Free will

Q: “Do we have free will?”

A: Yes but mostly no.

Free will is like a placebo. It’s not quite as real as we believe but it works most of the time.

We operate through conscious and subconscious thought, but mainly identify with the conscious ones. Our projected consciousness is the feedback report from our mental operations and we get it hundreds of milliseconds after the fact.
This report is very good at hiding its own inadequacies and strives for consistency and the avoidance of confusion and desintegration of the mind.

The feedback tends to be consistent and likes to give a lot of credit to our conscious operation by definition since this is the part made apparent to us and relevant for decisions.
The operations on these decisions is the result of relevant brain faculties stimulating and inhibiting each other in very complex ways until there is balance achieved and a resolution. This does not mean it is not deterministic.

I figure that anxiety involves unresolved tensions and having to exercise restraint on tendencies we have, whether consciously or subconsciously. That is probably why it is associated with indecisiveness.

Q: “Does this mean nothing matters, if non-determinism is at the core of things?”

A: Even if there is non-determinism fundamentally it is a mistake to draw any conclusions like that because our minds and bodies operate on a macro scale of the universe and you should always be careful applying something to another level of scale of the world.

Our macro scale emerges from the micro scale and we have different branches of hard science focusing on different levels of scale.

So in essence it does not change anything, and if anything it was a mistake to consider the Free Will matter such a loaded topic, as if it needs us to choose sides on the most philosophical matters of life.
Again and again we discover that the world doesn’t work that way and the mistakes are in the way we ask questions and make assumptions rather than the universe being weird, even if it is very complex on vitually all levels.

Q: “But am I free or am I not free?”

A: Yes.

Seriously though, freedom is a paradox. If we are given one form of freedom we are always forced to give up another form of it. As far as I can tell: in principe this becomes proportionately less of a problem the more power one has over a situation (of any scope).

The ideal of freedom comes from the need for one or more kinds of freedom which are desperately lacking. This does not mean it all works the same way with ideals of ultimate freedom which might reflect general despair.

Happy 2020 everyone!

Z (the other one)

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One of my short stories:

Fred had been a dictator for going on 7 years now, but if he thought about tomorrow being Valentine’s Day he started sweating bullets, and not the good kind.
He had to get a date pretty last minute or he would never hear the end of it from his father, who has his own private dictatorship.

Would his date truly love him for who he is deep inside, or just because of the threats of death against her family and everyone she ever spoke to?

Thus Fred decided to consult his horoscope but it in fact did not predict much good:

Genocide and more genocide…

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War is hell. ;

Hell is other people.


War is other people.

(Sherman / Sartre)

It is good to have an end to journey toward, but it is the journey that matters, in the end. ;

A journey is an hallucination.


It is good to have an end to hallucinate toward, but it is the hallucination that matters, in the end.

(Hemingway / de Selby)

Art is the lie that enables us to realize the truth. ; 

Fiction is the truth inside the lie.


Fiction is more true than art.

(Picasso / King)

Zwijgen is instemmen. ;

Spreken is zilver, maar zwijgen is goud.


Instemmen is goud.

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Theseus Paradox

The Theseus ship paradox is about whether an object which over time has all of its parts renewed is fundamentally still the same object. This would also apply to ourselves since our cells are also constantly being renewed, although it seems very unlikely that you would have absolutely none of the biochemical parts inside you that you had when you were born. This is not the point of the thought experiment anyway.

It would seem fair to me that if over time you replace parts of an object or yourself, you would also replace some of the letters in the name for the object. Shouldn’t your first name evolve along with you?

However as the case is so often in philosophy: whatever the fairest may be it still needs to be bureaucratically manageable.

I have replaced my last name all at once so I guess I am good to go for a couple more years.

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My funky valentine

Fred was ruim 7 jaar dictator maar als hij eraan dacht dat het morgen Valentijnsdag zou zijn brak hem aan alle kanten, inclusief links, het koude zweet uit.

Hij moest nu behoorlijk last minute een date zien te regelen, anders zou zijn vader – die ook dictator was – hem zeker nog een lange tijd belachelijk maken.

Zou zijn date wel écht van hem houden, om wie hij diep van binnen was, of alleen omdat haar familie met de dood was bedreigd?

Fred besloot daarop zijn horoscoop te raadplegen maar die voorspelde niet veel goeds. Genocide en nog eens genocide.

