17 Apr 2011 /

scrambling t-r-u-t-h: rotating letters as a material form of thought

By david link

Link's essay follows his own preoccupation with the roots of combinatory
machine intelligence and cryptology. 'Truth' in this sense relates to an
archaeological approach to algorithms and artifacts that are reliant on
mathematical logic as well as spiritual enlightenment derived from
Arabic/Islamic Science and Philosophy. With fine attention to historical
and technical detail, working through complex symbolic systems, what we
discover is the reliance on non-Western thinking for calculus and other
routines that underpin  contemporary computation. The text asks whether
truth is something that can be encoded and decoded; is it
reducible to recombinatory procedures?

This essay was published in /Variantology 4. On Deep Time Relations of
Arts, Sciences and Technologies in the Arabic-Islamic World/, eds. Siegfried
Zielinski and Eckhard Fürlus (Cologne: König, 2010): 215-­266.

"The secrets of the letters are in the numbers, and the epiphanies of
the numbers are in the letters. The numbers are the realities of above,
belonging to the spiritual entities. The letters belong to the circle of
the material realities and to the becoming." Aḥmad al-Būnī (d. 1225)

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