Category Archives: semantics


To arrive at the simplest truth, as Newton knew and practiced, requires years of contemplation. Not activity. Not reasoning. Not calculating. Not busy behaviour of any kind. Not reading. Not talking. Not making an effort. Not thinking. Simply bearing in mind what it is one needs to know. And yet those with the courage to […]

Turbulent Waters

In this video clip, Benoit Mandelbrot explains how Kolmogorov inspired his works on fluid turbulence, published in the years immediately before he coined the term “fractal”. I had the pleasure of seeing Mandelbrot in person when he visited Microsoft, and he described his lifelong fascination with things chaotic. One of the great accomplishments of complexity […]

Only The Moon Answers

This is from my copy of LeRoi Jones’s “Preface to a Twenty Volume Suicide Note”. All apparent spelling errors and unmatched parenthesis are deliberate. This is a perfect transliteration, and is meant to be exactly as you see it. ~ (For Kellie Jones, born 16 May 1959) Lately, I’ve become accustomed to the way The […]

Murderous Elephant Sophonts

Gregor links two news articles I also noticed.  The most recent says that Elephants pass the test of self-awareness, like apes, dolphins, and man.  The other is about maurauding bands of violent orphan elephants.  The journalist cited in NYT draws a parallel between human war orphans.  The theory is that elephants actually learn civil behavior […]

Don’t Erase

So, I recently finished Dunbar’s “Grooming, Gossip, and the Evolution of Language”.  Although I am not convinced about Nostratic, Dunbar gave more than enough material to convince me I was right about past/future tenses in Chinese and English.  I think it is pretty obvious, and was probably common sense to people with access to Alexandria library. […]

Is Your Car Spying on You? Is Your Car Spying on Me?

Another nail in the coffin of Doctorow’s “metacrap” arguments.  I never want to see anyone citing that inanity again.  Doctorow said that metadata would fail because “people are lazy”, and “people lie”.  The fact is, privacy is dead, because people are too lazy to STOP their metadata from leaking, and too lazy to lie/cover their tracks.  And […]

Everybody Knows (Without Your Clothes)

I vividly remember the first time I lied.  I was 4 years old.  Very soon after, I deceived for the fist time.  Two days after my first deception, my mother suspected the first deceit and tested me on it.  She tested me in a deceitful way; asking the question in a way as not to raise suspicion.  […]

Talking Signs Seattle!

Congratulations to Seattle for winning the Federal DOT Grant for Remote Infrared Audio Signage!  This means that various real-world places around Seattle are going to be annotated with identifiers which can be directionally detected. This should be interesting to Virtual Earth people, Wikimapia, and anyone interested in tacking metadata to real-world locations. Talking signs address […]

Burn the Books

So, as I predicted when I booted all of my subscribers and converted this blog without copying old posts, my Google PageRank has plummeted (to 3).  I have actually brought back most of the old posts, but the URL format is a bit different (although the file at exists on the filesystem, WordPress returns a […]

Idea Slaves

Aaron Clauset has a rambling post attempting to contrast science favorably with non-science.  The key defining difference is easy to sum up; science seeks to disconfirm.  The rest of his post talks about things that are shared by science and non-science alike. He does quote a useful little statement, which can be applied to the […]