Questions are encouraged and should be based on the content of the Phrenicea website.

Halil writes:
I am doing research on logos that use the image of the eye to develop a corporate identity. I noticed that your website is using the eye logo, so I hope I will be able to get more information on it. For instance, why was the eye chosen, the color, the design, etc. Thank you for your cooperation.

Phrenicea replies:
Thank you for your interest.

The Phrenicea website is a scenario of the future, admittedly a bit "over the top" in terms of feasibility, at least from today's perspective. A scenario can be said to paint a picture or elicit a vision in the mind. Many believe the eye is a window to the mind, and it can also represent looking out towards the future. So here the image attempts to represent a gateway, looking in and boldly looking out.

The color chosen was aesthetic only. It was decided that the word "Phrenicea" looked best in a shade of blue, so the image reflected that scheme.

Good luck with your work!

Max writes:
Krill and Plankton as Polynutriment? Are you sure?

While reading through your website, I found it rather interesting, but I also found something else. About the creation of this Polynutriment, the food that is to be a "custard-like porridge" and will take care of our food needs:

You say it is to be made of krill and plankton. However, while reading an article (which may or may not be true) I found that, as the world's population is growing, we no longer have so much food as to suffice for everyone's appetite (have we ever?). Consequently, we have been scouring the ocean for krill. You may well know that whales eat krill and plankton, and as we eradicate their food supply, they will become extinct. "By reaping the smallest life forms, we may well eliminate the largest," is the ending quote of the article.

This suggests that there isn't enough krill and plankton to endlessly make the Polynutriment, unless we are to live in a state in which all life forms except for humans (and possibly bacterium) exist. So, the question (or rather, questions) is, are there even enough krill and plankton left to make an endless supply of Polynutriment?

Also, will we make animals extinct (namely, whales, so we can eat "their" krill)?

Thank you. Great site!

Phrenicea replies:
To answer your first question, "Are you sure?" The answer is... No! Of course no one can predict the future with any certainty. Our mission is to stimulate thought and discussion regarding the future and the present — and it appears we have been successful in your case!

We are very concerned about the potential near-term extinction of many ocean dwelling species due to the super-mechanized techniques that have been developed to snare ever-larger catches. Species at the lower rungs of the food chain are being targeted already, as traditional catches become smaller. Analogous concerns linger in regard to mechanized mega-farms on land.

The over-the-top Polynutriment scenario hopes to bring these concerns to light for visitors of the Phrenicea site.

Your comment regarding the availability of plankton and krill as a sole source to produce Polynutriment is a valid one.

Visit the Alfred Hitchcock inspired web page to learn of an additional source!

Dwayne writes:
What is the future of language? Will there be only one global language? If so, which one?

Phrenicea replies:
Excellent question! This warrants a dedicated page on the Phrenicea website.
Suffice to say now that communication via Phrenicea is more fundamental than the mechanics of our man-made languages.

Have you ever wondered how incredible it is that the many languages throughout the world can be interpreted to garner the meaning sufficiently enough to allow communication across dissimilar tongues? This is more than a coincidence. It is because our languages are fundamentally noetic and based on symbolic and metaphorical thinking — and this is the basis for Phrenicea's communication functions.

So, to answer your question directly: there will be one global language — the language of the mind.

Greg S. writes:
Great website.

Do you foresee a breakthrough in solving "the hard problem" of consciousness? The answer, assuming one is possible, might definitively settle the issue of whether computers could ever be truly aware. (At least for me, the Turing test is unsatisfying. Not being able to tell the difference doesn't mean the difference doesn't exist. The essence of the hard problem is accounting for qualia, a separate issue from externally observed behavior.)

Phrenicea replies:
Thank you for your thoughtful email.

As you are probably aware, the famous Francis Crick has devoted his post-DNA research years to this research. Our view is that consciousness is the result of the physical makeup of the brain — and not metaphysical. We expect that by the end of this century it will be understood. Whether we humans will be able to duplicate it with non-brain matter is what we're pessimistic about — happily by the way.

Lorraine M. asks:
In the future with Phrenicea, will we still exchange greeting cards and gifts during the holiday season?

Phrenicea replies:
The life and times that we take for granted today are considerably changed by midcentury.
Global warming becomes a worldwide concern beyond just talk, and drastic measures are taken to reduce manufacturing and transportation. Thus, life in general and the holiday season in particular become a bit less festive.
Just as email today is beginning to replace "snail mail," including greeting cards; mental greetings — facilitated by Phrenicea — eventually replace email. (The postal service does not survive at all, once it becomes prohibitively expensive to transport mail and packages.)

As for gifts, only physical goods that are needed to survive are manufactured, again to minimize the causes of global warming. What little is exchanged on very rare ITF (in the flesh) encounters are things from the 20th century. Stuff considered junk in its day. (Think twice before cleaning out that closet!)
So heartily enjoy the holidays now, as these may be considered the "good old days" to our contemporaries.

