Thursday, April 30, 2015
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
Tuesday, April 28, 2015
Monday, April 27, 2015
Cross of Black and Gray
See also "Why do Muslims pray five times daily?".
This suggests …
The Beast from Hell's Kitchen
For some thoughts on mapping trees into
linear arrays, see The Forking (March 20, 2015).
See also Pitchfork in this journal.
An Oprah-related quote from the Tuesday, April 7,
ceremonial dedication of the Maya Angelou stamp—
“They say Easter was Sunday, but we are still
having church,” promised MSNBC talk show
host Melissa Harris-Perry, the ceremony’s emcee…."
In that spirit … a different sort of kitchen —
Sunday, April 26, 2015
A Search for The One.
"It was a bright cold day in April,
and the clocks were striking thirteen."
The title appears as a joint heading for three reviews
of Norway-related books on the front page of the print
version of today's New York Times Sunday Book Review .
See as well Josefine Lyche in this journal.
Saturday, April 25, 2015
Thanks to David Lavery for the following:
"Voilà! Stevens has managed to create out of nothing a palpable imaginative space, an interiority without material dimensions, replete with its own achieved and accomplished music. And in truth, in a world of Heisenbergian uncertainties and shifting star masses, it may be enough for the dizzying, ever-shifting merry-go-round of the Faustian mind simply to slow down and let itself come to rest, at least for the moment."
— Paul Mariani, "God and the Imagination," Aug. 10, 1996
For Poetry Month
Book in progress: Shadows of the Truth
This book (to be published soon) can be viewed
as a sequel to Mathematics under the Microscope ,
but with focus shifted on mathematics as it was
experienced by children (well, by children who
became mathematicians). The cover is designed
by Edmund Harriss.
See also Harriss's weblog post of Dec. 27, 2008, on the death
of Harold Pinter: "The Search for the Truth Can Never Stop."
This suggests a review of my own post of Dec. 3, 2012,
"The Revisiting." A figure from that post:
See Richard Corliss's 1999 review of "The Matrix," "Popular Metaphysics."
You may be a storybook character after all!!!
This philosophic, fantastical journey is a new-fangled fairy-tale
where fun and unusual happenings are all too common, and
you—the reader—become a character just like Harvard or Kansas
and are subject to the all-knowing, all-powerful, author of the story.
This daring piece tests the bounds of reality and subtly suggests
that you should question everything you know —
While most people in this story believe they are real-life, walking
talking humans, a small, somewhat violent sect of society has
realized they are actually part of a book. They lash out and
demand that the story have a happy ending, and they'll whomever
they have to. [Sic] An enormous battle erupts catching Harvard
and Kansas trapped in the middle forced to rely on their cunning
and a little help from an extra-large talking tarantula to save the day.
Friday, April 24, 2015
“By groping toward the light we are made to realize
how deep the darkness is around us.”
— Arthur Koestler, The Call Girls: A Tragi-Comedy ,
Random House, 1973, page 118
This year's Class Day speaker at Harvard
will be Natalie Portman.
"The Cardinal seemed a little preoccupied today."
Thursday, April 23, 2015
"… they didn't really know
what was good
and was not good…."
"And what is good, Phaedrus,
And what is not good—
Need we ask anyone to tell us these things?"
— Epigraph to
Zen and the Art of
“Perhaps the philosophically most relevant feature
of modern science is the emergence of abstract
symbolic structures as the hard core of objectivity
behind– as Eddington puts it– the colorful tale
of the subjective storyteller mind.” — Hermann Weyl
(Philosophy of Mathematics and Natural Science ,
Princeton, 1949, p. 237)
See also Deathly Hallows.
Wednesday, April 22, 2015
Related material (click to enlarge) —
The above review is of an exhibition by the "Constellation" artist,
Carlos Amorales, that opened on Sept. 26, 2008 — "just in time for
Halloween and the Day of the Dead."
See also this journal on that date.
G. H. Hardy in A Mathematician's Apology —
What ‘purely aesthetic’ qualities can we distinguish in such theorems as Euclid’s or Pythagoras’s?
