A muggish morning. I just returned from my morning constitutional and a sally to the Yankee government post office. Both were challenging, the former because of the absence of wind and the already too high humidity – August already portends to be a robust ansatz of Tartarus – and the latter because of the condition of main street courtesy of the town conscript parents to erradicate productivity and civil enjoyment. But I can say I shall not envy the workers laying road goop next week, assuming they are actually that efficient. My dark side whispers that they will leave the grated road for a month or two to increase the accident incidence on main street.
That mood set, I ran across this cartoon: [Link]
yesterday, and was immediately taken by its accuracy, on many azimuths. First, I have noted on Amazon and B&N and such like that reviews are somewhere between puerile and putrid, and generally indicate that the reviewer is not only a bog but a slime mold level Delta bog. But to give the false appearance of fairness I shall note that the review censor negates any review with any trace of wit, wisdom, or intelligence. So the neuroneg incidence is amplified. I have entertained the conjecture that the review censor has to lack these qualities himself (herself) or be so alienated by their job that they have to seek gratification by a fifth column effort. And I also conjecture that Amazon (in particular) and B&N and such like that encourage (indirectly and probably covertly) such behavior since they do not want valid nor lucid criticism of either themselves or the goods they sell. Better to be perceived moronic and vapid than evil and greedy.
As to the issue of enemy-of-my-enemy thinking and decision making, I have discussed this previously with movie reviews from TIME magazine. I still sample movie reviews; they still (mostly) use a five point rating system; and I do not attend any movies because they all get 2-4 points. I have not observed a movie receiving either one or five points in several years and since these are the only movies worth viewing, I do not view any movie that I have to directly pay for the opportunity. Except the John Carter movie, which I paid for but did not attend, but that was a matter of FD SCP and our introversion.
I did view the John Carter movie – on DVD. It was terrible. Too many failures to adhere to the original text. Fail. And I recently viewed Dark Skies, lent me by my colleague Magnetic Inductance Force. It was a wondrous groaner, intended to and succeeding at offending an many as possible, to paraphrase the Kingston Trio song. Not recommended for teenagers – small children won;t enjoy but they’ll miss the nastiness, or anyone who thinks racism is unnatural or thinks it a government conspiracy. Unriotous galgenhumor. But not viewable in a theater. Nor could a review be written on Amazon or B&B or such like.
But returning to the cartoon, I have been struck by a most serious question: is it possible to have a good physics books without maths? My hypothesis is a resounding NO! Which may explain why physics book enjoys such a small marketplace given the algebra denialism that is rampant in Amerika.