[ExI] the next 20 IQ points

spike spike66 at att.net
Wed Feb 10 18:07:54 UTC 2016

-----Original Message-----
From: extropy-chat [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of Tara Maya
Subject: Re: [ExI] the next 20 IQ points

>...Maybe the app I want is already out there too. I always feel sad that when I look at a tree, or a flower, or a dog, or a car, all I think is: tree, flower, dog, car…. I know the the trees and flowers have species names as well as colloquial names, that the dogs have breeds, that the cars have whatever cars have. It would be cool if an app would point, click and tell me the name. Of course, it would work really well with a visual overlay in a GoogleGlass type device too, but even if it had the extra step of taking a picture, it would be cool. ...Tara 

Sure, but wait, there's more.  OK we can probably do what you suggest.  Why do we want to know the name?  The name of something is a tool, or pathway to knowing something more, something cool about what you are seeing.  For nature stuff, we can get the taxonomy all the way, which is a good start.  What I want is some way to get to stuff like known behavior of a particular beast for instance, a kind of mobile wiki or OK Google, tuned to what it knows I like to know.

We overlook most wildlife because we focus on the meter scale stuff almost entirely.  Even the term wildlife to most people brings to mind lions and tigers and bears, oh my.  But really when you think about it, those three (and humans) are almost the same thing.  Anatomically, only slight variations on a theme.  Perhaps we add in birds, which have more diversity than the mammals, but even then, most wildlife is overlooked entirely, stepped upon, sprayed with toxins, ignored, avoided or reviled: all that stuff down on the centimeter scale and below.  That is your wildlife easiest to find, regardless of where you live, and has waaaay more diversity, in form, function and behavior.  This would give us a terrific application of the Next20 app, and a good example where just the taxonomical name would open a lot of doors.

More mundane stuff, but useful: cars.  What about the car?  Anything cool about it?  We get the fans of any particular car (or motorcycle) to write up some cool fun stuff about that car or bike, where it was made, how many, what years, any known flaws or characteristics, typical resale value if you care, that kind of thing.

Places: oh my, there is so much we could do with that.  Current use, future plans (if known) modern history, deeper into recent history, then to human history, then into geological history.  It causes a place to go four dimensional.

Think about where you are sitting right now.  What was there the day you were born?  What was there a hundred years ago?  A thousand?  A million?  Do you know?  I don't.  Still don't.  No clue, don't really know where or how to find out.  What was the coolest damn thing that happened within walking distance of where you are sitting?  (That part I know.)  Within 20 minutes drive?  An hour?  What process caused the geological formations visible from where you are now?  When did that happen?  Do you know approximately what you would find if you drilled straight down from your chair 10 meters?  100 meters?  Rock?  What kind of rock?  How close that stuff has been for all this time, yet we don't even know what the heck it is or how it got there.

We have been walking right past the library, never going inside.  We have been like the internet-enabled moderns who never log on.  We have been neglecting all the cool stuff we could be learning, ignorant for no justifiable reason, shambling along in darkness, following a candle in a cave when we could be out in the sparkling sunshine of the clear summer morning.  We are the first generation who has been handed the gift of a glorious alternative to ignorance.  Yet we are still going around not knowing stuff.  We need to stop that forthwith, and KNOW STUFF!


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