Economic Aspects Of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World

Vintage 1953 Brave New World that sold for .35 cents. Cover art features fleeing, scantily clad man and woman and the words "The mighty novel of a soulless, streamlined Eden -- and the two who escape it.
Vintage 1953 Brave New World cover.

A longtime fan of fantasy and sci-fi, I’ve recently delved into dystopian novels. In doing so, I finally read the classic Brave New World (1933) by prolific British novelist Aldous Huxley (1894-1963). Before I get to the problems I had with the book, I must say I read with great interest about the “utopia” with its planned economy, where people’s whole lives are determined before birth and people are designed to have no morals (besides the indoctrinated ones, which exist only for utilitarian reasons).

Spoilers following — sort of. I won’t touch on what happens to any of the individual characters. Continue reading “Economic Aspects Of Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World”

#Leaveitblank (with regards to census citizenship question) is like Tor?

ICE police arresting elderly hispanic.
ICE arresting immigrants is one of the fears that will result in a less accurate census if the immigrant question is added.

The movement behind the #leaveitblank Twitter hashtag teaches us the importance of opting out of invasive policies even when said policies have no obviously-direct effects on us at first glance.

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Some Companies Shortchange Workers by Casting Lots With Their Wages

Image of lottery balls representing the gambling epidemic in the United States.
Wage or bonus lotteries take advantage of the gambler’s high. Image courtesy of Max Pixel.

The 21st century is plagued by gambling. In fact, gambling is one of the United States’ fastest growing industries,  according to the California Council of Problem Gambling. Just a few years ago, Savannah’s former police chief (Willie Lovett) was sentenced to federal prison for colluding with gambling networks.

Now, people with similar amounts of power/authority have found how to cash in on the addictive parts of the brain. They exploit such tendencies towards gambling addiction in their workers. Continue reading “Some Companies Shortchange Workers by Casting Lots With Their Wages”

Book Review: Origin by Dan Brown

The Guggeheim Bilbao Museum features modern art and provides the opening scene of Origin by Dan Brown, the book reviewed in this post.
Dan Brown’s Origin begins at Spain’s Guggenheim Museum (modern art) where Harvard professor of symbology Robert Langdon witnesses the unveiling of a discovery that “will change the face of science forever.” The ultramodern museum’s event is hosted by billionaire futurist, a former student of Langdon’s.

Origin, part of Dan Brown’s Robert Langdon series (includes Da Vinci Code), had a much better science to social life ratio — something I appreciate — then almost any book I have read, and I’ve read stacks of sci-fi and science-based novels. Plus, and very important to me, the science in it all seemed realistic and plausible.

While Origin emphasizes science, it leaves lots of wiggle-room for spirituality by 1) disclaiming that it wouldn’t try to solve for “Time = 0” (right at or before the Big Bang) and 2) by answering in the most
literal sense…SPOILER ALERT

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Trump > Elected Dictators > Monarchs

Thinking about Trump today led me to thinking about elected dictators. The Yale professor who compared Donald Trump to a fascist dictator of the 1930s came close. I think if it weren’t for the balance and checks system in our government,  I could see Donald turning America into a dictatorship. Trump’s always admired dictators and doesn’t hide aspirations. That doesn’t mean his aspirations can’t hurt our country.

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Conservation of Otherwise Wasted Heat to Save Energy and Stave off our Universe’s Heat Death

Although energy cannot be created or destroyed, it is all the time converting into a useless form called “waste heat.” When Satoshi Nakamoto (the name used by the unknown person(s) who invented Bitcoin) created Bitcoin was Nakamoto expecting it to never take off as it did?

Or did he/she/they come to the conclusion that a cryptographically secure proof-of-work couldn’t be based on anything useful (such as Folding@home type work)? Regardless, shouldn’t Folding@home nodes or mine coins, use old CPUs and GPU’s (that otherwise clog landfills) but can provide energy to electrical heaters, instead of using giant resistors/coils/elements?

Continue reading “Conservation of Otherwise Wasted Heat to Save Energy and Stave off our Universe’s Heat Death”

The Diamond Age: Book Review & Critique

A longtime fan of science fi and a lifetime fan of science, I prefer my sci-fi heavy on the science, light on other elements and, of course, well written. I had yet to find a book as satisfying as Neuromancer, but the Hugo and Locus-winning The Diamond Age: Or, a Young Lady’s Illustrated Primer, an archetypal, hard sci-fi written by Neal Stephenson is the best I’ve read since Gibson’s masterpiece.  Continue reading “The Diamond Age: Book Review & Critique”

Solution to Gaps in Mesh Networks

Although huge patches of uncovered space would exist in remote areas (where not other devices are in WiFi/Bluetooth range), nothing about mesh networking prohibits antennas. Those owning existing cell sites/base receiver stations (or who create new ones after the switch to mesh networking) would simply be automatically compensated (in the same way that people are already incentivized to contribute to other decentralized tech, such as miners in Bitcoin or computer notes in Etherium).

Continue reading “Solution to Gaps in Mesh Networks”