Friday, 12 April 2013

Lots a Tooth? No Matter!

I thought this Mousey was chewing some gum, but turns out that green lump in its mouth is a fully-functional, bioengineered tooth, the result of "tooth regenerative therapy" research at Tokyo University .

Basically that little mouse (Jerry) lost a tooth and grew a new one in its place with the help of some scientists:
To create the new tooth, the researchers took epithelial cells and mesenchymal cells from a mouse embryo and cultivated them together in a collagen-based medium to create a tiny tooth bud. A mass of tissue that has the potential to develop into a tooth.

This mass of tissues was implanted in the spot where Jerry's old tooth used to be and after fifty days that mouse could nibble on cheese properly again. The new tooth grew to the same height as the surrounding ones, is just as hard, and has all the same blood vessels and nerves.
Researchers are hoping that this bioengineering process will one day make dentures and false teeth obsolete.

But when one considers the future of Bioethics in this context, the picture the late Rod Hull's'Emu' says a lot:

I don't know about you, but the potential here gives me the creeps.


Human language, in a most rudimentary plan, first emerged around one million years ago. 

Of course, since then language has continued to advance and diverge into many distinct lingua. But it is the rate and interconnection of change in language today that captures our attention here.

Knowledge of the fact that at least three-thousand distinct tongues have disappeared over a period of three generations, among with the cultures they represent, is perhaps softened by the associate fact that at least one-third of the words in any modern full volume English dictionary are less than twenty years old!

The reasons? In part due to the amazing pace of scientific progress and technological advance (bosson, toxinal, cynoacrolate, C++, hyperlinks, simplexity: new science simply need new words). Lately, global media and brands have spurred novel vernacular (Digerati, VIVA, Google, Nike, Nokia). 

SMS textlife brings new gist (CU@10...!). Mass-mood changes due to shifts in social dynamics and habit require new words (Nanostalgia, the yearning desire to see a repeat of Star Trek that was only shown the day before.Ampathy, the ultra-intense feeling of unity people experience at a rave. And Edutainment, meshing of fun with learning. 

Languages have also evolved because of mass migration (Brazilian-Portuguese is quite different to native Portuguese...why?...Neo-tribes means new ideas; new ideas needs new language). 

Fundamentally, and most of all, languages have come and gone as a consequence of the multidimensional interconnection of words. For example, as English language flows across cultural boundaries it can not help but eat-up the colloquial phrases of say Hindi to produce a new language now known as 'Hinglish,' often seamlessly combining two different tongues in mid-sentence, even mid-word. 

English, the king of predatory lingua, preys on inflections and phrases from literally every known and available language on the surface of this planet. One hundred years or so from now there will dozens of version of English, each seen as a separate language in their own right. 

As English interconnects and gobbles up more and more words, it changes and diverges, but will remain a ravenous predator. The result? From street slang to the edge of the arts, media, science and technology the diversity of languages and never been so multidimensional.

Peter Senge - a real mentor of mine - is director of the Centre for Organizational Learning at the MIT Sloan School of Management. He is known as author of the book The Fifth Discipline: The art and practice of the learning organization.

Senge says humanity is currently stuck in a dire era of fatalism. We live with the assumption that the deep problems our societies are faced with will never be solved. 
Paradoxically, ending this mentality will be the only way to move forward with development. 
In the following video he gives examples of how we can begin to believe we can affect the future and break the cycle.

Emerging Hypergovernment

Government ideology, once obstinate and biased in the extreme. Idealism; them and us; you are wrong, I am right. The left verses the right, the middle takes on all. It was outright war. 

But nowadays?.... Political dogma is all but dead. The potency of idealism is old and grey. So the absolute left steal ideas from the far right. The far right sits comfortably with the L-word. Ideas and all cells alike, have lost their sense of loyalty it seems. So communism adopts capitalist concepts to oil its wheels. Capitalism embraces socialism to soften its tone. 

In a transdimensional reality, dogged political pragmatism pinches from wherever, whoever and whatever it must to achieve its ultimate aim - Hypergovernment.
The Power of Hyperscience
Science, since its early origins, was held in separate, often totally isolated schools. The intellectual wars amid the disparate schools of thought that raged for hundreds of years, have at the very least slowed scientific discovery and innovation; at worst, stopped advance dead. 

Now a sea change; a seed change even. At last the intellectual turf guarding is falling sway to the interconnection of ideas. 

