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A Sourcebook for the Worldwide Discovery of a Creative Organic Universe
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Recent Additions: New and Updated Entries in the Past 60 Days
Displaying entries 61 through 74 of 74 found.


Pedia Sapiens: A Genesis Future on Earth and in the Heavens

Future > Old Earth

Haggstrom, Olle and Catherine Rhodes. Existential Risk to Humanity. Foresight. 21/1, 2019. In this Emerald Insight journal of future perspectives, Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden and Cambridge University scholars introduce a litany of very bad potential threats to Earth, people, and all living beings. Some papers are Facing Disaster: The Great Challenges Framework by Phil Torres, Long-Term Trajectories of Human Civilization by Seth Baum, et al (search) and Predicting Future AI Failures from Historic Examples by Roman Yampolsky. A nexus for such studies revolves somewhat around the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University (Google).

Future > New Earth

Packard, Norman, et al. Open-Ended Evolution and Open-Endedness. Artificial Life. 25/1, 2019. Veteran systems futurists NP, Mark Bedau, Alastair Channon, Takashi Ikegami, Steen Rasmussen, Kenneth Stanley, and Tim Taylor introduce a Current Research in Open-Ended Evolution special issue to scope out how this aware, intentional evolitionary co-creation can become a salutary, proactive, fruitful movement. By these lights and capabilities, it seems that phenomenal cosmic nature intends, and need us to proceed to carry forth. See, for example, Evolved Open-Endedness by Howard Pattee and Hiroki Sayama, Two Modes of Evolution: Optimization and Expansion by Steen Rasmussen and Paolo Sibani, and Open-Ended Technological Innovation by Mark Bedau, et al. Some issue entries, along with other papers such as Conditions for Major Transitions in Biological and Cultural Evolution by Peter Turney, are available in full on the website for the 2018 conference (Google) noted in the Abstract.

Nature's spectacular inventiveness, reflected in the enormous diversity of form and function displayed by the biosphere, is a feature of life that distinguishes living most strongly from nonliving. It is, therefore, not surprising that this aspect of life should become a central focus of artificial life. We have known since Darwin that the diversity is produced dynamically, through the process of evolution; this has led life's creative productivity to be called Open-Ended Evolution (OEE) in the field. This article introduces the first of two special issues on current research on OEE and on the more general concept of open-endedness. Most of the papers presented in these special issues are elaborations of work presented at the Third Workshop on Open-Ended Evolution, held in Tokyo as part of the 2018 Conference on Artificial Life. (Abstract)

Future > New Earth > Mind Over Matter

Gromski, Piotr, et al. How to Explore Chemical Space Using Algorithms and Automation. Nature Reviews Chemistry. 3/119, 2019. University of Glasgow computational chemists in coauthor Leroy Cronin’s lab explore the frontiers of novel material discovery, composition and enhanced utility.

Although extending the reactivity of a given class of molecules is relatively straightforward, the discovery of genuinely new reactivity and the molecules that result is a more challenging problem. Here, we describe how searching chemical space using automation and algorithms improves the probability of discovery. The former enables routine chemical tasks to be performed more quickly and consistently, while the latter uses algorithms to facilitate the searching of chemical knowledge databases. In order to find new chemical laws, we must seek to question current assumptions and biases. Accomplishing that involves algorithms to perform searches, and more general machine learning to predict the chemistry under investigation. (Abstract excerpt)

Future > New Earth > Mind Over Matter

Inosov, Dmytro. Quantum Magnetism in Minerals. Advances in Physics. 68/1, 2019. A Ukrainian solid state physicist presently at the Technical University of Dresden posts a 115 page, 750 reference, survey of these frontier realizations that quantum phenomena and condensed matter can be seamlessly unified. It’s sections go from Coupled spin dimers and Kagone systems to Quasi-2D lattices and Molecular magnets. As violent strife continues to rage across eastern Europe, human acumen can yet be able to learn all about and take over cosmic material creation, going forward.

