Posted by R. John Howe on January 28, 1999 at 05:09:38:
In Reply to: Re: Results of checklist posted by Marvin Amstey on January 27, 1999 at 18:21:51:
Dear folks -
This is, first, a request to Marvin and to Dr. Salingaros. Gentlemen, if it is not too tedious would you put up your scores factor by factor for the three ensis?
Dr. Salingaros, I would be espeically interested in knowing the number of "centers" you count in each of these three rugs. And I would be grateful for a few more words of elucidation on rules 8 and 9. And it would be useful to know how the scaling ratios in these three pieces turned out for you.
Marvin, one answer to your question about why despite the fact that Dr. Salingaros found real differences in the scores of these six rugs, he suggests that they are not useful for distinguishing the "great" from the others is that he may treat the range of variation (4) between the highest and lowest score as too small to indicate any serious differences in aesthetic quality. On the other hand, I work with Likert scales of this sort a bit and we would tend to treat a variation of 4 in a situation where the highest possible score is 30 as something to be examined. It is, after all, more than 10% of this possible score. On the other hand, Dr. Salingaros is the mathematician even at this humble level.
Dr. Salingaros' comment here and his related thought that we could see better how the rules work if the level of aesthetic quality in the pieces examined varied more, raises for me the question of whether the rules as stated work only to distinguish gross differences in aesthetic quality. And although, all three of the Tekke ensis are published rugs (someone thought they were good enough to do that) but I doubt that many of us think that PIC 3 is a great rug.
With his Hali ad comment, Dr. Salingaros seems to suggest that one instance in which the play of the rules is evident to him is in the ads for commercial carpets. I wonder. Wendel Swan and I wondered together yesterday whether these rules could in fact distinguish between a good antique silk Heriz for example and a contemporary copy made in China. Mr. Alexander and Dr. Salingaros both celebrate the "life," "the creature," "the image of one's most authentic self," yea, "the face of god," as something visible in an aesthetically great carpet. Yet it is hard to see which of these ten rules, if any, help us detect the rugs in which we are likely to have these experiences.
R. John Howe
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