LifeOS: exploring the system that executes DNA

December 2, 2011

Evolution as a Quantum Process

We are quanta. We are each individuals and as such we feel separate from that which surrounds us. However the billions of us on the Planet are engaged in an ongoing quantum calculation. It is waves of our human actions that impact the Planet, solving for survival.

A quantum computer has the ability to calculate multiple possibilities simultaneously. For example, to solve a password problem a conventional computer would try all of the possible solutions, one at a time. A quantum computer would try all possible options at once, filtering out the failures and finally settling on one that would be implemented, while the others would act as if they were never even tried.

Seems to me that this is a pretty good description of how our mind works. We consider many options, evaluating them against each other in a virtual space where the actions are simulated. We finally settle on a plan of action and do it. The rejected options act as if they were never tried.

So, each agent in our system is like a quantum bit. Each one is a multifunction unit that contains its own processor, operating system, input/output devices, memory and power supply. The problem we are solving is how to grow, reproduce and disperse among the other quantum bits that form our Universe.

The only way this could work is if the system “knows” what each bit is doing in real time. The system has to be aware of the progress of all of the options being calculated at once. This is the coherent, holographic, quantum field property of the physical Universe.

This is very similar to the idea of multiple universes, except they all exist in a quantum virtual reality, while only one solution is manifest. A quantum calculation processes all possible outcomes at once, assessing probabilities, filtering and sorting, until a solution is reached. Once implemented, the solution becomes input for the next wave of calculations. The system is always trying to predict and validate its future. It does so in waves of repeating cycles.

This happens in our version of consciousness. We humans are constantly predicting our immediate future. We are constantly calculating velocities and trajectories of moving objects around us, while we keep track of our own location and movement. Will that truck arrive before i can cross the street, or not? Other mobile agents in our system are doing the same thing. Neurons are quite capable of acting the same way. They are constantly predicting what their input should be and react when it is not as expected. This pattern of process repeats throughout Natural Systems.

Human beings are agents within the system and act like quantum bits. We are a great example of quantum computation. Take a task force attempting to solve a problem. Each member takes on the solution as a goal. Each member embarks on a search limited by what they see as the best possible solution. All members are in contact and share their ideas. They each choose the possible solution based on their perspective, while being aware of the progress of other possibilities. When a consensus is reached, action follows a single path and the many other possibilities vanish as if they were never considered.

In this model, the quantum process is consciousness in action. Just as we share ideas and reach conclusions, so do our neurons. So do the lactose intolerant cells of e.coli when confronted with only lactose for food. So do stem cells. And so does water, coherent electromagnetic fields, and plasma. All is quantum consciousness, with ours being a subset. Just as our subset produces a single point of consciousness from trillions of cells, so does every other subset up an down the scale. On the one end we have single cells endowed with a sense of self, while species, ecosystems and Gaia herself show the same ability.

What do stem cells, superbugs, dopamine neurons have in common? The common thread is that these cells change their structure in response to incoming information. They adapt to changes in the environment. It doesn’t require generations for natural selection to bring about adaptive change, cells adapt to the environment in real time. Natural selection tests the validity of the adaptive changes, but they originate at the cellular level. In other words, direction, purpose and goal oriented behavior are present and active at the cellular level. This system isn’t guided by blind chance, but specific targeted goals, like growth, reproduction and dispersal.

September 19, 2011

Probability, Uncertainty and Quantum Waves of Consciousness

The terms uncertainty and probability are mathematical concepts that do not refer to anything physical. Uncertainty is a condition of the mind. Whether the cat is alive or dead is only an uncertainty to the mind of an observer outside the box. To the cat and its fleas, there is no uncertainty. Probability is statistical, inferring the comparison of many events over time. Time is another mental concept involving a memory and something like an imagination that can plot a path into the future.

