Thermodynamics is a “phenomenal” science. That means that its variables range over macroscopic parameters such as temperature, pressure and volume. These are properties that hold at equilibrium, i.e., when the values of the macroscopic variables remain approximately stable. Whether the microphysics underlying these variables are motive atoms in the void or an imponderable fluid is largely irrelevant to this science. The developers of the theory both prided themselves on this fact and at the same time worried about it. Clausius, for instance, was one of the first to speculate that heat consisted solely of the motion of particles (without an ether), for it made the equivalence of heat with mechanical work less surprising. However, as was common, he kept his “ontological” beliefs separate from his official statement of the principles of thermodynamics because he didn’t wish to (in his words) “taint” the latter with the speculative character of the former.

The past only exists in our memory, therefore in some sense we can't recall incorrectly.

A metronome ticking at a rate of two or three times a second is perceived as an integral sequence, as a rhythm. When the ticks are less frequent, though, say at intervals of three seconds, the sounds appears to be no longer perceived as a sequence in the same way, and each sound impulse remains an isolated perceptual event. Similar results occur with slowed down speech or music: music or spoken sentences are only recognizable as such when their rhythmic patterns and phrases are presented at an optimal speed that allow them to be recognized as a perceptual unity.

Cognitive processes ain't (all) in the head!


The philosopher, having no open truck with skin, leaps from essence to essence — from the essential knower to the essentially known. He leaps with never so much as the twitch of an eye-lash to mark that he glimpses anything of significance lying in between. Yet it is simple to show that skin — and indeed skin in its primitive anatomical character — dominates every position the philosopher occupies and every decision he makes.

If I should ask you whether the nest of a bird constituted a part of the organism or a part of its environment, I presume that everyone present would resent the question as an insult to his intelligence. [...] The situation becomes somewhat less clear, perhaps, when we consider the calcareous tube of a marine annelid. Here is something which is definitely secreted by the epidermal cells of the organism, and which forms a sort of permanent integument. It does not, however, in this case retain any organic connection with the body of the worm. But when we pass to the shell of the mollusc we find that there is such an organic connection with the body, so that the animal cannot be dislodged without extensive injury to its living tissues. [...] Does such a shell belong to the organism or its environment?

Or are they us?

Let us ask, together with him, a series of simple questions, such as: what is our relationship to our clothes — is it to mere external objects forced upon us by tedious cultural traditions to cover our shameful nakedness? Or do we instead treat them as important parts of ourselves, so that we would rather prefer to have elegant looks in nice clothes, rather than a beautiful body dressed in rags? Or having accomplished something with our own hands and spent a lot of effort on it, pouring all of our skill and energy into it, what would we feel if we were to suddenly lose it? Will we be emotionless and calm, because, after all, nothing part of ourselves was lost? Or will we perhaps feel our very selves shrink and pale, as if a part of ourselves was lost or destroyed? Already these simple questions indicate that the extent of our material body does not coincide with our feelings of what we are as subjects, as selves, as psychic beings. Furthermore: what about our bodies — "are they simply ours, or are they us?"


The program disk is an unavoidable necessity as, if you use the current rules for calculating the date of Easter, a full cycle of Easter dates only repeats itself once every 5,700,000 years.


If something sounds like pop music it’s the sound of a genre being exasperated.

You could literally never show your work to anyone. You could embrace chaos and illegibility, creating visual or written work that is non-instrumentalizable, but legible across many parts over a longer period of time. This might mean making work that operates at a different tempo than that of branding and social media, work that occupies multiple sites and forms, work that fights for the complexity of identity (as artist or otherwise) and form, and believes in a creaturely capacity for patience with a maximum dedication to understanding.

The Wall Itself

What I’ve done is say that actually, a better way of thinking about color is not as a property of objects, but as a property of interactions that perceivers have with objects. In my view, which is the view I call color adverbialism, there are perceptual processes that are going on all the time. Every time we look around a room, light’s bouncing off the walls into my eyes and my brain’s processing this information and I’m saying that that whole extended interaction between myself and my surroundings, that’s the thing that has color, not the objects that I see. So when I talk about what’s there in my surroundings, I say that color is my way of seeing those things, so I see that wall in a white way, so really the whiteness is modifying that perceptual experience. It’s more a property of the experience or that process, that activity I’m doing, rather than the wall itself.


All that is alive merely evaporates.


The unthought would have to make your machines uncomfortable, the uninscribed that remains to be inscribed would have to make their memory suffer. Do you see what I mean? Otherwise why would they ever start thinking? We need machines that suffer from the burden of their memory.


Organisms are inherently far from thermodynamic equilibrium; to go to equilibrium is to die.


New substances cannot emerge. Only combinations or organizations are possible

Brown and Bitter

Our perception should be described in terms of adverbial modifications of the various verbs characteristic of perception, rather than in terms of objects to which our perceptual acts are directed. As I sip my drink, I see brownly and smell bitterly; I do not attend to brown and bitter objects, the inner analogues of the properties of the cheap coffee below my nose.


But with Acronym later, and the size of production that we used to do, black was the only color that all of the suppliers would have on stock, and that you could order and expect to look sort of okay. That’s why everything is black.


There is no art of historical analysis; there is no art of biography. There is legend and antiquarian romance, but no real history. There are only annals, lists of rulers, chronicles of events.


The fact that the smartphone makes cyberspace available practically anywhere at anytime means that boredom (or at least the old style, ‘Fordist’ boredom) has effectively been eliminated from social life. Yet boredom, like death, posed existential challenges that are far more easily deferred in the always-on cyberspatial environment. Ultimately, communicative capitalism does not vanquish boredom so much as it “sublates” it, seeming to destroy it only to preserve it in a new synthesis. The characteristic affective tonality for the insomniac drift of cyberspace, in which there is always one more click to make, one more update to check, combines fascination with boredom. We are bored even as we are fascinated, and the limitless distraction allows us to evade confronting death – even as death is closing in on us.


Isn't anything that comes from the place of authority a priori boring?

Boring; Interesting

On this account, 'boring' is not opposed to 'interesting'. To be bored simply means to be removed from the communicative sensation-stimulus matrix of texting, MTV and fast food, to be denied, for a moment, the constant flow of sugary gratification on demand. Some students want Nietzsche in the same way that they want a hamburger; they fail to grasp — and the logic of the consumer system encourages this misapprehension — that the indigestibility, the difficulty is Nietzsche.


Until I die there will be sounds. And they will continue following my death. One need not fear about the future of music.

Romantic Originality

The concept of the genius, or artist who was able to produce his own original work through this process of creation from nothingness, is key to Romanticism, and to be derivative was the worst sin. This idea is often called "romantic originality."

Hardly Human

Blue is the typical heavenly colour. The ultimate feeling it creates is one of rest. When it sinks almost to black, it echoes a grief that is hardly human.

The List

The list, Gass tells us, is a basic literary gambit: "It occurs constantly, and only occasionally draws attention to itself." It is an essentially democratic mode, levelling its elements however disparate to a single plane or stratum, and laconically implying some absent linking verb: buy, invite, remember. Pursued at length, however, such modesty flips or flowers into syntactic extravagance – "The list is the fundamental rhetorical form for creating a sense of abundance, overflow, excess." In sum, lists tend to get out of hand.


Understanding is compression! A theory as complicated as the data it explains is NO theory!

A matter dark indeed

For a long time I used to go to bed early. Sometimes, when I had put out my candle, my eyes would close so quickly that I had not even time to say “I’m going to sleep.” And half an hour later the thought that it was time to go to sleep would awaken me; I would try to put away the book which, I imagined, was still in my hands, and to blow out the light; I had been thinking all the time, while I was asleep, of what I had just been reading, but my thoughts had run into a channel of their own, until I myself seemed actually to have become the subject of my book: a church, a quartet, the rivalry between François I and Charles V. This impression would persist for some moments after I was awake; it did not disturb my mind, but it lay like scales upon my eyes and prevented them from registering the fact that the candle was no longer burning. Then it would begin to seem unintelligible, as the thoughts of a former existence must be to a reincarnate spirit; the subject of my book would separate itself from me, leaving me free to choose whether I would form part of it or no; and at the same time my sight would return and I would be astonished to find myself in a state of darkness, pleasant and restful enough for the eyes, and even more, perhaps, for my mind, to which it appeared incomprehensible, without a cause, a matter dark indeed.

Vision Chart



There is nothing more to say—except why. But since *why* is difficult to handle, one must take refuge in *how*.

What is a ghost?

What is a ghost? A tragedy condemned to repeat itself time and again? An instant of pain, perhaps. Something dead which still seems to be alive. An emotion suspended in time. Like a blurred photograph. Like an insect trapped in amber.

Natural Language

An alleged experiment carried out by Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II in the 13th century saw young infants raised without human interaction in an attempt to determine if there was a natural language that they might demonstrate once their voices matured. It is claimed he was seeking to discover what language would have been imparted unto Adam and Eve by God.

The Eye Assumes

The eye always assumes that it exists in a neutral color space. Therefore, you need to establish a correspondence between the neutral reference of the eye and a specific light temperature. One way to do this in an analog situation is to use identical fixtures and bulbs with an equivalent Kelvin value. You can then use this value as a standard against which to kick light in a specific direction—either warmer or cooler.

Sending this message was important to us

This place is not a place of honor. No highly esteemed deed is commemorated here. Nothing valued is here. This place is a message and part of a system of messages. Pay attention to it! Sending this message was important to us. We considered ourselves to be a powerful culture.

The moment when

Context collapse is the moment when one realises that ‘talking to everyone is the same as talking to no-one.’

Wax Impressions

Mind is still approached from within a substance and structure framework of background presuppositions. [...] Perceptual representations are construed, for example, as consisting of transduced encodings of the light in the retina, but this process of “transduction”, and how it could yield normative representations, is just as mysterious in this technologically updated version of wax impressions as it was in the original. The account, that is, is still caught in the strictly
factual, and cannot account for normativity.


Mispronunciation is known to be one of the most common causes of misspelling. Hence, phonetic misspelling is common, once a word is mispronounced; for example, the word "realize" may be misspelled as "relize".


Apparent identities such as “X” are composed of endless series of differences, where “X” = “the difference between x and x’”, and “x” = “the difference between…”, and so forth. Difference goes all the way down. To confront reality honestly, Deleuze claims, we must grasp beings exactly as they are, and concepts of identity (forms, categories, resemblances, unities of apperception, predicates, etc.) fail to attain difference in itself.


There is no behavior. When you get hit by lightning, who's behaving?

Divine handywork

“Making” is always a compromised, ambiguous affair.


We make a star as we make a constellation, by putting its parts together and marking off its boundaries. In short, we do not make stars as we make bricks; not all making is a matter of molding mud. The worldmaking mainly in question here is making not with hands but with minds, or rather with languages or other symbol systems. Yet when I say that worlds are made, I mean it literally [...].


Briefly, phonemic strings consist of phonemes, language-dependent speech units that characterize linguistically significant differences in the language; loosely, phonemes represent all the sounds needed to distinguish one word from another in a given language. On the other hand, phonetic strings consist of phones, speech units that characterize the manner (puff of air, click, vocalized, etc.) and place (front, middle, back, etc.) of articulation within the human vocal tract and are thus independent of language; phones represent realized distinctions in human speech production.

Meaning happens

I think it’s interesting, this moment where you evade meaning, or allow meaning to be more elusive. Then
maybe some meaning happens, but you don’t know what’s going to happen with it.

Language after Auschwitz

Celan said of language after Auschwitz that: Only one thing remained reachable, close and secure amid all losses: language. Yes, language. In spite of everything, it remained secure against loss. But it had to go through its own lack of answers, through terrifying silence, through the thousand darknesses of murderous speech. It went through. It gave me no words for what was happening, but went through it. Went through and could resurface, 'enriched' by it all.


[...] that among voices, some are articulate and capable of being written [engrammatoi], like ours. Others, such as the crackling of fire and the din of stone and wood, are inarticulate and cannot be written. Others still, such as imitations of irrational animals, like brekekeks and koi, are inarticulate and yet can be written; these voices are inarticulate, since we do not know what they mean, but they are engrammatoi, since they can be written.

A work

To open language up to 'materiality,' to make of it a 'work,' is 'immediately to make oneself a stranger to language.'


"There are four tongues worthy of the world’s use", says the Talmud: “Greek for song, Latin for war, Syriac for lamentation, and Hebrew for ordinary speech.” Other authorities have been no less decided in their judgment on what different languages are good for. The Holy Roman Emperor Charles V, King of Spain, Archduke of Austria, and master of several European tongues, professed to speaking “Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men, and German to my horse.”

The book as time machine?

Yes. Mercury Station, my second book, explicitly explores that. I don’t want to get all sentimental about the loss of the book, but it’s a really great creator of history because once it’s published you can—I don’t know if that’s changing already—trust that it was published in this year or that. You can bring it to a lab, and they would say, “OK, this is ten years old,” or that this is an authentic artifact of a particular time. When you see a digital book or read something online, you know that any asshole could have changed any word yesterday. You have no idea what time it is. I’ve managed some blogs, and I’ve changed dates too. Venusia deals with a world where they’ve forgotten how to read and have no history; they’re completely manipulated. When someone happens to find a book of Venusian history, and learns how to read it, it creates a total revolution.

A minute longer than an hour

There was a fascinating bug in older versions of KVM on CentOS. Specifically, a KVM virtual machine had no awareness that it was not running on physical hardware. This meant that if the host OS put the VM into a suspended state, the virtualized system clock would retain the time that it had had when it was suspended. E.g. if the VM was suspended at 13:00 and then brought back to an active state two hours later (at 15:00), the system clock on the VM would still reflect a local time of 13:00. The result was that every time a KVM VM went idle, the host OS would put it into a suspended state and the VM’s system clock would start to drift away from reality, sometimes by a large margin depending on how long the VM had remained idle.


The red surface of an apple does not look like a matrix of molecules reflecting photons at certain critical wavelengths, but that is what it is. The sound of a flute does not sound like a sinusoidal compression wave train in the atmosphere, but that is what it is. The warmth of the summer air does not feel like the mean kinetic energy of millions of tiny molecules, but that is what it is.


