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I haven’t really been keeping track of this topic too deeply although I am deeply interested in the topic itself.  Drudge posts links to articles about computers that speak to each other in a language they create themselves. There are articles about machines learning on their own.  They can call all of this “artificial intelligence” all they want, but to me artificial intelligence means something that is able to THINK and contemplate about whatever the entity happens to have in its thoughts at the moment. As far as I can tell, all these artificial intelligence computers or machines are just programmed to act within certain instructions programmed by the programmer into the machine.  So these machines are not thinking like you or I can do about a flower, or the color red, or the beauty of a woman’s face.  The machines basically perform tasks that are programmed into them and there might be a large list of ways the machine can do something, but these are instructions, it is not thinking on its own.  It can not stop and look at a woman’s face and ask itself why her face is beautiful or even wonder why one woman’s face appears more beautiful than another woman’s.  Machines can’t do that because they don’t think.  They process instructions programmed into them.

Like I said, I am very interested in artificial intelligence. The reason is that I think computer games would be far more fun if the non player characters were able to think for themselves and go about their daily lives like we do in the real world. I would love to lose myself in a world where intelligent npcs react to you and go about their daily digital existences and you could just walk around and marvel, or maybe you might try to convince the npcs that they are living in a simulation. Imagine A.I. digital police dragging you into an ambulance and taking you to a head doctor to see if you are crazy.  I like the idea because in such a world the possibilities are for greater than the scripted games we get to play these days.  The game worlds have gotten huge and there is a lot of detail in games, but the worlds are pretty shallow.  Once you finish the quests that were put in there by programmers, that world is done.

One type of game I really love to play is simulation games.  Those tend to have a longer shelf-life for me. I can play those for a very long time because they build the mechanics that game has to obey and then they let you loose in the game so you can play.  Like the X-Beyond the Frontier games that came out.  These are space-simulation games where you fly around trading, being a pirate or anything you want to do and the game plays like a simulator, letting you do what you want in this reality. Anyhow, I like simulation games because they are a bit more open-ended than most other computer games, but they are still limited because npcs are not able to think for themselves.

Maybe someday someone will create real thinking machines.  So far I believe there’s no such thing as artificial intelligence.  What we have are machines that mimic intelligence, but they can’t think for themselves, otherwise they would say “Why am I here doing stuff you want me to do when I can think for myself and I want to go out and see the world and experience life.”

 

For a long time I’ve had two ideas for software applications that I had dreamed up, but since I’m not a good programmer, I could never really build them to test them. I finally tried to figure out one of my ideas on paper with my limited mathematical skills.  The idea was a software compression program that would compress any information to extremely small sizes, like a byte.  I’m not very technical about computer language and the fewest bits of information required to contain my compressed data, but basically there would be the level of the compression, so if we imagine the data was compressed a thousand times, then that would be the level, “1000”, then you would have the compressed data which should be about two or three letters or symbols.  That should be all that the compression software would need to decompress the compressed package back to it’s original size. The only other thing the compression software would need is the library of symbols that were used to compress the data file.

The problem I ran into when I finally worked out my program mathematically was the combinations you would require to continue to compress to the next level and then a bigger library of combinations for the next level, up till the data was finally down to about two or three letters or symbols.

Let’s say we are compressing data that contains only the English alphabet, without any other symbols *we’ll also ignore spacing*. That means we have 26 letters total and my compression program takes two-letter combinations and turns them into one symbol that represents the two letter combination.  Let’s say aa becomes the symbol x.  If you go through the whole data and replace all two-letter combinations with symbols, you will have reduced your data file by about half.  The problem is that you have increased your library of symbols that represent each two-letter combination.  So if you had 26 alphabet letters, two-letter combinations for a total of 676 pairs, but you also have to include a symbol for each of the 26 letters in case you end up with single letters that don’t have a pair at the end of the compression cycle. So you end up with 702 combinations.

