What do all things have in common?

Neuroscience

Snake Oil Salesmen of the Neo ‘Wild West’

Ray Kurzweil
(click picture to show the video)

Who is deciding that this is the ‘medicine’ we need, not to mention what we want?

Here the reductionism is reducing thought to brain pattern recognition and the remembrance of them (named modules in this video) building hierarchies of modules. These hierarchies are mechanized by ascribing statistical likelihoods of contextual relevance and applicability to levels ‘higher’ up in the chain!

This statistical information (uncertainty is what they call it in other contexts) is also allowed to trickle down and alter the underlying levels below it to adjust their own set of probabilities into likely short-term expectations for their internal use in upcoming iterations.

By analogy and abstraction (that is missing from this video, but inferred) the model is then deemed (implicitly) to explain Qualia (qualitative consciousness) and all the while using tools that are strictly quantitative in capability!

It’s attempted in the video to make this ‘theory’ acceptable, plausible and trendy (for people who don’t know any better) by using some “algorithm which is similar to something called a hierarchical hidden Markov models” (06:27) as their supporting process! It’s as if we are in a submarine sending out pings to an undersea terrain and only able to recognize objects we have seen before!

Essentially they are using a horribly incomplete metaphysical foundation to explain our minds and do their best to convince us they can! Who says that thinking is purely biological (or even non-biological)?

If you can take anything from what I’m saying here, it is this: you cannot derive qualitative properties and relations from quantitative means! Even if at (09:07) it is said we can.


You Are Not Your Brain – Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz

Dr. Jeffrey Schwartz
(click picture to show the video)

Forget positive and negative thoughts and move towards understanding the more general differentiation of constructive and destructive thoughts.

Neuroplasticity and how it can, for just one example, cure OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) without drugs!

I’ve been reading this man’s work since 2005 and I’m just as enthusiastic now about it as I was back then!