Monthly Archives: March 2018

A Madman Dreams of Turing Machines

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 8.07.22 PM“We all prize a resolution, a gratifying ending, completeness and unity, but we are surrounded by incompleteness.”

“…then the undertow yanked him and he sank heavily in a viscous miasma, the pressure so imposing, he wondered why no one else could see the substance of his misery.”

“There is no ending, I’ve tried to invent one but it was a lie and I don’t want to be a liar. The story will end where it began, in the middle. A triangle or a circle, searching for a treasure buried in the woods, on the street, in books on empty trains. Craving an amulet, a jewel, a reason, a purpose, a truth. I can almost see it on the periphery, just where they said it would be glistening at me from the far edges of every angle I search.”

 

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Sleepwalkers

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 7.57.08 PMMan’s Changing Vision of the Universe

6000 years ago when the human mind was half asleep Chaldean priests began scanning stars, making maps and time tables of their motions.  Their star movements were confined to a narrow lane called the Zodiac, which is divided into 12 sections each names after a constellation of fixed stars in the area.

Greeks take over: Pythagoras of Samos – Founder of a new religious philosophy and the founder of Science, as the world is understood today.

Numbers were sacred, eternal – everything else was perishable; they are the nature not of matter but of mind.

Ionian philosophers were materialists searching for what the universe was made of. Pythagoras’ inquiry was of form/proportion and pattern. What was our relation to the universe NOT what is the universe.

Axis of Pythagoras’ system – music/numbers harmony/proportion.

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Epistemic Humility

Screen Shot 2018-03-02 at 7.48.07 PMTo hold your own knowledge to be suspect: Someone heavily introspective, tortured by the awareness of his own ignorance. She lacks the courage of the idiot, yet has the rare guts to say, “I don’t know.”

Montagine was one of these types. He accepted human weakness and the limitations of our rationality — as the flaws that make us human.

If you believe in free will – you can’t truly believe in social science.

Daniel Dennett: Philosopher: Most potent use of our brain is the ability to project conjectures into the future and play the counterfactual game — we think before we act – “anticipation machines”

Trevor’s Theory of self-deception – supposed to orient us favorably toward the future.

Deterministic chaos – masquerades as randomness but chaotic systems have entirely predictable properties; they are just hard to know.

Learn to read history but do not draw casual links – try not to reverse engineer too much.

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Sleepwalkers

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March 3, 2018 · 10:45 am

Jenny Holzer

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March 2, 2018 · 9:02 pm