Does anyone know where avada kedavra came from? It is an ancient spell in Aramaic, and it is the original of abracadabra, which means 'let the thing be destroyed.' Originally, it was used to cure illness and the 'thing' was the illness, but I decided to make it the 'thing' as in the person standing in front of me. I take a lot of liberties with things like that. I twist them round and make them mine.


In a profane age, the profane must be taken unawares and in their own tongue.


When we stare, barely seeing, into the screen, haven't we entered a "lost" body-dimension of abstract orientation not so terribly different from the one we go to when we roll up our eyes and find ourselves in the fold?


Until then I had thought each book spoke of the things, human or divine, that lie outside of books. Now I realized that not infrequently books speak of books: it is as if they spoke amongst themselves. In the light of this reflection, the library seemed all the more disturbing to me. It was then the place of a long, centuries-old murmuring, an imperceptible dialogue between one parchment and another, a living thing, a receptacle of powers not to be ruled by a human mind, a treasure of secrets emanated by many minds, surviving the death of those who had produced them or had been their conveyors.


A calendar is a tool which cannot be justified by either logic or astronomy.


It is an intriguing and ineluctable paradox of globalized modernity that its approximation to universality remains fundamentally structured by ethnogeographical peculiarities of a distinctly pre-modern type. The world was not integrated by togetherness, but by a succession of particular powers, with their characteristic traits, legacies, and parochialisms. For better or for worse, these peculiar features have been deeply installed in the governing order of the world. Their signs should be meticulously conserved and studied rather than clumsily effaced, because they are critical clues to the real nature of fate.


Time must never be thought of as pre-existing in any sense; it is a manufactured quantity.


Orientation seems to be to the East, in the direction of the rising sun, with the result that the terms kedem, saphon and negev became generalized with "facing", "left" and "right" side of anything.


Notoriety in post-Internet pop culture comes from either persistent productivity, or commitment to a level of visibility that generates interest—even in the absence of creative output.

What if knowledge were a means to deepen unknowing?

The great educational value of the war against Christendom lies in the absolute truthlessness of the priest. Such purity is rare enough. The "man of God" is entirely incapable of honesty, and only arises at the point where truth is defaced beyond all legibility. Lies are his entire metabolism, the air he breathes, his bread and his wine. He cannot comment upon the weather without a secret agenda of deceit. No word, gesture, or perception is slight enough to escape his extravagant reflex of falsification, and of the lies in circulation he will instinctively seize on the grossest, the most obscene and oppressive travesty. Any proposition passing the lips of a priest is necessarily totally false, excepting only insidiouses whose message is momentarily misunderstood. It is impossible to deny him without discovering some buried fragment or reality. There is no truth that is not war against theology, and even the word "truth" has been plastered by the spittle of priestcraft. It cannot be attachment to some alternative conviction that cuts here, but only relentless refusal of what has been told. The dangerous infidels bypass dialectics. It is the sceptic who assassinates the lie. Whenever its name has been anything but a jest, philosophy has been haunted by a subterranean question: What if knowledge were a means to deepen unknowing? It is this thought alone that has differentiated it from the shallow things of the earth.

In the obscurity of the night

The earliest reference to a magnetic device used as a "direction finder" is in a Song Dynasty book dated to 1040-1044. Here there is a description of an iron "south-pointing fish" floating in a bowl of water, aligning itself to the south. The device is recommended as a means of orientation "in the obscurity of the night."

Directional precision in language (and gesture)

One complication to the simplicity of pointing may be the demand for directional accuracy. People in many different societies, speaking such languages as Warlpiri and GY in Aboriginal Australia, Austronesian languages like Malagasy, and American Indian languages like Wintu, and Tzeltal, are reported to keep careful track of cardinal directions, recorded in locational expressions in speech. The linguistic details vary, but frequently people use lexical roots for cardinal directions to describe things and events as points or vectors in the appropriate divisions of the horizontal plane.


Blindness is a confinement, but it is also a liberation, a solitude propitious to invention, a key and an algebra.


A writer can conceive a fable without grasping its moral.

Primordial Blackmail

[...] workers are obliged to accept this primordial blackmail: work as much as possible or die.

DOM Space

DOM space is the set of all web pages that you can express in HTML


Whenever its name has been anything but a jest, philosophy has been haunted by a subterranean question: What if knowledge were a means to deepen unknowing?

Catherine of Sienna

When they realized they would not be able to smuggle the whole body past the guards in Rome, they took only her head, hidden in a paper bag. Unfortunately, they were stopped by the guards anyway. The thieves prayed to Catherine to protect them, and when the guards looked in the bag, they saw not the small withered head of the saint, but hundreds of rose petals.

Mystical Rose

The Virgin may suitably be called a blooming rose. Just as the gentle rose is placed among thorns, So this gentle Virgin was surrounded by sorrow.


Whatever their sources of information—whether Chevreul, or Charles Blanc, or Rood, Helmholtz, or even Goethe—painters had to confront a particular fact: the physiological screen through which light passes to the human brain is not transparent, like a window pane; it is, like a filter, involved in a set of specific distortions. For us, as human perceivers, there is an unbreachable gulf between "real" color and "seen" color. We may be able to measure the first; but we can only experience the second. And this is because, among other things, color is always involved in interaction-one color reading onto and affecting its neighbor. Even if we are only looking at a single color, there is still interaction, because the retinal excitation of the afterimage will superimpose on the first chromatic stimulus that of a second, which is its complementary. The whole issue of complementary colors, along with the whole edifice of color harmonics that painters constructed on its basis, was thus a matter of physiological optics.

An interesting feature of treatises written on physiological optics is that they were illustrated with grids. Because it was a matter of demonstrating the interaction of specific particles throughout a continuous field, that field was analyzed into the modular and repetitive structure of the grid. So for the artist who wished to enlarge his understanding of vision in the direction of science, the grid was there as a matrix of knowledge. By its very abstraction, the grid conveyed one of the basic laws of knowledge-the separation of the perceptual screen from that of the "real" world. Given all of this, it is not surprising that the grid-as an emblem of the infrastructure of vision-should become an increasingly insistent and visible feature of neo-impressionist painting, as Seurat, Signac, Cross, and Luce applied themselves to the lessons of physiological optics. Just as it is not surprising that the more they applied these lessons, the more "abstract" their art became, so that as the critic Felix Feneon observed of the work of Seurat, science began to yield its opposite, which is symbolism.

The Wall and The Books

The tenacious wall that in this moment, and in all moments, projects its system of shadows across lands I will not see, is the shadow of a Caesar who ordered that the most reverent of nations burn its past; it is likely that the idea itself touches us by, over and above, the conjectures it allows. (Its virtue can be in the opposition to building and destroying, on an enormous scale.) Generalizing the earlier matter, we could infer that all practices have their virtue in themselves and not in some conjectural “content.” This would be in agreement with the thesis of Benedetto Croce; as already Pater, in 1877, contended that all the arts aspire to the condition of music, which is nothing but form. Music, state of happiness, mythology, faces shaped by time, certain twilights and certain places, try to tell us something, or they told us something that we should not have lost, or want to tell us something; this imminence of a revelation, which does not happen, is, perhaps, the aesthetic act.


There is no human being on earth who is capable of declaring who he is. No one knows what he has come to this world to do, to what his acts, feelings, ideas correspond, or what his real name is, his imperishable Name in the registry of Light…. History is an immense liturgical text, where the i’s and the periods are not worth less than the versicles or whole chapters, but the importance of both is undeterminable and is profoundly hidden.

A Tongue

[...] that language persists in the disappearance of its speaker, that the tongue remains, like the "blackened" surface of "white paper," to bear witness to the vanishing of that which it would seem to represent. [...] What we call a "language," one might conclude, is nothing other than that: a being which outlasts itself.

All language is combination

Saussure interprets classical poetry as an art of *combination*, whose developed structures are tributaries of simple elements, fundamentals which are required by the rules of the game to be both conserved and transformed. Only it happens that all language is combination, even without the intervention of an explicit intention to practice combination as art. Decipherers, whether they be cabalists or phoneticists, have a free range: a reading which is symbolic or numeric or systematically attentive to a partial aspect can always bring to light a latent depth, a hidden secret, a language within the language. And if there is no cipher? The constant attraction of the secret, of anticipated discovery, of steps astray in the labyrinth of exegesis—all these would remain.

Certainly facts

What we have been discussing are certainly facts, but within the total structure of the text these facts have been actively isolated. All other aspects are no less actively neglected. The margin between the choice which *isolates* a fact and that which *constructs* one is narrow. The objection raised here is not concerned with the arbitrary character of the question to which the text is subjected: all questions are arbitrary, and the "science" which seems most "objective" assumes at its source an observer's question or untrammeled curiosity.

Entoptic phonemes

Do we not have here a phenomenon analogous to the projection of an entoptic image, which we find on every object we look at? Are there not dispersed phonemes everywhere, available for arrangement in significant combinations?


or type of anagram to be recognized
in ancient literatures.
Its role in Latin poetry and prose.


Language is only created with a view to discourse, but what separates discourse from language? What allows one to assert at a given moment that language has *become active as discourse?*

Various concepts are present in language (that is, clothed in linguistic form) such as *beef, lake, sky, red, sad, five, to split, to see*. At what moment, and by virtue of what operation, what interplay between them, what conditions, do these concepts form *discourse?*

*But what is language separated from discourse? Is language the basis of discourse, or is this basis to be found, rather, in some antecedent discourse? Language, the simple repertory of isolated concepts separated from discourse (words), is an abstraction.*

Techniques of the Observer

Blood flood your eye, fuck up your optics

Pre-Digital + Collection Digital + Space

Similarly to other color standards of the pre-digital era, such as RAL colour standard or British Standard 4800, the Federal Standard 595 is a color collection rather than color space.

Another scene

Another scene, not famous, not potent, requiring to be searched for.


Sister, time, it be time, ya know wha mean? Dread.

Market Direction

Sideways bias up

Systems as need-satisfying

Round our needs—our weal or woe, Trains of thought luxuriant grow.

Ethical Truths

But in contemporary insurrections there is something that especially unsettles the revolutionaries: the insurrections no longer base themselves on political ideologies, but on *ethical truths*. Here we have two words that, to a modern sensibility, sound like an oxymoron when they’re brought together. Establishing what is true is the role of science, is it not?—science having nothing to do with the moral norms and other contingent values. For moderns, there is the World on one side, themselves on the other, and language to bridge the gulf. A truth, we were taught, is a solid point above the abyss—a statement that adequately *describes* the World. We’ve conveniently forgotten the slow apprenticeship during which we acquired together with language, a relationship with the world. Far from serving to describe the world, language helps us rather to *construct* a world. Ethical truths are thus not truths about the world, but truths on the basis of which we dwell therein. These are truths, affirmations, stated or not, that are felt but not proved. […] Truths are what *bind* us, to ourselves, to the world around us, and to each other. They give us entry into an immediately shared life, an undetached existence, regardless of the illusory walls of our Selves.

Cold / Hot

Paintings that look good when cold / Paintings that look good when hot


Life is but a gamble! Let flipism chart your ramble!


Knew that we ventured on such dangerous seas; That if we wrought out life 'twas ten to one

Near / Far

Paintings that look good from afar / Paintings that look good up close

Robin Mackay

One can't completely determine what this entity was or is [...] I ask you to allow me the liberty to make something of it that I need now.


His dreams were chaotic, but there was one constant: the ghostly countdown, suspended in midair. Even before he fell asleep, he had known he would dream of it. In his dreams, he attacked the countdown. Crazed, he tore at it, bit it, but every attempt failed to leave a mark. It continued to hang in the middle of his dream, steadily ticking away. Finally, just as the frustration became almost intolerable, he woke up. [...] Opening his eyes, he saw the ceiling, indistinct above him. The city lights outside the window cast a dim glow against it thougrough the curtains. But one thing did follow him from dream into reality: the countdown. It was still hovering before his eyes. The numbers were thin, but very bright with a burning, white glow.


Sarcasm transforms the polarity of an apparently positive or negative utterance into its opposite.


I can swim just like the others. Only I have a better memory than the others. I have not forgotten the former inability to swim. But since I have not forgotten it, being able to swim is of no help to me; and so, after all, I cannot swim.


Blow east, blow west, he steers his course alike

Piet Hein

I’d like to know - what this whole show - is all about - before it’s out

A Question

What's different now?

Epistemology of Search

[...] the “epistemology of search,” where knowledge is produced by discovering and/or constructing meaningful patterns—formats—from vast reserves of raw data, [...]. Under these conditions, any quantum of data might lend itself to several, possibly contradictory, formats.

correspondence of sizes

dialectic of liberation and composition


[...] The one-sidedness of opacity


That’s the great struggle, for more access and more expressiveness, isn’t it?

Loose Ends

Well, last spring one of my [vacuum-formed] bomber jackets (2005) was bought by MoMA. That piece was supposed to be an iconic image, but then when it’s actually on the walls of MoMA—I don’t know, it’s a shock to feel that your odd loose ends are being tied up. All of the things that didn’t make sense start being named, you see that people behind the scenes have been stitching you into the fabric of your time. I’m not complaining, I was happy about it. But it felt uncomfortable too.


A train arrives at a station. A little boy and a little girl, brother and sister, are seated in a compartment face to face next to the window through which the buildings along the station platform can be seen passing as the train pulls to a stop. "Look," says the brother, "We're at Ladies!" "Imbecile!" replies his sister, "Can't you see we're at Gentlemen?".... For these children, Ladies and Gentlemen will be henceforth two countries toward which each of their souls will strive on divergent wings.


Every single thing becomes a word / in a language that Someone or Something, night and day, / writes down in a never-ending scribble, / which is the history of the world, embracing / Rome, Carthage, you, me, everyone, / my life, which I do not understand, this anguish / of being enigma, accident, and puzzle, / and all the discordant languages of Babel. / Behind each name lies that which has no name. / Today I feel its nameless shadow tremble / in the blue clarity of the compass needle, / whose rule extends as far as the far seas, / something like a clock glimpsed in a dream / or a bird that stirs suddenly in its sleep.

J.L.B—Buenos Aires, October 31, 1960

A man sets himself the task of portraying the world. Over the years he fills a given surface with images of provinces and kingdoms, mountains, bays, ships, islands, fish, rooms, instruments, heavenly bodies, horses, and people. Shortly before he dies he discovers that this patient labyrinth of lines is a drawing of his own face.

