Log24

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Putting the “I” in “IT”

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

Jennifer Scott at IT Pro , Feb. 16, 2012, on Autonomy

Mike Lynch, founder of Autonomy  and vice president
of information management at HP, took to the stage
at his new parent company’s global partner conference
to impart his philosophy to the 3,000 partners gathered.

'It is no longer about the data but about the meaning
of that data,' he said. 'There is a fundamental revolution
going on in information and the industry is now about
the "I" not the "T" in IT.'"

Click on the logo below for the source.

See also today's previous post and…

Madeleine L'Engle in
The Irrational Season
(1977), Chapter 9:

"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."

Monday, September 21, 2009

Monday September 21, 2009

Filed under: General — Tags: , , — m759 @ 2:56 AM
Keys

A Google search for "Das Scheinen," a very rough translation into Heidegger's German of "The Shining," leads to a song. A search for the English version of the song leads to a site with a sidebar advertising Pearl Jam's new (Sept. 20) album "Backspacer."
 

Packaging:

Pearl Jam 'Backspacer' album released Sept. 20, 2009

Happy birthday,
 Stephen King.

Background:

Yesterday's entries
and the plot of
L'Engle's classic
A Wrinkle in Time.
(See this journal's entries
for March 2008.)

The Pearl Jam album cover art
is of particular interest in light
of King's story "Apt Pupil" and
of Katherine Neville's remark
"Nine is a very powerful
Nordic number.
"

Those who prefer more sophisticated
aesthetic theory may click on the
following keys:

Back Space key from manual typewriter, linking to Babich on Music, Nietzsche, and Heidegger
Shift Lock key from manual typewriter, linking to Levin's 'The Philosopher's Gaze'

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Tuesday August 21, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 8:14 AM
In the Details

I Ching hexagram 14, box style

Symbol from the
box-style I Ching

Related material:
The five Log24 entries
ending on August 1

Lou Beach, Science and Magic, New York Times 8/21/07

Illustration by Lou Beach
in today's New York Times
article on science and magic

Related material:
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"
in ART WARS.
 
"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?"
 

Monday, March 19, 2007

Monday March 19, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 10:31 AM
The Naked Brain

The cover (pdf) of the Notices of the American Mathematical Society for April 2007 (Mathematics Awareness Month) features a naked disembodied brain (Log24, March 16), courtesy of researchers at the Catholic University of Louvain.
 

Related material:

 

Log24, Jan. 26

"… at last she realized
what the Thing on the dais was.
IT was a brain.
A disembodied brain…."
 
A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle
"There could not be an objective test
that distinguished a clever robot
from a really conscious person."
 
— Daniel Dennett in TIME magazine,
Daniel Dennett in his office

Daniel Dennett, Professor of Philosophy
and Director of the
Center for Cognitive Studies
at Tufts University,
in his office on campus.
(Boston Globe, Jan. 29, 2006.
Photo © Rick Friedman.)

 

Related recommended
reading and viewing:

Tom Wolfe's essay
"Sorry, But Your Soul Just Died,"
and a video of an interview
 with Wolfe.
 

Friday, March 16, 2007

Friday March 16, 2007

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: — m759 @ 10:48 AM
"Geometry,
 Theology,
 and Politics:

 
Context and Consequences of 

the Hobbes-Wallis Dispute"
(pdf)

 

by Douglas M. Jesseph
Dept. of Philosophy and Religion
North Carolina State University

Excerpt:

"We are left to conclude that there was something significant in Hobbes's philosophy that motivated Wallis to engage in the lengthy and vitriolic denunciation of all things Hobbesian.

In point of fact, Wallis made no great secret of his motivations for attacking Hobbes's geometry, and the presence of theological and political motives is well attested in a 1659 letter to Huygens. He wrote:

But regarding the very harsh diatribe against Hobbes, the necessity of the case, and not my manners, led to it. For you see, as I believe, from other of my writings how peacefully I can differ with others and bear those with whom I differ. But this was provoked by our Leviathan (as can be easily gathered fro his other writings, principally those in English), when he attacks with all his might and destroys our universities (and not only ours, but all, both old and new), and especially the clergy and all institutions and all religion. As if the Christian world knew nothing sound or nothing that was not ridiculous in philosophy or religion; and as if it has not understood religion because it does not understand philosophy, nor philosophy because it does not understand mathematics. And so it seemed necessary that now some mathematician, proceeding in the opposite direction, should show how little he understand this mathematics (from which he takes his courage). Nor should we be deterred from this by his arrogance, which we know will vomit poison and filth against us. (Wallis to Huygens, 11 January, 1659; Huygens 1888-1950,* 2: 296-7)

