Basicly, information is all we have...
And what our brains use
to construct our world.
Interestingly, even something as fundamental as gravity
might be directly linked to the concept of information. At least
according to Erik Verlinde. See: ''A new theory of Gravity''.
Rather complicated stuff, of course. And we will probably, eventually,
need all the help we can in form of advanced AI systems etc.
to help us learn what gravity is really all about.
And, talking about AI, tested Google Home November 2018... Well, well...
You can listen in on my ''Hey Google Home'' chat here.
Clearly, getting it, AI, right is all about information and knowledge.
And finding the right kind of information is, of course, all about learning.
Indeed, learning is the essential part of any half decent cognition system
(AI & natural intelligence). And it would, of course, be really nice to know a lot more about
how we, humans, actually learn. Essential knowledge
as we try to build these ever smarter AI systems.
Which we will do, of course. And, btw, Benedict Carey's book, ''How we learn'' might be
a good starting point (for those interested in learning more
Especially, in a world, where everything changes
all the time: Cars, music, politics, computers, Lenovo laptops etc. and yes, even, humans.
How we learn, even when we sleep.
Benedict Carey's book ''How we learn'' is packed with useful information.
I especially found his distinction between Storage Strength and Retrieval Strength useful.
Storage strength: Is a measure of how well learned something is. It builds up
as we study something, and even more so with use. Retrieval strength: Is a measure of easy a piece of information comes to mind.
Which increases with use. But it drops off quickly without reinforcement.
People can only pull up a limited number of items in connection with a given cue.
We only want the most relevant details (in a given context) available.
But storage strength makes sure, that old tricks can be relearned easily if necessary.
Carey's ideas about ''sleep'' are also quite interesting.
According to Carey:
REM sleep is used by the brain to
''strip away'' feelings experienced at the time
an emotional memory is formed, which leaves us with
the actualy information. A sort of ''night-time therapy session''...
In a ''stage 2'' of sleeping we focus on motor learning
(people deprieved of that kind of sleep don't learn particular well, when it comes to
music, athletics etc.).
In ''stage 3'' and ''stage 4'' sleep help
us order newly learned facts, names and formulas, i.e. declarative memory.
So, unconscious downtime in sleep clarifies memory
and sharpens skills. I.e. sleep is (also) learning.
Again, sounds plausible!
For more about sleep, see the sleep section of my Minsky article, here.
Interesting hypothesis by Erik Verlinde for gravity:
Newtonian gravity works well for planets, but not for black holes. Einsteinian gravity works well for black holes, but not for galaxies, where dark matter and energy must be postulated to account for the speeds of orbiting cosmic objects. Emergent gravity should be able to account for all three.
Along the way in the presentation Verlinde describes how the amount of information in a Black hole
is determined by the area of black hole horizon.
Since a black hole's mass determines the size of its event horizon, this gave a natural place for the entropy of a black hole to exist: on the surface area of the event horizon. All of a sudden, black holes had an enormous entropy, based on the number of quantum bits that could be encoded on an event horizon of a particular size.
How much? Well:
Which, according to Hawking and others, leads to some rather interesting results. According to Ethan Siegel:
But anything that has an entropy also has a temperature, which means it radiates. As Hawking famously demonstrated, black holes emit radiation of a particular (blackbody) spectrum and temperature, defined by the mass of the black hole that it's coming from.
So, black holes now not only have mass, charge and spin they are even more interesting than that:
And have things like temperature, emitted radiation, and eventually evaporated over time.
The black hole information paradox, is that all the information that came into the black hole through the event horizon of the black hole, once it evaporates,
has left no trace in our observable Universe.
No good, if we believe that information cannot evaporate. So, the radiation that's emitted should somehow contain this information,
meaning that a Hawking radiation is a somewhat more complex thing.
While Hawking's original calculations demonstrate that evaporation via Hawking radiation destroys whatever information was imprinted on the black hole's event horizon, modern thought is that something must happen to encode that information in the outgoing radiation.
In the video, Verlinde then describes/hints how
emergent gravity can be described through the use of entropy.
In the end trying to come up with a theory that could attempt to describe what things like e.g. dark energy really is.
I.e. using the information within spheres/black holes idea to give us gravity, that we can observe.
Only four-five percent of the Universe is visible. What is the rest?
Still, only a hint towards an answer, but interesting nontheless.
Philosophically, it should be noted that ''information'' increasingly appears to be the
metaphor used to described the Universe. We do indeed live in an Information Age.
Google Home, Smart Speaker & Home Assistant, was launched in Denmark in the autumn of 2018.
Google Home speakers enable users to speak voice commands to interact with services through Google's intelligent personal assistant called Google Assistant. A large number of services, both in-house and third-party, are integrated, allowing users to listen to music, control playback of videos or photos, or receive news updates entirely by voice. Google Home devices also have integrated support for home automation, letting users control smart home appliances with their voice.
Obviously, I had to take the danish version out for a test drive just after it was
released (November 2018).