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How do we improve our world?

Part 1: 
An introduction to "Human Software"

19 June 2007

Are you able to look critically at yourself and your nation?
 
  
After an engineer designs an automobile, refrigerator, or other product, he must critically examine his creation in order to make an improved model next time.

If an engineer is too emotionally weak to look critically at his work, he will never be successful as an engineer.

This concept also applies to athletes, musicians, and carpenters. You must look critically at your performance if you want to improve.

While this concept is rather obvious in regards to engineering, sports, and music, it is considered treasonous or unpatriotic to criticize a nation.

 
Ironically, if we consider a traitor to be somebody who is harming the nation, then the real traitors are the people who interfere with those of us who are analyzing the nation's problems and trying to improve our situation.

We don't make a nation better by waving flags; boasting that we are the greatest people in the world; or insulting other nations.

In order to improve a nation we must first find some problems that need to be fixed. In order to find problems, we must analyze our nation in the same critical and unbiased manner that we analyze rocks, fish, and flowers. People who are too emotionally weak to handle a critical analysis of their nation are interfering with progress and need to be pushed aside.
If you cannot consider your nation as just another specimen to analyze, then keep quiet and allow other people to do it.

We have achieved phenomenal progress in physical science
 
If we could transport a group of people from centuries ago to our era, they would be astounded by how physically comfortable our lives are. Their homes would seem like torture chambers after they had a chance to experience our modern bathrooms, kitchens, refrigerators, electricity, furnaces, beds, and glass windows.
 
Crude toilets, such as this chamber pot, were common until a few centuries ago.
Until plumbing brought fresh water to people's homes, the residents of a city had to collect rain water, or transport it from a well or a river.
Cleaning clothes, kitchen utensils, and babies was a difficult procedure in areas where it snowed during the winter.
Our ancestors would also be impressed by our dental technology, transportation devices, antibiotics, and power tools. They would be in awe of our knowledge, and there would be no dispute as to which era has the best understanding of the universe.

Isaac Newton, Anthony Leeuwenhoek, and Max Plank would have nothing to say if they were put on television and asked for their opinions on the technical issues that scientists and engineers are discussing today.

Note: Jon Stewart, Howard Stern, Sarah Silverman, and other Jewish comedians should not be considered as "comedians". Rather, they should be considered as Jewish criminals who are promoting hateful propaganda about Muslims and Germans, and who encourage disgusting behavior, sarcastic attitudes, and smartass remarks.
Would our ancestors be impressed by our social progress?
Would our ancestors be impressed by our governments, legal systems, dating services, day care centers, or city planning? Would they be impressed with our knowledge about raising children, war, divorce, homeless people, alcohol abuse, status symbols, crime, religion, jewelry, drug abuse, gambling, orphans, or feminism? Would they recognize us as the undisputed authorities on human life?

All of the social problems that our ancestors suffered from are still occurring in the world today, and many of them seem worse today. For example, the people centuries ago never showed much of a concern about burglary or kidnapping. Therefore, rather than be impressed by our understanding of human life, they would be tempted to give us advice on how to manage our lives and raise our children.

If Plato and Aristotle were interviewed for television today, their opinions about democracies, republics, legal systems, and other social issues would seem just as intelligent as the "social scientists" of today. Actually, they might make a lot of our social scientists, talk show hosts, and political commentators look like idiots.

Why are we having such a difficult time understanding social problems when we are uncovering lots of details about everything else in the universe? A review of how our ancestors developed technology can help us understand what our problem is, and how to fix it.
 
Technical progress occurred at an increasingly rapid rate
In 20,000 BC our ancestors had almost no technology. They had only a few simple stone and bone tools; they knew how to start fires; they made simple animal skin garments; and they could paint pictures on cave walls. In all the thousands of years prior to 20,000 BC humans discovered only a few simple inventions.

However, the pace of development picked up during each millennia. Between 20,000 BC and 5000 BC more inventions were discovered than in all the earlier years. To name a few: the bow and arrow was developed sometime around 10,000 BC, agriculture and domestication of animals around 8000 BC, and pottery around 7000 BC.

The exact dates as to when the technology was discovered is irrelevant for this discussion. The point is that technology developed at an increasingly faster rate.

Between 5000 BC and 1 AD more progress occurred than in any other 5000 year period. For example, copper smelting was developed around 4000 BC, the wheeled cart was invented around 3500 BC, the plow around 3000 BC, and iron smelting around 1000 BC.

Between 1 AD and 1800 AD more progress occurred than in any other 1800 year span, and after 1800 AD progress became so rapid that nobody could keep track of it. Today progress is so rapid that some of our products seem "old" a few years after we buy them.

Humans have gone from one extreme to another. Thousands of years ago a person never saw a new invention or learned any new scientific knowledge during his entire life. Today we have new inventions and discoveries every day, and many of the products we have today are incredibly advanced and complex compared to the simple tools of 10,000 years ago. How can we account for this logarithmic development of physical technology? What has changed about humans to account for this?

How did humans advance from sharp sticks to this in only a few thousand years?
We can rule out genetic changes as being responsible because DNA cannot change at a logarithmic rate. The increasingly rapid rate is evidence that something was accumulating, and what else can accumulate except for that mysterious substance that we refer to as information, knowledge, or culture?

If we can understand how an accumulation of information has had such a profound affect on the development of physical technology, we might be able to apply the concept to the field of social science and bring in increasingly rapid improvements to social technology. So let's take a brief look at the development of physical technology.

The first inventions were inadvertent
The manner in which physical technology developed suggests that all of the early inventions were created inadvertently. Our distant ancestors had no idea that they were capable of developing technology. An example is the manner in which agriculture developed.

Perhaps the first tribes to settle down in agricultural villages were in a certain section of the Mideast we refer to as Mesopotamia, which is where Iraq is today. Both wheat and barley grow wild in this area, and sheep, goats, cows, and pigs also lived in this area. It was the only place in the world with such a combination of grains and animals. However, the manner in which the nomadic tribes became farmers suggests that they never made a conscious attempt to become farmers, and they never realized what they were doing. Rather, farming came about inadvertently.

Before I continue, it is important that you be aware of two issues:

• Grains are not natural foods for humans.

Grain has been the most common food source for humans for the past few thousand years, and this has fooled a lot of people into assuming the grains are natural for humans. However, grains are too hard for our teeth to chew, and our digestive system is incapable of breaking down the casing of the grain if we swallow the grain whole. Grains are a food for birds and mice. It is not even easy for human hands to harvest grains.  Our primitive ancestors ate fruits, vegetables, eggs, and animals.
• Agricultural plants today are different
All of the plants and animals in 20,000 BC were "wild". The wheat, strawberries, peaches, and other plants that farmers grow today have been bred to be more productive, easier to harvest, and faster growing. The wild wheat fields of 20,000 BC were not the same as the amazingly productive and easily harvested wheat fields of today.
In the Dumbing Down series I mentioned that schools are teaching irrelevant aspects of history. It would be more useful if people understood how life has changed because that can help us understand how we got to the point we are at, and how we can improve ourselves.

The first nomadic tribes passing through the fields of wild wheat and barley 20,000 years ago would not have recognized the grains as food. Instead, they would have considered them to be a type of "grass", and the seeds would have been considered irritating because the seeds are encased in hulls that have sharp barbs that get caught in clothing and hair.

People probably forced themselves to eat grains when they were very hungry, but grains could not become a significant part of human diets until people first developed the technology to harvest the grains and process the grains. Furthermore, grains are available only a few months a year; therefore, grains cannot become a major food source for humans until the people develop the technology to create containers that can protect the grain for many months.

The nomadic tribes in the Middle East must have wandered through the fields of wheat and barley for thousands of years without realizing what they could be doing with the grain. They were probably eating grain only when they were very hungry. However, through the centuries of eating grains they would have slowly developed techniques to make it less painful to harvest and eat the grains. For example, they would have discovered that rather than pick the grains from the plant with their fingers, it was easier to use a sharp rock to cut the plants; put the plants into a pile; and then hit the plants with a stick in order to knock the grains out.

Chewing the grains would be annoying, so it wouldn't take long for them to realize that it was better to soak them in water, or pound them with a rock and then add water to make a paste. Once they began making a paste of crushed grains, it would be easy for somebody to notice that the paste is more pleasant to eat after it has been cooked over a fire, thereby creating bread. They would also notice that the paste develops bubbles if left alone for several hours, and that makes a bread that is more pleasant to eat. The first beer may have been created when somebody accidentally put too much water into his mixture, let it sit for many hours, and decided to drink some of the liquid.

Through the centuries they would get better at harvesting and eating the grains, and that would allow them to spend more of their time eating grains and less time chasing after animals. Furthermore, women and children could process the grains, whereas they were of little or no help in hunting animals.

The people were still not farmers, however. It would take a long time before they began making large containers to store the grains. They also had to discover the concept of scattering grains in other areas in order to grow more plants. Apparently they began to discover these concepts after 8000 B.C.

