Nano in 2044; Terror in Iraq again; Admiral Hopper; and notes on Climate Change

View 828, Wednesday, June 11, 2014

John Quincy Adams on American Policy:

Whenever the standard of freedom and Independence has been or shall be unfurled, there will her heart, her benedictions and her prayers be. But she goes not abroad, in search of monsters to destroy. She is the well-wisher to the freedom and independence of all. She is the champion and vindicator only of her own.

She well knows that by once enlisting under other banners than her own, were they even the banners of foreign independence, she would involve herself beyond the power of extrication, in all the wars of interest and intrigue, of individual avarice, envy, and ambition, which assume the colors and usurp the standard of freedom.

Fourth of July, 1821


1700 Wednesday. It has been a busy day. I have seen a ton of stuff, none of it singularity making but some probably world changing in ways not so easily predicted. None of it will lead us that much closer to self-replicating computers that evolved by Lamarckian rather than Mendelian evolution.

I will be asked tonight to predict what things will be like in 2044, and I am going to say that everything I have seen here, including the stuff just in development, will almost certainly be available as an ap for whatever you are carrying for a telephone in 2044. Your pocket computer will have more than 4 terabytes of storage, and in all likelihood more than 900 terabytes. It will have 64 CPU’s each one capable of doing what your multiple CPU system does now and then some.

Some stuff like the electron microscope they hope to sell for under $1000, will need some equipment as well as the connection to your smart phone, but it won’t cost any $1000. More like $30 bucks including shipment, and only that much because you bought the deluxe model. It may well be part of a device that takes your pulse and blood pressure, and takes a blood sample, after which you instantly get your blood sugar and the other numbers, but also calls to schedule you for a prostate exam or an MRI if it thinks it has discovered some anomalies. Good luck on that if you’re dependent on VA, but maybe you’ll be smart enough to be in Kaiser, which will have an ap on your phone that looks at a whole bunch of stuff about you and scolds you for your bad diet habits.

I was rather amused by a presentation about building super regenerative receivers at the 10 micron size level. I first encountered regenerative and super regenerative circuits in high school where Brother Henry had us reading Andrew Crissell’s Understanding Radio and mucking about with circuits in the back room. I next encountered regenerative circuitry when the Air Force wanted me to put astronauts into a chamber and cook them at 400 degrees F (with an 80 F breathing air feed) while doing complex tasks. The flight surgeon demanded a medical quality EKG in real time as a condition, and in those days you did a medical quality EKG by lying down on a metal table and being restrained as they put electrodes on you and the results flowed out to moving pens which wrote on ink on moving paper. And I was to do this with an unrestrained subject in a noisy lab environment.

Out came the Boeing Engineering Analog Computers, about 50 of them, and a rack the size of a small wall. We took the signal, noise and all, that were getting from the subject, filtered out as much noise as we could, fed that as intake to the next set, and kept that up until we got a signal that the flight surgeon could read. In other words we built a big regenerative receiver. So that was roughly twenty years since I played with this stuff in Brother Henry’s back room, with vacuum tubes. Now it was transistorized BEACs. Twenty years after that if you went to hospital they harnessed you and your EKG as on display at the nurses station wherever you were in the hospital. Today it’s probably an ap for your iPhone or easily could be. So think twenty more years…

Anyway that’s what I will be talking about. Also mind/computer interfaces as I used, primitively, in Oath of Fealty (1981), and much more sophisticatedly in Starswarm, (1998). If you haven’t read them, they still hold up very well, and I can say this after being in this conference.

I’ve had a great time, I learned a lot, and it’s interesting to see where the real nanotechnology people are going and what they are doing; my experience up to now has been more with the nanotechnology fandom that sees swarms of millions of 20 nanometer bugs commanded by thought control doing their master’s bidding, while saving the earth from being turned in to green goop by runaway rapidly evolving self replicating nanobugs. That may happen, but it won’t be before 2044, and I doubt it will be before 2144. By then maybe we’ll have a handle on this stuff. Or we’ll be hit by an asteroid and it won’t matter…



Al Qaeda, in Iraq, now has U.S. military weapons and over 400 million in new financing

I don’t think any comment is necessary.

Most Respectfully,

Joshua Jordan, KSC

Percussa Resurgo

It was foreseeable from the moment they sent in Brenner as proconsul and he disbanded the Iraqi army. It was forseeable from the moment we did not tell the Iraqi’s we were their liberators but also their conquerors and there were certain conditions … We had no need to go in there, but having done it we had some obligations to leave them stable – but that is not a condition that can be brought about through Liberal Democracy in Iraq. The conquest of Iraq was not the End of History and part of the transformation of the world into a peaceful league of liberal democracies, and those who thought it would inevitably be so were not only dead wrong, but ideologically blinded, and ignorant of history. Few of them were my readers, alas.

There are similarities to Afghanistan, but this is not the time and place for that discussion.

This is a serious matter; how will President Obama react? And how will President Putin react?


This is what collapse looks like.

I think it unlikely the US will commit ground forces to stop the rout; what if we were to loan the Iraqis an air force ,as we did to Kosovo in that war? I assume it is neither in our interest to see Al Queda gain greater power in Iraq nor to allow Iraq to fall deeper into Iran’s orbit.


Brian P.


Not bloody likely.


I applaud the ends, but deplore the means.


This is not a Federal issue, yet the legal reasoning rests upon the specious ‘disparate impact’ penumbra of the (unconstitutional, in my view) ‘equal protection’ clause of the (again, unconstitutional, in my view) Fourteenth Amendment.


Roland Dobbins

Agreed on both counts. Discussion when I get home.


Naming the new cyber-security building a USNA

The suggestions seem to be trending — surprise, surprise — toward Admiral Grace Hopper.

In addition to being a computational genius, Admiral Hopper was possessed of a great deal of wisdom, viz: Arrange to be told you’re too old to do something as early as possible and get it over with.

I didn’t put that in quotes because I’m reasonably sure I’m just paraphrasing her.

She also told Naval Officers to quit managing and start leading which vignette ought to be tattooed onto a sensitive body part ….

Agreed. I had to follow her as a speaker. Twice. Once in San Diego and once in Karlsruh. A very tough act to follow. Amazing Grace!


Antarctica Ice Sheet Melt due to Volcano

Not climate change or global warming, but a volcano under the ice sheet that is larger than previously known. Global Warming Alarmists will ignore this story, of course.

Rick Hellewell

And no climate model yet has any explanation for the Viking Warm period or the Little Ice Age. They are simply ignored. The Earth has been several degrees warmer and several degrees colder than it is now in historical times, and all this is documented. The notion that the Gulf Stream affected Greenland, the Western Scottish Islands, the Eastern Scottish Islands, Belgium, Germany, Poland, and China, all reporting longer growing seasons and earlier spring in the Viking era, is too absurd to consider seriously. Not that I expect rationality to prevail. There are too many grants at stake.


For your reading pleasure:

No kiddin’, Sherlock,2IYZO,E1NJ7H,97JPO,1



Thursday AM:  packing up, get home at 2200 PDT, long day ahead.   All’s well.  It went well last night.


Freedom is not free. Free men are not equal. Equal men are not free.




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