Thinking out loud

Friday, March 25, 2005

Seeking Perfection

Perfection. Is it only a word; or is it worth striving for? It takes immense courage and patience to set oneself a goal and to make it there to perfection. There is perhaps no absolute 'perfect', but there surely is a personal measure for it.
Perfection is not a adjective one assigns to something after the fact, but a level of attainment that is decided beforehand. One strives to achieve that level. And it takes patience and a lot of self-belief.
The question, however, is whether there is a limit to the perfection one person can achieve. It is clear that one cannot master every sphere of human endeavour. But cannot one fix oneself a field, and work to perfection? Again, it takes a lot of courage to decide to dedicate oneself to a very focused area in life. It may be questioned if it even makes sense to do such a thing. Is it better to know a million things without being perfect at any? How broad should one's focus be?
Again, is it ok to excel at something academic while one's lifestyle is not balanced? Is it alright to excel at something while totally ignoring social norms of behavior? Is it perfection still if one fails ones duties as a child, student, parent or a friend to work towards a goal? Is it not possible to balance social and inner life while striving for perfection?
There are perhaps no right answers to these questions and different people will say different things. But what is more important? To be good be social definitions - maintaining cleanliness, normal behvaiour, and courtesy or to be a magician at something? Is it possible to attain perfection in both spheres? It is difficult to say the least - but probably attainable with super-human effort.
The only question is - is one motivated enough to put in that effort. One needs to ask oneself this single question.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005


Ask a scientist, and he will tell you why the sunflowers follow the sun. Perhaps someday science will explain everything...

...but please don't explain everything to me...let the romance of ignorance live on...

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Can I blog by email?

Blogger has this great feature where I can blog by sending it email.
If it works, it will be great. Just checking out if it works alright.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Schrodinger's poor cat...

This whole story about schrodinger's cat gives me the creeps...
either one believes that its only an analogy for the uncertainty principle and a very bad one at that or that there is something strange about the uncertainty principle itself.

Suppose we extend the usual experiment to be performed as follows...
The observer+box system is further enclosed in another box. Call the inside box B1 and the outside box B2. Also, outside B2 is another observer. Call the inside observer O1 and the outside observer O2.

Now, suppose that O1 open box B1 to find the cat dead. O2 is obviously unaware of what O1 observed. After a predetermined time, O2 opens the outer box B2 followed by the inner box B1. Is there any possibility of O2 finding the cat alive? Doesn't sound reasonable to expect this.

But now the trouble is this...for O2, the outcome was fixed the moment O1 found the cat dead. The wavefunction had already collapsed before O2 opened the box.

It can be claimed that the cat wavefunction collapsed because O1 observed it. But then, why is O1 privileged. Couldn't the box B1/B2 'observed' the cat? Or does the observer have to be alive? But then, what is the meaning of 'alive'?

Or perhaps we need to rething the meaning of conditional probabilities...and prior probabilities, posterior probabilities....etc etc.

But then again, the experiment could just be an extremely bad analogy for the real thing. However, is there a special status for the observer in quantum theory? Why is that?

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Hence I prove that God exists...

1+e^(iota*pi) = 0

5 fundamental quantities in mathematics, each created/discovered for different reasons, at different times in history, come together into this magnificently simple equation. Is that sheer chance or a conspiracy of the universe?

iota was invented to accomodate square roots of negative numbers
Pi was invented for geometrical purposes, though today it is defined analytically
e was probably invented for expressing logarithms
0 was invented by the Indians to ease numerical expression (?)
1 is fundamental anyway

How and why do they fall together so beautifully. Is it a sign of a divine presence, goading us to find it out ?

P.S. - I cannot claim to have discovered the importance of this equation. I remember somebody saying to me that Euler once used this to show that God exists. Googling didn't turn this up...but its pretty convincing anyway.

Why Blog?

I guess blogging (or any form of diary writing) starts in one of two situations. One, when one has so much time on his hands that he does not know what to do with it. And the other, when life is full of so much sentiment evoking activity that its difficult to contain it, and these sentiments find outlet into the written word. So let it be with me.
Everytime I've tried maintaining a diary, I've ended up tearing it up after a few days...wonder if this one will last..........
Life is hectic; how I have time for blogging, I don't know. I'm surprised, to say the least, that I'm actually doing it. Let's see if I can keep it up. :-\