# teaching machines

If you are an artist, there are two things that are harder to draw than anything else. The first is lettering. Bless you, artists, if you have to draw a busy street scene with lots of storefronts full of signs and words. The second is stars. Most artists just give up on stars. They are […]

## Multiple Assignment in Twoville

As I dream up animations in Twoville, I find myself generating a lot of shapes that share properties with other shapes. For instance, these two circles have the same radius and color: a = circle() b = circle() a.radius = 10 b.radius = 10 a.rgb = [1, 1, 0] b.rgb = [1, 1, 0] I […]

## With Blocks in Twoville

In my software engineering class in college, Dr. Drake dropped on us a half-written piece of software that managed a database of movies. Our challenge was to improve it. It was the first and only time I’ve touched Visual Basic, and I remember only one thing about the project and the language: with-statements. Suppose you’re […]

## Twoville Inching Along

Thanks to a snow day yesterday, I can now export animated GIFs from Twoville, my 2D drawing language. Gif.js made this possible. However, Jeremy, I think naming your project with .js suffix was a big mistake. When one clones the project, one ends up with a directory with a .js extension, which messes everything up. […]

## Introducing Twoville

Some students and I are building a programming language for generating animated SVG images. Rather, each of us is building our own language, because each of us wanted 100% of the learning experience. By the end of the semester, we’ll have four different takes on how to build such a language. My take is called […]

I said I was going to build a co-op game alongside the students in my gamedev class, but I haven’t touched Fourlords (a clone of Warlords) since before the semester started. Not until today, that is. I am in Baltimore for a conference, with a reprieve from lecture preparation. When not developing humans, I get […]

## Wolf Hollow Virus

My children and I just finished reading Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk. As I closed the book, 9-year-old Lewis said that books that win awards are always sad. This book won an award. I won’t go into any of the book’s merits. Rather, I will focus on one non-essential part of it that has been […]

## Another Integer Triangle Wave

I’ve across another way to generate a triangular wave. So exciting! Recall from last time that I want to generate a pattern that looks like this: In this example, the period is 10. As before, we can generate a sawtooth wave with some help from modulus: $$y = \textrm{mod}(x, \textrm{period})$$ We can also generate a […]

## Playing Telephone with Google Translate

A friend was playing with the Google Translate API and wrote a game of Telephone. He started with a message in English, translated it to language X, translated it to language Y, and so on, and finally translated it back to English. Sometimes the end result was incredibly faithful to the original message, but not […]

## Flat Braid

When all you know of trees is that they have bark and leaves, you view the woods as a background to the more interesting foreground activity of a jog, or a campout, or a proposal. But when one knows the trees, it’s hard to not stop every few feet and shake hands with some old […]