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24th June 2018
#421
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7
Sure makes more sense than "dancing to architecture".
.
I guess I must have hung around with 'too many' artists along the way -- the phrase 'dancing to architecture' is something I see great potential artistic resonance in.

Maybe that's because I grew up totally not understanding the impulses behind various forms of art-driven dance. It was only in my 20s that academic experiences, several dance-oriented GFs, and other friends helped me begin to understand that dance can be 'about' almost anything. I was always kind of interested, at least aesthetically, in architecture, so I more or less grew up with the idea that it could be 'about' various abstract concepts as well as being addressed to very concrete functions. (Inadvertent pun acknowledged. )

I'm'a cut myself off here, and change my personal topic of the moment and my conversational venue, rather than let my too-fast fingers fly any further down the road of filling up this thread with more personal ramblings...
24th June 2018
#422
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank_Case
Had we originally defined a second to be a minute fraction shorter, then we would have had 440Hz as the naturally occurring fibonacci number for the frequency of A above middle C. So 432 is in part arbitrary when other factors are considered.
I'm not entirely sure you can accurately say that we "defined" a second in a completely arbitrary way as "back in the day" in Sumeria they used the sexagesimal system (not decimal) - i.e. base 60, and they counted how many 60's you could have in one whole rotation of the Earth with respect to the sun. i.e., every sunrise. Everything else is a division or multiple of that. So, 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour and they could fit 24 of those 60 minutes in a day. Exactly.

The sexagesimal system also has 12 factors, one of which is the number 12 (12 months in the year, 12 constellations etc) and it makes dividing time, angles and geographic coordinates far easier than in decimal.

Of course, had we been using the decimal system back then then things would be different. But we didn't for a reason because as if by magic, if you use the sexagesimal system you end up with whole numbers for the measure of time that's 1:1 related to the Earth's rotation with respect to the sun. Good luck doing that in decimal.

It's far from random but a very well considered division.

Oh, and just to add some fuel to this discussion (and then quietly walk away before anyone sees me)... that factor 12 of the sexagesimal system just so happens to divide into 432, 36 times.

---

Note: Edited to please the pedants.
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24th June 2018
#423
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
that's 1:1 related to the Earth's rotation
This is arbitrary, how fast a rock is spinning in space. Thus every time division based on that is also arbitrary.

Of course a very intelligent time division system is set up based on how fast a rock is spinning in space. . . but if step 1 is arbitrary so is everything after it.
24th June 2018
#424
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
This is arbitrary, how fast a rock is spinning in space.
Sorry, I corrected my post. I was referring to the Earth's rotation around the sun.
24th June 2018
#425
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Sorry, I corrected my post. I was referring to the Earth's rotation around the sun.
Still a rock spinning in space at an arbitrary frequency.
24th June 2018
#426
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
This is arbitrary, how fast a rock is spinning in space. Thus every time division based on that is also arbitrary.
Indeed. Not just arbitrary, but subject to change since the speed of the earth's rotation is slowing. Tidal friction is adding 2.3ms to the length of a day every century, and there are other factors that lead to more variation than you might expect from one year to the next.

There's a reason some minutes have 61 seconds in the standard calendar. We had one as recently as the end of 2016.
24th June 2018
#427
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
Still a rock spinning in space.
...and? It's in relation to a how long that rock takes to go around the sun once. whether it's spinning in space or in the stomach of an universe-sized squid is immaterial.
24th June 2018
#428
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
...and? It's in relation to a how long that rock takes to go around the sun once. whether it's spinning in space or in the stomach of an universe-sized squid is immaterial.
And. . . that means any time divisions based on this rock's spinning behaviors are also arbitrary.
24th June 2018
#429
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1
I guess I must have hung around with 'too many' artists along the way -- the phrase 'dancing to architecture' is something I see great potential artistic resonance in.

