Wednesday, September 19, 2012

So, if you're still thinking in Twentieth-Century Three Dimensional Terms, the following is going to be rather, um, bewildering to you.

The">Arecibo message
was transmitted in  1974 to the globular cluster M13. Did you really think it was going to take 25,000 years to get the reply? Kything quantum mechanically across the complete dimensions of the Milky Way Galaxy should be easy for any decent hypercivilization.
To quote Terrence McKenna (he is a little too loud for the authorscape of this blog):

"And the objects that they make have the peculiar ability to themselves generate this linguistic "stuff" which condenses as other objects. So beings are making objects, showing you objects, the objects are turning into beings and making other objects, these beings and objects, they jump into your chest - and then they jump back out. They jump into your body and disappear into your body, and then they jump back out, waving these things, just throwing this stuff in all directions. They are - the word that comes to mind is: they are Zany. It's like a Bugs Bunny cartoon, uh, gone mad. And all of this energy - they are elves. This is what elves are. It's this weird thing, where they love you - or they like you a lot, but you can tell that their sense of humor is Weird. And that you must be very careful of the deals you cut with these things, [...] in fact I've spent so much time trying to understand what this is. It has different kinds of feelings about it. One is (and this really threw me for a loop when I figured this out) after many many of these trips, and analyzing this place I kept going to, I finally realized: "this place is... somebody very weird... it's their idea of a reassuring environment for a human being! It's like a playpen. It's this warm. well lit, secure, womblike environment, and when I break into it they these things, the elves and the toys, are toys! These are things to amuse me. The way you would hang, uh, cubes and blocks above a cradle... a playpen, you know? Because children are supposed to coordinate shapes and bright colors. That's what these things are: they are toys to try and get me to coordinate my perception in this place. It's a holding area of some sort - someone's created this and is watching me."

Furthermore, we quote from David Keenan's masterpiece "To Dissect A Mockingbird"

It is a wonderfully bizarre fact that each song of a combinatory bird is not merely the name of another bird but is actually a complete description of the internal plumbing of that other bird. That is, each song is actually a brain map of some bird. Since a song is a complete description of how some bird will respond when it hears another bird, and the only important thing about a combinatory bird is how it responds when it hears another bird, we see that songs and singers are interchangeable. So we can say that the birds sing birds to each other, or we can equally say that what we have is a bunch of songs that sing songs to each other! Combinatory birds exist at an almost mystical level. Their language has no distinction between verbs and nouns. A description of action can equally well be a name. To emphasise this, in future we will call our diagrams song maps.

The popular Xzibit meme might well be as interpreted as the song that (whoever) is across from us on the cosmic ocean sung back at us. Not "build better hardware", but "get better at thinking about things".  Today we have laser etchers, three dimensional printers, the internet, transparent aluminum, portable cell phones because of the pioneering work of Alan Turing, Kurt Godel, Douglas Hofstadter, who all heard the response of the Arecibo message as it was veiled by the imaginations of our culture and effectively transcribed it into the lambda calculus, the basis for all computing languages.

Technical Credits:
Akamai Technologies for the technical set up for the highest bandwidth routing technology on the planet. The ARTFL Project at the University of Chicago for the most capable semantic analysis system currently available, philologic
The Arrhengterrapongorin Indigenous Higher Education Association for providing the expertise about responsible imagination.