Archive for the ‘Meta’ Category


M = \begin{pmatrix} \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \\ \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}  \end{pmatrix}

B =\begin{pmatrix}  \begin{pmatrix} \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \\ \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}  \end{pmatrix} & \begin{pmatrix} \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \\ \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}  \end{pmatrix} \\ \begin{pmatrix} \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \\ \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}  \end{pmatrix} & \begin{pmatrix} \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \\ \begin{pmatrix} 0 & 0 \\ 0 & 0\end{pmatrix}& \begin{pmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1\end{pmatrix}  \end{pmatrix} \end{pmatrix}

Photo 127

flicker daadd file and flicker more generally.
one can “download” a photo to the download-directory
of one’s nameless mac-book homebox to get a draggable
icon… as i’ve done in causing the ditko art to
appear below. i haven’t used this flicker account
in years. but if i don’t look at my own memorabilia
from time to time, who will. much of the photography
for the “cooking show” seems to’ve been processed through


stop making sense

Photo on 8-22-14 at 4.40 PM

nothing is better than this… issit?

These are the fathers of Joseph the Carpenter:
Abraham, Isaac, and so on. Why bother?
None of it’s relevant genealogically
touching on Jesus if Joe’s not his father.

“Make straight the way for a voice in the wilderness!
Here comes The Branch! He’ll be King of the Jews!
I, John the Baptist, preach soteriology!
This is the end of the world! That’s good news!”

Verily, verily, Jesus of Nazareth
sat on a hill and he spoke from on high,
never once mentioning parthenogenisis,
reincarnation, or how he would die.

Andrew, Bartholomew, Matthew and Thaddeaus,
James son of Zebedee, John his dear brother,
Phillip and Thomas and James son of Alphaeus,
Simon called Peter, and Simon (the other)
followed him faithfully all over Galilee
hearing his parables all through the land.
“Why won’t he talk to us nonallegorically?
Sure, we can hear, but we don’t understand!”

Then in the city of Holy Jerusalem
Jesus’s enemy, Caiaphas, said
“How dare he speak to me authoritatively?
Infamy! Blasphemy! I want him dead!”

Treacherous wretchedness! Judas Iscariot
came to Gesthemane leading a mob;
tipped off the enemy osculatorily.
Jesus forgave him, of course; that’s his job.

Jesus was sentenced by Pliate the Governor;
tortured to death as he ranted and raved.
“God has forsaken me! Lama sabachthani!”
He is still with us. Repent and be saved.

in concerning that of which we cannot
(2009), i posted what appears
maybe to’ve been a coinage of my own:
“quality comes from caring;
caring comes from suffering.”.
of course, the thought behind this
aphorism, such as it is, isn’t *at
all* new: “you have to suffer for
your art”, “no pain, no gain”, so
on. anyhow, ctowwcs has
four interesting links (and no
duds or outright dead-ends).
also sue v..
(her book’s almost ready
for release; check it out.)

then there’s wet snotty bawling,
(2009) wherein i posted the lyrics
“like all blues songs/this song’s
about/how much it hurts/to play
this song” (again, original to me
as far as i can tell and a pretty
sweet little lyric if i were any
judge though of course it’s not
for me to say).

here’s a record i learned about from
lisa (in the early lisa *era*…
[1983?]): david bromberg’s
suffer to sing the blues (1971).

happy birthday, american
independence. it sez here ol’
(doubting) tom jefferson said
somewhere “if a nation expects to
be ignorant and free, in a state
of civilization, it expects what
never was and never will be”.
but then. england expects that
every man will do his duty. nations
expect impossible things routinely,
i suppose.

contents-page for
the “combinatorics” category of
_a_grader’s_notes_ (so far).
(in its natural order.)

a couple of good exercises
at random before breakfast
(april 17)
handwritten marginal translations:
english-to-code & code-to-english.

hey. this is fun and easy. (april 17)
the ross-collection copy of bogart
(1983) falls into my hands and i begin
to annotate it.

bogart so far (progress report at
(april 21) longish.
stirling numbers of the second kind.
(i’ve got it this time at last.)
the “onto arrow” —–>> and its ilk.

a thing unto itself (april 25)
more about KPB2.3
(= bogart \section 2.3).
* [ (k)_n counts one-to-one F^n’s]
* [ k^n (counts functions)]
* [ S(n,k)k! counts “onto”
functions N_n —->> N_k]
also… filling a much-needed gap…
N_k = {1, 2, … ,k}.
(why *is* there no standard symbol
for these amazingly-useful sets?)
{\Bbb N}_k := \{i\}_{i=1}^k

bogart so far, so far (april 26)
this very post, in some weird
go-to-hell-escher-and-back self-
reference-gone-mad. (what’s next,
two spocks at once?)

and that’s it. heck, if it’d been
a *big* project, i’d’ve never taken
it on. BIJAGDH. maybe some day…
maybe today!… i’ll say something
about the infuriating treatment of
“the basic counting functions” or
the amazing “poyla’s change-making
example”. not now.

after the con

07/14/13 more fun with yin and yang what was the question?

