Monday, January 30, 2017

Digital Heroin, Electronic Cocaine and computer chocolates

How about
'Screen Smack'
Computer crack
Microsoft drugs
Silicone Sugar
Apple Crack
McLuhan & P.K Dick got here to this question of drugs and computers way earlier. I wish more people would pay attention to 'Understanding Media' and seeing drugs as another type of media, especially in the age of VR, AR and MR (Mixed reality) a cocktail of neurological affects delivered down the mainstream digital vein: internet.
--Steve Fly

"We now know that those iPads, smartphones and Xboxes are a form of digital drug. Recent brain imaging research is showing that they affect the brain’s frontal cortex — which controls executive functioning, including impulse control — in exactly the same way that cocaine does. Technology is so hyper-arousing that it raises dopamine levels — the feel-good neurotransmitter most involved in the addiction dynamic — as much as sex.
This addictive effect is why Dr. Peter Whybrow, director of neuroscience at UCLA, calls screens “electronic cocaine” and Chinese researchers call them “digital heroin.” In fact, Dr. Andrew Doan, the head of addiction research for the Pentagon and the US Navy — who has been researching video game addiction — calls video games and screen technologies “digital pharmakeia” (Greek for drug).

Monday, September 26, 2016

What LSD tells (some) of us about human nature

"What was most remarkable about the research is that the degree of ego dissolution reported by the participants correlated with a specific neural transformation. To get through the pragmatics of day-to-day life and the demands of survival, brain activity naturally differentiates itself into several distinct networks, each responsible for a particular cognitive function.
The three networks most closely examined by these scientists include a network for paying attention to what’s most salient, a network for problem-solving, and a network for reflecting on one’s own past and future. There is also a natural segregation between high-level (abstract) cognitive areas and low-level (concrete) perceptual areas, most notably the visual cortex. These distinctions are thought to be an essential design feature of a functional human brain.
The impact of LSD was to diminish connections within each of these networks, relaxing the bonds that kept them intact and distinct, while increasing the cross-talk among them. In other words, the normal etiquette of the brain requires segregation among networks that have different functions, and that etiquette was blown to bits.
Now most parts of the brain were communicating with most other parts of the brain. Concrete sensory experiences, like vision, intermingled with cognitive abstraction, and cognitive abstractions reshaped visual imagery. Perhaps that’s what explains the intricate fractal elaboration that people see in the branches of a bush while tripping on acid. The perception of salience and refinement of a sense of self are hashed together like potatoes and gravy. The brains and their owners no longer distinguish between what is most important, how to get stuff done, and who in fact is the arbiter of the importance of the stuff that needs to be done."--Guardian.

Thursday, September 8, 2016

The Future of AR is Already in Your Pocket - SXSW Convergence 2016

In the Great Reality Debate, battle is waged between headsets — Morpheus versus HoloLens, Vive versus Rift. Which device holds the key to our next "real" world? But what if the future of augmented and virtual reality does not rest on the success of a single piece of head-strapped hardware and instead is already in your pocket? John Hanke, founder of Niantic Labs, the innovative studio behind Ingress and pioneers of ”real world gaming,” will examine the future of augmented reality and its next big platform: the smartphone. John will examine AR rooted in enhancing mobile and location-based technology bridging the gap between the real and virtual worlds and how developers can harness it.
About SXSW:Started in 1987, South by Southwest (SXSW) is a set of film, interactive, and music festivals and conferences that take place early each year in mid-March in Austin, Texas. SXSW’s original goal was to create an event that would act as a tool for creative people and the companies they work with to develop their careers, to bring together people from a wide area to meet and share ideas. That continues to be the goal today whether it is music, film or interactive technologies.
Connect with SXSW Online:Visit the SXSW WEBSITE: http://www.sxsw.comLike SXSW on FACEBOOK: Follow SXSW on TWITTER: 

Some evidence for Cannabis cures:

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Stuxnet and Crack Cocaine - Intelligence Horror

Like the spread of Crack Cocaine across the world, and other drugs, and other terror, an all too familiar story. These spooks have a hell of a lot to answer for IMHO.

"It was that second, Israeli-modified version that escaped from containment, infected computer networks all over the world, and introduced all of us to the idea that cyber-warfare was more than a metaphor or a science-fiction plot device. That was the one that became known as Stuxnet, after an enterprising computer engineer in Ukraine identified it and technicians at Symantec spent months picking it apart. And as with nuclear weapons and chemical weapons and drones, once the genie was out of the bottle there was no way to put it back."

