The case for creating a United States Space Force is compelling. The United States military’s ability to wage war has become increasingly reliant on satellites. Navigation, reconnaissance, and communications are all handled by space assets. The world economy has become dependent on space satellites. The Internet consists of servers throughout the world linked by satellite constellations. Knock out those satellites and commercial companies’ ability to do business becomes seriously compromised. The space version of Pearl Harbor could reduce the United States to developing-world status in a single blow.
China and Russia, the main enemies of the United States in a potential conflict, are busily developing weapons systems to destroy America’s space infrastructure. Indeed, remote jamming may well do the job without resorting to a direct strike. The potential for jamming is a reason why Pence mentioned the development of jam-proof satellites in his speech. In all, Pence proposed an investment of $8 billion in new space systems during the next five years. The money is likely to be just a down payment for creating a new military branch that would achieve President Trump’s dream of achieving American space dominance.
The idea of a United States Space Force brings science fiction visions of American military personnel doing battle against an enemy in space. Indeed, the joke that has become common on social media is that President Trump is proposing to create nothing less than Star Fleet, the organization made famous in the Star Trek franchise of movies and TV shows.
According to MIT professor Seth Lloyd, the answer is yes. We could be living in the kind of digital world depicted in The Matrix, and not even know it.
A researcher in Mechanical Engineering at MIT, Lloyd is one of the leaders in the field of quantuminformation. He’s been with the field from its very conception to its sky-rocketing rise to popularity. Decades ago, the feasibility of developing quantum computing devices was challenged. Now, as quantum computation is producing actual technologies, we are only left to wonder—what kind of applications will it provide us with next?
But, first things first. In a round-table discussion with undergraduates, Lloyd speaks of his early days in the field with a touch of humor, irony, and most surprisingly—pride. When he just started to research quantuminformation in graduate school, most scientists told him to look into other areas. In fact, out of the postdoctoral programs he considered, not many were too invested in researching of information in quantum mechanics. Most universities and institutes were reluctant to take up quantum computing, but Murray Gell-Mann accepted Lloyd for a position at the California Institute of Technology. This is where many ideas behind quantum computation were born, and Lloyd is “excited by the popularity of the field today.”
The other gaming was that computers don’t really understand words… So you ask, “Who was the sixteenth president of the United States.”? The computer doesn’t know what “sixteenth” and “president of the United States” mean. But it can go and rummage through Wikipedia-like sources and find those words and match them to a president, Abraham Lincoln and come back with “‘Who’ was Abraham Lincoln.”
But then you put anything in that’s like a pun or a joke or a riddle or sarcasm, that you can’t look up in Wikipedia, and computers are helpless. For example, in the first round, one of the final Jeopardy clues was, “Its largest airport is named for a World War II hero; its second largest for a World War II battle.” And the correct answer was “Chicago.” And Watson guessed “Toronto,” apparently because it was confused in the second part of that sentence, what “it” referred to. And that is a common problem with computers. (See: Why did Watson think Toronto was in the U.S.A.?)
Terry Winograd is a computer scientist at Stanford and he thought up this test of computer knowledge. The question is, “What does ‘it’ refer to in this sentence?”
For now, the phrase “Get out of my head,” is a lighthearted joke uttered when someone shares the same thought as a friend or colleague. But thanks to research in telepathic communications and computer technology by a team from the University of Washington, it could become a literal directive in the future.
Or, perhaps you’ll want to invite someone into your mind to help you solve a tricky problem. After all, two (or three) heads are better than one.
A Facebook event called “Storm Area 51, They Can’t Stop All of Us” has amassed an army of memers, schemers and tinfoil hat-wearing conspirators to raid the top-secret Air Force military base in the middle of Nevada’s desert.
Over 289,000 users confirmed they’re planning to come along, while 314,000 are “interested.” It’s gotten so big that the event is grabbing the attention of local and even international media.
Needless to say, the event itself is a joke, hosted by a Facebook group called “Shitposting cause im [sic] in shambles” made up of some 20,000 meme-loving netizens. The group classifies itself as a “religious organization” on the platform.
