remix3: (ferret!!)
Ferret study



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Very tired and drained. The pieces are not coming together tonight.

Don't think I did so well on my diffy q. :( Partly my slowness at leaning, partly the professor's fault for being an atrocious lecturer. Seriously, if he didn't have tenure, he'd be gone. Or at least he should be. Meh. Whatever. If I need to I can retake it in the summer, I hope.

I think I'll lay down, listen to Bond, maybe read a book, then hopefully pass out. The only problem is the book I'm on is an historical, what-if book set in the 80's when the nuclear showdown actually happened, so it's very enervating and dreary. A small band of survivors on a tanamaran out at sea...don't really want to get into that tonight...
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Let's see. What happened. Not much. Just going through the motions. Almost done. Wondering how it will be when I get back. Dreaming of joining the Merchant Marine. Want to take swing lessons when I get back, play hackeysack in the town square, chill, but I can't do that. Have Navy school to go to. Should I buy a ticket to Portland to go pick up some stuff or wait? Should I visit some friends in Europe before I start school? Maybe Grandma in DC? Who knows. Just kinda low on the energy totem pole. Recording this, because, well, just because. I don't want to read, I don't want to work, I don't want to watch movies, I just want to finish. Keep going! I always get demotivated near the end, and am susceptible to wanting to quit.

This is fun and short.

http://www.thuleroadtrip.com/thule_trail/thuleTrail.html
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You know, I have a hard time explaining why these things matter.

The above statement should be the subtitle for my journal. It's just interesting.

http://judson.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/05/19/math-and-the-city/

Talks about how the ratios found in living things' energy use mimic that found in cities.
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Nothing much. My little brother is reading my books! :) <3 <3

I have most of my good books stored back home in our barn. He must have explored and taken some of them. He said he's reading the book on the Kundalini and the chakras. I would love it if he gets more interested in those things. That's such a fun subject when you are a teenager. Too bad we eventually turn away because there is no way to measure that energy and so it is essentially a useless field until we can. I also liked the books on astral projection; that would be SO. FUN.

Thinking about laptops and researching them. Dreaming of the future; being a DJ at KPSU, working as a merchant mariner, being a high school math teacher, playing the Sims 3 when it comes out...good times. :)

I'm going to post a photo of my bookshelves back home in Portland. You on my friend's list should do the same.

MEME GO! )
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Nicholas Cage is Jimmy Stewart.

--

In other news, nothing is happening. Finished realMYST. Fun. Will probably go for a long walk once my food settles and listen to a course by the Teaching Company. Sigh.
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Keira kinda looks like Aubrey Hepburn (except one eye is higher than the other and she has a different mouth and jawline).
Brad Pitt looks like James Dean. AND HAS THE SAME ATTITUDE. IT'S LIKE HE WAS REINCARNATED. WHOA.

Yeah, I'm bored. The glasses turned out to be shitty so I'm returning them. Have been playing Myst but it makes my back hurt to lay down on my belly. GAH LOVE MYST. So I'm popping ibuprofen and standing up. I may walk later if my ankle is cool with it.

Ho hum. Just thought I'd update.
remix3: (algebra)
Science compared to art. The two spheres are complementary but often seem to have conflicting goals.

Science pursues decomposition, to establish separate categories for each phenomenon encountered. It seeks to categorize and organize to enhance understanding. An example of this is the periodic table. Each element has a specific name, weight, main effect, etc.

More abstractly, science attempts to establish that each phenomenon has exactly one cause. It seeks to then name this cause. Again, we see the proof of this tendency in the exhaustive language of science, where each abstract element of the system has it's own name, be it a Latin name of a zoological creature or a chemical compound (sooo many names).

Art, on the other hand, is less concerned with boiling down results to one cause and identifying it. Indeed, it celebrates multi-faceted abstract concepts that defy simple categorization. It is often seen to be an example of the artist's skill when they combine many different interpretations into one work of art; just one meaning would be seen as an inferior work of art. They rather view it as a geometric progression; the more different meanings one can stuff into a work of art, the more critically successful the work is. An example of this is writing; words are abstractions that contain many different connotations and thus layers of meaning. Artist love to throw together different abstract concepts and seek meaning and beauty in the overlap. This is partly why myths carry such power; they deal with multiple meanings and lessons, not just the immediate one. If the author was interested in just one meaning, they would write a technical manual.

Indeed, this is why human languages are decried as not being specific enough for science and math. They are too ambiguous, cry the scientists, have too many meanings to effectively hold a technical discussion without confusion.

So, science seeks to simplify, art to complicate. Science is order, art is chaos. Science is man, art is nature. Science is Republican, art is Democrat. Science is a specialized surgical tool, art is a Swiss army knife.

Of course, both science and art don't fit into these simplistic definitions even close to all the time. Don't feel like throwing out examples right now though. Ouch, standing!

Goddamn it. I have the concepts, I just don't have the artistic skill to arrange them into a meaningful, cohesive or attractive arrangement. Bah. More work to do.

--

In other news, I'm busy lolling around and not doing a damn thing. Seriously. I need to schedule a dental cleaning, but I can't do it at PSU because I won't be taking enough credits next term to qualify. So I need to find a reliable local dentist in PDX. I'm sure there are tons. Tomorrow.

