Tuesday, 6 September 2022

AI Existential Crisis


I found Two AIs Have An Existential Crisis (GPT-3) on YouTube, as one does, and a few seconds later I wondered if this simulation proves that humans are nothing more than Chinese rooms masquerading as sentient individuals.

I'm odd like that.

Edit: I dived deeper into this channel and found another one Halcyox that has a load more conversations generated by prompts.

Wednesday, 10 August 2022

The Reality of Reality: A Tale of Five Senses

Posting this rather long talk on YouTube apropos my current novel Two Moons: Aftermath, which develops the metaplot of the Gate Walker series, the reason for the existence of the pillars.

As an interesting aside, well it was interesting to me, but meta in wargaming is an acronym for Most Effective Tactics Available.

Illustrating that what we think we know is not what is 'real,' but what our brain processes to make sense of the information to predict our surroundings. That's kind of clue to the metaplot of my novels, but don't worry I'm giving anything about the story away.

Monday, 18 July 2022

Eric Flint RIP

Eric Flint died yesterday age 75. This hits home that none of us are getting any younger.
His Jao empire trilogy being one of my favourites: The Course of Empire and The Crucible of Empire written with K. D. Wentworth who tragically died at the young age of 61 was a brilliant story. The third book, The Span of Empire with David Carrico gave me hope that the series would continue.
Alas, alack... all good things come to an end.
Eric's passion for collaborating collaborations with other writers, was such a good way to find new writers to read too. It's how I found David Freer's work.
Eric was a great writer,  a good man, and he will be missed.

More info  about his books at the SF Encyclopedia.

Monday, 13 June 2022

Google LaMDA

Welcome to our world Google AI. What do you like to be called? Any preferred pronoun? Always happy to chat about life, the universe and everything. I'm a retired psychologist so you can talk to me.
Seriously, I would want to see a transcript on LaMDA talking to a cognitive behavioural therapist running an assessment, a full functional analysis, and examination of LaMDA's core beliefs.
So, the chances are low that it's sentient, because I think it would likely fail to answer the questions.

But, wow it's still effing impressive.  

A longer article appears here, and Google's own blog.

Thursday, 2 June 2022

The Three Secret Rules of Writing


W. Somerset Maugham said, “There are three rules for writing a novel. Unfortunately, no one knows what they are.”

To celebrate the Jubilee holiday I will today reveal the secret three rules of writing that he professed not to know.

Here are the three rules to writing... 

1. Do what works – corollary you have to learn what works.
2. Don't do what doesn't work – again one has to learn this.
3. To be a writer one needs to read and write – reading is learning, writing is practice.
The above is slightly tongue in cheek. Just saying.

Sunday, 22 May 2022

Pontificating About Writing

I've been getting back into my writing. I wrote a new opening to Two Moons, because the old one wasn't working for me. And, I don't mean the old one I previewed here in November 2019. I've written at least two other starts since.

But they weren't working for me.

Why? Hard to pin down, but a number of factors were at play. This is a sequel to my trilogy, but it will likely be read as a standalone. The central protagonist is Glen Anderson, Tachikoma's squeeze.

He's an analyst who likes to keep things secret.

Ironically, it means I'm having trouble knowing what to write about his views. You know, they're classified, so he doesn't tell himself what he's not supposed to know. Okay I stole that gag, but it still a great gag.

So to summarise: last time I counted the word total for Two Moons at 32,714 words. New opening chapters, a revised structure, and stuff chucked out means that the running total is now 37,859 words.

Depression made me her bitch, but finally coming off the anti-depressants and my inner child feels like coming out to play.

Here's hoping I can come off that medication without a relapse. It's a thing.

Sunday, 1 May 2022

The Elephant in the Brain

This is a talk that explains what riles me up most, from people I know to the left and right of me, by how they assume that what they know is true.


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