Progress in agriculture was incredibly slow. People would do exactly as their ancestors did for many generations before somebody discovered a trivial improvement. For example, centuries or thousands of years passed before somebody realized that it's better to bury the seeds in the dirt rather than merely scatter them on the surface. It also took a long time before somebody realized that plants need water, and it took a long time before somebody realized that they can dig a ditch from a river to transport water to areas that were too dry for grains to grow naturally.

People also noticed that certain animals are easy to take control of, such as cats, dogs, and ox. Eventually somebody realized that by attaching a rope to an ox, the ox could pull objects. By about 3000 BC somebody discovered the concept of letting an ox pull a sharp stick that a person is holding on the ground, thereby starting the development of the plow.
Farming was an accident
We will never know the exact details of how agriculture developed, but we can see that the manner in which it developed suggests that it happened inadvertently. It developed for a food that was not a natural part of human diets, and the technology developed at such an incredibly slow rate that the people obviously made no attempt to study or improve their technology.

Nobody thousands of years ago realized that such a thing as "technology" was possible. The adults never encouraged their children to develop new improvements to existing technology. When somebody accidentally created something, such as a sewing needle or a scissors, the people would use it for centuries before somebody discovered a trivial improvement to it. There were no teams of people researching or developing technology; nobody was eagerly anticipating improved versions of their tools. The concept of "New and Improved!" did not exist in that era.

Animals don't have any understanding of the world, and they have no concerns about their lives or the future. Animals merely exist from one day to the next. When humans began developing from monkeys, they would have been as ignorant as the monkeys. Those early humans never contemplated the future or the past. They knew nothing about universe. They could not think very well, anyway, since their brains were not as advanced as ours. Their only concern was to find some food, and then find a place to sleep at night, and then repeat the process the next day.

As humans became more intelligent, they would have started to wonder about the world they live in, but they were so incredibly ignorant that they would not have been able to understand anything. The universe would seem mysterious and dangerous. They would feel weak and helpless. Bad weather could kill them, and animals could eat them. They were also dying for reasons they never understood because they had no concept of bacteria or viruses.

Most of their children were dying, but the adults never would have realized that it was because of the competition for food. Even today we find that many people cannot grasp the concept that starvation is due to excessive population, not a shortage of food. For example, organizations such as the Red Cross are trying to stop starvation by handing out packages of food to hungry people. Since people in our era cannot understand this simple concept, how could people in 20,000 B.C. have figured it out?

If our ignorant ancestors thought about the future, they would have assumed it would be exactly like their present. By comparison, children today are so familiar with the development of technology that they look forward to new products. People today realize that we are capable of creating technology, and we are capable of improving existing technology. We don't expect the future to be a continuation of the present.

To someone in our era, the act of developing new knowledge seems to be an inherent part of human life, but developing technology requires we realize that such a thing is possible, and then we have to learn how to do it. Developing technology requires we follow a complex set of instructions. A "scientist" is not a person; rather, it is some information inside a human mind that tell us how to properly conduct scientific research. The only difference between a scientist of today and a caveman in 20,000 B.C. is the information in their minds. If we could erase the memory of a scientist, he would become a caveman.
 

The transition from cavemen to scientists required thousands of years
When our distant ancestors experienced a problem, such as disease, droughts, or hunger, they tended to react emotionally, such as by crying, or by begging some god to be nicer. Today we react to problems by trying to figure out the cause of the problem, and then we look for a solution. How and why did these attitudes change?

The accumulation of technology started to bring about a change in attitudes. For example, by 2000 BC a lot of inventions relating to fire had accumulated. People in that era knew that fire could transform raw meat into cooked meat, turn wood into a powdery ash, transform a paste of crushed grains into bread, keep metals pliable, transform clay into pottery, and melt copper and tin. The more observant people must have thought to themselves:

"Gosh! Fire can do a lot! I wonder what it will do to this piece of leather, or this tooth, or this cricket."
As technology accumulated, a few of the more observant people began noticing its existence, and their curiosity caused them to wonder if more new ideas were waiting to be discovered. The people had no idea how to develop new technology; they just wondered if more may exist. They did not yet know how to conduct scientific research. As a result, the few of them who made an attempt to discover new technology merely conducted uncontrolled experiments, such as tossing various substances into a fire to see if something happens, or mixing various materials together in an attempt to create a substance that will cure disease.

During the Middle Ages in Europe we find lots of absurd experiments. The painting below, from 1558, is about a man (sitting on a stool, along the right edge of the painting) who is wasting his time and money in an attempt to turn iron into gold, while his wife (behind him) complains that she doesn't have any money. The window (along the left rear) shows the family in the future when it is completely broke and needs handouts to survive.
A site about Alchemy: levity.com/alchemy

Technology developed inadvertently thousands of years ago, whereas today we have meticulous research and development programs. In between those two extremes was a transition period of wild, nearly useless experiments that lasted several thousand years.

Some people suffered during this transition period. For example, some people experimented with mercury and other materials that turned out to be dangerous, and others wasted their money on stupid experiments. However, their crazy experiments helped people learn how to conduct productive experiments.

During the 1700s people were becoming proficient at developing technology. Also, so much technology had accumulated by this time that everybody had noticed it and was aware that people are capable of creating more. The idea of protecting a person's invention, which had been conceived centuries earlier, was developed into a patent office. This encouraged people to create more inventions. By the late 1800s the research and development of technology had become a respected profession.

Two lessons to learn from the development of physical technology are:

1) People had to realize that they have the ability to understand the universe.
Our primitive ancestors believed that they were helpless victims of the universe. They had to realize that they were capable of understanding and controlling the universe.
2) People had to learn how to develop technology.
The human mind is not born knowing how to develop technology. In order for a person to become a scientist or an engineer, he must be provided with certain information.
If those concepts apply to social technology then we can predict:
1) People must realize that we have the ability to understand the human social world.
If people believe that they are helpless to understand human life, they will never have any progress, except inadvertently. We must realize that we can understand and control our societies.
2) People must learn how to develop social technology.
In order to develop social technology, we have to understand what it is and how to develop it. Our schools are currently creating what they refer to as "social scientists", but they have no idea what social technology is or how to develop it. They are analogous to the alchemists of the Middle Ages who would conduct experiments without understanding what they were doing.
What is culture?
Millions of people have already spent a lot of time and effort contemplating human life and that mysterious substance we refer to as "culture", but almost everybody ends up creating minor variations of three theories, none of which can adequately explain the human social world. The three theories are:

1) Humans are creations of a god

According to this theory, the animals and plants are chemical factories that can be explained by science, but humans have a special, mysterious, unexplainable quality that is referred to as a "soul". The badly behaved people have another mysterious, unexplainable quality that is referred to as "evil". According to this theory, the only way to improve the world is to get rid of evil.
2) Humans are like pieces of clay
Some people believe that human minds are like pieces of clay, and that various environmental events shape it. Childhood traumas, divorces, our teachers, and other environmental events supposedly alter our personality and other mental qualities.

According to this theory, a human is supposedly born with the ability to be almost anything he pleases, so what we become depends on our environment. If somebody wants to change the way he is, all he has to do is change his environment.

There are lots of variations of this theory. Freud, for example, said we have mysterious forces in our mind, such as Id and Castration Complex, and these forces influence our behavior. Some women have developed a variation in which femininity and masculinity are caused by the environment, such as dressing girls in pink and giving toy cars to boys. Supposedly a boy can be transformed into a girl, and vice versa, by altering the environment a child is raised in.

This theory explains bad behavior as the result of a bad environment. Supposedly, badly behaved people can become nicely behaved simply by changing their environment, such as through punishment, counseling, or education.

3) Humans are advanced apes
This is the only theory that can explain why human bodies are so similar to monkey bodies, and it explains why occasionally a person is left-handed, or has Tourette's syndrome, or is a Siamese twin.

However, the people who promote this theory have been useless in helping us understand crime, government, legal systems, or schools. Part of the reason seems to be because of our natural arrogance. Biologists are willing to consider a human as a naked ape, but they resist the possibility that an ape is a hairy human; they are willing to consider that a human behaves like an ape, but they don't like to believe that an ape behaves like a human. Biologists prefer to believe that love, hate, anger, revenge, and other emotions are uniquely human.

 
The components of a human body are identical to those of a monkey body.

The only difference between our bodies is that our bones and organs are different shapes and sizes.

There is nothing unique about the human body.


  
Since human bodies are trivial variations of monkey bodies, shouldn't we consider the possibility that our brain is also a trivial variation of a monkey brain?

Every analysis of the human brain shows that it operates in the same manner as a monkey brain; has the same components; and follows the same laws of chemistry and physics. The human brain appears to be just a larger version of a monkey brain. Perhaps the reason our brains seem so similar is because they are very similar.

