Dante was a Piker

Yesterday, while waiting for the water to recede enough to motor to Huntsville, I had a realization of the christianist hell.

I watched an interview with Mr. Gore on his new book.

By the second answer I was in excruciating intellectual pain and wishing I could become asentient and aintelligent to obtain some relief. Happily, FD SCP changed the channel.

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Multiverse – Multivapid

Not at gym this morning. The weather beavers have foretold all sorts of direness and FD SCP has commanded my localization until such time as she relaxes. Not that I blame her. I wasn’t keen about roaring home – maybe – a few moments from now and finding irritation, either damage to the castellum or, more probably, an absence of electric potential courtesy of Arab Electron Uncooperative’s absence of dependability. 

But as the storm edge approaches, I find myself reflecting on various other matters. First, an article [Link] describing a kritik of some of the current multiverse grr brrr. Not new, I fear, but also not too loudly propagated given the current perversion of trying to force large quantities of spayed/neutered science on an uninterested boggerate. In my mind it comes back to the discussion we used to have when I was in graduate shule about how big a stochastic event has to be to split a universe. We never quite reached any stability on this matter because we were struggling with the whole conservation of mass-energy thing. Nowadays we sorta sweep that one under the rug with some mumblage about locality and information.

The multiverse idea is a popular one with science fiction writers, or at least was. I suspect it still is even though I don;t find many contemporary authors who can command my attention span – time sufficiently strongly for me to put them on the regular read list. But the fiction part of all this is fairly damning, that of communication and or travel between universes.

I have mentioned before that I don’t approve very much of the current efforts to popularize science for the masses. My primary objection is that they aren’t interested and all that is being done is annoy them. I have recently learned that too many of the authors of these works are incapable of story telling and their books are worse than boring, they are unengaging. I am reminded of the old saw about not trying to teach some skill to an animal because it is not only doomed to fail but annoys the animal.

I have no objections to having some works available for the interested, but they need to be well written and engaging and not forced on the public. And access for communication would also be good, again on an availability basis. That’s the opposite of what we have now. We have a social pressure for scientists to do “outreach” always in the form of a badly composed book or a structured presentation. Boring! Ineffective! Off-putting! I don’t see things changing, shy of some nasty extinction, but that doesn’t mean we can’t illuminate the stupidity.

Which is part of the problem with this multiverse stuff. Yes, it’s possible, but it’s almost surely irrelevant in the boggish sense. We aren’t going to go for vacation in the next universe but three and we aren’t going to exchange email with the alternate us in universe thirty-seven who married the other girl friend. Probably.

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False Science?

Calm? Hot? before the storm! The weather beavers are foretelling horrible winds early tomorrow and, perhaps, this is unclear, thunderstorms either before or after Either my attention is flagging or these guys are getting less clear.
 
Speaking of which, I ran across an article [Link] about some work at Ohio State U on “False beliefs persist, even after instant online corrections”. The appeal is obvious. The idea is not; that somehow instant “corrections” can be generated and displayed during (e.g.,) web surfing. I suppose that such may be possible in an experimental context, but in actuality? Probability zero, IMHO.

The first speed bump in crediting this thesis is that I actually believe what I read on the internet. The internet has a trust value of almost zero, edging out the bible, but only just and probably because of its greater volume (number of ASCII characters.) But the internet is unvalidated, unverified, unsubstantiated in almost all instances. So only the gullible and asentient are going to believe freely.

The second is the matter of true and false. Ignoring for the moment the inappropriate use of the terms outside a religionist context, the premise that falseness can be corrected is fraught with peril. Who determines the correctness and how? How can one rationally accept (as an ansatz for belief) anything on the internet absent some supporting information on testing or similar validation effort? Only those who are askeptic and arational?

It is also rather insightful of how whacked psychologists seem to be from science that they can even propose any such thing. In a sense, everything in science is false, only hopefully decreasing over time. But those who collecteth not stamps, in Eddington’s taxonomy, tend to use better language.

Which brings us to another bump. It is well known that humans tend to fixate on the first experience with some matter and even if change in the information occurs later, it does not stick to the mind as solidly. This is part of why much scientific progress is made by the young who have not seen things and science often seems to progress generationally. But how do you “correct” for this effect?

I fear this just adds substantiation to something my father once told me “stirred stercus smells ten times worse.”

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Bribery Failure

Back to modal, I hope. At least week in and some activity.

