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Let’s start with a small number, say six prisoners and an equal number of numbered cards and numbered drawers.

Placing the cards in the drawers effectively makes a one-to-one map from the set S = {1, 2, …, n} onto itself1. If that sounds confusing, imagine drawing n nodes and then drawing arrows between them, so that every node has exactly one “outgoing” arrow and one “incoming” arrow (and yes, a number can point to itself and satisfy these rules).

With only six elements, the mapping could look like this:

1 --------> 4      +-> 2 --+
                   |       |
^           |      |       |       5 --+
|           |      |       |           |
+---- 3 <---+      +-- 6 <-+       ^   |
Table 1: A 6-permutation example

So about those three women.


Singularity Girl stopped by for a socially-distanced visit in our garden. I've known her since she was thirteen. Her family had just made it to Canada after surviving the Siege of Sarajevo. She turned up at an audition meeting for a play I was workshopping with teenagers. She wanted to write, not act. Despite her not having gone through the usual process to be part of the writing team, and her young age, I believed…

The radio is stuck on 4/4 pop melodies, and the butcher’s block is strewn with cow that has been bifurcated all the way down. There’s no concatenation for this kine, it is now t-bones, ribeyes, and porterhouses. Various bits of trim are in the bone barrels, and the block manager is wiping his knife clean on one of the hundreds of disposable towels we use for this purpose.

I’m chatting with one of the meat cutters about something really inane. Something to do with the…

News for Noders

August 4: Happy birthday avalyn!

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