Looking Around The Labyrinth – A Chat With Cliff About the “Outside-In Robot”

Hello everyone. I’m popping in to let you know that Jason and I have decided to postpone our trip until March. We had good intentions, but sometimes life throws you curveballs. We’re both feeling a bit tender, not at the top of our game, and California demands we come fully engaged. We’ve been touched by all the support we received and have been in contact by email or mail with most donors. If you are reading this and haven’t heard from us already, please drop Jason a line at argusfest@gmail.com. We didn’t have contact information for everyone. Jason will be working to edit segments of our material over the next few months to create an introduction that he hopes will create space for more people to picture the challenge humanity faces as Web3 sensor network installation and the financialization of natural life proceed at a brisk pace. Some of the donations will support Jason’s work on that project, and the rest we’ll hold for the spring trip. We are more than happy to return donations to anyone who requests it. His van is now roadworthy after weeks of difficult labor, and that is a happy milestone achieved.

Since Jason will be focused on developing that video over the winter months, I will be working to develop some basic skills in the technical arena. I got a second monitor and am making progress; though I can certainly never match the quality of his editing. I have presented a few podcasts and walk throughs of my elaborate maps – the labyrinths. Today I tried out an hour-long format with my friend Cliff. We started with a peek into the origins of WGBH Boston and public television, talked about the stories we live inside, and then pivoted to a critical examination of new technologies of emotion-sensing software and cyber-physical networks that aspire to be “outside-in” robots. They intend for us to live inside these networked “robots.” Billionaires and proponents of Generalized Artificial Intelligence want us to adopt digital identities, transact through coded token “social” currencies, “perform” humanity, and help them manifest new forms of information-based “life.” No thank you.

A link to the map – here.

A link to Cliff’s channel – here.

Outside In Robot Chat – here.

I don’t think Google / Alphabet or Eric Schmidt appreciate these investigations. Below is a discussion Jason and I did last week deconstructing a SmartCon chat Schmidt did recently with Sergey Nazarov of Chainlink.

Eric Schmidt Smartcon chat – here.

I got another ding on my youtube channel last week, so I can’t upload or stream for now. I added today’s chat with Cliff to my back up channel and invite you to subscribe to it and / or send me your email so I can add you to the notification list when I put up new content. I’ve also been working to upload videos to Archive.org where they can be viewed and downloaded. Look for “Alison McDowell” or “Wrench In The Gears.”

Someone made a suggestion that I begin to engage people via a regular Q&A. I wasn’t sure, because I don’t get many viewers, but after talking with Jason and Cliff I decided maybe I could try and solicit questions in advance via a form and then select one or more to address in a given week. If I don’t get submissions, I can always read an old blog post for the podcast. See this page for downloadable audio-only content.

My hope would be to support people as they examine these systems in their own communities. “Looking at the Labyrinth” seems to be exactly what needs to be done if we are to get to the middle and walk out, don’t you think? If you have a question for me or an observation about what this looks like where you live, consider sending something my way. For now I’m thinking maybe Wednesday evenings around 8pm EST. Jason hasn’t had a chance to make the form yet. I just asked him today. In the meantime, these are the questions I plan to use. If you’re really excited about this idea, feel free to email a submission to me at timpsila@protonmail.com.

  • Tell me a little bit about yourself. I’d love to know generally where you’re located, what  you care about, what your gifts are – that sort of thing. Just a few sentences is fine.
  • I’m interested to hear what interests you about my research / perspective. Where does it resonate with you?
  • Do you have an observation to share about how you see this “predator energy” showing where you live?
  • Do you have a question or comment about a recent presentation?
  • Please share your preferred contact information – phone and/or email.
  • If I use your inquiry in my weekly mailbag podcast, I’ll be sure to drop you a line in advance. I’m working on my Zoom skills, so if you’d be open to having a recorded chat be sure to let me know.
Thanks again to everyone who made contributions. I’ve come to trust my intuition, and my gut said wait. I’m excited that by spring we’ll have new material we can share with audiences in California to help them understand the lens we’re using on this unfolding drama.

