, what kinds of wines you like to buy and drink, what you like to do in your spare time.
Think of what happens if I have the totality of your digital fingerprints, all the videos, all the vacations, everything—perhaps I can create a reasonable facsimile of you. And then, of course, the question is: is that really you?
Well, to paraphrase former President Bill Clinton, it all depends on how you define “you”. If you define “you” as the biological entity with your memories then of course it is not you, but if you define your soul as entropy and information, that is, if you say that your soul is information that evolves with time via the laws of entropy, then you can be digitized—because your soul is digital.
The other immortality, of course, is biologic and genetic immortality. We have artificially intelligent systems that can scan tremendous amounts of data to look for patterns so in the future we will take the genomes of millions of old people and the genomes of millions of young people, run them through an AI system that looks for patterns: where is error concentrated? Which genes control the aging process?
For example, take a car: where does aging take place in a car? Well, that’s obvious, right? Most of the aging takes place in the engine because that’s where you have moving parts, that’s where you have combustion, oxidation, that’s where all the action takes place.
Well, in a cell… where is the engine of a cell? It is the mitochondria. And where do we find error buildup, entropy building up in a cell? And that is the mitochondria.
So, bingo, we now know more or less where to look when you look for the build-up of error in a cell, because that’s what aging is.
Aging is the build-up of error, cellular error, biological error, genetic error, error. Entropy, that’s what aging is.
Now, if you take a look at the Greenland shark, the Greenland shark has one of the world’s records for a vertebrate that lives so long you could barely measure it. By looking at the eye, the eye of the Greenland shark, you’re looking at the layers, they add layers once a year just like tree rings and you can actually date the life of a Greenland shark. The ones they’ve looked at so far are over 400 years old.
And so we already have examples of vertebrates that have life spans far beyond anything that we humans can muster.
Now, we also have other clues, we know that telomerase, for example, can “stop the clock”. We have a clock in our cells called telomeres, they get shorter and shorter after every cell reproduction, after a certain point they simply unravel the chromosomes of the cell and the cell goes into senescence and eventually dies. That is the biological clock.
Skin cells, for example, reproduce about 60 times approximately, that’s the Hayflick limit for a skin cell.
But, in Menlo Park California they’ve immortalized these cells. We can now take ordinary human skin cells, apply telomerase on them, and they stop the clock; they simply reproduce forever.
Now, what’s the catch? There’s always a catch someplace.
The catch is that cancer cells also use telomerase on the way to immortality.



The Illusion of Time – Are We a SLAVE to Something That Doesn’t Exist?

Why bother being concerned about running out of time, if time doesn’t exist to begin with?

The idea that time is an illusion counts among one of the most highly debated theories of our time.That said, the idea that time is merely a manmade construct – seconds, minutes, hours, days, and so on might become more plausible when looking at this one (very crude) but obvious example.

Daylight Saving Time!

How is it that a group of individuals (i.e. Governments) can decide whether to implement what has become known as daylight saving time (DST), and just like magic our entire lives conform around a set time that was simply constructed by agreement?

This to me is probably one of the most obvious, though over simplified examples of how the notion of time is completely flexible, malleable and certainly relative to those who decide to observe its rules, or not!

Moreover, what if the illusion of time makes even more sense if we’re living in a simulated universe?

In this episode of Conscious Commentary, we use this idea as a jumping off point to show evidence that time may not be as fixed as we think!

alexisheadshotv2Alexis Brooks is the #1 best-selling author of Conscious Musings, writer/editor for CLN and host of the award-winning show Higher Journeys with Alexis Brooks. Alexis brings over 30 years of broadcast media experience to CLN. For over half of that time, Alexis has dedicated her work to the medium of alternative journalism, having researched and reported on the many aspects and angles of metaphysics, spirituality and new thought concepts.

This article and its accompanying media was originally created and produced by Higher Journeys in association Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Alexis Brooks, HigherJourneys.com and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.




Are We Locked Within a Simulated Universe and If So, Can We GET OUT?

simulated universe

The reality of a simulated universe is gaining widespread attention from conventional science. But if this is so, are we stuck withiin this matrix or do we have a choice?