I will not risk more than a few disjointed remarks. In both theorems (and in the theorems, of course, I include the proofs) there is a very high degree of unexpectedness, combined with inevitability and economy. The arguments take so odd and surprising a form; the weapons used seem so childishly simple when compared with the far-reaching results; but there is no escape from the conclusions. There are no complications of detail—one line of attack is enough in each case; and this is true too of the proofs of many much more difficult theorems, the full appreciation of which demands quite a high degree of technical proficiency. We do not want many ‘variations’ in the proof of a mathematical theorem: ‘enumeration of cases’, indeed, is one of the duller forms of mathematical argument. A mathematical proof should resemble a simple and clear-cut constellation, not a scattered cluster in the Milky Way.
A post at noon on Sunday, April 19, 2015, with a link,
"Ageometretos medeis eisito," to an image search
for "large Desargues configuration" that includes …
A review, dated April 20, 2015, of "After Hours at the
Harvard Art Museums" in The Harvard Crimson
An article, also dated April 20, 2015, in Harvard Magazine
titled "Harvard Installs 'Triangle Constellation'"
A companion-piece to Sunday's Sermon for the Cruelest Month —
Click the above paragraph for further details.
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
Update of 11:45 PM ET the same day —
See also remarks by Freeman Dyson on the novel
A High Wind in Jamaica quoted here Sunday morning.
From an introduction to the novel by Francine Prose:
"In the end, everything in this luminous, extraordinary novel
is so much the reverse of what we think it should be, or what
we would expect, that we are left entirely disoriented—
unsure of what anything is, or should be. The effect is
disturbing and yet beautiful, fantastic but also frighteningly
true to life."
See also Little Mermaid in this journal.
This year, Easter Sunday fell on April 5. NBC on that date:
"It was necessary to call upon the full force of Roman law…"
From a Washington Post obituary yesterday evening —
"The Nazarene's crucifixion sends a message…."
Related material: Log24 on April 5, 2015.
Monday, April 20, 2015
Continued from a post of April 10, 2015 —
Related material: Manifest O (April 1, 2015).
1. Serenade them with an Acapella Group
Nothing is more romantic than a group of students
showing up at your door and singing to you
for three minutes. The gesture is simple enough
to pull off. Ask one of your friends in an acapella
group for a quick favor. With so many acapella
groups on campus, you’re bound to find someone
to help you woo your potential date with the hot fire
of four part harmonies.
This suggests …
A Song for Kristen
Click image for the song.
Sunday, April 19, 2015
"The Cardinal seemed a little preoccupied today."
See also a post found via a search in
this journal for "April 19 ".
Remarks by Freeman Dyson in today's New York Times
Sunday Book Review (page BR8)…
"Who is your favorite fictional hero or heroine?
The child Emily in 'A High Wind in Jamaica,'
by Richard Hughes. She murders a friendly
sea captain and lays the blame on members
of the crew, who are hanged for the crime.
To have survived for millions of years in the
lawless world of human evolution, parents
must love children even when children do evil,
and children must be ruthless and lovable.
Emily is ruthless and lovable."
A remark by young Emily in the film of "High Wind"—
"Church of England."
For another version of "lovable," see The Eve of St. Agnes, 2003.
Saturday, April 18, 2015
Update of 8:19 PM ET —
Trailer for a recent Crombie documentary, "Waiting for Ishtar,"
that has not yet been released:
See Southwest + Furthers in this journal.
Kyle Smith on April 15 in the New York Post —
"The ludicrous action thriller 'Beyond the Reach'
fails to achieve the Southwestern noir potency
of 'No Country for Old Men,' but there’s no denying
it brings to mind another Southwestern classic
about malicious pursuit: the Road Runner cartoons."
Legespiel Meets Würfelspiel in…
Gift of the Third Kind
(April 7, 2007), featuring Ellen Yi-Luen Do —
the current home page of Ellen Yi-Luen Do,
now at Georgia Tech, and…
- a page about her ACME Lab —
Welcome to ACME lab!
