Children of the Sun > Rise of the Machines

I have no mouth, and I must scream: computers will kill us all.

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The world is fast becoming a Harlan Ellison or Philip K. Dick nightmare.

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What if you could collect all of the world's data into one place?

Seriously folks, even if you think that the number is 789.332 yottabyes on some given day--let's say today--the number is bigger tomorrow. And it gets bigger the next day. Even the rate of growth of the world's collective data is meaningless. Who would ever try to collect it all in one place and do something with it?

Oops. Someone actually is trying to collect all the data in the world and use it to peer into the future. Seriously. What's more, an organization called the European Commission is even willing to pump 1 billion euros into this dream.

The project is called the FutureICT Knowledge Accelerator and Crisis-Relief System, or FuturICT for short. FuturITC is building a Living Earth Platform. In the words of the FutureICT founders, the Living Earth Platform will be "a simulation, visualization, and participation platform to support decision making of policymakers, business people, and citizens."

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Funnily enough, David Icke wrote about this being an objective of the lizards some years ago.

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And, what exactly do the founders of FuturICT want to do? Again in their words: "The ultimate goal of the FuturICT flagship project is to understand and manage complex global, socially interactive systems, with a focus on sustainability and resilience."

Here's a practical example of what I think they're up to. Back in September, the journal "nature" reported a study that showed how applying data analytics to news stories over the last 10 years could have predicted the Arab Spring. It noted that the "tone" of news stories in Egypt, Libya, and Tunisia was trending progressively more negative in these countries where leaders are historically deposed by public uprisings.

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That's less Ellison/Dick and more Asimov.

It's leading up to an Ellison style story were computers take over the world, or a Dick story of computers controlling our future decisions.

This is very much Foundation:

Which, of course, Ellison (and Dick, much more blatantly) stole liberally from. But this (the catalog of all recorded knowledge) wasn't really part of their computer paranoia stuff.

I think those will be the first iBooks purchases on my iPad 2, when I get it.


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