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Contests Home

Current Essay Contest


Contest Partners: Fetzer Franklin Fund, and The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation

Previous Contests

Undecidability, Uncomputability, and Unpredictability Essay Contest
December 24, 2019 - April 24, 2020
Contest Partners: Fetzer Franklin Fund, and The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation
read/discusswinners

What Is “Fundamental”
October 28, 2017 to January 22, 2018
Sponsored by the Fetzer Franklin Fund and The Peter & Patricia Gruber Foundation
read/discusswinners

Wandering Towards a Goal
How can mindless mathematical laws give rise to aims and intention?
December 2, 2016 to March 3, 2017
Contest Partner: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Fund.
read/discusswinners

Trick or Truth: The Mysterious Connection Between Physics and Mathematics
Contest Partners: Nanotronics Imaging, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, and The John Templeton Foundation
Media Partner: Scientific American

read/discusswinners

How Should Humanity Steer the Future?
January 9, 2014 - August 31, 2014
Contest Partners: Jaan Tallinn, The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, The John Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American
read/discusswinners

It From Bit or Bit From It
March 25 - June 28, 2013
Contest Partners: The Gruber Foundation, J. Templeton Foundation, and Scientific American
read/discusswinners

Questioning the Foundations
Which of Our Basic Physical Assumptions Are Wrong?
May 24 - August 31, 2012
Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation, SubMeta, and Scientific American
read/discusswinners

Is Reality Digital or Analog?
November 2010 - February 2011
Contest Partners: The Peter and Patricia Gruber Foundation and Scientific American
read/discusswinners

What's Ultimately Possible in Physics?
May - October 2009
Contest Partners: Astrid and Bruce McWilliams
read/discusswinners

The Nature of Time
August - December 2008
read/discusswinners

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RECENT POSTS IN THIS TOPIC

Jeffrey Schmitz: on 5/19/20 at 3:32am UTC, wrote Jim, If you had a formula for the current Dow, etc. (you would be very...

James Arnold: on 5/19/20 at 1:40am UTC, wrote Jeff, your essay is both delightful and playfully meaningless. I have one...

Jeffrey Schmitz: on 5/18/20 at 15:48pm UTC, wrote Hi George, Thank you for the wonderful review and the poem that made me...

George Gantz: on 5/18/20 at 11:09am UTC, wrote Hi Jeff - Thanks for a lovely essay - lyrical and funny. I was also moved...

Jeffrey Schmitz: on 5/12/20 at 13:45pm UTC, wrote Jim, I don't rate until I read a few essays. Your rating does not depend...

James Hoover: on 5/12/20 at 6:17am UTC, wrote Jeffrey, Hope you haven't rated me yet. I've been under a bombing attack....

Jeffrey Schmitz: on 5/10/20 at 20:16pm UTC, wrote Jim, Thank you. Computer science, English and Economics - you do have a...

James Hoover: on 5/10/20 at 19:41pm UTC, wrote Jeff, At my age, I doubt if you know what an old and stiff back is, but I...


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FQXi FORUM
September 21, 2021

CATEGORY: Undecidability, Uncomputability, and Unpredictability Essay Contest (2019-2020) [back]
TOPIC: Why your robot is just not that into you by Jeffrey Michael Schmitz [refresh]
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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz wrote on Apr. 24, 2020 @ 13:32 GMT
Essay Abstract

The common thread between quantum mechanics, the nature of intelligence, meta-math, used car salesmen and emotionally distant robots is used to help cope with humanity’s Oedipal desire to both eliminate and embrace the chaotic elements that lead to our existence.

Author Bio

Jeff Schmitz is an adjunct instructor of Physics, Astronomy, Physical Science and Math at several colleges in and around Chicago. He received his Masters of Physics from the University of Tennessee.

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Note: This Essay PDF was replaced on 2020-04-24 21:17:47 UTC.

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz wrote on Apr. 24, 2020 @ 21:17 GMT
Jeffrey Schmitz re-uploaded the file Schmitz_Why_your_robot.pdf for the essay entitled "Why your robot is just not that into you" on 2020-04-24 21:17:47 UTC.

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post approved


Peter Jackson wrote on May. 6, 2020 @ 14:35 GMT
Jeff,

Thanks for your nice words on mine. I also found yours quite brilliant, as well as the most entertaining read of the contest so far. Quite brightened up my day, and an excellent original and perceptive take on the issues.

