Thursday, October 12, 2017

Gifted Continues

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 10:00 AM

Related material — See Gifted in this journal.

See as well Tulips.

Yesterday was the International Day of the Girl Child . . .
A related archived Wikipedia article on Kirkman's schoolgirl problem :

See also the previous post— "IPFS Version"— and https://ipfs.io/.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 9:18 PM

“Orson Scott Card offers a Christmas gift to his millions of fans
with A War of Gifts …. The War over Santa Claus will force
everyone to make a choice.”  — Publisher’s description

” ‘Peace on Earth, good will toward brats,’ said Peter. ”
— Orson Scott Card,  “Ender’s Stocking” in A War of Gifts

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Language Game

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:30 AM

Continued from Zen and Language Games
(a post of May 2, 2003, written on March 1, 2002)

From The Harvard Crimson  on St. Andrew's Day 2017 —

See also a larger, clearer view of the titles in the above file photo.

Dialogue suggested by the above Harvard Crimson  line
"I am a book today . . . . I know it all." —

A problem child* of sorts in the 2017 film "Gifted"

Mary- "Maybe this school isn't as great as you think it is."

Mary is returned to the place of her examination.

Professor- "Mary, you knew that the problem was incorrect, 
            why didn't you say anything?"

Mary- "Frank says I'm not supposed to correct older people. 
       Nobody likes a smart-ass."

* "Problem Child" was a working title related to a novel
    Heinlein wrote in 1941, Beyond This Horizon —

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

The Imaginary Professor

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 8:35 PM
- I was a teacher.
- You're being modest, aren't you?
  You were a professor at Boston University...
  Isn't that right?
- Yes, well, assistant professor.
- And what'd you teach?
- Philosophy. Truth and logic. 
  That sort of thing.

Read more: 

Compare and contrast with a real  Boston University professor,
John Stachel, quoted here on Sept. 5, 2017.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Science News

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — m759 @ 10:29 AM

Continued from the post Aesthetic Distance of July 28, 2017.

Friday, July 28, 2017

Prize Problem

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 9:57 PM

The last page of a novel published on Sept. 2, 2014 —

Related material —

The 2017 film Gifted  presents a different approach to the Navier-Stokes 

The figure below perhaps represents the above novel 's Millennium Prize
winner reacting, in the afterlife, to the film 's approach in Gifted .

Bustle  online magazine last April  —

Gifted ’s Millennium Prize Problems
Are Real & They Will Hurt Your Brain


See also other news from the above Bustle  date — April 11, 2017.

Aesthetic Distance

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:23 AM

In memory of a Disney "imagineer" who reportedly died yesterday.

From the opening scene  of a 2017 film, "Gifted":

Frank calls his niece Mary to breakfast on the morning she is 
to enter first grade. She is dressed, for the first time, for school —

- Hey! Come on. Let's move!
- No!
- Let me see.
- No.
- Come on, I made you special breakfast.
- You can't cook.
- Hey, Mary, open up. 
(She opens her door and walks out.)
- You look beautiful.
- I look like a Disney character.
  Where's the special?
- What?
- You said you made me special breakfast.

Read more: http://www.springfieldspringfield.co.uk/

Cube symmetry subgroup of order 8 from 'Geometry and Symmetry,' Paul B. Yale, 1968, p.21

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

In Memoriam

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:00 PM

For Loren D. Olson, Harvard '64:

"Even 50 years later, I remember his enthusiasm for a very young
and very gifted Harvard professor named Shlomo Sternberg, one
of whose special areas of interest was Lie groups. I still have no real
understanding of what a Lie group is, but not for want of trying on
Loren’s part. Loren was also quite interested in the thinking of the
theologians Paul Tillich and Reinhold Niebuhr, who were then at
Harvard. He attended some of their lectures, read several of their
books, and enjoyed discussing their ideas."

Harvard classmate David Jackson

See also today's previous post.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

“The Stone” Today Suggests…

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 12:31 PM

A girl's best friend?

