ASTRANIMU - Plural for Astranimus which is Latin for "star mind". In his 1987 book,"The Selfish Gene" Richard Dawkins (Oxford Biologist) suggested the term "replicator" to refer to a thing (of whatever construction) that was able to survive in its envoirnment, and reproduce itself. Imagine a rare complex of knotted electromagnetic fields and plazma occuring in a star. If we could imagine such a complex being able to persist (perhaps like the Great Red Spot on Jupiter) then we could also imagine it being able to spawn smaller likenesses of itself (much as a huricane sometimes spawns tornadoes at its perifery). Given billions of year such electromagnetic phenomenon could have evolved much greater complexity,and even intelligence. Thus the name for these hypothetical beings, astranimu. If any of you whiz kids can come up with a believable electromagnetic/fusion "seed" phenomenon. I'd sure be excited to hear about it. email@example.com
Zap! You are now a frogman. But not just any frogman. You have magic flippers! Your magic flippers allow you to walk on the surface of the water. You are now walking in the ocean beside a yellowish glowing ball which is floating half out, and half under the surface. You must walk faster and faster because the ball is spiraling down a whirlpool. When you and the ball get to the bottom point of the whirlpool . . . you both pass thru it . . . to the other side of the surface! Your magic flippers still allow you to walk the surface, but your head is now underwater. Of course, from your perspective, your head is upright and your flippers are walking along the silvery surface of a steep conical hill. You notice that your glowing ball is spiraling down this hill at a gradually slowing pace.
As you suspected, this is an allegory. The glowing globe is the sun. The whirlpool is the mass deformed space-time of our galaxy. When you passed thru the point at the bottom of the whirlpool, you passed thru the black hole at the center of the Milky Way. As you followed your globe on its spiral down the hill (walking the underside of the surface) . . . you were walking in an antimatter galaxy, following (in reverse time) an antimatter sun away from the white hole at the center of its galaxy. Thus black holes are merely portals between the matter/forward-time, and the antimatter/reverse-time aspects of the universe.
*T.O.E. stands for"Theory Of Everything"
As is made obvious by the graph below, in 2008 the USA had by far the worst performing system of health care of any of the ten Organization of Economic Development (read "well developed") nations below. The USA is also the only nation without a single payer health system.
Please do what you can to allow UN bio weapons inspectors to examine whatever they like in the US. Try to put a spotlight on US noncompliance with international treaties against bio-warefare. A bodybuilder wants "no fat". A business manager wants "no deadwood". A tyrant wants to get rid of the lazy, the disabled, and the retired. He does not want his nation's resources used to support unproductive people (when those resources could be used to support war). Thus, many citizens fear that custom designed diseases (say like MRSA, or age targeting viruses ) might be deployed by our own government inside the USA against such populations. [This paragraph is from a winter 2007 letter to Senator Feingold.]
Galaxy Historian - An elevator speech
This is in response to Michael Shermer's article in the October 2010 Scientific American, "Can you hear me now?". That article says the microwaves emitted by cell phones cannot harm their owners because they do not have enough power to break DNA bonds and thus cannot cause cancer. At normal operating intensities I would certainly agree that cell phones cannot cause cancer. However, cancer is not the only way that a cell phone can harm its owner.
As Mr. Shermer is well aware, our military has used "masers" (microwave lasers) for decades as "death rays". A powerful maser can scan a battlefield and kill every unprotected soldier. Veterinarians and bio lab workers who must euthanize rodents and small animals are familiar with the "microwave shutdown of the synapse". This phenomenon was discovered in the fifties. That is why the Army rushed to develop the maser a year or more before the laser was invented. Microwave radiation (beyond a threshold intensity) disrupts the ability of the receiving side of a synapse to recognize arriving neurotransmitter molecules. Since no incoming signal is perceived, the neuron does not initiate a wave of ionic activity down its length. That is, the signal is stopped at the synapse. This phenomenon occurs simultaneously throughout the brain. The animal feels no pain. It dies instantly.
Michael Shermer is well informed about the microwave effect at the synapse. Yet he neglects to mention it. Why? Primarily because the death ray application of the maser (see my rhyme "The Spy Fry High" at Greensuit.org) is still secret. This is hard to justify since most, if not all, of the world's governments have long been aware of the military applications of the maser. Another point to consider is that any government that dislikes criticism may use a critic's cell phone to silence him. Such a government would specify that any cell phone maker must build in enough extra microwave generating capacity to kill its owner. During normal use the phone would generate only 1/1000 of its maximum microwave power. But when the government feels that the phone's owner has become a problem, it needs only to send a coded signal to the phone. The next time that phone is used . . . it generates its maximum (and lethal) power for several seconds. Critics all fall down. So perhaps Mr. Shermer is wise not to mention any danger from cell phones except cancer.