If it is true that Quantum Mechanics, “is the mathematical description of the motion and interaction of subatomic particles,” and involves these same nonphysical, but decidedly mental concepts, how can we deny that QM is the very essence of intelligence? When we say, “That’s probably true,” or “I think so,” we are exercising our ability to imagine the future.

How is it that subatomic particles are engaged in the same kind of behavior? If subatomic particles are somehow connected to future events, it must be through some nonphysical process that remembers, evaluates and acts, very much like our own consciousness. The process is most certainly nonlinear, non-local, fully coherent and interconnected.

The model becomes clear when we view the Universe, not as an explosion, but a computation. The Big Bang becomes the Big Bootup, with no need to suspend classical physics for it to happen.

There is no paradox between quantum mechanics and classical physics if you consider one is the process and the other is the output. In the information processing model, the output of the quantum process is the physical Universe. The physical Universe is the expression of the current state of the process. The overlapping, nested and holistically interconnected quantum coherent fields represented by wavefunction, are the process in action. In this model it makes perfect sense that subatomic particles represent non-local variables, and could be collapsed by local interference.

March 8, 2010

What is Consciousness?

What is consciousness? That which observes fields of information, matter and energy, and calls them reality. Need it be more complex than that? Fields of information, matter and energy comprise our environment. Our consciousness interprets the environment and acts within it. We watch.

If that isn’t enough of a definition for you, there are more involved version to be found almost everywhere you look. Everyone wants to take a shot at it; we all have one. There is Consciousness Online, Center for Consciousness Studies(U of A), as well as dozens of universities, new age retreats and thousands of blogs that tag themselves as relating to the subject. The variety of descriptions reflects the difficulty of the enterprise. Every individual is describing a unique view of “reality”, that has been learned within a unique context. Every field of study has its own unique viewpoint, (piece of the elephant) that influences their observations. On top of that, each discipline develops a unique jargon to describe what they “see”. I call it the Tower of Babel approach. The more you read, the worse it gets; agreement on this subject is rare.

What this discussion really needs is a common denominator. The inquiry needs to be scaled to a level of functionality, where language and terminology can be used in common.

Rather than looking at consciousness from our human perspective, we need to look at how reality and consciousness relate to biological systems in general. Rather than concentrating on the complex internal details, let’s look at how the process functions at this higher level. At this level, the functionality of mobile species is simple: they move, eat, grow, expel waste and reproduce. We don’t care what goes on in their heads, just that they function within the environmental system they inhabit. However, we can note that the ability of an agent to be aware of its surroundings, is essential to three out the five functions. In its simplest form, awareness involves the processing of information. Here we can find some common ground.

The studies of complex systems, quantum mechanics, cybernetics, cellular biology, single celled organisms, chaos theory, fractals, holography, bioelectrics and information technologies share some common conceptual underpinnings. They are all explorations into information processing. There are many rules and laws that are consistent across these fields of study. They share common formulae for the construction of networks, for example.

The language developed by information technologies is known and understood across all languages, national and cultural boundaries. It was developed with functionality as it’s goal, and information processing and distribution it’s primary functions. Biological systems exhibit nearly identical patterns of functionality.

We find the same patterns of process in action in cells where DNA finds, copies and transfers genetic information. The universal rules and laws governing robust digital networks, outlined by Information Technologies offers the foundation for a common language to discuss consciousness, biological life and the material universe, as well.

The second common denominator is that consciousness, cellular activity, quantum mechanics, atomic structure are characterized by fields. Just as our consciousness is the result of waves of firing neurons(fields), matter is the result of waves of atomic particles interacting through fields of force(energy).

From plasma experiments, to growing tips of plants, to firing neurons, it is fields, processing information, that guide interactions. Consciousness is just such a field, processing input and directing actions. Looking at it in this light, all biological processes cycle through a phase of pure information, on the way to a phase of pure matter. Once it is seen as a fundamental function of biological systems, rather than an exclusive attribute of human evolution, consciousness reveals itself.

cheers,
jim

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