On which note, I was a bit abashed by an article [Link] on some work at U Chicago about a practice I was unaware of and am not sure I understand. The lead paragraph states, of the study,

“More than 30 percent of high school graduates were offered state financial aid if they went to college in state, but less than 3 percent changed their decision about where to go to school or where to live once they graduated”

I think this says that of the population offered scholarships at in-state colleges, 0.1 were unmoved. But that wayward “and” is confusing.

I think I can comprehend the mechanics of offering top ranked (by whatever idiosyncratic metrics) high shule students scholarships to attend in-state colleges in hopes of retaining them. But what is not clear is whether the scholarship has a covenant requiring such. And that seems to be a critical factor in this presentation that got left out.

But leaping into a series of unjustified assumptions< let us suppose that most of these students are going to major in the employable disciplines: business; STEM; medicine; or law. Success in all of these is a matter of as good an educations as possible so if there is a perception that a better education is available elsewhere, then go there. The same goes for career.

So where’s the drama coming from? Why the wonder?

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Punishment of the Righteous

I ran across this cartoon [Link]

this morning and it struck a lot of resonances.

Despite the blatant extrovertist aspect, it reminds me of my own shule days, at least prior to college when I got to exercise a bit more control over content.

It may be argued that the children are a great deal more practical and realistic than the adult educationalist. Except I’m not at all sure what a “cootie-catcher” is. But the hat bit is definitely more useful and satisfying than an origami duck. Which does not look like a duck, or even a coot. After all, a paper hat can be of service when one has to endure weather, such as rain or snow or even low temperature and want to retain body heat. After all, the brain uses about 60 watts and that heat can get lost fast through the skull.

It may also be argued that origami is an art form. I fear I take the attitude that something is an art form only if (a) it gives me some form of mental satisfaction, and (b) I choose to learn it. The extent of my origami learning is folding paper airplanes. At one time I could fold a hat but once my head got too big for a standard sheet of paper I ceased and lost – effectively – the skill. Neither is an art form IMHO, any more than mopping floors or metabolizing. Although emptying one’s bladder after a long drive may be, at least in terms of intense mental satisfaction.

This was the paradigm of shule in my day. Almost all of what was covered there was slow, vapid, and uninteresting. I learned a lot more after schule and on weekends reading on my own. It is very hard to get much out of a class when you have read the whole textbook in the first week but still have to pay a reasonable amount of attention to avoid harassment by the educationalists, who are usually very insecure and unable to cope with intelligence or rationality. Hence the punishment of the righteous. And paper cuts would inevitably result from all the worthless paperwork that had to be done. Of course only the intelligent were punished for not doing meaningless busy work. Extroverts who didn’t do it were excused because they were real people. Or football players. Or some such.

Occasionally I have a reverie of being young and imprisoned in a contemporary shule where they only teach the test. I fear I should be a suicide datum.

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Squeezed States

It’s that time of week again. Tab hawgin’ day. So all you reads, such as you are in number, get the left-overs from the browser refrigerator.

First of all, I note in the Register [Link] that MegaHard is blaming the sales failure of Winders Ate on the computer manufacturers? Has the grand exalter cudzu of MegaHard, whoever he is now that Bill Gates has absconded, grown a toothbrush mustache and taken to wearing an arm band and jack boots? Will Jewish code writers be blamed next?

Once more the English media comes through when the Amerikan media fails spectacularly. Of course that could have to do with the superiority of English shules in teaching English bairns how to read and rite and figger and all that not covered in Amerikan shules. They may be illegitimate tyrants but at least they don’t only instruct their children on only what is on the test. And a government test at that. If we’re going to have a test for all our shule children it needs to be a FOST.[1]

Anyway we have to ask why would all those computer builders deliberately fornicate MegaHard. After all, MegaHard has been so good to them, requiring them to replace BIOS with a system that assures reduced sales and lots of overhead, and to use an OS that assures reduced sales and lots of overhead. So why would they spite themselves after such benevolent treatment?

But I did rather like the comparison of Winders Ate to Vister. Not that it’s original, which it isn’t but any mud smeared on the Sixth (Fifth?) Reich is a blow for freedom.

Coupled to this is a rather humorous article [Link] about how Winders is losing out to Linux, 2:1. Not that the argument is more than a sieve, like the articles about Linux’s next year on the desktop. With the desktop retrenching to people who actually produce information rather than just consume it, I am happy to be warm, dry, AMUSED!, and comforted by an OS that works well, is a joy to use, and doesn’t try to run my life.

