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2006-10-18 16:49:01 UTC

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I am sure most of you have noticed how convenient the English keyboardRaw Message

becomes when using it to label 26 and 10 dimensional spaces: there is

26 alphabetical characters, and 10 numerical ones.

I feel ready to discard the ten numerical chars as mere coincidence,

but I am not so sure about the alphabetical. Let me to tell you why:

the dimensions of the bosonic string are related to the 24 dimensional

Leech lattice and its 25+1 dimensional companion (of signature

25-1=24-0). On the other hand, the 24 dimensional unimodular lattices,

particularly Leech's, are useful in coding theory, because they build

the densest packings we know. Golay's codes and a whole of

error-correcting industry come from these lattices, and it is only for

a small miss that it can not be claimed that error correction is a

byproduct of string theory... Conway's pals come there before, using

their own branch of unorthodox mathematics.

Now I wonder if the existence of Golay codes or Leech packagings has

been speculated to appear in natural recognition system (say, our

neural networks processing sound) or used to justify the survival of

our alphabetical notation system (3300 years old!). Far fetched, but it

could explain the coincidence on the basis of a common mathematical

structure.

Alejandro