Posted by: zyxo | October 14, 2008

Matter, Genes, Brains, RAM, and ???


Kevin WarwickImage via WikipediaWhen we think of evolution as “information that is copied, and changes sometimes during the process”, the key words are : information, copy, and change.

In the present post I will concentrate on information, not the information on itself, but on the carrier of information.
Chronologically we first had dead matter : the necessary information about it was the matter itself. Whether it got copied, continued to exist, or was newly produced (henc not strictly evolution) does not matter : it survived the process.
The next step was living matter with the information not in the matter itself but in a special information-carrier : genes
Then arrived the brains, carrying information not about the organisms but about what it takes an organism to function, to behave, to communicate, to think.

Next, we, humans sort of copied this brains and created information-carrying things we call computors.

But what will be next ?

Obviously, living brains are much more powerful than the existing computors, especially at parrallel-processing. So the future should go in the direction of using living brains. Our computors on the other hand are much more precise, so we should keep them improving too. Given these two statements, a mixture between the two should be the nec plus ultra.

At the university of reading, Kevin Warwick and his team are exactly doing that : they made a robot, controlled by living brain tissue. It is still very elementary, but so was eniac !

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