Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Apocalypto - High Replay Value



First a warning, this review has a bunch of spoilers. On the other hand, like 'Passion' you can enjoy it even if you know how it ends.

I really enjoyed this movie, but not for the reasons that got me to the theater. I rarely make it to the theater, and when I do I like a good visual experience. That is what got me into Apocalypto. And while the visuals were good they weren't captivating.

Everything I thought I liked about it was confirmed when I saw the European ships from the beach. Sometimes it seems like an artist is broadcasting a message, but it is in code for a certain few to break. When I saw the ships it felt like I had broken the code.

This movie has a few levels to it. As Gibson said, "It is the story of one man's stuggle for his family," but there is more. There seemed to me to be a theme of one-up-manship. First the tribe over the boar. And the Mayans over the tribes, which then got me wondering about the Europeans.

I also liked how the chase ended. That was something else that made me feel like I was 'on code'. It was the leader of the hunters that was our hero's real antagonist. Once he was killed that hunt seemed, for the most part, to be over. There were two hunters left so it went on nominally, but they would no longer be willing to sacrifice themselves to the hunt. Then on seeing the ships, they did, in fact, let our hero go on his merry way.

Now don't think me uncritical. I know you don't sprint in an endurance contest. And if you are going to run you have to eat, and if you take the time to eat you might as well wash off some of the blue paint. It might help you blend in with the local flora. Or perhaps they were just tactical errors made by our hero to balance out so many of the things he did right.

Either way it seems like the production team got a lot of things right too. Now that I know we are on the same page I look forward to watching it again. I'm sure I will see many things I didn't the first time. Perhaps I might even take away a few morals.

This might even end up being one of those movies I watch again and again until I can see through the narrative and the story of production starts to reveal itself.

Friday, September 15, 2006

FreeCell Game 1

FreeCell MetaPost

Clear Column 3 <======= Objective
-10c to 8c <====== Hints
-Jh to 9h
bank - 4s 9s 2h <===== End State
Cards left: 52

Clear column 6
-4 on 3 in col 3
-7h, 6c on col 8
bank - 2h Qc 9s
Cards left: 49

Stack col 6 Qc to 6c
Bank - 9s 2h
Cards left: 49

Clear col 7
Bank - Kh 4d 9s
Cards left: 47

Clear col 5
-9s on 8h col 7
Bank - 4h 4d Js Kh
Cards left: 46

Stack Qc to 3d

Clear col 4
Bring down Kh
Stack Qh to 4d
Stack Qd to 3s
-10c to 6s in col 7
Bank - none
Cards left: 46


Clear col 2

Clear col 1

FreeCell MetaPost

I've heard of people embarking on projects to solve all off the Windows FreeCell games in sequence. As I did with Gridlock before I will start writing solutions for FreeCell games.

I will start at game 1 and stop whenever I feel like it. I will likely never make it to game 1M, the last in FreeCell v5.1. I am willing to accept help.


Solved Games:

000001 000002 000003 000004

Unsolvable Games:
011,982 || 146,692 || 186,216 || 455,889 || 495,505 || 512,118 || 517,776 || 781,948

Note: I couldn't find any proof that these games were unsolvable. They were demonstrated as unsolvable when several Freecell solving programs couldn't find a solution. Please leave a comment if you have a proof, know where to find one, can solve any of these games, or even can think of a way to rigorously prove a Freecell game is unsolvable.
Wikipedia - Freecell

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Stuck to the Basic

What can I say? To all the nay sayers in the house you gave me enough spite juice to make it through the 8 weeks of hell that is Basic Training for the Canadian Forces. I don't think I could have done it without you. You know who you are. More stories to come.

For those interested I am now in Regina Sask visiting with my family. I will be back on little ole PEI in a few days now. Interestingly when traveling abroad when I tell people I am from PEI there is one thing they tend to say to me before asking about the potato thing.. they usually say 'You don't sound like you are from PEI.' I will have to work on that.

Wednesday, May 3, 2006

Bureaucratic Authority is Irrational

Ever just write what is in your head to get it on paper. I was doing that when I stumbled on this memory of when I was a kid. I was babysitting for a family in the neighbourhood, two kids but they were only a few years younger than me. I heard one is now on his way to being a preist.

It was the summer so I was doing 8-6'ish depending on when the parents left and when they got home from their 9-5, 5 days a week. One saturday morning I got a call asking where I was. And like the few Saturday mornings before I was sleeping. Apparently they had asked for me to be there a few days before. So I rushed down and slept on their couch while their children played.

The interesting part happened when the mother got home. I had been sitting on the floor watching tv with the kids. She asked the kids to excuse us, she sat on the edge of the couch, sat up very straight, looked down at me and proceded to tell me the havoc I had caused.

The thing is that even as a kid I knew the effect this was supposed to have, and I knew the effect it was having. I was supposed to feel humbled and embarassed while I felt like I was watching a piece of theater. But she was commited to her role so what else could I do.. I faked it. I counted 'steamboats' between making eye contact, I lowered my head and fidgeted with my hands. Now I wasn't just watching a piece of theater, I was in it.

The problem was that I was still thinking rationally. Her displays of authority were intended to overwhelm my reason so that she could appeal to my emotion. And that is what bureaucatic authority is about. Had she noticed I was still in a rational mindset she could have tried to appeal to my reason and been just as effective as if she had overwhelmed me and appealed to my emotion. But in appealing to my reason she wouldn't have been selling bureaucratic authority. She could could have painted the picture 'These are the things I need from you and this is what you get in return,' and so forth, and rather than pretending to respect her office of 'mother of the house' I likely would have (and perhaps did) find respect for her ability to organize and manage the exchange.

Respect for offices is what Max Weber refered to as bureaucratic authority while respect for abilities is charismatic authority. But selling respect for an office is irrational. The office itself has not abilities sperate from the person who occupies it.

On the other hand, if I may get a little geopolitical, consider bush. It is now widely accepted that a one-eyed retarded monkey (bush has two eyes, right?) could have done a better job than him. And yet the country has not decended into chaos. I would argue that is because of the power of the office, which would be derived from a legacy of great(er) men that preceded him. So the country remains centered around him.. or rather his office.

This is all to say that it is rational to follow bureaucratic authority to about the same extent as everyone around you. The flexability would be for activism. 'Around' is also open to interpretation. But it is history, and legacy that builds this common vision of the authority of the office. (I'm going to try to use that.)


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Monday, April 24, 2006

A Question of Maturity

Most people seem to measure maturity as a function of how long it was since you were born and how easily they can get you to do what they say. (Three times now I told that kid to erect the flaming cross on the neighbour's lawn and it's still not done. Goddamn kid's got a lot to learn!)

While age is about the best indicator of physical maturity, I think a good indicator of social/psychological maturity is how easily they are influanced by the salesman (while still being sensitive to the well intentioned efforts of the advisor). There are some situations that reoccur so many times in life we should eventually know what questions to ask, and know when the salesman is getting us to focus on the wrong ones. The mature person should be able to put the issue in a more meaningful frame.

A simple example is 'Buy or Rent'. Not anything specific, well, maybe a widget... just follow along with me. You need a widget. You have decided on the make, model, where to get it, the only question left if buy or rent. If you buy it you make a down payment and the reoccuring fees are much lower. If you rent the widget the payments are higher but you don't have to make the large initial payment.

Enter the salesman. Assume that he wants you to buy the widget. Maybe he gets a bonus if you buy, or for whatever reason he wants you to buy. He can then easily play down the burden of the down payment, How many times do you eat out a week.. cook at home for the next X weeks and it is paid for, and play up the reoccuring payments, Do you really want to have to face a bill of X every month? And it makes sense. If this is the frame issue stays in then buying makes alot of sense.

Likewise if the salesman wants you to rent then he plays up the issue of the down payment and makes the reoccuring payments seem managable. And when he is done talking renting makes sense in this frame of reference.

Many people will make the decision based on the integrity of the salesman. If they think he is not trustworthy they will do the opposite of what he suggests. But remember the indicator for maturity: focusing on the wrong questions. This issue is about whether you should buy or rent a widget. How did the integrity of the salesman become an issue?

In this highly idealized example there are two questions that matter: How much and how long?
Of course it doesn't have to be this formal, but the curves are how much money you have spent over time. The red is if you buy (then maintain), the blue is if you rent. Once you get here the question becomes are you still going to need the widget after the curves cross? If so you will save money by buying it. Solved! And there was no need to speculate on the integrity of the salesman.

This model is also useful for issues of initial investments of time and attention. But instead of starting over every time you encounter a situation like this you can start off with a few speicalized tools then get ready to improvise.

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Thursday, April 20, 2006

Feedback

So I had a job interview. It was going really well, like really well, the interviewer was laughing and carrying on and such. I was certain the job was mine. Then I diplomatically told him to grab his ankles and think of England.

As a preamble I have to say that I have no idea when it comes to the labour market. Have I written this before. I have said it many times. Not only this, but I have never heard anybody talk about the labour market in a way that made me think they had any better idea than me (though they may have said it very forcefully). I say the problem is a lack of differentiated feedback. For every application submitted you either get a call or you don't. This is a very hard to learn anything with this limited information. It would be like trying to learn calculus from morse code bips and beeps, though not knowing morse code. And now the story:

I'm pretty sure most of us have experienced the demoralization of applying for an entery level job. This one involved my resume, copying the information on to their standard application, a personality profiling, an IQ and a CSQ (Customer Service Qutient) test. I was certain the personality profiling part would trip me up, but I guess I played the character of a subservient authoritarian better than I thought I had. Or for whatever reason I was called in for an interview.

