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Oct 9, 2013

Quantum Metamaterial and the Feasibility of Invisiblity Cloaks

Posted by in categories: engineering, futurism, humor, military, transparency

Meta-materials — materials that have been engineered to have properties that absolutely do not exist in nature — such as negative refraction — are unraveling interesting possibilities in future engineering. The discovery of negative refraction has led to the creation of invisibility cloaks, for example, which seamlessly bend light and other electromagnetic radiation around an object, though such are normally restricted to cumbersome laboratory experiments with split-ring resonators and/or restricted to an insufficient slice of spectrum.

A recent article in ExtremeTech drew attention to the world’s first quantum meta-material, created recently by a team of German material scientists at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. It is believed such quantum meta-material can overcome the main problem with traditional meta-materials based on split-ring resonators, which can only be tuned to a small range of frequencies and not conducive to operate across a useful slice of spectrum. While fanciful applications such as quantum birefringence and super-radiant phase transitions are cited it is perhaps invisibility cloaks that until very recently seemed a forte of science fiction.

From Fiction - The Invisible Man

Breakthroughs at the National Tsing-Hua University in Taiwan have also made great strides in building quantum invisibility cloaks, and as the arXiv blog on TechnologyReview recently commented ‘invisibility cloaks are all the rage these days’. With such breakthroughs, these technologies may soon find mass take-up in future consumer products & security, and also have abundant military uses — where it may find the financial stimulus to advance the technology to its true capabilities. Indeed researchers in China have been looking into how to mass-produce invisibility cloaks from materials such as Teflon. We’ll all be invisible soon.

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Oct 8, 2013

A Reminder to every Citizen of a Planet including its Space Station

Posted by in categories: existential risks, particle physics

Science is based on dialog. Not a single colleague including Hawking and his crew contradicts my safety-relevant finding for 5 years. This fact can only have one of two reasons:
(1) The finding is so embarrassingly stupid that to take it up would suffice to soil the respondent.
(2) The finding harks back so deeply to the young Einstein that it causes fear to tread upon.

One country – my own – singlehandedly left CERN in response (only to surreptitiously return under non-publicized pressure).

Obviously the offered result (“gothic-R theorem”) has historical dimensions. Everyone’s survival is affected by it probability-wise if it is valid. We “live in an interesting time” as the Chinese proverb goes.

800 newspapers reported on the theorem in 2008. Only Aljazeera remained four years later. There is a “curfew of silence” obeyed by my colleagues. Not a single counterargument is in the literature against my result published in 2008 and its many sequels.

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Oct 2, 2013

The book “The Human Race to the Future” is free today

Posted by in categories: futurism, human trajectories

The book “The Human Race to the Future” (pub. by Lifeboat Foundation) will be available FREE during the day *today* (Thurs. Oct. 3). Digital edition, of course! Feel free to spread the word… and happy reading.
- The author

(Download link)

Oct 2, 2013

Ruling the Rhetoric on North Korea: A Pedagogical Perspective

Posted by in categories: business, education, ethics, geopolitics, military, policy

As the Western media and governments continue poking fun and demonizing a very misunderstood country, there are a group of people who are taking it upon themselves in ignoring the propaganda and instead reaching out with compassion and understanding. These people are visiting and working in North Korea. They’re not North Koreans, but the love and connection they’ve gained with the North Korean people is real and deserve to have their stories told.

DMZ Northern Commander and former American commander, Michael Bassett, hug during the April 2013 Period of Brinksmanship. (Photo credit Joseph Ferris)

DMZ Northern Commander and former American commander, Michael Bassett, hug during the April 2013 Period of Brinksmanship. (Photo credit Joseph Ferris)

I’ve interviewed a few people of importance in gaining greater insight into the country, its people, its military, and its government. It is my goal in providing an open venue for them to speak out and hopefully gain enough attention for others to follow suit.

Here I’ve interviewed Michael Bassett and Felix Abt. Mr. Bassett is a decorated Army Veteran who holds a BA in International Communication from the American University in Washington DC, a graduate certificate in North Korean Affairs from Yonsei University’s Graduate School of International Studies in Seoul, South Korea, and is currently working on his MA in Public Diplomacy from the American University.

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Oct 1, 2013

H+ Poetry: A Cosmist’s Tale

Posted by in categories: life extension, media & arts, philosophy

This poem had originally appeared on Transhumanity.

Opt Not for Death

A cosmist’s cosmological comet is in correlation
with the connotational confrontation of dreams,
Dreams that are only dreamt by the dreary of death,
Death only dreamt when no dreams are left.
For what is left than the dichotomy of life and naught,
foretold by the whispers of our ancestors’ ancestors? (more…)

Sep 29, 2013

In a Jobless Economy we need Indemnification for Influence

Posted by in categories: business, economics, futurism

originally posted @Ntegrationalism

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Sep 26, 2013

Grindhouse Wetware — Support Open Source Transhumanism

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, open source

Grindhouse Wetware is a collective of makers and engineers founded on a basic principle – human augmentation should be accessible and open. All of our devices are built off of open source platforms. This allows our users to peer into the hardware and code of their implanted device and truly control their augmented experience. Grindhouse Wetware’s devices are tailored to Makers and DIY Transhumanists that want to build a specific, unique augmentation. What do you want to be?

