Sunday, December 17, 2017

The simulation argument: Does it reflect a frustration in physics?



In physics and evolution, existing theories are challenged by a list of recently observed phenomena and experimental results. For example, the observed gravitational complexities in the universe could not have been produced by the existing matter content; time, horizon, inflation, cosmological constant, and unification present unsolved and overwhelming problems. These pressing, irreconcilable conflicts and questions in contemporary physics can easily lead to a mentally powerless position, which inspires just-so answers. Just so answers short-circuit epistemological study and might have led to the simulation hypothesis that considers existence just a computer simulation. How can science, the field built on experiments and solid understanding consider such far-fetched and untestable idea? 

In science, new ideas need to be tested or thoroughly argued before publication, therefore scientific understanding progresses on a slow, but stable footing and conceptual leaps are rare. When newly developed techniques accumulate conflicting data with existing theories, daring and even bizarre solutions are proposed in an attempt to keep the current paradigm. For example, in the nineteenth century, aether was invented to explain the spread of gravity. Thus, great schisms in the sciences necessitate radical ideas that change the existing vision of the field. Accepted theories, such as general relativity became a magnet for scientists; countless applications explore and develop the theory’s potential, the evolving rules reduce its flexibility. Any emerging contradictions are patched up by increasingly fantastical explanations, and today this might have inspired the simulation hypothesis.

In string theory, the principle of static time shows that entanglement formulates a cosmic evolution which gives rise to polar singularities, called black and white holes. Nevertheless, the high entropy poles maintain low entropy regions, which great complexity and evolutionary potential, between them. Other recent hypotheses, such as the principle of static time, or the black hole firewall hypothesis are well-proven, yet remain unutilized in mainstream science. We can consider the universe as a self-regulating, coherent system that engenders its own evolution toward increasing biological complexity. In biological systems, Maxwell’s Demon utilizes the second law of thermodynamics to maintain low entropy and produce sophistication, organization, and intellect. This way the mind emerged as part of a global, self-regulating universe. Applying Landauer’s Principle for the brain shows how energy/information exchange increases synaptic complexity via comprehension, memory, movement and other reactions. The universe’s three energy levels, the elementary particles, the mind, and the whole cosmos, form a fractal system. Therefore, the universe’s evolution and complexity can be explained within a physicalist framework, which satisfies Occam's Razor.

Read the whole article  on Academia

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Thursday, December 14, 2017

Depression: Prevention via Understanding



Major depression is one of the most common mental disorders and the second leading cause of disability in the world. More than 350 million people suffer from depression globally, afflicting an estimated 4% of the world's population. A temporary feeling of low and despair can happen to anyone. However, true depression is emotional isolation characterized by profound sadness, fatigue, and a feeling of worthlessness and guilt. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, the condition is defined as a period of two weeks or longer, during which there is either depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure, and at least four other symptoms are present that reflect a change in functioning, such as problems with sleep, eating, energy, concentration, and self-image. Depression does not affect people when their sphere of influence is increasing but rather when their sense of confidence is challenged. 

In normal condition, mental stability cannot be easily disturbed. However, depressed people have the opposite problem, they are too weak to mount a response. Depression is an energy weak mental state; characterized by lack of confidence, trust, and will. Emotional rigidity, negativity, increased sensitivity and pronounced inward focus isolate depressed people. Because depression inhibits the capacity for interaction, it prevents mental progress and can even be considered a mental death in a fully functioning body. Due to the degradation of volition, one is unable to be emotionally moved by life events. The perception of time slows, and thoughts ruminate over the past. A slow mindset leads to slowness in action and cognitive functions, including inhibition of the course of thought decision, act, and even movements. Intuition about the future evaporates. Depressed patients not only experience the slowing down of the flow of time, but they are also preoccupied with past events and less focused on the future or the present. Delusions about past mistakes fill a guilt-ridden mind and lead to painful detachment from family and friends. Although guilt-ridden people tend to show excess generosity, overcompensation of insecurity and guilt by is not true altruism. Insecurity also increases the sensitivity for shame, which is the perceived loss of mental power. People with a history of depression show a greater propensity for shame. The aberrant expectation in abusive relationships can lead to depression. Due to the lack of social hierarchy, sustenance societies generate identification with a common experience, which makes depression unlikely.

