Blabberbox:Random blog-like posts by pftq and his related selves.Share on Twitter

A Way to Know If We're in a Simulation

January 6th, 2017 | Posted by pftq in Ideas | #
This is inspired by a dream I had that was mildly unsettling.  In the dream, you were in a house with a few old-school moving pictures on the wall - the kind that required a handcrank to animate except the owner found a way to keep the pictures moving on their own for a long time, to the point the owner had long passed away and the pictures were still moving.  Over time, the mechanical devices keeping the pictures moving start to wear out, and the pictures start to slow down.  What becomes odd is that if you look closely enough, you start to notice that every so often, a frame goes missing or blacks out, as if the universe flickered and the camera captured a moment of nothingness.

Of course, that dream could have been a lot of other things, such as mechanical issues with the camera that shot the footage, but what it got me wondering was, if the universe was a simulation with a frame rate, whether we could capture the flickers in between the frames to prove it.  This...[More]
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Fast Radio Bursts Pinpointed

January 4th, 2017 | Posted by pftq in Blabberbox | #
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World Without Senses

January 3rd, 2017 | Posted by pftq in Ideas | #
Imagine having no sight, no hearing, no senses. The world exists but you wouldn't know it. Your body depends on this place outside your reality, but you aren't even aware of having a body, of its actions from your thoughts, of others who see you and perhaps try to interact with you. God probably thinks we're in a coma.
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New Year's Day on NYC Rooftop

January 1st, 2017 | Posted by pftq in Blabberbox | #
I only just now realized I have a rooftop in NYC. What terrible timing...


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Narcissism is Not Self Expression

December 22nd, 2016 | Posted by pftq in Thought of the Day | #
Narcissism is not self expression. One shapes the world in their image; the other just wants their image to be seen.
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The Average is Not Real

December 4th, 2016 | Posted by pftq in Thought of the Day | #
The average is not a real number. If one fish is fresh water and the other salt, optimizing for the average kills both.
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Let Me Tell You a Story

November 27th, 2016 | Posted by pftq in Stuck in My Head | #
Let Me Tell You a Story by Blake Robinson
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Three Tiers of Mind

November 11th, 2016 | Posted by pftq in Society | #
This is a long piece but one I've been thinking through for a long time.  I've come gradually to see people as being in one of three Tiers when it comes to their motivations, mindset, and ability to make things happen.  Before I begin, I want to make clear that this is not the case of one group of people being better than another.  It is also not a relative scale or spectrum; the conditions for each group are explicit, discrete, and absolute, based solely on whether the person does or does not direct not only his own fate but that of others.  There is no in-between.  Lastly, it is important to understand that these are mindsets, not people.  It has nothing to do with social status, quality of character, or things like open-mindedness, political leaning, etc.  For sake of discussion, we will assume everyone is well-intentioned, honest, and overall good people.  This topic can be easily misconstrued as judgmental or arrogant, but it’s important...[More]
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