Saturday, March 09, 2013

Links of Note

* Nathaniel Peters discusses Grotius on religion

* Gilbert Meilaender on Dorothy Sayers's The Man Born to Be King

* Mike Flynn looks at our historical sources for the life of Hypatia of Alexandria

* Gregory Sadler on Cicero's De Natura Deorum

* Online resources for teaching children computer programming

* Barry Mazur on reasoning in mathematics and the sciences

* Lera Borodisky on how language affects our thought by affecting what is salient to us in the world around us

* Joel Brouwer on reading John Donne

* David Graeber on the history of virtual money. The idea that commodity money differs from credit money in that the former can be stolen is surely off, however; it depends, for one thing, on how credit money is recorded, and Graeber seems to me to assume too easily the direction of fit. One could argue that relative independence in preservation is the key factor in commodity money: you can hide your gold when the tax men or looters (historically the two are not in every society sharply distinguished) come, and having it doesn't depend on the cooperation of others. Thus it's unsurprising that commodity money becomes dominant in violent periods: good luck trying to stay afloat with credit money in a period of violent upheaval. The failure to address this is a weakness in the essay; which is nonetheless quite interesting.

* Mark Rowlands on play as a human activity

* The bizarre story of how dating online led to physicist Paul Frampton sitting in a South American jail for cocaine smuggling.

* An interesting article at the SEP on combining logic and probability. What strikes me is that the proposals are all quite similar to the way logical quantity is handled in traditional syllogistic (or the way regularity works in term functor logic, which is equivalent). Probability = 1 works exactly like universal quantity. The main difference is that assigning probabilities gives more information than merely assigning particular quantity.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please understand that this weblog runs on a third-party comment system, not on Blogger's comment system. If you have come by way of a mobile device and can see this message, you may have landed on the Blogger comment page, or the third party commenting system has not yet completely loaded; your comments will only be shown on this page and not on the page most people will see, and it is much more likely that your comment will be missed.