Posts tagged: personal

Anonymous
asks:
How long have you been coding for?

I don’t have any experience coding outside of Mathematica, and only started using it about a year ago. Even within Mathematica, a powerful and diverse programming language that lets you do much more than make neat GIFs, my experience is limited to the most basic graphic primitives. Since then this blog has basically served as a ‘progress’ blog for learning Mathematica, which has a very reasonable learning curve provided the user has some mathematical maturity.  it would be nice to try learning other languages too.

i prefer to adopt a loose definition of art in which the object under consideration may not be intended as art in its initial conception by its creator, but is rather made into art by whoever allows themselves to perceive the object with an artistic perspective. With this definition what constitutes art is a matter of subjective opinion or willingness. This will allow us to talk about “gif-art” more generally as just “gifs”, and i think this is ok because what i like about gif-art is equally true for any kind of gif—its ability to loop.I think the main purpose of the animated gif is to express things in the medium that exists between a still image and videos of arbitrarily long length. However, its important the duration of the gif be kept short (a couple of seconds at most). It is in this optimum time interval where the content in the gif has the most impact because of  how long it takes the gif to repeat, which we’ll refer to as the gif’s loop. If the gif takes too long to loop then it may not reinforce its content with as dramatic of an effect. Gifs don’t have to have infinite loops, and can be made to loop for just some number of times only, or not loop at all, but gifs of this variety seem rare.To me this endless looping feature is the essence of the gif. The loop has the ability to create an additional effect for the viewer that would not be present otherwise, which is kind of peculiar because there is no new information being introduced. Yet, by seeing something loop over and over the gif is able to capture and exaggerate it to a greater level. This is a nice quality and applies to almost any thing that is looped—whether its something beautiful, funny, awkward, amazing, or trippy, etc.— and its this versatility in expression that shows how effective the gif really is.I am particularly interested in gifs that loop seamlessly where there is no obvious beginning or end to the gif. Gifs that have this property exemplify another essential feature of the loop which is its ability to make some event seem timeless or eternal. Exploiting this feature of gifs offers interesting and creative directions for art itself, but honestly i just like to stare at them and sometimes find myself staring at a gif for long enough that i won’t admit how long really.Another good example where looping is used as a creative means different than this sort of perpetual motion just described is actually in your work at MiRon. This is interesting because although the gif is not trying to directly capture motion it uses it to convey a sense of depth both literally and figuratively. Its like an enhanced image.i also think its worth mentioning the significance of gifs from a current cultural aspect. I think its completely justified  that “gif” (as a verb) was recently chosen by Oxford American Dictionaries as word of the year. The gif medium gaining popularity is no accident for many reasons. Despite being in this current digital age which allows gifs to be shared in unprecedented ways, i feel that society is at a point where not only are gifs welcomed but needed. Its almost as if the existence of the gif is to serve us through all of this immense information and media exchange we may be subject to on a daily basis. Again, this necessity is met by the gifs ability to loop. Like, we need to be reminded that its really just these short finite moments in our experience we really care about, and this reminder is reminding us repeatedly right after it reminds us over and over again.TLDR:i like gifs because i like things that loop.

i prefer to adopt a loose definition of art in which the object under consideration may not be intended as art in its initial conception by its creator, but is rather made into art by whoever allows themselves to perceive the object with an artistic perspective. With this definition what constitutes art is a matter of subjective opinion or willingness. This will allow us to talk about “gif-art” more generally as just “gifs”, and i think this is ok because what i like about gif-art is equally true for any kind of gif—its ability to loop.

I think the main purpose of the animated gif is to express things in the medium that exists between a still image and videos of arbitrarily long length. However, its important the duration of the gif be kept short (a couple of seconds at most). It is in this optimum time interval where the content in the gif has the most impact because of  how long it takes the gif to repeat, which we’ll refer to as the gif’s loop. If the gif takes too long to loop then it may not reinforce its content with as dramatic of an effect. Gifs don’t have to have infinite loops, and can be made to loop for just some number of times only, or not loop at all, but gifs of this variety seem rare.

