graph·i·ca·cy [ gráffikəssee ]
understanding of symbols and diagrams: the ability to use and understand such things as symbols, diagrams, plans, and maps
[Mid-20th century. <graphic , after literacy]
I love watching patterns form in a hot cup of coffee or tea. You see deep swirls when liquids mix, and funny arrangements coming alive on the surface.
Yesterday morning, my tea was doing something really weird. There were tiny micro-bubbles on the surface, forming and popping rapidly in the shape of tree branches. What’s going on here? Are there branchy fractals on the surface of my Throat Coat?
These videos are in real-time.
My two favorite things he told us (I’m paraphrasing):
- “If you want to make it look like you’re flying on film, you can do this… I did this in a Kanye West video: [stands up and demonstrates behind the table... bends over at waist to face the floor, and waggles his hands behind his bottom] put some little legs behind you, sticking straight out. [everyone is laughing] …And it is just so… stupide! And because it is so stupid, no one else will do that. So I do it.”
* Kanye West’s Heard ‘em say (lower quality) — flying kids are at 02:33-02:37, just about two-thirds of the way through
- [When asked if he would do a big-budget movie if he could, like with crazy special effects...] “I have no problem with big budget movies; they just have to have the right sentiment.” He gave Back to the Future as an example of a bigger-budget movie with the right sentiment, and The Matrix as one without.
I have perhaps just spent hours watching related videos on YouTube. I especially like the paint piano.
I am so very glad that he does these things.
Other prohibited possibilities: LOVEMEAT, MEATPOLE
(Thank you, Ian!)
I was browsing the “Gourmet Food” department on Amazon, and came across this lovely product: NORTH AMERICAN SALT 56050 “SAFE STEP” ICE MELTER
And it’s even “Safe-to-use around pets and children.”
On a brighter and more mouthwatering note, just look at all the salt you can get at Amazon!
The disk “X” is in use and could not be ejected.
Try quitting applications and try again.
I get this error message a lot on my Mac. And it’s so completely irritating. “Yeah, just… you know, quit some things and try again.” T_T
Yesterday someone showed me a way to identify what’s holding onto your disk. Just type this in your Terminal:
lsof +D <path to disk>
[mycomputer:~] guest% lsof +D /Volumes/LaCie/
COMMAND PID USER FD TYPE DEVICE SIZE/OFF NODE NAME
AdobeRead 11375 ..... ... ... .... ........ .... /Volumes/LaCie/dsp.pdf
… So if I quit Adobe Reader, I can then eject LaCie.
Do you ever watch or read a tremendous amount of something intended to be amusing, don’t find yourself laughing at first, but at some point start laughing and then just can’t stop? I do. And I love that there is something like that… kind of a threshold for silliness.
For example, I had this happen yesterday, because I did, as mentioned, watch all the “Get a Mac” ads at once. There are 30-35 of them on the site right now. I watched the first couple, thinking, “Sure, these are funny… ish.” But around when I finished the 15th one, I just couldn’t help but laugh out loud at every single one of them. I’m sure I was chuckling heartily for the last four that I watched, but I’m also pretty sure they weren’t any funnier than the first few. (My favorites were “Work Vs. Play”, “Choose a Vista”, and “Misprint”, btw.)
I need a name for that particular characteristic of amusing media that, with sufficient exposure, becomes exceedingly funny. All I can think of right now is “snowlol” …which may, as it happens, become much funnier if I had already made a similar joke 15 times.
I just sat in on a Max OS X Leopard Development Tools talk, where I heard about a few things that are pretty nerdy and pretty silly.
nerdy + silly = awesome
Download GLTerminal and get a working terminal window with graphics that simulate those old green/amber, flickering, curved-on-the-edges terminals I remember from the early 80s. Complete with low baud rate simulation (hahaha), and adjustable flicker rate. Here’s a version for 10.5 Leopard (make sure to set “Preferences” first, as described on this page).
Also mentioned was code that enables you to read from the accelerometers and light sensors in your Apple laptop. I’ve been dying to mess with this, but don’t have time these days. I’m hoping one of my friends will read this, and then make something totally awesome with it.
Now off to watch all those “Get a Mac” commercials I’ve been missing…
(My last post was almost two months ago! I never intended to neglect “best thing” for so long, but all I can say is that I have been very busy. And now I have learned that the momentum of pausing a thing like this can be ridiculously self-maintaining… as I suppose momentum tends to be. Argh.)
Tonight I realized that my best professor friend ever, Deborah Gordon, gave a TED Talk back in 2003 about her work on ants. The video has just been posted on the TED Talks site. It’s a great introduction to a very interesting subject, and I count myself as lucky to have participated in the exact bits of tedious work she describes in that talk. If you haven’t seen her speak before, you’ll get to see some of her characteristic say-it-exactly-how-it-is-but-somehow-it’s-funny comments.
In other news, my current advisor, Tod Machover, will be speaking at this year’s TED conference. So I’ll be looking out for that one.
Betty Lou McClanahan
Tue, Thu, Jan 8, 10, 15, 17, 22, 24, 31, 09:30-10:30am, Dupont Indoor Track
Enrollment limited: advance sign up required (see contact below)
Limited to 20 participants.
Participants requested to attend all sessions (non-series)
Improve your physical fitness while acquiring a basic knowledge of Arabic. This experimental course employs a strategic approach for rapid mastery and continued learning in reading, speaking and handwriting. Simple homework will be assigned. In-class fitness activities include pushups/situps, running and light stretching. All fitness levels welcome! Textbook: Alif Baa with DVDs (available from Amazon). Come dressed to run and bring pen and paper!