A monkey brain
and a human brain
The attitude that humans have unique mental qualities is just another variation of the creation theory of Adam and Eve. According to biologists, ape-like Neanderthals dominated the planet about 30,000 years ago, and one day a baby Cro-Magnon boy and girl appeared from nowhere. They grew up, raised children, and became the human race.

Biologists expect us to believe that completely new and unique sequences of DNA appeared suddenly, and this gave humans some mental qualities that had never before existed. While this is possible, we should give serious consideration to the possibility that the qualities we find in our mind are also in the mind of a monkey. In other words, an ape is a stupid human.

The perspective we take when studying a subject can make the difference between success and failure. Our preconceived ideas of what a human is will affect all subsequent research on the subject. If you consider a human to be a creation of a god, for example, you will dismiss evidence that suggests otherwise. If you consider yourself to be completely different from an animal and a Neanderthal, you will ignore all evidence that suggests otherwise.
 

Humans are biological robots
A more useful perspective for studying humans and other animals is that we are "biological robots". Insects are perhaps the easiest to consider as robots. Unfortunately, you will not be able to make much sense out of the robot perspective if you lack a basic understanding of computers and software. Therefore, let me briefly explain a few aspects of computers as they apply to humans and animals.

Software refers to the instructions that a computer can follow. A single instruction by itself has no value, so computers are given lists of instructions. A specific list is referred to as a "computer program", and the programs that are intended for sale are given names, such as "WordPerfect".

A computer program is similar to a list of instructions that a mother may leave for her child:

1. At 3 o'clock put the ham in the oven at 350.
2. Mow the lawn.
3. Clean your bedroom.
4. Take out the garbage.
5. Water the tomato plants in the garden.
The primary difference between a list of instructions that a mother leaves for her child and a list of instructions that is given to a computer is that the instructions for a human are very short and vague, whereas those for a computer must have incredible details because computers don't have any ability to think.

Computers are made up of electrical components that manipulate the flow of electricity. Electricity does not have any intelligence. Electricity is either flowing through a circuit, or it is not flowing. A circuit is either on, or it is off.

 
A computer is as stupid as a slide rule. Neither of these products have any intelligence; rather, both are tools, just like a hammer or a screwdriver. If a tool is doing something intelligent, it is because of the intelligence of the person using the tool.
A computer is capable only of starting and stopping the flow of electricity. In order for a computer to do something useful, a human must figure out how to send pulses of electricity through the circuits in such a manner that something useful occurs. When a computer does something intelligent, you are actually observing the intelligence of the computer programmer.

The first electronic computers, such as the ENIAC of the 1940's, were "programmed" by a team of people who set 3000 switches and wiring connections. The photo below shows three women setting the switches and cables.
Some historical info: ei.cs.vt.edu/~history/ENIAC.Richey.HTML

 
The ENIAC computer was used to solve math problems. By altering the switches and cables on the computer, they could change the sequence of pulses that were sent into the computer, and how those pulses flowed through the vacuum tubes. Every time they wanted to solve a different math problem, somebody had to figure out how to set the switches and wires so that the computer would solve the new problem.

It was not easy to figure out how to set the switches and wires to solve a math problem, but once everything was set and the electricity was turned on, the computer could solve complicated math problems much faster than somebody with a paper and pencil.

Today a tiny integrated circuit has more computing power than the gigantic ENIAC. The integrated circuit works on the exact same principles, but it replaces vacuum tubes, switches, and cables with microscopic components.

The most important change that has been made since the ENIAC is that people no longer have to manually set switches or cables. Modern computers are designed so that the switches are set by software.

Since a computer only understands on and off, software provides a sequence of on and off signals to the computer. If you were to write software on paper and represent the on and off signals with ones and zeros, all software would look like a meaningless sequence of ones and zeros:

1010101000010101011110001001010100010


Those ones and zeros are processed in groups, such as 16 or 32 at a time. When you start a software program, the computer reads the first group of ones and zeros, and that turns a group of transistors on or off, which causes electricity to flow or not flow through various wires in the integrated circuit. Then the computer will read another group of ones and zeros, and that gives the transistors a different sequence of on and off settings, changing the flow of electricity through the circuits.

If you find it hard to believe that meaningless pulses of electricity can do something intelligent, just think of how this concept could be applied to an Abacus. In this photograph, the Abacus has 12 columns and 7 rows of slidable rings with 2 empty rows. You could solve complicated math problems without knowing what you are doing if somebody provided you with a set of instructions on how to move the rings. The instruction sheet could be visual, and it could use a zero to represent a ring and a dash to represent an empty space, such as this:
Step 1: Reset the abacus
--- ------ ---
000 000000 000
000 000000 000

--- ------ ---
000 000000 000
000 000000 000
000 000000 000
000 000000 000
000 000000 000

Step two: shift these three gaps

--- ------ --0
000 000000 00-
000 000000 000

--- ---0-0 ---
000 000000 000
000 00000- 000
000 000-00 000
000 000000 000
000 000000 000

In this example, each step would be a group of zeros and dashes. You would "process" all of the zeros and dashes in one step before you moved to the next step. Then you would process the zeros and dashes in the next step, and so on. At the end of all the instructions, you would have the answer to a math problem. You could refer to this list as Abacus software. You could refer to each step as an instruction.

This type of software would be similar to what the ENIAC computer was programed with. It would be very inflexible. You have to write new software for every math problem.

A computer operates on a similar principle. It reads a group of ones and zeros, but instead of sliding the rings of an Abacus, it sets transistors to either on or off. Each of these groups of ones and zeros is referred to as an instruction. To make a computer more versatile, it does not necessarily read the instructions in sequential order. Depending on the results of one particular instruction, it may jump to another part of the software and start reading instructions from that location.

As you can imagine, It would be extremely irritating to write computer software using ones and zeros. To make software development more practical, different people created different computer languages that more closely resemble human languages. Each of these computer languages had a small number of "words" that represented a sequence of ones and zeros.

A person selects one of the computer languages and then develops a computer program using the words in that particular language. When he is finished, his words are translated into ones and zeros. A computer program does the translation since no human would want to do it. This type of computer program could be referred to as a translator, but somebody decided to refer to it as a compiler instead.

You could write Abacus software using words, also. In example above, a person could write the word Reset for Step 1 instead of all of those zeros and dashes, and later that word would be translated into that group of zeros and dashes.

Computer programs are best understood when you think of them as lists of instructions. They are similar to the list a mother might leave her child, if her child was incredibly stupid:

1. Sit in a chair at the kitchen table.
2. Look at the clock on the wall.
3. If it is less than 3:00 PM, go to instruction #2
4. Walk over to the refrigerator.
5. Open refrigerator by pulling handle of door.
While you and I would consider such a list to be detailed to an absurd extent, that list doesn't have anywhere near enough detail to control a robot. Once you realize that a computer is as stupid as an Abacus, you will have a better understanding of how difficult it is to develop robots that talk and walk.
 
Calculators and Computers
When you buy a calculator, you simply turn it on and it is immediately ready and able to perform math. You don't have to buy any software for it. Calculators come off the assembly line knowing everything they need to know. A calculator will not even accept software. Calculators are inflexible.

By comparison, a computer is incapable of doing anything when it comes off the assembly line. Somebody has to install software in the computer before it can do something. This ability to accept software makes a computer extremely versatile.

The hardware of a computer and a pocket calculator are identical. If you open up both types of products, and examine their electronic circuits, you would find the exact same transistors, resistors, capacitors, and other components. You would discover that both the calculator and a computer perform arithmetic in the exact same manner. Both devices understand only that electricity is either flowing, or it isn't; a circuit is either on, or it is off.

One difference between a calculator and a computer is that a computer has a lot more components. The extra components provide the computer with a very large memory, whereas an inexpensive calculator has only enough memory to keep track of one number.

Both a computer and a calculator process instructions. However, the list of instructions that a calculator follows are built into its circuitry by the manufacturer, and the calculator is not designed to accept any other instructions. The factory does the equivalent of setting the switches and wires of the ENIAC computer. This makes the calculator "born" knowing exactly what to do and how to do it.

A computer is also "born" with instructions, but computers are provided only the most basic instructions, such as how to perform math, how to use a keyboard, and how to transfer data from a disk drive. In a sense, a computer is given only the instructions necessary to keep its heart beating. These instructions are often described as the firmware of a computer. In order for a computer to be useful, we have to provide it with additional lists of instructions, which today are usually sold on CD-ROM.

By designing a computer to accept instructions, a computer is extremely flexible. If a computer is provided with advanced software, it will be able to do a tremendous amount of work. However, if the person who designed the software is not very good at it, the software will perform so badly that you are better off not using it at all. Or if the software was designed by a malicious programmer, then running the software could erase your files or scramble your data. The software is the most important aspect of a computer.
 

Understanding computers will help you understand calculators
If an electrical engineer was taught only how to design and program computers, he would be able to easily and quickly learn how to design a calculator.

