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i span the plane today. i see the text i don't know. denote as textx. i review the. compose-of page denote {12, 13, 16, 17, …}. no title. compare-to textbook and small. compare-to Calculus: An Introduction and Basics of Number Theory. compare-to and small.

inside i don’t know. no diagram no proof. all the text all contradiction.

derivation i don’t know. the textx !similar text(i, euler3, pyth4, tan8, …) and !similar textbook. no solution. ± tan8 know. tan8 distant days [today – 1, today + 9]. now + 10 i demonstrate textx to tan8 and together derive the solution.


   i see textx on plane now – 1.

i review and review. majority text contradiction. the small proportion real.

H0 = textx old textbook incomplete. full working gone. possible. no proof no contradiction.
H1 = textx new text. i don’t know. no reference. i don’t know.

i know tan8 can demonstrate solution.


   i see textx on plane now – 4.

i review plane. empty plane no solution.

i don’t know.


   i see textx on plane now – 8.

axiom: ∀ text ∃ author.
proposition: textx !in Σtextbook + Σtext(i, euler3, pyth4, tan8, …).
distant author !within {i, euler3, pyth4, tan8, …}.

distant and unknown. possible and !possible. i don’t know.

i review plane and all elements. i review {sky, plane, wind} and !see tan8. i hurt. i don’t know.


   i see textx on plane now – 10.

PROF INTEGRAL ELEMENT IN TEXTX.

prof integral = index of {i, euler3, tan8, …}. ∴ textx contain i. no working no proof of method. possible and !possible. i don’t know. tan8 !here to derive.

empty plane and wind. i !sleep. empty place. all contradiction. cold wind.


   i see textx on plane now – 13.

i review and review and review. tan8 here now – 1 and i !demonstrate textx. i distant from tan8 and i distant from {euler3, pyth4, …}. i don't know.

i know textx. {euler3, pyth4, tan8, …} don’t know textx. peer review result i don’t know. possible good possible bad. no result and i remain unknown variable. no proof no contradiction. i know textx and don’t demonstrate.


   i see textx on plane now – 25.

i know textx new textbook. tan8 don’t know and i know. only i know.

see textx below for proof:


It is always instructive to consider the work of the Professors who have come before us.

Throughout his career, Professor Kilnar has provided us a rigorous education on certain illiterate and sub-literate tribes that have been discovered across the great expanses of the Inland Desert. Each one is unique in ways that take us all aback with wonder at the variety of Mankind. For instance, who could forget the southern tribe of Groom, who cling to their cliff-face near a freshwater spring, and who, on those rare days when the dust is cleared and sea is visible in the far distance, use their blood-red soil to paint themselves with endless motifs of crosses and flowers? Or the nomadic collectives that surround the Valley of Fortitude, making their ‘Forever Tour’ by performing a jangling cacophony on their contraptions of wood, steel wire, and animal skin?

Despite the physical commonalities between them and ourselves, it is hard to feel truly a brother/sister to these people, since they lack the most sacred of all things: writing. A compassionate attitude towards Mankind's variations is all well and good, but this author cannot be the only one who is slightly repulsed by the idea of a life lived in illiteracy. (One cannot completely dismiss these as thoughtless peoples, though — even the author, on a post-doctoral excursion to see the Forever Tour, found some of the noises quite affecting.)

Even after such an illustrious career, the good Professor Kilnar tirelessly continues his work. A new report, appearing in this very edition of the Journal, details his ongoing observations of the tribe of Blair. In their basin — known to them as Wyvenho, and worshipped as the remnant of an ancient body of pure drinkable water that once stretched further than the eye could believe — they continue to provide fascinating testament to their ancestors’ occupations and preoccupations. Their dance-plays have been studiously observed from afar, and their rock art tirelessly reproduced for our edification. Both of their primitive art forms display their devotion to hulking metal objects, which they believe once traversed the land at great speeds under the power of some invisible animus. (One can easily imagine how a simplistic mind could be excited by the thought of a roaring, uncontainable force made servant to one man; if only such a thing could be more than fantasy!)

