The age of robots is beginning!  The upshot of robotics, which we will see in our lives, will be self-healing, adaptable, evolutionary machines capable of long distance flight and space travel as well as nano-scale exploration in a blood vessel.

My new friend Federico Pistono is an expert on robots – you’ll notice my music (Radio) at the end of this video!  Federico wrote a book called Robots Will Steal Your Jobs (And Why That’s Okay) (Amazon link).  I’m a few chapters in and it’s profound and terrific.  Federico is a genius and visionary (here’s his TED talk) who predicts a profound change in the way society and economy functions.  I want to talk more about this, but I haven’t finished the dang book yet.  Um.  Sorry.  I’m working on it.

It’s hard to make a robot.  As we become sophisticated automation geniuses, we uncover the subtle brilliance of nature and millions of years of evolution.  For example, as organic beings, there are complex counter-balances built in to every move we make (Walt Disney discovered that he could implement these and create more realistic, less jerky robotic characters at his theme parks).  And of course, the bigger challenge of true general intelligence is far from being uncovered (Kurzweil would disagree).  But fully autonomous robots become a more viable and explosive force every day.  And it all points towards one ultimate goal:  building a life-sized Bender Bending Rodríguez with a gleaming metal posterior.  (For those of you weirdos that aren’t obsessed Futurama junkies, Bender is guy on the thing… here’s wikipedia).

It’s time for Robo News, everybody!

  • The RoboEarth Cloud Engine is being launched to allow robots to universally share information and computation power.  This may be the humble start of something as enormous as the Internet.
  • Robot manufacturing is exploding.  Manufacturing plants will quickly start looking like science fiction.  The gap between concept and physical reality shortens.  Robots may have the potential to bring back manufacturing to The United States (it’s becoming even cheaper to hire a robot worker than outsource to a country like China).
  • This robot already rivals nature in running efficiency.  Here’s a bi-pedal mind-blower.  Here’s a dancing robot who loves cliches and can’t think of anything original.
  • New flic – worth checking out?  Pass the joint, man.

But what about building a working, life-sized Bender?  I think it’s a good idea.  You could inspire the interest of millions while doing groundbreaking science.

Suppose you started a Kickstarter campaign to realize your goal.  A beautiful Bender prototype.  A funny video.  I would think with the proper packaging, something like this would bloooow the hell up on the Innernet.

I imagine a fully autonomous, mobile robot that looks and acts like Bender.  Imagine your goal was to build an actual walking Bender that could execute basic locomotion and walk around and be a jerk.  I speculate that Bender’s basic body plan would be a great template to experiment with human-like bi-pedal automation.  Bender’s design is simple but versatile – he’s basically a giant keg on thick legs with two thick arms.  Plus, his mechanics would be easy to hide in his tank-like body.

It could also have useful and entertaining features.  It could move around and carry objects.  It could store things.  It could bend objects.  It could blend objects (I think someone built a Bender beer brewer already, and I also saw a Kickstarter for a robotic drink mixer).  It could be security.  It could “steal” your money and act as a sort of savings account.  It could say hilariously flippant things. It could burp fire.  What other wonderful things could your personal Bending unit do? 

I often try this thought experiment: if the world was made up of people very similar to me, what would the world look like?  Well, for sure we would be working on a real Bender robot like it was the damn cure for AIDS.

This real-life bending unit already exists!  It is severely lacking in the shiny-metal-ass department.

Hi, How Are You?

“The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”  -Isaac Asimov


(THUNK, THUNK.) Hello…. (THUNK…) is this thing on?

I’ve decided to start updating my blog again, but with a few changes to my manifesto.

Firstly, I intend on keeping it well-updated.

Secondly, I’ve decided not to shy away from controversial subjects.  This barbaric disregard of social niceties may offend you, so I apologize in advance.  In the past, if I made people upset and said something like “the Pope is kind of a dick”, I actually felt terrible when people predictably got annoyed.  I crack like an egg.  In the past, I’ve been insecure and sensitive.

And still am.  But this blog will also represent my personal journey into the world of not-giving-a-shit-what-other-people-think. I mean, I hate the idea of someone being turned off to my music due to my big mouth (I mean besides due to the vocals) and yet, after lots of reflection on the subject, I’m convinced that risking my reader’s feelings (and my own feelings) is worth the intellectual pursuit of truth.

