Monday, June 12, 2017


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 1:19 PM

The "bubble" passage in the previous post suggests a review of
a post from December 21, 2006, with the following images —


Update of 11:01 PM ET the same day, June 12, 2017 —

Related material for the Church of Synchronology

From a tech-article series that began on Halloween 2006 and
ended on the date of the above Geometry's Tombstones post —

Compare and contrast (from a post of Feb. 27, 2017) —

“Lord Arglay had a suspicion that the Stone would be
purely logical.  Yes, he thought, but what, in that sense,
were the rules of its pure logic?”

Many Dimensions  (1931), by Charles Williams

See also "The Geometry of Logic:
Finite Geometry and the 16 Boolean Connectives
by Steven H. Cullinane in 2007.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Ockham’s Bubbles

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 10:30 AM

Mathematics and Narrative, continued

"… a vision invisible, even ineffable, as ineffable as the Angels and the Universal Souls"

— Tom Wolfe, The Painted Word , 1975, quoted here on October 30th

"… our laughable abstractions, our wryly ironic po-mo angels dancing on the heads of so many mis-imagined quantum pins."

— Dan Conover on September 1st, 2011

"Recently I happened to be talking to a prominent California geologist, and she told me: 'When I first went into geology, we all thought that in science you create a solid layer of findings, through experiment and careful investigation, and then you add a second layer, like a second layer of bricks, all very carefully, and so on. Occasionally some adventurous scientist stacks the bricks up in towers, and these towers turn out to be insubstantial and they get torn down, and you proceed again with the careful layers. But we now realize that the very first layers aren't even resting on solid ground. They are balanced on bubbles, on concepts that are full of air, and those bubbles are being burst today, one after the other.'

I suddenly had a picture of the entire astonishing edifice collapsing and modern man plunging headlong back into the primordial ooze. He's floundering, sloshing about, gulping for air, frantically treading ooze, when he feels something huge and smooth swim beneath him and boost him up, like some almighty dolphin. He can't see it, but he's much impressed. He names it God."

— Tom Wolfe, "Sorry, but Your Soul Just Died," Forbes , 1996

"… Ockham's idea implies that we probably have the ability to do something now such that if we were to do it, then the past would have been different…"

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

"Today is February 28, 2008, and we are privileged to begin a conversation with Mr. Tom Wolfe."

— Interviewer for the National Association of Scholars

From that conversation—

Wolfe : "People in academia should start insisting on objective scholarship, insisting  on it, relentlessly, driving the point home, ramming it down the gullets of the politically correct, making noise! naming names! citing egregious examples! showing contempt to the brink of brutality!"

As for "mis-imagined quantum pins"…
journal on the date of the above interview— February 28, 2008


Illustration from a Perimeter Institute talk given on July 20, 2005

The date of Conover's "quantum pins" remark above (together with Ockham's remark above and the above image) suggests a story by  Conover, "The Last Epiphany," and four posts from September 1st, 2011—

BoundaryHow It WorksFor Thor's Day,  and The Galois Tesseract.

Those four posts may be viewed as either an exploration or a parody of the boundary between mathematics and narrative.

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." —A Wrinkle in Time

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

A Wrinkle in Time and Space

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:32 AM

Or:  Tom Wolfe in the Quantum Realm

Related posts: Search Log24 for Bubble.

Monday, May 13, 2019

“The Eyes of Orson Welles”…

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:49 PM

is a TCM special at 8 PM ET this evening.

A snow-globe phrase from April 28 —

Bauble, Babel . . . Bubble

Images including Plato's diamond on a tombstone

The "bubble" cited above —

For more metaphysical accounting, see
The Church of Synchronology.

Wednesday, March 27, 2019

The Level of the Line

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:18 PM

"And the songs were most perfect at the level of the line,
embodying the terse and clever brilliance that exists
in the best country music."

