Mar 30, 2006

Google Finance Beta

Google launched google finance.
Right now it provides two things one is the market summary and the other is the biz news. You can get the quotes for Nasdaq listed shares with the search bar on the top.If you are logged on then you can save you portfolio with the list of companies whose shares you want to watch for. With this google now jumps into an area of finance sites which has already many players but as they have shown in past they aim for the top.

Does Intelligence has a survival rate?

Another one from my old notebook, written on 16th july 2004...

Are we headed for Doomsday?

Most people think that being the most intelligent species of all, has only advantages we can manipulate nature, its resources and other organisms for our interest. But does intelligence has a survival rate? We may be the most intelligent of all animals but we do fight for small things. Nations go on war for mere things. Does that mean we are not stable as the other organisms? In this universe there are 10^11 galaxies and in each galaxy there are 10^11 stars. It is highly possible that there is intelligent life on other planets in far off solar systems. So why have we not been contacted by an advanced alien civilization? Doest it suggest that as intelligence increases we (as a system) become unstable and tend to destroy ourselves.

Our evolution stopped when we became civilised about 10,000 years ago, and since then we have remained biologically the most advanced, evolved species on this planet. But our intelligence has increased many folds, we have understood many complex things. Prior to the development of paper, information was passed on to the next generations only by the way of mouth. When man discovered writing and invented symbols, an information explosion took place. Today we are flooded with information. We have millions of papers been published this very moment. This may definately be the mark of our intelligence but it clearly shows the knowledge and explosion of information.

This explosion of information may not be good for our survival. It is no coincidence that we havent found any intelligent beings in the universe so far. We have not found any alien civilization which are far more advanced than us. Because any civilisation when advances in intelligence and science they either destory themselves or thier planet. In my opinion every species at every stage of its evolution and development has a survival rate. For an organism like bacteria it may be very high , for some viruses it may be infinity (implying that they are immortal), so as intelligence increases the survival rate of that particular species decreases. For a highly evolved and intelligent sepicies like man it may be very close to '0' and we may be on the verge of extinction.

All this do seem to suggest that being intelligent is not a very good proposition but till our survival rate is above zero we neeednt worry but we sure can wonder...

Mar 29, 2006

New theory of Evolution -- The Struggle for Survival

I was going throught my old notebooks and I found out this... It is an article written by me on 27th march 2004.

The idea of evolution as understood today is based on the Darwin's book "Origin of Species". The salient idea of Neo-Darwinism (as it is known today) happens to be the survival of the fittest. Published way back in 1859, the book still happens to be the centre of the theory of evolution. This theory explains satisfactorily how the organisms evolveed by adapting themselves to the changes in the environment. Now it has been shown that these changes manifest themselves in the form of the mutations in the genes of the organisms. These mutations over many generations give rise to the new species.But all this is applicable in a static environment in the sense that environment undergoes changes which are too slow and hence other organisms which are suited to the change survive by natural selection. The Darwin's theory is based on puree chance that a given population may have a mutant which may have no advantage in normal circumstances but when the environment changes they have a relative advantage and generations later, they form the major part of the population.

But there happens to be certain missling links or fallacies in the Darwin's theory. Consider for example the lion-deer paradox -- "The deer is grazing on the green grass and unknown to the deer the lion is watching it, slowly the lion goes towards it and the deer sensing his presence runs, the lion runs after it. Now the environment has manifested a change in terms of a predator, whose speed is not as good as that of the prey. The prey (deer) has adapted quite well to this change by running away at top speed. But now if we apply Neo-Darwinism, the deer should be naturally selected and survive. Because it fits itself with the environment so well. As we all know this doesnt neccesarily happen. The deer may be killed or may escape. How can Darwin's theory account for this? It happens to be a mere approximation of a more genaral theory that should explain evolution in all kinds of environments, including an environment of this kind which I term as dynamic to distinguish fromt he changes that are too slow and take years to manifest themselves.

This explains the need for a new theory of evolution. Under dynamic environmental conditions it seems that fittest organism may not survive but the one who struggles well (like a deer who tries very hard and escapes the lion) can survive. Thus I propose the "Survival of the one who can struggle hypothesis". Organisms evolve into new species and survive drastic environmental changes but they struggle for living, they struggle to keep the life going. This explains why so many species have been wiped out because they didnt struggle well and could make up. This hypothesis can be applied to the so said dynamic environments which change so rapidly that the Darwin's theory fails completely to describe them. One more important differnce is that the Darwin's theory apparently applies only to the populatoin of community (biotic) as a whole, it cannot be expressed for an individual of a species. On the other hand the theory proposed here is centered on an individual and then takes the sum total of them to express for populations and communities.

It appears that the nature may have a struggle coefficient for a particular species, under the dynamic environment that may help us to predict whether that population will be able to survive under a given environment. Consider for example, a population of N number of organisms of a particular species. We can introduce several dynamic environmental factors and determine their survival. Our idea should be to make them struggle and not to check if they fit in the changed environment. It means though they may not have complete mutations in their genes they may survive. Conduting such experiments with proper control we may determine the struggle coefficient of teh species empirically.

In this article I tried to present the short falls of the Darwin's theory of evolution and gave the "Struggle hypothesis". Only more research and experimentation in truely dynamic environment can put more light on this problem. I would sign off with "I man struggles through out his life so his evolution is never complete..."

Mar 8, 2006

CS Students and Society

We have only one eletronics subject this semester (communication systems) and the teacher who handles that course (henceforth known as ET) is so monotonus that we are always sleepy. Yesterday when he had a 2 hrs class(alas)... we were a lot bored... in the middle one student asked him to go out for some reason and then did not return... ET was furious... he began to explain that CS students have more responsiblity then other branchs of engineering and how the entire society depends on us... we should be more enthusiastic at studies and we ought not take any break as been in cs means u take enjoyment from your results... and blah blah blah ... but just as he finished and went to the board to teach again, one student from the back said sir pls take this topic in the next class and it was it... ET was soo sad now he said i came here to teach but no one is interested so i will stop ... i see all dull faces... and then again while taking attendace he reminded us of our moral obligations to the society been a cs student...:P