Monday, August 4, 2014

The Omega Portal

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Version from “The Avengers” (2012) —

Version from Josefine Lyche (2009) —

Image- Josefine Lyche work (with 1986 figures by Cullinane) in a 2009 exhibition in Oslo

See also this journal on the date that the above Avengers  video was uploaded.

A Wrinkle in Space

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

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." — Madeleine L'Engle

An approach via the Omega Matrix:


See, too, Rosenhain and Göpel as The Shadow Guests .

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Paradigm Shift:

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:01 AM

Continuous Euclidean space to discrete Galois space*

Euclidean space:

Point, line, square, cube, tesseract

From a page by Bryan Clair

Counting symmetries in Euclidean space:

Galois space:

Image-- examples from Galois affine geometry

Counting symmetries of  Galois space:
IMAGE - The Diamond Theorem

The reason for these graphic symmetries in affine Galois space —

symmetries of the underlying projective Galois space:

* For related remarks, see posts of May 26-28, 2012.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Back to 1955

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:00 AM

Nick Fury takes the Tesseract

… which travels back to 1955
(see The Call Girls, Nov. 3, 2013)…

IMAGE- Cover design by Robert Flynn of 'The Armed Vision,' a 1955 Vintage paperback by Stanley Edgar Hyman

Above: A 1955 cover design by Robert Flynn.

Images from December 1955…

… and a fictional image imagined in an earlier year:

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

The Tetrahedral Model of PG(3,2)

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 10:15 PM

The page of Whitehead linked to this morning
suggests a review of Polster's tetrahedral model
of the finite projective 3-space PG(3,2) over the
two-element Galois field GF(2).

The above passage from Whitehead's 1906 book suggests
that the tetrahedral model may be older than Polster thinks.

Shown at right below is a correspondence between Whitehead's
version of the tetrahedral model and my own square  model,
based on the 4×4 array I call the Galois tesseract  (at left below).

(Click to enlarge.)

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Wrinkles in Time

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:25 PM

Rivka Galchen, in a piece mentioned here in June 2010

On Borges:  Imagining the Unwritten Book 

"Think of it this way: there is a vast unwritten book that the heart reacts to, that it races and skips in response to, that it believes in. But it’s the heart’s belief in that vast unwritten book that brought the book into existence; what appears to be exclusively a response (the heart responding to the book) is, in fact, also a conjuring (the heart inventing the book to which it so desperately wishes to respond)."

Related fictions

Galchen's "The Region of Unlikeness" (New Yorker , March 24, 2008)

Ted Chiang's "Story of Your Life." A film adaptation is to star Amy Adams.

… and non-fiction

"There is  such a thing as a 4-set." — January 31, 2012

Friday, March 14, 2014

The Search for Charles Wallace

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 2:19 PM

The search in the previous post for the source of a quotation from Poincaré yielded, as a serendipitous benefit, information on an interesting psychoanalyst named Wilfred Bion (see the Poincaré  quotation at a webpage on Bion). This in turn suggested a search for the source of the name of author Madeleine L'Engle's son Bion, who may have partly inspired L'Engle's fictional character Charles Wallace.  Cynthia Zarin wrote about Bion in The New Yorker  of April 12, 2004 that

"According to the family, he is the person for whom L’Engle’s insistence on blurring fiction and reality had the most disastrous consequences."

Also from that article, material related to the name Bion and to what this journal has called "the Crosswicks Curse"*—

"Madeleine L’Engle Camp was born in 1918 in New York City, the only child of Madeleine Hall Barnett, of Jacksonville, Florida, and Charles Wadsworth Camp, a Princeton man and First World War veteran, whose family had a big country place in New Jersey, called Crosswicks. In Jacksonville society, the Barnett family was legendary: Madeleine’s grandfather, Bion Barnett, the chairman of the board of Jacksonville’s Barnett Bank, had run off with a woman to the South of France, leaving behind a note on the mantel. Her grandmother, Caroline Hallows L’Engle, never recovered from the blow. ….

… The summer after Hugh and Madeleine were married, they bought a dilapidated farmhouse in Goshen, in northwest Connecticut. Josephine, born in 1947, was three years old when they moved permanently to the house, which they called Crosswicks. Bion was born just over a year later."

* "There is  such a thing as a tesseract."

Tuesday, March 11, 2014


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:16 AM

"… this notion of ‘depth’ is an elusive one
even for a mathematician who can recognize it…."

— G. H. Hardy,  A Mathematician's Apology

Part I:  An Inch Deep

IMAGE- Catch-phrase 'a mile wide and an inch deep' in mathematics education

Part II:  An Inch Wide

See a search for "square inch space" in this journal.

Diamond Theory version of 'The Square Inch Space' with yin-yang symbol for comparison


See also recent posts with the tag depth.

Sunday, March 2, 2014


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Raiders of the Lost  (Continued)

"Socrates: They say that the soul of man is immortal…."

From August 16, 2012

In the geometry of Plato illustrated below,
"the figure of eight [square] feet" is not ,  at this point
in the dialogue, the diamond in Jowett's picture.

An 1892 figure by Jowett illustrating Plato's Meno

A more correct version, from hermes-press.com —

Socrates: He only guesses that because the square is double, the line is double.Meno: True.


Socrates: Observe him while he recalls the steps in regular order. (To the Boy.) Tell me, boy, do you assert that a double space comes from a double line? Remember that I am not speaking of an oblong, but of a figure equal every way, and twice the size of this-that is to say of eight feet; and I want to know whether you still say that a double square comes from double line?

[Boy] Yes.

Socrates: But does not this line (AB) become doubled if we add another such line here (BJ is added)?

[Boy] Certainly.

Socrates: And four such lines [AJ, JK, KL, LA] will make a space containing eight feet?

[Boy] Yes.

Socrates: Let us draw such a figure: (adding DL, LK, and JK). Would you not say that this is the figure of eight feet?

[Boy] Yes.

Socrates: And are there not these four squares in the figure, each of which is equal to the figure of four feet? (Socrates draws in CM and CN)

[Boy] True.

Socrates: And is not that four times four?

[Boy] Certainly.

Socrates: And four times is not double?

[Boy] No, indeed.

Socrates: But how much?

[Boy] Four times as much.

Socrates: Therefore the double line, boy, has given a space, not twice, but four times as much.

[Boy] True.

Socrates: Four times four are sixteen— are they not?

[Boy] Yes.

As noted in the 2012 post, the diagram of greater interest is
Jowett's incorrect  version rather than the more correct version
shown above. This is because the 1892 version inadvertently
illustrates a tesseract:

A 4×4 square version, by Coxeter in 1950, of  a tesseract

This square version we may call the Galois  tesseract.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Crosswicks Curse

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 7:00 PM


"There is  such a thing as a tesseract."

— Saying from Crosswicks

IMAGE- From Dmitri Tymoczko's 'Geometry of Music,' Chopin and a tesseract

See also March 5, 2011.

Adapted from the above passage —

"So did L'Engle understand four-dimensional geometry?"

No and Yes.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Rotatable Hypercube

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 6:00 AM

The archived Java rotatable hypercube of
Harry J. Smith is no longer working.
For an excellent JavaScript  replacement,
see Pete Michaud's

This JavaScript  version can easily be saved.

Friday, January 17, 2014

The 4×4 Relativity Problem

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , — m759 @ 11:00 PM

The sixteen-dot square array in yesterday’s noon post suggests
the following remarks.

“This is the relativity problem:  to fix objectively a class of
equivalent coordinatizations and to ascertain the group of
transformations S mediating between them.”

— Hermann Weyl, The Classical Groups ,
Princeton University Press, 1946, p. 16

The Galois tesseract  appeared in an early form in the journal
Computer Graphics and Art , Vol. 2, No. 1, February 1977—

IMAGE- Hypercube and 4x4 matrix from the 1976 'Diamond Theory' preprint, as excerpted in 'Computer Graphics and Art'

The 1977 matrix Q is echoed in the following from 2002—

IMAGE- Dolgachev and Keum, coordinatization of the 4x4 array in 'Birational Automorphisms of Quartic Hessian Surfaces,' AMS Transactions, 2002

A different representation of Cullinane’s 1977 square model of the
16-point affine geometry over the two-element Galois field GF(2)
is supplied by Conway and Sloane in Sphere Packings, Lattices and Groups   
(first published in 1988) :

IMAGE- The Galois tesseract as a four-dimensional vector space, from a diagram by Conway and Sloane in 'Sphere Packings, Lattices, and Groups'

Here a, b, c, d   are basis vectors in the vector 4-space over GF(2).
(For a 1979 version of this vector space, see AMS Abstract 79T-A37.)

See also a 2011 publication of the Mathematical Association of America —

From 'Beautiful Mathematics,' by Martin Erickson, an excerpt on the Cullinane diamond theorem (with source not mentioned)

Friday, December 20, 2013

For Emil Artin

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:00 PM

(On His Dies Natalis )

An Exceptional Isomorphism Between Geometric and
Combinatorial Steiner Triple Systems Underlies 
the Octads of the M24 Steiner System S(5, 8, 24).

This is asserted in an excerpt from… 

"The smallest non-rank 3 strongly regular graphs
​which satisfy the 4-vertex condition"
by Mikhail Klin, Mariusz Meszka, Sven Reichard, and Alex Rosa,

(Click for clearer image)

Note that Theorem 46 of Klin et al.  describes the role
of the Galois tesseract  in the Miracle Octad Generator
of R. T. Curtis (original 1976 version). The tesseract
(a 4×4 array) supplies the geometric  part of the above
exceptional geometric-combinatorial isomorphism.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

A Hand for the Band

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

"How about another hand for the band?
They work real hard for it.
The Cherokee Cowboys, ladies and gentlemen."

— Ray Price, video, "Danny Boy Mid 80's Live"

Other deathly hallows suggested by today's NY Times

Click the above image for posts from December 14.

That image mentions a death on August 5, 2005, in
"entertainment Mecca" Branson, Missouri.

Another note from August 5, 2005, reposted here
on Monday

IMAGE- Aug. 5, 2005- Galois tesseract, Shakespeherian Rag, Sir Alec Guinness

Happy birthday, Keith Richards.

Monday, December 16, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

IMAGE- Four quadrants of a Galois tesseract, and a figure from 'Lawrence of Arabia'

Happy Beethoven's Birthday.

Related material:  Abel 2005 and, more generally, Abel.

See also Visible Mathematics.

Sunday, December 15, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Odin's Jewel

Jim Holt, the author of remarks in yesterday's
Saturday evening post

"It turns out that the Kyoto school of Buddhism
makes Heidegger seem like Rush Limbaugh—
it’s so rarified, I’ve never been able to
understand it at all. I’ve been knocking my head
against it for years."

Vanity Fair Daily , July 16, 2012

Backstory Odin + Jewel in this journal.

See also Odin on the Kyoto school —

For another version of Odin's jewel, see Log24
on the date— July 16, 2012— that Holt's Vanity Fair
remarks were published. Scroll to the bottom of the
"Mapping Problem continued" post for an instance of
the Galois tesseract —

IMAGE- The Galois tesseract as a four-dimensional vector space, from a diagram by Conway and Sloane in 'Sphere Packings, Lattices, and Groups'

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Pink Champagne on Ice

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:00 AM

The title refers to a post of April 26, 2009.

U. of California edition of Wittgenstein's 'Zettel'-- pink cover, white tesseract in background

Monday, December 9, 2013

Being There

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:16 PM

Or: The Naked Blackboard Jungle

"…it would be quite a long walk
for him if he had to walk straight across."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070831-Ant1.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Swiftly Mrs. Who brought her hands… together.

"Now, you see," Mrs. Whatsit said,
"he would be  there, without that long trip.
That is how we travel."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070831-Ant2.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

– A Wrinkle in Time 
Chapter 5, "The Tesseract"

Related material: Machete Math and

Starring the late Eleanor Parker as Swiftly Mrs. Who.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Geometric Incarnation

The  Kummer 166  configuration  is the configuration of sixteen
6-sets within a 4×4 square array of points in which each 6-set
is determined by one of the 16 points of the array and
consists of the 3 other points in that point's row and the
3 other points in that point's column.

See Configurations and Squares.

The Wikipedia article Kummer surface  uses a rather poetic
phrase* to describe the relationship of the 166 to a number
of other mathematical concepts — "geometric incarnation."

Geometric Incarnation in the Galois Tesseract

Related material from finitegeometry.org —

IMAGE- 4x4 Geometry: Rosenhain and Göpel Tetrads and the Kummer Configuration

* Apparently from David Lehavi on March 18, 2007, at Citizendium .

Monday, August 12, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

The Galois tesseract  appeared in an early form in the journal
Computer Graphics and Art , Vol. 2, No. 1, February 1977—

IMAGE- Hypercube and 4x4 matrix from the 1976 'Diamond Theory' preprint, as excerpted in 'Computer Graphics and Art'

The Galois tesseract is the basis for a representation of the smallest 
projective 3-space, PG(3,2), that differs from the representation at
Wolfram Demonstrations Project. For the latter, see yesterday's post.

The tesseract representation underlies the diamond theorem, illustrated
below in its earliest form, also from the above February 1977 article—

IMAGE- Steven H. Cullinane, diamond theorem, from 'Diamond Theory,' Computer Graphics and Art, Vol. 2 No. 1, Feb. 1977, pp. 5-7

As noted in a more recent version, the group described by
the diamond theorem is also the group of the 35 square
patterns within the 1976 Miracle Octad Generator  (MOG) of
R. T. Curtis.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Space Itself

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 10:18 AM

"How do you get young people excited
about space? How do you get them interested
not just in watching movies about space,
or in playing video games set in space
but in space itself?"