07/15/13 i got a dance… philosophy 101

07/16/13 behind the curtain dad was a magician

07/16/13 symbolism supression the horror…

07/21/13 BS commitments turn the other cheek

07/23/13 more BSC’s trust no one

07/25/13 none so blind shocking pathologies

07/26/13 treat both sides the same owen leaves the room

VME: Vlorbik on Math Ed

06/07/07 First Post hello, world
06/08/07 Why I Teach Such Good Classes (2003) short zine piece
06/12/07 Eliminating The Middle, Man “and” versus \cap
06/22/07 {X:X is full of baloney} abuse of notation
06/28/07 Contradictions of Ed Reform (1999) presented at joint meetings
06/28/07 Tutors and Teachers (1998) tale of two reforms

07/13/07 Tom Lehrer great songwriter
07/20/07 Con Report (2001) t-cubed calculator show

08/02/07 Learning Center easy money
08/08/07 Carnival of Mathematics XIV no “facts about 14”
08/15/07 The Pencil Rant why make things harder?
08/16/07 Jazz Math Ed go man go
08/23/07 Please Lie More Carefully impossible conditions

09/28/07 Maybe If I Ignore It… the statistics coup

10/11/07 ZBox Considered Harmful calculator (FTI)
10/12/07 Fisking Fennell NCTM
10/16/07 JAWOPPA just another way…
10/31/07 On Finally Teaching Calc II at long last

11/27/07 LEGO® Links very popular post

12/04/07 Open Letter To A Course Co-ordinator more calc ii stuff
12/06/07 I’ve Been Saying This For Years and i plan to go right on


02/01/08 Fractions and Student Incredulity trust no one
02/07/08 “Clearing Fractions” Clarified move your pencil
02/19/08 Radical Notations don’t overgeneralize

04/22/08 On Teaching Math Ed At Long Last boy it was great

06/05/08 Last Day Of Classes the beginning of the end?
06/06/08 188th Post one year old

07/16/08Section 1.1: Natural Numbers (1995) much my most-read post
07/17/08 Section 1.2: Modular Equivalences (1995) more from the same lecture notes

09/25/08 Wheee! back to work; textbook grumble

11/20/08 They Are Standing Still calculator code
11/24/08 Trust The Code. annuities

12/02/08 Fear And Trembling scheduling; politics
12/18/08 Why Live (x^4 + x^2 + 1) tricky factoring
12/24/08 Jeremiah 6:14 peace, peace


01/02/09 Introductory Remarks math 148 precalc
01/06/09 {(0,0),(0,1),(1,0),(1,1)} graph transformations
01/08/09 Capital-Script-D-of-f domain & range
01/13/09 What The Heck, Some Math piecewise functions
01/22/09 Big Day For Former Math Professor self-publishing
01/22/09 Message: I Care notation for transformations
01/23/09 It’s Not The Cheat, It’s The Futility needless case-divisions
01/27/09 Quadratic Formula Lore “complete the square” etcetera
01/28/09 Our Story So Far summarizing 148

02/09/09 Section 5.5: A Manifesto textbook rant
02/18/09 Bricks Without Straw compositions
02/20/09 And Into The Black rational functions
02/23/09 One Must Imagine Vlorbik Happy moebius transformations
02/24/09 I Quit: A Clarification mathblogging considered harmful

Math 148: Precalc too late to stop now
Community College Calculus (Spring ’09)


08/09/09 Open Letter At Random e-mail reprint
08/20/09 nobody writes to the kernel ramble of ex-math-teacher
08/20/09 this will all make sense later pedagogical content knowledge
08/23/09 the equality meaning of the equal sign try it you’ll like it
08/27/09 why we fight definitions are hard

09/21/09 look over there our medium is handwriting

11/09/09 notes for chapter zero blahblahs
11/12/09 classes, laws, and associations associativity
11/12/09 And Left Me In Reputeless Banishment “A” and “a”; page layout
11/13/09 testing testing boolean functions
11/14/09 in media’s rays ) cross-products
11/15/09 use the source luke permutations
11/16/09 never get outta the boat four 4’s
11/17/09 there is no frigate like a boat trees
11/18/09 the chinese room more permos

