log (2007/01/26 to 2007/02/01)

Words o' the Day: Blinded by Delight.

And don't ever forget Hitherby.

A reader writes:

why does a name matter? why is it always the first question when you meet somebody? why is it the first step to getting to know someone? isn't the first step learning the outermost psychology - personality? oops. i had something to say to david chess. oh well. my thoughts on names are just as boring.

... which closely echoes some stuff that I'm sure I was thinking about writing recently, but as far as I can tell never did. But there we are!

And now, the inevitable Second Life Pictures! (Because I'm still not sleeping.)

Art and Dale and friend

Here I am (center) lounging in the garden of an art gallery that has my charity-auction piece (left) on display (the winning bid was four hundred Lindens; nearly two dollars!), talking to a lovely explorer and exotic dancer (right) about the evolution of the smallpox virus (really!).

Just another typical afternoon...

The other day a prominent Virtual Artist Alliance person broadcast a group notice about an interesting new island where a math professor was doing some cool things. I zapped over and admired the neat algorithmic constructs, and then Seifert Surface (narf narf) came by (he's a Stanford math prof with something of a reputation in SL for making cool stuff) and showed off some things, and all this inspired me to try some o' that 'math' stuff myself. So:

Dale Innis and the 3D Plotter

I made myself a little 3D plotting frob: you give it X, Y, and Z as functions of T, and it plots the resulting shape with little blue balls.


There are various oddities in the Linden Scripting Language that I used to think were designed to prevent self-replication; I now think that they're actually designed to prevent object-piracy or something, because self-replication is actually very easy:

Dale Innis and the Replicators

Here I am with a simple replicator: touching the orange box, or any of the green boxes, causes it to emit another green box. The script involved is about ten lines long (and most of those are just syntax). If I'd driven it by time instead of by touch, and especially if it'd produced more than one offspring at a time, it would have been a nice little exponential replicator.

(And if it'd tried to do it too much or too fast it would have run into the heuristic Grey Goo Fence and been throttled. They seem to have the Fence adjusted pretty well these days, as all of the replicant attacks that one hears about are only vague rumors of things that never quite managed to take hold.)

And that's a little of what I've been doing lately, instead of all that other stuff. *8)