Yes, the name is both confusing and has
We call it ACME Creativity Machine Environment –
We like recursive ideas.
Friday, April 17, 2015
A book first published by Doubleday in 1979:
From Fritz Leiber's 1959 sci-fi classic "Damnation Morning" —
She drew from her handbag a pale grey
gleaming implement that looked by quick turns
to me like a knife, a gun, a slim sceptre, and a
delicate branding iron— especially when its tip
sprouted an eight-limbed star of silver wire.
“The test?” I faltered, staring at the thing.
“Yes, to determine whether you can live in the
fourth dimension or only die in it.”
See also Philanthropic Numerology (St. Luke's Day, 2012).
Thursday, April 16, 2015
Freeman Dyson in a New York Times interview online today:
"Who is your favorite novelist of all time?
Octavia Butler, a tall black lady who died in 2006.
She wrote 'Parable of the Sower' and 'Parable of
the Talents,' two books that are normally classified
as science fiction but are more concerned with
theology than with science. The main character in
both stories is a black woman who survives
apocalyptic disasters and becomes the founder of
a new religion in California."
See also Octavia Butler in this journal.
"Celebrate National Library Week 2015 (April 12-18, 2015)
with the theme "Unlimited possibilities @ your library®."
See also Library of Hell.
A page from Princeton University Press on March 18, 2012:
… "mathematics and narrative…." (top of page xvii).
"Visibilities are not forms of objects, nor even forms
that would show up under light, but rather forms of
luminosity which are created by the light itself and
allow a thing or object to exist only as a flash, sparkle
— Deleuze, Foucault
Clap if you believe in Plotnitsky .
From his "Teaching" page —
|Capitalism and Paranoia, Capitalism and Schizophrenia: Foucault, Deleuze, and Modernist Novel. The course offers a comprehensive examination of the works of Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze, and of the relationships between their ideas and the culture of modernity and, then, postmodernity, as the culture of capitalism. The course also considers, through the optics of Foucault's and Deleuze's work, how this culture is reflected in modernist and postmodernist novels of the twentieth century, and in the genre of the novel itself, which has been the dominant and indeed defining literary genre of this culture, from early to late capitalism. While Foucault's and Deleuze's work may be seen as a radical philosophical critique of modernity and capitalism by the philosophical means, the novel enacts an analogous and often equally radical literary critique. The works to be discussed include selections from Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud; Foucault's The Order of Things, Discipline and Punish, History of Sexuality, vol.1, and selected essays; and substantive selections from such works by Deleuze (and Deleuze and Guattari) as Anti-Oedipus, A Thousand Plateaus, and Foucault, as well as several shorter essays. Among the works of fiction to be considered are Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man; Kafka's The Trial; Woolf's Orlando; and Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49.|
Wednesday, April 15, 2015
For both, a link.
See a newsletter of the Mathematical Association of America
(MAA) on April 15, 2009. Excerpts, with updated links:
"Michael Starbird's Distinguished Lecture, simply titled
"'Rick's Tricky Six Puzzle: S5 Sits Specially in S6'
See as well a related Log24 post of Nov. 5, 2012.
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
The Dreaming Jewels continued
"… the icosahedron and dodecahedron have the same properties
of symmetry. For the centres of the twenty faces of an icosahedron
may be joined to form a regular dodecahedron, and conversely, the
twelve vertices of an icosahedron can be placed at the centres
of the faces of a suitable dodecahedron. Thus the icosahedral and
dodecahedral groups are identical , and either solid may be used to
examine the nature of the group elements."
— Walter Ledermann, Introduction to the Theory
of Finite Groups (Oliver and Boyd, 1949, p. 93)
Salvador Dali, The Sacrament of the Last Supper
Omar Sharif and Gregory Peck in Behold a Pale Horse
Above: soccer-ball geometry.
See also …
See as well
"In Sunlight and in Shadow."
Monday, April 13, 2015
(Continued from April 9)
*… Or a Spearhead?
Würfel-Märchen continued …
"Again, you are free to interpret these symbols
as you like."
