Thursday, February 17, 2005

Your Pal Mike Responds - Question #6

This is the sixth post in a series that started here. Questions are still being accepted, feel free to ask one yourself.

Question:How to correctly imagine inpredictable reality (the one we are in is predictable 'cause all our actions are predicted, to simplify, we have no choice but to walk our path), and is inpredictable reality better then the predictable one?

Relatively difficult question DeathBringer!

Your Pal Mike responds:

Unpredictable reality imagined:

"For want of a nail, the shoe was lost;
For want of a shoe, the horse was lost;
For want of a horse, the rider was lost;
For want of a rider, a message was lost;
For want of a message the battle was lost;
For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost!"

Or, if you prefer: The Butterfly Effect.

This describes a dynamic, non-linear system - a system of Chaos. Because there is no nail, a kingdom is lost. How is this predictive? It's not. Small variations in initial conditions result in large-scale changes on the back end. Let me use an example from my workday to illuminate this:

I get hungry each morning. This is predictable, and as such, I have a predictable way of asserting control over my hunger. Each morning, I trot down to the cafeteria and pluck a tasty bagel from the bagel bin. It is a linear equation if you will:

Hungry Mike + Bagel = Happy Mike

However, today as I 'solved for Happy Mike' an anomaly occurred. Let's call her w (for whale). Sally entered my equation of happiness right in front of the bagel bin. She was boxing me out and shoveling bagels into what appeared to be a picnic basket. Apparently, the stock boy at Piggly Wiggly forgot to stock the Froot Loops. Now I'm fairly certain that the stock boy, sitting on a wooden pallet chain smoking Camels, didn't foresee his slovenly actions resulting in my being bagel-less.

So my version of the above goes like this:

"For want of a break, the Foot Loops weren't stocked;
For want of the Froot Loops the breakfast was lost;
For want of the breakfast the bagel was lost;
For want of a bagel the rest of my day sucked."

In all, I prefer a predictable reality. No one should be without their morning bagel.


At 12:03 PM, Blogger Night said...

Thanks for answering!

Though i'd disagree with "Because there is no nail, a kingdom is lost. How is this predictive? It's not.", i'd say it's relatively inpredictive (if you want, inpredictive for people), 'cause you could take, let's say, a year or two of analyzing and you'd see that a rider/anyone_in_the_world couldn't act the other way and the nail was the cause of the lost. I won't argue with you on that, though.

Again, thanks for answering.

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