Things were going well. He stopped in the middle of a speech and asked if I had any questions. I refered to my list and we agreed most of them, including what about my file had appealed to him, could wait til later. Now, with the promise of actual, real life feedback I went into full extrovert mode. I became animated, used vivid language and images, and probably disclosed a little more than I normally would have.

Then came my turn. What about my application had appealed to him? He told me that I had retail experience and I wasn't in school.. and stopped. And kept a straight face. Apparently there was nothing in my testing, personal history, animation or images that appealed to him. Wow, did that feel like a waste of time and effort. He then countered with 'Why should I offer the job to you?' Rather than telling him that I had retail experience and I wasn't in school I told him I wasn't certain he should. I shook the man's hand, excused myself and walked out.

On the plus side I had two more jobs as a teaching substitute.

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Monday, April 17, 2006

Dissenter

Is there some rule against commenting that you disagree with an blog article? I've experiemented with it a little. In the most high profile instance an established blogger whom I regard rather highly pushed the limits of his expertise a little too far as to draw conclusion that would make sense if you only read his column, but otherwise felt very wrong. I wanted to be courteous about it so I wrote a one line comment that I disagreed with many of his conclusions.

I could have gone into specifics if I felt the need but I like to know efforts will be effective before I commit. I thought there was a small chance that I could be asked for specifics or further information of some kind. This didn't happen. I didn't get flamed or anything, what happened only seems like a small step up. His regular readers pumped the comment box full of uncritical praise. They would usually have something more to say than 'Oh, you are so wize.' It struck me as a little childish.

That is why this is such a big deal. Dita, of hellodita.com, has assumed the voice of the silent majority. I have spoken to enough people to know most of what I say is not easy to swallow. But you might never know it reading comments.

My greatest hope would be that this is a small step toward meaningful debate in the blog-o-sphere.

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Friday, April 14, 2006

Story time Pt. 1

I am a deciple of Darwinism. 'Natural selection' just might have been the two most insightful words ever uttered in history. I found my appreciation for the survival of the fittest model by pushing it as far as I could and seeing that even in extreme cases it seemed to have something useful to contribute, either in explaination or prediction.

Not always though. There has been the standing issue of the blood clot. A blood clot is a synthesis of about 50 protiens, all of which are necessary to make anything useful. I.E if you take any one of them away you get a protien soup rather than a blood clot. This is a problem for Darwinism which tends to build everything in small, independant steps. I now suspect that the clot was built in small steps up to 100 or so protiens then withered down to the 50 specialized protiens we have now. But to my knowledge a robust model is still pending.

There is also the problem of the inert gene sequences. Richard Dawkins helped with that problem by supposing gene-centric, rather than organism-centric, evolution in his book The Selfish Gene. In this same book was the seeds of the new science of memetics. Memetics helped me get over most of the other problems I had with Darwinism, but one major issue remains.

There is an understandable story that tells of how molecules on a lifeless earth came to be reorganized to build such wonderful things as the societies and institutions we have today. I have reason to believe such a story exists but that certain chapters of it have not been written yet. The major unwritten chapter in my story is the development of sexual reproduction.

With the help of memetics and Steve Grand's book Creation, I can follow how in the primordial soup there would have been created a few molecules that, by some aspect of their nature, directly or indirectly encouraged other similar molecules to be formed. These molecules would have undergone exponential growth until they reached some natural carrying capacity.

This point could likely have been the first time in history survival of the fittest was put into full effect. This is when the small variations in copying during the exponential growth would have given some molecules advantages over others to have access to the resources necessary to make further copies. The advantages would have been slight, perhaps not much more powerful than chance, but unlike chance these advantages would have been consistent and would therefore shape populations.

As the competition built innovation upon innovation, the molecules would have grown more complex. The larger molecules would now need many substances and catalysts to synthesize themselves and could now be seen to amass them in a sort of bag, perhaps with a lipid lining that we might want to call a cell, though they would have been much smaller and many orders of magnatude less sophisticated. But it might have been a distant relative of the cell nucleus.

Many intermediate forms later, the duplication process got very sophisticated. Another layer of encapsulation has been added to readily store even more substances and catalysts. Many variations of cells have likely experimented with growing even larger but the thickness of the membrane necessary to contain that much mass wasn't effective. A few might have tried moving toward adding a third membrane but it added complexities that just didn't work.

A few of the cells got lucky and stumbled onto something that did work. They started collecting or synthesizing molecules that were sensitive to things like heat and light, and others found more ways to get information about their environment. Some would take in a sample from the outside world and bring it in for analysis.

Information about your environment is not much help if you can't do anything about it so response mechanisms were developed. These may have included propulsion and a way of releasing specific chemicals when they found themselves in a certain kind of enviroment.

When in the presence of other cells there would have been interesting releases of chemicals that triggered a counter-release, and so on. This could easily be considered the first communication. As time went on and complexity grew, these communications could come to include vibrations and discharges of light and heat. The sophistication of communication got to a level where other cells could be coordinated so that they actually worked with each other instead of against each other. Being in a crowded area still meant you had less of a stake in the food in area, but woking as a network took less effort to capture it. These were perhaps the first societies and made possible new biological forms like sponges.


And I think that is all for now. I may continue this later.. probably in another post.

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

That's outrageous

I read the story on the CBC site titled: 16 months for drunk driving. First thing that I thought was 'That's outrageous'. That sounds pretty damn high. But I kept reading to find he plead guilty to impaired driving causing death. Then I thought 'That's outrageous'. That sounds pretty damn low. Then I kept reading to find that the victims had been passengers in his car. I.E. they chose to ride with a drunk man and not wear seat belts. Then I thought 16 months was a high, not outrageous, but high. Then I thought he is only going to serve about a third of that, I think. So that sounds about right, I guess. Then I thought 'I've never been to jail, I have no idea what kind of a punishment 5 months would be in jail.' My best guess is that it is probably not much different from being really poor. Either way you would have people telling you what to do all the time.

Links: 16 months for drunk driving
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Thursday, April 6, 2006

Thoughts on Democracy

End of history, my ass.

Should we really be surprised that your vote is no longer your own? Now it effectively belongs to whoever owns the media or some other factory of political authority. But this has happened before, so should we be surprised?

Every society must be built on something that begins with the people. No society can exist without the people contributing to it. With democracy we tried to formalize it and called the unit of contribution a vote. In it's natural state the unit of contribution is labour. So democracy, in the sense that all power originates from the people, is not only the natural state, but it is inescapable. Autocracy arises out of the way that the labour is organized. That is to say people can be organized to labour toward their own oppression. Likewise, people can be organized to vote in favour of their own oppression. Formal democracy seems like a small detour that ultimately leads to the age-old revolutionary cycle.

I hope I'm wrong.

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Wednesday, April 5, 2006

Mamma, I'm comming.

Looks like I might get to see my mother. I haven't seen her since 1992. OMG, that is 14 years. And she hasn't seen me in 14 years. I sent her some grad photos and we talk on the phone some times but, yeah, it's not the same.

She lives in Saskatchewan. She has family there. My sister, Kim, and my brother, Craig, have both gone to see her. But neither I nor my other brother Wesley have gone to see her. We have never been big on travel. I can usually find enough wonder at home to keep me occupied.

The trip proposed so far has me and Wes following Kim to Sask as she then continues on to BC. She's done this trip a few times on her own so I know I'm in good hands. There are still some finer details to work out but I think I am going to get to see my mother.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2006

And yet

I feel almost no need to write. I know it's been a while since I wrote something substantive and yet I feel little need to do something about it. I think I have made some interesting observations about the role of fantasy in ideology, politics and even economics. Relationships are evolving, one project has ended, another is slowly but surely begining.. and yet I feel no need to share the details.

I think it might be because I have had opportunities recently to apply my ideas and so have felt less need to vent them literally.

Later.

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Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Ha, Words

Ever notice that we 'rewind' DVD's? And we 'roll down' power windows? I wonder if electric cars will keep their 'gas pedal'.

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Friday, March 17, 2006

Stuff Part II

I got my first substitute teaching gig yesterday. I taught phys. ed. For someone who holds himself in such intellectual esteem I think I held my own on the badminton court. But those sixth graders can put up a good fight. And so, of course, today half of my muscles are in revolt, but I was able to get back to my regular sleeping pattern. That is getting up just in time for Regis and Kelly (on the west coast).

A few nights a week I also teach an after school computer class. We are getting near the end of the program so there is a push to get loose ends tied up. After a few glib, though well spirited, remarks one of the students said, "You are not a very good grown-up." And so I accepted the invitation to review my day, and in the end I agreed. There were also a few small things I had done that morning that I wouldn't have had I my wits about me.

Though I like to think the redeeming factor is that he felt comfortable telling me he thought I had made a mistake. And I like to think adequate sleep will address the issue. I don't foresee the students breaking any windows on my behalf.

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Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Oh my, UPEI

UPEI is in the news again. This time with the possibility of a teacher strike. I hope the significance of this is recognised. It is a demonstration of the separability of the professors and the administration. They have showed they are two independant bodies with different goals.

Myself being a youth, I still see the University from the perspective of the student. I hope the Student Union takes this opportunity to demonstrate their independance from the administration while it is in a compromised position and cannot acutely retaliate for such a display. After the 'toon situation I think such a display is sorely needed.