By comparison, if an engineer was taught only how to design a simple calculator, he would have to learn a lot more to be able to design and program computers.

This concept also applies to aircraft, also. If an aircraft engineer is taught how to design a large, commercial aircraft, and he will be able to easily and quickly learn how to design a single-engine private plane. However, if he is only taught is how to make a single-engine private plane, then he will have a lot to learn in order to design a large, commercial aircraft.

It takes a lot more time and effort to understand computers and commercial aircraft than it does to learn about calculators and single-engine planes. However, once somebody learns the more complex version of a product, he will be able to easily understand the simpler version of that product.

If this concept applies to living creatures, then we could easily understand animals if we can figure out the more complex humans, but understanding an animal will give us only a partial understanding of ourselves.

Biologists are telling us the exact opposite; namely, that we can understand humans by studying animals, but we cannot understand animals by looking at humans.
 

Advanced animals require "culture"
A caterpillar knows how to take care of itself as soon as it comes out of its egg. A caterpillar raised in isolation behaves the same as caterpillars raised with other caterpillars. The obvious conclusion is that caterpillars don't learn anything from other caterpillars. They are the equivalent of calculators that are programmed at the factory.

By comparison, a monkey raised in isolation will not behave the same as other monkeys. The obvious conclusion is that young monkeys pick up an intangible substance from other monkeys. Once you accept the fact that a monkey is a stupid human, you will understand that the baby monkeys are picking up that mysterious substance we refer to as "information", "knowledge", "education", "culture", or "skills". A monkey does not acquire very much culture, but monkeys do have culture.

If a baby human were raised in isolation, it would not pick up a language, arithmetic, science, engineering, music, carpentry, or plumbing. It would appear to be just an intelligent monkey. Without culture, a human would operate only on the instructions that were programmed into our brain by our DNA. These instructions are analogous to the firmware of a computer. They give us our animal-like qualities, such as causing us to put things in our mouth when we are hungry, and spit them out if they taste bad. Without culture, a human behaves according to his firmware, and that will cause him to closely resemble a monkey.

The brains of humans and monkeys are very similar. Both of us must acquire information during our childhood in order to fit in with our societies. However, the monkey does not have a large memory, so it cannot hold very much culture.

Our ancestors in 20,000 BC did not have very much culture. They lived and behaved in a manner very similar to monkeys. The most significant difference between people then and people today is that people today have a lot more information inside their memories. This allows us to do activities that were impossible centuries ago, such as driving automobiles, operating computers, and discussing whether we should bomb Iran's nuclear facilities.
 

Human software programs
The concept that humans need information in their minds is nothing new, so what is the value of this robot perspective? Only that it does a better job of explaining what that "information" is: it is the biological equivalent of computer software; it is instructions that we follow in order to accomplish some task.

Government systems, holiday celebrations, monetary systems, and other aspects of human "culture" are the human version of computer software; they are packages of instructions that humans follow in order to accomplish some task. However, you do not refer to them as "instructions"; instead you refer to them as customs, traditions, laws, morals, rules, ethics, standards, beliefs, and regulations. Nor do you think of them as "packages" or "sets". And you do not consider yourself to follow them in order to "accomplish some task"; instead, you assume you follow them in order to avoid jail or criticism, or to be polite and helpful, or to have fun, or because your ancestors have done so for an eternity.

Perhaps the simplest example of a human following a set of instructions is a woman following a recipe in a cookbook. In her memory are stored hundreds of recipes, and she has thousands more written in books. Books are an external storage device; the human equivalent of CD ROMs.

When a woman wants to make a meal she searches through the recipes in her mind, and perhaps through those in her external storage, until she finds one that appeals to her and that she has the ingredients for. Then she loads the instructions into the processing center of her mind and executes them. And why does she follow those instructions? Simply to "accomplish a task".

When people make pottery they are also following a list of instructions in order to accomplish a task. The list began to develop sometime around 7000 BC when people discovered that roasting certain types of mud create a hard and durable material. This instruction package tells us what types of material to use to make the clay; how much water to add; how to shape it into useful forms; how to bake it; and thousands of other details. The original package of instructions and 7000 B.C. was very simple and crude, but today it is extremely detailed.

Likewise, when people make iron or grow cotton they are following sets of instructions, some of which began development in prehistoric times. All of these "cultural activities" could be described as "human software" because they are sets of instructions.

It is fairly easy to realize that a woman who is baking a cake is following a set of instructions because cake is tangible and the instructions are clearly written down on paper. We can watch her read an instruction, execute it, read the next instruction, and so on. We can easily understand that she is manipulating raw materials through a set of previously developed procedures.

However, is not so easy to realize that governments, holidays, or schools are also sets of instructions because those things are much more complex. And it is not as easy to realize that the paper the Constitution is written on is just the human version of a floppy disk, and that the words in the Constitution are a set of instructions that provide organization to a group of humans, just as MS-DOS and other operating systems provides organization to the components of a computer.

Money is another example of a set of instructions that is difficult to recognize as instructions. Money seems to be a very real substance, but only coins, checks, and credit cards are tangible. Money itself is just a set of instructions somewhere inside our mind. Those instructions dictate how the coins and other objects are to be used. If it were possible to erase only that set of instructions from your memory, you would continue to be the same person and live the exact same life, but money would have no meaning to you.

A construction crew is another example of a human software package. If you have ever watched a construction crew put up a building you may have been amazed at how well they coordinate their efforts. The men appear to be doing whatever they please, but as a building slowly rises from the ground we realize that they are somehow coordinated in a manner that no animals are capable of.

Ants and bees may appear to be similar to human construction crews, but they are very different. Only humans can vary the type of structures they create, deal with unexpected problems, and buy and sell the structures. Ants and bees can build only one type of structure, and if anything unexpected happens they will not be able to deal with it. How do humans achieve such behavior? What exactly is a construction crew, and how does it function as a unit?

Most people assume a construction crew is a group of men following orders from a "boss," but that is not a complete answer. For example, why do the men follow the boss? How does the boss know what to do?

A construction crew is just a package of software. In each man's mind is a set of instructions that tell them they are in a hierarchy and that each man has a specific role in the hierarchy. They listen to their boss because they were instructed to do so. They work on certain days and for certain hours because they were instructed to do so.

The structure they create is another set of instructions; a set developed by architects and engineers. This set is too complex to keep in our memory or describe in words, so it is written on paper as "contracts" and "blueprints" to make sure everyone clearly understands them.

An assembly line is also a package of human software. The men are tangible, and so are their tools, but the "assembly line" is just some instructions inside their mind. If we could go into their minds and erase those particular instructions, the men would become individuals who have no idea that they are supposed to be working together. And if we could erase the part of their memory that tells them how to use their tools, they wouldn't know what their tools were. Compare that to ants and bees who are born knowing how to construct a home for themselves, and who do not have a memory to erase.

One final example of a set of instructions that you may not recognize as such is the driving of cars. Nobody could even open a car door if his memory was blank. Driving a car requires following a lot of instructions. We must learn where in the car to sit; what to do with the keys; what the various dials and knobs do; where on the street to drive; what to do when we see certain types of colored lights; and what to do when we hear a siren. We use those instructions to guide our behavior as we drive. As we see various lights, road signs, other cars, and pedestrians, our mind scans its memory for the appropriate instruction, and then we follow that instruction. Of course, unlike a computer, we have emotions that try to influence our decisions, so sometimes we don't follow the instructions exactly.
 

Social Systems
When humans engage in what we call "cultural activities," what we are doing is following the human equivalent of computer programs. Our DNA built into our brain only a few simple activities, such as crawling, pouting, walking, and eating, but by creating and following man-made packages of instructions we can do much more. We could refer to these instructions as human software, social technology, or social systems.

Just as we do with computer programs, we could give our social systems a name, copyright them, and sell them to other nations. For example, the system that we use to regulate automobile traffic, (ie, drivers licenses, street signs, traffic rules) could be given a silly name, such as "Traffic Master" and we could boast to other nations that they will reduce their traffic problems and accidents if they install our system into the minds of their citizens.

Furthermore, although it would have no value other than to emphasize the similarities between human minds and computers, we could write our transportation system exactly like a computer program, and we could even teach it to children in this form:

1 REM ******* TRAFFIC MASTER ********
3 REM *     1985 by the USA
5 REM *
7 REM * PROGRAM 1. How To Drive A Car
9 REM *******************************
10 open left car door
20 if locked, go to line 500
30 sit in seat
40 find ignition key
50 if not found, go to line 1200
60 insert key in ignition
As we improve the traffic system, we could sell updates to other nations. As with software, we could call the updates TRAFFIC MASTER version 2, TRAFFIC MASTER version 3, etc.

It may seem silly to sell something like a traffic system, but social technology takes a lot of time and effort to develop, and a lot of mistakes are made in the process. Therefore, a nation will benefit greatly by buying an advanced system, thereby bypassing the process of developing it themselves.

