On the central home for humility within genius

I first encountered reference to Schopenhauer in “Love Can Open Prison Doors” by Starr Daily, which itself is a truly remarkable story, short enough you can get through it in a day or two. (This slim volume provides the best insight into the mechanics — the physics, the how-to-do-it — of love I have yet encountered. Daily was a former actual prisoner who one day began to realize how love could transform the life of a habitual liar, con, scoundrel, rioter, and escape-artist into a life of honest, productive, sublime, contemplative, joy, with that innocence of childhood we all miss, coupled with mature wisdom we all seek. Its allegory is one of my favorites ever, so I remember small details like its references to Schopenhauer even though I last read it years ago.)

Schopenhauer
Schopenhauer

The author Daily mentions how, after his near-death enlightment, early on his path out of misery, he took Schopenhauer’s great tome on pessimism and systematically transformed its “reasons to be miserable” into their opposite form: reasons to be happy. He took each sad sentence and inverted its reason for pessimism into a reason to be happy. This may be, I am beginning to see, the correct way to read Schopenhauer. We’ll talk about that more in a moment.

Years later, I encountered references to Schopenhauer from time to time, but in the last couple of years such references have become increasingly compelling. I decided to begin seeking into the penumbra of lightweight quotations from Schopenhauer, to begin understanding him. Thanks to Bernardo Kastrup‘s enthusiasm, I have already decided I want to read him directly, but who has the time to sit down with 700 pages of Will and Representation? So I’m warming up to the challenge by reading in a spiral around him. Sometimes such a spiral concludes by reading such a large book, and sometimes it concludes by finding some flaw or another which leaves me no longer interested, and moving on to other things.

Schopenhauer on genius

A while back, I came upon an intriguing reference to Schopenhauer’s ideas on genius. It was in reference to Wittgenstein, who apparently had defined his life by Schopenhauer’s idea of genius. I already had some context: A few years earlier, I stumbled across Wittgenstein as a side character in a biography of Kurt Gödel. They knew each other, though Gödel was a Platonist, and Wittgenstein was not, so they were inevitably at odds. Nevertheless, Wittgenstein’s unique presence and genius-like character were described in pieces as Gödel’s story unfolded, since they had a few notable interactions. My study-spiral around Wittgenstein left me intrigued, but I only read a few excerpts before moving on to other things in life. Until recently. I came upon a comment about how he had defined his life — his unique presence and genius-like character — by his teenage understanding of Schopenhauer’s ideas on genius. He was given as an example of someone who did philosophy the way I do it, by studying it and then applying it, except his application was on the subject of genius.

This drew me more toward Schopenhauer, and so this morning, in an idle moment, I hit the search engines for “Schopenhauer on genius.” I found a few small quotes at first, and wanted more. Thankfully, BrainPickings has a page on this. They do a great job of going a little deeper than a stone skipping across the surface, as their quotes come with a little context. Here is where I discovered rather quickly how happy I am that I came to know Schopenhauer’s insights into genius late in life. This is because I probably would have done what Wittgenstein did with it — and that would be the wrong thing, which I know because I already did something similar, just without being inspired by Schopenhauer.

As I contemplated Schopenhauer’s words on genius, I approached the contemplation with a longstanding loathing of genius. I had years ago come to the hard realization that one of the greater “mistakes” of my life happened when I was in my late teens and early twenties and began believing what other people were saying about me. I was in the honors program at the urban university of my hometown, so the forces weren’t too sophisticated, but I was surrounded by smart people, and all evidence was that I was one of them. A genius of sorts, and, sadly, I believed them. Consequently, I began doing what Wittgenstein did, which I only years later recognized was the wrong way to go about things.

Long story short, I eventually came to the realization that calling someone a genius places a terrible burden on them. Few survive and are able shake off this burden in the absolute manner which eventually became necessary for me to do. That process was quite painful and consumed several years, so, I now loathe the idea of genius, having suffered much in untangling from it. I actively teach my children a distinct skepticism for anyone’s claim of genius, in hopes of preventing them from going through the misery of getting free from it someday. My friends who are not yet free from its binding force sadden me equally as much as their genius inspires.

