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An old rigid civilization is reluctantly dying. Something new, open, free and exciting is waking up.

This is my dynamic, frequently updated homepage. This is a NewsLog, also known as a WebLog or Blog.

Everything is evolving, so don't assume too much.

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Sites to watch:
Webcamorama
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C'est pas Mécanique

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A Quote I like:

Freedom is the opportunity to improvise life infinitely within the boundary of love. -- Mark Smollin

I live in Toulouse, France where the time now is:
06:05

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Contacting Me
I get many hundreds of e-mail messages per day and my inbox is becoming increasingly useless to me. So, if you write to me, don't count on an answer unless we know each other really well, or your communication is short and clear. Oh, I'm very friendly and approachable, but I don't have hours enough in my day to read everything.
ffunch -at- worldtrans.org

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 There's no us and them
pictureThis cartoon in a Sacramento newspaper was vigorously condemned by a lot of people who seemed to find the association with Vietnam very insulting. The cartoonist said that he meant to show that there are innocent victims of violence everywhere, and we're all vulnerable.

Personally it says to me that there is no us versus them. Office workers of New York running from a collapsing skyscraper aren't inherently any different from children in Vietnam running from napalm bombs. They're all human, all vulnerable, all victims of something they don't personally have anything to do with.
[ | 2001-09-15 02:54 | 29 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Healing after today's events
Our world was suddenly changed today, by the horrifying and tragic events in New York and Washington. What it means in the long run is impossible to say at this point.

But what is certain is that, depending on how we individually respond to this, now and in the coming time, we have the opportunity to shape the world that will emerge from this. However devastating this seemed, we have the opportunity to participate in creating a better world from this, or despite of this.

Affirm to yourself that we ARE building a better world, no matter what might point in any other direction. The vast majority of all of us on this planet want us to succeed. And there are many, many of us. Use this as motivation to commit yourself more deeply to the growing of a peaceful world for ALL of us. Don't just sit and wait for it to happen. YOUR piece of the greater puzzle is essential.

Many messages about meditations, calls for healing, rumors, news, personal stories, etc. have gone out today. I include a few selected messages and excerpts below.
[ | 2001-09-12 00:12 | 18 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Generalities and Specifics
One way of being deceptive is to provide an inappropriate mix of generalities and specifics. E.g. to give vague generalities when specific information is called for, leaving the audience thinking their questions have been answered when they really haven't; or to give loads of confusing specifics when a big picture summary was what was needed, possibly leaving the audience completely ignorant that there is a bigger picture.

A politician is typically an expert in the first kind of deception, answering in generalities and avoiding really saying anything. The news media and most educational institutions are very skilled in the second deception. They work very hard at telling you a lot of things, "keeping you informed", "teaching you", but are likely to omit the most central and important facts that would tie it all together.
[ | 2001-09-08 16:50 | 15 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Truth Pattern Analysis
One subject I'm really interested in doing something with, but which I haven't really gotten around to, is the analysis of information in order to learn the truth. Hm, I guess it is a little hard to express what I mean, but I'm talking about the ability to track down what is true and false by studying clues in the information available. There is lots of information that will indirectly reveal whether something else is true or false. Somebody who's trying to deceive and hide the real truth will reveal that fact in an assorment of ways.

Now, the reason I'm so interested in this is that the majority of the population has no clue about what is true or false, and is easily deceived. Most all media is built around that fact. All legal institutions are based on the principle that whoever argues the best for their version of truth, wins, and doesn't have any technology for actually finding truth. Likewise, science is built on models that large numbers of scientists can agree on and demonstrate the validity of, and will happily ignore huge chunks of reality that don't fit the agreed-upon reality.
[ | 2001-09-08 01:13 | 16 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 See you around, Aley
pictureMy friend "Aley", Diane Dornbusch, long time NCN member, was killed in a car accident last Tuesday, the 28th.

It is always strange when somebody dies. Sometimes a big blow, sometimes it seems a natural progression. In Aley's case, it feels like she's happy where she is, and I didn't feel like there is anything to be depressed about. She had a full life and was an inspiring and creative person.

You can see her art gallery here: [link]

Bye for now, Aley, and see you somewhere, sometime in a magical mushroom forest somewhere!
[ | 2001-09-03 00:56 | 15 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Surf report
I'll often notice how energy changes, where things are suddenly going in different ways, both for me and others. Well, I call it energy, but it is not particularly necessary to consider it anything metaphysical. Everything in the universe is connected, and something that happens in one place, or at one level, leaves clues at other levels or in other places. Small and large patterns are connected in some kind of fractal way. Which accounts for the possibility of divining tea leaves, or of making indirect scientific discoveries by extrapolating the clues left behind from something that happened, or anything else like that.

Anyway, a couple of things are different in the past couple of weeks. I've noticed many more synchronicities than usual. Like, I look at a word on the screen, and somebody says it a second later. I think of somebody and they call at the same moment. Another thing happening to me is that I had tons of trouble with technology the last couple of weeks. My computer's motherboard went up in smoke, and I had endless trouble installing things in the new computer. And I spilled a cup of tea into the new monitor. And many other things.

