Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Bug resurrected after 120,000 years: Scientific American:
"The tiny purple microbe, dubbed Herminiimonas glaciei, lay trapped beneath nearly two miles of ice in Greenland. It took 11 months to revive it by gently warming it in an incubator. Finally the bug sprang back to life and began producing fresh colonies of purple brown bacteria."

You just KNOW some idiot is going to leave a petri dish uncovered some night and BAM it's out the door! This could be the Mastodon Flu bug or God know's what else.

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Can a machine change your mind? | open Democracy News Analysis:
"...what it feels like to be conscious of something, or to be in a particular state of pain or serenity, surely goes beyond those brain properties. A scientific description of what happens in the brain when someone has a certain thought or experience seems inevitably to leave out what the thought is about or the experience is like. Once again, there’s something left over, something which, if the person were observing their own brain states, they would be having in addition to seeing neurons fire and synapses wiggling."

ALL thoughts you have in your "mind" have a physical, material basis. To me, that is undeniable. Right now, our ability to explain and identify that physical basis is incomplete. We are getting there and I believe shall get there eventually, inevitably. No, I don't think consciousness is simply synapses wiggling. I think your entire body participates in consciousness. But it is a physical, material phenomenon nonetheless.