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Showing posts from November, 2012

The fate of the world

hangs in the balance again. And most of the world has no say in it.

The US elections matter to a lot more than just US citizens. While most of the US President's job would be to focus on ensuring the prosperity of the US, the rest of the world usually comes out as collateral damage. To a large extent, the severity of the efforts to tackle climate change, the probability of irresponsible wars and reckless financial disasters along with much else are all dependent on who wins these elections. The stakes could scarcely be higher.

And both the candidates - Obama and Romney - have their flaws. But Romney and the conservative right seem so regressive in most things that matter to the world, and indeed, even to much of the US, that it is a wonder that the race is still too close to call. But it would be foolish to discount the threat of this bunch getting to power again. Bush, for all his proven incompetence, got elected twice.

I hope Obama comes out on top, not because he'll get mo…

Mathemagic

A graphic novel on the philosophy of Mathematics? A friend pointed out the existence of this unlikely book, titled 'Logicomix', and I just had to get it.

Based on the life and work of Bertrand Russell, the book views his mathematical pursuits as arising from events in his personal life. Orphaned at an early age, Russell turned to mathematics to find answers to the reality of existence. He became obsessed with the methods of creating mathematical proofs using logic, but as his understanding grew, Russell eventually became dismayed at the realization that much of mathematics rested on unproven axioms. This began a lifelong quest for the logical foundations of mathematics that would be in harmony with reality.

The book introduces a number of other eminent mathematicians and philosophers that were contemporaries of Russell and gives a layman's perspective into their complex works. Here's a few of the star cast of geniuses:

Cantor: Invented Set Theory and spent decades crea…