Author: Peter

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Designing Out Pain

Can we re-design ourselves to eliminate pain? It might be possible to alter the human genome to eliminate or reduce pain signals, to help individuals with chronic pain syndromes, or those who literally have a painful genetic inheritance, without the need of constant and sometimes dangerous pharmacologic interventions.

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Friday Brain Food: Steve Omohundro on Self Improving Artificial Intelligence

“Let an ultraintelligent machine be defined as a machine that can far surpass all the intellectual activities of any man however clever. Since the design of machines is one of these intellectual activities, an ultraintelligent machine could design even better machines; there would then unquestionably be an ‘intelligence explosion,’ and the intelligence of man would be left far behind. Thus the first ultraintelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make.” ~ I.J. Good

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Invited Essay — Future of Work: Musical Performance in Virtual Reality

Today’s guest post continues our theme on the Future of Work in a somewhat different direction: the performing arts and music.

The rise of digital music and music sharing has challenged the existing economics of the music business. And at the same time these very technologies offer artists new ways to connect with fans, customers, and other artists. A shared virtual reality environment presents an entirely new creative means for performing music and sharing music and other art as well as potentially providing a platform for selling or exchanging it.

Linda Rogers has been organizing musical performance in Second Life for half a decade. Linda shares some of the history, issues, and challenges she encountered along the way to five years of virtual reality performances in which she quite arguably and somewhat accidentally invents an entirely new art form — the shared virtual reality musical performance.

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The Future of Work – The Past and Future of the Desk

As the Singularity approaches, the very nature of work and many of the tools we use on a daily basis will change radically. Chances are that most of you reading this article are sitting at something called a desk right now. But what are desks and why do we have them? What is the future of the desk? What about mobile and augmented reality technologies? Can’t they make the very idea of a desk obsolete?