And I realize this is short even for filler posts, so if you don’t want to play an idle game, here is a remix of numbers.bmp to stare at and feel inspired by. Or disgusted with, or indignant at. Your choice.
(Short streak post. And for the uninformed, I’m using Spivak pronouns for this post just because.)
Generally, when people I don’t already know through math competitions ask me or my parents about something like how to teach their intelligent child to make em really good at math, or even English or whatever, I am skeptical by default because there seem to be a lot of Taiwanese parents who have alarmingly rigid and largely baseless expectations or assumptions about what their children ought to be interested in and excel at.
You can lead a horse to water, and honestly I think you could find a way to force it to drink if you really wanted to, but you can’t make it enjoy the process of being force-fed. Um. Force-watered? Force-hydrated?
You can teach your child math and English, and you could make em ace all eir tests, but you probably can’t make em enjoy the test so much that e decides to create more diabolical versions of these tests to give to eir fictional characters in eir stories for fun!
These are all actual illustrations from the old stories I mentioned in part 2.5 of “More Fiction”. Stories I wrote in 2004. As a first-grader.
This is kind of horrifying.
Mom dug up an old hard drive for me to find photos of my elementary-school self participating in the same math competition I’m presenting at in a week. I discovered a lot of other interesting old stuff there. So today’s filler post image for the streak is courtesy of Brian2003/03/23. I don’t think it means anything, but sorry, I really really need to work on that presentation.
Nope, still no meaningful post today. Instead here is a pretty diagram of the A* search algorithm (A-star in English, for my search crawler overlords). At least, I hope it is; I spent more time fiddling with the pretty colors than making sure the algorithm I implemented was actually A*. It looks right, though? In the background, red component measures traversed distance from start, (inverted) green component measures difference between the traversed distance plus heuristic distance and the theoretically optimal heuristic distance from the start, blue component measures heuristic distance to goal.
= within 15 cents of $20,000/7
= NT$88,661, by Google’s current exchange rate
= 739 hours of Taiwan’s hourly minimum wage or 4.43 months of Taiwan’s monthly minimum wage
= 317 hours of Massachusetts’s minimum wage (7.94 weeks or 1.85 months assuming a 40-hour work week)
= 1.2~1.7 weeks of a list of high tech internship salaries as featured on Slate
= 2,955 plates of Sushi Express
Ok I give up I don’t have any material and don’t feel like preparing any because the influx of IMO problems, including the shortlist, is too fascinating. Instead, here is a joke quoted verbatim from TVTropes (CC-NC-SA).
An American anthropologist has been studying a tribe in Africa by living with them for a year. One day, the chief called him into the chief’s hut. The chief sighed. “Well, my friend, it seems that we must ask you to leave.
= 1,478 cheap boxed lunches (at NT$60 each), which would last one person 1.35 years at 3 per day
= 1,122 Big Macs, price in Taiwan, or 596 Big Macs, average price in U.S. (January 2015)
This is not any better than the first installment, but I need to post. And then, you know, do homework and presentations and stuff.
Dr. Carver had just managed to drill past Dr. Perkins’s cranium when she heard the door behind her creak open.
“Ha! You walked right into my trap!”
She turned around. Dr. Perkins was standing in the doorway.
She looked down. Yes, they were both Dr. Perkins, she’d know that pair of glasses and spiky hair anywhere.
She looked up. Well, the guy in the doorway was wearing a set of black robes outside his white lab coat, but other than that, they really looked completely identical.
≥1 of you should know what is being referred to.
Oh yeah, I love being first. Of course the approximate price is that I have to expose the world to the innocent naïveté of my fourth-grade self. So far nobody mean has ventured there yet, but who knows. Darn, two years. Darn, Cards Against Humanity. I need more of that in my life. I don’t know what else is happening but music is good.
I’ll probably be making filler posts for a while until I make decent progress on linear algebra and programming work, including another presentation.
Let’s listen to some more music.
This is a Deemo song and even though there are a lot of things I could snark about in the grammar, scansion, and execution of the video (less flashy lyric video here), I kind of want to forgive all that for the (really really dark) poetic image.
I always tell myself, okay, I will actually just draw something facetiously and get it over with, nobody comes to this blog to admire my GIMP mouse doodles, but then perfectionist tendencies kick in and I get carried away and it ends up taking more than an hour or so.