Complete graph

A drawing of a complete graph, with its vertices placed on a regular polygon, is sometimes referred to as a mystic rose.


and to have seen nothing, or almost nothing -
except the face of a girl from Buenos Aires -
a face that does not want you to remember it.


As we reflect we become convinced that a vast number of actions are repeated, that the majority of our activities resemble each other, that the various new tasks we perform are new but to an insignificant degree, and that certain principles elaborated in the school of life lie at the foundation of activity as a whole.


The learning of every word in a language, of every fact, argues organised reaction, and every word or fact so acquired implies an established trend. From week to week, perhaps from hour to hour, we are building up and breaking down temporary habits. Let me transcribe from my note book: "A certain noise made by boots. I recognise the noise and the purpose; but there is nothing present except a sense of familiarity and such feelings as might go with verbal and other images. Then, as expceted—here again there is but a feeling—I feel a tap on my arm. Then a voice says, 'Are you ready?' I knew what was going to be asked of me, and so I at once quietly nod my head." Observe the total absence of verbal and other imagery. Essentially I react as I had reacted before. The creaking boots were familiar, so was the implication, so was the tapping, so was the short speech, and so was my nod. The noise of the boots was expected about about that time. The moment I heard the voice, I did not so much know what was coming as felt its purport. In this way we act according to innumerable habits more or less transitory, attention being reduced whenever a thing is thought, or said or done a second time. Thus the way I turn over the pages of a book is a distinct trend, the manner in which I open and shut the door, the fashion in which I read, and the like.


Where words are scarce, they are seldom spent in vain, For they breathe truth that breathe their words in pain

White language

The idea of colour, for example is like white light which perplicates in itself the genetic elements and relations of all the colours, but is actualised in the diverse colours with their respective spaces; or the Idea of sound, which is also like white noise. There is even a white society and a white language, the latter being that which contains in its virtuality all the phonemes and relations destined to be actualised in diverse languages and in the distinctive parts of a given language.

All the space possible

When we see colour, we observe at least a uniform surface environed by other surfaces, from which it is differentiated by its special characteristics. If we exclude these other surfaces, we stare into nothingness and all colour is gone, or, at best, there remains only a vague feeling. [Is that so?] Closed-eye vision, again, presents a changing multitude of dots, very like pricks on the skin; but even these dots are the result of a selective or complicated process. When this process does not take place, we have no volume and no dimensions left, but merely cutaneous feelings [Is this so?] A shapeless cloud, a gust of wind, a swarm of bees, an indifferent form like that of a rock, may be regarded as having volume; but a strange medley of dots, as in dim closed-eye vision, in no way resembles masses, volumes or lines. The undeveloped man, then, is blind, and lacks a colour sense and space sense, the former sense, like the latter, arising from development. By organised attempts the chaos is reduced to cosmos, and this is done by systematically developing visual systems, singling out in this way portions of the chaos and creating points, lines, surfaces and volumes. Space, strictly speaking, has no dimensions. We have only a complex of lines, or changes in the field of visual development or attention. By persistent changes that field becomes gradually exhausted, and with it the content of space. Hence space, as we know it, is all the space possible.


The difference between the scene on the South African veldt and the reproduced photographic snapshot which reflects it, is great; but far greater still is the difference between the picture and the view gained by the simple method of turning it upside-down. In the latter case, vision scarcely exists, and in a perfect instance of this nature, the residue would resemble a throbbing ache or a tingling feeling, rather than fully developed sight. We seem, therefore, to be face to face here with the _matter_ of vision, minus its subtle developments. If this be so, we have come to the parting of the ways where the sense of sight separates itself from, or unites with, its fellow senses.


But physical technique, Robbins pointed out, is merely a tool. “It’s all about the choreography of people’s attention,” he said. “Attention is like water. It flows. It’s liquid. You create channels to divert it, and you hope that it flows the right way.”

The Spectacular Thefts of Apollo Robbins

“A lot of magic is designed to appeal to people visually, but what I’m trying to affect is their minds, their moods, their perceptions,” he told me. “My goal isn’t to hurt them or to bewilder them with a puzzle but to challenge their maps of reality.”


In other words, there is no self-sufficient agency that can qualify as intentional. There are varying degrees of choice at successive threshold states. The “will” to change or to stay the same is not an act of determination on the part of a unified subject in simple response to self-reflection or an internal impulse. It is a state of self-organized indeterminacy in response to complex causal constraints. It constitutes a real degree of freedom, but the choice belongs to the overall dissipative system with its plurality of selves. and not to the person: it is objectively cocaused at the crossroads of chance and determinacy. It is an objective illusion of the molar person to perceive the physical reality of free action as a metaphysical Freedom or "human right" exercised by a unified. self-directing, full causal agent.


VANSON motorcycle garments are designed to be worn on a motorcycle. They are tools. The fit is specific to the application. Though many of our motorcycle jackets are worn in urban markets as high fashion, it is their credibility as tools that makes them desirable as possessions.

Becoming resistance

Strata consist of giving form to matters, of imprisoning intensities or locking singularities into systems of resonance and redundancy, of producing upon the body of the earth molecules large and small and organizing them into molar aggregates. Strata are acts of capture

new things

I went to CERN, and one of the many great things about it is that people are doing things there in order to understand what they are doing, and it’s this vast iterative process with no definite outcome, but we do it because, perhaps, this is what we do when we encounter new things; we cannot do otherwise. We must stare at them ever longer and harder to understand what they mean.


Some architects can look at a building and tell you which version of autodesk was used to create it.

The last glass

C.P. To the limit?

G.D. What is the limit? It’s complicated.. I’ll tell you another way: an alcoholic is someone who never stops drinking. It never stops being the last drink. What does that mean? It’s as beautiful as…the formula of Peguy: The last water lily does not repeat the first… it’s the first water lily who copies all the others and the last. The first glass… repeats the last. The last is what matters. So what’s the last drink for an alcoholic? Well he gets up in the morning -I suppose he takes alcohol in the morning… and there are all types who take alcohol in the morning- and it’s all about waiting for the moment when he reaches the last glass. It’s neither the first, second or third that interests.. There’s something clever and cunning in an alcoholic, and the last glass also means… he evaluates, there is an evaluation, he assesses what can withstand… without collapsing. That varies widely depending on the individual. He evaluates the last drink and the others are his way of keeping the last one waiting. ‘The last’ means what? It means there can’t be more drink this day. It’s the last one that would allow.. allow him to start again the next day. Because if.. if he reaches the last, on the contrary, it exceeds his power. The last puts him under its power. To be under its power, when the last drink exceeds his power, he collapses. It means he’s in the hospital, or a change of habit; it means a change of arrangements. So when he says ‘the last glass’.. it is not the last, but the penultimate. He goes in search of the penultimate. Put in other terms, the penultimate [avant-derrier] is, I believe, the ‘penultimate’?

All the Names

Saramago’s own novel of 1997, Todos os Nomes (All the Names), set in the central registry office of an unnamed country, confronts the reader with an intimidating vista of endless shelves, “ciclópicas e sobre-humanas” (“cyclopean and superhuman”), which resembles Borges’ library, except that this labyrinth contains, not books or knowledge, but dry-as-dust bureaucratic files.

sola lingua bona est lingua mortua

the only good language is a dead language

spiritus ubi vult spirat

the spirit spreads wherever it wants

Feynman Method

Richard Feynman was fond of giving the following advice on how to be a genius. You have to keep a dozen of your favorite problems constantly present in your mind, although by and large they will lay in a dormant state. Every time you hear or read a new trick or a new result, test it against each of your twelve problems to see whether it helps. Every once in a while there will be a hit, and people will say: "How did he do it? He must be a genius!"


Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic


Contre-jour, French for 'against daylight', refers to photographs taken when the camera is pointing directly toward a source of light.


The tf–idf weight term frequency–inverse document frequency is a weight often used in information retrieval and text mining. This weight is a statistical measure used to evaluate how important a word is to a document in a collection or corpus. The importance increases proportionally to the number of times a word appears in the document but is offset by the frequency of the word in the corpus. Variations of the tf–idf weighting scheme are often used by search engines as a central tool in scoring and ranking a documents relevance given a user query. Tf-idf can be successfully used for stop-words filtering in various subject fields including text summarization and classification.


We toast the Lisp programmer who pens his thoughts within nests of parentheses.


In linguistics, gerund is a term used to refer to various non-finite verb forms in various languages: As applied to English, it refers to the usage of a verb (in its -ing form) as a noun (for example, the verb "learning" in the sentence "Learning is an easy process for some"). The word 'gerund' in English comes from the Latin term gerundium, of the same meaning. Gerundium itself comes from the gerundive of the Latin verb gero, gerundus, meaning "to be carried out".

Impression, Sunrise

Although it seems that the sun is the brightest spot on the canvas, it is in fact, when measured with a photometer, the same brightness or luminance as the sky. Dr. Margaret Livingstone, a professor of neurobiology at Harvard University, said "If you make a black and white copy of Impression: Sunrise, the Sun disappears [almost] entirely."


Isotropy is uniformity in all orientations; it is derived from the Greek iso (equal) and tropos (direction). Precise definitions depend on the subject area. Exceptions, or inequalities, are frequently indicated by the prefix an, hence anisotropy. Anisotropy is also used to describe situations where properties vary systematically, dependent on direction. Isotropic radiation has the same intensity regardless of the direction of measurement, and an isotropic field exerts the same action regardless of how the test particle is oriented.

Isotropic materials

An isotropic material is one which looks the same in every direction. We cannot define any special direction using the material properties. In other words, none of the properties depend the orientation; it is perfectly rotationally symmetric. Note that in order to be isotropic the material must be homogenous on the length scale of interest, ie the same at every point in the material.

For instance, rubber is a very isotropic material. Take a rubber ball, and it will feel the same and bounce the same however you rotate it. On the other hand, wood is an anisotropic material: hit it with an axe and it will take more force to break of you are cutting across the grain than along it. (Remember we're thinking about the material rather than the shape of the object.)

Can you show it to me?

In the course of my life, the more I concerned myself with physics, I realized that actually I was a "meta-physicist". And then I increasingly played with that idea. And if you ask me: "My dear Heinz von Foerster, what is a meta-physicist?', I would say the following: There are questions among those we ask about the world that it is possible to answer: "Heinz von Foerster, how old are you?" Well, you can look that up in a catalog: Born in 1911, that means he is 90. Or you can ask questions which cannot be answered, like for example: "Heinz von Foerster, tell me, what was the origin of the universe?" Well, then I could give you one of the 35 different theories. Ask an astronomer, and he says: "There was this Big Bang about 20 million years ago." Or ask a good Catholic: "Everyone knows that. God created the world, and after seven days he was weary and took a break and that was Sunday ..." So there are different, very interesting hypotheses about the origins of the universe. That is, there are so many different hypotheses because the question cannot be answered. So all that is relevant is how interesting is the story that someone invents to explain the origins of the universe. _Of course we are very close to art there ... If it's a matter of inventing a good story, a poetic story ..._ Exactly, exactly ... That's what it is. There is a struggle between two or three or even ten different poets. Who can invent a funny, amusing or interesting story so that everyone immediately thinks: "That's what must have happened!" _But science, and your own research ... those are not just inventions or good stories? Surely they're based on mathematics, on numbers, on provability, on indisputable scientific data?_ Well, yes, but these days there is already so much data that it is no longer possible to include all the different data in your "story". And then artificial data is invented, for example "particles" ... Then "particles" are invented that do whatever it is we don't understand. So in my opinion particles are always the solutions to problems that we can't solve any other way. That is, they are inventions that help to explain certain problems. Those are particles. _I think I have to ask a dumb question..._ I understand, yes ... Right, let me explain it a bit better. Let's say there is a hole in my theory, one I can't gloss over. So what I do is, I just say: Look, here are some new particles, that are either green, yellow or ... I don't know what ... They replace the hole in my theory. So I maintain that each particle we read about in today's physics is the answer to a question that we can't answer. _But that's terrible! How can we let a world-wide networked system of machines grow, more or less into infinity, if it is based on theories that apparently have holes or are only "good stories", I mean on such shaky foundations? Isn't that dangerous?_ Well, in this world-wide functioning system of machines all theories are correct. And of course that's what people want. And why are they correct? Because they can all be deduced from other theories and "stories". _But what will it lead to? How does it go on?_ It goes on deducing indefinitely. _But there have to be limits somewhere?_ No, not at all, that's the good thing about it. You can go on forever. _In logic._ Yes, precisely. _But in reality?_ Where is reality? Can you show it to me?


A chair I make is likely to wobble; a book takes endless pains; I can’t make a computer at all; and no one has been able to make a plane that flies far on batteries. Making right world – versions ‑ or making worlds ‑ is harder than making chairs or planes, and failure is common, largely because all we have available is scrap material recycled from old and stubborn worlds. Our having done no better or worse is no evidence that chairs or planes or worlds are found rather than made.