The New Yorker , Culture Desk
Postscript: Guy Clark, 1941-2016
By Ian Crouch, May 17, 2016

"To find me a bubble for the spirit level"

Seamus Heaney, 13 April 1939 – 30 August 2013

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Graphical Interfaces

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:52 AM

Thacker reportedly died on Monday, June 12, 2017.

This journal on that date —

Images including Plato's diamond on a tombstone

Thacker retired from Microsoft in February.

Thursday, January 26, 2017


Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:09 AM

(Continued from Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017)

"We have reached peak polarization."

— Olga Khazan in the online Atlantic  today,
     as quoted in the Muck Rack image below.

Perhaps not yet.

Consider the headline below,

"Why Trump Supporters Lie About the Inauguration Photo."

Consider also Olga's "Brain Bro" below in the context of 
the film "Limitless" and of the book A Wrinkle in Time .

See also all posts now tagged "Split."

Friday, April 24, 2015

Speak, Memory

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:30 AM

For "Blacklist" fans —

See also Mimsy.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Canticle for O’Connor

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

University Diaries  today has a meditation on
nothingness and the University of North Carolina.

She includes a picture by John Picacio that was done as a
cover illustration for the novel A Canticle for Leibowitz .

Related material:

A June 10 obituary for Msgr. Tim O'Connor, former rector
of Sacred Heart Cathedral in Raleigh, NC.

"To those who knew him, O’Connor’s aesthetic sense
was a defining quality. As rector at Sacred Heart Cathedral—
the seat of the bishop of Raleigh— he led a $500,000
renovation project in the late ’90s that refurbished the floors
and pews and installed art, such as painting the ceiling blue
with 14-karat gold leaf stars."

— Julian Spector — jspector@newsobserver.com

Some context:

Sermon in this journal last Sunday, June 9, which
was the reported date of Msgr. O'Connor's death.

Mary Chapin Carpenter in this journal on July 6, 2008:

Related art:

Ceiling of Raleigh's Sacred Heart Cathedral—

Some context for this  art:

From "Spider Robinson: The SF Writer as Empath"
by Ben Bova 

When Analog magazine was housed over at Graybar Building
on Lexington Avenue, our offices were far from plush. In fact,
they were grimy. Years worth of Manhattan soot clung to the
walls. The windows were opaque with grime. (What has this
to do with Spider Robinson? Patience, friend.)

Many times young science fiction fans would come to Manhattan
and phone me from Grand Central Station, which connected
underground with the good old Graybar. "I've just come to New 
York and I read every issue of Analog and I'd like to come up and
see what a science fiction magazine office looks like," they would
invariably say.

I'd tell them to come on up, but not to expect too much. My advice
was always ignored. The poor kid would come in and gape at the
piles of manuscripts, the battered old metal desks, and mountains
of magazines and stacks of artwork, the ramshackle filing cabinets 
and bookshelves. His eyes would fill with tears. His mouth would
sag open.

He had, of course, expected whirring computers, telephones with
TV attachments, smoothly efficient robots humming away, 
ultramodern furniture, and a general appearance reminiscent of a 
NASA clean room. (Our present offices, in the spanking new Condé
Nast Building on Madison Avenue, are a little closer to that dream.)

The kid would shamble away, heartsick, the beautiful rainbow-hued
bubble of his imagination burst by the sharp prick of reality.

"Funny how annoying a little prick can be." — Garry Shandling as Senator Stern

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Hope and Pope

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 4:59 AM

IMAGE- 'Hope of Heaven,' by John O'Hara, 1947 Avon paperback

Hope of Heaven , by John O'Hara
Avon paperback edition, 1947

   Heaven from all creatures hides the book of Fate,
All but the page prescribed, their present state:
From brutes what men, from men what spirits know:
Or who could suffer being here below?
The lamb thy riot dooms to bleed to-day,
Had he thy reason, would he skip and play?
Pleased to the last, he crops the flowery food,
And licks the hand just raised to shed his blood.
Oh, blindness to the future! kindly given,
That each may fill the circle, marked by Heaven:
Who sees with equal eye, as God of all,
A hero perish, or a sparrow fall,
Atoms or systems into ruin hurled,
And now a bubble burst, and now a world.
   Hope humbly, then; with trembling pinions soar;
Wait the great teacher Death; and God adore.
What future bliss, He gives not thee to know,
But gives that hope to be thy blessing now.
Hope springs eternal in the human breast:
Man never is, but always to be blest:
The soul, uneasy and confined from home,
Rests and expatiates in a life to come.