Ideally I would like to get UPEI out of the national presses to let recent events fade into archive, at least in the national consciousness. I think Ryan Gallant is smart enough to find a way to make a local statement without drawing national attention, but I wonder if he has the foresight, among other things.

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Links: Strike vote at UPEI

Monday, March 13, 2006

Memetics

It's great that I have an excuse to write about memetic, too bad it is a political defense.

Watching documentaries is becoming a favourite past time. (Past times are becoming increasingly important.) I recently took in Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room. A good watch, I recommend it. However there was a 2 second reference to memetics that shook me a little. The reference was rather to Richard Dawkins' book The Selfish Gene, the memeticist's bible. 'Enron' says that this book was a favourite book of Jeff Skilling, ex-Enron CEO. They say the book is about 'how human nature is steered by greed and competition.'

I find the ideas of memetics very useful in dealing with many complex problems. While selfish genes is a central theme to memetics, selfish people is only a minor theme and greedy people as a theme that is neither mentioned nor relevant. In fact, one of the major achievements of memetics is to explain selfless behavior found in nature. Something strict Darwinism could never account for was why some animals would sacrifice themselves for anything other than their offspring. Yet it happens and Dawkins explains it by serving the selfishness of the genes (and memes) common to the benefactor and the beneficiary.

While I think some ideas should be marginalized, they should be marginalized because of the nature of the idea, not because of its associtions. Dianetics should be marginalized, for example, because they don't produce any results desirable to its practioner or the community to which he belongs. But Dianetics should not be side lined because L. Ron Hubbard is a bad man.

Even Darwin's Origin of Species was almost never published for fear of the blowback from the church. Memetics has been a growing science for 30 years now. They are powerful ideas that should be valued by what they can do, not by the misinterpretation of one man.

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Saturday, March 11, 2006

Useful Fiction

We don't hear these words put together enough. A useful fiction is an idea with limited use. A lot of categorical type ideas apply here. Good/bad words, masculine/feminine, plant/animal... All of these ideas are useful in some situations, but when you try to apply them to all situations you make life difficult for the rest of us.

Aesop's fables, for example. They are good stories to tell. They are useful stories to tell. But I wouldn't want to associate myself with people who think a fox and a raccoon ever had a conversation about the right way to eat a tomato. But letting that slide for a moment can help you put some other stuff in order.

This is where it starts to get a little technical. Watching What the Bleep Do We Know may put things clearer. Well, it will basically have a bunch of people tell you about what I am about to say is bunk. I guess there are a few useful insights in there.

What I want to call bunk is this objective probability that has found a home in quantum mechanics and is starting to spray all over the place. If you understand that probability is subjective, something used to fill in as-of-yet unknown information you can stop reading. Like if you flip a coin into the air and you knew everything about the coin and the table it was going to land on, at this point it wouldn't be a matter of probability, you would know which side it was going to land on. It is only when you don't have all this information that probability becomes useful to predict what is going to happen.

Then in 1927 Heisenberg published his Uncertainty Principle. This stated that for any given particle the more precisely we knew its position the less precisely we could know its velocity. This would be like saying we could never know both the spin of a coin and its distance from the table. If you can't know both parts it becomes necessary to talk about it in terms of probability.

But back to this idea of useful fiction. These very smart scientists came up with very useful ways to think about the probability of the very small things they were studying. The only problem is that they started to believe them. They started to believe, not only do we have to treat these particles as probabilities, but that they actually were these blurs of probabilities.

This lead to a paradox. How come all observations show solid, stable, deterministic forms? They resolved this by saying that when two pieces of matter interact they collapse into one of the probable states. In the most advanced forms of the psychosis blur doesn't collapse until it interacts with a conscious mind. This of course makes us feel pretty special, but now it leads to another paradox of how consciousness developed without definite matter. And I'm sure they have their best people on it.

I wonder if it will occur to them to question the question. That this didn't happen. There is no such thing as probabilistic matter. It is just a useful fiction. It is a good way to talk about matter if you want to predict it's behavior. Other than that it's useless.

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Thursday, March 9, 2006

Vandals

Sometimes I am shocked at how different my views are from others. Take this story for example. "One B.C. school had a camera installed to monitor the principal's office after the windows were broken 15 times." I wonder if it occured to anybody that the principal might be fucked up. Ear plugs don't make engine knock go away. Pain killers don't heal you. Pings, pain and broken windows are signs that something is wrong. Fix it. And if after your best efforts the students still want to break your windows we will replace you with somebody our children don't metaphorically want to kick the shit out of.

Talk about freedom of expression. If somebody hates you they will find a way to let you know. Mr. Principal, do you have somebody escort you to your car? I would start. Or I would give students another method of tell you why they are willing to destroy their own property to get the point across. Because it is partly theirs. If it has to be replaced it will affect their lives. If it is not replaced it will affect their learning environment. And, yes, kids can put these things together. I'm slowly finding it is exactly this sort of thing that kids understand better than us grown ups. They understand how their actions affect their environment. They understand the value of feedback. They understand the difference between a show of strength and actual strength.

Take a lesson. Make a note when they tell you 15 times there is a problem they think you can fix. Then fix it.

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Links: Island high school getting surveillance cameras after vandalism

Wednesday, March 8, 2006

Tyranny of Traffic Lights

I just got my first moving violation.

I was on my way back from a Canadian Unity Council discussion on the Atlantic Canadian brain drain. I was seated at a table with a few managers, a lawyer and the like. I started off slow dropping points where I felt the need, but most of the discussion questions seemed rather silly or irrelevant so I didn't feel a need to say much. I suppose what I did say made an impression though because eventually my opionion was expressly solicited. When I got the table away from the discussion questions ideas started to fly. Education for entrepreneurs, trade strategies, how use government to encourage a stable environment for commerce rather than regulate it. It was beautiful. But then, of course, the report of the discussion was based on the questions so none of the magic was reported. Bah! At least I know I can captivate an audience of respectable people.

Then I ran a red light. The nearest cars were 30 seconds away. One of them just happened to be a cop. Even the cop said it looked safe to go but had to issue me a ticket. He also seemed to give me more detail than he had to about bringing it to court. What I did was safe. And waiting for the light would have made those cars have to stop unnecessarily. So waiting for the green would have been less productive. What are laws for if not to promote safety and productivity? It seems like a forest for the trees kind of thing. I might as well put it on the record.

See you in court.


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Tuesday, March 7, 2006

Friday, March 3, 2006

Lies Often Told

I've been comparing the way I deal with authority with the way most others do. Those who know me are aware of the stark contrast. Many have no idea what could possibly be going through my mind when I pull some of what I do. Admittedly, what follows is an ego-centric way to explain the differences, but centering on me seems like a good place to start. Though it would be a shitty place to end.

I find those trying to push the limits of their authority tend to do it by convincing subordinates of two things: what you want you can't get from anywhere else; and there is nothing else worthy of your loyalty. Some of the more archaic institutions do this very explicitly. The church says that only they can get you to heaven, and heaven is the only place you want to be. Then consider educational institutions. Repeat of church, but replace heaven with board room. I've also gotten similar things from employers whose lives would be easier if I believed all I wanted was money and they were the only place to get it. If you do come to believe such things the institution becomes stronger, so they have good reason to try.

To give a quick rebuttal: There is more than one way to skin a cat. Whatever you want there are infinite ways to get it. And secondly, everybody has enemies. To piss him off means to gain more favour from the other. It is really hard to piss everybody off simultaniously. Not that I have tried, but if it could be done easily I would know it. Not that all things are equally deserving of your loyalty, but those most deserving are those that value it most. Anybody who feels they are entitled to my loyalty will find us in an unhealthy relationship.

Now to defend the liars. It is not so much that they lie. I'm not even sure they try to suggest, but what they seem to do is make an environment where people who don't believe these things are not welcome. This type of environment is the typical setting for the 'your either with them or with us' kind of rhetoric. Interestingly, 'they' may even by a partner, but since this would center parts of your loyalty outside the circle it cannot be tolerated.

For example, in dealings in customer service I tend to have a significant portion of my loyalty go to the customers I am serving. Now consider the conflict that happens when I am given direction that is bad for the customers by a superior who demands total loyalty. If I objected I would get the 'your with me or against me' rhetoric and then I will have to quit to show what happens when such ultimatums are put to me. The other option is to follow the letter of his instructions while steering the spirit of my actions to reflect my loyalty to those I serve not because I have to, but because I choose to.

Loyalty to the customers is obviously not bad for the business. But from the management perspective it turns me into a quantum blur rather than a newtonian cog. Interestingly, quantum blurs can still be managed effectively and predictibly. (They get organized into all the wonderful things you see around you.) But it is a different way of thinking. I'll stick with the guys that get it.

An easy solution might be to train myself to show total loyalty to my superiors. I'm sure I could do just that. But then think about the richness of life that would be lost to have the essence of all decisions come from just one source. Or even to try to artifically limit the sources at all. Perhaps it is just me but I would think such a life as too simple, too easy, too boring. I refuse to let my life become boring. It might happen, but there will be a fight.

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Monday, February 27, 2006

Marked up books

One reason I think I like used books more than new, other than the 90% off, is the mark of the person who had it before me (and perhaps the few before that). I like seeing the pages they dog eared, the passages they underlined, the notes they made and sometimes even diagrams and such on the end papers. Those are a real treat. Those and notes like "HOG WASH" and an emphatic line drawn across the entire page.

Once I got a book, it was so tragic, with whited-out notes on just about every second page. "NOO!! When you did that you destroyed half the value of the book." And probably wasted a fair bit of time in the process. And it was the old fashioned white out that you had to wait for it to dry. So you can picture her brushing it on and holding it open and blowing on it before she could turn to the next page.

