1163: "Debugger"

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asdfzxc
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1163: "Debugger"

Postby asdfzxc » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:10 am UTC

Image

Alt-text: "It can take a site a while to figure out that there's a problem with their 'report a bug' form."

I can tell already that this thread is going to go straight to hell.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby rhomboidal » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:24 am UTC

I wouldn't be surprised if most of my brain bugs turned out to be written in hastily-typed JavaScript.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Steve the Pocket » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:28 am UTC

And a company may never learn that its customer service division is staffed by assholes. In the rare chance they didn't set it up that way on purpose, of course.
cephalopod9 wrote:Only on Xkcd can you start a topic involving Hitler and people spend the better part of half a dozen pages arguing about the quality of Operating Systems.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby scytheslash » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:35 am UTC

Just created an account to say that this strip reminded me forcibly of Calvin and Hobbes :)

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby addams » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:24 am UTC

The brain is straight foreword and understandable.
The Mind? The Mind is a function of the brain, yet more difficult to understand.

Is Mind still the final frontier?
I am still willing to explore my own.

I need more than a map to explore the Minds of some of my fellow Humans.

There is a lot of room in the Mind. Some people have wide open spaces. Other people have cramped, cluttered, dark rooms.
The brain is, just, a little fatty tissue with interesting fluid filled areas.

The Mind is where both The Problem and The Solution are.
Like snowflakes, no two are alike.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby MiB24601 » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:37 am UTC

addams wrote:The brain is straight foreword and understandable.


Oh, if only that were the case. The more we learn about the brain, the more we learn how complicated it really it and how much we really don't understand about it.
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby mishka » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:44 am UTC

MiB24601 wrote:
addams wrote:The brain is straight foreword and understandable.


Oh, if only that were the case. The more we learn about the brain, the more we learn how complicated it really it and how much we really don't understand about it.

The apparent complexity of the brain is a defence mechanism to prevent the conscious mind from overtaking the unconscious mind.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby McBee » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:45 am UTC

The Grebulons had this same problem in Mostly Harmless...

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby jpk » Mon Jan 21, 2013 6:59 am UTC

mishka wrote:
MiB24601 wrote:
addams wrote:The brain is straight foreword and understandable.


Oh, if only that were the case. The more we learn about the brain, the more we learn how complicated it really it and how much we really don't understand about it.

The apparent complexity of the brain is a defence mechanism to prevent the conscious mind from overtaking the unconscious mind.


Th "conscious mind" is a helper function for the "unconscious" mind.

EDIT: And of course the unconscious mind is a recursive function.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby da Doctah » Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:17 am UTC

addams wrote:Is Mind still the final frontier?
I am still willing to explore my own.

I need more than a map to explore the Minds of some of my fellow Humans.

There is a lot of room in the Mind. Some people have wide open spaces. Other people have cramped, cluttered, dark rooms.
The brain is, just, a little fatty tissue with interesting fluid filled areas.

My mind is a vast and complicated territory which is only sparsely covered by any of the maps I've tried to draw of it. Latest evidence that there's more going on up there than I can ever hope to understand:

I woke up this morning from a dream in which I had stopped for a meal at a chain franchise family restaurant owned by Donald Trump. (Each location in the chain had a trademark thatched roof, just like the boss.) After looking over the menu, my dining companion told the waiter "I'll have the retired-lab-rat burrito".

Waiter: "Tumorous or behavioral?"

Dining companion: "Can I get a combo?"

Waiter: "Sure, but just so you know, it's a dollar extra."

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby ijuin » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:17 am UTC

By Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, no system of any but the most trivial complexity can fully describe itself without resorting to either axioms or tautologies. Therefore, perfectly describing the functioning of the human mind would require something more powerful than a human mind to do the describing--i.e. a superhuman mind, which in turn would be incapable of perfectly describing itself.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby addams » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:29 am UTC

Yes. This is only the beginning of the thread and the edges of the territory are folding in on themselves; Just like a brain.

Most brains are pretty much all alike.
The Minds have wild variations.

Like computers, the software makes all the difference.
Life is, just, an exchange of electrons; It is up to us to give it meaning.

We are all in The Gutter.
Some of us see The Gutter.
Some of us see The Stars.
by mr. Oscar Wilde.

Those that want to Know; Know.
Those that do not Know; Don't tell them.
They do terrible things to people that Tell Them.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby TimXCampbell » Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:52 am UTC

Coincidentally, just yesterday I did a “lol-meme” style cartoon about assessing the output of one's own brain.