The discovery of magnetism by the ancient Greeks was enabled by the natural occurrence of lodestone. Nowadays, minerals continue to inspire the search for novel magnetic materials with quantum-critical behavior or exotic ground states such as spin liquids. The recent interest in magnetic frustration and quantum magnetism was encouraged by crystalline structures of minerals realizing pyrochlore, kagome, or triangular arrangements of magnetic ions. In some cases, their structures are too complex to be synthesized artificially in a chemistry lab, especially in single-crystalline form, with unusual magnetic properties. The present review attempts to embrace this quickly emerging interdisciplinary field that bridges mineralogy with low-temperature condensed-matter physics and quantum chemistry. (Abstract excerpt)

Future > New Earth > Mind Over Matter

Leal, Wilmer and Guillermo Restrepo. Formal Structure of Periodic Systems of Elements. Proceedings of the Royal Society A. Online April 3, 2019. Some century and a half after Dmitri Mendeleev (1834-1907) initially noticed how atomic elements could be arrayed into a repetitive manner, MPI Mathematics in the Sciences informatic theorists are able to discern a “similarity order” which spreads across the full table as a node and link pattern. The visual layout then seems to suggest a natural design and dynamics which we peoples, as intended, are just now discovering. See also Machine Learning Material Properties from the Periodic Table using Convolutional Neural Networks (Xiaolong Zheng, et al 2018 herein) for another version of late 2010s insights.

For more than 150 years, the structure of the periodic system of the chemical elements has intensively motivated research in different areas of chemistry and physics. However, there is still no unified picture of what a periodic system is. Herein, based on the relations of order and similarity, we report a formal mathematical structure for the periodic system, which corresponds to an ordered hypergraph. It is shown that the current periodic system of chemical elements is an instance of the general structure. The definition is used to devise a tailored periodic system of polarizability of single covalent bonds, where order relationships are quantified within subsets of similar bonds and among these classes. The generalized periodic system allows envisioning periodic systems in other disciplines of science and humanities. (Abstract)

Future > New Earth > Mind Over Matter

Zheng, Xiaolong, et al. Machine Learning Material Properties from the Periodic Table using Convolutional Neural Networks. Chemical Science. 9/8426, 2018. In this Royal Society of Chemistry journal, Hangzhou Dianzi University and Northwest University, Xi'an computational chemists achieve a novel application of this multiplex connective method by which to better study the atomic elements in the 21st century.

In recent years, convolutional neural networks (CNNs) have achieved great success in image recognition with powerful feature extraction ability. Here we show that CNNs can learn the inner structure and chemical information in the periodic table. Using the periodic table as representation, and full-Heusler compounds in the Open Quantum Materials Database (OQMD) as training and test samples, a multi-task CNN was trained to output the lattice parameter and enthalpy of formation. Our results indicate that the two-dimensional inner structure of the periodic table was learned by the CNN as useful chemical information. (Abstract excerpt)

Future > New Earth > second genesis

Cussat-Blanc, Sylvain, et al. Artificial Gene Regulatory Networks. Artificial Life. 24/4, 2018. Computational biologists S C-B, University of Toulouse, Kyle Harrington, University of Idaho, and Walter Banzhaf, Michigan State University (search) review past theories, present appreciations and future utilities of this genomic feature which dynamically links diverse nucleotides into equally real, functional systems. Its wide range covers Gene Regulation in Nature, GRNs in Cellular Physiology, Development, Evolution, and Epigenetics, GRN Internal Dynamics, and onto Artificial GRNs in Embryogenesis, braced by some 150 references. In regard, a broad train is taken from earlier biomolecular components to their 21st century integrative connections. In the later 2010s going forward, new ventures can be scoped out with palliative and procreative horizons.