Years later now, I understand the importance of humility. Indeed, I am as fascinated with humility now as I was with genius then, although wisdom has also given me the desire to make internal changes, rather than external ones (which is generally what we’re doing in our early twenties when the freedom to define who we are is finally granted, ironically only after we have learned to make external changes rather than the deeper internal ones), and that internal direction changes the nature of the pursuit. But the pursuit reminds me of Descartes’ famous pursuit of Truth over Beauty, one of those eternal pursuits with no end:

The two men locked swords, and swung and parried for a few moments. Swiftly, Descartes brought his sword in one last time and delivered a final blow. His opponent’s sword flew up into the air. Descartes put the point of his sword to his challenger’s throat and, glancing at Mme. de Rosay, said to him: “The lady has beautiful eyes, and for that I will spare your life.” He let him go, and pulled back in disgust. The lady rushed over to Descarte’s side. One last time, Descartes stared into those beautiful eyes, and turning away from her, he said: “Your beauty is unmatched, but I love truth the most.” He left the two stunned figures by the roadside and in a minute gathered his valet, and in a whirl of dust they were off to Paris. (Descarte’s Secret Notebook)

Humility is another one of those eternal pursuits, like truth and beauty. With this in mind, as I read about Schopenhauer’s ideas on genius, I tossed the following quote around in my mind, like tasting a new wine, testing it and feeling its contours, pondering it. At first I liked it, but something was not quite right. More contemplation soon cracked the walnut open, with a realization about the relationship to humility which neither Wittgenstein nor Schopenhauer apparently knew (although, having read little of either, I may be wrong).

Both of them seem to have lost connection to a certain pure innocence of childhood, an uncondescending joy which is an essential ingredient in good genius. Good genius is genius governed by humility. Here is one of the quotes from Schopenhauer:

The common mortal, that manufacture of Nature which she produces by the thousand every day, is, as we have said, not capable, at least not continuously so, of observation that in every sense is wholly disinterested, as sensuous contemplation, strictly so called, is. He can turn his attention to things only so far as they have some relation to his will, however indirect it may be… The man of genius, on the other hand, whose excessive power of knowledge frees it at times from the service of will, dwells on the consideration of life itself, strives to comprehend the Idea of each thing, not its relations to other things; and in doing this he often forgets to consider his own path in life, and therefore for the most part pursues it awkwardly enough. While to the ordinary man his faculty of knowledge is a lamp to lighten his path, to the man of genius it is the sun which reveals the world… The man in whom genius lives and works is easily distinguished by his glance, which is both keen and steady, and bears the stamp of perception, of contemplation.

As I contemplated this quote, already knowing through the lens of Kurt Gödel’s biography that the way (early) Wittgenstein did genius was a little too outwardly excessive, and also knowing through that same lens that the way Gödel did it was too inwardly excessive, I soon saw in a momentary flash of insight where the proper place of humility comes in genius: it is within the very center, like this:

<---- introverted genius ---------- humble genius ---------- extroverted genius ----->

Genius must make a central home for humility — not the vapid submissive obedience form of outward humility which is popular in the world, but the true humility which comes with a proper understanding of one’s place in the world, which — as though we were grains of sand on a seashore against an ocean bay at the foot of great mountains, surrounded by greatness which reaches to infinity — is an abiding sense of smallness.

A sense of our native smallness must permeate our awareness in equal balance with any sense of greatness, or else genius goes too far.

A mistake I made in youth — though I have learned to live without regrets, so even as I call it a mistake I know it was not — was to approach genius in the unbounded way early Wittgenstein did. From what I can tell, he was trying to manifest genius by making outward changes, which comes at the expense of inward growth. This is forgiveable, for a teenager. This is what most people do with the self-awareness of above-average intelligence, and it requires a dedicated exertion NOT to do this. That exertion is one of methodically applying the principles which govern humility in order to check the principles which govern genius — kind of like the checks and balances within a good government.

