Sunday, April 30, 2017

Neuralink Urban legends, a must Musk read

AI (Artificial Intelligence. But I assume you are aware of this meaning) is a big thing. A mega-big thing. A "we ain't seen nothing yet"-mega big thing. Something that is not easy to wrap your head around.

We have all seen and used AI and related things like ML (Machine Learning). Likely you have also seen and heard about possibilities just around the corner.

But perhaps "we ain't seen nothing yet". We might be at a stage of insight that compares to the future of "AI" the way the first pre-wheel, rolling log, make-it-easier-to-move-stuff, implementation compares to the worldwide systems of logistics of today.

The short version seems to be that AI will happen and will change everything, big time. Hopefully in a good way but the risks are not the usual ones. And if that is the case, what shall (and can) we do to increase the likleyhood that the outcome is "positive"?

A man, a plan, a canal - but not Panama

Enter Elon Musk, who is behind both Tesla and SpaceX. Elon Musk has raised concerns around the AI evolution, and also eg  sponsored OpenAI.

The man has a plan. He also has a canal, or rather channel, for the initial announcement and outline of the new venture Neuralink. He chose a blog and a blogger.

Perhaps an unusal channel for an introduction (and, sure, I would not be surprised if more traditional channels was used as well - but I am not aware of any and most coverage refers to the WaitButWhy blog post).

And, make no mistake, this is not a usual blog, nor a usual blog post. It's long. It's good. It's a must read. And again long. It was posted just over a week ago, and it took me five days to get through it. (OK, it is not that long. I did other things as well during these days.)

If you have read earlier posts on the choice by Elon Musk might not be all that surprising. Tim Urban (the blogger at WaitButWhy) already wrote a number of posts on Elon Musk and his earlier ventures, on a direct request from Elon Musk (start here), as well as a two piece blog post on AI which is another great read.

But if you only read one of the posts - read the post on Neuralink and the Brain's Magical Future. It will help you wrap your head around AI and one approach that might prevent a singularity type existential risk.

The Musk Business Canvas

During your reading journey you will come across this image, the Elon Musk Company Formula according to Tim Urban.

Image from by Tim Urban. Used with permission.

You will find the canvas in the fourth chapter of the rad blog post, where this canvas is populated with both the Tesla and the SpaceX rationale.

If you have ever thought about the drivers of Elon Musk, or the concept of Massive Transformative Purposes, you will see how this canvas fits into the puzzle.

Don't get fooled by the lower left blue circle with the words "Starting Point". It is not the starting point. The canvas work starts in the upper right corner. The starting point for the canvas work in the Neuralink case is the "increased chance for a good future" in the context of AI.

In order to find the answers to the "how", "why" and other questions, go ahead and read. The reading will take you through the background and the population of the boxes in the canvas. You will read that "democracy is like escaping from a monster by hiding in a sewer", an you will learn things you didn't know. But take your time, you will need it.

And the ending is an interesting way of viewing AI: "in a future world made up of AI and everyone else, he  [Elon Musk] thinks we have only one good option: To be AI."

(The short version of this blog post: Read the post on Neuralink and the Brain's Magical Future. Why? Read this blog post.)

Originally published at on April 30, 2017.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Lost and Found

Most of us have spent time looking for something we needed to locate. Be it the car keys, that important paper or something else we urgently need.

Sooner or later that lost thing often turns up. With a bit of luck before the opportunity where the thing that is lost is needed.

In order to find the lost item fast enough most of us applies some kind of search, be it structured or more unstructured.

And everytime we search that lost thing is located in the last place we would search.

Naturally it is. Why would we look any further once we found what we are looking for? That wouldn't be rational.

We stop looking when we find the solution to the problem. That is the rational thing to do. But it is also a problem. Sometimes it is even "the problem". It might even be an irrational thing to do.

If you have a problem that needs a solution, it is very easy to stop looking when you find the solution. But likely you haven't found the solution, just a solution.

How do you know that there's a better solution, if you just keep looking? The problem is that you don't, so it wouldn't be rational to continue looking. But think again, compare with your experience from the past. How many times have you, sooner or later, identified a better solution after a while?

So how long should you then keep looking?

In the case of a simple problem like the car keys, the answer is obvious (or at least seems obvious). But there might be an other type of answer, and in order to identify that we return to the time before you found the car keys, or a solution to whatever type of problem you try to solve.

What thoughts went through your mind at that point in time?  Perhaps thoughts like "where did I (mis)place the keys?", "when did I see them last?" or even "who took my keys!?".

Or did you search for the solution (sorry, the car keys) while at the same time looking for an alternative solution? "If I do not find the car keys I need to take the bus, and in that case I need to stop searching in 45 mins and instead walks to the bus station." Or "if I do not find the car keys I can call my friend and ask for a ride".

If you continiously look for altetrnative solutions some magic starts to happen.

  • You will likely find an alternative solution before you find the car keys.
  • When you have a backup, alternative solution, you are not as stressed for finding the expected solution (the car keys).
  • And, in the general case, you realize that the expected solution is just one alternative solution among others, some of which known now, some of which will emerge in the future.

This is a liberating experience. And mind-blowing. It's the solution to all problems ;-)

(Some might draw the parallel to "parallel computing", or even with phenomena like quantum physics and Schroedinger's cat - but that's up to you. Just be careful, it might lead into a parallel universe or a higher dimension!)

So, next time you found what you where looking for, keep looking. You should constantly look for things. And at the same time you always will have an alternative solution ready.

Now, where are those car keys..?
(cross-posted from

Saturday, December 17, 2016

(Hello World)

Here is a first. A first post at Get Artsy. GetArtsy.Rocks

The context and purpose will emerge.

At the moment Get Artsy is in an A/B-testing mode with regards to publication platform. You are currently reading this at For some time all posts will be crossposted also at

The main URL is GetArtsy.Rocks

So remember:

(Psst. Epic! Ever.)