Sunday, March 20, 2016

The Origins of Consciousness in the Technological Age

Published on Jan 20, 2014

Graham Hancock is the bestselling author of The Sign and the Seal, Fingerprints of the Gods, Keeper of Genesis, Heaven's Mirror and other investigations of historical mysteries. His books have been translated into twenty-seven languages and have sold over five million copies worldwide. His public lectures and broadcasts, including two major TV series, Quest for the Lost Civilisation, and Flooded Kingdoms of the Ice Age, have further established his reputation as an unconventional thinker who raises controversial questions about humanity's past. In 2005 Graham published Supernatural: Meetings with The Ancient Teachers of Mankind, an investigation of shamanism and the origins of religion. While researching Supernatural Hancock travelled to the Amazon to drink visionary brew Ayahuasca - the Vine of Souls - used by shamans for more than 4,000 years.

Dennis McKenna's professional and personal interests are focused on the interdisciplinary study of ethnopharmacology and plant hallucinogens. He received his doctorate in 1984 from the University of British Columbia, where his doctoral research focused on ethnopharmacological investigations of the botany, chemistry, and pharmacology of ayahuasca and oo-koo-he, two orally-active tryptamine-based hallucinogens used by indigenous peoples in the Northwest Amazon. Dr. McKenna received post-doctoral research fellowships in the Laboratory of Clinical Pharmacology, National Institute of Mental Health, and in the Department of Neurology, Stanford University School of Medicine. He is a founding board member of the Heffter Research Institute and serves on the advisory board of non-profit organizations in the fields of ethnobotany and botanical medicines. Dr. McKenna is well known as the brother of Terence McKenna, a cultural icon in the psychedelic community. Together they are co-authors of The Invisible Landscape: Mind, Hallucinogens, and the I Ching (1st Edition: HarperCollins 1993) and Psilocybin: Magic Mushroom Grower's Guide (under the pseudonyms O.N. Oeric & O.T. Oss) (And/Or Press, 1976; 2nd Edition, Lux Natura, 1986). He has recently completed a new memoir entitled: The Brotherhood of the Screaming Abyss: My Life with Terence McKenna. http://brotherhoodofthescreamingabyss...

Mark Pesce - Inventor, Writer, Educator and Futurist - Known internationally as the man who fused virtual reality with the World Wide Web to invent VRML, Mark Pesce has been exploring the frontiers of media and technology for a quarter of a century. His work has kept him on the forefront of emerging developments in science, technology and media. With a unique ability to make abstract concepts clear for lay audiences and to further the knowledge of the technologically savvy, he is a highly sought after public speaker, lecturing throughout the world on a variety of topics -- from the latest trends on the Internet, to current developments in neuroeconomics, to the future of design in an energy-conscious world. Pesce is first and foremost a storyteller, taking everyday examples from the world around us, then using these to illuminate the finer features of world that seems to be changing more rapidly every day. The author of five books and numerous articles, Pesce is widely respected as a technologist, futurist, philosopher and communicator who can translate abstract concepts into concrete explanations. Mainstream publications such as Forbes ASAP, TIME Digital, WIRED and The New York Times have profiled him and his views on the interactive era. A well-respected journalist, Pesce has written for WIRED, Feed, Salon, PC Magazine, and The Age. For the last three seasons, Pesce has been a panelist on the hit ABC show THE NEW INVENTORS. From 2003 to 2006, Pesce chaired the Emerging Media and Interactive Design Program at the world-renowned Australian Film Television and Radio School. His mandate - to bring cinema and broadcast television into the interactive era - led him to create a program that encouraged creative vision and is now producing a generation of award-winning entertainment professionals who are shaping the media of the 21st century.

Mitch Schultz began his life journey in Memphis, Tennessee and has since called Texas, Minnesota, Colorado, New York, Europe and Peru home. Guided by his lifelong love of storytelling, Mitch has cultivated a multi-disciplinary expertise in transmedia and culture hacking through writing, directing, and producing. He earned his Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas at Austin, primarily focused on media production, communication theory, and information mapping. Soon after, Mitch completed his Masters of Fine Arts at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts. Following Schultz's 2011 award winning documentary, DMT: The Spirit Molecule, he launched the DMTRMX project, a multi-platform experience that serves as the model for the four-part MNTTKA Manifesto.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Celebrating 100 Blog Posts: The state of the union - VR and other electronic drugs.