At the moment it would be difficult for a nation to sell social technology because only a few people are aware of this concept. The people who develop our transportation system, for example, don't understand what they're doing. In fact, America does not even have "a transportation system". Rather, different states within America have slightly different instructions regulating traffic and drivers licenses. The people creating our traffic system don't fully understand what they're doing (or they don't care), so they don't coordinate with one another.
 

Your software is what makes you appear better from an ape
Every time you use money, celebrate a holiday, conduct a scientific experiment, and make a sandwich you are behaving like a robot that is following a list of instructions that it picked up from other robots. Human culture is whatever those instructions are. A human nation is a collection of biological robots united together and supervised by all the intangible social systems we carry around inside our heads.

If it were possible to erase the memory of every human on the planet, all advanced activities would immediately cease. Every human would appear to be nothing more than an intelligent ape. All of us would become speechless creatures capable only of simple emotional noises, and we would have no idea what any of the material goods in our environment are.

A lot of people assume that the difference between an ape and a human is that we have some special qualities, such as souls, or intelligence. However, the most significant difference between us is that our minds are capable of holding an enormous amount of that intangible substance we refer to as "culture". Apes also have culture, but their culture is much simpler because their mind is not capable of memorizing or following complex lists of instructions.
 

Hardware vs. Software Improvements
There are two distinct ways to improve computers: we can improve the hardware, or we can improve the software. We want progress in both areas, of course, but we want most of our effort to go into software development. Software is by far the most significant aspect of a computer; it virtually determines what a computer can do.

As strange as it may seem, we would not benefit much if a Martian were to give us some incredibly advanced computer hardware if the only software we could run on it is the crude word processors and spreadsheets we find in retail stores today. The advanced Martian hardware would never be able to reach the potential it is capable of.

However, if a Martian were to write some advanced software for our primitive computers, the computers we have right now would be able to do a lot more. The computer hardware we have right now is capable of doing much more than it currently does.

It takes a long time to develop computer software, so it's going to take a long time before we reach the limit for the computer hardware we have today. However, by the time we reach that limit, computer hardware will be more advanced. The end result is that software is always lagging behind the computer hardware.

This concept applies to construction crews, also. The tools they have right now are capable of building much nicer cities, but they don't have the blueprints; they don't have the set of instructions on what to do with those tools. If a Martian were to provide a construction crew with some very advanced blueprints, we could have some amazing cities.
 

Have we Reached the Limit of Human Potential?
These same concepts apply to human minds. There are two methods to improve the human world: we can improve our hardware (i.e., breed more "intelligent" people), or we can improve our software.

Unlike computers, improving biological hardware is extremely time consuming because biological hardware improves only through random changes in chromosomes. If engineers had to develop improvements to computers by making random changes to their blueprints, it would take thousands of years to bring minor improvements to a computer.

The easiest and quickest way to improve the human world is to improve the software that is running inside everybody's mind. At the other extreme, the way to ruin the human world is to raise children on self-destructive culture.

If you have trouble understanding these concepts, imagine if a Martian spacecraft were to crash on the earth, and all of the Martians die except for one young baby. That Martian baby would have to grow up among humans. It would initially pick up the same disorganized hodgepodge of primitive culture that fills human minds today. When the Martian became a teenager, it would start to think for itself, and it would wonder if men and women truly are a unisex creature; whether Apollo astronauts really did land on the moon; whether 6 million Jews really did die in the Nazi death camps; and whether Al Qaeda terrorists really were responsible for the the September 11 attack. The Martian would waste a lot of its adult life trying to correct the idiotic beliefs and propaganda that it picked up from us during its childhood. Superior people need superior software in order to realize the potential their minds are capable of.

Software is by far the most significant aspect of a human. The information in our minds virtually determines what our world is like. The primary difference between people today and our ancestors is that we have better information in our minds.

What are the chances that we today have reached the limits of the human hardware? Certainly our hardware is capable of more than what we use it for today. Certainly we can advance beyond this primitive existence.
 

Patriots or Fools?
It is a well known fact that computer software can and should be improved. This is why computer companies around the world are frantically competing with each other to produce the most advanced software. They employ thousands of people and spend millions of dollars a year on the research and development of software.

Only a fool would resist this software development and insist we cling to our original software from 1950. Only a fool would claim that computers are at their limit of productivity and that we should stop trying to improve them. We all want progress in computer software.

However, the opposite is true with human software. No nation is employing anybody or spending any money to research or develop human culture. No frantic race is occurring between nations to develop the most advanced government system, school system, or city. No person anywhere waits impatiently for advances in his culture. Quite the contrary! Most people insist it is "patriotic" to cling onto the culture a nation was founded with.

We would consider the British to be fools if they considered it patriotic to use the original computer software first developed in the 1950's; why are they not fools for considering it patriotic to follow a government system and other social systems that date from the Middle Ages? You would consider your fellow Americans to be fools if they insisted it is patriotic to use the transportation devices of the 1700s; why are they not fools for insisting it is patriotic to use only the social systems that date from that era?

Culture is "human software", and as soon as people understand this, an entirely new future opens up for mankind: specifically, we could research and develop culture. We could compete with each other to invent the best improvements to the social systems we live by. Who knows what the human world would be like after a few centuries of serious attempts to improve our culture. Or is such a thing impossible? Am I the fool to suggest it?
 

People have been modifying culture for selfish reasons
Religious, government, and business leaders have been trying to modify culture for thousands of years, although they never completely understood what they were doing. They thought of themselves as "making money", or "manipulating the stupid people", but what they were actually doing was modifying human software.

For example, the editor of a newspaper is supposedly the first person to promote Mother-in-Law's Day, perhaps in the hope of titillating the public to either increase the circulation of his newspaper, or improve his image. The greeting card companies created cards for Mother-In-Law's Day, and pushed this new cultural activity on the public, in order to increase their profits.

That mysterious substance we call "culture" can indeed be studied and developed, and it can even be bought and sold. Unfortunately, as of today, the only people who are trying to modify our culture are doing so for selfish reasons, not to help the human race.
 

We can improve our culture as soon as we realize it is possible to do so
At the moment, everybody considers their particular culture to be the best. As a result, when somebody suggests improving their culture, people consider the idea crazy, unpatriotic, or traitorous. We must consider all of our social systems to be like text editing software; specifically, that it needs to be improved.

A lot of Americans are aware that the country is having problems, but the typical solution is to boast that the Constitution is the greatest document ever written, and suggest that we can fix our problems by going back to what the Constitution originally was. Supposedly, the laws that have been added during the past two centuries have been ruining the Constitution.

Proposing that we return to a government system that was created 200 years ago is as ridiculous as somebody proposing that we return to the original software of the 1950s. These proposals show that people have the wrong attitude towards social technology. We will not improve our governments, schools, or cities by going back in time to the more primitive versions. In order to make our government better, we have to study the issue of government and learn from our mistakes. We must develop something better.
 

It's impossible to develop the ultimate government system
A common and destructive attitude is that somebody is capable of creating the ultimate government or other social technology. For example, the idea that 55 Americans in 1789 could have created the ultimate government system is absurd. There is always a gradual change from one thing to another; everything is a spectrum from one extreme to another. There are no dividing lines between anything, not even between male and female.

What this means is that it is impossible for the American constitution to be the ultimate government system. Instead, it is simply a part of the spectrum in the development of government systems; it is merely a change from some previous government system.

If we considered an automobile, railroad, or computer to be the ultimate, we wouldn't make any attempt to improve upon it. Likewise, when we consider a government or other social system to be the ultimate, we won't bother trying to improve upon it.


 

The best we can do is make improvements
It is impossible for a scientist to make a sudden leap in knowledge. The best a scientist can do is to make improvements to the knowledge that he learned from other people.

No society suddenly advanced from walking on two legs to riding in horse drawn chariots. No society suddenly leaped from riding in horse drawn chariots to flying in airplanes. Transportation technology improved very slowly. Each scientist and engineer could only add to the work of previous people. The only way a society can make sudden leaps in physical technology is when they learn the technology from a more advanced society.

The same is true of social technology. No society suddenly leaped from bartering to using an advanced banking system. No society suddenly jumped from illiteracy to an advanced school system. Nor did any society leap into advanced city planning, legal systems, or patent offices. All social technology developed and improved slowly. The only way a society can make sudden leaps in social development is if a more advanced society teaches them.
 

The decimal system was a recent invention
An example of how each person can only add a little bit to what has already been created is the decimal system. Thousands of years ago people developed numbers, (ie, 1,2,3, and 4), and some unknown time later people developed the concept of fractions. However, prior to the 1600s, nobody would have understood a price tag of $19.50 because the concept of a decimal point had not been created yet. Throughout most of human existence the only known way to represent parts of numbers was with fractions, often fractions of 60 or 360. People preferred fractions of 60 because 60 is a number that is easily divided into halves, thirds, fourths, fifths, sixths, and several other units.

