Icosian Reflections

The crisis through which we are passing

is only part of our day’s work.

IN  WHICH Ross Rheingans-Yoo—a sometime economist, trader, artist, expat, poet, EA, and programmer—writes on things of int­erest.

Reading Feed (last update: May 17)

A collection of things that I was glad I read. Views expressed by linked authors are chosen because I think they’re interesting, not because I think they’re correct, unless indicated otherwise.


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Blog: Don't Worry About the Vase | Formula for Dying Babies


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Blog: Marginal Revolution | Ask and they shall deliver — "Companies in the [EU] would be allowed to build wind and solar projects without the need for an environmental impact assessment, according to draft proposals obtained by the Financial Times that call for the fast-track permitting of renewable projects in designated “go-to” areas."

Comic: xkcd | Health Data

Blog: Marginal Revolution | Infant Formula, Price Controls, and the Misallocation of Resources

Blog: In the Pipeline | Personal Paxlovid Update


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Blog: Marginal Revolution | I favor bird consequentialism — Environmental conservation opposes radical climate

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A Meditation on π

note: This is not a volley in the \(\pi-\tau\) debate, of which Vi Hart is undisputed monarch -- and right, as well -- as far as I'm concerned.


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A few number-theoretic \(\pi\) facts:

  • \(\pi\) is provably transcendental, thus also irrational.
  • \(\pi\) is suspected, but not known, to be normal, a generalization of transcendence.
  • \(\pi\), provably, has Liouville-Roth constant (or irrationality coefficient) no greater than \(7.6063\), and is suspected to have constant no greater than \(2.5\). (As a consequence of its irrationality, its L-R constant is \(\geq2\).)

Note, though, that each of these things is also true of literally 100% of numbers. And before you scoff at my use of the figurative 'literally', no no -- measure-theoretically, the non-(normal, transcendental, irrational, irrationality-coefficient-less-than-8) numbers make up exactly, mathematically 0% of the number line.

For the record: irrational algebraics like \(\sqrt2\) are also nonterminating and nonrepeating, and it's not clear what features of the stringwise-local decimal expansion (which seems to be the only thing \(\pi\) enthusiasts focus on,

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