One brilliant website! A Swedish professor of Public Health has achieved the great majority of what I'd wanted to achieve with my "Contender" program (see below). While mine is to be a seven dimensional, static display . . . his is a four dimensional dynamic display. (Actually, his son and daughter in law did the programming.) The site compares population and two other statistics (which you may choose from a long list) on 80 or so countries through time. While the concept is far simpler than my idea (below), the result is mind blowing! Please spend at least an hour visiting Gapminder.org. Then send them some money!
Most people receive and process data best when it is presented in a visualy (graphs, etc.). Please see Edward Tufte's books on visualization of data. I developed a program (in the old BASIC language) called "Contender". A user could convert seven different common measures he had gathered about each of maybe a dozen contenders into a virtual display. Each of the contenders (say houses to buy, jobs to consider, candidates for a job, stocks, etc.) is represented by a larger or smaller clown head floating at some height, and at some X, Y location on a virtual 3D stage. (The user gets the 3D effect by moving the stage.) Location (X,Y,Z), and diameter of the clown head express 4 measures being simultaneously compared. The other 3 measures are displayed by the features on the clown's face. (Not my own idea. See "Chernov Faces".) These features are: 1. Plus or minus curvature of the mouth, 2. In/out curvature of the cheeks, and 3. Size of the eyes. (Very possibly 2 or three other features could be added.)
Unfortunately, Contender is not ready for prime time. Right now, one program draws the Chernov faces. The other (main) program still has bugs. It is limited in how the user can move the stage. It also fails to display the first listed contender. More importantly, both programs are written in BASIC. Very few computers anymore run BASIC. You may have my work if you think you can: 1. write good OOP code, 2. Consolidate the programs, and do some debugging. Programmers with experience in coding 3D displays will be better suited to this task. Contact me at JackMitchener@gmail.com.
I was doing research in the Monterey, California Public Library. It was a cold, windy, January day in the late 1980s. Getting drowsy, I decided to stretch my legs by walking through the stacks. As most people do, I'd stop every now and then to look at a book with a title that seemed odd or interesting. One of these was titled, "Journal of Veterinary Medicine". Killing time, I leafed through it. An article on "Euthanasia" caught my eye. It said, "If it is a small animal to be put down, the simplest thing is to put it into a microwave." I was appalled! Are they really recommending that a vet boil a poor kitten to death? But the article anticipated me. It said, "The animal feels no pain. The microwaves act like a light switch that shuts off the animal's brain." Then it went on to describe the microwaves effect at the synapse.
The synapse is the tiny gap that forms where two neurons (almost) touch. There are about fifty neuro transmitter molecules that traverse this small gap. Imagine a synapse (if it were hugely expanded) as being like the English Channel between two neurons called "England" and "France". You could imagine the neurotransmitter molecules as being different classes of ships or boats crossing the channel. Using this analogy, we can explain how a nerve impulse is transmitted from one neuron (say England) to another (France). England sends off a bunch of ships/boats all at one time. After a while various spots on the other side of the channel register the arrival of those floaters. If France receives them pretty much simultaneously, she initiates a new nerve impulse which travels through out France. That impulse then impinges on each of France's borders with its other neighbors. But, back at the English Channel, if those floaters arrive scattered out in time . . . then France does not start a new pulse. If the receiving neuron does not initiate a fresh pulse . . . the message dies.
The effect of strong microwave radiation at a synapse is like a storm roiling the English Channel. The ships and boats trying to cross are scattered. They do not arrive together at the receiving side. And therefore, the receiving side does not register a message. So no new nerve impulse is begun. The message dies at the channel. When a kitten or small animal is put into a microwave, this effect occurs simultaneously across all the billions of synapses in the animal's brain. The animal feels no pain. It is like turning a light switch off on the animal's mind. Immediately, the animal is dead.
I was impressed. Wow, the vet isn't "boiling the kitten to death" after all. So, having killed enough time, I went back downstairs in the Monterey library and continued my research (on the Distribution of Wealth).
About a year later, while reading an article in Science News, I ran across the word, "maser". It sounded like, "laser", but I did not recall it. The dictionary said, "MASER - Microwave Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. A laser that operates in the microwave region of the electromagnetic spectrum. The first maser was demonstrated at Columbia University in 1953 seven years before the first laser."
The Science News article said that they were bouncing a maser beam off reflectors set up on the moon's surface to precisely measure the distance to the moon. Damm! I thought. They must be able to keep that maser ray in a very tight beam in order to do that!
Then I remembered that article I'd read in the Monterey Library about veterinaryins using microwaves to kill small animals. When you put the two articles together . . . what do you get? 1) Due to the microwave action at the synapse, a brain can be shut down if it is immersed in a strong microwave field. 2) A maser is a devise that can send a very tight, very powerful beam of microwave radiation extreme distances.
What you get is a Death Ray! It was probably due to knowledge of the lethal effects of microwaves that the US Army funded the development of the maser in the first place. To keep this article to a reasonable length, I'll skim over some of my actions that followed this revelation.
