I have a huge inferiority complex wrapped around Devine Lu Linvega. Everything he makes oozes style. Of course you wouldn't build a web server using it. He makes programming tools for art, as art. That as art part tends to rub people programmers the wrong way — it makes them obsess about "novelty" and "aesthetics" and "practical uses". Those people are missing the point.Just like we have our FoC community, there's a great community of people blurring the line between programming tools, games, music, and visual art, which Linvega is a part of. I highly recommend people take a look at the developer XRA (https://twitter.com/xra), who is making a video game called Memories of a Broken Dimension. Do a "MoBD is to regular games as X is to regular programming languages", and you'll find a very interesting/fruitful idea space to explore.
In the most recent episode of the podcast, Katherine Ye mentioned in passing a game called DragonBox. I was a big fan of DragonBox back in the day, and I was excited to be reminded of it. The above video does a great job of quickly explaining how it works. Here's the App Store link if you want to try it yourself: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dragonbox-algebra-12/id634444186Summary: through super-simple game mechanics, introduced one by one, you learn how to solve some fairly straightforward puzzles. Then, after solving a few dozen of these, the cute monster graphics start to be replaced with other symbols — first dice, then variables, then operators. Without all that much ceremony, you (spoiler) discover that you've been balancing, reducing, and solving algebraic equations all along.
I just finished Cognitive Dimensions of Information Artefacts: a tutorial by
Thomas Green and Alan Blackwellhttp://www.cl.cam.ac.uk/~afb21/CognitiveDimensions/CDtutorial.pdfIt provides a great framework for UI/UX-related properties of system design starting with a list of dimensions as sort of a catalogue, and then also applying them to practical examples. One of the examples is about visual programming languages and applies the framework to ProGraph and LabView.I found it offers a very helpful perspective and language on how to think about what makes a system great from a user perspective and obviously the example of visual programming languages should make it a really good fit for this group.
This also turned my attention to Alan Blackwell — I read his name a few times now and saw really interesting sounding papers of him referenced in not just the one he wrote that I mention above.
Is anybody familiar with his work and has suggestions which ones to read first?
3 years ago
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3 years ago
hey, so I just remembered that I live ridiculously close to Dynamicland (less than a mile), but I've never visited. I know and have got intros to various people associated with it, but always forget to follow up. Last I heard Dynamicland is closed, is that true? Because I live so close is there anyway I can start setting up regular visits to understand the system as a programmer? I figure this slack be a good place to ask.