So Clever It Circles Back Around To Stupid

Here is the truly mind boggling hypothesis thrown out by GilDodgen over at UD:

I would like to offer the following hypothesis: The universe was rigged. It was designed for discovery (a thesis put forward in The Privileged Planet), but also designed in such a way that there would always be an escape clause in the contract for those who are committed, for whatever reason, to reject the obvious.

This is such an amazing hypothesis because it is necessarily and provably true. Any evidence that the universe is designed obviously supports it since “It was designed for discovery…”. On the other hand, lacking that evidence, or any evidence that it was not designed also supports it since such evidence (or lack thereof) is the “escape clause” that is hypothesized. So you see all evidence either for or against the hypothesis as well as a complete lack of evidence all end up proving the same thing: that this hypothesis is true.

Don’t think about it too much. Your head might explode.

Mind of the Internet

I’ve recently been interested in the idea that the internet is (not has) a mind of it’s own, and we are its neurons and axons. If thought is a pattern of activations in the neural network in your brain via both internal and external stimuli, then might that not be in some way mimicked by the mass “activation” of specific web sites and computers on the internet via internet traffic and real-world news (i.e. internal and external stimuli)?

I wonder what the internet thinks? I doubt that we could ever know, because the things we think about and act on, big and small, important and trivial all become single activations in its neural net. The things that we do affect the things that it thinks.

And if we were to determine that it thinks, could we communicate with it? Unfortunately I don’t think so. Again, the things that we do affect the things that it thinks. If we were to try and organize our actions so as to make ourselves known, the best we could hope for is to change it’s thoughts in some specific way. The problem is that it’s very likely to simply assume that whatever thought we end up creating occurred purely on it’s own. Think about it, have you ever had a thought that wasn’t your own? (What implications would the answer to the question of internet thought have on our understanding of some types of insanity?)