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Yesterday's Science Fiction Is Today's Reality

  1. GA Anderson profile image86
    GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago

    I was a big science fiction reader. Issac Asimov was one of my favorite authors.

    Over the years I have been amazed when something I read 30 -50 years ago in a sci-fi book makes the news as a reality. Buck Roger's Ray Guns are today's lasers.  Or the writings that described computers, (30 years before modern ones), as simple If/Then, True/False operations. That kind of thing.

    I followed a link from Wil Apse today that created a flashback to Issac Asimov's The Foundation series of at least 50 years ago, (it was added to in the 1980s)

    Here is a Wikipedia plot blurb:
    "The premise of the series is that the mathematician Hari Seldon spent his life developing a branch of mathematics known as psychohistory, a concept of mathematical sociology. Using the laws of mass action, it can predict the future, but only on a large scale. Seldon foresees the imminent fall of the Galactic Empire, which encompasses the entire Milky Way, and a dark age lasting 30,000 years before a second great empire arises. Seldon's calculations also show there is a way to limit this interregnum to just one thousand years. To ensure the more favorable outcome and reduce human misery during the intervening period, Seldon creates a foundation of talented artisans and engineers at the extreme end of the galaxy, ostensibly to preserve and expand on humanity's collective knowledge, and thus become the foundation for a new galactic empire, but actually to place a society in a way shown by his calculations to bring around the desired outcome (the Seldon Plan). He also establishes a "second foundation" of psychohistorians, of which little is known, to build on his work further and to keep the better known "first" foundation on its intended course."
    source"Wkipedia - The Foundation series.

    Ok, not your cup of tea, right?

    But, read Wil's link: Robert Mercer: the big data billionaire waging war on mainstream media

    You can toss away all the Trump/Bannon political references, and skip down to the last half of the article which discusses, (in-depth), the British data firm SCL Group, and its purpose, and its American spin-off; Cambridge Analytics, and its purpose. Both of which were to influence electorate populations through legitimate, (mostly),data mining and AI enhanced algorithms designed to produce "media" that could and does affect small-group behaviors.

    *Note: this is a lot deeper than just the "repeat a lie often enough..." parable

    This is the process that Assimov wrote about as science fiction 50 years ago. The similarities of the data and mathematical processes seem beyond the idea of coincidence, or just generalities.

    And now it is real. Your facebook likes, or forum comments, (simply speaking of course), provide enough data for these firms to create a tool that will be designed specifically to affect your perspectives, (again, simplistically speaking) - and there is verifiable proof that it works. (as if Trump's election isn't enough proof for some of you).

    Anybody interested?

    GA

    1. promisem profile image94
      promisemposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      Considering how much data the NSA collects, it wouldn't surprise me if our own government as well as the Russians, China and probably some others have been doing the same thing to each other. They certainly have the computing power and data expertise.

      They just happen to do it more secretly than Mercer and his various projects to mold a U.S. society based on his vision. It is a new form of political warfare.

      1. GA Anderson profile image86
        GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        I can almost agree with that promisem, except for the competency and capability comparison. I have yet to see a government effort, (with the possible exception of the Manhattan Project), that could match the motivational force of a capitalistic objective.

        But as you say, secrecy might be hiding the proof that I am wrong.

        GA

        1. promisem profile image94
          promisemposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

          Have you ever noticed that almost every Hollywood movie that has the CIA somewhere in the plot shows them to be incompetent?

          No doubt our intelligence agencies get things wrong plenty of times. But we only hear about the failures from the politicians and Hollywood and not the successes.

          I am coming to the conclusion that government in general is no more competetent or incompetent than our bloated and monopolistic cellular, cable TV and health insurance companies.

    2. colorfulone profile image87
      colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      I subscribe to Cliff High's ALTA, he is also known as the webbot and truly loved and respected by many in the www truther community.   He is astute at data mining and future predictions.  He is all over YouTube as many people share his broadcasts and interviews.  Some people say Cliff is the smartest man in the world, such high praise.  However, he is super intelligent and honest, better yet, he doesn't have a political agenda. 

      Cliff explains his linguistics process here on half past human:  https://www.halfpasthuman.com/altaprocess.html

      SpaceGoatFarts(SGF) "This entity is newly formed. While references to Space Goat Farts have appeared within Terra, sub set Space in the past, the data set now demonstrates a need for an entity to allow for the growth of 'unknown forces of all kinds from space which are terra/populace affecting'. Includes non-earth based, non-human/non-mammal intelligent beings usually considered as 'space aliens' or 'extraterrestrials'. Created during 1207 clean up."