The Philosopher's Gaze , by David Michael Levin,
U. of California Press, 1999, in III.5, "The Field of Vision," pp. 174-175—

The post-metaphysical question—question for a post-metaphysical phenomenology—is therefore: Can the perceptual field, the ground of perception, be released  from our historical compulsion to represent it in a way that accommodates our will to power and its need to totalize and reify the presencing of being? In other words: Can the ground be experienced as  ground? Can its hermeneutical way of presencing, i.e., as a dynamic interplay of concealment and unconcealment, be given appropriate  respect in the receptivity of a perception that lets itself  be appropriated by  the ground and accordingly lets  the phenomenon of the ground be  what and how it is? Can the coming-to-pass of the ontological difference that is constitutive of all the local figure-ground differences taking place in our perceptual field be made visible hermeneutically, and thus without violence to its withdrawal into concealment? But the question concerning the constellation of figure and ground cannot be separated from the question concerning the structure of subject and object. Hence the possibility of a movement beyond metaphysics must also think the historical possibility of breaking out of this structure into the spacing of the ontological difference: différance , the primordial, sensuous, ekstatic écart . As Heidegger states it in his Parmenides lectures, it is a question of "the way historical man belongs within the bestowal of being (Zufügung des Seins ), i.e., the way this order entitles him to acknowledge being and to be the only being among all beings to see  the open" (PE* 150, PG** 223. Italics added). We might also say that it is a question of our response-ability, our capacity as beings gifted with vision, to measure up to the responsibility for perceptual responsiveness laid down for us in the "primordial de-cision" (Entscheid ) of the ontological difference (ibid.). To recognize the operation of the ontological difference taking place in the figure-ground difference of the perceptual Gestalt  is to recognize the ontological difference as the primordial Riß , the primordial Ur-teil  underlying all our perceptual syntheses and judgments—and recognize, moreover, that this rift, this  division, decision, and scission, an ekstatic écart  underlying and gathering all our so-called acts of perception, is also the only "norm" (ἀρχή ) by which our condition, our essential deciding and becoming as the ones who are gifted with sight, can ultimately be judged.

* PE: Parmenides  of Heidegger in English— Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1992

** PG: Parmenides  of Heidegger in German— Gesamtausgabe , vol. 54— Frankfurt am Main: Vittorio Klostermann, 1992

Examples of "the primordial Riß " as ἀρχή  —

For an explanation in terms of mathematics rather than philosophy,
see the diamond theorem. For more on the Riß  as ἀρχή , see
Function Decomposition Over a Finite Field.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

For Law Day

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Harvard Gazette , March 4th, 2013:

"Winfrey will speak on May 30 during Commencement day’s
Afternoon Exercises, which serve as the annual meeting of
the Harvard Alumni Association. The exercises will take place
in the Tercentenary Theatre of Harvard Yard,
between Memorial Church and Widener Library."

On the 1977 Octavia Butler novel Mind of My Mind :

"The first chapter in a history that Butler has already taken up
at a much later stage in Patternmaster  (1976).
Mind of My Mind  begins with Doro, a ruthless mutant
as old as the pyramids who has spent the last 4,000 years
trying to breed a race in his own image. The culminating
experiment is his daughter Mary. But, to Doro's astonishment,
Mary's first instinct on attaining her full powers is to begin
building a mental community— a Pattern— out of the
wretched thousands of Doro's half-telepathic failures
and partial successes. Despite some ragged moments,
Butler is clearly on to a promising vein— something like
Zenna Henderson's 'People' stories without their
saccharine silliness. There's a lot of intrinsic energy in the
Pattern idea, and one wants to see where this erratic, gifted
storyteller will pick it up next."

Kirkus Reviews , Vol. XLV, No. 8 (1977), p. 453.

See this journal on Butler's dies natalis , the feast of St. Matthias, 2006.

Those who prefer Eastern approaches to religion may consult
Robert Thurman and his daughter Uma.