Ponder this: 

To construct a new theory today, a hypothesis must stand with an astronomical number of findings, with many contradicting ideas. The reason? For a scientific discipline to reach maximum evolvability the number of idea interconnections needs to be very rich. As the number of connections goes up, so the possibilities for new discoveries increase.

And now think of this if you will: 

To comprehend how life on earth emerged, you have to understand the complexity and systems theories; understand phase transition and thermodynamics; comprehend computational and information theory; grasp quantum and molecular mechanics; interpret microgeology, electro-magnetism and radioisotope decay physics. 

You have to interconnect and interrelated each of these discrete science to begin to see how life may have emerged. Neglect or miss any of these disciplines and the answer to life remains a mystery.

The lesson: 

Many of the most significant scientific breakthroughs, now and in future, will be a consequence of the interconnection of diverse and often unrelated scientific discoveries and innovation.
First to the World 3D Micro Scale Multiplicative Printer.

Fuji's world’s first MEMS-based piezo cartridge printer enables low-cost high-precision jetting of complex organic, inorganic and metallic fluids.

Micron-scale products and sub-assemblies such as flexible multilayer PCBs or flexible flat screen displays can now be produced in one hit, layer-by-layer at a significantly lower cost and higher quality.

Link to Fuji

Thursday, 11 April 2013

The Power of Piracy and Viral Marketing.

Do you like dance music? What about today’s electronic sounds? What about the current wave of highly technical rhythm Drum & Bass the kids can’t get enough of?

Not to every ones taste I suspect. But the fact remains, it is a billion dollar market worldwide today.

So how did it start?

It began in the ghettos of South London at the end of the 1980s. In neighbourhoods of Brixton, Peckham, Camberwell, with DJ names like Dr S Gachet, Jumping Jack Frost, Danny Ramplin, et al.  They begun to plagiarise and mix American East Coast ‘elecro’ with London R&B and Dub Reggie on pirate radio.

They put on all night free parties in old lock-up warehouses and dens. By about 1988 the illegal venues were chock-a-block with punters. In the greater London area more people where listening to the now dozens of pirate radio stations than the BBC’s and commercial stations.

The commercial DJs caught on to it and next thing you know obscure underground tunes were being played on prime air time, eventually making it into the official music charts.

Would this have happened without the clandestine world of Piracy? Arrr, Jim Lad! I doubt it!

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Go the Fuck to Sleep!’


A Bad Thing for Authors, Artists and Publishers?

A couple of years ago ‘Go the Fuck to Sleep!’ by Adam Mansbach, hit the No.1 spot on's best-seller list. Thing is, it did so a month before the book was billed for launch. If it wasn’t due out for four weeks, how did it swipe a film option with Fox 2000 and reach the pinnacle of the online publishing world?

Basically, the book idea came about as a result of the trials and tribulations of getting the author’s 2 year old into bed and to sleep. After the predictable 7 o’clock shrills and tit-for-tat, Mansbach up-dated his friends with the episode on Facebook. However, the response was overwhelming ‘You have to turn this story into a book!’

There are many ‘known’ factors that just ‘don't’ explain why this book has reached the heights that it did, and as soon as it did.

What seems to set this book apart is the ‘free-to-friends’ PDF copy of the book went absolutely viral as a result of acquaintances passing it on; then in an exponential way the copy-of-copies began to spread like runner way train. Hence, the power of ‘e-piracy’ ignited an explosive ‘Viral’ growth in the market.

But Piracy is bad!..... Isn’t it?

It's the scourge of the music industry. With the rise of e-reading, booksellers now fear it to a similar degree. But in the ‘Go the Fuck the Sleep’ case, fighting piracy would not have done a service to the book. Piracy, it seems, is what has driven the book's real-world, money-making, flying-off-the-shelves success. The bootleg copy hasn't replaced the actual artefact. It has only served as a sort of free advertising. Piracy can hurt publishers, but it can also help them.

The question is: when does piracy work to a author’s, artist’s, and publisher's benefit; and when does it work to its detriment? If ‘Go the Fuck to Sleep’ weren't a children's book of sorts, would parents be so eager for hard-copy versions?

This is fertile ground for research. Would-be author’s, music artists and publishers need to scrutinize the mechanics of e-piracy, replaying success stories like this one over and over again in slow motion, in an effort to see just what combination of variables caused the pirate's cutlass to land directly into a giant sack of doubloons.

I will be posting more examples on viral e-piracy over the comming months, with an emphysis on what's current and what the e-piracy community see as coming next!

Link to story.

Link to viral marketing.

'Go the Fuck the Sleep' snipit.