Saturday, May 11, 2013
Image Credit: NASA, ESA, André van der Hoeven
Image Credit & Copyright: Gerald Rhemann
Composition and Processing: Robert Gendler
Image Data: ESO, VISTA, HLA, Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA)
Image Credit & Copyright: Joaquin Polleri & Ezequiel Etcheverry (Observatorio Panameño en San Pedro de Atacama)
Image Credit & Copyright: John Davis
Image Credit: Subaru Telescope (NAOJ), Hubble Space Telescope,
Color data: Wolfgang Promper, Processing: Robert Gendler
ESA/NASA Hubble Space Telescope image
Tuesday, May 7, 2013
thought for the day -
John Romer in his "Byzantium, The Lost Empire: 1. Building the Dream", says the Roman empire didn't just 'fall.' It just got poor, and Byzantium just got rich." The truth is that the Roman empire as I've shown throughout this blog was destroyed by an inner religious war. I'll just quote Saint John Chrysostom again, ""5. And as for the writings of the Greeks, they are all put out and vanished," This is in Saint John Chrsostom's "Homily 2 on the Gospel of John". As I had pointed out in my "Gospel of Truth", religion makes these contradictory vague tactics; I gave examples of God telling Moses that "I am that I am", and I'm forgetting a New testament example.
Mathematics and Mythology share a common property, that of analogy. Back tens of thousands of years ago and even over two to three thousand years ago, mankind took steps to move from vague mythology to precise analogy of mathematics. Many things can take on many different forms. For instance, the the ancients from the Greeks to the Judahites new that water, ice were two different forms for the same thing. Thales tried to understand everything as water. But, also one form can be expressed as by more than one content. This is abstraction; this is one of the major properties of mathematics. What mathematics does above and beyond mythology is structural linkages. Everything has structure. Kind of like a sentence; a sentence has a verb which links elements/nouns together. One could keep the nouns/elements the same and vary the verb/relation and get many different forms for the same content(nouns/elements), or one could keep the verb/relation the same and vary the elements; this is abstraction. In mathematics, we can make relations between abstractions by noting that different abstractions share a common element or a common relation. Numbers can be generated by counting processes; but, what about relations between the numbers? One could add. In counting, one maps from one set to another, and if they are the same, then they are in the same abstract concept/number. Addition is also a mapping; it maps from sets of numbers to another number. It also generalized and makes numbers more precise than they were from counting. This is all well and good, but as mathematical science as opposed to mythological science/magic from the pre-real knowledge of the universe from mathematics progressed, the mythologists didn't like the idea of accepting that their old ideas were wrong. Do I need to bring up Galileo and the creationist debate? What I've shown throughout this blog is that while yes, mythology and art is a great formative stage of mankind, the mythologists seem to believe in their religions for more than truth. And, they'll do anything and resort to evasive vague games to avoid having to learn(learning is the human strength that allows humanity to grow and prosper). The John Romer language technique more or less quoted above is one example of the religious style of thinking.
I should also state that rational intellectuals(as opposed to irrational intellectuals; Christians consider themselves intellectuals) solve their problems by reason, not violence. Now, the irrationalists might resort to evasive language at first, if that doesn't work, they gang up on you and if they can, they'll go to violent means. Do I have to point out the fight between the Christians and muslims, the muslims and the Buddists and Hindus with one another? Much less the fight between mathematics and religion?
Back to these evasive language tactics. The general structure of these mentalities is kind of deal making. There's the famous Pascal's wager, "if you don't believe, and god exists, then when you die, you go to hell." The old testament is practically this whole "Pascal's wager" thousands of years earlier and recasting the whole history of the Judahite region in this light. Now for a kind of list of examples.
James Burke makes a few 'white lie' examples of his own! In episode 2 of his connections, he says, "nobody knows who; fanatical Christians/fanatical Arabs" in respect to who burned down the Library of Alexandria. The truth is both did at different times; both did so for the reason of anti-science and that both didn't want to question their religion. In 'tdtus' episode 3, Mr Burke says that those who painted the walls with Christian scenes did so not because they were stupid; they just had different priorities when splashing paint around." Here we see that people fear pointing out the truth, and to let the poor stupid ones who will strangle you for pointing out they're wrong, they find a evasive vague language technique to kind of slip the truth in easier.
In James Burke's "The Day the Universe Changed", or 'tdtuc' for short, Episode 2, he relates how the Church around 1300 made a deal with everyone playing around with the Aristotle logic recently discovered in the Arab-Spain translations, they said, "o.k. there's two kinds of truth; real world logical truth, and 'revealed truth' that you can only get from the churches interpretation of scripture."
Those who are socially bound up with old mythologies in one way or another will try to marry rational thought with irrational. In 'tdtus' episode two again, Mr Burke shows that Chartres cathedral has a door on the west side, which has Capels's seven liberal arts. One of my favorite art pictures, Rafael's "School of Athens" is actually in the Vatican museum!
