Entries from April 2008 ↓

Dell M1530

I just got myself this beautiful laptop.

However, I got the Sound Blaster Audigy upgrade – without reading the fine print. It’s only a software upgrade (what the hell??) which means it’s really not worth the extra cash… especially since I’ll be using Ubuntu most of the time. Damn it Dell, you were so close to getting a very happy customer. Now I just feel cheated.

Thus, happy with the hardware and build of the laptop, not so happy with deceptive marketing strategies.

Social dynamics and politics

I’ve been reading a little about social dynamics and what makes people attractive. There is the obvious and oft mentioned confidence, but another one is a lack of response to criticism or insult. Or rather, not being dramatic about things. If you respond, you give those people acknoledgement to whatever their frame was (a frame is basically a viewpoint), you are acknowledging their frame has value and thus are accepting whatever their insult/complaint was about. If you ignore it, by just not acknowledging it, or by acting as if what they said was just odd, then you are not buying into their frame.

What gets me, is that the opposition in political debates and in the media almost ALWAYS is complaining or reacting to something the incumbent does. This, in my opinion, lowers their value. Instead, I’d be immensely more impressed if they worked with the incumbent, subtley trying to mould policies to be more inline with their values. Or by offering alternatives, but not by blaming the incumbent for a problem. Just state “this is the way things are now” – don’t go down the path of blame, it’s pointless. Work together for change and improvement, demonstrate WHY you think something will be an improvement over current circumstances. Do all this, and you as a politician, and as a political party, will look like you have value, like you should be in power if you are not already, instead of a whiny little bitch.

Without stimulus the mind is not alive

This is my hypothesis. The mind is not a object but a process, it takes information from the outside world and transforms it into pattern. That pattern is not the mind, it’s just the way the mind sustains itself from moment to moment. That pattern still exists when you die, albeit temporarily until decay sets in, but we aren’t alive because the mind isn’t receiving any new input.

Now that doesn’t mean a consciousness can’t be revived, the pattern is still there, and if the process can be restarted then I suspect the consciousness would continue as if nothing happen. One moment about to die, the next revived. This is essentially what proponents of cryogenics expect to occur.

Did I just contradict myself, by saying that consciousness can be revived from the pattern, even though I claimed the pattern wasn’t the mind? I don’t believe so. The pattern is the painting, the mind is painter. In humans, the painter is the physiological processes that generate the electrical signals shooting through our body and that update the neuronal structure in our brain.