Anaïs Nin on Definition and Essence

In her diary, Anaïs Nin explores the difference between definition and essence… the way in which men (in particular Henry Miller) focus on definition and “truth” while women (in particular June Miller) are more engaged with essence and “being.”

Gödel, Incomplete

Here's a short movie by Martha Goddard. It features the logician Gödel... one of the most important mathematicians of the 20th century. The title: "Gödel, incomplete." Gödel's most famous results were his "incompleteness" theorems. These theorems demonstrated limits of formal systems. At the same time, Gödel himself, as a person, is incomplete, and defined not only by what he is, but by what he is not... by his empty spaces, his desires. Which include love.

A new approach to understanding why logic works and its applications

My PhD dissertation showed “why logic works,” gave a pattern for creating new techniques for building models of consequence, and developed ways of comparing the relative power of different modeling techniques. It showed how to understand logic as a tool we use for the construction of knowledge, and how design choices in the construction of the semantic model lead to different properties of the resulting system. A new set of techniques, ones more appropriate for modeling the meaning of object-oriented data, were created and analyzed.

My adviser Jon Barwise was a world-famous logician, a founder of the Center for the Study of Language and Information at Stanford, a professor of Mathematics, Philosophy, and Computer Science, and editor of the Handbook of Mathematical Logic. He wrote: “I think what you have done in your dissertation is quite interesting and makes a real contribution to the program of understanding what we mean by logical consequence.”

Yves Saint Laurent's Conception of Style

One aspect of what was special about Yves Saint Laurent was his attitude toward women. Pierre Berger was Saint Laurent’s business partner and lover throughout his adult life. Berger said in a letter "It has often been said that Chanel liberated women. That's true. Years later, Yves Saint Laurent would give them power... He strived socially, much more than others, for equality of the sexes and for the acknowledgment of the modern woman, not just as an object, but as someone who contributes to society and asserts her own confidence."

One of the ways Saint Laurent sought to give women power was in his approach to style. 

Picasso and the Medium of Desire

An interesting idea about language is that we are continually creating new media of representation, which permit new practices of use and new experiences.  In this piece, which I wrote some time ago, I explore the way in which Picasso and the Cubists created a new medium of expression.


"A dream of the future"

"Under the Loggia" by Peter Xiao.  

Let us embark together
on a voyage of learning, understanding and application
as we explore the nature and power of language
guided by intention
to shape ourselves and our world.