Prisoners Dilemma Tournaments

The next meeting will take place on the 15.11. at 20:00 at the Tunnel Vienna.
The topic this time is going to be: Prisoners Dilemma Tournaments

Please have a look at the literature provided:

1)  Definition and Basic Game Theory of the Prisoners Dilemma

This website contains a lot of information on game theory in general and gives an introduction. You can read the linked page but also proceed to further topics or clarify certain terms in previous basic chapters. In the NWC however we will focus on the concept of the Prisoners Dilemma.

2) Expand the concept: Iterated Prisoners Dilemma

The case becomes interesting once the Dilemma is iterated several times and/or played among different people using their own strategy. The optimal strategies in such tournaments lead to different interpretation and have significance in many fields. Here are 3 articles presenting different successful strategies. All shortly review what the Prisoners Dilemma is ( you might want to skip these parts )

Tit for Tat and altruism:
Zero Determinant Games and the evolution of cooperation:
Tribalism and the importance of communication:

Additionally: These are some online Simulators to check the payoff of your own strategies.  Hope you manage to navigate through the Interface.

3) Sourcecodes

Stanfords Plato:

A generalization of the IPD is allowing strategies chosen due to probabilities. The so called Stochastic Iterated Prisoner Dilemma has quite a mathematical body (see also zero determinant games). Take a dip with google!

Additional historic information on IPD Tournaments:

If you proceed on this page with NEXT you will find all the different strategies together with their code which took stage during Axelrods first IPD Contest.


Editing genomes with CRISPR

The next meeting will take place on the 18.10. at 19:30 at the Tunnel Vienna.
The topic this time is going to be: Editing genomes with CRISPR, between scientific breakthroughs and societal challenges

Please have a look at the literature provided:

Watch this video to have a basic understanding what CRISPR is and why it is so revolutionary for genome editing:

CRISPR “history”:

Should you edit your children’s genes?

Welcome to the CRISPR Zoo:

How CRISPR works on a molecular Level:

Attend after our discussion the “editing genomes with CRISPR, between scientific breakthroughs and societal challenges” symposium! The symposium is for free and it will take place on the 19 + 20.10.17. If you want to go there you have to register until the 13.10.17 here:

what can you experience at the symposium:
  • An open dialogue between the scientific community (ranging from life scientists, to social scientists, and beyond) and civil society, discussing ongoing applications of the CRISPR technology, expected and envisioned developments, and the benefits, caveats and consequences of this technology’s applications;
  • provide a platform for public engagement on this topic, enabling researchers involved in the CRISPR field to interact with citizens, regulators, and stakeholders;
  • raise these issues in a European context, in order to facilitate the development of a European engagement with this revolution.

Social implications of AI

The next and last meeting for this semester will take place on the 30.6. at 18:00 at the Tunnel Vienna.
Since we probably don’t see each other till October, we figured it would be nice to have a “home exercise” for the summer (like last year). Therefore I’d like to ask you for suggestions. If there is any literature you think is interesting, let us know. On the next meeting we will then choose together which one we want to read over the summer. Besides that we also will send out a collection of all suggestions.

For our this times meeting Nino prepared the topic Social implications of AI. Please have a look at the literature provided:

Kurzgesagt Video:
CGP-Grey Video:
Wait-But-Why Blog Part 1&2:
Paper on AI-Safety:
“The focus of the discussion should not be if and how a general AI is technological feasible but on the social implications of automation and the rapid improvement of AI’s”

What is life? Are viruses alive?

The next meeting will take place on Fr 16.6. 18:00 again in Tunnel Vienna. This times topic will be: What is life? Are viruses alive? presented by Geli and Patrick.
Please read into and watch the materials provided in order for us to have a common basis of knowledge for the discussion:

Level 1:

Watch this video explaining in brief what Viruses are and discussing differences in organization compared to things perceived as alive.

Level 2:

Read these articles discussing how newly found giant viruses might alter our previous understanding of aliveness/alivehood/alivebeing?
level 3:
Read a physicists perspective on the subject in Erwin Schroedingers book: What is life? A book that is based on a course of lectures held in 1943.

Should we colonize Mars?

The next meeting will take place on Fr 2.6. at 18:00 again in Tunnel Vienna.
This times Topic will be: Should we colonize Mars?, prepared by Thomas.Please make use of the great amount of Literature Thomas provided and read into the topic so we can have a nice discussion:

Level 1 Fundaments
As basis for our discussion I take this article in the Jacobin Magazine on the difficulties of governing a future Mars colony:
A critical view on Space X’s endeavours of colonizing the red planet and their moral context:
Level 2 Background
A response on the Aeon article on Space X’s efforts and how space exploration can aid humankind:
More on the Jacobin Magazine article in an interview with the author:
For more on space fairing context, a somewhat blue-eyed but fun to read article on how we would colonize Mars as part three of a series of posts on space colonization by waitbutwhy:
Level 3 Moar, moar, moar!
Videos and articles on the context of space travel:

Decoherence, the quantum-to -classical transition

The next meeting will take place on Fr. 19.5. at 18:00 in Tunnel Vienna
Lana is going to present the topic:
Decoherence, the quantum-to -classical transition
To be able to participate in the discussion pleas read the literature provided :

level 1: 

Level 2: 

W. Zurek 2003: decoherence and the transition from quantum to classical – revisited 3: book 

M. Schlosshauer: Decoherence and the quantum to classical transition

Paul Feyerabend’s “against method”

The next meeting will take place on Fr 5.5. at 18:00 at the Tunnel Vienna Live and will be hosted by Moritz:

First, the plan was to cover current views in philosophy of science, because of the last discussion about the wiener Kreis and logical positivism. So I will try to be as recent as my knowledge permits and talk about Paul Feyerabend and his famous book “against method” (well, it was 1975 but I guess that’s recent in philosophy).

To discuss what came after logical positivism, please read a basic overview about Poppers Critical_rationalism (for those of you, who speak german please read the german one because it is much better).

This is necessary to understand Feyerabends criticism of science as ideology:

And about his interesting life between physics and philosophy i recommend the 5. Chapter of

Enjoy the reading and I’m looking forward to an interesting discussion!