N.Goodman - Ways of worldmaking

As intimated by William James's equivocal title A Pluralistic Universe, the issue between monism and pluralism tends to evaporate under analysis. If there is but one world, it embraces a multiplicity of contrasting aspects; if there are many worlds, the collection of them all is one. The one world may be taken as many, or the many worlds taken as one; whether one or many depends on the way of taking. ¶ Why, then, does Cassirer stress the multiplicity of worlds? In what important and often neglected sense are there many worlds? Let it be clear that the question here is not of the possible worlds that many of my contemporaries, especially those near Disneyland, are busy making and manipulating. We are not speaking in terms of multiple possible alternatives to a single actual world but of multiple actual worlds. How to interpret such terms as "real", "unreal", "fictive", and "possible" is a subsequent question. ¶ Consider, to begin with, the statements "The sun always moves" and "The sun never moves" which, though equally true, are at odds with each other. Shall we say, then, that they describe different worlds, and indeed that there are as many different worlds as there are such mutually exclusive truths? Rather, we are inclined to regard the two strings of words not as complete statements with truth-values of their own but as elliptical for some such statements as "Under frame of reference A, the sun always moves" and "Under frame of reference B, the sun never moves" — statements that may both be true of the same world. ¶ Frames of reference, though, seem to belong less to what is described than to systems of description: and each of the two statements relates what is described to such a system. If I ask about the world, you can offer to tell me how it is under one or more frames of reference; but if I insist that you tell me how it is apart from all frames, what can you say? We are confined to ways of describing whatever is described. Our universe, so to speak, consists of these ways rather than of a world or of worlds. ¶ The alternative descriptions of motion, all of them in much the same terms and routinely transformable into one another, provide only a minor and rather pallid example of diversity in accounts of the world. Much more striking is the vast variety of versions and visions in the several sciences, in the works of different painters and writers, and in our perceptions as informed by these, by circumstances, and by our own insights, interests' and past experiences. Even with all illusory or wrong or dubious versions dropped, the rest exhibit new dimensions of disparity. Here we have no neat set of frames of reference, no ready rules for transforming physics, biology, and psychology into one another, and no way at all of transforming any of these into Van Gogh's vision, or Van Gogh's into Canaletto's. Such of these versions as are depictions rather than descriptions have no truth-value in the literal sense, and cannot be combined by conjunction. The difference between juxtaposing and conjoining two statements has no evident analogue for two pictures or for a picture and a statement. The dramatically contrasting versions of the world can of course be relativized: each is right under a given system — for a given science, a given artist, or a given perceiver and situation. Here again we turn from describing or depicting 'the world' to talking of descriptions and depictions, but now without even the consolation of intertranslatability among or any evident organization of the several systems in question.

Circle Takes the Square

I know its all been done before, I want to do it again. I want to do it again.

Thinking and Thought

Further, in our language we have a distinction between "thinking" and "thought." "Thinking" implies the present tense—some activity going on which may include critical sensitivity to what can go wrong. Also there may be new ideas, and perhaps occasionally perception of some kind inside. "Thought" is the past participle of that. We have the idea that after we have been thinking something it just evaporates. but thinking doesn't disappear. It goes somehow into the brain and leaves something—a trace—which becomes thought. And thought then acts automatically. So thought is the response from memory—from the past, from what has been done. Thus we have thinking and thought.



Foreign Agents

The books were small, black, and thin; footnotes or other academic commentary were conspicuously absent. They could be read on the subway, a few pages at a time, like the newspaper: Their place was in the pockets of spiked leather jackets as much as on the shelves. Indeed, critics would often go out of their way to avoid quoting from them, returning to the original French texts or to more authoritative sources, as if there were something truly wrong with the volumes. They had a sleek, covert look and feel that happened to mesh with that moment of New York City perfectly, seeming to reflect the New World Order's aesthetic: hard and portable, compact and cost-effective. They were light, but moving at light-speed, never giving the sense that one had time to slow down and scratch one's head-they were already headed somewhere else.

Who Needs Guitars Anyway?

is an album released in 2000 by Alice DeeJay. It is their first and only album. Includes the hit singles "Back In My Life", "Better Off Alone", "Will I Ever", "The Lonely One", and "Celebrate Our Love" (listed in chronological order, and descending order of popularity).

Leather and Lace

Another long-forgotten gesture, the Société Anonyme’s inaugural exhibition seems to have been in effect Duchamp’s first major exhibition design, looking forward to his later Surrealist installations, and for it he covered the floor of the entire space with industrial rubber, wrapped the walls with a special oilskin fabric that would reflect the blue of the sky, and encircled all of the individual paintings with lace doily frames. No photographs of this exhibition, sadly, survive.


More generally, all our concepts and explanations (whether of universal and necessary character or not) have at their core the perception of a totality of ratios or proportions. [...] Thus, to perceive such a simple thing as the straightness of a line is to see that each segment of it is related to the next segment, as the next is in turn related to the one that follows it. Or, in more concise terms, if S1, S2, S3, denote any three successive segments, then S1 : S2 :: S2 : S3. If, however, the line should suddenly change its direction, at a certain point, then we would see that the segment that precedes this point is not related to the one that follows in the same way as prevails among the rest of the segments. If we could introduce the symbol X to mean "is not to" then, for this case, we could write S2 X S2 :: S2 : S3 (i.e., S1 is not to S2, as S2 is to S3). ¶ When we are perceiving one line meeting another, we are immediately aware of a totality of such similarities and differences of ratio. And, of course, as our attention goes to more complex structures of lines and surfaces forming a geometrical figure, we begin to be aware of a whole hierarchy of such ratios and their relationships. This hierarchy can develop indefinitely in its complexity and subtlety, as our perception extends into every phase of life. No matter what we perceive, however the essential meaning or content of this perception involves a totality of ratio, in the most general sense of this word.


"Arbitrage," in the usual sense, means to make money by taking advantage of differences in the price of something between different markets. It is spatial, in other words, and hinges on the arbitrageur knowing what is going on simultaneously in different places. [...] Temporal arbitrage, if I may coin a phrase, hinges on the arbitrageur knowing what technologies people will pay money for next year, and how soon afterwards those same technologies will become free. What spatial and temporal arbitrage have in common is that both hinge on the arbitrageur's being extremely well informed: one about price gradients across space at a given time, and the other about price gradients over time in a given place.

Flee all milieus.

Flee all milieus. Each and every milieu is oriented toward the neutralization of some truth. Literary circles exist to smother the clarity of writing; anarchist milieus to blunt the directness of direct action; scientific milieus to withhold the implications of their research from the majority of people today; sport milieus to contain in their gyms the various forms of life they should create.


Writing has nothing to do with signifying, but with land-surveying and map-making, even of countries yet to come.


var J0000 = 1721424.5; // Julian date of Gregorian epoch: 0000-01-01 || var J1970 = 2440587.5; // Julian date at Unix epoch: 1970-01-01 || var JMJD = 2400000.5; // Epoch of Modified Julian Date system || var J1900 = 2415020.5; // Epoch (day 1) of Excel 1900 date system (PC) || var J1904 = 2416480.5; // Epoch (day 0) of Excel 1904 date system (Mac)


One contemporary belief likely to stupefy future generations is the postmodern orthodoxy that the body is primarily, if not entirely, a linguistic and discursive construction. Coincident with cybernetic developments that stripped information of its body were discursive analyses within the humanities, especially the archaeology of knowledge pioneered by Michel Foucault, that saw the body as a play of discourse systems. Although researchers in the physical and human sciences acknowledged the importance of materiality in different ways, they nevertheless collaborated in creating the postmodern ideology that the body's materiality is secondary to the logical or semiotic structures it encodes. It is not difficult to find pronouncements supporting an ideology of disembodiment in cultural theory, no less than in cybernetics. Consider the following claims. "The Human body, our body, seems superfluous in its proper expanse, in the complexity and multiplicity of its organs, of its tissue and functions, because today everything is concentrated in the brain and the genetic code, which alone sum up the operational definition of being," Jean Baudriallard wrote in The Ecstasy of Communication. I believe that they should be taken as evidence not that the body has disappeared by that a certain kind of subjectivity has emerged. The very theorists who most emphatically claim that the body is disappearing also operate within material and cultural circumstances that make the claim for the body's disappearance seem plausible. The body's dematerialization depends in complex and highly specific ways on the embodied circumstances that an ideology of dematerialization would obscure. Excavating these connections requires a way of talking about the body responsive to its construction as discourse/information and yet not trapped within it.

Richard Kenney

Cringe ye, who yet jot “Volkswagon” when the doctor prompts “automata.” The world’s changed; no angels at the top end, now—and you?


In broadest terms, syzygy (pronounced /ˈsɪzɨdʒi/) is a kind of unity, especially through coordination or alignment, most commonly used in the astronomical and/or astrological sense. Syzygy is derived from the Late Latin syzygia, "conjunction," from the Greek σύζυγος (syzygos). Syzygial, adjective of syzygy, describes the alignment of three or more celestial bodies in the same gravitational system along a line.


It is, of course, well known that in all normal acts of visual perception the eyes do not observe the world with a blank, unmoving stare. On the contrary, they observe by continually scanning the visual field in a series of movements to and fro, and making continuous adjustments of focus. Without this optical movement, and the muscular sensations which accompany it, we should have no proper appreciation of space. And where drawing is concerned it seems quite clear that the movements suggested by the traces of the drawing-point ought actually to guide the motions of the eyes. The eyes must follow the original movements of the point—all of them, in due scale of emphasis—if one is to grasp the drawing properly. One adopts the mental scanning-pattern which the artist originally set down. One learns thus, by assimilation, advanced scanning procedures from artists whose own highly developed performances have been recorded by their drawing-points. So drawing is seen to be one of the most important elements in educated the eye and in developing visual perception—itself a matter of visual concepts and habitual structures. [...] This again is one of the reasons why it matters so much for us to be able to discern in a drawing the original rough laying-out strokes by which the artist first located his image on the surface. They are an integral part of the scanning-pattern which will give to our perception the totality of the image. [...] In fact it is well known that excessive 'completeness' or 'finish' can be more injurious to a drawing than to any other kind of art.

William Thomson (1852)

The result would inevitably be a state of universal rest and death, if the universe were finite and left to obey existing laws. But it is impossible to conceive a limit to the extent of matter in the universe; and therefore science points rather to an endless progress, through an endless space, of action involving the transformation of potential energy into palpable motion and hence into heat, than to a single finite mechanism, running down like a clock, and stopping for ever.

Northern gesture

Seasoned explorers, vehemently insisting on what they had seen, set down mountains and islands on their charts where there was nothing but empty sky ... Expeditions sent out later to verify these new lands sometimes saw the same fata morgana, further confusing the issue. Only by prolonging their arduous journeys, thereby observing a constant receding of the image, did they prove that the land was not there at all.


…Vitolf deprived those he wished of his sense of sight …Visinn, too, a fighter of extraordinary reputation had the habit of reducing the edge of all weapons to a state of bluntness merely by his glance.

Empty space

Why not have beings for every kind of direction? Why are we three-dimensional beings unaware of any two-dimensional beings? How could beings of four dimensions escape detection as regards their three dimensions; and how could a being of one dimension, a fourth dimension, interfere with beings of dimensions to which it does not belong? The three-dimensional doctrine of space must be regarded with suspicion; for such a division merely selects certain few factors which are not what they appear to be. […] We may turn now to more general considerations. We look upon a piece of land, and we remark that there is _space_ to build twenty houses on; so, too, we glance into our purse, and say that it is _empty_. Now note, not only is vision three-dimensionsal, but it's field is unbroken by any points of no vision. Hence we never see nothing, never really gaze into vacancy. What do we mean, then, by an _empty_ purse? There is but one answer. Certain lines are observed, where certain other lines or complexes are imaginable. Instead of the worn lining, sovereigns might be seen; instead of heaps of refuse, houses might be seen. It is not that a full purse is an empty purse plus coins, it is a purse the lining of which is made of gold and not leather. […] What, then, is meant by _space_ and _empty space_? Are they a mysterious somewhere where lines are placed, a hole without walls where things are situated? One fails to catch the sense of these phrases, except in terms of lines. If the nearest row of houses which is within the view were pulled down, I could see the exterior of the next row behind it. So, too, the exterior of the row to be pulled down could be made to vanish, by building in front of it, by changing the lines. Similarly, since only one line in one position can be seen on a smooth two-dimensional plane, two things cannot simultaneously occupy the same space. Again, most lines may be displaced by others, and hence men speak of latent lines, of space. Infinite space, except as meaning infinite expanse, or infinite endeavour to see, is infinite nonsense: you might as well say you could imagine a room without boundaries. If we could stand on an overhanging promontory of a flat world and look outwards, we should have the immediate environment of the eyes, and around us, perhaps, some grey expanse. This expanse might be imagined indefinitely retreating as we advance into the gloom; but wipe out the lines, wipe out sight, and not space but nothing is left. Assume that we are beings but of one sense, that of vision, and there can be little doubt that by space we mean certain line relations and details, and that apart from these relations the word has no meaning. Thus space, being a relation between systems, cannot exist prior to systems, nor can it survive them. Large, small, round, square , are visual terms. When we are once convinced that space is not a glove into which the world fits, our difficulties are soon overcome.

How things appear

Actually, it's worse than that. As these quotations attest, Western philosophy is used to dealing with ideas of depth and surface, essence and appearance, or basis and superstructure, and this just about always translates into a moral distinction between the profound and the superficial. So where does colour lie along this well-worn path? Well, if colour is make-up, then it is not really on this path at all, and perhaps this is a part of the colour problem. If surface veils depth, if appearance masks essence, then make-up masks a mask, veils a veil, disguises a disguise. It is not simply a deception; it is a double deception. It is a surface on a surface, and thus even farther from substance than 'true' appearance. How things appear is one thing; how things appear to appear is another. Colour is a double illusion, a double deception. It is not just that colour is at the wrong end of a moral opposition; it is perhaps, just beyond the wrong end.


Colour may be a continuum, but the continuum is continuously broken, the indivisible endlessly divided. Colour is formless but ever formed into patterns and shapes. From at least the time of Newton, colour has been subjected to the discipline of geometry, ordered into an endless variety of colour circles, triangles, stars, cubes, cylinders or spheres. These shapes always contain divisions, and these divisions, as often as not, contain words. And with these words, colour becomes colours.


In a way, Smithson saw and treated the world as an enormous text, reminiscent of the library in Borges's "Library of Babel," which is synonymous with the universe itself, "composed of an indefinite and perhaps an infinite number of hexagonal galleries"--which seem to prefigure the crystalline structures that Smithson himself favored. Borges's library, moreover, is defined as "a sphere whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere." Significantly, in a 1968 citation of Pascal's statement, Smithson added "or language becomes an infinite museum whose center is everywhere and whose limits are nowhere." Indeed, Smithson treated written texts as if they too--like his plastic works--were made of solid materials; as if words were not only abstract signs for things and concepts, but also a form of matter. Asked in 1972 whether his writing affected the development of the things he made, Smithson answered that "language tended to inform my structures. In other words, I guess if there was any kind of notation it was a kind of linguistic notation ... But I was interested in language as a material entity, as something that wasn't involved in ideational values." This materiality, he felt, distinguished his work from conceptual art, which he characterized as "essentially ideational." When asked what he meant by the "material" quality of language, Smithson elaborated: "Well, just as printed matter--information which has a kind of physical presence for me. I would construct my articles the way I would construct a work." [...] Moreover, Smithson saw words themselves as containing a crucial (if usually overlooked) physicality which, through a slight shift in perceptual emphasis, could be seen to contain its own network of meanings: "Words and rocks contain a language that follows a syntax of splits and ruptures. Look at any word long enough and you will see it open up into a series of faults, into a terrain of particles each containing its own void." This kind of byplay between thing and idea lies at the core of Smithson's whole undertaking as a writer and as an artist. "My work is impure," he asserted in 1969, "it is clogged with matter. There is no escape from the mind. The two are in a constant collision course. You might say that my work is like an artistic disaster. It is a quiet catastrophe of mind and matter."

