Longfellow: A Psalm of Life

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A Psalm of Life

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

What the Heart of the Young Man Said to the Psalmist

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
“Life is but an empty dream!”
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
“Dust thou art, to dust returnest,”
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act to each to-morrow
Finds us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,–act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing
Learn to labor and to wait.

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Systema: Geodesates, Nodes and Links

“To every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.” — Isaac Newton

A predominant issue arising from my work is the discovery of the difference between a node and a link.  A node type represents a state type while a link type represents a transaction between state types.  However I am finding there are a limited number of node types (self-ordered states) and link types (self-ordered state actions).

In the diagram below, each polyhedron is a first frequency geodesate and has a unique polytrope/polytype combination.  A polytrope is the number of edges per polyhedron vertex.  A polytype is the number of polyhedron vertexes.  This is not the final version.  I am still working to purify my geodesate concept.

What I am revealing here is that each of the seven Node Types on the Left has only one Link Type on the right.  In the same way that an association is composed of a source node type and target node type, an association is composed of a source link type and target link type.

Here is an example of a homogenous Entity to Entity association:

Here is an example of a hetergeneous Entity to Positity association:

Having considered this it is now possible to conclude that there are a unique set of nodes each with a unique link which can be used to build homogeneous or heterogeneous associations.  In otherwords, each node type can perform only one action type.  It is the reaction type of the target node type that makes the action reaction combination unique in the system.

Let’s look at some examples of node type and link type associations:

  1. To identify a positity, positifies an identity.
  2. To objectify a projectity, projectifies an objectity.
  3. To chronify a chronity, chronifies a chronity.
  4. To projectify a quantity, quantifies the projectity.
  5. To qualify an identity, identifies a quality.

Fourty-nine possible type combinations exist.  I think there are even more types which I will explore with Archimedean Solids and higher frequency Geodesates in later posts.

Systema: Aristotle and the Six Unities

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Aristotle in his work Poetics defined what he termed, “the three unities”. The neoclassical form of these unities are defined as unity of action, unity of place and unity of time. Basically they were constraints placed on any dramatic work.

  1. The unity of action: a play should have one main action that it follows, with no or few subplots.
  2. The unity of place: a play should cover a single physical space and should not attempt to compress geography, nor should the stage represent more than one place.
  3. The unity of time: the action in a play should take place over no more than 24 hours.

These are excellent principles for the design of an interactive system. But considering the Six Hats, Six Coats concept I want to add three more unities:

  1. The unity of matter: a play should have only the props required by the actions.
  2. The unity of goal: a play should have only one moral.
  3. The unity of people: a play should have only the cast required to execute the actions.

So, there you have it. A modification of the neoclassical interpretation of Aristotle’s unities and another pillar in support of the Six Hats, Six Coats model.

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For further reading on using drama theory for interaction design, I suggest Brenda Laurel’s book Computers as Theatre.