The Zen of Model Helicopter Flying


Model helicopter flying is just like flying an actual helicopter
in most respects. All the controls are same and they have the
same effects. The helicopter is usually facing away from the
operator so that the controls are the same as if they were
flying the real thing.

Additionally, like the economy, the controls are not completely
orthogonal and one parametric action will lead to side effects.
The pushing of the stick forward sends the helicopter forward
but it also reduces lift, and also the engine torque combined
with the forward motion, causes a banking. So simply pushing the
stick forward must be compensated for by other actions as well.

Also, like the economy, unpredictable gusts of wind, can cause
the whole helicopter to suddenly spin about its mainshaft and
the operator of the model may not react fast enough; that is,
the action that they take to compensate will not arrive at the
helicopter "at the right time" and when that action does finally
get there, it is totally out of context. This can send the helicopter
into a wild feedback loop and result in an operator-model chaotic
action like the that famous galloping bridge which was caught in
the wind's own resonant pattern.

But as well, and this is much more profound, the helicopter
at some point may become completely reversed in its orientation
with respect to the operator. In such a case, many of the controls
are either "partially" or completely reversed. If the operator
cannot subjectively make that reversal as well, all its
actions will be inappropo and even life threatening (pushing
the stick forward will not send helicopter away but instead
may send it careening towards the operator like a flying circular
saw). If that chaotic action leads to a crash, the engine tends to
keep running and when the blades hit dirt, the helicopter
thrashes around like a chicken with its head chopped off,
and procedes to chew itself up to smithereens.

The non-orthogonality and sometimes either complete or partial
complementarity of the controls is a very fundamental aspect
of the mind-body problem (or operator-model problem), and
can be shown in not only in quantum theory but as even more
fundamental to all information, control and communications systems[1].

Last night on the news, some economist (right or wrong as it may be) 
exclaimed that he thought the recent interest rate adjustment by the fed
was "180 backwards" and this often the case in economics that
the action is either 180 (or less) out of phase with the needed
compensational action or control.

Flying or hovering a model helicopter is very, very hard; much
more difficult than flying model planes. And crashes are either
fatal (no one has been killed by one yet but many model helicopters
have been "totalled") or very expensive with each minor crash carrying
a medical bill of upwards of $200.

So, many would-be flyers give up quickly, and those who do master
control enough, develop a very strong passion for the sport.
The great Curtis Youngblood can hover a model helicopter
upside-down facing him (with the controls all reversed) and
kiss it on the cowling (but to my knowledge he has never
attempted to fly two (quantum entangled) helicopters at the
same time.

Model helicopter flying exercises an aspect of the brain that
most people don't use very often, and so when you are doing
something as apparently simple as just hovering, the un-accustomed
brain actually enters into a trance-like state where instinct is
battling to win over rationalization (like when we first learned
to ride a bicycle or drive a car; after which, we don't have
to think about it much) 

Many people who cannot afford the expense of model helicopter
crashes, opt instead for simulations. A model helicopter simulator
costs alittle over $100. But, while the simulation can be very
close to what reality is like, it doesn't foster learning about
flying the real models but fosters instead learning about
flying the simulated models.

That leads the student into bad habits if the simulator is
all that they fly because they tend to learn not from the
expenses and dangers of reality or real flying but learn
a more sloppy and disrespectful form of virtual flying.

In this day and age of Pokemon and virtual games, we are
raising Columbine "tlr yth", with more respect for virtual
simulated ideas than for real and tangible consequences.
Virtual pets do not teach children the deeper respect needed
in raising  real pets. (Compare this for instance with the
biblical prophesy regarding evil and the media)

Like the Zen master who hits his meditating students on the
shoulder with stick to remind them that reality is tangible
and meditation is not an escape, we might perhaps as well
realize that the virtual reality of speculations are as well
not an escape from the reality of more tangible valuations.

Fundamentalist 'prophesy', is concerned with making vague
but long-term projections and the more scientific or
Technical 'prediction', is concerned with making exact and
short term projections.

But, perhaps I'd rather be a pessimist who purchases small amounts of
optimism on the weekends using the tangible returns of pessimistic
toil during the week, than an optimist who is completely subjective,
and like a model helicopter operator who continues to take
inappropo _real_ actions based on their _subjective_ model
of what is happening. The model isn't the real thing.