An all-star panel of experts in nutritional studies with an emphasis on longevity. At some point in your life, you have heard the following. “Eat the right food. It will help you live longer.” What if I told you the right food could help you heal as well. This panel of longevity driven nutritionist will give you a broad range of fact-based regiments and compelling individual opinions on Nutrition and longevity. This segment will cover many diverse understandable methods that can make a change in longevity for you or your loved ones. Fill yourself with the knowledge of proper nutrition for longevity.
Speakers Will Include: Brian Clement – Plant-Based & founder of “Hippocrates Health Institute” A typical American growing up in the New Jersey/New York area, Brian likes to joke that he was a pioneer in the field of obesity—he was fat even before many Americans were fat! Raised in an Irish household on the standard American diet of meat, processed foods, and sugary sodas, he was unfit and gasping for air every few steps. When he was 20 years old, he was dating a girl whose best friend’s boyfriend was 30—and a vegetarian. Despite the fact he had been more or less educated by his family that the body would die without animal-based foods, the lure of an influential peer inspired him to give up meat in one fell swoop. For the first year and a half, he kept his vegetarian diet a secret from his family. Yet after losing 120 pounds and experiencing the difference in his health, he came out of the proverbial closet (much to his family’s dismay!) and became a complete vegan three years later.
Wendi Blum – Founder of “Founder of Create Your Best Life” Wendi Blum worked in the pharmaceutical industry for over 20 years until (at age 45) felt a calling to completely change every aspect of her life. After two decades in a successful sales career (having worked for Zenecca Pharmaceuticals, PDI and Bristol Myers Squibb, wearing many different hats including advocacy, sales, and training) Wendi decided to re-write the story of her life literally and become an international inspirational speaker, author, workshop leader, success coach, and life-shift retreat guru. She is the author of 5 books – known for her focus on reinvention, goal mastery, and business savvy – she is known as “the queen of reinvention” Her titles include: “Your Life, Your Destiny, Uncover Yours, LifeShift” and “Goals Setting Workbook: Success Strategies for The New Economy” – and many more. Blum is known for her blend of Spiritual flare with business savvy” because of how she merges these two powerful components together.
Bill Faloon — Director and Co-founder of the “Life Extension Foundation”.
Bill Faloon compiled the 1,500-page medical reference book Disease Prevention and Treatment, and his latest book is Pharmocracy: How Corrupt Deals and Misguided Medical Regulations Are Bankrupting America—and What to Do About It. He is also director and co-founder of the Life Extension Foundation, a consumer advocacy organization that funds research and disseminates information to consumers about optimal health. Mr. Faloon has made hundreds of media appearances, including guest spots on The Phil Donohue Show, Tony Brown’s Journal, and ABC News Day One, and has been interviewed Newsweek and other magazines.
Bye Bye Camera is an iOS app built for the “post-human world,” says Damjanski, a mononymous artist based in New York City who helped create the software. Why post-human? Because it uses AI to remove people from images and paint over their absence.
“One joke we always make about it is: ‘finally, you can take a selfie without yourself,’” Damjanski tells The Verge.
The app costs $2.99 from the App Store, and, fair warning here, it’s not very good — or at least, it’s not flawless. The app is slow and removes people with a great deal of mess, leaving behind a smear of pixels like an AI hit man sending a message. If you’re looking to edit out political opponents from your Instagram, you’d be better off using Photoshop. But if you want to mess around with machine learning magic, Bye Bye Camera is good fun.
Turns out that last one was a CGI joke but this one isn’t. Facebook wouldn’t let me delete the post.
Recently, I picked up Kai-Fu Lee’s newest book, AI Superpowers.
Kai-Fu Lee is one of the most plugged-in AI investors on the planet, heading management of over $2 billion AUM between six funds, and over 300 portfolio companies in the U.S. and China.
Drawing from his pioneering work in AI, executive leadership at Microsoft, Apple and Google (where he served as founding president of Google China), and his founding of VC fund Sinovation Ventures, Lee shares invaluable insights about: