The Great Convergence

Some thoughts on Mou Zongsan and artificial intelligence, @ UF2.1.

December 3, 2013admin 10 Comments »
FILED UNDER :Philosophy


10 Responses to this entry

  • Kgaard Says:

    Nick … Speaking of China, and OT, I have been traveling in Chengdu and Shanghai and more than 50% of the alt-right websites I read are blocked in both cities (and presumably nationwide). But you have managed to stay accessible. How are you able to do your research with so many websites blocked out here?

    PS and also OT, I’m sure glad I went to Chengdu first. That’s a nice place, people-wise. Shanghai is just one big New York City/London but with every dude and dudette trying to sell you a watch. Yuck. Can’t wait to leave!


    admin Reply:

    Sounds to me like you’ve spent too much time on Nanjing Dong Lu. (Shanghai, of course, is the greatest city in the world.)

    The website blocking is mostly random (i.e. all blogspot and wordpress domain names). The Chinese Internet cops don’t care much about content in English, unless it gets pushy on issues close to their heart — and that would be rude.


    Kgaard Reply:

    Yeah, the Pearl Village area around the Yu Gardens. The gardens themselves are spectacular and worth the trip on their own. But dammit … I was accosted at 40-second intervals … sometimes 20-second intervals … by dudes with laminated sheets trying to sell me watches. Must have happened 75 times. Outside of that the place is quite normal. As noted previously, the pulse is just like Manhattan. On that basis I’m not sure exactly how one would go about making the case that Shanghai is the world’s GREATEST city. Perhaps I’m missing something? I’ve got another day here so if there’s some geographic answer to the question I can go look at it …


    admin Reply:

    Have a cocktail on the 91st floor of the Shanghai World Financial Center (bottle-opener building in Pudong), and reflect on the question there. Very few places where you can get accosted by peddlars, actually. The old French Concession area is extremely chilled.

    Posted on December 3rd, 2013 at 9:11 am Reply | Quote
  • Thos Ward Says:

    Thank you for the link! Awesome stuff.


    Posted on December 3rd, 2013 at 2:46 pm Reply | Quote
  • kgaard Says:


    Well, I didn’t make it to the bottle-opener but I did spend another day in Shanghai AND … more importantly … took a taxi out to Pudong airport. Jesus … I have never seen anything like the development that stretches between downtown Shanghai and the Pudong airport. It is unbelievable. Made me think of your mantra that China is the future of the world and the future of China is Confucian restoration.

    Overall I decided I like Shanghai. I would readily go back and explore it more. Whereas … Chengdu … I think I’ve done it. Seen everything there is to see. I am glad I went to Chengdu first though as it gave me a better view of the Chinese as real people. (The analogy would be Chengdu residents are like people from Kansas City, while Shanghai residents are like people from Manhattan.)

    Another thing I noticed is that there are more white people in Shanghai now than in Hong Kong. That’s kind of interesting. Hong Kong seems to be fading in some way. Perhaps it got so popular (ie crowded) that nobody goes there anymore. There’s a lot more room to stretch out and breath in Shanghai than in Hong Kong …


    Posted on December 4th, 2013 at 9:21 pm Reply | Quote
  • admin Says:

    “… and breath” — Now you’re being a little generous).


    Posted on December 4th, 2013 at 10:40 pm Reply | Quote
  • John Hannon Says:

    From the linked article about the launch this week of China’s latest moon rocket –

    “Chang’e-3, comprising a lander and a moon rover called “Yutu” (Jade Rabbit), presents a modern scientific version of an ancient Chinese myth that a lady called Chang’e, after swallowing magic pills, took her pet “Yutu” to fly toward the moon, where she became a goddess, and has been living there with the rabbit ever since.”

    Sounds familiar –

    Full version –

    Extended remix –


    Posted on December 5th, 2013 at 12:27 am Reply | Quote
  • Kgaard Says:


    That should be “breathe” with an “e.” And yes, I mean that metaphorically. Though from what I experienced the Shanghai air is not that bad. Chengdu was worse. But in both cases the smog is not as bad as Mexico City or Sao Paulo used to be. One big difference is the cars are better and the scooters are electric. So the smog doesn’t feel like it’s killing you. Actually it’s not even clear to me why the smog is as bad as it is given the quality of the cars on the roads in China (pretty good). Perhaps it’s the coal power plants or something. If so they could fix that with some scrubbers.


    admin Reply:



    Posted on December 6th, 2013 at 7:25 am Reply | Quote

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