IEET > Contributors > HealthLongevity > Kris Notaro > Innovation
What Will it be Like to Multitask to Reach Truth?
Kris Notaro   Sep 21, 2012   Ethical Technology  

What will it be like to multitask in a transhuman world? Will we find truth within information faster and easier?

I currently work on a computer that uses Ubuntu as the operating system, Gnome Fallback as the desktop, and Compiz as the “Window Manager”. I also have a graphics card that supports two monitors. With Compiz activated that means I get 8 desktops (or more if I wanted) to multitask. While I chat with people, have conversations, or arguments, the multi monitor, multi desktop setup allows me to switch back and forth from any website I want, especially the all-powerful Google, to find organized information on the flash.

While this is not a “brain-to-computer-interface” it is an example of what I would call “nearly information overload.” But, it is not information overload for it is very manageable. With two screens and organized information one can find almost any data they are looking for. The organized data spread along 8 desktops allows one to read, edit, and come to sound conclusions.

With all this Open-Source software there is the added plus of the free Oracle VM Virtualbox which allows me to have Windowz on another screen in case I need it for Adobe photoshop, illustrator, dreamweaver, or publisher (which all files created in each can be edited, minus publisher in Ubuntu).

With information so accessible it is hard to lose an argument. It’s also showing me what it might be like for brain-to-computer-interfaces that will allow future minds to Wifi any information on the fly. Most of my friends use websites like wikipedia if they need information instantly on their Smart Phones, nothing new, well nothing new if you consider the past 5 years as nothing new.

So while I work on my two 23 inch monitors, with 8 desktops I get a feel that it is something more powerful than the Smart Phone. I can, for example, compare conservapedia.com and gop.com to wikipedia, facebook, urbandictionary.com, peer review journals, and books in seconds.

Brain-to-computer-interfaces in a transhuman world will allow the same thing I assume. It is then up to several things to take place. Peer review journals must become free, and books online should also become free.

If a book like The Moral Landscape: How Science Can Determine Human Values by Sam Harris, all the works of Marx, and Chomsky, etc are available to the future mind (Where Marx and Chomsky is pretty much already online), organized multitasking should lead the critical thinking brain/mind to the “right”, “correct”, semi-paradigmatic answer.

Kris Notaro, a former IEET intern, served as the IEET's Managing Director from 2012 through 2015. He is currently an IEET Program Director. He earned his BS in Philosophy from Charter Oak State College in Connecticut. He is currently the Bertrand Russell Society’s Vice-President for Website Technology. He has worked with the Bertrand Russell A/V Project at Central Connecticut State University, producing multimedia materials related to philosophy and ethics for classroom use. His major passions are in the technological advances in the areas of neuroscience, consciousness, brain, and mind.



COMMENTS

Ubuntu is one of the many distributions of the GNU+Linux system.  I
launched the development of the GNU system in 1984 for the sake of
freedom: so users could have control of their own computing.
That is what “free software” refers to.

To some extent, you now have such control.  But not entirely.  Ubuntu
is one of the GNU/Linux distros that install and/or offer nonfree
software.  You also have Windows and other nonfree programs installed.
These programs are controlled by a company, not by their users.  Alas,
the use of the term “open source” as a substitute for “free software”
leads attention away from these ethical issues, which is a major
disadvantage.

If you someday transfer your implementation into a computer, I
recommend you avoid allowing any nonfree (user-subjugating) software
into your digitized brain.

See http://www.gnu.org/gnu/the-gnu-project.html and
http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/open-source-misses-the-point.html.

I have to one, thank you for commenting on my article, as short as it is, and two, I agree with your Free Software thesis above all other software “licenses”. I have listened to your lectures and have read your online works. You have more respect from me then you know!

I understand your disappointment in me using Ubuntu with VirtualBox and Wine to run a little bit of Windowz software.(Which I only do for netflix, helping people troubleshoot windows, and once in a while photoshop, but I use Gimp most of the time)

It is a shame that Ubuntu began the use of non-free software, kind of like that of the Apple based “buy an “app” if you want to do such and such” mentality. However I never spent a penny on Ubuntu or on the software that it supports in the Linux environment. Ubuntu also promised to keep their operating system up to date and free (even though Precise Desktop is just ridiculousness, hence Gnome Fallback)

I currently use many different forms of Debian Linux for troubleshooting computers. I have used Debian Linux as my main OS for a period of time and enjoyed it very much. So thank you and the programmers very much for all the hard work you put into this amazing OS.

Mind uploading and digitizing brains seems far away in the future, and before we do it we will need a comprehensive science of consciousness and a clear understanding of the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC) etc. With all my hope I want this science and philosophy to be done without the use of animal testing and to be geared towards the use of simulations on computers, with ALL its data released to the public.

If we do succeed in “mind uploading” or digitizing brains I totally agree with you that it should be based on free software that is accountable to a community like that of Chomskyan libertarian socialism, anarcho-syndicalism, cross-border solidarity and the IEET’s technoprogressivism. An open direct-democracy type of accountability would be ideal. I would not trust a modern capitalist corporation which is designed to make profits with my own personal consciousness, identity, and self.

I will consider switching over to Debian Linux as my main operating system:
http://www.debian.org/

Anyone who is curious about the GNU license please go to:
http://www.gnu.org/licenses/gpl.html

Anyone who is interested in the Free Software Foundation please see:
http://www.fsf.org/

Anyone who is interested in the FSF recommended Linux distributions please go to:
http://www.gnu.org/distros/free-distros.html

If you want a FSF sponsored truly free software platform (GNU/Ubuntu-based/Linux) go to:
http://www.gnewsense.org/

Correction: “Precise Desktop is just ridiculousness” = Unity Desktop is just ridiculous - no offense to the Ubuntu Unity Desktop developers, but I personally find that Ubuntu+Gnome+Compiz = unbelievable productivity.

Gnome 3 comes with “gnome classic” so if you have a linux distro that can install Gnome 3 your all set, thats if your a Gnome classic fan!

http://www.gnome.org/gnome-3/

YOUR COMMENT Login or Register to post a comment.

Next entry: St. William at the Pearly Gates (Science Fiction)

Previous entry: Milton Friedman’s Birthday