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About Us

It is fairly common for sites to have an About Us section. Saying who you are and what you do is basic politeness in any conversation. Trust and credibility are major issues on the Web. Explaining who you are and where you come from does matter and we make the following promises to our audience: We'll provide you with accurate, engaging content. Like a friendly neighbor, we'll give you information that you can trust. We won't make you dig through a haystack to find the needle.

We'll make it easy to learn the basics of the topic we cover and we won't confuse you with unnecessary jargon. Our content is succinct, digestible, and entertaining. So many About Us pages are a waste of HTML. Though not everyone wants to know more about you, there are those who do. This page will tell you everything you ever wanted to know (and some things you don't) about us! Pay attention, we'll be giving a quiz!

Starting in 1996 I gleaned the web, newspaper articles, magazines, pictures, etc. which I wanted to keep and along with some original content and some things I'm interested in and I hope you are too posted them. I come from Missouri originally and operated this site from Oklahoma now Texas. I have a construction background, but since a stroke I do this Web Site. The Contact Us and The Small Print are located on the contact page.

Its an Enigma started as part of "What? Strange? Peculiar? Maybe." and I gave them their own directory in 2006. An enigma refers to a perplexing text that is often ambiguous and at times inexplicable, something like a puzzle or riddle. An enigma remains a mystery as the paradox is often difficult to understand. An enigma may involve a puzzle, picture or a question that contains a hidden meaning. It can also refer to a puzzling situation or occurrence that is largely inexplicable. Enigma is also used with reference to a person who exhibits contradictory characteristics and is often puzzling to the others. Enigmas may be used as a test for judging the mental prowess of candidates before recruiting them in a company.

The word enigma originates from the Latin aenig meaning ‘riddle’ and Greek ainig, ainissesthai, which means to speak in riddles and from ainos which means fable or story.Since enigma involved something puzzling and difficult to understand, the name was used for a coding machine used during the Second World War. The codes generated by the enigma machine were extremely complex and could be solved by referring to the code book. There are many intellectuals who are tuned to speak in riddles and can be rightly termed as enigmatic.

An enigma is a difficult problem that cannot be easily understood or explained. It specifically refers to a kind of riddle that is expressed in allegorical language and hence demands deep thinking and a degree of ingenuity to arrive at a solution. In general, the word enigma is used to refer to any situation that involves a puzzle or mystery and hence not easily understood. Secrets, perplexities, ambiguities and conundrums all involve complexities which can be rightly termed as enigma. Man’s innate sense of intellect and curiosity draws him naturally to enigmas and he devises ways and means to arrive at a solution. The intellectuals find it stimulating to solve the various enigmas in the field of Science, Mathematics and Literature.

What does ‘blue’ look like? If the question sounds nonsensical, it is because it is one which defies any kind of meaningful answer. In physics, color is defined based on the wavelengths of light reflected off an object, but this explanation fails to describe the subjective sensation of sight. One does not need even the most rudimentary physics education to recognize and differentiate between colors as they are encountered. Light from the sky enters the eye, and is then processed by the brain in milliseconds to produce an experience of ‘blue’ – one that may be unique to each of us.

Scientists label these sensory-based subjective experiences, such as sight or hearing, as qualia (singular, quale). Almost by definition, it is impossible to know if one person’s qualia are the same, similar to, or completely different from those of the person standing next to him. Who is to say that my ‘blue’ might not be your ‘green’, or vice versa? Or that our sensations of ‘sweetness’ might not differ entirely?

At first blush, one may counter by noting that we can all mostly agree on what color is which, what is a pleasant sound, and what is bitter or spicy. Indeed, that is so – but all that this requires to be true is that each of us is consistent in our own experience. From the time we are born we are educated that ‘this’ is green, ‘that’ is birdsong, and so on. How each of us perceives our qualia in our private, internal worlds is inscrutable and unknowable to anyone but ourselves.

What is the perfect system of government? For as long as human civilization has existed, government has been necessary for the maintenance of civil order and organized distribution of resources. Every civilization has developed its own codes of law and society. However, history stands testament to the fact that the ideal system of government has never been realized.