Megan Garber in The AtlanticAug. 16, 2012

One approach:

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract" and
Diamond Theory in 1937.

See, too, Baez in this journal.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Vril Chick

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 4:30 AM

Profile picture of "Jo Lyxe" (Josefine Lyche) at Vimeo

Profile picture for "Jo Lyxe" (Josefine Lyche) at Vimeo

Compare to an image of Vril muse Maria Orsitsch.

From the catalog of a current art exhibition
(25 May – 31 August, 2013) in Norway,

Josefine Lyche
Born in 1973 in Bergen, Norway.
Lives and works in Oslo and Berlin.

Keywords (to help place my artwork in the
proper context): Aliens, affine geometry, affine
planes, affine spaces, automorphisms, binary
codes, block designs, classical groups, codes,
coding theory, collineations, combinatorial,
combinatorics, conjugacy classes, the Conwell
correspondence, correlations, Cullinane,
R. T. Curtis, design theory, the diamond theorem,
diamond theory, duads, duality, error correcting
codes, esoteric, exceptional groups,
extraterrestrials, finite fields, finite geometry, finite
groups, finite rings, Galois fields, generalized
quadrangles, generators, geometry, GF(2),
GF(4), the (24,12) Golay code, group actions,
group theory, Hadamard matrices, hypercube,
hyperplanes, hyperspace, incidence structures,
invariance, Karnaugh maps, Kirkman’s schoolgirls
problem, Latin squares, Leech lattice, linear
groups, linear spaces, linear transformations,
Magick, Mathieu groups, matrix theory, Meno,
Miracle Octad Generator, MOG, multiply transitive
groups, occultism, octahedron, the octahedral
group, Orsic, orthogonal arrays, outer automorphisms,
parallelisms, partial geometries,
permutation groups, PG(3,2), Plato, Platonic
solids, polarities, Polya-Burnside theorem, projective
geometry, projective planes, projective
spaces, projectivities, Pythagoras, reincarnation,
Reed-Muller codes, the relativity problem,
reverse engineering, sacred geometry, Singer
cycle, skew lines, Socrates, sporadic simple
groups, Steiner systems, Sylvester, symmetric,
symmetry, symplectic, synthemes, synthematic,
Theosophical Society tesseract, Tessla, transvections,
Venn diagrams, Vril society, Walsh
functions, Witt designs.

(See also the original catalog page.)

Clearly most of this (the non-highlighted parts) was taken
from my webpage Diamond Theory. I suppose I should be
flattered, but I am not thrilled to be associated with the
(apparently fictional) Vril Society.

For some background, see (for instance) 
Conspiracy Theories and Secret Societies for Dummies .

Friday, July 5, 2013

Mathematics and Narrative (continued)

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , — m759 @ 6:01 PM

Short Story — (Click image for some details.)

IMAGE- Andries Brouwer and the Galois Tesseract

Parts of a longer story —

The Galois Tesseract and Priority.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Random Dudes

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:00 PM

Here is the link to an MIT Scratch project from the above comment.

See also a comment by a Random Norwegian Dude:

For related art, see 
"4D AMBASSADOR (HYPERCUBE)" for Steven H. Cullinane
by the Norwegian artist Josefine Lyche.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Cover Acts

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 AM

The Daily Princetonian  today:

IMAGE- 'How Jay White, a Neil Diamond cover act, duped Princeton'

A different cover act, discussed here  Saturday:

IMAGE- The diamond theorem affine group of order 322,560, published without acknowledgment of its source by the Mathematical Association of America in 2011

See also, in this journal, the Galois tesseract and the Crosswicks Curse.

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." — Crosswicks saying

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , , — m759 @ 12:00 PM

The hypercube  model of the 4-space over the 2-element Galois field GF(2):

IMAGE- A hyperspace model of the 4D vector space over GF(2)

The phrase Galois tesseract  may be used to denote a different model
of the above 4-space: the 4×4 square.

MacWilliams and Sloane discussed the Miracle Octad Generator
(MOG) of R. T. Curtis further on in their book (see below), but did not
seem to realize in 1977 that the 4×4 structures within the MOG are
based on the Galois-tesseract model of the 4-space over GF(2).

IMAGE- Octads within the Curtis MOG, which uses a 4x4-array model of the 4D vector space over GF(2)

The thirty-five 4×4 structures within the MOG:

IMAGE- The 35 square patterns within the Curtis MOG

Curtis himself first described these 35 square MOG patterns
combinatorially, (as his title indicated) rather than
algebraically or geometrically:

IMAGE- R. T. Curtis's combinatorial construction of 4x4 patterns within the Miracle Octad Generator

A later book co-authored by Sloane, first published in 1988,
did  recognize the 4×4 MOG patterns as based on the 4×4
Galois-tesseract model.

Between the 1977 and 1988 Sloane books came the diamond theorem.

Update of May 29, 2013:

The Galois tesseract appeared in an early form in the journal
Computer Graphics and Art , Vol. 2, No. 1, February 1977
(the year the above MacWilliams-Sloane book was first published):

IMAGE- Hypercube and 4x4 matrix from the 1976 'Diamond Theory' preprint, as excerpted in 'Computer Graphics and Art'

Sunday, May 19, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Best vs. Bester

The previous post ended with a reference mentioning Rosenhain.

For a recent application of Rosenhain's work, see
Desargues via Rosenhain (April 1, 2013).

From the next day, April 2, 2013:

"The proof of Desargues' theorem of projective geometry
comes as close as a proof can to the Zen ideal.
It can be summarized in two words: 'I see!' "

– Gian-Carlo Rota in Indiscrete Thoughts (1997)

Also in that book, originally from a review in Advances in Mathematics ,
Vol. 84, Number 1, Nov. 1990, p. 136:
IMAGE- Rota's review of 'Sphere Packings, Lattices and Groups'-- in a word, 'best'

See, too, in the Conway-Sloane book, the Galois tesseract  
and, in this journal, Geometry for Jews and The Deceivers , by Bester.

Priority Claim

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , , — m759 @ 9:00 AM

From an arXiv preprint submitted July 18, 2011,
and last revised on March 11, 2013 (version 4):

"By our construction, this vector space is the dual
of our hypercube F24 built on I \ O9. The vector space
structure of the latter, to our knowledge, is first
mentioned by Curtis
in [Cur89]. Hence altogether
our proposition 2.3.4 gives a novel geometric
meaning in terms of Kummer geometry to the known
vector space structure on I \ O9."

[Cur89] reference:
 R. T. Curtis, "Further elementary techniques using
the miracle octad generator," Proc. Edinburgh
Math. Soc. 
32 (1989), 345-353 (received on
July 20, 1987).

— Anne Taormina and Katrin Wendland,
    "The overarching finite symmetry group of Kummer
      surfaces in the Mathieu group 24 ,"
     arXiv.org > hep-th > arXiv:1107.3834

"First mentioned by Curtis…."

No. I claim that to the best of my knowledge, the 
vector space structure was first mentioned by me,
Steven H. Cullinane, in an AMS abstract submitted
in October 1978, some nine years before the
Curtis article.

Update of the above paragraph on July 6, 2013—

No. The vector space structure was described by
(for instance) Peter J. Cameron in a 1976
Cambridge University Press book —
Parallelisms of Complete Designs .
See the proof of Theorem 3A.13 on pages 59 and 60.

The vector space structure as it occurs in a 4×4 array
of the sort that appears in the Curtis Miracle Octad
Generator may first have been pointed out by me,
Steven H. Cullinane,
 in an AMS abstract submitted in
October 1978, some nine years before the Curtis article.

See Notes on Finite Geometry for some background.

See in particular The Galois Tesseract.

For the relationship of the 1978 abstract to Kummer
geometry, see Rosenhain and Göpel Tetrads in PG(3,2).

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Mathematics and Narrative (continued)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:00 PM

"Why history?
Well, the essence of history  is story ,
and a good story is an end in itself."

— Barry Mazur, "History of Mathematics  as a tool,"
    February 17, 2013

This  journal on February 17, 2013:

FROM Christoph Waltz

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 12:12 AM 

"Currently in post-production": The Zero Theorem.

For Christoph Waltz

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 12:00 AM 

Raiders of the Lost Tesseract  continues…

SOCRATES: Is he not better off in knowing his ignorance?
MENO: I think that he is.
SOCRATES: If we have made him doubt, and given him the 'torpedo's shock,' have we done him any harm?
MENO: I think not.

Torpedo… LOS!

IMAGE- Theodore Sturgeon, 1972 reviews of Del Rey's 'Pstalemate' and Le Guin's 'Lathe of Heaven'   

See also today's previous post.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

The Crosswicks Curse

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 PM


"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." —A novel from Crosswicks

Related material from a 1905 graduate of Princeton,
"The 3-Space PG(3,2) and Its Group," is now available
at Internet Archive (1 download thus far).

The 3-space paper is relevant because of the
connection of the group it describes to the
"super, overarching" group of the tesseract.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Princeton’s Christopher Robin

The title is that of a talk (see video) given by
George Dyson at a Princeton land preservation trust,
reportedly on March 21, 2013.  The talk's subtitle was
"Oswald Veblen and the Six-hundred-acre Woods."


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Geometry of Göpel Tetrads (continued)

m759 @ 7:00 PM

An update to Rosenhain and Göpel Tetrads in PG(3,2)
supplies some background from
Notes on Groups and Geometry, 1978-1986,
and from a 2002 AMS Transactions  paper.

IMAGE- Göpel tetrads in an inscape, April 1986

Related material for those who prefer narrative
to mathematics:

Log24 on June 6, 2006:


The Omen:

Now we are 


Related material for those who prefer mathematics
to narrative:

What the Omen narrative above and the mathematics of Veblen
have in common is the number 6. Veblen, who came to
Princeton in 1905 and later helped establish the Institute,
wrote extensively on projective geometry.  As the British
geometer H. F. Baker pointed out,  6 is a rather important number
in that discipline.  For the connection of 6 to the Göpel tetrads
figure above from March 21, see a note from May 1986.

See also last night's Veblen and Young in Light of Galois.

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." — Madeleine L'Engle

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Rota in a Nutshell

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:00 PM

"The proof of Desargues' theorem of projective geometry
comes as close as a proof can to the Zen ideal.
It can be summarized in two words: 'I see!' "

— Gian-Carlo Rota in Indiscrete Thoughts (1997)

Also in that book, originally from a review in Advances in Mathematics,
Vol. 84, Number 1, Nov. 1990, p. 136:

IMAGE- Rota's review of 'Sphere Packings, Lattices and Groups'-- in a word, 'best'

Related material:

Pascal and the Galois nocciolo ,
Conway and the Galois tesseract,
Gardner and Galois.

See also Rota and Psychoshop.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Back to the Present

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 4:24 PM

The previous post discussed some tesseract
related mathematics from 1905.

Returning to the present, here is some arXiv activity
in the same area from March 11, 12, and 13, 2013.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

The Crosswicks Curse

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:00 PM


From the prologue to the new Joyce Carol Oates
novel Accursed

"This journey I undertake with such anticipation
is not one of geographical space but one of Time—
for it is the year 1905 that is my destination.

1905!—the very year of the Curse."

Today's previous post supplied a fanciful link
between the Crosswicks Curse of Oates and
the Crosswicks tesseract  of Madeleine L'Engle.

The Crosswicks Curse according to L'Engle
in her classic 1962 novel A Wrinkle in Time —

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract."

A tesseract is a 4-dimensional hypercube that
(as pointed out by Coxeter in 1950) may also 
be viewed as a 4×4 array (with opposite edges

Meanwhile, back in 1905

For more details, see how the Rosenhain and Göpel tetrads occur naturally
in the diamond theorem model of the 35 lines of the 15-point projective
Galois space PG(3,2).

See also Conwell in this journal and George Macfeely Conwell in the
honors list of the Princeton Class of 1905.


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 7:59 AM

For readers of The Daily Princetonian :

IMAGE- 4x4 array in 'Ancient Jewels' puzzle

(From a site advertised in the
Princetonian  on March 11, 2013)

For readers of The Harvard Crimson :

IMAGE- Harvard Crimson ad, Easter Sunday, 2008: 'Finite projective geometry as a graphic grammar of abstract design'

For some background, see Crimson Easter Egg and the Diamond 16 Puzzle.

For some (very loosely) related narrative, see Crosswicks in this journal
and the Crosswicks Curse  in a new novel by Joyce Carol Oates.

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract."
— Crosswicks author Madeleine L'Engle

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Proof Symbol

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 8:28 PM

Today's previous post recalled a post
from ten years before yesterday's  date.

The subject of that post was the
Galois tesseract.

Here is a post from ten years before
today's  date

The subject of that  post is the Halmos

"The symbol    is used throughout the entire book
in place of such phrases as 'Q.E.D.' or 'This
completes the proof of the theorem' to signal
the end of a proof."

Measure Theory  (1950)

For exact proportions, click on the tombstone.

For some classic mathematics related
to the proportions, see September 2003.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

For an Entertainer

Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:06 PM

"Forget about your rainbow schemes,
Spin a little web of dreams."

