blog

//GERABLOG: Introduction, Philosophy of Computing, Home Alone 2

Earth, 19 December 2017

Hi

My name is Emily Gera. I am a writer and a video games journalist, and a consultant for game studios. I was on TV for a bit on a show about video games, and did some radio stuff. I’m currently studying for a degree in cognitive science at Simon Fraser University, focusing on artificial intelligence, computational linguistics and other fun stuff.

Welcome to my blog! Within which I will write about the sort of stuff I’m studying or working on, or if I see a bird outside with a particularly sad face and it makes me think deep thoughts about the plight of earth’s creatures, or if I am eating Bolognese. Sometimes I might write a post even if I’m not eating Bolognese.

I will be conducting this like a weekly correspondence, dating it and addressing you in this way, so that when I stop wanting to do this I will feel a sharp pang of guilt like when my mom calls me and I don’t pick up the phone and then I mentally envision the scene in The Exorcist where Dimi’s ancient mother is all sick and sad and alone and screaming. This way I will probably continue writing after this initial post.

Anyway, a new book came in the mail today. Here it is:

The Blackwell Guide to the Philosophy of Computing and Information. It was published in 2004 which makes it over a decade out of date but the paper smells great, and so far it offers an interesting overview of the history of computing — including Turing and Church’s theoretical work on the limits of machines to the Hilbert Program, which aimed to express mathematics as a complete system, and Godel who showed this to all be impossible. It’s all very interesting but the details of the source material are pretty baffling so far, even in spite of how broad an overview this is. So I’ve given up and started watching Home Alone 2 instead.


A couple things about it so far:

The book has a really intriguing albeit weirdly abstract ways of looking at the world as information. “Every year, the world produces between 1 and 2 exabytes of data, that is, roughly 250 megabytes for every human on earth.”

Does this mean by the time I die I will have produced, say if I live to be 85, around 21GB of data? Because I’m pretty sure over the last decade I’ve spent as an Internet news drone I’ve surpassed my quota a couple of gig in shitty headline puns alone, and another hundred gig in pictures of dogs. I guess in 2004 they hadn’t imagined yet content would be the capital of the future.

Until next time,

Gera

Oh by the way, my new work email has been decided upon through mass vote.

It started like this:

One Canadian morning I thought to myself, “I need a professional work email address so that finally I am taken seriously in the demanding world of video games.” But what should my handle be, I wondered chin-in-handedly? This was truly a question for the ages And one that could only be solved by harnessing the help of the kind folkpeople of Twitter, who through years of quiet thought and introspection might finally help me come up with the one perfect email handle. And so after a beautiful montage in which I slowly age, it came to be that the people willed it gera@cyber-wizard.com.

Shoot me some games-related questions and I’ll do my best to answer them. I’m looking for questions for my AMA section (which will be posted anonymously.) If you have any games industry related questions I’ll do my best to answer them. I’ll continue to add more to the page over time.