29 December 2013

Hula Popper of Determinism

Hula Popper Lure
Jerking a hula popper atop sunken timber can be irresistible to bass. Deterministic mathematical models and spirograph plots are like crack cocaine for aesthetic logicians like me.

Unlike messier stochastic cousins, deterministic mathematics is compelling for its simplicity, orderliness, and predictability.

The Spirograph
Invented by Bruno Abakanowicz
between 1881 and 1900
Humans are curiously predisposed to prefer the quiescence of order over the cacophony of chaos.
Humans prefer the quiescence of order over the cacophony of chaos.
Big Bang Model
Perhaps our preference is genetically baked-in. Perhaps the act of imposing order allowed humans to become a dominant species.

Many scientists are drawn to the predictability of data-validated deterministic models over the specter and surprise of an unpredictable Black Swan.

Imposing order as a tool for proliferation might explain why most of us find order so comforting. The Big Bang Model posits that the universe originated from an extremely dense and hot state that exploded in a massive outward expansion that continues expanding to this day.

The human existential milieu is, and has always been:
integrated and orderly going to disintegrated and disorderly
Contemporary cosmologists hypothesize there might have been a previous yin to the entropic yang of the Big Bang. Order and disorder might be facets of the same coin.

Deterministic models often ignore the messy randomness most of us readily acknowledge, but the hula popper of determinism seems an essential lure. Determinism and prediction are at the heart of inquiry. However absurd the human quest, the deterministic line of inquiry keeps us chipping away at insurmountable unknowns with the crudest tools we have, mathematics and repeatability.

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