If it's your book treat it like it is your book. Let it show what is important to you. If you think it might be passed on perhaps avoid vulgarity in a children's book and keeping the spine healthy is a good idea. Missing pages get to me a little bit but I wouldn't worry about it.

Let people hear your critique if only one person at a time.

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Sunday, February 26, 2006

Justice and Economics

Justice and Economics are not so different. For clarification by 'economics' I mean 'economic policy' and by 'justice' I mean the 'justice system'. Even so they probably still seem miles apart but I stand by my convictions. The unifying factor of justice and economics is that they both influence the behavior of populations over time. I put some time into that line so I'll write it again:

They influence the behavior of populations over time.

By 'influence' I am looking to contrast it with 'dictate'. Even the most insightful legislation will never understand all of what goes into even a single interaction, and so cannot foresee all the reasons a particular action would happen, and so cannot remove all reason for it. I think this especially needs acknowledgement in the area of criminal justice where so many see the solution as more force rather than more finesse.

I say 'behavior' rather than 'values'. In considering a price floor keeping prices artificially high. Though individuals may trade different things for it, relative to the population it is still going to be consumed the same way, and it is in the way a good is consumed or used that it is given a value. Though justice and economics may influence values, they must do so indirectly through an intermediary and the effects will likely be unpredictable.

'Populations' was chosen over 'individuals'. These tools are far too broad to have a predictable impact on any one person, but they can be used to channel groups of people. Also, there are far more effective ways to get to a single person.

'Over time.' I think this may be the most important part. The effects of economics and justice will be different on individuals than it will be on the population as a whole and it takes time to bare this out. Good policy will account for all of this.

To further the interplay between justice and economics, any end that can be pursued by one can be pursued by the other. You may notice the ultimate hand at play in the structure of economic activity, contracts, taxes and such, is the law. And while fines are a part of law, any legal disincentive could theoretically be substituted with a fine or tax of some sort. Legal and financial incentives are likewise translatable. While this does not make them good ideas, it could be done.

Speaking of bad ideas consider for a moment a violence tax. So any money that exchanged hands with the intent of causing violence, like a contract killing or payment for the severe beating of a high school janitor, or as a result of violence, a robbery or a mugging, would be taxed at a higher rate, or maybe on top of other applicable taxes. There are a few interesting side effects of such a policy.

I think there are two sides to take in first. One where people report such things and willfully pay the tax. In this case there is free money and free information about an 'industry' we didn't have before and can therefor influence even further. The other side obviously is the scenario where they don't willfully report and pay. In this case investigations into such activities may, eventually, pay for themselves in recouped taxes. (Not to mention not having to pay to keep them in jail.)

By the very nature of violence it has to be against someone, the victim. It is very hard to run a busness if you constantly keep making yourself enemies. If you do so you have to protect yourself from them, but this is very hard if your 'industry' happens to pay a premium tax rate.

I wonder to what extent the tax man could replace the armed guard.

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Saturday, February 25, 2006

Russell's Paradox

For those who don't know the extent of my geekdom get ready.

I was introduced to Russell's Paradox as a kid in the form of Who Shaves The Barber?. It tells of a town where a barber shaves everybody in the town who does not shave himself. Most people in the town neatly fall into a category of either shaving themselves or not. But things get tricky when you try to categorize the barber. If it is considered that he does not shave himself then he would have to be shaved by the barber, himself, which contradicts.....

In set theory the paradox is stated as the set of all sets that do not contain themselves.

For my analysis we will use the definition of the set to make a system: a test set, and a validator. Each will have a yes or no value for contains self. If the test set has the 'contains self' value marked as 'yes', then the test set is a member of its proper set. If the validator is marked as 'yes' for 'contains self', then the test set must contain itself to be valid. This can be expressed in a table like this:





Contains Self

YesNo
ValidatorX
Test SetX

So the validator says the test set has to contain itself and it is marked as such. If only that were the end of it. Let's read the definition of the set again: the set of all sets that do not contain themselves. But the test set does contain itself, so it should not be part of the set. That is to say now our validator is not marked properly. So we can then mark the validator property of 'contains self' to 'no'. And we get this:








Contains Self

YesNo
Validator
X
Test SetX

But it can easily be seen that the test set is now invalid as it does not agree with the validator. But that can be easily fixed by making the test set not contain itself.








Contains Self

YesNo
Validator
X
Test Set
X

So now the set is valid, but is the validator? Again the definition: the set of all sets that do not contain themselves. Yeah, it has to be changed. Since the test set does not contain itself the validator should be marked as yes. And we get this:








Contains Self

YesNo
ValidatorX
Test Set
X

But test set has become invalid again so it has to be changed to no to make it valid like this:








Contains Self

YesNo
ValidatorX
Test SetX


And if you were paying attention you'll notice this is where we started.

To summarize the rule for the set is that it must match the validator. But the validator must not match the set. So the set chases the validator and the validator runs away giving us the four states we saw above, though never to settle on any one of them. It is a virtual perpetual motion machine. When I think about it this way it is strange to think of it as a paradox. Consider the set of all sets that do contain themselves. Is this not considered a paradox? If we did a similar experiment on this definition we would find that it could stabilize in either of two states (Either the first or third state above). If everything that cannot achieve a stable static state is a paradox where does that put, well, everything in the natural world that continuously needs energy and minerals and puts out waste. Is life a paradox? Perhaps, but I like to think not.

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Links: Russell's paradox

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Johnston's Dictionary: 'Management'

The art of helping people thrive dealing with your problems.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Censorship on the Island

National Post

Thursday, February 16, 2006

What follows is an open letter, dated Feb. 13, from the Canadian Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship to Dr. Wade MacLauchlan, president of the University of Prince Edward Island.

- - -

Dear President MacLauchlan:

I am writing to you as president of the Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship. We are a national organization of university faculty members and interested others who are dedicated to the defence of academic freedom and reasoned debate. For further information, please visit our website at www.safs.ca.

We are writing to strongly protest the actions of the University of Prince Edward Island administration in seizing copies of the student newspaper, The Cadre (issue dated Feb. 8), and preventing their distribution. UPEI's public statement of Feb. 8 that censorship of The Cadre can be justified "on grounds that publication of the caricatures represents a reckless invitation to public disorder and humiliation" is contrary to the duty of all university presidents to maintain their campuses as places where debate of controversial issues may take place. Fear of possible "mob action" must not be allowed to dictate to UPEI or any other Canadian university what ideas its students and faculty may express, disseminate and debate. By censoring this debate at your campus rather than taking the necessary steps to provide appropriate security to allow debate to happen, you have encouraged the view that the threat of violence, real or imagined, is an effective way to challenge ideas with which one disagrees.

The decision as to what is to be included in a newspaper must be made by the editorial board, based on their understanding of the newsworthiness of the story. Those who disagree with the newspaper's coverage or viewpoint can register their opposition by writing letters to the editor, demonstrating or simply by refusing to read the paper or to advertise in it. Disagreeable speech should be countered by opposing arguments. Censorship is not an acceptable response to the expression of contrary opinions, and especially not on a university campus. Sending the campus police to confiscate copies of the student newspaper is an overreaction and a victory for potential censors who seem to have intimidated the administration of UPEI.

UPEI has given the impression that vigorous debate is to be avoided whenever offence may be taken, or at the very least that such debate is to occur only on terms decided by the university administration. Surely, this is not the image of UPEI that you want to promote.

We call on you to reverse your decision and to let The Cadre do its job.

Sincerely,

Clive Seligman, president, Society for Academic Freedom and Scholarship, www.safs.ca

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Links: Censorship on the Island

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

The Official Word

The idea of corporations having 14th amendment rights as persons as been a topic of considerable discussion lately. Mainly by Naomi Klein and Avi Lewis on the north side of the border. I have heard on many occasions a company referred to as a virtual person but offices seem to be filling the role even more so, though not in the legal sense. More and more though I am seeing the office referred to the same even if the person filling it has changed.

Just a thought now.. What if the office was treated as a person legally. That way if the CEO screwed up in his role of CEO and this virtual persons freedoms were limited that would hurt the entire company. That would make the entire company do more to keep high level officials in line, or at least on the right side of the law. ..Perhaps more on that later.

Back on track.. Considering how we use offices to refer to virtual people, consider what it means to have the word 'official' become synonymous with 'valid'. This would suggest that flesh and blood people are now invalid.

And in day to day happenings it certainly feels that way. It is very hard to get anything diplomatic done if you are not working as the arm of something bigger and strictly organized. Though I can understand the stability of such a system it seems like a shame to relegate real people to second class status in a system created by us.

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Ancient Armory

Since I went to the art exhibit at Peake Street Studio [ ;) ] two weekends ago I have been rolling the question around in my head about what is the role, or perhaps responsibility (job?) of an artist. Then a thought struck me as I heard this line from Much Ado About Nothing:

Beatrice: I wonder that you will still be talking, Signior Benedick.

Nobody marks you.

Benedick: What, my dear Lady Disdain! are you yet living?

Isn't that a great line? Wouldn't you love to pull that one off at just the right moment? And it is my theory that it is to provide patrons with such tools is the job of the artist. Mind you, by tool I don't merely mean one line zingers but novel ways of expressing ourselves. Perhaps lines to say, perhaps hooks to hum or movements to duplicate. Essentially to create useful bits of culture to help the listener. In that respect the artist/patron relationship is not so different from any other relationship in that a good artist will empower the patron.