After three years of development, our flagship project – Circadia, is in its final stages. Grindhouse Wetware is seeking financial support from individuals or organizations to facilitate the production of this device.

The Circadia implant records bio-medical data and transmits it to the user’s phone via bluetooth. Instead of a snapshot of the user’s state of health, the Circadia records the up-to-date status of the their well being. Grindhouse Wetware firmly believes that once an implant has been installed in an individual, it becomes a part of their person. As such, the data generated by the Circadia belongs to the user.

If you are interested in supporting Grindhouse Wetware and the Circadia implant, please contact me at [email protected] or 631−715−9209

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Sep 22, 2013

Peer-to-Peer Science: The Century-Long Challenge to Respond to Fukushima

Posted by in categories: engineering, existential risks, nuclear energy, open access

Peer-to-Peer Science

The Century-Long Challenge to Respond to Fukushima

Emanuel Pastreich (Director)

Layne Hartsell (Research Fellow)

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Sep 17, 2013

Space-Mining For Our Fastest Depleting Resource: Helium

Posted by in categories: economics, engineering, futurism, physics, robotics/AI, space, sustainability

Most of us know helium as that cheap inert lighter-than-air gas we use to fill party balloons and inhale to increase voice-pitch as a party trick for kids. However, helium has much more important uses to humanity — from medical (e.g. MRIs), military and defense (submarine detectors use liquid helium to clean up noisy signals), next-generation nuclear reactors, space shuttles, solar telescopes, infra-red equipment, diving, arc welding, particle physics research (the super-magnets in particle colliders rely on liquid helium), the manufacture of many digital devices, growing silicon crystals, the production of LCDs and optical fibers [1].

The principal reason helium is so important is due to its ultra-low boiling-point and inert nature making it the ultimate coolant of the human race. As the isotope helium-3, helium is also used in nuclear fusion research [2]. However, our Earth supplies of helium are being used at an unprecedented rate and could be depleted within a generation [4] and at the current rate of consumption we will run out within 25 to 30 years. As the gas is often thought of as a cheap gas it is often wasted. However, those who understand the situation, such as Prof Richardson, co-chair of a recent US National Research Council inquiry into the coming helium shortage, warn that the gas is not cheap due to the supply being inexhaustible, but because of the Helium Privatisation Act passed in 1996 by the US Congress.

Helium only accounts for 0.00052% of the Earth’s atmosphere and the majority of the helium harvested comes from beneath the ground being extracted from minerals or tapped gas deposits. This makes it one of the rarest elements of any form on the planet. However, the Act required the helium stores [4] held underground near Amarillo in Texas to be sold off at a fixed rate by 2015 regardless of the market value, to pay off the original cost of the reserve. The Amarillo storage facility holds around half the Earth’s stocks of helium: around a billion cubic meters of the gas. The US currently supplies around 80 percent of the world’s helium supplies, and once this supply is exhausted one can expect the cost of the remaining helium on Earth to increase rapidly — as this is in all practicality quite a non-renewable resource.

There is no chemical way of manufacturing helium, and the supplies we have originated in the very slow radioactive alpha decay that occurs in rocks. It has taken 4.7 billion years for the Earth to accumulate our helium reserves, which we will have exhausted within about a hundred years of the US’s National Helium Reserve having been established in 1925. When this helium is released to the atmosphere, in helium balloons for example, it is lost forever — eventually escaping into space [5][6]. So what shall we do when this crucial resource runs out? Well, in some cases liquid nitrogen (−195°C) may be adopted as a replacement — but in many cases liquid nitrogen cannot be used as a stand alone coolant as tends to be trickier to work with (triple point and melting point at around −210°C) — so the liquid helium is used because it is capable of staying liquid at the extreme cool temperatures required. No more helium means no more helium liquid (−269°C) that is used to cool the NMR (nuclear magnetic resonance apparels), and in other machines such as MRI scanners. One wonders therefore must we look towards space exploration to replenish our most rare of resources on Earth?

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Sep 16, 2013

Is Bitcoin the Beginning of the End?

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, human trajectories
Hieronymous Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights

The following dystopian vision of the future was just shared with my by a friend:

…“What is a Citadel?” you might wonder. Well, by the time Bitcoin became worth 1,000 dollar, services began to emerge for the “Bitcoin rich” to protect themselves as well as their wealth. It started with expensive safes, then began to include bodyguards, and today, “earlies” (our term for early adapters), as well as those rich whose wealth survived the “transition” live in isolated gated cities called Citadels, where most work is automated. Most such Citadels are born out of the fortification used to protect places where Bitcoin mining machines are located. The company known as ASICminer to you is known to me as a city where Mr. Friedman rules as a king.

In my world, soon to be your world, most governments no longer exist, as Bitcoin transactions are done anonymously and thus most governments can enforce no taxation on their citizens. Most of the success of Bitcoin is due to the fact that Bitcoin turned out to be an effective method to hide your wealth from the government. Whereas people entering “rogue states” like Luxemberg, Monaco and Liechtenstein were followed by unmanned drones to ensure that governments know who is hiding wealth, no such option was available to stop people from hiding their money in Bitcoin.


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