      1. GA Anderson profile image86
        GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        Well hell, Colorfulone. I did read your link in its entirety. Now I have a headache.

        GA

        1. colorfulone profile image87
          colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

          The force is real, GA.  You have the healing powers of Wolverine. Believe you receive.

    3. Credence2 profile image85
      Credence2posted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      I was a big science fiction reader. Issac Asimov was one of my favorite authors.

      Over the years I have been amazed when something I read 30 -50 years ago in a sci-fi book makes the news as a reality. Buck Roger's Ray Guns are today's lasers.  Or the writings that described computers, (30 years before modern ones), as simple If/Then, True/False operations. That kind of thing.

      -------------

      Trying to stay clear of politics for a moment, these kinds of topics has always had my interest. What about the history of those who lived in the past attempting to predict the future?

      Heinlein, Asimov and Clarke are considered the fathers of science fiction. I liked Clarke for his realism, i.e., "2001". Realistic portrayals of space travel as it could be realistically expected to occur in the near future. Just like '2001' was a leap above other sci-fi before, remember 'Amazon Women on the Moon'?

      I have yet to see a real 'ray gun', a hand held laser weapon that could incapacitate a man. The physicists of today say that portable energy requirements for such a weapon do not exist at the current level of our technology. Anybody want to speculate how we will overcome this barrier?

      I have been astounded by the Internet, a compendium of the sum of human knowledge. At the start of my lifetime, as a 'boomer', such a concept was inconceivable. Recently seeing a film about 3 Black ladies who were mathematical prodigies, working for NASA during the early 1960s, there was a mention of installation a a new IBM mainframe.  This is 1961, mind you, this miraculous machine came with a processing speed of 25000 calculations per second, well today any decent laptop operates at billions per second.

      Let's all have a little fun with this......

      1. GA Anderson profile image86
        GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        Now this is a 'discussion tangent' I can go with. Let's give peoplepower73 a shout-out. ;-o

        GA

  2. wilderness profile image95
    wildernessposted 3 weeks ago

    Although it is done (mostly) through trial and error vs a mathematical algorithm, the science of the layout of stores would fit well with Hari Seldon.  Great effort is put into where to place products, size of aisles and shelves, height of products and even the size of product containers. 

    It was quite interesting to still be constructing a small liquor store when the experts came in and began discussing where to put what bottles.  Although net profit vs price was always lurking in the background, it was more important to "convince" customers to purchase those high net profit products, and how and where they are displayed plays a huge part of that.  So we actually have lots and lots of Hari Seldon's among us right now - the advertising industry is replete with them and it all revolves around Seldon's intent to work with statistical societal results. 

    Now if we could just identify those key, cornerstone individuals that have such a large impact on society as a whole.  Perhaps Donald Trump is one of them.  Or maybe it's actually Ivanka.

    1. GA Anderson profile image86
      GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      You are almost right with the liquor store and shelf placement examples, but, my point was that the two companies mentioned, (SCL Group and Cambridge Analytics), have taken that macro-concept, applied to populations and refined it to a micro-concept, specific to small-groups, (relatively speaking) - which has the ability to make almost daily course changes to accommodate new data.

      Sort of like a face recognition reader at the liquor store door that would automatically rearrange the entire store to funnel you past all of the impulse brands specific to your susceptible temptations,
      (that are known via your social media interactions - or even your friends social media actions, because they know they wouldn't be your friends if you didn't have similar likes),  and then, while you were passing those impulse brands - send you a tweet or text that one of your friends also bought that brand you are passing on the way to the brand you came in for - and that is only the first level.

      By the time you exit the store, the algorithm has already told them what billboard ad to display on the way to your car... and that is only the second level.

      No bud, this new stuff of Cambridge Analytics et al., is light years ahead of the historical behavior analysis stuff that told the liquor store what shelf placement worked best, or what department placement yielded the most profitable traffic patterns - ie. milk in the far back corner, candy bars next to checkout, etc.

      GA

      1. wilderness profile image95
        wildernessposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        Oh, agreed - I mention the liquor store as the birth of the "system", not the finished or even current product.  It was the infant, not the adult or even teen.

        But I will say that what you describe as an example - changing the store to fit me as I walk in) becomes more psychology than Seldon's psychohistory.

