1. re: last /tagged/magic post


    so haha yeah “powerful magicians almost live in their mindspaces” (except: we all live in our mindspaces), but the difference is like what sort of morphism relates inner/outer universes

    but that’s all kind of undermined by the pervasive depiction of the mage who, crippled for want of a concept, devotes themselves to the task of finding the book which contains it, and even by the notion that a mage /has/ (or has read) so many books

    because they’re all inherently deferential to the notion that creativity & novelty require or stem directly from outside influence (which my anecdotal/quotidian experience corroborates)

    and how could you possibly deny the existence of (sets of) ideas too complex to fit in your head

    so sure, depend on serialization and cyborgize yourself out to the pdfs you hoard

    but even cheating I don’t know anything about anything

    and then maybe refuting this entire argument, discrete glossolalia sits there scrolling by, (afaict) untied to any external universe but nonetheless introducing compositional novelty (I can’t think of any instances of construction of primitives?) except I can’t remember enough or summon it on demand to really know what it does and doesn’t do

    a clever reductionist (if they were right) would be a microcosmic god in their own head


  3. (Source: eddiecatflap, via alexyar)

  4. martian-rasters:

    joint, disjoint

    2 x 768 x 768


  5. We describe three different methods of visualizing the “closed universe” S³, and point out language in Dante’s Divine Comedy which suggests that he visualized his universe in the same ways, making his universe topologically S³.

    in case anyone is interested, this is my favorite piece of expository mathematical writing


  6. "In quantum mechanics, a particle in a box has discrete energy levels, while a particle in infinite space has a continuum of energy levels. The discreteness comes from the “compactness” of the box. Can we use this idea to explain why spin is quantized? Yes! The “box” in this case, however, is the group SU(2)!"

  7. physicists generally conclude their incantations with “…where I have attempted to make an even number of sign errors”


  8. the point of view that the p-adic completions of are quite straightforward while the real completion is weird(ly pathological), as expressed by Haran in his book The Mysteries of the Real Prime, does a lot to vindicate my distaste for real analysis


  9. i personally find it fascinating that (at anthropic scales/energies) time and space are both associative

    in the sense that the binary operations

    t(A,B) := “do A, then do B”

    s(A,B) := “place A, and place B next to it”

    are both associative:

    you can perform any (finite) number of processes in sequence without needing parentheses, and likewise you can lay any (finite) number of objects end-to-end without needing parentheses

  10. new pens

    (the law of fives is never wrong)


  11. self-diagnosis: i’m too hardboiled for fiction


  12. buckminsterfullerene' has a letter for each face of the icosahedron