Friday, May 8, 2009

My uncle and me

My uncle, also known as Mr tree, selected a bunch of letters, spaces and punctuation marks in order to form a queue of characters. He didn't like the sequence that was formed so he added a couple of vowels, extracted a colon and scrambled all the symbols several times. After he posted the results people started witting to him asking for advice (they asked about how to get inspired, the best moment for witting, how to know when a poem is finished, how to be sure if a word is good, and many other things). Uncle had no idea what to tell them but he did not want to disappoint them either so he decided to write the following:The shady side of gray

Dr. Peter Turney expanded and reflected about the entry I called "Differences in the aesthetics between math and art". His text is thought provoking and enlightening at the same time. If you liked my previous post I strongly recommend that you to read this: Differences in the aesthetics between math and art

The great poet and periodist Ryann Manning intreviewed me, you can check it here:Interview


Uncle Tree said...

My goodness, Mariana! I may need a crane to raise my jaw up off the floor.

Perfect timing is an art, but it cannot be accomplished without invoking the Spirit of Mathematics. The equation runs backwards when you start the countdown to ecstasy. I believe you have now brought me to that point with your creature feature for today. Thank you, sweet niece!

Appearances are not always what they seem, especially when they come to a halt on my shady side. Bring your picnic basket, and we'll get fuzzy together. Feel free to pick a peach. They're on me.

Yours truly, Uncle Tree

Mariana Soffer said...

Excelent comment, I enjoyed it a lot. And yes, Let's get fuzzy.

Bob Dylan said...

Reality have became intangible, a mere concept. Word's arent words. They have no meaning.

John said...

Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas

Mariana Soffer said...

Nice words J and B. Txs

Anonymous said...

The difference in the aesthetics between maths and art is 754.892, according to recent research.

ojo said...

No way! Your uncle is so lucky!

I can still rememeber - so much years ago - when a teatcher took my written proof, and told me that the "queue of characters" seemed to him just like a succession of fly excrement.

Well, of course I replay him and we we discussed hard. And finally te guy offered his public excuses. But I never return to that class. Fuck him off...

Well. It may appear nonsense...

Congratulations to your uncle!!!

ojo said...

Oh, sorry. I Heven' t seen Uncle Tree before, in the comments!

My congratulatios!!!

Mariana Soffer said...

drodbar: I am amazed we reached the same conclusion, I had the intuition that the result could be obtained by adding 23 to 1887 by 400, but I do not know how to prove it.

Mariana Soffer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mariana Soffer said...

Ojo:Your teacher was awfull as a teacher and as a person. Whatever, he must be pretty unhappy (is so unfair when a person who has more power than you do takes advantage of that), unless she is a total psycho. Anyway I saw your blog and it looks well written.

My uncle is not lucky, he completely diserves this.
Txs a lot for steping by, I am going to put some nonsense coments in your intresting blog.

Uncle Tree said...

Scrambled symbols, toasted punctuations, fried colonoscopies, and a bunch of ripe characters for dessert. What a way to start the day!

Father Tree always told me, that he'd rather be lucky than good. The fact that intelligent beings rest in my shady shade puts this old bark in the category of...uhh, okay then, the word changed to 'fortunate'.

Hey ojo! It appears to me like you pared that fruitcake of a teacher. Hope it didn't cost you much. You certainly tipped him off. Cheerio! UT

patientanonymous said...

Oh, dear. I'm a little frightened to step (trip, fall on my face?) into this one but what the hell!

First, I love Uncle Tree! Oh, I was laughing so hard at everything. I have had a colonoscopy too but thank Zeus it wasn't fried! Ouch.

Also, with the above re: you, Sir Tree, I was thinking about the advice you were asked about and then you wrote that poem in the style as you did. I am a "fill in the blank" writer as well. I was curious if it solicited more questions due to its style considering what you had done before? *laughing*

Nonetheless, on to the (scary) matter at hand. Ah, yes. I am incapable of math due to something called "Dyscalculia" which will no doubt make this more fun for me!

