Tuesday, June 01, 2010


:: spring 2010 ::

World events backdrop: oil continues to spew, repeating events of 25 years ago according to Glenn, when the same sequence of repairs was attempted to no avail. Going through the motions. And the jigsaw puzzle of nations continues to defy solution, because nations are the product of lesser minds, were never God-given (human contrivances, an attempt at self-organization -- many valuable lessons learned).

The neighbors actually did repaint Sunnyside Piazza, looking good. I wandered by there with my camera, between computer jobs. We went looking for Hebrew brand beer at Zupan's, which we found in Pomegranate flavor, but it's the double IPA we were looking for. Dead Guy was on sale, along with another one. Thai soup with sandwich. Shades of Gothenberg. I miss Vilnius as well, glad Aiste is a Facebook friend, though I can't decipher most of what she writes. Greetings to Sir Laura, and to Steve Holden in Hong Kong (both PSF, Aiste should be if she's not).

Trey and Mike D. delivered some planters. LinZ did her Food Not Bombs run today. I filled in last week so she could work on repairing her rib cage.

The idea of a Beauty Pageant for Queen of the Space-fillers sounds kinda retro sexist, rather Rose Parade (there's a Rose Queen, high schools compete). Part of the fun is no hexahedron even makes the first cut. King Qyoob is thrown from his throne. Then there's this business of not being even-handed, being biased. Our Queen should be able to conceal her bias (orientation), is how the analogy works. I'm alluding to the B-module, which shows up as either left (+) or right (-), yet outwardly she has all the same shapely angles, either way.

The logjam of nations, in some sense a failure, in some sense lasting karma, in some sense a projection of our obedience to eternal principles, is captured in the movie The Terminal with Tom Hanks. The airport shows lots of octet-truss shots. The limbo of "nowhere / everywhere" is what airports seem good at projecting, that "space between nations" (like where the duty free shops tend to be). The Global University has roots in this limbo. Many of our students have no passports, no travel documents, no citizenship in any country. They fell through the cracks. World Game includes them, as more than statistics.

I got some polyhedra in the mail today, Made in Korea. My thanks to Gary of Pedagoguery Software of Canada.

Notice how I have no problem continuing to mention countries -- a familiar calculus. I like the stamps, money, flags and souvenirs. I also recognize virtual nations, closer to states of mind in some ways.

Imagine a Buddhist state of Samsara, with Nirvana the state capital (like Olympia of Washington). Or would Nirvana be more like Orlando? Is Nirvana an "after life"?

Many Xtians have questions about these "exotic cults" (as they might think of them, if not getting much tourism). Even Quakers are exotic to most Xtians, especially those of the "unprogrammed" variety (how does one deprogram an unprogrammed Friend?).

The folks in Louisiana have suffered plenty without this additional catastrophe of course. New Orleans is like Baghdad, though in the latter case, the disaster was man made, self inflicted. In both cases actually, counting the death-dealing oil plumes.

Poor engineering (e.g. FEMA trailers, decaying dikes) might be underlined as a cause of suffering in all of these scenarios. Poverty of mind, of the imagination, results in self-fulfilling "I told you so" prophesies coming true.

A more exultant engineering, clearly aimed at serving all humanity, would be easier to resonate with. Sometimes I think the free software movement got that ball rolling.

"World domination" in that geek subculture meant an end to domineering "owner enforced" selfishness. The workers co-owned the code, reaped the fruits of using their own heads -- what's under the "thinking cap" in capitalism. "Brain in body, body in mind" is what some say, projecting "mind" as like "the Matrix". That's pretty est-like (branching off Zen?).

Having wars about nations seems dark ages and retro, given how they're on the ropes to begin with, with the flagship USA taking on debt like there's no tomorrow. GST is switching the circuits, to where we speak more sensibly about energy inputs and workflows. "Not with a bang but a whimper" is how it would be, to ignite a big row over that which was never God-given.

The planet Earth on the other hand... now here's a Promised Land worth protecting. We'd need a Global University to do that. Maybe MIT will show us how it's done. Princeton? Cal Tech? Standford? We'll need a blend.

Speaking of Standford, we've been hearing from Keith Devlin's corner, where an Apollo Project for sharing precision thinking is planned, at least in a small corner thereof. I've not been able to trace the connections between Dr. Devlin and Dr. Benson, in case there's some overlap in the realm of Algebra. From my angle, it's more a Cult of Athena business (wisdom, defense, also music), with Algebra City a source of algorithms. We're feeding Pentagon Math with that NCLB Polyhedron and Polynomial: sounds cryptic, I realize. Other blog posts explain.

Trevor posted about still-standing Dymaxion Deployment Units or DDUs. Bucky was helping to get the idea of inexpensive, manufactured housing off to a good start. Bulter continued to reap the benefits of vending commercialized living quarters.