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Saturday, November 25, 2017

Eliminating sexual harassment in the workplace will lead to social change







During the twentieth century, sexual equality has improved in most parts of the world. Women entering the workplace and the sexual revolution have precipitated the full participation of women in society. Still, the twentieth century saw working women mostly as secretaries and phone operators, with little or no opportunity for advancement. Although quota systems have helped, the male-dominated and intimidating corporate world has remained difficult for women to enter. This can even be seen in orchestras. To change the status quo, in US professional orchestras, blind auditions were introduced in the 1970s. In blind auditions, the identity of candidates is concealed from the jury by a screen. As a result, in the following two decades the percent of female musicians in the five highest-ranked orchestras rose more than three times and six times overall.


The recent exposure of sexual misconduct by Harvey Weinstein and others have shown that quotas alone cannot solve the existing sexual inequalities. Although Weinstein’s downfall opened the floodgates for exposing sexual misconduct of high-powered public figures, these revelations probably represent just the tip of the iceberg, exposing only familiar, well-known figures in the movie industry, politics and news media. The same problems probably exist in education, industry, banking, and the medical field. When people in leadership positions get away with predatory and abusive behavior, equality remains illusory. The above social problems affect women by eroding trust and leading to uncertainty. Lack of trust affects the mind in subtle ways. It reduces the brilliance, the creativity, and innovative spirit, that is necessary for promotion and career advancement. Even for women without personal experience with sexual harassment, the work milieu is often tainted by ruthlessness, aggression, and willingness to bend rules.


Trust is important for better economic advancement and thus correlates with higher social status. Several recent studies confirm that individuals with greater trust have lower likelihoods of default in household debt and also have higher incomeand higher net worth. Making the workplace safe for women will reformulate the dynamics of social interaction by muting conflicts, spurring better cooperation, and ushering in a more democratic and flexible social environment. Mutual respect of the sexes will nurture trust, reduce social distance and promote faster social and technological progress. The ability to file complaints anonymously and safely would greatly reduce the likelihood of sexual abuse in the workplace.




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Thursday, October 19, 2017

Emotions in social interaction




In hierarchic societies of the past, the economic necessity of brute force and repetitious work made intellect unnecessary and even dangerous. In addition, the brutality of life and lack of social net made people fearful and live with a fatalistic mindset. Because the cultural fabric of society is handed down the in the family environment as children observe and copy their parents, the emotional coping mechanisms and behavioral patterns are assimilated over countless generations. Today hard physical labor has been mostly replaced by machines, whereas the human intellectual involvement is increasingly important at every level in the corporate world and society. Fear and fatalism do not serve the requirements of our modern world. The accumulated fears of the past might provide faulty coping mechanisms for children, which handicaps their ability to achieve their full potential. High intelligence requires emotional stability, confidence, and love. But changing the mind and mastering emotions is possible at any age. Bringing a program on emotion regulation to companies and communities might transform corporate culture. Over time, the understanding of emotion regulation can become as common as the understanding of traffic rules. In a world where understanding of emotional regulation is a democratic right, individuals feel secure and supported. This feeling enhances responsibility towards our world, the environment, and for each other. Secure citizenry elects responsible governments, which act for peace, prosperity, and well-being. This way, the positive changes on the individual level will meet positive changes in society and lead to a better world. 

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Monday, September 4, 2017

The particle-like and quantum character of cognition



My book, 'The Science of Consciousness' has been published in 2015. Since that time, new methods that can investigate brain activities in vivo have verified many of the book's observations. For example, the brain has been found to be a self-organized physical system. A manuscript, 'Relationships between short and fast brain timescales', proposes the particle-like and quantum character of consciousness for the first time in a scientific publication. The article has been published in Cognitive Neurodynamics, an interdisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal with coauthors, Arturo Tozzi from the University of North Texas and James Peters from the University of Manitoba. A short summary of the manuscript can be found below. 

Cognitive phenomena, as well as social activities can be described by the laws of quantum mechanics; memories and decisions exhibit holographic organization. The origin of these observations might be found in the brain's operationThe brain is a closed, self-regulating system, where electric activities form oscillations with different timescales, leading to diverse functional and psychological outcomes. Nervous activities occurring at micro-levels can be projected to single activities at meso- and macro-levels. This means that higher scale brain activities have counterpart in the lower level ones. Examining brain functions based on entropy, electric activities form trajectories taking place on donut-like manifolds. Ideas and concepts might arise by combining different functional and anatomical structures of the brain. Duality, i.e., equivalence of two seemingly different systems, characterizes spatio-temporal brain activities, independent of their inter- and intra-level relationships, strength, magnitude and boundaries; thus, the physiological manifestations of consciousness are the outgrowth of the electric activities of the brain.


Read the whole article in Cognitive NeurodynamicsAcademia or ResearchGate.