When an artist is seen in this light I think it puts a little bit of light on the issue of blaming artists for violence and the like in their patrons. If you want the patron to not express themselves specifically like that outlawing their art might help. But if they are expressing something negative it is likely going to be expressed negatively. If they are not to express anything at all then somebody has their work cut out for them.

Jewelry commercials, on the other hand, seem to fall into a different category. You know the ones that say stupid things like "Tell her you love her with a diamond." That is one way to do it. Actually, I'm not sure it is. I've given a few gifts like that and not once did it feel like I was saying anything close to 'I love you'. Do you know what I was thinking? 'I hope she likes it.' Because if she doesn't I just wasted a bunch of money. But expression has to mean something in both transmission and reception.

Perhaps the new tag line should be:

"Diamonds let 'Honey, you're worth this much money' get misinterpreted as 'I love you'. "


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Friday, February 17, 2006

Free Speech and Realpolitik

Can freedom of speech be quashed, not through barbarism, but through smart politics?

The cartoons that were published angered many people. Right or wrong it happened. And I won't pretend to know all the details of the fall out. But if you would, imagine for a moment that all protests against the cartoons were valid from the liberal democratic view of the world. Sit in's, for instance, in the liberal democratic tradition are valid along with boycotts and talking and writing about disapproval. And just such activities can put pressure, the very real economic pressure in the case of boycotts, on decision makers. These pressures, thus, may put such a persons in a position to chose a loyalty to economics or rights.

While the idealist may see this as a simple question it becomes very grey when we consider that much of the strength of the liberal democratic movement has come from the free market system. But these two ideas are inconsistent as demonstrated above. Economics says to suppress the cartoons so as to not offend those with money so that our institutions may persist and liberal democracy says to print them so that all who wish to can see them so that the ideals they try to spread may persist.

This is one inconsistency and there may very well be others. And there may be other systems that we will later find to be inconsistent. Two questions now come to mind: Can liberal democracy and free market economics live together? and Can they live apart?

To keep them together could be simple enough by deferring to a commonly respected superior body when such inconsistencies arise. Though both of the systems will have to take turns making sacrifices. Another option is to keep one of them in its pure form and let the other degrade in order to maintain the integrity of the first.

Which ever path is chosen if it is not done with proper respect for the potential of the division of the liberal democratic world we may be inviting a conqueror.

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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

How Many Letters?

I found this riddle on the net: How many letters does the answer to this question have?

It is kind of a strange question, isn't it? If you want a chance to solve it for yourself you should stop reading now!








----------------Spoiler Alert------------------ 3







----------------Spoiler Alert------------------ 2







----------------Spoiler Alert------------------ 1






----------------Spoiler Alert------------------ 0



I would say the cool thing about this question is that it supposes a test to see if it is right. The question starts with 'How many' so the answer must be a number (perhaps 18), or at least describe a value (like 'too many' or 'none'). So then the test is wether this description (assume a number also describes a value) matches up with the number of letters in that description. It is not so in English but there are likely languages where such a description does not exist. Also not in English but there are likely languages where there is more than one such description. In English there is exactly one.

We can test the answers proposed so far, 'too many', 'none' and 18.

'too many' -> 7 letters
'none' -> 4 letters
18 -> eighteen -> 8 letters

As we can see none of these descriptions match the number of letters it takes to write them and so none of them fit. But something strange happens if we recursively take the value of letters as a new description to be tested. We can even start with an answer that is completely absurd and it will take us to the correct one. Suppose we try to answer 'How many letters does the answer to this question have?' with something absurd like:

'The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.' -> 35 letters
thirty five -> 10 letters
ten -> 3 letters
three -> 5 letters
five -> 4 letters
four -> 4 letters! We got it.

'Four' is a description of a number that takes exactly that number of letters to write (in English). I have also proven to my satisfaction that all descriptions will settle on four when applied to this algorithm.

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UPDATE: 18 Feb 2006

On closer examination it is fairly simple to prove that all numbers must settle on four. The theoretical possibilities are limited to the numbers settling on a number other than 4(1), finding a loop(2), growing infinitely small(3), growing infinitely large(4), perhaps continuing in some other irrational way(5) or settling on 4(6).

Observation 1:
All numbers greater than 4 point to a number smaller than itself.

Observation 2:
All numbers less than 4 point to a number greater than itself.

Observation 3:
3 is the only number less than 4 that points to a number greater than 4, namely 5, which points to 4.

Observation 4:
Letter counts are positive integers.


Possibility (1) cannot happen because of observations 1 and 2.
Possibility (2) cannot happen because of observations 1, 2 and 3.
Possibility (3) cannot happen because of observation 4.
Possibility (4) cannot happen because of observation 1.
Possibility (5) cannot happen because of observations 1, 2, 3 and 4.
Possibility (6) is all that remains.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Fitness

Everything we call 'natural' has existed for generations and if it has not flourished it has at least maintained a steady state. In other words it has demonstrated Darwinian fitness. As environment change, though, the requirements for fitness change and some things that were once fit become unfit though no fault of their own. Similar to how all unfit things are unfit through no fault of their own.

Now consider that the environment is changing because of human activity. And by extension some things, animals and entire species, are becoming unfit because of us. But also some are becoming fit because of us. This, I would say, is that balance of nature.

While subsidizing a few species to give them a few more generations to try to adapt may give them more of a chance it seems kind of foolish to me to consider this preservation of nature. I want to describe this a preservation of a moment of nature. It even sounds absurd to me to try to preserve nature, as nature is the constant that chooses what is preserved.

While I may find opportunities in environmentalism I doubt I will make opportunites unless I can resolve issues like this with the movement.

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Friday, February 10, 2006

The Ultimatum

The administration for UPEI has given the Cadre an ultimatum to hand over the outstanding 1700 copies of the controversial paper distributed on Wednesday. This explains why Wade lobbied so hard to get the Student Union on his side. As to whether the papers are handed over now is a moot point.

What I think is very relevant is that when the Student Union did something the administration didn't agree with they had two choices. The administration could take responsibility for it, as they did, but they also could have distanced themselves from it. If Wade got any calls he could have said "The Student Union does its thing and you can take it up with them. Here is Ryan Gallants number." What does it say that say that Wade didn't do that? I think it says that the Student Union is essentially not a union of students but and extension of the administration. This obviously limits the power of the student in the Union and so in the policies of the University at large. I wonder if that could cause any problems.

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UPDATE: 10 Feb 2006 14:03

I just got an email from Ryan Gallant in response to this article. "It was actually the Student Union that has asked for the papers to be returned to the SU offices." While this may be true it comes off as a technicality if the SU called for the recall at the urging of the administration.

Ryan continued, "We also feel that a paper that purports to represent the student body should do just that, and the overwhelming response from students, including Cadre staff and Muslim students, is that the original decision to print these is in no way an accurate depiction of the attitudes of UPEI students."

Really? The Cadre staff? Then how did it get in there in the first place? If the Cadre wants to back peddle this one the rolling heads may just be starting. The Cadre may have to separate one of its member from the body to localize the decision to print the 'toons. I really hope it doesn't come to that. I think following the Danish example may be a good strategy: to apologize for the turmoil but not the spirit. I would be eternally grateful to anybody who is willing to show they are separable from the UPEI administration's ideology.

Ryan's email continued, "While Wade and I have had many discussions on this topic, our views, while not fundamentally in opposition, do have some small divergences. These actions were taken after careful consideration of the Student Union Executive, and were in no way influenced by the UPEI Administration (although they were happy to hear it I think)."

"[I]n no way"? Then what was the point of the meetings? If you want to express an opinion or want to show concern you have one meeting. Four meetings sounds like a consensus is trying to be reached. And the very fact that there has to be a consensus is what concerns me.

Wednesday, February 8, 2006

Wade MacLaughlan Takes Power Trip

What could possibly be going on behind the doors at UPEI that you and I cannot enter? The university president has just made another high profile decision to tell his underlings what not to do. And once again the prima facie details put me in the opposite corner.

Fight the good fight Ray Keating. If you need anything my email is on the right.

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Links: Student paper prints controversial cartoons

Google and China

I think I may have found something novel to say about this.

There are two points that I think are relevant to this issue.
1) Canada and the US do hundreds of millions of dollars in trade with China every year.
2) Governments have infrastructure built in to be responsive to the will of the people.

Yes, I am side stepping the issue of human rights. Honestly, I don't know much about it. What I do know is that those fighting the battle have a more vulnerable target than Google. That would be their government proxies.

That is to say that if Google in China is a problem it is indicative of a bigger problem that could be more effectively dealt with elsewhere. If you are of the mind that the government is not responsive to the will of the people and so it is not a more effective portal for activism in this respect, again that is indicative of a much bigger problem and I would start question the difference between your government and China's.

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Ideal forms

Ideas are most mysterious as they start to be understood. I just took in another lecture. This one was on curved space-time. I've been familiar with it for some time but now to hear it explained in a way that makes it accessible is wonderful.. and scary.

I'll try not to get in to details but the essence of curved space is that Euclid is wrong. Or rather that it can be demonstrated that Euclidean geometry (read: geometry) doesn't work. We don't yet have the tools to measure accurately enough to show we do not live in Euclidean space but I would be surprised if the deviations predicted by Einstein were not there when we have such tools.

