The Aleph, the Vision Pro and Uncertainty

Image: Bryan Geraldo
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By FERNANDO NOGUEIRA DA COSTA*

As in the story by Jorge Luís Borges, the new technology cannot overcome uncertainty nor bring the future

“O Aleph”, published in 1949, is a famous short story by Argentine writer Jorge Luís Borges. Guided by a narcissistic madman, in the basement of his house, the protagonist discovers a mystical object called the Aleph. It contains every point in the universe in one place. Uncertainty arises when the protagonist tries to understand the vastness and complexity of this discovery.

He already knew from the death of his beloved: when the incessant and vast universe moves away from a person, this change will only be the first in an endless series. During life, many seek to invent reasons to become admirable. This fruitless work enlarges his work only for himself, but not for others who are indifferent.

Finding personal wisdom to be able to encompass everything, they undertake, for example, a topographical epic where they record the fauna, flora, hydrography, orography (description of the mountains), the military and monastic history of all nations! They deal with heaven and earth, considering the lower world as the mirror and map of the higher. This sizable product is still limited. However, it is less tedious compared to the proposal to versify the entire surroundings of the planet.

He also knew that after reaching the age of forty, any change becomes a hateful symbol of being passengers of time. To complete the vast personal work, the Aleph is indispensable. “It is one of the points of space capable of containing all points”.

The Aleph is the place where all the places of the orb – the spherical body of the globe in all its extension – seen from all angles. If all the places on earth were found in the Aleph, the cellar where he was was not dark, as it contained all the luminaries, all the lamps, all the sources of light...

When the protagonist sees the Aleph, his writer's despair begins. “All language is an alphabet of symbols whose exercise presupposes a past shared by the interlocutors. But how to convey to others the infinite Aleph, when your memory barely embraces it?”

If the gods denied him the discovery of an image capable of, at the same time, addressing East and West, North and South, his story would be tainted with literature. Would it be fiction or falsehood...

Even because the central problem was insoluble: the enumeration of an infinite set, after all, would be partial. He saw through the Aleph millions of deeds, both pleasurable and atrocious. In that gigantic instant, none astonished him as the fact that they all occupied the same spot, without superimposition or transparency.

What their eyes saw was simultaneous. What it would transcribe would be successive, as language is like that. How would you register the inconceivable universe?

Fortunately, after a few sleepless nights, forgetfulness took hold of the potential writer again… “When I saw everything, did I immediately forget them?! Our mind is porous to oblivion. I myself am distorting and losing, under the tragic erosion of the years, the traits of my beloved woman”.

The Aleph is a complex and multifaceted symbol with different interpretations. It would represent divine unity and the connection between God and the universe by containing all points of the universe in a single point, allowing those who contemplate it to obtain a complete view of everything. In this story, the Aleph symbolizes the search for the totality of knowledge and the (im)possibility of understanding the infinity of the universe.

Furthermore, the Aleph can also be interpreted as a symbol of transcendence or enlightenment. It refers to the (in)capacity to perceive reality in its fullness and transcend the limitations of human existence.

Jorge Luís Borges explored the theme of ambiguity and the multiplicity of meanings in his work. He left to the reader the different interpretations of the Aleph and its symbolic representations.

O visionpro, recently released, in turn, is just the beginning of the new Space Computing Era. Combine digital content with your physical space. With virtual glasses, the human navigates simply using his eyes, hands and voice. So you'll be able to do things in ways that were previously impossible. No one has ever seen it like this. It's The Aleph!

It will release you from your desktop. Your apps will follow you everywhere. Unfortunately, you will never disconnect from your work concerns...

With VisionPro you will have an infinite screen. It will transform the way you use your favorite apps. It will organize apps anywhere, scale them to the perfect size, making your dream workspace a reality.

Will you be alienated from reality? No, all of this will happen while you remain present in the world around you. Wherever you are, you have an immersive way to experience the entertainment you want. O VisionPro will allow you to turn any room into your own personal canvas.

It will expand your movies, shows and games to the perfect size until you feel part of the action with spatial audio. It will have more pixels, compared to a 4K TV, for each eye. You will be able to enjoy any content anywhere, even in flight.

you, so online, you can capture “magic” spatial photos and spatial videos in a 3D camera, including immersive spatial audio. You will relive every moment. Your memories will instantly come to life, prove and never forget!

Your photo and video library will be seen in remarkable scale. The panoramas will envelop you, making you feel like you are back where you took them. The connection will be like everyone is in the same space, making meetings more meaningful. Vision Pro will make it easy to collaborate and connect wherever you are.

You'll control Vision Pro with your eyes, hands and voice. Interactions feel intuitive and magical. Just look at an element, tap with your fingers to select, and use the virtual keyboard or dictation to type.

In this way, applications will come to life and fill the space around them, beyond the confines of a screen. They can be moved anywhere, scaled to the perfect size, react to your ambient lighting, and even cast shadows. You will transform the space around you. Applications will extend beyond the dimensions of your environment.

O Aleph or VisionPro make, whether for bad or for good, your experiences unforgettable. Whoa! In space you can come and go, but in time you will only go to the past and return to the present, you will not cross the barrier in front of future time.

They still haven't built "the time machine" capable of bringing you back from the future. Uncertainty will remain due to the lack of data on the open future. Unfortunately, by definition, all data is from the past…

Given the uncertainty of the future, resulting from multiple decentralized decisions, uncoordinated and uninformed of each other, economists try to assess the risks of it based on historical data, statistics and forecasting models. When the present is below balance (based on a historical average), they point to growth; above balance, they signal a fall; in the gravitational center, “without a doubt” (sic), it will “walk sideways”. It's not economic science, it's a “chutometer”.

In reality, it is impossible to accurately predict systemic outcomes or assign probabilities to a given dynamic configuration. The future is open.

A complex system like “the whole” emerges from interactions over time between its various components with unequal weights of influence. The crucial decisions of a key agent, such as the State, are capable of irreversibly altering the context because they are taken by a component with greater weight or influence.

Faced with the infinite immensity of the future universe, we humans must be humble. The formulation of a logical argument, even from simple and schematic premises, conveys more real knowledge rather than a superficial discussion about "everything under the sun".

Economics, updated as a science of complexity, if it wants to present itself as a realistic science and a guide to practical decisions, it must simply progress towards the adoption of certain principles of universal application. It will thus provide positive results regarding the small dimension of the unknowable universe.

*Fernando Nogueira da Costa He is a full professor at the Institute of Economics at Unicamp. Author, among other books, of Brazil of banks (EDUSP).


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