Posts Tagged ‘creativity

01
Jun
15

The Mind Is a Terrible Thing to Replace

blogrobotsWhat’s telling is that the fears expressed in these films are not of how our technology will deviate from our basic human nature. The fear is of what happens if it doesn’t.—Arthur Chu

Steve Wozniak, Stephen Hawking, and Elon Musk all predict a future in which human beings will be replaced by computers. It’s happening now and many of us have already witnessed parts of it in varying degrees. For example, I haven’t set foot in a financial institution in 25 years. All of my banking is automated. Is the computer takeover really such bad news and will it really ever become a reality?

I’ve been a science fiction nerd from birth, raised on movies like The Stepford Wives, Tron, Westworld, and 2001: A Space Odyssey. In these films, computers could and would take over our lives the minute we turned our backs on them. Gee, that sounds like some people I’ve known. But as I grew up I looked at this in a different light. For example, in A.I. Artificial Intelligence, Jude Law’s character is an artificial Romeo named Gigolo Joe. As a single woman burned out on dating I remember thinking, “You mean I could have the computerized man of my dreams with none of the relationship hassles? Where do I get me one of them??”

Now fast forward to me as a professional working woman. Anyone who’s been in any kind of management or leadership position for more than one nanosecond knows that much of what’s done at the intermediary level can best be described as adult babysitting. If someone asked me if I had any kids I’d say, “You betcha! I’ve got hundreds of them!” And I meant it.

Humans are flawed, emotional, lazy, jealous, and often incapable of exhibiting higher-order thinking. Each of the Seven Deadly Sins reflects a distinctly human trait. With A.I. I won’t have to shell out big bucks for frivolous lawsuits, worry about infighting, hurt feelings, sick days, or burgeoning health-care costs. I know what I’d get each and every day and could just focus on getting the job done. Hallelujah!

But is that how life is to be lived? Isn’t the very definition of evolution the constant adaptation to future scenarios? Creation, epiphany, and initiative are the catalysts for all change. And if you believe we evolved from space dust, which came from who knows where, you better believe that humans are a requirement for any type of future.

Even a movie like Prometheus, which utilizes the “alien gospel doctrine,” presents a dialogue between David, an A.I. being, and Elizabeth Shaw, a human scientist. When they finally discover who created mankind, David is satisfied, Shaw is not. At the end of the film the question still remains: who created the alien race that created man? Shaw must now find who created the aliens who created us and so on, and so on, and so on. The Law of Conservation of Mass says that matter remains constant in a closed system. Although some would argue that our universe is not closed, everything still has a beginning. There has to be a creative force at the beginning of anything.

Life is all about the search for truth, at least from the human perspective. And as long as humans are creating what replaces them, our genetic coding will end up in a new binary form. How can the creator not leave an imprint of himself on his creation? I just saw Ex Machina in which a brilliant but sadistic computer genius, Nathan, creates a brilliant but sadistic A.I., Ava. Thus proveth my point. Just as in Blade Runner, (spoiler alert) the creation kills its creator. Glad to see karma extends to A.I.

In today’s world, more than at any other time in the history of mankind, we erroneously focus our future purely on science. We act as if science trumps all and exist in intellectual solitude. Anyone who injects anything else is a denier or a nut-job, despite the fact that throughout all of mankind’s history, faith and science have walked hand in hand. As Michael Crichton so brilliantly said, “Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming the matter is already settled.” In his book All Truth Is God’s Truth, Arthur F. Holmes explains that at least three major perspectives run through the history of thought: naturalistic, idealistic, and theistic. Science and faith are all wrapped up in each other. Neither can exist in isolation.

Life’s ultimate mystery is bound up in carbon-based units and that, my friends, is why we’ll never ever be replaced. The human condition is one of errors which in turn offers the capacity for growth. We sharpen our tools, go back to the drawing board, and try again. We evolve. We show initiative and insights. We do things that are illogical because we see because we have conviction.Our minds lead us to see things that science cannot see, our souls lead us to do things before the evidence demands action, and our hearts drive us to fulfill our greatest purpose.

a-collection-of-quotes-in-operational-excellence-quality-and-change-35-638I agree that robots should replace the majority of people consuming resources on this planet. After all, if you’re not helping, you’re hurting, and you should be replaced immediately. Robots are far better at “doing” human, but life is all about “being” human. So for those of us who strive to make the world a better place through our manmade talents, our God-given gifts, and the wholeness of our humanity: Relax and embrace the future, because it’s going to be a glorious one!