To me this endless looping feature is the essence of the gif. The loop has the ability to create an additional effect for the viewer that would not be present otherwise, which is kind of peculiar because there is no new information being introduced. Yet, by seeing something loop over and over the gif is able to capture and exaggerate it to a greater level. This is a nice quality and applies to almost any thing that is looped—whether its something beautiful, funny, awkward, amazing, or trippy, etc.— and its this versatility in expression that shows how effective the gif really is.

I am particularly interested in gifs that loop seamlessly where there is no obvious beginning or end to the gif. Gifs that have this property exemplify another essential feature of the loop which is its ability to make some event seem timeless or eternal. Exploiting this feature of gifs offers interesting and creative directions for art itself, but honestly i just like to stare at them and sometimes find myself staring at a gif for long enough that i won’t admit how long really.

Another good example where looping is used as a creative means different than this sort of perpetual motion just described is actually in your work at MiRon. This is interesting because although the gif is not trying to directly capture motion it uses it to convey a sense of depth both literally and figuratively. Its like an enhanced image.

i also think its worth mentioning the significance of gifs from a current cultural aspect. I think its completely justified  that “gif” (as a verb) was recently chosen by Oxford American Dictionaries as word of the year. The gif medium gaining popularity is no accident for many reasons. Despite being in this current digital age which allows gifs to be shared in unprecedented ways, i feel that society is at a point where not only are gifs welcomed but needed. Its almost as if the existence of the gif is to serve us through all of this immense information and media exchange we may be subject to on a daily basis. Again, this necessity is met by the gifs ability to loop. Like, we need to be reminded that its really just these short finite moments in our experience we really care about, and this reminder is reminding us repeatedly right after it reminds us over and over again.

TLDR:
i like gifs because i like things that loop.

going away and offline for a little while. messages will probably be replied to by the end of the month. patternstream is queued for days. keep an eye out and be happy! everything is so lovely!!

(x)

(x)

Anonymous
asks:
What inspires you?

To keep things general:

  • The motion of inanimate objects
  • Nature’s information processing capabilities (for example, see this post on quantum searching)
  • The potential and the existence of consciousness in this universe.
  • humans being
  • happiness
asks:
Do you think that mathematics as a form of abstract thought is opposit eto meditation?

I think its important to first acknowledge how broad, and hence ambiguous, the term “meditation” can be. Despite what one may naively think of as meditation, the act itself comes in many different varieties. In some cases different meditation practices may even seem contradictory to one another. Regardless, many do share common features in their essence and guiding principles. For the sake of being in a fair position to comment, and in order for me to remain true to myself I will answer in the context of Vipassana mediation, or what may be referred to more generally as insight/mindfullness meditation.

Vipassana is a form of meditation with the objective of self-purification through self-observation. It seeks to eradicate self-inflicted suffering through a sort of reverse conditioning process of the mind in order to appropriately deal with the sources of personal suffering which are cravings and aversions. The main characteristic mind set for practicing the technique is to develop equanimity, which can be thought of as this ideal neutral state between one’s cravings and aversions. I won’t introduce the practice anymore than this (the interested reader can check out this tumblr blog for an idea, or better yet try it out for yourself).

It is worth mentioning that even though Vipassana is often practiced as a sustained silent sitting meditation, this serves merely as a controlled setting in which one is able to deepen the practice in order to apply and cultivate the technique in everyday life.

I think the question of how mathematics as a form of abstract thought is opposite to meditation is dependent largely on how the individual engages in mathematical thought, and not really dependent on mathematics in its purity. This should apply to most things we do and can think about. That is, any opposition to meditation that may exist is a consequence of the individuals subjective relationship with the thing or thought and not necessarily in the thing or object of thought itself. 

It may seem kind of silly to regard mathematics as something that allows for cravings or aversions, but I think this is a prevalent phenomenon for both mathematicians and non-mathematicians dealing with mathematics. The latter notion of having aversions towards mathematics is obviously more common amongst those that do not like doing mathematics, but even I must admit at times to not wanting to calculate some integral using some kind of iterated integration-by-parts procedure with some trigonometric substitutions.  A more general  example could be something like test anxiety experienced by test takers and students. The issue of forming cravings is subtle and could be more complex, but most could at least attest that it feels good to solve a problem.

