I am a child of the digital era. As an awkward, wayward preteen, I understood math better than I understood people. Kids are cruel but math follows predictable logic. I didn’t know it then but this was to be important training for the future.


Human knowledge is the practical codification of human experience into logical, repeatable sections that may, one day, be described with math. This is the event horizon for Artificial Intelligence, where it becomes entirely self-sufficient. It is the collected patterns in which all data-points have a proper place. …

A mesh network is a local, non-hierarchical network in which all nodes on it have the capacity to reorganize to maintain optimal network efficiency. It is a self-organizing system. They are decentralized, preferring mechanisms of self-healing over top-level controller routing. A mesh network is a type of specific, physical network though no specific standards exist yet to define implementation. As such, individual networks operate independently.

It is intended to be a highly efficient and redundant network.

A neural network is a series of machine-learning algorithms implemented to solve incredibly complex problems. They are so named as they attempt to mimic…

Lingchi was an actual method of torture, resulting in execution, whereby a person was slowly killed by being administered thousands of small incisions across their body over several hours. Metaphorically, the phrase, “death by a thousand cuts” represents how a large number of small problems can accumulate to cause a significant impact. Owing one person fifty bucks is not too dangerous, owing thousands of people fifty bucks, who all come to collect at once can be catastrophic. In Psychology, a series of minor negative changes occurring over time may dramatically change a person for the worse in the end.


My first serious girlfriend, Katrina, was the bee’s knees. We were both born on the same day, thirty minutes apart. She came from Salina, Kansas. On our shared eighteenth birthday, in 1988, we bought our first lottery tickets. Neither were winners. She used to get worked up about small choices, believing they could cause everything to change from some predetermined fate. If you eat a ham sandwich instead of turkey, maybe you’ll get in a car wreck later that day.

Bush, Reagan and Gorbachev with the World Trade Center in the background

I’d temporarily set aside my digital life in 1988, focused on debate and performance. That year I’d win the State-level…

Matthew Barton

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