Bob Marley “Jammin” One Love Peace Concert

Thank You Bob Marley!

Margie Perez speaks at the Democratic National Convention!

Our wonderful friend from New Orleans and the female vocalist from The Omega Project’s most recent recording “Drink Deep”, Margie Perez spoke at the Democratic National Convention last week in Denver. Margie is an amazing musician who obviously has a lot to say and isn’t afraid to speak the truth. I say Margie Perez for President 2012!

Check out Margies MySpace page and connect with her personally!

Also, Margie’s speech is 2min 41 secs long, which is about %25 of the time that the Republicans gave to Bush!

MARGIE PEREZ FOR PRESIDENT 2012!

Who or What are We Creating? – Transhumanism

Each day I read something regarding a major break though in science or technology. Each day something happens that would be monumental at any other moment in history, but we barely even notice it. We are reaching a point of take off in terms of what Moores Law and computing can show us. DNA Sequencing for the masses, Artificial Intelligence, A Theory of Everything, God like Machines, and many more wonders appear to be on humanities horizon. Cochlear implants, Verichip, and BrainGate show very clearly that humans are all too willing to to meld with their machines. But key questions are not being asked as a culture. Transhumanism attempts to ask some of the questions.

And many more. The world we live in is changing drastically. It appears that this generation has been given the task to “program” the next epoch of Space/Time. Wielding God like power, we will create an exponential reflection of our intentions and resources. But my question is, Who or What are we Creating?

Build your own multitouch table for $500 – $1000

‘Engineers at Eyebeam, an art and technology center based in New York, have created a scaled-down open-source version of Surface, called Cubit. By sharing the Cubit’s hardware schematics and software source code, the engineers are significantly reducing the cost of owning a multitouch table. But they’re also fostering innovation by giving engineers an open platform on which to develop novel multitouch applications–something that they’ve previously lacked.
Engineers are building inexpensive, tabletop, touch-screen displays and sharing the instructions online. Addie Wagenknecht, a fellow at Eyebeam, designed Cubit in an attempt to “demystify multitouch.” She and her collaborator Stefan Hechenberger “wanted to prove that anyone could build [a multitouch table] if they had a few simple things,” she says. In addition to making Cubit software available online, Wagenknecht is selling various do-it-yourself kits that include parts and instructions, aimed at people with a range of engineering skills. Putting together a personal multitouch table could cost anywhere from $500 to $1,000, depending on the type of hardware used, Wagenknecht says.’

Thanks to Technology Review for the story.

Visions of the Future: The Intelligence Revolution. With Michio Kaku

Will computers think for themselves? Will humans be able to reprogram our own biology, making us “super human”? Will our kids be born into a world where every item is “smart”. Michio Kaku, another one of my favorite modern philosophers and Great Minds tackles these questions in Visions of the Future: The Intelligence Revolution

This video does a great job illustrating the vast changes underway on our world. By 2020 a microchip with the computing power of a modern cellphone will cost about $.01. As this draws nearer, chips will begin to be embedded in everything truly leading to the “ubiquity era” with thousands of computers per user. Humans will then (if not already) begin hard-wiring our minds with more processing power and altering our DNA to dramatic results. Humans may no longer be Homo Sapien and may self selectively evolve into Cyber Sapiens.

THE SINGULARITY IS NEAR!

Question of the Day:
Do you think humans will achieve this great change in our very essence?

Cyborg Insects…

Insects linked with computers….   Its a brave new world my friends…

THE SINGULARITY IS NEAR!!

Microsoft creates ‘instant backing band’ for singers

Whether you’re a frustrated songwriter or a shower-time crooner, you may long to hear your lyrics put to music. New software from Microsoft promises to provide just that – instant musical accompaniment to singing.

The software, called MySong, was developed by Dan Morris and Sumit Basu at Microsoft’s research lab in Redmond, Washington, US, and Ian Simon at the University of Washington in Seattle.

“The idea is to let a creative but musically untrained individual get a taste of song writing and music creation,” Morris told New Scientist. “There was nothing out there that could take a sung vocal melody as an input and then generate appropriate chords to accompany it.” (Watch a video of the process here.)

Their software does two things: it generates a file containing the sequence of sung notes – a process known as “pitch tracking” – then uses that sequence to work out a suitable musical backdrop – a technique called “chord probability computation”.

Hear an example of vocal input, MySong’s automatically generated chords and a full musical arrangement after passing the arrangement through a program called Band-in-a-Box.

‘Elevator music’

Since people rarely sing at precise frequencies, MySong compares a sung melody to the 12 standard musical notes. It then feeds an approximate sequence of notes to the system’s chord probability computation algorithm. This algorithm has been trained, through analysis of 300 rock, pop, country and jazz songs, to recognise fragments of melody and chords that work well together, as well as chords that compliment each another.

Because there is no single “correct” chord accompaniment for any vocal melody, MySong produces a variety of chord sequence and possible accompaniments. To move between different accompaniments, a user slides an on-screen bar for “happy factor” and “jazz factor”.

