Category Archives: Artificial Intelligence

A twisted Business: The Absurdity of Love



One of the recurring themes of the novel The Brothers Karamazov  is the absurdity of love. Katerina loves Dmitri, and maybe Ivan, his brother,  who also loves her. Mrs. Khokhlakovs, not the most reliable of guides since she seems to lack all sense, even though she is rich, says “they’re both throwing away their lives for no good reason; they are perfectly aware of it and actually enjoying it.” Sometimes in the novel it is very difficult to discern who loves whom. Or whether the emotion is love or hate.

But immediately Dmitri abandons Katerina for Grushenka instead. Even though he still loves Katerina. Both Dmitri and his father love the same woman—Grushenka. And perhaps Dmitri and his brother Ivan also love the same woman—Katerina. It is confusing to say the least.  That causes problems and sets the novel in motion.

Grushenka said she would be “the god to whom Dmitri will pray.” That brings the religious quest to an entirely new level. And Ivan, the man of reason, even tells Katerina that he approves of this twisted business, even though it seems so absurd.

Lise loves Alyosha and Alyosha loves her. But she can’t believe this is possible. And nothing seems to happen as a result of this professed love. It is still-born.

The loves in the novel are as crazy as religions. It was all a “twisted business” and “a twisted ecstasy.” Just like religion.

On it surface  the novel is an absurd  love farce and a murder mystery. And. yet it is a great novel. One of the greatest involving a profound religious quest.

Katerina loves (and hates) Grushenka and yet tries to keep her away from Dmitri. Dmitri and Ivan at one point nearly fight over Katerina. For a while Grushenka and Katerina love each other, even though they were competing for the same man,  but quickly those loves break into a thousand tiny shards. In all of this heartbreak where does the truth lie? Obviously, in this twisted business it is impossible to find the truth. It is the result of the “violent and conflicting passions of the Karamazovs.” Particularly “when it is possible to fall in love and to hate at the same time.”A twisted Business  And particularly when those passions involve God. Another twisted business.


The Triumph of Artificial Intelligence


I have not blogged about artificial intelligence yet. Many of us are worried about it. That includes me. I am terrified of it. Yet, I know it can be used for good as well as ill. That has now been proven! Recently there has been an example of the awesome good it can bring. And that is it can bring wisdom to a very important problem. Beer!


Researchers at KU Leuven university in Europe have analyzed the chemical makeup of 250 different beers in the Kingdom of Beer—Belgium. And they used that data with artificial intelligence to establish that there is a way to make beer better! They created a tasting panel that looked carefully at 180,000 online beer reviews and found that they could improve the beers with AI and how people would appreciate the new beers based on its composition.

In other words, AI have provided an immense service to humanity! We should all be grateful.

Using Artificial Intelligence to Amplify the worst of religion


Somewhere on this trip to the southern USA I also learned  that in India spiritual guides are giving advice to truth seekers.  Nothing really unusual about that, in the most religious country in the world. India, not the United States has earned that designation. But this time there is a difference. The spiritual guides are AI Chatbots! Spiritual advice is being given online by machines without human intervention. Apparently, thousands of people have signed up for the spiritual advice from the Bhagavad Gita an epic scripture that has the answers to all our problems.  Many Indians in the past have got spiritual advice from that source but not with the twist of AI to tailor the advice to you!


According to Salimah Shivji of the CBC, people are now fearful that some will use religion online to spike up political violence?  This is not impossible. We have all seen what happened in the US in earlier elections. As well, look at some of the things American televangelists have done. Much of it does not inspire confidence. After all, the internet is quite capable of amplifying the worst of religion, just as it currently does with politics!