Monday, March 11, 2013

Weyl and trying to do too much

Many times in my life I've tried to do too much and ended up feeling like an idiot. Like the time when I offered to read aloud and record (in a cassette. this was a long time ago...) a book of art history  to a friend of my then boyfriend's grandmother. She had lost her sight and was complaining that she couldn't read the books she wanted, as the libraries for legally blind people only had boring steamy romances. Boy, reading aloud and recording is not easy. The book never ended...and I stopped enjoying very soon...Maybe I should try to read it again.

Another example of biting more than I could chew was accepting to translate into English Giuseppe Longo's article on Hermann Weyl's `The mathematical continuum: from intuition to Logic'. Reading a language well enough to understand a book is in no-way preparation enough to translating it...but yeah, I persevered and these things were done. If only I could do things efficiently...


  1. Thanks for posting this, Valeria: I hadn't seen it before, and I'm looking forward to reading it!

    And of course I can fully relate to trying to do too much…

    1. Thanks Ulrik! the initial quote (from Weyl himself) is brilliant, isn't it? Peppe Longo has written some other interesting stuff that I also want to read. Keep me informed of your progress!

    2. It is a good quote: I hope we'll someday make progress on making the claim that mathematical concepts can capture the intuitive continuum less absurd. Non-standard analysis, synthetic geometry, coalgebra, and homotopy type theory all have something to add to the Weierstra├čian picture, but it would still be absurd to demand coincidence. Someday perhaps…

      I'll keep you posted on my progress: I just returned from Kanazawa where I presented some work on unfoldings at the PR2013 workshop. This was my first visit to Japan, and I hope not my last!

    3. Cool!! I hadn't heard about PR2013. looks like it was a very interesting meeting. I have never being to Japan, need to correct this soon.