* The Theory of the Month Club

Mon, 6 Dec 1999 12:15:16 +0100 (MET)

In article <82bbcd$jmb$1@news.fsu.edu>,
jac@ibms48.scri.fsu.edu (Jim Carr) wrote:
> ... newsgroups trimmed ...
> In article <81e74n$sdm$1@nnrp1.deja.com>
> ca314159@bestweb.net writes:
> >
> >What's interesting is that these simulators really point
> >out how quantum effects are not limited to physical
> >systems but can be implemented in software.
> No surprise there; we have been doing that for decades.

Many of the "interpretations" are misleading if one "knows
the code". I guess that's what one has to deal with when one
follows the white rabbit.

There are interpretations that do seem to make sense though.

> One program I have used for shell-model calculations is actually
> "just" a glorified HP calculator that operates in a finite Hilbert
> space. Problems you mention concerning the size of that finite
> space are also familiar ones.

Isn't this memory (space) problem similar to virtual memory
on any PC ? Interference (superposition of bits) seems
an analog of lossy binary data-compression where you get the
fast gist of what you wanted, at the expense of resolution
(which in some cases, like non-deterministic crypto, is handy)

* The Theory of the Month Club *

Fuzzy theory starts off with the idea of discrete sets
and incorporating an idea not far removed from non-orthogonality
of states in quantum mechanics. Even Bart Kosko seemed to realize
this in his books Fuzzy Thinking and Fuzzy Engineering.

This idea of "fuzzy subsethood" sneaks into the more classical
set theory the effect of "phases relations" without explicitly
referring to them as such. In a similar manner, quantum mechanics
starts off with the idea of discrete particles and tacks on to
these the abstraction of a wavefunction to give them what is in
essence a _virtual_ phase.

Kosko, realizing this, is now doing work with neural nets,
stochastic resonance, and signal processing:

Bart Kosko

all but leaving behind scores of people still dredging the
fuzzy paradigm for all it's worth, which isn't necessarily a
bad thing in a pragmatic sense but in terms of theory it is
becoming obsolete, or rather morphing into something different:

Alot of fuzzy theorists are realizing that peddling software manuals
is both a lucrative business and that you can't base a living
on selling VisiCalc manuals for the rest of your life.

In theoretics, obsolesence is the order of the day, unless you
happen to be privy to _the_ Theory Of Everything (TOE). You might
say there's nothing bad about hawking the paradigm-of-the-month
to make a buck; after all, someone's using that paradigm to do
something useful for the short term. It is only a "wasted effort"
in the long term.

Even IBM learned those thousands and thousands of exquisitely
engineered IBM PCs, was an economical miscalculation of that
market's rate of increasing returns, and obsolesence.

The global trend turned away from quality and towards quantity
and now we are paving over our forests with waste paper and
derelict PC carcasses; the dinosaurs of the month. I suppose
one day they'll dig all those dinosaurs up and use the "oil"
for something.

We don't have to actually know what the TOE says in order to
say some things about it. We can say all the newsgroups will
start with something like:


etc. We can say also that alot of people will be rubbed the
wrong way by TOE because it tells them what the essential
and most economical basis of life is.

Here's what Kosko is pushing as the TOE for instance:

" But here Kosko announces that fuzzy logic is ready to do more.
Taxes, voting rights, abortion, warfare, genetic engineering,
deep physics, computer-generated art, the quest for transcendent
posthuman immortality--all of these and more, ..."

TOE, is supposed to be the ultimate, the universal the guiding
principle of this, that and the other thing, which is normally
attributed to some diety or dieties. But the long sought after
TOE or grand unified Theory of Everything is supposed to be
'scientifically' derived and not a more speculative religion,
yet it has the properties which we always considered as being
elements in the domain of religion and philosophy.

So which is it ? Science or Speculation ?

It's both of course ! It has to be, it's the theory of _everything_.
Sounds contradictory, but that's where fuzzy subsethood comes in and
quantum uncertainty, ...and alot of other useful paradigms; they're
really convergent on the same fundamental ideas that some enlightened
philosophers have known for millenia.

Of course it all gets paved over because what's the value of the truth,
if we're so readily rewarded for peddling lesser truths ? The value
of the truth only raises consumer consciousness to the point where they
are less likely to buy something with obvious obsolesense ? What
effect would TOE have on the economy ? Would it define such things
as morality and sanity ? Of course it would ! It's the theory of

If you look askew at what is happening around us, you'll see alot of
people preparing for this great change. We don't have to know the TOE
in any exact sense in order to see that we are very nearly convergent
upon it. There is an explosion of analogies and metaphors, the sudden
interest of Hollywood in unveiled realities, and conspiracies involving
extraterestrials, even Forbes is publishing an ongoing preparation for
the new global economy being forged by the WTO etc.:

Forbes ASAP

Here's a news clipping (CNN?) about the Seattle uprising:

WTO General-Director Mike Moore appealed to activists to protest
peacefully. "I believe a debate is good. I just hope it's peaceful,"
Moore said Monday. "It's difficult to maintain a dialogue if people do
foolish things that disrupt the flow of information and advice."

It seems the WTO general director in this instance is much better
informed than the tree-hugging protestors who think they know what
is happening but really have it all together backwards (Simpson's
Paradox ?).

We don't allow accusation without representation in a court of law.
The price we pay for freedom is similarly, no demonstration without
representation, outside of a court of law. Masked demonstrators are
not accountable for their actions, and in a court of law this is not
permitted. It should likewise not be permitted outside of court of law.

Here's a little relevant Zen in C, written by a friend of mine (hf):

finger != *(finger) == moon

People are even finding a mental basis where all those metaphors in
the old myths "make sense". But this isn't happening to everyone.
Alot of people are clinging to that old blanket that they used for
so long.

In a completely insane world the norm is the unexpected, and
sanity clings to any sense of predictability, even if the only
the prediction left is that the unexpectedness, is the only thing
that can be predicted.

Thats where we are now with quantum theory and now we are learning
more about 'sanity'. That it is not to be based on predictability
of the "normal" modes of society but rather on complete
time-invariant density matrix properties ?

Are we constantly are struggling to remain "sane" against some kind
of Prigogine or Fuzzy entropic definition of sanity ? Do we have to
peridocally recharge our "sanity batteries" ?

If there is an outcome which is known a priori, the paths to that
outcome must agree _at the outcome_ though the intermediate values
of the paths need not agree before the outcome.

If there is an outcome which is not known a priori but instead some
"goal" or "predicted outcome" is substituted for an definite a priori
known outcome, then different paths are possible which obtain different
results for different goals. But each path achieves its goal
legitimately and it was unresonable to state that one is "wrong" and
the other was "right", when the goal itself was not known a priori ?

Sent via Deja.com http://www.deja.com/
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