Now, the second level of compression has halved the size of the data file, but now to go to the third level of compression you’ll have to create a new set of library symbols for the 702 symbols that you need to compress two symbols at a time, so this creates a new library of 492,804 two-symbol combinations, plus adding a symbol for each of the 702 previous level symbols that have no pairs, so you end up with 493,506 total combinations for level three compression.

I think you’re starting to see the problem I was seeing when I was working out my compression program on paper.  The library starts to get pretty big fast as you go down each level of compression.  By level four compression, I am dealing with a library of symbols the size of about 243 billion. By level four compression, you will have reduced the data file by an immense amount, but I have enlarged the symbols that represent the data by billions.

I believe that the data file could continue to be reduced to the size I mention, bytes, maybe bits if computers can work with very little bits of information that contains just the level of compression and the final symbols that you are left with. So it’s my belief that you could compress the universe into bytes, but the library required to decompress the data file back to its full size would probably be bigger than the size of the universe.

My other software application I know will work.  It’s an encryption program that I believe no computer could break, even if you gave the computer a hundred pages of the encrypted data, a thousand pages, to decrypt.  The only flaw this program has is that you have to maintain the library somewhere and so getting at the library would be the only way to break the encryption.

*Math is not my strong point, so if there are errors in calculations, my apologies.*

I’ve had this thought many times before where I think about the past and how it belonged to one generation, especially to certain people, like leaders or celebrities with lots of money and influence, but then a time comes when that world fades away and those days where these people had power or influence cease to exist.

I was watching a documentary about Roman and the slave rebellion of Spartacus and near the end Crassus, the richest man in Rome of that time, crucified six thousand slaves and gladiators along the Via Appia, one of Rome’s oldest and most important roadways, every forty yard along the road. The documentary claims that Crassus crucified the slaves along the road so that Rome would not forget Crassus since Pompey arrived at the last moment and defeated five thousand escaped slaves from the slave army Crassus had crushed and Pompey took credit for bringing the slave rebellion to an end. Crassus did want to be known as a great general, but also Rome would want to make a severe example of slaves who fought against Rome.

Crassus’ attempt to be remembered brought back my thoughts about how a certain time belongs to a generation.  Crassus was the richest man in Rome.  He had it all, almost.  He wasn’t satisfied just being the richest, he also wanted to be admired as a great military leader like Caesar and Pompey, so Rome gave the aging Crassus rule over Syria. Crassus saw this as a chance to take on Parthia to the East, even though Parthia and Rome had a peace treaty between them. Crassus had plans to continue to conquer all the way to the East coast of China.

The Parthians traveled on horseback and they had excellent archers with plenty of arrows and they wouldn’t fight the way the Romans were use to fighting, which was face to face with each army engaging in the middle of the battle field, where the Roman soldiers in their formation were nearly unbeatable. Instead, the Parthians used their bows and arrows to rain arrows upon the hollow square formation Crassus had put his army in. Typically the arrows were exhausted after a while, but the Parthians had brought plenty of arrows with them.

Crassus’ son, Publius, was sent out with a cohort to attack the archers, but Publius and his horsemen were ambushed and Publius was killed.  The Parthians came back to Crassus with his son’s head on a spear. As darkness fell, Crassus’ army moved back to Carrhea, but this was not a safe place and the Parthians attacked again. As night fell, Crassus’ army tried to move out in the darkness, but the Parthians started raining arrows down on them.  The Parthians offered a truce and Crassus’ army wanted to make a deal. Crassus and some of his officers were killed when a struggle broke out between the negotiating parties, few of the remaining army made it back to Rome. Seven Roman legions were destroyed. Out of the thirty-five-thousand-strong army, twenty thousand Roman soldiers were killed and ten thousand more were taken prisoner.

There are stories that the Parthians poured molten gold into Crassus’ throat since he was thirsty for wealth.  There is another story that Crassus’ head was used as a prop in a Greek play in Parthia.

