Tuesday, 19 June 2007

Understanding PageRank

It plays a central role in many of google's web search tools, based on a search algorithm and networking of thousands, probably unaware of, desktop PCs. It might even be mine for that matter, not that anybody should complain about it. It follows google's claimed philosophy that searches are designed to provide end-users with helpful and accurate results, which we can accept in general terms.
It makes use of web's vast link structure to determine the value of an individual webpage. A link from page A to page B is regarded as a vote for page B, by page A. That explains the large size of blog pages where the indicator bar in the scroll bar almost faints to obscurity. So there are a lot more links in a blog as the number of posts increase with time and the more posts the more the links. Moreover all, these little cute links from the bookmarking companies at the end of each post, would add to the number of links built over time. Finally that probably defines the effort put by each of the bloggers as painstakingly built bit by bit over time their number of links.
The next thing is about the weight attributed to the "votes" of some A pages to B pages. Namely, pages with a high pagerank, therefore "important" (the quotes are google's, as probably it feels guilty as their pledge about their loyalty to end-users is watered down a bit), weigh more heavily than other pages with lower rank. The whole thing boils down that the whole enterprise is primarily commercial. We need to make money, if we don't then the whole thing will not run at all. There won't be any web at all if the profits do not roll in, though we do need both, the money and the knowledge that WWW spreads around, and it is only hoped (as far as I could tell we can only hope) that people that run google and other services do not get greedy.
The next lines should be analysed carefully because, it determines how google suppose to serve end-users, the public, and understand their philosophy, namely the PageRank algorithm. It is claimed that they employ sophisticated text-matching techniques, (sophistry?) to find pages that are both important and relevant to your search. What can I say? Usually sophistry's attempts, are like philosophy, though not in substance but in form. The text-matching techniques most likely gives the impression the search for the end-user is relevant but whether is important or not, this is a matter for a wishing well. The end-user is the sole judge whether the search returned important results and the vague nature of criteria for relevancy, pose an enormous uncertainty value that it would be impossible for any algorithm to calculate therefore this allegation by google is an empty letter, devoid of meaning.
So the text-matching is based primarily upon the number of times a term appears on a page. So, what does that mean? A term in a page that is repeated, and it is the term that an end-user has put a query for? Can that repetition be mechanical, beyond the meaning conferred by the including passage? According to google. No. Google goes far beyond the number of times the term appears on a page. It examines dozens of aspects of the page's content (and the content of the pages linking to it) to determine if it's a good match for the query. Oh well, quite vague statement, which verges to the point to claim that this algorithm of theirs somehow has human qualities and can anticipate your mind.
The whole thing boils down that google's rise is a result of winning in a competition with strictly commercial criteria and in doing so it has neglected and continues to neglect individual enterprise an aspect which quickly has been taken up from services like technorati and the like. It is a matter of you can not have your eyes in too many pies.

Friday, 15 June 2007

Nature use chaos to get out of sticky points

Nature uses chaotic methods to deal with crises in any of its domains, in fact reality or anything yet unimagined realm of existence employ chaos to produce novel states upon which future evolutions can have a go. Each of us will benefit from knowledge of chaotic processes, and consciously or intuitively will facilitate the evolution of future states in almost everything that touches us.

Thursday, 14 June 2007

Observer influenced behaviour.

It concerns self-censorship, the plagiarism construct and the flow of ideas. I was thinking about it, this morning as I was trying to explain or justify, what I felt were the reasons behind the launch of the “Draft chaos” blog. I have put it down to the incessant procrastination in publishing posts I thought of, succumbing to a nagging self-censorship drive as I felt posts were falling short of ...standards... wanted to present …. Present what? And to who? (Well that is another matter, leave it for now.) To fulfill some standards? Standards for whom? The only standards I need to adhere to, are standards set by me, answer to me and me alone. I piece together ideas and I have to answer for them. I, only, know the contents of my mind and I am the only expert to confer judgment upon their validity. I, possess the failsafe mechanisms which will make sure that what I air, satisfies my common sense, and by that, general common sense at large.

Does that reek of Skinner and behaviourism? Is that selfish and egocentric? Oh the hell, the whole thing branches out for ever. It goes beyond of what I indented it to be when I started.