Giuseppe Penone

The mirrored lenses is a work done in 1970. We created them with an optician. At the time contact lenses were not as common as today, they were not used as much. It was created putting two lenses together with a mirrored surface between the two lenses. They were very thick and difficult to wear, quite painful. The idea was that the body in itself, in space is sculpture. The body of a person. When our eyes are open the physical extension is as far as the eyes can see. The space we see is reflected in our mind, therefore the space we see is the extension of our body. Closing our eyes we define the body with the volume that it really has. And what we see we transmit it through our actions, in what we do, in the conception of reality and life that we have, and if you make a visual work you would retransmit it through the work. Therefore closing our eyes with a mirrored element, reflecting what we see, it allows others to see what this person would have seen. And that was the idea. It is like becoming part of the work before it is created. [...] Well I said before, when someone looks, the external space is what we have in our mind. And is there a time as well when you open your eyes, the light time, like a propagation of the glance. Like a projection. In this piece I used branches and I have created a mask with leaves covering the eyes, and from there two branches are like the propagation of the glance in space. These two branches cross over indicating what we have seen, like the optic nerves, that is why the title of this work is 'Doppio sguardo vegetale' as there are two masks crossing glances, and the reason of the leaves is to indicate that. [...] In 1978 I wanted to create a sculpture about the idea of breath, that is how 'soffio di fogile' has been created, because when we breathe we create a volume of air different from that which surrounds us, and this volume of air, it is already a sculpture, something automatic that we produce for all our life, this volume that extends from our body. [...] The synthesis of the shape of a breath is like a vase, therefore I underlined it with the shape of a vase and the imprint of a body that produces breath. It is like relating the body with the invisible part of its extension. Another point is that when we breathe we absorb oxygen into our body through the lungs, and our body which is waterproof to the outside in that moment changes. This is what happened as well during reproduction, in that case the woman's body is reactive to the man's semen, there is something concerning Genesis in the idea of breath which is expressed in mythology and with the religious conception of the creation of mankind. There is this idea of breath as a vital part of generating life. This is secondary though to the problem I had with sculpture. Later on I realised this other work collecting box leaves. As they are small and light. I put them together and I lied on them and breathed in, again to highlight the body and the extension of breath which is clear in the leaves; so the weight of the body and the breath have the same value.

Robert Irwin on Mondrian

Mondrian laid out the conceptual ground for contemporary art -- the history of Mondrian's work lays out a very careful road map -- he takes his work from one kind of perception or awareness of reality (a beautifully rendered tree or flower) and then step-by-step began to examine other dimensions of how it exists (its field density, its weight, the interaction of the energy of it to its space). Mondrian moved from one kind of perception of knowing to another kind of perception of knowing (i.e., from one kind of perception or knowing or understanding of reality to another kind of understanding or perception of reality). [...] Having brought up Piet Mondrian, let me just read something from him, written in 1912, which kind of grounds everything I do today. Interesting to find it 30 years later... I could have saved myself a lot of time [...]

Desiderata of Interplanetary Internetworking

Go thoughtfully in the knowledge that all interplanetary communication derives from the modulation of radiated energy, and sometimes a planet will be between the source and the destination. Therefore rely not on end-to-end connectivity at any time, for the universe does not work that way. Neither rely on ample bandwidth, for power is scarce out there and the bit error rates are high. Know too that signal strength drops off by the square of the distance, and there is a lot of distance. Consider the preciousness of interplanetary communication links, and restrict access to them with all your heart. Protect also the confidentiality of application data or risk losing your customers. Remember always that launch mass costs money. Think not, then, that you may require all the universe to adopt at once the newest technologies. Be backward compatible. Never confuse patience with inaction. By waiting for acknowledgement to one message before sending the next, you squander tracking pass time that will never come to you again in this life. Send as much as you can, as early as you can, and meanwhile confidently await responses for as long as they may take to find their way to you. Therefore be at peace with physics, and expect not to manage the network in closed control loops -- neither in the limiting of congestion nor in the negotiation of connection parameters nor even in on-demand access to transmission bands. Each node must make its own operating choices in its own understanding, for all the others are too far away to ask. Truly the solar system is a large place and each one of us is on his or her own. Deal with it.

Seventh Elegy

Where once an enduring house was, now a cerebral structure crosses our path, completely belonging to the realm of concepts, as though it still stood in the brain. Our age has built itself vast reservoirs of power, formless as the straining energy that it wrests from the earth. Temples are no longer known.

User-Generated Content

Not content in the sense of meaning or subject matter, but rather information as distinct from its mode of presentation.

Prelinger Archives

As we wish to address the future the past also desires to address us.

It's a brassiere.

It's brand-new. Revolutionary uplift.

Smallest Uninteresting Number

The question arises: Are there any uninteresting numbers? We can prove that there are none by the following simple steps. If there are dull numbers, then we can divide all numbers into two sets - interesting and dull. In the set of dull numbers there will be only one number that is the smallest. Since it is the smallest uninteresting number it becomes, ipso facto , an interesting number. We must therefore remove it from the dull set and place it in the other. But now there will be another smallest uninteresting number. Repeating this process will make any dull number interesting.






The liar paradox, known to the ancients as the pseudomenon, encompasses paradoxical statements such as "This sentence is false." or "The next sentence is false. The previous sentence is true." These statements are paradoxical because there is no way to assign them a consistent classical binary truth value. If "This sentence is false" is true, then it is true and what it says is the case; but what it says is that it is false, hence it is false. On the other hand, if it is false, then what it says is not the case; thus, since it says that it is false, it must be true.


Possibility has, in effect, materialized. The matter of the system has entered a state where it does not extrapolate into an abstract possibility, and instead effectively absorbs possibilities, en masse, into its animated matter. Materially present possibility is potential. The system"s criticality, of course, is as actual as any other state. What is in excess-over is the self-referentiality of the system"s critical condition, its doubling back on itself en masse. What the self-absorbed system infolds is materially co-present in that way: in potential.


By materializing self-relation, its representationally paradoxical properties are neutralized. The logical contradiction of the Liar Paradox resolves itself into the engineering circuit of the bistable multivibrator: 'This statement is false' is true when it is false and vice versa; but a logical NOT gate whose input is connected to its own output materializes the unthinkable by traversing a sequence of states in time: TRUE, FALSE, TRUE etc.


A pack of wolves, a bunch of grapes, or a flock of pigeons are all examples of sets of things.

Alice DeeJay

Who Needs Guitars Anyway?

Drawn in Two Directions

Every imaginable line exemplifies every direction at once. A perpendicular line without breadth or depth is a monstrosity, and cannot be conceived.


Duchamp’s term for the all but imperceptible difference between two seemingly identical items was, the term infrathin [inframince], a term closely linked to what Duchamp also called deferral or delay. ... Indeed, infrathin, Duchamp declared, cannot be defined, ‘One can only give examples of it.’

Aesthetic (2)

1798 W. TAYLOR in Monthly Rev. XXV. 585 In the dialect peculiar to Professor Kant..his receptivity for aesthetic gratification [is] not delicate. [mod. ad. Gr., of or pertaining to, things perceptible by the senses, things material (as opposed to things thinkable or immaterial), also ‘perceptive, sharp in the senses’; f. vb. stem - ‘feel, apprehend by the senses’. Applied in Germ. by Baumgarten (1750-58, Æsthetica) to ‘criticism of taste’ considered as a science or philosophy; against which, as a misuse of the word found in German only, protest was made by Kant (1781, Crit. R.V. 21), who applied the name, in accordance with the ancient distinction of and, to ‘the science which treats of the conditions of sensuous perception,’ a sense retained in the Kantian philosophy, and found in English c1800. But Baumgarten's use of æsthetik found popular acceptance, and appeared in Eng. after 1830, though its adoption was long opposed. (See below.) Recent extravagances in the adoption of a sentimental archaism as the ideal of beauty have still further removed æsthetic and its derivatives from their etymological and purely philosophical meaning. ‘The pronunciations ({ope}s{sm}{vdftheta}{ope}t{shti}k, i{lm}s{sm}{vdftheta}{ope}t{shti}k, {ope}s{sm}{vdftheta}i{lm}t{shti}k, i{lm}s{sm}{vdftheta}i{lm}t{shti}k), are all in use; the second is at present most common in London’ (N.E.D., 1884).]


Like ‘modernism’, the term ‘aesthetic’ is continuously debased, its original reference to something approaching ‘the emotional sensation of reaction to the visual’ — or ‘having an experience’ — now diluted to little more than a euphemism for ‘formal’. Here I’ve tried to go after those objects I imagine will combine or curdle to provoke something aesthetic in that original sense.

In Objects

Difference is the contrary of equality

Movement / Brian Massumi

It is the movement of our bodies that operates the selection. Every move we make is an existential pressure cooker bringing forth vision from the vacuum. It has long been known that vision cannot develop if the body is immobilized. This was tested in the famous (and infamous) experiments in which kittens were immobilized to find out whether they would be able to see when the grew up. They couldn't.


The notion that north should always be up and east at the right was established by the Egyptian astronomer Ptolemy (90-168 AD). "Perhaps this was because the better-known places in his world were in the northern hemisphere, and on a flat map these were most convenient for study if they were in the upper right-hand corner," historian Daniel Boorstin opines. Mapmakers haven't always followed Ptolemy; during the Middle Ages, Boorstin notes, maps often had east on top--whence the expression "to orient."

Proposition 3

4) Finally, the model is problematic, instead of theorematic: figures are considered only from the point of view of the affections that befall them: sections, ablations, adjunctions, projections. One does not proceed by specific differences from a genus to its species, nor by deduction from a stable essence to the properties deriving from it, but from a problem to the accidents that condition and resolve it. This involves all manner of deformations, transmutations, passages to the limit, operations in which each figure designates an "event" much more than an essence; the square no longer exists independently of a quadrature, the cube of a cubature, the straight line of a rectification. Whereas the theorem is of the rational order (de I'ordre des raisons), the problem is affective, and is inseparable from the metamorphoses, generations and creations within science itself. Despite what Gabriel Marcel may say, the problem is not an "obstacle," it is the surpassing of the obstacle, a projection, in other words a war machine. All that movement is what royal science is striving to limit when it reduces as much as possible the range of the "problem-element" and subordinates it to the "theorem-element."

Standard Stoppages


Watching the Gaps

Watching the Gaps

Sculpture and Psychoanalysis - Judd's Badge - Tim Martin -

To give a very simple example, it is like the three-year-old boy who, upon losing his favourite toy car, responds to the anxiety by becoming the car and motoring around as if he were the car.  The id's object-cathexis is thus taken under control by the ego by making itself into a car, or at least those parts of the car that are libido causing, i.e. the sound, the movement, the shiny paint, the variety of interior spaces, and the translucency of the glass.  This is why Smithson listed in detail the chemical contents of the paints he and Judd used in 1966.  Thus, for Smithson, specific objects produced a sensation of 'an inaccessible regression [that] enforces a danger-stimulus, to which no reaction is appropriate'.  Although the object-choice itself regresses to infinity (it's gone), no anxiety results because, as models of the ego, Judd's sculptures retain some of its features.

Fragmentation and Interdisciplinarity

"Thus art, science, technology, and human work in general, are divided up into specialties, each considered to be separate in essence from the others. Becoming dissatisfied with this state of affairs, men have set up further interdisciplinary subjects, which were intended to unite these specialties, but these new subjects have ultimately served mainly to add further separate fragments. [...] The notion that all these fragments are separately existent is evidently an illusion, and this illusion cannot do other than lead to endless conflict and confusion." Bohm - Wholeness and the Implicate Order; pp. 1-3.

Marvin Minsky, The Society of Mind, 183;

Fieldwork with children and computers is rich in examples of the kind of fright that Minsky expects. For example, an incident where it was evoked by a first contact with recursion is reported in Sherry Turkle, The Second Self. Interviews with adults on early experiences also reveal many such memories--fear of prisms, of mirrors reflecting mirrors, fear of questions such as "How far away are the stars?"


A word or phrase placed typically before a substantive and indicating the relation of that substantive to a verb, an adjective, or another substantive, as English at, by, with, from, and in regard to.

Border transfer - edge transfer

Border transfer - edge transfer

One thing after the other.

One thing after the other.



Default time/clock collection

Default time/clock collection

Demarcating Boundaries

There is no spatiality that is not organized by the determination of frontiers

Hyper-solid homage to the artifical (Artfice);

"I am reminded of Roland Barthe's essay on seventeenth-century Flemish painting, on obsessive tactile materialism, what he calls 'the world as object in itself'."


The simulacrum on the far side of the screen towers of the everyday, not as its representation, but as its mythic model and truer self.


The crash would appear as the emblem of an unarticulated desire to return to a “primitive” regime of “symbolic exchange,” to a relation of fluidity and ambivalence, between the domains of the living and the dead, and incompatible with operation criteria.


The main concepts of information theory can be grasped by considering the most widespread means of human communication: language. Two important aspects of a good language are as follows: First, the most common words (e.g., "a," "the," "I") should be shorter than less common words (e.g., "benefit," "generation," "mediocre"), so that sentences will not be too long. Such a tradeoff in word length is analogous to data compression and is the essential aspect of source coding. Second, if part of a sentence is unheard or misheard due to noise—e.g., a passing car—the listener should still be able to glean the meaning of the underlying message. Such robustness is as essential for an electronic communication system as it is for a language; properly building such robustness into communications is done by channel coding. Source coding and channel coding are the fundamental concerns of information theory.

Spatiotemporal Effects / Curtis Roads;

The IR of a room contains many impulses, corresponding to reflections off various surfaces of the room--its echo pattern. When such an IR is convolved with an arbitrary sound, the result is as if that sound had been played in that room, because it has been mapped into the room's echo pattern.

