Hi, this is the article title.

Thursday, 06 March, Year 6 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

It all started as all good things start these days : on irc, written by people who aren't me. How do you like that ! Oh, you're still dealing with the title... well, what can I tell you, forget about it. One sometimes runs out of titles.

Anyway, check this beauty out :

asciilifeform: The 'time microscope' thing is typical of aging inventors who, by virtue of being cut off from competent peers (either by having none alive, or being on the wrong side of a jail of one kind or another) end up flying off untethered into strange. E.g : Tesla's 'ghost telegraph'.
kakobrekla: I guess misconceptions add up over the years.i

asciilifeform: I don't think this is it at all.ii Rather, this is more like the folks who send binders full of crackpot proofs to maths profs today. If you're unable to interact with an actual community of your peers, you tend to go way off in some strange direction. Sometimes, with interesting results, more often - with none. Another thing about aging inventors - when they become anxious to carry out a 'last hurrah,' the mechanism in their heads that is needed to dis-invest in an unproductive line of inquiry breaks. 'This ghost telegraph! It'll be what I'm remembered for! just needs a little tweaking.'iii
kakobrekla: Heh, good points.

cazalla: What's a ghost telegraph? I cannot find anything on google.iv
asciilifeform: E.g.

asciilifeform: Another similar, but distinct phenomenon is: people who regularly have ideas usually have fat notebooks full of strange. When these get published posthumously, quite a bit of strange is revealed.v E.g. Karl Friedrich Gauss had a big fat binder that contained, among other things, both types of non-euclidean geometry. But it also had a good bit of crap.vi Hard to find good material about an inventor's 'dwarf star' phase, because the real demented folks inevitably pick it up and add flourishes of their own. Some 'idea people' don't have these 'coffin liner' binders, they just publish everything.vii And tend to end badly.viii Oliver Heaviside's notebooks, it is said, stoked a furnace for many years. (Heaviside, the fellow who turned maxwell's equations from 23 in about that many unknowns, into the 4 that we learn in school, and coughed up terms like 'impedance'.) Re: invention, for the impatient: the greatest heroes who ever lived, who none of us are fit even to be beheaded by, had terrible signal-to-noise ratios, because that's simply how it works. The most one can hope for is to get one or two major ideas 'out'.

cazalla: I wonder if people are testing his hypothesis.
asciilifeform: How? See MP's little piece about 'art'.

cazalla: In the binders full of crackpot writings as you mentioned.
asciilifeform: If you dive into the binders, you're almost certainly doomed to be lost in the noise. If you don't believe this, get thee to a dusty book store and buy bucky fuller's 'synergetics' I and II. That was his coffin notebook that some lost soul printed up. More or less unreadable - as they tend to be, using 1000s of terms known only to the dead man.ix After all, he was writing for his own self.x You can try to read this stuff and make sense of it, but more often than not you'll just be 'rorschaching'xi your own mind. There are so many blanks for imagination to fill in, you'll mostly be reading the contents of the blanks.

So now there you go. To quote Art Vandalay, this is the true spirit of Christmas : people being helped by people other than me.

  1. This is a perfectly valid approach to explaining the type of insanity. To understand, consider the problem of dead reckoning :

    If you start at 0,0 and your job is to get to 7,3 then pathfinding is an easy enough task : you need to make 7 X's and 3 Y's, in whichever order. So if at some ulterior point you find yourself at 9,1 you'll know you overdid X and now need to double back. But what if you don't have the ability to "find yourself" ? What if all you have is "turn right 44 degrees and go one day, then turn left 18 degrees and go three days , then turn right 55 degrees..." etc ? You'll be in for a world of hurt, because after a coupla weeks of this treatment you're more likely to find yourself just about to enter your mother, never mind your intended destination. (For a very pleasant in depth discussion of the topic see Nick Szabo's Dead reckoning and the exploration explosion.)

    What's worse for ideal problems (as opposed to real problems) is that while you're (at least in principle) equally likely to err on the left as on the right with the degrees business, you're not equally likely to err on the left as on the right in politics, for instance. Find me the blue voter that's just as likely to go "well I suppose there is some merit in randomly discharging your weapon while hooting" as "well I suppose if it is for their own good, better hop the kids up on pharma". Or, whatever, the red voter that's as liable to come out with "well I guess taking it in the butt isn't the end of the world" as "well I guess if the girl wants to have an abortion it's her right, and not the doctor's business to oppress her with his notions as to whether she is or isn't pregnant". And politics is just the tip of the iceberg, you think it's a notoriously contentious topic because it lets you. It's something your brain feels ready to consider. Just how fucking stupid you are, for instance, isn't something you're at all prepared to even consider, which is why it's such an uncontentious topic : you're very very smart and clever and nice and good, and so is everyone you meet. O wait, no, scratch that one, considering just how fucking stupid they are poses no serious dangers of bruising your own ego. []

  2. Amusingly, yes he does. []
  3. You know that your parents are senile once they stop saying "whoa, that thing I came up was a stupid idea". And that's exactly how your kids will know you're senile too, in due time. []
  4. Talk about asking the right way eh ? []
  5. Amusingly, one'd think the same is the case with Newton, who spent more of his time trying to figure out alchemy and theology than the falling of the bodies and calculus, especially if that one were a "realities" mind (as opposed to "humanities"). Nevertheless, I hold this to be untrue : the man's nonscientific writings are quite fucking brilliant.