Song lyric

Related material: 

Big Time and The Lost Tesseract.

For Christoph Waltz

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 AM

Raiders of the Lost Tesseract  continues…

SOCRATES: Is he not better off in knowing his ignorance?
MENO: I think that he is.
SOCRATES: If we have made him doubt, and given him the 'torpedo's shock,' have we done him any harm?
MENO: I think not.

Torpedo… LOS!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 9:29 PM

Story, Structure, and the Galois Tesseract

Recent Log24 posts have referred to the 
"Penrose diamond" and Minkowski space.

The Penrose diamond has nothing whatever
to do with my 1976 monograph "Diamond Theory,"
except for the diamond shape and the connection
of the Penrose diamond to the Klein quadric—

IMAGE- The Penrose diamond and the Klein quadric

The Klein quadric occurs in the five-dimensional projective space
over a field. If the field is the two-element Galois field GF(2), the
quadric helps explain certain remarkable symmetry properties 
of the R. T. Curtis Miracle Octad Generator  (MOG), hence of
the large Mathieu group M24. These properties are also 
relevant to the 1976 "Diamond Theory" monograph.

For some background on the quadric, see (for instance)

IMAGE- Stroppel on the Klein quadric, 2008

See also The Klein Correspondence,
Penrose Space-Time, and a Finite Model

Related material:

"… one might crudely distinguish between philosophical
and mathematical motivation. In the first case one tries
to convince with a telling conceptual story; in the second
one relies more on the elegance of some emergent
mathematical structure. If there is a tradition in logic
it favours the former, but I have a sneaking affection for
the latter. Of course the distinction is not so clear cut.
Elegant mathematics will of itself tell a tale, and one with
the merit of simplicity. This may carry philosophical
weight. But that cannot be guaranteed: in the end one
cannot escape the need to form a judgement of significance."

– J. M. E. Hyland. "Proof Theory in the Abstract." (pdf)
Annals of Pure and Applied Logic 114, 2002, 43-78.

Those who prefer story to structure may consult 

  1. today's previous post on the Penrose diamond
  2. the remarks of Scott Aaronson on August 17, 2012
  3. the remarks in this journal on that same date
  4. the geometry of the 4×4 array in the context of M24.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 9:01 PM

The title was suggested by an ad for a film that opens
at 10 PM EST today: "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters."

Related material: Grimm Day 2012, as well as
Amy Adams in Raiders of the Lost Tesseract
and in a Film School Rejects page today.

See also some Norwegian art in
Trish Mayo's Photostream today and in
Omega Point (Log24, Oct. 15, 2012)—

Monday, October 15, 2012

Omega Point

m759 @ 2:00 PM 

For Sergeant-Major America—

IMAGE- Art exhibition with 'Omega Point' and geometric figures related to tesseract, along with movie 'Captain America' figure

The image is from posts of Feb. 20, 2011,
and Jan. 27, 2012.

This instance of the omega point is for 
a sergeant major who died at 92 on Wednesday,
October 10, 2012.

See also posts on that date in this journal—

Midnight,  Ambiguation,  Subtitle for Odin's Day,
 and Melancholia, Depression, Ambiguity.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Bad Idea

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 PM

For the 2013 Joint Mathematics Meetings in San Diego,
which start today, a cartoon by Andrew Spann—

(Click for larger image.) 

Related remarks:

This journal on the Feast of Epiphany, 2013

"The Tesseract is where it belongs: out of our reach."

The Avengers'  Nick Fury, played by Samuel L. Jackson

Today's New York Times —

"You never know what could happen.
If you have Sam, you’re going to be cool."

— The late David R. Ellis, film director

If anyone in San Diego cares about the relationship
of Spann's plane to Fury's Tesseract, he or she may
consult Finite Geometry of the Square and Cube.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

True Fury

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:29 AM

For the Feast of Epiphany:

A trip back to December 1955

IMAGE- Cowboy magi and star on cover of TRUE, Dec. 1955 IMAGE- Gloria Pall on back cover of FURY, Dec. 1955

Meditations for Three Kings Day (Feast of Epiphany)—

"Show me all  the blueprints." — Leonardo DiCaprio as Howard Hughes

"The Tesseract is where it belongs: out of our reach." — Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury

"Here was finality indeed, and cleavage!" — Malcolm Lowry's Under the Volcano  (1947)

Click images for some background.

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Vector Addition in a Finite Field

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 10:18 AM

The finite (i.e., Galois) field GF(16),
according to J. J. Seidel in 1974—

The same field according to Steven H. Cullinane in 1986,
in its guise as the affine 4-space over GF(2)—

The same field, again disguised as an affine 4-space,
according to John H. Conway and N.J.A. Sloane in
Sphere Packings, Lattices, and Groups , first published in 1988—

The above figure by Conway and Sloane summarizes, using
a 4×4 array, the additive vector-space structure of the finite
field GF(16).

This structure embodies what in Euclidean space is called
the parallelogram rule for vector addition—

(Thanks to June Lester for the 3D (uvw) part of the above figure.)

For the transition from this colored Euclidean hypercube
(used above to illustrate the parallelogram rule) to the
4×4 Galois space (illustrated by Cullinane in 1979 and
Conway and Sloane in 1988— or later… I do not have
their book’s first edition), see Diamond Theory in 1937,
Vertex Adjacency in a Tesseract and in a 4×4 Array,
Spaces as Hypercubes, and The Galois Tesseract.

For some related narrative, see tesseract  in this journal.

(This post has been added to finitegeometry.org.)

Update of August 9, 2013—

Coordinates for hypercube vertices derived from the
parallelogram rule in four dimensions were better
illustrated by Jürgen Köller in a web page archived in 2002.

Update of August 13, 2013—

The four basis vectors in the 2002 Köller hypercube figure
are also visible at the bottom of the hypercube figure on
page 7 of “Diamond Theory,” excerpts from a 1976 preprint
in Computer Graphics and Art , Vol. 2, No. 1, February 1977.
A predecessor:  Coxeter’s 1950 hypercube figure from
Self-Dual Configurations and Regular Graphs.”

Saturday, November 3, 2012


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:01 AM

A New Yorker  weblog post from yesterday, All Souls' Day

"As the mathematician Terence Tao has written,
math study has three stages:
the 'pre-rigorous,' in which basic rules are learned,
the theoretical 'rigorous' stage, and, last and most intriguing,
'the post-rigorous,' in which intuition suddenly starts to play a part."

Related material— 

Rigor  in a Log24 post of Sunday evening, May 25, 2008: "Hall of Mirrors."

Note in that post the tesseract  viewed as the lattice of
the 16 subsets of a 4-element set.

Some further material related to tesseracts and time, in three stages
(roughly corresponding to Tao's, but not in chronological order): 

  1. Bakhtin
  2. Spaces as Hypercubes, and 
  3. Pindar.

See also a recent Log24 post on remarks from Four Quartets .

(The vertices of a tesseract form, in various natural ways, four quartets.)

Friday, November 2, 2012

For All Souls’ Day

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:48 AM

From this journal yesterday (All Saints' Day)—

"But, I asked, is there a difference
between fiction and nonfiction?
'Not much,' she said, shrugging."

New Yorker  profile of tesseract
author Madeleine L'Engle

For a discussion of this issue in greater depth—

"Truth and fact are not the same thing."

— see a 1998 award acceptance speech by L'Engle.

See also a Log24 post of March 1st, 2008, on the soul.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Theories of Truth

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 7:20 PM

A review of two theories of truth described
by a clergyman, Richard J. Trudeau, in
The Non-Euclidean Revolution

The Story Theory of Truth:

"But, I asked, is there a difference
between fiction and nonfiction?
'Not much,' she said, shrugging."

New Yorker  profile of tesseract
     author Madeleine L'Engle

The Diamond Theory of Truth:

(Click image for some background.)

Spaces as Hypercubes

See also the links on a webpage at finitegeometry.org.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The Malfunctioning TARDIS

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:01 AM

(Continued from previous TARDIS posts)

Summary: A review of some  posts from last August is suggested by the death,
reportedly during the dark hours early on October 30, of artist Lebbeus Woods.

An (initially unauthorized) appearance of his work in the 1995 film
Twelve Monkeys 

 … suggests a review of three posts from last August.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Defining Form

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:01 AM 

Continued from July 29 in memory of filmmaker Chris Marker,
who reportedly* died on that date at 91 at his home in Paris.

See Slides and Chantingand Where Madness Lies.

See also Sherrill Grace on Malcolm Lowry.

Washington PostOther sources say Marker died on July 30.

 These notably occur in Marker's masterpiece
     La Jetée  (review with spoilers).


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Triple Feature

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 11:11 PM

IMAGE- Triple Feature: 'Twelve Monkeys,' Reagan National Airport on July 31, 2012, and 'Die Hard 2'

For related material, see this morning's post Defining Form.


Sunday, August 12, 2012

Doctor Who

Filed under: Uncategorized — m759 @ 2:00 PM

On Robert A. Heinlein's novel Glory Road

"Glory Road  (1963) included the foldbox , a hyperdimensional packing case that was bigger inside than outside. It is unclear if Glory Road  was influenced by the debut of the science fiction television series Doctor Who  on the BBC that same year. In Doctor Who , the main character pilots a time machine called a TARDIS, which is built with technology which makes it 'dimensionally transcendental,' that is, bigger inside than out."

— Todd, Tesseract article at exampleproblems.com

From the same exampleproblems.com article—

"The connection pattern of the tesseract's vertices is the same as that of a 4×4 square array drawn on a torus; each cell (representing a vertex of the tesseract) is adjacent to exactly four other cells. See geometry of the 4×4 square."

For further details, see today's new page on vertex adjacency at finitegeometry.org.


"It was a dark and stormy night."— A Wrinkle in Time

Monday, October 15, 2012

Omega Point

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 PM

For Sergeant-Major America—

IMAGE- Art exhibition with 'Omega Point' and geometric figures related to tesseract, along with movie 'Captain America' figure

The image is from posts of Feb. 20, 2011, and Jan. 27, 2012.

This instance of the omega point is for a sergeant major
who died at 92 on Wednesday, October 10, 2012.

See also posts on that date in this journal—

Midnight,  Ambiguation,  Subtitle for Odin's Day,  and
Melancholia, Depression, Ambiguity.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Melancholia, Depression, Ambiguity

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:00 PM

Occurrences of the phrase "magic square" in Lowe-Porter's translation of the Thomas Mann novel Doctor Faustus

"On the wall above the  piano was an arithmetical diagram fastened with drawing-pins, something he had found in a second-hand shop: a so-called magic square, such as appears also in Dürer's Melancolia , along with the hour-glass, the circle, the scale, the polyhedron, and other symbols. Here as there, the figure was divided into sixteen Arabic-numbered fields, in such a way that number one was in the right-hand lower corner, sixteen in the upper left; and the magic, or the oddity, simply consisted in the fact that the sum of these numerals, however you added them, straight down, crosswise, or diagonally, always came to thirty-four. What the principle was upon which this magic uniformity rested I never made out, but by virtue of the prominent place Adrian had given it over the piano, it always attracted the eye, and I believe I never visited his room without giving a quick glance, slanting up or straight down and testing once more the invariable, incredible result."


"Adrian kept without changing during the whole four and a half years he spent in Leipzig his two-room quarters in Peterstrasse near the Collegium Beatae Virginis, where he had again pinned the magic square above his cottage piano."


" 'The decisive factor is that every note, without exception, has significance and function according to its place in the basic series or its derivatives. That would guarantee what I call the indifference to harmony and melody.' 

'A magic square,' I said. 'But do you hope to have people hear all that?' "


" 'Extraordinarily Dürerish. You love it. First "how will I shiver after the sun"; and then the houre-glasse of the Melancolia .  Is the magic square coming too?' "


"Here I will remind the reader of a conversation I had with Adrian on a long-ago day, the day of his sister's wedding at Buchel, as we walked round the Cow Trough. He developed for me— under pressure of a headache— his idea of the 'strict style,' derived from the way in which, as in the lied 'O lieb Madel, wie schlecht bist du ' melody and harmony are determined by the permutation of a fundamental five-note motif, the symbolic letters h, e, a, e, e-flat. He showed me the 'magic square' of a style of technique which yet developed the extreme of variety out of identical material and in which there is no longer anything unthematic, anything that could not prove itself to be a variation of an ever constant element. This style, this technique, he said, admitted no note, not one, which did not fulfil its thematic function in the whole structure— there was no longer any free note."

Review of related material— 

Last night's midnight post (disambiguation), the followup 1 AM post (ambiguation), today's noon post (ambiguity), and Dürer in this journal.

The tesseracts of the noon post are related to the Dürer magic square by a well-known adjacency property.

"… the once stable 'father's depression' has been transmuted into a shifting reality that shimmered in a multiplicity of facets."

Haim Omer, Tel-Aviv University, on Milanese ambiguation  therapy,
     p. 321 in "Three Styles of Constructive Therapy,"
     Constructive Therapies, Vol. 2 , pp. 319-333, 
     ed. by Michael F. Hoyt (Guilford Press paperback, 1998)

Subtitle for Odin’s Day

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

The subtitle of Jack Kerouac's novel Doctor Sax
is Faust Part Three.

Related material—

Types of Ambiguity— Galois Meets Doctor Faustus
(this journal, December 14, 2010).

