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June 22, 2011


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For whatever reason, humans feel the need to (seemingly) justify their beliefs by finding agreement from others. And in our current society, the best "other" you can find is science.

Combine that with our ability to use, well, almost ANYTHING to support our beliefs... and you get people touting that "Science" proves whatever they happen to want proved.

Sadly, just because someone is a scientist, that doesn't mean they aren't subject to glaring bouts of irrationality.

Add *that* to the mix and you get the double whammy of having scientists publicly agree with your unprovable (and sometimes unfalsifiable position).

Now you've made the hop, skip, and a jump to psychic yogurt, and non-random random number generators (and people, scientists included, who don't understand the multi-layered contradiction in that phrase).

Steven, I'm not sure what contradiction you're talking about. There's a difference between a series of random and non-random numbers. The Global Consciousness Project claims to have found non-random numbers being generated by a device programmed to produce random numbers.

If this were the case, some outside influence (human consciousness?) is posited to influence the random number generator. I don't see any contradiction here. Just questionable assertions about what the results mean.

As to the psychic yogurt, I don't believe in what the movie showed. In Ebert's review, he also expresses extreme skepticism about the electrodes-in-yogurt pseudo-experiment. But I'm sure lots of people do believe that yogurt can perceive human thoughts. (Because lots of people believe all kinds of strange stuff.)

I would hasten to remind all and sundry that "numbers" do not exist, except conceptually in human consciousness.
And yogurt? It's just annoyed that it will be transformed into fecal matter.


Maybe oxymoron would have been a better word.

And I use either oxymoron or contradiction because from my looking at the data, the idea that a genuine random number generator has gone temporarily rogue isn't supported.

BTW, it's really hard to make a good random number generator... and the better it is, the harder it is to determine if it's not generating truly random sequences.

Imagine, if you will, a generator that only returns 1 or 0 each time it runs. Getting 1,000,000 0s in a row does not mean that it's not working. Unlikely as it may be to get that result, it's still statistically valid as a random result. Same with 10101010101 (ad infinitum), or anything else that *looks* like a pattern.


While random numbers are typically generated by algorithms, the first sentence on the Princeton hosted webpage explains that hardware RNGs are used and also says theirs happen to be based on quantum tunneling effects, whatever that means.

I'm still wondering what's happening with the yogurt but being hosted by Princeton does lend the project legitimacy and gives Tom some leeway to be excited, whether or not "collective consciousness" is something that should excite or not.

What's wrong with acting human, being nice, helping one another is that OTHER does not always stand for a person who will have the same view of you. In fact, OTHER can be a very evil and misguided (even lied too) being. No mater how nice you are, or how much you give, this OTHER stands for nothing other-than selfishness gain, wealth and power. And there are entities with these exact mentalities today (though backed by theories that allow for them to not see them selves as the evil ones). And because these "entities" have different standards and agendas than most people (normal, caring, loving people), they have been able to gain great wealth and power which in turn aids them an ability to spread their own views to others, who will of course follow believing that they too will have the wealth and power.

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