Measure Lyapunov exponents

28052007 MON

Note in 12052007 SAT 1105 brings the idea to use vs. in title for "Our linear vs. non-linear lives". Use the idea of dissipation of energy from the large scales down the small scales in James Gleick Chaos book...

0802 Chaos page 115. Becoming familiar with the concept of self-similarity. Early sense, an organising principle, limitations on the human experience of scale, how to imagine the very great and very small, the very fast with the very slow, but as extensions of the known? Human vision extended by telescopes and microscopes. New discoveries were realisations that change of scale brought new phenomena and new kinds of behaviour. This statement should go along in a discussion of hierarchical system organisation that each system within another has its own phenomena and behaviour which are revealed as we change scale but are self-similar as the organising principle.
0813 Continued: the process for particle physics has never ended. Accelerators as they increase in energy and speed extend science's field of view to tinier particles and briefer time scale and every extension bring new information.
0817 Continued: the parallel trend in science of reductionism. Break things apart and look at them one at a time. The power of self-similarity begins at much greater levels of complexity. It is a matter of looking at the whole. Avoid reducing the complexity when you examine a system, leave the complexity intact and apply self-similarity on the whole and not the parts.

0823 Always when we examine a factor be that a condition or a feature we should make certain we examine from the perspective of the part and its connections with the whole, leave its connections with the whole intact and examining applying self-similarity.
Transfer knowledge the information from other disciplines other systems and applies it to explain the phenomena from the known perspective.

0830 James Gleick page 117. Statements for art. How we perceive art.

0833 Gleick page 260. Struck gold, Shaw’s view that chaotic and near-chaotic systems bridged the gap between the macroscales and microscales. Chaos was the creation of information.
0844 Developing a basic argument to justify learning. Displaying the connections with chaos going along my personal experience, my
practice followed as a father and a powerful argument against the uneducated prevailing attitudes about the importance of school education. Quoting Packard, which I have to find his whereabouts, talking about thought processes, complicated systems that generate information. Information created and stored in our structure. In the development of one person's mind from childhood.

0854 a full circle and back to the task set for the day. Inserting a deeper concept in the chaosandorder project. I have to assimilate in the text.

0856 Lyapunov: page 253, a way of measuring the conflicting effects of stretching, contracting and folding in the phase space of an attractor. Finding regions that lead to stability and instability in the phase space of an attractor. Talking about phase space it
means the whole of the space a system unfolds its processes, the encompassing environment? Not the physical environment the process space that in human life systems is the ideas thoughts contained in cultures and its manifestations the events driven by culture. This is the phase space of the attractor and there the Lyapunov exponents are applied to provide a way of measuring the conflicting effects of stretching, contracting, and folding to determine what properties of a system would lead to stability or instability.

0916 Lyapunov continued: Exponents values above zero positive nearby points separate. Stretching. Instability? Values below zero negative nearby points converge. Contracting. Stability? A fixed-point attractor all Lyapunov exponents negative. Contraction. The direction of the pull inward towards the final steady state. Stability then. Negative values, contraction stability. Positive values, stretching, points diverge, instability. A strange attractor had to have at least one positive Lyapunov exponent.

0928 The Lyapunov idea developed in the most practical ways. Measure Lyapunov exponents and relate them to other important properties. How some systems can create disorder (instability) in one direction while remaining trim and methodical (stability) in another direction. Direction provided as a result of changing values in the variables defining features and conditions. Using Lyapunov analysis to determine contraction or stretching, convergence or divergence, stability or instability.

0937 Lyapunov exponents: (Oh where will I stop). Page 255. What happened to a tiny cluster of nearby points-representing initial conditions-on a strange attractor as the system evolved in time. Nearby points on a strange attractor? What is the significance of this? Has the strange attractor need to be defined first? Does it only apply to points on the strange attractor or the whole of its phase space? It should apply to all the points the main prerogative being to be nearby. Points anywhere in any given neighbourhood and applying Lyapunov analysis to determine whether they will diverge or converge. It is expected that if they are found outside the attractor they would certainly diverge. The most interesting objective to look for is when while on the attractor, therefore stable whether they will diverge or converge. We can accept for systems like life systems any given points to be lying on the strange attractor for that system and with that assumption to continue Lyapunov analysis to see whether the systems would lead to stability or instability.

