July 20, 2009
I was thinking that maybe the reason I am so long winded in my blogs is the same reason that I have a long password. Security demands that a password that is being constantly attacked and never defended must be stronger than the possibility of an attacker finding the password. How does that relate to blogs? Blogs are information, a strength of intelligent monologue can tell a real person from a fake one. A blog that includes a single video and the words in the box below is indistinguishable from a spam. A spam takes a fraction of a second to create when properly automated. Spams cost so little that even when they are blocked by 90% of users, 10% is still enough to turn a profit. Think about that for a second. In a capitalist society profit is the motive force deciding business decisions. Long term, short term, it's all part of the same game. A spammer can overlook a million people who have lost 5 seconds to their scheme for ten measly bucks so long as the spammer turns a profit. Ethics is where spam fails, but profit is where spam succeeds. Many, many people are able to overlook the means for the ends. Whenever someone says that the ends justifies the means, think about spam. Philosophy discusses right and wrong and whether ends are able to justify the means. Of course the great philosophical debates of the ages have shown time and again that people cannot agree on the base moral and ethical foundations of our civilization. Philosophers doubly so.
By making my blog extremely long and only barely understandable I am creating a perfectly clear, difficult to copy resource of human information that identifies my character as a human being. No spammer can do the same without breaking a rule of information theory. A Chomsky Robot was able to fool 3-5 (or possibly hundreds) of security researchers for less than 5 minutes. A more complex robot like AltBot that uses a source that isn't searchable might be able to fool people for hours or months. But after reading hundreds of blogs (I'm sure none of you have or will) a person can either be convinced or not whether a human is behind it. This Turing Test allows me to create a genuine connection with my readers that is nearly uncopyable. My readers having read even two sentences of this long-winded drivel can associate my mind with their own at little cost to them to ensure that when I tell them something, I am not jerking them around, I am not a robot telling them to buy v1agr4. When you see the below link fear not what lies behind it, fear the loss of community when I write a robot (or mechanical turk) that does this amusing task for me.
And now for bonus philosophical idea: the short clip I posted at the top of this blog is yet another piece of information. I created it today. It's incredibly dense and yet incredibly sparse. How is that possible? Well let's have a look shall we? There's a subvocalization, view of my feet, grass, a trail, a street, and cars. We can see all in incredible 352x288 resolution from my gPhone. If you look at my video's information, you can see that I have an account at Google using my handle. I made a comment on the video and that is the philosophical idea. All of this information can be gained from the fact that I live in Seattle, so the actual information is not the data presented, but the medium. Video is a good medium for communicating subtle things, difficult ideas, and feelings. It is also extremely good at communicating with hopefully very little confusion a small bit of 3d space over a long period of time. I hope that in the near future I will use various video and audio recording devices to convey ideas that most certainly cannot be conveyed properly with text. And perhaps I can take a break from writing long paragraphs if I can convince people with photo, audio, or video that I am still here and I value the community that I may (nay must) share with those who read even a sentence of my blog.Permalink