See also tesseracts of Odin and of Galois.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Faust at Harvard (For Bohr’s Birthday)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:00 PM

Today's Harvard Crimson

Students Discuss Mental Health

In an effort to break the silence on an often-stigmatized topic,
members of the Harvard community gathered to share
experiences with mental illness through spoken word,
interpretive dance, and candid conversations at Friday night’s
second-annual “Words on the Mind” open mic night.

Related material from this  journal on Friday

The Hallowed Crucible

Some related symbolism (headings added Oct. 7)—



Applied Mathematics
(See Nov. 19, 2011.)

The Mind:


Pure Mathematics
(See Tesseract.)

Today's (Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012)  Google Doodle for Bohr's birthday—

  (See also Faust in Copenhagen in this journal)—

» more

Friday, October 5, 2012

The Hallowed Crucible

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:19 AM


The Hallowed Crucible

Some related symbolism—


Applied Mathematics
(See Nov. 19, 2011.)


Pure Mathematics
(See Tesseract.)

See also Stallion Gate  (a novel) in this journal.

For some related nonfiction, see interviews with
Los Alamos physicist Robert F. Christy, who died
at 96 on Wednesday, October 3, 2012.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Kids Grow Up

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 6:29 PM

From an obituary for Helen Nicoll, author
of a popular series of British children's books—

"They feature Meg, a witch whose spells
always seem to go wrong, her cat Mog,
and their friend Owl." 

For some (very loosely) related concepts that
have been referred to in this journal, see…

Meg,  Mog,  and Owl.

See, too, "Kids grow up" (Feb. 13, 2012).

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 12:00 PM
From French cinema—


"a 'non-existent myth' of a battle between
goddesses of the sun and the moon
for a mysterious blue diamond
that has the power to make
mortals immortal and vice versa"

"Moon River, wider than a mile…"

The most damaging and obstructive
cluster of ideas you face as a writer
are nearly all related to the idea of “flow.”

Like “genius.”

And “sincerity.”

And “inspiration.”

Distrust these words.

They stand for cherished myths,
but myths nonetheless.

— Verlyn Klinkenborg, 
"Several Short Sentences About Writing"       

"All she had to do was kick off and flow."

The Gameplayers of Zan

"I'se so silly to be flowing but I no canna stay."

Finnegans Wake

Thursday, September 20, 2012


Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 9:29 AM

      Part of a New York Times  banner ad last night—

IMAGE- 'Fashion Week: Immerse Yourself'

     (Fashion week dates 2012 — 
     New York Sept. 6-13, London Sept. 14-18,
     Milan Sept. 19-25, Paris Sept. 25-Oct. 3.)

     Some related prose suggested by a link in
     last night's Log24 post

The theory, he had explained, was that the persona
was a four-dimensional figure, a tessaract in space,
the elementals Fire, Earth, Air, and Water permutating
and pervolving upon themselves, making a cruciform
(in three-space projection) figure of equal lines and
ninety degree angles.

The Gameplayers of Zan , a novel by M. A. Foster

IMAGE- Immersion in a fictional vision of resurrection within a tesseract

      See also, if you can find a copy, Jeff Riggenbach's 
      "Science Fiction as Will and Idea," Riverside Quarterly 
       Vol. 5, No. 3 (whole number 19, August 1972, ed. by
       Leland Sapiro et al.), 168-177.

      Some background—
      Tuesday's Simple Skill and 4D Ambassador,
      as well as Now What? from May 23, 2012.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Art Wars (continued)

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 8:00 PM

Today's previous post, "For Odin's Day," discussed 
a mathematical object, the tesseract, from a strictly
narrative point of view.

In honor of George Balanchine, Odin might yield the
floor this evening to Apollo.

From a piece in today's online New York Times  titled
"How a God Finds Art (the Abridged Version)"—

"… the newness at the heart of this story,
in which art is happening for the first time…."

Some related art

IMAGE- Figure from Plato's Meno in version by Benjamin Jowett, Master of Balliol College, Oxford

and, more recently

This more recent figure is from Ian Stewart's 1996 revision 
of a 1941 classic, What Is Mathematics? , by Richard Courant
and Herbert Robbins.

Apollo might discuss with Socrates how the confused slave boy
of Plato's Meno  would react to Stewart's remark that

"The number of copies required to double an
 object's size depends on its dimension."

Apollo might also note an application of Socrates' Meno  diagram
to the tesseract of this afternoon's Odin post


For Odin’s Day*

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

(Mathematics and Narrative, continued)

"My dad has a great expression,"
Steve Sabol told USA TODAY Sports
last year. "He always says, 'Tell me
a fact, and I'll learn. Tell me the truth,
and I believe. But tell me a story,
and it will live in my heart forever.' "


Sabol died yesterday.


An art gallery in Oslo is exhibiting a tesseract.


The Jewel of Odin's Treasure Room

(Click to enlarge.)

* I.e., Wednesday. For some apt Nordic spirit,
   see Odin's Day 2012 Trailer.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Master Class

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 4:00 AM

Wikipedia (links added)—

"Hubbard coined Dianetics  from the Greek stems dia ,
meaning through, and nous , meaning mind."

Log24 on August 30

"The snow kept falling on the world,
big white flakes like white gloves."

— Frederick Seidel, "House Master,"
poem in The New Yorker  of Sept. 3, 2012

Detail of Aug. 30 illustration, with added arrow—

IMAGE- Detail of large 'Search for the Lost Tesseract' image with Amy Adams, Richard Zanuck, 'snowflake' structure, and white gloves

  The part of the illustration at upper right is from a post of
  Friday, July 13th, 2012, on the death of producer Richard Zanuck.

  "Pay no attention to the shadow behind the curtain."

Thursday, August 30, 2012

The Cruelest Month

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 6:08 AM

Last night's 10 PM post linked to an April 7, 2012,
post that through a series of further links leads
to Columbia Film Theory .

For other film-related remarks, by a
Columbia alumnus,* see last night's post.

See also the 1.3 MB image from Aug. 16, the night 
of Elvis's Wrap Party. An excerpt from that image
stars Amy Adams—

Images, including the late Richard Zanuck

For Amy, from the current New Yorker

The Master

* N.O.C.D.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Up to Date

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 9:29 PM

"Plato's cave was brought up to date in 1978…."

— Keith Devlin in Mathematics: The Science of Patterns

Related material from yesterday: Touchy-Feely and Plan 9.

"Plan 9 deals with the resurrection of the dead.

IMAGE- Bill Murray explains Ed Wood's 'Plan 9 from Outer Space'

For a rather different approach to Plato, see three posts of August 16, 2012—

Monday, August 27, 2012


Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 5:24 AM

A remark by the late William P. Thurston

Please note: I'm not advocating that
we turn mathematics into a touchy-feely subject.

Noted. But see this passage—

The Mathematical Experience , by Philip J. Davis and Reuben Hersh (1981), updated study edition, Springer, 2011—

From the section titled "Four-Dimensional Intuition," pages 445-446:

"At Brown University Thomas Banchoff, a mathematician, and Charles Strauss, a computer scientist, have made computer-generated motion pictures of a hypercube….

… at the Brown University Computing Center, Strauss gave me a demonstration of the interactive graphic system which made it possible to produce such a film….

… Strauss showed me how all these controls could be used to get various views of three-dimensional projections of a hypercube. I watched, and tried my best to grasp what I was looking at. Then he stood up, and offered me the chair at the control.

I tried turning the hypercube around, moving it away, bringing it up close, turning it around another way. Suddenly I could feel  it!. The hypercube had leaped into palpable reality, as I learned how to manipulate it, feeling in my fingertips the power to change what I saw and change it back again. The active control at the computer console created a union of kinesthetics and visual thinking which brought the hypercube up to the level of intuitive understanding."

Thanks to the Web, a version of this experience created by Harry J. Smith
has been available to non-academics for some time.

IMAGE- The Harry J. Smith Memorial Tesseract

IMAGE- From 'Touchy-Feely: The Musical!'

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Summer Reading

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:56 PM

On the author of a novel published August 14th,
 "Where'd You Go, Bernadette"—

"Semple moved to the Pacific Northwest several years ago
seeking refuge from Los Angeles, but that doesn't mean
that the Emerald City gets a free pass from Semple's
sharp, satirical eye." 

— Stewart Oksenhorn yesterday in The Aspen Times

Related art

IMAGE- 3x3 grid of movie stills with 'North by Northwest' at center

See also a detail from Thursday's 1.3 MB image
"Search for the Lost Tesseract"—

Update of 9 PM EDT (6 PM LA time) the same day, Saturday, Aug. 18—

IMAGE- Cover of 'This One Is Mine,' a novel by Maria Semple

Actually, that one is hers.

Friday, August 17, 2012


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:25 PM

Detail from last night's 1.3 MB image
"Search for the Lost Tesseract"—

The lost tesseract appears here on the cover of Wittgenstein's
Zettel  and, hidden in the form of a 4×4 array, as a subarray 
of the Miracle Octad Generator on the cover of Griess's
Twelve Sporadic Groups  and in a figure illustrating
the geometry of logic.

Another figure—

IMAGE- Serbian chess innovator Svetozar Gligoric dies at 89

Gligoric died in Belgrade, Serbia, on Tuesday, August 14.

From this journal on that date

"Visual forms, he thought, were solutions to 
specific problems that come from specific needs."

— Michael Kimmelman in The New York Times
    obituary of E. H. Gombrich (November 7th, 2001)

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Royal Wrap

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 11:00 PM

For Elvis's Wrap Party 
  ( image, 1.3 MB )

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Doctor Who

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 PM

On Robert A. Heinlein's novel Glory Road

"Glory Road  (1963) included the foldbox , a hyperdimensional packing case that was bigger inside than outside. It is unclear if Glory Road  was influenced by the debut of the science fiction television series Doctor Who  on the BBC that same year. In Doctor Who , the main character pilots a time machine called a TARDIS, which is built with technology which makes it 'dimensionally transcendental,' that is, bigger inside than out."

— Todd, Tesseract article at exampleproblems.com

From the same exampleproblems.com article—

"The connection pattern of the tesseract's vertices is the same as that of a 4×4 square array drawn on a torus; each cell (representing a vertex of the tesseract) is adjacent to exactly four other cells. See geometry of the 4×4 square."

For further details, see today's new page on vertex adjacency at finitegeometry.org.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Euclid vs. Galois

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 11:01 AM


Euclidean square and triangle

Galois square and triangle


This journal on the date of Hilton Kramer's death,
The Galois Tesseract, and The Purloined Diamond.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

For Thor’s Day

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:11 PM

Today's previous post was "Midnight in Oslo (continued)."

The link "a 4-element set" in "Midnight"
was to a more elaborate structure in a post titled "Tesseract."

In memory of an Oslo "hero of midnight"
(a phrase quoted here last September 1)—

A search for material that is more entertaining
Odin 's Tesseract.

See also a related Hollywood story in The Washington Post .

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Steiner’s Systems

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Background— George Steiner in this journal
and elsewhere—

"An intensity of outward attention —
interest, curiosity, healthy obsession —
was Steiner’s version of God’s grace."

Lee Siegel in The New York Times
     March 12, 2009

(See also Aesthetics of Matter in this  journal on that date.)

Steiner in 1969  defined man as "a language animal."

Here is Steiner in 1974  on another definition—

IMAGE- George Steiner on Levi-Strauss viewing man as 'a mythopoetic primate'

Related material—

IMAGE- Daniel Gorenstein quotes Freeman Dyson on physics and the monster group

Also related — Kantor in 1981 on "exquisite finite geometries," and The Galois Tesseract.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 1:06 PM

A followup to this morning's post Stolen Glory— 

Columbia's Butler Library "plays a role in
Paul Auster's 2009 novel Invisible ,
where the novel's main protagonist, Adam Walker,
takes a job as a 'page' in the library's stacks." —Wikipedia

Part I (from Feb. 24)—

IMAGE- 'Wild nights are my glory'- Peter Woit, Mrs. Whatsit, and the tesseract

Part II— (Click to enlarge)

IMAGE- Page quoting Mrs. Whatsit: 'There IS such a thing as a tesseract.'

For the page's source, see Butler Library.

Friday, February 10, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:01 PM
Wednesday, February 1, 2012


 m759 @ 9:16 PM

"Should we arbitrate life and death
at a round table or a square one?"

 Wislawa Szymborska

See also the two previous posts,
Disturbing Archimedes and Tesseract.

Related material—

See also At the Still Point (a post in memory of film editor Sally Menke).

Thursday, February 9, 2012


Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 7:59 PM


See …

  1. The Doors of Perception,
  2. The Diamond Theorem,
  3. Walsh Function Symmetry, and
  4. Yodogawa, 1982.

Related literary material—

Enda's Game  and Tesseract .

Wednesday, February 1, 2012


Filed under: General — m759 @ 9:16 PM

"Should we arbitrate life and death
at a round table or a square one?"

Wislawa Szymborska

See also the two previous posts,
Disturbing Archimedes and Tesseract.


IMAGE- Nobel-Prize-winning poet dies on St. Bridget's Day, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

Enda’s Game*

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

The following passage by Tolkien was suggested by a copy of next Sunday's New York Times Book Review  that arrived in the mail today. (See Orson Scott Card's remarks on page 26— "Uncle Orson"— and the Review 's concluding essay "Grand Allusion.")