The threats that Hobbes supposedly posed to the universities, the clergy, and all religion are a consequence of his political and theological doctrines. Hobbes's political theory requires that the power of the civil sovereign be absolute and undivided. As a consequence, such institutions as universities and the clergy must submit to the dictates of the sovereign in all matters. This extends, ironically enough, to geometry, since Hobbes notoriously claimed that the sovereign could ban the teaching of the subject and order 'the burning of all books of Geometry' if he should judge geometric principles 'a thing contrary to [his] right of dominion, or to the interest of men that have dominion' (Leviathan (1651) 1.11, 50; English Works** 3: 91). In the area of church government, Hobbes's doctrines are a decisive rejection of the claims of Presbyterianism, which holds that questions of theological doctrine is [sic] to be decided by the elders of the church– the presbytery– without reference to the claims of the sovereign. As a Presbyterian minister, a doctor of divinity, and professor of geometry at Oxford, Wallis found abundant reason to reject this political theory."

* Huygens, Christiaan. 1888-1950. Les oeuvres complètes de Chrisiaan Huygens. Ed. La Société Hollandaise des Sciences. 22 vols. The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff.

** Hobbes, Thomas. [1839-45] 1966. The English Works of Thomas Hobbes of Malmesbury, now First Collected and Edited by Sir William Molesworth. Edited by William Molesworth. 11 vols. Reprint. Aalen, Germany: Scientia Verlag.

 

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

The image “http://www.log24.com/log/pix07/070316-AMScover.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

"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"
in ART WARS.
 

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Saturday January 27, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 9:00 AM
Art and the
Holy Spirit

Madeleine L'Engle in The Irrational Season (1977), beginning of Chapter 9 (on Pentecost):

"The Holy Spirit, the third person of the Trinity, is the easiest of this not-at-all-easy concept for me to understand.  Any artist, great or small, knows moments when something more than he takes over, and he moves into a kind of 'overdrive,' where he works as ordinarily he cannot work.  When he is through, there is a sense of exhilaration, exhaustion, and joy.  All our best work comes in this fashion, and it is humbling and exciting.

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."
 

Friday, January 26, 2007

Friday January 26, 2007

Filed under: General — Tags: — m759 @ 2:48 PM
 
IT
 
"… at last she realized
what the Thing on the dais was.
IT was a brain.
A disembodied brain…."
 
A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle

"There could not be an objective test
that distinguished a clever robot
from a really conscious person."

— Daniel Dennett in TIME magazine,
issue dated Mon., Jan. 29, 2007

 

Daniel Dennett in his office

 

Daniel Dennett, Professor of Philosophy
and Director of the
Center for Cognitive Studies
at Tufts University,
in his office on campus.
(Boston Globe, Jan. 29, 2006.
Photo © Rick Friedman.)

Hexagram 39:
Obstruction

I Ching, Hexagram 39

The Judgment

Obstruction. The southwest furthers.
(See Zenna Henderson.) 
The northeast does not further.
 (See Daniel Dennett.)
It furthers one to see the great man.
 (See Alan Turing.)
Perseverance brings good fortune.

"If telepathy is admitted
it will be necessary
to tighten our test up."
 
Alan Turing, 1950
 
Amen.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

Saturday June 11, 2005

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

Evil

Some academics may feel that a denunciation of an essay by one of their fellow academics as "evil" (see this morning's entry The Last Word) goes too far.

Here is a followup to that entry.

From the Riviera Presbyterian Church, a sermon quoting Madeleine L’Engle's classic A Wrinkle in Time:
 

For a moment there was the darkness of space, then another planet. The outlines of this planet were not clean and clear. It seemed to be covered with a smoky haze. Through the haze Meg thought she could make out the familiar outlines of continents like pictures in her Social Studies books. "Is it because of our atmosphere that we can't see properly?" she asked anxiously. "No, Meg, yyou know thattt itt iss nnott tthee attmosspheeere," Mrs. Which said. "Yyou mmusstt bee brrave."

"It's the Thing!" Charles Wallace cried. "It's the Dark Thing we saw… when we were riding on Mrs. Whatsit's back!" "Did it just come?" Meg asked in agony, unable to take her eyes from the sickness of the shadow which darkened the beauty of the earth. Mrs. Whatsit sighed. "No, Meg. It hasn't just come. It has been there for a great many years. That is why your planet is such a troubled one." "I hate it!" Charles Wallace cried passionately. "I hate the Dark Thing!" Mrs. Whatsit nodded. "Yes, Charles dear. We all do." "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 Ddarrkknessss!" "But what's going to happen?" Meg's voice trembled. "Oh, please, Mrs. Which, tell us what's going to happen!" "We will continue tto ffight!" Something in Mrs. Which's voice made all three of the children stand straighter, throwing back their shoulders with determination, looking at the glimmer that was Mrs. Which with pride and confidence. "And we're not alone, you know, children," came Mrs. Whatsit, the comforter. "All through the universe it's being fought, all through the cosmos… and some of our very best fighters have come right from your own planet, and it's a little planet, dears, out on the edge of a little galaxy." 