I'm now wondering what would have happened had Euclid's detractors had access to such tools. See, Euclid's book, The Elements, was written to describe the space we live in. Now through some rational worm hole it has been taken to describe ideal space (though it still works for all practical applications [except programing GPS satellites in case you have the pleasure]). Had it been demonstrated that it didn't describe our space we would likely not have the elaborate theorems we have now for ideal space, and thus have little reference for this idea of curved space.

I'm drifting, aren't I? I guess the question I'm raising is about ideal forms. How many times in the past have we dismissed rationalized ideas because of discrepancies with practice. How many times will we do this again without taking the opportunity to find what the discrepancies can teach us about practice and the world we live in?

I think you get to ask questions like this when you have just accepted that you are traveling at the speed of light in the direction of time.

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Monday, February 6, 2006

Convention

The classics always get the juices flowing. I've just been listening to a reading of Machiavelli's The Prince. (I think I have 3 anthological copies in my library but don't seem to have the attention for reading.) Machiavelli writes there are principalities that are hereditary, where one family rules out of custom, and novel principalities where a family has come to power by another means. It is not my intention to defend or offend any of Machiavelli's ideas or writings, but this was merely the catalyst for the thought.

I assert that both types of principalities get their strength from custom. To make it more timely, and hopfully more profound, all power is rooted in convention. The difference in the two principalities is the 'level' of the customs being depended upon, how abstract the custom is.

To link this to darwinism, the fit survive and encourage convention that will hold their place in the palace. Monarchs sell their name, magnates entrench their industries. Doing this is a type of insurance on their power, or perhaps more aptly put: ransom. This way to upset their power would be to upset the way of life that has been built around them. These new conventions are more abstract, in that they are a synthesis of the old ones. Interestingly, these new conventions will determine the fitness of the coming generations.

But as we all know history is not only about building, there are many chapters about tearing stuff down. Some conventions slow rather than encourage effectiveness. Then those pockets from the old order that do not recognise it progress faster and crush the new order.

It has happened many times, with many different permutations of building and tearing down. But we are here. We are all part of something larger than ourselves. It seems like we are building faster than we are tearing down.

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Links: Project Gutenberg

Sunday, February 5, 2006

Stuff Part I

So stuff is actually happening (slowly). I am actually doing (a few) things and coming up with strange (and interesting?) ideas. But all of it is somehow unfit to publish. And that stuff has been taking away from the stuff I could publish. I would love to come up with some left field analysis about Google entering China but I just don't have it. It hasn't come. And I even tried (a little).

My regular readers (Hey Fred) may remember the post I did with the gridl0ck solutions on it (the zero is to keep it from showing in search engines). It is getting kinda crazy with the traffic. It is kinda what I hoped would happen only none of the visitors bother to check out anything else. Meh, I made a contribution to the web. Anybody want to put an add on that page? I might as well get something out of it.

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Wednesday, February 1, 2006

David Weale

I've never met David Weale but I have heard his name enough times in a favourable light to have a great respect for him. When I first heard about a professor offering a 70% mark if they agreed not to attend class I remember thinking how glad I was to have shaken myself free from UPEI. When I found out it was Weale I was doubly so. His involvement means it is not an acute problem. His name alone suggests to me the administration had feedback, time and oportunity to fix the problem and it still put professors in situations like the one Weale found himself in.

The university is an integral part of PEI so it is sad to see it in such a state, but to excuse mistakes is only encouragement for it to degrade further. Most who know me well have heard me rant about UPEI already. I completed two years of a bachelors degree. Each one in a discrete step. The first frustrated me so deeply I put the idea of further education on hold until introspection told me I was ready to try again. But even on my return I found that all effort given to UPEI felt like effort wasted. I had assumed I was some how incompatible with the idea of university rather than UPEI specifically, but now I have further reason to wonder.


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Links: The Calgary Sun - Unhappy lesson

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Just Attention

Craig Barnes on Clickstreams
Attention is NOT Click Streams

The idea of automating attention gathering and processing seems like a big deal. Those that learn to do it well could very well become powerful people, and a lot of work is going into streamlining this technology. I'm seeing, though, that most of the effort is being put into fine details and the big picture is being left to grow unmanaged. It is important to know what is attention, what it can and cannot/should and should not be used for, and how the data can be managed.

Many of these answers become apparent when we realize what we are doing. We are automating a process. Attention gathering and processing already happens, just not automatically. Have you ever spent time with someone and eventually you start to see what is important to them. You start to be able to predict what they will do in situations you have never seen them in. This is attention processing. Now train a machine to do what you already know how to do.

Attention is given to everything that is considered in an act or decision. Unfortunately, we don't yet have access to the mind's decision making processes so we have to make do with observing the act that results from the decision that results from the consideration. With enough observations from enough acts we can model the actor's priorities so that we may better serve them.

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Saturday, January 28, 2006

Why won't lefties play ball?

This is the story as I understand it:

- Liberals screw up
- Swing centers run to the right
- Swing lefties run to the center to fill the vacuum
- Hard core lefties are left to whine amongst themselves

I know you suffered some casualties but it is time to get down to business. In politics there are two types: rule makers and game players. Rule makers don't whine so that makes you a game player. Now there is a chronology to get from being a game player to becoming a rule maker. The necessary intermediate step is that you have to play the game, and play it well. So grab your socks and play ball.

Reservations about the system aside, I really don't want to hear any more about if Canada had proportional representation the Greens and NDP would have gotten such-and-such. We don't and they didn't. Move on. When you understand the game being played you can make judgements about its rules.

I've never met a lefty not afraid of organization. I know deference, structure and allegiance come easier to the right but they are implicit skills for the game. The thing is that the left can practice these without compromising its ideals. Well maybe not. Strict individualism may have to go.

The sponge was a Darwinistic cul de sac. To do the truely awesome things you need a central nervous system. Mind you to develope a responsible central nervous system we are going to have to solve some problems that haven't even been identified yet (and many that have).

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Friday, January 27, 2006

Thanks


  • Give thanks for sustenance.

  • Give thanks for requested deeds.

  • Give thanks for organizing efforts.

  • Give thanks for public appreciation.

  • Give thanks for private critique.

  • Give thanks for reminders to give thanks.

Rather than making resolutions sometimes I like to make tools, like lists or mnemonics, to make it easier to do what I think I should be doing. The above list reflects some of the thinking I have been doing lately about what I have been spending my attention on and what I should be spending my attention on. The things that made it on the list were things that happen frequently that could be handled in a variety of ways, but I wanted to make a bit of an extra effort to show appreciation.

I tried to leave the items ambiguous so that I could decide over time what they mean to me. This way I can edit the meaning of the list without editing the list itself. This is important with respect to the last item: Give thanks for reminders to give thanks. By putting in this item, making the list public and keeping it stable I'm experimenting with having the list come alive, so to speak.

The last item says that I will thank anybody who quotes an items from the list to me. This way it will be harder to forget about this peticular list. It also gives people a small incentive to read the list and see what it is I am trying to encourage. So making me more subject to its principles.



Categories:

Thursday, January 26, 2006

NBC Cancels 'West Wing' After 7 Seasons

NOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have been limiting myself to one article per day but this news requires a special lament. First John Spencer now this. Now where am I supposed to learn whatever the hell it was I learned watching that show. I guess now I will have that much more time to spend on local and domestic matters.

Watch out local and domestic matters. I'm coming.


Categories:

Artificial Accounting

Rebuttal to 0wning Your 0wn Data.
...if an organization sells your information (or allows it to be stolen!) that you should be compensated… preferably monetarily.
Naturally
Most systems naturally account for certain things. The current information markets, for example, account for information put into the system, the user's awareness of how this is used and others.

Artificially
To have the users be compensated monetarily would require an artificial accounting system. A system that tried to measure the inputs and outputs of the information markets and rebalance any injustices. (The graduated tax system is a good example) I wish to point out that these are rarely a satisfactory solution in themselves.

Firstly it takes extra attention to account artifically which may or may not be returned by encouraging a more effective natural system. For systems that we do not understand very well, such as information markets, many of the functions of the artificial accounting system must be arbitrary as we don't have to tools to derive effective functions. These arbitrary functions leave loop holes to be exploited by those who better understand the natural systems.

And so
The game begins. As the tax system is recalibrated every fiscal year to influance capital flows, your information too would still be at the mercy of those who understand it best. A monetary compensation system in place would put money in your pocket. But you trying to put money in your pocket gives the administrators another tool to control your information.


Categories: attention

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Strategic Departure

Usually it is the little things that tell me things are going to hell. Like I expect the entery level cashier not to care about my critique, but I look for any sign that they appreciate the proprietor might. I usually find none. Maybe they wouldn't care. I would have a problem with this too.


But today it was a little thing that made me smile. A car (Brown) wanted to turn left through a queue of cars (Black) as I (Grey) was approaching. I stopped with about 5 meters between me and the next car (Green) as to signal to Brown I would let her go. She got the idea. Then a surprise. I saw Green's reverse lights come on. Green backed up to let Brown make the left turn. It may seem small but I have never seen it happen before. I probably wouldn't have thought to do it.

It was a strategic depature from the norm for the good of the whole. I like to stress a healthy disrespect for convention... healthy disrespect. I do see the need for conventions. They make things predictable and offer order and structure where there would otherwise be none. But in situations like this where depature costs nothing and returns something it makes sense to deviate. At least one person agrees with me. Thanks Green.

And to the lady in the Explorer on Euston. Yeah, I had my signal on. You were right to think I was turning. I shouldn't have honked at you for cutting me off.

Categories:

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

The Stand

The night that man had been elected had been a night of horror for him, and all thinking men.