I think genius is one of the places where heaven touches earth; it is given in consequence of suffering. The crucible that forges a genius is truly a painful one. Whether for the individual or someone in his lineage, suffering created the crucible in which genius is borne.

Genius is given by God to compensate for suffering. It is like a spot which is worn away through friction, and God has placed a patch of his love upon the spot, and there is where genius comes into being. I may not be saying it well, but this is a principle I well understand, rooted in solid things, like the belief that God is nearest to the broken heart. The contrite spirit is beloved and protected by God.

Now, what is gratitude for this touch of God if we then take the gift of genius which he has given in direct proportion to our suffering, and exalt ourselves instead of him with it? I do not mean that we must become priests or monks or anything like what the world perceives as a life dedicated to God — those are more outward manifestations than the inner dedication I mean. I mean that, as we in youth begin to realize that we are gifted intellectually, we should learn to see it for what it is: a gift. What do you do with a gift? Spend it foolishly, and arrive at the catastrophic collapse of ego which I experienced in my 30s? Or worse, find a way to keep that mad candle burning, instead of crashing, and thus never learn the lesson of life which is given to geniuses: who we are is as much a gift as it is our own making, and the gift portion is where the truer joy, the deeper one, that outlasts our lifetime, lives.

A gift from heaven

Where Schopenhauer talks about the genius being able to reach eternal things, he should have also said it was because it is Eternity, reaching into our miserable ternity, and comforting us by allowing us to see meaning in the seeming meaningless and misery. When we try to take ownership of it, as Wittgenstein did early in his journey, we diminish it and miss the point. (I understand Wittgenstein, like Malcolm X, changed so deeply he’s not easy to summarize like this, but it appears that he had a fascination with the wrong flavor of genius early on.)

In this way, humility sits at the center of genius and governs it, slowly transforming suffering back into joy, instead of diving into escapism of one form or another, using our view from the top of a mountain to steal from those who are still climbing, thereby adding to the suffering, in the way fools do before they become wise. The risk is that some geniuses never do become wise. Maybe even most.

I look forward to reading Schopenhauer, but I will be reading his words like Starr Daily did: quietly transforming his pessimism, his loss of joy, his loss of childhood innocence, into a gain of joy, a regaining of innocence (which is the best wisdom) and appreciating the structure of his words without paying much attention to their outer shell, which leaned too far toward misery.

Getting Sketchup running on ReactOS in VirtualBox

Yes, it can be done. You have to use the 2014 version of Sketchup, and you have to tweak the Windows Imaging Component DLLs which are not installed by the .NET 4 installer. The .NET 4 installer only installs a couple of the 4 DLLs you need, so you have to deploy the other two and install/register them. This information is likely useful for anyone else running into “Windows Imaging Component Install Failed” or even “Cannot Update a Checked (Debug) System” types of issues. (If you got to this page after you’ve gotten the latter error, use the dotnetfx_cleanup_tool described here to get your .NET back to a clean state.)

I used these excellent instructions to initially install ReactOS in VirtualBox.

I then installed the “Guest Editions CD Image” under the Device menu, and installed Guest Editions. This step is optional for getting Sketchup running, but I always find it helpful to be able to drag-n-drop, cut-n-paste, between guest and host, etc. This includes enabling these features once installed, under the “Devices” menu, for example, as seen in this screenshot:

I also enabled Shared Clipboard and added a Shared Folder so I could easily move files from my host machine to the guest.

Likewise, with the optional step of installing an audio driver to eliminate the popup that appears when you first start ReactOS. Simply performing the first three steps in these instructions were sufficient for me. Finally, I had a clean vanilla install of ReactOS in VirtualBox, ready for the Sketchup install. I tried many options, but eventually, this is what worked:

Installing Sketchup into ReactOS

1. Install .NET 4.0 using the link provided for Frameworks on the ReactOS site. Restart when requested.

2. This site gave me the information I needed to know what files were required for Windows Imaging Component. The first two are installed along with .NET, but you need the other two “Photo” DLLs as well:

