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/edu/ - Education

'The weapon of criticism cannot, of course, replace criticism of the weapon, material force must be overthrown by material force; but theory also becomes a material force as soon as it has gripped the masses.' - Karl Marx
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Hello comrades. I propose a general thread in an attempt to get the /edu/ ball rolling again. Everytime you visit /edu/, post in this thread. Tell us about what you're thinking about, what you're reading, an interesting thing you have learned today, anything! Just be sure to pop in and say hi.
419 posts and 84 image replies omitted. Click reply to view.



reading Common Sense by Thomas Paine. with the queen dead his anti-monarchy arguments feel more relevant. this shit based af


finished capital vol 1 today. first bit was engaging, got real boring in the middle and finished strong. I'll probably read something by lenin next


Read Cities of Salt some weeks ago, it's about how the discovery of oil changed a fictional, unnamed Arabian country. Excited to pick up the next two books in the trilogy which I assume will delve even more into class conflict, possible civil wars and national liberation.
Also found a pdf of some guide to dumpster diving on laincha, unfortunately, the author is an annoying right-libertarian and you can really tell


Starting Economics of Location/Die räumliche Ordnung der Wirtschaft by August Lösch.


Finished Marxist Glossary (2nd edition, 1947) by Llewellyn Harry Gould. It's a mediocre ML work, containing exactly what one would expect from that time: okayish description of Marxist concepts mixed together with random REEing at Anarchists and Trots. (Did you know that "Philistinism is another agency of Trotskyist provocation"? Riveting stuff.) I don't know why I bothered with it.


I'm feeling hungry
R u?



Rushed through Fair Division of the Commons, 2019 Thesis by Dominik Peters (DPhil in Computer Science). Not bad, but also not what I was hoping for as I was looking for a budget allocation procedure that is better than Paul Cockshott's proposal of just taking the arithmetic means.

Two nitpicks about the intro. First one:
<In the 1980s, social choice theorists noticed that under many of these rules, it can be beneficial for voters to abstain from an election. For example, it can happen that a voter who ranks candidate c in top position causes c to lose if the voter participates; if the voter abstains and does not submit the ranking, then c is elected by the rule. In particular, this occurs for voting rules from a class proposed by the 18th century French intellectual Condorcet.
Ambiguous language make this confusing to a lay person. The bit "this occurs" correctly refers to abstaining, but not the given drastic example where voting against the voter's top choice (failing that specifically is called mono-add top and the Condorcet method Simpson-Kramer Minmax meets it). This is also something the author knows as he tells you about one billion pages later.
Second one: A lot of stuff in this text is about allocating things with connectivity constraints, since for example individuals care that allocated plots of land are connected:
<This is in contrast to the situation with connectivity constraints, where it is known that EF1 and Pareto-optimality can be jointly achieved by maximising Nash welfare.
Typo. This is in contrast to the situation WITHOUT connectivity constraints…

I have more serious criticism of the section Preferences Single-Peaked on Circles. I don't follow the author's motivation for analyzing these patterns. He gives two reasons:
1. There are plenty decisions that are single-peaked on a line (true, consider setting a penalty for example) and circles are generalizing that. Stuff that cannot be well-represented with a line but with a circle looks like a very niche topic to me :P so that leaves us with the second motivation…
2. Simple computation. That's an important goal, but there are other avenues to it than assuming these preferences. He says that it makes Proportional Approval Voting easy. Normal PAV is hard because it tries to find the committee with the highest satisfaction score and that means combinatorial explosion. But if you are willing to tolerate slightly less proportional results you can just use Sequential Proportional Approval Voting, which greedily selects one winner, re-weights the ballots, selects a second winner, re-weights the ballots, and so on. He says that Young's Condorcet rule (find what would be the Condorcet winner if you deleted the smallest possible amount of ballots) can get hard to compute and it gets easy if everybody's preferences are single-peaked on a circle. Imagine actually proposing this to a committee as a general voting rule, why would they have these computationally pleasant preferences?! (Not accusing him he would do that, but then he has to admit there is not much practical scope for this.) Why not instead use a Condorcet method easy to compute while in similar spirit to Young (find what would be the Condorcet winner if you added the smallest possible amount of ballots, yep that's Simpson-Kramer Minmax).