Massumi on brightness;

Fogs: actual traces of the virtual are often light effects. Although we tend to think of the perceptual dimensions of light as clearly distinguishable and almost boringly familiar, they are not so docile on closer inspection. [...] The boundaries we set and distinctions we function by are habitual. According to many theorists of vision, they do not replace the infinitely complex perceptual fog that is our originary and abiding experience of light. They occur with them, alongside, in a parallel current or on a superposed abstract perceptual surface, in a perpetual state of emergence from the continuum of light-dimensions that one frustrated would-be tamer of visual anomaly termed “the brightness confound.” / The “brightness confound” can become a conscious percept, through a concerted effort of unlearning habits of seeing, or through a simple accident of attention. When it does, the confound is contagious. It strikes depth: three-dimensionality, argues the “ecological” school of perceptual theory, is an effect of complex differentials of surface lighting played out in ever-shifting proximities of shadow and color, reflectance and luminosity, illumination and
translucence (it is not, as traditional theories of perception would have it, the product of mysterious calculations of relative size and distance--as if the eyes could count). / Depth is a surface effect susceptible to the brightness confound. When it goes, so goes separable form. Not only do the relative size and distance of objects flutter, their boundaries blur. They cease to be separate figures, becoming not entirely localizable zones in a fuzzy continuum. In other words, they cease to be objects, becoming what they always were, in the beginning and in parallel: fluctuations. Visual runs. Experiential transition zones. The distinctions of habit fold back into the always accompanying level of the more-than- three-dimensioned light concurrence from which they emerged. The fixed boundaries and “constants” of our habitual perceptions are emergences from an experiential confound to which they can return, and must return. For they are not in the final analysis structural constants at all, but continually regenerated effects, predicated on the variation they follow and emerge from, as its perceptual arrest. They rest entirely on variation.

The Optical Unconscious;

The answer explains the reference to the "fixed stare" in that Ruskin cannot take his eyes from the "sea" and "the sea is a special kind of medium for modernism." How so, the implied reader wants to know, and the answer is that the sea is "a visual plenitude that is somehow heightened and pure, both a limitless expanse and a sameness, flattening it into nothing, the no-space of sensory deprivation." So the sea is a sort of ready-made monochrome, or perhaps a natural analogue to an all over blue painting, or perhaps to the oblong luminosities of what Rosalind Krauss elsewhere designates "The California Sublime." Or in any case for what she designates here as "the optical and its limits," where a certain kind of positive nothingness is in fact what one sees.


One could say that nouns do not really exist, only verbs exist. A noun is just a "slow" verb; that is, it refers to a process that is progressing so slowly so as to appear static.


"As an example, let us consider the Latin verb 'videre', meaning 'to see', which is used in English in such forms as 'video'. We then introduce the root verbal form 'to vidate'. This does not mean merely to see in the visual sense, but we shall take it to refer to every aspect of perception including even the act of understanding, which is apprehension of a totality, that includes sense perception, intellect, feeling, etc. (e.g., in the common language 'to understand' and 'to see' may be used interchangeably). So the word 'to vidate' will call attention to a spontaneous and unrestricted act of perception of any sort whatsoever, including perception of whether what is seen fits or does not fit 'what is', as well as perception even of the very attention-calling function of the word itself (...)"

David Foster Wallace, "E Unibus Pluram";

"Today, when we can eat Tex-Mex with chopsticks while listening to reggae and watching a YouTube rebroadcast of the Berlin Wall's fall - i.e., when damn near everything presents itself as familiar - it's not a surprise that some of today's most ambitious art is going about trying to make the familiar strange....[by] paradoxically trying to restore what's taken for 'real' to three whole dimensions, to reconstruct a univocally round world out of disparate streams of flat sights."

Smithson, Entropy and the New Monuments;

There is something irresistible about such a place, something grand and empty. This kind of architecture without "value of qualities," is, if anything, a fact. From this "undistinguished" run of architecture [...] we gain a clear perception of physical reality free from the general claims of "purity and idealism." Only commodities can ford such illusionist values [...] As the cloying effect of such "values" wears off, one perceives the "facts" of the outer edge, the flat surface, the banal, the empty, the cool, bland after blank; in other words, that infinitesimal condition known as entropy.

New Totalities;

The new totalities, or transcultural ensembles, that can be envisioned in the near future in the place of "collective identities" issue from the processes of self-differentiation maturing into interferences. In this case differences strengthen our need for each other: Some of our differences are neutralized (in order not to become oppositional), others are intensified (in order to avoid group identification). Interference is what we perceive as the joy and play of communication that reinforces some of our differences and neutralizes others in the play of non-totalitarian totalities. Generally, totality can be developed in two directions: (1) as opposed to difference and therefore eliminating all particular differences, as in a totalitarian state; (2) as truly different from difference and therefore preserving and nourishing all particular differences, as in an interdisciplinary community. \ These new totalities will shape the transcultural world, which has not yet received any satisfactory theoretical articulation. Deconstruction may prove methodologically inadequate to this emerging class of totalities that could be detected as transcultural communities, or as transmetaphysical systems, as trans-utopian visions, or as transsocial groups. Deconstruction operates through the theoretical differentiation of existing unities while what is in question now is the new integration of differences, the construction of trans-differential cultural, social, epistemological totalities.


"Every one of us is in that computer somewhere, whether it's because of out drivers license, social security, or income tax. But the fact is that there is an alternate person that is an electrical person that is forming inside this electrical dimension. And then the question is, 'Are you in control of that information, or is somebody else in control of it?' When thinking about Tron, you sort of have to picture yourself inside a Pac-Man game. Picture yourself in there fighting for your own life, and the only way you can get out of that game is if you figure out how it works from the inside this time. The big difference is the game doesn't look the way it looks to you from this world as a little screen. This time it looks real. What happens in Tron is that the character that Jeff Bridges plays, a guy named Flynn, has invented these various video games, and they've been taken away from him illegally by a large computer company. In an effort to release the information from their computer files, he takes on their computer system. In so doing, he gets pulled into the computer. Once he's in the computer, he gets sentenced to die as a video game player by the Master Control Program. The irony is that those video games are his creation and now his life depends on overcoming his own creation."

Heat Death & Homogeneity (New Totalities)

If the universe lasts for a sufficient time, it will asymptotically approach a state where all energy is evenly distributed. "That man is the product of causes that had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms; that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can preserve individual life beyond the grave; that all the labors of the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man's achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a universe in ruins- all these things, if not quite beyond dispute, are yet so nearly certain that no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul's habitation henceforth be safely built."

Collected and Edited


The three leitmotifs which the exhibition is exploring were introduced -

Is modernity our antiquity? ("it seems that we are both outside and inside modernity, both repelled by its deadly violence and seduced by its most immodest aspiration or potential: that there might, after all, be a common planetary horizon for all the living and the dead."), What is bare life? ("Bare life deals with that part of our existence from which no measure of security will ever protect us. But as in sexuality, absolute exposure is intricately connected with infinite pleasure.") and What is to be done? ("Today, education seems to offer one viable alternative to the devil (didacticism, academia) and the deep blue sea (commodity fetishism)").

Yason Banal 'Disaster But Disco'

Can you explain a little about the performance element of tonight? What the two half naked tattooed men are doing and your role in it? The performance tonight is quite important, at least to me personally, as I haven`t presented my body 'live' for quite some time. Usually what I show are traces of my performance via photography, video and sculpture, or if done 'live' employ other people/bodies instead. The two guys in the performance resemble sculptures; they are not actors. It continues my interest in masculine stupor and awkward figurines, as well as sleepwalking as an in-between state between reality and the subconscious, stillness and action. Visually, the black strip of electric tape on their eyes and headphones on their ears are very similar to the 'straight' guys you see appearing on amateur Japanese porn. I find this fascinating - the Japanese notion of outer and inner realities (I forgot what they're called) - blocking out 'disasters' and other disturbances to norm, and living in a sort of fantasy 'disco' land. I think its also dangerous, because there is little acknowledgement or tolerance of certain deviations and ideas.

On Anticipation:

In artificial intelligence, anticipation is the concept of an agent making decisions based on predictions, expectations, or beliefs about the future. It is widely considered that anticipation is a vital component of complex natural cognitive systems. As a branch of AI, anticipatory systems is a specialization still echoing the debates from the 1980s about the necessity for AI for an internal model. In 1985, Robert Rosen defined an anticipatory system as follows: A system containing a predictive model of itself and/or its environment, which allows it to change state at an instant in accord with the model's predictions pertaining to a latter instant.

The World's First Successful Prediction of the Indian Ocean Dipole Mode Event (IOD) - Alleviate Social Loss Caused by Floods and Drought:

Frontier Research Center for Global Change (FRCGC) Climate Variations Research Program of Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC; Yasuhiro Kato, President), after leading the way for the world to discover Indian Ocean Dipole Mode Event (IOD *1) in 1999 which causes global abnormal weather, is working on to clarify its generating mechanism as well as performing model experiments using the Earth Simulator toward IOD prediction since 2005. Research Group (Hirofumi Sakuma, Group Leader; Swadhin K. Behera, Sub Leader; Jing-Jia Luo and Sebastien Masson, Research Scientist) led by Toshio Yamagata, program director, with the use of the advanced ocean-atmosphere coupled general circulation model called SINTEX-F1, which was developed under EU-Japan collaboration, succeeded to predict IOD event of 2006 fall from the November of 2005. Through reproduction experiments of past IOD events it is understood that the IOD events are usually predictable 4 months prior to an event. But predictions much earlier have become possible now after the world's first successful prediction of the IOD by the Research Group. A part of this achievement is going to be published in the Journal of Climate of American Meteorological Society. We will continue to help in improving climate predictions by enhancing sparse observational network in the Indian Ocean and by making further improvements in the model and model initialization processes. Such a prediction system will alleviate natural disasters all over the world by sharing our advanced predictions through climate information network.

Alternative DNS roots;

DNS Server becomes an island when a domain controller points to itself for the _msdcs.ForestDnsName domain

A clue to the multiplicity of directions:

Comment s'en sortir', by the French philosopher Sarah Kofman: "Poros refers only to a sea-route or a route down a river, to a passage opened up across a chaotic expanse which it transforms into an ordered, qualified space by introducing differentiated routes, making visible the various directions of space, by giving directions to an expanse which was initially devoid of all contours, of all landmarks. "To say that a poros is a way to be found across an expanse of liquid is to stress that a poros is never traced in advance, that it can always be obliterated, that it must always be traced anew, in unprecedented fashion. One speaks of a poros when it is a matter of blazing a trail where no trail exists, of crossing an impassable expanse of territory, an unknown, hostile and boundless world, an apeiron which it is impossible to cross from end to end ... the sea is the endless realm of pure movement, the most mobile, changeable and polymorphous of all spaces, a space where any way that has been traced is immediately obliterated, which transforms any journey into a voyage of exploration which is always unprecedented, dangerous and uncertain."

This to That, Figure to Ground;

The rectilinear grid is composed of points and consequently lines; a pragmatic means to partition space or standardize elements in space. Because of its numbered nature it too approaches infinity in all directions. It becomes a field; a distribution. This is a sudden shift from its pointed, lined nature to that of something more ambiguous; undifferentiated vastness. It presents problems for what could be called the figure, or object. The discrete is impossible when faced with a field. It might serve better to think of the discrete anomaly then as moments of increased “thisness” or “thatness.”


Traditionally, difference is seen as derivative from identity: e.g., to say that "X is different from Y" assumes some X and Y with at least relatively stable identities. To the contrary, Deleuze claims that all identities are effects of difference. Identities are not logically or metaphysically prior to difference, Deleuze argues, "given that there exist differences of nature between things of the same genus." That is: to say that two things are "the same" obscures the difference presupposed by there being two things in the first place.

David Bohm on event/moment

"We begin by noting that current relativistic theories in physics describe the whole of reality in terms of a process whose ultimate element is a point event, i.e., something happening in a relatively small region of space and time. We propose instead that the basic element be a moment which, like the moment of consciousness, cannot be precisely related to measurements of space and time, but rather covers a somewhat vaguely defined region which is extended in space and has duration in time. The extent and duration of moment may vary from something very small to something very large, according to the context under discussion. As with consciousness, each moment has a certain explicate order, and in addition it enfolds all the others, through in its own way. So the relationship of each moment in the whole to all the others is implied by its total content: the way in which it 'holds' all the others enfolded within it."



via r-echos / socialfiction

Three notes about some aspects of this project (there is a lot more to imagine from it though!): / 1. it is presented as an echo of the immediate history of software and discourse about software (”A blogject is one of those things that has a certain kind of blogger thinking about.”), into the author’s own non-conventional ideas and references. grassroots AI and applied software criticism. / 2. where does a website start and end? how notions like “being inside” and “being outside” works on websites? There are obvious external limits to a website, a link to a different domain leads “outside” of a given website. A website can also be identified as a unique set of similar page thanks to a certain similarity of style, this gives a senses a being inside a website and going “outside” of it when you see pages with different templates. / Using a “limited memory” could be a way to create an internal definition of the extension of a website: we would reach its limits not only because we step inside something else, but because there is no more of its own space. / 3. being a software writing tool, it defines its basic units of writing (”text is stored as a chain of segments”) and test rules for semi-automatic editing.

Red on white. Tyo.

Red on white. Tyo.

Abstraction / Simulation

"Abstraction today is no longer that of the map, the double, the mirror or the concept. Simulation is no longer that of a territory, a referential being or a substance. It is the generation by models of a real without origin or reality: a hyperreal. The territory no longer precedes the map, nor survives it. Henceforth, it is the map that precedes the territory -- PRECESSION OF SIMULACRA -- it is the map that engenders the territory ... It is the real, and not the map, whose vestiges subsist here and there, in the deserts which are no longer those of the Empire, but our own." (Jean Baudrillard - Simulations)

RE: Color and visual strata / discreteness and resolution -

"most notably it was predicted some 20 years before verification that marine fish that live just above the aphotic zone would have only one pigment, and that that one pigment would have a maximal sensitivity down around 450 nm (for us light at this wavelength would appear blue)."