"Lastly, tengwesta  [system or code of signs] has also become an impediment. It is in Incarnates clearer and more precise than their direct reception of thought. By it also they can communicate easily with others, when no strength is added to their thought: as, for example, when strangers first meet. And, as we have seen, the use of 'language' soon becomes habitual, so that the practice of ósanwe  (interchange of thought) is neglected and becomes more difficult. Thus we see that the Incarnate tend more and more to use or to endeavour to use ósanwe  only in great need and urgency, and especially when lambe  is unavailing. As when the voice cannot be heard, which comes most often because of distance. For distance in itself offers no impediment whatever to ósanwe . But those who by affinity might well use ósanwe  will use lambe  when in proximity, by habit or preference. Yet we may mark also how the 'affine' may more quickly understand the lambe  that they use between them, and indeed all that they would say is not put into words. With fewer words they come swifter to a better understanding. There can be no doubt that here ósanwe  is also often taking place; for the will to converse in lambe  is a will to communicate thought, and lays the minds open. It may be, of course, that the two that converse know already part of the matter and the thought of the other upon it, so that only allusions dark to the stranger need be made; but this is not always so. The affine** will reach an understanding more swiftly than strangers upon matters that neither have before discussed, and they will more quickly perceive the import of words that, however numerous, well-chosen, and precise, must remain inadequate."

* "If a poem catches a student's interest at all, he or she should damned well be able to look up an unfamiliar word in the dictionary…."

   — Elizabeth Bishop, quoted in the essay "Grand Allusion" mentioned above. For a brief dictionary of most of the unfamiliar words in this post's title and in the above passage, see Vinyar Tengwar  39 (July 1998). This is copyrighted but freely available on the Web.

** The word "affine" has connotations not intended by Tolkien. See that word in this journal. See also page 5 of next Sunday's Times Book Review , which contains a full-page ad for the 50th anniversary edition of A Wrinkle in Time . "There is  such a thing as a tesseract."

Friday, January 27, 2012

Mathematics and Narrative (continued)

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 1:44 AM

Princeton University Press on a book it will publish in March—

Circles Disturbed: The Interplay of Mathematics and Narrative

"Circles Disturbed  brings together important thinkers in mathematics, history, and philosophy to explore the relationship between mathematics and narrative. The book's title recalls the last words of the great Greek mathematician Archimedes before he was slain by a Roman soldier— 'Don't disturb my circles'— words that seem to refer to two radically different concerns: that of the practical person living in the concrete world of reality, and that of the theoretician lost in a world of abstraction. Stories and theorems are, in a sense, the natural languages of these two worlds–stories representing the way we act and interact, and theorems giving us pure thought, distilled from the hustle and bustle of reality. Yet, though the voices of stories and theorems seem totally different, they share profound connections and similarities."

Timeline of the Marvel Cinematic Universe — Norway, March 1942

"The Red Skull finds the Tesseract, a cube of strange power,
said to be the jewel of Odin’s treasure room, in Tonsberg Norway.
 (Captain America: The First Avenger)"

Tesseracts Disturbed — (Click to enlarge)

Detail of Tesseracts Disturbed —

Narrative of the detail—

See Tesseract in this journal and Norway, May 2010

The Oslo Version and Annals of Conceptual Art.

"Oh, what a tangled web we weave…"

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Screwing

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 7:59 AM

"Debates about canonicity have been raging in my field
(literary studies) for as long as the field has been
around. Who's in? Who's out? How do we decide?"

— Stephen Ramsay, "The Hermeneutics of Screwing Around"

An example of canonicity in geometry—

"There are eight heptads of 7 mutually azygetic screws, each consisting of the screws having a fixed subscript (from 0 to 7) in common. The transformations of LF(4,2) correspond in a one-to-one manner with the even permutations on these heptads, and this establishes the isomorphism of LF(4,2) and A8. The 35 lines in S3 correspond uniquely to the separations of the eight heptads into two complementary sets of 4…."

 — J.S. Frame, 1955 review of a 1954 paper by W.L. Edge,
"The Geometry of the Linear Fractional Group LF(4,2)"

Thanks for the Ramsay link are due to Stanley Fish
(last evening's online New York Times ).

For further details, see The Galois Tesseract.

Monday, January 23, 2012

How It Works

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 7:59 PM


J. H. Conway in 1971 discussed the role of an elementary abelian group
of order 16 in the Mathieu group M24. His approach at that time was
purely algebraic, not geometric—

IMAGE- J. H. Conway in 1971 discussed the role of the elementary abelian group of order 16 in the Mathieu group M24. His approach then was purely algebraic, not geometric.

For earlier (and later) discussions of the geometry  (not the algebra )
of that order-16 group (i.e., the group of translations of the affine space
of 4 dimensions over the 2-element field), see The Galois Tesseract.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

The Uploading

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 4:01 PM


"Design is how it works." — Steve Jobs

From a commercial test-prep firm in New York City—


From the date of the above uploading—


After 759

m759 @ 8:48 AM

Childhood's End

From a New Year's Day, 2012, weblog post in New Zealand


From Arthur C. Clarke, an early version of his 2001  monolith

"So they left a sentinel, one of millions they have scattered
throughout the Universe, watching over all worlds with the
promise of life. It was a beacon that down the ages has been
patiently signaling the fact that no one had discovered it.
Perhaps you understand now why that crystal pyramid was set…."

The numerical  (not crystal) pyramid above is related to a sort of
mathematical  block design known as a Steiner system.

For its relationship to the graphic  block design shown above,
see the webpages Block Designs and The Diamond Theorem
as well as The Galois Tesseract and R. T. Curtis's classic paper
"A New Combinatorial Approach to M24," which contains the following
version of the above numerical pyramid—


For graphic  block designs, I prefer the blocks (and the parents)
of Grand Rapids to those of New York City.

For the barbed tail  of Clarke's "Angel" story, see the New Zealand post
of New Year's Day mentioned above.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Mathematics and Narrative, continued

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:01 PM

Mathematics —

(Some background for the Galois tesseract )

(Click to enlarge)



An essay on science and philosophy in the January 2012
Notices of the American Mathematical Society .

Note particularly the narrative explanation of the double-slit experiment—

"The assertion that elementary particles have
free will and follow Quality very closely leads to
some startling consequences. For instance, the
wave-particle duality paradox, in particular the baffling
results of the famous double slit experiment,
may now be reconsidered. In that experiment, first
conducted by Thomas Young at the beginning
of the nineteenth century, a point light source
illuminated a thin plate with two adjacent parallel
slits in it. The light passing through the slits
was projected on a screen behind the plate, and a
pattern of bright and dark bands on the screen was
observed. It was precisely the interference pattern
caused by the diffraction patterns of waves passing
through adjacent holes in an obstruction. However,
when the same experiment was carried out much
later, only this time with photons being shot at
the screen one at a time—the same interference
pattern resulted! But the Metaphysics of Quality
can offer an explanation: the photons each follow
Quality in their actions, and so either individually
or en masse (i.e., from a light source) will do the
same thing, that is, create the same interference
pattern on the screen."

This is from "a Ph.D. candidate in mathematics at the University of Calgary."
His essay is titled "A Perspective on Wigner’s 'Unreasonable Effectiveness
of Mathematics.'" It might better be titled "Ineffective Metaphysics."

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

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Day 256

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:56 PM

Today is day 256 of 2011, Programmers' Day.

Yesterday, Monday, R. W. Barraclough's website pictured the Octad of the Week—


" X never, ever, marks the spot."

See also The Galois Tesseract.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

First Lady

Filed under: General — m759 @ 7:59 AM

Betty Skelton, "the First Lady of Firsts," died on the last day of August.


From this  journal on August thirty-first—

"The Tesseract was the jewel of Odin's treasure room."


Hugo Weaving also played Agent Smith
in The Matrix Trilogy .

For Cynthia Zarin, biographer of Madeleine L'Engle

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

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Boundary (continued*)

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 12:00 AM

It is now midnight. Yesterday was Odin's Day. Today is Thor's Day.

From a weblog post on Captain America and Thor

"While all this [Captain America] is happening an SS officer, Johann Schmidt (Hugo Weaving), has found a religious artefact called the Tesseract which Schmidt describes as 'the jewel of Odin’s treasure room,' linking it in with the Thor storyline."

That's Entertainment  weblog, August 14, 2011

From Wallace Stevens, "An Ordinary Evening in New Haven," Canto III—

The point of vision and desire are the same.
It is to the hero of midnight that we pray
On a hill of stones to make beau mont thereof.

Captain America opened in the United States on Friday, July 22, 2011.

Thor opened in the United States on Friday, May 6, 2011.

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

* Continued from August 30.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Odin’s Day

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

Today is Wednesday.

O.E. Wodnesdæg  "Woden's day," a Gmc. loan-translation of L. dies Mercurii  "day of Mercury" (cf. O.N. Oðinsdagr , Swed. Onsdag , O.Fris. Wonsdei , M.Du. Wudensdach ). For Woden , see Odin  . — Online Etymology Dictionary


Above: Anthony Hopkins as Odin in the 2011 film "Thor"

Hugo Weaving as Johann Schmidt in the related 2011 film "Captain America"—

"The Tesseract* was the jewel of Odin's treasure room."


Weaving also played Agent Smith in The Matrix Trilogy.

The figure at the top in the circle of 13** "Thor" characters above is Agent Coulson.

"I think I'm lucky that they found out they need somebody who's connected to the real world to help bring these characters all together."

— Clark Gregg, who plays Agent Coulson in "Thor," at UGO.com

For another circle of 13, see the Crystal Skull film implicitly referenced in the Bright Star link from Abel Prize (Friday, Aug. 26, 2011)—


Today's New York Times  has a quote about a former mathematician who died on that day (Friday, Aug. 26, 2011)—

"He treated it like a puzzle."

Sometimes that's the best you can do.

* See also tesseract  in this journal.

** For a different arrangement of 13 things, see the cube's 13 axes in this journal.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Personal Link

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 9:00 PM

A search for some background on Dmitri Tymoczko, the subject of yesterday's evening entry on music theory, shows that his name and mine once both appeared in the same web page— "This Week's Finds in Mathematical Physics (Week 234)," by John Baez, June 12, 2006 (linked to by the Wikipedia article on transformational music theory).

In that page, Baez speculates on the possibility of a connection between music theory and Mathieu groups and says—

"For a pretty explanation of M24, also try this:

Steven H. Cullinane, Geometry of the 4 × 4 square, http://finitegeometry.org/sc/16/geometry.html."

I know of no connection* between the groups I discussed there and music theory. For some background on Tymoczko's work, see the helpful survey "Exploring Musical Space," by Julian Hook (Science  magazine, 7 July 2006).

* Apart, that is, from the tesseract (see Geometry of the 4 × 4 Square) shown by Tymoczko in a 2010 lecture


This is perhaps "Chopin's tesseract" from section 8.5 of Tymoczko's new book
A Geometry of Music  (Oxford University Press, 2011).

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Brightness at Noon (continued)

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM

IMAGE- 'There IS such a thing as a tesseract.'

Monday, November 1, 2010

Seasons of…

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 5:24 AM

A Year of Magical Thinking

In memory of Theodore Chaikin Sorensen, who died at noon in New York on Halloween —

Two posts from All Saints' Day, 2009 —

October Endgame and Indignation and Laughter in Toronto.

Related material: New York Lottery on All Hallows' Eve this  year —

Midday 896,  Evening 384.

"Man is a system that transforms itself." (Paul Valéry, Cahiers , Vol. 2, page 896)

"There is  such a thing as a tesseract." (Madeleine L'Engle. See 384 on Halloween 2006.)

Monday, June 21, 2010


Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:30 PM

From a post by Ivars Peterson, Director
of Publications and Communications at
the Mathematical Association of America,
at 19:19 UTC on June 19, 2010—

Exterior panels and detail of panel,
Michener Gallery at Blanton Museum
in Austin, Texas—


Peterson associates the four-diamond figure
with the Pythagorean theorem.

A more relevant association is the
four-diamond view of a tesseract shown here
on June 19 (the same date as Peterson's post)
in the "Imago Creationis" post—

Image-- The Four-Diamond Tesseract

This figure is relevant because of a
tesseract sculpture by Peter Forakis—


This sculpture was apparently shown in the above
building— the Blanton Museum's Michener gallery—
as part of the "Reimagining Space" exhibition,
September 28, 2008-January 18, 2009.

The exhibition was organized by
Linda Dalrymple Henderson, Centennial Professor
in Art History at the University of Texas at Austin
and author of The Fourth Dimension and
Non-Euclidean Geometry in Modern Art

(Princeton University Press, 1983;
new ed., MIT Press, 2009).

For the sculptor Forakis in this journal,
see "The Test" (December 20, 2009).

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

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Imago Creationis

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , , , , — m759 @ 6:00 PM

Image-- The Four-Diamond Tesseract

In the above view, four of the tesseract's 16
vertices are overlaid by other vertices.
For views that are more complete and
moveable, see Smith's tesseract page.

Four-Part Tesseract Divisions


The above figure shows how four-part partitions
of the 16 vertices  of a tesseract in an infinite
Euclidean  space are related to four-part partitions
of the 16 points  in a finite Galois  space

Euclidean spaces versus Galois spaces
in a larger context—



Infinite versus Finite

The central aim of Western religion —

"Each of us has something to offer the Creator...
the bridging of
                 masculine and feminine,
                      life and death.
It's redemption.... nothing else matters."
-- Martha Cooley in The Archivist  (1998)

The central aim of Western philosophy —

              Dualities of Pythagoras
              as reconstructed by Aristotle:
                 Limited     Unlimited
                     Odd     Even
                    Male     Female
                   Light      Dark
                Straight    Curved
                  ... and so on ....