"Too embarrassed" asks:
Will "Who Wants to be a Millionaire" be around when Phrenicea is an integral part of our lives?

Phrenicea replies:
You must be one of the last fans left! Assuming this is a serious question(!), especially since the show has faded into obscurity several times — with and without Regis(!) — the answer will most definitely be "no," not even in reruns! With the brain's real-time access to Phrenicea, factual information will be available to everyone and anyone on demand and will not be considered knowledge as such. Facts will not have to be memorized or learned. Knowledge with Phrenicea will rely more on the judicial use of information. (In addition, no one could really ever replace Regis!)

Beth H. asks:
Will Phrenicea really take over our lives? (I hope not, it will be very sad.)

Phrenicea replies:
The mission of the Phrenicea website is to stimulate thought about the future, as well as help you to appreciate the present. Your question indicates that, at least for you, we have been successful. All should accept some responsibility for their fate to make our future acceptable to all.

John M. asks:
Will there be divorce in our future with Phrenicea?

Phrenicea replies:
The good news is no. The bad news is the reason the answer is no is because our concept of marriage will no longer exist and be part of worldwide culture. Since most relationships will not require physical proximity, it becomes very easy to switch to another companion. The term "divorce" does survive, although it merely means the break-up of a relationship. That "piece of paper" often referred to today, signifying a formal union, becomes moot when personal records are stored within a person's DNA. In addition, the more ephemeral nature of relationships eliminates communal property and the hassles of settlement.

John M. asks #2:
How and where is all the information stored in Phrenicea? Is it a large database? Is decision making programmed or controlled by people?

Phrenicea replies:
The exact location of Phrenicea is not generally known. Phrenicea's "database" is modeled after the human brain on an enormous scale. There is what resembles a "board of directors" which determines society's values, morals, and mores — which acts as Phrenicea's "conscious." These behavioral guidelines are effectively imbued to each individual utilizing their "brainerama," or artificial DNA.

Nick S. asks:
Will the tradition of a woman taking a man's surname survive when Phrenicea becomes part of our lives?

Phrenicea replies:
Incredibly, surnames (last names) will no longer be needed in our future with Phrenicea, although the midcentury seniors steadfastly cling to tradition. First names survive intact, but mainly for convenience. When interacting with another person via a Phrenicea engagement, a person's name is associated with their official ID, which is their DNA or genome (particularly their "snips"RealityCheck!   or SNPs, alleles or alternate versions of genes, and a subset of epigenetic marks). Phrenicea creates the link when you bring that individual to mind. First names are also used to be polite during those rare times when interacting ITF ("in the flesh").

Erica H. asks:
Will there be money in the future with Phrenicea?

Phrenicea replies:
All of the world's traditional forms of money — coin, currency as well as electronic funds — was universally supplanted with what's commonly called "soma-cash" or "tissue-issue." Almost everyone's financial assets and liabilities became part of his physical body, accessible to Phrenicea via engagement to effect transactions for the transfer of "DiNAs," the DNA-based unit of wealth.

M.M. writes:
I want to know your opinion regarding the potential of creating super-intelligent machines from gas and nitrous oxide and quantum memory chips as aids.

Secondly, tell me your opinion of "matrioshka" brains, large planetary-like intelligences.

Phrenicea replies:
Thank you for your email and interest in Phrenicea. Your excellent question presupposes a mutual understanding of what "intelligent" means in the context of "machines."

If you're implying that machines will eventually have intelligence analogous to the human brain, then we would argue with that — as that pessimism is the premise for the Phrenicea scenario. If by intelligence
Given the history of our species, it's questionable whether we'll survive while trying to maintain discipline over our increasing technological prowess.
you mean the super ability to process data in terms of storage, retrieval and logical manipulation, then we are optimistic that gaseous and solid quantum computing will indeed push the envelope beyond the ubiquitous silicon-based substrate relied upon today. However, utilization of this technology to store "qubits" is still in its infancy, requiring near absolute zero temperatures, which makes popular application unfeasible. It will be decades before this approaches any sort of practicality. What's true in theory is tough in practice, as they say.

Regarding "matrioshka" brains, we believe such contemplation makes for great intellectual recreation. Pushing our nascent knowledge of the physical universe, macro and micro, to the limit via thought experiment is fun. Again, what's true in theory is tough in practice, rendering this purely academic for perhaps centuries.

Do they exist beyond abstraction somewhere today?
We may never know. It assumes that (brain-like) intelligence can evolve, from our limited perspective, inorganically beyond organic origins.

Will we ever create them?
If we can survive vainglory and pettiness and have the chance to create intelligence greater than our brain, as envisioned by our (target of jabs) Ray Kurzweil, an intelligence without human foibles and physical frailness, then perhaps. Again, we are not optimistic regarding this scenario.

We believe that we'll not venture much beyond our immediate physical environment. And given the history of our species to date, it is questionable whether we will survive while trying to maintain discipline over our increasing technological prowess.

Of course we hope we are wrong in this respect!

Send us your questions today!

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