Friday, 16 November 2007

Builder Reflex


Is it only me that instantly thought "Selext Textures" when seeing this picture from a DealsDirect catalogue?
Meh. Probably just me...

Friday, 9 November 2007

CyborgEthics

I don't know how many remember, but I started a blog on the subject of augmentation and cyborging back in the early 2000's - I don't know how I missed this article (and just now found this one) but it's precisely what I was saying, only years later... Okay - the original blog was on Arachnet and is now closed but I kept the idea alive, and seeing stuff like that makes me want to start it up again.

Basically, the central theme I am trying to work out is - how much of you can be replaced before you're no longer you? At what point does that change occur? Is there such a point? Or is it, as for every other philosophical question, just a matter of drawing your own line?

I mean, I use chemicals on a regular basis to regulate certain body functions like acid reflux control and sleeping pills. I wear mechanical devices to augment and correct my myopia, (glasses for short-sightedness,) and have had mechanical intervention (metal pin) to correct broken/defective body parts. (A snapped-off big toe, in this case. Don't ask... %)

Am I a human being who's been infused with metal and chemicals, or am I a cyborg with some human parts left? And before we get into mind/soul/brain that separates us from machines and animals, bear in mind that there are several sides to that coin that don't involve any inflated notion of "soul" and "better" or "worse" than animals/machines...

A case in point - when I started TEdADYNE Systems Blog, I posited that because nanotechnology is so incredibly small, a machine composed of nanoparticles could be built inside your normal body and only increase your mass slightly, and infact hardly be noticeable by you.

Such a network could be used to augment yur body and make it much better. It could also be used to map every particle of what makes you you, and thus paves the way for downloading your entire being to storage devices which, incidentally, are fast approaching more than enough capacity.

So then, if you get a backup of yourself made, and that backup gets run on a simulator or on some mechanical body, which one is the real you?

See, we still haven't got the hang of dealing with Internet malfeasance, and we're already on the verge of a far more slippery slope... Someone had to open a discussion, and I'd love to hear your comments on this.

Wednesday, 7 November 2007

Musical Tesla Coils Play Super Mario Theme

It's a pretty strange world, when the theme to a video game is one of the most well-known melodies of the day; Even more strange, and more magical, is that we harness lightning to play that tune for us...



Monday, 5 November 2007

The Most Bastard Telemarketing Evah!

Just thought I'd share. (Okay, vent!)

Phone rang, I picked it up, silence at the other end. Okay, it's one of those autodiallers that waits for a sound then transfers you to the operator.

"HELLO?" and I heard the click, braced myself for yelg at another operator about Do Not Call lists, and got:

"Hi. We have a great opportunity for you, unfortunately all our operators are busy, would you please hold" from some automated IVR system.

Now I'm supposed to wait online for them to spam me? Dirty dirty dirty crap tricks. I half wish I'd hung on just so I could abuse human operator...

And now I have a problem, because this could also qualify as bastard marketing...

Saturday, 3 November 2007

How To Steampunk

I think the Victorian Era of Invention was what really got me started into technology. Developed by HG Wells and his contemporaries into fantastic machines with filigree and rosewood, brass and copper, glass and crystal. And finally distilled by Walt Disney's inventor character Gyro Gearloose into the comics that I read before I read Wells.

So seeing people make high tech with love and Victorian craftmanship gives me warm fuzzy feelings. Steampunk is the name, and the most recent example of that craft is this.

Mind you, the guy that made this says in the video that the Victorian Era was the last time someone straight out of High School had knowledge of all the technology of their time, and since then it's become more complicated and difficult to master all the technologies in use - but I have to disagree. So what if he can't build the electronics of a keyboard? The premade electronics are a raw material just like sheet brass and fine oak...

Friday, 2 November 2007

A-Mart Sports, Albany Highway, Cannington

They have to be the nicest and most helpful people ever. Yesterday, I went to find a sports water bottle small enough to fit in the scooter's cup holder, and I was impressed - despite this bein such a minor purchase, the staff were helpful and very kind, there should be more stores like this!

So if you need fishing and sporting gear, and you want to enjoy the experience, try this place. No, there is no payment involved here, I just genuinely found the whole experience to be great!

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