I've long ago dropped the idea that things happen only to me. Rather, a change in the patterns of things usually means something to others too. Exactly what, I have no idea. But the answer will probably usually be to go with the new flows, rather than resisting.
[ | 2001-08-28 15:09 | 39 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Why am I complaining?
It is funny how different environments inspire different kinds of communication. Like, here in this news log thing, it seems like I'm most inclined to write about day-to-day annoyances I have, rather than deep philosophical visions about new civilizations. Well, maybe because I need an outlet for complaining about things, maybe because I feel less of an obligation here to write something inspiring. Or maybe one just goes through different phases. In those periods where I keep a personal journal (on paper) it also changes quite a bit what I put in it. Sometimes my dreams when I wake up; sometimes philophical ideas, or realizations about how something works; sometimes personal longings I'd have trouble sharing in other formats.
[ | 2001-08-27 22:15 | 23 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Knowing where to complain
I think it is generally a good principle to voice one's opinion and to give feedback to organizations or companies one is dealing with, if one has something positive or negative to say. But I must admit that I often don't do so, even when I have something burning to say, and that is mostly because it can be cumbersome to find out who to speak to or who to write to, and then to print out a letter, mail it, etc. Particularly since my beef with an organization quite often is exactly that there seems to be nobody listening and nobody who cares. So, it is nice that there are several online possibilities that might help in communicating. For example, there is PlanetFeedback which helps you send letters to companies, and will mail them for you. And the Better Business Bureau has online forms for filing complaints, as well as lookups in their database summarizing other people's experience.
[ | 2001-08-27 13:45 | 21 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Computer advances
Damn, my computer's motherboard crashed yesterday, literally going up in smoke, and I unexpectedly had to get a new computer. But it is remarkable how little difference the advances in computers seem to make, subjectively. This computer is 3 times as fast, has 3 times as much memory, and 5 times as much disk space as the old one, which was from last year. But it doesn't really feel any different than the old one, other than that I have trouble getting a few things to work. It has more than 1000 times as much of everything as my first IBM PC computer had, which seemed lightning fast at the time, and which, in 1983, allowed me to do word processing, programming, and go online, all the same things I do today. Just not as graphically rich looking as today. And, yes, it all cost a lot more money at that time. Like $40/hour to connect with The Source to check my e-mail and browse bulletin boards.
[ | 2001-08-24 15:20 | 12 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Honest companies, cell phones
It would be nice when at some point companies will realize that they and their customers are all best served is they're honest about what they have to offer, how it works, how it is different from similar products, etc. At this point companies are still mostly trying to deceive the public, emphasizing stuff that really makes no difference, and hiding the facts that really do make a difference in one's purchasing decisions. There are some clues they really need to get, and in the longer run, it will only be companies who get it who will stay in business, I think. Anyway, I spent a few hours shopping for cell phones, which is what made me a bit frustrated with the current situation.
[ | 2001-08-20 14:32 | 18 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Y2K, and betting on the wrong horses
It took a little bit before I remembered who the Peter de Jager is that I mentioned in the previous message. He was probably the person who was most responsible for starting the Y2K craze, by predicting doomsday for our civilization. He was pretty much the main spokesperson for Y2K Doomsday, and one of the people who profited the most from that whole thing. Maybe the guy is just consistently betting on the wrong horse, and good at convincing everybody that it is the right horse. Or, maybe he's just going where the money is, I don't know. .... Well, he just sent me a very decent response, so let me not be too down on him. He said essentially that he is independent, and that, even though he himself has had problems with some of Unisys' history, he finds it better to look beyond that and support the positive projects he sees.
[ | 2001-08-17 14:24 | 13 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Boycott Software Patents
pictureI received an invitation from Peter de Jager to join with other futurists in a Global Future Forum, organized by the Unisys company. I strongly declined. Basically because Unisys is on my list of greedy, destructive, anti-social companies. In brief because they've tried very hard to get license fees from anybody who's using GIF pictures. After the Internet had caught on as a big phenomenon, and everybody were using GIF pictures in their webpages, Unisys showed up and claimed a patent on a compression algorithm used in GIF files. They of course didn't mention anything when GIF was originally chosen on the basis that it seemed to be free to use. At any rate, a number of open source software efforts either had to be halted, or GIF support was removed from some of the key software libraries used on the Internet. Simply because they were being developed for free, and given away, and the developers couldn't afford the exorbitant licenses Unisys was asking for. That has personally as a programmer cost me many hours of grief and wasted work. Here are some links about the Burn all GIFs! movement, and about the evils of software patents, and . Unisys has later moderated their position somewhat, but the damage is mostly done, and the licensing terms are still not compatible with open source software.
[ | 2001-08-17 13:38 | 15 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Creativity Spaces
I was talking with Bruce Baumrucker on the phone amongst other things about creating online spaces that foster creativity or that stimulate creative problem solving. There's a lot of neat things one can do that tends to activate creativity and takes one out of one's old habits and patterns of thinking. For example, the old technique of looking up a couple of random words in the dictionary and pretending that they have a relation to your problem and seeing where that will take you. Quite often one will develop some ideas that are totally unexpected, but useful. Bruce was mentioning that Roget's Thesaurus has numeric codes that can also be used for taking you into different directions, by exploring what else exists in the same code as what you started with. Many more things one can do, of course. In general this is what is called lateral thinking. Instead of just pressing on, trying to solve your problem linearly, it is often more useful to step to the side in a new direction and see what one finds. At any rate, one of my plans is to make online "creativity rooms" that provide tools for that kind of thing.
[ | 2001-08-16 13:34 | 21 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Siggraph
I spent the day at the Siggraph show in L.A. Convention Center. Siggraph is the showcase for the leading edge in computer graphics and animation. Nothing really revolutionary I saw, but lots of stuff that's getting better, and lots of impressive computer generated stuff. To me the most cool stuff was 3D Printers (that create an object on the spot in plastic, based on the blueprints in the computer), body motion input (digitizing somebody's movements and transferring them to animated characters in real-time), and wrap-around displays with multiple flat screen monitors. There were some, supposedly, real 3D displays, but they are still rather disappointing.
[ | 2001-08-15 23:55 | 69 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Pictures
pictureYou can upload your own pictures to go with an individual posting. This is me and my kids at my oldest daughter's highschool graduation a couple of months ago.