Maybe that's because I grew up totally not understanding the impulses behind various forms of art-driven dance. It was only in my 20s that academic experiences, several dance-oriented GFs, and other friends helped me begin to understand that dance can be 'about' almost anything. I was always kind of interested, at least aesthetically, in architecture, so I more or less grew up with the idea that it could be 'about' various abstract concepts as well as being addressed to very concrete functions. (Inadvertent pun acknowledged. )

I'm'a cut myself off here, rather than let my too-fast fingers fly any further...
Well, sure (not that "making sense" has really ever gotten in the way of "great potential artistic resonance").

..In fact (in my opinion) the two concepts are best reconciled by architects designing spaces for dancers.
(Form following function.)
.
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24th June 2018
#430
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
And. . . that means any time divisions based on this rock's spinning behaviors are also arbitrary.
'Taint much about tuning that AIN'T arbitrary!
.
24th June 2018
#431
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
And. . . that means any time divisions based on this rock's spinning behaviors are also arbitrary.
Yes of course. I was merely stating its origins and it wasn't just some number that was picked from the sky, but that it was a division based on the Earth's rotation around the sun.
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24th June 2018
#432
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
I'm not entirely sure you can accurately say that we "defined" a second in a completely arbitrary way as "back in the day" in Sumeria they used the sexagesimal system (not decimal) - i.e. base 60, and they counted how many 60's you could have in one whole rotation of the Earth around the sun. Everything else is a division or multiple of that. So, 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour and they could fit 24 of those 60 minutes in a day. Exactly.

The sexagesimal system also has 12 factors, one of which is the number 12 (12 months in the year, 12 constellations etc) and it makes dividing time, angles and geographic coordinates far easier than in decimal.

Of course, had we been using the decimal system back then then things would be different. But we didn't for a reason because as if by magic, if you use the sexagesimal system you end up with whole numbers for the measure of time that's 1:1 related to the Earth's rotation around the sun. Good luck doing that in decimal.

It's far from arbitrary but a very well considered division.

Oh, and just to add some fuel to this discussion (and then quietly walk away before anyone sees me)... that factor 12 of the sexagesimal system just so happens to divide into 432, 36 times.

Now, I don't want to tie markodarko to his words too tightly -- particularly given his post immediately above that I only just now saw -- I think he was trying to make a point about historic origins rather than suggesting 'eternal truths' inherent in the numbers. But here were the thoughts off the top of my head when I read the passage quoted here:

Exactly. LOL

I don't think so. The math may come out 'even' -- but the physical processes it attempts to describe do not.

Right off the top we have the long-established fact that there are NOT an even number of earthly axis rotations (in relation to the sun) in a given orbital rotation around the sun -- that is to say there aren't an even number of days in a year -- no matter WHAT number system one uses.

Another amusing point: the notion there are '12 constellations' -- since a constellation is an arbitrary collection of stars dependent on individual perspective of those doing the defining, that's as arbitrary as arbitrary gets.

To wit: "There are 88 official constellations. But astronomers haven't made up new constellations for hundreds of years! When new stars are discovered, they are considered to be a part of whatever constellation they are closest to." -- How many constellations are there? (Beginner) - Curious About Astronomy? Ask an Astronomer

More on constellations and their role in human history: What are constellations used for? (Intermediate) - Curious About Astronomy? Ask an Astronomer

Last edited by theblue1; 24th June 2018 at 06:06 PM..
24th June 2018
#433
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
[...] it wasn't just some number that was picked from the sky, but that it was a division based on the Earth's rotation around the sun.
Well, I guess that's every bit as valid an arbitrary measurement as would be one based upon the length of the average human foot.
.!
24th June 2018
#434
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7
Well, sure (not that "making sense" has really ever gotten in the way of "great potential artistic resonance").

..In fact (in my opinion) the two concepts are best reconciled by architects designing spaces for dancers.
(Form following function.)
.
I've seen at least one dance where the dancers tore down parts of the set... the other side of that coin, in a sense.

