Dangerous Knowledge

I have watched the 2007 documentary Dangerous Knowledge by David Malone several times portraying the work of mathematicians Georg Cantor, Ludwig Boltzmann, Kurt Gödel and Alan Turing. I am reminded of my 7th-grade class in algebra: 2x + 6 = 36, solve for x. At UND I took algebra again and got an A thanks to FCHS’s advanced math program. In my graduate classes, I took finite math/calculus and then a class in economic history, where I proposed to the professor to write my course paper on Karl Marx’s ‘mathematical transformation problem’. He said it was too complex for a management major and so I selected a mundane subject – England’s 1800 corn laws. This blog presents four mathematicians and how they struggled to mathematically map the university – they were “alone with the alone” and this drove some insane and to suicide. We expect not to reach that tipping point.

Alone with the Alone

Beneath the surface of the world, are the rules of science. But beneath them, there is a far deeper set of rules – a matrix of pure mathematics which explains the nature of the rules of science and how it is the way we can understand them in the first place. In this one-off documentary, David Malone looks at four brilliant mathematicians – Georg Cantor, Ludwig Boltzmann, Kurt Gödel and Alan Turing – whose genius has profoundly affected us, but which tragically drove them insane.

The film begins with Georg Cantor, the great mathematician whose work proved to be the foundation for much of the 20th-century mathematics. He believed he was God’s messenger and was eventually driven insane trying to prove his theories of infinity.

Here’s the summary from the BBC website:

In this one-off documentary, David Malone looks at four brilliant mathematicians – Georg Cantor, Ludwig Boltzmann, Kurt Gödel and Alan Turing – whose genius has profoundly affected us, but which tragically drove them insane and eventually led to them all committing suicide.

The film begins with Georg Cantor, the great mathematician whose work proved to be the foundation for much of the 20th-century mathematics. He believed he was God’s messenger and was eventually driven insane trying to prove his theories of infinity.

Ludwig Boltzmann’s struggle to prove the existence of atoms and probability eventually drove him to suicide. Kurt Gödel, the introverted confidant of Einstein, proved that there would always be problems which were outside human logic. His life ended in a sanatorium where he starved himself to death.

Finally, Alan Turing, the great Bletchley Park code breaker, father of computer science and homosexual, died trying to prove that some things are fundamentally unprovable.

The film also talks to the latest in the line of thinkers who have continued to pursue the question of whether there are things that mathematics and the human mind cannot know. They include Greg Chaitin, mathematician at the IBM TJ Watson Research Center, New York, and Roger Penrose.

Dangerous Knowledge tackles some of the profound questions about the true nature of reality that mathematical thinkers are still trying to answer today.

Dangerous Knowledge (1/5)

Dangerous Knowledge (2/5)

Dangerous Knowledge (3/5)

 

Dangerous Knowledge (4/5)

Dangerous Knowledge (5/5)

The Mathematics of Chaos Documentary|

As we watch this Malone’s ‘math of chaos documentary’, what is he saying about our current ‘chaotic world’, what is creating our modern sense of anxiety? We are anxious, are we not? When will our World reach another tipping point? When will our current order tip into chaos? Ford’s assembly line 1900 and then the computer 1939 imposed on us thinking that we could control the future Edward Norton Lorenz model of climate change says that a tiny change at the beginning of one’s model creates major changes when carried forward. A small error makes no difference is wrong and is known as the butterfly effect, dz/dt=xy-z. Where is the root that is giving us the chaos of Trump? This has to be unpacked psycho-analytically and as Malone’s series has been doing is presenting the mathematics for our study of global corporate capitalism.

Ft=dxxtf’x – [ ] [ ]
rmx(r) < 0

With the nuclear age and the computer, we thought we could control the economy, In 1962 Lorens built a model on the climate – tiny numbers at the beginning created major changes; “a small error makes no difference is wrong – the butterfly effect, dz/dt=xy-z.” There is something about Man in wanting to trace his develop backward, to his beginning that will never end. However, traveling this journey is dangerous but we must stay on the road!~~ It is mentioned in these videos that understanding the depth psychology is important! This topic will continue on as its history can be read in these other posts.

Edward Norton Lorenz 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_Norton_Lorenz

Chaos Theory / Butterfly Effect
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HfD1OsP-Bv8

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