0954 experiment described: The cluster began to spread out and loose focus, Lyapunov exponents positive separation, divergence. Instability. It turned into a dot then a blob. For certain kinds of attractors? What is that? The blob would quickly spread all over. Such attractors were efficient at mixing. Mixing? Bring notions of integration in a multicultural society, a social event where mixing between its guests is the goal of the host . In societies of nations, in world scene the mixing of cultures, there is quite a lot of mixing needed in the world. Has this anything to do with that? Attractors that are efficient mixers? Are attractors classified taken off the self for use in any occasion? A desired occasion? This kind of attractor leads to instability, separation divergence, however that effect is desirable in that particular case. Does that have significance in human life systems?

1007 the consequent effect of these tendencies is on the predictability factor. Divergence leads to unpredictability (spreading, positive), convergence to predictability (converging, negative). Predictability (representing order) is desired, unpredictability undesired (representing disorder). Attractors whether the spreading would only occur in one direction. Chaotic in one direction and orderly along another. The system had an orderly impulse and a disorderly together. And they were decoupling. Decoupling? One impulse led to unpredictability and the other kept time like a precise clock. Defined and measured. 1019 copy them in a notepad.

Visit our culture shop. Bargains galore

Pre-conceived ideas about the qualities, pre-fabricated notions of other cultures, for the members of other cultures. Off the self, over the counter, values offered, in the culture's one-shop for all merchandise. You have there, ready made, handy for you, for all occasions and all circumstances. Avoid these all-annoying tingling, fanciful thinking processes, time consuming, instead use easy to use solutions, ease your problems, guarantee success. Special discounts for our young clientèle. You can explain everything.

Each culture has its own all-in -one shop of off-the -self ideas about members of other cultures and each of us (has bought) must have experienced their effects.

In cultures that are comprised by a single predominant, this is not a problem. The problem arises when in a society there more than one influential cultures.
What then? Of course as each culture representative use its own culture corner shop (there would be problems) to purchase his off the shelf values, there would be a problems of various extent.
Do we need that? We need a culture shop, it gives continuity in our lives, it somehow blends with our disposition and may be, even our genetic make-up.

What we do not need are the off-the-self images about the members of other cultures. The stereotypes produced. It induces people to behave in ways alien to their true disposition.

Multicultural societies offer a great opportunity for a dominant culture to assimilate within it revised ideas in their stereotypes of members of other cultures as provided by the very same members of these cultures, malleated at the anvil of inter-cultural interactions and their significance is valuable to the creation of a harmonious world.

It is whenever you try to apply the model bought and it doesn't fit. What do you do then? You return the model to the shop and demand a refund? You demand another model that better deals with the situation encountered? Or ignore any discrepancies, dismiss them (as details) and continue to use the old ill-fitting model, ignoring any protests from the ill-fitted subject, and blaming that the subject portrayed malfunctions and not the model.
What is needed are initiatives as these, described by the aims in this KulturAXE website:
* Poverty alleviation by upgrading creative capacities and skills focusing on historically disadvantaged youth
* Promotion of a better understanding between South Africa and Europe as an initiative against stereotypes and prefabricated notions of cultural identity
* Detection and publicising creative potential
* Fostering of international exposure and mobility
* Building active intercultural networks between South Africa and Europe

Deconstruction: Supplement, originary lack, and invagination

The word supplement is taken from the philosopher Jean Jacques Rousseau, who defined it as a thing which is not essential, it is extra to another thing which is complete in itself. It is not directly connected with what I started this search for, but it has a potential for driving you into another post.
Another aspect that intrigued me though, is; whether it defines the form of my exposition. Am I using deconstruction myself? Without being aware of? The whole thing appears to me as a waste of time. Though you do not know. May be through their studies they manage to shed light into some concepts. It is their use of words for an even finer description. Discriminating even deeper between neighbouring concepts.

Still I have to think about the urgency of that current task. Abstract!!, for the sake of progress or continue rambling for the sake of rambling.

"an inessential extra added to something complete in itself." According to Derrida, Western thinking is characterized by the "logic of supplementation," which is actually two apparently contradictory ideas. From one perspective, a supplement serves to enhance the presence of something which is already complete and self-sufficient. Thus, writing is the supplement of speech, Eve was the supplement of Adam, and masturbation is the supplement of "natural sex".