“I suspect musicians will argue that this is another step towards homogenised elevator music for all,” says Peter Bentley, a computer scientist at University College London, whose team has previously coaxed computers into improvising jazz melodies. “But I see a big market for this, whether it’s liked by musicians or not.”

Cellphone version?

Researcher and composer Tod Machover of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology is also impressed with the system. “Interacting with a music creation system by using our own singing voice is the most interesting aspect to this software,” he says.

“The voice is our most intuitive and intimate interface and it’s one that has been curiously under-exploited in interactive systems,” Machover adds.

For MySong to be useful to untrained singers, however, Machover reckons it will need to be very forgiving for those who are “not be perfectly in-tune or accurate”.

Microsoft has yet to decide when or how it to market the technology. “There is nothing computationally demanding about MySong,” says Morris. “It could even run on a cellphone.”

MySong was demonstrated at the annual Computer Human Interaction meeting in Florence, Italy, this week.

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Big Thanks to NewScientistTech for the story.  Although the video is marketed lame, the concept is groundbreaking!  Combine software like this with Melodyne Direct Note Access and music has changed forever!  Musical revenue will totally shift to live shows.  Making music will become so common, so long tailish, that playing an actual instrument will become highly specialized.  With tools like Photoshop, Melodyne DNA, MySong, Facebook, Garageband, and a host of others, people growing up in today’s hyper computerized world will be some of the most creative and most productive of all Time.  THE SINGULARITY IS NEAR!

Documentary on THE WAR ON DRUGS

END THE WAR ON DRUGS!

SET THE CAPTIVES FREE!

Matrix-style virtual worlds ‘a few years away’

Are supercomputers on the verge of creating Matrix-style simulated realities? Michael McGuigan at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York, thinks so. He says that virtual worlds realistic enough to be mistaken for the real thing are just a few years away.

In 1950, Alan Turing, the father of modern computer science, proposed the ultimate test of artificial intelligence – a human judge engaging in a three-way conversation with a machine and another human should be unable to reliably distinguish man from machine.

A variant on this “Turing Test” is the “Graphics Turing Test”, the twist being that a human judge viewing and interacting with an artificially generated world should be unable to reliably distinguish it from reality.

“By interaction we mean you could control an object – rotate it, for example – and it would render in real-time,” McGuigan says.

Photoreal animation

Although existing computers can produce artificial scenes and textures detailed enough to fool the human eye, such scenes typically take several hours to render. The key to passing the Graphics Turing Test, says McGuigan, is to marry that photorealism with software that can render images in real-time – defined as a refresh rate of 30 frames per second.

McGuigan decided to test the ability of one of the world’s most powerful supercomputers – Blue Gene/L at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York – to generate such an artificial world.

Blue Gene/L possesses 18 racks, each with 2000 standard PC processors that work in parallel to provide a huge amount of processing power – it has a speed of 103 teraflops, or 103 trillion “floating point operations” per second. By way of comparison, a calculator uses about 10 floating operations per second.

In particular, McGuigan studied the supercomputer’s ability to mimic the interplay of light with objects – an important component of any virtual world with ambitions to mimic reality.

He found that conventional ray-tracing software could run 822 times faster on the Blue Gene/L than on a standard computer, even though the software was not optimised for the parallel processors of a supercomputer. This allowed it to convincingly mimic natural lighting in real time.

Not there yet

“The nice thing about this ray tracing is that the human eye can see it as natural,” McGuigan says. “There are actually several types of ray-tracing software out there – I chose one that was relatively easy to port to a large number of processors. But others might be faster and even more realistic if they are used in parallel computing.”

Although Blue Gene/L can model the path of light in a virtual world both rapidly and realistically, the speed with which it renders high-resolution images still falls short of that required to pass the Graphics Turing Test.

But supercomputers capable of passing the test may be just years away, thinks McGuigan. “You never know for sure until you can actually do it,” he says. “But a back-of-the-envelope calculation would suggest it should be possible in the next few years, once supercomputers enter the petaflop range – that’s 1000 teraflops.”

But others think that passing the Graphics Turing Test requires more than photorealistic graphics moving in real-time. Reality is not ‘skin deep’ says Paul Richmond at the University of Sheffield, UK. An artificial object can appear real, but unless it moves in a realistic way the eye won’t be fooled. “The real challenge is providing a real-time simulation that includes realistic simulated behaviour,” he says.

Fluid challenge

“I’d like to see a realistic model of the Russian ballet,” says Mark Grundland at the University of Cambridge. “That’s something a photographer would choose as a subject matter, and that’s what we should aim to convey with computers.”

Grundland also points out that the Graphics Turing Test does not specify what is conveyed in the virtual world scene. “If all that is there is a diffusely-reflecting sphere sitting on a diffusely-reflecting surface, then we’ve been able to pass the test for many years now,” he says. “But Turing didn’t mean for his vision to come true so quickly.”

