The Null Device
Richard Dawkins, writing with characteristic flair about the "convergence" of science and religion: (Forbes)
Similar mileage is made of Heisenberg's uncertainty principle ("Aren't we all, in a very real sense, uncertain?"), fuzzy logic ("Yes, it's okay for you to be fuzzy, too"), chaos and complexity theory (the butterfly effect, the Platonic, hidden beauty of the Mandelbrot Set--you name it, somebody has mysticized it and turned it into dollars). You can buy any number of books on "quantum healing," not to mention quantum psychology, quantum responsibility, quantum morality, quantum immortality, and quantum theology. I haven't found a book on quantum feminism, quantum financial management, or Afro-quantum theory, but give it time.
Now you too can have the mental skills of an autistic savant: (New Scientist)
"It's not that savants are cleverer than the rest of us," says Snyder, "it's just that most of us go one step further in our brain processing--from detailed facts to meaningful concepts--and once we've done that we can't go back."
He cites, for example, a non-autistic student whose calculating skills rival those of the best mathematical savants. Electrical monitoring of the student's brain waves while he was doing a calculation showed that his brain was more active than usual at the start but less active just before he answered... "This student seems to be able to prevent (high-level conceptual thinking) from occurring when he is calculating--leaving him free to access the earlier low-level processes."
It may be that all very young children perceive the world in a savant-like way. One incredible skill shown by children is language acquisition...
Interesting article on David Lynch's latest film, along with an interview. (NYPress, via Robot Wisdom)
Tech journalist/ex-cyberfelon Kevin Poulsen deconstructs cyberterrorism. (ZDNet)
British company trademarks the colour orange, sues glazier over painting vans. (BBC News)
Palm, Psion marry their technologies to beat Microsoft. (BBC News)
This week's Parking Lot Is Full cartoon is a good one.