First, fascinating to read from both sides. Quite the intellectual roller coaster. Where I also didn't have a seat belt.

Hmmm...well, this could all be "linguistically based" for me as I am just reading it so take my mumbo jumbo as you will!

Truth and Correct: I'm kind of thinking of specific "Artistic Techniques." Things that are learned to produce exactly that--such as a brushstroke for painting. Rhythm and metre for writing. Also music.

Further to music, I'm not sure how to fit this into any of your points here but I think someone mentioned something like this before. I am going to mention an end result regarding music.

Although it is not "inherently" or perhaps "consciously" thought about by the player, music is based upon mathematics. And completely beyond the simplicity of rhythm and metre. Those are just the starting points when you take lessons as a kid?

Well, so I've been told, anyway. That is for playing instruments. I am purely vox. Still, some pianists have said to me that "Bach is mathematically perfect!"

Maybe that runs along #5? Structure? It's that damn word "metaphor," right? However, Bach doesn't provide me any metaphors?

#7 is funny for me because when I write, I don't go beyond language, I simply try to manipulate it. Oh, there's that "metaphor" business again! However, when I do write, I would like to, in some ways, describe what is "beyond us."

However, maybe my writing is just plain old #6!

I guess I'll stop now but I do agree with a lot of other things here. I just thought I'd toss my hat into the ring.

~otto~ said...

Whoa. My small brain hurts. This is your fault. I need some time. I will get back to you. Awesome.

Mariana Soffer said...

Uncle tree it is amazing I agree with you, but I am glad that you like him, it is
relevant to me somehow.
have you read the book called "godel escher and bach?", I think you are going to like it,
it talks. about some of your doubts/questions

intresting the reflection that bach does not provide you any metaphors, you left me thinking
about the definition of metaphor, and how it could be applied in music. I think music is a
language that expresses emotions and sensations mostly, so if you express the same emotion
and sensation with other music or part of a play it would be a metaphore express with
About the language it is also pretty intresting the thing about expressing what is
beyond us, I do not think we can do that, I do not think we have a concept in us that
can be the base for what is beyond. We can not even imagin it.
Your writting is not plain at all, it is very interesting.
Thank you very much brainy lady

Mariana Soffer said...

otto: you are always welcome, take your time, do not think that much, just write about a part if you feel like.

patientanonymous said...

Brainy Lady *giggle* Thanks.

No, I haven't heard of the book but it sounds good.

Also, interesting comment back (Bach?)

Sorry...wordplay. I can't help it!

I think this is all very good food for thought. Also, when trying to express it in words...perhaps more difficult?

Another thing just came to me as well. Perception (overall--not just with this post.) We all have our own ways of perceiving the entire world!

Whoa! Everything in life can be a brain blower at times!

Mariana Soffer said...

Patient:it is Bach, it is about the mathematician, the musician and the guy that draws. They all did work that is self-referential, like Escher with the hands that paint each other, Godel tries to prove math validity using math and Bach with it's cannon's where you have one instrument referring part of the music that was already played.
It also has at the beginning of each chapter a part where interesting math and logic related things happened with the characters of the Achilles and the turtle (and some other temporary characters such as the crab), for example you have a race between Achilles and the turtle and the paradox (Zeno's invented it) is that Achilles never wins cause it is always half the distance closer than before from the finish line, but it never get's there cause it keeps dividing the distance ad infinity, (like it is remaining 1/2 then 1/4 then 1/8,..) rational numbers are the key of this problem.
You can get it in for free, get an account there and download it the author name is Hofstater, who I deeply admire, it is one of my heroes from my teenager years.
I should write a post about the book, thanks for making me thing of this book. Next the perception subject.

Mariana Soffer said...

Patient: part II perception
This innocently brought subject requires a lot of thought to say something coherent about it. I love this subject is fascinating,it makes me think that everything is an invention, which makes me feel less constrained by reality.

Our world is given not more than by the totality of the words, images and other representations that we must to mean it.

