Cultural Machine

Cultural Synesthesia

Meera Khare & Apoorva Bhandari | Open Mind | 11th May 2023

Intuitively this seems right. Synesthesia was part of the conscious experience of all early humans, but has generally receded into the unconscious mind, presumably because sharply-differentiated senses proved an evolutionary advantage when navigating the world. Synesthesia survives in all of us as "subliminal associations", and a fortunate few people still inherit it as conscious experience (2,300 words)

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The Machine That Never Was

Sheon Han | Quanta | 3rd May 2023

Before there were real computers, Alan Turing invented conceptual computers. While still a graduate student in 1936 he proposed a schematic model: Let there be a sensor which reads symbols from an advancing tape and responds mechanically according to a fixed list of instructions — if this, then that. From which, with some architectural input from John von Neumann, all computing followed (1,350 words)

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