Wednesday, February 26, 2020

A Trip Down Memory Lane




Old man Werner reminisces about people he's worked with.

Golden Oldies




The embedded Youtube is Part 4 of a five part series, which I've watched before, and viewed again yesterday, before sharing it to Facebook.

Fuller is adroit in thinking metaphorically, but for most of us, science is a literalist affair, with the true grounded meanings. Metaphors are for embellishment, not for supporting weight.

However, Fuller's Universe is light and airy, highly tensile, remarkably devoid of brute force strength or forcing more generally.  He flits about, always resecuring his own technology, a synergetic language as dense as Heidegger's.  Equilibrium is the name of the game, but in a Universe intent upon success for its humans.

I've been endeavoring to shed some light on what Fuller branded as "the geometry of nature", a claim for which he takes flak. Does XYZ ever make such a claim?  Is the counter-position that geometry is merely a human invention? 

His scaffolding is the IVM ("octet truss"), a pattern found in nature for sure (CCP, FCC), with volumes 1 and 4 respectively.  Rectilinear patterns don't go away, as we've seen in C6XTY (another IVM-related space-frame design). His paradigm cubes have volume 3.

By some reckonings, synergetics offers but a small tweak at first, with this shift to tetravolumes, resulting in some simplifications (more whole number volumes).  Where that leads next is the next question.  Fuller points to intuition, but has intuition served him well?

Does 90 degree precession really pick up where 180 degree gravity ends?  He seems to think the Earth's orbiting and axially rotating are resultant behaviors given the Sun's pull.  Textbooks suggest a primordial kineticism for which "gravity" should not be blamed.  "Critical proximity" is where the changeover occurs.

Stuff "falling in" is not the usual thing with gravity, according to Fuller, as the whole-unpredicted-by-the-parts is more like stuff "wandering" (not "falling in").  The effect of bodies in motion on other bodies in motion seems chaotic and complex.  Is he seriously questioning Newtonian dogmas?

I get the tetravolumes meme and have taken that to heart, and when it comes to "metaphysical gravity" I see "precession" as Bucky means it.  Metaphysical == Metaphorical? 

He dives into speaking very specifically about literal gyroscopes.  When you tug a pole towards you, it yields in a different direction, thanks to its spinning disk.  That's precession for you, I agree.  But the initial spinning did not result from the tugging, right?

In always shying away from "cult leader" status, Fuller is free to exercise and share his private language, fact-laced and interdisciplinary.  His relative success as an inventor, his track record, becomes his evidence that his thinking outside the box (which takes courage) is what more of us might want to try.  "Come on in, the water's fine" is what echoes between the lines.

Monday, February 24, 2020

Fear and Longing



Chris pooh poohs that technology will save us, deus ex machina style. I agree technocracy sounds hollow if the only mantra is "learn to code" in the face of lifestyles vanishing.  A work/study lifestyle might have some coding in it, and you're not taking charity (sitting idle) by studying hard.  We need more serious students, not addicted to fantasy genres.  Like forget about coding.  Read Chris's books.

A safety net that features study (and not amassing huge debts in the process) is about taking care of a population and cultivating diverse skills.  Study includes places to practice, to develop technique.  My friend Glenn has all the makings of a makerspace (a term he despises) yet real estate is so dear in this town, there's no room left for "creatives" (spaces in which to create).

As Bucky Fuller pointed out, if you take away the technology, you have mass starvation and uncontrolled outbreaks of disease within days.  Civilization grinds to a halt.  Technology currently sustains a population of billions.  Take away the politicians ("send them around the moon in a spaceship"), as during the recent government shutdown, and the crisis is relatively less dire.

Chris has been a war correspondent in Mesopotamia and in the Balkans. He shares a bleak view.  He's not in the habit of turning towards American Transcendentalism and seems relatively oblivious to Bucky Fuller's teleological post-nationalism.

Fuller is always quoting Einstein to the effect that human psychology boils down to a fear versus longing axis.  Chris's audience is wondering about hope, longing for a brighter view of the future.  Hedges is focused on ending tyranny by inspiring fear among the would-be tyrants. He has little patience for what he considers "hope mania" minus concerted resistance.

What is the positive future vision after that?  What would winning mean? Where's the science fiction?  A clear view of a more positive, yet attainable, future is ultimately subversive vis-a-vis any status quo dystopia, especially when the pathway forward is nonviolent.

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Thursday, February 06, 2020

Changing a Lightbulb

Changing the headlamp of a car is not supposed to be difficult.  It's a consumer vehicle.  Simple repairs, like changing a light bulb, don't require a mechanic.

That was my experience today, though it wasn't the headlamp, but the front turn signal, underneath. I knew that, but tackled the wrong bulb in any case.

But then it looked like it might've needed changing.

I rationalized the two trips to O'Reilly auto parts (not be be confused with the O'Reilly School I used to work at).

Earlier in the day, Flickr was down and my Youtube was a lot about that, figuring out it wasn't "just me".  Then service was restored and I was back to taking it for granted.  By the end  of the day, I'd decided to give up on that Youtube.  No longer relevant enough to be worth all the post production.

I made it to El Mercado, where I went with Dr. D. for Solar New Years.  Last night, a went to Laurelhurst and saw Knives Out with Dr. T., but I've not reviewed it yet.

Yesterday I tested out the collision detection exhibit I yakked about in the Youtube from a day earlier.  I'll likely use it again tomorrow as the curriculum is pretty much the same across the two zones (regional and anywhere).

Monday, February 03, 2020

Happy Chinese New Year




At the end of this one, I wish people Happy New Year on the "AD/BC calendar", an idiosyncratic name for the proleptic Gregorian.

Then I look ahead to "Chinese New Year" (now sometimes referred to as the Lunar New Year), which has since passed.

I'm linking here to a Chinese New Year video (scroll to end, after fanciful history).