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All interpretation or observation of reality is necessarily fiction. In this case, the problem is that man is a moral animal abandoned in an amoral universe and condemned to a finite existence with no other purpose than to perpetuate the natural cycle of the species. It is impossible to survive in a prolonged state of reality, at least for a human being. We spend a good part of our lives dreaming, especially when we're awake.

― Carlos Ruiz Zafón, The Angel's Game

This reminds me of the following passage from We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver:

But keeping secrets is a discipline. I never use to think of myself as a good liar, but after having had some practice I had adopted the prevaricator's credo that one doesn't so much fabricate a lie as marry it. A successful lie cannot be brought into this world and capriciously abandoned; like any committed relationship it must be maintained, and with far more devotion than the truth, which carries on being carelessly true without any help. By contrast, my lie needed me as much as I needed it, and so demanded the constancy of wedlock: Till death do us part.

Counterfactual: the theory of evolution is one of the most successful scientific theories, yet it contains no equations; nor numbers. It is rather a framework of ideas in which observations can be made sense of.

Which in turn reminds me of The Onion news piece 'Multiple Stab Wounds May Be Harmful To Monkeys'. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cQ7J7UjsRqg

My initial response was to chuckle, but when my analytical capacities kicked in a moment later I was disappointed.

If his initial assumptions was that he was walking into a bar, does that make him atheist in this metaphor? Substitute "walked into a bar" by "believed there is a god", the thing I assume it is a metaphor of. You will see it makes no sense.

I highly recommend anyone interested in hard sci-fi to read Blindsight.

On a not so much related, but equally interesting hypothetical note of naughty AI: consider the situation that AIs aren't passing the Turing Test, not because they are not good enough, but because they are failing it on purpose.

I'm pretty sure I remember this from the book River of Gods by Ian McDonald.

Though I appreciate the fun, you are forgetting that this is a solution to a problem that lies in old-fashioned rudeness of interrupting one another, something quite impossible on a turn-based medium as this.

On a different note, some people may be distracted too much by the ice cream, and the goal of making them listen might be forgone because of this.

Isn't "intuition" in that case not simply subconscious empirical knowledge?

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