The Marginalian
The Marginalian

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A General Theory of Possibility: The Abstract Art of Otherwise and the Physics of Resilience
A General Theory of Possibility: The Abstract Art of Otherwise and the Physics of Resilience

“As always happens with contradictions, something in the assumptions has to give… Declaring something impossible leads to more things being possible.”

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September 28, 1951: Alan Turing, the World’s First Digital Music, and the Poetry of Possibility
September 28, 1951: Alan Turing, the World’s First Digital Music, and the Poetry of Possibility

A hoot, a hummingbird, and an electronic hymn for the modern world.

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Einstein’s Dreams: Physicist Alan Lightman’s Poetic Exploration of Time and the Antidote to Our Existential Anxiety
Einstein’s Dreams: Physicist Alan Lightman’s Poetic Exploration of Time and the Antidote to Our Existential Anxiety

“A life in the past cannot be shared with the present. Each person who gets stuck in time gets stuck alone.”

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Trees, Whales, and Our Digital Future: George Dyson on Nature, Human Nature, and the Relationship Between Our Minds and Our Machines
Trees, Whales, and Our Digital Future: George Dyson on Nature, Human Nature, and the Relationship Between Our Minds and Our Machines

“Nature’s answer to those who seek to control nature through programmable machines is to allow us to build systems whose nature is beyond programmable control.”

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Tree Islands and Networked Resilience: Biomimicry Pioneer Janine Benyus on the Power of Reciprocity in Nature and Our Human Future
Tree Islands and Networked Resilience: Biomimicry Pioneer Janine Benyus on the Power of Reciprocity in Nature and Our Human Future

“The more stressful the environment, the more likely you are to see plants working together to ensure mutual survival.”

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Funeral March for the First Cosmonaut: Artist, Poet, and Philosopher Etel Adnan’s Stunning Painted Poem About Life, Death, Loneliness, and Our Cosmic Redemption
Funeral March for the First Cosmonaut: Artist, Poet, and Philosopher Etel Adnan’s Stunning Painted Poem About Life, Death, Loneliness, and Our Cosmic Redemption

“In the beginning was the white page. In the beginning was the Sufi in orbit… In the beginning was color. In the beginning was music.”

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The Gifted Listener: Composer Aaron Copland on Honing Your Talent for Listening to Music
The Gifted Listener: Composer Aaron Copland on Honing Your Talent for Listening to Music

“There are few pleasures in art greater than the secure sense that one can recognize beauty when one comes upon it… Recognizing the beautiful in an abstract art like music partakes somewhat of a minor miracle.”

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Music and the Mystery of Aliveness
Music and the Mystery of Aliveness

“We are a music-making species — always have been, always will be — and music’s capacity to explore, express and address what it is to be human remains one of our greatest communal gifts.”

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José Ortega y Gasset on the True Meaning and Measure of Intelligence
José Ortega y Gasset on the True Meaning and Measure of Intelligence

“Intelligence asserts itself above all not in art, nor in science, but in intuition of life.”

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The Creative Urge: John Coltrane on Perseverance Against Rejection, the Innovator’s Mindset, and How Hardship Fuels Art
The Creative Urge: John Coltrane on Perseverance Against Rejection, the Innovator’s Mindset, and How Hardship Fuels Art

“Innovators always seek to revitalize, extend and reconstruct the status quo in their given fields… Quite often they are the rejects, outcasts, sub-citizens, etc. of the very societies to which they bring so much sustenance.”

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