"Of these dualities, the first is the most important; all the others may be seen as different aspects of this fundamental dichotomy. To establish a rational and consistent relationship between the limited [man, etc.] and the unlimited [the cosmos, etc.] is… the central aim of all Western philosophy."
— Jamie James in The Music of the Spheres  (1993)

Another picture related to philosophy and religion—

Jung's Four-Diamond Figure from Aion


This figure was devised by Jung
to represent the Self. Compare the
remarks of Paul Valéry on the Self—

Flight from Eden: The Origins of Modern Literary Criticism and Theory, by Steven Cassedy, U. of California Press, 1990, pages 156-157—



Valéry saw the mind as essentially a relational system whose operation he attempted to describe in the language of group mathematics. "Every act of understanding is based on a group," he says (C, 1:331). "My specialty— reducing everything to the study of a system closed on itself and finite" (C, 19: 645). The transformation model came into play, too. At each moment of mental life the mind is like a group, or relational system, but since mental life is continuous over time, one "group" undergoes a "transformation" and becomes a different group in the next moment. If the mind is constantly being transformed, how do we account for the continuity of the self? Simple; by invoking the notion of the invariant. And so we find passages like this one: "The S[elf] is invariant, origin, locus or field, it's a functional property of consciousness" (C, 15:170 [2:315]). Just as in transformational geometry, something remains fixed in all the projective transformations of the mind's momentary systems, and that something is the Self (le Moi, or just M, as Valéry notates it so that it will look like an algebraic variable). Transformation theory is all over the place. "Mathematical science…  reduced to algebra, that is, to the analysis of the transformations of a purely differential being made up of homogeneous elements, is the most faithful document of the properties of grouping, disjunction, and variation in the mind" (O, 1:36). "Psychology is a theory of transformations, we just need to isolate the invariants and the groups" (C, 1:915). "Man is a system that transforms itself" (C, 2:896).


  Paul Valéry, Oeuvres  (Paris: Pléiade, 1957-60)

C   Valéry, Cahiers, 29 vols. (Paris: Centre National de le Recherche Scientifique, 1957-61)

Note also the remarks of George David Birkhoff at Rice University
in 1940 (pdf) on Galois's theory of groups and the related
"theory of ambiguity" in Galois's testamentary letter—

… metaphysical reasoning always relies on the Principle of Sufficient Reason, and… the true meaning of this Principle is to be found in the “Theory of Ambiguity” and in the associated mathematical “Theory of Groups.”

If I were a Leibnizian mystic, believing in his “preestablished harmony,” and the “best possible world” so satirized by Voltaire in “Candide,” I would say that the metaphysical importance of the Principle of Sufficient Reason and the cognate Theory of Groups arises from the fact that God thinks multi-dimensionally* whereas men can only think in linear syllogistic series, and the Theory of Groups is the appropriate instrument of thought to remedy our deficiency in this respect.

* That is, uses multi-dimensional symbols beyond our grasp.

Related material:

Imago Creationis

A medal designed by Leibniz to show how
binary arithmetic mirrors the creation by God
of something (1) from nothing (0).


Another array of 16 strings of 0's and 1's, this time
regarded as coordinates rather than binary numbers—

Frame of Reference


The Diamond Theorem


Some context by a British mathematician —



by Wallace Stevens

Who can pick up the weight of Britain, 
Who can move the German load 
Or say to the French here is France again? 
Imago. Imago. Imago. 

It is nothing, no great thing, nor man 
Of ten brilliancies of battered gold 
And fortunate stone. It moves its parade 
Of motions in the mind and heart, 

A gorgeous fortitude. Medium man 
In February hears the imagination's hymns 
And sees its images, its motions 
And multitudes of motions 

And feels the imagination's mercies, 
In a season more than sun and south wind, 
Something returning from a deeper quarter, 
A glacier running through delirium, 

Making this heavy rock a place, 
Which is not of our lives composed . . . 
Lightly and lightly, O my land, 
Move lightly through the air again.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Photo caption in NY Times  today— a pianist "preforming" in 1967. (See today's previous post.)

The pianist's life story seems in part to echo that of Juliette Binoche in the film "Bleu." Binoche appeared in this journal yesterday, before I had seen the pianist in today's Times  obituaries. The Binoche appearance was related to the blue diamond in the film "Duelle " (Tuesday morning's post) and the saying of Heraclitus "immortals mortal, mortals immortal" (Tuesday afternoon's post).

This somewhat uncanny echo brings to mind Nabokov

Life Everlasting—based on a misprint!
I mused as I drove homeward: take the hint,
And stop investigating my abyss?
But all at once it dawned on me that this
Was the real point, the contrapuntal theme;
Just this: not text, but texture; not the dream
But topsy-turvical coincidence,
Not flimsy nonsense, but a web of sense.

Whether sense or nonsense, the following quotation seems relevant—

"Archetypes function as living dispositions, ideas in the Platonic sense, that preform and continually influence our thoughts and feelings and actions." –C.G. Jung in Four Archetypes: Mother, Rebirth, Spirit, Trickster, the section titled "On the Concept of the Archetype."

That section is notable for its likening of Jungian archetypes to Platonic ideas and to axial systems of crystals. See also "Cubist Tune," March 18 —


Blue tesseract cover<br /><br />
art, blue crystals in 'Bleu,' lines from 'Blue Guitar'

Monday, May 10, 2010

Requiem for Georgia Brown

Filed under: General — m759 @ 2:45 AM

Image-- Lena Horne in 'Cabin in the Sky'

Paul Robeson in
"King Solomon's Mines," 1937—

Image -- The cast of 1937's 'King Solomon's Mines' goes back to the future

The image above is an illustration from
  "Romancing the Hyperspace," May 4, 2010.

This illustration, along with Georgia Brown's
song from "Cabin in the Sky"—
"There's honey in the honeycomb"—
suggests the following picture.

Image-- Tesseract and Hyperspace (the 4-space over GF(2)). Source: Coxeter's 'Twisted Honeycombs'

"What might have been and what has been
   Point to one end, which is always present."
Four Quartets

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Mathematics and Narrative, continued…

Filed under: General — m759 @ 5:01 AM

The Unfolding

A post for Florencio Campomanes,
former president of the World Chess Federation.

Campomanes died at 83 in the Philippines
at 1:30 PM local time (1:30 AM Manhattan time)
on Monday, May 3, 2010.

From this journal on the date of his death —

"There is such a thing as a tesseract."
Madeleine L'Engle

Image by Christopher Thomas at Wikipedia
Unfolding of a hypercube and of a cube —


Image--Chess game from 'The Seventh Seal'

Related material from a story of the Philippines —

Image-- Alex Garland on how a hypercube unfolds to what he calls a tesseract

Monday, May 3, 2010

An Ordinary Evening

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 8:00 PM

“…geometrically organized, with the parts labeled”

— Ursula K. Le Guin on what she calls “the Euclidean utopia

“There is such a thing as a tesseract.”

Madeleine L’Engle

Related material– Diamond Theory, 1937

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Cubist Tune

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:29 AM

For Desconvencida

Blue tesseract cover art, blue crystals in 'Bleu,' lines from 'Blue Guitar'

See also Wallace Stevens,
"The Relations between Poetry and Painting"

Sunday, December 20, 2009

The Test

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 11:00 AM

Dies Natalis of
Emil Artin

From the September 1953 Bulletin of the American Mathematical Society

Emil Artin, in a review of Éléments de mathématique, by N. Bourbaki, Book II, Algebra, Chaps. I-VII–

"We all believe that mathematics is an art. The author of a book, the lecturer in a classroom tries to convey the structural beauty of mathematics to his readers, to his listeners. In this attempt he must always fail. Mathematics is logical to be sure; each conclusion is drawn from previously derived statements. Yet the whole of it, the real piece of art, is not linear; worse than that its perception should be instantaneous. We all have experienced on some rare occasions the feeling of elation in realizing that we have enabled our listeners to see at a moment's glance the whole architecture and all its ramifications. How can this be achieved? Clinging stubbornly to the logical sequence inhibits the visualization of the whole, and yet this logical structure must predominate or chaos would result."

Art Versus Chaos

From an exhibit,
"Reimagining Space

The above tesseract (4-D hypercube)
sculpted in 1967 by Peter Forakis
provides an example of what Artin
called "the visualization of the whole."

For related mathematical details see
Diamond Theory in 1937.

"'The test?' I faltered, staring at the thing.
'Yes, to determine whether you can live
in the fourth dimension or only die in it.'"
Fritz Leiber, 1959

See also the Log24 entry for
Nov. 26,  2009, the date that
Forakis died.

"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."
Madeleine L'Engle, 1962

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Tuesday September 8, 2009

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:25 PM
Magic Box  

Box containing Froebel's Third Gift-- The Eightfold Cube
 Continued from Dec. 7, 2008,
and from yesterday.



Passages from a classic story:

… he took from his pocket a gadget he had found in the box, and began to unfold it. The result resembled a tesseract, strung with beads….


"Your mind has been conditioned to Euclid," Holloway said. "So this– thing– bores us, and seems pointless. But a child knows nothing of Euclid. A different sort of geometry from ours wouldn't impress him as being illogical. He believes what he sees."

"Are you trying to tell me that this gadget's got a fourth dimensional extension?" Paradine demanded.
"Not visually, anyway," Holloway denied. "All I say is that our minds, conditioned to Euclid, can see nothing in this but an illogical tangle of wires. But a child– especially a baby– might see more. Not at first. It'd be a puzzle, of course. Only a child wouldn't be handicapped by too many preconceived ideas."

"Hardening of the thought-arteries," Jane interjected.

Paradine was not convinced. "Then a baby could work calculus better than Einstein? No, I don't mean that. I can see your point, more or less clearly. Only–"

"Well, look. Let's suppose there are two kinds of geometry– we'll limit it, for the sake of the example. Our kind, Euclidean, and another, which we'll call x. X hasn't much relationship to Euclid. It's based on different theorems. Two and two needn't equal four in it; they could equal y, or they might not even equal. A baby's mind is not yet conditioned, except by certain questionable factors of heredity and environment. Start the infant on Euclid–"

"Poor kid," Jane said.

Holloway shot her a quick glance. "The basis of Euclid. Alphabet blocks. Math, geometry, algebra– they come much later. We're familiar with that development. On the other hand, start the baby with the basic principles of our x logic–"

"Blocks? What kind?"

Holloway looked at the abacus. "It wouldn't make much sense to us. But we've been conditioned to Euclid."

— "Mimsy Were the Borogoves," Lewis Padgett, 1943

Padgett (pseudonym of a husband-and-wife writing team) says that alphabet blocks are the intuitive "basis of Euclid." Au contraire; they are the basis of Gutenberg.

For the intuitive basis of one type of non-Euclidean* geometry– finite geometry over the two-element Galois field– see the work of…

Friedrich Froebel
 (1782-1852), who
 invented kindergarten.

His "third gift" —

Froebel's Third Gift-- The Eightfold Cube
© 2005 The Institute for Figuring
Photo by Norman Brosterman
fom the Inventing Kindergarten
exhibit at The Institute for Figuring

Go figure.

* i.e., other than Euclidean

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Sunday April 26, 2009

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:00 AM
Language Game

Julie Taymor directing a film

Mirrors on the ceiling…

U. of California edition of Wittgenstein's 'Zettel'-- pink cover, white tesseract in background

pink champagne on ice   

— The Eagles  

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thursday December 4, 2008

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM

"The first credential
 we should demand of a critic
 is his ideograph of the good."

— Ezra Pound,
  How to Read

"OCR is a field of research in pattern recognition, artificial intelligence and machine vision."

 — Wikipedia

"I named this script ocode and chmod 755'd it to make it executable…"

Software forum post on the OCR program Tesseract

Wednesday, Dec. 3, 2008:
Pennsylvania lottery
Mid-day 755, evening 016
New York lottery
Mid-day 207, evening 302

Garfield, Dec. 4, 2008:  Mouse's Xmas bulb-lighting
From the author of
The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace:

"Like so many other heroes
 who have seen the light
 of a higher order…."

For further backstory,
click on the mouse.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Monday December 1, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 12:00 PM
Pictures at
an Exhibition

Day Without Art:

Day Without Art logo: X'd-out frame

and therefore…


Art logo: frame not X'd out

From Braque’s birthday, 2006:

“The senses deform, the mind forms. Work to perfect the mind. There is no certitude but in what the mind conceives.”

— Georges Braque,
   Reflections on Painting, 1917

Those who wish to follow Braque’s advice may try the following exercise from a book first published in 1937:

Carmichael on groups, exercise, p. 440

Hint: See the following
construction of a tesseract:

Point, line, square, cube, tesseract
From a page by Bryan Clair

For a different view
of the square and cube
see yesterday’s entry
Abstraction and Faith.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Thursday July 31, 2008

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 12:00 PM
Symmetry in Review

“Put bluntly, who is kidding whom?”

Anthony Judge, draft of
“Potential Psychosocial Significance
of Monstrous Moonshine:
An Exceptional Form of Symmetry
as a Rosetta Stone for
Cognitive Frameworks,”
dated September 6, 2007.