The act of performing mathematical thought, say, while practicing a sitting meditation where the meditator might not be trying to engage in mathematical thoughts could pose an obstacle. However this can apply for any arbitrary thought in a certain context. Suppose you are trying to count the number of combinatorial arrangements of something, or getting caught up trying to formally visualize Hopf vibrations of a 3-sphere and its stereographically projected counterpart in three dimensional Euclidean space. Now, imagine some time has  passed and realizing you are trying not to think about either of those things while attempting to meditate.

A more interesting direction for this question might be to ask about the ways mathematics as a form of abstract thought does not oppose mediation. Or maybe even in the ways it might supplement that kind of thing.

In short, doing mathematics can be opposed to meditation practices, but it doesn’t have to be. Conversely, meditating or exercising whatever kind of awareness constitutes meditating does not have to oppose pure mathematical thought.

Current repairs of my computer due to hardware issues, followed by other reasons, will be preventing me from updating this site for a little while.

I am going to use this as an opportunity to queue some posts that have been in my drafts. I never posted them because they either felt out of context at the time, I lost the code, or they were just too strange.

Also, its the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere today. This implies that if you were to consider the derivative of the function that describes the Earth’s axial tilt with respect to time, it would be zero!

Supposedly, this arbitrary day marks the point in time when Earth has managed to make it around the Sun in its orbit 24 times since the day I was born. My Mom thought it was appropriate to get me a full licensed version of Mathematica, which is nice because now I can finally try to explore some new code after patiently dealing with an expired trial version and old CDFs for far too long.Thank you very much Mommy! This GIF is for you even though you have no idea what a GIF is (let alone what a quasicrystal formed as an aperiodic tiling through the intereference pattern resulting from five plane waves traveling in the unique directions corresponding to fifth roots of unity is). <3
Mathematica code:
Animate[    DensityPlot[     Sum[Cos[(Cos[n*2*Pi/5] + Sin[n*2*Pi/5])*x + (Cos[n*2*Pi/5] - Sin[n*2*Pi/5])*y + t],      {n, 0, 4, 1}], {x, -35, 35}, {y, -35, 35},  PlotPoints -> 70, Mesh -> False, Frame -> False, ColorFunction -> Hue, ImageSize -> 520],{t, 0, 2*Pi, Pi/10}]

Supposedly, this arbitrary day marks the point in time when Earth has managed to make it around the Sun in its orbit 24 times since the day I was born. My Mom thought it was appropriate to get me a full licensed version of Mathematica, which is nice because now I can finally try to explore some new code after patiently dealing with an expired trial version and old CDFs for far too long.

Thank you very much Mommy! This GIF is for you even though you have no idea what a GIF is (let alone what a quasicrystal formed as an aperiodic tiling through the intereference pattern resulting from five plane waves traveling in the unique directions corresponding to fifth roots of unity is). <3

Mathematica code:

Animate[ 
DensityPlot[
Sum[Cos[(Cos[n*2*Pi/5] + Sin[n*2*Pi/5])*x + (Cos[n*2*Pi/5] - Sin[n*2*Pi/5])*y + t],
{n, 0, 4, 1}], {x, -35, 35}, {y, -35, 35},
PlotPoints -> 70, Mesh -> False, Frame -> False, ColorFunction -> Hue, ImageSize -> 520],
{t, 0, 2*Pi, Pi/10}]

I will be giving Dhamma service for the next 10 days, and will be away from the internet during that time. I am excited to have the opportunity to practice in a newly constructed pagoda with private meditation cells. 

Please be patient with me until then if you are expecting a reply to messages. I’ve prepared a little queue of patterns including GIFs and videos similar to previous explorations. I give you all my love. May all beings be happy!

Anonymous
asks:
Love your blog!! Can you share with us your other favorite tumblrs?

Thanks, I love Tumblr! I made a list a while back of blogs on tumblr and elsewhere that I like. You can see that here. Most, if not all, sites listed are still active and even better than before.

The following are all on Tumblr.

