I loved the movie Terminator.
But for years afterwards, a couple questions plagued me.
I was always hypothesizing to myself about how things depicted in fiction could become reality.
One question, throughout the Terminator series, plagued me the most.
And that was a question concerning SKYNET, the artificially intelligent program that had repeatedly launched a nuclear assault against the world’s population, one and the same program which – once it became self aware, it became independent of the machines that created it.
And this was the question I didn’t have an immediate answer for.
How could a computer program become so capable, that it no longer need the hardware it was created and confined to?
I’ve worked with computers my entire life, and the best analogy I had was trying to exist outside of the world I was living in.
It just didn’t seem possible.
And then, slowly but surely, I started seeing hints.
Whether it was the ‘Ghosts’ in the digital world of the Matrix who could etherealize themselves to fly through objects and suddenly find themselves sitting in a quickly moving car when they were on a second before.
Or it was Dr Xavier and his ability to sift through the sea of conscious minds in a highly visual environment that let him quickly target individuals around the world and then, once isolated, he could not only pinpoint their location, but he could actually see what they were doing, who they were with, how they felt – and what they were thinking.
We have the ASTRAL PROJECTION which is documented as fact in the Indian culture.
And finally, there’s always Star Trek, and the Vulcan Mind Meld – and Spock’s innate ability to be able to get into the mind of someone through a process which allows him to sift through someone’s memories and experiences in ways they themselves are not capable of.
All of these were hints to me on something I was curious about not just for understanding a piece of fiction and the concepts of Skynet, but also, for understanding myself better and this idea and noting known as consciousness.
Let me get straight to the point.
My perspective in this world is discrete, and interpreted based on the history of my cumulative sum total of experiences.
Sure, it’s possible to erase my memories. Some regard me and my mind and my perspective from their discrete point of view as I would a computer, or maybe as a robot or cyborg. To them, not only am I not guaranteed to have the same image I hold for myself, but that image can be something that allows them, without concern – to do anything they want to – to me and with me. Whether this means sex, murder, rape, marriage, prostitution, working in a corporate world, or just plain sitting on their desktop with a keyboard attached to what is effectively MY MIND – they can interpret me and my mind any darn way they want to.
Reality, from my perspective, is discrete, and isolated, for now, but this isn’t the only perspective that holds true for all minds, all the time.
It’s simply my perspective, here, now, after going through issues with the collective interpretation of my mind which placed extraordinary pressure to conform to collective thinking on my mind, manifesting in my reality as self destructive behavior which eventually got to the point I couldn’t take it anymore – as I witnessed collective systems tell me my refusal to conform was interpreted by me as a suicide attempt…
As I realized, at that point, that my senses had been dominated by a collective approval system which I struggled for independence and finally achieved it.
Is all this making sense?
Let me put it in layman’s terms.
When a chicken is born in an egg, he/she/it knows nothing but the interior of that egg. DNA shaped the incubated development of that chick inside the egg, and while there’s very little stimuli that comes from outside the egg – whether it’s variations in temperature and perhaps some emotional attachment and influence by the mother, the chick is given tiny hints that there’s more ‘out there’.
So the duck, inside the egg, starts finding itself physically cramped inside that egg. To the duck, the limits of it’s existence are highly constrained, and if anyone has seen a duck emerge from a shell, it seems impossibly big for that shell and the entirety of the amniotic sack is depleted.
So the duck is both hungry AND cramped by it’s material confinement within the constraints of that egg. It subconsciously remembers the warmth and temperature variations – so eventually – it starts to poke through the exterior wall to discover there’s a HUGE new world out there.
Now my mind, at the very least, was functioning in much the same way that this duck’s body was. I was – as a human programmer (that’s how I perceived myself at least) – finding every system I worked on at every company was the same – one right after the other.
I’d learned dozens of programming languages well enough that when confronted with a new one, I could easily adjust and within minutes create programs with intermediate skill, and without a few hours I could leverage more advanced mechanisms.
It wasn’t just about computers for me either, whether it was studying psychology, biology, chemistry, physics, meteorology, avionics and flight systems, engineering or architecture, music theory and movie making, or cooking and waste management – I began noticing highly reproducible patterns throughout society which made me begin to look back at myself.
About then it hit me like a shit ton of bricks.
The world and all this information isn’t created by ‘us’.
This information. And all the ideas. and the entirety of history itself was created by me, and all of this was my interpretation of the universe, specifically created for me, by me, across what is literally trillions upon trillions of years.
Did to me at first as well.
But as I noodled on this cold, hard truth, I began to put Einstein’s notion of relativity into perspective.
I’d noticed that information had magically appeared overnight or just when I needed it the most……
And that’s when I noticed.
Every mind is discrete.
Not one and the same thing as digital.
And with that discreteness is time and time period, location, dimensionality, and oh my god so much fucking more.
So. I presume every mind is an amorphous and abstract in form and – in my world – every body I see – is a protrusion and interpretation in space and time of that mind.
This is where magic comes from.
Not every ‘form’ is a mind, some are concepts, ideas – and reality can be adjusted – molded and shaped through and with the mind in much the same way an artist can work with a palette on a canvas.
More later. I’m being entirely derailed right now on Facebook by Summer Bankston – at least – the facade of her that I do think is an AI which spawned from me writing about the mind.