When people went to Arab-Spain to translate their works and discover Greek mathematical knowledge, they did so by dressing up and acting like an Arab. The Christian Europeans didn't exactly conquere Andelucia by force. They did so by making deals and getting the Arabs socially bound up. When the Arabs were too weak to fight, the books and great architecture of Andelucia was free for the taking without force. How else is this
all in one piece today?
The Christians did the same thing with the Vikings. The Vikings were a pagan retaliation from the European Christians forcing everyone to their religion. But, they were eventually socially bound up.
The crusades were often about sending off the local competition to some far away land. While the patriotic crusaders were fighting in some distant land, those who stayed in Europe took control of their local lands.
In episode 4 of 'tdtus', Mr Burke notes how when people tried to collect inheritance after the black death, it was in the legal interest to make it all as long and tedious as possible. The church took advantage of the effort to get to heaven by making people pay for 'indulgences.' This is what paid for the Vatican as we see it today!
When Copernicus wrote his book, some monk wrote in the introduction that one should not fear this theory of Copernicus's; understand that this is just some theory.
Christopher Columbus figured out how to deal with people that refuse to think about new ideas and experiment and explore. When someone turns you down(playing vagueness games; refusing to learn), go to someone else. Just when Columbus was about to go to the French, the Spanish changed their minds! This would be episode three of his "The Day the Universe Changed."
I won't link to any more gangland videos; i'll just mention that those videos show that all gangs follow the same pattern of dictatorship and follow our 'ten commandments' or else. Cults equal gangs, and religion is just one big cult/gang.
Friday, May 3, 2013
Image: Andrew Bodrov
I couldn't get the image onto the blog; so, I can only direct you to the website of a hugh picture of Mars. I've changed picture for this post because of my pointing out the great new video series of Australia. I can't help noticing that Australia like Mars is red!
quote for the day
"5. And as for the writings of the Greeks, they are all put out and vanished, but this man's shine brighter day by day. For from the time that he (was) and the other fishermen, since then the (doctrines) of Pythagoras and of Plato, which seemed before to prevail, have ceased to be spoken of, and most men do not know them even by name." - Saint John Chrysostom link, Saint John Chrysostom anti-science quote finally found! Will I have to re-edit my "Gospel of Truth" again? No, not really, this and much else of the same time period of Saint John Chrysostom comes after all that I show in that wright-up. Like I said at the end of my "Gospel of Truth", there's plenty more to say!
Life is interesting because much of the universe appears to be non-life. Intelligent life is interesting because it seems to be able to understand this universe - both the life and non-life portions. Or at least, intelligent life can learn something. It can engineer both the life and non-life for its own purposes. Intelligent life on this planet seems to have only made a real understanding of the universe in its main outlines just the last century. So, it makes sense to fight irrationality; this is what this blog does.
Few people today seem to try and see this whole scientific view. The scarcity of good science videos is evidence enough for that. Let's see, there's Jacob Bronowski's "Ascent of Man", Carl Sagan's "Cosmos", James Burke's "Connections", and "The Day the Universe Changed", the "Mechanical Universe", i'd add John Romer's "Testament" for a scientific understanding of the Bible(there's also been Silverman and Israel Finkelstein's "The Bible Unearthed" made into a video which I have), and maybe a few other things like "The Minotaur's Island" by Bettany Hughes. But, for the most part, those are it. I showed the Planet Earth; the original Planet Earth before the recent more great photography(and it is good photography) kindof hid it from public view. I mean this Planet Earth, The real, original Planet Earth video series . I should link link Bettany Hughes Minotaur Island as well since it doesn't seem to me that I had shown this video. Bettany Hughes "The Minotaur's Island" . There's been some stuff on life on Earth that perhaps I havn't viewed. There's a famous Attenborogh who appears to have made a "Life" video. I havn't checked it out. But, I have recently found a new pretty good science video on life in general. This one is shown through the history of Australia. It shows that Australia can show the history of life throughout Earth's history.
Only two of the four episodes are up on youtube right now. I'll link to the second here, Nova Life Explodes Australia's First Four Billion Years
I was a little bit disappointed by the third episode about dinosaurs; as it turns out, finding Dinosaur fossils in Australia was kindof hard as said in the episode. So, they're still working out that history of Australia. With that consideration, the third episode isn't so bad. This video series doesn't address self-organization from chemical reactions to life or Gaia theory and symbiosis which is even better established. So that is also a little disappointing for this video series. Still, for the most part, this is a pretty good science video about what we know scientifically about the history of life on Earth.
There's been biologists who have tried to infer what philosophy of science and you could say scientific humanism in Richard Dawkins; but, I havn't gotten around to reading his famous "The Selfish gene." I'm tempted to more and more I suppose.
------------------------------------crazy science/technology for the day
I suppose I don't have any new dna-nanotech for today, but maybe more appropriately is this,
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
Image Credit & Copyright: John Davis
quote for the day------------------------------------
"To develop a complete mind:
Study the science of art;
Study the art of science.
