On Monday, March 25, 2013 5:45:30 AM UTC-4, Alberto G.Corona wrote:
> I don´t know what Math is. 
> If math is all that is free from contradictions and can be expressed using 
> the language of mathematics, then any description at any level can be math. 
> For example the set of positions and speeds of the particles of a piece of 
> dirt. 

The positions and speeds of the particles of a piece of dirt aren't math 
until, as you said, they are expressed without contradiction using the 
language of mathematics. That expression is not dirt, nor has dirt been 
transduced as math, the math is a logical analog of the sensory experience 
in which the dirt is defined for us visually and tangibly. The smell of 
dirt is not so easy to express as math.

> That description has nothing pure to stare at...
> I suspect that there must be more in the description to be intuitively 
> called mathematic:  short descriptions  with general properties applicable 
> to a wide set of different phenomena, whether the descriptions are in some 
> mathematical formalism or not.  I think that the concept of math can be 
> subsumed in this last, slightly wider, definition.

I would call that kind of intuition logic. I think if there is no 
mathematical formalism, no counting, then it is not math.

> That definition is directly related with kolmogorov complexity and 
> Solomonof inductive inference. ultimately the aestetic pleasure of Math 
> derives from the natural impulse to search for efficient algoritms useful 
> for induction, something that a living being do all the time at some basic 
> levels with prefixed algorithms, and humans do at the rational level with 
> their models.

I agree. I have always maintained that arithmetic is not fundamental but 
derives from a sensory-motive participation in the cognitive range. 

> I suspect that the pleasure that these short descriptions widely 
> applicable inspire in the one that aprehend them derives directly from 
> their value as tools to find regularities in the world so that it becomes 
> more predictable.

Yes, definitely. It's all about being lazy and automating conscious effort. 
Formulas and functions are to mechanize tedious experiences which are 
imposed upon us by the public facing conditions of our body.


> 2013/3/24 Craig Weinberg <whats...@gmail.com <javascript:>>
>> “The things that fascinate me the most about mathematics are logical 
>> thought and the great importance attached to the correctness of 
>> propositions. Every step made during calculations is conclusive and 
>> mathematicians don’t like to make false statements. This is the reason why 
>> people from this particular domain contemplate longer before they respond 
>> to questions. Recently I read a sentence in a book which summarizes all 
>> this fascinating stuff to me succinctly: ‘Mathematics is the purest form of 
>> thought.’” —  
>> Barbara Meier (via dauphinexvx <http://dauphinexvx.tumblr.com/>)
>> This is an interesting observation, and I don’t disagree that mathematics 
>> is the purest form of thought, but what is thought? While we are at it, 
>> what is a form?
>> In the first case, I have proposed that thought is meta-feeling. It is a 
>> kind of trick within the interplay of intention and feeling to establish a 
>> generalized neutral feeling which can be used like a variable in algebra. A 
>> feeling like “I am angry and sad because a tiger ate my kids, but relieved 
>> that it was only a dream” can sort of look at itself from a distance and 
>> strike all kinds of other thought-like sparks. We can feel fear that dream 
>> was a premonition. We can feel motivated to hunt tigers. These need not be 
>> thoughts, but emotive dispositions. They don’t entail any awareness about 
>> our state or our actions, only a desire for this or that response to a felt 
>> condition. 
>> The feeling need not be connected to a real event or a particular event, 
>> but as we go up the ladder of meta-abstraction, the absence of immersive 
>> personal feeling is replaced by formality and clarity. It is an echo of 
>> decoherence, as the living wave of direct feeling ‘collapses’ into a 
>> thermodynamically unambiguous state, the flow of participation is deferred 
>> into analytical hindsight and strategic foresight.
>> On some level, it as if we are picking up the stylus from the universal 
>> record and holding onto it while we deliberate our options. Thought is 
>> born, in my view, as this kind of deferred meta entanglement…a feeling that 
>> is whipped up into a frothy foam where it can be used to the sculpt air - 
>> turning absence into a virtual presence through surface tension alone. The 
>> thought bubble is hypothesis, and the ultimate thought bubble is 
>> Mathematics because it seeks only to distill itself into its own purest 
>> form. It is, however, still a form. There is still a thinker thinking the 
>> thoughts, and the thoughts are still feelings of a living person, but these 
>> facts are hidden from view within the mathematical context. The pretense is 
>> toward a universal objectivity.
>> Indeed, it is not incorrect to say that ‘mathematics is the language of 
>> the universe’, iff you define the universe to begin with as those forms 
>> which can be publicly observed. In my view then, it is really tautological 
>> to say that mathematics is the purest form of thought, since mathematics is 
>> only the thought of purest forms. What then, are forms?
>> There are many ways to approach such a general term as form, but I prefer 
>> the underlying sense which is shared with formality. A presented shape, 
>> yes, but more like the logical essence of a presented shape. It is a 
>> presentation of coherent qualities; stability and regularity, reducibility 
>> to simpler, universal sub-forms, etc. Mathematics explores this aspect of 
>> the universe while eschewing and denying all phenomena which seems exempt 
>> from form. All things spontaneous and erratic, non-reducible and 
>> proprietary are treated poorly. Emotions, free will, and the “I” to whom 
>> they belong are not merely pushed to the back of the bus, but they are 
>> pushed out the back door of the bus, to be paved over by the steam roller 
>> in hot pursuit.
>> I sympathize with people who are unable to conceive of a concretely real 
>> phenomenon which generates form intentionally rather than is defined by it, 
>> but it is harder to be sympathetic when this disability is compounded by 
>> the unwillingness to allow that it can be conceived. In my thousands of 
>> hours arguing with STEM-minded people online I have found an overwhelming 
>> bias against certain kinds of ideas and laughable acceptance of others. 
>> Ridiculously grand abstractions like MWI, or replacing every atom in a 
>> human brain roll off of the tongue easily, while ordinary terms like free 
>> will are brought under Torquemadan hyper-scrutiny. The double standard is 
>> tremendous, yet invisible to those who subscribe to it. Physics can be as 
>> counter-intuitive and unexplainable as it wants to be, but if you bring up 
>> intuition itself, then be prepared to hear a lot of ‘simply’ this and 
>> ‘merely’ that.
>> The good news though, is that through mathematical principles like 
>> symmetry, we can move beyond these blind alleys. By applying all of what we 
>> know about the public world, its forms and formulations in reverse we can 
>> find where the private world of physics begins - not with numbers, but with 
>> names; not with abstract thoughts but with sensory experience. To be a 
>> living participant in a meaningful universe is to eventually put the stylus 
>> down somewhere and let the music play.
>> The second post is shorter but it has pictures, so probably better to 
>> just link it: http://s33light.org/post/46154550763  It's about Tupper's 
>> Self-Referential Formula
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> -- 
> Alberto. 

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