Stephen King
The Stand

Friday, January 20, 2006

White holes

I was excited when I first saw it. Yes, this is a screen shot from LIFE. What happens here is that the two masses on the left and right 'bounce' off of the square on either side and back into each other recursively. But each time they collide they produce a glider. Were I an astrophysicist it would be easy to compare this to a white hole. Creating something out of nothing seems like a big deal.

There is a great article on LIFE at Wikipedia.

Categories:

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Vertical Integration

Competition is a strange thing. It seems like two parties trying to undo what the other has done. And in essence that is what it is. It seems so wasteful, yet it is everywhere and it is encouraged. Why?

Something happens when the parties try to undo each other's work. That is that they try to find new ways to undo each other's work. They innovate. Like tectonic plates that push against each other so hard they raise each other up into a mountain range. Each layer of defense and offense creates something real out of the apparently destructive forces. These layers are responsible for capitalism, sport, democracy, I even suspect romance. The American system of checks and balances uses competition beautifully.

I have identified two things that can stop this destructively creative competition: apathy and cooperation. Apathy would be as if both tectonic plates stopped pushing and so they settle back down to sea level. There is no defense against this and it happens all the time to companies, leagues, nations and relationships. Usually described as 'fizzling out'.

Cooperation, on the other hand, we do have a defense against. Sort of. Back to the techtonic analogy, this would be if two plates met, maybe even influenced each other but never directly opposed the other. Like if they took turns pushing each other or pushed sideways rather than against each other. And so there is no destruction, hence no innovation. In the case of capitalism and democracy we try to use law to discourage cooperation. The thing is that when you are dealing with complex organizations like political parties and multi-national companies cooperation is a very hard thing to identify and define. So rather than deal directly with cooperation our laws try to regulate that which is needed for cooperation: communication.

It is illegal for opposing offices in a political campaign to coordinate schedules and strategies, and opposing companies cannot discuss pricing and promotions. But communication is a strange thing. Just as a person can 'make a statement without saying a word', organizations have ways of communicating information that simply cannot be regulated.

Competition can never be hardwired into any system. Assuming it stays energetic it takes innovation to recognize cooperation and discourage it for the sake of competition.


Categories:

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Gridlock solutions

Levels
01 02 03 04 05 06 07 08 09 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30
31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40

Be sure to check out complete solutions for Sola Rola.
How to use this page:
-Click on the solution you are working on.
-Click on Top link at the bottom of the solution.
-Use your browser back and forward arrows to toggle between the game and the solution. Or you can use the keyboard shortcut, alt + [left arrow] and alt + [right arrow].
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Level #1
8 moves

Get both right longs down

0 - top right
1 - both left up
3 - both bottoms left
5 - both rights down
7 - solve!
Top

Level #2
8 moves

0 - blue right
1 - left down
2 - top left
3 - shorts up
5 - all left
6 - right down
7 - solve!
Top

Level #3
14 moves

0 - all up
2 - all right
4 - all down
5 - all right
6 - all up
7 - all left
8 - all up
9 - all left
11 - all down
13 - solve!
Top


Level #4
9 moves

0 - all down
1 - all left
2 - all up
3 - all right
4 - all up
5 - all left
7 - all down
8 - solve!
Top




Level #5
9 moves

0 - all right
1 - one left up
2 - all left
5 - most down
8 - solve!
Top



Level #6
9 moves

0 - blue left
1 - short up
2 - bottom short right
3 - short up
4 - long left
5 - longs down
8 - solve!
Top


Level #7
13 moves

0 - all down
3 - top right
4 - mid up
5 - blue right
6 - left down
7 - blue left
8 - all down
9 - top left
10 - 2 up
12 - solve!
Top



Level #8
12 moves

0 - all left
2 - top 3 up
5 - blue right
6 - all up
7 - all left
10 - all down
11 - solve!
Top




Level #9
12 moves

0 - all right
1 - all up
2 - all left
3 - all down
4 - blue right
5 - all down
7 - all left
10 - one up
11 - solve!
Top



Level #10
15 moves

0 - all left
2 - all up
3 - blue and long right
5 - all down
6 - all right
8 - long up
9 - all left
11 - all up
12 - all left
13 - all down
14 - solve!
Top



Updated:
7:38 PM 07/10/2006

Level #11
25 moves

0 - 12 top short into right corner
13 - 17 left short up
18 - clean up

0 - all down
1 - blue left
2 - one up
3 - top long left
4 - short up 3 blocks
5 - longs right
7 - one down
8 - blue right
9 - long up
10 - one left
11 - long down
12 - short right
13 - one up
14 - one right
15 - one down
16 - blue left
17 - one up
18 - blue right
19 - one up
20 - all left
22 - all down
24 - solve!
Top



Level #12
17 moves

0 - 4 up short
5 - 9 down left short
10 - down right long

0 - top right
1 - one up
2 - one left
3 - one up
4 - all right
6 - one down
7 - blue right
8 - one down
9 - top left
10 - right up
11 - blue right
12 - long up
13 - longs left
15 - one down
16 - solve!
Top


Level #13
16 moves

0 - right long up
1 - shorts down
3 - one right
4 - blue left
5 - all up
7 - all left
10 - all down
12 - one right
13 - two up
15 - solve!
Top
Little Big Planet



Level #14
17 moves

0 - all down
2 - blue left
3 - one down
4 - one right
5 - one up
6 - blue right
7 - all up
9 - blue and other left
11 - one up
12 - one left
13 - 3 down
16 - solve!
Top



Level #15
23 moves

0 - bottoms right
2 - all down
4 - blue left
5 - all up
7 - bottom left
8 - all down
10 - on the top clear the middle
13 - all up
15 - blue right
16 - all up
18 - all left
20 - all down
22 - solve!
Top



Level #16
22 moves

0 - all right
1 - all down
4 - 2 tops left
6 - all down
7 - one top right
8 - long up
9 - all left
11 - short down
12 - all right
13 - all up
15 - short left
16 - all down
17 - blue right
18 - long up
19 - all left
20 - all down
21 - solve!
Top



Level #17
24 moves

0 - 10 left short down
11 - 21 long down


0 - one short left
1 - all up
4 - all right
6 - all down
7 - two shorts right
9 - all down
10 - shorts left
13 - long right
14 - all up
15 - all right
17 - all up
18 - all left
20 - all down
23 - solve!
Top




Level #18
25 moves

0 - 14 2 shorts in right corner
15 - 19 short up
20 - clean up

0 - all right
3 - all down
4 - blue left
5 - all down
6 - all right
9 - long up
10 - all left
11 - all down
12 - all right
14 - all up
15 - all right
16 - all down
17 - blue left
18 - all up
19 - all right
20 - all up
21 - longs left
23 - all down
24 - solve!
Top





Level #19
22 moves

0 - 12 left short to bottom
13 - 19 long left
20 - 22 clean up

0 - all up
1 - all left
3 - left down
4 - top left
5 - rights up
7 - long right
8 - all down
9 - all right
11 - all down
12 - all left
15 - all up
16 - all right
18 - all up
19 - long left
20 - one down
21 - solve!
Top




Level #20
10 moves

0 - short down
1 - short right
2 - two left shorts up
4 - two bottoms left
6 - three down
9 - solve!
Top




Level #21
21 moves


0 - all down
1 - all right
2 - blue left
3 - all down
4 - all right
6 - long up
7 - all left
8 - all down
9 - all right
10 - all up
11 - all right
12 - all down
13 - blue left
14 - all up
15 - all right
16 - all up
17 - all left
19 - all down
20 - solve!
Top





Level #22
26 moves

0 - 18 right short up
18 - lower long

0 - short right
1 - one short to top corner
2 - blue left
3 - all down
4 - blue right
5 - short down one block
6 - all left
7 - long up
8 - all left
9 - right short up
10 - long right
11 - bottom t shorts down
13 - all left
14 - bottom short right
15 - all down
16 - all left
17 - right short and long up
19 - all right
20 - all up
23 - long left
24 - long down
25 - solve!
Top




Level #23
31 moves (there's probably a better way)

0 - 25 move all shorts left
26 - clean up

0 - all right
1 - all down
3 - short left
4 - all up
6 - bottom long left
7 - all down
8 - short left
9 - all down
10 - all right
11 - one up
12 - blue left
13 - all down
14 - all left
15 - all up
16 - short right
17 - short up three blocks
18 - bottom long right
19 - bottom short down
20 - top short left
21 - long down
22 - long right
23 - all up
25 - all left
27 - three down
30 - solve!
Top




Level #24
26 moves

0 - two left shorts up
2 - all left
4 - all down
5 - all left
6 - right shorts up
8 - all right
10 - all down
11 - all right
13 - all down
15 - three top shorts left
18 - all up
19 - all right
21 - all up
23 - long left
24 - one short down
25 - solve!
Top



Level #25
27 moves

0 - 8 Lower left short
9 - 18 raise second left short
19 - 27 clean up

0 - top short left
1 - two up
3 - left long down
4 - blue left
5 - long right
6 - short down
7 - 3 shorts right one block
10 - long up
11 - long left
12 - short up
13 - long right
14 - long down
15 - three left shorts left
18 - one short to top
19 - two shorts, one long left
22 - long and right short down
24 - top short right
25 - top short up
26 - solve!
Top



Revised for clarity:
03 Jan 07


Level #26
33 moves
0 - 6 lower mid short
7 - 9 upper long left
10 - bottom short two blocks left

