Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Cloud-based Asa H

The upper levels of the Asa H memory hierarchy evolve over longer time scales. The lower levels of the hierarchy can be implemented locally, the fastest reacting may even serve as reflexes. The higher levels might be off-loaded into the cloud. This will work well if the utility assessments are confined to their own levels in the hierarchy (as is the case with typical versions of Asa H light, see my blog of  10 Feb 2011). Network latency becomes an issue if utility feedback is required from higher levels to lower levels (as in other versions of Asa, see Trans. Kan. Acad. Sci., vol 109, pg 159, 2006).

Monday, July 17, 2017


I tend to write short, compact publications. I have considered this a virtue. Wittgenstein balked at those who complained that his Tractatus should be expanded. I felt much like he did. But each human has slightly different concepts and slightly different meanings for the words we share and use. So the only way to communicate accurately (completely) may be to use more words, more sentences. Probably my published papers should have been longer.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Fusion boundary conditions

In  1991 (R. Jones, Phil J. Sci., vol 120, pg 203) I published computer simulations showing that by controlling recycling at the boundary of the plasma one could obtain flat temperature profiles and enhanced performance. The Princeton plasma lab's LTX device has now produced such plasmas experimentally (D. P. Boyle, et al, Phys. Rev. Lett's.,on line 5 July,  2017).

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

The Manchurian Candidate of 2016

It makes sense for the Russian government to want an american president who is incompetent. It is foolhardy for them to want an american president who is crazy. No one should want a mad man in control of nuclear weapons anywhere.

Friday, July 7, 2017

Student and worker motivation

If there are too few engineers, or scientists, or teachers then in capitalism their salaries should rise. (Value monism) If this does not occur then capitalism is at fault and should be fixed. Don't blame the educators.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Faith-based atheism?

Referencing Dawkins (The God Delusion, Houghton Mifflin, 2006) Page and Navarick (Skeptic, Vol. 22, No. 2, 2017) argue that "one can not prove that something does not exist. It would have to be accepted on faith" and so if a person is 100% confident in their atheism it must be based on faith. I strongly disagree. Many people define "god" in terms of a property list like: creator of our universe, perfectly good, all knowing, all powerful, etc. etc. If I am able to prove that the components of such a list are incompatible/inconsistent with one another I CAN be 100% sure that such a thing does not exist. It is simply not a coherent concept and must be rejected. I realize, of course, that there may be different meanings of the word "god." What is required to prove or disprove the existence of "god" will depend upon what you claim god to be.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Robot effectors

You should not use a hammer to drive a screw. A toolbox should contain many tools for many tasks: hammers, screwdrivers, wrenches, saws, etc. Similarly, robots should not simply have hands like humans do, rather, they should have interchangeable end effectors.

My robotics work has been aimed instead at simply, quickly, and cheaply symbol grounding Asa H. This does not produce a very dexterous robot. (My robotics lab is unusual in its heavy emphasis on sensors/instrumentation.)