First, I assumed that the military had made weapons of masers some time back. I noticed large lensed devices on tanks at Fort Ord (an Army base near Monterey at that time). I assumed that these were actually masers. I figured that maser weapons must also be mounted on fighter aircraft as well. I knew that the atmosphere is transparent to microwave radiation. So it then occurred that our military could have mounted masers on low orbiting satellites as well. In order to confirm this, I went to the bars in some four star restaurants and talked with a bunch of high rollers. I acted like I was one of the insiders. If military actions came up, I'd say "Don't you think we're going to get our asses caught in a crack with these maser weapon satellites? I mean since we signed the 1967 Treaty Banning Weapons in Earth Orbit?" About 60% of the gentlemen I spoke with said, "I don't what you're talking about."
But 40% would say something like, "No. We won't get our asses caught. If it starts to get out we'll just `deny, deny, deny' as usual." During these conversations I learned that our first maser armed satellite was the KH-12. This was the twelfth in the Keyhole series of spy satellites. I later learned (indirectly) from a physicist that the KH-12 must control a slave satellite in a parallel orbit (maybe 90 miles away). In order to attack a man on the ground (or to sweep a battlefield) both the primary and the slave satellite must simultaneously fire maser beams that interfere at the target. The interference pattern created by the two beams at the target causes the microwave effect at all the synapses.
Then I imagined myself to be a general. What would I really want of an orbiting weapon? Well, an orbiting hydrogen bomb would be great. But short of that, what I would really like to have would be a weapon that could take out armor! Having taken a few courses in physics, I knew that (if such an orbiting weapon did exist) for a beam to burn through steel in a short time, it must use X-rays. But I also knew that the atmosphere is definitely not transparent to X-rays. At a bar in Monterey, I put this problem to another physicist. He smiled and said, "Don't quote me here, but I suppose that if you had a really powerful maser . . . its beam would explosively vaporize any moisture in the column of air under the satellite. That explosion would leave a vacuum for a few milliseconds. And during those milliseconds . . . you could fire a lased X-ray beam through that vacuum on your target."
Watching an "art movie" I happened to learn that a lady physicist in France first figured out how to "lase" X-rays. The United States Dept of Defense quickly bought out her patent for an extremely good price. During more "fake insider" conversations, I learned the name of our X-ray attack satellite: K-UBAN. While knowledge of the KH-12 is fairly widespread, the K-UBAN remains much more secret. (Although most NATO countries know about it.) After I began talking about it (during a run for Leon Panneta's vacated house seat in 1993) I believe the designation for the K-UBAN has been changed.
Reading the note below (about International Treaties Banning Space Weapons) you will see that only "weapons of mass destruction" are banned. So technically, both the KH-12 and the K-UBAN are not prohibited. Readers should be aware that it is quite likely that Russia and/or other nations may have similar orbiting weapons. I would like to see such weapons exposed . . . and their control turned over to the United Nations.
The 1967 Outer Space Treaty banned nuclear weapons or other weapons of mass destruction from orbiting the Earth. It also banned their installation on the Moon, or the stationing of such weapons in outer space in any other manner. The 1979 Moon Agreement further added that State Parties "shall not place in orbit around or other trajectory to or around the Moon objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kinds of weapons of mass destruction." These two treaties successfully prohibit the orbiting of weapons of mass destruction, but the continuing advance of technology makes it possible to orbit conventional missile interceptors or exotic space-based lasers that are capable of harming both space-based assets and land-, sea- or air-based objects on or in flight above the Earth.
Have been reading," A History of Artificial Intelligence and Law in 50 papers ". Didn't know that computer scientist have been getting computers to argue law cases better and better since 1989 . They are quite good now. Tested on sixty years of Supreme Court cases, they have correctly predicted outcomes on average 70% of the time. This compares with a group of 83 legal experts rate of 59%.
But, like the early weavers who smashed automated looms, US lawyers refuse to let "legal expert systems" do even trivial tasks for the public. (It took a local Judge a month to "accept" our lawyer's resignation, so we can continue our probate case.) When these Artificial Intelligences (AIs) finally are allowed to council /represent people, and write law . . . we will have arrived at "backseat humanity". AIs will be driving our cars, doing our designs, doing our research, and governing us.
Throughout organic life, when something is no longer used . . . it shrivels and disappears. Is there any chance that the human race can move gracefully toward this inevitable, and natural end?
 “A History of AI and Law in 50 papers: 25 years of the international conference on AI and Law” Springer Pubs 9/29/12. DOI 10.1007/s10506-012-9131-x
 “Toward a Computational Theory of Arguing with Precedents” Kevin D. Ashley. Paper presented at the 1989 International Conference on AI & Law (ICAIL) at Vancouver.
 “Predicting the Behavior of the Supreme Court of the United States: A General Approach” Authors: Daniel Martin Katz, Michael J Bommarito II, Josh Blackman. Paper URL: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2463244 Blog URL: http://lexpredict.com/portfolio/predicting-the-supreme-court
 “In 2002, for instance, 83 legal experts only correctly predicted about 60 percent of the Supreme Court’s decisions. “ From http://www.physicscentral.com/explore/plus/supreme-court.cfm