Depending upon what kind of a device you're using, many visitors to this blog will be able to see ten little numbered boxes across the top of this video - clicking on a number will jump you to that part of this movie where that number is discussed. I notice that in some browsers these numbers are covered up by the title of the video which drops down. If you're encountering that problem try going to this direct link to the above video, which is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gg85IH3vghA Enjoy!
Friday, October 26, 2012
Posted by Rob Bryanton at 9:38 PM
Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Today I'm happy to report that the wikipedia entry is back! Thank you to everyone who pointed out to the wikipedia administrator who made the deletion that this was a mistake, and that the point-line-plane postulate is a real thing, an accepted concept from basic geometry. It's interesting to me that one of the arguments put forth by the admin who deleted the entry was that it didn't have any supporting links to other "reliable sources".
I see now that the restored entry has just been flagged for possible deletion because it doesn't include any links to "reliable secondary sources". Several friends sent me a link to an Andrews University online course in basic geometry that lists this postulate:
Does somebody with wikipedia experience have any suggestions on how to keep this entry from being removed again? I helpfully went in yesterday and added the above link but it was almost immediately removed by a bot. I've undone the bot's revision but I expect it will be removed again as I don't have a wikipedia account. This time the admin in question is http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/User:Wcherowi. Unlike the previous administrator who had a music background, Wcherowi does have an interest in math and geometry, so the "notability" arguments this admin has raised today need to be dealt with directly or this entry is most likely doomed once again. Anyone else with supporting links and a wikipedia account who can help out here?
Posted by Rob Bryanton at 8:34 AM
Thursday, October 18, 2012
Over the last few years I've repeatedly referred to something called the "point-line-plane postulate". In a nutshell, this postulate says that you can use the logical relationships we're familiar with from a point (which we can call dimension "x"), a line (dimension "x+1") and a plane (dimension "x+2") as a way to visualize any number of spatial dimensions, simply by taking that "x+2" dimension, conceiving of it in its entirety as a point, and repeating the process.
On October 6, 2012, a wikipedia administrator called "Explicit" deleted the wikipedia article on the point-line-plane postulate. Here's a link to Explicit's page on wikipedia:
As you'll see if you go to the above link, this person describes themselves as an expert on "music-related articles, where I focus on biographies, albums, songs and discographies relating mostly to R&B, hip hop and pop articles." What possible reason, then, could this person have to delete an article about a basic postulate from geometry?
Not sure how long this link will work, but here's the wikipedia page identifying Explicit as the one who removed the entry:
Since there now appears to be no way to view the previous versions of the point-line-plane postulate page, I accept that what Explicit deleted may already be a page which had been recently modified in some offensive or unacceptable way. But to delete an article that has been up on wikipedia for years? I have to wonder if Explicit even bothered to look back at the revision history, to see that this article was long considered by the wikipedia community to be fine. What's going on here, Explicit? I'd love to know.
Update: After publishing this article several friends have sent me this link:
which includes this explanation from Explicit (a music expert) on why they deleted the entry:
there are no reliable sources for this article since it is mathematically incorrect in several ways, as is the You-tube video from which it comes
I have 2 questions for Explicit:
- this is a geometric postulate which has been on wikipedia for at least the last four years, that was when I first stumbled across it. It is referenced on a number of other sites, in what way are you qualified to say this geometry postulate is "mathematically incorrect"?
- this postulate was posted by other experts long before I came across it, for you to say it "comes from my video" is absurd. What's next? Are you going to delete wikipedia entries referring to Everett's Many Worlds Interpretation just because I talk about this concept in my videos?
It seems clear now that someone recently added a link to one of my youtube videos on this wikipedia entry and that's what made Explicit delete this entry. Explicit, if you are truly interested in the dissemination of knowledge, then revert this page back to whatever the previous version was and stop trying to suppress this information. To remove this legitimate entry does a disservice to the wikipedia community as a whole. Shame!
Thanks to Redmonkey who in the comments for this entry sent a link to a typical entry about this postulate, this one from a University website: http://www.andrews.edu/~calkins/math/webtexts/geom01.htm#POST
Posted by Rob Bryanton at 11:16 AM