Now for the alternative to using the means for allocating a budget, a variant of Moving Phantom Mechanisms he calls "Independent Markets". OK, this starts from the idea of median ratings which are super robust against exaggerations and then adds something that makes the ratings add up to the budget. This would be pretty good if not for a briefly mentioned
<tendency to shift the aggregate towards the uniform distribution…
This means this procedure is vulnerable to category spam! Whoever cooks up the categories can split up a topic into sub-topics and it will receive more funding. Even if there is no evil person doing this, the results get massively changed by whatever category-division scheme we happen to use. I cannot accept this. It is true that using just mean ratings instead is vulnerable to exaggeration, but this can be reduced by limiting how much voters can change a category's budget size from one referendum to the next, and it's still possible to change the funding drastically without waiting too long if only the intervals between the budget referendums are short enough.


comrades, does anybody have some good resources/starting points about the land back movement?
is it mainly a US/Canada movement or something prevalent in LATAM too?


Posted in the wrong thread, reposting here.
I read the nonfiction chapters of Half Earth Socialism.
The video game they made to promote the book is very fun and thought provoking, so I bought the book.

The book is not particularly good. It attempts to link the necessity of economic planning and large scale rewilding (half of the terrestrial surface must be nature preserves in order to have a viable ecosystem). The thesis of the book is that a planned economy is necessary to preserve human life on earth, but the argument entirely rests on the unsupported assertion that "Half of the earth could not remain uncommodified under capitalism". No attempt is made to develop this claim through an economic argument. The authors criticize John Bellamy Foster and the Monthly Review , saying no attempt to read Marx with green-tinted glasses is going to expunge the Promethian aspect of Hegel from Marx's work. Lacking a strong understanding of Marx's theory, the authors of Half Earth Socialism have no way to prove their point. Instead, they rely on extensive citations from the scientific literature describing the current impacts of the capitalist world-system, and tearing apart neoliberal fantasies about geoengineering. The book contains almost 50 pages of citations, and the main text including introduction is only 180 pages.

Its a very puzzling book, the authors are familiar with neurath, beer, etc regarding planned economies, but fail to invoke the law of requisite variety in their critiques of geoengineering, despite referencing it in planning. The authors and game developers had a research group during the game development process, and the game developers actually mentioned these undeveloped ideas in the general intellect unit podcast, that could have produce a systematic critique of geoengineering based on cybernetic or economic theory.

The high reference density and tendency to citing an argument instead of printing it reminds me of a lot of popular science / popular economics writing. I am pretty disappointed with the book, but look forward to reading the fiction chapter at the end. The authors are at least capable researchers and prose writers.



Dictionary of Accepted Ideas by Gustave Flaubert, translated by Jacques Barzun, 3rd edition (an unlikely candidate for translation given how punny the original is). Was OK, sensible chuckle here and there. Tropes, silly recommendations, nonsensical etymologies. It doesn't have the same arrogant didactic tone many satirical dictionaries have (yes, this is an established genre). Some entries:

<MACARONI. When prepared in the Italian style, is served with the fingers.

<MATERIALISM. Utter the word with horror, stressing each syllable.

<PRINCIPLES. Always “eternal.” Nobody can tell their nature or number; no matter, they are sacred all the same.

<PRAGMATIC SANCTION. Nobody knows what it is.

<SEA. Bottomless. Symbol of infinity. Induces deep thoughts. At the shore one should always have a good glass. While contemplating the sea, always exclaim: “Water, water everywhere.”


thats so fucking cool, thanks for sharing it


Picked up a book about church property and Mexican reform between 1856-1910 at the bookstore today, so happy to learn about that. Also found a book published in 1943 from a set about Mexican antiquity at my grandma's house. I hope I can read it, comprehend it, and maybe talk to her about it (it's in Spanish)


Tell me more about the idea that the only way to get ahead in Soviet Russia was to screw people over. Reading recommendations, possibly?


Finished A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume I by Augustus De Morgan, a mathematician collecting crank theories in math and physics (zero times zero is one, the sun is made of ice, and many others). Certainly enough stuff in there for a fun blog post or two, but as a whole tedious because he had a massive collection and did not prune the list for a best of the worst. So you get a torrent of people with wrong values for pi. There is also religious stuff that kinda blurs together in my eyes as I am both uninterested in those controversies and ignorant of where exactly the crankery stops from the author's point of view (he was some type of Christian).


I just also read Half-Earth Socialism. This is really like if Towards A New Socialism had a retarded little brother. Bringing up Kantorovich and Neurath, countering Austrian economists, all of that you also find in Cockshott's writings.

