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Postscript - shadows of echoes of memories of songs — LiveJournal
j4
j4
Postscript
Thesis: The more accurately we try to describe something, the more distorted and unrecognizable it becomes.

Discuss, with reference to post-impressionism, postmodernism, and/or postcodes.

Current Mood: dilettantalised

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Comments
From: fluffymormegil Date: April 28th, 2004 05:43 am (UTC) (Link)
"dilettantalised" - excellent word.
I tend to concur with the thesis; consider a glove described in structural terms without reference to anything else, for instance.
claerwen From: claerwen Date: April 28th, 2004 06:54 am (UTC) (Link)
No, postcodes are great!
rysmiel From: rysmiel Date: April 28th, 2004 07:45 am (UTC) (Link)
There are things I believe because they make sense, there are things I believe because they feel right, and there are things I choose to believe in order not to be dragged back into unhealthily depressing places; my position on your thesis is to reject it on those last grounds.
j4 From: j4 Date: April 28th, 2004 09:36 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm sorry if it does that to you. I think it's only depressing if taken to ridiculous extremes; I think there's a lot of grey area where a) we can achieve pretty accurate descriptions of things without just resorting to carrying things around with us and pointing at them, and b) we can have a lot of fun with the alienating effects of overdescription. (Otherwise I'd just be waving my nineteen hands in a state of agitated cubism, rather than having hopefully-meaningful conversations about stuff...)
juggzy From: juggzy Date: April 28th, 2004 11:29 am (UTC) (Link)
Also, I believe that your thesis is supported, to some extent, in the physical world. Firstly, if measurement is analogous to description, then the more tightly you try to pin down a measurement on one parameter, the more you make ambiguous the measurement on a paired parameter. Secondly, the more closely you look at a thing, to describe its constituent parts, the less recognizable the whole becomes. It is a glorious chaos that provides an eternity of contemplation.
rysmiel From: rysmiel Date: April 28th, 2004 12:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
Firstly, if measurement is analogous to description, then the more tightly you try to pin down a measurement on one parameter, the more you make ambiguous the measurement on a paired parameter.

Yeah, but this feature of the physical universe doesn't really do all that much at the scale for which human senses are optimised.
juggzy From: juggzy Date: April 28th, 2004 12:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
Agreed, but it shows that we are talking about something fundamental. The shapes of things at one scale are reflected in all scales, like sand dunes in a desert.


bjh21 From: bjh21 Date: April 28th, 2004 10:03 am (UTC) (Link)
I noticed something like this last night. The CSS2 spec is a lot more precise and detailed than CSS1, but it's almost impossible to work out how to actually do anything with it.
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