The 16 Lunar Gates: Logic in Motion Part 2

1stAnd3rd

              Last and First Quarter Moons

Part 1 of this series began at the first quarter phase of the Moon on 01-16-2016. Today we’re at the last quarter which is as illustrated above, the visual and geometric opposite of the first quarter. These two positions of the Moon are also the second primary set of binary/polar relationships after the new and full Moon positions. Today, in part because few people farm we’re not as directly connected to the practical value of these polar relations. The full moon is hard to ignore but we’re generally not familiar with waxing, waning or gibbous(when’s the last time you heard someone say that word). Ironically, while science pays less attention, there are many people who are aware of at least the crescent moon phases for religious reasons.  Still, our awareness doesn’t change the fact these relationships encode the same valuable knowledge as boolean math and logic gates which power computers. In Part 3, we’ll take an in-depth look at how digital logic drives the relationships which govern how the Moon’s orbit presents the Sun’s light to us.

 

 

 

 

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Doing The Math: Reparations and Responsibility

Over 12 years starting in 1953, Israel added 45,000 jobs as it’s electrical system and GNP tripled in capacity fueled in part by investments made with reparations money from Germany.  The relevance of STEM to jobs and economics of slavery past and present is a recurring beat here at STEM Drum.  It is difficult in the extreme to envision solutions to community development challenges that don’t leverage STEM. We and America have a responsibility to face those challenges.  Although initial opposition was fierce, Germany is still paying($89B as of 2012) because there’s a sense of responsibility:

Asked whether, given the millions of dollars that Germany is now pledging to help weaker economies in the euro zone, there were thoughts that 60 years of payments to survivors was enough, Werner Gatzer, who leads the negotiations for the Germans, shook his head.

“We will have done enough when no more survivors remain,” Mr. Gatzer said. “As long as they live, we will uphold our responsibility.”

NY Times

We have known for some time that America profited greatly from slave labor but a close look at the numbers is needed to create practical plans of action:

the Civil War—the most lethal conflict in American history—boiled down to the right to raise an empire based on slaveholding and white supremacy. What had not yet clicked for me was precisely how essential enslavement was to America, that its foundational nature explained the Civil War’s body count.  The sheer value of enslaved African-Americans is just astounding. And looking at this recent piece by Chris Hayes, I’m wondering if my numbers are short (emphasis added):

In order to get a true sense of how much wealth the South held in bondage, it makes far more sense to look at slavery in terms of the percentage of total economic value it represented at the time. And by that metric, it was colossal. In 1860, slaves represented about 16 percent of the total household assets—that is, all the wealth—in the entire country, which in today’s terms is a stunning $10 trillion.

Ten trillion dollars is already a number much too large to comprehend, but remember that wealth was intensely geographically focused. According to calculations made by economic historian Gavin Wright, slaves represented nearly half the total wealth of the South on the eve of secession. “In 1860, slaves as property were worth more than all the banks, factories and railroads in the country put together,” civil war historian Eric Foner tells me. “Think what would happen if you liquidated the banks, factories and railroads with no compensation.”

 The Case for Reparations: An Intellectual Autopsy – Ta-Nehisi Coates – The Atlantic.

There is a compelling interview with Ta-Nehisi on MSNBC.

While it will be better when Justice is manifest, African-Americans are free to choose to invest our limited resources(starting with our attention) in STEM. That is our responsibility to our village independent of what others do.

Expanding The Cosmos

I’m finally getting to comment on the first episode of Cosmos hosted by physicist Neil deGrasse Tyson which I found to be very good overall. I was struck however, by the claim that Giordano Bruno merely made a “lucky guess”. This is part of the same kind of poorly informed view that ignores earlier phases of science. Others @Slate @coreyspowell have pointed out, The Cosmos didn’t do a great job presenting the complexities of Bruno but these writers are also operating from an incomplete view.  As stated earlier in African Information Engineering Part 2 a close examination challenges

“the unscientific notion that early human thinkers were rooted in and blinded by religious views.”

Frances Yate’s Art of Memory makes a compelling case for how Bruno represents a path from Egypt to the growth of the scientific method. Newton and Leibniz were both influenced by Bruno and both intermixed religion and science(google Newton alchemy).

More important than correcting the historical record, is examining how Bruno(and those before him) were able to conceive of things they had no experimental data for. “Lucky guess” isn’t a solid scientific explanation.  Bruno was using sophisticated spatial/geometrical techniques to develop and test ideas.  In his posthumously published The Computer and the Brain, John von Neumann says

“…when we talk mathematics, we may be discussing a secondary language, built on the primary language truly used by the central nervous system.”

Perhaps The Shadows of Ideas are baked into the fabric of the Cosmos in a way that makes it possible for human consciousness to perceive the math science depends on. Maybe that’s why Adinkra symbols map very easily to supersymmetry. We don’t know but good science requires us to explore the facts we have at hand. We will all benefit from a more complete view of humanity’s journey and it may likely IMO prove to be necessary in order to comprehend the wonders of the Cosmos STEM is helping to reveal.

