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Bill Bucko

Qualitative vs. Quantitative

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I've posted this link already under R&R, but the essay is so GOOD I thought I should make sure you mathematicians have a chance to see it!

Here's a link to an entertaining essay by old-time Objectivist Jim Davidson (1930-1979) (MS 1952, MIT), the electrical engineer and inventor who first had the idea of tape recording lectures on Objectivism, around 1960:

http://www.hpcalc.org/hp48/docs/columns/davidson.html

first published in 65 Notes (July/August 1977, V4 N6 P25)

Jim owned one of the very first calculators ever made; you'd key in 2 + 2 and it'd display 3.999999. He had to caution us not to try dividing by zero, because too much of such fooling around might damage the circuits.

Please note: this Jim Davidson is not to be confused with the libertarian writer of the same name. From everything I heard, Jim wrote only for computer magazines. The essay linked to above is the only writing of his I've been able to find on the web. I did hear that he wrote many articles for Byte magazine, but the only one I've ever found was:

"Recurrence in Numerical Analysis," Byte, vol. 6, no. 4, April 1981, pp. 20-30

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