It was not until the past few centuries that mankind advanced beyond fractions. One person who played a role in this advancement was Simon Stevin. In 1585 he wrote a small booklet advocating the representation of fractions as units of tenths, hundredths, and other multiples of ten. He did not conceive the idea of a decimal point; rather, he just wanted all fractions to be based on units of ten rather than units of 60 or some other unit.

However, he did not propose writing the fractions in the typical manner such as 1/10 to 3/100. Instead, since all of the units were multiples of 10, he suggesting writing only the numerator and a number to represent which multiple of 10 it referred to. For example, he would represent 25.306 as 250 31 63, and a price of $32.95 would be $320 91 52.

As you can guess, not many people were interested in his "improvement" over fractions. However, his concept of discarding the denominator of the fraction and representing the fraction as multiples of 10 caused some people to think about the issue, and somebody soon conceived of the idea of putting a decimal point between the integer portion and the fractional portion, and of using a zero to represent nothing.

The concept of decimal points spread rapidly around the world. Actually, in some nations, such as Germany, they don't use a decimal point; rather, they use a comma, and they use a decimal point where we use a comma. For example, 12,345.67 in America would be 12.345,67 in Germany.

The development of the decimal system is an example of how nothing develops suddenly. Changes are gradual; the best anybody can do is improve upon the work of other people. A review of the American government system should help explain how it was actually just a variation of other primitive governments of that era, and that we are fools to continue following it.
 

America's government was a modification of previous governments
America became an independent nation in an era when slavery was still active in many nations, and Plato was still the undisputed authority of governments. The Americans believed that they were forming the greatest society possible, but that was impossible.

All of the governments created as of 1776 had been very crude. There was no way the Americans could have leaped from those primitive governments into the ultimate government system. Rather, the best the Americans could achieve was a somewhat less crummy government system; a slight improvement over the existing governments. The history of America shows that this is exactly what happened.

America declared its independence in 1776, and there were battles between the British and the Americans over the next five years. As with all primitive people, it never occurred to the Americans to design a government system before they became independent. Primitive people never prepare for the future; rather, like a child running away from home, they just do it. The leaders of the revolt did not begin to design a new government until the war of independence was in progress.

The British had provided each of the 13 colonies with a simple government, but the nation of America had no leadership. Each state actually became an independent nation in 1776. Each state took control of its colonial government and modified it slightly to suit their tastes, such as prohibiting the government from torturing prisoners and from interfering with religion. Each state acted on its own as if it was an independent nation. When the states wanted to deal with a national issue, such as creating a national government, they had to call a meeting and send representatives to it, just as primitive tribes held meetings.

By 1777 a group of state representatives had designed what they thought was a national government for America. They called it the Articles of Confederation. They submitted this system to the states for approval. Years later, in 1781, the last state agreed to follow this system and it finally went into effect. By this time America desperately needed a national government. The only thing that was keeping the 13 states united was the war with England, but the war was ending this year. Also, many states were having serious economic problems.

The Articles of Confederation was supposed to unite the thirteen groups of people into a single nation and create a national government to take care of their problems, but it quickly proved to be a failure. For one thing, the Articles did not unite the states at all. The ignorant people who created the Articles wrote that: "Each state retains its sovereignty, freedom, and independence". America was hardly a united nation when each state was sovereign, free, and independent! Some high school students today are capable of creating a more sensible government.

The national government created by the Articles was composed of a group of delegates selected each year by the states. That type of government is like the United Nations organization; i.e., it is just a meeting place for different societies to discuss their problems. The Articles of Confederation did not, and could not, give such a government any authority to do anything. Each state was free to create their own money, to raise and equip their own military force, and to ignore the national government. The states were so independent that they could - and some actually did - create trade barriers against each other, just like selfish nations having temper tantrums. The national government was not allowed to tax the citizens so it was supposed to get its operating money from the states, but the states did not have to give any money if they did not want to.

The Articles of Confederation was actually just a declaration of friendship between the different states; it was not a national government. In fact, the Articles even declared this to be the case: "The said states hereby severally enter into a firm league of friendship with each other". The Articles just set up a vague alliance between thirteen different nations.

Like all people, the founders of America thought of themselves as highly educated people who knew all about life. They assumed they were living in an advanced, "modern" era. The same problem occurs with people today; we think of ourselves as wealthy, educated, and "modern". We don't realize that our material goods and lifestyle will be condemned as crude, violent, and miserable to people in the distant future.

There are no lawyers today who understand the purpose of a law, and in 1776 the ignorance about laws was even more extreme. They also had less of an understanding of language. As a result, it is extremely difficult to make sense of the Articles of Confederation. For example:

"The united states in congress assembled shall also have the sole and exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the respected states...."
That sentence seems to give the national government the authority to create coins and regulate their value, as well as regulate the value of the coins produced by each state. But in a long, one sentence paragraph listing off the things the national government cannot do:
"The united states in congress assembled shall never...coin money, nor regulate the value thereof...."
So, could the government create or regulate money? The Articles of Confederation was worthless. Even with that "government" the nation was not a united nation but thirteen independent societies, between which there was considerable distrust and quarreling. And each year their problems grew worse. By 1783 there were over a dozen different currencies in use in America because each state was free to create its own money. Since they could create as much money as they desired, most of it was becoming worthless.

By 1786 the economy of the states was suffering. Unemployment was becoming a serious problem, and is not easy to create unemployment when most of the population is self-employed farmers. In other words, the American government was beyond merely lousy; it was terrible. There was not much cooperation between the states. International trade was difficult because each state was behaving like an independent nation. The infant American society was facing its first major catastrophe. Some English citizens were snickering, and some Americans were embarrassed.

Americans criticize communist nations for ignoring embarrassing aspects of their history, but Americans do the exact same thing when they discuss American history between 1776 and 1789. America's first government was a disaster, and America almost self-destructed during this period.

A meeting of the states was held in 1786 to discuss America's problems. As happened at so many other meetings, only a few representatives showed up. Americans love to boast about their "founding fathers", but the evidence suggests that they were not as responsible, intelligent, or educated as we like to believe they were.

The few representatives who showed up at the 1786 meeting decided to cancel the meeting and try holding another meeting the next year; in May of 1787. They were planning to make some improvements to the Articles of Confederation. Supposedly Version 2.0 of the Articles of Confederation was going to be the bug-free government the nation needed.

America's problems grew worse during the following months. Some citizens even staged a rebellion against their state government. Some Americans were wondering if breaking away from England was a good idea. America's problems were becoming so severe that twelve out of the thirteen states decided to send representatives to the May 1787 meeting. However, they were not so concerned about America that the representatives were punctual. Instead, most representatives arrived weeks late, and some never showed up. The meeting was delayed almost two weeks while they waited for about half of the representatives to arrive. Eventually 55 representatives showed up.

At the meeting the representatives decided that the Articles of Confederation was hopeless and should be discarded. They decided to design a completely new government system. This time they decided to put more thought and effort into it. They decided to study the subject of governments before creating a new one. This was one of mankind's first attempts to design a government through research and development.

Unfortunately, there was not much knowledge about governments for them to study. The ancient Greeks and Romans were the best source of knowledge about governments in 1789! As a result, they looked through some of the remarks about government from the ancient Greeks and Romans, and they looked at the governments of Europe. They tried to learn a little bit about governments before creating a new one.

When they were finished developing the Constitution, they were proud to announce that it was based on ancient writings, but that is actually something to be embarrassed about. It is a sign that Europeans had not learned anything about governments during all the centuries following the Greek and Roman societies.
 

Culture is not wine; it doesn't improve with age
Imagine a carpenter building a house for you and proudly announcing that the house is based on prehistoric Greek technology. Or how about a dentist proudly announcing that he just fixed your teeth based on ancient Roman technology? What would you think if Microsoft announced some new scientific software that was based on the switches and cabling diagrams of the ENIAC computer of the 1940s?

The attitude towards culture is that it cannot be improved. Therefore, if a government system is based on something from ancient Greece, it must be wonderful.
 

The creators of the Constitution were fearful of governments
Government had a bad reputation in the 18th century, but most people realized that they had to have one for some mysterious reason. And by 1787 America's leaders realized that it had to have more authority than the Articles of Confederation. However, they did not understand why they needed a government. As a result, they designed their Constitution from the point of view that government was a necessary evil; a monster that must be kept under control. They did not design the Constitution from the point of view of how to best manage and unify the American society.

The writers of the Constitution wanted the government to be made up of representatives of the citizens because they assumed that a government of representatives would serve the public rather than behave in whatever selfish manner they pleased. They wanted their government to be a "public servant," not a leader or a supervisor. So, just like the Articles of Confederation, the Constitution set up a government of representatives.

To prevent the government from getting too much control over the citizens, the authority in the government was deliberately divided up among all representatives in such a manner that no government official had much authority to do anything.
 