C:\ReactOS\system32\WindowsCodecs.dll
C:\ReactOS\system32\WindowsCodecsExt.dll
C:\ReactOS\system32\WMPhoto.dll
C:\ReactOS\system32\PhotoMetadataHandler.dll

3. Download these last two DLLs from anywhere you trust. I found the dll4free site was able to give me the DLLs without sending me into rabbitholes of malware or advertising madness. As you can see in the screenshot, I grabbed the 6.0.6001.1800 32-bit version of WMPhoto. And 6.0.6001.1700 for PhotoMetadataHandler. But if you’re feeling frisky, try one of the newer versions if you want. This site also nicely explains how to install and register, which is the next step:

4. Put the 2 files into the location specified above (ReactOS\system32), then run the following command from a CMD window: %windir%\System32\regsvr32.exe photometadatahandler.dll. Then do the same for wmphoto.dll. When you are done with each, you’ll get a popup indicating success, as seen in the following screenshot:

5. Download SketchUp from 2014 using the link provided on Sketchup forums here. Install it as normal, woo-hoo, no errors.

If you need to convert a newer Sketchup file to this version, you can do this within the “Save As” prompt, and save it to 2014 version.

Hope this saves someone else the hours it took me to figure out how to do this.

On learning the quasicrystalline nature of prime numbers

It is wholly hilarious that I got to this point in studying prime numbers before I learned of the quasicrystalline nature of prime numbers, which was discovered by Freeman Dyson while in idle conversation with Hugh Montgomery over lunch one day in the early 1970s. I knew of the legendary conversation, but first learned of it well before I had an overall grasp of where prime numbers and the Riemann Hypothesis sit in relation to the rest of mathematics. And long before I began to understand what an eigenvalue is. I remember thinking “I’ve got to learn what eigenvalues are.” (The famous quote happened at the mention of 1 – [(sin pi*u)/(pi*u)]2, when Dyson said: ‘Hey, that’s the density of the pair correlation of eigenvalues of random matrices in the Gaussian Unitary Ensemble.’)

So I knew that Freeman Dyson had made a keen observation that mentioned eigenvalues, but didn’t know it was related to quasicrystals, didn’t remember it was related to randomness, didn’t know it was related to prime numbers, and at the time I learned of it, didn’t know what an eigenvalue was, each of which I have studied independently from a number of different directions as I make my peripatetic walk through mathematics over the past decade and a half. Until today.

Today, while working and idly watching yet another video on the Riemann Hypothesis (on the theory that I usually learn at least one new thing by looking at something familiar from another angle), I was startled by the reference to the connection to the conversation with Freeman Dyson.

Oh, that conversation was related to prime numbers? Cool! How did I miss that?

I quickly searched on the topic and pulled up a couple dozen webpages, each of which looks quite fascinating, and a quick skim of the first few has already got lightbulbs going off over my head.

Alas, got work to do, so I’ll reserve deeper comments for the future, but right now I’m just laughing out louad at myself for taking this long to discover that my intuitive hunch about the physics of prime numbers was already worked out decades ago. (I’ve encountered other “physics of prime numbers” theories from time to time, but none this credible.)

0. But wait — before I go — this is also the second major reference to the crystalline nature of That Which Underlies Everything. I long held a faint “no that can’t be true” intuitive hunch that the nature of the primordial substance out of which everything is created (desire? aether? consciousness? definitely not strings) is crystalline in nature. It probably is rooted in “the sea of glass like crystal” which is before the throne of God, but it appears from time to time in thought experiments on the nature of Everything, only to be quickly dismissed because crystals in my mind are rigid, unmoving, and this doesn’t strike me as an apt description of God, or heaven, which to me are the quintessence of motion, energy, life, action.

1. Oops, I guess I’m actually talking about the “first major reference” in my experience to the crystalline nature of That Which Underlies Everything, because the second one is in Schrodinger’s small book What Is Life described beautifully in a chapter of another book I’m reading about quantum biology. I discovered this only a few weeks ago (he was describing DNA a decade before it was discovered as “an aperiodic crystal),” and this made the crystalline nature of the prime substance more likely. My thought experiments stopped dismissing the crystal structure so quickly.

