TED (5)

David Chalmers disappointing speech addressed the issues of consciousness and the neurosciences. He said, the latter is a science of correlations. Doesn't address the hard problem of why all this mechanical processing and identifying locations of brain activity how consciousness happens and why. The objective functioning of the human brain does not reveal the hard problem of how all of this leads to consciousness. Subjective experiences are not explained by looking at the functioning of the brain. "Consciousness is now an anomaly." Inner subjective movie can be explained by a reductive approach but it is not good enough. Little of what he said is really relevant to contemporary research.  

Consciousness is fundamental, a set of properties that are basic to the way the brain functions. Postulate consciousness as a fundamental set of processes at the heart of everything. Consciousness might be universal. Every system may have some degree of consciousness. 

If this is the product of thirty years of research, then the presentation was disappointing. 

TED Vancouver 2014 (2)

Just attended a workshop on Google Glass. The challenges of a new medium were clearly present. Filmmakers Hannah Roodman and Ben Milstein described the process of shooting a documentary film about the relationship between Hasidic Jews and Caribbeans in the Crown Heights area of New York. Their question was, "what story could Glass help you tell?" The position of the camera above the eye provides a first person view of events and people. It was not clear whether there really was a difference with traditional modes of camera use and the Glass as a technology. Movements were rapid and often from angles that would otherwise have been difficult. But, it was hard to tell if we were looking at a new medium or an old one. More time will be needed to understand this and see whether a shift is really taking place.