When you are young you know the solution, but not the problem; when you are old, you know the problem, but not the solution.

Well, except for those few geniuses born in each generation.

Published in: on July 29, 2011 at 9:22 pm  Leave a Comment  

So far?

Another overcast morning.  I feel as though I must put on the lights to read at 7:16 in the AM.  But that is not what I want to talk about.  What I really want to talk about is mathematics and my obsession with it this year.  (Yes, I am always obsessed with something as you well know by now.)

This is what began all the trouble around 300 BCE.

Euclid’s Fifth Postulate:

That, if a straight line falling on two straight lines make the interior angles on the same side less than two right angles, the two straight lines, if produced indefinitely, meet on that side on which are the angles less than the two right angles.

Thomas L. Heath translator

Twenty-two hundred years later, Gauss, Bolyai, and Lobachevsky had the audacity to negate the postulate and arrive at the conclusion that its consequences produced a geometry as consistent as Euclid’s although containing propositions strange and contrary to Euclid’s.  Several decades later, Betrami and Klein established that if hyperbolic geometry is inconsistent, then so is Euclidean geometry.  Today, hyperbolic geometry produces the richer and more useful geometry for mathematics.

The history of this, its impact on philosophy of mathematics, philosophy in general, the connections between mathematics, science, and art, and how mathematics is an art and creative activity is what I have been working on this year.

It is the best year of my life so far.

Published in: on July 29, 2011 at 8:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Cubs Win!

Yep, once a year, whether I need it not, I go to Wrigley Field and the Cubs win. And I got to sit next to a couple of totally smokin’ broads.

Thanks, Tom.

And thank you, Billy, for the tickets earlier this year. I’ll never forget the woman I met at the park that day who gave me my first dose of the clap. 🙂

Published in: on July 22, 2011 at 5:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

Book Stores

Let’s face it.  Things change.

I just received an e-mail from Border’s that they are going completely out of business.  My local Border’s store closed on January first this year.   I recall when they first opened on the corner of Pierson and Michigan.  They ran all the local independent bokkstores, plus a large Waterstone’s store out of business.  So, Border’s was my go to place to buy books for a long time.

I think their major problem was that they did not get the e-book thing.

Oh well, there is a small footprint Barnes & Noble a few blocks away.  But why would I go their either?  It’s for damned sure I have no more space in my humble abode for another paper book.

Published in: on July 21, 2011 at 10:39 pm  Leave a Comment