— Alexander Pope in An Essay on Man

Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday March 13, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:30 PM
Rat Psychology

Lawrence Summers, former president of Harvard, home of the rat psychology of Skinner and Quine, today offered a lesson in behavioral economics.

From a transcript of Summers’s remarks (for a video, see the previous entry)–

“An abundance of greed and an absence of fear on Wall Street led some to make purchases – not based on the real value of assets, but on the faith that there would be another who would pay more for those assets. At the same time, the government turned a blind eye to these practices and their potential consequences for the economy as a whole. This is how a bubble is born. And in these moments, greed begets greed. The bubble grows.

Eventually, however, this process stops – and reverses. Prices fall. People sell. Instead of an expectation of new buyers, there is an expectation of new sellers. Greed gives way to fear. And this fear begets fear.

This is the paradox at the heart of the financial crisis. In the past few years, we’ve seen too much greed and too little fear; too much spending and not enough saving; too much borrowing and not enough worrying. Today, however, our problem is exactly the opposite.

It is this transition from an excess of greed to an excess of fear that President Roosevelt had in mind when he famously observed that the only thing we had to fear was fear itself. It is this transition that has happened in the United States today.”

Related material

Spatial Practice,

Rat in maze

Spatial Practice,

Art exhibit of empty rooms in Paris at the Centre Pompidou

Voids, a Retrospective,”
an exhibit of empty rooms
that runs through March 23
at the Centre Pompidou

See also “Art Humor
 and “Conceptual Art.”

Friday March 13, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:15 PM
Radical Emptiness

Tom Conoboy on James Purdy’s novel Malcolm:

“Life, Purdy is telling us, is meaningless. Existence is absurd. It consists of events and happenings, all unavoidable, all simultaneously significant and meaningless. They touch you, wound even, ultimately kill, yet somehow existence appears to obtain in a bubble outside of the self. As Thomas M. Lorch describes it, ‘the novel portays humanity revolving about an abyss.'[1] What is real is not real, and what is not real becomes real. Malcolm describes himself as a ‘cypher’ and, in the end, his death affects no-one, least of all him.

Yet, through this, Purdy presents us with the final, and greatest, paradox. In presenting us with nothingness, and in deliberately describing the action in such bland and emotionless language, Purdy actually creates a sense of loss: there is nothing to lose, he is telling us, and yet we feel the loss greatly. What he does is to create a world of genuine nihilism, where nobody communicates, nobody connects, so that we can, in negative, imagine what a world in harmony might be like.”

[1] Thomas M. Lorch, “Purdy’s Malcolm: A Unique Vision of Radical Emptiness.” Wisconsin Studies in Contemporary Literature, Vol. 6, No. 2 (Summer, 1965), p. 212.

Today in The New York Times:

NY Times: James Purdy Has Died

See you in the
funny papers, Purdy.

Dagwood on Friday the 13th: Sadness of the echo from an empty refrigerator

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Saturday February 17, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 AM

Zen Mind, Empty Mind


A mathematician hopes for more exciting vulgarizations of his subject–

“I would hope that clever writers might point out how mathematics is altering our lifestyles and do it in a manner that would not lead Garfield the Cat to say ‘ho hum.'”

— Philip J. Davis, “The Media and Mathematics Look at Each Other” (pdf), Notices of the American Mathematical Society, March 2006

Part I:

“Our mathematical skills are assumed to derive from a special ‘mental vacuum state,’ whose origin is explained on the basis of anthropic and biological arguments, taking into account the need for the informational processes associated with such a state to be of a life-supporting character.  ESP is then explained in terms of shared ‘thought bubbles’ generated by the participants out of the mental vacuum state.”