"Oprah, Uma. Uma, Oprah." — David Letterman

Sunday, October 28, 2012

In Like Flynn

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 7:00 PM

(Continued from this morning's father-son Flynns
and from two other Flynn father-son pairs. See the
fictional Tron pair on Jan. 5, 2011 and Dec. 2, 2011,
and the "Flynn effect" pair from Sept. 23, 2012.)

From a film

Being Flynn  (2012)
[first lines] 
Jonathan Flynn: America has produced only three classic writers – 
Mark Twain, J. D. Salinger and me. I'm Jonathan Flynn. 
Everything I write is a masterpiece. 

and from this journal

"The mind is its own place, and the places inhabited by the insane
and the exceptionally gifted are so different from the places where
ordinary men and women live, that there is little or no common ground
of memory to serve as a basis for understanding or fellow feeling."

—  The Doors of Perception , by Aldous Huxley

"Greet guests with a touch of glass."

—  The Perception of Doors , by Google —

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Point Counterpoint

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 6:00 PM

"We live together, we act on, and react to, one another; but always and in all circumstances we are by ourselves. The martyrs go hand in hand into the arena; they are crucified alone. Embraced, the lovers desperately try to fuse their insulated ecstasies into a single self-transcendence; in vain. By its very nature every embodied spirit is doomed to suffer and enjoy in solitude. Sensations, feelings, insights, fancies – all these are private and, except through symbols and at second hand, incommunicable. We can pool information about experiences, but never the experiences themselves. From family to nation, every human group is a society of island universes. Most island universes are sufficiently like one another to permit of inferential understanding or even of mutual empathy or "feeling into." Thus, remembering our own bereavements and humiliations, we can condole with others in analogous circumstances, can put ourselves (always, of course, in a slightly Pickwickian sense) in their places. But in certain cases communication between universes is incomplete or even nonexistent. The mind is its own place, and the places inhabited by the insane and the exceptionally gifted are so different from the places where ordinary men and women live, that there is little or no common ground of memory to serve as a basis for understanding or fellow feeling. Words are uttered, but fail to enlighten. The things and events to which the symbols refer belong to mutually exclusive realms of experience."

The Doors of Perception

"Greet guests with a touch of glass."

The Perception of Doors

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Misquoting Nietzsche

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 11:01 AM

Jim Holt in tomorrow’s New York Times

“Allow me to quote Nietzsche
(although I know that will be considered
by some to be in bad taste):

‘As the circle of science grows larger,
it touches paradox at more places.'”

A possible source for this misquotation—
Harvard University Press

IMAGE- Hilary Putnam misquoting Nietzsche on 'the circle of science'

A more accurate quotation—

Anyone who has ever experienced the pleasure of Socratic insight and felt how, spreading in ever-widening circles, it seeks to embrace the whole world of appearances, will never again find any stimulus toward existence more violent than the craving to complete this conquest and to weave the net impenetrably tight. To one who feels that way, the Platonic Socrates will appear as the teacher of an altogether new form of “Greek cheerfulness” and blissful affirmation of existence that seeks to discharge itself in actions— most often in maieutic and educational influences on noble youths, with a view to eventually producing a genius.

But science, spurred by its powerful illusion, speeds irresistibly towards its limits where its optimism, concealed in the essence of logic, suffers shipwreck. For the periphery of the circle of science has an infinite number of points; and while there is no telling how this circle could ever be surveyed completely, noble and gifted men nevertheless reach, e’er half their time and inevitably, such boundary points on the periphery from which one gazes into what defies illumination. When they see to their horror how logic coils up at these boundaries and finally bites its own tail— suddenly the new form of insight breaks through, tragic insight  which, merely to be endured, needs art as a protection and remedy.

— Friedrich Nietzsche, The Birth of Tragedy , translated by Walter Kaufmann (Modern Library)

Friday, February 15, 2008

Friday February 15, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 10:10 AM

Black monolith, 1x4x9

“Many dreams have been
brought to your doorstep.
They just lie there
 and they die there.”