In nature, gene regulatory networks are a key mediator between the information stored in the DNA of living organisms (their genotype) and the structural and behavioral expression this finds in their bodies, surviving in the world (their phenotype). They integrate environmental signals, steer development, buffer stochasticity, and allow evolution to proceed. In engineering, modeling and implementations of artificial gene regulatory networks have been an expanding field of research and development over the past few decades. This review discusses the concept of gene regulation, describes the current state of the art in gene regulatory networks, including modeling and simulation, and reviews their use in artificial evolutionary settings. We provide evidence for the benefits of this concept in natural and the engineering domains. (Abstract)

In summary, gene regulation has emerged as a key player in translating the information provided by an organism's inherited DNA into the structure (via growth and development) and behavior of that organism. Time scales range from seconds (in the case of the regulation of metabolism in neurons to thousands of years (in the case of evolutionary processes). Gene regulatory networks have been compared to the compilers of computer languages that translate code into behavior of the underlying machine. However, there is much more to the computational modeling of gene regulation, and this brings us to our next topic. (301)

Possibilities opened by gene regulatory networks are numerous. Whereas biologists have made significant progress in understanding the inner mechanisms of gene regulation in living systems, much remains to be discovered and understood. These mechanisms produce extremely complex behaviors in living organisms, from embryogenesis to the regulation of everyday life. Computer science and more specifically artificial intelligence will benefit from these discoveries and, with gene regulatory networks, could produce more intelligent behaviors for artificial agents in the near future. (321)

Future > New Earth > second genesis

Srinvasarao, Mohan, et al. Biologically Inspired Far-from-Equilibrium Materials. MRS Bulletin. 44/2, 2019. In this international Materials Research Society main publication, systems chemists MS, Georgia Tech, Germano Iannacchione, Worcester PolyTech, and Atad Parikh, UC Davis introduce a special issue with this title. What is notable today is a fertile integration and avail of these life-like, thermodynamic energies and activities into this older inorganic, metallurgical field. See also herein, Bioinspired Nonequilibrium Search for Novel Materials by Arvind Murugan and Heinrich Jaeger, and Nature’s Functional Nanomaterials by Bodo Wilts, et al.

Traditional approaches to materials synthesis have largely relied on uniform, equilibrated phases leading to static “condensed-matter” structures. Departures from these modes of materials design are pervasive in biology. From the folding of proteins to the reorganization of self-regulating cytoskeletal networks, biological materials reflect a major shift in emphasis from equilibrium thermodynamics to out-of-equilibrium regimes. Here, highly structured dynamical states that are out of equilibrium facilitate the creation of new materials capable of performing life-like functions such as complex and cooperative processes, self-replication, and self-repair, ultimately biological principles of spatiotemporal modes of self-assembly. (Srinvasarao Abstract excerpts)

Searching for materials with improved or novel properties involves an iterative process to successively narrow the gap between some initial starting point and the desired design target. This can be viewed as an optimization problem in a high-dimensional space, often with dozens of material parameters that need to be tuned. To tackle this, the evolutionary process in biology has been a source of inspiration for effective search algorithms. Here, we go beyond black box algorithms and take a broader view of computational evolution strategies. We discuss recent strategies that exploit knowledge about the material configuration statistics and highlight advantages by way of time-varying environments. Throughout, we emphasize that the search strategies themselves can be viewed as a nonequilibrium dynamical process in design space. (Murugan Abstract)

Future > New Earth > Ecovillages

Wilson, David Sloan. This View of Life: Completing the Darwinian Revolution. New York: Pantheon, 2019. This latest work by the SUNY Binghamton University biological anthropologist is extensively reviewed in Anthropo Opus. A prime recommendation for a better future is a wide spread turn to ecovillage communities.