Is reality nothing more than a simulated universe – a construct designed by some “other” super intelligence that has the ability to lock us in to a Matrix like environment? Or nothing more than a program that we collectively agree to keep running? What if it’s both?

These are among the questions I posed to quantum researcher, speaker and author Sonia Barrett. Some of what she had to say may surprise you, raise an eyebrow or two or make you say – “Ah, now I understand.”

Either way, Sonia sheds light on this elusive but intriguing topic like none other…have a listen.

Download the audio version and get important links from this episode HERE

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alexisheadshotv2Alexis Brooks is the #1 best-selling author of Conscious Musings, writer/editor for CLN and host of the award-winning show Higher Journeys with Alexis Brooks. Alexis brings over 30 years of broadcast media experience to CLN. For over half of that time, Alexis has dedicated her work to the medium of alternative journalism, having researched and reported on the many aspects and angles of metaphysics, spirituality and new thought concepts.

This article and its accompanying media was originally created and produced by Higher Journeys in association Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Alexis Brooks, HigherJourneys.com and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.




World’s First Bank Entirely Run By Robots Opens Up In China

By Aaron Kesel | Activist Post

China’s second-largest lender by assets, China Construction Bank (CCB), has opened a Shanghai branch run entirely by robots that greet customers and manage accounts, Mirror reported.

The bank doesn’t just utilize robots; it’s packed full with new technology including virtual reality, artificial intelligence and facial recognition.

According to the South China Morning Post, as soon as customers walk through the front door they are met by a robot that asks and answers questions using voice recognition.

The financial institution in Jiujiang Road in Huangpu district is equipped with several smart automated tellers capable of a range of services including opening an account, money transfer, foreign exchange, gold investment and the issue of wealth management products.

The bank states that the new setup will be able to handle 90 percent of the cash and non-cash demands of traditional banking outlets.

Although for wealthy clients, that other 10% in need of human help, a private room is reserved for remote chats with client relationship managers via direct video feed.

He Fei, a senior researcher at Bank of Communications in Shanghai, stated the bank would be a good test ground.

Unstaffed services can solve repeated and standard demands from mass clients.

But human bankers are still needed to offer professional advices, to serve the complicated and personalised demands, for instance by wealthy clients.

However, the bank may be a little behind the times, as cryptocurrency now exists so there is no need for banks or robots that control them when you can have your own private bank account by setting up a cryptocurrency wallet.

Then there is the other issue of robots taking away jobs.  SCMP notes that China has unstaffed convenience stores and cashierless karaoke booths. But the problem is bigger than China; worldwide there are talks of replacing various jobs with robots.

Recently, fast food chains like McDonald’s have decided to experiment to see if they can replace workers with robots. It’s hard to see this being carried out in every sector as there are several businesses that are vital to their industry that would not benefit from this, for example, freight exchange companies like Return Loads. While McDonald’s isn’t going to replace workers overnight, the transition will happen quicker than a lot of people think.

And that’s not the only business that the bots are coming for — they are taking over every aspect of society.  They are also headed for the retail business delivering freight and eliminating truckers. In fact, it sounds quite dangerous allowing a freight truck to drive itself, because there is one flaw to machines –  they break down. If the sensors break down on a big rig truck going  60-70 MPH on the freeway, that’s potentially 40 tons barreling down the highway unattended except by artificial intelligence. Automation isn’t a foolproof technology and it can also be exploited by hackers. I also foresee McDonald’s and other fast food chains and big corporations like Wal-Mart potentially being robbed as people steal products while a single human attends the machines.

Even doctors could be replaced by surgeon bots. Although, robot surgery has already lead to  144 deaths. R Remember, robots malfunction. Robots are also coming for the tech industry and factory work as iPhone manufacturer Foxconn is replacing a massive 60,000 workers.

Not even journalists are safe from robot replacements. All this sets a potentially dangerous precedent. We already have a lack of work – what happens when the great robot apocalypse occurs? Things aren’t going to be pretty. With robots taking our jobs, who will afford these products? One potential  solution is to shift away from a monetary economy and more towards a self-sustainable resource economy like the proposed  “Venus Project.”