If your brain thinks that sounds good, you can check it out here.

(I am not sure if “lol-meme” is the correct word to describe those graphic memes on the net. Is there, in fact, a word for those things? I can't quite bring myself to just call them “memes.”)

rhomboidal wrote:I wouldn't be surprised if most of my brain bugs turned out to be written in hastily-typed JavaScript.

Do you ever find yourself taking commands from strangers? If so, it might be time to upgrade your engine.

ijuin wrote:[Per] Godel's Incompleteness Theorem ... perfectly describing the functioning of the human mind would require something more powerful than a human mind ...

I'm not sure that Godel's theorem is entirely applicable here, unless we actually want to simulate a mind. And if that was our goal, is it likely it would present itself as a formal system? I honestly don't know the answer to this one. We can simulate some things (like fluid dynamics and quantum mechanics) pretty well. Do we somehow go beyond formal systems into ... cheating? (I'm thinking of renormalization in QM.) I'd appreciate some enlightenment on this matter.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Nix_Seb » Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:16 am UTC

This comic reminded me of a car my dad had when I was growing up. If anyone remembers the Renault 25 that had a 'pioneering' on-board computer that would keep you abreast of the car's functions.

Reminiscent of HAL, I was intrigued as the computer began self diagnosing and stating that the computer system had a major malfunction. That car really felt futuristic though, the computer was like a distant ancestor of Siri.
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby nlitchfield » Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:48 am UTC

What interests me is not so much that we don't know how the brain/mind works, but that we know it to be unreliable (for higher reasoning), but still make use of it. At the same time we caveat sales of much more reliable hardware and software with "not to be used in safety critical applications" type clauses.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Klear » Mon Jan 21, 2013 10:17 am UTC

TimXCampbell wrote:If your brain thinks that sounds good, you can check it out here.

(I am not sure if “lol-meme” is the correct word to describe those graphic memes on the net. Is there, in fact, a word for those things? I can't quite bring myself to just call them “memes.”)


The name for this particular species is Advice Animals, though meme is alright I think, if it is obvious you are refering to "interent meme", which is a specific concept.

Also, knowyourmeme is becoming my procractination aid of choice, slowly phasing out TVTropes, so beware.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby TiLt » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:07 am UTC

Any sufficiently advanced system is indistinguishable from magic. Take that brain!
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Afrael » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:30 am UTC

Any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from having a brain.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby peewee_RotA » Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:49 am UTC

Bart: What is the mind? Is it just a system of impulses or is it something tangible?
Homer: Relax. What is mind? No matter. What is matter? Never mind.
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby jgh » Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:53 pm UTC

First priority when writing any code: debugging the error handler.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby alvinhochun » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:07 pm UTC

You don't even know if the compiler generates the correct assembly, or if the assembler generates correct machine code, or if the processor performs the correct operation.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Klear » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:13 pm UTC

alvinhochun wrote:You don't even know if the compiler generates the correct assembly, or if the assembler generates correct machine code, or if the processor performs the correct operation.


...or if your senses report to you correctly and whether the computer even exists.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby peewee_RotA » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:20 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
alvinhochun wrote:You don't even know if the compiler generates the correct assembly, or if the assembler generates correct machine code, or if the processor performs the correct operation.


...or if your senses report to you correctly and whether the computer even exists.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... ymBxk#t=9s
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby tastelikecoke » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:05 pm UTC

addams wrote:The brain is straight foreword and understandable.

The brain stem's the preface,
And the spinal cord's the table of contents.
The face is the introduction,
And the skull is the hardbound cover.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby peewee_RotA » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:09 pm UTC

tastelikecoke wrote:
addams wrote:The brain is straight foreword and understandable.

The brain stem's the preface,
And the spinal cord's the table of contents.
The face is the introduction,
And the skull is the hardbound cover.


I figured the spine of the book would be more obvious... but this just about covers it.
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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby dbam987 » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:16 pm UTC

I plan on attaching Visual Studio to my brain process and see where exactly exceptions are thrown. :P

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby thesingingaccountant » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:26 pm UTC

This is far too existential for me to grasp today, yet I can't seem to let it be... And I have no clue what I've done with my Super Soaker...
Never trust a psychic who has to reschedule.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby rmsgrey » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:56 pm UTC

dbam987 wrote:I plan on attaching Visual Studio to my brain process and see where exactly exceptions are thrown. :P


The first exception will be attempting to use Visual Studio in a non-Windows OS...