2. And then, a few days ago, while searching on the meaning of the word “tensor” because I’ve fallen in love with how it is a better tool for understanding measurement than the ridiculously flawed Euclidian approach, I discover to my jaw-dropping astonishment that the person who first used the term in the way it is commonly used today was Woldemar Voigt, an expert in crystals. Crystals? I thought tensors flowed, do crystals flow? A lot fell into place when I discovered this, and new questions about the nature of crystals began to form.

So now it’s not a matter of letting the underlying crystal structure remain a little longer in thought experiments… it’s a matter of beginning to devote entire thought experiments to the  underlying crystal structure.

3. And now… prime numbers are crystalline?

Wow. Here we go.

I know I’ve stumbled upon these insights in the past, just never saw them. Three independent references out of the blue in as many weeks lends an aura of grace to the adventure. It is part of the human condition that we are presented with deep insights continually, but are only able to see them when we’re looking. I’m excited to see what comes next.

Well the whole point of this post was to pull together in a single place a bunch of URLs that I will now start reading in earnest, so here we are, a few of the most interesting ones that appeared during the preliminary search:

https://www.math.columbia.edu/~woit/wordpress/?p=1506
https://www.ias.edu/ideas/2013/primes-random-matrices <– this one looks good all the way through
http://empslocal.ex.ac.uk/people/staff/mrwatkin//zeta/dyson.htm
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Montgomery%27s_pair_correlation_conjecture
https://golem.ph.utexas.edu/category/2013/06/quasicrystals_and_the_riemann.html
https://www.americanscientist.org/article/the-spectrum-of-riemannium
https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6541886
https://www.dartmouth.edu/~chance/chance_news/recent_news/primes_part3.pdf (PDF)
https://mathoverflow.net/questions/54501/riemann-zeta-function-connection-to-quantum-mechanics
https://www.wired.com/2013/02/math-and-nature-universality/
http://guava.physics.uiuc.edu/~nigel/courses/563/Essays_2008/PDF/lyon.pdf (PDF)
http://www.ams.org/publicoutreach/math-history/prime-chaos.pdf (PDF)
https://icerm.brown.edu/materials/Abstracts/sp-s13-w3/Random_Matrix_theory_and_the_zeros_of_the_Riemann_zeta-function_]_Brian_Conrey,_American_Institute_of_Mathematics.pdf (PDF)
https://arxiv.org/pdf/1305.3342.pdf (PDF)
https://www.seedmagazine.com/content/article/prime_numbers_get_hitched/
https://math-frolic.blogspot.com/2013/05/riemann-dyson-montgomery-quasi-crystals.html
https://web.williams.edu/Mathematics/sjmiller/public_html/math/papers/sym1010064.pdf (PDF)
https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/4x3me3/quasicrystals-are-natures-impossible-matter
https://journals.plos.org/plosbiology/article?id=10.1371/journal.pbio.0020448

There, that ought to be enough to get started… now, back to work.

Reads article about a rogue process

Reads article about a rogue process in Windows related to Microsoft Store. Reads enough of the article to recognize it’s a component he never uses, so can be safely disabled. Opens command prompt, uses it to invoke regedit to edit registry to disable the subprocess that is most suspicious, leaving the client-facing one intact, because it hosts commonly-used programs. Leaves regedit open for a couple days in case something got broken. Archives the article locally in case there is an issue with the tweak. Blogs about it. Goes to sleep.

First qutrit teleportation! Complex high-dimensional quantum states go from zero to infinity in one nanosecond

I knew there was a link between pure logic and the real world, and I knew it was through a window we call infinity, but I had no idea that physical “teleportation” of quantum states would be where ternary logic touches the physical world.

The first qutrit had a single digit beyond normal binary quantum teleportation, but now that we’ve broken that barrier, it will be easy to explain to people how the qutrit is not just the addition of another “it” to the “bit” concept, but the addition of a whole “infinity.”

As in, an entire mappable 3-D landscape, not unlike the physical world.

More later as the epiphany coheres.


