On Thursday, September 6, 2012 1:03:33 PM UTC-4, John Clark wrote:
>
> On Wed, Sep 5, 2012  Craig Weinberg <whats...@gmail.com <javascript:>>wrote:
>
> > Las Vegas has no function either. 
>
>
> Yes it does, Las Vegas functions to make money and give people pleasure, 
> the pyramids gave nobody pleasure at the time they were built except 
> perhaps for the Pharaoh; and they failed spectacularly in doing what they 
> were supposed to be doing, protecting his body and soul for eternity.     
>

But they succeeded (unintentionally or not) in giving hundreds of millions 
of people pleasure for the next 45 centuries. The pyramids made Egyptian 
civilization immortal. Do you know the names of the Indus Valley rulers? 
Sumerians? Maybe, but they don't have quite the ring of Tutankhamen, or 
Ramses II, eh? If consciousness really were information, then perhaps the 
pyramids made the pharaohs immortal after all.
 

>
> But Vegas has nothing to do with human folly?
>>
>
> No. 
>

Hahahahha. It's funny because I believe that you are serious.
 

>
> > Why don't you explain to me what General Relativity has to do with 
>> defining Cause and Effect?
>>
>
> General Relativity says that the cause of an effect cannot be located at a 
> distance in spacetime greater than a specific length, 
>

That doesn't explain or define what a cause or an effect is, it just notes 
a relation between them.
 

> Quantum Mechanics says that under certain conditions that may be untrue. 
> 350 year old philosophy books have nothing of value to say about this 
> controversy because the philosophers in question wouldn't even have a clue 
> about what we were talking about.
>

Old philosophy books read by new minds can give new minds new ideas. Had 
Leibniz not read the I Ching, we might not have binary math or computers 
today.
 

>
> > Right, but I was quoting the numbers in the non-Flynn column, where 
>> Leibniz does in fact get a 205.
>>
>
> That entire 1926 study of the IQ of historical figures was a bit of a 
> joke, it did highly questionable things like noting the profession of the 
> figure's father, estimating the average IQ of people in that profession and 
> assuming that the IQ is passed on to the son, and it was only concerned 
> with sons not daughters. 
>
> > I'm not saying IQ is a great measure of anything, only suggesting that 
>> it is possible that intelligence does not depend on how recent your pool of 
>> knowledge is. 
>>
>
> But how large your pool of knowledge is DOES depend on how recent it is, 
> and in matters of physics 350 year old philosophers didn't know jack shit.
>

Your view of how innovation and inspiration work is profoundly myopic. 
Philosophy continues to inspire people to apply old ideas in new ways, as 
does science rely upon rediscovery of discarded principles. You would have 
been among those who cheered the burning of books of classical knowledge 
because the Bible was the newer, better way of knowing everything.
 

>
> > By that logic, we should have 10 Shakespeare's writing today
>>
>
> Perhaps we do. If there were only one excellent playwright alive today 
> then he would be extraordinary, but if there were 10 then they'd just be OK.
>
> > A genius is someone who defines or redefines culture and thought.
>>
>
> If so then if you live in a culture that is dead wrong about nearly 
> everything its easier to be a genius than if you live in a culture that has 
> more things right. 
>

I do live in a culture that is dead wrong about nearly everything.
 

>
> > You sneer at what you have no familiarity with 
>>
>
> I sneer at ancestor worship; they were no smarter than we are and they 
> were far far more ignorant.  
>

I agree, but that still doesn't mean that we know everything that they knew 
or that we can't learn something from what they wrote.

Craig
 

>
>   John K Clark
>
>   
>
>

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