Seven Songs written by A.I that suck less than Techno

Over the last few years, Computer Scientists have been writing programs designed to create original music, based on a technique known as “machine learning“.

These “machine learning” algorithms vary in their respective methods; some analyse certain attributes like melodies and the lyrical content of a bunch of selected songs then mix them all together to create a new original track; whereas some rely on the mathematical nature of musical theory to create new musical scores.

Anyway, they’re all more intelligent and pleasing to the ear than club bangers.

  1. Daddy’s Car: “written” by “Flow Machine”, which sampled a bunch of Beatles songs to create an original new track.

2. “Christmas”. Probably my favourite of the lot. This was made by “Neural Story” that analysed tunes and lyrics of popular Xmas songs as well as imagery (yep photos) of Xmas. I can’t wait to set up a front-yard Xmas display featuring  decapitated reindeer with this blaring out of a megaphone. Creepy as all fuck.

 

Continue reading “Seven Songs written by A.I that suck less than Techno”

The Best Lost Insults that we need to Bring Back!

Dictionary.com has posted its list of the 12 Insults We Should Bring Back.

“Everyone knows a primo insult or two, even if your personal rules of decorum prohibit their usage. But if you think about it, there aren’t many new insults (or swear words, for that matter). The ones you heard from that guy in middle school are pretty much the same ones you hear now…[so] head back a couple of hundred years. These words/terms might seem rather quaint and out of place now, but back then, they got your attention.”

Amongst my favourites were “Gnashnab” (someone who just complains all the time),”Zounderkite” (a Victorian word meaning “idiot”) and Bedswerver (somebody who sleeps around a lot).

Feel free to post your favourites below:

How the humble wrist-watch put humankind on the path to cyborg slavery

In the mid-1900s, at the dawn of the computer age, the excited commentators of the time described a future utopia where humankind would be freed from the need to work and would struggle to fill up the long days with enough time-eating hobbies.

This obviously has not happened….

Even though we, as a species, are quite comfortably the head-honchos of our planet, the majority of us humans still need to work pretty hard at it.

If you were to strip away humankind’s technological advances, human societies couldn’t compare with insect colonies’ amazing efficiency and coordination; thanks to insects’ inbuilt senses that detect tiny hormonal changes and pheromonal ejections, allowing them to perfectly synchronize their work. As a result, insect colonies can build amazing things with minimal resources.

Take away our gadgets, with our relatively blunted senses, humans can’t match the efficiency of our insect counterparts. But who needs antennae when we’ve got brains that can invent wrist watches and Gantt charts?

With the human invention of modern time measurement, we enabled our species to plan and build grander and more intricate projects through our vastly improved synchronisation and management of resources. The invention of mechanical clocks, due to their more convenient and reliable time-keeping, effectively enabled us to pack more into every day.

I am no troglodyte – I am hugely appreciative for the advantages that science and technology have provided. I have it to thank for the Enlightenment values that I live by, my longer and healthier life, and the sense of wonder that I feel when looking up at the stars,  knowing that I am staring into our Universe’s past.

But in all its wonder, science and technology has also helped things to turn a bit shit. Inventions and advancements when at inception looked certain to improve the quality of our lives have often become the tools of our captors.

The invention of the town clock tower in the 1500s, followed by the mass production of pocket watches in the early 1900s, were arguably the first steps in humankind’s transition into some kind of cybernetic state of permanent serfdom.

Continue reading “How the humble wrist-watch put humankind on the path to cyborg slavery”

How Synaptic Pruning messes with our future happiness

Like the pirates of olden days, give them a bottle of rum and any Middle Years school teacher will be happy to regale you with the adventures and bat-shit insanity they witness on a daily basis as part of their vocation.

Flipped over tables; the formerly quiet kid who has turned to loud questioning of school/society/teacher’s haircut; the year 8 girl who took the time to carefully cut out the letters in foil to decorate her History folder with the shiny phrase “lick my ass”; the amputee girl who decided to throw her prosthetic leg across the classroom at another student for some reason.*

So those who are are forced to be around adolescents as part of their parenting obligations, or worse, as part of their jobs, often find them themselves in front of an erupting volcano spitting out exploding lava bombs of moronic shit. So we turn to booze, but also science! The latter tells us that the fecal eruption we’re witnessing is most likely attributed to a physical process within their feeble brains called “synaptic pruning” (Lubman, 2007) (Blakemore and Choudhry, 2006).

Continue reading “How Synaptic Pruning messes with our future happiness”

The Rise of the Machines?

I’ve heard about the wonder that is Google’s AutoDraw.com – an artificial intelligence (AI) based program that can supposedly decipher basic drawings. From Google’s P.R department:AutoDraw is a new kind of drawing tool. It pairs machine learning with drawings from talented artists to help everyone create anything visual, fast.

Well fast it is, but accurate? Not so very. Armed with four cans of beer and a trackpad, I thought I’d give it a try. I was in some ways impressed, in some ways not. Please note that in the spirit of fairness, I have chosen to post the algorithm’s first semi-accurate guess next to my inebriated touchpad-drawn doodles.

Continue reading “The Rise of the Machines?”

Thinking of Quitting Facebook? How the Powerful may be Using Big Data Against You

The Guardian has published an undoubtably terrifying investigation into Cambridge Analytica (CA), the ‘Big Data‘ analytics company who allegedly “hijacked” the democratic process to ensure that outcomes of the Brexit EU Referendum and the 2016 American Election. And they accomplished this by using data primarily sourced from the online interactions between users on social networks including Facebook.

According to the article, CA  – a company with links to the former Brexit leader Nigel Farage, American President Donald Trump, and Trump’s controversial senior adviser Steve Bannon –  offered to help the Brexit campaign with its use of “psychological warfare” (or “psyops” for short).

Continue reading “Thinking of Quitting Facebook? How the Powerful may be Using Big Data Against You”

French Election Win Proves that eating Offal and Onions Makes you Smarter


Hazar! The ignorati who converted the British Parliament speaker’s box into a drop-toilet, and the Whitehouse into a moonshine distillery, have failed to storm the Bastille. The Guardian reports:

“The pro-EU centrist Emmanuel Macron has won the French presidency in a decisive victory over the far-right Front National leader, Marine Le Pen, and vowed to unite a divided and fractured France…Macron, 39, a former economy minister who ran as a “neither left nor right” independent promising to shake up the French political system, took 65.1% to Le Pen’s 34.9%, according to initial projections from early counts.

His victory was hailed by his supporters as holding back a tide of populism after the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s victory in the US election.”

I, for one, am happy to see that our planet’s descent into a nationalist, fascist shit vortex floating through space is no longer a forgone conclusion. What are your thoughts?