There's probably a golden proportioning that we might spend
the larger proportion of our efforts in a pragmatic mode
while keeping enough optimism to fuel the progression into
the future.

Children like adults perhaps should not play games during the weekdays
and people should perhaps not often speculate with more than 2/7
percent of their total tangible assets (I realize there's much
more to this, and leave it here as an open-ended statement
that we might think more about, rather than one we should take
immediate action upon).

The Hopi- survivors of the desert economy

Watch that helicopter economy; as the Hopi predict the 'this world' is destroyed and replaced by another when the poles change; apparently their metaphor for the controls getting reversed. They also say that Space and Time will change with the behaviour of man (here it seems they mean subjective as well as objective space-time, and the resulting control reversal when mind becomes separated from the body, or, subjective simulation of the flyer is separated from the objective helicopter, which they seem to call two-hearted, or as other native americans seem to say; at least in the movies: fork-tongued) The traditional Hopi are simple, peaceful, very wise, and survivors of the desert, where the understanding of the "economy" is the understanding "life". The late elder Dan Evehema has said that Hopiland is a microcosm of the world and of this, I can see as well many times over. We can also see that the "no photographs" request is rather like the Vedantic "non-distinction" or more quantum mechanically, a rejection of static spatial measurements and recordings. The Hopi Way Hopi Information Network For more information about Hopi concepts of Space and Time and how Hopi communication is fundamentally different from western communication see the works of Benjamin Whorf and the Sapir-Whorf theory of Linguistic Relativity.

Transference in teleoperation

There is an unhealthy "transference" between patient and analyst, that is not too unlike what could happen if a little pilot (patient) existed inside the model helicopter, and became locked into communications with some external pilot (analyst) as if his life depended on it (transference), despite the fact that those commands are not in realtime (ultra-high bandwidth)nor always appropo from the little pilot's point of view. The patient is often left incapable of flying on their own, by poor or just "unlucky" psychoanalysts, and the psychoanalyst is forced to fly two "machines" or "bodies" at the same time. This unhealthy transference can lead to life threatening situations when the analyst looses control. In some cases the patient, when rejected by the analyst who cuts them off from communications (which the patient sees as life sustaining), will threaten the analyst as a survival instinct similar to the instinctive animalistic reactions we generally expect from a human who is cut-off, not from "subjective food", but objective food.

Function, Form and Substance

Life is more than Generality and Specificity. Many games were designed to bring this out and excerise the mind. For instance, hopscotch shows children both linear progression when the hop is forward in straight lines (as in logical progressions), and lateral progressions when they hop to the side (as an analogical progression) which is used less often. Similarly, crossword puzzles in a sense show linear and transverse relationships to some small extent, but jigsaw puzzles show a more wholistic progression when it is assembled from small pieces that form chains or larger blob-like collections ultimately all being related to others as well as their neighbors and groups of neighbors etc. The jigsaw though is a static model, and a more dynamic model is more reflective of how things are related linearly (in a causual, dependant and logical sense) and how they are related laterally (in a correlative, independant or analogical manner).

Contrast and Brightness

For instance, a television has both contrast, and brightness controls on it, but neither of these can be used alone. You need both, and you need both for the same reason we need both localized specificity (contrast) and generality (overall brightness). The reason that some native americans refer to their western 'conquerors'[1] as "two-hearted" or "fork-tongued" is precisely because westerners tend to treat Generality and Specificity, as two separate processes, rather than treating them more holistically (single-heartedness). Westerners divide space and time, and generally treat time (linear progressions) as more important and distinct than spatial (lateral progressions). This is particularly evident in Hopi philosophy. The native americans perceive this dichotomy of the west as leading to many mental illnesses. Possibly in terms of being too focused or "anal", clostrophobia (too much contrast between "inside" and "outside"), indecisiveness (too general to make distinctions and decisions),.... One of the Hopi god figures is indeed a spider which weaves threads into webs like weaving cloth. And much of psychology is based on the psychoanalytical idea that the knotted threads of memories in our minds can be untangled through analysis and then when those threads are woven into a more consistent pattern, the patient can use that as a sort of space-time (place and time) road map of their memories to regain some composure and orientation in their life. The weaving in effect takes the threads of "rationalizations" and laterally intertwines them so that they are associated in a more consistent pattern rather than all knotted up and "repressed". [1] it's starting to look like they have conquered us in the same manner the chinese traditionally absorbed their invaders with a superior philosophy and insight