All posts for the month October, 2003

ACMS – A trackback link from “Point of Beginning” the newsletter of the American Congress of Mapmakers and Surveyors (ACMS), and a Viewpoint article by Frank Hissong on cultural change and the value of agility in surveying and mapmaking in the digital world. Intrigued because of the references to Tom Peter’s with whom I updated links recently.

Some snippets – Irrationality really is better. Avoid “rational / comprehensive models”, they don’t work. Ready, Fire, Aim – said Peters yonks ago – likening business to a guided missile. We need to “move faster and faster until the thrill of the speed overcomes the fear of death” says Hunter S Thompson. Leap of faith. Tipping point. It’s all there, all completely counter-intuitive, but essential for successful business. [See Manifesto]

(Interesting for me to follow the ACMS link further – my father used to be a cartographic surveyor – all their little stories and competitions about “throwing a chain” and pacing a distance and estimating an angle rang bells. Is it an art or a science ? Should we make any distinction ? Is this “Rta” or plain old Quality ?)

John Gregg’s Consciousness Site – An interesting site sharing some common (non-Pirsig) threads with Psybertron. Thanks to Meredith Gregg’s interest in Pirsig for the link.

[Post Note : And this closes the loop of links from Pirsig to Chalmers through John Gregg and Gregg Rosenberg. Well, well, well. And with Chalmers Hofstadter influence and the latter's Zen sympathies, this gets more interconnected all the time.]

Re-reading Michael Talbot – (Can’t believe it’s 3 weeks since I last posted – been so busy with the day job recently – anyway ….)

I’ve re-read Michael Talbot’s “Mysticism and the New Physics” in the last few days – it’s only 130 pages plus afterwords. This was the first book I read that explicitly linked the two concepts in its title. He completed writing it before Capra’s “Tao of Physics” in 1976 (which I’ve not read yet), but didn’t get it published until 1981. Apart from a survey of all things “out-of-body”, Zen and Tantric, it builds on John Wheeler’s (Princeton) work on the philosophical consequences of Quantum Physics. It remains an amazing eye-opener – the book that led me to realise perhaps I really should read Pirsig’s Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance - the rest is history, though the two books couldn’t be more different.

One thing that I didn’t realise first time round, and as a result I owe the British Computer Society Quantum Computing group an apology, was the significance of Holography / Holochory. [See here] [and here] When I first read M&NP, I took Talbot’s reference to the world “out there” being a hologram, ripples of interference in the ether or quantum foam, as being purely metaphorical. Of course the BCS is majoring on Holochory as a fundamental physics behind information and consciousness.

The other thing I didn’t notice was the reference to Brian Josephson (Cambridge Physics Nobel Laureate – whose work I’ve blogged about many times, corresponded with and briefly met earlier this year [See here] [and here]), amongst many other impressive references from the world of physics.

(Oh yeah, and only yesterday Steve Coppell was eventually named as Alan Pardew’s successor at Reading FC.)