And what makes me, an aging artist, a wannabe scientist, a guy who wears this shirt openly in public the authority on objective truth?  Good question.  Well, none, really.  You should totally decide for yourself.  Don’t be stupid.  Plus, I’ll also be posting lots of great music, science news, and updates on all my projects (which currently include records, a video game, and music videos).

By the way, I think I should take a moment to just say, hi, how are you?  How have you been?  I’ve really missed you guys… you CM fans have continued to inspire me, and because of you I’ve been creating hard.  I’ve been making the deepest records of my career, as well as some other exciting treats.

Which reminds me of my 3rd canon.  I want to encourage the focus to be on conversations as opposed to my measly essays.  I don’t expect that I’m always right.  I want you to convince me that I’m wrong.  I will be promoting logical and/or hilarious conversation.  Info-tain me.

Those subjects that are controversial in society often represent the edge of the known, the fringes of our science. Increasingly our planet is desperate for answers.  As physicist David Deutsch points out, the future is becoming less and less knowable, faster and faster.  One of my main goals will be to convince people that progress in knowledge is our species’ only hope.  Reason will be the deciding factor between a world of happiness, art, progress, and the end of disease (including aging), or a world of misery, death, hopelessness, and Friends reruns.

Yeah, yeah, I know, shut up and play a song.  I’m feeling that, man.  Been working on some stuff for hours and hours, every day, for almost two years.  All will be revealed.

Skeptical and optimistic,
Chris Merritt



Sorry for the lack of updates.  It won’t be like this for very long.  Hugs.  That is all.

Gravy Of God

Happy Thanksgiving! :)

As we peer deeper & deeper into space, we see violent, hostile objects bigger than we even understand. I’m thankful for the miracle of life.

I’m thankful for science; humanity’s only hope against bad ideas, limited resources, and one beautiful, ferocious bitch named Mother Nature.

I’m thankful that truth is powerful enough to break through the intensely effective brainwashing of superstition… there is hope for life.

I’m thankful for music – the song of man – expression in these lofty realms of sentience – the sexy, mathematical finesse of meat computers.

I’m thankful for all those fans that keep asking me about new music – you are the light of my life, the fire under my butt.  I’m working through Thanksgiving to finish two new albums, to ready sessions for mixing and mastering (some are mixed already).  Cruise Elroy is the height of my musicality and a joint effort with the two most talented and dedicated musicians I know, Jake Thro and Brett Ripley.  Future Caveman is a new project with such youthful, raw power and magic that I honestly don’t even know which album I’m more excited about.

Oh, and Your Moment is sounding awesome.  I’m not sure what we’re going to do with it.  The initial point was to capitalize on the popularity of the national TV commercial…. but it took quite a while to finish, and there are all kinds of licensing issues… we will be doing something with it…. it’s better than I ever imagined, it sounds like a radio hit.  We’ll be updating you REALLY soon, I swear.  Thanks for your patience.


Also…. Check out where I work now – Storefront Music is a special place. Insanely talented musicians, who also happen to have a crazy work ethic. We do lots of prime time TV ads. If you need tremendous, uncompromised music for film, video games, or song to sing your girlfriend that you say you wrote yourself in order to patch things up since she found those pictures on your computer of her best friend in a bathing suit… call us! We’ll take on anything! (check out the Maglite spot I did in “videos”…. a personal fav)

Here’s our write up in Source E Creative


Hey guys – a quick update!

I’m in Mad Scientist Mode.  I’m working day in and day out on finishing the most robust and articulate projects I’ve ever been involved with.

Your Moment is not done – I had a few issues with arrangement, and the producer and I went back and forth.  There is still a bit of work to be done, but I hope to have it done next week and move on with my life.  It’s great, but we all just have a million things going on.  I’m also writing in the extremely intense advertising world (which is great fun), navigating in NY, and I barely have time for fancy things like showers.  I still watch a physics lecture a night as I fall asleep and read on the train. Forget getting laid.  FORGET IT.

Meanwhile, Cruise Elroy is sounding…. ridiculous.  I’ll update you guys very very soon.  It’s hard to work on something for so long, without it going to the outside world.  But one thing I’ve learned is that it’s better to release a finished masterpiece.

I also have lots of subjects I want to talk about on the blog, and when things start falling into place, I will update you guys.  You will know.  😉

full length “Your Moment” in production

Hey, how are you?