Future > New Earth > democracy

Bokanyi, Eszter, et al. Universal Scaling Laws in Metro Area Election Results. PLoS One. February 28, 2018. Eotvos Lorand University, Budapest and Harvard Medical School systems theorists including Gabor Vattay identify common underlying regularities even for such vicarious social activities. As so many papers across each area of life and mind similarly attest, a grand conclusion is becoming evident. For all this occur, there must exist a separate, independent mathematical domain which impresses and exemplifies itself in kind. In the late 2010s, here is an epochal discovery of a universe to human, ecosmos to culture, genotype and phenotype natural genesis. See also Scaling in Words in Twitter by this team at arXiv:1903.04329.

We explain the anomaly of election results between large cities and rural areas in terms of urban scaling in the 1948–2016 US elections and in the 2016 EU referendum of the UK. The scaling curves are all universal and depend on a single parameter only, and one of the parties always shows superlinear scaling and drives the process, while the sublinear exponent of the other party is merely the consequence of probability conservation. Based on the recently developed model of urban scaling, we give a microscopic model of voter behavior in which we replace diversity characterizing humans in creative aspects with social diversity and tolerance. The model can also predict new political developments such as the fragmentation of the left and the immigration paradox. (Abstract)

Future > Self-Selection

Holmes, Bob. The Goldilocks Planet. New Scientist. March 23, 2019. A science writer makes a case that the presence of a Gaian self-maintaining biosphere should be seen as another major reason why this Earth is uniquely viable in the cosmos. Three properties are here cited that help this to happen – redundancy, diversity, and modularity – along with niche construction, group selection, and more.

As far as we know, Earth is a one-off: there is no population of competing, reproducing planets for natural selection to choose between to form the next generation. And yet, like a superorganism honed by evolution, Earth seems to self-regulate in ways that are essential for life. Oxygen levels have remained relatively constant for hundreds of millions of years, as has the availability of key building blocks of life such as carbon, nitrogen and phosphorus. Crucially, Earth’s surface temperature has remained with the narrow range that allows liquid water to exist. (35)

Future > Self-Selection

Tobin, John, et al. Astro2020 Science White Paper: The Formation and Evolution of Multiple Star Systems. arXiv:1904.08442. A project proposal by 16 astronomers from across the USA to study these stellar duplexes because “nearly half of Solar-type stars are have been found to lie in binary or higher-order multiple systems.” An inference, one might add, is that such common pairing would be another obstacle for a long-term habitability.

Future > Self-Selection

Waltham, David. Star Masses and Star-Planet Distances for Earth-like Habitability. Astrobiology. 17/1, 2017. The Royal Holloway University of London exoplanet researcher and author of Lucky Planet: Why Earth is Exceptional (2014) discusses current studies about how conducive stellar types and solar systems may or may not be conducive for life to originate, inhabit and evolve.

Future > Green Galaxy

Dosovic, Vladimir, et al. Advanced Aspects of the Galactic Habitability. arXiv:1904.01062. In a paper to appear in Astronomy & Astrophysics, University of Belgrade astronomers VD, Branislav Vukotic and Milan Cirkovic continue to advance technical evaluations of how relatively conducive for life, organisms and persons this Milky Way galaxy might be. To do so, a fine line is drawn between colonization and catastrophe with regard to potential abilities to spread an interstellar civilization or succumb to external or internal disasters. And again it is amazing that a fledgling global prodigy, in this case from a recent war zone, can yet commence such quantifications of celestial frontiers.

Astrobiological evolution of the Milky Way has emerged as one of the key research topics in recent years. In order to build precise, quantitative models of the Galactic habitability, we need to account for two opposing tendencies of life and intelligence in the most general sense: the tendency to spread to all available ecological niches and the tendency to succumb to various types of existential catastrophes. These evolutionary tendencies are being engaged in fields such as ecology, macroevolution, risk analysis, and futures studies, while an astrobiological treatment has been lacking so far. Our aim is to investigate the dynamics of opposed processes of expansion and extinction of life in the Galaxy. While most of the examined parameter space shows very low habitability values, as expected, the remaining part has features that imply a reduction in the amount of fine-tuning to resolve the Fermi paradox. (Abstract excerpts)

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