What does this book bring to the table that isn't in TANS already? Three things:
1. Anti-nuclear hysteria. The authors go ad-hom against the pro-nuclear minority among the greens like George Monbiot by bringing up one of those guys in one interview being dismissive of vegetarianism. I'm 100 % certain Monbiot is strongly in favor of reducing meat consumption.

2. Belief that there is an invisible hand that holds nature in equilibrium. I need some justification here because they never explicitly say it and they even mention several times that nature went through several mass extinction events before the appearance of humans. My point is they talk like they believe in natural equilibrium. They want to keep massive chunks of land off limits for humans to keep bio-diversity. But regulations can require diversity. If you have good regulations and the means to check and punish, what's the problem with humans being in the picture? And mass extinction can also happen without human help, so their big idea that they named their book after doesn't make much sense IMHO.

3. They sketch some future scenario with people having a mishmash of various vouchers (also with a bonus for skilled work because they are more conservative than Cockshott) and waiting queues. They oppose labor vouchers as pseudo-rational because the vouchers have a one-dimensional character and planning with physical constraints must be multi-dimensional. In their view, one-dimensional planning for profit-maximizing is wrong and so the one-dimensional vouchers must also be wrong. But this does not follow. Capitalist profit is one-dimensional because it is a goal in itself. Your consumer budget is a means to various ends. Your consumption is always a multi-dimensional affair. For a given pile of various consumer items to allocate, having multiple voucher systems does nothing to protect the environment better than allocating via a one voucher system and only serves to reduce consumer freedom.

<Just weeks after the Fukushima disaster, the German Green Party took power at state level for the first time…
The German Greens already entered a national ruling coalition in 1998.


>>11877 (me)
Throughout the book, there are bad psychological takes, not just that one thing about pro-nuclear greens:

They claim the reason Thomas Moore did write Utopia not in the style of a proposal was that because Plato lived in a society people more directly and consciously shaped so Moore was incapable of thinking that way. A simple alternative motivation would be to avoid punishment.

And they also don't seem to know that Plato was basically fascist (inb4 calling me ahistorical for that), but just mention him as an inspiring thinker together with Neurath (who certainly wouldn't like being grouped together with him!).

And they repeatedly claim a distinction between cybernetics people who want to control and economic optimizers who are somehow less authoritarian. This appears to be a figment of the imagination of the author they got this idea from. Maybe that guy found good support for the thesis, but they don't bring that to the reader of their book. Instead they give you Stafford Beer as a counter-example to this claimed pattern.

Despite being written three decades after TANS, the authors neither have any new proposals for allocation systems or communication tools / decision methods they came up with themselves, nor do they give an overview of such systems developed by others or even a single recommendation (like LiquidFeedback).


Finished A Square Meal (2016) by the couple Jane Ziegelman & Andrew Coe, a book about eating habits and food-provision policies during the Great Depression. Meh. Not much thought went into the presentation. The chapters don't even have names. They mention the rumor that British pilots ate carrots in WWII to improve their night sight, but not that it was actually Brit propaganda to troll the Nazis, tsk. They go on for too long about what happened in the kitchens of President Hoover and President Roosevelt. I expected to read about at least a few food-poisoning scandals, but no.


ive been thinking about leftist ethical realism
does it exist?
if so i really need some resources
books videos anything
(preferably not christian nonsense)


what books exposes liberal notions of democracy and electoralism as being wrong ?.


More than a century ago, Robert Michels analysed the structure of the German Social Democrats and called what he found the iron law of oligarchy. In the 1950s, C. Wright Mills wrote The Power Elite. What's probably more exciting to you is a recent US study about how much political decisions coincide with the views of people at different income levels, but I don't have the link atm.



Just finished The Man Who Loved Only Numbers by Paul Hoffman, a book about the legendary mathematician Paul Erdos for a general audience. Many, many weird anecdotes. I knew he was weird, but goddamn. The author also manages to squeeze in anecdotes about Russell and Ramanujan and others.


Does anyone have any recommended readings on the first point in this article, on the construction of the so-called Western civilization and how it was in reality? Graeber is just dissing some retard here.


Z library is fucking dead


Isn't Z-Library mirrored on other sites (ex. Libgen)?


I've been reading some Marx and Engels recently. Some question arose though and if anyone is willing to clarify things or just discuss them.

At the end of Socialism: Scientific and Utopian, Engels writes out the main contradictions in capitalism. One of them the contradiction between the way production is organized: the labour is collective, yet the appropriation is purely private in nature. This contradiction is resolved when the appropriation is collective, and the surplus created is used not to replicate capital or profit but to develop society more.