12/03/09 exercises at random S^ := S \cup {S}


01/27/10 Photo 96 MEdZ #0.1

05/07/10 pascal’s triangle (so-called) drawing
05/20/10 it said there’d be some thunder at the well i ching & binary
05/20/10 stop me if you’ve heard this more binary

11/23/10 trying again dammit P_2(Z_5)
11/23/10 perhaps *this* will refresh your memory P_2(Z_2)*
11/23/10 now here’s something you’ll *really* like more P_2(Z_2)
Math 148: Precalculus
(links to the following; i’ve lost control
of the actual code…)
As I Was Saying
The Natural Log: Eli Maor plugged.
In The Arena: “inflexible knowledge” at KTM & Lefty on Devlin.
exp & log
Monday Linkage: CO9′s on ANT.
Math Newsbite: “Square root day”.
Introduction to Logarithmic Functions
The Veil of Maya: simple, compound, & continuous interest.
When There Is No Peace: links.
Stretching A Point: doubling time etcetera.
Why Was I Not Informed?: MT@P, Spirograph.
Catherine Nails It: 21st C. skills.
Remarks Toward The Dissolution Of This Blog: review.
Forests And Trees: links.
Herculean Sense-Making: Garelick on discovery learning.
More Review
Formula Scratchpad
Last Post
Community College Calculus
alc I (151) and Calc III (153)

03/15/09 First Post and 1st busted link
03/31/09 153:Day One could’ve been worse

04/14/09 The Sky’s The Limit (At Infinity) students at the board
04/15/09 Aspects Of A Topic arclengths parametrically
04/16/09 They Put You On The Day Shift dijkstra. comments.
04/23/09 MT@P verse
04/25/09 The Best Lack All Conviction minty, lenard, & nowak
04/30/09 Down At The Bottom Of The Garden polars & parametrics

05/01/09 I Love The Smell Of Chalkdust In The Morning 153 homework
05/05/09 Parabolic Language hard “focus” problem
05/07/09 Buy Conditionally d/dx of a constant; epsilon-delta
05/19/09 Last Quarter’s Final 151 calc i (totally cool)
05/29/09 Triangles, Too, I Bet math circles; i quit

06/01/09 Caviar For The General binomial theorem
06/04/09 Last Year’s Final. Partly. Sort of. 153
06/05/09 More Of The Same 153 test
posted in ’09 (overlaps VME &c; then mostly OAV)

02 Introductory Remarks math 148 precalc
08 Capital-Script-D-Of-f notations (“domain” e.g.)
13 What The Heck, Some Math piecewise functions
22 Big Day For Former Math Professor uploaded lecture notes
27 Quadratic Formula Lore completely square

09 Section 5.5: A Manifesto rant on 148 book
18 Bricks Without Straw compositions
23 One Must Imagine Vlorbik Happy moebius transformations
24 I Quit: A Clarification blogging is too hard
26 Put Me Back In The Mud madness and poverty (intro)
28 Stay-At-Home Bookrun

13 The Triage Lecture life during wartime
17 A Decent Interval from short-lived 103 blog
18 The Crack-Up just like francis fitz
19 Targeted Tutoring extra paperwork
31 As Usual office politics

07 Morbid Navel-Gazing me me me
23 Won’t You Light Up And Sit For A Spell? verse (& more madness)

15 listening the most precious thing sociology
19 Last Quarter’s Final for calc I
21 First There Is A Mountain voluntary tryouts
28 nothing in his life became him i have to quit

01 I Quit academic lumpenprole RIP

04 All Uphill From Here driving test
09 Open Letter At Random introductory ramble
15 Assume A Can Opener If You Have It Not “acceptance” ramble
17 We Don’t Need No Stinking Badgers professional ethics
19 Lies Of The Program teach the whole student
23 the equality meaning of the equal sign (!)
27 concerning that of which we cannot speak analytic/romantic split

02 Letting I Dare Not Wait Upon I Would barre chords (guitar)
16 meanwhile in a distant comment thread drawing ramble
21 look over there no big deal philosophically

31 off in the distance walking & running

18 the chinese room yet another permutation ramble
22 It’s Been Too Long Since We Took The Time data-manipulation milestone
27 spam buy! buy! buy!