See also …
and The Library of Hell.
Continued from December 5, 2002 —
Braucht´s noch Text?
Un-magical realism for Montevideo.
(A sequel to yesterday's Orthodox Easter posts)
This morning's Google News —
The New York Times on the late Günter Grass —
"Many of Mr. Grass’s books are phantasmagorical
mixtures of fact and fantasy, some of them inviting
comparison with the Latin American style known as
magical realism. His own name for this style was
From p. xii of the 2005 second edition of a book discussed
in yesterday's Orthodox Easter posts —
(Click image to enlarge.)
Early editions of The Heart of Mathematics include
Gary Larson's legendary Hell's Library "Far Side" cartoon.
Books in Hell's Library include Big Book of Story Problems ,
More Story Problems , and Even More Story Problems .
— Adapted from a review of the 2000 first edition
See also Mathematics and Narrative in this journal.
Sunday, April 12, 2015
Today is Easter Sunday in the Orthodox Church.
"Ancient Symbol of Heaven"
From "Misunderstood Masterpiece," an essay
in the Jesuit weekly America on Salvador Dali's
"The Sacrament of the Last Supper" —
"The setting is distinctive: a dodecahedron,
or 12-sided space, that we perceive in the
pentagon-shaped windowpanes behind the
table. The architecture is also transparent.
The dodecahedron is an ancient symbol of
heaven, where this event is taking place.
This is the realm of the Father…."
— Michael Anthony Novak, Nov. 5, 2012
Scholarship, Not Rhetoric
A PDF of the Kotrc paper is available online.
The Dodecahedron .
This Platonic solid appears, for instance, on the cover
of a colorful text titled The Heart of Mathematics
(Wiley, third edition, 2009) —
For serious students, here is a better book, more in
keeping with the above authors' later interpretation
of the fifth element as change :
Saturday, April 11, 2015
"But what was supposed to be the source of a compound's
authority? Why, the same as that of all new religious movements:
direct access to the godhead, which in this case was Creativity."
— Tom Wolfe, From Bauhaus to Our House
— Burger and Starbird, The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking (2012)
Video published on Oct 19, 2012
"In this fifth of five videos, mathematics professor
Michael Starbird talks about the fifth element
in his new book, The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking ,
co-authored with Williams College professor
Edward B. Burger."
For more on the Starbird manifesto, see Princeton University Press.
An excerpt —
From a New York Post review of "Clouds of Sils Maria,"
a film that opened yesterday —
"Assayas [the writer-director] evidently thinks he’s
being daring and original and avant-garde in leaving
so much open-ended. But you can tell what really
interests him isn’t doing the work of a serious artist
but the comfy trappings of one — the swank dining
rooms, the posh cars with drivers always at the ready.
What’s French for bourgeois? Never mind.
'Clouds' isn’t a film but an idea for a film —
unfinished, unsatisfying, undergraduate."
From this date last year:
"Here was finality indeed, and cleavage!"
Friday, April 10, 2015
"It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of …."
See also OCODE .
This is Holy Week in the Orthodox Church.
"The Greek Orthodox tradition is for eggs to be dyed red
on Holy Thursday in commemoration of the Last Supper…."
The Borisov CV is from Math Humor for Holy Week.
Thursday, April 9, 2015
From an informative April 7 essay in The Nation —
In his marvelous book Is That a Fish in Your Ear?: Translation and the Meaning of Everything , David Bellos demonstrates many of the ways that translation is not only possible but ubiquitous, so thoroughly woven into the fabric of our daily lives—from classrooms to international financial markets, from instruction manuals to poems—that if translation were somehow to become impossible, the world would descend into the zombie apocalypse faster than you can say “je ne sais quoi ."
— "Forensic Translation," by Benjamin Paloff
"Yankee Doodle went to London" — Song lyric
— The Missing ART (Log24, November 7th, 2014)
"Faculty Approve Theater Concentration, Affirmation
of Integrity" — Recent Harvard Crimson headline
Wednesday, April 8, 2015
See also Asimov + Tequila in this journal.
