Author: Satyen K Bordoloi

Satyen is an award-winning scriptwriter, journalist based in Mumbai. He loves to let his pen roam the intersection of artificial intelligence, consciousness, and quantum mechanics. His written words have appeared in many Indian and foreign publications.

A female PhD scholar is battered with patriarchy, insensitivity, juvenile dress codes and what can only be described as a form of slavery, all of which hampers India’s rise as a scientific superpower, writes Satyen K. Bordoloi. By every account, Kamala Bhagvat (Sohonie after marriage) was a brilliant woman. She had a BSc degree in chemistry, which in 1933 was a huge deal. She applied to the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, for a research fellowship but was turned down by the then-director and Nobel Laureate Prof. C V Raman on the ground that women were not competent to pursue…

Read More

The discovery of a microorganism that edits genes in a university pool not only changes our understanding of how DNA works but also throws into spotlight the importance of saving genetic diversity on the planet, writes Satyen K. Bordoloi. In many university campuses worldwide, the local pool has been the source of fun. Useful for late-night skinny dips, it also brings the occasional drunks to their senses after being dunked by fellow drunks. That one of these university pools could alter our very understanding of genes, is something no one fathomed. If the random scooping up of water from a…

Read More

A recent demonstration from scientists in China that DNA-based computing could program a single array to implement more than 100 billion distinct circuits puts the spotlight on the exciting field of DNA-based computing writes Satyen K. Bordoloi. Liu Cixin’s seminal novel ‘The Three Body Problem’ shows a way to turn humans into a computer. Three persons are labelled ‘Input 1’, ‘Input 2’, and ‘Output’. Each has a white flag and a black flag corresponding to ‘1’ and ‘0’. Based on the colour of the flag each of the Input person holds up, the Output will hold a different flag. With…

Read More

Technology – supposed to be Israel’s saviour – proved to be its Achilles heel writes Satyen K. Bordoloi as he argues that tech should never be a proxy for a political solution. The border with Gaza is supposed to be the most secure on the planet. It is guarded by an army of sensors, cameras, drones, humans, automatic weapons etc., all so advanced a bird couldn’t cross without being noticed. Then there was electronic intelligence with many believing it’s hard to find a phone in Gaza – despite just 2G network – that wasn’t under surveillance. Indeed, Israel’s surveillance technology…

Read More

One of the biggest doomsday scenarios peddled by AI scaremongers is massive layoffs writes Satyen K. Bordoloi calling it a one-sided, flawed argument outweighed by opportunities to redefine the entire jobs market. This Bollywood producer with a small office in Indian cinemas ‘khau-galli’ – New Link Road in Andheri West where most big producers have their offices, had just discovered ChatGPT. I had been writing for him for a few months but he was not happy. He showed me a few pages of a story we were working on, proclaimed it masterly and informed me it was generated on ChatGPT.…

Read More

Don’t pick unknown calls from these hotspots as you could be bait for cybercriminals says Satyen K. Bordoloi as he uses a new report to survey the lay of India’s cybercrime landscape and divine reasons for the same. The day was boringly usual for Mr Radhakrishnan of Kozhikode till he received a video call from an unknown number. It turned out to be a friend, in trouble now, who requested ₹40,000. He transferred it. Only when he got another call asking for more that he squirmed. He dialled the actual number of the same friend and he seemed well. He…

Read More

While debunking alien sightings on Earth in Part 1 of this article, Satyen K. Bordoloi contends that we might have conclusive proof of life on other planets within a decade while outlining the philosophical and cultural underpinning that make us believe in E.T. The hilarious 2011 comedy Paul is a parody of alien films, especially Steven Spielbergs. In one of its funniest scenes a woman who believes in god and hence disbelieves evolution says, “Nothing that you can say or do can shake my belief or faith in the sure and certain knowledge that God made heaven and earth and…

Read More

While debunking the alleged alien body displayed in Mexico a few days ago, Satyen K. Bordoloi – in this two-part series – still claims that the existence of aliens is both a scientific inevitability and a social, cultural and psychological necessity for humans. In the 2011 comedy Paul, two British nerds visiting Area 51 – long believed to be the site of a secret government alien research facility – encounter an actual alien. This foul-mouthed, cigarette-smoking, bus-driving alien had been living on Earth for decades (even consulted Spielberg for his films in the 70s). As the three make a run…

Read More

Even as the war cry against AI gathers a hurricane, Satyen K. Bordoloi questions the very foundation on which this fearmongering rests – AI’s purported intelligence. Robots, back when there were none in the world, were called automatons. The idea of what a robot would be was simple. It would be an automation machine. That is the foundation upon which almost all of modern technological innovation rests: create systems and machines that automate our work. Artificial Intelligence – so far – is the pinnacle of that idea. However, it seems to have been forgotten by both sides using AI: the…

Read More

Despite being romanticised as futuristic; robots are already an indispensable part of our lives not only making it better but also exploring outer worlds like the Moon and Mars writes Satyen K. Bordoloi highlighting how AI is turbocharging the industry. In the film, The Bicentennial Man, a house robot with an AI brain is bought by a family. It is gauche and unable to hold even a small glass horse model, breaks it. With time though, the robot learns to fit in, managing not just fragile things, but householders’ delicate egos. Roombas will go down in history as the first…

Read More