Good question.

Also from
September 6, 2007 —
the date of
Madeleine L’Engle‘s death —

Pavarotti takes a bow
Related material:

1. The performance of a work by
Richard Strauss,
Death and Transfiguration,”
(Tod und Verklärung, Opus 24)
by the Chautauqua Symphony
at Chautauqua Institution on
July 24, 2008

2. Headline of a music review
in today’s New York Times:

Welcoming a Fresh Season of
Transformation and Death

3. The picture of the R. T. Curtis
Miracle Octad Generator
on the cover of the book
Twelve Sporadic Groups:

Cover of 'Twelve Sporadic Groups'

4. Freeman Dyson’s hope, quoted by
Gorenstein in 1986, Ronan in 2006,
and Judge in 2007, that the Monster
group is “built in some way into
the structure of the universe.”

5. Symmetry from Plato to
the Four-Color Conjecture

6. Geometry of the 4×4 Square

7. Yesterday’s entry,
Theories of Everything


There is such a thing

     as a tesseract.

— Madeleine L’Engle

Cover of The New Yorker, April 12, 2004-- Roz Chast, Easter Eggs

For a profile of
L’Engle, click on
the Easter eggs.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Tuesday May 13, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:00 AM
Only the Dead
Know Brooklyn

(continued from April 2004)

David Brooks in
today’s New York Times:

“The mind seems to have
the ability to transcend itself
and merge with a larger
presence that feels more real.”

Sometimes in rather strange ways… An example–

Sunday morning’s entry Annals of Poetry was linked, via the word “tesseract,” to an entry of May 12, 2006, which in turn had a link to the Log24 entries of February 1-15, 2003. From those entries:

Monday, Feb. 10, 2003


Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
— William Butler Yeats

Jimmy Durante


Shari Lewis on cover of 'Party in Shariland'

Shari Lewis

Last Sunday night (May 11),
Turner Classic Movies
showed a film featuring
Jimmy Durante as a
singing-master of
Frank Sinatra:

Movie poster for 'It Happened in Brooklyn'

From earlier this month,
an entry featuring Sinatra and a
different singing-master — not from
Brooklyn but from Tidioute —

Sunday, May 4, 2008

A Diploma for Frank from…

The Old School
Sinatra on cover of USA Weekend, Sunday, May 4, 2008

The Old School
at Tidioute:

The old Tidioute High School, now Tidioute Community Charter School

A product of
the old school

Tidioute girl

These little town blues…

“… all good things — trout as well as
  eternal salvation — come by grace
and grace comes by art
  and art does not come easy.”

A River Runs Through It

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Sunday May 11, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:31 AM
May and Zan

May Swenson, left, and Zan Knudson, right

May Swenson (left)
and Zan Knudson (right)

In memory of poet May Swenson and sports novelist Rozanne Ruth “Zan” Knudson:

Maureen Dowd in today’s New York Times:

“It’s a similar syndrome to the one Katharine Hepburn’s star athlete and her supercilious fiancé have in ‘Pat and Mike.’

The fiancé is always belittling Hepburn, so whenever he’s in the stands, her tennis and golf go kerflooey. Finally, her manager, played by Spencer Tracy, asks the fiancé to stay away from big matches, explaining, ‘You are the wrong jockey for this chick.’

‘You know, except when you’re around, we got a very valuable piece of property here,’ he says, later adding, ‘When you’re around, she’s no good, she’s dead, see?'”

Girl in tesseract on cover of  'The Gameplayers of Zan'

Summary of M. A. Foster’s
The Gameplayers of Zan:

“Then she has a vision of herself,
enclosed by an unfolded hypercube,
and then an immense screen
behind it covered by complex,
     ever-shifting patterns….”

“Christ! What are
 patterns for?”
Amy Lowell   

Does the word ‘tesseract
mean anything to you?

— Robert A. Heinlein

Monday, May 5, 2008

Monday May 5, 2008

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 11:07 AM
Lottery Sermon

"And take upon's
the mystery of things
 as if we were God's spies"
King Lear  

PA Lottery Sunday, May 4, 2008: mid-day 170, evening 144

From Log24 on Aug. 19, 2003
and on Ash Wednesday, 2004:
a reviewer on
An Instance of the Fingerpost::

"Perhaps we are meant to
see the story as a cubist
   retelling of the crucifixion."

From Log24 on
Michaelmas 2007:

Kate Beckinsale (in 'Pearl Harbor') pointing to an instance of the number 144

Google searches suggested by
Sunday's PA lottery numbers
(mid-day 170, evening 144)
and by the above
figure of Kate Beckinsale
pointing to an instance of
the number 144 —

Click to enlarge:

Search for the meaning of 170 and 144, the PA lottery numbers of Sunday, May 4, 2008

Related material:

Beckinsale in another film
(See At the Crossroads,
Log24, Dec. 8, 2006):

"For every kind of vampire,
there is a kind of cross."
Gravity's Rainbow  
Kate Beckinsale in Underworld: Evolution


Kate Beckinsale, adapted from
poster for Underworld: Evolution
(DVD release date 6/6/6)
There is such a thing
as a tesseract.

"It was only in retrospect
that the silliness
became profound."

— Review of  
Faust in Copenhagen

From the conclusion of
Joan Didion's 1970 novel
  Play It As It Lays

Cover of 'Play It As It Lays'

"I know what 'nothing' means,
and keep on playing."

From Play It As It Lays,
the paperback edition of 1990
  (Farrar, Straus and Giroux) —

Page 170:

"By the end of a week she was thinking constantly
about where her body stopped and the air began,
about the exact point in space and time that was the
difference between Maria and other. She had the sense
that if she could get that in her mind and hold it for


even one micro-second she would have what she had
come to get."

"The page numbers
are generally reliable."

Michaelmas 2007   

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Tuesday March 4, 2008

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 1:00 PM
… And for a
    Swiftly Tilting
       Shadowed Planet …

Wm. F. Buckley as Archimedes, moving the world with a giant pen as lever. The pen's point is applied to southern South America.
John Trever, Albuquerque Journal, 2/29/08

The pen's point:

Log24, Dec. 11, 2006

"Are Children the
Ultimate Literary Critics?"
— Top of the News 29
(Nov. 1972): 32-36.

"Sets forth his own aims in writing for children and laments 'slice of life' and chaos in children's literature. Maintains that children like good plots, logic, and clarity, and that they have a concern for 'so-called eternal questions.'"

An Annotated Listing
of Criticism
by Linnea Hendrickson

"She returned the smile, then looked across the room to her youngest brother, Charles Wallace, and to their father, who were deep in concentration, bent over the model they were building of a tesseract: the square squared, and squared again: a construction of the dimension of time."

A Swiftly Tilting Planet,
by Madeleine L'Engle

Cover of 'A Swiftly Tilting Planet' and picture of tesseract

For "the dimension of time,"
see A Fold in Time,
Time Fold, and
Diamond Theory in 1937
A Swiftly Tilting Planet  is a fantasy for children set partly in Vespugia, a fictional country bordered by Chile and Argentina.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Sunday March 2, 2008

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:31 PM
Practical Magic

Halloween 2005:

“They don’t understand
what it is to be awake,
To be living
on several planes at once
Though one cannot speak
with several voices at once.”

— T. S. Eliot,
The Family Reunion

Margaret Wertheim with fellow tesseract authors

Several voices:

Margaret Wertheim in today’s
Los Angeles Times and at
The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace

Linda Dalrymple Henderson, and

Madeleine L’Engle and husband.

From Wertheim’s Pearly Gates:

Wertheim's 'Pearly Gates of Cyberspace,' page 200
“There is such a thing
as a tesseract.”

Madeleine L’Engle   

Friday, September 21, 2007

Friday September 21, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 8:28 AM
Word and Object

"We may recall the ideal of 'dryness' which we associate with the symbolist movement, with writers such as T. E. Hulme and T. S. Eliot, with Paul Valery, with Wittgenstein. This 'dryness' (smallness, clearness, self-containedness) is a nemesis of Romanticism…. The temptation of art… is to console. The modern writer… attempts to console us by myths or by stories."

— Iris Murdoch  

"The consolations of form,
the clean crystalline work"

— Iris Murdoch, 
"Against Dryness"

"As a teacher Quine
was carefully organized,
precise, and conscientious,
but somewhat dry
in his classroom style."

Harvard Gazette 


The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070921-Connectives.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.


The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070921-Lindenbaum-Tarski.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Myth and Story:

The five entries ending
on Jan. 27, 2007

"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."
Madeleine L'Engle  

Friday, September 7, 2007

Friday September 7, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:02 PM

The New York Times online,
Friday, Sept. 7, 2007:

Madeleine L’Engle,
Children’s Writer,
Is Dead

"Madeleine L’Engle, who in writing more than 60 books, including childhood fables, religious meditations and science fiction, weaved emotional tapestries transcending genre and generation, died Thursday [Sept. 6, 2007] in Connecticut. She was 88.

Her death, of natural causes, was announced today by her publisher, Farrar, Straus and Giroux."

More >>

Related material:

Log24 entries of
August 31

"That is how we travel."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070831-Ant2.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

A Wrinkle in Time,
Chapter 5,
"The Tesseract"

— and of 
September 2
(with update of
 September 5)–

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

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Sunday September 2, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 5:11 PM

Comment at the
n-Category Cafe

Re: This Week’s Finds in Mathematical Physics (Week 251)

On Spekkens’ toy system and finite geometry


  • In “Week 251” (May 5, 2007), John wrote:
    “Since Spekkens’ toy system resembles a qubit, he calls it a “toy bit”. He goes on to study systems of several toy bits – and the charming combinatorial geometry I just described gets even more interesting. Alas, I don’t really understand it well: I feel there must be some mathematically elegant way to describe it all, but I don’t know what it is…. All this is fascinating. It would be nice to find the mathematical structure that underlies this toy theory, much as the category of Hilbert spaces underlies honest quantum mechanics.”
  • In the n-Category Cafe ( May 12, 2007, 12:26 AM, ) Matt Leifer wrote:
    “It’s crucial to Spekkens’ constructions, and particularly to the analog of superposition, that the state-space is discrete. Finding a good mathematical formalism for his theory (I suspect finite fields may be the way to go) and placing it within a comprehensive framework for generalized theories would be very interesting.”
  • In the n-category Cafe ( May 12, 2007, 6:25 AM) John Baez wrote:
    “Spekkens and I spent an afternoon trying to think about his theory as quantum mechanics over some finite field, but failed — we almost came close to proving it couldnt’ work.”

On finite geometry:

The actions of permutations on a 4 × 4 square in Spekkens’ paper (quant-ph/0401052), and Leifer’s suggestion of the need for a “generalized framework,” suggest that finite geometry might supply such a framework. The geometry in the webpage John cited is that of the affine 4-space over the two-element field.

Related material:

Update of
Sept. 5, 2007

See also arXiv:0707.0074v1 [quant-ph], June 30, 2007:

A fully epistemic model for a local hidden variable emulation of quantum dynamics,

by Michael Skotiniotis, Aidan Roy, and Barry C. Sanders, Institute for Quantum Information Science, University of Calgary. Abstract: "In this article we consider an augmentation of Spekkens’ toy model for the epistemic view of quantum states [1]…."

Skotiniotis et al. note that the group actions on the 4×4 square described in Spekkens' paper [1] may be viewed (as in Geometry of the 4×4 Square and Geometry of Logic) in the context of a hypercube, or tesseract, a structure in which adjacency is isomorphic to adjacency in the 4 × 4 square (on a torus).

Hypercube from the Skotiniotis paper:



[1] Robert W. Spekkens, Phys. Rev. A 75, 032110 (2007),

Evidence for the epistemic view of quantum states: A toy theory

Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, 31 Caroline Street North, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada N2L 2Y5 (Received 11 October 2005; revised 2 November 2006; published 19 March 2007.)

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

Friday, August 31, 2007

Friday August 31, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:10 PM
Being There

"…it would be quite
a long walk
for him if he had to
walk straight across."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070831-Ant1.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Swiftly Mrs. Who brought
her hands… together.

"Now, you see,"
Mrs. Whatsit said,
"he would be there,
without that long trip.
That is how we travel."

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07A/070831-Ant2.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

A Wrinkle in Time,
Chapter 5,
"The Tesseract"

Related material:

To Measure the Changes

Serious Numbers,


The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix06A/061017-Gump2A.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Balls of Fury

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Tuesday July 10, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 7:59 AM
Pulp Fiction

“There is a body on the cross in my church. (Which made me think at first that the people worshipped the suffering, till my teenage son told me one day at Mass: ‘What else would get everybody’s attention but something really grisly? It’s like Pulp Fiction.’ In other words, we wouldn’t have it any other way.)” —Mary Karr

Corpus Hypercubus,
by Dali.

Pulp fiction:

“Does the word ‘tesseract
mean anything to you?”
— Robert A. Heinlein

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Thursday June 21, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 12:07 PM
Let No Man
Write My Epigraph

(See entries of June 19th.)

"His graceful accounts of the Bach Suites for Unaccompanied Cello illuminated the works’ structural logic as well as their inner spirituality."

Allan Kozinn on Mstislav Rostropovich in The New York Times, quoted in Log24 on April 29, 2007

"At that instant he saw, in one blaze of light, an image of unutterable conviction…. the core of life, the essential pattern whence all other things proceed, the kernel of eternity."

