net work / in me shed

Spewed from the brain of tom on

I went to the island, spent time with people I like, and watched bats and satellites and stars, stars, stars, which are countable only in the strictest technical sense. Then, in the middle of the night, I swallowed several high-degree polynomials, washed them down with tequila and a squeeze of Zorn’s Lemma, and dreamed.

In my dream I saw a spider the size of a dinner plate. I watched it doing its spider business: weaving, waiting, trapping and wrapping, devouring the silk of damaged sections and rebuilding, navigating its home-that-is-a-weapon, fearless of becoming trapped within its designs. Of what I saw beyond this, I cannot speak.

* * *

I’ve returned to my more ordinary home-with-laundry-and-dishes, located at the corner of Consensus and Reality, and re-engineered Punk Mathematics. I’ve simplified its structure, leaving investigations of Weird Economics and Datamancy for future projects. I’m also declaring a six-week internet and news moratorium. This will save time I would otherwise spend screaming, “This story has a number in it and so is vital to the cause! Bring me index cards and drugs!”

Before I conceal myself in the dark, securing a dragline and working my spinnerets, I give you a mission, should you choose to accept it. Go out onto the web or into the world and bring back your punk mathematical findings. Since people seem to understand the original video pretty well, I bet you already have an idea of what your own punk mathematics might be. Personally, I think a lot about:

  • Mathematical schooling, unschooling, and true things you don’t believe;
  • The hard numbers of poverty and collapsonomics;
  • Whether measurement leads to mechanization;
  • Algorithms for synergizing and monetizing human extinction;
  • Symmetry and yrtemmyS;
  • Games of coercion, games of freedom;
  • Networks of control and trust;
  • Systems and The System

Save your findings to Delicious, Flickr, or Pinboard.in and tag them “mathpunx”, or post them to Twitter with the hashtag “#mathpunx”. (If you use another social site, let me know in the comments.) Depending on how intelligent the archive drones* become, we’ll end up with a Chapter N that is somewhere between “Old Spice Math Guy” bits and “NLP Visualization Datamancy Hax0r”.

Good hunting. I’ll be in me shed.

* – Technical note: The stupid drone feeds results into Google Reader. The less stupid drone, when built, will end up in this currently blank Github repository. I’m writing it in my Newbie Ruby and coding help is always appreciated.