Points and Lines are Fictional things, yet we depend on them for everything it seems. Thoughts?

Points and Lines are Fictional things, yet we depend on them for everything it seems. Thoughts?

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  • Massimo Melli likes this.
  • William Kuch They may be fiction, they may be real (exist tangibly). There’s no way to know. If you proceed as if they exist in nature you’ll probably do just fine. And if you convince yourself that they are just models which for whatever reason coincidentally work properly for whatever unknown reason … you will also be fine, just fine. There’s no way to know. This not knowing is complicated by the fact that ‘certainly fictional’ and ‘probably fictional’ suffer the same issue, and as well ‘certainly tangible’ and ‘probably tangible’ also suffers the exact same problem. Amazingly these ambiguities are not really a problem but a solution, they only look like a problem.
  • Kenneth Udut William Kuchwholeheartedly agreed. Ambiguity is the answer. Having alternatives to “I don’t know” (combined with our seemingly built-in desire for making patterns – ie – “drawing lines”) feels comforting, as does agreement.. engages whatever brain/body chemicals there are that reduce that awkward ambigious feeling because, well, someone *else’s* mental machinery of thoughts is running similarly to one’s own
    12 hrs · Like · 1
  • Kenneth Udut William Kuch I like analogizing to machines and being the hamster in the wheel that’s turning it frantically while also taking orders from the fast inner machinery and the outer machinery (people, environment, body, etc) as well. Poor hamster.
    12 hrs · Like · 1
  • William Kuch The only reason Relativity works properly is because of ambiguity. Equivalence is just very slightly ambiguous, and so its perfectly adapted to nature. Ambiguity is a powerful thing.
  • Kenneth Udut William Kuch Indeed. I love the ambiguity of numbers. Precision depends on human needs. When human needs grow, the precision grows and yet the goal seems to move further away.

    I don’t mind attempts at precision in engineering because we like to bui
    ld things for our use. We know how manipulate things like electrons and such rather grossly but effectively more or less, hence this lovely technological world that I’m glad to live in.

    I love the patterns of nature; our visual system seems to be designed to outline objects in one area, giving us perspective and knowing where one thing seems to stop and another thing begins… and another system that seems to fill in the colors and textures and such.

    But humans tend to be arrogant. We know a little something and think we know a lot more than we do. Excessive certainty can lead to so many troubles. It helps when applied properly but a heuristic (rule of thumb) becomes a stereotype (the nearly religious fascination with Occam’s Razor among some people who claim to be anti-religious is maddening to me) – and when its applied to people… you end up with situations involving racial profiling and such… and lots of messes too numerous to count.

    Recognizing the ongoing fuzziness of the lines, depending on their veracity only as much as is necessary and not a drop more, would seem to be at least part of an answer I think. I dunno.
    12 hrs · Like · 2
  • Woodland Song I get so dizzy, spinning thru space in circles. !
  • Massimo Melli I agree, there is some fuzziness in the geometry of Euclid. The point has zero dimensions and the line has only one dimension, legth, but it could be infinite. The point of zero dimension can include all reality in itself, see this picture: ( the question is : do we exist? )

    Massimo Melli's photo.
  • Kenneth Udut Massimo Melli Standing in the doorway, with one foot in one room and one in the other room, staring at the wall inbetween and occasionally getting glimpses of both rooms simultaneously as well as the wall. But most of the time, we are looking in either one room or the other, and forget the wall is even there.
    11 hrs · Like · 1
  • Massimo Melli Pythagoras, Archimedes, Plato, Parmenides, and other distinguished sophists lived here in the Mediterranean around Sicily. I can see that you are confused enough to become a member of the Academy. You are right, and what is worse, you don’t see what is behind you either…Why do we think we know everything ?
  • Kenneth Udut Massimo MelliNor do we see what’s below our feet or above our heads… or behind the very eyes with which we see. Well, we’re learning a little about that.

    Hm. I think it is a fun hobby of mankind, giving things names and saying what they are for. When we run out of things, we create new things and give them names as well and say what they are for.
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  • Massimo Melli Read the rules of the Academy on Google. massimo melli blog. Do you qualify ?
  • William Kuch “the nearly religious fascination with Occam’s Razor among some people who claim to be anti-religious” … I cant tell you how much I agree with this. Even in math it is sometimes given more importance than it actually deserves. Occam’s Razor may be See More
    4 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Gary Wayne I respectfully refer all to Penrose Book: The road to reality. In the first chapter he makes a good argument for 3 kinds of existence. Mathematical physical and mental. To say that points and lines are fictional I believe to be wrong. All 3 existences are needed.. Kenneth Udut, Massimo Melli, William Kuch
    4 hrs · Unlike · 2
  • William Kuch Good point Gary Wayne and thanks for mentioning it. I was not aware of the book but I do share the belief so I’ll have to look for that book and see what he says. I think that our usage of the term fictional has basically the same meaning as saying “does not exist tangibly”. Basically just a refutation of “hard Platonism” if you know what I mean.
    3 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Gary Wayne William Kuch, Penrose is a hard Platonist,and shares his reasons. I will warn you in advance his book is very mathematical and requires some serious study to get what he is saying. But it is worth the effort.
  • William Kuch My personal belief on what you could call “hard Platonism” is that it does not have the kind of ambiguity that you find in Relativity. However it could be modified so that it does. If you say that there is an equivalence between [1] “tangible lines exist” and [2] “tangible lines _might_ exist” …then you have a tool which is much more powerful because there is no quantitative alteration but there is a qualitative adaptation which makes it more accurate. I’m very interested in this book, do you know the title ?
    3 hrs · Unlike · 1
  • Gary Wayne Massimo Melli Love the blog. I agree with zero point Logon, but I think it is a result of the limit concept in mathematics. Not by division of zero. Hyperbolic geometry my friend
  • William Kuch Gary Wayne Roger Penrose ” road to reality” … I’ll look for that. Thanks.
  • Kenneth Udut Gary Wayne I like Penrose’s thinking in general – I actually like all theories of everything and Penrose is far smarter than I – I couldn’t begin to touch his precision. I’ve read outlines of the book, and summaries of the concepts within, but not the book itself. I don’t have a problem with it; ultimately I believe all viewpoints are true, due to the nature of context and the variety of methods used for reasoning.