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Klear » Mon Jan 21, 2013 2:59 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:
dbam987 wrote:I plan on attaching Visual Studio to my brain process and see where exactly exceptions are thrown. :P


The first exception will be attempting to use Visual Studio in a non-Windows OS...


Maybe he's got a "Vista-ready" sticker sutured to his arm?

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby cream wobbly » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:15 pm UTC

Klear wrote:
TimXCampbell wrote:If your brain thinks that sounds good, you can check it out here.

(I am not sure if “lol-meme” is the correct word to describe those graphic memes on the net. Is there, in fact, a word for those things? I can't quite bring myself to just call them “memes.”)


The name for this particular species is Advice Animals, though meme is alright I think, if it is obvious you are refering to "interent meme", which is a specific concept.

Also, knowyourmeme is becoming my procractination aid of choice, slowly phasing out TVTropes, so beware.

Although implicated, "meme" completely the wrong term, given that it was coined to be a parallel term with "gene", but applied to culture. The "meme" itself is quite hard to find: what you're describing is the physical manifestation of the expression of that meme. "Advice Animals" is a good-enough label for this type of thread, but that's internal jargon: something you'd only know by being involved. These are simply "cartoons", or "comics", or "captioned images". Sorry to burst your bubble.

The fact of them being shared so rabidly on fora such as echochamber facebook is because of the "fad" meme: a shortlived desire to share something to appear current, much like the spice words, "cool", "rad", "brill", and "epic" (there's nothing low temperature about "cool", nothing dangerously subversive about "radical", insufficient lumens for "brilliant", and "epical" is something that might be attributed to an epic, not falling off one's bicycle).

More prevalent memes are the "introduce my companions and myself to the party", the "inquiry about health", the "comment on weather", the "when corrected respond with an insult", and so forth.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Klear » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:31 pm UTC

That's why I wrote that "Internet meme" is a specific concept. It was created by misappropriating the word meme as Dawkins coined it, but it has since become perfect for description of a specific (more or less) internet phenomenon, and as such it is probably here to stay.

You have to make distinction between meme (cultural theory) and meme (internet fad). Or you can argue with people that they are using the term wrong, but that's fighting a losing battle, I believe.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby TimXCampbell » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:40 pm UTC

cream wobbly wrote:These are simply "cartoons", or "comics", or "captioned images". Sorry to burst your bubble.

The fact of them being shared so rabidly ... is because of the "fad" meme ...

I see that you're trying to stick closely with the Dawkinsian definition. I salute your effort. Next you can try to take back the word “gay.” :P

Hey, my spell-checker doesn't recognize the word “Dawkinsian.” Well, I think it has memetic potential, so maybe one day.

Yes, I realize that some people will complain that I used “memetic” incorrectly just now, but I think that the word “meme” has forever escaped the small box Dawkins put it in. The scope of memetics is thriving, just as the scope of genes expanded from single-celled creatures to you and me.

I have no idea how Dawkins actually feels about this matter, incidentally.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby ctdonath » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:49 pm UTC

...the whole problem very simple to deal with, in fact. Replace the central mission module. There was another one, a backup, an exact duplicate of the original. It had to be physically replaced because, for safety reasons, there was no link whatsoever between the original and its backup. Once the central mission module was replaced it could itself supervise the reconstruction of the rest of the system in every detail, and all would be well.

Robots were instructed to bring the backup central mission module from the shielded strong room, where they guarded it, to the ship's logic chamber for installation.

This involved the lengthy exchange of emergency codes and protocols as the robots interrogated the agents as to the authenticity of the instructions. At last the robots were satisfied that all procedures were correct. They unpacked the backup central mission module from its storage housing, carried it out of the storage chamber, fell out of the ship and went spinning off into the void.

This provided the first major clue as to what it was that was wrong. Further investigation quickly established what it was that had happened. A meteorite had knocked a large hole in the ship. The ship had not previously detected this because the meteorite had neatly knocked out that part of the ship's processing equipment which was supposed to detect if the ship had been hit by a meteorite.

- Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby airdrik » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:53 pm UTC

TimXCampbell wrote:Coincidentally, just yesterday I did a “lol-meme” style cartoon about assessing the output of one's own brain.

If your brain thinks that sounds good, you can check it out here.
...


