February 5th, 2008

beartato phd

(no subject)

Was reading an old Baez and Dolan paper from '95; the tables on pages 17 and 24 suddenly made the "periodic table" of n-category theory (of which they are depictions, after a fashion) make a little more sense to me. Most of all how as you go down the table, you introduce more and more structure; a binary operation on objects, a symmetry, a braiding, etc. and if you go far enough to the left (collapsing various levels of n-cells to singletons) these operations become identities because the only thing left for these operations to be is the identity.

An interesting related blog post.
beartato phd

(no subject)

Here is a political post endorsing (surprise, surprise) Obama in rather enjoyable detail: which is to say, it makes me happy that there are such details at all, whether bad or good, and as it happens they are rather positive.

However, there is an obvious sampling problem reading news on the internet from a few sources, especially when those few sources are mostly (in political volume, both in the sense of amount and loudness) reddit.

Anyone know of similarly detailed articles praising other candidates' (in either party) voting record, past leadership record, etc.?

'Cause this one really made me feel far more hopeful about, you know, government as a mechanism than I have in a while. For it is not about praising fluffy charisma and properly leaderish gazing off into the sunset, but about praising someone's ability to cleverly arrange regulations and persuade people to adopt them so as to make the machinery of government — you know, all that stuff that we presumptuously (but, I think, occasionally correctly) suppose that we can do better than markets — more effective, more open, and less corruptible, and more bearable to the people it affects.