Wednesday, January 25, 2006

I. Teaching.
Can I just say I love it? My students for Calculus 1B are just great so far. I'm that goofy, eccentric GSI I always knew I'd be.

Today was their first quiz, and (by the few that I've looked at) they've done pretty well. Before it began, I told them to raise their right hands and take an oath:

"I, (state your name),
do solemnly swear,
not to try anything stupid like cheating.
I further acknowledge
that Patrick is not as dumb as he looks,
and that if I try anything stupid,
I'm just digging my own grave."

Laughs all around, but I had to make that point.

My quiz instructions began with "Don't panic."

II. There is no spoon.
For my two readers who might get this:

Have you heard of the logicians' proposed new axiom that the constructible universe is the entire universe (abbreviated V=L), e.g. that there is no such thing as a nonconstructible real number? What bothers me about this axiom is its incredible epistemological hubris, in dismissing the vast majority of everything from existence simply because our finite minds can't do very much.

I was arguing this with a logician today when I had a flash of synthetic intelligence. "V=L is taking the red pill!"

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