Wednesday, May 31, 2006


graphing application

since i had the bitmap file stuff from the bifurcation diagram application i made yesterday and since i can't really move too well, i went and wrote my own function graphing application. i wrote this code in the past couple hours while watching the movie Dodgeball and doing leg excercises. i'm really amazed by Ben Stiller's versatility---i mean... Zoolander.

Here's sin(x) and sin(x)/x. It was only plotting points for a while, until i added the code to make the graphs continuous. maybe i'll add parametric equations tomorrow... it wouldn't be to much of stretch. I'd like to learn the AVI format next so I can make videos of math functions dancing around.


what i do when i'm bored

so i'm really bored since my surgery. i haven't really got much of anything to do so i spend my time learning to code stuff. i've been learning to use the gimp toolkit which has been kinda fun and kinda tedious at the same time. i've gotten the hang of doing callbacks. i'll see if i can learn to do this from LISP, since i think in LISP.

i realized that GUI programming should be left to people who are good at GUI programming. i'm good at mathy theory kinda stuff so wrote some code which spits out bifurcation diagrams of a simulation of the logistic function. we model the logistic function's diffeq as x[n+1] = c*x[n]*(1 - x[n]) for various values of c the function can behave cyclically or chaotically. i am varying the value of c from 2 to 4 with x0 = .5. i darken the y coordinates (between 0 and 1) on each iteration. i iterate 50000 times on each x value or until a pixel has become entirely black (rgb=000). i put my code up here in case anyone wants to steal it. it puts out bitmap files (my code is probably a good demo of the bitmap file format for people who want to do that kind of thing. you'll notice some index swapping stuff to make the thing display correctly) feel free to email me if you've got questions. i compressed a 2000x2000 pixel version of the output and put it up here.

Monday, May 22, 2006


knee surgery

I had surgery to repair my torn ACL in my right leg. A hamstring graft was used to put it back together. I'm going to be immobilized for the next few days and I'll be back on my feet soon enough. I graduate on June 9 and I move out to California on June 11. Totally psyched.

Sunday, May 14, 2006


Morphware startup

Morphware startup with their own platform.
QuickSilver Technology

It's always comforting to know there are others who share your vision of the future. It seems like a semiconductor company and not really a software company which means there may be room yet for some hackers to pump out the right kind of OS for these chips.


6.111 Woes

"This shit is taking like 20 mins to synthesize though.. " - My friend in 6.111 in the lab at 2 am Saturday night before the lab is due.

Sunday, May 07, 2006


Another Plunge

I'm running Fedora Linux now because Joe said so. I installed VMware to run a Windows machine so that I could use my MIDI router (there is only a Windows driver) and my sequencing software, Unfortunately the latency from VMware makes this an unpleasant music creation environment, I will have to fix my disk partitions in order to install Windows again. I will probably just get another hard disk.

Still trying to finish up MIT. I don't have that much stuff left to do, I can't believe I'm almost there...

I've been talking with my friends about the prospects of forming a company to design a reconfigurable computer operating systems. I first have to believe that if I focus my energy on it, it could be a very successful adventure. Xilinx has started the ESL initiative to increase the transparency of targetting FPGA hardware. A proper operating system would definitely be of interest to this initiative. Heres a short-list of companies that are involved:

Xilinx - Design of FPGA chips. Also supplies EDA tools for FPGA design.
Nallatech - Supplier of FPGA hardware boards for high performance computing
Cray - The original supercomputing company. Their XD1 has FPGAs on board.
Mitrion - Platform for rapid development of FPGA computing applications
Impulse - Provider of tools to target applications written in C to FPGA
Celoxica - Provider of hardware and tools for C to FPGA
SystemCrafter - C++ to FPGA tools
BlueSpec - Boston area startup focusing on ESL tools for FPGA and ASIC design. Their system is being used by 6.375 this semester and I've heard some positive and negative grumbling from my friends in that class.

Monday, May 01, 2006


Took the Plunge

After my computer was taken over by an intruder and converted into a pornography FTP, I asked my friend to make my computer run a Linux. I'm running Debian unstable and Xfce. Got dual display working on my Nvidia 5700. I'll have to figure out how to actually go through that install process on my own. I'll probably get some practice with VMware. Sadly I cannot run XP anymore, but I'll fix that up soon so that I can use my studio equipment and software again.

It's refreshing to use my computer like I know what's going on inside of it. Microsoft's operating system really does suck. It's obscene that it has such a strangle-hold on the entire world since I don't think people would have that much trouble using a free operating system.

It's been an interesting few weeks and I guess I'll note the major events for my own purposes. I finished my summer planning and I'm set to move into a place in Santa Cruz for the summer. It will be a bit of a commute to Xilinx, but it's closer to the beach. I was given a "Senior Legacy" award last week for my service to Theta Delta Chi. This evening I was initiated into Eta Kappa Nu honor society and became the "IAP chair" which means I'll have fun organizing the Project Expo next year.

Last week, I recorded a new song which is a departure from my usual trance music style. I also composed and wrote lyrics for another song, but I doubt I'll record it for a while. A voice from my youth tells me that I should abandon all my plans to develop FPGA applications and just be a musician. Maybe go on tour for a little while...

I'm going to start keeping a blog for my research. Ideally I'll read technical papers every week, write a summary and record my thoughts. If I write 5 pages a week for a year I'll have a thesis. I plan to write a good thesis that will pull together lots of ideas about reconfigurable hardware.

I definitely need to write more. I collect my thoughts when I write.

I was aware of a massive rally regarding the Sudanese genocide today. As the grandson of Holocaust survivors, I hear an extremely loud call to respond to murder and injustice and yet I feel powerless to do anything. But clearly I must be powerful enough to do something, because if I'm not then who is? Is typing in this blog doing something? I need to marinate on that one...

I like to use the vocabulary of memes as a tool to understand the way people and societies think.

I need to write more cohesive blog entries. I definitely need to sleep more.

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