Shiny Things 20/ everything is probably probabilistic
things are heating up
As always, thanks for reading.
Idea: 3D Scene Perception via Probabilistic Programming (3DP3) and the various attempts to bring system 1 and system 2 thinking to AI. At a super basic level, its the attempt to ask the question “how do you create AI that doesn’t choke on boundless data?”, but then you end up in “how do you encode ethics?”.
Book: Underbugs — a nearly psychedelic journey through the world of termites and the humans who are obsessed with them. some parts of this book ask the question “is the hive, not the mite, the fundamental entity of existence?” Other parts connect distributed decisionmaking by hives to Edge computing. Also every character in the book is weirder than your weirdest friend, mostly in a good way.
Podcast: Ologies, by Alie Ward: the “Airport full of Neuroscientists” was the initial episode that made me subscribe, and the Mycology episode from the archives. But oh it gets wild - Dark Matter, Moss.
Other Shiny bits, this week all variations on the key of Heat:
That humid air → electricity discovery from a previous issue? it was a happy accident. Confused? I was too, but it’s called Hygroelectricity, and this site has an awesome explainer video (via slashdot).