— Nobel laureate Brian D. Josephson, Department of Physics, University of Cambridge, “String Theory, Universal Mind, and the Paranormal” (Dec. 2003)

Part II:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070217-Garfield2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Thanks to “Q” at Peter Woit’s weblog
for the link to Josephson.

Thursday, January 4, 2007

Thursday January 4, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Readings for wise men
on the date of
T. S. Eliot's death:

"A cold coming we had of it…."

"… a Church is to be judged by its intellectual fruits, by its influence on the sensibility of the most sensitive and on the intellect of the most intelligent, and it must be made real to the eye by monuments of artistic merit."

— T. S. Eliot, For Lancelot Andrewes: Essays on Style and Order, published by Faber & Gwyer, London,  in 1928.

The visual "monuments of artistic merit" I prefer are not those of a Church– except, perhaps, the Church of Modernism.  Literary monuments are another matter.  I recommend:

The Death of Adam

The Novels of Charles Williams, and

Let Sleeping Beauties Lie.

Related material
on style and order:

Eliot's essay on Andrewes begins,
"The Right Reverend Father in God,
Lancelot Bishop of Winchester,
died on September 25, 1626."

For evidence of Andrewes's
saintliness (hence, that
of Eliot) we may examine
various events of the
25th of September.

("On September 25th most of
the Anglican Communion
commemorates the day on which
Lancelot Andrewes died."

In Log24,
these events are…

Sept. 25, 2002

"Las Mañanitas"

Sept. 25, 2003

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/030925-Bubbles2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.


Sept. 25, 2004

Sept. 25, 2005

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05B/050925-db3.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Sept. 25, 2006

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/060925-Medal2.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
(Yau and Perelman)

It seems that I am
somewhat out of step with
  the Anglican Communion…
though perhaps, in a sense,
in step with Eliot.

Note his words in
"Journey of the Magi":

Birth or Death?
There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt.
I had seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different;
this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us,
like Death, our death.

See also entries for
Dec. 27, 2006 (the day of
Itche Goldberg's death) —

Photo op for Gerald Ford

— "Least Popular
Christmas Present
" —

and for the same date
three years earlier

"If you don't play
some people's game, they say
that you have 'lost your marbles,'
not recognizing that,

while Chinese checkers
is indeed a fine pastime,
a person may also play dominoes,
chess, strip poker, tiddlywinks,
drop-the-soap or Russian roulette
with his brain.

One brain game that is widely,
if poorly, played is a gimmick
called 'rational thought.'"

Tom Robbins

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Thursday April 27, 2006

Filed under: General — m759 @ 4:08 PM

From today’s online
Harvard Crimson:

The image “http://log24.com/log/pix06/060427-McCafferty.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

From an Amazon.com review
of McCafferty’s latest book:

Charmed Thirds was a HUGE disappointment! The main character I once loved has turned into someone vulgar and annoying. Far from the intelligent young woman she was in the first two books, she is now a cliche: a drunken, promiscuous, directionless bubblehead of a college coed.”

See also the previous entry, Charm,
which quotes Thomas Pynchon —

“For every kind of vampire,
 there is a kind of cross.”
 — Gravity’s Rainbow

— and an entry of April 8
that contains the following
“kind of cross” —

3 PM

Friday, September 26, 2003

Friday September 26, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:28 PM

A Mass for
Rosh Hashanah

In memory of playwright Herb Gardner, who died on Wednesday, Sept. 24, 2003, in honor of the Jewish New Year, Rosh Hashanah, which begins at sunset today, and in celebration of T. S. Eliot’s birthday, which is today, here is an illustrated Mass from the Catholic News Service dated Sept. 24 (Saint Herb’s Day):

Proposed Vatican document on liturgy returned to drafting committee

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

ROME (CNS) — A proposed Vatican document on liturgical norms was sent back to its drafting committee after cardinals and bishops raised some objections and encouraged some changes.