Indeed, Professor Kilnar is perhaps our greatest chroniclers of the base, barely-human remnants of Mankind that are scattered about the southern regions, those savage lands where paper and ink were lost when the rain died out. Through these backwards tribes we discover the fabric of Mankind, and for that we are forever indebted to the Professor — I am certain that future generations will remember and esteem him as an equal to Emeritus Professor Kant, for his services to us all.

But, as we all know, the ladder of cultural evolution (or rather, of dis-devolution) has been documented by many hands over many years. This author's personal interest lies in the least-known, the fringe specimens. In this vein we could make note of the oddity that is the Cult of Number, which was discovered only recently by Professor Shaz in the coastal plains of Herbert. Their people still retain a rudimentary written language, which they insist on writing with small white sticks upon blackish-green surfaces. Professor Shaz and her colleagues made a series of daring night-time incursions into the centre of this society, a place of huge concrete structures overgrown with noxious vines. One can imagine their fear and trembling when passing through the stone gates under cover of night, where black letters forged of steel proclaim the name, or perhaps the sacred mantra, of this foreign clan’s meeting place: ‘UNVERSITY JC MAKES OO’. (Presumably the final two letters are intended to resemble their much-used symbol '', the meaning of which is as-yet obscure.)

The Cult of Number is an oddity because it is the middle child in the Descent of Mankind — its followers have retained a bastard form of writing, a strange pidgin that combines recognisable language with a set of symbols taken from their revered texts (or ‘textbooks’, as they call them). These symbols seem to represent an interrelated set of abstract concepts which, at one point, their ancestors would spend large parts of their lives (mostly in their prime years of youth) writing out in variations and permutations that, one must presume, held a great deal of significance in their imaginations. The Cult refers to this system of ideas as their ‘Mathomatix’. The most revered practitioner of this opaque art is known to them as ‘Prof Integral’, and crude statues of him can be found all around their ‘Campos’.

Yes, it is always fascinating to observe how a culture — if such a term can be applied to a clan of semi-idiots — will be influenced by the long-dead ancestors that founded it. The cultural practices of performance, art, and social stratification will find its way into the modern world, filtered and transmogrified by the entropy of time. Most tribes have their sacred ancient objects; take for instance the vestments and rusted slaughtering-knives of Groom, or the man-sized ‘Speaking Boxes’ of the Valley peoples. The Number Cult has their textbooks, the Wyvenho tribe takes great pains to polish and grease the interlocking gears that they believe are the last remnants of their ancestors’ machines. The Founder Effect rules every one of these scattered colonies, whether or not they can conceive of such a lofty concept.

And so, with all of the above in mind, I would like to proudly present a wholly new discovery, here in these few pages. It is the discovery, made by this author and a dedicated team of fellow Professors, of a formerly unknown tribe in the northern stretches. This tribe is unique in their retention of the one faculty that generations of Professors have thought to be ours alone, separating us from the base peoples I have mentioned above: the use of a fully realised written language. Not the semi-nonsense jargon of the University JC, but a language that we could imagine comes close to equalling our own.

This will only be a preliminary report, since the author and team are still hard at work analysing and compiling the great many documents, artefacts, and field notes that were collected during the northern expedition. In the upcoming months and years we will be publishing the full details of our findings, but here we would like to begin with a brief outline of our travels and the strange people we observed in that far-off place.

We set out on a clear day, when all Mankind was open to us. We all felt quite deeply that our journey would be fruitful, with that very same rush of excitement that every young post-doc feels when he/she ventures forth to make his/her first field reports. We all were experienced Professors in our own rights, with dozens of publications each, but I can speak for us all when I say that we felt something different about this expedition. It rekindled the thrill of Mankind’s discovery in all our hearts. Just so, we all set out as one.

