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Flatland

Thank you for a very enjoyable seminar in NYC.

As you discussed Flatland in the context of both the printed page and your sculpture, I was struck by the similarity of the attempt to help the mind escape the boundaries of the printed page via good design and the struggle of Edwin Abbot's "humble native of Flatland" to escape the literal boundaries of his two-dimensional world.

Is the comparison intentional?

-- susan (email)


See chapter 1, "Escaping Flatland" of my Envisioning Information.

-- Edward Tufte


Princeton University Press published in 1991 a paperback edition of Flatland with an introduction by Thomas Banchoff, who was at that time a professor of mathematics at Brown University. The introduction discusses the relevance of the book to various mathematical and scientific topics (e.g., the physics of curved space, examining 2-dimensional CAT scans or MRI images to understand 3-dimensional bodies) and also includes information on the social satire of the book, the author's background and interests, historical context, and other relevant topics. I found the introduction very helpful in understanding the book. Princeton University Press has a website for direct ordering if you are unable to find the book through other means: www.pupress.princeton.edu.

-- Rebecca Currie (email)


For that matter, there's also The Annotated Flatland, published in 2002 by Perseus Publishing (ISBN: 0738205419), which has introduction and rather copious notes by Ian Stewart -- the book is set in a two-column format, with the inner columns reproducing the original text while the outer columns are devoted to notes; the notes probably comprise at least twice as much text as the original.

-- Brooks Moses (email)


Due out spring 2007: Flatland: The Movie.

-- Bil Kleb (email)


Thank you Bill for the info - I am looking forward to 'Flatland the Movie' as the story plays a pivotal role in my consulting work.

-- Roger Daventry (email)


Here is an escape from Flatland - by Joseph Moxon 1670 -

"Practical perspective; or Perspective made easie. Teaching by the opticks, how to delineate all bodies, buildings, or landskips, &c. By the catoptricks, how to delineate confused appearences, so as when seen in a mirror or pollisht body of any intended shape, the reflection shall shew a designe. By the dioptricks, how to draw parts of many figures into one, when seen through a glass or christal cut into many faces. Usefull for all painters, engravers architects, &c. and all others that are any waies inclined to speculatory ingenuity. By Joseph Moxon hydrographer to the Kings most excellent Majesty. London: printed by Joseph Moxon, and sold at his shop in Russel street, at the signe of Atlas,1670."

Here = http://www.aba.org.uk/moxon.html

Best wishes

Matt


-- Matt R (email)


Transistors Escape Flatland

Silicon wafers historically have been two dimensional. Intel on Wednesday changed all of that with 3-D transistors, dubbed Tri-Gate. The aim: Ensure that Moore's Law, which dictates that transistor density doubles every two years, keeps chugging along. http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/intel-moores-law-has-been-cubed-welcome-to-3-d-transistors/48216?tag=nl.e589

-- Patrick Ripley (email)




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