Potential Titles

"Possible Center," "Possible Hole"

Diffusion Tensor Imaging

"Diffusion weighted imaging uses the diffusion of water molecules to probe the directional micro-structure of living tissue. A single diffusion weighted image generally measures diffusivity of water molecules along a particular direction. The amount of diffusion along a direction is detected by destructive interference of different phase signatures created by the magnetic gradient."


"information exchange is the ONLY way to ever get real change."
Throbbing Gristle - Re/Search Magazine 1982

maximum entropy probability distribution

In statistics and information theory, a maximum entropy probability distribution is a probability distribution whose entropy is larger than (or equal to) that of all other members of a specified class of distributions.

If nothing is known about a distribution except that it belongs to a certain class, then the maximum entropy distribution for that class is often assumed "by default", according to the principle of maximum entropy. The reason is twofold: first, maximizing entropy, in a sense, means minimizing the amount of prior information built into the distribution; second, many physical systems tend to move towards maximal entropy configurations over time.

Via Abstract Dynamics

Through out her writing danah constantly invokes a bottom up defense of youth culture. Essentially that the kids are alright they just need space and privacy to develop their own identities. It's an argument I'm totally sympathetic to, but it becomes completely problematic when one realizes that something like MySpace just isn't a traditional bottom-up youth culture situation at all. Rather it's something more like an engine, a structure to contain the bottom up energy and transform it into something else entirely.

The following hexadecimal data are the random bytes you requested. These data were generated by the Fourmilab HotBits radioactive RNG

F 6 4 1 C 9 9 1 D 6 1 D 9 2 4 5 B 7 B 3 D 3 B 0 8 D 5 F 2 C 0 A 1 1 9 3 4 A 6 B 8 E B B 2 4 C 0 4 5 9 8 5 C 1 7 A 6 A 7 F A 6 2 C F A 1 C 9 8 4 E 4 B 6 5 A 0 1 2 7 0 3 C C 5 7 3 5 0 6 9 9 0 2 E 4 0 D 4 6 9 E 6 3 1 6 8 5 6 2 8 6 E 4 2 F 0 2 4 0 7 F 5 6 D C 3 9 8 4 C 7 5 F F 2 E 5 E 1 A D A 5 1 A F 8 C 1 4 B 4 1 2 7 9 9 B A E C 4 9 8 C 6 4 5 8 6 6 D 2 E 7 C 3 5 8 3 1 6 8 A C B 7 F 7 5 D 1 0 1 C 4 6 2 9 7 7 5 F C 1 9 9 E 2 3 3 0 4 4 2 4 5 4 B 8 8 7 2 6 2 5 6 E 5 6 B E 7 9 B B 3 B 2 3 9 A 2 8 0 5 7 F 7 0 2 B F

Instrumental Reason: Thinking out possibilities

And from noise: possibility, potential (and locate virtual [on the superiority of the analog]) Digital as numerical codification; Digital is possibility

To be looked at: compression and noise

Via Diehard test:

"C:\Program files\ENT>ent xored.bin
Entropy = 8.000000 bits per byte.

Optimum compression would reduce the size
of this 410820608 byte file by 0 percent.

Chi square distribution for 410820608 samples is 243.08, and randomly
would exceed this value 50.00 percent of the times.

Arithmetic mean value of data bytes is 127.5014 (127.5 = random).
Monte Carlo value for Pi is 3.141694679 (error 0.00 percent).
Serial correlation coefficient is -0.000020 (totally uncorrelated = 0.0).



"I do not like that presumptuous Philosophy which in its rage of explanation allows no xyz, no symbol representative of the vast Terra Incognita of Knowledge, for the Facts and Agencies of Mind and matter reserved for future Explorers." - Samuel Taylor Coleridge -- via Crystalpunk manifesto

"Concepts are wild (fuzzy) horses." - Joan Watson

re: Acoustic Resonances of Ancient Structures.

"Modern building technology as well as building economics have indeed shown almost total disregard for the fact that human beings need rooms with good, "live" acoustic qualities. I am not talking about technical means of sound proofing and the like. Take the following solutions which are typical for our civilization: people are buried in rooms built out of concrete, and at the same time we are developing highly sophisticated stereo and quadro hifi technologies to allow some sounds to come alive in these spaces. In all the theory of modern architecture we find very little or nothing about the relationship of sound, space, and body. The main concern has been, as we all know, to use architecture and town planning as a means of resolving social conflicts and problems. But even this effort was essentially dominated by the powerful hostility with which the Enlightenment regarded the human body."

Norman White on Mistakology

Every technology has its mistakes and accidents already built in. This insight is not new, but it is still consistently ignored in an approach to technology that demands it to be controllable and safe, functional and useful. Technical dysfunctionality is 'repressed' by modern society, in a Freudian sense. Functional discrepancies between people and machines are called 'human failures' even in cases in which the technology is making impossible demands on its human user. Machines and their mistakes are thus an inexhaustible source of humour and parody.


"... the title adds a whole new dimension to the work, referring as it does to a branch of medieval metaphysics called nominalism and specifically to the writings of the 14th-century Franciscan scholastic and philosopher William of Ockham. Ockham held that abstract concepts such as immortality can only be apprehended by faith, not by reason. He also said that if there were many explanations for a phenomenon, the simplest was the right one to use. You can see what attracted Flavin to his writings."

Random physical phenomena

Many modern random number generators attempt to use some form of quantum-mechanical noise, widely considered to be the gold standard for randomness. (For a discussion of empirical verification of quantum unpredictability, see Bell test experiments). Some phenomena used include:
* A nuclear decay radiation source (as, for instance, from some kinds of commercial smoke-alarms), detected by a Geiger counter attached to a PC.
* Atmospheric noise, detected by a radio receiver attached to a PC
* Thermal or quantum-mechanical noise, amplified to provide a random voltage source. A favored source of noise is avalanche noise generated from a reverse-biased zener diode. The thermal noise from a resistor can also be used.
One approach is to convert the noise source into random bits in a separate device that is then connected to the computer through an I/O port. The acquired noise signal is amplified, filtered, and then run through a high-speed voltage comparator to produce a logic signal that alternates states at random intervals. Care must be taken when amplifying low-level noise to keep out spurious signals, such as power line hum and broadcast transmissions. In some simple designs, this logic value is converted to an RS-232 level signal and sent directly to a computer's serial port. Software then sees this series of logic values as bursts of "line noise" characters on an I/O port. More sophisticated systems may format the bit values before passing them into a computer.
Another approach is to feed an analog noise signal to an analog to digital converter, such as the existing audio input port available on most personal computers. The digitized signal may then be processed further in software to remove any bias.
Some have suggested using digital cameras, such as webcams, to photograph chaotic macroscopic phenomena. A group at Silicon Graphics imaged Lava lamps to generate random numbers. U.S. Patent 5732138 One problem was determining whether the chaotic shapes generated were random -- the team decided that they are in properly operating Lava lamps. Other chaotic scenes could be employed, such as streamers blown by a computer's exhaust fan or bubbles in a fish tank (fish optional). The digitized image will generally contain additional noise resulting from the video to digital conversion process.
One commercial product, Quantis from id Quantique SA, exploits an elementary quantum optics process, sending photons one by one onto a semi-transparent mirror. The mutually exclusive events (reflection - transmission) are detected and associated to "0" - "1" bit values.
Perhaps the most common approach is to use precise timing of the interrupts caused by mechanical input/output devices, such as keyboards and disk drives as a source of randomness. Done carefully (as in, for example, the Yarrow algorithm), enough entropy can be collected for the occasional creation of cryptographic keys and nonces.

Apparent Randomness

Randomness coming from the environment (for example, brownian motion, but also hardware random number generators)

Randomness coming from the initial conditions. This aspect is studied by chaos theory, and is observed in systems whose behaviour is very sensitive to small variations in initial conditions (such as pachinko machines, dice ...).

Randomness intrinsically generated by the system. This is also called pseudorandomness, and is the kind used in pseudo-random number generators. There are many algorithms (based on arithmetics or cellular automaton) to generate pseudorandom numbers. The behaviour of the system can be determined by knowing the seed state and the algorithm used. This method is quicker than getting "true" randomness from the environment.


An accident requires that the event in question was unforeseeable, unlikely or unpredictable.

A criticality accident (also sometimes referred to as an "excursion" or "power excursion") occurs when a nuclear chain reaction is accidentally allowed to occur in fissile material, such as enriched uranium or plutonium. This releases neutron radiation which is highly dangerous to surrounding personnel and which causes induced radioactivity in the surroundings.

Uniform Distributions

The uniform distributions (continuous) are probability distributions such that all intervals of the same length are equally probable.

Uses of the uniform distribution

In statistics, when a p-value is used as a test statistic for a simple null hypothesis, and the distribution of the test statistic is continuous, then the test statistic is uniformly distributed between 0 and 1 if the null hypothesis is true.

Although the uniform distribution is not commonly found in nature, it is particularly useful for sampling from arbitrary distributions.


Randomness should not be confused with practical unpredictability, which is a related idea in ordinary usage. Some mathematical systems, for example, could be seen as random; however they are actually unpredictable. This is due to sensitive dependence on initial conditions (see chaos theory). Many random phenomena may exhibit organized features at some levels.

When working with probability, it is often useful to run experiments such as computational simulations. Many programming languages have the ability to generate pseudo-random numbers which are effectively distributed according to the standard uniform distribution.


A manifold is a mathematical space which is constructed, like a patchwork, by gluing and bending together copies of simple spaces. For example, a circle can be constructed by bending two line segments into arcs which overlap at their ends and gluing them together where they overlap. The motivation for working with manifolds is that you begin with a relatively simple space which is well understood, and build up a manifold, which may be very complicated, from copies of that simple space. By choosing different spaces as base material, different kinds of manifolds can be constructed, such as topological manifolds and differentiable manifolds.

via Cinema 1

Deleuze: "Philosophical theory is itself a practice, just as much as its object. It is no more abstract than its object...So that there is always a time, midday-midnight, when we must no longer ask ourselves 'What is cinema?' but 'What is philosophy?'".

Statistically Improbable Phrases's Statistically Improbable Phrases, or "SIPs", are the most distinctive phrases in the text of books in the Search Inside!™ program. To identify SIPs, our computers scan the text of all books in the Search Inside! program. If they find a phrase that occurs a large number of times in a particular book relative to all Search Inside! books, that phrase is a SIP in that book.

Re: Volcanic civilizations

The Minoans:
Feared the bull, living symbol of the god of the Earth. "The bull dance." Was likely destroyed by a tidal wave caused by one of the largest volcanic explosions in history.

Volcanic events

Santorini eruption "changed the course of history." Point events

Reticular / Information

/"Resembling a net in form; netlike: reticular tissue." /"Cell bodies of the reticular activating system are grouped in the brain stem, just behind the pons and in front of the cerebellum. Their axons reticulate out from there to various parts of the thalamus and cerebral cortex, providing the basis for the area's name. This is an interesting configuration, given that the cerebral cortex is relatively recent with respect to evolution, while the brain stem's design was finalized (or so one would think) long before." /"The reticular activating system is the name given to part of the brain (the Reticular Formation and its connections) believed to be the centre of arousal and motivation in animals (including humans). It is situated at the core of the brain stem between the myelencephalon (medulla) and metencephalon (midbrain). It is involved with the sleep/wake cycle; damage can lead to permanent coma." /"Information is a word which has many different meanings in everyday usage and in specialized contexts, but as a rule, the concept is closely related to others such as data, instruction, knowledge, meaning, communication, representation, and mental stimulus." /".info is a generic top-level domain intended for informative websites, although its use is not restricted. It was a part of ICANN's highly publicized announcement, in late 2000, of a phased release of seven new generic top-level domains (gTLDs)." /"A direct relationship between information and another physical property, entropy, is demonstrated. A consequence is that it is impossible to destroy information without increasing the entropy of a system; in practical terms this often means generating heat."

Sentences regarding windows

/"What I saw that night was like looking at a hologram or window to another dimension."
/"It may be that there exists, in the vicinity of the Bermuda Triangle and certain other nodal locations of electromagnetic gravitational currents, a door or window to another dimension in time or space through which extra-terrestrial sufficiently sophisticated scientifically can penetrate at will."
/"In science fiction, a portal is a window to another dimension."
/"Picard and Data arrive, and Manheim tells them he was able to open a window to another dimension, but when he learns how far the effect has spread, he tells them it must be shut down."


Rows of stars fill the emptiness - or, with their mute reiteration, create a nocturnal emptiness of their own.

from Entropy and the New Monuments

Instead of causing us to remember the past like the old monuments, the new monuments seem to cause us to forget the future. Instead of being made of natural materials, such as marble, granite, plastic, chrome, and electric light. They are not built for the ages, but rather against the ages. They are involved in a systematic reduction of time down to fractions of seconds, rather than in representing the long spaces of centuries. Both past and future are placed into an objective present. This kind of time has little or no space; it is stationary and without movement, it is going nowhere, it is anti-Newtonian, as well as being instant, and is against the wheels of the time-clock.

On the use of color

A gratuitous use of color can be seen as the creation of a device that can be used to see "through" something. It is a surface of excess. Through excess any possibility of information is diminished and the surface collapses inward.

Rocket Tests

In the early 1990s, the Deseret Morning News (then named the Deseret News) discovered that in 1965 a nuclear-powered rocket had been tested at the Nevada Test Site. Bolted down, the engine roared for 10 1/2 minutes, "sending skyward a plume of nearly invisible hydrogen exhaust that had just been thrust through a superheated uranium fission reactor," wrote Lee Davidson, the paper's Washington Bureau chief.
"Three days later, the Atomic Energy Commission found radioactive iodine 131 in town water at Caliente, Nev.," about 90 miles west of Cedar City. An AEC report said the fresh fission products probably came from an open-air nuclear bomb test in China.


Terence McKenna's software plotting the fractals of "novelty" over many thousands of years of earth's history, up to 2012 C.E., at which point novelty will reach the state of infinite fulmination. He defines novelty, of course, as "the density of connectedness" or the "degree of complexity." The I Ching says that Time is a series of identifiable elements in flux. There are 64 of these "elements." He also believes that what we today call the I Ching is but a tiny fragment of a once immense device, now forever lost.

