"But here’s the thing: this 'like the brain' label usually isn’t a lie — it’s just not very informative. There are many ways a system can be like the brain, but only a fraction of these will prove important. We know so much that is true about the brain, but the defining issue in theoretical neuroscience today is, simply put, we don’t know what matters when it comes to understanding how the brain computes. The debate is wide open, with plausible guesses about the fundamental unit, ranging from quantum phenomena all the way to regions spanning millimeters of brain tissue."
+ The beginning of a series from Beau Cronin, computational neuroscientist and friend of the newsletter.
"My legal saga started last summer with a knock at the door, behind which stood two federal agents ready to to serve me with a court order requiring the installation of surveillance equipment on my company's network."
"SigFox’s network, which is waiting on final approval of the company’s hardware from regulators, will cover the San Francisco peninsula from its urban tip to the sprawling Silicon Valley region 40 miles to the south. It will be the company’s first U.S. deployment of a network technology that already covers the whole of France, most of the Netherlands, and parts of Russia and Spain. SigFox built those by adding its own equipment to existing cell towers and radio antennas... The Silicon Valley network will use the unlicensed 915-megahertz spectrum band commonly used by cordless phones. Objects connected to SigFox’s network can operate at very low power but will be able to transmit at only 100 bits per second—slower by a factor of 1,000 than the networks that serve smartphones. But that could be enough for many applications."