Archive for January, 2014

HumTech2014 will provide a forum for scientists, engineers, technologists, field workers and policymakers to discuss current research and exchange technical ideas that have a global humanitarian impact.

via Humanitarian Technology: Science, Systems and Global Impact 2014 | 13 – 15 May 2014 | Boston MA.

“Being Bigger on the Inside is not just limited to architecture such as buildings and other physical structures. Within media it can also apply to living creatures with incredibly spacious internal anatomy that characters who enter it eventually discover. Usually if terrestrial in origin, and not otherworldly or supernatural, then Artistic License – Biology has been employed. If extraterrestrial, then its simply a case of Bizarre Alien Biology at work.”

via Main/Bigger on the Inside – Television Tropes & Idioms.

//I’ve been trying to draw a Venn Diagram showing the differences between the representationalist, materialist scientific view of an objective reality independent of our investigations, and the Buddhist perspective.

The Buddhist view has the world of experience containing everything we sense, perceive, think, feel – including the so-called external world, since it is also perceived through our senses and thoughts. If you think of the mind as in, or dependent on, the brain (a limited view, but common), then our world of experience includes everything: there is no outside.

So, seeing the brain, it seems to be true – it is bigger on the inside. :?)



New evidence that plants get their energy using quantum entanglement.

complete article:

via New evidence that plants get their energy using quantum entanglement.

“Advancing the debate on quantum effects in light-initiated reactions in biology requires clear identification of non-classical features that these processes can exhibit and utilize. Here we show that in prototype dimers present in a variety of photosynthetic antennae, efficient vibration-assisted energy transfer in the sub-picosecond timescale and at room temperature can manifest and benefit from non-classical fluctuations of collective pigment motions. Non-classicality of initially thermalized vibrations is induced via coherent exciton–vibration interactions and is unambiguously indicated by negativities in the phase–space quasi-probability distribution of the effective collective mode coupled to the electronic dynamics. These quantum effects can be prompted upon incoherent input of excitation. Our results therefore suggest that investigation of the non-classical properties of vibrational motions assisting excitation and charge transport, photoreception and chemical sensing processes could be a touchstone for revealing a role for non-trivial quantum phenomena in biology.”

  • Bridging the “Two Cultures”: Merleau-Ponty and the Crisis in Modern PhysicsGraduate studies at Western Steven M. RosenCosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy 9 2:1-12 2013Abstract This paper brings to light the significance of Merleau-Ponty’s thinking for contemporary physics. The point of departure is his 1956–57 Collège de France lectures on Nature, coupled with his reflections on the crisis in modern physics appearing in THE VISIBLE AND THE INVISIBLE. Developments in theoretical physics after his death are then explored and a deepening of the crisis is disclosed. The upshot is that physics’ intractable problems of uncertainty and subject-object interaction can only be addressed by shifting its philosophical base from objectivism to phenomenology, as Merleau-Ponty suggested. Merleau-Ponty’s allusion to “topological space” in THE VISIBLE AND THE INVISIBLE provides a clue for bridging the gap between “hard science” and “soft philosophy.” This lead is pursued in the present paper by employing the paradoxical topology of the Klein bottle. The hope is that, by “softening” physics and “hardening” phenomenology, the “two cultures” cf. C. P. Snow can be wed and a new kind of science be born.”

via Steven M. Rosen, Bridging the “Two Cultures”: Merleau-Ponty and the Crisis in Modern Physics – PhilPapers.