Ep 7: Our Coming AR Dystopia

This episode focuses on the our coming Augmented Reality dystopia.

Audio production by Steven Toepell of Bohemian Passport Inc.

TRANSCRIPT (Not exact)
This episode is a followup to a previous episode, on the Simulation Hypothesis. You don’t need to listen to that episode first, but I’d recommend it. It’s a good episode. Among other ideas, I present a way that, even if the world outside us right now is 100% real, even if we don’t live inside anything like a computer simulation, there are forces that will push us to build an all encompassing simulated world, or some kind of virtual overlay to our existing world, and it will almost certainly be driven forward by a desire to control and manipulate.

(more…)

Ep 5: Through the Simulation Hypothesis, Darkly

This episode focuses on the simulation hypothesis, with a novel approach to how simulated worlds might arise and what might be their true purpose.

Transcript (not exact):

In this episode of The Filter I’m going to discuss the simulation hypothesis, the idea that the reality we perceive is actually something akin to a computer simulation. Along the way I’ll present ideas about how such a simulation might have come to exist, and about what our purpose in it might be Some of these ideas are, so far as I can tell, completely novel and, in some sense, much darker than than any other theory of why such a simulation might exist.

(more…)

Search Engines and Common Queries

I’ve noticed that search engines, especially Google but also DuckDuckGo, seem to be optimizing for common types of queries, at the expense of less common ones. So if I want to find an Indian restaurant in a specific city, that works great. But if I want to find a restaurant with bench seating, that’s a much harder query to get answered. Google will fight you with your terms, replace with similar words, or ignore search terms, even if you use the plus operator, even if you put quotes around the term you don’t want dropped. Based on so much search data, Google’s algorithm now has a very strong opinion about what it thinks I want, and if the exact combination of words I’m looking for falls outside that scope, my query is internally munged to fit a more common pathway.

The Expert Locksmith’s dilemma

I’m going to call this the Expert Locksmith’s Dilemma, or just Locksmith’s Dilemma for short.

Suppose you decide to become a locksmith because you enjoy picking locks. It’s, challenging, fun, a nice mix of problem solving and manual dexterity, that ends with a nice endorphin rush when you “win”.

As a novice to journeyman locksmith, your job is a lot like how you imagined it to be. Maybe there’s more sitting in traffic than you expected, as you drive from one client to another, but there’s also lots of time spent puzzling out how to get people back into their cars and houses, fiddling with locks, learning new techniques and hardware, and getting to use cool tools like the Slim Jim (that long metal that slides into a car door to pop open the lock).

(more…)