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De paus schrok wakker uit een gecensureerde seksdroom, sloeg met grof geweld op de snooze-knop, draaide zich nog een keer om en mompelde zachtjes in zichzelf “amen” terwijl het nummer ‘Papi Chulo’ uit Zijn wekkerradio verstomde in de broeierige Vaticaanslucht.

Toen hem voor de tweede keer een happy end ontzegd werd was het niet de wekkerradio maar een officiële pauselijke wekker die Hem wild wakker schudde. Hij riep het Latijns equivalent van “Wakker worden, Excellentie!”, ludiek ingeleid door de meest creatieve godslastering die de paus dat jaar had gehoord.

Wat! Wat was er dan wel zo belangrijk dat het niet tot na elven kon wachten?

“De Chinezen, Uwe Zaligheid!’, piepte de wekker,’…ze hebben met een natuurkundig experiment onomstotelijk bewezen dat dit universum in al zijn Euclidische dimensies net zo spontaan ontstaan is als alle anderen!”

De pauselijke ogen, net nog blooddoorlopen en bijna dichtgelijmd van het slaapzand werden nu groot als de telescoopschotels waarmee de Chinezen hun ontdekking hadden gedaan, en staarden langs de hijgende wekker de oneindigheid in.

“Allemachtig”, fluisterde de paus,’we zijn vrij en waren dat eigenlijk al de godganse tijd…’



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What came first, the chicken or the egg?

The egg actually, technically.

If you accept the premise of a checking, you accept that the chicken evolved from something else and if there even is a point during that process of evolution where you could define one specific creature as the first chicken ever…

… no matter when that point was exactly, before that particular first chicken ever there was an egg, but before that egg there was not a chicken.

So even though the real answer to the real question behind it is ‘something else’, technically the correct answer to the question is: the egg.

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Full Circle (the explanation behind my new prototype design)

The design for the prototype I recently finished that suspends my two computer monitors from the wall is based on a number of mathematical principles:

  1. A circle can be approached as a polygon approaches an infinite number of sides. This is shown in the following image:

    image 1: Polygons

    However, we can never actually reach it, since each side would need to have zero length, which would give us a dot.

  2. Binary numbers can code decimal numbers arithmetically. To do this, we compose a decimal number by powers of 2.
    Here is an example:

    image 2: Binary and Decimal numbers.

    However you count, you always start with 1. Then, just like a computer would count, in my mount design we go to 2 (2-sided – flat) flat screen monitors hanging by arms which are attached to a 4-sided (square) beam. Each side then bifurcates to create the vertices of an octagonal (8-sided) cross section. In the last piece, similar to what is sometimes seen in diamond cuts, the octagon flows into a 16-sided polygon (the hexadecagon).
    At this point, the polygons are almost being perceived as circles.

Finally, the name of the project “Chimæra” comes from the name of a Greek mythical creature that had 2 heads of different animals and a body of a third animal.

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This post is especially for you.

Isn’t it strange that at the same time psychological tests ask you if you think commercials, TV and news papers that you see send messages of personal relevance to you, while on the internet commercial ads that are presented to you are actually fine-tuned based on your browsing history.
Do you suppose we are all getting more schizophrenic by any common measure?

A moment to see the process

Last week I moved to Utrecht, where I installed the furniture I had made in preparation. I was like coming home, pairing up with my great friend The Rem. The great atmosphere helped inspire me to finish a track which has to be mastered better, project 3.19 can be checked in the music section.

In the section “design” some photographs will be placed of the objects I made, in the workshop I will demonstrate works in progress showing you the inviting locations to do it. I love working in the garden, and the weather is excellent for it. Noteworthy blueprints for what I make might be added too.

Right now attention for drawing is a little low, probably because I am focused on making music at the moment. If I am very lucky, The Rem will be cooperating with me to produce a video clip for the track I finish. We are looking into proper techniques for this as well as other ways to work together in a creative synergy.
I would love for him to provide speech material and maybe even field recordings to work with, my vision is to get a 45-60 minute live act completely down. Meanwhile his living quarters are transfor-med into a photo studio.

The lighting in my room is not fantastic because I live on the north side, but I hope to remedy that by making wall-illumination. Almost certainly fabric will be used again, but I want to get more playful with curves and intersecting forms. The photo “all I see is geometry” would indicate that my mind is only capable working with polygons. Yes, a nerd am I, but no I immediately reject that label and wish to keep tickling those boundaries. The subtitle of the site has to be honored after all!

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