7 thoughts on “Looking Around The Labyrinth – A Chat With Cliff About the “Outside-In Robot”

  1. David Elliot says:

    Your inaugural talk with Cliff worked very well for me. It painted a clear and cohesive central theme. I always find your thoughts interesting and compelling. I think this new format is well geared for bringing newcomers up to speed, however. “You will be assimilated” is the fundamental reason and motivation for the machine, never formally stated or even hinted at. For those who are better at pattern recognition, this central reality has been discernible for a while now. Indeed, they are ‘birthing and educating a baby machine’ which will one day rule us and eventually strangle us. I believe this style of presentation will enable more to see this too. Well done, Alison. Thanks! Keep them coming…

  2. kocotube01 začasni says:

    First thing that popped into my mind in the smart-conning video is the logo. Again 3/4 symbol arrangement (only square of the four elements is fully blackened). And, of course, masonic symbols: two pillars (of polarity), two circles of mind and soul (suggestive of usage of pair of compasses) and a square (boxed mind). If I expand now a little more, the square (blackened) is representing the”beast system” that has been build for the last six millennia and is fully in the hands of the ruling internationalist elite families. Two circles represent minds and souls of people (that are kept divided into two diametrically opposing mindsets) by the use of the tool for control – dialectics – which is symbolized by the two pillars. Eventually the process of “squaring the unbound minds” of people through the use of dialectics will be completed when Tau (two Pi hemispheres of mind and soul) will “die” by the squaring (boxing in) process and be “resurrected” (charred Phoenix style) as one blackened hexagon (digitized circle). Then, after the process of this mind squashing, the logo will finally be truly binary, consisting of only two elements, a black hexagon, representing soul/mind-less “human” and “humanized” drones, and a circle reddened by friction, representing “free-spirited”, bound by limits (Matrix) of the system’s eternal dialectical hot grinding process (so called progress into perpetuity, also known as hell on Earth for those willing to play along, symbolized by flaming Phoenix). See what I mean here: https://ibb.co/mNgKZpc

    … and … is it only me who alternatively reads “by China-Link” as entertaining.

    Right now, in my country, Slovenija; our national TV begun running a series of national TV advertisements (we are paying for our own menticide, since national TV is by law an obligatory cost, payable by all households):
    🙂 tele-doctor selling us an idea of having an online doctor available at all times;
    🙂 a digital version of reassurance by local big insurance players inviting people to join into schemes that will cover (private) orthodontist services. We have public obligatory health insurance tax funded dentistry system, but is not working for people, since there is nor enough dentists and you can get an appointment once every two years, if you are lucky. But these schemes will magically solve the problem;
    🙂 Another “movement” towards so called “digital society” is a sudden outburst in the Media about the need for immediate overhaul (fundamental reconstruction, as the insiders are demanding) of the Social Services System. Slovenia is “social republic”, as stated in the constitution. The TV news claim that all appropriately schooled and trained social workers have left the Service and all who remain are in-house lawyers who are forced to do the social work job with clientele.

    Seems to me that both crises have been intentionally manufactured in the last thirty years of our “independence” (as lackey state to Hapsburg overlords to the north) by Chamber of Doctors — an independent entity, which decides the quota of doctors being trained every year in our schools of medicine (intentionally set too low for our needs for doctors and dentists on national level) — and by our governing bureaucracy (financial ministry) that allocates inadequate amount of money for medical and social public programs, again intentionally to create, by design, a problem that can be then solved in a very particular manner. I expect, some day after 2030, I will be allotted my personal doctor, tele-operating out of Botswana and my Latvian dentist will be taking care of my rotten teeth from afar, across the EU. All neatly insured and re-insured, running on public, government provided smart infrastructure.

    Our national poet, France Prešern, almost two hundred years ago welcomed, in one of his poems — “Od železne ceste” — arrival of train service, connecting our country both to Austria and Italy. He called it “iron road” and rejoiced of it as an opportunity to become free to travel (to expand knowledge about the wide world). If I paraphrase the poem: “Honey (speaking to his imaginary muse), finally the iron road has almost arrived, and soon I will be able to fly to other cities, free as a bird. Will you take me with you so I can also see those foreign cities? I intend to go alone, to have some fun on my own and keep a mistress in every foreign city. So be it. I, too, might have five suitors waiting for me in every city, from Vienna to Trieste. And so bickering between the two ensues, until they realize that their love escapades might end up badly for both of them, and therefore they decide it would be best for both to get married and then travel together to those foreign cities.”
    Although the poet starts enthusiastically, favoring the arrival of the “iron road”, he soon, through deduction (simulation of potentially failed relationships), figures out that he is better off if he puts his main trust in a world that has been proven by time and circumstance and then proceeds to incorporate new technologies with an appropriate emotional distance and healthy amount of doubt in new and shiny things coming in from afar.

