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Author Topic: Lambda Dance
Mandos
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 888

posted 24 March 2003 11:30 AM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
For those of you who even know what beta-reduction is:

http://lambdadance.spacebar.org/

Cute Yes, I am a geek, I am a geek...


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
paxamillion
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2836

posted 24 March 2003 12:04 PM      Profile for paxamillion   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Uh, yeah.
From: the process of recovery | Registered: Jul 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 24 March 2003 01:30 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
You know, I'm sitting here giggling over this because I absolutely, COMPLETELY don't get it. I mean, I don't even have the foggiest clue what that's supposed to mean. But I can also tell that if I were in the know, that would be pretty damn funny.

So here I sit, giggling uncontrollably, thinking, that must be the geekiest in-joke I've seen in ages, and darn I wish I understood that because I'll bet it's pretty funny.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
swallow
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2659

posted 24 March 2003 01:40 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
A different sort of dancing lambda
From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mandos
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 888

posted 24 March 2003 05:12 PM      Profile for Mandos   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
It's a logic geek joke (ie, geeks who've never studied higher-order logic or never programmed in Lisp or some other functional programming variant wouldn't get it either--and that's a lot of geeks).

Lambda is a logical abstraction operator. Basically, you use lambda to generalize a statement over some variable. Then you can apply the statement to some object in order to evaluate its validity. Or you can quantify the variable and evaluate it that way.

Example: Suppose I have a plain statement like "I like green food if the food is sweet." I can perform a lambda-abstraction like this:

X = (lambda x.I like green x if x is sweet)

Then I can apply X to some object. Like
X(keyboards) = (I like green keyboards if keyboards are sweet). (Usually, we use symbols, but for the example there's no reason why we shouldn't use English sentences.)

This is called a beta-reduction (I think--I sometimes get them confused with alpha-reductions...). Anyway, you can abstract over multiple variables as well. This has zillions of uses, including being (by Alonzo Church's unprovable hypothesis) a complete model of computation equivalent to a Turing Machine or the PC on your desk. It also allows us to discuss the relationship between statements and meanings in a very flexible way, especially if you throw in a bit of model theory...


From: There, there. | Registered: Jun 2001  |  IP: Logged
Mr. Magoo
guilty-pleasure
Babbler # 3469

posted 24 March 2003 05:24 PM      Profile for Mr. Magoo   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
Thanks swallow. I opened your link just as someone walked into my office. I'm probably grist for the gossip mill now...
From: `,_,`,_,,_,, | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 490

posted 24 March 2003 05:25 PM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
The only things I know about lambda are threefold:

1. Wavelength

2. It is the variable used to derive eigenvalues and eigenvectors.

3. It is used to set-up Lagrange multiplier optimization problems.


From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Willowdale Wizard
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3674

posted 24 March 2003 05:28 PM      Profile for Willowdale Wizard   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
damn. now i've got men without hats and "the safety dance" in my head. we can lambda dance if we want to, we can leave your friends behind.
From: england (hometown of toronto) | Registered: Jan 2003  |  IP: Logged
skdadl
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 478

posted 24 March 2003 05:32 PM      Profile for skdadl     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post  Reply With Quote 
If you go to Prom Night 2003 on swallow's link, you will see a baby who can really jive!

And Mandos, guy ... thanks so much. I really needed this.


From: gone | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

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