Re: virus: Memes and Modes

Tony Hindle (
Sun, 30 Mar 1997 03:02:19 +0100

Dave Pape writes
>Exactly: because we don't have to worry about doing them using "conscious
>effort". The problem with multitasking comes when you're trying to do two
>things at the same time /consciously/, because conscious cognitive
>processing is simulated sloppy serial-ish ner ner see above. Cool! :)

I agree. here are some further thoughts. What we have all
been mistaking for our serial stream of consciousness is in fact
simply the changing stream of dominant/most active neuronal
complexes (Dennettology).
Consider what happens when we do long division. I choose
long division because it ocured to me that if I "choose" to
calculate 1234 divided by 21 then my next few "draughts" of
consciousness are all under my control. I can do this even if
someone is trying their hardest to distract me by inserting a
memespanner into my ecology. (although if it's Claudia with her
tits out saying "come and get them" then I'm fucked, hopefully
So is my performance of long division an act of free will?
(as in "I" am choosing my next few serial states) I say no. It is
the inevitable series of draughts that were linked (when I was at
school) for performing long division, and the input meme includes
the numbers 1234 and 21 which give my stream of consciousness it's
specific direction.
All this bring me back to Dennett's model of consciousness
bootstrapping it's way up in design space. Memetics in this context
is a very powerful "crane." And any written symbols serve not only
as communication but (perhaps primeraly?) as landmarks for us to
remember where we are and where we are going.
I've drifted off the point slightly (no choice in the
matter you see) But I just want to say something I have experienced
which is curious and relevant to this multi-tasking thread.
I have written comedy monologues for performing during my
stand up act and I have rehearsed some segments so well that I can
now recite them while consciously thinking about something else.
(this first happened while I was rehearsing to tape and I suddenly
realised that I had finished the monologue but had been thinking
about something else.) This is multi-tasking but still only the
"something else" is done consciously (on stage the something else
ranges from "oh shit I am dying" to "Ive just thought of a joke
that I will adlib as soon as I have finished this line".)
Another thought. When "multitasking" by time division
multiplexing between two "separate thought streams", one can create
new analogies that are amusing. This is what some real genius
comics can do on stage anytime.
And the words comic genius are mean I have no choice but to
use this sig. file:

Tony Hindle
The world is like a ride in an amusement park
and when you choose to go on it you think it's real
cos that's how powerfull our minds are
and the ride goes up and down and round and round and it's got thrills
and chills and it's very brightly coloured and it's fun for a while...
some people have been on the ride for a long time
and they begin to question, is this real? or is it just a ride?
and other people have remembered and they come back to us and they say
"Hey dont worry, dont be afraid ever, because this is just a ride"...
...and we kill those people.
"Shut him up we have a lot invested in this ride, shut him up
look at my furrows of worry, look at my big bank account
and my family this has to be real"
Its just a ride, but we always kill those good guys
who try and tell us that, have you ever noticed that?
and let the demons run amuck.
but it doesnt matter because... it's just a ride
and we can change it anytime we want, it's only a choice
no effort, no work, no job, no savings or money
a choice right now between fear and love...
the eyes of fear want you to put bigger locks on your doors,
buy guns, close yourselves off
the eyes of love instead see all of us as one.
heres what we can do to change the world right now to a better ride
take all that money we spend on weapons and defense each year
and instead spend it feeding clothing and educating the poor of the world
which it would many times over not one human being excluded
and we can explore space together, both inner and outer, forever in peace.

...BILL HICKS 1961-1994