“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Monday, April 09, 2007

Elegance. What does it mean to you?

Now for something completely different, a word not often heard, and hardly practiced. Elegance. I found this posted by someone somewhere named Sanju. The picture of elegance is Ava Gardner.

Elegance is the attribute of being unusually effective and simple. It is frequently used as a standard of tastefulness, particularly in the areas of visual design and decoration. Elegant things exhibit refined grace and dignified propriety.

Some westerners associate elegance with simplicity and consistency of design, focusing on the main or basic features of an object, its dignified gracefulness, or restrained beauty of style.

Others understand the word in an opulent light as in tasteful richness of design or ornamentation "the sumptuous elegance of the furnishings."

The proof of a mathematical theorem is considered to have mathematical elegance if it is surprisingly simple yet effective and constructive; similarly, a computer program or algorithm is elegant if it uses a small amount of intuitive code to great effect.

In chemistry, chemists always look for elegance as well as utility in synthesis.

Visual stimuli are frequently considered elegant if a small number of colors and stimuli are used, emphasizing the remainder. The color white is often associated with elegance, usually along with blue or black.


  1. The comments on this blog represent the epitome of tasteful elegance.

  2. The current issue of Newsweek is filled with stunningly stupid articles with gems like this:
    "The growing interest in carbon capture also reflects the fact that the climate we have at 380ppm of CO2 is dire enough that even the inevitable 450ppm—perhaps 40 years away—looks scarier than it once did. Hurricane Katrina happened at 380. Glaciers are melting and coral reefs are dying at 380. The 2003 heat wave in Europe, which killed an estimated 35,000 people, happened at 380. The seas are rising at 380."

    Then ONE article by an MIT Climatologist on the side of Reality

  3. March is normally the wettest month of the year in Atlanta -- certainly not this year, though. Even so, state water officials said there have been drier Marches before, and we've made up the rainfall deficit over the summer.

    Through April 3, the state-wide rainfall numbers are daunting.

    In southeast Georgia, Brunswick is over 6 inches below normal rainfall. Atlanta is about 7 3/4 inches behind, and up in extreme northwest Georgia, LaFayette is almost 11 1/4 inches behind where it should be.

    Moderate Drought

  4. "The comments on this blog represent the epitome of tasteful elegance."

    I'm in total agreement.

    A site in harmonic balance with all.

  5. The authors of the report recommend adopting a "mixed portfolio" of adaptation and mitigation efforts to combat the problem. "Certainly adaptation has to be an immediate priority.

    The reason for that is that it is already way too late to take the climate change in the pipeline out of the pipeline," says report coordinating lead author Stephen Schneider, a climatologist at Stanford University. "There are a range of things that we can do that make sense with or without climate change.

    They don't climate-proof you, they reduce your susceptibility."

    Impacts Appearing Around the Globe

  6. Around 2:42 or so

    understanding what he did is like understanding a chemical reaction in 3D

  7. May I submit a scene from John Woo's bullet ballet, Hardboiled?

    Or, as its known in Chinese, "Hot-handed God of Cops" or simply "God of Guns."

    Note the 2:40 s continuous shot. They don't make them like that anymore.

  8. Silicon Valley Future
    BUENOS AIRES (Reuters) - Better known for its rich farming and universities, the central Argentine province of Cordoba is styling itself as the country's own Silicon Valley, and more than 250 technology firms already call it home.

  9. Elegance:
    Substance, Refinement, Grace.

    PC^KILLA: "Fo'shnizzle, bihatch - don't u b gettin yo jizzed-up fingahz over dah bling-bling DEagle. Now pass me mah crack, bihatch!"

    Whored Pistol: "OMG how'd he kill me? I had a Desert Eagle!!"

  10. Ah!

    That pic on the cover says it all!

    Pure elegance!

  11. elegance => refinement, grace, tasteful opulence, breeding, class, exquisiteness, grandeur, sophistication . . . something that i see less and less everyday in my surroundings! i guess i need to open my eyes a little bigger and broaden my horizons!