Monday, August 22, 2011

Some Links of Note

* Excerpts from Thomas Aquinas's childhood journal

* R. C. Sproul on Moby Dick.

* Matthias Shapiro looks at Texas job numbers. The short of it is that, contrary to some naysayers, they look quite good; yes, a massive amount of it is energy, but much of it is not; Texas unemployment seems to a great extent due to immigration exceeding job creation rather than flagging job creation; and public sector is a contributor but not a major one. There are some other things a full analysis would have to consider; for instance, one of Texas's major advantages throughout this period has been the fact that its mortgage regulations were unusually strict to begin with, and this combined with relatively low taxes and a management-friendly economic policy have made Texas a magnet for certain kinds of businesses. Karl Smith notes some of the complications in interpreting such data. But these get into more complicated issues. However one interprets the data here, one thing that is certain is that Texans need more Presidential candidates saying controversial things about the superior position of the Texan economy; not because Texas governors can really and truly take credit for such things, but because there has never been so much available to the general public, and so easily, for getting a good sense of the economic situation of Texas.

* Oohlah argues for taking 'experimental philosophy' seriously as an area of specialization.

* John Wilkins argues for abolishing the cohort system of education.

* Sperber & Mercier, Reasoning as a Social Competence (PDF)

* Elizabeth Anderson, The Epistemology of Democracy

* I'm looking for good book-length texts on dialogical logic and belief dynamic logics. Does anyone have any to recommend?

ADDED LATER

* Jack Layton, leader of Canada's New Democratic Party, died today at age 61.

* Catarina Dutilh-Novaes discusses the importance of abbaco schools in the development of algebraic notation.

* John Baez, & John Huerta, The Strangest Numbers in String Theories (PDF). This is a paper on octonions. More discussion by Baez here.

* Rishidev Chaudhuri on mathematical learning.

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