 

Wow, everyone is writing about this. So glad to see:

https://science.slashdot.org/story/19/08/23/2212204/complex-quantum-teleportation-achieved-for-the-first-time

https://phys.org/news/2019-08-complex-quantum-teleportation.html

https://www.popularmechanics.com/technology/a28798458/quantum-teleportation/

https://arxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1906/1906.09697.pdf

https://physics.aps.org/synopsis-for/10.1103/PhysRevLett.123.070505

https://medium.com/@teodorteofilov/first-three-dimensional-quantum-teleportation-achived-for-the-first-time-b99157252a78

On group dynamics and critical thinking

A friend told me a story recently, and it so purely reveals a dynamic we do not often see clearly, I’m delighted to discover it. I think it is quite a profound insight. He is a member of an online group discussing a new cryptocurrency, one of many hundreds of similar groups, each of which is in a tiny ecosystem within the larger ecosystem of cryptocurrencies. Each of these smaller groups is usually led by a charismatic and/or brilliant innovator, with a core team surrounded by advocates and on the periphery, detractors.

The leader of the group one day asked him privately in a casual and friendly manner why he was so consistently hostile and negative in discussions. Since he was having fun overall, he was surprised that anyone could say this. Curious, he pulled a few other people aside one by one and asked them if he seemed hostile or negative to them. Most of them would not answer the question directly! But in their vague and wordy answers he was able to see hints that they did perceive him that way, just couldn’t say it. Finally one gave a direct answer: “No! I love your contributions, they’re great, bringing up real concerns that we all need to think about.”

As he pondered this paradox of contradictory opinions, it occurred to him that the people who perceived him as hostile were fully invested in this single cryptocurrency, while he was involved in numerous other similar discussions on all levels of the larger ecosystem.

To sum: people who thought he was hostile could not say so directly nor could they perceive him objectively. They were seeing “only the good” possibilities of their given crypto, and thus found his reasonable questions and comments to be attacks. On the other side, people who thought his insights were good and useful did not see that he was hostile or negative.

Thinking about this dynamic a bit, this appears to explain a dynamic in conversations with people who have and do not have critical thinking. I believe this is a description of something that happens in almost every group ever, but not often is it probed so concisely. As a fan of Rene Girard’s thoughts on scapegoats, I think it goes quite deep. There are many more insights buried in this gem. I’m sure there are experts who know all about this particular dynamic and recognize it immediately, but for me, it’s really insightful about the nature of people who never learned to think critically, and something I will think about for some time to come.

It appears that people who do not have critical thinking skills are only seeing part of the picture. They invest all their trust in someone who sees more of the picture, and then defend that other person with all their ability. Thus, they see anyone who is not doing the exact same thing as a threat to the whole group. On the other hand, people who do have critical thinking skills are more able to trust their own judgments and therefore do not invest as much trust in others, and thus see things more on neutral terms. They do not have a need to be defensive, so they aren’t, at least not in this dynamic (I’ve seen critical thinkers who were defensive, but it happened on very principled lines, not personal.)

This is related to binary vs ternary thinking, and of course the scapegoat mechanism, but this is enough for now, leaving that analysis for another day.

A conspiracy theory must involve Laniakean red strings somehow to be legit

What’s up with the maze of red strings that somehow defines the crazy consipiracy-theorist in the movies? It’s a meme that shows up often. I personally think the image is beautiful — I mean the Platonic meme itself — not the actual screenshots from scenes in movies. Such complexity! Such multidimensional beauty! Looking like a miniature fractal version of the Laniakean shape of the universe, or the wiring diagram of a part of the brain itself, these scenes have always won my heart, and shaped how I see the character from that point forward. I’m drawn in.

Getting data into Twilio parsed variable

It took several attempts, but I eventually found out why I could not access the value of a “parsed” variable within Twilio Studio while using the HTTP Widget. Someone else may encounter this error, so here’s how I resolved it. The following 3 attempts are screenshots from the log viewer built in to the studio.

1. This one is incorrect because it sends content_type “text/html.” Notice there isn’t even a “parsed” variable, as seen in the next screenshot. This is because Twilio only parses variables from Content Type “application/json”.