Pattern Recognition

The I Ching is based on a set of binary mathematical permutations, which also underlie what I call the "pure" progression of the Mayan number harmonics - 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, 64. As it is presented to us, however, the I Ching is actually comprised of the combination of eight symbols (trigrams) of three lines, either broken or unbroken, in all possible combinations with each other. By doubling the trigrams, the permutations yield 64 more complex symbolic possibilities of six lines each (hexagrams). By comparison, the zolk'in is based on permutations of thirteen numbers and twenty symbols or Sacred Signs which yield a possibility of 260 permutations. At minimum, each one of the 260 permutations is a combination of one of thirteen numbers, one of twenty signs, and one of four directional positions.

Finally, like the I Ching, the Tzolkin is a system for revealing information relating to a deeper or larger purpose. While the I Ching is precisely synchronized with the genetic code, the Tzolkin is synchronized with the galactic code. As the genetic code governs information concerning the operation of all levels of the life cycle, inclusive of all plant and animal forms, the galactic code governs information affecting the operations of the light cycle. The light cycle defines resonant frequency ranges of radiant energy, inclusive of electricity, heat, light and radio waves that inform the self-generative functions of all phenomena, organic or inorganic. The two codes are obviously interpenetrating and complementary.

The Synergetic Natural Number Continuum

The continuum of base ten number is generally looked upon as a progressive and linear series of cardinal and ordinal numbers. Iterations signify the simple addition of the initial unit to each resulting member encountered in the continuing series of elements known as numbes. The digits 1 - 9 are known as integers or numerals. Of course, multiples of 10, 100, 1000, etc. are formed simply by adding zeros.
Further analysis discloses that this continuum can be viewed as both progressive and regressive. It is not exclusively linear, but has a cyclic function resulting from the terminal character of the last base digit and the next beginning initiated by zero producing the two-digit range. This doubling of number is for all practical purposes a cyclic function that recycles again and again with each ten-fold group produced.
Besides the cyclic and ambidirectional aspects of the number series, there is also a periodic series of reversals that occur in conjunction with the cyclic aspect.

Black Road

The Long Count end date on December 21st, 2012 A.D. highlights an astronomical alignment determined by precession. The alignment occurs when the winter solstice sun conjuncts the crossing point of Milky Way and ecliptic in Sagittarius. This crossing point is where the "dark rift" in the Milky Way is, which was known to the ancient Maya as xibalba be (the Road to the Underworld) or simply "the Black Road." Linda Schele identifies the nearby crossing point of Milky Way and ecliptic as the Mayan Sacred Tree, and the modern Quiche call that spot "Crossroads."

Null Hypothesis (2)

The Maya revered the end-time as a zero point, entered through galactic centre and involving an energy field-effect reversal and rebirth into a new World Age.

Absolute Future

In Lorentzian manifolds, the absolute future of an event A is the region containing all the events which can be reached by traveling from A along a future-pointing null curve or timelike curve.
Absolute past, the dual concept of absolute future or past-pointing curves.

Alternate Hypothesis

The alternate hypothesis, or alternative hypothesis, together with the null hypothesis are the two rival hypothesis whose likelihoods are compared by a statistical hypothesis test. Usually the alternate hypothesis is the possibility that an observed effect is genuine and the null hypothesis is the rival possibility that it has resulted from random chance.

Null Hypothesis

In statistics, a null hypothesis says "there is no phenomenon". It is a hypothesis that is presumed true until statistical evidence in the form of a hypothesis test indicates otherwise. For example, if we want to compare the test scores of two random samples of men and women, a null hypothesis would be that the mean score in the male population from which the first sample was drawn was the same as the mean score in the female population from which the second sample was drawn.

Levels of Nothingness

The next zone is the dysphotic zone, which extends from about 50 meters, or wherever the euphotic zone ends, to about 1,000 meters. In this zone, there is enough light for organisms to see, but it is too weak for photosynthesis to happen. If we were to venture into the dysphotic zone, we could watch the visible light disappear as we traveled deeper. Once we reached the aphotic zone, there would be no light. This zone extends from about 1,000 meters depth to the ocean bottom. Animals in this zone are rare, but they do exist. Think about the thriving hydrothermal vent communities, which live and prosper without sunlight.

Loss of Color

Water particles interact with light by absorbing certain wave lengths (see diagram). First the reds and oranges disappear, later the yellows, greens and purples and last the blue. Loss of the colour red is dramatic and is already noticeable at 50cm! At 5 metres depth some 90% has disappeared.

Surface effects

The shape of the water is decisive on how the light passes through it. Coming from an optically less dense medium (air) and entering a denser one (water), the light is partly reflected back while partly entering the water. Depending on the shape of the water, the light forms crinkle patterns or becomes diffused randomly in all directions.
The amount of light that is reflected upward depends strongly on the height of the sun (place on Earth, time of day and season) and the condition of the sea. A rough sea absorbs more light whereas a mirror-like sea reflects more. In the tropics, the sun stands straight overhead at mid-day, resulting in little loss. In temperate seas during winter, the light diminishes by as much as 3 f-stops immediately under the surface.
As a matter of interest, the reflected light is partly polarised (horizontally) and so is the part that enters the water (vertically). Polarisation is maximal in the early morning and late afternoon when the sun stands low in the sky. The vertically polarised light entering the water makes objects less shiny, more colourful, and can be used creatively, for instance to capture the deep colours of shiny fishes in natural light.


Reich also designed a "cloudbuster" with which he said he could manipulate streams of orgone energy in the atmosphere to induce rain by forcing clouds to form and disperse. Based on experiments with the orgone accumulator, he argued that orgone energy was a negatively-entropic force in nature which was responsible for concentrating and organizing matter. During one drought-relief expedition to Arizona, he claimed to have observed UFOs, and speculated that orgone might be used for the propulsion of UFOs.

Contextual Color

Predecessor Patterns
. . . (none)
Problem Summary
When color is used arbitrarily and gratuitously information is obscured.

Crystal Language

‘Crystallography’ means the study of crystals, but also, taken literally, ‘lucid writing.’ In the intersection of poetry and science, exploring the relationship between language and crystals – looking at language as a crystal, a space in which the chaos of individual parts align to expose a perfect formation of structure. As Bök himself says, ‘a word is a bit of crystal in formation,’ suggesting there is a space in which words, like crystals, can resonate pure form.

Self-reference and the limits of logic

Ancient Greece: Epimenides of Crete: "All Cretans are liars." If he's telling the truth, he must be lying, but if he's lying, then he's telling the truth.
18th century: Barber of Seville: Everyone in town has barber cuts their hair, except those who cut their own hair. Who cuts the hair of the barber?
Late 19th century: A. N. Whitehead: set theory will create universal axiomatic foundation for complete and self-consistent mathematics. B. Russell: What about the set of all sets which do not contain themselves?”
Early 20th century: Vienna Circle: “Principia Mathematica,” (e.g. Logical Type Theory) to remove self-referential paradox.
1931: Godel’s Theorem: Typographical Number Theory created to show that no system can fully represent mathematics unless it is powerful enough to do self-reference, and no system with full self-reference can escape self-contradictory statements. Therefore, there will always be theorems whose truth or falsehood cannot be ascertained in any powerful system of mathematics.


Date: Fri, 12 Jun 1998 10:40:44 -0400
Reply-To: Discussion List on the History of Mathematics , John Conway
From: John Conway
Subject: Re: alogon Comments: To: Jim Propp
Content-Type: TEXT/PLAIN; charset=US-ASCII
On Fri, 12 Jun 1998, Jim Propp wrote:
> How is the word "alogon" (used by Proclus to describe irrationals, as I recall) > best translated? "Unutterable", "illogical", "unmeasurable"? > > That is to say, What was the meaning of "logos" in the context of non-Christian > fifth century Greek philosophy/mathematics?
I continue: it then seems to have acquired the particular sense of "a collection of words There's a long-standing connection between reason and ratio or proportion, and "analogy" is somewhere around here. "alogon" seems to mean something like "unreasonable", "irrational". JHC ", (Gk "lexis"), as in "Lexicon" (original meaning: phrase-book). Latin "Lex" for law, and so the English words like "legal", come off around here. I might mention also "dialectics".
From here we get "writings", passing into "theory" or "study", as in the English "-logy" words. This in turn led to "reasoning", and in particular the English word "logic".

Carl Sagan

Carl Sagan and The Edge of Forever

Entropy and Points

If the universe can be considered to have increasing entropy, then, as Roger Penrose has pointed out, an important role in the disordering process is played by gravity, which causes dispersed matter to accumulate into stars, which collapse eventually into black holes. Jacob Bekenstein and Stephen Hawking have shown that black holes have the maximum possible entropy of any object of equal size. This makes them likely end points of all entropy increasing processes.


"The future has arrived; it's just not evenly distributed." - William Gibson

Henri Bergson - Homogeneous

Time is nothing but the ghost of space haunting the reflective consciousness.

Sonic Fabric

Take an old tape walkman, unscrew the head and remount it on the outside of the plastic housing using silicone. Plug in the headphones, turn the volume all the way up, and press PLAY. Now run the head over the fabric. Works best if you drag it along in the same direction as the tape (as opposed to running it along the warp, which is cotton or polyester).


In his research with the tonoscope, Jenny noticed that when the vowels of the ancient internal languages of Hebrew and Sanskrit were pronounced, the sand took the shape of the written symbols for these vowels, while our modern languages, on the other hand, did not generate the same result. How is this possible? Did the ancient Hebrews and Indians know this? Is there something to the concept of "sacred language," which both of these are sometimes called? What qualities do these "sacred languages," among which Tibetan, Egyptian and Chinese are often numbered, possess? Do they have the power to influence and transform physical reality, to create things through their inherent power, or, to take a concrete example, through the recitation or singing of sacred texts, to heal a person who has gone "out of tune"?

Dragons - Monumentality

"...while I understand those who call for texture and detail, if only for orientation, quite a bit of my journey has involved uncovering the meaning of distance and scale in these spaces. Even now the I find the ambiguity of scale compelling. All of the complex forms are basically shadows, given volume by a combined of 3D math and stereoptic input. The fog simultaneously hides the extent of the forms while revealing the depth of the shapes."


"Then the music changed, these drums coming in, like re were millions of them, ranked backed somehow beyond the walls, and weird waves of static riding in on that, falling back, riding in again, and womens's voices, crying like birds, and none of it natural, the voices doplering past like sirens on a highway, and the drums, when you listened, made up of little snipped bits of sound that weren't drums at all." William Gibson, Virtual Light

Knights of the Lambda Calculus: n.

A semi-mythical organization of wizardly LISP and Scheme hackers. The name refers to a mathematical formalism invented by Alonzo Church, with which LISP is intimately connected. There is no enrollment list and the criteria for induction are unclear, but one well-known LISPer has been known to give out buttons and, in general, the members know who they are...

Something about the conversation in letter format.

Architeuthis (Giant Squid)

Certain keywords: Laboratory, capture, vessels, sustain. Ocean plateau(s)

Progenitor star (star that exploded)

SN 2005cs belongs to a class of exploding stars called "Type II-plateau." A supernova of this type results from the collapse and subsequent explosion of a massive star whose light remains at a constant brightness (a "plateau") for a period of time.


Energy has a shape.
A given amount of energy traveling in some direction for a certain amount of time is called a "vector".
By experimentation it can be demonstrated that the only self-stabilizing combination of vectors is the triangle.
So nature is building everything out of triangles.
For some thing to be called "matter" it must have an inside and an outside, otherwise it is called "radiation".
Anything with an inside and an outside is called a "system".
By experimentation it can be demonstrated that the tetrahedron is the minimum shape or structure that energy can take.
The minimum "thing" or system in the universe has to be a tetrahedron.
Anything less is not a system and does not have the properties of a system.
Systems can be made out of triangles.
By experimentation it can be demonstrated that only 3 basic systems can be constructed out of equilateral triangles: tetrahedra, octahedra, & icosahedra.
Therefore, all of nature must be built up from some combination or multiple of only those three basic systems.
Synergetics is the geometry of energy.

Double horizon plane;

double curvature
approach/transcend limit field.




Terraforming is a process of planetary engineering, specifically directed at enhancing the capacity of an extraterrestrial planetary environment to support life. The ultimate in terraforming would be to create an uncontained planetary biosphere emulating all the functions of the biosphere of the Earth---one that would be fully habitable for human beings.
M.J. Fogg, Terraforming: Engineering Planetary Environments, SAE International (1995).

On a cinematic time machine

The action of the playback propels the viewer backwards and forwards through cinematic time. "The cinematic apparatus" is seen "as an agency to disrupt time." "Time is compressed or stopped inside the movie house, and this in turn provides the viewer with an entropic condition." (Smithson)
The action of the viewer moving in between the two screens is what orients them in their specific time as it telescopes inwards into fractions of a second. The viewer is found stuck in a (or series of) present(s). Their sense of temporal position is split as they control the movement of a mirrored image.
The condition of a perpetual present is more likely a relentless destruction of a point past it. By bringing the recent past into the context of a mirror, or present, and making it an actuality by giving a viewer agency over the timescale of their image, what is left is the presence of a latent anticipation; anticipation existent but not manifest. The future is never realized because it is a cycle of pasts becoming presents; an inescapable moment stretched out, superimposed onto the next. Time stops in between the screens as soon as you enter them.
The structural positioning of the screens and their relational time scales constructs a continuum of time. At the center the viewers movement stops all time and deactivates current experience in favor of possible experience. Moving to another end of the continuum propels them through the sort of anticipatory condition of the moment while the other end essentially catches them.
The screens become memory without content because they are nothing but past-ness emerging as present. In a way it gives the illusion of allowing one to construct their own temporal condition while actually removing any one prior.


Weather Pattern(s)


A pair of structures that exist an inch or so in from the forehead. One on the right side and one on the left side. They have impact on mood. (The right one is active when a person is depressed, and the left one is active when a person is cheerful.) Also, they are associated with fear, and the “fight or flight” response. This is possibly instead mapped to the front and backs of both. Associated with religious experience. Elation / Fear

Enatiamophic Chambers

Smithson dissected the illusion of vision in his “Enantiamorphic Chambers.” He stated: “To see ones own sight means visible blindness” Here the “object” became infinite myopia, equidistant dislocation, the manifestation of the division in the eyes.