AlgoMantra, b. 2005

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Monday, April 30, 2007
TapTap by Andy Huntington
Among Andy's many interesting projects is this fabulous modular toy, a Lego-like way to arrange rhythms.

The boxes themselves do not learn or loop, they only repeat. This keeps the system as simple as possible. There is no perpetual motion only tap, pause and tap. At 4 seconds the delay is just long enough to give the boxes a life of their own...

...just long enough to wonder if they have forgotten.

[LINK 2] Finally, I'm not the only one on this path. "QUERY-BY-BEAT-BOXING: MUSIC RETRIEVAL FOR THE DJ"
Sunday, April 15, 2007
The ComeBack Turtles
I'm not obsessed with the tortoise for nothing, you know. The shape of the Great Indian Tortoise might just be a mathematically unique structure. Normally, for a shape to be titlted and come back upright, the bottom needs to be heavier than the top. What if this balancing quality was not a property of the weight distribution, but of the very shape of the surface? If this article is correct, that is:

Now, Domokos and Várkonyi are measuring turtles to see if any of them are truly self-righting, or whether the turtles need to kick their legs a bit to flip themselves back upright. So far, they've tested 30 turtles and found quite a few that are nearly self-righting. Várkonyi admits that most biology experiments study many more animals than that but, he says, "it's much work, measuring turtles."

The mathematicians still face an unanswered question. The self-righting objects they've found have been smooth and curvy. They wonder if it's possible to create a self-righting polyhedral object, which would have flat sides. They think it is probably possible, but they haven't yet managed to find such an object. So, they are offering a prize to the first person to find one: $10,000, divided by the number of sides of the polyhedron.