But simultaneously, according to Derrida, the Western idea of the supplement (there is the idea of deconstruction, taking it a little bit further, not satisfied with what is said and the explanation offered, employ other meanings too, meanings derived from other contexts and applying them in the current context. So, therefore in this case, applies the idea from the thing the supplement exists for, meaning that a thing that has a need of a supplement can not be complete by itself. In order to be complete it requires the supplement too) has within it the idea that a thing that has a supplement cannot be truly "complete in itself." If it were complete without the supplement, it shouldn't need, or long-for, the supplement. The fact that a thing can be added-to to make it even more "present" or "whole" (would the use of the word “whole” be significant? Is it specific or non-specific? In the sense of the whole as more than the sum of its parts?) that means that there is a hole (which Derrida called an originary lack) and the supplement can fill that hole. The metaphorical opening of this "hole" Derrida called "invagination." From this perspective, the supplement does not enhance something's presence, but rather underscores its absence.

Thus, what really happens during supplementation is that something appears from one perspective to be whole, complete, and self-sufficient, with the supplement acting as an external appendage. However, from another perspective, the supplement also fills a hole within the interior of the original "something." Thus, the supplement represents an indeterminacy between externality and interiority.


Motorway traffic swarms.

"To stand back and look at the whole system, holistic approach, to understand how the system works, rather than break it into pieces" as I read it in Victor MacGill's Complexity Pages.

Let intuition take over, intelectualisation to its limits. (Are you sure that intuition is responsible here? Anyway, there it goes....)
"Chaos theory looks at how very simple things can generate very complex outcomes". The mention here of the workings of chaos does not discriminate on the simple things. It robs chaos of its process essence. And the simple things are the simple rules, or there is not a simple thing as such and the simplicity is derived by abstraction, and abstraction is a mental process we employ to make sense of the world around us. It is the right abstractions we should always use. By saying simple things, we employ abstraction too. But that abstraction is not helpful as it muddles up and leaves it unclear about what chaos is.

Motorway traffic swarms.

The example of the swarms, gives the essence of chaos as it traces its foundations. The rules, the simple rules which are: maintain a distance between itself and its neighbours and fly or swim in the average direction of its neighbours. From this alone the wonderful, swirling, complex patterns the birds or fish make are seen.
Look at that, like a spark traveling at lightning speed in my brain circuitry, elucidated, gave a clear projection, a clearer picture on an idea that was hovering around my mind for some time now. This involves motorway traffic and how to manage it. I always felt sorry to tens some times hundreds of stranded drivers in their cars in long queue of traffic especially during the morning and evening journeys back and forth to work.
I maintained that in order to avoid motorway pile-ups drivers had to keep a distance with the cars in front and rear, a distance which should be governed by braking speed and distance traveled once the brakes are applied. Safe braking distance in all and in essence. The term used in that website namely average speeds is what the acquired continuous speed might be too. So in order to have an acquired continuous speed of 40 miles/hour, the distance between any two cars in a column or lane it should be 36 metres or nine car lengths, for a 50 miles/hour 53 metres and at 60 miles/hour 73 metres at 70 miles/hour 96 metres. Though I fathomed the significance of a safe braking distance and somehow it was evident that by having an adequate distance between each traveling car, it would have allowed the traffic to pass through motorway traffic jams hotspots without braking speed maintaining an uninterrupted traffic flow without halting at any point through the hotspot. Even on motorway entry points where the rush traffic enters the motorway in droves. The distance kept by the drivers already in the motorway would have allowed incoming drivers to join the flow without braking speed by entering through the ample, wide windows in the traffic flow maintaining the momentum of the flow.
The number of cars allowed to join in, in a traffic flow window would be controlled by traffic lights, operating under swimming pool fun shoot rules, permitting a new batch of cars only if the cars in the batch before have cleared the entry way. Allowing only enough cars, according to the traffic flow from the junction (in cars/min or cars per minute) divided by an average car length to determine how many cars would be allowed in each traffic light interval. The number of cars allowed would be worked as minimum and maximum values, calculated from the parameters of cars/min traffic flow and car average length. Car average length will be calculated by taking an average from articulated lorries to motorbikes usage of the motorway traffic. Since it will take into account their contribution in the traffic it will be dynamically determined based on their traffic flow contribution. Let us work an example:
I have to think from the scratch. I should let some traffic expert to do that. Let us put down what are the parameters. There are two or three lanes traversing a motorway cross-section. So there is a set maximum of two or three cars traversing the cross-section in a given instance. Can this be set as the instantaneous speed? Would any notions of instantaneous speed be significant in these circumstances? What we are interested is cars per a unit of time. Do cars per unit of time resemble flow; let’s say of water, through a pipe’s cross-section? Water flow is designated as volume of water passing in a unit of time. Let us say 50 cm3/sec, which is 50cm3 of water passes through a cross-section in one second. Likewise in a motor way tract, replacing volume by number of cars in a unit of time, let that be minutes. Let us say 50 cars/min in blocks of two or three cars at any given instance. How can we calculate the number of cars passing through a cross-section assuming that we know the allocated speed, the car-to-car distance and the number of lanes? We should assume as well that traffic operates under saturated conditions. Let us say, maintaining a 40 miles/hour speed, then distance between cars should be 36 metres. We aspire to attain a quantity that has cars per unit of time units. The 36 metres car-to-car distance can be translated into car lengths. There are 9 car lengths for the 36 metres car-to-car distance. How can this be used to derive car/hour or car/min or cars/sec units? Traffic flow web search? Yes.