2. This one is incorrect because the JSON string is quoted. We correctly sent “application/json” but quoted the JSON. In other words, do not send “{JSON}” but rather, send {JSON}.

3. This one is finally correct. We get a parsed variable.

Here is the PHP code which correctly generated the variable:

<?php
$data = array("caller-exists"=>1);
header('Content-Type: application/json');
echo json_encode($data);
?>

Compile and Install FreeSWITCH 1.8.2 onto Ubuntu 18.4.2 LTS

This closely follows the excellent and very concise instructions at another site: “FreeSWITCH 1.8.2 on Ubuntu 18.4 LTS“. I found a few unexpected twists and turns before it was working, so I’ve put this information together to help others who encounter these or similar issues.

Dependencies

Starting on a freshly installed Ubuntu Server 18.4 (32bit), install these packages:

apt-get install --yes build-essential pkg-config uuid-dev \
zlib1g-dev libjpeg-dev libsqlite3-dev libcurl4-openssl-dev \
libpcre3-dev libspeexdsp-dev libldns-dev libedit-dev libtiff5-dev \
yasm libopus-dev libsndfile1-dev unzip

Compiling FreeSWITCH

Download the FreeSWITCH sources from here: https://files.freeswitch.org/freeswitch-releases/

Find the latest version, then use wget to pull the file into your /usr/src folder, which is where things like this usually happen:

cd /usr/src
wget https://files.freeswitch.org/freeswitch-releases/freeswitch-1.8.6.zip

When the file completes downloading, expand it, then move into the newly created folder:

unzip freeswitch-1.8.6.zip
cd freeswitch-1.8.6

In the file modules.conf I needed to comment two lines, so I opened it up in an editor: nano modules.conf and modified these lines by adding the comment character:

#languages/mod_lua

and

#applications/mod_signalwire

because attempting to compile FreeSWITCH with Lua or SignalWire threw errors. Once these were commented in modules.conf, compilation worked. (If you need to use these modules, there are better guides for you than this one):

./configure && make

If you see errors while compiling, you can either install missing packages or comment out any module that is throwing the error. After you make the change, re-start compilation by including a “make clean” like this:

./configure && make clean && make

After a successful compilation, you’ll see a screen like the following:

It’s time to install FreeSWITCH. The following command does it. The default location this will install into: /usr/local/freeswitch

sudo make install

Set Owner and Permissions

This summarizes the instructions at: https://freeswitch.org/confluence/display/FREESWITCH/Debian+Post-Install+Tasks

Create user ‘freeswitch’, add it to group ‘freeswitch’. Change owner and group of the freeswitch installation:

cd /usr/local
groupadd freeswitch
adduser --quiet --system --home /usr/local/freeswitch --gecos "FreeSWITCH open source softswitch" --ingroup freeswitch freeswitch --disabled-password
chown -R freeswitch:freeswitch /usr/local/freeswitch/
chmod -R ug=rwX,o= /usr/local/freeswitch/
chmod -R u=rwx,g=rx /usr/local/freeswitch/bin/*

Configure FreeSWITCH as systemd Service

Place the following configuration in a file at: /etc/systemd/system/freeswitch.service

[Unit]
Description=freeswitch
After=syslog.target network.target local-fs.target

[Service]
; service
Type=forking
PIDFile=/usr/local/freeswitch/run/freeswitch.pid
PermissionsStartOnly=true
; blank ExecStart= line flushes the list
ExecStart=
ExecStart=/usr/local/freeswitch/bin/freeswitch -u freeswitch -g freeswitch -ncwait -nonat -rp
TimeoutSec=45s
Restart=on-failure
; exec
WorkingDirectory=/usr/local/freeswitch/bin
User=root
Group=daemon
LimitCORE=infinity
LimitNOFILE=100000
LimitNPROC=60000
;LimitSTACK=240
LimitRTPRIO=infinity
LimitRTTIME=7000000
IOSchedulingClass=realtime
IOSchedulingPriority=2
CPUSchedulingPolicy=rr
CPUSchedulingPriority=89
UMask=0007

[Install]
WantedBy=multi-user.target

Note that this working systemd file came from the URL in the previous section. There are other examples online, but several didn’t work for me; this one did. To create the file, you could type cat >> /etc/systemd/system/freeswitch.service and paste the preceding text in, then close the file with CTRL-D. Or you could use vi or nano to create the file. Once the file is in place, start the service as described in the next section.

