Tuesday, June 28, 2005



An interesting book. I have been jumping around reading sections of the abridged version. The original is seven volumes. Vollmann describes what he is after is a "calculus of violence". He ranges all over history and literature in an attempt to understand how acts of political violence are justified.

Monday, June 27, 2005


General semantics is an educational discipline created by Alfred Korzybski primarily in the years 1919 to 1933. As he often said, general semantics (GS) is distinct from semantics, a different subject. GS is based on the notion that certain personal techniques of evaluation derived from factors underlying the methods of modern science (and scientific knowledge of the world and ourselves), can enhance our ability to evaluate and respond to the world as we experience it.

The three major premises of the system are (1) the map is not the territory [our impressions of things, whether felt in our bodies as sensations, or expressed by the words we use to describe them, are not the things themselves], 2) the map does not show all of the territory, [our reactions (sensations or words) in response to things inevitably miss or leave out a lot of what is actually going on], and (3) the map is self-reflexive [our reactions to anything can prompt further reactions, nonverbal or verbal, which in turn become part of the territory of our experience, complicating everything].

This is quoted from the Wikipedia's entry on General Semantics

Friday, June 24, 2005

Thomas Friedman was on NPR's Science Friday today. He is concerned we will enter a national crisis without a proactive energy policy focusing on alternative fuels. He would like to see a greater focus in American society on science and innovation.

  • Science Friday

  • The World is Flat

  • Wikipedia on Friedman

  • Friedman's Web Site

  • Friedman's Recent New York Times Columns
  • Thursday, June 23, 2005

    My purpose here will be to blog, log, and discuss anything that is relevant to me. Do not expect some great overarching theme here. This is about me exploring the net and bringing back whatever cultural treasures, artifacts, and detritus I find interesting.

    Image hosted by Photobucket.com