So if we speak about an average speed of 40 miles/hour traveling at a distance of 9 car lengths, let us say an average car length is 4 metres, then each car will occupy 9 + 1= 10 (itself) car lengths of the road or 40 metres. A distance of 40 metres would have one car, of 400 metres 10 cars, of 800 metres 20 cars and 1,000 metres 25 cars. So there will be 25 cars in one kilometre tract for each lane, times two, 50 cars for two lanes and times three, 75 cars for three lanes.

And each of these lanes flows at 40 miles/hour speed. How can this be used to find out the car flow from a given cross-section?

If it was 40 km/hour that means that in an hour that same column would extend for 40 kilometres it should have 40 times 75 equals 3000 cars (40X75= 3000) in one hour, and 3000 cars in 60 mins or 50 cars per minute, or 5 cars every 6 seconds or less than one car per second.

If it was 50 km/hour, a column extending for 50 kilometres it would include 50X75=3750 in one hour, 3750 in 60 mins or 62.5 cars per minute, or a slightly more than one car every second.

There are two issues to be considered. First the reaction rate of a driver, who is required to join the traffic without changing its average flow of cars, and second the length of the tract of the flow which will determine its success or not. For two lanes the cars accommodated 6,000 cars/hour and 9,000 cars/hour for the three lanes.

(Find out number of cars involved in a traffic jams. And the reaction time of a driver.)

There is the added bonus of how long it takes for some one to find its place in the traffic column without hindering the flow of the traffic. And another point which it should come out after I find the average reaction time, is the distance might be in need to increase to more than safe braking distance, to make it easier for the average driver to integrate in the flow of the traffic.

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Abstractions and their significance.

Abstractions assist in amassing knowledge, enabling the traversing of contexts that would have otherwise been impossible or downright difficult, as I sense. I realise that I rely on abstracting on information attained, to form a malleable piece of information which can be applied in novel contexts in an attempt to generate new information.

The process is intuitive and automatic. Automatic in the sense that it is not consciously constructed but instead it is self-constructed. It is the natural outcome of contemplating over a certain set of information produced by extensive investigation, evidence built by rigorous scientific methods.

The whole process it brings into my mind that article about the mechanism of intuition, I read in the New Scientist magazine a few years ago that so impressed me at the time. I have to dig that issue out and read it again.

As far as I can remember it mentioned about waves (brain waves!!) spreading indiscriminately in every direction, surpassing every nook and cranny, every hidden fold in our brains, back and forth several times, engaging therefore every thought, every bit of information stored in our brain, no matter how well hidden it might be, no matter how deep is buried in some remote crevice, it is bound to be resurrected in the successive wave sweeps and emerge in the surface of our consciousness plateau and surprise us.