Ya know, if more people understood this simple concept..
Well, really I have no idea.
Perhaps some people would more willingly let go of misconceptions
but how can we be certain about anything
if our brain said something was true
and we had built understanding upon that something
was it the understanding or was it that something, or was it something else?

... maximum recursion depth exceeded ...

sigh. I can't figure it out.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Missinggoat » Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:27 pm UTC

ijuin wrote:By Godel's Incompleteness Theorem, no system of any but the most trivial complexity can fully describe itself without resorting to either axioms or tautologies. Therefore, perfectly describing the functioning of the human mind would require something more powerful than a human mind to do the describing--i.e. a superhuman mind, which in turn would be incapable of perfectly describing itself.


Well put. I'd also like to ask why, if the human mind can only validate its own operation using tautologies or axioms, do we still trust it? To put it another way, trusting something means we have faith in it. If our belief in the soundness of our own reasoning is entirely an unsupported faith position, what's wrong with other faith positions? Epistemology is not about avoiding faith, but deciding where to place our faith. Why should I place my faith in my own mind, when there are so many others like it that think differently?

What if we started at another presupposition? You mentioned the concept of a superhuman mind, which of course would be bound by the laws of logic, just as ours are. In order to escape this problem, we have to somewhere beyond the laws of logic, which of course sounds stupid because going beyond logic is logically contradictory. But let me remind you that logic itself is a pattern recognized by our own reasoning. So even if we place our faith in logic, we place our faith in our own reason, which is inherently unreliable. In order to reach certainty, we have to go outside the regions of the world that can be understood by ourselves. Now, I'm not a mystic, and I do believe that within the laws of logic the human mind is super useful. But logic had to come from somewhere. It didn't come from the big bang, because that was material and itself governed by logic. The only thing left is God. He is a being beyond logic, because he created it. He can't make a rock so big he can't lift it, not because he is bound by the laws of logic, but because at his level of authority, that kind of challenge is meaningless. He deals in infinity. He can make a rock so big, and he can lift it. God isn't limited by matter or by logic.

As such, he is the only reasonable starting point for reason. Isaiah 29:16, "Can the pot say to the potter, 'You know nothing'?" Can a book itself challenge the decisions of its author? As such, we cannot challenge God.

I'm not saying we can prove God exists. But I believe His existence is tautological. God proves that we exist.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Klear » Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:35 pm UTC

Missinggoat wrote:(...) In order to reach certainty, we have to go outside the regions of the world that can be understood by ourselves. Now, I'm not a mystic, and I do believe that within the laws of logic the human mind is super useful. But logic had to come from somewhere. It didn't come from the big bang, because that was material and itself governed by logic. The only thing left is God. He is a being beyond logic, because he created it. He can't make a rock so big he can't lift it, not because he is bound by the laws of logic, but because at his level of authority, that kind of challenge is meaningless. He deals in infinity. He can make a rock so big, and he can lift it. God isn't limited by matter or by logic.

As such, he is the only reasonable starting point for reason. Isaiah 29:16, "Can the pot say to the potter, 'You know nothing'?" Can a book itself challenge the decisions of its author? As such, we cannot challenge God.

I'm not saying we can prove God exists. But I believe His existence is tautological. God proves that we exist.


This is not an unreasonable position. However, you need to realize that beyond this, there is nothing we can ever say about such God, even referring to such God as "Him" is kinda misleading.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby Vaelin » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:20 pm UTC

Your brain is the most important organ in your body. According to your brain.
The difference between science and the fuzzy subjects is that science requires reasoning while those other subjects merely require scholarship.
Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat. -From books by R.A.Heinlein

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby JustDoug » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:37 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:
dbam987 wrote:I plan on attaching Visual Studio to my brain process and see where exactly exceptions are thrown. :P


The first exception will be attempting to use Visual Studio in a non-Windows OS...


I think he'd be better off using the Evolution OS SDK toolchain. I understand that's what's been used in this case.

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby MadLogician » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:42 pm UTC

Re the tag-line:
a common situation is that a site requires you to log in/register to report a problem. If you're trying to report a problem with the registration process ...

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Re: 1163: "Debugger"

Postby ucim » Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:44 pm UTC

Missinggoat wrote:Why should I place my faith in my own mind, when there are so many others like it that think differently? ... [God] is the only reasonable starting point for reason. ... I believe His existence is tautological. God proves that we exist.
This conclusion is reached using the very same fallible mind that decided not to have faith in its own conclusions.

Do not needlessly posit pluralities.

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