Poetry Sunday

For contemplation on Poetry Sunday today, I offer an eclectic piece I ran across at Scientific American back in 2011, Poetic masterpiece of Claude Shannon, father of information theory, published for the first timeClaude Shannon was an interesting individual to say the least, as to be expected given his contributions to information theory. As someone obsessed with entropy from a young age, Shannon has been a giant in my life.  Make sure to read the footnotes, they may be better than the poem itself. I still get a chuckle out of “Boggle even Sagan’s mind”. I once submitted Shannon, Tolkien, and fictional Data, I suppose we could borrow Watson now, for a holodeck poker session wish list, a  Cryptologists night out.  As an absent minded philosopher I like looking for those ideas hidden in plain sight, you might say given definition from shadow more than light. The problem with that though once you start playing in the sandbox of information theory, is it is such a bright light brought to bear, illuminates all data by calculating ‘shadows’ you might say, and thus outlines idea containers, but not necessarily the ideas within.  Makes it hard to project onto those cave walls if the spotlight eliminates all the shadows in the process.  Still, some days you need a torch that illuminates even the darkest corners of our caves.  Another tool for the box, in any case.  Have a great day everyone!

Theme Music: Andrew Bird – Things Behind the Barn


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