02 December 2007

In a recent issue of The Atlantic, Andrew Sullivan writes: "It’s November 2008. A young Pakistani Muslim is watching television and sees that this man—Barack Hussein Obama—is the new face of America. In one simple image, America’s soft power has been ratcheted up not a notch, but a logarithm."

I love the image and the sentiment, but come on—"a logarithm?" What does that mean? (It's worse than saying that something represents a "quantum leap"—which, as one of my former roommates never tires of pointing out, is the smallest leap there is...)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I agree with you about the "logarithm". But I thought "quantum leap" referred to the probabilistic interpretation of the wave function. So, a particle that is in one region of space can instantly "leap" to a remote region, with non-zero probability. Or perhaps I was over-interpreting the phrase to make some sense of it.