All posts for the month February, 2007

Heard “Al” at the Oscars last night, and have to agree he’s a natural. Particularly taken with his closing remarks

“People all over the world – we need to solve the climate crisis. It’s not a political issue, it’s a moral issue,” he said.

“We have everything we need to get started with the possible exception of the will to act. That’s a renewable resource – let’s renew it.”

Demonstrated today in Silicon Valley by Canadian company D:Wave Systems. Thanks to Magnus Berg over on MoQ.Discuss for the link.

I’ve been following Quantum Computing, not so much for the interest in processing power and super-computing applications, exciting though they may be, but because of the increasing importance of Quantum Information as a fundamental level of physics.

QI or Qubits are somthing I’ve seen as entirely analogous to Pirsigian MOQ “quality” (see also MOQ related links in the sidebar), neither zero nor one, neither subject nor object, but quantum information as some interaction of value or possibility more fundamental than matter itself. The people at the BCS Cybernetics special interest group (fixed link in my side-bar) have seemed to be the people most closely pursuing this philosophical limit to physics itself, drawing on Schroedinger, Dirac et al. But there are several other points of convergence with the Psybertron agenda (in the page header).

The Josephson junction technology involved in D:Wave’s hardware.

The original Stapp and Josephson link I made between quantum processing and oriental world-views.

The Josephson Mind-Matter Unification Project.

Josephson (and Stapp) contribution to the Tucson “Science of Consciousness” and “Quantum Mind” initiatives. I speculated previously that the origins of this Tucson initiative were very much parallel to the Einstein Meets Magritte initiative in Europe, at which Pirsig presented his “Subjects, Objects, Data and Values” paper, had common people like Heilighen and Joslyn in their inception at VUB Brussells.

T E Lawrence in Seven Pillars of Wisdom (p417, Cape 1940 edition)

The Arab respected force a little: he respected craft more, and often had it in enviable degree: but most of all he respected blunt sincerity of utterance, nearly the sole weapon God had excluded from his armament.

The Turk was all things by turn, and so commended himself for such a while as he was not corporately feared. Much lay in the distinction of the corporate and the personal. There were Englishmen whom, individually, the Arabs preferred to any Turk, or foreigner; but on the strength of this, to have generalised and called the Arabs pro-English, would have been a folly. Each stranger made his own poor bed among them.

And later p 527.

[G]ipsy families from the north with the materials of their tinkering trade [came] on donkeys. The [Arab troops] greeted them with a humour I little understood – till I saw that, beside their legitimate profits of handicraft, the women were open to other advances. Praticularly they were easy to [my bodyguards]; and for a while they prospered exceedingly, since our men were eager and very generous.

I also made use of them.

It seemed a pity to be at a loose end so near to Amman, and not to bother to [spy on] it. So Farraj and I hired three of the merry little women, wrapped ourselves up like them, and strolled through the village [sic].

Some Turkish soldiers crossed our party, and taking all five of us for what we looked, grew much too friendly. We showed a coyness, and a good turn of speed for gipsy women, and escaped intact.

For the future I decided to resume my habit of wearing British soldier’s rig in enemy camp. It was too brazen to be suspect.

The irony, and not a mention, of his previous spying visit to Deraa in disguise, which resulted in his own brutal rape. (Anyway, plenty of wit and wisdom. Now in the final 20%)

T E Lawrence in Seven Pillars of Wisdom (p477, Cape 1940 edition)

The conception of antithetical minds and matter, which was basic in the Arab self-surrender, helped me not at all. I achieved surrender (so far as I did achieve it) by the very opposite road, through my notion that the mental and physical were inseperably one; that our bodies, the universe, our thoughts and tactilities were conceived in and of the molecular sludge of matter, the universal element through which form drifted in clots and patterns of varying density. It seemed to me unthinkable that assemblages of atoms should cogitate except in atomic terms. My perverse sense of values constrained me to assume that abstract, and concrete, as badges, did not denote oppositions more serious than Liberal and Conservative.

Sorry, couldn’t resist capturing these links after browsing a link from Rivets.

This German site with zillions of air-show pics and links
Includes those C17 flare smoke / trailing vortex images.

This bible (?) page with countless images of vapour clouds
Linked here before, but this page has dozens (hundreds ?) of further links. Just love the hard-edged solid look of the cloud on this F14 – features in a number of AVI’s too.

Inlcuding this one where I came in
The irony is the “arty” sunset images of the military machines in active zones, but that F14 in the green sunset is worth a peek anyway (scroll down).

Did I mention I was a plane spotter,
and an aero engineer originally ?