"Who have some of our fighters been?" Calvin asked. "Oh, you must know them dear," Mrs. Whatsit said. Mrs. Who's spectacles shone out at them triumphantly, "And the light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not." "Jesus!" Charles Wallace said. "Why, of course, Jesus!" "Go on, Charles, love. There were others. All your great artists. They've been lights for us to see by." "Leonardo da Vinci?" Calvin suggested tentatively. "And Michelangelo?" "And Shakespeare," Charles Wallace called out, "and Bach! And Pasteur and Madame Curie and Einstein!" Now Calvin's voice rang with confidence. "And Schweitzer and Gandhi and Buddha and Beethoven and Rembrandt and St. Francis!" "Watch!" the Medium told them. The earth with its fearful covering of dark shadow swam out of view and they moved rapidly through the Milky Way. And there was the Thing again. Suddenly there was a great burst of light through the Darkness. The light spread out and where it touched the Darkness the Darkness disappeared. The light spread until the patch of Dark Thing had vanished, and there was only a gentle shining, and through the shining came the stars, clear and pure. No shadows. No fear. Only the stars and the clear darkness of space, quite different from the fearful darkness of the Thing. "You see!" the Medium cried, smiling happily. "It can be overcome! It is being overcome all the time!"

And it is. Lift up your hearts, lift up your heads, catch the ball, practice Advent, see in the dark. You are a city set on a hill, whose light cannot be hid. said Jesus, and he believed it.

 

Amen.

Friday, August 30, 2002

Friday August 30, 2002

Filed under: General,Geometry — Tags: , — m759 @ 2:30 AM

For Mary Shelley, on her birthday: A Chain of Links The creator of Frankenstein might appreciate the following chain of thought. Lucifer.com Lucifer Media Corporation Lucifer Media Sites The Extropy Institute: International Transhumanist Solutions Why Super-Human Intelligence Would Be Equivalent To Precognition, by Marc Geddes:

"Consider the geometry of multiple dimensions as an analogy for mental abilities… …if there is a 4th dimension of intelligence, to us ordinary humans stuck with 3 dimensional reasoning, this 4th dimension would be indistinguishable from precognition. Post-humans would appear to us ordinary humans as beings which could predict the future in ways which would be inexplicable to us. We should label post-humans as 'Pre-Cogs.'

In the Steven Speilberg [sic]  film Minority Report, we encounter genetically engineered humans with precisely the abilities described above."

Internet Movie Database page on "Minority Report"

IMDb page on "Minority Report" author Philip K. Dick

IMDb biography of Philip K. Dick, where our chain of links ends.  Here Dick says that

"The basic tool for the manipulation of reality is the manipulation of words. If you can control the meaning of words, you can control the people who must use the words."

On the other hand, Dick also says here that

"Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away."

These two quotations summarize, on the one hand, the cynical, relativistic nominalism of the postmodernists and, on the other hand, the hard-nosed realism of the Platonists.

What does all this have to do with "the geometry of multiple dimensions"?

Consider the famous story for adolescents, A Wrinkle in Time, by Madeleine L'Engle.   The author, a well-meaning Christian, tries, like all storytellers,  to control her readers by controlling the meaning of words.   The key word in this book is "tesseract," a term from multi-dimensional geometry.   She insists that a tesseract has mystic properties and cannot be visualized.  She is wrong (at least about the visualizing).

See The Tesseract: A look into 4-dimensional space, by Harry J. Smith.

See also the many revealing comments in Harry J. Smith's Guestbook.

One of Smith's guests remarks, apropos of Smith's comments on St. Joseph, that he has his own connection with St. Augustine.

For a adult-level discussion of Augustine, time, eternity, and Platonism, see the website Time as a Psalm in St. Augustine, by A. M. Johnston.

See also the remark headlining Maureen Dowd's New York Times column of August 28, 2002, Saint Augustine's Day:

"I'm with Dick."

Whether the realist Dick or the nominalist Dick, she does not say.

As for precognition, see my series of journal notes below, which leads up to two intriguing errors in an Amazon.com site on the "Forbidden Planet" soundtrack.   The first two audio samples from this soundtrack are (wrongly) entitled "Birdland" and "Flamingo."  See also the West Wing episode rebroadcast on Wednesday, August 28, 2002,

The Black Vera Wang

C. J. Cregg (Allison Janney), who models a black Vera Wang dress in that episode, has the Secret Service codename Flamingo.

"…that woman in black She's a mystery She's everything a woman should be Woman in black got a hold on me"

(Foreigner 4 in my August 28 note below)

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