Apr. 6th, 2011

dagoski: Emperor Norton I of the Bear State Republic (Default)

 

Today's theme is discontinuous change. In Mathematics, we define a discontinuity as a situation in which the normal flow of the function, f(x) on the range x->xo. It's the place where, while a limit may exist. it's value changes depending on which side you come at it from. If you graph this condition, you see that the value of function jumps from th smooth line to a new value. You can get sharp angles, points or jumps. You can even get gaps where the function simply does not exist. Back in my Physics days, I was fascinated by this stuff. It led me to study fairly alarming Chemistry in the form of far from equilibrium reactions. I then wasted way more time than I should have studying the Theory of Complex Systems. I love this stuff. I like studying the places where our laws, mathematical, Physical and/or Social, break down and cease to predict our immediate future. Ido not, however, enjoy experiencing this sort of thing directly. And, yet, my life lands me in these situations. Looks like that old Medicine Woman was right when she said I was 'Coyote'. No joke here. This was actually one of the first things that happened at college. I guess the moral of that story is never hit on Apache Medicine Woman's daughter if you a white a guy like me. Right now I'm experiencing several discontinuous changes. Some are good like the 2300 DIY move we just did to Los Angeles. The other good is shifting from Mac OSX to Linux. My new laptop is a powerful ox sort of machine. Actually, it's more like a Diesel Electric locomotive packed into a mid sized sedan body. The bad is my cycling epic today. I've been escorting Michelle to and from campus just to get some exercise in and to help here deal with traffic in Westwood. This is less stressful than you'd imagine. We're used to Philly volume and Philly's anti-social personality in all things motorized. Compared to that. the Wilshire/Westwood corridor is nothing. So, I'd figured that since I'd been doing twenty miles all told everyday this week. I figured riding to my parents house would be no biggie. Wrong. My total Today's theme is discontinuous change. In Mathematics, we define a discontinuity as a situation in which the normal flow of the function, f(x) on the range x->xo. It's the place where, while a limit may exist. it's value changes depending on which side you come at it from. If you graph this condition, you see that the value of function jumps from th smooth line to a new value. You can get sharp angles, points or jumps. You can even get gaps where the function simply does not exist. Back in my Physics days, I was fascinated by this stuff. It led me to study fairly alarming Chemistry in the form of far from equilibrium reactions. I then wasted way more time than Ishould have studying the Theory of Complex Systems. I love this stuff. I like studying the places where our laws, mathematical, Physical and/or Social, break down and cease to predict our immediate future. Ido not, however, enjoy experiencing this sort of thing directly. And, yet, my life lands me in these situations. Looks like that old Medicine Woman was right when she said I was 'Coyote'. No joke here. This was actually one of the first things that happened at college. I guess the moral of that story is never hit on Apache Medicine Woman's daughter if you a white a guy like me. Right now I'm experiencing several discontinuous changes. Some are good like the 2300 DIY move we just did to Los Angeles. The other good is shifting from Mac OSX to Linux. My new laptop is a powerful ox sort of machine. Actually, it's more like a Diesel Electric locomotive packed into a mid sized sedan body. The bad is my cycling epic today. I've been escorting Michelle to and from campus just to get some exercise in and to help here deal with traffic in Westwood. This is less stressful than you'd imagine. We're used to Philly volume and Philly's anti-social personality in all things motorized. Compared to that. the Wilshire/Westwood corridor is nothing. So, I'd figured that since I'd been doing twenty miles all told everyday this week. I figured riding to my parents house would be no biggie. Wrong. My total mileage was something like fifty miles. Home to UCLA, UCLA to home to Venice Beach to Lawndale and all the back. Man, this was only my third bike ride since the Ohio winter came crashing down. You have to build up to these things. I can't really feel my legs right now.

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dagoski: Emperor Norton I of the Bear State Republic (Default)
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July 2011

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