I've ordered these (http://www.zetronix.com/product_info.php?products_id=62) so I can lay down and still Internet (and game). That way I don't have to stand up and hurt my ankle or sit down and hurt my back. One more month to get healed up completely!
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What is the difference between justice and vengeance? Is justice vengeance? Is vengeance unjust justice?
remix3: (Default)
We need filters and playpens. There are waaaaay too many humans out there to potentially interact with, and we need filters. Unfortunately, most of us end up using stereotypes as filters. Bad juju. Filtering by values leads to sameness of viewpoints and lack of diversity; real community needs diversity to challenge us and make us accept differences. We need PHYSICAL limitations, restrictions on our mobility. An example; traveling by air is nice but impersonal. You are never stuck with anyone for a long amount of time, and it's over pretty quickly. Greyhound takes a LOT longer, and one tends to talk more to people at bathroom and meal stops. (I LOVE GREYHOUND SO MANY GOOD STORIES) This is a chance to build a rapport. You subconsciously recognize that you are going to be with these people for a looooong time, so you don't mind spending that time getting to know them. Not so with planes; I'm annoyed when someone tries to talk to me during a flight because we don't have enough interaction to be that familiar.

Physical filters keep us interacting with the same smaller group of people over and over again, rather than a continuous stream of new people. Think about the computer game The Sims 2. What people continually walk by your house, giving you a chance to get to know them? Your neighbors. When you go to a community lot, who do you run into? Your neighbors. Over and over again, you encounter the same people, giving you a chance to raise your relationship score and Make WhooHoo in the clothing booth. Wait. Overextending the metaphor there. Point is. We rarely have this frequency with anyone but our work mates. Not even our FAMILY gives us this encounter frequency when we move out.

Etc, etc, but I'm tired of standing and I might be able to sleep soon, so that's it.

--

We are all operating under the illusion that we have enough time in our lives to complete everything we want to do. This is a falsity. We don't have close to enough time. I feel there is so much work to be done towards understanding this world, that were I to encounter an untimely death, I would want to be reincarnated (with a way to download all the previous knowledge and understanding I had accrued in the previous life) even given all the shit I'd have to go through again. However, I would only want to go through it again were I given the GUARANTEE that I would remember all the knowledge from my previous life ("OK, where was I...oh yes, the biological empathy limit of the human brain and the resulting social consequences...").
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This cracks me up every time I see it, so I figured I'd copy it here to remember it. From polynomial's journal.

Hehehehehe surveys r dumb (and so am I for finding this funny) )
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WOWOWOW I'M IN LOVE WITH WORDLE THANKS TO YOU MS WRING.

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I typically make extreme claims on one side or the other of an issue in order to throw the points into sharp relief. Namby-pamby wishy-washy viewpoints make little impact in the mind of a reader. Everything I claim is subject to revision upon further reflection.
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Environment is primary.
Individual will is secondary.

You disagree?

When you use your will, you either escape a toxic environment or create your own. Thus will is really a tool you CAN use to create a positive environment, either a personal mental space or a physical, real-world environment. Most times, will without the resulting environment to support it, fails.

Examples: You escape the toxic one by changing your life circumstances (ie, selling your car and biking to work in order to lose weight). You create your own environment when you buoy yourself along with a positive attitude and motivation towards reaching your goals (ie: you want to lose weight, so you listen to motivational tapes, read motivating books, and join a dieting group).

Either way, you create an environment in which you can succeed. If you are in the correct environment, your chances for success are greater.

The hero stories we hear are inspirational, aren't they? They hold up heroes as ideals, don't they? Kinda convenient how the stories only last two hours, isn't it? Did you know 90 to 95 percent of diets fail to keep the weight off long-term? (I'm just repeating that; I haven't confirmed it.) The point is, your will power alone is not enough to create success unless it results in a positive real-world environment.

I'll assess each combination of will and enviro.

Good environment + no will = moderate chance for success. Still need will to really succeed, otherwise you are coasting along, supported by the environment. Biking to work is a good example, as you are forced by your environment (no car) to pursue your goals, change your habits, etc.

Good enviro + good will = best chance for success.

No enviro support for goals + good will = little chance. You can't breathe without air, you can't swim without water, and you can't lose weight when you are alone at home, hungpy, bored, and faced with a freezer full of ice cream and a cupboard full of Oreos. Mmmmmm, ice cream and Oreos...

no enviro + no will = dur. Only including this category to be thorough.

ALLLLLL sorts of challenges contain both of these elements; environment and will. I propose that the pattern I have established above fits EVERY challenge/problem in life.
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I can completely agree with the fact that we have not evolved to fit our modern science and world. That's why we need to tailor our society to fit humans, not humans to fit society. We should be the end goal of our society. God this thought brings up so many exceptions, though...

Humans Evolved to Fear Snakes, Not High-Risk Mortgages or Risks at Traffic Lights  )
remix3: (Default)
Best bumper sticker seen today: Wag more. (then, in small type below it) Bark less.

--

The argument has been made that society's increased materialism and all it's associated sins can be traced back to the death of God, for when man began his denial of the existence of God, he had no choice but to embrace materialism as his idol. Science has forwarded the ideals of efficiency and material advancement, and we have followed the signposts, lured by increased physical pleasure and freedom from physical pain. The path continues to a place where efficiency will rule over human freedom, where the social contract swells to include a greater percentage of our lives. An efficient society requires caretakers and administrators, and human freedom is so messy and unpredictable.

Just venting. I don't seriously subscribe to such a philosophy, I just enjoy indulging my fire-and-brimstone tendencies towards the dramatic.

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December 2009

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