    I am sure that today the poet, Prešern, wouldn’t be exhibiting any of the welcoming sentiment (the insightful man that he was) towards the arrival of this latest technological novelty, the digital prison, promising heaven on Earth while “cyber-netting” (bullying) us all into eternal hell. If I try to sing on poet’s behalf, then I would say: “Honey, the digital mycelium is mushrooming on us from beneath our feet with hyper-speeds and there is nowhere to hide from it. It will permanently chain-anchor us where it finds us (ankh on a chain symbolizing eternal anchored life by a digital machine) and keep us there no matter what we do, no matter how far we try to run in any direction. Even birds can’t help themselves being tethered by it, to it.”

    Now I will return to watching the video about two smart-con artists. This Chainlink also just can’t evade using a (blue) hexagon as a logo. While Borg running Kubernetes (K8s) is using a (blue) heptagon. I would guess they are higher on the ladder of importance, they are controlling (sailboat wheel) all the seven seas after all. https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/3/39/Kubernetes_logo_without_workmark.svg/1200px-Kubernetes_logo_without_workmark.svg.png

    Might be commenting some more, or … not. Lets see.

  3. kocotube01 začasni says:

    I am sorry if I clutter this comment section, but, hearing you two (Alison and Jason) talking about financial system, couldn’t resist re-launching this idea of mine for a true global financial reset (resetting at the same time economy aspect) in a form of What if (ridiculous) story.

    What if ?… story…or Archy* by Everyone (not just Family-Banking-Intelligence LLC) and An-Archy by Anyone …

    For a while now I am toying with this idea that ties to the fact that current economic model is like a Monopoly game. Few (or only one) win the game and all the others loose. Since I’ve only recognized this fact – as if it was a product of societal development, and not trying to correct it, – I will now try to develop a simple replacement, an idea for the future of the world economics.
    World of free market that would be as fruitful for the people as it could be. And would recognize all the effort and sacrifice of the previous generations. Lets reset the “game” then, Really Reset it, not just tweak the margins. Lets evaluate all that mankind (infrastructure, hardware and knowledge) has accumulated so far. How much is its global worth? Could everyone who is alive right now be a millionaire (in whichever currency)?
    Lets say we live 100 years and a year has 10 months. That is 1000 months in one’s life. If every person at birth is to be given a million (a new million is created by the birth of a child), he/she would have on average 1000 units of that currency per month to spend until death. At death that million would be taken out from circulation (individualized money that has your number on it).
    Question arises: Is this reset good for an individual? Those without the land would have to buy their food. But now the farmers could be in position of independent price forming (getting paid properly for their labor). And with extra money they could directly finance robotics developers who would create robots that would by their design benefit farmers directly (not abominations like BostonDynamics “hyenas”). And that would earn those robot developers extra money for food and leisure … and … the cycle begins.
    … Those who work manually and/or with their brains would accumulate money that could then be invested into new projects of their choosing or leisure. And those who don’t work and have no innovative ideas would loose money. If you invest wisely, disperse in many benefiting inventions (and not spend all on food, housing and clothes), you get rewarded with the influx from products that were developed and sold as a consequence of your investments.
    But remember: whatever you do with your money, wherever that million of yours ends up, all your money will be erased once you die. So … there is no danger of inflation, there are no central banks needed, there are no banks at all, since there is no interests possible, there are no money lenders, there is no Ministry of Finances that regulates currency flows and no taxation from the state, since there is no money related bureaucracy. Only infrastructure needed is ATM like globally connected grid, where you pay-in for your expenses or you are payed-out for your services. The People are free to invest in what they consider worth or necessary investing in and in amounts they judge appropriate by their discretion.
    And this “monopoly game” has its Objective that is different from to-days economic farce: Aim is not to win by grabbing and holding all the currency in circulation (with few winners, or only one) and thus shorting/ending the game, but quite the opposite, the aim is to play the game as long as you can (the game never ends) while intellectually and emotionally enjoying it.
    Of course this idea is “just plainly ridiculous” at first glance. And at second. But what if…?

