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  1. #1
    Doesn't Read Your Posts Haight's Avatar
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    Default Nature is Round, and Humans are Square

    I came across an interesting thought when I was walking my dog through a forest and around a lake yesterday.

    I thought, I don't see anything in nature that is square, either aesthetically or down to the biological structure, if I were to examine them though a microscope. Moreover, after walking back into the housing tracks, I realized that the vast proportion of things that humans construct are square, and would done correctly, they are perfect squares. Then I started thinking about the possible conflict that this creates for us, for our world, and for our environment. However, my lack of understanding within the biological sciences keeps me from reaching a conclusion, or even a decent theory.

    So . . . am I missing something? Am I full of nonsense? Is this a fact that everyone knows except me?

    And most importantly, what are the implications of this situation, if nature produces that which is round, and humans produce things that are square?

  2. #2
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    trees have rings because they grow from the center. water droplets are round because the attraction holds the molecules together. the sun is round for the same reason. nothing man-made "grows" or is a force revolving at such great velocity that it would become round over time. man's creations must be structured and strong, and the most efficient structure is rectangular.

  3. #3
    Guerilla Urbanist Brendan's Avatar
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    I think it points to the inefficiency of humanity as a whole. A bubble is round because circular and spherical objects are the most efficient forms in the universe. They have no weakpoints. Look to old Rome. The domes were a pain in the ass the construct, but will last for a very, very, long time.
    There is no such thing as separation from God.

  4. #4
    Guerilla Urbanist Brendan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cut the grass View Post
    man's creations must be structured and strong, and the most efficient structure is rectangular.
    Rectangles are actually very easy to destroy. Think of a cardboard box. Put a small amount of force on any one side and the systems fails.
    There is no such thing as separation from God.

  5. #5
    Senior Member reason's Avatar
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    Nature does produce square things, they're called humans.

    (note: it also produces other rigid and squarish shapes, like the atomic structure of lead.)
    A criticism that can be brought against everything ought not to be brought against anything.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Littlelostnf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cut the grass View Post
    trees have rings because they grow from the center. water droplets are round because the attraction holds the molecules together. the sun is round for the same reason. nothing man-made "grows" or is a force revolving at such great velocity that it would become round over time. man's creations must be structured and strong, and the most efficient structure is rectangular.
    Most builders would disagree with you. My cousin is building a house in the islands (St. Croix) and alot of people building there are going round.

    http://www.usitoday.com/article_view.asp?ArticleID=1602

    I agree with Haight...I think that many of our structures conflict with our environment...(also mental conflict). I too have no real understanding of the biologicial sciences...but just looking around at nature and the way it constructs itself would give any thinking person a clue that it is a better way of building. I can think of few streamlined and efficient products that are squared off...generally they are rounded.
    for my life is slowed up by thought and the need to understand what I am living.

  7. #7
    Senior Member HilbertSpace's Avatar
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    humani nil a me alienum puto -
    To me, nothing human is foreign
    There are many squares in nature, from inorganic structures like the salt crystal to biological forms ranging from the amorphous but roughly square box jelly, many different species of plankton, and even each and every plant cell.

    More important, though, is the question of whether or not humans themselves (and their creations) are natural phenomena. I am not a dualist - I believe that any attempt to draw a line between people and nature is ultimately wrong.

    Everything we see around us that is the direct or indirect result of an adaptive process - from a plant cell to a condominium - has a form determined, broadly, by two types of forces: utility and constraint. Houses are square because it gives us maximum availability of floor space, for instance, and because it is easier to construct a lot of straight boards than it is to create them with a uniform curve.

    Evolution in biological organisms works with the same forces - that is, natural selection uses the Malthusian aspect of nature to pick and choose on the basis of utility, while constraint is reflected in evolution works with what exists, rather than starting from scratch with each generation.

    Nothing human is foreign to this world. Man is no more or less natural than any other life-form. We alter our environment, as does everything from slime-releasing bacteria to mound-building termites to dam-building beavers.

    What differences exist are differences of ratio - they are rooted in the differences in information content between the neurological and the genetic. All species learn, all species communicate. In higher organisms, Man in particular, the learning can be done in real-time (neural net type learning). In other species, the learning is done in evolutionary time (genetic algorithm type learning). However, the form and the function of learning are identical - again, shaped by a combination of forces of utility and constraint.
    JBS Haldane's Four Stages of Scientific Theories:

    1. This is worthless nonsense.
    2. This is an interesting, but perverse, point of view.
    3. This is true, but quite unimportant.
    4. I always said so.

  8. #8
    mrs disregard's Avatar
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    thanks for the link LLNF. very interesting

  9. #9
    Senior Member hereandnow's Avatar
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    You are discussing nature and HilbertSpace has provided the biological component. In the field of physics we see squares. An interesting thought though.
    INTP 5W6

  10. #10
    Guerilla Urbanist Brendan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nocturne View Post
    (note: it also produces other rigid and squarish shapes, like the atomic structure of lead.)
    That's crystallization, and the atoms are still spherical in structure.
    There is no such thing as separation from God.

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