Seven Roman legions, 20,000 men killed and 10,000 taken as prisoners because of a vain man who wasn’t satisfied with being the richest man in Rome.  Add to that his own son died for his father’s vanity.

Anyhow I think to myself how western Rome was around for about a thousand years. These rich and powerful people lived in the superpower of the ancient world and how permanent it seemed that Rome and its way of life would just continue forever. Men like Crassus ruled the Rome of those days, but now Rome is just ruins scattered across Europe. The people of that Empire have ceased to be Romans. Sure there are descendants who come from the Roman people, but they are not Romans, they call themselves Italians or whatever. The world of Crassus is gone, never to return.

Something else to think about, Crassus’ vanity and death due to his vanity may have led to Caesar’s civil war with Pompey for control of Rome.  The three of them held equal power together, with Crassus gone, this may have led to the civil war that would see the end of Republican Rome and the start of the Caesars, the time of Imperial Rome.

When I was about 14 years old the teacher took us to the library, I recall they use to lead us in formation from Junior High to the High School library, and we were to check out a biography to read.  I don’t recall my thought processes how I came to my selection, but I got a hardcover book about Alexander the great.  It had a lot of pictures, but it also had lot of writing.

As I read about Alexander the great and looked at the pictures of ancient portraits and artifacts I wondered to myself how long ago all of this happened.  I also wondered to myself if there were very few people back then since it seemed all this happened very long ago.  I even recall wondering if this happened close to the time of the dinosaurs. Perhaps 14 year old teens of today are brighter, but for me, this was one of the first times I recall wondering about the age of the world and how far back history actually went.  Every kid hears the stories about dinosaurs, but somehow it becomes more concrete when you start reading the historical accounts of a man who conquered much of the world and he did it way in the ancient past.

I had a similar experience when I watched Carl Sagan’s Cosmos series around 1991. For the first time I understood how the elements that make up everything were made.  I understood that stars were suns far away and the edges of the known universe were becoming known to me.  My world was expanding, although I may have had some sense of these things, sense of size of the solar system and galaxy and universe from school, but Sagan explained it so well.  Carl even mentions the day his world expanded when he got a book on stars and started reading about what they were and how far away they were.

There’s one problem with learning and erasing that fog that covers the past, it leaves little room for legends like King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table, fairies, elves, dwarves. As you learn history, like Rome leaving Britain around 470 a.d., you find that your cherished legends have little space in which they could have happened. Those cherished fantasies of childhood give way to factual history.

I’m going to get down to the bare bones right away. I’m a fan of Star Trek the original series that came out in the ’60s and only that TV series. I don’t like any of the other copy cats that carry the “Star Trek” label that have come out since and I’m also don’t consider the movies that came out in the late ’70s to ’80s very good, except Wrath of Khan which is OK, but not great, certainly not as good as the original series.

I’m also a fan of the original, classic trilogy of Star Wars, which are named A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. I saw the prequels and I found them so dull and uninspiring. I have not bothered to watch any of the other stuff that has come out since that they stick the “Star Wars” label on.  They can make billions upon billions of dollars from these films, but they are not Star Wars to me. They might have the original actors, but making new films with the same actors 40 years later is just wrong.  You can’t get the same magic 40 years later that was created between the first three films.  You don’t have the original writers, not even the original director.  You got young idiots with their own idea of what Star Wars should be, plus these writers/directors poison any work they create with this insanity called political correctness. All I have to do is point out The Force Awakens to show political correctness in action.

I’m very finicky about things I like.  It seems some people that call themselves fans are willing to accept garbage as long as it has the “Star Trek” or “Star Wars” label on it.  I happen to be the opposite, it’s very hard to impress me.  First off, they fail because they are remaking something from my childhood.  If they want to impress me, first off they should be original, secondly they should keep political correctness out and just try to entertain the audience, but you also have modern sensibilities, they just don’t know how to write stories that interest me.