0 - right shorts up
2 - short right
3 - one left short down
4 - mid long left
5 - short down
6 - blue right
7 - short down
8 - long left
9 - long up
10 - mid long right
11 - one left short to bottom
12 - all left
14 - one short three blocks up
15 - all left
16 - one short to bottom
17 - all right
19 - one left short to top
20 - blue left
21 - one short up
22 - all left
24 - long and mid short down
26 - all right
27 - short to top
28 - blue right
29 - mid short down
30 - long left
31 - short up
32 - solve!
Top




Level #27
32 moves

0 - 8 left short down
9 - 20 shorts to right corner
21 - long to left

0 - long up
1 - short right
2 - long down
3 - shorts right
5 - one short up
6 - blue right
7 - short down
8 - blue left
9 - short down
10 - shorts left
12 - long and one mid short up
14 - short left
15 - all down
18 - shorts right
20 - long and one mid short up
22 - all right
24 - left short up
25 - all left
27 - short up one block
28 - long left
29 - longs down
31 - solve!
Top



Level #28
30 moves

0 - top short left

0 - long up
1 - short down
2 - shorts right
4 - all down
6 - long right
7 - long up
8 - short left
9 - short down
10 - short left
11 - long up
12 - long right
13 - long down
14 - short left
15 - all up
17 - short right
18 - all up
20 - one bottom short left
21 - long down
22 - long left
23 - short up
24 - blue right
25 - long up
26 - all left
28 - long down
29 - solve!
Top




Level #29
31 moves

0 - 14 raise left short
15 - 24 lower long
25 - clean up

0 - one right short up one block
1 - one right short right
2 - mid short up 3 blocks
3 - short left
4 - bottom right short up one block
5 - all right
8 - short down
9 - one short left
10 - short down
11 - all right
13 - left short up
14 - two left shorts left
16 - mid short up
17 - bottom long and one bottom short left
19 - one bottom short down
20 - one mid short right
21 - one mid/right short down
22 - short left
23 - long down
24 - long right
25 - one short up
26 - blue right
27 - one short down
28 - long left
29 - one short up
30 - solve!
Top



Level #30
32 moves

0 - 21 lower left short
22 - 31 lower right long

0 - all right
4 - long down
5 - blue left
6 - short down
7 - long left
8 - long up
9 - two right shorts right
11 - short down
12 - short left
13 - long down
14 - long right
15 - short up
16 - blue right
17 - left long up
18 - two left shorts left
20 - short down
21 - short right
22 - long down
23 - all left
25 - right long up
26 - one short right
27 - short up
28 - all left
30 - long down
31 - solve!
Top



Level #31
51 moves

get right short 2 blocks down with 3 bottom shorts on the left

0 - 11 raise left long
12 -

0 - short right
1 - short up
2 - blue left
3 - long up
4 - short right
5 - long down
6 - blue right
7 - short down
8 - all left
10 - long up
11 - top short left
12 - long and short down
14 - short left
15 - left long and short up
17 - short right
18 - long down
19 - long left
20 - right long up
21 - two bottom shorts right
23 - short down
24 - shorts right
26 - all up
28 - long left
29 - right short down
30 - short left
31 - right long down
32 - long right
33 - long up
34 - short left
35 - short up
36 - long right
37 - long down
38 - top short right
39 - short up
40 - blue left
41 - all up
43 - short left
44 - short and left long down
46 - blue right
47 - long up
48 - long left
49 - long down
50 - solve!
Top



Level #32
37 moves

clear the 3rd row

0 - short down
1 - short left
2 - long up
3 - one mid short right
4 - short up
5 - short right
6 - left short down
7 - mid short left
8 - long down
9 - one mid short down
10 - short left
11 - long down
12 - one right short right
13 - short up
14 - blue right
15 - long up
16 - short right
17 - short up
18 - short left
19 - long down
20 - short right
21 - short up
22 - blue left
23 - short down
24 - short left
25 - long up
26 - short right
27 - short and long up
29 - short left
30 - one short and long down
32 - short left
33 - long down
34 - one short right
35 - short up
36 - solve!
Top




Level #33 - Fixed. Thx Rachel
44 moves

0 - short left
1 - long up
2 - one short right
3 - short up
4 - long right
5 - short down
6 - shorts left
8 - short up
9 - long and 2 right shorts right
12 - long and short down
14 - short left
15 - short up
16 - blue right
17 - short down
18 - top short left
19 - long up
20 - short right
21 - short up
22 - short left
23 - long down
24 - blue left
25 - short down
26 - short right
27 - shorts up
29 - blue left
30 - all up
32 - bottom short left
33 - all down
35 - short left
36 - one right short up
37 - blue right
38 - long up
39 - long left
40 - one bottom short down
41 - short left
42 - long down
43 - solve!Top




Level #34
43 moves

0 - two shorts to lower left corner from right

0 - bottom short right
1 - one short down
2 - blue right
3 - left short down
4 - long left
5 - two top shorts and long up - one block each
8 - long right
9 - left short down
10 - blue left
11 - bottom short up
12 - short right
13 - left short down
14 - long left
15 - bottom short up
16 - top short left
17 - bottom short down
18 - long right 2 blocks
19 - all down
21 - long right
22 - right/top short up
23 - blue right
24 - short up
25 - 3 shorts left
28 - short down
29 - top long left
30 - long up
31 - bottom long right
32 - short down
33 - long left
34 - blue right
35 - left short down
36 - long left
37 - two mid shorts up - one block each
39 - short left
40 - short and long down
42 - solve!
Top




Level #35
43 moves

0 - 19 raise left short

0 - long down 1 block
1 - shorts right
3 - shorts up
5 - left short down
6 - long left
7 - short up
8 - shorts right
10 - one mid short down
11 - one mid short down one block
12 - short left
13 - long up
14 - long right
15 - long down
16 - blue right
17 - short up
18 - blue left
19 - long up
20 - long left
21 - long down
22 - short right
23 - shorts up
25 - shorts left
27 - two bottom shorts down
29 - short down one block
30 - short left
31 - long up
32 - long right
33 - long down
34 - short left
35 - short up
36 - blue right
37 - short down
38 - short left
39 - long up
40 - long left
41 - long down
42 - solve!
Top




Level #36
44 moves

both shorts to lower right corner
raise right short

0 - short down
1 - long right
2 - long down
3 - top long and short left
5 - long up
6 - all right
9 - short up
10 - long left
11 - long down
12 - top long and short right
14 - long up
15 - long left
16 - short up
17 - short right
18 - short down
19 - long right
20 - long down
21 - top long and short left
23 - long up
24 - long right
25 - shorts down
27 - all left two blocks
30 - long down
31 - top long and short right
33 - long up
34 - long left
35 - short up
36 - long right
37 - long down
38 - long left
39 - top short up
40 - bottom shorts left
42 - long down
43 - solve!
Top




Level #37
47 moves

2 shorts up

0 - short right
1 - long down
2 - blue left
3 - short down
4 - short left
5 - longs up
7 - long right
8 - short down
9 - two shorts right 1 block each
11 - long up
12 - short left
13 - short down
14 - long left
15 - middle long down
16 - two top shorts right
18 - long up
19 - long left
20 - short up
21 - long right
22 - long down
23 - top three shorts left
26 - long up
27 - long right
28 - short up
29 - short right
30 - long down
31 - blue left
32 - short up
33 - long left
34 - longs down
36 - one short right
37 - shorts up
39 - blue right
40 - long up
41 - shorts left
44 - longs down
46 - solve!
Top




Level #38
49 moves

0 - long left
1 - long up
2 - shorts right
4 - short down
5 - short right
6 - two left shorts up
8 - long left
9 - short down
10 - short left
11 - long down
12 - long right
13 - one short up
14 - blue right
15 - left short down
16 - blue left
17 - short down
18 - long left
19 - long up
20 - short right
21 - short up
22 - long right
23 - three left shorts down
26 - short left
27 - two top shorts up
29 - short left
30 - all down
33 - all right
35 - one left short up
36 - all right
38 - short up
39 - two left shorts left
41 - bottom short up
42 - buttom short and long left
44 - two shorts and long down
47 - solve!
Top



Level #39
50 moves

get all shorts up and left

0 - long up
1 - all right
3 - all down
5 - long left
6 - long up
7 - short right
8 - short down
9 - short left
10 - long down
11 - long right
12 - short up
13 - blue right
14 - short down one block
15 - long left one block
16 - long up
17 - shorts right
19 - shorts up
21 - shorts left
23 - long down
24 - long right
25 - short up
26 - blue left
27 - short down
28 - long left
29 - long up
30 - one short right
31 - right short up
32 - top short left one block
33 - long down
34 - long right
35 - shorts up
37 - shorts left
39 - shorts down
41 - long left
42 - long up
43 - short right
44 - short down
45 - short left
46 - long down
47 - long right
48 - short up
49 - solve!
Top




Level #40
51 moves

0 - long up
1 - short right
2 - short down
3 - long right
4 - short up
5 - short right
6 - all down
8 - short left
9 - top short up
10 - blue left
11 - shorts down
13 - short right
14 - top short up
15 - blue right
16 - all up
18 - short left
19 - short down
20 - all left
22 - long down
23 - short right
24 - short up
25 - all right
27 - short down
28 - blue left
29 - short down
30 - short left
31 - long up
32 - long right
33 - short up
34 - short right
35 - long down
36 - blue left
37 - top short down
38 - top short left
39 - three top shorts up
42 - blue right
43 - long up
44 - one bottom short left
45 - one bottom short down
46 - two bottom short and long left
49 - long down
50 - solve!
Top


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