Lyricist Ray Evans,
who died at 92
   one year ago today

Associated Press –
Today in History
Thought for Today:

“Like all dreamers I confuse
 disenchantment with truth.”
–Jean-Paul Sartre

The Return of the Author, by Eugen Simion:

On Sartre’s Les Mots

“Writing helps him find his own place within this vast comedy. He does not take to writing seriously yet, but he is eager to write books in order to escape the comedy he has been compelled to take part in.

The craft of writing appeared to me as an adult activity, so ponderously serious, so trifling, and, at bottom, so lacking in interest that I didn’t doubt for a moment that it was in store for me. I said to myself both ‘that’s all it is’ and ‘I am gifted.’ Like all dreamers, I confused disenchantment with truth.”

This is given in The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations (1999) as

Like all dreamers, I mistook disenchantment for truth.

Also from the AP’s
Today in History

Today’s Birthdays:
Actor Kevin McCarthy is 94.

Related material:

Hopkins at Heaven’s Gate
  (In context: October 2007)–

Anthony Hopkins at Dolly's Little Diner in Slipstream

“Dolly’s Little Diner–
Home from Home”

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Thursday June 14, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: — m759 @ 4:00 PM
A Flag for Sunset

"Kurt Waldheim, the former United Nations Secretary General and President of Austria whose hidden ties to Nazi organizations and war crimes was [sic] exposed late in his career, died today at his home in Vienna. He was 88." —The New York Times this afternoon

Related material:

From a story by
Leonard Michaels
linked to on
Aaron Sorkin's
birthday, June 9:

"Induction and analogy, in which he was highly gifted, were critical to mathematical intelligence.

It has been said that the unexamined life isn't worth living. Nachman wasn't against examining his life, but then what was a life? ….

… As for 'a life,' it was what you read about in newspaper obituaries. He didn't need one. He would return to California and think only about mathematics."


1.  A quotation from George Polya,
     the author of
     Induction and Analogy
     in Mathematics

2.  A quotation from an anonymous
     Internet user signed
     "George Polya"–
     "Steven Cullinane is a Liar."

3.  L'Affaire Dharwadker continues
     (May 31, 2007)

4.  Geometry for Jews

The image “http://log24.com/theory/images/070614-Whirl.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

"One two three four,
who are we for?"


Thursday, June 30, 2005

Thursday June 30, 2005

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:56 AM
On This Date:

In 1936, Gone with the Wind
was published.

In 1971, Monica Potter
was born.

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix05A/050630-Potter2A.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Amazon.com and
Tall Tall Trees

Related material:

There is one story and one story only
That will prove worth your telling,
Whether as learned bard or gifted child;
To it all lines or lesser gauds belong
That startle with their shining
Such common stories as they stray into.

Is it of trees you tell, their months and virtues,
Or strange beasts that beset you,
Of birds that croak at you the Triple will?
Or of the Zodiac and how slow it turns
Below the Boreal Crown,
Prison to all true kings that ever reigned?

Water to water, ark again to ark,
From woman back to woman:
So each new victim treads unfalteringly
The never altered circuit of his fate,
Bringing twelve peers as witness
Both to his starry rise and starry fall.

Or is it of the Virgin’s silver beauty,
All fish below the thighs?
She in her left hand bears a leafy quince;
When, with her right hand she crooks a finger, smiling,
How may the King hold back?
Royally then he barters life for love.

Or of the undying snake from chaos hatched,
Whose coils contain the ocean,
Into whose chops with naked sword he springs,
Then in black water, tangled by the reeds,
Battles three days and nights,
To be spewed up beside her scalloped shore?

Much snow is falling, winds roar hollowly,
The owl hoots from the elder,
Fear in your heart cries to the loving-cup:
Sorrow to sorrow as the sparks fly upward.
The log groans and confesses:
There is one story and one story only.

