Ooookay… Kinda way creepy. But it does remind me heavily of Hofstadter, esp. Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies (which will always, bizarrely, hold the distinction of being Amazon’s first book sale). It really wasn’t until reading Hofstadter that I finally got the old philosophical problem of “When is a chair, a chair”. Sometimes ‘hammer’ was used as the object. Considering that I was first introduced to this concept while sitting in on a graduate course on Heidegger, well, of course I was confused. It almost made sense, yet was rather tough to get at the basics of the question, the question looking so, erm, like duh! Hofstadter re-purposed the question as, “How do you get a computer to always recognize an ‘a’ or any other letter or symbol?” Or, more simply, “When is an ‘a’ an ‘a’?” Suddenly, the question makes perfect sense even while you’re getting the sense of the deep abyss of the original questions. I highly suspect that this problem is deeply related to the traveling salesman problem. Except that it is probably worse More general, at least.
Way cool and creepy. Instantly reminded me of Francis Bacon’s ‘Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion’, also a bit HR Giger.
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