copy left rights

this edit: 25 Feb 2021, written: 31 Mar 2019.

For more than one reason what I publish here will have points of contact with what other people are writing to-day. —If my remarks do not bear a stamp which marks them as mine,— I do not wish to lay any further claim to them as my property. I make them public with doubtful feelings. It is not impossible that it should fall to the lot of this work, in its poverty and in the darkness of this time, to bring light into one brain or another —but, of course, it is not likely. I should not like my writing to spare other people the trouble of thinking. But, if possible, to stimulate someone to thoughts of his own. I should have liked to produce a good book. This has not come about, but the time is past in which I could improve it.
CAMBRIDGE, January 1945.
- from the preface to 'Philosophical Investigations', by Ludwig Wittgenstein

I want to echo these words. They are what I would like to say about my own. More importantly they ground me. They are humbling.

Of course I would like my work to be copied - to become viral. For this fantasy even to exist I need to ask you to include a link wherever you can, and in what you write, to whatever you found here of interest. The words of Wittgenstein are undoubtedly less well known than those of popular raps though; so there is little use for any I might write.

In the words of the song: 'There's nothing new under the sun, everything you think of has been done, all been done before your time, at sometime or another, by someone or his brother.' The song and its lyrics seem to have been lost. Most words have been. History only joins the dots it finds, and those it finds important.

The copyright notices here used to return a 404 error; that appealed to me but is not very helpful. Not having found an expression yet for my IP aspirations, in the meantime here are logos of some licenses that I like:

copyleft symbol

Designed for the licensing that has been developed from Richard Stallman's GNU Manifesto, 1985. - from Wikipedia



by the Pirate Party of Brazil, a play on the 'Portuguese words "copie" (meaning copy) and "co-pie" (meaning tweet together)'. - from Wikipedia

phoenix change


edited: 24 Jan 2022, written: 1 Jan 2022.
Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge? Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?

In a world humming with information, questions and answers are expected to be simple. Science answers simple questions, but those concerning wellbeing are complex, involving society as well as individuals. Semiosis is the bridge between the two. This site presents that elementary narrative.

My introduction to this was personal. Realizing I was lost, to find my way I looked for elementary facts. These I found reassuringly familiar. However, now they are assembled they surprise me. The content here seems reliable, but its form relies on my writing skill and remains a work in progress.

on writing

19 Jan 2022

Developing this site has been a challenge, but, in the words of Thomas Huxley, I hope that:

..the length of the period during which the subject, under its various aspects, has been present in my mind, may suffice to satisfy the Reader that, my conclusions, be they right or wrong, have not been formed hastily or enunciated crudely.

Yet while I began this project ten years ago, and the subject has been present in my mind for ten more before that, this is unlikely to suffice a modern reader. There is little time today for things that are not readily available.

From the preface: 'Advertisement to the Reader', by the English biologist and anthropologist Thomas Henry Huxley (known as "Darwin's Bulldog" for his defense of Charles Darwin's theory of evolution) in his 1863 book: 'Evidence as to Man's Place in Nature'.

From the pageant play: 'The Rock', by T. S. Eliot, 1934.

More: The Internet Archive: Prefatory Note to: "The Rock", T.S Eliot. Poetry Nook: Choruses from "The Rock" by T-S. Elliott Wikipedia: The_Rock (play)


Chaos refers to dynamic systems of apparently random states of disorder and irregularity that are actually governed by interconnectedness, underlying patterns and deterministic laws. The mathematical study of this is chaos theory.

scientific limitations

edited: 18 Jan 2022
As wellbeing is not available for scientific examination, science can say little about it. It cannot be isolated, and is itself a function of qualities that present the same problem, such as contentment and success. To us, wellbeing is priceless, self-evident and substantive. Engaging with it is unavoidable. Science however, like a computer, can only engage with things that are clearly defined. GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) is the result otherwise. If you want to know the relationship between energy (E) and matter (M), E=Mc2 is the answer, but engineers and politicians built the Bomb not science.
quoteleftMathematics is able to deal successfully only with the simplest of situations, more precisely, with a complex situation only to the extent that rare good fortune makes this complex situation hinge upon a few dominant simple factors. Beyond the well-traversed path, mathematics loses its bearings in a jungle of unnamed special functions and impenetrable combinatorial particularities. Thus, the mathematical technique can only reach far if it starts from a point close to the simple essentials of a problem which has simple essentials. That form of wisdom which is the opposite of single-mindedness, the ability to keep many threads in hand, to draw for an argument from many disparate sources, is quite foreign to mathematics.
Jacob Schwartz (Prof. of computer science, mathematician), in: "The Pernicious Influence of Mathematics on Science", 1992.
quoteleftIt may seem natural to think that, to understand a complex system, one must construct a model incorporating everything that one knows about the system. However sensible this procedure may seem, in biology it has repeatedly turned out to be a sterile exercise. There are two snags with it. The first is that one finishes up with a model so complicated that one cannot understand it - the point of a model is to simplify, not to confuse. The second is that if one constructs a sufficiently complex model one can make it do anything one likes by fiddling with the parameters - a model that can predict anything predicts nothing.
John Maynard Smith (theoretical evolutionary biologist, and geneticist) and Eors Szathmary (Prof. of theoretical evolutionary biology), (1999) The Origins of Life: From the Birth of Life to the Origin of Language..
No matter how transparent science is, it can always be misrepresented and then used to hide the crudest of intentions. It is abused by climate-change deniers to disguise their 'refutations' and, still, by Nazis to disguise their zenophobia. Science requires elementary reason to make sense. Reason need not then be abandoned when confronting its results. It is a choice how we behave, our ecosystem providintg countless examples of the variety of strategies that are viable.
A farmer, perplexed that his hens were not laying, called on a theoretical physicist for help. A few weeks after investigating the problem, the physicist returned with detailed calculations and announced: "I have the answer, and it holds for all spherical chicken in a vacuum."
after: A Spherical Cow. Science Magazine, 28 Dec 1973, Letter: 'Allocation of Natural Resources', letter from Stephen D. Stellman, Dept Biochem, Princeton.


comment: *

subject: *

name: *