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Part is about transformation

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Part is about transformation.

I'd like to take you on a transformative journey.

A technology we are all intimately familiar with.

The human brain.

It will be a little disconcerting.

What I'm going to show you is not an intelligence test

Doesn't matter your background, gender, race ...

ready to have some fun? [yeah!]

See the two inner disks out of phase.

Divide audience. Left side - when the disk is white, say white.

When right side - say white.

In phase.

Very very difficult to see them in phase.

Perception versus reality.

- Cover middle of picture. Blocks appear same color. Remove finger, they are different.

- Disks moving behind \"clouds\" - are they identical gray? [No.]

What is it that defines you?

What is most personal to you is your inner mind.

That which you keep private.

Truth from falsehood. What defines you.

Here I am presenting you with examples of things which you know are false, but you see as true.

- blue and yellow squares appear to zig/zag

actually moving together [\"no way\" hubbub]

- look at these two table tops, look different shapes. [\"don't tell me they are the same\" laughter]

- look at these two nuts.

Look how fast, \"pop\" the illusion starts.

You know 100% without any question what the shape of this is.

I've seen them 1000s of times. We are all hardwired the same way.
Reality is that which independently of your perception and belief. It may be aligned, or not, and you would not know.

Two illusions, not generally known.

What are the illusions - I have to tell you what they are for you to be aware of them.

What does this mean?

First of all, it has to do with vision.

I started with theoretical physics. When we were looking, searching for universal laws. Scratching out little areas. Quirky areas.

For brain research, illusions reveal hidden rules of perceptual system.

It comes to us so easily.


When this woman is driving, she is not calculating.

Trees are changing shape, all these things change, yet we make it all seem effortless.

We make mistakes driving ... as this individual unfortunately found out.
But most of the time we have an accurate view of the world.

Perception allows us to find food, ascribe meaning to scenes. Allow us to live.
Three frameworks:

1/ what are you looking at

2/ what is the meaning

3/ core beliefs
Underlying commonality - they try to resolve noise, conflict

Below awareness

Map to support organizational framework.
Very much the way it is in Physics.

Under all this complexity is a tremendous simplicity.

Fundamental laws.

Same structure in the brain.
Most people think perception must be like a camera.

Tremendous simplification. Your brain interprets the photo.
When we look





You can see the depth, you can be fooled. The whole scene can be flat.
3D - image.

One view for each eye. Semi-flat images.

How it does that is interesting.

Flat image is ambiguous.

Take a look at shape.
If black lines represent lines of sight, if it subtends same angle to the eye, will cast the same image on the retina.

Here you can see different shapes also cast same shape on the retina.

Yet brain comes up with correct interpretation most of the time.

All these fundamental qualities.

You need to sort this out.

Rules evolved over millions of years of evolution - because they work.

Does not take a lot of information to resolve ambiguity.

All it takes to resolve these two horse heads - now facing in two different directions.

Two simple lines.

They are context. If I place these lines elsewhere, it would not have the same effect.

You don't need the shadow, the hair.

Your brain will hook onto very little to resolve ambiguity.
Fixate here. Note the balls appear to be crossing.

Same demo. What to they appear to be doing now. By adding a sound at the coincidence time - you have sound influencing your visual perception - now they appear to be bouncing.

Brain will hook onto another sense to resolve ambiguity.

So let's look at an example - rules that operate below the level of awareness.
How is shadow used. Look at the trajectory of this ball. It can bounce or rise.

Now cover with your hand, the shadow so you can still see the trajectory of the ball.

All I've changed is the shadow. Note how that changes your perception of the path of the ball.
Another example of shadow. See the deer on the right is convex. Over here it is concave.

This image an this image are identical, but inverted to each other.

For millions of years, light has always come from above.

Brain analyzes based on where light is coming from.
Another example of shadow. Light check inside the shadow and light check outside the shadow - they are the same. But you interpret them as different.
Q: Box in top left corner, still look lighter?
This one is lighter.
Bump this up again. Look at color in terms of shadow. Brown and yellow - identical colors. [Oooo]

[\"I don't believe that\"]

Now that you know that, try to see them that way.

You can do you little paper cutouts and go, \"Damn\" they really are identical.
You know people parking under sodium lamps driving away in the wrong car.
Give me the mud of the streets and I'll give you the luscious woman ???
Figure over here. Impossible 3 prongs on the bottom, 2 on the top.

Nothing impossible about a flat drawing.

You have spent your entire lives converting 2D drawings into 3D objects.

You use those rules.

Even when you know, you can't stop it.

