There are advantages and disadvantages to the 60 minute session slots that they have now at Lotusphere, as opposed to the old 75 minute slots, but one advantage is that they allow scheduling a less rushed lunch time, and today I had the pleasure of sharing more than an hour with John Vaughan at lunch today. I've met him several times before, of course, but we never really talked one-on-one to the point where we could really get to know one another. I've known all along, from reading his blog, that John has some very cool ideas in his head -- spanning the real and metaphysical realms -- and he's such an easygoing guy that he just drew me in and we connected, shared thoughts about our kids, about life, about physics, and this and that. I'm not the aspiring novelist that John is, but we discovered a bunch of common interests and common trains of thought. I have to admit that much of it was probably out there in John's blog for me to pick up on, but there's always a shortage of time when reading blogs; and my own thoughts about such matters are not so much out there on my blog for him or anyone else to pick up on. In the midst of the conversation, I realized that a book I read many years ago, would probably be of interest to John and I promised to get him the URL. It's The Emperor's New Mind by Roger Penrose. It's a book that looks at matters of consciousness, intelligence and artificial intelligence through the eyes of a physicist. It's not an easy read, as it covers things like the mathematics of Turing machines, quantum physics, and entropy in considerable detail along the way toward it's conclusions about what goes on in the human mind -- and Penrose doesn't dumb down the math any more than he has to. Based on the breadth and depth of what we talked about, I'm quite sure that John will like this book, and you may too.
1. Steve Castledine01/25/2006 04:53:47 PM
Im so jealous of the lotusphere thing this year, it sounds amazing thanks to the many blogs reporting on it. One of the things I must do in my life - lunch with jonvon - such a cool guy!
2. jonvon01/27/2006 11:10:30 AM
hey rich! man i have so much to catch up on!! and so much to blog... i was going to blog about the conversation we had as well. it was one of the highlights of the entire week for me.
thanks for the link to the book, i am definitely going to get it.
steve - man, we missed you too brother. maybe next year! (one can hope!)