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Monday, August 21, 2017

Einstein's blunder: understanding gravity



                                                                           video 



Newton's law of universal gravitation is still used today as the basis of calculating the attraction of masses. Newton could predict the falling of an apple. Einstein's general theory of relativity describes gravity not as a force, but as a consequence of the curvature of spacetime, a four dimensional unified field on which every change would occur. Although Einstein's theory is mathematically elegant, the difficulty of his field equations and the theory's failure of application over large scales of the universe, makes it insufficient and with limited utility. The subordination of time as a minor, fourth dimension to space might have distorted their essential differences. For example, space can be navigated at will, whereas time is largely irreversible. It requires energy to move in space, but time carries an irresistible flow of change even if we are standing still. These and other differences make time and space incompatible quantities and turns spacetime a faulty concept in physics.

The Standard Model, the most widely accepted theory in physics, neither explains dark energy and dark matter, nor does it incorporate gravity. In the above video time is considered to be a field with equal importance to gravity or space. The spatial geometry give rise a pressure, which is felt as gravity. Therefore gravity is the consequence of spatial tightness, rather than attraction. 

The Science of Consciousness, which summarizes a coherent physical world view, gives detailed explanation about gravity and related problems. Find it on Amazon.
                                            

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Monday, August 14, 2017

The role of women in the techworld



Google employee, James Damore wrote a memo that discusses the role of women in the tech world. He was fired. The firestorm that followed might give an opportunity to take stock about the changing role of women and men in society. The memo evaluated the biological differences between the sexes. Males have bigger brain size in proportion to their body, yet no sex difference can be found in working memory capacity and female subjects regularly perform better on verbal abilities. Males do better on tests that measure visual-spatial abilities, such as spatial perception and mental rotation. Looking for the origin of this sex difference it is good to go back to biology. Predators can catch their prey because larger brains help them to better maneuver in space. However, the enlargement of the male brain probably has more to do with reproduction and sex, than catching dinner. The early history of romance probably was not a Cinderella story, but the ability to prevail in a fist-fight against other suitors, cunning temperament toward raiding and kidnapping, which favored men with superior orientation in space. Does spatial orientation is an advantage in programming and the tech world? Not likely.

Does superior orientation in space give men greater success in the boardroom? The masculine character trait of sensation-seeking, which is the willingness to engage in a novel or intense activities, might be an advantage in the intense competition for leadership. Especially in traditional settings, cutthroat competition requires ruthlessness, aggression and daring, which is often accompanied by the willingness to bend the rules. A study published in Science has shown that girls even as young as six years old associate being "really, really smart" with men and such stereotype could have a life-long impact on their career choices. Until very recently, women could rarely not set foot in the male-dominated, intimidating environment. Even in orchestras, women were not welcomed until the 1970s. The introduction of blind auditions, in which the identity of candidates is concealed from the jury by a screen, have increased the chances of advancement of women by 50 percent. The percent of female musicians in the five highest-ranked orchestras in the nation has increased from 6 percent in 1970 to 21 percent in 1993 and 35 percent overall. Similar 'blind' hiring probably would advance women's professional opportunities elsewhere, also.
Old-boy networks, bullying might become old-fashioned methods in business, because of new laws against discrimination, fraud, the 'metoo' movement and instituting special protection for whistle-blowers. The above changes have been possible because of social transformations in the twentieth century. For example, the nearly full participation of women in society (women entering the workplace and the sexual revolution) has created a more cooperative social climate for both men and women.

These reformulated social dynamics mutes conflicts and ushers in more democratic and flexible social environment. A more accepting society nurtures trust, which is conducive to social and technological progress. Emotional intelligence in personal and professional situations is increasingly valued. Such feminization of the social environment leads to openness, trust, opportunities and wider professional participation for both men and women. 

However, the changing work environment also includes the mutual respect of the sexes. As the recent exposure of Weinstein, one of the most powerful men in the movie industry, of sexual misconduct has shown that our most recent history has not been supportive of equality of the sexes. When powerful men get away with predatory, abusive behavior, equality between the sexes remains illusory. Weinstein downfall has opened the floodgates for exposing sexual misconduct about high powered public figures. Will the wave of accusations and resignations change the work-culture for the better? Success should depend on the abilities and the will to make a difference, even in the Techworld. Quotas rarely create change societies, people do. Programming is no more mysterious than driving a car. In twenty years, the number of female programmers might equal or surpass that of males.