As our troupe climbed from the Cavemouth into the biting glare of the sun, Professor Bjelke (my dear wife) stayed by our side as long as she could bear. She carried Bachelor Nelsan, our newborn son, to the very edge of the plateau, and only there did she finally set herself down and let us pass out of her sight. I felt an odd mixture of pain and hope as I left her behind. But I will always owe her the deepest thanks — when we returned many moons later, she took us back into the fold of the library and her daily readings as if we had never left. She washed us in the Marco Polo spring and she read to me as I rested my sun-burned eyes. The Faculty may never appreciate her for all she is worth, though I hope she knows that I do. She is


textx goes all dirt and empty.

page [14, 15] unknown. gone.


leaving us exhausted and dispirited. We had all known that the journey would be taxing, but perhaps we had not felt the truth of this until we experienced it — when one has let too many wind-seasons pass by in the library, it is not easy to remember how the days of trekking stretch on and on. How the infinite view of brown-red dust can deaden one’s hope, how the pursuit of Mankind can begin to shrivel up in the heat, how midday seems infinite, and how thirst can truly terrify.

I think we were all reminded of Emeritus Professor U.L. Guin, and her chronicle of Genly Ai. As the sun and wind beat us from all sides, as we wrapped shrouds of cloth over our drysuits to protect them from blasts of sand, we felt righteous as we remembered Genly’s great trek across the Gobrin Ice. We longed for cold and ice, for the colder land of ages ago! When one is tramping through dust in a suit that sloshes with sweat, stifled by a water-tight mask, it is only natural to imagine the ancient days, when the ground was made of solid water and the effort of pulling one’s cargo could bring a pleasing warmth in the cold of Winter. We all wished that Winter could still visit our lands.

Professor Spudley acted as our Lieutenant of the Maps, and an admirable job he did. (That is, until he went fever-mad on the return journey, forcing us to drain and bury him — Mankind rest.) He led us on a northward path, keeping the Bruce A1 barely visible in the distance to our right. Twice we thought we saw a caravan of figures — the nomads of Flynn, perhaps — crawling along that shimmering black river, but we simply stopped in the shade of a boulder and waited for them to pass. We did not interact, I can assure you!

Once in a while (perhaps two, perhaps six days apart) we would come across something horribly foreign to us all — a leaning tower of white bone, curling and twisting like a mis-made child. I must confess that at first sight of one such, I dropped to my knees in fear, fear of what I thought was a horrible omen from Mankind! But Professor Parka just laughed and informed me about these long-dead ancestors of the prickly pear, known as Trees. They were frightful indeed, yet also majestic. From then on, whenever we found a Tree we would all sit in a row to catch its shade, resting and listening to one of Professor Parka’s lectures, where he would describe to us the endless Forrests of shade that were once made by these creatures.

Apart from these occasional moments of wonder, the days were long and mostly empty. At every new sunrise we scratched a mark into our boot-heels and continued our dreary walk. The days melded into one, and our eyes were burned by the undulating waves of baked earth. Mishaps halted us at every opportunity — broken respirators, feral cats, holes wearing through our suits. Professor Spudley summed it up the best, I think. As we climbed a rocky hill he misplaced his foot and fell four Heights off a ledge, landing in a bed of gravel and breaking one arm. We scrambled down to help him, and as he tore his mask away in anger I will never forget his face. This stern Professor who had barely said a word since leaving Cavemouth spat a mouthful of blood upon himself and yelled out, ‘Getting jolly well sick of this fun!’ In so few words he had expressed what we all felt — we were sick of sweat, sick of raw goanna meat, sick of aching bones. We missed our libraries. I missed my wife.

So imagine our relief when finally saw the mountain over the blank orange horizon! Several times I had felt myself beginning to doubt the ancient maps of the AEC, and I had resented Professor Spudley’s faith, his steadfast confidence that Mankind would be delivered to us one day soon — always tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow. But he was proven right once again, and in quiet moments I made my penance to Mankind for letting my faith waver.

The mountain itself was instantly recognisable — it rose above the plan like a proud Vice Chancellor, and at its top we could see a fringe of green such as most of us had only ever seen in mangrove thickets by the sea. We were elated, exalted, reanimated! Some of the younger Professors were caught by the urge to run forwards and meet that beautiful mountain, but quickly we all took hold of ourselves. We remembered our duty to only observe, dispassionate and unnoticed. We climbed the steeper side of the mountain where no tracks were worn, and from the rim of the bowl we were awestruck by what we saw: a lush grove of Trees that even Professor Parka could barely believe. Far below in the centre of the bowl, we immediately spied the dark brown people we had come to find. They were moving about, in and out of their loose huts made of branches and dry leaves, always surrounded by high green grasses. They looked absolutely carefree. We stood and we gaped.