Selfishness interfered with the development of the Constitution
Creating the Constitution was difficult because each of the 13 states thought of themselves as an independent nation, and they selfishly wanted the Constitution designed to suit their state. For example, the small states wanted all the states to have equal representation in government, but the large states wanted representation to be based on the population of the state.

The representatives could not ignore state boundaries and consider themselves as citizens of a single nation. They could not design a government from the point of view of what is best for the American people. Rather, they behaved as if they were members of ignorant tribes who were forming a possibly dangerous alliance.

The problem of representation was resolved by creating a government that was a variation of the English government. Specifically, the government was split into halves. In one half, the House of Representatives, each state was represented according to their population, and in the other half, the Senate, each state had equal representation.

The problem of how to count the population caused more idiotic arguments. The population had to be counted accurately because each state was going to get representation in government according to their population. However, there were a lot of slaves in America, most of which were in the South. About one third of the Southern population was slaves. Should slaves be counted as "people", or should slaves be considered "property"?

If slaves are people, then the southern states would get more representation in government than they would otherwise get. The southern states said that slaves were people; the northern states complained that slaves should be considered property.

To further complicate this issue, each state was supposed to give tax money to the national government according to their population. If slaves are people, then the southern states would have to give more money to the federal government. The southern states said slaves were not people for tax purposes, but the northern states said that is the only time the slaves were people! The "founding fathers" were behaving like obnoxious, selfish brats who were twisting the rules of the game to suit their selfish desires.

The issue of slavery was finally resolved when they agreed to consider a slave to be equal to 3/5ths of a person for both taxation and representation. Eventually the representatives resolved all of their arguments and the Constitution was completed. They decided that the new government will go into effect if nine of the thirteen states approve it.

About a year later nine states had approved it, and so it went into effect. George Washington became the first president. However, one of the first problems the President had to deal with was to convince the remaining states to agree to follow the Constitution. Two of the remaining states were complaining that they wanted a "Bill Of Rights" to prevent the national government from abusing the citizens.
 

The Bill Of Rights was added afterwards
Many Americans hold up the "Bill of Rights" as the greatest part of the Constitution, but it was not part of the Constitution. The writers of the Constitution had decided not to include a bill of rights for various reasons. After the Constitution went into effect, a couple of the states refused to follow it until a Bill of Rights was added. Eventually the government officials gave in and a bill of rights was written and added to the Constitution as amendments.

By 1790 all the states agreed to the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, and so we could say that 1790 was the beginning of the America as we know it today. Americans declared their independence in 1776 but it took them about 14 years of fumbling around before they had implemented a government that was capable of managing their society.

I mentioned before that the best a society can do is bring slight improvements to existing technology. Looking at the Constitution shows how true that is. It ended up being just a modification of England's government, which in turn developed during the last centuries of the Middle Ages as the people tried to acquire some control over the kings. Let's review this.
 

The Development of the representative government
During the Middle Ages, the King (or Queen) was the dictatorial ruler of his region. The people in his kingdom would sometimes ask him for certain policies or favors. Because it was difficult to travel in that era, people began selecting somebody to serve as a representative, and the representative would make the trip to the King.

The concept of sending representatives to the King spread throughout Europe. Eventually this concept evolved into a job in which a person goes back and forth between the King and the people he represents. This in turn evolved into a government that consists of representatives who try to influence the leader.

After people began settling into large cities, they started segregating into two main groups. The smaller group consisted of people in leadership positions and business, and the larger group was everybody else, most of whom were farmers. This division between people caused the representatives to separate into two primary groups; one group represented the wealthy, and the other group represented the common people.

The men who designed the Constitution took this concept of two groups of representatives, and they decided that one group will represent the people (the Representatives), and the other group will represent the states (the Senators).

However, the resulting government doesn't actually make sense because the ordinary voter selects both senators and representatives. Therefore, both groups are representing the voters; neither of them represents the "states".

How can a government be designed so that a "state" is represented? A state is an intangible concept; an arbitrary boundary. States are not creatures with desires.

You might think that the state government could select the Senators, but this would not provide representation for the "state", either. Rather, in this case the Senators would represent the state government officials, who in turn were selected by the voters, which means that the voters were still in control of the Senate, but indirectly. There is no sensible way to give representation to an intangible concept.

The concept of representing a state is especially ridiculous in our era because people and businesses often move from one state to another. What exactly is being represented when we represent a "state"?

No matter how you look at it, the concept of representing a "state" is stupid. The concept of states is also self-destructive because it encourages the people within a state to think of themselves as better than the people in other states. It doesn't help to unify the nation; rather, it helps to break it down.
 

America's Civil War
By 1860 most nations had prohibited slavery. The northern states of America also wanted to stop it but the southern states wanted to keep slavery active. In 1860, some of the people in the southern states decided to leave America.

The Constitution was designed from the point of view that government is a wild animal that needs to be under control, so the federal government was not given much authority. Furthermore, the Constitution encouraged the people to think of themselves as members of their particular state, not members of America. To make the problem of unification worse, as new land was added to America, it was added in the form of new states.

The lack of unity and the feeling of independence was so extreme that the southern states did not even bother to get together and declare their independence together. Instead, one state simply announced that it was leaving America, and later another state would decide to leave America. The states were behaving like primitive people casually walking away from a campfire to start their own camp. The mayor of New York City even suggested that his city consider seceding from America and becoming independent! It is possible that if nothing had been done to stop this, America would have broken down into thousands of independent nations.

By early 1861 some of the independent southern states decided to form a new society, which they called the Confederate States of America. As would be expected, their new nation had no unity either. Their new government was very similar to the Constitution. Soon other states joined the Confederacy.

The people in control of the northern states did not want the Southern states to form a new nation, so in April 1861 the Americans began fighting one another in a violent war that lasted about four years. The population of America was much smaller in 1861, so if you look at tables of deaths and injuries from that war, take into account the smaller population. The violence of the Civil War was on a level similar to World War 2.

Many Americans try to minimize the violence of the Civil War by pointing out that most of the deaths were due to a lack of medical technology. It is true that the number of deaths would have been reduced tremendously with modern technology, but modern technology would also have provided modern weapons, and that would have compensated for the medical technology. There is no way to get around the fact that the Civil War was a very violent war, and that it was a sign that the Constitution was a failure at unifying the people and dealing with their problems.
 

Judge something by its results
Americans boast that the Constitution is the greatest document ever written, but it was just a variation of the primitive English government. It would be difficult to say that one government was better than the other. Both Britain and America have crummy governments that are being taken over by a small number of Zionists, and neither government has the ability to expose the Apollo moon landing hoax, the HoloHoax, or the 9/11 hoax. Both governments are like retarded girls who can easily be raped by anybody who pleases.

The men who created the Constitution were afraid that a powerful government would abuse the citizens and start ridiculous wars, so they went to the other extreme and designed a weak, submissive government. They assumed that a weak government would leave the people alone so that they could live in peace. Unfortunately, the government was so weak and submissive that it could not resolve any of the nation's problems. Rather than be free of violence, corruption, and war, the American people became victims of organized crime and corrupt government officials.

Americans like to boast that their 55 "founding fathers" were among the world's most intelligent, responsible, and educated people, but there's no evidence to support such a theory. Every group of people exaggerates their good qualities and criticizes other groups, but we cannot solve problems when we twist history to titillate ourselves. We must look at ourselves in the same serious manner that a scientist analyzes a tomato plant.
 

We need to design a better government
We're not going to fix America's problems by "going back" to or "restoring" the original Constitution. We need to make something better. A government system is like a computer program. We don't improve a computer program by returning to an early, primitive version. Instead, we must put a lot of time and effort into developing something better.

The Constitution and the Bill of Rights are crude documents that are difficult to understand. They were designed by people who didn't know anything about governments, language, or laws. Furthermore, the Constitution was designed in an era when most of the men were primitive farmers; slavery was an acceptable practice; and the primary form of communication was the human mouth. It is absurd to expect those primitive documents to be of value in our technically advanced era.

The people who wrote the Constitution had the attitude that government was a necessary evil, but that is a destructive attitude. A government is just a package of human software. We are certainly intelligent enough to design a better government, and after we create a better government, we can continually improve it as we learn more about the subject. All we have to do is change our attitudes towards "culture" and start treating it as "human software" or as "social technology".

The problem with social technology is that people have a tendency to resist it, whereas we enjoy physical technology. Understanding this concept is important, so let me explain it.
 

Physical technology is useful to individuals and groups
Imagine that we knew how to dehydrate people without killing them, just as yeast can be dehydrated. Imagine somebody volunteers to be dehydrated and sent to a planet in a nearby solar system. Upon his arrival - millions of years from now - a computer in his spacecraft would fill his spacesuit with water to bring him back to life.

If you were in charge of making sure that his spacecraft has all the necessary supplies for him to survive on that other planet, you would provide him with a lot of physical technology, such as radiation sensors, shovels, scissors, knives, nail clippers, solar panels, electric air compressors, and an electric jeep.