Dwell on her graciousness,
dwell on her smiling,
Do not forget what flowers
The great boar trampled down in ivy time.
Her brow was creamy as the crested wave,
Her sea-blue eyes were wild
But nothing promised that is not performed.

— Robert Graves,
To Juan at the Winter Solstice

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

Tuesday June 15, 2004

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 4:00 PM

Kierkegaard on death:

“I have thought too much about death not to know that he cannot speak earnestly about death who does not know how to employ (for awakening, please note) the subtlety and all the profound waggery which lies in death.  Death is not earnest in the same way the eternal is.  To the earnestness of death belongs precisely that capacity for awakening, that resonance of a profound mockery which, detached from the thought of the eternal, is an empty and often brash jest, but together with the thought of the eternal is just what it should be, utterly different from the insipid solemness which least of all captures and holds a thought with tension like that of death.”

Works of Love,
Harper Torchbooks, 1964, p. 324

For more on “the thought of the eternal,”  see the discussion of the number 373 in Directions Out and Outside the World, both of 4/26/04.

“… as an inscription over the graveyard gate one could place ‘No compulsion here’ or ‘With us there is no compulsion.’ “

Works of Love,
Harper Torchbooks, 1964, p. 324

“In the summer of 1943 I was eight, and my father and mother and small brother and I were in Peterson Field in Colorado Springs.  A hot wind blew through that summer…. There was not much to do…. There was an Officers’ Club, but no swimming pool; all the Officers’ Club had of interest was artificial blue rain behind the bar.  The rain interested me a good deal, but I could not spend the summer watching it, and so we went, my brother and I, to the movies.

We went three and four afternoons a week, sat on folding chairs in the darkened Quonset hut which served as a theater, and it was there, that summer of 1943 while the hot wind blew outside, that I first saw John Wayne. Saw the walk, heard the voice.  Heard him tell a girl in a picture called War of the Wildcats that he would build her a house, ‘at the bend in the river where the cottonwoods grow.’  As it happened I did not grow up to be the kind of woman who is the heroine in a Western, and although the men I have known have had many virtues and have taken me to live in many places I have come to love, they have never been John Wayne, and they have never taken me to that bend in the river where the cottonwoods grow.  Deep in that part of my heart where the artificial rain forever falls, that is still the line I wait to hear.

… When John Wayne spoke, there was no mistaking his intentions; he had a sexual authority so strong that even a child could perceive it.  And in a world we understood early to be characterized by venality and doubt and paralyzing ambiguities, he suggested another world, one which may or may not have existed ever but in any case existed no more: a place where a man could move free. could make his own code and live by it; a world in which, if a man did what he had to do, he could one day take the girl and go riding through the draw and find himself home free, not in a hospital with something wrong inside, not in a high bed with the flowers and the drugs and the forced smiles, but there at the bend in the bright river, the cottonwoods shimmering in the early morning sun.”

— Joan Didion,
   “John Wayne: A Love Song,” 1965

“He is home now. He is free.”

— Ron Reagan, Friday, June 11, 2004

“Beware, therefore, of the dead!  Beware of his kindness; beware of his definiteness, beware of his strength; beware of his pride!  But if you love him, then remember him lovingly, and learn from him, precisely as one who is dead, learn the kindness in thought, the definiteness in expression, the strength in unchangeableness, the pride in life which you would not be able to learn as well from any human being, even the most highly gifted.”

Works of Love,
   Harper Torchbooks, 1964, p. 328

Saturday, August 2, 2003

Saturday August 2, 2003

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 7:59 AM

Dark Desire

Film star dies after fight
with rock boyfriend

“…they seemed destined to become France’s golden couple: the fragile and gifted film actress from one of the country’s great theatrical families, and the radical rock star-poet with a genuine social conscience.

But yesterday Marie Trintignant died in Paris of a cerebral haemorrhage, while her boyfriend, Bernard [sic] Cantat, lead singer of France’s most popular rock band

Noir Désir

was in jail… suspected of landing the blow that plunged her into a coma from which she never emerged.