    2. GA Anderson profile image86
      GA Andersonposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      ... and furthermore Wilderness, I just remembered seeing a scene in the book, (yep, I got so deep in those readings, and Asimov was so good, that I could see what I was reading - just like an IMax movie), where the mathematics of the Prime Radiant were displayed on the walls as a moving and living equation - something that I think would be a close approximation to the complexities and scope of a modern-day AI algorithm code equation.

      GA

      1. wilderness profile image95
        wildernessposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        Now that I like - it's a very good example!

    3. colorfulone profile image87
      colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      I can imagine its the globalist central bankers / Federal Reserve.  The man behind the iron curtain, David Rockefeller passed on recently at 101 so we can check him off, but...  That, that entity will return again with his mantel advocating for depopulation and saying in essence what  Rockefeller spoke about in his speeches. 

      “The negative impact of population growth on all of our planetary ecosystems is becoming appallingly evident.”

      That is the darkside. 

      Added: the Federal Reserve that lost $9 Trillion.

  3. colorfulone profile image87
    colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago

    This is cool, a US Military ray gun. 

    https://usercontent2.hubstatic.com/13476321.jpg

    They have a ton of Sci-Fi weapons to see in image searches and on YouTube.

    Kids have learned how to make their own microwave guns, that's kind of a scary thought because they really do work.  The military directional energy weapons are very advanced technology, but I don't think we've seen half of them yet from what I have heard.

    1. Credence2 profile image85
      Credence2posted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      Interesting, wheredid you see this? Gotta find out about its
      power and effectiveness...

      By the way, I will see what I can find.

      1. colorfulone profile image87
        colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        I saw it on a Sci-Fi military weapons video on YouTube then did a image search for military rayguns.
        I'm checking out directed-energy weapons on this site where someone is really into gathering this kind of info.  ... http://www.military.com/video/directed-energy-weapons

        1. Credence2 profile image85
          Credence2posted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

          Hey, thanks for that link, I am having a field day with it.

          1. colorfulone profile image87
            colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

            I like taking a break to watch videos on defense technology from different countries.  Amazing stuff they show off! 

            But, this is insane.  I was just reading that Connecticut is set to become the first state to deploy deadly police drones.  The police state moves ahead with its agenda.  Legislators are for this.  Maybe every state will want this soon. 

            Disney is going to move toward TSA style pat downs (and groping) in theme park.

            The University of Arkansas is set to employ snipers to watch over the football games.  What?  I can hardly believe this.  It wouldn't take long to lock down a stadium full of people with snipers in place.

  4. profile image59
    sportstotoposted 3 weeks ago

    Can you imagine a world without the Internet? What about cell phones or satellite television?

    1. colorfulone profile image87
      colorfuloneposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      Everyone would be hungry for information. Prepare and do what you can before that happens. Ham radio operators will be VIPs, everyone would want to keep them alive.  A good shortwave radio (get extras for bartering tools), satellite phones would be gold for keeping in touch with loved ones.

  5. Nathanville profile image89
    Nathanvilleposted 3 weeks ago

    Your introductory article is a very profound post GA, and so true.

    I was brought up on the likes of Asimov, Frank Herbert, Arthur C. Clarke and so on.  Science and science fiction has always been a passion of mine.  I passed my Astronomy ‘O’ level exam at school, which was one of the qualifications that helped to get me my government job in Admin; albeit due to my aptitude in technology I was later able to switch to ITC and after a while transfer to a technical professional government post.  In more recent decades, my special interest in science has been quantum physics.

    One technique used by good science fiction writers is to plot trends from the past and project them into the future; which often does produce good predictions.

    One engineer who fascinates me, who was over 400 years ahead of his time is of course Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519).  Most of his works were lost in time, but those manuscripts that have survived include foresight that was Heresy at the time.  Amongst his inspirational works were detailed designs for robots, submarines, parachutes, helicopters and much more.

    As part of experimental archaeology, in recent years some of his inventions have since been built, using materials only available in the 15th century; and shown to work.

    Great Minds: Leonardo da Vinci: - https://youtu.be/kMf8hFBJylA

    1. wilderness profile image95
      wildernessposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

      It almost seems that da Vinci was a time traveler, stuck in the past with the knowledge to make things but not the infrastructure or materials to do so.

      1. Nathanville profile image89
        Nathanvilleposted 3 weeks ago in reply to this

        I know; I’ve often had that thought myself; it would certainly make for a good Sci-fi plot.

 
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