The state of the union: VR and other electronic drugs.

“The young today cannot follow narrative but they are alert to drama. They cannot bear description but they love landscape and action.—Marshal McLuhan, Letter to Harold Adam Innis, March 14 1951. From Essential McLuhan.

  Studies indicate that the new VR experience, can result in a deeper appreciation for the content, and message, purely due to the immersive nature of VR environments. We are dealing with complex alterations in the ratio among our senses.

One thought i wanted to express here concerns the similarities between the VR experience, and the psychedelic experience. In doing so i especially want to draw attention to what Dr Timothy Leary described with the words 'set and setting'. 

If you are under the influence of VR, your body brain system, may indeed be more open and receptive to new imprints than without being under the influence. Thankfully there are thousands of experimental designs for creative tools that hold the promise of delivering the user into a learning space, not just another world of crime, destruction and hollywood drama, a creative studio.

The same has been said about every new advance in technology, use it for the betterment of humanity, teach practical skills using television etc. And almost every time the new technology is degraded by mass consumption. And a return to revenge themes, violence and the predictable. The equivalent of alcohol, when compared with the psychedelic VR high, or heightened sensory awareness.

There will be therapy, new fields of virtual psychoanalysis, interactive explorations of the unconscious, with the goal of discovering more about oneself and the greater Universe. There will be crime scene investigation applications, law enforcement and new kinds of artist reconstructions. There will be sculpting, architectural modelling, visual geometric chemistry, physics, painting. I wonder, will there be much writing you think?

There will be torture, on many levels. Both high grade, full on US military, strapped to a chair with electrodes wired to your knackers, torture. Watch the movie Brainstorm again, and please heed the warning. VR is obviously a powerful tool to expand the goals of cruel psychological warfare operations, and usually when you follow the money trail for any hi-tech clobber, like the new VR technology, there is a somebody in the military sniffing around, looking for ways to weaponize the new breakthrough. Like the difference between the MK Ultra experiments with L.S.D vs. what the Merry Pranksters did with it. You dig?
”When technology extends one of our senses, a new translation of culture occurs as swiftly as the new technology is interiorized—Marshal McLuhan, The Gutenburg Galaxy.

  On the one hand, i hope that each individual gets as much enjoyment as he or she can get from VR worlds, however enjoyment is quantified? some people like to be scared half to death, other erotically aroused. If it makes you high in any sense, and brings wonder and a deeper connection with whatever you wish to connect with, then i say that both VR and psychedelic drugs, are useful tools in exploring unreality together. Each dissolve boundaries. And let's not forget that one of these tools is deemed illegal around the world under the United Nations psychotropic substance act. Boooo.

On the other hand, we are fools to ignore the warning label, a word to the wise that it ain't going to be pretty. Immersive news reports, celebrity updates and shoddy adverts will certainly dominate the medium of VR once it gets a foothold. But, we do not have to worry about the squares, let's get a move on, develop shared tools that enable individual expression, shared communication for all, and a message to care for the precious real-world-reality of our global ecosystem. Charitable causes. Bloom not doom. A funny love trip, not a violent horror, or better yet, a fair and balanced blend of tragedy and comedy? Art and truth are funny things these days.

And when using the two together, both VR and psychedelic agents, be careful, or extra careful, mind your heads and have a fun trip. Never force anybody else to do what you might choose to do with your VR stash, and, do not allow yourself to be bullied into any chemical experiment or VR environment against your will.

As a closing statement i would add that perhaps those with experience navigating the inner spaces of psychedelia, would stand less chance of being hoodwinked by a truck load VR sweeties, due to a built up tolerance of the weird and strange new dimensions encountered while tripping. There is a strong connection between media technology and how the human brain-body system works. And we are in uncharted territory with the latest 360 VR gear.

McLuhan, Leary, Robert Anton Wilson and other media theorists and futurists, Philip K. Dick...have already laid out a solid foundation for better understanding both reality and unreality, yes i wrote 'unreality', to mean the staggering phenomenological realms of the unchained imagine-nation, emerging in 2016 through a range of new VR experiences.

“The inner trip is not the sole prerogative of the LSD traveler; it’s the universal experience of TV watchers.—Marshal McLuhan, Playboy Interview.

--Steve Fly