    There couldn’t be more and more currency in circulation. And no arbitrary printing of currency possible by,/and for the benefit of, the most powerful global actors. There would be as many millions in circulation as there are living people. Once I’ve died, all the currency with “my name on it” (my serial number) becomes worthless and is taken out of the circulation.
    Essentially one would start with a million, gradually releasing it into the circulation and died taking one’s million out completely. During certain individual’s life time his/hers money would disperse so that those holding small amounts of that individual’s currency at the time of his(hers death wouldn’t “suffer” much of a loss.
    An Individual would be encouraged, from the start, not to overindulge – 1000 currency point per month don’t make you infinitely rich – and to live by the motto of ‘creating new quality for the future that benefits all’ (action that attracts outside investment). Also there would be no need for the State to exist in such a megalomaniac form of bureaucratic regulatory capacity (with standing armies and Intelligence apparatus) that too few individuals would be willing to financially support.
    And the problem of intellectual property would fall away also, if there would be none. All access to knowledge would be open. When you create a new code for the worker robots to operate in a new and better way, you get paid by the investors/investments and later by the sales of the product. One time operation, without any long turn royalties. If someone is prepared to use your already realized idea and works on its further development, that someone gets financially rewarded (by new investments) for that particular improvement or for work on replicating that product (sales) and has no extra protections. Development would be driven by the real needs of the real people (investors and/or buyers) and all the needles product would be financially discouraged (no consumerism mentality).
    The People would be initially forced to invest into sectors that satisfy their basic needs and make them more price affordable (food, housing, clothes…) and only then would begin investing in the life enhancing/indulging lifestyles. By giving everyone a million at the start of their lives would ensure ‘fair play starting position’ for everyone and destroy any need for ‘vertical social mobility’ and ‘horizontal exclusivity’ cartel associations.
    Maybe one additional feature of such individualized currency (“a million with your number on it”) would be possibility of tracking the future use and movement of your money around the world. To see what your money is doing out in the real world is very “regulatory” on its own.
    As I’ve said, a very bizarre idea on the first glance and second, ….but what if…?

    If there are to be 10 billion people on Earth by 2050`s (you can watch any of Hans Rosling`s presentation of world statistic), then all the currency in circulation would amount to 10 quadrillion. That amount would be more or less constant, since the global population’s exponential growth of 18th-20th centuries has already essentially leveled at future constant number of 10 billion people living on the planet. A million more ore less wouldn’t change anything. Those 10 quadrillions wouldn’t just ensure stability, they would also release all the creativity held back in people (like water behind a dam) by our current monetary system, designed and serving the international elite families, system that is based on artificial scarcity for majority of people.
    What really creates inflation are the Central banks, in collusion with the governments, arbitrary creating new currency by new loans (private and to governments) in amounts of new trillions. And then the interests spawning from the indebted currency itself. And all the financial derivatives and future’s gambling financial investments. That casino mentality would be all gone. Together with stocks. Money as currency backed by living individuals would be the only “stock” available for investing.
    John Doe’s million would be created only by his birth. No other reason for creating money would be allowed. So, if the population will have leveled at 10 billion people around 2050, then amount of money in circulation should be relatively constant.
    And then … THE questions, to be answered by every individual, present themselves:
    What kind of a future and what kind of a world would you want to live in? How will you act in order to be moving towards realization of your own vision of the future?
    After asking those questions, it is your individual “free choice to develop” that future with your currency’s influence. Money as a ‘Future Creating Tool’, a tool that is to-day reserved only for the “chosen” ones (the rich monopolists), who regularly reset the Monopoly-game system by creating financial crises and property/resources acquisition runs.
    Oh, if you are wondering what would become of today’s billionaires and trillionaires, Earl John Doe the XIV`s? …Well…they would still have a million of their own after this kind of global reset – a real reset and not this phony retype advertised as a reset by trillionaire Families of Banker Internationalists – just like all the others.

    This was my what if…EVERY MILLIONAIRE? story. If it doesn’t resonate with you, please, move on to others. Or add to it.
    P.S .: People who cherish freeness should run away from UBI – universal basic income – which is planned to be tied to your social credit score (priced “value”) and is meant to enslave us permanently and fully. If money is to be given unconditionally to everyone, than it must be printable and should come in one single chunk, not as monthly allowances.
    And people should also refuse the Block-Chain technology since it is The Tool for the ultimate and complete chaining, not just in the Money domain but in all aspects of social interacting.

    And also forgive my syntactic blunders and spelling errors.

    * by Archy I mean … an internalized ruling.
    Therefore under An-Archy I mean … without external rulers.