Philosophical rumination on the ideal society has a long history. Among the most famous examples of this are works such as Plato’s The Republic and Thomas Moore’s Utopia, the latter of which has been co-opted into modern English as the very definition of a perfect state. While visionary for their time, however, neither society portrayed by these authors would be viewed as ideal in this day and age. For example, both employed slavery or indentured servitude in the workings of commerce, which would not be compatible with modern liberal sensitivities. Plato’s republic was also based on population sizes which would be considered rural today (generally accepted to be under ten thousand). This goes to show both that great thinkers have failed to solve the question to hand, and also that shifting cultural mores over time may render any given system obsolete over time.

In the last century, fascism and communism have been widely reviled in liberal nations for their oppressive implementation and economic repression. Certainly, there is much wrong with these systems. That stated, while it has become largely taboo in the West to speak out against democracy in any capacity, it must be said that it is not by any means a perfect system. Allowing open voting to all citizens is certainly the most egalitarian approach possible; however, by permitting citizens to cast a vote on issues on which they may be entirely ignorant, the decision making process cannot be optimal. Further, this leads to a corruption of the election process. Often a charming candidate can win office on charisma alone, with a majority of voters incapable of or unwilling to consider the actual issues under debate.

Of course, the fact that democracy is partially lacking is entirely the point of this entry. As stated by Winston Churchill in a 1947 House of Commons address: ‘Many forms of Government have been tried and will be tried in this world of sin and woe. No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all-wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.’

What does ET look like? If there is sentient life out there in the stars – and based on the sheer size of the cosmos, it is at least a real possibility – what does it look like? I would contend that it is impossible for us to truly envision what an alien race would look and act like, as it is entirely out of our scope of experience. All life on Earth is practically identical when compared to the vast range of life allowed by the laws of biology and chemistry. Most vertebrates, for example, share the majority of functional organs and morphology (head, torso, eyes, legs, heart, lungs and so on). Even plant life and animal life is surprisingly similar – many readers will have heard the factoid that humans share 50% or more of their DNA with carrots and bananas.

Looking to entertainment media for film and TV makers’ visions of aliens, a strong bias towards anthropomorphisation of aliens is evident. While budget is doubtless a factor in earlier science fiction shows (such as the original Star Trek series), the trend continues to the modern day even where directors have much larger budgets and CGI at their disposal (a prominent recent example would be James Cameron’s Avatar). Even where aliens are presented as exotic and frightening (Predator, Alien), the creatures in question share many features in common with terrestrial insects or other predatory species.

While some portrayals of alien life are certainly more imaginative than others, at the end of the day even our most creative storywriters have only their experiences to draw on in describing new worlds. If and when first contact with ET is finally made, it is uncertain that we will even be able to recognize a totally alien life form, let alone communicate with it. Whatever one’s thoughts on the topic, it is a safe wager that ET will turn out to be much more exotic than anybody could have imagined.

What is evil? At first glance this question might seem out of place. After all, as humans we all have an intuitive gut feeling for good and evil. However, once you begin to analyze more deeply, the threads of logic begin to unfurl.

The most conservative definition of ‘evil’ would be ‘to willingly and habitually inflict pain and harm on others, for no necessary reward other than their suffering.’ This definition would fit the common perception of the Christian devil, so would appear to be appropriate. However, by this narrow definition some of history’s greatest villains would not be classed as evil. Adolf Hitler, for example, encouraged and organized the persecution of Jews with no regard to their human dignity. However, their torture was not its own goal; his goals were forward-looking and based on a misguided notion of racial purity and patriotism. Certainly he would not have considered himself to be evil.

Would we be happy then with relieving Hitler of his ‘evil’ status? I am sure most readers would emphatically say no. In that case, how do we widen the definition of evil to encompass people such as him? ‘To pursue one’s goals with no regard to the welfare or dignity of others’? Not quite – Hitler doubtless had due concern for the happiness of those German citizens he chose to recognize. So then, ‘to willingly hurt innocent parties in the pursuit of a goal?’ Once the definition has been widened this far, many upstanding military commanders who were heroes of their nations become suspect.

Without going further down the rabbit hole here, I hope the above serves to show that evil can likely never be satisfactorily defined. We know that people like Hitler are evil – we just do – but attempting to explain that conviction leads to confusion.

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