    In any event : the curated view of the history of science (and generally, ideas) as presented by textbooks is significantly biased in that it systematically leaves out parts of reality (the very definition of curation, hey). Consequently people who grow up on nothing but manuals develop some pretty fucking strange ideas of how inventor papers are supposed to look (symptomatic for this problem, the general impression that photocopies of such papers sometimes included for "historical flavour" are kind-of unkempt, badly organised and generally putting to shame the neatly delineated textbook discussion.

    You'd think this is only interesting to ninnies that are inexplicably preoccupied with a correct and complete preservation of the history (of ideas), until you happen to realise that the reason your middle class, well mannered, well brought up miss is hooting over Kanye West is exactly of this nature. Gotta let the girl get dirty, and preferably starting at a very young age. It'll be a lot easier for the both of you this way. []

  6. As far as anyone knows.

    No, seriously, this is important. []

  7. You know, like I do. []
  8. Fuck you. []
  9. And you thought you had it hard with Trilema's 100s. You have it easy, buster. []
  10. And so should you. []
  11. Ie, giving yourself ink tests, which is to say : whatever output your brain comes up with "from reading" those things has more to do with your brain than the things. Which is why good education starts with getting the kids to SHUT THE FUCK UP because NOBODY CARES WHAT THEY "THINK" and they, personally, are worthless shitbags. (Here's a great example of the process actually working out in practice.) It may ruin their "self esteem", but self esteem is roughly unrelated to anything of import. It may, however (especially when solidly backed into a wide array of hickory switches prominently displayed on the walls) get their stupid brain to stop talking long enough for them to actually have a chance at understanding what's going on.

    And to make your pleasure : the stupid way is typically feminine, it's what gossip is all about - two girls enjoying a half an hour together each talking her own narrative undisturbed. Undisturbed by the anthropocentric paternalistic oppressive and chauvinistic culture invented by men to... reign in... idiots... which is to say... women and children. True story. []

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6 Responses

  1. It would be a mistake to decide, from this, that coffin notebooks aren't worth reading - they certainly are! But not for a mere archaeologist. Quod licet Jovi... This is squarely a 'must be this tall to ride' situation.

    I'm told that Gauss's coffin liner is still in the process of being typeset and printed, even now. You can probably get to it, and perhaps ought to take a peek. 'Crap' should be understood as 'proofs with apparent mistakes.'

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 6 March 2014

    Either as that or as Cthulhu.

  3. If you hadn't already guessed - I am personally quite guilty of the kind of wanton 'forest destruction' described in the quoted log. Despite having a computer.

  4. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Friday, 7 March 2014

    I think, if you care for the comparison, that it could be productively represented as a sexual matter.

    Sexuality as a human behaviour is not, obviously, a matter of reproduction, in that over time it has become parasitised by all the mechanisms that construct what we call "civilisation" but would more proper be called politika, in loving memory of Aristotle's observation re bios and zoe. (In short, the entirety of the construction distinguishing man from beast dangles from our schlongs*, which is precisely why it was so important for the ancient Greek that statues are smallish in the loins. Largesse there connoted animality, you see, and so Hercules himself had to carry around a threee inch thing my cat could comfortably fit.)

    So now : consider the earlier discussion of the bitches I took out for a nude stroll in the snow. Why was it me doing it rather than my neighbour ? You can't ask me this, not really, but you can ask the neighbour, and he'll definitely tell you : because it's dangerous. That's right, he cares for the bitches' safety, and for their comfort. What if someone in the outskirts of the polis, some hoi polloi (which, obviously, is not what my neighbour is, in his own worldview) pounces on them and rapes them!!1 ? (And what if they like it ?) What if they catch their death of cold, barefoot in the snow, their cunt circulation working in such overdrive any snow touching it sublimates outright&immediately ? He's an asshole because he cares.

    The real answer, obviously, is that he doesn't feel comfortable doing his business in the public eye (and neither do the sort of women that'd consider him, one at a time). The dogs we met, being not people, had the normal curiosity of "what is this strangely dressed human of a delicious age and strangely nubile form". Well, perhaps minus the nubile part, I really doubt dogs manage to evaluate female humans for sexual fitness any more than I can evaluate pigeons. Apparently they pick somehow, but I have absolutely no idea how and it all makes no sense to me.