You can also change the pictures that show for the different categories, and you can add or delete categories.
[ | 2001-08-15 03:07 | 34 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Web-logging
What I'm calling a "News Log" is often called a "Web Log" or a "blog", and has become quite a phenomenon on the web the last couple of years. Mostly because it is a really easy and simple way of updating stuff on a webpage without having to use a web authoring program to update the HTML. Here is an article about the weblog phenomenon. A little technical, but informative.
[ | 2001-08-15 02:57 | 13 comments | PermaLink ]  More >

 Introducing new News Log feature
This is the first post here. I'm testing this new feature, which is a place where one can post timely information about one's activities, thoughts or aspirations. Each person will be able to have their own little "newspaper", if they want it, attached to their profile. This is what I call a News Log, but which is also often called a "Web Log" or a "blog" for short.
[ | 2001-08-15 01:41 | 30 comments | PermaLink ]  More >



<< Newer stories  Page: 1 ... 93 94 95 96 97
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This is a collage of things that catch my eye, things that need to be said, and stuff I really care about


TRUTH
BEAUTY
FREEDOM
LOVE
TECHNOLOGY



Barthas castle. Halloween party for Americans in Toulouse.

Previous stories
2011-01-22
  • Recognition

  • 2010-08-23
  • Semantic Pauses
  • Where's Ming?

  • 2010-07-20
  • Getting other people to do stuff

  • 2010-07-14
  • Consciousness of Pattern

  • 2010-07-10
  • Strong Elastic Links

  • 2010-07-08
  • Truth: superconductivity for scalable networks

  • 2010-06-28
  • Pump up the synchronicity

  • 2010-06-27
  • Doubt
  • Be afraid, be very afraid

  • 2010-06-22
  • Inventory

  • 2010-06-19
  • Conversations

  • 2009-11-01
  • Seven questions that keep physicists up at night

  • 2009-10-29
  • Convergent or Divergent

  • 2009-10-28
  • Then a miracle occurs

  • 2009-10-27
  • Compassion Exercise

  • 2009-10-26
  • The power of appreciation

  • 2009-10-25
  • Opinions, perceptions and intuition

  • 2009-10-16
  • Magic reality

  • 2009-10-15
  • Abstraction

  • 2009-10-14
  • Feeling the world

  • 2009-07-27
  • Reboot 11 / The Art of Not-Doing

  • 2009-06-16
  • Baseline technology

  • 2009-06-15
  • Immaculate Telegraphy

  • 2009-06-11
  • Blogging/Microbloggi.. and work

  • 2009-06-07
  • The Giant in Nantes

  • 2009-06-05
  • Writing

  • 2008-10-14
  • Where are the podcars?
  • Money and the Crisis of Civilization

  • 2008-07-11
  • Freedom and Complexity

  • 2008-07-06
  • Laws of social networks

  • 2008-07-05
  • Self-Organized Criticality

  • 2008-06-29
  • Complicated and Complex

  • 2008-06-20
  • Peer material production

  • 2008-05-16
  • The Universe as God

  • 2008-05-14
  • Kriss Hammond wants to change my financial status

  • 2008-05-08
  • Why Denmark is the world's happiest country

  • 2008-05-07
  • Why Pigs Don’t Have Wings

  • 2008-05-06
  • Why can't we stick to our goals?

  • 2008-02-27
  • Secrets of the park

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