Posts Tagged ‘Trends’

Twitter cuts (#140)

Anyone want to take a crack at answering this? (It gets more interesting — and perplexing — the more I think about it.)

July 23, 2017admin 68 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Apocalypse
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Fumigation

Multi-channel clamor recently, consisting of people telling me the XS comment ecology has turned into a sewer. This claim is beyond all serious question true. Laissez-faire has failed here. Some kind of ruthless torching-out process is likely in the near future.

If anyone has practical suggestions for restoring some basic level of comment quality, please pass it on. In the absence of anything neater, I’ll probably just start brutally culling comments that seem to lower the tone — from what it was a year or two back (it’s scarcely possible to lower the tone of what it’s become).

Any response that doesn’t begin from realistic acceptance of how badly things have gone to shit will be laughed at, then ignored. Please be my guest and try it though, just for the entertainment value.

No plans to make the purge retrospective. The current dismal state of commentary will be preserved as a monument to the workings of entropy, and a lesson to anyone extravagantly confident about the working of spontaneous order in micro-scale cultural institutions.

Yes, there’s been plenty of entropy on the posting side too. (That strikes me as an at least partially-separable issue.)

Currently, I’ve merely ceased to salvage anything from the spam queue unless it adds quality. Don’t bother complaining about missing comments. That’s scarcely started.

July 22, 2017admin 277 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Collapse
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Twitter cuts (#139)

This again:

July 22, 2017admin 5 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy
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Quote note (#360)

Fernandez keeps getting better:

Competition is generally a positive thing and we are likely to have more quality and lower prices not just in the realm of physical products but in a social systems and governance. Ironically the world may end up with a genuine multicultural society instead of a monocultural leftist diktat masquerading as one. Political tensions between left and right may even decline as the points of friction are reduced. […] But not every separation necessarily ends happily. The biggest threat to a successful divorce is the need by one partner for Other People’s Money to maintain its lifestyle. There is always the possibility of domestic violence instead of new opportunities. The best guarantee of a successful transition is innovation. Entire sectors like the media, higher education and public sector unions are already facing wrenching changes, not for any defect in personnel, but because they are predicated on models whose time has passed. Possibly the most revolutionary act a person can perform at this critical moment is to create opportunities out of the ongoing disruption.

(Divorce-talk is everywhere these days.)

June 21, 2017admin 113 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Realism
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Quote note (#359)

Is capitalism defecting from democracy?

The central reason why Western democracy is in decline is that its capitalist bedfellow can no longer afford the financial demands that full-blown democracy is placing upon it. History has shown that capitalism can adapt, consorting with a variety of political systems in the past 5,000 years. Looking ahead, it will probably find another political host to aid its survival. Democracy — capitalism’s host over the past century — is far more brittle. …

(Via.)

June 15, 2017admin 123 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Political economy
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Quote note (#356)

XS makes more of this than the article itself does:

Last summer, the AutoML challenge saw teams go head-to-head to build machine learning “black boxes” that can select models and tune parameters without any human intervention. Even game designers are in on the act—the team behind the hit game Space Engineers has used some of their profits to set up a team of experts to design AI able to optimize its own hardware and software. […] While this kind of automation could make it easier for non-experts to design and deploy AI systems, it also seems to be laying the foundation for machines that can take control of their own destiny. […] The concept of “recursive self-improvement” is at the heart of most theories on how we could rapidly go from moderately smart machines to AI superintelligence. The idea is that as AI gets more powerful, it can start modifying itself to boost its capabilities. As it makes itself smarter it gets better at making itself smarter, so this quickly leads to exponential growth in its intelligence. …

June 1, 2017admin 20 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Trends
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Sentences (#97)

Post-smug politics:

One of the most arresting aspects of the start of the Trump era is that nearly everyone, regardless of their political persuasion, seems convinced that their side is losing.

Perhaps because the thing that’s winning is unrecognizable? Partly its the rise of China, partly its Capital phase-transition, and partly its the messy stage of collapse. In any case, it looks like the signature of the Outside.

April 27, 2017admin 23 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Trends
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Twitter cuts (#129)

This is where we are now.

April 14, 2017admin 41 Comments »
FILED UNDER :History
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Twitter cuts (#128)

If Web 2.0 is already bringing everything crashing down, Web 3.0 is going to finish the job.

April 13, 2017admin 17 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Internet
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The Darkness at the End of the Tunnel

While not quite living up to its (superb) title, this critical leftist exploration of the NRx-AI nexus makes some suggestive connections.

… in the decades since, as the consumer-oriented liberalism of Bill Gates and Steve Jobs gave way to the technological authoritarianism of Elon Musk and Peter Thiel, this strange foundation paved the way for even stranger tendencies. The strangest of these is known as “neoreaction,” or, in a distorted echo of Eliezer Yudkowsky’s vision, the “Dark Enlightenment.” It emerged from the same chaotic process that yielded the anarchic political collective Anonymous, a product of the hivemind generated by the cybernetic assemblages of social media. More than a school of thought, it resembles a meme. The genealogy of this new intellectual current is refracted in the mirror of the most dangerous meme ever created: Roko’s Basilisk.

Stand-out line:

The further right Silicon Valley shifts, the more dangerous their machines will become.

Running the connection through Roko’s Basilisk is sufficiently non-obvious that Sandifer’s book (which does the same) clearly merited a mention.

(Park MacDougald does it better, though, 1, 2.)

March 31, 2017admin 69 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Neoreaction
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