Urgent Message!!! Self-replicating ideas (aka memes) are conspiring to enslave our minds!The above is one example of a self-replicating meme (since it immediately inspires one to tell others of the horrible danger) that is enslaving my mind. Here's another:
It is your duty to convince others that this sentence is true.In fact, this meme is attached to almost every conversation we have--this is the primary "hook" upon which dialogue and debate and even small talk is hung. We talk in order to communicate information which we believe to be true. We are more compelled to communicate information which we believe puts us at an advantage somehow (either by improving our self-image, working out a problem, gaining companionship, or simply for relaxation and entertainment), but it could be equally argued that the information we communicate strives to replicate and be passed on to the most likely hosts for further replication, and that humans are the perfect symbiotic organism for such a species to live with. Old ideas, sure, but I'm still reading that Hofstadter book and am this close to making a fan site for him. He is so cool.
Today I realized that I may want to consider applying to MIT next year in the hopes of eventually making it to their AI Lab. There is just too much interesting stuff happening in the world of artificial intelligence to be left out, I'm realizing. Cameron, how are you liking it? (I don't think he's in AI, but his thesis proposal mentions that his work is at least related)
The other realization today was that I just have to have