McGuigan agrees that realistic animation poses its own problems. “Modelling that fluidity is difficult,” he says. “You have to make sure that when something jumps in the virtual world it appears heavy.” But he remains optimistic that animation software will be up to the task. “Physical reality is about animation and lighting,” he says. “We’ve done the lighting now – the animation will follow.

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Thanks for the amazing article to Technology.NewScientist.com

Health Council Warns Of Goverment Plan To Claim Ownership Of Every Newborn’s DNA

A prominent Health Organization has warned that there is an ongoing semi-covert movement by state and federal governments to claim ownership of every newborn baby’s DNA for the purpose of genetic research without the consent of individual citizens.

A pending bill on the floor of the Minnesota House and Senate will strip citizens of genetic privacy and DNA ownership rights, The Citizens Council on Healthcare has warned.

“Today, a state genetic privacy law requires informed parent consent for government testing, ownership and research on the DNA of the newest Minnesota residents. The Minnesota Department of Health wants to eliminate the informed consent requirements. A bill to remove consent requirements for government ownership and genetic research will soon be voted on by the Minnesota House and Senate.” The CCHC website explains.

“Thus far, the state of Minnesota has illegally collected and claims ownership to the DNA of 780,000 children (soon to be voting adults) and has provided the DNA of 42,210 children to genetic researchers without parent consent. Approximately, 73,000 children are born in Minnesota every year. About 4.2 million children are born across the nation. All of them are losing their genetic privacy and DNA ownership rights.” the organization’s report continues.

The state treats the activity as an “opt out” program, whereby if the parents of the newborn infant do not specifically opt out of the process, the state presumes its has “informed consent” and that the parents have opted in.

CCHC President Twila Brase has warned that the databases housing the DNA could form the basis for a new eugenics movement, the practice of “perfecting” the human race through genetic manipulation, previously endorsed by Planned Parenthood founder Margaret Sanger, and toyed with by the likes of Adolf Hitler.

Ms. Brase explained in a statement last month that state Health Department officials are now seeking exemption for the so called “DNA Warehouse” from Minnesota privacy law. This would enable state officials to continue to take the DNA of newborn infants without consent.

Essentially this would mean that eventually every person’s DNA would be collected at birth, warehoused by the state in what is known as a “genomic biobank”, and sold or given away to private or governmental genetic researchers, who may manipulate, alter or splice the DNA in any way they see fit.

Such information would represent a goldmine to employers, insurance companies, medical institutions, and big pharma.

Under such conditions we are faced with the prospect of a society that is literally the mirror image of the nightmarish vision outlined by Aldous Huxley in his 1932 novel Brave New World, where individuals are categorized in a social hierarchy according to their genetic traits.

Watch Twila Brase explain the possible consequences of the pending DNA profiling legislation:


Ms. Brase has been warning of the ongoing move for a a number of years. In January 2007 she issued a written testimony to the Minnesota legislature on the unethical and hidden uses of harvested DNA by the state.

Read the 18 page PDF document here.

Recently, Minnesota based researcher and activist Marti Oakley revealed that, according to her polling, the majority of parents or grand parents of newborns have no idea that this is happening.

She writes:

Further, not one knew that they had the right to demand the blood and tissue samples be destroyed after 45 days per written request. Even had they known, and the samples were destroyed (you would have no way of knowing if they really were) the information gleaned from them would still be available and on file…..in perpetuity.

Also unknown to at least the new parents in Minnesota, is that once that 45 days has lapsed, the state now claims that they “own” the DNA of that child.

Though the Minnesota case has received recent public attention, such DNA harvesting is not restricted to that state and is being undertaken nationwide.

The National Conference of State Legislatures lists for all 50 states, as well as the District of Columbia, the various statutes or regulatory provisions under which newborns’ DNA is being collected.

DNA of newborns has been harvested, tested, stored and experimented with by all 50 states. In addition, all 50 states are now routinely providing these results to the Department of Homeland Security.

In the UK, a similar DNA harvesting program was rejected in 2005 by The Human Genetics Commission, who cited cost and ethical problems in a report to government ministers.

However, DNA profiling of all newborn babies has since been called for by lawmakers and most recently by senior police officers.

Oppose the Minnesota Department of Health’s refusal to fully inform parents

Currently, there is a monumental effort under way by The Citizens Council on Health Care to petition the state to oppose illegal State government ownership of the blood, DNA and genetic test results of newborn citizens in Minnesota. http://www.cchconline.org/petition/babyDNA2007.php

The CCHC is calling on Governor Tim Pawlenty to direct the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to comply with Minnesota state privacy law, to fully inform parents of the genetic testing process and their legal rights–and to dismantle MDH’s illegal warehouse of newborn citizen DNA. (Contact Sue Jeffers directly at: S1U2E3@aol.com )

For more resources on this issue visit the CCHC website.

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Thanks to infowars.net for a great article!

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