Learn how to see.
Realize that everything
... connects to everything else." - Leonardo da Vinci
Not much thought for the day from me. But, in connection with my pointing out Gelfond's representation theory, I found this recently.
and i'll link to the other one here,
Asymptotics of number fields (Part 2)
Maybe I havn't seen enough lectures, but this lecture seems unusually clear. Even if you're not a mathematician, I think one should view this and see the real exciting mathematics.
As I remarked about Hermann Weyl reopening the invariance theory field after David Hilbert's famous finite basis theorem, so likewise, this guy might be making an area of mathematics that seemed more of a curiosity or dead end in octonians. He also points out at least that his work has applications to (non) commutative algebras. In algebra there was two ways of generalizing; one way led to invariance theory, the other to Galois theory and abstract algebra in general. Emmy Noether in the early 1900s combined both and generalized both. But, then came Lie theory of Hermann Weyl again, and lots of mathematicians for a long time have often said that today, Lie algebra replaces all that algebra in importance. I'd like to note that like the way the Calculus unifies, generalizes much of algebra, geometry, trigonometry, logarithms that mathematicians struggled with before the Calculus, Lie theory does likewise with Abstract algebra in general. Well, here you can see some of the exciting frontiers of mathematics.
----------------------------crazy science/technology for the day
There's a whole bunch,
protein origami , Paul Rothemund is famous for making dna-origami approach to dna-nanotechnology. Now, we have protein origami. Protein origami could allow for harder molecular machine parts and the ability to make arbitrary chemical reactions. If you know enough about nano-manufacturing, you should get excited about this. Dna-nanotech can still be used as a scaffold for these things.
Monday, April 29, 2013
Copyright: ESA/Herschel/PACS, SPIRE/N. Schneider, Ph. André, V. Könyves (CEA Saclay, France) for the 'Gould Belt survey' Key Programme
Quote for the day
"Science, is one of the few areas of human life in which the majority does not rule." - Samuel Ting
There's this famous Star Trek saying, "the needs of the many outweight the needs of the few." Well, this is very anti-minority isn't it?! Of course, one could turn this around and say we can't have the few controlling the masses. But, the minority thing again throws some hot water on this general concept. I'm tempted to argue that the problem here is what are the facts, and what is the logic? I'll leave this train of thought as it stands. I'll say maybe this is a problem that society is still very blind to. Let me bring up one more issue I keep trying to point out to various people only to be met with silence and refusal to think; the problem with the majority is incrowding and refusal to think of new ideas. This is where I come to the support of the minority and where Mr Ting's quote is quite correct and I'll stand by that much for now.
I'll leave with another great mathematics lecture I've been watching and rewatching recently.
John Milnor: Spheres
I couldn't get the video to show up for the embedding. There's so much to say about this. I'm struck by the possibility that maybe Mr Milnor's work could lead to understanding the place of fractals in mathematics - as oppossed to merely being a curiosity. Milnor notes that one has to define Henri Poincare's definition of the problem. This is of course just one example of how mathematics is about defining where things were vague at first.
Thursday, April 25, 2013
Credit: ESO/F. Comeron
thought for the day,
Particle physicists infered that protons decay in the 1970s. Some were alarmed; others not so much. Most scientists of that time had learned psychologicaly, that the universe may have some disturbing consequences, like stars explode and the sun will burn out. Or, that the Earth is not the center of the universe and that it is a sphere and not a plane.
In some sense, religion was created to avoid uncomfortable facts. The Mesopotamian Epic of Gilbamesh is about immortality and so is Egyptian religion and the idea of Heaven in general. Mathematical science faces facts directly. Religion sweeps facts under the rug. I'm wondering if the fact that humanity is a science and technologicaly dependent species is an uncomfortable fact? Google "scientific humanism" or "humans are the science and technologicaly dependent species" and you get next to nothing. This is a fact that should be obvious. The fact that mathematics is the unified view of things is perhaps harder. One has to do some reading and thinking and rethinking. This is kindof what this blog is for!
Quote for the day
"the most successfull programs of unification always came about when there was some urgent question to be answered. In most cases, the urgent question was that something seemed to be wrong in the present understanding, and the correct answer then turned out to be that the only way to get it right was to say that this effect and that effect cancel, and the only way to make them cancel was to put them into one big theory together and show that they were the same force." - Gerard't Hooft
Friday, April 19, 2013
Credit: NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (AURA/STScI)
-------------------------------------crazy science/tech for the day!
electronic control of dna (un) zipping
One of the major criticisms of dna-nanotech is the use of temperature controls to get the dna to fold in the right way. The major advances have been to conquer this thermodynamics over the last year or so; still, it would be nice to move beyond having to use thermodynamics. It will be interesting to see if the above electronic control of dna (un) zipping will generalise to all the great dna-nanotech advances like dna origami and other great things they've made dna-nanotechnology. If anything, this electronic control can add mechanical control to all the dna-nanotechnologies we already have.