— Thomas Wolfe, Of Time and the River, quoted in Log24 on June 9, 2005

"… the stabiliser of an octad preserves the affine space structure on its complement, and (from the construction) induces AGL(4,2) on it. (It induces A8 on the octad, the kernel of this action being the translation group of the affine space.)"

— Peter J. Cameron, "The Geometry of the Mathieu Groups" (pdf)

"… donc Dieu existe, réponse!"

— Attributed, some say falsely,
to Leonhard Euler
"Only gradually did I discover
what the mandala really is:
'Formation, Transformation,
Eternal Mind's eternal recreation'"

(Faust, Part Two, as
quoted by Jung in
Memories, Dreams, Reflections)


Wolfgang Pauli as Mephistopheles

"Pauli as Mephistopheles
in a 1932 parody of
Goethe's Faust at Niels Bohr's
institute in Copenhagen.
The drawing is one of
many by George Gamow
illustrating the script."
Physics Today


"Borja dropped the mutilated book on the floor with the others. He was looking at the nine engravings and at the circle, checking strange correspondences between them.

'To meet someone' was his enigmatic answer. 'To search for the stone that the Great Architect rejected, the philosopher's stone, the basis of the philosophical work. The stone of power. The devil likes metamorphoses, Corso.'"

The Club Dumas, basis for the Roman Polanski film "The Ninth Gate" (See 12/24/05.)

"Pauli linked this symbolism
with the concept of automorphism."

The Innermost Kernel
 (previous entry)

And from
"Symmetry in Mathematics
and Mathematics of Symmetry
(pdf), by Peter J. Cameron,
a paper presented at the
International Symmetry Conference,
Edinburgh, Jan. 14-17, 2007,
we have

The Epigraph–

Weyl on automorphisms
(Here "whatever" should
of course be "whenever.")

Also from the
Cameron paper:

Local or global?

Among other (mostly more vague) definitions of symmetry, the dictionary will typically list two, something like this:

• exact correspondence of parts;
• remaining unchanged by transformation.

Mathematicians typically consider the second, global, notion, but what about the first, local, notion, and what is the relationship between them?  A structure M is homogeneous if every isomorphism between finite substructures of M can be extended to an automorphism of M; in other words, "any local symmetry is global."

Some Log24 entries
related to the above politically
(women in mathematics)–

Global and Local:
One Small Step

and mathematically–

Structural Logic continued:
Structure and Logic

This entry cites
Alice Devillers of Brussels–

Alice Devillers

"The aim of this thesis
is to classify certain structures
which are, from a certain
point of view, as homogeneous
as possible, that is which have
  as many symmetries as possible."

"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."

Madeleine L'Engle 

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Thursday May 31, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 8:06 PM

Blitz by anonymous
New Delhi user

From Wikipedia on 31 May, 2007:

Shown below is a list of 25 alterations to Wikipedia math articles made today by user

All of the alterations involve removal of links placed by user Cullinane (myself).

The 122.163… IP address is from an internet service provider in New Delhi, India.

The New Delhi anonymous user was apparently inspired by an earlier blitz by Wikipedia administrator Charles Matthews. (See User talk: Cullinane.)

Related material:

Ashay Dharwadker and Usenet Postings
and Talk: Four color theorem/Archive 2.
See also some recent comments from 122.163…
at Talk: Four color theorem.

May 31, 2007, alterations by

  1. 17:17 Orthogonality (rm spam)
  2. 17:16 Symmetry group (rm spam)
  3. 17:14 Boolean algebra (rm spam)
  4. 17:12 Permutation (rm spam)
  5. 17:10 Boolean logic (rm spam)
  6. 17:08 Gestalt psychology (rm spam)
  7. 17:05 Tesseract (rm spam)
  8. 17:02 Square (geometry) (rm spam)
  9. 17:00 Fano plane (rm spam)
  10. 16:55 Binary Golay code (rm spam)
  11. 16:53 Finite group (rm spam)
  12. 16:52 Quaternion group (rm spam)
  13. 16:50 Logical connective (rm spam)
  14. 16:48 Mathieu group (rm spam)
  15. 16:45 Tutte–Coxeter graph (rm spam)
  16. 16:42 Steiner system (rm spam)
  17. 16:40 Kaleidoscope (rm spam)
  18. 16:38 Efforts to Create A Glass Bead Game (rm spam)
  19. 16:36 Block design (rm spam)
  20. 16:35 Walsh function (rm spam)
  21. 16:24 Latin square (rm spam)
  22. 16:21 Finite geometry (rm spam)
  23. 16:17 PSL(2,7) (rm spam)
  24. 16:14 Translation plane (rm spam)
  25. 16:13 Block design test (rm spam)

The deletions should please Charles Matthews and fans of Ashay Dharwadker’s work as a four-color theorem enthusiast and as editor of the Open Directory sections on combinatorics and on graph theory.

There seems little point in protesting the deletions while Wikipedia still allows any anonymous user to change their articles.

Cullinane 23:28, 31 May 2007 (UTC)

Monday, May 21, 2007

Monday May 21, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 4:00 PM
No Royal Roads
Illustration from a
1980 article at JSTOR:

Coxeter as King of Geometry

A more recent royal reference:

"'Yau wants to be the king of geometry,' Michael Anderson, a geometer at Stony Brook, said. 'He believes that everything should issue from him, that he should have oversight. He doesn't like people encroaching on his territory.'" –Sylvia Nasar and David Gruber in The New Yorker, issue dated Aug. 28, 2006

Wikipedia, Cultural references to the Royal Road:

"Euclid is said to have replied to King Ptolemy's request for an easier way of learning mathematics that 'there is no royal road to geometry.' Charles S. Peirce, in his 'How to Make Our Ideas Clear' (1878), says 'There is no royal road to logic, and really valuable ideas can only be had at the price of close attention.'"

Related material:

Day Without Logic
(March 8, 2007)

The Geometry of Logic
(March 10, 2007)

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070521-Tesseract.gif” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

There may be
no royal roads to
geometry or logic,

"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."
— Madeleine L'Engle, 
A Wrinkle in Time

Monday, May 14, 2007

Monday May 14, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 3:09 AM

Crossing Point

From Log24's
"Footprints for Baudrillard"–

"Was there really a cherubim
waiting at the star-watching rock…?
Was he real?
What is real?

— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wind in the Door,
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1973,
conclusion of Chapter Three,
"The Man in the Night"

"Oh, Euclid, I suppose."

— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time,
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1962,
conclusion of Chapter Five,

"The Tesseract"

From Log24's
Xanga footprints,
3:00 AM today:


Texas /431103703/item.html 5/14/2007 3:00 AM

The link leads to a Jan. 23, 2006 entry
on what one philosopher has claimed is
"exactly that crossing point
of constraint and freedom
which is the very essence
of man's nature."

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday May 11, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 11:30 PM
Today’s Lottery Commentary:

Lonesome No More!

In keeping with the spirit of previous Log24 entries, here is today’s Pennsylvania Lottery commentary.  This afternoon’s entry suggests an interpretation of today’s numbers as comments on the new film “Georgia Rule.”

Pennsylvania Lottery today:
Mid-day 384
Evening 952

Today’s mid-day number, 384, is the number of symmetries of the tesseract, a geometric figure illustrated on the cover of the novel The Gameplayers of Zan (see, for instance, May 10, 2007).  That novel suggests an interpretation of today’s evening number, 952, as addressing (literally) the subject of Life.

See the address mathforum.org/library/view/952.html.

From that address:

“The Game of Life is played on a field of cells, each of which has eight neighbors (adjacent cells). A cell is either occupied (by an organism) or not. The rules for deriving a generation from the previous one are these: Death – If an occupied cell has 0, 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, or 8 occupied neighbors, the organism dies (0, 1: of loneliness; 4 thru 8: of overcrowding). Survival – If an occupied cell has two or three neighbors, the organism survives to the next generation. Birth – If an unoccupied cell has three occupied neighbors, it becomes occupied.”

Relevance to the film “Georgia Rule”: lonesomeness, generations, and the Lord’s name–

Georgia is a “lonesome and decent widow in wholesome Hull, Idaho…. her framed motto is ‘Count Your Blessings’ and she’s ready to ram [a] soap bar into your mouth if you insult the Lord’s name.” –David Elliott, San Diego Union-Tribune, May 11, 2007

There is not universal agreement on just what is the Lord’s name. Perhaps it includes the number 952.

From The Gameplayers of Zan:

“The Game in the Ship cannot be approached as a job, a vocation, a career, or a recreation. To the contrary, it is Life and Death itself at work there. In the Inner Game, we call the Game Dhum Welur, the Mind of God. And that Mind is a terrible mind, that one may not face directly and remain whole. Some of the forerunners guessed it long ago– first the Hebrews far back in time, others along the way, and they wisely left it alone, left the Arcana alone.”

From Bartlett’s Familiar Quotations:

“Nothing can be produced out of nothing.”
— 10th edition, 1919, page 952

See also “Zen and Language Games
and “Is Nothing Sacred?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Thursday May 10, 2007

Filed under: General — m759 @ 10:31 AM
Thanks to Xangan JadedFey
for the following


on the previous entry:

Wikipedia entry - Green

Related material:

All Hallows’ Eve, 2005

Tesseract on the cover of The Gameplayers of Zan

— as well as
Balanchine’s Birthday
and the color worn by
Jean Butler in
Women of the Sidhe
(Wednesday’s entry).

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Thursday May 3, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 3:00 PM
A Web
of Links

"Some postmodern theorists like to talk about the relationship between 'intertextuality' and 'hypertextuality'; intertextuality makes each text a 'mosaic of quotations' [Kristeva, Desire in Language, Columbia U. Pr., 1980, 66] and part of a larger mosaic of texts, just as each hypertext can be a web of links and part of the whole World-Wide Web." —Wikipedia

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070503-Tiffany.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

Related material

Day Without Logic,
Introduction to Logic,
The Geometry of Logic,
Structure and Logic,
Spider-Man and Fan:

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070503-Devillers.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

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

Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday April 20, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:31 PM

In Grand Rapids today

"… Bush spoke and answered audience questions for nearly 90 minutes inside East Grand Rapids High School in suburban Grand Rapids….

After leaving the school, Bush's motorcade stopped at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in downtown Grand Rapids, where he stood silently for a few moments after placing a bouquet of white roses at Ford's burial site on the museum grounds. The 38th president, who grew up in Grand Rapids, died Dec. 26 at age 93."


Mich. Lottery Apr. 20, 2007: Day 019, Night 001


For the meaning of the lottery icons
above, see this morning's entry and
an entry that it links to —
Time's Labyrinth continued
of March 8, 2007.

For the meaning of multispeech,
see the entries of
All Hallows' Eve, 2005:

Tesseract on the cover of The Gameplayers of Zan
"There is such a thing
as a tesseract."
A Wrinkle in Time 

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Tuesday April 3, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: , — m759 @ 1:00 AM

Mathematics Awareness Month

Related material:

"But what is it?"
Calvin demanded.
"We know that it's evil,
but what is it?"

"Yyouu hhave ssaidd itt!"
Mrs. Which's voice rang out.
"Itt iss Eevill. Itt iss thee
Ppowers of Ddarrkknesss!"

A Wrinkle in Time

AMS Notices cover, April 2007

"After A Wrinkle in Time was finally published, it was pointed out to me that the villain, a naked disembodied brain, was called 'It' because It stands for Intellectual truth as opposed to a truth which involves the whole of us, heart as well as mind.  That acronym had never occurred to me.  I chose the name It intuitively, because an IT does not have a heart or soul.  And I did not understand consciously at the time of writing that the intellect, when it is not informed by the heart, is evil."

See also
"Darkness Visible"
"When all is said and done,
science is about things and
theology is about words."
— Freeman Dyson,
New York Review of Books,
issue dated May 28, 1998

"Does the word 'tesseract'
mean anything to you?"

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Saturday March 10, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — m759 @ 2:00 AM

A new page at finitegeometry.org,
The Geometry of Logic,
includes the following figure:

The 16 binary connectives arranged in a tesseract

There is such a thing
as a tesseract.

— Madeleine L’Engle

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Wednesday March 7, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 8:35 AM
Footprints for

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070307-Baudrillard.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

"Was there really a cherubim
waiting at the star-watching rock…?
Was he real?
What is real?


— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wind in the Door,
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1973,
conclusion of Chapter Three,
"The Man in the Night"


"Oh, Euclid, I suppose."

— Madeleine L'Engle, A Wrinkle in Time,
Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1962,
conclusion of Chapter Five,
"The Tesseract"

In memory of the French philosopher Jean Baudrillard, who died yesterday, Tuesday, March 6, 2007. 

The following Xanga footprints may be regarded as illustrating Log24 remarks of Dec. 10, 2006 on the Library of Congress, geometry, and bullshit, as well as remarks of Aug. 28, 2006 on the temporal, the eternal, and St. Augustine.

From the District of Columbia–
Xanga footprints in reverse
chronological order from
the noon hour on Tuesday,
March 6, 2007, the date
of Baudrillard's death:

District of Columbia
Beijing String
12:04 PM
District of Columbia
12:03 PM
District of Columbia
About God, Life, Death
12:03 PM
District of Columbia
A Library of Congress Reading
12:03 PM
District of Columbia
Binary Geometry
12:03 PM
District of Columbia
Prequel on St. Cecelia's Day
12:03 PM
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