Tag Archives: laser light

Friday Notes (Mar 12, 2021)

Over time I seem to be creating day of the week categories for posts. It started with TV Tuesday, back in August 2012. (Which I unfortunately made a Tag rather then a Category — something I’d like to change one of these days.) The very next month I created Wednesday Wow (as a Category), which languished for years but I’ve used more often lately.

I’m not exactly sure when I created Sci-Fi Saturday. The first post was in July 2011 (the month I began this blog), but the Category came later. I applied it retroactively (many SF posts were on Saturdays; go figure). Mystery Monday is a recent addition started in December 2019.

And now I’m starting Friday Notes.

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Triscuit Mystery Solved!

Have you ever lain awake at night wondering where the name Triscuit came from and what could it possibly mean? No? Me either, but apparently some people have, at least a little, and now they can finally sleep easily. It seems that, due to some intrepid detective work (by a comedian), the mystery is solved. It wasn’t ghosts after all but the work of humans.

The punchline is that the name stands for “electric biscuit” — because back in the early 1900s, when Nabisco invented the Triscuit, electricity was a Big New Thing. Everyone was into it. So they presented biscuits baked to perfection using that new-fangled electricity stuff which was clearly superior to any old-fashioned source of heat.

And now, like Pringles and potato-chips in general, they come in lots of flavors and some variations. I don’t know if they’re still electric biscuits, though.

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Laser Light Shining Bright

laser-lightLast Friday I ended the week with some ruminations about what (higher) consciousness looks like from the outside. I end this week — and this posting mini-marathon — with some rambling ruminations about how I think consciousness seems to work on the inside.

When I say “seems to work” I don’t have any functional explanation to offer. I mean that in a far more general sense (and, of course, it’s a complete wild-ass guess on my part). Mostly I want to expand on why a precise simulation of a physical system may not produce everything the physical system does.

For me, the obvious example is laser light.

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No Ouch!

no ouch

“Ouch!”

Over the past few weeks we’ve explored background topics regarding calculation, code, and computers. That led to an exploration of software models — in particular a software model of the human brain.

The underlying question all along is whether a software model of a brain — in contrast to a physical model —  can be conscious. A related, but separate, question is whether some algorithm (aka Turing Machine) functionally reproduces human consciousness without regard to the brain’s physical structure.

Now we focus on why a software model isn’t what it models!

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