Among other things, the draft presented to consulting prelates in June reportedly discouraged the distribution of Communion under the forms of both bread and wine and said altar girls were permissible only for a good reason.

 cards of unparalleled fabulosity

See also the two previous entries,
and “Max’s Hawaiian Ecstasies” in
Gardner’s play “The Goodbye People.”

For a musical accompaniment to this
requiem for Gardner,
 the “Aloha Mass,”
click here.

at the

The Mass, at Max’s Hawaiian Ecstasies
in Paradise, will conclude with
Simply Irresistible,” sung by
Saint Robert Palmer and performed by…

Irresistible Grace.

The role of the congregation will, as usual,
be performed by George Plimpton.
Payment for our sins will be made by
Johnny Cash.

Thursday, September 25, 2003

Thursday September 25, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 3:57 PM

In Memory of Playwright
 Herb Gardner

eBay item 3243620848:

“Up for auction is a Hawaiian hula girl music box. It plays ‘Tiny Bubbles’ and spins around. It is approx. 12″ tall and the top part of the body is made of hard plastic. It is in great condition.”


Wednesday, January 29, 2003

Wednesday January 29, 2003

Filed under: General — m759 @ 6:09 PM

Inaugural Address
for Cullinane College


The Prisoner

Cullinane College was scheduled to open its doors officially on January 29, 2003.  The following might have been an appropriate inaugural address.

From The Prisoner: Comments
 on the Final Episode, “Fall Out”

“When the President asks for a vote, he says: ‘All in favor.’ But he never asks for those opposed. (Though it appears that none will be opposed — and though he says its a democratic assembly, it is hardly that. The President even says that the society is in a ‘democratic crisis,’ though without democracy present, it’s just a sham.)

#48/Young Man sings ‘Dry Bones,’, which is his rebellion (notice its chaotic effect on ‘society’). But then the song gets taken over, ‘polished,’ and sung by a voice-over (presumably set up by #1). Does this mean that society is stealing the thunder (i.e. the creative energy) of youth, and cheapening it, or does it mean that youth is just rebelling in the same way that their fathers did (with equal ineffectiveness)? Perhaps it is simply a comment on the ease with which society can deal with the real rebellion of the 1960’s, which purported to be led by musicians; one that even the Beatles said was impossible in ‘Revolution.'”

President: Guilty! Read the Charge!

#48 is guilty, of something, and then the society pins something on him.”

The Other Side of the Coin

The Weinman Dime

From the CoinCentric website:

In 1916, sculptor Adolph A. Weinman produced a new design for the dime called the Liberty Head type. The motif features Miss Liberty facing left, wearing a Phrygian cap with wings, symbolizing “liberty of thought”. The word “LIBERTY” encircles her head, with “IN GOD WE TRUST” and the date below her head.

The reverse depicts Roman fasces, a bundle of rods with the center rod being an ax, against a branch in the background. It is a symbol of state authority, which offers a choice: “by the rod or by the ax”. The condemned was either beaten to death with the rods or allowed the mercy of the ax. The words “UNITED STATES OF AMERICA” and “ONE DIME” surround the border. “E PLURIBUS UNUM” appears at the lower right.

Excerpt from the poem that Robert Frost (who died on this date in 1963) meant to read at the 1961 inauguration of John F. Kennedy:

It makes the prophet in us all presage
The glory of a next Augustan age
Of a power leading from its strength and pride,
Of young ambition eager to be tried,
Firm in our free beliefs without dismay,
In any game the nations want to play.
A golden age of poetry and power
Of which this noonday’s the beginning hour.

I greatly prefer Robinson Jeffers’s “Shine, Perishing Republic“:

While this America settles in the mould of its vulgarity,
    heavily thickening to empire,
And protest, only a bubble in the molten mass, pops and sighs out, 
    and the mass hardens,
I sadly smiling remember….

See also the thoughts on Republic vs. Empire in the work of Alec Guinness (as Marcus Aurelius and as Obi-Wan Kenobi).

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