Monday, September 04, 2006

Across from the Blue Nile

Now I'm posting from one of Portland's many coffee shops, using a Personal Telco node. Although it's a holiday, with few cars on the road (for a Monday morning), I'm electing to get work done. Family members are shopping nearby. I'm having a 16 oz. latte + bagel & cream cheese (toasted).

John Brawley on Synergeo has been helping me hammer out an updated way of casting the Synergetics namespace. We've been focusing on the "Nature not waiting to use Pi" thread, using that to pry apart two memes: events unfolding in time, implying "more to come" versus eternal principles, already operating if only dimly understood. We "look forward" to understanding more later ("forward" is a somewhat metaphorical direction), yet Plato assures us that "knowledge is recollection," a kind of remembering + networking (Erhard's "natural knowing"?).

Over on the community college circuit, I'm trying to interest the math profs in Python generators. I think of them as internal combustion engines, with an "infinite loop" piston (while True:...). Each cycle, the generator pauses at yield (a key word) and spits back an interim result. The next method is what fires each cycle (we have several ways of triggering it). My latest example: an engine by Ramanujan that converges to 1/π. Using Python's new Decimal type within a context of 100-digit precision, I was able to match an authoritative Published Pi to like 98 digits.

Ramanujan's Generator for 1/π
Python is a clean OO implementation and inspires clear thinking about a lot of topics, including namespaces. Our Python Nation is so fortunate to have these talented professionals (Peters, Lundh, Barry, Kuchling, Holden... Guido) attending to the emergence of our core creature over the years. The growth process is somewhat organic, in that it takes surprising turns. Who would have anticipated decorator syntax for example, back in the days of Python 1.5.2? And yet there's plenty of continuity as well, a sense of maturing, of following some plan.

OK, there's my signal. Gotta go...

Later, from Lloyd Center Food Court:

Finding a wall plug was next to impossible (long delay) -- lots of cushy chairs, but no AC. No free wireless. True, $4.00 on my Visa for 2 hours is cheap (from AT&T through Barnes & Noble -- very low signal from up here) but I feel nickle and dimed. Definitely a more money grubbing atmosphere. The American flag is huge, a tip-off that "LAWCAP was here" (a faint whiff of decaying meat). It's still a well-kept facility though, neat and clean. The ice rink has a Zamboni.

So many business class Americans still need their government to tie its own hands, lest it set a shining example of customer service, way better than what the private sector provides at a much higher cost (especially when you factor in all the externalities).

That'd be too threatening to the prevailing ideology, a simplistic "capitalism good versus socialism bad" Dick and Jane mumbo jumbo. The Romano-fascist zombie Corporations tolerate a public sector (especially a bully club military), but they don't want any real competition when it comes to brand loyalty -- unless the flag and eagle shields are really theirs alone to control.

Leave the real governance to United Fruit is the Company's message, and let the USA too be our Banana Republic ["hokey pokey" playing from mall speakers].

This wifi is close to unusable -- I'll finish this later. Time to grab $100 of my own money from the ATM. We're buying up a storm here today.