— Jon Henley in Paris
    Saturday August 2, 2003
The Guardian 

The Details:

“Trintignant… was rushed to hospital at 7.30 on Sunday morning…. 

The singer, adored in France as much for his militant and public stands on issues such as racism, globalisation and the Israeli-Palestinian dispute as for his powerful lyrics and charismatic stage presence, was admitted to hospital shortly afterwards with acute alcohol poisoning and a suspected overdose of prescription drugs.

He had allegedly waited more than five hours since the midnight struggle before sounding the alarm….”

Last Sunday’s site music, for the entry Catholic Tastes, was…  

Nous Voici Dans La Ville – A Christmas song from 15th century France (midi by John Philip Dimick).  

It will serve as a memorial song for Marie.

As for Cantat, see the 
four entries that preceded
the Catholic Tastes entry.

These deal with substance abuse and postmodern French philosophy.

The song I would recommend to memorialize the role of Cantat in this affair is American rather than French…


Pukin’ in the Parkin’ Lot.”

Religious meditation for today:

As remarked in my
obituary for Sam Phillips,
Father of Rock and Roll,

“If there’s a rock and roll heaven,
Well you know they’ve got
a hell of a band.”

Tuesday, January 21, 2003

Tuesday January 21, 2003

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 5:09 PM

Diablo Ballet

Thanks to Meghan for the following:

not going, not coming,
rooted, deep and still
not reaching out, not reaching in
just resting, at the center
a single jewel, the flawless crystal drop
in the blaze of its brilliance
the way beyond.

— Shih Te (c. 730)

It turns out that Shih Te (“Foundling”) was the sidekick of Han Shan (“Cold Mountain”).  Here are some relevant links:

Thoughts of Robert Frost (see past two days’ entries) lead to “Two Tramps in Mud Time,” which in turn leads to Jack Kerouac and Gary Snyder splitting wood in The Dharma Bums.

This in turn leads, via a search on “Kerouac” and “axe,” to the sentence

“There’s the grace of an axe handle 
 as good as an Eglevsky ballet,”

in Big Sur

Kerouac taught me when I was 16 and he is still teaching me now that I am 60.

Searching for “Eglevsky ballet” leads to this site on André Eglevsky, his work, his life, and his children.  A further search leads to his daughter Marina Eglevsky, who stages dance for the Diablo Ballet.

Born to Dance

Marina Eglevsky and
the Diablo Ballet —
a rare and gifted
pas de deux

Those who feel the above is too “arty” for them may nevertheless appreciate the movie by the same name: “Born to Dance” (1936), starring Eleanor Powell and James Stewart.

In the larger metaphorical sense, of course, Powell and Eglevsky are both part of the same dance… at the “still point” described so well by Shih Te. 

“just resting, at the center
a single jewel…”

“At the still point,
there the dance is.”
— T. S. Eliot

From Marshall’s Jewelers, Tucson —

A Diamond-Cutter Sutra:

The ideal cut is a mathematical formula for cutting diamonds to precise angles and proportions to maximize the reflection and refraction of light. In addition to these ideal proportions, the polish and symmetry of the diamond is done to the highest standards also. Only then does it qualify to receive the American Gem Society (AGS) “triple zero” rating. A “zero” rating is the most perfect rating that the AGS gives evaluating the cut, polish, and symmetry of the diamond.

When a diamond receives the “zero” rating for each of these areas, (cut, polish, and symmetry), it gets three “zeros,” hence the “triple zero” rating. Because of this attention to detail, it takes up to four times longer to cut a diamond to these standards than an “average” diamond.

You may choose to compromise on color or clarity but to ensure the most brilliant diamond you should not compromise on cut….

The “triple zero” ideal cut guarantees you a magnificent balance of brilliance, sparkle, and fire.

Postscript of 1/25/03:

See also the obituary of Irene Diamond, ballet patron, for whom the New York City Ballet’s “Diamond Project” is named.  Diamond died on January 21, 2003, the date of the above weblog entry.

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