See also "Derrida + Serpent" in this journal.
"Russell makes an extremely interesting and
important proposal about proper names."
"The Names (1982) is the seventh novel of
American novelist Don DeLillo. The work, set
mostly in Greece, is primarily a series of
character studies, interwoven with a plot about
a mysterious 'language cult' that is behind
a number of unexplained murders."
For other fiction about language cults,
see Dan Brown.
Tuesday, April 7, 2015
Monday, April 6, 2015
The New York Times tonight on the late
cabaret singer Julie Wilson, who reportedly
died at 90 in Manhattan on Easter Sunday —
"In 1988 she was nominated for a Tony Award
for best featured actress in a Broadway musical
for her role as the owner of a speakeasy in
Peter Allen’s 'Legs Diamond.'"
The church connection —
"The reviews were unanimously negative,
with particular disbelief at Peter Allen's
attempts to play so totally against type
as a suave lothario. Frank Rich
commented that the evening's most
compelling drama was watching Allen
figure out 'what to do with his hands.'
The failure of the musical was so total
that it compelled the Nederlander
Organization to finally sell the beloved
but flop-prone Mark Hellinger Theatre to
the Times Square Church, which still
owns it." — Wikipedia
See also Times Square Church in this journal.
— Heidegger, “Hölderlin and the Essence of Poetry,”
translated by Douglas Scott, in Existence and Being ,
Sunday, April 5, 2015
This post was suggested by today's
Easter message from academic David Lavery —
For a reply, see …
"Horus Manure: Debunking the Jesus/Horus Connection,"
a post from the weblog Jon Sorensen: Blogging on
Catholic Apologetics , dated October 25, 2012.
The phrase "blood libel" also comes to mind.
* "Documenting Victims" was the title of a post in this journal
from the same date as Sorensen's post— Oct. 25, 2012.
Saturday, April 4, 2015
For the Easter Vigil:
Holy Saturday is, according to tradition, the day of
the harrowing of Hell.
The above passage on "Die Figuren der vier Modi
im Magischen Quadrat " should be read in the context of
a Log24 post from last year's Devil's Night (the night of
October 30-31). The post, "Structure," indicates that, using
the transformations of the diamond theorem, the notorious
"magic" square of Albrecht Dürer may be transformed
into normal reading order. That order is only one of
322,560 natural reading orders for any 4×4 array of
symbols. The above four "modi" describe another.
Friday, April 3, 2015
APRIL 03, 2015 4:38 PM ET
From the article:
Over the Rainbow
Suggested by the excellent 2010 film "The Ghost Writer"—
For the title, see Wikipedia.
A related quote:
Philip Kennicott in The Washington Post, July 3, 2009—
"The Vogels help allay deep cultural fears
within the art world— fears that art is elitist,
or some kind of confidence game,
or not a serious endeavor (a fear that has
dogged art since at least the time of Plato)."
See also the home page of Cornell mathematician Steven Strogatz:
Strogatz is the author of "Why Pi Matters."
Thursday, April 2, 2015
… in memory of Tom Koch, comedy writer for Bob and Ray,
who reportedly died at 89 on March 22 —
Part I: "Nuanced" in the recent post Metamorphosis
(from March 22, the above date):
"We wanted the film to go through a very subtle
and nuanced visual metamorphosis."
Part II: Other instances of "nuanced" in this journal.
Wednesday, April 1, 2015
For Tschira in this journal, see Stiftung .
The title was suggested by
The "O" of the title stands for the octahedral group.
See the following, from http://finitegeometry.org/sc/map.html —
||An invariance of symmetry The diamond theorem on a 4x4x4 cube, and a sketch of the proof.|
|83-10-01||Portrait of O A table of the octahedral group O using the 24 patterns from the 2×2 case of the diamond theorem.|
|83-10-16||Study of O A different way of looking at the octahedral group, using cubes that illustrate the 2x2x2 case of the diamond theorem.|
|84-09-15||Diamonds and whirls Block designs of a different sort — graphic figures on cubes. See also the University of Exeter page on the octahedral group O.|