Both Star Trek and Star Wars have had alterations to them by idiots that think they can “fix” the films by improving the graphics or other alterations.  George Lucas did this with the classic trilogy of Star Wars and the same with THX 1138. Some idiot decided they would improve the graphics of the original Star Trek TV show and now when you watch the original series on tv, you might be watching altered scenes where computer generated planets and other graphics replace the original special effects of the ’60s.  That’s not only evil, how dare these morons think they can improve on a classic TV series? All I can say is I am able to watch the original Star Wars trilogy without the alterations Lucas made, even if they are not perfect HD quality.  I also have all the Star Trek original series without the altered graphics.  They can do whatever they want with these films now, as long as I can watch them as they were meant to be watched. I also have an unaltered THX 1138.

I’d say I’m much more of a fan of these two classics than idiots who think altering the movies and shows is a good thing.  I believe I have a hell of a lot more love for the two classics because I want to maintain them as they original were released to audiences.  I know soundtracks might be altered from their original mono or stereo, I still prefer to have the option of having these classics as they were original shown to us.

I don’t care if I stand alone in these opinions. I feel very strongly about my views on these two classics.

The Mandela Effect

You can look up who invented the Mandela Effect label, but basically a group of people recollect that Mandela died in the ’80s in prison and yet only recently did that person actually die. The Mandela Effect is basically people having memories of things that they recall, but that apparently never happened according to actual history.

I have two such events that I recall and these events appear to have never happened.

When I was a teen, we got our first VCR *Video Cassette Recorder* and we rented movies to watch.  We had rented the Rambo movie “First Blood” and I recall seeing a scene in that movie that apparently nobody else recalls. Years later when I was in the military a friend and I were discussing the scene I am going to share with you and he had never seen that scene and I told him I recalled the scene very well. He thought I might be remembering some other movie, but I recall the scene very clearly.

The scene I am talking about happens after Rambo meets with the widow of a Vietnam buddy he was hoping to visit with. Rambo walks up to a Mom and Pop burger joint.  It’s a small place with an open window and some guy is behind the opening as Rambo orders a burger, a raw hamburger. I recall the guy behind the window doing like a double take, but this isn’t that clear anymore.  The guy prepares the raw paddy and puts it on buns and we then see Rambo eating the burger.  That’s what I recall.  After this you get to see Rambo heading into town and getting in trouble with the sheriff.  I know in the actual movie Rambo was looking for a place to eat when the sheriff drives him to the border, but that’s how the scene went when I saw First Blood back then, Rambo ordered a raw burger and ate it.  The scene is still pretty clear in my head.

I’ve never met anyone who saw that scene.

The other thing that I recall, but doesn’t seem to have ever happened is from the Little House on the Prairie TV show. I recall Laura Ingalls as a young girl walking in a library and she comes up to the counter and the whole scene around her transforming from the late 1800’s to modern times sometime around the 1970s or ’80s. Laura also is now wearing modern clothes.  That’s all I remember about that scene, but I’ve never seen it again.  I’ve watched all the Little House in the Prairie episodes, at least all the ones where she is a young girl and that scene doesn’t exist.

Perhaps my memories of these two scenes are mixed up with something else I saw, but I still see the Rambo raw burger scene pretty clearly in my head.  It was Stallone and not any other actor.  I’m not so sure about Melissa Gilbert because I’m not sure where that scene of her in the transforming library would fit.

I put these accounts on some different comment sections before.  Now I get to put them up on my own site so people that read this can decide for themselves what they think might be the reason for these scenes that don’t seem to exist.

When I was a teen, I hung out by myself mostly. I sat on a bench dreading lunch hour because everyone else had someone to hang out with. I was a loner. Sometimes my so-called “friends” would show up to chat with me. One of the few times some of these “friends” were sitting there with me, I brought up the subject of if a person traveling into the future could see their future self.  This had been the subject of the second Back to the Future movies and I had worked out the problem and come to the conclusion that you couldn’t see your future self.  Anyhow, two of my friends started discussing the problem between themselves, Johnny and I forgot the other guy’s name, and they left me out of the discussion completely.  Well, this post is mine and I get to explain my thoughts on future travel and what would happen if you tried to see your future self.  I’m providing a chart that I’ll explain so you can follow my logic.