Common trait of human perceptual system.
Do it in real life. An impossible crate. Goes from the front to the back. [\"I'm out of here.\" laughter]
Q: Can we see this again.

Nothing more contrary than something that is impossible.

You don't readjust with a new system.
Second perceptual framework. More cultural and experience based.

What is salient.

What do I mean by tagging?

Depending on our experience.

All of us can tag this image - wine glasses, knives, forks, napkin.

Depending on how much your experience is rich, you can tell what kind of wine glass this is.

Know how a dog perceives?

Dog doesn't tag the objects - computer / TV.

But when I bring out leash - as walk.

Car door - go for a ride.

What would it look like to use in an impoverished scene.

You can see the forms. What can that possibly be? Your brain starts struggling to attach meaning to that.
That is basically the view of the dog. They haven't tagged the world as much as we have [so AI's may be smarter than us by tagging more than we do??]
I don't get the flames, symbolism.

Are multiple armed people, but none with wings.

Depending on upbringing. This is culturally based.
Magicians play around with meaning.

I'm going to show you a card trick, see if you can catch the manipulation.

[video of card trick]
How many of you caught how he did that card trick?

How many of you caught that he changed his shirt?

She changed her shirt?

They changed the table cloth?

They changed the backdrop?

[video played again with all these changes going on]

You can change gender. Bald to long haired.

They don't notice.
You've just been hired by homeland security - is this plane safe to travel on?


It is obvious.

Still some people have not gotten it.

Would you fly on a place with an engine that pops in and out?
Playing music backwards.

Stairway to Heaven has a hidden message.

Listen very, very carefully.
Now we are going to play the lyrics backwards.

There is no hidden lyrics there. Meaningless junk. Brain doesn't like ambiguity.

It will do it with noise too.

Before I showed you two balls crossing and it changed your vision.

Now sight can change what you hear.

Listen again, now reading lyrics.

[playing backwards - it matches up!]
During the 40th anniversary of the moon landing.

I asked them why there had been no publicity about the hidden message in One Small Step.

Let me show you what I found when I played that backwards.

\"That's one small step for man. One giant leap for mankind.\"

\"Man will space walk. Man will space walk.\"

If I give it a clue, it will grab onto it.

Perception is not a truth police.
Sasha: Did priming devil matter?

Send me sweet dreams backwards.

Played forward. Played backwards.

Then gave him the lyrics. He was laughing his head off.

If I gave each section a different set of lyrics, they would hear different things.
I am passionate about education.

Not what to think, but how to think.

Importance of context. What is being said. What is not being said.

context it the most important.

Make a case for anything by leaving out half the facts.

Especially when there is lack of information.
- Th Brn rgnzs frm Vry Lttl

[audience reads aloud]
Kids drawing. \"I want to be like mommy.\"

Her picture depicts me selling the last snow shovel.

Not a pole, but a snow shovel.

Our past experience can really dramatically throw us off.
Simple but deeper agrument.

Your past or view can keep you from seeing.
Same underlying system.

We all have different beliefs.

Bad consequences.
What is the third organizational framework.

Search for meaning - beginning at age 8.

Palestinian kids can play with Israeli kids up to about the age of 8.
Things that define you.
\"Perceptual Mapping\"

Once a framework is in place, things get twisted to fit that framework.
Lady wanted to make it rain anywhere.

Have you ever failed?

Where do you live?

Can you cause it to rain in Seal Beach tomorrow?

Two days later. It had not rained.

When faced with this direct.

\"I've been thinking about it all day. I caused it to rain in Lousiana by mistake.\"

When you think about it, the brain looks for ways to keep intact.

They are not truth police. It will look for anything to keep that intact.

Even if it is false.

Kept core belief structure intact.
Same thing when fundamentalists predict end of the world and it doesn't come.

They don't change their belief. They rationalize it away.

No amount of evidence is going to change a belief that the world is more than 10,000years old.
Magical and non-magical thinkers.

We see color red.

We map the world in very different ways.

Picture out of Haiti. After 10 days - this child was pulled out of the rubble.

I look at this. Earthquake. 1000s injured. Extremely probable, some one may still be pulled out after 10 days.

This is an example that there is no divine intervention - then why not stop earthquake in the first place.
Magical thinker - this was proof positive of miracle.

We look at it as inversely proportional to evidence, they viewed it as proportional to evidence.

\"No evidence for it\" Big disconnect.
So, how do we map the news. In all sorts of areas.

Personal relationships. We trust someone - then a violation - then you go Mel Gibson, or whatever.