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Monday, August 7, 2017

Shopaholic: a silent addiction of our time






A hundred year ago or so the middle class in most parts of the world has lived in dire circumstances. Conveniences, which we take for granted, such as electricity, running water and indoor toilet were lacking, appliances, such as refrigerator, vacuum cleaner, lawn mower were non-existent. If you are reading my blog, then your life is very different from the above description. In our modern world, we rely on our increasingly sophisticated environment for support. We gaze into the screen of our cell phones, like Aladdin into the treasure cave. This gadget is a constant companion for communication with friends, family, weather forecast, news, appointment reminder, and for self-adulation. Cars are ubiquitous signs of material success, but in certain parts of the world such as in the US, cars are almost obligatory part of adult life. The home is the great cultural indicator of personal, professional status, which holds utilitarian objects, personal mementos, and decorations that personalize the dwelling. Our reliance on our belongings, from the bed that provides a comfortable night rest, to the nourishing morning meal, ensures a stable, reliable lifestyle. Technologically advanced tools provide the backbone of modern existence, but conveniences also increasingly include visiting restaurants for a midday meal or picking up a coffee at Star Bucks. Advertisements and credit make it easy and almost unavoidable to roll out the bucks for new kitchen counter gizmo, or the jersey of your favorite player, the latest phone, or a goofy Halloween display.

However, the new gadget, appliance or technical gizmo is only interesting for a short while; it might be delegated to the closet corner, collecting dust and occupying valuable space before all its capabilities are figured out. So you paid good money to artificially reduce the size of your house. Goods, which supposed to support your lifestyle, now dangerously encroach on it as the things you enthusiastically bought a few months or years ago take up closet space. Rather than supporting your life, these goods handicap it, because it is impossible to keep track of their existence. The stuff might be out of conscious perception, but it is uncertain what is lurking in the closet, attic or basement. Instead of serving your needs, these objects hinder your life. Like quicksand, they pull you down, hurting you when you least expect it: when you are in a hurry or managing an emergency.  

It can be shown that advertisements work by interfering with already existing intentions, desires. So buying goods in excess is a sign of mental hesitation: when we do not know what we want, everything seems to solve the problem. Goals serve the guidance and motivation for the future. The inability to focus on a goal you tend to invest hope in every sweet promise, which is brilliantly supplied by advertisers. A shopaholic might feel an arousal of a treasure hunter, which grows into a strong urge to shop and buy the item. But buying gives only a temporary feeling of relief. Because all addictions stem from seeking power in the wrong places, remorse, feeling of guilt, which is necessarily followed, only aggravates the problem.

The lack of inner progress against the relentless progression of time translates into a loss of control and insecurity. Addictions serve the immediate, although painfully transient, gain of control, in order to catch up to others, to society, to time itself. To produce accomplishments quickly, without investing time and work, is only possible by cutting corners, by getting a good deal or feeling high. However, the problem only gets bigger at each repeated offense, after each shopping spree, because the aftereffect of these shortcuts is always the realization of loss and failure, which actually exacerbates the addiction. Is there hope for a change? 

Just like any other addiction, it takes long disciplined work to get your shopping addiction under control. Two ways to change: (1) Start a motivating activity that reins in your wayward attention. When you take part in an activity that produces positive change, you spur an inner movement toward the future. (2) Give away your excess belongings. When you share with others, you make the world a better place and liberates you from guilt. The price of industrial products are coming down and probably will in the future. When you practice a thoughtfulness about your buying habits, you force yourself to focus on the future, which will turn into a habit. Focusing on the future is a goal-oriented living, whether you are saving money for a new house, car or retirement. Be patient! Success does not happen overnight. When you take your first step toward the future, toward a better life, it will generate a sense of movement. When you are moving forward, your restlessness and uncertainty will subside. Your better life is the greatest reward.

A more detailed explanation for some of these and other questions about the mind can be found in the book, The Science of Consciousness.

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Sunday, June 25, 2017

New, non-invasive treatment for brain diseases





The best current treatment for Parkinson's disease is deep brain stimulation, achieved by implanted electrodes deep within brain tissue. Brain stimulation was summarized in my earlier blog. The risk of operation makes this procedure a last resort in most cases. In addition, the difficulty to find the proper target site in the brain makes the success rate of this medical procedure poor.

For this reason, a new method, which applies high-frequency brain stimulation without immediate physiological effect, is being considered. When two, slightly different and overlapping high frequencies were administered at the anatomical target site, their net effect is a new, subtracted frequency. The new method, which can be applied without surgery, eliminates operative and post-operative risks. Moreover, the target site can be modified fluidly at any time in order to achieve optimal effects. The new method is being considered for Parkinson's disease, but it might be useful for other brain conditions also. 

Drawback? You cannot ask your doctor for the procedure yet, because so far it has only been applied to animals. Furthermore, the treatment is not available as a small device either. As of now, you cannot take your 'treatment cap' on the road just yet. Read the whole article.