Starting and Confirming Service

Reload the service engine, then start the service:

systemctl daemon-reload
service freeswitch start

Use service freeswitch status to confirm it is running. When it is running reliably, you can “enable” it so it will run when the system boots up.

systemctl enable freeswitch.service

Reboot the machine, and then ensure service is running after reboot:

ps -aux|grep free

You should see that is a running process, if all went well.

 

The Greek subject lives in the excluded middle of binary logic

Well, well, well. I am delighted to find yet another piece of private intuition has a respectable home already existing in the public domain. I’ve been working on this insight for years, but not able to put it into words well enough to relay it to others coherently. Much to my delight, I find that Schrödinger already had the same observation, and saw it more clearly than me, though apparently not many realized the importance of what he was saying.

I was reading an article about the rather interesting angle on a new quantum theory called “Quantum Bayesianism” when I came across the following quote. I screenshotted and annotated it immediately, as I do with such things.

As you may know, I’ve been studying ternary logic for a long time now, and have written often about a particular tiny flaw in binary logic, which first arose in Greek thought. I’ve been able to trace the flaw within mathematics and logic back to Aristotle and Euclid’s original “dimensionless point” concept. They had a good reason for defining this — on the surface, it appears to solve a certain problem with measurement and everything works intuitively once you accept the fact that math exists in a different world than common everyday reality. But the assumption causes other problems, which took centuries to identify because Euclid and Aristotle’s insights worked so well.

The flaw is cleverly hidden, but once you see it, you begin to see it everywhere because… it is everywhere. It is hidden by being embedded in the definition of binary logic — not in its postulates or axioms, but deeper, in its first underlying assumption. Although it is plainly right in front of us, we don’t understand that, in order to accept it as true, we have to accept the existence of something that doesn’t exist… and this is where things begin to go wrong.

I knew that the logical flaw had huge consequences, because so much is dependent upon this form of logic (for one example, as is well known, computers operate at their most fundamental level using this logic). But I had a hard time figuring out what was the valuable thing being left out of binary logic, partly because I was using binary logic to contemplate binary logic. It was years before I even realized I was doing this, and began seeking to understand ternary logic on its own terms. It was still more years before I was beginning to make real breakthroughs in this area. I’m not smart enough to figure this out myself as if I were someone like C. S Peirce. Rather, I’m better at seeing a paradox when it is exposed by others (who usually have no idea how it’s related to the structure of binary logic), and then contemplating it. I do this one piece at a time, slowly building an internal database of seemingly unrelated pieces that each show a different facet of this problem.

Now I see this one, and it’s a big one. In order to make binary logic work, we have to move the stuff that normally fits into the “excluded middle” (i.e. whatever naturally exists between True and False) somewhere, because it no longer fits in the excluded middle. Until now, I thought the shift was a subtle one, where we simply started subtly emphasizing how we related to some things and de-emphasizing others, with effects that grew incrementally over time (very hard to research), but now I see we shifted ourselves* out of logic and math. And we lost track of the shift. We began thinking of the world as an external system, contemplated by a subject which had no relation to the external object except as an observer discovering “laws” and “principles” which guide the external world (and by extension, ourselves). In fact, we are very much actors who are intimately involved in what we’re contemplating. Only in the past century have we discovered quantum physics which forced us to put our consciousness back in to the mix of things. However, we are continually baffled by this realization because we’ve become so accustomed to thinking that… well… that we don’t exist, except as abstract observers of the world.

*This point is unfinished because I have other things I need to do now, but I think the point about judgment in this StackExchange article is relevant here. Did ancient Greeks shift the act of judgment? I think we did, and Frege noticed this when he made logic more rigorous.