October 23rd, 2003

run the fuck away

Morning spit..

Let's start by looking at how well loved our President is abroad. I mean, look at that crowd of people that turned out to see him. Brings tears to your eyes, really.

Meanwhile? What is art? The results from space probes apparently. I'm all about that. I mean, the shots that are returned are breathtakingly beautiful, and while the people recieving the data may not be setting up and braketting every shot- that isn't feasible. Instead, they go through a wealth of images, and select and crop the ones they find most striking. There's more creativity and originality in that than pop music by a factor of n^2 where n is fucking huge, so yeah, I think that's art.

In other news: how geek is the geek house? After lots of not-getting-a-roundtuit, apples491 finally pushed to get his computer set up in the living room. So now, our living room- and most importantly, the TV is on the network. This makes watching all of the downloaded TV shows and movies much easier, and much more pleasant. Rock on.
run the fuck away

the Game of Life

Life.jar: if your system is set up right, you should be able to just double click on the file and it will run, otherwise, you have to explicitly tell it to to open with your JRE (usually java or javaw). When it's running, click to pause it, click to restart it after it's been paused. Simple.

For those of you that don't know, the game of life is an interesting algorithm. The board is divided into cells which are either alive or dead. A cell begins living if it has three living nieghbors. A cell keeps living so long as it has two or three neighbors. And a cell dies if it has any other number of neighbors (lonliness or competition for resources). This simple premise leads to strange results. The app I'm distributing holds 10,000 cells, and you can watch as cells start forming connections and communities, and achieving a dynamic stability. Because that's really what the program is about. Certain arrangements of cells are stable. While the cells in the formation live or die, there's a pattern, and for lack of a better word, an "organism". The whole is more than the sum of its parts. Other unstable configurations die out. Sometimes the pattern involves moving across the board, in which case, you'll have mobile organisms, that will probably intersect with another pattern at some point- often, the two patterns mutually destruct. Other times, one pattern is "stronger" and actually consumes the other, and of course, the remaining posibility- symbiosis.

Complex behavior from simple premises.
run the fuck away

The Zen of the VW Golf...

Some of you may remember the "Da da da" commercial that Volkswagen ran years and years ago. Two guys are driving around in a Golf, bopping to a little german song with the refrain, "Da da da...". They see this chair on the side of the road, pick it up, and drive off. Then, as they're driving, they notice a smell, realize it's the chair, and place it at the side of the road. Then they drive off.

Now this entire thing is a metaphor for buddism. They're driving along, travelling down their path, and then they start interacting with the material world. They aquire things, and realize that these material possessions have an unpleasant effect. So they cast them aside by the road, and continue along their path, moving aimlessly with the refrain of "Da da da", they aren't searching for Enlightement, though that is their goal. Trying without trying.