One looks to understand and represent the universe in the simplest way possible. This implies that all existence in our universe, is delimited including what we are. It does not allow the idea of the existence of things that do not have meaning assigned to them.

Anonymous said...

I know. This is just so awesome, isn't it? It's a topic that we could discuss forever and in fact, it pretty much has been discussed forever if you keep looking back.

I like the last part you wrote toward the end.

In terrible Descartes voice:

"I have no meaning, therefore I do not exist..."

...that is until you find me, assign a meaning to me and voila!

And everything being an "invention," therefore you feel less constrained by reality?

I'm not even going to dare to bring Buddhist Philosophy (a view I like to take...when I can...) into all of this!!!

Mariana Soffer said...

Great reflections, you solved the ancient dilema!! Well I think at least you thought something I never heard of which seems an intresting start point for a new theory. (Probably it will be a romantic/dadaist one).
To tell you the truth I did not like what I wrote myself, guess I was not awake enough.
My favourite it is budhist philosophy, is the one I think is closer to the real thing. I started reading suzuki and ended with the Dalai lama, passing throw wallace and borges, do you have any good writter about it to recomend?
you have this in my blog:, from a book called "the te of piglet", that comes aftet "the tao of pooh"
A pleasure reading you

Uncle Tree said...

Hello, patient A and Mariana!

Do dare to philosophize from the Buddha's perspective. I mean, does not perception also depend upon where one currently stands? Where one has been, or what one has experienced in full? You know what Jimi Hendrix said about that, don't you?

I like William Blake's take on cleansing The Doors of Perception. Aldous Huxley wrote a book about it, and a few other pertinent tidbits were included. Flexibility is a must, in many differing areas. The leeway given in law, as an example. That's where this weird shade of grey idea took place.

Got Windex?

Pooh's Tao? That is sooo cute. I'll have to make time to check that out soon. UT

Mariana Soffer said...

Hello uncle, I guess perception depends on where we are standing from and it also does not. I am not sure.
I do not know about blake's perspective, but i'll check it out. What I see is that Huxley's book title comes from there. I love huxeley, I read this book arround 23 years ago, do not remember much.
Are you sure you mean hendrix and not morrison? I always confuse them myself.

Thanks for pointing to all those great thinkers, that talk about perception. I was thinking to do a post on that actually, I have a few lines written down already, It is a hard topic.
I don't percive any windex here, sorry.
I strongly recomend you to check out those two Pooh books, I might put another post about them, or maybe send you a piece of text.
pd:by the way your left branch is looking great

Mariana Soffer said...

Our perception of how mentally sharp we are has more to do with how we're feeling emotionally than how our cognitive functions are actually working.

In other words when someone says, 'I think my memory has become much worse recently', research suggests that this tells us almost nothing about how their memory is working, but reliably indicates that their mood has been low.
It's quite amazing to think that we have such poor insight into the functioning of our own minds that we 'mistake' low mood for a bad memory, poor concentration or impaired problem solving.

It seems that our ability to have insight into our own mental functioning is not very trustworthy.

Harmonie22 said...

Mariana! I've missed reading you, life has kept me away from blogging recently.

That was one interesting interview. It was fun finding out all those things about you. My favorite thing you said was how you would lie to a person who was a liar, it's funny I have the same attitude to liars. So you live in Argentina right now? I have always wanted to go to Argentina and Brazil.

Hope you're well.

Mariana Soffer said...

Harmonie22:Don't worry my friend, we'll catch up.
Glad you liked the interview. This guy Ryann is very nice.
So you did not know I lived here, interesting. You are welcome to the wireless jungle any time. I usually travel a lot, so if you ever come here or to Brazil, I could be your tourist guide.

Harmonie22 said...

I think I knew but wasn't sure, it was in one of your posts I think...and that's an offer I will definitely take you up on :)

Mariana Soffer said...

You are more than welcome here, if you start planing send me an email and I'll help you

Anonymous said...

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