19 m’aidez union stuff
31 the man went to earth and looked again madeline made bread
posted in ’10

01/02/10 posted in ’09 partial contents
01/07/10 lovely dark and deep math ed zine debut
01/19/10 prehistory of MEdZ, part i really of the ten page news
01/27/10 Photo 96 Math Ed Zine #1

02/02/10 dekist’s hot shelves photo
02/07/10 January 2010 rambling self-annotation
02/08/10 the domestic arts in the age of digital distribution part i first of the DAADD photo series.
02/11/10 daadd part ii photo of madeline

03/04/10 more than 4K characters for sue v. math eddy ramble
03/05/10 threehundredsixtyfive days music update
03/09/10 yet another crosspost: from adj-l autobiographical snippet
03/11/10 like it’s twenty-eleven verse
03/25/10 why i don’t live at the p.o. anti-gov’t screed
03/27/10 i’m not there “reimagining economics” thread

04/04/10 a petri-disch community my life in schools
04/07/10 the swirling beachball of doom more “life in schools”
04/10/10 madeline’s front room (with guitarist) selfportrait
04/10/10 not for auction this machine kills fascists

05/07/10 pascal’s triangle (so-called) MEdZ #0.8 p.7
05/20/10 it said there’d be some thunder at the well i ching
05/20/10 stop me if you’ve heard this more pp. from #0.8

06/26/10 i’m not there imminent death of the net

09/24/10 university hall basement get back to work

11/06/10 midterm report discrete maths at big-state-u.
11/23/10 now here’s something … and more “lectures without words”.

12/01/10 community college calculus contents page for short-lived blog
12/29/10 more than 4K characters for k. nowak comment on “log laws” thread
the end of open a vein (2011–2012)
01/02/11 posted in 2010 partial contents

02/10/11 …in front of a mic… announcing my soundcloud page

03/09/11 we are not data metaphysical ramble

05/25/11 more four-string guitar liner notes

05/03/11 not dark yet wisdom & fame
06/12/11 how public like a frog link to video of me

07/05/11 poster by me still up today
07/27/11 miracles of the web r. shaffer painting spotted

08/15/11 go tell it on the ‘net broken security


01/06/12 quarterly report after long hiatus

04/03/12 many dollars short day of higher ed

06/24/12 de profundis listening as punishment

eliminating the middle, man (06/07)
was my third post (in vlorbik
on math ed
, as this site
was first known [to 01/10.
next was MathEdZineBlog, to 01/13;
then a grader’s notes]). my fourth post
was {X : X is full of baloney} (06/07).

these were published as a two-parter
with the (dull, dull) title textbooks
and notations
. the badness of
standard-text “set builder” notation
(the topic of the latter) had, for
quite a while, been a burning issue
for me; my then-recent discovery of the
attack on the “sign of intersection”
(the topic of the former) nudged me
into finally ranting that rant online.

so there’s some evidence that at least part
of why i *began* mathblogging when i did
was the need to announce that i’d been
newly horrified by new depths achieved
by the enemies of clarity in the long-
-established Notation Wars.

much more recently, i was horrified
anew: in the sloppily-ranted (and,
again, boringly-titled) midterm report
of 11/12, i announced my discovery
that The Enemy had come for the set-inclusion
symbol in my favorite intro-to-*real*-math
course (“linear algebra”).

the rest of the notations file is mostly
more about notations themselves than
Notation Wars. i haven’t been very good
about tagging my posts.

along the way, there was capital script-D of f,
(01/09) pointing out (among other things)
that remedial-algebra courses
daring even to *mention* “domains”
and “ranges” really (reallyreally)
ought to also introduce *symbols*
for these objects. (*easily written*
symbols, of course.)

somewhere i may even already have indicated
one high-hope-against-all-lack-of-hope: early
(and correct, and consistent) use of (the standard)
f: D \rightarrow C
notation (for a function f with domain
D and co-domain C). as scary as that
might be. (once the actual students
actually see how useful “careful use
of code” actually *is*, they’ll grab
it when they need it… more and more.
this is part of what’s called “getting

anyhow, i guess i’m just circling wagons
right in here. there’s some sign-of-equality
stuff by me in the blog next door, for instance.
and i’m feeling a need to have the evidence
(that Textbook Set Theory, long dying of
a usually-fatal illness, has been mortally
wounded in the bargain and is sinking fast)
much better organized (and, just maybe,
somewhat more level-headedly presented).

but not right away, not now.

(s. harris cartoon.)

i’m grading for the new (because semester-long)
linear algebra class at Big State U.. classes
started nine days ago so i was getting nervous.

meanwhile i’ve been posting very little.
i’ve got some ideas though, as usual.
we’ll see how it goes. anyhow, here i
am in the office for the first time in
months and it feels real good.

of course the computer is acting up.