Thursday, July 28, 2016

High Voltage

High Tension Lines

I got a lot of work done on MathFuture, but given we were starting to argue about the Infinite Monkey Theorem, and given that's not a list designed for arguments, I felt it was time to get off.
NOTE:  I acknowledge the case where we claim the proof is empirical, because Shakespeare fits our definition of "monkey" for all intents and purposes (so what about a few chromosomal differences, don't be so picky).  So duh, a monkey already *has* come up with Hamlet, a tale told by an idiot, that monkeys also read. [post]
We were hitting too many hot button items, such as whether the Theory of Real Numbers is really sound.

Andrius, in Lithuania, clued me regarding the video below, which I'm still plowing through, as I get ready to teach a next class.

Bradford gave me some good advice, reminding me I wasn't talking to rank beginners.

The target audience for my Philosophy for Physics Majors is more like West Point faculty members (thinking of Dr. Bob Fuller).  I shared it with the Physics listserv I'm subscribed to.

Anyway, the voltage was getting too high for such a village-level grid, where typical household voltages are more the norm, if I may be permitted such a metaphor.

Regarding Norman Wildberger's video, I've gotten up to 31 minutes, 16 seconds, where he covers the Infinite Monkey Theorem, par for the course (i.e. it often crops up in such contexts).

He tries to shove that nonsense off onto Philosophy maybe, after getting our agreement it's not Mathematics, however I'd say Philosophy grew up a lot in the 20th century and what he's saying is not really Philosophy either.

Yes, it might be cocktail conversation after a few drinks.  I'd leave it at that.

I think the whole talk up to that time point demonstrates what Wittgenstein observed:  that mathematicians are singularly poor at avoiding pitfalls in philosophy. I'll have to go dig that up and provide a proper citation.

Norman is trying to dig himself out of such holes, more power to him.