Paloma from Alongside a Border“Eleven year old inhabitant (Paloma Noyola Martínez) of Matamoros garbage dump wins nation’s Mathematics prize.”

A friend shared that news item with me via Facebook. As Matamoros is the border “sister city” of Brownsville, I happened to be familiar with that particular garbage dump (there are several in the area).

It would take a mathematical genius to create an algorithm that could capture the degrees of social misery that abound in the place. One could start with the organic data, counting the flies, or the rats, or the buzzards. At some point, of course, the inorganic data would need to be configured—the slow burning fires that melt the plastic of the junked fax machines, computer consoles, cell phones and other electronic garbage to make it easier to capture the copper and aluminum and similar precious leftovers. Read on>

 

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