I’ll leave you with a robot that wants to destroy all humans. Laugh it up now, but there’s a reason Tesla founder Elon Musk said artificial intelligence is potentially more dangerous than nuclear weapons.

Aaron Kesel writes for Activist Post. Support us at Patreon. Follow us on FacebookTwitterSteemit, andBitChute. Ready for solutions? Subscribe to our premium newsletter Counter Markets.

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11:11 and Artificial Intelligence – Is there a Connection?

Think you’ve heard it all when it comes to why people are seeing 11:11 and other repeating numbers? Think again!

For many, it all started with the 11’s (i.e. 11:11 on the clock) and now it’s burgeoned well beyond the pair of ones to include a whole range of double digits (22, 333, 44 and so on.).

So what’s going on?

I recently spoke about my own unrelenting journey with double numbers that was kicked up a notch back in late September when I recently appeared on Jimmy Church’s Fade to Black radio program.

Though I certainly can’t say for sure what is going on with numbers appearing more prominently right now to more and more people, I can say for sure that something big is going on.

Could that something big include a push to bring humanity into the age of A.I.?

In a paper published by Stanford University in 2007 artificial intelligence is described as: “…the science and engineering of making intelligent machines, especially intelligent computer programs. It is related to the similar task of using computers to understand human intelligence, but AI does not have to confine itself to methods that are biologically observable.”

And that’s where it can get a little (no, a lot) dicey!

Granted there are many proponents of A.I. espousing the merits of graduating mere mortals to a new level of super human. But equally valid are those concerned with stripping humanity of the “organic” and replacing it with its synthetic counterpart.

Further, some of those very same proponents, many of whom are a part of the mainstream scientific “elite,” contend that we may already be living in an artificially intelligent simulation; a cosmic internet of sorts.

One in this camp is NASA’s Jet Propulsion Labs scientist Rich Terrell  who contends that our creator may just be a ‘cosmic computer programmer.’

Terrell was quoted in a 2012 article as saying, “One has to think what are the requirements for God? God is an inter-dimensional being connected with everything in the Universe, a creator that is responsible for the Universe and in some way can change the laws of physics, if he wanted to. I think those are good requirements for what God ought to be.”

He went on to explain that this is the same as programmers creating simulations.

Put these two ideas of reality together, one that says we need to be living in a more A.I. focused reality and the other saying, heck, we already are – and where does this all lead?

Conspiracy researcher David Icke was also a recent guest on Church’s Fade to Black and during his discourse on the reality of A.I. he weighed in on what he called “The Double Bluff.”

“There is of course this agenda of artificial intelligence and connecting people to technology…We’ve got to watch the double-bluff. Where they say, ‘Well yeah we do live in a simulation. Let’s just make the best of it.’ We have to be aware of that,” Icke commented.

So with this brief summary now in our back pocket, what do seeing repeating numbers these days have to do with it all?

Let’s look at this equation…

If our universe is in actuality a simulation; a cosmic computer cranking out numerical code to create reality, and the veil that’s masked our understanding of reality is now disappearing, then we are now seeing what reality is indeed really made of…NUMBERS!

It would not do justice to present this as an overly simplified hypothesis, and yet in looking at this as a syllogism, we may just have gotten a little bit closer to  cracking the code on why so many people are seeing double numbers more, not the least of which is 11:11!

Let’s muse about this in greater detail in this latest episode of Conscious Commentary!

Get key links from this episode HERE.

alexisheadshotv2Alexis Brooks is the #1 best-selling author of Conscious Musings, writer/editor for CLN and host of the award-winning show Higher Journeys with Alexis Brooks. Alexis brings over 30 years of broadcast media experience to CLN. For over half of that time, Alexis has dedicated her work to the medium of alternative journalism, having researched and reported on the many aspects and angles of metaphysics, spirituality and new thought concepts.

This article and its accompanying media was originally created and produced by Higher Journeys in association Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Alexis Brooks, HigherJourneys.com and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.