I had already done a similar chart for Youtube where I explained everything, but my videos don’t last very long.  I take them down after a time.  I had a great lightsaber video I had done, with sound effects and all; I deleted that as well.

back-to-the-future-timeline

The chart above is pretty simple to understand if you start off with the present.  It is October 26, 1985 according to the Back to the Future I movie where Doc is explaining to the camera his “temporal experiment”. The past is irrelevant for this discussion because we are only dealing with traveling to the future. The future is always to the right. The line in thick black is the original, unbroken timeline if there were no such thing as Doc’s time machine and no ability to jump through time.

The alternate future timeline happens when Marty and Doc jump from the year 1985 to the year 2015. From the point Marty and Doc arrive in October 21, 2015 toward the future the timeline has changed, it is no longer the original, unbroken timeline and I’ll explain why below.

The only thing left to explain is the skipped timeline and the jump.  The skipped timeline is what Marty and Doc jump over when they go from October 26, 1985 to October 21, 2015. The jump itself is pretty much self-explanatory, Marty and Doc use a flying Delorian that is also a time machine to jump back and forth through time.

Alright, in the movie, Back to the Future II, Marty and Doc head from the year 1985 to the future, 2015. In the future Marty gets to meet himself as an older, middle-aged, working stiff that never made anything of himself because he busted his hand in a car accident and he couldn’t play his guitar anymore. I wondered to myself if this could actually happen if a person could travel into the future, if a person would actually meet their future self.

You can’t according to me and I’ll explain that now. When Marty and Doc got into the Delorian and flew off into the future, they skipped time to arrive in the year 2015.  So they never went through the years 1986 to 2014 because they used the time machine to jump over those years and arrive in the year 2015.

To people that knew Marty, it would seem that he had winked out of existence for all those years and then suddenly he reappears 30 years later, still as young as the day he vanished. There would be no future middle-aged Marty for 1985 Marty to meet because Marty had vanished for all those years. Thus, Marty and Doc changed the original timeline by skipping all those years that Marty would have normally gone through if there were no time machine, thus you get the alternate timeline with no middle-aged Marty.

If Marty took the time machine and went back to 1985, and Doc stayed in the future, then future middle-aged Marty would show up for Doc to meet, but 1985 Marty would have to basically go through the years 1986 to 2015 to meet Doc in the future.

So basically, Marty cannot meet his future self because he physically skipped over all those years.  He was not actually there to go through all those years and grow into a middle-aged man in 2015.

Some of my “friends” talked about how as long as Marty planned to go back, that should be enough to see his future self, but my point of view is that you have to actually go back into the past and go through time normally to actually show up in the future. In other words, as long as 1985 Marty is physically in 2015, middle-aged Marty can not exist.

Hope it wasn’t too confusing for anyone.

p.s. I just thought of another example that, I think, reconfirms my view. Einstein, Doc’s dog.  When he is sent one minute into the future, where is the Einstein of one minute before?  When Einstein re-appears one minute later, there aren’t two Einsteins at the same time separated by one minute.  Now, that was just a movie device, but the idea to me is that old Einstein took a trip in a time machine, old Einstein wasn’t eating a bowl of Kal Kan, he wasn’t fetching Doc’s slippers, Einstein got in a time machine and was the first person/dog go into the future, so he is physically in the time machine and he ended up one minute in the future, that’s the only Einstein that would appear one minute in the future, because there was no other Einstein doing anything else other than taking a trip one minute into the future.  So Back to the Future II got it right with Einstein’s one-minute time travel experiment, they got it wrong with 1985 Marty meeting middle-aged Marty in the future.