    Anyway : the people we met, being as they were well socialised zoa politeiai of a more advanced age, and serious and responsible enough to afford pets in a poor pesthole, and much more importantly : serious and responsible enough to afford to aspire - because anyone can feed a dog, they existed somehow in medieval times and survived all famines to date, yet few can afford to do with their dogs what they saw the emperor do (on tv, of course), which apparently is taking them for walks in the forest and feeding them canned food - (leaving aside the "and stupid enough to aspire to such crap" part) couldn't. Wouldn't. Shouldn't. Won't. Didn't.

    Because that's what the whole fucking thing is based on, obviously, "you can come visit my apartment just as long as you don't..." and "you can put it a little in just as long as you won't...". That's civilisation : teaching people not to X Y Z allows you to pack the sardines closer in together, and this closeness breeds complexity which for the untrained eye irrigated by blood that's never seen testicles may well count as superiority. Because what would you rather have, a truely complex wristwatch that keeps horrible time or an hourglass that is never wrong ? ***

    A child taking out his cock his penis his хуй and jacking off right before his father - perhaps splotching some splooge*5 on his greatcoat - is the ultimate, the absolute, the definitive antisocial act**, and he's definitely getting castrated for it. Taking a nude slut to your grandmother's aniversary party, or I guess in the English space Thanksgiving dinner, that'd be it. "Hi Mom, hi Dad, hey there Bob, Susan sonicetoseeyou. This is Candy and this is Brandy, they're my slavegirls. Strip, yo!" Everybody would be "uncomfortable", right ? Which is just a way to say "everyone'd be forced to evaluate what they're doing with their lives, and perhaps whether they're wasting same." Uncomfortable indeed.

    Would their discomfort, well deserved and well earned for being dickless fuckwits, all of them bother you, too ? Would it be uncomfortable for you that they're uncomfortable ? After all, you love them, they're your family, which reduces to saying "we had a pact, you know!"

    So now, there it is : that's why. I write - and publish! - whatever crosses my mind because I solidly, and amply, despise the general public. Because I have as a matter of course constructed my own imperium, and my own auctoritas. Both, not just one. From the crenelated towers of that miniature fortress I can observe the strange mores of foreign people as strange mores of foreign people. Gauss doesn't publish - and what's more! doesn't write!!! - whatever crosses his mind because he doesn't feel that way. Let alone whether he is or could be, that's besides the point. He probably would have had a better shot than I ever will, but that's besides the point : any dog could walk his master, and any child could make his father go in the leash, on hands and knees, to fetch the ball. Few if any do. Why ?

    And hence all the bullcrap about anonymity. O herpderp, they're anonymous online and therefore free men. No women, women can't exist anonymously. And since we're on that topic : men either. What's left ? Oh, they can be free fifteen year olds online, and that was the best time of their life anyway, so... yeah ? Sweet. Technical solutions to political **** problems, don't you know. It's gonna work one of these days </sarcasm>.

    * I can write a novel about why I chose that particular word, and I will. I could have said "penis", like I'm some sort of хуйless university professor. But I did not want to do that, because that's not what I am. Or I could have said "cock", like the sort of hillbilly consumerist law-abiding Лох that really believes the word for rooster is an adequate replacement for his penis. You know, the word a replacement for the actual thing. Or I could have said dick, which is obscure enough to allow me an exit out of the net of "we would like you to use our words so that then you may be limited to considering problems we are ready to consider, and pick among the solutions we feel comfortable with". Schlong is merely one step further down that way, it's "the word those weird people use for the thing".

    ** No, not fucking his mother, not killing his father. Nobody in his right mind would be interested in the old prune, and besides - we know she's a slut anyway, don't we. And as to killing one's father - that is a sign of failure. You want your father, collared and naked, suckling your toes. Doing your bidding. Enslaving your father is the point, and killing him merely shows you've failed. Which is why people rarely kill their fathers, and frequently put them in homes. Which is why the movies my dickless, dog-keeping compatriots watch often include this touching scene with the grown man and his father - gotta establish the cool of the protagonist somehow, right ?

    *** The problem is drastically complicated by the fact that Sparta was defeated, not just by the Empire of Mindless Zombies (aka Parthia) but even by the United States of Athens. And for that matter, the Sioux and Iroquois and other Indians (the other sort) bit it from the complex-if-castrated group something fierce. Turns out it's expensive to be a man, and even more expensive to be free. Who knew ?

    **** Obviously that means psychiatric. There's no political problem at all outside of a translation of the shared insanity of groups of unhealthy minds.

