1. On assembling Ikea Furniture.

    21 June 2014

    If you must assemble any significant quantity of Ikea furniture, do yourself a favor and ignore the tiny and disposable circular wrench and allen key they include in the packaging. Spend a few more dollars to get yourself one or more of the Fixya 17 piece toolkits. It doesn't look like much but the tools are more than sufficient to assemble any furniture that Ikea sells. At the very least you won't tear your hands and wrists to pieces trying to use those tiny wrenches to assemble anything you plan on using every day. You'll also get the job done …

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  2. Transhuman visions presentation.

    15 June 2014

    To everyone who attended the Global Existential Risks and Radical Futures Conferences yesterday, thank you. It was an honor and a privilege to meet with and speak to all of you.

    As promised, here are my slides in the form of an HTML5 presentation. They were authored in Markdown and run through Landslide to convert them into HTML5 slides.


    This work by The Doctor [412/724/301/703][ZS] is published under a Creative Commons By Attribution / Noncommercial / Share Alike v4.0 License.

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  3. Steps toward an open source microfacture shop and what could be the first recorded nanoparticle injury.

    28 May 2014

    A common criticism of 3D printers is that they're not a panacea. They can't do it all - a limitation shared by every tool, when you think about it - and because of that some vocal people claim they're worthless. You can't really convince anyone who's dead-set against being convinced, so let's move on to more interesting things. A problem being worked on right now is developing a set of technologies and workflow for microfacture - extremely small scale automated manufacture, on the scale of a hackerspace or a home workshop. Most of the components exist right now, from 3D printers to lathes …

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  4. Duo-dimensional circuitry and nanosurgical devices.

    26 May 2014

    When we think of circuitry, people tend to think of one of two things: Either fairly large discrete components that will balance comfortably on the tip of your finger (image credit: Creatively Maladjusted), or slabs of plastic and ceramic encapsulating integrated circuits which are comprised of millions upon millions of components. At the time I write this article we can fabricate circuitry on a scale of about 14 nanometers and in about two years we'll be able to reliably build circuitry around 10 nanometers in size, which is significantly bigger than the atoms of the elements used in chip manufacture …

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  5. Notes from the Religion and Transhumanism conference, 10 May 2014

    24 May 2014

    A couple of weekends ago I attended one of the IEET's conferences in California on the topic of Religion and Transhumanism. While I was there I took notes during the speakers' presentations, and I promised some people that I'd put them online at my earliest convenience. Here they are, in the best order I can conceive of and with whatever links I can dig up to elucidate my somewhat cryptic chickenscratch. Please note that I took notes on things I don't necessarily agree with, and that I advise you to follow some of the links before jumping to conclusions …

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  6. 3D printing circuitry.

    15 May 2014

    Arguably, even more important than bringing the price of 3D printers down to affordable levels is making them more practical. A commonly cited limitation of 3D printing right now is that they can only fab with one or two materials and can't really reproduce their own circuitry. They're both fair points, I can't argue with them. I can, however, point doubters in the direction of the Rabbit Pronto, a new print head for RepRap-derived 3D printers that is capable of fabbing functional electronic circuitry in addition to structural plastic. The Rabbit Pronto incorporates a 10cc syringe that can be …

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  7. Hearing loss restored through gene therapy, app-controlled hearing aids, and synthetic biology takes off.

    12 May 2014

    Once upon a time, prosthetic augmentation of a failing sense of hearing took the form of devices the size of a paperback book hung around one's neck and smallish headphones pumping amplified sound into the wearer's ears. As technology progressed and the sizes of components shrank to sub-surface mount form factors (for illustration please note the sizes of the 603 and 402 components) hearing aids shrank in size until they could be custom molded to fit snugly into one's ear canal. All of the benefit with very little of the mass or weight. Hand in hand with the miniaturization …

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  8. Regeneration of living tissue in situ and a surprising observation in antisenescence.

    07 May 2014

    Ordinarily if something happens that causes a chunk of your body to be removed (like, say, a shark bite) there isn't a whole lot that can be done to fill it back in. Scar tissue will form over the wound and skin will eventually cover over it, but that doesn't cause lost muscle and bone to come back. It's kind of scary, when you think about it - what's lost is lost. But that may not be the caes for much longer. A research team active in the field of regenerative medicine at the McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine at the …

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  9. Grains of Sand: 25 Years of the Sandman

    06 May 2014

    One of the things that Lyssa and I bonded over early in our relationship were the works of Neil Gaiman, in particular the graphic novel which spanned seven years and seventy-five issues called Sandman. It was considered the flagship series of DC's Vertigo imprint and has a community of fans around the world for whom these stories are very important indeed even to this day. Earlier this year the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco hosted an exhibit (which was so popular they held it over) called Grains of Sand: 25 Years of the Sandman. So of course, when Lyssa …

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