07
Jun
13

complaining won’t fill your till

Dr-EvilAs a writer, publisher, and book purveyor, I always read literary news with great interest. I’ve been in the military, high tech, and government contracting, and the world of publishing is just as volatile and crazy as any of them. Yesterday, an article on the web complained that Amazon was destroying Britain’s book industry through its rock-bottom pricing, ruthless corporate behavior, and grotesquely unfair tax arrangements.

So what’s your point? Welcome to life on Earth. Corporations are ruthless, life isn’t fair, and if you aren’t pricing everything as competitively as possible you won’t be running your business for long. When I worked in semiconductor manufacturing, it was obvious that factories outsourced to lower-cost regions to get that rock-bottom pricing; and when I was in government contracting I saw some pretty ruthless corporate behavior.

You must react to changes in your industry sooner rather than later. Pretending it’s not going to happen is not an option, yet we do this all the time. For all our claims that flexibility is the key to airpower, human beings will always loathe change. If something is radically changing in your industry (and it always is) do something differently than you’ve done it before. Repeat this cycle every day of every month of every year as long as you are breathing. And ruthless behavior, not just in corporations, is a fact of life. Only you have the power to decide how much ruthlessness you are going to expose yourself to.

How can I attract more business aside from calling my competitors jackasses? We’ve all heard of the ‘Law of Attraction’, yet you’d think everyone had a Ph.D. in the ‘Law of Repulsion’! Stop telling me how horrible your adversary is. All’s fair in love and war and ESPECIALLY in business. Don’t tell me what the other person is doing wrong, fill my head with all the things you are doing right and what that means to me! Just because you say a competitor sucks, that doesn’t make me feel drawn to you any more than insisting that my political party is corrupt makes me want to switch sides. I’m too busy being creative to worry about how to ‘dis’ my opponent. Imagine if we all engaged in conversations where we were actually passionate about what we believed in instead of spewing out hate about the opposition.

Books are sacred. They aren’t ordinary objects like TVs or even fighter jets. If you can hold it in your hand, you can keep it in your heart. And yes, you can buy our books on Amazon. But if I haven’t convinced you why you should stop by our website or call and order directly from us, than I’ve got no one to blame but myself. So stop competing and start achieving! Stop complaining and start promoting! And for God’s sake, stop pointing at the problem and start being a part of the solution!

28
May
13

hello mountain, it’s me muhammad

The Charlie "T" Jones Conference Center

The Charlie “T” Jones Conference Center

If the mountain will not come to Muhammad, Muhammad will come to the mountain. Life is all about making a series of decisions designed to move you closer to your goals; decisions that often involve seeking out alternative routes to get you to your final destination. My father, Charlie “Tremendous” Jones, joked, “Plan on everything going wrong. If something does go right, we’ll just have to work that in!”

Like every other living, thinking person on this planet, I get up every day looking for ways to further my professional mission. I try lots of different things, plan on them all going wrong, change it up a bit, and pray a lot. This strategy kept our business steady and even on a sustained growth pattern for the last four years. Life is good, but good just isn’t good enough anymore. There’s got to be a better, more concentrated strategy out there that we just haven’t discovered.

For several years, I’ve mulled over various usage options for our vacant warehouse space. My inner child had dreams of an indoor putt-putt facility, go-carts, and bumper cars; even a year-round haunted house spooktacular. But alas, I just couldn’t link that directly to our core mission. I had even considered a flea market since our founder was such a lover of collecting antiquities and books of all types. However, nothing led this opportunity to fruition materialize either.

3d_layout_prelim1All this was going through my mind as I was still working at building our clientele base, going out and speaking, giving away books, and hosting various events at our current facility. That’s when the idea of a state-of-the-art conference center was born. Rather than go out and sing the praises of how books can transform the life of an organization, why not build a leadership annex where I could bring the entrepreneurs, chambers of commerce, and business people in so I could actually show them!

Rather than put a link on our site about how we funnel our profits to ten tremendous organizations via the Books for Tremendous Living Foundation,  why not open up a gorgeous area where these groups could come and conduct events educating people in our area about ways they can get involved and help their neighbors!

Rather than trying to get booked into high-dollar venues, why not have intimate settings where attendees can learn sales techniques from Jeffrey Gitomer; how to write books from Mark Sanborn; how to become a speaker from Don Hutson; and how to combine your faith with your profession from Naomi Rhode?

So the planning process began, and we started setting aside the money and reviewing architectural drawings. After years of trial and error and due diligence, the groundbreaking will commence on June 3rd, 2013. All systems are finally go! And while I’m still assuming everything will go wrong, I do know I’m moving that mountain one step closer. And in life, that’s all that matters. Check out our tremendous progress on our website and watch it all come together!




Tremendous Tracey


CEO Tremendous Life Books. Book Evangelist

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