African Information Engineering Part 3

This is the last of a three part series(links to: Part 1 and Part 2)  taken from a forthcoming publication. Dr. Peter Chen is a world reknown computer scientist. His 1976 paper on data modeling is one of the most cited papers in the the field. Chen pioneered an abstract way to describe a database known as Entity-Relationship Modeling(ERM). In 2014’s highly automated and digitized world, with so many people  living in developed urban area you’re likely using some service or device whose designers directly or indirectly used ERM or one of its descendants. If you plug into the grid in any way, “likely” becomes certainly.  A 2002 paper reflecting on the long-lived success of ERM, says:

Many people asked the author how he got the idea of the Entity-Relationship model. After he kept on  getting that kind of questions, the author thought it might be related to something that many people in Western culture may not have. After some soul searching, the author thought it could be related to his Chinese culture heritage. There are some concepts in Chinese character development and evolution that are closely related to modeling of the things in the real world.

From Wikipedia:

Peter Chen, the father of ER modelling said in his seminal paper:

The entity-relationship model adopts the more natural view that the real world consists of entities and relationships. It incorporates some of the important semantic information about the real world.

He is here in accord with philosophic and theoretical traditions from the time of the Ancient Greek philosophers: Socrates, Plato and Aristotle (428 BC) through to modern epistemology, semiotics and logic of Peirce, Frege and Russell. Plato himself associates knowledge with the apprehension of unchanging Forms (The forms, according to Socrates, are roughly speaking archetypes or abstract representations of the many types of things, and properties) and their relationships to one another.

As we saw in Part 2, Shabaka, several hundred years before Socrates, Plato and Aristotle, had preserved this knowledge that had been codified in Memphis much earlier, perhaps several millennia.

ERM deals with the structure of databases but the Memphite technology is also applicable to the dynamics of a database. There are two sets of symmetrical operations that can be performed on most databases

  1. Create-Delete
  2. Retrieve-Update

These operations, identified in 1983 are known as CRUD and remain in widespread use. The web’s HTTP protocol is based on a similar set of four operations.

  1. Post-Delete
  2. Get-Put

Every day you use the web, you’re using techniques of African Information Engineering!

Following in Leibniz’s footsteps, physicist Stephen Wolfram is seeking to make knowledge computable. One tool he’s using is the cellular automata like the one below

300px-R090_pulse_wide

Perhaps connections between African Information Engineering and cellular automata can help African cultures get back in the game.

Social Physics

Sometimes when an app seems simple, math proven in a seemingly unrelated field may be involved. In this case it’s a variant of the Laplacian operator being used to analyze social networks. You don’t need to know this math to use social networks, but if you want to get the most out of them or better yet realize your own vision of one you need to at least know people who speak the math. Often that’s a physicist or engineer and getting to know them socially can be a good way to tap into what they know. OTOH, if you are deeply literate in math and want to help the villiage, or start a company or find a different work environment sharing this kind of information can help.

Take Me To Your Leader: Math, Sci-fi and STEAM

Beyond participation, folks currently underrepresented in the STEM fields should thing big, be leaders! From Sun Ra to P-Funk to OutKast and Janelle Monae black scifi has always been innovative, has always had an impact on the community. Now, with the power of the internet, we have an opportunity to connect innovative artists with innovative STEM pros. This combination can go a long way towards rescuing black and brown folk, the planet and maybe the entire universe! Imagine a world where where creative STEAM geniuses collaborate on “instruments” that not only play music, but heal, transform pollutants and manage marketplaces.

This power to imagine is the first step in changing the world! 

“Black To The Future” Walter Mosley

In the late Amiri Baraka’s “Answers In Progress”, a group of aliens land in NewArk, NJ looking not for the political, business or space industry leaders, but for the great jazz drummer Art Blakely.

Typically we see the relationship between math and music from the perspective of applying mathematical ideas to music but Listening To Mathematics explores the notion of music informing math. That’s a powerful idea our lives may depend on. As JazzHopRevolution says in The Myth: It’s all math and history every gun battle.

Quadruple Play: Physics, Biology, Math and Music

Physicist and 2013 Edward Bouchet Award winner Stephon Alexander can be seen below with Jim Gates, who as we’ve previously noted was the first(1994) recipient of that award.

StephonJim-590

In the background of the photo above you can see that the two physicists are at the E.E. Just Symposium. Stephon Alexander is the Ernest Everett Just 1907 Professor of Natural Sciences at Dartmouth. Just was a visionary biologist who saw

that organisms are holistic systems with emergent properties that arise from their organization and complexity …

Only today, with powerful tools such as low-light, high-contrast optical-sectioning microscopy (Yuste and Konnerth, 2005), are we beginning to noninvasively image molecular activities and other events inside cells as they occur during development.

E. E. Just understood, long before such technologies were available, that treating the cell as a holistic system necessitates using methods that do not destroy its integrity. Today, as ecology and biological development, separated for a hundred years, are reunited under the auspices of Eco-Devo, we can celebrate the work and insight of Ernest Everett Just.

Science Direct

Stephon Alexander is also exploring relationships between disciplines:

“There is a conceptual connection between physics and music,” Alexander observes. “In composition or improvisation I see geometric parallels to physical laws like gravity, with the musician gravitating to or away from certain tonal tensions. I see geometry as a principle that governs physical law and also harmonic and rhythmic ideas in music, especially in jazz.

Dartmouth Now(emphasis mine)

In this Ted Talk he even demonstrates how John Coltrane’s Giant Steps can be related geometrically to quantum gravity and dna! As he notes in his presentation it might be  “a bit much”, however recalling the notion that Drummers Are Natural Intellectuals, perhaps it’s quite Natural.