Getting back to making sense: Yeah, I've spent quite a bit of time with surrealism over the years from Dali and Magritte and de Chirico to Bunuel and Fellini... I lean to a loose tether between art and apparent reality, myself.
24th June 2018
#435
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1
Exactly. LOL
Whoa there, sunshine. I'm pretty sure I mentioned in my post that these things happend in Sumeria. I.e., a long time ago, when the constellations were viewed and recorded by eye. What is it @Lady Gaia said...? "Tidal friction is adding 2.3ms to the length of a day every century". So every ONE HUNDRED YEARS, 2.3 thousands of a second get added onto a day.

If you ask me, that's pretty exact (certainly in terms of whole integers) for a civilisation that lived over 5000 years ago. Wouldn't you agree?
24th June 2018
#436
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Whoa there, sunshine. I'm pretty sure I mentioned in my post that these things happend in Sumeria. I.e., a long time ago, when the constellations were viewed and recorded by eye. What is it @Lady Gaia said...? "Tidal friction is adding 2.3ms to the length of a day every century". So every ONE HUNDRED YEARS, 2.3 thousands of a second get added onto a day.

If you ask me, that's pretty exact (certainly in terms of whole integers) for a civilisation that lived over 5000 years ago. Wouldn't you agree?

I amended my post to acknowledge your later post indicating you were more talking about historic origins of the systems you talked about.

For sure, top props to the ancient observers, the proto-astronomers, if you will, who were trying to find order in the cosmos and, specifically the apparent 'movement' of the stars and planets in relation to earthly observers. They were the 'scientists' of their day and their efforts were then built upon by others.

The tenor of my response was based on my apparent misapprehension that you had been holding the ancient Sumerians' observations as some sort of exact numerical analog of heavenly order. I wasn't suggesting their numbers didn't fit together 'neatly' -- rather that those numbers were of questionable accuracy and had a number of arbitrary aspects of their own.

By the way, your use a nonstandard definition of exact may be leading to unnecessary misunderstanding. Exact does not mean almost or even very, very close. It does not mean close enough.

Quote:
exact

-strictly accurate or correct:
-an exact likeness; an exact description.
-precise, as opposed to approximate: the exact sum; the exact date.
-admitting of no deviation, as laws or discipline; strict or rigorous.
Exact | Define Exact at Dictionary.com
24th June 2018
#437
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1
I think he was trying to make a point about historic origins rather than suggesting 'eternal truths' inherent in the numbers.

Exactly.
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24th June 2018
#438
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1
exact

-strictly accurate or correct
And you wouldn't say that a deviation of 2 thousands of a second per day every 100 years is accurate?

Interesting.

I guess we have a different understanding of the word accurate too then.
24th June 2018
#439
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Exactly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Quote:
Originally Posted by theblue1

exact

-strictly accurate or correct
And you wouldn't say that a deviation of 2 thousands of a second per day every 100 years is accurate?

Interesting.

I guess we have a different understanding of the word accurate too then.
Accuracy is relative. When we modify it with strictly it achieves the state of exactness, the way I'm reading the definitions.

Quote:
accuracy

technical
the degree to which the result of a measurement, calculation, or specification conforms to the correct value or a standard.
plural noun: accuracies

That said, I already hung myself out over my own apparent misuse of precise earlier when writing the post in question when I had, for a few moments, included that as what I mistakenly saw as a less exact alternative. (In fact, the dictionaries seem to agree that precise and exact are effectively synonyms, at least in common usage. Go figger. )

I'd say the deviation you cite has a very high degree of accuracy, given the challenges involved in deriving the figures. Whatever the numbers, though, I think those ancient astronomers could be very proud of their efforts in finding order in apparent chaos.
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24th June 2018
#440
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
And you wouldn't say that a deviation of 2 thousands of a second per day every 100 years is accurate?
Accurate to what?
.
25th June 2018
#441
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
they counted how many 60's you could have in one whole rotation of the Earth around the sun.
?? You could have any number of them. It just depends on the rate of your counting (and then you would just adjust the rate to make it even). That would work the same with any number base. So yes, it is arbitrary.
25th June 2018
#442
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Yes of course. I was merely stating its origins and it wasn't just some number that was picked from the sky, but that it was a division based on the Earth's rotation around the sun.
?? That doesn't make any sense. Based on what about the Earth's rotation around the sun?
25th June 2018
#443
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carnalia Barcus
?? That doesn't make any sense. Based on what about the Earth's rotation around the sun?
I think I've stated my point quite clearly. Quoting me out of context is hardly fair. Whether the number is arbitrary in the grand scheme of things is immaterial. I was merely stating why it was chosen and that there was a reason why it was and that it wasn't some random number plucked out of the sky but one borne out of their number system and their beliefs.

