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Filler post: Countdown to 10,000,000!

While we’re waiting for the news…

We’re about 11,000 hits away from 10,000,000, Conflucians!  We should have a party.  Got any ideas?  Post them below.  Mine include: a radio show, cocktail party, fundraiser thingy.

I heard a very interesting podcast from the BBC History magazine for the month of November.  The first part had to do with Lincoln and the issue of slavery that lead to the Civil War.  It will give you a new perspective on Republicans, Democrats, Whigs, and a couple of other parties that were viable at the time, as well as a different take on which party was the one supporting entrepreneurial expansion in the west.  The second part is about the origins of Mischief Night, which, by the way, roughly corresponds to The Rally to Restore Sanity/Fear that Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert are throwing on the National Mall on October 30, 2010.  Coincidence?  Hmmm, I wonder.  Are they planning to soap the windows at the White House and festoon the cherry trees on the mall?  Sounds like fun!  I want to be there.

In case you hadn’t heard, Benoit Mandelbrot, mathematician estraordinaire discoverer of Chaos theory, the Mandelbrot Set and Fractal fame, died yesterday of pancreatic cancer.  Think of him the next time you see a butterfly, a feather or pick up a cauliflower in your produce department.

Here’s a musical tribute to Mandelbrot courtesy of Jonathan Coulton.  Yep, that was one badass f^&(ing fractal.

And here’s a piece on Nassim Taleb, author of The Black Swan, and Benoit Mandelbrot on the financial crisis of 2008.  Short take: They were scared $@!^less.

27 Responses

  1. Nice day in Joisy.

    • Was in Joisy yesterday visiting my sister. Beautiful Bergen county; highest property taxes in the NE. It was a lovely day yesterday too. I love the fall. Hi everybody!!!

      P.S.I vote for the cocktail party, Is Rico still around?

      • You should live in the midwest. After a while, their “Joisy” will drive you jazey (crazy).

  2. The countdown must be really getting close! I’ll check as to not miss the moment.
    Obama deigns to share with the ants “the view from the Oval Office”

    • {{Snort!!}} If you want to hear how stupid elites sound, you should check out the Virtually Speaking podcast that Jay Ackroyd did with Will Bunch. Bunch is a clueless elite. Apparently, anyone who has a problem with Obama has latent r@cist attitudes. I gotta credit Ackroyd for trying to keep Bunch on topic. He seems like a genuinely nice guy. But Bunch comes off as a arrogant, idiotic, extremist of the “sports illustrated swimsuit model with PhD in architecture” class. It was so over the top that it passed from being stupid and annoying to hillariously self parodying.
      Check it out.
      Virtually Speaking with Jay Ackroyd and Will Bunch
      BTW, Jay, love your show but the music is a bit pretentious ala William Buckley.

  3. Party, party, party. I got nothing. But we should do something.

    I want to go the Stewart/Colbert rally too. That could be really fun.

  4. It’s a gorgeous day in Vir-giiin-iiii. Clear, warm, grass that needs mowed. Plants that need weeded. Oh why did I look outside…

  5. BTW: news scheduled for the top of the hour, for all you news hounds.

  6. Wow, 10mil – as a lurker I can hardly believe that I’ve been here that long – Time flies when you have a plethora of good posters, and very interesting commenters.

  7. And like magic, the news post is up. Aren’t magical automatic scheduling mechanisms a wonder.

  8. OT – yesterday afternoon I dvr’d a documentary on Hubert Humphrey – boy Nixon and Johnson were worse than I thought. – But then I was a naive new mommy then and not paying too much attention.

  9. Another hit –
    I’d like everybody to read about the woman, Alex Sink, running for governor here in Florida. The polls are virtually tied and after reading this I hope everyone will ask why. She’s running against a Republican that owned a healthcare services company that defrauded millions of dollars from Medicare. He’s a billionaire that pleaded the 5th amendment 75 times when his company was charged and found guilty of fraud. She’s is incredibly accomplished but not a great speaker. Where is the DNC? We should be floooded with commercials on her behalf by them. Her opponent is Republican Rick Scott who has no donations but can bankroll his entire campaign from ill-gotten profits.

  10. Oh, BTW – Economic Policy
    Assistant Secretary for Economic Policy Alan Krueger
    is another who’s opted to leave the sinking ship!

  11. I love the word “Fractal.” It seems like one of those words that probably sounds like what it is – whatever it is.

    • Fractal is dead simple mathematically. It’s just the sum of a function plus a constant. It goes in both directions. There are a ton of YouTube videos on the subject and it’s really not at all complicated, even if you don’t consider yourself very mathematically inclined.
      You can find fractals in nature everywhere and it kind of makes sense. The principle has multiple applications. Trees, feathers, cauliflower are all made up of fractals. Think of things that branch or patterns that go from
      Macro to micro. That’s fractal.

      • Thanks. They were explaining that on the BBC last night. I missed the first part. Very cool.

  12. One of my favorite thought leaders is Meg Wheatly, she has several books that are just wonderfully written and gets deep into how fractals are found everywhere and the uses of them.

    But…although I have a physicist son – I get lost in it all the time.

    I know it’s simple but maybe I’m simpler 😐

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