Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Stumbled across this yesterday - - looks like a lot of interesting reading - mostly mathematics, and some physics.  I came across this via a trail that began at a classic - The Art of Unix Programming.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Indian Millenial Nationalism

Kush Arora has an essay from which I extract these lines: (emphasis added)
It has been argued by historians of the Marxist fold that Indian nationalism rests on, and is born out of the freedom struggle. I have deep reservations against this idea; however, it is very obvious that with the fading memory of colonialism, spoken if at all, in the dense post-colonial theory, no one on the younger side of 30 (60% of India) really cares if we were brought together through collectively opposing the Brits or through sitting round in a circle peeling potatoes in someone’s wedding. What is of relevance is that at the end of it all there has been cultivated a sense of the collective “Indian”.
The Indian Marxists in the US are busy trying to extirpate "India" from California's textbooks -- "“most references to India before 1947 should be changed to South Asia.”".  So inspiring to know that Columbus set out to find a sea route to the fabled South Asia,  and that the inhabitants of America that he and later voyagers found should have been called S. Asians.   It is unclear why America suffers these idiots;  but in India, they are fighting a rear-guard action (I hope) that will end with their permanent extinction from the world of ideas.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Secularism: A Primer for Pagans

Divya Jhingran, in her own way, says that secularism is a concept that is meaningful only within a Christian framework.

The innumerable rites of the pagans were so closely interwoven with every circumstance of business or pleasure, in public and in private life, that it seemed impossible to escape them, without, at the same time, renouncing all human commerce and entertainment. The Christians with pious horror found themselves avoiding the circus and the theatre.

Friday, April 08, 2016

The Invariant British Parliament

The House of Lords, today.
The White Man’s burden weighs so heavily in the House of Lords.
 The House of Commons, 1813.  (the burden hadn't yet been invented by Kipling).

Pretty much the same stuff, just now some Sepoys have been added to the mix that weren't there in 1813.

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

Cicero-Kickero Row

 I had first read about the "Cicero-Kickero" controversy in "Goodbye, Mr Chips!".  Lately, I found this in Volume VII of The Maine Journal of Education, 1873.
Chillocothe, Ohio, is divided on the momentous question whether Cicero shall be pronounced 'Kickero' or 'Sisero'.  A professor of the Kickero party has been dismissed from his position in the public schools, and the Kickeronians rally to his rescue and threaten to depose the school board.  The strife wages hotly, and the whole town shares the excitement.  Who talks about 'dead' classics?
There is a book with a free Kindle version on, "The Roman Pronunciation of Latin : Why we use it and how to use it", by Frances Ellen Lord, Professor of Latin in Wellesley College, 1894, which goes into this and many other things.

Unlike Latin, there is very little controversy about pronunciation in Sanskrit.  The language was engineered to be a means of loss-free communication across the ages.

Sunday, April 03, 2016

Amazing growth in Indian internet users

Statistics from
Notice the "Users 1 Year Change (%)" figure for India: 30.5%.

Caveat: I have no clue as to how the statistics were gathered. 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Turning meat-eaters into vegans

Rowan Jacobsen, author of "Fruitless Fall: The Collapse of the Honey Bee and the Coming Agricultural Crisis" has an article about plant-based replacements for meat, from which I quote this encouraging paragraph:

“Livestock is an outdated technology,” says Patrick Brown.

Considering the speed of change, the money and smarts being thrown at the problem, and the desperate need, it seems likely that sometime in the next decade, Beyond Meat or Impossible Foods or another rival will perfect vegetarian beef, chicken, and pork that is tastier, healthier, and cheaper than the fast-food versions of the real thing. It will be a textbook case of disruptive technology: overnight, meat will become the coal of 2025—dirty, uncompetitive, outcast. Our grandchildren will look back on our practice of using caged animals to assemble proteins with the same incredulousness that we apply to our ancestors’ habit of slaughtering whales to light their homes.