Would you also provide that astronaut with a school system, banking system, traffic system, legal system, patent system, or government system?
 

Social technology has no value to individuals

An astronaut alone on a planet millions of miles away from us wouldn't have any use for a monetary system, a holiday celebration, or clothing styles. He would have no reason to have a wedding or a birthday party. Social technology is only useful when there is a society of two or more people.

Physical knowledge allows us to manipulate the items in the universe, whereas social knowledge allows us how to manipulate people. Physical knowledge gives us control over the physical universe, whereas social knowledge gives us control over a group of people.

Therefore, physical knowledge would still be useful if you were alone on a planet because you would be able to use it to manipulate the world around you. However, social technology has no value unless there are at least two people.

When people contemplate social systems, they tend to selfishly ask themselves how the social systems benefit them as individuals. Unfortunately, social systems do not directly benefit individuals. Rather, social systems interfere with our lives and desires.
 

Social technology is tools; we are the workpiece
Physical technology gives each of us control over the universe. Since the universe never complains, each of us can do whatever we want with the universe. Each of us is free to shape pieces of wood into furniture, or manipulate silicon into electronic circuits. We can also bake rocks in furnaces to extract iron or copper. The universe never complains when we manipulate it.

Physical technology benefits each of us directly, and it does not control us or interfere with our lives. However, we don't directly benefit from social technology; rather, social technology controls our behavior. Social technology puts the individual citizen into the role of a piece of wood that is being cut by a knife. Since people don't like being controlled, we resist social technology. We complain that we should let the people be free to do as they please.

Social technology and "freedom" interfere with one another. It is idiotic for people to make vague demands for "freedom". It makes more sense to discuss:

"What sort of controls should put on ourselves, and in which areas should we be free to do as we please?"
 
Social technology is valuable
Because social technology has no value to an individual, many people believe that human life would be better if we eliminated government, corporations, legal systems, and all other social technology that influences our lives. These people advocate letting everybody be free to do as they please.

Unfortunately, social technology actually has much more importance to a society than does physical technology. Physical technology only gives a society the ability to control nature to produce material goods, but social technology determines everything about the people's lives and their future. If a society has crude social technology, or if the social technology is not applied properly, then the people's lives will be miserable regardless of what level of material wealth the people have.

Government systems, tax systems, and other social technology are like hammers, shovels, and bulldozers; they are tools that we use on ourselves in order to make us behave in certain ways. Whether a tool is useful to us or not depends on how it is made and how it is used. A poorly designed bulldozer, shovel, or hammer will not do a construction crew any good. In fact, it is possible to design a bulldozer that is so crummy that a construction crew would be better off without it.

The same concepts apply to social technology. It is possible to design a government, school, and other social technology that is so crummy that we are better off without it. Furthermore, it does not help us to use a tool in the wrong manner. For example, trying to slice tomatoes with a hammer is worse than not using the hammer at all. Likewise, we are causing trouble for ourselves when we use a social system in an appropriate manner, such as allowing our legal system to be used by businesses to remove competition, or allowing Zionists to arrest people who investigate the Holocaust.

The importance of social technology might become more apparent if you imagine yourself and thousands of other people today being sent back in time to 20,000 BC. If you were not allowed to take any physical technology with you, then you would have to live exactly like the primitive tribes around you. However, if you were capable of creating a useful government, school, and other social technology, you would be able to form a united society. This would allow you to live a more pleasant life than the tribes around you, and you would advance at a much more rapid pace. The people around you would appear to be intelligent monkeys by comparison to you.
 

Today's primitive tribes are examples of bad culture

Some human societies are still small and nomadic and living only slightly above the level of animals. Many people believe that today's primitive tribes are merely a few thousand years behind the rest of us in development. Supposedly, if we could go back in time a few thousand years, we would find our own ancestors living just like the primitive tribes of today. Supposedly the primitive tribes will advance to the level we are at if we leave them alone.

The most sensible explanation for why some tribes are still primitive is that they developed social technology that interfered with their development. For example, near the Sahara desert are a few scattered nomadic tribes known as the Wodaabe, all of whom are on the verge of extinction.

These people never developed a written language, and some of their social technology is almost the exact opposite of ours, such as the role of men and women. In our society men seek wives; unmarried girls spend their time preening and waiting for a man; and men compete with one another to be "successful". By comparison, the Wodaabe women take care for their families and do most of the work. The men do not seek wives, instead a man's wife is usually prearranged by his parents, but if he wants a different wife - or more of them - he must find one himself.

To help the men find wives the Wodaabe invented a social affair to bring people together from different tribes and give the men a chance to impress the women. It is an annual event that lasts seven days. The men prepare for the occasion by putting on makeup, shaving their foreheads, decorating themselves with jewelry, and dressing up in colorful costumes. Then the men get together in a circle and dance and make funny faces for the women.

National Geographic has an article about them, and here is one of the photos:
nationalgeographic.com/ngm/100best/wallpaper08.html

When a society encourages women to mate with men who make funny faces, they inadvertently breed themselves into clowns. When a society encourages women to mate with men who are wealthy regardless of whether they earned their money in a respectable manner or acquired it through crime or inheritances, they will inadvertently breed themselves into criminals and parasites.

The culture of a society determines what life is like to the people, and it determines what their future will be. Until recently, the competition for food continuously exterminated the tribes with the most detrimental culture. The primitive tribes that exist in the world today avoided extinction only because they moved into the areas that nobody else wanted to live in. If every area of the Earth was equally pleasant, then there would be no primitive tribes.

Today the primitive tribes provide entertainment for the more advanced nations, but the only way they will continue to survive is if we create wild game preserves for them to live in. We would have to treat them like animals. How would that help them or us? We have to face the fact that they are the losers in life, and they are going extinct, and there is nothing anybody can do to stop it.

The way a society select leaders; their attitude on what constitutes "success"; the role of women and men; their method of educating their children; their views on status symbols; their attitudes towards death; and all their other social technology determines what sort of life and future the people will have. It is very important that our culture be designed properly.
 

Laws and Customs
Our "culture" consists of instructions to control our behavior. We could divide these instructions into "laws" and "customs". A "law" is created by our government and enforced by our police. A "custom" develops inadvertently, and we feel pressured to follow customs in order to fit in with other people.

No citizen is allowed to misinterpret or ignore a law, and only a few government officials are allowed to create or alter them, but customs can be created, altered, misinterpreted, and ignored by each of us.

A custom is created when somebody behaves in a manner that other people decide to mimic. You can see this happening right now with children who watch MTV or Hollywood entertainers. The children often mimic the clothing, behavior, tattoos, and jewelry of the entertainers.

Some of the entertainers may behave in absurd manners simply in order to attract attention to themselves, but some of them may be crazy. In either case, the children who pick up the behavior are fools. They are giving society customs that don't make any sense and don't help any of us.

Many of the customs we practice today can make you wonder about the sanity of person who first did it. The man who first challenged another man to see who could drink the most alcohol may have been suffering from mental problems. The first woman to wear sexually stimulating clothing may have been a loser who could not attract a man in any other manner. The first person to poke a hole in his ear and dangle objects from it may have also been crazy.

Many of the customs we follow today may have started as the crazy behavior of a person who was suffering mental problems or who wanted to rebel against society. If a large number of children pick up the behavior, it becomes a custom, and other people feel pressured to mimic it.

Because many customs are absurd or dangerous, people get tired of following them, so after a few years they switch to something different. As a result, customs are always changing.

Laws, on the other hand, tend to be more sensible than customs because they are deliberately created by our government. Even though our government is incompetent and dishonest, they would never create laws that are as ridiculous as some of the customs people are following.
 

Culture connoisseurs
People often complain about laws, but they rarely complain about customs. However, aside from the laws that were created to eliminate competition or help organized crime gangs, laws are much more rational than customs. It would make more sense for people to complain about customs.

When the government creates a law, we want the law be sensible and useful. Some people will examine new laws and try to find flaws so that they can justify removing it. We behave like connoisseurs of fine culture who refuse to follow anything but the very best.

However, when we are free to decide for ourselves how to behave, we often choose a practice that we would consider insane if it were a law.
 

We can have progress in social science
We can make improvements to our government, legal system, economy, schools, and cities as soon as we change our primitive attitude about "culture". For example, a "corporation" is not an entity, as movies such as The Corporation expect us to believe. That particular movie may be Zionist propaganda, but there are many people who truly believe that corporations are evil entities with the ability to take control of the human mind.

A corporation is just a package of human software. As with other software, we can design corporations to be whatever we please. We control corporations; they do not control us. We can also design an economy that doesn't use corporations, if we figure out how to develop something better than a corporation.

Social technology is a tool that we can use to manipulate societies, so we can make our lives better as soon as we start understanding human behavior and how these tools can shape us into a society.