I see it's been trolled with a least one 1 score, I think mines's just has it's 5th!! A well earned 10 from me should recover it a bit.

Very nicely done

Peter

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on May. 6, 2020 @ 14:48 GMT
Peter,

Thank you.

I don't know if any of my essays got a 10 before. Glad you enjoyed it.

Jeff

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James Lee Hoover wrote on May. 10, 2020 @ 19:41 GMT
Jeff,

At my age, I doubt if you know what an old and stiff back is, but I value your personal narrative mixed with scientific wisdom and knowledge. It grabs the reader, one of the goals of this contest. Another is clearly written, which it is. I know the difficulties and rewards of adjunct teaching. I did it part time in computer science decades ago and in English and Economics, so I can appreciate what you're doing. We do exist in the creative wrong answers arising from discoveries in all endeavors but the dogged pursuit of knowledge may eventually help us unravel the truths.Mine is your 4th rating for an essay well above average. And thanks for your kind words about my essay.

Jim Hoover

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on May. 10, 2020 @ 20:16 GMT
Jim,

Thank you.

Computer science, English and Economics - you do have a broad background and I can understand how you can write those wonderful broad ranging essays.

For me the journey to the truth (whatever "truth" is) is more important than the endpoint.

Jeff

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James Lee Hoover wrote on May. 12, 2020 @ 06:17 GMT
Jeffrey,

Hope you haven't rated me yet. I've been under a bombing attack. I'm trying to wrap up as the deadline approaches: https://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/3396

Jim Hoover.

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on May. 12, 2020 @ 13:45 GMT
Jim,

I don't rate until I read a few essays. Your rating does not depend on how you rate me.

Jeff

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George Gantz wrote on May. 18, 2020 @ 11:09 GMT
Hi Jeff - Thanks for a lovely essay - lyrical and funny. I was also moved - a rare response to an FQXi essay. This was a powerful statement - "Random, the meta-function that is always outside of any ordered system, will work in a pinch." I personally believe that is NOT the best choice (something I discuss in detail in my 2016 FQXi detail - The How and The Why of Emergence and Intention (https://fqxi.org/community/forum/topic/2840 ) There is considerable evidence that a selection process (outside the system) is at work and we make of it what we choose.

Best - George Gantz

FYI: Here's a touching verse form the Rubaiyat - the very last one.

CI. And when like her, oh Saki, you shall pass

Among the Guests Star-scatter'd on the Grass,

And in your joyous errand reach the spot

Where I made One--turn down an empty Glass!

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on May. 18, 2020 @ 15:48 GMT
Hi George,

Thank you for the wonderful review and the poem that made me long for a time and place I never knew.

Random is never the best choice, but it can make a choice. Evolution is the golden example of how not to make decisions, but it worked out in the long run.

All the best,

Jeff

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James Arnold replied on May. 19, 2020 @ 01:40 GMT
Jeff, your essay is both delightful and playfully meaningless.

I have one issue: You wrote “true random number could not be produced by a mathematical function”

Add the last 2 digits of the current Dow, Nasdac, and S&P, divide by the day of the month, and then by pi, multiply by the miliseconds elapsed in the current day, add the number of days since 1/1/2000, drop any numbers before the decimal point, drop the decimal point and any leading zeroes, and you have a true random number – because randomness is just the product of a confluence of more-or-less independent factors. Randomness isn’t un-precipitated – there is no reason to think that anything that is un-precipitated can even happen.



But! My own experience tells me my behavior is partly random (partly precipitated), but fundamentally cipitated, i.e., spontaneous, creative, and inspired by value. Put those together and you have the capability of intelligence! And anyone who disagrees with this is simply deficient in cipitation. That's just unfortunate. And unremarkable.

Thank you for writing so cipitatingly. You are more than you may think!

Jim

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Author Jeffrey Michael Schmitz replied on May. 19, 2020 @ 03:32 GMT
Jim,

If you had a formula for the current Dow, etc. (you would be very rich) and would have something within the system and the number would not be random, but predictable. Since we do not currently have a flawless Dow formula the number is currently outside of the system and not a function.

Thank you for the review.

Jeff

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