There’s been a great response to the music I wrote and recorded in a recent Time Warner commercial. Here’s the video link! I’ve been convinced by the hugely positive reaction to do a full-length version of the song…

At first, I was concerned that doing a full-length version of the song would ultimately be incapable of living up to people’s expectations. It’s already on a pedestal. Often, it’s wise to remember if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

On playing around with arrangement ideas, however, I really got into it. Melodies and lyrics just jumped out at me, and it’s been a very creative, natural process. I’m working with a great producer on the single track, and so far it sounds great. We’re looking to finish the track by the first week of October, when it will be available on iTunes and Spotify and everywhere else.

It’s going to be a solid tune when it’s done! Think Ben Folds meets Brian Wilson meets…Darwin Deez?

And in the meantime – any Chris Merritt fans have any similar track ideas for recent converts? Here’s a link to the spot – leave song ideas in the comments! “Quinn”? “Show Me What You’re Made Of”? What else? (Links encouraged!)

Come one, come old. Here’s a new demo!

I don’t know what this is, but I made it yesterday with my brain and my computer-brain’s brain.

Cruise Elroy is developing quickly.  I promise.  Future Caveman sees the light at the end of the tunnel.  Which is first?  I’m not sure, bro and sis.

See the post above for info on the Time Warner ad.

See below for the explanation of life, the universe, and everything.

Or, check out this Chris Merritt album for free.

The choice is yours, and yours only, to make.


Brain Bendy!

Here’s an interview with a guy who thinks we’re living inside a computer.  This guy is great (I enjoyed the Moore’s Law stuff.), but I have some problems with his theory.  Feel free to smoke a joint and put on some Radiohead before you read this. (What’s that?  You’re already stoned?  Wow, than it must have blown your mind when I just called you out on it).

I’ve had thoughts on this topic as well, as all self-respecting philosopher-musicians/video-game nerds/physicist-wanabees have.

Turing and others have done incredible work on the nature of computation and how it relates to physics.  Computation is essentially a low-entropy and information-creating formation of matter.  Turing proposed that no calculation, given enough time, is impossible in our universe – even a calculation calculating an entire universe.

The problem is this – Terrile says that because nature seems to be “pixelated”, and because digital video games are inherently pixelated, it’s evidence that we are living in a simulation.  That’s a logical hand-wave – I think it’s more likely that the nature of computation, being limited by the laws of physics in this universe, would clearly reflect that.  In other words, games are discrete because nature is discrete.  And by the way, “discrete” has a hugely different meaning when you’re talking about a pixel on a computer screen and the tiniest particle in our “real world”.  Each pixel on the entire planet – every pixel on every screen – has literally billions of neutrinos (emitted from our sun) passing through it each second.  Not only that, but the Universe seems to be infinite, and to continue infinitely – not a discrete quantity there.  So basically, I’m trying to kill the thought process many will have when they read that article – “whoah, we’re basically in a video game already, dude.”

I tend to think that we’re information-creating beings – beautiful diamonds that evolve in a perfectly decaying universe, like our own.  We take increasing entropy and through creative and explanatory powers we make things with very low entropy.  Interesting, beautiful, profound things.  As we evolve quicker and quicker, we’ll certainly create virtual people.  Almost definitely, as far as I’m concerned.  But wouldn’t we find it ethical to let them know that it’s all a video game at some point?  Through all the suffering in the world, could an evolved super-intelligence really sit back and chill without intervention?

Here’s a beautiful thought.  Maybe in another universe in the multiverse an intelligent civilization evolved to the point where they set into motion another big bang, the birth of our universe.  And because they live in another universe, they can’t interact with their creation at all.  Maybe it’s the ultimate act of a dying universe – a species becomes hyper-intelligent and creates order and beauty throughout the universe – and then sets into motion a new universe or series of universes to play out however they play out.

It’s a profoundly beautiful thought to me.

MP3s, Time Warner spot, Cruise Elroy, etc

Hey guys….. thanks for all the comments on the Time Warner commercial.  I’ll post a link to it very soon.  My song on a prime-time television ad?  It’s very cool.  And just the beginning!  I just did a Google spot that is going out, and working on an IBM spot this week….

First things first.  If you don’t have any Chris Merritt tracks, here’s a bunch of free mp3s.  Dig in.  You’ll dig ’em.


Our newest project is a brand new band called Cruise Elroy and it will be unveiled very soon.  It will make your face explode?