Posts

September 16, 2014

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1:58 PM | How the curtains came down on Calcutta’s professional theatre
Saikat Majumdar at Caravan: THE 1980S WERE A BLEAK TIME in the Communist-ruled state of West Bengal, with the economy a strangled mess of unemployment and industrial lock-outs. Being an intellectual in Bengal very much overlapped with being on the...
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1:55 PM | in donetsk
Keith Gessen at The London Review of Books: I decided to leave Donetsk after seeing a man getting shoved into the trunk of a car by a group of armed men in fatigues. ‘Get the fuck in there, blyad’!’ one...
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1:51 PM | William S Burroughs and the hallucinogenic vine yagé
Andrew Lees at The Dublin Review of Books: In 1953, two years after he had shot Joan Vollmer, his common-law wife, in a drunken William Tell routine at the Bounty Bar in Mexico City, William Seward Burroughs embarked on a...
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11:00 AM | Tuesday Poem
To understand war you have to understand that war is a political tool meant to terrorize as well as kill. It's an insanity always claiming some god's sanction—Anon. To Just Nothing This is what the war ended up being about:...
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7:21 AM | What makes a mathematical proof beautiful?
(Cross-posted at NewAPPS)In December, I will be presenting at the Aesthetics in Mathematics conference in Norwich. The title of my talk is Beauty, explanation, and persuasion in mathematical proofs, and to be honest at this point there is not much more to it than the title… However, the idea I will try to develop is that many, perhaps even most, of the features we associate with beauty in mathematical proofs can be subsumed to the ideal of explanatory persuasion, which I take to be the […]

September 15, 2014

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5:10 AM | Civil War
by Gerald Dworkin By some strange coincidence, the Chancellors of the two Universities at which I spent the longest periods of my career-- University of California and University of Illinois--have turned into poster children for current administrative cant about free...
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5:05 AM | A Mathematician Plays Battleship and Saves Lives
by Jon Kujawa Emmanuel Candes of Stanford University was a plenary speaker at the recent International Congress of Mathematicians. By chance I saw Candes speak several years ago at an American Mathematical Society meeting. Truthfully, Candes work is miles away...
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5:00 AM | Monday Poem
Add 30 Seconds add 30 seconds to anytime, what’s that interval? hell, double it what’s that? have you ever had a day that lasts three or one that goes so fast it’s past —instantly? are those durations short or long,...
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4:55 AM | Divine Hiding?
by Scott F. Aikin and Robert B. Talisse The case for God's existence is unsuccessful. Theistic arguments either beg the question, or involve deductive fallacies, or don't really prove what they promised to. Furthermore, the atheistic arguments all seem decisive...
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4:50 AM | A Rank River Ran Through It
by Liam Heneghan It says something about a city, I suppose, when there is heated debate over who first labeled it a dirty place. The phrase “dear dirty Dublin”, used as a badge of defiant honor in Ireland’s capital to...
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4:45 AM | Perceptions
Jamie Wyeth. The Thief. 1996. More here and here.
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4:40 AM | Dadland
by Tamuira Reid "My daddy stays in that building? Not a house?" I'm glad it looks more like an office building and less like a hospital. My son has lived in a city long enough to know what a hospital...
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4:35 AM | Builders and Blocks - Engineering Blood Vessels with Stem Cells
by Jalees Rehman Back in 2001, when we first began studying how regenerative cells (stem cells or more mature progenitor cells) enhance blood vessel growth, our group as well as many of our colleagues focused on one specific type of...
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4:30 AM | Shade
by Shadab Zeest Hashmi Allahu Akbar or God is Great, the anthem stolen by the wicked terrorist, whose attack is aimed at life, what holds life together for me— the zikr: Allahu Akbar, God is Greater, greater than prayer, greater...
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4:25 AM | The Implications of Gender Controlled Social Space on Campus Sexual Assault
by Kathleen Goodwin In recent months a spotlight, or rather a searchlight, has been shone on college campuses throughout the United States as both administrators and state and federal governments have finally been goaded into taking action to address the...
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4:20 AM | The View From Nowhere
by Misha Lepetic "Well, I haven't been there yet, and shall not try now." ~ Conrad, Heart of Darkness Marlow, the protagonist of Conrad's Heart of Darkness, remorsefully blames an old obsession with maps for his eventual captaincy of a...
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4:15 AM | CATSPEAK
by Brooks Riley
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4:10 AM | Is Wine Tasting Nonsense?
by Dwight Furrow Wine tasting has become one of the favorite playthings of the media with articles appearing periodically detailing a new study that allegedly shows wine tasters to be incompetent charlatans, arrogantly foisting their fantasies on an unsuspecting public....
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4:05 AM | Looking Through Glass
by Madhu Kaza In the borrowed apartment where I'm living for a while, on the top floor of a brownstone, a stone Buddha sits on a low table in front of a center window. The crowns of trees some thirty...
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3:47 AM | Short skirts and niqab bans: On sexuality and the secular body
Jennifer A. Selby and Mayanthi L. Fernando in The Immanent Frame: Introduced in Québec in March 2010, Bill 94 proposed requiring women to unveil their faces if they wanted to work in the public sector or access public services, including...
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2:25 AM | Crude dredging of the scientific literature
I am always amazed at how some people will crudely misrepresent the scientific literature in their efforts to pretend their particular political agenda is scientifically valid. The way they will dredge the scientific literature searching for studies they can quote and … Continue reading →

September 14, 2014

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9:37 PM | How space is born (0)
This opens a new series of posts, which will turn us back to the “computing with space” theme, the main interest here at chorasimilarity. Look again at the move R2 of graphic lambda calculus.   The epsilon and mu are, originally, elements of a commutative group. Suggestions have been made repeatedly that the commutative group […]
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5:35 PM | Evolution’s Random Paths Lead to One Place
Emily Singer in Quanta Magazine (photo by Sergey Kryazhimskiy): In his fourth-floor lab at Harvard University, Michael Desai has created hundreds of identical worlds in order to watch evolution at work. Each of his meticulously controlled environments is home to...
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5:29 PM | Reflections on the Independence Referendum
As we approach the referendum on Scottish independence, several pieces reflect on its meaning and implications. Tariq Ali, John Burnside, T.J. Clark, Linda Colley, David Craig, Tom Devine, Norman Dombey, Anne Enright Colin Kidd, Ross McKibbin, Ferdinand Mount, Tom Nairn,...
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5:19 PM | This Isthmus of a Middle State
Robert Paul Wolff over at his website: One must indeed have turned a deaf ear to the chatter of the public square not to have heard the constant invocation of The Middle Class. Politicians, pundits, bloggers, even economists speak of...
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5:15 PM | How Corrupt Are Our Politics?
David Cole reviews Zephyr Teachout's Corruption in America: From Benjamin Franklin’s Snuff Box to Citizens United, in the NYRB (photo by Lauren Lancaster): The US attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, is now investigating whether the...
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5:08 PM | The Death of Adulthood in American Culture
A.O. Scott in the NYT Magazine: TV characters are among the allegorical figures of our age, giving individual human shape to our collective anxieties and aspirations. The meanings of “Mad Men” are not very mysterious: The title of the final...
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4:13 PM | Cinema Europe I: Where It All Began
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4:12 PM | Dziga Vertov: Soviet Toys (1924)
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4:10 PM | death carol by walt whitman
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