Over three half-moons we learned a great deal about the culture and mindset of that tribe. We learned how their conception of the universe places their mountain-top basin at the centre of all existence, and when one stands on their slopes and surveys the sunburned plains it is easy to understand why. Up there a Professor could forget everything that exists beyond the horizon, and give in to the feeling that he/she is standing at the birthplace of the sky. Their basin of green is entrancing, and all the more so because everything that surrounds it seems anathema to life.

I believe Professor Parka plans to publish an article on the formation of this mountain, with its rather unusual bowl. He has told me about his theory, in which flows of melted rock would burst up from underground ages ago, and the bowl is the remnant of a pore that leads deep down to where that melted rock swirls endlessly. As fantastical as his theory is, what we have found harder still to explain is the existence of rain — yes, rain! — which fell atop that mountain a total of eight times while we were stationed there. Professor McVeigh is developing a theory involving flows of air that arise from the far-off sea, and which press up against this mountain to cause a sudden condensation of water out of the thin vapours which we cannot see. I eagerly await the publication of both these theories, as I am sure my readers also do.

We camped amongst the rocks on the far side of the mountain, taking shade in their crevices during the long hot days. We would station a pair of Professors at the edge of the bowl on strict rotations, and from there they would lie motionless throughout the day, using the spying-glasses to learn the habits of those brown people. At night we organised small parties to go down into the shamble of thatched huts that the mountain people made, to retrieve artefacts of their existence. Our top priority was their writings, of which we retrieved many. They were scrawled with charcoal upon strips of bark that were tied together in bundles — by happenstance we gleaned that one of these bundles is called a ‘Pome’. Here is a representative example, displaying their feelings towards their exceptional mountain:

There’s no place like my home,
I sleep and it holds me,
Clo ser to the high sky,
I reach up and touch blue,
Life on ly lives at home,
Death drags his feet down there.

As one see from in these Pomes, the number six is quite significant to this tribe. We observed that there were always six sides to their huts, they would swap duties with one another every six days, they never were seen to congregate in groups of more than six people. (All this will be given more detail in an upcoming publication.) Similarly, each Pome consists of six strips of bark, with six syllables etched on each one. The strips appear to have no strict order, so for this account I have added a little punctuation and put them into what order seems most fitting to my own eyes.

The earth can nev er end,
But ev ry thing else does,
I saw my fa ther end,
My mu ther ends today,
I know that I will too,
And it makes me ha py.

We did find a small number of texts that did not adhere to this rule of six. Some were clearly made by young Bachelors: run-on sentences drawn in large misshapen letters upon large sheets of bark, with childish drawings too. Some others were more likely the work of excited Masters who were still experimenting with the boundaries of their native scripts — some of their texts were formed in rows of five or seven syllables (how mischievous!). Despite these exceptions, though, the overwhelming majority of texts our team recovered were very strictly adherent to the rule of sixes, and one got the impression that once they had matured to the age of Professorship, the people of this culture had lost any way of even thinking outside


page [19, 22] gone. i don't know.


to close this report. From the cold southern mountains to the pits of Adani, we now know of many tribes that have found a home in some small corner of the Earth. One must conclude that wherever water bubbles up from the rocks or crackles down from the sky, Mankind will remain. However, when this author found himself standing on the rim of that bowl of greenery, further from his home and library than he had ever been in his long life, he couldn't help but think that these backwards people were the luckiest of all. They were untroubled by the outside world. They knew and loved every being they had ever encountered. Their home was like a benevolent friend to them, a haven of life amidst a universe of emptiness. They had rain. And most importantly of all, they wrote their Pomes, which I am absolutely certain are as precious to them as any library would be. I am lucky to have observed these people, for they have reminded me — me, an ageing professor with a faith that wavers — of why Mankind is so sacred.

The spirit of Mankind is ours to discover, and it seems that our cousins from the mountain bowl have an inkling of this truth as well:

The sun watch es us all,
Wind moves the sands a round,
Does the wind move us too,
Or pee ple far away,
More pee ple not the same,
Be yond where the sun goes?

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