Many times they discuss how the economy functions on fundamental laws (like the appropriation of surplus) which cannot be changed. But doesn't this somehow imply that socialism, that is, the transitory stage, the dictatorship of the proletariat, is simply the class conscious proletariat only manipulating capitalism like one would manipulate an experiment, in a controlled manner?

Is this why Lenin says that socialism is the dictatorship of the proletariat plus monopoly capital?

This kind of thinking, that we are actually not changing anything, but we are consciously manipulating the economy – is this the point of socialism?


Finished How to Bake Pi by Eugenia Cheng (2015), an OK book explaining math and category theory in plain language using cooking metaphors (not that much about pi though) and just started reading another book by her.


Where do you find these fascinating books? Do you just browse randomly in your local bookshop?


Some part of it, yes, but not all of it, based on my own experience.


Pirate archivists ftw

I haven't checked it and never used Z-Library so I don't know if this is pure archivism or available in a browsable format. Tor site also seems to work, because they seized the domain and not the server I think.



My memory is awful, I can read a book today and barely remember it in a month.
It's kinda disheartening


i was thinking, how can you make Tanks and Anti-Air equipment when you are just a guerrilla and not an nation ?.


u don't (pretty much)
The Che pdf talks about the ultimate goal of growing from a guerrilla force, to a conventional one (guerrilla forces don't win wars)
The other one just talks about air defense if you don't have real air defense


>Aberrant cortical spine dynamics after concussive injury are reversed by integrated stress response inhibition
>After traumatic brain injury, temporary pharmacological inhibition of the integrated stress response (ISR) with a small-molecule inhibitor (ISRIB) rescued long-lasting trauma-induced cognitive deficits. Here, we found that ISRIB treatment rapidly and persistently reversed the aberrant changes in cortical spine dynamics in the parietal cortex while rescuing working memory deficits. These data suggest that the link between the ISR and memory function involves, at least in part, changes in neuronal structure. Targeting ISR activation could serve as a promising approach to the clinical treatment of chronic cognitive deficits after brain injuries.
>Traumatic brain injury (TBI) is a leading cause of long-term neurological disability in the world and the strongest environmental risk factor for the development of dementia. Even mild TBI (resulting from concussive injuries) is associated with a greater than twofold increase in the risk of dementia onset. Little is known about the cellular mechanisms responsible for the progression of long-lasting cognitive deficits. The integrated stress response (ISR), a phylogenetically conserved pathway involved in the cellular response to stress, is activated after TBI, and inhibition of the ISR—even weeks after injury—can reverse behavioral and cognitive deficits. However, the cellular mechanisms by which ISR inhibition restores cognition are unknown. Here, we used longitudinal two-photon imaging in vivo after concussive injury in mice to study dendritic spine dynamics in the parietal cortex, a brain region involved in working memory. Concussive injury profoundly altered spine dynamics measured up to a month after injury. Strikingly, brief pharmacological treatment with the drug-like small-molecule ISR inhibitor ISRIB entirely reversed structural changes measured in the parietal cortex and the associated working memory deficits. Thus, both neural and cognitive consequences of concussive injury are mediated in part by activation of the ISR and can be corrected by its inhibition. These findings suggest that targeting ISR activation could serve as a promising approach to the clinical treatment of chronic cognitive deficits after TBI.


I'm not an expert on integrated stress response, but don't you want that most of the time


Read what books are important to you, and then after reading it, reread it later. Highlight or make sticky notes of important passages so you can find them easier later.


>>11986 (me)
Not sure if that's a facetious comment since Cheng has mainstream-press popularity (as much as you can have as a mathematician) and I expected a bit of ridicule in this thread because even your average teenager without good math grades can just fly through these books like they are nothing, so the stuff might be too trivial for some here. Her goal is the same as Quanta Magazine: Explain stuff as simply as possible to the broadest audience. The language is very easy for the most part, once in a fortnight a special term comes by and is explained immediately. I'm already done with another book by her.

