teaching machines

Modeling a Coin Pickup Sound

Years ago I ran across sfxr, a little tool for generating sound effects. Seven classes of sounds can be generated: coin pickups, shots, explosions, powerups, hits, jumps, and blips. The author, DrPetter, made the tool to support folks like me who don’t have the time, skill, or team to make sounds for their games. But […]

Introducing Flexercise

I remember reading C for Dummies when I was in middle school. Mom would drive us home and I would read. I wanted to learn how to program, but all I could do was read about it. I didn’t have a way to write any C code. Eventually I saved up some money and bought […]


On Christmas day, my 9-year-old handed me an envelope. In it was his gift for me: his two best hexaflexagons. What’s a hexaflexagon, you might ask? Vi Hart will tell you: She has more videos and patterns. My son and I wanted to make our own pattern like the fidget spinner one she provides, but […]


When I wanted to record my evolving egg animation, I went looking around for tools that would make it easy to repeatedly capture a particular area of my screen asĀ it evolved. I wanted a stop-motion style of animation, but I could only find tools that recorded continuously. Regular screenshot tools don’t make it easy to […]


In an earlier chapter of my life, I had the opportunity to work with a computational chemist at a Department of Energy laboratory to help build MacMolPlt, anĀ application for generating graphical models of molecules. I was given immense freedom to learn and create. It was that job that taught me the most about computer graphics, […]


Problem: I wanted to record my drawings and derivations on my Android tablet. However, no tools that I could find recorded an Android display at a reasonable speed. Solution: I wrote Deskdrawer to provide a drawing surface that I could mirror on my desktop, where I can record. Check out and download the app at […]