OK, Android is rather a bit of a nag on my so-called smart phone, which isn’t smart except in the sense of pain. But my misgenetic (FOSS for bastard) combination of Ubuntu and KDE is good for me both productively and esthetically. Winders ceased to be either sometime around W2K. And no, I don’t think Linux is whipping Winders so much as MegaHard is self-destructing. But I don;t really care. Linux is like Switzerland, an oasis of sanity in a world of religionist/capitalist fanaticism.

Next, speaking of Switzerland, there is word [Link] of an experiment using a pseudo-hydrogen atom – a combination of a proton and a muon, the latter rather a fat, mentally unstable relative of the electron, to determine the diameter of the proton. I am a bit skeptical of this, mostly because of the muon. A bound proton should have a (slightly) different size than a “free” proton, or for that matter a proton all by itself in the universe. But what stumps me, and evidently everyone else, is why a proton bound to a muon should be smaller than when measured any other way? I am briefly entertaining the fielder’s mitt hypothesis that indicates that the baseball (proton) is a bit smaller as it is held in the fielder’s mitt (muon.) Hokey? Yes. Bad? Not necessarily, since all models are ‘wrong’ in science.

And while we’re on particles, I noted an article [Link] about the particle burst of 774 CE. Seems that Tellus got blasted that year by a burst of particles from a supernova (hypothesis) that caused all sorts of radioactive grrr brrrr. What makes this noteworthy is when it occurred. I searched my memory for what happened that year. Bupkus. hen I consulted a couple of history timetable references and an atlas of world history. More bupkus. About all that I could find in the history books is a mopping up of military action in England by Offa (reflecting how wonderfully well the English do at horribly embarrassing names,) and Charlemagne validating some donation to the Bishop of Rome. IOW, a microcosm of human activity: war; politics; and mysticism.

And lastly, I ran across an article [Link] about NASAl ressurecting old Saturn rocket engines for a test for future use. This grabbed my attention span for a couple of reasons. First of all, one of my coffee acquaintances tells the tale of how when the Yankee government canceled the Saturn program for political reasons, how he scrambled to hide a few of these engines rather than crush them and sell for scrap. What makes this interesting is he cozened the Yankee army into providing the storage facility. So chalk one up for an accidental benefit of the Yankee army. And a triumph over Amerikan political stupidity.

The second is that when these engines were originally being tested they shook Nawth Alibam. I can remember being in band class and the director cutting us off to sit and wiat during the test. All we could hear was the roar and the shaking of windows. Definitely not our off-key, off-time “music”. And we knew the next day all the egg ranchers on Sand Mountain would come down to lay damage claims against NASAl for unlaid eggs.

I think that’s why I have stayed in Alibam. It’s a wonderful place to make big noise, disrupt biology, and foil the depredations of politicians.

[1]  Free and Open Source Test.

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E,I,E,I Oh!

Into week out and things are already dreary. Not weather-wise, that was yesterday. And while we got missed by the ice-rain we didn’t get missed by the water-rain. But the dreary is more a matter of absence than presence. Simply put, the vacuum can be less than entertaining.

On which azimuth, I note some work at U Minnesota on the decision making processes of extroverts and introverts. Unfortunately, the extrovertist predominance managed to omit any results on introverts in the article.[Link] This was one of those psychological studies that has to do with metrics that often escape reason. In this case it had to do with the choice between an immediate and a deferred “reward”. According to the journalism, extroverts prefer immediate rewards. We have to wonder if the opposite is the situation with introverts. But that information got lost?

I have to also wonder if the experiments were poorly posed. Many things that are rewards for extroverts are punishments for introverts, like celebrations or parties. Money also has a different meaning for introverts than for extroverts. Again the privacy versus party thing.

On what may be a more humorous note, a psychology study in Sweden of students of different disciplines found that [Link]

“engineering students cared nothing for other human beings’ feelings and had few of their own.”

The journalism is less clear here. Its language is rather tongue-in-cheek, referring to the study being performed by a trick cyclist using a well-established questionaire. More pertinently, one has to wonder if this is any more than a humor article. After all, it is well documented – at least as well as the questionaire? – that STEMS tend to be introverts and are rather intense in their studies. Introverts express emotion differently than extroverts so the questionnaire may be mis-posed? But we still have this wonder that the whole thing is some sort of hoax? Perhaps perpetuated by some extrovertist organization such as a fraternity? Do the Swedes have fraternities?

Anyway, once more we have indication that introverts are different from extroverts and are persecuted by them.

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