Reference:

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Sunday, June 4, 2017

Why do we need a new physical world view


Fresco of young woman

Our world is defined by technological progress and fast-paced social change, increasing the complexity of our everyday life. The scientific achievements of the twentieth century have been spectacular in technology, physics, and medicine and led to the sense that we can master nature and understand existence. The increasing amount of detail and the pace of change necessitated greater specialization that elevated the social appreciation of the sciences and made formal education increasingly important. Yet, existing theories in physics fail to explain a long list of unsolved problems, such as the arrow of time, the cosmological constant problem, the interpretation of quantum mechanics and its unification with general relativity, the nature of gravity, dark energy and dark matter, the microwave background horizon problem, problems with the big bang, Mach’s principle, negative mass, physical information or the theory of everything. The unintuitive and even illogical nature of some areas in physics strains education, making it difficult to attract a new cadre of bright and original thinkers into research. Reconsidering some of the most basic questions in physics, such as time, gravity or entropy might lead to a new physical worldview. Such a hypothesis is the subject of my book, 'The Science of Consciousness.' 

Investigating entropic changes based on the energy/information exchange during interaction takes physics back to its basic understanding, but it leads to an encompassing, and coherent, sorely needed clear worldview, which might instigate a giant leap in physics. This new physical worldview might make quantum mechanics an intuitive science, explain the origin of mass, show the operational principle of gravity, throw light on the nature black holes, and the large-scale structure of space. The new physical worldview would turn physics into a comprehensible science, which, by attracting a new generation of scientists into academic research would revitalize technological progress. Demystifying physics would be good for all areas of the sciences because it would boost morale, inspire ideas, and increase public engagement and enthusiasm for funding of scientific and technological research. This new physical worldview also includes consciousness, which would prompt innovative tools for the cure of neural and mental diseases. The hypothesis shows that the mind is the inextricable part of the universe. The knowledge of being an inalienable part of something bigger will give a sense of ownership, belonging and responsibility: Atman and Brahman are one. 


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Sunday, May 28, 2017

The structure of the Cosmos


 


The vacuum energy problem is one of the most significant unsolved problems in quantum mechanics. The long list of unsolved problems in physics indicates that the Standard Model might need mending or be outright replaced. The above video highlights two problems with Einstein's relativity: 1, space in a vacuum is flat and 2, objects curve spacetime. The above video introduces a new physical worldview, which points toward the unification of quantum mechanics and general relativity. Dividing the universe with an information blocking horizon is congruent with the holographic principle, proposed by Leonard Susskind. Rethinking the basic structure of space might solve the above-mentioned contradictions in physics, and it obeys Mach's principle, explains gravity, and turns quantum mechanics into comprehensible and intuitive science. 

Heisenberg uncertainty principle: 
The video explains that the particle wave function and the spatial curvature changes remain related. Increasing speed correspond to higher frequencies and positive field curvature (space contrasts). This way location is more specific, but the velocity is uncertain. In contrast, lower frequencies correspond to smaller speed, but the negative curvature of space (which expands) leads to an uncertainty of location. This uncertainty reaches its climax in the poles.

Vacuum energy
Quantum mechanics tells us that vacuum if full of energy. In fact, vacuum energy remains one of the unsolved problems in physics. Watch the above video to learn why vacuum actually expands the universe by curving space into the fourth dimension.

General relativity  
Einstein's general relativity tells us that the fabric of spacetime is curved within and around large gravitational objects, but it is flat in a vacuum (see image below). The Michelson–Morley experiment to find the presence and properties of ether in 1887 proved that there was no such substance, therefore no directional asymmetry in the universe. Because of this finding cosmos is considered isotropic. However, the conventional Michelson–Morley type experiments could never detect dimensional anisotropy. Instead, dimensional anisotropy would form exponentially increasing energy need of acceleration and the gravitational differences depending on the curvature of space.

Thus, the universe is infinite (due to the dimension increase of white holes), but it has finite boundaries (due to the dimension decrease of black holes). Moving with constant speed corresponds to a movement along latitude. Therefore it would bring one back to the starting point.


Massive object (such as a planet) curves spacetime according to general relativity. 


Mach's principle:
Dark energy (the universe expansion) does not have a good explanation. Although the expansion is far smaller than the calculations would suggest, four-dimensional white holes could expand the universe at an accelerating rate. Dimensional anisotropy also satisfies Mach's principle. Read the whole article or view it on Academia  The above proposed structure also leads to a cosmological evolution via interaction that engenders consciousness. So we are organic, inalienable part of the universe.

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