    *5 Wouldn't you say it's funny that English can't even say pula, at all, but it has ~500 different terms for ejaculate, like the fucking Eskimos' snow : whether it's fresh or caked, dried or scented, they do motherfucking describe that juice. The thing it came out of, however... god help us. The situation is exactly reversed in Romanian, or at least it was, until this last generation of 15yo fuckwits living the life in the global soup of nothing online.

  5. This epic reply really gnaws at the leather straps of the English language!

    If you were to switch to Russian, you could handily edge out the mega-writer 'Беркем аль Атоми.' He is best described as titanic alien hybrid of D. Orlov and of this post; the take-home message of Berkem's works is 'I am a Viking and you should too.'

    As I understand, all men either are either: already 'vikings' - or wish they were! And if wishes could somehow retroactively fix upbringing, we would all be! Yet most are stuck somewhere in between. But who doesn't like to read about heroes! Check out what manages to pass for viking in the godforsaken English-speaking wastelands (search for 'Roissy' et al.)

    The adventure in the snow (and other great examples from your works) aren't simply a matter of raw courage. One needs actual, specific talents, just as for scything down Maxwell's Equations to four. It isn't simply a matter of wanting it enough.

    There is a whole horde of folks who have made an elaborate quest of trying to build a kind of ad-hoc cybernetic prosthesis for their missing viking upbringing. Why do they do this, even though it is impossible? I suspect that it is generally done as a last-ditch temporary alternative to fellating their Nagants. Because - have you ever considered the question of what precisely ought to be done by folks who come to agree with your point, but do not have your talents? At least some have mathematics, etc. to distract themselves with.

    Perhaps there is some honourable use for folks who are not viking-enabled. By all accounts, Tesla, Heaviside, etc. couldn't figure out how to fuck anybody at all. World is a little bit more complicated than 'real vikings vs. reddit eunuchs.' Would you prefer that mr. H or T had gone straight to the biodiesel boiler?

  6. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Saturday, 8 March 2014

    Two things here. One is the biodiesel boiler thingee. Why ? I don't see a good reason to off a fox in that the fox isn't more like a wolf, or that he' too red (foxes are supposed to be red!) or that he's too cute or not manly enough. So it's cute and unmanly, what of it ? Who said vixens are supposed to be surly or bitchy (in the wolfish sense of that term) or anything ?

    And this problem isn't resolved by mere nominalism, either, it's not just that "fox" is a registered "thing to be" (who keeps the registry ?) whereas the rabbit with horns is not.

    I really don't see a problem with either the fox, the wolf or the horned rabbit. I wouldn't personally want to be one, I won't likely instruct any of my slaves to be one (well, maybe except for the vixen part, or the bitch part, or... heh whatever).

    Obviously if the rabbit with horns starts making noises about how everyone should tape horns to their head so "he has a sporting chance" and "check your unhorned privilege" he's getting set in concrete and run over with a slow moving, heavy piece of machinery. And if the fox spends his entire day waxing lyrical about how much he dislikes being a fox she's getting laughed into the ground to the point of developing an eating disorder and hopefully dieing a very painful, miserable death because of it. But other than these kinda considerations... who cares, really. So it's a fox. Let it be.

    The other is the "should". Why the fuck on wheels should a beta male strive to be a "viking" or "tatar" or whatever the fuck people keep naming this thing ? It's hard being an alpha. It's difficulty. It's *expensive*. It's not for everyone, nor should it be. In most cases it's undesirable. All kindergartens all over the world have those little chairs made for children to sit comfortably in, that you could never sit on. Guess why ? Because it is god damned uncomfortable for a three year old to sit in your chair, that's why. His feet dangle. He has to ask you to raise him up and plonk him down there every time he wants to sit down. He has to jump and carefully coordinate his landing on the ground every time he's done sitting and wants to take a walk. Or a leak. It's inconvenient beyond measure, why all the pretense ?

    In closing : there's way too much improving other people's lives going on these days, there's way too much "rational processes" being applied to fundamentally irrational, fundamentally private, fundamentally individual and independent matters. If you think a spoon smells funny you're going to throw it in the wash rather than eat your icecream with it, regardless how I "prove" to you, "rationally", that the spoon is just fine. There's no argument that'll ever make a pair of uncomfortable shoes fit you comfortably, even should the salesgirl on her knees bring out laser measurements and standards-compliance paperwork coming out her wazoo. There's no correct way to fuck your girlfriend, there's no "better" way to cook your breakfast, there's no "scientific" way to curl up in bed. Those things work for agriculture, and animal husbandry and metal processing because we don't care about individual grains and sheep and hunks of iron.

    I wish the industrial revolution happened in a country less fucktarded in the head than England, there are plenty of islands out there that could have done much better. Actually... I suspect pretty much anyone'd have been a better choice.

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