Τρίτη, 25 Οκτωβρίου 2011

Hypercomputation and Economics

I have been thinking for many years why economists usually fail to make any reliable predictions. And when one does make some reliable predictions, then she is considered phenomenal! But if economics is to be considered a science, then it should be able to make reliable predictions, otherwise it is completely worthless. First of all economics is a social science. Thus, in order  to make trustworthy predictions, one must ensure that an economic system is computable and, why not, deterministic. Economics systems consist of agents (ordinary people) that interact and create the world we see around us. But how can be so sure that the behavior of these agents is computable? In fact we are not and, furthermore, we shouldn't! One of the basic ideas of hypercomputation is that the human mind, ergo our agents, has capabilities computational, hypercomputational, and paracomputational (i.e., abilities that lie outside computation as we presently know it). In different words, economics is bound to fail unless economic theoreticians will not adopt a different way of thinking.

Τετάρτη, 7 Σεπτεμβρίου 2011

The universe as a quantum computer

The other day I was skimming through Lee Smolin's The Trouble with Physics. On pages 317-138 one can read the following:
In the context of quantum gravity, it resulted in a new approach to quantum cosmology, made by Fotini Markopoulou and her collaborators. Markopoulou emphasized that describing the exchange of information between different subsystems is the same as describing the causal structure that limits which system can influence each other. She thus found that a universe can be described as a quantum computer, with a dynamically generated logic.
With all due respect, the idea that the universe is a computer was put forth by Konrad Zuse in his Rechnender Raum.  Furthemore, Zuse's ideas form in a way the basis of digital philosophy. Whether the universe is a computer or not is another discussion that I have addressed briefly in an older post.

Κυριακή, 29 Μαΐου 2011

New Worlds of Computation 2011

The second workshop New Worlds of Computation, which was organized by the Laboratoire d'Informatique Fondamentale d'Orléans, took place in Orléans from May 23 till May 24. A number of researchers, mostly from France, gathered and presented their work and ideas regarding computation. Françoise Chatelin talked about the necessity to use mathematical tools in computability theory that have been largely ignored until now. Obviously, such a mathematical tools include fuzzy sets, quaternions, etc. Sama Goliaei talked about her work in optical computing. Mike Stannett talked about his joint-work in cosmological computation (i.e., the exploitation of the properties of the space-time to perform hard and "impossible" computations).  Yaroslav D. Sergeyev presented his "numbering system of infinity" and its use in computation (a possibility that was mentioned in my book on hypercomputation). My talk was about vagueness and its use in computation. Unfortunately, some speakers were not talking loudly so I missed (most of ) their  talks. Below is a picture that was taken just after the launch break:
Unfortunately, it was not possible to stay one more day, but my overall impression was more than positive! Jérôme Durand-Lose, our host and organizer of NWC 2011, talked about his plans to make NWC a biennial event with formal proceedings, etc. I believe this is wonderful idea and I wish him all the best in this endeavor.

Σάββατο, 28 Μαΐου 2011

Commercial Quantum Computer

D-Wave, a Canadian technology company, has announced that they have sold their first commercial quantum computer to Lockheed Martin Corporation. The intriguing thing about D-Waves technology is that they were claiming to use the technology Tien D. Kieu has used in his adiabatic quantum computing method, which is a hypercomputational method.

 

Παρασκευή, 13 Μαΐου 2011

Building a brain?

Today Spiegel Online International posted an article entitled Researchers Hope to Build a Brain. The article discusses the efforts of the Blue Brain Project team (the article wrongly states that the team's name is Human Brain Project). The problem is that the article as well as the people involved with this project use the terms simulation and building almost  interchangeably, which is wrong. To build a brain means to actually construct something that will function as a brain, while simulating means that the team will write software that will function similar to bran. I can imagine that such a simulation could be implemented in an object-oriented way, where each neuron will be simulated by a very complex object. Obviously, all these objects would form a network. Now, how will they respond to external stimuli? Moreover, what will count as an external stimulus? All in all, even the simulation of the brain is a very ambitious project and I don't think we are ready to implement it. 

Τετάρτη, 9 Μαρτίου 2011

Technological singularity

Technological singularity is described in a recent issue of Time magazine. I read the article because I was curious, but I was disappointed when I read the following paragraph:

Computers are getting faster. Everybody knows that. Also, computers are getting faster faster — that is, the rate at which they're getting faster is increasing.

True? True.

So if computers are getting so much faster, so incredibly fast, there might conceivably come a moment when they are capable of something comparable to human intelligence. Artificial intelligence. All that horsepower could be put in the service of emulating whatever it is our brains are doing when they create consciousness — not just doing arithmetic very quickly or composing piano music but also driving cars, writing books, making ethical decisions, appreciating fancy paintings, making witty observations at cocktail parties.

The problem here is that somehow intelligence is equated with processing speed, when, for example, it is common knowledge that people perform arithmetic operations very slowly. Obviously, a superfast machine might help us settle some problems like Goldbach's conjecturem, but that is all. Human intelligence is something different and we have absolutely no idea who matter can become conscious…

Τρίτη, 25 Ιανουαρίου 2011

Does Nature Compute?

Recently, I received an email about a new book entitled Randomness Through Computation: Some Answers, More Questions. Although, I fail to see how computation would create randomness, the title of one article seemed particularly… intriguing—"What is Computation? (How) Does Nature Compute?" I haven't read the article, so I do not know what it is about, but I can speculate that is advocates the idea that the Universe, Nature somehow computes. Well, to me the idea that Nature computes is pure Pythagorean mysticism (also known as Pythagoreanism). In different words, it is my opinion that a chair, a wall or even a black hole computes absolutely anything. I dare to say that people who believe such things are suffering from schizophrenia! But why is this idea of computing is everywhere so appealing to many thinkers and researchers? It seems to me this happens because it is so fascinating to say that my cup of tea computes the trajectory of a spacecraft that is located millions of light years away. Whether this has anything to do with reality or not is another story. Physics is one thing and computation is another. Clearly, computation is realized by machines that operate in our physical environment. Nevertheless, these machines have been constructed by conscious beings that what to calculate something. Nothing more, nothing less!

A "Solution" to Riemann Hypothesis

Riemann hypothesi s is "is a conjecture that the Riemann zeta function has its zeros only at the negative even integers and complex n...