    Most importantly, two *different* contexts will look at the same thing and see different facets of it and some won’t see it at all and some will see it as everything.

    Hence, all views are also false, which is a more common way to look at it. Yet some may be more true than others, etc etc. hence my love of a preciseness of ambiguity, or ambiguity of preciseness, however one might look at it and ambiguity in itself, really.

    William Kuch Yes, I was speaking in hard Platonist terms, as if I am a boy taking apart the line he just drew, trying to understand its lineness, looking at the paper sideways and seeing the raised hump and concluding, “Thus, Lines are Fiction! My teacher lies!”

    I’ve been working on decategorization of a sort. I’m sure there’s some name for it. Not so much deconstructionalist really, although I’m having fun dismantling.
    1 hr · Edited · Like · 1
  • Kenneth Udut At the same time, I believe there are ultimate truths. At heart, I’m an objectivist, using relativism as a scrub brush as it were
  • Kenneth Udut [as, for me to say “all things are relative” is stating for “all humanity for all time” not to trust the floor under their feet – The End is really trying to take an objective stance and calling all things subjective… with the exception of “all things are relative/due to perspective” etc of course.

    Hence, it’s why I find the nature of ambiguity so intriguing, and finding it in all sorts of unexpected places.
  • William Kuch I found a copy of “Road to Reality” in PDF format and Im looking through it right now. Penrose is really brilliant. Im searching his book for his views on equivalence, and Im not finding what Im looking for. What I want him to say is that if you have a kilo of copper and a kilo of iron that they are not ‘equal’, but that they are ‘equivalent with respect to mass’. And by analogy if you have an ‘expected value of X in your left pants pocket and in your other pocket you have a deterministic “given” X of the exact same magnitude, that these are not really equal, but instead they are likewise equivalent’. Im looking for something like that, probably wont find it, because he probably never said it, but probably should have.
    1 hr · Unlike · 1
  • Kenneth Udut William Kuch I find the nature of equivilence vs equality fascinating as well. You may like this one page thingie I made up a few months ago:
    http://sifferent.com/

  • Kenneth Udut I didn’t use the mathematical terms because.. well, I’m not all that precise in that way… and I’m not well versed in mathematics – but I’m good with concepts … sort of.
  • Kenneth Udut and.. yes, I was being overly dramatic. I enjoy hyperbole and have fun with it because, in the end, I know I’m full of it yet I think I have a little something maybe worth sharing a little
  • Kenneth Udut In short… i think _sometimes_ mathematics can lose precision by by its own attempts at precision. How do you capture the concept that two apples are both two apples and also different to which using them for numerical quantity would be ultimately dishonest? They’re sifferent
    53 mins · Like · 1
  • Kenneth Udut but in the end, I’m just yet another guy who thinks he’s figured out something knew that ppl have already known for thousands of years… writing scribbles on paper/computer and making it sound magnificent and novel and searching for someone to go, “WoSee More
  • William Kuch ” mathematics can lose precision by by its own attempts at precision. ” <<< this is exactly correct. And, the use of equivalence in Relativity was very radical but that’s exactly why it works so well. Because it introduces ambiguity in just the right way.
  • Kenneth Udut William Kuch Yay – validation I’m not knocking mathematics mind you Gary Wayne although I know it seems I am. It’s _because_ I hold the highest respect for its unbelievable power that I give it some extra criticism. I don’t argue to win; I argue to learn and increase overall knowledge; getting agreement is a nice bonus. Were I on the Ship of Theseus I wouldn’t be worrying so much whether the ship was the same or different… I’d probably be the guy swapping the deck, noticing the same and different planks… dirtying up the new ones and cleaning up the rotting ones so they become .. just a ship with no paradox. Time scrubbing I guess.
  • Kenneth Udut William KuchWe could start a political campaign within the worlds of the sciences, religions, philosophy, mathematics, politics, business, culture and especially education to revolutionize our approaches to all of it as a species… but I think I might find a box with Shroedinger’s Cat complete with radioactive isotope sitting on my door step….
  • Kenneth Udut hence… why I dislke politics.. and it shows up _everywhere_… meh.

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