After giving me diabetes with the recipes in How to Bake Pi, Eugenia Cheng shows in the follow-up The Art of Logic in an Illogical World how to argue why your taxes must pay for my health care using the power of facts and logic (while not neglecting emotion). There is also a lot about discrimination. In general she writes from a liberal-progressive POV. Some handy diagrams are shown to reveal pseudo-conflicts due to imprecise language (e. g. saying a statement is not true does not necessarily mean your stance is a polar opposite) and due to different levels of generalizing different people are on at the same time. I believe some conservatives would rather defenestrate themselves than getting lectured about her "cuboid of privilege". Now that's not a logical reaction and the cuboid makes perfect sense, believe me. Though one supposed example of tight logical reasoning I found a bit iffy:
<1. If you say women are inferior, that is insulting to women.
<2. If you think that “feminine” is an insulting way to describe a man, you are saying that women are inferior.
<3. Therefore if you think that “feminine” is an insulting way to describe a man, you are insulting women.
In my experience people with a negative attitude about feminine men tend to think less of women and it's also my experience that people with negative attitude about feminine men tend to make fun of mannish women. Any of this is sexist behavior for sure. But would you seriously argue that a person making fun of mannish women logically means that person must also hate men?

Overall it's not bad, but my impression is that it's a bit worse than How to Bake Pi. Maybe because of some déjà vu. (And of course that experience depends on reading order, so is it really a worse book?) The pattern of Battenberg cake is discussed again, the joy of toddlers who figure out climbing stairs comes up again, the philosopher Michael Dummet is quoted again (even the same quote).

I have started yet another book by her, The Joy of Abstraction, and I'm 10 % in and it looks really promising so far, deeper than How to Bake Pi while still very easy to follow.


I've generally been obsessed over Jacques Elull recently, the way he writes is fascinating. I've only begun reading Propaganda and the way everything is broken down is amazing, I'd describe it better if I weren't half asleep right now.

And also, I like how the cover is hot pink for some reason.


Can you write more about the book, anon? I remember wanting to read Ellul, but dropped it because I considered thought that his work will be lot of theoretical stuff and thus will be pretty hard and boring.


Reading some essays by Otl Eicher on design (written in the 1980s). Never heard another soul hating a particular fork or a chair with this intensity. On the question of how artsy design should be vs ergonomics and economics, he judged almost everything as too artsy-fartsy, even Bauhaus! Still he stopped short of saying aesthetics shouldn't count at all. Politically he was apparently some greenish liberal humanist oddball. He hated big institutions, whether state or private. He wanted to have the boss and designer and engineer discussing ideas together at one table, and he believed that cannot ever happen when you go beyond a certain size (sampling though?).


.pdf plox


this guy DJ Pons cracks me the fuck up. He's some researcher from new zealand who's probably the world's most dedicated proponent of dialectical materialism at this moment (tho probably unbeknownst to him).
>Abstract: The practice of project management is described by a codified standard, but many projects fail nonetheless. This paper describes a new conceptual approach for project management, using a systems-modelling approach to create a graphical representation. New activities are identified not evident in existing models. The model achieves a three-way integration of theory (proposed causality), process (operational detail), and software tools.

Idk if my brain is just fried from reading too much commie lit but this reads like a joke lmao.

Also his conceptualization of the cordus model brings science back to causality, back to materialism, and is all around very dialectical. It's honestly the most optimistic thing i've read in a long time, i dont care if it turns out to be a debunked chimera in 100 years (not that it has any takers now), because this guy (and the other authors) is bringing militant materialism back to science.


File: 1669490899676.pdf (28.64 MB, 255x217, Propaganda.pdf)

A lot of what Elull writes is theoretical, and it is very lengthy and verbose, but surprisingly I've never felt bored reading it. Reading anything by him felt more as if I was trying to understand the world around me.

As for Propaganda itself, it's hard to summarize it all, and I'm not going to copy paste the wiki summary of the book because anyone can do that. I can only describe it as "an explanation for why and how I would have gotten sucked into ____ politics." For a book written in the 1960's it's still extremely relevant, maybe even more so.

<Emotionalism, impulsiveness, excess, etc—all these characteristics of the individual caught up in a mass are well known and very helpful to propaganda. Therefore, the individual must never be considered as being alone; the listener to a radio broadcast, though actually alone, is nevertheless part of a large group, and he is aware of it. Radio listeners have been found to exhibit a mass mentality. All are tied together and constitute a sort of society in which all individuals are accomplices and influence each other without knowing it.

I'm sorry see if this works.


what the fuck I wasn't expecting Foner's Reconstruction to be like 600 pages



OK but you still need some kind of review at the end, right? No matter how cool the experiment design is if you fuck up its execution.


This is what happened to us: reviewers had some brilliant suggestions for analyses we hadn’t considered—especially helpful when, as with our brain-atlas project, the idea is to write a paper that’s practically useful to other researchers—and we agreed to run them. Anna has just finished all the statistics, and we’re safe in the knowledge that we’ll definitely get a publication (so long as the reviewers, who get a second look, agree we’ve done what we promised).

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