How do we map our own self worth

\"Oh, I'm a failure.\" No matter what you tell them, they continue to map this way.
Perception vs reality.

How do others perceive you.

How do others map you.
Hidden belief systems.

When involved in creation science back in the 1980s.

It is a pseudo science.

Every \"creation scientist\" was a fundamentalist Christian.

No amount of evidence from the fossil record would change their views.
Now we have the climate change debate.

Harkens back to creation science.

Something happening today - people involved in a scientific issue at a level of depth that is unusual.

Puzzle contest - bashing climate change science.

Plethora of data - information coming out - you'd think you need a PhD to combat them.

But interesting they pick up a minority viewpoint - not shared by NASA, JPL ....

I start to scratch. In the world of science, no controversy.

There is a hidden belief.

Accept Earth getting warmer.

One they don't accept is that humans have contributed.

That struck me as curious. Why not?
Because, I found out, the climate skeptics are libertarians. [\"Aha\"]

Core belief - like the power of the individual.

Means government regulations. Easier for them to attack science than change core belief system.

Arguing about science won't get anywhere.
Whatever that core belief, your perceptual system will try to match.
All of you have a core belief system. I'm talking your moral driver.

Something brought you to that core belief. Early on or later.

Most personal of all decisions - this is going to be my core driver.

Subsequent experiences have reinforced it.

Now you come across someone who goes against your core.

Fundamentalist Christian with an Atheist.

Both articulate, intelligent. You decide to set it out. All the information that caused you to make that most personal of all decisions.

And additional information.

You've done it. You don't understand how you'd be bowled over.

The shake their heads.

Big disconnect.

You articulated those things - they are not weakened.

Not talking about buying Prius or Honda. Talking about core beliefs.

\"You know, after listening you and I am stronger in my beliefs.\"

I can spend a week. As robustly as I can.

\"Al, that was really wonderful, but you know what the Bible says ...\"

All those arguments I say go in one ear, get twisted.

Argue with true believer and you have things twisted.
Fearless with Jeff Bridges. Neurotic. Survives plane wreck. Traumatic experience can cause system to fail. If it is failing, maybe needs something else.
Where do cults hang out. People who have their umbilical cords out to stick in something else.

The brain is saying \"system failure\" come in with something else and they will become very zealous.
People don't necessarily think the way we do.

They may not map the way we do.

My wife was heavily involved in the mid-East Peace process.

What were they thinking.
Try to understand how other people map.

you get broad minded.

Avoid myopia.

Get outside your discipline.

Learn philosophy, culture. Get out in the real world.

Why people in academica don't click with the real world.

But people have never stepped in Africa think they can solve problems there.

NOT so open minded that your brains fall out.

But different views that have rigor.

Internally consistent within themselves.

So, when you have different belief systems. Look at them as circles.

Look at them as a Venn diagram. What are the commonalities.

Instead of banging on outside of circle.
Basic - every needs to eat, shelter, dignity, health, water.

We could use this in diplomacy.

Where are we going to focus our efforts - conflicts or commonalities.

In Mid-East - focus on commonalities.

Others are not resolvable.

Don't be cynical or suspicious.

I map.

You map.

We all do it.

I showed an illusion - you could be fooled and not know you are being fooled.

By being aware that you map - all these things - be made aware that you do it

and come up for various ways to stop.
Thank you for Singularity University, Peter Diamandis [applause]
[\"Awesome job Al.\"]
Jack G: Under the circumstances you described

Is there a way, as discussions start, way to avoid being galvanized.
Al: Don't argue about faith. Find overlaps, commonalities.

CEO of my company is a very religious person. We argue about what we need to do.

We had our weekend. No difference. It goes no where.

What do we need to do with this company - our commonality.
Maggie: Great way to do diplomacy. What if someone's core belief is harmful?
It is quivver. I do not have the answers. This can help us with people who differ from us.

Even in that case, look at the commonalities. It's a slow process. You can do it by overwhelming force.

In the military, you are surrounded 24/7. When you are done - you are mapping in the military mindset.

Same in a University. Surrounded by wealth and intellectual ideas. Come out thinking differently.

You can build it out.
Sasha: Emotional priming.
JG: Is wikipedia sign of hope?

Al: Commonality is crap. Technology is a runaway horse. No quality. Editors have been taken away. Good bad and ugly are all on a level playing field.
Need to teach people how to think.
Jose: Fantastic presentation. Philosophy of the mind. What is your next book?

Al: A book on this.


Monday, June 28, 2:30 pm [Note - this will be in the Marshmallow building 583C]

Team Project Session

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