Inspiring GIFs:

psykzz
xverdxse
xcopy
maxcapacity

surragateself

rednor
dvdp


Art:


homespungeometry (patterns)
dimensies (mandalas)
ryansalge (he can probably draw better than you!)
wowgreat (curated by Holger Lippmann)
W:Blut (curated by Frederik Vanhoutte)


Informative (math/science/etc.):

matthen (Matt Henderson is a Mathematica wizard!)
iomikron
sayitwithscience

spookyactioncollective


Misc.:
notationnotes (“An investigation of the relationship between sound and image.”)

These people write and post about you! I want to talk to them in real life:
s33

thanatesque
theuniverseworks

I hope others can enjoy these too. I may add more to this list when more blogs come to mind. There is so much i like on Tumblr that I may be developing ADD, but If you have a blog or know of a blog similar to these feel free to let me know!



I would rather not have this site be a place where I post too much about my “personal” life as I am currently in the process of dissolving my ego, but I feel strongly enough about this to want to share with everyone.

I recently returned from a very intimate time receiving the biggest hug from the universe (sometimes a little too tight!) in which I meditated some 80+ hours in silence over a 10 day period practicing Vipassana meditation.

This practice, which in its purity is entirely rational and void of any dogmas and blind faith, serves as a means of providing first hand experiential knowledge of the mind/body phenomenon leading to deeper insights of the self and laws of nature.

This work was done at an organized course, as taught by S. N. Goenka, offered to the public for free (food and residential accommodations included). Courses are offered throughout the year at numerous locations throughout the world. Here is a list of centers and course schedules.

I had the opportunity of taking my first 10-day course this past August and was fortunate enough to attend another 10-day course that just concluded yesterday.

Here is a description of the technique taken from the course website:

The word Vipassana means seeing things as they really are. It is the process of self-purification by self-observation. One begins by observing the natural breath to concentrate the mind. With a sharpened awareness one proceeds to observe the changing nature of body and mind and experiences the universal truths of impermanence, suffering and egolessness. This truth-realization by direct experience is the process of purification. The entire path (Dhamma) is a universal remedy for universal problems and has nothing to do with any organized religion or sectarianism. For this reason, it can be freely practiced by everyone, at any time, in any place, without conflict due to race, community or religion, and will prove equally beneficial to one and all.

I feel very fortunate to have been exposed to this practice and consider attending a course to be one of the best things I have done for myself. I suggest and encourage all to consider allowing such a practice to enter their lives to whatever extent one is willing to let it. If you are interested or just curious about Vipassana or my experience I would be willing to share if you message me privately. Also, if you are on Tumblr and have experience with Vipassana I would love to hear from you!

May all beings experience peace, harmony, and happiness!

http://www.dhamma.org/

This is now on queue until the end of the year. Some miscellaneous Mathematica output from mostly old code will be posted. So no new code, and no responses to messages until the new year. Stay tuned and be happy!

Anonymous
asks:
so how old are you if you don't mind my asking

A prime number: 23!

asks:
recommend me some of your favourite blogs :)

If you are interested in where some of the content on this blog comes from I direct you to the following links:
http://paulbourke.net/fractals/ (I don’t think you need to know how to count or read to appreciate the content on this site)
Arithmancy photo pool ( pictures from flickr)

Some of my favorite blogs are:

Computer generated/algorithmic art:
W:Blut
Generator.x
Data is Nature
Algorithmic Worlds (on Tumblr)
Syntopia

Math blogs:
These first three may require some mathematical maturity. Both Tao and Gowers have Fields medals!
Whats New (by Terrance Tao)
Gowers’ Weblog (by Tim Gowers)
The n-Category Cafe (group blog with John Baez)
Shtetl-Optimized ( by Scott Aaronson who does research in quantum computing/complexity theory)

Blogs on Tumblr:
Sense, Essence, and Existence
Mathematical Poetics
Science is Beauty
Incomprehensible Universe
Quantum Mechanics
Troll Physics
Infinity Imagined ( and also Small Stuff)
DVDP

People on Tumblr that I know in real life:
Manifold
Pretentious Elitism
Cut & Paste
Ryan Salge (maybe if you follow him he will post more of his art!)

A music blog I just started recently where I post songs that I like:
d/dt