Jump to content


Senior Members
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Prometheus last won the day on July 31

Prometheus had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

490 Beacon of Hope


About Prometheus

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Interests
    Building statistical models for Raman spectroscopy.

Recent Profile Visitors

18570 profile views
  1. Hmm... Which is most useful when talking about environmental impact? I'd have thought power as it takes into account time spent performing operations, which is what you seem to suggest. I guess then the question is a practical one of whether QCs become common enough to have a significant environmental impact. The applications i've seen involve computational chemistry and similar modelling - not exactly for the masses. But could we have apps accessing cloud quantum computing for some of its processing? Could they, for instance, be used for encryption on a messaging app, requiring banks of QCs? I just came across this paper which was cited on several sites to suggest QCs will reduce power consumption. However, the paper is above me so i'm not sure that's what it actually says.
  2. Apparently by 2030 21% of electricity demand will come from computers, a significant contribution to energy consumption. My understanding of quantum computers is that because they run at near absolute zero, there is negligible electrical resistance, making them exceptionally energy efficient. However, to achieve these temperatures must require a significant amount of energy. Overall would a quantum computing be more energy efficient than traditional computing?
  3. I recently discovered that the Catholic and the Protestant Bible are slightly different, the Catholic version having a few extra books in the Old Testament.
  4. Being a human construct does not make things somehow less real. Things like justice and mercy exist: they are not flesh and blood although they are emergent from it. Why is 'subjective' purpose often thought inferior to 'objective' purpose? Like being given meaning is somehow better than creating meaning. Memetics probably plays a larger role now than genetics. Why does being a temporary phenomena make it less real? Even atoms have finite lifetimes - so they aren't real either. What are you talking about? Just because you have a favourite definition of the word spirituality, doesn't make it the 'right' one. I agree it can lead to confusion so it's worth stating which one your following, but to discarding all other meanings as wrong is just plain silly. Like one word can't have more than one meaning. It's like not believing in atoms, because the root Greek word means indivisible and atoms can be split. Doesn't work, does it?
  5. You wouldn't just drive a Ferrari in VR. You could be a Ferrari, driving through space faster than the speed of light, dodging supernova for fun. To the OP: there will always be people who would rather stay in the physical world. Many of them i would imagine.
  6. Isn't it more a case of biological evolution being outpaced by memetic evolution?
  7. There were quite a few alternatives, some of them predating Christianity. Anaximander proposed that all life began in the sea and that man was an adaptation of animals. The view of eternal creation and collapse is found in certain Hindu and Buddhist cosmologies - which is why the big bang/big crunch idea appeals to them. Even the primordial ideas that creation somehow emanated from chaos could indicate that people were comfortable saying 'don't know'.The idea that 'God did it' is the default view of humanity is only true of a limited time and location in our history. It's an unfortunately stubborn meme though.
  8. I would speculate that developments like the theory of evolution and the big bang model made credible the claim Laplace's statement on god(s): I have no need for that hypothesis. It takes time for scientific ideas to percolate through society, hence the time lag. The rest is just letting people think about for themselves with these ideas in mind.
  9. Just to emphasise this point: the probability of exactly half is close to zero, even though the expectation is 500000000 (which is half heads). With so many possible outcomes the probability of even the most likely outcome has only a tiny chance of occuring, as you can see from the PMF of 90000 flips below. Which is what you're seeing, Conjurer, as you perform more trials, the probability of getting exactly half heads is always decreasing, though it always remains the most likely of all possible outcomes. That should be clear on the other graph which is just zoomed in around the expected value.
  10. I don't understand the question. You want to be able to stop breathing before death so as to ease some anxieties when dying?
  11. This is correct. Not entirely sure what you mean. I generated a fewf binomial probability mass functions, with odd or even numbers of trials. With an even number of trials the most likely outcome is an odd number, while for an odd number of trials the most likely outcome is equal between an odd and an even number. We will expect an even number of heads or tails every time we have an odd number of flips. This is a consequence of the combinatorics of the binomial PMF (the n choose k bit). Does this answer your question?
  12. I used to ask this question when i was a nurse and got all kinds of answers. Viruses prefer the colder temperatures in noses during winter; immune systems weaken during winter months as part of annual biorhythms; people seal themselves off from the outside world more to stay warm (similar to the huddle together one). Some mix of all the above. I never did find a definitive answer.
  13. The 9/11 terrorists were motivated by Wahhabism, sponsored by a Saudi Royal family simply wanting to maintain rule. Had the population not been amenable to religious manipulation the ruling class would have leveraged some other aspect of the human condition to their end. Simply blaming religion is not useful. We can't quantify whether religion has provided a net harm or benefit. How are you going to quantify those feelings of security or wellness some religious people experience? How do you count 'religious' war deaths that would have probably happened without religion anyway, as one culture sought to subjugate another culture? How do you count the silent suffering from paedo priests? I think it much more helpful to look at religion as a meme. It is easy to see why aggression could help some religious memeplexes spread, in the same way it is easy to see why aggression could help a species spread (i'm picturing honey badgers right now). The question should be how do we select for traits that are less aggressive.
  14. That's exactly what i was looking for, thanks.
  15. I don't think this one is a necessary property: through meditation, certain psychedelics, certain dream states or engaging in certain activities (some say dancing or sports), it is possible to exist without a sense of self and still be conscious. Certainly a different kind of consciousness, but still consciousness. However, i can imagine a sense of self being an important evolved trait that allowed sufficiently complex beings to exist to facilitate human consciousness.
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.