    • kocotube01 začasni says:

      I hear many of these gurus of digital future talking about self-emergent effects (like with conscious human mind emerging out of primate brain) that might arise from human/machine globally networked “entity”, but are forgetting that there can be no spontaneous emergence of new, never before seen, properties on a “higher level” of swarm-like connectedness if the process itself of developing these systems is planned and executed in a controlled manner. Self-emergence of any new and unexpected properties regarding developing human/machine society as a united global “entity” is only possible with a hands-off approach. You can not create and control conditions (the environment) under which swarming can take place and at the same time expect to find any novel emergent behavior Or said differently …if you control the environment, its constituents become stagnant. You can not unleash untapped human (and/or machine) potential globally, if you stifle interactions on the individual peer-to-peer level by securized micro-management that should bolster trust, but is actually preventing trust issue to be overcome (dynamically ameliorated in real time) and thus to get rid of paralyzing effects of mistrust. What they will get out of their meticulously designed human-machine global “entity” is going to give them more human inside a machine and more machine inside a human, but will fail in rewarding them with any new and self-emergent human and/or machine societal development. Or maybe I am wrong and they are already in possession of expertise paper that proves an self-emergent “entity” of networked interdependent agents is inevitable and will happen … on May 1st 2046, around 11:18am.

  4. Melinda Mills says:

    Yes Alison, trust your intuition!
    November is the beginning of movement of winter to the winter solstice, the peak of winter.
    At this time, we have the ability to let things disintegrate so that something new can
    form. During this movement towards chaos at the solstice, we need to let go of “planning and
    doing” and feed the cauldron with all the important bits that will spiral into a new creation or direction as we move out of winter after the solstice.

    By the way, when you do come to California, we have a cabin in the woods north of the Bay Area
    where you and Jason are welcome to rest among the trees! Also we would love to gift you both for all of your hard work with acupuncture or massage at our Birdsong Clinic and some special tea or living wine at our Shindig lounge.

  5. Roderick says:

    Amazing talk, Alison and Cliff. I always learn something new.
    By the way, I’ve been wondering how it’s possible to practically combine the prerequisites of distributed cognition and decentralization in general for the emergence of the Global Brain with the “acceleration” that people like Francis Heylighen think is necessary to “inmanentize the eschaton” of the Singularity, and then, while exploring Shima Beigi’s Google Scholar Page I stumbled upon the concept of “guided self-organization” in the title of one of her co-authored papers. But what is self-organization?
    “In general, Guided Self-Organisation attempts to reconcile two seemingly opposing forces: one is guiding a self-organising system into a better structured shape and/or functionality, while the other is diversifying the options in an entropic exploration within the available search space. At first glance, these two alternatives may even appear irreconcilable in principle, given an apparent contradiction between the concepts of guidance (implying control) and self-organisation (implying autonomy). However, the resolution of this paradox capitalises on the distinction between the concepts of “control” and “constraint”: rather than trying to precisely control a transition towards the desirable outcomes, one puts in place some constraints on the system dynamics to mediate behaviors and interactions.” http://www.guided-self.org/

    “Designers of Self-organizing Systems”

    • kocotube01 začasni says:

      Found this book by Mikhail Prokopenko from 2014, titled “Guided Self-Organization: Inception”- Here is a direct pdf link:

      And an article “Mind outside Brain: a radically non-dualist foundation for distributed cognition” by Francis Heylighen and Shima Beigi here:

      And this article led me (including a minor Yuri Milner detour) to a site called “Principia Cybernetica Web” – http://pespmc1.vub.ac.be/ – where I was exposed to a “Metasystem Transition Theory (MSTT)” claiming that evolutionary system goes trough a process of Metasystem Transition which “results in a higher level of control while increasing the overall freedom and adaptivity of the system.”.

      And then to “The Global Brain Institute” – https://globalbraininstitute.org/ – where they served me this:

      “Basic assumptions

      We see people, machines and software systems as agents that communicate via a complex network of communication links. Problems, observations, or opportunities define challenges that may stimulate these agents to act.

      Challenges that cannot be fully resolved by a single agent are normally propagated to one or more other agents, along the links in the network. These agents contribute their own expertise to resolving the challenge. If necessary, they propagate the challenge further, until it is fully resolved. Thus, the skills of the different agents are pooled into a collective intelligence much more powerful than the intelligence of its individual members.

      The propagation of challenges across the global network is a complex, self-organizing process, similar to the “spreading activation” that characterizes thinking in the human brain. This process will typically change the network by reinforcing useful links, while weakening less useful ones. Thus, the network learns and adapts to new challenges, becoming ever more intelligent.”.

      Stimulated agent OUT.

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