Tell ya what, instead of arguing with someone you don't know on a "music" forum, why not do some research into Sumeria, their beliefs, the sexagesimal counting system, and so forth for yourself and come up with your own conclusions?

25th June 2018
#444
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
I'm not entirely sure you can accurately say that we "defined" a second in a completely arbitrary way as "back in the day" in Sumeria they used the sexagesimal system (not decimal) - i.e. base 60, and they counted how many 60's you could have in one whole rotation of the Earth around the sun. Everything else is a division or multiple of that. So, 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour and they could fit 24 of those 60 minutes in a day. Exactly.
You do realise that one rotation of the earth around the sun is a year, not a day?

Quote:
It's far from arbitrary but a very well considered division.
It is absolutely arbitrary. You can take any number and divide things up like that. Ascribing meaning to that is pure numerology (and thus nonsense).

Alistair
25th June 2018
#445
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow
You do realise that one rotation of the earth around the sun is a year, not a day?
Ha ha! Clearly I was referring to the Earth's rotation in respect to the sun - i.e., sunrises.
25th June 2018
#446
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow
It is absolutely arbitrary.
Yes, it is arbitrary, of course. I've amended my post to say "random".

Quote:
Originally Posted by UnderTow
Ascribing meaning to that is pure numerology (and thus nonsense).
Huh? When did I ascribe any meaning to numbers? I was just explaining where the second came from!

Sheez. I give up. You got me. -> Unparticipated.
25th June 2018
#447
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Ha ha! Clearly I was referring to the Earth's rotation in respect to the sun - i.e., sunrises.
That would be a rotation of the earth around it's own axis, not a rotation around the sun.

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
Yes, it is arbitrary, of course. I've amended my post to say "random".
Well I wouldn't call it random. Just arbitrary.

Quote:
Huh? When did I ascribe any meaning to numbers? I was just explaining where the second came from!
I wasn't suggestion you did but many people do. That is misguided.

Alistair
25th June 2018
#448
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by markodarko
I think I've stated my point quite clearly. Quoting me out of context is hardly fair. Whether the number is arbitrary in the grand scheme of things is immaterial. I was merely stating why it was chosen and that there was a reason why it was and that it wasn't some random number plucked out of the sky but one borne out of their number system and their beliefs.

Tell ya what, instead of arguing with someone you don't know on a "music" forum, why not do some research into Sumeria, their beliefs, the sexagesimal counting system, and so forth for yourself and come up with your own conclusions?

I'm not "quoting you out of context"--the context is right there for everyone to see. I'm quoting what I'm specifically commenting on. How in the world could it be difficult to understand that?

The numbers were chosen due to that being the conventional counting system in that culture, sure. There's nothing more to it than that, though.

Aside from that you're completely ignoring the question I asked. You made a bs claim that you can't back up.
25th June 2018
#449
Lives for gear

Quote:
Originally Posted by 12ax7
'Taint much about tuning that AIN'T arbitrary!
.
True that. Especially the first sung note of the day. Talk about arbitrary.
25th June 2018
#450
Gear Guru

Quote:
Originally Posted by newguy1
True that. Especially the first sung note of the day. Talk about arbitrary.
I'm thinking a little non-note-specific rising and falling vocal portamento exercises might help warm up the voice but I admit I never seem to think about it, though I feel certain it would probably be a good idea. And for people like me whose voice range overlaps seem to flux on a daily basis, it might be a good way to get the lay of the land at that moment.

Hell, I might even take up my own suggestion... not that I'm ever gonna be Nat Cole. I'm still struggling with 'Dylanesque.'
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